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Les Amis du Musée d'Offwiller

Les Amis du Musée d'OffwillerLes Amis du Musée d'Offwiller means "Friends of the Offwiller Museum" in the romantic language of French.  However, Les Amis du Musée d'Offwiller finds itself in the midst of an once bi-lingual history of both French and German. The museum, Maison du village d'Offwiller (Offwiller Village House), is located at 42 Rue de la Liberation in the heart of Offwiller in southeast France.


Phil and Elizabet BrachetPhil Hauss is the curator of the museum researching the history of Offwiller.  Phil Brachet (pictured right), who's wife Elizabet is from Offwiller and is a relation to our Briesachers, works mainly in the genealogy department offering guests and visitors information about their Offwiller ancestral hertiage.  Phil Brachet speaks French, English, and German and is very helpful in your quest of Offwiller genealogy.   Both men are nice, cordial and easy to address.


According to the museum's brochure it states: 

"The museum is an house created inside to be that of a typical 1782 countryman home. The residents of Offwiller have gathered utensils and domestic agricultural tools and craftsmen implements in a typical farmhouse."


The Offwiller House Museum gave us the history of what life was like for Old Oak's Johannes Briesacher, his wife Christina, and his six sons.  It was not a comfortable life, however, it was a life of closeness.  Typically, the quarters are close and small.  How Johannes Briesacher lived in a typical small farmhouse with wife and six sons is hard to imagine.

Johannes Briesacher dram shot glass circa 1828

Certain traditions and customs for the time and region are on display at the Offwiller Museum.  One tradition you would as you walk into foyer of every house was a picture or hand-drawn display or plague that would welcome you into the house.   In addition to being a guest in the house you were invited to sit down in the "stube" or main gathering place of the house, to have a drink and talk about the "Good Book", thus every house had an upper cabinet in the corner of the stube, that would hold the family's Bible, bottle of liquor and a shotglass. The owners of Old Oak Estate Farm are blessed to have Johannes Briesacher's dram shotglass that he brought to America, in 1828, from Offwiller in their procession. It was this purpose and passion to educate that Les Amis du Musée d'Offwiller helped Mr. Hayes, the 7th great-grandson of Johannes, to see the importance as to why the Briesachers kept this dram shotglass in the family for so many generations. Unfortunately, they will never know if the dram shotglass had belong to Johannes' father and so forth.