Friday, September 23, 2011

By Any Other Name: The Sartorius/Shrider Connection

Recently, while searching on Ancestry.com for clues to the origins of my ancestor Valentine Sartorius, I was surprised to see the surname Shrider and its variants among the search results (all the more intriguing since Shrider, like Sartorius, is part of the history of Guysborough County, Nova Scotia).

Valentine "Walter" Sartorius arrives in the United States in 1777 (according to "Hessian Troops in the American War for Independence: An Index According to Surname"). He serves as a private with the 60th Regiment - Royal Americans during the American Revolution and settles in Nova Scotia after the war. By October 1783, at which point he is in Halifax, Nova Scotia, awaiting his land grant, he is married to Elizabeth, daughter of Ludovic Jacob Brusch (also of the 60th Regiment), and has an unnamed daughter (see Sgt. Johann Henrich Reuter, Loyalist). Valentin dies about 1791, prior to the birth of his youngest child.

Brass button from a 60th Regiment uniform
The Shrider name in Guysborough County begins with George Shrider (alternatively spelled Schrader), whose origins are even more mysterious than Valentin's. According to the census records of his children, George is born either in Nova Scotia or the United States (two to one odds on the former). He dies 6 January 1866, age 77, in Halifax.

Further research reveals that Sartorius is the Latin form of Schneider (meaning "taylor") and its variants, including Shrider.

The names are connected, but are these two particular families? Or is it merely coincidence that they reside in the same area?

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