Jacob Metzler, born in 1755, was the son of Swiss-German Mennonite parents, fleeing religious persecution in their native homeland. Jacob married Maria Hess and together they moved onto this Homestead around 1786. Oral family tradition says that the gray limestone barn was built first and then the house afterwards. The Homestead stretched over 100 acres. Jacob and Maria farmed the land and had a small coverlet weaving business in this house. The loom was located in what is now the bedroom of the Jacob Metzler Suite. The road still bears the name of our great ancestor.
In 1790, Jacob and Maria gave birth to a daughter, Anna who died 6 days later. In their grief, they buried their child at the east side of the property. Later, Maria gave birth to one boy and six girls, all who grew up in this house. Jacob’s only son, Jacob junior, was born in 1798 on this property, and later inherited the land from his parents. In 1827, he sold the land around Anna’s grave to the “Society of Menonists” for a church meetinghouse and cemetery. The first wooden meetinghouse was erected in 1835, a three minute walk west of the Homestead. Today, the red brick Metzler’s Mennonite Church, built on the same site, still carries the family name.
Generation upon generation of family inherited the Homestead. Kenneth B. Hertzog, along with his wife, Arlene S. Hess, bought the farm after the death of his great uncle Elmer in 1975. They added modern indoor plumbing and a large sun-room on the south side. Here, they raised four children including your host, Scott Hertzog. They farmed barley, corn, alfalfa, soybeans and sorghum as well as raised beef cattle and small animals until 1989. In 1990, an agreement was made among the Old Order Amish and Mennonites neighbors to farm the Hertzog’s land and pay rent. This agreement continues today and is evidenced by the horse drawn farm machinery that may be found in our fields. In 2003, Scott along with his wife, Kristen purchased 23 acres of the original Homestead. After renovating the original parlor and dining room into the Jacob Metzler Suite, they opened The Hertzog Homestead Bed and Breakfast in November 2003.
Six families have resided here over a span two hundred and nineteen years. In April 2007 Scott and Kristen welcomed the birth of their son, Kiefer Hertzog making him the ninth generation to live on the Homestead from the same family blood line. The Hertzog Homestead continues to be passed on from generation to generation, within the family tree.