Zimmerman Information

Family History of the Zimmermans Living in the Earls, Caernarvon, and other Townships in Lancaster County, Penn’a.

as gathered and written after a short and limited search in August, 1918, by Martin G. Weaver of New Holland, Pa., employed by the committee of the Zimmerman Reunion, held at the home of Martin M. Zimmerman in Ephrata Township, Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, August 21, 1918. To wit:

The greatest of all local historians, I. Daniel Rupp, in his famous collection of “Thirty Thousand Names of Immigrants into Pennsylvania from 1727 to 1776,” on page 431, and also in his “History of Lancaster County” on page 126, tells us of a Heinrich Zimmerman who came to Pennsylvania in 1698, and returned to Europe and brought his family over to America in 1706, and that his son, Emanuel, was born in that interval in Switzerland in 1702, and that the family moved from Germantown to Chester, now Lancaster County, in 1717.

From Ellis and Evans, “History of the County,” on page 822, we learn from a copy which they claim to be eleven years older than Rupp’s “History” that this Zimmerman, or Carpenter family lived in Germantown from 1706 to 1709, when they moved to what is now west Lampeter Township where they lived eight years, and finally bought a large tract of land and moved to what is now West Earl Township about in 1717, where the father built his new and permanent home near the present site of Carpenter’s Meeting House, and, besides managing and operating his large estates, practiced the art of a physician, which was very successfully taken up by many of his descendants; this copy tells us that he had several children, of whom [were] Emanuel, Henry, Jacob, John, and two daughters.

The descendants of this family are honored and very numerous, having held many offices of trust in the gifts from the people, and in professional life have attained the highest ranks of efficiency, while others tilled the soil of their forefathers and helped to make and develop the county in agricultural and business greatness to its present standard.

Their descendants are scattered far and wide, many of them sleep their long rest in the old cemetery by the historic old Church, but comparatively few reside in the immediate vicinity of the old homestead.

We however fail to, thus far, connect this older family with the Zimmermans, who later, about 1752, moved from Cocalico, near what is now Blainsport, in West Cocalico Township, to the extreme eastern end of Earl, now East Earl Township. These people arrived at Philadelphia 26 years after Henry Carpenter, or Zimmerman came the second time, and came to East Earl 35 years later than Heinrich and his family came to West Earl Township.

Among Rupp’s “Thirty Thousand Names”, we find the following Zimmermans (no Carpenters), who landed on the shores of Pennsylvania before 1755. There were two Hans, two Johannas Jacobs, three Han or John Adams, two Michael, two Christian, two John Christian, one each of John Jost, John Peter, John Frederick, John Michael, Nicol, Anthony, Simon, David, Balthas, Killian, Rudolph, Ulrich, Mathias, Hermanus, and Ludwig.

By this we can readily see how easy it is to get on the wrong track in taking up and following the lineage of any one of these three dozen of first arrivals, and how necessary it is for the genealogist to run along the thread, if he is once sure that he has the proper start, and how carefully he must watch all crosslines of others of the same name; and it is likewise apparent to us, that to think that all the Zimmermans in Lancaster County are the descendants of the same forefathers is a great terror.

In this paper we make no claims for any attempt but to follow briefly and incompletely a part of the lineage of two boys who landed at Philadelphia on the ship Pink Plaisance, whose master was John Paret, and came from Rotterdam, last from Cowes, with seventy-seven males and sixty-eight females over sixteen years of age, and twenty-eight boys and sixteen girls under sixteen years old on board, on Sept. 21, 1732, in all one hundred and eighty-eight persons.

On this same ship are listed Hans, Nicol, Ulrich, and John Zimmerman as over sixteen years, and Hans, Christian, and Bastian Zimmerman under sixteen years; of Nicol, Ulrich, John Adam, and Bastian, we will make no further mention in this paper but the older Hans and Salome, his wife, we believe [were] more than neighbor and friend to the two boys, Hans and Christian, in their new homes both in Cocalico and Earl Townships; I believe he was the boys’ uncle.

