Veulemans Family History: From Belgium to America
April 6, 2009
The purpose of this blog is to connect with all the Veulemans around the world who are related. If you’re a Veulemans, Veuleman, or Velman and can trace your roots to Zuurbemde, Belgium (East Flanders), then you are definitely family!
So far this blog has been very successful! I have traveled to Belgium and met some of my wonderful distant relations and was able to learn about some interesting stories. One of the “legends” that I’m pursuing involves the Mues family. My ggg grandfather Peter Veulemans’ mother’s surname was Mues.
There is a story that the Mues family originated in Navarra, Spain and were Sephardic Jews. In fact, there is even a tiny village in Navarra called Mues, and if you look at the LDS family search and enter the surname Mues and the location Spain, you will see over 100 de Mueses all from Navarra dating back from the 1500s to the 1800s. I saw nothing on them that substantiated them being Jewish, but they may have very well been willing or forced Catholic converts.
So how would the Spanish Mueses end up in Flanders? In the late 16th century, the Reformation began and Spain controlled Belgium by sending Spanish soldiers to the area. Many of the Protestants fled Belgium for safety reasons. The Spanish soldiers killed many of the local men. As a result, many of the soldiers stayed in that area and married or had relations with the local women.
Is this just a legend or could it be true? I met a Mues descendant who lives in Mexico City. She has never talked to or met any of my relations in Belgium. Her family history is that her Mues ancestors fled Flanders during the Reformation and went to Germany. I believe it was her grandfather who left Germany and settled in Mexico. Her family “legend” also matches mine. The Mues family came from Navarra, Spain!
Here is my Veulemans family history. I hope to find more on the female lines, particulary the Mues line and post it here. I hope this blog will fill in all those blanks that you may have about your family.
My great, great, great grandfather Dr. Peter Constantine Veulemans was born in Belgium in 1797 and died November 14, 1863 in Buchanan County, Halls, Missouri. He is buried at Kerlin Cemetery along side his wife, my great, great, great grandmother, Kessiah H. (Wadkins) Veulemans. Kessiah was born about 1816 and died May 4, 1882.
Why Peter left the priesthood is a mystery for now. Maybe it was because of his adventurous nature. Peter, who was fluent in several languages, tried to coax his wife, Kessiah, into moving to South America. Although she refused the offer, it did not stop him from seeking adventure closer to home. During the gold rush era, Peter traveled to California and amassed a small fortune.
There was also a family legend that involved Peter being aboard a Spanish ship when some of the sailors contracted scurvy. Because of his medical training, Peter concocted a drink that saved the sailors. As his reward, the King of Spain gave him a land grant to what is now San Antonio, Texas.
That story proved to be true. When my family and I visited Halls, Missouri, we met his two great granddaughters. They lived in the original house built by Peter’s son Dallas Velman, which contained beautiful dining room furniture imported from Belgium and Peter’s silver chalice used for baptisms, etc.
They confirmed the story about the land grant, and although they possess the original document, we never saw it. Another family story is that Peter’s daughter, Kittie, once gave the grant to an attorney to look it over and had a difficult time getting it back from him. That might be the reason they declined to show it to us.
According to his great granddaughters, Peter cared little for material possessions, so he never made good on the grant. They said he suffered from an “itchy foot” and liked to travel a lot. Even though Peter was not home often, it is reported that he was good father and an “honorable and fair man”.
Very little is known about Kessia. Although the census says she was born in Missouri, the two great granddaughters said either she or her family came from Virginia. They also said that some of her descendants visited them from England. The name Wadkins/Watkins, however, is definitely Welsh.
Their son Henry was my great great grandfather. Henry’s wife was Elizabeth Singleton. Their daughter Sarah (Sally) Elizabeth Velman was my great grandmother.
My Veulemans family research has spanned approximately thirty years and is still a work in progress. Thanks to my sister Karen Duke for getting the original documents copied and translated and to distant relatives living in Belgium who provided additional information. Their efforts have helped tremendously in tracing the family line:
Peter’s first wife was Hannah Talbot. She died about a year after they were married. After Hannah’s death, he married class=”hiddenSpellError” pre=”married “>Kessiah Wadkins from Virginia (census states she was born in MO, but her family was from Virginia) who was of English ancestryThe children of Peter and Kessiah changed their surname to Velman. The Tipton, Missouri branch uses the original Veulemans while the Louisiana branch uses Veuleman.Peter was a Jesuit Priest and a trained surgeon who brought the famous Belgian missionary Peter De Smet toAmerica ).
The following information came from St. Catherine’s Catholic Church in Zuurbemde, Belgium.
