Dupont settlers and their descendants in the former Austro-Hungarian Empire

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Welcome to the Dupont Banat Research Project

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Introduction

These Kulturbund women walked through a narrow time frame towards an unknown destiny. They perhaps didn't have much choice at the moment. However, they did not expect to be captured, tortured and killed by their neighbours or to be deported to Russia. As children we often listened to the stories from the old homeland, but we did not understand much. Now, the grandparents have since passed away and our parents are also old and yet we still don't understand. Our feeling is that we will not gain the knowledge if we do not ask and search for it now. We also feel that we do not have much time left to do so. The first step is to seriously collect data and facts. At this point, the collection isn't more than data and facts and we don't know if it will ever be more than that.

My mother, my uncle, my grandparents, all the banater relatives told me that our ancestors came from Alsace-Lorraine. But when asking them why these ancestors left their homelands and where they exactly did come from, even the grandparents could not answer these questions. We also failed to ask our grandparents about their parents and grandparents when they were still alive. Now, our parents can only tell us the names of their grandparents and their birthdates, if we are lucky.

 

 

 

 

 


 

Stefan Jäger: Die Einwanderung der Schwaben in das Banat

The other great question is the question for reasons for the big desaster in 1944. Ethnic conflicts and the National Socialism with racism and anti-semitism were the background of the ominous development since 1933, of course. But what motivated the players to do what they did in detail? Phedr Lui, my grandfather, was a merchant as his father was. He was working for Strasser & Koenig Co. Gross-Betschkerek, a jewish company. Dealing in an multiethnic environment and being employed by a jewish company required being able to cooperate with all of them. Grandfather answered, when he was asked for the reasons of working with the jews instead of the Agraria: "who can't deal with them should let it be. We owe them everything we have." But why did the both employees of Strasser & Koenig who lived in Schendjuri disappear suddenly?

Documents were lost and the memory fades. Some few pictures remained, that's all. Now we are reading the books, asking the surviving, visiting the archives and scanning the internet. We will see what we can achieve.

Origin of the Dupont surname

Although the project focuses on the Dupont branch of my ancestors, all occuring surnames will be explored and examined step by step. The priority of the Dupont surname is due to the obvious relation to the french cultural space and my curiosity what our family has to do with these unknown frenchmen of the past, called Dupont. However, you will find some usefull information about the Birkenheier, Gutekunst, Barbie and other related families.

This means that our research topic is not limited to identify all the Dupont settlers and their descendants in the Banat but includes also the identification of the origins in their homelands and tracking them back to the very first documented occurence of their ancestors there. When asking this way, we should be aware that there are some limitations concerning the timeframe within we will be able to find something. Although surnames occured the first time during the 11th century in northern France where we want to search our Dupont ancestors, the usage of surnames wasn't common everywhere and at least not always usual under the simple people. Another limitation narrows our timeframe even more. The documentation of life events by parish records started in Europe with the Tridentinum in 1563. The recording of deaths, however, was'nt obligatory and became usual later. Further, many documents were lost during the Thirty Years' War. So we should be aware that we might reach our limits with the beginning of the 17th century.

The Dupont surname is very common in France and other french speaking countries. The frequency is similar to the german surname "Müller" or the english "Miller". Although this seems to complicate the research it doesn't in fact. At least the second generation after the settlement in the Banat and their descendants were bearing name variants in an characteristic way, preserving them even when emigrating to the USA or returning to their old homelands.

History of the Banater Dupont families

The son of my cousin wondered what a silly name the Dippong surname seems to be. In fact, this surname is not an usual one in Germany and provoces questions where it came from. We find recently about one hundred name bearers with slight variations in Germany and overseas. Surprisingly we can demonstrate that all of them are descendants of not more than two or three banater settlers of the 18th century with the surname Dupont.

 

Jean Dupont The Jean tree is currently the only almoust completely explored tree of the Dupont clans. We know the place of origin as well as the different branches of the descendants in Europe and overseas. The settler came from the village Tellin, today located in Wallonia in the Kingdom of Belgium. He was registered on 04 Jun 1770 (WK126/106) in Vienna and arrived on 01 Jul 1770 in Jahrmarkt, where he was billeted for some weeks and stayed there until 1773. Then he moved to Triebswetter and was known there as home- and landowner since 17 Mai 1774.

Gerard Dupont This settler family was completely unknown until i found the record randomly at WK158/69. while searching for another settler with the first letter P. However we don't have more information about this group of five persons, registered in Vienna on 24 Mai 1774, except the detail from Stader that it was a couple with three children. According to Wilhelm/Kallbrunner they came from Lorraine with destination Temesch county. There may be a relation to Nicolas Dupont due to his marriage date 1775 in Triebswetter. We have some unexplored Gerard Dupont records fitting with the timeframe in the Ardennes area (Vireux-Wallerand).

Nicolas Dupont The first occurence of this settler was in the marriage records of Triebswetter in 1775. Our theory is that he is related in some way to Jean Dupont due to the same surname, but we aren't able to verify this until today. Neither a registration record in Vienna nor his place of origin is known. However, we have a well explored tree of descendants. He moved to Kathreinfeld after 1794, when this village was founded as secondary settlement.

Daniel DipponThe Dippon family is known until today in the area of Beutelsbach Baden-Württemberg, Germany. The Daniel Dippon branch emigrated from there to Transylvania in 1847. We know the surname Dippon as well as Dipong in Lugosch Temesch county of Hungary. While the Dipong families there are related either to the Jean tree or the Nicolas tree in Ostern we can't currently be sure if Daniel Dippon is also playing a role in Lugosch.

Adam Dupont Adam was known as a settler due to record information of his place of birth Otzenhausen, His record in Vienna was found although his registered name Tibau was quite different. Adam arrived in Vienna on 18 Mai 1766 (WK066/41) but from there his trace was lost. I am sure having found him finally in Sackelhausen.

Other early recordsDominique Dupont from Tarquimpol. Dominique was the first husband of Catherine Nicolas from Lindre-Basse. Catherine had at least a son Nicolas with Dominique. She died in 1771 in Mercydorf.

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