Biographies from Historical and Biographical Annals by Morton Montgomery


p. 1366


Jared G. Yarnell, a highly esteemed retired citizen of West Reading borough, Pa., who was for many years engaged in contracting in Spring township, Berks county, was born Feb. 23, 1840, in Bern township, son of George and Margaret (Lerch) Yarnell.

The Yarnell family is of old English Quaker stock. Francis and Peter Yarnell came from their native lands with the Hughes, Boones, Penroses, Kirbys, and Lightfoots, and settled in Oley township. They were of the fifty or more families who had been left out when the township was erected. The people to the "south part of Oley" therefore petitioned the Court at Philadelphia, in 1741, to erect that part into a township. The petition was granted. Among the sixteen signers to this petition were Francis and Peter Yarnell, one of whom was the great-grandfather of Jared G.

Peter Yarnell, grandfather of Jared G., had a brother Jasper, who was a blacksmith by trade, and who had settled in Maidencreek township prior to 1800; in 1802 he bought a tract of land in that district from Michael Dunkel. The Yarnell family was related by marriage to the Lightfoot family of the Revolutionary days. Peter Yarnell, the grandfather, is buried at the Quaker Meeting House in Maiden-creek township. He married Maria Yarnall (the original spelling of the name), and their one son, George, was born Aug. 4, 1793, in Maiden-creek township.

George Yarnell, son of Peter, obtained a fair education in the local schools and learned the shoemaking trade, which, however, he did not follow. He worked at the carpenter's trade, and also followed farming, having a small tract of land in Bern township, near "Leinbach's Hotel," where he died April 23, 1842, and was buried at Epler's Church. Mr. Yarnell married Margaret Lerch, born Jan 3, 1803, in Bern township, daughter of John and Margaret (Steffe) Lerch, who died Sept. 27, 1888, and was buried beside her husband. They were members of the Reformed church, and in politics, Mr. Yarnell was a Whig. To George and Margaret (Lerch) Yarnell there were born these children: Mary, born Feb. 16, 1825, is unmarried and reside at the Home for Widows and Single Women, Reading; Reuben J., born Jan 1, 1834, died unmarried Feb. 17, 1861; Catharine, born April 26, 1837, married Henry R. Tobias, of Bern township; and Jared G.

Jared G. Yarnell attended the schools of Bern township, and the Normal school for two terms, and then taught two winters in Bern and Brecknock townships, after which he learned the stone mason's trade, which he followed in connection with stone cutting for several years. He engaged for a short time in boating on the Schuylkill canal, and in 1867 engaged in the contracting business, beginning operations in this line by building the Albright school house in Bern township. He built ten county bridges, the waterworks at Fleetwood, the Maiden Creek pumping station and pipe line, and did a great deal of sewer contracting in the city, also breaking the ground for the City Park at Reading. For twenty-five years he did work for the city and county. In 1884 he located in West Reading, where he built fifteen private residences, but since 1905 he has been living retired. On Sept. 18, 1906, Mr. Yarnell met with an accident, through which he lost his left leg, eight and one-half inches below the knee.

At the beginning of the Civil war Mr. Yarnell enlisted in Company E. 42d regiment for the State defense, and in 1864 re-enlisted becoming on Sept 2d, a private in Company H, 205th Pa. V. I., with which he served until the close of the war, being with the Army of the Potomac. For many years Mr. Yarnell was a member of Keim Post. G. A. R. He was raised a Mason in 1882, belongs to Chandler Lodge, No. 227, F. & A. M., Reading Commandery No. 42, and Excelsior Chapter, No. 237. He was a member of LuLu Temple, of Philadelphia, and a charter member of Rajah Temple, A. A. O. N. M. S., Reading. In politics he is a stanch Republican, being one of the first councilmen of West Reading, and a prime mover in the establishment of the borough. He is a member of Bethany Lutheran Church, of which he has been an elder since 1902. On Feb. 10, 1867, Mr. Yarnell was married to Katie M. Adams, of Cumru township, daughter of Amos and Mary A. (Moore) Adams. One child has been born to this union: Charles W., alderman of the Fifth ward of Reading, who married Sarah, daughter of Albert Franks.


p. 1492


Edward Yeager, ex-mayor of Reading and one of the leading and representative men of the city, was born there July 6, 1859, the son of Abraham and Harriet (Dickinson) Yeager.

