JOHAN HERMAN HECKENKEMPER 1815 – 1875
by Mary Louise Heckenkemper LeBoeuf 1930-____. March 2015
JOHAN HERMAN HECKENKEMPER was born December 5, 1815 in Oelde, Westfalen, Prussia, baptized on December 6 at Saint Johannes Katholisch Church, Oelde, Westfalen, Prussia, and died March 10, 1874 in St Louis Hospital, St. Louis, MO.
Herman is not a “real” Heckenkemper. In northwestern Prussia as far back as the 1600’s,"farm names and names that go with possessions, such as farms or possessions such as a person assuming ownership of an estate, are stronger than the family names with which a person is born.”
His name is actually Herman Seliger and not Herman Heckenkemper. The name Heckenkemper derives from his father Anton Zehliger's marriage to Catharina Elisabeth Heckenkamper who was the “yard heiress” of the Heckenkamper farm, which means she inherited the farm from her parents and the man she married then took the Heckenkemper name.
The Heckenkamper, Heckenkemper name is spelled both ways in historical church records.
Legal documents show that Herman used Heckenkemper on land purchase and other documents upon entering the United States of America in 1846.
A person’s name such as Anton Zehliger’s is not as strong and firm as the name of the farm of the Heckenkamper family he married into, and when he married Catharina, he assumed ownership of the estate and the family name. “In terms of social history: ownership comes before blood." As children were born and baptized, the first two children were usually recorded as "Zehliger “gt.” (named) Heckenkamper" and the later children as simply "Heckenkamper"
"The procedure is then as follows: The family has an established name with a farm or estate. An individual male member of the family who comes into possession of a farm or an estate, either through inheritance, marriage, or purchase, takes on its name as their family name. This new name is registered in the church books upon the entry of the marriage, or on the occasion of the baptism of the first child.
The two names then stand side by side connected by a “gt.” meaning 'called' or ‘named’.
There are many forms for the name Zehliger, Seliger, Sehliger. Z's and S's are very close phonetically, and the Germans will frequently throw in a silent "h" here or there. As far as first names are concerned, Henricus is just the Latin form of Henrich/Heinrich and Antonius is the Latin form of Anton. Henr is an abbreviation of Henrich/Heinrich.
In America spelling did not standardize until about 1850.
The Heckenkamper family can be traced back as far as Bernd Gerdes gt. Heckenkamper 1630-1679 (“gt.” shows that Bernd must have married (1) a Heckenkamper) and took the name Heckenkamper. On April 20, 1654 he married (2) Margaretha Middendorf. Bernd died in September 1679. He and Margaretha had five children all using the Heckenkamper name.
1. Gertrudis was born June 13, 1655. She married Wilhelm Hockelman
2. in 1693. He was born in Oelde in 1660.
3. Arnoldus, who was the “yard heir”, was born February 25, 1657 and married Margaretha Wewer in 1689. She was born in Oelde and died October 23, 1695. Arnold and Margaretha had seven children:
1. Herman was born about 1680 and died after November 1713 and was the “yard heir”. He married Maria Rottkotter on April 28, 1705. She died about 1726. Herman and Marie had three children:
I. Elisabeth born February 4, 1706
II. Gerturdis born October 4, 1707
III. Anna Maria born October 16, 1709
2. Henricus was born February 224, 1686
3. Jodocus was born January 18, 1688
4. Anna Maria was born January 38, 1690 and married Joan Gorges January 26, 1717.
5. Anna was born January 6, 1692
6. Joannes was born November 21, 1693
7. Catharina was born October 23, 1695.
3. Anna Maria was born November 16, 1659.
4. Margaretha was born in 1663 and died in 1693.
5. Maria (possibly the same as Anna Maria) was born in 1667 and died in 1693.
No actual connection has been found with Bernd, but Heckenkemper families currently live on the farm where Bernd lived and Johan Herman was born and received his name in Oelde, Germany and where Henrich Anton Zehliger and Elisabeth Rose Heckenkemper married.
Johan Herman’s grandfather Joannes Henric Sehliger was born about 1740 in Prussia and married Mary Elisabetha Thorman in January 1778 :in Enniger, Westphalia, Prussia. She was born October 11, 1758 in Enniger, Westphalia, Prussia and died December 6, 1826 at the age of 82 in Enniger, Westphalia, Prussia. She was the daughter of Bernard Anton Thorman who born April 13, 1710 in Enniger, Westphalia, Prussia and Anna M. Christina Bohmer who was born February, 1711 in Enniger, Westphalia, Prussia . His son:
Henrich Anton Zehliger “gt.” Heckenkemper was born December 19, 1779 in Enniger, Westphalia, Prussia and died October 14, 1858 in Keitlinghause, Westphalia, Prussia at the age of 78 years. On July 20, 1814 in Oelde, Westphalia, Prussia he married “yard heiress” Catharina Elisabeth Heckenkemper who was born December 13, 1789 and died May 17, 1814 of TB.
When Catharina Elisabeth and Anton married, Anton took on the Heckenkemper name and was thereafter recorded in church records (children’s baptisms, deaths, etc.) as “Zehliger gt. (named) Heckenkamper.” When Catharina Elisabeth died May 17, 1814 of TB at the age of 25, Anton was left with two small children:
1. Maria Catharina who was born April 23, 1811
2. Maria Elisabeth who was born September 2, 1813.
After Catharina Elisabeth’s death May 17, 1814, Heinrich Anton, Widower, 36, farmer from Kirchspeil, Prussia, married (2) Clara Elisabetha Rose, Single 38, on July 20, 1814. Clara Elizabetha was born in Enniger, Westphalia, Prussia, Germany on December 27, 1775 and died February 18, 1848 in Keirlinghause, Prussia at the age of 74. Anton retained the “named Heckenkamper” status.
Heinrich Anton and Elisabeth had two children neither of whom were of Heckenkamper blood but retained the Heckenkamper name:
1. Johann Herman, born December 5, 1815 (our Herman, further referred to as Herman).
2. Anton Wilhelm born October 30, 1820 and died before 1848.
Herman was born to Anton and Clara Elisabeth being no actual blood relation to the original Heckenkemper family. However he was born and raised on the Heckenkamper farm in Kirchspeil and when he emigrated from Germany in 1846, he is listed on the ships register as Hermann Huckenkamper, and after he entered the United States at age 30 he went by Heckenkemper on all his legal documents the rest of his life.
When Clara Elisabeth Rose died she was survived by Anton who was 69 years old and her son Johann Herman (our Herman) who was 33 years of age and apparently already in the United States.
According to a document from “New Orleans 1820 – 1850 Passenger and Immigration List”, Hermann Huckenkamper is shown arriving in New Orleans January 6, 1846 at the age of 30. It shows his port of departure as Bremerhaven, which is due north of Stromberg. The Point of Origin was shown as Germany and it shows the ship name as “Damariscotta” and the Captain was William F. Howes.
Herman probably traveled from Oelde to Bremen (about 200 miles) by horseback or in a horse drawn carriage. In Bremen he would have boarded a small sailing vessel that would take him about 40 miles upriver to Bremerhaven. This trip to the would have taken them about 2 days and once there, he would go to the old harbor to board a large ocean crossing sailing ship to commence his trip to America which would have taken somewhere between one and two months.
Bremen is closely associated with its port city, BREMERHAVEN. The vast majority of German migrants left Germany from Bremen or Hamburg
When he arrived in New Orleans, he probably took a river steamer up the Mississippi to St. Claire County, IL.
According to the registry of death in St. Louis, MO, Herman died March 10, 1875 in St Louis Hospital, St. Louis, MO, at the age of 60, of Cancer of the Esophagus. He was buried by Monahan & Rogers Funeral Home, 913 N. 7th Street, St. Louis, MO, (Established 1874). The death certificate shows burial at Hull Station (Aviston) Cemetery, IL, but his tombstone has been found in St. Damien’s Catholic Cemetery in Damiensville, IL, Looking Glass Township, Clinton Co., IL a few miles away.
The following information from the Church registration books in Germany:
Diocese Enniger St. Mauritius, KB 1, Bl. (page) 77a:
Herman’s Mother - Clara Elisabetha was baptized on December 27, 1775. Her parents were Johan Henrich Rose and Maria Gertrud Hoppe. Her Godparents were Clara Elisabetha Hoppe and Jost Henrich Schlüter
Diocese Enniger St. Mauritius, KB 1, Bl. (page) 81:
Herman’s Father = Henricus Antonius was born on December 19, 1779 and baptized on December 21, 1779. His parents were Joan. Henricus Sehliger and Maria Elis. Thoman. His Godparents were Henr. Anton Thorman and Anna Angela Raue dicta (=called) Sehliger
Diocese Oelde St. Johannes d. T., KB 9, Page 1. Nr. 9/1810:
Herman’s Father and step-mother - Marriage on 7/11/1810: Henr. Anton Zehliger b. 12/12/1779 in Enniger, (Parents: John Heinr. Seliger u. Anna Alis. Thormann) and Cath. Elisabeth Heckenkemper, 21 years old, b. 12/13/1789 in Oelde, (Parents: Joh. Bernard Heckenkemper and Brigitta Hackenkamp) Witnesses: John Henr. Leibzüchter and Peter Kohlstedde
Diocese Oelde St. Johannes d. T., KB 9, Page 26. Nr. 48/1814:
Herman’s step Mother - Catharina Heckenkümper, wife of Anton Seliger (2nd wife Klara Elis. Rose) who was yard heiress of farm (Kötterin) in Kirchspiel died May 17, 1814 and was buried May 19, 1814. She was 25 years of age and died of TB and was survived by Anton and two minor children.
Diocese Oelde St. Johannes d. T., KB 9, Page 8. Nr. 12/1814:
Herman’s Father and Mother - Wedding on 7/20/1814 Henr. Anton Seliger, called Heckenkämper, Kötter (farm) and Schneider (tailor) in Kirchspiel, Widower, 36 years, (born) 12/19/1779 in Enniger (Seliger had married into the Heckenkemper family) and Clara Elisabbetha Rose, Single, 38 years, (born) 12/27/1775 in Enniger. Her parents were Tagl. Joh. Heinr. Rose and. Maria Gertr. Hoppe). Witnesses were Joan. Henr. Sehliger and Joan. Her. Rose
Diocese Oelde St. Johannes d. T., KB 8, Page 56. Nr. 77/1815:
Johan Hermann was born December 5, 1815 and Baptised on December 6, 1815. His parents were Henrich Anton Selge, called Heckenkämper and Elis. Rose. They resided in Kirchspiel. His Godparents were Joan Hermann Selige and Clara Hoppe
Diocese Oelde St. Johannes d. T., KB 13 Page 122. Nr. 8/1848:
Herman’s Mother - Elisabeth Rose, wife of Anton Heckenkämper died of old age at the age of 74 on February 18, 1848 and was buried on February 21, 1848. She resided in Keitlinghause. Her husband Anton and a grown son survived her.
Diocese Oelde St. Johannes d. T., KB 13, Page 196. Nr. 5/1858:
Herman’s Father - Anton Selige called Heckenkämper, Widower of Elisabeth Rose, died January 14, 1858 of old age at the age of 86 on his farm in Keitlinghause, and was buried on January 18, 1858. Two grown children survived him.
Direct Descendants of Johannes Henrich Sehliger
1 Johannes Henrich Sehliger b: Abt. 1740 d: March 1802 Age at first Marriage: 38 est. Age at birth of first child: 39 est. Age at birth of last child: 39 est.
+Mary Elisabetha Thorman b: August 16, 1744 in Enniger, Westphalia, Prussia d: December 06, 1826 in Enniger, Westphalia, Prussia m: January 1778 in Enniger, Westphalia, Prussia Age at first Marriage: 33 est. Age at birth of first child: 35 Age at birth of last child: 35
2 Heinrich Anton Zehliger b: December 19, 1779 in Ennigar, Westphalia, Prussia d: October 14, 1858 in Keitlinghause, West., Prussia Age at first Marriage: 30 Age at birth of first child: 31 Age at birth of last child: 40
+Clara Elisabetha Rose b: December 27, 1775 in Ennigar, Westphalia, Prussia d: February 18, 1848 in Keitlinghause, West., Prussia m: July 20, 1814 in Oelde, Westphalia, Prussia Age at first Marriage: 38 Age at birth of first child: 39 Age at birth of last child: 44
3 Hermann Heckenkemper b: December 05, 1815 in Oelde, Westphalia, Prussia d: March 10, 1875 in St. Louis Hospital, St. Louis, MO Age at first Marriage: 30 Age at birth of first child: 33 est. Age at birth of last child: 51 Burial: St. Damians Cemetery, Damiansville, IL
+Mary Anne (Dinguerette) Dingwerth b: 1826 in Versmold, Germany d: July 24, 1852 in Germantown, IL m: Abt. 1847 Age at first Marriage: 21 est. Age at birth of first child: 22 est. Age at birth of last child: 25 est. Burial: St. Boniface Cemetery, Germantown, IL
4 Joseph Heckenkemper b: 1848 in Looking Glass TWP, IL d: October 03, 1928 in Muskogee, OK Age at first Marriage: 22 est. Age at birth of first child: 23 est. Age at birth of last child: 50 est. Burial: Greenhill Cemetery, Muskogee, OK
+Anna Wolters b: September 19, 1852 in Damiensville, IL d: May 25, 1926 in Muskogee, OK m: February 22, 1870 in Clinton Co., IL Age at first Marriage: 17 Age at birth of first child: 18 Age at birth of last child: 45 Burial: May 29, 1926 Greenhill Cemetery, Muskogee, OK
5 William John Heckenkemper b: January 01, 1887 in Damiensville, IL d: May 18, 1969 in Tulsa, OK Age at first Marriage: 41 Age at birth of first child: 42 Age at birth of last child: 46 Burial: May 20, 1969 Calvary Cemetery, Tulsa, OK
+Gertrude Ann Harrison b: September 04, 1900 at 10 Water Street, Princeton, IN
d: December 13, 1989 in Tulsa, OK m: November 12, 1928 in Muskogee, OK Age at first Marriage: 28 Age at birth of first child: 29 Age at birth of last child: 32 Burial: December 15, 1989 Calvary Cemetery, Tulsa, OK
Immigrants of the 1850's would have sailed on a "bark", a three-masted vessel with foremast and mainmast square rigged and the third mast fore and aft rigged.
