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WINESBURG -- Descendants of Indian Salli will have their second reunion today, June 17.
The event will feature speakers about early American history, Native American history and the Hochstetler massacre and Indian craft packs for kids.
Also on the agenda are a planned visit to the gravesite of Andrew and Salli Schrock (weather permitting).
Vera Miller, a direct descendant of Indian Salli, shared some history. Indian Salli was the adopted eldest child of Joseph and Susana Gieber Hochstetler.
She was born Sept. 30, 1797, in Somerset County, Pa.
According to Miller, Salli was supposedly found in the forest by Joseph, but another tale says she was given to the family in exchange for the lives taken in a September 1757 massacre of Joseph Hochstetler's grandfather's family.
Salli married Andrew Schrock and they had 16 children, three of whom died as infants. They moved to Ohio after the War of 1812 and lived on a farm in Tuscarawas County.
"My brother, Paul E. Wengerd, learned of our great-great-grandmother, Indian Salli, being of Native American descent in the early 2000s from cousin Henry Schrock," Miller said. "When Paul died in 2005, I took over as family historian, having had an interest since my childhood. I can remember searching the descendants of Barbara Hohstetler and Christian Stutzman genealogy book as a 9-year old."
Soon after her brother's death, Miller attended a Holmes County Genealogical Society meeting in Nashville, and she was hooked.
"I was able to confirm through DNA testing the family's oral history that I was 9 percent Native American," Miller said.
Her sister Alice Miller also had DNA testing done and discovered she was 15 percent.
As fifth-generation from Salli, these are higher than would normally be expected from 1/16 Native Americans," Miller said.
Miller says her interest was piqued because all four of her grandparents died about 20 years before her birth.
"I want to know more about them by getting to know their descendants," she said. "That's why we put this reunion together."
Reporter Kevin Lynch can be reached at 330-674-5676 or firstname.lastname@example.org.