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industrious, diligent, and energetic workers in any enterprise in which he, may engage, that is to be found, perhaps, in Pennsylvania. His handsome improvements in Prince street, near his residence, amongst which " Roberts' Hall" may be mentioned, will long perpetuate his name in Lancaster city and county, and his public as well as private record will, for years to come, be evidence of the manner in which politeness with industry can, in free America, rear one from. indigence and obscurity, rank him amongst the fortunate .as regards possession, and enrol his name high upon the temple of fame.
ROBERTS, JOHN, a member of the Legislature in the years 1801, 1802, 1803,.1804 and 1805.
ROBINSON, JOHN, elected State Senator in 1831.
ROGERS, MOLTON C., for many years a prominent member of the Lancaster bar. He was a native of Delaware, and son of Gov. Daniel Rogers, of the same State. He graduated at Princeton College, New Jersey, and afterwards studied law at Litchfield, Connecticut He removed to Lancaster; and was admitted to the bar in the year 1811. He soon took rank amongst the leading members of the profession, and that at a time when the bar was distinguished by men of first class ability. He was married to a daughter of Cyrus Jacobs, an iron-master of Lancaster county. In 1819 he was elected State Senator over Emanuel Reigart, receiving 2094 votes to 2088 for his competitor. Upon the election of J. Andrew Shultz, as Governor of Pennsylvania, Mr. Rogers was selected as Secretary of the Commonwealth, and on the 15th of April, 1826, he was commissioned by the Governor one of the Judges of the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania, a position he held up to 1851. Judge Rogers possessed intellectual powers of a high order, and therewith united great personal amiability as also general scientific and literary culture. As a jurist he was fearless and incorruptible, dignified in his demeanor, and his sense of right was acute in the highest degree. He was ardently devoted to the great principles of the Democratic party; but, upon the breaking out of the rebellion, he lent the weight of his influence in favor of the war for the restoration of the
OF LANCASTER COUNTY - 501
Union. He died in Philadelphia, September 27, 1863, in the year of his age.
ROHRER (JOHN'S) FAMILY. John Rohrer was born in Alsace, Germany, (lately a part of France), in the year 1696. When about the age of fourteen, the scourge of religious persecution drove his father and his family from his native land ; and John being sent back to obtain and bring the family goods, was captured and lost. sight of his parents entirely. He found his way to England, where he studied veterinary surgery, and afterwards sailed for America and settled in Lancaster county. After some years residence in his new home, and having acquired some real estate, he in 1732 married Maria Souder. All this time he had .lost sight of his parents. Being in Philadelphia, and hearing of the landing of a vessel he started for the landing, and one of the first of the passengers whom he met, turned out to be his father. John immediately recognized his parent, but the latter did not know his son. His mother had died and his father was married again, and had two or three sons by his second wife. They were destitute of means and expected to' be sold for their passage money. He paid the demands, brought his father and his family with him, and aided his half brothers to property near Hagerstown, Maryland. John Rohrer had four sons, viz : Martin, Daniel, John, and Christian ; and four daughters, viz : one married to a Houser, one to a Smith, one to a Bachman, and another to Peter Miller. His third son, John, was a member of the Legislature in the years 1818, 1819-20.
ROHRER, JACOB, elected County Commissioner in 1815.
ROHRER, JOHN, elected Clerk of the Orphans' Court in 1839.
ROLAND, HENRY, elected County Commissioner in 1821.
ROLAND, JOHN H., elected a member of the Legislature in 1856.
ROSS, GEO., JR., son of George Ross, Sr., was a staunch patriot in the Revolution, and for sometime Vice President of the Supreme Executive. Council. In 1791 he was commissioned by the Governor, register of wills and recorder
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of deeds, which offices he held for eighteen years. known amongst the citizens as "der Waisenvater."
*ROSS, ,GEORGE, was born in New Castle, Delaware, in the year 1830. His father, the Rev. George Ross, of the Episcopal church, was a man of considerable ability and of rare classical attainments, and early perceiving that his sou gave evidence of aptitude for study, he determined upon furnishing him an education that would fit him for any position in society. He was accordingly placed under instructors, and was not long in laying the foundation of a fine education, especially in his acquisition of the languages, in which he particularly excelled. By the age of eighteen he had made such advance in learning, that he was deemed amply qualified to enter upon the study of law, and he prosecuted it under the instructions of his elder brother, John, a lawyer of good standing in the city of Philadelphia ; and as soon as he had finished the regular course of reading then prescribed for students, he was admitted to the bar. Finding that the ranks of the profession were at that time filled in the city of Philadelphia, he determined to try his fortune in some interior portion of the country, and for that purpose chose Lancaster, at that time near the limits of civilization. He settled in Lancaster about the year 1751. It was not long after his becoming a citizen of this latter place, that he married Miss Ann Lawlor, a lady of a most respectable family ; and devoting himself zealously to the pursuits of his profession, he soon obtained a lucrative and increasing practice. Not long after this settlement at Lancaster, he was made prosecutor for the King, and discharged the duties of this office with eminent success.
Actively engaged in the pursuits of his profession, he does not seem for some time to have taken much part in political affairs, and the first notice we find of him in this connection, is his election as a representative to the assembly of Pennsylvania, in which he took his seat in the year 1768. Of this body he continued to be reelected a member until the year 1774. During all the time he remained a member of
*Sanderson's Biography of the Signers of the Declaration of Independence, pp. 523 and 528.
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the assembly, he merited and obtained the utmost confidence both of his colleagues and of his constituents. Whilst a member of the assembly, Mr. Ross seems to have given particular attention to the condition of our intercourse with the various Indian tribes settled within the State, or wandering near its borders. But it was not long till Mr. Ross was destined to act as the organ of the assembly in more important affairs than in quarrels about the maintenance of a petty garrison, or the aggression of a few hostile Indians. He had for a long time seen with that deep indignation that arises in the breast of a freeman, the arbitrary proceedings of the British government, and felt convinced that a general cooperation among the several provinces was necessary to secure their liberty. The resolutions of Virginia and of the other States, proposing the convention of a general congress of all the American colonies, was music to his ears. They were not, however, received in the assembly of Pennsylvania until it was on the eve of dissolution, as it was the opinion of the majority that whatever measures might be adopted, should proceed from a future assembly who would meet fresh from their constituents and representing their sentiments. Mr. Ross, nevertheless, was appointed on a committee to draft a reply to the speaker of the house of delegates of Virginia, and in so doing took occasion to express the cordial feelings he entertained. " The assembly of Pennsylvania," he says, " assure your honorable House that they esteem it a matter of the greatest importance to cooperate with the representatives of the other colonies in every wise and prudent measure which may be proposed for the preservation and security of their general rights and liberties ; and it is highly expedient and necessary that a correspondence should be maintained between the assemblies of the several colonies. But as the present assembly must in a few days be dissolved by virtue of the charter of the province, and any measures they might adopt at this time rendered by the dissolution ineffectual, they have earnestly recommended the subject matter of the letter and resolves of the House of Burgesses of Virginia, to the consideration of the succeeding assembly."
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In the month of July following, it was unanimously resolved to appoint a committee of seven members, on the part of the province, to meet the delegates of the other colonies at such time and place as might be generally agreed upon; and Mr. Ross was elected one of the members of this committee. He was also, by a singular coincidence, at the same time appointed to draw up the instructions under which they and himself, as one of them, were to act; these, however, are very properly simple and general in their terms, leaving them in a very great degree to be adopted, such as future circumstances might require. Under these instructions Mr. Ross took his seat in Congress on the 5th of September, 1774, and remained a member of that body until January, 1777, when he obtained leave of absence on account of indisposition and retired. His conduct met with the warm thanks and approbation of his constituents, and of this honorable evidence has been preserved in a resolution passed by a public meeting, held in the borough of Lancaster, which is as follows:
Resolved, That the sum of one hundred and fifty pounds, out of the county stock, be forthwith transmitted to George Ross, one of the ' members of assembly for this county, and one of the delegates for this colony in the Continental Congress, and that he be requested to accept the same as a testimony from this county of their sense of his attendance on the public business, to his great private loss and of their approbation of his conduct.
Resolved, If it be more agreeable, Mr. Ross purchase with part of the
said money, a genteel piece of plate, ornamented as he thinks proper, to remain with him as a testimony of the esteem this county has for him, by reason of his patriotic conduct in the great struggle for American liberty.
Mr. Ross, however, declined accepting this liberal and honorable present, stating to the committee in so doing that his services were overrated by his fellow-citizens ; that in bestowing them he had been impelled solely by his sense of duty, and that every man should contribute all his energy to promote at such a period the public welfare without expecting pecuniary reward. The occupations of Congress did not, however, prevent Mr. Ross from continuing his -duties as a member of the Provincial Legislature, where we find his name recorded among the zealous political leaders
OF LANCASTER. COUNTY - 505
of the time. Early in the year 1775 Mr. Penn, the governor and proprietary of the province, sent a message to the assembly, referring to the peculiar situation of the colony, and though couched in mild and conciliatory language, evidently meant to repress, if possible, the mode of proceeding which had been pursued by the union and cooperation of all the colonies. It was the universal custom at this period, for the assembly to reply at once to the messages of the governor, and on the present occasion it, of course, obliged the members of the House to express their opinions, and to decide at once whether the plan hitherto pursued should be retracted, or whether they should firmly stand by congress and support its measures. The talents of the political leaders of the day were called out, and they exerted themselves in several long debates in favor of their several opinions. Mr. Ross was an able speaker, and he urged the continuance of decisive measures, with all the weight of his talents, character and influence ; and he and his friends so far succeeded as to obtain the appointment of a committee coinciding in their views, and of which he was a member. This committee presented as their report an answer to the governor's address, in the following terms : “We are sincerely obliged to your honor for your attention to the true interests of the people over whom you preside, at a time when the disputes between Great Britain and the American colonies are drawing towards an alarming crisis; and we agree with you that in all cases wisdom dictates the use of such means as are most likely to obtain the end proposed. We have with deep concern beheld the system of colony administration, pursued since the year 1763, destructive to the rights and liberties of his Majesty's most faithful subjects in America, and have heretofore adopted such measures as we thought were most likely to restore the affection and harmony between the parent State and the colonies, which it is the true interest of both countries to cultivate and maintain, and which we most sincerely wish to see restored. We must inform your honor, that a most humble, dutiful and affectionate petition from the delegates of all. the colonies, from Nova Scotia to Georgia, is now at the foot of the
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throne, and we trust in the paternal affection and justice of our most gracious sovereign, that he will interpose for the relief of his greatly distressed and ever faithful subjects in America. We assure your honor, that the House will always pursue such measures as shall appear to them necessary for securing the liberties of America, and establishing peace, ,confidence and harmony between Great Britain and her colonies." On the presentation of the report-another violent debate arose, which lasted for ten days, when it was carried by a majority of twenty-two to fifteen voices.
In the summer of 1775 the Legislature found that measures more vigorous than resolutions were necessary, and they determined at any rate to make preparation to meet the consequences of their previous measures, whatever they might be. To this end they appointed Mr. Ross and several of the leading members of the Assembly, a committee to consider of and report such measures as might be expedient to put the city and province in a state of defense. This committee after deliberating a few days, brought in a series of resolutions approving of the association of the people for the defense of their lives, liberty and property, providing for the pay of such of them as should be engaged in repelling any hostile invasion of the British troops, and recommending the several counties of the province to collect stores of ammunition and arms. To carry their plans better into effect they appointed a general committee of public safety for calling forth such of the associators into actual service when necessity requires, as the said committee shall judge proper for paying and supplying them with necessaries while ill actual service, for providing for the defense of the province against invasion and insurrection, and for encouraging and promoting the manufacture of saltpetre, which said committee were authorized and empowered to draw orders on the treasurer thereinafter appointed for the several purposes above mentioned. Of this committee, which became for some time, as it were, the executive organ of the government, Mr. Ross was a leading member, as he was also of another important committee, that of grievances. Besides other important relative to the war, he was appointed with two other
OF LANCASTER COUNTY - 507
gentlemen, to prepare rules and regulations for the government of the forces of the province which might be raised.
