Biographies from Historical and Biographical Annals by Morton Montgomery


p. 1388


James B. Levan, a farmer at Mountain post-office, in Albany township, Berks county, was born on the farm n which he now resides, Feb. 23, 1849, son of Benjamin and Anna (Lutz) Levan. At the time of his birth the family home was in the old log house of Indian depredation fame. It was commonly known as the "Fort," and many times when the Indians were on the war path the white settlers would flee thither for protection. It was built with inside stairs to the upper floor, so constructed that they could be drawn up and prevent the Indians from reaching the refugees. During the French and Indian war many of the settlers were cruelly murdered by the savages, among these being a Mrs. Shissler, whose husband and daughter escaped a like fate by crawling through the window of their burning cabin and finding safety with neighbors.

Daniel Levan, grandfather of James B., was a native of Exeter township, Berks county, Pa. He died on his farm in Albany township before 1840, and is buried in a private burial ground on the farm now owned by James B. He came from Exeter to Albany in 1813, and bought the farm now owned by his grandson from his father-in-law, Peter Fries, and on this farm he lived until his death. He met his wife, a Miss Fries, in Reading, and their children were: Lydia m. Reuben Smith; Sally m. Benjamin Kramer; Benjamin; Maria (1815-1891) m. David Lutz, brother of Samuel; and Daniel, a farmer and blacksmith at Wessnersville, where he owned the farm now the property of Henry Leiby, and was the father of the following children: Lavina, Casetta, William, Cordelia, Belisa, Mrs. Henry Leiby and Dr. Walter.

Benjamin Levan, son of Daniel, was born in Exeter township, Feb. 27, 1813, and died in Albany, Nov. 17, 1878. He was but one month old when his parents brought him to Albany township, and he lived there during the remainder of his life. He received a limited education in the neighborhood, when schools were held by Germans in private houses. He farmed all his active life, but was retired some years before his death. He hauled the products of his farm over the Blue Mountains to Schuylkill county. He prospered in his work and he saw many changes in the Levan home. He was a member (Reformed) of the New Bethel Church, where both he and his wife, Anna Lutz (born Jan. 7, 1812, died Dec. 31, 1893), daughter of Frederick Lutz, are buried. To him and his wife were born nine children: Amanda m. David Heinly; Loriah m. Samuel Hartman; Leanda m. (first) Jonathan Smith, and (second) Samuel De Turk; Mary Jane m. William Heinly; Casetta, died aged about two years; James B.; Benjamin lives at Lynnport, Pa.; Elmira m. Edwin D. Kistler, a merchant at Wessnersville; and Albert D. is a merchant at Mountain, Albany township.

James B. Levan received his education in the township schools, and later attended a boarding school at Trappe, Montgomery county. He was substitute teacher for several years, and was reared to farming under his father, working for the latter until he was twenty-seven years of age. He began farming for himself, where he now lives, in the spring of 1877. In1879 this farm came into his possession. It is located at the base of the Blue Mountains, in the potato belt, and consists of 230 acres, about 100 acres being woodland. The log house that sheltered the family for three generations, and which was used as a fort in the Indian days, built about 1749, was torn down by Mr. Levan in 1898. Many Indian relics such as tomahawks, arrows, spear heads, etc., have been found on the Levan farm. Mr. Levan is blessed with a good water supply on his place, the Yellow spring being on his land, and the so called "sand spring" on the adjoining property. The present set of buildings were erected by Mr. Levan, the barn in 1880, and remodeled in 1905, and the large stone house in the eighties. Everything is strictly modern, and the well kept lawn is enclosed by an iron fence. Mr. Levan raises about fifteen acres of potatoes annually. In politics he is a Democrat, and has been supervisor of his district. He and his family attend New Bethel Church, of which they are Reformed members, and in which he has served as deacon.

In 1877 Mr. Levan married Rosa Kistler, daughter of David and Maria (Fetherolf) Kistler, of Kistler's Valley. Five sons and five daughters have blessed this union: Dr. George K., of Reading; Annie, m. to John Long, station agent at Wanamakers, Pa.; Miss Maggie; Benjamin, a painter, unmarried; James, a miller at Wanamakers; Jennie, a graduate of the Keystone State Normal School, and now a successful teacher in Albany township; John, a farmer at home; Sallie, in school; Charles, a farmer at home; Pauline, at home.