The Yeager family has been resident in America for three generations, the first to settle here bearing the name Abraham. He came from Wales at an early day and located first in Philadelphia, but after some years there moved to Reading, and remained in that city the rest of his life. He reared a large family of children.

Abraham Yeager (2) was born while his parents lived in Philadelphia, but spent his boyhood in Reading. When old enough to go to work he began in the confectionery line and after learning his trade conducted a store on the corner of 5th and Penn streets for many years. In time he abandoned this occupation and learned instead the trade of plumber, which he followed the rest of his life. He met with considerable success in this line and was comfortably off when he died. Mr. Yeager was very active in local politics and represented the Fifth ward of the city as a delegate to the Democratic county convention in 1862. He favored Daniel Ermentrout, who gained the nomination at that time for district attorney and was afterward elected. Abraham Yeager passed from this world June 20, 1870.

Mrs. Abraham Yeager was a Miss Harriet Dickinson and was born in Myerstown, Lebanon county, the daughter of Henry and Phoebe Dickinson. The union was a very happy one and was blessed with five sons and three daughters, namely: Clara E.; William B.; who conducts a tinsmithing, galvanizing and copper cornice establishment in Reading; Alice, who married Henry Heckman, a tinsmith and manufacturer of incubators in Oakland, Calif.; Henry P., who is employed in the establishment of Glase & Lichtenthaler, carpet dealers, of Reading; Edward; Pearson N., who has been employed for the past twelve years in the office of the passenger agent for the Philadelphia and Reading Railroad; Albert, deceased; and Phoebe, wife of Harry Krug, a clerk in the employ of the Philadelphia and Reading Railway, at Reading.

Edward Yeager was educated in the public schools of Reading, and then began to work in the japanning department of the Jones & Oaks Lock Works, Reading. After two years' experience with them, Mr. Yeager was employed for a time on the canal boat "Yubadon," under command of Capt. John W. Ringler, which plied the Susquehanna from the upper coal regions to tide water, returning with a cargo of watermelons in place of coal. After this, he was for six months in the boiler works of Enoch Reazor, as a rivet heater, but at the end of that time he decided to enter upon an entirely different activity and began preparing for the law.

Mr. Yeager first read law in the office of Daniel and James M. Ermentrout, prominent attorneys in Reading, and there, in January, 1880, he secured the appointment of Court Crier in all courts of the city except the Orphans Court, a capacity in which he has ever since served. He is a strong Democrat, politically, and has from early manhood been in active service for the party. His first office was in the common council, where he represented the 6th ward, and later he represented the same district in the select council, serving on the committees on law, fire and city property. He removed from the 6th ward to the 5th, which was Republican by about 285 votes, but such was the confidence inspired by Mr. Yeager's previous record, that he was elected again to the council by a majority of 96, and at the end of that term was re-elected by a majority of 116. In 1896 he was a candidate for the nomination of mayor but was defeated by one vote. Two years later, however, he secured the nomination, was elected and serviced with distinction. On the expiration of his term he was made city registrar and again proved himself an efficient man, as in every other capacity. He has always been a faithful worker, using his time and influence for the best interests of the city and has promoted many enterprises which proved of great benefit to the community. His valuable services have established him firmly in the good will of his fellow citizens and he stands deservedly high in Reading.

One of Mr. Yeager's main interests has been for many years the question of fire service. During his terms in the select council, his influence secured recognition of two newly organized companies in the fire department. He has been himself an active fireman since February, 1878, and during the greater part of the time has been preside of the Keystone Hook and Ladder Company, never missing a meeting unless prevented by official duties. He has also served frequently as a delegate to the State Fireman's Association and is widely known as a leading member of that body. It was almost entirely due to Mr. Yeager's efforts that the present quarters of the Keystone Truck and Chemical Company, built at a cost of $16,000, were paid for by the city the year following its erection.

On April 19, 1882, Mr. Yeager was united in marriage to Miss Kate Irene Grass, a lady whose admirable traits of character have won the affection of all with whom she is acquainted. Both Mr. and Mrs. Yeager are devoted members of the Baptist Church.

