About Frisia

When it was discovered that the family Haye originated in Germany – Ostfriesland , the Duchy of Oldenburg to be exact, it was a bit of a shock. Especially as the Dutch had suffered the occupation by the Deutsche Reich (Nazi Germany). However, there seemed to have always been an interaction between Holland and Germany, especially during the problem of the 16th and 17th centuries. People have always been emigrating to areas where there was abundant employment and still do today. The name Haye has had quite a number of versions. Most likely starting from Hajo, this being derived from the Frisian Hajo (Hedge). As most likely the name-giving in the earlier centuries was based on the type of job one carried out. Thus Hajo (hedge builder/maintainer), or farmer. The name now became Hajen and Haje in Germany. Probably due to writing errors. When the 'Auswanderung' (emigration) really took off, some of the family came to Holland. During the 16th and 17th century Holland experienced a golden era. Shipbuilding to build the ships of the VOC (Dutch East-India Company). This took place on the wharves of Amsterdam. There have been quite a number of Hajen's emigrating, Holland, the USA, Belgium just to name a few. I am concerned with the Hajen who began the line of which I am a part. When Johann Hajen came to Amsterdam, he was a carpenter, readily finding employment in the aforementioned shipbuilding industry. Johann arrived between 1720 and 1730. The most interesting part now commenced, due to language problems he became registered in Amsterdam as Jan Haaij (Jan sounding like Johann to a Dutch registrar). Then due to birth register errors the name started changing again – to Haaijen, Haaije, Haije and latterly to Haye. The letter y is a late addition to the Dutch language, it is usually a ij – treated as a vowel, they have the same sound. It makes research in the family annals, ancestor records a rather interesting activity.

Johann Hajen (Jan Haaij) – Born Wehrderhôhle, Berne 1703- 1760.