Monday, January 28, 2013

Joseph Fox (1761 - 1821)

By 1775, at least 100,000 Germans had entered the colonies, making up a third of the population of Pennsylvania. (Germans in the American Revolutionary War, Robert Wilde)  Like many of his neighbors, Joseph Fox (Fuchs) was of German descent. The Land Patent map pictured below shows a number of adjoining properties.  Joseph  Fox and another ancestor, Valentine Miller, were neighbors.   Their  farms were in the area that is now Washington Township on the border of Lower Mount Bethel Township, Northampton County, Pennsylvania.  Now, that was an interesting  discovery. 

Joseph, born June 12, 1761,  was the son of  Johann Christophel Fuchs and Rosina Elisabetha Link.  His father  immigrated to America at the age of 27,   arriving September 27, 1740 on the ship Lydia from Germany.  Johann Christophel Fuchs  is recognized through the DAR as  having provided Patriotic Service.  He may have been too old to fight, having died May 1, 1780,  during the time period of the Revolutionary War.  But he,  like so many of  American German population in Northampton County  was a true patriot and supporter of the American pursuit for Independence. 

The Pennsylvania Archives 5th Series  reports that Joseph enlisted as a private in the 5th Battalion, Mount Bethel Company, Northampton County, Militia, Private 7th class., May 1, 1782.   He served under the command of Captain John Long.  Nothing more is known about his service record.  The usual tour of duty is reported to have been 6 months. 

He was married to Christina Reimel, daughter of George Reimel and his wife  Anna Elizabeth Barbara.  Christina was born in 1762.   Joseph and Christina were married on the 6th of November, 1781. 

The 1790 census for Lower Mount Bethel Township, Northampton County Pennsylvania:
Fox, Joseph   1 free white male,   1 free white males under age of 16,    5 free white females

The records of the births and baptisms  of most of their children appear in the Church Records of the Evangelical Lutheran and Reformed Congregation of Mount Bethel Township, Northampton Co., Pa. 1914.  Services at this church were conducted in German until 1840.  These records are the first transcription from the old German Record. The transcription  was done by the Rev. Dr. Wm. Wackernagel, Professor in Muhlenburg College for the Rev. W.E. Werner, pastor of the Christ Lutheran Church in Upper Mount Bethel.

 1.  Anna Elizabeth Fuchs was born October 22,  1782  and baptized on November 3, 1782.
 2.  Rosina Fuchs was born April 10, 1784.  She was baptized at St, Peter's Union Church in  Plainfield Township.
 3.  George Fuchs was born February 22, 1788 and baptized on March 30. 1788.
 4.  Susanna Fuchs was born October 5, 1789  and baptized on October 25, 1789.
 5.  Anna Maria Fuchs was born October 15, 1791 and baptized on January 22, 1792.
 6.  Joseph Fuchs, Jr was born April 13, 1794 and baptized on May 11, 1794.
 7.  Catherine Fuchs was born March 22, 1796 and baptized on May 8, 1796.
 8.  Christopher Fuchs was born March 13, 1798 and baptized on May 13, 1798.
 9.  Eva Fuchs was born 14 January, 1800 (birth record not found)
10. Sarah Fuchs was born April 14, 1802 and baptized on May 30, 1802.
11. Johann Fuchs was born January 21, 1804 and baptized on April 29, 1804.
12.  Christine Fuchs was born August 21, 1805 and baptized on December 1, 1805.
13.  Jacob Fuchs was born 1807 (birth record not found)

Joseph is buried  in the Old Union Cemetery  in Upper Mount Bethel Township, Northampton County, Pennsylvania.  His grave is honored with an American flag.  He died May 22, 1821. 

The location of Christina's  grave is unknown.  Her name does not appear in the list of burials  transcribed  in the early 1900's for  the Old Union Cemetery, but is seems likely that she is also buried here.   She died in 1832.

Joseph Fox and Christina Reimel  were the 6th great grand parents of my husband Ronald.   Their daughter Susanna married  Joseph Ross who had a daughter named Caroline.  Caroline married  married Philip Deats  and had a son named Joseph whose daughter Lillie May married George Good.   Their son Earl married Edna May Frey

                              This page and all contents © 2013 Cynthia H. Smith
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Friday, January 25, 2013

Thomas Merritt (1758 - 1834)

You have heard of the Minute Men in Massachusetts; men who were enlisted in the armed services, going about their daily lives providing for their families until there was a call to arms when they dropped everything to  go into battle against the British.  But did you know that  men in the  neighboring  state of New York also were  called to duty in the same fashion?