Tradition has it, (and I believe it to be correct), that the boys’ father’s name was Clause Zimmerman, and that he settled with his sons in Cocalico Township, and lies buried in Northern Lancaster or Southern Lebanon or Berks Counties in an unmarked grave which has never been located by his descendants; neither is there any record of his estate in Lancaster County which must at some future time be ferreted out in Lebanon, Berks County, Court Records or possibly in the Patent Office of early real estate deals, [which] might disclose his place of residence. He likely landed in America before 1727, and cannot be traced so easily.

After leaving the ship in 1732, the first record of Hans Zimmerman that we found was that on December 8, 1739: he bought by Patent Deed, 181 acres of land in Cocalico Township, which was partly mortgaged by him and his wife, Salome, and that he soon afterwards sold a large tract of land joined by his wife, Salome, to his brother, Peter Zimmerman.

This same Hans Zimmerman, on May 20, 1748, acquired by patent deed 151 acres of land in Earl Township, which is the first record of the Zimmermans owning land in that part of the Earls, this being also a part of the same farm which was afterwards owned by five succeeding Christian Zimmermans and is now partly owned by Jeremiah M. Martin, a lineal descendant of Hans Zimmerman, the brother of the first Christian Zimmerman, who must not be mistaken for the older Hans who never moved to Earl Township although he owned the first land here. He is mentioned several times on the records as a certain Hans Zimmerman, late of Cocalico Township, deceased, before 1753. This will necessarily be about the last mention of him and Salome his wife in this paper—their lineage was not traced to have figured with the two boys after the above mentioned facts. But if I would be allowed to have my guess I would venture the assertion that this man, the older Hans, and the younger Hans, and his brother Christian and possibly Peter, Hans, Son [?] were the Zimmermans who figured in the sandy soil of the Cocalico, or Long Swamp. They came across the hills to the Conestoga Valley in one early spring. Plowed for, and planted seven acres of corn and after properly cultivating the same raised a fine crop, and because of their having planted so much corn on one farm they were nicknamed (“Welshcorn, Zimmerman”) Corn Zimmermans, and that after this venture of corn cultivation on the older Hans’ farmland, the younger Zimmermans came to look around for an opening in the Valley of the Conestoga near the first purchase of that certain Hans Zimmerman, which was by him and his wife Salome, sold to the first Christian Zimmerman on June 9, 1752, which was all worked out before the said last mentioned sale was made to a general condition brought about by far sighted investors and risky adventurers which in reality was never more nor less than the strong hand of God, moving in a mysterious way, His wonders to perform, in giving His People a peaceful and quiet place of abode in these their new homes. So divinely laid out that each Nationality, every Church and different creed could worship God, without interference by the other so that we may by present and future generations attest like others in years gone by whether we were worthy of the great privilege thus bestowed upon us as different peoples.

The Welsh settlers poured into Lancaster County, from Montgomery and Philadelphia Counties from the east, and the upper Conestoga Valley, from the vicinity of Morgantown, on down by Churchtown, Spring Grove, as far west as the old Galt homestead, in East Earl Township, [and] were peopled by them thirty or more years before Hans and Christian Zimmerman came to the Earls, and the Weavers, Martins, Snaders and others were already well settled between the Conestoga and the Welsh Mountains twenty-five or a few more years, when they came; their settlement was Weberthal, four miles south west of the original Zimmerman homesteads. These conditions were strong invitation to the young Zimmerman families to live close to those of like religious faith.

