The History and Genealogy of the Immigrant Casimir Ortner

Opens in the 20th century, leads the reader state by state to the colonial days of Penn's Colony, and therefrom to Einselthum in the late 1660's. Th is genealogy is written in chapter format, delineating the lives of each descendant and their families. Th e Table of Contents which appears following the Index will be a valuable guide to the reader, It was in 1747 when Casimir Orthner, a successful landowner and vintner, a man of 56, well past his prime for such a grueling sea voyage, left the Vaterland for the Neuland. What were his reasons for uprooting his family; leaving extended family and friends behind for all time; undertaking the perilous journey across the ocean; facing the cultural changes awaiting them in the British Colonies? Devastation by war, oppression by petty rulers, the destructive winter of 1708-1709, religious bickerings and harangues, possibly a strong desire to secure freedom for his posterity; any one or combination of these were probably Casimir's reasons for leaving the Palatinate. At a time when most peasants were illiterate, he could write - evidenced by his signature on the ship's passenger list! Casimir Ortner, the patriarch, only lived in the new world for11 short years, leaving behind his widow and several children. Th is book is their history...his legacy. They were "the common folk." His descendants have been found in Pennsylvania, Maryland, South Carolina, Alabama, Ohio, Indiana, Tennessee, Minnesota, and Missouri...and were among the many, many unsung heroes and heroines who played a large part in the evolution of our country: Indian Skirmishes, Militia Service, Revolutionary War, War of 1812, and the Civil War. Their history may not be marked by wonderful gift s of fortune or fame; nor public distinction in the Old World or the New; there are few chronicles of their struggles and contributions during the birthing years of our nation, the hardships endured. Old records are scant, difficult to come by, and often difficult to read. In some instances, I have deferred to the preponderance of the evidence! No work of this magnitude is without errors. I have chronicled as accurately as possible all I have uncovered during my 40+ years of research about their lives in the New World. I have had to unearth, sift and sieve through mountains of records, dust and piece together shards of their history, much like an archeologist, to relate their time in this country. They left only a few clues to attest to their patriotism; readily defending their chosen country; generations each serving whenever the need arose, at whatever cost and detriment to their families.

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