The family roots go back to the 16th century Belgium:
1. Veulemans Christianus x Cremers Margarita
2. Veulemans Christianus ° 12/8/1615 Kapellen
2. Veulemans Georgius ° 27/3/1618 Kapellen
2. Veulemans Petrus ° 28/1/1621 Kapellen
2. Veulemans Maria ° 13/2/1625 Kapellen
2. Veulemans Joannes ° 14/4/1636 Kapellen + 27/4/1733 Zuurbemde
x 1678 Bogaers Catharina ° 12/11/1661 Tielt St.Martinus + 5/2/1736 Zuurbemde
3. Veulemans Catharina ° 28/10/1679 Glabbeek + 14/11/1720 Miskom
3. Veulemans Margareta ° 27/4/1681 Glabbeek + 25/1/1729 Zuurbemde
3. Veulemans Joannes ° 18/3/1683 Glabbeek + 24/6/1735 Zuurbemde
x Kestiaens Maria ° + 23/11/1748 Zuurbemde
4. Veulemans Joannes 9/12/1711 Zuurbemde + 22/10/1793 Zuurbemde
x 7/3/1751 Zuurbemde with Coffers Anna Catharina ° 5/5/1716 Geetbets + 24/10/1769 Zuurbemde
5.Veulemans Anna Maria ° 26/8/1752 Zuurbemde
5. Veulemans Helena ° 28/6/1754 Zuurbemde
5. Veulemans Joannes Franciscus ° 25/11/1756 Zuurbemde
5. Veulemans Joannes Josephus ° 13/3/1759 Zuurbemde
5. Veulemans Theresia Maria Agnes ° 24/10/1761 Zuurbemde
5. Veulemans Joannes ° 1764 Zuurbemde + 5/3/1814 Zuurbemde
x 4/10/1791 at Zuurbemde Zuurbemde “>Mues Anna Elisabeth ° 17/5/1770 Zuurbemde + 5/3/1814 Zuurbemde
6. Veulemans Joannes Chrisostomus ° 24/8/1792 Zuurbemde
6. Veulemans Dominicus ° 30/9/1794 Zuurbemde
6. Veulemans Petrus ° 7/2/1797 Zuurbemde + 14/11/1863 Halls MO emigrated 1821
6. Veulemans Maria Elisabeth ° 26/3/1799 Zuurbemde
6. Veulemans Maria Theresia ° 12/12/1804 Zuurbemde
6. Veulemans Joannes Chrisostomus ° 22/7/1807 Zuurbemde
6. Veulemans Maria Philipine ° 24/5/1810 Zuurbemde
4. Veulemans Guilielmus ° 10/8/1715 Zuurbemde + 1722
4. Veulemans Henricus ° 3/8/1719 Zuurbemde + 9/3/1797 Zuurbemde
4. Veulemans Guilielmus ° 22/2/1723 Zuurbemde
4. Veulemans Petrus ° 23/2/1728 Zuurbemde
x 24/8/1749 in Zuurbemde with Nijns Maria Catharina
5. Veulemans Maria Elisabeth ° 17/2/1754 Zuurbemde
5. Veulemans Joannes ° 5/10/1756 Zuurbemde
5. Veulemans Joannes Baptista ° 21/8/1758 Zuurbemde + 17/3/1805 Glabbeek
x 26/5/1782 Glabbeek with De Geest Maria Catharina ° 1757 Glabbeek + 8/11/1820 Zuurbemde
6. Veulemans Joannes Baptista ° 17/4/1783 Zuurbemde emigrated 1835
x Boeckx Maria ° + 29/6/1815 Glabbeek
7. Veulemans Maria Theresia ° 13/1/1813 Glabbeek
7. Veulemans Petrus Norbertus ° 28/6/1815 Glabbeek + 2/10/1881 Tienen
came in 1835 to Louisiana, returned later back to Belgium
xx 9/5/1817 Glabbeek with Mues Anna Joanna emigrated 1835
7. Veulemans Josephina ° 5/6/1817 Glabbeek emigrated 1835
7. Veulemans Antonia ° 5/11/1818 Glabbeek emigrated 1835
7. Veulemans Joannes Chrisostomus ° 21/5/1820 emigrated 1835
7. Veulemans Joannes Josephus ° 8/7/1822 Glabbeek + 21/10/1893 LA (USA) emigrated 1835
x O’Conn Mary Nieves
xx Dillard Sarah Ann
7. Veulemans Cecilia ° 20/3/1824 Glabbeek emigrated 1835
7. Veulemans Theresia ° 25/2/1826 Glabbeek + 29/1/1930 Glabbeek
7. Veulemans Maria Elisabeth ° 17/4/1827 Glabbeek emigrated 1835
7. Veulemans Thecla ° 17/8/1832 Glabbeek emigrated 1835
6. Veulemans Jacobus Fredericus ° 10/2/1786 Zuurbemde
6. Veulemans Maria Carolina ° 19/1/1790 Zuurbemde
6. Veulemans Anna Philippina ° 9/2/1793 Glabbeek
6. Veulemans Joannes Josephus ° 14/11/1795 Glabbeek
6. Veulemans Joanna Maria ° 9/5/1799 Glabbeek + 9/10/1811 Glabbeek
6. Veulemans Catharina Elisabeth ° 16/7/1804 Glabbeek + 2/4/1818 Zuurbemde
5. Veulemans Gaspar ° 13/4/1761 Zuurbemde + 13/4/1761 Zuurbemde
4. Veulemans Martinus ° 27/8/1733 Zuurbemde + 27/8/1733 Zuurbemde
3. Veulemans Augustinus °25/8/1685 Glabbeek
3. Veulemans Elisabeth ° 16/4/1687 Glabbeek
3. Veulemans Guilielmus ° 13/1/1690 Glabbeek
3. Veulemans Anna ° 1/1/1692 Glabbeek + 10/2/1779 Attenrode
3. Veulemans Petrus ° 8/12/1695 Glabbeek
3. Veulemans Gertrudis ° 8/5/1698 Zuurbemde
3. Veulemans Henricus ° 25/2/1701 Glabbeek + 31/5/1780 Zuurbemde
Descendants of the nephew of Peter, John Baptist all settled in Louisiana.
The Veulemans settled first in Louisiana but moved later to Tipton, Missouri is traced to Adrianus Veulemans born around 1700.
UPDATE: My family went to Belgium on July 18-31, 2009. We visited the Glabbeek area and St. Catherine’s Church. It was AMAZING! I met my a Mues from our maternal side. Anna Elisabeth Mues was the mother of my ggg grandfather. Here are some photos from the inside of St. Catherine’s. Even the Priest’s brother is married to a Veulemans. It was very exciting to be inside a church that my family has attended for over 400 years, and still attend today.
- The same tomb
Copyright Denise Kruta 2010