Daniel Adams, Somerset County, PA gunsmith

Introduction: Daniel Adams is known as a Somerset County, Pennsylvania gunsmith from the 1837 tax roll of Somerset Township. He is thought to be the apprentice who, at about 19 years of age, ran away from Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania gunsmith William Blain in 1832. I assume he is the Daniel Adams who appears in Somerset Township censuses beginning in 1840 and lived near Samuels Church and Lavansville. The basis for this assumption is his age in the various Somerset Township censuses, compared to his age when he ran away from William Blain in nearby Westmoreland County.

1814: According to his tombstone, the Daniel Adams who lived near Samuels Church in Somerset Township, Somerset county, Pennsylvania was born on July 6, 1814.

1832: The following reward notice, which was provided by Daniel Adams' descendant Eric Ludy, is from the August 24, 1832 issue of "the Farmer's Repository", a Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania newspaper. It includes the statement, "Ran away from the subscriber, in Donegal Township, on the 15th of this month, an indented boy to the Gun Smith business named DANIEL ADAMS, about nineteen years of age..." The Daniel Adams who was born on July 6, 1814 would have been 18 years old in August of 1832. Westmoreland County is west of and adjoins the northern part of Somerset County.

Circa 1832: In 1832 and/or 1833, Westmoreland County gunsmith William Blaine published an advertisement offering "a $0.06 reward for the return of Daniel Adams a runaway apprentice, along with expensive shotguns $0.50, rifle guns $1.50, wolf traps $1.50, sword and scabbard $0.50." Reportedly, this advertisement appeared in the February 24, 1832 issue of the "Farmer's Repository", but it is also reported as appearing in 1833.

1837: According to Kauffman's 1960 book "The Pennsylvania - Kentucky Rifle", Daniel Adams is identified as a gunsmith in the 1837 tax roll of Somerset Township, Somerset County, Pennsylvania. Until Jefferson Township was formed in 1847, Somerset Township of Somerset County adjoined Westmoreland County.

1837: An obituary that is included farther below indicates that Daniel Adams had a daughter named Charlotte Rosan (Adams) Shaulis who died on June 12, 1896 at the age of 59 years, three months, and two days. This means she was born in 1837.

1838: The 1953 edition of Gluckman's "American Gun Makers" puts William Blaine in Ligonier Township of Westmoreland County in 1838.

The February 1984 "Laurel Messenger" indicates that Daniel and Catharine (Sibert) Adams had a child named Adelaide Adams who married Allen Will Snyder, but does not provide a birth date.

1839: Eli P. Adams is buried at the Christ Casebeer Lutheran Church Cemetery in Somerset County, which is 8.3 miles northeast of Lavansville on modern roads. His tombstone indicates he was born on January 25, 1839 and died on June 23, 1919. His memorial on findagrave.com (6662231) identifies him as a son of Daniel and Catherine (Seibert) Adams.

1840: The Daniel Adams family is enumerated in the 1840 census of Somerset Township. In the household are one male and one female in the up to five age group, and one male and one female in the 20 to 30 age group. Right or wrong, I assume (based on his age in subsequent censuses) that this is the same Daniel Adams who appeared on the tax roll of the Somerset Township as a gunsmith three years earlier.

1841: The February 1984 "Laurel Messenger" indicates that Daniel and Catharine (Sibert) Adams had a child named Lavina Adams who was born January 19, 1841 and died February 9, 1846 in Somerset County. She is buried at the Samuels Evangelical Lutheran Church Cemetery and her tombstone indicates she died on February 9, 1846 at the age of five years and 22 days.

1842: The memorial of Amos A. Adams on findagrave.com (38981627) indicates he is a son of Daniel and Catherine (Seibert) Adams. He is buried in the Elmwood Cemetery in Black Hawk County, Iowa. His tombstone indicates he was born on November 3, 1842 and died on July 31, 1810.

1845: The memorial of Mary Ann Adams on findagrave.com (210381533) indicates she is a daughter of Daniel and Catherine (Seibert) Adams, was born on March 9, 1845 and died on April 18, 1846. She is buried in the Samuels Evangelical Lutheran Church Cemetery in Somerset County.

1846: The following item is from the February 17, 1846 issue of the "Somerset Herald" newspaper:

1846: The following excerpt is from the 1918 book "History of the Alleghany Evangelical Lutheran Synod". It describes Daniel and Catherine Adams as charter members of the Lavansville Congregation, which was formed in 1846, and describes some of the church history the couple would have experienced.

1847: The memorial of Auston Adams on findagrave.com (210377956) indicates he is a son of Daniel and Catherine (Seibert) Adams, was born on January 27, 1847 and died October 14, 1847. He is buried in the Samuels Evangelical Lutheran Church Cemetery in Somerset County, Pennsylvania.

