JOHN KNAPPENBERGER FAMILY

OF ARMSTRONG COUNTY, PENNSYLVANIA

 

Johan Michael

(1709-1751)

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Conrad

(1748-1818)

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J Philip

(1783-1867)

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John

(1809-1885)

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John Jr (1831-1837)

Daniel (1833-1912) > 8 Children

Jacob (1836-1922) > 11 Children

Mary Ann (1839-1839)

Samuel Augustus (1840-1920) > 5 Children

Lucinda Ann (1843-1929) > 8 Children

Henry Clay (1846-1932) > 12 Children   KNAPENBERGER

 

 

GENERAL INFORMATION

John Knappenberger (no middle name) was born 16 May 1809 in Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania and died 12 July 1885 in Armstrong County, PA.   John is the founder of the Armstrong County Pennsylvania Knappenberger Family.  He was the son of J. Philip Knappenberger (1783-1867) who settled in Tuscarawas County, Ohio and the grandson of Conrad Knappenberger (1748-1818) of Westmoreland County, PA.  John was raised by his mother, Martha Swanger, and her husband, Peter Briney, near Spring Church in Armstrong County, PA.

 

It seems unlikely that Martha Swanger and J. Philip Knappenberger, John's father, married.  No record has been found of the marriage or a dissolution of the marriage.  Martha Swanger, born 11 August 1794 and died 17 June 1892, was the daughter of Abraham Swanger (1757-1838) and Elisabeth Wagner (1756-1832) of Westmoreland County, PA   Martha married Peter Briney about 1814 and raised John with his half brothers and half sisters: Daniel, Abraham, Mary "Polly", Margaret, Hannah and Susan who married George Rodocker and moved to Nebraska.  Peter Briney was born 10 February 1785 in PA and died 8 February 1861 in Armstrong County, PA.   Martha and Peter are buried in South Bend Cemetery, Armstrong County, PA.

 

John Knappenberger married Anna Marie HILL known as "Polly", the daughter of John Hill, Sr. and Catherine Broadsword, on 10 December 1829 in Franklin Township, Westmoreland County, PA.  Polly was born 23 July 1808 in Franklin Township, Westmoreland County, GA and died 5 August 1871 in Armstrong County, PA.  John and Polly had a farm in Clark's Hollow between Mateer and Spring Church in Armstrong County, PA.  It is here they had seven children.  Polly and John are buried in Spring Church Cemetery, Armstrong County, PA.

 

LEFT  John Knappenberger's gravemarker at Spring Church Cemetery, Armstrong County, Pennsylvania
RIGHT  Anna Marie Hill Knappenberger's, John's wife, gravemarker at Spring Church Cemetery, Armstrong County, Pennsylvania

 John  Knappenberger's children: Henry Clay Knappenberger, Lucinda [Knappenberger] Klingensmith, Samuel Augustus Knappenberger,
Jacob  Knappenberger, Daniel Knappenberger in Armstrong County, Pennsylvania, June 1912

[all photos graciously provided by Sue Appleton]

 

 

CHILDREN

 

JOHN KNAPPENBERGER, JR.  (1831-1837)

John, Jr. was born 12 January 1831 in Armstrong County, PA and died 12 February 1837 at the age of 6.  He is buried to the left of his father at Spring Church Cemetery in Armstrong County, PA.

 

 

DANIEL KNAPPENBERGER (1833-1912)

Daniel was born 12 June 1833 in Kiski Township, Armstrong County, PA and died 12 November 1912 in Oak Ridge, Armstrong County, PA.  Daniel at one time was the postmaster at Belknap, Armstrong County, PA.  Daniel married Nancy WALKER, daughter of Robert Walker and Jane Porter, on 19 February 1857 in Armstrong County, PA.  Nancy was born 14 March 1835 in Armstrong County, PA and died 10 July 1889 in Armstrong County, PA.  Daniel and Nancy had eight children.  For more information about Daniel's family - as well as photographs, please click on his name above.

