Sauerland to Banat

Alot of people want to know why so many went to the Banat from Germany.  I have done massive amounts of research including studying history, but more importantly, I wanted to get right down to finding out why my family left Deutmecke to go to Hatzfeld.  After interviewing and communicating with Deutmecke farmers and relatives and Hatzfeld family members who are still alive and know the family lore, I found it was the same reason the thousands of other Germans went.  Not only was the opportunity exciting, the offer to homested, get free land and re-populate the Banat after the Austrian-Ottoman wars had de-populated it, but conditions for farmers and villagers in the Sauerland region of Germany were very poor during the 1700's.  For one thing people who lived along the Rhine were "war weary" after decades of war, destruction and taxation (The thirty year war actually lasted longer than thirty years).  The other thing was the tax system was stacked against the farmers.  Taxes were much higher on the farmers than on the rich or even the people who lived in the city, so farmers barely got by and were always in debt.  The church was in league with the government and the local preists kept a book on each farm.  This was called the "Hofbuch" and it kept all the financial records and recorded births, deaths, baptisms, etc.  I have a copy on computer disk of the "Hofbuch" from the Kraushaar farm in Deutmecke from the 1700's, although it is written in a pigion Latin and German combination.  It really wasn't until almost the  1820's that the farmers really became free and owned their own land.
*Note: I have attatched a document at the bottom of this page with specific information to the debt of the Kraushaar farm, which could have been the final push for Johann and Anna Kraushaar to go to the Banat.
So the promise of homesteding with free land they could call their own in the Banat was very inviting.  Now here is a portion of a book on the subject of Deutmecke farmers leaving to the Banat:
An excerpt from Fremde in Westfalen. Westfalen in der Fremde.  Zur Geschichte der Ein - und Auswanderung von 1200 bis 1950. (The History of Immigration In and Out of Westphalia 1200-1959) By Gilbert Strotdrees:
Five cows, 15 sheep, 1 pig and 1 goat Anton Poggel calls his own. He lives in Kückelheim in 1760 as a small farmer. With those few animals he does not belong to the poorest people in the village, but life is still hard.. Then he and the other poor farmers heard rumors about Queen Maria Theresia in Austria, that she would await them with open arms in her country.
So many families make the long trip to the Banat. They have been promised land for free, help for building their houses and so on.
The Pastor of Eslohe noted on 30 April 1765 that Anton Poggel married Maria Margarete Bloyink. Only three days later he noted that they have gone to Hungary. The sister of Poggel goes with them. Between 1764 and 1772 1800 people from the Sauerland region left for the Banat.
(Now the author explains what the Banat looked like)
Jacob Struck from Mecklinghausen was a soldier in the army of the Austrians, He settled already shortly  after1718 , when Prinz Eugen fought the Turks (Ottoman Empire) in Vienna. The Austrian government said: Only when there are people, the taxes will come from this land , which was nearly abandoned  after the war between the Turks and the Austrians. Spanish, Serbian farmers,  Hungarians and people from Romania are also coming to the region to farm and homestead.Starting in the 1720 s most of the Germans left from southwest Germany. ( So they were called Banater Schwaben. From 1722 to 1726 twenty families from Drolshagen and Wenden are the first from the Sauerland region to go.From 1752 to 1753 around 100 families follow them.The peak was reached in 1764 to1772. By that time 382 families From the Sauerland went to Hungary. It might have been even 450.  Most of them came from the villages around Olpe and Drolshagen and the region Attendorn, Eslohe, and  Schmallenberg.Very well paid agents from Austria came through the villages to try to bait and entice people to the Banat in Hungary.But also the colonists themselves are advertising for Hungary. Some came back to the Sauerland to sell their land and so on.  When they went back to the Banat, they would take relatives, friends and neighbors with them. The local government in the Sauerland calls them seducers, as they do not want people to leave the Sauerland.. In 1766 in the churches the priests read the order from the government, that 25 percent of the capital and equity of those who leave will be confiscated. by the government. The agents of Queen Maria Theresia of Austria are even supposed to be killed.when they come to entice people to the Banat.  The government fears, that there are not enough workers left on the farms anymore. But as there is no work, no money, no future, the people do not care. The Kaiserin wakes too many hopes for these poor people of the farmer under class but can not deliver on the promises.
(Now the author gives the example of a poor farmer)
Heinrich Tilmann (called Zenger) left with his family from the village Kückelheim (10 kilometer from Deutmecke.) He was the owner  of 1 goat,  10 sheep and 3 cows. The 20-year-old Anton Wagner, who was the son of a tailor, went with him.
( Now he speaks about the reasons and why people left the Sauerland.)
Those, who did not have any property left, because they wanted to become free. The owners of farms left, because they were indebted. That was not the fault of the farmers, but the Kurkölnische government. The aristocracy does not have to pay any taxes and the citizens in the cities only pay 19 percent tax.  81 percent of all the tax income is from the farmers. So they don’t have any reserves.  Many farms were ruined or deep in debt and that was the main reason for leaving.
(Now the example of Poggel, how they managed to get to Banat.)
On 2 May they leave the village. With 12 families they are making a trek. They are going in the direction of Fulda and from there to Bamberg  then via Nürnberg to Regensburg. A ship then brings them via the Donau (Danube) to Vienna.  This first part of the journey takes them 1 month.
On 29 May they have to register in Vienna. Every family gets 6 gulden. After a short rest, they take the ship again and reach at the end of June Tschanad..
*Note -  If you want further reading about Deutmecke area farming, families and the tax system in the Sauerland from that period, go back to the Genealogy page and click on "Korte and Kraushaar - Printed Version"