In fraternal as well as political circles, Mr. Yeager is a prominent figure, and he belongs also to various social organizations. He is president of the Independent Gun Club, of Reading; has been president of the West End Club for eleven years; president of the Commercial Club for the past two years; and is a member of Reading Lodge No. 549, F. and A. M.; of Reading Chapter, No. 152, R. A. M.; of De Molay Commandery, No. 9, Knights Templar; of Rajah Temple, A. A. O. N. M. S.; of the Foresters of America; of Wigwam No. 89, I. O. R. M.; and a charter member of Castle No. 8, Knights of the Golden Eagle.


p. 1262


Hiram P. Yeager, proprietor of the Pennsylvania Boiler Works, and a prominent citizen of Reading, Pa., was born in Schuylkill county, June 26, 1844, son of John L. and Mary (Gift) Yeager, and grandson of John Yeager.

John Yeager, the grandfather, who was a native of Germany and a hatter by trade, served as a soldier in the war of 1812. He and his wife were both buried in the Charles Evans cemetery, being members of the Reformed Church. In politics John Yeager was a Whig. He and his wife had seven children: John, Nicholas, Harry, George, Michael, Mrs. Whitman and Mrs. Seiders.

John L. Yeager, father of Hiram P., was also a hatter by occupation, a trade which he learned of his father. When a young man he located in Schuylkill county, and there for a number of years followed his trade, but later went into the hotel business, conducting a hostelry for about thirty years. Mr. Yeager died in 1858, aged fifty-seven years, while his widow survived him until 1879, being in her seventy-eighth year at the time of her death. He was a member of Orwigsburg Lodge, F. & A. M., of Schuylkill county. In politics he was a Whig.

Hiram P. Yeager, received his literary training in the schools of his native county, and in early youth learned the blacksmith's trade. In 1862, he enlisted in Company B, 129th Pa. V. I., and served with that regiment until 1863, when he was discharged; but he immediately re-enlisted, veteranizing with Co. B, 205th Pa. V. I., with which he remained until the close of the war. Mr. Yeager had an honorable war record, and was several times wounded in battle. On returning to Schuylkill county, Mr. Yeager learned the boilermaking trade, and went to Philadelphia to work on the Centennial grounds in 1876, later in the year locating in Reading where he worked for Reasor & McCoy for two years. He then engaged in business on his own account under the name of the Yeager Boiler Company, but was later connected with Wilson & Co. In 1905, he purchased Mr. Wilson's interest in the business, which he has since conducted alone, doing a general line of boiler repairing and manufacturing. He is a practical mechanic and an expert in his line, and the excellence of his work has won him a large patronage. Mr. Yeager is a member of Chandler Lodge, No. 227, F. & A. M., and of McLean Post No. 16, G. A. R. Politically he is a Republican. Mr. Yeager is a member of the Second Reformed Church of Reading.

Mr. Yeager has been twice married, his first wife, whom he married in 1872, being Anna Seigfred. Four children were born to that union: Harry, of Philadelphia; George and Luther of Reading; and Florence, at home. Mr. Yeager was married (second) in 1886, to Susan Koch. They have no children.


p. 606


William B. Yeager, proprietor of the Reading Cornice Works, with business situated on the northwest corner of Eighth and Chestnut streets, Reading, Pa., is one of the leading business men of this city. He was born at Reading, in 1851, a son of Abraham and Harriet (Dickinson) Yeager.

Abraham Yeager was one of the business men of Reading for years. For a long period he was a confectioner and later went into the plumbing business in partnership with his father-in-law William Dickinson, under the firm name of Dickinson & Yeager. The business was located on Sixth street near Penn street, Reading. Subsequently Mr. Yeager was associated with a Mr. Miller and the firm became Miller & Yeager and so continued until the latter's death, at the comparatively early age of thirty-seven years. He was laid to rest in Charles Evans cemetery. Mr. Yeager was survived by a widow and children. He married Harriet Dickinson, daughter of William P. and Elizabeth (Miller) Dickinson, the Miller family being a very old and prominent one at Reading. The children of this union were: William B., of this sketch; Edward, formerly mayor of the city of Reading; Harry; Pearson; Clara; and Alice, wife of Henry Heckman, of California.

