Fetterly, Philip

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About 1725 - 1730. Philip was most likely a Palatine from Germany, since he resided where the Palatines settled in the Mohawk Valley and the name "Fetterly" is a form of the German surname "Vetter" and means "little cousin". His parentage is unknown. He may have been a brother of Johannes Vetterly/Fetterly who lived in the German Flats area. Possible fathers: Hans Jacob Fetterly, arrived at Philadelphia in 1743 or Johannes Fetterly (b. about 1695), indentured servant who ran away from John Naglee of Philadelphia in 1729/1730. Johannes the run away is mentioned in Ben Franklin's Pennsylvania Gazette. The notice also mentions that he served in the "emperor's troops". Family legend has it that we were descended from a Hessian soldier. Could Philip Fetterly or his father have been Hessian soldiers? All of this information is speculation and has not been proven.


Philip was a farmer.

Military Service

Philip Fetterly is listed as serving in a 1767 pre-colonial militia of Albany, NY, in "NY Colonial Muster Rolls, 1764-1775, Vol. II". His name is spelled as "Philip Fatterlie". It is also possible that Philip served alongside his oldest son, Philip Jr., in the Revolutionary War. Both Philips are listed in the Albany area muster rolls found in "New York in the Revolution as Colony and State".

Philip's son, Peter Fetterly, United Empire Loyalist, had his farm confiscated for being on the Torie side in the Revolution. Peter Fetterly is not listed in the will of his father, Philip Fetterly, probably because he fought on the English side.

Philip's grandson (Peter's son), George Fetterly, fought on the English/Canadian side in the War of 1812. Many of the Fetterlys in Ontario are descended from Peter Fetterly, UEL.

Marriage & Children

Philip married Anna Margaretha Schumann/Schumacher (aka Margarita Schoein) (1730-1793) between 1750 and 1763. Anna Margaretha's parentage is unknown, although there were a large number of Shoemaker/Schumacher and some Shoe families in the area at the time. There exists a Schoharie Reformed Church record listing a Philip Feller m. Margarita Schoein in 1763. It should be noted that a Philip Feller family was also in this area at the time, so this record may be his marriage information. This latter record can be found at http://www.bettyfink.com.

Another piece of information located that *might* be this couple can be found in records from the Augustus Evangelical Lutheran Church of Trappe, PA, aka "The Organ Church", founded about 1740-1750. This record is also in "Marriages and Deaths Of Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, 1685-1800," by Charlotte Meldrum, Paperback, ISBN-13: 9781585490653. The text reads: "Fetter, Johan Philip and Schumannin, Anna Margretha, md. February 19, 1750, in Vincent Township, Chester county." Pennsylvania is where the Nickel Vetters family settled originally before moving to NY - they are the family of another Mohawk Valley torie - Lucas Vatter/Vetter (information on this family can be searched at www.familysearch.org). This all needs further investigation.

Their children were as follows:

  • Philip Fetterly Jr. (may have fought with his father Philip on American side in Rev. War.)
  • Peter Fetterly (He was a Loyalist and served the English Crown during the Revolution. Peter was in The King's Royal Regiment of NY and Butler's Rangers in Peter Ten Broeck's company). He returned to NY in 1783 and married Hannah Anna Bassler (abt. 1760-1840) at Schoharie. They removed to Williamsburg, Ontario, Canada where Peter received land as a United Empire Loyalist. Peter died in Ontario 1813. The Battle of Crysler's Farm (War of 1812) was partly fought on Peter's farm near the St. Lawrence River.
  • John Fetterly
  • Eva Fetterly
  • Margaretha Fetterly
  • Magdalena Fetterly
  • Barbara Fetterly
  • Maria Fetterly
  • Elizabeth Fetterly
  • I. Fetterly (born/died January 19, 1773 - it hasn't been determined if this was a child or adult death, nor has the sex of the individual been determined - see Margarita Schoein for information on this individual)
  • Lodewick Fetterly (member of company of riflemen formed after the Rev. War).


Philip Fetterly died between 1796 and 1803, as determined from his will. It is not known where he was buried. His wife Anna Margaretha was buried on the Fetterly family farm. His will mentions disbursement of several land holdings as follows: I do give and devise unto my two sons named Philip Fetter Jun. and Lodewyck Fetter all my estate both real and personal, which they are to have hold and occupie in the following manner, Philip shall have and hold the farm on which I now live and hold from under Stephen Van Rensselaer, together with the Buildings thereon and all the appurtenances appertaining thereunto, and Lodewyck shall have and hold a farm or lott of Land containing one Hundred acres of Land Situate and lying in the County of Schohary on the South side of the Mohawk River within the limits of a pattent granted to Frederic Young and others, and being that part of a lott distinguished on a General map of the same, by lot number fifty one, money accounts, notes, Bonds, dues and demands my said son Philip of Lodewyck, shall each have one equal half... [1]


  1. Transcription of the will of Philip Fetter(ly) recorded 21 Jan 1794. Proved 21 January 1804. Source: Albany, Albany County, New York records. Referenced at http://www.sampubco.com as FETTER, PHILIP, WATERVLIET, NY-1-3-94 and ordered from http://www.sampubco.com. Transcribed by Nancy Fetterly-Johnson.