GERMANNA History Notes Page #086

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This is the EIGHTY-SIXTH 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 2126 through 2150.

GERMANNA History Notes
Page 86

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Nr. 2126:

[With William Byrd at Mrs. Syme's.]

"8 [October 1732].  I moistened my clay with a quart of milk and tea, which I found altogether as great a help to discourse as the juice of the grape.  The courteous widow invited me to rest myself there that good day and go to the church with her, but I excused myself by telling her she would certainly spoil my devotion.  Then she civilly entreated me to make her house my home whenever I visited my plantations, which made me bow low and thank her very kindly.

"From thence I crossed over to Shacco's and took Thomas Tinsley for my guide, finding the distance about fifteen miles.  I found everybody well at the Falls [on the James River], blessed be God, though the bloody flux raged pretty much in the neighborhood.  Mr. Booker had received a letter the day before from Mrs. Byrd, giving an account of great desolation made in our neighborhood by the death of Mr. Lightfoot, Mrs. Soan, Captain Gerald, and Colonel Henry Harrison.  Finding the flux had been so fatal, I desired Mr. Booker to make use of one of the following remedy, in case it should come amongst my people:  To let them blood immediately about eight ounces, the next day to give them a dose of Indian physic, and to repeat the vomit again the day following, unless the symptoms abated.  In the meantime, they should eat nothing but a quarter of a pint of milk boiled with a quart of water and medicated with a little mullein root or that of the prickly pear, to restore the mucus of the bowels and heal the excoriation.  At the same time, I ordered him to communicate this method to all the poor neighbors, and especially to my overseers, with strict orders to use it on the first appearance of that distemper, because in that and all other sharp diseases delays are very dangerous.

"I also instructed Mr. Booker in the way I had learnt of blowing up the rocks, which were now drilled pretty full of holes, and he promised to put it in execution.  After discoursing seriously with the father about my affairs, I joked with the daughter in the evening and about eight retired to my castle and recollected all the follies of the day, the little I had learnt and the still less good I had done.

"9 [October].  My long absence made me long for the domestic delights of my own family, for the smiles of an affectionate wife and the prattle of my innocent children.  As soon as I sallied out of my castle, I understood that Colonel Carter's Sam was come, by his master's leave, to show my people to blow up the rocks in the canal.  He pretended to great skill in that matter but performed very little, which, however, might be effect of the idleness rather than ignorance.  He came upon one of my horses, which he tied to a tree at Shacco's, where the poor animal kept a fast of a night and a day.  Though this fellow worked very little at the rocks, yet my man Argalus stole his trade and performed as well as he."

(13 Jun 05)

Nr. 2127:

[With Col. Byrd on his own plantations, on 9 September 1732.]

"For this good turn, I ordered Mr. Samuel half a pistole [a Spanish coin], all which he laid out with a New England man and made my weaver and spinning woman, who has the happiness to be called his wife, exceedingly drunk.  To punish the varlet for all these pranks, I ordered him [?] to be banished from thence forthwith, under the penalty of being whipped home from constable to constable if he presumed to come again.

"I left my memorandums with Mr. Booker of everything I ordered to be done and mounted my horse about ten, and in little more reached Bermuda Hundred and crossed over to Colonel Carter's [John Carter, son of King Carter].  He, like an industrious person, was gone to oversee his overseers at North Wales, but his lady was at home and kept me till suppertime before we went to dinner.  As soon as I had done justice to my stomach, I made my honors to the good-humored little fairy and made the best of my way home, where I had the great satisfaction to find all that was dearest to me in good health, nor had any disaster happened in the family since I went away.  Some of my neighbors had worm fevers, with all the symptoms of the bloody flux, but blessed be God, their distempers gave way to proper remedies."

This is the end of William Byrd's "Progress to the Mines".  The portion that has been published by the Germanna Foundation was not reproduced here.  William Byrd wrote for himself and this was never published while he was living.  He is associated with the Germanna Colonies in at least this way.  He obtained from the Council a patent of 100,000 acres contingent on settling 100 families on it within three years time.  He had some difficulty in securing people to live on it.  Working with a Mr. Ochs of Swiss origins, they attempted to find the people in Switzerland.  In 1738, they had a large group of families ready to go to Virginia.  They chartered the ship "Oliver" at Rotterdam.  At this same time, about 50 people arrived from Freudenberg in Nassau-Siegen who wanted to go to Virginia.  They agreed to add these people to the passenger list though it appears there was no commitment by these Germans to settle on Byrd's land.  [Byrd's strategy may have been influenced by Alexander Spotswood, who subscribed to take a large number of Germans who arrived on one ship.]  The ship "Oliver" was overloaded and progress was slow.  Off the coast of Virginia, the ship sank with a great loss of life after a voyage of almost six months.  Only about one-third of the people survived that had embarked in Rotterdam.  Among the surviving people were Wayman, Millers, and Creutz among others (*see earlier Notes).

[*You can search John's earlier Notes posted to this website at our Search Page.  Just type in the surname you are looking for in the blank box and make sure that "John's Germanna Notes" appears in the first "Search" box.  Be sure you read the instructions for getting good search results.  As an example, you can type in "Creutz" and "Pico Search" will return 8 "hits" on John's Notes pages.  Searching at "Site Level" returns 10 "hits", for some reason.]
(14 Jun 05)

Nr. 2128:

One reason for giving the parts of William Byrd's "Progress to the Mines" that had not been given in the Germanna Record was to show at more length the writings of Byrd.  They are entertaining and tell us a lot about early Eighteenth Century Virginia.  He was roaming over the Tidewater region and we see the poor state of roads and lack of guidance given to travelers.  At the same time, we see the courteous reception that he obtained when he stopped overnight.

Another reason to recount the writings was to show the nervousness and expense involving in iron smelting.  Taking the expense question, Mr. Chiswell tells us that the partners in his iron operation had had to put in twelve thousand pounds Sterling to bring it to the point where there was some return on the investment.  A century earlier, the iron furnace at Falling Creek was sponsored by a group who put up five thousand pounds Sterling.  At this earlier venture, they did not make use of slave labor, so they were saved that expense.

In 1732, Alexander Spotswood had a partner in England, Robert Cary, who helped with the financing of the air furnace at Massaponox.  At the same time, Cary also had the responsibility to make friends in England so that nothing would upset or terminate the operation.  There was a distinct air of nervousness as to whether Parliament might forbid some or all iron works in Virginia.

In the Tubal furnace, the first iron furnace of Spotswood, there were English partners.  Some Bristol merchants supplied the slaves in 1723 that were needed.  Of course, with this large investment, they too would have been seeking friends to insure that the operation would continue until they recovered their expenses and profits.

