There are a number of Dreisbach Family Association Newsletters which are about Martin Dreisbach. They can be found on this website under "DFA Newsletters".
Martin Dreisbach, who was probably the youngest of the nine known children of Hans Georg and Anna Elisabeth, was born twenty-one years after his eldest sister. The Raumland church records show that Martin was born on May 23, 1717 and was baptized three days later. Martin's mother died when he was only a year and a half old. The family lived in a large half-timbered house called "Leye," next to the Eder River. (The house was still inhabited in 1996 at which time it was being renovated by its owners.) During the nearly fifty years he spent in Pennsylvania, one of Martin's enduring memories was surely the sound of the swiftly flowing Eder as it ran between the house of his childhood and the steep hill which rises like a wall along the opposite bank.
By the time he was twenty-four, Martin was in the town of Krombach in the neighboring principality of Nassau-Siegen, and was engaged to be married. The wedding took place in Krombach in April, 1742. The bride, Anna Eva Hoffman, was twenty, and was the daughter of a schoolmaster [of Nassau -Siegen]. Three sons were born to Martin and Anna Eva before they emigrated to Pennsylvania, Johann Henrich b. 25 June 1743 and Martinus, b. 5 Nov. 1745 and Johann Jacob b. 7 Dec. 1750. The family emigrated to Pennsylvania on the ship "Queen of Denmark" which left Rotterdam on 8 July 1751 and docked in Philadelphia on 4 Oct. 1751.
"My grandparents emigrated to North America, A.D. 1746 (this year is an incorrect recollection made many years later by their grandson). They bought a farm in Lancaster Co., Penn., near the Blackhorse Tavern, in Cocalico Township, where he worked at his trade, blacksmithing, and also built a grist mill and a saw mill. But having lost, by sudden death, his oldest son, he not long after sold his farm and mills and bought a farm in Berks Co., Penn., on the Easton Road, three miles from Reading, and moved thither in A.D. 1763."
This was the nineteenth-century family tradition concerning the first years of Martin and Anna Eva Dreisbach in Pennsylvania, written down by their grandson, Rev. John Dreisbach (1789-1871). Rev. John, who never knew his grandmother, was ten when his grandfather Martin died. Thus this information, which was written down in later life, did not come to Rev. John first-hand. This account is the only one which proposes 1746 as the year of Martin and Anna Eva's arrival in North America. This has been disproved by the finding of the 1750 baptismal certificate for J. Jacob in the church in Krombach, Germany, clearly demonstrates that the family was still in Germany in 1750. Thus we are certain that Martin Dreisbach and his family arrived in Philadelphia in 1751, on the ship "Queen of Denmark."
In fact, there is a tradition in a southern branch of the family which supports this. In T.M. Owen's History of Alabama, vol. 3, 1921, we read on page 508 that the Dreisbachs came from Denmark, went first to Pennsylvania, next to Ohio and then to Alabama! Now, Dreisbach is certainly not a Danish name, and no Dreisbachs were ever known to have come from Denmark. This curious tradition seems to have originated when later generations, having forgotten that "Queen of Denmark" was a ship's name, continued to connect Martin with the country of Denmark.
During the early years it may be more than a coincidence that Martin and the sons of his third cousin Simon were found in the same areas, albeit not simultaneously. Thus, Simon Jr. was married in Philadelphia in early 1752, only a few months after the 1 October 1751 arrival of the "Queen of Denmark." Martin later moved to the same area in Berks County where Simon Jr had recently lived.
The ten years or so that Martin spent in Berks County (ca. 1763-1773) gave him ample time to become fully established there. Moreover, it was during the family's stay near Reading that the two eldest children found mates. Nevertheless, when new opportunities came and military tracts along the frontier were opened for settlement, Martin once again moved on.
In 1773 he took his family north to a recently opened area, purchasing land that had formerly been a military tract. It lay just west of the Susquehanna River in Buffalo Valley. His farm was about four miles upstream along Buffalo Creek, which empties into the Susquehanna at Lewisburg.
At the time of the move, Martin and Anna Eva's two eldest children were already married, and the others ranged between eighteen and nine. In 1775 Martin was recorded as possessing thirty cultivated acres, three horses and six cows. The family tradition, as transmitted by Rev. John Dreisbach, says that Buffalo Valley was: "A frontier settlement, and the settlers had many difficulties to encounter; and about three years from the time of grandparents' settling there, they had to flee from the place in order to escape from the Indian's tomahawk and scalping knife, back to their former neighborhood; but returned to their new residence when the danger was over."
pg. 153: The 31st May (1778) Col. Hunter writes, "We are in a melancholy condition. The back inhabitants have left their homes...The back settlers of Buffalo have come down to the river. One man who was taken prisoner and escaped says the Indians are determined to clear the two branches of the Susquehanna this moon."
