Thursday, July 2, 2009

History of the Hinkle Family


Henry Hinckle, a native of Lancaster Co. removed to Maytown 1768 and remained there till 1778. He was drafted into the Revolutionary War but ran away with several other drafted men and took refuge on Mundorff's Island, below Safe Harbor, where he was captured by a detachment of soldiers and brought to Lancaster. He was detailed to drive a team in the supply train of the continental Army, and participated in the battles of Trenton and Brandywine. He remained in the army until honorably discharged.

The record shows he had a son Honnes b. 1775 who left a family of 10 children, who left numerous descendants. He died before the war was over. Family Exaltation by Archibald F. Bennett. p. 143.

For years descendants of the Foutz family have been trying to trace the ancestors of Elizabeth Hinkle, wife of John Foutz. Nothing was known of them beyond the fact that she was the daughter of Henry Hinkle and Matalena, and was born 10 July 1778, in Franklin Co., Pennsylvania. That was the genealogical frontier. A search on behalf of Devere Walker and Don Rogers, students at the BYU, revealed deeds and a court record of Franklin Co., proving that Henry Hinkle and his wife Matalena were the parents of Elizabeth.

Henry, the father, was born in Lancaster Co., Pennsylvania before 1745. Henry is named as a son in the will of his father George Hinkel, which was made in Frederick Co., Virginia. His full name is George Rudolphus Hinkle. (When I found his family group sheet at the archives it was spelled Henkel.) The printed Henckel Family Records could now be used. These showed that George Rudolphus was born in Germany, a son of the Rev. Anthony Jacob Henkel, a Lutheran Minister, who came to Pennsylvania in 1717, from Germany with his wife Maria Elizabeth.

St. Michaels ChurchSt. Michaels Lutheran Church in Philadelphia PA where Elizabeth Hinkle's grandfather Anthony Jacob Hinkle was pastor. See St. Michaels Church website.

The Henckle or Hinkle Family have formed a strong Henckle Family Association and have been going for a number of years. They have published the Henckle Family records, which trace the pedigree of Charles Hinckle, born abt 1741; died before 1790, Rowan Co., North Carolina (who md Elizabeth Johnson, daughter of Casper and Catherine Johnson), back through his father, Anthony Jacob Henkel, Jr., to his grandfather, Rev. Anthony Jacob Henkel, a Lutheran minister who came to Pennsylvania, with his wife Maria Elizabeth prior to 1718, bringing a family of children. He died in 1728; and his widow in 1744; at that time she was aged 73 years. The Rev. Henkel had kept a diary, which would probably give his exact place of birth in Germany, but it seems to have long disappeared.

In Nov. 1924, Mr Burt Brown Barker, President of the Henckle Family Organization made a ten day investigation in Germany with no result. Since Rev. Henkel was a Lutheran minister, he inquired and found the strongest Lutheran college in the district at that early day was at Giessen. He went to the library of the University there and examined a list of students from 1675 to 1692. There he was able to find the signature of Antonius Jacobus Henckel, Mehrenberg, made the day he entered the university, in 1688. "For the first time" he wrote, "I saw the signature of my ancestor. I made a tracing of the signature." (Henckle Family records p. 13)

Since he registered from Mehrenberg, they went by train to Weilberg, the nearest station, and walked about 1 1/4 hours to Mehrenberg in the mountains. The pastor said he had never heard the name of Henckel, but the early records were kept in the near by village of Allendorf. There, the pastor invited them into his study and they began going through the records. The first one was for the year 1644, the earlier ones having been destroyed in the thirty years war. We shall let Mr. Barker tell his own story.

"We had Pastor Schmidt get out these records and turn to the entry of baptisms. We realized this was a critical time and filled with great hope. I figured that if he matriculated at about 20 years he must have been born about 1668, but to be certain I asked them to begin the search in the year 1660. The record was placed on a high stand so that all cold see the record. Pastor Schmidt stood immediately in front of the book, with Herr Fischer, my interpreter, at his side. While I stood behind both peering over their shoulders. All the records were in German script, many of the forms being obsolete and antiquated. Pastor Schmidt however was very well versed with such, and thus read it fairly easily. I asked him to read off each name aloud, as i was anxious that no record should be overlooked. Thus we all examined each name down the page, as Pastor Schmidt called it out.

They went through the years, 1660, 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 without results, then 1666. I began to grow nervous, then came 1667-then strange as it may seem, I sat down and did not further examine the records. They had hardly begun on 1667, when in excitement the pastor exclaimed "Henckel"! I was on my feet in an instant but almost before I knew what was happening the pastor's eyes scanned the record and he exclaimed in great disappointment "Ach eine Tochter!" ("Oh, a little daughter!") He was greatly chagrinned as he was as excited of the search as we were.

I told them to turn to 1668. We went through Jan., Feb., Mar., and on to Sep. without an entry. As day by day slipped by I realized that only 2 months were left of the year. But while I was turning over these unhappy thoughts in my mind, Pastor Schmidt called out, "Hen cjke"; and before I could collect my thoughts he fairly screamed "ein sohn" ("a son"), and almost in the same breath and in wild excitement read off "Anthonius Jacobus".

I was speechless, but all I could do was look at the record where the pastor had his finger. For he was speaking to me in a most excited manner in the German language but not one word of which I understood. My interpreter chiming in, they engaged in a most exciting dialogue in German-all unintelligible to me. As I stood there trying to realize what had happened, the wife of Pastor Schmidt came in. She joined her husband and the interpreter, both of whom were so beside themselves that they had entirely forgotten that I did not understand German. Meanwhile Pastor Schmidt, after explaining something to my interpreter, had darted from the room. The pastors son, a boy of about 16 years of age, entered the room. After speaking to his mother, her son went to the record and read it. After doing so, he returned to me and in very fair English explained that the record gave the names of the parents of my ancestor, told that his father was a teacher in Mehrenberg, and that Pastor Schmidt had a history of Mehrenberg which he had gone to get with the hope that it would tell something more of the father of my ancestor.

