Ellwood Roberts' Biographical Annals, 1904: Montgomery Co, PA
Vol I - Part 17: pp. 364 - 388.

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JOHN E. BRECHT, son of John Gottlieb and Catharine (Ernst) Brecht, for many years a member of the board of directors of the People's National Bank, of Norristown, where he lived retired the last few years of his life, died early on the morning of March 25, 1904, at his residence, 926 West Marshall street. He had been in feeble health for more than a year, but his death came unexpectedly, being a severe shock to the community in which he lived, of which few members were more valued or so highly respected as he. He was interred at Worcester Schwenkfelder cemetery, March 30, 1904.

John G. Brecht (father) was born in Wurtemberg, Germany, February 6, 1806. He was the son of Conrad Brecht. He acquired near his home such education as was obtainable in his day. He became a weaver by occupation, and attained considerable skill in his calling. He wrought in silk, woolen and linen. At the age of twenty-one years he went to Marseilles, France, where he

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secured a good position in a large silk mill. In 1832 he came with his father to America, and located at New Britain near Doylestown, in Bucks county, Pennsylvania, where he continued to work as a weaver. In 1836 he married Catharine Frances Ernst, who was the daughter of George Ernst. The Ernsts were also natives of Germany. John G. Brecht was a farmer in addition to his occupation of weaving.

After farming in several localities, John G. Brecht removed with his family to Ohio, but his wife's relatives being anxious that he should return to Pennsylvania, he did so, and took charge of a large farm and mill in Lancaster county. His wife died while he was at that place, on December 22, 1861, and was buried in the little Mennonite graveyard at Strasburg. Soon after Mrs. Brecht's death the family returned to Montgomery county, Pennsylvania, and resided for several years on the property of Jacob Heebner, now owned by Henry H. Heebner, in Worcester township.

In 1865 John G. Brecht purchased a lot in Towamencin township, west of Kulpsville. About this time he married (second wife) Mary, widow of Frederick Merkle. He died in Towamencin township, September 25, 1881, and his remains were interred in a cemetery connected with Wentz's Reformed church, in Worcester township, Montgomery county, Pennsylvania. He had been, however, a member of the Lutheran church. His widow died in Skippack township, August 8, 1898, her remains being also interred at Wentz's church.

The children of John G. and Catharine (Ernst) Brecht (first marriage): John Ernst, subject of this sketch, born in Hilltown township, Bucks county, Pennsylvania, November 25, 1837; Elizabeth, married Samuel H. Price, of Collegeville; Jacob E., of Fort Myers, Florida, who married Clara, daughter of the late Rev. J. H. A. Bomberger, of Collegeville, and practiced dentistry at Trappe, in that vicinity, and at St. Louis, Missouri, and for a number of years has been located in Florida, where he is now engaged in the practice of medicine; Samuel E., born June 15, 1844, now of Lansdale, formerly of Skippack and Worcester townships, who married, October 23, 1869, Annie, daughter of Michael and Ann Hallman, of Skippack; Susan Louisa, now of Collegeville; George E., now of Ashbourne, formerly of Philadelphia, and Montgomery county, who married (first wife) Kate, daughter of William D. Bean, of Skippack, and, she dying in 1879, he married (second wife) Elma, daughter of Milton and Sarah Jenkins, of Hatfield township, in Montgomery county; Abraham E., of Germantown, born December 4, 1851, married, February 24, 1876, Josephine Brong, of Germantown, adopted daughter, and reared in the family of Adam and Julia (Brodhead) Mintzer; Sarah E., married Ephraim Hertzler, of Johnson county, Kansas, where she died January 15, 1894.

The children of Samuel E. and Annie H. Brecht: Miriam H., wife of Jacob L. Gaumer, of Lansdale; Annie H., who married Edwin S. Godshall, now of Norristown, (lied March 9, 1895; and Mary H. Brecht. Jacob L. and Miriam B. Gattmer have one child, Samuel Brecht Gaumer.

The children of Samuel H. and Elizabeth B. Price: Ella B., of Collegeville; Harry B., of Philadelphia, who married Bertha Starr, their children being Marion Price, Samuel Price, Jr., and Catharine Price.

The children of George E. Brecht: Vincent B. and William Alvin by the first marriage, and Anson, John Ernst and Sarah Elizabeth by the second marriage.

The children of Abraham E. and Josephine B. Brecht: Julianna Brodhead Brecht and Frances Harland Brecht.

John Ernst Brecht, subject of this sketch, married, February 18, 1865, Sarah, daughter of George and Sophia Kriebel, prominent members of the Schwenkfelder congregation of Towamencin church or meeting-house, where Mr. Kriebel's ancestors for several generations were born, lived and died, and where his son, Abraham Kriebel lived all his life and died, November 8, 1903, aged almost seventy years. The farm is now occupied by Abraham's son, Charles Kriebel, Jr.

Soon after his marriage John E. Brecht united with the Schwenkfeldian church, of which he was a faithful member the remainder of his life.

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He being the oldest child, was obliged, from an early age, to take part in a variety of employment incident to farm life, and had very little opportunity to make use of the educational advantages afforded by the public schools. He attended school irregularly, a few months during each winter, and grew up with a practical knowledge of the routine of farming. While quite a young man, he assisted the farmers in the neighborhood.

At the time of his marriage, he was engaged in the work of cigar-making, living about one year in Gwynedd township, but in 1866 he purchased from William D. Bean a farm of one hundred and fifteen acres in Worcester township, on which he lived and engaged in the active pursuits of agriculture until 1898, at which time he leased his farm and removed to Norristown.

Some time later he purchased the house on Marshall street in which he resided until his death, and in which his widow now lives. During almost the entire time, in the course of his farming career, he attended the Philadelphia markets, first the old Spring Garden market, and, after its erection, the Ridge Avenue market, at Eighteenth street and Ridge avenue, occupying a stand there. Having reached his majority about the time of the birth of the Republican party, he became active in its support, but he was too busy and too modest to aspire to public office.

He was one of the organizers of the Worcester Creamery Association at Centre Point, in the early eighties, and was a director to the time of his death. He was also active in organizing the Ridge Avenue Market Company, although not officially connected with it. He was a member of the board of directors of the Girard Avenue Market Company. He was connected with the People's National Bank of Norristown, from its organization in 1881 until his death.

The children of John E. and Sarah K. Brecht: Emma K., born January 21, 1866, in Gwynedd township, married, August 16, 1892, John D., son of George M. and Matilda Weber. Mr. Weber is the proprietor of Centre Point store. Their children: Sarah B., born July 6, 1895; Russell B., born January 27, 1898; John Herbert, born June 30, 1900; Marion B., born September 9, 1903.

George K., born October 7, 1867, in Worcester township, was educated in the public schools of that township and in West Chester State Normal School, graduating from the latter in 1889. Before graduating he taught at Cassel's school, in Skippack township, and at Metz school in Worcester township, one term each. In the autumn of 1889 he became principal of the Hatboro public school, remaining in that position one year. He then became principal of the Plymouth township high school, on its establishment.

After five years there he registered as a law student with Childs & Evans, a prominent law firm of Norristown, finishing his law studies in the autumn of 1898, under the direction of Louis M. Childs, the firm of Childs & Evans having meantime been dissolved, and being admitted to the Montgomery county bar. In February, 1902, he was admitted to the bar of the supreme court of Pennsylvania.

In April, 1903, he assumed the duties of secretary and trust officer of the Montgomery Trust Company, which position he still holds. On October 7, 1902, he married Rebecca Allabough Wood, daughter of William H. and Belle Morgan Wood, of Philadelphia, formerly of Montgomery county. The couple reside at 539 George street, in a house which Mr. Brecht purchased about the time of his marriage.

Samuel K., born December 14, 1869, was educated in the public schools, being one of the first graduates in Worcester after the graded course of study was adopted. He graduated from the West Chester State Normal School, in 1891, and from Haverford College in 1896. Before his graduation from the normal school, he taught two terms at the Metz school, in Worcester. Before attending college, he was principal of Bryn Mawr high school, in Lower Merion township, for two years. After completing his college course, he was instructor in the preparatory school for the Annapolis Naval Academy, Maryland. He was also similarly engaged at Perkiomen Seminary, Pennsburg, Pennsylvania, and at Pottstown high school. He was also principal of the Union school of Rushford, New York, for two years, and is at present a member of the corps of teachers at the Norristown high-school. He married, August 2, 1898, Alberta Williams, of Rushford, New York. Their children are Harold Walton, born December 23, 1899, at Rushford, New York, and Arthur Malcolm, born December 1, 1902, at Norristown.

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Catharine, born October 19, 1874, in Worcester township, also attended the State Normal School at West Chester. She married, June 9, 1903, John A. Longacre, son of David and Helena Longacre, of Norriton township. They reside in Elmira, New York, where Mr. Longacre is employed by the Empire Bridge Company, a branch of the American Bridge Company. They have one child, Ruth, born in Elmira, March 23, 1904.



WILLIAM McHARG is a descendant of an old Montgomery county family. He was born in Lower Providence township, December 18, 1842, and was reared on the farm. He received his education from the common schools of the neighborhood. He is a son of William and Rachel (Plush) McHarg; she was born in Montgomery county, and he came to this country when a boy, from Scotland. William McHarg was a son of William McHarg, a merchant on the Island of Jamaica. He made trips to London yearly and purchased his goods, and when on one of these trips he died, and his estate was lost to his heirs. He reared two sons, John and William (father). John was a sea captain and died on the Island of St. Domingo. He left a family of two children.

William McHarg (grandfather) had a brother John who came to America and purchased a tract of land on which he built a log house and a barn. This tract was near Audubon, in Lower Providence township, at which place he remained during his lifetime, tilling the soil. At his death the farm was willed to his nephew William (the father of subject). John came to this country and, after settling, he sent for this nephew William, who was quite a boy, and he remained with his uncle until he grew to manhood, and inherited the farm by his uncle's will. He remained on this farm until his death, which occurred about 1877. He was seventy-seven years old at the time of his death.

He was one of the leading members of the Lower Providence Presbyterian church and was an elder there for forty-five years. In politics Mr. McHarg was a Whig and Republican and filled several township offices. His wife survived him and died in 1884 at the old homestead. She was also a member of the Presbyterian church. She was the daughter of Lawrence Plush, of Germany, who settled in this county. At one time he owned the Perkiomen Copper Mines, and during the excitement in copper he sold the same at a good price. He then returned to Germany to stay and proceeded to collect his share of his father's estate. which he received. He then determined to retrace his steps to America, and on the voyage over was lost at sea, money and all, and his family remained in America.

His children were Catharine (Mrs. J. Mullen); Elizabeth (Mrs. H.. Keiser); Rebecca (Mrs. J. Keiser); Rachel (Mrs. William McHarg); Christian (father of Dr. Plush); Samuel, a farmer; Lara, a miller by trade.

