(Continued from Monday)


In the month of January, 1850, his disease began to increase, until March 7, 1850, at three o'clock in the morning his spirit took its leave from the body and its flight to the realms of eternal bliss, leaving the world in a firm reliance on his Redeemer, composed in his mind and sensible to all surroundings to the last and ever submissive to the Divine will, he passed from the Church Militant to the Church Triumphant above.

His body was laid away March 9, in the church graveyard in connection with the U. B. Church at Myerstown, followed by a large concourse of people, the greater number of whom mourned the loss of their friend and brother. A large number of his ministerial brethren were in attendance. Rev. John A. Sand preached the funeral sermon from Daniel 12th chapter and 3rd verse: "And they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament, and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars forever and ever."

This may seem like a long address in connection with the name of one man in these articles; but be it remembered that the foundations of his character were laid in Lebanon county and here he did his great work-he and his grandfather in large measure laying the foundations of United Brethrenism in this valley.

Rev. Christian, when in charge of the Lebanon Circuit, held meetings in the country in the homes of members. Mrs. Maria Smith, 623 Walnut street, in her 80th year, daughter of Rudolph Kreider, who lived on the Evan Shaak farm south of Avon, says that he used to preach in her father's house. The Home of Rev Martin.

Doubtless a goodly number are interested in knowing in what sort of a house the United Brethren church in this section had its origin. It stood on the identical spot on which now stands the farm house of the western farm of Henry Bomberger, along the Colebrook road at Snitz Creek. It is east of the barn, and near, a little south of, the family cemetery, which years ago was in the orchard, now in the open field. It was a long house built by the process of addition, four parts; three added to the original.

This may have been the very first Kreider domicile along Snitz Creek, the original part that erected by the "squatter." Kreider, before the Penns bought the valley from the Indians, if that tradition is correct. The address on Rev. Christian S. Kreider, it will be noted in large measure upholds the position at first taken by us in regard to the first Kreiders. Jacob who settled at Lancaster city about 1715, was the original. Of the son Martin, doubtless the one born in 1681 we had not known. Jacob the father of Martin, likely then was born as early as 1650. It was Martin's son who first came to Snitz Creek, and who blazed the trees to be able to find his way back. This must have been Jacob, father of the four sons who in 1760 divided up the 575 acres. John, the blacksmith, was his brother and was offered part of Jacob's large holdings. John took up the western part of the settlement, and built his house where Lorenzo Laudermilch's house now stands. This must all have been "squatter" business. Later, June 3, 1741, the Penns gave these "squatter" bothers warrants for land. This is the only way in which we can reconcile the traditions and the legal facts. Hon. A. S. Kreider, however, contends that the father Martin had himself first "squatted" here.

But Jacob was here before John, and Jacob's family had the eastern part of the settlement; and we are told the homestead of the eastern part was this particular farm, later occupied by Rev. Martin. So United Brethrenism would seem to have started with the oldest Kreider house of all.

The old house faced toward Snitz Creek. The main log section from the east. The easternmost part was a log kitchen, one story and not so deep as the main house. The large log part had three rooms down stairs. The room next to the log kitchen extended all the way across the main house, and was perhaps not more than onethird of its length. It was the living room. The front door was in two, an upper and lower section, like the stable doors in our barns. Mrs. Maria Smith, aged 80 years, the only person whom we have met who remembers the old house, cannot remember a fireplace; but we think there must have been a big chimney place in this room, not unlikely on the side away from the kitchen. Early colonial architecture and conveniences, it seems to us would require it. The large front room, or parlor, likely where the meetings were held, took up the greater part of the remainder of the first floor, a small bedroom being to the rear of it. The large log part was two stories high. Right west of this large part was built a brick section, perhaps when Rev. Martin's son Abraham went to housekeeping on the homestead. The brick section, also two stories, had two rooms down stairs. A frame section, one story, was built joining the brick on the west, serving as a kitchen and store room for the family in the brick section. Many of the old farm houses have attained to great length by this process of additions, the old folks semi-retiring in one part and the successor to the homestead becoming the farmer and occupant of the other.

So this is a picture of the old, likely oldest, Kreider home. Doubtless Behm and Otterbein knew the house well. We know that Newcomer and others preached here and held communion services. Doubtless they often walked into the orchard back of the house and sampled the apples. The law of Moses permitted that. Who will doubt that more than one sermon that fed and fired the little beginning of United Brethrenism in Lebanon county was prepared in the solitude by the Snitz Creek, where the soul of the preacher went up and the spirit of God came down.

But the old preachers were interested in the barn also. While the men were feeding and the women milking and hunting the eggs, the preacher would walk out to look at the barn, for he had a barn where he came from, and his own horse was in the stable, for that was the only method of travel in those days. And then many of the old preachers met their God in the haymow. It is a question whether this one was so private, for it was of logs and not weatherboard. You could see between the logs. The old thatched roof was a foot thick and had lasted for 100 years, so the barn must have been built as early as 1756 at least. Would it not be well to go back to [...] straw roofing?

Then after the work was done, all gathered about the table, richly laden with the fruits of the earth, which ever were recognized as gifts of heaven, for which hearty thanks were always given. Then often late they would discuss the welfare of Zion. Remarks were picked up by the children sitting round that later made them pillars in the church. Worship before retiring and worship again in the morning. It was a manner of life that God has greatly blessed. But the curtain must be drawn. It will do you good to retire behind it alone at times and let the world take care of itself. Other Children of Rev. Martin Who Went to Franklin County.

  • Abraham, the fifth child, settled on the homestead, most of younger children remained here. The Franklin county fever had likely died out. Let us now turn to.

    Abraham Kreider, the fifth child, m. Catharine Laudermilch, b. May 21, 1785; d. Sept. 4, 1873. They are buried in the old family cemetery on the present Lorenzo Laudermilch farm. He was a farmer on the homestead, and we have surmised that the brick part of the old farm house was built for him or his parents at this time. He is noted for having 5 daughters, no sons. They were: