Our Patriot Ancestors
     . . . Biographical Sketches

Joseph Roberts

  Joseph Roberts was born on 18 March 1743. His father was Richard Roberts, but his mother's name is not known. Richard Roberts was born in 1720 in Wales and immigrated to North America prior to the birth of Joseph. Although Richard and his wife settled initially in Virginia, it is believed that Joseph was born in Pennsylvania.

  Joseph Roberts married Agnes Seabrook, the daughter of William I. Seabrook and Jemima Gist. Agnes was born on 18 March 1742 at Baltimore, Maryland.

  In 1779, the name of Joseph Roberts was recorded on the tax assessment return for Hopewell Township as a farmer owning three horses and two horned cattle. His name, though, was crossed out on the return. A second copy of the tax assessment included the name Joseph Robarts, but in that return he is noted as 'absant vacant'. Joseph Roberts' name was also recorded on the Frankstown Township tax assessment return for 1779. The boundary between Frankstown and Hopewell Townships was hard to ascertain and it was possibly believed at first that the Roberts homestead was located within Hopewell. Then, when it was discovered that the property was in the questionable region, Joseph Roberts' name was transferred to the Frankstown Township return.

  A pension application filed by Joseph's widow, Agnes, stated that there were only four children in the Joseph and Agnes Roberts family: Ann, Jemima, Mary and Levi. According to current genealogists, Joseph and Agnes Roberts gave birth to five children: Mary, Richard, Jemima, Nancy; and Levi.

  After Joseph's death in the Woodcock Valley, Agnes married a man by the surname of Berry.

  Mary Roberts, daughter of Joseph, married John Shaffer.

  Nothing is known about Richard Roberts. Claims were made that he joined the army and served during the Revolutionary War, but he might not have been old enough to.

  Jemima Roberts (daughter of Joseph) married Patrick Dimond. Patrick was born in the year 1770 at Baltimore, Maryland. The couple gave birth to five children: Joseph, Anna Elizabeth, Agnes, Daniel, and Levi.

  Nancy Roberts the youngest daughter of Joseph, married Jacob Sheets.

  Levi Roberts the youngest son of Joseph, married Elizabeth Gochnour in November 1799. The couple gave birth to: William, Nancy, Susannah, Sarah, Jacob, and John.

  In 1803, Levi and his family, his mother and new step-father and his sisters Mary and Jemima and their families moved west across the Allegheny Mountain. They took up settlement in the northern region of Somerset County that would, by the next year, become Cambria County. Their settlements were about five miles north of the town of Johnstown.

  A 4th Great-granddaughter of Joseph Roberts, Julie Ruegsegger had hoped to join us today at this Remembrance Ceremony, but at the last minute had to cancel her trip from Connecticut.