copyright 1999 by
Anne Frysinger Shifflet, Ph.D.
her E-mail address
contact her in regard to family history questions
My Mother's Grandparents
On her Mother's side
Isaac B. Keller , 18351911
Isaac B. Keller , the youngest son of George Keller  and Christina Brubaker , was born on 27 Feb 1835. His earliest years were spent in the Keller homestead in Springville, Ephrata Township, in Lancaster County. However, he was just seven years old when his mother died. His father remarried, and they moved to Elizabeth Township. Within a few years, his father died also.
Isaac was fourteen years of age when he went to court to request a guardian.
George Keller dec'd. The petition of Isaac Keller one of the sons of George Keller late of Elizabeth Township in the said County, Humbly sheweth. That your petitioner is a minor above the age of fourteen years, and hath no guardian appointed to take care of his person and estate. Your petitioner therefore prays your Honors to appoint John Royer of Ephrata Township as his guardian. Whereupon the court appointed the said John Royer Guardian of the said Isaac as prayed for. 1
Isaac Keller, 1837 - 1911, and Elizabeth Rudy Keller, 1839 - 1919
John Royer was also appointed guardian for Isaacs brother Elias and his younger sister Nancy. In 1860, Isaac, age 25, was farming for Elizabeth Keller, age 70, in Ephrata Township. 2 Elizabeth was the widow of Isaacs uncle Jacob.
Isaac  married Elizabeth Weidler Rudy , daughter of Daniel Rudy  and Anna Maria Weidler , on 4 Jul 1861. The marriage was reported in the weekly Lancaster Intelligencer on 16 Jul 1861: "On the 4th last, by the Rev. S. R. Boyer, Isaac B. Keller, near Ephrata, to Elizabeth M. Rudy, of Oregon." Elizabeth was most often called Eliza or Lizzie.
At the time of the 1870 census, Isaac B. Keller, age 35, was a farmer, but with no real estate. In his household were his wife Eliza, 30, keeping house, and their one-year-old son Wayne. Head of the adjoining household was Elizabeth Keller, 80, keeping house, with real estate valued at $21,000. 3 Elizabeth died in 1872, and, on 1 Apr 1873, Isaac and Eliza purchased the "messauge and plantation" in Ephrata Township from the executors of Jacob Keller, Isaacs uncle. The plantation, which adjoined the Keller homestead in Springville, consisted of 101 acres and 40 perches lying along the road from Lincoln to Shoeneck. They purchased it for $15,306.71. 4
The messuage was a stately stone home, built over a spring at the head of Trout Creek. 5 In the cellar, large flat rocks flanked the spring that flowed under the wall and emerged in the front yard. There were four large rooms on the first and second floors with a wide center hall. At the rear of the hall, a hand pump brought water up from the spring for kitchen use. It was a large, comfortable home in which to raise a family.
Isaac B. Keller was listed as a farmer at Lincoln in an 1875 county directory. 6 The federal census taken on 5 Jun 1880 lists Isaac B. Keller, age 45, farmer; his wife Eliza, age 40; Wayne, age 11; Annie, age 10; Lizzie, age 4; and two servants. This was just six months before Susie  was born. 7
Isaac B. Keller home in Springville, Ephrata Township, Lancaster County
(The people in the foreground have not been identified. The photograph was taken in the late 1800s.)
view in 1990
Isaac Keller  had been baptized into the German Baptist Brethren congregation in Ephrata in 1870. He was elected a deacon on 22 May 1878, elected to the ministry on 24 Oct 1882, and was advanced on 25 Jan 1890. When the Springville congregation was formed in 1899, Isaac Keller and Henry Royer were the ministers. 8 It was reported that Isaac Keller "invariably preached in the German language, and was exceptionally well versed in scriptural knowledge." 9 Although German was his first language, Issacs large family Bible was in English.
Isaac had grown up at a time when the Brethren were striving to maintain their distinct identity in an increasingly secular society. When Isaac was five years old, the Brethren in their Annual Meeting raised concerns about "the more and more increasing evil, that members conform so much to the world in building, house furniture, raiment, etc. and even to have a string of bells upon their horses at sleighing." 10
Isaac would certainly have heard about (and may have attended) the Annual Meeting held on John Royers farm on Trout Creek in 1846. The elders debated the various forms of pride creeping into the church and rendered this official statement:
It is thought highly necessary that the Yearly Meeting instruct and urge it upon all the overseers of the churches to see especially to that matter, and protest strongly against all manner of superfluity and vanity, such as building fine houses, and having paintings, carpeting, and costly furniture, etc., together with the adorning of the body too much after the fashion of the world. We believe that we should deny ourselves, and abstain from these things, especially the laborers in the Word, who are called to be ensamples of the flock. 11
The 1859 Annual Meeting was asked to consider:
"Is it becoming for members of the church of Christ to get the walls of their homes flowered, or papered with flowered paper?"
