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THE BROBST CHRONICLES
A HISTORY OF THE EARLY BROBST/PROBST FAMILIES IN PENNSYLVANIA
July 1, 1999
William A. Brobst
Brobst Family Historical Registry
6072 Currituck Road
Kitty Hawk, North Carolina
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
THE OTHER CHILDREN OF PHILIPP JACOB PROBST
2. (Jean) Valentine Probst
(Jean) Valentine was ten when he arrived in America in 1732. He had the
nickname of "Felder" or "Felty". His family history
is well documented; he married Catharina Levan of Maxatawney Township,
Berks County, in 1753. They had no children. She was of Dutch heritage,
the daughter of Jacob and Maria Levan.
He was naturalized on September 25, 1761, in Philadelphia, having walked
there and back (some 50 miles each way) with his brother (Jean) Michael
and their friend, "Jurg" Kistler. Valentine became quite wealthy
(another 'noted' Brobst ),and owned large tracts of land in Berks County,
as well as an interest in forges and furnaces there. He also owned a sawmill,
and he operated a tavern in the basement of his father's house in Fetherolffsville,
near Kempton; that house is now a residence and is described in Chapter
IV. During the French and Indian Wars, the Fort Henry brigade would spend
the nights in the tavern before heading up to Fort Everett in Lynnport.
The bar room was in the cellar, next to the fireplace that is still there
(Jean) Valentine's farmstead lay along the south side of what is now Kistler
Valley Road, between Kempton and Lynnville. He had also owned several
other plantations nearby. He is mentioned in several of the Pennsylvania
Archives in connection with his military activities in the French and
Indian Wars. His letter to his father-in-law, Jacob Levan, regarding an
Indian attack is quoted in Chapter III.
He died in 1775. In his will, he specifically singled out his niece,
Anna Catharina Probst who married Michael Stein, as being disinherited,
stating that she be excluded from his estate. The nature of that obviously
severe family "feud" is not known. Evidently, there was no bad
feeling between Anna Catharina and her mother, Anna Elizabeth (nee Hechler),
wife of (Jean) Valentine's brother (Jean) Martin, because in Anna Elizabeth's
will of 1772, she left more than half of her estate of Anna Catharina!
Perhaps (Jean) Valentine was angry at either Michael Stein or Anna Elizabeth!
Who knows? Perhaps he just knew that Anna Elizabeth (Hechler), who had
died several years earlier, had already taken care of Anna Catharina.
He left plantations to ("Crazy") Jacob F. Brobst, son of his
brother (Jean) Michael, and another to Johannes Fetherolff (which led
to the naming of that area "Fetherolffsville"). When his wife,
Catharina Levan, died in 1788, she left her estate to be divided into
five shares, and she mentioned five sisters-in-law: Catharina Dorothea
Federolff, Anna Maria Hechler, Eva Catharina Kuntz, Elizabeth Schneyder,
and Susanna Neuendorff; the latter two were actually her sisters.
There have been some claims that (Jean) Valentine and Catharina had children.
Three county histories (Berks, Lehigh, and Northumberland) state that
he had at least two (Martin and Valentine, and perhaps Christian); all
three used essentially the same description of his children, but those
reports all seem to be clearly in error, based on more recently discovered
information. Both Martin and Valentine are clearly from the families of
(Jean) Michael, (Jean) Valentine's brother. Several authorities, including
Hollenbach1, have asserted that there were none. (Jean)
Valentine's will mentions no children -- only his wife, his sister Dorothea,
and some nieces and nephews. It must be accepted that (Jean) Valentine
and Catharina (Levan) Probst had no children.
3. (Jean) Martin Probst
The immigrant (Jean) Martin Probst (1721) first married Maria Fuss, but
no children are known to have come of that marriage and it ended soon,
probably with Maria's death and perhaps in childbirth. He then married
Anna Elizabeth Hechler, a Berks County woman, in 1757. She was the daughter
of Christian Rudolph Hechler of Exeter Township.
Like his brothers, (Jean) Martin was a farmer and operator of two grist
mills and a sawmill in Albany Township. In 1748, he took the oath of allegiance
to Pennsylvania, and became naturalized in Philadelphia in 1762. He owned
land in Lynn Township, Northampton (now Lehigh) County, but lived in Albany
Township, Berks County, until his death. As in the case with his brothers,
his family language was German, not English. He used the name "Brobst",
rather than his family name "Probst".
