Gette Genealogy


The Gette family appears to have developed in the Alsace-Lorraine and Rhine-Main regions in Germany and France.  The surname is essentially a French rendering of the German surname Goethe.  It is found in both countries today.  We have located two different but similar family crests for the Gette name and both are shown. There appear to be many variations of the name  including:  Gette, Goetten, Gotte, Gete, Geten and Getten.

We have traced our own Gette family to a group referred to as Germans from Russia and appear to be rather recent immigrants to the United States, Canada and Argentina (early 1900's); while the French Gettes immigrated to the United States much earlier.  The first Gette appears in North America in 1653 and he was Urban Gette in Montreal, Canada.

​As far as the Gettes who lived in Russia, it appears that they moved to Russia during the time of Catherine the Great when Catherine issued a manifesto that would bring many Germans to Russia.  As a result of a change in what was promised in 1874, many of the Gettes started leaving their homes in Russia and moved to the United States, Canada or Argentina. The Gette family in Argentina can also be found at:​.

​We have traced the Christian Gette family to the Village of Semenovka in Russia where we have located the 1798 census that confirms that Christian, Friedrich, Johann Adam, Kasper, Klara Elisabetha, Margareta, Maria Theresia and Valentin Gette were living at the time.  Thanks to research by George Gette of Regina, Sask., Canada and Viktor Gette, who in his retirement years and while awaiting his documents for Germany, did research at the archives of Saratov, we have traced the family to Christian Goetten (Gette) who was born about 1733.

As Imperial Russia expanded, a great need developed for capable and industrious workers, especially farmers, to settle these new and often unsafe lands. As a result, many Germans, eager to improve their positions in life, began to colonize in Russia. In 1762, Catherine the Great issued a first manifesto inviting foreigners to settle in Russia with no response so in 1763 she issued a second manifesto and this time it attracts thousands of colonists, largely because of the following incentives: Free transportation to Russia; Large tracts of free land, plenty of water, free timber; The free exercise of religion; Interest-free loans for purchasing equipment; Freedom from taxes for ten to thirty years, depending on the area of settlement; Exemption from military service for themselves and their descendants and Local self-government in colonies.

​But in 1874, the Imperial Russian government amended the 1871 decree and instituted compulsory military conscription of German colonists immediately.  As a result, from 1874 until 1914 (when the World War I began), thousands of German colonists emigrated from Russia to North and South America including my grandfather and uncle.

So the two brothers Andreas (born June 1, 1876) and Ignatz (born February 6, 1886) left Russia together and arrived at Ellis Island on 17 March 1913 where they became farmers in North Dakota.  The other brothers included Phillip Gette (1863), Valentin Gette (1865) and Anton Gette (1868), Georg Gette (1879) and Heinrich Gette (1881).