Jost Quintin, host at The Swan in Oppenheim, was a grandfather of a 1709 Palatine emigrant to New York who was an ancestor of mine.
Being a member of Flagon and Trencher by virtue of descent from Maria Truax, an interesting tavern keeper in New Amsterdam, I was motivated to find out more about him. In the process I found another family of tavern keepers.
I also found a human interest story of the lives and times of these ancestors. In 1600 Oppenheim was a thriving city comparable to its neighbors Mainz and Worms. By the end of the century it was a devastated ruin. My ancestors experienced it all: war, fire, plague, famine. Finally, when the situtation became intolerable, they fled down the Rhine to New York in 1709.
This web page is an expanded version of my article, "The Rose, The Swan, and Gertraud Steinkopf," NYG&B Record, Vol. 131, No. 2 (April 2000), pages 96-104. This has the detailed foot notes for all the genealogical data presented here. Please see the article if you want the exact citations for the vital statistics. [top]
The story of this family in America is given in Henry Z Jones, Jr., The Palatine Families of New York, Universal City, 1985, pages 747-749. There we read how family appears in the lists of those fleeing germany and their subsequent settlements in New York.
The Oppenheim Protestant church records have been microfilmed. These start in 1567 to 1580 depending on the type of record. Although these are all identified as the St. Katharinen Reformed Church records, volume 4 actually is the first book of the St. Sebastian Lutheran Church. And volume 2 has some Catholic Church records from the period of the Spanish occupation.
The various pastors performed their record keeping function with varying degrees of success and I have been able to read the records with varying degrees of success. (Corrections are most welcome.) There are some gaps in the records but none relevant to this study.
St. Katharinen Reform. Gemeinde Kirchenbuch, vol. I, LDS microfilm 1270193 item 4
St. Katharinen Reform. Gemeinde Kirchenbuch, vol. II, LDS microfilms 1270193 item 5 and 1270194 item 1 (also contains some Catholic Church records)
St. Katharinen Reform. Gemeinde Kirchenbuch, vol. IV, LDS microfilm 1270194 item 3 (actually contains records from St. Sebastian Lutheran Church)
These records often give the occupations of men. This is the key information for tracing the history of the taverns. Probate records are not available.
Women are usually mentioned only in connection with a man: they are the daughter, wife, or widow of a man. Maiden names can only be inferred if she is noted as a daughter of a man.
The St. Katharinen Church was originally built as a three-nave Romanesque basilica in the early 1200s. But the archbishop of Mainz elevated it to a collegiate church and it was expanded in the Gothic style in the 1300s. In 1333 the stained glass window called the "Oppenheimer Rose" was funded by city council members. The late-Gothic western choir was built in 1415-1425. The French destroyed the city and damaged the church in the 1689 plundering and burning of the Palatinate. Subsequently the city was re-built in the old style and the church repaired. St. Katharinen today is counted as one of the most significant examples of Gothic architecture along the Rhine.
Two more important sources on the history of the church and the town in general are
Peter Zschunke,Konfession und Alltag in Oppenheim, Franz Steiner Verlag, Wiesbaden, 1984
Peter Zschunke, "Die Katharinenkirche im Oppenheim der drei Konfessionen (1685-1822)," St. Katharinen zu Oppenheim: Lebendige Steine - Spiegel der Geschichte, Verlag der Rheinhessischen Druckwerkstätte, Alzey, 1989
Dr. Zschunke studied the city tax book of 1684 to provide locations of taverns and other businesses at that time. He touches on all aspects of this small city: the natural setting, the sanitary and fire protection issues, the religious and political life of the city and the demographics of the population over time. [top]
Chronology of Hosts at The Rose and The Swan
The Rose, the tavern with the longer history, first appears in connection with a woman named Anna and her three husbands. Her maiden name and parentage have not been found nor the date of her first marriage. Mattheys Friedrich, the first husband and host at The Rose, was buried at St. Katharinen 28 July 1592. She is noted on 12 November 1595 as his widow on the occasion of her marriage to Sebastian Diel, a cooper. He was buried on 8 May 1599 and was noted as the former host on the occasion of her marriage to Balthasar Fangdt, a journeyman potter from Koblenz, on 14 April 1600. This marriage lasted only a few months as Anna was buried later that same year on 11 September 1600. Balthasar Fangdt, her third husband, continued to manage The Rose until his death before 1626. The surname Fangdt is clearly spelled that way in the early records, but later it changes to Fauth and Fandt. Did the pronunciation change or did the spelling conventions?
