|Notes for "Elder" John Koontz|
Much of the Koontz information is from the book
son of John (Cuntz) Koontz and Anna Elizabetha Catherine Stoever married Elizabeth Baker who was a sister to the second wife of Daniel Mauck who owned the farm where D.W. Brubaker once resided, and died in 1802. Elizabeth Baker's father came to this country from London, England. (Ref. 10) John married Elizabeth in the early 1760's as his eldest son Jacob was born 1764. (Ref. tombstone cemetery 82-A)
John born 26 Mar. 1739 in Opequon, Va. in Frederick Co., Va. (Ref. 203, p. 13) He died 25 Apr. 1832 in Page Co. near Alma, Va. and buried in cemetery 73. The tombstone was removed from the Koontz Shuler Cemetery by Carroll R. Shuler of Stanley and placed in a cement and rock memorial to the Reverand John Koontz which stands in the Seekford Cemetery in Alma, Va. In talking with Carroll R. Shuler he stated that the body had not been disinterred and that he had taken the tombstone from near the center of the Koontz Shuler Cemetery where the body still remains. The date on the limestone slab is hand carved and is still quite legible. The foregoing date is correct for it is not only listed on the tombstone that way but Elder John had a will probated 28 May 1832. Two things have confused the issue: one, Elder John had a son who died in 1831 and his son's will was probated Dec., 1831 and secondly the Mill Creek Church records state death in the church since the beginning of the year 1832 probably recording this at the end of that calendar year. The church record states "Edward Holmes, Eld. John Koontz; since 1832, " meaning since 1832 began not before 1832.
It is not known when Elizabeth was born as her grave was not marked by an engraved tombstone in the Koontz Shuler Cemetery but she died between 1825-1826 as the church records (Ref. 18) show her death in the list of deceased members just before members known to have died in 1827. (Ref. 202, p. 100) She is not listed in the 1830 census of Page Co. with her husband.
John, living near Winchester, Va. was impressed by the message of Baptist preachers and hence traveled to Fauquier County and was baptized there December, 1768. With his return to the Winchester area he began preaching, and in November, 1770 he visited his brother George who lived in the area of Mill Creek and soon began preaching there. John continued to live near Winchester and visited lilill Creek. (Ref. 212, pp. 184-189, Ref. 18, Ref. 213, Ref 214) He converted Martin Kaufman II from the Mennonite religion to the Baptist faith. Martin Kaufman's father, Martin Kaufman I, was a Mennonite minister who came to the valley from Lancaster Co., Penn and on 23 Feb. 1736 bought the land along the Shenandoah River where Route 211 crosses it. (Ref. 94) John Koontz and Martin Kaufman II both could speak German and English and were very successful preachers and by 1772 had organized a Baptist congregation. John was ordained a minister and gained his title of Elder John Koontz between 1772-1775. (Ref. 212, pp. 184-189) In October, 1776 John Countz was deeded 86 acres of landin Shenandoah Co., that section that later became Page Co. (Ref. 215 "B", p. 426) It is thought John Counts came to live in the Mill Creek section about this same time.
[Monument to Elder John Koontz - This inscription is inscribed on the memorial:
"In Memory of Elder John Koontz
died Apr. 25, 1832 between 80 and 90 sic, (93) years of age.
No primitive Baptist preacher suffered more at the hands of opposers.
No primitive Baptist preacher surpassed him in his devotion to his Lord and his people.
Like Abraham of old Elder Koontz was "Strong in the faith, giving glory to God; and being fully persuaded that what he had promised he was able also to performÓ Rom. 4:20. "]
Elder John Koontz was pastor of the Mill Creek Baptist Church for about 50 years. German Mennonites from Pennsylvania sent several preachers to the Valley to work against Elder John and the Baptist movement. Some of the local people opposed Elder John Koontz more physically. Once while he was on his way to preach he was seized on the road by a mob and was severely beaten. He was later seized and threatened with imprisonment for preaching without authorization. (Ref. 202, pp. 242-247) John Countz and Martin Kaufman were so successful in converting Mennonites to Baptist that there are very few Mennonites found in Page Co., Va. today. On 25 Aug. 1785 John Counts obtained certification to perform marriages bom Shenandoah Co., Va. and signed his name clearly Counts.
In the year 1805 there was a disagreement in the practice of slavery which resulted in Martin Kaufman, Lewis Seits, and Samuel Comer separating from the Mill Creek Church with a group of followers that moved to Fairfield County, Ohio. The church there was called Pleasant Run and in 1806 the Ohio Association of which Pleasant Run was a member stated the following "We do not wish to correspond with any association or church that does in principle or practice hold involuntary slavery. " Not far from Granville in Ohio is a small place called Luray after Luray, Va. There is also a Luray in Fayette Co., Ohio. (Ref. 17, pp. 272-275)
Elder John Koontz and his wife Elizabeth are found in the following Deeds of Shenandoah Co., Va. (1) Oct. 1776 David Coffman of Dunmore Co. to John Countz of Dunmore Co. 86 acres as listed before. (Ref. 215 Book "B", p. 4263 (Note: Part of Shenandoah Co. was known as Dunmore Co. till 1778. ) (2) March 24, 1784 Christian Bumgardner to John Countz 2 acres on Hawksbill Creek. (Ref. 215 Book "E", p. 49) (3) March 29, 1786 John Koontz to Daniel Mauck 86 acres sold him by Coffman and deed signed by John's wife Elizabeth. Ref. 215 Book "F", p. 16) (4) Aug. 31, 1786 Lewis Bibber sic (Biedler)and Barbara his wife to John Koontz 127 acres. (Ref. 215 Book "F", pv 239) (5) June 14, 1806 John Koontz, Sr. and Elizabeth his wõfe to Isaac Koontz 134 acres bought from Bibber dc. (Biedler)and Coffnan. (Ref. 215 Book "P", p. 201)
The will of Elder John Koontz was dated 14 Mar. 1807 but not probated until 28 May 1832. (Ref. 211 Book "A", pp. 26-27) The following is the will of Elder John Koontz.