The children of Mr. William McHarg and wife: Mary, still single; Isabelle, wife of William F. Mason, a retired merchant of Saint Paul, Minnesota; John, a farmer of Lower Providence; Rebecca, single, deceased; Anna, single and resides at home; William.

William McHarg was born and reared in Lower Providence township and remained at the old homestead until he was twenty-five years of age. He was married in 1869 and remained on the farm for five years, in Lower Providence township, and then removed to Trappe, where he engaged in general merchandising, which trade he followed for five years. In March he lost his wife and then returned to his old home in Lower Providence township and settled there.

In 1884 he remarried and purchased a farm in the same township at which place he remained for thirteen years. He then sold the farm and removed to Trappe in 1898. He purchased the home where he now resides, which was built by Muhlenberg and which was known as the old Muhlenberg homestead. It was erected in 1743, and built of stone, and is still in a fine state of preservation. In this house Muh1enberg entertained George Washington three days during the Revolutionary war. There is five acres of ground around the home, and he carries on trucking, but has retired from active labor. Politically he is a Republican and has filled the office of school director for six years; he has also filled other minor offices. He is a member of the Lower Providence Presbyterian church and has been a deacon in that church for many years. He is one of the trustees of the Bringhurst estate. He has a great deal of property to look after; he and his brother were the administrators of his father's estate; he is also guardian for the estate of Daniel Kendall, who resided with Mr. McHarg for over two years. Mr. Kendall died September 22, 1903.

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Mr. McHarg married Miss Louisa P. Rutherford (first wife), who was born in Philadelphia, and was the daughter of James and Eliza Rutherford, of Philadelphia, who was a carpenter and building contractor. He died at Norristown. He was a prominent man and a good business man, and was highly respected by all with whom he came in contact. He was a member of the Episcopal church of Philadelphia. His children: Louisa P. (wife of William McHarg); Fanny (Mrs. Joseph Hunsicker), who had one son, James R., a farmer in Worcester township. Fanny died in 1877.

William McHarg was again married in 1884, to Sally Hunsberger, born in Limerick township. She was born December 14, 1851. She was a daughter of Abram and Catherine (Kendall) Hunsberger, both of Montgomery county. He was a son of Isaac and Elizabeth (Keelor) Hunsberger, and his father also was a resident of this county. He came to this country from Germany.

Isaac Hunsberger was a prominent farmer, and in his early days was a school teacher; he also taught music and was a skilled musician. He was a thorough business man. He resided in Limerick for a number of years and still resided there at the time of his death. He was a member of the Reformed church, and was the choir leader.

Their children were: Catherine (Mrs. P. Shafer); Susan (Mrs. Bechtel); Abram (father of Mrs. McHarg); Anna (Mrs. Judge Evans); Mary (Mrs. Jacob Isett); Elizabeth (Mrs. D. Hunsicker); Isaac, went west and his whereabouts not known. Abram remained under the parental roof until he was twenty-five years old; he married and settled in Limerick township.

In 1865 he moved to Trappe and retired from farming. He purchased the old Muhlenberg house, which is now in possession of William McHarg. He attended to his farm of five acres and died in April, 1887. He was a member of the Reformed church and was prominent in church work. In politics he was a Republican, although he did not aspire to public office. His wife survived for six years. She was a daughter of Joseph Kendall, and he a son of Henry Kendall, and he a son of Joseph Kendall, all of English descent. Henry Kendall married Mary Lane, daughter of Edward Lane, of England.

He purchased a large tract of land in Montgonery county, and it was he who presented the ground for the erection of the Episcopal church at Evansburg. He was greatly interested in church work. He owned over twenty-five hundred acres of land. Henry Kendall had but one child: Joseph, who was a farmer and a prominent man. Joseph Kendall's children were Mary, died single; Catherine (mother of Mrs. McHarg); Elizabeth (Mrs. D. Miller); Henry, a farmer; Joseph, a farmer and wheelwright; Daniel, farmer, whom Mr. and Mrs. McHarg took care of for two years; Anna, unmarried.


Mr. and Mrs. William McHarg had one son, John S., born December 31, 1884. Mr. McHarg has given his son the advantages of a good education, sending him to Ursinus College, and prepared him for the business world.

The children born to Abram Hunsberger: Anna, yet single, who resides with Mr. and Mrs. McHarg; Isaac, a farmer; Mary (Mrs. F. Peterman); Catharine (Mrs. Abram Isett, residing near Royersford); Joseph, a minister of the Congregational church; Sally (wife of Mr. McHarg).



(Picture of Joseph W. Groff)

JOSEPH W. GROFF. Jacob Groff (grandfather) was an early settler in Salford township, Montgomery county, Pennsylvania. He was all his life a farmer. He was a man of good business ability and stood high in the community. He married a Miss Heebner. One of his children was Joseph, the father of Joseph Ayr Groff, who

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was born in the old homestead in Salford township. Educated in the ordinary schools, he became a farmer, and later took up the manufacture of linseed oil, in which he was very successful, and accumulated considerable money. In politics he was an earnest Republican, and very active in support of the principles and policy of the party. He married Catharine Wagner, of Upper Salford township, and the couple had twelve children. Joseph W. Groff was one of them.

Joseph W. Groff was born on the farm occupied at the time by his parents in Upper Salford township, November 19, 1821. He was educated in the neighboring schools, and after leaving school engaged in agricultural pursuits, and still later continued the business of his father- the manufacture of linseed oil, and was even more successful in this line of work than was his father. He continued the oil making business until 1867, when he removed to his present home in Souderton, where he has since resided, living a retired life.

He married, in 1848, Hannah Dimmig, daughter of Peter Dimmig, a farmer of Frederick township. She is also living and enjoys good health. The couple had two children, both of whom are deceased- Amelia, who married Jacob Leidy, they having one son; and Diana, who died young.

In politics Mr. Groff is a Republican, although he never sought or held office. He and his wife attend the Reformed church. He is the oldest man in the borough of Souderton, and is highly honored by all who know him.



REV. W. O. FEGELY, pastor of the Trappe Lutheran church, the old historic Muhlenberg church, was born in Lehigh county, Pennsylvania, January 8, 1867. He is the son of Benjamin and Mary A. (Danker) Fegely.

Benjamin Fegely was born in Berks county and his wife was a native of Lehigh county, where they were married. He was reared in Berks county, and after learning the carpenter trade followed it for many years until he purchased a tract of land in Lehigh county. He erected all the buildings and made many improvements during the remainder of his life, which he spent on the farm, and did general farming. He was a man of limited education, but a good conversationalist.

In politics he was a Democrat. He was a man of exceptionally strong constitution and athletic build. He was a kind father and charitable to the needy. He died June 6, 1894, and his wife August 13, 1898. Their children were: Hiram C., a graduate of a normal school, a teacher for eighteen years and later a farmer; Matilda, still unmarried, who lives with her brother, Rev. W. O. Fegely; Susan, died at the age of twenty years; and W. O. Fegely, the subject of this sketch.

Christian Fegely (grandfather) and Catharine Fegely, his wife, were also born in Berks county. He was the third generation of Fegelys since the immigrant came from Germany. Like most of his ancestors he was a farmer and a member of the Lutheran church. Their children were: Peter, John, George, Henry, Benjamin (father), Samuel, Maria, Elizabeth, Anna, Leah.

Charles Danker (maternal grandfather) was born in Berks county and belonged to an old established family, originally from Germany. He was a farmer and a weaver of fine linen and cloth. He was a member of the Reform church. In politics he was a Democrat and held the offices of supervisor and tax collector. He died at the age of sixty-five years. His children were: Mary A. (mother); Caroline (Mrs. Hiram Pecker); Isabella (Mrs. Willoughby Fegely). The two last named are still living.

W. O. Fegely was reared on the farm and attended the common school until he was sent to the Kutztown State Normal School at Kutztown, Pennsylvania, in the year 1886-7 to prepare for college. He entered Muhlenberg College at Allentown, Pennsylvania, in September, 1887, and was graduated in 1890 with the third Honor in the class, delivering the German oration at the commencement exercises. He was a member of the Sophronian Literary Society and of the Alpha Tau Omega fraternity. He became a student at Mount Airy Theological Seminary, Mount Airy, Philadelphia, was graduated in 1893, later passed all the examinations and was ordained a Lutheran minister in June, 1893. He was called to the Lutheran mission at Sayer, Bradford county, Pennsylvania, and remained there until 1898, when he went to Trappe to take charge of Augustus church.

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This church does not take its name from St. Augustus, but is so called in honor of its founder, Herman Augustus Francke. His son, Gotthelf Augustus Francke, was especially influential in securing the acceptance of Henry Melchior Muhlenberg to his call to America. Rev. Muhlenberg was the first regularly ordained pastor in America and preached in Philadelphia, November 25, 1742. After a short time he removed to Trappe, bought a tract of land, and December 12, 1742, preached his first sermon on the floor of a barn. There were a great many members of the Lutheran church who resided in the vicinity, but there was no regularly organized congregation. He established the church and remained as pastor until 1765, when Rev. Voigt was called and Rev. Muhlenberg went to Philadelphia. He saw all the horrors of the Revolutionary war while a pastor at Trappe. He returned to Trappe at a later period and preached his last sermon there December 26, 1784. He died October 7, 1787. The church has always had a good congregation, and at present there are about three hundred and fifty members. Rev. Fegely takes an active part in the Sabbath school work, does much missionary work and belongs to the Lutheran League and the Pastors' Aid Society.

Rev. Fegely has given some attention to lecturing on different subjects, particularly on "Ways and Means," at the different Lutheran churches, and has entertained large audiences. He is a logical writer and gives much attention to education. He is now filling the position of school director for the second term. He was reared a Democrat and still holds those principles.

In 1893 Rev. W. O. Fegely married Miss Anna M. Snyder, born in Bucks county) Pennsylvania, in 1870, being the daughter of Henry H. and Amanda (Reiff) Snyder. Both of her parents were natives of Bucks county, and belonged to an old family of that county. Henry H. Snyder is a farmer and attends market in Philadelphia, as he has done since he was seventeen years of age. He is an active member of the Lutheran church and resides on the homestead where his father was born and where he has always lived. In politics he is a Democrat. His father was George Snyder, a prominent farmer and miller.

George Snyder had the following children: Francis, Henry (father of Mrs. Fegely), Jacob, Mary A. (Mrs. A. Bean), Sarah (Mrs. H. Cressman), and Ephraim, died at the age of ten years. Henry H. Snyder married Amanda Reiff, daughter of Abraham and Sarah Reiff, both natives of Montgomery county, who removed to Bucks county early in life. Abraham Reiff was a shoemaker by trade and later became a merchant. He died in Bucks county in 1884. They were Mennonites.

The children of Mr. and Mrs. Reiff were: Abraham, William, Sarah (Mrs. Brant), Lavina (Mrs. Kober), and Amanda (Mrs. Snyder). Henry H. and Amanda (Reiff) Snyder had the following children: Elmer R., a physician who died in 1898 at the age of thirty-one years; Sally E. married Rev. Charles C. Snyder, a Lutheran minister; and Anna M., the wife of Rev. W. O. Fegely.