When the proprietary government was dissolved and the general convention substituted for the previous Legislature, Mr. Ross took his seat in it also as a representative for Lancaster county. He was, within a few days after its organization, appointed on a committee to prepare a declaration of rights on behalf of the State, and chairman of two others of much importance—that of forming regulations for the government of the convention, and that for preparing an ordinance declaratory of what should be high treason and misprision of treason against the State, and what punishment should be inflicted for these offences. Indeed, in all legal matters, Mr. Ross at this period stood deservedly high. Before the Revolution he was among the first of his profession ; and in the change which that event had produced in its component parties, as well as its forensic character, he still maintained the same rank. These changes were, indeed, very considerable ; subjects of higher importance than those which commonly fall to the lot of provincial judicatures were
brought forward ; motives sufficient to rouse all the latent energies of the mind were constantly presenting themselves. The bar was chiefly composed of gentlemen of aspiring minds and industrious habits ; and Mr. Ross found himself engaged among men with whom it was honorable to contend and pleasant to associate. Mr. Wilson, who had practiced with great reputation at Carlisle ; Mr. Biddle, from Reading; Governor Morris, occasionally and sometimes; Mr. Reed, till he was chosen a member of the Chief Executive Council; and Mr. Lewis, of Philadelphia, in conjunction with Mr. Ross, formed an assemblage of powerful and splendid talents which might have coped with an equal number of any forum in America. The whole faculties of this bar were soon put in requisition for the prosecutions which were commenced against some of those accused of being adherents of the British cause. The popular excitement against them was high, and their defence appeared to many a service of danger; but the intrepidity of the bar did not allow them to shrink from the conflict, and Mr. Ross, and Mr. Wilson,
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especially, embarked all their talents, zeal, and professional reputation in the cause of those who were thus accused.
The last public employment in which Mr. Ross was engaged, was that of a judge of the court of admiralty for the State of Pennsylvania, to which he was appointed on the 14th of April, 1779; and while on the bench he was esteemed a learned and impartial judge, displaying sound legal knowledge and abilities, and great promptness in his decisions. He did not, however, long occupy the station he was so well calculated to fill, as he died suddenly in the month of July following, from a violent attack of the gout. Of his character little remains to be said beyond what has been already detailed. In his domestic habits he was kind, generous, and much beloved ; in his professional career, zealous and honorable ; as a practitioner, always active and patriotic; and he seems to have earned the praise bestowed upon him by one who knew him, as "an honest man and upright judge."
ROSS, JAMES, son of George Ross, sr., raised in 1755 the first company in Lancaster, in Col. Thompson's regiment, of which he was made captain, and marched to Cambridge for the defence of the liberties of his country. He rose to the rank of lieutenant-colonel of the eighth Pennsylvania regiment, with which he fought in the memorable battle of the Brandywine. In the battles of Long Island, Trenton and Germantown, he bore a conspicuous part. He was appointed judge in the territory of Louisiana. He died August 24th, 1808, in the 55th year of his age.
ROSS, WILLIAM BIRD, was elected County Commissioner in the year 1817, and in 1821 was appointed Clerk of the Quarter Sessions.
ROWE, BENJAMIN F., was elected Sheriff of Lancaster county in the year 1857.
ROYER FAMILY. Sebastian Royer emigrated from the Palatinate to America about the year 1720, bringing with him four sons. Two of his sons being young men grown, decided to settle in Montgomery county, from whom the families of this name in Montgomery and Chester counties are. descended. Sebastian Royer and his two younger sons settled in Elizabeth township, Lancaster county. He
OF LANCASTER COUNTY - 509
was a Lutheran by persuasion, and being a widower, married again. His wife was a member of the German Reformed church, and he donated a couple of tracts of ground, one for the erection of a German Reformed church and the other for a Lutheran church. The churches erected upon these tracts (the Brickerville churches), stand to this day. His son John inherited the old homestead property, sold it and crossed the Susquehanna river, where his descendants are numerous in Cumberland, Franklin, Huntingdon and adjoining counties, and also in the State of Maryland. Samuel Royer, a member of the reform convention in 1838, and John Royer, a member of the Legislature from Cambria and Somerset counties, in 1842, belonged to this family.
AMOS ROYER, the youngest son of Sebastian, settled in Ephrata township, and was the founder of the Royers of Lancaster and Lebanon counties. He had four sons, viz : Philip, John, and Christopher. Daniel had four sons, viz John, Jacob, Joseph and David. John and Jacob settled in Lebanon counties, and left sons ; Joseph emigrated to the State of Ohio ; David remained in Lancaster county on a part of the old homestead, still possessed by his only heir, Samuel, now .an old man. John, son of Amos Royer, remained on part of the old home property (on which is built the Royer meeting-house), and left numerous descendants in the county. Christopher, his brother, settled in West Earl, on the farm of Christian Rupp, and leaves numerous descendants in Lebanon county and elsewhere. His brother, Philip, settled in Manheim township, and had five sons, viz : Joseph, Benjamin, Jonathan, Abraham and Philip. Joseph remained on the old homestead, and had three sons, viz : John, Joseph, and Daniel. John had five sons, viz : Jonas, Cyrus, Daniel, John and Henry. Jonas lives in Lebanon county ; Cyrus, in Providence township ; Daniel, near Napierville, Illinois ; John, in West Earl ; and Henry on the old home farm. Joseph, one of the three sons of Joseph, has three sons, viz : Israel, Tobias, Joseph R., and lives in Lancaster city. Daniel, his brother, has three sons, viz : Reuben, Martin, and Jonathan, in Warwick township. Benjamin, son of Philip, had two sons, viz : Daniel, and Benjamin.
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Daniel had one son, Samuel, living in Ephrata township, and who has four sons, viz : Phares, Isaac, Abraham and Milton; and Benjamin has a son in Ephrata township. Jonathan, son of Philip, Settled in Leacock township, near Intercourse, leaving a son, John, whose family survives him. Abraham, son of Philip, settled on Mill creek, and leaves descendants. Philip settled in Cocalico township, and left sons, whose descendants live near Reamstown. Isaac Royer, of Ephrata township, and his brother Reuben, are grandsons of John Royer, of Mill creek, Lebanon county.
RUTTER, NATHANIEL, a member of the Legislature in 1818 and 1819.
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SAMPLE, DR. NATHANIEL W., oldest son of the Rev. Nathaniel W. Sample, was born at Strasburg, Lancaster county, Pa.. He was instructed by his father in the classics, as he for many years had been in the habit of instructing a few young gentlemen as students in his house. He studied medicine with Dr. Duffield, of Strasburg, and began the practice of the profession in his native town. After practicing the profession for a few years in Strasburg, he removed to Paradise, and bought the farm on which he lived for a long time. Here he lived and practiced his profession for many years. He held a high rank as a member of the Free Masonic fraternity. He died at Gordonville, aged 80 years.
SAMPLE, REV. NATHANIEL W., was a native of York county, Pa., and a graduate of Princeton college, New Jersey. He graduated during the Revolution, and studied theology at Princeton. He first located as a clergyman at Strasburg, and preached for the Presbyterian congregation of Strasburg, Leacock and Octoraro. He married a lady of Chester county, named Elizabeth Cowan. He was an excellent classical scholar. He left five sons and three daughters. He died at the advanced age of between 83 and 84 years, and lies buried at Leacock.
OF LANCASTER COUNTY - 511
SANDERSON, GEORGE, is a native of Cumberland county, Pennsylvania. In 1836 he became editor and proprietor of the American Volunteer, the old Democratic organ published at Carlisle. He continued to publish the paper until 1845, when he relinquished it to take charge of the post-office in that borough, tendered to him by President Polk. In the meantime he held the office of prothonotary of Cumberland county for three years and nine months, from 1839 to 1842—first by appointment, under Governor Porter, and subsequently elected by the people. In 1849, upon relinquishing the post-office at Carlisle, he removed to Lancaster and became proprietor and editor of the Lancaster Intelligencer, the old Democratic organ of Lancaster county. He continued his connection with this paper until 1864, a period of fifteen years. In 1859 he was elected Mayor of the city of Lancaster, and continued to hold the office for ten years and nine months, having been elected for nine consecutive terms. In October, 1869, he retired to private life. Always devoted to the principles of the Democratic party, and adhering to its organization in prosperity and adversity, he nevertheless secured not only the confidence of his own political friends, but to a large extent the good will and respect of his political opponents.
SAUNDERS, ISAAC, was a member of the Legislature in the years 1757, 1758, 1759, 1760, 1763 and 1764.
SCHAEFFER, EMANUEL, was born February 27th, 1793. Having lost his father when young, his mother and her children became a part of the household of his maternal grandfather, John Miller, an eminent citizen of Lancaster, once high sheriff of the county, and also a member of the State Senate. At the age of fifteen the subject of this notice was apprenticed by his grandfather to learn the saddling and harness-making business. After the expiration of his apprenticeship, he worked at his trade in the capacity of a journeyman, and having saved from his earnings about one hundred dollars, he began business upon his own account in Lancaster. When about twenty-five years of age he married, and his wife dying seven years afterwards, he entered into marital relations the second time. In 1841 Mr. Schaef-
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fer was appointed by Governor Porter ore of the associate judges of the courts of Lancaster county, which office he held for five years, when he was reappointed by Governor Shunk, and discharged his duties with great fidelity for four years more, making his aggregate term of service as associate judge, nine years. In 1841 he was elected president of the Lancaster Savings Institution, a position he held for some years. He served as president of city councils for thirteen years. Besides these positions, Mr. Schaeffer was frequently chosen to fill various offices of trust and responsibility, all of which he discharged in such a manner as to effect much credit upon himself and render entire satisfaction to the public. Mr. Schaeffer 'was an active supporter of the temperance cause, and during the whole of his life adhered strictly to the principles of sobriety, honesty, and the proper observance of religious duties, which resulted in that success and prosperity which he enjoyed. From the organization of the Church of God, in the city of Lancaster, he was an elder and annually reelected. He was the superintendent of the Sabbath school belonging to that church for many years, and also a delegate to the east Pennsylvania and general elderships for a number of years. He died November 13th, 1864, aged 71 years, 8 months, and 16 days.
SCHAUAI, BENJAMIN, elected Commissioner of Lancaster county in 1808.
SCHWARTZ, CONRAD, elected County Commissioner 1805.
SCOTT, ABRAHAM, a member of the Legislature in th years 1781, 1782 and 1783.
SCOTT, ALEXANDER, was a member of the Legislature in the years 1797, 1798, 1799 and 1800. He was also elected to the State Senate in 1792.
*SCOTT, MAJOR JOHN, son of Samuel Scott, was bor at "Scott's Manor," ¹ in the year 1749-50. At the time of
¹ Scott's Manor was a name given to a large tract of land taken up and patented probably as early as 1740, by Samuel Scott, an original settler in Little Britain, and the father of John Scott. The mansion
* Contributed by Charles H. Stubbs, M. D.
OF LANCASTER COUNTY - 513
the breaking out of the Revolutionary struggle with the mother country he was a young man, and it appears that he did not enter the service in the first years of the war. The contest for freedom becoming protracted, and for a time the final success of the Americans under Washington doubtful, John Scott, like many other patriots of that time, resolved to leave his rural pursuits and join the army. At the age of twenty-seven he recruited a company of militia, composed chiefly of his neighbors—the yeomen of Little Britain—and Marched it to Lancaster. He was elected captain, and his company entered as part of the second battalion of Lancaster ,county militia, formed in the year 1777.
