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  • ID: I76
  • Name: Peter HITT
  • Surname: Hitt
  • Given Name: Peter
  • Sex: M
  • Birth: 1680/1683 in Kaan-Marienborn, Nassau-Siegen, Westphalia, Germany
  • Death: 27 Jul 1772 in Germantown, Fauquier, Va.
  • Burial: Germantown,Fauquier,Va., Old Germantown Cem.
  • _UID: 764F2F907B41D511BD9EBDC3D7961731B651
  • Note:
    from Germanna Journal on 9-5-2011 by John Blankenbaker and Suzanne Matson:
    The assumption that Peter Hitt of the First Germanna Colony is the same person as the
    Peter Heite of Nassau-Siegen who married Maria Liessbeth (Elizabeth) Freudenberg has dominated
    Germanna thinking about the Hitt family for many years. This assumption is based on the idea that all
    individuals in the First Germanna Colony came from the same area of Germany. Substantial evidence,
    however, indicates that Peter Hitt and Peter Heite are two distinct individuals.
    The individual identified as Peter Hitt was unquestionably a German immigrant to colonial
    Virginia as is attested by his German name and his associations. He petitioned for head rights
    under the colonial Virginia head right system for his wife, Elisabeth, and himself, as did several other
    Germans who came to be known as the First Germanna Colony. This Peter Hitt indicated his arrival
    in Virginia as occurring in 1714 in his head right application.1 The same Peter Hitt died in 1772 in
    Virginia leaving a will naming his wife, Elizabeth, and their six children. 2 Documentation about this
    Peter Hitt admits of relative certainty as to this data.
    Peter Heite of Nassau-Siegen is also a German. While no birth record has been found for
    him, there is documentary evidence that his father was Jacob Heite of Rehbach east of Siegen, near
    Kaan, Germany3. Peter Heite married Maria Liessbeth Freudenberg at Siegen on Epiphany Sunday
    in 17074. This Peter Heite appears in the Siegen church records only in this 1707 marriage record.
    Assuming that Peter Hitt and Peter Heite were the same individual, Dr. B.C. Holtzclaw speculated
    that Peter Heite?s wife Liessbeth died shortly after their arrival in 1714 and that Peter Hitt remarried
    an Elizabeth Otterbach. But there is no clear evidence to support Dr. Holtzclaw?s supposition.
    Dr. Holtzclaw does reference genealogical and marriage records for Peter Heite in his book Ancestry
    and Descendants of the Nassau-Siegen Immigrants to Virginia 1714-1750. See also his Germanna Record
    One regarding the Hitt, Martin, and Weaver families.
    There is evidence that the two men are distinct based on additional information available today
    that perhaps was not available to earlier authors, including Dr. Holtzclaw.
    Two excellent sources of published information where we find the names of many Germans who
    immigrated to England through Rotterdam are Even More Palatine Families, volume 3 by Henry Z
    Jones, Jr. & Lewis Bunker Rohrbach and Early Eighteenth Century Palatine Emigration by Walter Allen
    Knittle.5,6 We have examined these sources and others with our findings to follow.
    Knittle alphabetized lists whereas Jones and Rohrbach do not. Although Knittle?s alphabetized
    lists make it much easier to locate surnames of interest, it is harder to locate groupings of individuals
    from a particular area. Jones and Rohrbach present the lists of people as they occur which assists in
    the possible identification of others from the same area in Germany.
    Of the Palatines (Germans) who left Rotterdam in 1709, the Dutch made lists of names but their
    list for the first group does not survive. There is an English list of the first party.7 Hank Jones has read the original list and he reports that one of the names is Peter Heyde, 28, with a wife and a son,
    1½. This man was Reformed in religion and a joiner (cabinetmaker). The spelling and the ages would
    fit excellently to the Peter Heite who is usually discussed in the Germanna histories.
    Also, in 1709, the sixth departing party of Germans (the Germans departed in separate parties at
    different times, hence the numerical designations of the party) from Rotterdam for London included
    a Peeter Heÿdee, his wife, and child. Again this is very compatible with a marriage of Peter Heite in
    1707. The sixth party also included several other names from the Siegen region, an important clue.
    The list of departing Germans was made by the Dutch in Rotterdam and reflects their spelling of the
    German names. Thus there are two recorded departures in 1709 of men who could be Peter Heide.
    So many Germans left their homes for the New World that Queen Anne and her government
    were compelled to provide some relief to these. The sheer numbers of people arriving at one time
    caused Queen Anne to look for ways to employ so many Germans. These people had no way to support themselves initially and assistance in the form of food was provided by the government and by charitable donations. For the longer term, some of these Germans were sent to Ireland, some to New York, and some to North Carolina in 1710. Others were distributed in England and Catholics were returned to Germany.
    The New York subsistence lists (the subsistence list was actually a list of Palatine debtors to
    the British government who were provided with assistance in either New York City or in the Hudson
    River settlements) includes the name of Peter Hayd along the Hudson River.8 Knittle reports that in
    1710 the family had two adults and two children. In the 1712 list, there is only one child. There are
    entries for distinct times that assistance was given. The first and sixth are given in Knittle, p.282ff,
    both of which related to Peter Hayd. However, Hank Jones associates this Peter Hayd with a German
    from Baumholder though in discussing Peter Hayd, he mentions the German, Peter Heyde who
    left in the first party from Rotterdam and says that there may be some confusion. Peter Hayd is
    known to have married Anna Catharina in Germany according to Jones.
    Another source is the Simmendinger Register made about 1717 by Ulrich Simmendinger who,
    with his wife, had arrived in 1710 as one of the Palatines. This register provides the names of Germans
    living along the Hudson about 1716 and distinctly includes Peter Heyd, his wife Maria Elisabeth,
    and one child. This family lived in the community known as Becksmanland (as Simmendinger
    called it).9
    There are two departures from Germany in 1709 who could be Peter Heide. In 1716, Peter
    Heyd [Heide?] and wife Maria Elizabeth are living along the Hudson River. When coupled with the
    name of his wife, Maria Elizabeth, in the 1707 marriage record and in 1716 in the Simmendinger Register, combined with the records from Rotterdam and London, the conclusion is that the Peter Hitt
    of the Germanna First Colony in Virginia cannot be the Peter Heide of Nassau-Siegen who seems to
    be living along the Hudson River in 1716. Dr. Holtzclaw himself admitted that he could find no
    other Peter Hitt/Heite in Siegen. The laws of physics don?t allow the same person to be in two separate
    places at the same time so the longstanding assumption that Peter Hitt and Peter Heite are the
    same person should be considered incorrect.
    As to when Peter Hitt of the Germanna First Colony actually left Germany, again there is no
    conclusive evidence. He could have been one of the 1709 departees who lived in Ireland or England
    for a few years before crossing the Atlantic. Perhaps Peter Hitt saw that a way of going on to the
    New World was to join the Siegen group. This would not be so unusual as we have the example of the Urban Tanner family who left Germany in 1709 but did not arrive in Virginia until 1720 after living
    for a while in Ireland.
    The clustering of family units is an important tool to help determine what area in Germany a
    particular family is likely to have emigrated from. To judge by the locations today of the twenty-odd
    family units in Germany named Hitt (as found in the phone book), Peter Hitt of the Germanna First
    Colony most likely came from the modern German state of Baden-Württemberg. A majority of the
    German families named Hitt are found here. Three Hitt families are found in North Rhine-Westphalia
    but not close to Siegen and another three live in Bavaria or Berlin. None of the areas in Germany with
    Hitt family histories is close to the Siegen area. Just because Peter Hitt was in the First Germanna
    Colony does not mean he came from the Siegen area. The evidence suggests otherwise.
    No other evidence of Peter Hitt being from Siegen has been adduced and all the objective data
    suggests that Peter Hitt was more likely from Baden-Württemberg. A more conclusive piece of evidence would be a comparison of the DNA of male Germanna Hitts in America with the DNA of
    male Hitts and Heides in Germany. This would go a long way to bringing strong evidence to the issue.
    Peter Hitt of the Germanna First Colony is not the Peter Heite who settled in the Hudson
    River settlements of New York. Also, the Germanna Peter Hitt is unlikely to be from Siegen and
    much more likely to be from Baden-Württemberg. The German immigration through London is a
    fascinating part of the Germanna story as well as other German immigration to different venues in America. The intriguing history of the Hitt family continues to offer opportunities for more research and understanding of our history.
    The Anderson Daily Intelligencer. (Anderson, SC)
    1914-1917, January 31, 1914, Image 1 provided by
    the University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC.
    Persistent link: http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/
    lccn/sn93067669/1014-01-31/ed-1/seq-1/
    Suzanne C. Matson, a Germanna
    member and noted Germanna researcher,
    was elected to serve as Corresponding Secretary
    of the North Carolina Society
    Daughters of the American Revolution
    (NCSDAR) 2009-2012. Suzanne is a Genealogy
    Consultant and as such helps with
    solutions to some of the thornier problems
    relating to "proving the line" for prospective
    members. She attends several genealogical
    conferences every year such as the
    National Genealogical

    [Fauquier Co., Deed Bk 4] p. 178-180 22 April 1771 B & S [Bargain & Sale] Bet. Peter Hitt, Jacob Wever [sic], Peter Kemper of Fauq. and Harman Fishback of Culp. Co. of one part and Tilman Martin .. 24 pds.... lot ... cont. 100 A. whereon Tilman Martin now lives .. binding on land of Charles Carter of Lan[caster] Co. and Jeremiah Darnall .. being one of the lotts of land in the German Town formerly set apart for a German glebe .. signed Peter (X) Hitt, Jacob Wever, Herman Fishback, Peter Kamper. Wit: Thomas Marshall, Tilman Wever, Joseph Martin, Josiah Holtzclaw. Rec: 24 June 1771, prov. by o[ath] of Tilman Wever, Joseph Martin & Josiah Holtzclaw [John K. Gott, Fauquier County, Virginia deeds 1759-1778 [Bowie, MD: Heritage Books, 1998], p. 114) Glebe 1 definition: a piece of church lnad forming part or all of a benefice Benefice 2nd definition an endowed church office providing a living for a vicar, rector, etc. 3rd definition its income Courtesy of Webster's New Wolrd Dictionary, Third College Edition Interesting!!!! E.W.Wallace

    It was Russell Hitt and Mary Doyle Johnson who are the two Hitts on the trip in 2007. That was the year that Horst Schneider located the original plat for the Rehbach farm overlooking the town of Kaan Marienborn. Horst, who is a retired govt. employee in the information technology saved this document from the shredder after it was digitized. Horst presented the plat to Russell who now has it framed and on the wall behind his desk at his office. As you might imagine it was quite an emotional moment for both Russell and Mary. Rehbach was the farm of Peter Hitt's mother-in-law's family and there is a "denkmal" (monument) on the property to the ancestor of the mother-in-law who is credited with initiating the Hauberg system of forest management still in use today. The settlers list you clipped below is out of kilter. The Eisern on the line with Heide belongs to the person above Heide in the list. Peter and his wife were both from Kaan Marienborn. Thom Faircloth

    The Family History Library in Salt Lake City has a multitude [a good part of the first fllor at that Library] of family histories. Many of them have been filmed. I did a Surname search of the Library catalog [www.familysearch.org - and click on Library] for the Hitt family and found this promising family history, which the catalog says is about 1100 pages--and it has been filmed. Here is a description [the formatting may not transfer well to the internet] so do the search yourself--remember Surname and then Hitt. There are quite a few other histories about that family--and related families. Here is the one I chose to see the details . (By the way, Fauquier Co. was not formed until 1759--try Prince William Co., where some of the records are missing.) _Littlefield, Barbara Jeanne Grim_ (= Littlefield,+Barbara+Jeanne+Grim) , 1945- (Main Author) Notes Peter Hitt (ca. 1683-1772) was probably born in Germany and died in Germantown, Virginia. According to Siegerländer Perönlichkeiten-und Geschlechter- Lexikon, Peter Heide was the son of Jacob Heide of Rebhach farm near Marienborn; Peter emigrated in 1714 from Tupbach to Virginia and called himself Hitt. He married Elizabeth (d. ca. 1773) possibly in England or aboard ship to America. One of their children, Herman Hitt (1721-1820), was born, raised and buried in Germantown, Essex County (now Fauquier County), Virginia. In 1745, he married Mary Weaver (d. 1793). They had twelve children, all born in Faurquier County, Virginia. Their 1st was born in 1746, their last in 1770. The nine generations of descendants traced include Alden, Emmert, Glascock, Grim, Hershey, Huff, Newcomer, Perkins, Rector, Reynolds, Rowland, Wachtel and related lines.
    The information that we have at the Foundation is that Peter Hitt's village was Rehbach, near Kaan Marienborn. When we were in Germany last year, we went there for the first time because 2 Hitt descendants were on the tour--the tour is conducted according to the various families that are represented by the travelers. One of the Foundation Trustees, Horst Schneider, presented Russell Hitt with some documents having to do with the land on which Peter Hitt lived on in Rehbach. I will ask Russell exactly what they were, I think at least one of the documents was a map showing his land. There is no house left on the land of Peter Hitt, just farmland, but it's a beautiful place. It's also not far from the villages of the other members of the First Colony. Barb Price
    I wonder if anyone has researched the Catholic records from Rehbach. There may be some information that would clarify some of the inconsistencies in the Hitt genealogy. I reread BCH's Hitt information-there isn't very much and I feel that there is alot of information missing. And BCH doesn't all seem too sure about the relationships among the Hitts. Is anyone working on a Hitt book? The name inconsistency really bothers me. I feel perhaps there are errors on the German side perhaps due to records not being available. Suzanne
    My thought is that the Germanna Hitt family could really be a Hitt family and not a Heide/Heite family. Perhaps they left also in 1709 and spent a few years in Ireland or England as many of the 1709 Germans did. Many of these early Germans did not want to live in Ireland or England but wanted to go to the New World. Perhaps a Hitt family was in London in 1713 looking for a way to get to America. They may have encountered the Nassau-Siegen people and joined the group. So the question is: "Is the original name of the Germanna Hitts actually Hitt or Heide or even another name.?" It would seem to me that a DNA study of known Germanna Hitts (in the male line) could be compared to the DNA of German Hitts and Heide/Heite. This might help answer the question of the original name of the Germanna Hitts. My list of the 25 Hitt households in Germany is a few years old being taken from a telephone book. However, the majority of the addresses are probably still valid (I did write to one and received an answer.) If anyone wishes to pursue this question, I will give them my list. -- John.Blankenbaker@comcast.net

    It was requested that I give a time line for the First Colony. Here is my estimate: Late spring of 1713: the people left Nassau-Siegen, apparently not in a single group. Summer of 1713: the people arrived in London. January 1714: they left for Virginia on a unknown ship. Late March 1714: Spotswood finds out, for the first time, that Germans are coming. April 1714: they arrived in Virginia. 1716: they started mining operations at the silver mine. 1718, early in the year: they were instructed to search for iron. During 1718: the search for iron continued and a statement in a courthouse says they worked until December of 1718 at mining and quarrying. Also during the year they made their commitment to buy land at "Germantown." By December of 1718, Spotswood says he spent about 60 pounds on the endeavor so there was no iron furnace. January 1719: they moved to Germantown. Pastor Haeger may not have moved at this time. By this time they had completed the four years of service they committed themselves to in London. Someone else built the iron furnace after they had left. -- John.Blankenbaker@comcast.net

