Settlers XLVI
July 2006



Weavers of A Legacy




Ancestors and Descendants of


Samuel Rogers (1760-1828)

Ann Gaunt (1762-1823)

 Yorkshire,  England




allied families







Jean Peterson Rosenkranz
(c) Copyright 2006. All rights reserved.
See further information on permitted usages at the end of this history.










 Weavers of A Legacy



Ancestors and Descendants of


Samuel Rogers (1760-1828)


Ann Gaunt (1762-1823)


Leeds,  Yorkshire,  England













Jean Peterson Rosenkranz





All mankind is of one author and is one volume. 
When one man dies, one chapter is not torn out of the book, but translated into a better language; and every chapter must be so translated
...God’s hand is in every translation–John Donnne




Other family history books by this author:


Ancestors and Descendants of John G. Christensen and Ruby V. Davis, 1999


Die Familie, Verwandten und Vorfahren von C. Arthur and Erwin Rosenkranz, 1999

(This book is written in English - not Deutsch)


Prairie Conquerors, 1999

This book is a genealogy of the ancestors and descendants of brothers,Theodore and Clarence Nelson, and their wives, Pearle Heitzman and Edith Larson. Theodore and Pearle (Heitzman) Nelson were the author’s maternal grandparents.






 “He who careth not from whence he came, careth little where he goeth.” Daniel Webster


Dear readers,


I invite you to join me on a journey back through time to mother England in the 1600's to meet the Rogers and allied families whose stories are the fabric of Weavers of A Legacy. The Rogers were literally weavers of their family legacy as they introduced mechanized weaving to post-revolutionary America. “Weavers” as applied to the allied families is usually figurative rather than literal although some were involved in the textile industry.


The allied families who married Rogers–Harding, Warren, Molyneux and Bird–emigrated from England in the late 1700's. They settled in northeastern Pennsylvania just a few years before Samuel Rogers (1) and some of his children moved to what would later become Forksville, Pennsylvania. The Bennett and Thurber families, however, were among the earliest colonists in New England arriving on the scene in the 1600's. How these families from Rhode Island, Massachusetts and Connecticut met and married Rogers sons and daughters is part of this story.


“How did this book come to be?” you might ask. What began as a hobby over 20 years ago eventually became a personal search for roots for your storyteller–a journey that lured me many times to the LDS Family History Library in Salt Lake City, to the National Archives and DAR Library in Washington DC, to courthouses and cemeteries in several states, and even a trek across the Atlantic Ocean. At some point during the research journey, the silenced voices of the ancestors moved me to share their stories with present and future generations. Grandpa John and Grandma Elizabeth Rogers aren’t just my grandparents to be hidden in a file drawer or a hard drive. Their stories (however small or great) deserve to be heard and shared. Weavers of a Legacy is the fourth book in response to the ancestral voices that refused to be silenced.


I have personalized Weavers of A Legacy by including comments and tentative interpretations of confusing and contradictory data. My research methods professor would be aghast at this deviation from objective, technical writing. The longer I researched and became “acquainted” with these long dead relatives, the harder it was to be impersonal or scientifically objective.


As an amateur history and sociology buff, I had hoped to include the historical setting to give depth and substance to the lives of the grandfathers and grandmothers I met on my journey. To do justice to the historical framework, however, would have required several more years of research and writing. Weavers of A Legacy represents the manageable version of my original vision. Within these pages you’ll find only a splattering of history.


The earliest Rogers biographies are compiled from the original parish records of Yorkshire, England. With few exceptions the parish birth dates were actually baptism/christening dates. Christening usually, but not always, took place from two weeks to two months after the actual birth. Parish death records were usually the burial date rather than the actual death date.

Chapter 1 covers the pre-emigration Rogers in Yorkshire, England and introduces us to the immigrant ancestors, Samuel (1) Rogers and Ann Gaunt. In chapter 2 we continue the emigration saga of Samuel (1) and Ann from England to northeastern Pennsylvania and begin the direct-line descendancy of this writer through Samuel (2) and Mary Akroyd Rogers. Chapter 3 carries the descendancy of Samuel (2) and Mary Rogers for three more generations to Dakota Territory. In chapter 4 we return to Pennsylvania to meet the Harding, Warren, Molyneux and Bird “in-laws.” Chapters 5 and 6 take us to colonial New England where we encounter the Bennett and Thurber families. The biographies in these first six chapters are primarily those of your storyteller’s direct-line ancestors, but occasionally a cousin or uncle finds his voice and shares his story. Chapter 7 is a tribute to the descendants of Benjamin Rogers, a younger son of the immigrants, Samuel (1) and Ann Rogers. This final chapter was authored by Benjamin descendant, John Rogers Woolston of Princeton, New Jersey.


Laying out the descendancy of these very large families has been one of the greatest challenges in writing this book. A generational numbering system was used to assist the reader in tracking generations. Family group sheets are included at the end of chapters 1 through 6 to further aid the reader. Direct-line ancestors of this writer are underlined the first time the names appear and sometimes thereafter to avoid confusion. The three direct-line Samuel Rogers are further identified by generation with the numeric code of (1), (2) and (3).


Appendix A is a family group sheet for Samuel (4) who is my uncle rather than grandfather, but some of you readers do descend from Samuel (4) and requested this family be represented. Richard “Dick” Rogers, now deceased, descends from Samuel (4) and assisted me with the research years ago. I am pleased to be able to honor his contribution in this small way and hope his descendants might be inspired to write an in-depth chronicle about the Samuel (4) line. Appendix B is a descendant report of Joseph Rogers, brother to Samuel (2), as submitted by Delores Harding Lutz of Charlottesville, VA. Appendix C is a descendant report for Richard Harding, brother to my grandmother, Sarah Harding, who married Samuel Rogers (3). That report was submitted by Delores Harding Lutz. Appendix D is “Notable Thurbers.” The final appendix (E) brings us back to where we start with the direct-descendant report from John Rogers carried for nine generations to this writer’s paternal grandmother, Edna Maethorne Rogers. You will note on this report that the marriage of first cousins, Samuel Rogers (2) and Mary Akroyd of Generation 6, puts an interesting jog in the tree and results in the duplication of the descendants from Generation 6 through 9. That’s one of the least of the challenges created by numerous cousin marriages among the families woven into this book.


The index is computer-generated by my FamilyTreeMaker program and lists only names from the genealogy reports–not the biographical texts. The index will lead you to the relevant chapter. My apologies for the less than complete index.


Errors will likely be found in spite of careful scrutiny and proofing by multiple editors. A “Correction and Addition” page is included at the end of the book to record the corrections. I invite reader feedback on errors in facts and dates and would especially appreciate the documentation to support the corrections submitted.


Unfortunately, it is usually our grandmothers whose stories didn’t get recorded in the annals of history. This book does little to remedy that travesty. It is essentially patriarchal. As a small memorial gesture, I have included the family group sheet for my paternal grandmother, Edna Maethorne Rogers, at the end of chapter three. Grandma Edna Rogers Peterson’s biography was intentionally omitted because it is included in the Peterson family history book in progress, A Legacy of Courage.


There are still many unanswered questions about “from whence we came,” and it is my fervent wish that someone who reads Weavers of A Legacy will be motivated to continue the quest.


Jean Peterson Rosenkranz

Dedication and Acknowledgments


Weavers of a Legacy is dedicated to the memory of my paternal grandmother, Edna Maethorne Rogers Peterson, and of my cousin, Ferne Rogers Roggow.


My grateful appreciation to the following people who contributed in so many different ways to this book. The deceased will not know the value of their contributions and support, but to the rest of you, I offer my sincerest gratitude:


Myron Northrop (deceased).


Ferne Rogers Roggow (deceased).


Richard “Dick” Rogers (deceased) and Mavis Rogers.


Marlys “Peggy” Peterson Bloom who passed on her compiled Rogers data to me many years ago. I thank Peggy also for her editing assistance and encouragement during many years of research on both the Rogers and Peterson lines.


Eldon “Bud” Rogers for his several contributions to the manuscript and editing assistance.


Thomas Grimshaw for his expertise in computer technology, his photo contributions and editing assistance.


Delores Harding Lutz for her research assistance and contribution of the Joseph Rogers descendant report.


John Rogers Woolston, descendant of Benjamin Rogers, for his contribution of chapter 7.


Charlotte Brennan, Bennett genealogist. Without Charlotte’s research assistance, there would be no separate Bennett chapter.


Florence Thurber Gargaro, Thurber genealogist. Without Florence’s research assistance, there would be no separate Thurber chapter.


Delores Harding Lutz, Harding genealogist and contributor of the Richard Harding descendant report.


Connie King McMichael, Warren genealogist.


Lorin “Larry” F. Pardoe, genealogist, for editing the Harding, Warren, Molyneux and Bird chapter as well as extensive research assistance. Larry is related in some manner to the above families plus Rogers.


Dr. Robert E. Sweeney, Sullivan County, Pennsylvania Genealogy Project (sponsored through PA GenWeb and posted by RootsWeb) for his generous copyright permission of materials on this award-winning genealogy site and for linking me with other Pennsylvania researchers and resources.


Ancestral Hunt: Three Rogers Cousins meet in Salt Lake City, Utah, April 2003--Eldon "Bud" Rogers, Jean Rosenkranz, and Tom Grimshaw


Table of Contents



 Ch 1 Yorkshire Rogers: Weavers of A Legacy.................................................................... 3

 John Rogers and Elizabeth Squire Family Group Sheet ................................................... 11

 William Rogers and Elizabeth (unknown) Family Group Sheet.......................................... 12

 Benjamin Rogers and Ann Pearson Family Group Sheet.................................................. 13

 Joseph Rogers and Elizabeth Holmes Family Group Sheet............................................... 14

 Samuel Rogers (1) and Ann Gaunt Family Group Sheet................................................... 16


 Ch 2 Immigrant Rogers: Early Settlers of Lycoming County, Pennsylvania....................... 18

 Samuel Rogers (2) and Mary Akroyd Family Group Sheet................................................ 32


 Ch 3 Pioneering Rogers: Westward Migration................................................................... 34

 Samuel Rogers (3) and Elizabeth Harding Family Group Sheet........................................ 53

 Jeremiah Rogers and Martha Bennett Family Group Sheet............................................... 54

 Jeremiah "Jay" Rogers and Bessie Cummings Family Group Sheet.................................. 55

 Edna Rogers and Earl Peterson Family Group Sheet....................................................... 57


 Ch 4  Harding, Warren & Allied Families: England to Pennsylvania................................... 58

 James Harding Family Group Sheet.................................................................................. 69

 John Warren Family Group Sheet..................................................................................... 70

 William Molyneux Family Group Sheet............................................................................... 72

 Powell Bird Family Group Sheet........................................................................................ 73


 Ch 5 Bennett: English Ancestors in Colonial America........................................................ 75

 John Bennett and Ursula White Family Group Sheet......................................................... 86

 John Bennett (2) and Elizabeth Parke Family Group Sheet............................................... 87

 Thomas Bennett and Jemima Harrington Family Group Sheet.......................................... 89

 Josiah Bennett and Susannah Bates Family Group Sheet................................................ 90

 Josiah Bennett (2) and Sarah Baker Family Group Sheet................................................. 92

 Ichabod Bennett and Nancy Peterson Family Group Sheet............................................... 94

 George  Bennett and Martha Wilcox Family Group Sheet................................................. 95

 Solomon Bennett and Lydia Thurber Family Group Sheet................................................ 96

 Outline Descendant Tree of John Bennett......................................................................... 98


 Ch 6  Thurber: More English Ancestors in Colonial America ............................................ 99

 John and Priscilla Thurber Family Group Sheet.............................................................. 111

 James Thurber and Elizabeth Bliss Family Group Sheet................................................. 112

 Samuel Thurber and Rachel Wheeler Family Group Sheet............................................. 114

 Daniel Thurber and Lois Peck Family Group Sheet......................................................... 116

 Nathaniel Thurber and Polly Shores Family Group Sheet............................................... 118

 Alfred Thurber and Celia Bennett Family Group Sheet................................................... 119


 Ch 7  From Weavers to Building Movers:  Benjamin Rogers Descendants..................... 120

Descendant Report of Benjamin Rogers  . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 126



Appendix A: Samuel R. Rogers (4) Family Group Sheet................................................... 133

Appendix B: Descendant Report of Joseph Rogers.......................................................... 134

Appendix C:  Outline Descendant Tree of Richard Harding.............................................. 141

Appendix D: Notable Thurbers.......................................................................................... 143

Appendix E: Outline Descendant Tree of John Rogers to Edna Maethorne Rogers......... 145


Index................................................................................................................................. 146


Chapter 1 






Yorkshire Rogers: Weavers of A Legacy


It is indeed a desirable thing to be well-descended, but the glory belongs to our ancestors. ~~~ Plutarch (c. 46-125 A.D.) Greek essayist, biographer ~~~


Because most of us have not had the opportunity to visit the English Yorkshire country that was home to our Rogers ancestors, perhaps a brief sketch of the various political and religious divisions of English counties is in order.  Yorkshire was the county unit of government located in north-central England. The counties were further divided into administrative local units of government called ridings. Our Rogers lived in West Riding. Churches were the primary recorders of the vital statistics so the division by parish is of paramount genealogical significance in locating family records.

Leeds, the largest town of Yorkshire, was the capital of West Riding. The map below shows the parishes/villages/suburbs of Calverley, Bramley and Stanningley in relation to the City Centre of Leeds. These parishes are where the christening, marriages and burials of our ancestors are recorded. Calverley, where the bulk of parish records were found, was adjacent to the River Aire and to the Leeds and Bradford railway. 


Leeds was the chief seat of the woolen industry in the 1700-1800's, an industry which was significant in the history of the Rogers both in England and in America. Commerce flourished at Leeds because of its inland navigation to both eastern and western seas via canals and navigable rivers as well as its modern railway system.[1] The name Leeds is the modern version of 'Leedes', 'Leodis' and 'Loidis which may have originally come from a Celtic word, Ladenses, meaning people living by the strongly flowing river.


Does our family descend from John Rogers, the Martyr?


In 1970 Rogers family historian, Myron Northrup, employed an English professional genealogist, D. H. Barron, from Yorkshire, England, to try to trace the Rogers line back to John Rogers, the Martyr (circa1501-1555), who was burned at the stake for heresy at Smithfield on February 4, 1555 during the bloody reign of Queen Mary. Heresy, among other acts as ruled by the Catholic queen, included refusal of the mass and marriage of the clergy.


Our immigrant ancestors probably had very good reason to believe that they descended from John, the Martyr; however this lineage still remains unproven. The ascendancy from the Bible of Samuel (2) reads:


“My father Samuel Rogers born at Standah, a town between Leeds and Bradforth on the 1st of May 1760; Joseph Rogers, my father’s father born in 1732. His father’s name was William Rogers. His father’s grandfather was a son of one of the sons of John Rogers, the martyr.” [2]


Assuming that Standah[3] is a misspelling of the town Stanningley where Samuel (1) was born, it seems a bit strange that Samuel (2) would have made such an error since he also lived in the Leeds area until he emigrated at the age of 18. A family Bible that belonged to Joseph Rogers (birth year for Joseph listed as 1732 date in Samuel’s Bible) is also referenced, but the family record contained therein was lost by the time Rogers descendants began seriously trying to make the connection to the Martyr.[4] Note that the 1732 birth year for Joseph Rogers conflicts with his actual christening record of December 25, 1735 unless Joseph was three years old when he was christened which is not likely.


Mr. Barron’s research proved that Joseph’s father was Benjamin Rogers (1705-1792) rather than William Rogers (circa 1669-1740) as noted in Samuel’s Bible. Barron also added the parents of William Rogers as John Rogers (circa 1645-1711) and Elizabeth Squire (? - 1713).[5] This still leaves about 150 years gap between the birth of John Rogers of Pudsey, Yorkshire, and John Rogers, the Martyr. Myron Northrop writes that he could not afford to continue paying Mr. Barron to try to search any further, and that it was Mr. Barron’s opinion that older records would be very difficult to prove with any degree of integrity.

I spent one of my annual pilgrimages to the LDS Family History Library in Salt Lake City a number of years ago duplicating the research of Mr. Barron through the English parish records in that library’s holdings.  With only a few minor exceptions my work verified that done by Mr. Barron. For any Rogers descendants who might wish to continue this research, I recommend a review of the Bishop's Transcripts, 1600‑1834; Church of England, St. Peters Church, Leeds, England (Filmed by the Genealogical Society of Utah, 1977), and The Registers of the Parish Church of Calverley, Volumes II and III by Samuel Margerison, Bradford: G. F. Sewell, Printer, 1887 available at the LDS Family History Library; the Sullivan County Genealogical Web Page at; and “History of the Family ROGERS” available on CD at,


Let’s begin our genealogy journey now with the earliest confirmed Rogers ancestor.


Generation 1: John Rogers and Elizabeth Squire


John Rogers lived in Leeds, Yorkshire, England. Assuming he was in his early to mid-20's at the time of his marriage to Elizabeth Squire on September 23, 1668,[6] we can estimate his birth year between 1643 and 1648. Elizabeth undoubtedly was also born in Yorkshire. John and Elizabeth were the parents of William (this writers direct-line ancestor) born 1669, John born 1672, Anne born 1674, Richard born 1677, Elizabeth born 1679, Susannah born 1681, and Marmaduke born 1683 all of whom were born in Pudsey.[7] John Rogers was buried on August 13, 1711 in Pudsey, Yorkshire, England. Elizabeth Squire Rogers was buried on October 29, 1713 also at Pudsey.[8] 


Generation 2: William Rogers and Elizabeth (surname unknown)


William Rogers, christened May 5, 1669,[9] was married to Elizabeth, maiden name unknown, about 1692.  The English genealogist, already identified, found records of the following children born to William and Elizabeth: John born 1699, Joseph born 1702, Benjamin born 1705, Ann born 1708, James born 1710, John born 1713, George born 1715-1716, Frances born 1717, and Martha born 1719. In addition to these children the Calverley parish records include Martha with a father William Rodgers, baptized on September 10, 1693, and another child with the same father (child’s name not recorded nor the sex) baptized on March 22, 1695.[10]  It is likely that these children belong in this family. Martha could have died in infancy or early childhood since there is another Martha born in 1719. Of the remaining children, James died at age 3, George died at 4 months; and it is assumed that John who was christened July 1,1699 died before his brother’s birth in 1713.  William Rogers was buried on June 8, 1740. Elizabeth was buried on June 16, 1748 or 1749.[11]  A OneWorldTree source, not documented, shows wife of William Rogers as Mary rather than Elizabeth.


Generation 3: Benjamin Rogers and Ann Pearson

Samuel Margerison, The REGISTERS of the Parish Church of Calverley in the West-Riding of the County of York, Vol. II, 1883.


Benjamin Rogers, christened September 23, 1705 in Pudsey, Yorkshire, England,[12] married Ann Pearson on August 17, 1735 in Calverley Parish, Pudsey.[13] Benjamin and Ann were the parents of Joseph born 1735, Benjamin born 1737, Reuben born 1739-1740, Ann born 1742-1743, William born about 1744, Hannah born about 1745 and Ann born 1750.  D. H. Barron’s research shows William christened September 27, 1745 and Hannah christened December 27, 1745 which adds some confusion to the birth years for William and Hannah.  Possibly William and Hannah were twins and either the September or December month is in error. Although no record was found for the death of Ann born 1742-1743, she would have died before her sister, Ann, was born in 1750. Benjamin was buried on November 21, 1792 in Pudsey, Yorkshire, England; and his wife, Ann, was buried on June 22, 1793 in Pudsey.


Generation 4: Joseph Rogers and Elizabeth Holmes


Joseph Rogers, christened December 25, 1735,[14] married Elizabeth Holmes on April 17, 1755 in Calverley Parish (banns posted April 2, 1755.[15]  Joseph and Elizabeth Rogers of Stanningley, Yorkshire supposedly had 17 children, of whom only six survived their parents according to the Rogers biography, “John Rogers, the English Martyr, and His Descendants in America.”[16] The six who survived their parents were Samuel (l), Margaret, Joseph, Mary, Sarah and George.  Since D. H. Barron's family chart ends with Joseph Jr. born about 1772, one would wonder if Joseph and Elizabeth moved to a different parish after 1772 where four additional children were born.  At any rate, if there were 17 children, four have still not been accounted for.


