Pastor Clemmons Hirtzel

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Pastor Clemens Hertzel

Birthdate: (48)
Birthplace: Reihen, Rhein-Neckar-Kreis, Baden-Württemberg, Germany
Death: March 25, 1707 (48)
Sinsheim, Rhein-Neckar-Kreis, Baden-Württemberg, Germany
Immediate Family:

Son of Hans Heinrich Hürtzil and Maria Hürtzil
Husband of Anna Hertzel and Ursula Hertzel
Father of Hans Heinrich Hertzel; Johan Georg Hirtzel, Sr.; Maria Esther Hertzel; Ann Margaretha Leib; Hans Ulrich Hirtzel and 5 others
Brother of Catherina Zirkle; Verena Hirtzel Edelmayer; Anna Christina Knecht; Hans Heinrich Hirtzel, Jr.; Maria Barbara Hirtzel and 1 other
Half brother of Barbara Zirckle

Occupation: Brøderbund WFT Vol. 1, Ed. 1, Tree #3265, Date of Import: 9 Apr 1996
Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:

About Pastor Clemmons Hirtzel

Pastor Clemens Hirtzel, a Calvinist clergyman from Winterthur in Switzerland, was minister from 1651 to 1670.

3. Clemens Hertzel (1656-1707) was born and died in Reihen in the Palatinate. (The family changed their name's spelling when they moved. Spellings were not regularized for centuries, and the spelling was usually rendered phonetically in whatever language or dialect they were using. These were not illiterate people, so it wasn't an accident.) His godfather was the pastor of the Reformed Church, also named Clemens Hirtzel, who may have been the person who led the move from Switzerland. Clemens married in 1680 to Anna Sinter (1664-1738) in Reihen, and they had ten children between 1681 and 1705, including our ancestor, Hans Georg, on Sept. 25, 1686. Anna was a midwife who delivered more than 400 babies. Children: Hans Heinrich, Hans Georg, Maria Esther, Christoph "Stoffel", Hans Jonas, Anna Christina, Johann Jacob, Maria Margretha, Anna Margretha and Hans Ulrich.

The year after they were married, in the British American colonies, William Penn was given a land grant (1681) in hopes that he would take the dissenting sects in England over there to live. Then in 1682 the Black Death stuck Europe again. Louis XIV laid claim to the Palatinate after Ludwig II's death in 1685... and also repealed the Edict of Nantes (he was getting old and mean) and began persecuting Protestants again.

Many French Protestants moved to the Palatinate, which in 1688 joins in the War of the League of Augburg against Louis XIV. Predictably, the powerful French army invades, sacks and burns and rampages. In the middle of winter, people are homeless. (The object was apparently the toll castles that impeded the French on the Rhine River.) In 1693 Heidleburg was attacked and burned, it's fortifications destroyed. All this time Anna Sinter Hertzel was having (and delivering) lots of babies. What was that about "living in interesting times"?

But wait, there's more. The endless warfare, combined with the German princes' desire to have French-style lavish castles, led to ever increasing taxation.

And more... This period was in the time known as the "Little Ice Age" when the weather cooled significantly and agricultural outputs (and incomes) dropped. Famines in 1693 - 94 were some of the worst ever recorded, due to failed harvests. Malnutrition led to increased disease.

Clemens Hirzel died in 1707 in Reihen. The winter of 1708-1709 was unbelievably bad; not only did people freeze to death, but reports were that firewood wouldn't burn in the open air; chickens died on their roosts; wine froze in the cask; and the fruit trees and vines--a major part of the region's agriculture--were killed.

During this same time, pamphlets were distributed across the region describing the Americas in glowing terms. The origin was England, and they were decorated with pictures of Queen Anne. Known as the "Golden Book" they seemed to imply that the English crown would help those who emigrated to the British Colonies. How much the Queen had to do with the pamphlet is debatable, but it was to the advantage of the English to populate their territories with the hard-working farmers of the Palatinate. And it was to the financial advantage of the receivers of British land grants to sell the land they had been given to immigrants; and so British agents traveled about, talking people into going to the American colonies. The first group from the Palatinate went up the Rhine to Rotterdam, and then to Dover, and then to America, in 1708. back

4. Our ancestor, Clement's son Hans Georg Hertzel (1686-1755) married in January of 1713, to Anna Margaretha Conrad (1684-1796), who had been born in the nearby village of Ittleingen. They had five children by 1726. They would have seen the "Golden Book" pamphlets, and read the dissenting view pamphlets presented by disgruntled people who had gone and returned. They would have listened to agents of landowners and agents of ship captains make their pitch. Warfare, disease, cold, and the growing population limiting the available farmland were all reasons for leaving. And in the Americas, there would be no nobles, with their taxation and their limiting of the use of the forests. In 1727, the family, with younger brother Hans Ulrich and two other relatives, Dietrich and Hans Ernst Rudi, made the decision and took the trip.

It wouldn't have been something undertaken as an adventure by a 40-year-old man with a family (though it might have been for Ulrich, Dietrich, and Rudi) but rather as a chance for a large amount of farmland. (The religious atmosphere in the Palatinate was tolerant, despite a Catholic Prince Elector, and is not usually mentioned as a reason for emigrating...but the British did make some political hay out of helping the Protestants.)ref.

