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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright © 2000 - 2014

Where did the German Wahlers family come from? What is the German Wahlers family crest and coat of arms? When did the Wahlers family first arrive in the United States? Where did the various branches of the family go? What is the Wahlers family history?

The German surname Wahlers emerged in the lands that formed the modern state of Lower Saxony, which is presently bordered by the North Sea, the Hartz mountains and the Elbe and Ems rivers. Lower Saxony was previously a medieval Saxon dukedom. In the Middle Ages, many of the Saxon lands were a part of the Holy Roman Empire, which was characterized by the Feudal System. Before this era, people were known only by a single name. However, as the population increased and travelers set out on their journeys, it became necessary for people to adopt a second name to identify themselves. Many people, such as the Wahlers family, adopted the name of their feudal occupation as their surname. However, an occupational name did not become a hereditary surname until the office or type of employment became hereditary. The surname Wahlers was an occupational name for an elector. In medieval Germany, electors were the ecclesiastical and temporal princes who elected the Holy Roman Emperor. Ancient records reveal the name Wahlers is derived from the Old German word wala, which means choice.

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Spelling variations of this family name include: Wahle, Wahlen, Wahler, Wahls, Wahlers, Waler and many more.

First found in Oldenburg, where the name emerged in mediaeval times as one of the prominent families of these regions. From the 13th century on the surname was identified with the great social and economic evolution which made this territory a landmark contributor to the development of the Prussian nation. Chronicles first mention J. Wale of Greifswald, Pomerania in 1322 and Gerd Waler of Anklam in 1406, but the oldest branches of the family are mentioned as having their seat in Oldenburg and even earlier in nearby Doetlingen.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Wahlers research. Another 257 words(18 lines of text) covering the years 1753 and 1753 are included under the topic Early Wahlers History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Another 45 words(3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Wahlers Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Some of the first settlers of this family name or some of its variants were: Johann Caspar Wahl, who arrived in Philadelphia in 1754; many others followed in 1842; 1844; 1855; 1871; and 1898. Melchior Wahl came with his wife Anna Clara and their two children to Philadelphia in 1808.

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  1. Hanks, Patricia and Flavia Hodges. A Dictionary of Surnames. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1988. Print. (ISBN 0-19-211592-8).
  2. Jones, George F. The Germans of Colonial Georgia 1733-1783 Revised edition. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1986. Print. (ISBN 0806311614).
  3. Siebmacher, J.J. Siebmacher's Grosses Wappenbuch 35 Volumes. Germany: Bauer & Raspe. Print.
  4. Passenger Lists of Vessels Arriving at Galveston Texas 1896-1951. National Archives Washington DC. Print.
  5. Tobler-Meyer, Wilhelm. Familiennamen der Ostschweiz. Zürich: 1894. Print.
  6. Göbel, Otto. Niederdeutsche Familiennamen der Gegenwart Wolfshagen-Schäbentz. Franz: Westphal, 1936. Print.
  7. Weis, Frederick Lewis, Walter Lee Sheppard and David Faris. Ancestral Roots of Sixty Colonists Who Came to New England Between 1623 and 1650 7th Edition. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1992. Print. (ISBN 0806313676).
  8. Bentley, Elizabeth P. Passenger Arrivals at the Port of New York 1820-1829. Baltimore, Maryland: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1999. Print.
  9. Rupp, Daniel L. A Collection of Upwards of Thirty Thousand Names of German, Swiss, Dutch, French and Other Immigrants to Pennsylvania from 1727 to 1776. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 2000. Print. (ISBN 978-0806303024).
  10. Bahlow, Hans. Mecklenburgisches Namenbüchlein Ein Führer durch Mecklenburgs Familiennamen. Rostock: Carl Hinstorffs Verlag, 1932. Print.
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The Wahlers Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Wahlers Family Crest was drawn according to heraldic standards based on published blazons. We generally include the oldest published family crest once associated with each surname.

This page was last modified on 14 June 2013 at 11:22.

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