Name: Johann Wilhelm (John William) WEBER (Weaver) To Amer. 1764
Given Name: Johann Wilhelm (John William)
Suffix: (Weaver) To Amer. 1764
Birth: 5 Mar 1735 in Feudingen,Wittgenstein,Westfalen,Germany
Christening: 25 Mar 1735 Evangelical Church,Feudingen (Kr. Wittgenstien)
Death: Jul 1816 in Hempfield Twp.,Westmoreland Co.,PA
Burial: Milliron Cem.,Hempfield Twp.
NOTES & SOURCES:
Change Date: 7 Aug 2004 at 01:00:00
1. Biography of JACOB G. WEAVER, pp. 370-374, in Vol. 2 of "History of
Westmoreland Co., PA" by Jordan, 1906. Has information on Rev. John William
Weber (birth, ministery, two marriages, names & dates of children, etc.). Jacob G.
Weaver was a great grandson, through the line of John William Weaver/Weber Jr.
(1774 - 1828), who was born in Sussex Co., NJ and died in Cook Twp., Westmoreland
Co., PA. [See notes under John Wm. Weaver, Jr.]
2. Biography of Rev. John William Weber, p. 54-61 in Chap. IX, "The History of the
Pittsburgh Synod of the Reformed Church in the United States..." by Rev. David B.
Lady, D.D., 1920. Some portions of this bio. ---
"The first settled Reformed minister in Western Pennsylvania was Rev. John
William Weber. Mr. Weber was born in the province of Wittgenstein, Germany,
March 5th, 1735. He was a school-teacher in his native land. He came to America
in 1764. He was married, October 5th, 1767, in Falkner Swamp, Montgomery
County, Pa., to Maria Agnes Born, a native of Baden-Baden, Germany. She died
July 25, 1874. Afterwards Mr. Weber married Anna Maria Robinson. He had
Coming to this country, he also engaged in school teaching for some years. There
was a great dearth of ministers at that time; and in many places the school teacher
gathered the people together on the Lord's day and read the bible, led in singing
and prayer and read them a sermon ...In some places he even baptised the children.
In a number of cases these pious school teachers...entered the ministry regularly,
being licensed, first as catechist, then to preach, and finally licensed and ordained
as regular ministers of the gospel."
Continues with details of the process of Weber's training from 1771, "to allow him to
preach and catechize in congregations where it is necessary"...and in 1772, "The
brethren Wack, WEBER, Neveling, Wagner and Steiner, who were examined last year
by the Coetus held in Reading, appeared and...petitioned Coetus for ordination...
on account of the earnest petition of their congregations and their representation of
their great need, that, although they had a minister in their midst, yet at baptism
and other ministerial acts they were obligated to look elsewhere for an ordained
minister...Resolved: the brethren named above...shall once more be examined...If
the result shall be satisfactory to the examiners, the ordination shall take place."
"In the Coetal letter sent to Holland in 1774, this passage occurs: You will no
doubt remember that the candidates Neveling, Wack, Wagner, Steiner and WEBER
after having passed the examination, were received into the holy ministry."
"...Soon after his ordination, obtained with difficulty and delay, Rev. Weber
located among some destitute congregations near the Wind Gap in Northampton
County. In the minutes of 1776 he is reported as pastor in Plainfield, Greenwich,
Hanolden, Hamilton and Mount Bethel...1782 he is reported as pastor of Plainfield
and Hamilton...Mr. Shoepf, a German traveler in America, relates that in August
1782, he went from Philadelphia to the Wyoming Valley and that he remained
over night two miles north of Wind Gap, and passed several farms occupied by
Germans and a small log church which had been built by Lutherans and German
Reformed; and that a Rev. Weber had last served this congregation; but that he
lost the affection of the people, because he preached too much about the war,
that they withdrew their support from him and he was under the necessity to
leave, and that he had gone to Pittsburgh.
The Coetus met in Reading in May, 1782...in the minutes of that year...
