The Johann Adam and Anna Maria (Mertz)
Family of Berks and Schuylkill Counties, Pennsylvania
What the Reviewers Are Saying....The following critical review appeared in the June 2010 edition of the the prestigeous National Genealogical Society Quarterly on page 153, and is reprinted here with permission.
Johann Adam and Anna Maria (Mertz) Zehner Family of Berks and Schuylkill Counties, Pennsylvania. By William J. Zehner. Published by Tennessee Valley Publishing; Post Office Box 52527; Knoxville, TN 37950-2527; 2009. Order from the author: 1022 Paton Lane; Lynn Haven, FL 32444; or http://www.northwestfloridagenealogy. com/zehnerfamily. 307 pp. Illustrations, index, maps, photographs. Hardcover. $37 (shipping included).
As Zehner acknowledges, his book's original version was submitted as part of a Board for Certification of Genealogists portfolio. Additional information, maps, and illustrations have been added to the present volume. The result is a thorough and well-documented treatment of a German immigrant family of the mid-eighteenth century to Pennsylvania and their descendants through three subsequent generations, roughly to about 1880.
Zehner begins with detailed information on the book's contents. He describes and explains the organization of the material, sources, names and their variants, and land record terminology, and he outlines others' work on the subject family.
Nothing definitive regarding Adam Zehner's German origin is known, and the narrative begins with his arrival in Philadelphia in 1754. From Adam's marriage about 1759, the bulk of the book is a compiled genealogy. Virtually all factual statements are fully sourced in the extensive footnotes.|
The thirty-two plates of illustrations collected in the center of the book complement the text admirably. Among them are land patents, a Civil War soldier's muster record, tax lists, land surveys, newspaper obituaries, photographs of family groups and gravestones, and a colored map showing the spread of Zehner descendants to other states from Pennsylvania. The index of place and personal names is well organized.
William Zehner has produced a four-generation study of the family of a German immigrant to colonial Pennsylvania that ably serves as a model for other such endeavors. The book lacks only a place of origin for Adam Zehner. Anyone who has sought the hometown of a German ancestor knows the many pitfalls such research engenders. Such a frustrating lacuna does not, however, detract in any way from the usefulness of this book, whether for Zehner descendants in a narrow sense or for a wider audience to whom the style and methodology are equally instructive.
Norman D. Nicol, Ph.D.
Harvey's Lake, Pennsylvania
What the Readers Are Saying....
... the book arrived and I love it. Congratulations! I am looking forward for the next edition. DZR, Danville, Pennsylvania
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