33 Finding the Ship on which Julius Arrived in New York

Grandmother Kirmse, said that my great-grandfather, Julius Kirmse, arrived in New York City on board a ship named “Cosmos” (my spelling).

Norma (Kirmse) Rauh unsuccessfully searched for when and where Julius Kirmse arrived in America as is noted in the following entry of a report from the professional genealogist Norma contracted to search the passenger list microfilm records.

Excerpt of report from Jeffery-Bernard Lensman dated 12 Aug 1990
Excerpt of report from Jeffery-Bernard Lensman dated 12 Aug 1990

From this report, the search was made for February 1853 through part of March 1853. I assume this time period was chosen because Julius received his permit to emigrate on 3 Feb 1853 in Altenburg, Duchy of Saxe-Altenburg (See Chapter: Permission to Emigrate).

I contemplated scanning through the microfilms of passenger lists and then realized that there would be hundreds of passenger manifests containing hundreds of thousands of names for the time period to be searched.  According to the United States National Archives and Records Service there are 785 reels of microfilm holding passenger lists of vessels arriving at New York between 1820 and 1897.

Database Search

In 2004 when I began my search for Julius Kirmse’s arrival,  databases were starting to be made available on the internet.   Initially, a search of the available databases yielded no candidate entries for my Julius Kirmse.  Then I came across the web site, Immigrant Ships Transcribers Guild LLC. and on searching for Julius Kirmse found the following:

ISTG Vol 13 – Bark Kosmos
Julius Kirmse 19 m rustic Altenburg Buffalo.

Information Source

Immigrant Ships Transcribers Guild  LLC.

The ship was the Bark Kosmos.  The 19 year old male passenger was Julius Kirmse, a rustic (Meaning he is of the countryside) from Altenburg and his destination was Buffalo. This appeared to be the Julius Kirmse for which I was looking.

Passenger list databases have continued to evolve and now a search of gives:


Julius Kirmse

Arrival Date:

22 Apr 1853

Estimated Birth Year:

abt 1834





Port of Departure:

Bremen, Germany



Place of Origin:


Ship Name:


Search Ship Database:

Search the Kosmos in the ‘Passenger Ships and Images’ database

Port of Arrival:

New York



Microfilm Serial:


Microfilm Roll:


List Number:


Port Arrival State:

New York

Port Arrival Country:

United States

Note that Julius was listed as being 19 years old. My Julius had just turned 18. Julius had obtained an emigration permit.  But, given the emphasis the Bremen port authorities placed on having completed military duty, maybe Julius increased his age a bit to avoid being tagged for possible need to complete his military duty.

The passenger manifest list is examined in chapter Kosmos Passenger Manifest Observations


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