Dr. George K. Levan, son of James B., was born on his father's farm Nov. 3, 1877, and was educated in the public schools of his district, graduating from the Albany school in 1897. He then went to Reading and worked in a drug store, attending night school, and taking private instruction in Latin from Edward D. Trexler. He then entered the Department of Pharmacy in the Medico-Chirurgical College, and graduated in the class of 1903. In the fall of that year he began the study of medicine at the same institution, and graduated in 1907. H was then elected a resident physical of Reading Hospital, where he served one year. In the fall of 1908 he located at No. 300 South Fifth street, Reading, where he has been very successful in building up a good patronage. He holds the temporary position of Physician of the Reading School District. He is a member of the Berks County Medical Society, the Pennsylvania State Medical Society and the American Medical Association. Fraternally he is a member of Isaac Hiester Lodge, No. 660, F. & A. M. He is a self made man, his professional training having been gained through his own efforts, and he is justly entitled to the respect of his fellow men.


p. 1491


John S. Levan, residing at No. 623 North Ninth street, Reading, follows the business of carpenter and builder and is well and favorably known to a large number of his fellow citizens. He was born in Exeter township, in 1860, a son of Peter S. and Sarah E. (Snyder) Levan.

Daniel Levan, the paternal grandfather, was a farmer in Exeter township almost all his life, and became a man of prominence, holding various township offices, and of substance, leaving property to his family. He had three sons: Edward, who married Amelia Snyder; Peter, father of John S.; and Daniel, who died unmarried. The Levan family has always been Democratic in its political sentiment and of the Reformed Church religiously.

Peter S. Levan followed farming and carpentering all his life. He died in 1893, aged seventy-one years. His widow survived to the same age, dying in 1897. They had nine children, as follows: Mary, who died young; Ellen, who married Amos Goodhardt; Sarah, who married Franklin Heister; Daniel and Mahlon, both of whom died young; Charity, who married Samuel Gilbert; John S.; Hannah, who died young, and another child who died in infancy.

John S. Levan enjoyed the educational opportunities offered by the schools of Exeter township and then started to farming. He showed an aptitude for carpenter work and did a great deal of repair work before starting at the age of twenty-two years to learn the trade, with a neighbor, Henry Fisher. He completed his trade with Elam Hook, with whom he remained for twelve years and then engaged with Raymond Moore, a contractor at Birdsboro, with whom he remained six years. Mr. Levan then farmed for several years, but in March, 1904, he came to Reading where he has found plenty of work in his line ever since. He has invested in real estate here and owns his comfortable home.

Mr. Levan married Kate K. Young, daughter of Nathan Young, of Exeter. They have seven living children, namely: Walter, Daniel, Joseph, George, Sallie, Edgar and Catherine.

Mr. Levan is a member of Washington Camp, P. O. S. of A.; of the Maccabees and of the Carpenters Union.


p. 980


John Y. Levan, who died in Reading, Feb. 7, 1885, was for many years closely identified with the hatting business in the city. He was born in 1845, in Philadelphia, Pa., son of Isaac W. Levan, for many years president of the Penn national Bank.

John Y. Levan received his education in the schools of Reading, to which city his father had removed when John Y. was but a child. After receiving his literary training, his first work was at the hatting business, which trade he learned, and at which business he was employed all of his life. Mr. Levan was married to Emma Row, daughter of Henry M. and Angelina (Sitzinger) Row, and to them was born a son, Harry E. In religious belief Mr. and Mrs. Levan were Reformed.

Harry E. Levan, son of John Y. and Emma (Row) Levan, died in 1899, aged thirty-four years. He married Ella Ruth, by whom he had six children: John Y., Florence E., Daniel H., Ruth M., Harry E., and George L. (deceased).

Harry E. Levan was a machinist by trade and was working at the Reading Hardware Works. He was a member of the Second Reformed Church, in the work of which he was active, his wife being connected with that religious body. Mr. Levan was popular in the city, and was connected with the Rainbow Fire Company, of which his father had been president for many years.

John Y. Levan, oldest son of Harry E., was born in Reading, Pa., Aug. 14, 1887, and is a tinsmith by trade. On March 22, 1909, he engaged in the grocery business. He married Sept. 10, 1908, Corrine T. Moser.


p., 957


Nathan E. Levan, a representative citizen of Exeter township, Berks county, and the owner of an excellent 215-acre farm, was born July 5, 1854, in Exeter township, son of Joseph and Caroline (Bechtel) Levan.

Abraham Levan, grandfather of Nathan E., was the son of Jacob, who was the son of Isaac, who came from France, being a French Huguenot, and who is supposed to have settled in Berks county and spent the remainder of his life there. Abraham Levan was reared on the old home farm in Exeter township, where he lived to the age of seventy-eight years, his whole life being, spent in agricultural pursuits. He owned four farms, aggregating 1,200 acres, his home farm being at Jacksonwald. He was one of the most influential men of his day in Berks county, and was a pillar of the Reformed Church, his father having been a member of the building committee of the Schwartzwald Church. Abraham Levan married Maria Bechtel, and they had seven children: Jacob, Susan. Elizabeth, Joseph, Abraham, and two who died in childhood.