"Humility is one of the prominent principles taught by our dear Redeemer, in precept and example. We ought, therefore, to try and abstain from superfluities." 12
It seems that Isaac Kellers wife was not easily convinced of the need to avoid superfluities. According to her daughter Susie , Lizzie  sometimes found the rigid directives of the German Baptist Brethren restrictive and vexatious. Lizzie liked "nice things." One time she bought and put up wallpaper in the parlor, and was told to whitewash over it. When she wanted a new parlor stove, this feisty woman got an ax and chopped up the old stove. But the church had no objection to her planting flowers all around her home. And her skillful hands created many beautiful examples of fine needlework. Lizzie and her friends would visit after church, swapping pieces for patchwork quilts. Her finest work was an all velvet patchwork quilt, with a flower embroidered on every patch, embroidery over every seam, and the binding laced up at every mitered corner. 13
"Country Barn Raising" quilt made
by Lizzie Rudy Keller
(in possession of Galen Royer Frysinger)
Lizzie Rudy Keller
In a Lancaster County Directory in 1896, Isaac B. Keller was listed as a farmer in Ephrata Township. 14 Two years later he retired from active farming and moved to the village of Stevens, where he lived about a year. 15
However, at a public sale on 26 Mar 1898, Isaac purchased another 67-acre farm along the road from Lancaster to Reading for $5,364.52. They moved to this farm, about 1Ĺ miles north of Ephrata borough. 16
From the 1900 census of Ephrata Township we learn that Isaac B. Keller, 65, and Eliza, 60, had been married for 38 years. They owned their home, mortgage free. Eight children had been born to Eliza, but only four were living. 17 Eliza grieved terribly for those children who died. Susie  remembered her saying, "I miss Ikey so bad I want to go dig him up."
Isaac and Lizzie purchased two small tracts of land, eighteen and six acres respectively, in Ephrata Township on 31 Mar 1900. These tracts were sold to Henry Romig on 1 Apr 1905. 18 Then, on 6 Jun 1905, they bought a lot in Ephrata on Church Avenue, at the corner of Spruce Alley. 19 They moved into Ephrata, and rented for a year 20 while their new two-story brick home at 160 Church Avenue was being constructed. 21
Isaac wrote his will on 3 Jan 1907. He bequeathed to his wife Eliza the house in Ephrata and all the household furniture. The sum of $6,000 was to be "held in trust by my four children Wayne W. Keller, Annie Lane, Lizzie Forrey and Susie Royer fifteen hundred each at four percent interest per annum to be paid to my wife Eliza annually." The remainder of his estate was to be divided among the children. 22
Eliza was well aware (and perhaps a bit resentful) of the tradition that the family wealth was passed on primarily to the sons. In her own fathers will, her brothers had been given special consideration, but the daughters not even mentioned by name. Susie  remembered the time that one of Elizas brothers brought a honeycomb to their house on a pewter plate. Eliza never gave the plate back, and her brother never asked for it. She treasured the plate that had been her mothers. 23 Realizing that the time would soon come when her things would be dispersed, in August of 1909, Eliza scratched on the back of the pewter plate "Not to be sold. Give it to one of the children."
The 1910 census taker found Isaac, 75, "with his own income," and Elizabeth, 70, living in retirement at 160 Church Avenue in Ephrata. 24 Less than a year later, Isaac B. Keller  died of pulmonary troubles on 11 Jan 1911. 25 The weekly Ephrata Review carried his obituary on 20 Jan 1911.
Death of Rev. Isaac Keller
Rev. Isaac Keller, a well known resident of the borough, departed this life on Thursday afternoon, 12th last, at his residence on Church avenue, aged seventy-five, ten months and fifteen days. Death resulted from the infirmities of old age. The deceased had been ailing for the last four weeks, but had been confined to bed but one week before his demise. Rev. Mr. Keller was born and brought up at Springville, Ephrata township, on what is now the Israel Keller farm, he being a son of the late George and Christina Keller. In 1861, he was married to Miss Eliza W. Rudy. In 1898 he retired from farming, having lived at Springville up to that time, and moved to Stevens, where he resided for a year.
He then moved to the John Keller homestead, one and one-half miles north of the borough. In 1905, he moved to this borough, occupying one of the Eshleman homes on West Main street. During the latter year he built his fine residence at No. 160 Church avenue, where he has since resided. In the year 1870, the deceased united with the Church of the Brethren, and in 1878 he was elected to the office of deacon. In 1882 he was advanced to the office of minister and he had filled this office since that time, up to within four weeks of his death, when ill health prevented further service. The deceased is survived by his widow and the following children: Wayne W. Keller of York, Pa.; Anna, wife of H. E. Lane of Milway; Elizabeth R., wife of H. N. Forry, of York, Pa.; and Susie, wife of C. H. Royer, of Lexington. One sister of the deceased, Mrs. Anna Weidman, residing in Reading. The funeral was held on Monday morning, with services in the Church of the Brethren, this borough, and internment in the Springville cemetery. Elder David Kilhefner and Revs. S. W. Kulp and George Weaver officiated. Brief addresses were also delivered by Elders I. W. Taylor, J. H. Longenecker, J. W. Early and J. W. Schlosser. Funeral director L. Y. Eitner had charge.
