Added December 2020
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Hanss Seip lived the mid-1650s east of Heidelberg, Germany. (1)
Married Anna Catharina.
Child: Georg Kilian Seip, baptized Dec. 7, 1654. (2)
Hans lived in or near the town of Eberbach when his son was baptized in 1654. Eberbach is a few miles east of Heidelberg in the German state of Baden-Wuerttemberg.
In later records, Hans is listed as a “Gemeinsmann zu Igelsbach bei Eberbach.” As a Gemeinsmann, he would have been a citizen of his village with full rights. Igelsbach is just west of Erberbach. (3)
(1) The birth and marriage of Georg Kilians appear in the church records of Eberbach, which are available at “Baden, Germany, Lutherans Baptisms, Marriages, and Burials, 1502-1985,” at Ancestry.com. (2) The Eberbach church records also recorded the baptisms of Hans Georg Seip in 1638 and Agatha in 1647, who could be children of Hanss and Anna Catharina. (3) Hanss’ status as Gemeinsmann is mentioned is mentioned in the records of Beerfelden, where his son lived. These are available in “Beerfelden 1678-1807,” by Karl Diefenbacher, Franz Sobkowiak and Ernst Walz, 1986.
GEORG KILIAN and MARGARETHA SEIP
Georg Kilian Seip was born in 1654 to Hans and Anna Catharina Seip near Eberbach, about 20 miles east of Heidelberg, Germany. (1)
Married Margareta Schumpert in 1680, in Eberbach. She born about 1659 to Nicolaus Schumpert of Gammelsbach. Nicolaus was listed as a “Forstknecht,” which was a forest worker. (2)
Joeg Conrad Seip, born Nov. 14, 1680. Died Oct. 14, 1689
Anna Margaretha Seip, born Aug. 20, 1682.
Anna Catharina Seip, born Nov. 23, 1684.
Johann Michael Seip, born Feb. 13, 1687.
Hans Adam Seip, born March 24, 1689.
Johannes Seip, born Jan. 10, 1692.
Georg Kilian Seip, born Oct. 3, 1694.
Hans Jacob Seip, born Jan. 24, 1697.
Georg Conrad Seip, born Dec. 29, 1701.
Georg Kilian was baptized on Dec. 7, 1654, in Eberbach, which is in the Odenwald region east of Heidelberg. By the time of his wedding in 1680, he had established a connection with the town of Gammelsbach, which is about five miles to the north. His wife was from that town and it was listed as his residence when his children were baptized in nearby Beerfelden.
At some point, George Kilian became a Gemainsmann in Gammelsbach, which means he was a citizen of the town. Since church records don’t list his occupation, he was probably a farmer.
Margaretha died March 29, 1702, at age 43 years, 8 weeks.
On Feb. 8, 1708, Georg Kilian married Susanna Meckes. She was born in 1667. The couple didn’t have any children.
Georg Kilian’s death does not appear in the transcriptions of the Beerfelden church records. Susanna died Dec. 23, 1748, at age 87 years, 10 months.
(1) Georg Kilian’s baptism is recorded in “Baden, Germany, Lutherans Baptisms, Marriages, and Burials, 1502-1985,” at Ancestry.com. (2) The marriage appears to be listed in the records of two parishes under two different dates. It is listed in the records of Eberbach on Feb. 17, 1680. The records of Beerfelden, which is near Gammelsbach, say they were married Jan. 27, 1680. It was not uncommon for the records of different parishes to list a wedding if the bride and groom were from different places. However, they usually agree on the date. The Gammelsbach records provide more information on the Schumperts. They are available in transcriptions contained in “Beerfelden 1678-1807,” by Karl Diefenbacher, Franz Sobkowiak and Ernst Walz, 1986, pages 638-639. (3) The children’s baptisms and subsequent information in this profile appears in the Beerfelden records.
