My 4th great grandfather West was born in Württemberg, Germany, some time in the late 1700’s and served in the German army. By 1828 he and his family of 3 boys had moved to Clarion County, Pennsylvania. There is a write up on his son Ulrich, my 3rd great grandfather that mentions that my 4th great grandfather was killed by a horse, he had a livery stable. Peter, another son, would inherit the farm and livery from his father.
Clarion county has some interesting documentation posted from 1877-1878, Caldwell‘s Illustrated Historical Combination Atlas of Clarion County, 1877.I spent the night looking through scanned pictures hoping to find the blacksmith shop located somewhere. Peter would have died sometime after 1870, although the Census had him living in Venango county.
According to the Caldwell’s book on May 30th, 1860 a tornado passed over Mayville at 11:00 A. M. Several buildings were destroyed, people were killed or maimed and a blacksmith by the name of Hettric escaped from the debris of his shop, ran eight miles, bareheaded and barefooted, and brought up in “very good time” at his sister’s in Troy Jefferson county. I don’t think this is my grandfather; my assumption is that if it was he would have run home to his wife and children. Ironically enough multiple tornados blew threw the same area, May 31th, 1985. Tornados are pretty rare in Pennsylvania; most inhabitants thought the hills protected them. Since the 1985 disaster there has been a couple of smaller tornados go through the area. The first tornado siren I ever heard was in the south.
I figured that because of his odd death, there might be an article written about the blacksmith, but there wasn’t. Peter is listed as living in Farmington, Clarion, Pennsylvania in 1850 as a farmer. After much searching I was able to locate Ulrich in 1850 in Butler, Butler, Pennsylvania, as a farmer. Once again the transcription was way wrong. Ulrich’s wife Barnhart was listed as Banharting, the last name misread as Trest.
This makes me wonder if the large farm and livery stable, Peter would inherit, is where Peter is living in 1850. It is looking like land records may be my next best bet for finding out the name of Peter and Ulrich’s father.