 

 

JACOB KNAPPENBERGER (1836-1922)

Jacob was born 17 February 1836 and died 3 May 1922 in Armstrong County, PA.  Jacob was a farmer, carpenter and shoemaker.  He married Sarah Ann MILLER, daughter of John and Lydia Miller, about 1859.  Sarah was born 17 August 1839 and died 7 August 1894 in Armstrong County, PA.  Jacob and Sarah had eleven children.  For more information about Jacob's family - as well as photographs, please click on his name above.

 

 

MARY ANN KNAPPENBERGER (1839-1839)

Mary Ann was born 20 July 1839 and died 21 July 1839 in Armstrong County, PA.

 

 

SAMUEL AUGUSTUS KNAPPENBERGER (1840-1920)

Samuel Augustus was born 2 September 1840 in Armstrong County, PA and died 19 July 1920 in Indiana County, PA.  Samuel married Mary Matilda MILLER, daughter of John and Lydia Miller, on 10 March 1864.   Her sister, Sarah Ann Miller, married Jacob Knappenberger, Samuel's brother.   Mary was born 1 November 1844 and died 28 September 1932 in Armstrong County, PA.  This couple is buried at Spring Church Cemetery, Armstrong County, PA.   Samuel and Mary had five children.  For more information about Jacob's family - as well as photographs, please click on his name above.

 

 

LUCINDA ANN KNAPPENBERGER (1843-1929)

Lucinda was born 28 June 1843 in Burrell Township, Armstrong County, PA and died December 1929 in Armstrong County, PA.  She married Josiah Wylie Whitmer KLINGENSMITH, son of Adam Klingensmith and Anna M. Kirkland, on 22 February 1866.  Josiah was born 20 June 1841 in Parks Township, Armstrong County, PA and died 7 November 1912 in Armstrong County, PA.  This couple is buried at Forks-Zion Church, Gilpin Township, Armstrong County, PA.  For more information on this couple and their eight children, click on the name above.

 

 

HENRY CLAY KNAPPENBERGER (1846-1932)

Henry Clay also known as "H.C." was born 9 September 1846 and died 26 November 1932 in Armstrong County, PA.  He first married Elizabeth "Evaline" BECK about 1867.  Evaline, daughter of John Beck and Mary Jack, was born January 1848 in Armstrong County, PA and died 1900 in Armstrong County, PA.  Henry and Evaline had twelve children.  H.C. married after the death of his first wife to Lydia A. DELO, daughter of Jacob and Elizabeth Delo, about 1903.  Lydia  was born about 26 March 1856 in Allegheny County, PA  and died 15 April 1927 in Kiski Township, Armstrong County, PA.  She is buried in Riverview Cemetery, Apollo, PA.   When Henry and Lydia married, she was named Lydia A. Hannah and had been married previously.  In the 1930 census, Henry C. Knappenberger was 82 years old, widowed, and living with his grandson, John Coulter and his family, in North Apollo, Armstrong County, PA.  H.C.'s obituary reads in part "Mr. Knappenberger, a pioneer contractor and one of the first men to help erect buildings in Vandergrift ...".  H.C. Knappenberger is buried at Riverview Cemetery, Apollo, Armstrong County, PA; however, he does not have a grave marker.

 

Henry Clay Knappenberger and Lydia A. [Delo]] Knappenberger

... on the reverse is written, "Uncle Hen & Aunt Lydia"

[photo graciously provided by Dorothy Hamilton Knepshield]

 

1. Mirta Ella Knappenberger known as "Ella" was born 16 July 1869 in Armstrong County,PA and died in 1905.She  never married and lived in North Braddock, Allegheny County, PA.

 

2. Vinnie A. Knappenberger born 8 September 1870 and died September1896..  She married William E. BURNS, son of Thomas C. and Evaline Burns, on 26 February 1896 in Westmoreland County, PA.  William was born 2 March 1876in Armstrong County, PA  and died 15 April 1902 in Apollo, Armstrong County, PA. He is buried in Apollo Cemetery.  They had one child.

