THE BROBST CHRONICLES
A HISTORY OF THE EARLY BROBST/PROBST
FAMILIES IN PENNSYLVANIA
and Table of Contents to The Brobst Chronicles
One - The Early Swiss/German Probsts
Two - The History Of The German Immigration To America
Three - The Struggles of the Settlers
Four - The Early American Pennsylvania Brobsts
Chapter Five - Children of Philipp Jacob Probst
Chapter Six - The Other Children of Philipp Jacob Probst
Chapter Seven: The Other Children of Christophel Probst
Chapter Eight: Other Interesting Brobstology Intermarriages
This is the story of the Brobst family genealogy (Brobstology!),
from Hans Probst, who lived in Switzerland in the 1500s, through Rudolph,
Barthel, and Christophel who lived in Germany; through Philipp Jacob who
brought his family to America in the early 1700s; through his sons Jean
Michael, Jean Valentine, and Jean Martin, and his brother, Johann Michael,
all of whom settled in Pennsylvania; and their children and grandchildren.
Some of them have interesting tales to tell, others just disappeared from
view. The entire period of time was interesting, and so this story is
a combination of history and genealogy.
But what's all this "Probst" business? My name is "Brobst",
not "Probst." It's been "Brobst" for generations. Well, the truth is that
the family name was "Probst" long before it became "Brobst". "Brobst"
is just an Americanization of "Probst".
The "Swiss Family Probst" traces back to the 1500s, but
the name was converted to Brobst, although only in some cases, with the
German emigration to America around the early 1700s. Read on to find out
how that happened.
Like most family histories, there are many gaps and inconsistencies
in the Brobst genealogy, and sorting them out is often frustrating and
sometimes impossible. Even the spelling of names is controversial. Several
different spellings of the name of Philipp Jacob, one of our two primary
immigrant ancestors, are found in the records. In this report, I have
generally used the spelling as recorded in the archives of the Lutheran
Church in Kandel, The Palatinate, Germany.
This report is part genealogy, part history, part mystery.
It covers religious persecution, indenturement, Indian attacks, real estate
fraud, survival, and family flight. It's a story of others, as well, such
as William Penn, Daniel Boone, and even Abraham Lincoln. It's a story
about Martin Luther and King Louis XIV, and about many others who had
such a direct influence on the fate of the German immigrants.
It's not a genealogical report in the strict sense, in that
I've not included any "proofs" of the thousands of births, marriages,
and deaths of Brobsts. And it's not full of "begats". The report does
contain a great deal of genealogical information, but it was written primarily
as a history of Brobst and Probst ancestors. It lists all of the Probsts
who came to America in the early 1700s, their immediate ancestors in Germany
and Switzerland, and their descendants through at least the early- to
mid-1800s. The “begats” may be found in the 18,000 names listed in the
Brobst Family Histori cal Registry data base on the internet at http://homepages.rootsweb.com/~brobst/
Or you may contact directly the author of this report.
Genealogical genetics: "If your parents never had children,
chances are you won't, either." (Dick Cavett)
One of the very few advantages of having an uncommon name
is that the genealogical mining of historical records for dead relatives
is easier with names in the thousands rather than the millions!! We're
lucky to be so few in numbers. There are fewer than 800 Brobsts currently
listed in the nation's telephone books. If our names were Smith or Jones,
this task would never have been undertaken!
As far as any of the records show, all Brobsts are related.
They all descend from either Philipp Jacob Probst or his brother Johann
Michael Probst, both of whom emigrated with their sister Elisabetha Margaretha
to America in 1732. Their family name was changed to Brobst by the immigration
clerks in Philadelphia. Other Probsts came also, but they retained their
Chapter I of this report discusses the early Swiss and German
Probsts. It follows their origination near Bern, Switzerland, and their
subsequent migration into southeastern Germany and later to southwestern
Germany. Chapter II covers why the Probsts left Germany for America. Things
were really bad in Germany, but the voyages were worse.
Chapter III presents the history of what the Probsts faced
when they arrived here -- wilderness, starvation, Indian attacks. Had
they known what they would face when they arrived in America, they might
well have stayed in Germany. Thankfully for us, their descendants, they
Chapter IV talks about the family relationships between
the early American Probsts and their German neighbors and friends. Travel
and transportation of property was difficult in those days, and the first
few generations stayed put where they first settled.
Chapters V and VI present some specific information about
the children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren of the immigrant
Philipp Jacob Probst. Chapter VII does the same for his brother Johann
Michael Probst and his sister Elisabetha Margaretha (Probst) Vossellman.
In Chapter VIII, there is a discussion of many of the influences
that affected the Probsts and Brobsts in Pennsylvania. Some other information
of this type may be found in the several appendi ces. "
Ancestors -- Without Them We'd Be Nothing!" (Donna Kilroy)
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