Genealogy has become a hobby for me over the last 10 years. For me, it's like a puzzle, I love fitting the pieces together. But over the years, I've researched a lot that does not pertain to our family lines. Some for extended family, some for close friends, and some because I was trying to rule out lines to figure out where our line went exactly. I do not want these notes on my Heather's Genealogy Notes blog - because they are not our lines. But I do like to share all of my research, in case it benefits others. That is what this blog is for - research I have done that does not apply to our own family lines, but may be helpful for someone else.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Oberdorfs in Floyd's History Of North'd Co

OBERDORF.  The Oberdorf family has been identified with that part
of Northumberland county now known as Upper Augusta township since the
early days, and there was born Peter C. Oberdorf, who now carries on an
extensive real estate and insurance business in Sunbury, and is a
director of the Sunbury Trust & Safe Deposit Company. Among the
prosperous farmers of that township at the present day is George Forrest
Oberdorf, and Elmer E. Oberdorf, now living retired in Sunbury, was also
engaged in farming until recently.
The founder of the Oberdorf family in America after emigrating
settled in Longswamp township, Berks Co., Pa., where apparently he died
comparatively young, or in middle life. One Catharine Oberdorf, probably
his widow, was married (second) to Martin Warfel, of Augusta township,
Northumberland Co., Pa.  On April 26, 1796, Martin Warfel and Catharine,
his wife, of Augusta township, sold to Peter Oberdorf, Sr., the pioneer
of the Northumberland county family, a tract of 306 acres and 72 perches
of land then in Augusta (now Upper Augusta) township.  Most of this land
is still in the family name.
Peter Oberdorf, Jr. (son of the pioneer), made his last will and
testament Sept. 17, 1842; sons Peter (3) and George were appointed
executors. George Oberdorf willed his estate divided in six equal
shares, legatees as follows: Brother Peter, of Augusta township,
Northumberland Co., Pa.; Jacob, of Northumberland county; John, of Berks
county; Magdalena, who married Jacob Carl, also of Longswamp township,
Berks county; Catharine, who married John Hoffman, and lived in
Ruscombmanor township, Berks county; and my mother, Catharine,
intermarried with Martin Warfel, in Augusta township. Peter Oberdorf,
brother, and George Bright, a trusted friend of Sunbury borough, were
the executors. This will was made Jan. 3, 1800, and he died soon
Peter Oberdorf (evidently the son of the pioneer referred to as
Peter, Jr.), the great-grandfather of Peter C., born April 20, 1772,
lived in Upper Augusta township, on the farm now owned by his grandson,
George Forrest Oberdorf.  He was a farmer, and was known in the locality
as "Little Peter," to distinguish him from his son, who was known as
"Big Peter." He died April 22, 1853, and is buried in the old  cemetery
at Sunbury.  His wife, Elizabeth, born April 3, 1766, died Dec. 31,
1811.  They had children as follows: John settled on the north branch of
the Susquehanna river; Joseph lived in New York State; Peter is
mentioned below; George lived and died on the old homestead; Elizabeth
married Jonathan Stroh; Catharine married Abraham Moore; Margaret
married Gilbert Deats; Mrs. Brewer moved with her husband to New York
State (they had sons Peter and George W.).
Peter Oberdorf, son of Peter and Elizabeth, was a native of Upper
Augusta township and is buried at the M. E. Church at Klinesgrove. He
was a prosperous farmer, owning three valuable tracts, one of 247 acres,
his homestead farm of 165 acres, and what was known, as the Bakeoven
Hill farm, adjoining Pomfret Manor cemetery, which consisted of about
two hundred acres, now owned by William H. Druckenmiller. Mr. Oberdorf
was not only enterprising and farsighted in business but also
intelligent and public-spirited in matters affecting the welfare of the
community - a trait none too common in those days. He was one of eight
voters in his township to advocate by ballot the establishment of the
free school system at a time when free education was a most unpopular
and misunderstood cause, his fellow voters on that question being Elijah
Kline, Jacob Clark, Col. John Snyder, Samuel Bloom, Samuel Awl and two
others whose names have been forgotten. He was a Lutheran member of the
Zion Church at Sunbury, and has a monument on the Oberdorf family burial
plot, where several generations of the family are interred. He was a
soldier in the war of 1812. He married Mary Hauser, who bore him
children as follows: Samuel is mentioned below; Martin, mentioned below,
settled near the homestead, where he died; Jeremiah, who was a school
teacher, died in young manhood; David, who never married, lived and died
on the homestead; Mary, born Jan. 1, 1820, died Jan. 31, 1908,
unmarried; Eliza, born June 25, 1825, died Feb. 6, 1883, unmarried;
Susanna died unmarried.
Samuel Oberdorf was born April 27, 1815, in Upper Augusta township,
and died June 10, 1884. He is buried at the M. E. Church at Klinesgrove.