Herman came to America in 1846 and landed in New Orleans. He traveled up the Mississippi River and settled in St Clair County, IL.
The distance between Enniger, Westphalia, Prussia where Anton and Elizabeth were born and Oelde where Herman was born is about 12 miles.
The distance from Enniger to Keitlinghause where Anton and Elizabeth died is about 36 miles.
The distance from Oelde where Herman was raised to Bremerhaven where Herman departed for America is about 200 miles.
Herman arrived on in New Orleans in 1846. History books say the traditional music played throughout the 19th century at the ports of Bremen and Hamburg for passenger ships departing for foreign posts was the tune “Mussi-Denn”, written in 1824 by Heinrich Wagner. These strains were probably the last sounds heard by Herman as he left on the “Damanscotta” for America.
ARRIVAL AND LIFE IN THE NEW WORLD
In 1833 times weren't too good for small farmers around Glandorf. which is close to the city of Osnabrueck in the western part of Germany. Families had grown so much that starvation was a daily guest in the homes. Rumors told about a new country in the west across the big ocean - AMERICA.
Many families had left already. The Harwerth-family considered emigration as a possibility of survival. In the summer of 1833 the following persons of the Harwerth family had made up their mind and were ready to leave their home and the rest of the family forever:
On November 07, 1833 the ship Virginia got to port in Baltimore, MD. On board there was a small group of people coming from the village of Glandorf, They had left their little farm to begin a new life in America, hoping that this country would provide them with better conditions for making a living. After arrival at the port they quickly moved on westward towards today’s state of Illinois and helped settle Mud Creek, later to be known as St. Libory, IL.
Johann Wilhelm Harwerth, 56y.born February 09.1777, died during the journey. Father of 9 children with his wife, Anna Catharina Heuger and two of their children: William,(Johann Wilhelm) born in 1814 in Glandorf and Catharina Elisabeth, born October 31.1809.
Bernhard Dingwerth from their home community was with them and married Catharina Elisabeth Harwerth. William Harwerth and Bernhard Dingwerth were delegated to petition Bishop Joseph Rosati of St. Louis for a priest to serve the St. Libory Settlement. Together they held their first mass in William Harwerth's log cabin. The table they were sitting at is still in the possession of the church. At this occasion the parishioners elected to build a log church on ground donated by Bernhard Dingwerth. W. Harwerth, D. Harwerth, W. Kracht, G. Bertke, and G. Terveer helped to build the log church which was finished on May 05. 1839.
Johann & Helana Maria Dingwerth and their daughter, Mary Anne, age seven, were part of this immigration to AMERICA in 1833.
March 5, 1842 – Ann Mary Dinguerette married Harman Nordhaus in St. Boniface Catholic Church in Germantown, IL.
According to the marriage license in 1842, Ann Mary Dinguerette (she is referred to in various licenses, etc. as Ann Mary, Mary Anne, Mary Jane, etc.) married Harman Nordhaus (Nothaus) in Clinton Co., IL.
Johann & Helana Maria Dingwerth were witnesses at her wedding.
Clinton County Illinois Marriages BOOK A 1825-1848
GROOM BRIDE CLERGY DATE
DINGUERETTE, Ann Mary
Fortman, John Henry, M.G.
5 Mar 1842
The Witness was Diderich Harworth.
Mary Anne was born in Versmold, Germany in 1826 to Johann & Helana Maria Dingwerth.
Looking at Mary Ann’s name on this marriage license looks like DINGUERETTE was her maiden name and changed to Dingwerth when the family came to America. They arrived in 1833 but Mary Ann might not have officially changed her name before she got married in 1842 at age 16.
St. Boniface Catholic Church Baptisms, Germantown, Germantown Township, Clinton County, IL.
Mary Anna and Herman Nordhaus had a daughter Maria Theresia in 1843 and a son Johann in 1845 who
both died before one month of age.
NORDHAUS, Maria Theresia
5 Jan 1843
15 Jan 1843
DINGWERTH, Maria Anna
6 May 1845
10 May 1845
DINGWERTH, Maria Anna
Dingwerth, Johann Ernst
Harman (Herman) Nordhaus died January 31, 1846 at 46 y, and is buried at St. Boniface Catholic
Cemetery, Germantown, Clinton Co., IL. .
January 6, 1846 - Herman Heckenkemper arrived in St. Clair Co., IL.
April 22, 1846 - Mrs. Mary Anne (Dingwerth) Nothaus married Herman Heckenkemper in St Claire Co., IL.
J. H. Fortmann, the Catholic Priest at St. Pancratius Parish in Fayetteville, IL from 1846 – 1847 married them.
This is the same Priest who married Mary Anne and Harman Nordhaus in 1842.
Illinois Statewide Marriage Index 1763 – 1900
GROOM BRIDE COUNTY DATE VOL/PAGE LIC
HECKENKEIMPER, HERMANN NOTHAUS, MRS. MARY JANE DINGWERTH ST. CLAIR 04/22/1846 0001668
July 24, 1852 - Mary Anne died of Cholera (some information says she died from childbirth) during the Cholera epidemic in Germantown, IL, leaving Herman with two small sons, Joseph, 3 and Bernard, an infant, born October 1, 1851. She is buried in St. Boniface Cemetery, Germantown, IL at the Catholic Church in Germantown.
Children of HERMAN and MARY ANNE DINGWERTH are:
1. JOSEPH was born in 1848 in Looking Glass Township, IL and died in 1928, Muskogee, OK at the age of 80. He married Anna WOLTERS on February 22, 1870 in Clinton Co., IL. She was born September 19. 1852 in Damiensville, IL and died May 25, 1926 in Muskogee, OK at the age of 73.
2. BERNARD (Ben) J. was born October 31, 1851, in Clinton Co., IL Lookingglass Township and died in 1921 in Altamont, IL. Bernard was a farmer. He died of Influenza. He is buried in Effingham County, IL, and is buried in St. Clair Cemetery, Altamont, IL. - Sec 1, Row 7, Sec. 2, Row 2. Ben married FRANCESCA (KOSTER) KOESTER on February 21, 1876. She was born March 22, 1850 and died. In 1910.
Bernard is on record as one of the pioneer families and builders of the first Catholic Church at Altamont: Laurance Carr, John Swaters, Patrick Doran, J. F. Quatman, Bernard Keekenkemper, Mathais Faber, Nick Weider, Mrs. Mary Shab, Charles Vogel, Chris. Seibert, William Samuels, Mathias Johanns, Michael Zacha, Henry Muller, Herman Heimann, Franz Joseph Vogel, Mary Ann Drysdale, B. B. Mager, and Issac L. Dial.
The Cholera Epidemic General Winfield SCOTT came to Illinois in 1832 with a force of one thousand regulars to take from the faltering hands of the state militia the task of winning the Black Hawk War and concluding a peace. Part of his force was stricken with cholera when they arrived in Chicago. Others were stricken when they arrived in Rock Island where peace negotiations were then in progress.
The disease spread throughout the countryside, carried by roving Indians and army stragglers. Because of a devastating outbreak at Rock Island, negotiations were moved to Jefferson Barracks at St. Louis. From there, the cholera spread to Southern Illinois and started the terrible cholera epidemic years that plagued Southern Illinois from 1832 onward.
Newspapers of that time tell the most amazing stories. People died like flies, both in the cities, and in the rural areas. One story tells that in Belleville, about 30 miles away, the death toll was 10 per day. St. Louis, about 40 miles away, had 601 deaths in a single week. An entire farm family of 10 was wiped out overnight in Lebanon, about 20 miles away. Although Germantown, Breese and Carlyle were the three Clinton County towns with the most staggering death tolls, all areas of the County suffered. The epidemic was called the “Black Plague” and raced through the whole country like an uncontrolled prairie fire. During the day, a man would apparently be in robust health; by night he was burning up with fever; by dawn he had died a miserable death. No one recovered. Doctors were scarce, and what few there were in the area knew nothing about the disease or how to stop the epidemic.
People grew panic-stricken. Village streets were sprayed with lime. Fires of coal, tar and sulphus were kept burning at street corners. Citizens were told to use chloride of lime, boiling vinegar, tar and burning coffee in their homes as preventatives. Of course nothing worked. The dead were carried to cemeteries and buried at night. It was a time of great suffering and overpowering anxiety. A few years earlier, the same disease had swept over Europe and ravaged whole populations and killed millions of people.
Cholera is an acute infection of the intestine, resulting in severe watery diarrhea and often accompanied by vomiting, which results in dehydration of the body often within a few hours. In 1886, doctors discovered that cholera is caused by contaminated water or food, especially when involved with human waste, or by coming into contact with an infected person. This discovery basically led to an end of the cholera epidemics throughout the world.
Herman came to this country in 1846, before the democratic revolution of 1848 in Germany. The major causes of German migration were political, economic, religious, and literary factors. Although conditions in the German states were not as bad as in Ireland, crop failures, inheritance laws, high rents, high prices, and the effects of the industrial revolution led to widespread poverty and suffering. Relatives and friends who emigrated first would write back and encourage others to follow. This led to "chain migrations" and group settlements. Fairly well-to-do farmers who saw a bleak future, poor ones with no future, paupers whom the authorities often paid to leave, revolutionaries after 1848, and many artisans, professionals, and some adventurers made up the spectrum of the 1840s and 1850s.
Discontent in the German states in the 1840’s led to uprisings, but they failed from the lack of support. Among the revolutionists who fled to America were lawyers, physicians, teachers and college students. Many revolutionists came west and settled in Illinois.
That revolution brought huge numbers of Germans to the USA. Many Germans in that time period entered the US through the port of New Orleans, traveling from there up the Mississippi to St. Louis, and from there to their destination, which could have been Southeast Missouri and Illinois which was advertised in Germany as being similar to their home. There were also some German Jesuit Missionaries in these areas at that time. Economic failures in agriculture and manufacturing led to widespread poverty in several German states. Hundreds of thousands of German farmers, tradesmen, manufacturers and skilled laborers immigrated to America to begin a new life. Guidebooks written by Germans on opportunities in America were widely read in the German states, and “letters home” gave glowing accounts of life in America.
Herman’s first son Joseph (the grandfather of the writer of this family history) was born in
Looking Glass Township, IL in 1848.
German and American emigrant companies were formed to aid Germans in migrating to America. The German steamship companies provided low traveling rates. Upon landing in America, many emigrant guidebooks were available to aid the German immigrants. Thousands of German immigrants came to Illinois, and German aid societies were established to help the settlers adjust to a new life.
Many immigrants settled in Southwestern Illinois. Thousands settled along the Mississippi and Illinois Rivers. Others settled in Effingham County. They settled in Illinois for several reasons. The religious and social life was important in the settlement of Illinois. The majority of German immigrants were Protestant; a large group was Roman Catholic. The German element was a major factor in the advancement of culture in many communities.
Most of the German immigrants were farmers. They owned hundreds of thousands of acres of the best farmlands in Illinois, and they helped make Illinois the greatest farm producer in the period. There were more German immigrants employed in the various occupations than any other foreign-born element in Illinois.
Before 1850 the majority of the settlers voted for the Democratic Party. Between 1850 and 1860 many political events occurred which resulted in the German element switching its allegiance to the new Republican Party. Abraham Lincoln and the Republican Party would have been defeated in 1860 without the German vote.
On November 23, 1853, after Mary Anne’s death of Cholera in 1852, Herman married (2) ANNA MARIE NEISENMEYER in St. Boniface Church, Germantown, IL.
Illinois Statewide Marriage Index 1763 – 1900
GROOM BRIDE COUNTY DATE VOL/PAGE LIC
HECKENKAMPER, HERMAN NEISENMEIER, ANNA MARIE CLINTON 11/23/1853 1 /46 8
Anna Marie was born September 7, 1825 in Westphalia, Germany, known in Germany as “Westfalen”. Westfalen is a historic district in northwestern Germany. She died April 24, 1882 in Germantown, IL and is buried near Herman in St. Damian’s Catholic Cemetery in Damiansville, Looking Glass Township, IL.
Anna Marie had a sister Josephine who was born December 26, 1821 in Westphalia, Germany and died September 8, 1894 in St. Elizabeth, Miller Co., MO. She married to Joseph Boeckmann about 1845 in Germany. They also settled in Illinois. Their children were: Hermann , Franz H. "Frank", Joseph, II, Josephine, and Maggy.
The Heckenkemper homestead was on Albers, IL to New Baden - Hiway 61 - Second Mile Road - N. side of road.
Oral family history quotes the following information about Herman on his immigration to America.
Rev. G. H. Netemeyer, Herman’s Grandson, submitted the following quoted anecdotes:
"Herman Heckenkemper was a school teacher in Coesfeld, Germany. When he came to this country he came to New Orleans. He carried money in a money belt. Some shady characters learned about this. They intended to take it from him (roll him) on landing at New Orleans. He learned about this plan so he jumped ship before landing and swam to shore, hiding under the piers until dark. When he emerged from hiding, he took a boat to St. Louis by way of the Mississippi River. He came to Illinois, taking up farming about a mile west of Albers.”
"During the Civil War, Herman had a very good wheat crop. The U.S. Government sent agents to buy his wheat. He refused to sell it to them because the price was too low; besides the money value was practically nil. These agents told him that if he did not sell it to the Government, the Government would take it.”
"He made a deal with these agents that he would sell his wheat to the Government, if he could get his money whenever he wanted it. (He did not want the devalued money.) He then watched the money market very closely so that he called for his money the day before the money was revalued to its former value. In this way, he had all the money at its devalued price, and the next day it had the value that it had originally.”
“The first two paragraphs, were told to me by my mother Herman's daughter Elizabeth Heckenkemper Netemeyer. Ben Heckenkemper, Grandson of Herman and son of Ben Heckenkemper, Sr. told the last two paragraphs to me.”
