ZA. Johann Christof GERBER (1750-1815 )


ZA. Johann Christof Gerber arrived at Philadelphia on Oct 15, 1805 on the ship Liberty with 162 passengers, which left Amsterdam on Aug 4, 1805; the listing includes Mr. and Mrs. Gerber, 3 children over age 14 and 3 children under age 14, with baggage of "two chests - wearing apparel and tools." Johann Christoph Gerber (b. 29 Nov. 1750, Langendembach, Sachsen, Saxony, Germany ; d. ca. Jan. 1815) m. Elisabeth Madoeri (b. 26 Aug. 1753, Zunssen or Zunsgen in the Canton of Basel-Land, Switzerland; d. by June 1818); they were married Oct. 17, 1775 in Zunssen, the records showing some controversy over the marriage. But Johann was ultimately offered citizenship, "because he could be useful, being a clever carpenter." Their family was listed on May 3, 1804 when they left Zunssen for Amsterdam and were each given a traveler's Baptismal Certificate. On Oct. 17, 1806 the following notice was published in the Lancaster Journal: "Ten dollars reward will be given for each of the following persons if taken up and secured. They made their escape from on board the ship Liberty, of Philadelphia, in November 1805 without paying their freight - Elisabeth Gerber, born in Zunssen in the Canton of Basel Switzerland, 53 years of age, she is the wife of Christopher Gerber, a carpenter by trade; Christopher Gerber, a son of the above, aged 24 years, likewise a carpenter; Jacob Gerber, second son of the above, aged 20 years, likewise a carpenter; and Anna Gerber, daughter of the above; aged 22 years;... Information to be given to G.W. Steinhauer, no. 10, at the corner of Winestreet, Philadelphia."

By 1811, the family had settled in Dover Twp., York County near a Joseph Gerber [?AC3b] from Lancaster County, who also purchased land on the west side of the Susquehanna River [this tract was adjacent to that of AC2 Samuel Garber]. Family legend says that the Gerbers introduced the Swiss bank-barn into the USA and one of the sons or grandsons continued to build them in the midwest.

ZA1+ Johannes Gerber (29 Dec. 1776 - 12 Feb. 1862, York Co.) m. Anna Spitteler (2 June 1783 - 21 Dec. 1855). The eldest son Johannes remained in Switzerland and emigrated later in 1817, while two of his sons were possibly indentured to pay passage, according to family tradition.

ZA2 Christoph Gerber (28 Dec. 1778 - 26 July 1779)

ZA3+ Christoph Gerber (4 July 1780 - 2 July 1862) m. Elizabeth Speck (22 Apr. 1793 - 21 Sept. 1857). He had 7 sons and 7 daughters, according to Geo. Prowell in History of York County, Pa. (1907). Prowell also reports that "he was a skilled carpenter, and was the first to introduce Swiss barns in this part of the country.. he died at Davidsburg, and was buried in the old Strayer cemetery in Dover Twp."

ZA4+ Anna Gerber (3 Dec. 1782 - ) m. Johann Jacob Mundweiler (23 Feb. 1778 - 3 Dec. 1869)

ZA5+ Hans Jakob Gerber (20 Mar. 1785 - About 1841) m. Elizabeth ?. Hans Jacob Gerber (b. ca. 1785) was administrator of his father's estate along with brother Christopher and John Kneisseley on Feb. 8, 1815 bond.

ZA6 Elisabeth Gerber (18 Oct. 1786 - 23 Apr. 1805). Elisabeth died in April 1805, after the family left Switzerland but before they sailed from Amsterdam for America. (Note: Her death may be the reason the family paid passage for only half the members when they arrived. Why? What happened? My guess is that Elisabeth became ill soon after the family started their journey. They stopped somewhere to care for her. She remained sick for quite a while before she died. After her death, the family resumed their journey, but with their assets considerably reduced. Thus they were unable to pay passage on all of the family when they arrived in Philadelphia. I can not prove this yet, but this is the image that I get. WEG, 7/11/98)

ZA7 Adam Gerber (19 Sept. 1789 - 27 Feb. 1790)

ZA8+ Matthias Gerber* (3 Jan. 1791 - 6 Feb. 1862) m.(1) Elizabeth (?), 4 ch.; m.(2) Martha ? (1793 - 24 Feb. 1827).

ZA9+ Anna Maria Gerber (13 Oct. 1793 - 31 Jan. 1867) m. Daniel March (7 Aug. 1783 - 17 Mar. 1861)

ZAa Salome Gerber (13 Mar. 1797 - )

The ZA family information is from an Aug. 14, 1993 letter of Bill Gerber, 16 Princess Ave., N. Chelmsford, MA 01863, with a 4-p attachment "Descriptive Chronology of the Johann Christof Gerber and Elisabeth Madori Family." Information on ancestry to 1565 is available from David K. Gerber, son of Harry and Barbara (Knight) Gerber, obtained July 1984 from the Taufbuch (baptism record) and Ehebuch (marriage record) of the community of Sissach, stored in the cantonal archives in Basel Landshaft, town of Liestal, Switzerland. Additional information was provided by Th. V. Lerber, Ing., of Kramgasse 61, Bern, a researcher hired by W.E.Gerber, Sr. This information was further expanded by David K. Gerber and William E. Gerber, Jr. in Johann Christof Gerber, Journeyman, Saxony - Switzerland - Pennsylvania, in German Genealogical Digest (Winter 1994). See also notes from the author's Jan. 11, 1997 conversation with Kyle Converse, of Fremont, Michigan, (616) 924-0142. The outline below was provided by Bill Gerber in e-mail dated July 29, 1997.

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