(Jean) Martin's only son, Johannes (whom he referred to as "John"2
), was born in Albany Township in 1759; his sister, Anna Catharina, a
year earlier. There may have been a second daughter in 1762. They moved
briefly to Schuylkill County, but then Martin returned to Berks County
before he died in 1766 at the young age of 40. His Uncle (Jean) Valentine
was named guardian of his two young children. (Jean) Martin's wife, Anna
Elizabeth, always used the name "Probst" when referring to herself
or her children, even in her will shortly before she died3.
Both (Jean) Martin and Anna Elizabeth are surely buried somewhere in
Albany or Lynn Townships, but their graves have not been found.
John married Catharina Stump (Stumpfund), daughter of Wilhelm and Anna
Magdalena (Hagenbuch) Stumpfund. They had five children: Anna Maria, Johannes
Jacob, Susannah, Daniel, and Benjamin. He served four action tours in
the Revolutionary War, first with the Berks County Militia, and later
with the Continental Army. He fought first as a private soldier and a
scout, serving on and off, a couple months at a time, mostly in New Jersey
and in the Reading, Pennsylvania, area.
After the war of 1812 ended, he and his wife moved from Albany Township
to Union Township, Union (then Northumberland) County. Most of their children
moved with them, where they lived out their lives as farmers. He was later
granted a pension for his service, but died in March 1834, five months
after starting to collect his pension.
Their son, Johannes Jacob, married Catharina Klöse in 1802 and moved
to Snyder County, Pennsylvania. He served in the War of 1812.
Anna Catharina married Michael Stein; they were mentioned in the earlier
discussion of the will of her Uncle (Jean) Valentine, earlier in this
4, 5. Anna Maria Probst
Philipp Jacob's and C'erine's first daughter was Anne Marie Probst who
was born in Oberseebach, Alsace, France, in 1731, and apparently died
as an infant, either before the Probsts left for America, or on the ship
en route to Philadelphia in 1732. One record states she died in Alsace,
and gives the death date as Mar 8 1731. As was the custom when a child
died as an infant, the next child of the same gender was given the same
name, and Anna Maria Probst was born in Berks County in 1737. She married
her brother-in-law Christian "CH" Hechler, a brother of (Jean)
Martin's wife, Anna Elizabeth Hechler. They had one daughter, Anna Elizabeth,
named after her husband's mother.
6. Eva Catharina Probst
The third daughter of Philip Jacob and C'erine, Eva Catharina, was born
in 1740 in Berks County. She married Johann Nicholas Kutz, Jr. about 1759.
They had seven children: Elizabeth, Johann Nicholas III, Maria Dorothea,
Susanna Margaretha, Maria Margaretha, Johannes, and Anna Rosina. Johann
Nicholas Kutz, Sr., died in 1990 of wounds received in the Revolutionary
War. She later married Daniel Jacob Stambach.
7. Catharina Dorothea Probst
Catharina Dorothea, the fourth daughter of Philipp Jacob and C'erine,
was born in 1744, and married Jacob Fetherolff, son of Peter and Anna
Maria (nee Rothermal) Fetherolff. They had eight children: Magdalena,
Peter, Philip, Salome, Johannes, Molly, Catharina, and Anna Maria. Anna
Maria married Abraham Long, and they were the parents of the Abraham Long
who married Catherine Brobst and later operated the Brobst Grist Mill
on Pine Creek. Molly and Catharina married brothers, Peter and John Siegfried.
(Note: Very little is currently shown in the Brobst records of the
descendants of these three daughters.)
[Back to the Top]
1. Hollenbach, "BROBST FAMILY of Pennsylvania"
2. Last Will and Testament of Jean Martin Probst, Albany
Township, Berks County, executed October 10, 1765, probated June 9, 1766.
Written in German script. See: History of Berks County, 1909, Vol. 1,
page 454. ***
3. Last Will and Testament of Anna Elizabeth Hechler
Probst, Albany Township, Berks County, executed October 6, 1772 ***
This page was last updated on Monday, 21-Feb-2011 18:23:45 MST
Copyright© 1998-2011 by The National Brobst Family Historical Registry