William B. Yeager was educated in the schools of his native city, including the high school. His first acquaintance with business was as a clerk in the dry goods store of B. H. Brown, where he remained a short time, and then entered the Reading Sheet Mill Works, and for one year worked at piling scrap iron. His next business connection was with the firm of Delp & Rapp, with whom he was associated with two and a half years. In 1878 he went with W. T. Hain, working at the tinning trade, and remained with him for sixteen years. That long experience gave him a thorough understanding of his present line of work. During this period he spent some eighteen months in Schuylkill county, in the same business.

In 1887, Mr. Yeager engaged in business at his present site and has met with most encouraging success. The Reading Cornice Works include in their manufactures copper and iron cornices, crestings, hipping, and finals, roofing, spouting and heater work and sheet metal work of all kinds. His plant is well equipped with all manner of modern machinery and he gives employment to ten skilled workmen. On Jan 15, 1906, he received a patent right for a metal window sash and frame, and this device has met with a ready sale. Mr. Yeager visits neighboring towns in the interests of his business, and has friends all over the region.

Mr. Yeager was married to Susan Leitheiser, a daughter of Francis and Mary (Adams) Leitheiser, of Hyde Park, Reading. They have a daughter and son, Bessie and Harry, the latter of whom proves a very apt assistant to his father. In politics Mr. Yeager is a Republican. Fraternally he belongs to Chandler Lodge No. 227, F. & A. M., Excelsior Chapter, and Reading Commandery, and is a past officer of the Royal Arcanum. Mr. Yeager and family belong to the Lutheran Church. They have a pleasant home at No. 646 North Sixth street, Reading.


p. 1037


George W. Yeagley, of Reading, engaged in business as a painter, paper hanger and decorator, was born August 14, 1865, in Jefferson township, Berks county, son of William Yeagley, grandson of Samuel Yeagley, great-grandson of Mathias Yeagley, and a direct descendant of Baltzer Yeagley of Hereford township, Berks Co., Pennsylvania.

William Yeagley, his father, was a blacksmith and farmer in Jefferson township, where he died Dec. 19, 1899. He is buried at St. Paul's Church, Schaefferstown, that township, as is also his wife, whose maiden name was Salome Derr. They had children as follows: Morris, whose is living at Lebanon, Pa., Levi, of Philadelphia; James, of Myerstown, Lebanon Co., Pa; George W.; Alfred, who died at the age of thirty years; and Elizabeth, married to Howard S. Knoll.

George W. Yeagley attended the public schools of his native township and a graded school at Bernville taught by Prof. M. A. Gruber. He taught school two terms, one in Spring township and one in Tulpehocken, and then went to Lebanon, where he learned the trade of painter and paper hanger. He remained at that place five years, then went to Philadelphia for a year, and in 1892 settled in Reading, where he has since made his home. For nine years after coming to Reading he was in the employ of M. J. Earl, at the end of that time becoming a member of the firm of Kuebler, Yeagley & Co., located at No. 917 Penn street. He was interested in that business until 1906, since when he has been engaged in the same line on his own account, his establishment being at No. 1018 Chestnut street. He has a large patronage, gained by reliable work and honorable dealing. He is a member of Chandler Lodge. No. 227, F. & A. M.; Aerie No. 66, F. O. E.; Camp No. 663, P. O. S. of A., and other societies.

On June 26, 1890, Mr. Yeagley married Tamsey Miller, daughter of Joseph Miller, of Pottsville, Pa., and they have had three children: Harry G., born Oct. 17, 1891, now a member of the class of 1910, Reading high school; Alfred, born Nov. 13, 1894; and Helen, born April 23, 1897, who died Jan 15, 1898, and is buried in the Charles Evans cemetery, at Reading.


p. 1639


Dr. Isaac B. Yeakel, who is engaged in the practice of his profession at Bally, was born in Upper Hanover township, Montgomery county, Pa., July 6, 1840, a member of a family already residing in Pennsylvania for more than a hundred years.

David Yeakel came to Pennsylvania with the little band of Schwenkfelders in 1743. He was on the sick list when he arrived at Philadelphia, and no record of his death and no mention of his wife can be found. He was accompanied by six sons and two daughters, namely: Christopher; Abraham; Balthasar; Jeremias; Hans Heinrich; Caspar; Susanna (who married George Weigner) and Rosina.

