Trump family

This article is about the ancestrial history of the Trump family as a whole. For the immediate family of Donald Trump, see Family of Donald Trump.
Earlier spellings Drumpf, Drumpft
Place of origin Kallstadt, Germany
Connected families Heinz, Christ, Knauss, Kushner, Yunaska
Name origin and meaning A German word for drum

The Trump family (German [ˈtʁʊmp]; Palatine German [ˈdrʊmp];[1] American English /ˈtrʌmp/) is a German and German-American family, descended from Johann Philipp Trump, a native of the village of Kallstadt, now in Rhineland-Palatinate, Germany.

Several family members moved to the United States in the 19th century, among them Johann Heinrich Heinz, a son of Charlotte Louisa Trump, who became the father of Henry J. Heinz, the founder of the Heinz company. A prominent branch of the family is the family of Donald Trump, descended from Friedrich (Frederick) Trump (1869–1918) and Elisabeth Trump née Christ (1880–1966), both natives of Kallstadt. The Trump family have been prominent in the fields of real estate, entertainment, business, and politics. Its most famous member is American President-elect Donald Trump, designated to enter office on 20 January 2017. Other prominent family members are the real estate developer Fred Trump, the noted physicist and inventor John G. Trump and the federal judge Maryanne Trump Barry.

The surname Trump is found throughout Germany. It is recorded as the name of this family in Kallstadt since the 17th century. Many family members were winegrowers and distinguished members of the local community there. Family members also still live in the family's ancestral region in southwestern Germany.[2]


Kallstadt, in Germany, the Trump's family ancestral home.
Further information: Trump (surname)

Trump is a German surname derived from a word for "drum".[3] The name is on record in Kallstadt from the 17th century, and has been spelled in many different ways, including Drumpf, Drumpff, Drumpft, Drumb, Tromb, Tromp, Trum, Trumpff, Dromb and Trump.[4] In the Palatine dialect of the area the name Trump is, regardless of spelling, pronounced [ˈdrʊmpʰ] ("droomp").[1]

The family originates in Kallstadt in modern Rhineland-Palatinate, Germany. The first known person by the surname in Kallstadt, a lawyer called Hanns Drumpf, settled there in 1608.

Johan Philip Trump had established himself as a winegrower in Kallstadt by the late 17th century. Many of his descendants also were winegrowers and distinguished members of the local community of Kallstadt.[5] Kallstadt is a acknowledged tourist destination and famous for being a Edelweinort, a place of noble wines and the related gastronomy.[6] The organ builder Johann Michael Hartung (1708 - 1763) and his son Johann Philipp Hartung lived as well in Kallstadt. Elizabeth Christ Trump was related to the Hartung. Charlotte Louisa Trump (1789–1833) married Johann Georg Heinz, and their son Johann Heinrich (John Henry) Heinz (1811–1891) emigrated from Kallstadt to the United States in 1840 and was the father of Henry J. Heinz (1844–1919), the founder of the Heinz company.

Stories about famous emigrants are stock items in the region, where a large portion of the inhabitants have remote relations to them.[7] In 2015, filmmaker Simone Wendel, herself from Kallstadt (and remotely related to Trump) produced a documentary called Kings of Kallstadt.[8][9] The film deals with the ongoing relationship between the local inhabitants and their prominent relatives, both the Heinz and Trump business families in the USA. Wendel interviewed Trump in New York and showed a Kallstadt delegation at the Steuben Day parade. Trump prolonged the interview over the preset time and promised to visit Kallstadt.[9]

Friedrich Trump's American family branch

In 1885 Friedrich Trump emigrated from Kallstadt to the United States at age 16. He anglicized his name to Frederick in 1892 when he became a U.S. citizen.[10] During the Alaska Gold Rush, he amassed a fortune by opening restaurants and hotels for gold seekers on their way to the region. After his death, his fortune was passed on to his wife and son. Frederick Trump was a second cousin of Henry J. Heinz, founder of H. J. Heinz Company. In 1902 he married Elisabeth Christ, who was born in 1880 and who died on June 6, 1966. She moved to the United States with him. Like her husband, she was a native of Kallstadt, born as the daughter of Philipp and Marie Christ. Philipp Christ was descended from Johannes Christ (16261688/9) of Flörsheim, Hesse.[11] Elizabeth Christ Trump was a descendant of organ builder Johann Michael Hartung (1708–1763) through her paternal grandmother Sabina Christ.[11] Friedrich Trump was the father of Elizabeth (Elisabeth) Trump (1904–1961), real estate developer Fred Trump (1905–1999) and physicist and inventor John G. Trump (1907–1985).

