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Our Early Known History


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  Peter Webner (b. abt 1780, d. 1846) came with his brother, John, from Austria when they were young men, probably in the very early 1800's. Peter settled in Dauphin County, Pa., but John went west, and we know no more of him.

  Peter married Margretha* Waltz (or Walz), daughter of Boaz, about 1810, and one report has them setting up housekeeping in Lebanon, Pa., where Margretha was raised. Published history reports that the union had 14 children, but the only known list (see Helen Davidson's note) includes eleven.

David Webner

  David was christened May 28, 1831 at the Zion Evangelical Lutheran Church in Jonestown, Lebanon County, Pa. Margretha died in 1839 and Peter in 1846 (perhaps in Carlisle, Pa.). At that time, the family apparently split up, with David moving into the home of William Reed in Churchtown, Monroe Twp., Cumberland County, Pa. Sisters Catherine and Mary also lived together nearby at the time of the 1850 census.

  David apprenticed to Mr. Reed as a tailor, and united with the Church of God on November 19, 1849. He moved to Mechanicsburg, in Monroe Twp., then to Smithville, Wayne County, Ohio, in 1852 where he worked at tailoring for William Peters and E. H. Gilbert.

  David married Charity Walton, of the Byberry Waltons, in 1854, and moved to Knox County where he opened a ready-made clothing store, probably one of the first in the area. He later returned to Smithville and opened a clothing store there. When the railroad came through about a mile south of Smithville, David established a hack line (short-distance cargo hauling) from Smithville to the Fort Wayne Railroad Station which began the family's long history with railroading.

  David died in 1873 of "neuralgia of the heart" after a long illness. This event forced Charity to take over the hack line and to sustain a family of five children aged 11 months to 17 years as a single parent. When the eldest son, Gilbert, was married in 1881, the hack line was given to him. The other sons also learned telegraphy and were engaged in railroading for at least parts of their careers.

  Charity passed away in 1913, revered throughout the community for manner in which she raised and educated her children (all completed high school) with strong Christian principles for which Webner's are still known.

*The spelling has been seen as Margreta, but Margretha was somewhat common in that era. She eventually accepted the English version: Margaret.

© 2001 Neil E. Webner.   All rights reserved.



Charity Webner and her family

Thanksgiving 1908

  Seated l. to r.: Leroy Blough Webner, Helen Fane Webner, Charity Elizabeth (Walton) Webner, Edith Fern Webner, Harold Ross Webner, Frances Ruth Webner.
  Middle row: Minnie Mattie (Blough) Webner, Lucinda Helen (Webner) Davidson, Mary Elizabeth (Wagoner) Webner.
  Back row: Bernie Waren Webner, Katherine Fane (Davies) Webner, David Ross Webner, Rush Reynolds Webner, Ira Day Webner, Samuel Davidson, Gilbert Ohio Webner, Frank Floyd Webner.

Charity (Blough) Webner and her family


Genealogy links related to our Family
If you have a Web page related to the Webner family (regardless of surname),
I would be pleased to trade links.
The World Wide Webner
A complete database of three Webner families whose relationships (other than name) have not yet been determined. This site also contains many downloadable pictures dating from the very early 1900's. Searchable surnames include Webner, Weygandt, Walton, Blough, Hiner and many others. Visitor registration is required simply to protect the security of the listed names, but the process is quick and easy.   Please let me know if you have any trouble accessing this site.
Rootsweb WorldConnect Webner Database
Worldconnect, a project of Rootsweb, is a non-profit effort to bring together the family trees of people from throughout the world. Searchable, check pedigrees, etc. Very powerful resource! Or you can go right here for WorldConnect's main index page.
Rootsweb WorldConnect Weygandt Database
Susan Wyant offers this database of 1,850 names in Weygandt/Wyant family tree.
FamilyTreeMaker's Webner Home Page
FamilyTreeMaker is the software that many Webner's use to track their family trees. At this site, we interact with other throughout the world interested in their family trees.
Grandpa Rush's train station
In 1939, Smithville photographer Dan Mishler took a picture of Wheeling and Lake Erie Stationmaster Rush Webner passing a message to an engineer in a speeding steam engine. The picture was quite an accomplishment at the time. Copies can be seen in many Webner homes (and on my computer wallpaper). This and another picture of Rush are shown at the Smithville Community Historical Society site maintained by a Mishler descendent.
Recollections of John Keses, 87th Pa. Regiment
This is a brief autobiography of John Keses and some of his experiences of the Civil War. John was married to Catherine Webner, one of David's sisters. (This file is in a MS Word format. Write to me if you would rather have it in a MS Works format.)
US GenWeb's Pennsylvania Home Page
US GenWeb, part of the WorldGenWeb project, offers researchers help, tools, information to aid their research. From this page, you can select any county in the state.
Family Tree Maker's Webner Home Page
FamilyTreeMaker is the software that most, if not all, of our family uses to track our genelogical information. That way, we can easily pass data among ourselves.
The Walton Family's Canadian Page
The Walton's USA Page
The Waltons are an active family with a two web sites and updates on their reunions.
The Carinthia, Austria Anthem
It is suspected that our family resided in the area of Klugenfurt, Austria, before coming to America. Klugenfurt is in the province of Carinthia. At this site, you can listen to Carinthia's very beautiful anthem (RealAudio required).
Bill Kelly's Family Tree
Bill resides in Europe but, through the magic of the Internet, we sometimes discuss the Webner family tree of which he is a member. You can see his tree covering 17 generations at this site.
Neil and Donna Webner's Home Page
This is our personal home page with updates on the most terrific grandchildren you could meet, and filled with information about us, our extraordinary family and our wonderful friends. And did I mention that it includes pictures of some of most terrific grandchildren in the universe?!!
[ Helen Davidson's note ]