Joseph Levan, father of Nathan E., was born June 9, 1803, and died Dec. 10, 1872. He was a farmer all of his life and was the owner of five different tracts, consisting in all of 1,500 acres of land. Like his father he was very prominent in his day, and was an active Democrat, serving as delegate to county conventions, and as a member of the school board. He was a member of the building, committee of the new Schwartzwald Church, in 1870. Mr. Levan married Caroline Bechtel, born in 1817, who died in February, 1907, daughter of John T. Bechtel, of Caernarvon township, Berks county. Mr. and Mrs. Levan had these children: Mary and Joseph are deceased; Abraham; Jacob N. died in October, 1906; Cyrus is deceased; Nathan E.; and David died July 10, 1904.

Nathan E. Levan was reared on the home farm, and received his education in the public schools of his native district, also spending one term at Prof. D. B. Brunner's school in Reading. As a youth he took up farming as his life work, and this he has followed throughout his career. He is now the owner of a fine 215-acre farm, which is in a high state of cultivation, and here he resides in comfort. Mr. Levan is a man of more than the ordinary intelligence, is a great reader, and possesses a well chosen library. In political matters he is a Democrat, and his fellow townsmen have elected him to positions of trust and responsibility, including the offices of auditor, inspector and judge of election. He is a member of the Reformed Church, while Mrs. Levan is a Lutheran.

On June 18, 1881, Mr. Levan was married to Miss Mary Amanda Kerper, daughter of John and Joanna (Moore) Kerper, of Exeter township, the former of whom died Nov. 25, 1889, at the age of eighty years, and the latter in August, 1887. Daniel Kerper, grandfather of John, was. the first sheriff of Berks county. John Kerper was a wheelwright by trade, but early in life he gave up that occupation and engaged in farming in Exeter township, on the old Kerper homestead, the place of his birth, as well as that of his daughter, Mrs. Levan. He was an expert post fence maker, and many of the farms of Berks county bear evidence of his skill in this line. He and his family were members of the Lutheran Church. His children were: Joseph is a farmer of Berks county; Henry is deceased; William is a farmer; Sallie m. Abraham Trout; Irwin is deceased; Mary Amanda m. Mr. Levan; Jonas is deceased; Elizabeth m. Jacob Levan, deceased; Euphemia Howard, Nathan and Matilda are deceased.

Nathan E. Levan and his wife are the parents of ten children: Mary m. George E. Wise, a member of the firm of Case & Wise, cathedral glaziers and art glass makers; Joseph D., a brakeman on the Philadelphia & Reading R. R., served four years in the U. S. Navy: Annie m. George Goodhart, who is employed in the car shops of the Philadelphia & Reading Railway Company: John is a weaver in Brumbach's woolen mill; Abraham is a machinist; Aaron, is also employed in the woolen mill; and Margaret A., Arthur, Grace E. and Ruth.


p. 608


Walton G. Levan, for many years a business man of Reading, bore a name not only to be found in the military annals of this country, but also well known in France in connection with the old Huguenot days. The family was founded in America by three brothers, Jacob, Isaac and Abraham, who fled from their native land in 1715 to escape persecution and came to Pennsylvania, settling in Berks county, one near Kutztown, one in Oley Valley and one in what is now Reading. A warlike strain has run through their descendants and we find them among the defenders of liberty in both 1775 and 1861.

Abraham Levan, grandfather of Walton G., in the earlier part of his life resided in York, York county, a place then known as Little York. He was engaged in business as a hatter and dealt almost entirely, whether for laying in supplies or disposing of his goods when finished, in Baltimore, Md. Later he settled in Reading and carried on the same business there. He was one of the leading supporters of the old Reformed Church there, and when he died, at an advanced age, was buried in the cemetery, at the corner of Sixth and Washington streets.

Isaac N. Levan, son of Abraham, was born and brought up in York and there learned the trade of a hatter under his father. On moving to Reading, however, he went into the nail cutting line instead, traveling through Ohio, Illinois, Indiana and Virginia. He returned to Reading about 1869 and went into the hat business again, opening a retail establishment at No. 727 Penn street where he continued a few years, then bought the property No. 719 Penn street and there continued until his death, in 1892, at the age of seventy-three years. His wife was Elizabeth, daughter of Joseph Guiel, resident of Canada, where Mrs. Levan was born, but later he removed to Connecticut. Mr. Guiel was a famous Indian scout and during the Rebellion his services were employed by the government. The last years of his life were spent in work among the Indians. Mr. and Mrs. Levan had children as follows: Walton G., John A., Edgar M., Annie A., Ella G. (m. Peter Weber, of Lancaster, Pa.), I. Newton, (of Wilmington, Del.), and Florence (wife of Dr. Charles W. Bachman, of Reading).