"A congregation in Westmoreland County, near Pittsburgh, a new settlement
where there was no German minister heretofore, very earnestly petitoned for
an able minister...Since Mr. Weber showed an inclination for this congregation,
the Reverend Coetus resolved to recommend him..."
"In a letter to the present writer [Rev. David Lady], dated Nov. 24, 1876,
Dr. Hacke wrote of the St. Paul's Congregation, near Pleasant Unity, in
Westmoreland County: 'The first church in which the congregation worshipped
was built upon the farm formerly owned by CASPER WEAVER, a relative of
Rev. Weber; the largest number of Reformed members, principally from Northampton
County, where Rev. Weber preached in the first years of his ministry, resided in
this neighborhood; the so-called Sewickley settlement was at an early day very
German; Rev. Weber soon after his arrival in these parts, is known to have held
catechisation in the vicinity of the first and second churches; and lastly, a Mr.
Fiskeys, from this neighborhood, was sent with a team to Northampton County,
to move Rev. Weber to Westmoreland County."
From p. 58 -- "In a document drawn up by Rev. Weber near the close of his
life, dated March 28th, 1814, he gives an account of his removal to Westmoreland
County... 'In the year 1782 I was sent by Coetus to Westmoreland County, Pa. to
visit the congregations there; and privilege was given me to become their pastor if
they should call me. I arrived on the ground in September of that year, preached in
all the congregations in Westmoreland County, Pa., on to Pittsburgh, and afterwards
in Washington and Fayette Counties, returning again to Westmoreland County on
the 14th of October. Four men, as Elders and Deacons, came to see me in the house
of Mr. THOMAS, and requested me to accept a call to come and labor among them.
I believed sincerely that it was my duty to accept their call, and remove to them,
with my family. The question then arose: how much salary was necessary to
support me? I told them they knew best what would be required in the circumstances.
Whereupon they consulted together, returned to me, and offered me 116 pounds
in money, 100 bushels of wheat, a free house, and firewood, annually. In the
beginning of June, 1783, I removed with my family to Westmoreland County.'
Rev. Weber first moved into an old house rented for him by a Mr. GERHART
THOMAS, which was so open and exposed as to cause the family considerable
hardship during the following winter. Then he bought a farm, for which he went
considerably in debt...his salary was not paid according to promise, and that
18 years passed before he was out of debt..."
"When Mr. Weber first traversed this country there was still much danger
in traveling, from wild beasts and Indians; and, in riding on horseback, or traveling
afoot to his appointments, he usually went armed with a musket or horse pistol.
It was not until Wayne's victory in 1794, that all danger from the Indians ceased"
"This servant of God was able to coninue his labors to the end of his life.
He preasched his last sermon in St. Paul's Church near Pleasant Unity just two
weeks before his death. On his return to his home he visited his son-in-law,
Mr. A. TURNEY, in Greensburg and said to the family, he thought that would
be his last visit, as he believed the time of his departure was at hand. He went
home, was confined to his bed, and in two weeks died.
He was buried in the graveyard at Muehleisons [Millirons] Church about five
miles from Greensburg, on land which he had been instrumental in securing for
the church. The graveyard lies on the side of a considerable hill, along which a
road passes...His resting place was left unmarked for nearly 60 years; but a
suitable monument was erected to his memory...in 1874 by a committee of
Westmoreland Classis... His age was eighty-one years, four months and some
" In personal appearance, Mr. Weber, was a good looking, portly, well formed man.
The writer [Lady] had a daughter of his, Miss HANNAH WEAVER, as a church
member, in his first charge, who must have been like her father. She was tall, and
well proportioned and probably fair to look upon in her youth. When he knew
her she was a woman of some sixty years of age. Mr. Weber had a strong and
vigorous constitution, and was able to undergo a great deal of labor and fatigue.
