Grau Family of Pittsburgh

Family of
Adam and Salome GRAU
of Ispringen, Baden and Pittsburgh, Pa.
by Todd A. Farmerie

Tradition among the descendants of Adam GRAU (later GRAY) of Pittsburgh tell of the family bringing their posessions on a covered wagon across the mountains from Baltimore to Pittsburgh, and settling there about 1840. Adam and his wife Solome, who were originally from Baden, in Germany, are said to have lived on Ferry St., being their during the "Great Fire". They are said to have had nine children, but the accounts of these are somewhat confused.

Little contemporary material has survifed regarding this family, but what does survive enables the account of the family to be filled out somewhat.


Origins of Adam and Solome GRAU:

Adam GRA▄ declaired his intent to become a citizen in Allegheny Co., Pa., on 30 Dec. 1836 (see below). From this we can conclude that the family arrived in America some time prior to 1834.

An index of Baden immigrants includes an Adam GRAU, who departed from the town of Ispringen, on 21 Feb. 1828, for "Nordamerika". That this is the later Pittsburgh immigrant is supported by the chronology, as well as by the information revealed in the Ispringen Parish Registers. Here we find the 12 Nov. 1821 birth of Wilhelm Peter, son of Johan Adam GRA▄ and Salomae GRA▄IN. This record, in the margin, includes the annotation "in Amerika", demonstrating that this represents the Adam who would later depart (another Adam found in these records is still there in 1829, the year after our Adam emigrated). Later we find the 13 Nov. 1825 birth of Catharina, another child of the same couple. While neither of these Ispringen births match the names of known children of Adam and Solome of Pittsburgh, the surviving account of their children is incomplete, while the dates suggest further German births have yet to be found. Likewise, the names of the parents are rare enough that it is certainly more than coincidence that here we have a couple named Adam and Solome Grau, from Baden, immigrating near the right time.

The children of Johan Adam GRA▄ and Solomae GRA▄IN have an unusual pedigree, as each of their grandparents have the same surname - GRA▄/GRA▄IN (the second being the femanine form of GRA▄), and appear to have been first cousins (with their grandmothers being sisters), as can be seen in the following table:

Wilhelm Peter GRA▄
b. 12 Nov. 1821


Catherina GRA▄IN
b. 13 Nov. 1825
Johann Adam GRA▄
b. 28 Oct. 1791
Johannes GRA▄
b. 27 Dec. 1748
d. 28 Jan. 1820
Johann Philipp GRA▄
bap. 27 Aug. 1714
d. 9 May 1799
Conradt GRA▄
d. 22 Dec. 1732
m.
Anna Maria
b. ca. 1689
d. 14 Jul. 1758
m. 27 Nov. 1736
Rosina SCHWARTZIN
b.(_)4 Apr. 1717
d. 9 Mar. 1791
Johann Georg SCHWARTZ
b. ca. 1683
d. 10 Mar 1744
m. 22 Feb. 1707
Rosina Barbara LÍSERIN
b. 14 Feb. 1682
d. 22 Sep. 1765
m. 19 Feb. 1788
Catherina GRA▄IN
b. 15 Oct. 1768
d. 9 Feb. 1833
Johannes GRA▄
b. b. ca. 1722
d. 13 Nov. 1776
(prob. Conrad GRA▄)
(d. 22 Dec. 1732)
m.
(Anna Maria)
(b. ca. 1689)
(d. 14 Jul. 1758)
m. 28 Feb. 1757
Margaretha PFINGSTAGIN
b. 2 Mar. 1731
d. 15 Dec. 1787
Hans Georg PFINGSTAG
b. ca. 1699
d. 1 Jan. 1752
m. 18 Sep. 1725
Anna Maria MÍSSNERIN
b. ca. 1701
d. 4 Dec. 1764
m. 31 Dec. 1820
Salomae GRA▄IN
b. 5 Mar. 1801
Johann Michael GRA▄
b. 21 Oct. 1753
d. 24 May 1817
Conrad GRA▄
b. ca. 1721
d. 21 Mar. 1774
(prob. Conrad GRA▄)
(d. 22 Dec. 1732)
m.
(Anna Maria)
(b. ca. 1689)
(d. 14 Jul. 1758)
m. 2 Jan. 1753
Margaretha Elisabetha KA▄TZIN
b. 8 Oct. 1730
10 Dec. 1790
Mathias KA▄TZ
b. ca. 1697
d. 24 Oct. 1750
m. 11 Feb. 1721

