Derwacter is one of my lines, though not one I've researched extensively.I'm a gggg-granddaughter of Eva Derwacter Wion b. 1780 PA, wife of Frederick Peter Wion b. 1781 York, PA.As far as we can tell, the OH Derwacters hail from Freckenfeld, a little commune in the Pfalz (Rhineland-Palatinate) region of GER that is very close to the border with Alsace, France.As you noted, the name is spelled countless different ways:Dierwaecter, Duerrwaechter, Thuerwaechter, Thurwechter, Thurwachter, Thierwaechter, Thürächter, Tarwater, Duerwechter, Derwachter, Derwacter and Derwecter are some of the spellings I've seen.Here's a heads up: some of my data comes from unsourced charts that I have not had time to verify, so you;ll need to document the info. better if you want to be certain of the facts.
Thuerwaechter (Tuerwaechter) is an old German word meaning "door-watcher", i.e., the person who guards the door.Most researchers trace the family back to Anna Catharina Hummel b. 1705 Lancaster PA who m. Peter Dierwaechter b. 1700 Freckenfeld, Rhineland-Pfalz GER in Lancaster Co..PASome of the descendants who spell their name Tarwater have proposed an alternate husband for Anna Catharina Hummel: Heinrich Thurwaechter b. abt. 1699 Baden GER, whose sons emigrated to PA between 1750-65.Both Peter and Heinrich raised families around Freckenfeld.It's not known whether they were related, nor is it clear in some cases whose kids were whose.
Here is a likely line from Freckenfeld GER to Muskingum Co. OH.If anybody has more authoritative info., I welcome corrections:
Peter Dierwaechter b. 1700 Freckenfeldm. Anna Catharina Hummel b. 1705
Johann Theobald/Diebold Duerrwachter b. abt. 1715 Freckenfeld m. Maria
Catharina Geiger b. 17?? Freckenfeld
Johannes "John"Derwacter/Derwachter b. 1742 Freckenfeld, d. 1812
Muskingum Co OH m. Naomi ? (probably Naomi Brookover b.1745
Prussia GER)and Catherine Baumann b.abt. 1746 PA, in what order I do
not know.He had 8 or 9 children.John Derwacter's will is on file in
Muskingum Co.;a copy can be ordered from SamPubCo, but it is really
dark and degraded, almost impossible to read.
John had at least 8 or 9 children, among which
Among John's children: Jacob and Eva (my direct ancestor):
1.Elizabeth, b. abt 1765 York Co PA, d. 1812/20, m. #1 ?#2 John Blocher
2.John, b. 1766? York PA, d. 1859 York PA
3.Jacob, b. abt 1768/70, d. before 1870, m. #1 Catherine
Wion/Wyant b. abt 1770 York Co PA, m. #2 Nancy Caynester/Kinester
or Nancy McHenry b. 1797
4.Fanny, b. abt. 1767, York PA, m. Unk. Blocher.
5.Catherine. b. abt 1769/70 York PA, m. John Messimore
6.Nancy Anne, b. abt. 1770 York PA, m. John Scofield
7.Barbara, b. abt. 1773/74, m. Jacob Messimore.
8.Eva, b. 1780/85? PA, m. Frederick Peter Wion/Wyant b. 1781.
Other proposed child:Elizabeth, b. abt 1776
Eva Derwacter Wion died at age 42, probably during childbirth; she was one of the first persons bur in what became Blue Rock Baptist Cem., Muskingum Co.An early union school (1821) was built on Frederick P. Wion's land; he d. Rensselaer IN and is bur Western Cem., Rensselaer.On Ancestry there are photos of his sons Fred. Peter Wion b. 1805 MD and David Thomas Wion b. 1820 Muskingum Co OH.
Acc. to family stories, Jacob Derwacter was very abusive to his wife Catherine--he allegedly beat her, and at one point locked her out of the house in the dead of winter.She took refuge in the household of brother-in-law Peter Wion and was ultimately granted a divorce--highly unusual in those days.
A heads up on the Wions:there are sev. distinct and apparently unrelated or remotely related lines:Weygandt/Wyant/Wion from Johann Nicolas Weigandt b. 1844 Schornheim? GER this is the one usually found in Muskingum Co.).The other is Weiand/Weyend/Wiant/Wion from George Weiand b. 1745/50 GER?Efforts are underway currently to sort out the two families.An appeal is out to male Wions of either family who carry the name straight back to submit DNA samples.The findings thus far can be view at "The Wyant DNA Project":
Interested Wions/Weyands/Wyants please contact Project administrator John Wion at email@example.com