1798 - Gerhard Friedrich Detering
Gerhard Friedrich Detering was born to Johan Heinrich Detering and Maria Gerdrut Kummig on October 1, 1798 in the tiny village of Wimmer, Amt Wittlage, in Kurfürstentum Hannover (the Electorate of Hanover), a part of the Heiliges Römisches Reich (Holy Roman Empire). Five years later, in 1803, the French armies of Napoleon Bonaparte occupied the Electorate of Hanover and the territory around Wimmer was put under French control for a decade.
1808 - Maria Klara Lahrmann
On January 17, 1808, nearly a decade after Gerhard's birth, Maria Klara Lahrmann was born to Franz Heinrich Lahrmann and Katharina Ilsabein Anding in Wimmer, Amt Wittlage, which was now a part of La Royaume de Westphalie (the Kingdom of Westphalia). The French kingdom was created in 1807 with Napoleon's younger brother Jérôme Bonaparte on the throne. It existed as a vassal state of the French Empire until 1813. So at her birth, Maria was a citizen of the French Empire. In 1813, when she was five years old, Kurfürstentum Hannover (the Electorate of Hanover) was restored, and in October of 1814 it was elevated to Königreich Hannover (the Kingdom of Hanover) by the Congress of Vienna.
The Lahrmann family tree has been traced back to 1402 in the region around Wimmer. From 1500 to about 1750, the name was spelled Larmann. The earliest ancestor was Johann von Laer und Lintorf (Johann from Laer and Lintorf). Lintorf was the site of the evangelical parish church for the tiny village of Wimmer. I assume the church in Lintorf was originally Roman Catholic, but became Protestant at some point during the Reformation. I haven't yet located the village of Laer.
Johann's son called himself Johann von Lar (Johann from Lar). His son, also named Johann, created the surname Larmann (essentially a "Lar Man") around 1500.
Today, Wimmer is a small farming village just east of the town of Bad Essen in Kreis Osnabrück, a district of Niedersachsen (Lower Saxony). Both towns lie northeast of the city of Osnabrück.
Wimmer is situated on the northern slope of a low wooded mountain range called the Wiehengebirge (the Wiehe mountains).
The mountain range stretches along a curving east-west axis beginning at the Weser River near Minden in the east and terminating in the vicinity of Osnabrück to the west. The highest elevation is 320 meters (1,049 feet).
Amt Wittlage was an administrative area centered around the town of the same name located near Burg Wittlage, a castle built in 1309 by Bishop Engelbert II of Osnabrück.
Until 1889, the castle was the location of the administrative office where records were kept for the surrounding area. The term Amt also refers to the area administered by such an office. The chief administrative officer of an Amt was a Vogt, a kind of county sheriff. The Vogt was usually a free peasant—not a serf—who worked for the local nobility.
Amt Wittlage eventually became Landkreis Wittlage. The terms Kreis and Landkreis refer to a rural district or county. Landkreis Wittlage had it’s administration in Castle Wittlage as well. In 1972, Landkreis Wittlage was combined with Landkreis Bersenbrück, Melle and Osnabrück to form the new Landkreis Osnabrück.
At the center of today's Kreis Osnabrück is the city of Osnabrück, which was founded around 780 by Karl der Große (Charlemagne). Sometime before 803, the city became the seat of Fürstbistum Osnabrück (the Prince-Bishopric of Osnabrück), which meant that it was ruled by a bischof (bishop) of the Roman Catholic church. Such principalities were common under the Holy Roman Empire.
In 1803, Osnabrück came under control of Königreich Hannover (the Kingdom of Hannover), which was then invaded by France. In 1810, Osnabrück became an official part of L'Empire des Français (the Empire of the French), and after 1815, again part of Königreich Hannover (the Kingdom of Hannover).
The town and region of Hannover is generally spelled Hanover in English. Königreich Hannover (the Kingdom of Hanover) had its origin in Fürstentum Calenberg (the Principality of Calenberg) which was created in 1432. Although it was called a principality, it was ruled by a duke, not a prince, and was a subdivision of the larger Herzogtum Braunschweig-Lüneburg (the Duchy of Brunswick-Lüneburg), a state of Heiliges Römisches Reich (the Holy Roman Empire).
In 1636, the capital of the Principality of Calenberg was moved from the town of Pattensen to the town of Hannover, and soon the principality also became known informally as Fürstentum Hannover.
