Hereditary surnames began to be used in Germany during the 12th century. Names like Segell, that came from the name of the job done by their initial bearer, were very popular. Segell is an occupational name for a maker or purveyor of wax seals of the type commonly used to certify the authenticity of letters and documents until early this century, or a person responsible for the sealing and signing of official documents, a position known as Siegelbeamter. The name comes from the German word "siegel," which means "seal."
Early Origins of the Segell family
Bavaria, where the family gained a significant reputation for its contributions to the emerging mediaeval society. The name became prominent as many branches of the family founded separate houses and acquired estates in various regions, always elevating their social status by their great contributions to society. Individual bearers of the name first mentioned in ancient chronicles include Tetmarus Sigeler of Stettin in Pomerania (c.1263,) and Sigler of Wuerzburg (c.1383). The name literally refers to the position of "Siegelbeamter," responsible for seals and the signing of documents.
Early History of the Segell family
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Segell 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 Segell include Siegel, Sigel, Sigl, Siegl, Siegler, Sigler, Siglin, Sieglin, Siegelin, Sigelin, Siglen, Sieglen, Siegele and many more.
Early Notables of the Segell family (pre 1700)
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Migration of the Segell family to the New World and Oceana
Between the mid-17th and mid-20th centuries, German settlers arrived in North America by the thousands. Persecution based on religion and poverty were great motivators in this large-scale migration. So too was the opportunity for tenant farmers to own their own land. Ample land and opportunity awaited the settlers who went to such states as Pennsylvania, Texas, New York, Illinois, and California, as well as Ontario and the prairie provinces of Canada. Research into the origins of individual families in North America revealed records of the immigration of a number of people bearing the name Segell or a variant listed above: Jacob Siegel, who came to Pennsylvania in 1727. Johannes Siglin settled in Pennsylvania in 1753 with his wife and five children, as did John Siegel in 1765.
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