Nachdem die Quäcker zue Kriegsheim vor mahlen Menisten
gewesen, und nach und nach von dieser auf jene närrische
Secte gefallen, also haben selbige auch in specie kein Concession;
sie bezahlen zwahren von hierunten Specification Capital, wie
andere und thavon(?) die Schazung, die Türkensteuer, das
Schuzgelt, den Groß und Kleinen Zehenden, wie auch Kirchen-
und Schulzinse geben sie, ohne Execuons-Zwang nicht, und wenn
mann es solchergestalt mit Gewaldt von ihnen nimbt, sagen sie,
mann habe es ihnen gestohlen, der
Euer hochgeborener Gnaden und Excellenz
475 fl. Henrich Gerhardts
Hochheim, den 11. August 1684
Now that the Quakers of Kriegsheim, previously Mennonites, have little by little fallen away from one crazy sect (cult) to follow another, therefore they too have no concession, they do however pay the specification capital listed below, like others do, but they don't pay the assessment, the Turkish war tax, the protection money, the large and small tithes, or the church and school tax without a court order, and if you use this kind of force to collect the taxes from them, they say that you've stolen it; regarding the duties of night watchman, they are as well unwilling to do as does every other citizen does; there are also constant complaints against them; to sum it up, they are a type of people who irritate many, and who respect and serve no one but themselves; therefore, for these reasons and many more, it is wished that they would trade their belongings to other people, those things being desirable in this town, and which can not be purchased with money, (and) that they would follow our desire and leave the area.
Your highborn Grace and Excellence (Schmal is referring to himself, similar to "Yours truly")
475 fl. Henrich Gerhardts
Hochheim, the 11th August 1684
COMMENTS AND OTHER MENTION
"Hochgebohrner" is not the title of this document, it is simply the salutation, which is very respectful. I have a copy of the original from the Generallandesarchiv in Karlsruhe, Germany. It is item number 4337 fol 42. This document was written in old script German, and archaic or local spellings and terminology were used. The following transcript and translation are therefore reasonable, but not necessarily perfect. We have endeavored to create as literal a translation as possible while still making it understandable in English.
Hans Peter Umstatt is not included on this list of Mennonites who converted to Quakerism in 1684, written just one year before he left for America. IF Nicholas of the 1661 Kriegsheim census was our Nick, and IF he was the father of Johannes Nicolaus confirmed Lutheran in 1663, then Johannes Nicolaus was Hans Peter's brother. Clearly the family was Lutheran, so Hans Peter, IF he became a Quaker, would not have been listed as a MENNONITE converting. He would have converted from Lutheran to Quaker. Later Lutheran records would indicate that others of the family did not convert.
Others have reported the information found in this document, but have not provided a full transcript or translation.
1965 Michel, Paul "TÄUFER, MENNONITEN UND QUÄKER IN KRIEGSHEIM BEI WORMS, Das Täutertum bis zum 30 jährigen Krieg," an article published in "Der Wormsgau" Vol 7, 1965/1966, discusses this document on page 47:
"Trotz aller Nachstellungen und Bedrückungen blieben die Quäker bei ihrer Weigerung, Stuern und Abgaben zu entrichten, so daß der AMTSSCHAFFNER Schmal aus Hochheim 1684 die Regierung bat, die Ausweisung der "närrischen Sekte" zu veranlassen, weil sie weder gewillt seien, Schutzgeld, den Zehnten und die Türkensteuer zu bezahlen, noch Hut und Wachten, wie andere Gemeinsleute, anzuüben. Außerdem scheuten sie sich nicht zu behaupten, Vieh, Wein und Frucht sie ihneng estchlen worden wenn dies wegen der verweigerten Steuern gepfändet worden sei. Sie seien "eine Art Brüder, die männiglich ärgert und niemand als sich selbst achtet." Der Wert des Eigentums der Quäker wurde wie folgt eingeschätzt (51):
Translation by Lou and Cris Hueneke:
In spite of all the persecution and oppression, the Quakers remained firm in their refusal to pay taxes and deductions, and so the official (Amtsschaffner) at the Hochheim electorate office, named Schmal, in 1684, asked the government to initiate the expulsion of the "foolish sect," since they were unwilling to pay the protection tax, the tenth (church tithe), or the Turkish war tax, nor to stand as night watchmen, as did other people in the community. Furthermore, they did not shy away from asserting that livestock, wine, and vegetables were stolen from them when these things were confiscated to pay these due taxes. They are a kind of brotherhood that annoys people and they only respect themselves."
