The above shield is called a speaking weapon which means it explains the name of the bearer. The dog is called a brackhund (brack-dog) which were raised on the farm of brackhunds. These were called "brackenhoff" and the owners of the farm took their name from that. According to text found beneath the weapon (but not included on this view), the family originates from Straßburg, Germany.
NOTE: It has not yet been determined whether this shield applies to this particular Brakenhoff line.
The BRAKENHOFF story, as far back as I have found records, begins with PETER WEITJES, baptized 31 August 1719 in Klein-Sander, Ostfriesland, Germany. He married HILLE HARMS (BRAKENHOFF) 9 May 1755 in Remels, Ostfriesland, Germany, daughter of HARMEN (BRAKENHOFF) and GEBKE MÖHLMANS, born 10 February 1718/19. PETER WEITJES was buried 27 August 1791 in Hollen, Ostfriesland, Germany. Children of PETER WEITJES and HILLE
are: 1. GEBKE PETERS (BRAKENHOFF), b. 06 May 1756; m. WATJE GERDES, 25 November 1785, Hollen, Ostfriesland, Germany. 2. WATJE (BRAKENHOFF), b. 02 August 1758; d. 15 July 1762. Watje was baptized 03 August 1758, Hollen, Ostfriesland, Germany and buried 17 July 1762, Hollen, Ostfriesland, Germany *3. HARM PETERS BRAKENHOFF, b. 17 October 1760, Hollen, Ostfriesland, Germany; d. 17 November 1828, Hollen, Ostfriesland, Germany. He married VOSSE EILERTS MÖHLMANN 12 June 1789 in Hollen, Ostfriesland, Germany, daughter of EILERT MÖHLMANN and ANNE JÜRGENS. She was born abt. January 1765, and died 25 August 1846. HARM PETERS BRAKENHOFF was buried 21 November 1828, Hollen, Ostfriesland, Germany. VOSSE EILERTS MÖHLMANN: was baptized 31 January 1765 in Hollen, Ostfriesland, Germany and buried 01 September 1846, also in Hollen. Children of HARM BRAKENHOFF and VOSSE MÖHLMANN are: i. HILLE HARMS BRAKENHOFF, b. Abt. April 1790; m. FRERICH SALOMONS MÖHLMANN, 11 May 1820, Hollen, Ostfriesland, Germany; b. 14 July 1787. She was baptized 03 April 1790, in Hollen, Ostfriesland, Germany. FRERICH SALOMONS MÖHLMANN was baptized 18 July 1898, in Hollen, Ostfriesland, Germany *ii. EILERT HARMS BRAKENHOFF, b. 22 July 1793, Nordgeorgsfehn, Ostfriesland, Germany; d. 27 June 1869, Germany. iii. PETER HARMS BRAKENHOFF, b. 26 September 1796, Ostfriesland, Germany; d. Ostfriesland, Germany. iv. JÜRGEN HARMS BRAKENHOFF, b. 14 July 1799; d. 09 March 1821. JÜRGEN was baptized 27 September 1796 in Hollen, Ostfriesland, Germany and buried 15 March 1821, Hollen, Ostfriesland, Germany. v. ANNA (BRAKENHOFF), b. 04 February 1803; d. 14 July 1811. ANNA was baptized 06 February 1803, Hollen, Ostfriesland, Germany and buried 19 July 1811, Hollen, Ostfriesland, Germany vi. HARM HARMS BRAKENHOFF, b. 01 January 1806; d. 20 February 1875. vii. SON BRAKENHOFF, b. 25 October 1809, Hollen, Ostfriesland, Germany; d. 25 October 1809, Hollen, Ostfriesland, Germany and was buried 26 October 1908, Hollen, Ostfriesland, Germany
For more information on some of the above individuals, please visit the World Connect link on Duane's Family. The following information pertains to the family of EILERT HARMS BRAKENHOFF, son of HARM BRAKENHOFF and VOSSE MÖHLMANN. (Note: Vosse is also found as Foske.)
Harm Peters, bachelor, a little older than 20, and Foske Eilerts Moehlmann, 24, were married in 1789 at their home in Ostfriesland, Germany. Their first son, Eilert, was born June 22, 1793 and baptized on July 25, 1793.
On November 10, 1826, Eilert Harms Brakenhoff, a bachelor aged 33 years, was married to Foske Hinrichs Schlang in Westerfeld, a subdivision of Hollen. Eilert and Foske had nine children, six of whom immigrated to the United States between 1852 and 1882.
