Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Trip Part 5 Pennsylvania Home of Many Ancestors

Part 5 picks up in Pennsylvania where our Trafalgar tour headed next. We began the day in Gettysburg. We spent the first half of the day here. It was very moving. The area still has a somber feel to it. We were taken on a bus tour of the area. A Gettysburg expert provided the commentary as we toured the battlefield. He told us that not long ago more remains were found on the battlefield. Likely more remain are yet to be discovered. The monuments are very interesting. I was sorry I couldn't spend more to looking at the many monuments. Much of the old battlefield is now National Park land. Parts of the battlefield are now developed, with businesses and homes occupying some of this land. The Park continues to expand as they buy out some of these property owners.

I never thought about the civilian population of the area before. It didn't cross my mind that farmhouses dotted the battlefield. Many local residents took shelter in basements in town.

A home near the Gettysburg National Park

After leaving the park we drove through beautiful scenic countryside, and cute towns in Pennsylvania. We then headed to Amish Country, Lancaster County. This was an interesting ride for me because my Urmey/ Brower ancestors lived in Eastern Pennsylvania as did my Rollers, Roushes, and Zirkles.

I'm not sure where the Roushes, or Rollers lived in Pennsylvania? I am certain it was somewhere in Eastern Pennsylvania, because that is where the Germans settled, unlike the Scots-Irish who lived out on the frontier. The Zirkles lived in Telford, Philadephia County (now Montgomery County),   Pennsylvania before migrating to the Shenandoah Valley, Virginia. The Zirkles arrived in Pennsylvania in 1726. The Roushes in 1736. The Rollers 1750 .

Christian Brower and his father apparently settled in Coventry Township, Chester County, Pennsylvania in the 1720's. Christian Brower appears on a 1768 Tax list for Coventry.

1768 Tax List for Christian Brower, Coventry, Chester County, Pennsylvania

Christian Brower's son-in-law Jacob Urmey, my ancestor who died in 1831 in Indiana, appears on a Taxlist for Coventry, Chester County, Pennsylvania in 1787.  In 1788 and 1789 Jacob Urmey appears on East Norriton, Montgomery County, Pennsylvania Tax Lists. Jacob was married to Christian Brower's daughter Susannah.

My Kapple family originally settled in Lehigh County, Pennsylvania, in the 1890's, before migrating to Chicago. Many Burgenland, Austria families settled in Lehigh County, Pennsylvania.

I now realize how little I have about the lives of my ancestors in Pennsylvania. I will see if I can find any deeds for these families?

I really enjoyed Amish country. It is like stepping back in time. Interesting to see because I know their lifestyle is like my early Pennsylvania ancestors, and my farming ancestors everywhere, before the advent of modern technology. Seeing them working out in their fields, and riding around in their horse drawn buggies was like stepping back in time.

We stopped for lunch a an Amish tourist shopping center in Intercourse. I got some Ice Cream there and got a kick out Amish sales clerks accent. After lunch we headed to Philadelphia to check into our hotel.

Next time: Part 6 Philadelphia.

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