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KELKER Families

Switzerland to Pennsylvania, Ohio, Indiana and Colorado

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From Switzerland, KÖLLIKER was changed to KELKER after arriving in 1743 in Pennsylvania. The David KELKER family helped lay the gravel beds for the railroads and later ran a boarding house following the railroad from Pennsylvania through Ohio as the rails were laid. Son Anthony became an engineer after they arrived in Fort Wayne, Allen County, Indiana. Several others in the family also worked for the railroad and several were engineers. Several Kelker brothers and their descendants live in Fort Wayne, and a couple engineer brothers moved to Colorado. There is a Kelker Junction near Denver, Colorado that is most likely named for the Kelker brothers who moved there. See internet links below.


View West Side Cemetery Delphos, Van Wert County, Ohio in a larger map
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My great-great-grandparents were Amanda KELKER 1839 Franklin County, Pennsylvania to 1914 Delphos, Van Wert County, Ohio to Marion, Grant County, Indiana and Lewis TIMMONS 1838 Logan County to 1899 Delphos, Van Wert County, Ohio. Amanda lived in Fort Wayne, Allen County, Indiana for about 15 years, before moving in with a daughter in Marion, Indiana before passing away. Her obituary says she was buried in Delphos, Ohio and a newspaper line says Lewis TIMMONS was buried in West Side Cemetery Delphos, Allen County, Ohio. Only Edmund TIMMONS, Lewis' father has a tombstone. Several grandchildren and other relatives are buried here. Their Evans grandchildren were the first burials in 1847 in this cemetery.

Amanda's brothers Anthony and Samuel KELKER in Fort Wayne and John KELKER in Colorado were railroad engineers during the wood and coal burning steam locomotive days similar to the Nickel Plate 765 engine from Fort Wayne, Allen County, Indiana in the You Tube video above. Brother George KELKER was also a railroad worker in Colorado, but I'm not sure he was an engineer. Several descendants of these families also worked on the railroad for the next couple of generations.

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View Lindenwood Cemetery, Allen County, Indiana in a larger map
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3rd great-grandparents were David KELKER 1801 Lebanon County, Pennsylvania to Goshen, Mahoning County to Delphos, Allen County, Ohio to 1872 Fort Wayne, Allen County, Indiana and Mary HOUSER 1802 Schaefferstown, Lebanon County, Pennsylvania to Mahoning County to Delphos, Allen County, Ohio to 1883 Fort Wayne, Allen County, Indiana. Son Anthony KELKER is discussed on my Public Officials web page. All 3 are buried in Lindenwood Cemetery Fort Wayne, Indiana in Anthony's family plot.

4th cousin Patrick Kelker's retirement from the U.S. Post Office was the front page newspaper story on Christmas day December 25, 2010 and includes a short video.

4th great-grandparents were John KELKER after 1768 to after 1808 to Lebanon County, Pennsylvania and Barbara ZIMMERMAN about 1773-1855 was 92 years old when she died in Lebanon County, Pennsylvania according to the 'Kelker book' and confirmation has not been found.


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5th great-grandparents Rudolph KELKER 1747-1826 Lebanon County, Pennsylvania and Maria WEIDMAN about 1750 Lebanon County, Pennsylvania and are most likely buried in the Tudor United Church of Christ formerly German Reformed cemetery. He was on the indenture of the church March 8, 1780 as shown on page 19 in the Google book A history of Tabor First Reformed church, Lebanon, Penna, by D. Earnest Klopp, Lebanon, June 1892, below.

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6th great-grandparents were Henry KELKER (Heinrich KÖELLIKER) 1705 Zurich, Switzerland to 1762 Lebanon, Lancaster now Lebanon County, Pennsylvania and Regula BRÄETSCHER Andelfingen, Switzerland to Lancaster now Lebanon County, Pennsylvania. Their voyage to America took 28 weeks, but the ship is unknown, although the landing location is speculated as in Carolina as shown on page 59 and Ancestor Search has them included on a page for the ship Snow Endeavor. The signer of their church records in Switzerland was a Ziegler, which raises the question was that Ziegler related to my Ziegler ancestors who came from Switzerland. Their immigration is discussed in Lists of Swiss emigrants in the eighteenth century to the American Colonies, Volume 1,  by Albert Bernhardt Faust, mentioned in the preface page iv, and page viii. I plan to make a trip to Pennsylvania to get better photos of their tombstone than what is on Find-A-Grave.

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The KELKER book and several internet sources take the KÖELLIKER family back eight more generations to 1465 in Zurich, Switzerland. My David KELKER and wife Mary HOUSER are found in the book on page 120 (126) [n225] below, stating they lived in Fort Wayne, Indiana May 4, 1869.

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View Harrisburg, Dauphin County, Pennsylvania in a larger map
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Harrisburg, Dauphin County, Pennsylvania links

Many of the following locations can be seen on my Lebanon County, Pennsylvania Google map

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Colorado links

Genealogy research is never complete, important details might be missing, and often contains errors, so let me know if your research contradicts mine. My Indiana and Ohio family research comes from conversations with relatives, scrapbooks, library research, online records, visits to courthouses, final resting places on family farms and cemeteries. Families in other states rely mostly on the research of others. Links to other web sites often change then won't work, so if you find broken links, have additional information on any families, corrections, photos, or anything to add to the history of our families, please leave a Comment in my Guest book, join my Follis Families on Facebook page for updates and new discoveries, or send an Email. The Wayback Machine archives most old web pages so copy and paste the broken URL address to find the missing 404 pages that disappeared. Read Dick Eastman's newsletter on using Unverified Data from the internet. This web site is designed to work with JavaScript and the latest browsers. If you experience display problems you may need to update your browser.

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