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This is the SIXTY-FIRST 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.

(See bottom of this page for Links to all Notes pages.)
This Page Contains Notes 1501 through 1525.

GERMANNA History Notes
Page 61

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Nr. 1501:

Hard to believe, isn't it?  The numbers just keep rolling along and we have reached 1,501!  About the only fixed rule that I have in writing these notes is to take time out on the half century marks to tell, in general way, what I hope to accomplish.

A primary objective is to make the List interesting so that significant number of people will join the List.  A secondary objective is to encourage people to participate.

I would hope that other people will pick up on the family histories.  When the John Yagers are discussed, that is the List at its best.

The next best thing is to ask questions, especially those that will start a discussion.

Along the way, I hope to develop a better understanding of our German ancestors who lived on the east side of the Blue Ridge Mountains in Virginia in the eighteenth century.  Who were they?  Where did they come from?  Why did they come?  What did they find here?  How did they cope with the new situation?

A lot of what could be said to answer these questions applies to all Germans, or perhaps to all emigrants.  And, because they moved around quite a bit, the geography need not be all that exact.

Our history is very rich and there are a lot of documents that apply to us.  There are many questions that will never be answered, but that is no excuse to stop trying to find the answers.  There are many methodologies to use.

With these statements, I close on the note that the List is meant to be a two-way street.
(17 Oct 02)



Nr. 1502:

The Act passed by the Virginia Assembly in 1720 creating the two, new Counties of Spotsylvania and Brunswick, originally called for the remission of public levies for ten years for anyone taking up land in these Counties.  The Act did not specify what the public levies were.  As with legislation passed in Virginia, it was necessary to have approval from England before the Act could be considered "solid".  The people of Virginia often proceeded on the basis that acts which they passed would be approved.  In the case of the new Counties, it was rather unusual legislation.  Spotswood, who was still Lt. Governor then, accepted applications for land, but did not issue patents immediately.  In the Spring of 1722 he decided to go ahead, as his term of office was probably drawing to a close.  His successor might not be so lenient.  Of course, he was one of the major beneficiaries of the legislation.

The officials in London were generous, but they did place some restrictions on the lands to be taken up.  The ten years of the original Act were reduced to seven years.  They did allow the omission of both the purchase price and the quit rents, as had been hoped in Virginia.  They did set a limit of 1000 acres per person.  The instructions from London were silent on another question.  If land had been patented in these Counties before 1720, was it entitled to the relief from quit rents, and was it entitled to repayment of the purchase price.  Spotswood had about 85,000 acres in the new Spotsylvania County and about half of this had been patented prior to the legislation.  The new land he had taken up amounted to at least 40,000 acres.

This is one of the questions that took Lt. Gov. Drysdale's attention.  And it led to a long personal battle for Spotswood, whose land titles were in doubt.  Finally, he went back to England to plead his case (and to get married).

There is no doubt that the legislation had been hatched in Spotswood's brain as a way of getting lots of land for free.  It might have been considered personal legislation, a private bill, as I believe it is sometimes called.

The Second Colony members were beneficiaries of the legislation.  They obtained their land for free and did not have to pay quit rents for a few years.  In the First Colony, Holtzclaw (680 acres) and Fishback (400 acres) were able to take advantage of the law by taking some land in the Little Fork.  Also, John Hoffman obtained an 800-acre tract in the Robinson River Valley on 27 Sept 1729, without having to pay the purchase price.  That was a nice start, but a lot of hard work was involved before the land was productive.
(18 Oct 02)



Nr. 1503:

Major Drysdale wrote to the Commissioners for Trade and Plantation on 14 Feb 1724 (NS).  He reported on the action taken,

"...to remedy current abuses in the survey of land whereby the payment of quit rents was avoided, changes in the existing arrangements for sale by auction of the tobacco handed in as payment of quit rents, a proclamation issued repealing the Act passed in 1720 for the better government of the imported Convicts in accordance with the order of the Privy Council and the receipt of the decision agreeing to the remittance of quit rent and land rights in the two new frontier counties for a stated time."
Drysdale's next letter to the Board seems to be one of 6 June 1724.  He reported that his predecessor,
"...Col. Spotswood, had granted very large parcels of land in the two newly created Counties (especially in Spotsylvania) to patentees, without giving proof of Rights but obliged them to sign unusual bonds of little real value, that instead of limiting grants to a maximum of 1000 per applicant, Col. Spotswood had granted up to 40,000 acres to an individual [i.e., himself, indirectly], that Col. Spotswood had thus acquired large areas of land for himself and asking for guidance as to his policy in dealing with the matter.  (Drysdale) also reported that some 125,000 acres of previously settled land had been deliberately included in the bounds of the new County of Spotsylvania so as to obtain benefit of the remission of quit rents etc."
[This letter made it to London in two months, a typical east-bound time, which was shorter than the west-bound time due to the Gulf Stream current.]

An investigation showed that on 23 December 1720, when the Act for the creation of the two new Counties was passed, that application was made for nine tracts totaling 91,500 acres.  [I believe that these applications were made on the same day that the Act passed.  Obviously there had been some advance planning.]

Shortly after these letters from Drysdale, the Board urged that Spotswood appear before them and explain his actions.  He did go, and pursued the title to his land in Virginia.  Data began to flow into London on Spotswood's land acquisitions.  There was a copy of a patent to John Clayton, Thomas Jones, & Richard Hickman, in trust for Col. Spotswood, for 40.000 acres of land in Spotsylvania County.  [I have plotted this and it is closer to 65,000 acres than to 40,000 acres.]

Richard Hickman sent a statement that Col. Spotswood had 86,650 acres of land in Spotsylvania County.

Major Drysdale had a hard time trying to sort through the decisions of the Privy Council in London, and the actions that had been taken in Virginia.

[Incidentally, the Second Colony people had been living on the 40,000 acre tract since early 1718.]

One of the techniques used to avoid Quit Rents was "delayed filing".  A portion of the 40,000 acre tract had been claimed by Robert Beverley since at least 1710.
(19 Oct 02)



Nr. 1504:

Col. Alexander Spotswood's land acquisitions brought him a peck of trouble.  He was urged to visit England and appear before the Board of Trade and Plantations.  In a letter dated 16 June 1724, he explained to the Board that he had been unable to get passage on a warship and he was afraid to travel on a merchant ship.  His fears were founded on the extensive campaign he had conducted against pirates.  If he were to travel on an unarmed merchant ship, he was afraid the pirates might try to take him prisoner.  He also explained that he was engaged in a naval stores project, which was also contributing to his delay.  But he added that he hoped to go northwards incognito and catch a ship there.  One of the things he said that he hoped to accomplish in England was to protest the false accusations made against his character by a carpenter, Larken Chew, who had obtained the confidence of Major Drysdale, the new Lt. Gov. of Virginia.  Spotswood's letter, of 16 June 1724, was received in London 2 September 1724.  In about three months, Spotswood appeared before the Board in London and asked that he be notified if any thing came before them which pertained to him.

