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View Tree for Bishop Hans HerrBishop Hans Herr (b. 17 September 1639, d. 11 October 1725)

Hans Herr (son of Hans Johan Kristen Herr and Catharina Hass) was born 17 September 1639 in Aurgau, Bader, Germany, and died 11 October 1725 in Willow Street, Lampeter Township, Lancaster Co., Pennsylvania. He married Elizabeth Mylin Kendig on 1660 in Sundt Gallen, Zurich, Switzerland, daughter of John Jacob Kendig and Jane Meylin.

 Includes NotesNotes for Hans Herr:
Details of the Herr migration from Switzerland to Germany to Lancaster and be found in the book, A Modest Mennonite Home by Steve Friesen. Book is about the Hans Herr House, the family and gives info on their journey to PA as well as other families accompanying them.


Recently saw a website on PA history regarding the 1719 Hans Herr Haus. Info on this site says the Mennonites left Switz. and move into the German Palatinate after the Thirty Years War. After a harsh winter in 1709, 27 Mennonites led by Hans Herr went to PA. By 1719 fifty families had moved to the Lancaster Co. area.


The Pequea Creek settlers led by Hans Herr left Gravesend, England June 29,1710 on the ship "Mary Hope", Capt. John Armis, and arrived in Philadelphia, Pa. on September 23, 1710


Location: Willow Street, Pennsylvania | Category: Historic Houses
Hans Herr House

Built in 1719, this is purportedly the oldest building in Lancaster County and the oldest documented Mennonite meetinghouse in America. The medieval-style Germanic stone house has been depicted in several paintings by Andrew Wyeth, a descendant of Hans Herr. The site includes the restored and furnished house, an exhibit about Mennonite farm life, a blacksmith shop, picnic tables, an orchard and a visitor center. Open Monday-Saturday 9am-4pm, April-November; closed Thanksgiving.

Hans Herr House
The door of the Hans Herr House, which is the oldest house in Lancaster County. Christian Herr, the oldest son of Hans built it in 1719. Linda is a 10th generation descendent of Christian. Have a picture.


