Records from Reichensachsen
In studying the genealogy of my German ancestors, many seemed to come from one town (Reichensachsen, Werra-Meissner-Kreis, Deutschland), immigrated first to Lee County, Illinois, then to the area of Dysart, Iowa (on the border between Benton and Tama Counties). It is evident that the first émigrés from the village were in contact with kin who stayed behind. When they found how comparatively easy it was to obtain land, they urged their kin to come. By 1860-1870, Lee County contained many of the same surnames found in Reichensachsen: Albrecht, Aschenbrenner, Beck, Böttner, Degenhardt, Dilcher, Dölle, Fey, Gleim, Heckman, Hübenthal, Klebe, Krug, Külmar, Ludolph, Morgenthal, Otto, Reiss, Sandrock, Schade, Schellhase, Schlarbaum, Stück, Vaupel, Wächter, Wagner, and others.
Because they often traveled a similar path, many of the former Reichensachsen residents intermarried in Lee Co. or Benton/Tama Co. Conversely, many of the ancestor lines of Lee Co. or Benton/Tama Co. residents lead back to Reichensachsen. One would have to document every person born in Reichensachsen to determine the kinship to Lee Co. and Benton/Tama Co. Unfortunately, I do not have access to all the records of Reichensachsen. But I have some records, and they are summarized here in the linked .doc.
Also, I have begun collecting any mention of Reichensachsen or nearby towns in immigration ship passenger manifests. These are listed in the second .doc.
1) Births, Marriages, Deaths from Reichensachsen Church Records
2) Passengers to America from the Reichensachsen Area
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