First Families – The Pioneers

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Names from 1724 Census*

*J. Hanno Deiler, Settlement of the German Coast of Louisiana and the Creoles of German Descent

Simon Lambert
Conrad Friedrich
Johann Georg Troxler
Johann Georg Bock
Wilhelm Ziriac
Johann Callander
Stephan Kistenmacher
Jeremias Wagner
Leonhard Magdolff
Andreas Schantz
Johann Georg Betz
Johann Adam Matern
Caspar Dubs
Ambrose Heidel
Jacob Ritter
Michael Vogel
Sebastian Funck
Michael Horn
Balthasar Monthe
Johann Georg Raeser
Johann Jacob Bebloquet
Johann Cretzmann
Balthasar Marx
Bernard Wich
Johann Rommel
Catharine Weller
Anna Kuhn
Magdalena Fromberger
Margarethe Reynard
Catherine Hencke
Christian Grabert
Andreas Necker
Jacob Oberle
Andreas Schenck
Marcus Thiel
Moritz Kobler
Karl Friedrich D’Arensbourg
Andreas Traeger
Jacob Lueck
Andreas Hofmann
Mathias Friedrich
Bernhard Reusch
Paul Klomp
Adam Schmitz
Johann Rodler
Anton Distelzweig
William Pictot
Friedrich Merkel
Peter Muench
Andreas Struempfl
Johann Adam Riehl
Jacques Poche
Joseph Wagensbach
Sibylla Heil
Johann Adam Edelmeier
Philipp Zahn
Johann Jacob Foltz
Bernhard Anton

Changes in German Names

These early German settlers readily married into French families already living on the German Coast and adopted the French language and customs. They even accepted Gallicized revisions of their names. The French officials were well educated, served as scribes, and recorded the names of the Germans phonetically. The most common example is the German name Zweig, which sounded like twig. This became LaBranche in French. The spoken German language died slowly on the coast, but the written German faded quickly, as many of these first Germans had no formal education.

German Original

  • Dubs
  • Engel
  • Foltz
  • Heidel
  • Helfer
  • Himmel
  • Huber
  • Kamper
  • Lesch
  • Manz
  • Matern
  • Mayer
  • Rommel
  • Schaf
  • Scheckschneider
  • Traeger
  • Trischl
  • Troxler
  • Wagensbach
  • Weber
  • Wichner
  • Zehringer

French Translation

  • Toups
  • Hingle
  • Folse
  • Haydel
  • Elfer
  • Hymel
  • Oubre
  • Cambre
  • Laiche
  • Montz
  • Mathern
  • Mayeux
  • Rome
  • Chauffe
  • Schexnayder
  • Tregre
  • Triche
  • Trosclair
  • Waguespack
  • Webre
  • Vicknair
  • Zeringue
Early Death Certificate Registre d’état-civil Louisiana
Early Death Certificate Registre d’état-civil Louisiana, f° 4: extrait des registres du R. P. Philibert Viauden

In addition to those first families of St. Charles Parish, those pioneers listed in the 1724 census, other German families not listed in the 1724 census were in the area and eventually came to the German Coast including:

  •  Jacob Huber (Oubre)
  • Thomas Lesch (Laiche)
  • Mueller
  • Johann Weber
  • Pierre Brou
  • Michael Zehringer (Zeringue)
  • Schaf (Chauffe)
  • Hans Reinhard Scheckschneider
  • Jean Zweig
  • Adam Trischl (Triche) and
  • Johann Manz (Montz).

Many of the descendents of these pioneer families remain today on the German Coast.

This text is copyright © material by Marilyn Richoux, Joan Becnel and Suzanne Friloux, from St. Charles Parish, Louisiana: A Pictorial History, 2010.

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