Christopher Yeakel, son of David, married May 30, 1751, Rosina, widow of Christopher Seipt, and daughter of Balthasar Hoffman. She died June 14, 1788, aged seventy years, and he died July 1, 1800. Their children were: Jacob, born Jan 9, 1753; and Salome, born Oct. 24, 1762.

Jacob Yeakel, son of Christopher was born Jan 9, 1753. He became a farmer in Upper Hanover township, Montgomery county, where he died Feb. 17, 1819. He married, May 7, 1778, Susanna Schultz, daughter of Christopher Schultz, and she died June 28, 1829, aged seventy years. Their children were: Magdalena, born 1779, died 1828; Rosina, born July 4, 1780; Daniel, born 1781, died same year; Regina, born 1782, died 1783; Christopher; Andrew, born June 7, 1786; Carl, born June 21, 1788; Christina, born March 30, 1780; and Sarah, born Feb. 8, 1795.

Christopher Yeakel, son of Jacob, born Sept. 4, 1784, lived on the farm in Upper Hanover township now owned by his son Joseph B. On May 10, 1810, he married Elizabeth Yeakel, daughter of Caspar Yeakel, and she died Feb. 27, 1864, He passed away March 25, 1874. They were the parents of six children: Abigail, born Oct. 9, 1811; Samuel, Jan 27, 1813; Reuben, August 3, 1816; Joel, Nov 18, 1817; Deborah, March 24, 1821; and Joseph B., Dec. 10, 1823.

Samuel Yeakel, son of Christopher, was born in Upper Hanover township Jan. 27, 1813, died in 1842, on his farm, and is buried at Schwenkfelder's Meeting house at Kraussdale, of which he was a member. He was a farmer. He married Hannah Bertolet, daughter of Daniel and Maria (Griesemer) Bertolet, of Oley township, Berks county. She died in February, 1867, aged fifty years, and is buried at the side of her second husband, John Guldin, at Friedensburg. The only son born to Samuel and Hannah Yeakel was Dr. Isaac B.

Dr. Isaac B. Yeakel received his early education in the public schools and in Oley Academy, the latter in charge of Professors' Jacob H. Major and I. B. Hankey. He then taught school for seven terms--three in Oley, and four in Upper Milford township, Lehigh county. Determining to enter the professional world, he began the study of medicine with Dr. P. G. Bertolett, at Friedensburg, later attending the University of Pennsylvania, whence he graduated as an M. D. in 1866. He located for practice in what is now Bally, and has continued there to the present time, winning a large and lucrative practice that extended over a radius of twelve miles in the country. For seven years he rode in a high sulky through summer rains and winter snows, the sulky being a slight improvement over the horse back riding of Colonial days. The Doctor has witnessed many changes in his community, and has taken part in many of the movements tending toward progress. He is a tall man, five feet ten and one-half inches in height, and in his early days had jet black hair.

In his political faith the Doctor is a true Republican, and he served for nine years as a director of Schultzville Independent school, being secretary of the board during the entire time. He was local chairman of the party in Washington township for many years. Until 1888 he was a member of the Knights of Pythias at East Greenville. He and his family are members of the Niantic Reformed Church, and he has served as elder, deacon and trustee, always taking a great interest in religious affairs.

On Oct. 16, 1866, Dr. Yeakel was married to Maria K. Wieand, daughter of Charles and Susan (Krauss) Wieand, of Upper Milford township, Lehigh county. Four children, two sons and two daughters, were born to them: C. Frederick, a contractor and builder at Denver, Colo.; Hannah B., for seven years a public school teacher, and now living in Philadelphia; Susan, who married Frank Shreiber, of Shimerville, Lehigh county, and died in 1902; and Asher C., who married Lizzie Bender, of Reading, and died in 1900, aged twenty-six years.


p. 1642


Joseph B. Yeakel. Among the little band of religious people know as the Schwenkfelders, who came to America in 1734, was David Yeakel, who was on the sick list when the boat landed at Philadelphia. No record of his death can be found, nor does any mention of his wife appear. Apparently he was a widower, and he was accompanied by his six sons and two daughters: Christopher; Abraham; Balthaser; Jeremias; Hans Heinrich; Casper; Susanna (who married George Weigner) and Rosina.

