In the early days of our country the temperance movement apparently had not been born or at least received little attention. Moderate indulgence in the use of alcoholic liquors was practiced with the utmost freedom and candor. Almost every large farm was considered incomplete, without its still house either for home consumption or for commercial purposes. When the minister called it was considered good form to make the treat from the jug a part of his entertainment. In those days even the illustrious Washington had his private still house and used its products in the entertainment of his guests. The manufacture and sale of liquors was then lawful, untaxed, and in most cases unabused. It was part of the spirit of the times and was very little condemned, even by the churches.
To have been engaged in the making of whiskey at that time cannot now be recalled as a blemish on anyone's character and we feel free to relate something of interest from an early Greider family.
About two miles south of Lancaster on the northern bank of the Conestoga a spring of cold water issued from the ground. Near it stood the still house of Michael Greider. In his will executed in 1794 he provided that the still house with five acres of adjacent land should be the property of his son, Christian Greider, while the farm should go to his other two sons, Michael and John. With such a small tract of land it is evident that Christian did not gain his livelihood by farming.
Here, however, comes the interesting part of the story. Before the beginning of the nineteenth century, while Washington was President, a law was passed regulating the manufacture of liquor and placing a tax upon it. Christian Greider was then about forty years of age, in the prime of life and well established in business. It is no small wonder then that he, and other local distillers considered this a piece of radical legislation and determined to beat the law if possible. We have the story, from Isaiah Wise Krider, a grandson of Christian, born June in 1830, that his grandfather thought he could evade the law by moving west, farther from the seat of government. Isaiah Krider (note change of name) lived in Logansport, Indiana, and during his lifetime made several trips east to the old homestead. We are indebted to him for a partial record of his family.
Christian Greider with his family moved to Fort Erie, in the northwestern part of Pennsylvania and there went into the distilling business. Here the whiskey makers became organized in their resistance to the revenue men, and there ensued a serious disorder known in history as the "Whiskey Rebellion." In the end Washington went there with troops and put an end to the trouble.
Washington did not make this journey as a soldier, but as President, so as to investigate conditions first hand and to settle the difficulty with as little friction as possible. It is related that the President; was approached by a resident of that region and was asked why he, as president, had come so far from home to that part of the country. Washington answered, "My friend, can you keep a secret?" "Yes, indeed," replied the native. "So can I," said Washington.
At any rate the Greiders decided that Pennsylvania was not a good place to practice their trade so they moved farther west into Ohio and finally into Indiana. Here, too, the strong arm of the law finally reached them and ruined their business of the free and unlicensed manufacture of liquor. The Kreider mind is firm and slow to change but when once the light of a new day is comprehended they become the best of converts. And so it was with our distillers. They settled down to legitimate enterprises and are now, as descendants, the same thrifty, industrious, and successful people that you may find wherever the Kreider-Greider blood flows. One of the sons is now a Lutheran minister in Indiana.
Christian Krider (changed from Greider) the original migrator to Fort Erie lies buried with his two sons and their wives in a burying ground in Bethlehem township, Cass county, Indiana. Here his troubled life and his migrations have ended. - W.A.K.
This data has been collected chiefly from the early burial grounds of Lancaster County. The names and dates here compiled will be of value to the family historian in tracing our earlier family connections.
Landisville Mennonite Cemetery
The Abram H. Greider Farm Grave Yard near Salunga.
Burial Ground along Marietta Pike West of Silver Spring.
East Petersburg Mennonite Cemetery.
Lutheran Church Cemetery, Kissell Hill, Pa.
Mellinger's Mennonite Cemetery.
Longenecker's Reformed Mennonite Cemetery.
David Shank's Farm, New Danville Pike, one mile from Lancaster.
Strasburg Mennonite Cemetery.
Kreider Burial Ground, north of West Willow, Pa.
David Hess Burial Ground, Conestoga township, south of Conestoga Center.
Marticville Methodist Cemetery.
Chestnut Level Cemtery (Old).
In the new cemetery are buried
Christian John's Farm, near Bard's Crossing, East Lampeter Township.
Place of burial unknown
Burled in Ohio.
Old Resh Cemetery, near Bird-in-Hand, Pa.
Small graveyard along new "River Road" near Shocks Mills, Pa.
Compiled by A. K. S., W. A. K.