Eilert died June 27, 1869, a colonist in Nordgeorgsfehn. The following remark dated August 20, 1869 accompanies the death certificate signed by Kittel: "In old church records the parents were only referred to as Harm Peters and Voske Eilerts. The father however carried the house name Brakenhoff and the other the name Moehlmann; for this reason I have registered them under their house name."
Foske Schlang Brakenhoff died September 2, 1884 at the age of 75 years and 11 months. Children known to be born to Eilert and Foske Brakenhoff are:
Harm Peters Eilers Brakenhoff was born January 8, 1827 in Nordgeorgsfehn and married Tette Oltmanns Busker from Jheringsfehn on January 28, 1855. Tette, born July 6, 1826, was the daughter of Oltmann Adams Busker and Ike Friederichs and had one known sister, Trientje Oltmanns Busker. Her obituary gives her maiden name as "Buss". This is the line from which my husband descends. Harm and Tetta immigrated to the U.S. aboard the "Ohio" from Bremen, arriving in Baltimore on September 23, 1882 with their children, Oltmann, Eilert, Icka, and Anna. Another daughter, Foskea, was not listed on the passenger list and I do not know when she immigrated; however, she married John Keiser on March 04, 1883 in Nokomis, Illinois. Harm and his family settled in Nokomis (where previous family members were already living) and attended St. Paul's Lutheran Church near there. After a couple of years, Eilert moved to Platte County, Nebraska, farming north of Columbus, and on October 2, 1888, married Rika Becher. Eilert's sister, Anna, moved to Platte County in the late 1890's and met and married Henry Johannes on September 17, 1897.
When Harm died of typhoid fever in Nokomis, Illinois on September 15, 1901, he was 74 years, 8 months and 7 days of age. He is buried at St. Paul's Cemetery, northwest of Nokomis.
Harm's wife, Tetta, left Nokomis with their unmarried, invalid daughter, Icka, to live with Eilert in Platte County. Initially Tetta and Icka lived with Anna and her husband Henry Johannes instead, but at the time of her death in 1908 she was living with the Eilert Brakenhoff family. Tetta, Icka and Eilert and his wife are all buried at St. John's Lutheran Cemetery, north of Columbus, Nebraska.
Oltmann became quite a popular and successful businessman in Nokomis and remained there most of his life. He moved to Chicago to live with his daughter after the death of his wife, Anna Brakenhoff (a cousin). His body was brought back to Nokomis to be buried beside his wife at St. Paul's Cemetery.
Anna Sophia Brakenhoff was born September 30, 1828. She married Heinrich Van Heufeln and, according to church records, died a widow on August 1, 1913 in Nordgeorgsfehn at the age of 84 years, 10 months and one day. Anna remained in Ostfriesland, but at least one son, Heinrich (Henry) Van Heufeln (born January 9, 1853), immigrated when he was approximately 18 years old. He settled in Nokomis and married Zeide Ubben Franzen on October 2, 1885. Other children of Anna and Heinrich Van Heufeln were Eilert Harms (born August 9, 1855), Gesche (born November 20, 1858); Harm (born August 12, 1861); Juergen (born September 26, 1864); Goke (born November 8, 1867); and Voske Theda (born April 18, 1876). An obituary has been located for Eilert Van Heufeln, who died June 18, 1911 at the age of 56 years in Nordgeorgsfehn.
Hinricus (Heinrich/Henry) Behrends Brakenhoff was born in Germany on May 5, 1831. According to the ship passenger list in Germans to America, there was a Henry "Brocknofe", age 18, who arrived in New York on July 16, 1852 with William Brocknofe, age 52. I have not been able to determine if this is the same Henry Brakenhoff, and if so, who William was. At this point in my research, it appears that Henry would have been the first of the Brakenhoff family to immigrate. It was recorded in the Portrait and Biographical Record, pg. 276, that Henry would have been forced into the German army at age 21, "and not being ambitious to become a soldier, and not being able to obtain the consent of the king to leave the country until he had served his time in the army, determined to leave without his knowledge or consent. "Accordingly, in 1851, and before he was twenty-one years of age, he quietly arranged with a friend from America, then visiting in Germany, to pay his passage to the New World, agreeing to work for him until his expenses had been made good." He proceeded at once to Alton, Illinois, and there found employment in the coal mines, thus earning the money to pay his friend for expenses incurred in the trip.
