Shumaker Family


The representatives of the Shumaker family are among the most respected residents of that section of Armstrong county comprising Mahoning township and the neighboring territory, where they have been settled for a century. These Shumakers are descendants of John Shumaker, a native of Germany, who came to America some time before the Revolution with six brothers, Solomon, Adam, George, Simon, Samuel, and Daniel. George was the founder of another well-known branch of the family in western Pennsylvania. They settled first in Loudoun county, Va., whence John Shumaker came to Westmoreland county, Pa., in 1770. He purchased and cleared a large tract of land in Franklin township, making a permanent home on that place, where he died. He was a soldier in the war of the Revolution, in the American army, and also served during the Indian troubles in western Pennsylvania. His death was caused by injuries he had received during his army service. His wife was Mary Ann Baker, and they had two sons and three daughters, the sons being Philip and John.

Philip Shumaker, son of John and Mary Ann (Baker) Shumaker, was born Jan. 25, 1784, in Westmoreland county, Pa., and died April 10, 1860. In 1814 he settled in what is now Mahoning township, Armstrong county (his brother John coming later), taking up 400 acres of land near Oakland, 200 acres of which he sold in 1824 to a favorite cousin, Peter Shumaker. He cleared and improved the 200 acres he retained, making a fine homestead, upon which he spent the remainder of his life, his death occurring there. He married Elizabeth Rose, who was born Nov. 18, 1790, and survived him, dying June 12, 1863. George Rose, her father, was born near Murrysville, Westmoreland Co., Pa., and was a farmer and hotel-keeper. Nine children were born to Mr. and Mrs. Shumaker, as follows: Mary, born April 14, 1812, married Adam Smith, and died in 1887; John was born Oct. 22, 1813; Sarah, born Jan. 5, 1815, died young; Joseph, born April 9, 1819, was a minister of the German Baptist Church; Isaac was born July 27, 1821; Philip was born March 2, 1825; Susanna, born July 20, 1827; married Robert Ferguson; Elizabeth, born May 17, 1831, married M. N. Hetrick; Samuel, was born March 12, 1834. The father was a Whig in politics until 1856, when he joined the Republican party. He was a member of the German Baptist Church.

Philip Shumaker, son of Philip and Elizabeth (Rose) Shumaker, was born March 2, 1825, in what is now Mahoning township, and was reared on his father�s farm. He obtained his education in the subscription schools of the day, and then engaged in farming, to which he devoted himself throughout his active years except for a few years during which he operated a sawmill. In 1851 he purchased the farm of 200 acres on which he established his home (this property is now owned by the Shawmut Coal Company), and together with the land given him by his father he had 265 acres, all of which he cultivated. The land is underlaid with several workable veins of good coal. He was one of the most prosperous farmers of his time in the locality, and accumulated a fine estate, leaving each of his children a good farm. He died in 1904, at the age of seventy-nine years. Mr. Shumaker was a Republican, took some interest in the welfare of the party and was active in local affairs, serving his township as overseer of the poor. He and his family belonged to the German Baptist Church, of which he was deacon.

Mr. Shumaker married Lavina Schaffner, a daughter of Henry Schaffner, a native of Switzerland, who came with his father to Lycoming county, Pa., when thirteen years old, afterward removing to Clarion county, and then to Jefferson county, where he died. Mr. and Mrs. Shumaker had ten children, eight sons and two daughters: Jeremiah, born Nov. 5, 1852, who was farming in Illinois at the time of his death; Margaret, born Jan. 16, 1854, who married Samuel Lankerd, a farmer, of Red Bank township, Armstrong county; Ross, born Aug. 20, 1855, a farmer of Mahoning township, who married Lottie Mowry; Monroe M., born April 9, 1859, who married Jane Prosious; Mary E., wife of Christopher B. Kimmel, a farmer of Armstrong County; Anderson, born Jan. 19, 1861, deceased; Ezra Z., born Feb. 20, 1863; Murray E., born June 10, 1865; Isaiah, born April 22, 1867, deceased, and Adam C., born April 30, 1868.

Ezra Z. Shumaker, son of Philip and Lavina (Schaffner) Shumaker, was born Feb. 20, 1863, in Mahoning township, where he has always resided, being now a well-to-do farmer of his district. He was reared on his father�s homestead farm and received his education in the common schools of the locality. Farming has been his life work, and in 1910 he purchased the place of sixty acres upon which he now has his home. He has been a useful citizen, associated with the best interests of his community and active in township affairs, having served efficiently as supervisor and school director, two terms in each office. In politics he is a Republican, in religion a Baptist, belonging to the German Baptist Church at Red Bank.

Mr. Shumaker has been twice married. His first wife, Mary (Myers), of Westmoreland county, died, and he was married to Ola Brocious, daughter of Levi and Catherine (Shick) Brocious, of Ringgold township, Jefferson Co., Pa. To the second marriage have been born three sons: Roy M., Arthur D. and Carl O.

Murray E. Shumaker, son of Philip and Lavina (Schaffner) Shumaker, was born June 10, 1865, in Mahoning township, and was reared and educated there, passing his early life on the paternal homestead, the property now owned by the Shawmut Coal Company. After attending the common schools he began work at farming, which occupation he has always followed. His present farm, a tract of fifty-seven acres in up-to-date condition, he purchased in 1910, and even during the brief period of his ownership has made many improvements on the place in the way of buildings, cement walks, etc., the appearance of the property showing his interest and careful management. He is well known and respected in the locality, has served his fellow citizens as township clerk and school director, doing his duty in the most public-spirited and faithful manner. In politics he is a Republican. He is an earnest member of the German Baptist Church, and holds the office of deacon.

On Oct. 10, 1891, Mr. Shumaker married Mary Peters, daughter of Jacob and Jane (Crawford) Peters, of Kittanning, Armstrong county, and they have a family of five children: Reed P., Paul, Harold, Ethel and Lillian.

Adam C. Shumaker, son of Philip and Lavina (Schaffner) Shumaker, was born in Mahoning township, April 30, 1868; and has lived there all his life. He was given a common school education, attending in the home district, and was brought up to farming on his father�s place and under his direction. In 1890 he bought the property of sixty-five acres upon which he has since made his home, and all the improvements in the line of buildings thereon have been made by him. The place is a credit to his industry and good judgment, and is under profitable cultivation, Mr. Shumaker being a typical member of the thrifty family to which he belongs. Like his brothers he has taken an active part in public affairs, having served as school director and clerk of his township, and he has shown himself to be a capable business man in everything he has undertaken.

On Oct. 31, 1891, Mr. Shumaker married Elizabeth Ankeney (her mother�s name was also Elizabeth), of Plum Creek township, Armstrong county; her father entered the Union army during the Civil war, and died of typhoid fever while in the service. Three children, William Blair, Howard F. and Mabel Grace, have been born to Mr. and Mrs. Shumaker. Both are members of the Church of the Brethren at Oakland. In politics Mr. Shumaker is a Republican.

Source: Pages 920-921, Armstrong County, Pa., Her People, Past and Present, J.H. Beers & Co., 1914
Transcribed October 1998 by Jeffrey Bish for the Armstrong County Beers Project
Contributed for use by the Armstrong County Genealogy Project (

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