James Watson was elected Colonel of this battalion; James Porter, Lieutenant-colonel, and Dorrington Wilson, Major. It consisted of eight companies, numbering, rank and file eight hundred and five men. John Scott commanded the first company, and consequently acted as senior captain. This battalion was ordered to the front immediately after its formation, and took part in the principal battles fought in the Middle States. Captain Scott remained in the service during the war, was present and took part in the battles of Brandywine, Germantown, and several engagements near New York and on Long Island. For bravery he was promoted to the rank of Major. After the close of the war he was honorably discharged, and returned to the Manor, which he inherited upon the decease of his father. Here he spent the remaining years of his life in superintending and improving his estate. He died at an early age, on the 1st of February, 1796, in his 47th year. His remains were interred in the southeast corner of the graveyard attached to Little Britain Presbyterian church. Over the grave his son and .daughter have erected a handsome marble obelisk, seven feet in height, resting on a broad, flat, limestone base. On the west side is the following epitaph: "Major John Scott, an officer under Washington during the Revolutionary war, who distinguished himself at the battles of Long Island,
house erected by him, stood near the site of the present residence of Samuel Scott, a great-grandson of the settler. The farms of N. Davis Scott, Samuel Scott, and several of the Wrights, of Little Britain, were originally parts of this manor.
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White Plains, Brandywine, Germantown, &c. Died February 1, 1796, aged 47 years." On the east side : " Erected by William and Eleanor Graham Scott, October 17, 1845, hi memory of their departed friends."
SELDOMRIDGE, JOHN, elected Prothonotary of Lancaster county in 1863.
*SEYBERT, REV. JOHN. In many respects the subject of this memoir was a very remarkable man. As regards firmness of will and rigid self-denial he probably stands unrivaled. Indefatigable activity, faithful, disinterested and self-sacrificing devotion for the dissemination of what he regarded as the truth, were peculiarly marked features of his character. Unlettered and untaught as regards the technical rules of science, his natural good sense and discriminating judgment supplied in his career the want of early advantages, and rendered him one of the ablest theologians of his time and Country. His father was a native of t3ermany, and came to America during the Revolution, with the British army, then a youth of but fifteen years of age. At the close of the war he chose to remain in this country, and for this offence was imprisoned in Lancaster in default of one hundred dollars commutation money. A man by the name of Shaffner, commiserating the condition of young Seybert, paid for him the hundred dollars, on condition that he should serve three years in his employ as a tailor. After the termination of this period of service, he married a young woman named Susana Kreutzer, whose father when crossing the ocean to America, had found a watery grave amidst the deep waves of the Atlantic. By industry and economy Henry Seybert, the father of the subject of this sketch, acquired some property, and died in March, 1806, leaving a farm and some considerable amount of money.
John Seybert, the subject of our notice, was born near Manheim, Lancaster county, Pa., July 7th, 1791. He was the oldest of four children, all of whom were sons. When he was about thirteen years of age his parents became the subjects of religious conviction, and his mother being a woman of very tender sensibilities, was the first to yield to
*Contributed by John B. Good, esq.
OF LANCASTER COUNTY - 515
her feelings, but it was not long till the father also followed, and from this time their house became the principal resort of the Ministers of the Albright Society, now more generally known as Evangelical Methodists. It was under the influences that thus surrounded him that young Seybert first felt the workings of God's spirit in his heart, but at this time, however, no permanent impression seems to have been made, for as he himself says: " His love of levity and vanity was still too strong." Indeed, at. this time, it is said that his parents regarded him as the most perverse of all their children; his strong will and firm independence seeming in their eyes wickedness of the deepest dye. At the age of ten years he began going to school, and continued his attendance during the winter mouths of every year, until he acquired a fair knowledge of both English and German. His father also sent him to a Lutheran clergyman as a catechumen, with the design of having him confirmed as a member of that church. He says that at this time he and the other catechumens were very wicked sinners, who were guilty of all manner .of sins and wickedness. For some reason or other he was never confirmed as a member of the Lutheran church. He may, perhaps, have regarded himself as too vile a sinner, for he believed that the bad company in the school and among the catechumens, made him still worse than he otherwise should have been. He was now thirteen years of age, and was passionately fond of the fascinations of sin, which he says he committed with the greatest zest.
At the age of fourteen, when his parents had already Changed their religious views, he frequently felt the influence of the Spirit striving with him, but he always deferred his conversion, still thinking that there was yet plenty of time, and thus no permanent effects towards a regeneration were produced. During all this time good and evil seem to have waged a terrible conflict in his soul. When under religious influence he felt penitent, but evil with him still held the upper hand; and when amongst his youthful companions,. he would, against better knowledge, commit sins for which conscience afterwards had to suffer many pangs of anguish and regret. His father having died in 1806, his mother be-
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came a follower of the celebrated George Rapp, left her children and lived in Rapp's colony, called " New Harmony," near Pittsburg, Pa., leaving her family to take care of themselves as best they could. His mother used every persuasion to induce her sons to follow her into her new relationship, but John, the oldest of them, manifested at this time, though but sixteen years of age, such independence of will as is rarely found to be possessed by one of his age. Though he never could be induced to follow her, but frequently visited her, and whilst she lived tendered her every mark of filial affection. In 1810, when he was nineteen years old, he was brought under conviction, through a sermon of Rev. Mr. Betz, and after a protracted struggle committed himself to God. He became a member of the Evangelical Association (German Methodists), in which he was soon selected as a class leader and public exhorter. One of his classes was in Manheim, and the other in Mount Joy, Lancaster county, Pa. In 1819 he entered the ministry as a local preacher, and the year following set out as an itinerant.
His literary and scientific attainments at this time were of the most limited character. He had little other attainment, save being able to read and write in the most plain and humble manner. But he was in possession of an indomitable will, and his untiring energy and never flagging industry, together with his clear thoughts and common sense, soon compensated for lack of education. He rapidly improved as a pulpit declaimer, and it was not long till friends and enemies became convinced that John Seybert was by no means a man of ordinary ability. He was, nevertheless, the subject of many privations, and of the most bitter persecution, and that on the part of those from whom better things should have been expected. To us it seems almost incredible that man whose energies are enlisted in behalf of the welfare of his fellow•men, should meet with so much opposition, an often, indeed, with brutal treatment. Among his bitter persecutors were some who stood high in the church, but whose vile treatment of him were no doubt in a great measure influenced by envy at his rising reputation. John Seybert was always scrupulously plain and simple in his dress. He
OF LANCASTER COUNTY - 517
never wore boots, but always brogans. In his diary he mentions, that at one time he was traveling in a heavy continuous rain, which drenched him thoroughly ; his brogans were filled with water, and yet he adds, " such things did not discourage me." On account of the faithful discharge of his duties as a minister, his advancement in the church was rapid. In June, 1822, he was elected deacon, and in the same month, three years later, was made a presiding elder. He always kept a diary, in which he noted down a full synopsis of his labors as an itinerant preacher, as well as his experiences of inner life, his hopes and his fears, his joys and his sorrows. In the earlier years of his ministry he was much troubled as to his being divinely called to preach the, Gospel of Christ. Whenever his brethren in the ministry conferred a new mark of confidence upon him, or promoted him to some new position in the church, he invariably in his diary expresses great distrust and diffidence ; but generally consoles himself with the reflection, that it was not his own, but the judgment of the brethren that prompted the step, and that consequently he was not personally responsible, as it was done without his request or solicitation.
There is in the earlier part of the minutes of his diary, a feature that forcibly strikes the attention of the reader. He hardly pays any attention to the political divisions of the country, such as townships or counties ; he simply mentions the name of the families whose hospitality he enjoyed, and little more than this is noted by him. The geographical localities he passes over in silence. He speaks of rivers, mountains, and valleys, as these were objects that plainly presented themselves to his vision ; but of the imaginary lines that divided townships and counties, he gives little or no mention. They, perhaps; did not occur to his mind. But this is not the only instance that this really great man appears simple as a child. All his energies were directed to one point, and that was the glory of his Divine .Master all else was, in his opinion, folly and vanity, and hence worthy of but little attention.
He was elected bishop at the seventh session of the general conference of the Evangelical Association held at Mill-
518 - BIOGRAPHICAL HISTORY
heim, in Centre county, Pennsylvania, commencing March 25th, 1839. There were at this time only eighty traveling preachers connected with the church, of whom thirty were present as delegates to. the conference. His election to the bishoprick took place on the second day of the session, at about five o'clock in the evening, and he was the unanimous choice of all the clergymen in attendance at the conference. It is noteworthy the great simplicity that characterized the clergymen of that early day, and the economical habits that they practiced; and conspicuous amongst the early pioneers, Bishop Seybert deserves special mention. His habits were so simple, and his wants so few, that he required little else to supply his wants, save the merest necessities of life. As an example of his economical method of traveling, the following instance may suffice : He traveled from eastern Pennsylvania into the interior of the State of New York, a distance of three hundred miles, at an expense of $2.83, boarding and fare included.. His path through life never was one strewed with flowers, but he had ever his own difficulties with which to contend. Amongst these the following may be cited as illustrative of the obstacles which he was required to encounter. On the 7th of August, 1840, he attended a camp-meeting .on Turkey Hill, Lancaster county, and was considerably annoyed by the conduct of some ill-bred men who were in attendance. Of them he thus speaks : " These creatures did not behave themselves at all like .human beings; they were, if human, some of the Turkey Hill brutish men, who either never had any sense at all, or left it at home with their oxen, horses, and sheep ; for they walked about with heads devoid of all reason ; they jolted each other about, and made use of such vulgar and profane language that every. decent person was ashamed of them."
During the first four years of his official term as bishop, there were three of his conferences—the East Pennsylvania, West Pennsylvania, and Ohio. At each of these he presided as bishop ; beginning with the East Pennsylvania conference he reached that of West Pennsylvania in April, and the one held in Ohio in May. In 1844 the Illinois conference was organized, but by that time another bishop had been elected,
OF LANCASTER COUNTY - 519
who shared the labors of the office with him. The new bishop was Rev. Joseph Long, who was elected in 1844. The two bishops divided the work between them, Bishop Long presiding at the sessions of the Pennsylvania conference, and Bishop Seybert at those of Ohio and Illinois. While engaged in the incessant labors of his office he visited in August, 1845, the churches of his denomination in Upper Canada. Here the people were much surprised at his plain dress,.his child-like simplicity of manners, and to hear the unadorned and unstudied style of his address. They expected to hear a bishop, most necessarily of great consequence as well as of exterior display, and whose preaching would far transcend the intelligence of plain people. But in this they were very agreeably disappointed, for in Bishop Seybert they found a 'faithful follower of his Divine Master, who endeavored to be the servant of all.
On account of the sickness of his co-adjutant, Bishop Long, in the spring of 1846, he was required to preside at the sessions of both the Pennsylvania conferences as well as those in the West. On the 4th of July of that year he happened to be in Mount Carmel, Illinois, and in his diary notes some reflections which he indulged in as regards the observance of the national holiday. He says that the children of this world early began the celebration of the day with drinking, dueling, profanity and wild cheering. He adds, however: "I also got on my feet, hurriedly visited nine families in the morning, then shaved myself, greased my shoes and put on clean clothes, and then traveled thirty miles that day." From the above extract -it is perceived that he used grease for his shoes instead of boot-blacking, an article he seems never to have used, this being categorized by him in the list of luxuries.
One instance of the charitable feelings of Bishop Seybert is thus detailed : On a cold day in the winter of 1846, while traveling in Ohio, he met a constable who was hauling a weaver's loom on a sled. Having entered into conversation with the officer, he learned that he had levied on the loom for a debt of little over four dollars; that the owner of the loom was a poor weaver, who depended on his trade for the
520 - BIOGRAPHICAL HISTORY
support of a numerous family. The bishop listened patiently to the end of the story, and then declared that this case was too hard, and asked the constable whether he would return the loom to its owner if he paid the debt and costs. " O, yes," said the officer in reply, " that is all I want." Upon which the bishop at once paid the money, and 'the constable returned the loom to the poor weaver, who was very much surprised as well as heartily thankful to this eccentric stranger for his act of kindness. The weaver afterwards became a member of the bishop's church, obtained the position of class-leader in the same, and afterwards the bishop and other clergymen frequently preached sermons at his house.