GEORG CONRAD and MARIA ELISABETHA SEIP
George Conrad Seip was born Dec. 29, 1701, to Georg Kilian and Margaretha (Schumpert) Seip in Gammelsbach, in the Odenwald region of Germany. (1)
Married Maria Elisabetha Voelker on July 20, 1730. She was born in 1706 to Jeremias Voelker, a carpenter, and his wife Anna Maria. (2)
Eva Elisabeth Seip, born May 6, 1731.
Elisabeth Christina Seip, born Feb. 19, 1733.
Maria Catharina Seip, born Nov. 19, 1734.
Johann Georg Seip, born Aug. 31, 1736.
Georg Conrad Seip, born Aug. 10, 1738.
Johann Wilhelm Seip, born March 30, 1741. Died March 15, 1743.
Johann Wilhelm Seip, born Dec. 30, 1744.
Johann Adam Seip, born March 26, 1747. Moved in 1768 to Pennsylvania, America.
Maria Elisabeth Seip, born March 28, 1752.
George Conrad was born and raised in Gammelsbach, a small town in the wooded rolling hills of the Odenwald.
Transcriptions of the church records of nearby Beerfelden list Georg Conrad’s occupation but they are difficult to decipher since they are handwritten. The initial designation indicates that he was a Beisass, or tenant farmer, but a second word is difficult to read. The next entry says that he later became a Gemeinsmann, or citizen, of the town.
Georg Conrad died June 29, 1761.
Maria Elisabetha died Dec. 7, 1765.
At least four of the Seips children immigrated to America after their parents’ deaths. Johan Georg Seib, Georg Conrad Seip and Johann Wilhelm Seip appear on the list of passengers who arrived in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, aboard the Chance on Sept. 23, 1766. In addition, the Beerfelden church records mention that Johann Adam left for Pennsylvania in 1768. (4)
(1) Most information in this profile comes from transcriptions of the Beerfelden church records contained in “Beerfelden 1678-1807,” by Karl, Diefenbacher, Franz Sobkowiak and Ernst Walz, 1986, page 643. (2) The wedding and Maria Elisabetha’s parents are listed in the Beerfelden records. Since the transcriptions are handwritten, it’s hard to decipher some entries. It appears that they say the Voelker family was from the nearby towns of Falken-Gaesass. (3) The births are recorded in the Beerfelden church records. (4) The immigration record appears in “Pennsylvania German Pioneers,” a publication of the Pennsylvania German Society, vol. 42. Ralph B. Strassburger, pages708-710.
WILLIAM and SUSANNA SEIP
Johann Wilhelm Seip was born Dec. 30, 1744, in Gammelsbach, Germany, to Georg Conrad and Maria Elisabetha (Voelker) Seip. (1)
Married a woman named Susanna, no later than 1774. (2)
William Seip, born July 23, 1775.
George Jacob Seip, born Aug. 4, 1777.
Jacob Seip, about 1780.
Elizabeth Seip, born March 1, 1783.
Peter Seip, born March 12, 1790.
Wilhelm was born and raised in Gammelsbach, a small town in the German Odenwald, which was south of Darmstadt.
In 1766, Wilhelm and two of his brothers emigrated to America. On Sept. 23 of that year, Johan Georg Seib, Georg Conrad Seip and Johann Wilhelm Seip were among the 112 foreigners who arrived in Philadelphia aboard the ship Chance. The voyage originated in the Dutch port of Rotterdam and stopped in the English port of Cowes along the way. The three sons of Georg Conrad Seip appear as George, Conrad and William Seip appears a few years later in Northampton County, Pa. In addition, German records note that their youngest brother, Johann Adam, emigrated to Pennsylvania two years later. (4)
The brothers seem to have initially settled independently. In 1772, William Seib is listed as a single man on the tax roll for Heidelberg Township. That year, Conrad lived about 15 or 20 miles away in Upper Milford Township and George isn’t listed anywhere in the county. However, they appear to have moved closer to each other during the early 1780s, when they are listed in Whitehall Township. (5)
At some point between 1772 and late 1774, William married a woman named Susanna. She is often identified as a daughter of Francis Giltner of Heidelberg Township. However, a deed that lists Francis’ children and the spouses of his daughters, does not mention a Susanna or a William Seip.