Rev. W. O. and Anna M. Fegely have children as follows: Byron S., born July 11, 1895; Grace, born January 25, 1897, died in April, 1897; Alma, born in March, 1899; and Florence E., born August 6, 1902.



ABRAM WALT, a descendant of one of the best known families of the early settlers of Montgomery county, and a veteran of the war for the Union, is a native of Limerick township, where he was born November 23, 1843. He was reared to farm pursuits and received such an education as the ordinary schools of the vicinity afforded at that time. He is the son of Henry S. and Elizabeth (Stauffer) Walt, both his parents being of German descent.

Henry S. Walt (father) was born in Upper Salford township, December 6, 1806. He remained there until his removal to Limerick, at the age of fourteen years. His father died when he was a mere lad, so that his educational facilities were very limited, being confined to a few months each year in early boyhood at neighborhood schools. His presence on the farm was a necessity, winter and summer, as he grew older, he being the chief dependence of a widowed mother. After renting the homestead farm for two years as he grew older, he removed to another belonging to his grandfather Schwenk in Skippack, which he cultivated for ten years.

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In 1842 he purchased a farm in Limerick, removing to it, and there his son Abram, subject of this sketch, was born. This farm he cultivated and greatly improved, devoting a period of thirty years more to its tillage and retiring in 1872.

He married, March 26, 1829, Elizabeth, daughter of Abram Stauffer, of Limerick township, by whom he had the following children: Esther Ann (Mrs. Josiah Evans), Elizabeth (Mrs. Augustus Kehl), Matthew, Ann Jeminia (Mrs. Jeremiah Krause), Henry, Andrew, Sarah Ann, Abram, Mary M. (Mrs. B. F. Dismant), and J. Warren.

Mr. H. S. Walt was a Republican in politics, serving for several years as a school director of his township. For more than a half-century he was identified with St. James Lutheran church as elder, deacon and treasurer. He died in 1888, aged eighty-two years. His wife died two years earlier, passing away in 1886, at the age of eighty-five years. A few years prior to the death of the couple they made their home with their daughter, Mrs. Dismant, where they both died. Andrew Walt (grandfather) resided in Upper Salford township, where the greater part of his life was spent in the occupation of farming. He married Elizabeth, daughter of Abram Schwenk. Their children were: Catharine (Mrs. Jacob Smith), Elizabeth (Mrs. D. Reifsnyder), Abram, Mary (Mrs. George Brandt), Henry S., Samuel, Fanny (Mrs. Abram Anderson), Jacob.

Henry Walt (great-grandfather) was the immigrant. His wife was named Catharine. The couple had several children.

Mrs. Henry S. Walt was the daughter of Abram Stauffer, of Limerick. Mr. Stauffer's children were: Abram, of Hatfield; Elizabeth (mother); Henry (deceased), of Ohio; Hannah (Mrs. H. G. Hunsicker); Mary (Mrs. B. Schlichter); Jemima (Mrs. John Markley).

Of the children of Henry S. Walt, who have been mentioned, Matthew is a farmer in Limerick; Henry is a retired coal dealer and merchant at Batavia, Illinois; Andrew is a farmer of Lower Pottsgrove township; Sarah is unmarried; Jacob W. resides at Parkerford. All are yet living and Henry is very near the old homestead.

Abram Walt was reared in Limerick township, remaining under the parental roof until 1861, when he enlisted in Company C, Fifty-first Pennsylvania Volunteers, going into camp at Harrisburg. On November 16 and 17, the regiment moved to Annapolis, Maryland, and thence sailed for Hatteras, North Carolina, going through that arduous campaign, and, returning, were incorporated with the Army of the Potomac. The regiment was at the battle of Antietam on September 17, 1862, encountering very severe losses. Mr. Walt was wounded in the right leg, but, when he had recovered from his injuries, he went with the regiment to Knoxville, Tennessee, where, the terms of the men having in the meantime expired, the entire regiment re-enlisted for three years or during the war. All came home for a time on furlough. On their return, they became again a part of the Army of the Potomac, serving through the memorable campaign of General Grant, which led up to the capture of Richmond, and the complete overthrow of the Confederacy. Mr. Walt was again wounded in the battle of Cold Harbor, Virginia, June 3, 1864, this time in the hip and groin on the left side. He was also shot through the body. He was discharged from the Carver Hospital, at Washington, D. C., August 12, 1864. Thus his career in the army ended honorably.

He retains as souvenirs of the service he rendered to his country the two minie balls by which he was wounded, one of them having been cut out of his leg, the other having passed through his body and lodged in his haversack. Mr. Walt saw some exceedingly hard service, being in no less than thirty engagements in all, during the time for which he enlisted. He underwent the hardship and exposure which belong to a soldier's life, and while he has never entirely recovered from the effects of the wounds which he suffered and the privations he endured, and has, therefore, never been able to perform hard manual labor, he has not lacked for employment at any time.

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He was employed for ten years by the Philadelphia and Reading Railway Company, in looking after telegraph poles along its lines.

Mr. Walt married in 1877, and later settled on a farm, conducting that for five years, and then selling it and removing to Royersford, where he has been constable and tax collector for a number of years. He engaged in the restaurant business for three years, but his physical condition compelled him to abandon that employment. He served as burgess of Royersford three years, and was a member of the town council six years.

In 1896 he built the commodious residence in which he lives. In addition he owns a double tenant house, and Rockford Hall block, a stone building four stories in height, erected in 1884, renting it for a printing office and stores. He is am active Republican, and takes an interest in all the public questions of the day, as becomes a good citizen. He is a member of Grand Army Post, No. 45, of Phoenixville.

Mr. Walt married Miss Caroline Rambo. She was born May 28, 1844. Mrs. Walt is a daughter of Benjamin and Louisa (Eastburn) Rambo her father being the son of Aaron Rambo, of Swedish descent.

The children of Aaron Rambo: Benjamin (father of Mrs. Abram Walt), Maryann (Mrs. Rogers), Walter, Ross. Louisa Eastburn was a daughter of Samuel Eastburn, the family being originally Friends. The Rambos were members of the Episcopal church.

The children of Benjamin and Louisa Rambo: Mary, who died young, Eliza J. (Mrs. Linsenbigler), Caroline (wife of Mr. Walt), Samuel A., a farmer, Benjamin F., a farmer.

Mr. Walt draws a small pension from the government, but it is not in proportion to his injuries incurred in the service of his country. Mr. and Mrs. Walt have no children. Mrs. Walt is a member of the Episcopal church.



JAMES A. COZENS, residing near Davis Grove, in Horsham township, is a native of Horsham township, where he was born October 11, 1850. He was reared in farm pursuits, and received an education above the average at the public schools of the vicinity and under the tutelage of Professor Hugh Morrow at Hatboro.

He is a son of Samuel and Elizabeth (Long) Cozens, she of Bucks county and he of Chester county Pennsylvania. Samuel's father was also Samuel, of Chester county, and belonged to a family which located early in that county. Later in life he removed to Bucks county, where he died. He was of Welsh descent, and an industrious and successful farmer.

Politically he was a Democrat, but never aspired to more important positions. His children: John, who learned the trade of a stone mason, and became a contractor on public and private buildings, constructed bridges and erected the Bucks County Almshouse; Ann, Mrs. John Thoman; Samuel, father of the subject of this sketch; Elizabeth, Mrs. T. McCombs; Joshua and Benjamin, stone masons; Margaret, Mrs. George Arnold; Mary, Mrs. H. Brooks; James, a stone mason and contractor on public works.

Samuel Cozens, father of James A. Cozens, was reared to farm pursuits, but became later a stone mason, which occupation he followed for some time, but when he married he settled on a farm in Horsham township, giving his entire attention to that pursuit for the rest of his life. His first location was near the Bucks county line.

In 1862 he removed to his Uncle Jonathan Jarrett, Sr.'s farm, and in 1877 he purchased the farm on which his son James now resides. He did not long survive the change, however, as he died October 23, 1878. He was a very active and successful farmer.

In politics he was a Democrat, using his influence in behalf of the candidates of that party. He filled many, township positions. In religious faith he affiliated with the Presbyterian church. His wife survived him and died November 29, 188. She was a daughter of Andrew Long, of Warwick township, Bucks county, Pennsylvania, of an old family in that section of the state. He was a member of the Neshaminy Presbyterian church.

His children: Isabella (Mrs. Ewers); Hannah, died unmarried; Sarah (Mrs. R. C. Bennett); Rebecca (Mrs. F. Rhoads), who died in early womanhood; Henry, by occupation a farmer, but served in the Union army during the rebellion, and died soon

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after his return home from the effects of his service in behalf of his country.

The children of Samuel and Elizabeth Cozens John P., died at the age of twenty-one years; Irvin, born May 14, 1846, resides at the homestead, is a Democrat in politics, has served as assessor of the township for nine years, and also on the election board and in other minor positions; Anna M., unmarried, and is devoted to home interests for herself and two brothers; James A. All three are unmarried. In their father's family of five brothers, John, Samuel and Benjamin married and each had children.

James A. Cozens was reared a farmer, in which occupation he is still engaged with his brother and sister on the homestead. He is among the prominent farmers of Horsham. Like his ancestors he is a Democrat in politics. He has been a school director for a period of twenty-two years, has served as secretary and treasurer for a number of years, and is still in that position. He is also a director in the following institutions National. Bank of Ambler, the Chalfont Mutual Wind and Storm Insurance Company, the Union Library Company of Hatboro, the Hatboro Live Stock Association, the Horsham and Hatboro Turnpike Company, and others. He is also frequently called upon to administer estates and to act as guardian for minors. He conducts public sales, and is an all-round competent business man, whose services are always in demand, as he has the confidence of the community in which he lives.



JOSEPH FORNANCE, a member of the Montgomery county bar, is the son of Joseph Fornance, also a lawyer, who represented this district in Congress from 1839 to 1844. His mother was Anne B. (McKnight) Fornance. He was born in Washington D. C. April 24, 1841. Anthony Forance, great-grandfather of the subject of this sketch, resided a New Castle, Delaware, where he died in 1768. One of his sons, John Fornance, was born at New Castle, in 1766, removed to Philadelphia, afterwards to Montgomery county, Pennsylvania, and married, in 1791, Elizabeth Roberts, daughter of Thomas Roberts, of Blockley township, Philadelphia county, whose ancestors, Welsh Quakers, came to this country in 1684.

They were among the first members of the Friends' Meeting at Merion, whose two-hundredth anniversary was celebrated in 1895. John Fornance died at Norristown in 1845, and was buried in Montgomery cemetery with his wife and three children. His youngest child, Hon. Joseph Fornance (father) was born in Lower Merion township, Montgomery county, Pennsylvania, October 18, 1804, and was educated in the old academy in that township. A certificate of Noah Leeds, principal of the Lower Merion Boarding-School, dated 7th-mo. 11, 1820, states that "Joseph Fornance, son of John Fornance, has attended the school for about two years, mostly studying the mathematics, such branches as algebra, surveying, navigation, and the most useful problems of nautical astronomy, calculated for a seafaring life to which his attention seems to have been drawn."

