Saturday, January 23, 2010

Surname Saturday: PAPE

To the left is a coat of arms for my Pape family given to me by my third cousin Ulrike when I visited her and her family in 1982 in Buren, Westphalia, Germany. It's a copy by her brother Wolfgang of "an ancient painting by H. Pape, Hamburg, 1898 in Stuttgart."

My cousin translated the caption (which I also have in the original German) as follows:
This family has existed 4 centuries in Holland, Saxony, Rheinland, and Westphalia. It originally goes back to West-Friesland and was traced to Ameland at the beginning of the 15th century. The family branches spread also to Hamburg, Gotttingen and Schwerin after 1550. Coat of arms bearers were Peter Pape, 1580, businessman of Gottingen, and Willem Pape, 1612, copper engraver of Hamburg.
There are a lot of Papes here in Texas, especially in the central part of the state where many German immigrants settled, but I don't believe I am related to any of them. Apparently it's a fairly common name, or else many of the Papes actually had a longer surname in the old country that was shortened to this. Most of the ones I've met pronounce the name like "poppy," while we pronounce the name like "paper" without the R sound at the end (i.e Pape rhymes with tape, gape, ape, cape, nape).

My great-grandfather, John Pape, came to the United States in 1880, and settled in Evanston, Illinois (although his descendants are now all over the country). Ulrike is supposedly the great-granddaughter of one of his brothers, who stayed in the Buren area. A family business, the Gebr. Pape Druckerei (Pape Brothers Printing), is still there, run by Ulrike's youngest brother Eberhard. I'd like to learn more about the family roots in Germany.

© Amanda Pape - 2010

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for sharing the Pape Coat of Arms with us. Very nice ---and interesting bit of history.