At some point before the summer of 1775, the Seips moved from Heidelberg Township to Whitehall Township, about 10 miles to the east. It seems likely that they lived near the small town of Egypt, which is now in North Whitehall Township, Lehigh County, thanks to later boundary changes.
In August 1775 and September 1777, the couple had sons baptized in the Reformed congregation at Egypt’s union church. It doesn’t seem they were members of the congregation since they aren’t mentioned in other church records and they didn’t have subsequent children baptized there even though they lived in the area for several more years.
By this time, the Revolutionary War was in full swing. No major engagements occurred in what is now Northampton County, but it was close enough to the action around Philadelphia and in New Jersey to ensure that the citizens were always on alert. Pennsylvania authorities required that residents take an oath of allegiance to the state and required all able-bodied men to enlist in local militia units.
On Aug. 18, 1777, Willm Seip swore to renounce the King George III of Great Britain and to remain faithful to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. (6)
William appears on three Revolutionary muster rolls in the published volumes of the Pennsylvania Archives. Although the entries spell his name in wildly different ways, it should be remembered that 18th century spelling was often haphazard and German names sounded peculiar to English ears. It’s helpful to know that militia assignments were based on geography and most who served together were neighbors. In each of the three instances, William’s name is surrounded by those who also appear along with his in the 1781 tax list of Whitehall Township, which makes the identification virtually certain.
In the May 14, 1778, general muster roll of the county’s 2nd Battalion, William Scheil is listed as a private in the 6th Class of the 4th Company. We can be certain that this entry refers to William Seip because the names of others in the company match those of William’s neighbors and because no “William Schiel” appears in other records from the area. The odd spelling of the surname is not a major concern in this case – or in most cases of German names spelled out by English hands. The German name Seip would sound like “Shipe” or “Shibe” to an English ear. The record keeper probably wrote “Scheib,” but the cursive “b” looked like an “l” to the person who transcribed the entry for the published volumes of the Pennsylvania Archives. Although the original copy of the document is not readily available to confirm this, other manuscripts that list members of the Seip family use the “Seib” spelling and end in a “b” that looks very like an “l.” (7)
About three years later, it appears that William was called to active duty but was unable to comply. However, he was able to find a substitute to take his place. An indication of the prevalence of this practice is the fact that 37 of the company’s 48 privates were replaced by substitutes for this particular muster. Members of the 1st Battalion were called to duty on March 31, 1781, and served until May 31. This roll proves the point about 18th century spelling as it records that Wa’m Seib was replaced by Philib Kortz and George Seib was replaced by Elick Dunn of “the 1d Battalion or Northampton Coundy Melitia comand by orders of Semual Rea.”
Finally, W’m Sipe is listed as a private in the 7th Class of the 4th Company, 1st Battalion of the county militia. He appears in the battalion’s general return for Nov. 1, 1781 to Jan. 1, 1782.
Northampton County’s 1781 tax lists indicate that William Seip and Conrad Seip both lived in Whitehall Township. Both were taxed at relatively low rates, 1 pound, 19 shillings, and 9 pence in one list and 1 pounds, 16 shillings and 6 pence in another, and neither is listed among those who were taxed for real estate. This indicates that both were probably renting at the time. (8)
At some point before 1786, William moved his family from Whitehall Township to Lehigh Township, which remains within the boundaries of Northampton County to this day. (9) The name William Seib appears on the township’s tax rolls and William Seip appears on its state census list. (10)
The tax lists for 1786 to 1789 reveal that William was a weaver. Also, he wasn’t wealthy. During the late 1780s, he owned no real estate and his only taxable possessions consisted of livestock. William owned two cattle in 1786, a horse and a cow in 1787, and a single cow in 1788 and 1789. He also appears in the 1790 tax lists, but that record doesn’t provide a breakdown of property as the others do. (11)
Although William appears on the 1790 tax list for Lehigh Township, he seems to have been missed by the federal census taker that year.