After leaving that school, Mr. Fornance engaged in the occupation of teaching in the schools of this county. About 1829 he relinquished that profession, and began the study of law in the office of Hon. Philip S. Markley, at Norristown. He was admitted to the bar, August 21, 1832, and in 1834 was elected by the Democrats to represent Montgomery county in the state assembly.

While a member of the legislature, Mr. Fornance took an active part in securing the abolition of public executions, and advocated a compulsory public school system. After serving one term he was defeated in 1836, through the Muhlenberg division in his party.

In 1838 he was elected by the Democrats to Congress to represent what is now the Eighth Pennsylvania District. His duties as a member of the Twenty-sixth Congress were discharged with such ability that he was re-nominated by his party in 1840, and, notwithstanding the excitement that attended the "log cabin, hard cider" campaign of that year which carried the Whig candidates, Harrison and Tyler, into the positions of President and Vice President, Mr. Fornance was triumphantly re-elected. While in Congress he appointed Winfield Scott Hancock, afterwards General Hancock, a cadet at West Point.

Mr. Fornance took an active part in the proceedings of the Twenty-seventh Congress. Speaking of his Congressional career, a writer has said: "Mr. Fornance's two terms in Congress were distinguished by the bitter controversies in reference to the safe keeping of the public funds, and the institution of the independent Treasury by President Van Buren's administration. That famous measure had been rejected at the extra session in 1837, but passed both Houses of Congress at the session of 1840. It was regarded as the great achievement of that Presidential term. During all this exciting period, Mr. Fornance steadily sustained the principles of his party, and truly represented his constituents. His manner was mild, consistent and firm. On retiring from Congress he held, as he always had, a character above reproach for ability and integrity."

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After serving two terms in Congress, Mr. Fornance resumed the practice of law and devoted the remainder of his life to that profession, acquiring a large and responsible practice. In 1851 he was nominated by the Democracy of Montgomery county as a candidate for president judge of the Seventh Judicial District, Bucks county, being then a part of the district, also presented a Democratic candidate. The party strength in the district thus being divided, both Democratic candidates were defeated by the Whig candidate, Hon. Daniel M. Smyser, of Gettysburg.

For a number of years Mr. Fornance served as a member, and as the president of the town council of Norristown, holding that position at his death. He was active in promoting the welfare of the community, and procured the passage of several important laws to lay out and improve the streets. In recognition of his services, one of the streets of the town was named for him after his death.

During his first congressional term, Mr. Fornance formed the acquaintance of Miss Anne B. McKnight, daughter of Captain John D. McKnight, of Alexandria, Virginia, to whom he was married in the city of Washington in 1840. Her ancestors were all Pennsylvanians, her great grandfather, John McKnight, being one of the Scotch-Irish pioneers who settled in the Cumberland Valley, near Chambersburg, in 1735.

Her mother was a daughter of Christian Piercy, a prominent citizen of Philadelphia, and a captain in the Revolutionary war. They had a family of seven children, as follows Joseph, subject of this sketch, a full account of whom is hereinafter given. John, who acquired his early education in Treemount Seminary, Norristown, and afterwards graduated as a civil engineer at the Polytechnic Institute, in Philadelphia, in 1861, at the age of eighteen years, and immediately entered the United States navy as an engineer. He was in active service during the entire Civil war, in the Gulf of Mexico and oil the Atlantic Coast, taking part in several engagements, and was on the United States Steamer "Nyack" at the capture of Fort Fisher, in January, 1865. After the war he served two years in the South Atlantic Squadron.

In 1867 he was assigned to duty on the United States Steamer "Oneida," of the Asiatic Squadron, and after a cruise of three years met a heroic death, on that vessel, when, with her crew of 112 officers and men, she was sunk in a collision with the British iron steamship "Bombay," near Yokohama, Japan, January 24, 1870. At this time he was in the twenty-seventh year of his age. A large monument in memory of these drowned officers and men is erected at Yokohama.

James Fornance, a pupil of Treemount Seminary, afterward graduated from West Point Military Academy in June, 1871. He was then appointed lieutenant in the Thirteenth Infantry, United States army, and remained in active service with that regiment continuously until his death in July, 1898, being then captain of Company F.

His earliest services were on the frontier at different military posts, notably at Red Cloud Agency in 1873. He was with his command in Louisiana during the Reconstruction period, from 1874 to 1879. During the railroad riots of 1877, he served with his command in Kentucky and Pennsylvania, returning afterwards with it to Louisiana. He was afterwards stationed at Fort Wingate, and at Santa Fe, New Mexico. He was instructor at the United States Military Academy at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, for several years until 1894. In that year he served with his company in quelling the Chicago riots.

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From 1894 to 1898 he was senior captain of the Battalion of Infantry at Fort Columbus, Governor's Island, New York Harbor, and from that post he went with his command to the Spanish-American war. Just before the war with Spain began, he had gone to a sanitarium for medical treatment at the urgent request of the surgeon at Governor's Island, but at the threatened breaking out of hostilities, although not yet restored to health, he hurried back to his command at Governor's Island, went with it to Tampa, and thence to Santiago, where he was killed. When in camp at Tampa, and afterwards at Santiago, he was urged to take a staff appointment, but he declined as he considered it his duty to remain with his company.

At the battle of San Juan Hill, Cuba, he led his company in the attack on the Spanish entrenchments. Early in the battle he received a bullet wound through the leg, and was urged to retire to the rear, but with the help of his sergeant, while under fire, he bandaged the wound and continued in command of his company, and for a short time, as his superior officers were killed or disabled, he was in command of the battalion. Soon afterwards, when part way up the hill, he received another wound. A second bullet passed through him, entering at the abdomen and passing out near the spine. He fell on the hillside, mortally wounded. Three of his men stopped to care for him, but he, thinking every man was needed in the desperate attack, ordered them to rejoin the firing line. His command kept on, advancing up the hill, and was among the first to enter the Spanish redoubt. He lay where he fell, was gathered in with the wounded after the battle, and was taken to the field hospital, where he died. He was wrapped in a blanket, and buried on the battle field in a pit with nine other bodies.

He was married, in 1876, at Baton Rouge, Louisiana, to Fannie, daughter of Oscar Barbee, Esq., of that city. They had four children. Three of their children died and were buried in the United States Military cemetery at Baton Rouge. His wife afterward died at Fort Columbus, Governor's Island, New York, 1894. He took her body to Baton Rouge, and buried her by their children. When the government sent his body home from Cuba, it was buried at Baton Rouge, beside his wife and children. His only surviving child is Ione B. Fornance.

Since his death the War Department has named, in his honor, Battery Fornance, at Fort Fremont, South Carolina. Thomas Fornance, educated at Treemount Seminary, emigrated to the West, and became sheriff of Wood county, Wisconsin, and afterwards was a resident of Tacoma, Washington. Elizabeth, widow of Edward Price Jones, of Lower Merion, Montgomery county, now residing with her children at Wissahickon, Philadelphia. Catherine, widow of Major Frank H. Edmunds, of the First United States Infantry, whose father, Hon. Newton Edmunds, was at one time Governor of Dakota Territory. At the close of the war with Spain, Major Edmunds, being on the staff of General Fitzhugh Lee, was stationed near Havana, where both he and his wife were attacked by yellow fever, from which he died in a few days, June 18, 1900. His body was sent to Washington, and was buried in the National cemetery at Arlington. His wife recovered, and now lives with her children in New York.

At the death of Major Edmunds, President McKinley appointed his son, Kinzie, a cadet at West Point, where he graduated in June, 1904. He is now a lieutenant in the United States army. Mary, unmarried, is a graduate from the Library Department of Drexel Institute, Philadelphia, and is engaged in library work. Hon. Joseph Fornance died at his home in Norristown, November 24, 1852, in the forty-eighth year of his age. His widow survived him nearly forty years. Both were buried in Montgomery cemetery.

Joseph Fornance, the eldest child of Hon. Joseph and Anne B. Fornance, was reared in Norristown, and attended the public schools of that borough, entering Treemount Seminary, and pursuing special studies there under the instruction of the Rev. Samuel Aaron, a teacher of wide reputation. On relinquishing school studies he taught school for several years.

Afterwards for a short time he was employed as a clerk in the office of the United States District Court in Philadelphia. He then decided to study law, and entered as a law student the office of Gilbert Rodman Fox, Esq., a noted member of the Norristown bar. Passing the usual examination, he was admitted to the bar of Montgomery county, April 12, 1866, and at once began the practice of law.

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In 1877 he removed to St. Louis, Missouri, with a view of locating permanently in that city, but after a trial of one year returned to Norristown, where he has ever since resided, engaged in the practice of law. He has met with very gratifying success, and has achieved an excellent reputation as a lawyer. Politically he is a Democrat, but adhered to sound money principles during the temporary deviation of the party, from good financial ideas, involved in the nomination of William J. Bryan for the Presidency in 1896 and again in 1900. Mr. Fornance has taken some interest in local politics, though not in any sense an office seeker. He is an earnest advocate of good local government, and exerts his influence in its favor.

Mr. Fornance has for a score of years been deeply interested in matters relating to local history. He took a very prominent part, in 1884, in the celebration of the hundredth anniversary of the organization of the county of Montgomery, being president of the Centennial Association which made the celebration so great a success from first to last. Much of the success achieved on that occasion was due to his effective labors and his skill in organizing those interested for the proper commemoration of the event after the lapse of a hundred years. It was also a financial success, there being after the accounts were closed a balance of twelve hundred dollars, which was turned over to the Historical Society of Montgomery county, Pennsylvania, the celebration having been planned and executed under the auspices of that organization, and the surplus fund so realized ultimately formed the nucleus of the fund used to purchase the substantial building known as Historical Hall for a permanent home for the Historical Society. Mr. Fornance is and has been for a number of years the honored president of that society, laboring for its best interests in every way.

He, as chairman of the Publication Committee, has done a large share of the work of editing two handsome volumes of "Historical Sketches", one of them published in 1895, the other in 1900. His influence has been employed to harmonize all elements in the Society, and to develop its work along practical lines, his efforts and those of his coadjutors being rewarded with a considerable measure of success.

Mr. Fornance married, February 22, 1881, Ellen, daughter of Colonel Thomas P. and Sarah Ann (Leedom) Knox. Their children: Joseph Knox, born September 16, 1882; Eleanor, born November 15, 1883, died July 10, 1893; Lois, born October 28, 1885, now a student at Swarthmore College. Joseph Knox Fornance is a graduate of Princeton University, and is now studying law under his father at Norristown.

The Knox family are old residents of Montgomery county, being of Scotch-Irish descent. David Knox, born in 1700, great-great-grandfather of Mrs. Fornance, came from County Antrim, Ireland, to America, about 1732, with his wife and son Andrew.