Walton G. Levan was born in Baltimore, Md., Jan. 27, 1846. He came to Reading with his parents when only a child, and after completing his education in the public schools began to learn the trade which his father and grandfather before him had followed. This was during the period of the war, and after serving six months of his apprenticeship he enlisted in Company B, 2d Pennsylvania Cavalry under Gen. David McM. Gregg. He served in all two years and six months and during that time was once seriously wounded, in the battle of Hunter's Run, Oct. 22, 1864. The injury was in the left leg and he suffered from its effects to the end of his life. Mr. Levan was honorably discharged July 20, 1865, and returning to Reading, resumed work at his trade where he had left off. He followed that line of work without intermission, in 1869 becoming associated in the hat business with his father at No. 727 Penn street. Continuing with him until 1874, in that year he opened an establishment of his own at No. 48 South Seventh street which he conducted until 1877, when he closed out his store and went back to the bench. He remained in the shop until March 9, 1895, when he and his son established a hat store at No. 903 Penn street, having both a manufacturing and retail concern. Nine years after, to a day, they moved to the present location, No. 847 Penn street. Here his son now carries on what has become known as one of the most progressive hat stores in the city. In the rear of the store there is a plant for manufacturing hats for the local trade, and as Mr. Levan was a skilled mechanic himself, and superintended his own workrooms, he established a splendid reputation for the output. His son, Isaac N. Levan, became a partner in the firm in 1897 and they did business under the firm name of W. L. Levan & Son. Mr. Levan was actively engaged in business until a few days before his death, though he had been suffering for some months with dropsy, from which he died Nov. 18, 1906, in his sixty-first year. He was one of the best-known men in his line in Reading.

Mr. Levan married Catharine Boylan, who survives him, resides in the home at No. 133 North Eighth street. They had one son, Isaac N. Levan, who married Mary A. Siegfried, and had three children, namely: Bertha A., Walton G. and William A. Mr. Levan was a member of Keim Post, No. 76, G. A. R.


p. 1663


Wellington R. Le Van, whose death occurred in Reading April 11, 1900, had retired from business some years prior to his decease. He was born in the city of Reading, April 11, 1835, son of Abraham and Justina (Wrightmyer) Le Van.

Abraham Le Van was born in Maxatawny township, Berks county, and received his education in the common schools. In early life he was an engineer but on removing to Reading engaged in the grain and feed business, in which he became very successful. He married Justina Wrightmyer, and they had five children: Wellington R.; Mary (m. George East); Ellen, single; Emma, deceased: and an infant.

Wellington R. Le Van was educated in the schools of Reading, and when a young man learned the machinist's trade, which he followed for thirty-five years in the shops of the. Philadelphia & Reading railroad, for many years being foreman of one of the departments. About three years prior to his death he retired from active work. Mr. Le Van was married in 1862 to Miss Kate Leitzinger, daughter of Henry and Elizabeth (Moyer) Leitzinger. Mrs. Le Van was horn on the site of her present property. Two children were born to Mr. and Mrs. Le Van: Mary M. m. William From, lives at Sinking Spring. Berks county, and has four children--Mayme m. Charles E. Stott and has one child. Ruth, the only great grand-child of Mrs. LeVan, Geraldine, J. Wellington and Dorothy; Anna L., who m. C. H. Loveland. a native of New York State, now a resident of Winchester, Ky., has two children, Nancy L., and Le Van H.

Mr. Le Van was a member of Lodge No. 62, F. & A M.. and of the I. 0. 0. F. He was a consistent member of the First Reformed Church. A good husband, a kind and affectionate father, a public-spirited citizen and honest, Christian gentleman, Wellington Le Van was known and respected all over the community in which he spent so many years. He was one of Reading's representative men.