The Now and Then Rogers biography states that Elizabeth died soon after the birth of George in about 1782 and that the oldest son, Samuel (1), raised his youngest brother. Research by D. H. Barron, however, gives the burial date of Elizabeth as August 17,1794, and this date is more likely to be correct. That would mean George was 12 years old when his mother died. His brother, Samuel (1) was married and already had a large family of his own so he could very well have taken George into his family. No death record has been found for Joseph Rogers, but he likely died before his wife.


Our primary interest will be the biography of Joseph and Elizabeth’s son Samuel (1), but let’s recap what little is known about Samuel’s surviving siblings, all of whom eventually came to America:[17]


George came with his brother Samuel (1) in 1801. He resided near Baltimore and died there about 1845 (or later) without issue.

Margaret married Jeremiah Akroyd and they emigrated in 1802. Margaret and Jeremiah settled at the Forks of the Loyalsock Creek in Lycoming County, Pennsylvania (now Sullivan County). After the great flood in 1816 they moved to Muncy, Pennsylvania.  Both Margaret Rogers and Jeremiah Akroyd carry the blood line through the marriage of their daughter, Mary Akroyd, to Samuel Rogers (2) (1782-1857).                      

Sarah emigrated during the turbulent War of 1812, leaving her husband to wait out the war in England. She lived with her bachelor brother, George Rogers, near Baltimore until the war was ended and her husband, George Beecroft, was able to join her. They then settled in Trenton, New Jersey where Sarah died in 1867. Sarah and George were the parents of seven children. Some of their descendants carried on the manufacturing of woolen goods.

Joseph emigrated in 1812 and settled in New Jersey where he worked in the woolen goods business.

Mary emigrated with her brother, Joseph, in 1812.


Generation 5: Samuel Rogers (1) and Ann Gaunt


Samuel Rogers (1), christened June 11, 1760 at Stanningley, Yorkshire, England,[18] [19] will be briefly introduced in this chapter as the primogeniture of the English-American Rogers. We will pick up his emigration story after we’ve crossed the Atlantic Ocean in chapter 2.   Samuel (1) married Ann Gaunt on January 1, 1783 at St. Peters Church (Church of England), Leeds Parish, Yorkshire, England.[20]  Samuel (1) and Ann were the parents of Samuel (2) born 1782, Joseph born 1784, Jonathan born 1785, John born 1787, William born 1788, Hannah born 1790, Richard born 1791, David born 1793, Abram born 1794, Elizabeth born 1795, Martha born 1796, Benjamin born 1797, Reuben born 1798 and Jacob born 1800 in Yorkshire, England; and George born 1802, Isaac born1804, Moses born 1806, and Mary Ann born 1808 in Pennsylvania. 


Samuel Rogers (1) was a cloth weaver by trade in Leeds, England. Leeds has been the home of many industries, but wool was its first industry of significance. If readers are interested in the details of the early woolen factories where our Rogers were trained and worked, they may wish to read The Leeds Woolen Industry 1780-1820, W. B. Crump., Ed., Leeds, England: The Thoresby Society, 1931. 


It is likely that the earlier Rogers ancestors were among the pre-industrial clothiers who carried out almost all of the processes in the manufacturing of the cloth in their own homes including the carding, dyeing and weaving. These early domestic factories usually included a workshop, a loom house and dye house, and every member of the family starting at a young age would have been involved in learning the trade.


By the 1770's, the Industrial Revolution was beginning to profoundly change the face of the woolen industry. Mechanical inventions were replacing water power with steam engines and hand labor with machinery.  Sir Richard Arkwright is noted for several inventions or adaptations of previous inventions that he modified for the woolen mills including a carding engine, a spinning frame and the slubbing engine. Two other inventions borrowed from the cotton industry, the fly shuttle and the spinning jenny, were used in the Leeds woolen factory by 1780. The fly shuttle doubled the previous output at the broad loom, and the spinning jenny greatly increased the spinning speed.  In 1792 a firm of merchants—Wormald, Fountaine and Gott–built a “state-of-the art” woolen factory powered by a James Watt rotative steam-engine for the first time instead of water power.[21] The new factory mill offered employment to the residents of Bramley and Pudsey, Yorkshire where our ancestral Rogers resided.


The woolen factory at Leeds is noted for the creation of the earliest example of twilled cloth. The twill was a diagonal rib across the cloth produced by dividing the warp equally so that two threads were above and two below the shuttle as it passed through the shed.[22] 


Americans were still spinning and weaving woolen goods by hand as indicated by the 1810 census returns recording 315,000 hand looms.  Samuel (1) and his sons had learned the most up-to-date techniques of cloth milling and weaving at Leeds and would introduce that technology in Delaware and Pennsylvania.  It seems the Rogers were in the right place at the right time with their skills when the War of 1812 led to a very profitable contract with the United States government manufacturing Kersey (twill) cloth uniforms. The contract timeliness may not have been entirely serendipitous though. Eldon “Bud” Rogers, Hermiston, Oregon, researching the historical framework for the Rogers emigration, noted the link between Alexander Hamilton and the promotion of the textile industry in the New World. Taking editorial liberties, I have excerpted parts of Bud’s research paper below:


A biography of Alexander Hamilton by Ron Chernow may answer the question of, “Why did the Rogers come to America?” In order to paint the picture for the reason Samuel (I) and Samuel (2) may have emigrated from England, it will be necessary to review some historical events.


In the 1760's there were many technological developments in England. Among them was the technique for rapid production of textiles. Hamilton saw the great need to diversify the economy of the United States from a purely agrarian society and add industrial activity if this country was to ever become the economic power house he visualized. Chernow writes, “No industry was being transformed more dramatically than British textiles. Sir Richard Arkwright had devised a machine called the water frame that used the power of rushing water to spin many threads simultaneously. By the time Hamilton was sworn in as treasury secretary, Arkwright’s mill on the Clyde in Scotland employed more than 1300 hands.”[23]


Before the Revolutionary War, England forbade manufacturing in the colonies. Chernow notes, “The colonists had rebelled against an imperial system that restricted their manufactures and

forced them to hawk their raw materials to the mother country, stifling their economic potential. England had imposed a law banning the export to America of any tools that might assist in the manufacture of cotton, linen, wool and silk. Skilled mechanics who worked in textile factories were forbidden to emigrate upon pain of fine and imprisonment–for even if they couldn’t smuggle out blueprints, they could memorize methods and peddle this valuable information abroad...a young man named Samuel Slater slipped through the tight protective net thrown by British authorities around their textile business. As a former apprentice to Sir Richard Arkwright, Slater had sworn that he would never reveal his boss’s trade secrets.”[24] But he lied. Hamilton teamed up with Tench Coxe, assistant treasury secretary, and planned the Society for the Establishing Useful Manufactures. Coxe lured a George Parkinson who had studied with Arkwright to develop the town of Paterson, New Jersey for various kinds of manufacturing activities.[25] Although Hamilton retired from his post as secretary of the treasury in 1795, his successor, Oliver Wolcott Jr., was heavily influenced by Hamilton’s philosophy about industrialization of the nation.


Bud offers the following speculation about the possibility of a connection between Alexander Hamilton and our Rogers ancestors:


It is documented that Samuel (1) and Samuel (2) were in the textile business in England. Upon arriving in the United States, it was a short time before property was acquired that had the desired water source to build a water-powered textile mill in Delaware. The expense would have been rather large. Could Hamilton have “encouraged” the government to support Samuel (1) and his sons in this endeavor? Could Samuel have even been recruited to set up shop in this country?


There is no indication that the Rogers were wealthy people when they emigrated from England, and the question of how they had the financial resources to establish a major industry so soon after emigration lends intrigue to Bud’s questions. In the next chapter we will explore how the Rogers wove their legacy as early settlers in Pennsylvania with or without pre-arranged financial backing.

The Leeds Woolen Industry 1780-1820, The Thoresby Society, Leeds, England, 1931, Plate III


The Leeds Woolen Industry 1780-1820, The Thoresby Society, Leeds, England, 1931, Plate III


The Leeds Woolen Industry 1780-1820, The Thoresby Society, Leeds, England, 1931, Plate III, Plate V



[1]John Marius Wilson, The Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales, Vols. I and III, Edinburgh, Glasgow, London, Dublin and New York: A. Fullarton & Co.

[2]The Now and Then, (hereafter The Now and Then) Vol. 3, Muncy, PA, May and June, 1892, No. 12. p. 231.

[3]A search of English records has not produced any indication of a town or parish “Standah.”

[4]The Now and Then, p. 231.

[5]D. H. Barron, 38 Huddersfield Rd., Halifax, Yorkshire, England, (hereafter D. H. Barron) Descendancy Chart from John Rogers (1645-1711), prepared from research conducted from 1970 to 1973 and submitted to Myron Northrop 9304 Sylvan Hills Rd., North Little Rock, Arkansas 72116.   

[6]Samuel Margerison, The Registers of the Parish Church of Calverley, (Bradford: G. F. Sewell, 1887), Vol. II, p. 130.

[7]D. H. Barron.

[8]Samuel Margerison, The Registers of the Parish Church of Calverley, (Bradford: G. F. Sewell, 1887), Vol. III, p. 179.

[9]Samuel Margerison, The Registers of the Parish Church of Calverley, (Bradford: G. F. Sewell, 1887), Vol. II, p. 88.

[10]Samuel Margerison, The Registers of the Parish Church of Calverley, (Bradford: G. F. Sewell, 1887), Vol. III, pp. 26, 30.

[11]D. H. Barron.

[12]Samuel Margerison, The Registers of the Parish Church of Calverley, Vol. III (Bradford: G. F. Sewell, 1887), p. 50.

[13]Bishop's Transcripts, 1600‑1834, (hereafter Bishops Transcripts) Filmed by the Genealogical Society of Utah, 197, (August 17, 1735, Benjamin Rogers and Ann Pearson of this parish by banns Parish of Calverley, Yorkshire, England).

[14]Bishops Transcripts, (Church of England, Dec. 25, 1735 christening, Joseph, son of Benjamin Rogers, Pudsey, Calverley Parish).


[16]The Now and Then, p. 228.

[17]The Now and Then, p. 228.

[18]Bishop's Transcripts, 1600‑1834, (Church of England, St. Peters Church, Leeds, England: Baptism Samuel, son of Joseph Rodgers, June 22, 1760).

[19](Note: The tombstone dates for Samuel (1) are 1761-1828. The 1761 is in conflict with the actual church christening record of 1760.)

[20]Bishop's Transcripts, 1631‑1837, (Church of England, St. Peter's Church, Leeds, (January 1, 1783, Samuel Rogers of Leeds Parish and Ann Gaunt by banns). Note: Other Rogers historians note the marriage date as January 1, 1782 without reference to their source. The original parish record is January 1, 1783.

[21]W. B. Crump, M.A., Ed., The Leeds Woolen Industry 1780-1820, Leeds: The Thoresby Society, 1931, pp. 12,13.

[22]Ibid. p. 54.

[23]Ron Chernow, Alexander Hamilton, Penguin Books, April 2004.


[25]Note: Alexander Hamilton is credited as the founder of Paterson, New Jersey; and the town is noted as the cradle of the Industrial Revolution in America.  Paterson is located near waterfalls on the Passaic River which provided the power for the town to become a major industrial center. 



Chapter 2 






Immigrant Rogers: Early Settlers of Lycoming County, Pennsylvania


Generation 5: Samuel Rogers (1) and Ann Gaunt

This generation continues from chapter 1.


Samuel Rogers (1) with his wife, children and brother, George, immigrated from Liverpool in the summer of 1801 and joined his son, Samuel (2), in Pennsylvania. The sea voyage was rife with danger and tragedy. The calamities of the voyage as told by Ann Gaunt Rogers have been preserved in The Now and Then Rogers biography as footnoted.[1] Ann related that when her little ones cried for water, she gave them bits of hard, dry toasted bread to chew and abate their thirst. She told of the death of baby Jacob, 5 months old, who died from the dreaded smallpox outbreak and was buried at sea. After the ship had anchored about three miles from shore, some drunken sailors accidently set a fire and nearly burned down the ship. The rendition in the above source states that Uncle George had his leg badly scalded during the fracas. Four-year old Benjamin was missing when the family was ready to disembark. Joseph, 17, rushed back to the berths and found his brother asleep. Finally, the family arrived on American soil with 10 of their 14 children. Besides the child who died at sea, they had buried Abram, Elizabeth and Martha in England. Four more children would be born in their new homeland.


Samuel (1) did not stay long on the rented farm near Philadelphia. In 1802 he entered into a lease agreement with land agent Joseph Priestley, son of the eminent Dr. Joseph Priestley of Leeds, whom the Rogers would have known before immigration as the Priestley families were woolen cloth workers and dressers of West Riding. The elder Priestley was the discoverer of oxygen, a friend of Thomas Jefferson and Benjamin Franklin, and the pastor of a congregation at Northumberland where he had settled in 1794.[2] The lease agreement with Joseph Priestley, Jr. was for 145 acres of choice land at the Forks (of the Loyalsock Creek) for $2.50 an acre for a period of five years without paying either rent or interest.[3] At the end of the five years Samuel Rogers (1) formally purchased the land from Joseph and Eliza Priestley by deed dated August 15, 1807. The legal description of the land is typical of such transactions in the 1700's and early 1800's referencing trees, stone heaps, posts and the middle of a creek. Samuel (1) cleared the land and built a cabin with the help of his 16-year old son, Jonathan, and moved his family into the cabin in the spring of 1802. The original house was located below what is now the Forksville Cemetery and was the first dwelling in the community that would later become the town of Forksville.

Although Samuel (1) apparently did not pursue the milling and weaving industry after emigration, he did deed land to his sons, Samuel (2), Jonathan and William, on the Loyalsock Creek for the purpose of building a woolen mill. The deed for this transaction was dated June 22, 1810 between “Samuel Rogers of the township of Shrewsbury in the county of Lycoming in the state of Pennsylvania and Ann his wife of the one part and Samuel Rogers, Jr., Jonathan Rogers and William Rogers of Mill Creek Hundred, Newcastle County, State of Delaware of the other part.” The three “boys” paid their father $40 for this tract of land which was “part or parcel of a tract of land conveyed by Joseph Priestley and wife of the town and county of Samuel Rogers (1) by Indenture on the 15th day of August 1807, recorded in Book F, page 243, Recording of Deeds office, County of Lycoming. In this deed Samuel (1) reserved for himself the right of a road and ferry directly across the creek from his dwelling house. The Rogers brothers first erected a saw-mill, constructed a dam and then built the first woolen factory in that part of the country on their newly purchased parcel of land. This mill and factory provided employment for the English settlers and established communications with other nearby settlements on the route to Philadelphia.


Imagine, if you will, the pioneering experience of our Rogers in this yet untamed, virgin land–a land where there were yet no bridges to cross the many creeks, no stores, no churches, no mills, and, of course, no woolen factory. Before the first roads, settlers often traveled on the Loyalsock by canoe to visit their neighbors. The first roads were wagon trails. One of the early Loyalsock settlers, Samuel Wallis, built a pack horse road in 1793 known as the Corson Road to transport supplies to the first surveyors along the Loyalsock. This road started at Muncy, climbed to the summit of the Allegheny Mountains and then to the Loyalsock at Hillsgrove and up the Loyalsock to the Forks. Other roads in that early time frame were named for the settlers who carved out the first trails such as Hill’s Road, French Road and “Road to Eldred’s.” The roads connected the various settlements to taverns, grist mills, saw mills and distilleries. The first significant road into the area was the Gennessee Road between Muncy and Monroeton which connected central Pennsylvania to the Gennessee River. By 1806 the Susquehanna and Tioga Turnpike was under construction which connected with the Gennessee Road. Another road of particular interest to this family history was a road built in 1810 from Forksville to the Edkin Farm on Muncy Creek. It is this road that the Rogers brothers traveled by horse, wagon and sled to transport goods and supplies from Philadelphia to build their woolen factory at Forksville.[4]


The Baptist Church known as the “Little Muncy Baptist Church” was organized in 1817 and formally established October 7, 1822. The original members included “Samuel Rogers (1) and Nancy Guant, (sic) his wife, Richard Rogers and Harriet Stanley, his wife, and Gittyann Rogers and Isaac Rogers.”[5] This same source claims that Samuel Rogers was a Baptist when he emigrated from England. This is probably true since the family was active in that denomination. It should be noted that Samuel Rogers (1) and Ann Gaunt, however, were married in the Church of England so it is unknown when they switched denominational loyalties.          

Ann Gaunt Rogers died May 24, 1823 and Samuel (1) died January 29, 1828. Samuel’s obituary reads: "Samuel Rogers, died on the 29th ult., after a lengthy illness, at the Forks of Loyalsock Creek. On the following day a funeral sermon was delivered upon the occasion by Rev. Clark, after which his remains were interred in the family burying ground at that place. He, during the latter period of his life, held the responsible station of Deacon of the Forks of Loyalsock Particular Baptist Church."[6]

Rogers Family Grave Marker
Fairmount Cemetery
Forksville, PA

Copyright (c) 2005 Robert Sweeney and Inndividual Contributors to the Sullivan County Genealogical Web Page. All rights reserved. Used by permission of the owners.


Fairmount Cemetery
Forksville, PA

Copyright (c) 2005 Robert Sweeney and Inndividual Contributors to the Sullivan County Genealogical Web Page. All rights reserved. Used by permission of the owners.

Frontier Adventures


J. M. M. Gernerd, editor of The Now and Then, interviewed Richard Rogers (son of Samuel I) in 1874 when Richard was 83 years old. Gernerd captured some of Richard’s memories and escapades as a child growing up in the wilds of the virgin Pennsylvania forests. Richard’s stories of encounters with wild animals give us a vivid picture of just how dangerous life could be on the frontier. Three of Richard’s adventures are noted below:


He (Richard) related with great minuteness how he went out one morning on the flat below the Forks to bring in the oxen, with his rifle on his shoulder, as was then the common custom, when leaving the house, and had a most terrific encounter with a deer. He said he found a large doe with the cattle and shot her. Just as he fired she slightly changed her position, in consequence of which the ball merely stunned her. When he went to bleed her she was almost instantly on her feet again, and attacked him with great fury. He undertook to hold her, but her strength surprised him. The combatants now rolled over each other, back and forth, in the savage struggle for life. She fought him until, as he said, his “shirt was torn into ribbons,” and he was “almost naked.” When he at last succeeded in using his knife, he was himself so nearly exhausted that he was for some minutes hardly able to move.


Once he killed a wolf on the same flat below the Forks with a hemlock knot. He said he was driving some young cattle through the woods, along the creek, when the wolf jumped from behind a tree and started for the stream. He managed to get between the animal and the creek, and just as it raised to attack him, with bristles up and mouth open ready to bite, he struck for its head. Overreaching his mark, he hit it a stunning blow on the back, but before the enraged beast could recover, he dispatched it with a blow on the head.


When nearly grown up Richard went one day with several of his younger brothers to inspect a bear trap that they had set several miles away in the forest. On returning it began gradually to grow strangely and unaccountably dark. He said “a queer feeling” came creeping over them. They saw a flock of seventeen deer; the nimble-footed creatures did not seem anxious to get away, but appeared to be, as they were themselves, strangely disconcerted. The boys stopped at a corn field some distance from the house to do some hoeing, but the mysterious darkness continued to increase, and they could not work. The younger brothers began to cry. Richard now said, “Come, boys, I guess we might as well go home,” with all the apathy he could muster, but secretly he himself was no less strangely affected. They went home and were soon comforted. The darkness was caused by a total eclipse of the sun.[7]


Eighteen years after the above interview (and 90 years after settlement of the area), J. M. M. Gernerd was still writing about the life and customs of these Pennsylvania pioneers. Let’s enjoy a bit more of Mr. Gernerd’s engaging writing style:


Here and there a rude log cabin stood in the midst of a little clearing, the beginnings of a civilization that would amaze the early foresters could they wake up from their long sleep and see what changes ninety years have wrought. Chopping down trees, burning brush, grubbing out roots and stumps, splitting rails, making fences and providing for the immediate necessities of their families was about all that the first settlers could for some years think of doing. Adventures with wild animals were of frequent occurrence and sometimes of a perilous and exciting nature.


