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Automatisch gegenereerde beschrijvingAfbeelding met gras, buiten, veld, staand

Automatisch gegenereerde beschrijving

G e n e a l o g y


The Roskott story


The family is now traced back to the beginning of the 18th century in Gildeshaus, a small German town just across the Dutch border today but in those days part of the French empire The main occupation of the Roskott-men was vicar and thus also JWE Roskott from which we only know because he is mentioned in the Gildeshaus marriage register related to the marriage of this his daughter Henriette Anne Margarethe in 1768, was described as a reformed vicar emeritus. JWE had two daughters and two sons who both followed their father and became vicar as well. One son, Eberhard Wilhelm, worked most of his life in a small reformed church in Gross Wolde (north-west Germany, near the border with the Dutch province of Groningen). His church is still there today and totally renovated, I visited the place in 1997 (The picture gallery shows a drawing as well as a photo of the church).


Eberhard Wilhelm had two daughters and one son, August Ernst, who decided not to follow the family tradition and became a watchmaker (since we are talking late 1700’s or so, being a watch maker could certainly be considered as a career in the ‘advanced technology sector’ of that time). His son, Bernard Nicolaas Johan Roskott, devoted himself to the church again and is one of the most remarkable family members so far. As a missionary he went to Indonesia, then a Dutch colony, to run a teacher school in Ambon. Numerous publications were made regarding his efforts and achievements and apart from a church also a street was named after him.  His grave in Ambon is still maintained by relatives today.  BNJ had many children and after his first wife Sara Twijsel died, he married again with Johanna Luijke which was the start of the Luijke Roskott branch of which I got an update from the UK quite recently.


From BNJ onwards there are many names from the king Arthur saga. The story goes that Sara Twijsel read Ivanhoe, a book written around 1830 by Walter Scott during her pregnancy she would not survive. She was so impressed by the story she named her son, my great-grandfather, Arthur Edmund Ivanhoe.


Around the second world war when the Dutch government lost her grip on the Indonesia-colony she ruled for many centuries, most of the Roskott’s wandered to other continents, to Europe but also to North America.


The ultimate origin of the Roskott-family is still to be revealed. The most striking anecdote is from the late Eleonor Constanie who shared her memories with me in the 1980’s. Her grand father used to tell her stories at the fireplace when she was a child. One of them went that one of her Roskott-predecessors was a nobleman from Poland who killed his opponent during a duel in the 18th century. Since dueling was strictly forbidden at that time, the nobleman had to flee and went to what is now called Germany. His name was Roskoff and in order to do a better job integrating and looking more German, he changed his name in 'Roskott'.


Other stories mention the existence of a Roskott-castle and a family weapon but no further details are known so far.