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to Davis' Adams family biography.
The Adams Family Among the
earliest members of the Adams family who emigrated to America were Henry Adams,
of Braintree, Massachusetts, and Robert Adams, of Oxford township,
Philadelphia county, and Walter Adams, his brother, all of whom it is
said were descended from Lord John Ap Adams, son of Ap Adams,
who came out of the Marches of Wales. Thomas Adams, brother
of Henry Adams, of Braintree, Massachusetts, was one of the grantees
named in the charter of Charles I, in 1629. He was high sheriff and lord mayor of London.
Henry Adams with his eight
sons settled at Mount Wollaston, in Braintree, and Walter and Robert Adams
were his brothers. It is thought, however, that they came to this country at a later date.
They settled in Pennsylvania and, like the majority of the early colonists of that state,
Walter was a Quaker.
The earliest record of the English branch
of the Adams family is that of John Ap Adams, of
Charlton Adams, in Somersetshire, who married Elizabeth, daughter and heiress to Lord Gowrney,
of Beviston and Tidenham county, Gloucester, who was summoned to parliament as baron of
the realm, 1226 to 1307. In the upper part of a Gothic window on the southeast side of
Tidenham church, near Chopston, the name of John Ap Adams is still to be
found, together with arms argent in a cross gules, five mullets or, of Lord Ap
Adams. The design is probably executed on stained glass of great
thickness and is in perfect preservation. This church originally stood within the boundary
of Wales, but at a later period the boundary line was changed so that it is now upon
English soil. The arms and crest borne by the family are described as argent in a cross
gules; five mullets or, out of a ducal coronet a demi-lion. The legend is Loyal au
mort; a motto commonly used by this branch of the family is "Aspire, persevere
and indulgence, all other sub cruce veritas.
The following is the line of direct
descent to the Adams family of the Lehigh Valley.
(1).Ap Adams came out of
the Marches of Wales. Lords of the Marches were noblemen who in the early ages secured and
inhabited the Marches of Wales and Scotland, living there as if they were petty kings,
having their own private laws. These laws, however, were subsequently abolished.
(2) Sir Ap Adams,
knight, lord of Ap Adams, married Elizabeth, daughter of Lord Gowrney.
(3) Sir Thomas Ap Adam;
(4) William Ap Adam;
(5) Sir John Ap Adam;
(6) Thomas Ap Adams;
(7) Sir John Ap Adam,
(8) Sir John Ap Adam,
who was the first to attach the letter s to his name;
(9) Roger Adams;
(10) Thomas Adams;
(11) John Adams;
(12) John Adams;
(13) Nicholas Adams;
(14) Richard Adams;
(15) William Adams;
and (16) Henry Adams,
who is said to have emigrated about 1634. In February, 1641, he was granted forty acres of
land near Boston, of which Braintree is a part. His brothers were Robert, Thomas and
Walter. The last named came to America by way of the Barbadoes, West Indies, and after
living there for a time took up his abode in Pennsylvania.
(1) Walter Adams married
Elizabeth _____. Their children were: Richard, Anne, William, and Robert. Walter
Adams was the brother of Robert Adams, of Oxford township,
Philadelphia, who died in 1719, leaving no children; he devised the estate of his nephews
and nieces, the children of his brother Walter and Elizabeth, his wife.
(2) Richard Adams, of
New Providence township, now Montgomery county, Pennsylvania, died in 1748. His first
wifes name is not known. His second wife was Alice or Aishe Withers,
and they were married in 1726. His children were as follows: Abraham, married Alse _____;
William, of Braken township, Lancaster county; Isaac, of Coventry township, Chester
county; Susanna, married Conrad Custard, or Kistard;
Catharine, married John Morris; Mary, married Israel Morris;
Margaret, married Paul Casselberry; Elizabeth, married Thomas Bull;
Ann, married Jacob Umstadt; Hannah, married Owen Evans.
(3) Abraham Adams died
in 1738, and letters were granted to Rachel, his daughter, a spinster. There is mention of
two children, Ann and Abigail.
Walter Adams and his
brother were brothers of Henry Adams, who came to New England and was a
founder of the Adams family there, at Braintree, Massachusetts. Walter,
his Son Richard, and his son Abraham were Quakers.
Conrad Custard, husband
of Susanna Adams, (daughter of Richard), owned a large tract of land
immediately adjoining the tract surveyed to Ensign John Adams, of
Nockamixon township, in 1763.