TITL Lineage and Family Record of Descendants of Reverend Hans Herr Theodore Herr, Lineage and Family Record of Descendants of Reverend Hans Herr. (Lancaster, PA.: 1901) _FA2 DATE OCT 1725 PLAC Buried at Willow Street, Mennonite Cemetary, Lancaster, PA IMMI DATE 29 APR 1710 PLAC Sailed from Gravesend, England on the Ship Mary Hope Mastered by John Annis IMMI DATE 1670 PLAC To Palatine Germany IMMI DATE SEP 1710 PLAC Landed in Philadelphia, PAID: I01606 Name: Hans Heer Herr Sex: M Birth: 17 SEP 1639 in Sankt Gallen, Zurich, Switzerland or Aargau, Baden, Switzerland Birth: 17 SEP 1639 Death: 11 OCT 1725 in Lampeter, Lancaster Co., Pennsylvannia Occupation: Reverend Note: Immigrated to America. Father: Hans Herr b: 1608 in Bern, Switzerland or Zurich, Zurich Canton, Switzerland Mother: Unknown b: 1615 in Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland Marriage 1 Elizabeth Mylin Kendig b: 1 MAY 1639 in Emmenthal, Zurich, Switzerland or Aargau, Baden Switzerland Married: 1660 in Sankt Gallen, Zurich, Switzerland or Aargau, Baden, Switz Children Abraham Herr b: 1660 in Near, Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland Christian Herr b: ABT. 1662 in Of, Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland Maria Herr b: 1673 in Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland John Herr b: 1685 in Near, Zurich, Zurich, Switzerland Samuel Herr b: 1686 in Letort, Pennsylvania or Zurich, Switzerland Emanuel Hare b: 1689 in Wheatland Mills, Lancaster Co., PA or Zurich, Switzerland Isaac Hare b: 1690 in Martick Twp., Lancaster Co., Pennsylvania Henry Hare b: 1690 in New Providence, Twp., Lancaster Co., Pennsylvania Information Source: O.F. Harr Family Record. In 1709 Hans and seven other Mennonites bought 10,000 acres of land in Pennslyvania from William Penn. Sailed from Gravesend, England in April 29, 1710. Landed in Philadelphia, in Sept 1710. Name of the ship : Mary Hope, Mastered by John Annis. Bishop Hans Herr: Is described as "of medium height, with long grey hair curled under at the ends and parted in the middle, ...heavy brows, dark hazel eyes, aqualine nose, small mouth with heavy lips, complexion florid, with full beard covering face, the whole lighted by a countenancein wich sweetness and austerity were gracefully blended. Clad in coursest homespun, his feet shod with wood, he at last arrived in the far off land in wich some strange prophecy told him his people would be prosperous and happy, however poor when arriving. ( C.H. Martin, paper read before the Lancaster county Historical society, 1925.) Baptism (LDS): LIVE Record Change: July 28, 1999 Notes for Herr family: Information Source Mary A. Hartman The family of Herr descended from a very ancient free family, that is to say of noble origin; likewise from time immorial its Knights were brave and worthy. Possessing in Schaben vasat and rich estates, the name of which was called and written (Herr(n) von Bilried. The father or founder of this family was known as the Schwabish knight Hugo the Herr, Lord of Bilried. In the year 1009, this family flourished and was known to all among the Southern Germanic tribes. In the fifteenth century several of the family resigned their nobility due to changing religious beliefs and settled as citizens and assumed the name of Herr (a title of respect in Germany). -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- 1719 HANS HERR HAUS Descriptive narrative provided by the tour center at the site. In 1710 a group of 27 Mennonites, led bv the elderly Hans Herr, left the Palatinate for the New World. Swiss in origin, they had left Zurich canton in the latter 1600s because of persecution. They moved to Palatinate because Karl Ludwig had invited them to help rebuild the area, devastated by the Thirty Years liar. Even in the Palatinate they experienced restrictions: they could only worship in small groups in private homes, they could admit no one from other denominations to their meetings and were not t o re-baptize people who had already been baptized, they were also restricted in land ownership and had to pay special taxes. But they endured these restrictions, as well as several attacks on the Palatinate by Louis XIV. Then in 1709 a severe winter was followed by a famine Finally the Mennonites decided it was time to move. The group led by Hans Herr left the Sinsheim area as an advance group. If they liked the colony of Pennsylvania they would send for their friends and relatives. Arriving in Philadelph ia, the group decided they would purchase their on the western frontier of the colony. They followed an Indian trail into the forest and becwne the first white settlers of Lancaster County. Their first homes T,,ere built of the logs left when they cleared the forest for their fields. They sent for family members who stayed in Germany and by 1719 the settlement had groi4n to over 50 families. In that year Christian Herr built"the first stone house in the community. It reflected his Germanic background, hav ing a stube, k-8che, eck bank, kachelofen, and other features typical of homes in the Palatinate and Switzerland. Christian, his wife, seven children, his eighty-year old father Hans (after whom the museum is named), and his mother Elizabeth all lived in the house. Since both Christian and Hans were ministers, the house also served as, a place for worship services. Mennonite church in America. Today it is the oldest remaining The datestone over the door is original to the house and bears Christian's initi als and the date. The s-shaped symbol over the I of 1719 was used to indicate Anno Domini or A.D. The Herr house has been restored and furnished to show the period of 1719 to 1750. The kilche has a very large fireplace which is located in the center of the house. The f ireplace itself was not used for heat but provided access to the kachelofen, which warmed the stube. Unlike the English settlers, who used a large fire in the fireplace for heating and cooking, the German settlers used the oven for heating and used only small fires for cooking. a hearth raised around two feet above the floor level. The fires were built on This kind of hearth was much more convenient and safer than the English colonials' floor level hearths. The wooden fire crane in the fireplace is original and was used to hold pots over the fires. There is a local story that one night the Herrs had a hunting party of Indians take refuge in their kitchen in front of the fireplace. Lancaster County was settled peaceably and the Mennonites go t along well with the local Conestoga Indians. The house has a root cellar, where they stored turnips, cabbages, apples, onions, smoked meats, and apple cider. Cider was the main drink of the early settlers. Apples were so important that many farms had as many as 150 apple trees. They did not eat potatoes in the early 18th century because they thought potatoes were poisonous The small room next to the kitchen was used for storage of food items and tools. Nearly every room of the house provided storage spa ce, since the house was the only building on the farm. One Pennsylvania German farmer near here kept a horse collar and harness, a crosscut saw, and old lumber in his bedroom. The stube is located behind the kitchen f ireplace. Because of the kaohelofen it was the warmest room in the house and the center of family Elderly members of the family sometimes slept in the stube; we think- this is where Hans and his wife Elizabeth slept. In this house the stube also acted as the place of worship. Here the members of the Mennonite community gathered every second or third Sunday. Today all Mennonite groups meet in church buildings but the Amish continue to meet in homes for worship. The minister did not preach from a pulpit but used a simple table. On the table are Christian Herr's family Bible, two Ausbunds, and a Martyrs' Mirror. The Martyrs' Mirror is a book containing many stories about the Anabaptist martyrs during the time of the Reformation. The predecessors of the Mennonites, the Anabaptists were the radicals of the Reformation. Among their most radical ideas were belief in adult baptism on a basis of a statement of faith (which resulted in the nickname "Anabaptist," which meant "re-baptizer. ), separation of church and state, and a commitment to nonviolence. The Mennonites are named after Menno Simons, one of the leaders of the Anabaptists. Literally thousands of Anabaptists were thrown in prison, tortured, and killed because of their radical beliefs. Martyrs' Mirror. Their stories are in the The Ausbund is a hyim book. The first Ausbund was printed in 1564 Keith songs which were sung by the Anabaptists while in prison. The Ausbund is still in print and is used by the Amish in their services. It is the oldest Protestant hymn book that has been in continuous use until today, Christian Herr's Bible was printed in 1738 in Basle. He must purchased it on one of his trips back to Philadelphia to sell flour. The journey to Philadelphia took around two days in good weather. When Christian died in 1750, the Bible was part of an inventory done of his possessions. At that time it was worth the same amount of money as two cows. The strange object standing on the table near the books is a rush light. These used the stem of a bullrush or cattail which had been soaked in fat or grease. When lit they provided a flame. free while Candles were quite expensive. Although smoky and smelly, they were The kammer was the master bedroom for Christian and his wife Anna. They slept on a rope bed, with a straw mattress, and a feather bed on top for warmth. The Germans used feather beds and the Fnglish used wool blankets. In that room is a chest which was. used by a German family that emigrated to Lancaster County in 1737. In order to identify their trunk once they got to Philadelphia, they put a label inside the lid with their four names and the date of 1737. The label has remained inside the lid for over 2 50 years. immigration by a family of four, It proves the trunk was used for In the early years after arrival, the Mennonite settlers had very little furniture. Often the chest they used for immigration was the largest item of furniture in their house. But they prospered and by 1750 many had schranks for their clothing. However the schrank itself was not so valuable as the clothing that was kept in it. 1750. This piece of furniture was made in Lancaster County around The plaster has been left off part of the ceiling in this room to show the insulation used: pieces of wood wrapped with rye straw. This was a tradition brought from Germany and does a good job of ins ulating the house. The rye straw was used because it was bitter to rats and mice and they would not chew on it. The children slept in the first attic, which also served as a storage area. The second attic above it was just for storage. The steps used to go to the second attic are original and very unique, each is cut from a section of log. The second attic was heated by an iron five-plate stove, fed by a small fireplace. Hot coals from the fire were put in the stove, which radiated heat into the attic. The children would have slept on beds similar to that of their parents, probably as many as three or four shared a bed. Despite the stove it still got quite cold in the attic during the winter because there was no insulation. Even though there appear to be gaps between the shingles, the roof is watertight. sidelap as well as an overlap. The r oof shingles are quite long and have a Some of the tools used to build houses like the 1719 Herr House are located in the attic. These include broadaxe, used for heviing logs into beams, and a froe, used to split shingles. After splitting a shingle it was shaved down using a schnitzelbank-, which held the shingles in place for working. Following your tour of the 1719 Herr House, you are welcome to browse around the museum grounds. Be sure to visit "Faith and Furrow, Mennonite rural life, in the long white barn by the millstones. our exhibit on A gift shop and restrooms are located in the white farmhouse which serves as our visitors center.