An interesting chapter might be written on the habits and custom of these primitive times. Then the women kept house without stoves. The cooking was done in fireplaces; the baking in iron bake-kettles, or in stone bake-ovens. Then “johnny cakes” and other dishes were baked in long-handled frying-pans, and in long-legged spiders. Then fire was produced with flint, steel and punk, as matches were not yet invented. The pitch-pine splinters and knots were used for candles. Then the sweeping was done with splint brooms made of hickory saplings. Then the boys wore “yellow muslin galluses,” and both boys and girls went barefooted the greater part of the year. Then most of the hats worn were made of straw, or woolen cloth, knit yarn or coon skins. Then, browned corn, rye, chestnuts, peas and beech-nuts were common substitutes for coffee. Then, the fat of bears and raccoons was used to fry doughnuts and for shortening. Then nearly everything–farming, cooking, dressing, visiting, entertaining, doctoring, burying the dead, even courting and marrying–was done differently from the way such things are done today.[8]


Generation 6: Samuel Rogers (2) and Mary Akroyd

Samuel Rogers (2) was born at Bramley, three miles west of Leeds, Yorkshire, England on December 6, 1782 and christened on December 25, 1782. His birth date was taken from his family Bible, and the christening date is from parish records researched by Mr. D. H. Barron of Yorkshire.[9]

Samuel (2) emigrated from England in 1800, one year before the emigration of his parents and siblings. He arrived at the Port of Philadelphia on the ship Molly from Liverpool, England, Nathaniel Calvert, Master, on October 4,1800.[10] At the age of 18, Samuel apparently was already quite an enterprising young man. He found employment in Philadelphia, and in May of 1801 rented 103 acres from William Parkinson in Blockley Township, Philadelphia County “the greater part of Mill Creek Farm.”[11] This piece of property had well-constructed buildings and established fruit trees. It must have been a very welcome sight to his parents and siblings who arrived in the summer of 1801 after their nearly 3-month sea voyage.

Samuel (2) married his first cousin, Mary Akroyd, on March 13, 1808 at Christiana, New Castle County, Delaware[12] where he and his brothers had been operating a woolen factory at Mill Creek Hundred, New Castle County for several years. Ten children were born to Samuel (2) and Mary:

Hannah born and died in 1810 in Delaware

Mary born 1811 in Delaware or Pennsylvania married John Woodley and died in 1872 in Columbia County, Wisconsin

Margaret born 1813 married Amasa Benjamin Winchell and died 1880 in Franklin County, Iowa

Jacob born 1815 married Almira Santee and died 1870 in Reynolds County, Missouri

Samuel (3) the direct-line ancestor born 1817 married Elizabeth Harding

Elizabeth born 1820 married William VanDyke and died 1875 in Reynolds County, Missouri

Richard Gaunt born 1822 married Mary Bly and died 1874 in Lycoming County, Pennsylvania

Jeremiah Akroyd born 1826 married Phebe Salmon and died 1877 in White Pigeon, Michigan

John born 1828 and died in 1828 in Lycoming County, Pennsylvania

George born 1829 and died in 1847 in Centre County, Pennsylvania

By 1810 Samuel (2) had moved from Delaware to Lycoming County, Pennsylvania and built a woolen mill, a dam and sawmill at the Forks of the Loyalsock Creek. It isn’t clear just when Samuel moved his family from Delaware–certainly not until he had built a house for them; thus the confusion as to whether Mary was born in Delaware or Pennsylvania. The woolen mill was built near the abutment of the covered bridge at Forksville. Seven houses were also constructed for the Rogers families and employees. Jonathan and William remained in Delaware until they were able to close the business there in 1813 and then rejoin Samuel (2) at the new plant on the Loyalsock.[13]

During the War of 1812 the Rogers brothers had lucrative government contracts to supply Kersey cloth for the army uniforms as previously noted. To expand on this story, it is reported that they had used several teams to transport their fabrics to Philadelphia and bring back raw material and merchandise–a six-weeks round trip. Brothers Richard and David were the chief teamsters and were on the road both winter and summer. They each had a heavy Canistoga wagon with a team of eight horses. There were few bridges on the creeks and rivers that had to be crossed and none at all on the Loyalsock. Between Hillsgrove and Forksville, a distance of nine miles, they had to ford the Loyalsock Creek 16 times. The horses were never blanketed and seldom enjoyed the luxury of a stable. We might assume that living conditions for Richard and David while on the road were not much better than that of their horses.

In 1816 the Rogers’ sawmill and factory were swept away by a ravaging flood of the Loyalsock Creek. This flood was so devastating that the only remnant ever found was a large dye kettle used for dyeing the blue Kersey cloth. It was discovered several months after the flood in a deep hole about a mile below the Forks which became known as the “Dye Kettle Hole.” The old dye kettle itself was hauled by oxen teams to the new woolen factory below Forksville.[14] Today it is housed at the Sullivan County Historical Museum in Laporte, Pennsylvania.

In 1817 Samuel (2) and Jonathan bought property on Muncy Creek near the borough of Muncy in Lycoming County, Pennsylvania where the enterprising brothers built a frame building to house a new woolen factory. They also built a grist mill, plaster mill and sawmill all of which were operated in connection with the woolen mill.[15] In 1826 the woolen mill was destroyed by fire. After this disaster Samuel (2) and Jonathan dissolved their business relations, and Samuel bought out Jonathan's interest. Jonathan returned to the Forks where he established another woolen factory that same year. He operated that factory until his death in 1830.

After the fire, Samuel (2) immediately turned his attention to building an even larger, 3-story woolen factory on Muncy Creek, this time of brick. The Muncy Mills consisted of a corn, plaster and sawmill as well as the cloth factory. He was engaged in that operation from about 1827 until 1840.

Samuel suffered his most devastating loss on December 17, 1836 with the death of his wife, Mary. She had punctured her wrist with the tongue of a Jew’s harp. Although the wound itself was seemingly minor, it apparently became infected and resulted in her death.[16]


Samuel Rogers

Photo Courtesy of Mavis Rogers

In 1841 Samuel (2) moved to Hightown in Union County, Pennsylvania where he managed and operated the White Deer Woolen Mills for about five years.[17] A news clipping, dated September 27, 1845 from an unidentified newspaper, notes “a fire at Samuel Rogers woolen factory at the mouth of White Deer Creek totally consumed the factory. The machinery was insured by Lycoming County Mutual in the amount of $1800.” I can find no other record of this second fire, but the account in the newspaper is most likely correct and would account for Samuel (2)’s move to Brier Creek, Columbia County, Pennsylvania in 1846. There he leased a woolen mill with his sons, Richard G. and Jeremiah A., and continued the business for another eight years until his retirement in 1854. He returned to his farm at Carpenter’s Run in Muncy Township, Lycoming County, Pennsylvania where he owned 1800 acres of timberland on Bear Creek. At the east and south branch junction of this creek, Samuel’s sons, Richard and Jeremiah, built a woolen mill in 1854. Richard’s sons, George, Samuel and Judson, continued that business through another generation of woolen mill workers.

Although most of the literature review about Samuel (2) deals with his woolen mill endeavors, there are also references that give us clues about his other interests and his personality. Several sources refer to him as a highly esteemed citizen. It was also noted that he was a close observer, thoughtful, kind-hearted, and possessed good judgment.[18] He had a massive frame, but it was his social abilities that commanded respect and attention. He was the originator and one of the first directors of the Lycoming Mutual Fire Insurance Company, an institution organized in 1840. In a few years it had developed into one of the foremost mutual fire insurance companies in the whole country. After Samuel’s personal experience with fire loss, it is hardly surprising that he would be the director of a fire insurance company.

Samuel Rogers, (assume this to be Samuel, Jr. rather than Samuel, Sr.) along with Powell Bird and a William King, played a major role in the establishment of the first school in Lycoming/Sullivan County.[19] These three were district trustees in 1816 when widow Sarah Huckell conveyed a small plot of land at Forksville for a schoolhouse. A July 4th celebration was held by the local settlers to begin clearing the land, and the school was officially opened on December 1, 1816.[20] Moses Rogers, Samuel (2)’s youngest brother at the age of 10, made biographical history as the bearer of water to the school construction workers.[21]

Samuel (2) was a member of the Baptist Church as were most of the other English families on the Loyalsock. He was one of the chief organizers of the First Baptist Church established at Muncy Creek. Although it appears he had been a Baptist all of his life, he was not baptized into the church until April 25, 1823 at the Rogers’ factory at Muncy. Samuel is credited with organizing the first Sunday School in the Muncy Valley and frequently served as moderator of the Northumberland Baptist Association.[22]

A story that surely adds some colorful threads to Samuel’s biography follows:

He (Samuel) was often applied to by acquaintances for advice in business matters, and sometimes in the event of domestic trouble. In case of family feuds he was shy, however, it is said in giving counsel. He once had a disagreeable experience as a domiciliary peace-maker. When a young man, on the way with his family to locate on the Loyalsock, while stopping at some settlement for rest and refreshment, he came to the house of a married couple who were engaged in actual hostilities. The weaker vessel seemed to be suffering the most damage, and was apparently worthy of the most sympathy. He kindly advocated peace. Finding kind words ineffectual, he finally felt obliged to protect her by taking her liege lord by the neck. The result was that the woman instantly turned on him in defense of her husband, and the combative twain fell upon him and gave him a fearful thrashing. Such vigorous reproof, he said, was enough to last him his life-time.[23]

The 1850 Lycoming County census shows Samuel (2) living in the home of his son-in-law, William Vandyke, and daughter Elizabeth. Samuel died of apoplexy on February 7, 1857 at the home of his son, Jeremiah, in Plunkets Creek Township, Lycoming County, Pennsylvania. He was buried in the Emanuel Church graveyard, Muncy Creek Township, but later both his and his wife’s remains were buried in the Muncy Cemetery, Muncy, Pennsylvania.

Samuel left a will dated February 10, 1849 and proved February 13, 1857. By mid-1800 standards, he was quite a wealthy man. Excerpts and abstracts from his will that might be of interest include:

_bequeath to my son Jacob Rogers all my real estate on the east branch of the Loyalsock Creek where John R. Riley now lives

_bequeath to my son Samuel all that track (sic) of land and appurtenances thereon that William Rogers and widow Bryan now occupy (plus several other tracts to Samuel)

_bequeath to my sons Richard G. Rogers and Jeremiah A. Rogers the remainder of this farm I now reside on which is not sold to them by article with all the appurtenances and two undivided third of the two additional tracks (sic)

_bequeath to my daughter Elizabeth Ann Van Dyke all of my Track (sic) of land Warrantee Peter Beck Jr. situated in Plunkets Creek Township, Lycoming County with all the appurtenances thereon which is now leased to John Davis.

_Samuel Rogers Jr. is to pay to Mary Woodley my daughter three hundred dollars

_daughter Margaret Winchell to receive $150 after four years plus $50 in bank notes

_E. A. Van Dyke $650 one year after my departing this life[24]

Samuel and Mary’s children, who were not listed in Samuel’s will, had all died before 1849.

River Rafting

Attempts to capture the entrepreneurship of the industrious Rogers have been feeble ones at best. In absence of oral history dating this many generations back, I have relied heavily on the existing published works. Fred M. Rogers, great grandson of Samuel (1) and Ann Gaunt Rogers, was the author of an article, “Rafting Days on the Loyalsock” that details the technical aspects and hazards of river rafting.  The Loyalsock Creek was actually a small river with two main branches (Little Loyalsock and Big Loyalsock) which drained parts of current Bradford, Lycoming and Sullivan counties, it apparently was always called a creek. The Loyalsock flaunted bars, narrow channels and sharp right angle turns as it rushed through narrow mountain canyons on its way to the Susquehanna River at Mountoursville. The Creek required “grit, courage, manliness, plenty of good active brain cells and quick insights”[25] to survive the watery excursion from the sawmills to market.

In the abstract that follows, Fred often references a Rogers. This Rogers remains the mystery man in his story. He does specifically name John W. Rogers (his father) as well as Moses Rogers, Reuben Rogers, Jonathan Rogers, S. S. Rogers, Thomas Rogers, Joseph Rogers, and John W. Rogers as raftmen on the Loyalsock and the Susquehanna River. It seems that many, if not most, of our Lycoming/Sullivan Rogers male ancestors were skilled boaters, rafters and raft pilots. Let’s join them now and see if we can stay afloat:

The construction of the rafts was no easy task as they had to be built of sufficient strength to withstand the wrenching and rough going on the course of the Loyalsock. The ordinary raft was from eighty to one hundred feet in length–sixteen feet in width and one and a half feet in depth and it was pinned and boomed for a rough voyage on the Loyalsock and the River. The raft was manned by a first and second steersman and a first and second pilot; and was run with oars at the front and rear ends. These oars were stems, about twenty feet long, usually made from small hemlock trees, seasoned; to each was spiked a tapering plank from fourteen to sixteen feet long, the oar being balanced so as to work to the best advantage.

After the rafts were in shape to move, the cabin had to be furnished with sleeping and cooking equipment and provisioned. The raftmen were good feeders and demanded good sleeping quarters as they were very active, often starting from the mouth of the Loyalsock at Montoursville at 2:00 a.m. hiking to near Forksville and returning on a raft to Montoursville on the same day (a distance of about 32 miles from Mountoursville to Forksville).

In early times the raftmen depended on the spring rains and snow for the water on which to run their rafts, but later on, when the water was not high enough to run them on the natural rafting water, they used the water stored by the splash dam about four miles below Forksville. Two splashes could be used for rafting purposes daily. Each splash would raise the water on the Loyalsock about three feet, and the rafts running on the splashes could reach the landing at Montoursville twice each day.

The rafts were often loaded with lumber, five thousand feet to the raft, and in such cases a raft would contain about thirty thousand feet of lumber. Sometimes they would join their rafts when they reached the river and run them as a fleet, separating them when they came to the river dams and running them as sleds.

On boarding a raft on the Little Loyalsock above Forksville, at Millview, you would soon learn that the Little Loyalsock is not the rough roaring stream that you find the Big Loyalsock is. Once on the latter, however, the excitement begins as you are soon at the Gulf, a sharp, rocky turn in the stream; then a short, rapid run brings you to the Dye Kettle, another sharp rock turn. Here the dye kettle, now at the Rogers’ homestead, was pulled from a deep hole and again used for years at the woolen factory...The old Cape Dam site is soon passed and you are headed straight for the rocks in one of the sharpest right-angle turns on the Loyalsock, which is commonly known as Figgles Turn (English dialect for fidgets), and the Turn is rightly named as it gives the raftmen the figgles when they face it on a raft with an excitable pilot. It was in this Turn that the writer (Fred M. Rogers) nearly succumbed to the figgles when the pilot put the raft straight into the rocks. The front end of the raft attempted to climb the rocks and succeeded in doing so for some thirty feet up; and the middle of the raft sank beneath the water up to my ears and the rear of the raft ran out of the stream onto dry land. Rogers stuck to the ship up to his ears in April ice water, but was not excited; John W. Rogers shouted to Rogers to take to the mountain. Then the raft slid off the rocks and the middle of the raft came to the surface with Rogers still hanging on. The front end swung about into deep water and then pulled the rear end from the dry land. Then the raft was boarded by the steersmen and pilot who had put the raft into the hill and rocks, all of whom had deserted the ship a few moments before. Rogers received plenty of excitement–a good wetting in real ice water–and was none the worse for the experience. But he was never caught on any other raft with that pilot again.

The excitement and kick which the raftmen received when running the Loyalsock was what they liked and what they never forgot. Many of them turned back when they had finished running the rafts to Montoursville as river rafting was not as interesting and exciting as rafting on the Loyalsock. Other men in such cases took the rafts down the Susquehanna.

The log floaters made rafting very dangerous for the raftmen after they began their drives on the Big and Little Loyalsock about the year 1870. They continued to drive logs on the two Loyalsocks for 20 years and until the greater part of the hemlock was taken from the upper Loyalsock and its tributaries. The logs were usually stocked during the fall and winter by men with teams or by use of log slides and rollways down the mountains and through the gorges to points on the banks of the streams. This “stocking” was a hard and risky business. Few men were able to make any profit on their jobs. The expense of cutting and stocking the logs was often more than the first cost of the logs in the woods and driving them to the mouth of the Loyalsock was a body killer. As for the men employed in floating the logs, few reached their homes with any of the hard earned cash that they received when they finished their drives.

Some of the raftmen who did not know the river secured the services of regular river steersmen and pilots, but most of the Loyalsock raftmen, who were the leading men in the business, ran their own rafts on the river.[26]

Fred M. Rogers wore many hats besides those of author and raftman. He was a teacher, an attorney and a housing developer at Forksville. He was also very involved in the community life of Forksville as a civic leader and organizer and was an active member of the Methodist Church.[27]

I hope you enjoyed the raft excursion down the Loyalsock and didn’t fall in the creek more than a time or two. This story just had to be included because my great grandfather, Jeremiah “Jerry” Rogers, was a skilled river rafter and log floater on the rivers of Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa and South Dakota as the family moved westward. Jeremiah’s father, Samuel (3), likely learned the ways of the river on the Loyalsock as he spent the first 30 years of his life in Lycoming County before moving to Wisconsin.

Civil War Heroes and Casualties

Before we follow the Rogers farther west in the next chapter, let’s take a moment to honor our Rogers kin who served in the Civil War, some of whom gave their all.

Corporal William Rogers, son of Moses and Jane (Sadler) Rogers, was killed on May 12, 1864 at Spotsylvania Court House, Virginia and was buried at the Wilderness Burial Grounds. William served in K Company 141st PA Infantry.[28]

Thomas Winchell, Samuel (2)’s grandson through his daughter Margaret Winchell, served in the 10th Wisconsin Volunteer Infantry and in the 38th Wisconsin. At the siege of Petersburg he received a lieutenant’s commission in Co. C., 10th Wisconsin and when mustered out in June 1866, he was adjutant of the regiment. Thomas’ brother, Clinton, also of the 38th Wisconsin was badly wounded at Petersburg.

Richard G. Rogers, son of Samuel Rogers (2), had two sons who served in the war from Pennsylvania: Jeremiah of the 112th P.V. Infantry who died in the prison camp at Andersonville, Georgia; and Judson K. Rogers who survived the war.

Sarah Rogers Bryan, daughter of Jonathan Rogers, had five sons who served in the war, and two of them were killed: Lt. William Bryan, 106th P.V., fell at Antietam; Jonathan 2d Wisconsin Infantry, fell at Gettysburg. Two other sons, Major Samuel Bryan, 84th P.V., was twice severely wounded, and David M. Bryan also of the 84th P.V. lost a leg in the battle of Fredericksburg. Only Ellis L. Bryan, 106th P.V. escaped injury.

William Rogers, son of Jonathan Rogers, had two sons who served in the Civil War, one of whom (J. Horace Rogers) died of disease contracted in the field after his discharge.[29]

This is only a sampling of the many Rogers descendants who served, were wounded or  died in the Civil War.

On this gloomy note, we invite readers to climb aboard the old covered wagon and accompany Samuel Rogers (3) and Elizabeth Harding and their descendants on the westward migration trek into Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa and South Dakota.



[1]The Now and Then, (hereafter The Now and Then) May-June, 1892, pp. 228, 229.

[2]T. Kenneth Wood, M.D., Ed. “Journal of an English Emigrant Farmer,” Now and Then: A Quarterly Magazine of History and Biography Founded in 1868 Devoted to North-Central Pennsylvania, Vol. 5, p. 157, The Williamsport Printing and Binding Co., Williamsport, PA, 1936, (repository: The PA State College Library).

[3] The Now and Then, p. 229.

[4]The history of the early roads is abstracted from Fred M. Rogers, "The Early English Settlers on the Loyalsock," cited in Lycoming County Historical Society Journal, No. 8, 1933, p. 57.

[5]The Now and Then, p. 238. Note: Nancy Guant should be Ann Gaunt.

[6]Lycoming Gazette, 13 February 1828.

[7]The Now and Then, pp. 232‑233.

[8]The Now and Then, pp. 239, 240.

[9]Note: The incongruity of Samuel’s birth one month before his parents’ marriage raises the possibility of an error in the marriage date or Samuel’s birth date.

[10]Michael H. Tepper, Passenger Arrivals at the Port of Philadelphia 1800‑1819, (Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc., 1986), p. 615, (Samuel Rogers, “”Molly” 4 Oct. 1800).

[11]The Now and Then, p. 228.

[12]Marriage Certificate ‑ Samuel Rogers & Mary Akroyd, marriage performed by Wm. Rogers, D.D., Sunday evening, 13th day of March, 1808; (copy of this document distributed to Rogers genealogists by Myron Northrup).

[13]William Henry Egle, Notes and Queries of Pennsylvania, 1700s-1800s, Fourth Series Vol. II, p. 197, printed from FamilyTreeMaker, CD 19 ©

[14]Fred M. Rogers, "The Early English Settlers on the Loyalsock," cited in Lycoming County Historical Society Journal, No. 8, 1933, p. 66.