He was a lifelong farmer, owning one of his father's three farms, a
tract of over 240 acres. A Presbyterian in religious connection, he
joined the church at Rushtown in his earlier years, later uniting with
the church at Sunbury.  He married Rhoda C. Campbell, who was born Jan.
22, 1818, daughter of Christopher Campbell, and died Sept. 12, 1900, in
her eighty-third year. Twelve children blessed this union, namely:
Oliver P., born June 9, 1839, died while serving in the army; Isaac C.,
born May 9, 1841, died May 20, 1865, in Upper Augusta township; Mary E.,
born March 29, 1843, has never married; Peter C., born Dec. 7, 1844, is
mentioned below; Victoria Isabelle, born March 13, 1847, died July 21,
1862; Omar, born Jan. 29, 1846, died March 29, 1846; Joseph C., born
March 1, 1849, died Jan. 28, 1882, of typhoid fever; Marcy Hamilton,
born April 19, 1850, died March 19, 1856; Prof. Charles D. is mentioned
below; William R., born April 29; 1853, a merchant of Sunbury, married
Olive Wolverton and has two sons, Calvin (who graduated from the Sunbury
high school and from Bucknell College, at Lewisburg, and is now a civil
engineer; he is a member of Lodge No. 22, F. & A.M.) and


Robert (who graduated from the Sunbury high school with the class of
1911); Susanna F., born Sept. 1, 1854, married E. M. Eckman, of Rush
township; Samuel M., born Dec. 25, 1856, is a retired farmer of
Riverside, Pennsylvania.
PETER C. OBERDORF was born Dec. 7, 1844, and was reared to farm
life, meantime obtaining his early education in the local public
schools. Later he attended Dickinson Seminary, at Williamsport, Pa., and
then locating at Klinesgrove engaged in the general merchandise
business, which he continued for a period of six years. Thence he came
to Sunbury, where he formed a partnership with P. H. Moore and D. H.
Snyder, under the firm name of D. H. Snyder & Co.  They successfully
conducted a general store on Market street for nine years, the business
being carried on under the original style until clerks bought out the
founders and formed a new association, S. H. Snyder & Co. Mr. Oberdorf
then entered the brick manufacturing business, which he continued until
the silk mill was erected, when he sold his ground to the company.  He
was in the brick business about eight years in all. He has since been
engaged in the real estate and insurance line, in which he has made a
notable success. As agent of the Sunbury Mutual Fire Insurance Company
he has built up its business from insignificance to profitable
proportions, having taken hold of its business when it had less than two
hundred thousand dollars worth of insurance in force; it has now
considerably over a million. His real estate and insurance transactions
have attained large proportions, and he is interested in local finance
as a director of the Sunbury Trust & Safe Deposit Company.
Mr. Oberdorf is well known socially, being a member of Lodge No.
22, F. & A.M., and of the Temple Club of Sunbury; of the Americus Club
of Sunbury; and of the Rolling Green Country Club. He is a member of the
Presbyterian Church of Sunbury, and served as trustee of the
congregation for a number of years. Politically he is a Republican, and
he has served as auditor of the town.
CHARLES D. OBERDORF, son of Samuel, was born July 17, 1851.  He
began teaching at the age of seventeen, on Bald Top, near Danville,
afterwards teaching two years near the Odd Fellows Orphanage in Upper
Augusta township. For the next two years he was a tutor in the private
school of N. Foster Browne, one year at Sunbury, and one in Lewistown,
preparing at the same time for college.  Entering Princeton University
in the fall of 1874, he graduated in 1878; served as principal of the
Mount Carmel high school for the next three years, and was then elected
supervisory principal of the Sunbury schools, serving as such for twelve
years. He was then elected borough superintendent of the Sunbury
schools, for two terms of three years each.  Since that time, from 1900
to 1911 inclusive, he has been principal of the Mount Carmel high
school.  On July 15, 1905, Professor Oberdorf married Olive A. Ruch, of
Northumberland, and they have one child, Rhoda Jane, born Jan. 16, 1910.
He is a member of Masonic Lodge No. 22, of Sunbury.
George Oberdorf, son of Peter, Jr., was born on the homestead in
Lower Augusta township, Aug. 19, 1807, and died Feb. 28, 1866.  He and
his wife Charity are buried at the Klinesgrove M. E. Church.  He was
educated in the old pay school of his day, and trained from early life
to farming, which he began for himself in 1855, purchasing his father's
place from the estate.  He lived there all his life.  The farm then
comprised 226 acres.  Originally a Democrat, later a Whig, when the war
broke out he became a follower of Abraham Lincoln.  He helped to
establish the first public school in the township, which was built by
subscription, and he himself did much of the carpenter work, on this
school building. He served as overseer of the poor, in short he was an
all-round active and useful citizen.  In religion a Lutheran, he was a
member of St. John's Church, and was in the church council some years.
