Friday, January 28, 2011

Palatine History of Germany link to Mary Magdalena Michael and Augusta County Virginia

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by Lorine McGinnis Schulze
Olive Tree Genealogy
Copyright © 1996 [This article has been published, with my permission as
Irish Palatine Story on the Internet
in Irish Palatine Association Journal, No. 7 December 1996
The Palatinate or German PFALZ, was, in German history, the land of the Count Palatine, a title held by a leading secular prince of the Holy Roman Empire. Geographically, the Palatinate was divided between two small territorial clusters: the Rhenish, or Lower Palatinate, and the Upper Palatinate. The Rhenish Palatinate included lands on both sides of the Middle Rhine River between its Main and Neckar tributaries. Its capital until the 18th century was Heidelberg. The Upper Palatinate was located in northern Bavaria, on both sides of the Naab River as it flows south toward the Danube and extended eastward to the Bohemian Forest. The boundaries of the Palatinate varied with the political and dynastic fortunes of the Counts Palatine.
The Palatinate has a border beginning in the north, on the Moselle River about 35 miles southwest of Coblenz to Bingen and east to Mainz, down the Rhine River to Oppenheim, Guntersblum and Worms, then continuing eastward above the Nieckar River about 25 miles east of Heidelberg then looping back westerly below Heidelberg to Speyer, south down the Rhine River to Alsace, then north-westerly back up to its beginning on the Moselle River.
The first Count Palatine of the Rhine was Hermann I, who received the office in 945. Although not originally hereditary, the title was held mainly by his descendants until his line expired in 1155, and the Bavarian Wittelsbachs took over in 1180. In 1356, the Golden Bull ( a papal bull: an official document, usually commands from the Pope and sealed with the official Papal seal called a Bulla) made the Count Palatine an Elector of the Holy Roman Empire. During the Reformation, the Palatinate accepted Protestantism and became the foremost Calvinist region in Germany.
After Martin Luther published his 95 Theses on the door of the castle church at Wittenberg on 31 October 1517, many of his followers came under considerable religious persecution for their beliefs. Perhaps for reasons of mutual comfort and support, they gathered in what is known as the Palatine. These folk came from many places, Germany, Holland, Switzerland and beyond, but all shared a common view on religion.
The protestant Elector Palatine Frederick V (1596-1632), called the "Winter King" of Bohemia, played a unique role in the struggle between Roman Catholic and Protestant Europe. His election in 1619 as King of Bohemia precipitated the Thirty Years War that lasted from 1619 until 1648. Frederick was driven from Bohemia and in 1623, deposed as Elector Palatine.
During the Thirty Years War, the Palatine country and other parts of Germany suffered from the horrors of fire and sword as well as from pillage and plunder by the French armies. This war was based upon both politics and religious hatreds, as the Roman Catholic armies sought to crush the religious freedom of a politically-divided Protestantism.
Many unpaid armies and bands of mercenaries, both of friends and foe, devoured the substance of the people and by 1633, even the catholic French supported the Elector Palatine for a time for political reasons.
During the War of the Grand Alliance (1689-97), the troops of the French monarch Louis XIV ravaged the Rhenish Palatinate, causing many Germans to emigrate. Many of the early German settlers of America (e.g. the Pennsylvania Dutch) were refugees from the Palatinate. During the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars, the Palatinate's lands on the west bank of the Rhine were incorporated into France, while its eastern lands were divided largely between neighbouring Baden and Hesse.
Nearly the entire 17th century in central Europe was a period of turmoil as Louis XIV of France sought to increase his empire. The War of the Palatinate (as it was called in Germany), aka The War of The League of Augsburg, began in 1688 when Louis claimed the Palatinate. Every large city on the Rhine above Cologne was sacked. The War ended in 1697 with the Treaty of Ryswick. The Palatinate was badly battered but still outside French control. In 1702, the War of the Spanish Succession began in Europe and lasted until 1713, causing a great deal of instability for the Palatines. The Palatinate lay on the western edge of the Holy Roman Empire not far from France's eastern boundary. Louis wanted to push his eastern border to the Rhine, the heart of the Palatinate.
While the land of the Palatinate was good for its inhabitants, many of whom were farmers, vineyard operators etc., its location was unfortunately subject to invasion by the armies of Britain, France, and Germany. Mother Nature also played a role in what happened, for the winter of 1708 was particularly severe and many of the vineyards perished. So, as well as the devastating effects of war, the Palatines were subjected to the winter of 1708-09, the harshest in 100 years.
The scene was set for a mass migration. At the invitation of Queen Anne in the spring of 1709, about 7 000 harassed Palatines sailed down the Rhine to Rotterdam. From there, about 3000 were dispatched to America, either directly or via England, under the auspices of William Penn. The remaining 4 000 were sent via England to Ireland to strengthen the protestant interest.
Although the Palatines were scattered as agricultural settlers over much of Ireland, major accumulations were found in Counties Limerick and Tipperary. As the years progressed and dissatisfactions increased, many of these folk seized opportunities to join their compatriots in Pennsylvania, or to go to newly-opened settlements in Canada.
There were many reasons for the desire of the Palatines to emigrate to the New World: oppressive taxation, religious bickering, hunger for more and better land, the advertising of the English colonies in America and the favourable attitude of the British government toward settlement in the North American colonies. Many of the Palatines believed they were going to Pennsylvania, Carolina or one of the tropical islands.
The passage down the Rhine took from 4 to 6 weeks. Tolls and fees were demanded by authorities of the territories through which they passed. Early in June, the number of Palatines entering Rotterdam reached 1 000 per week. Later that year, the British government issued a Royal proclamation in German that all arriving after October 1709 would be sent back to Germany. The British could not effectively handle the number of Palatines in London and there may have been as many as 32 000 by November 1709. They wintered over in England since there were no adequate arrangements for the transfer of the Palatines to the English colonies.
In 1710, three large groups of Palatines sailed from London. The first went to Ireland, the second to Carolina and the third to New York with the new Governor, Robert Hunter. There were 3 000 Palatines on 10 ships that sailed for NY and approximately 470 died on the voyage or shortly after their arrival.
In NY, the Palatines were expected to work for the British authorities, producing naval stores [tar and pitch] for the navy in return for their passage to NY. They were also expected to act as a buffer between the French and Natives on the northern frontier and the English colonies to the south and east.
After the defeat of Napoleon (1814-15), the Congress of Vienna gave the east-bank lands of the Rhine valley to Bavaria. These lands, together with some surrounding territories, again took the name of Palatinate in 1838.
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  • Name: Johannes Frederick Kirshov MICHAELS

