The background of the Artist's Conception of the Jacob Hochstetler Homestead

by Daniel E. Hochstetler

 

No photographs or specific descriptions exist of the original home or farm buildings of our ancestors in Berks Co. Pa. The family home was burned down by Indians in 1757, and then was rebuilt on the original foundation, according to the research of William F. Hochstetler in Descendants of Jacob Hochstetler, 1912. About 1830 the present house was built. All other farm buildings are gone and have been replaced.

Around 1980, Rev. Jonathan J. "J.J." Hostetler visited the present home site and carefully noted the layout of the land. In light of the limited information that he had, he made some conclusions about the family and their homestead. After drawing a rough sketch and outline, he commissioned Ivan Moon, an artist at Mennonite Publishing House, Scottdale, Pa., to draw the pictures. Hostetler paid Moon to first search the archives in Harrisburg and Philadelphia to determine the possible descriptions and scenes of cabins built in colonial Pennsylvania. From these clues and perspectives Moon then, in 1982, drew the picture we now have as an artist's conception.

While the drawing is not copyrighted, the document filed with a copy of the print in the Mennonite Historical Library at Goshen (IN) College indicates that "Any copy or use is subject to permission of the owner".

On Jan. 14, 1998, I talked with Rev. Hostetler, age 92, in his retirement home in Goshen, Indiana, explained the proposed use of the drawing on the family Home Page, and he agreed to this use, with proper acknowledgement..

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