Descendants of Philip Shaak Sr.
Welcome to my web site! My name is Mike Shaak. Many hours of work have been put into the research and documentation of these ancestors. There may be a date or some other information that isn't exactly correct, or what you may have, but for the most part everything is as accurate as I can get it. Most information can be gotten from the census. I hope you will benefit from the information I present here,
and if you can, contribute your family information and history to the web site.
This all started a few years ago when I asked my father who we were related to, his answer was "nobody" .
Well, I thought, this shouldn't take too long. That was several years ago and I'm still looking for people. There are many more still to find and several differant spellings of the same name ( Schaak. )
Through all this work I have learned alot about my heritage and the people that came before me. I've also met some very nice people and made some good friendships. There are some people who have been a big help and I'd like to thank them. Kay and Adam Diebus were a great help, and a very big thanks to them for having a Shaak reunion. I would like to organize a Shaak, Schaak gathering, even if you think that you aren't related, if there is enough interest. Also James M. Beidler of Roots and Branches, for writing a very nice article about this work and the Shaak's.
I believe that the Shaak's came to this country from Gremany, or possibly Switzerland, possibly on the ship Lydia on Oct 9, 1749. Allthough this is speculation on my part, as of now, and has to be proven later. On this ship were Michel Schack, Jacob Shaak, and William Shaak. Of the three only Michel could write his name, which would make him the oldest male, as the oldest male was, usually the only child taught to read and write. So you can speculate that they were brothers, or at least related. If they couldn't write, then the person that was taking down the information spelled the names the way that it sounded, hence all the different spellings. I believe that the German spelling would have been Schaak, because in the German language the C is needed to pronounce the AA. The C was eventually dropped to be more "English", but not always. In the Lebanon, Pa. area there are both spellings in the same family line.
In the mid to early 1700's there were several differant Shaak families in the Lebanon, Pa. area, which was in Dauphin county then, or maybe even Lancaster county. The spelling of the last name was varied as to who was doing the writing, usually not the person themselves, most couldn't write. These are a few of the names that I've come across; Johann Schaack, Henrich Schaack, Johannes Schaak, Nickles Shock, Wilhelm Shock, Andreas Schaack, Hanickel Schack, Phillip Schaak, Jacob Schaak, and a few more. The earliest I could find, to date, were Nicolaus and John Schaak about 1753. These families may have been related.
Philip Shaak is as far back as I can go in my family line, but there is a mention of a Michael Shaak being the father of Philip, which is mentioned only one time in the Biographical Annals of Lebanon County Pennsylvania, pages 95, 96,97, published in 1904. There is no other referance to any Michaels at any other time. There were no children named Michael, which seems strange, because at that time it was very important to pass down a namesake.
Many of the Shaak's that came to this area seemed to stay in South Lebanon County, as can be seen in this 1875 map of the county, but some didn't stay in the area, some went on to the western states, like Ohio and Kansas, and Illinois. I would really like to hear from other Shaak's, no matter what the spelling, to see if there is a connection. If you have any questions or information, please contact me.
Reuben Shaak was the author of the 1904 Biographical Annals. This was his home, built about 1895, Reuben Shaak house
John Shaak and Eve Six bought their home from Conrad Allwein, after his death, about 1813, Conrad Allwein house and lived there till Eve's death in 1856. This farm did remain in Shaak possession until the 1970's.
If you have any questions or can contribute information or pictures please contact me.
Thank you Mike Shaak
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