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

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Osman / Osmun of Northampton / Lehigh County, PA
Posted by: Bill Lee (ID *****5797) Date: May 07, 2006 at 19:28:04
  of 824

Looking for connections to a John and Rebecca Osmun, who lived in Northampton and Lehigh Counties, PA.

I have for John Osman b. August 30, 1770, NJ. d. June 7, 1828, Macungie, Lehigh County, PA.

and Rebecca (maiden name unknown):
b. Abt 1776/1777, NJ or PA. d. After 1860, PA.
Enumerated in 1860 in the Lehigh County Alms House, age 84, born in PA. I don't know when she died, or where she is buried. I'm guessing that she probably died shortly after the 1860 census, and that she was actually born in New Jersey, not PA, although I may be proven wrong on this.

Date of marriage: before 1803.

At the Orphans' Court proceedings in 1829, John is said to have left "ten children" but I can only find six for sure, and possibly eight:

1. John Osman, Jr. b. November 25, 1803, New Jersey, d. June 19, 1884, Allentown, PA. Buried in the Union / West End Cemetery. Married Eliza Strauss (August 15, 1811-June 28, 1888), of South Whitehall Township, in Macungie on August 23, 1829, Rev. Daniel Zeller. According to censuses, he was born in New Jersey. 1880 census of Hanover Township says he was born in PA with both Parents born in NJ. Had several jobs, including laborer, lock tender, and hotel keeper, and book agent. Was the Coroner of Lehigh County from 1875 to 1878.
According to his three 1884 obituaries, he was born in New Jersey, but came early to Macungie. Says he had owned various hotels around the county. Also, that he left behind a wife and 8 grown children: Tilghman, Andrew, John J., George W., Jacob, Flora (wife of James Ross, of Mauch Chunk), Rebecca (wife of Milton Walt, of Allentown), and Bella, single. A son Richard drowned in the flood of 1862. No parents (or siblings) are mentioned in his obituary, but the death records of the Zion Reformed Church in Allentown have the comment "S. of John and Rebecca".

Five other children are named in the Orphan's Court records: Abigail, Rebecca, Sarah, Catherine, and William. Abigail and Rebecca are over 14, and the rest of the children were under 14. The guardian selected for Abigail and Rebecca was Jonas Faust. Catherine's guardian was Jacob Shuler of Macungie Township, and for Sarah and William, John Bellas of Bethlehem Township, Northampton County, was selected. This is interesting. The Bellis and Osman families were definitely not neighbors: maybe this is a hint of a family connection. The Bellis's also came from NJ but I have not been able to find any definite relationship between the families.

2. Abigail married Solomon Trisler / Trissler / Drissler, sometime before 1843. In 1850, they are living in South Whitehall Twsp. Lehigh County, PA, along with several children and a Rebecca "Ausmen", age 73, b. PA. Abigail's age is given as 40. They moved to Illinois sometime after that. According to the IGI, she died on January 23, 1890 in Naperville, DuPage County, IL.

3. Rebecca is probably the same Rebecca Ossman who married Ruben Breifogel of Maxatawny, Berks County, on August 7, 1831, also by Rev. Zeller. The Breifogel's moved to Ohio, where Rebecca died in 1873 at age 60.

4. The card files at the Lehigh County HS have 3 marriages for a Sarah Osman: Daniel Gangewer, of North Whitehall, in 1840 or 1841, performed by Rev. (Jeremias?) Schindel; Nathan Sell, of North Whitehall, December 29, 1844 by Rev. Zeller; and Henry Kichlein of Lower Nazareth, Northampton County, on December 8, 1846, by Rev. (don't know which) Jager. An 8-year-old Daniel Gangewere is listed in Sarah and Nathan Sell's household in the 1850 census so I assume that two of the Sarah's are the same one. The dates I have for Sarah are February 1, 1816-January 5, 1887, from her stone in the Jordan Reformed Church Cemetery in S. Whitehall Towship. For more on the "third" Sarah, see below.

5. Catherine Osman (my direct line), b. August 6, 1818, PA, d. May 30, 1897, Allentown, PA. Buried in Union Cemetery, Allentown. Married Israel Trexler, Jr. in 1838, son of Israel Trexler and Hannah Ott, b. 1817, d. 1885. In 1880 census of Hanover Township, Lehigh County, PA she gives her place of birth as PA, with both parents born in New Jersey. Her 1897 obituary says that she is the daughter of John and Rebecca Osman, of Whitehall, "long since deceased".

6. William Osman, b. October 13, 1821, d. June 29, 1898, Allentown, PA. I haven't succeeded in finding an obit for him. Married Lovina Bernts(Berndt) on March 31, 1844, by the Rev. Jager.

