David H Wolff


DAVID H. WOLFF, one of the leading farmers of East Franklin township, Armstrong county, lives on the old Hooks farm, where Mrs. Wolff�s parents made their home for sixty years. He was born Oct. 18, 1867, in Washington township, this county, son of Valentine Wolff, and is of German extraction, his great-great-grandparents being obliged to leave Germany because they were found to have a Bible in their possession.

Jacob Wolff, great-grandfather of David H. Wolff, was born in Bedford county, Pa. He had a large family, ten sons and one daughter, of whom John, David and George settled in Sugar Creek township, Armstrong county; Mathias, Isaac and Joseph settled with their father in Plum Creek township, where Jacob, Sr., died, and Solomon and Jacob settled in Kittanning township. The daughter, Christina, married Jacob Williams, of Armstrong county.

John Wolff, son of Jacob, was born in Bedford county, and eventually settled in Armstrong county, Pa. He married Margaret Sandle, of Westmoreland county, and their children were: Michael, Mathias, Eva, Christina, Jacob, John, Valentine, George, Diana and Margaret.

Valentine Wolff, son of John, was born in Sugar Creek township, Armstrong county, and grew up in Washington township, there receiving his education in the common schools. For ten years he taught music. In early manhood he went to Venango county, Pa., and worked in the timber and the oil field on Oil Creek, in the fifties. But after his marriage, in the year 1856, he settled in Washington township, Armstrong county, and began farming on the old homestead, where he remained until his death. In 1856 he married Catherine Croyle, of Brady�s Bend, this county, daughter of Joseph and Nancy (Meanor) Croyle, who moved from Bedford county to Armstrong county, settling at Brady�s Bend. Mr. Croyle was a puddler by occupation. He was a son of David Croyle, and his wife was a daughter of Samuel Meanor; the mother�s maiden name was Hamilton. Joseph and Nancy Croyle had six children, namely: Samuel, deceased, who was a sergeant in the 78th Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry during the Civil war; David, a carpenter, now deceased, who was engaged on the Allegheny Valley railroad; Catherine, who is living on the old place in Washington township; Christina, now deceased, of New Kensington, Pa.; Joseph, deceased, who was a bridge contractor; and Mary, of Washington township. For his second wife Joseph Croyle married Catherine Crisman, by whom he had the following children: John, of Templeton, Pa.; Adam, also of Templeton; Sarah Ellen, deceased; and Henry, a carpenter of Washington township.

Valentine Wolff died July 18, 1908, aged seventy-nine years, at his old home in Washington township, where his widow still resides. They were the parents of eleven children, of whom we have the following record: (1) John A., a contractor and builder, at Homestead, Pa., married Jennie Barnhart, and their children are Annie, Loretta Jean and Fred. (2) Rosanna married Ernest Pattrell, of Bartlesville, Okla., and has one child, Mamie, who married John Caswell, of Buffalo, N.Y. (3) Samuel H., who lives in Allegheny county, Pa., married Flora Walton and has one son, Raymond. (4) Christine is deceased. (5) David H. is mentioned below. (6) Margaret E. is married to Dwight Wolffe, a teacher, and their children are Warren, Wade, Catharine and Blaine. (7) Wilbur V., contractor and builder, of Homestead, Pa., married Mary Chandler, and their children are George, Ethel, Florence, Wilbur and Wilma, twins, Stella and Ida. (8) Joseph O., a carpenter, who lives in Washington township, this county, married Lillie Lasher, and has children, Freda, Margaret, Maburn, Victor and Joseph. (9) Nancy A. married John Crissman and has one son, Edward. They are living on the old homestead. (10) George E., a telegraph operator, at Kittanning, Pa., married Mabel Mateer and lives in the old Mateer homstead at Mosgrove, Pa. (11) James B., a carpenter by trade, married Bertha Groves, and is at Homestead.

