Nestled between the Rhine and Wesser rivers is the ancient German region of Westphalia
, the home of the name Haehmerstein. When hereditary surnames
were adopted in this region, after the 12th century, names that were derived from localities were quite common. These "local" surnames originally denoted the proprietorship of the village or estate. When coupled with the German preposition von, which means from or of, local
names can indicate that the initial bearer of the name was an aristocrat. However, in modern times, the use of the preposition has often long since been dropped from use. The Haehmerstein family originally lived in one of the numerous places in Germany
named Ham or Hamm. Haehmerstein is also a Jewish surname particularly associated with the town of Hammerstein, in what was formerly East Prussia
, which once had a large Jewish population. Haehmerstein is a topographic
surname, a type of local surname that was given to a person who resided near a physical feature such as a hill, stream, church, or type of tree. The toponym Haehmerstein is composed of the Old German word hamar,
which means rock
which means stone.
Early Origins of the Haehmerstein family
The surname Haehmerstein was first found in Westphalia
, where the name Hammerstein emerged in mediaeval times as one of the notable families of the region. From the 13th century the surname was identified with the great social and economic evolution which made this territory a landmark contributor to the development of the nation.
Early History of the Haehmerstein family
This web page shows only a small excerpt of our Haehmerstein research.Another 136 words (10 lines of text) covering the years 1611 and 1675 are included under the topic Early Haehmerstein History in all our PDF Extended History products and printed products wherever possible.
Haehmerstein Spelling Variations
One can encounter great variation in the spelling of surnames: in early times, spelling in general, and thus the spelling of names was not yet standardized; and later, spellings would change with branching and movement of families. Variations of the name Haehmerstein include Hammerstein, Hamerstein, Hahmmerstein, Hahmerstein, Haammerstein, Haamerstein, Haemmerstein, Haemerstein, Haehmmerstein, Haehmerstein and many more.
Early Notables of the Haehmerstein family (pre 1700)
More information is included under the topic Early Haehmerstein Notables in all our PDF Extended History products
and printed products wherever possible.
Migration of the Haehmerstein family to the New World and Oceana
Many Germans emigrated across the Atlantic to seek better lives in North America. This great migration began in the middle of the 17th century and continued into the 20th century. Resettlement was particularly attractive to those from Westphalia
as a means of escape from poverty and religious persecution. For many Westphalian
farmers, the chance to own one's own land was also a major incentive. The process of the widespread colonization of the United States began in 1650, when many immigrants from Germany
settled in pockets in Pennsylvania, Texas, New York, Illinois, and California. In Canada, German settlements centered around Ontario and the Prairie provinces. Among them: Jacob Hammerstein who arrived in Pennsylvania in 1754; Samuel Hammerstein who arrived in Washington County, Pa. in 1857; Johann Adam Hammerstein, accompanied by his wife, Margarethe Ramroth, who arrived in America in 1868.
The Haehmerstein Motto
The motto was originally a war cry or slogan. Mottoes first began to be shown with arms in the 14th and 15th centuries, but were not in general use until the 17th century. Thus the oldest coats of arms generally do not include a motto. Mottoes seldom form part of the grant of arms: Under most heraldic authorities, a motto is an optional component of the coat of arms, and can be added to or changed at will; many families have chosen not to display a motto.
Motto: Spectemur agendo
Motto Translation: Let us be judged by our actions.