Johannes Buecher
Elisabeth Catharina Hommel
Johann Henrich Buecher
(Bef 1752-Aft 1820)
John Beecher


Family Links

1. Elizabeth Keplinger

John Beecher 1 2 3 4 5 6 7

  • Born: 1757, Cocalico Twp., Lancaster, PA 5 7 8 9
  • Marriage (1): Elizabeth Keplinger
  • Died: 8 Jun 1842, Menallen Twp., Adams, PA at age 85 5 7 8 9
  • Buried: Arendtsville: Old Reformed & Lutheran Graveyard, Adams, PA 6 7 10

   Other names for John were John Beeher,11 Johann Biecher,8 Johannes Bieger,12 Johannes Bucher, John Bucher,13 John Bücher 14 and John Buecher.11

   FamilySearch ID: 9VH8-59W.

  Noted events in his life were:

1. Baptism on 31 Dec 1775 in Littlestown: Christ Reformed Church, Adams, PA. Baptism by Rev. Charles Ludwig Boehme: Jacob Bücher b. 30 Oct 1775, parents John and Elizabeth, sponsor Jacob Sell and Christine 15 Jacob, son of John Bucher and Elizabeth, born 30 Oct 1775, baptized 31 Dec 1775, sponsors Jacob Sell and wife Christine. (Typewritten transcription of original.

2. The list of communicants listed by Rev. Charles Lewis Boehme included Anna Maria Bucher, John Bucher, and Elizabeth Bucher. on 21 Apr 1776 in Littlestown: Christ Reformed Church, Adams, PA. 16

3. Fact: On July 4, 1776, the Second Continental Congress unanimously adopted the Declaration of Independence, announcing the separation of the Thirteen Colonies from Great Britain., 4 Jul 1776, Philadelphia, Philadelphia, PA.

4. Military on 23 Oct 1776 in , Washington, MD: Revolutionary War: John Beecher served in Capt. William Keyser's Company of the German Battalion organized in Washington County, MD. 17 18 From "History of Western Maryland"

There was also a company from Washington County commanded by Capt. William Heyser, consisting of eighty-seven persons, who participated in several of the most important engagements of the Revolution. The personnel of this organization was as follows:

<list of personnel includes private John Beecher>

The original roster of the company, enlistment papers, pay-rools, and other souvenirs of its existence are now in the possession of Capt. Heyser's grandchildren. Many of his descendants still live in Washington County, where the family names of Heyser, Miller, Oster, Lewis, Stonebraker, Boward, Myers, Smith, Wise, Wagner, Frey, Robertson, Friend and a very few others are familiar at the present day.

From "The German Battalion of the American Revolution" by Charles Francis Stein

Roll of Capt. William Keyser's Company. Dated October 23rd, 1776.
William Keyser, Captain.
Jacob Kottz, 1st Lieut.

David McCorgan, (recomd. by Maj. & Cap.)
Jacob Hose
Daniel Taquet, (or Jaques)
Jacob Miller
Adam Smith, 2nd Lieut.
Paul Christman Ensign.

Andrew Filler
Phillip Reevenach
Barnard Frey
William Lewis

Peter Sheese, Deserted
Henry Stroam "
Adam Stonebreaker
John Fogle
Jacob Klein
George Miller
Phillip Fisher
Jonathan Hecket
Henry Tomm
Jacob Hoover
Michael Gambler
George Harmony
Thomas Clifton
Micgael Boward
Henry Wagner
John Crafft
John Shoemaker, Deserted
Mathias Gieser
Mothias Dunkle
Frederick Filler
Christian Sides, Deserted
John Kibler
Stuffle Wagner
Jacob Heefner
Conrod Hoyle
Balsor Fisher
John Smith
Michael Weaver
Jacob Belsoover
John Rothe
Wentle Strayly
John Flick
John Mettz, Deserted
Henry Michael
George Riggleman, Deserted
Nicholas Baird
John Hottfield, Deserted
Jacob Greathouse
George Buch
Stuffle Reever
George Wise
John Michael
John Robertson
Adam Lieser, Deserted
Robt. Hartness
Henry Benter
John Armstrong
Simon Fogler
Jacob Grass
Phillip Smithly, Deserted
George Wilhelm
James Duncan
John Beecher
Fredk. Switzer
Jacob Fowee, Deserted
Thomas Burney
John Itnier
Phillip Greechbaum
Jacob Bishop
Alex. Sailor
Martin Pifer, Deserted
Peter Gittin
Frances Myers
Melcher Benter
Tobias Friend, Deserted
Jacob Heefner
John Smithley
Everhard Smith
Godfrey Young
Frederick Locher
Michael Yeakly
James Furnier
Henry Queer
Henry Statler, Deserted
John Cropp

It may be noted that many of the men of Captain Keyser's Company came from Washington County. Some of the men in the two Baltimore County Companies actually came from the Frederick area or from the part of Baltimore County adjacent to Frederick which later became Carroll County.