    John Blankenbaker's thoughts on story of the immigrants being imported as miners:
    Alexander Spotswood was in contact with Nathaniel Blakiston because AS was trying to get the royal share of gold and silver mines determined. When Graffenried returned to Europe, he had just visited with AS. It appears that AS told Graffenried to look up Blakiston. One reason was that AS and Graffenried each were obtaining an interest in the purported silver mine.When Graffenried arrived in London, he fell in contact with the Germans probably through Albrecht. Graffenried, being broke, advised the Germans to go back to Germany. He said the Germans were an embarrassment to him because he had not invited all of them to come on. Apparently G contacted B to see if he could help. B, being aware that AS might be needing miners, concocted the deal whereby the Germans pooled their money and the balance of 150 pounds would be paid by AS. As has been pointed out, AS knew nothing about this arrangement. When he did learn (about the time the Germans were arriving in Virginia), he told B that he thought B must be hopeful of getting the royal share of silver and gold mines approved or else B would not have sent the Germans along. So much for the iron mining It was not until three and years later that the Germans started searching for iron. Probably Graffenried contacted Albrecht and learned about the Germans. Graffenried looked up Blakiston and told him the situation. Spotswood's letters to Blakiston had probably mentioned Graffenried so Blakiston knew who Graffenried was. Following from John Blankenbaker on 11-4-2008:
    The economic state of the Siegerland at the time the First Germanna Colony left was chaotic and depressed. This was brought out by the late Heinz Prinz in his talk to the Germanna Foundation at their 2002 Reunion. His remarks were printed in the Germanna Foundation 2002 Winter Newsletter and in Beyond Germanna (vol. 14, n.2, p. 855). Though the Siegerland had been an economically important region in "Germany" largely due to the iron industry, the region had become stagnant in the early eighteenth century. Largely this was the result of dividing the Nassau-Orange principality into two regions with one headed by a Protestant and the other by a Catholic. Both used Siegen as their capital. The Catholic prince, William Hyazinth, of the Upper Castle claimed to be the heir to the King of England (after the death of his cousin King William III). In pursuit of this he visited the monarchs of other countries in the hope of gaining recognition. To support him, taxes were raised on his subjects. Adolf, the Protestant prince, was rebuilding the Lower Castle in Siegen and he found it necessary to increase taxes on his subjects. The severest burden in the region though arose from the ban of delivery of charcoal to the Protestant areas in the Siegerland which brought the iron working to a halt due to the lack of this vital ingredient for the smelting furnaces and forges. In addition, the sale of iron products was banned. The miners, iron workers, and their families were particularly affected by these developments and thus found themselves falling into a deep state of misery. On December 6, 1706, the subjects of the district of Weidenau (in the Catholic area) rebelled agai!nst Hyazinth while he was in Vienna attempting to obtain recognition as the heir to the principality of Orange in the southern part of France. On his return Prince William Hyazinth seized Friedrich Flender of Weidenau and convicted him without a trial and then beheaded him. Josef I, the Holy Roman Emperor, intervened and turned the administration of the Siegerland region over to the Archbishop of Cologne.This placed Siegerland under the rule of the Jesuits and living conditions did not improved in the Protestant region. On May 26, 1712, just one year before the emigration of the first Germanna Colonists, the situation became more violent when the imperial guards of the Upper Castle clashed with those of the Lower Castle resulting the death of several civilians and soldiers. Prince Adolf sought support from the King of Prussia and the Counts of Hesse. In summary, at the beginning of the 18th century, the living conditions of the miners and iron workers in the Siegerland became very bad as their troubles overflowed to all of the residents of the regions. The unemployment rate went up very sharply. It is not difficult to understand why some of the inhabitants of the Siegerland decided to leave their homeland in view of the living conditions there at the time. When Johann Justus Albrecht appeared on the scene seeking miners to the British colonies in North America, this represented an employment opportunity. Albrecht's main qualification for hiring was a willingness on the part of the workers to go and not a skill test. -- John.Blankenbaker@comcast.net Peter Hitt (ca. 1683-1772) was probably born in Germany and died in Germantown, Virginia. According to Siegerländer Perönlichkeiten-und Geschlechter- Lexikon, Peter Heide was the son of Jacob Heide of Rebhach farm near Marienborn; Peter emigrated in 1714 from Tupbach to Virginia and called himself Hitt. He married Elizabeth (d. ca. 1773) possibly in England or aboard ship to America. One of their children, Herman Hitt (1721-1820), was born, raised and buried in Germantown, Essex County (now Fauquier County), Virginia. In 1745, he married Mary Weaver (d. 1793). They had twelve children, all born in Faurquier County, Virginia. Their 1st was born in 1746, their last in 1770. The nine generations of descendants traced include Alden, Emmert, Glascock, Grim, Hershey, Huff, Newcomer, Perkins, Rector, Reynolds, Rowland, Wachtel and related lines.

    Page 122 "Germantown" ------------------In this frame of mind they were approached by an agent of the proprietors of the Northern Neck and induced to make entry for a tract of land east of the new Elk Marsh settlement in what was afterward Fauquier, but was then Stafford county. A warrant was issued in the summer of 1718 for 1805 acres lying on both side of Licking run, to "Jacob HOLTZCLAW, John HOFFMAN, John FISHBACK, Peter HITT, Harman FISHBACK, Tilman WEAVER, John SPILLMAN and several other Germans." Ofthe latter were John KEMPER, John Joseph MARTIN, Joseph COONS and Jacob RECTOR.-------------------------------- Page 123 ------------------------The bill filed in Fauquier County Court, September 27, 1759, in SPILLMAN v. GENT. (Minutes, 1759-63) states that the twelve Germans entered into an agreement with each other that each should bear equally the expense of acquiring title to this tract; that the land should be divided into twelve parts of 150 acres each, which should be distributed by lot; that HOFFMAN, FISHBACK and HOLTZCLAW, acting as trustees----------------- Page 127 ------------------------------"(April) ninth, Germantown, Virginia. It is like a village in Germany where the houses are far apart. It is situated along a little creek, Lucken (Licking) Run. They are from the Siegen District and are all Reformed people. They live about ten miles fro the Little Fork of the Ripphanning (Rappahannock). They have as their lay reader the old Mr. HOLTZKLO (Jacob HOLTZCLAW who receives from each family thirty pounds of tobacco as his salary. There is a church and a school house." Later in the same year the place was visited by Bishop SPANGENBERG, another Moravian, whos says: "Toward evening we came to Licken Run, or Germantown. We stayed with an old friend by the name of HOLTZKLO. The village is occupied by Reformer miners from Nassau Siegen. They live very quietly together and are nice people". Page 128 ---------------Jacob HOLTZCLAW, for instance, in 1725, took a grant on Broad Run;------------ Page 130 (16) Wills of the founders of Germantown were proved as follows: -------------Jacob HOLTZCLAW, February 29, 1760;--------------------------


    Urban Tanner 5 After E. W. Wallace so kindly gave us some reference material that might show the Tanners in Ireland, let me add that one must be lenient with regards to spelling. Hank Jones noted the poor spelling of the German names by the Irish. He suggested that Damur or Damus might be two of the spellings to be found there. When the switch from Urban to Robert was made is unknown. When Andrew Kerker was keeping the books for the German Lutheran Church in the Robinson River Valley in 1733 he made an entry which read: "By paid Urban Tanner for travelling to Wmsburgh about Church business." The amount was 12 shillings. I would think that this indicated an above average level of education on Tanner's part. So far as I know, this is the only time that the name Urban is used in Virginia. I did get to the LDS FHC again and was able to copy out about 30 pages of early baptisms. Having more time at home to study the baptismal records of Anna Catharina, I discovered a phrase which concluded the record which I had overlooked. These words said that the baptism did not occur in the church at Westhofen but in a chapel which the pastor at Westhofen also served. I have written to Germany seeking a clarification. For the present, I would continue to identify Urban Danner with Westhofen as his last place of residence in Germany. One thing that this Danner/Tanner series of records tells us that the process of emigrating was sometimes more complicated than we had originally thought. We knew already that some of the people who left in 1717 did not make it to Virginia that year but took a few years. Now we have a documented case where the trip took eleven years. There is one record which shows that many people left the Nassau region in 1709. The sixth party from Rotterdam to London in 1709 is headed by Johan Fredrik Heger (remember these names are written by the Dutch). Buried in the list is Peeter Heidee and wife and child. Surrounding this name are many names from the Nassau region. [In the spelling of Heidee, the Dutch used an umlauted "y" in place of the "i" that I used.] For many years, I have been insisting that the Germanna historians have been overlooking the significance of the 1709 emigration from Germany. And the historians have giving the wrong reasons for the emigration. John Blankenbaker johblank@pipeline.com

    This article was posted the the American-Revolution-L list--serve about our John Blankenbaker. Tuesday, July 4, 2006 Notes helpful to all German researchers By James M. Beidler Lebanon Daily News 718 Poplar Street . Lebanon, PA 17042 It's been said that just like politics, "all genealogy is local." That's true to the extent that every community is a different makeup of people - which means in turn that the records about and methodologies to find those people as ancestors will also be different. But it doesn't mean that a lot can't be learned from studying another geographic area, especially when you have the chance to pick the brain of another area's expert. Such an expert is John Blankenbaker of Chadds Ford, who in his working life is credited by many with the creation of the first personal computer in 1971. Blankenbaker has contributed much to the knowledge base about the so-called Germanna colonies of early 18th century Virginia. The first group of Germans in 1714 had been recruited from the Siegen area (part of the present-day German state of North Rhine-Westphalia) to mine silver. "The very first Germans lived in a fort on the Virginia frontier called Germanna, a word coined from German and Queen Anne," Blankenbaker said. "Later they developed iron mines for Lt. Gov. Alexander Spotswood in Virginia." A second group of Germans in 1717, mainly from several villages southeast of Heidelberg, had intended to go to Pennsylvania, but the ship captain took them instead to Virginia, where they became servants of Spotswood to develop his extensive land holdings. "The evidence suggests strongly that Spotswood and the captain worked together to bring, unwittingly, the Germans to Virginia," Blankenbaker said. The Germans in the second group were Lutherans, and they built the church in Madison County that is now the oldest Lutheran church building in America. The records of this church, in German, are outstanding though not complete. "I have, with assistance, transcribed these and published them," Blankenbaker said. "They show the powerful inferences that can be drawn from associations." Blankenbaker has written more than 2,300 short notes since the late 1990s to help newcomers and old timers understand their history and genealogy better. He doesn't call himself a "blogger," but that's essentially what his notes are. The notes cover things he's learned relating to Germanna or Germans in general. Along with the notes on the Internet are photographs of a couple dozen German villages that relate to the Germanna colonies. All in all, Blankenbaker's notes give an excellent commentary on the Germans in Virginia - often applicable to other Germans who came to America. Soon after retirement, Blankenbaker found that he was descended from the group of Germans (some of whom had an earlier history in Austria and Switzerland) who came to Virginia in 1717. "Because their emigration had official overtones, there are many records pertaining to these people, and their interesting history has become a focus of my attention," Blankenbaker said. A RootsWeb discussion group furthers discussions on the Internet about Germanna, and Blankenbaker began writing the notes to promote this discussion group. To access Blankenbaker's notes, go to the Web site . At the bottom of this Web page is a link "For information about other Germanna sources." Clicking on this link will bring you to a link to Blankenbaker's notes on Germanna History. Clicking of this link brings up the first 25 notes as well as links to the rest. ------ Beidler is a freelance writer and lecturer on genealogy. Contact him either at Box 270, Lebanon, PA 17042, or by e-mail to james@beidler.us . Abstracts of Wills, Administrations, and Marriages of Fauquier Co Virginia, 1759-1800 by J. Estelle Stewart King, 1986 Peter Hitt 23 March, 1772 27 July 1772 Wife, Elizabeth Hitt, to have estate during her lifetime. Slaves to sons; John, Joseph and Peter Hitt. Daughter, Mary Rector, 100 acres of land. To Son, Henry Hitt, 100 pounds of curr. money. Children: John, Joseph, Harmon, Peter and Mary. Exrs; Sons Harmon and Joseph. Wit; Harman Rector, Joseph Taylor, John Morgan. [page 200, Will Book 1] Fauquier Co VA Rent Roll, 1770 Harmon Hitt 500 John Hitt 216 John Hitt Jr. 53 Joseph Hitt 214 Peter Hitt Sr. 200 Peter Hitt Jr. 275 *** On the internet, I found "Harmon Hitt Notes": [The names below do not correspond with the will of the father above listed?] Germanna Records, # 1, Patriotic Service in Virginia during Rev War according to D.A.R. index according to B. Littlefield. He is listed in 1761 on the Roster of Capt. William Edmonds Co of Virginia Troops in the French & Indian War. On 07-24-1797, he appointed his sons, Benjamin and Samuel Hitt, as his attorney's to divide his property among his children and he and his wife went to live with son, Benjamin Hitt. S.A.R. # 138355- Derek Morton gives same dates. Refers to D.A.R. # 429161. I based this man's son, Peter Hitt III.[said by person who posted this but is unnamed]According to Earl Hitt, he died at the home of his son, Benjamin Hitt, in Rectortown. He was buried on the homestead in Rectortown. Died in his chair according to Wanda Glover -as a reference. Harmon Hitt was deeded 200 acres of land by his brother, Henry Hitt, on 10-18-1764. Henry moved to S.C. about this time or a little earlier. Two late descendants are Robert Owens Hitt [S.A.R. # 158116] and Jason Richard Hitt [S.A.R. # 158117] of Florida. ** I have the book "Fauquier Co Virginia Deeds 1759-1778 " compiled by the late John K. Gott, 1988 Index lists the following Hitt's Alice, Elisha, Eve, Harman, Henry, John, Joseph, Mary, Nath'l, and Peter. There is no Benjamin nor Samuel Hitt listed? This is not my family but a curiosity to me, and possibly others of interest to this family. Virginia L. (Ginny) Keefer in LasVegas"
    In our archives we have a hand written and illuminated birth record of the births of 5 generations of the Peter Hitt Jr. family. The booklet is in 5 different handwritings and spans the years 1723 to 18 30. Included in the book are the births and mother's names of all the slaves of Peter Hitt Jr. and his descendants for those five generations. Germanna
    At 01:37 PM 9/9/2004, Suzanne Matson wrote: >So do you think the 1714 Germans searched for silver? I doubt they did in the first two years. About March of 1716 they started "mining and quarrying" and I interpret this as a search for silver initially. But by the late summer and fall of that year (during the expedition over the mountains), it seems there was no silver. > Spotswood stated they >did not work for him for two years Correct, probably up to March of 1716 when the "mining and quarrying" started. > and it seems they moved away probably early in 1719. Albrecht made no claim for the "mining and quarrying" going beyond December of 1718. The Germans had taken out their Germantown land in the summer of 1718. Their four years of work to which they had agreed in London were up in 1718. >leaving them a time frame of approximately two years that they may have >worked for Spotswood. Perhaps two and a half years. It was must be remembered that Spotswood told London that each German household was to work 12 days per year for him to pay the rent on their house. They had to do their own farming so the labor for Spotswood was low key. > It seems Spotswood was trying to position himself to >be ready to start mining should permission be granted with a side benefit of >having Germans as a barrier between the Indians and the British. This was his initial thought for phase one of his retirement plan. Also by having the Germans in the fort to protect the English, he got the colony to pay for their housing. >We've been told they settled on the large tract of 1805 acres acquired from >Lord Fairfax which wasn't granted until Aug 1724. Were they living there >before 1724? Yes, the delay was due to the death of Lady Fairfax after the 1718 commitment but before the property passed to her heir, Lord Fairfax. So the Germans had probably lived on the land for five years before they got the title to the land. John Blankenbaker
    John Blankenbaker shows shows 6th party arriving in London from Rotterdam in 1709 as Peeter Heydee and wife and child.
    Queen Anne of England was involved in the War of the Spanish Succession (called Queen Anne's War in the colonies) against France to prevent the union of France and Spain after the death of Spanish King Charles II. She was a Protestant who felt sorrow for the persecutions of the German Protestants on the west bank of the Rhine River (Palatines) by the Catholic King Louis XIV, who had designs on the area and disliked the Protestants. She helped a group to come to America in 1708. More than 2,000 arrived in New York in 1710 and settled along the Hudson and Mohawk Rivers. This probably accounts for the huge influx that John mentioned in his account. The following account was taken from But this one was just one of two that the residents of the Palatinate would endure until 1697. The War of the Palatinate or War of The League of Augsburg, began in 1688 when Louis XIV laid claim to The Palatinate. Ultimately, havoc ruled and the Palatines were devastated until the wars drew to a close in 1697. Though the Palatines had sustained unspeakable hardships, there was more yet to come - specifically the War of the Spanish Succession that began in 1702 and lasted until 1713. To make matters even worse, the winter of 1708-1709 was extremely severe, destroying many of the lush vineyards of the region. Therefore, the time was ripe for an exodus from Germany. Beginning with an invitation from Queen Anne in the spring of 1709, approximately 7,000 Palatines sailed down the Rhine to Rotterdam - a trip that took from 4 to 6 weeks with tolls and fees demanded by authorities of the territories along the way. Rotterdam, in turn, would be the main "distribution point" for all emigrants bound for America by a special situation worked out by William Penn. Soon overflowing with approximately 1,000 Palatines per week, Rotterdam was overcome. While some took a direct route to America, others were making the transit via England. However, overcome there too, the British government issued a Royal proclamation in German that all arriving after October 1709 would be sent back to Germany. Despite the action, London had swelled with 32,000 former Palatines by November 1709. Most were forced to winter over in England until arrangements could be made for transportation to America. Gerry Parchman In a message dated 7/21/03 12:50:51 AM Eastern Daylight Time,
    kinseek@starband.net writes:

