The JONATHAN F. HOFF (who was also went by, and was known as, "JOHN F. HOFF") died in Fearing Twp. Washington Co., OH in late 1812. His will was probated there in Washington County, and I have a copy of his Asset Inventory and final accounting. If POWELL HOFF was born in Northern Virginia in 1801, as the family records strongly indicate, and he somehow moved as an infact with his parents to near Marietta, Washington Co., OH ~1805, he would have been age 11 at the death of JONATHAN/JOHN F. HOFF. Clearly, JOHN F. HOFF died in the location where POWELL HOFF lived between 1805 and 1812. JOHN F. HOFF was thought to have had a 1/2 brother, AMOS HOFF (who bought JOHN F. HOFF's clothes upon his death, stating that JOHN F. HOFF was "his brother").
AMOS HOFF was reported (by Arnold Hovey) as being one of three sons attributed from the 1769 marriage of the Rev. DANIEL HOFF and his first wife, (W#1), LAURA TITUS HOFF in New Jersey. DANIEL (and presumably LAURA) HOFF then moved south from NJ in ~1770 to Northern Virginia, Prince William County. Then, there was some form of a "transition" from W#1 to W#2, who was SUSAN SOPHIA MOFFETT, and she began having children by DANIEL in ~1775. JOHN F. HOFF, also attributed to have been born ~1775, was thought to have been a product of that second marriage. JOHN F. HOFF married a woman from Northern Virginia, and along with several other children of DANIEL HOFF & SUSAN SOPHIA MOFFETT, following the death of DANIEL HOFF in ~1801, made the treck west with their widowed mother from Northern Virginia in 1805 to Washington Co., OH. This JOHN F. HOFF lived on "Duck Creek" until his untimely death in 1812 at about age 37, leaving a widow, maiden name DUNCAN, who lived on until 1819 (I have a copy of her obituary, but it mentiones no children, nor spouse's name), and she is thought to have been buried in Mound Cem., there in Marietta, OH. No headstone survives marking her exact site of burial, but an undated record of a "widow Hoff" being buried there does survive.
Nothing certain at this point is known of the origins or life of the AMOS HOFF (1775-1855) before his death at age 80 in Dallas County, IA in 1855. He doesn't appear as a "member of the household" of POWELL HOFF in any census before his death in 1855. However, his DOB in 1775 is exactly the same date as is attributed by Arnold Hovey to the AMOS HOFF born to DANIEL HOFF & LAURA TITUS. The AMOS HOFF (1775-1855 from his headstone) was buried in the Hoff-Pararie Cem., just west of Grimes, and would have been one of the first occupants of the plot, carved out of the original homestead farm of POWELL HOFF, the family having moved there some 1-2 years earlier, in ~1853-54. Also, at age 80, and a presumed widower and very elderly at this point, it is likely that AMOS HOFF may likely at this point have been a member of the household of POWELL HOFF and wife MARTHA BREWSTER HOFF. So, from these series of facts alone there appears to be a clear and strong family nexus of some sort between AMOS and POWELL. Older HOFF family "charts" made by the grandchildren of POWELL in the early-mid 1900s show AMOS HOFF and a PRUDENCE POWELL as being the "parents" of POWELL HOFF, but other than this, there is no contemporary documentation on or before 1855 (like census records, bible entries, or tax or governmental documentation) to support or refute this.
In 1824 POWELL HOFF married MARTHA BREWSTER "in her father's house in Marietta", and this is well-documented. Following the 1812 death of JOHN F. HOFf, and the final will asset inventory of JOHN F. HOFF filed in 1813, there is no mention children or offspring nor anything other than the few assets going to his widow. I could find no Will/probate nor asset filing for her after her death, unfortunately. The obituary of his widow 7 years later likewise fails to mention any, either.
So, AMOS HOFF and JOHN F. HOFF were likely 1/2 brothers with a common father: DANIEL HOFF, and different mothers. And thus, POWELL HOFF was either the son of AMOS, or if JOHN F. HOFF was his father, then AMOS was his 1/2 uncle. If JOHN F. HOFF was the true father (as attributed by Arnold Hovey, but which is strongly disputed by BREWSTER LAMAR "Bruce" HOFF), and JOHN F. HOFF died in 1812, when POWELL was only age 11, perhaps his presumed 1/2 uncle, AMOS, may have taken over in a "fatherly role" as 1/2 uncle of POWELL, and family members merely later assumed that he was, in fact, POWELL's father, not knowing better. Alternatively, AMOS HOFF could certainly have been POWELL's father. While Bruce Hoff feels the issue is clear, and it does seem circumstantially likely, there is still no contemporary documentation to support - or clearly refute - either researcher's contention. Having spent a great deal of time looking at the issue, I have gathered no direct, conclusive evidence nor insight, either, other then my observations, above. And, until Bruce Hoff recently "weighted-in" on the issue, I had merely to this point accepted without question the relationship of the parentage of POWELL HOFF proffered by Arnold Hovey. However, which ever version is ultimately adopted concerning the father of POWELL, it would appear that the grandfather of POWELL HOFF was likely the Rev. DANIEL HOFF, who is the attributed father of BOTH JOHN F. HOFF & AMOS HOFF.
The only caveat to this, and the possible origins of AMOS HOFF is that there was a MOORE HOFF who resided on a small farm near Manassas, there in Prince William Co., Northern Virginia, and he reportedly had a son, whose name was AMOS HOFF. He was born about the same time. The origins of MOORE HOFF, who died there in about 1829 are thought to have began in NJ where all the "Dutch" line of HOFFs, including DANIEL HOFF, came from before moving from NJ to VA well before 1770. It is highly likely that there was a direct family nexus between this MOORE HOFF & the Rev. DANIEL HOFF, whose names appear on numerous documents together, indicating that DANIEL may have actually resided on the farm as a non-property owner, together with MOORE HOFF, while working part-time as a "lay" misister on Sundays. If so, one or both of the "two AMOS's", their apparent respective male off-springs, may have been named in honor of the other. It is also unknown if the AMOS HOFF buried in IA was born in NJ or VA, but if his parents were properly DANIEL HOFF & LAURA TITUS HOFF, it could have been in either location, depending upon when DANIEL and LAURA moved from NJ to No. VA, which was thought to have been ~1770. Alternatively, if MOORE HOFF was, in fact, the father of AMOS, and he was also born in 1775, then, most certainly it would have been in Northern Virginia. So, a VA birth location for the AMOS HOFF buried in Dallas Co., IA might not be dispositive of the issue.
At any rate, it is an intersting matter, and I would like to hear the views of other HOFF relatives on the issue. I am still hopeful that perhaps a dispositive contemporary document might be uncovered that might help solve some definitive the issues involved.
I would welcome any contact, as well. JOHN SCOTT HOFF <email@example.com>
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