[15]The Now and Then, p. 235.

[16]The Now and Then, p. 235.

[17]Lycoming Lineage, Vol. XVL No. 6, November/December 1999, p. 125.

[18]The Now and Then, p. 235.

[19]Sullivan County was carved from Lycoming County in 1847.

[20]William Henry Egle, Notes and Queries of Pennsylvania, 1700s-1800s, Fourth Series Vol. II, p. 190, printed from Family Tree Maker, CD 19 ©


[22]The Now and Then, p. 236.


[24]Probate Records, (Lycoming County Courthouse, Williamsport, PA), dated February 13, 1857, executors, Dr. James Rankin of Muncy, PA, Richard G. Rogers and Jeremiah A. Rogers of Briar Creek Twp., Columbia, PA.

[25]Fred M. Rogers, “Rafting Days on the Loyalsock,” Lycoming Historical Society Proceedings and Papers, No. 8, Williamsport, Pennsylvania, 1933, (hereafter Rafting Days) as posted on Sullivan County, Pennsylvania Genealogy Project, part of the PA GenWeb and hosted by RootsWeb, copyright © 2004 Robert E. Sweeney, all rights reserved, used by permission of the owners.

[26]Rafting Days.”

[27]“Scrapbook of Eliza Green Rogers” link to “The Rogers and Warren Family Photos,” as posted on Sullivan County, Pennsylvania Genealogy Project, part of the PA GenWeb and hosted by RootsWeb, copyright © 2004 Robert E. Sweeney and Individual Contributors, all rights reserved, used with permission of the owners.

[28]“Letters to Isaac Rogers from Soldiers in the Civil War” as posted on Sullivan County, Pennsylvania Genealogy Project, part of the PA GenWeb and hosted by RootsWeb, copyright © 2004 Robert E. Sweeney and Individual Contributors, all rights reserved, used with permission of the owners.

[29]The Now and Then, pp. 238, 239. Note: this source includes a number of other Rogers Civil War soldiers not listed above.



Chapter 3






Pioneering Rogers: Westward Migration


Why did most of the descendants of Samuel Rogers (1) migrate out of central Pennsylvania within a few decades of landing on American shores? The search for greener pastures certainly was a westward pull factor for many, if not most, of the “covered wagon” settlers. The Homestead Act of 1862 offering 160 acres of public domain land to any United States citizen who was 21 years of age and head of a family was a major catalyst of westward migration. But let’s run this question by Myron Northrop, a Rogers genealogist who laid the groundwork for the Rogers ancestry in the 1970's.[1] Myron apparently was often asked why the Rogers went west and why they abandoned the woolen industry. He answered these questions in a letter written to his cousin, Richard “Dick” Samuel Rogers, of Eugene, Oregon on August 15, 1978. This letter is particularly valuable because it references the migration pattern of the children of Samuel Rogers (2) both before and after his death. Several paragraphs from this lengthy letter follow with explanations in parentheses:


Dear Dick, I was pleased to receive your letter of August 9 with enclosures of photocopies of Fred M. Rogers letter of April 4th, 1935 and Molly Wheat’s letter of June 1, 1952. These letters show how some members of the family were trying to keep in touch with each other and gather genealogical records many years ago. I agree with you that your father went west where the “grass is greener.” (Richard “Dick” Rogers’ father was also named Richard Samuel Rogers and had migrated from Wisconsin to Oregon around 1920.) In Columbia County, Wisconsin in 1850 you have the Winchells (Margaret Rogers Winchell was daughter of Samuel 2); your great grandfather Samuel (3), and the Woodleys (Mary Rogers Woodley was daughter of Samuel 2); and in Adams County that corners on Columbia County my grandfather Jacob. This accounts for four of the seven children of Samuel (2) in 1850. Other 1850 census enclosed shows that the VanDykes were living with Samuel (2) in the home place in Lycoming County while Richard G. (Gaunt) and family, including brother Jeremiah, were running a woolen mill in Columbia County, Pennsylvania, town of Briar Creek. Brother Jeremiah was not yet married.


Brother Jeremiah, son of Samuel (2), did marry in Briar Creek, and this young couple also migrated west–to White Cloud, Michigan where he had a sawmill.


Sister Elizabeth and her husband, William VanDyke, also came west after the death of father Samuel (2). See the 1870 census enclosed for Barnesville, Missouri. In the census for Ironton, Missouri you will note that my grandfather Jacob is not listed. He and family had moved from Montour, Iowa to be near the Winchells and again go into the lumber business. Shortly after moving to Missouri, my grandfather died of pneumonia, leaving my grandmother with five young children to raise–my mother being the youngest–2 years old!


So, great uncle Richard Gaunt Rogers was the only child who lived to maturity of Samuel (2) who stayed in Pennsylvania and in the woolen business. His sons continued in the woolen business.


This has been a “long winded” explanation of the migrations of Samuel 2's children so you won’t have the feeling that your great grandfather Samuel (3) was the only one who gave up the woolen business. S/ Myron


Generation 7: Samuel Rogers and Elizabeth Harding                                         


Samuel Rogers (3) born December 15, 1817 in Muncy, Lycoming County, Pennsylvania, now carries on the direct-line descendancy for some of you readers. He married Elizabeth Harding, daughter of James Harding and Sarah Warren Harding on December 2, 1840 in Lycoming County. (Harding and Warren biographies are narrated in chapter 4.) Samuel and Elizabeth were the parents of Mary born 1842, George born 1843, and James born 1845 all in Lycoming County, Pennsylvania; Emaline born 1847 in Wisconsin, Jeremiah Akroyd born 1849 at Muncy, Lycoming County, Pennsylvania, Sarah born 1852 in Juneau County, Wisconsin; Samuel born 1854 in Vernon County, Wisconsin; and William born 1861 in Juneau County, Wisconsin.


The U. S. federal census trail for Samuel and Elizabeth includes:

1850 Columbia County, Wisconsin

Westpoint Twp., 715/715, Samuel Rogers 33 farmer born PA, Elizabeth 30 born PA, May E. 8 born PA, George H. 7 born PA, James P. 5 born PA, Emiline 3 born WI, Jeremiah 2 born PA

1860 Juneau County, Wisconsin

Kildare, 1034/925, Samuel Rogers 42 farmer $1000 value of real estate born PA, Elizabeth 40 born PA, James 15 born WI, Emeline 13 born WI, Jeremiah 11 born PA, Samuel 5 born WI

1870 Vernon County, Wisconsin

Town of Sterling, Post Office West Prairie, Samuel Rogers 51 lumberman $1500 value of real estate born PA, Elizabeth 49 keeping house born PA, James 25 sawmill operator born PA, Emeline 23 domestic servant born WI, Jeremiah 21 farm laborer born PA, Samuel 15 born WI William 7 born WI, Mary Wesley 6 born MN, Nelson Emmons 30 day laborer born PA

Note: Emeline Rogers married the boarder Nelson Emmons on June 12, 1870 one day after this census was taken.

1880 Vernon County, Wisconsin

Town of Sterling, Elizabeth 60 born PA, S.R. Rogers farm hand son 25 born WI, W. G. Rogers farm hand son 18 born WI


Birth places of the children on the census indicate this family was on the move during a 20 year period from Lycoming County, Pennsylvania to Wisconsin where Emeline was born in 1847 and then back to Pennsylvania by 1849 where my ancestor Jeremiah Akroyd was born in Lycoming County and then again to Wisconsin. In 1850 Samuel was farming in Westpoint Township, Columbia County, Wisconsin. (In this census Samuel (3) was a neighbor of Thomas Molyneux whose deceased wife, Hannah Rogers Molyneux, was Samuel’s aunt.) It appears the family then moved to Juneau County, Wisconsin where Sarah was born and died in 1852. By 1854 Samuel had moved on to Vernon County, Wisconsin if birth place information is correct for Samuel Richard Rogers (4).


In 1860 Samuel (3) was in Juneau County, Wisconsin where he owned land valued at $1,000 and was farming. By 1870 he was living in the town of Sterling, Vernon County, Wisconsin and working as a lumberman. In 1880 Elizabeth was still living in the town of Sterling with the two youngest sons, Samuel (4) and William, and she was boarding a school teacher.  Samuel’s whereabouts in the 1880 census is unknown.  


On October 28, 1875 from Sterling, Vernon County, Wisconsin, Samuel wrote a letter to his sister, Margaret Winchell, and her husband, A. B. Winchell. Margaret and Amasa were probably living in Iowa where Margaret died in 1880, but this letter does not give that information. The spelling is so poor that my first impulse was to grab my red correction pen or retype it correctly. I did neither. Instead I humbly typed the letter verbatim (with a few blanks that I couldn’t decipher) with a deep appreciation for my great great grandfather who, with limited education, eked out a living from the land and rivers and raised children who became hard-working, productive citizens.


My Dear Sistter Margret Winchell & Brouther A B Winchell         Whee Recivd your Kind letter of the 14 ints in Due time of the sad inteligence of the Death of our Dear Sister E A Vandicke it appears Dear Sister She is Done withe the trobles & triels of this van world_______ Sin whee ar all Reseible whell at present & hope By the Blesing of god thiss May find you & all of your Dear family enjoying the Same Blessing. I would like to Know verry much to hear how Harvey & his family & all the Rest of your Childrens familys are getting allong you say you whant me to tell whare our Daughter Emma lives She lives at the Grand Rappds Wood County Wisconsin Emmailine & Dear little familey is getting allong verry Nislley he husband is Dowing verry well at the guiler Bissiness his name is Nellson Emmons________our Son Jerramiah A Rogers what Marred abought a year aggo our Son J P Rogers is in Kanses going to Scooll Jerimiah & Samuel is runing a thrashing machine this fall I have sold two thirds of our plase to Jerimiah & Samuel toe years agoe

My Dear Sister you Speak of Ellizebeth & me coming to se you this whinter But I am Doutfull whe will not So Sittiutated as to come this year But it mabe possible another year I whas Down to Se Brouther Jerimiah in Michigan (St. Joseph) last Septtember a year ago I found his Elath (?) rather poor he as lost the yuse of one of his eys he whas in rather Depresed        The Woodleys familley ar all in ioway Escsept Samuel Woodley I Doee Sinserlley hope you will So Kind as to anser this line & plea to have the rest of the familley wright to us if thay will to enny of them (?) Our family they will anser you must eccuse Me for not ansering your letter       I thought you whant us Both to let you our ages My age is December 15th 1875 I will be 58 yeares old & Ellizebeth age 56 years old of January 11th 1876

Ellizebeth Jones (joins) me with love you all from you

Brouther Samuel Rogers


In an earlier letter to his sister, Margaret Winchell, dated December 22, 1872 from Sterling, Vernon County, Samuel (3) inquires about her family and asks her children to write to him. He also writes that Elizabeth has been to Pennsylvania to visit family and friends in the “old home country.” He mentions his brother, Jeremiah Rogers, was losing sight in one of his eyes. Samuel’s son, Jeremiah, was working in the woods and his son, James, was running the sawmill for him.


Land Records

The earliest land record from a thick Homestead file for Samuel Rogers (3) is a Pre-emption Homestead Affidavit, filed January 13, 1887 for Lots 3 and 4 and S1/2 of NW1/4 of Sec. 9, T100, R71 to homestead entry original No. 9206, Charles Mix County, Dakota Territory. On November 21, 1889, Samuel completed Homestead Affidavit for the above land in Charles Mix County. Improvements listed on this affidavit were a sod house, 13 x 16 feet, and 18 acres under cultivation valued at $100.00.[2]

On October 3, 1892, Samuel (3) filed the Intention to Make Final Proof form at Wheeler, South Dakota. Witnesses listed on this form were his neighbors–Jacob Barnett, Edgar Barnett, Andrew Johnson and Henry Ford. On November 19, 1892, Samuel completed the Homestead Proof–Testimony of Claimant form showing his age as 74 years, his address as Bijou Hills, Charles Mix County, South Dakota[3] and his birth place as Pennsylvania. He writes in answer to the question about date of actual residence, “In the fall of 1885 to January 10, 1887, good sod house, 12 x 15 feet, 130 rods of fence, good well and 18 acres of breaking; total value of said improvements, $175.00. Family consists of “myself and wife–I have resided continuously on this land since January 10, 1887. My wife lives with her son and refuses to live with me.” Jacob Barrett and Henry Ford also verify that the claimant lived alone on the property as his “aged and infirm wife prefers to live with her married son.”


Looking back 100 years later at this glimpse into the marriage of my great great grandparents, it seems most of my gender could muster up a little compassion for a 70+ year old, sick lady’s refusal to live in a 12 x 15 foot sod house on the prairie. There, of course, could have been other circumstances besides ill health and poor living conditions involved.  Regardless of the circumstances, such a stand in the1890's surely must have met with some degree of social disapproval.[4] The relatives left behind in Lycoming County, Pennsylvania probably were not aware of the marital discord and living arrangements of Samuel (3) and Elizabeth as a news item in The Now and Then reports, “He (Samuel) and his wife, Elizabeth Harding, celebrated their golden wedding in December 1890. They are living in Bijou Hills, South Dakota, and are said to be enjoying a healthy and vigorous old age.”[5]


Samuel (3) died on August 29, 1895 probably on his farm in Charles Mix County. A well-preserved gravestone marks his final resting place in the Union Cemetery, Bijou Hills, South Dakota.


In spite of Elizabeth’s apparent ill health, she lived to the age of 90 and died July 4, 1910 in St. Cloud, Minnesota. She was survived by Emmaline who died in 1916 in Grand Rapids, Wisconsin; James who died a missionary in India in 1923; Jerry who died in Charles Mix County, South Dakota in 1929; Will who died in Chehalis, Washington in 1932; and Samuel who died in Manor, Washington in 1834. The informant on her death certificate is S. R. Rogers of 1118 3rd (or 8th) Ave. S., St. Cloud, Minnesota. Elizabeth was probably living with her son, Samuel, at the time of her death. She is buried with her husband in the Union Cemetery at Bijou Hills, South Dakota.



Grave Site of Samuel
and Elizabeth Rogers
Union Cemetery, Bijou Hills,
South Dakota

Photo by Jean Rosenkranz


Elizabeth (Harding) Rogers and son, William "Will" Rogers
Photo courtesy of Mavis Rogers


Generation 8: Jeremiah Rogers and Martha Bennett


Jeremiah “Jerry” Akroyd Rogers, was born May 4, 1849 at Muncy, Lycoming County, Pennsylvania. Jeremiah was known by his nickname and will be referred to as Jerry in this narrative. His childhood years were spent with his family in Columbia, Juneau and Vernon Counties in southwestern Wisconsin. This was during the same time frame as Solomon and Lydia Bennett lived in Iowa County, Wisconsin also in southwestern Wisconsin. Although Iowa County does not border any of the counties where the Rogers lived, the geographic barrier apparently was not a huge obstacle to the romance between Jerry Rogers and Martha Bennett, daughter of Solomon and Lydia Thurber Bennett. The Rogers and Bennett families were related, and Jerry and Martha were third cousins. They married October 10, 1875 at Red Mount, Vernon County, Wisconsin. (Solomon Bennett’s ancestry is the subject of chapter 5, and Lydia Thurber’s ancestry is the subject of chapter 6.)


Jerry and Martha were parents of James born 1876 , George born 1877, and William born 1879 all in Wisconsin; Jeremiah, Jr. (Jay) born 1884 in Iowa; and Edna (this writer’s paternal grandmother) born 1888 and Paul born 1893 in Dakota Territory. Paul died in infancy. The biographies of the Rogers will, for the most part, end with the generation of Jerry and Martha.  The story of their son, Jay, will be the exception because his life lends insight into the history of the life and times of hardy pioneers of the South Dakota homestead era. The biography for their daughter, Edna Rogers, who married Earl Peterson, will be taken up in A Legacy of Courage, a book still in progress as of this writing.


Since Jerry was a lumberjack, the family almost always lived near a river. Their first three children were born in Wisconsin. In 1880 or 1881 Jerry moved the family to Panora, Guthrie County, Iowa on the Middle Raccoon River. By 1885 the family was living in Charles Mix County, Dakota Territory. That territorial census for enumeration district 127 lists the family as Jeremiah Rogers age 36, Martha 37, James 9, George 7, William 5, and Jerry Jr. age 1.


On April 2, 1885 Jerry formally applied for a homestead at the Mitchell Land Office for 160 acres at a cost of $1.25 per acre in Brule County, Dakota Territory.[6] Witnesses to the application were Fred Jones, David Miller, Charles C. Sower (spelling questionable), and John H. Richardson all of Bijou Hills, Dakota Territory. Other papers in the homestead file give the occupation date of the homestead as September 25, 1885.


Neighbor Fred Jones notes in the “testimony of witness” form that he can see Jeremiah’s house from his own house, and that he sees Jeremiah an average of once a month.  In answer to the statement, “Explain how you know he has resided there,” Fred Jones writes, “I see them there and seeing is believing.” Another neighbor, Charles Lowe, who also completed the “testimony of witness” form noted, “I see claimant perhaps an average of three times a week. He comes to the post office at Bijou Hills for his mail, and my house is about 1/4 miles from the post office. I also see him haul wood past my house. Sometimes I pass his house and see him at work on his farm.”


Jerry’s “testimony of claimant” form confirms that the family had lived in Guthrie County, Iowa before their move to Dakota Territory. His family consisted of his wife and four children. The improvements on this homestead were listed as a 20 x 30 frame house one story, shingle roof, a 14 x 24 foot cattle shed with pole sides and hay roof, a 14 x 23 stone stable with hay roof, 40 acres under cultivation and two good mules. Farm implements were a wagon, 2 plows, 2 harrows and other small articles; domestic animals were 5 horses, 2 cows, 4 yearlings, 6 hogs and 40 chickens. Furniture consisted of 2 beds, 1 stove, 1 bureau, 1 cupboard, 1 sewing machine, 8 chairs and “other articles too numerous to mention.” The crops were 20 acres of wheat, 5 acres of corn, 15 acres of flax in 1886 and 15 acres of wheat in 1887, 5 acres of flax, 10 acres of oats and 10 acres of corn. In answer to the statement, “Explain what you mean by actual continuous residence,” Jerry wrote, “I live, sleep and eat there.”


Jerry’s brothers, Samuel R. Rogers (4) and William G. Rogers, also homesteaded in Brule County, South Dakota.            On November 17, 1894 Jerry bought more land in Brule County, South Dakota.[7] Whether Jerry ever lived on that land or just farmed it is unclear.


The Rogers had a nomadic reputation which the paper trail seems to confirm. In 1900 they lived in Clark County, South Dakota per the federal census. This was some distance from their homestead in Brule County. Jerry, James, George and William were working as day laborers according to that census.


By 1905 the state census shows Jerry Rogers in Charles Mix County, LaRoche Township, post office Chandler. He was working as a herder as was 21-year old Jay. The only other child still at home was Edna working as a housekeeper. In 1909 Jerry homesteaded 80 acres in Charles Mix County, Patent #98931 dated December 23, 1909.[8] This parcel of land was on the northwest border of the county which joins Brule County opposite LaRoche Island (later renamed Colombe Island). The December 23, 1909 date appears to be the Final Proof date rather than application date on this land record so Jerry must have moved to Charles Mix County sometime before the 1905 census.


Oral history as preserved by several Rogers family historians adds some colorful threads to the Rogers saga. Following is an interview by Eldon “Bud” Rogers with Henry “Hank” Rogers (1916-2006).[9]


On the trail to South Dakota, probably between 1884 and 1886, Jeremiah “Jerry” Rogers, Martha, his wife, and their four children were coming from Iowa to Dakota. Jerry always carried several rocks under the seat of the covered wagon in which they traveled. The purpose was to throw rocks at stray dogs that would at times harass the team of horses pulling the wagon.


As they were going through one small village, a couple of men who had come from the saloon and were obviously badly overly filled with alcohol, thought they would have some fun with these travelers. So each of them took hold of the two rear wheels of the wagon, and were attempting to stop the wagon. Apparently the drunks were laughing and yelling and having a real good time, they thought. But Jerry wasn’t amused so he reached down and got a good-sized rock from under his seat, reached around the side of the wagon and threw the rock at the one on his side. As luck, or maybe skill, would have it the rock found its target. It happened to be the mouth of the reveler. At that point the merry making ceased, and Jerry looked around the side of the canvas of the covered wagon to see the unhurt drunk helping pick up the other drunk’s teeth.


