My interest in Schwechheimer Genealogy was renewed this year when I found my mother had a good DNA match with Otis. It turns out that Otis and my mother have Scwechheimer ancestry. These Schwechheimers lived for over 100 years in the German Colony of Hirschenhof in present day Latvia. Through some quick genealogy, I came up with this connection:
Unfortunately, there seems to be a problem on Otis’ side at the point of the circle.
More Than One Gerhard Schwechheimer?
Here is the 1847 birth record I found for Johann Georg Scwechheimer.
Johann Georg’s father was Gerhard Schwechheimer. Before Gerhad, there is either a name or an occupation. I can’t make it out. This Gerhard was married to Jacobine Schwechheimer. This is where I likely went wrong. I had this reference:
This is from a book on the Gangnus family. The next to the last born in this large family was Rosine – my ancestor. I assumed that Johann Gerhard was the same as the Gerhard who was the father of the Johann Georg Schwechheimer above.
Then I came upon this Geni tree:
This tree shows that Gerhard’s father was Georg Michael (Ludvig) Schweccheiner. The profile manager, Lāsma, had the following further information about Gerhard:
I am not able to read Latvian, but I do get the impression that this person was from Helfreichshof which was the Colony to the North of HIrschenhof.
However, a spreadsheet I have created based on an online interactive map of the two colonies indicates that Gerhard’s father, Georg Michael Schwechheimer lived in Hirschenhof on farm # 48:
It looks like the Schwechheimers were neighbors to each other.
That means that if Otis’ ancestor Gerhard Schwechhemer is not the brother of my ancestor Rosine Schwechheimer, then perhaps Jacobine is Rosine’s sister. The Gangnus genealogy above had Jacobine born in 1807. The problem with this date is that it is between two siblings. Those two siblings were born July 20, 1806 and March 18, 1808. That leaves a slim margin for Jacobine to be born. The Jacobine in the Geni web site was born 1810. This would put her between two siblings born in 1809 and 1813, so that gives a little more leeway. I looked in the Linden Church records and did not see a Jacobine Schweccheimer born in 1807.
A New Tree
Here is the new tree:
In this scenario, I am a 4th and 5th cousin to Otis. This would mean that Rosine and Georg Gerhard were married 1st cousins. First cousins marriages were much more common at that time. This tree is an improvement over my previous one as it accounts for both Rosine and Gerhard Schwechheimer the parents of Johann Georg Schwechheimer. I would like to create a web page concerning my Schwechheimer ancestry. I am 1/16th Schwechheimer or 6.25%. It is interesting to think about how little has been known about this part of my heritage. Or put another way, my Hirschenhof ancestors represent one quarter of my ancestry and Schwechheimer would be one quarter of that Hirschenhof ancestry.
Summary and Conclusions
- Thanks to Lāsma’s Geni Web Site work on the Schwechheimer family, I have a better tree for Otis who I match by DNA
- More work could be done nailing down marriage and birth records for Otis’ line
- I am also grateful to the creator of the Hirschenhof interactive map. This map is useful in tracing where colonists lived and the succession of holders of the different farms. This succession results in a geographical genealogy.
- Next step is to brush up on my internet and genealogical skills and put up a web page on my Schwechheimer ancestors.