Thomas Edwards, who afterwards was one of the first Judges of the Lancaster County Courts, owned 1300 acres of the land on both sides of the Conestoga and built his first log home at the big spring, the site later of the mansion house at Spring Grove, built by Cyrus Jacobs in 1800. To these possessions were added many acres to the east and south for his sons and daughters by new patents, until they had more land than was profitable and in 1746 there was suit brought for a debt against E. Edwards. In 1752 the landed possessions belonging to Edward Edwards, a son of Judge Edwards, were sold by Andrew Work, Sheriff of Lancaster County, at public sale to Hans Zimmerman of Cocalico Township, in all containing 668 acres of land, and covered all of the farm now occupied by Henry G. Horst, Phineas K. Ziemer’s estate. Joseph Martin, and the farm usually known as the “Aaron Stauffer farm” now owned by Martin M. Zimmerman, a lineal descendant of the said Hans, and part of the old homestead of the five Christian Zimmermans, now owned by Jeremiah M. Martin, before mentioned, and part of Henry E. Sauder’s farm and the greater part of the land which was covered by the large Spring Grove Forge dam and parts of many other smaller tracts south of the Creek and north of these farms which would be too lengthy to draw out. This large tract of land was nearly altogether bounded by Welsh settlers at the time of the transfer—Thomas and Evan Edwards, Nickolas Hudson, Morgan Evans and Hugh Davis, Henry Weaver, and the said Hans Zimmerman had land nearby and on this same tract is the historic old Zimmerman Graveyard where lies the first Hans and Christian and their wives. Hans died 1786 and Christian in 1787. And of the several hundred graves there marked, the greater number of them are lineal descendants of the two old pioneers. And these descendants gathered here today should see to it that this sacred spot should receive just a little more attention as time goes on. It is however in ordinary good condition. But experience teaches us that the average graveyards isolated in fields are shamefully neglected and in danger of being destroyed by the greedy, carelessness, and a lack of reverence for God and for the sainted dead. Graveyards at churches sometimes show the same course of neglect, but we have a marked improvement by all denominations along this line of Godliness and cleanliness. Graveyards reserve more attention than they did.

There were buildings on this tract and were occupied by the former owner, but where they were is not apparent at this time. But it is a well established and indisputable fact that Hans moved and lived with his family to the place where Henry G. Horst now lives and which was occupied and owned in the following rotation of ownership, to wit: Hans Zimmerman and Anna (Weaver) Zimmerman, his wife, who was a daughter of Henry Weaver, one of the first settlers of Weaverland who lived there and sold part [to] his son, Christian, who was a first cousin of the second Christian of the other line in 1772.

And the son Christian, whose wife was Barbara (Rutt), on November 7, 1807 sold by a binding agreement the farm, then containing 125 acres to his son, but he and his wife reserved a right to others in their new stone house during their lifetime. Christian Zimmerman (who this 2nd Christian was father of David, Peter, Emanuel, John, Martin, and Preacher Jacob W. Zimmerman, Barbara Martin, Annie Groff, and Elizabeth Ernst). But the said Christian tiring of his purchase, or for some other reason, sold his right title and interest in said purchase to his brother Jacob (who afterwards became minister and Bishop of the Mennonite Church of the Weaverland District, commonly known and spoken of as Bishop “Eachel” Zimmerman). Subject to all the agreements and payments and restrictions (which were many) and with the older Christian accepting said change by writing his wife, Barbara, soon after this died. This change of ownership was made on December 1, 1810 and his last payment was to have been made in 1823 and the Bishop kept the homestead until 1845 when he sold it to his two sons, Christian and Jacob Zimmerman. Subject to his life estate and other charges, he died on September 14, 1856. His children, Christian, Joseph, Jacob and Isaac Zimmerman and their sister Susanna Burkhart, wife of Isaac Burkhart, by mutual agreement set aside his last will and testament and by the transfer of Christian and Barbara Zimmerman, his wife, the title passed to Jacob Zimmerman who sold it to Preacher Samuel Good in 1860. Who in turn sold it to his son John G. Good, who’s wife was a grand daughter of the second Christian who owned it only a short time. From John G. Good it passed into the hands of Jonathan Martin, son of Deacon Henry Martin, who was also [of] lineal descent of said first Hans Zimmerman. But when Barton Horst bought that part which had the old mansion upon it, it passed out of the name and “freindtschaft” in and since April 1, 1910 it is owned by Preacher Frank W. Horst and his son Henry G. Horst.

Another part of this vast estate passed into the hands of Peter Zimmerman from his father and mother, Hans and Anna Zimmerman, and from him and his wife to their son Peter Zimmerman who also acquired all the lands of his brother Joseph. And in the spring of 1814, this second Peter Zimmerman sold his farm containing 71 acres (being the place before referred as now owned by Martin M. Zimmerman) and he with horses and wagons moved with his family and small children to the vicinity of Mechanicsburg, Cumberland County and that part of the old farm passed into the hands of John Shirk, who was a grandson of the first Christian Zimmerman of the other line and whose wife was Catherine, a daughter of John Weaver, and their children were Peter, John, Barbara, married to Jacob Metzler, Fanny, wife of David Styer, Catharine, wife of Christian Hertzler, [and] Esther and Magdalena, married to Jesse and Samuel Clark, respectively.

