Johann Rudolph "Ralph" Younkin was born on on July 7, 1766 in Bedminster Township, Bucks County, PA, the son of German immigrants Johannes "Heinrich" and Catharina (Scherer) Junghen. A record of his birth was written, in the German script, in the Keller's Lutheran Church documents.
When baptized as an infant, Rudolph's sponsors were Rudolph and Eve Ackerman.
In about 1788, at the age of about 22, he married 19-year-old Elizabeth Hockman (June 7, 1769-1831), also spelled “Hackman,” the daughter of Rudolph and Elizabeth Hockman.
The couple produced nine known children -- Elisabeth Junghen, "Squire" John Younkin Sr., Henry Younkin, Jacob Younkin, Samuel Younkin, Abraham Younkin, Mary Magdalena Atkins, Joseph Younkin and Sarah "Sally" Trout.
Perhaps in preparation for a move south and then west, Rudolph is known to have sold 118 acres of Hancock Township property to George Deal on May 13, 1796. That same day, he sold 87 acres of his Bedminister Township farm to Deal for £500.
Rudolph found himself the target of a legal inquisition in Bucks County in January 1797 when he was accused of keeping, maintaining a "certain ill-governed, disorderly House" frequented by "Men and Women of evil name" who had conducted "dishonest conversation." The adults were further said to have met on the Lord's Day (Sunday) to engage in drinking, tippling and misbehaving themselves" which was considered a "common nuisance."
In about 1798, the couple migrated to Loudoun County, VA. Their son Joseph was born in Lovettsville, Loudoun County in August 1806. Rudolph was enumerated in Loudoun in the 1810 census, written as "Ralph Younkin." Six of the family were in the household that year.
The family later moved into Somerset County, PA where three of Rudolph's brothers had settled - John (circa 1795), Frederick (1786) and Jacob (mid-1780s) They may have shuttled back and forth from Virginia and Pennsylvania during that time.
Research by the late Olive Duff shows that Rudolph’s name appears in a 1799 Somerset County court docket for the December term 1799, case no. 26, where Rudolph’s assignee George Swartz sued DeWalt Schneider over an unpaid debt of $72.
As Ohio opened to more orderly, safe settlement, they relocated again in about 1816, settling in Corning, Perry County, OH, where they lived the remainder of their lives. Rudolph is known to have sued "John Younkin" (relationship unknown,, but perhaps his son?) in a trespass case. When John paid for the court costs, the case was dismissed, No. 21 September Term 1823.
Elizabeth died in Corning on May 24, 1831 at the age of 61.
Rudolph also spent his final years in Corning. The details of his final fate are not yet known.
In the 1930s, researcher Otto Roosevelt Younkin made an entry in his notebook saying that the Rudolph Younkins were buried in a family cemetery in Fultonham, Perry County.
Rudolph is named in a profile of his grandson Rufus Henry Younkin in the 1914 book Story of Lee County, Iowa, by Nelson Cummins Roberts and Samuel W. Moorhead.
~ Son Jacob Younkin ~
Jacob Younkin (1796- ? ) was born on April 6, 1796 in Bedminster Township, Bucks County. He was christened in Keller's Lutheran Church on June 16 of the year of his birth, with Jacob Hockman serving as sponsor of the baptism.
Nothing more is known.