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(Immigrants of Germany)
4. George (Jurg)
Note: The information within the section below is highly speculative and at this time we do not believe it to be true.
immigrated on 2 Oct 1741 to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.19 Found on passenger lists of
the St. Andrew:
o List A (Captain' List) "Jerich Caspr Henlen, age 17."
o List B (signers of oath of allegiance) "George Casper Heiala"
o List C, p.315 (signers of oath of abjuration) "George Caspar Hãlle"
o On both lists B and C, the lists that the individual would be
physically signing. the name is marked with (X) indicating that the
person could not write, but just signed with his mark.
o Source: Strassburger, Ralph Beaver (1883-1959), edited by William
John Hinke. Pennsylvania German Pioneers : A publication of the
original lists of arrivals in the port of Philadelphia from 1727 to
1808. Baltimore, Genealogical Pub. Co., 1992. (Also: Strassburger &
Hinke's Pennsylvania German Pioneers, 1934, by the Pennsylvania
German Society, Norristown, PA.). Via email with Arline Sarver
He was described as sponsor with wife Anna Margaretha for baptism of Peter
Spange by Daniel Schumacher on 5 Aug 1758 in Allemaengel Church, Albany Township,
Berks County, Pennsylvania.20
Listed as "Jürg Haal, elder". He was described as sponsor with
wife Anna Margaretha for baptism of Anna Magdalena Sausele by Daniel Schumacher
on 31 Aug 1760 in Allemaengel Church, Albany Township, Berks County, Pennsylvania.21
He was witness to the will of
Mathias Loy, Greenwitch Town Ship on 22 Feb 1762.17
He was naturalized on 8 Sep 1765 in Albany Township,
Berks Co., Pennsylvania.22
He owned 150 acres, 2 horses, 2 cattle, and 3 sheep, taxed at 3 [dollars] in
1767 in Albany Township, Berks Co., Pennsylvania.23
He was described as Deacon in 1768 in Evangelical
Lutheran Church, Albany Township, Berks County, Pennsylvania.24 He was described as parent with wife Anna Magdalena
of daughter Maria Sibylla at baptism on 9 May 1768 in Allemaengel Church, Albany
Township, Berks County, Pennsylvania.25
At the baptism of Maria Sibylla, George is listed as a "Reformed deacon".
His wife Anna Magdalena accompanies at the sacrament performed by Daniel Schumacher
and sponsored by George Michael Leiby and wife Barbara.
He was described as
parent with wife Anna Magdalene of son John Henry baptism on 2 Jun 1771 in Friedens
Union Church, Albany Township, Berks County, Pennsylvania.26 Named "George Haal" with wife Anna Magdalene,
at John Henry's baptism by Daniel Schumacher, sponsored by Jacob Mantz and wife
Anna Elisabeth. He was witness to will of Peter Cunfeir of "Bearn" [Bern Township?]
on 20 Apr 1774.27
witness to will of John Foos, Greenwich [Township] on 1 Sep 1775.28
He died about 1 Jul 1776.29 His will was executed on 3 Jul 1776 in Berks County,
Pennsylvania. He owned estate divided by inquest of eldest son John
Hall on 9 Sep 1788 in Berks County, Pennsylvania.29 Inquest by eldest son John Hall to divide the real
estate of his late father George Hall.
Our initial understanding of George (German "Jurg") came from the 1930-40's
research by Abram Sager Hall, who writes about George:
Immigrant from Germany, in 1741
* early member of Albany Lutheran Congregation, organized in 1747,
in the "Allemaengel", at Wessnersville, Albany Twp., Berks Co.
* Was an elder in that Albany or Jerusalem Church, in 1768.
In further research, Abram postulates:
very soon after [the birth of George Michael], the family loses
their father and his death was sudden. Cause of death not learned by
me. It was sudden because he left no will. Court appointed the
mother as Executrix and she remained a widow and raised the
unmarried children 4 (possibly 5th) and ran the farm of 20-0 or more
acres and paid taxes until she turned property over to the oldest
son, Johannes Haal. His line continued on down [and] is the
ancestral line of Cumberland, & Perry (Halls.)
A "George Casper Hall" is recorded as arriving on the St. Andrews vessel
in Oct. 1741 according to Daniel Rupp's work A Collection of Upwards of Thirty
Thousand Names of German, Swiss, Dutch, French, and Other Immigrants in Pennsylvania
from 1727-1776. This is the man Abram discovered, although one troubling
point in connecting him to our George is that the date is 18 years before the
birth of his first child (20 Dec 1756). If he immigrated at a young 17 years
of age, he is then 32 years old when his first child is born and 51 at his last.
These are not unreasonable ages on their own, but uncommon for the time and perhaps
a clue that we don't have the right man.
In Naturalizations in the American Colonies, Montague Spencer Giuseppi
lists a "George Haal" being naturalized 8 September 1765 in Albany
Township, Berks County. This is most certainly our George, since he and his family
are found here many times until at least 1804. It also lists Peter Haal taking
the same "sacrament" two weeks later, confirming one of Abram's notions
that the two brothers came on the same ship.
But why would George have waited twenty-four years to become naturalized after
immigrating? Was the opportunity not available? Was he waiting for his brother
who comes ten years later? Did they expect to return to Germany? Or might the
earlier immigrant and the new citizen be two different individuals? Giuseppi
spells both men's names "Haal", obviously German and also in the same
way we find their names in their Church records for years later. And we know
that several of George's children where born in Pennsylvania to him at least
as early as 1756. So there is some evidence supporting a delay between immigration
However it must be noted that we are as of yet far from convinced of George's
birth or immigration information. Our George may not even have been the original
immigrant, perhaps only a son of one.
George's estate is administered July 3, 1776 by Berks County since he dies without
a will. Available from the Berks County, Pennsylvania Register of Wills, they
indicate his widow Magdalena and children at the time and plan to dispurse his
property. George apparently dies within just a few days of the signing of American
Declaration of Independance.
Third Party Wills
George has also been found in the wills of three non-related individuals. The
first is the will of Peter Cunfeir, of Bearn (presumably modern Bern Township).
It lists "friend George Haal" as one of the executors of the will witnessed
by George Muller, Balser Gehr and John Bock. The abstract gives a date pairing
April 20, 1774 - May 2, 1774, implying first the signature/witness date and second
the execution date.
A second reference is the will of "Mathias Loy of Greenwitch Town Ship",
signed 22 February 1762 and proved 22 October 1783 in Berks County. It lists
"Georg Haal" as a witness to the signing of the original document along
with a Georg Spang.
The will of John Foos, apparently signed 11 September 1775 lists George Haal
and George Lay as witnesses. It is executed 19 December 1777, again after George
Estimated Age at Known Events
Birth (estimated) 1710 1720 1723 1730 1740
Immigration 1741 31 21 18 11 1
Child, Catharine 1757 47 37 34 27 17
Child, Johannes 1764 54 44 41 34 24
Child, George M. 1775 65 55 52 45 35
Death (estimated) 1776 66 56 53 46 36
George (Jurg) Hall and Anna Magdalena were married before 5 Aug 1758.20 Anna Magdalena2,15,16,30
was born before 1742. Calculated based on being married to George
in 1758. The Johannes Hench Family in America records Anna's last name
as Mertz. George (Jurg) Hall and Anna Magdalena had the following children: