Re: PA - Neiderhisers in Champion and Pgh
You are correct, my father is Charles, Glenn's youngest brother. He is alive and well and 76 living in Jones Mills. His mother and father, Amanda and Samuel (your great great grandparents) are my grandparents. Amanda passed away in 1974 at 96, so you see, there are long life spans on both sides of your family tree. Samuel's father was Samuel Sr. son of Jacob who was the son of Rudolph.
As far as the spelling of the name. You are correct again. The correct spelling should be Niederhauser, which means those who live in the valley or low lying places. There is a valley in Schwarzenau called "Peace Valley".
I believe this is where they were from. You must understand that in 1833, imigration officials processed so many imigrants that names were written down in haste. German speaking people imigrating to this country were forced to use their name as was written on the immagration documents. When asked their name at immigration I'm sure they would have pronounced it with a heavy German accent. This seems to be how it was written down. Keep in mind as well this happened to names like Schnieder - Snyder - Schneider and many other names. It was quite common and entire books have been published on the subject of original surnames and how they got changed.
Part of the family that migrated to Kansas during the 1840's and 50's changed the spelling to Neiderhisar, why I don't know but probably for some of the same reasons.
I have been in contact with our distant cousins in the Cedar Rapids area of Iowa. I know they are our cousins because their records about Rudolph and his sons are very good. They have old letters that were written back home to Rudolph and Roseanna after they settled there.
As far as your name goes, yes I have put up with all the mispronounciations and nicknames all my life as well. But after doing alot of research I found out that I am part of one of the most interesting and unique families in the United States. I am now very proud of my lineage as many Neiderhiser's are. I have great admiration and respect for Rudolph and Roseanna for crossing the Atlantic (she gave birth on ship to Henry (Sula) Neiderhiser who was named after the ship) and settling here in a place they had never seen.