Robert Rudolf Emil Hindemith
Paul Hindemith's father, Robert Rudolf Emil Hindemith, was born as the third son of the merchant and councillor Carl Wilhelm Paul Hindemith (1835-1901) and the master furrier's daughter Marie Franziska Monica Seeliger (1830-1872) on 15 May 1870 in Naumburg am Queis, western Lower Silesia. His family belonged to the well-situated bourgeoisie of the town. Robert Rudolf Hindemith lost his mother at the age of two. Three more children were born as the result of his father's second marriage to Marie Auguste Lange (1839-1906).
Robert Rudolf Hindemith is said to have run away from home when his father opposed his wish to become a musician. He completed an apprenticeship as a painter, but remained professionally unsuccessful for the rest of his life. He settled in Hanau, where he married his senior by two years, Marie Sophie Warnecke, on 23 March 1895. The couple had three children: Paul (born 1895), Antonie Elisabeth (called Toni) (born 1898) and Rudolf (born 1900).
The family changed residence frequently; they moved from Hanau to Niederrodenbach in 1898, to Offenbach in 1900, in the same year to Mühlheim am Main and finally to Frankfurt in November 1905. Robert Rudolf unsuccessfully operated a white truss shop in the west of Frankfurt, which meant that uncertain economical circumstances continued to burden the everyday life of the family.
In 1914 Robert Rudolf enlisted for the Front at the age of 44. He was assigned to a reserve infantry regiment and was killed in action on 25 September 1915 in hand-to-hand combat near Souain Perthes to the east of Reims.