Rev. G. H. Netemeyer
A number of the families that were familiar in the Clinton Co. area and intermarried with the Heckenkemper’s that also arrived in New Orleans are:
v Johan Herman Santel and family arrived Jan 27, 1840 on the ship “Louise Fredericke”.
v Wehkamp Family arrived June 5, 1840 on the ship “Johann George”.
v Wolters Family arrived December 20, 1845 on the ship “Clinton”.
v Joseph Boeckmann, his wife Josephine (born Neisenmeyer) arrived in 1851 on the German ship “Oldenburg”.
v Henry (or Herman) Kosters, his wife Gertrud (born Sommer), son Henry age 2, and 2 others who it is assumed were the father and sister of the elder Henry, all were traveling to St. Charles, Missouri, where they arrived in April 1837, after making their way up the Mississippi River by steamboat. Ship Olbers Bremen to New Orleans -- December 8, 1836 DISTRICT OF MISSISSIPPI -- PORT OF NEW ORLEANS.
It is not known exactly how these people were entwined with the Heckenkemper families, but they mostly knew each other and were friends and members of the same church and social groups and began to intermarry.
Herman was a farmer in Germany and a farmer in Illinois. He acquired property by July 11, 1846, and is shown in the 1860 Ill Census Pg. 787 Clinton Co, IL.
1840 Between the years of 1840 and 1845 local Protestants built a small frame church in "old" Aviston.
1854 In the 1850s the O and M Railroad was built north of "old" Aviston traveling through Clinton County. The citizens of "old" Aviston re-settled in Hull near the railroad.
1860 Hull (Aviston) was laid out into lots by the J.W. Dugger and Co. near the O & M Railroad. Aviston is in Sugar Creek Township. The post office established July 14, 1836 and includes Aviston Station, Hecker Station, and Hull Station. It was incorporated as a village February 10, 1874. The population in 1895 was 381 and in 1960 was 717. Aviston was named in honor of John AVIS, a gunsmith who was the first business to locate there, the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad.
Herman purchased land 8-19-1851 and 1-31-1852 in Looking Glass Township, Clinton, Co., IL
Germans of Clinton County exceeded 77 per cent of the foreign population. The last major German settlement made in Illinois during this period was in Effingham County. The German population totaled 2,122 persons, English 194, Irish 228, and all others totaled 251 persons.
Effingham County was known as a “German Catholic County”. They built a Catholic church in 1853 and a Catholic school in 1854. Cities, towns and townships were given German names in southwestern Illinois. Germans from the Hanover area in Germany settled Germantown, New Baden, Bachne, and Breese.
Herman’s Gravestone in Damiensville, IL is well worn but legible in St. Damian’s Catholic Cemetery in Damiansville, Clinton County, Ill. He was born Dec-6-1815 and died March-10-1875. He is buried in the back of the old part of the cemetery. The head stone is written in German.
Anna Marie (Mary) Heckenkemper, Herman’s wife was named Administratrix of his estate, but declined and
Otto Nettemeier was then named Administrator.
The sale of Herman’s estate on March 6, 1878 was published in the Effingham Democrat for 6 weeks.
IN COUNTY COURT, JANUARY TERM 1878
STATE OF ILLINOIS CLINTON COUNTY
Otto Nettemeier, Administrator de bonas non of the estate of Herman Heckenkemper, deceased, vs. Mary Heckenkemper, the widow, and Joseph Heckenkemper, Bernard Heckenkemper, Henry He4ckenkemper, Elizabeth Heckenkemper, Mary Heckenkemper, Frank Heckenkemper, Jacobena Heckenkemper, heirs-at-law of Herman Heckenkemper, late of the County of Clinton, and State of Illinois, deceased. Petition to sell land to pay debts and to assign dower.
By virtue of a decretal order, made and entered at the January term of the Clinton County County Court, A.D. 1878, on the Probate side thereof. I, Otto Nettemeier, administrator of the estate of Herman Heckenkemper; deceased, will on
WEDNESDAY, MARCH 6, 1878,
sell at Public Auction, between the hours of ten o’clock in the forenoon and five o’clock in the afternoon of said day, on the premises hereinafter described, the following described Real Estate, viz; the West half of the Southeast quarter of Section Twenty eight (28) in Township [Eight (8) North Range Four East of the 3rd Principal Meridian, with the exception of fifty feet from the center of the track for the right of way for the Springfield & Southeastern Railway Co., on the west side there of, situated in the County of Effingham and State of Illinois.
TERMS OF SALE; - Ten per cent. Of the purchase money to be paid on the day of sale, the remainder on a credit of Six and Twelve months, the purchaser or purchasers to give notes with approved personal security, and a mortgage on the premises sold, to secure the deferred payments. Otto Nettemeier Administrator of the estate of Herman Heckenkemper deceased.
D. Kingsbury, Carlysle, Ills., Att’y. Dated Jan. 31, 1878
Children of HERMAN HECKENKEMPER and ANNA NEISENMEYER are:
1. HENRY HERMAN (Hy) was born November 07, 1853 in Damiansville, IL and died January 07, 1937 in Aviston, IL. Henry married THERESA BRINKMAN on November 07, 1876 in Clinton Co., IL. She was born November 05, 1856 in Illinois and died Abt. 1920. Henry was a farmer. He was buried in Looking Glass Township, Clinton Co, IL
2. ELIZABETH was born April 10, 1859, Germantown, IL and died June 20, 1939 in Albers, IL – She is buried in St.Bernard's Cemetery. She married Gerhard Lambert Netemeyer November 23, 1880 in St.Damian's Church, Damiansville, IL. He was born December 22, 1856 and died July 08, 1940 in Albers, IL. The Netemeyer family came from Gutustow, Prussia on the Ship Ulysses in 1836.
3. MARY was born November 12, 1860 in Germantown, IL and died September 16, 1904 in Germantown, IL. She married Bernard Herman Linneman on April 29, 1884 in Clinton Co., IL. He was born December 27, 1856 and died April 20, 1940 in Germantown, IL.
4. FRANK was born January 22, 1863 in Damiansville, IL and died September 05, 1943 in Belleville, IL Frank died in St. Elizabeth's Hospital. He married Mary Kalmer on November 17, 1897 at St. Damian's Church, Damiansville, IL. She was born May 10, 1867 and died December 17, 1955 in Albers, IL.
5. JACOBINA was born December 23, 1866 in Damiansville, IL and died February 21, 1945 in Damiansville, IL She married Bernard Kalmer who was born December 13, 1860 and died March 31, 1932 in Damiansville, IL.
TIMELINE OF HERMAN HECKENKEMPER
1815 Herman was born in Germany
1824 Mary Anne Dingwerth was born in Germany
1825 Mary Jane Nothaus was born.
1825 Anna Marie Neisenmeyer was born in Germany
1832 Cholera Epidemic, Ongoing
1837 First Settlement, Looking Glass, IL
1838 New Baden Founded, New Baden
1841 Church & School built, Germantown, IL
1846 Ann Mary Dinguerette Dingwerth married Harman Nordhaus
1846 Harman Nordhaus died and is buried in Germantown, IL.
1846 Herman arrived in New Orleans aboard “Ship Damariscotta” from Bremerhaven, Prussia
1846 Herman married Mary Anne (Dinguerette, Nordhaus) Dingwerth in Clinton Co., IL
1848 Son Joseph was born in Looking Glass, IL
1850 Herman 34 shown in Ill Census,
1851 Mary Anne Dingwerth Died in Germantown, IL
1851 Son Bernard was born in Clinton Co
1852 Herman married Anna Marie Neisenmeyer in Germantown, IL
1853 Son Henry was born in Damiensville, IL
1859 Daughter Elizabeth was born in Germantown, IL
1860 Herman 44 shown in Ill Census,
1860 Daughter Mary was born in Germantown, IL
1861 St Damien's Church & Schoolhouse built in Damiensville, IL
1863 Son Frank was born in Damiensville, IL
1866 Dau Jacobina was born in Damiensville, IL
1870 Herman 54, shown in Ill Census,
1875 Herman, Died, St. Louis, MO
1880 Henry 27 (Herman's son (Hy) shown in Ill Census,
1881 Anna Marie Neisenmeyer Died,
1891 Albers Founded
1892 Herman had 40 acres in Sec 15, Clinton Co
1892 Herman had 160 acres in Sec 10, Clinton Co
1895 Louisville, Evansville, and St. Louis Railroad arrived in Germantown, IL
1899 Air Line Railroad arrived in Damiensville, IL
St Bernard’s Church, Albers, IL
St. Bernard’s Church in Albers, IL. was built in 1910. In the upper left corner of the Church above the altar, the stained glass
window is identified as St. Bernard and under that is the name of the donor, Herman Heckenkemper.
The first settlers in the vicinity of the present town of Albers came from Hanover and Westphalia, Germany, in the early 1840’s and attended to their religious duties at Germantown. When later churches were built at Damiansville and Aviston, those considerably nearer to these places attended divine service there
When in the year 1889 a railroad, known as the Air Line, was built, the Company for the convenience of the people of Damiansville, made a stopping-place on the main road from Damiansville, and named it Damiansville Station. A few years later, the name of the Station was changed to Albers Station, the land for the switches and depot having been donated by F. H. ALBERS.
For a number of years there were only five houses at the "Station." By 1908 there were 12 families residing close by. It being rather inconvenient for those families to attend church at Damiansville, which is 2 ½ miles distant, a new congregation as formed, and July 8, 1908, the Rev. Bernard PETERS was appointed the first pastor.
Immediately after his appointment, the Rev. Pastor arranged to build a suitable church. This building is of solid pressed brick, 85 ft. long and 48 ft. wide and has a seating capacity of 420.
JOSEPH HECKENKEMPER IS THE SON WE WILL FOLLOW
JOSEPH HECKENKEMPER, son of Herman and Mary Anne DINGWERTH, was born in1848 in Looking Glass Township, IL, and died in 1928 in Muskogee, OK at the age of 80. He married ANNA WOLTERS February 22, 1870 in Clinton County, IL. She was born September 19, 1852 in Damiensville, IL, and died May 25, 1926 in Muskogee, OK. Anna died suddenly at 74 of Spasmodic Asthma, she was sick only about one hour. They are both buried in Greenhill Cemetery, Muskogee, Space 1 & 2, Lot 25, Block 134. Anna was the daughter of JOHN ALBERT WOLTERS and ANNA G. WEHKAMP.
Anna WOLTERS had four brothers and one sister:
1. Henry WOLTERS born about 1850
2. Lucas WOLTERS born about 1851.
3. Gerhard WOLTERS born about 1854.
4. Bernhard WOLTERS was born October 18, 1855 and died March 25, 1933 in Breese, Clinton Co., IL. He married Cath. WUBBELS on November 23, 1880 in Clinton Co., IL. She was born about 1855.
5. Elizabeth WOLTERS was born September 12, 1857 in Clinton Co., IL. She married John Herman SANTEL, Jr. on April 29, 1879 in Clinton Co., IL. He was the son of Johannes Hermannus SANTEL and Maria Adeleid WESTER. He was born in August 1859.
ILLINOIS CENSUS CLINTON CO., IL shows
1870 Henry 55, Mary 45, Bernard 20, Henry 16, Elizabeth 11, Mary 9, Frank 6, Jacobina 3
Joseph is not listed in his father Herman’s home for the Census. He was 22 at this time.
1880 Joseph 29, farming, Anna 24, Margareth 9, John 7, Mary 5, Frederick 1 mo.
1890 No Census available, but Theresa, Frank, William, Marie, Tony, Tillie and Lewis were all born in Lookinglass Township, IL
1900 Does not show Joseph and his family in Indian Territory (Muskogee) or Oklahoma Territory (Beckham County, Elk City). They were in process of moving and must have missed the census in all the places.
OKLAHOMA CENSUS PORTER TOWNSHIP, MUSKOGEE, OK
1910 Joseph 59, Anna 55, Quinnie 30, Frank J. 29, Theresa 27, William 22, Tony 17, Joe 3.
Frank J. 29 and Quinnie 30, were married by this time were living in their own home..
1920 Joseph 69, Anna 65, Theresa 37, William 32, Tony 27, Joe 13 (all lived at 1001 Columbus, Muskogee, OK)
1930 By this time Joseph and Anna had died, Theresa moved and married Andy Reddy in 1931 and Joe was 23 and out of the house and William and Gertrude lived at 1001 Columbus with William Joseph 1.
Joseph was a prosperous farmer in Illinois. It is said* that after their father Herman died in 1875, at the age of 60, Joseph and his brother Ben had a falling out over the disposition of Herman’s estate, and about 1900, Joseph and Anna moved to Montrose, Missouri and farmed there. Joseph’s half-sister Margaret and her husband John Muck were living in Montrose at that time.
*Information from Edgar Netemeyer (Florence Netemeyer’s brother ) at Netemeyer Family Reunion in
Albers, IL, May, 1999.
When Herman died in 1875, his wife Mary [Anna Marie NEISENMEYER] who was the stepmother of Joseph and Ben was administrator of Herman's estate. There were two parts of the property 200 acres each. Mary (Herman’s widow) got the 200 acres Virgil HECKENKEMPER is now living on and Herman’s son Ben bought the other half of the property (about 200 acres) at the sale of estate property for $1.250.00.
Joseph and Anna were living in Montrose, MO in 1903 when they were notified of the death of their son Fred in Nebraska. They had his body shipped to Montrose and he is buried there.
In the meantime, Joseph's son John had moved to Oklahoma and married Margaret GALLAGHER who lived in Elk City, Beckham Co., OK. Around 1900 John told his father that Margaret's father was planning to go into the mercantile business in the fast growing Elk City area of Oklahoma. He needed a partner. Joseph was in his fifty’s by this time and Mr. Gallagher needed some help with financing the mercantile business so Joseph decided to sell the farm and move the family to Elk City to go into partnership with Mr. Gallagher. He sold his farm for $10,000 which was a huge sum in those days.
The money was sent to Mr. Gallagher to purchase supplies to stock the store. When Joseph and Anna and their children arrived in Oklahoma and proceded to do business, the bills began to arrive unpaid. To their disappointment, Mr. Gallagher had not paid for the merchandise, Joseph was left with the unpaid bills, and the store did not succeed. (Mr. Gallagher ended up being a quite prosperous person in Tulsa and owned a number of properties. Naturally the family thought this is where Joseph's money went.)
