The Long-Stahl Farm: 910 Jake Landis Road, Lititz
(Including the Harvest Lane Farm Market)
Above: The Long-Stahl Farmhouse as seen on Google Earth Street View.
(The three bays on the right are the original house. The left side was added by 1798 as a one-story, stone kitchen wing. A second floor was added to the left side in the mid 1800s in frame construction, and a stone veneer was added later. )
This fertile farm is part of the 325-acre patent that Hans (Johannes / John) Long received in 1738 from William Penn's heirs. This tract also included the adjoining Isaac Long Farm. In 1761 Hans received another patent from the Penns for 148 acres adjoining his farm to the north.
Hans married Anna (Snavely) Long. Hans and Anna were both Mennonite immigrants from Germany. Their family records are penned in a 1748 Martyrs' Mirror, here.
Hans and Anna apparently built the stone farmhouse which survives on this Long-Stahl Farm today, as evidenced by a 1756 date painted on the house's front door lintel. The house was built for their son John Long (1730-1817) and wife Mary (Hershey) Long. So that's two generations of Hans Longs, to complicate the genealogy.
The 1798 Direct Tax lists Joseph Long as the owner of this farm at that date. The surviving farmhouse was built as a two-and-a-half-story stone dwelling. It had a three-room Germanic floor plan. There was a central cooking fireplace which no longer survives, and was probably removed in the 1790s when the kitchen wing was added.
Left Pin: The Long-Stahl Farm. Right Pin: Isaac Long Farm:
View this farm in a larger Google map.
The ca. 1756 Long-Stahl Farmhouse: Distinctive Germanic Architecture:
The ca. 1756 farmhouse has some unusual construction details that reflect the dwelling's early history. These details include:
- The farmhouse gable facing the barn had an unusual doorway that opened out from the attic level. This doorway has been closed, but it retains interior timber framing for supporting a hoist to lift bags of grain to the attic for storage. Grain was usually stored in farmhouse attics, on these early Pennsylvania German farms, rather than in barns.
- The ceiling above the farmhouse's second floor preserves its original construction. This unusual ceiling is made of wood paling slats covered with a layer of clay. This wood-and-clay paling also serves as the attic floor, and was never covered with floor boards.
- There is evidence of a half-timbered wall between the stove room (living room) and the adjoining downstairs parent's bedroom. The wall apparently was of wattle and daub construction, as suggested by the notching on the underside of the summer beam. This wall was later replaced with brick and moved forward.
- The farmhouse also boasts a vaulted stone arch cellar for food storage.
The 1798 Direct Tax describes this farm:
- One dwelling house - 34 x 30, stone, two stories, three windows and 15 lights on the first floor, 13 windows and 12 lights on the second floor, one acre.
- One kitchen - 20 x 20,
- One old barn - 60 x 30, log,
- Two stables and waggonshaid [sic] - 50 x 25, stone and log,
- 100 acres. Valuation: House and kitchen: $840. Barn, stables and waggonshaid, and land: $3,600.
The 1803 Long-Stahl Barn
Photographed in 1941 for the Historic American Buildings Survey:
Above: The Long-Stahl barn in the Historic American Buildings Survey.
Five years after the 1798 Direct Tax, the Long family replaced the log barn with a stone-gabled Swisser barn which still survives. The barn's datestone is dated 1803. The barn was built by Joseph Long (1768-1858), a grandson of the immigrants Hans and Anna Long. It appears that Joseph Long's first wife was Elizabeth Summy (ca. 1774- ca. 1811). Her initial “E” for Elizabeth is inscribed in the barn's datestone, along with her husband Joseph's initials.
The photographs, above, of the Long-Stahl Barn are part was a works program created by the federal government during the Great Depression to help lift American workers out of unemployment. As part of this project, the National Park Service established the Historic American Buildings Survey (HABS) in 1933, to provide work for unemployed architects, draftsmen and photographers.
Some of Lancaster County's most historic buildings were photographed and documented during this time, including this barn. The photographer was architect Charles H. Dornbusch, who later published the book Pennsylvania German Barns (1956).
Sulfur-inlaid chest likely made for Barbara Long (1762-1850),
Who was born and raised here in the Long-Stahl farmhouse:
Images: Philadelphia Museum of Art, chest gift of Mr. and Mrs. Robert L. Raley, 1978-101-1; photo, Garvin Ashworth. Published in: "Sulfur Inlay Pennsylvania German Furniture: New Discoveries", by Lisa Minardi, in American Furniture (2015), edited by Luke Beckerdite, the Chipstone Foundation, p. 132.
This chest was likely made for Barbara Long (1762-1850), the daughter of Mennonite farmers John Long (1730 -1817) and wife Mary Hershey (Mary's dates unknown). Barbara married Charles Rudy (1761 -1845). They lived in a log house located on present-day Kissel Hill Road near Lititz. Barbara and Charles are buried in the Rudy family cemetery, located a short distance north of their log house.
The chest may have been crafted in the cabinetmaking shop of the Long's close neighbor John Huhn (1749-1828). Members of the Long and Huhn familes are buried northeast of the Long-Stahl Farm in Lehn's Cemetery.
1795 New Testament owned by Catherine (Lehman) Long
Who lived here on the Long-Stahl Farm
(Testament purchased at auction by Clarke when 13 years old, in 1967,
It cost him $7.50, which was 30 hours of his labor, as he was working for 25 cents per hour.)
Above: German Inscriptions:
Catherine Lehman is born into this world June 23, 1789. This New Testament belongs to Catherine Long in Manheim Township, Lancaster County 1814.
This 1795 New Testament has two pages of inscription for Catherine (Lehman) Long (1789-1879). She was the second wife of Joseph Long, who built the barn here on the Long-Stahl Farm. Catherine moved here to the farm when she married Joseph, by 1814.
Clarke purchased this New Testament in 1967, at the household auction on the farmette which adjoined this Long-Stahl Farm. The auction was for Sallie B. Long and Nora B. Long. These two unmarried sisters were great granddaughters of Catherine (Lehman) Long, who had owned the Bible earlier.
Today that property of the Long sisters is part of Landis Homes Retirement Community. The Long sisters' farmhouse no longer stands. It was a mid 1800s frame structure that incorporated an earlier log house.
Clarke began collecting Lancaster County antiques at auction when he was 12 years old. This Testament was the 34th item he purchased, and remains in his collection today. The first antique item he purchased was the 1836 Mennonite catechism titled Christliches Gemüths Gespräch (Christian Spiritual Conversation). That title is the first comprehensive German Mennonite catechism, and was first published in 1702 in Ratzeburg, Germany.
Below: The Newspaper auction notice, for the 1967 auction where the 1795 New Testament was sold.
On the Long-Stahl Farm:
Image by Harvest Lane Farm Market on the Long-Stahl Farm.