The swift completion of the organization and equipment of the German Battalion in the Summer months of 1776 is a credit as much to the recruiting skill of the commissioned officers as to the spirit of the German speaking settlers. Particularly in Baltimore and in the western counties of Maryland, the sons of German and Swiss immigrants responded well to the call to arms. The local communities provided everything from uniforms to arms. Ironmen and gunsmiths in the German settlements could scarcely keep up with the requirements of their battalion. The so-called Lancaster County rifle (later to be known as Kentucky rifle) was provided by German gunsmiths in many communities. By rifling the inner barrel of the weapon, this rifle was a much more accurate and deadly weapon than the conventional smooth-bore musket. The latter weapon, however, could be fired more rapidly than the rifle. The British soon came to dread the deadly accuracy of the rifles of the German Battalion, but for the most part it was the bayonet charge, rather than gunfire, which decided the outcome of the battles of the American Revolution.

The original enlistment for the German Battalion was for three years and some of the first men were so enlisted. For the farm population of Western Maryland such a long absence over three harvest seasons seemed an undue hardship and eventually shorter enlistments were accepted. On July 17, 1776 an additional company could be raised.

The German Battalion, commanded by Colonel Haussegger, then marched from Philadelphia to New York, where it took part in the Battle of Long Island, August 26 to 28, 1776, the Battle of Harlem Heights on September 16, 1776 and in ensuing skirmishes, particularly at White Plains, until the retreat following the British capture of Fort Washington in November. In each of these engagements the fire of the riflemen succeeded in holding back the attacks of the enemy for several hours. The British and their German mercenary forces had great respect for the marksmanship of the American Germans, but due to the excessive time required to reload the rifles, it was the bayonet which decided the ultimate outcome of the battles. In this connection the comments of the Hessian Colonel von Heerigen to his superior, General von Lossberg are pertinent: "These people are more to be pitied than feared. After the first rounds of fire, it takes a full quarter of an hour to reload a rifle, and they soon fell victims to our bayonets."

After the fall of Fort Washington the remainder of the Continentals withdrew across the Delaware River into Pennsylvania. In this situation when the American cause was at its lowest, General Washington realized the necessity of reviving the hopes of his countrymen by some bold action. With this objective in mind, he crossed the Delaware River on Christmas night 1776 and attcked the British and Hessian forces at Trenton. The enemy was enjoying Christmas festivities and was completely surprised. In the confusion of the night fighting which ensued, the Continentals inflicted heavy losses on their opponents, and captured large amounts of ammunition and other supplies which they badly needed. The German Battalion was in the forefront of the fighting, and suffered losses accordingly. Among the victims was their regimental commander, Colonel Nicholas Haussegger, who was taken prisoner by the Hessians.

On January 3-4. 1777, General Washington repeated the same tactics, recrossing the Delaware and falling upon the British camp at Princeton, again capturing supplies of food and munitions needed by his men. In this engagement the German Battalion fought under the command of Lieutenant Colonel Stricker of Maryland.

During the late winter and spring, the Continental army was reorganized. The militia regiments had proven unreliable. The Maryland forces, seriously reduced by losses in battle, were consolidated into two regiments and five more Maryland regiments were raised. These, with the German Battalion, were organized into the celebrated "Maryland Line." They were divided into two brigades. Four regiments were placed under General William Smallwood of Maryland, and the German Regiments and three Maryland regiments were put under command of General de Borre, a Frenchman. These two brigades constituted the force commanded by Major General John Sullivan.

There were important changes among the officers of the German Battalion. After the inglorious exit of its original commander, Colonel Nicholas Haussegger, a Prussian officer, Baron d'Arendt, was imposed on the battalion as field commander with the rank of colonel. This prompted the angry resignation of Marylander George Stricker. Since the baronial colonel was largely absent during the subsequent months, the command of the German Battalion was virtually and ably performed by Major Ludwig Weltner of Maryland. Weltner was appointed Lieutenant Colonel, as was Major William Klein who belonged to the original Pennsylvania contingent. Captains Daniel Burckhardt and George Hubley were promoted to majors.

Captains Henry Fister, George Keeport and Benjamin Weiser were replaced. Among the lieutenants of the German Regiment who were commissioned as captains in the reorganization of the spring of 1777 were John Baltzell, Samuel Gerock, John Lindenberger, George Lorah, Frederick William Rice and John David Woelper. Lieutenant Paul Bentalou, a French cavalry officer, became First Lieutenant.

In August 1777 the reorganized German Battalion had its first action in the night raid on Staten Island. After initial success, the American forces were driven into retreat. Despite heavy fighting, the German Battalion escaped with only minor losses. After the British landed at Elk River, the scene of the war was shifted to the area between Wilmington and Philadelphia. The German Battalion was guarding the crossing of Brandywine Creek at Chadd's Ford at the beginning of the Battle of Brandywine on September 11, 1777. The seasoned riflemen forced a strong contingent of Hessians under General von Knyphausen to abandon the initial attack. But then tactical mistakes and rivalry on the part of some American commanders and a superb strategy of the British and Hessian forces led to a disastrous defeat.

