Rambling Through the Byways and Crossroads of Genealogy, DNA, and Ethnicity

Mark Hagenbuch as a Continental officer (American Revolutionary War)
Detail of a photo of Mark Hagenbuch in the uniform of a Continental officer (American Revolutionary War).

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3 Responses

  1. Robert Hagenbuch says:

    Very good read, Mark! I really appreciate your, and Andrew’s dedication to this weekly publication!

  2. Bruce Kistler says:

    Nice piece. The parallels with my Kistler line are striking. Most extraordinary is that (we think) the Kistlers migrated from Switzerland (near Zurich) to Germany about 1652 and then to Philadelphia in 1737. I have as much Scotch and Welsh DNA as Swiss/German.

  3. Bob Carl says:

    Hi Mark,

    Great essay! I am in the same boat. I have German, Irish, Scottish, English, Dutch, and even Finnish ancestry, but I always identify as German. And what is “German?” Historically, as you touch upon, Germans were a group of related, once tribal people, who spoke often rather different dialects of a common language. Although one can see antecedents of Germany in the medieval The Holy Roman Empire, there really wasn’t a Germany in the modern sense until the 19th Century. Back to tribes: Swiss are Alemannic Germans, quite distinct from the Franks of Hesse, or the Saxons of Hamburg, and closely related to the “French” living in Alsace and Germans living in Baden-Württemberg. So Hagenbuchs descend from the Alemanni and their predecessors, the Suebi or Swabians. Julius Caesar gives a good account of his encounters with the Suebic King Ariovistus. It’s quite a heritage. Our remote ancestors surely fought Caesar, but they lost. Three centuries later the Alemanni would invade the then decaying Romam Empire.

    Best regards,

    Bob Carl

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