Korndörfer History



Extracted from the Deutsches Geschlechterbuch Vol.64, 1935


German Lutheran family living at the beginning of the 20th century in Darmstadt, Mainz, Rossdorf. Freilaubersheim in Rheinhessen, Hochst in Odenwald, Frankfurt on the Main, Altona , Saarbrücken, Bischofsheim on the Main, Höchst on the Main, Leipzig, Mannheim, Michelbach in Hessen-Nassau. In the Netherlands in Amsterdam, Dordrecht, Den Haag, Arnheim and Katwyk. In London - England, Shanghai - China, New York - USA and in Rio Grande do Sul - Brazil.

The oldest document regarding a person named Korndörfer is from Oberfranken, in the Bayreuth and Münchberg regions. In the Land Records Book of Bayreuth from 1380-1392 Helmbrecht Kürmdorffer is mentioned being from the village of Nesse and Heinrich Kürndorfer from the village of Forkendorff, both villages located at the southwest of Bayreuth.

In the Book of Feuds of the "Markgraff" Friedrich I of Brandeburg, in 1421, and of the Count Hirschberg from 1532 there are documents investing Korndörfer's as landowners in the outskirts of Bayreuth and Münchberg.

In Münchberg there was a Korndörfer lineage around 1500. The Matriculates of the Leipzig University contain in its first volume no less than 8 Korndörffer's, all from the same region. The names appearing in this book are listed as follows: Korndorffer, Krindorffer, Kornderfeer, Kurrendorffer. The book mentions:

In the archive of Münchberg the name Korndörffer is mentioned frequently. The year of 1574 starts the records of the Münchberg's Church Book having many links to the name. There are many distinguished families, which are connected through parenthood. A Caspar Korndörffer, mayor of Münchberg, died in 1639. The families survived the destruction of the 30 Years War; but disappeared soon after from Münchberg, the latest record is from 1666.

Also on Eger there were early references to the name Korndörfer. In 1498 the name Johann Korndörffer is mentioned as cleric of the Regensburg's dioceses. In 1601 a Veit Korndörffer is mentioned as guardian of orphans and wills.

At the time of Luther an alchemist Bartholomäus Korndörffer was known. He published many scripts which can be still found at Libraries. However not much about the fate and life on this alchemist is known. In his scripts he mentions how, he as a bachelor, on a peregrination, meets a miner on one of his journeys, who was also an alchemist, however his science was kept secret. Later he traveled to Laibach, Milan and Venice, where he worked with the German alchemist Tauler. It seems that later he has been to Tunis.

The destruction of the 30 Years War hit hard the Korndörfer's from Oberfranken, erasing the records of the family and its ancestors.

After the war several Korndörfer families appeared in the Oberfranken region (specifically in Fichtel-Gebirge) such as in Fassmannreuth, a small and vastly scattered mountain village near the Bohemian border; also on Märhing1 , a neighboring village to Fassmannsreuth on the other side of the border . From these places a family left to the Asch region also on the border. Today (1934) many Korndörffer's still live there. Some family members left to Vienna and the so called "Vogtland", where today several branches of the Korndörfer family live.

Most of the family men where simple man, sometimes with high functions. One family, gone to Waldenburg, Sachsen, later went to Prenzlau , in Uckermark and adopted there the name Korndorff. This family spawned many Officer's, but today is dying out. A member of this family became Cavalry Colonel in the Hungarian service, was there enoblished and is buried in the Upper Pest

Another Korndörffer branch went to Rosswein in Sachsen, where in 1800 there was a Korndörffer "Ratskellermeister". From there the family left to Calw in Württemberg and Schiltach in Baden, where some became respected manufacturers.

At the end of the 30 Years War the name appears for the first time in the Hessen region.

The originator of this branch is Johann Jakob Korndörffer, Count's "Local Oberfauth"2 in Wöllstein, in the Rheinhessen region.

Through his sons Johann Gerhardt and Johann Michael the family splitted in two branches . The eldest son , Johann Gerhardt stayed in Wöllstein, the youngest went to Darmstadt and became the originator of a long and prosperous family.

The descendants of the eldest son Johann Gerhardt stayed in Wöllstein, where they ramified in many families. This ramifications lived there under very simple conditions. The last Korndörffer was a poor workman and all descendants emigrated to America by the middle of the 19th century.

One branch left for Odenbach on the Glan, probably attracted by the local mine. However this family branch did not succeed and immigrated to America. From Wöllstein Gabriel Korndörfer left in 1826 to the state of Rio Grande do Sul in south Brazil. He was there the originator of a family that became respected and widespread.

A great-grandson of the "Oberfauth", Johann Peter Korndörffer, went to Cleve and from there his family spread throughout the Netherlands, where today it is numerous. It developed several ramifications, from those many kept living under simple conditions, others have however reached good positions, many becoming Officers, Doctors and respected Merchants

Two relatives, uncle and nephew, went to London , their whereabouts is not known, but some rumors said they acquired great wealth.

Among the family branches that immigrated to Darmstadt one became a Civil Officer's family. Johann Michael Korndörffer was chamber lackey at the Count's court in Darmstadt. His son Friedrich Daniel joined the Prince's Woodsman. The youngest son of Friedrich Daniel, became Chief-Woodsman in Butzbach and became the founder of the widespread branch of the family in the upper Hessen region. An other branch went to Elbrighausen in the Biedenkopf region and arrived later in the Netherlands, where became catholic and still today flourish.



1 Several Korndörffer families were establishedIn Mähring since 1618 . During the 30 Years War the Church Book at Rehau shows many inscripted enrollments about them at that time, in which the church at Asch was inaccessible to the lutherans.

2The designation "fauth" is originated from the Pfalz region (ober = supreme, top). Its meaning is similar to the north German governor (Vogt). In early times the Pfalz region was divided in a number of "Fautheien", each with its own Fauth leading , they were chief officers and belonged mostly to the oldest lineages. Later the position of "Fauth" lost its importance, but undoubtedly Johann Jakob Korndörffer, "Local Oberfauth" was the most respected man in Wöllstein.


Webpage created 16 Jun 2001

Last Update 19 Dez Jun 2004