Mr. Chiswell told Col. Byrd some points which duplicate the experience of Spotswood.  Chiswell said it was necessary to explore the iron mine extensively to see that it would yield enough iron to justify the great expense.  For this Chiswell recommended a year's work.  Spotswood once wrote that he set his Germans to looking for iron ore about the start of 1718 (NS).  Albrecht's and Holtzclaw's testimony in the Spotsylvania Court House was that mining and quarrying continued until December of 1718.  Chiswell also suggested that the ore be tested, which could be done in a forge much like a blacksmith's forge.  The Germans would have had no difficulty in doing this.

Spotswood in his early Virginia years did not have the necessary money to start an iron furnace and he had been warned by the Board of Trade that if such a project were started that it might be overthrown in England.  Within a few years, Spotswood did invest in an enterprise (Indian trading) which was overturned with a large loss to the Virginia investors.  Hence, Spotswood was nervous about starting an iron venture.  It was only when he was requested by Sir Richard to do so, that he commenced the search for iron ore.  Then it was several more years before the furnace was operating.
(15 Jun 05)

Nr. 2129:

Suzanne Matson brought to our attention a number of on-line documents relating to the history of the Germanna Colonies.  One of these was the set of remarks by Vincent Todd in 1913.  I now quote from him two excerpts from Spotswood�s letters:

To the L'ds Comm'rs of Trade.  July 21st, 1714

My Lords:

Since my last of the 9th of March, (whereof the enclosed is a Duplicate) I have had the hon'r to receive y'r Lo'ps of the 6th of April, with the Treatys of Peace and Comerce, which I have accordingly made public.  It is with great satisfaction that I can acquaint y'r Lo'ps that this Country enjoys a perfect Peace and that even the Indians, since the last Treaty made with them, have not offered the least disturbance, notwithstanding the Tuscaros, induced thereto, (as they say) by the people of Carolina, have departed from their agreements with this Governm't, and gon(e) to settle once more upon that Province, I continue, all resolv'd, to settle out our Tributary Indians as a guard to ye Frontiers, and in order to supply that part, w'ch was to have been covered by the Tuscaros, I have placed here a number of Protestant Germans, built them a fort and furnished it with two pieces of cannon and some ammunition, which will awe the Stragling partys of Northern Indians, and be a good Barrier for all that part of the Country.  These Germans were invited over, some years ago, by the Baron de Graffenreed, who has her Majesty's Letter to ye Governor of Virginia to furnish them with Land upon their arrival.  They are generally such as have been employed in their own country as Miners, and say they are satisfied there are divers kinds of minerals in those upper parts of the Country where they are settled, and even a good appearance of Silver Oar, . . .
Virginia, Feb'ry 7, 1715.  (1716 NS)


To the L'ds Comm'rs of Trade and Plantation:

. . . As to the other Settlement, named Germanna, there are about forty Germans, Men, Women, and Children, who, having quitted their native Country upon the invitation of the Herr Graffenriedt, and being grievously dissapointed by his failure to perform his Engagements to them, and they arriving also here just at a time when the Tuscaruro Indians departed from the Treaty they had made with this Government to settle upon its Northern Frontiers, I did both in Compassion to those poor Strangers and in regard to the safety of the Country, place them together upon a piece of Land, several Miles without the Inhabitants, where I built them Habitations, and subsisted them until they were able, by their own Labour, to provide for themselves, and I presume I may, without a Crime or Misdemeanor, endeavor to put them in an honest way of paying their Just Debts. . .

Todd now summarizes these statements with the claim that:
"This refers to his employment of them in building and operating his iron furnace."
Now reread Spotswood�s statements and see if Todd�s claim in the last paragraph is justified.  Todd is following Willis Kemper who has led generations of historians astray.  These are the struggles we face in rooting out the errors of history.  I have found several points where I think that Todd has made questionable and unjustifiable statements but I still recommend reading him.
(16 Jun 05)

Nr. 2130:

I thought we might review some of the events coming up soon so you can double check whether they are on your calendar or in your neighborhood.  In the order of their occurrence:

In Haubstadt, Indiana, on Saturday, June 25, there will be a meeting of Germanna descendants with an emphasis on the Willheits, but other families are welcome.  Last year, there were Broyles and Spillman descendants and perhaps others.  I am the speaker for the program.  (Since I will be traveling starting early in the week, there will be gaps in the notes next week.)  I am not sure about the location but I think the reunion is in a pavilion in a park on the north side of Haubstadt.

The Saturday following this, July 2, I expect to be a tour leader at the Hans Herr House.  This is not particularly Germanna related but it is of interest to everyone.  Then on July 15 to July 17 (Friday to Sunday) there is the big Germanna Reunion with a number of events at several locations.  I won�t attempt to recount all the activities in which you can participate but I will leave it to you to consult the web page at  I have sent in our (the plural refers to Eleanor and myself) reservations so I expect to see a number of you.

Later in July, the descendants of Conrad Amberger will meet in Kentucky.  This annual event has been held for a number of years.  Though the Ambergers are not commonly found at the Germanna meetings, there was one year in which 19 of them came.

Then in September, the East Tennessee Germanna Reunion will be held on the 10th and 11th.  I missed this last year but I expect to be there this year.  Probably following this, we will head to Albuquerque to visit some important people there for perhaps a month.  If someone wishes to organize a meeting in New Mexico, Arizona, or Southern California, I will give consideration to attending.

Sgt. George (George Durman) just sent some instructions pertaining to this on at least two of the sublists.  I copy from them:  "Don�t forget the East Tennessee Germanna/Broyles Reunion on 10 and 11 September, held at the Cumberland Presbyterian Church in the Philadelphia community of Washington County, TN." This Reunion is for all Germanna families.
(17 Jun 05)

Nr. 2131:

The Garr Genealogy, a very early book by J. W. Garr and J. C. Garr, gave the family of Lewis Fisher and his wife Anna Barbara Blankenbaker.  Neither of these latter people is a Garr/Gaar descendant but several of their descendants had Garr ancestors.  The Garr Genealogy gave the family as consisting of these children:

Adam, who married Elisabeth Gaar
Barnett, who married Eve Wilhoit
Stephen, who married Mary Magdalena Gaar
Eve, who married Mark Finks
Margaret, who married ____ Watts
(child), who married ____ Kalfus
Elisabeth, who married Nicholas Wilhoit

Similar errors were made in "Fisher Families of the Southern States".  Examination of several documents, including the Hebron Church Register, the will of Lewis Fisher, and the will of Adam Fisher, is helpful.  These collectively show that there should be five children as follows:

Stephen, who married Mary Magdalena Gaar
Adam, who married Elisabeth Gaar
Barnett, who married Eve Wilhoit
Eve, who married Mark Finks, Jr.
Mary Margaret, who married Nicholas Wilhoit

The Hebron Baptismal Register and the Hebron Communion Lists show clearly that the name of the wife of Nicholas Wilhoit was Mary Margaret, not Elisabeth.  Stephen, Adam, and Barnett appear frequently in the Baptismal Register as parents and as sponsors, especially for each other.  Eve appears also in the Baptismal Register, not as frequently, but often enough to confirm her membership in the family.