He settled at what for over one hundred years was the family homestead, situated partly in Whitpain and partly in Norriton township, the farm buildings being located in Whitpain township, and died there in 1780. His son, Andrew, Esq., the father of a rising family lived there at the time of the outbreak of the Revolutionary war. His active patriotism was obnoxious to the neighboring Tories, who tried to capture him to deliver him to the British. Assisted by some British soldiers, sent from Philadelphia by General Howe, they attacked his house by night. He defended himself and his home bravely until some patriotic neighbors came to his assistance, and the Tories were forced to retire. Two of the attacking Tories were afterwards captured and hanged, and a third made his escape to Canada. Andrew died at the Knox homestead in 1807. His son, Andrew, born there in 1773, removed when a young man to Savannah, Georgia, where in 1803 he married Rebecca, widow of John Pray, and a daughter of Captain

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Thomas Rice. Thomas Pope Knox, their son, and the father of Mrs. Fornance, was born at Savannah, July 8, 1809. In 1821 the family removed to Norristown, purchased from the estate of General Andrew Porter, the farm in Norristown which is the present residence of Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Fornance, and lived there. Andrew Knox died there in, 1844, and his wife in 1858. Colonel Thomas P. Knox grew to manhood on this farm which afterwards descended to him. He was educated at the Norristown Academy, and later at Rutgers College, New Jersey, but decided to become a farmer, which occupation he pursued successfully throughout his life. In 1840 he married Sarah Ann, daughter of Dr. Joseph and Eleanor (Conover) Leedom, of Plymouth Meeting Montgomery county. Dr. Leedom was a descendant of Richard Leedom, of Southampton, Bucks county, Pennsylvania, who emigrated from Micklefield, England, in 1712. Eleanor Conover, of Upper Freehold, New Jersey, was descended from Wolfert Gerretson Van Couwenhoven, of Amersfort, Utrecht, Holland, who emigrated in 1630, and settled on Manhattan Island, New York city. Wolfert's great-grandson, Peter Van Covenhoven, great-grandfather of Mrs. Leedom, purchased with others in 1699, one thousand acres of land in Monmouth county, New Jersey, and settled there. In time the family name changed to Conover.

Mr. and Mrs. Thomas P. Knox had four children: Isabella, Joseph, Leedom, Ellen, and Andrew- all of whom died in early childhood except Mrs. Fornance. Mrs. Thomas P. Knox died February 4, 1846. Colonel Knox was a Democrat in politics, and was elected to the state senate in 1855. During Governor Bigler's administration, he was appointed Governor's aid with the rank of Colonel, whence he derived his military title. He was president of the Pennsylvania Agricultural Society, and was at one time a justice of the peace in Norriton township, before the limits of the borough of Norristown were extended to include the farm. He died at Selma Farm, May 29, 1879, universally respected, in the seventieth year of his age.

The residence of Mr. and Mrs. Fornance has long been known as Selma Farm. The name Selma was given to the property by General Andrew Porter, of Revolutionary fame, who bought it in 1786. He erected the present dwelling house there. In 1809 his appointment as surveyor general of Pennsylvania required his removal to Harrisburg, where he lived until his death in 1813, and after his death his widow and family returned to this farm and lived there seven years. His executor sold it to Andrew Knox in 1822. It was then in Norriton township, and contained about 12o acres. Among General Porter's children born on this place were David Rittenhouse, afterwards governor of Pennsylvania; James M., afterwards secretary of war; and George B., afterwards governor of Michigan. In his will, proved at Harrisburg, General Porter mentions several of his children as "born at Selma".

When the Knox family became owners of this property, they changed its name to Currant Hill Plantation, but the new name did not suit, so they resumed the use of the old name of Selma which it has borne ever since. The name of Selma street originates from the name of the farm, through which it was afterwards laid. In 1853 Norristown was enlarged, and Selma Farm was all brought within the borough limits. Marshall street was laid out through it, and afterwards other streets were opened. In 1854 Colonel Knox sold from it to Messrs. Hartranft, Boyer & Evans about forty acres, now bounded by Main, Oak, Stanbridge and Buttonwood streets. The purchasers divided their tract into building lots and sold them. The tract is now almost entirely covered with houses, many of them handsome dwellings.

In 1902 Mr. and Mrs. Fornance sold from the remaining land a tract of about twenty-two acres, being the portion bounded by Main, Marshall, Buttonwood and Selma streets, to the Hamilton Terrace Company, composed of several enterprising Norristown business men. The purchaser has opened and graded the streets, platted the land into building lots, and erected on about one-third of the purchase over fifty handsome dwellings, including the large Apartment House at the corner of Main and Hamilton streets.

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LOUIS R. SHOEMAKER, a well-known resident of Plymouth township, was born December 22, 1851. He is the son of Peter and Jane (Davis) Shoemaker.

John Shoemaker (grandfather) was born in Hickorytown in 1772, and died in 1855. He married Jane Davis, and their children were: Peter; Ann, married Jacob Yerkes, and lives in the west; Mercy, married Reuben Yerkes, and lives in Plymouth township; Rachel, married George Ward, and lives in Salem, New Jersey; Hannah, married Reuben Yerkes; Rebecca, married Joey Ritter; Ellwood, deceased; Mary, deceased; and Jane.

Peter Shoemaker (father), the eldest son of John Shoemaker, was born in 1813 in Plymouth township, and died April 24, 1859. He was a farmer all his life. He married Jane Davis, daughter of John and Esther (Whiteman) Davis, Their children: John D., born December 2, 1845, died May 13, 1864; Rachel W., born December 2, 1847; George W., born October 31, 1849, died July 25, 1851; Louis R.; Joseph, born August 28, 1854; Hannah, born October 6, 1856, married John F. Comley. Rachel W. married Dr. Francis Bilderback, and resides in Salem, New Jersey.

Their children are: Virginia, Alpheus, Edgar and Joseph (deceased). Virginia married George Bowen and has two children: Francis and Thomas. Joseph, son of Peter Shoemaker, married Catharine Kolb. Their children are: Joseph, Catherine, Nettie, Julia, Davis, Emaline, Hannah. Peter Shoemaker attended the township school and learned the trade of a stone mason. He engaged in building with his father. After his marriage he went to live on the farm now owned by Luken and Yerkes, where he died. He was a member of the Society of Friends, and is buried at Plymouth Meeting.

Louis R. Shoemaker attended Eight Square school in Plymouth township, Oak Street school, Norristown, and also John Lock's school. After leaving school he became a drover and a farmer, and has been so employed ever since, having dealt in cattle extensively. He resides on a part of the old John Davis property. In politics he is a Republican.

April 26, 1894, Louis R. Shoemaker married Edna M. Freas, of Plymouth, daughter of Henry H. and Sarah E. (Marple) Freas. Their children are: John D., born March 8, 1896, died July 2, 1896; Ruth E. Born July 2, 1897; Laura F., born November 24, 1899; Louis R., born November 5, 1902.

Henry H. Freas (father of Mrs. Shoemaker) was born August 16, 1840, in Plymouth township, being the son of John D. and Anna (Fisher) Freas. John D. Freas, the father, was a wheelwright in Plymouth township all his life.

He married Anna Fisher. Their children: Mary Elizabeth (deceased), married George Batdorf, and lived in Illinois. Henry M. (father of Mrs. Shoemaker) died May 12, 1902. Daniel married Margaret Hoffman, and resides in Conshohocken. George W., married Margaret Boggs, and they reside in Whitemarsh. Alvinza, Sara Ann, married Daniel Freas, and they reside in Conshohocken. Benjamin Franklin (deceased), married Martha Slingluff, and resided in Conshohocken. Clara, married Henry Rex (deceased), and resides in Conshohocken. Sybelle, married (first husband) Milton Heffalfinger, and (second husband) Samuel Wood. Howard, resides in Norristown.

Henry H. Freas (father of Mrs. Shoemaker) attended the Eight Square school. After finishing his schooling he worked in the saw mill at Cedar Grove, and later in a quarry in the same locality. He then removed to the Jackson Rapine farm, where he lived until his death. He was a Democrat in politics, and in religious faith a Methodist. He was a member of the Order of Odd Fellows. In 1865 Henry H. Freas married Sarah Marple, daughter of Enoch and Elizabeth Marple.

Their children: Laura S. and Edna M. Enoch Marple, father of Mrs. Henry H. Freas, was a farmer in Plymouth township. His father's name was David and his mother's maiden name was Mary Corson. He was a school director, elected on the Democratic ticket.

He married (first wife) Mary Hallman, and they had three children; David, Hallman and Eliza. His second wife's name was Elizabeth Hart. Their children: Mary (deceased), married David Lysinger, John (deceased), married (first wife) Mary Clime (deceased), and (second wife) Rosannah Hipple (deceased). Jacob H. (deceased), married Sarah Fisher, who resides in Hickorytown. Reuben H. (deceased), married Clara Meleher, who lives in Gwynedd. Sarah, wife of Henry H. Freas. Zieber H., married Amanda Gouck, and resides in Upper Gwynedd. Hannah Bertha, married (first) Benjamin Ambler, and (second) Jeremiah Graham (deceased); she lives in Norristown.

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MRS. JOANNA HALL, widow of Hibberd Hall, is the daughter of William and Mary (Pugh) Pugh, of no kin. She is a native of Radnor township, Delaware county, Pennsylvania, where her parents were able farmers. They were both descended from old families of Friends, or Quakers. For many years she was a resident of Plymouth Meeting, Montgomery county, Pennsylvania, where her husband and his brother, Jesse Hall, both deceased, were merchants.

Maris Hall, father of Hibberd Hall, was a native of Willistown, Chester, county, Pennsylvania, where he was born about 1800. He was reared on a farm and educated in neighboring schools. On reaching manhood he engaged in agricultural pursuits until his death. In religious faith he was a member of the Society of Friends. In politics he was a Whig and Republican, taking an active interest in the great national questions of the day. He married Sarah Hibberd, by whom he had the following children: Jesse, Hibberd, Barclay, Clarkson, Susan and Hannah, the last named dying young. The family were of English descent.

Hibberd Hall, husband of Joanna Hall, was born and reared on the Willistown farm, and was educated in the schools of the vicinity. On reaching manhood he engaged in mercantile business in Conshohocken, where he continued a few years, and then removed to Radnor township, where he married, he having met his future wife while he was engaged in teaching school in that neighborhood, remaining there five years, and being employed in keeping a country store. He then removed to Plymouth Meeting, near Norristown, engaging in storekeeping, and dying 10 mo. 22, 1865, from an attack of typhoid fever, at the age of thirty-eight years.

The couple had three children, as follows: J. Barclay, a druggist, for many years located in Norristown, but more recently living in Philadelphia; he married Elizabeth Young, of Plymouth Meeting; Sarah, married Lafayette Ross, a well known merchant doing business on Main street, Norristown; Dr. William M., a leading physician of Conshohocken. Hibberd Hall was a staunch Republican, and an active worker in behalf of party interests, speaking in advocacy of its principles. He affiliated with the Society of, Friends, of which his ancestors had been members for many generations. He was a man of ability and integrity, whose life corresponded with his religious profession, and he was highly respected by all who knew him.



