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Jacob Pitsenbarger

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Born in Lancaster County, Pennsylvaniamap
Husband of — married in Shenandoah Co., VAmap
Died in Wayne Twp., Darke Co., OHmap
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Jacob & Margaret (Butcher) PITSENBARGER moved from Randolph Twp, Montgomery Co. OH, to Wayne Twp, Darke Co. before 1830. Among other children, they had two sons: Jacob Asbury Pitsenberger (b:18 Aug 1802 in Fayette Co., PA d:24 Sep 1878 in Darke Co., OH and Henry Pitsenbarger (b:10 Nov 1805 in Fayette Co., PA d:after 1870)). Henry accompanied his father to Darke Co., while Jacob Asbury remained in Montgomery Co. until about 1841 when he moved north to Neave Twp, Darke Co. Jacob Asbury was married (6 Sep 1825 in Montgomery Co.) to Susannah Miller (b:24 Apr 1804 in Montgomery Co., OH d:24 Apr 1859 in Darke Co., OH). Jacob & Elizabeth were buried at the West Branch Cemetery in Neave Twp, Darke Co., OH. Jacob Asbury later married (10 Nov 1861 in Darke Co., OH) Christina Troop. Henry was married (25 Sep 1828 in Montgomery Co.) to Elizabeth Miller (b:17 Sep 1810 in Montgomery Co., OH d:11 Feb 1863 in Darke Co., OH). Elizabeth was buried at Yoder Cemetery north of Versailles in Wayne Twp, Darke Co., OH. Henry lived with his daughter Catherine in the 1870 census. None know when/whre Henry died and was buried.

JACOB PITSENBARGER (1767-1840) [1]
There has long been confusion over the exact number and names of Jacob Pitsenbarger's children. Unlike the situation of his younger brother Peter (died in Darke Co. December 3, 1837), who left a will listing his children, later researchers have had to rely on less personal documents and descendants' memories to determine the extent of Jacob's family. While this article does not presume to have the final answers, some new information has come to light during the past year (1990) which should be considered by those investigating Jacob's family.
Jacob Pitsenbarger was born in 1767, the eldest son of Abraham and Elizabeth Pitsenberger. He was bequeathed a third part of his father's real property in Abraham's 1781 will. He married Margaret Butcher in 1792/3 and moved to Fayette Co., Pennsylvania, where his family was counted in the 1810 census. In 1811 (according to Beer's 1880 History of Darke Co.) he moved to Ohio and settled in Randolph Township, Montgomery Co., where he paid taxes in 1816. His presence in Montgomery Co. up to 1828 is implied by the marriages of some of his children there. By the time of the 1830 census Jacob had moved to Wayne Township, Darke Co., where he remained, situated north of Versailles, until his death July 9, 1840.
Following Jacob's death there was a minor flurry of activity in the Darke Co. Court of Common Pleas. On September 4, 1840, Daniel R. Davis was appointed administrator of Jacob's estate. Then on December 26, 1840, Jacob's widow Margaret relinquished her rights in the matter and their son Henry Pitsenbarger was named administrator of the estate, a task which occupied Henry until February 14, 1859. These facts were reported by Anita Short and Ruth Bowers in their abstracts from the Court records, and all future researchers have presumed that, unlike his brother, Jacob died intestate, without a will.
In May 1990 I visited the Darke Co. Court House to obtain a copy of Jacob's brother Peter Pitsenbarger's 1837 will. Peter was my ancestor. Peter's will was indexed but not copied into the will books. Short & Bowers had noted that so I could explain to the clerk at the Probate Court that Peter's will was loose. However, the clerk was busy and couldn't spare the time to hunt up a loose will from the vault. Instead, she permitted my entry to the vault pointing at a series of drawers where the old wills were stored. I found Peter's will. I also found other Pitsenbarger wills.
In an envelope labeled "Jac Pitsenbarger" I found two wills bound tightly together with a strip of paper, one inside the other. The outer will was that of Jacob's son Jacob Asbury Pitsenberger (died 1878). The inner document was the last will and testament of Jacob Pitsenbarger, Jacob Asbury's father, an unrecorded will unknown to modern researchers. Dated July 31, 1837, it was witnessed by Daniel R. Davis and Elijah Ward. Accompanying documents included the court appearance of Davis and Ward attesting to the signature (mark) of Jacob Pitsenbarger and their statement that Jacob was of sound mind when he made the will. Also included was a paper documenting his widow's appearance in court to relinquish her rights to the estate, also witnessed by Davis.
There is no official explanation of why the court first assigned the role of administrator to Daniel Davis and eventually awarded that task to Henry Pitsenbarger. However, the will fails to expressly name an executor and that may be the reason the court acted in the manner it did. I believe the reason Henry was chosen administrator was due to him being the eldest son living in Darke Co. at the time. Henry's older brother Jacob Asbury was still living in Montgomery Co. and would not move to Neave Twp, Darke Co., until the following year.
Of interest to genealogists are the bequests: "Second I give and bequeath unto my three sons Henrey John and Jonathan the plantation on which we now reside situated in Wayne Township Darke County Ohio containing two hundred and forty acres of land ... each one of them to have an equal quantity thereof Thirdly that all my personal property shall be appraised and sold by my executors and the procedes thereof be equally divided between my son Jacob and my daughters Elizabeth Slonaker Katharine Radibaugh Phebe Fetters and Margaret Metzgar and my grandson Jacob Cox ..."
Who was this Jacob Cox? The will called him a grandson, but none of Jacob's known daughters had married into the Cox family. To explain the identity of Jacob Cox, I must cite another's research. In April of 1990 (just before leaving to visit Darke Co.), I received a letter from Robert D. Anderson of Dayton, OH, a descendant of William Cox. He inquired as to whether Jacob & Margaret Pitsenbarger had had a daughter named Barbara, a name long preserved among the descendants of Jacob Cox as the given name of his mother who died on the day of his birth, April 4, 1820, in Randolph Township, Montgomery Co., OH. Anderson had discovered the results of a civil suit brought February 24, 1823, by a Jacob Pitzerbarger against William Cox in the matter of the custody of Jacob Cox, a minor. The case was decided in the Montgomery Co. Court of Common Pleas May 19, 1823, by the Honorable Joseph H. Crane. Jacob lost the suit and the court confirmed its earlier assignment of William Cox as guardian of Jacob Cox.
Anderson provided further information that Jacob Cox's father John (son of William) had died suddenly in 1822, and that shortly after the civil suit was decided, William Cox moved to Wayne/Randolph Co., IN, taking little Jacob with him. Anderson also provided a copy of the John Cox estate sale of November 28, 1822, where a Jacob and Henry Pitsenbarger purchased items (Jacob bought a quilt). As final proof of the connection between Jacob Pitsenbarger and Jacob Cox, Anderson sent copies of two slips of paper signed by Jacob Cox dated September 6, 1841, and February 22, 1842, indicating he had received a total of $54.66 from Henry Pitsenbarger, acting as administrator of Jacob Pitsenbarger's estate. This was enough evidence to add Barbara to the list of Jacob's children, and the bequest to "my grandson Jacob Cox" in Jacob's will clinched the matter.
On the basis of the newly discovered will and Robert D. Anderson's information about Jacob Cox, we can now assemble a preliminary list of Jacob & Margaret (Butcher) Pitsenbarger's children in probable order of birth: Anna Catherine (born 1794, married Adam Rodabaugh), Phoebe (born ca. 1795, married Daniel Fetters), Barbara (born 1796, married John Cox), Elizabeth "Betsy" (born ca. 1798, married Adam Slonecker), Jacob Asbury (born 1802, married 1- Susanna Miller and 2- Christina Troop), Margaret (born ca. 1803, married Jacob Metzger), Henry (born 1805, married Elizabeth Miller, sister of Susanna), John D. (born ca. 1809, married Peter's daughter Sarah "Sally" Pitsenbarger), and Jonathan B. (born 1812, married Peter's daughter Anna Mary Pitsenbarger).
Future research will determine whether this list is complete. On the basis of his age (as reported in the 1830 Darke Co. census), the Philip Pitsenbarger of Jackson Co., OH, in 1820 and Darke Co., OH, in 1830 is certainly Jacob's youngest brother and not his son, as some researchers previously believed.


