Site History


Sometime in the early 1990's,  after the annual Koops Reunion, John Koops sent to me a package about 3 inches thick containing all the information that he had on the Ramakers and the Koops. I put the information in my computer using the Reunion Computer Application. I also started corresponding with several Ramakers to see what I could find out about their family history. One of the individuals who responded was Dr. Alan Carey of Bloomburg Pa. Dr. Carey is married to Ruth Minnie Jeanette Ramaker.

Dr. Carey had researched the Ramakers who came to America from Holland. He sent a copy of his report to me. I made a separate file of Holland Ramakers and put the information in my computer. Dr. Carey also put me in touch with Jess C Ramaker who had worked with him on the Holland Ramakers. Between them the records went back to Hindrik Ter Horst Raemaker and Annaken Wolbers. Their birth dates are unknown but their first son; Derk Ramaker was born in 1609, so their birth dates have to be in the late 1500s.

According to Dr. Carey, the Ramakers who were the progenitors of the Ramakers in America lived in the municipalities of Dinxperlo and Gendringen. These municipalities had a common boundary. Each also lay on the Netherlands German border. They are South-Southeast of Arnheim about 40 kilometers.

During the period of research, Dr. Carey became aware of several families of Ramakers who lived in Iowa, but they were unresponsive to his telephone calls and letters. One of them questioned that they were related since their family had come from Germany rather than Holland. Later, one of the "Dear Cousin" letters to a Ramaker in Denver elicited a response that suggested that the German Origin was the town of Bentheim. Bentheim is about 50 miles from the Holland hamlets of De Heurne and Voorst, from which the Dutch Ramakers emigrated to America.

Initial efforts did not find a connection between the Holland Ramakers and the German Ramakers. However, new information was investigated that indicates a high probability of a relationship. Following is the result of the investigation:

It must be recognized that in the early days many people could not read nor write and records of births, marriages and deaths were recorded in church records by a clerk. The clerk would spell the name the way he heard it. Also, the clerk's handwriting was not always clear and was hard to read. Consequently we have Rademakers, Raemakers, and Ramakers.

In comparing a descendant chart in Wilma Vande Berg's book with pages 1-8 of Dr. Carey's book and with Jess Ramaker's Chart, I find the following reasonable matches:

Wilma Vande Berg's Book

Berent Rademaker
m. Hendricken Huijs

One Child of the above marriage.

Dr. Carey"s Book

Berent Ramaker
m. Henrixhen Huyste 14 May 1690

One Child of the above marriage.

Wilma Vande Berg's Book

Jan Ramaker
c. 18 Aug 1695 Dinxperlo
m. Grietjen De Voshoorn
3 Aug 1720 Dinxperlo

One child of the above marriage:

Berend Radmaker
c. 23 Apr 1730 Dinxperlo
d. 29 Jul 1805 Dinxperlo
m. Geesken Ten Broeke
19 Sep 1773 Dinxperlo
b. 21 Jan 1748 Dinxperlo
d. 15 Jun 1831 Dinxperlo

Jess Ramaker's Chart

Jan Te Raemaker
b. 1695 d. 1762
m. Te Vosheurne

One child of the above marriage.

Berend Ramaker
b. 1730

I think the above similarities over three generations are too great to be coincidental and the people on the left are in fact the same people listed on the right..

Some of my contacts besides John Koops and Bertha Ramaker are Sylvia Ramaker, Irene Koeteeuw Ingraham, Betty Nyhoff, Gilbert Deters and Julian Deters.

The information that I had received from John Koops and Betty Nyhoff indicated the Steven Ramaker, the father of Herman Ramaker was the son of a Mr. And Mrs. Dirk; and, when Mr. Dirk died, Mrs. Dirk married a Ramaker and Steven's name was changed from Steven Dirk to Steven Ramaker, Also, it was believed that Mr. Ramaker had children by a previous marriage. Since he already had a son named Steven, they decided to call his natural son "Big" Steven and his step son "Little" Steven.