 

a. Leon E. Burns was born 8 September 1896 in Westmoreland County, PA..  He was living with his widowed father, William Burns, in his grandparent's household in the 1900 census.  He continued to live with them (Thomas C. and Evaline Burns) in the 1910 census in Washington Township, Westmoreland County, PA at the age of 13. Leon died 22 October 1915 when he was hit by a train while walking along the track north of the Kiski Junction.  He was buried in the Apollo Cemetery.

 

3. Mary "Etta" Knappenberger was born 19 March 1872 in Apollo, Armstrong County, PA and died 10 September 1927 in North Braddock,  Allegheny County, PA.  Etta had a son named John COULTER.  Later Etta married John McANALLEY, son of John McAnalley and Anna McGrann.  John McAnalley  was born 18 March 1880 in North Braddock, Allegheny County, Pennsylvania and died there on 8 September 1945.  Etta and John are buried in Monongahela Cemetery, Allegheny County, PA.  John McAnalley was living as a widower in North Braddock, Allegheny County, PA in the 1930 census along with a nephew, Earl Knapenberger (age 21), and Earl's wife, Margaret (age 21).  Earl Bright Knapenberger was the son of Bert Knappenberger, brother of Etta.

 

a. John Coulter was born 26 June 1891 in Apollo, Armstrong County, Pennsylvania and died 13 February 1951 in Warren County, PA.  He married Cynthia HUBERT, daughter of Jacob L. Hubert and Mary Catherine Beighley.  Cynthia was born 17 April 1894 in Westmoreland County, PA and died 26 February 1981 in Armstrong County, PA.  John and Cynthia had six children.

 

Eugene B. Coulter was born 3 August 1912 and died 7 August 1944 in France while fighting with the U.S. Army.  He is buried in Brittany Cemetery, France.  Eugene was married to Hazel L. SNYDER, daughter of Howard and Winifred Snyder.  Hazel was born about 1918 in PA.

 

Henrietta G. Coulter was born 18 August 1914 in PA.  She married Clinton W. MARTIN who was born 17 February 1912 in PA.  They had 3 daughters.

 

Woodrow Wilson Coulter was born 15 December 1916 most likely in Canton, Stark County, Ohio and died October 1974 in PA.  He married Gladys I. STONE, daughter of William Henry and Matilda Stone.  Gladys was born 16 November 1921 in Armstrong County, PA and died January 1981.  They are buried in Riverview Cemetery, Apollo, Armstrong County, PA.  They had a daughter.

 

John L. Coulter was born 26 February 1920 in PA and died 5 May 1995.

 

Arthur L. Coulter was born 15 March 1924 in PA and died April 1967.  He had a daughter.

 

James Hubert Coulter was born 2 May 1925 in PA and died 12 February 2000.  He married Betty O. CLAYPOOLE who was born on 22 January 1927 in Vandergrift, Westmoreland County, PA and died 12 May 2003 in Highlands County, Florida.   They had a son.

 

4. Lucy Edna Knappenberger was born 7 February 1874 in Armstrong County, PA and died 19 December 1944 in Armstrong County, PA.  She married Andrew Arthur McDERMOTT who was born 1878 and died 1949.  They are buried in Riverview Cemetery, Apollo, PA.  They had twins: Estella G. McDermott (born 22 July 1902) and Arthur G. McDermott (22 July 1902 - 18 June 1986 in Michigan).

 

5. John Lester Knappenberger born 19 March 1876 in Armstrong County, PA and died 4 December 1951 in Venango County, PA.  He married Pearl "Clara" HARTMAN, daughter of Joseph Hartman and Mary Miller, on 23 April 1895.  Clara was born 3 July 1878 at Poke Run, Westmoreland County,   PA and died 3 March 1937 in Vandergrift, Westmoreland County, PA.  They had four children.

 

a. William Knappenberger was born about 1896  and died prior to 1900.  He is buried in Riverview Cemetery, Apollo,Armstrong County, PA.

 

b.  Paul G. Knappenberger born 21 June 1898 in Armstrong County, PA and died 1 September 1898.  He is buried in Riverview Cemetery, Apollo, PA.