After settling in South Dakota, Jerry often would seek employment away from home. Having lived in Wisconsin in prior years, he must have been familiar with opportunities in that state. On one occasion he was in Wisconsin helping move log rafts down river, probably to a sawmill. Men would ride on the logs in order to keep them from jamming. They would use pike poles to guide the logs and help keep their balance. One of the men was a smart aleck and took his pike pole and rolled the log Jerry was riding causing Jerry to fall into the water. To make matters worse, it was winter and the water was very cold. Fortunately Jerry was able to regain his position on top of the logs rather than under them. Now, Jerry has been reported to have a short fuse, but he kept his composure until he was in a position to return the favor. The smart aleck, however, wasn’t as adept at recovery. Apparently it took Jerry’s nemesis some time to get his head above the water surface just before his air supply was totally depleted. In any event, Jerry didn’t have any further difficulties from his fellow log roller.


In another instance involving water, Jerry was working on a bridge construction project. The boss was on one end of the bridge and Jerry had some tool on the other end of the bridge, and the boss wanted the tool on his side. It seemed as though the boss wasn’t overly polite in requesting the tool be brought over to him. Of course, Jerry was getting a little “warm under the collar” from the boss’s verbiage, but started across to meet the boss. They met somewhere in the middle and one thing led to another and both men fell into the river. The water was ten to twelve feet deep and had a silty, gravely bottom. When they next appeared above the water’s surface, the boss’s head was rather bloody. Jerry was able to get a handful of the river bottom and apply the same to the head of the boss. Unfortunately for the boss there were a few rocks in that hand full of river bed. At that point, Jerry’s boss had lost his desire to fight. There had been a “meeting of the minds” so to speak.


Jerry took his son, Jay, to work on a wheat harvester. Their job was to remove the straw from the thrasher after the wheat had been separated from the heads. The amount of wheat wasn’t very great when compared to the amount of straw; consequently the removal of straw was a huge part of the operation. Jerry was working very hard. Although Jay was in his mid teens, he was not adept at doing physical work according to Hank.  Anyhow, the straw pile was getting bigger and bigger. The man running the thrashing crew was getting a little unhappy so he proceeded to call on Jerry to increase his output. The only problem, the boss used some descriptive words that Jerry was not willing to accept. Jerry with pitch fork in hand proceeded to chase the boss all around the threshing machine including under the long belt from the steam engine to the thresher all the while yelling and screaming bloody murder. Needless to say, that was the last day Jerry and Jay participated on that harvest crew, but that evening and night they walked 17 miles to another harvest crew and went to work the next morning.


On the subject of harvest equipment, the power to operate a thresher came from a steam engine. They were huge, cumbersome and slow moving. A fellow whose name has been lost in the oral history operated a moonshine still on the big island in the Missouri River. There was about 70 acres of farm land on that island. Staying ahead of the “revenuers” was always a challenge for a still operator. One way to eliminate smoke from the process was to not use a fire to heat the water to make steam, but to use a steam engine which was piped from the engine to his still. Smoke from a steam engine wasn’t as likely to attract attention. The steam volume, however, was too great for the capacity of the still and there was a huge explosion. The moonshiner was injured but lived.


The story is told that there was a “still hog” living at this particular island still house. It was the hog’s job to eliminate the waste material (the mash). Of course, there was enough alcohol left in the mash so that hog would eat until he passed out. After a few hours the hog would regain consciousness, go back to the feeding trough, eat his fill, pass out and continue this routine ad infinitum.


Jerry was likened to a “river rat,” living near the water and at one time on the “big” island. The Missouri River flooded while Jerry lived on the island. He dug his home into the side of a bank on the highest point of the island, and lived like the cave dwellers of old. He was safe from the rushing waters but not from a passing dead cow that he caught in the rushing flood waters. From the dead cow Jerry caught anthrax which in those days was certain death. Jerry was a mighty tough hombre and even survived anthrax.


He rarely dressed warmly in the winter. His usual attire consisted of a vest which he held together with a large horse blanket type safety pin even though the vest had buttons and button holes.[10]


Hank said his granddad often found things. At a 4th of July party at the Snake Creek Ferry in about 1921, Jerry offered Hank a vest that smelled like camp fire smoke and Hank turned it down. At the same time he offered Hank’s brother, Clease, an old WWI flat brim campaign hat which Clease also refused. Jerry ranted at the boys for being ungrateful. Hank recalls that the articles smelled like smoke because of Jerry’s dugout home which was heated somewhat like a tepee. He was also suspicious of how Jerry may have obtained the loot.


Jerry Rogers died July 10, 1929 from chronic nephritis (kidney disease). He is buried in the Rogers family plot in Union Cemetery, Bijou Hills, South Dakota with his wife, Martha Bennett Rogers, who died of cancer on October 16, 1922. Martha Bennett Rogers’ ancestry–Bennett and Thurber–continues in chapters 5 and 6 respectively.


Jeremiah and Martha (Bennett) Rogers
(Photo from scrapbooks of Ferne Rogers Roggow)


Jerry Rogers (1849-1929)

George, Jim & Jay Rogers - c. 1887


Generation 9: Jeremiah “Jay” Rogers , Jr. and Bessie Cummings


Jeremiah Rogers, Jr., as far as any of the living relatives know, was known as “Jay” and will be so referenced in this biography. Jay married Bessie Leona Cummings on May 1, 1911 at Bijou Hills, South Dakota. Jay and Bessie were the parents of Ferne born 1912, Vernon born 1915, Helen born 1917, Ruby born 1919, twins Dorothy and Doris born 1921, Phyllis born 1924 and Evelyn born 1925. All of the children, as of this writing, are deceased except Helen who lives in Pierre, South Dakota and Phyllis who lives in Texas.              


Just three months after the death of his father, Jay lost his wife, Bessie, who died on October 31, 1929 at Snake Creek. Her death left Jay with eight children to raise, the youngest only four years old. Jay did not remarry. He did not “farm out” the children. He did not have emotional support from a widower’s grief group or Parents Without Partners. His children probably had to grow up very fast, and the older ones cared for the younger ones.


Jay played an historical role in early Missouri River navigation as the owner and pilot of a ferry which crossed the Missouri River linking the east bank of Charles Mix County with the west bank of Gregory County. There were no bridges across the river at that time. The first known ferry on the Missouri River in this area was a rope pull ferry located at Ft. Randall in Charles Mix County. A cable was anchored on each bank and the cable ran through rings on the side of the ferry. The boat was pulled, oared and pushed across the river.[11] That first boat was sold to a Donald Slate who put a tread power on the ferry that was powered by horses. In 1898 a gas powered sternwheeler, “The Nellie L,” replaced the tread power boat at that crossing. 


The Snake Creek ferry crossing was on the east side of today’s Platte/Winner bridge between Charles Mix County on the east bank and Gregory County on the west bank. Jay Roger’s involvement with that ferry crossing is noted below in his own words with editorial comments in parentheses:


The first ferry at Snake Creek was owned by Guy Federli when Gregory County was opened up to homesteaders (1901 per Jack Broome). Guy went down and bought a ferry in the city of Vermillion (the boat was called the “City of Platte”). He knew there would be a rush of land seekers for homesteads when the time came. Guy Federli ran the boat through the land seekers rush that year or maybe two. Guy sold the boat to a man named Drake who had come up the river on the old snag boat, “Mandan.” He ran it one year; another guy bought it but only ran it for a short time. He sold the ferry to Alfred Johnson and Jacob Hammer. The old boat became pretty old and was about to sink. Alfred and “Jake” had to build a new “City of Platte” which I ran for seven years. When Alfred had his ranch sale, he said if I would do the crossing for the sale, he would give me his share. This is how I came to own “The City of Platte.” In 1918-1919 I sold out to Eldon McMullen and his father. Eldon and I became partners. We built a new boat in 1920-1921. It was christened the “Snake Creek Ferry.”


Local Gregory County educator and historian, Jack Broome, provides a bit more family history related to the Snake Creek ferry crossing:


Rogers Ferry, Snake Creek Crossing, Missouri River, Charles Mix County, SD
(Photo from scrapbook of Ferne Rogers Roggow)

Mrs. Allie Trewartha and son, Orrie, built the Snake Creek store at the crossing in 1910. (Allie was Alma Ann Bennett Trewartha, a sister of Martha Bennett, and an aunt to Jay Rogers.) The store also provided travelers with lodging and a barn. Jay Rogers and Eldon “Squire” McMullen were pilots of the boat, but assistants included George Gordon, George Harding, George and Ewald Roggow. The ferry crossing fare was $1.25 plus 25 cents for an auto. Business was brisk, especially on weekends, with many fishermen on the west side of the river heading to Red Lake.


In 1921 McMullen bought out Jay Rogers and continued navigation of the ferry until 1931. George and Ewald Roggow piloted the ferry until ‘34 along with Wilbur “Boom” Slagel and Paul Rogers (nephew of Jay Rogers). Paul Rogers was the last pilot of the ferry which was sold at the McMullen farm sale.[12]


Paul’s son, Eldon “Bud” Rogers, adds that his father had been the youngest person to receive a river captain’s license at the time.


Jay’s daughter, Ferne Rogers Roggow, penned her rendition of the family history on September 26, 1975:


My father, Jay Rogers, was born to Jerry and Martha Rogers, January 1, 1884 in Panora, Guthrie County, Iowa. Their family consisted of George, Jim, William, Jay and Edna. Jim and Will passed away years ago. Edna Rogers Peterson is 86 years old and in very poor health. She lives in Ridgefield, Washington. Jay is 91 years old and in fair health. He lives at Pierre, South Dakota with his daughter, Mrs. Helen Byrum.


Jay Rogers and Bessie Cummings were married May 1, 1911 at Bijou Hills and lived there the first years of their married life. Jay and his dad, Jerry Rogers, bought a threshing machine together and threshed grain a couple of years around Geddes, South Dakota.


Our mother passed away on October 30, 1929 (sic October 31) leaving Dad to raise eight children and he did. He kept us all together; went through the dirty 30's. He fished and sold fish, trapped animals, sawed lumber, cut wood and worked for different ones to make a living.


Back in 1914 he took over the Snake Creek ferry and ran it 7 years, built a new one and he and Eldon McMullen worked together. In 1921 or 1922 he sold out to McMullen and moved to a farm we called the “Turgeon Place.” Now they call it the Rogers Draw. We lived there two years and moved to Iona on the ice in January and went into partnership with George Tagtow to run that ferry boat called the Phyllis-Lorraine. We lived right on the river by the ferry landing. We lived there one year and moved back to the farm at Platte, or Turgeon Place in 1925. We lived there until 1937 when we all decided to go to Oregon. During this time on the farm we never raised many good crops. We lived in a log cabin; they are warm homes.


In 1937 Dad had a sale and sold out, bought an International truck and put a cover over it, and we all went to Oregon. The girls and Dad picked berries during the summer, also hops. In August they all came back to South Dakota.


After Dad got back to South Dakota, he and the girls cut wood and sold it. He was offered a good job cutting lumber north of Iona for George Hammerbeck. Was there for awhile, went on up to Oacoma, South Dakota, and from there to Pierre. Finally settled down by Rousseau[13] where he lives today.”


Another daughter, Phyllis Rogers Grimshaw, wrote a short autobiography in November 1999 of her growing up years in Rogers Draw along the Missouri River. Excerpts from her story follow:

I don’t hardly remember my mother–she died in October 1929, I was five. My Dad raised us girls.

We had a good life in the old draw, lived in a house partly made of logs and partly boards with tar paper on the outside. We all learned to milk cows and ride horses and drive a team of horses. Hauled our water in barrels in a wagon pulled by a team from the Missouri River.

We had a lot of fun when we was kids. Pa made sleds for us and we would slide down hill in the winter seems like mostly in Trewartha’s pasture. We skated on the river in the winter. We swam in the river in the summer and Pa fished and sold them in Platte.

Pa also farmed with a team. We all helped in the field since we was little. We drove the team (Dolly and Bonnie) we used a drag to smooth the ground and sometimes we had to cultivate.

Pa ran a ferry boat to get cars across the river at Snake Creek, but that was before my time. We kids always was outside. We rode everything that had four feet–the horses, cows, pigs, calves, goats.

Dorothy, Evelyn and I helped Pa get wood up for winter. We would go to what we called Sabin’s timber up the river from where we lived maybe 5 miles with a team and wagon and brought the logs home on the wagon, then sawed the logs into stove size pieces. Pa made the stove out of a barrel.

Doris liked to play with dolls. Pa made those too and she liked to cut people out of an old catalog then cut out clothes to put on the people like paper dolls. She liked to stay in the house but she could drive a team or milk a cow or anything else like the rest of us.

Thomas Grimshaw, son of Phyllis Rogers Grimshaw, adds his personal memories of his Grandfather Jay:

Jay injured his knee when jumping onto or off the ferry as a young man, and he limped and suffered from chronic pain for the rest of his life as a result. He treated it with liniment, and I remember as a child that he usually smelled of liniment.  

Grandpa was able to make or repair almost anything. He used to whittle a great deal, and I still have a toy he carved–with a rectangular four-posted cage containing a round wood ball, carved in place within the cage, and with a human head on top–all carved from a single piece of wood. He used to make great slingshots for me, too!

The childhood memories of Jay’s children, who lived under conditions that we would label as deplorable today, are a tribute to the courage and tenacity of not only Jay Rogers, but of all prairie pioneers. Let’s take a short diversion to explore just one of the many prairie hardships endured by all early pioneers of the South Dakota homestead era–housing.

Prairie Housing                       


The humble little dirt-floor log cabin where Jay lived was actually quite “modern” for its time. Prairie housing was more typically tar paper shacks, dugouts and sod houses.  Homesteaders such as the Rogers, who lived near a river, hauled logs up from the river bottom to construct their log houses.


Tar paper shacks were framed with twisted planks and then covered with black tar paper. Such a crude shelter was only intended as temporary housing during mild weather months, but in reality often became a permanent dwelling place for impoverished settlers. The dugout consisted of a hole literally dug out of the side of a hill sometimes with an open roof covered with brush and sod. Often the only visible sign of a dugout was the stove pipe sticking out above the sod roof.


Sod was plentiful, but digging and plowing of the virgin prairie grass with its deep, tangled roots was arduous. The sod shanty, referred to as a “soddy,” nevertheless, was the most common architecture of the day. Furrows were turned over with a plow from approximately one-half acre of thick sod and then cut with a spade into blocks of three foot lengths. The blocks were stacked on top of each other with every third layer laid crosswise for stability. The roof was usually constructed of willow branches or planks and then covered with sod. Many houses were only 10 x 12 foot structures, but the more pretentious soddies were 16 x 20 feet. The sod house was fairly durable, cool in the summer and warm in the winter, but often had a leaky roof and afforded little protection against mice and other prairie vermin. It had poor lighting and ventilation and was impossible to keep clean. A sod house usually didn’t last more than six to seven years.[14]


The poem to follow is a humorous tribute to all of our pioneer ancestors who endured the hardships of the soddy.


My little old sod shanty on my claim


I am looking rather seedy now while holding down my claim,

And my victuals are not always served the best

And the mice play slyly round me as I nestle down to rest

In my little old shanty on the claim.

The hinges are of leather and the windows have no glass

While the roof it lets the howling blizzard in,

And I hear the hungry coyote as he slinks up through grass

Round the little old sod shanty on my claim.


Yet I rather like the novelty of living in this way

Though my bill of fare is always rather tame,

But I’m happy as a clam on my land from Uncle Sam

In the little old sod shanty on my claim.

But when I left my eastern home, a bachelor so gay

To try to win my way to wealth and fame

I little thought I’d come down to burning twisted hay

In my little old sod shanty on my claim.


My clothes are plastered o’er with dough, I’m looking like a fright,

And everything is scattered round my room.

But I wouldn’t give the freedom that I have out in the west

For the table of the eastern man’s old home.

Still, I wish that some kindhearted girl would pity on me take

And relieve me from the dreadful mess I’m in,

The angel, how I’d bless her, if this her home she’d make

In the little old sod shanty on the claim.

Author: Annie Chamberlain


Jay and Bessie Cummings Rogers with children -- Helen, Vernon and Ferne -- 1917
(Photo from scrapbook of Ferne Rogers Roggow)

Although the descendants of the emigrant woolen weavers branched out into many other vocations, some of them were still weaving in one fashion or another in the 20th century. Jay Rogers and his daughter, Ferne Rogers Roggow, and possibly the other children as well, wove fish nets traps which they used for their own fishing and marketed to other Missouri River fishermen. Ferne was also known throughout the neighborhood as a skilled seamstress and quilter.


I am indebted to Ferne, as the Rogers-Roggow historian, for her records and photos that have graced this chapter plus her personal encouragement through the years. She died January 13, 2000 at Burke, South Dakota and is buried with her husband Robert “Bob” Roggow at Lucas where she and Bob spent most of their married life about seven miles from their beloved Missouri River. Ferne’s father, Jay Rogers, died January 16, 1978 at Pierre, South Dakota, and is buried in the Rogers family plot at Bijou Hills Union Cemetery with his wife, Bessie Cummings Rogers.




Log Cabin where Jay Rogers lived for many years at Rousseau near the Missouri River
(Photo from scrapbook of Ferne Rogers Roggow)

Rogers Fish Nets
(Photo from scrapbook of Ferne Rogers Roggow)


Homestead Country of Rogers, Bennetts and Petersons in South-Central South Dakota

Still Dakota Territory During Settlement By These Ancestors

Snake Creek Store
May 22, 1912
Will Rogers Team Hauling Water From the Missouri River

[1]Myron Northrop was the son of Alma Rogers (Jacob3, Samuel II2, Samuel I1).  

[2]Homestead Application #9206 ‑ Samuel Rogers, (U. S. Government General Land Office at Yankton, South Dakota), Application date November 21, 1889, Lots 3 and 4 and S1/2 of NW1/4 of Sec.9, T100N, R71W 5 PM, 155 17/100 acres, Charles Mix County, Dakota Territory. (The Final Certificate #6304 was dated Dec.  3, 1892.)

[3]The town of Bijou Hills was in Brule County, but Bijou Hills was the mailing address for many of the farmers in both Brule and Charles Mix counties.

[4]Elizabeth’s grandson, Henry J. Rogers, in an interview by Richard “Dick” Rogers, date unknown, also confirmed the marital problems between Samuel and Elizabeth in more detail than is appropriate for this biography. He notes his grandmother Elizabeth was very capable, and he identifies the son she lived with as grandma’s favorite son, Will. Will’s wife, Emma Mobley, was a sister to Henry’s mother, Melva Mobley, so Henry had a double relationship with the Rogers-Mobley families. Interview notes courtesy of Mavis Rogers, widow of Richard “Dick” Rogers.”

[5]The Now and Then, p. 236.

[6]Homestead File ‑ Jeremiah A. Rogers, (filed April 2, 1885, Land Office at Mitchell, Dakota Territory), Homestead Application #27347, (Legal description: Brule County, E1/2, NE1/4,Sec 27 amd W1/2, NW1/4, Sec 26, Twp. 101N of R69 W. 5 P.M.)

[7]SDGENWEB, Brule Co., SD, Federal Land Records: Jeremiah A. Rogers, T104N, R70W, Sec 23, 41.9 A, 38.2A & 12.45 A., Patent #59, November 17, 1894.

[8]SDGENWEB, Brule Co., SD, Federal Land Records: Jerrry A. Rogers, T100N, R70W, Sec. 32, 40 acres, 20 acres and 20 acres, Patent #98931, December 23, 1909.

[9]Eldon Rogers is the son of Paul Rogers and grandson of Jerry Rogers; Henry “Hank” Rogers (1916-2006) was the son of George Rogers and grandson of Jerry Rogers.


[10]Photo of Jerry Rogers to follow shows the infamous vest held together with the horse blanket safety pin.

[11]Jack Broome, “Centennial Corner,” Gregory County Centennial, 1998.

[12]Jack Broome, “Centennial Corner,” Gregory County Centennial, 1998.

[13]Note: Rousseau was where Rousseau Creek joined the Missouri River.

[14]Information for prairie housing unit is taken from Prairie Conquerors by Jean Peterson Rosenkranz © 1999, pp. 4, 5.


Chapter 4



Harding, Warren and Allied Families:England to Pennsylvania


We backtrack now from South Dakota once again to mother England to pick up the Harding and Warren direct-line ancestors as well as brief biographies of two Rogers allied families, Molyneux and Bird, who married Rogers. All of these families were neighbors in Lycoming/Sullivan County, Pennsylvania.


