I just received an email from my friend Ernst-Dieter from Bassum. He just checked the Sudwalde church records and was unable to find Friedrich Rathkamp, b 1834. He searched a year before and a year after this date and still came up dry.
Herr Wessels recently sent me some lists of Rathkamps from Diepholz which mentions a Fr Rathkamp in Albringhausen in 1855. This is a possibility, especially since this is where his wife Dorothee was from.
I’m disappointed, but hopeful of finding something. I KNOW he’s in the area.