John Adams and James Adams,
possibly and probably brothers, lived in Nockamixon township, Bucks county. There are a
few records at Doylestown, Pennsylvania, which bear James Adamss
signature. He was also an ensign in the provincial service, Associated Companies of Bucks
county, in 1747. (See Colonial Records, vol. v., p. 209; also Pennsylvania Archives,
second series, vol. ii, p. 505). This was nine years before John Adams
held a like commission in the provincial service in the Associated Companies of Bucks
county. There is nothing to establish that James Adams and John Adams
were related, neither can be found any data of their former residence or whose children
they were. The only solution is that they were both possibly sons of Abraham Adams;
the latter having died intestate no list of his children is obtainable. The fact that John
Adams held land adjoining that of Conrad Custer is a
possible solution, he having been raised by his aunt Susanna.
Richard Adams, of
Providence township, Philadelphia, whose will is dated February 1, 1847-8, and probated
March 24, 1747-48, mentions son Abrahams children, Ann and Abagail, then letters
were granted to Abrahams daughter Rachel. There at once seems to be some discrepancy
which is most difficult to explain.
James commission in the provincial
service, as above stated, was dated in 1747, which tends to show that he might have been
disinherited by his grandfather. Then, again, there is a possibility that James and John Adams
are one and the same man, but this is very doubtful, as their names are mentioned
distinctly and separately in the old records.
(1) John Adams, ensign,
Provincial Service, of Nockamixon township, Bucks county, Pennsylvania, died in Nockamixon
township, May 22, 1807. He married Mary _____. He was buried in the old Nockamixon church
graveyard His will dated March 21, 1807, proved June 8, same year, is recorded in Will
Book No 7, p. 278, in the register of wills office, Doylestown, Pennsylvania.
John Adams, of
Nockamixon, served in the provincial service in 1756. He held a commission as ensign in
one of the companies of the Associated Companies of Bucks county. (See Pennsylvania
Archives, vol iii., p. 19; also Pennsylvania Archives, second series, vol. ii. p. 531).
Captain William Ramsey was captain of the company in which John
Adams served and held his commission as ensign in 1756, and was also from
Nockamixon township, Bucks county. John Johnson was the lieutenant of the
company. John Adams of Nockamixon, and Mary his wife, had the following
children: Mary, Elizabeth, Margaret, George, Henry, John Jacob.
George and Henry, sons of John Adams
of Nockamixon, served in the Nockamixon Company of Associators in 1775. George
was sergeant of the company, and the son, John was a soldier in the Continental army
during the Revolutionary war.
The first record that we have of John Adams
of Nockamixon owning any land is a warrant that was granted March 26, 1754, to John
Adams, for land in Nockamixon township, Bucks county, upon which a survey was
returned for fifty-four acres and 113 perches. A patent for this same land was granted
April 26, 1726, to Abraham Fryling. John Adams had some
trouble with this land, for on May 19, 1763, he entered a caveat against the acceptance of
a survey made for Archibald Merrin, which took in the above mentioned
land and improvements. (See Pennsylvania Archives, third series, vol. ii., p. 275) The
above land was surveyed by J. Hart, for which he gave a receipt, June 26,
1763, which is recorded in Doylestown, Pennsylvania, in Deed Book No. 32, p. 169. This
receipt also mentions the date of the warrant, March 26, 1754.
(II) John Adams, private
in Captain Samuel Watsons company, of Durham township, Bucks
county, Pennsylvania, was a son of John Adams of Nockamixon township,
Bucks county, Pennsylvania, born in Nockamixon township, November 3, 1759, died in Durham
township, November 12, 1826. He married Christina Klinker, December 15,
1789, at the Tohickon German Reformed church. Some time after the Revolutionary war he
moved into Durham township, where he lived until his death. He is buried in the old Durham
church graveyard. Christina Klinker, the wife of John Adams,
of Durham, was born in Nockamixon township August 15, 1770, died in Durham township
October 2, 1847, and is buried in the old Durham church graveyard. She was the daughter of
John and Mary Klinker of Nockamixon township, Bucks county, Pennsylvania.
John Adams, of Durham
township, Bucks county, Pennsylvania, was a soldier in the Continental army during the
Revolutionary war. He served as a private in Captain Samuel Watsons
company of the Second Pennsylvania Battalion under Colonel Arthur St. Clair. He
enlisted February 12, 1776. (See Pennsylvania Archives, second series, vol. x, p. 98).