Fred Trump (1905–1999), born in New York, was one of the biggest real estate developers in New York City.[10][12] Using his fathers's heritance, Fred Trump and his mother Elizabeth founded Elizabeth Trump & Son. Donald Trump later renamed it The Trump Organization and served as its chairman and president until assuming the office of U.S. President.[13] Fred Trump married Mary MacLeod (1912–2000), a native of Tong, a small village near Stornoway, in the Western Isles of Scotland. She was the daughter of fisherman Malcolm Macleod and Mary Macleod (née Smith).[14] At age 17, she immigrated to the United States and started working as a maid in New York.[15] Fred and Mary met in New York and married in 1936, settling together in Queens. Mary became a U.S. citizen in 1942.[15][16][17][18] Fred Trump was the father of the businessman Donald Trump. Donald Trump has said that he is "proud" of his German heritage, having served as grand marshal of the 1999 German-American Steuben Parade in New York City.[17][18] While walking through the city and seeing Trump Tower, Donald Trump recalled saying: "This is a long way from Kallstadt."[19]

John G. Trump married Elora Sauerbrun (1913–1983), and they were the parents of John Gordon Trump (1938–2012).

The 2016 media interest about Kallstadt started in the middle of the night after the announcement of Trump's election. The local reaction has been mixed.[20] There is not much interest in becoming a place of pilgrimage for Trump aficionados; local tourism is already flourishing.[20] The house where Trump's grandfather Friedrich (Frederick) Trump was born is currently for sale.[7][7][21] Deutsche Welle notes: "[T]he villagers used to have a better opinion of Donald Trump, before he started his boisterous campaign."[22]

Family tree

Henry J. Heinz, the founder of the Heinz company, was the grandson of Charlotte Louisa Trump of Kallstadt
  • Johann Philipp Drumpft (1667–1707), married Juliana Maria Rodenroth
    • Johann Sebastian Drumpft (1699–1756), married Susanna Margaretha Kohl
      • Johann Paul Drumpft (1727–1792), married Maria Elisabetha Setzer
        • Charlotte Louisa Trump (1789–1833), married Johann Georg Heinz
          • John Henry Heinz (1811–1891), emigrated to the United States in 1840
        • Johannes Drumpft (1789–1835), married Susanna Maria Bechtloff
          • Friedrich Trump (died 1876), married Elisabetha Trump
          • Maria Katharina Trump (born 1827)
          • Christian Johannes Trump (1829–1877), married Katharina Kober (1836–1922)
            • Johannes Trump (born 1860)
            • Katharina Trump (born 1861)
            • Jakob Trump (born 1863)
            • Sybilla Luisa Trump (1865–1931), moved to New York City, the United States, married a German-born man named Schuster
            • Konrad Trump (born 1868)
            • Friedrich Trump (1869–1918), barber and restaurant and hotel manager, married Elisabeth Christ, moved to the United States in 1885/1905
              • Elizabeth (Elisabeth) Trump (1904–1961), married William O. Walter
                • William Trump Walter (born 1931)
                • John W. Walter (born 1934), referred to as the Trump "family historian"[23]
              • Frederick Christ Trump (1905–1999), real estate developer, married Mary MacLeod (1912–2000)
              • John George Trump (1907–1985), married Elora Sauerbrun (1913–1983)
                • John Gordon Trump (1938–2012)
            • Elisabetha Trump (born 1873), married Karl Freund
            • Barbara Trump (born 1876)
          • Anna Elisabetha Trump (born 1831), married Konrad Schwinn

Immediate family of Donald Trump

Donald Trump has married three times, to Ivana Zelníčková, Marla Maples and Melania Knauss.[25]

Trump has four adult children from two previous marriages: Donald Jr., Ivanka, and Eric Trump with Ivana Trump, and Tiffany Trump with Marla Maples. Trump has one son with Melania Trump, Barron, born on March 20, 2006. He will be the first pre-teen son to live in the White House since John F. Kennedy Jr. arrived as an infant in 1961.[26] All three of his children with Ivana Trump are currently Executive Vice Presidents at The Trump Organization. Tiffany Trump is a recent college graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, her father's alma mater.[27]

Religious affiliations

The Trump family are Lutheran members[28] of the Evangelical Church of the Palatinate, although that region has been overwhelmingly Calvinist[29] since the mid 16th century.[30] Members of the family's American branch tend to be Presbyterians, or adherents of other Reformed churches. Donald Trump's parents belonged to the Reformed Church in America, although he was confirmed at one of the Presbyterian Church (USA) congregations himself.[31] This matter of membership does not play a big role since he attends services of both denominations, and other ones that are part of the Reformed tradition.


