To the Editor,
Reuben Ely, Sr., builder of the Jones County rock bridge being evaluated for reuse, was Pennsylvania “Dutch,” meaning Deutsche or German. Born in 1824, he was the grandson of 18th century immigrants of the Brethren faith (similar to Amish) who farmed near Reading in Berks County. After Reuben’s father died early, Reuben’s mother Sarah Gabi Ely married Andrew Shover, a weaver. The couple reared their growing family on the 124-acre farm Reuben inherited.