Several of the members of his company were from upper Bucks county. Captain Watson
died at Three Rivers and was succeeded by Thomas L. Moore, who was
promoted to major of the Ninth Regiment, May 12, 1779, and was succeeded as captain by
John Henderson. The company was transferred or became a part of the Third
Battalion, Twelfth Regiment, July 1, 1778, and thus became associated with other companies
of Bucks county. For his services he received from the state of Pennsylvania two hundred
acres of donation land in Robinson township, Westmoreland county,
Pennsylvania, which was returned for patent October 9, 1786. (See Pennsylvania Archives,
third series, vol. vii, p. 723). This land he sold to Hugh Hamill,
November 4, 1786, for £37 10s. The witnesses to this deed were Thomas Delap
(Dunlap), John Donnell and Jacob Glassmyer, all
residents of Nockamixon township at that date. (Recorders office, Philadelphia,
Pennsylvania, deed book D-17, p. 322.) John K., son of John Adams of
Durham, was a soldier for some time during the war of 1812-1814, private in Captain John Dornblasers
company (Pennsylvania Archives, second series, vol. xii, p. 105).
John Adams of Durham and
Christina, his wife, had the following children: Elizabeth, Mary, Margaret, John K.,
Henry, Jacob, Samuel, Susan, married Joseph Retschlin, and Daniel.
John Adams of Durham was
quite a large land owner. In 1706 he owned one hundred acres of land and a grist and a saw
mill in Nockamixon township, Bucks county, Pennsylvania. April 20, 1799, he bought of
Solomon Lightcap 263 acres of land. (Bucks county deed book 30, p.310). April 11, 1808, he
bought two tracts, one of 155 acres and the other of twelve acres. (Bucks county deed book
39, p.135). John Adams of Durham died without making a will. It is
impossible to give the date when John Adams was mustered out of the service, for the
muster rolls of the Twelfth Regiment have practically never been found.
Tax lists of Nockamixon township show the
holdings of John Adams, the father of the above John Adams,
and his sons George and Henry, elder brothers of John. John Adams appears
as a single man first in the year of 1785, notwithstanding that he was of age
in 1780. He therefore served, in all probability, up to about that date (1784-1785) in the
Twelfth Pennsylvania regiment. Captain Samuel Watsons company
records date to November 25, 1776, only.
(III) Henry Adams, of
Durham township, Bucks county, Pennsylvania, son of John Adams, was born
in Durham township June 17, 1806, and died there December 15, 1838. He married Elizabeth Bitz,
August 25, 1828, at her home in Springfield township, Bucks county, Pennsylvania. He is
buried in the old Durham church graveyard. Elizabeth Bitz, the wife of
Henry Adams, of Durham, was born September 18, 1811, in Springfield
township, Bucks county, Pennsylvania, and died March 28, 1878, in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania.
She was the daughter of John Bitz and Susan Riegel, his wife, of
Springfield, Bucks county, Pennsylvania. Henry Adamss will is recorded in
Doylestown, Pennsylvania. It is dated April 28, 1838, and is proved December 22, 1838.
Henry Adams of Durham and Elizabeth, his wife, had the following
children: John, Hannah, Catharine and Samuel. After the death of Henry Adams
in 1840, Elizabeth Bitz was married a second time to Christian Nicholas.
She had no children by this union. Christian K. Nicholas was born in
Nockamixon township, Bucks county, Pennsylvania, January 23, 1817, and died in upper
Saucon township, Lehigh county, Pennsylvania, November 3, 1893, and was buried in
Friedensville November 7, 1893, and body removed to Nisky Hill Cemetery, Bethlehem,
December 16, 1899.
(IV) Samuel Adams of
south Bethlehem, Northampton county, Pennsylvania, son of Henry Adams of
Durham township, Bucks county, Pennsylvania, was born in Durham township July 25, 1837,
and died in South Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, February 22, 1902. He married Susie Weaver,
September 14, 1865, at her home in Allentown, Pennsylvania. He is buried at Nisky Hill
Cemetery, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. Susie Weaver, wife of Samuel Adams,
was born in Allentown, Pennsylvania, May 5, 1847. She was a daughter of Joseph Weaver
and Salome, his wife, of Allentown, Pennsylvania. Samuel Adams and Susie
Weaver, his wife, had the following children: John, Joseph W., Henry and Susie.