Mr. Oberdorf was married twice, first to Catharine Campbell daughter of
Robert Campbell.  She was born Jan. 12, 1812, and died May 30, 1835; she
is buried at Klinesgrove.  By this union there were two children:
Margaret born Jan. 11, 1834, who died Aug. 15, 1836; and Joseph, born
March 8, 1835, who died Aug. 4, 1835.  Mr. Oberdorf's second marriage
was to Charity Sowders, on Feb. 16, 1837.  She died Aug. 5, 1865, aged
fifty-five years, eleven months, twenty days, the mother of five
children, namely: Harriet born July 5, 1838, married Oscar Heller, and
they lived in Rush township; Mary C., born Sept. 25, 1841, married A. D.
Moore and they live at Klinesgrove, Pa.; Peter J., born Nov. 13, 1843,
died April 21, 1887, and is buried at Klinesgrove M. E. Church (he
married Lydia A. Reed, who died Dec. 8, 1888, aged thirty-nine years,
six months, four days, and their son, Frank H., born in 1873, died in
1894); George Forrest was born May 2, 1846; Elizabeth, born April 25,
1848, married Joel Rabuck, and they live in Rush township.
GEORGE FORREST OBERDORF, farmer in Upper Augusta township, at
Klinesgrove, was born May 2, 1846, on the farm he now occupies.  He was
educated in the township public schools and reared as a farmer,
beginning farming for himself in the spring of 1887, on the homestead
where he has since continued to live. In March, 1887, the homestead farm
passed into his possession. It was then a tract of 226 acres, of which
he sold off forty-nine acres, subsequently adding thirty-three acres. He
and his brother Peter J. at first owned the farm in partnership and
built the present house, to which


George F. Oberdorf has since made additions. The old house which Peter
Oberdorf built about 1810, on this tract, is still standing and in a
good state of preservation.  It is a log house, now weather-boarded. In
1856 George Oberdorf, his son, remodeled it, and tore out two big stone
chimneys that extended from the first floor up. It is now occupied by
George C. Oberdorf, of the fourth generation. In 1899 George F. Oberdorf
rebuilt the, barn, and in 1909 added a big straw shed. His land is
fertile and adapted to general farming as well as fruit growing. He has
a peach orchard of 300 trees. Mr. Oberdorf has been active in various
interests in his locality and is one of the best known men in the
township. He is a Republican and was school director for six years,
serving a year as president and the same length of time as treasurer of
the board. He is now president of the Augusta Mutual Fire Insurance
Company, whose headquarters are in Sunbury, a well conducted company, of
which Saul Shipman is secretary and David Cooper treasurer. The board
consists of six directors. Mr. Oberdorf is an Odd Fellow, belonging to
Snydertown Lodge, No. 527; of which he is a past grand and at one time
was most active in its work. He and his family have worshiped in the
Methodist Episcopal Church at Klinesgrove since 1876, and Mr. Oberdorf
is one of the pillars of the church, which he has served officially for
a number of years.
On Jan. 5, 1876, Mr. Oberdorf married Laura Alice Mettler, daughter
of Carter and Mary (Haughawout) Mettler, of Rush township, and they have
had a family of five children: Mary, who died in infancy; Harriet M., at
home; William R., at home; George C., who married Ruth A. Campbell, and
lives in the old homestead residence; and Annie, who died of pneumonia
when two and a half years old.
Martin Oberdorf, son of Peter, was horn in Upper Augusta township,
and was a farmer owning a farm of ninety acres. His death, which
occurred in 1871 in Rush township, was the result of a cowardly
shooting.  He is buried at the Methodist Church at Klinesgrove. However,
he was a member of the Reformed Church, as was his wife, Susan (Evert).
They had children as follows: Henry M., of Stonington, Pa.; John E., of
Sunbury, Pa.; Mary Eliza, who died Nov. 21, 1870, aged twenty-three
years, six months, twenty-two days; William, of Iola, Kans.; Peter, who
died at Berwick, Pa.; Philip, who died at Berwick; and Elmer E.
ELMER E. OBERDORF was a farmer in Upper Augusta township, on the
farm of his grandfather, Peter Oberdorf. He was born Sept. 20, 1861, in
Rush township, attended the public schools, and has always lived on the
farm.  When his father, Martin Oberdorf, was shot he went into the
family of his grandfather, Peter, when only ten years old, and there
lived with them until they died. In the spring of 1907 he obtained the
homestead where he lived until his removal to Sunbury. He cultivated a
tract of 185 acres, and conducted his affairs successfully, also taking
an active interest in local public affairs. Politically he is a
Republican. In the spring of 1911 he came to Sunbury to live, making his
home on Catawissa avenue.
On Sept. 30, 1908, Mr. Oberdorf married Edith Shipman, daughter of
John H. and Barbara (Snyder) Shipman, and granddaughter of Jacob
Shipman, both the Shipmans being from Lower Augusta township, as was
also Barbara Snyder, daughter of Col. Thomas Snyder. Mr. Oberdorf is a
Lutheran in religious connection, and his wife is a Baptist.

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