Balthasar Fangdt married four times. His last wife was another Anna. She married, 16 February 1626, "Jacobus Roth" from Frankfurt. His occupation is not given in the record though space was left to enter it. Johannes Rhot [sic!], citizen and host at The Rose, and his wife Anna executed a land lease for an empty house lot outside the western city gate on 4 October 1627. This indicates that The Rose was probably in the near vicinity. The only nearby tavern on the 1684 map was about 65 meters east of this gate. Most of the other taverns were along the north-south road near the eastern edge of the city. (See the map.) At some point their marriage record was angrily cross-hatched out. When she subsequently married she was again referred to as the widow of Balthasar Fauth with no mention of this intermediate marriage. These sparse records do invite speculation!
Hans Burkhart Fauth was the next host at The Rose. He was a son of Balthasar Fangdt and his second wife. He was baptized 3 April 1608. He married firstly, on 17 June 1630, Catharina Meyer in the Franciscan Catholic Church. She was buried 5 January 1644 and the record states that she was the wife of the mayor of Oppenheim. He married secondly another Catharina, marriage record not found. He died before 18 April 1658 when the first banns of Christian Borkfeldt and his widow were published at St. Katharinen.
Christian Borkfeldt was named the host at The Rose in the record of their marriage in the St. Sebastian Lutheran Church on 17 May 1658. So again the subsequent husband took over the previous husband's business.
Ægidius Quintin was the next host at The Rose on record. He was a grandson of Balthasar Fangdt and a nephew to Hans Burkhart Fauth. He was baptized 2 September 1638. He was called a host, establishment not named, in the record of his first marriage (first banns 14 January 1666). He married again on 15 October 1678, but died soon after, being buried on 31 January 1679. In both of these records he is named host at The Rose. So he had succeeded to the family business.
The Quintins were hosts at The Swan, sometimes called The White Swan.
The location of The Swan was pointed out by a knowledgeable local historian as the present 36 Mainzer Strasse. In his youth it was still called The Swan and he had seen records going much further back naming it thus. It is now a restaurant. Opposite this location is 31 Mainzer Strasse - this he said was the probable site of the associated brewery.
There were two Jost Quintins, father and son. The elder married a widow Maria — on 24 October 1609. No occupation is noted in this record. He married secondly Catharina de Lett, a daughter of Johannes de Lett in November or December 1622. This record is undated but is bracketed by one dated 11 November and another dated 11 December. Both men are noted as hosts at The White Swan, Quintin at Oppenheim and de Lett at Frankfurt. The Quintin and de Lett surnames are presumably both of French origin and may indicate Huguenot refugee backgrounds. No children of this marriage or this couple's death records have been found.
Jost Quintin, the younger, was baptized 9 September 1610. He married Anna Maria Fauth, the daughter of Balthasar Fauth, late host at The Rose, on 3 June 1633. His occupation is not given on this record. Jost appears many times in the church records from 1639 onward as host at The Swan, beer brewer, and lodging provider. He was buried on 28 June 1657. After his death no one else is mentioned as tavern keeper there. His youngest son followed the allied trade of beer brewer, but apparently The Swan was no more.
The Huguenot Connection
The Quintins may have been part of the settlement of Dutch and French Calvinist merchants who were forced out of Frankfurt by religious oppression and encouraged to settle in Oppenheim by Prince Friedrich IV in 1609. The area of the city where they settled is still called "Welschdorf," (Stranger's Village). They were provided the former Franciscan Church to build their parish in. Unfortunately, no records from this church are known.
Quintin is Latin and means "the fifth born." According to tradition Quintinus (or Quentin) was a Christian missionary martyr who was beheaded on the road from Amiens to Reims about AD 300. His body was thrown in the Somme River. The site is the current city St. Quentin, France. He was especially venerated in northern France and Belgium. This area is probably where the saint's name developed into a surname. Later French Protestants flourished for a while in this region. But then they were suppressed and forced to flee.
Jost Quintin the elder married secondly Catharina de Lett, daughter of Johannes de Lett, in Oppenheim about December 1622. In this record both Jost Quintin and Johannes de Lett are termed "host at the White Swan," the former at Oppenheim, the latter Frankfurt. Quintin and de Lett are presumably both French names pointing to Huguenot orgins.
Please send any comments or suggestions to the author using the link at the bottom of the Al & Jim's Home Page.
Updated 7 November 2002.
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