I mention this because I am often asked how the Styers, Clarks and Metzlers figure in the relationship of the Zimmermans, Weavers and Martins. Here it is but easily remembered.

So that all may know where I am in the history of East Earl, I will say that this farm passed from Hans to Peter, from Peter to Peter Zimmerman, then to John Shirk, after his death to Samuel O. Jacobs, William B. Jacobs, then to David Weaver and to his son John Weaver, Preacher, who moved to Indiana, then to Aaron Stauffer and his son Harry, and widow Mary, who were lineal descendants of the Christian Zimmerman line, then it went to Abraham Martin who turned it back again to its first original line of the Hans Zimmerman, as was stated.

The farm, now owned and for many years occupied by Joseph Martin, has been out of the Zimmerman line since the Administrators of Samuel Shirk sold it to Jacob High in April, 1843.

This last mentioned place, for many years used by the Mennonite Church as a place of worship, there being a large log and frame dwelling with large rooms suitable for that purpose, was torn down in the summer of 1839. And the present large stone dwelling [was] erected in its place by the owner, Samuel Shirk, who died soon afterwards leaving one daughter.

But with the passing of the old log house, the place of worship of our fathers was changed and the first meeting house called Lichtys was erected in a beautiful natural woods on the north slope of the hill opposite the present home of Martin Lichty in Caernarvon Township in 1840.

What a pity it is that the old road which originally passed by the old Zimmerman Graveyard was ever changed. As with the road on its former location this old meeting house as well as the present house would overshadow the cemetery. Perhaps the second house would never have been needed and much trouble and unpleasantness would have been avoided. The change of this road and the results or effects of the manner in which it was brought about is one of many proofs to me that the Word of God in its declaration, that “The iniquities of the fathers shall be visited upon their children even to the third and fourth generations” is as applicable today as in the days of the Children of Israel.

But to get back to the time when Peter Zimmerman, of the George Weaver line, who married to Esther Weaver of the third generation, a brother of Bishop Jacob Zimmerman, moved to Cumberland County when many other brethren of Weaverland went with them. A short time before them, or a little later, they soon built up several congregations in their new home and ministers were needed. Some of whom I have discovered were found in our line of study today. The first one to be chosen was George Rupp in 1830, four years after his marriage to Elizabeth Zimmerman, of whom we will speak later. Then in 1865 Peter Zimmerman’s son, Samuel, was ordained who died twelve years later. In 1883 Samuel Hess, a grand-son of the said Peter Zimmerman and Esther Weaver was chosen to fill the place. And in 1887 the present Bishop Benjamin Zimmerman, another grandson of these emigrants was chosen to the ministry. These Zimmerman and their kin are all in the line from Hans Zimmerman and Anna Weaver, except the said Elizabeth Rupp who was only second-cousin to the Peter who moved to Cumberland. But through the marriage of the third Christian Zimmerman of the other line to Maria Martin who was sister of Preacher David Martin’s wife, Barbara, of Cumberland County, who were daughters of Peter Martin of Canada and granddaughters of Big Christian Zimmerman, who was usually called the heavy man and often nick-named Shultz, of the Hans Zimmerman line. They again became related more closely. Then there is Deacon Peter Hess and no doubt others laboring in the church who escaped my hurried search and countless others whose like in our own community, names should be mentioned.

On June 9th, just one month after the big real estate deal from the Edwards to Hans Zimmerman, the certain Hans Zimmerman from Cocalico sold his 151 acres in Earl Township to Christian Zimmerman who in turn sold 85 and ½ acres of it to his brother Hans, and besides keeping the balance bought a small tract from Henry Weaver. A larger tract by patent from the Proprietors of Pennsylvania, established his beautiful home which remained in the family name from that time, June 9, 1752 to 1907. That is the first Christian owned it to the time of his death in 1787, a period of 34 years. The second Christian owned it from that time to 1826, the time of his death, a period of 39 years. The third Christian owned it from that time to 1869, the time of his death, a period of 43 years and the fourth Christian enjoyed its ownership to the time of his decease in 1900, which was 31 years, after which the older homestead part of the farm remained in the possession of his widow, Mary Zimmerman, and their youngest son, Christian Zimmerman, who was the fifth of the same name in direct descent owning the same plantation (which has only one equal in the line of descent in one name by the Old Homestead of Henry B. Weaver, in East Earl so far as we now remember).