Isaacs executors, his son Wayne and his daughter Annie Lane, moved promptly to fulfill the directives of his will. 26 Both of his farms were sold at public sales in September. The 63-acre farm Isaac had purchased in 1873 and 1874 was sold for $9,945.55 to Monroe N. Greely. 27 The 67-acre tract purchased in 1898 was sold to Martin B. Stauffer for $7,028.36. 28 By 6 Apr 1912, the estate was settled and the heirs signed a release from further claims. Each of the children had received $6,000, "one-fourth part as $1500 to be held in trust under the terms of said will" for the support of their mother. From the residual estate each child received an additional $3,841.80. 29
As Isaacs widow Eliza grew older she chose to sell her home in Ephrata. The two-story dwelling at 160 Church Avenue at the corner of Spruce Alley in Ephrata was "exposed at public sale" on 29 Sep 1917 and purchased by Mary Ann Trego for $5,010. 30
Eliza died on 18 Mar 1919 at the home of her eldest daughter, Annie, in Millway, Lancaster County. 31 Isaac B. Keller  and Elizabeth Rudy  were buried in the Keller Cemetery in Springville.
Keller cemetery in Springville
Children of Isaac B. Keller  and Elizabeth W. Rudy 
1. Rudy 9 Jan 1864 22 Mar 1865.
b d Keller Cemetery, Springville, Ephrata Township, Lancaster
County, Pa.. m
d Keller Cemetery, Springville, Ephrata Township, Lancaster County, Pa..
2. George 2 Mar 1866 13 Feb 1874.
b d Keller Cemetery, Springville. m
d Keller Cemetery, Springville.
3. Wayne Weidler 18 Sep 1868 4 May 1932 m. Emma Bupp
d Greenmount Cemetery, York, Pa. Also Emma, 7 Sep 18716 Dec 1966,
m The only child of Wayne Weidler Keller and Emma Bupp was Isaac Wayne Keller,
20 May 190826 Apr 1987. He married Arlene E. Wood.
4. Anna Eliza (Annie) 9 Oct 1870 15 Apr 1966 m. Harry E. Lane
d Keller Cemetery, Springville. Also, Harry Lane, 17 Mar 187510 Oct 1956.
m Their children were Florence, 5 Oct 190417 May 1993, unmarried, and Harry, 4 Oct 190710 Jan 1985, married to Mary E. Myers. Harrys obituary was in the Lancaster New Era, 12 Jan 1985.
High School Class of 1898
(Susie Keller is in the back row, second from the right)
5. Elizabeth R. 13 Oct 1876 2 Jul 1968 m. Harry Forry
d Prospect Hill Cemetery, York, Pa. Also, Harry Forry, 24 Oct 18737 Mar 1964.
m Their only child was Margaret, 8 Feb 189921 Aug 1986, unmarried.
6. Susan May  15 Oct 1880 1 Jul 1974 m. Clayton Royer
d Longenecker's Cemetery, Lititz. Pa. Also, Clayton, 18 Jan 188110 Apr 1939.
m Their wedding announcement states they were married on 19 Nov 1903. Their only child was Irene , 6 Feb 190920 Mar 1971. She married Hiram Frysinger  on 24 Dec 1930.
7. Isaac R. 19 Jun 1883 2 Feb 1888.
d Keller Cemetery.
The story of Susan Mae Keller  who married Clayton Hertzler Royer  is told here.
4. Lancaster County, Pa., Deed Book I-10-319, recorded 18 Apr 1873. The next year Isaac purchased another 21 perches of adjoining land from Jacob S. Buch who had also bought a portion of Jacob Keller's estate. (Lancaster County, Pa., Deed Book Y-20-226, dated 20 Oct 1874, recorded 2 Apr 1912. return to text
21. Lancaster County, Pa., Deed Book P-23-168, recorded 5 Jun 1918. Isaac purchased an additional 3.48 perches of land adjoining his lot on Church Street on 27 Apr 1907. (Lancaster County, Pa., Deed Book P-23-168, recorded 5 Jun 1918.) His residence on Church Avenue was listed in a 1909 county directory. (Lancaster, Pa.: R. L. Polk & Co., 1909), Ephrata Directory, p. 229. return to text
30. Lancaster County, Pa., Deed Book P-23-168, dated 30 Mar 1918, recorded 5 Jun 1918. Each of the children received $1,200 (Lancaster County, Pa., Deed Book P-23-171). The funds were held for the five grandchildren of Eliza, all minors (Lancaster County, Pa., Miscellaneous Book O-426, 28 Mar 1918, and Book P-182, 28 Mar 1918). return to text
Mother's Great Grandparents
Daniel L. Rudy, 17891873
Daniel L. Rudy  was born 11 Aug 1789, the son of Charles Rudy  and Barbara Long . On 14 Nov 1820, Daniel  married Anna Maria Weidler , 32 the daughter of John Weidler  and Susanna Gonter .
Daniel and Anna Maria bought the 106-acre farm in Warwick Township from Daniels father. 33 The federal census of Warwick Township taken on 13 Aug 1850 lists Daniel Rudy, age 60, his wife Anna, and five of their younger children. The adjoining dwelling was the home of Daniels youngest brother, Charles Rudy, age 43. 34
Sometime between 1850 and 1860, Daniel and Anna Maria moved to a home in Manheim Township. In 1860, farmer Daniel Rudys real estate was valued at $40,000 and his personal estate at $12,000. 35 At the time the 1870 census was reported, Daniel Rudy, age 81, was a retired farmer, with real estate valued at $12,500 and personal property at $5,000. His wife, Anna, age 69, was keeping house. 36
Daniel Rudy, 1789 - 1873. and Anna Maria Weidler Rudy, 1801 - 1872
The census and court records tell us only that Daniel was a farmer. His granddaughter, Susie Keller  (who was born a few years after Daniel died) remembered hearing stories about her grandfather being a stagecoach driver!
