The German state of Bavaria
is the ancestral home of the Demke family. Demke is a local
name, first used as a surname for someone who lived in Bavaria.
Early Origins of the Demke family
The surname Demke was first found in Bavaria
, where this surname surfaced in mediaeval times as one of the notable families of the region. From the 13th century onwards the name was associated with the great social and economic evolution which made this territory a landmark contributor to the development of the nation.
Early History of the Demke family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Demke research.Another 267 words (19 lines of text) covering the years 1775, 1776, 1635, 1669, 1746, 1655, 1728, 1670, 1704, 1644, 1709, 1663 and 1721 are included under the topic Early Demke History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Demke Spelling Variations
In the medieval era, many different cultural groups lived in the German states. There are thus many regional variations of German surnames from that era. Westphalians
spoke Low German, which is similar to modern Dutch. Many German names carry suffixes that identify where they came from. Others have phrases attached that identify something about the original bearer. Other variations in German names resulted from the fact that medieval scribes worked without the aid of any spelling rules. The spelling variations
of the name Demke include Thoma, Thoman, Thom, Thoms, Toma, Thomas, Tomas, Thomasius, Thoeman, Thome, Thomen, Thomme, Thomm, Demel, Dehmel and many more.
Early Notables of the Demke family (pre 1700)
Prominent among members of the name Demke in this period include Frederic Count de Thoms (1669-1746), a German art collector; Peter Lorenz Thomas von Langenhardt (mid 17th century), Secretary of the Johannite Order of knights at Sonnenburg; Christian Thomas (1655-1728, known as Thomasius)... Another 43 words (3 lines of text) are included under the topic Early Demke Notables in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Demke family to the New World and Oceana
European migration to North America began in the mid-17th century and continued unabated until the mid-20th. Many Bavarians made the long trip to escape poverty or persecution based on their religious beliefs. The chance for tenant
farmers to own their own land was also a major drawing card. They settled all across the United States in Pennsylvania, Texas, New York, Illinois, and California. Many came to Canada also, settling in Ontario and the prairie provinces. Analysis of immigration records has shown some of the first Demkes to arrive in North America, and among them were: Matheus Thomas, who sailed for America in 1709 with his wife and daughters. Heinrich Thomas also came in 1709; settling in Carolina of Pennsylvania. Johann Philip Thoma came to Philadelphia in 1764.