I’m sorry it’s taken so long to get back to you.It would be great to be able to establish a connection.The information you posted presents remote possibilities.Although I am presently inclined to say that we are not related, you have mentioned one thing that intrigues me a little.Maybe something below will strike a note with you.My Thurmer family research is by no means complete.
One very remote connection may be found through your “Baker” line.It is not uncommon for cousins to inter-marry; I have plenty in of cousins marrying in my family lines.It may take a lot of dedicated research on your part to find out, but I have to say, it does make me a little curious.For more information continue reading.
The earliest “Thurmer” ancestor that my cousin Jerry Price and I can presently determine that we are related to is George Thurmer who was born in Prussia roughly around 1814 (according to census records).He almost certainly arrived in America in 1847 (or possibly before) onboard one of the several ships owned by George Frederick Gerding, a successful German entrepreneur who began a “German” colony in the hills of East Tennessee called Wartburg, (present day Morgan County, TN).The name of his company was “The East Tennessee Colonization Company.”My present “Thurmer Project” is to try to determine the exact ship on the exact date that he arrived in this country.One lead in particular looks quite promising, but it may be some time before all possible records can be searched.
A very informational eight chapter thesis written in 1925 by Hobart Schofield Cooper can be found at this website:
Our George Thurmer is named twice in Chapter 4.
If you and I are related it would seem at this time that our common ancestor would had to have been a brother of George Thurmer.I suppose it is possible that “my” George Thurmer arrived with a brother, but it doesn’t quite make sense that one of his siblings would have split off from George upon entering America.The reason I say this is that there was already an attractive “settlement” planned for these contingents of Germans arriving on Mr. Gerding’s ships, and the fact that I have, as of yet, found no connection to any Thurmers outside of East Tennessee that could substantiate any relation to “mine and Jerry’s” Thurmers.If you can find a connection to East Tennessee we may be in business.
Keep in mind that that there WERE families with the surname “Thurmer” in America BEFORE “my” George arrived.However, no evidence gathered at this point suggests that “my” Thurmer ancestors were even remotely related to anyone in this country BEFORE they arrived.Also keep in mind that the spelling T-h-u-r-m-e-r is very possibly phoenetic (spelled by record keepers) and may very easily have been spelled differently (Teurmer?, Turmer?, Tuermer?) in the country of their origin, and/or on ship records, and/or after they arrived.
My George apparently arrived at the port of either New York (most likely) or New Orleans (less likely) with his two children in tow.His two children were a son Harmon (Hermann) George Thurmer (born 1841), and a daughter Alvenia Thurmer (born around 1846).I am very much of the mind to suggest that George’s wife died during the transatlantic voyage.I base this on a “family lore” statement that one of his descendants I have spoken to remembers being repeated when she was young, and the fact that people often died crossing the Atlantic, and documentation that the conditions onboard Mr. Gerding’s ship were not always conducive to a healthy lifestyle, (nor any other ships for that matter), and the fact that a female of the age to have been his wife never appeared in any records (that I have found).Nor did he ever re-marry.
Unless you descend from a BROTHER of George (since there are no other known children of George), the only other Thurmer that would make us cousins would almost have to be a descendant of Harmon (Hermann) George Thurmer, (since Alvenia’s descendants had the surname BAKER).UNLESS, UNLESS, there is a BAKER connection.
George’s daughter Alvenia:
I know almost nothing about her.She married William BAKER in Knox County on Oct. 9, 1870.Although other “BAKER’S” appear in the 1880 census in the general geographic location, there is no “William & Alvenia BAKER” found that fits their description.In addition no information has thus far presented itself to indicate that they either remained in Tennessee, or moved elsewhere.I haven’t searched local land records to see when they may have sold or bought land.Maybe your Robert BAKER-Denise THURMER Callahan connection has something to it?Cousins?None of William & Alvenia BAKER’S children or descendants are known to me at this time.Inasmuch as I can tell, they simply disappeared after they married.A convenient explanation would be that they moved to another state.Maybe they or their descendants moved into the geographic area indicated by your posting.It would be nice to know.
George Thurmer’s son Harmon:
Harmon (Hermann) George Thurmer (26May1841-6Jun1892?) served as a Private in the Union in the Civil War and had a total of 6 children.As an aside, I believe the death date listed on his grave marker to be erroneous and more likely that of his father since he clearly appears in 1900 Knox Co., TN Census with his wife, two of his children, and a daughter-in-law.The possible reason for this “date anomaly” can remain reserved for later discussion.Harmon married Nancy Anna Armtrong (1840-1911), daughter of Alexander Morrow Armstrong and Martha (Patsy) Merriman, in Knox County, TN on 7 Jun, 1868.Harmon and Nancy’s two twins (born 1873) died in infancy, and of the remaining four children (born between 1862-1881) three were males and one was a female.Yes, it appears that two of their children were born out of wedlock.At least that is what current records indicate.They were all born and died in East Tennessee, and I have the names of all of these children’s offspring.As of today, nowhere in my database 123 THURMERS and 66 of their spouses does the name “Callahan” occur.
There are only two other tidbits of information (most likely inconsequential) about Harmon G. Thurmer’s family that I can think of that may offer someone an incentive to join in and explore the Thurmer’s a little further.
One is a gap of 8 years (1873-1881) in the birth of his known children.The gap could be (most probably) explained by the lasting shock of losing twins in infancy, or seemingly less likely, maybe there was another child (or more) born that has not yet surfaced.There is nothing at this time to suggest that there were other children.
The other tidbit is that it has been documented that at least one of Harmon’s children traveled as far West as New Mexico (and possibly California where some families from the local community had earlier relocated) in the mid-to-late 1880’s, only to return to East Tennessee before or during 1889.Although this son later traveled to another southern state, he had already established his family (I have the names of all of his children and most descendants) and eventually returned once again to Tennessee where he died in 1944.During his travels in the 1880’s did he visit a relative?Nothing suggests this, but it is remotely possible.
I presently know of no other Thurmer’s of East Tennessee migrating, traveling, or starting families in any other states during the time period that might possible fit into your KNOWN information.That is (and I’m hoping here): Unless something turns up in your Robert BAKER-Denise THURMER Callahan marriage.Was Robert a descendant of William Baker and Alvenia Thurmer of East Tennessee?
Again, anything is possible, and if you are able to make any connection Jerry and I have done quite a bit of research on this line and would be excited to learn more.We could use all the help we can get.
If you have more information or if I can help you in any way, let me know.