I have pretty much been able to establish that Jacob Hummel bought his farm from John Wilcoxon in 1798, he married his wife, Elizabeth, Sept. 29, 1801, and started his family. He lived there until his death in 1866.
However, he still just appears, it seems, out of nowhere.
I have a new hunch, and it seems to fit nicely: Jacob Hummel may have come to America as a young man, by himself, probably in the mid- to late-1790s, and settled with members of his mother's family, the Zieglers, around Alleghenyville, PA, until he was able to get a place of his own, nearby.
Here are some of the reasons why I think this hunch fits:
- Coming to America was an expensive proposition, usually attempted by indentured servants (whose fares ware paid for them), well off families, or young single men.
- Robeson Lutheran (Plow) Cemetery lists his parent's names as Michael and Mary (Ziegler) Hummel. Neither of the Michael Hummels I found match what I know of Jacob.
- According to a map I have, Jacob purchased his farm in 1798, when he was a young man of 20, seemingly out of nowhere.
- He married a local Robeson Township girl, (Maria) Elizabeth Hertz, the daughter of David Hertz, who had a farm just over in what is now Brecknock Township, Berks County, PA. These last two facts point to Jacob Hummel knowing both the area and the people at a young age.
- According to his childrens' birth records, Jacob attended Allegheny Church, 5 miles away from his farm, until sometime around 1815 or so, when he changed to Robeson Church, less than 1/2 mile from his home. Possibly, Allegheny Church was the Ziegler (and maybe his) family church those first years. Many Zieglers are buried in the old cemetery there.
Just a hunch, I haven't researched this yet, however, to me it sounds plausible, and no one else has ever been able to come up with anything else that fits.