This homepage is an hommage to our ancestors. We often know so little about their lives although they are part of our our existence. Already the stories told by  grandparents or greatgrandparents enable us to realize our past. How much more alive would our family history be, if earlier generations were able to tell their stories. Even if there are only dumb witnesses of past.

One of these stories my grandpa Otto Gehrandt told me about twenty years ago. For the first time he mentioned the existence of a family Bible . In our region it seemed to be usual that every family had such a Bible. As I opened the Bible there was something inside arousing my interest. Inside the cover I found a little family tree. There were some gaps but these were exactly the reason for wanting to know more about my ancestors.


And so I started researching the Ge(h)ran(dt)'s family history....


At the beginning I could ask my grandparents for more details about their parents and grandparents. It was the easiest way to get some information about my ancestors. However it didn't make sense to ask for their greatgrandparents because they couldn't remember. That's why I had to look for new sources. I noticed that in our region most of the rectories keep old church books. So I visited the rectories of Falkenhagen, Meyenburg and Buchholz hoping to find any traces. And I did find some interesting church books, I had to visit the rectories more than once to get out all the information. Even for the tinniest details I had to spend a lot of time, because it is really hard to read and therefore to understand the old german handwriting - the Sutterlin.

extract from a church book

"Farmer Hans Joachim Gehrandt's wife Catharina Elisabeth Reihern

has given birth to a son on 1st february who was christened on 3rd february 

and was named Johann Joachim, witnesses has been  1 Mousquetier Joh. Friedrich Lob

2 Mousquetier George Delft 3 farmer Joachim Reiher's wife"

Well, I have learnt this handwriting gradually. From then on I was able to read the church books without the friendly support of pastors or archivars. And therefore I could intensify my church book's studies. After I got over some "dead points", I followed our family history until the 16th century. Besides these church books there were several webpages, genealogical and regional literature as well as the historical documents kept in the "Brandenburgisches Landeshauptarchiv" which were a valueable support for my genealogy.  


On the next pages you can find everything about my genealogy. I hope you'll have as much fun as I had researching our past.


If you have any questions about genealogy in general or especially to single parts of this homepage, you can mail me. And I ask every "unknown" Ge(h)ran(dt) to please get in touch with me.