I could not find anything on a Mr. and Mrs. Dirk and I didn't know how to do research in Germany; so, I contracted with the Genealogical Associates, Inc. in Salt Lake City, Utah to do a research on "Little" Steven Ramaker. In January 1999, I received their report. All of the information on "Little" Steven's parents was false.

The Genealogical Associates report stated that on 4 May 1853, Hindrik Jan Ramaker married Zwenne Koel, and they had three sons. One of the sons was born Steven Rademaker, but he was later called "Little" Steven Ramaker. "Little" Steven Ramaker married Geeze (Grace) Küpers in 1893 in Downs Kansas.

Zwenne Koel died 25 May 1857 and Hindrik Jan Ramaker married Fenne Lefers 14 August 1860. They had nine children. One of the sons was named Steven Ramaker, so he was called "Big" Steven Ramaker. "Little" Steven is actually 5 years older than his half brother Big Steven. Little Steven settled in Downs Kansas and Big Steven settled in Sioux Center, Iowa.

Let's go back to the first known ancestors of the Ramakers.

My research now goes back to Arendt Krul born about 1630 in Wold Germany. He died 16 Oct 1690 in Wold. His wife is unknown but he had a son named Lucas Krul born about 1652 and died 23 May 1722 in Wold. His wife was named Fenne (last name unknown) born about 1652 and died 7 Mar 1716. Lucas and Fenne had three children Hindrik Krul born 22 Mar 1682, Steven and Jenne.

Hindrik Krul had three children, Lucas Krul, born 28 Nov 1782, Fennegien and Geertien. We are interested in Lucas.

Lucas had two wives but we are only interested his first wife Hille Bakker. Lucas and Hillie had three children. The one we are interested in is Hindrik Krul born 24 Aug 1744 that married Telle Veelts on 18 April 1781,

Hindrik Krul and Telle Veelts had three children Hindrik Krul born 30 March 1785, Lucas born 1 July 1782,  and Telle Krul born in 1788. Our interest is in Hindrik.

Hindrik Krul had three wives. His first wife was Geeze Ramaker. In Germany when a family has a daughter and no sons, the daughter's husband must take the daughter's surname in order to inherit the family estate. Therefore, Hindrik Krul changed his name to Hindrik Ramaker. Hindrik Krul Ramaker and Geeze Ramaker had a son and what do you suppose they named him --- Of course - Hindrik. Hindrik was born 11 Nov 1818 and died 10 October 1849. He married Zwenne Koel 19 Jul 1846.

Hindrik Krul Ramaker's second wife was Hille Venneklaas. They had a daughter Telle who married Jan Arends. They are the great grandparents of Albertine Kamps who married my friend Gerrit Schippers in Germany.

Hindrik Krul Ramaker's third wife was Zweene Kamps born 25 Apr 1803. They were married 11 Dec 1832 in Veldhausen, Germany. Hindrik and Zwenne had two sons and a daughter. The first son was Hendrik (Hindrik) Jan Ramaker born 12 Jan 1834 in Alte Piccardie, Germany. Hindrik Jan married Zwenne Koel 4 May 1853 when he was just 19 years old and she was 35. This is the same Zwenne Koel who married Hindrik Jan's half-brother in 1846.

Hindrik Jan Ramaker and Zwenne Koel's first son Geert was born 11 October 1853 (must have been about 4 months premature).

The second son was "Little" Steven born 1 Sep 1855.

The third son was Harm born 30 Dec 1856

Zweene Koel died 23 May 1857----So Hindrik Jan Ramaker who married at the young age of 19 was left with 3 young sons to care for.

So, on 14 March 1860 he married Fenne Lefers who was born 26 August 1831 and was only two years older than Hindrik Jan.

Big Steven was born 12 Sep 1860 (It looks like he was also a bit premature)

It is interesting to note that Zweene Koel married two men named Hindrik Ramaker.

In February 1999 my wife and I went to Downs, Kansas for her mother's (Bertha Ramaker) 90th birthday and I asked Gilbert Deters if he could give me some information on his family. Since he had married Bertha's sister Jeanette Koops I wanted to get their family in my computer file.

