An ancestor from Kettenis near Eupen
Nikolaus Schunck (* 04-06-1746 in Kettenis, † 17-07-1776 in Kettenis) was the first Schunck from Kettenis near Eupen (nowadays in Belgium), of whom the profession of weaver („Tuchmacher“) is known.
Eupen experienced a big boom as a textile town at that time. The preconditions were fulfilled in an ideal way: the availability of wool (of sheep from the High Fens which had an excellent highland wool, soft bog water, also from the Fens, and cheap workers.
It was assumed for a long time, that the ancestors of this family came from Oppendorf near Bedburg in Rhenania. There aren’t any pieces of evidence to our knowledge about this, however, and relations weren’t cultivated either. There is only a oral tradition, however, which cannot be correct that way. See the article The Schunck families in Kettenis and Bedburg-Lipp. This does not mean, that there is no connection between these both families, but if so it must be of earlier date.
Here follows the history which was told in the family, but that can not be true like that:
After Nicolaus Schunck, who lived and died (1776) in Kettenis near Eupen (Belgium), they were weavers. This was not the case before, on the Schunckenhof (Schunck farm in Oppendorf near Bedburg) because Constantin Schunck, the father of Nicolaus Schunck, was a “Halfe”, a rich farmer who didn’t need to weave in winter. They were tenants, which meant their farms didn’t get smaller every generation, according to the Franconian inheriting & dividing right but the lease as a rule changed on the oldest son. Nikolaus, the sixth child and fourth son of Constantin, knew that he had to do something else. He found it in Kettenis near Eupen where wool industry boomed at that time.He died in Kettenis after only four marriage years .
It is not astonishing that, according to the death certificate, the first Schunck in Kettenis was a weaver.
Nicolaus Schunck died in Kettenis when he was only 30 years old, after 4 marriage years on 17/07/1776.
Also his grandson, Nikolaus Severin, was a weaver. He was the last common ancestor of the Dutch and the Belgian Schuncks. He expected his sons to join his shop, but only Severin Joseph did so. The first son, called Nikolaus of course, went to the weaving mill Delius in Aachen, Germany. (Weaving industry in the region of Aachen - German)
Later he and his brothers Wilhelm and Ludwig, and for some time Arnold too, went to Białystok, in the russian part of Poland. They had been invited to modernise a weaving shop. We have heard that some Schuncks lived there until the end of World War II, but we don´t have any further information.