Research on Henry F. Kaiser (1835-1906) for Kaiser Family Tree
Henry and Mary Kaiser and their children
(click for more photos, pages 1,
Here are some of my notes and links gathered in researching my
Great-Great Grandfather, Henry F. Kaiser (1835 - 1906).
Currently we have some interesting information on him, but none on who
his parents were, so he is the dead-end in tracing our
Any further information would definitely be appreciated.
Details and Leads (confirmed and unconfirmed)
- name: Henry F. Kaiser (what is the 'F' for? Is the 'F' from his father's name?)
- born: Mar 23, 1835 (in Alleghany City, PA)
- died: Dec 20/26?, 1906
(Family Bible data says 12/26,
tombstone says 12/20)
- Siblings: 1 brother and 3 sisters, all died in their early youth.
Don't know if they were older or younger, but since HFKs mother died
when he was young, they may have been older.
- Sequence of known events in HFK's life
- His parents supposedly emmigrated to the US shortly before his birth.
Not sure from where, though, in the 1900 census, Henry F. says
his parents were born in Germany. (first time we've found that!)
- Born Mar 23, 1835 in Alleghany City, PA.
- Grew up in Alleghany City, PA.
- Went to a German school in Alleghany City, conducted by a Lutheran
church until he was confirmed, at about 14.
- When he was 14, worked for a farmer (Adam Walters) for a year, then ran away.
- Stayed with his father for about a year, then ran away
- At 15 or 16, joined the Merchant Marine as a seaman.
First voyage was from Philadelphia to Liverpool, on the ship "Annie."
Served on a number of different ships over 9 years.
- Spring 1861: As he was traveling from NYC to Pittsburgh, passed through Lewistown, PA
where he enlisted in the Logan Guards.
- Interesting bit: The Logan Guards and others of the "First Five Companies"
went through Baltimore during the great riot of 1861.
(see Samuel P. Bates'
History of the Pennsylvania Volunteers, 1861-1865
for a description of this riot against the "First Five Companies"
volunteer units marching through, and their critical role in early
defense of Washington D.C. against rebels troops across the Potamac)
- (served in various units, re-enlisting at least once - add more details later)
- Discharged from the first service July 29, 1861, and re-enlisted August 5, 1861
- Treated in the general hospital at Newport, RI for 3 months in the spring of 1862
- Discharged honorably from the second service at White Oak Church (where?)
on the 6th of January, 1863, by reason of blindness.
- After that discharge, he "started off on a tramp, and finally reached
Columbus, Ohio. Then I turned back and came to Harrisbury, where I
enlisted in the Veteran Reserve Corps."
- (I have very little info on what happened between Jan 1863 and his marriage in Mar 1868)
- After his Civil War service, he 'mostly' lived in the area of
Mont Alto and Fayetteville, PA (Franklin County)
- Married: Mar. 4, 1868 to Mary Elizabeth Black, (b. Apr 20, 1845 - d. Mar. 21, 1906)
- Their children were:
- Amanda-Jane Kaiser, b. Mar 7, 1874, d. Jan 17, 1875 (died as infant)
- Harry Albert Kaiser, b. Nov 3, 1876 (Green Township, PA), d. Feb 18, 1953 (Mont Alto PA)
- Janet A. 'Nettie' Kaiser, b. Jan 15, 1880, m. Saul Kaufman?
- Hulda M. Kaiser, b. Jan 11, 1883, d. Feb 4 1883 (died as infant)
- Died on Dec 20/26?, 1906
(Family Bible data says 12/26,
tombstone says 12/20)
What do we know about Henry's Parents and Siblings?
- Emmigrated to the US in 'about 1835'
- Lived in Alleghany City, PA. no mention of living anywhere else in the US.
- HFK says "After coming to this country, my parents always lived in Alleghany City/"
- At least one address was: "on the corner of Chestnut and Main St., Alleghany City"
- HFK's father was a tailor by trade.
- HFK's mother died when he was young, no memory of her
- Not sure when HFK's father died. He said he had written to him but received
no responses. May have died at any time after HFK ran away to sea.
- We now have contact with 2 of Janet Kaiser's decendants.
See what they have.
- See if I can find obits or death records for any of the following.
See if any relatives have them. They might have good info on HFK, and would
be good to have in any case.
- Henry F. Kaiser (1835-1906)
- Mary Elizabeth Black (4/20/1845 - 3/21/1906), try Fayetteville area?
- Janet A. 'Nettie' Kaiser (1/15/1880 - ?)
- Harry A. Kaiser (11/3/1876 - 2/18/1953)
- Emma (Wingerd) Kaiser (9/26/1876 - 2/4/1969),
- Look for obits or death records of HKF's siblings or mother
in Alleghany City records. See if the address of "on the corner of
Chestnut and Main St." is any help. Date range for death would probably
be 1835 - 1850.
- Might find death or naturalization records for HFK parents or siblings
in Alleghany City, or birth records for siblings if HFK wasn't the
youngest. (if he was youngest, the others would have been foreign-born)
- From the National Archive papers I have, scan or
transcribe useful details, particularly dates and locations, his unit, etc.