The will of Adam and the approval of Adam Fisher for the marriage of his daughter to Frederick Kalfus show that two of the children given in the Garr Genealogy were grandchildren of Lewis and Anna Barbara, not children.  On another page of The Garr Genealogy (page 519) there is a suggestion that a girl who would be the age of a daughter of Lewis and Anna Barbara married Michael Souther, but the book gives no child of Lewis and Anna Barbara who marries a Souther.

More details are given in Beyond Germanna on page 471.
(18 Jun 05)

Nr. 2132:

In the last Note, we saw that in The Gaar Genealogy (a book published in 1894), the family of Lewis Fisher and Anna Barbara Blankenbaker was in error (see page 521).  Two of the children listed were actually ,and the name of one daughter was given incorrectly.  The history behind this record is that it was obtained by John Wesley Garr, the father, in 1849 when he visited Madison, Virginia.  I hope this establishes that The Garr Genealogy does obtain errors.

There is another family in which there is an error, namely the family of John Wilhoit, "one of the four brothers from Germany."  It was not recognized that Johann Michael Willheit was the father.  The wife of John Wilhoit is given in The Garr Genealogy as Margaret (Peggy) Weaver.  This is an error as her name was Waldburga (or Walburga).  That this is her name is shown in the church and civil records where she is called Burga and Wabburie.

An analysis of her case, based in part on the work of Johni Cerny and Gary Zimmerman, is in Beyond Germanna on page 321.  Here it is shown that John Wilhoit and wife Burga attended the German Lutheran Church ("Hebron") in Culpeper County as communicants.  Her name was also recorded in 1778 (see Mielke and Blankenbaker, "Hebron" Communion Lists).

The civil records provide another vital clue.  When Alexander Spotswood used 48 names as head rights, one of the names was Wabburie Wever (Weaver), who was a part of the family of Joseph Wever and Susanna (Clore) Wever.  That she was not listed among the people who departed Gemmingen in 1717 suggests that she was born on the trip.

There was no other individual in the community who appears to have had the name Waldburga.  That Burga was a member of the Weaver family and the Clore family is suggested strongly by the associations in the Communion Lists at the church.  The name Margaret or Peggy is an error.  Yet, the Garr work is held in so much regard that people insist on giving the wife of John Wilhoit as Waldburga (Margaret or Peggy) Weaver or as Margaret (Waldburga) Weaver.  Let's face it � the name Margaret is an error and there is no evidence to support this.

John Wilhoit and Lewis Fisher and their wives were not descendants of Andreas Gaar and Eva Seidelmann.  The families of John and Lewis, and some others, were included in a supplement section at the back of the book.  The suggestion from the analysis of the last two notes is the Gaars did not research these families as carefully as they did most of their work.

Among the families who were Garr descendants, there are some errors also, and a couple of examples showing this will be given later.
(20 Jun 05)

Nr. 2133:

Continuing the discussion of errors in the book, "Genealogy of the Descendants of John Gar, or More Particularly of His Son, Andreas Gaar", a.k.a. the "Garr Genealogy", the ages that the authors estimate for the daughters of Michael Blankenbaker and Elizabeth Barbara Garr are significantly in error.

Rosina was confirmed in 1785 at age 18 so her birth year would be 1766/67, and not 1763 as estimated by the author.

Eleanor was confirmed at age 16 in 1782 so she was born 1765/66, and not in 1755 as estimated in the book.

Jemima was confirmed in 1777, age unknown, but a typical age of 17 would yield a birth year of about 1760, not 1745 as given in the book (a fifteen-year error!).

Using the age of husbands, one known birthday, and the years in which children appear, the following is a better estimate of the birth years:

Margaret, *1749
Elizabeth, *1752
Mary, *1754
Jemima, *1760
Christina, *1763
Eleanor, *1765
Rosanna, *1767

Probably, between Mary and Jemima there were one or two other children who did not live.

One could draw the conclusion that the Garrs, father and son, did not make use of the Communion Lists at the German Lutheran Church ("Hebron"), where the ages of many people at their confirmation are recorded.  As a consequence many people are following the Garrs in the "Garr Geneology" and using their estimates of the birth years, which are seriously in error for several of the girls.  (There were no boys in the family.)

Though the Communion Lists are hard to read, they have been transcribed and published by Andreas Mielke and me (and we also drew upon the work of Nancy Dodge).  There is more to the Lists than a tabulation of names, but one must work hard to ferret out the information.
(28 Jun 05)

Nr. 2134:

In recent notes, I have looked at some errors in the "Garr Genealogy".  I will look at another one starting with this Note, which may take more than one Note.  In the last Note we saw that Mary Blankenbaker was born about 1754 (as opposed to the Garr's estimate of 1747).  She married Daniel Wilhoit, who was the son of John Wilhoit and Walburga Weaver.  The second child in the family of Daniel and Mary was another Mary, who was born 25 Sept 1776, as recorded in the German Lutheran Church Register ("Hebron").  According to the Garr Genealogy, this Mary never married, and, by implication, was not the parent of a child.

But, information is available showing that Mary was the mother of a daughter, Lourena.  No one claims to know who the father of Lourena was.  The important point is that Lourena left descendants, who have been at a disadvantage in locating their proper place.  Lourena married James Wesley Garr and another question is raised as to where he fits in the Garr family.

The principal record is the Bible Record of the family of Lourena Wilhoite and James Wesley Garr.  A copy of this was made by Wilma Van Gordon and it reads:

James Wesley Garr born August 17, 1810
Lourena Wilhoit born December 8, 1817
Mary Wilhoit (mother of Lourena) born December 25, 1776
James Wesley Garr and Lourena Wilhoit married September 23, 1835

Malinda Jane June 12, 1836
James Leonard April 23, 1838
Jonas Franklin September 3, 1840
Mary Frances November 24, 1842
William Daniel June 14, 1845
Henry Winfield October 15, 1847
Margaret Ann November 5, 1849
Felix Jefferson February 28, 1852
Laura Virginia January 27, 1854
Alonzo Wesley February 18, 1857
Emily Catherine July 24, 1859
Lucetta Ellen July 23, 1863

[There is more to the Bible record which will be reported later.  All of these facts were brought to my attention by Shirley Venrick, who wrote an article in Beyond Germanna on page 671.]
(29 Jun 05)

Nr. 2135:

[Continuing with the Bible record of Lourena Wilhite and James Wesley Garr.]

