This map shows Philadelphia in relation to Moncton, New Brunswick
Our earliest ancestors to come to North America were three German-speaking families from southwest Germany near the River Rhein in the mid-1700's.  They came to Germantown, Pennsylvania (now part of northwest Philadelphia) and later, in 1766, departed for Monckton Township in what was then part of the British colony of Nova Scotia (now Moncton,
New Brunswick).

The City of Philadelphia bordering on the Delaware River.
The current boundaries of Philadelphia correspond to the original County of Philadelphia seen below. Today's downtown core corresponds roughly to the original City of Philadelphia.

Philadelphia 1712 Townships

In 1749, Captain John Randolph sailed the Lydia from Rotterdam in the Netherlands, via Cowes on the Isle of Wight, England onward to Philadelphia, arriving on Oct. 9, 1749.  The ship was carrying passengers from the Palatinate, the survivors of whom would often become indentured servants in Philadelphia until they had worked off the cost of their passage.  One of the passengers was Carl Schantz whom we believe to be the same Johann Carl Schantz of our family tree.
Thirteen days earlier Jacob Trites (Treitz, Treuz) likely arrived in Philadelphia on the ship Dragon and later,
around 1750, married the widow Maria Christina Gmelin whose family came from Württemberg.
 The Schantz, Treitz and Sommer families likely all originated in the Baden region of Germany west of the Rhine, and in Pennsylvania lived in or around the Township of Germantown, the boundaries of which correspond today to Philadelphia city wards 9, 22, 59 and 12 (see map below).  Today this includes the neighbourhoods of Chestnut Hill, Mt. Airy and Germantown. 
The upper end of Roxborough Township (ward 21 today), near Barren Hill, is where Matthias Sommer was living when naturalized in 1765 (a year before setting sail for Monckton Township).  Carl Schantz also resided in Roxborough.

City wards

The marriage of Matthias Sommer and Christina Null was recorded at St. Michaelis Evangelical Lutheran church in 1749 in the heart of the old City of Philadelphia, as were the baptisms of their two daughters, Anna Catharina and Eva Magdalena. 
Carl Schantz and Margretha Linz were also married there in 1752. Their two daughters Anna Margretha and Catharina Elisabeth were baptized at the church on the day of the families' departure to sail to Monckton Township on Apr 26 or 27, 1766.

St. Michaelis 1859
St. Michaelis Evangelical Lutheran Church
, formerly in the heart of old Philadelphia,
Built 1743, demolished 1872

"On the Southeast corner of Fifth and Cherry St. The grounds bounded on the south by Appletree Alley."
Photo by Frederick De Bourg Richards, March, 1859
(not to be reproduced without permission from the Library Company of Philadelphia)
St. Michaelis 1867
Photo from 1867 in the John Moran Photograph Collection at the Library Company of Philadelphia (not to be reproduced without permission from LCP)

St. Michaelis ca 1830
Watercolour by William L. Breton ca 1830 from Historical Society of Pennsylvania (not to be reproduced without permission from HSP)

The oldest Lutheran Congregation in Pennsylvania was St Michael's Lutheran Church in Germantown founded ca 1728.  Johannes, the first son of Carl and Margretha Schantz, was christened there in 1753 (establishing the likelihood the family lived in the Germantown area).  It is likely that Jacob and Christina Treitz attended this church as well since 2 of their children's baptisms were also recorded there.

St. Michael's Lutheran Church of Germantown
St. Michael's Lutheran Church of Germantown at the corner of Main and Phil-Ellena Streets, Germantown.  This photo ca 1900 may not be the original building since there have been three successive buildings housing the congregation at this site.
(photo by Moses King from "King's Views of Philadelphia. Illustrated Monographs. Part 1",  copyright 1900 by Moses King)

These were pre-revolutionary times, and to support settlement in the northern colonies the Crown (King George III at that time) would grant large tracts of land to Companies who would act as land agents to contract settlers.  One such business was Benjamin Franklin & Co. with land agents John Hughes and Anthony Wayne.  Our three ancestral families signed John Hughes' contract, agreeing to sail to Monckton Township, land from which the Acadians had been evicted some years before. 

Articles of agreement 1766
The last page of the Articles of Agreement as reproduced in Les Bowser's book "The Search for Heinrich Stief" (Nimbus Publishing Limited, 2001)

The Philadelphia phase of their lives ended when the Schantz (anglicized to Jones), Treitz and Sommer families, along with the Stief and Lutz families under contract with Benjamin Franklin & Co. and 6 other families contracted by two other companies, boarded Captain Nathaniel Shiverick's sloop, the Lovey, on Apr 26 or 27, 1766 and set sail to settle in Monckton Township in future
New Brunswick.

Interesting Links:

1) The Philadelphia GenWeb Archives.
2) The Palatine Project.  Insight into the Palatine German migration with immigrant passenger lists.
3) Paces in Time: Historical Documentation of Place in Greater Philadelphia. Excellent site from Bryn Mawr College with a huge archive of historical images and links.

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Site maintained by Norman Franke. Last modified February 25, 2009