He was of an ardent temperament, free spoken, rapid, but clear and distinct in
his enunciation, while preaching, and in the habit of what is generally termed
calling things by their right names. He was sensitive to injuries, and remembered
them perhaps too severely, which caused him some unhappiness. He had some
enemies, as well as many warm and greatly attached friends, as is generally the
case with men of strong character and aggressive spirit..." [This description of
Rev. Weber was taken by Lady from the book by Harbaugh -- see note 6 below.]
3. Biography of Jacob Fordney Kreps, of South Huntingdon Twp., pp. 664-666
of "History of the County of Westmoreland , PA" by George Dallas Albert, 1882.
On p. 665-666, "Jan 20, 1831, he married Eliza, daughter of ADAM and HANNAH
TURNEY. Mr. Turney came to Westmoreland Co. with his father in 1785. He married, 1811,
HANNAH, daughter of Rev. J. WILLIAM WEBER, one of three brothers who emigrated
from Holland prior to the Revolution. They settled for a time in New Jersey, where
two of the brothers, JOHN and HENRY , joined the Continental army. HENRY was
killed during the war. The Rev. WEBER (now WEAVER) came to Westmoreland
County at quite an early day...He finally settled upon his farm on Big Sewickly Creek,
where Col. Painter's mill and salt-works are now located, and where he died in 1817."
[The fact that Rev. Weber had two brothers in the Revolutionary war in NJ probably
explains his "preaching too much about the war", which resulted in the loss of his
former churches in Northampton Co., and his moving to Westmoreland Co.]
4. John William Weber probably arrived in America on the ship "Sarah",
20 Sept 1764. The passenger list shows Johan Wilhelm Weber, Joh. Peter Weber
and Theobold Weber. [Johan Peter Weber could be the brother who served in
the Sussex Co. NJ Continental Army during the Revolution. See notes under
John Weaver x Eve Thomas.]
5. "German Church Records of Westmoreland Co., PA" by Paul Miller Ruff,
Vols. 1-4. Has baptisms by Johan Wilhelm Weber/Weaver, recorded in Weber's
own baptismal record book, and also in the records of individual churches served
by Rev. Weber. The baptism of two of his own children are in Vol. 1 -- Nicolas,
b. 1784 to his first wife, Mary Agnes, who died in childbirth, and Maria Magdalena,
the first child born to his second wife, Anna Maria, in 1785. There is a gap in records
for his next 5 children, then the last 5 are in his baptismal records (Vol. 2 of Ruff.)
In the preface to the Baptisms by Johan Wilhelm Weber, p. 80 of Vol. 1 of "The
German Church Records..." by Pastor Paul Miller Ruff, Ruff mentions that Weber
left a record of more than 3800 baptisms over 33 years, and after his death the Weber
record book went to the Reformed Church in Greensburg. He also points out that
the first 24 baptisms are from Oct 5-17, 1779, when Weber was still minister back in
Northampton Co., but are for families that lived in Westmoreland Co. Did Weber
make an earlier visit to Westmoreland Co. in 1779? [#1 in his baptismal book is
for Gerhart Thomas, son of Gerhart Thomas & Magdalena, who are known to have
been in Westmoreland Co. at that time. Gerhart (Garret) Thomas is the person who
provided the rented house for Weber in 1783. See also notes under Gerhart/Garret
Thomas.] Four baptisms in Sept. & Oct of 1782 may have occurred during his visit
to the Westmoreland Reformed congregations that fall, before his move in June of 1783.
6. From Albert's "History of the Co. of Westmoreland, PA", p. 242 --
" In June, 1783, when he entered on his work he had four congregations to serve --
Harrold's or St. John's, and the Brush Creek, both in Hempfield township; Kintig's in
Mount Pleasant Township; and the Ridge Church, about one mile south of Pleasant
Unity, in Unity twp. He also preached at Pittsburgh. Besides these regular places of
service, he held services and gave instructions in Ligonier Valley, and to the scattered
Germans of both his own church and the Lutheran Church all over the southern part of the
county..." Pp. 243-244 also have a biographical sketch of Weber, which mentions much
of the same information as in the book by Rev. Lady in note 2 above. Both seem to
have used an earlier book, "The Fathers of the German Reformed Church in Europe
and America" by Henry Harbaugh, 1857. Albert says "A pretty full account
of his life and services is contained in the second volume of Harbaugh's 'Fathers of
the Reformed Church' from pages 208 to 221. [ I have since read this section on Rev.
