Biographies from Historical and Biographical Annals by Morton Montgomery


p. 1664


Amandus E. Henry was born June 11, 1869, in West Penn township, Schuylkill county, son of Adam and Katie (Hoppes) Henry, and grandson of Philip Henry.

Adam Henry, the father, was born in 1850 in Carbon county. He removed to Schuylkill county and spent some years there, subsequently returning to Carbon county where the remainder of his life was spent. He followed the trade of a butcher and he died in 1882. He was buried at the Mahanoy Church, in West Penn township, Schuylkill county, He married Katie Hoppes, who survives him and makes her home with (her) son Michael. They had the following children: Amandus E.; Charles M.; Lizzie A., who is married and lives in Philadelphia; Emma, m. Robert Bell of Philadelphia; and Michael, who is a farmer in Carbon county.

Amandus E. Henry was reared to farming, and until his twenty-fourth year hired out among the farmers of his district, but after his marriage he entered his father-in-law's employ as foreman and boss for a period of ten years. He then removed to his father-in-law's farm in Spring township. Mr. Henry is an excellent farmer, and to this fact the condition of his farm amply testifies. He does considerable dairying and ships his milk to the creamery at Sinking Spring. In his political belief Mr. Henry is a Democrat. He and his family worship at the Lutheran Church. In 1893 Mr. Henry married Miss Clara K. Bittner, daughter of Daniel F. Bittner, who is mentioned elsewhere in this publication, and four children have been born to this union: Leon D., Helen S., Blanche E. and Raymond E.


p. 829


Cyrus G. Henry, who for several years has been engaged as superintendent of No. 2 and No. 3 Furnaces of the E. & G. Brooke Iron Company, is one of the respected citizens of the borough of Birdsboro, where he has lived since boyhood. He was born in 1870 in Richmond township, Berks county, son of James and Louisa (Gauby), Henry, being the eldest of their family of four children.

His father is a miller by trade, and followed that occupation until he took a position with the E. & G. Brooke Company. Cyrus G. Henry attended the schools of Birdsboro, where he was reared, and commenced work as a farm hard. Later he was employed for four years or more as clerk in a general store in Birdsboro, and he has since been with his present employers, in 1895 engaging as bookkeeper with the E. & G. Brooke Company, in the furnace department, and in 1900 he was promoted to his present capacity, in which he has charge of Furnaces No. 2 and No. 3, belonging to the E. & G. Brooke Iron Company. He is progressive and capable, and has proved himself worthy the confidence of his superiors and amply qualified for the duties of his position. Mr. Henry married Miss Minnie Follweiler, a native of Tamaqua, and they make their home on Mill street, in Birdsboro. Mr. Henry is a prominent member of St. Michael's Episcopal Church, of which he has been organist for the past ten years. In fraternal connection he is an Odd Fellow, belonging to Neversink Lodge, No. 514, of Birdsboro, and he is a member of the Birdsboro Fire Company.


p. 492


Rev. Jonas O. Henry, pastor of the Topton Lutheran parish, is the great-grandson of John Adam Henry, who came to America from Germany and settled near Wanamakers, in Lynn township, Lehigh Co., Pa., and later resided on a farm about one-half mile south of Lynnport, Lehigh county. He was a farmer by occupation.

Joseph Henry, son of John Adam, was born on the family homestead in Lehigh county, Dec. 14, 1810. His home was near Lynnport, Lynn township, Lehigh county, where he died July 5, 1871, and was buried at Jacksonville, Pa. He married Miss Judith Kistler, who was born April 14, 1806, and who died May 24, 1879, and was interred in Jacksonville. They were blessed with eight children, five sons and three daughters, as follows: Daniel K.; Moses m. Sabina Long; Jacob m. Rebecca Koenig; Benjamin m. Sarah Greenawalt; Charles m. Sarah Schlenker; Katherine m. Elias Wagamann; Florence m. Reuben Ebert; and Angelina m. Elias Dengler.

