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CLEMENS, Peter H., was born near McKee's Half Falls, Snyder county. Pa., October 3, 1851. He is a son of Peter and Harrietta (Barraughs) Clemens. The father, Peter Clemens, was born in Snyder county, May 22, 1819. He was a blacksmith, and afterwards a farmer. He married, in March, 1844, Miss Harrieta Burraughs, who was born in New Berlin, Union county, daughter of Benjamin Burraughs, a native of Ireland. Their children are: Benjamin F.; Mary D., wife of Peter Ziegler, deceased; Lydia A., wife of James Bell; Peter H.; Wesley E.; John D.; U. S. G.; George I., died April 3, 1863, at Norfork, Va., aged seventeen; Joseph B., deceased, and Susanna, wife of August McCarty. Mr. Clemens is a Democrat. He was supervisor of Snyder county for one term. The family are members of the United Brethren church. The parents are living retired in Mifflin county. The father of Mrs. Clemens was born in 1782, and died at Lancaster, aged sixty-eight years. The mother of Mr. Clemens was born in 1798, and died aged seventy-five.

Peter H. Clemens received a limited education in the schools of Liverpool, Perry county, Pa. At the age of eleven he began to work for himself, and was employed for eight months on a farm. Subsequently he went on the canal, and for three years was a driver between Liverpool and Harrisburg. He was next employed for one year in the mines at Lykens, afterwards for two years in the mines at another place. He then served an apprenticeship of one year at carpentry with Henry Hoover, Berrysburg, Dauphin county. The next year he worked at his trade with John M. Funstach, Sunbury, Pa., after which he engaged in business for himself for one year at Sunbury and then for three years at Shenandoah, Schuylkill county. Thence he went to Williamsport, and met an Englishman, with whom he went to Pittsburg, in search of employment. Not succeeding at Pittsburg, they went to Cleveland, Ohio, where they were offered a job, which they could not accept, because they had lost their tools. They worked on the streets in Cleveland for a half a day, and then went into the country, where they became acquainted with a Pennsylvanian and secured a two weeks' job in the stone quarry. After receiving their wages and settling their bills they had only one dollar left, and voted the job unprofitable. They then contracted with a farmer to cut wood for him for six months. Receiving a little money in advance, they procured some lumber from Cleveland and built a shanty in the woods for their winter quarters. This engagement completed, Mr. Clemens found his first job at his trade in Cleveland, and after working there for three months returned to Shenandoah, Pa., where he carried on carpentry for a year. For two weeks he worked at cutting grain and hay in Columbia county. His partner getting into some trouble they went from that place to Newton Hamilton, Mifflin county, where they were for two years engaged in carpenter work.

Peter H. Clemens was married, November 24, 1874, to Rebecca, daughter of Sanders and Hannah J. (Hewit) Daniels. They had six children: Bessie L., Rosa, Gertrude, Annette H., Charles W., Peter H. and Lawrence B.

After his marriage Mr. Clemens went to Houtzdale, Clearfield county, where he engaged in contracting for one year. He purchased a lot and built a house, but sold his property the next year. His wife went to her parents and he returned to his old home, where he lived inactive for a year. The next winter he was employed to make ties for the railroad at Newton Hamilton. In the following spring he went to Havana, N. Y., where he worked at his trade for two years. In the next year he went to Trenton Junction, where his brother gave him a lot on which he built a house for himself and carried on business for a year. He was next employed for a year in the car shops at Harrisburg, and then for four years engaged in house building on his own account. He then removed his family to Philadelphia where he was in business for himself for three years. Having secured a building contract at St. Louis, Mo., he was there for a year, then returned to Philadelphia, and worked at his trade there for two years longer. He then went to Harrisburg, bought the property at the corner of Six-and-a-half and Park streets, and began a cigar and tobacco business which he has conducted up to the present time in addition to working as a carpenter. Mr. Clemens has for twelve years been a member of Lamberton Lodge No. 708, I. O. O. F. His politics are Democratic. He is a member of the Methodist Episcopal church.

Mrs. Peter H. Clemens was born February 2, 1853. Her parents, Sanders and Hannah J. Daniels, were both natives of Mifflin county where they were engaged in farming. The children of Mr. and Mrs. Daniels are: Annette, Charles, Annie, wife of Frederick Kreitzer, Sadie, Mollie, and Rebecca, Mrs. Clemens, all living. Their deceased children are: Ida, wife of John C. Norton; Ketura, Andrew J., Mamie, and two that died in infancy. Mr. and Mrs. Daniels now reside in Altoona, Pa., where Mr. Daniels is employed in the railroad shops, and they conduct a boarding house. Mr. Daniels is a Democrat. The family are members of the Methodist Episcopal church.

Mrs. Clemens had previously been married to Matthew Gaff, who was killed on the railroad, October 30, 1873. To this marriage there was one child born, Melinda B., wife of Thomas Boehm, residing in Philadelphia.

Historical Review of Dauphin County

Transcribed by Gwen Bixler Drivon at for The Dauphin County, Pennsylvania Genealogy Transcription Project -

Date of Transcription: 24 Feb. 2001

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