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Overview of the Zegel Family Origins

The Dutch word Zegel (Siegel in German) means a seal or stamp. In the Netherlands today, a Postzegel is a postage stamp. The Dutch pronunciation varies, either ZAY-ckul or ZAY-hole, depending upon dialect. Sometime between 1871 and 1874 a branch of the Zegel family immigrated to New York from Oudeschild on the Island of Texel. Texel (pronounced TESS-el) is the first of the string of the Frisian islands in the North Sea that spring from the city of Den Helder (on the tip of the province of North Holland) going across the entrance of the inland sea, the Ijsselmeer. (See Texel) Texel is a resort island with tourism as its main industry. Oudeschild (on the southeast side) was the main port and fishing village of the island. It was not a port until 1780, when a dike broke. The clever Dutch sensed that a port was more valuable to them than the polder had been. Den Burg, in the center of the island, is the principal city of Texel. Most of the family has moved from Oudeschild to Den Burg. The Dutch ancestors are buried in the Protestant half of the Oudeschild cemetery, which greets visitors with the sign we are waiting for you too. What we know of the origins of the Zegel family comes from a Dutch publication of the genealogies of Texel family names, the Encyclopedie van Texelse Familienamen (Texelse Geschlachten), from which most of the following is quoted:

The root of this family, Harmen Zegelken from the country of Hannover (probably the vicinity of Bremen) married in the Reformed Church in den Burg with Hendrikje Fran from De Waal, later Hogeberg, and probably took over the farm of his father-in-law. The diminuting “ken” or “ke” quickly fell from ending the original spelling of the family name. Middle names usually followed the Dutch practice of adding an “sz” to the father’s name. Harmen Zegel(ken) had two sons: Kassen (1777-1862) a workman and farmer, and Frans (1782-1873), a farmhand. These first names had remained in use in the family. Probably Jan Zegelken, from Bremen, a worker who also lived near the De Waddel polder near Hogeberg was a brother. This Jan married, as an older man, in 1800 with Aaltje Jans Helm (1779-1816). So Harmen and Jan would have to have been born between 1730 and 1740. In 1761 Jan instituted a suit against Mr. Frederick Rooseboom about an unpaid wages. He died in 1803 and in 1804 his widow married Frans Harmensz Zegel. Later there were sea captains, shippers, traders and manufacturers in the family. Most of the descendants of Jan Kassensz Zegel (born 1818) and Grietje Wichers Rooseboom moved to Velsen. A portion of this group carried the double-family name of Kasse Zegel. Some of the Zegels carried the name due to a clerical error by an official. Jannetje Kassens Zegel (born 1807) in 1826 bore a son, Melle Zegel, who was duly named after his natural father, Melle Philippusz Veen. Even after the marriage of Melle Veen and Jannetje Zegel he was not legally acknowledged by his father and continued to be named Zegel for the rest of his life.

(A special thanks to Stan Zegel for his "Origins Overview" and Dirk Zegel and Stan Zegel for the genealogy contributions.)

The information contained on these pages is accurate to the best of my ability. Please email with any corrections, changes, or additions you may have, or just touch base to say "Hi" because I would love to hear from you!

Thanks! Gary Allen Zegel
 News 
Kasse Zegels Mark 50 Years of Wedlock Oct.26 (1939)
15 June 2008 - 3:59:36pm

Many-Tiered Cake Dominates West Sayville Home of Couple Celebrating Golden Wedding

West Sayville, Oct.26 (1939) – A cake dominates the Kasse Zegel homestead here, a cake many-tiered, white and luscious, decked with curlicues of sugary icing and topped with a crown of significant golden roses.

The cake is a sign and a symbol: A symbol of 50 years of married life… a man and woman together, founding a home, founding a family, working together, sticking together, earning a living, helping to build a community. The cake is a symbol of five decades that have done for Kasse Zegel and Jocoba Van Vessem.

It is a reminder of a plain white cake baked in 1889 and set as a symbol of years untried before a boy of 19 and a girl of 17 on the day, to quote Mr. Zegel, they set out on the sea of matrimony.”

Mr. Zegel, who is known locally as Cap’n Kos, has followed the water all his life. He started making himself useful on an oyster boat, as a cull boy at the age of nine. When he married Jacoba Van Vessem in the parsonage of the Sayville Congregational Church on October 20, 1889, he was already an expert bayman with something of the reputation for handling a boat that belongs to him today.

The young couple set up housekeeping in West Sayville. They have made their home here ever since, and it was in West Sayville their nine children were born. Seven of them are living – five sons, Minard C., James E., Tonis M., William P., and Clarence A., and two daughters, Mrs. George DeGraff and Mrs. Wilma Gill.

Their son, Minard, and his wife will celebrate a 30th wedding anniversary this week.

“Yes,” Cap’n Kos affirmed, “we’ve lived in West Sayville practically all our lives… Cosha here,” he said nodding toward Mrs. Zegel, portly, dignified, her abundant iron –gray hair piled on her head in curls- “Cosha came from Holland when she was 14 months old. I was just a year and a half.”

