Killian Merki
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Kilian William Merki (bef. 1719 - 1792)

Kilian William (Killian) [uncertain] Merki aka Marck, Mark, Merck
Born before in Embrach, Zürich, Switzerlandmap
Ancestors ancestors
Brother of
Husband of — married [date unknown] [location unknown]
Husband of — married [date unknown] [location unknown]
Husband of — married [date unknown] [location unknown]
Descendants descendants
Died in East Hanover, Lancaster, Pennsylvania, USAmap
Profile last modified | Created 1 Jan 2014
This page has been accessed 875 times.
Killian Merki performed Patriotic Service in Pennsylvania in the American Revolution



William Killian Merck emigrated from Embrach, Switzerland, in 1735, with his two brothers and presumably his mother. His father, Hans Heinrich Merki, died enroute to America. They settled in E. Hanover Twp. "Killian" and Anna had many children, and their descendants settled throughout Pennsylvania and in Ohio. Their son, Adam Mark, served in the Lancaster County Militia during the Revolutionary War and was promoted from Private to Lieutenant. Sources: Mark Family web page and LDS records provided by Jim Mark.

"William Killian Merck emigrated from Switzerland on the ship Mercury, disembarking at Philadelphia on 29 May 1735. He is listed on the passenger list as Killian Merck, age 16. The only other Merck to disembark from the ship was Hendryk (Henry) Merck, his older brother. According to family history, their father, Heinrich Merck, died enroute.

"Killian stayed in Philadelphia long enough to be enumerated on the colonial census of 1735. From there he made his way to Lancaster County, settling and establishing a farm in Hanover Township. He appears as a landowner on tax rolls of Lancaster County as early as 1751. He and Anna had at least nine children. By 1790, Hanover Township formed part of Dauphin County. The first official United States census, taken that year, shows separate households in Dauphin County for Killian, Adam, George, Jacob, David, and Rudolph Mark. Killian's farm was located near present-day Ono in East Hanover Township, Lebanon County."[1]


22 November 1719 Embrach, Zürich, Switzerland
(Unknown birth date. Above date is Baptism Date)


No. 88. List of Persons from the Parish Wallissellen, who since the year 1734 left for Carolina.
Left October 5, 1734.
1. Married People: Hans Heinrich Merki, Baptized June 3, 1688
2. Elsbeth Wezstein, Wife, Baptized May 30, 1693
3. Heinrich, Baptized February 23, 1716
4. Kilian, Baptized November 22, 1719
5. Hans, Baptized October 26, 1722
6. Hans Conrad, Baptized September 21, 1727


5 NOV 1792 East Hanover, Lancaster, Pennsylvania[2]
  • Researcher #1 (Linda Stienstra)
When I met with Harold E. Marks, in 2005, he related information found on his travels to Zurich to research our mutual family line. He did a thorough search, and documented it with newspaper articles, letters, interviews, and Parish registers, plus other sources. A copy of his work, as it pertains to my particular line, is in my possession.
The following excerpts of the account of The Merki-Wettstein Family's Departure from Switzerland is taken from "The Marks/Schnader Connection, Berks and Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, An Ancestral Study;" 1996, by Harold E. Marks, pages 14 thru 25:
The Merki-Wettstein Family in 1734 faced a crucial decision. The apparent beginning ideas of emigration by the Marks Family (It was Merki in Switzerland) were conjured up on hearing glowing reports of Carolina settlements, not Pennsylvania, in America during the late 1600's and 1700's. . . . A Pastor Goetschy, from a prominent Zurich family, was to be the leader of approximately 40 - 50 families. They were to be supported in large part for their overseas passage by what then was known as the Dutch Reformed Church based in the Netherlands."
On October 7, 1734, The Nachrichten von Zurich, a newspaper of the city, published an account of the departure of the colony of Maurice Goetschy. A list in the document by Mr. Marks lists the Emigrants in Goetschy's Colony list which consists of three columns, the Name of the Head of the Family, Home in Switzerland and Number traveling.
On the above referenced list, Heinrich Merck is listed from Wallisellen with 6 in the party. On page 22 of Mr. Marks' work he says We are fortunate again to have document information on the continuation of their journey to the shores of the New World. It is one of the few colonies whose history can be told with some detail. The journey is told in a letter . . .which John Henry Goetschy wrote on July 21, 1735 to Mr. Werdmuller, deacon of St. Peter's Church in Zurich. One research document found by Mr. Marks shows that Hans Heinrich Merki died on the ocean voyage to Philadelphia. On arriving in Philadelphia, the oldest son, Henry Merki, testified with his "signature on the "Schiffsliste," that his mother and three brothers had arrived on the Mercury with him."

DAR Qualifier

  • See DAR Website, Ancestor #A073935, Marks, Killian
  • Service Source: Mayhill, Lancaster Co., PA Deed Abstracts & Rev War Oaths of Allegiance, P 174: PA Arch Ser 3 Vol 17, PP 619, 626-627
  • Service Description: 1) Signed Oath of Allegiance, Lancaster Co. 1778; Paid Supply Tax


  • Other information to be aware of is that this family was documented as "Merki" in Switzerland, not Merck/Mark/Marck or any other variation. For that reason, I have used both names:
  • Name at Birth: Kilian Merki
Current Last Name: Merck
Note: His name had one "L" in it at Baptism; Some time later in life it acquired the second "L."


  1. North Annville Genealogy
  2. Source: #S150


  • Thank you to John Schmeeckle for creating WikiTree profile Marck-12 through the import of Burkhalter.ged on Dec 9, 2013.
  • Created by John Wert, Dec 31, 2011

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It may be possible to confirm family relationships with Killian by comparing test results with other carriers of his Y-chromosome or his mother's mitochondrial DNA. However, there are no known yDNA or mtDNA test-takers in his direct paternal or maternal line. It is likely that these autosomal DNA test-takers will share some percentage of DNA with Killian:

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Mark-251 and Merki-8 appear to represent the same person because: Same person. Please merge. Thank you.
William Killian Merck, born about 1719, Christened 22 November 1719, Embrach, Switzerland. Died 5 November 1792, East Hanover, Lancaster, Pennsylvania.
posted on Mark-251 (merged) by Linda (Sherman) Stienstra