At some point in the next few years, William acquired 22 acres in Lehigh Township. It’s unknown when or how William came to possess the land. His name doesn’t appear in the index of county deed books and his name does not appear on the list of state land warrants. All that is known is that his heirs sought to partition it about 12 years after his death.
William died in 1794. The Northampton County register’s index mentions that Susanna Seip was appointed administratrix of William’s estate and an inventory was taken in 1794. Unfortunately, neither of these documents is readily available online at this time to confirm the information. An Orphans Court entry from 1816 assert that William “died intestate on or about the __ day of September in the year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and Ninety five.” Any date in September 1795 would be impossible because the Northampton County orphans court appointed guardians for many of William’s children a month earlier. Presumably, the exact date had been forgotten and the year misstated. It’s possible the month was correctly remembered for some reason. (12)
On Aug. 10, 1795, the orphans court received a petition from Susanna Seip, “the widow of William Seip late of Lehigh Township, yeoman,” who died without leaving a will. He left “among other Children seven minors to wit George and Jacob, above the age of Fourteen years – Elizabeth, Michael, Adam, Peter and Susanna, under that age.” George and Jacob were permitted to select their guardian and they chose Frederick Kuntz. The court appointed George Kuntz as the guardian for the younger children. Frederick Kuntz was a neighbor of the Seip family, according to a transaction recorded in 1816. (13)
The children did not actually live with the guardians, as is shown in the 1800 Census. In that year, Widow Seip appears in the census in Lehigh Township. Her household contained a male age 10-15, presumably Peter; two males 16-25, Michael and Adam; a female 10-15, the younger Susannah; a female 16-25, Elizabeth; and a female 45 and over, who would be the widow. In addition, both George and Peter Kuntz are listed in the same township.
On Nov. 22, 1816, William and Susanna’s eldest son sent Jacob Stem to the orphans court to request the appraisal or possible partition of the 22-acre tract. The county sheriff sent a 12-man jury to inspect the property and they reported on Jan. 24, 1817, that it was too small to partition and that it was worth $364. Two years later, the heirs decided to sell the tract. The land was eventually sold March 13, 1819, to the younger William’s representative Jacob Stem. He paid only $160 for the land. The sales arrangement called for one third of the sale’s proceeds to be used to support Susanna. (14)
Susanna was obviously still alive in 1819, but she seems to disappear from the records after that date.
(1) Willehlm’s birth is available in the transcription of Beerfelden church records at “Beerfelden 1678-1807,” by Karl, Diefenbacher, Franz Sobkowiak and Ernst Walz, 1986, page. Photocopies of this book were provided by Jane Lahey in 2006. (2) William and Susanna were married between 1772 and 1774. William Seib is listed as a single man in the 1772 tax list of Heidelberg Township, according to Pennsylvania Archives, Series 3, vol. 19, page 54. The birth of William’s namesake son occurred in July 1775, according to Pennsylvania Archives, Series 6, Vol. 6, page 22. Susanna is often identified as the daughter of Francis Giltner. This seems to be based on “The Van Horn Family History,” by Francis M. Marvin. However, she is not listed among his heirs in a deed disposing of his property. Northampton County Deed Book F1, page 411, lists the children of Frantz Gueltner as Andrew, Frantz, Barnhart, Jacob, Tobias, Christian, Magdeleana, the wife of Philip Shuck; Catharina, wife of Conrad Riedie; and Margareta, wife of John Wiechter. (3) William’s children are named in Northampton County Orphans Court records. Orphans Court Record 9, page 55. The birth dates of William and George Jacob Seip appear in