Mary Frances Garr, Abraham Blankenbaker November 7, 1861
James Leonard Garr, Melenia Elizabeth Aylor October 26, 1865
Henry Winfield, Mary Huffman June 17, 1874
Malinda Jane Garr, Jacob Stover December 4, 1880
Lucretta Ellen Garr, James B. Long August 8, 1885
Laura Virginia Garr, Morris Carlos June 26, 1894

James Wesley June 3, 1885
Lourena Garr August 16, 1905
Margaret Ann December 15, 1849
William D. Garr 69 yrs, 2 mos, 3 days
Emily Catherine June 8, 1920
Malinda Jane Stover July 27, 1920
Mary Frances Blankenbaker February 1928 [no year given]
Henry Winfield June 14, 1927
Lucetta Ellen Long October 27, 1934
Felix Jefferson October 25, 1882
James Leonard May 26, 1919
Morris Carlos March 23, 1932
Laura Carlos February 12, 1939

Other records which bear on the family of James Wesley Garr and Lourena Wilhoit include the census of 1850 (Madison Co., VA, p.88, dwelling #487)

James W. Garr 40
Lourena 33
Malinda 16
James L. 12
Lorenzo F. 10
Mary Frances 9
William D. 6
Henry W. 3

All of these individuals were born in Virginia.
(30 Jun 05)

Nr. 2136:

[Continuing the discussion of the family of James Wesley Garr and Lourena Wilhoit.]

This family moved, at some time between 1850 and 1870, from Virginia to Indiana, where they appear in the 1870 census (Delaware County, Niles Township, Monroe Post Office, reel M 593, roll 310, p.12):

James Garr 59
Lourena 53
Malinda J. 34
Jonas F. 29
William 25
Henry W. 22
Felix J. 18
Laura 16
Alonzo 13
Emily C. 10
Lucetta E. 6

The marriage certificate for James and Lourena is in Madison Co., VA, and is dated 22 Sept 1835.  Her mother, Mary (X) Wilhoit, gave her permission.  The death certificate for Lourena is in Niles Township, Delaware Co., IN:  "Date of Birth is December 8, 1817; Date of death is August 16, 1905; widow; Father is unknown; Mother is Mary Wilhoit; Information by W. D. Garr."

The identity of James Wesley Garr who married Lourena Wilhoit has not been resolved.  An individual of this name with the specified birthday and a wife of Lourena is not in the "Garr Genealogy".  Considering the location of Madison County and the name Garr, there can hardly be any doubt that this is a descendant of Andreas Garr who did not make it into the family record.  I have looked through the book but I can�t find a likely place to put the man.  Perhaps his father and mother are also missing.

I also know that the family of a great-grandmother of mine, Mary Garr Finks, who married Julius Blankenbeker, is rather badly done in the book.  The point of this recent series talking about the "Garr Genealogy" is that it does contain errors.  Like all printed material, it is not to be trusted, but used only as a guide.  The current feature article on Burga on shows that thousands of people have been misled by the "Garr Genealogy" in calling the wife of John Wilhoit, son of the immigrant Michael Willheit, as Margaret (Peggy).
(01 Jul 05)

Nr. 2137:

The book, "Ortsgeschicte Trupbach", by D. Troeps and U. Bohn, should be must-read for anyone with ancestors from Trupbach.  True, the book is written in German but there is enough in the book to make it worthwhile for English readers, especially if they use a German to English dictionary on occasion.  I bought my copy in Trupbach in the year 2000, but I understand that the book is still available.

In Beyond Germanna (page 712, vol. 12, n.6), I reported on a study of the Trupbach occupations.  This is an excellent example of what life was like in the village.  I did this for the Eighteenth and Nineteenth Centuries (1700's and 1800's), so it applies to the time of emigration to America.  The following occupations are mentioned:

Miner Carpenter Wheelwright Wood Turner
Forge Worker Smith Clockmaker Linen Weaver
Tailor Shoemaker Mason Thatcher

The list is incomplete because these occupations are incidental mentions in other records, such as marriage or tax records.

In the 1600's, a miner is mentioned once, and, in the 1700's, two miners are mentioned, one in 1780 and one in 1785.  In other words, Trupbach in 1713 was not a mining town.  In the 1800's, it became a mining town because the new technologies permitted deep mining.  At this time there was a significant expansion of the town and twenty miners are mentioned in the records.

The most popular trade was carpentry.  A trade often ran in a family and a house would harbor several generations of people in the same trade.  Consider the house "Kursch" where Jost Schneider was a carpenter from 1612 to 1637.  His son, Jost, was also a carpenter.  Then his son-in-law, Johannes Otterbach was a carpenter in 1704.  Johannes� son-in-law, Johann Henrich Cursch, was a carpenter in 1736, followed by his son-in-law, Johann Jacob Heide, and Heide�s son-in-law, Johann Ludwig Jung in 1806.

There was a similar but shorter story for the house "Feys", for the house "Koelsch", and for the house "Knipps".  The latter house is of special interest to Fischbach descendants.  Philipp Fischbach was a carpenter in 1683.  His sons, Herman and Johann, were also carpenters.  The records add that the sons were married in 1714 and emigrated to USA in 1714.  These latter statements are the result of additions made to the records long after the actual event.  No one could have said in 1714 there was a USA.  In another place it reads 1712 for 1714 and both of these are incorrect.  Though the sons have a notation that they emigrated, there is no such remark for the father.  The original records ought to be checked again.


Two Notes ago, the Bible Record said that Lourena Wilhoit was born in December of 1776.  Checking the original records at the German Lutheran Church, the month was clearly September of 1776 and she was baptized in the following month.
(05 Jul 05)

Nr. 2138:

In Trupbach, we are looking at the occupations of the residents of the village at about the time that our ancestors left for America.

There were two wheelwrights mentioned, Johann Friedrich Jung and Johann Heinrich Jung, who were father and son.  They overlapped in time in the year 1713. Three joiners or cabinet makers were mentioned and no relationship among them is given.  Their last names were NOELL, WALPERSDORF, and HENK.  All of these were later than 1713 so that it is impossible to say there were joiners in 1713.  There were also wood turners, who were later.  Their surnames were NOELL, NOELL (son of the previous), GIEBELER, NOELL, and KORSTIAN.  Both of these occupations may have reflected the period of growth in connection with mining in the 1800's.

Again, sometime after 1713, there were several forge workers, the earliest of whom was in 1743.  They, too, may be the result of the later mining activity.  Their surnames were SCHNEIDER, SCHUSS and his son, HIEDE, BECKER and his two sons and a grandson who comes down to 1862.

The two (black) smiths, WICKEL and STRACKE, were much later, in 1862.

An unusual occupation for a village the size of Trupbach was clockmaker.  There were several such men of the house Urmeiersch.  They were Christoffel RICHTER (1666); Johannes, his son, in 1704; Herman, the son of Johannes, in 1738; and Johann Henrich HOFFMAN, the son-in-law of Herman in 1773.

There were five linen weavers, the earliest mentioned in 1745, but probably the occupation was present before then.  Surnames were STEIN, twice SCHNEIDER, KLASS, and REUTER.

The two tailors seem to be of a later period, as are the two shoemakers.
There were also two masons and two thatchers, all in the 1800s.
There were three innkeepers, but all in the 1800s.