Daniel K. Henry, son of Joseph, was born Feb. 18, 1836, in Lynn township, near Lynnport. He followed an agricultural life in what is known as Kistler's Valley. He died April 5, 1901, and was laid to rest at New Jerusalem Church in Albany township, Berks county. He married Miss Sarah Wagamann, born Dec. 7, 1836, in Weisenburg township, Lehigh county, died April 12, 1881; she was laid to rest at New Jerusalem Church. This marriage was blessed with nine children, five sons and four daughters, namely: Harrison, a farmer near Jacksonville, m. Delia Snyder; Joseph, a carpenter at Kutztown, m. Rosa Hollenbach; George, a farmer at Rising Sun, m. Missouri Kemmerer; Rev. Jonas O., of Longswamp township; Rosa m. Lewis Snyder, of New Tripoli, Pa.; Cordelia m. Wilson Snyder, of Pleasant Corner, Pa.; Sarah Jane m. Amandus C. Oswald, of Rising Sun, Pa.; and Lizzie M. m. William Sechler, of Hynemansville, Pennsylvania. Jonas O.

Henry was born March 2, 1874, at Stein's Corner, Lehigh Co., Pa., and was reared on the home farm and received his early education in the local schools. For three years he taught school and later entered Muhlenberg College where he was graduated in June, 1899. He completed his course in theology in the seminary three years later, and on May 26, 1902, he was ordained a minister of the Lutheran faith in St. John's Church at Easton, Pa. On the last Sunday in November of the same year he was installed by Rev. G. F. Speiker, D. D., and Rev. H. S. Fegley, as pastor of the Topton Lutheran parish, consisting of St. Peter's, Topton, St. Paul's, Fleetwood and Christ (of Rockland township) Churches to which charge he has faithfully ministered ever since.

On May 21, 1903, the Rev. Mr. Henry married Miss Ida L. Sefing, daughter of Leonard Sefing, son of Herman and Anna Margaret (Conrad) Sefing, of Allentown, Pa. Her people came from Hessen, Germany, in 1854. The Rev. Mr. Henry and wife have three children: Karl Sefing, born June 4, 1905; Paul Jonas, born Oct. 17, 1906; and Leonard Daniel, born June 21, 1908. The family resides at Topton, Berks Co., Pennsylvania.


p. 1517


Lewis R. Henry, one of Berks county1s good practical farmers, whose fine tract of land is situated along the electric railroad in Robeson township, was born Sept. 9, 1855, in Albany township, Berks county, son of John and Lydia (Rheinhardt) Henry.

Adam Henry, grandfather of Lewis R., was a native of Lehigh county, Pa., and owned a farm near Steinsville, where he died. He married and became the father of John, the father of Lewis R.; Levi; Elizabeth, who married a Mr. Hottenstein; and Sarah, who married George Peifley. In religious connection the family were members of the Lutheran Church. Mr. Henry was a Democrat in politics. John Henry was also born in Lehigh county, but early in life removed to Albany township, Berks county, and there purchased a farm. Later he bought the old homestead in Lehigh county, to which he returned, and there his death occurred in 1905, in his eighty-first year, his widow still surviving and living in Lehigh county. They had children as follows: Daniel; Lewis R,; Jonathan; Levi; Wilson; Mary, who married Peter Weasner; Sarah, who married Erastus Gehris; Lydia, who married George Dries; Amanda, who married Charles Deeter; and Amelia, who married James Leipelsberger. Mr. Henry was a member of the Lutheran Church in which he held the office of deacon. He was a stanch Democrat and for many years was township supervisor.

Lewis R. Henry was educated in the common schools of Albany township, and was reared on his father's farm until about seventeen years of age. At the age of twenty-two he engaged in the hotel business at Drehersville, Schuylkill county, but one year later removed to Schuylkill Haven, where he continued in the same line as proprietor of the "Swan Hotel." After four years at that place Mr. Henry sold out and removed to Port Clinton, being proprietor of the "Central House" for two years, when he again sold out and went to Auburn, where he conducted the "St., Elmo Hotel" for five years. In 1891 Mr. Henry sold this property and removed to Birdsboro, where he conducted the "Mansion House" until 1905, and in April, 1906, he located on his present property, a fine farm of fifty acres, situated about two miles from Birdsboro and seven miles from Reading. This property, which is well supplied with water, is one of the most fertile in the township, and yields large crops of fruit.