James Harding and Sarah Warren


James Harding was born 1791 in Wickham, London, England. Much of what is known about this immigrant ancestor comes from a most unusual source. In 1838 an Englishman, whose name is now unknown, visited the Muncy Valley apparently looking for land to purchase. He probably died on his way back to London, but he kept a detailed diary of the places and people he encountered from April 28, 1838 to November 30, 1838 beginning with departure from London and ending with a final entry about his illness. This diary took a circuitous journey of its own from London to Pennsylvania to a London book shop to the Cadmus Book Shop of New York City to the James V. Brown Library, and finally to the Lycoming Historical Society–a journey spanning over 108 years.  The journal in its entirety with editorial comments is now on line at Penn State Digital Library, (The Now and Then, Volume V, Part 58, pages 151 through 169).


The journal entries of July 20 , 21, and 22, 1838, along with the editorial comments, not only give us a biography of James Harding, but also a description of the North Mountain Settlement where the Harding family lived. Those entries are recapped below without spelling, grammar or punctuation corrections:


July 20 - Finished haying Mr. James Harding called stayed all night

July 21 - Walked home with Mr. Harding to the North Mountain Settlement started at 2

pm arrived at 7 pm passed through a very hilly country

July 22 - Up at 5 o’clock Breakfasted and started for the top of the mountain a distance of one and quarter miles which took nearly 2 hours, it being very steep, about halfway up is a most beautiful spring running out from between the rocks. The Mountain is composed of rocks and covered with Woods of all kind allmost. We stopped and drank of the spring and eat Raspberrys which grew by the side. I cleaned out the spring and piled up some rocks at the head. Mr. Harding said he would in future call it (Sash or Sart?) Tavern in compliment to me to my taking so much pains with it, and being so much pleased with the refreshment it afforded, when we reached the top we were well paid for the trouble of climbing the side. The view was splendid in the extreme I saw the Susquehanna river and Lewis Lake and the 2 villages of Hughesville and town of Muncy no end of Farms and woods. The Mountain is between the North and West Branch of the Susquehanna. We got back to Mr. Hardings at 2 o’clock, dined and afterwards went getting rasberrys with his daughters.


Mr. Harding is an Englishman and was pressed from the Bull and Mouth in London on board a Man-of-War at the age of 15, was in several engagements and ran away when he was 21 at the taking of Washington in America, was marched up the country by the Americans and set to work by the Captain. He was very saving and now owns 400 acres of land on which he lives and has brought up a family of 12 children. He Mr. Harding is now 47 years old.[1]


An editorial by T. Kenneth Wood, M.D., continues with the history of North Mountain and an interview with James Harding’s daughter, Sarah, wife of George Edkin:


The spring is located on the saddle between the two highest peaks of North Mountain. Tradition has it that during the Civil War, the men who resisted the draft and brought about the situation known locally as “The Fishing Creek Rebellion,” retired to this inaccessible spot and remained there hidden from the searching government agents.


James Harding was born in London “at the Wickham” in 1791 and is buried at Mount Zion Church in Penn Township, Lycoming County, Pennsylvania. From his daughter, Mrs. George Edkin, now a woman of over ninety years of age and living in Brocton, N.Y., the following verification of the Diarist’s notes was obtained.


At the tender age of 12 years,[2] her father was apprenticed to a London tavern keeper, the proprietor of the “Bull and Mouth.”[3] He was at work scouring knives and forks when an English press gang entered and took him along with them. His parents were too poor to pay his ransom and he was placed aboard an English war vessel. He remained in the English Navy for eleven years. The Captain took a great interest in him and taught him how to read and write. This was the extent of his education.


At the time the British sacked and burned the city of Washington in 1812,[4] young Harding was in the landing party and succeeded in deserting to the American forces. He was taken in charge by an American officer named Massey, who sent him to his estate in Delaware, where he worked for two years. From there he joined a party going to Forksville, Sullivan County, helping them to erect a woolen mill. The man at the head of this party was Samuel Rogers. It was at this settlement that he met and married Sarah, daughter of Joseph[5] and Mary Warren. Four children were born to them on the Loyalsock and they then moved to a farm on Big Muncy Creek near Strawbridge. Seven more children were born there before they made their permanent home at the North Mountain settlement, where he bought 400 acres. It was here that their twelfth child was born in 1837, our informant (writers insertion: Sarah Harding Edkin) who in 1927 is still in fair health and vigor.


In the later years of James Harding’s life, he had a great desire to return to England. One can understand his eager hospitality to the visiting Englishman. Whether he feared to go back or not

is not known, but his wife persuaded him to write instead and urge his relatives to come here to live. One brother, Joseph, his wife, two sons and two daughters, consented to come at his expense.  Joseph resided in Montoursville.[6]


The diarist visited many other Muncy Township residents besides James Harding. His mode of travel was by foot, and he sometimes walked several hours to visit a neighbor. He mentions spending time with “Mr. Rogers” and visiting Mr. Rogers father’s cloth factory, corn, plaster and saw mills. The father would have been Samuel Rogers (2), but there is some dispute about which son was “Mr. Rogers.” The editor of the diary claims it was Richard Rogers who was working at the mills and who was the companion of the diarist. Myron Northrop, grandson of Jacob Rogers, however, notes that Richard was only 15 in 1838 and not likely to have been referred to as “Mr. Rogers” nor have been “in charge of the Muncy Mills” as stated by the editor. Myron contends it was more likely his grandfather, Jacob Rogers, age 22 at the time, than Richard Rogers. Regardless of the identity of “Mr. Rogers,” the various entries about visiting the Rogers’ home and mills were of great interest to this writer, and some readers may wish to read this journal in its entirety.


James Harding married Sarah Warren, daughter of John Warren and Mary Ward about 1816 at Forksville, Lycoming County, Pennsylvania. Sarah was born April 22, 1791 at Liverpool, England. James and Sarah were the parents of 12 children according to their youngest daughter, also named Sarah, although only nine have been found to date:


Josiah born about 1817, a tailor who lived at Williamsport, Pennsylvania and lived to a ripe old age

Elizabeth born January 11,1820, direct-line ancestor whose biography will follow

Joseph born about 1821

Richard born April 16, 1822, married Permelia Bingham Converse March 8, 1846 and died March 5, 1897.

Lavina born March 28, 1825, married Benjamin O. McCarty and died 1910 at Penn, Lycoming County, Pennsylvania

William born about 1830

Hulda born about 1834

John born about 1836

Sarah born 1837, married George Edkin about 1858. She died in 1930 at the age of 93.


It is difficult to capture the essence of James Harding since he left few paper trails. Besides the diary and brief excerpts in biographical and historical sources, the paper trail includes three federal census records:


1840 Sullivan County, Pennsylvania

James Harding in Davidson Township as head of household listing 1 male under 5, 2 males 5‑10, 2 males 15‑20, 1 male 40‑50; 2 females under 5, 1 female 10‑15, 1 female 15‑20, 1 female 20‑30, and 1 female 40‑50.


1850 Sullivan County, Pennsylvania

James Harding in Davidson Township, age 60, farmer born England, Sarah 60 born England, William 20 farming born PA, Hulda 16 born PA, John 14 born PA, and Sarah 12 born PA.


1860 Sullivan County, Pennsylvania

James Harding in Davidson Township, age 67, born England, Sarah 62 born PA , and Harriet L. Morris 8 born PA.. (The 8 year old child could be a grandchild living with James and Sarah.)


Sarah Harding Edkin provided one more tidbit about her father–a mermaid tattoo on one arm and a heart tattoo on the other arm, probably souvenirs of his forced British Naval experience.  Grandson, Howard Edkin of Strawbridge, reportedly possessed James’ Last Will and Testament, a document which might provide proof of the children and in-laws if it could be found.


This photo page is courtesy of Margaret Wright Wolfe, Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania, a descendant of Joseph Rogers (1784-1847)


James died October 30, 1869, probably at his farm on North Mountain, Sullivan County.  Sarah Warren Harding died before her husband on May 8, 1855.     

The Saga of John Warren, William Molyneux and Powell Bird: First Permanent Settlers of Sullivan County

Genealogy of William Molyneux and His Descendants

(Northumberland County until 1796, then Lycoming County, and then Sullivan County in 1847)


William Penn was the owner of most of Pennsylvania through royal land grants in the late 1600's. By the 1790's this territory was opened to private investment ranging from six cents an acre to one dollar an acre. Joseph Priestley, Jr. whom we’ve encountered in chapter 2, had purchased large tracts of land in northern Pennsylvania to form a commune. Joseph’s father arrived on the scene in 1794 and hired crews to survey the land that had been purchased with his financial backing in Northumberland County.[7] Three Northumberland men surveying for Priestley would become the first permanent settlers of the territory. Although there are different versions of how and when Molyneux, Bird and Warren settled along the Loyalsock Creek about 30 miles from Muncy, it is believed that all three were connected with Priestley who gave each of the men 50 acres in payment for their services.


One version of the story is that Priestley sent all three men to the Forks of the Loyalsock where they cleared two acres and built a small house for Priestley. Another version is that William Molyneux was the first to come with a surveying party for Priestley. Molyneux then returned to Northumberland and brought Powell Bird with him and built his own house. This latter version is told by Josiah Warren, son of John and Mary Warren.[8] The three then returned to Northumberland and, according to Josiah Warren, Molyneux returned to England at that time to get his family (another version of that event by Moses Rogers will be taken up in the Molyneux family history).


John Warren and Mary Ward


John Warren was born April 17, 1767 in Liverpool, England.[9] He was married to Mary Ward, born April 22, 1769 in Liverpool. John and Mary’s eleven children were:


Sarah, this writer’s ancestor, born April 22, 1791, who married James Harding

Jane born May 24,1795, married John Lambert

Joseph born January 27,1798, married Eliza Ann Bryan, died March 22, 1878

Mary born September 30, 1800, married John Wenck, died September 4, 1884

John born November 16, 1801, married Elizabeth Glidewell, died August 5, 1872

Elizabeth and Hannah, twins born September 15, 1803; Elizabeth died March 20, 1823[10] or March 20, 1828,[11] and Hannah died August 5, 1821[12] or August 5, 1824[13]

James ** born September 17,1805, died July 26, 1888

Josiah ** born May 10, 1808, died March 9, 1904
** Editor's Note: In June 2007, Rob Love provided a genealogical history of the branch of the Warren family that descends through Josiah Warren. You can see it at Josiah Warren: Son of John Warren and Mary Ward. In December 2010, Laura McDaniel provided a link to her McDaniel family history, which includes the genealogical trees for both James and Josiah Warren's branches of the Warren family. You can find this information at The McDaniel Family Tree.

Twins Charlotte and Judith born March 7, 1810; Judith died March 8, 1881.


All of the children were born in Sullivan County, (then Lycoming) Pennsylvania except Sarah who was born in England before John and Mary emigrated in 1793.[14]


In all the confusion of trying to reconcile different versions of the “first settlers” story, it is this writer’s “best guess” that John Warren was the first to actually bring his family to live at the Forks. Enroute Mary Warren delivered daughter Jane on May 24,1795 at the home of Abram Webster on the old Gennessee road between Muncy and Hillsgrove. Mary Warren and the new baby spent several weeks with the Webster family while John and the oldest child, Sarah, continued on to the Loyalsock on horseback.[15] (Editorial comment: Sarah would have been only four years old in 1795.) The Warren family was joined by William Molyneux and the Bird family, whose land adjoined the Warren’s, in the fall of 1795.


John Warren is credited with establishing the first school in Elkland Township. The kitchen of John’s family home was used for a classroom. Classes were taught by John Bull probably between 1804 and 1806. In 1808 Mr. Priestley offered some of the building supplies for a log school house, but it seems the settlers couldn’t agree on where it should be built so it wasn’t until 1816 when widow Sarah Huckell donated land at Forksville that the first school in Sullivan County was constructed[16] as noted in chapter 2.


Historical records tells us that John and Mary actually built three houses at different times along the creek in close proximity to the original homestead. The Warren homestead was owned by descendants of William Molyneux and Powell Bird for a number of generations. We can assume that these families formed a close bond through the years as they carved out their livelihoods in virgin wilderness. John Warren died on April 17, 1813. Mary Ward Warren died on May 14, 1840 having outlived her husband by many years. She died on May 14, 1840. John and Mary were buried in the Warren Cemetery which today is the Millview Cemetery.

Editor's Note: The Warren, Molyneux and Bird families were all tightly bound by geography, marriage and local community ties. But that doesn't mean they always got along. It turns out that longstanding feuds developed between the Warren and Molyneux and the Warren and Bird families, respectively. These hard feelings passed down into the late 20th century, as recounted in The Molyneux Feuds.


John and Mary Warren Grave Marker, Millview Cemetery, Sullivan County, Pennsylvania
Source: The Warren Photo History, as posted on the Sullivan County, PAGENWEB Project, hosted by Rootsweb,
copyright (c) 2004 Robert E. Sweeney and Individual Contributors. All rights reserved. Used by permission of the owners.
Original photo by Connie (King) McMichael.



William Molyneux and Margaret Atherton


William Molyneux was born February 17, 1761 near Manchester, Lancashire, England. He married Margaret Atherton on July 18, 1785 in Warrington Parish, Lancashire, England. Margaret was born October 24, 1759 in Warrington. William and Margaret were the parents of John, Elizabeth, Edward, Thomas and Ann.  William was nicknamed “Willie the Weaver” because if his occupation as a weaver.  The Molyneux family traces back to 11th century England and can be found in “Genealogy of William Molyneaux and His Descendants” by George Molyneux Pardoe, 1936 (revised 1976 and 2002 by Louise E. M. Woodhead). 


Historical accounts claim that in 1792 or 1793, while purchasing materials for his weaving business in Manchester, William was seized by a press gang and forced into service on a man-of-war ship for the English Navy (a story very similar to that of James Harding). Unfortunately this was a rather common occurrence during the time frame when England was trying to control its insubordinate colonies in America. Unlike James Harding, however, William made his escape rather quickly while the ship was anchored in Chesapeake Bay. He joined a surveying party on its way to the English settlement at Northumberland, Pennsylvania.[17]


As noted, William was one of the original three settlers who surveyed for Priestley and received 50 acres on the Loyalsock. After clearing the land for Priestley, he cleared a spot to build a cabin for himself located on the opposite side of the creek from Millview. That house was destroyed by fire. He built a second house of hewn logs near his sawmill. This house seemed comfortable enough for a family so he returned to England in 1797 for his wife and children only to find that his wife, Margaret, and his daughter, Ann, who had been born in 1792 had died.[18] He returned with three of his four children, John, Thomas and Elizabeth. At a later date his other son, Edward, who would become the husband of Rebecca Bird, daughter of Powell Bird, also came from England and joined the family. William’s third house was built within the boundaries of the village of Millview just a few yards from the original Molyneux Homestead.[19]


In December 1808 a petition by William Molyneux to the Lycoming county court was read which indicates the condition of the roads in those early years:


The petition of the subscribers inhabitants of Shrewsbury and Elkland townships respectfully showeth: That some alteration and addition to the road laid out some few years since from Peter Carson’s to Edward J. Eldred’s by the Forks of the Loyalsock creek, would be greatly beneficial to your petitioners and the inhabitants in general of Shrewsbury and Elkland townships. That so much of the present road as leads from Rock Run to George Edkin’s may be laid on much better ground for a road. Likewise, so much of it that is from the Eleventh to the Twelfth Mile Tree might keep down the mountain to the creek in a more gradual descent to the Forks of the Loyalsock being too steep and by its declivity rendered almost impassible for carriages. Also, that a branch may start out at or near the Eleventh Mile Tree in an easterly direction until it strikes the Berwick and Newtown turnpike (Susquehanna and Tioga) at or near the junction of the Birch and Loyalsock creeks as these improvements are evidently of great advantage.[20]


The outcome of this petition is unknown, but once more we find that roads–lack thereof, and improvements thereof–were of paramount importance to these early settlers.


By 1815 there is record of William Molyneux, John Warren and John Huckel/Huckell involved in a joint lumber manufacturing venture. Pine was plentiful along the Little Loyalsock Creek. After harvesting, the sawed lumber was rafted down the Loyalsock.[21] The Loyalsock had a rapid current which made rafting dangerous, but it seems many of the Lycoming/Sullivan County settlers had to learn how to raft as part of their economic survival.


William Molyneux never remarried. He died April 3, 1848 and is buried in the old Molyneux family cemetery at Millview.


William’s son, Thomas, married Hannah Rogers, daughter of Samuel and Ann Gaunt Rogers. They settled near William’s farm and built a grist mill, a stone dam and sawmill. Both the sawmill and grist mill burned about a year after they were built in 1848. The same year that Thomas’ livelihood went up in flames, both Thomas’ father and his wife died. Shortly thereafter Thomas moved to Wisconsin with some of his children. He is on record in the 1850 census in Columbia County living neighbors to Samuel (3) and Elizabeth Harding Rogers.[22] Like his father, Thomas remained a widower and raised his children by himself. Thomas’ daughter, Sarah, married Powell Bird, Jr.; and his daughter, Harriet, married Charles Bird. Both Powell Bird, Jr. and Charles Bird were grandsons of the immigrant Powell Bird.[23] These marriages not only linked the Molyneux and Bird families, but connected the Rogers with the Birds as well since Sarah and Harriet were granddaughters of Samuel and Ann Gaunt Rogers.


Powell Bird and Lydia Hannant


Powell Bird was born at Worstead, Norfolk, England about 1750. Egle’s Notes reports that he “came from London.” This could mean he lived in London as an adult or merely that he sailed from London. He was a weaver by trade. Powell married Lydia Hannant on September 5, 1773 in Dilham, Norfolk, England. Lydia was born in 1754 in Dilham.[24]


Powell and Lydia were reportedly the parents of 21 or 22 children; however there seems to be record of only 12 children, 11 of whom were born in England. It is noted that the older children did not come to America with their parents so it is likely that Pennsylvania records are not available for those who did not immigrate. The last and only child born after emigration, Rebecca, is credited with being the first white child to be born in what would later become Sullivan County. As noted earlier, two of Powell Bird’s grandsons married daughters of Thomas and Hannah Rogers Molyneux.


The Bird family emigrated in 1793, and like Samuel and Ann Gaunt Rogers, they lost a son (Robert) at sea. They initially settled in what was Northumberland County, Pennsylvania for about a year before Powell joined the Priestley surveying party to the Little Loyalsock Creek and built a small house near the creek, the first of three homes the family would live in during their lifetime on the Loyalsock. The Bird household goods had to be transported up the creek in dug outs to get to their new home.


By 1797 Powell Bird of Shrewsbury Township was noted on a tax record as owning 150 acres, a yoke of oxen, a cow and was living in the second house he had built at that time.[25] Powell is also on an 1808 list of Shrewsbury taxables.[26]


Powell Bird was one of the organizers of the Northumberland Baptist Church. He, along with Samuel Rogers, was among the prominent members of the Little Muncy Baptist Church which was organized in 1817,[27] and he was active in the Loyalsock Baptist Church. William Henry Egle noted that Powell’s name was most frequently found in church records so we can assume church life was very important to the Bird family. Egle provides yet another glimpse into the character and reputation of Mr. Bird as follows:


Mr. Bird seems to have been a man remarkably well adapted to open a new settlement, possessing energy and forethought, he by all accounts surrounded his home with the comforts and to an extent the luxuries of life. Morally and socially he stood high and by his example gave an enterprising and healthful tone to society.[28]


Powell Bird died April 13, 1829 at his home in Forks Township, Lycoming County, Pennsylvania, and Lydia died there on January (or June) 29, 1832. They were buried in the Bird family cemetery at Millview.


Much more detail on the intermarriages of these families and their historical backgrounds can be found on the Sullivan County, Pennsylvania Genealogy Web Page for the information of any readers wishing to know more about our allied kin. Meanwhile we will take our leave of Pennsylvania and once more return to England from “whence came” two more direct-line ancestors, John Bennett and John Thurber.

[1]T. Kenneth Wood, M.D., Ed., "Journal of an English Emigrant Farmer,” (hereafter Journal) The Now and Then, Vol. V, Part 58, Williamsport, PA: The Williamsport Printing and Binding Co., 1936, (PA’s Past Digital Bookshelf), p. 164.

