You are entering a new realm in researching your German Baptist Brethren ancestry.  This site, as are many others maintained on this domain, presents to researchers and historians high-quality images of historical reference books about the Brethren.  While the companion site, German Baptist Brethren Almanacs, Annuals & Yearbooks, holds many of the periodicals, this site will contain the various district histories, congregational histories, etc., etc., that have been professionally digitized by your host.

Yes, a good-sized portion of the works represented herein can be located online at "archive" web sites, but they are not truly archival in nature.  In truth the majority of them are little better than poor, second generation Xerox copies.  And, the files are often corrupted!  A better term for that digital workflow would be "informational digitization" in that those works are generally lower in quality by magnitudes than what you will discover here.  Furthermore, those images were acquired and highly compressed with the caveat that the images, before being compressed, were not tonally adjusted.  Even worse is that the images were never saved in an archival digital file format.  A picture was taken with the images immediately output to a PDF file for display on the Internet.  No care was taken to ensure that the images would stand the test of time.

In our case the images were scanned in their entirety, in other words not cropped, with the over scan (that portion of the image outside of the page itself) being carefully removed.  After several weeks of acquiring and "cleaning" the images, metadata was applied to the record set.  For those not understanding that term, metadata is information about the image, in this case, the book and bibliographical information.  Metadata can be thought of as the writing often found on the reverse of those old photographs we all have.  In the case of the digital images the metadata was input into each and every image, no matter the size of the work being digitally preserved.

After this step a duplicate set of images was created for tonal and sharpness adjustments.  The series of steps followed for each record set in creating this set of actions was carefully recorded so that the adjustments so made could be recorded into the metadata.  After designing and running a script that accomplishes much of this, in actuality only a portion of the images to be adjusted needing to be sampled, the script was run for this alternate group of images.

At this point the images to be displayed on the Internet needed to be created.  Again, a series of scripts was designed to accomplish this.  This process removing the metadata from the images to be displayed online, the metadata was re-inserted into the online set of images.  The final phase was to create a series of pages to be displayed online.

The result of these processes is now available to you.  In the main most of the content available on this site is available to subscribers only.  There is material available to non-subscribers, but it is limited.

The menu system utilized to access the books can be difficult to understand.  It could have been simpler in design, if only the various books themselves had fallen into one larger overriding category.  Such, however, is not the case.  This site will eventually house books covering those states for which there have been district histories and other more generalized books.

In the case of the various district histories there are many states that are split into three, or more, districts.  Pennsylvania has four districts: Eastern, Middle, Southern and Western.  And, each district may have more than one published history; such as the 1920 and 1955 histories for the Southern District of Ohio.  Thus there will be under the District menu link (when it is created) a link for Ohio > Southern District > 1920 as well as a 1955 menu item.  The menus will be logical in nature so that should be fairly easy to follow.

Such may not be the case for other Brethren historical works.  For instance, as of this writing there are two books online, The Minutes of the Annual Meetings of the Brethren — 1778 - 1917 and Some Who Led — Or — Fathers in the Church of the Brethren Who Have Passed Over.  One book is a biographical work while the other is non-biographical in nature.  Thus under the General menu link there will be a sub-menu item for each, Biographical and Non-biographical.

The only other envisioned menu item is one entitled "Congregational," or named something alike it, for the various and numerous congregations for which there are published histories.

Monday, 30 December 2013 07:15

Discussion #1

Written by

Today’s blog, the first in a series that will hopefully be an on-going explanation of what I am presently working on, is about the various Brethren Miller families who were early settlers of Montgomery county, Ohio.  The opening section below is some comments about the Miller families of note, followed by what I am working on at this time.  In essence there are three Miller families that interest me, and I am not even remotely related to any of them, so, to that end, here goes.

Thursday, 02 January 2014 07:30

Discussion #2

Written by

This blog entry shall deal with finalizing, almost, the lands of Elder Daniel Miller (1755-1822).  Elder Daniel owned land that today lies along the Upper Bear Creek Road of Miami township, Montgomery county, Ohio.  When he owned it, and prior to that, the land was owned by Elder Jacob Miller (ca. 1838-1815).  Normally to plat land it is fairly easy to transcribe a single deed and overlay that onto high-quality scans of the Montgomery County, Ohio Atlas of 1875.  In this instance it is difficult as that particular section, in 1875 versus the early 18th Century, had been cut up into differing tracts.  In other words, it was not easily done because of intervening deeds.  To rectify this it fell upon me to pull all the deeds, at least those that were recorded for this section, which led to some discoveries.

Tuesday, 28 January 2014 12:59

Discussion #3

Written by

If you arrived at this page via a Rootsweb mailing list posting then the material below is the same as in the posting to the mailing list.  In that case, click on the button.  However, if you discovered this blog entry, then please read the content below.