    << Andreas was excellent with his presentation on the background that led to
    the Siegerlanders migration to Germanna >>

    Thank you for the "excellent" - but I am not at all sure that I made my
    points clear and convincing enough. Since the scheduling and waiting irritated me
    and did not leave me the time to conclude my talk, and since so many people
    asked me later to hear the rest of the story, I take the chance to repeat some
    main points and add a few more [albeit without the vain hope that the Germanna
    Foundation will correct anything on their website.]
    1) The man ultimately responsible for the connection between Virginia and the
    Siegerland is the Swiss explorer Franz Ludwig Michel (Francis Lewis Mitchel).
    Some ten years before Spotswood he had repeatedly traversed the Shenandoah
    Valley[s], also in search of minerals. In contrast to Spotswood's gentlemen
    outing, he left a map of the western branches of the Potomac [usually dated 1707,
    but based on earlier journeys] and should be given due credit. When Spotswood
    and Fontaine set out, a passage through the Blue Ridge had already been [re-?]
    discovered by rangers between the Rappahannock and the Potomac; the rangers
    even ventured forty miles further. [This apparently supports the Carpenter and
    weakens the Church Swift Gap theory.] According to the July 1716 report shown
    as transparency, Spotswood knew of Michel's map [in London, 1709] and the
    mines when he and his gents rode out on their drinking party.. [Considering the
    number of toasts, no wonder one gent fell off his horse, to the amusement of the
    rest.].
    2) The location of the mysterious silver mines is clearly shown on two
    Graffenried maps [one unpublished] as being in the Massanutten mountain between the
    "branches of the Potomac" [Cenantua/Shenandoah].
    3) Michel's visits to both the Rappahannock area [and Stafford County] AND
    Siegen in the same year (1702) may be coincidental; his hiring of mining captain
    J. J. Albrecht in Holland during his March/April 1710 visit and the latter's
    1711 appearance in Siegen is not. As Holland has no mines to speak of, the
    Siegerland is the closest mininf region where [underemployed] workers and tools
    may be found. The agreement between Michel and Albrecht was made months before
    Spotswood arrived as deputy governor in Virginia, in June. [He has NO role in
    this!]
    4) During the same year, Michel was appointed general director of mining by
    William Penn. A June 1710 Deed Poll from Thomas Grey to James Logan locates the
    mines of Cenuntua [Shenandoah] within Pennsylvania. [!] In other words, the
    VA Massanutten mines and the mines on the PA "branches of the Potomac" are the
    same. [Border disputes went on for decades.]
    5) Michel and Graffenried also obtained all rights for mining ventures in
    North Carolina. [Nobody there cared for shares of "mines royal"; and Spotswood's
    insistence on clarfication of these shares is bogus, IMHO]
    6) Hence, Albrecht claims to be working for the British [Queen] are not as
    far-fetched as previously assumed.
    7) The link between Albrecht's Siegen Deed Poll of August 1711, and the
    Germanna emigrants is Pastor Haegers superior, Rev. Eberhardi.[See the latest issue
    of Beyond Germanna.]
    8) Pastor Haeger left on 13 July, 1713 in the morning hours, "without having
    said a word to anyone" [writes his surprised successor Knabenschuh with whom
    he shares the glebe rights.] Rumor has it that he wants to be with his son [in
    Berg? in New York?].
    9) Albrecht [in 1712] and the Brombach relatives asked to pay for Melchior
    mention Carolina as the ultimate goal. [Does naming this province indicate a
    reaction to the changed goal of the Michel/Graffenried colony project?]
    Andreas AMielke195@aol.com


    Tappahannock is about 2/3 of the way up the Middle Neck on the Rappahannock.
    It is at the northern most navigable (practically speaking) part of the
    Rappahannock. It served as the tobacco port for Middle Colony. Further up
    the bay, on the Potomac in Stafford County was Falmouth, which served as the
    tobacco port for the Northern Neck. Falmouth was the port our Germantown
    Germans used until the Port at Fredericksburg opened in the mid 1720s. When
    Fredericksburg (actually New Post, 5 miles below Fredericksburg) opened the
    Germans used the Carolina Road and cut the German Rolling Road (later called
    Kirtley Road) thru to Germanna as this provided a closer and more direct
    route to port. I'm not sure when Tappahannock opened as a port, but it was
    in the 17th century. Falmouth was already being used in the 1680s when the
    docks were owned by William Fitzhugh. Thom Faircloth

    As to the port city closest to Williamsburg, Jamestown was not a port city.
    Governor Spotswood landed on the ship Deptford at the Indian town of
    Kiqoutan, now the town of Hampton, VA on June 20, 1710. They boarded a sloop
    which took them to Green Springs, the home of Phillip Ludwell where they
    stayed until the completion of the Governors Mansion at Williamsburg.
    Kinquotan was a full days ride from Williamsburg. Jamestown could not
    accommodate the size of the modern ships of the early 18th century. The
    river is too shallow at that point which required them to transfer to a
    sloop (shallow bottomed sailing craft) to make it up river.

    An interesting side note here is that Phillip Ludwell became one of the
    triumvirate that succeeded in removing Spotswood as Governor in 1722. He
    along with Byrd and Price and others of the Landed Gentry so vehemently
    opposed Spotswoods encouragement of the settlement of the lands by yeoman
    farmers that they did everything they could to get him fired. Of course as
    our yeoman farmer ancestors proved, "You can get rid of the Governor, but
    you can't kill his ideas." Thom Faircloth

    Court Cases
    1. Peter Hitt testified at court about the division of land among the 12 Germanna families at Germantown in the suit between Jacob Spilman and his mother, Mary Dent.6 2. Peter Hitt was a witness to the will of Joseph Cowntz (Cuntze, Coons) another of the 1714 immigrants.7 3. Peter Hitt deeded 200 acres of land at Germantown (probably in trust): "Harman Fishback, in view of a marriage to be solemnized between himself and Mary Noe, widow, deeds to Peter Hitt 100 acres where Harman now lives and another 100 acres joining John Rector and Tillman Weaver in Germantown; test: Joseph Martin, William Coarns, John Kemper, George Dent".8 4. Peter Hitt witnesses a deed from Henry Cuntz to Tilman Weaver for 100 acres in Germantown adjoining Peter Hitt and Tilman Weaver, land which was left to Henry by the will of his father, Joseph Cuntz, dec'd.9 5. Peter Hitt, Jacob Weaver, Peter Kemper, all of Fauquier County, and Harman Fishback of Culpeper County deed to Tilman Martin 100 acres in Germantown, formerly set apart for the German glebe; test, Thomas Marshall, Tilman Weaver, Joseph Martin, Josiah Holtzclaw.10


    Deed of Fauquier County Deed Book 5/pages 178-180 22 April 1771 Between Peter Hill, Jacob Wever, Peter Kemper of Fauquier and Harman 20 Fishback of Culpeper Co. of one pt. and Tilman Martin . .. lot ..20 cont..100 A. whereon sd. Tilman Martin now lives .. binding on land of Charles Carter of Lan. Co. and Jeremiah Darnall .. being one of the lotts= of land in the German Town formerly set apart for a German glebe .. Signed: Peter (X) Hitt, Jacob Wever, Herman Fishback, Peter Kamper. Wit: Thomas Marshall, Tilman Wever, Joseph Martin, Josiah Holtzclaw. Recorded 24 Jun 1771, proved by oath of Tilman Wever, Joseph Martin and Josiah Holtzclaw.


