== The Peter Webner Family A Brief History ==
Peter was a shoemaker. He married Margreta Walz, daughter of Boaz, about 1811. They set up housekeeping in Lebanon County, Pa., in East Hanover where Margreta was raised. The family raised 11 children -- eight daughters and three sons -- and early engaged them in the Jonestown Evangelical Lutheran Church near their new home in the Jonestown mill village. Two daughters and two sons did not survive 1830.
Following Margreta’s death, 60 plus year-old Peter had quite a challenge raising a number of children while working a labor-intensive trade and probably tenant-farming a small plot: at least four of the children would have been under 11! Moving the family to Carlisle, Pa., likely helped Peter find a larger market for his trade, provide help in raising his young children and provide them with greater educational opportunities.
Peter died in 1846, and he is buried in Carlisle. David Webner
David, Peter's youngest son and the only one to survive, was christened May 28, 1831 at the Zion Evangelical Lutheran Church in Jonestown, Lebanon County, Pa. After their parents died, the family split up, with David bound out for apprenticeship into the home of William Reed in Churchtown (now Allen), Monroe Twp., Cumberland County, Pa. His sisters Catherine and Mary also lived together nearby at the time.
David apprenticed to Mr. Reed as a tailor, and united with the Church of God on November 19, 1849. He moved to Mechanicsburg, then travelled to Smithville, Wayne County, Ohio, in 1852 where he worked at tailoring for William Peters and E. H. Gilbert.
David married Charity Walton, of the Byberry Waltons, in 1854, and moved to Knox County where he opened a ready-made clothing store, probably one of the first in the area as ready-made clothes were in their infancy. He later returned to Smithville and opened a clothing store there. When the Pittsburgh Fort Wayne & Chicago Railroad came through about a mile south of Smithville (now known as Weilersville Station), David established a taxi and hack line (short-distance, horse-drawn cargo hauling) from the station to the Smithville. Thus began the family's long history with railroading.
David died in 1873 of "neuralgia of the heart" after a long illness. This event forced Charity to take over the hack line and to sustain a family of five children aged 11 months to 17 years as a single parent. When the eldest son, Gilbert, was married in 1881, the hack line was given to him. The other sons also learned telegraphy and were engaged in railroading for at least parts of their careers.
Charity passed away in 1913, revered throughout the community for the manner in which she raised and educated her children with strong Christian principles for which Webner's are still known.