Date: 31 JAN 1767
Place: Lancaster County, Pennsylvania
Note: Trinity Lutheran Church[2][3]


Date: 1 MAR 1767


Date: 9 JUL 1840
Place: Darke Co., OH[4]


Yoder Cemetery, Wayne Twp, Darke Co., OH

Click to the Changes page for the details of edits by Carrol and others.


  • Source: S2555 Abbreviation: International Genealogical Index (R) Title: International Genealogical Index (R) Author: The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Publication: Copyright (c) 1980, 2002, data as of November 27, 2005 Repository: #R847
  • Repository: R847 Name: Family History Library Address: Family History Library CONT 35 N West Temple Street CONT Salt Lake City, Utah 84150 USA Name: Family History Library Address 1: 35 N West Temple Street Address 2: Salt Lake City, Utah 84150 USA
  • Source: S4 Abbreviation: tombstone Title: tombstone Subsequent Source Citation Format: tombstone BIBL tombstone.
  • Source: S64 Abbreviation: Lancaster County Birth Records Title: Lancaster County Birth Records Subsequent Source Citation Format: Lancaster County Birth Records BIBL Lancaster County Birth Records.
  1. Wally Garchow [Another version of this was published Darke County Kindling, X:2, July 1991, pp. 31-32]
  2. Source: #S64
  3. Source: #S4 Page: Died July 9, 1840, 73 years 5 months 9 days
  4. Source: #S4

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Thank you to Carrol Paul for creating WikiTree profile Pitsenbarger-7 through the import of Charles Elmer Paul ancestors.ged on Feb 20, 2013.

Thank you to Robert Harter for creating WikiTree profile Pitsenbarger-12 through the import of harter.ged on Aug 31, 2013. Click to the Changes page for the details of edits by Robert and others.

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