Notes on the Marshalls of Berwick Twp., Adams County, PA


The pioneer ancestor of the Marshalls of Berwick was "Frantz Marshall" who arrived in the Port of Philadelphia on September 15, 1749 aboard the Ship Phoenix, with passengers principally from Wurttemberg, Zweibrucken and Nassau. This ship, of which John Mason was Master, is said to have carried 550 passengers although only males over twenty-one years of age were recorded on the ship's list. On the list, Frantz's name is marked as having been "written by another". Frantz was sometimes entered as Franz, and sometimes as Francis, in later records (his son sometimes wrote his own name as Francis and Frantz but never as Franz).

There is uncertainty as to the nationality of Frantz, the pioneer. The Conewago Valley Historian John Timon Reily (who did much of his writing late in the nineteenth century) at first felt that he was French, then German, and finally Alsatian (from Alsace-Lorraine; the region west of the Rhine between France and Germany). Many of his neighbors were French and he and his son were close Friends of the French Sulpicians. On August 29, 1885 Fr. H. P. Griffin, a Sulpician, wrote to Reily:

"... Francis Marshall I knew well. ... He was not French. I always considered him of German origin, probably from Alsace. ... There was a priest of the same name, Francis Marshall. He was educated at Mt. St. Mary's but was ordained at the Dominican Convent, Perry County, Ohio. I was present at his ordination in 1824 or 1825 ... What relation he bore to Old Francis or Frantz I do not now remember."

This would have been in reference to Francis, Jr. since Francis, Sr. died in 1802.

Frantz Marshall was listed as a farmer owning 150 acres in Brecknock Twp., Berks County in 1767. He and his wife moved westward to Berwick Twp., York County, about 1773. Reily states as a certainty that Frantz had at least four sons, Francis, Jr., Peter, Joseph and John and probably a fifth named Jacob (he others little documentation, but J. P. Keffer says he has "found substantiation for practically all of his statements and, only rarely, contradicting facts"). One likely source of Reily's information would have been "Aunt Kitty" Marshall (1811-1898) of Edge Grove, a daughter of Jacob Marshall (a son of Joseph Marshall, born in 1786), who had kept house for her uncle, Fr. Francis X. Marshall.


Children of Francis (Frantz) Marshall, Sr:

Francis Marshall, Jr.

Born - circa 1755

Died - 25 April 1835

Married - Margaret Staab (daughter of Adam Staab) who died 31 Dec. 1831


Rev. Adam Marshall, S.J. ?

  • Margaret (married John Chambers in 1796
  • Catherine (married Mathias Timmins c .1814) who died 16 Jan 1828
  • Possibly a second, unidentified son (1790 census)
  • Peter Marshall, Sr.

    Born ?

    Died - 1819 (will recorded in Gettysburg in Will Book C. No. 848, dated 22 Apr. 1819, Peter, Jr. and Henry Hemler were named executors, settled 23 Dec. 1823)

    Married -Anna M. Klunk who died 4 Oct. 179


    Peter, Jr. (married Catherine Kemp in 1810) died in 1834 (in ill health, he shot himself)

  • John (married M. Maria Wierick in 1811) who died in 1814
  • Margaret (married Richard Adams) who died before 1819
  • Elizabeth (married Mathew Martin in 1797) who died before 1819
  • Mary (married Henry Hemler)
  • Anna (married Joseph Shafter)
  • Catherine (married John Hemler) baptized 21 Oct. 1791 after the death of her mother
  • John Marshall, Sr.

    Born - circa 1755

    Died - 18 Oct. 1850 (from grave marker in Conewago Cemetery, also reads "about 95 years of age)

    Married - Mary (or Maria) Will who died 7 Feb. 1861, "about 95 years of age"


    John, Jr. (married Elizabeth Will in 1821) was born in 1788 and died in 1863

  • Peter, little is known except that the Historian, J. T. Reily, said that he "went West".
  • Samuel (married Susan Filler) was born 28 Nov. 1797. He died 26 July 1825.
  • Note: According to the Baptism Records for Conewago Chapel, published by the John Timon Reily Historical Society, on 7 January 1798, Francis Marechald and Margaretha Grandadam were the sponsors at the baptism of Samuel Marechald, son of John and Maria Marechald. It is also interesting to note that Adam Grantadam and Francois Grandadam had arrived in Philadelphia on board the Ship Phoenix along with Frantz Marshall in 1749.

