early settlers of Emmitsburg, resided in that community
as it grew into a town, then a city for over a century.
They owned property there, and they were instrumental in
promoting its progress, both civically and financially,
they attended its Lutheran and Presbyterian churches.
About thirty Danner children were reared within its
boundaries. While there, their lives encompassed three
wars: the American Revolution, the War of 1812, and the
War between the States. The Danner family intermarried
with the Agnews, the Gambles, the Crooks, and the
Potterfields; with thirty Danner children, I'm sure
there were many more Emmitsburg surnames involved.
Dietrich (Teter, Deter, Teator) was the David Danner
on page 12 of Helman's "History of Emmitsburg,
Maryland." the name David was undoubtedly a "fraktur"
of Dietrich. Dietrich and his brother Michael arrived in
the Philadelphia port in 1742 from the area of Frankfort
on the Rhine, Germany. They were probably part of the
emigrants fleeing the Palatinate mentioned by Helman.
Dietrich, a blacksmith, settled in a community called
Bridgeport, located between Taneytown and Emmitsburg in
Frederick County. Dietrich and wife Barbara were members
of the Tom's Creek Lutheran Church. (Elias Lutheran
Church was located at Tom's Creek from 1757 to 1797 -
ed.) Barbara bore Dietrich seven children: five
daughters and two sons, Jacob and David, to carry on the
Danner name. Dietrich died in 1768 and is buried in the
Tom's Creek Lutheran Cemetery. Helman says his tome is
said to be the oldest in the community.
Dietrich's sons Jacob and David purchased lots in
Emmitsburg in 1785. Jacob (1763-1791) is the next in my
direct Danner ancestral line. His avocation was listed
by Helman as a merchant in the tailoring trade in
Emmitsburg. Jacob married Rachael and reared five
children in Emmitsburg, three sons and two daughters.
Jacob passed away in 1841 and Rachael a short time later
in 1842. They are both buried in the Emmitsburg (Elias)
Joseph Danner (1796 — 1840), son of Jacob and
Rachael, is my next direct descendent in the Danner
family. He was the first to break from the Lutheran
ranks to join the Presbyterians when he married Martha
Agnew, a Scottish lass from Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, in
January, 1824. He purchased a lot in Emmitsburg in an
area formerly known as the Shields Addition. I assume
his trade was that of a builder. Helman backs into
establishing Joseph's trade on page 82 of his book by
referring to the location of Lowherd's Tavern
"where the store-house now stands, erected by
Joseph Danrier in 1838."
Joseph's untimely death in 1840 at the age of 44
years left his widow with several young children,
ranging from one born the year of Joseph's death to a
seven-year-old son, Joseph Warren Danner, my next direct
ancestor in the Danner family tree. Joseph and Martha
had ten children, all born in Emmitsburg. Martha died in
1894; she was 92 years old. Both she and Joseph are
buried in the Emmitsburg Presbyterian Cemetery.
The 1850 Emmitsburg, Frederick County census shows
Joseph Warren Danner, now seventeen years old, as being
in the dwelling of one David Gamble. David and brother
William Gamble were saddlers in Emmitsburg in the early
and mid-l8th century. It is believed that Joseph Warren
Danner was a harness and saddle making apprentice with
the Gambles; harness-making was the avocation that took
Joseph Warren into the cavalry of the Confederate States
during the Civil War.
Private Joseph Warren Danner enlisted in the North
Carolina Troops in Wayne County, North Carolina, at the
age of 25 on June 20, 1861. He was captured in early
skirmishes with Union troops at Urbana, Maryland, on
October 11, 1962, but was paroled and exchanged at
Aiken's Landing, Virginia, on November 10 of that year.
He was captured again at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, on
July 3, 1863, and was imprisoned at Fort Delaware,
Delaware, until transferred to Point Lookout, Maryland,
on October 18, 1863. He was paroled and exchanged on
November 22, 1864, when he joined his unit at Camp Lee,
Virginia, to continue fighting. The war was over for
Joseph Warren Danner on April 9, 1865, at the signing of
Lee's surrender at Appomattox.
Joseph Warren was part of J.E.B. Stuart's cavalry as
they made their way up through Virginia, Maryland, and
into Gettysburg. Ironically, the reports of Stuart's
charge led Joseph right through Emmitsburg. His mother,
Martha, was still alive; it is reported that brothers
and cousins (Agnews) of Joseph were fighting the same
war, only for the Federal Union. Another piece of irony
is that Joseph was imprisoned for more than a year in
one of the worst Northern prisons of the war, Point
Joseph returned to North Carolina after being paroled
to rejoin his wife whom he had married during one of his
leaves; he picked up the trade he had learned from the
Gambles of Emmitsburg. He, his wife, and their three
children migrated to Texas after an unsuccessful attempt
to make a living in North Carolina. The war and
imprisonment had taken their toll on Joseph, however,
and he spent the latter part of his life in deep
depression. In 1901 he died in the local asylum in
Terrell, Texas. A veteran's tombstone in memory of
Joseph Warren Danner has been placed next to that of his
wife Mary Elizabeth Jordan Danner in Greenwood Cemetery,
Read Ed Houck's: Remembering
Read other family histories
Do you know of an
individual who helped shape Emmitsburg?
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