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This is the FORTY-FOURTH page of John BLANKENBAKER's series of Short Notes on GERMANNA History, which were originally posted to the GERMANNA_COLONIES Discussion List.  Each page contains 25 Notes.


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This Page Contains Notes 1076 through 1100.

GERMANNA History Notes
Page 44

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Nr. 1076:

The present note will examine the places of residence of some of the people who were in the previous note.  In the Culpeper Classes (1781) we have, in Class 74:

Andrew Garr,
Philip Chelf, and
Morton Christopher,
who are three successive names.
In Class 72, we have:
John Clore,and
John Stonesyfer.
While in Class 71 there are:
Oreginal (Reginald) Burdyne and John Burdyne (as two separate listings), and
Michael Wilhoit.

The general location of all of the above names is behind (west of) Garr’s Mountain, south of Criglersville.  The men in any one class were usually neighbors.  The names I have cited above are in three closely numbered classes.

In Classes 82 and 68, there were two Sampsons, John and William.  These classes were basically composed of English families.

If Philip Chelf had earlier sold his land to Christopher and Clore, on whose land was he living when the Culpeper Classes of 1781 were compiled?

In 1787, when the tax collector was making up his list of names, he visited these names on 3 March:

Philip Chelf,
Morton Christopher,
John Clore, and
John Stonesifer.
On 5 Mar he visited:
Michael Wilhoit.

*****
Returning to Philip Chelf’s first family, which I believe certainly included Nancy, who married Daniel Böhme (and probably included siblings of Nancy, some of whom I have tentatively identified), the objection is raised that Philip did not name any such children in his will.  This lack of evidence is negative, and, whereas the evidence from the baptismal sponsorships is very positive, evidence of the members of Philip's family must be inferred.

(Note from GWD:  "Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.")

But I am bothered even more by the lack of baptismal records for the children of Philip and Barbara (Yager Clore) Chelf.  While it is true that the children of Peter and Barbara Clore do not appear there either, this could be because the first child was baptized before 1750.  In that case, none of the family would be shown in the baptismal register.  Philip and Barbara attended church fairly regularly.  Why weren’t the children baptized?
(23 Jan 01)


Nr. 1077:

Here are a few parting thoughts on Philip Chelf.  If he were the same age as Barbara Yager Clore Chelf, apparently he would have been more than 90 years of age when he died.  People did live that long, but it does raise the question of whether the Philip Chelf who left a will dated 1821 was the Philip Chelf who married Barbara.  From this Philip, on down to the present, the people seem to be well known.  According to this 1821 will, there were three children.  Since two of three are already dead having left children, this speaks against two Philip Chelfs.

My feeling is that the baptismal sponsorships show that Philip Chelf had two families.  One family was previous to Barbara Yager Clore entering his life.  One of the children from the first family of Philip was Nancy, who married Daniel Böhme.  It appears there were other children also.

I wonder why the children of Philip and Barbara were evidently not baptized at the church which Philip and Barbara attended.

How long did Philip live in Frederick County, and what did he do there?

Why was Philip a chain carrier for Isaac Hite?

How did Philip acquire the land next to Gillison and Thomas, that he sold in 1762?

Why did Philip appoint Benjamin Gaar as the sole executor of his will?

Maybe some others can carry on the discussion about Philip Chelf, but I have said about all that I can.  On the whole, it has been a frustrating experience.
(24 Jan 01)


Nr. 1078:

Sorting the Germanna Hofmanns is not easy.  By way of a review of them, the following comments are offered.

The first Germanna Hofmann was Johannes (middle-familiar name unknown), who came in 1714 with the First Germanna Colony.  Since he had two brothers, who came later to America, let’s look more at the Hofmann family in Germany.  The father of the three immigrant brothers was another Johannes, whose occupation was transporting goods.  The elder Johannes became a Siegen citizen in 1690, and the same year he married Gertrud Reichmann, of Siegen.  Later they lived in Eisern, just to the south of Siegen.  Nearby in the valley was Eiserfeld, and the names of these villages show that they were ancient iron mining sites.  The Catholic region of Nassau-Siegen starts about here and there are no Protestant churches in these villages, although there were chapels, and use was made of the Protestant churches in Siegen and in Rödgen.  The Hofmanns were staunch Reformed people.

Apparently Johannes, the son, was trained as a carpenter, for he was hired in Virginia in that occupation; however, because he was only 21 years of age when he came to Virginia, it is doubtful that he had reached the status of Master Carpenter.  Johannes remained unmarried until 1721, when he married Anna Catharina Häger at Germantown.  About eight years later, at just about the time that Anna Catherina died, John Hoffman, or Huffman, moved to the Robinson River Valley amongst the Second Germanna Colony people, where he married Maria Sabina Volck, the stepdaughter of George Utz.  The Huffmans were slow to join with the Lutherans in worship, even though Maria Sabina was a Lutheran.  Instead, they built the Huffman Chapel as a Reformed Church, but it lacked a congregation large enough to support a minister.  As a consequence, they had only occasional ministers.  The history of this chapel is quite vague.

In 1743, John Huffman was joined in Virginia by his younger brother, Johannes Henrich Hofmann, who was born sixteen years after John (and was only 5 years old when John immigrated with the 1st Colony in 1714).  Henry, as he was known, did not come until he was an older man.  Apparently, he had reached the status of Master Carpenter when he was about 28, and at this time he married Elisabetha Catherina Schuster.  In 1743 he came to Virginia and settled near his older brother.

A third, and still younger, brother was Johannes Wilhelm Hofmann, who emigrated in 1741, two years before his three-year older brother Henrich.  Even though William (Wilhelm) did not settle in Virginia, we find him very interesting, as he left a diary and account book, which tells us a lot about life in Germany, and some of the special problems encountered by the Reformed people who lived in a Catholic territory.  He does not mention any training for an occupation except that he implies that he engaged in farming, but then nearly all people did that.  Among the services that he says he had to give to the overlords were mowing, making hay, hauling wood, hunting, and military service.

All three of the Hofmann brothers were educated, and we have written documents in their handwritings.

Only John, the eldest, lived in Germantown, and none of them ever lived in the Little Fork.  I believe it is the case that most of the Hoffmans/Huffmans of the Robinson River Valley were descendants of John or Henry.  I do not know if the Pennsylvania branch, through William, has been followed out or not.  There is no hint that William's descendants moved to Virginia, but this may be an oversight on our part.

(Note from GWD:  Just a bit about the naming customs of German families of this time period.  The first name was usually the name of one of the Church's Saints, in this case Johannes (John).  Each son was given the same first name as his father, then given a "middle" or "familiar" name, by which he was actually known.  Thus, Johannes Heinrich would have been called Heinrich in Germany.  This custom was not always followed in America, as the scribes who took down data for records would often write only the first name, by which a person might be known from that point forward.  This custom was also apparently followed with the naming of female children.  As is usually the case with any custom, this custom was not always followed, and was not used for all time periods.)
(25 Jan 01)


Nr. 1079:

There is plenty of confusion when talking about the Huffmans just because there are so many of them in separate branches, perhaps branches that are not even related.  Whenever one visits the cemeteries around Siegen, one certainly sees Hofmann stones which show the widespread distribution.  The modern spelling is varied there also, as some of the names have two f’s.  The first vowel though is always an o, never a u.

Two of the easiest Huffmans in America to confuse are Henry Huffman, of the Robinson River Valley, and Henry Huffman, of the Little Fork.  The last note discussed the former.  The Little Fork Henry came to America, via Philadelphia, in 1734.  No relationship to other Germanna families is known, but the ship brought a group from Nassau-Siegen, many of whom settled in the Little Fork.

A brother of the Little Fork Henry, Matthias, came in 1737, also through Philadelphia.  Matthias became a Moravian and lived in Pennsylvania, apparently at Bethlehem.  How this came about is unknown.  It would appear that Mathias had been here a while before he became a Moravian, as the Moravians were not that active in America in 1737.  When the Moravian Brothers visited Germantown or the Little Fork in Virginia, they always brought greetings from Matthias to Henry.

