The earliest certain appearance of ancestors of the Nassau-Siegen immigrants to Virginia was in 1624, when the Treasury Accounts show Jost Heimbach at Seelbach and Johann Heimbach at Trupbach, villages very close together 2 or 3 miles west of the city of Siegen. These two men were probably brothers. Jost Heimbach of Seelbach was the ancestor of Jacob Hanback of the Little Fork group in Culpeper Co., as well as two members of the 1714 group, Elizabeth, wife of Harman Utterback, and Philip Fishback. Johann Heimbach of Trupbach was the ancestor of Elizabeth, wife of Philip Fishback. The surname occurs at Siegen as early as 1599, when two Johann "Hembachs" are shown residing there, one a member of the Weavers Guild, the other of the Bakers Guild. One of these Siegen men was probably old enough to have been the father of the 1624 men at Seelbach and Trupbach; but it seems somewhat more likely that the family originated at Seelbach and that the Siegen citizens, too, came from that village. The list of inhabitants and property owners at Seelbach in 1563 shows only four families living there on four farms, namely, Henne (i.e., Johann) with no surname, lessee of the farm belonging to the Holy Ghost Hospital at Siegen; Goebel Beer, lessee of the Wildenburg farm; Johann Knie, lessee of the Count of Sayn's farm; and Goedert Spielmann, ancestor of the American Spilman family, the only independent property owner. The Knies, Spielmanns and Beers continued to live at Seelbach in later years, and it seems likely that the Heimbachs were descended from Henne of the Hospital farm. Jost Heimbach of Seelbach, his son Georg, and his grandson Jacob, were all associated justices of the Siegen district court, the Hain Court, and it seems not unlikely that the intervening generation between Henne of 1563 and Jost Heimbach of 1624 was a "Jost Scheffe" (i.e., Jost Schoeffe**, or associate justice) who was living at Seelbach in 1599.
The Heimbachs of Seelbach probably came originally from Heimbach, a manor farm of the nobility between Siegen and Trupbach, which was later sold off and disappears from the records. Peter von Heimbach, founder between 1417 and 1444 of the ironworks in the Weidenau township later called Muesenershuetten was probably one of the last of these noble Heimbachs.
*This is an excerpt from the book Descendants of the Nassau-Siegen Immigrants to Virginia 1714-1750" by B.C. Holtsclaw; Germann, 1964; pg. 175-176.
** Schöffe, in Germany, is a lay jurist or or assessor assigned primarily to a lower criminal court to make decisions both on points of law and on fact jointly with professional jurists. A Schöffe may also sit on a higher court.