Consider posting complete scans of the docs.
- Post photos from Ellen Shaffer of HFK and family.
Done. Here they are.
(We may have 1 more)
- Check box of photos from Mom.
- Parents, Siblings, Alleghany City
- Could check Alleghany County, PA census records for HFK and his parents.
perhaps on the 1840 or 1850 census. Look for address on
Chestnut and Main St., Alleghany City, Pa.
- Would there be any Alleghany City business listings mentioning HFK's
father, who was a tailor? (probably only if he had his own business)
- Is there an AC historical society who would know where AC docs are?
- Emmigration leads:
- One family story says that HFK was born 3 days after his parents arrived
in the US (from Germany perhaps?). If true, that should make it
easier to determine what ship they emmigrated on and to find their names,
but so far we haven't been able to locate them for sure on any ships'
passenger list. Since he was supposedly born in Alleghany City, it is
probably unlikely that the 3 days is strictly true. Not sure where this
family story came from.
- Find out what entry port is closest to Alleghany City, PA, where HFK was born.
- Search ship passenger lists for Kaisers to that port around his birth date.
- HFK's Marriage / Wife's background questions:
- Amy's tree says that HFK's marriage was "in Allegheny City,PA."
is that known/confirmed? if so, how?
- Consider how I could search on Mary Elizabeth (Black) Kaiser to find more
info on both of them.
- Where did Henry and Mary get married? Where did they live afterwards?
- See if I have any more info on his marriage. If location, perhaps that'll
help find census, marriage or other records.
- Civil War Questions:
- "Treated in the general hospital at Newport, RI for 3 months in the spring of 1862"
... would there be any medical records that might have additional details?
- Find out why the docs also mention his re-enlisting in the 49th Regiment, Company E.
Find info on the 49th.
(Bates on the 49th)
- Using his unit information, check civil war sites for more information about HFK.
- See if any resources list recipients of the medal HFK received.
(probably not helpful)
- Could search census for Harry Albert Kaiser (1876-1953) or for Janet A.
as children to see if it has more info on their parents, then work back.
- Search census info for Fayetteville, PA (Franklin County) for
Henry, Harry, Janet or Elizabeth (after their marriage date)
- His pension application mentions that he was a merchant seaman for a
time. Does that help in any way? crew lists perhaps? Probably not.
He was on a number of ships, and may not have given any more info than
he'd given during his deposition.
- Note: check my spelling of Allegheny vs HFK's docs. Correct spelling is
Allegheny, and I've been using Alleghany
sometimes. See if it's my mistake or if some use the other spelling.
- 1870 Census:
Henry and Mary Kyser, with Christina Black
Year: 1870, Pennsylvania, Franklin Country, Guilford township, Quincy PA post office
Enumerated July 28, 1870. Lines 34-36.
- line 34, Kyser, Henry, age 33, male, white, "Works in Ore? (One?) Bank"
- line 35, Kyser, Mary, age 30, female, white, keeping house
- line 36, Black, Christina, age 60, female, white, boarding
- Hit: This looks to be Christina Black, mother to Mary E. (Black) Kaiser
- Read/write columns are checked on each. Not sure if a check means "can"
or "can't" read and write.
- 1880 Census:
Henry and Mary 'KASER' (with son Harry and daughter "Jennett") in Fayetteville.
Year: 1880; Census Place: Fayetteville, Franklin, Pennsylvania;
Roll: T9_1131; Family History Film: 1255131; Page: 191D;
Enumeration District: 96; Image: 0386. Lines 41-44.
||Father's Birthplace||Mother's Birthplace|
|Henry KASER ||Self ||Married||Male||White||35||PA||Farm Laborer||PA||PA|
|Mary KASER ||Wife ||Married||Female||White||35||PA||Keeps House||PA||PA|
|Harry KASER ||Son ||Single||Male||White||3||PA||-||PA||PA|
|Jennett KASER ||Daughter||Single||Female||White||3M||PA||-||PA||PA|
- Issue: HFK's age is listed as 35, which would make his birthdate
1845, whereas other sources all list it as 1835.
- Issue: HFK's parents are listed as born in Penna, whereas his
deposition says they emigrated in 1835. (lazy entry? data from neighbors?)
- Note spelling used here: Jennet=Janet, Kaser=Kaiser
- Considering the other matches in dates, names and that we know they
lived here at this time, these are probably just errors.
- 1890 Census: not yet found.
- 1900 Census: Henry, Mary, Harry, Emma, Lawrence and Stella Kaiser
Need to download details. Stella is on next sheet from the rest.
- Looking for the location HFK said his family lived
"on the corner of Chestnut and Main St., Alleghany City",
I found what might be it in an 1872 map. That is late enough that HFK's
father was probably long-dead by then.
Details from the Pension Application Testimony
- Born in Alleghany City, Pa
- resident of Guilford Township in Franklin County as of 4/8/1878,
post office address at Mont Alto (Iron Works)
- His address is Blacks Gap (5 miles from Mont Alto) as of 1884
- Enlisted in the Logan Guards at Lewistown, Pa. (3 month service)
- The Logan Guards were later merged into Company "B," 25th Regiment, Pa Vols.