 

c.  Harold Lester Knappenberger (Sr.) was born 30 May 1900 in Westmoreland County, PA and died 23 January 1992 in Jefferson County, PA.  He married Ruth R. SMITH, daughter of Rev. Alfred Smith and Lucinda Bartlett, who was born 19 October 1899 in Mercer County, PA and died 21 December 1989 in Jefferson County, PA.  Harold was a minister.  This couple had two sons who also became ministers:  Harold Lester Knappenberger, Jr. and Lyston R. Knappenberger.

 

d. Bernice Rozella Knappenberger was born 29 November 1906 in Westmoreland County, PA and died 12 February 1987 in Westmoreland County, PA.  Bernice never married.  She is buried in Greenwood Memorial Park, Lower Burrell, Westmoreland County, PA.

 

6. Tizarah E. Knappenberger born 13 November 1878 in Armstrong County, PA and died 17 January 1905 in Allegheny County, PA.  She married John Amos LEIDY, son of Levi Leidy and Lucinda Cover.   John was born 13 November 1878 in Jackson Township, Cambria County, PA and died 1904 in Braddock, Allegheny County, PA. Tirzah is buried in Monongahela Cemetery, North Braddock, Allegheny County, PA.   They had one son.

 

a. Leo E. Leidy was born 1 May 1904 in Allegheny County, PA and died October 1973 in Walnut Creek, Contra Costa County, California.  The early death of his parents left Leo an orphan who was raised by his aunt and uncle on his father's side in Cambria County, PA:  Mary C. (Leidy) Ley and Jacob Ley.   Leo is listed as 6 years of age, nephew, living in their household in the 1910 census and is listed as 15 years of age in the 1920 listed as Leo Ley.    In the 1930 census, he was living in Vandergrift, PA with his uncle, John L. Knappenberger, and working in the steel mill   Leo married Ella Mae Magnet who was born about 1919 in PA..

 

7. Harvard Knappenberger known as "Harvey" born 4 September 1880 in Armstrong County, PA.   He most likely died as a young child or man.  Nothing further is known of him at this time.

 

8. Frank Knappenberger was born 5 March 1883 in Armstrong County, PA.  He died sometime after 1905 when he was listed as a surviving sibling when Tirazah died.  Nothing further is known of him at this time.

 

9. Earl Lewis Knappenberger was born 30 March 1885 in Armstrong County, PA and died 25 September 1971 in Westmoreland County, PA..  He married Stella Grace HOOVER, daughter of Labana Hoover and Malissa Birch, about 1912.  Stella was born 26 July 1884 in Saltsburg, PA and died 7 January 1956 in Leechburg, Armstrong County, PA.  Stella had been married previously to a Mr. Clark and brought her two daughters to the marriage: Wilda M. Clark (1903-1965) and Ethel A. Clark (1904-1963).  Earl and Stella then had a daughter of their own and adopted a son.

 

a. Leatha Jane Knappenberger was born to Earl and Stella on 29 April 1915 in Freeport, Armstrong County, PA.  She died 24 March 2002 in Indiana County, PA.  Leatha married William Walter COLE, Sr., son of Albert Eugene Cole and Elizabeth Detar, on 23 November 1921.  William was born 2 June 1909 in Irwin, Westmoreland County, PA and died 26 November 1983 in Apollo, PA.  They had two sons: William Walter Cole, Jr. (5 September 1933-29 April 1986) and Eugene Earl Cole.

 

b. Donald Carl Knappenberger, who was adopted by Earl and Stella, was born in 21 January 1929 in Butler County, PA and died 8 November 2006 in Erie County, PA.   He married Martha A. McEWEN, daughter of Arch R. McEwen and Della Eliza Conrath, on 17 January 1949.  She was born 27 December 1929 in the Pine Runn area of Allegheny Township, Westmoreland County, PA  and died 3 June 2009 in Erie, PA.  They had four children: Sandra Lee Knappenberger, Dorothy Jean Knappenberger, Donald Eugene Knappenberger and Robert Earl Knappenberger.

