This building, of a medieval German-style construction, was built by the Palatine colonists for their minister, Peter Nicholas Sommer, who arrived in Schoharie from Hamburg, Germany in 1743.  The parsonage functioned not only as a home for Reverend Sommer, but also as a meeting place.

Reverend Sommer preached his first sermon in the new parsonage on September 18th, 1743, and continued to hold services in the building and on the grounds until a stone church was erected in 1750.  He was kept busy as a travelling minister, preaching to many of the surrounding communities.  Visiting them sometimes only once or twice a year, he performed all the rites of marriage, baptism, and burial at those times.

Reverend Sommer married Maria Kayser, a member of the Stone Arabia parish. They had ten children, including two sets of twins.

During the Revolutionary War troops loyal to the British raided the Schoharie Valley destroying the majority of homes and barns.  The parsonage remained unscathed, either by its isolation or because it was recognized as a house of worship. The stone Lutheran Church also survived the destruction, but later replaced by what is the current Presbyterian Church in Schoharie.

The Palatine House continued to be used as the Lutheran Parsonage until 1801, when it became a caretaker’s residence. Later, it was rented as a private home until 1971, when, with the aid of the Presbyterian Church and New York State Historic Trust, the Schoharie Colonial Heritage Association restored the 1743 Palatine House into a "Living Museum".







Schoharie Colonial Heritage Association
Depot Lane, P.O. Box 554  Schoharie, NY 12157
Phone:  (518)-295-7505

email: palatinehouse1743@gmail.com

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