  • Sex: M

  • Birth: ABT 1723 in Berks County, PA

  • Will: 29 MAY 1798 Pg 315, Vol 3, to wife Elizabeth to live with son Christian. To six sons John, Christian, George, Jacob, Frederick, William, 100 acres each. saw mill to John's tract.

  • Death: AFT 1798

  • Note:
    Palintate of Germany - son Jacob . Information taken from will probated 1798 of Frederick Michaels in 1798, he was a faremr. History of Pendleton County, Virginia by O. F. Morton and the first marriage records of Augusta County, Virginia. Information gathered and given by Sybil Murlene Michael Baldwin. Frederick Michael dies between Many and September 1798 in Augusta County, Virginia.
    Ethnicity: German
    Occupation: Pioneer Farmer
    Religion: Peaked Mountain German Reformed Church
    Residence: Augusta County, Virginia
    Will: May 29, 1798 in Staunton, VA courthouse
    Lived in Augusta Coiunty, VA. He purchased 983 Acres of land from Robert Gregg in 1788. The Deed Book lists him as being from Rockingham County, VA (vol 1, pages 354-355 lists FREDERICK MICHAEL who took oath os allegiance to the Government on October 20, 1744, after arriving from Rotterdam.
    In Will Book 8, page 313, Augusta County, VA: The will of Fredrick Michael dated 29 May 1788. It was proved 18 September 1798. The will names his wife 'Elizabeth' who was to live with their son 'Christian'. Six sons were named, each to receive 100 acres of property. Four daughters were also named. They were to receive the sawmill located on John's tract.

    Father: Johan Nicholas Michaels, b: 1698 in Palintate of Germany who was Marriage 1st, Elizabeth Fundernerin

    Children of Johannes Frederick Kirshov Michael & Elizabeth Michael
    1. Magdelina Michael - married George C. Weikle, May 30, 1796
    2. John Michael, Sr. - born about 1760, Augusta County,married 1st Juliana
    & 2nd Elizabeth Shaffer, May 10, 1803 in Augusta County, Va., died Oct 23,
    in Clinton County, In.
    3. Christian Michael - married Catherine Messersmith Sept. 11, 1799 in Augusta
    County, died in Summers Co, WV
    4. William Michael - born Mar. 25, 1768, Va., married Barbara Harper 1793 in
    County, Va., died May 15, 1845 in Berrian County, Mich.
    5. Jacob Michael - born 1766, Augusta County, married Barbara Rust March 2,
    in Rockingham County,Va, died 1850 in Knox County, Tenn.
    6. Frederick Michael, Jr. - born 1765, married Catherine Rust 1793 in
    County, Va, died 1845 in Clark County, Ohio
    7. George Michael - born Aug. 30, 1770 in Augusta County, Va., married
    Hein Mar. 1, 1808 in Augusta County, Va, died Aug 10, 1839 in Clinto
    8. Susan Michael - married Henry Simmons, born about 1785
    9. Elizabeth Michael - married Jacob Daggy Nov. 16, 1790 in Augusta County,
    10. Mary Margaret Michael - born about 1784, married George Moyers Sept. 23,
    1800 in Augusta County, Va.
    11. Ann Michael - married Philip Weikle Oct 17, 1797 in Augusta County, Va.

    The above mentioned John Michael, Sr. was the father of 19 children, 12 to
    his first wife Julianna & 7 to his second wife Elizabeth Shaffer. One of the
    daughters of John & Julianna was Susannah, born 1781, Susannah married Daniel
    Weikle, son of George and Elizabeth and a brother of George, John & Philip.
    Daniel was born about 1786, he & Susannah were married May 31, 1803 in Augusta
    County, Va by William
    King. Unfortunately we know little else about them at present, we do have
    hopes that someday information will turn up.

    We mentioned the Monroe County Deed books in our earlier discussion of
    Philip, its time to take a closer look at some of the documented records that
    have surfaced during our search, this will give us a better prospective on our
    The first settlers of Augusta, as their names indicate, were Scotch and Irish, but soon a few English and many Germans and persons of German lineage, from Pennsylvania, joined the community. Each party brought with them the religion, habits and customs of their ancestors, and this led to the erection of churches of different denominations and to a variety of little social circles, which, however, were never at any time very exclusive. The prevalence of German names evidences that a considerable part of the immigrants were of Teutonic origin. The superior intelligence of the people was due to the fact that the county was populated with adults, and it requires both talent and enterprise to produce voluntary change of country. It may be assumed with confidence as a truth, in our opinion, that there was as much talent, intelligence and spirit in the people of Augusta in 1732-'50, as falls to the lot of any equal number of people in the world.   (History of Augusta County, 1882, page 41)

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