Krepps Family History

(Krepps, Krebs, Kreps, Keck, Hayes, Hays, McComas, Long)

By Bob Krepps

Note: This is basically all the information I have; it is mainly based on federal census records, land records, probate and marriage records from 1720 through 1920.  Any bit information that may give me clues to find more on the Krebs/Kreps/Krepps family will be greatly appreciated. I am continuing to research the Krepps family and will regularly update this history as new information is discovered.  If you have any clues, no matter how small, please let me know.  Thanks! Bob Krepps

Johann Michael Krebs (1677 – 1745) – Johann Michael Krebs was born in 1677.[1]  He was married to Margaretha Barbara[2].  We do not know the exact year He immigrated to Pennsylvania with his family; he came before definite records of ship passenger lists were kept.  They came from northwestern Switzerland (an area which was intermittently German or Swiss territory and German speaking) or from Germany.  Michael Krebs settled in Philadelphia County (now Montgomery County, Pennsylvania) and bought land in 1722.  He was comparatively wealthy, owning 350 acres.  His name appears as taxable in Hanover Township, Philadelphia County, in 1734.  There is a Krebs Family Tavern in 1723 in New Hanover.   In March of 1725 he signed a petition to build a road from “Farmers mill near Schwenksville to George Wanner’s mill on Swamp Creek”.  In 1743, at the April term of the Supreme Court, Michael and his two sons, Heinrich and Simon were naturalized and took the oath of allegiance.  He was a member of the New Hanover Lutheran Church.[3]  Johann Michael Krebs died in Feb. 1745.[4]  Margaretha Barbara died in September of 1751.[5]

Johann Heinrich Krebs (1711 – 1771) – Johann Heinrich Krebs, the son of Johann Michael & Margaretha Barbara Krebs, was born on July 18, 1711 in Germany.  He immigrated with his family to the Pennsylvania Colony.  He lived in New Hanover Township, Pennsylvania, where he was taxed on 100 acres of land in 1734.  In 1742 he was overseer of the poor in New Hanover Township and in 1767 he was overseer of highways.   He was a member of and trustee of the New Hanover Lutheran Church and signed the new constitution of the church in 1765.[6]  Heinrich was naturalized in April 1743, along with his father and brother, Simon.  The 1769 tax list shows that he was taxed on 350 acres of land, four horses and six cows.  He married Maria Barbara Grim (or Krim) on Oct. 21, 1730.[7]  Heinrich Krebs died on January 17, 1771.  Maria Barbara Krebs was found dead in front of her house seven years later, in 1777.

John Henry Krebs (1742 – 1798) – John Henry Krebs, the son of Johann Heinrich and Maria Barbara (Grim) Krebs, was born in 1742, at New Hanover, Pennsylvania.  He lived in New Hanover, and then lived in Berks County from 1760 - 1772.  He arrived and settled in Mahanoy Township in Northumberland County, Pennsylvania in 1773.  He purchased 100 acres of land there, surveyed on April 5, 1774.[8]  On April 11, 1774 the proprietors of St. Peter’s Lutheran Church granted a warrant for twenty-five acres of land in August (later Mahanoy Township) to Gottlieb Leffler and Henry Krebs in trust for a Lutheran and Calvinist Church and schoolhouse thereon to be erected and built.[9]  There was a Krebs Church in Red Cross, Upper Mahanoy Township, in Northumberland County.[10]  In 1779 Henry was a constable in Mahanoy Township.  During the Revolutionary War he was a committee man for Mahanoy Township.[11]  John Henry Krebs died in March of 1798.[12] 

Christopher Long (1746 – 1829) – Christopher Long was born on May 5, 1746 in Culpepper County, Virginia.  He was the son of Ware and Sarah (Robinson) Long.  He married Sarah Turner, daughter of James and Elsie Turner in 1773.  During the Revolutionary War Christopher served the entire war in the Virginia Militia in a unit known as the “Culpepper Minute Men”.  Christopher was with George Washington during his campaign through the Jerseys and around Philadelphia.  He was in the battles of Trenton, Princeton, Brandywine and Germantown.  He spent the winter of 1777 – 1778 at Valley Forge.  He carried the colors at the siege of Yorktown.  Later in life he often related (as recorded by his son Joel) that, “he stood thirty steps from General Washington and saw Cornwallis’ sword surrendered.”  Christopher and Sarah had eight children.  He moved his family to family to Henry County, Virginia, where he bought a farm.  Later he moved west to Patrick County, Virginia.  After his son Joel was born he moved to Galia County, Ohio (later divided and renamed Jackson County).  Fourteen years after moving to Ohio, Christopher and Sarah moved to Henry County, Indiana, to the place their sons Joel and Elsiha had located.  Sarah died on September 11, 1822 at the residence of her son Joel.  Christopher died on August 14, 1829 at the residence of his son, Joel.[13]

