Some Revelations About the Truth Concerning My Family and Our Nazi Connections

My sister just recently did a genetic testing called 23andMe, and some interesting things have come from the genealogy that came as a result of it.

First of all- there is not ONE OUNCE of Jewish blood in my family, other than my grandmother’s family married into the Jewish clan. In fact, not only are we not connected to the Jewish faith, but my grandmother Shurter’s family is laden with Nazi war criminals who were prosecuted after World War II. In other words, my family did their best to destroy the Jews, rather than being a part of them. All of our lives we have been lied too- and now that the truth has come out- it is understandable why that was the case.

My sister also discovered that our father was REALLY her father. The two of us have lived under a lie that our father had a vasectomy, and that we couldn’t possibly be our father’s children- (although our two half siblings that came after us never faced the same distinction), but my sister’s genetic test showed that this is yet one more lie we were told. She has since felt vindicated. Me, I am not really that concerned, as it is no great distinction to be my father’s son.

My mother was adopted, and so it is hard to find out anything about her and her family. Coming to the conclusion that she was part of the orphan train, one thing did come out in that we are primarily Irish. Irish and German. Of course, considering that our German heritage is connected with a bunch of Nazi’s, I won’t be boasting about that connection any time in the near future.

The other result of our genealogy is that we DO NOT originate from great wealth. My ancestors married into wealth, and much like our stepmother did, we simply coveted that wealth for ourselves. In fact, our ancestors were dirt poor and pretty much came from the wrong side of the tracks, so to speak. We simply ingratiated ourselves into others lives and stole their money and prestige. Liars and thieves basically make up the lot of my ancestors, as well as murderous Nazi’s. Completely contrary to what our Aunt Sandy claimed when she supposedly did our family’s genealogy.

I plan on having the genetic test done on myself as well. The male genome says much more than the female one does, and my sister is pushing me to have the test done so that we can learn more about our heritage. My father’s family can say what they want- but the science is pretty sound and the results are pretty conclusive, so I guess it is their word over science. However, I have been vaccinated with the results thus far. It certainly has cleared up many misconceptions I was raised with as a child. In fact, not surprisingly, it seems everything I was told about my ancestors is a lie. Told by people who are desperate to appear to be something other than what they are.

So the Shurter side of the family were liars, thieves, and Jew killers. Wow, that is something to be proud of. Not all of us were bad- but there are plenty of us that were. And all this was discovered simply by a genetic test. Genealogy certainly can clear up misconceptions, esp. when it is based on science. Of course it wasn’t necessary to tell me the despicable history of my ancestral past. Living with this lot of liars pretty much helps one conclude this, but it sure is nice to have science back up what I already suspected in the first place.

(This is primarily based on my Grandfather Shurter’s side, on the Rathbun side. This does not include the Higgen’s side, which our family, on the Rathbun side, married into- who were from Ireland and wealthy. On my Grandmother Shurter’s side- there were Fleishman and Kennys. However- our genetics show that we don’t have even one drop of Jewish blood in our heritage.)

Clarification by My Sister Kathy

Like usual I like to point out when I am wrong so I asked my sis to send me a note for clarification. This is her email…

Hi David!

I wanted to respond to several of the points that you made in your post today, and I also want to correct a few things.

I decided to have genetic testing done because one of my sons is really interested in genetics. He was researching his family tree, and there was not much that I could tell him. First of all, I was always told that I was not Dad’s biological child. Secondly, since Mom was adopted, I really wanted to find her family. So, off I went to get the info from When the information came back, I was truly surprised. I found out that I am indeed Dad’s child. Also, I found a first cousin on Mom’s side (though her family still largely remains a mystery because he was also given up for adoption).

With regards to Dad’s family, it was actually a very mixed bag. On the Rathbone side, there are Civil war heroes, abolitionists, and there are some outright despicable characters. I guess this is true in most people’s family trees. I was surprised to find out about the Higgins family since I really had only heard about the Rathbones in the past (Rathbun). I was also always told that our paternal grandmother had Jewish blood (Aschkenazi sp?) , but my genetics came back as 100% European (mostly Irish and English, but also French/German). However, Grandmother Shurter’s mother was from Saxony, Germany and her father was from Ireland. When my son was researching her background, he found that our great grandmother’s extended family was involved as war criminals in Germany. However, our great grandmother on Grandmother Shurter’s side came to the USA around the turn of the last century. She had no direct involvement in all of that (since she was in the USA), but much of the information differs greatly from all that I have learned from genetics testing and actual historical records. It’s interesting because if you go on, you can find actual photographs of some of these people (even the Higgins and Rathbun family). Thanks to the internet, there is an amazing amount of information available these days!

I have been mostly interested in Mom’s family because all of that information has never been available. That is why I did the test. Well, unfortunately, that information is extremely difficult to come by. We will probably have to have her adoption records unsealed (assuming that is possible). In the meantime, our cousin and I will have to keep on searching.

I have to tell you, though, it is gratifying to find out that I am Dad’s biological progeny. I endured years of being told that I was a result of Mother’s “whoring around.” Well, that is just not so. I would love to tell other members of the family (that were cruel enough to say such things to a child) to go pound sand! I think Dad would have been interested in this information, but since he is dead, that will never happen. I am truly sad about that…

Anyhow, my intention is to continue the research. There are 3 major genetic testing and ancestry sites, and I intend to join all of them (as finances permit). I am going to continue my research to find Mom’s family. I want information in place of that gaping hole that has been there ever since I found out Mom was adopted. Dad’s family history has been thoroughly researched, and other than making contact with second cousins (and even further out than that) is interesting, but I don’t find it necessary.

So, I hope this will provide you with some information. Gotta go now. I have a lot to accomplish today!

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