HERBAL AND SPIRITUAL HEALER
LIEUTENANT COLONEL REVOLUTIONARY WAR
Johann Peter Seiler (b. Johann Peter Zeyler) was born in Ittingen, Germany in 1721. He was the son of Andreas Zeyler (Seiler) and Maria Catharine Zeyler (Seiler). Andreas Zeyler (Seiler) was the son of Benedict Zeyler (Seiler) and Maria Elizabeth Zeyler (Seiler). According to the ship's manifest, Peter Zeyler (later Seiler) arrived in Philadelphia, PA on 9 September 1738 on the ship "Two Sisters" along with his older brother Dietrick Zeyler. They were orphaned in Germany. The list of passengers was prepared by the ship's captain, James Marshall. Peter Zeyler (Seiler) arrived in America as an indentured servant and worked off the cost of his passage. Sometime later, Peter Seiler settled near Johann Wilhelm Phillips at what is now Phillipsburg, New Jersey. Being unable to procure certain herbs and roots any nearer than on the property of Peter Raub, Peter Seiler concluded to move to the Pennsylvania side of the river and settled in Raubsville, PA. along the Delaware River. He was assigned the rank of Lt. Col. during the American Revolution by virtue of his medical expertise. At about that time, he gained the honorary title of Doctor. Dr. Peter Seiler was the most esteemed medical practitioner in the Forks of the Delaware region. His reputation as a doctor was known throughout the colonies. His "curative skills" were respected from Massachusetts to the Carolinas. Dr. Johann Peter Seiler was acclaimed by the Delaware (Leni-Lenape) Indian tribes as "The Great Pow-Wow." The word derives from the Narraganset word powwaw, meaning great spiritual leader. He was regarded by the indians as a doctor of such great skill that his powers to heal the sick and infirmed were attributed to his consultation with supernatural forces. It was said that he never asked for a fee from any Native American. Food and animal furs were given to him as payment in full for his services. He wisely sold these products at the Philadelphia marketplace for "handsome sums." Both his son and grandson became respected physicians in the Delaware River Valley region as well. During the Revolutionary War, Dr. Peter Seiler served in the First Battalion of the Northampton County Militia. It was commanded by Colonel George Hubner in June of 1777. Three of Dr. Seiler's sons served as privates during the American Revolution.
TAKEN FROM: THE RESEARCH OF; Donald R. Repsher, of Bath,PA. Paper read by W. J. Heller, President of the Northampton County Historical Society, at a meeting of the Historical Society of Bucks County. From "The Book Shelf Scrap Book of Easton and Northampton County," Vol. 1, pages 64ff, located in the Marx Local History Room, Easton Public Library, Easton, Pennsylvania.
By 1779, Dr. Joseph Seiler owned 200 acres of land in and near present day Raubsville, PA. He acquired additional acreage throughout the remainder of his life. His tombstone is adorned with a Hexenfoos. It is inscribed at the top with a compass type adornment. Other symbols are inscribed near the top as well. The tombstone is still in very fine condition. He died in 1803.
Information from: Cynthia H. Smith Blog. December 3, 2013.
About 1745, Peter Seiler married Anna Margartha Maurer. Anna Margartha was born in Germany and arrived in America at the age of nine with her parents, Jacob and Margaret Maurer. They arrived in Philadelphia May 29,1735 aboard the ship "Mercury", captained by William Wilson. They resided in Greenwich Twp., NJ. The children of Peter and Anna Margartha Maurer Seiler are named in his will. They had been the parents of 10 children, nine of whom are mentioned in his will. They were Anna Maria, Frederick born in 1748, Elizabeth born in 1750, Anna Maria born in 1752, Johannes Daniel born in 1753, Susanna born in 1760, Veronica, Catharine, Jacob born in 1767 and Dr. Peter Seiler, Jr. born in 1770 (see below).
The inscription, written in German, on his tombstone in Raubsville Cemetery, Raubsville, Williams Township, Northampton County, Pennsylvania says he was the father of 4 sons, 6 daughters, 63 grandchildren, 48 great grandchildren and two great, great grandchildren. He was born September 26, 1721 and died January 8, 1803 having lived a good life of 81 years, 4 months and 15 days. From her tombstone we learn the maiden name of Anna Margaretha. In German it says "Geborne Maurerin" which tells us that she was a daughter of a man named Maurer. She was born January 19, 1726 and died July 23, 1810, having lived 84 years, 6 months and 4 days.
Strassburger & Hinke, "Pennsylvania German Pioneers", Published 1934 by the Pennsylvania German Society, Vol. I, pp., 209-212, Lists 54 A, B, and C.
Pennsylvania Archives, Fifth Series, Vol. VIII, pg. 80.
Records of Old Williams Township Congregation Church, Marx Room, Easton Public Library, Easton, PA.
Estate file: #2210, will book 4, pg. 121, Northampton Co. Courthouse, Easton, PA.
The History of Raubsville, PA.
Heindel, Ned D. Hexenkopf: History, Healing and Hexeri, Easton, PA; Williams Twp. Historical Society.
Blair, Williams T; Shoemaker, J. I. (Jacob I.), b. 1839
Shoemaker, Michael, 1715-1780; Shoemaker family.
Publisher: Scranton, Pa. : International Textbook Press
Children of Dr. Peter Seiler, Jr. (1770-1862) and Anna Margaret (Laubach) Seiler (1770-1856):
I. John David Seiler (1795-1881). married Mary Osburn.
II. Catharine Seiler Swetland (1799-1863). Married William Swetland.
III. Isaac Seiler (1801-1842)
IV. Abraham Seiler (1803-1844).
V. Rosanna Seiler Carpenter (1803-1888). Married John Carpenter.
VI. Anna Margaret Seiler Stocker (1807-1893). Married William Stocker.
VII. Dr. John Peter, III (1809-1868). A bachelor.
VIII.Anna Maria Seiler (1811-1811).
IX. John Seiler (1817-1817).
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