[2]The diarist gave age of James Harding at time of involuntary enlistment in the English Navy as 15 whereas daughter Sarah claims age 12. Neither age computes with 11 years of service and running away from the Navy at age of 21.

[3]Note: The name of this tavern has been recorded in other sources as Bull and Mount.

[4]Note: The “sacking and burning of Washington by the British” occurred in August of 1814.

[5]Note: James Harding married the daughter of John and Mary Warren–not Joseph Warren.

[6]Journal, pp. 164, 165.

[7]P. J. Little, "The Grain of Salt in Streby: A Critical Review," citing Anatomy of A Family, unpublished manuscript by Kenneth W. Wright, M.D., as posted on Sullivan County, Pennsylvania Genealogy Project, part of the PA GenWeb and hosted by RootsWeb, copyright (c) 2005 Robert E. Sweeney and Individual Contributors. All rights reserved. Used with permission of the owners.

[8]Thomas J. Ingham, History of Sullivan County, Pennsylvania, (hereafter Ingham) Chicago: The Lewis Publishing Company, 1899, p. 11, as posted on Sullivan County, Pennsylvania Genealogy Project, part of the PA GenWeb and hosted by RootsWeb, copyright (c) 2005 Robert E. Sweeney and Individual Contributors.  All rights reserved. Used with permission of the owners.

[9]John Warren was from Derbyshire per William Henry Egle, in Notes and Queries of Pennsylvania, 1700s-1800s, Fourth Series Vol. II, p. 145.

[10]George Molyneux Pardoe, Genealogy of William Molyneaux and His Descendants, (hereafter Molyneaux and Descendants) Goldie Brothers Book and Job Printers, 1891, p. 5; subsequent revisions in 1935 by Florence M. Hatch, et al, 1976 and 2002 by Louise E. M. Woodhead.

[11]Ruth May Warren Rogers, compiler, “The Warren Family Record” (hereafter Warren Family) submitted to Lorin F. Pardoe by Norma Rogers, 2003.

[12]Molyneux and Descendants, p. 5.

[13]Warren Family.

[14]George Streby, History of Sullivan County, (hereafter Streby) Dunsmore, PA, 1903, as posted on Sullivan County, Pennsylvania Genealogy Project, part of the PA GenWeb and hosted by RootsWeb, copyright © 2000-1, Robert E. Sweeney and Individual Contributors. All rights reserved. Used with permission of the owners.

[15] Ingham.

[16]William Henry Egle, Notes and Queries of Pennsylvania, 1700s-1800s, (hereafter Egle) Fourth Series Vol. II, pp. 189, 190, printed from Family Tree Maker, CD 19 ©

[17]Egle, 4th Series, Vol. II, pp. 150, 151.

[18]Ingham, p. 11. Note this version of the 1797 date of William Molyneux’s return to England as told by Moses Rogers differs from the time frame of 1794 or 1795 as told by Josiah Warren.


[20]Egle, 4th Series, Vol. II, pp. 196, 197.

[21]Egle, 4th Series, Vol. II, pp 219, 220.

[22]1850 Columbia County, Wisconsin Federal Census, p. 317, (711/711, Thomas Molyneux 60 laborer England; Joseph 39 millwright PA, Enoch 23 millwright PA, Rachel 27 PA, Amanda 19 PA, Luzinda 13 PA, Cynthia 9,PA).

[23]Egle, 4th Series, Vol. II, p. 388.

[24]“Descendants of Powell Bird,” descendancy report by Lorin E. Pardoe citing George Molyneux Pardoe, The Genealogy of William Molyneux and His Descendants, by George Molyneux Pardoe, 1936, (revised 1976 and 2002 by Louise E. M. Woodhead).

[25]1797 Williamsport tax assessment as cited in Ancestry World Tree Project, Roger Yonkin.

[26] Streby.

[27]Egle, Fourth Series Vol. I, p. 246; Vol. II, pp. 151, 152.

[28]Egle, Fourth Series, Vol. II, p. 145.


Chapter 5                    



 Bennett:  English Ancestors in Colonial America

(Also spelled Bennet, Bennit in colonial records)


Our family history now continues from chapter 3 with the ancestors of Martha Bennett whose pedigree dates back to the 1600's in England.


Generation 1: John Bennett and Ursula White


John Bennett was born about 1630 in Weymouth, Dorset, England. He immigrated as a young, unmarried man sometime before 1655. One source claims he settled first in Boston and then in New London County, Connecticut. He was married to Ursula White on October 22, 1655 in Providence, Rhode Island or Rehoboth (now Bristol County) Massachusetts, depending upon which source one chooses, or more likely both places are correct. Rehoboth was founded in 1643 as a very large territory encompassing part of what today is Rhode Island.[1] A short history of Rehoboth can be found in chapter 6.


Ursula White was the daughter of William and Elizabeth Cadmam White born about 1636 in Massachusetts.[2] If birth locations are correct for the children of John and Ursula, we can assume the couple lived most of their married life in Stonington, New London County, Connecticut.


John and Ursula were the parents of John (born about 1658 and died 1660), William born 1660, Thomas born after 1660, Isaac born about 1662, John born 1666, Elizabeth born1672, Cornelius born after 1672, Joseph born 1681, Ursula born about 1682 and Susanna born about 1683. This writer’s immigrant ancestor, John, Jr. was named in memory of his deceased brother John–a very common practice in an era of high infant/child mortality rates. Note that some of these birth dates are “best guess,” and the children may not all be in the correct birth order.


John Bennett, Sr. died September or October 22, 1691 in Stonington, and Ursula died May 17, 1703.[3]


Generation 2: John Bennett and Elizabeth Parke


John Bennett, son of John above, was born on February 10 or 19, 1666.[4] He married Elizabeth Parke March 8, 1687 in Stonington.[5] Elizabeth was born October 28, 1671 to Samuel and Hannah Parke. John and Elizabeth’s children were Hannah born 1688, John born 1691, Samuel born 1694, Thomas born 1697, Joseph born 1699, Elizabeth born 1702, Isaac born 1705, and Nathan born 1709 all in Stonington, New London, Connecticut. John and seven of his eight children were baptized in April 1710. The family lived at Stonington and Preston, New London County, Connecticut. Conflicting information makes the moving dates uncertain.


Two of John’s sons, Samuel and Joseph, became known as the progenitors of the Coventry, Rhode Island Bennetts. Samuel, Thomas, Joseph, Isaac and Nathan all took Harrington women as their brides. Elizabeth married Josiah Harrington.


John Bennett’s will was dated December 7, 1745. He died on December 20, 1745 at Preston, and his will was proved January 10, 1746.[6] Elizabeth died about 1751.


Generation 3: Thomas Bennett and Jemima Harrington


Thomas, son of John above, was born November 14, 1697 in Stonington, New London County, Connecticut.[7] As noted above, Thomas was baptized April 1710 in Preston, Connecticut along with his father and siblings. He married Jemima Harrington April 22, 1719 at Preston.[8] Jemima was the daughter of John and Anna Harrington.[9] Thomas and Jemima were the parents of Thomas born 1720, twins Josiah and Daniel born 1721 or 1722, Nathan born 1723 and Ishmael born about 1725.


By 1733 Thomas, Sr. owned land in and resided in Scituate, Providence County, Rhode Island. In 1735 he deeded 500 acres from Ishmael Spink, and in 1743 deeded 100 acres of land to each of his sons. Other deeds between Thomas and his sons are recorded in 1750, 1768 and 1769.[10]

Jemima died April 30, 1761 in Scituate. Thomas, Sr. may have died shortly after the last recorded land record in 1769 in Scituate, Rhode Island.


Thomas Sr.’s brother, Isaac, and two of Thomas’ sons, Thomas, Jr. and Ishmael, migrated to the Wyoming Valley of Luzerne County, Pennsylvania in the 1770's, more than 20 years before Rogers, Bird, Molyneux and Harding settled in neighboring Northumberland and Lycoming Counties. We don’t know why our Bennetts migrated to Pennsylvania, but they probably were not anticipating restless Natives. Indian hostility, fueled in part by the British, was at an all-time high. In 1769 or 1770 Thomas, Jr. joined up with 40 other New England settlers who built a fort (the Forty Fort) on the west bank of the Susquehanna River. Because Thomas is noted as one “who figures so conspicuously in the Wyoming massacre and whose name is held in veneration by the present inhabitants of that beautiful valley,[11] it might be worth our while to divulge in a short history lesson.


The Battle of Wyoming


In late June 1778 an alarm was sounded about a large force of British Loyalists under the command of Major John Butler, and Cayuga and Seneca Indians (Iroquois tribes) under the command of Chief Cornplanter who were swooping into the Wyoming Valley from New York. The British had suffered an embarrassing defeat at Saratoga in upstate New York the previous year and since then had been conducting hit-and-run raids among the colonial Patriot settlements. The British commander had sent an Indian and a Ranger under a flag of truce to demand surrender of Forty Fort, but the fort refused to capitulate.


Colonel Zebulon Butler, on leave from the Continental Army, meanwhile had dispatched a missive to Philadelphia for reinforcements from the Continental Army. Rather than wait for reinforcements to arrive, however, Colonel Butler and Lt. John Jenkins, Jr. in command of the Fort, were persuaded by some of the younger rebel rousers to go on the offensive. History reports that the 24th Regiment at Forty Fort was a motley group of “the undisciplined, the youthful, and the aged.[12] That might have been a bit harsh, but it is evident that most were farmers–not trained soldiers whose motivation for fighting was self-protection of their families and farms.


On July 3, 1778, Colonel Zebulon Butler led the small army of 375 men (including our Thomas Bennett) out of Forty Fort up what is now Wyoming Avenue, Wilkes-Barre. The army made a short stop at a bridge crossing Abraham’s Creek where Thomas Bennett loudly announced that they were marching into a snare, and he returned to the fort. Late in the afternoon, the 24th Regiment engaged the British and Indians and were horribly defeated in less than a 30-minute battle, but the massacre continued for another 12 hours. The captured were tortured and killed by the Indians.


The next day the articles of capitulation were signed with the agreement that the settlers would lay down their arms and the fort would be destroyed. In turn the settlers could remain on their farms unmolested, but that is not exactly what happened. The Indians, in violation of the

agreement, continued the killing and also destroyed approximately 1,000 homes resulting in a mass exodus to other settlements, especially of women and children. Thomas Bennett, Jr. and his son, Andrew (about 16 years of age), were taken prisoners by the Indians, but they escaped from their captors a few days later.


One of the casualties of the massacre flight, as it would later be called, was a Hannah Rogers who became lost in the swamps and died of exhaustion. Her body was placed under a fallen log and epitaph written in charcoal: “Here rests the remains of Hannah WIFE of Josiah Rogers, who died while fleeing from the Indians after the massacre at Wyoming.[13] Since our direct-line Rogers did not arrive in Pennsylvania until 1800, the identity of Josiah and Hannah Rogers is unknown by this writer.                                                       


Thomas Jr.’s brother, Ishmael, also served in the military during the Wyoming Valley Massacre in 1778. Ishmael and his son, Rufus, are listed in 1796 taxables in Luzerne County, Pennsylvania. Ishmael was a grindstone manufacturer at Hanover, Luzerne County. He had moved on to Delaware County, Ohio by 1816.[14]


The Revolutionary War was an historical backdrop for both the Bennett and Thurber families, but detailed history is beyond the scope of this book. Perhaps this small thread of Revolutionary War history provides readers with an appreciation for our Bennett Pennsylvania ancestors engaged in the fight for independence and protection of their families.


Generation 4: Josiah Bennett (1) and Susannah Bates

2nd wife, Sarah

Josiah Bennett (1), son of Thomas above and twin to Daniel, was born February 2, 1721 or 1722 in Preston, New London County, Connecticut. His first wife was Susannah Bates, daughter of Francis and Mary Bates,[15] whom he married about 1744 in Scituate, Providence County, Rhode Island. Susannah Bates was born July 28, 1724 in Voluntown, New London County, Connecticut.[16] She died sometime between the birth of her last child in 1765 and Josiah’s remarriage to Sarah (surname unknown) in 1768.


Josiah (1) and Susannah were the parents of Francis born 1745, Josiah (2) born 1747, Dorcas born 1749, Zilpha born 1750, Matthew born 1752, Susanna born 1755, Stephen born 1757, Amie born 1759, Micajah born about 1762 and Ichabod born 1765. Josiah (1) fathered another eight children by his second wife, Sarah.


Three of Josiah and Susannah’s sons followed in their father’s footsteps as Baptist preachers–Francis, Josiah (2) and Matthew. Josiah (1) served a Baptist Church at Scituate.


Rhode Island and Vermont colonial records provide some additional information about Josiah (1). As noted earlier, he was deeded 100 acres by his father in 1743. He was admitted as a freeman in 1748 in Scituate, Rhode Island,[17] and he is listed in the Rhode Island 1774 census at Scituate.[18] Josiah (1) purchased 100 acres of land from Elijah Gore at Guilford, Vermont on June 14, 1775,[19] but the family apparently did not move immediately to Vermont as he is on record in the Rhode Island 1777 military census as age 50-60 and able to serve.[20] Josiah (1) and his son, Joseph, may have served in the Revolutionary War in the state of Vermont.[21]


Josiah (1) died in 1785 in Guilford, Vermont,[22] leaving Sarah widowed with eight children to raise including an infant. His estate wasn’t settled for another 35 years.


Those of us directly descended from Martha Marie Bennett descend from two (yes two not just one) of Josiah (1) and Susannah’s children; namely, Josiah (2) and Ichabod. An outline descendant tree of John Bennett on page 98 shows Josiah Bennett (2) as the grandfather of Lydia Thurber, and Ichabod Bennett as the grandfather of Solomon Bennett. (Lydia and Solomon are husband and wife in Generation 7.) Following the descendancy from this point is a challenge even for the writer so it is recommended that readers refer to the referenced tree on page 98 to assist in weaving your way through Generation 5 and Generation 6 to follow.

Generation 5: Josiah Bennett (2) and Sarah “Sally” Baker


Josiah (2) Bennett, son of Josiah (1) above, was born May 10, 1747 in Scituate, Providence County, Rhode Island. His wife was Sarah Baker, daughter of George Baker. Sarah is identified through the will of George Baker dated November 1, 1803 and proved March 15, 1804 in which he bequeaths to a daughter, Sarah, wife of Josiah Bennett.[23]


Josiah (2) and Sarah were the parents of ten children: Israel, Samson and Susanna (birth dates unknown), Hannah born 1776, Sarah born 1783, Josiah (3) born 1789, Solomon born 1795, Thirza born 1796, Celia born 1799 (also spelled Selah in some records), and Noah born 1800.[24] It is believed that the older children were born in Foster, Rhode Island; and the four youngest children were born in Sterling, Windham, Connecticut. To confuse the “mailing address” issue, however, there is a posting on listing the daughter, Sarah, born in New London County, Connecticut.[25]


Josiah (2) died in 1819 at Sterling, Windham County, Connecticut. No further record was found for Sarah Baker Bennett.


Generation 5: Ichabod Bennett and Nancy Peterson


Ichabod Bennett, son of Josiah (1) and brother of Josiah (2), was born April 4, 1765 in Scituate (later to become Foster), Providence County, Rhode Island. His wife was Nancy Peterson who was born about 1768 in Rhode Island. Nancy’s parents may have been Nathan and Dorcas Peterson, but this information is unproven.[26] Ichabod and Nancy were the parents of Israel, Elizabeth and Susanna (birth years unknown),[27] George born 1792,[28] Olney born about 1804 based on 1850 Providence County, Rhode Island Federal Census, Charles born about 1805[29] and possibly Nancy born about 1811 per an entry.[30] More research needs to be done to prove the children in this family.


Ichabod Bennett was listed in the 1840 Foster, Providence County, Rhode Island Federal Census in the 70-80 age group with a female listed in the 70-80 age bracket. In the 1850 Foster, Providence County, Rhode Island Federal Census, Ichabod is listed as age 85 and wife, Nancy, as age 83. Nancy died in Foster on August 9, 1856. It is assumed Ichabod died before the 1860 census as he is not listed on that census.


In the ongoing effort to weave some flesh onto the bones of these ancestors, a sad reference about the fate of Ichabod’s son, Olney, was noted in the 1850 Providence, Rhode Island Federal Census. Olney, age 46, no occupation, was living in the “poor house” along with 28 other unfortunate souls.


Generation 6: Celia Bennett and Alfred C. Thurber

Celia or Selah Bennett, daughter of Josiah (2) above, born 1799 probably in Windham County, Connecticut, married Alfred C. Thurber about 1817. Celia and Alfred as Generation 6 technically belong in both the Bennett and Thurber chapters, but obviously that would not be a wise use of space. Based on the patriarchal model, their biography is included in the Thurber chapter. Their daughter, Lydia Thurber, married her second cousin, Solomon Bennett, and Solomon and Lydia carry on the Bennett direct-line descendancy in this chapter as Generation 7. Those of you who by now are relying on the generational listings might wish to fast forward to the Thurber chapter to read the Celia and Alfred Thurber story as Generation 6 and then rewind back to this point. Again, you may wish to consult the John Bennett outline descendant tree on page 98 to stay on track. The genealogical quagmire created by the marriage of these second cousins should discourage any reader from marrying a cousin!


Generation 6: George Bennett and Martha Wilcox                     


George Bennett, son of Ichabod above, was born in Foster, Providence County, Rhode Island on May 5, 1792. His wife was Martha Wilcox, daughter of Solomon and Mercy (or Mary) Wilcox. Martha was born May 20, 1795 in Foster.[31] Her Wilcox family dates back to the 1500's in Suffolk County, England and can be found on’s OneWorldTree.


George and Martha were married about 1813 in Foster, Rhode Island.[32] They were the parents of Solomon born 1817, Betsey born 1819, Mercy born about 1821, Orrin W. born about 1823, Eliza born 1825 and Hiram W. born 1831, all in Foster, Providence County, Rhode Island.


Census records for Providence County, Rhode Island show George and Martha were living in Foster in 1850 with their son Hiram, age 20. In the 1860 Providence County census, George and Martha were living alone in Foster. George Bennett died September 26, 1869 in Foster.

In the 1870 census (after George’s death) Martha was noted as the head of household with son, Hiram, his wife, Mary, and their children, Herbert, Delpherd (Delford) and Lillian. In 1880 Martha at the age of 85 was living with her 61-year old widowed daughter, Betsey Tyler. Martha died April 23, 1883 in Foster.[33]


Generation 7: Solomon Bennett and Lydia Thurber


Solomon Bennett, son of George Bennett above, was born May 10, 1817 in Foster, Providence County, Rhode Island. He married his second cousin, Lydia Thurber, daughter of Alfred C. and Celia Bennett Thurber, on December 10, 1840 according to family records. Lydia Thurber was born January 1,1823 either in Connecticut or Providence County, Rhode Island.[34] Her family had moved to Pennsylvania when she was a young child. It is unknown how or when she met her cousin, Solomon. Had Solomon moved to Pennsylvania with Bennett kin, or was Lydia visiting her extended family in Rhode Island? While it is intriguing to speculate on all the possibilities, lets continue with what we do know about Solomon and Lydia.


Sometime before 1848 they had moved to Nicholson Township, Wyoming County,[35] Pennsylvania where they joined a large extended family on both the Bennett and Thurber lines. Readers may recall that Isaac Bennett and his two nephews, Ishmael and Thomas, Jr. of Wyoming Massacre fame, had settled in the Valley at least by the mid 1770's.[36] Ishmael migrated on to Ohio, but he had a large family, and some of his sons remained in Pennsylvania. Thomas and Isaac Bennett lived out their lives and died in the Wyoming Valley of Luzerne County. Thomas married Martha Jackson and had several children, at least two of whom had descendants of the same age group in Luzerne County when Solomon and Lydia migrated from Rhode Island. Isaac Bennett also had a large family, and some of his descendants remained in Luzerne County. Thomas Jr.’s grandson, George Bennett, moved to Fairfield Township, Lycoming County, Pennsylvania in 1840 not too far from where the Rogers lived. Lydia Thurber’s sister, Mary, and her brother, Daniel, also settled and died in Pennsylvania.


Solomon and Lydia lived in Wyoming County, Pennsylvania for 11 to 14 years where Solomon made his living as a carpenter. The Bennett trail then picks up in Iowa County, Wisconsin where the family was enumerated in the 1860, 1870 and 1880 federal censuses. In the 1860 Wisconsin Federal Census Solomon and Lydia were living in the town of Clyde, and Solomon was working as a carpenter. In the 1870 census he was a miller in the town of Wyoming, and in the 1880 census a blacksmith in Avoco.

