Pumpa One Name Study

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Location: Kottbus, Brandenburg, Germanymap
Surname/tag: Pumpa
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How to Join

Please contact the project leader Tracy Hope or leave a comment at the foot of the page with any questions. To join the project, add your name at the bottom, thanks!

Family Origins

Today, the Pumpa name is found in Europe, North America, and Australasia. All of them resettled around the world from a starting point in the wider community of Kottbus, Brandenburg, Germany (or Prussia, before 1918.

However they didn't originate in the Kottbus area. Most residents of Kottbus were Sorbian, otherwise known as Wendish or Lusatian, and settled in their current Heimatort in the 6th century. They are considered Slavic and are connected (as the name makes clear) to Serbian culture and language, with origins in the Balkans. Today there is a strong Sorbian community and culture in Brandenburg, with around 25,000 people still speaking Upper Sorbian.

A Václav (aka Wenceslaus) Pumpa appears in the public record as an alderman in the Royal City of Pilsen, Bohemia, in the late 14th century. His wife is named Anna and he has a relative named Ludmila. His name is recorded as referring an annual donation of ten "Kop" per year to the Minorite Monastery.[1] In 1380, it seems, the council leader of Pilsen passed away and Wenceslaus Pumpa is recorded as "judex tunc temporic" or temporary council leader (reeve).[2]

It is possible that the Brandenburg Pumpas are descended from a branch of Václav Pumpa's line. Another Václav Pumpa was present in Prague, Czechoslovakia, in 1976 as an expert advisor for a film on coke production.[3]

Certainly in the 19th century, the Pumpas seem to have lived mostly in a circle formed by the towns of Peitz, Jänschwalde and Tauer, centred on the northern edge of the Peitzer Teiche[4], a large area of manmade ponds formed in the late 16th century and used for fishing.

The first Wends/Sorbs to migrate to Australia as a group were also the last of an exodus of Germans who left Prussia citing religious oppression, as King Frederick William III of Prussia forced a union between Confessional Lutherans and Reformists to create the Evangelical Church[5]. The first devout Lutheran Prussians emigrated to South Australia in 1839, writing and imploring their friends and families to join them in Australia and establishing German-style towns and Lutheran synods. The elder Pumpa men that followed this first Wendish migration were known for their Christian values and piousness in Australia.


This is a One Name Study to collect together in one place everything about one surname and the variants of that name. The hope is that other researchers like you will join our study to help make it a valuable reference point for people studying lines that cross or intersect.

Task List

  • Add {{One Name Study|name=Pumpa}} to all Pumpa profiles
    • Question for discussion: which names qualify as members of the one-name study when the line is maternal, i.e. the profile is no longer a Pumpa?
  • Connect unconnected Pumpas on Wikitree to the wider global tree
  • Gather anecdotal information for quality stories about the Pumpa family
  • Confirm with sources the following relationships:
    • Spouses of the various Martin Pumpas, Frederick/Friedrich Pumpas, and Johann/Hans/John Pumpas
    • Children and descendants of existing profiles
  • Create or use categories for easy viewing:
    • Pumpas by town of origin
      • Peitz
      • Tauer
      • Janschwalde
      • Drehnow
      • Turnow-Preilack
    • Pumpas by ship to South Australia
    • Pumpas by place of settlement in Australia
      • Eden Valley, South Australia[6]
      • Albury, New South Wales[7]
      • Murtoa, Victoria[8]
      • Hawker, South Australia[9]

Research pages

Useful Resources

  • Book Pumpa : Australian descendants, commemorating 150 years in Australia, 1856-2006, by Quentin Nuske, ISBN 0646454714 9780646454719

Further Reading

Project Members

  • Tracy Hope Project Coordinator: 2x great-granddaughter of Christian Pumpa who was one of the heads of the family that migrated to Australia aboard the Heinrich in 1856.


  1. Kutná, Eliška. Městská rada v Plzni do roku 1434 (City Council in Pilsen to 1434). 2017, Brno. https://is.muni.cz/th/ptycd/Plny_text_prace.pdf, accessed 11 April 2020.
  2. Votruba, Jiří. Z galerie otců Plzně (From the Gallery of the Fathers of Pilsen). 2011. E-book. https://knihy.abz.cz/prodej/z-galerie-otcu-plzne-1#a_popis, accessed 11 April 2020.
  3. Jančová, Veronika. Ve službách průmyslu: Český průmyslový film 50. až 70. let a jeho taxonomický systém. (In the service of industry: Czech industrial film of the 1950s and 1970s and its taxonomic system. 2016, Brno. https://is.muni.cz/th/pm2nb/MDP_Prumyslovy_film.txt, accessed 11 April 2020.
  4. https://tourismus.peitz.de/de/landschaft/die-peitzer-teiche
  5. https://web.archive.org/web/20070927053258/http://www.wlsessays.net/authors/W/WesterhausEmigrations/WesterhausEmigrations.pdf
  6. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eden_Valley,_South_Australia
  7. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Albury
  8. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Murtoa,_Victoria
  9. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hawker,_South_Australia

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