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Odenkirk Family History

Currently We start with Johann Jacob Odenkirchen

Born:abt 1730 :Germany Died: abt 1789 : Berks Co PA

At Philadelphia, we have the arrival of Johann Jacob Odenkirchen, his wife and three children on the BRIGANTINE RECOVERY (31 Oct. 1771) The ships log indicated Johann Jacob Odenkirchen came over from the Palitinate region (Middle or Upper Rhine region)of present day Germany. Also in 1771, his son John Peter Odenkirken arrived in Philadelphia as an indentured servant to Daniel Clymer on Nov 1 1771 Residence was listed as Philadelphia and the term of indenture was 6 yr 10 mo and 7 days Amount L25.

Note: In the 18th and early 19th century, the term "Palatine" was used in America to describe immigrants from "The Palatinate" and other adjoining German-speaking areas. Finding an American reference to someone being from the "Palatinate" may not point to a specific place of origin, but rather an approximate location in or near western or southern Germany.

We can only speculate about why they came to America, but sometime after they arrived both sons are listed as owning farms in Berks Co. Pennsylvania. Thousands of other Germans were also attracted to the colony and, by the time of the Revolution, comprised a third of the population. The volume of German immigration increased after 1727, coming largely from the Rhineland. The Pennsylvania Germans settled most heavily in the interior counties of Northampton, Berks, Lancaster and Lehigh, and neighboring areas. Their skill and industry transformed this region into a rich farming country, contributing greatly to the expanding prosperity of the province.

Pennsylvania was a leading agricultural area and produced surpluses for export, adding to its wealth. By the 1750s, an exceptionally prosperous farming area had developed in southeastern Pennsylvania. Wheat and corn were the leading crops, though rye, hemp, and flax were also important. This may have been the attraction for our family.

The family lived for a short time (1802-1811) in Mifflin Co. bu then on May 4, 1811, George bought a farm a few miles away, over the county line in Huntingdon Co. (Henderson, later Brady Twp.) They also had a house in the town of Roxbury ( Airy Dale). The family lived on the farm until George's death in 1840 when Catherine left the property and moved back into Mifflin County. In the courthouse at Huntingdon, Will Book 4 pg 180, she renounced her right to the estate of George Oatenkirk in favor of "my son George Oatenkirk of Baree Twp, Huntingdon Co, Penna. on the 30th March 1940" She was listed in the 1850 Menno Twp, Mifflin Co census as Catherine Oatenkirk age 75.

We have an interesting family connection in the Odenkirk/Grady families. Just as simply as possible I will attempt to explain.
The George Odenkirks and William Gradys lived on nearly adjacent farms in Henderson Twp., Huntingdon Co., Pennsylvania.
I George Odenkirk had a daughter named Elizabeth and a son, Isaac.
I Wm. Grady had a son, John.
II John Grady married Elizabeth Odenkirk.
II John and Elizabeth had a son, Israel.
III Isaac Odenkirk and his wife had a son, Isaac Howe Odenkirk
III Israel Grady and his wife Sophronia had a daughter, Huldah.
III Isaac Howe Odenkirk and Huldah Grady married and had a son, Russell. Therefore: Russell Odenkirk was the grandson of John Grady and Elizabeth Odenkirk on both his maternal and fraternal side of the family. In other words, Howe Odenkirk and Huldah Grady were 1st cousins.

George Jrs' son James P Odenkirk served in the civil war- James P. Odenkirk " One Hundred and Forty-Eighth Regiment Pennsylvania Volunteers Company "G" Aug. 18, 62 Promoted. to. Commissary Sergeant, July 1, 1864. and was listed as living in New Mexico in 1898

Georg was in Mifflin County, Union Township in 1810. (p. 991) He was next in Huntingdon Co., Henderson Twp. in 1820 (pg 931/069) deceased in 1840. Mifflin and Huntingdon Counties are very close to each other.

From HISTORY OF HUNTINGDON COUNTY, by Africa Early settlers of Henderson Township mentioned were William Grady and John Dorland who both lived "up the creek." Later John Dorland sold his property to Geogre Oatenkirk, thus establishing the proximity of the two families