Anna Maria  died on 8 Jun 1872. After her decease, an inheritance from the estate of her father, John Weidler , descended to her children. Each of Anna Marias children received $96.73 on 19 Jun 1873. 37
By then, her husband had written his will. Daniel  of Manheim Township specified on 14 Mar 1873 the terms by which his sons should receive his various land holdings. Other real estate was to be sold.
Each son was to receive a special legacy of $1,000. The residue of his estate was to be divided among "all my children." His daughters were not mentioned by name. He did direct that his executors were "not to take into account any advancements by me to any of them heretofore made." 38
At a public sale on 24 Oct 1873 39, a small seven-acre piece of Daniel ís land was sold to Isaac Grubb. This was a part of a 193-acre tract which great-grandfather Daniel Rudy  had purchased in 1784. 40 The following April, a 15-acre piece of Danielís farm was sold to John Grossman. 41
As Daniel  had stipulated in his will, the major part of his property went to two of his sons. Isaac purchased 82 acres in Warwick Township for $9,075 on 11 Aug 1784. 42 The same day, a 109-acre farm in Upper Leacock Township was deeded to Daniel, Jr. for $13,108.50. 43
Then the executors distributed the proceeds of the estate to the heirs. Each of the three sons received a payment of $6,099.20 1/7; the four daughters each received $5,099.20 1/7. 44
Daniel L. Rudy  and Anna Maria Weidler  were buried in the Landis Valley Mennonite Cemetery in Manheim Township, Lancaster County, Pennsylvania.
Children of Daniel L. Rudy  and Anna Marie Weidler 
d Landis Valley Mennonite Cemetery, Manheim Township, Lancaster Co., Pa. Also, Nancy B. Hess, 22 Feb 1837-31 Aug 1915.
m Mennonite Research Journal, VIII, No. 4, p. 40.
d Zion Evangelical Lutheran Church Cemetery, Leacock, Upper Leacock Township, Lancaster County, Pa.
m Records of Zion Evangelical Lutheran Church, Leacock. They were married 9 Nov 1848.
d Bergstrasse Evangelical Lutheran Church Cemetery, Ephrata Township, Lancaster Co., Pa. Also, Peter Bard, 6 May 1821-28 Nov 1865.
m Records of Trinity Lutheran Church, Lancaster, Pa. They were married 11 Nov 1847.
d Landis Valley Mennonite Cemetery, Manheim Township Also, Salinda, 25 Sep 1843-15 Feb 1928.
m 1st: Records of Zion Evangelical Lutheran Church, Leacock. They were married 9 Nov 1848. 2nd: William O. Wingeard, German Rudy Immigrants in Lancaster County Pennsylvania in the Year 1737 (Harrisburg, Pa.: Author, 1988), family group sheet 1283, no page number.
d Landis Valley Mennonite Cemetery, Manheim Township, Lancaster Co., Pa. Also, Henry Brackbill, 17 Sep 1830-22 Jan 1905.
m Records of Trinity Lutheran Church, Lancaster, Pa. They were married 30 Sep 1851.
d Lancaster New Era, 22 Jul 1904, obituary of Lavinia Rudy Bomberger. Buried Middle Creek Church of the Brethren Cemetery, Ephrata Township, Lancaster County, Pa.
m Lancaster Intelligencer, 24 Mar 1857, marriage of Savinia (Lavinia) W. Rudy on 17 Mar 1856.
d Keller Cemetery, Springville, Ephrata Township Lancaster County, Pa. Also, Isaac Keller, 27 Feb 1835-12 Jan 1911.
m Lancaster Intelligencer, 16 July 1861. They were married 4 Jul 1861.
The story of Elizabeth (Eliza) Rudy  who married Isaac B. Keller  is continued here.
Mother's Great Great Grandparents
(Anna Maria Weidler's parents)
John Weidler , 17781870
Gonter Weidler, 1779 - 1851
(According to family tradition, this portrait was made when she was age 19.
The location of the original painting and the date it was photographed are unknown.)
John Weidler , the youngest child of Jacob Weidler  and Anna Weibrecht , was born on 4 May 1778. He married Susanna Gonter  on April 10, 1800. 45 Susanna was the daughter of the Lancaster gunsmith, Peter Gonter  and Susanna Haga . John and Susanna lived on the family farm in Manheim Township that was officially conveyed to them in 1805. 46 They cared for Johns parents until their deaths.
In 1813, John and Susanna built a home several hundred yards from the Conestoga Creek on the Manheim Township side. This was on the original land patented to his grandfather, Michael Weidler , and the home was built around remnants of earlier dwellings. 47 John added a small one-acre piece to their property in 1841. 48
When the federal census was taken on 17 Sep 1850, John Weidler, age 72, and Susan, age 70, had real estate worth $17,000. 49 Susanna Gonter  died on 16 Jun 1851. The 1860 census taker found "John Weidler, 82, Gentlemen" living in Manheim Township. His real estate was valued at $12,500 and his personal property at $20,000. 50
As his father had made an agreement with him, so John  made an agreement with his only son Jacob. "Subject to the right and privilege to and for the said John Weidler during his life with his family attendants and servants to occupy possess and enjoy the old dwelling house yards and garden which he now occupies with certain other rights and privileges," Jacob purchased the family homestead for $11,714.37Ĺ. 51
On 23 May 1866, the same day they signed the agreement, John Weidler  wrote his will.