pg. 154: July 3d (1778) occurred the massacre at Wyoming,the news of which, received on the 5th, caused the general stampede of the settlers in our Valley, called "The Great Runaway." By the 9th Col. Hunter writes that both branches are nearly evacuated, and Northumberland and Sunbury will be the frontier in less than 24 hours.
pg. 163: General Potter writes from Penn's Valley on the 25th of July 1778 that "the inhabitants of the valley are returned and were cutting their grain." A captain and 24 men were sent into Penn's Valley to protect the reapers. Source: The Annals of Buffalo Valley, John Blair Linn
Thus, the family fled to Berks County for a time. After their return to the farm along Buffalo Creek, Martin was appointed in 1779 to divide Buffalo Valley, a sign that he was a respected citizen. It must have been in these years that Martin was a ranger on the frontier.
The Indian raids had hardly subsided when the Revolutionary War began. According to the D.A.R. Patriot Index, Martin and his two elder sons, Jacob and Henry, were enrolled in the revolutionary forces. From another source we learn that Jacob's time of service was from 1780 to 1782, and that Henry served in 1783. A third son is also said to have been in the War of Independence.
After the war the Lutheran and Reformed settlers of Buffalo Valley joined together to erect a log church for their joint use. Martin Dreisbach, who was an elder of the Reformed congregation, donated 7 acres as the site for the church and the cemetery. In 1788 the log structure, known as "The Dreisbach Church," was completed. It served two congregations as a union church until 1839, when a brick building replaced it. It has been twice rebuilt, in 1869 and 1964. After the Lutheran congregation left in 1963 to establish its own church, the name was changed to Dreisbach United Church of Christ.
In 1789, one year after the log church was built, Anna Eva died. She had known at least four different homes in four different areas, from Siegerland in Europe to Lancaster County, then to Berks County and finally the Buffalo Valley. She lived just long enough to see all her children married (the two youngest having married the previous year,) and died shortly before her 67th birthday.
Anna Eve Hoffman Dreisbach's grave marker states : "Hier liegt Anna Eva Gattin des Martin Dreisbachs Geboren im April 1722 Verheiratet im April 1742 Gestorben den 10 Marz 1789 Ihr Alterwar beinahe 67 Jahr. Ich liege u. schlafe ganz im Frieden DerHerr erhalte mich." "Here lies Anna Eva Wife of Martin Dreisbach Born in April 1722 Married April 1742 Died the 10th March 1789. She was almost 67 years old. I lie here and sleep in Peace because the Herr takes care of me." Source: Dreisbach Church History written in 1988, pg. 38.
Martin outlived his wife by ten years, dying in the last year of the century at 81. Martin and Anna Eva are buried in the Dreisbach Church Cemetery, Lewisburg, Pennsylvania. Recorded in the County of Northumberland, PA: "Be it remembered that Martin Treisbach Sr.- deceased: That on the 24th day of April in the Year of our Lord 1804 Letters of Administration in free and common form of law were granted to Henry Treisbach, of all and singular (?) the Goods Chattels, Rights, Credits which were of Martin Treisbach Snr. - dec'd, Who hath put in sureties - Jacob Dresbach and Da'l Dresbach."
Martin's best-known descendant was the Reverend John Dreisbach, 1789-1871.
GRANTEE (BUYER) LAND TRANSFERS, AS RECORDED IN NORTHUMBERLAND COUNTY, PA:
Martin Treasbough from William Plunket, 2 deeds on 30 Apr 1773; 2 deeds on 19 Nov 1773; 1 deed on 14 Jul 1775; all in Buffalo Valley, Vol D, pg. 41, and 42; Vol B, pg. 491.
Daniel Triesbach (L Atty) from Adam Getz, 08 Oct 1805, Vol. N., pg.500, Buffalo Valley. Martin Driesbach, Shff D, from William Plunket, 14 Jul 1791, Vol. M, pg. 61, Buffalo Twp.
GRANTOR (SELLER) DEED RECORDS IN NORTHUMBERLAND COUNTY, PA:
Martin Tresbaugh Sr., to Peter Fisher, 03 Jun 1793, Vol. L, pg. 201
Martin Tresbach Sr., to John Tresbach, 26 Dec 1793, Vol. N, pg.175 Martin Tresbach Sr., to Jacob Tresbach, 14 Mar 1893(1793?), Vol. Q, pg. 117
Martin Sr. Driesbach to Peter Fisher, 03 Jun 1793, Vol. L., pg. 201, Buffalo Twp. Lydia & Martin Jr.,to Andrew Reedy, 23 Apr 1805, Vol. N, pg. 9 Daniel, Atty, release to Peter Kreechbaum & an, 10 Jan 1806, Vol. N, pg. 500
Site of Martin's Home near Lewisburg, PA
Martin's Headstone in the Dreisbach Church Cemetery, Lewisburg, PA