Sunday, November 13, 2011

Valentine Felty Vanhooser Sr.

Valentine Felty Van Hooser is the fourth generation of Van Husses in America. Valentine's father was Johannes Van Hoesen, his father was also named Johanes Van Hoesen, and his father was Jan Fransse Van Husum, the first Van Huss in America.

Shakespeare would ask, "What is in a name?" Van Husum refers to the city of Husum, which is located on the coast of Jutland, an area historically referred to as North Friesland, and today northern Germany. Jan Fransse Van Husum's wife Volckje Juriens accompanied Jan to America in 1639. She was from the neighboring island of Noortstandt, which was devastated by a flood in 1634, which killed both her parents.

'The town lay close to the North Sea, to one side of it lay the broad meadows of the marshland and to the other in my youth the large partly reclaimed heathland . . . [T]he town had a somewhat antiquated character, many houses were still with stepped gables . . .'

Theodore Storm letter to young Austrian writer Ada Christen in Vienna, 2 March 1873.

For background on the area of North Friesland, see the site of Theodore Storm, Husum's most famous author.

Valentine Felty Vanhooser

The great grandson of Jan Fransse Van Husum,Valentine Felty Van Hooser, seems to have been a peripatetic fellow. He began life in Claverack, New York in 1725, and left it in 1781 at Montgomery, Washington County, Virginia. In the mean time, in 1746, he married Maria Barbara "Barbary" Zerwe in Tulpenhocken, Lancaster, Pennsylvania. The couple lived for four or five years in Pennsylvania, having three children while there, and then, shortly after 1751, moved to Rowan County, North Carolina. They followed in the footsteps of Daniel Boone's family which also made the move from Pennsylvania to North Carolina, before Daniel started his wanderings in Tennessee and Kentucky.

Eventually, Valentine Felty Van Hooser would end up in Wythe County, Virginia. It is important to remember that in the early days of settlement, counties were newly created and subsequently divided or renamed. Rowan County, North Carolina became, in part, Anson County. Washington County, Virginia, became Wythe County.

Valentine Felty and his wife Maria Barbara Zerwe would produce thirteen children during their long marriage. The last of whom Valentine Felty Vanhooser, Jr., born 1768 in Rowan County, North Carolina, would be the Van Huss from whom Robert Van Huss is descended.

New York

Of New York, all I now know is that Valentine Felty Vanhooser Sr. was born on 26 Jan 1725 in Claverack, New York.  This was the part of the country where his great grandfather Jan Fransse Van Husum had settled and bought land. The land was originally part of the Dutch New Netherlands. It was located on the Hudson River where the modern day city of Albany now exists.

Nothing is known of Valentine's early life. All that we can know is that by the age of 21 he had left for William Penn's colony of Pennsylvania. Interestingly, Maria Barbara Zerwe was buried in Christ Church in Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania.


Maria Barbara Zerwe was born in Livingston, New York. Livingston County is in the far western part of the state, south of modern Rochester. Thus, it is likely that she met and married young Valentine in Tulpenhocken. They were married  22 December 1746, in Christ Church, Elizabethtown, Tulpehocken, Lancaster, Pennsylvania.

See the ebook, Blue book of Schuylkill County, 1746, December 22, Valentine Von Huss to Maria Barbara Zerwe, Tul-pehocken. It is in section 334, a little less than half way down the page. 

Interestingly, it is in the same church that Maria Barbara Zerwe was buried. Add source.

Tulpehocken is the eighteenth century name used to describe a part of Lancaster County first settled by Scotch-Irish and Pennsylvania Dutch. Daniel Boone's ancestors settled this area before moving south.

Tulpenhocken is also the name of a creek in Berks County. The Tulpehocken Creek is the largest stream in Berks County. Arising from springs west of Myerstown in Lebanon County.  It enters Berks county near Stouchsburg and flows east and south 29 miles until it reaches the Schuylkill River at Reading.The creek may or may not be a good reference to where Valentine Felty Vanhooser lived. The reason is that Maria was buried in Christ Church in Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania, further to the west.

To be certain one would have to look at the land record for Lancaster County recording the deed.

Records from 1749 indicate that some 12,000 emigrants from Northern Europe arrived in Philadelphia and many headed to the Tulpenhocken area. Historical Summary of the Tulpenhocken Area.

Precious little is known about Valentine and Maria in Tupenhocken other than their marriage in 1746 and the fact that the couple took out a land grant of 50 acres in Berks County, which was formed from the larger Lancaster County. The wedding most likely took place at Elizabethtown in the Christ Lutheran Church, original log church 1743, present building 1786. It is in the cemetery at Christ Lutheran that Maria Barbara Zerwe Vanhooser is buried along with her parents.

Find a Grave

But there is also evidence that they had migrated to Rowan County by 1747.

North Carolina

By 1747, they were in Rowan County, North Carolina along the Yadkin River.

Only speculation exists as to why Valentine and Maria left Pennsylvania for North Carolina. One account suggests that they followed the advice of a Boone family member who also migrated to the area. Daniel Boone, born in Pennsylvania to Quaker parents, also migrated to the Yadkin Valley in western North Carolina. But as we will see, the Vanhoosers arrived in the Yadkin Valley three years before the Boone family.

The route taken by both families would follow modern day Interstate 81, along the contours of the Shenandoah Mountains of western Virginia and North Carolina. I am going to use the Cox-Stewart Family History of Valentine Felty Vanhooser to retrace their route.