Before he had written to the Board in June, Spotswood had written a letter to Col. Nathaniel Harrison, who was the Deputy Auditor of Virginia.  This is absolutely necessary reading for a descendant of the First and Second Germanna Colonists who are trying to understand the events that happened in those first dozen years or so.  Maybe in the future, we can go through it here.  [I probably have done so in the past but it wouldn't hurt to do so again.]

In this time period, say 1724, pirates were still active.  Three merchant ships of England were captured by Spanish pirates.  Also, the year 1724 was not a good year weather-wise.  First, there was a drought, which limited the production of corn.  Second, there was a violent storm on 12 August, which damaged the tobacco crop severely.  To counteract the scarcity of corn, an Act was passed which prohibited the export of corn.  This was an attempt to keep all of the corn there was for consumption in the Colony.

The next summer (1725), Drysdale could report excellent prospects for tobacco and corn, and the restrictions on the export of corn were lifted.

In December of 1725, the Attorney General of England explained to the Board of Trade why he had not issued a report on the land acquisitions in Virginia, especially those of Col. Spotswood.  The Colonel had appeared before the Attorney General and asked that no report be issued until he had an opportunity of presenting his side of the case.

If you observe that:

1. The pace was sometimes very leisurely,
2. No action was taken without getting opinions, public and private,

I think you would be correct.
(21 Oct 02)



Nr. 1505:

To encourage Craig Kilby with those books he is going to write, here is a little more on Larken Chew.  At one time, it appears that Chew and Spotswood were friendly.  This would be about 1712 and 1713.

When Christoph Graffenried came up to Virginia from North Carolina in 1712, he had in mind doing two things.  First he wanted to find the silver mines that Franz Michel said he had found.  Second, Graffenried wanted to find a location where he could relocate the remnants of his North Carolina colony.  He explored roughly the same geographical area for both purposes.  This started at the falls on the Potomac River just above present day Washington, DC, and went upstream from there.

Lt. Gov. Spotswood explained to Graffenried that this was not a safe place for a European to be.  He sent out a militia guard under Capt. Larken Chew to protect Graffenried.  It would be safe to presume that Graffenried and Chew talked about what Graffenried was doing.  From his writings, it appears that Graffenried was not reticent about telling people that he thought there was silver in Virginia, or in Maryland, or in Pennsylvania.  (No one was too sure where the state boundaries were, so the silver could have been in any on the three states.)

Then, the next April, Larken Chew was selling fractional interests in about a six-square-mile piece of land.  The deeds are recorded in the Essex County books.  Spotswood bought a one-quarter interest in this property for 45 Pounds.  Graffenried bought a one-sixteenth interest in this same property.  Other people bought fractional shares, and Chew was left as the owner of a fractional share himself.

This mine was about four to five miles from the future Fort Germanna.  This was the mine that Spotswood was so excited about in writing to Col. Blakiston, so excited that Blakiston undertook to send forty odd Germans on to Virginia to work in these mines.

Graffenried, in his writings, makes it clear that he and Spotswood had a common interest in a silver mine.  It could only refer to this particular mine.

This is the mine from which John Fontaine took minerals and attempted to assay them during the trip across the Blue Ridge Mountain.  Fontaine was very negative about the prospects of recovering any silver.  In fact, this was the beginning of the end of the silver mine, and the end of Spotswood's 45 Pounds of money which he had paid to Larken Chew.

What we do not know is what was Chew's role in this transaction.  Did Chew patent a piece of ground and start selling shares?  At first, he had to do a little marketing, but Graffenried's appearance may have helped tremendously.  Perhaps Graffenried got his own small share in return for his promotion of the silver mine.  Or was Chew merely the 'straw man' to disguise the real owners?  Spotswood never liked to issue land as Governor directly to himself as a private party.  It didn't look right.
(22 Oct 02)



Nr. 1506:

It is time to give center stage to the late Lt. Gov. of Virginia, Alexander Spotswood.  The time is early May in 1726.  The stage is the King's Most Excellent Majesty In Council.  Spotswood has the floor to present his petition.

Act I of Spotswood before His Majesty

He humbly sheweth,
"That your Petitioner, during his Administration of the said Government, being led by a publick Spirit & a dutiful Regard to your Majy's Pleasure, did upon receiving Directions, from ye Lord Commissioners for Trade and Plantations, for making Hemp & Tar; & also upon seeing your Maty's Speech to ye Parliament, for raising Naval Stores in the Plantations, judge it incumbent on him to promote the same with his Province.

"That design he incouraged the forming of Companies & Partnerships, for carrying on such undertakings, & deeply embarked himself with some Adventurers [i.e., partners taking a risk]; who entered so far into the Project as to be at Several Thousand pounds Charge in the Clearing and Seating large tracts of ye Crown's Desarts-Lands [i.e., undeveloped lands], & in importing materials and proper Workmen, for raising all manner of Naval Stores.

"That this grand undertaking proving to be attended with greater Difficulties, than his partners had Courage or Ability longer to struggle with, your Petitioner, while he was Governor ventured to take ye whole concern upon himself rather than such a laudable attempt should be given over [i.e., given up], to ye certain discouragement of other Adventurers; & so having reimbursed his Partners ye utmost penny of their Expenses, & after an excessive deal of Pains, Risque, & Charge, brought ye Undertakings such a length, as to ship home the first Pig-Iron, & ye first Hemp of Virginia growth, that were known to be imported into Great Britain:  Besides proving by Experience that in these american Parts, neither ye Tar can be made according to ye directions of ye act of Parliament, without ye peculiar Skill of Finland Tar-Burners, or the Hemp ever be raised to any perfection from the English, or East Country Seed.

"That not only such Discoveries, made at your Petitioner's Sole-Cost, may be deemed a Public Benefit but also ye . . . .  of his labor are found to be valuable to ye Nation; and his . . . iron has          . . . . Iron-Masters in England who have hitherto make trial thereof, and now Hemp is proved to be considerably Superior to the best Russian, . . . . with the best Riga Hemp as my appear by the Report from ye officers at Woolwich yard . . . of your Maty Navy."

[Note:  The copy is extremely hard to read, since far too much ink was used, and it bleed through the fibers of the paper.]

[to be continued]

(23 Oct 02)



Nr. 1507:

Act II of Spotswood before His Majesty

"And your Petitioner is (placed?) under the (burden?) of Representing that, according to the Plan laid down by the aforesaid Partners for carrying on so extensive a Design, there had been Taken up, Surveyed, and Patented considerable Tracts of some remote and ungranted Lands in which no other subject, than your Petitioner, has at this time any pretense of Right; yet for certain Formalities omitted in passing ye Patent He finds his Title to part of those lands may hereafter be controverted, without your Majesty's special Grace in now confirming them all to him.

"And to the end your Petitioner may appear (to be no special?) object of your Royal Justice & Favour on this occasion, He humbly begs leave to observe, That he has already very dearly purchased those lands from his Partners, & fully complyed with ye law of ye Colony in (providing?) sufficient Improvements (to the land?).  That they being such lands which for their Remoteness & dangerous Situation, nobody had before dared to venture upon, your Petitioner has been obliged to Seat them with a formidable Strength, & so run a mighty Risque, as well as been at an extraordinary charge, in maintaining Possession of them, until he happily obtained of the Five Nations of Indians to relinquish their pretensions thereto:  and that to accomplish this point, he Travelled twelve Hundred miles, & not only underwent the Fatique of a Three Months Expedition, but also has Six hundred Pounds of the Expense thereof, which he had never yet been reimbursed, or in any wise . . . . considered . . .