Benjamin Long (1790 – 1854) – Benjamin Long was born in Henry County, Virginia on February 15, 1790, he was the son of Christopher and Sarah (Turner) Long.   He served as a private in Captain Butler’s Company of the Ohio State Militia during the War of 1812 from August 9, 1812 to February 9, 1813.[14]  He fought under General Tupper against the British and Indians at the Battle of Maumee, in the northwestern part of Ohio.  He married Rebecca Jenkins, daughter of Azariah and Febe (Cavendish) Jenkins, on February 10 1814 in Jackson County, Ohio.  Benjamin and Rebecca had eleven children.  Benjamin was a farmer.  He moved to Henry County, Indiana and later to Jasper County, Illinois.  Benjamin Long died on July 15, 1854 in Crooked Creek Township, Jasper County, Illinois.[15]

(John) Henry Krebs (1777 – 1841) – John Henry Krebs was born on December 6, 1777[16] in Northumberland County, PA, the son of John Henry and Christina Margaret Krebs.  He was a farmer.  Henry came to Butler County, PA in 1813 when his sister’s (Christina) husband, George Otto, became ill and eventually died. Butler County’s Orphan’s Court records show that John Henry was appointed as the guardian of several of George Otto’s minor children.[17]  According to property records, John Henry Krebs bought and sold three fairly large plots of land in Butler County.  Census records record his name as Henry Krebs, other records as John Henry Krebs.  He was married to Maria Barbara Koble (b. 29 Sept 1780), the daughter of Daniel and Barbara Koble, and had the following children[18]:

            Samuel (b. 25 Sep 1803, d. 21 Oct 1884), he married Eliza Hill or Hilt

            Catherine (b. 1806), she married John Grim

            Henry (b. about 1808), he married Caroline?

            Daniel (b. about 1811, d. Jan 1875), he had a son named John Henry but have not been able to determine his wife’s name or the names of other children.

            George (b. 1813 or 1821 depending on the record accepted, d. 25 May 1896), he married Anna Barbara Keck

            Elizabeth (b. 1817), she married Jacob Dumbaugh

            Joseph (b. about 1819, d. 4 Dec 1888), he married Matlida French

            Lydia (b. 5 Jan 1825), she married Thomas Roe

            Anne (b. 1824), she married George Speyorer (or Steyere)

Barbara Krebs died on February 1, 1836 and Henry Krebs on March 4, 1841 in Butler County, PA.

Napoleon B. McComas (1814 -1881) – Napoleon B. McComas was born in Virginia in 1814.  He was the son of William and Dicey (Napier) McComas.  He married Margaret Long, daughter of Benjamin and Rebecca (Jenkins) Long, on April 14, 1836 in Hancock County, Indiana.[19]  He purchased land in Jasper County, Illinois, near the town of Hidalgo, in 1839.[20]  Census records indicate he was a farmer.[21]  Napoleon and Margaret had eleven children.  Their oldest son William J. McComas died while serving in Company E, 97th Infantry, Illinois, on March 23, 1863 in Memphis, TN.[22] Their daughter, Eliza, married James Preston Hayes.  Napoleon and Margaret later moved to Charleston, Coles County, Illinois.[23]  Napoleon McComas died in 1881.

George Krebs/Kreps/Krepps[24] - George Krebs (or Krepps), son of Henry and Barbara Krebs, was born about 1813 or 1821 in Pennsylvania[25].  He lived in Cranberry Township, Butler County, Pennsylvania. Occupation on census records: Farmer.   He married Anna Keck (born in January 1855).  The 1880 federal census record indicates that George was blind.   George died on March 25, 1896 in Cranberry Township.  George had the following children:

        Martha Krepps - was born in 1874, she married William Landis.

        George Krepps – was born on August 7, 1876 in Butler County, PA and died on January 28, 1952 in Beaver County, PA.  He married Mary Adella Hayes (“Della”) who was born on Nov. 5, 1872 and died in December 1957.

        Daniel Krepps – was born in June 1878 (I am still attempting to find out what happened to Daniel, including date of death and any marriage or children.  If you have any information please contact me.)

        Amelia Krepps - was born in July 1881, she married Theodore Barto (1881 - 1924)

        Albert Krepps - was born in June 1889  (I am still attempting to find out what happened to Albert, including date of death and any marriage or children.  If you have any information please contact me.)