The occupations tended to run in families with the job passed from father to son, or to son-in-law.  Since guilds existed for many of these occupations, the fathers probably used their influence to get their relatives admitted as apprentices to the guild.

It would be totally impossible to conclude that Trupbach in the early 1700's was, in any way, connected with the mining or metal working industries.
(06 Jul 05)

Nr. 2139:

In 1725, the village of Trupbach (now a part of Siegen) was a small village of 25 homes.  These homes, as well as their location and occupants, are identifiable.  These have been reported in the book "Trupbach 1389-1989, Ortsgeschichte in Texten and Bildern" (Local History in Text and Pictures).  The authors were Udo Bohn, who died before the book was finished, and Dieter Troeps, who finished the book.  The twenty-five houses were (house name; occupant; when built):

HOUSE NAME Occupant When Built
WAENRSCH Friedrich Jung,
who married Elsbeth Heide
before 1660
KURSCH Multiple before 1650
HEIDE Elsbeth (Noeh) Zimmerman before 1680
WESE Johann Becker�s widow after 1563
WISSKOPPS Johannes Heide before 1650
WICKELS Jost Otterbach before 1680
WAGNERSCH Hermanus Schneider and
Johannes Schneider
before 1611
(now destroyed)
Johannes Richter about 1640
FELDES Johannes Schneider about 1640
SCHUSS Johannes Goebel, married
Johannes Klappert�s widow
before 1670
BAECKERSCH Johannes Becker before 1680,
rebuilt in 1948
HELMES Johannes Schneider before 1660
RECKSCHMETTS Johannes Schneider,
the younger
before 1680
WELMES Hermanus Otterbach before 1680
(A house no
longer standing)
Johannes Otterbach before 1600
WISSE Johannes Wisse before 1650
MERTES Jost Fishbach
(no descendants)
before 1650
KROMME Johannes Jung before 1650
HUJJE Nicklas Hugo,
married Cathrin Arnold
before 1650
HETTCHENS (KNIPPS) Philipp Fischbach about 1690
HAEMIGES Hermanus Lueck, married
Maria E. Heymbach
about 1600
JOAGEWES Johannes Schneider,
married Chr. Schneider
before 1680

One of these houses has been taken down, I believe, in recent years.

I have often wondered if the families in the Robinson River Valley by the name of Becker and one of the Schneider families were perhaps from Trupbach, or more generally from Nassau-Siegen.  By the time that these names appear in the Robinson River Valley, there were already several families from the Nassau-Siegen region there.  This is why I like to identify the area as the Robinson River Valley and not as the Hebron community.  There were many people living there who were not Lutheran, as Hebron would imply.  Furthermore, the name Hebron is a Nineteenth Century name, not an Eighteenth Century name.
(07 Jul 05)

Nr. 2140:

In the previous note, the names of the houses reflect several sources.  Sometimes the house is named for the builder or for the first occupant.  The name of the house the Richters were living in (UHRMEIERSCH) is after the occupation of the inhabitants, who seemed to be clockmakers for several generations.  This Richter house no longer stands, a victim of World War II.  The paving for the ground floor, made from stones, still exists.  A shed for farm implements has been built where the house stood.  Another house, BAECKERSCH, was so badly damaged during WWII that it was rebuilt in 1948.

Nearly all of the houses followed the plan of the Richter house, in that the first floor was used for the animals.  The second floor was used for the humans, while the third floor was used for hay storage.  Pictures in the "Trupbach Ortsgeschichte" show that this was still the use in the period up to WWII.  Thus, the village presents a strong agricultural view and the agricultural pursuits consumed a major part of the time of the inhabitants, women and children included.  Today, the buildings are used differently and, without the need for animal care, the house is often split up into a duplex.  There are still farmers who live in the village.  Their fields are outside the village.

Community bakeries were standard and they were located on the edge of the village.  This was a fire prevention measure.  Today, one of these bakeries has been restored and is in use.  My wife and I purchased a loaf of bread (we intended to purchase a loaf but they insisted on giving it to us).

Some early family names and the earliest dates for the names follow:

Baumgarten 1631 Becker 1629
Brass 1628 Brandt 1632
Duester 1638 Dirlenbach 1627
Fischbach 1628 Heide 1618
Helm 1649 Holdinghausen 1659
Jung 1618 Kolb 1624
Lueck 1675 Loehr 1651
Otterbach ca 1618 Riefenrad 1626
Richter 1666 Schneider 1599
Schmidt 1659 Stuell 1628
Strack 1632 Wisse 1676
Zimmerman 1624    

(08 Jul 05)

Nr. 2141:

There exists a Tax List for Trupbach for the year 1566.  This is quite early, about 150 years before the departure of a number of people for America.  Only seventeen households or units are recognized.  We were looking recently at the ages of the houses and few of them, if any, went back to 1566.  Surnames were in use by that date, but many people are identified by their relationship to another person.

The surnames mentioned are:

Meisswinkel Schneider Zimmerman Herman
Michel Zimmerman Demuth (no surname, a single female farm laborer) Barben
(Heinrich's son)
of Heinbach
(Hannes' son)
Treina (no surname, but Joerg�s holy widow) Johannes
(Heiten's son)
Becker Hanns of the Weiss Leineweber Heyman
(only name)

Of these names, we recognize immediately the Schneiders, who continue to have a presence in Trupbach.  All seventeen of the households had at least one cow, which must have been regarded as a necessity.  Fifteen of the households had swine.  The breeding of pigs was probably in the hands of a few people who sold young piglets to their neighbors.  Eleven of the households had sheep.  Only four of the households had horses (another had a colt).  The cows were used by most of the people as their draft animals (oxen).  This practice continued well into the period of photography, as several pictures in the book, Trupbach Ortsgeschichte, show.  The cow was a more fundamental animal than the horse, as it was a source of food and a working animal.  From the tax list we see that one cow was worth two heifers or four pigs or eight sheep.  A horse was rated at several times the value of a cow.

Meadows were rated highly, even above fields.  Most of the places had a garden, and some were taxed for an orchard.  Fourteen of the units had an interest in a hauberg*, which was valued highly.

Another eleven had an interest in forest land.  Two of the families (one Schneider and Heiten�s son) were well enough off that they seemed to have held bonds, probably against money they had lent.

The highest taxes were paid by Herman Schneider and Henn Schneider.  Herman�s taxes were more than twice the average.  He was taxed for a house, barn, grounds, tree farm, meadow, fields, garden, hauberg, forest, colt, 2 cows, a heifer, and 6 sheep.  His most valuable possession was the meadows, followed closely by the hauberg.  Each of these was more than twice the house, barn, grounds and tree farm taken together.  The lowest tax was applied to Demuth, the single female farm laborer, who was taxed for "all her goods" and one cow.  Her possessions were only 1/30 of the value of Herman Schneider�s.