"That he moreover remains to this day in disburse the like sum of Expenses, for his performing ye Conditions of certain treaties made in the year 1713 with Three Nations of Indians, and being laid before Her late Majesty, approved of, & assurances given that the charge thereof should be defrayed by the Crown.

"And . . . . that your petitioner not only, in his Treaty with ye said Five Nations, obtained of them to give to your Majesty their Pretensions to all ye Lands which they claimed between the Potowmach and James Rivers, but also, by new Regulations of his own forming while he was Governor, so improved His Maty's Revenue of Quit Rents in Virginia, that from an annual income of about One Thousand Pounds, they have been augmented to Three thousand Pounds per annum.

"Wherefore your Petitioner humbly Prays that -------"

[Curtain]
(24 Oct 02)



Nr. 1508:

Act III of Spotswood before His Majesty

Spotswood summarized his petition by:

1) reciting all of the good things that he had done for the King, and,
2) what it has cost him personally.

He claimed that he not been reimbursed for twelve hundred pounds of expenses of his own money spent on behalf of the Crown.  He claimed that he had added three million acres of land to the Crown's possession.  Also, he had improved His Majesty's Revenue from the quit rents.  He had also fulfilled the King's wish for the Plantations to produce naval stores, and this had been done at his own expense.

In return for all these good things that he had done for the Crown, he asked that the King grant him title to 86,000 acres of land that were in his possession now, and not claimed by anyone else.  He added that the predecessors had granted much larger tracts than this to others upon fewer motives or considerations.

Though the petition of Spotswood was undated, it was filed at the Board of Trade next to a note from the Earl of Orkney, dated 5 May 1726.

So, what did the King do?  The first thing he would do is to ask everyone to make a written report.  A report from the Attorney General would be needed, and from the Treasurer, and from the Board of Trade.  All of these people would have to hold hearings and invite others to testify before them.  What did George himself do?  He died in 1727.  Back to square one for Spotswood.

It would be a few years yet before a final decision was reached.

In his petition, Spotswood placed an emphasis on the naval stores project.  Gaining land and resources for the naval stores project was supposedly the reason behind the decision, essentially reached before the trip across the Blue Ridge Mountains, to acquire a large quantity of western lands.  The trip across the Blue Ridge actually had as it main objective the exploration of the lands that Spotswood might take up.  The decisions fell into place just before the Second Germanna Colony landed and were settled on the 40,000 acre tract, to pursue, among other things, naval stores.  Actually, the decision was reached before the Germans arrived, but the lack of settlers delayed the project; however, Capt. Tarbett, aware of Spotswood's desire, was able to provide a shipload of Germans.  With these people, the naval stores project was launched on the 40,000 acre tract, to which no one had even yet filed.  To pay for the land, Spotswood dreamed up the idea of free land.  He did not file on the land until five years (1717 to 1722) after the Germans had been living on it.  He did not get a clear title for ten years after the filing.

[Final Curtain]

(25 Oct 02)



Nr. 1509:

(Gregorian Calendar, Old Style [OS], and New Style [NS], and relationship to dates of events concerning the Germanna Colonists.)

Julius Caesar saw that the calendar then in use needed reforming.  He told his astronomer, Sosigenes to design a new calendar without using the moon, a bold step in itself.  Sosigenes, an Alexandrian Greek from Egypt, said that the year was 365.250 days long.  This was close, but not right on.  The solar year was 11 minutes and 14 seconds shorter than this value.  By the time the Sixteenth Century rolled around, it was obvious that there was a difference between the Calendar Year, figured at 365.250 days, and the Solar Year at 365.248 days.  By the Sixteenth Century, the shortest day of the year by the Calendar was occurring 10 days later than actual Astronomical Observations.

In the Julian Calendar, every fourth year was a Leap Year, with 366 days to account for the 0.25O fraction in the length of the assumed Solar Year.  Pope Gregory XIII, being made aware of the difference between Sosigenes' 365.250-day year, and the actual Solar Year of 365.248 days, took the lead and saw that it would be necessary to change the rules for Leap Years.  By the Sixteenth Century, to get the Solar and the Calendar Years back in sync, it would be necessary to drop, or omit, ten days from the calendar then in use.

Gregory's new rules for the Leap Years were that years evenly divisible by 400 would be Leap Years.  Years divisible by 100, but not by 400, would not be Leap Years.  Years divisible by 4 would be Leap Years, if they fell outside the two rules just given.  The Gregorian Calendar became effective on October 5, 1582, which was followed by October 15, and the new rules for Leap Years went into effect.  Also, January 1 became New Year's Day (NS).  More exactly, the Catholic world made this change, while the Protestant world kept to the old calendar (OS), in which March 25 was New Year's Day.  The German world gradually switched to the NS, some regions taking more than a hundred years to change.  (Russia and Turkey did not switch until the Twentieth Century.)

From 1582 to 1752, in the English-speaking world, there was a general recognition that there were two calendars.  In calendars, the Julian became known as the Old Style and the Gregorian became known as New Style.  Not only were the days different (up to 1700, there was a ten-day difference, and after 1700 there was an eleven-day difference).  From January 1 to March 24, there was also a difference in the year.  In this range of days, the New Style calendar was one year ahead of the Old Style calendar because of the difference in New Years Day.

When the conversion was made from the Old Style to New Style calendars in 1752, there were many people who felt that eleven days had literally been taken away from them.  There would eleven days less in their life.

Though we say that George Washington was born on February 22, his mother would have said he was born on February 11.  I suppose that she should know as she was probably there.  But even more than this eleven day difference, there was also a difference in the year that his mother would have said and what we would say today.
(26 Oct 02)



Nr. 1510:

The failure to distinguish the New Style Calendar from the Old Style Calendar leads to errors of history.  Suppose that someone told you the iron mine land that eventually became Spotswood's was patented in February of 1719.  If the report does not have the information of whether this was the Old Style or the New Style calendar, then you would not know in which year by the modern calendar (the New Style) the patent was issued.  (1719 was actually Old Style.)

The best thing to do for days between January 1 and March 24, in the period where there were both New and Old Style Calendars, is to say whether the year is determined by the Old Style or the New Style Calendar.  A failure to do so may lead to an error.  OS and NS are often used as abbreviations.  An alternative is to express the date as, for example, 1717/18.

For simplicity, many dates are given by the modern calendar.  For example, we say that George Washington was born in 1732 even though the calendar at his birth said 1731.  But we must be aware of the two calendars to judge the relative time of two events.  It has been observed that the first meeting of the Orange County Court was before the county was formed.  This comes about because, by the Old Calendar, the dates from 1 Jan to March 24 in a given year are actually later than the dates from March 25 to December 31.

We have an interesting problem with a group of Germans who said they arrived in 1717.  Whose calendar are they using?  Probably, in Germany, from where they departed, the calendar was the New Style Calendar.  On arriving in Virginia they find that the calendar was the Old Style Calendar.  Which calendar do they use?  The one from Germany or the one which is used in Virginia?

