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Welcome to the Kresge Family Website

Dedicated to the Descendants of

Conrad Kresge, the Pioneer



Above: the Kresge Family Memorial erected and dedicated August 19th, 1915, Gilbert Cemetery, Monroe Co., Pennsylvania.
Photograph Copyright ©2009 by Jeffrey L. Thomas



Welcome to the Kresge Family Website, a project dedicated to honoring and preserving the heritage of the Kresge family of Monroe County, Pennsylvania, and beyond. Below you will find a series of links to help you explore the history of the Kresge family, beginning with our common immigrant ancestor, Conrad Kresge, who was likely born born circa 1730-1735 in either the Palatine region of Germany, or in Switzerland. While the 17th century saw only limited immigration from German speaking lands to the new world, by the mid-1700s German immigrants began arriving by the thousands. By the eve of the American Revolution over 200,000 German speaking immigrants had arrived at the ports of Philadelphia and New York, and this inflow continued well into the 19th century. These immigrants came to America with the expectation of a better life and religious freedom, opportunities that were denied to them in their homeland. Conrad Kresge, who today is generally referred to as Conrad Kresge, the Pioneer, was among these 18th-century immigrants. Although no definitive record of his arrival in America has been found, it has been reasoned that Conrad Kresge arrived in America circa 1750. Whatever the family surname had been in their homeland, once in America the name was corrupted beyond recognition. In fact, for the first 50 years or so, the family name was spelled in a variety of confusing ways, none of which was actually KRESGE. Whatever the original name was, by the 1820 the name was being spelled KRESGE in a majority of the records.

Conrad and his descendants played a leading role in the development of the area, have held both civic and county office, in addition to serving their country in times of war. When the call to arms was issued by President Lincoln at the outbreak of the Civil War, the family responded by sending over two-dozen boys and men to defend the union. Today the descendants of old Conrad Kresge number in the thousands and can be found across America and abroad.

In 1903 the first official Kresge family reunion was held in Scranton, Pennsylvania, and with the exception of the years during World War Two, have held an annual reunion ever since. Since 1930 the reunion has been held at the West End fairgrounds in Gilbert, close to the Salem Church. In 1915 the Kresge monument pictured above was dedicated at the cemetery and is today considered a historical landmark of Monroe County.


Kresge Family Historians

Over the decades there have been many individuals who have contributed their talents to creating and updating the Kresge family record. These individuals include Professor Timothy Kunkle, George Kunkle, Clarence A. Hawk, Grace Kresge, and Kathy Shupp, as well as present day researchers Dale Berger, and Atwood Shupp. It should be mentioned that the creation of this website coincides with the release of the 2009 edition of the Kresge family genealogy compiled and published by genealogist Atwood James Shupp. Although this project is not intended to duplicate that effort, it does supplement it by presenting certain other information and reference materials for researchers. It is important, however, to understand that the aforementioned 2009 edition of the Kresge family genealogy, and not this website, is the de-facto and most comprehensive reference on the Kresge family available today. The 2009 Kresge Family History was released in August of 2009 in limited quantities on CD ROM.

Jeffrey L. Thomas


Conrad Kresge, The Pioneer

Conrad Kresge, Children & Grandchildren

Kresge Family Records

Kresge Family Cemeteries

The Kresge Family and Historical Publications

The Kresge Family Monument

The Kresge Family & the Civil War

Kresge Family Groups

Kresge Family Reunions


Home | Conrad Kresge Essay | Children & Grandchildren | Family Cemeteries | Kresge Monument | Family Groups | Family Records

The Kresge Family Website is designed, administered, and maintained
by Jeffrey L. Thomas

Copyright ©2009 by Jeffrey L. Thomas