Henry and Matthias were from Bockseifen, not many miles northwest of Siegen, and just north of Freudenberg.

Apparently, the children of Henry and his wife, Margaretha Hüttenhen, were born in Virginia, which means there is no church record where we can find their baptisms.  B. C. Holtzclaw gave the children as Tillman, John, Mary, Elizabeth, Joseph, Alice, James, a 2nd Elizabeth, Susannah, Catherine, Eve, Harman, and Henry.

The Little Fork was popularized among the Nassau-Siegen people as a result of the early grants to Jacob Holtzclaw (in 1729) and John Fishback (in 1730), of the 1714 group.  Holtzclaw was an active agent in recruiting new additions to Virginia, and many of these settled in the Little Fork and gave it a German flavor.  The Little Fork is in Culpeper County today, but in 1734 it was in the newly formed county of Orange.

These two Henry Huffmans are easy to confuse; I know because I have done so.  The two never lived in the same area, and were probably not related.  They are usually distinguished by their geographical location.
(26 Jan 01)


Nr. 1080:

Recently, there was a mention of the Rev. Daniel Huffman.  He seems to be the son of John, who was the son of the immigrant John Huffman and his first wife, Anna Catherina Häger.  The Culpeper Classes of 1781 list no Daniel.  This is possibly evidence that he was on duty at that time with the American forces, but it cannot be taken as evidence of that.  It is possible that he had a physical disability that excused him from militia service.

There is one Daniel Hufmann in the Culpeper tax list of 1787.  He appears to be living on the tract which his grandfather patented, as there were twenty-two Huffmans that the roll-taker visited on the one day, April 19.

Besides the civil records, there is one record of Daniel Huffman at the German Lutheran Church in the Robinson River Valley.  This is a record of the baptism of Dina, who was born October 13, and baptized November 14, 1784.  The father was Daniel, and the mother was Magdalena.  The sponsors were Joseph Hofman and Anna Margaretha Bongert (Bunger).  Daniel Huffman had a brother, Joseph, and Magdalena had a sister, Anne Margaret.  It seems fairly certain that Daniel had married Magdalena Bunger.  The sponsors would be very classical.  That the year of birth was 1784, is problematic.  In this section of the baptismal register, space had grown very scarce and entries were made where space could be found, not necessarily where the year was correct.  Nothing in the record gives a year, only a year date is written on the page.  One reason for being slightly nervous about the year being 1784 is that marriage licenses started in Culpeper County in 1781 (I think) and there is no record of Daniel and Magdalena.

There is a later marriage record for the same, or another, Daniel who married Marg. Bingard in 1790.  I would be inclined to interpret this as the same Daniel who is now marrying the sister of his deceased wife, Magdalena, except there is excellent evidence of another Daniel who was the son of George (the son of the immigrant John and his second wife, Maria Sabina Volck).  This Daniel was born in 1764, and would have been 16 or 17 at the time of the enumeration of the Culpeper Classes.  He might have escaped from the enumeration.  Only one Daniel is in the 1787 tax list, and it may be this Daniel.

B. C. Holtzclaw (Germanna Record 3, p.46) equates the names Baumgardner and Bungard, which is an error, as these are two separate families.  Also, when he discussed the baptismal record quoted above, he said that Anne Margaret was a wife of Joseph Huffman, even though Anne Margaret’s name was given as Bunger.  These things have led to some confusion.

Some people have claimed that Henry Huffman (Robinson River) had a son Daniel.  If he did, it seems that this Daniel might have turned up in the Culpeper Classes, and certainly in the tax list of 1787, but he does not.  Therefore, it is unlikely that Henry had a son Daniel.
(27 Jan 01)


Nr. 1081:

A question was asked concerning a possible Daniel Huffman who had a son Jesse.  Daniel is said to have been born in 1742, and Jesse in 1765.  Looking at some of the people who might have been the parents of Daniel, we have first John Huffman, the 1714 immigrant.

John very carefully wrote the names of his children in his Bible, and they range from the early 1720’s to 1751.  There is no Daniel among his children.

John’s brother, Henry, came to Virginia in 1743, which is specifically documented in a letter Henry wrote back to Eisern.  Some people say he had a son Daniel, but he could not have been born in 1742, since Henry was not here yet.  Henry did have three daughters who were born in Germany, and recorded in the church books, but he had no sons born there.  Furthermore, as the recent analysis has shown, it is doubtful that Henry had a son Daniel.

The immigrant John had two grandsons named Daniel, but they were much younger than a possible 1742 Daniel.  Among the Robinson River Huffmans, it is very doubtful (impossible, in light of our knowledge) that there was a Daniel who was born in 1742.

However, Culpeper County included much more than the Robinson River Valley.  In the Little Fork, we have Henry Huffman who came in 1734.  He is reasonably well documented and his will does not mention a Daniel or Jesse.  At other times, there have been Huffmans outside of those that are enumerated here, but they seem to be later, or without a permanent presence.

A secondary location to look would be the Shenandoah Valley.  People moved back and forth, and seemed to be in contact with those on the "other side".

*****
Not too long ago, the Redmans were discussed here.  I said there were mentions in the communicants lists, but nothing more.  I must admit that I just observed today that Jacob Redman was a sponsor when a child of John Jacob Kneissle and his wife, Margaret, had their son, Jacob, baptized 24 Aug. 1777.  The other sponsor was Elizabeth Smith, and she might be hard to classify, for three of the sons of John Michael Smith, Jr., married Elizabeths.  The other aspect of this baptism that intrigued me was the name Kenissle which sent me to look up the names by which Conrad Kinslow (the modern spelling) was recorded in the church register.  The names for him that appear there include Kunzle, Künzle, and Genssle.  By merging all three of these together, I could imagine they spell Kenissle.  Conrad Kinslow married Rachel Barlow, and her uncle was John Smith, who married Elizabeth Unknown.  John Smith was a sponsor for a child of Conrad Kinslow and Rachel Barlow.  All of this makes me wonder if John Jacob Kneissle was not related to Conrad Kinslow.  John Jacob Kneissle was perhaps drawing upon the relatives of Conrad Kinslow when he needed a sponsor.  I would love to hear from people on this question.
(29 Jan 01)


Nr. 1082:

The Burdyne/Burdine family entered these notes in two ways recently.  Richard Burdyne was requested, apparently, by William Carpenter, the immigrant, to write his (William's) will.  The ensuing objection to this will furnished some insight into Richard Burdyne.  Then we had the Sampson family, who had some marriages with the Burdyne family.

I draw upon the material written by Carol Ann Burdine for a series of articles in Beyond Germanna.  She cited many contributors to her work, including Craig Kilby.

The origins of Richard Burdyne are totally obscure (at least to me).  No one claims he is a German, and he probably was not.  He lived among the Germans, but maybe this was because he married Catherine Tanner, a member of the Germanna Tanner (Gerber) family.  It could have been the reverse of this, as he may have settled first, then married Catherine.  Since all of his descendants have a Germanna ancestor, all Burdines/Burdynes are entitled to full Germanna status.

I have wondered if Richard might have been a Huguenot.  Would the name Burdyne suggest a Huguenot origin? Or has the name been encountered as an English name?

Richard and Catherine had six children, the oldest of whom was Reginald.  He was the only one who was not a minor when his father died, about 1761.  The name Reginald has given everyone a problem, English and Germans alike.  In Culpeper Class 71 he is listed as Oreginal (perhaps Original since "i" and "e" are very hard to distinguish).  Down at the Lutheran Church he was given as Richard (which creates a confusion with his father).  No one seems to recognize the name Reginald.  The will of his father, Richard, says Reginall.  Richard appointed Reginall, and his good friend, George Row, to be executors.

