Recently returned from holidays in Lancaster County PA with regards to the CANADIAN RAYMERS starting with Abraham Raymer and Magdeline Groff.
I spent a day at the Mennonite Information Centre in Lancaster. Here are a few of the tidbits I found.
Abraham was born in Mount Joy, Lancaster County PA on Aug 15, 1760. The name Mount Joy of course is the named used to christen the new home in Markham Ontario.
After marriage to Magdeline Groff, he and his wife moved to Dauphin County.
We wanted to see if we could find the old farm(land). There was an old letter on file from a Jonas Ramer of Baden Ontario. In his letter he referred to his Ramers (Abraham and Magdeline Grove) coming from "Belaire, north east of Elizabethtown"
We found a copy of a Journal notes of a John E Reesor who made a trip back from Ontario to Pennsylvania in 1854. In the letter he left a few clues.
"On Thursday morning (1854) we left Benjamin Lehman's near John Reesors for Jacob Lehmans, a distance of eight miles, arriving at noon. From Lehamns over the Conewago Mountains, we saw such rough land. I could hardly see the land due to the rocks and the stones. I am not surprised that old Ramer (Abraham) and the Lehmans left such land for Canada...."
"On Friday morning, we left for Lebanon County, arriving at John Reesors by noon. We passed the farm where father Abraham Grove foremerly lived, also the farm where Ramers lived. Then we came to Abraham Reesor who owns a mill on the Conewago Creek. We then visited a farm where my father was born. Here there is a Spring of the best water in all our travels."
By pulling out some old maps and comparing them to today we were able to get bearings. Mount Joy is only a few Kms from Elizabethtown. From Elizabethtown it is agian only a few kms to the "junction" that is still called Belaire.
Just down the road a km or so from the Belaire junction, is the old Abraham Risser (Reeser) Farm where you can still see the remains of an old mill on the Conewago Creek. Across the road is the Old Jacob Risser Farm (previously owned by Jacob Ebersole), known for its water Springs. Finally right next to it is the Coble Farm now owned by Daved Coble. The Coble Farm has been in their family for 200+ years but it was concluded that the Raymers were neighbours and that they bought and incorporated their neighbours farm (the Ramers) into theirs. On follow-up this idea was confirmed in an article in the Mennonite Joural from 1964 who claimed that the old Ramer farm was the then J. Ira Coble Farm (David's Father). As well Magdeline Groff's family came from just down the road. (Showing what made Abraham move from Mount Joy... about 20 kms away)
There has always been some confusion with old Ramer Docs as to exactly where the Raymers came from. Some documents claim that the Raymers came from Lancaster CO, others Daugpin CO and others still mention Lebanon CO. Turns out that this orginal homestead was ACTUALLY Dauphin CO BUT the land ACTUALLY is on the corner of ALL 3 Counties and the farm spreads over and into all 3 counties. SO all of the docs are correct.
Was an interesting day.
One last note... we now have in our possession the original family Bible of Abraham and Madelines son Abraham Ramer and Veronica Lehman. In it, it says that Abraham Romer and Magdelena Groff were married in Staad Pennsylvania, the 13th day of April 1785."
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