The Founding Family (of Coaldale & Tamaqua, i.e., The Mosers)

Source: Iron Steps—The Illustrated History of Tamaqua Pennsylvania

When Burkhardt Moser came to the territory of Tamaqua, he was accompanied by his 9-year-old son Jacob, who was born August 2, 1790. Jacob died on March 17, 1883, and his grave is visible in St. John’s Lutheran Cemetary on Patterson Street. We also know that Moser had a 3-year-old daughter, Barbara, at the time. Barbara was born in Lynn, Northampton County, on July 22, 1796. At age 24, she wed a gentleman named John Whetstone in a ceremony conducted in Moser’s original log cabin on Christmas Day in 1820. The newlyweds resided in the cabin for about one year until they built their own cabin.

Burkhardt Moser and his wife, the former Catherine Wertman (sp?), gave birth to another son, John, on May 24, 1805, in Tamaqua. In 1827, John and his wife moved four miles east of the Tamaqua settlement and built a log cabin that sparked the beginnings of Coaldale. The cabin was erected on the north side of a scenic hill that in later years became a popular picnic area called Manila Grove Park. Near this cabin, John Moser farmed crops for his own use and made his living hauling coal and timber to Tamaqua. The area is now the site of Miners Memorial Medical Center, formerly Coaldale State General Hospital, dating back to 1909.

The first adult death among the white settlers was that of Catherine Moser, who passed away on February 15, 1822. Two months later, Moser’s friend and fellow pioneer John Kershner also died. Eventually, Burkhardt Moser married the widow Kershner. Historical accounts claim that Burkhardt Moser was the father of eleven children.