This particular blog entry is about an item not normally covered by the mailing lists I am involved in.  My interests lying primarily with the German Baptist Brethren and Montgomery county, Ohio, and this book being about Ohio history, it may or may not be of interest to others.

Click HereOhio HistoryClick Here
Tuesday, 11 February 2014 05:16

Discussion #4

Written by

This blog entry shall be another foray into the mysteries of land records, or perhaps more correctly, what can be found if you dig deeply enough into them.  Additionally, it will include a somewhat fictionalized account of what may have occurred if your ancestor was contemplating moving to the newly opened Northwest Territory.

Unfortunately with the advent of the Internet, recliner-chair research is more the norm than the rule.  And it keeps getting worse as time goes on.  While any researcher worth his salt knows that researching deeds is one of the areas that should be explored not many are willing to travel down the road less traveled.  Being lazy or unwilling to have it performed by a knowledgeable person prevails.  Generally a researcher will got to the county of their interest and pull any and all deeds that pertain to their ancestor, and if they are smart they will spend time while there to research the deeds of other parties they are interested in.  I do not recall how many times the trip to a court house has been made only to discover many months later that I should have pulled another record I saw.  A lamentable fact, but true.

Monday, 28 July 2014 09:06

Discussion #5 — A Dunkard's Honor

Written by


A War Incident Which Testifies to the Honesty of the Sect.

General E. P. Alexander in the Century.

Near Hagerstown I had an experience with an old dunkard which gave me a high and lasting respect for the people of that faith. My scouts had had a horse transaction with this old gentleman, and he came to see me about it. He made no complaint, but said it was his only horse, and as the scouts had told him we had some hoof-sore horses we should have to leave behind, he came to ask if I would trade him one of those for his horse, as without one his crop would be lost.

This blog entry stems from, and is in part courtesy of Dennis D. Roth, a co-worker in German Baptist Brethren research and documentation of Washington state.  During one of his online research trips he located the newspaper article in the left-hand column below and posted it to the Rootsweb's Brethren Mailing List on July 28, 2014.  Seeing the value in this wonderful find, I decided to make the spelling corrections, locate a proper source, and, make comments as an adjunct to it.  Enjoy!!!

Monday, 28 July 2014 09:06

Discussion #6 — Digital Projects

Written by

This blog entry shall delve into the various archival pursuits I have been involved with since my last blog entry, Discussion #5 — A Dunkard's Honor, in July of this year.  It has been well received and has been read in excess of 200 times to date.  One would think that a kind note to this author for the effort would have have been in order.  Unfortunately, the more people have expectations that their research is online, the worse the social graces become when they read that same item of interest.  This also applies to several e-mails recently sent regarding the Hendricks and Mack families as well as my latest creation, the Kansas district history by Prof. Craik of McPherson College.  What a treacherous road to travel down for society, ignoring the niceties.

Thursday, 16 October 2014 06:11

Discussion #7 — Digital Projects #2

Written by

Our Communion in Kentucky.

. . . I will give the particulars of our progress at present.  Brethren G. V. Siber, W. Cassell, T. Crider, and John Smith came from Ohio on the 23rd of November, and on the 25th of the same month organized a church, calling it the Blue Spring Church of Kentucky. . .

It as been a busy week around here with some 70 hours since last Friday having been spent updating ministers and congregation while at the same time adding three newly found ministers, two congregations and discovering an oddity of one of the congregations that was heavily involved in the Old Older and Conservative split of 1881.

Looking for one item of interest I found something entirely different, leading me down the researching-in-depth path from which there is no return.  I loathe when this occurs, realizing it will lead me down other paths—eventually at times forgetting that which I was originally searching for.

Recently Added

  • Ohio Archæological and Historical Society Publications, Volume XX [1911], page 137

    Ohio Archæological and Historical Society
    Publications, Volume XX

    Ohio Archæological and Historical Society Publications, Volume XX [1911], Page 137 [Click for larger image]Page 137

    LOGAN — THE MINGO CHIEF. 171 0-1780. [The Ohio tribes of Indians produced an extraordinary number of illustrious chiefs who figured large in the history of their race. Among these were Pontiac, Tecumseh, Cornstalk, Little Turtle, Blue Jacket and a score of others who left distinguished records as warriors, orators and tribal leaders. Among these perhaps no one gained a fame so wide as that acquired by Logan, the Mingo chief who refused to attend the Treaty of Camp Charlotte and at that time delivered the speech which has been recited by thousands of school boy declaimers. The following biography of Logan, probably as authentic as can now be obtained, is from the Draper Manuscripts — Border Forays, 2 D., Chapter 12 — in the Library of the Wisconsin Historical Society. The notes also herewith published were made by it recent student of the manuscripts. Both are published through the courtesy of Dr. Reuben G. Thwaites, Secretary of the Wisconsin Historical Society. — E. O. R.] During the last half of the seventeenth century, long and bloody wars were waged between the Five Nations of Indians and the white inhabitants of Canada. The savages killed or captured—as was ever their wont—regardless of age or sex. Among their prisoners was a boy, born in Montreal of French parentage and baptized in the Roman Catholic chnrch,2 who after being adopted into a family of Oneidas,3 of the Wolf clan,4 and given the name of Shikelimo,5 eventually married a wife of the Cayugas.6 Shikelimo became the father of several children,7 who, according to the Indian rule, were of the same tribe as the mother.8 In the course of time, he was raised to the dignity of a chief among the Oneidas9—the nation of his adoption. In the year 1728, having been by the Grand Council of the Iroquois "set over" the Shawanese,10 who then occupied contiguous territory to, and were held in subjection by, the Five Nations, Shikelimo removed with his family to a small Indian village on the east side of the West Branch of the Susquehanna, at a point about fourteen miles above its junction with the Northeast Branch,