Reginald married Anne Sampson, the daughter of John and Mary Sampson.  She is named in John Sampson's will of 1778 as Ann Burdyne, wife of Reginald Burdyne.  The second wife of Reginald was Dorothea Tanner, whom he married ca. 1780.  She was the daughter of Christopher Tanner and Elizabeth Aylor, and was a first cousin of Reginald.  She was born in 1754, in Culpeper County (later Madison County, not too far from Criglersville).  Reginald and Dorothea moved to Abbeville Co., South Carolina, prior to 19 Apr. 1786.  His estate was filed in Abbeville District Court in 1787.  He does not mention his wife Dorothea or any children by her.  And he mentions only five of the six children whose mother was Ann.

Dorothea was in the 1790 and 1800 censuses from Pendleton Co., SC, with three females who may have been Veronica, Nancy, and Mary.  The birth of Veronica was recorded at the Lutheran Church in 1782.  The subsequent history of this subfamily is obscure.
(30 Jan 01)


Nr. 1084:

There are several land records that say the Jacobi family had a presence in Virginia earlier than the marriage of John Francis Lucas Jacoby to Johanna Friederika Lotspeich, in 1764.  These records also suggest that Francis may have been several years older than Friederika.  Some of the records are:

  1. Daniel Jacobus, warrant for land in the Northern Neck on 2 Oct 1747, surveyed 12 Jan 1747/8.
300 acres where he lives in the little fork of the Rappahannock River on Cattle Run; adjacent James Compton.
Chain carriers:  George Strother & John Poe.
Marker, Fra. Jacobus.
Deed drawn and delivered to Fra. Strother.

  1. John Strother, warrant for land 2 Oct 1747, surveyed 26 Oct 1747.
800 a. on N. fork of Rush River, adjacent Francis Slaughter.
Chain carriers:  Francis Jacobus & Alexander Monroe.
Surveyor:  James Genn.

  1. Francis Strother, warrant 4 Aug 1750, surveyed 23 Aug 1750.
159 a. on Kennerlys Mt.  Adjacent himself, Gerard Manifield, Thomas Kennerly.
Chain carriers:  John Francis Lucus Jacobi & John Strother.
Pilot:  James Wade.
Surveyor:  John Mauzy.

  1. John Oldham of Prince William, assignee of John Francis Lucus Jacobi/Jacobus, son of Daniel. Warrant 5 Apr 1751, surveyed 11 July 1751.
179 acres to include Bastard Mt. on warrant & on the side of Piked Mt. in survey.
Adjacent to Presley Thornton.
Chain carriers:  John & Robert Gooch.
Surveyor:  George Hume.

  1. John Francis Lucus Jacobi, escheated from John Daniel Jacoby, warrant 23 May 1772, surveyed 2 Oct 1772.
341 acres adjacent Capt. Compton.
Chain carriers:  William McClaniham and Daniel Jacoby.
Surveyor:  Richard Young.
From the warrant:  Francis Jacoby hath informed there are ca. 300 acres which his father John Daniel Jacoby by his last Will & Testament devised to his (eldest) son, Francis on Condition he should have the land valued & pay to his Brothers and Sisters a certain proportion.  John Daniel Jacoby departed this life an Alien & the will is not valid in Law & the Land escheats to the proprietor.  "P.S. The above petitioner says he spells his name (thus) John Francis Lucas Jacobi."

  1. John Francis Lucus Jacoby, warrant 2 Mar 1773, surveyed 18 Mar 1775.
368 a. on Eastham's R. & the Bastard Mt. at the foot of the Blue Ridge & foot of the Peaked Mt., adj. Presley Thornton, Esqr., John Oldham, Dad's (?) line, by the Bear Waller.
Adjacent to Alexander McPherson.
Chain carriers:  Charles McQueen & James Browning.
Surveyor:  George Hume.

The above information was taken from Peggy Shomo Joyner, "Northern Neck Warrants & Surveys", Vols. I and III.
(01 Feb 01)


Nr. 1085:

The Jacoby/Jacobus/Jacobi family had a presence in Virginia as early as 1747.  Since the records in this year pertain to land, presumably they had been here for a while.  It appears that Francis Jacoby was old enough to be a chain carrier in this year, so he might have been born about 1730, or earlier.  Later, John Francis Lucas Jacobi mentions brothers and sisters, so we have a family.  His future wife was born in 1744, and they were married in London in 1764, when he was, probably at least 34 years old and she was about 20.  I will assume that they returned to Virginia after the marriage.

Johanna Friederika Lotspeich, the wife of Francis Jacobi, had two brothers who came to Virginia also.  One of them is known to have come after Johanna's marriage, and I suspect that the other one came after her marriage also.  In other words, she wrote home to them and encouraged them to emigrate.

Johann Wilhelm Lotspeich was four years older than his sister, Johanna.  We know that he married Magdalena Klug, daughter of Rev. Klug, who died in 1764, in Culpeper Co.  In Johann's estate settlement in 1775, William Lotspeich is mentioned, but that is not evidence that William was married to Magdalena in 1764.  According to some estimates of her age, she was much too young to marry in 1764.  William Lotspeich was active in land trading in Culpeper County (I believe his first land record is in 1771).  The first mention of Magdalena is in 1774.  Matthew Broyles, in Greene County, Tennessee, gave a power of attorney to William Lotspeich, of Stafford Co., Virginia.  (The two men had married sisters.)  In 1781, William is in Culpeper Class 106.  The trail goes cold here for a while, but in 1811, he is mentioned in a Kentucky paper in the matter of a stolen watch.  Magdalena died in 1820, in Lexington.  Later, William married Sarah Sprake, and he died in 1828, at the age of 88.  Five children, four of them daughters, are known.  The son was David.  However, in 1819, a Benjamin Lotspeich is twice mentioned in the newspaper as a tobacco manufacturer.  He might be an additional son.

The other brother of Johanna Friederika Lotspeich was Johann Christopher.  He was born in 1750, and died in 1830, in Greeneville, Tennessee.  His arrival in America was in 1772, on the ship Catherine.  Four years later, he was a witness in the Culpeper Co. deed book.  In the Bourbon Co. Deed Book it is recorded in 1795 that he received a distribution from his uncle's estate.  He was said to be "of Virginia".  Apparently, the record is in Bourbon Co. because his sister was living there.  In 1798, there is a record in Greene Co., Tennessee, in which Christopher signed a release to his uncle's executors.

Christopher was a resident of Greene County for many years, since he had a North Carolina land grant in 1788.  His will was proven in Greene County in 1830.  He had married Rebecca Barbara Hartley, in Culpeper Co., Virginia, and they were the parents of fifteen children.  Christopher was a Quaker, who would not allow any work, including cooking, on Sunday.  However, Rebecca was a Methodist, and two of their sons were Methodist ministers.
(02 Feb 01)


Nr. 1086:

Nearly all of the records cited so far in the matter of the Jacoby family were land records, especially those in Culpeper Co., Virginia.  In 1762, Francis Jacoby is credited with a payment to the estate of Richard Burk.

The will of John Daniel Jacoby was filed in the Culpeper Court, on the 17th of December, 1767.  In it, John Daniel Jacoby named five children and a wife.  The wife was Anna Barbara.  The children were Francis, John, Daniel, Elizabeth, and Anna Barbara.

Three hundred acres of land and slaves are mentioned.  Anna Barbara was named as the youngest child.  The executors were to be his wife, son Francis, and beloved friend John Strother.

The estate was valued at  £118 by the appraisers, Thomas McClanaham, Thomas Baker, and Sebastian Hatler.

The 300 acres of land was apparently acquired from a survey that had been made for James Compton, Esq., one of the Commissioners of His Majesty’s Navy, for 10,000 acres.  Before the grant for this was issued, Compton sold three 300 acre parcels out of this to three different people.  One of these was Daniel Jacobus, who obtained a grant for the land in his own name.  The land for Compton was clearly defined as being in the Little Fork on Cannon R., Battle Run, and Hunger Run, Rush R.

We seem to have an unusual family in the Jacobys.  As an alien, according to his son, he would not have been English.  Several things suggest a German origin for the family.  But the interactions with the Germans is minimal; Daniel Jacobus seems to be more involved with the English.  And, we have Francis, who goes to London where he finds a wife of German birth.

