Thonemann Family Day 1992

A major event in the last century was the second Thonemann Family Day in October 1992 with more than eighty Thonemanns in Scherfede. Ralf Thonemann from Düsseldorf, our family member and designer of our coat of arms had the idea in 1991 to hold another Thonemann Family Day. After nearly 40 years he said it was high time to meet up again. The last Family Day had taken place on 22nd and 23rd September 1951 in Scherfede (see section on “Thonemann Family Day 1951”). In the meantime besides the design of the coat of arms, new and interesting material on our family history had been compiled as a result of the comprehensive research of our family member Maria Plaggenborg, née Thonemann, from Cloppenburg.

The opportunity presented itself to present this to our Thonemanns within the framework of a Family Day over a weekend.

In September 1991 all known bearers of the family name were written to and informed of the plan. The resonance was so encouraging that on 23.02.1992 a so-called “Thonemann Representatives Meeting” was held in Düsseldorf. The aim was to prepare the Family Day. That morning the representatives, who came from Cloppenburg, Düsseldorf, Scherfede and Wuppertal laid the foundation for the second family meeting.

Tasks were delegated and energy and determination went into the preparation of the Thonemann Family Day 1992.

As an example of the tasks which were to be carried out, we would like to mention our family member and representative Willi Thonemann from Scherfede and his wife. They took care of the hiring of the shooting club hall in Scherfede including everything necessary to hold the Family Day, provided for our well-being and organised activities for the children. The co-operation of all representatives led to more than 120 family members from the whole of Germany, from Hamburg to Düsseldorf to Munich, putting their names down for our Thonemann Family Day 1992 on October 3rd and 4th.

The Agenda
click on the image to see the English translation

How the Thonemann Family Day went

Before the official beginning on Saturday, 3.10.1992, at 2 p.m., a sight-seeing tour of the historical scenes of the activities of the Thonemanns was conducted for those family members who had already arrived.

First of all, naturally, the place of origin of our family the city of Warburg was visited. There within the framework of a comprehensive tour of the town, the scenes of our forefathers were explored, such as Marianum grammar school, and the old and new towns. Finally the visit to the Hardehausen monastery gave an insight into the life and work of our famous forefather Abbot Martin Thonemann, who lived there as Abbot from 1544 to 1567. At the end we returned to Scherfede, where among other things the house of Judge Thonemann, Mönchhof, the Zehntscheune and the parish church built in the neo-Gothic style were visited.

In the meantime the rest of the family members from far and near met at the venue, the big shooting club hall in Scherfede.

According to the registration 83 Thonemanns had come. They viewed the family exhibition in the foyer. Here the genealogies of the various family trees, beginning with the original family in Warburg, from 1275 to the present day (1992), were presented. Besides historical photographs, newspaper clippings, drawings, documents, etc., also some reports from significant family events and personalities were exhibited.

Everything important for the understanding of the time of our ancestors and our history was available on the literature table, from books of coats of arms, books of contemporary history, the book of Wilhelm Thöne from 1936, the drafts of our family member Maria Plaggenborg etc. At 4 p.m. Hermann Hermes, the deputy Mayor of the city of Warburg, officially opened the 1992 Thonemann Family Day. He stressed in his ceremonial address the great significance of the Thonemann family as one of the oldest families of Warburg. As a sign of gratitude for the extensive research for our old patrician family, Maria Plaggenborg, née Thonemann, received two volumes with the title “Die Stadt Warburg – Beiträge zur Geschichte einer Stadt 1036 – 1986” (“The city of Warburg – Contributions to the history of a city 1036 – 1986”) from the hands of the deputy Mayor.

She truly deserved this distinction!

Then a talk by Manfred Bunse, an expert on the locality, followed on the subject “How was the social and historical environment between the 13th and 19th Centuries in Germany or rather in the vicinity of Warburg?” Here it was vividly described how our ancestors lived in the contemporary historical context. Once again it was made clear that compared to today the life of the time was partly hard and full of want and privation and should not always be described as the “good old days”.