I, John Weidler of the township of Manheim, in the County of Lancaster and state of Pennsylvania, do make an publish this my last Will and Testament in manner following to wit:
I order and direct that all my personal property and effects be sold by public vendue, by the Executor of this my will as soon as conveniently can be after my decease.
I direct that all my just debts and funeral expenses and the cost and expense of having a suitable tomb stone put to my grave, be paid out of my estate as soon as can be. I give and bequeath to my grand-daughter Maria W. Sheibley wife of Abraham Sheibley and daughter of my late deceased daughter, Susanna, One thousand dollars. ($1000).
Weidler, 1778 - 1870
photographed at age 82
The rest, residue and remainder of my estate whatsoever and wheresoever, I order and direct to be divided into five equal shares and parts, and I give one equal fifth share and part thereof to each of my son Jacob and my daughters Ann Rudy and Charlotte Miller and to their respective heirs and assigns. One other equal fifth share and part thereof to all the children of my late daughter Catharine Bard, deceased who shall be living at my decease and to the issue and descendants of any of them dead, per stirpes in equal shares and parts; and the other equal fifth share and part thereof to all the children of my late daughter Polly Bender, deceased, who shall be living at my decease and to the issues and descendants of any of them then dead, per stirpes in equal shares and parts.
I constitute and appoint my said son Jacob G. Weidler, sole Executor of this my last Will and Testament, hereby revoking all former Wills, Legacies and promises by me made.
Not any of my children or grand-children shall be charged with or account for any advancement made to them or their parents by me and which may appear charges against them. I have taken the same into consideration in the distribution of my estate among them in this will, and the legacy of One thousand dollars hereinbefore given to my grand-daughter Maria W. Sheibley shall be in full of her share or portion of my estate.
In witness whereof I hereunto set my hand and seal this 23rd day of May in the year of our Lord, one thousand eight hundred and sixty six; and after I had executed a deed to my son Jacob for my real estate.
Witnesses: W. Carpenter, Henry Franhauser. 52
John lived to the age of 92 and died on 27 Feb 1870. By the time his estate was settled on 4 Jun 1873 with a balance of $39,261.87 to be distributed, three of his five children had died. Shares were distributed to the grandchildren. 53
John Weidler  and his wife Susanna Gonter  were buried in the Salem United Church of Christ Cemetery in Upper Leacock Township, Lancaster County.
Children of John Weidler  and Suzanna Gonter 
1. Anna Maria , 28 Feb 1801 - 8 Jun 1872, m. Daniel L. Rudy
b Records of the First Reformed Church, Lancaster, Pa., translated from the German Records by Rev. Martin Brunner, the church's first bilingual pastor, who served from 1832-1839. (Lancaster County Historical Society microfilm no.276, no page numbers). Anna Maria, 28 Feb 1801 (bp. May 24, 1801) d/o John Weidler and Susanna. Sp: Mrs. Gonter.
d Gravestone in Landis Valley Mennonite Cemetery, Manheim Township, Lancaster County, Pa.
m Marriage Records of First Reformed Church, Lancaster, Pa. from 1807 to 1851. Copied by Mel Evans, Jr., p. 22: Anna Maria Wedler married Daniel Rudy on 14 Nov 1820.
2. Charlotte, 23 Jul 1804 - 22 Feb 1892, m. John Miller
b Records of the First Reformed Church, Lancaster, Pa. (microfilm). Charlotte, 23 Jul 1804
(bp. 4 Nov 1804) Sp: Mrs. Eberman.
d Landis Valley Mennonite Cemetery, Manheim Township, Lancaster County, Pa.
m Marriage Records of First Reformed Church, Lancaster, Pa. from 1807 to 1851. Copied by Mel Evans, Jr., p. 26. Charlotte Wideler m. John Miller, 24 Dec 1822.
3. Susanna M., 29 Dec 1806 - 3 Dec 1849, m. 1st David Zook, m. 2nd Kinzer Bender
b Records of the First Reformed Church, Lancaster, Pa. (microfilm), Susanna Margaret,
29 Dec 1806 (bp. 31 May 1807). Sp: Margaret Miller, Susan Geunther.
d Buried Salem United Church of Christ (Heller's Reformed) Cemetery, Upper Leacock Township, Lancaster County, Pa.
m 1st, Lancaster County, Pa., Deed Book L-7-479, dated 7 Feb 1850. 2nd, Meredith, Michael Weidler: His Antecedents and Descendents, p. 369.
4. Maria Levina, 1 Oct 1809 - 1 Jul 1929, unmarried
b Records of the First Reformed Church, Lancaster, Pa. (microfilm), Maria Lavinia, 1 Oct 1809 (bp. 22 Apr 1810) Sp: Susan Ganther.
d Salem United Church of Christ (Heller's Reformed) Cemetery, Upper Leacock Township.
m Meredith, Michael Weidler: His Antecedents and Descendents, p. 369.