It seems to me that Daniel Jacoby was very much at home in England, probably arising from living there for some time.  We know that the wife of Francis Jacoby was living with her German uncle in London.  I wonder if the Jacoby family had been associated in some way with Ralph Ladenburg, the uncle.  Had they worked together in London?  Maybe Daniel Jacoby wrote to Ralph Ladenburg and suggested that his son, Francis, was not finding a wife.  Maybe Ralph wrote to Daniel and said that he knew a good girl who was not married.

Of course, this is fiction.  I do mean to suggest that the history of the Jacoby (and Lotspeich) families, were it to be known, would probably be a tale that went beyond your usual immigrant story.  I would like to inspire some of the descendants to dig deeper.
(03 Feb 01)


Nr. 1087:

Fred Westcott added more information about the Jacoby family, and, in order that it form a part of the Jacoby sequence here, I am restating the information that he supplied, with the addition of a little more from other sources.

John Francis Lucas Jacobi and his wife Johanna Friederika Lotspeich were married in 1764, in London.  They moved back to Virginia.  In 1784 and 1786 they sold their land in Culpeper Co., Virginia, and moved to Bourbon Co., Kentucky.  Francis Jacoby died there in 1788, leaving a will.  It mentions his wife Frederica, three daughters, Katrina, Elizabeth Butler, and Susannah, and sons, Frank, Ralph Gladingsberg, Frederick, Henry, John V., Adam, Jacob, and Daniel.  Thus, the twenty-four years of marriage produced at least eleven children, according to the will.

The will was witnessed by John Grant, William Butler (perhaps a son-in-law), and Catherine Butler (relationship unknown).  Executors were to be Fredericka, John Grant, and William Butler.  The will itself is filed in Will Book A, p.7.

Then, in 1798, again in Bourbon Co., Henry Jacoby made a will.  He names the heirs of his brother Francis (probably this is the Frank above).  Henry also mentions his parents (?) and an Adam.  Henry does not seem to have a wife, so leaving his estate to his brothers and sisters would be logical.  Adam would have been his brother.  William Butler appears again as a witness, along with John Burns and Elizabeth Watts.  (Watts is a good Culpeper name.)  This will is filed in Will Book B, p.118.

The article on the Lotspeich family in Beyond Germanna gives the children of Francis Lucas Jacoby and Friederika Lotspeich as:

Katrina (m. William Butler),
Susannah (m. Benjamin Hallock),
Ralph Ladenberg (drowned in the Mississippi River),
Francis (m. ___ Plunkett),
Henry (drowned),
Daniel (m. Nancy Rutledge),
Elizabeth,
Frederick, (m. Nancy Bivins, was killed by Indians),
Jacob (m. Polly Stark),
Rachel (m. Joseph Hibler),
John (m. Jane Stark),
Adam (b. 1783 and died young).
A comparison to the will shows that Rachel was not in the will.

The name Ralph Gladingsberg in the will is a mistake as he was named for his uncle, who used the name Ralph Ladenberg in London.

Fred Westcott also asked about the name Lucas in Culpeper Co.  I see a Francis Lucas and a William Lucas in the 1781 Culpeper Classes, number 55.  The only German names here that I recognize are James Wilhoit and perhaps Daniel Deel (Diehl).  The same two Lucas names, plus another Francis, are in the 1787 Culpeper tax list.
(05 Feb 01)


Nr. 1088:

Recent inquiries about the Richter family, usually known in the U.S. as Rector, have been answered partially.  The name Richter in Germany occurs quite often, so it should not be assumed that all Richters and Rectors in the U.S. are related.  (The Richter scale for earthquake measurement was invented by a Richter, who I believe was at the California Institute of Technology.)

The Richter history is rich in knowledge.  The house in which Johann Jacob Richter lived in Germany (at Trupbach) stood until about fifty years ago, when it was destroyed during World War II.  Pictures of it exist, and one is displayed on the German Photo Page for Trupbach.  The actual site of the home is known, and even the door threshold still exists.  An implement shed for a farmer now stands on the site.

I thought that we might go back to Trupbach as of 1707.  There were 25 homes in the village then, and the occupant of each is known.  Incidentally, each house had a name and I believe that the names have continued down to the present.  The surnames of the inhabitants of the village in 1707 were Jung (Young), Zimmerman, Becker, Heide, Otterbach, Heite, Richter, Schneider, Goebel, Becker, Schneider, Otterbach, Otterbach, Wisse, Fischbach, Jung, Hugo, Fischbach, Lück, and Schneider.  One house had no named occupants.  One of the houses is claimed to have been built in 1563, but the rest were built in the 1600’s.  Two of these 25 houses are no longer standing, and one was rebuilt in 1948.  Buildings don't die in Germany; they are just born again.

The locations of the 25 houses are known.  Usually the ownership can be traced down to the present.  Several farmers live in the heart of the village even today.  In 1707, each house was the home of a farmer, even if he had another means of earning a living.  Almost universally, the houses were built on three levels.  The first level was the stable, or barn, for the animals which always included at least one cow, usually pigs, and, commonly, sheep.  The number of horses was very limited and the basic draft animal was a cow (ox).

Above the ground floor used for the animals were the quarters in which the family lived.  Then, above this was the hay mow (pronounced as in "now", not as in "no").  The hay mow was excellent insulation for the humans and the animals and people were mutually supportive.  This arrangement, not unusual in Germany, was particularly important in Trupbach, because iron processing was done in the region and it consumed prodigious amounts of wood for charcoal.  For every pound of iron that was smelted, it took about fifty pounds of wood to make the charcoal.  Wood for heating a house was scarce.  Essentially, what was available were the twigs and small branches that were left after heavier wood was taken for charcoal.  So it was very important to conserve the heat in the homes.

Many of the homes were large enough that, without the animals, they would be too large today.  So many have been converted to duplexes and split in the middle to make two homes.

I am quoting here from a recent article in Beyond Germanna.  It in turn was based on the book, "Trupbach 1389 ­ 1989, Ortgeschichte in Texten und Bildern".  The book was published in German by individuals in Trupbach who were interested in its history.
(06 Feb 01)


Nr. 1089:

In the last note, we looked in on Trupbach, Germany, in the year 1707, where we found the names of many of our Germanna families.  Three of these families immigrated to Virginia in 1713 after they were recruited by Johann Justus Albrecht to mine silver for George Ritter and Company.

There is a tax list for Trupbach in the year 1566.  This shows some of the major elements in their livelihood.  One of the "richest" people in the village was Henn Schneider, who owned the following with his stepson Hermann (no last name given, and perhaps he adopted the name Schneider).  They had a house, two barns (or sheds), the farm itself, the meadows, the fields, one horse, six cows, three heifers, sixteen sheep, seven swine, and a bond (I presume evidence of money that he had lent to another individual).  The farm may have been the land around the house.  The meadows and fields were probably separate pieces of ground at some distance from the house.  Most people in the village owned a "Hauberg"*, and many had a mention of a garden and orchards, but Henn Schneider had none of these listed.  He was one of the few people in town who owned a horse.  So perhaps his life style was a bit different from the others.

At the other extreme was Demuth, a single female farm laborer.  She had no surname, and certainly she had little in physical goods.  The tax collector put her down for "all her goods" at a very modest evaluation, and he noted her cow.  The total tax was 3 Batzen, one of the smallest coins.

In all, there were 17 households.  Some of the names that we might recognize include Schneider, Becker, Hofmann, Heiten, and Zimmerman.  (Not only are there spelling variations in some of the names, the village itself was called Drupach.)

A more typical family was Heyte Leineweber (Linenweaver), whose house, farm, and grounds were rated at 50 R (Rädergulden).  His meadows had a similar evaluation, but his fields came in at 56 R.  His garden was 8 R.  The Hauberg was 60 R.  The forest was 6 R.  His five cows were rated at 4 R each (a standard evaluation), four heifers at 2 R each (again standard), twelve sheep at ½ R each.  The swine were rated at 1R each.  All of the animals, except for the horses, followed the standard evaluations of the time.