The German Battalion suffered most severely. The extent and severity of these losses is indicated by the fact, as stated in Heitman's Historical Register of the Officers of the Continental Army, that the manpower of the German Battalion had been reduced from the original nine companies to two companies which spent the winter of 1777-1778 at Valley Forge, plus a detachment of Maryland Germans who were in winter quarters with General Smallwood.

During the winter of 1777-1778 General von Steuben transformed the American army into an efficient fighting unit. He compiled a manual of arms and instructed the men in the proper use of the bayonet. He held classes in strategy and tactics for the senior officers.

The German Battalion was reorganized. The best officers were promoted and new men were recruited in Maryland and Pennsylvania to fill the ranks. Colonel Ludwig Weltner became the commanding officer. Among the officers who were retired or who resigned in the spring of 1778 were Captain Philip Graybill, Captain William Keyser, Captain John Lorah, Captain John Baltzel, Lieutenant Jacob Kotz, Lieutenant John Lindenberger, all of Maryland, and Captain John David Woelper and Lieutenant George Haubecker of Pennsylvania. Lieutenant John Weidman of Pennsylvania had been taken prisoner at the Battle of Brandywine. He was not exchanged until December, 1780. Lieutenants Paul Bentalou and George Schaffner transferred to Pulaski's Legion.

Officers of the German Battalion who were promoted in the spring of 1778 were as follows: Lieutenant Bernard Hubley of Pennsylvania and Lieutenant Christian Meyers of Maryland became Captains, as did Lieutenant Jacob Schräder of Pennsylvania. The Second Lieutenants, Jacob Cramer and Christopher Gottfried Schwarz, both of Pennsylvania, and Martin Shugart of Maryland became First Lieutenants. David Diffenderfer and Christian Gleckner, both of Pennsylvania, received Ensign's commissions.

On February 26, 1778 the German Battalion was officially made a part of Maryland's quota to improve and facilitate recruitment as well as supplies. It was numbered as the Eighth Maryland but in most records its original designation as the German Battalion was retained.

The German Battalion, as part of General Sullivan's division, served in the operations at Rhode Island in the late summer and fall of 1778. For the most part these actions consisted of surprise attacks on British outposts. The only definite documentation of the Battalion is dated September 5, 1778. It is a record of a payroll for a part of the Battalion, then stationed at White Plains, New York.

In 1779 Sullivan was assigned the duty of protecting the western frontier against the Indians. As an important unit of his Brigade the German Battalion was active in the punitive expedition against the Iroquois Indians and Butler's Rangers. The Indian warfare was brought to a successful conclusion in September 1779. The First Maryland Brigade, now commanded by General de Kalb, was sent south, where it remained for the remainder of the war. The German Battalion, under the immediate command of Colonel Ludwig Weltner of Maryland, continued its assignment of guarding the frontier, under the overall command of General Sullivan.

In 1780 the German Battalion was sent to Pennsylvania Where it served throughout the year in Northumberland County, guarding the frontiers against the Indians. There were no large scale engagements during this final period of the activity of the Battalion.

On January 1, 1781, on General Washington's order for the "Reform of the Army," the Maryland forces were consolidated into five regiments serving in the Southern campaign. By this order the German Battalion was officially disbanded, and the officers and men were retired, thus ending the existence of this Battalion which had served its country in good and bad days with honor and distinction for nearly five years. A respectable number of the veterans of the battalion was retained for service in the Frederick Detachment of the Maryland Line, a unit set up to guard the prisoners quartered in Frederick in 1781 and 1782.

General Washington held the German Battalion in the highest esteem, which is evidenced by his report to the Board of War dated February 19, 1781 which concluded: "The Board of War will be pleased to pay attention to a memorial of Lieutenant Colonel Weltner of the German Battalion. He is a deserving officer and has always conducted himself and the officers of his regiment, the charge of which was in fact always upon him, with singular propriety. His health is much impaired by the Service, and if Baron d'Arendt was considered as having quitted the command of the Regiment when he returned to Europe, I think Colonel Weltner is justly entitled to the emoluments of a Lieutenant Colonel Commandant from that time."

5. Tax List: 1780, Germany Twp., York, PA. 19

6. Fact: The British surrender at Yorktown marked the end of major military operations in the Revolutionary War. Most Continental soldiers went home about 1783., 19 Oct 1781, Yorktown, York, VA.

7. Tax List: Beacher, John, 48 acres, 2 horses, 2 cows, valuation 239 pounds, tax 1 pound 4 shillings 11 pence, 1786, Heidelberg Twp., York, PA. 20

8. Tax List: John Bucher, 240 acres, 3 horses, 3 cows, tax 2 pounds, 1787, Germany Twp., York, PA. 21

9. Recorded in York County Deed Book 2-E page 147 on 17 May 1787 in Germany Twp., York, PA. 13 22 On 17 May 1787 Henry Beeher and Catharine his wife of Germany Township County of York sold to John Beeher of Heidelberg Township County of York for 900 pounds 250 acres in Germany Township adjoining properties of: Ludwich Miller, Thomas Carpenter, John Redick, Michael Kuntz, It being part of Patent dated 19 Jun 1764 to Nicholas Shrier in Patent Book A. A. Vol 5 page 644 which Nicholas Shrier and Catharine his wife sold on 11 May 1778 to John Groff who with his wife Elizabeth on 6 May 1779 sold to Henry Beeher by the indenture recorded in County of York in Book B. B. page 243 [Book 2-B]. And on 1 Sep 1783 Henry Beeher and Catharine his wife sold to George Klimmer 27 acres adjoining Thomas Carpenter (otherwise Adam Winterot) as recorded in Book B. B. page 292. Yet nevertheless said Henry Beher holds in reserve the house on the premises wherein Christian Reck Jr. now dwells and twelve acres of land adjoining and also the fruit of six apple trees to be chosen by Henry Beher to be holden by Henry Beeher and Catharine his wife for and during their natural lives.

