Falkenmire

The Falkenmires up and left their tiny village in Germany near the Dutch border. The reason why is a mystery, but it's possible the name was born on a boat.
Music: Sneaky Snooper by Audionautix. Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License

Transcript

FA LK EN M I R E Falkenmire.

How I spelt it to you just then was how I mostly say it when people ask me about it

FA LK EN… I always pause after the N

Because there’s an M afterwards that confuses people, and then I R E.

So my mum’s name was Hicks, and she married my dad. And my dad died when I was quite young, but we’ve kept that name. 

I was born in Lake Cargelligo, which is a little bit inland of Tamworth. My mum and my dad were both high school teachers. And my dad would row my mum across the lake to school, and they got married. 

There’s only one Falkenmire family in Australia. So it was always a bit of a mystery to our family, how the name came about. And it was quite a large family and they were all in Tamworth with and there was nine brothers and one sister. 

I actually was befriended on Instagram last week by a girl called Eliza Falkenmire and I have no idea who she is, but I know she’s a very close relative. So she lives over in Bondi. She swims. I haven’t worked out how she’s connected yet, but she will be. 

We didn’t really know the history of the family name. Until very recently, my cousin went back to Germany, which is where the name is from. It’s a tiny little village on the border of Germany and France and Holland. Apparently the whole family just left the village. Some went to America and this Falkenmire family came to Australia. My grandfather had eight brothers and one sister, and they all lived in Tamworth. 

My grandfather was quite German, but No, probably not. Not really. No, definitely not part of who I am now. I haven’t even been to Germany. They all left everybody. I’d love to know more about them. Yeah. 

So it’s a very small village. And my my cousin, who is a writer, went back there very recently, and did a bit of research because the name is not familiar in Germany or France. And people in Holland apparently recognise it. But the pronunciation doesn’t really seem to make sense. And he sort of discovered or his theory, upon investigation, was that Mire is a very common last name. So his theory really is that there was a Falken and it was a Mire, a lady and a man, and they actually combined the names on the boat over to Australia. 

I have to say later on after my dad died, and my mum remarried when I was in high school, the mixing of the two families…he had children and mum obviously had us, so we moved to a farm near Dungog. And I think things didn’t really work. But I think they thought maybe they combined our names that would work. But it didn’t. 

So we were Lowe for a little while, which was my stepfather’s last name. So for a year or two, I was Jemma Lowe. But it didn’t last very long. It was because my mum and my stepdad wanted the family to combine. But unfortunately, we didn’t really and so we went back to Falkenimre. Fairly quickly. 

Once the kids all left home, it was okay after that, and they’re still together now. It was a patch. I think. I actually thought at the time Well, this is going to be a lot easier because I had a lot of trouble in roll call with Falkenmire. So it didn’t bother me so much, but later on in life if that hadn’t happened to me now. I’ve got a very deep attachment to Falkenmire, because my dad died when I was young, so I feel quite Yeah, I’m very attached to it.