In 1878 Mr. Henry married Ellawine Leiby, daughter of Jacob Leiby, of Lehigh county, and eight children were born to this union: Effie L., m. Howard Deem, has two sons, Gerhardt and Harry; Mary Etta m. Daniel Hahn, has one son, Harold; Estella m. John Rhoads; Curtis L. m. Florence Hohl; Alberta L.; Welman L., and Ellawine R., and Warren W., who died at the age of ten years. The latter was a bright and studious little fellow who made friends with all about him, and his death was a great blow to his parents.

Mr. Henry is member of the Fraternal Order of Eagles. The family are members of the Lutheran Church. In politics Mr. Henry is a Republican, and while in Schuylkill county held the office of councilman.


p. 1338


Prof. Samuel I. Henry, Principal of Schools at Boyertown, was born there April 21, 1872, a member of an early-settled family.

Jonathan Henry, great-grandfather of Prof. Samuel I., lived in Marlboro township, Bucks county, where he was engaged as a rakemaker and farmer, owning a large farm. He and his wife are buried at the Six Corner Church. They had children: Daniel, who lived at Marlboroville, Pa.; Jonathan; and Mrs. Frederick Pflueger. Jonathan Henry, son of Jonathan, was born on his father1s farm about 1823, and he died in 1859, and was buried at Six Corner Church, in Montgomery county. He was a hotel-keeper and drover, at Marlboroville, and he drove many herds of cattle from York State across the Blue Mountains to Berks county. He was the owner of about 180 acres of land, and figured prominently in his community. He married Lean Ann Samsen, daughter of Charles Samsen, and she died about twenty years ago and is buried at Six Corner Church. The children born of this marriage were Edwin, of Gilbertsville; Jacob; Elizabeth, who married Jonas Royer; Hannah, who married Daniel G. Dry, of Hudsonville, Ill.; and William S., born at Marlboroville Sept. 10, 1854, who married Sallie Emery (deceased) daughter of Peter Emery, and who is now a salesman at Boyertown. After the death of Mr. Henry, his widow, Leah Ann (Samsen) Henry, married Jonas Schweisford, and had two daughters, Sallie and Addie.

Jacob S. Henry, son of Jonathan, was born March 15, 1846, and he died May 14, 1904, and is buried in Fairview cemetery, Boyertown. He had lived in Boyertown the greater part of his life, being proprietor of the "Union House," for four years, from 1884, after which he retired for a few years, and then re-entered business life as a butcher, a business he followed until about two years before his death. He married Ann Catharine Houck, daughter of William and Hannah (Haas) Houck, of Lower Berks county. To this union were born the following children: Miss Clara, living at Boyertown; Prof. Samuel I.; Hannah, who married Dr. C. C. Stauffer of Harrisburg, Pa. Mrs. Ann Catharine (Houck) Henry was born Oct. 24, 1845, and her death occurred Feb. 14, 1892. She, too, was laid to rest in Fairview Cemetery.

Prof. Samuel I. Henry received his early education in the public schools at Boyertown. Later he attended in the public schools at Boyertown. Later he attended Herbst's Academy at Pottstown, Pa., and there prepared for college. In the fall of 1892 he entered Muhlenberg College, Allentown, and graduated with the class of 1896, being commencement orator, his subject, "Civic Negligence." He then taught school in Colebrookdale township, this county, one term, after which he was made principal of the school at Pioneer, Ohio. For one term he taught in the Boyertown Grammar School, and then, in 1900 was made principal of the high school, where he has since continued. Prof. Henry has made a number of improvements in the course of study, and is a member of the Advisory Committee of the County Institute. He is a member of the Berks County Reading Union, and has taken an active interest in its work. He is one of the popular and successful teachers in the county, and is devoted to his profession. He is a man of naturally literary tastes, and he has a well-selected library in which he finds his rest and recreation. Socially, Prof. Henry is connected with Stichter Lodge, No. 254, F. & A. M.; Joy Lodge, No. 406, I. O. O. F., of Pioneer, Ohio. He is member of St. John's Lutheran Church, at Boyertown. Since the death of his father, his sister, Miss Clara, has presided over his home.