I presume the meadows were used to graze animals, and to cut hay for winter feeding.  I am also presuming the fields are where the land was plowed, and grains and flax were planted.  On most of the households, the meadows were rated more highly than the fields, which shows how important it was to grow hay and provide pasture for the animals.

Again, I am taking information from Beyond Germanna which originally came from "Ortsgeschichte Trupbach", 1989.  In 1566, there appears to be no Richters in the village.

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(*To read other Notes on this website concerning "Haubergs", you may click on the links below.  There are also some links for German web sites that explain what a "Hauberg" is in detail, and have some photos and drawings.

  1. The Fellinghausen Hauberg Photos page;
  2. Page 36, Note Nr. 894;
  3. Page 42, Notes Nr. 1038 & 1039;
  4. Page 44, Note Nr. 1089;
  5. Page 57, Note Nr. 1408;
  6. Page 64, Note Nr. 1584;

  7. Page 86, Notes Nr. 2141 & 2142;

  8. (Other Websites:)
  9. HAUBERG-Production of Charcoal (Translated by Google to English);
  10. HAUBERG-Production of Charcoal (In German);
  11. Der Siegerländer Hauberg (In German)  (Click on "Haubergsarbeiten im Jahreslauf", "Der historische Hauberg", and "Einführung" on the right.)

Be sure to read on down the Notes pages referenced above, since "Hauberg" is discussed in several places in those Notes.  GWD-Webmaster)
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(07 Feb 01)


Nr. 1090:

It is often said that the First Germanna Colonies consisted of miners.  In this note, I will examine the occupations of people living in Trupbach, from where three of the First Colony families came (the Rectors, the Fishbacks, and the Utterbacks).  The time of our looking is the Eighteenth Century.  The data comes from the church records, where the occupation of the father is often mentioned in connection with marriages, baptisms, and funerals.  Trupbach itself had no church, only a Chapel, and the people went into Siegen, a few miles distant.

In the 1600's, one miner is mentioned.  In the 1700's, two are mentioned (in 1780 and 1785).  In the 1800's, twenty names are mentioned as miners, but this was a century after the Germanna people left.  Trupbach did sit on some good underground ore beds, but until the steam engine came along, it was impractical to open those mines.  It took too much power to pump out the water which seeped in, and to lift the ore and burden.  So when our people left, Trupbach was not known as a mining town because the steam engine was not a practical device yet.

The occupation employing the most people was carpentry.  Seven people, during the 1700's, gave this as their occupation.  Included in this number were the two Fischbach sons, who came to Virginia.  Their father, who was also listed a carpenter, was mentioned in 1683.  Other carpenters in the village were Jost Schneider (1637), Veltin Schneider (1678), Johannes Otterbach (1704), Henrich Cursch (1736), Jacob Heide (17??), and Ludwig Jung (1806).  All of these people lived in the same house, and where there is a name change, the man had married a daughter of the previous generation.

There was one wheelwright, one wood turner (1791), and three forge workers.  Henrich Schneider was a forge worker in 1743, Philipp Schuss in 1786, and Michael Heide in 1786.  A respectable water course flows by Trupbach, which furnished power for forge(s).  The forge seems to be distinct from the blacksmith shop.  No one is listed as a blacksmith in the 1700's.

Though it is hard to visualize a market large enough for the products, four generations of the Richters were clockmakers.  They started with Christoffel in 1666, on to Johannes in 1704, then Herman in 1738, and the latter's son-in-law, Henrich Hoffman in 1773.

One concludes that the basic occupation of the inhabitants was farming.  Farming kept body and soul together as we say.  On the side, a few of the men are listed as having other occupations, but, after the carpenters and the clockmakers are removed, little remains.

In the next century, the Nineteenth, several other occupations are listed.

Certainly, from the occupations given here about the Trupbach residents, one would not conclude that the First Colony consisted of miners.  I have asked if anyone could furnish proof that any member of the First Colony was a miner, or, in general, a mine worker, or a smelter of iron.  No one has come forward with the evidence.  Lt. Gov. Spotswood did write once in a letter that they were "generally miners".  This could mean many things, but perhaps nothing more than that they had seen some mining done.
(08 Feb 01)


Nr. 1091:

The overall picture of Trupbach, the home of the Richters, Otterbachs, and Fischbachs in the Germanna Colonies, is a small village that was a dependency of a larger city, in this case, Siegen.  In 1713, it had 25 homes, up slightly from the century before.  It still did not grow until the nineteenth century, when mining became important.  However, even in the early twentieth century it retained the flavor of a smaller agricultural village.  Today, it is much larger, with hundreds of homes at the core of the older village and in the surrounding area.

In 1713, it was definitely an agricultural village.  The design of the older homes has been maintained, and they show the agricultural flavor.  Nearly all of the 1713 homes had an interest in the "Hauberg" cooperative which grew wood, bark, and grain, and was used for some pasture.  These Haubergs had been established centuries earlier in an effort to supply the region with bark for tanning, large wood for charcoal, and small wood for heat.

The photographs that exist from the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, even up to 1950, show that a major element in the labor force was made up of females of all ages.  They harvested grain and hay, and stripped the trees in the Hauberg of their bark.  It was not a division of labor.  More exactly, both sexes worked at everything.  (The practice continues until today.  The men ride the tractors and mow hay, and the women use the scythes to cut the edges and the corners missed by the mower.)

Some of the men were trained in other activities.  John Jacob Rector was a metal worker.  His family had been clockmakers for a few generations.  The Fishbacks seem to be carpenters.  John Huffman, who came from Eisern, seemed to be in training as a carpenter.  His brother, Henry, who came later, apparently was a master carpenter.  The process of becoming a master in any of these trades was extensive and took many years.  Depending upon the trade, it might take ten or more years of training before a person could say he was a master of the trade, and able to go into business on his own.

How did one become a "Master" of anything?  The process was controlled by the guilds, one for each trade.  They admitted individuals into training, under the immediate supervision of a Master in the guild.  This lowest level was the Apprentice, and the training might start as early as the age of ten years.  The responsibilities at this age were minor, but, as the Apprentice was growing, the Master was judging whether the boy had any potential.  Eventually, if the Apprentice did show an aptitude for the work, he would advance to the level of Journeyman.  Then he would work with other Masters and broaden his knowledge and skills.  Eventually, when he was in his late twenties, he would pass an examination and be called a Master.

Johann Jacob Richter was a member of the Guild of Steelsmiths and Toolmakers of the Freudenberg District, having been admitted at the age of 37 years.  Just the previous year, he had married Elisabeth Fischbach.  This was typical, as people in training were not allowed to marry.  Philip Fischbach was apparently a carpenter.  I will presume he was a Master also, as he was said to be a carpenter in the church records, and one was not entitled to the title until the level of Master had been reached.  The two sons of Philip seemed to have been in training as carpenters, but they were not old enough to have reached the level of Master.
(09 Feb 01)


Nr. 1092:

The recent notes, which generally had Trupbach as their central theme, were originally prompted by the request of a reader for more information about the Rectors.  Fortunately, there is quite a bit that is known.  Not only does this add to the Rector history, it adds to the history of the First Colony, and to emigration from Germany in general.

Here, in America, the revisions to the Rector history that have been made in the last ten years serve as a warning to all families.  When I started publishing Beyond Germanna about twelve years ago, there were some questions about the early history of the Rectors, but on the whole it seemed very secure.  Then John Gott dug around in the loose papers at the Fauquier Courthouse and found documents that required a revision to the history.  One man had been married twice, and apparently most of the children were by the second wife.

How does a court house get loose papers?  In this case, it appears that a lawsuit was never concluded.  Papers had been filed and dispositions had been taken, but the suit was never concluded.  The papers were never recorded, and were being held in the Pending file.  Eventually, it was recognized there would be no conclusion to the suit and the papers were consigned to a storage box, without being recorded.  After John Gott and I published the contents of the papers, John Alcock offered an interpretation of them.