p. 1121


WILLIAM J. LEVAN, an energetic and enterprising young business man of Reading, Pa., engaged in the manufacture of glue, is a native of the city, born in December, 1871, son of Joseph Levan. Daniel Levan, grandfather of William J., was a resident of Berks county, and the pioneer glue manufacturer thereof, a business in which, with his brother, he continued until his death at the age of fifty-one years. His children were: Daniel, in the fertilizer business in Lebanon, Pa.; Catherine; Sallie; George; Samuel; Edward and Joseph. Joseph Levan was born in Reading in 1839, and was well known and highly esteemed. He engaged in the manufacture of hats on Penn street, near Eleventh, and continued in the business for five years, when he engaged in the glue business, his first plant being in the rear of his hat factory, and he later took the old plant in Exeter township, where he continued until his death, Dec. 21, 194, aged sixty-five years. He was buried in the Charles Evans cemetery. He married Elizabeth Gahres, who now resides with her son, William J. They had two children, our subject, and Catherine (deceased). William J. Levan attended the public schools and one term at Stewarts Academy, and then began assisting his father in the glue business, and at the latters death took up the management of the business in which he has continued to the present time, being very successful. The plant, which was started in Exeter township in 1875, is five stories high, the main building being 40 X 75 ft., and the wing 3 X 70 ft. It is fitted with an eighty horse-power boiler in a 20 X 40 ft. boiler house, and a twenty horse-power engine. Mr. Levan manufactures the finest grade of glues, and his goods are in demand all over the United States. He employs from ten to fifteen skilled workmen. Mr. Levan married Clara R. Hartman, daughter of Daniel Hartman, of Reading, and they reside at No. 1114 Perkiomen avenue. Mr. and Mrs. Levan have these children: Estella May, Ruth Adell, Lee DeWitt, Elsie Margaret, Russell Joseph, Mary Elizabeth and William H. Mr. Levan is a Republican. He is a member of Zions U. B. Church, and takes an active part in its work, having been organist and chorister for fifteen years, and superintendent of the Sunday school for twelve years. He is a member of the Knights of Malta, the Knights of Friendship Camp No. 212, P. O. S. of A., the Maccabees, and the Jr. O. U. A. M.


p. 909


William S. Levan, of Mount Penn, Berks county, who is now serving as a member of the borough council, was born Jan. 12, 1869, on the old Stauffer homestead, near "Black Bear Hotel," in Exeter township, Berks county, son of Jacob and Emma (Stauffer) Levan.

Mr. Levan was educated in the schools of Exeter township, and at the age of fourteen years entered the A. J. Brumbach woolen mills at St. Lawrence, being first engaged at burling cloth. He was then promoted to weaver, then to cloth finisher and finally to foreman carder. After about two years at the head of this department, Mr. Levan resigned, and he has since bought out the French Sanitary Coffee Company, of Reading, Pa., which business he now conducts at Mount Penn. He is an active Republican and is serving his second term as a member of the borough council. He is connected with the Mount Penn Fire company, of which he was a charter member and its recording secretary. He is a member of St. John's Lodge, No. 435, F. & A. M., Excelsior Chapter, No. 237, Reading Commandery, No. 42, K. T., Reading Lodge of Perfection, and Rajah Temple, A. A. O. N. M. S.; and Camp No. 230, P. O. S. of A., St. Lawrence. He is a member of Unger's Band of Reading, and is its president. Mr. and Mrs. Levan attend the Schwartzwald Reformed Church, in which he is a member of the choir.

On Jan. 25, 1890, Mr. Levan was married to Miss Sallie Stoner, daughter of Solomon and Susan (Quinter) Stoner.

Solomon Stoner, who was one of the leading citizens of Mount Penn, was born at Stonersville June 10, 1838, and died Oct. 28, 1900, at his home in Mount Penn. His education was obtained in the local schools, after leaving which he engaged in a mercantile business, which he continued until 1893. In connection with this business he acted as clerk at many sales, owned and operated an extensive farm and conducted the "Red Lion Hotel" at Baumstown. In political matters he was a Democrat, but was never active in politics. He was a member of the Reformed Church. In 1893 Mr. Stoner associated himself with the Mutual Fire Insurance Company, of Berks county, as secretary, and served in that capacity until the illness that ended in his death caused his retirement. For some years he held a commission as notary public. In 1889 he located at Dengler's, now Mount Penn, and there made his home for the remainder of his life, his residence being one of the pleasant homes of that thriving borough. Mr. Stoner was a quiet, unassuming man, a lover of home and family, kind and gentle, a deep thinker and great reader. He was noted for his business ability, and as a man of honor was intrusted with the settlement of various valuable estates.

Mr. Stoner was married to Susan Quinter, daughter of Joseph and Mary (Romig) Quinter, and granddaughter of Peter and Susan (Treugel) Quinter. Peter Quinter was a shoemaker at Suckertown, in Exeter township, and he and his wife lived to advanced ages, dying in the faith of the Lutheran Church. Among the children in their large family was Joseph Quinter, the father of Mrs. Stoner. Joseph Quinter was born at Suckertown, and grew up in Exeter township, where he spent his life, operating a small farm. He and his wife were members of the Lutheran church. They had the following thirteen children: Ephraim, deceased; Sarah, deceased, wife of Simeon Snyder; two who died in infancy; Mary Ann, who died unmarried; Anna, who died in childhood; Samuel, a laborer of Birdsboro, married to Emma Schell; Peter, of Reading, married to Kate Ganster; Susan, widow of Mr. Stoner; Daniel, of Mount Penn, who married Amelia Faber; Joseph, of Buttertown, who married Christina Hill; Charles, of West Reading, who married Hannah Hill; and Levi, of Suckertown, who married Catherine Fisher.