    Be the first to comment! Read 2394 times
  • Ohio Archæological and Historical Society Publications, Volume XX [1911], page 1

    Ohio Archæological and Historical Society
    Publications, Volume XX

    Ohio Archæological and Historical Society Publications, Volume XX [1911], Page 1 [Click for larger image]Page 1

    OHIO Archaeological and Historical PUBLICATIONS PREHISTORIC EARTHWORKS IN WISCONSIN. A. B. STOUT, University of Wisconsin. In presenting this subject it seems best to the writer to treat somewhat in detail the various classes of earthworks and then to give a summary for the state as a whole with a brief discussion of the archæological area to which it belongs. With this plan in view the various artificial earthen structures in Wisconsin of prehistoric origin (at least the greater number are prehistoric) may be grouped into the following rather well defined types: enclosures, conical mounds, flat topped mounds, effigy mounds, linear mounds, intaglio earthworks, refuse heaps, garden beds and corn fields. Altho there are some earth remains that are intermediate between various types, the above classification serves to good advantage for discussion and comparison, and may well be treated in the order given. Few enclosures exist in Wisconsin. Yet the most famed of the earthworks within the state is an enclosure with accompanying earthworks which has been called the Aztalan ruins. It would be of no special value to present here a review of the literature pertaining to these earthworks. Those who desire this will find that West (1) has recently made a complete historical summary together with a critical analysis of the literature on Aztalan. These remarkable ruins are now badly mutilated by long

    Be the first to comment! Read 2395 times
  • The Virginia Magazine of History and Biography, Vol. XII, No. 1 (Jul., 1904), page 57

    The Virginia Magazine of History and Biography

    The Virginia Magazine of History and Biography, Vol. XII, No. 1 (Jul., 1904), page 57 [Click for larger image]The Virginia Magazine of History and Biography, Vol. XII, No. 1 (Jul., 1904), page 57

    houses are all very small and poor. He was immediately willing and promised to assist us as much as he could. He also sent out a messenger that evening to announce the service. July 11th. We stayed in our church to-day, being very happy in the Lord. The Sabbath was a blessing to us. Our host spoke much with us on religious matters. He is a sincere man. July 12th, Sunday. High German, English and Low German people [Hollanders] assembled for the sermiion. They brought eight children whom they asked me to baptize. There was a suspicion among the people that I was a Moravian, but the Lamb came with his divine power upon the people. They waited till afternoon, wheni I preached another sermon, which the Lamb blessed. Many complained about their forsaken condition, that they had not been to the Lord's Supper for four years for want of a minister. The people asked us to come again if possible. We had much pity for them. July 13th. Our host asked us much to-day about Bethlehem and the Moravian religion. I answered as much as was necessary. Then a man from Canachogery [Canajoharie, N. Y.], asked me if I were a minister. I answered: "Yes." He said that five years ago one from Philadelphia had been up to see him. He had pretended to be a Lutheran minister, and that I looked exactly like him. He had been a deceiver. (He meant Burleus.9) Our host became very fond of us. July 14th. Our host traveled with us thirty miles to help us along. On the way he announced [to the people] our service. In the evening we passed the South Branch10 safely and came to 9 This is John Christopher Pyrlaeus, who was born in Saxony, Germany. He emigrated to Pennsylvania in 1741. Ordained a presbyter in 1742. Zinzendorf appointed him as his assistant in Philadelphia, where his presence caused considerable trouble. Returned to Europe in 1751. See Reichel, Early History of Moravians, pp. 89, 104; Reincke, Register of Moravians, p. 81. 11 Of the South Branch Schnell writes as follows in his Special Report. "Forty miles from there [Patterson's Creek] is the 'Soud Brentch' [South Branch], which flows between high mountains. It is settled for more than sixty miles. Many Germans live there, who have no minister. I had pity for these people, to whom I preached twice. The doctrine of free grace tasted well to them, and they learned to love me very much."

    Be the first to comment! Read 565 times