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Home: Regional: U.S. States: Pennsylvania: Lehigh County

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Re: Arner/ Orner family of Lehigh County
Posted by: lee eisberg Date: August 03, 2001 at 21:18:41
In Reply to: Arner/ Orner family of Lehigh County by Beth Snyder of 824

notes from the Lehigh County Historical Society in Allentown, PA

BERNHARD JACOB REX, son of Hans Jurg and Barbara Rex, was born in Germantown April
5, 1724 and died in Heidelberg April 24, 1802. Jacob and Anna Elisabeth Orner were married
May 16, 1749. She died and was buried July 22, 1785. He is the only one of the original Rex
family that has a gravestone at Heidelberg. While the name on the stone is “Bernhard Jacob”, he
was always called “Jacob”. The inscription is lengthy and contains much information:

                     Hier
                     ruben die Ge
                     beine von
                     Bernhard Jacob Rex
                     sohn des George Rex
                     everblickt das Licht dieser
                     Welt den 5ten April 1724
                     verehelichten sich den 16 May
                     Anno 1746 mit
                     Anna Elisabeth Orner
                     Lebte mit ihr in der ehe
                     56 Jarhe u zeugte 11 Kinder
                     Verliesz dieses himmelvolle Leben
                     den 25 April Ano 1802
                     in einem Alter von 78 Jahre
                     2 Wochen und 5 Tage Erlebte
                     55 Enkel und 12 Urenkel
                     Nun Vater ruhet sanft

The Orner family, or Arner family as it is usually spelled was established by Hans Ulrich Arner
who came to America with the Goebachi party on May 29, 1735. However, Anna Elisabeth
Orner was not one of Hans Ulrich’s children. It is possible that she was his sister. If the
marriage took place in the Lehigh County area, the gravestone shows that Bernhard Jacob must
have come to the area before 1746. According to Charles Roberts who complied the Anniversary
History of Lehigh County (1914) Jacob Rex received 276 acres of land from his father George on
December 20, 1749. Further, Roberts says that in 1758 Jacob was appointed a “county
commissioner” whatever that may have been in those days - Roberts does not give the source of
his information. Jacob is said to have built the original stone house on the homestead on which
the inscription “Anno 1752 JR MS” is said to be on the stone.

According to the gravestone, Jacob had 11 children and was survived by 55 grandchildren and 12
great grandchildren. All the children were born before any Lutheran records were kept at
Heidelberg, and even only one was recorded in Daniel Schumacher’s time at Heidelberg. He left
no will and there is no record of an administration at Easton, so a complete list of the children is
largely guess.


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