Pauline Muench was born in the small village of Nieder Gemünden, in Hesse (Germany) in the same house that her ancestors had been born for several generations before her. Her father Friedrich Muench remarried after her mother died when she was just three. As co-founder of the Giessen Emigration Society he led over 500 Germans to Missouri in 1834, and Pauline would spend her seventh birthday aboard the ship the Medora. Her family settled in a small log house in southern Warren County (Missouri) where she would live until her 21st Birthday and her marriage to Gordion Busch, from Bielefeld, Germany whose family had settled in Franklin County.
Pauline’s diary begins shortly after her wedding day on her 21st birthday, June 30, 1848. Through its pages we learn the story and the lives of one German emigrant family until Pauline’s death in 1891. Her journal entries share the births, the marriages, the Civil War, the good times and the sad. How the loss of her son left her with an inability to write for three years. She bore 13 children, adopted 2 others, and raised 3 children of her husband’s sister after their mother’s death. Pauline’s diary gives us a rare glimpse into the life of a German emigrant woman during the 19th Century in Missouri.