Family tradition recorded by William Renick (born 1804) in his "Memoirs, Correspondence and Reminiscences of William Renick" (Circleville, Ohio, 1880) He said that the Renicks migrated from Germany to Scotland to escape religious persecution and that the name changed from Rinewicke to Renwick. Part of the family moved from Scotland to Colerain County, Ireland and then to Pennsylvania.
Note:When we printed RENICK PIONEERS in 1980 we included his story for reader interest only. There is absolutly no proof that The Rennick,Renick clan in America today can trace our surname to Germany. Mrs. Dorthy Luttrell and Major General Rod Renick both of whom had done extensive research also refuted this claim.
This myth always puzzled me but in re-reading William's story, I concluded that his Pirate story and the Peer of the Realm story were perhaps embellished but I still could not figure why he made claim to German origins.
While visiting Lancaster Ohio(near Circleville) in 2007 the answer became clear. This area of Ohio was settled Primarily by prosperous German farmers from Pennsylvania who were among the elite of the Townfolk. The Scot-Irish (then called Irish) were subsistence farmers and somewhat lower on the social scale so it would be natural for old William to also claim some German Heritage.
Thomas A. Renick 2009
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