        Charles Krepps - his date of birth unknown, he died before 1900

Note:  At some point the name Krebs/Kreps was changed to Krepps.  George Krebs' son George spelled the name Krepps.  Anna Krebs, a widow at the time of the 1900 census, still spelled the name Krebs. (See footnote)

John Henry Keck – John Keck was born in Bavaria, Germany on January 5, 1822.  John Keck and his wife, Anna Martha, immigrated to America in 1848.  He was a farmer in Cranberry Township, Butler County, Pennsylvania.  John’s daughter, Anna Barbara, married George Krebs (Kreps).  John Henry Keck died on March 19, 1910 in Cranberry Township, Butler County, PA.

Anna Barbara Keck – Anna B. Keck, the daughter of John and Anna Martha (Young) Keck, was born on October 1, 1854.  He married her next-door neighbor George Krepps.  George and Anna had six children.  (See George Krepps) After having been widowed a number of years, in 1904 she married Louis Kloepfer (born in 1857 in Germany) after responding to an advertisement for a mail order bride.[26]  Louis, who emigrated from Germany with his family in 1864[27], moved from Missouri to Pennsylvania to marry Anna.  Anna died on November 11, 1933.

James Preston Hayes (1851 – before 1885) – Was born in 1851 in Kentucky.  He was working as a broom maker in a broom factory in Charleston.[28]  James married Eliza A. McComas, the daughter of Napoleon and Margaret (Long) McComas.  His daughter, Della, married George Krepps (Jr.).  James Preston Hayes died prior to 1886.   His widow, Eliza, married Edward Sharp in 1886.[29]

George Krepps (Jr.) – George Krepps, the son of George Krebs/Kreps, was born August 7, 1876 in Butler County, PA and died on January 28, 1952 in Beaver County, PA.  George was a tool dresser working in the oil fields during the boom days of the oil industry in Pennsylvania.  He married Mary Adelia “Della” Hayes who was born on Nov. 5, 1872 and died on December 23, 1957.  They had the following children:

        Anna Amelia Krepps –was born April 12, 1896 and died July 1985.  She married James Dwyer and lived in Terre Haute, Indiana.  James Dwyer was a firefighter.

        Vivian Albert Krepps – was born February 16, 1898.  He married Edith Roser on August 27, 1923.  He died June 15, 1982.

        Charles Daniel Krepps – was born February 17, 1900 and died on July 8,1932.  He married Viola Newbig (b. Nov. 22, 1900, d. Sept. 1986).

        Clyde P. Krepps – was born October 8, 1901 and died on August 4, 1972.[30]  He married Vera Mae Whipple (b. July 10, 1907, d. June 10, 1958) daughter of Christian John and Florence (Bird) Whipple.

        Gertrude Frances Krepps - was born Dec. 16, 1903 in Pennsylvania and died on March 25, 1963 in Tucson Arizona.  She married and divorced Adolphus Markle, they had two children.  

Vivian Albert Krepps (1898 – 1982) – Vivian Albert Krepps, the son of George and Della (Hayes) Krepps was born on February 16, 1898 in Cranberry Township, Butler County, Pennsylvania.  He served in the United State Marine Corps during World War I.  He enlisted on April 20, 1917.  He went to the Dominican Republic as a part of the Dominican Expeditionary force, 15th Regiment, 2nd Brigade commanded by Colonel J.C. Breckinridge (later General Breckinridge).  Vivian was appointed a Corporal on August 20, 1818, appointed Sergeant on January 9, 1920 and awarded a good conduct medal on June 5, 1920.[31]  He was discharged on December 12, 1920.  After his military service Viv worked with his father, George, as a tool dresser in the oil industry.  They traveled through out Pennsylvania, Indiana, Illinois and Kentucky on oil drilling jobs.  Vivian met his future wife, Edith Roser, on a blind date with Edith’s sister, Lula, and Lula’s future husband, Floyd Lehman, while working in Indiana.  Edith Roser, the daughter of Elby and Lena (Albertson) Roser, a seventeen year old, who just finished her sophomore year of high school, fell in love and eloped with Vivian.  Vivian and Edith were married on August 27, 1923 in New Cumberland, West Virginia.[32]  Vivian A. Krepps died on June 15, 1982.

If you have any information on any of the people listed above or their ancestors that could be of help in writing a history or in finding sources for more information please contact me. Thanks!!

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Written by Bob Krepps  © 2001& 2003 all rights reserved.  Permission granted to copy for personal & non-commercial purposes only.

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[1] New Hanover Church Records record the burial of Michael Krebs on Feb. 21, 1745 at age 67; therefore he was probably born in 1677.

