- George H. Shriver
Schaff, Philip (01 January 1819–20 October 1893), theologian, biblical scholar, and church historian, was born Philipp Schaf (or Schaaf) in Chur, Switzerland, the illegitimate son of Philipp Sha(a)f, a carpenter, and Anna Louis Schindler, who came from a large farming family. (He changed the spelling of his name sometime around 1847, a few years after his arrival in the United States.) Schaff was born into poverty and obscurity as well as illegitimacy in the Swiss mountain canton of Graubündten. His father died before his first birthday, and his mother was ordered to leave Chur because of the scandal. Thus left as a ward of the city, he was reared in an orphanage. Having grown up without parents or siblings, in later life Schaff would never meet a stranger, male or female, and he would always yearn for an extended family....