Let us say that they adopted the ways of Virginia and used the Old Style Calendar.  In it, the year 1717 extends, or goes, to March 24.  So, if they arrive on February 1, and adopt the English calendar in effect at that time, they would say they arrived in 1717.  Today we would be more inclined to say they arrived in 1718.  So, if we wanted to celebrate the 300th anniversary of their arrival, we should do so in 2018.

I think it is very probably that the Second Germanna Colony did arrive in 1718 by the modern calendar.  The circumstantial evidence of the date of their leaving Germany is that it was in July, July 12, to be more exact.  This is the date that the pastor in Gemmingen noted that six families from his parish were going to Pennsylvania.  The trip down the Rhine River, the wait for a ship to London, finding a ship in London, then having to wait while the captain of the ship was in debtors' prison, and the long ocean voyage (ten weeks was typical) taken together make it improbable that they would have arrived before December 31.

Klaus Wust said, "The year 1717 is carved in too many pieces of stone to be changed."  He did not say 1717 was right or wrong; it simply will not be changed because too many people are thinking it is 1717.
(28 Oct 02)



Nr. 1511:

It is sometimes said that the First Germanna Colony worked at mining from March of 1716 to December of 1718.  The termination date is clear but the starting date is ambiguous.  On the Old Style Calendar there was a March which started in the year 1716 and ended in 1717.  In the year prior to this, March started with the calendar showing the year as 1715, and March ended this same year with the calendar showing 1716.  This shows how unclear the Old Style Calendar could be and how careful one must be in specifying dates.  To say March of 1716 is unclear because there are two sets of days, a year apart, which meet this requirement.

I finally obtained the statement in the Essex County House so that I would have a clear idea of just which of the two possible months of March is the correct one.

In Will Book 16, page 180, the statement reads:

"The Honable Alex Spotswood His Majesty's Lieut. Governour & Commander in Chief of Virginia did put under my command Eleven Labouring men to work in the Mines or Quarries at or near Germanna, and we began to work March One Thousand Seven Hundred and 15/16 and so continued til Dec. One Thousand Seven Hundred & Eighteen.

John Justice Albright

What is subscribed above by the Hofman is true, for I kept the accounts for him & was one of the men.

Hs. Jacob Holtsclare"

At a Court held for Essex County on Tuesday the 17th Day of May 1720:

Then sworn to by the above names John Justice Albright and Hans Jacob Holsclare & ordered to be recorded.

Capt W. Beverly, Clerk"

With the dates clarified, we now know the Germans started mining about two years after they came and they worked for a little more than two and a half years at this.  (Probably the work was not full time, since they had to farm also.)

The mining "at" Germanna was probably the silver mine.  John Fontaine, in August and September of 1716, seems to imply that the Germans had been working at the silver mine.  Spotswood, in his letter to Col. Harrison, puts the start of the search for iron at about the time the Second Colony came, but I suspect that the search for iron ore started sooner than late 1717.  This is probably the mining that qualifies as "near".  (The eventual mine was thirteen miles from Germanna.)  Notice that I imply that the iron had to be found.  Spotswood did not discover any iron ore.  The idea that he had discovered iron is a piece of fiction.
(29 Oct 02)



Nr. 1512:

Where was the late Lt. Gov. Alexander Spotswood during the year of 1724?  According to records at the Board of Trade and Plantations, he was in Virginia on the date of 16 June 1724.  On that date he wrote to the Board to explain why he was detained in coming to England.  Apparently he wanted to go to England, and several people and commissions in England wanted to talk to him about his land transactions.

His first excuse for his tardiness was that he could not get passage on a warship.  He said he was afraid to go by a merchant ship because the pirates might learn of it and intercept the ship with the objective of capturing him.  He had waged a vigorous campaign against piracy and there was a certain amount of truth in what he said.  Still, it sounds more of a made-up excuse than a real reason.

Perhaps the real reason was that the year 1724 was the first year that he made sizeable shipments of iron to England.  In 1723 he had shipped token quantities, and in 1724 he shipped significantly more.  Knowing that he was to be absent for a considerable time in England, he probably wanted to establish that he could produce iron for export to England.  Perhaps he was hopeful that the pattern he established in 1724 could be repeated in the following years, even though he was not there.

Spotswood suggested that he would probably go a northern port to catch a ship for England.  We do not know the departure date (or the port), but we do know that on 1 Dec 1724 he appeared in person before the Board of Commissioners for Plantations and Trade, and asked to be notified if any complaints came before the Board concerning him.  Since a primary purpose of his trip to England was to secure the title to his lands in Virginia, and since the Board was the center of all actions on the subject, I would conclude that he had not been in England very long before this date (1 Dec 1724).

The east bound trip across the Atlantic took about eight weeks, to judge by the mails.  Therefore, it is probable that he left America in the month of September, which was three months after he had made his excuses in June.  Taken all together, Spotswood could not have been in England more than two months in the year 1724 (NS).  Two months at sea is an estimate.

The information that I have just given comes from the information at the Library of Virginia in their Colonial Records Project.  For the 350th anniversary of the founding of the Colony of Virginia, people from Virginia went to England and microfilmed all records they could find that mentioned Virginia.  One can search abstracts of the information in the project on-line, and obtain copies from the microfilm in Richmond, or copies of the original documents in England (various depositories).
(30 Oct 02)



Nr. 1513:

The year of 1724 (NS) was important for Alexander Spotswood.  This year he was able to show that he could make a significant shipment of iron to England.  I suspect that the reason he stalled in going to England was that he wanted to establish that he could produce iron.

The Customs House in London prepared a report on the amount of iron imported into Great Britain from the colonies from 1710 to 1749 for each year.  In this case, as was usual, Christmas was used as the point between the years.  I suppose the theory was that no business was transacted on this day.  Pig iron and bar iron were distinguished.  The first year of any shipment to England was 1717, when 1 ton was shipped from Nevis (an island in the British Caribbean), and 2 tons were shipped from St. Christopher (another island in the British Caribbean; also known as St. Kitts).  Both of these were bar iron.

In 1718, 1 ton was shipped from Barbados (still another island in the British Caribbean), 1 ton from Nevis, and 4 tons from the combination of Virginia and Maryland.  Again, all of this was bar iron, not cast (pig) iron.  I am told that it takes a furnace to produce pig iron (cast iron).  The furnace is required to get the iron hot enough to flow into a mold.  Bar iron does not require molten iron.  With a lot of labor, bar iron can be produced from a forge (again, I am told).

The first cast iron, which requires a furnace, from Virginia and Maryland to England was a shipment of 15 tons in 1723.  Spotswood's furnace was just beginning to produce iron reliably.  The output picked up in 1724, with 202 tons.  I suspect that Spotswood wanted to see this happen before he left for England.

While he was in England, Spotswood put a relative in charge of the overall operation in Virginia.  He told Byrd later that this has been a mistake, as the relative's thoughts were in the stars, not in the practical problems of running a furnace and the support operation.  Spotswood made it sound as if the operation went to pieces.  Actually, the schedule of iron shipments shows a somewhat different story.