In 1709 Hans and seven other Mennonites bought 10,000 acres of land in Pennslyvania from William Penn. They sailed from Gravesend, England in April 29, 1710, landed in Philadelphia, in Sept 1710. Name of the ship : Mary Hope, Mastered by John Annis.

Bishop Hans Herr:

Is described as "of medium height, with long grey hair curled under at the ends and parted in the middle, ...heavy brows, dark hazel eyes, aqualine nose, small mouth with heavy lips, complexion florid, with full beard covering face, the whole lighted by a countenancein wich sweetness and austerity were
gracefully blended. Clad in coursest homespun, his feet shod with wood, he at last arrived in the far off land in wich some strange prophecy told him his people would be prosperous and happy, however poor when arriving.

The family of Herr descended from a very ancient free family, that is to say of noble origin; likewise from time immorial its Knights were brave and worthy. Possessing in Schaben vasat and rich estates, the name of which was called and written (Herr(n) von Bilried.
The father or founder of this family was known as the Schwabish knight Hugo the Herr, Lord of Bilried. In the year 1009, this family flourished and was known to all among the Southern Germanic tribes. In the fifteenth century several of the family resigned their nobility due to changing religious beliefs and settled as citizens and assumed the name of Herr (a title of respect in Germany).




More About Hans Herr:
Burial: Unknown, Willow Street Cemetary, Lampeter Township, Lancaster Co., Pennsylvania.
Immigration: 1710, To Pennsylvania.41
Occupation: Mennonite Minister.

More About Hans Herr and Elizabeth Mylin Kendig:
Marriage: 1660, Sundt Gallen, Zurich, Switzerland.

Children of Hans Herr and Elizabeth Mylin Kendig are:
  1. +Abraham Herr, b. 1660, Zurich Switzerland, d. 1725, Conesoga Twp, Lancaster, Pa.
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