Note: This article was stolen from this site, lest it be lost. The site appears close to dying. Someone should reach out.
By Eunice B. Kirkman
William DeHart, b. 1550, France?, married (1) Elizabeth —-. William died unknown, Holland?.
DeHart Name – DeHart is a modified German name (Lauder) with a typically French prefix, the sort of name that would most likely occur in the northern (Flanders) region, though possibly Alsace, Lorraine, or Burgundy. The “DE” prefix suggests strongly the Flanders region. The prefix also indicated either nobility or royal recognition of some notable achievement or service to the crown. Using “De” meant establishment of notable house and family line, as with “Von” in Germany.
Research into the DeHart Family was instigated by Mrs. Robert M. Libke of Sparta, Wisconsin about 1971 and records secured through the CENTRAL BUREAU VOOR GENEALOGIE, Gravenhage, Holland, that verified the accuracy of the lineage. Prior to 1936, the Historian, Andrew J. DeHart, had traced the family through Virginia, South Carolina, back to New York and finally back to Holland. This is his account, and I quote, “The first of the generation according to that record was named Balthaser Giraratt, (sometimes called Gerard), which name was changed about the time of the reign of Phillip of Spain. The record is not plain why the name was changed. It is possible that it was because he was accused of murder of William of Orange. Later, a descendant of the family married a noble French lady. The same lady instigated the displeasure of the King by renouncing the Catholic faith to become a Protestant. An order was made by the King expelling her from France. Her husband took her to Holland. They were then mentioned by the name of d’Hardt. In Holland they settled at a place on the Zuyder Zee called Hardt, possibly named for William D’Hardt, one of the French DeHarts. Later, the Dutch way of writing the name was de Haardt. Another way was the Dutch words meaning DeHart were Veen Vos. After reaching America they seem to use these forms by translators from Dutch to English, viz: D’Hart, de Haardt, de Heart, de Hardte. The early Americans wrote it: deHart, deHarte, DeHart, and Hart. Now, it seems to be always DeHArt. It is almost proven that those who have lived here for more than 200 years were descendants of William, whose family was expelled from France and settled in Holland before coming here mostly with the New Amsterdam Dutch in 1656. The DeHarts who were the progenitors of so many prominent families were: Balthaser, Daniel, Mathias, and Jacobus deHardt”.