The pig iron shipped from Virginia and Maryland, by successive years, starting with 1724, was:

1724 -   202 tons
1725 -   137 tons
1726 -   263 tons
1727 -   407 tons
1728 -   643 tons
1729 -   853 tons
1730 - 1527 tons
Now it is true that some other furnaces may have come on line during this time, but it looks to me as if the Tubal Cain furnace operation did not fail that badly.

Virginia was the biggest exporter of iron to England, much bigger than Pennsylvania, which was in second place.
(31 Oct 02)



Nr. 1514:

Pig iron is the resultant product when molten iron from a furnace is funneled into small molds and allowed to cool.  When the furnace is tapped, the molten iron flows out into a channel which has side branches.  One of these side branches could be the size of an ear of corn, perhaps larger.  The central channel with the branches reminded early workers of a nursing sow and piglets.  They called the resultant product pig iron.

As Gene has pointed out, it takes a lot of energy to smelt iron.  The heat, in Spotswood's time, was derived from charcoal made from wood.  In the Siegen area, at the time our ancestors left, the item in short supply was wood, for it takes about fifty pounds of wood to make the charcoal necessary to smelt out one pound of iron.  The charcoal is close to being pure carbon, and it burns with oxygen from the air, releasing heat and making carbon dioxide.  The fifty pounds of wood would have lost a lot of weight in being converted into charcoal.  It takes two oxygen atoms for every carbon atom to produce carbon dioxide.  Air is not pure oxygen; it is about twenty percent oxygen, and the other elements are inert.  Another way to look at the wood needed is to note that a furnace like Tubal, producing a few tons of iron per day, consumed the trees from one acre of ground.

All of that wood, now converted into charcoal, was fed through the furnace.  Several times this much air, by weight, had to be forced through the furnace also.  It did not flow naturally.  Large bellows were used, and these were driven by waterpower.  This was a second source of energy, and sometimes the process ground to a halt because the water flow was not sufficient.  The furnace had to be sited at a location where there was lots of water falling through a significant drop.  This was used to drive a waterwheel which drove the bellows.

The molten iron was sometimes allowed to flow into a mold to make useful products such as pots and pans.  Sometimes it might flow over a wide, level mold to make something like a fireplace backing or the parts of a five-plate stove.  This is casting directly from the furnace.  Instead of calling this pig iron, it was called cast iron, though the properties of cast iron and pig iron are essentially the same.  By either name, one property that they share is that the product is brittle.  It could not make an axe, or a sledge, or a wedge, which are subject to tremendous forces.  Nor is the cast iron malleable or useable directly by a blacksmith.

Bar iron and wrought iron are essentially the same thing.  This takes another stage of processing beyond cast iron to produce.  The furnace operation at Saugus, Massachusetts, which preceded the Tubal furnace, did not produce molten iron.  The temperatures were lower and the resultant iron was never truly melted but was a sponge like mass after the impurities had been burned out.  By beating and working this, iron could be produced that was malleable.
[to be continued]
(01 Nov 02)



Nr. 1515:

Recent discussions raise good points about iron making.  The use of copper vessels would not work for smelting iron.  Copper melts at about 2000 degrees Fahrenheit, and iron does not melt until it reaches a temperature closer to 3000 degrees.  The use of natural draft to move the air through the charge (iron ore, limestone, and charcoal) went out about 500 B.C.  The old furnaces found in the Siegen from this date used natural draft, but it was always a problem.  Even the Egyptians had learned to use goat skin bellows to force the air.  Blast furnaces in the modern form began to appear about 1340 A.D. in Central Europe.

Yes, the smelting furnace had to run continuously, day and night, seven days a week, for months on end.  Only a major problem could force them to shut down.  Such a problem might be a lack of water to drive the bellows, or a shortage of charcoal to fire the furnace.  If a furnace went cold, it was a problem to get it back into "blast".

Coke was not in wide use when the Tubal furnace started about 1721.  [Coke is made by pre-heating coal, which removes the impurities, mainly sulphur, which would contaminate the iron.]  [Limestone is also added because it helps to remove impurities from the iron ore during smelting.]  Therefore, wood was used to make charcoal, and it took a lot of wood.  The first use of coke was in England in 1709.  [The use of coke was pioneered by Abraham Darby.]  A large work crew about the furnace were the colliers who made charcoal from wood.  In a self-contained furnace operation, the supply of food took even more labor.  At one furnace in New Jersey, they used to shut down in the harvest season so everyone could work in the harvest.
[For more information on iron making, see Iron Smelting, A Beginners Guide.]

At this time (early 1700s), England had been so denuded of trees that they could not produce as much iron as they needed.  They had to buy iron from the Baltic nations.  Gov. Spotswood recognized this problem and gave that as a reason for producing iron in Virginia.  But the short-sighted English merchants were afraid that, if Virginia produced iron, they would start making iron objects in Virginia and not buy them from England.

Spotswood argued that Virginia had everything that was needed, and it would reduce the dependence on the foreign iron.  He, of course, was correct.  Perhaps this is the reason that, when he did start making iron, the objections were minimal.  The merchants in England, though, said that Virginia should ship the pig iron to England and not make any final products in Virginia.

I erred slightly in the last note.  The oxygen in the air is not entirely consumed by the charcoal.  Generally, the charcoal and oxygen make carbon monoxide, and this combines with oxygen in the iron ore, producing carbon dioxide and iron.  This last chemical combination is aided by the limestone which acts as a catalyst in reducing the iron ore.

I spoke of the pouring the molten iron onto the ground where it was cast into pigs or useful products.  Probably I should have said the sand beds (sand molds) not the ground.  The sand was filtered and rotated in service to clean it up.
(02 Nov 02)



Nr. 1516:

In Note 1405 for 11 June 2002, I mentioned an incident in our visit to Austria last May.  We had stopped by Kollerschlag because the manager of the cafeteria in the buildings where my wife Eleanor my wife works was from there.  (Eleanor and he try short German phrases or sentences on each other with most of the trial being on Eleanor.  Clemens Mayer knows his German and English very well, so it was no problem for him, except perhaps to understand Eleanor.)

When we were in Kollerschlag, we met Clemen's brother, Georg, and his parents, and spent perhaps two hours talking to them.  Georg's mother, at our departure, gave us a few cookies to give to Clemens.  Was he surprised!

Georg, in October of this year, spent about two weeks in Munich at the Oktoberfest, working as a waiter.  By working 16 hour days, he earned good money, enough that he felt like investigating air fares to America.  In the end, he decided to pay his brother Clemens, in Philadelphia, a visit.  Yesterday, we had Clemens, his wife Rosemary, their two young sons, his brother Georg, and Georg's friend, Michael, for lunch.  They were wonderful guests.

In the afternoon, Eleanor, Rosemary, and the two sons went to Longwood Gardens.  Clemens plays soccer in an informal league, and all the men went to that.  The opposition team was shorthanded, so Georg and Michael played for them.  They didn't have the right shoes but they still played, even if they were constrained in their actions.

Already, Clemens has promised to treat us to one of his Austrian dinners.