To Mr. and Mrs. Solomon Stoner were born these children: (1) Calvin Stoner, a carpenter of Philadelphia, died there Feb. 20, 1908, aged forty-one years, ten months, nineteen days, and was buried in the family plot in Schwartzwald cemetery. He married Emma Bright and they had two sons, Paul A. and Solomon J. (2) Laura died Sept. 3, 1881, aged fourteen years. (3) Sallie is the wife of Mr. Levan. (4) Bessie is at home. The family are members of the Reformed Church at Schwartzwald, at which place Mr. Stoner was buried.


p. 1048


William Y. Levan, of Boyertown, was born Nov. 23, 1867, at Reading, and is a member of a family which has been settled in Berks county for several generations.

The Levans are of French Huguenot origin, and this branch of the family is descended from Isaac Levan, whose father, Daniel Levan, a French Huguenot, left Picardy, France, and went to Holland, where Isaac was born in about 1700. He was one of four brothers who came to America, one dying, however, before his arrival. The other three settled in Berks county, Pa., one in Oley township, one in Maxatawny, and one in Exeter. Isaac, the one who settled in Exeter, came to the new land in about 1730, this fact being established by the records of land grants made to him bearing the dates 1731 and 1734 and 1737-38, as well as grants made him along the Schuylkill river, this land aggregating in all over a thousand acres, most of which was in Exeter townships. Some of the property has remained in the family ever since. He and his wife, Mary Margaret, had these children: Abraham, Isaac, Daniel, Jacob, Mary and Judith.

Jacob Levan, son of Isaac, was the great-great-grandfather of William Y. Levan. He lived and died in Exeter, falling heir to a goodly portion of his father's estate, his possessions including the old homestead, known as the Cyrus Levan estate, in Exeter, and the tannery. He also added to the original property by purchase, and at the time of his death, when he had been living retired some years, he was considered one of the most substantial citizens and largest landowners in his section of Berks county. He married Susannah Ludwig, and the had a large family, among whom were Jacob and Abraham.

Jacob Levan, son of Jacob, was a farmer in Exeter, where he passed his life. He owned between five hundred and six hundred acres of land, all in one body. He died in 1852, in the faith of the Reformed Church. He married Catharine Fegeley, who bore him two children: Anna married Capt. Henry Schaeffer, of Reading; Isaac was the grandfather of William Y. Levan.

Isaac Levan, son of Jacob, was a farmer all his life in Exeter township, where he owned between four hundred and five hundred acres of land. He died upon his farm in 1857, at the age of forty-one years, and was buried in the new cemetery at the Schwartzwald Church. He was a leading member of the Reformed Church and a stanch Democrat in politics. He was twice married, his first wife being Rebecca Brumbach, daughter of Jacob Brumbach. She died in 1853, when thirty-three years old, the mother of the following named children: (1) William B., born March 21, 1842, in Exeter township, when a young man learned telegraphy, and was employed with the P. & R. Co. for a period of twenty-five years. In March, 1893, when the Reading National Bank was organized, he became its messenger, and here he is still employed. He enlisted in August, 1862, in Co. A. 128th Regiment, Pa. Vols., for the nine months' call, and was discharged in May, 1863. He married in 1864 Miss Clarinda Adams, daughter of John and Hannah (Koller) Adams. Six children born to this union, namely: Rosa married Alfred Bordes, and they reside in Philadelphia (they have a son, Raymond); Rebecca married Darias Fisher, and they have one child, Leroy; Laura married James Loose, and they have a child, Catharine; Bessie, widow of Harry Addis, has two children, Margaret and Robert; Alice married Daniel H. Herflicker, has one child, Mabel, and resides at Camden, N. J.; and Florence is at home. William B. Levan resides at No. 133 Pear street, Reading. (2) Jacob B. resides at St. Lawrence, Exeter township. (3) Isaac B. is the father of William Y. (4) George died in childhood. (5) Daniel died in infancy. (6) Henry B. is a merchant at Lorane, Pa. In 1856 Mr. Levan married (second) Louisa Wien, and one child was born to this union, Rebecca, the wife of John B. Knorr, of Reading.

Isaac B. Levan was born in 1846 in Exeter township, and attended the public schools there, later going to Boyertown Academy. He taught school for a time in Berks county, was appointed deputy sheriff, and served under George D. Boyer, and part of George B. Schaeffer's term. He then bought a farm in Virginia, where he spent on year, and on his return to Pennsylvania went to Lancaster county, where he was appointed deputy sheriff. He served in that capacity for a period of nine years, after which he located at Manheim, Lancaster county, where he is still making his home. He is engaged in the creamery business, which he began when he settled at Manheim.

