The Kemle Name

The first thing you should know is Kemle is not the original spelling of the family name. Prior to emigrating to Yugoslavia in 1828 the name was spelled Kiemle. Before Kiemle we were Kiemlin, Kiemlen, Küemblin, Küemlein, etc., but this is taking things back a ways.

Why did the spelling of family names change?

Family names changed primarily because most people couldn't read, write, or spell. Names were provided for births, deaths, marriages, and other legal matters verbaly. This information was transcribed into the documents we have today based on the pronunciation.


Today there are many ways people pronounce Kemle, and there is no right or wrong way. Our ancestors likely used the German pronunciation of Kiemle, which would be Keem-la. Even the other endings we see like -lin, -len, lien would have been pronounced the same as the -le ending.

Where are we from?

The short answer to this question is the family originates from Germany, but this leaves out a great deal of the story. If your last name is KEMLE then your ancestors migrated to Mramorak from Kleinsachsenheim, Germany on May 18, 1828. This is because the name KIEMLE was changed to KEMLE, without the "i", when they got their passport to leave Germany for Mramorak, Yugoslavia. Mramorak, Yugoslavia is present day Serbia.

Why did Kiemle's leave Germany?

The answer to this question is explained in Susie (Kemle) Erdmann's Autobiography. As quoted from her story:

"Most of the early settlers were very poor. Most of them were peasants who had farmed the lands of their feudal Lords of Germany and who had been subjected to heavy taxation that nobody could afford to pay. The Hapsburg monarchs of Austria had enticed the German people to immigrate to the unsettled swampy land of Hungary, which had been devastated by the Turks for over 150 years. The Hapsburg Emperors of Austria encouraged and helped these poor German people come through Vienna to settle in the Banat. They came down the blue Danube River. The land was free and tax exemption for ten years was available. The so-called blue Danube basin was mostly swamp. The German people who migrated were called Danube Swabian (the name was given to them because they came down the Danube River and many of them came from Swabia). They constructed dams, ditches and canals and turned the swampland into beautiful fertile land that grew wonderful crops of wheat, corn, potatoes, sugar beets, sunflowers and all kinds of fruit, nuts and grapes. It was very difficult for them to begin this new life, but they had their freedom and this enticed more people to come."

Why did Kemle's leave Mramorak?

As the population continued to grow, lack of available land led to wide-scale emigration, primarily to the United States and Canada, but also to other countries. The early Kemles who came to the USA mostly emegrated to Mansfield, Ohio. Between 1899 and 1911, over 197,000 Germans left Hungary. Other factors contributed to emigration from Hungary. In America, industry was expanding rapidly, and steamship lines and manufacturers sent agents to the villages to recruit factory workers. Compulsory military service also caused some young men to leave Hungary. Under Parliamentary law, military service began when a man reached the age of 21. After three years of active service, men were transferred to the "Reserve," where they could be recalled until the age of 43. Still others were tired of the heavy taxation which resulted in poverty and inequality for the peasant class. Those who stayed past the end of WWII had to suffer the torture, death camps & execution by the partisans.

Where do we live now?

Kemle World Map Kemle World Map Kemle World Map Kemle World Map