He attended the general conference of his church at New Berlin, in Union county, Pa., and on the 22d of October, 1847, was reelected bishop, this making his third term in the episcopal office. During the year 1850 he refused to accept any salary at all, as he regarded it the year of jubilee of the Evangelical Association, it being the 50th year since the denomination was founded by Jacob Albright, in the county of Lancaster, Pa. It was his intention to accept nothing at all after this as a salary ; but he was censured by Others for this, as it was considered the setting of a bad precedent, and he therefore yielded so far as to accept the salary, but disposed of it at his discretion for benevolent purposes. About this time he changed his mode of traveling on horseback to a dearborn wagon. At all events, in the spring of 1850 he attempted to ford the Lycoming creek, above Williamsport, Pa., with a dearborn wagon, at a time when the stream was
much swollen, and he narrowly escaped finding a watery grave. Henceforth he was much more cautious in venturing to cross a stream of water. In 1852, at the general conference held at Pittsburg, Pa., he was reelected for the four time to the episcopal office. From May 1st to June 19th 1853, he preached a series of sermons in the State of Ne York and Upper Canada. His appointments were all made in advance of his arrival for a thousand miles, and he punctually supplied all of them at the very times that had been specified. On September 24th, 1855, at the general con-
OF LANCASTER COUNTY - 521
ference, he was for the fifth time elected bishop, which occasioned still deeper feelings of humility to rise in his soul, and he again formed new resolutions to labor with industry and faithfulness in God's cause. On the 11th of September, 1856, he met with an accident at Lincoln, Stark county, Illinois. His horse ran off; upset his carriage, and threw him upon the ground with great violence, and from this fall he was very severely injured. He alludes in his diary to
accident in the following language: "There was great danger that my old and weary body, which was become frail and weak through preaching 10,000 sermons during the last thirty-five years, had entirely broken down ; for I find that the hardships incident to the itinerant ministry have impaired my strength. The Lord has, however, helped me again in this misfortune. To Him be praise forever."
About this time Bishop Seybert presided in the West Pennsylvania conference, where he took occasion to speak very earnestly of the duties of traveling preachers, and with much warmth expressed his disapprobation of the conduct of those who had forsaken the itinerancy and settled down to enjoy an easy life. "As for me," he said, "it is my intention to die in the field; when I can no longer preach every day, then I will preach four times a week; if that won't go any more, I will preach twice a week; and if I cannot preach any more twice a week, I'll preach once; I will die on Zion's walls." In 1858 he wrote in his diary : "What a happy man I am in my 68th year; I am at present well almost every day, and in good spirits ; my sense of hearing is very acute, and I frequently read without spectacles, and if necessary, would try to preach three times a day. Glory to God." On October 13, 1859, he was elected bishop for the sixth time. In politics Bishop Seybert was always a Democrat, yet towards the institution of slavery was exceedingly hostile. He ever felt disinclined to travel in territory where slavery was sanctioned by law. Whenever he returned from a slave State he thanked God for the deliverance from the accursed soil. He believed that the principles of the Democratic party were right, but that slavery did not belong to them; the evil one had sown these tares in the field of Democracy. On the 18th of December,
- 36 -
522 - BIOGRAPHICAL HISTORY
1860, he preached for the last time. His journal stops with the 28th of the same month. He stopped with a man named Isaac Parker, near Bellevue, Sandusky county, Ohio. Being asked concerning the cause of his weakness, he merely spoke of having a bad cold. He rested on a lounge, and occasionally read his favorite authors, viz : Hiller, A'Kempis and Tauler. He also regularly read his Bible lesson every day. About an hour before his death he related that he had a dream, and in his dream that he came to a place where there were many preachers who were all glad to see him, and he desired to greet all by shaking hands with them, but that the number was so great that he had not yet had time to do so before he awoke. An hour later no doubt his dream was realized, in meeting an innumerable company of the redeemed in heaven.
Bishop Seybert died January 4,1861. When the near approaching symptoms of death made their appearance, Mr. Parker, at whose house he was lodging, went out to call some ,of 'the neighbors that they might be present when the spirit .of the aged pilgrim would take its departure. His son remained alone with him in the room. The weary wayfarer :sat upon his lounge, his hands folded like those of a child in prayer.' All at once he broke the solemn silence by saying: " How terrible must death be to a wicked person." Then having paused for a few moments, he again remarked : “Death commences below," at the same time laying his hands lower down on his body, " and proceeds upwards, and when he comes to this place," placing his hand upon his heart, "then it is all over with us." Thus I also shall sometime fall asleep. Here his voice stopped ; he sunk on the lounge, and while young Parker stood by his side, he gently fell asleep and his spirit took its flight to the mansions of the blessed.
SHAW, ANTHONY, who emigrated from Ireland and settled within the limits of the Friends' meeting, at Sadsbury, was a man of considerable ability, being well educated, and remarkable for his piety and his many virtues, and was a worthy and serviceable member of the denomination of Friends at the time that the Sadsbury monthly meeting was first estab-
OF LANCASTER COUNTY - 523
lished. He was elected a member of the Legislature for the years 1740-41-42-43. He was appointed a commissioner. and justice of the peace for Lancaster county in the year 1738, and the ancient documents in Sadsbury and Salisbury attest his abilities as a writer, a scholar and an upright and conscientious man.
SHAEFFER, BARTRAM A., was born in Lancaster county in 1824, and at an early age removed to Ohio, where he received his education. Having returned to Lancaster, he began the study of law in the office of George Ford, esq., and was admitted to the bar in the year 1847. Interesting himself considerably in politics, he was soon honored with the confidence of his party, and was returned as a member of the Legislature in the year 1850, and also in 1851. Acquitting himself with credit, he was elected to the State Senate in 1857. He was also chosen attorney for the Pennsylvania railroad company, a position he held for several years. Upon the organization of the militia in 1858, he was appointed major general of the division composed of the counties of Lancaster and Chester. When the rebellion broke out, he immediately tendered his services, and was appointed as aid on the staff of General Beim, of Berks county. He served in this capacity for six months, being with General Patterson's division in the Shenandoah valley. His health and eyesight failing, he was compelled to give up military service and return home. He was for some time engaged with C. S. Kauffman, of Columbia, in the iron manufacture. He died in 1864.
SHELLEY, ABRAHAM, was elected a member of the Legislature in the years 1846-47.
SHENCK, HENRY S., was elected Register of Wills in 1869.
SHENK, MICHAEL, a Commissioner of Lancaster county, elected by the Republicans in October, 1804. He was a citizen of Conestoga township, and an active and useful citizen. He died October 18th, 1806.
SHENK, RUDOLPH W., was born in Conestoga township, Lancaster county, Pennsylvania, on the 4th of October, 1834. His parents were Christian Shenk, (now deceased) and Mary
524 - BIOGRAPHICAL HISTORY
Warfel Shenk, and his ancestors were among the earliest settlers of Lancaster county. He attended school at Litiz' under Prof. John Beck, from 1849 to 1851. In 1852 he entered the academy at Erie, Pa., and in 1854 entered Dartmouth College, where he graduated in 1858. He read law and was admitted to the bar in November, 1859. At the breaking out of the rebellion he enlisted in Co. F. (Lancaster Fencibles) Captain Emlen Franklin, first regiment Pennsylvania volunteers, and served until the expiration of their term of enlistment. In August 1862 he was appointed Major of the 135th regiment of Pennsylvania volunteers, and served with the same until it was mustered out of service at the expiration of its term of enlistment. He was appointed deputy marshal of the Ninth district, Pennsylvania, in June 1863, and was elected to the Legislature in the years 1864-65. He is engaged in the practice of his profession, and is a member of the firm of Bair & Shenk, bankers, of this city.
SHERER,, JOSEPH,. was a delegate from Lancaster county to the convention which framed, in 1776, the first Constitution of Pennsylvania.
SHIPPEN, EDWARD, was one of the leading citizens of Lancaster borough for many years before and at the breaking out of the American revolution. He held most of the county offices, as prothonotary, register, recorder, &c., from the year 1753 up to the commencement of the revolution. He was one of the committee on correspondence appointed at a meeting held in Lancaster, June 15th, 1774, to correspond with the committee of Philadelphia, which had been, constituted to obtain an interchange of sentiment among the people of Pennsylvania with reference to united action in opposition to British encroachment. At a meeting of this committee, consisting of Edward Shippen, Geo. Ross, Jasper Yeates, Matthias Slough, James Webb, William Atlee, William Henry, Ludwig Lauman, William Bailsman and Charles Hall, .held July 2d, 1776, Edward Shippen was chosen president of the committee. He had been chief burgess of the borough of Lancaster for some, years, and was acting in that capacity in 1763, when the Conestoga Indians were massacred by the Paxton rangers. Edward Shippen,
OF LANCASTER COUNTY - 525
with other of the leading citizens, were attending church at the time the work of destruction was going on, and before they were able to reach the scene, the Patton boys¹ had again mounted their steeds and left the town.
¹ Massacre of the Conestoga Indians : The massacre of the Conestoga Indians by the Paxton boys, enacted within Lancaster county, is one of those events that attained a historical importance second to none that ever transpired in the county limits. It is one of those scenes of history that to be understood requires a resume of facts generally lost sight of. Pennsylvania having been settled by the Quakers, it can readily be supposed on account of the persecutions they endured in England that this class of people would flock into the new asylum opened up by William Penn, in considerable numbers. The result was that they obtained control of the State government for many years; most of the State and county officers were members of this persuasion, except in the most western parts of the settlements. The majority of the assembly were Quakers, and, indeed, their policy shaped the affairs of the State nearly up to the commencement of the Revolution. The Scotch-Irish, a numerous body of early settlers, were found mostly upon the borders of the settlements ; and being a bold, daring, and adventuresome class of people, they were encouraged by the government to choose their homes in those localities, as being the best adapted to buffet Indian collision. After, the breaking out of the conspiracy of Pontiac, in 1762, the tide of Indian warfare began to rise in the west, and during 1763 the border settlements of Pennsylvania became the scenes of the most appalling desolation and distress that had ever yet been witnessed in those regions. It would be a lengthy task, and revolting to explore through all the details the horrid monotony of blood and havoc presented in the history of Indian brutality and carnage brought upon the white settlers of Pennsylvania at this doleful period. The settlements were filled with the wildest dismay and horror. The people, such as could escape, left their homes in consternation and fled in thousands to the settlements further east. Lancaster county was filled with refugees who had escaped for their lives, leaving the settlements one vast charnel receptacle, filled with the bones of their murdered relatives and kinsmen.
The scene presented in some of the settlements, beggars description. Ranging parties who visited in bodies the sights of desolation, discovered with unspeakable horror in the depths of the forest, the half consumed bodies of men and women still bound fast to trees where they had perished in fiery torture. Here lay the lifeless trunks of fathers and brothers who had fallen in an unequal contest, striving to resist the surging wave of Indian fury; and there, rolled in a common mass, were the mangled corpses of mothers, sisters and children, whose blood the tomahawks of the savage had drunk. It was a sad but maddening sight. A wail of agony rose to heaven over the scenes of desolation; but a resolve of revenge was then formed bitter, burning and unquenchable revenge, that retaliation should be obtained for such fiendish cruelties. The back woods rangers, who visited the scenes described, swore a solemn
526 - BIOGRAPHICAL HISTORY
SHIPPEN, HENRY, was captain of the company that marched to Baltimore in 1814, in which were James Buchanan, Jasper Slaymaker and others. He read law in the office of James Hopkins, but his tastes being of a military
oath of vengeance never to sheath their sabers ere the heart's blood of their assailants, the savages of the forest, was spilled. An eye witness who saw the desolation that followed in the wake of Indian aggression, said " The Indians had set fire to the houses, barns, corn, hay, and in short, to everything that was combustible, so that the whole country seemed to be one general blaze. The miseries and distress of the poor people were really shocking to humanity, and beyond the power of language to describe. Carlisle was become the barrier, not a single individual being beyond it. Every stable and hovel in the town was crowded with miserable refugees, who were reduced to a state of beggary and despair ; their houses, cattle and harvest destroyed; and from a plentiful, independent people, they were become real objects of charity and commiseration. It was most dismal to see the streets filled with people in whose countenances might be discovered a mixture of grief, madness and despair; and to hear, now and then, the sighs and groans of men, the disconsolate lamentations of women, and the screams of children who had lost their nearest and dearest relatives. On both sides of the Susquehanna, for some miles, the woods were filled with poor families and their cattle, who make fire and live like the savages." Conspiracy of Pontiac, p. 382.