Eva Margaretha LÍSERIN
b. ca. 1700
d. 26 Oct. 1737
m. 23 Feb. 1779
Margaretha GRA▄IN
b. 16 May 1759
d. 4 Apr. 1808
Johannes GRA▄
b. b. ca. 1722
d. 13 Nov. 1776
(prob. Conrad GRA▄)
(d. 22 Dec. 1732)
m.
(Anna Maria)
(b. ca. 1689)
(d. 14 Jul. 1758)
m. 28 Feb. 1757
Margaretha PFINGSTAGIN
b. 2 Mar. 1731
d. 15 Dec. 1787
Hans Georg PFINGSTAG
b. ca. 1699
d. 1 Jan. 1752
m. 18 Sep. 1725
Anna Maria MÍSSNERIN
b. ca. 1701
d. 4 Dec. 1764


Adam and Salome GRAU in America:

Early records of the family in America are few and far between. Adam was already in Pittsburgh in 1830, when he appears in the 1st of Pittsburgh. As already mentioned, Adam GRA▄ declared his intent to be naturalized on 30 Dec. 1836, swearing to "renounce and abjure forever all allegiance and fidelity to the Government of Germany." He signed this document "Adam GraŘ", demonstrating that he was at least minimally literate, but the scribe completing the form calls him "Gray". There is no evidence that Adam ever completed the process, even though he clearly lived ling enough to do so.

In 1840, Adam was in the West Ward of Pittsburgh, with a son aged 15-20, and three infant daughters. Adam appears to have still been living in 1848, when he is in the Pittsburgh City Directory, but this may have been his osn of the same name. By 1850, he was dead. In that year his widow and her family appear in Pittsburgh's Seventh Ward:

p.469
Hs
#
Fam
#
Name
A
g
e
OccupationBirth
25792623Adam Gray25 Germany
  Sarah19 Pa
  Charlotte2/12 Pa
  Sarah Crouse57LocksmithGermany
  Mary7 Pa
  Eliza13 "
  Susan11 "
  John9 "


There are two things worth noting in this record. The first is that Adam's widow is named as Sarah. While one might think this an error for the less common Salome, it is used consistently, so an error is unlikely. Likewise, one could suggest that this census entry represents a different family, but the names match some of those assigned as children of Adam and Salome. This could be a second wife of Adam, but she appears as Salome much later. Since in 1860 Sarah is of the same age and has the same birthplace as Salome, it is likely that Adam's wife had the full name of Salome Sarah (or Sarah Salome).

Sarah, widow of Adam Grau appears in the 1858 City Directory, and is next found in the 1860 census, again in the Seventh Ward, living in the House adjacent to her daughter Elizabeth (Grau) Hageman:

p.328
Hs
#
Fam
#
Name
A
g
e
Occupation  Birth
418503Sarah Gray59 86075Baden
  Sarah Gray36   Penna


"Sarah" has not yet been found in the 1870 census, but she was still alive 13 Dec. 1872, when she wrote her will, leaving her property to her daughters Susan M. and Mary, as well as son John C. She died shortly thereafter, for the will was filed 15 Jan. 1873.


Children of Adam GRAU:

The list of children of Adam Grau comes from two partial listings supplied by a descendant, since deceased. It is certainly both confused and incomplete, and it is impossible to rectify the errors without additional information.

(Ispringen Records)
i. Wilhelm Peter, b. 12 Nov. 1821, Ispringen
ii. Catherina, b. 13 Nov. 1825, Ispringen

(Census and Will)
iii. Sarah, b. ca. 1824, Pennsylvania, unmarried and with her mother in 1860.
iv. Adam, b. ca. 1825, Germany, married Sarah, b. ca. 1831, Pa., and had at least one daughter, Charlotte.
v. Elizabeth, b. 1837, Pa. m. William HAGEMAN
vi. Susan M., b. 1839, Pa. vii. John C., b. 1841, Pa., probably father of the grandchildren, below
viiia. Mary, (? b. 1843, Pa) m. George FLADING, a Civil War veteran from New Orleans. The funeral of her sister Elizabeth (Grau) Hageman was held in her house, and as Mrs. Flading, she is named in the account of that estate. They had a daughter Savilla, m. Michael O'CONNORS.
viiib. Mary, (? b. 1843, Pa) m. WARD (there are two Marys in traditional list, and it is uncertain if the two represent the same woman, who married twice, or two separate individuals. If the latter, then it is uncertain which was the Mary b. 1843.

(Only in Traditional List)
ix. Emma, m. HICKMAN.
x. dau., m. JUERGAN (it is possible that this is identical to Catherina, above).
xi. Dade, (no details, perhaps a flawed memory of Adam, but elsewhere called granddaughter)
xii. Myrtle, m. WHITE, but she is elsewhere called granddaughter.

Grandchildren (probably children of John):
i. Myrtle, m. WHITE (but see above)
ii. Dade (but see above)
iii. dau. m. STAUNTON
iv. son, father of Raymond and Margaret GRAY