Further research


Study of the New South Wales land records would possibly reveal more about the Jerry's Plains, Belford and Lochinvar landholdings of the Dreis family.

Photographs and other documentary records of the family in Australia have yet to be collected. There is also a remarkable shortage of anecdotal material about the Dreises.

As noted below, Barbara Ames has conducted exhaustive research into the parish registers of Lorchhausen. She has taken the genealogical line back as far as it can go. However careful study of collateral lines may reveal the relationship between Andreas and the other villagers who moved to Australia. Researchers in Australia may be able tell us more about these people too.

Another aspect of German research would be a review of local government materials in the Hessisches Hauptstaatsarchiv in Wiesbaden, including the poll-tax rolls from around 1700 and the various emigration files listed in Struck's footnotes.

I am not aware of any German researcher studying the Lorchhausen Dreis family: perhaps one of the present-day Dreises in the village could indicate if such a study has begun.


The vital details from Germany are to be found in the parish register of Lorchhausen, the original of which can be inspected at the Catholic Diocesan Archives in Limburg-an-der-Lahn. The story of emigration from Nassau is comprehensively told in Wolf-Heino's Struck's Die Auswanderung aus dem Herzogtum Nassau (1806-1866) (Wiesbaden, Franz Steiner, 1966, No. 4 in the series Geschichtliche Landeskunde) which includes a full list of the emigrants between 1849 and 1868, including Andreas and the other men. Friedrich Jerchow's article Emigration from Germany (in Hamburg Porträt number 19, Hamburg as Emigration City (Hamburg, Museum für Hamburgische Geschichte, 1984) provides a brief account of the subject in English. Information on wine and the poor harvest of 1740 and later can be found in Friedrich von Bassemann-Jordan's Geschichte des Weinbaus (2nd edn, Frankfurt, Frankfurter Verlagsgesellschaft, 1923). The church history of the area is told in J. Zaun's Beiträge zur Geschichte des Landcapitels Rheingau (Wiesbaden, Molzberger, 1879, repr. Walluf, Sändig, 1973), while the political events mentioned above are related in Paul Richter's Der Rheingau (Wiesbaden, Sicker, 1913, reprinted Niederwalluf, Sändig, 1971) and in Herzogtum Nassau 1806-1866 (Wiesbaden, Historische Kommission für Nassau, 1981). The only known article on the name Dreis is that by Manfred Dreiß which appeared in Hessische Familienkunde, vol.18 (1986/87): Die von Dreisen/Dray/Tra in Worms, Rhein- und Südhessen durch 700 Jahre (1286-1986).


This brief article could not have been written without the painstaking research carried out by Barbara Ames of Sydney. In years of research, she has constructed a detailed family tree covering more than nine generations and has generously shared the fruits of her research. Further thanks go to Anne Buffier and Margaret Edgley, who pieced together the story of the Buffier-Dreis connection. My grandmother, Fanny Kelly, confronted me more than 20 years ago, with the mystery of her mother who was called Dries, but brought up by people called Justin. When I said I did not understand, she said she did not understand it either. Later, we were led astray by the statement on Hannah Buffier's death certificate that her father had been Henry Drice! But Anne overcame this obstacle.

—Jean-Baptiste PIGGIN

March 1992

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