Joseph Funk Photo

Joseph Funk

Born: Apr 6, 1778

Death: Dec 24, 1862

Birthplace: Berks County

Profession: Writer

Nationality: United States

Joseph Funk

Date of Birth : Apr 6, 1778
Date of Death : Dec 24, 1862
Birth Place : Berks County

Joseph Funk was a pioneer American music teacher, publisher, and an early American composer. He invented a shape note system in 1851 for the Harmonia Sacra. Funk was born April 6, 1778, in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, the son of Henry and Barbara Funk, and a grandson of Bishop Heinrich Funck, a German Palatine settler of Bernese Swiss descent. Bishop Funck came to America in 1719, and was the first Mennonite bishop in America. As a boy, Joseph moved with his parents to Rockingham County, Virginia, and spent the rest of his life there. In 1804, Funk married Elizabeth Rhodes, and they had five children. After her death, he married Rachel Britton, and they raised nine children. He was a member of the Mennonite Church. In 1847, he established the first Mennonite printing house in the United States, at Mountain Valley, Virginia. Funk and his sons were active in organizing and teaching many singing schools in Virginia. Funk died December 24, 1862, and is buried in the cemetery at Singers Glen. Funk compiled and published seven books and periodicals: Ein allgemein nutzliche Choral-Music


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