Currier & Ives print, "Minutemen of the Revolution"

My ancestor, Thomas Merritt was one of those soldiers serving as a private  in the 8th Regiment,  Albany County, New York, Militia  under the command of Col. Robert Van Rensselaer.  He is also found in the list of men identified as having served The Militia (Land Bounty Rights) Ulster County, Fourth Regiment  and  The Militia Orange County, Fourth Regiment.   "The Militia was called out when wanted; kept as long as wanted, and the soldiers then sent to their homes. Sometimes a regiment or a part of a regiment would be called out half  a dozen times in the course of a year, and for half a dozen days at a time, and again it might  not be needed in the entire year.  Officers and men seem to have served in different organizations  almost indiscriminately.  At one call, they were in one regiment or company, and at another call,  in another regiment or company."  New York in the Revolution as Colony and State, 3d ed., 2 vols. (Albany: 1904), pages 10, 166, 265.

Thomas  reports in his  affidavit for Pension filed in 1833 that he first volunteered as a minute man and held himself available  for service of his country until the end of the war. According to his pension, he was in Captain Gore's Company, Col. Clinton's Regiment, NY Militia.  Among his tours of duty he  attests to being at Fort Montgomery  protecting the Hudson River near West Point  from advancement by the British.  And  at one time he marched to New Jersey  for service there.

Records show that Thomas Merritt was  born February 13, 1758 in New Marlborough, Ulster County, New York.   His parents may have been James Merrittt and Martha Bloomer.  After the war he came to Sugar Creek, settling in Troy, Bradford Co., Pennsylvania before 1812 and there continued to reside until his death on November 23, 1834.  He was married to Anna Ayers.  Anna attests to her marriage to Thomas Merritt in the Revolutionary  War Pension papers filed  for Thomas' pension.  In the records,  Andrew Ayers attests that he is the brother of Anna Merritt.  Anna attested that she was the wife of Thomas Merritt having been married November 9, 1784.  Anna  Ayers Merritt said that she lived in Coeymans, NY as a child. She was born November 9, 1761.

The 1790 Census for New Marlborough, Ulster, County, NY  1790  shows this account of the family  of Thomas and Anna.
     Merritt, Thomas --  1 Male16 and over who would be Thomas,  1 Male under 16,  2  Females who would be Anna and daughter Sarah who was born January 1, 1786.   

A son, James was born April 25, 1792.  James attested in the Pension Application Papers  that he often heard his parents tell that they were in New York when General Washington landed there for the  dispatching of the army at the close of the war and that they were married previous to that period.  A daughter, Abigail, was born on September 16, 1796.

Thomas and Anna were married 50 years before he passed away in 1834.  They are  buried in  the old section of Glenwood Cemetery, Troy, Pennsylvania.   


His stone is inscribed - 
                      Thomas Merritt 
                       Nov. 23, 1834   
                       aged 76 years 
                          9 mons & 
                            10 days.

His grave is marked with a plaque and flag honoring his service in the Revolutionary War.  

Anna's  stone is inscribed -

     wife of 
Thomas Merritt  
Jan. 10,  1843  
aged 81 years 
2 mons &  1 d.                                                                          

Sarah Merritt, daughter of Thomas and Anna,  married Jonathan Scott.  Jonathan  provides a  record of ages for himself and his family in Thomas Merritt's Pension Application Papers.  In Jonathan's own hand writing  we can see  the name of  his son Hosea, who married Sarah Angeline Chauncey.  Sarah Chauncey Scott was the mother of Helen Scott Estep, my great grand mother.

                                        This page and all contents © 2013 Cynthia H. Smith
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Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Valentine Miller (1754 - 1834)

The lives of Valentine and Susanna Miller were two of the first ancestor stories that I uncovered when I first begin researching family history.  Their daughter Elizabeth married John Houck  whose Bible  I found in my grandparent's attic.  The quest to find Elizabeth's parents soon led to the discovery of  Valentine Miller in the family tree.

Valentine Miller was born October 22, 1754 in Williams Township,  Northampton Co., Pennsylvania, the son of immigrant ancestor Bernhart Mullar (Miller) (1722-1792) & Maria Eva Muller (1724-1802).    Record of his baptism on  November 18,  1754 is found in the church records of the Williams Township Church.  

He was a young man of about 22 years when he was drafted into service.  Military records  show that he served two  different  terms  as a Revolutionary War Soldier.

The Pennsylvania Archives 5th Series  shows  service as  a  Private (5th Class), 1st Battalion, 1st Company, Northampton County Militia.  The 1st Battalion in Northampton Co. was formed in Williams and Lower Saucon Townships.  Col. George Hubler  was the officer in charge.  Capt. Joseph Frey was head of the Battalion.

The inscription on the brass plate at his grave site in the Old Union Cemetery  in Upper Mount Bethel Township, Northampton Co, PA  states  he served as a Private in the 3rd Battalion, 8th Company, Northampton Militia.

Valentine Miller married Susanna Laubach  sometime around 1778.  Susanna Laubach was the daughter of Johann Georg Laubach and his wife Margretha.  She was  born  November 27, 1756. Her  baptism record  on December 13, 1756 is found  in Tohickon Union Church, Bedminster Twp, Bucks Co, PA.  Also found on page  893 of the "History of Bucks County": Susanna, wife  of Valentine Miller, the eldest child of John George  Laubach.  Her birth date in these records differs slightly from that given on her  tombstone.  This is often the case  when  records have been transcribed from the old German script in which they were first written.