Samuel Adams when quite
a young man started out in farming, and then in iron ore mining. He entered the employ of
the Thomas Iron Company of Catasaqua, Pennsylvania, and was given charge of their mining
interests. Mr. John Fritz induced him to come to Bethlehem and accept the
position as his assistant in the Bethlehem Iron Company. Here he remained for nearly
thirty years, and then had to resign on account of his health. He then organized the
Ponupo Mining and Transportation Company, Limited, and went to Santiago de Cuba as general
manager of the company. Here he bought a railroad for the company, the Ferro-Carril de
Santiago de Cuba, and became its president, and also built an extension to the railroad to
connect with the companys manganese mines. He remained in Cuba with his family for
over two years, when he resigned and returned north. He was in Cuba part of the year 1892,
all of 1893, and part of 1894. After returning from Cuba he assisted in forming the
Sheffield Coal, Iron and Steel Company of Sheffield, Alabama. He stayed in Sheffield with
his family one year, then sold out his interest and came north. While with the Sheffield
Coal, Iron and Steel Company he held the position of general superintendent and assistant
treasurer, and also director of the company. He then retired from active business and
devoted himself to farming, having a tract of one hundred acres near Friedensville,
Pennsylvania, about 130 acres above Bingen, Pennsylvania, and a tract of woodland along
the P. & R. of forty acres, above Bingen, Pennsylvania. He was also interested in and
a director of the following companies at the time of his death: Ponupo Mining and
Transportation Company, Cuban Mining Company, Jones and Bixler Manufacturing Company,
South Bethlehem National Bank.
Henry, son of Samuel Adams,
was a soldier during the Spanish-American war of 1898. He organized the first volunteer
company in the state. He and his company were taken into the Ninth Pennsylvania Regiment
to help make up the Third Battalion of that regiment. He was commissioned as captain of
Company K, Ninth Pennsylvania Regiment, United States Volunteer Infantry. The regiment was
in the Third Brigade, Third Division, First Army Corps.
(V.) Joseph W. Adams, of
South Bethlehem, Northampton county, Pennsylvania, son of Samuel Adams, was born in
Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, January 19, 1872. He married Reba Thomas, of
Pittsburg, Pennsylvania, daughter of David J Thomas and Susanna
Edwards, of Pittsburg, June 14, 1899, at her home. Reba Thomas,
the wife of Joseph W. Adams, was born in Pittsburg, November 11, 1877.
Joseph W. Adams was
educated at the Moravian parochial school of Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, the Hill school of
Pottstown, Pennsylvania, and the Lehigh University of South Pennsylvania, where he joined
the Delta Upsilon fraternity. He started to work in the drawing rooms of the Bethlehem
Iron Company. He went to Cuba with his father and was treasurer of the Ferro-Carril de
Santiago de Cuba, 1892-93. He went to Alabama as assistant to the general superintendent
of the Sheffield Coal, Iron and Steel Company in 1895, and part of 1896. He returned home
and took up his studies again at Lehigh University in metallurgy and mineralogy, and then
read law for over a year. In 1899 he and his brother Henry formed the Cuban Mining
Company, and he was elected secretary and treasurer of the company and also a director. He
is connected with the following companies: Director and vice-president of the South
Bethlehem National Bank; director and president of La Paz Mining Company; director,
secretary and treasurer of the Cuban Mining Company; director and executive committee of
Delaware Forge and Steel Company; director and committee of Guerber Engineering Company;
director of Lehigh Valley Cold Storage Company; director, secretary and treasurer of the
Roepper Mining Company; director of Valentine Fibre Ware Company; acting trustee of the
estate of Samuel Adams. He is a member of the following clubs and societies: Society of
Colonial Wars in the State of New York; Empire State Society; Sons of the American
Revolution; Pennsylvania Society of Sons of the Revolution; Pennsylvania German Society,
and the local town and country clubs; and of Masonic bodiesBethlehem Lodge,
Zinzendorf Chapter, Bethlehem Council, Allen Commandery, Caldwell Consistory, and Rajah
Temple. He is captain of commissary, Fourth Regiment Infantry, N. G. P. His children were:
John, born January 23, 1901; David Samuel, born March 15, 1903.