    The Germanna Colonies John Blankenbaker In 1713, forty-odd Germans left their homes in Nassau-Siegen expecting to mine silver in the New World. In 1717, about eighty Germans left their homes in southwest Germany expecting to go to Pennsylvania. Neither of these groups fulfilled its expectations. Instead, they became guardians of the frontier in Virginia and a vanguard in the westward expansion of English civilization on the North American continent. How did this come about, especially when the Germans themselves had no expectations of serving in these capacities? Reviewing the events prior to the coming of the Germans, the Colony of Virginia had settled Huguenots on the James River as a buffer between the English and the Indians. Franz Michel in Switzerland wondered if the Swiss might not do the same thing in Virginia and establish colonies where they could send people, including Anabaptists whom they did not desire in Switzerland. Michel went to Virginia where he explored the possibilities. He liked what he saw and heard. Back in Bern, he reported to his partners who unsuccessfully attempted to obtain a concession for a Swiss colony from Queen Anne of England. Michel, meanwhile, returned to America for several years of further exploration. The Swiss entrepreneurs were approaching this venture as an opportunity to earn money. There were no altruistic motives. The reports of Michel inflamed Christoph von Graffenried of Bern who was looking for a way to restore his status and financial health. Graffenried was especially intrigued by Michel's report that he had found silver mines. Graffenried joined Michel's company (Georg Ritter and Company) and provided the necessary spark to ignite action. Though colonization was the primary objective, silver mining was promoted to equal importance. By a coincidence, this was the year, 1709, when so many Germans were in London expecting that Queen Anne would provide transportation for the emigrants who wanted to go to the English colonies. The proprietors of North Carolina had obtained permission to send several hundred of the thousands of Germans in London to their colony. These proprietors agreed to provided transportation for an initial group of Swiss if Graffenried would be responsible for the Germans they were sending over. Believing he could pursue the dual objectives of colonization and silver, Graffenried agreed to lead the several hundred Germans and a smaller contingent of Swiss to North Carolina. The silver mining was pursued by hiring Johann Justus Albrecht to purchase tools and to recruit German miners. To find the miners, Albrecht went to Siegen where there were iron mines. Graffenried thought that the North Carolina colony could be set up rather quickly and then he could devote his attention to the silver mines in Virginia. Graffenried's company had obtained the Queen's approval for land in Virginia for a Swiss colony. There was no intention now to use Swiss citizens since the German miners were to live there. In America, many misfortunes befell Graffenried. He was even lucky to escape what seemed like a certain death at the hands of the Indians. The German/Swiss colony did not prosper in these early years. Graffenried and Michel had a disagreement before Michel had shown Graffenried the location of the silver mines. Graffenried went to Virginia to see if he could find a site where he could relocate the remainder of the North Carolina colony and to see if he could find the silver mines. While he was there, he aroused the attention of Lt. Gov. Alexander Spotswood. Spotswood even invested significantly in what seemed to be a silver mine. Graffenried had to give up in America as the colonization enterprise was bankrupt. He returned to Europe in 1713 and when he passed through London he found that Albrecht was there with forty-odd people from the Siegen area who were expecting to have the balance of their trip to the colonies financed by Graffenried. No report tells us clearly why the Germans had been motivated to go to London at this time. Graffenried, being broke, could only advise them to go home. They did not feel they could do this as they were citizens without a country. Instead, the Germans agreed to pay a part of their transportation costs and to work four years to pay for the balance. The agent for Virginia in London obligated Spotswood to pay this balance even though Spotswood himself knew nothing of the agreement. This agent in London, Nathaniel Blakiston, was very much aware that Spotswood was interested in precious metals. He appeared on Spotswood's behalf before the Board of Trade and before Lord Orkney who was the nominal governor of Virginia. He pleaded for a resolution of the question of the royal percentage if precious metals were found. Because of Blakiston's knowledge of Spotswood's interest in these precious metals, he felt that the Germans were a good opportunity for Spotswood to obtain the labor he might be needing. After the Germans were in Virginia, Spotswood welcomed them in the hope that they could be put to work in the projected silver mine of which he was a quarter owner. This mine was about fifteen miles beyond the western extent of English civilization so Spotswood obtained the concurrence of the Virginia Council to build a fort from the public monies for the Germans. The official explanation was that the Germans were to be the guardians of the frontier to protect the English from the Indians. They did serve in this capacity. From the land plots, one can see that the mine which seemed to have silver was only about four miles from the German settlement. As with many of Spotswood's actions, it is hard to distinguish between the public policy which he was helping to formulate and his personal interests. Because the status of foreigners was uncertain, Spotswood was afraid that his actions might be held against him. Perhaps the naming of the fort as Germanna was a subtle appeal to Queen Anne who was favorably inclined toward Germans. Spotswood would not allow the Germans to work in the mine until the legal title to precious metals was clarified. Therefore, the Germans did no mining for two years while instead they farmed and guarded the frontier. Eventually an attempt was made to locate silver ores but the mine was abandoned because none could be found. Spotswood was looking for a means to insure his economic future which, as Lt. Governor, was not secure. Observing how other people in Virginia had prospered, he decided on a course of land acquisition. Most of the land in the Tidewater region had been taken up and the large tracts were all in the Piedmont to the west where there were no settlements and no roads but there were Indians. This was the best available land in the period from 1710 to 1720, especially in large tracts. This land had never been patented to private owners by the Crown and it was available relatively cheaply. Once a private individual took up the land, he had to make improvements and to settle a certain number of people. The western lands could be raided easily by the Indians which would discourage settlers. No one wanted to be first and risk his own safety. Spotswood saw that the answer lay in obtaining a large number of people who could be settled at the same time. Their safety would be provided by their own numbers and they would provide the settlers to make a valid claim to a large tract. The Fort Germanna Germans had done a good job in keeping the peace without creating any problems for the Virginians. Spotswood envisioned that the people he wanted and needed could be Germans. In conversations with the captains of ships, he let them know he wanted a whole shipload of Germans. One of them, Andrew Tarbett, when he was back in England, agreed to take about eighty Germans to Pennsylvania which was where they wanted to go. Instead, he took them to Virginia on the ship Scott where he sold them as servants to Spotswood and his partners. They were settled on a tract of 40,000 acres of land (40,000 acres was the official description but the tract was closer in size to 65,000 acres) starting to the west of Germanna. The Germans in the fort had been the western- most point of English civilization on the Atlantic seaboard. After the second group came, they were the most western point of English civilization even though, in both cases, the language and customs were German. The first group of Germans, the "miners" from Nassau-Siegen, lived in the fort and worked about four years for Spotswood. During the first two years they cleared land and farmed, then for about two and half years, they worked in mining and quarrying, first at the silver mine and then with the iron ores which they had discovered. Early in 1719, they moved north to land they had purchased in the Northern Neck, just south of today's Warrenton. Before they left the employment of Spotswood, they had found and developed iron mines but they did not build an iron furnace for Spotswood. This group, which became known as the First Germanna Colony, was German Reformed by religion. The Second Germanna Colony came from many different villages which were mostly south and east of Heidelberg with a few from outside this area. They worked seven years for Spotswood and his partners in naval stores projects and in vineyards. When they did move, they went about twenty-five miles farther west to land in the Robinson River Valley at the foot of the Blue Ridge Mountains. This again was an extremely exposed position but they chose this general region because land there was free at the time and there were few or no English settlers which gave them space for expansion. By religion they were predominantly Lutheran. In 1740, they built a church which is still being used today as a Lutheran church (it is now the oldest building in the Americas still in use as a Lutheran church). Even before the Germans had left the vicinity of Fort Germanna, more Germans were coming. After the Germans had left the neighborhood of Fort Germanna, the newcomers moved directly to the regions where the earlier Germans were then living. These newcomers had a mixed background. Some of them had been in the English colonies for a few years and were relocating. Others came directly from Germany. Many were friends and relatives of those already here. This process continued until and after the Revolution. During the war, some of the British auxiliaries from Germany thought that farming in a German community was better than carrying a musket for the British. All of these people are called the Germanna Colonists even though the majority of them were never at Germanna and they were not members of any colony. Essentially, the common characteristic was that they lived on the east side of the Blue Ridge Mountains. The name Germanna Colonist is used because it was appropriate for the first of the Germans. The process of finding the Germans who lived in this general region is ongoing. New names are being uncovered. Work continues also in extending their history in Europe including locations in Germany, Switzerland, and Austria. Because many of the activities bearing on the early Germanna citizens were semi-official, there is considerable recorded history about them. Major sources of family information pertaining to the Second Colony people are their church records where there are baptismal records from 1750 to the early 1800's and communion lists from 1775 to 1812. There is a sense of community identity among all of the Germanna people which still exists. Reprinted from "Beyond Germanna," volume 14, number 3 (May 2002) with permission. The twelve hundred and fourteen note in a series on the Germanna Colonies Marc Wheat has located a number of very specific documents (or of references to the documents) which are of interest. To me, the minutes of the October 2, 1713, meeting of the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts are extremely interesting for the information they contain. Rev. Henry Häger of what would be the First Germanna Colony had asked for the support of the Society in the New World. The Society declined its help as "the case of Mr. Hager does not properly lie before the society." This shows that the group must have been there at that date (unless you want to assume that Rev. Häger had gone on ahead of the others). At this particular moment, the group was in trouble for they had journeyed from Siegen to London expecting to find Graffenried there. They expected that he would finance the trip to America. When they got there, Graffenried was notthere. With the state of communications being what it was in those days, the Germans were in the dark concerning their future. The Rev. Häger had applied for aid for himself and perhaps it would have been his intention to go on even if the rest of the group could not. He thought of the Society as a possibility because his son had secured aid from them. We can only speculate how much before October 2 the Germans had arrived. It might have been some number of weeks and a little note of desperation might have been coming in. We do not know when Graffenried arrived but it was probably not long after this date. We do know that he was home in Switzerland in December. In his memoirs, Graffenried left a marginal note saying that he had heard the Germans left London in January. So it is very easy to imagine the Germans were in London for at least four months and possibly longer. This much we can determine from a few scraps of information. This is why the various documents can be so important. Individually, they may not mean much, but taken together, they help tremendously in putting the picture together. All of the Germans had a problem in supporting themselves. Graffenried helped in finding work for them though he implies that the work he had found for them in building a dike or dam was overturned by flood waters. Probably all of the men that could work did work. But this would not have included Rev. Häger who was retired because of his health. The Germans did have a strong sense of cooperation and apparently all of the money they hador earned was used in a common pool to support everyone. We will never a full understanding of the events in London but the items which help us certainly include some of the dates. He arrived apparently with 13 other families in the ship Scott withCaptain Andrew Tarbett. This from JohnBlankenbaker.
    Germanna Record # 1, July, 1961-Huffman
    Tom Riley gives birthday as 1685/1690
    Deathdate from C. Betts-likely incorrect-also noticed Henry's disfavoraccording to will. from eastern part of Siegen Parish near Caan.Catholic part of Siegen but family was protestant. Name derived fromheath.
    probably a farmer according to b. littlefield Will dated 3-23-1772,proved 7-27-72-Mary Johnson found book by Dr. Lothar Irle in Siegenlibrary stating Peter Heide, son of Jacob Heide of the farm Rehbach nearMarienborn, emigrated from Trupbach to Va. in 1714 and called himselfHitt.
    From MR Hitt, 4-9-93--born circa 1690 (subtracting 25 yrs from birth ofpresumed first child),, died between 23 Mar. 1772 (when will was written)and 27 July 1772 (when will was proved), Fauquier Co. Va. {WB 1:200,Peter Hitt, ddtd. 1772 Fau. Co. Va.}. Married perhaps in Eng. presumedlyjust before embarking to Amer to Elizabeth perhaps James (according toJesse Martin Hitt records, Olympia Wa(an early family historian1852-1931). Other wives attributed to Peter but not proved are MariaElisabeth Freudenberg and ElizabethOtterbach.
    Earl Hitt says b 1690, place unknown. Wife's family name unknown. Otherimmigrants in his party had been iron workers in Va. See Blankenbakernotes for more detail. In his will he gives each living child a negroexcept Henry whom he cuts off with $100. After death of Elizabeth estateis to be divided among 5 excluding Henry. Harman and Joseph namedexecutors.
    One researcher discovered from a pastor at a protestant church, a villageon the highway between Siegen and Musen, dating back to 1585 that whilethere were none in his parish, he knew that the German spelling for thename was Heide. He said there can be no name in German that has nomeaning, and the meaning of this word is "a meadowman".
    Gave up his headrights to Laus Crees of the second colony. Moved fromGermanna to Germantown about 20 mi. northwest about 1718 with rest of thefirst colony. Logically, this move was probably in January of 1719 afterthe time of indenture to Spotswood (4 years) was completed, just monthsafter the purchase of the land and after harvesting the crops from theSpotswood tract. Though January might be a cold wet time to move, theywould want to relocate after the previous year's crops had been harvestedand the butchering completed. Then, January thru March would have beenspent cutting trees, clearing brush, and erecting dwellings prior to thespring planting. This second location used Rev. Henry Haeger as pastorof their German Reform Church. Haeger also served as pastor for theLutherans at Hebron in Madison Co., because no one else had yet beenhired.
    Ferndorf, where he m Maria Freudenberg is about 6 miles north of Siegen.After the marriage in 1707, John Blankenbaker says he nor his wife is mentioned again.
    Headrights are one source of immigrant names. These were used at the time
    a land patent was taken from the Crown. In the last note, I gave
    forty-eight of these names, all of which seem to be members of the Second
    Germanna Colony. One can take the names from the land patents, and Nugent
    was very careful to give the names in her abstracts of the patents.

    Normally though, the first step was to obtain the headright. The immigrant
    went to court to prove his importation and thereby set in motion the
    process. For example, on June 3, 1724, the following First Colony members
    all went to the Spotsylvania Court and gave evidence as to their coming:
    John Spellman, Harmon Fitchback, John Huffman, Joseph Cuntz, John Fitzback,
    Jacob Rickart, Milchert Brumback, Dillman Weaver, Peter Hitt.

    The amount of detail that a man gave varied considerably. They usually
    gave the year and perhaps the month. The statement also said who came with
    the petitioner. These are not to be taken too literally. For example,
    John Huffman said he was accompanied by Katherina, his wife. You might
    assume that John was married when he came, but you would be in error if you
    did. She did come at the same time, but they were not married yet.

    Not everyone took out a headright. After treasury warrants came in use,
    one could pay five shillings per fifty acres as an alternative. If you
    lived in the Northern Neck, as the First Colony did, you had to find a buyer
    for your headright, since you could not use it in the Northern Neck.

    Alexander Spotswood complained that people were cheating the Crown by taking
    out multiple headrights. He set up a system of cross checks to prevent
    this, but it was not perfect. In fact, some of our Germanna people applied
    for and got headrights even though they were not entitled to them. Peter
    Weaver was one such person.

    There is an account of the settlement at Germantown in: Landmarks of Old Prince William (Harrison, Fairfax) Richmond, 1924 Vol. 1, pp.207-221.
    The book Fauquier County in the Revolution cites this reference: "In 1718 a small group of German miners from the principality of Westphalia applied to Robert Carter, agent for the vast Fairfax Proprietary, for a grant of land on Licking run." (T. Triplett Russell and John K> Gott Willow Bend Books 1998
    second printing) I have seen a plat of this land, I believe in the Fauquier County records.

    The eleven hundred and twenty-first note in a series on the Germanna Colonies

    The Germanna Colonies came into existence as the result of the desire by
    Christoph von Graffenried and Franz Michel to recruit miners for a silver
    mine in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia. These two men, then in London,
    were working for George Ritter and Company, a stock company headquartered
    in Bern, Switzerland. They hired another man, Johann Justus Albrecht, to do
    the recruiting and instructed him to go to Siegen in Germany where he was
    to purchase tools and to hire miners.

    Albrecht seems to have gone to Siegen very promptly but he encountered some
    difficulty in recruiting the miners. As a promotional tool, he signed an
    agreement with the Protestant pastors in Siegen in which they were to
    receive monies from the mines. Presumably, in return he expected their help
    in finding and encouraging people to go.

    Within the year, Albrecht was back in London where he wrote a charter for a
    mining company to find and produce silver and gold in America. Apparently
    he was trying to sell shares in this venture even though it is not
    identified as associated with George Ritter and Company. Communication with
    Graffenried, who was in North Carolina, was probably slow and erratic and
    perhaps less than clear. Either late in 1712 or early in 1713, Albrecht
    went back to Siegen and suggested it was time to go to America. The
    forty-odd Germans that he assembled paid their own way to London but they
    understood that funds would be available there to finance the rest of the trip.

    In the late summer, or perhaps the early fall of 1713, the Germans were in
    London but Graffenried, who was to have the funds to pay for the rest of
    the trip, was not there. In the face of his uncertain arrival, the Germans
    sought work to support themselves. Perhaps about October, Graffenried did
    arrive in London. There was a mutual surprise by each of the parties,
    Graffenried and the Germans. Graffenried wrote that he had not asked them
    to come to London. The Germans were sorely disappointed that Graffenried
    was not able to live up to his word.

    Graffenried's initial reaction, in his own words, was that he advised them
    to go home. The Germans saw it differently because from their standpoint
    they had no homes to which they could return. In their minds, they had to
    go on as they saw no future in England. With just their own money, they did
    not have the necessary funds to pay their transportation to America. But
    they did volunteer that they would work for four years to pay the part of
    their transportation that they could not afford.

    With this as a bargaining tool, Graffenried visited people in London
    including Nathaniel Blakiston who, as the agent for Virginia in London, was
    well acquainted the Lt. Gov. in Virginia, Alexander Spotswood. He knew that
    Spotswood had a fractional interest in a mine that was thought to contain
    silver. Spotswood had not proceeded with this mine because the share that
    was to go to Queen Anne had never been specified. Blakiston, on the
    assumption that this question would be resolved shortly, decided to commit
    Spotswood to paying the 150 pounds sterling that would be required, in
    addition to what the Germans would contribute, for their transportation
    costs to America.

    John Blankenbaker
    The eleven hundred and twenty-second note in a series on the Germanna Colonies

    When the people from Siegen arrived in Virginia in 1714, Spotswood had
    already been told they were coming. He paid the one and fifty pounds
    sterling and put a plan into action that he had formulated a couple of
    years earlier when the Indian unrest in North Carolina had left an uneasy
    feeling in Virginians. Spotswood put the Germans into a simple fort that
    was beyond the frontier of English civilization. By this means he was
    providing a barrier to Indian incursions in this region. Because of the
    public duty the Germans would be providing, he obtained the Council's
    approval to defray some of the expense. He did not publically enter into
    the record that this location, in a horseshoe bend of the Rapidan River,
    was about four miles from land in which he owned a fractional interest.
    This land was on Mine Run on the south side of the Rapidan River. Mine Run
    derives its name from the fact that the land along it was thought to
    contain silver ore. Spotswood did not give the Germans permission to dig at
    the site because the rights of the Crown were not defined. For at least two
    years or longer, the German farmed and built roads and bridges.

    Spotswood was looking for ways to establish his personal economic base. An
    Indian trading company was established and he was an investor in this but
    it was not of a significant size. As he looked around, he saw that the
    basis of wealth in Virginia was land as the Byrds and Beverleys had shown.
    Robert Beverley even invited him to join a land partnership. With the
    intent to acquire land, Spotswood set up a western exploration trip in 1716
    to explore land to the west of Germanna up to and beyond the Blue Ridge
    Mountains. The trip was even set up as an official venture of the colony so
    that costs could be reimbursed. As a consequence, Spotswood and Beverley
    identified and staked out land amounting to more than 60,000 acres.

