Author Topic: Wolfgang Haga?  (Read 18790 times)

Offline DaveM

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Re: Wolfgang Haga?
« Reply #25 on: October 24, 2016, 02:02:24 AM »
You guys are thinking in the same line I had when researching - I dug out my tax record summary, where I had ranked some key makers by the tax they paid as follows prior to war years:

1764: 
Hachen 12
Schreit 12
Graff 10
Schroyer 4

1765:
Hachen 7
Schreit 12
Graff 10
Schroyer 4

1766:
Hachen 6
Schreit 8
Graff 8
Schroyer 3 (starting to see why he left)

1767:
Hachen 5
Schreit 4
Graff 6
Schroyer 1

Another observation - Hachen was apparently the first in town likely when it was settled in 1750 or 1751 (was settled a couple of years prior to the 1752 first tax list).  Graff then arrive soon after but as a very young single man.  My perception is that he apprenticed with hachen. 

Another note - Hachen never "properly or legally" obtained his building lot from the Penn family.  Later, in 1796 when Hachen died, and Peter Gonter inherited the property, he had to submit a warrant and patent to properly claim the property.  This issue was not unique to hachen - around the year 1800, MANY owners in Reading were forced to pursue proper patents and warrants of "their" property.  In fact and sadly, there were some in Reading that made claim to others' properties that they were aware were not properly obtained or legal.  Fortunately for Gonter he was able to retain the property.  Hachen's shop was on the east side of South 7th street.

Based on the taxc lists and deed documents I found, Hachen was listed as a gunsmith in pretty much every spot.  There was one document, I believe from the 1750's or 1760's that did list him as a locksmith, but that was a unique finding.  It does tell me that at least for periods he seemed to focus on locks. 

Offline DaveM

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Re: Wolfgang Haga?
« Reply #26 on: October 24, 2016, 02:38:38 AM »
Here is one more tax comparable.  I believe this was the earliest one for Reading where the amount paid was listed.  Earlier ones just listed the names:

1759:
Hachen 6
Schreit 7
Graff 4


Offline spgordon

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Re: Wolfgang Haga?
« Reply #27 on: October 24, 2016, 03:48:31 AM »
Dave, did you find W.H. listed in the tax lists as a gunsmith between 1768 and 1779? (Your examples resemble the years that Kindig listed--and he had a gap between 1768 and 1779.)

I agree with Eric that many men were recruited into the war effort in some aspect of gun production--but quite a few names on the list Dave offered earlier were from pre-Rev War years (and post F&I War years).

Also: none of the comparisons on the tax lists that Dave provided suggest that W.H.'s wealth/value was greater than his peers: in most years Schreit's and Graff's assessments were higher. (I understand that the surviving Reading school rifles don't look like the signed Schreit.)

Remember that the assessments on tax lists don't relate to income. Different taxes assessed different things (land, sometimes some forms of property, buildings, etc.). But not income. So the tax lists allow us to measure relative wealth (but only some forms of wealth).

Scott



« Last Edit: October 24, 2016, 04:06:46 AM by spgordon »
Check out The Lost Village of Christian's Spring:
https://christiansbrunn.web.lehigh.edu/
And The Letters of Mary Penry: A Single Moravian Woman in Early America
http://www.psupress.org/books/titles/978-0-271-08108-3.html

Offline DaveM

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Re: Wolfgang Haga?
« Reply #28 on: October 24, 2016, 05:11:41 AM »
Scott, yes he is listed as gunsmith in 1768, 1779 , 1780, 1781.  He is on all of the 1770's tax lists and those of the 80's but none of anyone's occupations were shown on those. I will check if other documents for those years list his occupation.  My sense is that he continued as a gunsmith throughout though.

Offline spgordon

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Re: Wolfgang Haga?
« Reply #29 on: October 24, 2016, 12:48:40 PM »
My sense is that he continued as a gunsmith throughout though.

Probably he did, yes. But what is that sense based on, if there is no documentary evidence and no signed rifles? If there is no mention on any document of his occupation from, say, 1769-1779, it is a possibility he did something else. I suggested this at first because others had said that he was "wealthy" and, frankly, why would a wealthy man in the eighteenth century continue in an occupation that involved difficult manual labor? But if he wasn't wealthy, if he was just scraping by or even making a solid living but little more, it's very likely he remained in the profession, gunsmith, in which he had been trained.