[2] Source of his wife’s name is the will of Johann Michael Krebs, dated Feb. 10, 1744 and written in high German states: To my beloved wife Margaretha Barbara, (if she remains a widow), to live in present dwelling of house during her life, etc…  100 pounds, with interest 6 pounds, to be paid to her yearly during her life.  My daughter Anna Barbara is not to make any claim on the estate having received her share during my lifetime. To my disobedient son, Simon, the sum of 10 pounds.  To my son, Johann Heinrich, all my land and plantation, he to provide for my wife as specified and to pay the children of Simon the sum of 200 pounds in 20 equal yearly payments, to be equally divided between the children as they come of age, the said 200 pounds for the use of all the children and to remain in the care of said Johann Heinrich.  Also these children obligate themselves when they come of age and receive their share of the 200 pounds to maintain their father, Simon, during his life if he should want it in his age.  (Philadelphia County Will Book, Vol. G, page 108)

[3] Much of the information on Michael Krebs and his family come from New Hanover Lutheran Church records.

[4] New Hanover Church Records record the burial of Michael Krebs on Feb. 21, 1745 at age 67.

[5] New Hanover Lutheran Church records record her burial on September 24, 1751 at age 75 years.

[6] Another interesting entry in the church records is that Heinrich Kreb’s son George suffered from epileptic fits.  Much of what we know about Heinrich Krebs and his family come from church records.

[7] Marriage records of Rev. John Caspar Stoever; who preformed marriage ceremony.

[8] In 1794 a Philip Krebs, a Peter Krebs and a Michael Kreps purchased 400 acres each in Northumberland County.

[9] Northumberland Land Warrant L-71, BLR.

[10] History of Northumberland County, Herbert C. Bell.  The Church register was lost.

[11] He is reported to also have served in the military during the war, I am attempting to confirm and document this.

[12] There was a Catharina Krebs convicted and hanged for infanticide that may have been John Henry Krebs’ daughter. (We do not know who she was.)  One daughter died leaving two illegitimate children.

[13] Genealogy of the Descendants of Ware Long of Culpeper County, Virginia, 1907 by John Turner Long is the source for a major portion of the information on Christopher Long, Joel Long (son of Christopher) was cited as the source of much of the material in this record.

[14] Military Records, Benjamin Long, National Archives

[15] Genealogy of the Descendants of Ware Long of Culpeper County, Virginia, 1907 by John Turner Long is the source for a major portion of the information on Benjamin Long.

[16] Cemetery Records for St. John’s Evangelical Lutheran Church Cemetery (birth and death date source for both Henry and Barbara Krebs)

[17] Butler County, Pennsylvania, Orphan’s Court Records 1815

[18] These were the children listed in Henry’s will

[19] Early Indiana Marriage Records

[20] Illinois Public Land Purchase, Jasper County, IL on August 22, 1839

[21] 1860 Federal Census, Jasper County, IL

[22] Military Records, William J. McComas, National Archives

[23] 1880 Federal Census, Charleston, Coles County, IL

[24] In census and land records that have been found George’s surname is spelled all three ways.  Vivian A. Krepps told his daughter that the name had been changed from Krebs to Krepps at some point.  Early census records consistently spell the name Kreps.  An 1874 Butler County, Pennsylvania, land map spells George Sr.’s name Krepps.  Other maps and records refer to Krebs bank on Brush Creek on property owned by George.  George’s widow, Anna’s name is spelled Krebs in the 1900 census and she signed probate documents with the Krebs spelling.  The original birth record at the Butler County Court House for Vivian Krepps (George, Jr.’s son) spells the name Krebbs.  In 1945 Vivian had the record corrected to read Krepps and was issued a delayed certificate of birth with the Krepps spelling.  The Social Security Death Index spells Vivian A.’s (George, Jr.’s son) name Kreps. Vivian’s name is spelled Krepps in all of his military records.  Most of John Henry Krebs’ (father of George) descendants who remained in Butler and Beaver Counties used the Krepps spelling; however some descendants also spell the name Kreps, Creps or Krebs.

[25] There were several Kreps’ families also living in Cranberry Township according to the 1820 thru 1860 census records.  All of the Kreps families except George disappear from Cranberry Township census records after the Civil War.  If census records are correct George was born in about 1821, however Courthouse death records indicate that he was 83 years old at the time of his death, which, if accurate, would indicate he was born about 1813.

[26] Source – Glen Landis, Anna’s great-grandson

[27] 1920 Federal Census, New Sewickley Township, Beaver County, PA

[28] 1880 Federal Census, Charleston, Coles County, IL

[29] 1900 Federal Census, Charleston, Coles County, IL

[30] Obituary Clyde P. Krepps, Beaver County Times, August 1972

[31] Military Service Records, Vivian A. Krepps, USMC

[32] Marriage Certificate, Vivian A. Krepps and Edith Roser