The history had a note about the father, printed in 1819 which read: Mr George Henckel from Steinmark in the District of Darmstadt, an honest and brave schoolmaster. His monument is still standing in marole in the church yard of Mehrenberg. It was erected for him by his wife, Eulalia Dentzer from Steinmark, in 1666. He had five sons and one daughter. One of the sons studied theology; and became a pastor in the palatinate; another son went into the war; and another one became a baker in the town of his father. His age was 43.

They located the baptismal record of all the children, 5 sons and one daughter. Anthony Jacob being the oldest son. A witness to the first baptism was Mr. Othmar Dentzer, father-in-law to the schoolmaster. Their second entry read 27 Oct 1668. George Henckel schoolmaster and Eulalia his wife, presented for baptism a little son called Anthonius Jacobus; Godfathers and Godmothers; George Anthonius Reinhardi, pastor, Jacob Henckel his brother, and Ann Maria, daughter of Mr. Othmar Dentzer of Steinberg.

At the christening of the third child the mother's name was given as Anna Eulalia. The 1st baptism in 1678 showed the father was dead by that date, 17 Jul 1678. Anna Eulalia, widow of Mr. George Henckel of Mehrenberg, presented for baptism a little son called Philipp Conrad.

Back at Geissen University, under date of 25 Jul 1650 was found an entry that on George Henckel had matriculated in the fourth class (students between 13 and15), from Allendorf ad Lumbda, a place near Giessen. On visiting the place they learned that the earlier records had been destroyed by a fire in the church, the earliest beginning in 1744, over 100 years too late. Steinmark could not be located on the map, but professor told them this was the old name for the village of Steinberg, a suburb of Giessen. The records of Steinberg were kept at the adjoining village of Wetzenborn. The pastor produced what he called the earliest record, beginning about 1750, and said there were no earlier ones. The case looked hopeless. But when a young schoolmaster of the village was sent for he insisted that there were two earlier volumes going back to 1624. These had been saved by the priests during the thirty years war, who hid them in their gowns from the soldiers. A thorough search was made but no records could be found. Yet the schoolmaster insisted that he himself had searched these missing books. The former custodian of the records was an old man and could remember nothing. Had he ever given any person access to them? Finally by the aid of his wife he recollected having let another schoolmaster examine them. When they visited the latter and demanded the records he produced them. There under date 2 May, 1666, was the marriage of "Mr. George Henckel, preceptor of Mehrenberg, near Weilberg, to Anna Eulalia, daughter of Othmar Dentzer".

By similar procedure it was found that Othmar Dentzer was born in 1595; was buried at Steinberg 25 August, 1626, age 81; and married there, 6 Nov., 1626, Loysa Wagner, daughter of Rev. Ludwig Wagner (d. 1633, son of Emmerich Wagner). Finally the marriage of Rev. Anthony Jacob Henckle 25 April, 1692, showed his wife's maiden name was also Dentzer. She was christened 26 May, 1672, at Birkenwaw, Odenwald; daughter of Nicolaus Dentzer (son of Simon Dentzer, who was a brother of Othmar Dentzer above). Thus the emigrant minister and his wife were 2nd cousins.

Thus, by use of information from relatives, autobiographies of ancestors, wills, deeds, court records, university records, church records and printed biographies all this information pushing back the forefather frontier was found right in our Genealogical Library. Thousands of descendants of the Foutz and Hess families and Hinkle families throughout the country can share in the fruits of these discoveries.


Whereas, I Henry Hinckle of Maytown, aforesaid being sick and weak to body but sound and clear in judgement and memry, thanks be to God for his mercy and calling to mind the fraility of mankind and that all flesh is but as grass before the Lord and after bequeathing my soul to the Lord who gave it and my body to the dust, I do in the following manner will and bequeath all and the whole of my estate in rale and personal as follows; viz. first, for the love that I bear to my wife Matalin, I do will and bequeath that she do hold and possess all and evry of my rale and personal estate for the use of her own children begotten of my body until the youngest surviving child arrives at and to the age of 20 years and at the end and expiration of that time the whole of the rale and personal effects to be sold and all of my children then surviving law-begotten of my body to have an equal share or dividend with allowing my wife the usual custom of the country during her natural life, and the better that equaty and good justice may be done in this my last will and testamint. I do constitute and appoint Jacob Shereman and Walter Bell both of Donegal Tp. to be my executors and I do hereby revoke and disanull all other writings as to be recorded as such according to law.

Signed sealed and acknowledged before us the date 12 Sept., 1781.
Daniel Orth, Ulrich Danner.Inventory Book D p. 94.


Will of George Hinkle filed at Winchester, Fred. Co., Virginia. This I do certify and give from under my hand as my last will and testament and my dying words. I leave to my wife, Mary, my bed and bed clothes, cows, sheep, hogs, and household goods and the half lot that I live on to my wife, Mary, as long as she lives and the stuff that is in the house to my wife, Mary, a horse and a mare, and I leave to my wife, Mary, a third part of the land that is in Maryland that my son Jacob has in hands; and further after my wife Mary's death the half lot comes to my son Henry and he is to pay as much to his brothers and sisters as I paid for the half lot and is to be equally divided among his brothers and sisters, and further I leave my wife, Mary, for exec.

As witness my hand and seal this 1st day of Feb. Anno Domina, one thousand seven hundred and eighty-six. (1786)

JOHANNES KELLER witnesses probated 2 Sept., 1788

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