Passage from Germany to Germanna, Virginia
Jacob Holtzclaw was one of the fourteen German ironworkers, totally 42 people, from the town of Siegen and Muesen in the principality of Nassau-Siegen, Germany. Who upon an agreement with Baron de
Graffenreid to open the mines in Virginia. However, their arrival was early and surprised the Baron, as he had not had an audience with Queen Anne . The families so valued their freedom, they refused to
return to their homeland and found trades in Europe to support their families until Queen Anne opened the American mines. These were master mechanics, and were an intelligent, progressive set of
people, which turned Germanna into the first sector of industrialization for Virginia.
Lt. Governor Alexander Spotswood wrote to the Board of Trade in London in May 1714 stating the Germans were invited to Virginia by Baron de Graffenreid. Queen Anne opened the mines of Virginia,
and the fourteen families sailed to Virginia to settle the colony of Fort Germanna. The First Germanna Colony arrived in Virginia at Tappahannock in the spring of 1714, came up the Rappahannock
River where they settled 20 miles west of Fredericksburg. They named the colony in honor of both Queen Anne, and for their homeland, Germany.
The Holtzclaw Portrait
All of the American Holtzclaws descend from Jacob Holtzclaw and we have every reason to be proud of our ancestor. One of the first pioneers of northern Virginia, a scholarly and pious man who showed enterprise and initiative and accumulated a modest fortune. He was a teacher, a minister and a lay reader. He, as well as, many of the Holtzclaws are of highly mechanical and of notable worth, but it is the charming characteristics that BC Holtzclaw lists in his book,The Geneology of the Holtzclaw Family, which I hope to have available on this site by December 2012.
- Stature-Tall, blond haired, blue eyed, tow-headed, with a prominent nose and inclined to baldness.
- Moral Character - They admire prudence rather than rashness--what they call foolhardiness. While they don't usually have deep piety, they are quite temperate, and have a high standard of morality, while not being fond of gambling or strong drink. They are not usually very forgiving, and if someone has wronged them and then comes against hard times, they might state unsympathetically, "Good! He got what was coming to him". While, if a friend comes against hard times, you couldn't find a more sympathetic, giving and devoted friend.
- Independence-Independence is like breathing air to a Holtzclaw--they're passionately fond of personal independence, and deeply value the rights of others. This affection for independence leads them to not cooperate well with others, be quite self-assertive, have little regard for others opinions, and have a lot of ambition. This love of independence leads them to be well thought of, but not highly successful.
- Family-Holtzclaws are very loving to their families, devoted and faithful, fond of their homes and stay in it, and dotingly fond of their children. They value security and and love their land. They have a love of ease, and the ability to get along with very little, and enjoy a very simple life.
- Personality-They usually are quite shy, but they are quite the jolly fellow and very good company, having geniune fun in his character, at times, is quite witty. They are very opinionated on a variety of subjects, enjoy a good argument that might be more heated than enlightening. They have an empatic apathy toward ostentation and braggadio. There is in him a little Socratic irony, which while minimizing his own value, takes a slightly malicious delight in pricking the bubbles of other people's vanity, and more than that, secretly laughs at other people for accepting him at his own low valuation.
- Education and Success-Holtzclaws come from an old schoolmaster, and pride themselves on being well-read and well informed. They have common sense and book sense. He is economical and thrifty. They tend toward the orderly, logical type rather than the brilliantly inventive, nor are they clever with their hands or mechanically inclined.