DR. WILLIAM M. HALL, second child of Hibberd and Joanna (Pugh) Hall was born at Radnor, Delaware county, Pennsylvania, April 27, 1860. His early mental training was obtained in the schools of Philadelphia; he next entered the State Normal School at West Chester, Pennsylvania, and upon graduating from that institution, having decided to take up the study of medicine, he entered the Jefferson Medical College at Philadelphia, and graduated from this well known institution on April 2, 1883.

He at once took up the practice of his profession with Dr. J. K. Reid, a successful and well known practicing physician of Conshohocken, Montgomery county, Pennsylvania. In 1888 Dr. Hall purchased the property at the corner of Third avenue and Fayette street, from his preceptor, Dr. Reid, and has since had a successful career at the practice of his profession, many of his patients being of the best families of the borough. In addition to the many and varied duties of his practice, Dr. Hall takes an active interest in all enterprises that tend toward the good of his chosen profession and the well being of his fellow citizens. He is a member of the Montgomery County Medical Society and other organizations of his profession. Politically Dr. Hall is a supporter of the principles of the Republican party, and has always taken an interest in local affairs, but has not sought political preferment. He is a director of the First National Bank of Conshohocken, and was school director for one term.

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Dr. Hall was married June 15, 1892, to Ida E. Gilbert, born July 17, 1875, a daughter of Daniel and Annie (Biddle) Gilbert of Conshohocken, and to this marriage was born one daughter, Edna M. Hall, born July 5, 1894.



(Benjamin D. Wolford and family.)

BENJAMIN D. WOLFORD. John Wolford, grandfather of the subject of this sketch, was one of the early residents of Marlborough township, Montgomery county, Pennsylvania, and was educated in such schools as were available at that time. On completing his meagre attendance at school he engaged in the then almost universal pursuit of farming, to which he adhered throughout life. He married, and reared a family, among his children being Samuel.

Samuel Wolford (father) was a native of Marlborough township, born on the family homestead, and educated in the usual manner. He learned the trade of shoemaking and followed that occupation for a number of years, but in his later years he turned his attention to the occupation of farming. In politics he was an old school Democrat, and held the positions of school director and supervisor. He never aspired, however, to anything more lucrative in the way of official position. In religious faith he was a member of the German Reformed church. He is now deceased. He married Miss Catharine Daub, who is also deceased. She was a daughter of Jacob Daub, a well known farmer of Marlborough township. The couple had the following children: George, deceased; Amanda, Caroline, Henry, William, Frank, Amelia, and Benjamin D.

Benjamin D. Wolford was born on the home farm in Marlborough, July 9, 1849. He was educated in the public schools of Upper Salford township to which the family had removed in 1853. After completing his school studies he learned the trade of a tinsmith at Horaceville, with his brother, and remained there until 1872, when he removed to Souderton, which borough is still his home. He engaged in the tinsmith and plumbing business, and has been very successful in business, carrying it on to the present time.

Mr. Wolford married, in 1875, Miss Hannah Leidy, daughter of Jacob C. Leidy, a farmer of Hilltown township, Bucks county, Pennsylvania. The children of Mr. and Mrs. Wolford: Alice, who married Gurney Blank, they having two children, Elura and Lynford; Warren, who is unmarried, as are his brother and sister Charles and Mary. Mr. Wolford is a Democrat in politics, and is one of the party workers in the borough of Souderton. He has served a term of three years in town council, and has been school director for three terms. He is a member of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows. He and his family attend the German Reformed church. Mr. Wolford is an enterprising and useful citizen of Souderton, and is thoroughly respected by the community in which he lives.



HARRY COMLY, one of the most progressive and prosperous farmers in that section of Montgomery county, being esteemed for his many admirable qualities, was born at Blue Bell, in Whitpain township, October 25, 1868. He is the son of Alfred and Elizabeth (Shaw) Comly. The Comlys are an old family of English ancestry, and the family were members of the Society of Friends. Some of its members were prominent in the history of the Society.

Alfred Comly (father) was a native of Gwynedd township, Montgomery county, Pennsylvania, where he was born June 8, 1839. He was reared on a farm, being engaged all his life in agricultural pursuits. He was educa

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life. The farm contains thirty-five acres of land. The children of Alfred and Elizabeth Comly: Sallie, deceased; Harry, subject of this sketch; Jonas and Mary, both deceased.

Harry Comly was educated at the Friends' School at Gwynedd, where he was a pupil of Ellwood Roberts and other well-known teachers. He also attended Gwynedd public school. From early boyhood he has. been engaged in agricultural pursuits. In 1886 he purchased from his father the farm which he now occupies, and has brought it to a high state of cultivation. He is a practical farmer, all his surroundings being of a kind calculated to indicate thrift and industry. Mr. Comly married at Lansdale, December 21, 1898, Emma Moyer, a daughter of William and Amanda (Cassel) Moyer. She was born December 1, 1881. Her father is deceased, and her mother survives and resides at Hatfield, Pennsylvania. Mr. and Mrs. Comly have no children. Mr. Comly attends Friends' Meeting. The family of Mrs. Comly attend the Reformed church.



ISRAEL M. ERB, one of the best known farmers in Lower Pottsgrove township, was born in the same township in which he now resides, in 1831. He is the son of Jacob and Elizabeth Miller) Erb, both now deceased.

Jacob Erb (father) was born on the farm where he always lived and where his son Israel M. was born and now lives. He and his wife were members of the Lutheran church in New Haven township, and they are buried in the churchyard of that church. They passed a very quiet life, being absorbed in their farm and in their church. Jacob Erb was a Democrat in politics.

He had one of the first and finest apple distilleries in the country on the farm. Jacob Erb died in 1864, at the age of seventy-three years, and his wife in 1877, at the age of eighty-five years.

Their children were: Maria, deceased, who was the wife of James Missimer; Leah, deceased who married Isaac Shalpop, also deceased; Rebecca, who married Louis Bickel, of Pottstown; Hannah, whose first husband was Peter Hendricks, and her second husband was Isaac Hatfield; Elizabeth, who married Conrad Schnell, of Sanatoga, Pennsylvania; Sarah, who married Isaac Geist, of Pottstown; Solomon, deceased; Jacob F., deceased; and Israel M. who resides at Sanatoga, Pennsylvania.

The grandfather of Jacob Erb was Casper Erb. The family received word from Europe that a large estate in Wittenburg, Germany, was left to Casper Erb or his wife. On account of the perilous voyage across the ocean at that time, George Erb did not return to Europe and the estate has never been settled. At the present time, however, it is being attended to. George Erb, Sr., the father of this George Erb, came to America in 1756, but died shortly after his arrival in this country.

Israel M. and Rachel Erb, his wife, lived and reared their children on the farm which has been in the family for so many generations. It is one of the finest in Pottsgrove township, and within its limits there is a spring of which the output is several thousand gallons daily, and the water from which is remarkably good. Mr. Erb has recently rebuilt the home, making it much larger and more beautiful. The land is rich and productive. Mr. Erb is a member of the Patrons of Husbandry. He was school director for six years, and auditor for six years. He has also been treasurer of the Patrons of Husbandry since 1873, and treasurer of the Sunday-school for thirty years. Mrs. Rachel Erb died February 12, 1899, at the age of sixty-eight years.

Mr. and Mrs. Erb had eight children, six now living, as follows: Albert B., who resides in Texas where he is teaching school. Mary, who married Krause, of Pottstown. Horace, who resides in Lehigh county, where he is a practicing physician. George, who resides at home. Emma, who married William H. Wagner, and resides in New Hanover township, where her husband is a farmer. Annie, who married George C. Schmidt, of Philadelphia. Annie died April 7, 1904, aged thirty-three years.

Mr. Israel Erb owns a fine home in Pottstown, at 254 Walnut street, where he resides, and he has what he calls a centennial home, it having been built in the year 1876. He has deeds in his possession covering 22,377* acres of land in Montgomery county; 200 acres was sold to George Erb in 1800, for the sum of 1000 pounds. This 22,377 acres of land is in one tract in Hanover township, Philadelphia county, and was owned in 1725 by John Henry Sprogel at a cost of 50 pounds. [*Ed note: Believe does not mean ownership of this land, just copies of the deeds.]

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ISAAC R. HECKLER, one of the best known and most prosperous farmers of Montgomery township, Montgomery county, Pennsylvania, was born in Lower Salford township, February 14, 1837, son of Michael and Hannah (Rittenhouse) Heckler.

The Heckler family are of German origin, having emigrated from the province of Alsace Lorraine. George Heckler, the progenitor of the family in America, and the only member of it who came to the western continent, was a son of Michael Heckler. He was born in Alsace, then a French province, in 1736.

He came to America when he was seventeen years of age, being given a passage for the new world by the captain of a sailing vessel, who after reaching Philadelphia sold him to a farmer in Chester county, Pennsylvania, for a sum of money equivalent to his passage money, for which he was to give the farmer his services for three years. At the completion of this period he left Chester county and located in Skippack township, Montgomery county, where he engaged with a farmer named Freed. Several years later he married the daughter of Freed, and after his father-in-law's death purchased the farm, where he resided until his death. Peter, his son, and grandfather of Isaac R. Heckler, the subject of this sketch, was born at Skippack, but the greater part of his life was spent in Lower Salford township. He was engaged in agricultural pursuits. He married Miss Detwiler, and their children were: Jacob, Henry, Abraham, Joseph, Christiana, Michael, Sarah and David, all now deceased.

Michael Heckler (father) was born in Lower Salford township in 1813. He spent his boyhood days on the homestead farm. In early manhood he purchased a small farm in Montgomery township, where he resided until 1864, when he sold it and resided with his son, Isaac R., for about three years. He then purchased a small farm in Hatfield township, which he soon afterwards sold and purchased another in Worcester township.

A few years later he sold the Worcester property and purchased six acres of land in Hatfield township. About three years later, his wife having died in the meantime, he sold the small farm and resided again with his son Isaac for three years. He afterwards resided with his daughter, Mrs. Herman, until his death in January, 1896. The children of Michael Heckler: Isaac R., subject of this sketch: Aaron, who died in childhood; Matthias, died in childhood; Sarah, wife of Charles Rhinbold, residing in Kalamazoo, Michigan; Franklin and Mary, both deceased.

Isaac R. Heckler obtained such a limited education as was to be had in the schools of the neighborhood in his youth. After leaving school he spent four years at the carpenter trade. At the age of twenty-two he began working for farmers, and three years later entered into an agreement with his father-in-law, Jacob M. Swartley, to manage his farm on shares. This agreement continued in force until 1869. He then purchased a farm of 113 acres on the state road, on which he now resides with his son Mahlon. This farm, together with one of seventy acres on the opposite side of the state road which he purchased in 1880, is one of the finest and most productive in that section of Montgomery county. It has been brought to a high state of cultivation through his industry and energy. The smaller farm is occupied by his son-in-law, Elmer Hespel, a very energetic and successful farmer. In politics

Mr. Heckler is a Republican, but he is not a seeker for office. The family were originally Mennonites, but Mr. Heckler's family attend the Lutheran or Methodist churches.