Two other Osman's in the area, that might be children of John and Rebecca:

7(?). Samuel Osman, b. about 1797, d. Nov. 25, 1836, South Whitehall Township, Lehigh County, PA. Married Maria Magdalena Miller on August 27, 1818. His children are inconsistent as to Samuel's place of birth. Sometimes it is NJ, other times it is listed as PA.
The Orphan's Court proceedings of 1838 have six children for him at the time of his decease: Reuben and Eli, over 14; and Peter, John, Thomas, and Sarah, under 14. The petitions for the four younger children are presented by Polly Osman, evidently that's the name Maria Magdalena Osman went by. The guardians appointed for Reuben and Eli were Paul Miller and William Miller, respectively. I assume these are relatives of the mother but have not researched this. John Marck was appointed for Sarah, John Roth for Peter, Henry Newhard for Thomas, and John Osman for John. I don't know if this is the same John Osman Jr. above, but if so, it is the only solid evidence I have of a connection between this Samuel Osman and the Osman's above.
I think this Sarah is the same one who married Henry Kichlein above. Sarah, Peter, and John moved back(?) to New Jersey and are living in Franklin Township, Warren County, in the 1850 census. Peter married Elizabeth Mackey, daughter of John and Sarah Mackey, and died sometime after 1910. His stone in the Musconetcong Valley Cemetery has no date of death cut in it, but the date of birth is given as November 29, 1829. John married Margaret Mackey, possibly a sister to Elizabeth above; he died in 1909 in Newark, NJ.

8(?). Elizabeth Ossman and Joseph Roth/Rhodes of Macungie were married by Rev. Zeller on August 10, 1827. They are living in Illnois in 1850, where Elizabeth's age is 44 and her place of birth is NJ. They disappear after this though.

9(??). Catherine Osman Trexler's 1897 obit in the Lehigh Register lists two surviving siblings: the William mentioned above and "Mrs. Rev. Deemer, of Chicago." I have had absolutely no luck tracking down this sibling. As mentioned above, two Abigail Osman Trissler and Elizabeth Osman Rhodes moved out to Illinois, so perhaps this is one of them. Abigail is supposed to have died in 1890 and her husband in mid-1889, so I doubt this is her.

So those are the children/possible children I have been able to find for John and Rebecca. There are at least two more that I'm missing.

A William Osmun left an estate in 1818 in North Whitehall Township, Lehigh County, PA. The administrator was John Osmun, probably John Sr. The estate records are on microfilm at the LCHS, beginning with file #326; William's is #322, so I wasn't able to find his file at there, and I haven't been able to get down to the court house to look for it. A mention of the final settlement was made on the microfilmed records at the LCHS but it did not mention anyone other than John Sr. and did not specify a relationship. Who is this William Osmun??

I haven't found out exactly when the Osman's came over from New Jersey - John Osman is listed in the 1810 census of Whitehall Township, Northampton (now Lehigh) County, and the 1820 census of Macungie, Lehigh County, so I assume that the family moved to PA sometime between 1803 and 1810. The 1800 Census of NJ would be of great help, but unfortunately that has been "lost".

Unfortunately, I haven't been able to find a single record of any of the children of John and Rebecca attending any church. Samuel baptized a few kids at the Egypt church, and John Jr. baptized one of his at the Egypt church and some at the Zion Reformed Church in Allentown. But there does not seem to be any record of the baptisms of the Osman siblings. The church records of New Jersey from the post-Revolutionary period (at least, the ones I 've been able to find) haven't helped. There are Osman's in northern Hunterdon and southern Warren Counties in NJ during that period, but I haven't been able to connect.

A Daniel Osman appears in the 1820 census of Lower Saucon Township, Northampton County, PA. The Lower Saucon church records have a Daniel and Anna Osmun baptizing 2 sons on Dec. 25, 1817; a John, b. March 5, 1815 and Isaac, b. June 9, 1817. The parents were sponsors. A Daniel "Osburn" and wife Anna baptized a Betsey Osburn, b. Jan. 25, 1823, bp. Nov. 28, 1823, at the same church, and again the parents were the sponsors. I think this name got morphed into "Osburn/Osborn" in a few other places. The March 1, 1848 issue of the Easton Whig and Journal has a death listing for a Daniel Osburn, age 63 years. The March 7, 1850 issue has an obit for a Mrs. Anna Osborne, who died "in the 65th year of her age." I have located their graves in the Easton Cemetery and the name on the stones is definitely Osmun, not Osburn/Osborn.

       I don't have a marriage or a maiden name for Anna Osmun. There is a baptism at the German Ev. Luth. Church for Peter Bellis on Dec. 8, 1811, parents George and Mary, where the sponsors are Daniel "Osben" and Anna Bellis. An Anna Belles (no father listed) baptized Sallande, b. Feb. 28, 1809, bp., March 22, 1810 at the First Reformed Church in Easton, PA. The sponsors were Peter Snyder and wife Elisabeth. The September 18, 1844 issue of the Whig and Journal has a death listing for "Salinda, daughter of Daniel Osborne, aged about 30 years". Could this be the same as Sallande? I wonder if this Anna Bellis and Anna Osmun are the same person.

       Interstingly, the John Bellis mentioned above (Guardian of Sarah and William Osman, children of John and Rebecca) had a sister Anna Bellis, b. Feb. 16, 1785. This would make her age 65 in 1850, when Anna Osborne died at age 65. I don't have any evidence that these two are the same person, however.

       More interstingly, on the same day that Anna Belles baptized Sallande, a John and Rebecca Osburn sponsored Margaret , b. Nov. 16, 1808, bp. March 22, 1810. I have not succeeded in finding a Margaret Osburn/Osmun in any further record, however. John Osman's 1810 census entry does not list a female child under 10.

So that is what's I've been able to dig up about the Osman's. If anybody has anything else to add, please let me know, always willing to share info.

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