Mr. Levan married (first) Mary E. Yeich, daughter of William Yeich, of Reading, a pioneer tinsmith of that city. She died in 1878, the mother of seven children: William Y., Annie E., Laura E., J. Harry (m. Annie Montgomery and lives in Reading), Mary M. (m. Fred Cook), E. Alice (m. William Smith) and Edith M. Mr. Levan's second marriage was to Lizzie Woodworth, and to this union were also born seven children, of whom three are living, Allen, Estella and Helen.

William Y. Levan received his education in the public schools of his native city, and after commencing work was with the Reading Telephone Company for some time, during 1886-87. He then learned the tinsmith's trade from George W. Hassinger, finishing his apprenticeship under him, and followed that calling as a journeyman until he engaged in business on his own account in Reading, in 1892, on Bingaman street, above Eighth. From there he removed to Mount Penn borough, where he was located for six years, and in 1900 he changed to Manheim, in Lancaster county, where he was in business until August, 1907, since which time he has been a resident of Boyertown. Here he has been doing business at the old Lefevre stand, and he is well known in and around the borough. He follows all the various branches of his trade, doing tin roofing, spouting and general sheet metal work, and dealing in stoves, ranges, furnaces and hot water and steam heaters, installing the different kinds of heating plants.

Mr. Levan married Regina Bickel, daughter of Moses Bickel, of upper Berks county, Pa. He is a member of the Keystone Fire Company and of the Firemen's Relief of Boyertown.


p. 1630


Andrew J. Levengood, who was president of the Penn Planing Mill Company, of Reading, Pa., was born March 14, 1866, at Hazleton, Pa., son of William Y. and Margaret (Corbett) Levengood.

William Y. Levengood was "boss" carpenter for the Philadelphia & Reading Railroad. He was a soldier in the Civil war, and died in 1898, aged sixty-two. His wife died in 1896, aged sixty. They had the following children: Emma (m. Howard Heller); Hettie (m. Forrest Melhouse); Edith (m. Harry They); Frank, deceased; Andrew J.; Amelia (m. Joseph Engel); John, and engineer in the Pottstown Iron Company's plant. The family belong to the Reformed Church.

Andrew J. Levengood received his education in the schools of Pottstown, where his parents had removed, from Hazleton, when he was one year old, and his first work after leaving school was the learning of the carpenter's trade with his father. He then entered the employ of the Fisher Planing Mill, where he learned all the details of mill work and in 1892 located in Reading, finding employment at the Shunk Planing mill. He continued with that company until it went into liquidation, when the Penn Planing Mill Company became its successor and Mr. Levengood was made president, Harry Shunk vice-president; and Conrad B. High, secretary and treasurer. The new company has been very successful under President Levengood's able management, their orders being far ahead of the work turned out. The mill has the reputation of doing the finest class of work and the company enjoys some of Reading's best trade, although their operations are not confined to the city alone, but extend to the smaller towns and cities in the surrounding country. The mill has been operating on this site for sixty-three years. Mr. Levengood retired from this company to enter the real estate and building business. Mr. Levengood was married in 1888 to Elizabeth S. Fryer, daughter of William and Sarah Fryer. They are members of St. Paul's Memorial Reformed Church of which he is at present acting as deacon. Mr. Levengood is very prominent in fraternal circles, being a member of Lodge No. 62, F. & A. M., Excelsior Chapter, R. A. M.; Reading Commandery, K. T.; and Rajah Temple, A. A. O. N. M. S.; Lodge of Perfection, 14, Reading; Philadelphia Consistory, 32d degree; Manatawny Lodge, I. O. O. F., No 214; and Mt. Penn encampment of Reading.

Mr. and Mrs. Levengood are survivors of the Honda wreck of May 10, 1907, and did excellent service in helping to alleviate the sufferings of the less fortunate and also in assisting in the removal of the bodies from Santa Barbara to Reading.


p. 1163


William B. Leavengood, an iron worker in the employ of the Glendale Rolling Mills, was born in Douglass township, Berks county, Jan. 22, 1877, son of Samuel and Elizabeth (Brunner) Levengood and grandson of David Levengood.

Samuel Levengood, father of William B., was born in Pottstown, Montgomery Co., Pa. In his earlier life he worked in a rolling mill, and later became a repair man on the railroad. After his marriage he lived at Buckmanville, Pa., where he died Dec. 11, 1877. He married Elizabeth Brunner, daughter of William and Matilda (Lessig) Brunner. She was born in Douglass township, Dec. 15, 1849. They had one child, William B.