Gilbert gave me a descendant chart and a letter that Julian (Gilbert's brother) had received in January 1999 from a Frank Laurens Klein-Deters in the Netherlands. Frank wanted to know if Julian was related to Jake Deters. The answer is yes, so I asked for a copy of the letter and I wrote to Frank Laurens. I told him of my interest in genealogy in the Netherlands and in Germany and we have been exchanging information ever since. Frank also put me in touch with Gerrit Schippers in Germany. Gerrit has been very helpful and he sent to me a copy of his data file. He also uses the Reunion Program. Gerrit verified a lot of the Ramaker information and between Frank and Gerrit, I have made contact with Swenna Harger in Holland Michigan, John Byker in Mount Vernon Washington, Martin Kleine Deters in New Zealand and Wilma Van de Berg in Sioux Center, Iowa.

We all correspond by E-Mail. I can send a question to Frank in the Netherlands or Gerrit in Germany and get an answer the same day. (Both Frank and Gerrit read and write English)

John Byker told me about a book written for the Sioux Center, Iowa Centennial and how to purchase a copy. The contact was Wilma Van de Berg who is a genealogy researcher and wrote many of the articles in the book. I understood that Big Steven Ramaker and his family were mentioned in the book, so I bought a copy. I started putting into my computer the names of individuals who were related to names already in the computer. I expected to add a few hundred names. I added more than 10,000 names.

I have also received from Wilma a copy of a book that she published on the Van de Bergs and their relatives. Many of the names are the same as those I got from the Sioux Center Book. I also received a descendant chart from Wilma that is very interesting.

As mentioned above, Wilma has a Berent Rademaker married to Hendricken Huijs. They had a son Jan Radmaker born 18 Aug 1695 In Dixenperlo who married Grietjen De Voshoorn. They had a son Berend Radmaker christened 23 Apr 1730 in Dixenperlo who married Geesken Ten Broeke. They had a daughter Hendrika Rademaker who was born 3 Jan 1779 and married Hendrik Wiliam Ter Beest.

I have concluded that. Barent Ramaker born 1730 is Berend Radmaker born 23 April 1730, d. 24 Jul 1805 Dnxp, m. 19 Sep 1773 Dnxp.

The results of my investigation into the Holland and German Ramakers has already been discussed above.


With the aid of Frank Laurens, it has been found that

Jan Henssen born abt 1700 in Wold Germany married Fenne Dobben. They had a daughter, Jenne Henseen who married Jan Klaassen. Their daughter Fenne shortened the last name to Klaas. She married Jan Kamps 31 Jan 1802 in Veldhausen.

Fenne Klaas and Jan Kamps had seven children. Two of their children were Zweene Kamps born 25 Apr 1803 in Veldgaar and Jenna Kamps born 21 Jan 1807 in Veldgaar.

Zweene Kamps married Hindrik Krul Ramaker. They are the great grandparents of Herman Ramaker.

Jenna Kamps married Jan Harm Kleine-Deters. They are the great grandparents of Gilbert and Julian Deters.

Jan Kamps and Fenne Klaas are the great-great-grandparents of Herman, Gilbert and Julian.

Gilbert Deters is not only the brother-in-law of Bertha Ramaker, Gilbert and Julian Deters and Herman Ramaker are cousins (3rd Cousins).


For many years, I have tried to learn more about my paternal great grandfather and paternal great grandmother. My father thought that his grandmother was 50% Cherokee, but he did not know her name. I obtained a copy of my grandfathers death certificate and found that her name was Emma, but the last name was not legible. It appeared to be Camp or Crump. In the 1880 U.S. Census, I found my paternal great-grandfather, Nathaniel E. Simmons was married to Margaret Emma Camp. Through the Camp Website in, I was able to find the names of Emma's parents were Pyramus B.Camp and Margery G. Hawkins.  She was born 9 May 1812 in North Carolina (Cherokee Country) and died 20 January 1876. Based upon recent information, I have found that her name was Hankins not Hawkins Pyramus and Margery had 12 children. My great-grandmother, Margaret Emma Camp, was the 9th child.

The recent information from Susan Hunter shows that I am a direct descendant of Major General Robert Howe, who served George Washington in the revolutionary war. (Look under Thomas Grange in the Family Registers)