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Today, the focus of the von Pressentin family history is rightfully centered on the village of Prestin, where the 200-year-old family chapel is being carefully restored. However, it has been a very long time since the USA branch of the von Pressentins lived in Prestin.

Our branch of the von Pressentin family is descended from the five brothers who emigrated from Germany in 1868 and 1873. This branch is known as the "Stieten Line - Jesendorf branch - North American "House"

Our last direct ancestor to live in Prestin was Nicolaus Otto von Pressentin, born at the Prestin estate in 1671. He was born to Bernd and Anna Dorothea von Pressentin, the uncle and niece who married to preserve the family after the disastrous times of the Thirty Years War.

So, for the past 300+ years, our branch of the family has not lived at Prestin, or even in very close proximity. Their occupations took them to various parts of northern Germany —and even to Russia and what is now Poland. On these web pages, I have tried to follow the paths of those ancestors, sharing what I have learned about their occupations and where they lived.

These are the generations of our direct ancestors from Bernd and Dorothea von Pressentin forward:

Nicolaus Otto, 1671-1732
Gustav Friedrich, 1715-1790
Karl Bernhard Ludwig, 1743-1805
Karl Christian, 1782-1843
Bernhard Friedrich, 1814-1893

All von Pressentin family members living in the USA today are descendants of Bernhard Friedrich's sons:

Kurt Gottlieb Wilhelm,1848- 1917.
Karl Julius Otto, 1849 - 1924
Bernhard Emil Max, 1856 - 1931
Adalbert Paul Friedrich, 1858 - 1922
Otto Wilhelm Rudolph, 1862 - 1945

The rest of these web pages will follow these German von Pressentin ancestors through their migration to the USA. An Appendix page at the end will provide links or additional supporting documents.

Enjoy this tour through our common history!


Barbara Halliday,
a great-granddaughter of
Karl Julius Otto von Pressentin,
who was the trail blazer for his family in the United States

The von Pressentin
Coat of Arms

There have been many versions of the
Von Pressentin Coat of Arms.

Above: Probably 19th Century.

The family coat of arms has evolved over the centuries, but the basic element has always been a griffin's talons with wings.

There are several different accepted spellings—with the three most common being "gryphon," "griffin" and "griffon."

(No, you won't find a "griffin" in any bird book.) These were mythological beasts commonly depicted as having the head, forelegs and wings of an eagle, and the hindquarters, tail and occasionally ears of a lion.

They have been known for centuries as symbols of strength and vigilance.

Below: one of the earlier versions of the von Pressentin family crest.

1358 A.D.

©2007 B.Halliday

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