After all the talks everybody had dinner together at 6 p.m. The finale of this first part of our family day was determined by conversations about internal family matters, getting to know Thonemanns living far away better, discovering common interests and establishing new family relationships. The music and parlour games made their contribution.

After a short night for many, the family day was continued on Sunday at 10 a.m. with a talk by our family member, Ralf Thonemann. His subject was How the family coat of arms came into being and the origins of the name“. The development and the significance of our family coat of arms (see section “Description of our coat of arms”) were outlined in detail using examples, as well as the origins of our name (see section Origins of our name). Ralf Thonemann, the designer of the coat of arms, encouraged the introduction of the coat of arms in the family as a sign of affiliation to the Thonemann family. In the discussion which followed with our family members the contents of the talk were correspondingly deepened.

Ralf Thonemann’s talk

Manfred Bunse who followed at 11 a.m. with his talk on “The foundation and development of Scherfede” was able to give those Thonemanns not living in Scherfede or the vicinity a good insight into our “Scherfede”, thus giving an excellent framework for our family get together.

During the family day DM 1,270 (650 EUR) was collected, which was supposed to serve as the starting capital for the foundation of a Thonemann family association. The family association was not founded that weekend.

The group lunch served as the conclusion of the Thonemann family day 1992, which was, unfortunately, characterised by people getting ready to go. The general opinion was that this weekend in the family circle signified a rare, pleasant and memorable piece of family history.

As the author heard, everybody returned home safely.

Ralf A. H. Thonemann

Newspaper clip with group photo from the “Warburger Zeitung” from 6th October 1992 – click on the image to see the English translation

Newspaper clip “Neue Westfälische”
from 5th October 1992
click on the image to see the English translation

Extract from the attendance list

No. Name Christian Name Location
01 Thonemann Ralf Düsseldorf
02 Thonemann Willi Scherfede
03 Thonemann Maria Scherfede
04 Möderle Gisela Munich
05 Thonemann Herbert Düsseldorf
06 Thonemann Hannelore Düsseldorf
07 Adamski Elisabeth Scherfede
08 Adamski Leo Scherfede
09 Thonemann Karl-Heinz Wuppertal
10 Thau Barbara Gevelsberg
11 Quast Gertrud Willebadessen
12 Thonemann Heiner Fehmarn
13 Thonemann Elke Fehmarn
14 Thonemann Alfons Detmold
15 Thonemann Ursula Detmold
16 Thonemann Tobias Detmold
17 Thonemann Meike Detmold
18 Margret Margret Münster
19 Thonemann Wilhelm Münster
20 Thonemann Albert Wuppertal
21 Thonemann Gertrud Wuppertal
22 Thonemann Rainer Ahrensburg
23 Thonemann Egon Hamburg
24 Moors Anni Scherfede
25 Thonemann Nico Düsseldorf
26 Thonemann Heinrich Düsseldorf
27 Thonemann Elisabeth Düsseldorf
28 Thonemann Klaus Mülheim
29 Thonemann Anni Mülheim
30 Thonemann Maria Warburg
31 Weißenborn Monika Berlin
32 Thonemann Hans-Günther Munich
33 Nienhaus Maria Saerbeck
34 Thonemann Marietheres Düsseldorf
35 Thonemann Johannes Scherfede (Poststraße)
36 Thonemann Johannes Scherfede (Trift)
37 Thonemann Martin Münster
38 Plaggenborg Maria Cloppenburg
39 Thonemann Bernd Cloppenburg
40 Thonemann Joh.-Wilhelm Ossendorf
41 Neugebauer Erika Ossendorf
42 Thonemann Elisabeth Cologne
43 Thonemann Ottilie Cologne
44 Schetter Rolande Cologne
45 Rau Anna Maria Paderborn
46 Thonemann Wilhelm Brakel

To our family day in 1951