Neither has revisited Holland, but both expressed a wish to see the land of dikes and tulips which so many of their townfolk once called home. The Zegels are Republicans and members of the Dutch Reformed Church. They have 23 grandchildren and three great grandchildren. Mrs. Zegel, the matriarch, who looks younger than her 67 years, has been present at the birth of them all.

WAS FISHERMAN
As a lad, Captain Zegel often traveled up the Hudson by boat as far as Albany, and for many years engaged in the business of deep sea fishing, going into the ocean as far as 60 miles from shore in the small boats the West Sayville fishermen use.

On one occasion, said Captain Zegel, when he was fishing with his son Bill, of Cherry Grove, Fire Island, they saw the moonlit-water alongside their boat suddenly blacken. The blackout proved to be a large whale that had come up for air out of the dark water. Said Captain Zegel; “I could have stepped off the boat onto its back.”

He learned to handle craft before the days of powerboats, and for years was one of the most sought after skippers in Long Island waters. He sailed interclass races for Langdon Thorne, Bill Picken, and others, and often over a course in competition with three of his sons who were at the helms of other boats.

Jacoba Zegel laughed indulgently at the memory of lively arguments her husband’s reference to the interclass races brought back to her. “Every one of those races was sailed and resailed over my kitchen table many a time,” she said, “and it took no starter’s gun to get them going.”

“Aw,” said Captain Zegel, “I was born with a tiller in my hand.”

In the Fall of 1915 he went to Florida in his 36-foot dory for a Winter’s fishing. It was necessary to go “outside,” and off Georgetown, S.C., a terrible storm started in from eastward,” but the small boat with Captain Zegel at the wheel made it safely into Georgetown harbor, and the Captain got to Florida to fish, to marvel at the growing grapefruit, and gather the collection of shells that adorn the homestead on Brook St. here.



TRIBUTE TO WIFE
Captain Zegel, smooth-cheeked and rosy has a lively sense of humor and a free flow of talk. He has a direct and rather bold twinkle in his eye that 11 months fighting diabetes in the Marine Hospital, Stapleton, Staten Island, did nothing to dim.

“If you are writing this for the paper,” he said, “put in there that Cosha’s the finest mother any child ever had and the finest cook any husband ever had.”

Mrs. Zegel protested, but her bridegroom of 50 years was firm.

“It’s what I’ve always said,” he declared stoutly. “Put it in. If there’s any one who doesn’t know it, I’d like ‘em to!”

The guest of honor was Mrs. Henry DeRonda of West Sayville, who as Miss Lena Beebe was Mrs. Zegel’s bridesmaid. The guests were Mr. And Mrs. Meindert C. Zegel of West Sayville and their sons Harold, Allen and Kenneth; Mr. And Mrs. Clarence A. Zegel of West Sayville, Mr. And Mrs. William P. Zegel of Manhattan, James Zegel of West Sayville, Mr. And Ms. George DeGraff of Sayville and their children, Charlotte, Mavis, June and Edward Hall; Mrs. Wilma Gill and her children, George and Francis Gill, of Brightwaters; Edward Zegel, Mr. And Mrs. Peter Van Vessen, Mr. And Mrs. Jacob Locker, Mr. And Mrs. John Locker and Mr. And Mrs. Walter Brown of West Sayville; Mr. And Mrs. Frank Gerard of Patchogue, Mr. And Mrs. Norman Benjamin of Bayport , Mr. And Mrs. I. K. Jensen of Sayville; Mr. And Mrs. Norman Price of Brightwaters, Mrs. Archie Steins of Bayport, Mrs. Edward Kowanda and Mrs. Alice Locker of West Sayville, Miss Rachel Terry and Miss Pat Powers of Sayville, Miss Dorthy Tracy of Bay Shore, Miss Elsie Boullinger of Brightwaters, Spencer Kennedy of Sayville, George Maher of Brightwaters, Theodore Bisso of Bayshore
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 Tonis Morris Zegel Pedigree Tree 
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 Top 10 Surnames 
SurnameIndividuals
1Zegel 231
2McCabe 99
3Smith 75
4McCarthy 61
5Morath 52
6Waters 47
7Nugent 37
8Spath 37
9Crahan 36
10Auten 34
  709
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 GEDCOM Statistics 
Zegel Family History
This GEDCOM was created using Family Tree Maker for Windows 7.00 on 17 November 2002
Individuals
Total surnames
Families
Media objects
Earliest Birth Year
Latest Birth Year
Earliest Death Year
Latest Death Year
Person who lived the longest
112
Average age at death
57
Average number of children per family
2.01

Most Common Surnames
Aten, Auten, Bannigan, Crahan, Hartnett, Kammerlohr, McCabe, McCarthy, Miller, Morath, Nugent, O'Sullivan, Smith, Spath, Steigerwald, Sullivan, Walkington, Waters, Zegel