Civil War Blog

A project of PA Historian

Gratz During the Civil War – William Scheib House

Posted By on September 24, 2011

The house on this property, Lot #47, was built in the 1820s by Joshua Osman who purchased the lot from Simon Gratz in 1818.  Some time around 1824, Peter Crabb (1787-?), a blacksmith, purchased the property from Osman, and probably built the small building in the rear which he used as a blacksmith shop.  Peter Crabb along with his wife Mary Magdaline, began raising their family here.  Civil War veteran Edward Crabb (1832-1886) was probably born in this house before it was sold in 1832 to William and Elizabeth Wingert.  The Crabb family is discussed in another post on Lot #19, a property that is associated more with their Civil War experience in Gratz.  There are also other properties in Gratz that were owned or leased by members of the Crabb family and those will be noted as those properties are featured in posts.


The earliest known picture of the dwelling on this lot is from the second half of the twentieth century.

William Wingert, a chair maker, owned the property until 1836.  He conveyed it to George Moyer at that time, but because the transaction was not completely satisfied, the ownership went into the estate of George Moyer when he died in 1842.  A number of tenants occupied the house and outbuildings from then through the end of the Civil War, when it was purchased by William Scheib (1838-1913) in 1866.  Scheib was a tenant in the house during the Civil War but conducted his business at the Scheib Hide and Leather Company, a tannery located to the east of Gratz.  Since William Scheib was the primary tenant during the Civil War, and since one of his descendants, Carl Scheib, later became famous as a pitcher for the Philadelphia Athletics, this house should be referred to as the William Scheib House rather than the George Moyer House as Moyer was deceased and the property was held in his estate.  William Scheib was also an employer of many area residents who worked at the tannery during the war years and after.  Research is still being conducted to determine whether any of Scheib’s children or members of his extended family had Civil War service.

Dr. William Lebo (1847-1920)

William Scheib sold the house and lot in 1876 to Henry Lehr (1838-1909).  Henry Lehr is discussed in relation to his father Daniel Lehr’s property, the general store and post office at the northeast corner of Market Street and Centre Streets.  No known Civil War service has been located for Henry Lehr.  In 1870, William Lebo (1847-1920) was a medical student and living here .  Lebo had served in the 16th Pennsylvania Cavalry, Company M, as a private, from 30 October 1862 through 11 August 1865.  The picture of William Lebo shown above is cropped from a photograph taken at Jefferson Medical School in Philadelphia, where he and other medical students are working on a cadaver.  Dr. William Lebo is buried at St. Andrew’s Methodist Cemetery in Valley View, Schuylkill County, and a G.A.R. marker indicates his Civil War service.

Dr. William Lebo (1847-1920)

Henry Lehr sold this property after 1880 and its ownership went into the Sallada family where it remained until 1925.  Members of the Sallada family who served in the Civil War are not directly associated with this Gratz property.

This is part 18 of an ongoing series on Gratz during the Civil War.  Some of the information for this post was taken from the book A Comprehensive History of the Town of Gratz Pennsylvania.


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