The following account is taken from the J. H. Beers history of Wayne County published in 1889. ISRAEL GRADY: This gentleman is a well-known native citizen of Wayne County, Ohio, having been born in Greene Township April 28, 1828. His paternal grandfather was a native of England, and immigrated to America at an early day, settling in Pennsylvania, in which State he died. John Grady, father of Israel, was born in that State, and there learned the trade of coopering. (barrel making) In early manhood he married Elizabeth Odenkirk, a native of the Keystone State, of German ancestry. They were the parents of eight Children, three of whom are now living. In 1818 Johon Grady brought his family to Wayne County, settling on a farm in Greene Township. This was then a wild, unsettled place, and the farm had to be cleared from the forest. They had to endure all the discomforts and hardships of early pioneer life, but as the farm grew in beauty and value as the result of their toil, the hardy pioneer and his wife felt themselves amply rewarded by having a good home in which to rear the children rapidly growing up within their cabin walls. Mrs Grady was the first to hear the summons of the angel of death, passing away at the age of sixty-five years. Her husband survived her until 1864, when he died at the ripe age of nearly four score. Both were sincere members of the Baptist Church of Wooster. Israel Grady lived with his father until he was twenty-seven years of age, and in his youth took his share of the labors of the pioneer. At the age of twenty-four he was married to Miss Sophronia, daughter of Josiah and Eunice (Pratt) Milbourn, and born in East Union Township, May 13, 1828. In 1858 Mr. Grady bought a farm in East Union Township, on which were but a few improvements, and here he and his faithful wife industriously and intelligently did they labor that their farm was known as the finest in the township. The first work on their farm was the planting of eighteen acres of fruit trees. Mrs. Grady's father was also one of Wayne County's pioneers, coming here from Virginia with his mother at an early day, and settling in East Union Township. In 1819 he was married to Miss Eunice, a daughter of Oliver Pratt, who came to this county in 1814. Her father died in December, 1880, aged eighty-one years. Mrs Grady was brought up as pioneer's children were in those early days. She learned to spin and weave, was instructed in household work and often worked in the fields, at such labor as she was equal to. She remained at home until her marriage. She and her children are members of the Baptist Church. In 1881 Mr. Grady and his wife left the farm which had for so many years been their home and came to Wooster, settling on a piece of land in the edge of the city, forty and a half acres of it being within the corporation limits. To get possession of this tract he had to purchase from seventeen different owners. The place was wild and barren, but he set to work to improve it with the same untiring industry which had hitherto characterized his labors. One of the attractive features of the place is a fish pond, in the excavating and preparing of which two years were spent. This, when finished, he stocked with carp, which are in a thriving condition, and on its surface a graceful swan floats. To-day this place is one of the most attractive homes in Wooster, and many visitors are drawn thither by its beauty and the attraction of a boat ride on the glassy surface of the lake. In the summer as many as 1,500 persons have visited it in a month. Mr. and Mrs. Grady have two children: the eldest, Hulda (Mrs. Isaac H. Odenkirk,) lives with her parents: Josiah M. lives on the home farm, in East Union township. The life of Mr. Grady has been one of labor, and the honorable position he has attained is altogether due to the industry of himself and his capable wife. He has always been in favor of all projects whose object was to benefit the county, and he will long be remembered as one of its public spirited and enterprising citizens. The marriage certificate written by the pastor shows the marriage date as 30th day of September 1852. The record in the court house shows 28th day of September 1852. The latter was also signed by the pastor, E. G. Brown.

In 1840 Issac Otenkirk is listed in Mifflin Co Oliver Twp (pg 2250/ 016)

Most of his children moved to Wayne County Ohio. The family moved from Pennsylvania between 1870 -1875 but Francine and Emma went to Chicago and James went to Dayton Ohio. Wm Franklins'four youngest children , John Israel, William Thomas and Jennie were born in Wayne Co OH,

Two of Issacs children a brother and sister married a Thomas sister and brother, James Odenkirk and Sarah Thomas, John Thomas and Francis Elizabeth Odenkirk

Wm Franklins son Zane moved to Aurburn Indiana.

There is a town in Germany named Odenkirchen(web site is German language)(MAP) near Dusseldorf and Cologne (Koln) Germany that has had the Odenkirkchen name since at least 1028AD We are working on compiling a brief history of Odenkirchen, Germany and looking to see if we can find a family connection there.

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Index of Names Connected to the tree

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Can you connect any of the following persons to our tree?

Alice Mae ODENKIRK b. April 03, 1929
Married : Robert Wyss YAW MARRIAGE: October 30, 1948 5 children

ODENKIRK, DOUGLAS 144-58-1432 NJ b. 1 Apr 1963 18 d.May 1993

ODENKIRK, ELEANOR 209-20-2768 PA b.15 Jul 1904 d.Jul 1984 PA Millmont, Pennsylvania 17845

ODENKIRK, JOHN 188-07-0174 PA b. 19 Feb 1893 d.May 1974 PA Lewistown, Pennsylvania 17044

ODENKIRK, MARION 180-26-5600 PA b.18 Oct 1912 d.13 Feb 1988 Harrisburg, Pennsylvania 17109

ODENKIRK, PERNA 282-16-9879 OH b.26 Nov 1920 d.Feb 1983 Canton, Ohio 44709

ODENKIRK, RUTH 287-42-9915 OH b.14 Jul 1906 d.20 Dec 1989 Mc Lean, Virginia 22101

ODENKIRK, W. 188-07-0074 PA b.14 Nov 1912 d.18 Apr 1995 Harrisburg, Pennsylvania 17109

Chester Co 1830 Census pg 209 Emmor Ottenkirk

Mifflin Co PA 1860 Menno Twp census pg 5733/235 Sarah Otenkirk

Chester Co 1860 Honeybrook Twp Census pg 198 James Ottenkirk

Chester Co 1860 Honeybrook Twp Census pg 198 David Ottenkirk

Ottenkirk, Mrs. David, 1, 192, white, female, 72, died 1901/02/27, Honeybrook,Born abt 1829

Renssellaer Co NY 1860 1 W Troy Census pg 13341/045 Jacob Odenkirk

1870 Rees Otenkirk PA

Ottenkirk, Rees, 1, 192, white, male, 64, married, died 1901/06/19, Honeybrook,Brights, PA, Born about 1837




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