Newspaper clip „Neue Westfälische“ from 5th October 1992:

The meeting in Scherfede organised with Willi Thonemann: Ralf Thonemann from Düsseldorf (centre) explains the family coat of arms to another Thonemann.
Photo: Kleibrink

86 came to the Thonemann meeting in Scherfede

A confidant of the Kaiser

Scherfede (bk). On Saturday 86 bearers of the name Thonemann travelled to Scherfede from all over Federal Republic in order to celebrate a two-day family get-together in the multi-functional hall there. The second meeting of this kind since 1951 was organised by Willi and Ralf Thonemann.

Actually all the participants would have had to have been owners of a fenced in, fortified yard – therefore farmers – as this is what the name from the Low German means: Thon, Thun or Theune stands for Zaun „fence“. However in the Warburg parish registers and chronicles mention is already made in 1331 of woolweaver and councillor Hermanus II de Thone. Member of the council of the town of Warburg, Hermann I Thonemann is, in fact, mentioned already in 1282 – the change from the individual variations of the name like Thönemann, Thonen and Theune to the family name Thonemann first developed in the course of the centuries.

Thus in the latest compilation of the family history by Maria Plaggenborg (née Thonemann), you can read among other things about the founder of the endowment for the poor of the town of Warburg, Johannes III Thone (born 1400), about the Abbot of the Zisterzienser Abbey Hardehausen, Martin I Thone (died 1567), about the Master of the fine arts and founder of the Marianum grammar school, Heinrich Thönen (born 1563), as well as about the Doctor of Theology and confidant of the Austrian Kaiser Leopold I and Karl VI, Vitus Georg Thonemann (died 1740).

In his ceremonial address, Hermann Hermes, the deputy mayor, underlined the great importance of the Thonemanns as one of the oldest families of Warburg. He presented Maria Plaggenborg with the two volumes of the Warburg town history in gratitude for her extensive research. Since 1984 the Thonemanns are allowed to keep a coat of arms in order to „strengthen and to promote also visibly to the outside“, according to Ralf Thonemann, the togetherness of the family – the most important social unit in our society.

Ralf Thonemann had one specially designed and officially recognised as a civic coat of arms in the centre of which the name-giving fence stands.
Furthermore the foundation of a Thonemann family association is planned with whose help further family history, scholarly studies are to be striven for. Besides family trees and chronicles, of course, coffee, cake and an evening meal were provided as well as the opportunity for conversation and good company for the participants.