Scott
Check out The Lost Village of Christian's Spring:
https://christiansbrunn.web.lehigh.edu/
And The Letters of Mary Penry: A Single Moravian Woman in Early America
http://www.psupress.org/books/titles/978-0-271-08108-3.html

Offline smart dog

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Re: Wolfgang Haga?
« Reply #30 on: October 24, 2016, 02:18:21 PM »
Hi Scott and Dave,
Thanks for those tax lists, Dave.  They are interesting.  I wonder if the rise and fall of taxes paid might reflect the buying and selling of land?  I would think the early tradesmen might buy land for speculation when they had earned sufficient income from their trades and then periodically sell off parcels to new residents.  It might be a lucrative strategy given the influx of new immigrants.

dave
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Offline DaveM

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Re: Wolfgang Haga?
« Reply #31 on: October 24, 2016, 03:11:27 PM »
Scott - I have not seen Patrick's data, but I could only find proof that he owned his property on south 7th street (this consisted of two adjoin town lots - and no actual deed was even found for that).  WH also had half ownership of a 10-acre parcel in adjoining Alsace township, of which he shared ownership of with my ancestor Nicholas Madary.  WH in 1778 had a gentlemen's agreement with a Henry Bierly for the rear portion of both of WH's lots - so WH would have received rent for that.   I did see a reference at the PA State historical society about WH pursuing / obtaining a claim for a more distant piece of land in another county, can't recall where - but that was not unusual for the average working man at the time.  So my sense at least is I have found no evidence that I would call WH wealthy.  So I assumed he was a working man.  In fact, in 1764 and again in 1769, he was taken to civil court for debts of 40 pounds and 24 pounds respectively.  Interestingly, the swiss / germans were apparently often taking each other to civil court for debts and other minor offenses.

By the way, WH was a party to a church deed in 1759 - that is where he was listed as a locksmith. 

Dave - you are correct that the buying and improving / selling of land was pursued by some - in fact my ancestor in addition to being a stone mason bought and sold a number of town lots - I believe he would buy one, build the house and stay awhile then sell and start again.  I think these guys were ambitious and did what they could - for example during the war by 1782 my ancestor also owned a grist mill and fulling mill.   I don't know if my ancestor's mills were on the same property that he jointly owned with Hachen - I wish I could find proof of that.  I can say however that WH did not appear to buy and sell land speculatively - I have found no deeds indicating his purchase or sale of other properties in or around Reading, other than those I note above.  If WH did have other land I would be very interested in that info.

I found that Schreit did own other lands - he had his residence (and I believe primary shop) on a prime lot in the market square on Penn Street in Reading.  He also owned land along the Cacoosing Creek up the Schuylkill River from Reading.  He had a mill on that property and made reference to "access by my workmen and laborers" in that deed.  He was also listed as owning property in Douglass Township, east Berks county, in 1773.  I would have to say I perceive that he was rather wealthy compared to the others. 

Graeff again gives me the perception of a working man and did not really find that he bought or sold properties.  He had the same property for over 50 years until he died.

The rears of the properties of WH, Graeff, and my ancestor NM were all rather close together in town, almost adjoining each other with back alleys - their group of properties was almost 3 city blocks from Schreit.     

I'll check my notes to see if WH was called a gunsmith in the early 70's period.

Offline spgordon

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Re: Wolfgang Haga?
« Reply #32 on: October 24, 2016, 03:27:36 PM »
That info in the Schreit deed about "access by my workmen and laborers" is golden: it documents that he was employing others, and it sounds like at least a few others. What year was that? Schreit could have a diversified set of financial concerns or these workmen and laborers could have been employed at the mill in something related to gun production.
Check out The Lost Village of Christian's Spring:
https://christiansbrunn.web.lehigh.edu/
And The Letters of Mary Penry: A Single Moravian Woman in Early America
http://www.psupress.org/books/titles/978-0-271-08108-3.html

Offline DaveM

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Re: Wolfgang Haga?
« Reply #33 on: October 24, 2016, 05:08:55 PM »
Scott - Schreit, who in the deed is mentioned as a gunsmith numerous times in deeds related to the Cumru Township property, bought the property at an orphan's court sale in 1762.  Looking at the deed, the it gives Schreit and his "servants, workmen, and labourers' access across adjoining land to the Creek in order to divert water, and build a mill race and mill dam.  Looking at it again the deed does not appear to use the word "my" in relation to the workers, but it seems to be written in third party way acknowledging his workers.