1850: Daniel Adams is enumerated in the 1850 census of Somerset Township as a 38-year-old Pennsylvania-born farmer with a value of $3,000.00. Also living in his household are 32-year-old Catherine Adams, 13-year-old Charlotte Adams, 11-year-old Eli Adams, 8-year-old Amos Adams, and 2-year-old Adaline Adams. An individual who was 38 years old in 1850 would have been born circa 1812.

1852: The following death certificate indicates that Daniel Adams was born in Somerset County, and indicates his son Wesley was born on November 23, 1852. Wesley Adams is buried in the Grandview Cemetery in Cambria County, Pennsylvania.

1855: The memorial of Albert M. Adams on findagrave.com (34235072) indicates he is a son of Daniel and Catherine (Seibert) Adams, was born on April 4, 1855, and died on January 22, 1911. He is buried in the Samuels Evangelical Lutheran Church Cemetery in Somerset County, Pennsylvania.

1857: The memorial of Samuel Sampson Adams on findagrave.com (33605981) indicates he is a son of Daniel and Catherine (Seibert) Adams, was born on May 7, 1857, died on November 11, 1929, and is buried in the Ferncliff Cemetery in Clark County, Ohio.

1860: The 1983 booklet "Gunsmiths and Gunmakers of Bedford and Somerset Counties Pennsylvania 1770-1900" puts Daniel Adams in Wayne Township of Crawford County in 1860. I can't reconcile this with the information I have found on a Daniel Adams and included herein. Either the 1983 booklet or me is writing about the wrong Daniel Adams.

Although not depository, I did not find Daniel Adams in the 1885 book "History of Crawford County, Pennsylvania". Crawford County is in far northwestern Pennsylvania.

1860: The following image is from the Somerset Township portion of the 1860 Walker map of Somerset County, Pennsylvania. It shows the residence of "D. Adams" near Lavansville.

1860: Emma (Adams) Workman is buried at the Samuels Evangelical Lutheran Church Cemetery (40.0057500, -79.1440000) near Lavansville, Somerset County. Her tombstone indicates she is a daughter of D & C Adams and died on August 3, 1894 at the age of 34 years, one month, and 25 days. Her stated age at death means she was born in 1860.

1862: The following excerpt from Volume 4 of Bates' "History of Pennsylvania volunteers, 1861-5" shows that Eli P. Adams (son of Daniel Adams) was mustered in to the 133rd Regiment of Pennsylvania Volunteers on August 14, 1862 and mustered out on May 26, 1863.

1870: Daniel Adams is enumerated in the 1870 census of Somerset Township as a 57-year-old Pennsylvania-born farmer with real estate valued at $6,000.00 and personal property valued at $1,670.00. Catherine Adams is enumerated as a 53-year-old Maryland-born individual who is keeping house. Also living in the household are 21-year-old Adaline Adams, 17-year-old Wesley Adams, 15-year-old Albert Adams, 13-year-old Sampson Adams, and 10-year-old Emma Adams, all Pennsylvania-born. An individual who was 57 years old in 1870 would have been born circa 1813.

1876: The following excerpt from the Somerset Township portion of the 1876 "County Atlas of Somerset, Pennsylvania" shows the residence of "D. Adams" near Samuels Church. As revealed below, Daniel Adams lived near Samuels Church and was a member of the congregation. The residence of Daniel Adams was located approximately at 39.997079, -79.140545.

1887: The following item is from the December 21, 1887 issue of the "Somerset Herald":

1894: The following obituary is from the August 10, 1894 issue of the "Somerset Standard" newspaper.

1896: The following item is from the June 17, 1896 issue of the "Somerset Herald". It documents the death of one of Daniel Adams' children:

1899: Daniel Adams' wife Catherine is buried at the Samuels Evangelical Lutheran Church Cemetery (40.0057500, -79.1440000) in Somerset County, Pennsylvania. Her tombstone states, Catherine wife of Daniel Adams died Jan. 30, 1899 Aged 82 ys. 2ms. 14ds." The cemetery is about 0.8-miles from the site of his residence. The following obituary appeared in the February 9, 1899 issue of the "Somerset Herald". Descendant Eric Ludy reports that Daniel Adam's wife Catherine was the daughter of Revolutionary War and War of 1812 veteran David Seibert of Allegany County, Maryland.

The preceding article appears to be the basis for the following statement in the November, 1964 issue of the "Laurel Messenger".

1900: Daniel Adams is buried at the Samuels Evangelical Lutheran Church Cemetery (40.0057500, -79.1440000), Lavansville, Somerset County, Pennsylvania. His tombstone states, "Daniel Adams July 6, 1814 Dec. 23, 1900"

The following item from the February 1984 "Laurel Messenger" provides the ancestry of the wife of Daniel Adams.

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