|Johanna Charlotte Este
Johanna Charlotte Este
Charlotte Est came from Germany (where she was born about 1761) during the American Revolution. Her father was a surgeon in the German troops fighting with the British. The only name found in the lists which at all resembles Est was Estarch found with four physicians under General Staff Officers under Kynphausen. Could Est be a contraction or mutilated name? In the autumn of the year 1777, before Gen'l Washington withdrew his army to Valley Forge, a number of British officers were quartered at a house on 2nd Streets near Frankford. Among them was Doctor Est. Charlotte, who frequently assisted her father in his professional work, now rendered services to the cause by dressing the wounds of the soldiers and by prescribing and caring for those striken with small pox. Dr. Est's prescription was famous at the time and is a treasured heirloom in the Wenzell family. On the morning of Sept. 12, 1777, Charlotte overheard the British officers planning a surprise attack and the capture of General Washington. At daybreak on the following day she mounted her father's horse, and taking an amply mealsack, started for the mill for flour. She safely passed through the lines to the General's Headquarters at "Carlton" on Bowman's Lane (now Queen Lane) near Germantown, where she told the details of the plot and received hearty thanks from the Commander in Chief. Her mission performed, she returned by way of the Reading Road (Wissahickan Ave. on Township Line) and Nicetown Lane (Hunting Park Ave.) and stopping at the Frankford mill for flour, she again safely passed through the lines, without exciting suspicion of her errand, and first service to the American Cause. In 1778 or 1779, Charlotte married George Wenzell, a prosperous German farmer of Byberry, by whom she had eleven children. She was of a retiring disposition and while proud of the exploit which she recounted to her children and grandchildren, she rarely spoke of it to strangers fearing their scorn because of her German origin, the Hussians (as they were all called) being despised by the Americans even more than the British.
Johanna married Johann George Wenzell about 1779 in PA. (Johann George Wenzell was born about 1745 and died after 1810 in PA.)
From the book on Notable Women of Pennsylvania written by Mrs. Nelson Eberbach on Charlotte Este (1761-1801) "In 1779, she fell in love with and married an American soldier named George Wenzell."