Information on Kraushaar farm debt and court settlement that reduced the farm in size:


This is an excerpt from pages 73-77:

Pfarrarchiv S c h ö n h o l t h a u s e n


Angelegt von

Dr. jur. Alfred Cohausz


(The Schoenholthausen Parish Archives)


This legal and church involved proceeding could have something to do with some Deutmecke Kraushaar’s leaving Germany and moving to the Banat in Hungary to homestead, as this document appears there was some turmoil surrounding the Kraushaar farm and the sub-dividing of it in 1786 (the year Johann immigrated to the Banat to homested), perhaps due to this debt.  Although research indicates that some Kraushaar’s remained in Deutmecke on the farm which was retained by Anna Maria Kraushaar-Steckbrock (another daughter of Anton Kraushaar), however it was reduced in size.


1786 August 23. Johannes Kraushaar in Deutmecke compared documents with minister Bertram in Schoenholthausen Volume 2 - 75 - over the Rinckeguetchen, from which the Pastor demands a delivery and had a complaint. Kraushaar gives up for the paying off of all requirements: a) Barn together with yard to the stream and the Henrichs garden. b) the Leinkamp, c) ¼ in the Mark, d) ¼ of the Junckholz with the gluing to loads. He signs then leaves the free court  broke and confirms. Judicial execution with signature and seal of the kurfuerstlichen judge Hoeynck. Attached: The Minister Toellmann leases everything with different plots ( see the following document of same day) that Mathias Poeggeler, may re-do the barn at his own expense and changes to the house and 10 ½ Tollar. The lease must pay and the profit money  of 1 Tollar (Dollar). The Minister of Desks notes that only 4.7 Tollar of the lease of the Pastor and 4 Tollar to the church were paid. 1786 August 23.  Johannes Kraushaar of Deutmecke professes himself of documents to the old debt of 100 Tollar, each with that volume 2  the Pastor and church and signs it on August 23 in 1786. Johannes Kraushaar of Deutmecke admits 100 tollar of the documents parish church and Pastorat. to volume owe 2, for which 3 Scheffel on the Fohenfuhr, in the same way on the Dufenschlade, 3 ½ Scheffels, in the Vossmecke with the meadow beside it, a truck hay stature largely, 6 Scheffels behind the Reitzebeil, 6 Scheffels am(?) Hageberg under the seed mountain, in the same way in the Brauteri-76 - schem mountain, 12 Scheffels. Oats country on the carrot stone together with Heidland and all loads retired. He then signs and lets the contract judicially confirm. Managing the original..


* Note: This debt may have stemmed from the extraordinary dowry of his Aunt Maria Catharina Kraushaar (sister of Maria Elizibeth and daughter of Anton Kraushaar) when she married Wilhelm Vigener in Attendorn November 13, 1753.   I am told this by the current owners of the Kraushaar farm, themselves Kraushaar descendants, who also told me the farm was then in debt for decades after the dowry and the court case went on for years and years until it was finally settled by Johann Kraushaar in 1786.

Now if you want to continue this journey to the Banat, go back to the Kraushaar Genealogy website and you can find out what life was like once the settlers arrived in the Banat at the Hatzfeld-Banat page link.  This page is part of the Kraushaar-Korte Genealogy website.  For a massive amount of Sauerland-Banat history:

Jump back to the Kraushaar Genealogy page!

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