the records of the Reformed Church in Egypt, Northampton County, which are available in Pennsylvania Archives, Series 6, Vol. 6, pages 22 and 24. Elizabeth and Peter’s birth dates are calculated from their gravestones, which can be seen at Findagrave.com. Jacob’s approximate year of birth comes from the fact that he was at least 14 years old in 1795, according to Northampton County Orphans Court records mentioned below. The children are listed in the order they appear in several records, which seem to name them in birth order. (4) The immigration record appears in “Pennsylvania German Pioneers,” a publication of the Pennsylvania German Society, vol. 42. Ralph B. Strassburger, pages708-710. The four Seip brothers are listed in the church records of Beerfelden transcribed in “Beerfelden 1678-1807.” (5) The 1772 tax listing appear in Pennsylvania Archives, Series 3, vol. 19, page 54. Conrad Seip is listed as a mason living in Upper Milford Township on page 8. No George Seip appears in Northampton County’s 1772 list, but the name appears in some later lists. Only three other Seips are listed in the county in 1772, a good indication of the surname’s rarity. Jacob Sipe, a farmer, is listed in Bethlehem on page 26. Melcher Seip, farmer, is listed in Macungie Township, on page 46. [Melchior Seip was an earlier immigrate and later moved to Weissenberg Township.] Peter Seip, an innkeeper, is listed in Forks Township on page 66. It should be noted that the Gildner family like in Heidelberg Township too, which would give a small boost to a case for Susanna’s connection to that family. In 1781, William appeared on Whitehall Township’s tax list. By 1785, both Conrad and George had moved to the township, where George Seip and Widow Seip are listed. The 1785 list appears in Pennsylvania Archives, Series 3, vol. 19, page 129. Oddly, William does not appear on any of the tax lists for 1785, though he appears in 1786 in Lehigh Township. (6) The oath appears in “Miscellaneous manuscript records of Northampton County, Pennsylvania, 1727-1851,” at FamilySearch.org, image 786. (7) The muster rolls appear in Pennsylvania Archives, Series 5, vol. 8, pages 110, 32 and 48, respectively. (8) Three separate tax lists for 1781 appear in “Pennsylvania, Tax and Exoneration, 1768-1801,” available at Ancestry.com. The Seips appear on the tax lists but not on the itemized list of possessions. (9) Currently available records don’t provide a good indication of when the move occurred. No land transaction involving William appears in the indexes of the Northampton County deed book. The page that would contain William’s entry is missing from the 1783 tax assessment for Whitehall Township and there’s no list for Lehigh Township. These are available in “Miscellaneous manuscript records of Northampton County, Pennsylvania, 1727-1851,” available at FamilySearch.org. Finally, he does not appear in the 1785 tax lists, which Pennsylvania Archives, Series 3, vol. 19. (10) “Pennsylvania, Septennial Census, 1779-1863,” at Ancestry.com. The 1786 tax lists appears in Pennsylvania Archives, Series 3, vol. 19, page 245. (11) The tax rolls for 1787, 1788 and 1789 appears in “Pennsylvania, Tax and Exoneration, 1768-1801,” at Ancestry.com. (12) The register’s index is available at “Pennsylvania, Wills and Probate Records, 1683-1993,” at Ancestry.com. The 1816 record appears in Northampton County Orphans Court Record 9, page 55. (13) The guardians’ appointments are listed in Northampton County Orphans Court Record 6, page 1. The transaction mentioning “F. Kuntz” appears in Northampton County, Pa., Deed Book B4, page 429. (14) A transaction between William Seip and Jacob Stem involving a release of the property was recorded on Nov. 4, 1816, in Northampton County, Pa., Deed Book B4, page 429. The petition to appraise the property is recorded about three weeks later in Northampton County Orphans Court Record 9, page 55. The report on the property’s value appears on page 76. The plan to sell the property in 1819 appears on page 217 and the final purchase is on page 223.