Thomas Haemerken or Hammerlein Also known as Thomas A'kempas

Essay by steven1987A+, May 2004

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Thomas Haemerken or Hammerlein was born in the lower Rhine District in Kempen Prussia which is now in present day Germany. The lower Rhine District was the capital of Cologne and the third largest district of Prussia. In the year of either thirteen eighty or thirteen seventy nine Thomas was born. Thomas's birth place Kempen is where his most known last name a'Kempas was derived Thomas would not be known by this name until the time of his schooling in Deventer. Thomas's parents were John and Gertrude Haemerken or Hammerlein. Gertrude his mother was the keeper of the village's schools, and his father John most probably was a black smith or a metal worker of some kind. Being a smith or metal worker in Thomas's time was more than likely most common job for the average man in Kempen. This is also the most likely meaning of Thomas's father's last name Haemerken or Hammerlein.

The names Haemerken and Hammerlein seem to be a derivative of the Latin word for a little hammer. Thomas had one sibling that has been proven to definitely have been his brother. This brother's name was John. John was older than Thomas by at least around fourteen years. Thomas's family was of the artisan class during that time.

Thomas was only around twelve or thirteen when he left his home in Germany and set out on his journey of life. Thomas's first stop the school of Deventer which was in Holland. John Thomas's brother John had gone to this school at least ten to twelve years earlier. Despite the large amount of time between John's and Thomas's departures Thomas still expected to find his brother John in Deventer when he arrived. Upon arrival Thomas did not find John but rather found out that John had left...