In 1692, the Holy Roman Emperor, Leopold I, elevated Duke Ernest Augustus, ruler of the Principality of Calenberg, to the rank of Kurfürst or Elector of the Empire as a reward for military support he had given the emperor. The principality became known as Kurfürstentum Braunschweig-Lüneburg (the Electorate of Brunswick-Lüneburg) or, informally, Kurfürstentum Hannover (the Electorate of Hanover).
In 1714, the son of Duke Ernest Augustus and his wife, Sophia of Hannover, became King George I of Great Britain, establishing the British House of Hanover. Under the Act of Settlement in 1701, the English throne could only be held by a Protestant. Because Queen Anne, the daughter of James II, was dying, Sophia of Hannover, the nearest such relative, was designated as the next heir by a vote of Parliament. But Sophia died shortly before Anne's death, and her place was taken by her son, George.
In 1803, Kurfürstentum Hannover (the Electorate of Hanover) was occupied by France, which ruled over it in some form or another for the next ten years. From 1807 on, the Hanoverian territory became part of La Royaume de Westphalie (the Kingdom of Westphalia), ruled by Jérôme Bonaparte, Napoléon's younger brother. The Hanoverian army was dissolved, but many of the officers and soldiers went to England, where they formed the King's German Legion.
In 1813, Kurfürstentum Hannover (the Electorate of Hanover) was restored, and in October of 1814 it was elevated to Königreich Hannover (the Kingdom of Hanover) by the Congress of Vienna, in an attempt to balance the power of other German kingdoms. This was the situation in 1853 when Henriette Eleanora Detering was born in the town of Wimmer.
Hanover remained an independent kingdom from 1814 to 1866, when Prussian armies under Bismarck appropriated the territory and its wealth to continue the territorial expansion of Königreich Prueßen (the Kingdom of Prussia). Hanover became a province of Prussia, Provinz Hannover, and then in 1872, while remaining one of Prussia's four provinces, it became part of the newly-formed Deutsches Reich (German Empire).
In 1946, following World War II, Provinz Hannover was merged with the states of Oldenburg, Brunswick, and Schaumburg-Lippe into the new Bundesland (federated state) of Niedersachsen (Lower Saxony) with the city of Hanover as its capital.
marriage and children
On November 22, 1827, Gerhard Friedrich Detering married Maria Klara Lahrmann at the Evangelische Kirche Lintorf (the Evangelical church of Lintorf), in Lintorf, Amt Wittlage, Königreich Hannover.
Their eleven children were all born in House #5 in Wimmer:
Maria Klara (Lahrmann) Detering died in 1855 at about age 50 just two years after her last child was born. She left behind children ages 2, 7, 10, 13, 15, 18, 21, 24, and 26. It is likely that the eldest daughters Maria Clara and Maria Elsabein were married by that time.
emigration of children
Catharina Maria, then 18, assumed the care of her five younger siblings until she emigrated to the United States twelve years later. By this time, most of her charges had already emigrated to the United States, most in their twenties. After Catharina Maria's emigration in 1867, the youngest, Henriette Eleanora, was taken in by her older sister Maria Elsabein until Henriette's own emigration six years later.
It was in the mid-1860s that a number of the Detering children began emigrating to the United States. In 1862, Otto von Bismarck became premier of Königreich Prueßen (the Kingdom of Prussia) under König (King) Wilhelm I. Bismarck embarked on a plan to unify Germany under Prussian leadership by means of three deliberately planned wars over the next decade. In 1864, Prussia and Austria fought Denmark over control of the Duchies of Schleswig and Holstein. In 1866, Bismarck attacked Austria in the Austro-Prussian War, gaining additional territory. In 1867, Bismarck also became Chancellor of the Norddeutscher Bund (North German Confederation) which initiated the Franco-Prussian War in 1870. Under Bismarck's leadership, the Confederation overwhelmed France and the territories of Alsace and Lorraine were ceded to Prussia. On January 18, 1871, King Wilhelm of Prussia was proclaimed Kaiser (Emperor) of the new Deutsches Reich (German Empire) in the Château de Versailles outside of Paris.
During this period, all young men in Prussia and its allied German territories were required to serve in the Prussian army. The increasing militarism caused many of them to leave the German kingdoms and principalities for more peaceful realms. We know that Ernst Friedrich Detering (born 1840) served in the Prussian army from 1863 to 1865. By 1865, the Civil War had ended in the United States and prospects in the American Midwest looked promising to many German farmers, craftsman and laborers.