5. Mary (Polly), 14 Apr 1811 - 18 Mar 1842, m. Kinzer D. Bender
d Buried Salem United Church of Christ (Heller's Reformed) Cemetery, Upper Leacock Township, Lancaster County, Pa.
m Lancaster Examiner, 15 Sep 1831. "Married - Tues 6th inst. by Rev. Hoffmeier, Kinzer Bender, of Leacock twp, to Miss Mary Weidler, dau of John Weidler, of Manheim twp. Lancaster Co."
6. Catharine M., 29 Mar 1814 - 27 Mar 1860, m. George Bard, Jr.
d Buried City Cemetery of Lancaster, Pa. Also, George Bard, 28 Oct 1809-13 Nov 1873.
m Records of the Moravian Church, Lancaster, Pa., married 8 Dec 1831.
7. Jacob G., 8 Feb 1816 - 30 Nov 1902, m. Margaret Steiner
d Lancaster County Death Affadavit, F-1-537, 8 Dec 1902. Buried Salem United Church of Christ (Heller's Reformed) Cemetery, Upper Leacock Township, Lancaster County, Pa.
m Meredith, Michael Weidler: His Antecedents and Descendents, p. 369. Jacob was married at Trinity Lutheran, Lancaster, on 3 Mar 1846.
The story of Anna Maria Weidler  who married Daniel L. Rudy  is continued here.
45. Records of the First Reformed Church, Lancaster, copied by William J. Hinke. In F. Edward Wright, Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, Church Records of the Eighteenth Century (Westminster, Md.:Family Line Publications, 1994), 2, p.200. return to text
47. Photographs of the home and the date stone are found in Elizabeth V. Meredith, Michael Weidler: His Ancestors and Descsendants (Wolfe City, Tex.: Henington Publishing Co., 1987). p. 3. This well-documented book provides an account of the European background and earlier generations in Pennsylvania. Many excellent photographs of primary sources are included. return to text
On her Father's side
Joseph Royer? and son?
Joseph R. Royer , 18441921
Joseph R. Royer , the seventh child and third son of Daniel L. Royer  and Veronica Royer , was born 8 Oct 1844. 54 The large farm family lived in Millcreek Township in the easternmost corner of Lebanon County and worshipped at the Millbach Brethren meetinghouse. However, when Joseph was 15, they moved to Marion Township, Berks County, where his father and older brothers operated a mill.
Joseph was not quite 18 years old when his father died. A few weeks after the death, he went to the Orphans Court to request a guardian.
18 Sep 1862
To the Honorable the Judges of the Orphans Court of the County of Berks:
The petition of Joseph Royer respectively represents, That the petitioner is a minor child of Daniel Royer of the township of Marion, in said County of Berks, deceased above the age of fourteen years, is resident within the said County and has no guardian to take care of his person and estate. He therefore prays the Court to admit him to make choise of a guardian for the purpose aforesaid. And he will, &c 55
Joseph chose Peter Nissley of Millcreek Township in Lebanon County as his legal guardian. When his fathers household items were sold on 31 Oct 1862, Joseph purchased the family sleigh for $8.75. When he became 21 years of age, he could benefit from the bequest in his fathers will. Daniel  had directed that each child should be given $1,000 plus an outfit valued at $500 for the boys and $400 for the girls. 56 Considering the prices at the time the will was written, the term "outfit" here probably referred to an assemblage of equipment needed to start out in adult life.
Record of Marriage in the Family Bible (15 July 1866)
Joseph married Emma Hertzler , the daughter of Jonathan Hertzler  and Elizabeth Royer . Where they spent the first years of their married life is uncertain. However, Joseph and Emma were already living in the village of Lexington in Warwick Township, Lancaster County when, on 31 Mar 1876, they bought eight acres of land along Walnut Street in Lexington for $700. 57
Record of Births from the Family Bible
At the time of the 1880 census, Joseph, age 35, was listed as a farmer in Warwick Township with Emma, 35, and five children: Wm. H., 13; Minnie, 11; Maggie, 8; Harvey H., 5; and Lizzie, age 1. 58 Their last child, Clayton H. Royer , was born the following year on 18 Jan 1881. 59
and possibly her doll
July 22, 1856
given to Harvey Royer (name on upper right)
now in possession of Pat Royer Atkinson, Portage, Wisconsin
On 2 Apr 1883, Joseph purchased for $749 a three-acre "parcel of woodland situate in Warwick Township . . . beginning at a stake in the public road leading from Lexington to Lititz" which adjoined his other land in Lexington. 60 He paid $2,000 for "all that certain messauge tenement and tract of land situate in Elizabeth Township . . . beginning at a stone in a public road leading to David H. Snavely's mill . . . containing six acres . . ." on 2 Apr 1888. 61 The following April 1 he bought a 13 acre adjoining tract on the Warwick Township side of the road leading to Snavelys mill for $1,700. This tract also bordered on the road from Lexington to Brunnerville. 62
Josephs wife Emma Hertzler  died on 18 Feb 1894 at just 49 years, 5 months, and 25 days of age. She was buried in the Middle Creek Brethren Cemetery on Church Road in Ephrata Township. In late spring of 1895, Joseph married Amanda Haldeman, the daughter of John Haldeman of Schuylkill County. 63
Record of Emma's Death from the Family Bible
also for a stillborn child Milton
On 14 Dec 1895, Joseph was the highest bidder at a public vendue and he acquired "all that certain messauge tenement and Township pieces of land situate in Warwick Township . . . together one acre and 25 perches . . ." for $400. 64 A county directory indicates that Joseph had established a butcher shop in Lexington by 1896. 65 At a Sheriffs sale on 21 Aug 1897, he bought another 10-acre plot that adjoined his land. 66
The 1900 census listed Joseph R. Royer, butcher, age 55, with his young wife Amanda, age 29. Still living at home were Harvey H., 25, a butcher working with his father; Lizzie H., 21, working as a servant; and Clayton H., 19, a farm laborer. 67 A 1903 county directory again listed "J. R. Royer, butcher, Lexington." 68
On 31 Mar 1904, Joseph and Amanda paid $815 for a house and two small pieces of ground (80 by 110 and 45 by 50 feet) lying contiguous along the east side of Race Street in Lexington. 69 This purchase was made shortly after Josephs son Clayton  got married. The house on Race Street may have provided a home for the young couple while Clayton was training to take over his fathers butcher shop, or, more likely, Joseph and Amanda lived there with Clayton and his wife moving into the old house.