(*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 Siegerl�nder Hauberg (In German)  (Click on "Haubergsarbeiten im Jahreslauf", "Der historische Hauberg", and "Einf�hrung" 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)
(11 Jul 05)

Nr. 2142:

In the last note, I mentioned Haubergs.  This requires some explanation.  Haubergs originated centuries ago, apparently as a political solution to a thorny problem of resource allocation.

There was a demand for oak bark to use in the tanneries.  There was a demand for wood to make charcoal.  There was a demand to have wood for heating and cooking in homes.  There was a need to grow grain.  To meet these competing demands, the leaders (princes?) in the communities set up societies to which the property owners had to belong.  Apparently the Hauberg rights could not be separated from the home.  If you bought a home, you became a member of the Hauberg society.

One Hauberg society seemed to own the land in common among many homes.  The tract was divided into about twenty parcels.  In any one year, the oak trees on one parcel would be cut down.  Before cutting the tree, the bark would be pealed up the tree for about twelve feet and left hanging to dry.  After the bark was dry, it was cut off the tree and taken to the tannery.

Then the tree would be cut down.  The stem of the tree would be about six inches in diameter.  This was used for making charcoal.  The small parts of the tree would be carefully saved and bundled up.  These were distributed among the owners of the Hauberg for cooking and heating.

The stump was not removed from the ground.  It was left in place and would send up sprouts which would become the future oak trees.  While the oak was small, the land could also be used for another purpose, namely growing grain.  Plowing the earth would be difficult because of the oak roots.  The surface was scratched by having cattle pull a shovel-like "plow" across the earth.  Seed would be distributed and brushing the earth would cover up the grain.  The grain would be harvested with a scythe or sickle.  This could be done several years until the oaks shaded the ground too much and sapped the water resources in the ground.  Some grazing might be done then.

In the next year, this pattern would be repeated on another one of the twenty plots.  So every year there was a yield of wood and bark and grain.  The whole process was not very efficient but was a political solution to competing demands.

In Nassau-Siegen, there is a demonstration Hauberg being developed at Fellinghausen, not far from Oberholtzklau.  One can visit there and see the process in all of its stages.  Or, if you can�t go, you can see the pictures that I have made available on the Photographic Essay that Eleanor and I have done on a CD.  (Go here for information on how to order the CD, which contains ALL of our German and Austrian photos.)  (You can also see some of the "Hauberg" photos on The Fellinghausen Hauberg Photos page on this website.)
(12 Jul 05)

Nr. 2143:

The 2005 Germanna Reunion is now history and it should be remembered as one of the best ones.  The program has been outlined in the Foundation�s Web site and I will not attempt to enumerate all of the activities.  I will mention the ones that I attended, though.

On Friday evening, there was a barbeque dinner at the Madison County fire house where they had the foresight to build a large meeting room for a variety of purposes.  We spent about two hours there, maybe more, in greeting people and talking to them and at the actual dinner.  After the dinner we all drove about two miles to the Hebron Lutheran Church.  There was a delightful program there in which the stars were Sven and Olaf Schneider, who were born in Trupbach.  They are now profession musicians and live elsewhere.  Sven is a specialist on the organ, but also plays the piano and sings.  Olaf specializes in the trombone.  So our concert at Hebron was organ music on the 1802 Tannenberg organ, accompanied by the trombone.  The Schneiders, along with their father, Rudi, and Rudi�s friend, all paid their own way to America where they gave several concerts.  When we took up a collection for the Schneiders, I believe that everyone opened up their hearts and purses in response.  (I certainly hope so.)

On Saturday, we started early with the Seminar which had four speakers over the course of the day.  I will have to take another Note to comment a bit about these presentations.  At the end of the Seminar, I went with other Clore descendants to a small reception at Skip Poole�s at the Lake of the Wood.  They allow me to come, even though I am not a descendant of Michael Clore, since I do descend from his sister Susanna.  Later we met at Salubria for dinner under the tent and more conversation.  The night closed with the auction of items brought by members which were sold for the benefit of the Foundation.

[The Foundation itself sold a new copy of Germanna Record Five (normally it sells for $35.00) in which the contents were bound upside down from the cover.  To help out auctioneer Michael Oddenino (who needs very little help), I made a bid of $10.00 and no one bid any higher.  Since I already own the book, I have no need for a second copy though it is apt to appreciate as that famous airmail stamp did.  So if anyone would like to relieve me of this, send me an email.  I was going to give it to the African-American Heritage Society of Fauquier County (members of which were present in the vendor�s room on Saturday), but they did not come back on Sunday which is the Lord�s Day.]

Sunday was a big day but I have run out of space here so it will have to wait.  The highlight of the day was meeting the President of the United States.
(18 Jul 05)

Nr. 2144:

The Sunday Germanna Reunion was interrupted by a visitor.  Thomas Jefferson was traveling from Washington City to his Aerie near Charlottesville, but he had stopped at Zimmerman's Inn in Stevensburg.  Hearing that we were meeting, he came over to say, "Hello."  He was especially interested in meeting the Germans, as he had given a legal opinion concerning the will of Adam Wayland.  Incidentally, his opinion was on the "winning" side, though it is not clear how much his views influenced the judges.

Unfortunately, Mr. Jefferson thought that the year was 1805 and he seemed to know nothing of what happened after that date.  He did have opinions about the future of these United States in which he was hopeful.  He took some note with pride of the success that had been achieved in this new nation where the voice of the people was to be heard.  He introduced some new customs in Washington City such as having his guests shake hands and not bow.

He was aware of the petition submitted by the German Congregation of the County of Culpepper, in October of 1776, to the President and Delegates of the Convention of the Commonwealth of Virginia.  In this petition we asked for relief from the tithes to support the State Church in addition to our own Church.  Relief was not forthcoming immediately and Mr. Jefferson told us some of the reasons.  He favored the complete separation of the Church from the affairs of the state but his views did not win acceptance immediately.

He was proud of the fact that when he began as President the number of Federal employees was 75 but that he had reduced that number to 68.  There was no doubt that we were listening to President Thomas Jefferson as he looked exactly like all of the pictures that I have seen of him.  And his mannerisms accorded with the published accounts.  There was no reason to doubt that we were listening to our third President.

Mr. Jefferson is reincarnated today at Williamsburg where he may be visited.  Helping him is Bill Barker, who fell into the job of assisting him when someone commented that he looked like Thomas Jefferson and asked him to impersonate Jefferson.  Since Mr. Barker had trained as an actor, he succeeded very well in this role, and by his studies of Jefferson's time he became well acquainted with the questions being raised, and by the people who were proposing and opposing the ideas.  So he is in an excellent position to answer questions from the populace.  His routine is not entirely fixed.

