52 Ancestors: #13 The Family Who Lived by a Pigpen in a Beautiful Village

Caspar BOTZ was born about 1753. He worked as a Schweinehirt or swineherd in Holzerath. According to Heinrich Wagner, the compiler of the Familienbuch Schöndorf, in early records, his surname was spelled BOTHS, in 1793 BOOZ, and in 1826 BOTZ. Another variation of the name was BOTS. Caspar died on 18 September 1826 in Schöndorf, Trier-Saarburg, Rhineland, Germany, at the age of 73 years. His parents, at this time, are unknown.

Caspar married Margaretha MASEN before 1787. Magdalena was born about 1766. In 1801 a record shows she was from Kell. Her parents are also at this time unknown. She died at the age of 60 on 6 February 1826 in Schöndorf. At the time, her maiden name was spelled MASHEIM. In the index of Alfons Tapp’s Familienbuch Saarburg – St. Laurentius 1581-1899 her maiden name is spelled MAHSON.

Caspar and Margaretha had the following children.

  1. Catharina BOOZ, born on 2 September 1787 in Holzerath, married Jakob FRANKREUTER (b. abt. 1800) on 11 February 1820 in Schöndorf. Jakob, the son of Josef FRANKREUTER and Clara BECKER of Weiskirchen, was a day laborer. Catharina and Jacob were the parents of three children, all girls, born between 1820 and 1824. Only one lived long enough to marry. Catharina died on 1 December 1853 in Schöndorf. Her husband died on 25 November 1877, also in Schöndorf.
  1. Maria BOOZ, born on 6 January 1789 in Holzerath, married Michael SCHNEIDER (b. est. 1778) on 25 January 1808 in Ruwer. The deaths of their first four children were found by the compiler of Familienbuch Schöndorf in the civil records of Ruwer. Michael, the son of Heinrich SCHNEIDER and Maria PORN of Hermeskeil, worked as swineherd, cowherd, and day laborer (Schweinehirt, Kuhhirt, Taglöhner). Maria and Michael had nine known children born between 1808 and 1823. The first four died very young, the five who lived (no dates of death were given) were all boys. No further information was found for this family group after 1823.
  1. Margaretha BOOZ was born on 17 April 1793 in Holzerath. In February 1814 she gave birth to a daughter who lived only a day. Margaretha married Johann SCHNEIDER, son of Matthias SCHNEIDER and Margaretha MÜLLER of Bonerath, on 21 March 1815 in Schöndorf. They were married in a religious ceremony the following day. Johann, who was born on 25 January 1793 in Schöndorf, worked as a horseherd (Pferdehirt). Johann and Margaretha were the parents of two daughters born in 1816 and 1818. Johann died 20 October 1837 and Margaretha on 26 February 1839, both in Schöndorf.
  1. Niklaus BOOZ, date of birth unknown, died on 3 March 1801 in Ruwer.
  1. Peter BOOZ born about June 1801. He died at the age of 18 months on 1 December 1803 in Ruwer.
  1. Helena BOOTZ, born on 11 December 1805 in Schöndorf, married Matthias JAEGER, a widower from Perdenbach, on 5 January 1830 in Schöndorf. No children were listed for this couple in the Schöndorf FB.
  1. Anna Maria BOTZ, born on 15 August 1808 in Schöndorf, married Johann GORGES, a widower and son of Johann Adam GORGES and Eva Clara RODENS, on 10 January 1833 in Fell. Johann was born on 21 January 1800 in Fell and died there on 21 April 1860. Anna Maria died on 13 December 1863 in Fell. Anna Maria and Johann were my children’s 4th great-grandparents. See 52 Ancestors: #32 Johann GORGES and Anna Maria BOTZ – 2 of 32.

The Swineherd - Anne Anderson
By Anne Anderson (1874-1930) [Public domain] via Wikimedia Commons
As mentioned at the beginning of this post, Caspar BOTZ worked as a Schweinehirt or swineherd in Holzerath and later in Schöndorf (beautiful village). He raised and herded pigs, either his own or those of a farmer who would have been paying him to do the work. Did Caspar live a life at the bottom of the village society or was his job better respected? How much different was the work and respect of a swineherd, shepherd, cowherd, or horseherd? In the Familienbuch Schöndorf there were many other men listed who worked as swineherds and even some of Caspar’s grandchildren continued to do the same work. Maybe Caspar was a prince in disguise like the swineherd in Hans Christian Andersen’s fairy tale.

With this post, I will be leaving the German countryside to return to Luxembourg. I’m looking forward to getting back to families for whom I have records or can find records for online. Although I’ve tried to make the posts for the German families a bit more interesting, it has been hard not having records. I’ve had to push myself to get this last one done. It is time to move on….


[1] Heinrich Wagner, Familienbuch Schöndorf 1686-1895 mit dem Filialien: Bonerath, Hinzenburg, Holzerath, Ollmuth zeit 1800, vorher in Familienbuch Pellingen, 1987/88: p. 47 family nr. 212. Botz-Masen family group; p. 74 family nr. 340a. Frankreuter-Botz family group; p. 298, family nr. 1359. Schneider-Booz family group; p. 299, family nr. 1361. Schneider-Booz family group; p. 513, family nr. 2469. Gorges-Grach and Gorges-Botz family groups; p. 137, family nr. 612. Jaeger-Bootz family group.
[2] Armin Giebel, Ortsfamilienbuch des StA Longuich bis Okt. 1931 (June 2013), p. 201, family nr. 895. Bootz-Maasem family group.
[3] Armin Giebel, Familienbuch Standesamt Ruwer-Waldrach, (Stand: Sept. 2016), p. 3243, family nr. 16479. Schneider-Boths family group.
[4] Richard Schaffner, Einwohnerbuch der Orte Fell u. Fastrau mit Fellerhof, Fellerburg und den verschiedenen Mühlen im Gemeindebereich 1665-1905, 2008/09, p. 106-107, family nr. 502. Gorges-Grach and Gorges-Botz family groups.
[5] Heribert Scholer, Familienbuch Farschweiler 1703-1899 A-Z, 1992, p. 69, family nr. 308. Gorges-Bootz family group.

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