Michael has an unusual distinction in that he was a member of the Vienna Boy's Choir for about five years.  He auditioned when he was about eight, was accepted, and sang with them till he about thirteen.  He and his family had some idea what was involved, as he had an older brother who did the same thing.  As a member, he lived with the other boys in Vienna, and he studied music and his academic work.  About every two weeks, he could go home to his parents.  Because the choir travels so much, Michael had seen the world before he was twelve.  During these travels, he did not get home as often.

The moral of the story is that there are fringe benefits in travel.
(04 Nov 02)



Nr. 1517:

What is evidence?  Sometimes we are surprised.  Andreas Mielke found letters written by the Lutheran pastor, Ziegenhagen, in London, which described the two persons from Spotsylvania who had arrived in London as deputies of the Lutheran congregation.  This was late in 1724.  Ziegenhagen gave no names.

The deputies were expecting to pick up a pastor to take back to America, but there was no one to return to Virginia with them.  In the end they had to return home empty handed, a bitter disappointment to them.

Some of the events that happened to them in London included a presentation to the Crown Princess, who gave them each two Guineas.  They brought a present to the King, a wild animal which they had cared for during the Atlantic crossing, from Lt. Gov. Drysdale in Virginia.  The king also gave each of them two Guineas.  They sorely needed the money, as they were described as penniless and very poorly dressed.  They testified there were no man-eating animals in Virginia, at least where they lived.  (That in itself is evidence what Europeans thought about America.)

Finding Ziegenhagen's letters which told us this was not simple, as they were in the State Library in Berlin.  Why this was the repository is unknown.  It was a disappointment that Ziegenhagen had not named the deputies.

Was there any evidence in Virginia as to who they were?  We have two suggestions:

  1. From the Spotsylvania Will Book A, for 4 March 1724 (NS), at the bottom of page 65, there was the entry:

      "Cyriacus fflishman and Michael Coock put up their names to signify their intention for goeing to England this March Court."

  2. Then, there was point 3. of the Petition of the Germans to the Burgesses for help in the lawsuits brought by Alexander Spotswood.  It read:

      "Wee design to go to England and from thence to germany, to bring in a Minister for us high germans who are here, do humbly ask if it is proper to desire the governour to give us an attestation & passport to witness that we are the inhabitants here, the Burgesses from Spotsylvania know that we are by the rest of the Countrymen sent in that behalf.  We who are to go out our names are Michial Coock, and Zerachus Flishman."

With these two statements, both written not too many months before the two deputies made the trip, it would seem they are a conclusive answer as to who the deputies were.  No one could hardly fault you if you wrote a history and put these names as the deputies who went to London.  If you did, you would be wrong.  Andreas Mielke has found another letter, written after the fact, with the names of the deputies in it.
(05 Nov 02)



Nr. 1518:

Andreas Mielke found another letter which tells who the deputies were who went to London in search of a pastor.  It, too, was found in the archives in Berlin.  I believe that Andreas was surprised to have this letter, because he, too, thought that the evidence showed that Fleshman and Cook were the deputies.

When I say that Andreas found these letters, I do not mean that he personally rummaged among the papers.  What he did was to get the Archivist in Berlin interested in the problem, and he, the Archivist, searched around for documents pertaining to Stoever, Ziegenhagen, Francke, etc.  Still, the important thing was they came into the hands of Andreas and he translated them.

This particular letter was written by Johann Caspar Stoever, Michael Hold, and Michael Smith, to the London pastors when the three men arrived in London on their fund-raising trip.  The letter recounted the history of the Second Colony from the time they were in London in 1717 on the way to America, up the time of the fund-raising trip.  As such it is one of the earliest documents that explains some of the history of the group.  And it was signed by two men who participated in the history throughout.

The letter tells of the trip in 1724 by the two deputies.  They were Cyriax Fleischman and Johann Muetz.  There is no problem in identifying Cyriacus Fleshman.  We had to think a bit about Muetz, but we settled on John Motz.  The original intention had been Michael Cook instead of Motz as we read in the last note.  Why the last minute substitution is not explained at all.

This trip sheds some light on when the Second Colony might have moved to the Robinson River Valley.  Apparently Fleshman and Motz were free to leave in 1724.

While John Motz was not sued by Spotswood, probably because his transportation had been paid by a partner of Spotswood, Fleshman was sued by Spotswood, and his lawsuit was still pending when he went to England.  But it would appear that he was free to go in 1724.  He may have sneaked out of town, but the first suggestion is that the Germans were free to go in 1724.  However, they may not have left in 1724, as they may have preferred to stay and harvest the 1724 crops, and then leave.  They might have moved in the fall of 1724, or in the winter of 1725 (New Style dates).

Notice that Spotswood, Fleshman, and Motz all went to London about the same time.  There is a strong implication that Fleshman and Motz had an audience with King George (I).  There is no evidence that Spotswood ever did.  But then, Fleshman and Motz spoke the King's language, and it was all German to Spotswood.
(06 Nov 02)



Nr. 1519:

I should add that the stories on the deputies to London appeared in a two-part article by Andreas Mielke in the September and November issues of Beyond Germanna.

Johannes Motz and Maria Apollonia Maubars were married at Bonfeld, on 28 February 1716 (NS), not far from many of the other Second Colony people.  They had a son, Johann Simon, born 28 October 1716, who died the following day.  This is about all that we know from Germany.  Johannes Motz is mentioned in the book, Eighteenth Century Emigrants from German Speaking Lands to North America, Vol. 1, by Annette Kunselman Burgert.

There is a proof of importation in 1717 for John Motz and his wife, Maria Pelonia, recorded in February of 1725, on the old style calendar.  By our calendar, this would be 1726.  With John Motz in London in the fall of 1724, we can say that he returned to Virginia.

He had a 400-acre land grant with John Harnsberger, which was issued 1726.  The application for this land was probably made before he went to London.  He may have felt uncertain about his return, and Harnsberger may have been acting as a trustee in case Motz did not return.  Also, he may have felt uncomfortable about being away at the time the patent might issue.  Harnsberger could have been his agent.  Then again, the connection might run deeper than these suggestions.

Motz was not sued by Spotswood, nor was he on Spotswood's importation list.  Spotswood had minority partners in the Spotsylvania Tract.  One of these partners, the only one clearly known, was Robert Beverley.  One German in the service of Beverly was George Moyer.  Spotswood bought out the interests of the Beverleys in the project.  When Spotswood sued Moyer, he obtained the testimony of Robert Beverley's son, who had inherited his father's interest and then sold it to Spotswood.  Motz was probably in the service of another partner of Spotswood, but Spotswood did not have the necessary testimony or the rights to sue Motz.

These partners had sizeable interests in the project.  Spotswood said there were seventy-odd Germans (they rounded the number to eighty).  Spotswood's importation list had only forty-eight names on it.  Say there were eighty Germans.  Then Spotswood's initial interest was about 48/80 or 60%.  His partners accounted for the other 40%.  Spotswood bought out all of his partners.