The children of the first Christian Zimmerman were Christian, who married Barbara, daughter of John Weaver.

Barbara, who married Peter Shirk, who was a great-grand-father to John and Jacob Metzler, Fannie Styer, and Israel Clark (whom some might have known).

Elizabeth, who married to George Hoffman, whose lived [?] I think, reaches the John H. Good family, the Schudts, and the Highes.

Mary, was married to Joseph Shirk, who [were] grandfather and grandmother of our deceased friend, the surveyor and grain-candlemaker and also grandfather of Christian Shirk at Blue Ball and of John Shirk, my informant, who resides on the old Shirk homestead in Carvon Township where she lived from 1792 to the end of her days. She was the mother of Christian Shirk, father of Christian, who was blessed with more than ordinary intelligence and served the Weaverland, Lichty District as minister of the Gospel for more than 33 years. She was the youngest of the family.

Catharine, was married to George Weaver (brother of her brother Christian’s wife), and was the great-grand-mother of Mrs. David Gehman, now residing on the old home-stead in Caernarvon.

Magdalena, was married to Peter Light, who is no doubt the progenitor of the Lichtys of Caernarvon and their descendants.

Esther, was the wife of Emanuel Newswanger who served as one of the executors with the second Christian in the settlement of his father’s estate.

His will was made October 30, 1787, and he starts out by saying that he is very sick, but thanks God that he is good in mind and understanding. He died several months afterwards. (His will is here unto attached in full as it was written and signed.)

The children of the second Christian Zimmerman were:

JOHN — who was married to Mattie Lichty but died in early manhood and his widow married Benjamin Bauman who was the mother of Zimmerman. Bauman who died young and is buried in the old graveyard.

CHRISTIAN — who married Maria Martin, whose parents were Peter Martin and Anna Zimmerman Martin, her mother being a grand-daughter of Hans, the brother of the first Christian, bring her to be a sister of Bishop Jacob Zimmerman, before mentioned in this paper.

PETER — who married Maria Stauffer, lived for a time in Caernarvon and afterwards Ohio, was the father of Mrs. Martin E. Stauffer and of Mrs. Aaron Stauffer, both late of East Earl Township, deceased, and of Christian and Jacob Zimmerman of Ohio, Samuel of Kansas and David of Michigan, all deceased.

BARBARA — married John Sweigart, left no children. (Lived in Ohio for a while.) Is buried in the old graveyard.

CATHARINE — married to Peter Good, lived in Goodville. Left no children. But became foster mother to Catharine Shirk, daughter of her cousin David Shirk. She and her husband rest in the old cemetery.

ANNA — who was married to David Coble of Cumberland County.

ELIZABETH — who married to Preacher George Rupp of Cumberland County. And leaves many descendants.

The last named sisters were married. The one on Sunday and the other on Tuesday in the latter part of March 1826 and their father died suddenly on Wednesday or Thursday of the same week on March 28th. The daughters moving to their Cumberland County homes soon after the funeral made a great change in the home, and his son John operated the farm for some time. The same having been willed to him by his father and the other part of the farm now occupied by Sauder was willed and given to Christian. But when John died several years later, Christian bought it from his estate. He gave each farm to his sons for $4200.00, the one containing 123 acres and the home farm containing 121 acres.

In this same will he gave his son, Peter, a farm containing 153 acres in Caernarvon Township for $4600.00.

And he gave his sons, John and Christian and Peter, two tracts of land containing seven hundred acres in Upper Canada, being Lots No. 6, and III. And he gave his daughters Barbara and Elizabeth one tract containing 350 acres No. 100, and another tract containing 350 acres in Upper Canada to his two daughters Anna and Catharine. (These were no doubt lots or lands which a number of Lancaster County Mennonites bought in Waterloo County, Ontario in order to clear a tract of 60,000 acres of land.) Many acres of which was covered with a mortgage and was only discovered after many of their brethren whom they knew had invested their money and had made extensive improvements thereon. This shows to you as his descendants that he was liberal, open-hearted, and not slow to assist those who were in need and distress. His will was made January 16, 1826 and he died on the 28th day of March of the same year.