p. 1440


Irvin E. Hepler, of Reading, Pa., who conducts a grocery at the corner of Pear and Walnut streets, was born May 20, 1870, at Hepler, Schuylkill county, son of John K. and Harriet (Keller) Hepler.

John K. Hepler was born in upper Mahantango township, Schuylkill county, Pa., and there received his education in the common schools. When a young man he engaged as a farm hand, and continued at that occupation until seventeen years of age, when he became clerk in a store. At the age of twenty-three years he engaged in a general merchandise business, continuing therein for two years, when he embarked in the cattle business, shipping from Chicago, and later from Buffalo. For four years he was extensively engaged in this line, and from that time on he was variously engaged. He died June 2, 1906, aged fifty-eight years, nine months.

Mr. Hepler was married in 1869 to a daughter of Peter Keller, and eight children were born to this union, as follows: Irvin E.; Laura, deceased; Curtin H.; Winfield, deceased; Charles H.; Katy May, deceased, Martha, and one who died in infancy. In religion Mr. Hepler was a member of the Reformed Church. He was a Democrat politically, and a member of the Order of American Mechanics.

Irvin E. Hepler was educated in the schools of Ashland, Pa., and when a boy was employed in the coal mines, being engaged ten years as a breaker. He was then employed in W. H. Bright's , lumber yard at Ashland for two years, when he went to Frackville and engaged with Seaman & Co., in a general store as clerk for eight years. In 1897 Mr. Hepler went to Ashland and engaged in the baking business, continuing therein for five and one-half years, and in 1903 removed to Reading, purchasing the D. K. Hoch store and stock at his present location. Mr. Helpler's business has been constantly on the increase. He carries a full line of meats and staple and fancy groceries, is agent for several leading bakeries and also engages in the buying and shipping of produce. He is possessed of much business ability, and has won the confidence and patronage of the community.

Mr. Hepler was married in 1895 to Bertha Beard of Frackville, and to this union there have been born five children: Blanch A., Marian E., Laura B., Ruth E. and Bertha E. In religious belief, Mr. Hepler is a member of the Reformed Church. Politically he is a Democrat.

Charles Beard, Mrs. Hepler1s father, was a native of Hamburg, Berks county, and a blacksmith by trade, and at the time of his death was living at Frackville, he married Emma Adams, also a native of Hamburg, and they became the parents of seven children: Elizabeth, who married Charles Maurer, has four children, Marian, Lillian, Walter and Douglas; Bertha, Mrs. Hepler; Lillian G.; Estella; Emma, who married Elwood Gunther, who was killed in a railroad accident June 1, 1906, leaving her with three children, Gladys, Allen and Dorothy; Laura, who married Samuel Wingert, has one child, Ruth; and Lydia. In religious belief the family are members of the Evangelical Church.


p. 766


John Coller Hepler, late a highly esteemed citizen of Reading, Pa., was superintendent of the Charles Evans cemetery from 1880 until his death, during which time he made this burial ground one of the most beautiful spots in Berks county. Mr. Hepler was born April 17, 1829, in Reading, son of John and Elizabeth (Coller) Hepler, and died Sept. 26, 1907. The ancestors of this family, who came from Wales, were among the early settlers of Philadelphia.