10. Tax List: 1789, Germany Twp., York, PA. 23 Beecher, Henry, 75 acres, 1 horse, 1 cow, 1 house, 2 lots.valuation 64,0,0, tax 0 9 0
Beecher Frederick, no land, 1 cow, valuation 4, 0, 0, tax 0 2 0
Beecher, John 200 acres, 2 horses, 3 cows, 1 house, 1 lot, valuation 376, 10, 0, tax 2 5 0.

11. Census in 1790 in Germany Twp., York, PA. 24 The 1790 U.S. Census in Germany Township, at the time in York County, recorded John Beher with this household:
Males Under 16 (born 1775-1790) = 1 (son John)
Males 16 and older (born <=1774) = 1 (father John)
Females = 3 (wife Elizabeth, daughters Elizabeth & Anna Mary)
Henry Sr. and his sons John and Samuel are each indexed in the 1790 census as follows on images on image 252 Henry Becher; on image 248 his son John Beher; on image 249 his son Samuel Beeher. Sons William and Peter are not found so they were living with Henry Sr. These 1790 census record pages don't identify the township, but we know it is Germany Township because on the same pages are the Klein/Kline/Little family that founded Littlestown as well as families related to the Beechers: Winterode/Winrode, Sell, etc.

12. Tax List: John Beeker, 200 acres, 2 horses, 2 cows, tax 1 pound 4 shillings 9 pence, 1792, Germany Twp., York, PA. 21

13. Newspaper: Pennsylvania Herald & York General Advertiser, 27 May 1795, York, York, PA. 25 Sheriff's Sales: Estate of John Poffenberger, one equal undivided half part of improvement & tract in Mountpleasant Twp., York co. of 180 a., adjacent lands of Martin Botosff, Nicholas Lengle, & John Beegher.

14. Court: on 5 Dec 1797 in , York, PA. 13 His father Henry's inventory is filed and sons John and William were listed as executors.

15. Tax List: 1798, Straban Twp., Adams, PA. 26 John Becher, 1 barn part log part stone, 60 x 20, 1 stone still house 22 x 20, adjoining land of David Scott & others. 158 acres. Valuation of tract $948.

16. Tax List: 1799, Straban Twp., Adams, PA. 27 The tax list prepared in 1799 for the year 1800 shows only one possible name for John: John Beeher, distiller, $1,019.

17. Census in 1800 in Straban Twp., Adams, PA. 4 The 1800 U.S. Census in Straban Township, Adams County, recorded John Beecher with this household:
Males (born)
Under 10 (1791-1800) = 3 (sons Peter, David, George)
26-44 (1756-1774) = 1 (father John)
Females (born)
Under 10 (1791-1800) = 1 (daughter Elizabeth)
10-15 (1785-1790) = 2 (daughters Catherine and Sarah Rebecca)
26-44 (1756-1774) = 1 (wife Elizabeth).

18. Newspaper: The Sprig of Liberty: List of Letters Remaining in the Post Office at Gettysburg: John Beecher, John Beecher, jun., 16 Oct 1806, Gettysburg, Adams, PA.

19. An inventory settling his father Henry Beher's estate was filed at the same time his will was filed. on 28 Jan 1807 in , Adams, PA. 28 Debts owed to Henry:
Bond note on John Beecher due 1 May 1798 for $66.67
Bond note on John Beecher due 1 May 1799 for $66.67
Bond note on John Beecher due 1 May 1800 for $66.67
Bond note on John Beecher due 1 May 1801 for $66.67
Bond note on John Beecher due 1 May 1802 for $66.67
Bond note on John Beecher due 1 May 1803 for $66.67
Bond note on John Beecher due 1 May 1804 for $66.67
Bond note on John Beecher due 1 May 1805 for $66.67
1 note on Henry Beecher Jun. for $60.00
1 note on Frederick Beeher & Int. $63.00
Debt due from Jacob Bringman $8.00.

20. Census in 1810 in Straban Twp., Adams, PA. 29 The 1810 U.S. Census in Straban Township, Adams County, recorded John Beaker with this household:
Males (born)
10-15 (1795-1800) = 1 (son George)
16-25 (1785-1794) = 1 (son David or Peter)
26-44 (1766-1784) = 1 (son John)
45 & over (<=1765) = 1 (father John)
Females (born)
Under 10 (1801-1810) = 1 (daughter Sarah Rebecca)
45 & over (<=1765) = 1 (wife Elizabeth).

