Daniel Row was born on July 10, 1813, in Dauphin County, Pennsylvania, as the War of 1812 was being fought, which his future father-in-law, Adam Frantz, was an enlistee. The only Pennsylvania Battle was on Lake Erie, where Captain Perry defeated the British, occurred two months after Daniel was born.

Daniel was the third child of John William Rowe and Barbara Rudy. Adding to the service-front, Daniel’s two grandfather, Francis Rowe and Jacob Rudy, fought for American Independence and a William Rowe did fight in the War of 1812, possibly Daniel’s father. Daniel’s older siblings were Wendell and Jacob. His younger siblings were Susan, John, Elizabeth, Sarah, and Joseph.

The Rowe and Rudy families were of German descent. Daniel lived to age fifty-eight, passing on the final day of July in 1871, in Dauphin County. Though that was a long life for the time, he was outlived by both his parents. His father, John William, was born in June 1785 in Strasburg, Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, and lived to age ninety-two, dying in 1877 in Berrysburg, Dauphin County. Daniel’s mother, Barbara, was born in April 1796 also in Strasburg. She died at age eighty-five on December 15, 1881, also in Berrysburg.

Daniel’s parents migrated to Dauphin from Strasburg, Pennsylvania soon after they married, around 1810. The Strasburg-Lancaster area was more developed than Dauphin, which was an area of forests pockmarked by subsistence farms. It is likely Daniel’s family moved for the adventure—a desire to strike out on their own and for land—perhaps urged on by relatives who were already in Dauphin.

It wasn’t an easy journey. Though only 75 miles, the journey likely took a week to ten days by Conestoga wagon, stagecoach, or on foot or horseback. They may have been in a caravan of settlers traveling on dirt roads that were little more than widened Indian trails passing through the Blue, Second, and Peters Mountains. In any case, when Daniel was born, they were in Dauphin in the Halifax area. Father John William was working as a farm laborer.

During the height of the Civil War, Daniel married Susan Frantz, a native of Dauphin County, in the late 1830s when she was in her late teens and he was twenty-five. This is evident because both were living with their parents in 1830 and they were together in 1840. Susan Frantz was born March 23, 1819 to a family of American Germans. She was named for her mother, Susan Giesemen, who was born in 1787 in Tulpehocken, Berks County. Her father, Adam Frantz, was born in 1780 in Lykens, Dauphin County. She was the third youngest of their eight children. Her older siblings were William, Jacob, Catherine, John, and Christina and her younger siblings were Sarah and Samuel. The family would mourn the early demise of both parents by Susan’s eighth birthday.

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