Re: Patheal/Pathel suranme
first please excuse my bad "school-English".
My name is Tom Pathel and I`m 26 years old. We live near Munich / Bavaria.
I`m also interested in genealogical research and I searched for our name in the net just for fun.
I don`t know, if the american "Pathel" is a malapropism of "Patheal".
Our family history tells, that my antecedents came from Southern-France to Prussia (Pommern) in the 17th century, because they were prosecuted Huguenots. Their former name was supposed to be "de Pathel".
The first evidenced Pathel in direct lineage to my family was born in 1828 in Prussia. We couldn`t found older documents, because many of them was lost and destroyed in 1945, when Germans fled from the Russians.
But we found a "de Pate" in Breslau / Schlesien (also Prussia) in 1375. His coat of arms shows, that he had a special religion, an heraldic researcher told us (like the Huguenots). Perhaps there is a connection to the Pathel in Southern-France.
Till know we were not able to research in France, because nobody in my family speaks french in a tolerable way. But a friend of mine works now in France and tries to help me in my research.
Another friend of mine studies linguistics on the university and found out, that the name Pathel / de Pate stems from the Gothic word "badu", which means "fighter / struggler". I don`t know if it`s true. But he will give me a copy from the book he read this.
I hope I helped you a little bit in your reasearch.
I will contact the public record office of the city of Hamburg. When the antecedants of the american Pathels emigrated via Hamburg as most of German emigrants we perhaps could prove, that our families are related :)
Anyway I will send you the result of my request, if you are interested. If so please send me an email.