Isaac Heckler married, October 16, 1861, Susan Swartley, daughter of. Jacob M. and Annie (Ruth) Swartley, who was born in New Britain township, Ducks county, May 26, 1843. Their children: Annie, born September 6, 1862, married Jesse Cassel; Mahlon, born October 20, 1865; Hannah, born September 12, 1868, wife of Charles Buck; Laura, born July 10, 1872, wife of Charles Shepherd; Susan, born in September, 1877, wife of Eliner Hespel.

Mahlon Heckler, son of Isaac R. Heckler, was born on the homestead farm in Montgomery township. He was educated at Montgomery Square public school, at D. Levin Coleman's school at Centre Square, and at that of Professor Samuel U. Brunner, the North Wales Academy and School of Business. Since early boyhood he has been engaged in farm pursuits. He married at Camden, New Jersey, October 29, 1889, Emma Boehner, daughter of Henry and Lena Boehner.

They have six children, as follows: Bertha May, William B., Lawrence, Isaac, Mahlon and Laura. In his political views, Mr. Heckler is, like his father, a Republican.



BENJAMIN F. PENROSE, of Ogontz, Pennsylvania, belongs to an old family of Friends long domiciled at or near Richland (Quakertown), Bucks county, Pennsylvania. The family are of English origin, although the immigrant ancestor came to this country from Ireland. Robert Penrose, son of Robert and Jane Penrose, born in Yorkshire, England, removed to Ireland, and in 1669 married Anna Russell, who bore him three children. Their son Robert, born in Blackane in 1670, in 1695 married Mary Clayton, and they were the parents of thirteen children. With part of their family Robert and Mary Penrose came to Pennsylvania in 1717. A son Robert, born in 1697, followed the others of the family to America. He married, in 1731, Mary Heacock, and their third child, John, married Ann, daughter of John and Martha Roberts. John Roberts was the son of Thomas Roberts, a pioneer in the settlement of Richland (now Quakertown), and Martha, his wife, was the daughter of Edward Roberts, one of the earliest settlers in the same vicinity. The two families intermarried so frequently that they have become practically one.

John and Ann (Roberts) Penrose married 11 mo. 8, 1764, and ten children were born to them, of whom the youngest son, Evan, born 4 mo. 2, 1782, married, 4 mo. 23, 1807, Rebecca Ball. They were the grandparents of Benjamin F. Penrose. Aaron Penrose (father) married, 3 mo. 22, 1838, Maryetta Foulke. Their children are: Benjamin F., mentioned hereinafter; Caroline, who became the wife of David J. Ambler; and Rebecca, who became the wife of Lewis Ambler.

Benjamin F. Penrose was born in Milford township; May 25, 1839. He was educated in the Friends' School at Quakertown, and after completing his studies continued on his father's farm until 1877, when he removed to Montgomery county, Pennsylvania, locating on a farm of fifty acres which he cultivated until 1893, when he relinquished active farming pursuits. He has taken an active part in county and township affairs for many years, and serves as director of the Ambler National hank. He was elected jury commissioner, and served a term in that position very acceptably. In the fall of 1902 he was elected to the important and responsible office of county commissioner on the Republican ticket, his associates in the board being Daniel M. Anders and John S. Sherlmire.

On this board of commissioners devolved the task of completing the new Montgomery county court house, which structure was finished in the spring of 1904, the building being dedicated with appropriate ceremonies on May 24 of that year. This herculean task was completed to the satisfaction of all concerned, Mr. Penrose assuming his full share of the responsibility and labor connected therewith. On all sides were heard expressions of approval at the elegance and convenience of the building, which may be considered worthy of the great county of Montgomery, and a credit to the board of commissioners which planned it, as well as to that under whose auspices it was completed.

Mr. Penrose is an active member of the Society of Friends, as have been his ancestors for many generations, and attends Abington Meeting Being a man of good business ability, he holds many appointments in the Philadelphia Yearly Meetings of the Society of Friends. He enjoys the esteem and confidence of the community in which he lives, few men hero so widely known or so highly respected.

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On March 4, 1874, Mr. Penrose married Alice J. Thomson, daughter of John and Caroline Jones Thomson. Mrs. Penrose died October 9, 1903. He still resides at the homestead, which is situated on Cedar Road, near Ogontz, Pennsylvania.



(Picture of William Willauer)

WILLIAM WILLAUER, a contractor of Pottstown, was born in Union township, Berks county, Pennsylvania, December 31, 1839. He is the son of Peter and Margaret (Weal) Willauer. Peter Willauer (father) was a native of Pennsylvania and during the latter part of his life removed from Berks to Chester county, and later to Montgomery county, where he died in 1887, aged seventy-six years, his remains being interred at Shingels church, Chester county. He was employed in manual labor. Margaret (Weal) Willauer died in 1846 and Peter Willauer afterward married Mary Moser. They had one child who died at the age of one year. He was a member of the German Reformed church. He was supervisor of North Carpenter township, Chester county, for twenty-eight years. Peter and Margaret (Weal) Willauer had thirteen children, seven sons and six daughters, two of whom are now living: John Willauer, of Philadelphia; and William Willauer.

Peter Willauer (grandfather) was born in Pennsylvania and followed various pursuits. He died at an advanced age, leaving a large family.

William Willauer removed with his parents to Chester county when he was about four years of age, and grew to manhood in that county. After coming of age he returned to the county where he was born. He enlisted in the Fourth Pennsylvania Regiment, Captain Brooke commanding the company. He re-enlisted in the Sixth Pennsylvania Cavalry, serving three years and one month, holding the rank of a non-commissioned officer. He participated in the battles of Hanna Court House, Antietam, Gettysburg, the Wilderness and other important battles and skirmishes. After the war was over he returned to his home and worked in the rolling mill at Birdsboro.

On July 3, 1866, William Willauer married Miss Emma Rotz, daughter of George and Rebecca (Stubblebine) Rotz. They had three children: George W. married Ellen Altenderfer, and is bookkeeper and clerk for his father; Mary Elizabeth married Ion Lachman; Irene died when she was fourteen months and a few days old. Mr. and Mrs. Willauer are members of the Methodist Episcopal church.

Mr. Willauer belongs to Neversink Lodge, Independent Order of Odd Fellows, of Birdsboro, and M. E. Richards Post, Grand Army of the Republic. Politically he is independent in his view.

Mr. Willauer removed to Pottstown April 4, 1870, and has lived there ever since. He owns his residence at No. 529 King street, and also other business and residence property of the borough. He takes contracts for railroads and has been instrumental in building successfully several lines of railroad, and has constructed large reservoirs, among others the Pottstown reservoir. He also was employed with the New York Aqueduct Company for four years.

William Willauer received only a common school education and is a self-made man. He helped on the farm when a boy, being bound out until he was sixteen years of age. He afterwards worked in the rolling mills for a number of years. His experiences have been varied, and he has traveled much while attending to his business.

In 1894 he was engaged in constructing a railroad in the San Domingo islands.



REV. HARVEY SHEAFE FISHER, S. T. B., has been the rector of St. John's Church, Norristown, Pennsylvania, since the 27th of November, 1898. St. John's parish is the oldest church organization in the borough of Norristown and received its charter from the supreme court of the state on January 11, 1813.

The original vestry mentioned in the charter are the following well-known Montgomery county men: Francis Swaine, Bird Wilson, Levi Pawling, Henry Freedley, Matthias Holstein, John Zeber, George W. Holstein.

The present church edifice, although modernized and enriched by improvements and alterations, is still essentially the same building which

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was completed in 1815, and consecrated by the first Bishop of Pennsylvania, the Rt. Rev. William White, D. D. The autograph letter of consecration from Bishop White is one of the most highly valued treasures of the parish. The rectors of S. John's from its organization to the present time have been: The Rev. Jehu Curtis Clay, 1815-1817; Rev. Thomas P. May, 1817-1819; Rev. Bird Wilson, 1819-1822; Rev. Jehu Curtis Clay, 1822-1832; Rev. John Reynolds, 1832-1838; Rev. Nathan Stem, 1839-1859; Rev. John Woart, 1860-1863; Rev. Eaton W. Maxcy, 1864-1867; Rev. George W. Brown, 1867-1869; Rev. Charles E. McIlvaine, 1869-1872; Rev. Isaac Gibson, 1872-1898; Rev. Harvey S. Fisher, 1898. The Rev. Mr. Fisher is therefore the twelfth rector of this historic parish.

Mr. Fisher was born in Pottsville, Pennsylvania, September 2, 1865, and received his early education in the private and public schools of that borough, until he entered a military school at Reading, Pennsylvania, then known as Selwyn Hall. Here he was prepared for the classical course at the Lehigh University, which he entered in 1883, and from which he was graduated with honors in 1887, receiving the degree of A. B. During his college course Mr. Fisher became a member of the Psi Upsilon fraternity, and at graduation he was also elected to the Phi Beta Kappa. He also won in his sophomore year the Wilbur Scholarship awarded annually to the student of highest rank in the sophomore class.

Upon leaving the university, Mr. Fisher pursued his studies at the General Theological Seminary of the Episcopal Church in New York City, from which he was graduated in 1890. The degree of Bachelor of Sacred Theology was given to Mr. Fisher by this institution of sacred learning in 1892, in recognition of his high standing during his seminary course. Mr. Fisher, while a student in New York, was also the successful competitor for the Seymour Prize for proficiency in extempore speaking.

Ordained to the diaconate in 1890 at Trinity Church, Pottsville, Pennsylvania, by the then Bishop of Central Pennsylvania, the Rt. Rev. Nelson Somerville Rulison, D. D., LL. D., Mr. Fisher began his active ministry as curate of the Parish of the Nativity, South Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, of which the present Bishop of Georgia, the Rt. Rev. C. K. Nelson, D. D., was then the rector. In the spring of 1891 Mr. Fisher was advanced to the priesthood by Bishop Rulison, at the Pro-Cathedral in South Bethlehem, where he remained as curate until the fall of the same year. He then accepted a call to the curacy of S. Luke's church, Germantown, Pennsylvania, where he was largely instrumental in building up an important mission at Olney, now known as St. Alban's. In 1895 Mr. Fisher accepted a call to the rectorship of St. Andrew's Parish, Buffalo, New York.