The Scotch-Irish, in whose settlements it was that this desolation reigned, implored the government of Pennsylvania to aid them in resisting Indian aggression. But "the Quakers, who seemed resolved that they would neither defend the people of the frontier nor allow them to defend themselves, vehemently inveighed against the several expeditions up the Susquehanna, and denounced them as seditious and murderous. Urged by their blind prejudice in favor of the Indians, they insisted that the bands of the tipper Susquehanna were friendly to the English; whereas, with the single exception of a few Moravian converts near Wyoming, who had not been molested, there could be no rational doubt that these savages nourished a rancorous and malignant hatred against the province. But the Quakers, removed by their situation from all fear of the tomahawk, securely vented their spite against the borderers and doggedly closed their ears to the truth. Meanwhile the people of the frontier besieged the Assembly with petitions for relief ; but little heed was given to their complaints." Conspiracy of Pontiac, p. 391-8. It was well ascertained that at least two thousand persons had been killed or carried off from the settlements on the border. This loss was one that the Scotch-Irish population had to endure. Goaded to desperation by their long continued suffering, they were divided between rage against the Indians and resentment against the Quakers, who had yielded them cold sympathy and inefficient aid. They complained fiercely that they were interposed as a barrier between the rest of the province and a ferocious enemy, and that they were sacrificed to the safety of men who
OF LANCASTER COUNTY - 527
cast and not succeeding to his expectation, he made an effort to obtain a situation in the army, but was unsuccessful. He removed to Huntingdon and practiced law there for some years. He married a Miss Elizabeth Evans, of Sunbury.
looked with indifference on their miseries and lost no opportunity to extenuate and smooth away the cruelties of their destroyers. They declared that the Quakers would go further to befriend a murdering Indian than to succor a fellow countryman.
It is not difficult to conceive the depth of feeling that would exist in a community situated as were the Scotch-Irish at that early period. They had besought aid of the Assembly in vain. They had also asked that the Indians living in the interior of the white settlements be removed, as they regarded all those professing friendship as spies and harborers of their enemies. To all these requests the Quaker Assembly turned a deaf ear. The Quakers clung to their policy of non-resistance, and left the borderers to shift for themselves as best they could. The rancor that rose on the part of the Scotch-Irish towards the Quakers and their policy was of the bitterest kind. Never was hatred more deep and general than on the Pennsylvania frontier at this period ; and never did so many collateral causes unite to inflame it to madness. It was by no means confined to the vulgar. Magistrates, and even the clergy shared it, and it is not surprising that it found a vent. In the Manor of Conestoga, about five miles; from Lancaster, was a small band of Indians, chiefly of Iroquois blood, that had resided there since the first settlement of the province. These Indians William Penn had visited and made treaties with them, which had been ratified by subsequent governors. They had remained on terms of friendship with the English.. The community had greatly decreased in membership, and no longer numbered over twenty individuals. These were clustered together in miserable huts, and were in the habit of gathering a pitiable subsistence by beggary and a petty merchandizing amongst the white settlers of the country around them. The men spent most of their time in fishing and hunting, and loitering around in idleness. In their neighborhood they passed for innocent vagabonds.
Among the Scotch-Irish, on the contrary, they were looked upon as spies ; and as guilty of giving shelter to scalping parties, and even in aiding their enemies in their depredations. That they were not altogether wrong in their opinions was proven by a mass of testimony ; though the treachery may have been confined to one or two individuals.. The exasperated frontiersmen were not in a mood to discriminate between the innocent and guilty. They did not think these Indians should be permitted to occupy a position where they would have it in their power to do them injury. They belonged at least to that hated race that had brought so much misery upon themselves and their countrymen. A body of rangers, whose headquarters was the little town of Paxton, on the east bank of the Susquehanna, became noted about this time for their zeal and efficiency in defending the borders. John Elder, a Presbyterian clergyman of great worth and piety of character, had
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Afterwards, through the influence of Molton C. Rogers, Secretary of State under Governor Shultz, he was appointed President Judge of the court of common pleas of one of the western judicial districts. He died March 2, 1839.
influenced the formation of this band, as it became necessary to have of them guards around the church while he was engaged in the performance of divine service. This band of rangers was composed of the best men in the community ; they were orderly and upright citizens, as the Rev. John Elder himself testified. One of their principal leaders was Matthew. Smith, a man of influence and popularity amongst his associates, and one by no means destitute of culture, and yet who at the same time shared a full proportion of the general hatred against the Indian race, and suspicion against the band at Conestoga.
About the middle of December a scout called upon Smith and informed him that an Indian who had been committing depredations in the neighborhood had been tracked to Conestoga. Having communicated this to five of his companions, they armed, mounted and set out for the Indian settlement, where they arrived in the night. Smith dismounted from his horse and crawled forward cautiously until he saw, or imagined he saw, a number of armed warriors in the cabins. He returned, and related this to his companions, but fearing that they were too weak to attack the party, returned with all speed to. Paxton. Their blood being now up, they determined to extirpate the Conestogas. Messengers were sent in all directions, and on the following day fifty armed men, chiefly from Donegal and Paxton, assembled at the place agreed upon. They set out with Smith as their leader, and arrived at Conestoga before daylight on the morning of the fourteenth. As they neared the place they perceived the light of a fire in one of the cabins, and having fastened their horses, they cautiously advanced towards the light. An India having heard the noise of their footsteps or voices, advanced to s whence the noise came. As soon as he came near, one of the men, fancying that he recognized him, exclaimed with an oath, "He is the one that killed my mother," and firing his rifle brought the Indian to the ground. With a general shout they now all rushed forward and closed the career of all the Indians they could find. There were but six of them the remainder, in accordance with their vagrant habits, being scattered about the neighborhood. They closed their vengeance at this place by burning all the cabins, and set out for home by the dawn of day. Th morning was cold, and snow was falling and covered the ground to a considerable depth. They were met by a man named Thomas Wright, who somewhat struck by their appearance, began a conversation with them. They freely, and without compunction, told him all they had (lone. Proceeding some distance further they began to scatter around amongst the settlers in order to obtain some food for themselves and horses. Several of them rode. to the house of Robert Barber, a prominent settler, near Wright's Ferry, who seeing the strangers shaking the snow from their blanket coats, invited them to enter, and caused refresh pleats to be set before them. Having remained a short time seated
OF LANCASTER COUNTY - 529
SHIRK, HENRY, was elected County Commissioner in 1810, and reelected again in 1819.
SHOCH, SAMUEL, of Columbia, was born in Harrisburg .on the 28th of May, 1797. His opportunities of education
around the fire, they remounted and rode off through the snow storm. Whilst they were in the house, a boy belonging to the family had gone out where the horses were standing, and coming in reported that he had seen a tomahawk covered with blood hanging to the saddle of each, and also a gun belonging to one of the Indian children. Barber at once suspected the truth, and having given information to his neighbors, a company of them started off to the Indian settlement, where they found the cabins in ashes and the charred remains of the slaughtered Indians. While they were there the sheriff of Lancaster county with a party of men arrived at the place ; and the first object of that officer was to send through the neighborhood and gather up the Indians that had escaped-fourteen in number. The survivors as soon as they learned the fate of their friends were in great terror for their own lives, and earnestly begged protection. They were brought to Lancaster, amidst the greatest excitement, and lodged in the county jail, a strong stone building, and one. which was deemed sufficient to afford the amplest protection.
News of the massacre was immediately 'sent to Philadelphia, upon the hearing of which the governor at once issued a proclamation denouncing the act, and offering a reward for the arrest of the perpetrators. But in the excited state of public feeling at that time arrests were out of the question, as resistance would have been offered to any force that might have been sent into the Scotch-Irish settlements. Nothing daunted by the Governor's proclamation, the Paxton rangers determined to complete the work they had begun. In this determination they were incited by a prevailing impression that one of the Indians that had found protection at Lancaster had murdered the relatives of one of their number. They despatched a spy to learn the condition of affairs at Lancaster, and upon his return they again assembled at the usual rendezvous. On this occasion the leader of the party was a Lazarus Stewart, a young man highly esteemed on the borders for his heroic qualities and chivalrous deportment. Early on the 27th of December the party, about fifty in number, left Paxton on their work of death. About three o'clock in the afternoon, armed with rifle, knife and tomahawk, they rode into Lancaster at a gallop, turned their horses into the yard of a public house, and proceeded forthwith to the jail. In a moment the doors were burst open and they rushed in. The Indians were at the time in a small yard adjacent to the building, and surrounded by strong walls. Hearing the noise and alarmed by the sight of armed men in the doorway, two or three of them grasped billets of wood in self-defence. This show of resistance doubly maddened the foremost of the party, and rushing forward they fired their rifles amongst the Indians, huddled in a corner. The tomahawk soon ended the struggle, and the " Quaker pets," as they termed them, lay weltering in their gore.
The magistrates being in church, attending the Christmas service,
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were limited to the schools of that place and the West Nottingham academy, in Cecil county, Maryland, under the presidential care of the Rev. Doctor Magraw. In 1814, when the British army destroyed the capitol at Washington,
which had been postponed from the twenty-fifth, a messenger suddenly appeared at the church door, and in broken exclamations was heard to say : "Murder—the jail—the Paxton boys—the Indians." The assembly broke up in disorder, and Edward Shippen, the chief burgess, hastened towards the scene; but before he could reach it, all was over, and the rangers had remounted and were galloping from the town. The sheriff and the coroner had mingled with the rangers, and as their enemies alleged, aided and abetted them in their work of destruction, but they contended that they were endeavoring to save the Indians. The people crowded into the jail to gaze at the. dead Indians, and when their curiosity was sated they gathered their bodies together and buried them not far from the town. There their bones reposed until the railroad was being made through the city, when they were disinterred by the workmen. The massacre of the Indians occasioned a vast clamor . when it reached Philadelphia, and the Governor issued another proclamation, probably to allay Quaker feeling, for he could not but have known that nothing else would be gained. It would have been madness to attempt to make any arrests of parties engaged in the transaction and the best evidence that all thought so is, that no attempt was mad until years afterwards, when all the excitement had died away.
This event of history can be regarded justly in no other light than a an exhibition of the pent up rage against the Indians for the atrocities committed on the white settlers, and partially out of vengeance towards the Quakers, because of their unaccountable attachment to the Indians in preference to the whites, as it was regarded. It can not, and should not be viewed as the work of a vulgar mob. It was none such. It was simply the reflex of the public opinion as it existed amongst the settlers on the borders. Would any of the rangers who perpetrated the deed have been punished by a jury of their Scotch-Irish neighbors had the been placed on trial ? They had the power to punish them, if they had the will, but this was wanting. Did Lazarus Stewart, or Matthew Smith sink in public estimation for the part they had figured in the transaction ? Let the history of those days answer the question. They received the endorsement of high character and standing from the leading men on the border, clergymen and others. We should endeavor therefore, to place ourselves in imagination in their circumstances before passing too harsh a judgment upon them. That the Quakers should condemn them is not strange. Does not every violent party man, condemn-those of the opposite party ? So in this case. The Quakers formed the one party in Pennsylvania, and which, at this time, they governed, an they endeavored to decry their opponents, the Scotch-Irish, for the' sanctioning the Paxton massacre. Feeling became intensified, because the event was seized by one party for the injury of the other. Party rage gave the transaction its historical importance.