    In his book, Catholic Colonial Conewago, J. P. Keffer states "the Conewago register shows that ... Samuel, born November 28, 1797 and baptized a few days later with his "Grandparents," Francis and Margaret Marechald as sponsors." Did Mr. Keffer have access to the original register (written in Latin) and misread Grandadam as Grandparents ? Or was the opposite error made when the register was translated onto file cards (from which the J. T. Reily Historical Society prepared their very useful book). Since the former error seems more likely that the later, for the present I presume Grandadam is correct .

    Joseph Marshall

    Born - circa 1755 (based on his age at death having been 93 years)

    Died - 20 Feb. 1848 (a will and codicil thereto, dated 23 May 1838) have been found in Gettysburg, which identify his children).


    1st Margaret Heagy ["of Lancaster Co., a convert, - the Heagys owning the Shriver-Bender farm (Lord Baltimore grant 1733), adjoining the Samuel Lilly I land, Conewago Chapel and the Schriver-Dellone-O'Bold mill farm", J. T. Reily]

  • 2nd ? Chambers
  • 3rd Eva Sterner
  • Children

    • Peter, born 1783, married Catherine Felix prior to 1814, settled in Wayne County Ohio in 1827 (later moved to Knox County).
    • Rev. Francis X. born circa1783, died 16 Aug. 1861
    • John, born 20 Aug. 1784, married Theresa Kupser, and died 17 Sep. 1851.
    • Joseph, born in 1785, was a brother of the Society of Jesus
    • Jacob, born in 1786, married Margaret Dellone, and died 1 Sep. 1865
    • Margaret, born 27 Oct. 1791, became a Visitation Nun in 1817.
    • Adam married Elizabeth McClain and died in 1863. His will is on file at Gettysburg, No. 3924, John Ginter, Executor.

    Other possible children of Frantz Marshall:

    In his book, Catholic Colonial Conewago, J. P. Keffer states that J. T. Reily was certain that Frantz Marshall had at least four sons, Francis, Jr., Peter, Joseph, and John and probably a fith named Jacob. Mr. Keffer goes on to write that he "found nothing to verify his supposition that Frantz Marshall had a son Jacob, while there are decided probabilities that he did have two additional sons named Nichols and Michael."

    Primary Sources:

    Catholic Colonial Conewago, c 1965, John Poist Keefer

  • Conewago Chapel Death and Burial Records 1752-1979, c. 1980, J. T. Reily Historical Society
  • Conewago Chapel Baptism Records 1790-1890, J. T. R. H. Society
  • Conewago Chapel Marriage Records 1796-1883, c 1980, J. T. R. H. S.
  • Conewago Cemetery Burial Report, 11 Aug 1988, received from Basilica of the Sacred Heart of Jesus (Conewago Chapel), Edgegrove, PA, October 1990
  • A Collection of Upwards of Thirty Thousand Names of German, Swiss, Dutch, French and Other Immigrants in Pennsylvania, Prof. I. Daniel Rupp, 19276. "Pennsylvania German Pioneers from Original Lists, Vol. I, 1727-1775", Strassburger, PA German Society, Norristown, PA, 1934
  • Pennsylvania German Pioneers from Original Lists, Vol. I, 1727-1775, Strassburger, PA German Society, Norristown, PA, 1934
  • Conewago Cemetery Burial Report, 11 Aug 1989 (from Basilica of the Sacred Heart of Jesus (Conewago Chapel), Edgegrove, PA
  • Last Will of Peter Marshall, Sr., 19 February 1819, copy received February 1991 from Adams County, PA, Register & Recorder of Wills
  • Last Will and Testament of Joseph Marshall, dated 7 August 1832, and a Codicil to it, dated 23 May 1838. Both were filed in Adams County, PA on 6 March 1848
  • Last Will of John Felix, 11 Jan 1815, Book C, #373, Adams County, PA
  • Catholic Trails West, Volume 2, Edmund Adams and Barbara Brady O'Keefe, 1989

  • Last updated 15 November 2003

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