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Trumps (Drumpfs) from Whorehouses to American Glitz

From a small village along the Rhine came a young Drumpf who found gold in the pockets of miners in the Klondike, sold horse meat to prospectors and ran the Yugest whorehouses in Yukon Territory. Expelled from Germany for evasion of taxes and military service, proclaiming themselves Swedish, the (now) Trumps swindled the government in building barracks and built a white clientele by keeping blacks out of their real estate — thus ringing up the farthest-reaching Justice Department suits in the history of the country. Most likely Daddy was a Klansman — which is probably why Donald doesn’t know who David Duke is;-) The news hasn’t begun to explore decades of ‘deals’ with Mafia up and down the East Coast.

Frederick Trumpf/Drumpf arrived in the United States in 1885 at the age of 16 and worked in New York City as a barber before venturing to Seattle in 1894 with a sister and brother-in-law. He changed his name to Fred Trump and launched a late-night restaurant in the red light district amid pawn shops, brothels, and opium parlors. When silver mining took off in the Cascades, Trump started a hotel and brothel at Monte Cristo near the Skykomish and Stillaguamish Rivers. Within several years there were 211 mining claims drawing a good deal of interest from investors back east, including John D. Rockefeller. It turned out, however, that rich surface deposits didn’t continue far into the ground.

By 1897, Trump had sold out and moved to the Klondike, traveling by steamer to Dyea and carrying supplies over the Chilkoot Pass. Along the way he opened (with a partner Ernest Levin)a canteen tent which served prospectors hiking the trail simple hot meals featuring horsemeat, and later a, hotel and restaurant in Bennett known as “Arctic Restaurant and Hotel” — which was a two-story wood structure surrounded by a sea of tents (Respectable women were advised by the Yukon Sun newspaper to avoid trying to sleep there as they would hear “that which would be repugnant to their feelings uttered by the depraved of their own sex.”) The hotel was decadent, though lavish. Menus included duck, grouse, swans, caribou, squirrel, goat — nearly any meats imaginable, and incredibly, fresh fruits form red currents and rasberriest though cranberries and strawberries.

Trump opened the White Horse Restaurant and Inn in the heart of Whitehorse once roads were in. The premises were open around the clock serving 3000 meals a day with a number of bars full of women.

Most of his income was from liquor and sex, Trump left the Yukon after three years when the Mounties began to tighten up on gambling and prostitution, and when his partner Levin partial to booze and running up debts. Trump returned to Germany with well over half a million dollars in today’s money: the source of Trump’s future property fortune. German authorities however, determined that Trump had originally emigrated form Germany to American in order to avoid taxes and military service. With these findings, he and his pregnant wife were expelled from Germany and returned to the United States where Fred worked again as a barber and restaurant manager. Frederick made a success of his restaurant business, and his son Fred parlayed his inheritance into hundreds of millions in Noew York City real estate.

Trump’s father “Fred” was named after his father and denied German heritage, claiming instead that his father was a Swede from Karlstad. According to a nephew, Fred disguised his German heritage since as a landowner he had many Jewish tenants, and it wasn’t a good thing among them to be German in those days. This was, after all, a time when “frankfurters” became known as “hot dogs”. The family stuck with the story of a Scandinavian heritage though Frederick’s widow continued with a thick German accent for many decades. Donald stuck with the tale too in his book on “Art of the Deal”, indicating that his father was of Swedish descent, though when confronted subsequently by an interviewer, he described his heritage as “really sort of all over Europe”. Trump was later quite reserved when a filmmaker from Kallstadt of Germany visited Trump Tower to interview him as part of a film documentary about the village and it’s global children. He warmed to the topic though when shown photographs of his grandparents and suggested that “I love Kallstadt”. In Germany, Kallstadt people are affectionately known as “Brulljesmachers” — braggarts.

Trump’s mother was a strong woman who long outlived her husband and wrote the checks for Fred as he went about building an empire named after her. Trump’s organization was involved in constructing single family homes, pioneering self-serve “supermarkets”, and housing developments as well as apartments and barracks for military personnel. They branched out into both affordable housing and large apartment complexes, row houses throughout New York (particularly in Brooklyn and Queens, leaving Manhattan for his son Donald) and up and down the East Coast. Fred Trump was investigated for profiteering off public contracts in 1954 by a US Senate Committee through millions of dollars in overestimated of charges.

The Trump organization developed a reputation for refusing to rent to black people which lasted well into the 1970s and earned itself the most far-reaching consent decrees ever negotiated by the Department of Justice. In 1927, Trump was arrested on charges relating to a brawl that took place when Klansmen in New York attempted to join a parade. Records on the affair are scarce, and have often been denied. It’s likely, however, that Trump’s 2016 denial that he doesn’t know anything about the KKK is likely to be a fabrication. Woody Guthrie leased an apartment from Trump and hated him so much that he wrote songs about him. Fred was known for being frugal and doing his own work, though he indulged in new Cadillacs every three years. He’d married a Scottish immigrant and had five children. Trump was known as a strict taskmaster and told his three sons to be “killers”.

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