Joseph  and Amanda bought another adjoining "small tract of land without improvements" on the west side of Race Street. 70 Then two days later, on 2 Apr 1906, for $600, Joseph and Amanda sold the house and two lots he had purchased at the Sheriffs sale in 1895. 71
In a 1909 county business directory, Joseph Royer of Lexington was listed, but not designated as a butcher. Instead, now Clayton Royer  was the butcher in Lexington. 72 The 1910 census confirmed Josephs retired status. He was listed as age 65 with "own income." Amanda, 39, was working as a "seamstress in own house." 73
It was time for them to liquidate some of their holdings. On 1 Mar 1913, they sold three parcels of land to Harvey S. Miller for $6,000. These included the eight acres on Walnut Street in Lexington bought in 1876, the three acres acquired in 1883, and ten acres purchased in 1897. 74 However, a 1914 county directory indicated that Joseph and Amanda continued to live in Lexington. 75
Joseph R. Royer  died on 14 Dec 1921, aged 77 years, 1 month, and 16 days. The following obituary appeared in The Ephrata Review on 23 Dec 1921.
Joseph R. Royer, a well-known resident of Lexington, died on Wednesday morning of last week, of heart disease and dropsy, aged 77 years, after an illness of some months. The deceased was a butcher by occupation but had lived retired for a number of years. He was a member of the Brethren church.
He was a native of Richland, Lebanon county and was a son of Daniel Royer. Mr. Royer was twice married. His first wife before her marriage was Emma Hertzler. This union was blessed with the following children who survive him: William, Manheim; Harvey, Lititz; Clayton, Neffsville; Mrs. Elmer Bollinger, Lititz; Mrs. Henry Nissley, Richland; Mrs. Curtis Burkholder of Williamsport.
The deceased's second wife, nee Amanda Haldeman, formerly of Pine Grove, and the following brothers and sisters also survive: John R. Royer of Ephrata; Mrs. John Spayd, of Bellvue, Ohio, and Mrs. Eliza Hertzler, of Richland.
The funeral was held last Saturday afternoon with services and burial at Middle Creek.
his death notice
Joseph R. Royer had written a will on 28 Dec 1918. He directed that his entire estate be converted into money soon after his decease and that a suitable tombstone be purchased and placed at his grave. He bequeathed "the sum of two hundred ($200) dollars to the General Missions Board of the Church of the Brethren of Elgin, Ill. their successors and assigns for general mission purposes." Joseph stated: "I give and bequeath the sum of five hundred ($500) dollars to my wife Amanda S. Royer absolutely." In addition, he requested "the sum of Three Thousand ($3,000) Dollars to my executors hereinafter named in trust they to invest the same and pay the annual net income to my wife Amanda S. Royer during the term of her natural life as long as she remains my widow. Upon the death or remarriage of my said wife I give and bequeath the principal sum (of Three Thousand Dollars) to my children then living or the issue of any that may be dead share and share alike . . ." After these specific bequests were granted, the net balance was to be distributed among the six children. His three sons, William Royer, Harvey Royer, and Clayton Royer  were named executors. 76
On the day that Josephs will was probated, his widow, Amanda, signed a document stating: "I do hereby formally waive my statutory right to dower, accepting in lieu thereof the devises and bequests to me made in said will, and I desire and direct my interest in said estate to be delivered and paid to me in accordance with my election as herein made." 77
Pursuant to the directions of Josephs will, the three lots and buildings on Race Street in Lexington were "exposed at public sale on the 14th day of January A.D. 1922" and sold to Harry E. Markley for the sum of $1,500. 78 The two tracts along the road to Snavely's mill were sold to Lloyd B. Witmer for $4,500 on 31 Mar 1923. 79 The affairs were settled and the inheritance taxes paid by 1 Nov 1923, at which time the accounting showed a balance of $8,071.45 to be divided among the children. Clayton Royers one-sixth share was $1,345.24. An advancement of $351.00 to him was deducted, bringing his inheritance to the amount of $994.24. 80
Amanda S. Royer was living in Ephrata when she wrote her will on 29 Jan 1924 just after Josephs estate was settled. She also requested that her estate be turned into money, with the entire net balance to be given "to the children of my late husband Joseph R. Royer." Amanda lived as a widow for 25 years and died on 18 Oct 1946. 81 When her will was probated, letters of administration were granted to her son-in-law, Elmer Bollinger, "the other residuary legatees having renounced." The fact was that Amanda had outlived all but one of her stepchildren. The inheritance went to heirs of the next generation, with Irene Frysinger  receiving $289.21. 82
Amanda was buried at Middle Creek Church of the Brethren Cemetery, beside her husband, Joseph R. Royer  and his first wife, Emma Hertzler . 83
Older man is Joseph Royer
Children of Joseph R. Royer  and Emma Hertzler 
1. William 28 May 1867 31 May 1946 m. Catherine Habecker b Francis, Genealogical Records of the Royer Family, p. 115. d Estate papers of Amanda Royer, in Lancaster County Courthouse. m Francis, Genealogical Records of the Royer Family, p. 115. Married 27 Mar 1886 to Catharine Habecker, d/o Christian and Mary Sahn Habecker. Butcher in Manheim. Ch: Mazie m. George F. Fisher, Reading.