His incumbency of three years in Buffalo was notable chiefly for two things-the enlargement of St. Andrew's church edifice, and the appointment of its rector as chaplain of the Sixty-fifth Regiment New York National Guard, at the time that it was preparing to enlist for service in the Spanish-American war. During the spring of 1898 Mr. Fisher was with the regiment at Camp Black, Long Island, and there enlisted for service in the volunteer army with the regiment on May 3, 1898. The regiment was soon removed to Camp Alger, Virginia, where it remained until its return to Buffalo in the fall. The Rev. Mr. Fisher was the first of the volunteer chaplains invited to act as chaplain of the House of Representatives at one of the regular sessions. Mr. Fisher was mustered out of service with his regiment on October 6, 1898. On November 27th of the same year he accepted the call of St. John's Parish, Norristown, to became its rector.

The Rev. Mr. Fisher is descended from a distinguished line of ancestry both on his father's and mother's side. Judge Michael Fisher, the founder of the family in this country, was born in Edinburgh, Scotland, 1702 (o. s.) and came to this country in 1720 (o. s.) settling in Gloucester county, New Jersey. On November 3, 1730 (o. s.), he married, in the old Presbyterian church of Philadelphia, the Rev. Jedidiah Andrews officiating, Charity Chew, daughter of John Chew, the son of Richard Chew, who at one time owned large tracts of land at Flushing, Long Island, then known as Nassau.

To Michael and Charity Fisher were born four sons and three daughters. The son Joel of their eldest daughter, Christiana, who was married to Abraham Roe, was killed in the battle of Long Island. The eldest son of Judge Michael Fisher and his wife Charity, born February 20 (o. s.), 1736, was named Charles and married Alma Flaningham, May 30, 1770, at Philadelphia, the Rev. John Ewing, minister of the old Presbyterian church, officiating.

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Anna Flaningham, according to tradition, was a beautiful Woman, of superior intellectua1 attainments, vivacious manner, and a charming personality which created for her a wide circle of devoted friends. When a youth Charles Fisher was accustomed to call frequently at the house of Mrs. Flaningham, the mother of Anna. On one such occasion, Mrs. Flaningham, pointing to the child in the cradle, said to him: "Charles, you may have Anna for your wife." When Anna had reached the age of sixteen years, Charles offered himself, but found that she was already betrothed to James Jaggard, to whom she was shortly married. In the course of a few years Mr. Jaggard died, and after a suitable interval Charles again offered himself to Anna. His answer was: "Charles, you are again too late." Anna then was married to Samuel Pierce. When Mr. Pierce died, Charles attended his funeral, and on the way home, having entered the carriage of the widowed Anna, so it is said, made his third proposal, and was graciously accepted. His former- experiences justified his apparently unseemly haste to secure the charming Anna.

The result of this union was two sons, Michael Chew, born September 30, 1772, and William, born June 17, 1776. William died in boyhood. Michael Chew Fisher (the great-grandfather of the subject of this sketch) and Rebecca, daughter of Samuel and Abagail Blackwood, were married by the Rev. Andrew Hunter, October 1, 1795. Abagail died in 1801.

His second wife was Ann, daughter of Joseph and Ann Clement. Ann died in 1814. In 1818 he married his third wife Mary, daughter of Joseph and Elizabeth Reeves. Michael Chew Fisher died August 15, 1862, near ninety years of age. He had been a judge of the court of common pleas (Gloucester county, New Jersey) for a number of years.

The eldest son of Judge Michael C. Fisher and Rebecca Blackwood, Samuel Blackwood Fisher, was born in Woodbury, New Jersey, September 21, 1706. He married Eliza Hinchman, daughter of James and Sarah Hinchman, on February 23, 1820, at Salem, New Jersey. Samuel Blackwood Fisher (the grandfather of the Rev. Mr. Fisher) moved to Orwigsburg and thence to Pottsville, Pennsylvania, and became the pioneer engineer and geologist of the anthracite coal regions. His eldest son, born at Woodbury, November 8, 1824, was educated in the excellent private schools at Pottsville. He married Charlotte Ann Lord Sheafe on August 25, 1853.

Howell Fisher was admitted to the Schuylkill county bar in 1846, at the age of twenty-two. Mr. Fisher was a man of great versatility. In addition to the practice of the law he was an expert civil and mining engineer, skilled geologist, extensive coal operator and practical iron manufacturer.

In 1859 he was nominated for district attorney on the Republican ticket, and elected by a handsome majority over his opponent, Mr. George De B. Keim. Again nominated for the same office in 1862, he was defeated by the opposing nominee, Mr. Franklin B. Cowen. During the time of the repel invasion of Pennsylvania, Mr. Fisher. who was then operating a furnace at St. Clair, "at once stopped the works, and taking most of the men and horses, and receiving horses from others, organized a cavalry company of over one hundred men and horses, and, being sworn in at Pottsville, left for service."

"Besides the horses, etc., furnished, incidental expenses of raising this company and the support of many of the men were furnished by Mr. Fisher, and cost him several thousand dollars. This, with loss of three months' work at the furnace in the best season, which also amounted to a large sum, made him a money contributor to the war probably far heavier than all single individual in the county."

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In 1864 Mr. Fisher was the regular Republican nominee for congress, and again in 1878. Immediately after the war Mr. Fisher was employed by eastern capitalists to investigate the coal fields of Nova Scotia. Upon his recommendation two collieries were open, one in Cape Breton and the other at New Glascow, both of which were successful operations. In 1870 he published a valuable paper on "Agricultural and Mineral Resources of Virginia and West Virginia." He was the pioneer in the opening and working of coal mines and the building of coke ovens and furnaces at Lynchburg, Virginia, and was also placed in charge of the establishment of a rolling mill at that place.

The town of Quinninont, Fayette county, West Virginia, was founded and named by him. During the latter years of his life the Hon. Howell Fisher resumed the practice of the law at Pottsville, where he died on July 2, 1879, when his son, the Rev. Harvey S. Fisher, was fourteen years old.

Charlotte L. Fisher, the mother of the Rev. Mr. Fisher, was the youngest daughter of Jacob Sheafe and Mary Haven, both of Portsmouth, New Hampshire. Both the Sheafe and Haven families have been prominent in New England for many generations. Jacob Sheafe, who died in 1848, went to Pottsville, Pennsylvania, as the agent for the Girard estate.

He was born in 1784. His father, Jacob Sheafe, of Portsmouth, was born in 1745, and died in 1820. He married Mary Quincy, sister of Dorothy Quincy, the wife of John Hancock, the signer of the Declaration of Independence. The distinction of the Quincy family is too well known to need more than reference.

It was the above of whom mention is made in the following extract from "Rambles about Portsmouth" (page 333). "At a meeting of freeholders of the town of Portsmouth, December 16, 1773, it was resolved to resist the importation of tea. Six resolutions were drawn up, and it was therefore voted that the Hon. John Sherburn, John Pickering, Esq., George Ganes, Jacob Sheafe, Samuel Cutts, Esq., Samuel Hale, Esq., and Captain John Langdon, or any three of then, be a committee for the purpose aforesaid.

The said Jacob Sheafe was one of the signers of the following: "In consequence of the resolution (March 14, 1776) of the Honorable Continental Congress, and to show our determination injoining our American Brethren in defending the lives, liberties and Properties of the inhabitants of the United Colonies, we the subscribers do hereby, solemnly engage and promise that we will do the utmost of our power at the risque of our lives and Fortune with arms to oppose the hostile proceedings of the British fleets and armies against the United American Colonies" (Rambles about Portsmouth, p. 215).

This Jacob Sheafe was the great-grandfather of the Rev. Mr. Fisher. His father was also Jacob Sheafe, born 1715, died 1791, the son of Sampson Sheafe, born 1684, died 1772, and Sarah Walton. Sampson Sheafe's father, Sampson Sheafe, born 1650, married his second cousin, Mehitable Sheafe.

This Sampson's father, Edmund Sheafe, born 1605, married Elizabeth Cotton, daughter of Sampson Cotton, of London, England. Edmund was son of the Rev. Thomas Sheafe, canon of S. George's, Windsor, where his brass is still to be seen, and Maria Willson, daughter of another canon. Edmund's cousin Jacob was the father of the above mentioned Mehitable. It is this Jacob Sheafe who died in 1658 and whose name is now inscribed on the bronze tablet on the Tremont street gate of the King's Chapel Burying ground, Boston, Massachusetts. He married Margaret Webb, only child of the richest man then in Boston, and. thus laid the foundation of the family fortune always since then considerable. The father of Jacob was Edmund Sheafe, born 1559 of Cranebrook, County Kent, England, who married, May 30, 1586, Elizabeth Taylor, of London, and then Joan Jordan, the mother of Jacob, who migrated with him. There are several tombs of the Sheafe family in Rochester Cathedral, and the Sheafe coat-of-arms is there to he seen, carved on a ledger stone.

Edmund Sheafe and the Rev. Thomas Sheafe, were sons of Thomas and Mary Sheafe, and he of Richard (born 1510, died 1557), and Elizabeth. In the pavement of the nave of the old church at Cranebrooke, England, is the record of Mary’s death at the age of seventy-three in 1609. "Mary Sheafe the wife of Thomas Sheafe, who lived together near XLV years and had issue between them IX sons and XI daughters, she a grave and charitable matron dyed LXXIII years of age, Nov. 1609. Imposuit E. S." The family were all of Cranebrooke, Kent, for generations.

Thus the Sheafe family is readily traced back to the beginning of the sixteenth century.

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The Rev. Mr. Fisher's maternal grandmother, Mary Haven, was the daughter of the Rev. Samuel Haven, D. D., of Portsmouth. Of him the "Rambles about Portsmouth" says: (p. 325-6) "Dr. Haven during the Revolutionary war was a genuine son of liberty, giving the whole weight of his character, influence and exertions to the American cause. When the news of the battle of Lexington reached Portsmouth, he sat up a good part of the night with his family making bullets, and when in the next year an alarm was given in the night that the enemy was approaching, he shouldered his fowling-piece, and with his parishioners went to share in the toils and dangers to which they might be exposed."

He also made saltpetre for the army, which explains the following certificate signed by two physicians of Portsmouth given two months before the Declaration of Independence. "This is to certify that we the subscribers, by the request of the Rev. Dr. Haven, have examined a quantity of saltpetre made by him, and have weighed off three hundred and eight pounds, which we judge to be sufficiently pure and dry. Portsmouth, May 13, 1776." Signed by J. Brackett, M. D., and Hall Jackson, M. D.

The Haven genealogy has been compiled and published, and is to be found in the libraries of Portsmouth and other New England towns. Two interesting documents in the possession of the Rev. Mr. Fisher are the old family Bible of the Fishers, containing the family record, the original property of Charles Fisher, the son of the founder of the family in America (the Bible was published in 1760) and the elaborate chart of the Sheafe family and its branches in the United States.

Through the Quincys, a distinct Dutch strain enters the family, Mary Quincy's grandmother, Eliza Wendel, being of pure Dutch extraction. Other distinguished. ancestors of the Rev. Mr. Fisher of the seventeenth century are Philippe du Trieux, marshal of New Netherlands; Thomas Willett, first mayor of New York under the English; Major-General Daniel Gookin, the friend of "Apostle" Elliot and of the Indians, tolerant in an intolerant age, "the noblest Roman of them all."

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