He sold the property in 1777 - and the interesting thing is in the 1777 deed the mill is referred to as a paper mill.  So either this was an unrelated paper mill business that he created, or he was hiding the fact that it was a gun boring mill because of the war. 

Offline spgordon

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Re: Wolfgang Haga?
« Reply #34 on: October 24, 2016, 05:17:17 PM »
Very interesting! I wonder if "servants" meant "enslaved" person. Jacob Dickert owned an enslaved worker during the Rev. War (and operated a barrel mill). Other Lancaster gunsmiths did as well. Could mean indentured servant, of course. Tax lists sometimes include a category for "slaves" ... but, if not, would be very hard to learn more.
« Last Edit: October 24, 2016, 05:27:02 PM by spgordon »
Check out The Lost Village of Christian's Spring:
https://christiansbrunn.web.lehigh.edu/
And The Letters of Mary Penry: A Single Moravian Woman in Early America
http://www.psupress.org/books/titles/978-0-271-08108-3.html

Offline spgordon

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Re: Wolfgang Haga?
« Reply #35 on: October 25, 2016, 02:32:56 AM »
So here's a weird coincidence: Dave, you mentioned that Schreit had some interest in a paper mill. It turns out the Hagi (Haga?) family--not Wolfgang H. himself, but others with the same/similar last name--seems to have made considerable money through a paper mill or mills. I just learned about this today and should have followed up--and can if it would be of interest.
« Last Edit: October 25, 2016, 02:35:28 AM by spgordon »
Check out The Lost Village of Christian's Spring:
https://christiansbrunn.web.lehigh.edu/
And The Letters of Mary Penry: A Single Moravian Woman in Early America
http://www.psupress.org/books/titles/978-0-271-08108-3.html

Offline DaveM

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Re: Wolfgang Haga?
« Reply #36 on: October 25, 2016, 03:16:59 AM »
Scott, thanks and sure any clues may lead to something!  Schreit sold the property to a guy with the last name Haak / Hawk - also an interesting similar name.  I don't have alot of spare time for research these day so any digging up clues is appreciated.  Would you or anyone know any resources about 18th century mills in berks county?

Offline 120RIR

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Re: Wolfgang Haga?
« Reply #37 on: October 25, 2016, 05:26:21 AM »
Just to further stoke the fires...here are some photos of my first two acquisitions in my new collecting venture.  I'm sure y'all will recognize the "Haga" rifle.  The other is attributed to Jacob George although I understand it has a number of early characteristics pre-dating his time as a gun smith.  Hopefully the link below works.  Let me know if it doesn't.




Offline 120RIR

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Re: Wolfgang Haga?
« Reply #38 on: October 25, 2016, 05:27:45 AM »
That figures ???...let's just try this then:


https://postimg.org/gallery/3g6or0v2s/

Offline Eric Kettenburg

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Re: Wolfgang Haga?
« Reply #39 on: October 26, 2016, 09:57:01 PM »
The George piece has definitely been worked over as time has gone by but it's a cool rifle.  They're both nice!  I like the "curvy" northern Berks stuff a lot more than the Haga-type work (and in light of all that has been involved in this GREAT thread, I think 'Haga-type" is a lot more accurate than simply plastering his name on it, if we can even go that far…).  I don't see anything in the Georg-ish rifle that would preclude Jacob George being the maker but there definitely were others working in the same style.  I would not put it too early.  Those guys up there along the Blue Mtn. hung on to things a bit longer than some others.  Short of a signature, more elaborate carving or a really, really close look at the box engraving, I can't really definitely say whether or not Jacob George made the rifle.  But honestly I don;t think it matters, it's just interesting anyway.  Both of them are.
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Offline DaveM

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Re: Wolfgang Haga?
« Reply #40 on: October 27, 2016, 03:24:59 AM »
So, going out on a limb here - maybe what Patrick said in this thread hits the nail on the head -  I saw online photos of a rifle in a James Julia auction signed "J. Pannabecker" (not sure if exact spelling).  To me, it looks very much like the rifle photo posted and others like it from the "Reading" or "HAGA" school, especially stock form, butt plate profile, trigger guard profile etc.   What if Patrick is correct and these are all pannabecker rifles? Perhaps Abraham Angstadt (b. 1784, in Berks County, moved to Orwigsburg in 1810), who made a similar style, was sent to apprentice with the pannabeckers and adopted more their style than his brothers?   That may help explain his similar style and use of Mohnton area barrels. 