If you visit Williamsburg, do drop in for a visit with Thomas Jefferson, who sometimes is in a different year and a different role.
(19 Jul 05)

Nr. 2145:

After President Jefferson left us at the Germanna Reunion, we heard Sven and Olaf Schneider on the piano and trombone.  Unfortunately, the piano at the College was not in tune but they still put on an excellent program of national anthems, old favorites, and a few hymns.  Their father and two brothers are also musicians.  (When the last German Heritage Tour visited Trupbach, the group was welcomed by a brass band in which Rudi Schneider, the father, was playing the trumpet.)

After the program ended, we ate lunch at the College.  At two o'clock, the group assembled at the Visitor�s Center for a dedication of benches and the Germanna flag.  The Foundation had never had a flag and a generous member paid for the design and purchase of several copies of the flag.

In the package of the registration material, there was a financial balance sheet for the Foundation.  This was a novel item which has been omitted since Mr. Carpenter was the treasurer.  Essentially, the balance sheet shows that the Foundation is the custodian for some very valuable properties which do not produce any income such as the land, Salubria, and the Visitor's Center.  These require money for their support and upkeep.  The major sources of income are membership dues, the sale of books and other items, and the Reunion.

The Foundation looks to sponsor activities which offer benefits to the members and which earn it some money.  The Heritage Tours to Germany are very popular and, besides earning a little money for the Foundation, build ties to the "fatherland".    Next February, the Foundation will try another new activity, a week's cruise in the Caribbean, during which Germanna lectures will be offered while "at sea".  Naturally, lectures require lecturers.  Thom Faircloth and I have volunteered to do this.  If you are interested in this, contact the Foundation for information.  At the Reunion, Skip Poole was taking expressions of interest and it looks as though there will be enough people to make the trip worthwhile.  (Another Heritage Tour next year has also been announced and these continue to be sellouts.)

Thom Faircloth announced that special activities will mark the Reunion next year, which will be the fiftieth Reunion of the Foundation.  For those of you making advance plans, the Reunion will be held on July 14, 15, and 16 (Friday through Sunday).  I have not mentioned here the typical Friday activities but they consist of tours in the area and family meetings.
(20 Jul 05)

Nr. 2146:

I was a bit short on the information for the Caribbean cruise so I will add some information.  The dates are 18 Feb 2006, to leave Tampa, Florida, (a Saturday) and return to Tampa on the next Saturday.  In between, the ship (Veendam) will call at Georgetown, Grand Cayman, Ocho Rios, Jamaica, and Costa Maya in Mexico.  For more information contact Skip or Joy Poole at 262 Washington Street, Locust Grove, VA 22508-5137 (The email address is [email protected]).  Skip said at the Reunion that interest was running very high.

At the Seminar there were four speakers and I will mention the talks of two of them.  One, because I know it well (I have my lecture notes, which I did not use) and, the second, because it had very novel and interesting points.

I talked on Alexander Spotswood's retirement plans, which had four distinct phases.  In addition to these, he also was Postmaster General and a General in the Army, but these two were merely taking advantage of opportunities which arose and were not part of any long term plan.  From the beginning of his arrival in Virginia in 1710, Spotswood had his eyes open for his future since he realized how uncertain the job of Lt. Gov. was.  At several times during his position as Lt. Gov. he must have felt that the end was near, for he did not fit the pattern of the Virginia men who were in charge.  He stood in opposition to them in several ways.  For example, even though he initially made friends with people such as William Byrd, this friendship soured for a number of years while Byrd tried to get Spotswood removed.  The geography of Virginia had a major impact on the events of the early Eighteenth Century.  When Spotswood came, civilization was encroaching on the Piedmont, where the Indians lived, where the metals were, and where the large quantities of good land lay.  These factors had a major impact on the retirement plans of Spotswood.  Four distinct activities can be recognized.  I summarize these with key words, namely:  Silver, Indian Trading, Land, and Iron.  Willis Kemper, writing at the end of the Nineteenth Century, put iron as the first and major activity that Spotswood engaged in.  Actually, this was the last phase of his retirement plans.  He did not engage in this in a major way until after the Fort Germanna Germans had left for their own land at Germantown.  Because Kemper went astray, three generations of historians since them have been seriously misled.

For the first two or three years of his duties in Virginia, Spotswood was heavily engaged in the duties of being Governor.  He promoted the interests of the Crown, which were at odds at with the ways things were done in Virginia.  In this initial period, it was brought home to Spotswood that, besides promoting the Crown's interest, he should promote his own interests.
(21 Jul 05)

Nr. 2147:

The first activity for which Spotswood had high hopes for providing an independent income was silver.  Even before the Germans had left, but not by much, he had invested, as a quarter owner, in land that was thought to contain silver.  Because he and his partners could not be sure of the percentage of the silver that would be theirs if silver were found, he worked with Col. Nathaniel Blakiston in London, who was the agent for Virginia.  It was Blakiston, working with Graffenried and the Germans, that sent the Germans on to Virginia, partially at Spotswood�s expense.

Spotswood had a fort built at Germanna at the expense of the government.  The rationale for this was that the Germans would be a buffer between the English and the Indians.  It went unmentioned that a few miles away was the land where it was hoped there would be silver.  Because the percentage of silver that finders could keep was never defined, the silver mining activity was more of a hope than any actual activity.  It does appear that Spotswood finally let the Germans work the ores starting in the Spring of 1716.  By the Fall of 1716, it was becoming evident that there was no silver.

Spotswood never earned a farthing from silver, while his personal expenses probably did not greatly exceed the 150 pounds Sterling that he had paid on the German�s transportation.  In the process, over a few years, he did patent about 6,000 acres around Germanna.  Apparently, he planned to lease this to the Germans, and he did give the excuse that the second half of this land was taken up for the benefit of the Germans.  The land more than paid for the transportation costs of the Germans.

Before he had written off the silver mine(s), he started the second of his retirement plans.  He had observed the chaotic nature of Indian trading.  Earlier, this had been very profitable to number of people, especially to the Byrd family, where William Byrd�s father had been very successful.  As time went by, the trade became very chaotic as many people entered the business, many of them consisting of just one or two people.  They had a difficult time making a profit, as they had little bargaining power in London where they bought their trading goods, and where they sold their furs.  They had to "cheat" the Indians in order to make a profit.

Spotswood envisioned that a legal monopoly could have an easier time wherein the Indians would be treated more fairly.  The Colony of Virginia passed legislation creating the Virginia Indian Trading Company which was to be privately owned.  Spotswood became an investor in this, as did some of his relatives who were probably stand-ins for him.  Even though Spotswood and his partners were aware that the legislation creating the Trading Company would have to be approved in London, they went ahead with their plans before this approval was obtained.  The company was to be located at Christanna, where a fort, somewhat more substantial than Fort Germanna, was built.  Christanna was almost at the North Carolina border, about due south of the future town of Richmond.
(25 Jul 05)

Nr. 2148:

It is essential to understand that legislation passed in Virginia had to be approved in London.  There it might be rejected, amended, or accepted.  This particularly applied to unusual legislation, and to laws which affected trade between Virginia and Great Britain.  As an example, Virginia once passed a law that convicts could no longer be sent to Virginia.  A person in England brought up the point that he had a contract to transport convicts to Virginia and if Virginia refused to accept these convicts then he could no longer fulfill his contract.  The law was overturned because it interfered with trade between England and Virginia.