At the close of the Revolutionary War, Valentine moved his family north from Williams Township to Lower Mount Bethel, Northampton County, Pennsylvania.  Property  ownership  is evidenced in the record of  Land Warrants for Northampton Co., Pa. 1752 - 1886.  Copied from the Pennsylvania Archives, Third Series, Vol.26
MILLER, Valentine             200  acres        Date of Survey Feb. 4, 1790

This record in the 1790 census for Lower Mt. Bethel PA:
Miller, Valentine    1 free white male,   4 free white males under age of 16,    3 free white females

Valentine and Susanna became the parents of 10 children.  Their daughter Elizabeth married John Houck and had a daughter Anna who married John McEwen.  The McEwen Family of Richmond, Pennsylvania are descendents.

Valentine Miller lived to be 79 years old.  The following document at Easton PA.  Orphan's Court record Vol. 12, page 128, Aug. 22 1834.  "Valentine Miller died intestate sometime in the month of April 1834 leaving a widow named Susanna and some ten children to wit George (the petitioner), Michael, Barnet, Joseph, Jacob, John, Elizabeth intermarried with John Houck, Catherine intermarried with Jacob Albert,  Eve intermarried with John Reiser, Susanna intermarried with John Weinberg and the issue of Margaret, deceased who was the wife of Christian Schick and who died before her father, to wit, Valentine, Christian, Samuel and Rebecca."

Susanna Miller is buried in the Old Union Cemetery  in Upper Mount Bethel, Pennsylvania.  The inscription on the gravestone  reads  "Susanna Miller, wife of Valintine Miller was born 7 November 1757  and died 5th of January 1837  She was 79 years, 2 months and 28 days old."

                                                      This page and all contents © 2012 Cynthia H. Smith
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Sunday, January 13, 2013

My Revolutionary War Ancestors

As I  worked on my genealogy research over the years I  always noted in my files if an ancestor served in the Revolutionary War.   Recently I discovered that the DAR has made their Index available online which has made it possible for me to search for the record of service for each ancestor.  The Pennsylvania Archives has been an invaluable resource too.  Heritage Quest also provides Revolutionary War Records. 

So far I have found 93 ancestors... Yep, that's right, 93 men  who offered their service to the War of Independence so that this nation would be a free country.  God Bless Them!  These men represent both the Hughes and the Smith sides of my family tree. They may not have all been men who went off to battle, but they were all people who supported the effort to gain independence by pledging their allegiance and preparing themselves to answer the call to arms if and when it arose. 

My goal is to write a tribute for each of these American heroes, their families and their wives.  After all this blog is about our Grammies!

I am not sure what order I will follow,  but here is the list I will be working with in alphabetical order.

Christian Billheimer (1742 - 1826)
Bernard Bowman  (1749 - 1821)
Nathaniel Brittian (1744 - 1817)

Simon Jacob Diehl  (1738 - 1819)

Christian Eilenberger  (1731 - 1804)
Jacob Emrich (1728 - 1797)
Lamrock Flower  (1719 - 1815)

Michael Glass  (1736 - 1808)

AdamHamscher  (1736 - 1809)
Peter Hartman  (1740 - 1810)

Peter Hilliard  (1754 - 1834)
Henry Hoover 
Wendel Hower  (1720 - after 1790)
Andreas Hower  (1749 - before 1798)

Jacob Hubler  (1711 – 1789
John Johnson  (1761 - 1815)
Michael Kressler   (1740 - 1796)

Peter Kocher   (1740 - 1803)
George Lantz  (1757 - 1840)

Ludwick Lang  (1738 - 1795)
John George Laubach  (1726 - 1802)
Lawrence Lommason (1747 - 1810)
David Marsh  (1730 - 1798)
James Merritt (1734 - 1813)
Thomas Merritt  (1758 - 1834)
Elias Middaugh  (1756- 1819)

George Jacob Miller (1739 - 1805)
Valentine Miller   (1754 - 1834)
George Michael Mumper  (1723 - 1807)
Michael Musselman (1758 - 1827)
Joseph Norris  (1729 - 1813)

John Philip Odenwalder  (1721 - 1795)
Michael Raub (1733 - 1816)
John Reiswig (1745 - 1810)
Michael Schmell (1730 - 1838)
John Christian Schmidt  (1739 - 1806)

Johann Heinrich Seidel  (1732 - 1801)
Abraham Sewitz  (1750 - 1817)
Robert Simonton  (1717 - 1782)
Jacob Sumstine (1755 - 1812)
Abraham Van Aken   (1720 - unknown)

Frederick Vogel  (    - 1812)
John Vogel  (???? - ????)
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