One Branch of the
Walrod Family Tree
Dating Back to the Year 1710 by Walter Bruce Walrod.
Although the family name has been spelled WALROD by our branch since about the year 1800, there have been many variations of that spelling in the 232 years since Gerhard and Henrich Wallerath one of whom is now thought, after many years of thorough genealogical research to be our common ancestor, landed on our American shore in 1710.
Wallerath, Wallrath, Walrath, Wallratt, Walradt, Walrodt, Walraad and Walrod are some of these variations over the years. We never will know the reasons for all of these changes but it was a German name, pronounoed, "Vol-rodt" by German speaking people and a. gradual change to a more English pronunciation took place over the years. The census, too, taken periodically by English speaking people may have been partly responsible, giving the German name a more English spelling. It was during the lives of the sons and daughters of Nicholas Walrath born in 1750 that the change to Wal rod took place in our branch of the family. Johannes Walrath, born in 1783, and baptized, as such, for instance, was John Walrod in later life.
In the Revolutionary War, 1775-1787, the following men served under Col. Jacob Klock in the Tryon County (N. Y.) militia: under the name Wallerath there were Adam, Hannes, Isaac, Jacob H. and Nicholas: under the name Walrath there were Heinrich, Isaac, Nicholas (from whom all but a very few of those shown in this record evidently are descended) Adolph, Henry, Friterich and Henrich. Under, the name Wallrath there are Jacob: and under the name Walrad there were Adolph, Gerhart, Jacob, John and Peter.
In the first U.S. Government census, taken in 1790 the following Walradts are listed as living in the-States of New York: in the town of Canjohar1e there were Adolph Jr., Frederick, Frederick A., Garrett, George, Henry W., Jacob, Jacob A., John H., John S., John Peter., Peter, and William: in Palatine town there were Isaac, Jacob H., Nicholas, and Peter H., and under the spelling Walrodt the following are, listed as living in Palatine: John, Adam, Adolph and John.
We have proof also, from the National Archives, Washington, D.C. that there were Walradts in the War of 1812-14. Johannes, Abraham and Nicholas Walrath our direct ancestors as shown in this record, also all served in the War of 1812
Queen Anne was the English Sovereign in 1710 and America, since it was before the Revolutionary War, was under British rule. During the latter part of the year 1709 about 3,000 emigrants from the German Rhine Palatinate, Zweibruecken, Hesse Cassel and Waldeck landed in Holland on their way through England to the English Colonies in America. Because the Queen had given orders prohibiting the entrance of more immigrants at that time, this party of 3,000 was detained in Holland for five weeks and this may be the explanation of the fact that certain present day Walrods, in Iowa and in Nebraska and in other parts of America, some closely and others more closely related to us, claim Dutch rather than German descent.
We have records showing that Gerhard and Henrich Wallerath, with their wives and five children, were in this party of 3,000, as was Ulriel Simmendinger, from Reutlingen in the Province of Wurtemburg, with his wife and two children. They left Germany in 1709 and, after their delay in Holland, sailed from London for America in a fleet of ten ships, in January, 1710. Robert Hunter, the newly appointed governor of the province of New York, also was in the party. A trip across the Atlantic in 1710 was quite different from a present day crossing and, in the six months required, 480 passengers died and one vessel was wrecked on the American coast.
The survivors eventually reached New York but, owing to their sickly condition, they were quarantined for five months on Nutten (now Governor's) Island. Here 250 more succumbed to ship's fever and 84 orphaned children were apprenticed to respectable citizens.
In the fall of 1710 Gov. Hunter settled the remaining colonists on a tract of 6,000 acres on the east bank of the Hudson River. Later, they spread to both sides of the river and then westward to other counties along the Mohawk River. A number of our ancestors, as the years passed, settled in Palatine Town, in Canajoharie and in Cherry Valley. Some went to the Schoharie Valley and some to New York (city). Among those who returned to New York was Simmendinger. He found employment on Long Island and remained there until August 14, 1717 when, with his wife (his two children had died by this time), he returned to his native city in Germany by way of Amsterdam, and subsequently published his Simmendinger Register of approximately 500 Palatine families.
"This", as shown on the fly leaf, “is a true and authentic register of persons still living, by God's grace who, in the year 1709, under the Wonderful Providence of the Lord journeyed from Germany to America or New World and there seek their piece of bread at various places.” This register was prepared by Simmendinger after his return to Germany. It throws light on the limited information we possess relative to the early struggles of the hardy Palatines who first settled along the Hudson and later, the Mohawk Valley.
Little is known of this register until it showed up in the New York Public Library in 1926. It consists of 24 pages, printed in German, now translated to English, and is now a matter of public record and photostatic copies can be had by addressing the New York Library. He states plainly in the introduction that the names given are all who were established here in America at the time of his departure in 1717. Heinrich and Gerhardt were included in this list and it is from this point that the within Walerath-Walrod history gets its American start.