Weber in a microfilm of this Vol. 2 by Harbaugh, available on FHL #940415. The
bio. in Lady, 1920, quoted in my note 2 above, does contain material which is also
in Harbaugh. Harbaugh, however, makes no mention of the names of the 18 children,
or anything about Rev. Weber settling in Sussex Co., NJ. Harbaugh briefly gives his birth
in Wittgenstein, the date, names the two wives, etc., as in the first paragraph of the
quotes from Lady at the beginning of my note 2. Harbaugh says the second wife was
7. Weber's baptisms in Vol. 2 & 3 of Ruff show an Abraham Weber & Barbara as
parents of two children in 1802 & 1804, and a Jacob Weber & Anna Mary as parents
of 5 children 1805 to 1811. In the last, Johann Wilhelm, bapt. 3 March 1812, the
sponsor was Joh. Wilhelm Weber, grandfather. Both Barbara & Anna Mary were
daughters of Valentin Weiskopf and Maria Sophia. They are given as grandparents
in the baptism of Margaretha Weber (dau. of Jacob & Anna Mary), and also as
grandparents in the baptism of Wilhelm Weber (son of Abraham Weber & Barbara).
8. Death notice -- Hannah Maria Weaver, widow of Rev. Wm., late of this Co.,
d. Sun. at house of her son-in-law Adam Turney in this borough, age about 71 yrs.
(07-12-1865 Greensburg Gazette) [Note -- the age at death of 71 yrs. could not be
correct. The actual age of this second wife is unknown, but would have to be much
more than 71, if she was married in 1784. More data needed!]
9. Deed Bk. A-2:394. 1 Feb. 1784. Deed. Jacob Shreder [or Shroeder] of Hempfield
Twp., Westmoreland Co., miller, to William Weaver of the same place, Minister of the
Gospel. For 500 pounds, an improvement plantation and a 300 acre tract in
Hempfield Twp., with Mill & Millhouses, outhouses, watercourses... adjacent lands
of Sewickly, John Welsh, widow Mollen & Samuel Smith. Witnesses -
Christopher Truby & Henry Smith. Recorded 17 Aug. 1874.
10. Deed Bk. 21:475 - 2 May 1835 - WilliamWeaver's Executors to John Weaver
of Hempfield Twp. Daniel Kintigh, surving Exec. of the Will of Rev. William
Weaver late of Hemp. Twp., dec'd. to John Weaver. Deed for 130 acres, 110
perches in Hempfield Twp., adj. Hugh Wilson, Abner Hissom, David Weyand,
Lobingier & Markle. Article of Agreement on 30 Jan 1796 between Rev. Weaver
in his lifetime to said John Weaver & one Wm. Weaver, Jr.... he agreed to sell to
said John & Wm. a certain tract in Hempfield Twp., adj. John Welsh...for price of
2 pounds 5 shillings per acre for each, & whereas the interest of the said William
Weaver, Jr. has since...been vested in said John Weaver, & Rev. Wm. Weaver departed
this life before the purchase money due on said contract was fully paid...his Will
did direct his Exec. to execute to said John Weaver a deed...upon his paying the
balance of purchase money remaining. John Weaver has since paid the balance of
$194.58. Recorded 4 May 1835.