SUSANNA ROHRER MULLER, whose daughter Susanne married my great-grandfather, Jacob Kreider, stands in a class by herself, on record as being the first woman physician in the state of Pennsylvania. She began as a midwife but her practice extended until it became general and was very large. Petite and dainty, she was a great horsewoman, always preferring a pacer for her riding-horse. On horseback she visited her patients who were scattered over a wide area.
Her interest in her profession is said to have been motivated almost entirely by her innate love for ministering to the sick and caring for the-poor and helpless. When she was called upon, no winter storm could prevent her from going forth, no dark night on a lonely forest road dismayed her, and no ordinary obstacle stood in the way of true performance of her duty.
A number of interesting incidents have been told by people who remembered very well when she was their family physician.
On one occasion she was called to York County on a serious case. (There were times when the men physicians, at the end of their resources, would say, "Send for Dr. Muller to consult.") The York County family being very poor could not pay in money so they gave the doctor a fawn for the children. She fastened it across her horse and carried it home where it was a pet of the children until it was full grown, and for years later. One day as it was in the fields with the cows it disappeared. It was thought that either a hunter, mistaking it for a wild deer, had shot it, or a wild animal had gotten it.
Another family tradition is that her husband objected to her career. Upon one occasion when she returned at the end of a snowy, wintry day, her husband said with some spirit, "Another wild goose chase." But she ddrew from her pocket a roll of bills. Tradition has it that she, wise little lady, had placed the bills in her pocket before she started out in the morning.
In 1894 Dr. Benjamin F. Miller met an aged man, Mr. Warfel, then 89 years old, who remembered distinctly of having been vaccinated by her. Since it was not until about 1800 that Dr. Jenner's discovery of vaccine was accepted by any physicians in England even, it shows Dr. Muller to have been an up-to-date, progressive little lady. The practice of vaccination had met with violent opposition at first, even in London.
Dr. Muller practiced until the time of her death. In the last fifteen years of her life she was attending physician, according to her own journal, at the birth of 1,667 children. Numbers of times in Trinity Church, Lancaster, she stood as god-mother when baby girls were given her name. She was greatly beloved by her patients.
In the Historical Association Library of Pennsylvania may be found the record of her death and burial. She died of pleurisy, Nov. 22, 1815, and the funeral was conducted Nov. 24 by the Rev. C. L. F. Endress, pastor, of Trinity church and afterward the first president of the School Board of Lancaster when the Public School Law first went into effect.
Dr. Muller was so popular and so well known that no church in the community was large enough for the funeral service, hence it was held in a grove, the estimated attendance being 2,000 people, according to Mrs. Betsy Kepperling Snyder, later of Washington, Iowa, who was present.
Today I visited the burial place of great-great-grandmother in the old Thomas Burying Ground near Byerland church in Pequea township, Lancaster Co., Pa. The thick growth of weeds and underbrush is a sad testimony to popularity during life and to the loyalty of posterity. The tombstones were lying on the ground and broken. But she needs no monument. Her fame is alive in the records of state and church. Her influence and teachings of the principles of health and right living have, like the ripples of the sea, spread to all parts of the earth.
We are indebted to Martha Alice Miller Wiles for the above information regarding a remarkable ancestor.
WILMER A. KREIDER
The 29th day of August, in the year of our Lord, 1789, I, Tobias Gryder, of the township of Lampeter, in the county of Lancaster, being at present weak in body, but of good and sound memory and understanding, do make and ordain this my last will and testament in the manner following to wit:
In primis, it is my will that all my debts and funeral expenses be paid.
Item - I give and devise unto my youngest son Tobias Gryder my land and plantation whereon I live consisting of one hundred and fifty acres more or less according to the lines marked out in the draft thereof, To hold for him, his heirs, and assigns forever, for which he shall pay one thousand pounds hand money by payment of fifty pounds yearly, beginning on the first day of April, in the year 1785, and that day yearly fifty pounds until all is paid.
Item - I give and bequeath to my beloved wife Ann one hundred pounds in hand money, the new house wherein I live, and room in the cellar and spring house; and in the kitchen and cabbage garden, as much as she chooses, one mare, one cow, two beds, two bedsteads, one chest, and as much household furniture as she may choose. My son Tobias shall give her yearly eighteen bushels of wheat, five bushels of rye, fifteen bushels of oats, five bushels of malt, one fat hog weighing 200 pounds, eighty pounds of fat beef, twenty pounds of heckled hemp, the same quantity of flax and tow thereof, and six pounds of good wool. He shall feed her mare and cow during the winter, with his own, and keep them in pasture during the summer with his own, and further give her one bushel of coarse salt, and a half bushel of fine salt, also bring home and cut small as much fire wood as she may require, and also give her five gallons of apple whiskey, and two barrels of cider, and of all the fruit as much as she may choose, and a third part of the hens and eggs.