Comments: The word Sekt in GERMAN has a different and more negative connotation than does our word sect in English, which refers to a branch of another organization, and often is used to define a branch of Christianity. In German, Sekt means cult. The discussions of this item that I've seen have all translated "Sekt" as "sect" and so clarification may be in order. The early Quakers were presumably not considered by the local citizens and officials to be a legitimate branch of Christianity. Michel's full article speaks to this and the reasons for it. I am working on applicable translated excerpts, which should appear later in Hans Peter Bibliography under Michel.
Hull, William I, WILLIAM PENN AND THE DUTCH QUAKER MIGRATION TO PENNSYLVANIA, Swarthmore College, 1935, states on page 289:
"But after the alien Quaker preachers had departed, the Friends of Krisheim had still to meet the church-tithes and the Turkish-war taxes which were demanded of them, both of which they steadfastly refused to pay as being contrary to their religious principles. Their refusal also to stand sentinel at the town's walls was the last straw which broke the patience of the electoral steward at Hochheim, Herr Schmal by name, who was spurred on by it to petition the government to order the banishment of 'the foolish sect.' The influence of the Princess Elisabeth at the electoral court was evidently still too strong in behalf of the Quakers, and the edict of banishment was not issued. But Steward Schmal was rejoiced to report on the 9th of May, 1685, that three Quaker households (Hausgesässe), to the great joy of the community, desired to sell their belongings (das Ihrige) and betake themselves to Holland or England. Schmal enclosed with this report the following request of the Quakers:" (Hull then shows his translation of the first, May 8, 1685, passport request made by Schumacher, Hendrichs, Umstatt, altho he names Cassel instead of Umstatt).
So far I have not seen the original document written on this date that is said to have been enclosed with the passport requests. Hull's sources are Hubben and Smith. Hubben's statement is shown below and is obviously Hull's source. Although Hubben errored in naming Cassel instead of Umstatt, we can still assume there to be a reasonable degree of credibility in his overall work and that he most likely did review original documents. This particular statement is not of major importance as regards Hans Peter in any case, it is only part of the background information on the political and religious climate in Kriegsheim in 1685. The fact that no Umstatts are named as Quakers in the "Hochgebohrner" document, and the fact that Umstadts have been found in earlier and later Evangelische (Lutheran) records in Monsheim, which is right next to Kriegsheim, would lead one to believe that Hans Peter was perhaps not himself subject to the persecution experienced by the Quakers.
There are probably more documents from Kriegsheim than those I've seen, as I requested only the ones cited in Michel that related directly to what he said about Hans Peter. I have been unable to find a copy of Hubben's book, which I hope will show the exact documents he used by number. Hubben's sources are not shown on the several page copies I have.
Hubben, Wilhelm, DIE QUÄKER IN DER DEUTSCHEN VERGANGENHEIT (The Quakers in the German Past), 1929, Quäker-Verlag, Leizig. Written in German. Page 71
"Die weitere hartnäckige Weigerung der Quäker, den Kirchenzehnten und die Türkensteuer zu zahlen un auch die ortsüblichen Wachen zu stellen, veranlaßte 1684 den Amtsschaffner Schmal in Hochheim zu Eingaben an die Regierung, die Ausweisung der "närrischen Sekte" zu verfügen. Der amtlich ausgeübte Druck wurde stärker und stärker, und am 9. Mai 1685 meldete Schmall: "Welcher Gestalt drei Haußgesäß Quäker zu der ganzen Gemeinde großen Freude das Ihrige verkaufen und nach Holland oder England sich begeben wollen, zeiget der Beischluß. Ob ich ich sie nun nach Erlegung des Zehnpfennigs ziehen lassen und ihnen willfahren solle, frage ich an." Das beigefügte Gesuch der Quäker lautete:"
Translation by Lou and Cris Hueneke:
The further stubborn refusal of the Quakers to pay the church tithes and the Turkish war tax and also to stand watch over the town induced (in) 1684 official (Amtschaffner) Schmal in Hochheim to submit to the government a report of the expulsion of the"crazy sect/cult." Official pressure became greater and greater, and on May 9, 1685, Schmal advised, "It appears that three Quaker households, to the great joy of the entire community, are selling their belongings and want to betake themselves to Holland or England, as shown in the attached. My question is, should I let them go and bid them farewell if they pay the ten pennies?" The attached request of the Quakers reads:" (Hubben then quotes the first, May 8, 1685, passport request made by Schumacher, Hendrichs, Umstatt, altho he erroneously names Hans Peter Cassel instead of Umstatt).