William Hepler, grandfather of John C., located there in 1793, where the remainder of his life was spent, and where, during the yellow fever epidemic, he was engaged in hauling the bodies of the victims to the place of interment. In religious matters he adhered to the faith of the Reformed congregation, and in politics he upheld the principles of the Whig party. His children were: John; Henry and George, who died single; Gideon, a cigar maker; and Elizabeth, m. to Dr. William Palm.

John Hepler, son of William, was born Dec. 26, 1800, in Philadelphia, and when fifteen years of age came to Reading and apprenticed himself to the house carpenter's trade for four years and six months. This occupation he followed all of his life and at the time of his death in Reading Dec. 22, 1862, he was a very prosperous man. He was a Republican in political matters, and until 1842 was a member of Trinity Lutheran Church, in this year becoming one of the organizers of St. Matthew's Lutheran Church.

Mr. Hepler m. Elizabeth Coller, daughter of John and Catharine (Bickley) Coller. To Mr. and Mrs. Hepler were born: William P., a soldier in the Mexican war, going out as a private in the Ringgold Battery, United States Regulars, and serving under Zachary Taylor until his death of a fever at Saltillo in 1847; John C.; and Henry A., and Catharine A., twins, the former of whom died in Reading in 1880, while the latter became the wife of Capt. Joseph G. Holmes and is now also deceased.

John C. Hepler's education was limited to a few months at a pay school during the winter term, and at the age of fourteen and one-half years he became an apprentice to the trade of a tailor under his uncle the late William I. Clous, serving in that capacity for five years. He then went to Philadelphia, where he worked for six months and learned cutting. Returning to Reading he entered the clothing and tailoring business for himself, and carried it on successfully until 1860, when failing health compelled him to give up this work. For some time he was employed on the Philadelphia & Reading railroad, and then he removed to a small farm in the Hockley Out lots, where he continued until 1880, when he was appointed superintendent of the Charles Evans Cemetery at Reading, taking up the duties of that office on April 1st of that year. This cemetery, which was incorporated in 1846, includes a tract of 118 acres, and under Mr. Hepler's careful management many improvements were made. He performed the duties of his position in a most efficient manner, and inaugurated a system of records for burials of persons who were not lot owners, which is one of the most complete in the United States, it recording as follows: The name, number of permit, date of burial, age of deceased, name of lot owner upon which deceased is buried, and number and section of cemetery in which such lot is located. In this Mr. Hepler was ably assisted by his son, John A., who has a thorough knowledge of all the records. During his administration nearly 16,000 bodies were interred in this cemetery.

Mr. Hepler also conducted a greenhouse on the corner of Schuylkill avenue and Greenwich street, which is in a prosperous condition. He was a director of the Mutual Fire Insurance Company, and held an official position in the "Home for Friendless Children."

On Sept. 18, 1854, Mr. Hepler was married to Hermelinda Abbott, daughter of William Abbott, a native of England who came to Reading in 1842, and who was a forty-niner of the gold fields of California. Mr. Abbott was a taxidermist, and was employed by the Smithsonian Institution to secure specimens. Mr. and Mrs. Hepler were the parents of these children, all of whom, together with the widowed mother, survive: Mary Meta, at home; George H., a mail carrier, who married Margaret S. Lease, of New Oxford, Pa.; and John A., who married Katharine E. Bean, of Spring City, Pa., and has two children, J. Merrill and Erme K.

In politics Mr. Hepler was a Republican, and represented the Seventh ward, now the Fourteenth, in the common council from 1882 to 1888. He was a life-long member of St. Matthew's Lutheran Church, taking an active part in the building of the old church at the corner of Franklin and Pearl streets in 1842, and acting as chairman of the building committee for the new church at Fifth and Elm streets in 1889. It was greatly through his efforts that the mortgage on the new church was cancelled, he having the honor and pleasure of burning the mortgage in the presence of the congregation. If Mr. Hepler acknowledged a fad it was the collecting of buttons, and he had, perhaps, the largest collection of this kind in the country, his specimens numbering about 78,000. Among these are buttons of every description, some of them interesting relics of the battlefields in various parts of the world. He also had a collection of 500 varieties of wood, gathered from all parts of the world, and in addition thereto collected many curios of various descriptions.


p. 932


Joseph S. Hepner, a representative citizen and retired school teacher of Berks county, who is now carrying on agricultural operations in the vicinity of Hamburg, was born in Windsor township, Berks Co., Pa., Dec. 9, 1852, son of Jacob Hepner, also of that township.