After this financial disaster, Joseph and Anna, and their children, Theresa, William, Frank and Tony moved to Muskogee, OK. Joseph and Anna continued to be active citizens of Muskogee the rest of their lives. They were members of Assumption Catholic Church and are both buried in Greenhill Cemetery, Muskogee.
Joseph and Anna moved from Illinois to Montrose, MO, and were there in 1903 when their son Fred’s body was shipped back for burial. They then moved to Elk City and then to Muskogee, OK. It is not known when Joseph and Anna and the family moved to Muskogee, but by 1904 their son Frank, at the age of 20, had opened a shoe shop there and the family was back together again. They cannot be found in the 1900 census in either Indian Territory (Muskogee) or Oklahoma Territory (Beckham County, Elk City), but were in the 1910 Census of Muskogee, OK.
Children of JOSEPH HECKENKEMPER and ANNA WOLTERS are:
1. MARGARET was born March 29, 1871 in Damiensville, IL and died December 14, 1900 in Germantown, MO. She married JOHN BERNARD MUCK on January 22, 1894. John was born June 18, 1867 in Germantown, MO and died September 13, 1946 in Germantown, MO. His parents were Anton Muck (1833-1915) and Annie Schmedding (1840-1893). Margaret and John lived in Montrose, MO with their family on a farm. They are both buried In St. Ludger’s Cemetery, Germantown, MO. Their Children are Charles Anthony, Anna Marie, Lena and George.
2. JOHN was born January 01, 1873 in Damiensville, IL and died January 04, 1968 in Tulsa, OK. He married MARGUERITE GALLAGHER about 1900. She was born in about 1875. John and Marguerite lived Okmulgee. They had one daughter Erma who was born in 1898 and died about 1904 They were divorced soon after. After the death of his daughter and his divorce, John moved to California and worked in defense plants during World War II. John changed his name (not officially) to Heck in later years. After he retired, he returned to Tulsa, OK and traveled to all parts of the state buying and selling Oil leases. He had a room at the Trimble Hotel in downtown Tulsa (a retirement hotel) his last 10 years or more and died there in 1968. He is buried in Calvary Catholic Cemetery in Tulsa, OK.
3. MARY was born April 03, 1875 in Germantown, IL and died October 31, 1935 in Muskogee, OK. She married JAMES H. MCMANUS in Muskogee, OK. Their daughter MARY P. MCMANUS was born about 1916 in Muskogee. She died in 1921 at the age of 4 years and 11 months of Spinal Meningitis. James was born about 1873 and died April 4, 1927 in Muskogee, OK. James, Mary and their daughter are all buried in Greenhill Cemetery, Muskogee, OK.
4.ELIZABETH was born May 06, 1878 in Looking Glass Township, IL and died March 18, 1879. She died at 10 months and 9 days of Pneumonia.
5.FRED was born on December 25, 1879 in Looking Glass Township, Clinton Co, IL and died April 29, 1903 in Kimball, Nebraska in an accident. Fred left home at an early age. The family story was that Fred left home to work on a ranch in Nebraska. The family was notified that he was killed in a card game in a bunkhouse on a ranch in Kimball, Nebraska where he was working. His parents Joseph and Anna had moved to Montrose, ML to be near their daughter Margaret Muck and buried him in Montrose, MO near them at that time.
Published in Hoyt Sentinel 2 May 1903 Death Notice
Heckenkemper, Fred Kimball, Neb.
Fred is buried in St. Mary’s Cemetery aka: Montrose Catholic Cemetery T40, R28, S14 - Deepwater Township 1266 SW 700 Rd, Montrose, Henry Co, MO 645 known burials from 1869 to 1998 Landowner: St. Mary's Catholic Diocese
Directions: 3/4 miles north and 1/2 mile west of the St. Mary's Church, Montrose, MO.
6. MARIA THERESA was born April 10, 1881 in Looking Glass Township, Clinton Co, IL and died August 10, 1955 in Muskogee, OK of Axphiation at the age of 73. She married A. W. (Andy) REDDY July 28, 1931. He was born in 1882 and died on May 14, 1951 of Coronary Occlusion at the age of 83 in Muskogee, OK. They are both buried in Greenhill Cemetery, Muskogee, OK.
Theresa took care of her parents when the family moved to Muskogee after the failure of the family business in Elk City. William (who was only about 20 at the time) bought a home for his parents and Theresa and her son Joe (about 2 years old) lived there along with William and a younger brother Tony (about 12). William, with help from his sister Marie who lived in Miami, FL, supported the whole family.
Maria Theresa married Andy Reddy at the age of 49 after her son Joe was grown. Andy was 59 at that time. They lived in a small home in Muskogee across from the railroad tracks south of Spaulding Park. 210 Dorchester. Her husband Andy was a tinkerer and had a wonderful garage behind the house with everything hung on the walls - all kinds of interesting things. Theresa was famous for saying (when someone had brought her a chicken to cook) "Well a chicken always comes in handy". This was a family saying for years. They had a great old coal-burning stove with a coal bucket in the living room, a VICTROLA and a horsehair love seat - it was great!!
Theresa’s son Joseph Robert Heckenkemper was born July 26, 1905 in Muskogee and died December 26, 1963 in Tulsa, OK. He is buried in Ft Gibson National Cemetery, Muskogee County, OK. Joe married Irene Pearl Howard in Muskogee on November 28, 1937. They had one daughter, Mary Jo who was born in Muskogee in 1929.
7.FRANK J. was born August 07, 1884 in Looking Glass Township, Clinton Co, IL and died January 11, 1958 in Muskogee, OK at the age of 73. He married QUINNIE KELTON on December 20, 1909. Quinnie had been a resident of Muskogee since 1901. She was born February 11, 1880 in Berryville, AR and died in Muskogee, OK December 26, 1963 at the age of 83. Her obituary listed her as Mrs. Frank J. (Quinnie Wright) Heckenkemper. They are both buried in Memorial Park Cemetery, which is located west of Muskogee on Hi-way 64 on Taft Road.
Frank opened his shoe repair shop in Muskogee in 1904. He and Quinnie lived behind the shop in a partitioned off section. His shop ”Heck’s Electric Shoe Shop” was at 110 Callahan Street, in the block immediately east of the railroad overpass on Callahan.
Frank & Quinnie had a son Frank Jr. who was born in 1919 in Muskogee and died of Leukemia on April 11, 1963 in San Diego, CA. He married Mary Jane Canterbury who was born on August 06, 1920 in Muskogee and died October 29, 1980 in Denver, CO. They are both buried in Greenhill Cemetery in Muskogee.
8. WILLIAM JOHN (Father of the writer of this document) was born January 1, 1887 in Damiensville, IL and died May 18, 1969 in Tulsa, OK. He married GERTRUDE ANN HARRISON on November 12, 1928 in Muskogee, OK. She was born September 04, 1900 at 10 Water Street in Princeton, IN and died December 13, 1989 in Tulsa, OK. They are both buried in Calvary Cemetery, Tulsa, OK.
9. MARIE (WILHELMINA) was born May 10, 1889 in Damiensville, IL and died August 24, 1964 in Miami, FL. She married. (1) UNKNOWN SIMPSON who was born about 1889. She married (2) WALLACE MANN about 1935 in Miami, FL. He was born about 1864 and died about 1940 in Miami, FL.
Marie "Minnie" moved to Miami, Florida as a young woman. She was a beautician and met Wallace Mann when he came in to have a manicure. They were married. He and his brother Mose started Atlantic Furniture Company in Miami, FL.
When Wallace died about 1944, Marie ran the store until she died in 1964. Wallace was about 25 years older than Marie. They had no children. They were good friends of the Milton Hershey's of Pennsylvania (Hershey Bar Candy Company). Before Wallace died they were planning to build a house on the Sunset Islands (man made islands in Biscayne Bay, Miami, FL). They and the Hershey's were to be neighbors on the lots they had picked out on one of the Sunset Islands. They went to the horse and dog races with Milton and Catherine Hershey of “Hershey Chocolate”. I (Mary Louise Heckenkemper, the writer of this genealogy) spent 6 weeks the summer of 1944 (I was 13) with Aunt Marie and 7 weeks the summer of 1946 (I was 15). My mother (Gertrude Harrison Heckenkemper) came alone on the train to get me the summer of 1944. I flew home alone the summer of 1946. Aunt Marie, Anna Rhoden (William Joseph Heckenkemper's sister Margaret's daughter) and I went to Miami in 1944 on the train. We had a stateroom on the train. It slept three people. The trip took about 3 days. The summer of 1946, Aunt Marie, Anna Rhoden and few friends flew to Havana, Cuba on a Pan-Am water pontoon plane. Marie and Wallace are buried in Miami, FL.
10. ANTHONY "TONY" (Twin to Tillie who died as an infant) was born May 02, 1891 in Looking Glass Township, Clinton Co., IL and died February 12, 1966 in Muskogee, OK. He married NORA BELLE MILBURN SLAIGHT on January 7, 1930 in Muskogee, OK. She was born on January 07, 1885 in Otterville, MO and died May 17, 1971 in Muskogee. Tony worked for the KATY railroad as a Switchman and a Yardman in Muskogee. They are both buried in Greenhill Cemetery, Muskogee, OK.
11. TILLIE (a twin to Anthony) was born May 02, 1891 in Looking Glass Township, Clinton Co., IL and died in 1891 before she was a year old.
12. LOUIS was born July 28, 1898 in Looking Glass Township, Clinton Co., IL and died November 24, 1898 before he was a year old.
Illinois Statewide Marriage Index 1763 - 1900
GROOM BRIDE CNTY DATE VOL/PAGE LIC
HECKENKEMPER, JOS [LICENSES DATE] WALTERS, ANNA CLINTON 02/22/1870 2 /50 10
TIMELINE OF JOSEPH HECKENKEMPER AND ANNA WOLTERS
1848 Joseph was born in Looking Glass, IL
1852 Anna Wolters was born in Damiensville, IL
1870 Joseph married Anna Wolters in Clinton Co, IL
1870 Joseph not listed in Herman’s Home on Ill Census
1871 Daughter Margaret was born in Damiensville, IL
1873 Son John was born in IL
1875 Daughter Mary was born in Germantown, IL
1878 Daughter Elizabeth was born in Lookingglass, IL
1878 Daughter Elizabeth died in Lookingglass, IL
1879 Son Fred was born in Lookingglass, IL
1880 Joseph farming 29, Anna 24 listed in Ill Census
1881 Daughter Theresa was born in Lookingglass, IL
1884 Son Frank was born in Lookingglass, IL
1887 Son William John was born in Damiensville, IL
1889 Daughter Marie (Minnie) was born in Damiensville, IL
1891 Twins, Tony & Tillie was born in Lookingglass, IL
1891 Tillie died in Lookingglass, IL
1898 Son Louis was born in Lookingglass, IL Died as an infant
1900 Daughter Margaret died in Germantown, IL
1903 Moved to Montrose, MO
1903 Son Fred died in Kimball, Neb and buried in Montrose, MO
1904 Muskogee, OK
1910 Joseph 59, Anna 55, listed in Census, Muskogee, OK
1928 Joseph died in Muskogee, OK
1935 Daughter Mary died in Muskogee, OK
1955 Daughter Theresa died in Muskogee, OK
1958 Son Frank died in Muskogee, OK
1964 Daughter Marie (Minnie) died in Miami, FL
1966 Son Tony died in Muskogee, OK
1968 Son John died in Tulsa, OK
1969 Son William John died in Tulsa, OK
John Swaters (1838-1926) was a neighbor of Joseph and his family in Clinton County and Effingham County, IL. John Swaters moved to Montrose/Germantown, Henry County, MO in 1893. Since coming to Henry County in 1893 he made his first purchase of land in 1893 but he did not make his permanent home here until 1901. John Swaters was born in Holland, October 29, 1838, the son of John and Antoinette (DeHeer) Swaters, who came to America in 1848. The father of Mrs. Swaters, John DeHeer, died on the voyage. The Swaters family settled in Clinton County, Illinois, where the father died in 1853, and the mother died in 1873. John Swaters began life in humble circumstances in Clinton County, Illinois, and shortly after his marriage he removed to Effingham County, where he became owner of a farm of 320 acres, which he cultivated until his removal to Missouri. Land was constantly rising in value in Illinois and Mr. Swaters with characteristic shrewdness and by the exercise of good, sound business judgment based upon the idea that a man could not lose money by purchasing good farm lands, bought and sold farms in his vicinity and thus made a great deal of money. April 18, 1871, John Swaters and Elizabeth Wekamp were united in marriage. Mrs. Elizabeth Swaters is the daughter of J. B. Wekamp and was born in Hanover, Germany, in 1855, emigrating from her native land to America when fifteen years old. Her mother died in 1865.
Since Joseph and Anna were in Montrose by 1903 to bury their son Fred, they probably either led or followed the Swaters on the move. I remember visiting Joseph and Anna’s daughter Margaret and John Muck in Montrose as a small child in the 1930’s and John Swaters name was familiar to me from that time. They must have been good friends.
WILLIAM JOHN IS THE SON WE WILL FOLLOW
WILLIAM JOHN HECKENKEMPER, son of Joseph and Anna, was born. January 01, 1887 in Damiensville, IL and died May 18, 1969 in Tulsa, OK. He married GERTRUDE ANN HARRISON on November 12, 1928 in Muskogee, OK. She was born September 04, 1900, at 10 Water Street in Princeton, IN and died December 13, 1989 in Tulsa, OK.
William bought a house at 1001 Columbus in Muskogee, and he and his sister Marie (Miami, FL) supported their parents, and Theresa and her young son Joe after the family moved to Muskogee from Elk City. William’s younger brother Tony was still a teenager and also living at home. Theresa managed the home for them while William was working for Oklahoma Pipe Line Company in Muskogee.
He and Gertrude Harrison started dating and became engaged. They set their wedding date and when his Mother died suddenly at the age of 74 of Spasmodic Asthma, they delayed the wedding to help take care of his father who was 78 at that time. After a short time they set their wedding date again and when his Father died the following year at age 80, they were in a dilemma about their wedding, consulted their Priest who said don't wait, go ahead with your life and they did.
After the Father died, Theresa moved out of the house. Joe at this time was 25 and already out of the house as was Tony who was married and 37.
