Philip Maus

Philip Maus
Born: 1731, Zweibrunken, Prussia (now Germany)
Died: April 27, 1815, Montour Co., Pennsylvania
Parents: Frederick Maus, Sr. and Susannah Weaver
Occupation: hosier
Marriage: before 1759, Pennsylvania
Wife: Frances Heap
Born: Sept. 30, 1740, England
Died: after 1783, Pennsylvania
Parents: George Heap & Mary Classon

Children:

George Maus

Born: 1759, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Died: unknown
Elizabeth Maus
Born: 1761, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Died: unknown

Phillip Frederick Maus
Born: Jan 9, 1763, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Died: unknown

Susannah Maus

Samuel Maus

Born: 1767, Pennsylvania
Died: unknown

Lewis Frederick Maus
Born: 1773, Pennsylvania
Died: unknown
Military Service: Continental Army, American Revolutionary War

Charles Maus
Born: Jan. 29, 1776, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Military Service: quartermaster, Pennsylvania militia, Revolutionary War
Marriage: about 1817, Northumberland Co., Pennsylvania
Wife: Mary Maus (maiden name unknown)
Born: unknown
Died: unknown

Joseph Maus
Born: Oct., 1777, Pennsylvania
Died: July 26, 1867, unknown
Marriage: 1808, unknown
Wife: Sallie Montgomery
Born: unknown
Died: unknown

Jacob Weaver Maus
Born: March 24, 1782, Lenape, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Died: unknown

 

PHILIP MAUS

Philip Maus married Frances Heap, a native of England, "a most estimable wife, mother and friend." Valley Township, Montour Co., was the scene of new arrivals, in the persons of Philip Maus and family, who came in 1782. Philip Maus was born in Prussia, 1731. In the company of his parents he came to Philadelphia in 1741, being 10 years of age. He attended school, and soon could speak and write both English and German fluently. In 1750 he was apprenticed to the trade of manufacturing stockings, circumstances that enabled him in the times of the Revolution greatly to aid and benefit the country. Within five years after he commenced to learn his trade he established himself in the business, conducting it with great success for the next 20 years, when the troubles with the Mother country suspended operations. His brothers were Frederick, Charles and Mathew. The latter became a prominent surgeon in the war and was with General Montgomery in his expedition into Canada, and when Montgomery fell before Quebec he aided Colonel Burr in carrying away his body. Dr. Maus served through the entire war of Independence. When Philip's business furnished him the capital he invested it in the purchase of 600 acres of land. The patents from Thomas and John Penn are dated April 3, 1769, and are among the earliest in what is now Montour County. The proprietaries reserved a perpetual quitrent of two pence per acre, which was paid until the Commonwealth compensated the Penns and became the proprietor of the lands. The tract of land lay in the rich and fertile valleys of Valley Township. At the time of the purchase it lay on the outer fringe of the settlements, and hence no improvements were made on the property until after the Revolution. But as soon as peace and safety permitted Mr. Maus brought his family to this place, and for more then 30 years it was his home. During the Revolution Mr. Maus was an active and earnest patriot. He formed the intimate acquaintance, which extended to the end of their days, of Benjamin Franklin and Robert Morris. Mr. Maus invested very largely of his ample fortune in furnishing clothing to the army, took his pay in Continental money, and of this money, when it became valueless, he had several thousand dollars on hand. Basketfuls of this old currency may yet be found in the possession of Philip F. Maus. Leather breeches, moccasins and hunting shirts, were the clothing of some of the grandfathers of many of our most aristocratic and exclusive people of fashion and wealth of the present day. At the close of the war Mr. Maus' fortune was so reduced that he turned his attention to his land in Montour County.

It is thought that the first settler into the vicinity of what is now known as Valley township was Philip Maus, the founder of the family whose members for many generations have been such factors throughout this portion of the State. He purchased a plot of land, location on Mahoning creek, in May, 1769, which was the earliest date that is was possible to obtain a clear title to land that had been purchased from the Indians, and which included a great area in this section. At the close of the war of the Revolution, Philip Maus, together with his son and two carpenters, made plans to visit his purchase. The little party first appeared in the settlement at the mouth of the Mahoning, which had just been founded by Daniel and William Montgomery, and from there Mr. Maus proceeded to the side of his new home. With the aid of his son and the carpenters the pioneer built the first log cabin in Valley Township. It was located on the right bank of the stream. He proposed to clear away a small tract of woods near his humble home. but prowling Indians prevented an immediate consummation of that plan and the tools which he and provided for that purpose were, together with other personal possessions, finally buried, in order to preserve them from the savage foe. Philip Maus has left recollections, which he entrusted to his friend John Frazer to write. From those memoirs is gathered what is probably the most reliable account of the killing of Robert Curry, as follows: "Two years previously," in May, 1780 Robert Curry and his wife traveling on horse-back from Northumberland, on the way to their little farm on the a Mahoning, when about midway between the two places, were attacked by savages. He was killed and scalped and his skull broken to fragments with their tomahawks. She was taken prisoner. Her hair was long and jet black, which they greatly admired. She had concealed a pair of scissors about her person which fortunately for her, escaped their vigilant search when she was first made captive. She escaped and returned to her husband?s death scene. She gathered up the pieces of his skull in her apron took them to her house, which she reached the next day. The agony and deep distress of this poor woman may be conceived, but the pen utterly fails to describe them. ?