    Because of the exposed position of this land, a large group of people was
    needed to settle as a body on the land. The Germans at Germanna had been a
    success, a very good success, as keepers of the peace. Spotswood wanted to
    duplicate this on the 60,000 acres but the Germans were not coming to
    Virginia. He started talking to the captains of the ships which called at
    Jamestown and in the spring of 1717 he had an occasion to talk to Andrew
    Tarbett. Tarbett who at the time had no ship as the pirates had taken and
    burned his ship. When he got back to England, he became the master of the
    ship Scott. Very shortly thereafter, a group of Germans appeared in London
    looking for transportation to Pennsylvania. Tarbett promised to take them
    as they wished but, knowing there was a need for the Germans in Virginia,
    he took them to Virginia against their wishes. In this way these Germans
    became the indentured servants of Spotswood and his partners and they were
    settled on the 60,000 acres. Among the projects they were given was the
    raising of naval stores which were needed in England.

    So in 1718, Spotswood's personal economic base was to be founded on land.
    Already he knew that the first group of Germans would be leaving as their
    four years of service would be up in 1718 and they had purchased land
    elsewhere.

    John Blankenbaker
    The eleven hundred and twenty-third note in a series on the Germanna Colonies

    The first group of Germans had been looking around in the district
    surrounding Germanna. They found iron ore and brought it to Spotswood's
    attention. At about the time the second group of Germans came, Spotswood
    received a letter from Sir Richard in England who wanted Spotswood to
    search for iron ore with the objective of establishing an "iron works."
    This would have been about the beginning of 1718 (NS). Spotswood replied
    that he would have his Germans look and, of course, it was not difficult to
    find something of which they were already aware. Still, Spotswood did not
    deviate from his main thrust which was to acquire land. He added iron as
    another possibility, but only as a possibility.

    The first group of Germans left Germanna about January of 1719 (NS) to go
    to their own land in the Northern Neck which became known as "Germantown."
    With money from partners and with labor that probably came from England,
    Spotswood built an iron furnace but it did not go smoothly. William Byrd
    could tell the Board of Trade in November of 1721 that iron could be cast
    in Virginia but that they could not make bar iron. A small shipment of cast
    iron was sent to England in 1723 and a more significant shipment was made
    in 1724. By then Spotswood felt confident enough that he could go to
    England to pursue the titles to his lands and to find a wife. Before he
    left, he gave instructions to his agents to continue the lawsuits against
    the members of the second group of Germans to recover the monies he had
    spent on their transportation.
    Spotswood remained in England about five years while his iron furnace was
    sending a modest stream of iron to England.

    Probably in 1725, the second group of Germans left their homes along the
    north bank of the Rapidan River just above Germanna and moved to land of
    their own. Most of them went to the Robinson River Valley but a few moved
    only a few miles to the southeast of Mt. Pony. They obtained a generous
    quantity of free land as a result of the legislation that had been by
    initiated by Spotswood to reduce his own costs of acquiring land.

    By 1725, most of the Germans were living on land of their own and were
    independent of Spotswood or others. They viewed one of their most pressing
    problems as obtaining ministers. While the first group had brought a
    minister with them, the Rev. Häger, the second group was located at some
    distance from him. Rev. Häger was old and the number of years remaining for
    him could not be many. So all of the Germans felt the need for ministers.
    As there were few ministers in the colonies who could speak German,
    attention was focused on Germany. The second group went so far as to send
    two of their members to Germany to seek a minister but they were unsuccessful.

    Even before the second group had moved to their own lands, they were joined
    by friends and relatives, usually from the same villages as the original
    group had come. This same phenomenon occurred also with the first group but
    it did not commence until later. Whereas the second group had been given as
    about 80 people in 1717/18, it had reached the number of 300 by 1733 by new
    people from Germany as well as by more births than deaths within the group.
    Apparently, both groups were feeling better about the situation in Virginia.


    John Blankenbaker

    The eleven hundred and thirtieth note in a series on the Germanna Colonies

    In the Siegen area in 1709, a significant number of people left for
    America. Everyone who remained in Siegen was perfectly well aware of the
    event. It did not take a newspaper, radio, or TV to inform them. By word of
    mouth, everyone knew and the pros and cons were debated.

    One year later, a man appeared in Siegen who said that he wanted to hire
    miners to work in America in silver mines. We have no knowledge of the
    terms that he offered. Again, his presence would have been known throughout
    the district within weeks even though we assume that he was a stranger. And
    the company he was working for, George Ritter and Company of Switzerland,
    was totally unknown. So Johann Justus Albrecht had a tough sell to interest
    people in this American mining adventure.

    Two factors helped him. The departure of so many people the previous year
    did create the sense that it could be done. Here was another opportunity.
    The fact that so many had left, the previous year indicates the economic
    life was poor. So at least a few people listened to what Albrecht had to say.

    Albrecht overstated things to the extent that he was not always believable.
    His statements seemed so dubious that the agent of the Emperor (as in Holy
    Roman Emperor) had the man arrested. It is said that he was released only
    with the intervention of the English ambassador. Why the English ambassador
    should have been involved is not clear except the proposed work was in the
    American colonies.

    Albrecht changed tactics. He signed a "contract" with the Protestant
    pastors in Siegen in which he promised a payment from the mines to the
    pastors in return for their help in recruiting the miners. This was in
    1711. By this means he was enabled to get tentative agreements from a
    number of people. Albrecht then returned to London where we find him in May
    of 1712. He was engaged in writing a promotion for gold and silver mine(s)
    in South Carolina. He described himself as the head miner who completed his
    work in South Carolina by 5 January 1709. One sees, when reading his
    language, why he may have fallen in trouble with the agent of the Emperor.

    What is not clear is why he was writing this document. It appears that he
    was trying to sell shares in the venture. It does not appear that George
    Ritter and Company was involved in this and they were his nominal employer.
    Nowhere is this company mentioned.

    Apparently Albrecht was proud of his document for he brought it to America.
    It found its way to the Spotsylvania Court house, and the officials not
    knowing what to do with this fancy document in German, simply put it in the
    back of the Spotsylvania Court Order Book for 1724-1730. It probably
    remained untouched until Elke Hall translated it for publication in Beyond
    Germanna. She admitted to some difficulties because there were more pages
    than sentences.


    John Blankenbaker

    The twelve hundred and tenth note in a series on the Germanna Colonies Today I will be at Germantown trying to answer a few questions. Germantown got its name in the same way that all of the many Germantowns did. Wherever people saw a few Germans living close together, they called it Germantown. Or perhaps they called it Dutch Town or something similar to that. The Germantown to which the First German Colony moved started as a well-defined piece of land (even though the different surveys did not agree). It consisted of a rectangular piece of ground which, theoretically, contained 1805 acres. It was larger in practice than the survey said. We might say it contains three square miles configured as one mile by three miles. For the fourteen families, they divided it into twenty parcels by running lines across the short dimension as though they were slicing bread. Why it was twenty parcels is a mystery. In the end they divided these additional lots into two parts and some families had one and a half lots using the original division as the definition of a lot. The division this way tended to divide the physical features most equitably. For example, Licking Run flows in the long direction so the cross cuts gave everyone a part of Licking Run. The northern lots tended to have more hills than the southern ones so the lots were not entirely equal. It is said that the actual assignment of the lots was by chance. With a church and school at the center the distance from the ends of the total tract was a mile and a half. Though we would be inclined to think this was a long distance to walk to church, the people were used to going these distances by foot. Apparently, every lot had its own home. Instead of the village concept from which one went to one's fields, people were living on their own land. Before many years had passed, the residents were buying additional land. In some cases this was at a considerable distance from the original Germantown. One of the first to leave physically was John Hoffman who moved to the Robinson River Valley just shortly after the Second Colony had moved into this district. Then Jacob Holtzclaw and John Fishback took up land on the other side of the Rappahannock River. One of the motivations of all three of these men may have been the land which was free in Spotsylvania County for a limited time. The Rectors tended to go to the north and left a reminder of their presence in Rector Town. This exodus was motivated in part by the scarcity of land at Germantown. "King" Carter owned 10,000 acres on three sides of Germantown which limited expansion in these directions. Also, the growth in the number of settlers meant there was a competition for land. A native of northern Virginia was said that the land they had chosen was not the best land. There was better land. However, the Moravians in the middle of the eighteenth century commented on the Germantown community which appears to have been vigorous even though without a church leader. Descendants of some of the original settlers continued to live indefinitely on the Germantown land. Whether there was a communal cemetery as opposed to multiple private cemeteries is a debated question. Some people believe that what is called the Martin cemetery is really a community cemetary. John Blankenbaker
    The thirteen hundred and twenty-fifth note in a series on the Germanna Colonies There was some discussion a few weeks ago about Maidstone. Willis Kemper thought that Maidstone was where the First Germanna Colony had spent some time, in particular the winter of 1713-1714. Maidstone is a city about 25 miles southeast of London. John Rector in Virginia first named a town that he laid out as "Maidstone." Kemper thought this might be evidence that Maidstone may have been a place in England where the colony lived and in particular he thought that John Rector was born in Maidstone in England. We now know that John Rector was born at Trupbach outside Siegen in 1711. So the evidence that Kemper thought he had (it originated with a statement made by a descendant in the Rector family) did not support his argument. Had Kemper put together the evidence that was available, scanty as it was, he would have seen that it was inconsistent with the conclusion that the colony had lived for any length of time at any place outside London. The First Germanna Colony probably left their home in the summer of 1713. I believe there were some exit visas which helped to provide a time of departure. The trip to London would have taken a month to six weeks. Their arrival in London may be taken as late summer or early fall. Certainly they were there before Graffenried arrived from New York. We know that Graffenried left Virginia just after Easter in 1713. He rode horse back to New York City where he found a ship to England. This ship did not go to London but stopped at one of the northern English ports. Graffenried says he rested two weeks there. Then he went down to London. Again, his arrival in London might be taken as summer to early fall. He says that when he arrived there, he found the Germans were there. It seems that he arrived back in Switzerland in early December of 1713. On more than one occasion he mentioned his desire to be home in Switzerland before winter set in. He could have left London in early November and been home a month later. We do not know how long he was in London but he says that he going from person to person to find transportation and work for the Germans. If we gave him a month for this activity, then he arrived in early fall. The Germans were probably there for several weeks before this. Graffenried says that the Germans left London in January of 1714 (NS) which is a date that is very consistent with their arrival in early spring in Virginia since ocean voyages often took ten weeks in the west-bound direction. After Graffenried left the Germans, about the first of November, they probably stayed close to London in anticipation of leaving. Before Graffenried arrived, the Germans probably stayed close to London to intercept Graffenried. I do not see there was any chance for them to absentthemselves from London. I would doubt that they stayed in any other city in England besides London. Any contrary views would be welcomed. John Blankenbaker
    The fourteen hundred and ninety-first note in a series on the Germanna Colonies The German "miners" who were stranded in London appear to have told Graffenried that, having come to London, they were going to go on to America. They were even willing to work for someone in America to help pay for the trip. The arrangement that was worked out was that the Germans putup as much money as they could spare. They were short about 150 pounds and by the rates generally in existence this seemed to work out to be four years of service. Graffenried had the names of several people that he should talk to (some probably furnished by Spotswood) and thereby he came into contact with Col. Blakiston who lent a receptive ear. Spotswood had been very excited about his silver mine and, should the royalty question be settled, he would need miners. Normally, the sequence would be to solve the royalty problem and then look for miners. But Blakiston was willing to take a gamble. It was not his money; it would be Spotswood's. And so a deal was cut. Spotswood would pay the 150 pounds and the Germans would work for him for four years. Some merchants in London would advance the money to the ship's captain and Spotswood would pay the ship captain who would reimburse the London merchants. Spotswood was not a party to the agreement in advance of its being executed. Blakiston and Graffenried both wrote to Spotswood telling him what his obligations were. Blakiston's letter to Spotswood got to him before the Germans did. When the Germans arrived in Virginia, Spotswood was aware that they were now his employees. The silver mine was beyond civilization by about fifteen miles. This was also a part of the frontier where there was no protection from the Indians. A couple of years before this time, Spotswood had already formulated a plan to settle Germans on the frontier, between the Indians and the English. This is the plan he put into effect and won the support of the Council for the Colony to finance it. He put it forth as a low-cost plan to protect the English from the Indians. He did not happen to mention that the fort which the colony built for the Germans was only about four or five miles from his silver mine. Spotswood had been rather happy about the plan that had been put into execution by Blakiston. He wrote Blakiston that he didn't think Blakiston would do such a thing unless there was reason to believe the royalty question was to be solved soon. Spotswood was now inclined to believe that was the case (based on Blakiston's actions) and at the same time he had the miners that he would be needing. The Germans were probably informed that their future would involve mining. But they were told by Spotswood there would be no start to the mining until the royalty question was solved. They were told to settle down and start clearing land so they could plant gardens and crops. They also started building roads to the fort. John Blankenbaker
    Fauquier Co. was formed 1759 from Prince William Co. The names of some descendants of Germanna Colonists (First Colony) appear in those early court records. Fauquier Co. Court, 17 Sep 1759 Mary Gent, Plt. agt Jacob Spilman, Deft. In Ejectment The Deft. filed a Bill of Injunction, Whereupon the Cause is continued til the matter is heard in Equity. On the motion of Deft., a Dedimus is awarded him to take the depositions of Tilman Weaver, Harmon Fishback and Peter Hitt Senr.