If we were just starting to write these books today, knowing the examples that are signed that have shown up, would they not be attributed to the pannabecker family, much like the characteristic Angstat guns are all similar?

I would be interested in others' thoughts on why they think it would not be pannabecker given signed examples?  I read that John Pannabecker was born in 1733, and lived in Brecknock Township until he died in 1805.  This could be his (unsigned) early on then his son(s) later on?  Would be interested if anyone did any detailed research on this family. 

Offline rich pierce

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Re: Wolfgang Haga?
« Reply #41 on: October 27, 2016, 05:47:42 AM »
Hard to tell if somebody is reading the Pannabecker stamp on a barrel indicating it was made in the Pannabecker mill, and assuming that is who built the rifle, not made the barrel. 
St. Louis, Missouri

Offline Buck

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Re: Wolfgang Haga?
« Reply #42 on: October 28, 2016, 02:47:37 AM »









Here's a couple photos of the Samuel Pannabecker that I have. Though slightly later than the afore pictured rifles they still carried the style well into the 1820's. This rifle is original flint "in the black".

DaveM I don't think your going out on a limb, I've pondered this theory several times. I can see that a few of the guy's here have toiled over hours of research, and I appreciate what the guy's have posted / researched. But maybe the answer is stamped on the bottom of the barrel>

Buck
« Last Edit: October 28, 2016, 03:22:27 AM by Buck »

Offline DaveM

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Re: Wolfgang Haga?
« Reply #43 on: October 28, 2016, 05:16:20 PM »
Buck - thanks for the photos - does yours have a barrel maker name under the barrel also?  Curious - if it does not that may mean pannebecker made both your gun / barrel.

120RIR - thanks for the photos but not sure where your photos went - can you confirm if there is a barrel maker mark / name underneath your barrel?  I assume yours is not marked on the top barrel flat?

Dave

Offline rich pierce

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Re: Wolfgang Haga?
« Reply #44 on: October 28, 2016, 05:52:07 PM »
Buck, what a wonderful rifle!  Thanks for sharing.
St. Louis, Missouri

Offline sqrldog

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Re: Wolfgang Haga?
« Reply #45 on: October 28, 2016, 06:13:16 PM »
2x what Rich said. Thanks for you generousity in sharing photos. Tim

Offline Buck

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Re: Wolfgang Haga?
« Reply #46 on: October 29, 2016, 03:35:59 AM »
DaveM / Rich / Tim,

My pleasure, your welcome . Dave to answer your question I have not removed the barrel. As you can see from the pictures the wrist has a period repair, there isn't a drop of glue between the 2 pieces at the wrist. It's stable, but I handle it with care. Samuel (the maker) had a stake in the barrel mill after the passing of his father, I think it's a safe to assume it's a "complete" Pannabecker Rifle.

Thank you,

Buck

Offline 120RIR

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Re: Wolfgang Haga?
« Reply #47 on: October 30, 2016, 08:27:08 PM »
Per member's request...photos below.  Eric states the Jacob George rifle appears to have been "worked over".  Does that refer to the stock finish perhaps?  Eric...still very much learning here and any insights would be appreciated to say the least!   :)  Concerning  the Blue Mountain region gunsmiths hanging on to older styles longer than others, why would this be?  Relative physical isolation?  Political/economic reasons?  Other general cultural factors perhaps or was it just "because"?






Offline Sequatchie Rifle

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Re: Wolfgang Haga?
« Reply #48 on: November 06, 2016, 05:15:31 PM »
What an interesting thread. Thanks for sharing all the thoughts and info. ""Buck", thanks for your photos of the awesome rifle.

Bill
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Offline dogbest

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Re: Wolfgang Haga?
« Reply #49 on: November 08, 2016, 10:09:39 PM »
There is a Wolfgang Haga rifle listed on gunbroker.com.
Auction number is 597019355.
Starting bid price is $20,000.00!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!