Caspar Heinrich was the first child to leave, settling in St. Louis in 1865 at age 24. In 1866, Ernst Friedrich (age 26) arrived in Cleveland where an aunt was living, but quickly moved to Plum Hill in Washinton County, Illinois. Catharina Maria (Mary) and Maria Clara (Clara) arrived in St. Louis in 1867. Mary was 30 and Clara was 19. They left behind Henriette who was just 14 at that time.
Mary Detering and Henry Ahlers
Although a family historical sketch states that Catharina Maria (known to the family as Marie or Mary) Detering emigrated to the United States in 1869, a ship's manifest shows her arriving in 1867 with her sister Clara. Mary Detering married Henry Ahlers in St. Louis, Missouri on September 23, 1868. The marriage record lists their names as Catharine Detering and Henrich Ahlers.
The surname Ahlers appears in the same church records as the Detering family in Lintorf. So perhaps they knew each other before emigrating.
Their children were:
Clara Detering and Diedrich Rixmann
Maria Clara (Clara) Detering emigrated to the United States with her sister Catharina Maria in 1867 and settled in Hoyleton in Washington County, Illinois, where she married Diedrich W. Rixmann sometime about 1875. Diedrich had been born on February 12, 1839 in Fürstenau, Kreis Osnabrück, Königreich Hannover to Freidrich and Maria Rixmann. He emigrated to the United States with his parents in 1868, arriving in New York, and then traveling to Hoyleton.
In 1880, Clara and Diedrich Rixmann. a bricklayer, were living in the village of Hoyleton with four children:
Three more children were added to the family over the next decade.
Ernst Detering and Anna Renken
Ernst Friedrich Detering served in the Prussian military from 1863 to 1865. The following year, he left Germany and emigrated to the United States. After a brief visit with an aunt in Cleveland, he moved to Washington County, Illinois whare he purchased a farm near Plum Hill. He married Anna Katherina Renken in August 1867. Their first child, Henry, died in infancy as did five other siblings. Surviving children included:
Caspar Detering and Marie Josephine
At age 24, Caspar Heinrich Detering emigrated to the United States, arriving in New York on September 25, 1865. He settled in St. Louis, Missouri where he soon Anglicized his name to Casper Henry Detering.
In 1872, Casper Detering was advised by his doctor to take a sea voyage for his health. He sailed from New York to Bremen, Germany on a six week voyage. Returning to Wimmer in Hannover (now a province of Prussia), Casper persuaded his youngest sister Henriette (age 20) to return to St. Louis with him. They left Germany on September 15, 1873 and arrived in New York on October 10th.
Seven years later, the 1880 census lists Casper "Deitering" as a clerk living in the household of a merchant named Christian Vonder Ahe in St. Louis.
About a year later, Casper married Marie Josephine (maiden name unknown). Marie was born in Austria on July 14, 1859 and emigrated to the United States in 1879.
In 1910, Casper and Marie were living in St. Louis with their five children:
According to census records, Casper was 69 years old and retired in 1910. He died five years later on July 13, 1915. His wife Marie died six years later on June 14, 1921.
short sketch of Henriette Eleanora Detering
Henriette Detering had emigrated to the United States in 1873 at the urging of her brother Casper. She eventually married Ludwig (Louis) Karl Heinrich Struckmeyer in Hoyleton, Illinois. (See Louis Struckmeyer and Henriette Detering)
Their son, Dr. Charles W. Struckmeyer wrote this short piece about his mother. He titled it "A Short Sketch of Grandma Struckmeyer and Her Linen."
Henriette Eleanora Detering and Louis Struckmeyer
Henriette Eleanora Detering left Germany on September 15, 1873 and arrived in New York on October 10th. She first settled in St. Louis, Missouri with Marie Ahlers, the sister who had raised her in Wimmer. Some time later she traveled to Hoyleton, Illinois to visit her sister Clara Rixmann.
In Hoyleton, she met Louis Struckmeyer, a wagonmaker and carpenter who was the son of Karl Struckmeier and Anna Greimann.
Henriette Detering married Louis Struckmeyer on April 26, 1877 at Evangelische Zions Gemeinde (Evangelical Zion Congregation). (See Louis Struckmeyer and Henriette Detering)
Gerhard Friedrich and Maria Klara (Lahrmann) Detering died in House # 5 in Wimmer, Amt Wittlage, Königreich Hannover. Maria Klara had died on November 6, 1855, when her daughter Henriette was two years old, but to date we have no record of Gerhard's death. (If he died after 1866, Hannover would have then been a province of Königreich Preußen).