  1. 1 2 Connolly, Kate (29 January 2016). "Kallstadt, Germany: on the trail of 'the Donald' in the Trump ancestral home" via The Guardian.
  2. "Donald Trump, Germany's disfavored son". 23 September 2016.
  3. Bahlow: Deutsches Namenslexikon (1982). MHG trumpe, trumbe, trume could mean either "trumpet" or "drum". Lexer, Mittelhochdeutsches Handwörterbuch (1872-1878) records variants in d- (drumme, drume, drumpe) under the meaning "drum"
  4. spelling variants Drumb, Tromb, Tromp, Trum, Trumpff, Dromb. Kate Connolly, Kallstadt, Germany: on the trail of 'the Donald' in the Trump ancestral home, The Guardian, 29 January 2016. (Blair 2001:26) cites Hanns Drumpf, recorded in 1608, as the first known bearer of the name in Kallstadt.
  5. Blair, Gwenda (2001). The Trumps: Three Generations of Builders and a Presidential Candidate (1st ed.). Simon & Schuster. p. 26. ISBN 9780743210799.
  6. Ernst Merk: Heimatbuch des Edelweinortes Kallstadt. 1952
  7. 1 2 3 "Donald Trumps Wurzeln: King of New York, Knallkopf of Kallstadt". Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. 20 January 2016.
  8. "Kings of Kallstadt | Dokumentarfilm: Mein Dorf, Ketchup & der König von New York" (in German). SWR Fernsehen. Retrieved 2016-11-27.
  9. 1 2 "Deutsche Großeltern: Donald Trump, King of Kallstadt". Die Welt. Retrieved 2016-11-27.
  10. 1 2 Blair, Gwenda (August 24, 2015). "The Man Who Made Trump Who He Is". Politico. Retrieved July 24, 2016.
  11. 1 2 "GEDBAS: Vorfahren von Frederick Christ TRUMP".
  12. "Mary MacLeod Trump Philanthropist, 88". The New York Times (Obituary). August 9, 2000. Retrieved May 12, 2016.
  13. "Trump Organization Next Generation: Donald Jr Ivanka Eric Trump Hotel Collection Real Estate Casinos Golf Clubs Restaurants Merchandise Corporation Company Publications". Retrieved May 14, 2016.
  14. Mary Pilon, Donald Trump's Immigrant Mother, New Yorker, 24 June 2016.
  15. 1 2 Pilon, Mary (June 24, 2016). "Donald Trump's Immigrant Mother". The New Yorker.
  16. McGrane, Sally (April 29, 2016). "The Ancestral German Home of the Trumps". The New Yorker.
  17. 1 2 Carrell, Severin (June 9, 2008). "'I feel Scottish,' says Donald Trump on flying visit to mother's cottage". The Guardian. Retrieved July 24, 2016.
  18. 1 2 Frates, Chris (August 24, 2015). "Donald Trump's immigrant wives". CNN. Retrieved September 3, 2015.
  19. The Editors of TIME (April 29, 2016). TIME Donald Trump: The Rise of a Rule Breaker. TIME. p. 31. ISBN 1683302370.
  20. 1 2 Frasch, Timo (2016-11-09). "Im Ort von Trumps Vorfahren: 'Trump hat sich wenigstens getraut, das auch zu zeigen'". Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. ISSN 0174-4909. Retrieved 2016-11-27.
  21. "Nach US-Wahl: Trump-Haus in Kallstadt steht zum Verkauf!". Heidelberg24. 9 November 2016.
  22. "Donald Trump's German roots". Deutsche Welle.
  23. For Donald Trump’s Family, an Immigrant’s Tale With 2 Beginnings, The New York Times
  24. "Michael Kors, Anna Wintour, Kate Hudson and Blaine Trump at God's Love We Deliver Gala". 18 October 2016 via The New York Times.
  25. "The Model American". The New Yorker. May 9, 2016. Retrieved November 10, 2016.
  26. Yanez, Luisa (November 9, 2016). "Barron Trump: First young presidential son in the White House since 1963". Miami Herald. Retrieved November 10, 2016.
  27. "US election: Trump children - who is the new first family?". BBC News. November 9, 2016. Retrieved November 10, 2016.
  28. The small town of Kallstadt has only one religious building, the Central Lutheran church.
  29. Note that local Calvinists are also members of the Evangelical Church of the Palatinate, because it is a United church.
  30. Blair 2001, pp. 28–29
  31. Blair, Gwenda (2001). The Trumps: Three Generations of Builders and a Presidential Candidate (1st ed.). Simon & Schuster. pp. 28–29, 453; ISBN 9780743210799.


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