21. Census in 1820 in Straban Twp., Adams, PA. 30 John Beecher and sons Jacob, George, and David are listed as neighbors in the 1820 U.S. Census in Straban Township.

John Beecher's household had:
Males (born)
45 & over (<=1775) = 1 (father John)
Females (born)
16-25 (1795-1804) = 1 (daughter Sarah Rebecca)
45 & over (<=1775) = 1 (wife Elizabeth)

Jacob Beecher's household had:
Males (born)
Under 10 (1811-1820) = 2 (sons)
26-44 (1776-1794) = 1 (father Jacob)
Females (born)
Under 10 (1811-1820) = 1 (daughter)
26-44 (1776-1794) = 1 (wife)

George Beecher's household had:
Males (born)
16-25 (1795-1804) = 1 (father George)
Females (born)
10-15 (1805-1810) = 1 (daughter Elisabeth)
26-44 (1776-1794) = 1 (wife Anna)

David Beecher's household had:
Males (born)
Under 10 (1811-1820) = 1 (son Samuel)
16-18 (1802-1804) = 1 (?)
26-44 (1776-1794) = 1 (father David)
Under 10 (1811-1820) =
10-15 (1805-1810) = 2 (daughters Elizabeth & Ann Margaret)
16-25 (1795-1804) = 1 (wife Anna Maria).

22. Property in 1821 in Straban Twp., Adams, PA. He transferred 130 acres to George Saltzgiver. [NOTE: the 1830 census lists in Straban Townshp a George Saltsgiver age 60-69.].

23. Property on 24 Apr 1821 in Codorus Twp., York, PA. Grantor Peter Beecher and wife Catharine of Mount Pleasant Township, Adams County, sold to grantee John Beecher, Straban Township, Adams County, for £1600 130 acres 100 p. in Codorus Township, the land sold by Peter Klinefelder to Peter Beecher 1817. Original deed in file 11154.

24. Newspaper: Gettysburg Compiler: "The tax assessed for the year 1824 is as follows, viz: John Beecher, Sen., Straban, 498 38., 2 Feb 1825, Gettysburg, Adams, PA. 31

25. Property on 26 Jun 1826 in Codorus Twp., York, PA. Grantor John Beecher, Sr. and wife Elizabeth of Straban Township, Adams County, sold to grantee Peter Runk, for $800 130 acres 100 p. in Codorus Township, the land sold by Peter Klinefelder to Peter Beecher 1817, and then Peter Beecher to John Beecher 1821. Original deed in file 11154.

26. Newspaper: Adams Sentinel: Conowago Woolen Factory, David Beecher, 30 Aug 1826, Gettysburg, Adams, PA. 32 Conowago Woolen Factory
The Subscribers will carry on, at the Fulling Mill of David Beecher, siuate on Conowage creek, in Franklin township, Adams county, the Carding, Spinning, Weaving, Dyeing, Fulling & Dressing of Cloth, or either of them. Woolen Cloth, Blankets, Flannells, Cassinetts and Linseys, will be manufactured in a neat and durable manner. Indigo blue will be dyed, if requested.

For the convenience of those at a distance, Wool for Carding or Manufacturing, and Cloth for Fulling, will be received at the following places, viz. Thos. McKnight's store, in Franklin township; John Gilbert's tavern, in Menallen; Messrs. Wurt's tavern, on the road from Hunters-town to Chambersburg; Jacob Grass' tavern, in Hunters-Town; John Beecher's, in Straban; Wm. E. Camp's store, and Bernhart Gilbert's Tavern, in Gettysburg. --- Wool to be carded into rolls, will be returned in one week --- and cloth when finished.
Robert Morrison
David Beecher
May 9. 5m.

27. Property in 1827 in Straban Twp., Adams, PA. He sold 20 acres to Jacob Bucher.

28. Census in 1830 in Straban Twp., Adams, PA. 33 Listed is John Beicher with this household:
Males (born)
70-79 (1751-1760) = 1 father John
Females (born)
5-9 (1821-1825) = 1 granddaughter (or daughter)
10-14 (1816-1820) = 1 granddaughter (or daughter)
70-79 (1751-1760) = 1 mother.

29. Fact: State Representative Thaddeus Stevens read a petition from John Beecher to the House of Representatives, 2 Feb 1835, Harrisburg, Dauphin, PA. 34 In "Journal of the Forty-Fifth House of Representatives of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania" on 2 Feb 1835, Thaddeus Stevens, State Representative from Adams County is recorded:
"Mr. Stevens presented the petition and documents of John Beecher of Adams county, stating his services in the revolutionary war, and praying for relief."

30. Fact: PA Law honoring John's Revolutionary War pension., 17 Mar 1835, , , Pennsylvania, USA. 35 A law passed in 1835 at the state capitol mentions John Beecher's service in the Revolutionary War:
"The State Treasurer is hereby authorized to pay to PHILIP KEESEY of Montgomery county, JOHN BEECHER and JANE HUNTER of Adams county, a gratuity of forty dollars, to each immediately in full for their revolutionary services. 17 Mar 1835."