The children of the third Christian Zimmerman and Maria (Martin) Zimmerman were reared on the old homesteads of two farms were; a daughter of Joseph Kurtz.

John M. Zimmerman who was married to Maria Kurtz lived most of his time in Caernarvon Township. Was ordained as minister of the Mennonite church March 6, 1883 by Bishop Amos Shenk. Died May 3, 1903, having served his Church and God faithfully and loyally for a little more than twenty years. On November 17, 1885, his left arm was amputated and he was familiarly known as the one-armed preacher. His honesty of purpose and kindness of heart and his unswerving steadfastness in the principle handed down to him by his parents and church fathers won for him love and universal respect in and out of the church. It could be well said of him that “He lived and died in the fullness of time.” They left two sons.

Christian F. who was before mentioned as the fourth of his name to own and reside on the old homestead was married to Mary Martin a daughter of Jacob Martin. Their home was the center of hospitality for a large circle of relatives. No Zimmerman or any of their clan including many Martins and Weavers from Canada, Indiana, or from Cumberland County Pa. would have been satisfied with a visit to Lancaster County unless they were privileged to spend a night or two under their care. They left nine children, six daughters and three sons. Two of their daughters have since gone to join their parents in the spirit world.

Peter M. Zimmerman married Magdalena Martin, a daughter of John Martin (who is the only one for those connected with the large family now living and she is of such feebleness of mind that no information could be had from her). They lived on the Eastern half of the old farm for many years, but died near Weaverland leaving five daughters and no sons.

Levi M. Zimmerman was married to Tianna Martin, daughter of Miller Isaac Martin. They resided and operated Martin’s and Oberholzer’s mills in Earl Township and a peculiarity of changes wrought by time is the fact that Martin’s mill, the girlhood home of his wife which was so successfully operated by her father, husband and brother by a large water-wheel, now has no vestige of water near the old mill. Of their children Levi Zimmerman is a deacon in the Stauffer, or Pike Mennonite Church. They leave two sons and one daughter now living.

Mary Zimmerman was married to John Weaver, a son of David Weaver. Her husband was ordained to the ministry at Weaverland. They lived on one of the original tracts of Hans Zimmerman joining her father’s home until 1868 when they moved to Elkhart Indiana, where she died suddenly on January 21, 1879, just 11 years after leaving her childhood home. Leaving a large family, one of whom Christian Weaver is. Like his father a preacher of one of the branches of the Mennonite, her husband continued in the ministry until his death several years ago at church in Elkhart County. It is a coincidence that Peter Zimmerman moved from the same place as she did, 52 years earlier (as before mentioned), and took his family to Cumberland County, Pa., where a number of ministers and stalwart men and women in the church of their choice descended from his lineage.

Catherine Zimmerman married Jacob Zimmerman who was a nephew of Bishop Zimmerman and a son of Christian Zimmerman of the Hans Zimmerman lineage. Her husband was ordained to the ministry of the Mennonite Church at Landis Valley. They lived for many years west of Mechanicsburg, on the farm now more commonly known as one of the Houser farms, where she died. Leaving a family of four sons and 7 daughters the parents are resting in the family lot at Landis Valley.

Rebecca Zimmerman was married to Abraham W. Martin, son of Jacob Martin and a brother to her brother Christian’s wife. They lived and reared their family on a part of the old Pool Forge farms in one of the colonial mansions in Caernarvon Township, belonging to the old Iron Masters in the prosperous antebellum days. She died at their home leaving a family of four daughters and four sons, all living except one.

After making the lists and records I was struck with the fact that the first, second and third Christian in this line had each seven children.

To carry this lineage farther down the lines would be laborious and would fill a volume, but it could not be helpful and interesting to some future generations. If several families would be moved on three generations further so that the traces could be preserved [?].

We would yet like to take a look over the general lives of the good side of these people and see whether it was worthwhile that they lived among us and we hurriedly set the following, some of which was already mentioned.

In the year 1813, Jacob Zimmerman was ordained to the ministry and in 1815 he was chosen bishop as a helper of the old Bishop Henry Martin and they served together for 10 years when the old bishop died and Zimmerman served the church along until 1854 when George Weaver became his assistant. He died September 15, 1856.