Henry was united in marriage on July 27, 1854 at Alton, Illinois to Miss Henrietta Carstens. He continued in the mine for five or six years, after which he engaged in farming near Mt. Olive. Two years later he again returned to the mines and then, in 1867, moved to a farm in Montgomery County, Illinois. Seven children were born to this union, four of whom survived their father at the time of his death in December of 1919. Also surviving him were two sisters [Foskea Brakenhoff Carstens and one in Germany] and his brother, Eilert. He was 88 years, 6 months and 28 days at the time of his death. He is buried at St. Paul's Cemetery, northwest of Nokomis.
Juergen (George) Brakenhoff was born in Ostfriesland, January 3, 1834. According to an article written in the Portrait and Biographical Record, pg. 267, George was one of a family of nine children. George immigrated in 1857, giving up the life of a sailor to seek his fortune in the U.S. He located at Mt. Olive, Illinois, and, in 1858, married Miss Trintje Arkebauer. In 1868 he and his family moved to Montgomery County on a farm in Nokomis Township. At the time of the Portrait and Biographical Record was written, two sisters had remained in the Fatherland; one sister married Henry Carsten, a leading citizen of Nokomis Township; four brothers (George, Henry, Eilert and Harmon) lived in Nokomis Township and the other brother [Fred] lived in Terre Haute, Indiana. He died March 4, 1898 at the age of 64 years, 2 months and 1 day and is buried at St. Paul Cemetery, northwest of Nokomis.
Eilert Brakenhoff was born July 23, 1836 in Nordgeorgsfehn. According to Germans to America, E. Brakenhoff, age 27, traveled on the ship Bremen from Bremen, arriving in New York on April 28, 1864. He located at Mt. Olive, Illinois and was united in marriage to Miss Trintje Jutting at Alton. A few months later the young couple moved to a farm northwest of Nokomis where they remained until approximately 1913 when they retired. Born to Eilert and Trintje were eight children, six of whom survived beyond infancy. Eilert died July 21, 1920 at the age of 84 years and 28 days and is buried at St. Paul Cemetery, northwest of Nokomis.
Foskea Brakenhoff was born February 1, 1839. According to her obituary, she "came to the United States in 1857. The following year she was united in marriage to the late Henry Carstens, in Alton, Illinois, and they came to this community [Nokomis] over 60 years ago from Alton. To this union were born eleven children, seven of whom survive their parents." Foskea died June 12, 1928 at the age of 89 years, 4 months and 11 days. She was the last of her family to survive; her parents, two sisters and five brothers having preceded her in death. She is buried at St. Paul's Cemetery, northwest of Nokomis.
Tete Brakenhoff was born July 3, 1841 in Nordgeorgsfehn and married Epke Lambertus, also from Nordgeorgsfehn, on November 8, 1865 in Hollen. Tete died there on December 22, 1919 at the age of 78, and is buried at Hollen. Children born to Tete and Epke were: Ubbo Friedrich (born March 6, 1866); Foske (born December 1, 1867); Hilkelina (born November 27, 1869); Anna Sophia (born October 15, 1871); Tettea Friederike (born July 16, 1874); Harmine Henriette (born September 29, 1875); Gesine Johanne (born August 7, 1877); Trientje (born April 22, 1879); Eilert (born February 11, 1881); and Hinrich (born April 3, 1883). All were born in Nordgeorgsfehn and baptized at the church in Hollen.
Frerich Brakenhoff was born December 13, 1844 in Nordgeorsfehn; baptized in Hollen on December 29, 1844; and died July 17, 1845. He was buried July 19 in Hollen.
Frerich (Fred) Brakenhoff was born January 29, 1847 in Nordgeorsfehn. I do not know when he immigrated; but, according to records, he was in Nokomis April 19, 1873 when he witnessed the Declaration of Intent of his brother, Eilert Brakenhoff, to become a citizen. Also, in the Portrait and Biographical Record, it was mentioned that he was living in Terra Haute, Indiana. Unfortunately I do not have the date of this publication, but think it would have been approximately 1890-1895. I have found no descendants, and do not even know for sure that he remained in the U.S. It has been rumored that he changed his name to Brown, but I have found no proof of that. Any leads on this line would be very much appreciated.
Sherri Brakenhoff © 2003