31. He has conflicting death information of 14 Nov 1838 and , Adams, PA. 36 Both John and Elisabeth were originally buried in the Old Reformed and Lutheran Graveyard in Arendtsville but were later moved to the Fairview Cemetery in Arendtsville. The stones were read by Rev. N. A. Gobrecht and the list published in 1909 in the Pennsylvania German Magazine, Vol. 10 - Paper VI, page 15. John's death date was recorded as 14 Nov 1838 and his age 90 y. 2 m. "A soldier of the Revolution." [Rev. Gobrecht was married to a granddaughter of John and Elisabeth.]

However, it is felt this tombstone transcription must be a mistake because on 13 Jun 1842 both the Republican Compiler and Adams Sentinel published the death notice for John Beecher, and in that year, probate of John's estate began in Adams County.

32. Fact: Not found in 1840 Census in Menallen Township: no listing for John Beecher, but does for his sons John, Peter, and George., 1840, Menallen Twp., Adams, PA.

33. File 2271. John Beecher died 1842. Proved 11 Jun 1842 executor Anthony Deardorff. Inventory field 21 Oct 1843. Vendue filed 4 Jul 1842. Account settled 27 Nov 1842. on 11 Jun 1842 in , Adams, PA.

34. Obituary: Adams Sentinel on 13 Jun 1842 in Gettysburg, Adams, PA. 5 Died. On Weds. last, John Beecher, Sr. of Menallen Twp., in the 85th year of his age - a revolutionary patriot.

35. Obituary: Republican Compiler: Another Revolutionary Patriot Gone: Died, Jun 2, 1842, Mr. John Beecher, Sr., Menallen Township, this county, aged 85 years. on 13 Jun 1842 in Gettysburg, Adams, PA. 9

36. Obituary: Reading Adler: Staub. am 8ten June, in Menallen Taunschip, Adams County, Sr. Johann Biecher, sen. ein Revolutionär patriot, im 85sten Jahre seines Alters. on 5 Jul 1842 in Reading, Berks, Pennsylvania, USA. 8 Translation: on June 8th, in Menallen Township, Adams County, Sr. Johann Biecher, sen. a revolutionary patriot, in the 85th year of his age.

37. Court: Orphans Court Records are in Vol. J pg 154, Vol. F pg 146. Acct. Docket is Vol. B pg 383. in 1843 in , Adams, PA.

38. Newspaper: Gettysburg Compiler: Estate of John Beecher, deceased., 24 Apr 1843, Gettysburg, Adams, PA. 37 Estate of John Beecher, deceased.
Letters of Administration on the estate of John Beecher, late of Franklin township, deceased, having been granted to the subscriber, residing in the same township; all persons knowing themselves indebed to said estate are requested to make payment, and those holding claims will present them properly authenticated to
April 10, 1843 6:29.

39. Estate: 21 Oct 1843, , Adams, PA. 13 38 Administration 2271, John Beecher, Sr. filed 21 Oct. 1843. Sureties: David Beecher, Anthony Deardorf and John Gilbert. Inventory dated 14 June 1842. Purchasers were David Beecher, David Beecher, Jr., George Beecher, James Russell, Jesse Beecher, Samuel Beecher and the widow Saltzgiver. [We believe that John Gilbert was a brother-in-law of David Beecher.] He was living with his son, David, when he died.

40. Orphans Court on 27 Nov 1843 in , Adams, PA. 38 39 "Came into Court Anthony Deardorff Administrator of the estate of John Beecher Deceased and produced a document of his Administration as Settled with the Registers of this county which account appears balanced whereupon it is considered by the Court and ordered that the Same be and is herly confirmed."

41. Newspaper: The Sentinel, 4 Dec 1843, Gettysburg, Adams, PA. 40 REGISTER'S NOTICES
Notice is hereby Given,
To all Legatees and other persons concerned, that the ADMINISTRATION ACCOUNTS of the deceased persons hereinafter mentioned will be presented to the Orphan's Court of Adams County, for confirmation and allowance, on Monday the 27thday of November next, viz:
The account of Anthony Deardorff, Administrator of the Estate of John Beecher, deceased.

42. Magazine: The Pennsylvania-German: article about bibles of John Christopher Gobrecht and John Beecher owned by N.A. Gobrecht, Apr 1908, , , Pennsylvania, USA. 41 N. A. Gobrecht, Altoona, Pa., has in his possession a German Bible printed at Zurich, Switzerland, by Emanuel and Johann Rudolff, printers, 1729. It was brought over by John Christopher Gobrecht, the ancestor born October, 1733, at Angerstein, Hanover, Germany; landed September 11, 1753, at Philadelphia, from the ship "Queen of Denmark," Geo. Parish, captain; settled in Bucks county; studied theology under Rev. John George Alsentz, and was licensed 1764 as the first Reformed student under the care of Coetus in Pennsylvania; died at Hanover in 1815. He has also another German Bible printed by Christopher Sauer, Germantown, Pa., 1763, having family record of John Beecher and Elizabeth Keplinger, the ancestors of the numerous Beecher families in Adams and York counties, Pa. John Beecher was a soldier of the Revolution, died in his 90th year, August 1838, and was buried at Arendtsville, Pa. This Bible comes to N. A. Gobrecht by his wife, who is a Beecher descendant of the third generation. Both German Bibles are in good condition and are in the hands of a worthy member of the Pennsylvania German Society of Pennsylvania and are cherished by him as family heirlooms.

