Peter Maust and Ann Unruh

Peter Maust was born in 1803, the son of George and Magdalena Maust of Tinicum, Bucks County. Peter grew up in a family of nine children, surrounded by other German farming families, attending the local Lutheran church. Most of his siblings, and most of the cousins in his extended family, stayed in upper Bucks County, but Peter was different. Some time around 1830, he left Tinicum and moved down toward Philadelphia. On the 27th of October 1833 he married Anna Unruh, from a family of prosperous farmers, who owned land around Germantown. Anna’s grandfather Sebastian had immigrated with his parents and his brother Nicholas in 1752; the two brothers Sebastian and Nicholas owned large tracts of land in Germantown. Peter and Anna were married at the old Whitpain (Boehm’s) Reformed Church in Montgomery County.1 She was the daughter of Philip and Barbara Unruh of Springfield, just east of Germantown. Philip and Barbara were married about 1794, lived on a farm in Springfield, and had seven children.

Peter and Anna settled in Germantown and started their family. It must have been a change for Peter to move from the German-dominated townships where he grew up, to Germantown, which had become diverse by 1840. 2 Peter and Anna were living near people with non-English names like Peacock and Gowan, and some of their children married into non-German families like the McVaughs.3 In 1850 Peter and Anna were living close to Anna’s cousin George Unruh.4 Peter died in January 1853, when letters of administration were granted to Anna. The inventory of Peter’s estate was taken by Ann Maust and Abraham Unruh.5 It showed a comfortable life, with much bedding, looking glasses, mahogany tables, a sewing stand, an eight-day clock, and a silver watch, as well as six milch cows, a horse and colt, two heifers, and six shoat. Peter and Anna could travel into town in their Dearborn wagon, a covered wagon sometimes called the “station wagon of its day”. The total of the estate was over $10,000.6 Much of the value was from the sale of the farm to Charles Heibner. A few years later, as an officer of the Chestnut Hill Water Works, Heibner and his partners built a tower with machinery for pumping water out of a well, storing it, and supplying it to local residents.7 This was probably not on Peter’s land, but a few blocks west, toward Germantown Avenue.

After Peter’s death, Anna went to live with her daughter Maria, still in Springfield Township. She was still there in 1870.8 Most of her other children lived close by, some in Springfield; the farthest away was the daughter Anna Tyson ten miles north in Horsham. The older Anna lived on until 1877.9 She is buried with Peter at Ivy Hill Cemetery.10

Children of Peter and Anna:11

Anna, born 23 Sep 1834, died 1915, married Ephraim Tyson, son of Rynear and Eleanor. They lived on a farm in Horsham, Montgomery County.12 Ephraim was a shoemaker and farmer. He died in 1897. After his death Anna lived with her unmarried son John until she died in 1915. She and Ephraim were buried at Hatboro. Children: Ida, Edmund, Samuel, Robert, William J, John, Thomas, Albert, Anna, Hannah, Charles.13

Barbara, born about 1837.14 She married Henry Fisher in 1857 in Germantown as his third wife. They lived in Chestnut Hill, Philadelphia County, where Henry was a carpenter, and had six children together before Henry’s death in 1877. He was buried at St. Peter’s Lutheran Church in Montgomery County with his first wife. Barbara died in 1923 and was buried at Ivy Hill Cemetery in Philadelphia County.15 Children: Henry, Elizabeth, Charles, Samuel, Ella, Laura.16

Joseph, born 1838, died 1840 of scarlet fever, buried at St. Michael’s, Germantown.

George Unruh, born 1840, died 1912, married Amanda McVaugh; later moved to Whitemarsh, Montgomery County, where he was a farmer. She died in 1903. They are buried at Ivy Hill. Children: George, Samuel, William, John, Anna, Joseph, Daniel, Lillie.17

Samuel, born about 1843. In 1880 he was unmarried, living with his sister Maria and her husband. In 1890 he married a widow named Clara, twenty years younger than Samuel. They lived in Germantown, where he owned or managed a meat market.18 Clara’s divorced daughter Laura and her two children were living with them.19 Samuel and Clara have not been found in the 1920 census.20

Peter, born 1844, died 1917, married Ann Pierson Kulp. They lived in Springfield, Montgomery County, where Peter was a farmer. In 1880 they were had three children living with them.21 Peter died in 1917, and was buried at Ivy Hill with Ann and their children. She died in 1894. Children: George, Sarah, Henry, Levi, Clinton.22

John, born 1845, died 1894.23 He returned from the Civil War and in 1873 married Hermina Wolff at the Salem-Zion United Church of Christ in Philadelphia.24 They lived in Montgomery County, where he was a farmer. He died in 1894; she died in 1923. They were buried at St Thomas Church, Whitemarsh. Children: John, Mary, Peter, Louisa.

Maria, born 1847, died 1937, married William Engard in 1869, lived in Springfield, Montgomery County. In 1880 they were still there with four children.25 He died in 1927; she died ten years later. They were buried at Ivy Hill. Children: Anna, Samuel, Frederick, Susan Wilhelmina, Ida, Grover C.26


  1. Marriages at the church, Perkiomen Region vol. II, p. 195, on Internet Archive.
  2. He was the city Maust, as it were. His neighbors were Hinkle, Freas, Barnett, Wampole, France, Guyer, Waterhouse, and, several houses down, Charles Unruh.  Peter and Anna were shown with two sons and two daughters.
  3. 1840 census, Germantown, image 6. Of course some of these non-German-sounding names could have been anglicized versions of German names. The point is that Germantown in 1840 had become more diverse.
  4. 1850 census, Germantown, image 190.
  5. Philadelphia County estates, 1853, #36, City Hall, Philadelphia.
  6. A large part of the total was the balance of $8000 on agreement to buy the place. Apparently Peter was selling the farm to Charles Heibner.
  7. History of the waterworks, at, accessed June 2020.
  8. 1860 census, Springfield Township, image 20. Other family members are on image 16, 17, 21. 1870 census, Springfield Township, image 26.
  9. Philadelphia Inquirer, 29 Aug 1877, carried a short death notice. (Findagrave entry for Anna Unruh Maust)
  10. Findagrave, which has photos of their tombstones.
  11.   Census records, church records, burial records.
  12. Census records 1850-1880.
  13. Census records, Montgomery County deeds and probate records.
  14. Her birth certificate gives her birthdate as 1832; her tombstone gives it as 1833; some census records place it later. The 1850 census gives it as about 1837. That is used here, since it is closest to her actual birth.
  15. Findagrave entry for Henry Katz Fisher, citing the Biographical and Portrait Cyclopedia of Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, 1895.
  16. Census records.
  17. 1880 census.
  18. 1910 census, Philadelphia, ward 43, district 1097, image 17. Clara’s daughter Laura was living with them. She was divorced.
  19. The husbands of Clara and Laura have not been identified.
  20. No death or burial record has yet been found for them.
  21. 1880 census, Springfield Township, image 22 on Ancestry.
  22. Census records and Findagrave records for Ivy Hill Cemetery.
  23. Death certificates of their children Louisa, John and Peter; marriage record of the church (in German).
  24. Pennsylvania, Veterans Burial Cards, on Ancestry; PA and NJ Church and Town Records 1669-2013 on Ancestry.
  25. 1880 census, Springfield Township, image 27. (listed on as Springgrove Twp.)
  26. 1900 census.

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