John Siegfried, Colonel
Northampton County Militia - An American Adventure
Source: Leon Borst of Chester County, Pennsylvania has written an interesting perspective on John Siegfried, the Sheriff of Northampton County who was responsible for confiscating the household possessions of the Bachman and Yoder families. Reproduced here with permission.

John Siegfried was born 27 October 1745 in Maxatawny Township, Philadelphia County (Berks County since 1752) the son of Joseph Siegfried and Anna Maria Romig. John Siegfried married his cousin Mary Levan on 25 August 1769.

John purchased land along the east side of the Lehigh River in Allen Township, Northampton County in 1770 where he eventually owned a tavern or inn and conducted a ferry service across the Lehigh River. The area where he lived became known as "Siegfried's Ferry" (now part of the Borough of Northampton).

Here's the irony of this story. John Siegfried's grandparents, Johannes and Elizabeth Siegfried, were Mennonites. John's father, Joseph Siegfried, often housed traveling Moravians in his home and was in fact baptized into the Moravian faith a few days before he died. John Siegfried purchased his land from David Chambers on 10 March 1770 and on the same day, David Chambers conveyed a one acre plot (this was on the road to the ferry on what is now 21st St. in Northampton) to Joseph Showalter, Henry Funk, Peter Fried and Jacob Baer for "the sole use of the Menosist Congregation of Allen and Whitehall Townships." This acre was within John Siegfried's boundaries, and contained a church and cemetery from about 1761.

John Siegfried became a Colonel in the Northampton County Militia during the Revolutionary War. He fought several battles along side of George Washington and there are several letters on record from George Washington to Col. John Siegfried. Col. John Siegfried died in 1793 and was buried in the Mennonite Cemetery on his property. He is a local hero and a monument to him was placed at the cemetery in 1913.

Your write-up on the exploits of "Sheriff" John Siegfried was very interesting. I had never seen that story. I knew Col. John was a Sheriff for one year, but I guess historians don't want to tarnish his name by writing of his overzealous actions against Mennonites and Moravians.

Leon F. Borst Chester County, Pa.