A fragment of a letter from Mrs. Maus, dated "Northumberland, 1783" is so full of interest that a portion of it is reproduced:

" your brother George likes this place very well. When you come, do not fail to bring 100 White Chapel needles and two or three ounces of thread suitable for sewing calico and homespun linen. Give my love to your Grandpa and grandma, and tell her I wish her to come with you and see us; we will arrange for her journey to Lebanon and back. You will see Rev. Stoy's palace. Tell her the Pennington?s house up Race street is nothing to compare to it and Dr. Stoy lives only seventy-five miles from us. Tell the girls that Susy and the young girls here take a canoe and go into the river fishing here by themselves; the river is as clear as a spring and not half a yard deep. This is a most beautiful and picturesque place. We have the wild deer not half a mile from us, skipping about the hills where the boys go to fetch the cows.

Your loving mother, Frances Maus"

In 1793 Philip Maus built his sawmill, and for years cut the lumber for every building that was erected in the neighborhood. The limestone that was found in abundant quantities in the neighbored formed another natural resource to construct the homes of the settlers, and as Danville grew into a flourishing industrial community proved a great source of supply for her iron furnaces. Seven years later this sturdy pioneer built a flouring mill, which for its day was an imposing structure. An anecdote covering his experiences in digging the mill-race has descended to the present time. One portion of the work was being done by the Catholics, and the other by the Protestants, and such was the factional feeling that the proprietor had to take possession of the clubs and shillelaghs of the contending elements in order to prevent bloodshed. Tradition has it that eleven barrels of whiskey were consumed during the progress of the work, which apparently was a community affair, and the whiskey was contributed because the new mill was to be a public convenience. Early in the days of their settlement the Maus family cultivated two acres of flax, and took the product to a Scotch family in the hamlet, who did much of the neighborhood weaving. From the flax was woven the linen cloth which made their summer clothing. Their heavier winter garmenture was obtained from the wool clipped from the backs of the sheep that they raised. Before the era of wool and flax, cured and dressed animal skins provided their clothing. During the long evenings of the winter the Maus family, by the light of lard oil lamps, perused the literature of the day, which, so far as their library was concerned, consisted of such works as "Cook's Voyage," Weem's "Life of Washington," the works of Oliver Goldsmith--the "Deserted Village," "Vicar of Wakefield," and even "Don Quixote," It is stated that on rare and festive occasions, Maus senior would add to the enjoyment of the reading by apportioning the dramatis personae amongst them. When the Maus family fortunes had grown to the point that justified the acquisition of a family carriage, one of the style of Louis XIV was purchased, and its arrival in the valley created a profound sensation among the neighbors. This vehicle is thought to have been the first one of its kind imported into the vicinity of what is now Montour County. One of the first neighbors of the Maus family was Samuel Music, who soon became known to the community as a Godly man and an excellent citizen. He was subject, however, to periods of moroseness, and when in thatmood was exceedingly gruff and brusque to all. His neighbors understood him, even in the grimmest of tempers, and his roughness of speech was a source of amusement to them. The gristmill at Mausdale had not been running for several years. The building erected by Philip Maus is still in use and is a substantialstone structure, which bids fair to outlast the present generation. This is taken from the book "Historical and Biographical Annuals of Columbia and Montour Counties, Pennsylvania Vol. I and II. BYU
Library F157.C7 H6. Philip Maus Federal Supply Tax Mahoning Township, 1783-1784. Naturalizations in America and the West

Indies...Sacrament taken Sept. 27, 1765.
Fathers Will Proven 6 Jun 1786, Philadelphia Co., Pennsylvania Wills, 1682-1819.
5 of the 7 sons of Philip are listed in the 1820 Columbia Co., Pennsylvania census along with Justus Strawbridge.

Special thanks to Cristi Starr for information on the Maus family.

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