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East Tennessee Germanna Descendants Reunion

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Tennessee Germanna Descendants Reunion
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To Be Held on 9, 10, and 11 September 2011

(The link to the page containing a list of Tennessee Germanna Families, maps of the area, driving directions, hotels/motels, etc., is found at the bottom of this page, or can be accessed directly by clicking here.)

(There are no registration, or other, fees required; however, if you attend Sunday's affairs, you should arrange to bring a dish of some kind, or something from KFC, etc.)

This page contains information on the Tennessee Germanna Families Reunion, which will be held at the Philadelphia Cumberland Presbyterian Church, in Washington Co., TN, on the 9th, 10, and 11th of September, 2011.  This Reunion is held in conjunction with the annual BROYLES Descendants Reunion.


The Philadelphia Cumberland Presbyterian Church has been holding an annual BROYLES Reunion and Family Dinner on the second weekend in September for many years.  Saturday was usually devoted to a hamburger and hot dog cookout, sponsored and put on by the youth of the Church, some old-fashioned country singing, and just a nice get-together of all the "cousins" in the area.  Sunday was for attending Church services, and participation in a "pot-luck" dinner on the grounds, with various religious singers performing for everyone.

Gradually, over the years, cousins from other areas and states started visiting also.  Then, some of those who attended started talking about all the other "cousins", those who descended from various BROYLES brothers and sisters, and on back through the generations.  It soon became apparent that just about everyone in lower Washington County and upper Greene County was related, not only through the BROYLES clan, but through most of the other Germanna families that had settled in the area at the same time the Broyles did.

Then, after several Tennessee Germanna descendants really became genealogy addicts, and started communicating with cousins from all over the country, it was found that many, many Tennessee Germanna descendants were extremely interested in the area from which their ancestors had come.  This included not only BROYLES descendants, but descendants from virtually all other Tennessee Germanna families, and Germanna-related families.  It is a rare descendant from SW Washington Co. or E Greene Co. who does not have an ancestor from one of the families in East Tennessee Germanna Families table, in his/her family tree.  In fact, most have several of these families in their ancestry.

All Tennessee Germanna descendants are invited to next year's Reunion and we hope to have many "cousins" attend.  In addition to cousins from the immediate area, we want to see repeat visitors from past Reunions, as well new cousins who have not attended before, from all over the country.

The following Germanna families were represented at past Reunions.  (Keep in mind that most of the cousins attending had several families in their ancestry.)

Bitner Blankenbaker Bowman Briles Brown
Broyles Burgner Click Clore Cook
Copp Crecelius Crim Crum Fellers
Fillers Fleshman G'Fellers Hoffman Holt
Huffman Klug Kupp Martin Mauk
Miller Painter Patton Rush Patton
Snapp Waddell Walters Wayland Wilhite
Wilhoit Yeager Yowell
(If I omitted any families above, it was inadvertent.)

FRIDAY: Friday's events will start at 12:00 Noon.  We hope to meet, get acquainted, and travel around the area to see some historical sites related to early Germanna settlers.  It will be a good time to compare ancestors, databases, etc., so bring your material with you.

Jim Albin, a descendant of several Germanna families, will present a slide show of the areas in what is now Germany, from which our ancestors emigrated.

Let's plan to have supper at the old country store mentioned below, say around 6:00 PM. On Friday's the special is BBQ ribs.


On Saturday, we will have several speakers who will cover general Germanna topics, as well as topics related to the East Tennessee area.

We plan to gather on Saturday at 9:00 A.M.  Our probable agenda is hear the speakers' presentations until about Noon.  Just across the road from the church is an old country store which, within the past year, has been bought and turned into a restaurant.  This building has been a country store for almost a hundred years, and at one time contained the Pilot Hill U.S. Post Office.  (Pilot Hill is the tall hill to the north which is the tallest point in the area until one reaches the mountains.)  The present owners have restored the store part to a semblence of its orignal appearance and have established a small restaurant within.  Word has spread widely around the area about the fantastic BBQ served there.  We could also drive a few short miles to the Farmer's Daughter Restaurant where we have dined several times at past Reunions.  I would suggest that we adjourn to the Farmer's Daughter Restaurant around 6:00 PM on Saturday and enjoy a great family-style dinner before returning to our lodgings.

The first speaker on Saturday will be Virginia "Gennie" Nuta.  She will be speaking on the subject of why the Germanna settlers left Virginia and ended up in Tennessee.

After Gennie's presentation, we will break for lunch. At about 1:00 P.M., there will be a "skit" wherein one of our Germanna ancestors will speak to you.  He will talk about why they left Germany, talk about the trials and tribulations on the journey, what they brought with them, how they ended up in Virginia, and what they learned after arriving in America.  (This one is "loaded".)

After the "skit", there will be a presentation outlining the migration from VA to TN.  This presentation will include Lieutenant Governor Spotswoods's contribution to "American Civilization", and how he was instrumental in opening up the interior of America, how his visions made America what it is today.

These presentations are not limited to BROYLES or WILHOIT/WILHITE families - they encompass ALL the German families that came from the Robinson River Valley and Shenandoah Vally of Virginia.  They also include those families that weren't German, but married into the German families in East Tennessee.  "If you scratch a descendant of a Washington or Green County family, from the 1700's or early 1800's, you scratch a "German".

At 2:30 PM, Saturday, we will travel to Broylesville and visit the original home of Adam Alexander BROYLES, Jr., the son of the Adam who estabilished Broylesville, and built the Mercantile Building and Broylesville Inn.  The home is now owned by Callie RUBLE, another German family that married into many of the Germanna families in Greene and Washington Counties, TN.

For those who wish to travel to nearby cemeteries (or other family sites) to look for their ancestors, we will try to arrange tours to those areas on Friday and possibly Saturday afternoon after all presentations are concluded.  In order to plan properly, we MUST know who will attend and which ancestors they are interested in.  If we know beforehand who your ancestors were, we can locate the cemeteries in which they are located and plan accordingly.

(For some of you who are visiting and are descended not only from BROYLES, but WILHOIT/WILHITE, and other Germanna families, your ancestors were buried in the original cemetery at Broylesville, so our visit there will serve dual purposes for you.)



At about 10:00 AM on Sunday (exact time will be announced on Saturday) everyone is invited to join the local congregation at the church.  We will enjoy choir singing, devotional services, and gospel singing.  For this special Sunday the church usually has local gospel singing groups perform and it is something you don't want to miss.

About 12:00 Noon we will all adjourn to the picnic area for a table-breaking-dinner.  All our cousins will bring their favorite dishes and we will have a feast.  In addition to all the kinfolk we have met on Saturday, we will get to meet several hundred more local cousins.

(NOTE:  For those of you who come from "out of the area", DON'T worry about bringing a dish.  I assure you there will be more than enough to go around.  Should any of you absolutely insist, you can always stop by Kentucky Fried Chicken, or another fast-food restaurant, or the deli at a local supermarket, and pick up something.)

If you plan to attend the 2011 Reunion, PLEASE RSVP early (it's not too early now), AND start making your plans NOW!!!!!  Since we need to know how many cousins to reserve tables for at the restaurant on Saturday, we ask you to reply as soon as possible if you plan to attend.  I'll be keeping a list of all out-of-the-area visitors, and would appreciate the following information:

Germanna Connections
Number in Party
Any other information you would like to send

(To send me your RSVP, click here.)

(If you can possibly make it, we WANT to see you at the Reunion.  Start planning NOW !!!!!    SgtGeorge, George W. Durman)

(You can email me at either of the following addresses:

(Maps, driving directions, and area lodging are found here.)

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