OF LANCASTER COUNTY - 531
he volunteered and served three months in the army under the immediate command of Captain Richard M. Crain, of the Harrisburg Artillerists. He was employed two years as clerk in the land department at Harrisburg. In 1820 he was admitted to practice law at the bar of Dauphin county. In 1835 he was elected Clerk of the House of Representatives, and in 1837 was made secretary to the convention to amend the Constitution of the State of Pennsylvania. In 1839 he was appointed cashier of the Columbia Bank and Bridge Company, which afterwards became the Columbia National Bank, of which he still has charge. He at one and the same time served as President of the following companies and organizations, viz: the Common School Board in Columbia; the Columbia and Marietta turnpike road company ; the Columbia and Chesnut Hill turnpike road company ; the Columbia and Washington turnpike road company ; the Columbia water company, and the Columbia gas company ; and, also, as treasurer of the Reading and Columbia railroad company ; director of the poor of Lancaster county, and of the Wrightsville, York and Gettysburg railroad company, and trustee of the Normal School, at Millersville; likewise cashier of the Columbia National Bank. He has also served a term as county auditor of Lancaster county, and fills most of the above posts at the present time. He has also been .president of the old Columbia public ground company.
SHREINER, MARTIN, was born in Lancaster, January 23d, 1767. His father, Philip Shreiner, emigrated from Germany at an early day, and bought the property yet owned by Martin Shreiner, the grandson of the original proprietor. Martin Shreiner, the subject of this notice, learned the trade of a clock-maker with John Eberman, grandfather of Peter G. Eberman, esq. He was an apprentice of Mr. Eberman at the time the latter manufactured the old town clock. He began and carried on his business in the same place now occupied and owned by his son. He continued in this business up to 1829, and then began the manufacturing of engines. In 1818 Martin Shreiner was elected by the City Councils, one of the first street regulators of Lancaster, anti.
532 - BIOGRAPHICAL HISTORY
was reelected to this position in 1819. One of the first engines manufactured by him, was that made for a hose company of Lebanon. The Sun engine and hose company, one of the two oldest fire companies in Lancaster city, having used their engine from 1798 up till 1829, determined upon procuring a new one. Martin Shreiner was employed by the company to build an engine at an expense not to exceed eight hundred dollars. In December, 1830, the following appears upon the minutes of this company : " The committee appointed to procure a new fire engine from Martin Shreiner for this company, reported that they had received the same from Martin Shreiner, which engine upon fair trial, fully answered the expectation of the company as to beauty and excellence of workmanship and power of throwing water, and that it had been placed in the engine house at the disposal of the company."
In the year 1829 Martin Shreiner and Peter Reed were elected on the Anti-Masonic ticket, directors of the poor of Lancaster county. He was for many years an active and .4 influential member of the City Councils, and in 1832 he was one of the committee who were instrumental in having the Columbia and Philadelphia railway brought through the city of Lancaster. In 1834 he built the celebrated " American fire engine" with two chambers, eight and a-half inches in diameter, which at its first trial forced the water to the ball of the Lutheran steeple, two hundred feet high. He afterwards re-built the Middletown, Litiz and Columbia engines. He was a member of the Lutheran church, and it was greatly through his influence that the German Lutheran church, in Vine street, was erected in 1826. About the year 1836 he laid out and established the first cemetery in Lancaster, which bears his name; and because no restriction was imposed as to the interment of persons of color therein, the late Thaddeus Stevens chose it as his last resting place. The cemetery was beautifully ornamented by the care of the venerable patriarch in life, and his monument now is one of the chief places of interest within its enclosure. He died February 14th, 1866, at the ripe age of 97 years and 22 days.
OF LANCASTER COUNTY - 533
SHULTZ, DAVID, was born in Dauphin county, Pennsylvania, May 28, 1805. His education was limited, having had no early advantages. He learned the hatting business with Jacob Ziegler, of Harrisburg, and traveled for several years in the capacity of journeyman. He moved to New Holland in 1824, and in 1829 began business for himself, which he continued up to 1852. He became an active politician, and frequently filled minor trusts in the gift of the people. He often represented his party in the county conventions. He was appointed in 1847 the first mercantile appraiser in Lancaster county, and was twice reappointed. In 1852 he was elected treasurer of Lancaster county, and held the same for two years. After moving to Lancaster in 1852 he carried on the hatting business in the latter place up to 1856. He next entered into partnership in the banking business with Hiester, Henderson and Reed. The firm name was John K. Reed & Co., and it continued up till 1861. In 1862 he moved west upon a farm, and was engaged in, agricultural pursuits till 1866, when he sold his farms and returned again to Lancaster, where he has since been living, chiefly in retirement.
SHULZE, JOHN ANDREW, was a native of Lancaster (now Lebanon) county, Pa. He was educated for a clergyman, and filled the pulpits of several Lutheran congregations for some years, during the early part of his manhood, but he was obliged to relinquish them in consequence of some physical affection which disabled him from frequent speaking. Sometime afterwards he took up his residence in the borough of Lebanon, and he soon became somewhat prominent as a politician of the Democratic school. After Lebanon became formed into a separate county he received the appointment of prothonotary, the duties of which he discharged for a number of years. In 1822 he was nominated as the Democratic candidate for the State Senate, and triumphantly elected. In 1823 he was elected Governor of Pennsylvania, over Andrew Gregg, the Federal candidate, by nearly 26,000 majority. In 1826 he was reelected to the same office, without recognized opposition, receiving nearly 73,000 votes out of 75,000 polled. It was during his administration that the system of public improvements was com-
534 - BIOGRAPHICAL HISTORY
menced, and if his prudent and cautious recommendations had been followed by the Legislature, to finish one line of canal before commencing another, the commonwealth would have been saved from a large portion of the debt which afterwards weighed so heavily upon her citizens.
To Governor Shulze belongs the credit; which is usually accorded to his successor, of having been the first to advocate a general system of education. In his message of 1828 he said : " The mighty works, and consequent great expenditures undertaken by the State cannot induce me to forbear again calling attention to the subject of public education. To devise means for the establishment of a fund, and the adoption of a plan, by which the blessings of the more necessary branches of education should be conferred on every family within our borders, would be every way worthy of the Legislature of Pennsylvania, and attention to this subject at this time would seem to be peculiarly demanded by the increased number of children and young persons who are employed in manufactures. The establishment of such principles would not only have the happiest effects in cultivating the minds, but invigorating the physical constitutions of the young. What nobler incentive can present itself to the mind of a republican legislator, than a hope that his labor shall be rewarded by insuring to his country a race of human beings, healthy and of vigorous constitutions, and of minds more generally improved than fall to the lot of any considerable portion of the human family." Far from a brilliant statesman who could sway the multitude by his eloquence, Governor Shulze, nevertheless, possessed administrative ability which enabled him to preside over the affairs of the commonwealth with credit to himself and satisfaction to the public.
Few Governors have left the executive chair with as large a share of personal popularity and carrying with them into retirement less personal and political animosity towards them than did the subject of our notice. Conservative in all his views, honest and straightforward in all his acts, he commanded the confidence of the people and never abused it. His was not a brilliant, but a judicious, faithful and useful
OF LANCASTER COUNTY - 535
career. Unable to agree with all the measures of his party, he had the integrity and the independence to array himself against anything he conceived to be wrong. He was educated in the Jeffersonian school of politics, and was, therefore, in feeling and sentiment, an old school Republican. He favored all the conservative Republican measures, of which Jefferson, Madison and Monroe had been the champions. With his old party friends he came to differ, however, on the question of home protection, and after his retirement from office he became affiliated with the Anti-Masonic party in sentiment. He was in 1839 chosen one of the Senatorial electors of the Anti-Masonic party. After his retirement from office in 1829 he removed to Lycoming county, where, in consequence of some unfortunate investments he lost all he had saved, and became exceedingly poor. He thereupon removed to Lancaster, at which place he continued to reside in quiet retirement until his death, which event occurred November 19, 1852. He lies buried in Woodward Hill Cemetery, Lancaster city, and a handsome monument erected in honor of him by his numerous friends, points out to the visitor his last resting place. Requiescat in pace.
SHUMAN, JACOB A., was born in Manor township, Lancaster county, in the year 1814. Losing his parents at an early age, he hired himself out for a short time to work upon a farm, but at the age of fourteen he apprenticed himself to learn the coopering business with one of his uncles. Upon the expiration of his term of apprenticeship, being but seventeen years of age, he started on a trip to the west, footing it over the Alleghenies to Pittsburg. He stopped a short time in that city and worked at his trade. From that place he proceeded to Cincinnati. Arriving there at a time when the cholera was raging, he had a severe attack of this disease and barely escaped with his life. After an absence of two years, he returned to his native home and began work at his trade for his old master. About this time an event occurred which proved the turning point in his career. A cousin of his own, who was engaged in teaching school, died after a short illness. During his cousin's illness, and at his re, quest, Mr. Shuman took charge of his school, and after his
536 - BIOGRAPHICAL HISTORY
death, at the request of the citi7,ens of the district, he continued the school. His career in teaching was from that time up to 1845, almost continuous ; all his leisure, however, was devoted to study. In 1844-45 he was nominated and elected by the Whig party of his native county, as a
414 member of the Legislature. He proved himself in this position a creditable representative, was watchful. of the interests of his constituents, and merited their approbation and esteem. After the expiration of his term of services in the House of Representatives, he continued teaching and also. engaged in agricultural pursuits. About 1850 he abandoned teaching entirely, and now devoted his whole attention to farming. In 1854 he was elected a member of the Senate of Pennsylvania. As a senator, he was modest and unassuming,. and rarely obtruded himself upon the attention of the Senate unless a question was pending that immediately affected the interests of his constituents.
*SLAYMAKER FAMILY. Mathias Slaymaker, (originally in German Sehleiermacher,) the ancestor of the family in this county, was a native of Strasburg, Germany, and emigrated to this country about the year 1710. He and his 1 family settled on a tract of about 1,000 acres, known as the "London Lands," situated in Strasburg, now Paradise township, which he purchased from a company called the " London Company," and built a log house or cabin close to a large spring on the farm, and near the residence of the late Wm. Eckert, in said Paradise township ; a large portion of the said 1,000 acre tract being still in the name. He left two brothers in Germany, one of whom, a clergyman, was Secretary of Legation from his government to the Court of St. James; afterwards Charge d'Affaires to the same place. The other was a major in the King of Prussia's tall regiment. Matthias Slaymaker had an excellent German education, and , in person was remarkable for his almost gigantic stature and great strength, as were also his sons, which qualities in those primitive times commended them to their neighbors, and won the respect of the Indians, who were then numerous in the neighborhood. He gave the name to Stras-
*Contributed by Nathaniel E. Slaymaker, esq.
OF LANCASTER COUNTY - 537
burg township, and contributed greatly towards the permanent settlement and improvement of the county, which was then " back-woods," and inhabited by Indian tribes. He died at an advanced age, and lies buried at the old Leacock Presbyterian church, in Leacock township, which has been the burying-ground of almost all his numerous descendants for six generations. He left five sons, Lawrence, Matthias, John, Henry and Daniel ; and two daughters, Margaret and Barbara.
LAWRENCE SLAYMAKER joined a company of pioneers going west, and was not afterwards heard from.
MATTHIAS SLAYMAKER purchased that portion of the aforesaid 1,000 acre tract, belonging at present to his great-grandsons, Jno. M. Slaymaker and Nathaniel E. Slaymaker, esq., the latter at present and for many years past secretary and treasurer of the Lancaster County Mutual Insurance Company.