    The eleven hundred and eighty-seventh note in a series on the Germanna Colonies Spotswood and his proposed partners in the western land enterprise needed settlers for the large tract that they had their eyes on. The Germans at Germanna had served admirably as peace keepers and Spotswood wanted more of these people. But Germans were not coming to Virginia. The emphasis of the Germans was on Pennsylvania. I would bet that Spotswood asked the Germans at Germanna if they could recruit many more people. In his official duties at Williamsburg, Spotswood was in a good position to talk to the captains of ships. Some of his official duties required him to talk to the captains. On one occasion early in the spring of 1717, he was investigating an act of piracy that had occurred not far off the coast of Virginia. He took a disposition from the captain, Andrew Tarbett, of the ship Agnis which the pirates had captured, plundered, and then burned. I believe that, after the official disposition was taken, Spotswood and Tarbett talked and the Lt. Gov. asked Tarbett about Germans. There is no reason to believe that Tarbett had any good information about them since his speciality was taking tobacco back to Great Britain and bringing goods out for the Virginians. He certainly could not promise to bring any Germans as there were so few who had come prior to 1717 and these had gone to Pennsylvania. Back in England, Tarbett obtained another ship, the Scott. At least in a few years he was the captain of the ship Scott and involved in bribing customs officials to let some of his tobacco pass by without paying the customary fees. He had the right credentials. A ship of the right name. A man of low morals. Someone who had talked to Spotswood. Barely had Tarbett obtained a ship than a group of Germans appeared wanted to go to Pennsylvania. Tarbett had no hesitancy in promising to take them there. When he landed the Germans, they were surprised that they were in Virginia and not Pennsylvania. But Tarbett said the storms had forced him south. Tarbett sought out Spotswood and made a bargain for the whole ship load of the Germans. With this one effort, Spotswood and his partners had the settlers for their land. The land where they were to be settled was already specified but not yet patented. It was even to the west of Beverley's contribution to the partnership. With this one effort, a land rush was opened for bits and pieces around the partnership's land. Again, the Germans were living beyond what would normally be considered the frontier of Virginia. John Blankenbaker
    The fourteen hundred and ninety-second note in a series on the Germanna Colonies Not long after the Germans "miners" were settled at Fort Germanna, Queen Anne died. This complicated the settlement of the royalty question. First, a decision had to be made as to whom the next sovereign would be. After King George was selected, he had to become acquainted with the job. For two years no decision was reached on the royalty question. Spotswood had suggested to Blakiston that he try the argument with King George that he would be helping his fellow countrymen if he made a favorable decision to share the minerals with the operators of the mine. Spotswood, when the Germans had been with him for about two years, wrote that the Germans had done nothing to reimburse him for his expense. But just about this time, Spotswood seems to have decided that he would set the Germans to work on the silver mine. We know from a statement by Albrecht and Holtzclaw that the Germans worked at quarrying and mining from March of 1716 to December of 1718 (both new style dates). Reading between the lines of John Fontaine's report on the crossing of the Blue Ridge Mountains which started from Germanna, I would gather that the Germans had been working on the silver mine. Since this trip was in August and September of 1716, it would appear that the Germans had been working on the silver mine from March up to then. One of Fontaine's tasks during this trip was to evaluate whether the silver mine would yield anything. His writings are negative on the prospects. Several years later, Spotswood wrote to Col. Harrison, the deputy auditor general, that he set his Germans to looking for iron at about the time the Second Colony came. This would have been late 1717 or early 1718 (by the modern calendar). From the fall of 1716 to the fall of 1717, it is not clear what the Germans were doing. I suspect that they had been exploring the country side on their own and probably had found good traces of iron. So when Spotswood said he set his Germans to searching for iron starting about the beginning of 1718, it was probably the case they had been working in this area for perhaps a year but perhaps informally. This was not full time work as the Germans had to take time to farm. Also, there was no furnace built up to December 1718 as Spotswood said that he had spent upwards of sixty pounds sterling on the project. The budget for furnaces usually ran into thousands of pounds of money. In the opening lines I put the word miner into quotation marks. At one time Spotswood wrote that the Germans "could generally be called miners." I have wondered what the effect of the word "generally" is here. I am of the opinion that it weakens the statement. I would be interested in what you think it would mean. John Blankenbaker
    <><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><
    The text of Peter's last Will & Testament is as follows:

    In the name of God, Amen, this 23rd day of May in the year of our Lord one
    thousand seven hundred and seventy-two (1772):
    I Peter Hitt of the County of Fauquier, being of weak of body, but of
    perfect mind and memory, Thanks be to God for it, do make and ordain this
    my last Will and Testament,

    That is to say I give and devise in the following manner and form:
    Imprimis: I give and bequest to Elizabeth, my beloved wife, all of my
    estate to use during her natural life.

    Item: I give to my son, John Hitt, my Negro woman Judy and My Negro boy
    George.

    Item: I give and bequeath to my son, Joseph Hitt, my Negro man called
    "Young Tom".

    Item: I give and bequeath to my son, Harman Hitt, my Negro girl, Hannah,
    and my Negro man called "Old Tom."

    Item: I give and bequeath to my daughter,
    Mary Rector, one hundred acres of land, being the plantation where I now
    live, and my Negro boy named Moses.

    Item: I give to my son, Henry Hitt, one hundred pounds cash, which is all
    he is to have of my estate.

    Item: My will and desire is that after the decease of my wife, that all my
    estate not herein mentioned be sold to the highest bidder, and the money
    arising therefrom be equally divided among all my children hereafter named.
    That is to say, John, Joseph, Harman, Peter, and Mary, and lastly, I do
    nominate and appoint my eldest sons, Harman Hitt and Joseph Hitt, executors
    of this my Last Will and Testament.

    In Witness I have hereunto set my hand and seal the day and year above
    written. In the presence of Harman (X) Rector, Joseph Taylor, & John
    Morgan.
    Signed: Peter (P) Hitt

    Refer to Probate Records Circuit Court of Fauquier County, Virginia, Will
    Book # 1, page # 200.


    Jear J.B. Hitt, Greetings from London. Check this out: haben ihren Namen von ihrer Herkunft. Der Ursprung dürfte im Dorf Heidt bei Olpe liegen Im Siegerland sind solche Namensträger seit dem 15. Jahrhundert in dem Kirchspiel Netphen nachzuweisen. Peter Heide aus Marienborn ist 1714 von Trupbach nach Amerika ausgewandert. Im Siegener Ortsteil Trupbach ist der Name seit Jost HEIDE im Jahre 1583 bis heute vertreten. Very rough translation: ***** Have your name from your Ancestry. The birth probably proves to be in the village Heidt by/at Ople that rests in Siegerland are such NamenStrager [can't find translation--Namen means names] since the 15th century in the parish Netphen. Peter Heide from Marienborn immigrated from Trupbach to America in 1714. In the local part of Sieger Trubach is represented by the name Jost Heath since the year 1583 until today. ***** I have also found using this same reference information on the family Otterbach (this is the correct spelling according to the source), Freudenberg, and Fischbach (this is the correct spelling according to the source) all from Naussau-Siegen area. David Miller idavidmiller@earthlink.net
    Peter Hitt Will 23 March, 1772 27 July 1772
    Wife, Elizabeth Hitt, to have estate during her lifetime. Slaves to sons; John, Joseph and Peter Hitt. Daughter; Mary Rector, 100 acres of land. To son Henry Hitt, 100 pounds of curr. money. Children; John, Joseph, Harmon, Peter and Mary.
    Exrs; sons Harmon and Joseph. Wit: Harmon Rector, Joseph Taylor, John Morgan, Harmon Rector.
    [Will Book 1, page 200]
    Fauquier Co Rent Roll, 1770
    Harmon Hitt 500
    John Hitt 216
    John Hitt Jr 53
    Joseph Hitt 214
    Peter Hitt Sr 200
    Peter Hitt Jr. 275
    ***
    from Va. Keefer at ginnykeefer@cox.net