William and Gertrude were married November 12, 1928, and moved into William's house at 1001 Columbus. In November 1929 their first child, William was born. In November 1930 their second child Mary Louise (the author of this family history) was born. William was working for Interstate Oil and Gas Company. By June 1933, William had been transferred to Tulsa with Interstate and after the birth of their third child John in June 1933; Gertrude joined William in Tulsa at 1537 North Elwood. They lived there until 1968 when they moved to 1312 East 19th Street in Tulsa.
William retired from Interstate in Tulsa in 1951 after 40 years of service.
CHILDREN OF WILLIAM JOHN AND GERTRUDE:
WILLIAM JOSEPH was born November 7, 1929 in Muskogee, OK. He married Barbara Jean Bradley on February 2, 1952 in Tulsa, OK.
MARY LOUISE (the writer of this document) was born November 25, 1930 in Muskogee, OK. She married Ronald Joseph LeBoeuf on August 30, 1952 in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
JOHN ANTHONY was born on June 6, 1933 in Muskogee, OK. He married Bettie Jo Ferguson on April 11, 1953 in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
DIRK SOBBEKE gt. HECKENKAMPER was born in 1677 and died before January 1747/48.
Children of DIRK SOBBEKE GT. HECKENKAMPER are:
1. FRANZ WILHELM HECKENKAMPER was born March 01, 1718/19.
2. ANNA MARIA GERTRUDE HECKENKAMPER was born August 13, 1714. She married (1) CONRAD WALDPETER on July 11, 1745. He was born about 1714 in Oelde, Westphalia, Prussia and died after 1756. She married (2) JACOB REKER May 02, 1756. He was born about. 1714.
3. ANNA ELIZABETH HECKENKAMPER was born November 04, 1716.
4. JOANNES STEPHANUS HECKENKAMPER was born April 14, 1722.
FRANZ WILHELM gt. HECKENKAMPER was born March 01, 1718/19. He married ANNA CATHARINA BEERMAN in 1748 in Ostenfelde. She was born 1732 in Ostenfelde, Prussia and died in 1750.
Children of FRANZ HECKENKAMPER and ANNA BEERMAN are:
1. JOAN BERND gt. HECKENKAMPER was born January 13, 1749/50 and died April 22, 1814.
2. ANNA MARIE HECKENKAMPER, b. Abt. 1749.
JOAN (Latin abbrev. for Johannes) BERND gt. HECKKENKAMPER was born January 13, 1749/50 and died April 22, 1814. He married BRIGITTA HAKKENCAMP on November 30, 1776. She was born July 01, 1752 in Oelde, and was the daughter of STEPHEN HACKENKAMP and ELISABETH VAELMEYER. .
Children of JOAN HECKENKAMPER and BRIGITTA HACKENKAMP are:
1. CATHARINA ELISABETH HECKENKAMPER was born December 13, 1789 and died February 17, 1814. She married ANTON ZEHLIGER (SELIGER) gt. HECKENKEMPER July 11, 1810.
2. ANNA MARGARETHA HECKENKAMPER was born December 28, 1777. She married CHRISTOPH WINKELMANN, an angleman, on August 20, 1805. He was born about 1777 in Oelde, Westphalia, Prussia.
3. FRANZ WILHALM HECKENKAMPER was born December 29, 1782 and married ANNA MARIA ORTMEYER on February 10, 1808. She was born on November 15, 1778 in Menninghausen, Prussia. Franz was a tailor.
CATHARINA ELISABETH HECKENKAMPER (GGrandaughter of Dirk Sobbeke) was born December 13, 1789 on the farm in Kirchspiel, Prussia and died February 17, 1814 in Oelde, Westphalia, Prussia. On July 11, 1810 she married ANTON ZEHLIGER (SELIGER), making him ANTON ZEHLIGER (SELIGER) gt. HECKENKEMPER. He was born December 19, 1779 in Ennigar, Westphalia, Prussia, and died October 14, 1858. She was the “yard heiress”.
Children of CATHARINA HECKENKAMPER and ANTON HECKENKEMPER are:
1. MARIA CATHARINA HECKENKEMPER, b. April 23, 1811.
2. MARIA ELISABETH HECKENKEMPER was born February 09, 1813. She married JOSEPH KNOBEL SPIELBUSCH gt. HECKENKAMPER April 29, 1845. He was born September 29, 1811. They had five children.
None of the ancestors of Catharina Elisabeth are real Heckenkempers! Since they are all “gt” it looks as if they inherited the farm name through marriage.
After Catharina died in 1814 Anton married Clara Elisabeth Rose.
Some early history of Willingholzhausen, (village near Osnabruck) and early families.
In the years, around 1500, the farmers actually farmed for the government. All the money and all the crops had to be given to the government market and then were equally divided among the people. Then came freedom for the farmers and the economy grew.
During the time, 750-980 A.D., the farms in Willingholzhausen were divided among family members. About 80 farms were fully inherited. In some cases, the farms were divided among the children.
In the business books from the government market the following Willingholzhausen farms were mentioned from 1350-1532: (First name was family name and second name sometimes referred to the locality.)
Brinkman, Bruggemann 1423; Frielinghaus, Schlochtern 1423; Gerding, Uhlenberg 1350; Grothaus, Peindorf 1350; Halberbe in Peindorf (village) between Lause 1423 and Grothaus 1360; Linnemann, Uhlenberg 1471; Lause, Vessendorf 1467; and other German names not recognized here.
During the time of the East Kocouisation from 1140-1350 in Weblingholzhausen, only a few farms were established. The children from the farms left and emigrated in the surrounding area such as Holstein, Brandenburg, Pommern, Mecklenburg, and Oslepreuben and settled in the area.
It was a prosperous time in the Middle Age, 1200-1350. Then a pestilence swept through the country in 1350. Then came a famine, and in 1342 a great flood, and then again in 1374 another pestilence. About half of all mankind died during that time. In Osnabruck there were only 7 couples left. Robbery, destruction, famine and pestilence caused many families to die out.
After only one generation, the country recovered from its setbacks so that a new beginning could be started with the farms. Around 1400 they divided the land (estates). There were heirs and half heirs known even hundreds of years before.
During the time of the Middle Ages (1500), craftsman and industries settled around the church. The names were mentioned in the church register, 1500 to 1600. Also the estates at that time were called church farms. A small percent of their income had to go to the government market. Other side trades were acquired such as shoe repair, carriage driver, milk deliverer, furrier, lumber workers and factory workers. It was necessary to have a side income to live a healthy life.
In 1847, the full heirs (estates) stayed in the same family for years. The reduction of households 1805-1849 came from the fact that people emigrated to America.
The four primary sources for family names were: occupation, location, father's name, and personal characteristics.
St. Claire County in the early 1800’s
The Kaskaskia River and Mud creek forms St. Clair’s entire northern, western and southern boundaries. The Kaskaskia River, Mud creek, and Little Mud creek, which enter the township from the east, in section 13, flow in a westerly course, emptying into the Kaskaskia in section 16, and together with their small tributaries, water and drain the entire precinct. The timbered lands bordering on these streams furnished the attraction that impelled the first hardy pioneers to the creation of homes in what was indeed a dreary wilderness. The broad prairies, luxuriant in their growth of wild grasses and flowers, and which form the greater part of the township, were passed over by these pioneers as unfit for the habitation of men. Deeply studded woodlands with rippling waters hard by were looked upon as oases in the vast prairie stretches of Illinois. As early as 1816, the savage who returned to the loved banks of the Kaskaskia, where his wigwam had long, held sentinel, found the pale face in possession, energetic in hewing out a forest home.
The first German settlers were Bernard Dingwerth, William Harwerth and Joseph Stempel, who located here in 1833.
On November 7, 1833 the ship Virginia arrived from Bremen, Germany at the port in Baltimore, MD. On board there was a small group of people coming from the village of Glandorf, which is close to the city of Osnabrueck in the western part of Germany. Their occupations were listed as “farmer” and they had left Germany to begin a new life in America, hoping this country would provide them with better conditions for making a living.
In 1833 times weren't too good for small farmers around Glandorf. The family had grown so much that starvation was a daily guest in the homes. Rumors told about a new country in the west across the big ocean - AMERICA. Many families had left already. So a number of persons in the Harwerth-family considered emigration as a possibility of survival. In the summer of 1833 the following persons of the Harwerth family had made up their mind and were ready to leave their home and the rest of the family for ever: William, (Johann Wilhelm) born in 1815, the same year as Herman, son of Wilhelm, Theresia, and Clara, Elizabeth, (Elisabeth) Maria Catherine, Ferdinand, Friedrich, and Diedrik, (Dietrich). The Harwerths weren't alone. Bernhard Dingwerth from their home community was with them and married William Harwerth’s sister, Catharina Elisabeth Harwerth on January 9, 1834 in St Louis, King of France Catholic Church, St Louis, St Louis Co, MO. She was born October 31.1809. There was another Harwerth, Heinrich who married Catherine Ossege on July 13, 1837 in St Louis, King of France Catholic Church, St Louis, St Louis Co., MO.
There was also an Edward Dingwerth who had a son John Henry Dingwerth who was christened on May 27, 1838 in St Louis, King of France Catholic Church, St Louis, St Louis Co, MO.
After arrival at the port they quickly moved on westward towards the today's state of Illinois and helped settle Mud Creek, later to be known as St.Libory, IL. In 1835 the first store was opened. The first post-office, called Mud Creek, was moved to Hermanntown, in 1856. In 1878 the name was changed to St. Libory. In 1842, a blacksmith shop was opened within a mile of Darmstadt, and during the same year, smithy was opened within the present limits of the same village.
The Protestant Lutheran, built in 1842, was the first house for public worship. It was a small log building, and, in 1866, gave place to a more commodious brick structure, which was destroyed by lightning the following year. A cemetery, first used as a burial place in 1839, marks the location of the church.
THE PIONEERING GERMANS SETTLE IN CLINTON AND ST. CLAIR COUNTIES
“Clinton County was named in honor of the distinguished statesman, DeWitt Clinton, of New York. It had become the home of permanent and bona fide settlers as early as 1814, when the first land entries were made. At the time of the organization of the county, December 27, 1824, some 33,000 acres had been entered, three-fifths by actual settlers, the balance by speculators. The names of the actual settlers appear in the county census of 1825.
Land entries were made in all congressional townships of the county during that period of time, 1814 to 1824. All lands entered at that time were timberland. The value of prairie land was evidently not understood or appreciated. The population of the county in 1824 was about 1,100, consisting chiefly of Americans from southern states and Pennsylvania, with a mixture of some English and Irish, who had settled in the vicinity of Carlyle, IL.
By 1850, immigrants directly from the European shores comprise a significant portion of the population of Illinois with Germans by far providing the largest number. The first German settlement in Illinois was Dutch Hollow, established in St. Clair County in 1802, followed by a colony in Madison County south of Edwardsville in 1809 and a band of Germans who settled at Vandalia in 1818. The first census of Clinton County, taken in 1825, fails to disclose any identifiable German names. The first German settlement in Clinton County was, according to history, "the incidental work of two German adventurers, William Harwerth and Bernhard Dingwerth, who were strolling through Illinois on a hunting expedition". They had arrived in Baltimore about the year 1833. Their intention was to explore the west for a home, and in order to raise the necessary means for such an excursion, they hired out to work. Early in 1834 we see them on a hunting tour in Illinois. "They came to Clinton County and they resolved to locate there permanently. They purchased the improvements made earlier by some Americans in the vicinity of the present village of Germantown, and they now went to work at farming. The location selected was by no means a desirable one. The land was flat and badly drained, so as to offer constant obstacles to successful farming and, in addition, was the continual cause of malarial diseases. The numerous stones in the village cemetery tell a sad and frightful tale of the suffering of these early settlers and their families. About 95 percent of the 813 foreign-born settlers who were naturalized up to 1870 were Germans. Located nine miles west of Germantown, a second German settlement, New Baden, was established. The first Catholic settlers of the present town of New Baden and vicinity mostly emigrated from the Grand Duchey of Baden (Germany). They attended to their religious duties at Germantown and Highland, and later on at Damiansville, Trenton and Mascoutah where Herman lived and farmed.
It was, to a large degree, an extension of Mascoutah in St. Clair County since the founders all hailed from there. Germantown residents also had a part in the birth of New Baden - sending their teamsters to its site and sinking a well in order to provide drinking water for both the settlers and their animals. A former resident of St. Clair County determined that if the cattle and horses needed water, the teamsters might want something else, and he accordingly opened a saloon and eating-house in New Baden about 1844. In later years a distillery was erected and operated in the settlement. New Baden citizenry was largely made up of southern Germans and was said to make an interesting contrast to the sober and sedate northern Germans at Germantown.
A wave of German immigration dates from at least 1846, when Herman departed from Bremerhaven, Germany and landed in New Orleans, and when economic conditions (including a failure of the potato crop) caused German emigration, which had been 37,900 the previous year, to jump to 63,300. Prior to the 1850’s, the major port of embarkation for German emigrants to the US was the French port of Havre. Iit was not until 1852 that Bremen superseded Havre as the major port for the Emigration of German nationals.
Religion Denomination, No. each will accommodate, Value of Church Property
Methodist Episcopal 800, $1000
Presbyterian 800, $1000
Methodist Episcopal 1500, $700
Methodist Episcopal 600, $600
Roman Catholic 2500, $800
Presbyterian 800, $1000
Methodist Episcopal 1500, $700
Methodist Episcopal 600, $600
Roman Catholic 2500, $800
Newspapers: [NONE LISTED]
Approximately 725,000 Germans immigrated to the US.
TOWN OF ST. LIBORY.
We don't know how much equipment and possessions they carried with them when they came to America, however they must have had some money, for just a few months later in 1834 Johann Wilhelm Harwerth purchased his first parcel of land.
The Harwerths weren't alone. Bernhard Dingwerth from their home community was with them. William Harwerth and Bernhard Dingwerth were delegated to petition Bishop Joseph Rosati of St. Louis for a priest to serve the St. Libory Settlement. Together they held their first mass in William Harwerth's log cabin. The parishioners elected to build a log church on ground donated by Bernhard Dingwerth. W. Harwerth, D. Harwerth, W. Kracht, G. Bertke, and G. Terveer helped to build the log church that was finished on May 5, 1839.