Balthaser Yeakel, son of David, came over as above with his father in 1734. On Nov. 24, 1737, he married Barbara Warner, who died Feb. 25, 1808. He died Jan. 28, 1762. Their children were: Susanna (1739-1808), Anna, David (1744-1756), George (1746-1751), Casper and Rosina.

Casper Yeakel, son of Balthaser, was born in Pennsylvania Jan 6, 1748, and he married in 1775, Anna Yeakel, daughter of Christopher Yeakel. He died July 11, 1804, and his wife passed away May 11,1837. Their children were: Balthaser (1777-1778), Maria, Jeremiah, Esther, Regina, Elizabeth, Susanna, Abraham, Benjamin (1793-1796) and Anna.

Jeremiah Yeakel, son of Casper, was born August 11, 1781, and he lived to advanced old age. In 1806 he married (first) Lydia Krauss, daughter of Balthaser Krauss. She died Jan 19, 1812, survived by her husband and two sons, Daniel (1807-1813) and Benjamin. Jeremiah Yeakel married (second) Sarah Kriebel, daughter of the Rev. Melchior Kriebel.

Benjamin Yeakel, son of Jeremiah, was born Aug. 9, 1810, and his death occurred at Allentown Jan 12, 1871. He was a man of enterprising and inventive mind, and was financially successful. He built the first reaper in Pennsylvania, and this was used on the old Yeakel farm in Hereford township. It worked well, and its first practical test was witnessed by upwards of one hundred people. He was the owner of the farm now belonging to his son, Joseph B. In 1855 he moved from Hereford township to No. 319 Hamilton street, Allentown, where he built farm implements of all kinds and descriptions, employing about thirteen men in his shop in Hereford township, and a similar number in Allentown. He was a member of the Evangelical church, and is buried in the Union cemetery at Allentown, being the first man buried there. He married Catharine Elizabeth Brenner, who died Jan 20, 1875. Their children were: Solomon, deceased; Lydia E., deceased; Susan, of Allentown; Daniel, born 1844, and died the same year; Joseph B., of Allentown; and Simon, of Allentown.

Joseph B. Yeakel, son of Benjamin and Catharine Elizabeth (Brenner) Yeakel, was born on the old family homestead in Hereford township Sept. 7, 1845. He attended the common schools of the neighborhood for a few winters, and in 1855 his parents moved to Allentown, in which town he completed his education. He worked in his father's machine shop some years, and in 1871 he went to White Hall township, Lehigh county, where for thirty-five years he operated a farm of fifty-eight acres. In the spring of 1905 he came to Allentown, now residing in his comfortable home at No. 1321 Linden street. He owns the old Yeakel homestead in Hereford and Upper Hanover township (Montgomery county), consisting of 153 acres. The house now standing was built in 1851 by Benjamin and Catharine Elizabeth Yeakel, and is one of the largest private residences in the county, a part of it being three stories in height and the rest four stories high. It contains twenty-one large rooms. The barn was built in 1816 by Mr. Yeakel's grandfather Jeremiah Yeakel. His farm of a little over fifty acres in Whitehall township, Lehigh county, was sold for $50,000.

Mr. Yeakel is greatly interested in church work, and is a foremost member of Grace United Evangelical Church, Allentown, being one of its liberal supporters. During the erection of the present building, Mr. Yeakel subscribed $2,500, and also contributed $1,750 toward the pipe organ, Andrew Carnegie giving $1,000. He is a regular in his worship, and is a member of the Sunday-school.

In 1894, Mr. Yeakel made an extended tour of the West, remaining one week each at Salt Lake City, Garden of the Gods, Pike's Peak and Denver, traveling in California, where he remained for two months, spending nine days in the territory of New Mexico, and also visiting old Mexico. He had relatives in Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Nebraska and Kansas. These he visited and he frequently referred to his pleasure in meeting his mother's half-sisters and brothers, Mary, Lydia, Caroline (of Holton, Kans.), Sarah Wiest (of Morris, Ill.), Solomon (of Fort Wayne, Ind.) and Jesse Wiest (of Bluffton, Ind.). His aunt Mary, who lived at Bluffton, Ind., aged seventy-five, died three weeks after his visit, his remembrance of her and her kindness during his visit being a source of great pleasure.


p. 604


James M. Yerger, who was one of the county commissioners of Berks county from Jan 1, 1906 to Jan 1, 1909, was born in Upper Tulpehocken township, this county, June 22, 1860, son of William and Diana (Moll) Yerger.