11. "Church Family Roots, A History of the Families of the First Reformed United
Church of Christ, Greensburg, PA", Linda A. Soles, Editor. 1996. Story of
Rev. John William Weber, 1735-1816, pages 20-22. Has photos of the Weber
Memorial Chapel & Weber Monument at Milliron Cemetery. Says "Today, Weber's
farm with the Milliron Chapel and cemetery is owned by the United Church of
Christ and is used as a retreat facility by area churches. A six foot tall Rose Marble
Obelisk was erected in the cemetery on Weber's final resting place in June, 1874,
by the Pittsburgh Synod and his descendants at a cost of $450." Also says that
the Weber farm is "three miles west of Youngwood on Sewickly Creek (now Hepler's
Mill at New Stanton.)"
12. Biography of a descendant, James Bentley Weaver, p. 273-275 of Vol. 3, "Old &
New Westmoreland" by Boucher & Hedley, 1918. Has a section on the life & service
of Rev. John William Weber -- "The Rev. Mr. Weaver was born in Fehvingen, in the
Province of Wittgenstein, Germany, March 5, 1735...In 1762 he left his native land
and migrated to the United States, settling in New Jersey...eventually he purchased
a farm on Sewickly creek. It was afterwards owned by Colonel Israel Painter. His
death occurred on this place in July, 1816."
Father: Johan Jost WEBER b: in Feudingen,Wittgenstein,Westfalen,Germany
Mother: Anna Catherina RIND (Kind) b: in Feudingen,Wittgenstein,Westfalen,Germany
Maria Agnes BORN b: 18 Jan 1743 in Obercortens,Baden-Baden,Germany
5 Oct 1767
in Trappe Ch.,Falkner Swamp,Montgomery Co.,PA
- John WEAVER (Weber) b: 17 Jul 1768 in PA
- Marie Catherine WEBER b: 21 Jun 1770 in PA
- Elenora Phelopena WEBER (Weaver) b: 20 Jan 1772 in Bucks Co.,PA
- John William WEAVER (Weber) Jr. b: 31 Jul 1774 in Morrisville,Sussex Co.,New Jersey
- Elizabeth WEBER b: 29 Nov 1776 in Plainfield,Northampton Co.,PA
- Abraham WEAVER (Weber) b: 23 Jan 1779 in Northampton Co.,PA
- Jacob WEAVER b: 22 Mar 1781 in Northampton Co.,PA
- John Nicholas WEAVER (Weber) b: 25 Jul 1784 in Westmoreland Co.,PA c: 1 Aug 1784 in #252 of Weber
Anna (Hannah) Maria SARVER (widow Robinson)
11 Nov 1784
in by Rev. Finlay,Westmoreland Co.,PA
- Maria Magdalena WEBER b: 11 Oct 1785 in Mt. Pleasant Twp.,Westmoreland Co.,PA c: 23 Oct 1785 in #432 of Weber
- (son) WEBER b: 12 Aug 1787 in Mt. Pleasant Twp.,Westmoreland Co.,PA
- Daniel WEAVER (Weber) b: 15 Jul 1789 in Mt. Pleasant Twp.,Westmoreland Co.,PA
- Maria Magdalena WEBER b: 28 Nov 1790 in Westmoreland Co.,PA
- Hannah WEBER (Weaver) b: 9 Apr 1791 in Westmoreland Co.,PA
- Anna Margaretta WEBER (Weaver) b: 20 Jun 1793 in Westmoreland Co.,PA
- Catherine WEBER b: 12 Apr 1795 in Hempfield Twp.,Westmoreland Co.,PA c: 24 May 1795 in #1356 of Weber
- Adam WEAVER (Weber) b: 20 May 1797 in Hempfield Twp.,Westmoreland Co.,PA c: 9 Jul 1797 in #1564 of Weber
- Susanna WEBER b: 16 Sep 1799 in Hempfield Twp.,Westmoreland Co.,PA c: 3 Nov 1799 in #1834 of Weber
- Christina WEBER b: 14 May 1802 in Hempfield Twp.,Westmoreland Co.,PA c: 4 Jul 1802 in #2161 of Weber
- Daniel Louis WEAVER (Weber) b: 26 Aug 1804 in Hempfield Twp.,Westmoreland Co.,PA c: 7 Oct 1804 in #2429 of Weber