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An excerpt from www.HouseOfNames.com archives copyright © 2000 - 2015

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

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Spelling variations of this family name include: Gehra, Gehren, Gehring, Gera, Geradon, Geradts and many more.

First found in Hamburg, where the name contributed greatly to the development of an emerging nation which would later play a large role in the tribal and national conflicts of the area. In later years the name branched into many houses, each playing a significant role in the local social and political affairs. The name is also connected to several place names in the Holstein region.


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This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Gerke research. Another 170 words(12 lines of text) covering the years 1566, 1590, 1610, 1770, and 1844 are included under the topic Early Gerke History in all our PDF Extended History products.

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More information is included under the topic Early Gerke Notables in all our PDF Extended History products.

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Some of the first settlers of this family name were:

Gerke Settlers in United States in the 19th Century


  • Johannes Gerke, who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1803
  • Maria Gertrud Gerke, who landed in Pennsylvania in 1803
  • John P Gerke, aged 27, landed in Missouri in 1839
  • William Gerke, aged 30, arrived in Missouri in 1842
  • Maria Elisabeth Gerke, aged 66, arrived in America in 1843

Gerke Settlers in Australia in the 19th Century


  • Wilhelm Ottomar Gerke, aged 28, arrived in South Australia in 1847 aboard the ship "Hermann von Beckerath"

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  • Friedrich Clemens Gerke (1801-1888), German writer, journalist, musician and pioneer of telegraphy, he revised the Morse code in 1848 to the standard used today
  • Jack Gerke DSO, AM (b. 1916), Australian Second World War and Korean War veteran, recipient of the Distinguished Service Order for bravery


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  1. 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).
  2. Bolton, Charles Knowles. Bolton's American Armory. Baltimore: Heraldic Book Company, 1964. Print.
  3. Fogleman, Aaron Spencer. Journeys German Immigration, Settlement and Political Culture in Colonial America 1717-1775. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 1986. Print. (ISBN 978-0812215489).
  4. Gritzner, M. Handbuch der heraldischen Terminologie in zwölf Zungen. Nürnberg: 1890. Print.
  5. Zieber, Eugene. Heraldry in America. Philadelphia: Genealogical Publishing Co. Print.
  6. Götze, Alfred. Familiennamen im badischen Oberland. Heidelberg: C. Winter, 1918. Print.
  7. Jones, Henry Z. Palatine Families of New York 2 Volumes. Rockland, ME: Picton Press, 2001. Print. (ISBN 978-0961388829).
  8. Bahlow, Hans and Edda Gentry. Translation Dictionary of German Names 2nd Edition. Madison: University of Wisconsin, 2002. Print.
  9. Tarneller, Josef. Zur Namenkunde Tirolen Familiennamen. Bozen: Buchhandlung, 1923. Print.
  10. Siebmacher, J.J. Siebmachers Wappenbuch. München, Battenberg: 1975. Print.
  11. ...

The Gerke Family Crest was acquired from the Houseofnames.com archives. The Gerke 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 26 May 2013 at 09:42.

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