What happened to Motz after his return is unknown.  His appearance at the court in February of 1726 (NS) was the last known appearance for him.  His patent did issue later than this, but he did not have to be there for that to happen.
(07 Nov 02)



Nr. 1520:

Note to the Germanna Colonist List Members:

I made a grave mistake in Notes 1518 and 1519.  I am sending a correction to my statements in these two notes and in order that it follow them immediately, I am going to call this correction "Note 1520" even though I have sent one already using that number.  Please re-number Note 1520, that pertains to Johann Peter Gudelius as Note 1521.  I was entirely responsible for the error, and Andreas Mielke, the author of the original material, is totally absolved.  Those of you who read the articles in Beyond Germanna will recognize that I should have read the material more carefully.

The error is relatively simple.  The German Lutherans in Virginian were writing letters to London seeking a pastor in 1724.  In this same year, they made two statements that implied that they expected to go to London in that year (Fleshman and Cook were named as the deputies).  The two deputies did not go until late in the year 1726, and when they did go it was Fleshman and Motz.

The implications of the error are much larger.  There is no evidence that John Motz returned to Virginia.  In Note 1519, the last paragraph needs correction to eliminate the statement that positively states he did return.  He perhaps did return; perhaps he did not return.
(08 Nov 02)



Nr. 1521:

A few weeks ago, it was mentioned that Carol Ann Burdine, after publishing her findings on the Burdine family, had difficulties convincing some people of the validity of her research.  I have encountered the same difficulty with Lewis Fisher (Ludwig Fischer) who some people claim was a baron, etc., etc.  In this note, I thought I would start the history of another person, Johann Peter Gudelius, or Gutelius.  Many of you from the Siegen area may, in fact, be related to this person.  [Another member of the Gudelius family did leave the Nassau-Siegen area with the intention of joining the Germanna Colonists.  He was unfortunate in his choice of a ship, the Oliver, which was lost off the coast of Virginia, almost in the harbor.  He did not survive the trip.]

The Gudelius family originated with Wendel Gudel who enrolled at the University of Heidelberg on 19 Dec 1586.  In doing so, he took the name Wendelinus Gudelius, a Latinized form which was popular with academics at that time.  [The Crecelius family in the Germanna colonists did the same thing.]  Wendel Gudelius became a chaplain at Herborn, about nine miles to the southeast of Siegen.  His descendants lived in this general area.  By 1700, there were six Gudelius families, as a search of the census and parish records show, and they can all be traced to the progenitor of the family.

The family of Johann Peter Gudelius lived at Niederholzklau (a few miles west of Siegen).  They had no church in the village, but there was a church at Oberholzklau nearby.  There are some gaps in the parish records, but the limits on the birth of Johann Peter are 1708 to 1711.  His father was Christoph Gudelius, born at Dirlenbach about 1664, and his mother was Elisabeth Magdalene Baum, born at Eisern about 1674.  The birth of Johann Peter is confirmed by census and sponsorship records in other parishes.  He was old enough to be a sponsor of a child of Johann Wilhelm and Maria Wirths at Wuerdon on 30 Sep 1736 (in the parish records of Freusburg).

Johann Peter Gudelius was the father of an illegitimate son (Johann Henrich Gudelius), born at Wuerdon on 6 Sep 1743.  Again, Johann Peter Gudelius was the father of a second illegitimate son (Johann), born at Meiswinkel on 5 May 1745, by another mother.  Johann, the son, died two years later.  This is the last record for Johann Peter Gudelius in the Nassau-Siegen region.

He, Johann Peter Gudelius, sailed from Rotterdam on the ship Nancy, and arrived at Philadelphia on 31 August 1750.  Several other people on the ship can be identified as having a Nassau-Siegen origin, including Joh. Jacob Brumbach, Christian Giebeler, Johannes Jung, Tilman Creutz, and Dilmanus Weissgerber.

Next, I will look at some of the history of Johann Peter in America.
(08 Nov 02)



Nr. 1522:

The individual we are following, Johann Peter Gudelius, arrived at Philadelphia on 31 August 1750, and registered as Johann Peter Gutelius.  This is a perfectly natural spelling of the name.  As we know, the letters t and d are often interchanged.  When he signed his name, he used typical German letters, not Roman letters.  Then, eleven years later, Peter Gudelius, in Lancaster County, PA, took out his naturalization (29 March 1761).

He was a sponsor of Johann Peter Engel in Manheim parish on 14 March 1772.  He wrote his will, 5 August 1773, with his name as Gudelius.  The inscription on his gravestone is written in the German language.  The township of Manheim where he had lived is very German and oriented to the Reformed religion.

Now I want you to take a guess as to what nationality many of his descendants say he was.

This is a man who writes with German letters, travels with Germans, has a perfectly good German name, writes his will in German, lives among Germans, and has the inscription on his tombstone carved in the German language.

Very strangely, many of his descendants say that he was French.  They add to the story that he was a doctor in the French army who was banished because he married outside his station in life.  They have no facts to support his French origins or presence except someone, out of the thin air, said so.

Faced with the facts that I have recounted, one wonders how the descendants could hold to this story.  Probably a century or more ago, a lot of guessing took place and for some reason the toss of the coin showed "France".  But one very telling factor is that the published genealogy of the family was published in 1916.  If your memory goes back this far, you will remember that sentiment in 1916 was very much against anything German.  Schmidts became Smiths.  Berlins became Berwins.  People did everything they could to deny any connection to Germany.  Probably this influenced the author of the Gudelius genealogy.

My information comes from Jost Gudelius who, with his family, are good friends by now.  We visit them on our trips to Germany.  The family's web page is www.gudelius.de, for more information in both English and German.

I will be away from my post here for a few days.  The first reason is that Eleanor and I will be attending the annual Rayborn L. Zerby lecture at Bates College in Maine.  Prof. Zerby was Eleanor's father, who taught at Bates for more than thirty years.  He was well remembered by years of students who established an endowment fund for the purpose of having a speaker each year in his honor.  The speaker this year is Marcus Borg, and for information on him consult the web here, here, here, or here.  Immediately after this I am going down to Virginia for research purposes.  Sometimes one cannot beat a look at the original records, especially when the microfilm is lousy.
(09 Nov 02)



Nr. 1523:

This week I was away from home four days so I had little opportunity to write Notes.  In the last two days, Andreas Mielke and I were checking names in the German Lutheran Church records in Madison, Virginia.

Just a word about the name of the church, it had no formal name for the first century of its existence.  The members of the congregation were content to call it the Evangelical Lutheran Church, the German Lutheran Church, or the Madison Lutheran Church.  They favored the words which described it as German and as Lutheran.  The word "Evangelical" merely described it as Protestant, without any other implication.  The two main line churches in Germany today are Katholic and Evangelisch (both as spelled in the German language).  The latter is a combination of the Lutheran and the Reformed Churches.  Sometimes an Evangelisch church will note whether its heritage is Lutheran or Reformed.  Other Evangelisch churches besides the Reformed and the Lutheran are called "Frei" Evangelisch or "Free".  They are independents.

The first record that we have found in which the Lutheran Church at Madison, Virginia, is named as Hebron was about 1850.

