An American Family History

Anthony Yerkes

“Remember, remember always, that all of us, and you and I especially, are descended from immigrants and revolutionists."
― Franklin D. Roosevelt
Yerkes has also been spelled Gerkes, Gerckes, Jerghes, Jerghjes, Jurckes,Yercas, Yercks, Yerkhas, Yerkas, Yerkiss, Yerks, and Yerkus

Home of Anthony Yerkes in the Pennypack Creek area of the Manor of Moreland. It was inherited by Herman Yerkes.

Byberry is a township in the northeast corner of Philadelphia County, Pennsylvania. The Walton brothers were early settlers. Moreland Township was just west of Byberry. When Montgomery County broke off in 1784, Moreland was divided into two townships, both called Moreland. In 1917 the Montgomery County Moreland split into Upper Moreland Township and Lower Moreland Township.

Anthony Yerkes was born in 1663 in Germany or Holland. 

He was a farmer. He married Margaret about 1687. Their children and life together are described in detail in the section on Anthony and Margaret Yerkes. Margaret was born about 1687 in Holland. She died before November 17, 1705.

On September 11, 1702, he served as a juryman before the Court of Record in Germantown, Pennsylvania. On December 28, 1703 he became one of the three burgesses of Germantown.

He married his son's mother-in-law, Sarah Eaton Watts, the widow of the Reverend John Watts in Philadelphia on September 9, 1709.  After that he settled in the Manor of Moreland.

In 1710 he became a member of the Low Dutch Reformed Church in Whitemarsh Township. 

His residence, mentioned in a deed dated June 11, 1719, was Dublin Township where his wife's relatives lived. He may have retired there.

In 1729 he was naturalized. The assembly declared him entitled to the rights and privileges of subjects of the king.

He died before 1744 in Moreland, Pennsylvania.

The Manor of Moreland was composed of a tract of ten thousand acres, and was created, in 1682, by a grant from William Penn to Dr. Nicholas More. Most of the Manor was in Philadelphia County, but is now Moreland Township, Montgomery County, Pennsylvania.
Old Style Calendar
Before 1752 the year began on Lady Day, March 25th,. Dates between January 1st and March 24th were at the end of the year. Old Style (O.S.) and New Style (N.S.) are used to indicate whether the year has been adjusted. Often both dates are used.
Germantown Township, Pennsylvania was originally settled by German Quakers and Mennonites in 1681. It was divided into settlements, called Germantown, Cresheim, Sommerhausen and Crevelt. The township became part of the city of Philadelphia in 1854.



Chronicle of the Yerkes Family, with Notes on the Leech and Rutter Families by Josiah Granville Leach

The place of nativity of Anthony Yerkes remains a matter of conjecture. It has been assumed by others that he was a German, but the writer has found no evidence to establish such assumption. It is possible, however, that he came to Pennsylvania from Germany, and was a resident of the latter country at the time of his emigration. But, wheresoever the place of his birth, there are some items of circumstantial evidence which tend to indicate that he was of Holland descent. This evidence is found in the facts that he became a member of the Low Dutch Reformed Church organized in 1710 in Whitemarsh Township, Philadelphia (now Montgomery) County; that most of his fellow church-members were of Dutch birth or of Dutch descent; and that another of his surname, undoubtedly a Hollander, earlier emigrated to New York, and was a member of the Dutch Church in that city.

Colonial Maryland
Colonial New England
Colonial Virginia & West Virginia
Quakers & Mennonites
New Jersey Baptists
German Lutherans
Watauga Settlement
Pennsylvania Pioneers
Midwest Pioneers
Jewish Immigrants

©Roberta Tuller 2023
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