Item - I give and devise unto my son, John Gryder, the other part of my land now in his possession, adjoining to plantation herein before mentioned, consisting of one hundred and fifty acres, To hold to him, his heirs, and assigns forever, for which he shall pay one thousand pounds hand money by payment of fifty pounds yearly, beginning on the first day of April, in the year 1785, and that day yearly fifty pounds until all is paid. And further he shall give and deliver to my beloved wife yearly eighteen bushels of wheat and five bushels of rye as long as she lives.
Item - I give and devise unto the children of my eldest son, Jacob Gryder, to wit: John Gryder, Elizabeth Gryder, Tobias Gryder, Henry Gryder, David Gryder, and Daniel Gryder, my land and plantation whereon they at present live, situate in Lampeter township on the Great Road, consisting of 136 acres. To hold to their children and assigns forever, for which they shall pay one thousand pounds hand money by payment of fifty pounds yearly, beginning on the first day of April, in the year 1785, and that day yearly fifty pounds until all is paid. And further they shall give and deliver to my beloved wife yearly as long as she lives eighteen bushels of wheat and five bushels of rye or the money thereof.
Item - I give and bequeath twenty-five pounds hand money to our congregation or meeting in Lampeter for the use of the poor.
And it is my will, and I do hereby direct and order that all my children, to wit, John Gryder, Tobias Gryder, Ann Hartman, Barbara Musser, Mary Musser, Susanna Miller, and my said son Jacob Gryder's children, in his stead, for his share, shall inherit equally, and receive equal shares, the youngest like the eldest, and none shall have any preference before the other, of, and in the lands and personal estate, except as to the monies arising out of the personal estate, which shall be divided among my four daughters and be deducted from their respective shares, and my said son Jacob's children shall have equal shares of that which comes from me to them in their father's stead.
And I do hereby ordain and constitute my brother-in-law, John Stauffer, and Jacob Hartman executors to this my last will, and testament. In witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand and seal the day and year above mentioned.
Declared, signed and sealed by Tobias Gryder as his last will and testament in the presence of,
Probated March 24, 1791.
TOBIAS (T.G.) GRYDER (Seal)
Copied by W.A.K.
Be it known that this is the last will and testament of George Greiter. To be after his death that his lawful wife shall have her choice of the three places to live in as long as she lives. Likewise it is my will and desire, that my wife after my death, should she take another husband, is to stay on the place as long as my mother lives on it. She and her husband shall have of the land and the children shall have of it.
Further it is my will and desire that of the two other places which they do not inhabit, they may make the best use as they can, up to such a time as my children may come to their maturity. They the children shall have the two places for their own use.
Further it is my will and desire that they shall divide the third of all the rents they shall have to their own use.
George Greiter has made this known and signed while in his sound mind and understanding,
With his hand and seal
March 5, 1743
T.G. TOBIAS GREIDER
Lancaster County, June 14th, Ano Dom. 1744. There personally appeared Michael Greiter and Tobias Greiter, two
of the witnesses to the above written will, and on their solemn affirmation did declare they saw and heard George
Greiter, the testator above named, sign, seal, and declare the above writing to his last will and testament, and that at
the doing thereof he was of sound and disposing mind and understanding to the best of their knowledge.
S. A. BLUNSTON, Deputy Register.
Copied by W. A. K.
Four annual reports have been prepared by the committee. Any of these can be secured from the chairman, Mr. Stauffer, for ten cents. If you write for them enclose postage.
If you can locate your ancestral line in any of these reports or, from other sources, please communicate with Mr.
Stauffer, or take it up with any of the following members of the Committee on Genealogy.
Amos K. Stauffer, 851 E. Orange St., Lancaster, Pa.
Reuben K. Light, 926 Water St., Lebanon, Pa.
Enos G. Kreider, R. D. No. 2, Christiana, Pa.
Wilmer A. Kreider, 1016 Maple Av., Sharon Hill, Pa.
Mrs. J. Wayne Aungst, Linden Av., Elizabethtown, Pa.
B. Frank Greider, 226 Marietta St., Mount Joy, Pa.
Be sure to join and support the Kreider-Greider Association.