DANIEL SLAYMAKER and his descendants o wiled Esc land now belonging to Uriah, Keziah and Levina Eckert.
JOHN SLAYMAKER, one of said sons, and father of the late Capt. Jno. Slaymaker, of Paradise township, was a soldier in Braddock's army at the age of twenty-two years, and took part in the disastrous battle of Braddock's field. He was also captain of a company in the Revolutionary war, and after his return home was chosen county commissioner, which ended his public service. He died in 1798, aged 65 years.
HENRY SLAYMAKER, another of said sons, was an active mid conspicuous Whig during the Revolutionary war, being among the first in the neighborhood to take his stand with the Republic. Being a magistrate at the time, he administered the oath of allegiance to those who espoused the cause, and was prompt in suppressing any efforts on the part of the Tories at insurrection, and in punishing them for furnishing the British army horses and provisions. After Mr. Hubley became incapable of trying causes, Henry Slaymaker, being then the oldest justice in the county, was appointed principal judge of the courts of Lancaster county, and presided one year. He assisted in clearing the ground on which the old
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538 - BIOGRAPHICAL HISTORY
jail in Lancaster was erected, and the present site of Fulton Hall; and was a delegate to the convention for framing a constitution of the State of Pennsylvania, which met at Philadelphia, July 15th, 1776.
AMOS SLAYMAKER, a son of Henry, also served in the Revolutionary war as ensign of the company commanded by -his uncle, Captain John Slaymaker, before mentioned, and was a member of an association for suppressing the Tories in the eastern end of the county, at, the head of which was Colonel James Mercer. He was a magistrate for many years ; county commissioner in the year 1800; a member of the House of Representatives in 1810-11; and afterwards of the Senate of Pennsylvania from 1806 until 1810 ; and a member of Congress of the United States from 1814 until 1815, at which time he, with a number of others, lent their credit to the government, by endorsing for it when in financial difficulties. He and his two brothers, Henry and Samuel, were proprietors of the great stage line of Reeside, Slaymaker Co., from Philadelphia to the west, before the time of railroads. He died in 1835, aged 85 years. He left six sons and four daughters ; one of his sons, Jasper, was a leading member of the Lancaster bar, and the first prosecuting attorney of the Mayor's court. He also served two years in the State Legislature 1816-17 and 1817-18, and died at the age of 39 years.
JONATHAN S. SLAYMAKER, a son of Samuel R Slaymaker, late of York county, Pa., and grand-nephew of Amos Slay-maker, before mentioned, was captain of a company in the 2d Iowa regiment in the late civil war, and was killed at the taking. of Fort Donelson, where he showed exemplary bravery.
SLOKOM, SAMUEL, was elected commissioner of Lancaster county in 1865. He has acted for many years as justice of the peace of the county. The following is from the pen 4 of one knowing Mr. Slokom for years : " Samuel Slokom is a man of strong practical sense, and as a business man has few superiors. He possesses great force of character and wonderful energy, and is, an untiring worker in whatever he undertakes. His judgment in matters of every-day life is
OF LANCASTER COUNTY - 539
greatly superior to the average of men, and is so recognized among those who know him. He is strong in his likes and dislikes ; is a warm and devoted friend, and a bitter enemy. Without any brilliant talents, or superior cultivation, he is a gentleman of unusual intelligence and ability. His intuitive knowledge of human nature is one of the most marked features of his character, and has, no doubt, been an important agency in his career."
SLOKOM, THOMAS, son of Isaac Slokom, was born in Virginia, and removed to Lancaster county about the year 1798. The ancestors of Isaac Slokom were amongst the first settlers of the Wyoming valley, but removed thence to Virginia, prior to the Indian massacre in that colony. Thomas Slokom married a descendant of Jacob Miller, of Strasburg township.¹ He was an enterprising and useful man in his day and generation. He erected the " Red Lion Hotel," in Sadsbury township, and made many other useful and valuable improvements. He was the father of Samuel Slokom, late commissioner of Lancaster county.
SLOUGH, MATHIAS, was an active Whig of the borough of Lancaster, about the period of the Revolution. He was an innkeeper, and kept tavern at the southeast corner of Centre Square. The house, when kept by Slough, was erected of what were called " saw-bucks," or cross-pieces, and the interstices were filled with bricks. He was a man of considerable worth, and had sufficient taste in that early day to give his family a good education. His daughter Fanny, was an accomplished pianist, and her sweet music often attracted crowds in the evenings to listen to the harmonious melody of her strains. One of her favorite pieces was " The Rose Tree in Full Bloom." In that day there were but few pianos in Lancaster. Mathias Slough was coroner in 1763, and it was he who held the inquest upon the bodies of the Conestoga Indians, killed by the Paxton boys. He
¹ Jacob Miller was born in the year 1663, and emigrated to Pennsylvania, and purchased a large tract of land in Pequea valley (now Strasburg township). The warrant bears date October 10th, 1710. Jacob Miller's son Samuel, was the first child born in the Swiss colony. Henry Miller, one of the descendants of Jacob Miller, was a member of the convention that framed the constitution of Pennsylvania.
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was in 1776 appointed, by the assembly of Pennsylvania, general agent for the province of Pennsylvania, to provide the necessary clothing and accouterments for the troops ordered to be raised for the service of the province. He also had command of a Lancaster battalion in the years 1776-7. He was a member of the Pennsylvania Legislature during the years 1774, 1775, 1777, 1780, 1781, 1782 and 1783.
SMILIE, JOHN, was a native of Ireland, and came to America when a young man, shortly before the outbreak of the Revolution, but in what year we cannot ascertain. Ile settled in Lancaster county, Pa., and at once espoused the cause of American liberty. He rapidly acquired the confidence of his co-patriots, and soon became a leader in the resistance which they resolved and executed against the tyrannies of the King and Parliament. Being one of the committee of safety of Lancaster county, we find him in June, 1776, a member of the Provincial Conference of county committees of Pennsylvania at Philadelphia, which declared formally the sundering of the ties which hitherto bound the colony to the parent power, by resolving "to form a new government for this province, upon the authority of the people only." This conference called and provided for the convention which framed our first State constitution—that of 1776. In 1778, and again in 1779, he was elected one of the representatives of Lancaster county in the Assembly, of which he was an active and useful member.
Having married Miss Janet Porter, a daughter, we believe, of Col. Thomas Porter, a distinguished citizen of Lancaster county, he was induced in 1780, to seek a home in the west for his rising family. In that or the subsequent year, he removed to Fayette, then Westmoreland county ; and after looking round for a time, eventually bought an improvement from old Joseph Huston, on the north side of the Yough river, about five miles below (Jonnellsville, where he settled and where he henceforth resided until his death. He perfected his title to the tract—about 400 acres—in 1786.
Mr. Smilie's energies and good sense soon gave him prominence in Fayette county. In 1784 he became the first elected member of the Assembly from Fayette county, and
OF LANCASTER COUNTY - 541
was reelected in 1785. In 1789 Mr. Smilie was, with Albert Gallatin, chosen to represent Fayette county in the State convention which framed the Constitution of 1790. In 1790 Mr. Smilie and John Hoge, of Washington, were elected the first State Senators from the district composed of Fayette and Washington counties. The term for which he was elected was four years ; but having in 1792 been elected to the third Congress of the United States, which was to meet in December, 1793, he resigned the last year of the Senatorial term. In 1798 Mr. Smilie was again elected to Congress. In 1801 Fayette and Greene were made the Ninth district, from which Mr. Smilie was successfully returned in 1802, 1804, 1806, 1808, 1810 and 1812. He died in the city of Washington while attending the second session of the twelfth Congress, on the 29th of December, 1812, and was on the 31st interred with the customary honors, in the Congressional Cemetery, where his remains yet repose, designated by one of the uniform monuments which Congiess erects to deceased members, even though their bodies be removed.
SMITH, ABRAHAM HERR, was born in Manor township, Lancaster county. His maternal grandfather, Abraham Herr, was the father of Benjamin Herr, familiarly known as " the King of the Manor." His father, Jacob Smith, was an ingenious millwright, and erected a number of flouring mills in Lancaster and York counties. He died in the year 1819. The ancestors of our subject, on both sides, came from Germany, on the Rhine, at the time of the Mylm and Herr emigration in 1710. They early became members of the Methodist church. Our subject received the early rudiments of his education at Litiz, under Professor Beck; next attended Haddington college, near Philadelphia, and graduated at Dickinson college, Carlisle, in the year 1840. He immediately began the study of law in the office of John R. Montgomery, and was admitted to the bar October 10th, 1842. He at once began the practice of his profession, and soon succeeded in establishing himself in a remunerative practice, which steadily increased until it has become one of the most lucrative in Lancaster county.
In 1843 he was elected to the Legislature of Pennsylva-
542 - BIOGRAPHICAL HISTORY
nia, and reelected in the following, year. During his service in that body, he was the, author of the bill providing for the payment of the interest on the State debt, a measure at the time essentially necessary to preserve the credit of the commonwealth. For two years preceding this time, the State instead of paying the interest upon her bonds, had issued certificates bearing interest, called " domestic credit scrip." This policy of compounding the debt, he deemed ruinous to the public credit, as the effect of it had been the sinking of the value of the bonds to 33 cents on the dollar, and repudiation had been openly advocated upon the floor of the House of Representatives.. When the bill came up for passage, Mr. Smith being asked by his colleagues whether he would vote. for it, and replying in the affirmative, added : " is it not right ?" "Certainly," they replied, "but it will be very unpopular, and will ruin any man who will vote for it." Mr. Smith then remarked that he " would vote for it, and have nothing to do with, consequences." Accordingly he warmly advocated the bill, and it became a law, and from that time the interest on the bonds was promptly met, the bonds rose to par, and are now selling above that, and have been for years. He also advocated the sale of the public works, which also became a law. It was he who introduced the bill for the abolition of the Mayor's court,¹ which, after being vetoed by the Governor several times, was finally passed and received executive sanction. He favored the, abolition of this court, determine it a useless expense upon the county ; and the business transacted in it has, since its abolition, been
¹ The Mayor's court was composed of the aldermen of the city of Lancaster and a Recorder appointed by the Governor, who presided as president of the court. The jury for the trial of causes was selected from the citizens of Lancaster city, and a district attorney appointed by the Governor, who prosecuted the pleas of the city. There were twelve jurors empaneled for the trial of each case. There were also a grand jury. The Mayor's court held quarterly sessions, the same as the Quarter Sessions, and had criminal jurisdiction over all cases occuring, within the city, except the highest grade of felonies. The expenses of this court were borne by the county, except the salary of the recorder, which came from the State treasury. His salary was $600. George Kline, esq., at present one of the ablest lawyers of the Lancaster bar, was at one time district attorney of the Mayor's court.
OF LANCASTER COUNTY - 543
more conveniently disposed of in the court of Quarter Sessions. Mr. Smith also refused to sanction the renewal of the district court ¹ when it had expired by limitation, and this was also abolished.
In 1815 he was elected to the State Senate, serving one term therein. Whilst a member of this body he favored the enactment of the married woman's act, passed in 1848. He also favored the passage of the law which made the common school system obligatory upon the districts of the county, and doing away with the triennial election, which permitted the voters of every district to accept or reject the system every three years. He regarded this as one of the defects of the school system, which required to be changed. He was ever strongly devoted to rigid economy and governmental reforms, wherever the same could be effected ; was a steady and faithful attendant at his post of duty, (scarcely an hour absent during the whole period of his service); and with patient attention and scrupulous fidelity watched the interests of his constituents. Since the close of his legislative career, he has sedulously devoted himself to the practice of his profession. In politics he is devoted to the principles of the Republican party, and was an abolitionist in sentiment long before the consolidation of the anti-slavery elements into that organization. As a student at Haddington college, he wrote an address for exhibition exercises so strongly antislavery, that the faculty declined to permit its delivery.