 

10. Albert Knappenberger known as "Bert" was born 1 April 1887 in Armstrong County, PA and died20 Jan 1910 in Franklin County, PA.  He is buried in Monongahela Cemetery.   He  had a son with the daughter of Charles DETTIS and Sarah Dettis.

 

a. Earl Bright KNAPENBERGER was born 12 April 1908in Allegheny County, PA  and died 21 July 1981 in Forsyth County, North Carolina.  He was raised by his maternal grandparents, Charles and Sarah Bettis, in Trafford, Westmoreland County, PA for the first couple years of his life.  By the 1910 census, Earl was living with his uncle and aunt, John McAnalley and Mary Etta McAnalley, in North Braddock, Allegheny County, PA as an 11 year old.  Earl Bright spelled his last name with one "p" - according to his social security application.  His social security application noted his father was Bert Knappenberger but did not list his mother

 Earl first married Margaret M. [maiden name unknown] who was born30 January  1909 in Pennsylvania and died20 October 1963 in Allegheny County, PA..  Earl and Margaret were living in North Braddock, Allegheny County, PA in 1930 with his uncle and aunt, John McAnalley and Mary Etta McAnalley.  Margaret Knapenberger is buried in All Saints Braddock Catholic Cemetery.  Earl and Margaret had one child: Marietta Knappenberger who married a Mr. MEYERS.  Earl later married Thelma WARD of North Carolina who was born 18 September 1911 and died 23 April 1996 in North Carolina.

 

11. Bright Knappenberger [twin of Bert] was born 1 April 1887 and died 1908.  The twins, Bert and Bright, along with their sisters, Tizarah and Mary "Etta", are buried together in Monongahela Cemetery located in North Braddock, Allegheny County, PA.

 

12. Maggie Mae Knappenberger was born 1 August 1890 in Armstrong County, PA and died 14 February 1956.  She married Benjamin William CRAMER, son of George Cramer and Sarah Williams, on 26 May 1909.  Benjamin was born 26 December 1890 in Rathmill, PA and died 14 June 1949.  Maggie later married Gideon Michael HECKMAN, son of James Blair Heckman and Barbara Ellen SCHALL on 1 September 1951.  Gideon was born 4 February 1873 and died 1 October 1961.  Maggie Mae and Ben Cramer had eleven children.

 

Maggie Mae Knappenberger Cramer Family, Late 1940s

Maggie and Ben Cramer are sitting in front with all eleven of their children behind them.

‚Äč

[photo graciously provided by Gloria Cramer Shand]

 

a. George Henry Cramer was born 5 December 1909 in Armstrong County, PA and died there on 12 October 2001.  He married Clara Wilhelmina BROOKS on 2 October 1928.  Clara was born 20 October 1909 and died January 1980.   They had five children:  George William Cramer (28 July 1930-26 December 1990), Robert Cramer (13 June 1933-30 May 1986), Shirley Marlene Cramer, Carl Wayne Cramer and Charles Cramer.

 

b. Martha Lou Etta Cramer was born 2 December 1911 and died 23 September 1982.  She married Dean Edward FRANK, Sr. on 2 June 1928.   Dean was born 19 August 1911 in Armstrong County, PA and died 17 December 1989. They had two children:  Dean Edward Frank Jr. and Larry Clyde Frank.

 

c. Lydia BenElla Cramer was born 7 December 1913 and died 23 February 1983.  She first married William Carl HEPLER, son of E.F. and Mary Hepler.  William was born 6 September 1904 and died 16 August 1954.    They had 4 children:  Geraldine Mae Hepler, Kenneth Eugene Hepler, Patricia Larue Hepler and Martha Ann Hepler.  She later married William Garret SPROULL who was born 11 November 1896 and died 25 March 1989.

 

d. Frank Sutton Cramer was born 9 December 1915 and died 15 August 1916 in Armstrong County, PA.