In the first few months that he was on the job as Lt. Gov., Alexander Spotswood proposed that the Colony of Virginia set up an "iron works" to mine and smelt iron ore for shipment to England.  The arguments that he gave for this enterprise were excellent.  The Board of Trade by a return letter warned him that any Virginia legislation which set up an iron works might be judged to be an interference with trade.  It also warned him that any investment that might be made in this iron works could be lost.  These were hardly the words to encourage anyone to invest in iron works which would cost from 5,000 to 10,000 pounds Sterling.

That a warning of this nature could possibly have some real teeth in it was brought home to Spotswood by what happened to the Virginia Indian Trading Company, of which he was a partner.  This was judged to be an interference in the established trade patterns and it was not allowed.  The people who were probably complaining the most were the suppliers of the trade goods and the purchasers of the furs in London.  The Virginia Indian Trading Company, as the only body authorized to trade with the Indians, could drive harder bargains in England for the trade goods they were buying and for the furs they were selling.  The English merchants complained that this was a monopolistic practice which should not be allowed and they won their point.  Spotswood and his partners were told to abandon the Indian Trading Company.  They may have recovered some of their investment, but it was a net loss to them as the legislation establishing the Indian Trading Company was overthrown.

There are two points to be observed here.  First, trading with the Indians would not become an element in Spotswood's retirement plan.  Second, any iron works might be subject to the same action, i.e., overthrown in England on trivial grounds.  This is one of the major reasons that Spotswood was very slow to get into iron smelting and manufacturing.  He could not be sure that his investment would stand up.  So, he sought other activities to earn a retirement income.  As we will see, iron was the last activity that he engaged in.

Before the Indian trading was overthrown, Spotswood was very optimistic about the possibilities here.  In the next Note, we will examine some of the evidence.
(26 Jul 05)

Nr. 2149:

Before the Virginia Indian Trading Company legislation was cancelled, Alexander Spotswood had high hopes that it would be a very profitable enterprise.  We can gather this from a letter of Richard Beresford written on July 4, 1716.  In this, he writes that the Governor is now building a handsome house near Christanna (the base of the Indian Trading Company).  The house was expected to cost about five or six hundred Pounds.  Other people were also being encouraged by the Governor's example, and they too were building houses there.

The implication of these remarks is that Spotswood was preparing to abandon Germanna.  There was nothing there to draw him to that place.  There were no mines.  He did have some land, not a major amount, which he planned on leasing to the Germans.  This would require little attention on his part.

Beresford also mentioned that a company of twelve Rangers had discovered a passage through the mountains between the Rappahannock and the Potomac Rivers.  [This would exclude Swift Run Gap, where several markers today announce that the trans-mountain expedition had passed.] Beresford wrote that the Governor, accompanied by three companies of Rangers and others, would perfect the discovery.  Beresford speculates that there are two reasons that Spotswood is especially interested in learning more about this pass.  One is that it will lead to new routes for trading with the Indians.  Second, he notes that several people think the Governor is looking for mines in which to employ his Germans, some of whom are miners.  Beresford also notes that [Franz Ludwig Michel] had reported to England that there were mines over the mountains and that this information had been relayed to Spotswood.

Beresford notes the Governor is under pressure from several men in Virginia where he has gained the ill will of most of the leading men in Virginia.  They had complained to London and hoped to oust him, but Spotswood answered their charges well enough to keep his job.  But he certainly realized that the Lt. Governorship was tenuous and he might lose the position at any moment.  This made the search for an alternative income very urgent.

In view of subsequent events, Spotswood looked for another enterprise to earn money to support himself in retirement and this endeavor was land.  This was a proven technique which most of the leading men in Virginia had used.  When the trans-mountain expedition was under way, we see that a major effort was the discovery of land.  He explored the land which Robert Beverley wanted to put into a land partnership, and crossed the Rapidan River to explore the land on the north side.  Past the Robinson River, the route is uncertain, but if the remarks of Beresford about the location of the pass are correct, the party probably initially followed up the Robinson River.  All of these areas fell into the land partnership which eventually became Spotswood's.
(27 Jul 05)

Nr. 2150:

Shortly after the expedition over the [Blue Ridge] mountains in 1716, Alexander Spotswood and his partners staked out 40,000 acres of land.  This started just to the west of Germanna and ran on both sides of the Rapidan River to the junction with the Robinson River, and included land to the west of the present day town of Culpeper.  This very exposed position would need settlers when it was patented, and Spotswood undertook to solve this problem.  He wanted Germans, a large group of them, to occupy the land at the same time.  Getting individuals to move this far out would not be easy.  Why Germans?  The experience with the Germans in Fort Germanna had been very good and Spotswood was impressed with their qualities.  The Fort Germanna Germans did not have enough time left on their service for Spotswood and so he needed a "fresh" batch of Germans.  He discussed the problems with the captains of ships and let them know that there was a need for which he would pay.  One of them, Andrew Tarbett, brought about 80 Germans at sometime near January 1 (by the modern calendar, 1718, though the calendar in use then would have been 1717 on January 1.)

Paying for this immense tract constituted a small problem, so Spotswood delayed patenting the land.  At the time that Spotsylvania County was formed, land in it was to be free for a period of years.  Again, this was unusual legislation and Spotswood held off on issuing the patents until 1722 when he saw that his job as Lt. Governor was likely to end.

In taking up this land, Spotswood emphasized that it was for the purpose of making naval stores, a class of commodities that King George and Parliament urged that the colonies engaged in.  This was perhaps a strategy to insure that the legislation to create Spotsylvania County with its free land would not be overturned in London.  The King and Parliament were good people to have as friends.  One of the partners of Spotswood in this enterprise was Robert Beverley, who was personally interested in grapes and wine.  This point was not emphasized by Spotswood, but Fontaine and Jones make it clear that Beverley was interested in wine.

Spotswood had been burned by the cancellation in London of the Indian Trading Company.  He was aware of how adversely the laws of Virginia or activities could be treated.  He had been warned by the Board of Trade in his first year in Virginia that legislation creating an iron works in Virginia might be overturned.  The Virginia Indian Trading Company had demonstrated that this might not be an empty threat.  Land seemed a better possibility.  It had been used by all of the powerful people in Virginia.  The only threat to the program of land acquisition was the legislation that made land in the new county of Spotsylvania free.  His best hope was to tie the use of the land that he, with his partners, took up was to put it to a use that the King and Parliament wanted implemented, namely naval stores.
(28 Jul 05)

(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 EIGHTY-SIXTH set of Notes, Nr. 2126 through Nr. 2150.)

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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