An American Family History

The Johann Jost Dreisbach Family

Northampton (now Lehigh) County, Pennsylvania


Dreisbach is also spelled Dresbach, Dresback, Driesbach, Driesbaugh, Dreisback, and Treisbach.

A grist mill is a building where a miller grinds gain into flour.

The American Revolutionary War (1775–1783) was between the Kingdom of Great Britain and the 13 colonies which became the newly formed United States.

Johann Jost Dreisbach married in the mid 18th century in Pennsylvania. His wife was named Elizabeth. He remembered nine children in his will. At least three more died as children.

In June, 1747 he applied for the obligatory survey of 25 acres of land in Northampton County. 

Appolonia Dreisbach Neuhard was baptized on February 1, 1749/50 at Egypt Union church in Whitehall Township, Lehigh County Pennsylvania.

Catharine Dreisbach Bauman was born March 5, 1754.

By 1755 the Reformed Lutheran congregation which had met sporadically at their house was functioning as the local church without a regular minister. On the hill above the house they laid out a burial ground.

Jost built a gristmill along Indian Creek. The mill was documented for the first time in a letter written by Benjamin Franklin on December 12, 1755. Franklin ordered Captain Van Etten to station a sergeant and six men at "Treisbach's Mill" due to Indian attacks in the area. In September, October, and November, the indigenous warriors had begun attacking settlers farther west in Pennsylvania.

Elizabeth Dreisbach was born April 23, 1755.

John Jost Dreisbach was born October 26, 1757. He was baptized on February 8, 1758 at Tohickon Reformed Church, Bedminster, Bucks County. Mr. and Mrs. William Deter were sponsors.

Simon Dreisbach was born July 10, 1760. He was baptized on September 22, 1760 and recorded at Tohickhon Reformed church in Bedminster, Bucks County. Mr. and Mrs. Simon Dreisbach were the sponsors.

John Adam Dreisbach was born October 25, 1762.

Magdalen Dreisbach was born about 1763.

The family lost two children in 1764. Simon died on February 17, 1764 when he was three and Elizabeth died on February 20, 1764 when she was eight. They were buried in Howersville and the headstones are at Zion Stone Church.

Susanna Dreisbach Shafer was born April 14, 1767.

Mary Gertrude Dreisbach was born July 4, 1768. She died on August 18, 1769.

John (Johannes) Dreisbach was born June 26, 1769.

Philip Dreisbach was born February 3, 1773.

Michael Dreisbach was born April 1, 1779.

Jost died October 17, 1794. His sons John and Adam were administrators of his estate.
Choosing a Godparent sponsor was not just a formality in 17th century Germany. Each child had one Godparent of the same gender. It established ties between families that were near kinship. The Godparent was expected to provide spiritual support and material support in times of need.


Lehigh County, Pennsylvania was formed in 1812 from Northampton.
Northampton County, Pennsylvania is on the eastern border of the state in the Lehigh Valley. It was formed in 1752 from parts of Bucks County. Easton is the county seat.
Zion Stone Church is a Lutheran church near Kreidersville, Pennsylvania. It was dedicated on June 18, 1772.
Lehigh County, Pennsylvania was first settled about 1730 and officially constituted in 1812 with the division of Northampton County.

from History of Lehigh County, Pennsylvania

Jost Dreisbach was born Nov. 21, 1721, and died October 17, 1794. He was a member of the County Committee of Observation in 1774, captain of a company from Lehigh township in 1775, and colonel of the Third Battalion of the county in 1776.

He married Elizabeth Rachenberger (sic) and had children:
Catharine, born March 5, 1754, m. Henry Bauman;
Elizabeth, born April 23, 1775;
John J., born October 20, 1757;
Simon, born July 10, 1760;
Adam, born Oct. 25, 1762;
Jost, born April 11, 1764, died March 18, 1854, m. Margaret Solt, b. 1764, d. 1842, and had sons:
Daniel, and
Peter; [and]
and Magdalen.


Bucks County, Pennsylvania is one of three original Pennsylvania Counties and was formed in 1682. Originally it was a large territory that included all of what would later be Berks, Northampton, and Lehigh.
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©Roberta Tuller 2023
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