43. Magazine: The Pennsylvania-German Vol. 10: documentation of Gilbert-Fox-Beecher graves, 1909, Lititz, Lancaster, PA. 10 In 1909, N.A. Gobrecht Altoona, Pa., a descendant of Jacob Gilbert and son-in-law David Beecher, visited his Gilbert, Fox, and Beecher ancestors' graves in Arendtsville, and documented the cemetery in Volume 10 of the Pennsylvania-German magazine entitled "Paper VI, Tombstone Inscriptions of Persons Born Prior to 1800 and Past 16 years at Death at Arendtsville, Adams County, Pa."

Part I in Old Reformed and Lutheran Graveyard

1. Beecher, Elizabeth; n. Keplinger; wf. John Beecher; d. Aug 14, 1845. Aged 90 y.
2. Beecher, John; d. Nov 14, 1838. Aged 90 y. 2 m. "A soldier of the Revolution."
(list continues)
10. Fox, Christian: d. Feb 17, 1795. Aged 81 y.
11. Fox, Magdalena: d. Dec 9, 1802. Aged 76 y.
12. Fox, John Jacob: d. Nov. 2., 1828. Aged 58 y. 4 m. 2 d.
(list continues)
15. Gilbert, Jacob; d. Feb 9, 1831. Aged 74 y. 7 m. 11 d.

Part III Bodies exhumed from the old graveyard and reinterred in "Fairview Cemetery" at Arendtsville, Pa.
(partial list shown here)
4. Beecher, David; d. April 13, 1880. Aged 86 y. 7 m. 5 d.
5. Beecher, Anna Mary Gilbert; d. July 30, 1887. Aged 90 y. 3 m. 4 d.

Gobrecht stated: "This graveyard was started by the pioneer settlers in the year 1780. There are over 1200 graves, over which there are no stones or markers, many of these having been broken off or pulled out by vandal hands to be piled up, with few exceptions in the corner of the old graveyard. The names of many of the dead are still preserved in the living descendants. We are informed that no parish record antedating 1870 is extant."

John married Elizabeth Keplinger, daughter of Henry Keplinger and Unknown. (Elizabeth Keplinger was born in 1755 in , , Pennsylvania, USA,10 42 43 44 died on 14 Aug 1845 in Arendtsville, Adams, PA 10 42 44 45 and was buried in Arendtsville: Old Reformed & Lutheran Graveyard, Adams, PA 6 10 44.)


1 The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, International Genealogical Index (R) (Copyright (c) 1980, 2002, data as of November 17, 2005).

2 Records of Sharon Nickol Swope (

3 Christ Reformed Church, Littlestown, Adams, Pennsylvania.

4 1800 United States Census, Pennsylvania, Adams County, Straban Township, Series: M32 Roll: 35 Page: 497.

5 The Adams Sentinel (Gettysburg, PA), Gettysburg, Adams, Pennsylvania, June 13, 1842.

6 Research of Marcia S. Wilson, great grandaughter of Mary Jane Beecher Gibson ( and emails from Macia S. Wilson), Telephone call on 30 Mar 1997 between Lorraine Beecher Fiece and Marcia Sandmeyer Wilson, recorded in notes in the Beecher surname file at Adams County Historical Society library.

7 Find A Grave,

8 Reading Adler Newspaper (Reading, PA) (Reading, Berks, Pennsylvania.), 5 Jul 1842, page 2. Death of Johann Biecher.

9 Republican Compiler (Gettysburg, PA), Gettysburg, Adams County, Pennsylvania, 13 Jun 1842, death of John Beecher.

10 N. A. Gobrecht, "Paper VI, Tombstone Inscriptions of Persons Born Prior to 1800 and Past 16 years at Death at Arendtsville, Adams County, Pa.," The Pennsylvania-German, Volume 10, 1909; Page 98. Online free at Google Books:

11 Adams County, Pennsylvania Courthouse, Book A:376, Henry's will written 23 Feb. 1795, filed under Becher.

12 The Sprig of Liberty (Gettysburg, PA), 16 Oct 1806, page 4.

13 Records of Mary Lou Mariner (Frederick, MD).

14 Pennsylvania, Church and Town Records, 1708-1985 ( Original data: Historic Pennsylvania Church and Town Records. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania: Historical Society of Pennsylvania.), Reel 671, Adams --> Littlestown --> St. John's Evangelical Lutheran Church, printed page 37, online image 47 of 279.

15 William J. Hinke, Church Record of The Conewago Or Christ Church Congregation Near Littlestown Adams County Pennsylvania 1747-1871 (Online in Books), Page 11.

16 Adams County Church Records of the 18th Century (Family Line Publications, Westminister, MD 21157. No year.), Page 86.