Agriculturally, this is an excellent body of land. The streams are skirted with timber, and the land is undulating; the greater part of the precinct is a beautiful prairie, now under a high state of cultivation. The farm-buildings are good, and the farmers intelligent and enterprising. Population: --census of 1880-1,639. The acreage is 23,895, of which fully five-sixths is prairie. Great crops of the cereals gladden the hearts of farmers, while large numbers of stock, principally hogs, are annually fattened for the market.
Lack of facilities, furnished by railroad transportation, is the great drawback. At one time it was thought proposed improvements along the Kaskaskia would obviate this difficulty by giving water communication, but all that has flitted by, as a thing of the past. The precinct was organized, upon petition of its citizens, April 16th, 1870; prior to that time it was a part of Athens.
October 18, 1866 the town of Hermanntown was laid out. A Catholic church was erected close by in 1846 which was given the name of St. Libory [St. Liborius]. In the village the general store established it in 1849. In 1856 the post-office called "Mud Creek" was moved to this store and a post-master was appointed. Mills were built, business prospered, and, although people built on all sides of the platted town, no additions were made thereto. In 1874 the name of the post-office was changed from Mud Creek to St. Libory, so there is presented the anomaly of a village of perhaps 250 inhabitants, on land not regularly platted as a town site, with a name not recognized in the public records, save by common consent. A large mill has stood idle for several years past, while a small custom mill met the demands of the community.
The 1881 St. Clair Co. History Book mentions that William Harwerth and Bernhard Dingwerth in their earlier days, would build a raft on the Kaskaskia River, would stock it with country products, chiefly chicken, corn, and potatoes and would leisurely float down with the current into the Mississippi River, then on to New Orleans where they would sell the boat as well as the provisions.
EARLY HISTORY OF THE WESTPHALIANS
In the third century the Saxons pushed their way into the province from the Cimbrian peninsula; other tribes joined them, either voluntarily or under compulsion, and thus there arose a large confederation of tribes that bore the name of Saxons. The western part of the province between the Weser and the Lower Rhine appears from about the year 800 in the historical sources under the name of Westphalia. In the later middle Ages the region of the Weser was then considered a part of Westphalia.
The Westphalians were brought into contact with Christianity in the seventh century. The first apostles (about A.D. 695) were the two Ewalds, known from the colour of their hair as the White and the Black Ewald. At a later date the conversion of the Saxons especially engaged the attention of St. Boniface. He was not able to carry out his desire although Westphalian folklore has stories of the preaching of Boniface and even of his founding of churches. Probably, even though the proof is lacking, the attempts to found missions among the Saxons proceeded from Cologne. No permanent success was gained by the campaigns of the Frankish King Pepin (751-68) against the Saxons. The country was finally subdued after several bloody wars (772-804) by Pepin's son Charlemagne, who, as an apostle of the sword, brought the Saxons to Christianity. The questions asked the Saxon candidates for baptism are still in existence, as well as the answers that were to be made in which they were obliged to renounce the gods Donar, Wodan, and Saxnot. The baptism of the Saxon Duke Widukind (785) was of much importance; for after baptism he was unswervingly loyal to Christianity and its zealous promoter. The same is true of the Westphalians in general. After they had once accept the Christian faith, which "had been preached to them with an iron tongue by their bitterest enemies", hardly any other people were as loyally and devotedly attached to Christianity. Louis the Pious continued the work of his father. During his reign the first monasteries were founded; the most celebrated of these are the Benedictine Abbey of Corvey (815), and the Abbey of Herford (819) for Benedictine nuns.
Westphalia was only a part of Saxony, and in about the year 900 Saxony was made a duchy, after Ludolf, the ancestor of the ducal house, had been made a margrave in 850 during the reign of Louis the German. The duchy continued to exist until 1180. The last and greatest of the dukes was Henry the Lion, who lost the duchy through disloyalty to the emperor. This led to the division of Westphalia into numerous principalities. The southern part, the "Sauerland", fell as the Duchy of Westphalia to the Archdiocese of Cologne that retained it until 1803. This duchy had its own constitution and its own diet. In 1815 it became a part of the Kingdom of Hanover with which, in 1866, it was incorporated into Prussia.
In 1807-1813 part of Westfalen was part of the Napoleonic Kingdom of Westphalia with Napoleon's younger brother Jerome as king. In 1815, when Herman was born, most of Westfalen became Prussian; Osnabrueck and the northern Muensterland went to Hannover and Oldenburg.
Until the secularization in 1803 the Catholic Church held the largest area under her sovereignty (dioceses of Muenster, Paderborn, and Koeln).
Westfalen was named after one of the three main Saxon tribes that ruled the area. In the early middle Ages, the term was used for all of Saxony west of the River Weser. Despite this long tradition, it has never been a governing unit. The Kingdom of Westphalia was established by Napoleon for his brother; this consisted mostly of Hesse, and part of the historic province today has been transferred to Lower Saxony. There are three distinct parts of Westfalen - Münsterland to the north, the rural Sauerland and Siegerland to the south, and the eastern area incorporating most of what was formerly known as The Principality of Lippe
In 1807 Prussia had to concede its Westphalian possessions to France. The western part of Westphalia was obliged to change its nationality several times; it belonged in part to the French Empire, in part to the Grand Duchy of Berg under Joachim Murat. The eastern section of Westphalia into the Kingdom of Westphalia, the name of which was a misnomer, as the larger part of the new kingdom was composed of lands that were not Westphalian. The Kingdom of Westphalia was given to Napoleon's brother Jerome. The French continued the secularization of the monasteries, nor did they spare the convents. On 13 May 1809, Jerome decreed the suppression of six convents and on November 1, 1809, ordered the suppression of all religious foundations, chapters, abbeys, and priories with exception of those devoted to education. As far as possible the lands were sold. In 1815, the year Herman was born, after the French had been driven out of the country, Prussia received the former Duchy of Westphalia, the Abbey of Corvey, and the former free imperial city of Dortmund. In 1816 the Province of Westphalia was formed from these acquisitions.
HISTORY OF GERMANTOWN, ILLINOIS
The first settlement was built in the Germantown area during 1814. German settlers eventually filtered to the area from Saint Louis after hearing accounts of Illinois' beautiful farmland. Although they were forced to deal with swampy, flooded land full of disease carrying mosquitoes and disease, the German settlers sought to live near creeks and timberlands similar to those in their home country of Germany.
The Birth of Germantown
A log cabin schoolhouse was built in 1827 to educate the young settlers. Then in 1837, Catholic Germans purchased land to build a church. To pay off their debts, the Germans platted the land into town lots and sold them at an auction. The Germans originally named their settlement Hanover, but the name was later changed to Germantown to honor all the settlement's German settlers besides those from Hanover, Germany.
Growth & Development
The first building in the newly platted Hanover began operation as a store. A log house was used for a church until 1841 when the settlers built a church and school. The community quickly outgrew the new church and school so new buildings were again erected in 1854. Germantown was organized into a township during 1873.
In 1837, B.H. Heimann, of Hanover, Germany, became the first to settle in Lookingglass Township. Heimann purchased land from the United States government and developed a farm. Edward Teke, Herman Kalmer, Herman Rensing, and John Santel soon came to the Damiansville area and developed settlements of their own. By 1843, many German immigrants, mainly from Westphalia and Hanover, Germany, had arrived after hearing accounts of the area's fertile land from the initial German settlers.
A log cabin schoolhouse was built in 1844 to educate the area children. Herman arrived about 1847.
Saint Damian's Catholic Church was built in 1861 on the land purchased by the Right Reverend Bishop Junker. The development of the church brought a new name to the village. It had been previously named after the small Holland town, Dempter, but was changed to Damiansville to honor the church's founder, Bishop Damion Junker. A one-room schoolhouse was also built in 1861 to replace the log cabin schoolhouse.
Homes and businesses were soon erected around the church, forming the present day layout of Damiansville village. Both Henry Haidders and B. Stephens developed the community's first general stores during the year 1861. By 1881 the village enjoyed three stores, three saloons, two blacksmith shops, and one wagon-maker. Residents were able to enjoy goods from St. Louis as the general stores sent out peddle wagons stocked with dry goods to all the area farms. The wagons then traded the dry goods for eggs, butter, and produce, which would then be taken to St. Louis and traded for dry goods. The wagons would return to Damiansville and begin the trading process again.
In 1899, a railroad known as the Air Line, was built, the Company for the convenience of the people of Damiansville made a stopping place on the main road from Damiansville, and named it Damiansville Station.
Albers, Illinois History
Albers was established after a railroad depot on the Airline railway, which passes through present-day Albers, was created for Damiansville residents. F.H. Albers donated the land for the train depot, and the settlement, which began to develop around the depot, was named in his honor. Houses and businesses gradually began to develop along the depot, and it was not long before a school district was established in 1908. The two-room school had a capacity of 40 students, and was erected on ground that was deeded to the Rev. Bishop.
Henry Tonnies was one of the most important persons in the development of Albers. Tonnies was appointed Post Master of Albers in May of 1891. He was then appointed the ticket, freight, and express agent for the Southern Railroad Company in 1892 with a salary of 5.00 a month and commission. He also started milk shipping, and made Albers one of the main shipping sites on the road. Tonnies and Anton Stroot started a sawmill and connected it to a mill and a hydraulic cider press. In 1905 he was elected Highway Commissioner, and developed rock roads in the District. Tonnies was also instrumental in developing St. Bernard's Catholic Church and connecting a telephone line from Albers to Damiansville and New Baden.
New Baden Early Settlers
Walter Sawyer purchased the land on which New Baden rests from the US government on September 11, 1838. The initial settlers were most likely farmers and traders who were participating in the country’s great westward migration. New Baden, originally called Baden, was named in honor of the homeland, Baden, Germany, of New Baden’s first settlers.
The first Catholic settlers of the present town of New Baden and vicinity mostly emigrated from the Grand Duchy of Baden (Germany). They attended to their religious duties at Germantown and Highland, and later on at Damiansville, Trenton and Mascoutah.
The first homes were built before the town was laid out in 1855. Builder Frederick Carpenter purchased 155.14 acres of New Baden land for $450. The village of Baden was incorporated in 1884, bringing a village government and ordinances into activation.
Why families wished to leave Prussia/Germany, to emigrate to America in the 1840's.
From 1806 to 1815 many bloody battles were fought against the French. All of Germany was inundated by the French who had penetrated into Russia. There God came to our help and said, "Up to here and not farther." Then God beat this evil enemy with great coldness and hunger, and the rest of the enemy saw themselves forced to retreat. And so the German people, with renewed strength and God's help and assistance, drove this great emperor Napoleon, with all of his power, out of Germany and to Paris in France.
Our Prussian king at the same time was Friedrich Wilhelm Rex, 3rd King of Prussia, who had to live through all of these times of need and battle. In 1840 he left this earthly life and went into his eternal home. In his place his son, the Crown Prince, started the government of the King and he is now 4th King of Prussia. He is also called Friedrich Wilhelm.
So in these years of war Herman was born, 1815.
Bremen Passenger Lists
The“Ordiance Concerning the Emigration Traveling on Domestic or Foreign Ships” of 1832 in Bremen was the first state law to protect emigrants. Among other things it required from the shipowners to maintain passenger lists.
In 1851 the Bremen Chamber of Commerce established the “Nachweisungsbureau für Auswanderer” (the Information Office for Emigrants), to which the ship captains had to deliver their lists. The rules and regulations of the ´Nachweisungsbureau´ considerably improved the quality of both the stay at Bremen prior to the sailing plus the seaworthiness of the ships. Unfortunately, because of lacking office space from 1875 - 1908, staff of the ´Nachweisungs bureau´, decided to destroy all lists older than 3 years. With the exception of 2,953 passenger lists for the years 1920 –1939 all other lists were lost in World War II.
19th Century German Immigration In Historical Context
1806 marked the end of the Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation. This "First Reich"—founded in 962 A.D.—was defeated by Napoleon. In 1815 a German Federation was formed, another loose association of sovereign states with an appointed, not elected, Federal Diet in Frankfurt. By 1830 emigration began to pick up.
The Germans came from a wide geographic area and for a variety of reasons. They were a highly diversified group in terms of regional origin, religious and political orientation, education and socio-economic standing.
Westphalia, where Herman was born, is a province of Prussia situated between the Rhine and the Weser. The Netherlands and Hanover bound it on the northwest and north, on the east by Schaumburg-Lippe, Hanover, Lippe-Detmold, Brunswick, Hesse-Nassau, and Waldeck, on the south and southwest by Hesse-Nassau, on the west by the province of the Rhine and the Netherlands.
The political culture of the Old German Homeland Versus Life in the United States
One settler wrote back to Germany: “If I had said what I just said aloud in Germany, they would have shut me up in no time. I know that; for over there, alas, common sense and free speech lie in shackles. But enough of this, it is not exactly your favorite subject. Instead I invite you to come over here, should you want to obtain a clear notion of genuine public life, freedom for the people and a sense of being a nation, you’ll agree I am right. I have never regretted that I came here, and Never! Never! Again shall I bow my head under the yoke of despotism and folly”.
In 1837 the Germans of Belleville, IL declined to press for admitting German as an official language in court cases because this would have had a limiting effect on full participation by all other Americans in the outcome; and “we prefer our broadly based freedom over the meager continuation of an old way of life on foreign soil.” They felt that no array of immigrants from abroad had the right to continue to exist separately as an isolated breed if they arrive among a previously settled people who are not inferior in their cultural development. They were convinced that such an effort on the part of the Germans, particularly because their number was so large, it would be harmful to the well being and the continuity of this land, which, alone among all countries on the glove, offers to all reasonable people a vision of hope for the future. This was to prove realistic over the long term, but was criticized and called unfair to German culture by the more shortsighted contemporaries.
The 1.36 million German-speakers who arrived from Europe between 1830 and 1860, met head on with a well-defined “Americanism.” The immigrant-bashing nativist American Party, popularly called the Know-Nothings, tried to extend the waiting period for naturalization and for voting to 21 years instead of the five required by law. In addition, immigrants were to be permanently excluded from holding public office; and the poor, those with criminal records, and the loyal subjects of a “foreign power” – above all members of the Roman Catholic Church – were not to be admitted into the country at all.
