By Dan L. Thrapp
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Additional resources for Al Sieber: Chief of Scouts
Letter from the Adjutant General's Office (AGO) to Frank C. Lockwood, October 19, 1933, Lockwood APHS. This and subsequent information on Sieber's army service is taken from a photostat of his service record, now in the National Archives. Page 16 described him as of fair complexion, five feet, ten and one-half inches tall, with dark eyes (recorded in later documents as "hazel") and dark hair (which was later often called "sandy"). The party of recruits which included Sieber was given very little time for drill, then shipped east to join the regiment in the siege of the redoubtable fortress at Yorktown.
For any growing boy, Lancaster must have seemed a city of delights. The surrounding countryside was a wonderland of fields and woods and marshes and hills, heavily farmed in places but wild enough in others. The country roads, especially the Philadelphia pike, throbbed with traffic that featured the huge Conestoga wagons (named for Conestoga Creek, which wound through Lancaster) for which the region was famous. Originating among the thrifty German farmers, Conestogas had been built for almost a century and were (footnote continued from previous page) probably Katherina Sieber, but I don't know who Charles Seiber may have been.
8 She probably had little choice. Johann, the eldest son, was now nominal head of the family, and besides, the prospects of going to the United States must have seemed more alluring than those of remaining in strife-torn Baden. So this unusual woman made her decision, bundled up the family equipage, sold her home or turned it over to relatives, loaded her brood and their belongings into a conveyance, and drove off. She must have realized, and her older children knew, that it was unlikely any of them would ever again return to this lovely land.