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PA Dutch people - any Serfass out there?

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  • PA Dutch people - any Serfass out there?

    Reading Charles Kerchner's page and a lot of the posts here makes me want to check out a theory - do any of you PA Dutch people with odd East Asian or Native American DNA test results have anybody in your family line named Serfass (or variations Servas, Searfoss, etc.)?

  • #2
    Although I am not a descendant as far as I know, could you be looking for the name Servos? Daniel Servos was an officer in the Indian Department of British North America after the American Revolution. He is rumoured to have had a Native wife and children.

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    • #3
      He could be a Servas - there are so many spellings - but he's not who I'm looking for. He's not in my line, if he is a Servas. Thanks anyway.

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      • #4
        Did you know there is a Cearfoss Pike in Washington County, Maryland ? There were plenty of Germans in that county & Frederick Co.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Pleroma
          Although I am not a descendant as far as I know, could you be looking for the name Servos? Daniel Servos was an officer in the Indian Department of British North America after the American Revolution. He is rumoured to have had a Native wife and children.
          Pleroma,

          That was FAST! Do you have a card file at your side filled with Native-Anglo intermarriage data? Got a HILES or NELSON in there? Although the names don't sound right I am looking for a French-Indian mix for either surname for Pennsylvania, Upper Midwest and/or North Dakota.

          Tom

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          • #6
            I wish I had such a card file. My limited knowledge is mostly regarding early Canadian history.

            There is a website on Metis genealogy that you may not be aware of. They have a great number of genealogy links including many from the States. Here is the link:

            http://www.othermetis.net/AboGene/genelink.html

            I hope this helps.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by ragnar
              Did you know there is a Cearfoss Pike in Washington County, Maryland ? There were plenty of Germans in that county & Frederick Co.

              Yes, I knew - I used to work in Hagerstown. It actually goes to Cearfoss (yet another spelling of the same name). I'm sure it's part of the Serfas clan. Are you?

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              • #8
                No, I'm not a member of the Serfas etc family. I was trying to track my Aley & Yakly lines in Washington county, MD, pre -1803. There was one christening at Cearfoss Pike of an Aley (Ely, Eli, Ehli, Ailey) offspring.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by ragnar
                  No, I'm not a member of the Serfas etc family. I was trying to track my Aley & Yakly lines in Washington county, MD, pre -1803. There was one christening at Cearfoss Pike of an Aley (Ely, Eli, Ehli, Ailey) offspring.
                  Interesting. Some of my family members were among the first settlers in Washington County, like Garrett Snedeker.

                  I'm PA Deutsch, too, but I don't have any Servos, etc., that I know of.

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                  • #10
                    Dutch name

                    Originally posted by N4321
                    He could be a Servas - there are so many spellings - but he's not who I'm looking for. He's not in my line, if he is a Servas. Thanks anyway.
                    Hello,
                    I'm not Dutch,but I know the exact spelling:SERVAES

                    Good luck.
                    Nas

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by nas
                      Hello,
                      I'm not Dutch,but I know the exact spelling:SERVAES

                      Good luck.
                      Nas
                      PA Dutch has nothing to do with "Dutch". They are German..... sorry it's a pet peeve.

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                      • #12
                        Servas is a German name, but the Dutch name you gave may be another variant of the same family.

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                        • #13
                          Zerfass/Cerfass/Cearfoss etc out of Lancaster

                          Originally posted by N4321
                          Yes, I knew - I used to work in Hagerstown. It actually goes to Cearfoss (yet another spelling of the same name). I'm sure it's part of the Serfas clan. Are you?
                          I'm a descendant of Johan Nicholaus Zerfass, an immigrant from the French-German border (Stromberg) to Philadelphia in 1740. He married Elizabeth Clap/Klop and they lived in Cocalico Twp, Lancaster Co, Pa. I'm 90% certain the Cearfoss near Hagerstown was founded by one of his descendants - I'm not sure which. Nicolaus's son Daniel is in most records as Daniel Cerfass and lived near Carlisle, Pa. after growing up in Lancaster Co. These are my direct ancestors (Daniel's daughter Rebecca married James Delany of Carlisle in 1812).

                          I can't be any help on the DNA side since this isn't my surname line, but I do have a fair bit of info on this branch of Zerfass (Servas etc) families. I have never seen any rumors of anything other than marriages to fellow German immigrants or (later) others like my James Delany whose father is thought to have been Irish.

                          My grandfather had written a note showing a Delany married to Ceaphos ?, with the latter looking and sounding like a first name. The first indication I had that this might be a surname was driving on Interstate 81 just west of Hagerstown and seeing the exit sign for Cearfoss. I suddenly realized that Ceaphos might be a phonetic corruption of Cearfoss and that maybe I should look for the latter. I did and immediately found a Mary Cerfass next to a James Delany in the 1820 census. You never know which clue will be helpful... / Tom Gull

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                          • #14
                            TAGull - Thanks for responding. I actually descend from Johan Philip Servas, who came about the same time as your ancestor. They could have been brothers, I suppose. Of course, the same first name - Johan - is kind of irrelevant with this generation of Germans, since they got saint's names first and the given name second.

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                            • #15
                              First name usage

                              Yes, I had some trouble researching one German ancestor in Pennsylvania at the beginning until I realized that most government records would list him by his middle name, as would many less formal sources. Formal Protestant church records usually used first and middle names.

                              I had one ancestor with five or six sons and all shared Johan as the first name. / Tom

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