Von Trapp Family: What Happened After They Left Austria?


There are millions of people who are fans of The Sound Of Music, which tells the story of the Von Trapp family in Salzburg, Austria. Julie Andrews and Christopher Plummer played the roles of Maria and Captain Von Trapp, who fell in love and got married after she became a governess to the Von Trapp Children.

Loyal followers of the film can probably recite every last scene word-for-word, but many people don’t really know what happened to the Von Trapp family after they left Austria and went to Switzerland.

For starters, the movie was not exactly historically accurate.  There were actually 10 Von Trapp children, not 7, and their names were all changed for the big screen. The Von Trapp family did not flee Austria because they were in danger. And they wound up traveling to Italy, not Switzerland. They left on a train with the intent of heading to America to sing.

Captain Georg Von Trapp and his family were, however, against the Nazi regime, and knew that they would be compromising their beliefs by staying in Austria. After heading to Italy, they did go to America where they began a six-month singing tour.  They only had visas for the six-month duration, and actually got held up by immigration on Ellis Island after Maria declared that she “never wanted to leave (the US) again.”

The Von Trapp family did eventually move to the States permanently, buying a farm in Stowe, Vermont in 1940.  When they weren’t touring as a singing group, they ran a camp for music on the property. Georg died in 1947, and his grave is in the family cemetery on the farm in Stowe.

Maria and the rest of the family opened The Trapp Family Lodge in 1950, and it is still in operation today. It originally opened with only 27 rooms, but is now a much larger resort with 96 rooms, in addition to over 100 guest houses and villas. There are also plenty of activities for guests. The lodge is still owned and operated by the Von Trapp family.