Samuel Yerger, grandfather of James M., was a native of Berks county, born in Bern township. He was a farmer and stock raiser by occupation and was quite a prominent man in his day. Mr. Yerger married a Miss Nunemacher, and their children were: Joseph; John; Betsy, m. to Elias Spies; and William. In religious belief the family were Lutherans. Mr. Yerger was a Democrat.

William Yerger was educated in the common schools of Bern township, Berks county, and in his youth learned the carpenter's trade, at which, in conjunction with agricultural pursuits, he continued all his life. Mr. Yerger passed away in 1885, aged sixty-three years, and his wife Diana (Moll) passed away in 1860, when thirty-three years of age. These children were born to them: Cyrus; Elizabeth, m. to Henry Heffner, of Youngstown, Ohio; William; Amos; Amanda, deceased; Clarietta, m. to Franklin Seidel; Annetta, m. to Alfred Stoyer; and James M. Mr. Yerger's second marriage was to Theresa Himmelberger Ulrich, and to this union there were born three children; Wilson; Morris; and Catharine, deceased. Mr. Yerger was a Lutheran. He was a Democrat in his political views, and for some years held the office of school director.

James M. Yerger received his educational advantages in the schools of Centre township, and this was supplemented by an advance course at Keystone State Normal school at Kutztown, Pa. He taught school for seven terms and then engaged in the produce business, shipping to Reading and Philadelphia. After six years Mr. Yerger moved to Reading, being appointed during President Cleveland's second administration to the position of stamp clerk in the revenue office located in the post-office building in Reading. After leaving this position, Mr. Yerger was engaged for some time in the manufacture of cigars, disposing of this enterprise to enter the insurance field as agent for the Equitable and Prudential insurance companies, and in this latter capacity he continued successfully until his election to the office of county commissioner in the fall of 1905 on the Democratic ticket. Mr. Yerger took up his official duties Jan 1, 1906. He has been ever a faithful worker in the ranks of his party, and is considered one of the leaders thereof in this section. Mr. Yerger and his wife are members of the Lutheran Church. He is fraternally connected with Leesport Lodge, No. 141, I. O. O. F., St. John's Lodge No. 435, F. & A. M., of Reading, and of Centreport Lodge No. 446, P. O. S. of A., being a charter member of the latter.

Mr. Yerger was married Oct. 15, 1887, to Anna S. Kline, daughter of Samuel and Mary (Seaman) Kline; five children were born to this union, James K., William, Samuel, Mary and Earl, all deceased except for James K.


p. 1465


John Yerger, of Muhlenberg township, where he is the proprietor of a sausage factory, was born in Muhlenberg township, in 1852, son of John and Rebecca (Medler) Yerger.

George Yerger, the grandfather of John, made his home at Tenth and Court streets, Reading, and there his death occurred. Mr. Yerger married Catharine Bechtel, and among their children were two sons, George and John. John Yerger was born in 1814, and became one of the leading butchers of his day. His death occurred Feb. 28, 1872, at which time he left a widow and six children: Emma m. Mahlon Gehris, and had six children--John, Charles, Mahlon, William, Edwin and Elizabeth; John; Deborah m. John Bowman; George died single; William is single; Edwin m. Alice Hunnerbreich, and had eight children. The mother of John Yerger was married (second) in 1874, to Solomon Yoder, and still survives, living at Hyde Park.

John Yerger was educated in the schools of Muhlenberg township, and learned the butchering trade with his father, an occupation which he as followed ever since. In 1887 he established his present plant, where he manufactures all kinds of sausages, smoked meats, etc., His enterprise and business ability have built up a good trade, and his fair dealing in business matters have won for him a reputation for honesty and integrity. In politics Mr. Yerger is a Republican. He and his family are members of the Lutheran Church.

