Dolby Days Genealogy

Lancaster County PA

This old log home, vacant now for over 100 years, belonged to Isaac and Mary (Dolby) Danfield. It is located in Caernarvon Township in Lancaster County Pennsylvania, just down the hill and within sight, of the old Samuel & Catherine (Dolby) Reifsnyder home. Mary and Catherine were sisters, both daughters of Isaac & Dorothea (Dietz) Dolby. Isaac Danfield lived from 1797 to 1871. Mary was born 5 April 1821 and died 12 February 1860. They are both buried at the Styers Family Cemetery which I believe is close to the home. Both Isaac and Mary lived their entire lives in Lancaster Co PA. Children of Isaac and Mary were: Anna (1847), Maria (1848), Elizabeth (1853), Catherine (1856) and Daniel (1860) all born in Lancaster County.

An interesting story is attached to this couple and none of us know the circumstances of what really happened. Mary Dolby gave birth to an illegimate son on 10 August 1841 and she named him David Reifsnyder. He was the son of Daniel Reifsnyder but no marriage between them was ever found and the Baptism (6 June 1846) clearly states he was illegimate anyway. Dorothea Dolby (his grandmother) was a sponsor at the Baptism. Daniel (the father) was the brother of Samuel Reifsnyder born about 1800 and he apparently went blind through some unfortunate accident when he was around 30 years of age. Maybe this is the reason that Daniel and Mary never married, we don't know. Mary must have have married Isaac Danfield around 1846 as their first child was born in 1847. Isaac apparently knew, accepted and raised David as his own son. Its obvious that whatever transpired, the birth of an illegimate child, was accepted by the entire family.

Photos and Story Courtsey of Jodi Reifsnyder Adrian


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