William B. Levengood grew to sturdy manhood in his father's home, and then for several years was hired out among the neighboring farmers. At the age of sixteen he began working in the Glasgow Rolling Mills, where he continued nine years, and for three years, 1900 to 1903, he again turned his attention to agriculture. At the end of that time he took his present position in the Glendale rolling Mills. By thrift and economy he has been able to buy a twelve-acre tract in Douglass township which he has in excellent condition. It was formerly the property of the Shoemaker family. Mr. Levengood is a man of excellent habits, and is highly respected. He belongs to the Pottstown Lutheran Church.

LEVENGOOD. The first of the Levengood family in America was Ulrich Leibengood, who was born in 1688 in Alsace, Lorraine. He came to America on the "Charming Betsy". John Ball, master, sailing from Rotterdam, last from London. He settled in New Hanover township, Montgomery county, Pa. His wife Susanna was born in 1697, and their children (five in number) were all born in Germany, their ages at landing in America being given in the Pennsylvania archives as follows, 16, 13, 10, 8, and 5. The children were: Johan Peter, born 1717; Adam, 1720; Jacob, 1723; Maria, 1725; and Anna, 1728.

Adam Leibenguth, son of Ulrich, was born in Alsace, Lorraine, in 1720, and made his home in Douglass township, Berks county, where he was a farmer, owning a 160 acre tract. he died in April, 1804. He married in New Hanover township, Trappe Church records, Christine Gansertine.

Matthias Leavengood, son of Adam, was born Jan. 20, 1749, and died Nov. 10, 1835. During the war of the Revolution he served as a teamster. On Jan. 28, 1783, he married (Reformed Church records. Falkner Swamp, New Hanover township) Catharine Shuster, born Sept. 29, 1759, died April 11, 1860. Their children were: Solomon, Polly (Mary) m. John Reinert; Katie m. a Clouser; Betsy m. a Hatfield; Matthias, Jr., m. Elizabeth Reinert.

Matthias Levengood, Jr., son of Matthias, was born Jan. 4, 1801 and died Oct. 29, 1869. He lived on the homestead farm in Douglass township, where his father and grandfather had lived and died. He married Elizabeth Reinert, born Sept. 11, 1800, died May 16, 1871. Their children were: Reuben m. Rebecca Imbody; Rachael m Henry Buchert; Catharine m. Charles Mauger; Mary m. Aaron Yohn; Matthias R. m. Elizabeth Davidheiser; Sarah m. Isaac F. March; Elmina m. Lewis Yohn. Matthias Levengood, Jr., and his wife are buried at Amityville, where Matthias, Sr., helped to build the church.

Matthias R. Levengood, son of Matthias, Jr., was born in Douglass township, Berks county, Jan. 22, 1835. He attended the old pay schools a few short winters, and then the free schools later established. He was reared upon the farm and when twenty-three years old he learned the milling trade from John Nagel, of Douglass township. He was engaged in the milling business three years in that township, and in 1871 located in Earl township, now living near Worman, where he has a sixty-four acre farm which he cultivated until his retirement in 1902. his son George D. now cultivates the farm, which was the Ephraim Swavely tract, the latter obtaining it from his father John Swavely. Mr. Levengood is a Democrat, and for six years was school director in Earl township, and he was also a register assessor in his district. He and his family are members of the Lutheran church at Amityville, and for many years he was treasurer of the Sunday school.

In 1860 Mr. Levengood was married at Pottstown, to Elizabeth Davidheiser, daughter of George Davidheiser and this union was blessed with eleven children: Ida, deceased, m. Calvin Rhoads; Sarah m. Frank Reinert of Stowe, Pa.; Emma m. Daniel Weidner; Rufus, formerly a school teacher, is now a farmer in Amity township; Delilah m. Morris Hoffman; George is a school teacher and also the farmer on the homestead; Annie m. Calvin Rhoads (his former wife, Ida, having been her sister); Harvey is principal of the schools at Mauch Chunk, Pa.; and Elizabeth, Mary and Clayton all died small.

Peter Levengood, born Feb. 1, 1807, died April 19, 1876. His wife Elizabeth, born July 1, 1801, died Oct. 28, 1862.

Mary Levenguth, wife Daniel H. Shirey, born Nov. 23, 1824, died Aug. 4, 1890.

John Levengood, son of Joseph and Mary, born Nov. 28, 1798, died July 24, 1863.

Hannah, wife of John and daughter of John and Cath. Yocom, born April 30, 1795,died Jan. 10, 1871.

Daniel Levengood, born Dec. 20, 1801, died Sept.. 10, 1867.

Mary, wife of Daniel, and daughter of William and Barbara Hartranft, born April 20, 1800, died Dec. 11, 1866.

Last Modified Thursday, 16-Oct-2008 20:55:11 EDT

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