- Re-enlisted 8/1861 in Company E of the 49th Regiment of Penna Vols, commanded by Capt. Amos W. Wakefield
- Honorably discharged at White Oak Church on 1/5?/1863
- Treated in the general hospital at Newport, RI for 3 months in the spring of 1862
- Afterwards he was in the Veterans Reserve Corp.
- Occupation after his service was as a laborer
- HKF: "I went to school when a lad, and attended a German school in
Alleghany city. The school was conducted by a Lutheran church. I attended
this school until I was confirmed in the Lutheran church, at the age of about
14 years. I kept bachelor's hale with my father, on the corner of Chestnut
and Main St., Alleghany City. My mother died when I was quite small, and
I have no recollection about her. I had one brother and three sisters, but
they all died in their early youth. My father was a tailor by trade.
When I was 14 years of age, I was sent to work for a farmer by the name of
Adam Walters, who lived about 12 miles up the Alleghany River, close to Deer
Creek. I worked for Mr. Walters for nearly one year. Walters whipped me and
I ran away from him. Then I stayed at my father's for about a year, when I
left and went to sea. Father and I had a falling out, and I ran away from
him and shipped."
- HKF: "I was about 15 or 16 years of age when I first went to sea. I was in
the merchant service, and my first voyage was from Philadelphia to Liverpool,
on the ship "Annie."
- HKF: "I was a sailor on a merchant vessel for nine years prior to my enlistment...
I left my ship which was 'The Cultivator' early in the spring of 1861 at
New York City. I set out on foot for Pittsburgh, Pa. When I was at
Lewistown, Pa., in Mifflin County, they were organizing a company for the
war (3 months new) and I enlisted."
- HKF: "After leaving "The Cultivator," I started to tramp to Pittsburg, with
the intention of taking a steamer to New Orleans, and there shipping again.
That was in the spring of 1861. When I reached Lewistown, Pa. I heard the
martial music, and enlisted in the service. I had been in Lewistown but a few
days when I enlisted and joined the Logan Guards, which, or part of which,
was merged into Company "B," 25th Regiment, Pa Vols."
- Q: "After your discharge from the first service, where did you go?"
HKF: "I went back to Lewistown, where I remained for about 5 days. I was
discharged from the first service July 29, 1861, and re-enlisted August 5, 1861,
for three years or during the war. I was discharged from the second service
on the 6th of January, 1863, by reason of blindness."
- Q: "Then where did you go?"
HKF: "I started off on a tramp, and finally reached Columbus, Ohio. Then I
turned back and came to Harrisbury, where I enlisted in the Veteran Reserve
- Q: "Have you any relatives living in that vicinity (Alleghany City) or elsewhere?"
HKF: "None that I know of. My father and mother emigrated to this country
in about 1835. My brother and sisters are all dead, and I know of no
relatives living in this country. After coming to this country, my parents
always lived in Alleghany City."
- Mentions that he was with the Logan Guards as they went through Baltimore
during the great riot of 1861.
- The Logan Guards were later organized as part of the 25th Regiment of Penna Volunteers.
- HFK says at one point that he was in Company B, not Comp. E of the 25th Regiment.
Both Company B and E are referred to in the depositions. It looks like
there was a documented transfer from E to B on on 7/26/1861.
- His father was a tailor
Here are a few scans of documents, obituaries, etc., as well
as links to information that is definitely about my family. They give
some interesting additional information. If you have more related docs -
particularly obituaries, please send me a scan, text/doc/html file or link.
Online Resources for this Research
- Alleghany City (& Pittsburgh) Resources
- Historic Pittsburgh,
(good FAQ) good searchable digital library of maps, census data, books, etc
- Historic Pittsburgh - Maps Collection
- 1872 - Atlas of the Cities of Pittsburgh, Allegheny, and the Adjoining Boroughs
- WPGS Library (Western Pennsylvania Genealogical Society)
- Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh: Pennsylvania Records & Directories, Pennsylvania Department, good info on where to find records for Alleghany City
- Rootsweb: Allegheny County, PA Genealogy
- Rootsweb: Alleghany, PA
- Allegheny River Family Archives
- Three Rivers Genealogy
- Allegheny County, Pennsylvania -- Cemetery Tombstone Inscriptions & More
- Franklin Country, PA Resources
- Various Pennsylvania Resources
- Civil War Service Resources
- Pennsylvania Civil War Soldiers
- PA Genealogy - Rosters, Pension Rolls, Draft, Diaries, Flags,
Regimental Histories, Biographies. (must pay to access data, free trials available)
- How to Locate your Civil War Ancestor
- Samuel P. Bates' History of the Pennsylvania Volunteers, 1861-1865
- Carlisle Military History Institute:
Civil War Unit Bibliographies
- U.S. Census Collection Browse page (searchable)
- Genealogy.com free 14-day census trial
- Historic Pittsburgh Census Schedules(includes Alleghany City, 1850-1880)
- Allegheny County, Pennsylvania, in the war for the suppression of the rebellion, 1861-1865
not much of use here.
- General Resources
- Surname-based Resources
- Web Sites at RootsWeb -