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Herman Groethausen Family

Herman Groethausen
(Abt 1670-1743)


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Herman Groethausen

  • Born: Abt 1670, , , , Germany
  • Marriage: Unknown
  • Died: 27 Oct 1743, Springfield Manor, Germantown, Pennsylvania about age 73

bullet  Notes:

Herman is thought to have been a tile maker, and an accomplished violinist. He came to America in 1710. In 1742 Herman built a home at 901 E. Abington Avenue, Wyndmoor, PA. It was purchased by Mr. and Mrs. Geoghegan, who restored it. Mr. Geohegan passed away in 1995, and Mrs. Geohegan still resides in the home at this time. She is has continued to be welcoming to the several Greathouse researchers who have visited her.

Lois Gindlesperger letter speculates place of birth as Westfalia, Germany. Shows name as Harmon. She also shows another generation Herman Groethausen b. 1653, Prussia, Germany and married Anna Maria Hemmers. She has no documentation to support this.
New evicdence collectd by Vivian Taylor suggests Herman and Family may be from Bielefeld Germany

Louise Johnson was the first of our researchers to transcribe this will. We are indebted to her.

Will: Abstracts of Philadelphia Co. Wills, 1682-1726, Book G. Will dated 19 Oct 1742, probated 16 Nov 1743.
Various spellings Herman/Harmon Groothouse/Grothaus.

Philadelphia County, Penn., Will Book G., p. 49. Will made 19 Oct. 1743. Probated 16 Nov. 1743.

In the name of God Amen the nineteenth day of October in the year of our Lord 1743 I Harman Grothausen of Springfield Manner in the County of Philadelphia Yeoman being very sick & weak in body but of perfect Mind and Memory Thanks be given unto God therefore calling into Mind the Mortality of my body and knowing that it is appointed for all men once to Dye do make and Ordain this my last will and testament That is to say Principally and first of all I give and Recommend my Soul into the hands of God that gave it and for my Body I recommend it to the Earth to (be) buried in a Christian Like and decent manner at the descretion of my Executors nothing doubting but at the general Resurrection I shall receive the same again by the mighty power of God And touching such Worldly Estate whereof it hath pleased God to Bless me in this I give devise and dispose of the same in the following manner and form--Imprimis it is my will and I do order That in the first place all my just debts and funeral Charges be paid and satisfied Item I give and bequeath unto my well beloved sons Henry & John Grothausen whom I likewise Constitute make and ordain my Executors of this my Last Will and Testament all and singular the Lands messuages and Tenements and moveables to be equally divided and so hereby utterly disallow evoke and disannul every other former Wills and Testaments Legacy's & Executors by me in any ways before this time named willed and bequeathed--Ratifying & Confirming this and no other to be my Last Will and Testament In witness whereof I have hereunto set my Hand & Seal the Day and Year above written------------ Herman Grothausen {Seal}

Signed Sealed Published Pronounced and Declared by me the said Harman Grothausen as his Last Will and Testament in the presence of us the Subscribers Viz &C. Johan Philip de Bertholt Wigard Miller & Cornelius Nice the witnesses to the foregoing Will and the said Johan Philip De Bertholt on his Solemn Affirmation and the said Wigard Miller & Cornelius Nice on their oath respectively did declare they saw and heard Herman Grothausen the testator therein named Sign Seal Publish & Declare the same Will to be his Last Will and Testament and that at the doing thereof he was of Sound Mind Memory and Understanding to the best of their knowledge---Coram

Pet'd Hodgson D. Reg'r

Be it Remembered that on the 16th. Nov'r 1743 The Last Will and Testament of Herman Grothausen deceased was proved in due form of Law and Probat & Letters Testamentary were granted to John & Henry Grothausen the Executors therein named the said John having first Solemnly Sworn and the sd. Henry having first solemnly affirmed well and truly to administer the said Dece'd entr (?) Estate and bring in an Inventory thereof into the Register Generals Office at Philad'a on or before the 16th. of December next And also to render a true and just accompt, (sic account), when thereunto lawfully required Given under the Seal of the said office

Pet'd Evans Reg'r Gen'l


bullet  Details of his life include:

Front of Herman Groethausen Home Photo Herman sold the land that this house is on to John in 1740. The engraving is 1742. I believe the house may have always been John and Amelia's house, since it was their land at the time the house was built. Herman didn't sell any of his land to Henry. John and Henry did inherit the unsold remainder of the land. After Herman's death, Henry and John jointly sold 50 acres to a George Rex.

There is a theory that the family lived on Mermaid St, prior to this house being built. Herman's house may have been the one on Mermaid St. Herman may have moved in with John and Amelia, after their house was built, just a year before his death. There is a house nearly identical to John and Amelia's house on Mermaid St.
Photos of Herman Groethausen Home and comments by Sandy Taylor 1

Herman Groethausen Home Capstone. Photo
As you can see the inscription in the peak is:


As Vivian (Taylor) pointed out, I is often written for J in the old English and German. It also appears that they did Great House as two words…

So, I believe this is "John Great House and Amelia Great House, 1742".

I almost missed finding the inscription. Since it is always referred to as a cornerstone, I was looking for it at the base of the house. It's high up in the peak, as you can see from the second picture. ..


Inscription on Herman Groethausen Home Photo There are other engravings in the face of the house. They are nearly impossible to read, but I did take pictures of them. The house was covered in stucco by one of the later tenants. It has been restored and one of the later tenants removed the stucco revealing the above engraving and others. One engraving appears to me to be WM for William, I presume. Others are impossible to read.


photo St.Michaels Luthern, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

St . Michaels Photos by Sandy Taylor

St. Michael's Lutheran Church Cornerstone Photo


Herman married.



1 Sandy Taylor.

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