In the Name of God, Amen - I John Koontz of Shenandoah County and State of Virginia, being in common bodily health and perfect mind and recollection, thanks be unto God for the same - do make and ordain this my last will and testament in manner following, (to- wit). Firstly: It is my will that all my just debts should be paid first; Secondly: I give and bequeath to my beloved wife Elizabeth, all the property which I have and possess to her own proper use and enjoyment as she may choose to apply it or find necessary during her natural life time, and after her death I give and bequeath unto my three sons, Jacob, John and Isaac Koontz each one and equal part in that which may remain. As to my daughter, Elizabeth, which is dead I have had given her in her lifetime all which I intended to give her or her heirs; Thirdly: I do hereby appoint my three sons, Jacob, John, and Isaac Koontz my sole executors of my last will and testament; Fourthly: I do hereby disannul and make void all former wills by me made, ratifying, confirming and declaring this and no other to be my last will and testament in witness whereof. I have hereunto set my hand and seal this 14th day of March, Eighteen hundred and seven
[John Koontz (seal) Signed, sealed and delivered in the presence of us. Roads, Joseph Mauch, Jonas Rufiner, David Varner, Christian Aleshire, Benjamin Wood.
Acknowledge before me on the 9th day of Dec., 1828.
Jos. Strickler At a court held for the county of Page on Monday the 28th day of May 1832. The written will of John Koontz was produced to the Court by Isaac Koontz and proved by the oath of Jonas Ruffner and Joseph Strickler, witnesses thereto, and ordered to be recorded.
Teste: William A. Harris, Clerk]
The preceding will is taken from (Ref. 211 Book "A", pp. 26-27 (Ref. 17, p. 282) lists W.B. "A" p. 153 which is incorrect.
Just across the Shenandoah River from Alma, Va. on the north side of 340 is located the home of Elder John Koontz. Elder John Koontz bought this house and property of 112 A. on 27 Aug. 1814 from David and Margaret Huffman. (Ref. 215 B30k "V", p. 303) John willed this to his ch. (Ref. 211 Book "A", pp. 26-27) The house was later deeded to Isaac Koontz then to Andrew Jackson Shuler as verified by the following refs. (Ref. 204 Book "E", p. 477, Book "G", pp. 116-118, Book "IsI", p. 274) Earlier Elder John Koontz lived on the Hawksbill Creek.
Jacob bought land from John Pence on 29 Sept. 1791. (Ref. 215 Book "H", p. 204) The 1830 census shows Elder John Koontz and Isaac lived in the 2 1/2 story log structure with immense rock chimneys at both ends and tiny paned windows. It had a full cellar beneath. (Ref. 216, pp. 47 & 53) The house was just below the old Koontz Shuler Cemetery 73. The compiler first visited the house in 1973. It had been torn down since Ann Kerkhoff had written about it. It had been used as a chicken house for some time before it was torn down as one could see from old chicken feeders still under some of the floor boards and debris. What a poor fate for such an historic log home
During the Civil War in the winter of 1862 a small group of Yankees used the house as their winter quarters. (Ref. 216, pp. 56, 57, 60) At this time Andrew Jackson Shuler was living there as he had married Juliana Ann Koontz the great granddaughter of Elder John Koontz. The property had passed from Isaac Newton Koontz, Sr., son of Elder John Koontz, born 1777 to Isaac Newton Koontz, Jr born 1810 to Andrew Jackson Shuler born in 1831.
4. Jacob Koontz born 1764 married Barbara Beaver died Oct. 1819, age 53 years
5. John Koontz born 1765 married Amelia Powell
6. Elizabeth Koontz called "Eliz" b, between 1767-1770 married Henry Pence
7. Isaac Newton Koontz born 14 Feb. 1777 married Susannah Kiblinger
From: Richard Pence email@example.com
Martin Coffman and John Koonk were pastors of the Mill Creek Baptist Church located west of Luray, Va., in the village of Hamburg. lt is still standing and is now dubbed "the Mauck Meeting House," after Daniel Mauck, who donated the land for the building. Philadelphia Woodman's will reflects the split in the congregation, many of whom had been converted from the Mennonite faith, at the time of the Revolution. Some held to "the old ways of the Mennonites and thought it an article of faith that the church should not hold with slavery, the bearing of arms or the taking of legal oaths. They split off under Reverand Martin Coffman. They held services both at Coffman's "White House" which stands west of Hamburg on the Shenandoah River and also at Mill Creek. The Elder John Koontz held that these things were matters for individual conscience and should not be a part of church doctrine. After Martin Coffman's death ca.1805, many members of his group moved to Fairfield County, Ohio, where they formed Pleasant Run Baptist Church. (Included in this latter group were Daniel Pence, a son of Henry and Mary Pence and a niece Mary Pence, the wife of Francis Peebler (now Bibler.)
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