Thursday, March 8, 2012

To California!

April 23 1849, George Henry left the mills in charge the charge of his wife Catherine and general-overseer Noah Pennington. Listen to the podcast in the sidebar to hear the beginning of the story.
The shiplist and positions in the company were recorded in the New York Herald April 30, 1849. The list shows  George Waesche as president of the company and his son William Henry Waesche. It also shows two of George Henry's nephews, Dr. Frederick Maund who was the company's surgeon and
Repold C. Maund, as secretary and 26 others who were headed to claim their wealth in the hills of California.
Check out the whole list here.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Church and the Family

While living and working the Double Pipe Creek Farm, George Henry and his wife Catherine, had eight children. George Washington Waesche was born 31 Oct, 1829, on the Wakefield Valley Farm while the rest were born after the Double Pipe Creek purchase.
William Henry Waesche (21 Feb 1832)
John Frederick (5 Oct 1834)
Joseph Abraham (6 Feb 1837)
Mary Elizabeth (24 Jul 1839)
Thomas Repold 8 Oct 1841
Charles Albert (8 Jan 1844)
Leonard Randolph (31 Mar 1846
James Theodore (4 Apr 1849)
All of the children lived to adulthood but Mary Elizabeth, who died after just two days of her birth. Short accounts of their lives will come later in the course of the blog.

In 1835, George Henry donated about two acres of the farm for a Methodist Episcopal church and cemetery to be built and used by the community. The church was nicknamed Waesche's Church and was used until 1929. Margaret B. recounted:
The stone building was well preserved until that date ... About this time, the three living sons, Charles, Randolph, and Theodore each rescued one of the original pews. Rather hard narrow seats, with straight backs. The writer sat in one, found it uncomfortable, and not a restful place for napping nor were the sermons of those days conducive to restful sleep. 

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Double Pipe Creek Farm

In 1832, George Henry sold the Wakefield farm and bought a 585-600 acre spot of land, dubbed the Double Pipe Creek Farm. The land became extremely productive and benefited both the family and the community.
Here's a great article on the community of Double Pipe Creek. Some of the article, written in 1895, describes the area's history as follows:

The land on which the village now stands and the surrounding vicinity embracing about 600 acres called “Prosperity,” was in 1794 owned by Joshua Delaplane, in which year he founded a large grist mill with a capacity of 100 barrels of flour per day, on the Frederick side of the stream of Double Pipe Creek.  Joshua Delaplane was a manufacturer of some note in his day and carried on not only the grist mill, but a woolen mill, and a saw mill on the opposite side of the creek in Carroll county, with saw mill attached to said woolen mill.  The woolen mill still stands, but no looms have made music within its walls for these many years, (since 1849).

The said Joshua Delaplane in 1835 sold his mill properties and land in the vicinity to Henry Waesche, and from 1835 to 1847, no changes of any consequence occurred.  In 1849 Henry Waesche sold the milling properties to Henry McKinstry, and a few years later the land was purchased by Elder Daniel P. Sayler.  Waesche, during the “Gold Fever” of 1849, in company with William Waesche, John Landers, Frederick Miller, and many Baltimoreans, started to California in search of gold.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Land, Marriage, and the Beginnings of a Family

George Henry was a hard worker, 5'9", strong and well built, with fair blue eyes, and full of ambition. He studied with Mr. David Cassell for several years until he was ready to manage his own land. He and Catherine Cassell were married on the 27th of November 1828, in Frederick, Frederick County, Maryland. Around that same time, George Henry purchased the Wakefield Valley Farm; located near the town of Westminster, it was later called the John Smith Farm. His first purchase of land ushered in a series of land purchases and sales that occurred over the next fifteen years. Carroll county soon became well acquainted with the Waesche family. Here Catherine and George Henry's first son, George Washington Waesche, was born on 31 Oct 1829. Here's a picture of Catherine in her later years from Margaret's book.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012


I recently found a document that states that on 23 Oct 1828, George became a naturalized United States citizen. I found this naturalization card found on which gives a glimpse of the journey he took in his youth. His passport, I later found on records his naturalization, as well as his physical appearance. What stories lay between the years recorded in these documents? I assure you, there are several to tell.

National Archives and Records Administration (NARA),Washington D.C.; Passport Applications, 1795-1905; ARCIdentifier 566612 / MLR Number A1 508; NARA Series:  M1372; Roll # 29.
Index to Naturalization petitions to the US Circuit and District Courts for Maryland 1797-1951. 21. National Archives.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Adventures on Land and Sea

George Henry's brother Frederick had immigrated years earlier to work with their uncle, George Repold. George Repold  immigrated to America soon after the Revolution, and had become a successful merchant and influential figure in Baltimore. Margaret B. wrote of him, "His Clipper Ships plied the seas, and he directed with great foresight his wholesale business with England, Germany, and the Indies." Three of his ships were destroyed in the Napoleonic wars after their illegal seizures by the French. It is interesting to note, that the compensation claims for the ships have never  been entirely settled. Frederick received the inheritence of their uncle's real estate. Although he was mentioned Repold's will, George wasn't qualified to inherit as he was not yet an american citizen and considered "an alien."

After George Henry joined his brother in Baltimore in 1821, he made a trip to Europe and around Cape Horn on one of the Waesche clipper ships. His itch for seafaring life, as we will see, transcended the generations and has manifest in the lives of many Waesche decedents.
When his adventures turned back to the mainland, George was sent to Carroll County Maryland to become a farmer. While his brother was busy in Baltimore, George paid two hundred and fifty dollars each year for boarding and to be taught farming in the home of David Cassell. 
Margaret B. recounts, "How well farming was learned, the writer knows not, but from family gossip, he learned better how to love David's niece, Catherine Cassell."

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Young Immigrant

Margaret B. Waesche often quoted Charles S. Albert who, at the funeral of Metta H. Maud said, "He that stands on the other side of birth to send us here, stands also on the further side of death to receive us there ."
George Henry Waesche's was born in  Oedesse, Edemissen, Germany (near Peine) 24 Sep 1807, to John Henry Waesche and his second wife. George's mother died three years after he was born and Margeret B. nicknamed her, "Gretchen."
When George was born, he had one older brother, Frederick (from his father's first wife), who was in his 30s and living with his family in Baltimore Maryland. Little research has been done in German records for more information on George's heritage and his early life. This is a project that I look forward to do in the future. All we have recorded is that he went to school in Bremen and immigrated to Baltimore in 1821 to live with his brother. Margaret recorded he came across on the ship Clara under the lead of a Captain Parker. The shiplist has not yet been personally identified, but his naturalization record confirms the year of immigration. Still engrossed in youthful adventure, George couldn't bare to settle down for a few years after his arrival in the new world.

Waesche, 66
Index to Naturalization petitions to the US Circuit and District Courts for Maryland 
1797-1951. 21, M1168, Roll 17. National Archives,