In 1838, a Latin teacher and lawyer who had immigrated ten years earlier, described more realistically the ambivalent feelings of those Germans who were in the process of adapting the New World. “Being German-American is a very personal thing. We want and we find external independence here, a free middle-class way of life, uninhibited progress in industrial development, in snort, political freedom. To this extent we are completely American. We build our houses the way Americans do, but inside there is a German hearth that glows. We wear an American hat, but under its brim German eyes peer forth from a German face. We love our wives with German fidelity. We live according to what is customary in America, but we hold dear our German customs and traditions. We speak English, but we think and feel in German. Our reason speaks with the words of an Anglo-American, but our hearts understand only our mother tongue. While our eyes are fixed on an American horizon, in our souls the dear old German sky arches upward. Our entire emotional lives are, in a word, German, and anything that would satisfy our inner longing must appear in German attire.”
COMMENTS OF AN IMMIGRANT: During my lifetime I had to fight through severe trials. I worked day and night and walked in many places, spent many a sleepless night, and the money I earned there was scarcely enough to feed my family. At the same time I saw thousands immigrate to different parts of the world, to America and Australia. When thinking about it more closely, I realized that all of these emigrations were nothing more than the fault of the poverty that progressed with gigantic steps. And so within me, too, rose the thought to emigrate!
It was my desire to bring my children, while they were still with me and not in different places, to a place where they could find work and bread, as long as they would work hard and be frugal, where each of them could prepare for a happy and calm future. In Germany the poor man compared to the rich man is like a despised creature, or like a scarcely noticed creeping worm, who must slither and creep along in the dust in order not to be stepped on to death. So it is that the poor man must adjust himself and bend himself under the rich, who nevertheless scarcely seem to notice him! The poor man slaves for the rich one, but once the poor man has completed his day's work, what did he earn for his sour sweat? Only 7 1/2 to 10 silver groschen--which is 20 cents in American money--and on that the poor man is supposed to live with his family, pay his rent and pay his royal taxes. If he doesn't pay punctually, all that he owns is taken away from him by officials of the law, so that gentlemen who already have enough will get what is theirs. If one appears before a court of law, or an official, or a police officer, he must always appear in a bent position and with a bare head.
What will become of the poor children ? How many of them have to beg for their daily bread in front of people's doors? Parents who are still able to send their children to school have to pay the school, up until the children are 14 years old, money for books, clothing, food and drink. And after school is over, what is one to do with the children? They have learned professions where they are treated like dogs, to suffer hunger and thirst, and if they survive the difficult and miserable years of apprenticeship, what do they have? Then they become journeymen and they go to beg their bread in strange places before the doors of other people. And even if they get work, what do they earn as journeymen? The highest income per week is 1 Thaler--62 cents in American money. Or are the children to go into service and work for an entire year for nothing more than 6, 12 or 16 Thaler?
Speaking particularly of the boys, once they reach their 20th year, and are healthy, they must become soldiers and serve for 3 years. Now suffering starts, for during exercises and maneuvers they must endure hunger and thirst and cold. To keep them alive, every 5 days they receive one black loaf of bread, and every 10 days they receive 25 silver groschen. After 3 years of service a soldier is released from his regiment, and up to his 32nd year he is among the first to be called to the Landwehr [like the national guard]. Annually, 2 Sundays he must go for sharpshooting. For 2 and 3 Sundays he must go for meetings of his regiment. Every 2 years he must go for 14 days to 4 weeks for exercises and maneuvers. Then from his 32nd year on up to his 40th, he is with the 2nd regiment or 2nd level of troops. Even after his 40th year he continues to be a member of the Landsturm [like the civil defense].
During times of war, the Landwehr are the first troops to go to battle with the regiments that have just been drafted. The 2nd level of troops and the Landsturm must man the battlements. And so one is a soldier as long as one lives, and a tortured creature.
I was tired of this life, and therefore I decided to leave Germany with my wife to look for a better life in another part of the world, namely America.
Herman came to America about 1845 and married first about 1846.
Welcome to a puzzle of history! It begins in the late summer of 1843 when the ships began a special voyage from Bremen in Prussia, sailing for the United States. The ship's crew and about 185 passengers spend about 45 days at sea.
Most of the passengers were neighbors on farms in and around the small towns of Melle, in the Kingdom of Hannover, Prussia, located near present-day Osnabrück, Lower Saxony, Germany. Today we are still trying to learn why so many neighboring families simultaneously boarded ships in 1843 to move halfway around the world. Their destination was a wild frontier full of danger. This happened well before the major migrations from Germany between the 1850's and 1880's.
It is almost as if a group of neighboring engineers today decided to leave their homes, board a space shuttle, and fly together to settle a colony on the Sea of Crises on the moon. No one could have known that this trickle of brave pioneers would later swell to a tidal wave of immigrants so large that it changed the whole world.
19th Century German Immigration In Historical Context
1806 marked the end of the Holy Roman Empire of the German Nation. This "First Reich"—founded in 962 A.D.—was defeated by Napoleon. In 1815 a German Federation was formed, another lose association of sovereign states with an appointed, not elected, Federal Diet in Frankfurt. By 1830 emigration began to pick up.
German-Americans represent the largest group of immigrants arriving in the United States in all but three of the years between 1854 and 1894. Before the end of the century more than 5 million Germans had arrived and in the twentieth century another 2 million came. They came from a wide geographic area and for a variety of reasons. They were a highly diversified group in terms of regional origin, religious and political orientation, education and socio-economic standing.
Although conditions in the German states were not as bad as in Ireland, crop failures, inheritance laws, high rents, high prices, and the effects of the industrial revolution led to widespread poverty and suffering. Relatives and friends who emigrated first would write back and encourage others to follow. This led to "chain migrations" and group settlements. Fairly well-to-do farmers who saw a bleak future, poor ones with no future, paupers whom the authorities often paid to leave, revolutionaries after 1848, and many artisans, professionals, and some adventurers made up the spectrum of the 1840s and 1850s.
The French Revolution (1789) had not spread to Germany, but led to reforms, designed to break up feudal rule and give more power to the citizens. However, these reforms did not go far enough and eventually were stalled altogether. In 1848 a democratic revolution for "Unity, Justice and Freedom" failed
In 1866 the Austro-Prussian War led to the exclusion of Austria and the end of the German Federation. It was replaced by the North German Federation with Bismarck as Federal Chancellor. The Swiss had gained their legal independence from the German "Reich" in 1648.
German Immigration 1830-1850
By Ewald Albers of Zeven, Germany (translation by Hella Albers)
Only 8.5 ounces of drinking water a day. Immigrants were nothing but ship’s freight.
More than six million people left Germany during the last 200 years. Most of them went to the United States to begin their new life. Many immigrants mastered their fates by initiative, economy and industry. With justifiable pride they very frequently reported about their success to friends and relatives left behind. Those who had less success did not write as often, sometimes never. Sometimes they did not give their first sign of life until after years as those who were unlucky did not want to describe their bad situation; it would not have matched the image of the land of opportunity.
After their arrival in the US, the immigrants would rather write about how the passage had been. This often contained bad messages and one would think that this should have prevented many people of even considering emigration. Especially the period between 1830 to 1850 saw news that can only be described as horror news. During the era, a passage on a sailing ship took 45 to 60 days, depending on the weather. The freight boats transported coffee, rice, tobacco, cotton and other goods from America to Europe. On their way back, they "exported" people. The cargo compartments were broken down to steerages by means of wooden boards in order to have capacity for as much "freight" as possible.
A traveller described the quarters as follows: "The ship had 28 beds, each four ells (about 7 feet) wide and three ells (about 5 ½ feet) long. Five people were to sleep in each bed. However, only four could sleep there at a time. So I almost always slept on a crate. As soon as the ship was at sea, I tied myself to the crate with ropes so I could not be thrown off." The immigrants very often complained about the bad treatment by the crew, feeling treated as cattle.
Bad food was complained about very often. "The provisions were bad, the way they were fixed even worse. The bread had presumably made several journeys. It was not until the last eight days when the old bread had been eaten that we got better bread. The pork was completely spoilt even though better pork was in store for we got good pork during the last week. The water used for cooking was comparable to manure regarding dirtiness, color and smell and must have been bad already when it was taken aboard for the drinking water stayed good, but everyone got only a quarter" (less than 8.5 fluid ounces). Even though the Bremen Senate tried to achieve improvements the stated defects remained for a long time.
One % of the passengers died at sea. The age and occupation of the passengers has been recorded. Most men are farmers but we also find shoemakers, tailors, glaziers, cabinet makers, carpenters, smiths, millers, harness makers, brewers and weavers. Single girls are recorded as "servants". The ships agents in the bigger places in the Bremervörde/Zeven area probably bought passages for groups when they knew of enough people willing to emigrate. It is for this reason that the passenger lists of the ships very often show a local focus.
The ship party usually ended in the port of arrival. From then on, everyone was on their own again. There are no files about where the immigrants went. However, during the last years we begin to learn more about them as we hear of their descendants. These pieces of information show that the steerage passengers ended up across the whole United States in smaller and bigger groups. Several families went to different places before settling down for good on the vast continent. There are not only the errors in hearing and spelling mistakes from the original lists but also mistakes have been made while copying the lists.
Important Dates In German-American History in Herman’s lifetime – 1815 - 1875
1800 German-Americans voted overwhelmingly for Thomas Jefferson and helped elect him to the Presidency.
1830s German-Americans introduced gaily-decorated Christmas trees to America.
1834 The richest man in the U.S. was John Jacob Astor, a German immigrant who had organized the American Fur Company.
1837 The Pennsylvania legislature began publishing its laws and governor's message in German translation.
1839 Theodore Bernhard organized and introduced the first system of free textbooks at Watertown, Wisconsin.
1846 Maximilian Schaefer established the first great lager beer brewery in America.
1849 Eberhard Faber established in New York the pencil business which still perpetuates his name.
Dr. Abraham Jacobi opened the first free clinic for children in the U.S.
Dr. Abraham Jacobi opened the first free clinic for children in the U.S.
1851 The famous painting, "Washington Crossing the Delaware," painted by Emmanuel Leutze.
1850s First kindergarten in the U.S. established by Mrs. Karl Schurz in Wisconsin.
1852 The Studebaker Company became the world's largest producer of wagons. It later produced automobiles.
1860 Carl Schurz won the German-American vote for Lincoln by going on a 21,000 mile speaking tour which took him from the middle west to the Pennsylvanian Germans.
1860-65 516,000 German-Americans fight for the Union. 500 officers in the Union army were born in Germany; of the 2,213,363 soldiers in the Union army, over 23% were German-Americans.
1871 Thomas Nast, the first great American Caricaturist, was instrumental in the destruction of the Boss Tweed ring of New York City.
1874 Alfalfa introduced to the U.S. by Wendelin Grimm.
A SEARCH FOR MY GREAT GRANDFATHERS PARENTS
By William Joseph Heckenkemper 2005
My Great Grandfather is Herman Heckenkemper, born December 5, 1815 in Germany.
One time back in the 50’s or 60’s my father William John Heckenkemper told me he had written to Germany to see if he could find some Heckenkempers. I don’t remember if he didn’t get an answer or if they said none could be found. But he didn’t find them. Like many young people who are newly married and have young children of their own I had only a mild interest in what he tried to find but I did keep it in the back of my mind.
Then as my children started to leave home my sister, Mary Lou Le Boeuf and I, (William (Bill) Joseph Heckenkemper) started talking about our genealogy again. My sister had a computer and got some genealogy software and started recording what we found. She did much more than I did but I kept encouraging her as I appreciated what she found and how she kept track of it. We talked about Herman Heckenkemper but my father was dead and we didn’t know who in his family to talk too as most of them were also gone. We just didn’t know what to do, as we had never tried to trace our genealogy.
With that frustration we decided to look at my Mother’s father and his genealogy as my aunt had developed support for registration in the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) and had her children registered. The lineage that justified the DAR registration was through my mother’s father Daniel Harrison, to a relative James Dowdle who was born in 1758 in Spotsylvania Co. VA and died in 1802 in Elizabethtown, Hardin County, KY. It listed Daniel’s father as Edward Harrison and his burial in Arkansas. So in the summer of 1994 my sister, my brother John Heckenkemper and I went to Arkansas to look at cemeteries and see what other documentation we could find about Edward Harrison’s parents etc. Well we found nothing on Edward Harrison at the Arkansas History Commission records facility in the main Library in Little Rock, Arkansas; we could find nothing on the family. Finally I asked the second in authority at the records center if he could help. We were looking for what information we could find on Daniel Harrison’s father Edward Harrison. All we really knew about him was that he was a minister of the Methodist church and he died in 1883. Well as it happened there were some records of the Methodist church in the record center and this gentleman knew where to find them. In a little while he came back with a number of books that we could look through. My sister, Mary Lou found an Edmund Harrison mentioned that was a circuit-riding minister. Well to make a long story short; that proved to be our Great Grandfather on my Mother’s side of the family. Once we found his name was Edmund and not Edward my sister found his genealogy back to about 1000 in England. It just goes to show how a small mistake when corrected can be very valuable.
This finding and tracing the Harrison lineage back so far really enkindled our interest in the Herman Heckenkemper family. Then sometime in 1996 my youngest son Jeffrey Michael was surfing the Internet and he found some Heckenkemper’s in Germany that I eventually started corresponding with. On September 23, 1996 I wrote to Norbert Heckenkemper in Oelde, Germany and asked if he could help me. I told him I was looking for some family history of Herman Heckenkemper. He is my Great Grandfather who came to America probably in the late 1840’s. I did not know where Herman came from in Germany but a family Priest had told me he was a schoolteacher in Coesfeld, Germany. I also told Norbert I did not know Herman’s parents names. Most of what was known about Herman was from a letter by Reverend G. H. Netemeyer, a Catholic Priest and a Grandson of Herman and a friend of my parents as follows:
“Herman Heckenkemper was a school teacher in Coesfeld, Germany. When he came to this country he came to New Orleans. He carried money in a money belt. Some shady characters learned about this. They intended to take is from him (roll him) on landing at New Orleans. He learned about this plan so he jumped ship before landing and swam to shore, hiding under the piers until dark. When he emerged from hiding, he took a boat to St. Louis by way of the Mississippi. He came to Illinois, taking up farming about a mile west of Albers.