His father was a large heavy man, said to have been very strong and weighing over 400 pounds. It is said of him that because of his weight he was too heavy for his horse and he was the first man to attend church service at Weaverland in any sort of a vehicle. This was a regular two-wheeled farm cart with a seat of chair fastened to it. The boys of that day thought it so funny and strange to see this manner of going to services. They played all sorts of jokes around it and stood in groups to see the old brother drive away. All these disturbances caused some criticism and for a time he did not attend church. But with some encouragement he again came in his wagon and by and by others followed in his style of locomotion. He died in 1817, only 101 years ago. He was the great grand-father of Preacher Menno S. Zimmerman of Martindale, who was ordained to the ministry March 18, 1884. Bishop Zimmerman was an uncle to Preacher Jacob W. Zimmerman, and also an uncle to Preacher Samuel Zimmerman of Cumberland County. While he was granduncle of Preacher Samuel Hess and Bishop Benjamin Zimmerman and Deacon Peter Hess of the same place. Samuel W. Taylor, Preacher of the Brethren Church, married to Fanny Zimmerman.

Then when we look down the other line we first discover that Jacob Newswanger, a grandson or possibly great-grandson of Esther Zimmerman, a daughter of the first Christian, was a preacher and died in 1835. And his son served the church as minister from January 1869 to 1882. That was Emanuel.

Christian Shirk, another grandson of the first Christian was ordained in 1837 and served the Weaverland-Lichty District as preacher for 33 years until his death. Then there was John M. Zimmerman, before mentioned, and George Rupp, Jacob W. Zimmerman and John Weaver, intermarried into this line all before mentioned.

With fourteen ministers of the Gospel, the Zimmermans were surely well taken care of spiritually well as financially and they may well say, “The Lord has been gracious unto us”.

But you will notice that we are not mentioning those who are living only so far that we may connect ourselves with the proper passed generation.

The wife of Deacon Henry Martin of Goodville and several sisters and one brother Henry Zimmerman were children and Christian Carpenter lately deceased and Mrs. Daniel Nolt were grandchildren of John Zimmerman of the third generation in the Hans Zimmerman line.

The Hildebrands and one branch of the Ranck family as do many others of which we did not mention also trace their lines into this family.

George Zimmerman and his brothers and sisters all of Weaverland being the Christian Zimmerman family. Samuel G. Zimmerman and his brother and sisters of the same place. The Isaac Zimmerman family of the vicinity of Lancaster and the Jacob Zimmerman family late of Cedar Lane, before mentioned. Benjamin Zimmerman of Hinkletown and all his brothers and sisters’ families and the Isaac Burkhart family of Brecknock all trace their ancestry to Hans, through Bishop Jacob Zimmerman.

The family of the late Peter Zimmerman of Spring Grove of his two brothers, Emanuel, late of Weaverland, of their brother John and David of Martindale and their sisters, Barbara Martin of Goodville, Elizabeth Earnst of Kansas, and Anna Groff of Ohio, all trace back to the same ancestor through Christian Zimmerman, the Bishop’s brother.

The families of Joseph, John and other Oberholzers and their sisters and several Wenger families trace their line to the same ancestor, through Barbara Zimmerman Oberholzer.

Of the families of Anna Martin and Elizabeth Wenger who moved to Canada, I have no account here.

And the Preacher Jacob W. Zimmerman family traces their ancestry back through the second Christian on the Hans side and through the third Christian on the Christian side.

Nearly all the Shirks of Caernarvon and East Earl and other places who are descendants of Peter and Joseph Shirk mentioned in the first Christian’s will trace to that Branch.

It would be ungrateful to close this paper without telling you that after spending much time in looking over old notes and history of my gathering we are greatly indebted to George Zimmerman of Weaverland whom I interviewed three times and who spent a half day in the old graveyard with me and to Preacher Menno S. Zimmerman of Martindale, Catharine Shirk, Suana Weiler of Goodville and John Shirk of Caernarvon, all received me with great kindness and not only showed a willingness to give the information as they remembered it but expressed their pleasure that his move might be preserved for future generations. When I started two weeks ago, no one knew of any connections of the two 16 year old boys which has worked out so nicely by fitting all links together.

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Last update: 2016-01-06