- They emigrated from Europe on the Charming Nancy, traveling from Rotterdam to Cowes to Philadelphia and arriving there Nov. 9, 1738. In 1739 they obtained a warrant for 58 acres in Upper Bern, Berks County (now about two miles northwest of Shartlesville near Reading). At that time it was still an unsettled part of the frontier.
This Jacob is often confused with another who arrived two years earlier. When The Descendants of Jacob Hochstetler, the immigrant of 1736 was published by descendant Harvey Hochstetler in 1912, he believed that the Amish Mennonite Jacob had arrived at Philadelphia on the Harle Sept. 1, 1736. A number of false assumptions sprang from this. Genealogists looked at the Harle passenger list, and concluded that he was married to a Miss Lorenz. There was also confusion over land warrants and ages. The Jacob Hochstedtler/Hochstadtler/Hofstedler who arrived on the Harle was not Amish Mennonite. He was born July 25, 1701, and died in Lancaster County circa 1750. He married Maria Eva Trautmann. They belonged to the Muddy Creek Church, a Lutheran and Reformed congregation at Cocalico Township
The Charming Nancy, the Harle myth, the trip
The 1912 book entitled "Descendants of Jacob Hochstetler" indicates that our Jacob Hochstetler came to Philadelphia on a ship named the "Harle" in 1736, and that conclusion was based on the best information that the author and historian, Harvey Hostetler, had access to at that time. For over 50 years no one has ever questioned this presumption. Then, in the 1970s Virgil Miller, who has conducted extensive Swiss and colonial family historical studies, raised some questions about this arrival. He considered the date and the ship questionable but since family historian Paul V. Hostetler (grandson of the 1912 historian and author) defended his grandfather's work, the matter was laid to rest. Ironically, it was this same Paul V. Hostetler who in the later 1970s discovered crucial data in Pennsylvania which proves there were TWO Jacob Hochstetlers who immigrated about the same time. This brought Virgil Miller's theory back to the drawing board and the ensuing investigation determined that he had been correct all along. Evidence shows that the earlier one was not Amish, and the facts about his existence are supported by verifiable documents and records. He and his wife Eva had a completely different set of children than our Joseph, that are listed in black and white in the Moravian Archives in Bethlehem, PA. These facts, when they came to light, immediately disqualified him as our ancestor. So we had to come up with a better candidate. In the Ship lists another Jacob was found who better fit the facts, so we had to revise our records and dates to reflect that our ancestor was Amish, and was the one who came over on the "Charming Nancy" which docked in Philadelphia on Nov. 9, 1738. The 1738 ship list says our ancestor was 26 years old, thus was born in 1712 (The "Harle" Jacob was 32 years old in 1736, therefore born in 1704).