 

e. Hal C. Cramer (Sr.) was born 10 July 1917 and died 8 March 1997 in New York state.   He first married Isabelle HELD on 15 July 1936 and had two children:  Hal C. Cramer, Jr. (23 January 1937 PA - 30 November 2006 MA), and David Cramer (16 April 1943-31 December 1948).   He later married Norma Jeannette REIMER, daughter of Walter J. and Lillian M. Reimer, on 27 May 1952.  They had two children:  Kim Cramer and Melody Ann Cramer.

 

f. Charles Albert Cramer was born 26 March 1920 and died 9 April 2005. He married Vivian HEPLER on 22 October 1955.  This marriage ended in divorce.

 

g. Thomas Dean Cramer (Sr.) was born 19 March 1922 in North Apollo, Armstrong County, PA and died 10 November 2008 in Kittanning, Armstrong County, PA. He is buried in Riverview Cemetery, Apollo, PA.  He married Margaret Elizabeth RIPPLE, daughter of George Waddell Ripple and Ruth N. Baker, on 16 January 1940.  Margaret was born 19 July 1924 and died 23 February 1989.  They had 8 children:  Ruth Mae Cramer (8 June 1940-14 November 1987), Donna Lee Cramer, Thomas Dean Cramer, Jr., Eileen Faye Cramer (24 May 1947-28 December 2002), John Cramer, Tina Cramer, Vonne Cramer, and Elaine Gaye Cramer (died 1967).

 

h. Estella Geraldine Cramer was born 3 April 1924 in Armstrong County, PA and died 10 December 2005 in Erie County, Ohio.  She married Francis Leonard STAHL, son of Josiah W. Stahl and Mary Daniels, on 1 June 1945.  They had 3 children:  Joyce Ileen Stahl, Karen Lynne Stahl and Frank Leonard Stahl, Jr.

 

i. Maggie Mae Cramer was born 1925.  She married Wallace Leech HUNTER, Sr., son of William C. Hunter and Mary Alma Beltz, on 29 August 1946.  Wallace was born 21 February 1921 and died 2 February 1995.  They had 3 children:  Judy Ann Hunter, Wallace Leech Hunter, Jr., and Jo Ellen Hunter.

 

j. Benjamin Dwight Cramer known as "Buck" was born 25 January 1930 in Apollo, Armstrong County, PA and died 31 May 2011.  He married Virginia Strickland SUMNER, daughter of Merton R. Sumner and Velma A. Robinson, on 21 August 1951.  Virginia was born 16 August 1929 in Branford, CT and died 14 October 2009 in New York.  This marriage ended in divorce.  They had three children: Gloria Dawn Cramer, Benjamin Dwight Cramer, Jr., and Hugh Cramer.  Buck later married Barbara SLATTERY about 1982; Barbara was born 27 December 1939 and died 18 December 2008.

 

Benjamin Dwight "Buck" Cramer

[photo graciously provided by Gloria Cramer Shand]

 

k. Keith Edward Cramer was born 21 August 1932 in Apollo, PA and died 17 February 2011 in Westmoreland County, PA.  He married June Shirley MARSH on 11 March 1954.   They had 4 children:  Daniel Keith Cramer, Sheryl Ann Cramer, Tracey D. Cramer and Wendy Beth Cramer.

 

 

SPECIAL THANKS

Marie J. (Knappenberger) Wilson, Worthington PA

Edith Smith, North Apollo PA

Valjean Artman Summerhill, Vandergrift PA

Richard Heckman, Ocala FL

Gertrude Murphy Keirn, Westmoreland County PA

James M. Knappenberger, Mountain View CA

Mindy Knappenberger, Kittanning PA

Dorothy Hamilton Knepshield, Apollo PA

Bonnie Stone, Ohio

John Darwin Knappenberger, Orlando FL

Alvin Swanger for his help with the Swanger research

 

"A Family Record of Jacob and Sarah Miller Knappenberger from 1749 to 1944", compiled and arranged by Howard Vernon Hamilton of Vandergrift PA, was a great source of information.

 

If you would like further information related to this family or would care to share information, please contact us jsappleton@windstream.net.