17 Scharf, J. Thomas, History of Western Maryland; being a history of Frederick, Montgomery, Carroll, Washington, Allegany, and Garrett Counties from the earliest period to the present day; including biographical sketches of their representative men (Regional Pub. Co., 1968. Reprint of the 1882 ed. 2 volumes (1560 p.)), Page 1190. John Beecher listed in Captain William Heyser's company in the Revolutionary War.

18 Charles Francis Stein, The German Battalion of the American Revolution (The Society for the History of the Germans in Maryland.), Online at Loyola Notre Dame Library, 200 Winston Avenue, Baltimore, MD 21212 .

19 Stemmons, John & E. Diane., Pennsylvania in 1780: A State-Wide Index of Circa 1780 Pennsylvania Tax Lists (1978. P.O. Box 20531, Salt Lake City, UT 84119.), Page 27.

20 Pennsylvania, Tax and Exoneration, 1768-1801 ( Pennsylvania, Tax and Exoneration, 1768-1801 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2011.
Original data:
Tax & Exoneration Lists, 1762–1794. Series No. 4.61; Records of the Office of the Comptroller General, RG-4. Pennsylvania Historical & Museum Commission, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.), PA > York > Heidelberg, Beacher, John.

21 Adams County Historical Society (Gettysburg, Adams County, Pennsylvania.
PO Box 4325, Gettysburg, PA 17325, Beecher File, sheet with tax records.

22 York County Courthouse, Pennsylvania, Deed Book 2E: 147.

23 Pennsylvania, Tax and Exoneration, 1768-1801 ( Pennsylvania, Tax and Exoneration, 1768-1801 [database on-line]. Provo, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2011.
Original data:
Tax & Exoneration Lists, 1762–1794. Series No. 4.61; Records of the Office of the Comptroller General, RG-4. Pennsylvania Historical & Museum Commission, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.), PA > York > Germany Township, Beecher Henry, Beecher Frederick, Beecher John.

24 1790 United States Census, Pennsylvania, York County, Berwick/Cumberland Townships, Series: M637 Roll: 9 Page: 462.

25 The Pennsylvania Herald & York General Advertiser (York, York County, Pennsylvania.), 27 May 1795.

26, Pennsylvania, U.S. Direct Tax Lists, 1798 (United States Direct Tax of 1798: Tax Lists for the State of Pennsylvania. M372, microfilm, 24 rolls. Records of the Internal Revenue Service, 1791-2006, Record Group 58. National Archives and Records Administration, Washington, D.C.), John Becher, Straban Township.

27 History of Cumberland and Adams Counties, Pennsylvania (Warren, Beers & Co; Chicago, IL; 1886), Page 333.

28 Adams County, Pennsylvania Courthouse, Will Book A:376.

29 1810 United States Census, Pennsylvania, Adams County, Straban Township, Series: M252 Roll: 44 Page: 43.

30 1820 United States Census, Pennsylvania, Adams County, Straban Township, Series: M33 Roll: 96 Page: 52.

31 Gettysburg Compiler (Gettysburg, Adams, Pennsylvania.), 2 Feb 1825, page 7.

32 The Adams Sentinel (Gettysburg, PA), Gettysburg, Adams, Pennsylvania, 30 Aug 1826, page 1.

33 1830 United States Census, Pennsylvania, Adams County, Straban Township, Series: M19 Roll: 143 Page: 51.

34 Journal of the Forty-Fifth House of Representatives of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania (Harrisburg, PA. 1834-1835.), Page 288.

35 Limric, Vi P., Laws of Pennsylvania Genealogical Data (Copyright Vi P. Limric 1998.), 1835, Paragraph Number 53.

36 N. A. Gobrecht, "Paper VI, Tombstone Inscriptions of Persons Born Prior to 1800 and Past 16 years at Death at Arendtsville, Adams County, Pa.," The Pennsylvania-German, Volume 10, 1909; Page 98.

37 Gettysburg Compiler (Gettysburg, Adams, Pennsylvania.), 24 Apr 1843, page 4. Estate Noice for John Beecher.

38 Adams County, Pennsylvania Courthouse.

39, Pennsylvania, Probate Records, 1683-1994 (Images of court probate book pages online at .), Orphan's Court Vol. F. page 146, image 583 of 1061 at .

40 The Adams Sentinel (Gettysburg, PA), Gettysburg, Adams, Pennsylvania, 4 Dec 1843 edition.

41 "Clippings from Current News," The Pennsylvania-German, Apr 1908, page 188; (

42 Pennsylvania Church and Town Records, 1708-1985 ( Original from Historical Society of Pennsylvania, Historic Pennsylvania Church and Town Records.), Gettysburg: St. James Evangelical Lutheran Church, Adams County, Pennsylvania, USA

43 Gettysburg Times (Gettysburg, PA), 17 Sep 1938, page 5. Backgrounds of Adams County, No. 57.

44 Find A Grave,

45 The Adams Sentinel (Gettysburg, PA), Gettysburg, Adams, Pennsylvania, Aug 25, 1845.

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