The story of Peter Lehmann, later Layman, begins in Lauperswyl, Switzerland. There it was that three children were born to Magdalena and Johann between the births of Anna Barbara and Peter, (for whom we write). However, those three children were laid to rest in Switzerland before their parents came to America in 1849. So Peter was the oldest surviving son of Magdalena and Johann having been born the 21st of July 1836 and baptized the 7th of August, according to the records in Lauperswyl.
Peter Layman’s first land purchase was in Webster Township the 8th of May 1862, consisting of 80 acres located on the southwest corner of Stony Ridge and Devil’s Hole Roads, for which he paid $500. The legal description is Range 12, Town 6, E ½ of NE ¼ of Section 31. This became the family homestead where his children were all born and reared. He still owned it at his death, when it passed to his son, John.
On the 20th of December 1863 Peter married Helen M. Geckle, the daughter of Adam and Louisa Geckle, who had come to America from Wurtemburg, Germany. Helen Geckle, her siblings and parents were all born in Wurtemburg, Germany. The area was near Bad Herenalb, which is west of Stuttgart, near the Rhine River and also near the border of France. Adam Geckle had purchased 62 acres of land in Lake Township in 1861, lived there until 1872 when he sold that property and bought 80 acres on the Devil’s Hole Road, the second farm west of the Layman’s, thus becoming the Layman’s neighbor.
Peter’s application for naturalization states he arrived in the United States in August 1849. His Certificate of Citizenship was issued on the 1st of August 1866.
Photo above of the Peter Layman family property of Lloyd Fahle
- The Peter Layman Family Photograph
- Standing; Louise Fortlander, Charlie Layman , John Layman, George Layman, Lena Geisbuhler
- Sitting; Julia Muir, Peter & Helen Layman
- Children; Gus Rab, Albert Layman & Nora Engleheart
Note; there is a detailed history of the Lehmann family in Troy Township in the Luckey Library and also on this web site.