“His first wife, Mary Ann Dingwerth, died of cholera. She is buried in the Catholic Cemetery at Germantown. His grandson, Ben Heckenkemper tried to locate the grave there some years ago, without success.
“During the civil War, Herman Heckenkemper had a very good wheat crop. The U. S. Government sent agents to buy his wheat. He refused to sell it to them because the price was too low; besides the money value was practically nil. These agents told him that if he did not sell it to the Government, the government would take it.
“He made a deal with these agents that he would sell his wheat to the government, if he could get his money whenever he wanted it. (He did not want the devalued money.) He then watched the money market very closely so that he called for his money the day before the money was revalued to its former value. In this way, he had all the money at its devalued price, and the next day it had the value that it had originally.
“The first two paragraphs, my mother told me. The last two paragraphs were told to me be Ben Heckenkemper, son of Ben Heckenkemper Sr. S/ Father Netemeyer”
While I waited for a response and not knowing who to turn to in the family and with the above information I decided I would see what I could find out from Clinton County in Illinois where my father was born. After several communications; on June 18, 1997 I received a copy of Herman Heckenkemper’s probate from the Circuit Clerk of Clinton County in Carlyle, Illinois; it proved interesting but had no record indicating his parent’s name. But it did show he died March 10, 1875 in St. Louis and he is buried in the back of the old part of the cemetery in Damiensville, IL. A short time later from Clinton County I also received a hand written copy of a July 11, 1846 document by which Herman acquired title to the land he settled on and farmed and where he raised a family; including where my father was born. I felt I was making progress but it did not reveal his parents name so again I was stopped. So in October 1997 my sister, my brother and I went to Illinois and looked at cemeteries, County record centers, churches and anyplace else that we could find that might give us Herman’s parents name. However, since he died in 1875 and most records prior to 1877 were sparse, we again found nothing we needed. We found plenty about Herman from the time he arrived in America but nothing about how he got here or any prior life.
On October 13, 1996 I receive a letter from Norbert and Guido Heckenkemper. Guido is Norbert’s son. They thanked me for contacting them as they thought their family only lived in Oelde – Stromberg, Germany. They did not know any Heckenkempers moved to America. They said, “Maybe our families have the same roots.” Then they told me about their family but it only went back to the late 1800‘s so it didn’t go back far enough.
On October 22, 1996 I wrote back to thank them for answering me and I also wrote to Johannes Heckenkemper who they mentioned in their first letter. I never heard from Johannes Heckenkemper but I did get a very nice letter from his daughter Nicole Heckenkemper. I have since found out that people under 40 generally are able to speak English but those over that age do not. So most of my correspondence with German Heckenkemper’s are under 40. That is why Guido wrote with Norbert. Guido speaks English and Norbert does not. Nor do I speak German so communication is difficult.
I have lost the date of the next letter I received from Norbert and Guido, as they did not date it and I have misplaced the envelope. However, Norbert had searched their family history from 1636 to current and he gave me several pages of names, dates etc. He said:
“We think the identity of your Great Grandfather is clear now.”
In 1783 Johann Georg Heckenkemper married Caterine Dreikmann in Stromberg
They had three children:
1. Anna-Magereta Heckenkemper
2. Georg Heckenkemper
3. ? Male Heckenkemper
In 1805 Georg Heckenkemper married Gertrud Lucke
First child was: Ludwig Heckenkemper in 1806
Ludwig is the Great Grand father of Norbert Heckenkemper
Second child was: Anna Catharine Heckenkemper in 1809
Gertrud Lucke expects her third child (Hermann) when Georg dies.
It was usual in that time that a widowed person was married again in the time of three months by the church, so that the widow with children would not get poor. Pregnant women would be married, so that the child was born legal. Then the child got the name of the stepfather.
In this way Gertrud was married to Franz Trockel
Therefore Stephan Trockel (not Hermann) was born March 3, 1815
They had another child die at birth.
Stephan Trockel marries M.H. Lange and they have one child: Augustinus Christianus on February 14, 1845.
Stephan Trockel from Stromberg immigrates with family to North America in 1846. This is verified in: BEITRAGE ZUR WESTFALISCHEN FAMILIENFORSCHUNG 1964-1966
My assumption and that of Norbert Heckenkemper is that when Stephan arrived in USA he assumed his real fathers Heckenkemper name. But without find a record of his parents I can’t know for sure. It is possible that his wife and child died on the ship over as often happened but we don’t know. However I had a problem with this information because the German record of his birth is 3-3-1815 and family records show Herman celebrated Dec. 6, 1815 as his birthday. So in addition to changing his name which I easily could understand but changing his birthday; was he hiding or something?
From that time on I have been searching to find how Stephan Trockel or Herman Heckenkemper entered the USA. I have also had e-mail communication with some Trockel’s but found nothing of Stephan Trockel. Many times I have looked into records of the Family History Library but found nothing different. So it is possible there is another family of Stephan Trockel’s that is really a Heckenkemper.
In May of 1999 Bob and Melissa Netemeyer invited my sister, my brother and me and our spouses to a Netemeyer-Heckenkemper reunion in Albers, Illinois, which is where Herman Heckenkemper settled when he came to America. That is the same property acquired on July 11, 1846. My father William J. Heckenkemper was born there and when I got to Illinois I found that Heckenkempers still lived on the original homestead where my father was born. There must have been 400 people at the reunion. Most of them were Netemeyers as we were celebrating the marriage of one of Herman’s daughters, Elizabeth Heckenkemper to Gerhard Lambert Netemeyer on 11-29-1880. We talked to everyone there old enough to perhaps have some knowledge of Herman’s parents. No one knew who his parents were. We were again at a standstill!
In June 2004 my first daughter Kathryn Schooley and her husband Jim asked me to go to Germany on a tour. I decided to go and I contacted Norbert Heckenkemper’s daughter Inga Heckenkemper whom I had been in e-mail contact with, and told her I was coming and where my tour would take me. It was not very close to her or Oelde and Stromberg where her family lived, so Inga invited my to stay over after the tour and she would collect me in Frankfurt and take me to her apartment in Giesen and then the next day we would drive to Stromberg to meet Norbert and all the other Heckenkempers who lived in Oelde and Stromberg. Oelde and Stromberg are about 5 minutes apart by car. I gladly accepted and Inga and a friend Tobias Richter met us for dinner in Frankfurt and then took me to Giesen, a lovely little German town that I saw much of on foot. The next day we drove to Stromberg and I got to visit with many of the Heckenkempers and Tobias’s parents at a picnic on the Heckenkemper farm. We also visited Oelde. I thoroughly enjoyed myself and felt we were related.
A NEW TURN OF EVENTS
In 2003 I joined the State Historical Society of Missouri to enlist their effort in searching for Herman’s parents in the death records of Herman who died March 10, 1875 in a St. Louis hospital. I received no positive results from them so when they asked me to renew my membership I declined and told them I had asked for help and they had ignored my request. Then on September 12, 2004 I received a very nice long letter from Laurel Boeckman, Sr. Reference Specialist with the Reference Library of The State Historical Society of Missouri. They had apparently not received my request and she now sent me a considerable amount of information, much of which I already had, but most importantly she suggested I contact the Schwestern Unserer Lieben Frau (Sisters of Notre Dame), Kloster Annenthal, Gerlever Weg 33, 48635, Coesfeld, DEUTSCHLAND (Germany), Phone: 02541/7208-0, www.snd-d.de Contact sister: Schwester Maria Hatwig Doktor, SND.
Well I did contact Sister Schwester and what a surprise I had when after Inga Heckenkemper and Tobias translated a German document as did Tom Hartman a UMC student that Laurel Boeckman found. What the documents said is that Hermann Heckenkemper was born on December 5,1815 and baptized on 12-6-1815. This fits the date we have for Herman. But the document also states that Hermann was not a real Heckenkemper as his father was Anton Zehliger (Seliger) and his mother was Elisabeth Rose and Hermann was named after the kotten (farm) where they were married. So now I have asked some more questions.
Laurel Boeckman referred me to a web site that told me the following.
IDENTIFYING GERMAN NAMES
Many German names have their roots in the Germanic Middle Ages. A name identified a specific person and later a group of persons (family name); at first through verbal usage, it was later fixed through writing. All social classes and demographic strata aided in the development of names.
The earliest are the names derived from the place of dwelling and the location of the homestead. If a person or family migrated from one place to another, they were identified by the place they came from. The largest group and the most easily recognizable names are those derived from the vocation or profession of the first bearer. They tell you what the first bearer did for a living. There is one group where the name derives from the first names of first bearer and another where the names come for a physical or other characteristic of first bearer. Finally there are names, which tell you the state, or region a first bearer and his family came from; the age old division in tribes and regions (low German, middle German and upper German) is often reflected in names. But for non-German speakers they are at first hard to "localize”. Especially those on the Dutch border and Northern Germany sound very much like Dutch or English names.
Furthermore, if you know a little German, you will be able to recognize names more easily; if you do not know German there are a number of clues to look for.
My belief Changed.
I now realize that this last Hermann is really our Herman. I have two letters from people who are doing some research for me in Coesfeld and Stromberg, Germany. Allowing for different spelling in records from 1815 here is what those letters revealed:
Catharina Elisabeth Heckenkamper married Anthon Zehliger 11 July 1810 in Oelde, Germany. It appears they lived on land she inherited as the “farm heiress” from her Heckenkamper family. Catharina died May 17, 1814 and Anthon inherited the Heckenkemper farm and was then called Heckenkemper. On July 20, 1814 Anthon Zehliger, called Heckenkemper, married Elizabeth Rose. On Dec. 5, 1815 Johann Hermann was born and was baptized on Dec. 6, 1815. As was sometime done according to the statement above; the birth records showed him to be named Heckenkamper after the land that they then lived on. This is the date I have been looking for because it is the birthday of my Great grandfather Herman. Some documents spell the last name with an “a” rather that a third “e” and some use the “e”.
On top of that Laurel Boeckman found a passenger list that has a Hermann Huckenkamper arriving New Orleans on Jan. 6, 1846 on ship Damariscotta from the port of Bremerhaven, Germany. That fits with what has been passed down within the family that he arrived through New Orleans. Bremerhaven is directly North of Oelde, Germany where Hermann was born. I also have a copy of a deed where Herman Hankenkamper purchased the land in July 11, 1846 that the Heckenkempers still live on. I find a lack of same spelling in documents but that appears to be normal.
I was in Germany in June of 2004 and I visited the Heckenkempers and was on the Heckenkemper farm. I don’t know if it was exactly the same farm or only a part of it but Heckenkempers lived there prior to and continuously since Hermann was born there. In much the same way Heckenkempers live on the farm Herman bought in Illinois. The Heckenkempers in Germany currently spell their name exactly as we do; so I assume the different spellings were due to the people who made the recordings. I am trying to determine if Hermann taught school at Coesfeld as we have been told that Hermann did. That would pretty well clinch it with me.
I have two large foulders of correspondence including many letters in German and their translations that document these findings. This document only summarizes these findings. However, the actual translation of this last letter speaks to the school teacher belief. I believe this is as good as we are going to get on the question; "Did Herman Heckenkemper teach school in Coesfeld Germany?"
27. April 2005 Dear Mister Heckenkämper,
I got your E-Mail and Mrs Seinberg of the archive of the diocese has certainly told you that I couldn’t find more information.
Now – on Monday – the old archivist of the town Coesfeld told me that he had found something that could be an explanation of the oral handing down of a priest there that there had been a teacher Heckenkämper in Coesfeld:
In the rural area near Coesfeld, called Harle, there was an old farm with the name Heckenkamp. Its owners immigrated to America September 12, 1848. They were Johann Bernhard, his wife Anna Catharina and their sons Johann-Heinrich and Franz-Wilhelm. One daughter died 1842. The farmhouse and the land were sold. (This family immigrated to America and settled in Quincy, IL.)
November 1, 1869 a teacher Gernard Wennemer from Elte near Rheine became the teacher in Harle and he lived in the farmhouse. One can assume that the farm kept the name Heckenkamp and the people around called the inhabitants “the Heckenkämpers”
The teacher Wennemer will certainly have had a good contact to the priests of the churches in Coesfeld.
About that time a priest from America visited a friend in Coesfeld. He will have met the teachers and heard that the teacher of Harle moved to the farmhouse Heckenmkamp. He will have remembered the name Heckenkamp or Heckenkämper and will have presumed that the teacher Wennmar on the farm Heckenkamp was your forefather. I think it went this way and it is a mix-up with your great-grandfather Johann Hermann Heckenkämper from Oelde. Or did the name Gerhard Wennemar from Elte near Rheine exist in the line of your great-grandmother? It must be a mix-up.
Dear Mister Heckenkämper I hope you got clarity now and can calm down. A further searching here in Coesfeld is not possible. Here in Coesfeld in the archives they did everything possible to find out about a teacher Heckenkämper.
I wish you and your family all the best and God’s blessing.
My best regards Signed Schwester M. Thiatilde
I believe this is most likely what happened when Fr. Netemeyer visited Germany and heard that a teacher lived on the Heckenkemper farm. Anyway as Sister Thiatilde stated a further searching here in Coesfeld is not possible. I believe the word of mouth and Fr Netemeyers letter were in honest error.
Finally I believe we have found the family of Herman Heckenkemper my Great Grandfather. He was born Johann Hermann Heckenkämper in Oelde Germany but if spelled correctly as in real life Heckenkemper. He appears to have dropped the Johann name as far as any of us can determine. The Heckenkempers in Oelde that I visited spell Heckenkemper just as we do.
I have so many people to thank for this difficult research! Much of it was done in Germany by people I have never met but would like to someday to personally thank them. I have thanked all of them by e-mail but that’s not the most satisfying way. William J. (Bill) Heckenkemper 2005
There are so many people to thank for this difficult research! My brother Bill Heckenkemper spent many hours of correspondence and a trip to Germany to research this information.
With Thanks to:
Mary Lou LeBoeuf
Schwester M. Thiatilde
Schwester Hatwig Doktor