As a lawyer he is well read in his profession, and is very successful in the trial of his cases in the courts below, and also in the supreme court. In, short, he ranks amongst the ablest in his profession.² Besides, he is altogether conscientious in his professional career, and will decline a case unless his support of it can be based upon the broad principles of justice.
¹ The district court was a court of concurrent jurisdiction with the common plea, over which one judge alone presided.
² It should not be forgotten that in the Biographical History of Lancaster County the sketches have chiefly been confined to individuals who have filled certain official positions; and as regards such as came thus within the programme, they have in a few cases been spoken of as their deserts seemed, in the author's opinion, to merit, In very few instances,
544 - BIOGRAPHICAL HISTORY
SMITH, CHARLES, was a leading member of the Lancaster bar in his day, and was admitted in 1787. He was an ardent Federalist and a bitter opponent of the Republican principles of Jefferson. He was elected a member of the Legislature in the years 1806, 1807 and 1808. In 1816 he was elected to the State Senate of Pennsylvania. In his legislative capacity he ranked amongst the ablest men in the Senate and House of Representatives and bore a conspicuous part in the proceedings of the Legislature. He was appointed to and served as president judge of the ninth judicial district. He resigned this position' in 1820, and accepted the president judgeship of the district court of the city and county of Lancaster. He married a daughter of Judge Jasper Yeates, of the Supreme Court. He was the builder of the residence near Lancaster, known as Hardwicke.
SMITH, E. K., was elected a member of the Legislature I the year 1863. He is a banker of Columbia.
SMITH, FREDERICK, was elected Sheriff of Lancaster county in 1863.
*SMITH, JOHN BLAIR, the fourth son of the Rev. Robert Smith, was born at Pequea, Lancaster county, Pa., June 12th, 1756. In very early life he evinced a great thirst for knowledge, and an uncommon facility for acquiring it. At the age of sixteen he was admitted to the junior class in Princeton college, New Jersey, and graduated under the presidency of the distinguished Dr. Witherspoon in 1773. He was one
however, was this attempted, and but of those of whom personal knowledge enabled him to form an estimate. In the bulk of cases he felt himself incompetent for this task, and left the sketches with a simple Statement of facts. In the treatment of those so sketched, as already stated, it is not intended to unjustly elevate them over and above others equally worthy, who find no place in the history, but simply to express the truth, as near as may be, concerning the person so delineated. There are able members of the professions, and other intellectual men of whom no biographies appear in the work, inasmuch as they have never filled such official positions as brought them within the category of characters originally proposed to be sketched. All deserving a place in the history of the county could not be treated in a six-hundred page octavo, and no safer line of demarcation seemed feasible than that of official designation.
* Sprague!s Annals of the American Pulpit, vol. 3.
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of a class of twenty-nine, fourteen of whom became Ministers of the Gospel, and three, Governors of States. His elder brother, Samuel Stanhope Smith, having become the head of the rising institution in Prince Edward county, Va., under the care of the presbytery of Hanover, the subject of this notice went, at his suggestion, in the early part of 1776, to join his brother as an assistant teacher, and at the same time to prosecute his theological studies under his instruction. Having gone through his several trials, he was licensed to preach by the Hanover Presbytery on the 29th of April, 1778. He was ordained at Prince Edward Court House, on the 28th of October, 1779. At the same meeting of the Hanover presbytery, his brother having received an invitation to the chair of moral philosophy in Princeton college, New Jersey, asked leave to resign the presidency of Hampden Sydney college, and also his pastoral charge both of which requests were granted. John Blair Smith was immediately chosen to succeed him as president of the college ; and in the following spring, he also became his successor in the pastoral office. About this time Mr. Smith married a daughter of Colonel John Nash, of Prince Edward county, a lady distinguished alike for her accomplishments and piety. When Mr. Smith first entered the pulpit, he attracted much attention, yet he was by no means so popular as his brother who had preceded him ; but' before he left the State, he is said to have been more attractive and powerful than any other clergyman of Virginia from the time of Samuel Davies. The times in which he began his services in Virginia, were anything but favorable to the progress of religion and high spiritual attainment. The State, and that very part of it, had been invaded by the British ; and the minds of the people were occupied chiefly about their own safety and their country's independence. Mr. Smith was an earnest patriot, and withal, was a man of great activity and courage. The college suffered much in consequence of the war. Its resources were exhausted ; and the youth that had been pursuing their education, were in the service of their country.
After the ratification of peace it was some time before
546 - BIOGRAPHICAL HISTORY
religion and literature began to revive. About this time the Methodists began to pass through the country, and their preaching had the effect of winning many from the ranks of the Presbyterians. In 3786 or 1787 they came within the bounds of Mr. Smith's congregations, and he himself seemed henceforth to become imbued with their zeal and ardor in the gospel, and a fresh impulse was given to his religious feelings and ministrations. He began preaching with a vigor and enthusiasm that soon produced visible effects. An extensive revival of religion ensued, which spread through the college and the whole adjacent country. Mr. Smith entered into the work with such glowing zeal, and his preaching was so powerful that he was continually solicited to extend his labors, and to places more and more remote from his residence. Some of his friends began to think that he was less attentive to the concerns of the college than could be desired ; and this was the more, felt as the institution, being without funds, was required to depend for its support on the fees of the students. Feeling it his first duty to preach the gospel, and perceiving that he could not give that attention to the college that was required, he determined to resign the office of president of the institution, and give himself wholly to the work of the ministry. This resolution he carried into effect in the year 1789, and at the same time he bought a farm in the neighborhood and retired to it. In April, 1791, he was appointed by his presbytery one of the commissioners to attend the general assembly in Philadelphia. During the meeting of the assembly he was invited to preach in the. Third or Pine Street Presbyterian church, which was then vacant and looking out for a pastor. So acceptable was his preaching, that the congregation were called together, and a unanimous call was extended to him before he left the city, which he conditionally agreed to accept. When this became known to his Virginia congregations, they were greatly distressed, and did all in their power to divert him from his purpose. He felt, however, that his removal would add to the sphere of his usefulness, and h resigned his pastoral charge and removed to Philadelphia al the autumn following, and was installed over his new charge
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in December. In 1795 the degree of Doctor of Divinity was conferred upon him by his Alma Mater. In the same year Tinian college, at Schenectady, New York, was founded, and Dr. Smith chosen its president. He accepted the appointment, and for three years presided over the infant institution with great credit and success. He then returned to his former charge in Philadelphia, and was formally reinstated among. them in May, 1799. The following extract from a letter written by him to Major Morton, of Prince Edward county, Va., discloses the reason of his last change : " I suppose that my return to my former charge in Philadelphia, will excite some surprise among my friends. However, it can be explained upon a very natural principle, without ascribing it to fickleness of mind. It is simply because I prefer being pastor of a congregation, before being president of a college; and I think myself better qualified for the former than the latter ; and because I have regained that health and strength, the want of which only prevented me from staying in Philadelphia when I was there. It is true that I shall run a great risk, in the present circumstances and prospects of the city ; but it is equally true that my post would have been there, and I should have had my chance with the other citizens, if the want of health bad not compelled me to remove." " the Trustees of the college have accepted my resignation in a manner very respectful to me, and have directed that my portrait be taken and preserved in their hall. They insist upon my staying till after the commencement, next May, though I wish to go about the beginning of April." On his return to Philadelphia he was cordially greeted, not only by his own congregation, but by a large part of the intelligent people of the city. Their joy was destined soon to be turned into mourning. About the middle of August he was attacked with the yellow fever, and died on the 22d of the same month, one of the first victims or that terrible pestilence.¹
¹ When the constitution of the United States was submitted to the consideration of the people, Patrick Henry, the great orator of the Revolution, offered himself as a candidate for representative of Prince Edward county, in the State convention ; and he appointed a day to meet the people of the county at the Court House, to low the defects
548 - BIOGRAPHICAL HISTORY
SMITH, REV. SAMPSON, a native of Scotland, who emigrated to Lancaster county before the Revolution. He was pastor of the Presbyterian church, at Chestnut Level, and also taught an academy for many years. He was struck by lightning while sitting by his window engaged in reading the bible, and instantly killed.
SMITH, SAMUEL, was a member of the Legislature in the years 1737 and 1738.
*SMITH, SAMUEL STANHOPE, D.D., L.L.D., was born March 16th, 1750, at Pequea, Lancaster county, Penna. His father was the Rev. Robert Smith, a distinguished clergy. man of the Presbyterian church, who' emigrated from Ireland and established, and for many years superintended, an Academy, which supplied many able and excellent ministers to the denomination with which he was connected. His mother was Elizabeth, daughter of Samuel Blair, and sister of Samuel and John Blair, all of whom were among the most prominent clergymen of their day. The son, at a very early period, gave indications of possessing a mind of no common order, and the parents determined to give him the best advantages within their reach for cultivating it. When quite young he began the study of the languages in his father's school, and as his father had employed some of the most of the constitution, and the grounds on which he opposed it. Dr. Smith, who was a great friend of the constitution, had made his arrangements to be present at the meeting, and defend it against his attacks; but being called away at that hour to visit a sick friend, he employed a man to take down Mr. Henry's speech in short-hand, for his (Dr. Smith's) benefit. Within a week or two from that time, there was to be a public exhibition in college hall—an occasion always sure to draw together a large assembly. When the day arrived Patrick Henry, who lived in the neighborhood, came with the rest, little dreaming of the rod that had been prepared for him. One of the best speakers among the students came forward upon the stage and delivered Henry's phillipic against the constitution, almost exactly as he had delivered it at the Court House. Another immediately followed with a speech prepared by Dr. Smith, in which he had put all his energies in defense of the constitution. There was no intimation given that the two speeches were not written by the individuals who pronounced them. Henry was not a little annoyed by the procedure, and at the close of the exercise gave Dr. Smith to understand, in no equivocal terms, that he felt that an unfair advantage had
*Sprague's Annals of the American Pulpit, vol. iii.
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accomplished teachers from abroad as his assistants, there was perhaps no school in the country, at that day, that furnished better advantages for becoming thoroughly grounded., especially in the classics. The only language allowed to be spoken in the school-room, was Latin, and whoever uttered, a word in the mother tongue, was marked as a delinquent. Young Smith made the best of his opportunities, and was distinguished for his improvement in every branch to which he directed his attention. In his sixteenth year he was sent to Princeton college, entering the junior class, in which he immediately took rank amongst the best scholars. Shortly afterwards Dr. Witherspoon arrived from Scotland, and assumed the presidential chair of the institution, while the subject of our notice was an undergraduate. Before he had completed his eighteenth year he had received the degree of bachelor of arts, under circumstances the most honorable to his talents and acquirements, and the most gratifying to his ambition. During his collegiate career Mr. Smith came near making shipwreck of his religious principles, in consequence of his intimacy with Mr. Periam, the senior tutor, who had embraced Bishop Berkley's theory, denying the existence of matter. He became for a time an enthusiastic advocate of these opinions, insomuch that his friends began to have the most serious apprehensions that he had become a permanent accepter of the idealistic theory. When, how-
been taken of him. Dr. Smith contended that he bad no cause of complaint, unless his speech had been unfairly represented; and in that case he declared himself ready to make any amends in his power. Henry said that was not the ground of his complaint; for the young man certainly had taken his speech down with great accuracy; but he thought it was indelicate and improper that he should be placed in such circumstances before the audience, without any intimation having previously been given of what was intended. Dr. Smith replied that Colonel Henry knew it was his intention to have replied to him, when he spoke at the Court House, but was providentially prevented; that he had then spoken for public effect, and his speech became public property; that all that he could reasonably require was, that it should be fairly reported; and if that had been done,. he could not see that he had any just reason for complaint. Henry, however, was not at all satisfied, broke off all intercourse with him from that time, and would never hear him preach afterwards, though he had previously been one of his constant hearers.—Letter of Rev. William Hill.