    Church historian William J. Hinke is the perhaps most prolific scholar not only of the German Church in America, but also he is specifically noteworthy as publisher and translator of seminal documents relating to Virginia's Germanna. In a dozen brief points that deserve revisiting, he sums up the controversial history in his [undated] reading of Graffenried documents and other sources. These typewritten summary points can be found in the Evangelical and Reformed Historical Society, Philip Schaff Library, 555 W. James Street, Lancaster, PA 17603.: "From these and other statements of Graffenried the following important facts can be gathered: (1) The whole subject of mines in Virginia had been started by Francis Louis Michel, who had been in Virginia from 1702-1708. He had found pieces of ore in Virginia, which he claimed to contain silver. [inserted handwritten note, possibly not by Hinke, at the end of number (1):]There is some possibility this was not in Va., but was the Pequea Silver Mine, Lanc. Co. Peter Chartier was in the scheme. (2) Upon his return to England in 1708 he met Graffenried and formed with him a scheme to open a silver mine on land owned jointly by Graffenried and the Governor. (3) Letters were sent by Graffenried to Germany and an agreement was drawn up between him and certain miners to work a silver mine for them in Virginia. (4) Michel himself had an interview with the head miner in Holland, when the latter received orders to secure all the necessary equipment for the mining scheme. [Inserted handwritten note, at end of number (4): M did not understand that "royal mines" ie.gold + silver had to be reserved for the king. Every deed mentions this. (5) Then the Indian war of 1711 broke out, preventing Michel from locating definitely the (silver) mine. Hence delay. (6) The miners, though warned not to come till notified, became impatient and started out, because Graffenried had given the head miner and one or two others permission to come for the purpose of making a preliminary survey. (7) When G. reached London in the fall of 1713, after the death of Queen Anne (August 1, 1713), he found some forty miners there. (8) With great difficulty he secured work for some during the winter. They constructed a dam, which collapsed during a rainstorm. Others left without work, returned probably to Germany. (9) After consulting with Col. Blakiston, of the Board of Trade, the miners were persuaded to pool their money to pay at least part of their expenses to Virginia. (10) Two Virginia merchants were persuaded to advance the ["shortage" < deleted] additional money for their passage and provisions, with the understanding that the Governor should reimburse them for the money thus expended. The letters of the Governor show that it amounted to 150 pounds. (11) There was a further understanding that the miners thus transported and cared for by the Governor, should work for him for four years, to pay back to him the money he had advanced for their passage. The letters of the Governor show that, although they did not have the legal status of servants, yet he "put them in the way of paying their just debts." Moreover, after staying at Germanna four years, they entered in 1718 [1 Author's Comments: Peter Hitt's birth date was estimated at about 1690 by subtracting 25 years from the birth of his eldest
    child. Peter's place of birth may have been Siegen, Germany, although there is no proof of this.
    2 "Peter Hitt's Children," Journal of the Society of Germanna Colonies Volume 1, No. 3. Hereinafter cited as "Peter Hitt's
    Children".
    3 B. C. Holtzclaw, Germanna Record No. 1; Peter Hitt, John Joseph Martin, and Tillman Weaver of the 1714 Colony and
    their descendants (P. O. Box 693; Culpeper, VA 22701-0693: The Memorial Foundation of Germanna Colonies, Inc., July
    1961, 1982 Reprint). Hereinafter cited as Germanna Record No. 1.
    4 B. C. Holtzclaw, Germanna Record No. 5; Ancestry and Descendants of the Nassau-Siegen Immigrants to Virginia,
    1714-1750 (P.O. Box 693, Culpeper, Virginia, 22701-0693: The Memorial Foundation of the Germanna Colonies, Inc.,
    1964, Reprint 1978). Hereinafter cited as Germanna Record No. 5.
    5 Thomas J. C. Williams, A History of Washington County, Maryland, from Earliest Settlements to the Present Time;
    Including a History of Hagerstown (John M. Runk & L. R. Titsworth, 1906), (Author's File 4-7, 7-3). Hereinafter cited as
    Williams, History of Washington Co., MD.
    6 Historical Publishing Society, Five Hundred First Families of America, Fourth Edition (n.p.: Historical Publishing
    Society, 1972-1973). Hereinafter cited as Five Hundred First Families, 4th Edition.
    7 Author?s Comment: The book "Five Hundred First Families" states that: "Peter Hitt was one of the members of the colony
    who, in the election of 1741, voted for members of the House of Burgesses from Prince William County, and that the fact
    that he voted, showed that he was naturalized and a free-holder." This is incorrect, since no record of Peter Hitt being
    naturalized has been found and no record has been found that Peter voted in any election in Virginia.
    8 Spotsylvania County, Virginia, Will Book "A", 2 June 1724, p. 74.
    9 Stafford County, Virginia, Will Book 1729-1748, 18 October 1730, p. 22
    1. Peter1 HITT; born circa 1690 in Germany;1 married Elizabeth (...?...); died between 23
    March 1772 and 17 July 1772 in Germantown, Fauquier County, Virginia; i.e., between the date
    he wrote his will and the date his will was probated.2,3,4,5,6
    1. Peter Hitt came to the Virginia Colony in May 1714 and was placed at Germanna with twelve
    other German families. Peter's wife, Elizabeth, is presumed to have immigrated to Virginia at
    the same time, however, whether Peter and Elizabeth were married when they arrived in the
    Virginia Colony cannot be documented.
    2. In 1720 or 1721, Peter Hitt and the other 1714 colonists moved north from Germanna and
    settled on 1805 acres of land along Licking Run; land which was deeded to John Fishback,
    John Hoffman and Jacob Holtzclaw, the only members of the group that were naturalized.7
    The remaining members of the 1714 group were issued 99 year leases for their portions of the
    land which became known as Germantown. In 1724 in order to secure the land at
    Germantown, the colonists made oath and claimed their head-rights in the court at
    Spotsylvania County.8
    3. Peter Hitt was a witness to the will of Joseph Cowntz (Cuntze, Coons) another of the 1714
    immigrants.9
    10 Prince William County, Virginia, Deed Book "I", 7 February 1745, p. 12.
    11 Prince William County, Virginia, Deed Book "I", 27 October 1746, p. 233.
    12 Prince William County, Virginia, Order Book, 1754-1755, p. 137.
    13 Fauquier County, Virginia, Miscellaneous Records (Land Causes), 1759, p. 5.
    14 Fauquier County, Virginia, Deed Book 4, 22 April 1771, p. 178.
    15 Recorded Wills,
    4. Harman Fishback, in view of a marriage to be solemnized between himself and Mary Noe,
    widow, deeds to Peter Hitt 100 acres where Harman now lives and another 100 acres joining
    John Rector and Tillman Weaver in Germantown; test: Joseph Martin, William Coarns, John
    Kemper, George Dent.10
    5. Peter Hitt witnessed a deed from Henry Cuntz to Tilman Weaver for 100 acres in Germantown
    adjoining Peter Hitt and Tilman Weaver, land which was left to Henry by the will of his father,
    Joseph Cuntz, dec'd.11
    6. John Hoffman and Jacob Holtzclaw, the surviving trustees of the Germantown land, deeded the
    land to the twelve families on 14 September 1754.12
    7. Peter Hitt testified at court about the division of land among the 12 Germanna families at
    Germantown in the suit between Jacob Spilman and his mother, Mary Dent.13
    8. Peter Hitt, Jacob Weaver, Peter Kemper, all of Fauquier County, and Harman Fishback of
    Culpeper County deed to Tilman Martin 100 acres in Germantown, formerly set apart for the
    German glebe; test. Thomas Marshall, Tilman Weaver, Joseph Martin, Josiah Holtzclaw.14
    9. The possible wives of Peter Hitt are discussed in the Introductory remarks to this family
    history. It is known that Peter made an oath in a Spotsyvania Court that he: "came to Virginia
    to dwell in 1714 with his wife Elizabeth"; and that Elizabeth was still living in 1772 when
    Peter wrote his will. However, Elizabeth's surname is not known.
    10. Germanna was in Essex County until about 1721 when it was a part of Spotsylvania County
    and it remaind a part of Spotsylvania County until Orange County was formed in 1734. Based
    on the fact that the families moved to Germantown in 1720 or 1721, three of Peter and
    Elizabeth's children would have been born at Germanna and three at Germantown. When the
    first Germanna families moved to Germantown, it was in Stafford County, Virginia (now in
    Fauquier County).
    11. Peter Hitt's will was written 23 March 1772 and was proved on 27 July 1772. The text of the
    will is as follows:15
    In the name of God, Amen, this 23ed day of March in the year of our Lord one thousand
    seven hundred and seventy-two: I, Peter Hitt of the County of Fauquier, being weak of body,
    but of perfect mind and memory, Thanks be to God for it, do make and ordain this my last
    Will and Testament; That is to say I give and devise in the following manner and form:
    Imprimis: I give and bequest to Elizabeth, my beloved wife, all of my estate to use during her
    natural life.
    Item: I give to my son, John Hitt, my Negro woman Judy and My Negro boy George.
    Item: I give and bequeath to my son, Joseph Hitt, my Negro man called "Young Tom".
    Item: I give and bequeath to my son, Harman Hitt, my Negro girl Hannah and my Negro
    man called "Old Tom".
    Item: I give and bequeath to my son, Peter Hitt, my Negro boy called by the name Ben.
    Item: I give and bequeath to my daughter, Mary Rector, one hundred acres of land, being the
    plantation where I now live, and my Negro boy named Moses.
    Item: I give to my son, Henry Hitt, one hundred pounds cash, which is all he is to have of my
    estate.
    Item: My will and desire is that after the decease of my wife, that all my estate not herein
    mentioned be sold to the highest bidder, and the money arising therefrom be equally divided
    among all my children hereafter named: That is to say, John, Joseph, Harman, Peter, and
    Mary, and lastly, I do nominate and appoint my two eldest sons, Harman Hitt and Joseph
    Hitt, executors of this my Last Will and Testament. In Witness I have hereunto set my hand
    and seal the day and year above written.
    Signed
    Peter (P) Hitt
    In the presence of: Harman (X) Rector
    Joseph Taylor
    John Morgan
    Teste: H.L. Pearson, clerk, Circuit Court of Fauquier County, Virginia
    In the Court of Fauquier County this 27th day of July 1772. This will was proved by the
    oaths of Harman Rector and Joseph Taylor witness thereto and ordered to be recorded and
    on the motion of Harmon Hitt and Joseph Hitt, executors thereon, who made oath and
    executed legal bond. The law directs certificate be granted them for a probate through in
    due form. The law directs certificate is granted them for attaining a probate therof in due
    form.
    Teste: J. W. Burkett
    The children of Peter1 HITT and his wife, Elizabeth (...?...) were as follows:
    + 2. i. John2 HITT, born circa 1715 in Germanna, Essex County, Virginia; married first
    Sarah (...?...); married second Mary (...?...).
    + 3. ii. Joseph HITT, Sr., born circa 1717 in Germanna, Essex County, Virginia; married
    Mary Coons (Cuntze).
    + 4. iii. Henry HITT, born circa 1719 in Germanna, Essex County, Virginia; married
    Alice Katherine HOLTZCLAW.
    + 5. iv. Harmon HITT, born circa 1721 in Germantown, Stafford County, Virginia;
    married Mary WEAVER.
    + 6. v. Mary Ann HITT, born circa 1723 in Germantown, Stafford County, Virginia;
    married Jacob RECTOR.
    + 7. vi. Peter HITT, Jr., born circa 1726 in Germantown, Stafford County, Virginia;
    married Sarah JAMES.
    18 One source states that Joseph Hitt, Sr. died in 1807, however, it is believed he died prior to 1800 since he could not be
    found in the 1800 Federal Census.
    19 Beatrice Myers & Vada Phillips, Benjamin Hitt & Nancy Curnal, their Antecedents and Descendants (Texas: Private
    Publication, 2 August 1980), p. 71. Hereinafter cited as Myers & Phillips, Anc. & Desc. of Benjamin Hitt.
    20 B. C. Holtzclaw, Germanna Record No. 5, pp. 93-94.
    21 B. C. Holtzclaw, Germanna Record No. 1, p. 23-29, 37.
    22 "Peter Hitt's Children", p. 79.
    23 Virginia Magazine of History and Biography, Vol. 7, p.305.
    24 Heitman, Heitman's Register, Continental Army.
    25 Prince William County, Virginia, Deed Book I, p. 28.
    26 Ibid., p. 31.
    27 Ibid., p. 54
    28 Culpeper County, Virginia, Order Book 1752-1753, p. 8.
    29 Fauquier County, Virginia, Minute Book 1759-1761, p. 3.
    30 Culpeper County, Virginia, Deed Book 1, p. 323.
    3. Joseph2 HITT, Sr. (Peter1); born circa 1717 in Germanna, Essex County, Virginia; married
    Mary Coons (Cuntze), daughter of Joseph Coons(Cuntze) and Catherine Weaver, circa 1740
    in Fauquier County, Virginia; died after 1790 in Laurens County, South Carolina.18
    Joseph and his family are difficult to establish. The Germanna Records, the Jesse Martin
    manuscript, and other research notes have been used to develop his family.19,20,21,22
    1. Joseph served in the Fauquier County Militia in 1761 in Capt. William Edmond's Company.
    Joseph and his oldest son, John, were both Revolutionary soldiers and they served with
    Joseph's brothers, John and Harmon, in the same company. Joseph's nephew, John, Jr., served
    in the same company.23,24
    2. On 9 December 1745, Nathanial Hilling and Kezia his wife sold to Joseph Hitt 434 acres on
    branch Cedar Creek adjacent to Capt. William Russell, Rev. John Bell. Witnesses: William
    Hackney, Peter Hitt.25
    3. On 21 March 1746, Joseph Hitt and Mary his wife of Hamilton Parish sold 217 acres to John
    Hitt (his brother) of same for 1050 lbs of Tobacco. Original Patent to Nathaniel Hilling of
    May 10, 1725. Witnesses: Richard "R" Grubbs, Thomas Machen, Peter Hitt.26
    4. On 24 March 1746, Joseph Hitt, Planter, and Mary his wife transferred five acres to John
    Wright and Joseph Blackwell, church wardens of Hamilton Parish, for 10 shillings, 2 acres on
    Cedar Run, part of land bought of Nathaniel Hilling. Witnesses: Thomas Thornton, Benjamin
    Taylor.27
    5. On 28 May 1752, The last Will and Testament of John Holtzclaw was presented for probate
    by Jacob Holtsclaw, Executor. Jacob Holtzclaw and Joseph Hitt gave bond of administration
    and Joseph Hitt, with several others, was appointed to appraise the Holtzclaw estate.28
    6. On 24 May 1759, Joseph Hitt was appointed road supervisor for the Upper Marsh Road,
    which joined the lower Dum Friers Road.29
    7. On 27 May 1762, Joseph Hitt and Mary his wife, Harmon Kamper and Catherine his wife and
    Ann Elizabeth Weaver deeded to William Hunton, 100 acres of land adjacent to William
    Russell etal, land which had descended to Mary, Catherine and Elizabeth, sisters and heirs of
    Tillman Cowns dec'd.30
    8. On 24 September 1770, Joseph Hitt and Mary his wife sold to John Duncan 214 acres of land
    on Turkey Run adjacent to the land of Capt. William Russell, land being a part of a larger
    tract bought of Nathaniel Hilling. Witnesses: Thomas Marshall, Benjamin Garner and Elvin?
    Porter.31
    9. Joseph Hitt is listed with 218 acres in the 1753-1754 Rent Rolls of Prince William County,
    Virginia. Also listed were John Hitt 216 acres, Peter Hitt 500 acres, Peter Hitt, Jr. 275 acres,
    and Henry Hitt 200 acres. Joseph is listed in the 1770 Rent Rolls for Fauquier County,
    Virginia, with 214 acres of land. Also listed are John Hitt 214 acres, Peter Hitt, Jr. 275 acres,
    Peter Hitt, Sr. 200 acres, John Hitt, Jr. 53 acres, and Harman Hitt 500 acres.
    10. On 1 November 1771, Thomas, Lord Fairfax deeded to Joseph Hitt, Mary his wife and Elisha
    their son 158 acres of land in Fauquier County known as the manor of Leeds. This land,
    which was located near Horseskin Branch was "...for and during the natural life of said Joseph
    and the natural lives of Mary, his wife, and Elisha, his son, and any of these longest living."
    The yearly rent was set at 31 Shillings 7 Pence. It was specified that Joseph Hitt would build
    one good sufficient dwelling house and keep it in repair, and plant 150 good apple trees.32
    11. On 23 May 1774, b & S Bet. John Duncan & Elizabeth, his wife of Culp. Co. and Joseph
    Duncan, Sr. .. L30 .. tract in Ham. Par. .. bought by sd Duncan of Joseph Hitt .. 53 a .. oak on
    Marsh Road, joining Benj. Holtzclaw's land .. saplings in Bumbery's lin .. oak on sd. road near
    Turkey Run Church .. Signed: John Duncan, Elizabeth (X) Duncan. Wit: Jos. Blackwell,
    Thos. Keith, Samuel Blackwell. Rec. 26 Sept 1774, ack. by Grantors. Also: Alice, Elisha,
    Eve, Harmon, Henry, John, Peter HITT. It is probable that Harmon, Henry, John and Peter
    were Joseph's brothers; Elisha was Joseph's son, Alice was Alice Holtzclaw (wife of Henry);
    but Eve has not been identified.
    12. Joseph still owned the 158 acres of land at Manor of Leeds and was living on it in 1777 when
    he is listed in the Fauquier County, Virginia rent rolls. That same year he paid a Tithe but in
    1778 he did not and in 1783 he was taxed only on his personal property, a horse and three
    cows, but no tithable, which means that he no longer owned land in Virginia and that he had
    attained the age of 60 between 1777 and 1778. No records could be found for Joseph Hitt in
    Fauquier County after 1784 and it is believed that Joseph and his family had left the county.
    13. It is believed that Joseph moved to South Carolina after 1786 because the 1790 Federal Census
    for Laurens County, South Carolina, shows a Joseph Hitt living there with 2 males age 16 and
    up, 1 female, and no slaves listed for his household. It is believed that one of the males in the
    listing was Elisha, Joseph's son. No other records of Joseph has been found in deed indexes or
    in Probate Court records, testate or intestate.
    The children of Joseph2 HITT, Sr. and Mary Coons (Cuntze), all born in Fauquier County,
    Virginia, were as follows:
    16. i. John3 HITT; born circa 1740.33,34,35 John served in the Fauquier County Militia
    with his father in 1761, in Captain William Edmond's Company in the French and
    Indian War. It is believed that John and his brother, Peter, served in the 9th
    Regiment of the Pennsylvania Continental Line. The Pennsylvania Archives, Fifth
    Series, Vol. III, Harrisburg, 1906, lists the different regiments in the Pennsylvania
    Line: "A return of late Captain Henderson's Company of the Ninth Pennsylvania
    Regiment, commanded by Colonel Richard Butler. The whole engaged to serve
    during the war, September 10, 1778." Listed, page 411, is Private John Hitt, sick,
    Norristown, Montgomery County. In the same book, page 429, Muster Roll of
    Col. North's Company, 9th Pennsylvania Reg't in the service of the United States,
    commanded by Col. Richard Butler for April 1780; commissioned March 12,
