Civil War graves – Wolf’s Church Cemetery

Grave of George Glatfelter, Civil War veteran buried in St. Paul’s (Wolf’s) Lutheran Church Cemetery in West Manchester Township, York County, Pennsylvania.
The name Glatfelter is well known in York County, with the P.H. Glatfelter Company (the global supplier of choice for specialty papers and engineered products) and Glatfelter Insurance. Other companies such as York International trace their heritage to the Glatfelter family, and Gettysburg College features Glatfelter Hall. Several members of the rather large clan fought in the Civil War, including George Glatfelter.
Born in Warrington Township on July 11, 1834, Glatfelter served in the 3rd Pennsylvania Cavalry (also known as the 60th Pennsylvania Volunteer Regiment). At the age of 40, he left his job as a cooper and his wife and three children and volunteered in September 1864. At the time tthe Union Army of the Potomac was slowly strangling Robert E. Lee’s Confederate Army of Northern Virginia in the Siege of Petersburg. Glatfelter is not shown on the final muster rolls of the regiment, so the date of his discharge is not known. He returned to his home in North Codorus Township, resumed his profession, and fathered another child. George Glatfelter died in 1894.

According to George Prowell’s 1907 History of York County, “St. Paul’s Lutheran and Reformed Church is locally known in this township as Wolf’s Church, in honor of Peter Wolf, an early settler. In 1762 two and one-half acres were purchased from Adam Zeigler for 5 pounds, six shillings, 5 pence, for church property. In 1763 a congregation was organized by Rev. Nicholas Hornell, then pastor of the Christ Lutheran Church at York, and a frame church was built. About twenty-five years later this building was enlarged and remodeled. In 1855 the present large and commodious church was built while the Lutheran congregation was under the pastoral care of Rev. C. J. Deininger, and the Reformed under Rev. Daniel Zeigler.
The ministers present at the cornerstone laying of the present church were Revs. A. G. Deininger and J. Bossler. The successive pastors of the Lutheran congregation were Revs. Hornell, Bager, N. Kurtz, Jacob Goering, J. G. Schmucker, J. Oswald, A. G. Deininger, C. J. Deininger, and J. H. Leeser. Rev. Adam Stump D. D., has been pastor since 1890. The congregation had a membership in 1907 of 400. The Reformed congregation was first served by the pastors from York, including Revs. Jacob Lischy, George Geistweite and others. Revs. Daniel Zeigler, W. Kehm, Jacob Zeigler and I. S. Weisz succeeded each other in the order named. Rev. O. P. Schellhamer has been pastor since 1894. The congregation in 1907 had a membership of 200. The church is located in a rich agricultural region, about five miles west of York, one-third of a mile south of the “old five mile house” originally owned by Peter Wolf, on the York and Gettysburg Turnpike.
The attendance at Wolf’s Church is very large, and it has for 144 years been a central point of interest in this township.”
Martin Buehler was a native of West Manchester Township. At the start of the Civil War, the 19-year-old blacksmith traveled down to Hanover and enlisted in a three-month regiment, the 16th Pennsylvania. He and his comrades saw combat along the Potomac River at Falling Waters against Stonewall Jackson. In August 1862, he re-enlisted, this time in the 130th Pennsylvania, a nine-month regiment. Buehler was promoted in January 1863 to corporal. He returned home after mustering out that May, and later married and raised a very large family.
Peter Senft was a 33-year-old laborer from Jackson Township at the time he was drafted into the 166th Pennsylvania Infantry in early November 1862. Married with six children to feed on the meager army pay, Senft served until July 1863 when his term expired.
Like Senft, Henry Wolf was a draftee in the 166th Pennsylvania. Part of the Wolf family that gave its name to Wolf’s Church, Henry was a 22-year-old laborer at the time he became a soldier in the Union Army. According to researcher Dennis Brandt, Wolf “in 1860, lived with and/or worked for farmer Jacob Glatfelter in West Manchester Township.” Wolf died in 1907; his widow Salome is buried in York’s Prospect Hill Cemetery.
Andrew Schrum also served in the 166th Pennsylvania, a regiment of drafted militia. He was 23 years old at the time of his mustering into the army in downtown York. He mustered out in July 1863 and died less than a month later.

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4 Responses to Civil War graves – Wolf’s Church Cemetery

  1. Barbara Gallagher says:

    My great-great-grandmother’s (Eleanor Rebecca Swartz Wagner) father was buried at that cemetery – Jacob Swartz. He served as a conscript in the PA militia during the Civil War. We visit his grave each year. He has a star in front of his grave from the GAR.

  2. Scott Mingus says:

    Jacob Harbaugh Swartz served in Company C of the 166th Pennsylvania Drafted Militia.
    Although Jacob was only 17 at the time, he claimed to be 18 and enrolled in York on Oct 24, 1862, as a paid substitute for Jacob King. He mustered into the 166th on November 8, 1862. He served until Jul 28, 1863, when the regiment’s term of service expired. Swartz received an honorable discharged that same day.
    He was born Feb 27, 1845, in Paradise Township, the son of Jacob & Anna Maria Catherine Harbaugh Swartz; siblings: Henry, Elenora, and Edward; married Sarah Yost Stambaugh November 26, 1871; children: Robert S. (b. @1874), George (b. @1875), Emma J. (b. @1876); in 1890, lived in West Manchester Township, York County; died Feb 13, 1920, in Taxville, West Manchester Township West Manchester Twp., York Co.
    His occupation was as a carpenter, and the 1860 U.S. Census values his net worth as $1600. At the time of his enlistment he was 5′ 8″ and had red hair and hazel eyes.
    Information provided by Dennis W. Brandt from his Database of York County Soldiers (on-line on the website of the York County Heritage Trust).

    • Barbara Gallagher says:

      Where did the 166th pa militia company c serve? I know that my great great grandfather, Jacob Swartz, walked to the 50th Reunion of the Battle of Gettysburg from his home in west York pa…he must have been in his 70’s….he kept a diary of his travel to the event. My
      great grandmother said that people knew the old timers were headed to Gettysburg for the reunion and so they put people up in their homes and gave them food and water for their travels….However, I don’t think that he served at Gettysburg…we do have a gun from the Gettysburg battlefield but how we got it I do not know. He took the money that he made as a conscript as a downpayment on his farm on Taxville rd.

      • Scott Mingus says:

        166th PA Regiment Organization, Service & Battles

        Organized at York October 24 to December 8, 1862.
        Moved to Washington, D.C., thence to Newport News and Suffolk, Va., December 8-17.
        Attached to Foster’s Brigade. Division at Suffolk, Va., 7th Corps, Dept. of Virginia, to April, 1863.
        2nd Brigade, 1st Division, 7th Corps, to July 1863.
        Service & Battles – 1863
        Duty at Suffolk till June, 1863.
        Expedition toward Blackwater January 8-10, 1863.
        Deserted House January 30. Leesville April 4.
        Siege of Suffolk April 11-May 4.
        Edenton, Providence Church and Somerton Roads April 12-13.
        Somerton Road April 15 and 20.
        Edenton Road April 24.
        Operations on Seaboard & Roanoke Railroad May 12-26.
        Holland House, Carrsville, May 15-16.
        Dix’s Peninsula Campaign June 27-July 7.
        Expedition from White House to South Anna River July 1-7.
        South Anna Bridge July 4.
        Moved to Washington, D.C., July 8.
        Mustered out July 28, 1863.

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