Christian Hepner, of Windsor township, the grandfather of Joseph S., was born Sept. 16, 1775, and carried on farming until his decease, Mary 25, 1856, at the age of eighty. He was married to Anna Maria Hoffman, of Perry township, who was born Sept. 5, 1781, and died Nov. 9, 1861, aged eighty years. They had four children, namely: Eliza, who married Samuel Hampsher; Samuel, who married Catherine Borkey; Jacob; and William, who married Hannah Stoyer.

Jacob Hepner, father of Joseph S., was born March 28, 1814, and died March 2, 1890. He was a farmer by occupation and also carried on the business of a building contractor. He was the principal contractor for the Schuylkill Navigation Company, between Pottsville and Reading, and he laid the foundation of St. John's Union Church at Hamburg, and reconstructed the big Blue Mountain dam in the Schuylkill river, north of Hamburg, after its destruction by the flood of 1850.

He married Elizabeth Stoyer, of Windsor township, born Oct. 25, 1817, who died April 25, 1898, and they had six children: Jacob; Alfred, Christian and Henry, who died young; Samuel, who married Hannah Hollenbach, by whom he had three daughters, and later Hattie Behler, unto whom were born two daughters; and Joseph S. Mrs. Jacob Hepner was a daughter of Samuel Stoyer of Windsor township, who was born Feb. 13, 1791, and who carried on farming and broom-making until his decease, Aug. 20, 1878. He married Catherine Focht, of the same township, born Nov. 6, 1792, died July 14, 1845, and they had seven children: Catherine, who married John Billman; Hannah, who married William Hepner; Sarah Ann, who married William S. Deisher; Samuel, who married Catherine Weidman; Daniel, who married Annie Miller; Benneville, who married Catherine Raubenhold; and Elizabeth, Mrs. Jacob Hepner.

Joseph S. Hepner was educated in the public schools of his native township and at the Keystone State Normal School, at Kutztown, after leaving which latter institution, in 1869, he engaged in teaching in Windsor township, and at Kutztown for a period covering twenty-five years. In 1885 he received a permanent certificate to teach. During this time he was also engaged in agricultural pursuits. Mr. Hepner later conducted the hotel known as the "Washington House," at Hamburg, and then he turned his attention to farming in the vicinity of the borough, which occupation he has followed ever since. In politics he has always been a stanch Democrat. He was elected a school director of the South ward in the spring of 1904, and is now serving his second term of three years. He had been the very efficient secretary of the board since 1905. Mr. Hepner is one of the foremost and most enterprising school directors Hamburg has ever had. He is profoundly interested in the success of the schools.

Mr. Hepner married Sinnorah Yeager, of Windsor township, daughter of John and Elizabeth (Rothermel) Yeager, and to their union there were born three children: Alvin J. J., of Kutztown, married Mamie Angstadt, and they have been blessed with a bright and promising daughter, Lona V. Hepner; Laura is a highly esteemed teacher in the borough schools of Mount Penn; Mamie married Oscar Rhode, of Kutztown, and one son has been born to them.

In the fall of 1907 the First National Bank of Hamburg, Pa., was organized and the business men of the borough placed Mr. Hepner at the head of this institution. He is also a stockholder in and director of the Hamburg Hoist Manufacturing Company, which is a local concern but recently organized by the people of Hamburg; is a heavy stockholder in the Hamburg Savings Bank; is the owner of a valuable tract of twenty-eight acres of land in Greenwich township, a double dwelling house on Washington street, one on Main street and a number of valuable building lots, some located at Hamburg, and some in Brooklyn, New York.

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