Introduction of Tony’s Book “From Wendish Ancestors to Fifth Generation Australian”
In 1854 Tony S. great-great grandmother “Anna set out on a long journey from Europe to Australia. She had been widowed in 1841 and no doubt believed the “Great South Land” offered her two children, Mathias and Christiane, a better future than their own country where food, employment and land were in short supply.
Migration must always be a great uprooting, but in the era before rapid transportation and mass communication, when knowledge of the world was limited, it must have been a traumatic experience.
Anna and her children had probably never before seen the sea upon which they set out in a small sailing ship, an a four month journey.
It is worth contemplating that first night at sea, when having cleared the Elbe River at Hamburg, they had to run the gauntlet of Danish pirates from the Baltic before heading for Rio de Janiero, their only port of call an their way to Australia.
Australia's European settlers, who came "to subdue the land" in those early days were clearly an intrepid lot.
Hopefully their achievements will not be forgotten in succeeding eras when "rights" sometimes become more important to some, than responsibilities.
This account of activities of one part of the family stemming from those original migrants has, as Ann remarked in her Chapter, far outrun its original intention of just being a Family Tree. It had also been intended that it just be some sort of a record of the Sallmann contribution to real estate in Melbourne.
What has resulted from these original intentions is somewhat of a mish-mash. It would be presumptuous to refer to it as a Family History as it concentrates an Tony Sallmanns activities and what little is known of his direct forebears. It also just touches his heirs and successors and upon his sister Lois Abrahams. As Ann's forebears were known to those referred to here as fourth generation Sallmanns in Australia, they too have been included.
It is not an autobiography so hopefully the arrogance sometimes evident in autobiographies has been avoided. It was never intended to be Tony Sallmanns memoirs. It would be appropriate to view it only as a contribution to the record of affairs. It does not end - and doubtless sometime someone will add to it.
Earliest Sallmann Records
Most records of ordinary people in Europe were lost during the One Hundred Years War; and during the 19th century the only information readily available is in the parish records of the Churches.
A ‘Sallmann' appears in the Church records of Werben in Lower Lusatia shortly after 1800. This was Martin Sallmann who married Anna Lukas in the Lutheran church of St. John at Werben an the 27 December 1803. He had come to Werben from a nearby village, Altdoebern, just to the south, where he was probably born, in about 1764. Martin is also shown in the Napoleonic census of 1813 in which he is described as a "Hausmann" a servant in the house of a well off Serb (Wend) in Werben. Earlier church records described him as a tenant/farm worker an the baronial estate of ‘von Witzlehen.’
He and Anna had about 10 children, some of whom died whilst still young; and he lived in Werben until he died at the age of 77 in 1841.
One of his ten children, was Mathes, born in 1813; he married another Anna and during his short life of 28 years had two children Mathias (*1835) and Christiane (*1838). Mathes died in 1841; and fifteen years later in 1854, it was Mathes' widow and two children who migrated to Australia.