David H. Wolff received his education in the schools of the home neighborhood. When a young man of twenty he left home and went to work in the Lake Erie car shops at McKees Locks, where he remained for a year and a half. He then took up the trade of bridge builder, which he learned with his uncle, Joseph Croyle, being with him about five years. He became foreman of a bridge gang, being thus engaged for three years, and later worked about one year for the Baltimore & Ohio Railway Company, after which he entered the Fort Wayne car shops, at Allegheny City, Pa., where he was employed for a period of ten years, as carpenter and car builder. In 1899 he came to live in Washington township, Armstrong county, where he remained four years, at the end of that time buying the Solomon Hooks homestead, in East Franklin township, upon which he has since resided. He has made many improvements upon this old place since it came into his possession. It comprises 140 acres of valuable land, 100 acres being under cultivation, and in connection with general farming Mr. Wolff raises considerable fruit, apples, peaches, pears, cherries and other small fruit. He has fine dairy stock and draft horses, and in all his work follows the most approved modern ideas and methods, which he has found profitable and well worth while. He has also dealt in timber to a considerable extent, and has done well in all his ventures, being an energetic manager and showing excellent judgement in whatever he undertakes.

Though busy with his own affairs, Mr. Wolff has found time to take an interest in public matters, has been quite active in local politics as a member of the Republican party, and has been chosen to fill several offices, the duties of which he has discharged faithfully and capably. He and his wife have been active members of St. Mark�s Evangelical Lutheran Church, and he has been a leading worker in the church and Sunday school. He belongs to the I.O.O.F. lodge at Middlesex, and to the Daughters of Liberty, and is very well known over a wide territory in connection with his various activities.

On Sept. 20, 1894, Mr. Wolff married Ida F. Hooks, a native of East Franklin township, born March 27, 1870, daughter of Solomon and Susanna (Crisman) Hooks, formerly from Cambridge, Ohio, natives of Pennsylvania who settled at the place in East Franklin township, Armstrong Co., Pa., now occupied by Mr. and Mrs. Wolff, living there for sixty years. They both died on this place, Solomon Hooks Dec. 15, 1900, his wife, April 28, 1901. Mr. Hooks was a well-known and respected citizen of this section. They had a family of thirteen children, ten of whom became school teachers. Of these, William H., now a farmer and market gardener of Madison township, married Mary Wolff and had children, Ernest, Boyd, Maude, Hoyt and Mabel; C.C. lives in Endicott, Wash.; John Y., who is engaged in farming and the stone business in East Franklin township, married Lizzie Ritchie, and their children are Bessie, Ralph, Edgar, Eva, Chauncey D., Sharn and Henry (twins), Raymond and Anna Bell (twins), and Mary; S.Q., who is in business as a merchant at Gilmore, Effingham Co., Ill., married Rilla Stewart, by whom he had two children, Carl and Roy, and his second wife is Lizzie Smith, by whom he has one son, Glen; Eliza is deceased; Maggie is deceased; Jacob E., deceased, who was a teacher, married Priscilla Regard, and they had children, Erwin, Finley, Charles, Loyd, Jacob and Hannah (twins), Fannie, Ray and Roy (twins); Laura married Amos A. Bowser, of West Franklin township, and their children are Wilbur, Ruth, Rhoda, Louis, Sharn, Galan and Emerson; Ida is the wife of David H. Wolff; Mary married Henry Bowser, of Henderson, W. Va., and they have one son, Elmer H.; Rebecca married Guy C. Lasher, of East Franklin township, and their children are Ida, Frank, Dorothy, Glen, Perry, Merl and Ruby.

Mr. and Mrs. David H. Wolff have two children: Mead, born Oct. 26, 1901; and Helen, born April 25, 1904.

Source: Pages 954-956, Armstrong County, Pa., Her People, Past and Present, J.H. Beers & Co., 1914
Transcribed December 1998 by Kathy Zagorac for the Armstrong County Beers Project
Contributed for use by the Armstrong County Genealogy Project (http://www.pa-roots.com/armstrong/)

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