    1778, John McKinney, Lieut.; John Hitt, sick, present. The Pennsylvania
    Archives, Fifth Series, Vol IV, Continental Line, The Invalid Regiment, June 20,
    1777-1783, Harrisburg, Pa, 1906, lists all soldiers who received depreciation pay
    for services in the war. In the same book; "A return of the officers & men
    belonging to the Pennsylvania Line in the Invalid Reg't, from June 1777 to
    November 15th, 1784 is John Hitt, sick, present. Again, same reference; page 98,
    A return of the officers & men belonging to the PA Line in the Invalid Reg't from
    June 1777 to Nov. 15th 1784; John Hitt - Com'd, Mar. '83 - end'd Nov. '83. The
    Jesse Martin Hitt Collection has a note to the effect that John Hitt fought at
    Brandywine Creek, although he is listed as John, Sr. Since that battle was fought
    in September 1777 and it involved troops from Virginia under Nathaniel Greene,
    as well as troops from Pennsylvania, it quite likely that is what brought the two
    brothers to Pennsylvania.36
    On 26 June 1786, A Fauquier County court "Ordered that the Sheriff pay John
    Hitt, son of Joseph, and Peter Hitt 800 lbs Tob, out of the fraction in his hands."37
    + 17. ii. Joseph HITT, Jr., born circa 1742/43.
    + 18. iii. Peter HITT, born circa 1745; married Mary (...?...).
    + 19. iv. Lazarus HITT, born circa 1750; married first Agnes MARTIN; married second
    Elizabeth (...?...).
    + 20. v. Mary HITT, married James Crockett.
    21. vi. James HITT; born circa 1766.38 James and his brother William are listed as
    independent tithables for Fauquier County, Virginia, in 1788. On 23 September
    1818, for $1260, Thompson Utterback and Elizabeth his wife deeded to William
    and James Hitt 115 acres on Bullocks Creek adjacent to Eleanor Marye, Joseph
    Hitt, Richard Baughan, and Coleman Brown.39
    22. vii. William HITT; born circa 1767.40 William and his brothers are listed as
    independent tithables for Fauquier County, Virginia, in 1786-1814. William also
    appears in the 1800 Tax List for Fauquier County, Virginia.41 On 23 September
    1818, for $1260, Thompson Utterback and Elizabeth his wife deeded to William
    and James Hitt 115 acres on Bullocks Creek adjacent to Eleanor Marye, Joseph
    Hitt, Richard Baughan, and Coleman Brown.42
    23. viii. Elisha HITT; born after 1767.43,44 Elisha was named as a son of Joseph and Mary
    in the deed from Lord Fairfax for land in the mannor of Leeds.45 Because he was
    listed last, it is believed this could indicate that either he was the youngest or
    possibly incapable, mental/physical, of handling his own affairs and his parents
    were caring for him.46 These are the only records of Elisha. It is believed that he
    is the second male listed with his father in the 1790 Federal Census.
    + 24. ix. Lilly Ann "Lillian" HITT, married William BALL.
    -------------------------------
    Lazarus3 HITT (Joseph2, Peter1); born circa 1750 in Fauquier County, Virginia; married
    Agnes MARTIN, daughter of Henry MARTIN and Mary Ann (...?...), circa 1772 in Virginia;
    married Elizabeth (...?...); died 2 August 1823 in Laurens County, South Carolina; buried in
    Laurens County, South Carolina.101,102,103,104
    1. During the American Revolution, Lazarus was a merchant in Fauquier County, Virginia. He
    furnished supplies to the Revolutionary Army.
    2. In 1777 and 1778 Lazarus Hitt paid Tithes in Fauquier County, Virginia on his own
    household. He is listed on the tax lists, for personal property but no land, as follows: 1782, one
    horse and two cows; 1783, two horses and four cows; and in 1784, two horses.
    3. In about 1785, Lazarus and his family moved to Laurens County, South Carolina where he is
    found in the 1790 Federal Census for Laurens County with 2 males over 16 years, 4 males
    under 16 years, 4 females, and no slaves.
    4. The 1800 Federal Census for Laurens County also lists Lazarus Hitt as head of houselhold
    with 1 male under 10, 1 male 10-16, 2 males 16-26, 1 male over 45, 1 female under 10, 1
    female 10-16, 1 female 16-26, and 1 female over 45.
    5. In December 1793, he sold 100 acres of land located on the waters of the Saluda River and on
    the north side of Banks Creek. He purchased 80 acres of land on Cane Creek from John Riley
    in December 1798.105
    6. Lazarus was found in the Bethabara Church, Bethel Baptist Association, records in 1802 as
    the "other messenger to the Association", other than the pastor. Lazarus was most likely a lay
    preacher, and was very active in the Baptist Church in Laurens County.
    Lazarus wrote his will in 1823 and it is recorded in Laurens County.106
    Lazarus? first wife, Agnes MARTIN, was born circa 1755 in Fauquier County, Virginia. She
    died in Laurens County, South Carolina.
    The children of Lazarus3 HITT and his first wife, Agnes MARTIN, were as follows:
    + 132. i. Jesse4 HITT, born circa 1775 in Fauquier County, Virginia; presumed to have
    married three times, only his third wife is known: Nancy HAMILTON.
    + 133. ii. Rev. Henry HITT, born circa 1774/75 in Fauquier County, Virginia; married
    Elizabeth Stephens BALL.
    + 134. iii. John HITT, born circa 1777 in Fauquier County, Virginia; married Sarah
    Frances BALL.
    + 135. iv. Sarah HITT, born circa 1779 in Fauquier County, Virginia; married Capt. Lewis
    BALL.
    + 136. v. Reuben Martin HITT, born 24 May 1781 in Fauquier County, Virginia; married
    first Martha HAMILTON; married second Nancy Ann HITT.
    137. vi. (...?...) HITT; born circa 1783 in Fauquier County, Virginia; married John
    GARLINGTON 28 April 1794 in Laurens County, South Carolina.
    + 138. vii. Benjamin B. HITT, born 15 August 1786 in Laurens County, South Carolina;
    married first Amelia "Millie" RUSHING; married second Sophia BUNYARD.
    Lazarus? second wife, Elizabeth (...?...), was born on 25 February 1779. She died on 23 July
    1859 in Pontotoc County, Mississippi, at age 80. She was buried in Cherry Creek Cemetery,
    Pontotoc County, Mississippi. Her tombstone inscription is: ?Elizabeth Hitt married Lazarus Hitt;
    2-25-1779 - 7-23-1859". After the death of her husband, Lazarus, Elizabeth moved to Pontotoc
    County, Mississippi with her daughter and son-in-law, William Drummond, where she remained
    until her death.
    The only known child of Lazarus3 HITT and his second wife, Elizabeth (...?...), is:
    139. i. Eve4 HITT; born 13 December 1813 in South Carolina; married William
    DRUMAND in Laurens County, South Carolina; buried in Cherry Creek
    Cemetery,, Pontotoc County, Mississippi. At the time of her father's death, Evie
    was about 10 years old. Martin Ball was appointed her guardian after her father's
    death. The guardianship ended in 1833; believed to be when she married. Eve is
    presumed to be the second wife of William Drummond and after their marriage
    they moved to Pontotoc County, Mississippi.107,108,109
    --------------------------------------
    136. Reuben Martin4 HITT (Lazarus3, Joseph2, Peter1); born 24 May 1781 in Fauquier County,
    Virginia; married first Martha HAMILTON, daughter of Robert HAMILTON, in Laurens
    County, South Carolina; married second Nancy Ann HITT, daughter of Larkin HITT and Polly
    (...?...), circa 1842; died between 1856 and 1860 in Webster County, Mississippi;246 buried in
    Gary Cemetery, Embry, Webster County, Mississippi, where a memorial tombstone was erected
    in 1972.247,248
    1. Reuben moved with his parents to Laurens County, South Carolina in 1785, where he lived
    until the death of his first wife, Martha.
    2. In 1816 after the death of his first wife, Martha, Reuben moved with his children, four sons
    and two daughters, to Calhoun County, Mississippi.
    3. In 1842 he returned to Laurens County to marry Nancy Hitt, his second wife. They moved to
    Choctaw County (now Webster County), Mississippi where their children were born.
    4. The 1850 Federal Census for Choctaw County lists Reuben Hitt, 70, born Virginia; Nancy
    (wife), 28, born S.C.; Children, all born in Mississippi: Sarah, 7; John 3; and Martin, 1. Also
    living with the family was: Rebecca Hitt, 33, born in South Carolina, probably the half-sister
    of Nancy and daughter of Larkin and his first wife.
    5. The 1860 Federal Census for Chocktaw County lists Reuben's widow Nancy Hitt, 35, born
    S.C.; and her children, all born in Mississippi: Sallie, 15; Henry 14; Martin, 12; Nancy 6; and
    Washington 4.
    Reuben?s first wife, Martha HAMILTON was born circa 1784.
    The children of Reuben Martin4 HITT and Martha HAMILTON were as follows:
    + 615. i. Lazarus5 HITT, born circa 1801 in Laurens County, South Carolina; married
    Edna FACHIE.
    + 616. ii. Martha HITT, born in Laurens County, South Carolina; married Wesley
    SMITH.
    617. iii. Larkin HITT; Larkin died at the age of one and one-half years.249
    + 618. iv. James HITT, born 23 January 1810 in Laurens County, South Carolina; married
    Martha PARKER.
    619. v. William HITT; born circa 1812 in Laurens County, South Carolina; died circa
    1830 in Embry, Webster County, Mississippi; buried in Gary Cemetery, Embry,
    Webster County, Mississippi. William was 18 years old when he died. It is said
    --------------------------------
    615. Lazarus5 HITT (Reuben4, Lazarus3, Joseph2, Peter1); born circa 1801 in Laurens County,
    South Carolina; married Edna Fachie; died circa 1859 in Mississippi; buried in Pleasant Hill
    Cemetery, Near Slate Springs, Calhoun County, Mississippi.300
    1. Lazarus can be found in the 1850 Census for Calhoun, Chickasaw County, Mississippi.
    Lazarus? wife, Edna FACHIE, was born circa 1796.
    The children of Lazarus5 HITT and Edna FACHIE were as follows:301
    + 1763. i. Peter Whitfield6 HITT, born circa 1819 in South Carolina; married Amelia
    EASLEY.
    1764. ii. Betsey HITT.
    + 1765. iii. Reuben Washington HITT, born 25 February 1827 in Mississippi.
    + 1766. iv. Elizabeth Annette HITT, born 7 December 1831 in Elkton, Rockingham
    County, Virginia; married Thaddeus Warsaw RUSSELL.
    ---------------------------------
    1763. Peter Whitfield6 HITT (Lazarus5, Reuben4, Lazarus3, Joseph2, Peter1); born circa 1819 in
    South Carolina; married Amelia Easley.245
    Peter?s wife, Amelia EASLEY, was born circa 1824 in Alabama. Amelia's mother was Nancy
    Easley born in 1783.
    The children of Peter Whitfield6 HITT and Amelia EASLEY were as follows:
    3416. i. Francis M.7 HITT; born circa 1841.
    + 3417. ii. James Whitfield HITT, born circa 1844.
    3418. iii. Nancy HITT; born circa 1848.
    3417. James Whitfield7 HITT (Peter6, Lazarus5, Reuben4, Lazarus3, Joseph2, Peter1); born
    circa 1844; married an unknown person.
    1. James was living in Bowie County, Texas in 1880.
    The only known child of James Whitfield7 HITT and an unknown spouse is:
    5025. i. John Henry8 HITT; born circa 1871 in Texas.
    In doing a bit of research yesterday I found a couple articles that was interesting and this goes to show you as I have said before WHERE DOES IT SAY THAT!! Gene genelea@cox.net At 5.7 m. is a junction with a dirt road. Left here to the approximate SITE or NEW POST, 1 m., where Governor Alexander Spotswood (1676-1740) maintained a furnace for the manufacture of utensils from the pig iron produced at Germanna and had headquarters for the postal service while he was deputy postmaster general of the Colonies. The large brick house later built here was the home of Spotswood's grandson, General Alexander Spotswood (1751-1818). Colonel William Byrd, in A Progress to the Mittes, tells of visiting here in 1732:'The colonel . . . carried us directly to his air furnace . . . The use of it is to melt his sow iron in order to cast it into sundry utensils ... which . . . can be afforded at twenty shilling a ton, and delivered at people's own homes. And, being cast from the sow iron, are much better than those which come from England.' Colonel Byrd had found Spotswood, at Germanna, 'very frank in communicating all his dear-bought experience ... For his part, he wished there were many more iron works i! n the country, provided the parties concerned would preserve a constant harmony among themselves' in order to be 'better able to manage the workmen and reduce their wages to what was just and reasonable.' Left from Culpeper on State 3, an asphalt road, to Germanna Bridge over the Rapidan, 14.4 m.; L. 0.7 m. on a dirt road to the site of GERMANNA, where a crumbling stone chimney and half -buried foundations are reminders of Virginia's first industrial village. Here lived the miners brought from the German Palatinate by Governor Alexander Spotswood in 1714. When the governor's efforts to have iron deposits developed as a public enterprise failed, he lent a willing ear to the private schemes of adventurers, one of whom was the Swiss Baron von Graffenreid. But by the time the Germans arrived in the spring of 1714, von Graffenreid had returned to Switzerland, and the governor was beset by difficulties. Fearful of the hostile council's learning of his 'risque of Censure ... for transporting Forreigners into these parts,' he proposed having them settled at this point as a barrier against Indian attacks. The council ordered a road cleared and two cannon dragged through'the wild woods!,' and set up on a' stockade of stakes stuck in the ground ... and of a substance to bear out a musket shot.' That summer the thrifty Germans had 'nine houses, built all in a row, and before every house, about twenty feet distant from it, . . . small sheds built for their hogs and hens, so that the hogsties and houses make a street.' In 1720 this from thier village became the seat of the newly-created Spotsylvania County. By 1722, when the governor retired, he had, through shrewd grants to subordinates to be held in trust for his own use, accumulated more than 85,000 acres of 'excellent Land among ye Little Mountains.' Here he lived in style suited to his lordly tastes. When the Germans moved farther north, slaves worked the iron enterprises, supervised by a 'master.' Here was his' enchanted castle,' described by William Byrd II, with its terraced gardens, marble fountain, spacious drawing rooms 'elegantly set off with pier glasses' and where 'a brace of tame deer ran famil! iarly through the house.' In 1732 the little county seat was abandoned for the growing town of Fredericksburg. Discouraged by a Parliament fearful that Colonial manufactures would interfere with British exports, the industrial activities dwindled after Spotswood's death in 11740. FORT CHRISTANNA Fort Christanna, the first foothold of the white man in what is now Brunswick County, Virginia, was erected in 1714 during Alexander Spotswood's administration as Royal Governor. In August 1714, by authority of the General Assembly, Governor Spotswood established Fort Christanna on the rising ground above the banks of the southside of the Meherrin River. The fort was named in honor of Christ and Queen Anne, the English Queen. The purpose for the establishment of Fort Christanna was education, religion, commerce and military. Governor Spotswood appointed the Reverend Charles Griffin as schoolmaster to educate and christianize the Indian children in the first Christian Indian School in Virginia. November 16, 1714, at the request of Governor Spotswood, the General Assembly passed an "Act for the better regulation of the Indian trade." March 1715, Governor Spotswood traveled to the location of the fort. On this trip, he completed the building of the fort itself. Now the frontier was protected from unfriendly Indians. May 22, 1924, the Society of Colonial Dames of America in the State of Virginia, marked the site of Fort Christanna with the education of a monument to Brunswick County with the hope that it may be a source of patriotic pride and interest to generations to come, and keep alive a proper appreciation of heroes of colonial days to whom the country owes so much. 1979-1981. Dr. Mary C. Beaudrz conducted an archaeological "dig" at Fort Christanna under the sponsorship of the Brunswick Historical Society. Many items and illustrations from the "dig" can be seen at the Brunswick County Museum located on the Courthouse Square in Lawrenceville, VA. Fort Christanna is located about two miles south of Lawrenceville, off Route 46/ Christanna Highway on Fort Hill Road. Contributed by: Van Doyle, educator of Virginia History and citizen of Brunswick County. Wording as I found it! In the name of God, Amen, this 23ed day of March in the year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and seventy-two: I, Peter Hitt of the County of Fauquier, being weak of body, but of perfect mind and memory, Thanks be to God for it, do make and ordain this my last Will and Testament; That is to say I give and devise in the following manner and form: Imprimis: I give and bequest to Elizabeth, my beloved wife, all of my estate to use during her natural life. Item: I give to my son, John Hitt, my Negro woman Judy and My Negro boy George. Item: I give and bequeath to my son, Joseph Hitt, my Negro man called "Young Tom". Item: I give and bequeath to my son, Harman Hitt, my Negro girl Hannah and my Negro man called "Old Tom". Item: I give and bequeath to my son, Peter Hitt, my Negro boy called by the name Ben. Item: I give and bequeath to my daughter, Mary Rector, one hundred acres of land, being the plantation where I now live, and my Negro boy named Moses. Item: I give to my son, Henry Hitt, one hundred pounds cash, which is all he is to have of my estate. Item: My will and desire is that after the decease of my wife, that all my estate not herein mentioned be sold to the highest bidder, and the money arising therefrom be equally divided among all my children hereafter named: That is to say, John, Joseph, Harman, Peter, and Mary, and lastly, I do nominate and appoint my two eldest sons, Harman Hitt and Joseph Hitt, executors of this my Last Will and Testament. In Witness I have hereunto set my hand and seal the day and year above written. In the presence of: Harman (X) Rector Signed Peter (P) Hitt Joseph Taylor John Morgan Probate: Teste: H.L. Pearson, clerk, Circuit Court of Fauquier County, Virginia, Will Book #1, page #200, Circuit Court of Fauquier County, Virginia. In the Court of Fauquier County this 27th day of July 1772. This will was proved by the oaths of Harman Rector and Joseph Taylor witness thereto and ordered to be recorded and on the motion of Harmon Hitt and Joseph Hitt, executors thereon, who made oath and executed legal bond. The law directs certificate be granted them for a probate through in due form. The law directs certificate is granted them for attaining a probate therof in due form.Teste: J. W. Burkett




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  • Change Date: 20 Mar 2002 at 01:00:00



    Marriage 1 Elizabeth OTTERBACH b: 1689 in , , , Germany
    • Married: ABT 1714 in , Fauquier, Va.
    Children
    1. Has Children John HITT Sr. b: 1715 in Germanna, Essex, Va.
    2. Has Children Joseph HITT Sr. b: 1717 in Germanna, Essex, Va.
    3. Has Children Henry HITT b: ABT 1717/1719 in Germanna, Essex, Va.
    4. Has Children Harman HITT b: ABT 1721 in Germantown,Stafford, Va.
    5. Has Children Mary Ann HITT b: 1723 in Germantown, Stafford Va.
    6. Has Children Peter HITT II b: ABT 1726 in Germantown, Stafford,Va.

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