There had been a difficulty in assigning the parentage of some of the men in the Rector family.  The best that had been offered was a contorted reading of the will of one man.  Now it was John Alcock's turn to find some loose papers that clarified and corrected the assignments that had been made.

Barbara Vines Little put her expertise with land records (and other areas) to work and found that one Rector man was really two men.  By the time all of these experts had finished, the early history had been revised in several ways.  (Nor was this the complete story.)

Now, I grant there was an expert pursuit of the problem by these people.  In no way do I wish to imply that there was not a skill factor in their research.  Still, there was a probability to be connected to the findings.  It was a lucky turn that the county commissioners at some point decided not to use the loose papers to start fires.  Commissioners did things such as this, and, had they done so in this case, we would never have suspected that John Rector, son of the immigrant John Jacob Rector, had two wives.  So it was a lucky event that the papers survived.  It was even a lucky event that there were papers in the first place.  Had not one individual been dissatisfied and brought suit, there would not have been papers.

There is a warning for researchers in all families.  How sure can we be that the stated history is really correct?  Can you really vouch that So-and-so was not married twice?  Even if the same name appears in the records as a wife, this is not hard proof that she is the same woman.  All of these events are only probabilities, which, with hard work, might be improved or actually corrected.
(10 Feb 01)


Nr. 1093:

On the German-Life Mailing List at Rootsweb, there was a recent discussion concerning guilds, trades, masters, occupations, etc.  We had had some little discussion here, especially as pertains to John Jacob Rector, who was admitted to the Guild of Steelsmiths and Toolmakers at about the age of 38, which seemed older than necessary.  Fred Rump, who has some knowledge of life in Germany, makes some points which might amplify on this.

Until one reached the level of Master within a guild, one could not claim the occupation.  And it was not up to him to determine whether he became a member of the guild.  Admission was strictly controlled by the existing members of the guild, who were all Masters, and who sometimes did not want any more competition.  They might have a quota, saying there would be no more than five Masters in their district.  Until one of these died, there could be no more people admitted as members.  Even though you might be as well trained as an existing member of a guild, you could not claim the occupation, nor hang out your shingle, or set up a shop for the purpose of conducting business.

Generally, everyone in a village was a farmer.  Some individuals might have been skilled at one of several trades, and have reached the Journeyman level.  Even at this level they were not guaranteed work.  They had to travel around and find a Master who wanted to take on a Journeyman.  Sometimes this was dependent upon the Master having a large job to do, which required additional help.  Otherwise, it was a matter of working on the farm.

Even after completing all of the work of a Journeyman, including executing his masterpiece and passing his examination, advancement to the Master level was not automatic.  The guild had to take him in as a member.  Until they did this, one was out in the cold.

We do know that a significant percentage of the people around Siegen emigrated, in the year 1709, to America (New York).  Perhaps the percentage was higher in the Siegen area than in any other area of Germany.  This may be taken as an indication that the economic life of the region was depressed, and this may have made the existing members of the Guild of Steelsmiths and Toolmakers reluctant to admit more members.  In turn, Johannes Jacob Richter may have turned these things over in his mind and listened more closely to Johann Justus Albrecht, who appeared in 1710, and was recruiting people to go to Virginia.  Albrecht, besides recruiting "miners", was also charged with purchasing tools.  To have a man who could make the tools would be an advantage.

Fred adds that when his ancestor came to America, he obtained work as a carpenter for which he had been in training.  In America, the only question was a matter of skill, not of any formalities such as membership in guilds.
(12 Feb 01)


Nr. 1094:

Very recently, a small book came into our home.  It is entitled "August Sander", and describes a famous twentieth century German photographer.  The book develops the fact that he was born in the Siegen area, and lived there for the first twenty years of his life.  The book talks a bit about the events around Siegen, especially before the time of Sander, who lived from 1876 to 1964.

The type of society to be found around Siegen was different.  Up to the middle of the nineteenth century, the region was independent.  It was a community of steelworkers, miners, and others who worked in a cooperative way.  Two hundred years earlier, say in the 1600’s, the ruler had been William of Orange.  He had to sell the hunting, fishing, forestry, and mining rights because of financial problems.  (I believe because of work in achieving/preserving the independence of the Netherlands from Spain.)  The local residents bought the mining and forestry rights.  Of these two, the forestry rights were the more important, because of the great need for wood to make charcoal.  With charcoal, they made iron and steel.

(Recently, we saw some of this reflected in the Haubergs which almost every head of household in Trupbach owned.  This was a major asset of the families.  These Haubergs were a community effort, requiring close cooperation.  This cooperation extended to other areas as well.)  The region was producing wealth, and it was being shared by the inhabitants.  The miners were part owners, or profit sharers, in the system.  They were also part-time farmers.  (Apparently, at Trupbach itself, the citizens engaged in two activities, the production of wood and farming.  A few of them, for example, Johann Jacob Richter, are mentioned as engaged in the metal working trades.)

In the middle of the 1800’s, some of the best steel in Germany, but of a limited quantity, was made in the Siegen area.  The mass production of steel took place in the Ruhr, where coke was used in place of charcoal.  When the railroads came into existence, it became easier to get coal into the Siegen area.  The big companies flooded into the area and bought as much land and mineral rights as they could from the people.

It was during the 1800’s that the underground mines beneath Trupbach were developed.  The combination of capital and technology made possible what had not been done before.  So for a while, Trupbach became a mining town with a large work force engaged in the mining.  The view of Trupbach today is suburbia and farming.

Other towns in the area had more mining and smelting before 1800 than Trupbach did.  Their ore was more accessible.  Eisern and Eisenfeld, neighboring villages in a valley just south of Siegen, had iron mines.  Müsen to the north had a large iron mine.

Just because a family was from one of these towns, it is not an indication that its members were miners or iron processors.  The Hofmanns from Eisern seem to be carpenters.  Though mining and iron working are mentioned often for the region, the economy was still very mixed.
(13 Feb 01)


Nr. 1095:

It was my pleasure to hear Roger P. Minert, who spoke at the Palatines to America Conference in Pennsylvania last fall.  If I can, I will try to repeat a bit of what he said.  Dr. Minert is an American who does a lot of genealogical research in Germany and in Austria.  In the following account, he tells a bit of what he learned as he was researching his own family in the region of Western Hannover, Oldenburg, and Westphalia.

In this area a set of land ownership practices developed which had their roots prior to the Carolinian Era.  By 1500, the practices were set, and remained so until early in the nineteenth century.  The core of the landed property was The Hof, or estate farm, which could not be subdivided.  The youngest son or daughter inherited everything.  Other siblings inherited nothing.  This had the force of law, not just practice.

Sons on the farm who did not inherit the farm changed their name.  Whereas they might have had the name Meiner, they changed their name to Meinersmann, after their youngest sibling inherited the farm.  The result was that only one family had the name of the Hof.  What if a daughter inherited the Hof?  When she married, her husband took the name of the Hof.  Her brothers could no longer use the name of the farm alone.

More than one family might live on the farm and they had different statuses.  The "Vollerbe" had the full rights.  There was also a "Halberbe" who had half-rights, and the Erbkötter and the Markkötter.  The last position is the easiest to explain.  The owner of this position had a cottage, gardens, and another job off the farm.  He was essentially just renting a house and gardens.  The person in this position might be one of the sons who had not inherited.

But before you think the Vollerbe was an entity unto himself, consider the limitations on him.  The next man above him in the social structure was the Gutsherr (estate owner, laird).  The Vollerbe had to have the permission of his Gutsherr to marry, harvest trees, or build new structures.  He had to pay a fee to the Gutsherr to marry, and at his death the family had to pay a death tax of one-half of what he owned.  If the Vollerbe mismanaged the estate, he could lose it to the Gutsherr.  He could not leave the farm without the permission of the Gutsherr.

The local government was the Mark council.  As a Vollerbe, one had more votes in the council and more rights in the common property owned by the council.  The Vollerbe did not have to serve in the military.  His tenancy was protected if he managed the property well.