The trip up the Rhine, with constant tolls, would have sapped their finances. In Rotterdam they boarded the "William and Sara" to a stop in Dover, England and then on across the Atlantic to Pennsylvania; a tiny ship with 400 or so people crowded aboard. The ship's list shows our ancestors as passengers: Hans Jerg Hertzel, 41; Margretha (Conradt); Hans Georg, 13; Hans Jacob, 11; Anna Margretha, 8; Johann Dieterich, 6; Johann Leonhard, 2. (Used to be online, but someone seems to have "claimed" it. Write to me if you have a link to the whole list.)

Typhoid, Yellow Fever, and other diseases of cramped spaces without enough clean water affected many of the ships. There were rats, lice, and bad food. When they disembarked in Pennsylvania, they were supposed to go swear allegance to the English king; Hans Ulrich was "lying sick on board, never came to be qualified." (Declaration) A clerk wrote down his name as Ulrich Hetzell, yet another spelling. He survived, and so did all of the rest of the family, but others didn't.

"Between the years 1727-1750 over 20 persons (I think she means heads of household) by the name of Hartzel arrived in the port of Philadelphia. All these immigrants settled in PA., most in Bucks Co. It was the custom of these people to give two baptismal names and drop one in common usage, usually the first name was dropped." (Ruth Salley Johnson) These included Hans Heinrich b. 1684 and Hans Paul b. 1677, sons of Hans Heinrich, Clement's brother; and Peter Knecht, son of Clement and Hans Heinrich's sister Anna. They arrived in 1732.

Once in Pennsylvania, the family first purchased land about thirty miles from Philadelphia and then in 1734 sold it and purchased 300 acres on the east branch of Saucon Creek, near Epithelium, Lower Saucon Township, then Bucks County, now Northampton County. (map of Hertzel farms) (map of East Branch Saucon Creek)

That's a lot of territory to farm! It will be interesting to find out more about the land transactions. From a book with a chapter about the German settlers, "Davis's 1877 History of Northampton Co, PA": "In 1735, these lands ("the south bank of the Lehigh, at and above the month of the. Saucon") were thrown open to settlement, and the Proprietaries of Pennsylvania had planned and advertised a lottery to be drawn for the disposition of one hundred thousand acres in the wilderness portion of Bucks county-to be laid out anywhere, except on matters and lands already settled-not excepting lands to which the Indian title had not been extinguished, and the scheme provided that squatters who had illegally established themselves, might, by drawing prizes, have their claims ratified. Great numbers of tickets were sold, but, for some cause, the drawing never took place, However, in lieu thereof, the holders of tickets were permitted to locate the lands in question, on certain favorable terms..." I'll bet. (This is followed by a chapter titled "LATER MASSACRES".)

In 1764, towards the end of Hans Georg Hirtzel's life, he transferred title of the farm to his son-in-law and his partner.

Hans Georg Hertzel died in 1755, in Northampton Co., PA. Anna Margaretha Conrad Hertzel died Sept. 20, 1796, Lower Saucon Township, Northampton Co., PA. Children: Hans George Jr. b. 8 Jul 1714, Hans Jacob b. 16 Jan 1716, Anna Margaretha b. 17 Apr 1719, Johann Dietrich (Rudi?) b. 31 Oct 1722, Johann Leonard b. 29 Sep 1726. "Hertzels in Lower Saucon Townchip (south of the Lehigh River) should not be confused with Hartzels in Bethlehem Township (north of the river) which is now called Newburg, and is located where the road between Easton and Bath crosses the road between Bethlehem and Nazareth. Here, at the crossroads, stood the old Inn, built in 1760, operated by Jacob Hertzel (brother of George, Jr), and later by Jonas, son of Jacob. The land of Jacob ran from this corner to the Drylands Churchyard at Hecktown, where he is buried. His son, Jonas Hartzel, was sheriff of Northampton Co. and filled a number of prominent positions during the Revolution. In later life Jonas bought an Inn at Allentown and is buried there. There is still an Inn at the crossroads in Newburg. A descendant of Jacob Hertzel, Mr. Elmer Kriedler, who now lives just opposite the present day Inn, said in 1932 that Hartzels was later called Newburg, because, as it sat on a hill, the pioneers aproaching it from the south, called it New Burg (hill or mountain)." From the book "Hartzell & Allied Families of Bash Stauffer Worman & Shallenberger - Ancestors & Descendants of Michael & Nancy Hartzell, Pennsylvania to Illinois, 1836" by Helen Jackson Black, Wichita, Kansas, 1943. back

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Pastor Clemmons Hirtzel's Timeline

February 20, 1659
Reihen, Rhein-Neckar-Kreis, Baden-Württemberg, Germany
September 25, 1681
Age 22
Reihen, Baden, Germany
May 30, 1686
Age 27
Reihen, Rhein-Neckar-Kreis, Baden-Württemberg, Germany
November 9, 1688
Age 29
November 1690
Age 31
Reihen, Herzogtum Württemberg, Heiliges Römisches Reich Deutscher Nation
July 1, 1694
Age 35
February 1696
Age 36
December 27, 1699
Age 40
December 27, 1699
Age 40
Reihen, Baden-Württemberg, Germany