2. Minnie 19 Oct 1868 31 Mar 1939 m. Elmer Bollinger b Francis, Genealogical Records of the Royer Family, p. 115. d Estate papers of Amanda Royer, in Lancaster County Courthouse. m Lancaster County, Pa., Deed Book M-26-108. Also, Francis, Genealogical Records of the Royer Family, p. 116. Married 7 Feb 1902 to Elmer Bollinger, s/o Martin Bollinger. Elmer was a carpenter in Lititz. One son died at 8 months.
3. Margaret 3 Feb 1871 8 Jul 1946 m. Henry Nissley b Francis, Genealogical Records of the Royer Family, p. 115. d Estate papers of Amanda Royer, in Lancaster County Courthouse. m Lancaster County, Pa., Deed Book M-26-108. Francis, Genealogical Records of the Royer Family, p. 116. Married 26 Aug 1892 to Henry Nissley, 26 Feb 1872. They lived in Richland. Ch: Earl, Carrie May, Amy.
4. Harvey 21 Dec 1874 9 Sep 1935 m. Ada T. Lenhart b Francis, Genealogical Records of the Royer Family, p. 115. d Longenecker Church of the Brethren Cemetery (near Lititz). Also, Ada T. Royer, 7 Nov 187612 Sep 1956. m Francis, Genealogical Records of the Royer Family, p. 116. Married 26 Mar 1903 to Ada Lenhart, Harvey was a butcher in Lititz. Ch: Joseph Paul, 21 Sep 1903; Naomi Elizabeth, 30 Mar 1909.
advertisement for Harvey Royer, Butcher
as a youth played in a band (second from right)
along with Milton S. Hershey, Chocolate King (far right in band photo)
who played the Autoharp5. Lizzie 14 Aug 1878 after Aug 1947 m. Curtis Burkholder b Francis, Genealogical Records of the Royer Family, p. 115. d Estate papers of Amanda Royer, in Lancaster County Courthouse. m Lancaster County, Pa., Deed Book M-26-108. Also, Francis, Genealogical Records of the Royer Family, p. 116. Married 15 Nov 1905 to Curtis Burkholder, He was a carpenter in Manheim. Ch: Bernice, Ida, Anna Kathleen.
6. Clayton H.  18 Jan 1881 11 Apr 1939 m. Susan Keller b Francis, Genealogical Records of the Royer Family, p. 115, and family records. d Longenecker Church of the Brethren Cemetery near Lititz, Pa. Also, Susan M. Royer, 18801974. m Clayton married Susie Keller, d/o Rev. Isaac B. Keller, on 19 Nov 1903. A wedding announcement is in my possession.
The story of Clayton H. Royer  and his wife Susan M. Keller  is told here.
left to right
Ernestine Forbes Royer
Ada Lenhart Royer (wife of Harvey H. Royer)
Susie Keller Royer
Teacher and students at the Lexington
school, Warwick Township, Lancaster County, circa 1894
(Clayton Royer is in the back row, third from the left.)
54. Tombstone, Middle Creek Church of the Brethren Cemetery. Also, J. G. Francis, Genealogical Records of the Royer Family in America (Lebanon, Pa.: Author, 1928, p. 110. This Royer genealogy was based on records kept by Michael Zug, 1832-1910. return to text
58. 1880 U.S. census, Lancaster County, Pa., Warwick Township, page 32, dwelling 4856; National Archives micropublication T9, roll 1140. Joseph was not listed in the separate Lexington section. return to text
63. Francis, Genealogical Records of the Royer Family, p. 115. The 1900 census (taken June 20) indicates that they had been married for 5 years. In the 1910 census (taken April 20) it was 14 years. return to text
67. 1900 U.S. census, Lancaster County, Pa., Warwick Township, page 177, dwelling 346, family 362; National Archives micropublication T623, roll 1426. There was also a reference to "No. of farm schedule: 90." return to text
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