The surname went with the Hof, not with one’s biological father or mother.  We see that this had the potential to create problems in genealogical research.  A man’s name could change between birth and death.  One needed to know how the property was inherited and especially whom the youngest sibling married.
(14 Feb 01)


Nr. 1096:

Some questions were asked about the last note which I really can’t answer, but I will try.  Craig Kilby asked what would happen if a Meinersmann had to change his name because his sister inherited the farm.  I am sure it would not go to Meinersmannmann.  But I might ask if a person who was disinherited, and thereby became a Meinersmann, would ever be faced with the problem.  Craig also noted that in the case of his ancestor (the youngest daughter) that her brothers did not change their name.  Practices did vary with the region.  (In Trupbach, Hans Jacob Richter, who sold his house, did so under his wife’s maiden name of Fischbach.  That is, he signed the deed as Hans Jacob Fischbach.)

Lee Hoffman asks about the meaning of Hoffman.  A Hofmann could mean a courtier who attended to a prince at the court, or could mean a villein* farmer (approximately a free peasant), or could mean a steward in a mansion.

(*Villein:  usually, a class of feudal serfs who held the legal status of freemen in their dealings with all people except their Lord.  GWD, Webmaster)

To continue with more comments about the Hof of the last note, there were set fees and duties on the Hof, which were assessed and collected annually by the Gutsherr.  This could be a mixed bag of money, goods, and services.  Two beef cattle might have to be handed over.  And so many "bushels" of grain might be due.  There could be a specified number of days of labor, with or without a team of draft animals.  As an alternative to the goods, some monies might be due.

It was not exactly a free country.  To leave the Hof or even the Mark (the district), a fee would have to be paid to the Gutsherr.  In part, the aim was to provide a stable population while allowing some freedom to move (and providing some income to the Gutsherr).  Typical fees to leave were a year’s income.  On the other hand, the freedom could be procured before a child’s third birthday at a very low fee.  In essence, the child was not a citizen of the Mark.  If later, he wanted to become a citizen of the Mark, it would be necessary to purchase citizenship.

One of the most onerous fees paid to the Gutsherr was the death tax, which was 50 percent of the value of the movable chattels.  This was paid in coin, not in goods, and could prove to be a real burden on the family.  Attempts were made to circumvent this tax by transferring property to the children before death.  (So what is new in the world?)

The Meinert Hof consisted of about 120 acres.  The inhabitants of the Richterhof in 1772 were as follows:  In the main house there lived Caspar Richter, his wife, one son over 14, two sons under 14, one servant, and one maid.  Caspar Richter was the owner of the Hof.  The retired owner was the widow Gastmann with apparently four people with her.  In a cottage, lived Jürgen Middelberg, a laborer, his wife, one son, and three daughters.  In another cottage, lived the sawyer Brömstrup with his wife and four children.  In another cottage, Mathias Voights (farm laborer), his wife, four children lived.
(15 Feb 01)


Nr. 1097:

The Hof system that I have been talking about was not universal in Germany.  The area of application was relatively small.  Still, similar things to some degree were practiced in other component parts of the lands which became Germany.

Within its principal area, it provided social stability.  Everyone knew just what to expect.  There were no surprises.

A succession of eight male owners at one Hof involved seven name changes as the daughter inherited and married an outsider who took the Hof name.

This system developed before church records were kept.  Titles and names became confused.  For example, reference might be made to "der Meinert" meaning the man who owned the Meinert Hof.  To keep track of the male name changes, expressions such as "Meyer genannt Meinert", meaning "Meyer who is called Meinert", came into being.  The birth name Meyer might come and go even unto death.  Children were christened with the Hof surname.  Very often the Hof owner passed ownership to the marrying heir or heiress and moved into the "Leibzucht Haus".  This was the house for the retired person(s) in the family.  The retired owner might be called "der alte Meinert" (male) or "die alte Meinert (female)".  Some surname variants included examples such as Meinerts Johann.

These records, from the Hofs, are usually kept in the state archives.  If your research does take you into this type of record, you will encounter terms and practices that probably are not familiar.  A few of the terms are given here just for the illustration they shed on life:

Abgaben:  Duties paid to the Gutsherr, usually in goods and services.

Auffahrt:  The process of marrying into a Hof, required the Gutsherr's permission and a fee.

colon/alias/modo:  A change in man's surname.

Colon/Colonus:  A title used to denote the owner of a Hof (note the resemblance to "colony").

Freibrief:  A license issued by the Gutsherr for a fee, entitling a son or daughter to leave the Hof.

Guttsherr:  Person or organization (church or state) holding authority over a Mark.

Mark:  A district presided over by the Gutsherr.

Meyerhof:  An estate farm established for defense purposes, which had its own rules.

You may want to hire a professional genealogist who is skilled at these researches.  If you get the history worked out, it will make a good tale.
(16 Feb 01)


Nr. 1098:

How long did the Germanna community last?  Let’s put it this way, the first time that a Communion Service at the Lutheran Church was held in English was about 1814.  Or putting it another way, this was almost ninety years after the Germans moved to the Robinson River Valley.  They held on to the old ways for quite a while.

A story that is told, when Rev. William Carpenter was the pastor (1787 to 1814), was that he had suggested to the elders that he preach some of the sermons in English.  Emphatically, they told him to use only German, not only in his sermons, but outside the church in the community also.  Apparently, before his pastorate ended, he did preach some in English.  Whether the story is true or not, there was a conflict over what language was to be used.

There were two groups that favored the continued use of German.  There were several new arrivals about the time of the Revolution.  These people had not learned English yet.  The other group was the very conservative element from the original group.  To take one man as an example, Zacharias Blankenbühler, the son of John Nicholas, was born in Germany.  He died only after Madison County was formed.  Toward the end of the Eighteenth Century, there were individuals such as Zacharias who grew up on the German language.  They taught their children to speak German.  Some of these individuals were very conservative and they opposed change.  They were in positions of power at the Church.  Those who could speak English found a home in the Baptist churches which were springing up.

This was not an isolated case.  Over in the Shenandoah Valley, the use of the German language continued for much longer.  Newspapers were printed there in German until the middle of the nineteenth century (I believe).  The conflict on which language was to be used nearly killed some churches.  One side or the other was dissatisfied and often left.  The remaining members, usually German speaking, were dying.  And as they did so, the churches fell on lean times.  The adage, that one must adapt to survive, was lost on them.  Surely, they could see the handwriting.  One of their major arguments was probably that there were members who could only speak German.

The conflict in the German churches was usually resolved in the following way.  When it was decided to introduce English, it was tolerated on a once per month schedule.  Then it would be that the two languages would alternate weeks.  In a last gasp, German would be used only once per month.

The Lutheran Church advertised for a minister after Rev. Carpenter left; they asked for someone who could preach in both languages.  Rev. Carpenter went to Northern Kentucky, where a group from the Robinson River Valley had already gone.  I believe that he used the German language there.
(17 Feb 01)


Nr. 1099:

Evaluating evidence is a task unto itself.  The information may have been recorded with full attention to getting it right, and perhaps it was correctly recorded.  Sometimes though we are left wondering what the written word means.  My favorite example is the set of information called the Culpeper Classes.

We have more than fourteen hundred names set down rather carefully.  What does the presence of a name here mean?  One viewpoint is that the presence here indicates a man was a member of the militia, and that he performed service in the cause of the Revolution.  Another view is that names appeared without regard to the desires of the individual; he had no choice in the matter.  In this latter view the list of names is nothing more than a draft list.

We might start by looking at how the men themselves viewed this draft.  It was part of an operation by the state of Virginia to raise men for duty with the Army.  Of the 106 men who were designated or selected in Culpeper County, 4 apparently volunteered for the duration of the war, 47 agreed to serve for 18 months, 29 of them were drafted or conscripted, 12 refused to serve, 12 absconded, and 2 were sick.  We have no knowledge of which of the 106 men did what (within the Culpeper Class lists themselves).

