Once Upon a Town 27: Benjamin & Annie (HOWARD) ZARFOS


I must say, I am really confused by the who's whose of this family!  Evidently, with such large families, "Got any cute sisters?" was a question that was often asked, and followed up on to marital advantage!   


Sechrists, Howards, McGuigans, Lauckses...frankly, I'm surprised it took so many generations to connect with the Oberdorffs.  But that's another story for another time.


This is Catherine Howard LIEBERNIG, and I have no idea where she fits in.  Isn't she amazing?  I believe this is the face of someone who's seen the 18th century.  Was she Benjamin ZARFOS, Sr.'s mother-in-law, or John W. ZARFOS' grandmother-in-law?


Here's what I know about my great-great-great grandfather:

Benjamin ZARFOS

Birth: 12 May 1823 Bittersville, Lower Windsor Twp., York Co., PA

Residence: 1876 Lower Windsor Twp., York Co., PA

Death: 13 Dec 1898 Red Lion, York Co., PA

Burial: Red Lion Cemetery, Gay St., York Twp., York Co., PA

Will: 22 Dec 1898 York, York Co., PA

Religion: St. Paul’s Evangelical United Brethren, First Ave., Red Lion, York Twp., York Co., PA


Father: Samuel ZARFOS Sr. (1787-1852)

Mother: Rebecca TRAUTWEIN (1789-1860)



York, Windsor & Lower Windsor Townships, York County, Pennsylvania: Original Pennsylvania Land Records (Vol. 9), Neal Otto Hively, ISBN 0-9638435-3-2

(p.130) Survey #1938: Lower Windsor Twp.

Philadelphia Warrant: H-250

WARRANT: 9 Apr 1788, 5000 acres to Richard Howe & John Elliot

SURVEY: 9 Jan 1793, 23 acres to Howe & Elliot, called ‘The Bone’

PATENT: 17 Aug 1864, 23 acres to Benjamin Zerfoss

  H-56-214; C-100-91; York-6350


From Deed Book (Grantor Index)

4U.  Ann ZARFAUS:  Benjamin ZARFOSS & wife Ann sold tract of land in Lower Windsor Twp. to John KANN 21 Sept 1858

4F. p556:  Benjamin ZARFOS, power of attourney, sale of 82 acres to Benjamin SCHNELL of 26 Dec 1859.  Lists Rebecca, widow of Samuel ZARFOS; signed by children, etc

12A, p614:  Benjamin ZARFOS estate names Benj. F ZARFOS to receive portion of inheritance;  Recoded 5 may 1900


York 1876 Atlas, Lower Windsor Twp:  neighbors H GRAMER, A BULL, F HOWARD, G FRY.


from "St Paul's Evangelical United Brethren Church 1885-1968", First Ave, Red Lion, Penna.  Sherwood F Ritz, editor

p 10, "The Rev J H HERTZ was appointed pastor in 1888 and served the church for three years (1888-1891).  The membership in 1888 was seven but by 1890 the membership increased to eleven.  Namely:  Mr & Mrs Eli SMELTZER, Mr & Mrs John ZARFOS, Mr & Mrs Moses SMITH, Mrs Benjamin ZARFOS, Mr & Mrs Charles WEISER, Mr & Mrs R T SMITH."


No. [cut off] Filed December 22d 1989.  Last Will and Testament of Benjamin ZARFOS, late of Red Lion Borough, York County, Penna.  deceased.  Recorded in Will Book Me-Me. No.13...584etc Compared  Tax. Fees Bookforms. $5.95pd.  WA MILLER Attn.



Spouse Ann "Annie" HOWARD

Birth: 20 Sep 1827 Lower Windsor Twp., York Co., PA

Death: 24 Dec 1905

Burial: Red Lion Cemetery, Gay St., York Twp., York Co., PA


Misc. Notes

From Deed Book (Grantor Index) notes of Jetty Zarfos

14U. p123:  Ann ZARFOS creditor list, funeral expenses died 24 Dec 1905


Marriage: 7 May 1846 Evangelical Lutheran Church, Lower Windsor Twp., York Co., PA

From the York County Historical Society, ZARFOS vertical file, copy of family Bible

"I certify that on the 7 day of May 1846, I have solomized the rites of matrimony between Benjamin ZERRFOSS and Anna HOWARD of Lower Windsor  To worship according to Law in York County...my hand.  Peter HERRMANN Minister of the Ev Luth Church."