Andreas Mielke and I have been working on the communion lists for this German Lutheran Church.  We have a microfilm of the records, though the quality is not the best.  We have the work of several others who have went over the records and have contributed readings.  There were points of disagreement between all of us.  So we decided to look at the original records.  This takes advance preparation and an appointment must be set up.  I do not advise the casual observer to do this.  They would be better off to take the prepared lists.  In the end we resolved the names, excepting one or two on which it was impossible to reach an agreement or even any suggestion as to what was intended.

It is our hope shortly to have a revised and an augmented (compared to previous) list of names for publication.

On the way back to Pennsylvania, we decided to go by way of the Shenandoah Valley.  Our interest in it is due to the ministers who crossed the Blue Ridge Mountains to serve congregations on the other side.  Some of these were the German Lutheran ministers in Orange, Culpeper, and Madison counties, who went West.  Also, there were ministers going in the other direction to serve the congregations in Culpeper and Madison counties.  This part of our trip took us to New Market, Edinburg, and Winchester.  As we traveled, we remembered that Klaus Wust lives at Edinburg.  Everyone that we talked to urged us to visit him.  So we gave him a call and he invited us out to his farm.
(16 Nov 02)



Nr. 1524:

Klaus Wust reached adulthood in Germany during World War II.  He was able to avoid service in the army but he did serve in the German navy, starting in 1944.  He was assigned to a transport ship, a former English ship, that was used in the Baltic sea to transport civilians from the eastern regions to western Germany.  He says that the English understood the nature of the work that the transport was doing and they arranged a code scheme that allowed the transport to do this work without interference.

At the end of the war, the transport was returned to northern ports in Great Britain.  Though this activity, Klaus became associated with the work of the English in administering occupied regions of Germany.  He had learned some English when growing up and he learned more while he was working with the British.  He was involved in relief work of several American organizations.  He had obtained a job as an editor/writer for a newspaper in Germany when he was approached by the American relief organizations to go to America for six weeks to speak to groups here.  One of the groups was the Church of the Brethren which had a college* at Harrisonburg.  He arrived in 1949, and the second day he was here he delivered his first speech in English.

The President of the university proposed to Klaus that he enroll as a student.  His newspaper in Germany agreed to this if he would become a correspondent.  His assigned beat was Washington, D.C.  He bought an old car and made a weekly trip over to Washington to find news to report.  The one year of school was extended to two years.  Klaus needed money and the State Department was looking for people who could help administer the Marshall plan in Germany.  He passed the language test and was taken on as a translator.

From the very beginning of his arrival in America, Klaus was impressed by the signs of German civilization that he saw.  He asked a German professor at the college to whom he might talk to learn more.  This professor said that Klaus must talk to John Wayland.  Klaus contacted John and asked where the first German settlement was in the Shenandoah Valley.  John said that he if wanted to start with the first German settlement, he should start with the first one in Virginia which was Germanna.  The next weekend, John took Klaus over to the Germanna site.  At that time, there was almost nothing being done in the field of Germanna research and recognition.

From this modest beginning, grew the work which was expressed in the book, "The Virginia Germans".  Since that time, Klaus has concentrated upon a second book pertaining to the process of emigration from all of the German-speaking lands.  He says that the book is written and needs only to have references and bibliography added.  This is his current activity.  Unfortunately, his health is not the best and progress is slow.

He seemed to enjoy the break, and the conversation with Andreas and me.  Certainly we enjoyed talking to him.
*(See next Note, Nr. 1525.)
(18 Nov 02)



Nr. 1525:

*(A correction to the last note:  "John, Bridgewater College is located at Bridgewater, VA, about seven miles from Harrisonburg." Joe Baker.)

Most of us have heard of the “State of Franklin”.  Perhaps many of you have heard of the “Free State” which was surrounded by Virginia.  I will review this using "Marshall:  The Free State Revisited", by Samuel Shayon, in "The Fauquier Heritage and Preservation News for Summer and Fall of 2002". Mr. Shayon draws, in turn, on the May 1982 edition of "Shenandoah Valley Magazine".

The adjective "free" had nothing to do with slavery or bondage.  The Free State was a part of Fauquier County to the extent that the citizens of the Free State admitted any loyalty to a government body.  Their position and views originated in the Northern Neck proprietorship created by Charles II to reward some faithful supporters.  The word "Neck" came about in 1609 when John Smith divided Virginia into the regions between the major rivers.  Each of these was a "neck" and the Northern Neck was the land between the Potomac River and the Rappahannock River.  Today, this land makes up 21 of the Counties in Virginia.  Charles II gave this land to six men, but it became the sole property of Lord Culpeper, who left it to his daughter, who left it, in 1719, to her son Thomas, sixth Baron and Lord Fairfax.

To obtain a return from his land, Lord Fairfax leased it to individuals who agreed to settle on the land and to develop it.  A common unit of acreage was 200 acres, and a rent of 2 pounds, 10 shillings, was to be paid per year.  The tenants paid the local taxes also.  A lease might run for as long as three lives.

John Marshall, later the fourth Chief Justice of the United States, was born in 1755 at Germantown, now Midlands.  His father worked for Lord Fairfax.  After the Revolution, questions arose about the ownership of the land.  John Marshall, by now a lawyer, represented the heirs of Fairfax in a dispute with the Commonwealth of Virginia.  The land in question could be divided into three categories, land that had never been granted, land that was leased to third parties (settlers) by the Northern Neck proprietorship, and land that belonged to Fairfax personally (as opposed to the lands of the proprietorship).

Lands in the first category were turned over to Virginia.  The other lands were to remain with the Fairfax heirs.  One parcel, the Leeds Manor, had been granted by the Northern Neck proprietorship to Lord Fairfax personally.  This amounted to about 160,000 acres.  Fairfax had leased farms to settlers, but the lease used his name, not in the name of the proprietorship.

In 1806, John Marshall and two relatives bought the Leeds Manor from General Philip Martin, who was the heir of Lord Fairfax. This was the personal land of Lord Fairfax, much of which was under lease to individuals.  Marshall, et al, paid something like 14,000 to 20,000 pounds for the property.
(To be continued in
Note Nr. 1526, Page Nr. 62.)
(19 Nov 02)


(To see John & Eleanor Blankenbaker's May, 2000, and May, 2002, Germany and Austria photos, click here.)

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


(This page contains the SIXTY-FIRST set of Notes, Nr. 1501 through Nr. 1525.)


John and George would like very much to hear from readers of these Germanna History pages.  We welcome your criticisms, compliments, corrections, or other comments.  When you click on "click here" below, both of us will receive your message.  We would like to hear what you have to say about the content of the Notes, and about spelling, punctuation, format, etc.  Just click here to send us your message.  Thank You!

There is a Mailing List (also known as a Discussion List or Discussion Group), called GERMANNA_COLONIES, at RootsWeb.  This List is open to all subscribers for the broadcast of their messages.  John urges more of you to make it a research tool for answering your questions, or for summarizing your findings, on any subject concerning the Germanna Colonies of Virginia.  On this List, you may make inquiries of specific Germanna SURNAMES.  At present, there are about 800 subscribers and there are bound to be users here who can help you.

If you are interested in subscribing to this List, click here.  You don't need to type anything, just click on "Send".  You will shortly receive a Welcome Message explaining the List.

(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 1501 through 1525.

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