When people wanted to leave their homeland, they didn't need to travel to the "capital." They could go to a local "Amt" (office) in their county. The original of the first passport request is very difficult to read, but the spelling seems to be Hocheim (with only one h). Hochheim and Horchheim are both towns very close to Kriegsheim, and, assuming that they both existed in 1685, either could have been the logical place for Hans Peter and the others to begin their quest. Since both passport requests clearly show Kriegsheim, I've not pursued which town it actually was in as of yet. My modern Germany atlas does not show counties, but I do know that Kriegsheim today is in Alzey County, and it appears that both nearby Hochheim and Horchheim are as well.
There are various other Hochheims and Horchheims in Germany, but the Hochheim in what is now Alzey County, Rhineland-Pfalz, just northwest of Worms and just east of Kriegsheim, is certainly the most likely. Horchheim is named only by Haller. Michel and Hubben both say Hochheim, and since Michel, and probably Hubben as well, reviewed the original documents, as did my archivist Armin, I vote for this Hochheim.
Another Hochheim is found in what is now Hessen, across the Rhine from Mainz, near Florsheim. It is unlikely to be the right one, since it is not in Rhineland-Pfalz and is quite far from Kriegsheim. Smith mentions the "Hochgebohrner"according to a footnote in Hull, and both show it as being dated Kriegsheim, FLORSHEIM District. Florsheim District is NOT on the original. I suspect that Smith must have consulted an atlas and assumed that this was the Hochheim in question, however little sense it makes. Apparently Smith (and Hull by quoting him) believed S W Pennypacker that Hans Peter was from Krefeld and therefore picked the wrong Hochheim, although since Hendrichs and Schumacher were known by Smith to have been from Kriegsheim, this doesn't make much sense either. I have not found an earlier reference than Smith to Florsheim. Pennypacker was apparently unaware of the existence of the Kriegsheim documents and therefore of Hans Peter's residency there in 1685.
There is also a town of Flörsheim just above Kriegsheim and an Ober-Flörsheim just below Flomborn, so if there was in fact a Florsheim District involved at all, it would still have been in the Kriegsheim area. See Kriegsheim Area Map.
A Horchheim is in what is now Rhineland-Pfalz, just west of Worms, just east of Kriegsheim/Hohen-Sülzen, presumably in Alzey County. This is the second most likely possibility, and is shown in Haller, Charles R, ACROSS THE ATLANTIC AND BEYOND, page 15: "The records show that on May 8, 1685, Gerhardt Hendricks, Hans Peter Umstadt, and Peter Schumacher filed, at Horcheim, Germany, a petition for a passport. The request was repeated on June 11, 1685. The petition was granted shortly thereafter. On August 15, 1685, while still in KREFELD, Germany, Hendricks and Schumacher bought 200 acres each from Dirck Sipman (Phila Deed Book E4, Vol 7, page 180). (Charles Haller later informed me via email, "My remarks about Horcheim should read Horchheim." He was apparently referring to his misspelling of Horchheim, not changing it to Hochheim.)
There are two other Hochheims in Thüringen, in the former East Germany. It should be safe to rule them out as simply being too far from Kriegsheim and in the wrong direction.
Another Horchheim is in Rhineland-Pfalz, near Koblenz/Lahnstein. This Horchheim is on the Rhine River, between Kriegsheim and Rotterdam, and would have been en route downriver. This might have made sense had Umstatt et al not petitioned the Ausfautt of Alzey in the second request, which would have meant going back upriver to Alzey, and this Horchheim is not in or near what is now Alzey County.
© Cris Hueneke 2001
last updated December 8, 2001