(I hesitate because of the seeming impossibility of all the names, dates, and places. Draw your own conclusions and check other sources.)

John, the first child of Valentine and Barbara, was born in 1747 in Anson County, North Carolina. Then, according to the genealogy, twins Maria and Jacob were born in 1751 in Tulphocken, Pennsylvania. Three years later, in 1754, Miss Vanhooser was born, again in Anson County. In 1756,  in Augusta County, Virginia, Abraham was born.

At this point in the birth narrative, I am going to take a break, because it is important to understand the historical events. In 1753, the western inhabitants of Anson County North Carolina petitioned for a new county to be called Rowan County. This area containing Yadkin Valley extended westerly towards Tennessee and northerly to Virginia. The purpose of the new county was to establish a county seat nearer the inhabitants than the existing county seat.

Historically, it is also significant to know that Squire Boone and family, to include his more well-known son, Daniel, arrived in the Yadkin Valley in 1750.The records of births to Valentine and Barbara Vanhooser put their arrival in Rowan County three years earlier.

The French and Indian War lasted between 1754 and 1763. And in 1756, Fort Dobbs was built 26 miles to the west of the county seat Salisbury for the protection of the inhabitants from the Shawnees and Cherokees who raided from the north and west.

Abraham Vanhooser is listed as born in 1756, in Augusta County, Virginia, which coincides with the Indian troubles in and around Fort Dobbs. By 1758, Valentine and Barbara are back in Rowan County where two more children Miss and Valentine (not to be confused with another later Valentine, also born to the same parents) are born. Five more children are born, all in Rowan County, and the last Valentine Jr., from whom Bob is descended, in 1768.

Sometime around 1771, Valentine and his family leave North Carolina for Virginia for good.


1. Rowan County History.

2. Fort Dobbs.


In 1774, Valentine and his large family moved to Fincastle (now Montgomery) County Virginia; then moved to the North Fork of the Clinch River in 1775; but, after two years of fighting the Cherokee Indians, moved back to a more civilized area of Virginia.

Today, this is a trip up Highway 21, from Hickory, North Carolina to Wytheville, near Blacksburg, Virgina. A westerly route through the Piedmont takes you up Highway 221. Mapquest.

Valentine was a wealthy man. He owned lots of land and had quite a few Negro slaves. However, when the Revolutionery War broke out, Valentine was loyal to the British and became a known Tory. He took up arms against the colonists and fought for Genral Cornwallis, dying in the year 1781 at one of the last two battle Cornwallis fought in--the Guilford Co., North Carolina County court house, or at Yorktown, Virginia, where Cornwallis surrendered.

Read more of the online biography of Valentine.

Valentine and Barbara had a large family. One family record puts the number at 18. Note that the name Valentine is given to at least three sons. It is the last, Valentine Vanhooser, born in 1769 - died in Johnson, Tennessee in 1857, who is the ancestor of Bob Van Huss of Kansas. This later Valentine crossed the mountains into eastern Tennessee, near Fort Watauga.

Children with Barbara b. ABT 1726
Anson, North Carolina
Agst, Virginia

Abraham Van Hooserb. 1756
d. 30 Aug 1834
Madison, Illinois

Maria Catharine Van Hooserb. 18 Apr 1747
Tulpehocken, Berks, Pennsylvania

John Van Hooserb. 1747
Anson, North Carolina
d. 1 Sep 1850
New Market, Jefferson, Tennessee

Jacob Van Hooserb. 1747
Anson, North Carolina
d. 25 Aug 1845
Wayne, Kentucky

Maria Barbara Van Hooserb. 22 May 1749
Tulpehocken, Berks, Pennsylvania

Isaac Van Hooserb. 1750
Anson, North Carolina
d. 5 Apr 1831

Elizabeth Van Hooserb. ABT 1752
Anson, North Carolina

Van Hooserb. ABT 1754
Anson, North Carolina

Miss Van Hooserb. ABT 1754
Rowan, North Carolina

Van Hooserb. ABT 1758
Rowan, North Carolina

Valentine Van Hooserb. ABT 1758
Rowan, North Carolina
d. 1836

Curate Van Hooserb. ABT 1760
Rowan, North Carolina

Isaac Van Hooserb. BET 1762 AND 1764
Rowan, North Carolina
d. 5 Apr 1831
Warren, Tennessee

Elizabeth Van Hooserb. 1766
Rowan, North Carolina
Jefferson, Tennessee

Valentine Van Hussb. 1768
Rowan, North Carolina
d. 1854

*Valentine Van Hooserb. 14 Feb 1768
Rowan, North Carolina
d. 1 Mar 1857
Johnson, Tennessee

Van Hooserb. ABT 1770d.

Van Hooserb. ABT 1772d.

1.  Van Hooser Family of the United States, by Joyce Lindstrom, pages 237-238.
2.  Records of Rowan County.
3. A Colonial History of Rowan County.
4. Children of Valentine and Maria.
5. Birthplace of Valentine.
6. Biography of Valentine Felty Vanhooser
7. Parents of Valentine Felty Vanhooser


  1. This is my 5-6 great grandfather. Anymore out there. Too bad he was a turncoat but it's who we are lol. Contact me at

  2. He is my 5 times great grandfather, through my Mom who is a Van Hooser. Very nice writeup.