The figures above are misleading.  First, many of the men who were selected hired someone else to take their place.  The figures above are for the final man and obscure the initial selection or draft who may have hired someone else to take his place.  Several of the classes (thirteen or fourteen men in each) opted to avoid the draft altogether by simply having each member of the class contribute to the hiring of a substitute for the class.  One class hired a substitute, then underwent the selection process to see who in the class would get the credit for the service.

Serving in the Army was definitely not popular.  It is hard to escape the view that the men had no choice in whether their names would appear in the lists.  If selected, then many of them tried to avoid the consequences.

In some cases, the substitution of one name for another was a decision reached in a family.  Since men were not exempted for marriage or a family, a single man within a family was substituted for a married man with children.

My feeling is that the appearance of a name in the Culpeper Classes does not indicate an individual did anything for the cause of the Revolution.  A number of people who were selected did serve, and, to the extent that other sources can verify the service, then he should have credit.

But my major point is that having a primary or original record may not be what it seems to be.  In some cases, one must study the records to learn more than a possible face value of the evidence.
(19 Feb 01)


Nr. 1100:

In contrast to the opinion I expressed in the last note, I give (at the urging of Craig Kilby) some contrary views.  The question he asked pertained to the source of the people who served as alternates or substitutes for those who were selected.  To give specifics, in twenty-two classes, men were hired as substitutes, and they were not listed elsewhere in the county as members of any class.  Where did these men come from?

There are partial answers, but no complete set of answers.  Some of these ideas are guesses.  Perhaps these men had served already, and were thereby exempted from further service.  Maybe they had some excuse which exempted them from the militia, but they were willing to overlook this in return for the money they would earn as substitutes.  In one case, the man was a mulatto, who probably would not have been included in the militia, but who was accepted into service in the army.

All of the history that I have read of Colonial Virginia suggests that joining the militia was not a volunteer act, it was compulsory for able-bodied men, who were 16 to 50.  Reports to the Crown are based on this assumption.  But, if this were the case, where did the substitutes come from?  The next county over might account for a few, but most of them seem to have come from Culpeper County itself.

Perhaps there was no list of the men in the militia.  It was necessary for the officers in the militia to ride around the countryside and find out who the men were.  That the lists were composed in this way is suggested strongly by the fact that the men in any one list are nearly always close neighbors to each other (this is one of the greatest values of the lists).  It may be that, when the lists were being made up, a lot of men suddenly became nonexistent or were unknowns.  A lot of parents may have said that "John went to North Carolina and no longer lived in the area."

Perhaps there was an optional element in the militia.  It might not have been compulsory.  Perhaps some men signed up for the militia who figured they could do their military duty while staying home.

Another way of looking at the lists is to take most any family and ask if all of their men are there.  The answer has to be "No", but then one has to ask if these missing men were on active duty, or had served already.

There is no question but that men are missing from the Culpeper Classes.  There are not as many listed as should be.

Returning to the original question at the start of the previous note, we still have not answered the question of what is the significance of a name in the Culpeper Classes.  The names are there in black and white.  The original records can still be read.
(20 Feb 01)


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(To see maps of villages in Germany and Austria from which our Germanna ancestors immigrated, click here.)


(This page contains the FORTY-FOURTH set of Notes, Nr. 1076 through Nr. 1100.)


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(GERMANNA History Notes, Copyright © 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009 John BLANKENBAKER.)

(GERMANNA History Web Pages, Copyright © 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009 George W. DURMAN.)

This material has been compiled and placed on this web site by George W. Durman, with the permission of John BLANKENBAKER.  It is intended for personal use by genealogists and researchers, and is not to be disseminated further.


Index Links to All Pages of John's GERMANNA NOTES and Genealogy Comments

INDEX Links to All Pages of John's GERMANNA NOTES
Pg.001-Notes 0001-0025
Pg.002-Notes 0026-0050
Pg.003-Notes 0051-0075
Pg.004-Notes 0076-0100
Pg.005-Notes 0101-0125
Pg.006-Notes 0126-0150
Pg.007-Notes 0151-0175
Pg.008-Notes 0176-0200
Pg.009-Notes 0201-0225
Pg.010-Notes 0226-0250
Pg.011-Notes 0251-0275
Pg.012-Notes 0276-0300
Pg.013-Notes 0301-0325
Pg.014-Notes 0326-0350
Pg.015-Notes 0351-0375
Pg.016-Notes 0376-0400
Pg.017-Notes 0401-0425
Pg.018-Notes 0426-0450
Pg.019-Notes 0451-0475
Pg.020-Notes 0476-0500
Pg.021-Notes 0501-0525
Pg.022-Notes 0526-0550
Pg.023-Notes 0551-0575
Pg.024-Notes 0575-0600
Pg.025-Notes 0601-0625
Pg.026-Notes 0626-0650
Pg.027-Notes 0651-0675
Pg.028-Notes 0676-0700
Pg.029-Notes 0701-0725
Pg.030-Notes 0726-0750
Pg.031-Notes 0751-0775
Pg.032-Notes 0776-0800
Pg.033-Notes 0801-0825
Pg.034-Notes 0826-0850
Pg.035-Notes 0851-0875
Pg.036-Notes 0876-0900
Pg.037-Notes 0901-0925
Pg.038-Notes 0926-0950
Pg.039-Notes 0951-0975
Pg.040-Notes 0976-1000
Pg.041-Notes 1001-1025
Pg.042-Notes 1026-1050
Pg.043-Notes 1051-1075
Pg.044-Notes 1076-1100
Pg.045-Notes 1101-1125
Pg.046-Notes 1126-1150
Pg.047-Notes 1151-1175
Pg.048-Notes 1176-1200
Pg.049-Notes 1201-1225
Pg.050-Notes 1226-1250
Pg.051-Notes 1251-1275
Pg.052-Notes 1276-1300
Pg.053-Notes 1301-1325
Pg.054-Notes 1326-1350
Pg.055-Notes 1351-1375
Pg.056-Notes 1376-1400
Pg.057-Notes 1401-1425
Pg.058-Notes 1426-1450
Pg.059-Notes 1451-1475
Pg.060-Notes 1476-1500
Pg.061-Notes 1501-1525
Pg.062-Notes 1526-1550
Pg.063-Notes 1551-1575
Pg.064-Notes 1576-1600
Pg.065-Notes 1601-1625
Pg.066-Notes 1626-1650
Pg.067-Notes 1651-1675
Pg.068-Notes 1676-1700
Pg.069-Notes 1701-1725
Pg.070-Notes 1726-1750
Pg.071-Notes 1751-1775
Pg.072-Notes 1776-1800
Pg.073-Notes 1801-1825
Pg.074-Notes 1826-1850
Pg.075-Notes 1851-1875
Pg.076-Notes 1876-1900
Pg.077-Notes 1901-1925
Pg.078-Notes 1926-1950
Pg.079-Notes 1951-1975
Pg.080-Notes 1976-2000
Pg.081-Notes 2001-2025
Pg.082-Notes 2026-2050
Pg.083-Notes 2051-2075
Pg.084-Notes 2076-2100
Pg.085-Notes 2101-2125
Pg.086-Notes 2126-2150
Pg.087-Notes 2150-2175
Pg.088-Notes 2176-2200
Pg.089-Notes 2201-2225
Pg.090-Notes 2226-2250
Pg.091-Notes 2251-2275
Pg.092-Notes 2276-2300
Pg.093-Notes 2301-2325
Pg.094-Notes 2326-2350
Pg.095-Notes 2351-2375
Pg.096-Notes 2376-2400
Pg.097-Notes 2401-2425
Pg.098-Notes 2426-2450
Pg.099-Notes 2451-2475
Pg.100-Notes 2476-2500
Pg.101-Comments 0001-0025


INDEX Links to All Pages of John's GENEALOGY COMMENTS

(As of 12 April 2007, John published the last of his "Germanna Notes"; however, he is going to periodically post to the GERMANNA_COLONIES Mailing List in the form of "Genealogy Comments" on various subjects, not necessarily dealing with Germanna.  I'm starting the numbering system anew, starting with Comment Nr. 0001.)

Pg.101-Comments 0001-0025

This Page Contains Notes 1076 through 1100.


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