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.
happy hereafter, but first must pass through punishment according to their Sins." Dr. Walker here has fallen into a mass of confusion that had doubtless bewildered other men before him, and that certainly has blinded hundreds to the truth since his day; and it is to make another effort, in behalf of justice and historical truth, to clear up this confusion, that I beg space for these lines. The facts in brief are these: The Ephrata Society, who were an offshoot of the Dnnker sect, were Sabbatarians and ascetics; yet they retained a few of the principles and practices of the parent body. Often, therefore, they were called Dunkers; often, on the other hand, through a similar lack of discrimination, the Dunkers were confused with the Slbbatarians, and, in consequence, charged with their ascetic practices and heretical doctrines. These misconceptions have clung to the subject with the characteristic persistency of error, from generation to generation, and even in our own day are by no means entirely dispelled. In the realm of fiction they have found a congenial atmosphere; and even in sober history they have taken deep root. Howe, the historian, whose book, Virginia: Its History and Antiquities, is eagerly sought after and highly prized by students and librarians of to-day, wrote a hundred years after Dr. Walker; yet he follows the same wrong path. Indeed, he gets far further into the maze of error, and he is probably still leading multitudes after him. In his sketch of Botetourt county (page 203), he says: "At the small village of Amsterdam, 5 miles s. of Fincastle, there is a large brick church, lately built by the Dunkards The Dunkers at Amsterdam are descendants of Germans who emigrated to Pennsylvania. The following, regarding the tenets and practices of this sect, is from a published account: " 'The Tunkers are a denomination of Seventh-Day Baptists, which took its rise in the year 1724. [The Tunker sect originated in Germany in 1708. Beissel, who afterwards founded the monastic sect, was baptized by a Tunker bishop, near Philadelphia, in 1724.] It was founded by a German, who, weary of the world, retired to an agreeable solitude within sixty miles of Philadelphia, for the more free exercise of religious contemplation. Curiosity attracted followers, and his simple and engaging manners made them proselytes. They soon settled a little colony, called Ephrata, in allusion to the Hebrews, who used to sing psalms on the border of the river Euphrates. This denomination seem to have obtained their name from their baptizing their new converts by plunging. [The terms Tunker and Dunker did arise from the mode of baptizing by immersion, or dipping, frem Ger. tunken, to dip.] * * They use trine immersion, with laying on the hands and prayer, even when the person baptized is in the water. [This is true of the Dun
slept as well as we could. As we had nothing to eat, we had to fast, thanking the Lord that he had protected us this day. On November 16th, we started early from our lodging place and hurried to the next house to get a breakfast. When we arrived there, the good people had themselves no hread, but they were willing to serve us some Welsh corn* and butter-milk. The man seemed to be a pious Presbyterian. He praised Whitefield very much. We crossed the mountains and came to the James River, through which we had to swim. It was hard work, but we got through safely. We continued our journey till evening, seeing a country with mountains all around. In the evening we had to cross still another small river. Then we came to a house, where we had to lie on bear skins around the fire like the rest. The manner of living is rather poor in this; district. The clothes of the people consist of deer skins. Their food of Johnny cakes, deer and bear meat. A kind of white people are found here, who live like savages. Hunting is their chief occupation.† On November 17th, our path led through the mountains. We heard an awful howling of wolves in the morning, quite near. We wished them far away.! When we crossed the Catawba Creek a Quaker joined us, going with us three miles. In the afternoon we came to Justice Robeson, who owns a mill. Here we expected to get some bread. But his answer was: "There is not a bit of bread in the house." We went two miles further, * Probably hominy. used as a substitute for bread until the erection of mills. † The missionaries were then in the section now embracing the counties of Bath and Allegheny. The settlers who then resided there were sentries on the last outpost of civilization, with the Indians as their only neighbors upon the west. It may be properly noted here that the diaries confirm Kercheval's statement that peace with the Indians was not broken until subsequent to 1754, as the missionaries make no reference whatever to Indian troubles in any of the sections visited by them. ‡ Wolves were numerous in this section of Virginia for years after the date of this journey. A reward was given for wolf heads. and the County Court of Augusta made allowance in 175' for 256 heads. Waddell's Annals of Augusta County, p. 68 (1902).
Potsdam Church of the Brethren, Brother Lester Heisey, Pastor Alvin C. Cook, Pastor Robert W. Kurtz, Pastor Craig Brown