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This website is dedicated to my great grandparents Charles Kastler and Juliette Kleitz, and great-great grandparents Jakob Kastler and Katharine Rathgeber. It was because of them that I started my journey into genealogy. I discovered not only my German heritage, but also my German family.
The Swabian Kastlers come from an area of southern Germany known as Swabia (Schwaben), a historical region of southern Germany which included Alsace and eastern Switzerland. The oldest ancestor is Christian Kastler, born in Asselfingen, Baden Württemberg around 1410. He is believed to be the seed for all the Kastlers around Ulm.
The Austrian Kastlers come from Upper Austria, where they emerged in Lasberg, near Freistadt. The oldest member in this tree is Franz Kastler, born in 1788. We know these Kastlers have been in the area for a while since there was a marriage record of a Simon Kastler, a father at a wedding, in 1641 in Grünbach, just north of Linz. There are still Kastlers in Grünbach today.
The Königsbach (-Stein) Kastners are related to the Swabian Kastlers and the Westhoffen Kastlers. The oldest member of this family is Konrad Kastner, who died in approximately 1590. There is also a Conrad Kastler in the Westhoffen Kastler clan, who died in 1593. I believe these to be the same person. As mentioned, the Westhoffen Kastlers are related to the Königsbach Kastners and the Swabian Kastlers. It is theorized, according to DNA results, that one or more members of the Swabian Kastlers migrated west to Königsbach-Stein, then to Alsace (was Germany at that time) as the Westhoffen Kastlers.
The Wahlern Kastlers originated in Wahlern Switzerland as Kasteler. One or more left the Wahlern, Switzerland area for Belmont in Alsace. The oldest Kasteler in this family is Anthoni, born in 1565, Wahlern. The name spelling changed into Kastler because that’s probably how the church thought it sounded. Many of these Kastlers are in the United States today.
The oldest Marbach Kastler was Jean Kastler, born 1644 in Marbach. We don’t have any DNA tests for this family to see if they belong to the Wahlern Kastlers. These Kastlers also moved to Alsace. Ann Marie Kastler was the child of Jean, and she was the first to be born in Lautenbach Zell, Alsace.
It is theorized that the Saarland Kastlers (originally Kasteler) originally came from the town of Kastel. They seemed to stay in the area south-east of Trier, Saarland. As in the Wahlern Kastlers, at some point the church records changed the name spelling and wrote Kasteler as Kastler.
The Westhoffen Kastlers are believed to originally come from the Swabian Kastlers home near Ulm. The next town with Swabian Kastlers going west is Königsbach, and the Königsbach Kastners. We know that Conrad Kastler of the Westhoffen Kastlers died in 1593 and Konrad Kastner of the Königsbach Kastners died approximately 1590, so it was before Konrad Kastler’s death that one or more migrated to Königsbach-Stein from the Swabian Kastlers. They were winemakers in the beautiful rolling hills around Westhoffen.