Was Jacob Herzler the first Amish bishop in America?

The Amish history of Berks County, Pennsylvania, is important to the Somerset County, Pennsylvania, Amish history. The Somerset settlement, in the southwest of the state, emanated from the the Berks settlement in the east of the state. The January 2017 issue of The Historian carries an article on the Berks County history by an Amish historian of eastern Pennsylvania, Isaac L. Beiler. In “The Amish Church in Greater Berks County in the 1700s,” Beiler includes a section on who were… Read More »

Early Amish immigrants to Somerset County, Penn.

In the October 2016  issue of The Historian, Paul S. Kurtz gives an interesting perspective on the early Amish immigrants to Somerset County, Pennsylvania. He takes us back to Berks County, Pennsylvania, from where the first Somerset County Amish emigrated. Kurtz shows the development of the writing of the Berks County Amish history, indicates clusters of early Amish settlement in greater Berks County, and discusses their environment as shaped by William Penn and the later Penn generations and the Revolutionary… Read More »

The July 2016 Issue of the Historian Includes Tables on Amish Demographics in the Casselman Valley in the Late 1700s

In the July 2016  issue of The Historian, I attempted to deal with the affect of other denominations on the Amish church in the Casselman River area in the late 1700s and the numerical viability of the congregation. The Amish church experienced an exodus of nearly one hundred persons, mostly to the German Baptists and the Mennonites from 1772 to 1800. The article concludes that there may have been, in the River Amish church in the year 1800, about thirty-two families consisting of… Read More »

Claude E. Yoder Collection: Meetinghouses and the Voice of the Church

Claude E. Yoder (1899-1996), an Amish farmer in the Casselman River Valley of Somerset County, Pennsylvania, preserved a small collection of historical and genealogical documents, photos and mementos.   Mixed among these assorted notes and records are two aging slips of paper that have been kept carefully folded and stored for many years. The first paper is a handwritten note without a title that provides details about the “advice” of the “Pa” and “Md” “meetings” in regard to the “meeting houses.”… Read More »

Read about 57 Amish Mennonite families who settled in the Casselman Valley from 1773 to 1800

The January 2016 issue of The Historian is packed with reference material on the Amish history of the Casselman River Valley of Somerset County, Pennsylvania. James L. Yoder traces the pattern of Amish immigration into the Casselman Valley from eastern Pennsylvania, beginning with the first purchase of land by an Amishman, Michael Beeghley. He lists 57 Amish Mennonite families who settled in the Casselman Valley from 1773 to 1800. An additional feature is “Names of Amish Mennonites Identified in the U.S.… Read More »