Family Tree

The Wittrock Family Tree covers fifteen generations of Wittrocks that originated in the farming community of Brockdorf near the town of Dinklage in the Oldenburg region of Germany. Early records such as tax rolls and farm lists show that a cottage farmer (Kötter) named Wittrock lived in Brockdorf in 1593 and another Kötter named Herman Wittrock was there in 1663. Both of these individuals are probably our ancestors.

The earliest know ancestor to whom we can trace our roots through church records was Johann Wittrock, a Kötter who was born in Brockdorf about 1636. Earlier church records for Brockdorf do not exist. It is very likely that Johann inherited his farm from Hermann Wittrock because there were only 29 farms in Brockdorf and only one farm was owned under he Wittrock name.

The Wittrock farm in Brockdorf passed down through the family for at least 9 generations. In the 9th generation, Anton Henry Wittrock sold the family farm in 1885 and emigrated to America. Three of his sisters also emigrated between 1875 and 1885. Our family tree lists the descendants of the four immigrants as well as their Wittrock ancestors back to about 1560. The tree also includes several branches of Wittrocks that remained in Germany.

In two instances our Wittrock name was passed on through the female members of the Wittrock line. This practice, which was common in Germany at that time, is a product of the old German property and inheritance laws. Farms were identified by a family surname. A farm could be inherited only by the eldest son and in most cases could not be split up among several heirs. When there was no male heir, the farm could pass to the eldest daughter, but only if her husband took his wife's surname as his own. That way the farm stayed under the family name. Sons who did not inherit often became "Heuermann" (hired man or tenant farmer), took up a trade, or emigrated.

Click here to see a detailed family tree.

The outline tree format is an indentured list with each person's generation number shown before their name. Spouses are indicated with a "+" symbol.

The ancestry data presented here is a work in progress. Family members who would like to share their branch of the family tree with other Wittrock descendants are invited to contact the webmaster.

To protect the privacy of living family members, their birth and marriage dates and place names are not included on this website.


Contact: To correct the information on this page or submit new information, please contact the webmaster


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