John Wesley (1847-1927)

Rebecca (1849-)

Elizabeth Ann (1851-~1910)

Eliza Jane (1854-1905)

Henrietta (1856-)

Benjamin Franklin “Frank” (1858-1942)

Amanda (1860-1943)

William Henry ‘Hal’ (1862-)

Ellen (Died as Child) (1863-1865)


Last Will & Testament of Benjamin ZARFOS

Late of Red Lion Borough, York Co., Penna., deceased

Filed 22 Dec 1898

Recorded in will Book Me.Me.

No.13 [illeg] 584&e Compared

Tax.Fees Bookedforms. $5.95.pd.

W.A.Miller Atty.


I, Benjamin Zarfos, of the borough of Red Lion, in the County of York and state of Pennsylvania, being of sound mind, memory, and understanding, do make and publish this, my last Will and Testament, hereby revoking and making void all former will by me, at any time heretofore, made.


And first, I direct that my body be decently interred according to the rites and ceremonies of my church, and that my funeral be conducted in a manner corresponding with my estate and situation in life.


As to such a state as it have to be used God to entrust me with, I dispose of the same as follows, to wit:


First, I order and direct that my beloved wife, Annie Zarfos, shall have out of my estate that which the Lord provides for widows of the intestates.


Second, as to the balance of my estate, I give, devise and bequeath to my children, share and share alike, the children of my deceased children to be entitled to such share or shares as their parent or parents respectively would have been entitled to receive if then living.


Third, as to the share of my son William H. Zarfos, as above mentioned in the second paragraph of this, my last will and testament, I order and direct that the same shall not be paid to him, my son William, but shall be paid, by my executor hereinafter named, to his wife, Charlotte E. Zarfos, her heirs and assigns, and shall not in any way be subject to the payment of the debts of the said William H. Zarfos.


Fourth, I hereby authorize and empower my hereinafter named executor to sell any or all of my real estate at public or private sale, which ever shall seem to him to be the best interests of my estate, and to make and execute a deed or deeds for the same, the same as if I could do if living, hereby granting him full power for the same.


And lastly, I do hereby make, constitute and appoint my son John W. Zarfos to be the executor of this my last will and testament.


IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I, Benjamin Zarfos, the testator, have hereunto set my hand and seal this 8th day of December, A.D., 1898


Signed, sealed, published and declared by the above named Benjamin Zarfos as and for his last will and testament, in the presence of us who have hereto subscribed our names, at his request, as witnesses hereto, in the presence of the said testator and of each other. [Puis W. Grim & George Stump]


York County, SS:

Before me John H. Waubaugh,

Register for the Probate of Wills and for granting Letters Testamentary and of Administration, in and for said County, personally appeared Pius W. Grim and George Stump the subscribing witnesses to the foregoing Last Will and Testament, who, upon being duly qualified according to law, do depose and say that they were personally present and saw and heard Benjamin Zarfos late of Red Lion borough York County, Pennsylvania, deceased, the testator, sign, seal, publish, pronounce and declare the within and foregoing instrument of writing as and for his Last Will and Testament, and at the time of his so doing he the testator was of sound and disposing mind, memory and understanding, to the best of their knowledge and belief, and that they witnessed at the same request of the testator and in their presence and in the presence of each other at the same time.

Affirmed and subscribed to before me this 22nd day of December A.D. 1898 John H. Waubaugh, Register of Wills

[Signed] Puis W. Grim & George Stump


And now, to wit: December 22nd A.D. 1898, the above Last Will and Testament of Benjamin Zarfos deceased is duly admitted to probate John H. Wambaugh Register of Wills



Benjamin Zarfos, the said decedent, died on the 13th day of December A.D. 1898; at or about the hour of 8:53 o’clock, A.M., of said day, as per affidavit of death in Book N. 9, page 338, filed on the 22nd day of December A.D. 1898.


Letters Testamentary on the foregoing Will of Benjamin Zarfos deceased, were granted to John W. Zarfos, the Executor names in the said Will, after being duly qualified according to law, on the 22nd day of December A.D. 1898. John H. Wambaugh, Register of Wills

No.191, filed December 22nd A.D. 1898.


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