Broad Valley Orchard

Main menu:

Site search




The “Wallrose Folks”

Hello All,

First, forgive me for not writing for these last two months, but I got “snowed out”.  Yes, we had quite a winter up in Pennsylvanian’s northern end of the Blue Ridge Mountains.  I won’t go into how many weeks of my life I wasted by shoveling snow.  I barely had time to get on the computer to research all that I learned about the German and Swiss settlers in and around the old town of  Wallrose in Economy township, Beaver County, Pennsylvania.  In my earlier writings I mentioned that Henry Gross, born and educated in Germany, and then immigrated to the United States in the mid-1840’s.

Henry arrived at Old Economy Village in the mid-1840’s, and soon found his way to Old Economy Village, in what is now Ambridge, Pa.  He did not stay there for long (he found their new celibacy rules to not be his cup of tea).  So, he packed up and went several miles up  Sewickley Creek to the thriving village of Wallrose.  Henry was among the founders of the small settlement and of it’s sole surviving structure – St. Matthews Church.  Henry married a local woman, Louisa Hoenig, and they had seven children.  I have done some research about these Gross spouses, noting the surnames of some of Henry and Louisa’s children’s mates:  Emerick, Otto, Amsler, Frey, Marr, all children of the local German and Swiss settlers of the Upper Sewickley Valley who all married into their community, too.

Bit by bit I’ll be learning what I can and trying to straighten out all these interwoven family ties.   I’ll continue to post snippets of the mass of material that I am finding.   I also am looking forward to traveling over to my boyhood stomping grounds this coming August.  Old Economy Village will be holding a special event.

Old Economy will be holding their third Harmony Society Descendant Days  on August 5-7.  This will be the first such event that is recognizing the contributions of the hired workers, as well as the Harmony Society members.  They’ll be sending out invitations  in June, so give them a call at 724-266-4500, to be added to the mailing list.  And you do not have to be an actual descendant; we  welcome everyone who is interested in this intriguing bit of Pennsylvania history.                               Thank You

Thom Dunn Marti



Related articles