Mr. Yerger was married in 1874, to Ellen Wanner, daughter of Reuben Wanner, and to this union there have been born four children; Deborah m. John Kurtz, proprietor of the "Kurtz House" and has one child,--Mary A.; John R. m. Sallie Snyder and has one child,--John A.; Jennie R. is unmarried; and Roy A.


p. 1244


Charles M. Yetter, a prosperous young business man of Cumru township, engaged in the manufacture of cigars at Shillington, was born in Millway, Lancaster county, July 12, 1872, son of Michael and Louisa (Smith) Yetter.

Michael Yetter, who was born in Germany, was a miller by trade and emigrated to America when a young man of twenty-nine years. He settled at Millway, Lancaster county, and followed his trade until his death, in 1888, at the age of sixty-six years. His wife, who bore the maiden name of Louisa Smith, is still living, the mother of these children: Louisa, m. Harry Y. Yocum, who resides at Grill, Cumru township; Albert, a prominent cigar manufacturer of Lancaster county; and Charles M.

Charles M. Yetter attended the schools of Brecknock township, Lancaster county, and the Millersville State Normal school, after graduating from which latter institution he taught school for nine years, three terms in Lancaster county and six in Cumru township, where he became well and favorably known. He learned the cigar making business during the summer months, and engaged in business at Mohnton in 1901. There he continued until 1905, when he located at his present place, building a factory on Broad street, just off Wyomissing. It is a substantial three-story structure, 73 x 30 feet, with a fine cement cellar for storage, and having a capacity of 31,000 cigars daily; 130 workmen are employed. His goods are known and find a ready market from coast to coast, and include the following well known brands: "Walter Thomas," "Real Diamond," "John Mitchell," "Patriarch Club," and "Richard Webster." His factory is No. 71, and is in the first district. In political matters he is a Republican, and was one of the leaders in the movement to have Shillington become a borough. He is enterprising and energetic and although yet young in years is one of the most substantial men of his community. For some years Mr. Yetter has been vice-president of the Mohnton National Bank of Mohnton. His fine residence on Wyomissing avenue, which he erected in 1905, is one of the most modern in the locality. His religious belief is that of the Lutheran Church, which his wife also attends. He is fraternally connected with Reading Lodge, B. P. 0. E., No. 115, Aerie No. 66 of the Eagles, of Reading, and the Knights of Pythias, of Mohnton, Lodge No. 485.

Mr. Yetter married Emma Lessley, daughter of William Lessley, and they have two children, Earl F. and Myrtle Ruth.


p. 1160


Joseph Yetzer, a successful tin and sheet iron worker at Hyde Park., Pa., was born near Landis Store, Berks county, son of Joseph Sr., and Catharine (Kemp) Yetzer, the former a native of Switzerland, the latter of Berks county.

Joseph Yetzer, Sr., came to America and settled in the vicinity of Landis Store, working at his trade of tinsmithing. Later he purchased a small farm which he cultivated while still continuing his trade. In 1866, however, he sold his property, and removing to Reading, bought a residence on Walnut street, where he lived until 1870. He then disposed of it and bought the property at 105 South Ninth street. There he lived until 1885 when he died, aged sixty. His wife survived him until 1905, and was about eighty at the time of her demise. They had these children: Mary, now a sister of charity at Danville, Pa.; Emma, unmarried; John, who married Minerva Pauleus, and has three children-- Frank, Clara and William; and Joseph. In religious belief the entire family are Catholics. In politics Joseph Yetzer Sr., was a Democrat.

Joseph Yetzer, son of Joseph Yetzer, Sr., was educated in the schools of Reading, and learned his trade under his father. Mr. Yetzer has always been a tinsmith, and came to Hyde Park in 1898, where he has built up a flourishing business by the thoroughness of his work and his honorable business methods.

In 1886 Mr. Yetzer married Ella Boas, and their children are: Charles, Gertrude, Mary, Helen, Esther, Raymond, Arthur and Harold. Like the other members of the family, Mr. and Mrs. Yetzer are Catholics. In politics, Mr. Yetzer is a Democrat.

Last Modified Thursday, 16-Oct-2008 20:57:41 EDT

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