The Washington Post has published a letter obtained from German newspaper Bild, which recounts Herr Freidrich Trump's groveling before Prince Luitpold of Bavaria, begging the Prince not to deport him. The Prince, alas, did not see things Herr Trump's way and issued this edict:
“The American citizen and pensioner Friedrich Trump, currently residing in Kallstadt, is hereby informed that he is to depart the state of Bavaria, or face deportation,” authorities said in a document dated February 1905, according to Deutsche Welle.
The Post explains that Herr Trump originally skipped out of Bavaria in 1885 when he was 16 years old, as a means to avoid mandatory military service. He went to the United States to make his fortune and for a while was in Seattle and then up in Canada as well.
Grandpa Trump may have left Seattle for the Yukon with a donkey, shovel and a pick axe but the demands of hard labor became onerous too quickly and so Grandpa Trump opened a restaurant. It didn’t take him long to realize that the real money was in gambling, liquor and prostitution.
One Yukon Sun writer moralized about the backroom goings-on: "For single men the Arctic has the best restaurant," he wrote, "but I would not advise respectable women to go there to sleep as they are liable to hear that which would be repugnant to their feelings and uttered, too, by the depraved of their own sex."
Sounds like a classy joint, doesn’t it? Grandpa Trump furnished his hotel rooms with scales, in case patrons preferred to pay for services rendered in gold.
The Mounties initially tolerated the rowdiness. There were exceptions, according to the legendary Canadian writer Pierre Berton. People faced forced labour or banishment from town if they cheated at cards; made a public ruckus; or partied on the Lord's Day.
"Saloons and dance halls, theatres and business houses were shut tight one minute before midnight on Saturday," Berton wrote in "Klondike Fever."
Grandpa Trump’s Klondike Fever broke in approximately 1901.
By early 1901, trouble was brewing.
The Mounties announced plans to banish prostitution, and curb gambling and liquor. Trump quarrelled with his partner. Gold strikes were getting scarcer.
"The boom was over, Frederick Trump realized," Gwenda Blair wrote. "He had made money; perhaps even more unusual in the Yukon, he had also kept it and departed with a substantial nest-egg."
Trump decided to take the money he had stashed in his three years in Canada and return to Germany. All was well for a short time until his lies and lawbreaking caught up with him. He was then deported in 1905 for being a draft dodger and with his new wife, pregnant with Donald Trump's father, he boarded another ship for America and sailed to New York City; and the rest, as they say, is history.
Would that we could have deported our own grifting, gambler, draft-dodging Trump.