Henry Adams, captain of
Company K, Ninth Pennsylvania Regiment, U. S. V. I., son of Samuel Adams,
of South Bethlehem, Northampton county, Pennsylvania, was born in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania,
November 2, 1873. He married Annette Talbot Belcher, of New London,
Connecticut, July 9, 1902
Henry Adams, mining
engineer, was educated at the Moravian parochial day school of Bethlehem, Pennsylvania,
the Hill school of Pottstown, Pennsylvania, and the Lehigh University of South Bethlehem,
Pennsylvania, where he joined the Delta Upsilon fraternity. He started to work with Thomas
Edison at Edison, N. J. He went to Cuba and was assistant superintendent
and then superintendent of the Ferro-Carril de Santiago de Cuba. He went south to Alabama
and was in charge of the coal and coke department of the Sheffield Coal, Iron and Steel
Company at Jasper, Alabama. He went to Mexico and erected an electric light plant for the
Mexican National Railroad, and then was supervisor of a division of that road. He resigned
and was made constructing engineer for Tumer Nunn & Company of Mexico, Mexico, with
headquarters in Pueblo. In December of 1897 and January of 1898 he was in Cuba in the city
of Santiago and the surrounding country, and visited the insurgents several times.
When war broke out with Spain in 1898 he
raised the first company of volunteers in the state, with the assistance of Colonel Wilson
and Captain Juett of Bethlehem. He and his company were mustered into the
United States service, and he received his commission as captain of volunteers on July 6,
1898. His company was attached to the Ninth Pennsylvania Regiment, United States Volunteer
Infantry, as Company K, to help complete the Third Battalion. The regiment was in the
Third Division, Third Brigade, First Army Corps. Company K, of the Ninth Pennsylvania
Regiment of the United State Volunteer Infantry, is thus mentioned in the Record of
Events which may be Necessary or Useful for Future Reference at the War Department.
This company was organized in July
at South Bethlehem, and mustered in at South Bethlehem, July 6, 1898, which company left
by rail for Chickamauga Park, July 7, 1898, arriving in camp July 19, 1898. Remained in
camp until August 26, 1898, when company left by rail for Camp Hamilton, Lexington,
Kentucky, arriving in camp August 28, 1898. Left Camp Hamilton for regimental headquarters
at Wilkesbarre, September 17, 1898, arriving there September 19, 1898. Company left by
rail for home station, September 20, 1898, arriving same day, when company was verbally
furloughed for thirty days.
The above is taken from the muster-out
roll of the company. The company was mustered into service on the 6th day of
July, 1898, and was mustered out of the service on the 29th day of October,
1898. It was the first volunteer company formed in the state of Pennsylvania, and was
taken to help fill out the Third Battalion of the Ninth Pennsylvania Regiment. The other
companies were Captain Greens, of Reading; Captain Mercers,
of Summit Hill, above Mauch Chunk; and Captain Moors, of Towanda.
On Friday evening, April 22, 1898, there
was a meeting held in the Fountain Hill Opera House, and a call for volunteers made. These
met in Doxons Hall afterward and elected Henry Adams, captain;
Leighton N. D. Mixsell, first lieutenant; and Dick Enright,
second lieutenant. Mr. Enright failed to pass his physical examination
and was re-elected. A. Alison Mitchell, of Wilkesbarre, was appointed in
his place. The South Bethlehem Market Hall was used as an Armory by the company.
Henry Adams is a member
of the Pennsylvania German Society, 1899; a member of the Society of Foreign Wars,
Pennsylvania Commandery, 1899; general manager of the Cuban Mining Company at Neuvitas,
Cuba, 1899-1902, and the mines of this company were discovered by him; a member of the
Empire State Society of the Sons of the American Revolution, and was presented a medal of
honor by the society for service in the Spanish-American war; and of Masonic
bodiesFernwood Lodge, No. 543, Philadelphia, and Caldwell Consistory, 32d degree. He
was vice president and general manager of the San Domingo Exploration Company and San
Domingo Southern Railway Company, San Domingo, R. D., West Indies, 1902.
Text taken from pages 77-81 of:
Davis, William W. H., A.M., History
of BucksCounty, Pennsylvania [New York-Chicago: the Lewis Publishing Company, 1905] volume
Transcribed June 2000 by Earl Goodman of
PA as part of the Bucks Co., Pa., Early Family Project, www.rootsweb.com/~pabucks/bucksindex.html
Published July 2000 on the Bucks County,
Pa., USGenWeb pages at www.rootsweb.com/~pabucks/