Researching Solomon and Lydia’s children has been a genealogical challenge complicated by the fact that some of them had nicknames that really stuck. It seems the family historians never knew their real names. Below are the children of Solomon and Lydia which represents my best (but possibly inadequate) detective work:


Alfred Bennett, born 1843 in Rhode Island, homesteaded in Eagle Township, Brule County, Dakota Territory in 1885.[37] He married Bertha Weber[38] November 21, 1876. Alfred and Bertha had only one known child, Harley S. Bennett. Bertha died in 1916, and Alfred died February 9,1932 at the home of his son, Harley, in Stratford, Iowa after a 2-day illness.[39] He is buried with Bertha in the Union Cemetery at Bijou Hills, South Dakota.

Celia Ann, born 1844 in Rhode Island, may be the “Clara” listed in the 1860 federal census in Iowa County, Wisconsin although the age is off by two years. The census was taken on August 7, 1680, and Celia died September 8, 1860.[40]

Martha Marie Bennett - see chapter 3.

Mary Eliza Bennett, born 1852 in Pennsylvania, married James Weekly, Rev. B. W. Smith and James Cross. She died February 12, 1921, and is buried in Rapid City, South Dakota.[41]

George Bennett, born 1854 in Pennsylvania, was unmarried. The last record of him is the 1900 Floyd County, Iowa Federal Census where he was noted as living with his brother, Harley W. This George Bennett may be the George Bennett who bought land in the town of Bijou Hills, Brule County, South Dakota and built a second hand store and repair shop.[42] An unidentified record notes that George lived for 40 years in Floyd County, Iowa until his death in 1928. If so, it raises the possibility of yet another George Bennett who was the proprietor of the above mentioned store. George did, however, own a store in Rudd, Iowa so it is possible that he was the owner of the store in Bijou Hills also. 

William R. Bennett, born 1855 in Pennsylvania, migrated to South Dakota where he homesteaded in Eagle Township, Brule County, South Dakota in 1890.[43] He and “Carry” were enumerated in the Charles Mix, Dakota Territory Census in 1885[44] and in Eagle Township, Brule County, South Dakota in 1895.[45] William and Carrie (maiden name unknown) were the parents of

five known children.[46] They returned to Rudd, Floyd County, Iowa where they are listed in the 1920 and 1930 Floyd County, Iowa Federal Census. Their death dates are unknown.

Harland Warren Bennett, (or Warren Harland) born 1859 in Wisconsin, was still unmarried in the 1900 Iowa census. He does not appear in any later census records. Harland and his whereabouts remain a mystery. It is possible he died before the 1910 census.

Alma Ann “ Allie” Bennett, born 1863 in Wisconsin, also migrated to South Dakota sometime between 1883 and 1889. She was married to James Trewartha, but the marriage did not last, and Allie raised her four children and two foster or adopted children by herself. She and her son, Orien, built the Snake Creek Store as noted in chapter 3. She died January 16, 1939, and is buried at Union Cemetery, Bijou Hills under the name of Allie Trewartha.

Betsy Amelia Bennett born 1865 in Wisconsin was also known as Alma, Emily and Ammie. The nicknames in this family have created a great deal of confusion, perhaps no more so than with Betsy who apparently never went by Betsy, and her given name is uncertain. She seems to have been called Alma whereas her sister Alma was called Allie. She was married to Benjamin P. Skewis, a photographer and the family spent a number of years in Minnesota. In the 1900 Minnesota Federal Census she was noted as “Ammie.” An unidentified source notes her name as Betsy Amelia Bennett Skewis in her obituary, but this is unconfirmed as the referenced obituary has not been found by this writer. She died March 3, 1936 in Salem, Oregon.

Lydia Thurber Bennett with sons, George and Harley, Rudd, Iowa, 1897

We don’t know when Solomon and Lydia moved from Wisconsin to Iowa, but the next paper trail is the 1895 Iowa State Census where they were living in the tiny village of Rudd in Floyd County. The 1895 census lists Solomon as a farmer and a Baptist. Solomon and Lydia would have been advanced in years by the time they settled in Rudd, Iowa. Solomon died two years after the 1895 census on November 4, 1897 at Rudd. This photo of Lydia and her sons, George and Harley, must have been taken shortly after Solomon’s death as she holds a picture in her hand which supposedly is a photo of Solomon. In the 1900 Iowa census, Lydia was living with George. She died at Rudd, Iowa on July 13, 1909.


Solomon Bennett



Bennett Store 1920s
This Bennett store isprobably the store owned by George Bennett in Bijou Hills as referenced in a SD State Historical Society Publication. It seems likely that this George Bennett was the son of Solomon and Lydia Bennett, but the identity of the proprietor is unproven.




Solomon & Lydia Bennett Burial Site
Rudd, Iowa




[1]Charles H. Thurber, Sr., “First Thurber in America,” A History of the Thurbers, as posted at

[2]Ursula is identified through the will of her father William White, Suffolk MA Probate Records, 13 October 1673, Vol. 7, and deed of Ursula Bennett dated 17 May 1703 from Stonington Land Records 2:484 as cited in “Descendants of John and Elizabeth (Park) Bennett Who Lived in Rhode Island” by Mrs. Dorothy Bennett Inderkum, Rhode Island Genealogical Register, Vol. 3, No. 2, October 1980, p. 177.

[3]Grace B. Lodder, Genealogical Research on the Bennett Family of the United States and England, unpublished manuscript filmed by LDS Family History Center, May 1986.

[4]Rhode Island Genealogical Register (hereafter RIGR) Vol. 3, No. 2, October 1980 citing Stonington, CT VR1:134 birth record of John Bennett in “Some Descendants of John and Eljzabeth (Park) Bennett Who Lived in Rhode Island,” by Dorothy Bennett Inderkum, p. 177.

[5]U. S. And International Marriage Records, 1560-1900, Yates Publishing, Provo, Utah:, Inc., 2004.

[6]RIGR, Vol. 3, No. 2 p. 177 citing Preston, CT VR 2:18, testate record.

[7]RIGR, Vol. 3, No. 2 p. 177 citing Stonington, CT VR 1:82 birth record.

[8]RIGR, Vol. 3, No. 2, p. 177 citing Preston, CT VR 1:172 marriage record.

[9]RIGR, Vol. 10, Alden G. Beaman, Ed., Princeton, MA: Rhode Island Families Association, 1987, citing Dorothy Bennett Inderkum, “Elder Josiah Bennett of Scituate & Guilford, VT,” p. 240.

[10]RIGR, Vol. 10, pp. 239, 240 referencing Scituate, RI Deed Books, Book 3, pp. 47-49, April 11, 1743; Book 6, p. 646; Book 7, p. 285, Feb. 19, 1769.

[11]John V. Meginness, History of Lycoming County Pennsylvania, 1892, Ch. 51 as posted on Lycoming County, Pennsylvania Web Page.

[12]“The Battle of Wyoming,” as posted on Luzerne County, Pennsylvania Web Page.

[13]Research sources for the Battle of Wyoming history come from “The Battle of Wyoming,” Luzerne County Pennsylvania Web Page; and Henry William Elson, History of the United States of America, New York: The MacMillan Company, 1904, chapter XIV, pp. 292-294.

[14]Charlotte Brennan, (hereafter Brennan) [email protected], Charlotte’s Web, Note: Without Charlotte’s expertise on the Bennett line and her personal research assistance to both myself and Eldon “Bud” Rogers, our line would have only gone back as far as Celia Bennett who married Alfred C. Thurber. Charlotte has researched three groups of Bennetts: Stonington, Connecticut Bennetts; Middleboro, Massachusetts Bennetts; and Fairfield, Connecticut Bennetts. Other groups have been traced to Chester County, Pennsylvania and another group in Maine. All of these groups immigrated in the 1600's; and it is still unknown, by this writer anyway, how or if they were related.

[15]RIGR, Vol. 10 referencing marriage of Josiah Bennett and Sarah Bates in “Elder Josiah Bennett of Scituate & Guilford, VT” by Dorothy Bennett Inderkum, p. 239.

[16]RIGR, Vol. 10, p. 239.

[17]Bruce C. MacGunnigle, Rhode Island Freemen 1747-1755, Maryland: Genealogical Publishing Company, 1977.

[18]1774 Rhode Island Census, p. 115, “Josiah Bennett 1-3-1-2-0-0,” Census Index: Colonial America 1607-1789, FamilyTreeMaker Family Archives, Broderbund Software, Inc. © 1995.

[19]RIGR, Vol. 10, p. 241 citing Guilford, Vermont Deed Books, Book 4, p. 148.

[20]RIGR, Vol. 10, p. 240 citing 1777 Rhode Island military census in “Elder Josiah Bennett of Scituate & Guilford, VT,” by Dorothy Bennett Inderkum.

[21]RIGR, Vol. 10, p. 244 citing Revolutionary War Rolls of Vermont, pp. 151, 412 in “Elder Josiah Bennett of Scituate & Guilford, VT,” by Dorothy Bennett Inderkum.

[22]RIGR, Vol. 10, p. 241 citing Brattleboro, Vermont Probate Records, p. 21 in “Elder Josiah Bennett of Scituate & Guilford, VT,” by Dorothy Bennett Inderkum.

[23] RIGR, Vol. 10, p. 242 referencing will of George Baker in "Elder Josiah Bennett of Scituate & Guilford, VT,” by Dorothy Bennett Inderkum.

[24]1850 Providence County, Rhode Island Federal Census, (town of Foster 188/215 Solomon Bennett 55 farmer CT, Elizabeth 55 RI, Noah 40 farmer CT, Elizabeth H 17 CT). Note: Noah was living with his brother Solomon. Noah may have been unmarried. He also may have been ill in 1850 as he died the next year.

[25]Note: I’ve found no other source for the family living in New London County, Connectucut.

[26], OneWorldTree.

[27]RIGR, Vol. 10, p. 243 citing “Elder Josiah Bennett of Scituate & Guilford, VT,” by Dorothy Bennett Inderkum.



[30] OneWorldTree, Michael Chase [email protected]

[31]Note: Scituate and Foster, Rhode Island may be one and the same place as residence of some of our Bennett residents. Part of Scituate became Foster in 1781.



[34]Note: The birth place for Lydia is questionable because of conflicting census records ranging from Connecticut to Rhode Island to Pennsylvania. Lydia would have been born before the family moved to Pennsylvania. Three census records give birth state as Connecticut and one gives birth state as Rhode Island so Connecticut seems more likely.

[35]Note: Wyoming County was carved out of Luzerne County in 1842.

[36]Note: Another branch of unrelated Bennetts were also in Lycoming County as early as 1825. John and Catherine (Kern) Bennett emigrated from Germany in 1825. They had sons, Charles Edward, John, and George W. as well as several daughters. Serious Bennett genealogists may read more about that line on the Lycoming County Web Project to distinguish the German Bennetts from “our” English Bennetts.

[37]U. S. Dept. of Interior, General Land Office, South Dakota Tract Books, South Dakota State Historical Society, Pierre, SD; (Eagle Twp. Brule Co. Sec. 33, Twp. 101, R59, 160 acres, Alfred W. Bennet, April 11, 1885).

[38]Family records of Ferne Rogers Roggow and other family sources show the name as both Bertha Pike and Bertha Weber. Alfred’s obituary states he married Miss Bertha Weber.

[39]Kimball Graphic, "Obituary ‑ Alfred W. Bennett," Feb. 1932.

[40]Charlotte Brennan, Ancestry World Tree Project: Charlotte’s Web, as viewed May 19, 2006, (Celia born 28 Oct. 1844; died 8 Sept 1860).

[41]The Rapid City Journal, "Obituary ‑ Mrs. Mary Eliza Cross," February 15, 1921.

[42]State Historical Society, “A Short History of Brule County” by John H. Bingham and Nora K. Peters, South Dakota Historical Collections, Pierre, South Dakota: State Publishing Company, p. 176.

[43]Bureau of Land Management Data Base, (SDGENWEB Archives, Federal Land Records), "Electronic," (Bennett, William, Brule Co., SD, Eagle Twp. 101N, R69W, Sec. 23, 160 acres, Patent #15435, Dec. 4, 1890).

[44], 1885 South Dakota Territorial Census, (William Bennett 30 b. PA ED #127, Location ?? Charles Mix, Territory Dakota; and Carry Bennett, 21, b. WI ED #127, Location?? Charles Mix, Territory Dakota).

[45], 1895 South Dakota State Census, (Wm Bennett, Eagle Twp., Brule County).

[46]Note: The 1920 and 1930 censuses show the children born in Iowa (years 1899 to 1908) which is in conflict with other records showing the family in South Dakota during that time frame.


Chapter 6



Thurber: More English Ancestors in Colonial America


The ancestry for Lydia Thurber, whom we met in chapter 5 as the wife of Solomon Bennett, dates back to the 1600's in England. Some Thurber web sites will show the lines much further back, but we will pick up the Thurber history with the immigrant ancestors, John and Priscilla Thurber.


In compiling the Thurber ancestry, I’ve relied heavily on the research of other writers as so footnoted. I am particularly indebted to Florence Thurber Gargaro for the extensive research she has done on the Thurber family, her Thurber and Dow Family Home Page, her generous sharing of resources and her patience in answering numerous questions.


Thurber Origins


The origin of the Thurber family in England is still being researched. Unfortunately a great deal of misinformation about the origins can be found on genealogy web sites. The most often noted, but disproved, origins are Stanton or Market Stainton in Lincolnshire, England about 130 miles from London. Stanton did not exist in Lincolnshire. Apparently Market Stainton was substituted for Stanton by some well-meaning researcher. There is no evidence to support either Stanton or Market Stainton in Lincolnshire as the birth place of John Thurber that I am aware of. An English archivist hired to do Thurber research in Lincolnshire reported that there was a Stanton in Leicestershire, however, which borders Lincolnshire.


 A theory worthy of serious consideration suggested by Gargaro and others is that the Thurber name is a shortened version of the name Thirdborough, Tharborough, Thurburrow or other variant spellings. This quite unusual name is found almost exclusively in Leicestershire, England. Pallot’s Marriage Index for England: 1780-1837 lists Thirdboroughs in Blably, Leire, Barros on Soar and Gilmorton all in Leicestershire. The Free BMD Marriage Index 1837-1983 shows all but one entry for this name located in Leicestershire. The IGI (International Genealogical Index) as posted on also verifies that the name in its several variant spellings was almost exclusively from Leicestershire. The English pronunciation of the name Thurburrow puts less stress on the latter syllables than the American pronunciation which would make the name sound similar to Thurber.


From Gargaro’s research we also learn that the word “thirdborough” means deputy constable or tithingman. A tithingman was the chief man of a tithing/tything or the headborough who presided over the tithing (a group of about ten households). Villages often had several tithings. The tithingman served for a year at a time and was expected to be physically fit enough to maintain order.[1]

Generation 1: John Thurber and Priscilla


John Thurber was born about 1620-1625 in England. He married Priscilla (maiden name unknown)[2] about 1646-1647 in England. Priscilla was born between 1625 and 1627. John and Priscilla were the parents of John born about 1649, Mary born about 1652, Edward born about 1654, Thomas born about 1656, Elizabeth born about 1658, James born 1660 and Charity born about 1663-1664.[3] All were born in England. Because the birth years of some of the children are approximations, the birth order above may have errors. (Some Thurber researchers show an Abigail born 1647. If Abigail was the oldest child, she may have died young as there is no known record of her.)


John Thurber was a Baptist and a religious dissenter because of his refusal to take the Anglican communion or to conform to the tenets of the restored Church of England in 1662. Various acts passed by Parliament between 1661 and 1665 resulted in a hostile religious climate and considerable persecution for dissenters.


Swansea/Rehoboth, Massachusetts


The future home town of John and Priscilla had been purchased in 1641 from the Indians and was first established as the town of Seekonk in 1645. Two other tracts were added between 1641 and 1667. In 1669 Rehoboth covered a very large area including the present town of Rehoboth, Seekonk, Attleborough, parts of Swansey/Swansea and Barrington as well as Pawtucket (now in Providence County, Rhode Island), and the greater part of Warren in Bristol County, Rhode Island.[4] Rehoboth was the largest town in the colony during the colonial era and was a contender for the state capital when Massachusetts received statehood. Rehoboth also had the dubious distinction of being the scene of the commencement of King Philip’s War and was nearly destroyed when the Indians set the town on fire on June 14, 1675.


Rev. John Myles from Swansea, Wales had brought part of his Baptist congregation to Rehoboth, Massachusetts in 1663 and organized the first Baptist Church there. He had left Wales, as did 2000 other independent clergymen, to escape Charles II’s Act of Uniformity which severely restricted practices of the church. Rev. Myles and Capt. Thomas Willett, a trader, shipper and politician, from Leyden, Holland, were the founding fathers of the town of Swansea (misspelled Swanzey on the document naming the town in 1667). The application to become inhabitants of this new town dated February 22, 1669 was signed by both John Thurber and his son, John Thurber,[5] along with 53 other Englishmen


Undocumented sources claim that John, Priscilla and six of their eight children sailed from England to Massachusetts on the ship William and Mary in 1669, and that the remaining two children–Mary and James–came in 1672.[6] (These sources assume a daughter Abigail bringing the number of children to eight rather than the seven shown on John and Priscilla’s Family Group Sheet in this chapter.) There are several problems with the above scenario including the fact that no passenger list for the William and Mary has been found to determine which family members, if any, were on board in 1669. Mary was about 17 and James was 9 years old in 1669, and it seems unlikely that they would have been left in England. It is possible that the eldest son, 20-year old John who was a sailor on a brigantine, was already “at sea” in 1669. Since John, Jr.  was married in England in 1671, if he did not stay in England, then he likely returned there as a sailor. The unconfirmed report that Mary and James came at a later date, of course, is possible, but it is being discarded by this writer unless supporting documentation is found.


 A John Thurburrow is noted as a surveyor of highways in Dartmouth in 1674, a surveyor of highways in Swansea in 1675 and a constable in Swansea in 1677.[7] There were no other known “Thurburrows” in Plymouth Colony at this time in history that could account for a John Thurburrow versus John Thurber. It seems reasonable to conclude that John Thurburrow is the same person as John Thurber, and that the English spelling was used in these records rather than the possible Americanized variant of Thurber.


John initially received Lot 40 at Rehoboth in February 1670/1671 when the land was divided.[8] His son, Capt. John, received Lot 47. Another land record is noted at New Meadow Neck, Rehoboth (which today is part of the town of Barrington, Rhode Island) per quit claim deed from Major William Bradford to John Thurber[9] (date not noted). In another lot drawing on December 24, 1686 John, Sr. received Lots 3 and 4, and Capt. John received Lot 84.[10]


Although John probably emigrated to escape religious persecution in England, he seemed to have considerable trouble conforming to the standards of the Baptist Church in Swansea where he is cited in the church records for various offenses. Transcription of two church entries follow (without spelling changes):

May 6, 1671, “John Therbor propounded and was deferred till he can give a cleerer account of the work of conversion on his soul.”[11]


July 15, 1682, "John Thurber being charged with several evills but especially with a high contempt of the church, when dealing with him for his negligence of meetings and communion; is called to an account this day for the same; and manifested some sorrow for his severall evills the church agree to defer the full determinacion of his case to this day 14night. Upon which day he acknowledged his evills, with relacion to bro Allen, the pastor and the whole church and being admonished against pride, passion, neglect of meetings and exhorted to a more circumspect walking for the future was admitted to continuance of communion."[12]


Priscilla Thurber also was written up in the Swansea church records on January 11, 1680 where it is noted that she proposed and was put off “till we see a further change in her.” Apparently Priscilla’s sins could not have been too grievous because on the following day “Priscilla Thurber was assented to.”[13]


It seems the church was not entirely successful in ridding our immigrant ancestor of his “pride and passion” as on May 8, 1691, John was in trouble again. This time he was the defendant in a defamation suit brought by Hugh Cole of Swanzey. The gist of this suit was that John Thurber, Sr., did “reproach and defame Mr. Cole by calling him a thief and a liar.” Four men mutually agreed upon by Thurber and Cole heard the complaints of the two hostile parties and concluded that Thurber should make public acknowledgment that he had sinned against God and wronged his neighbor. He was further cautioned to keep a ”strict watch over his passions for time to come” and fined twenty shillings as vindication of Mr. Cole’s reputation.[14]


Unfortunately these tidbits of 17th century records give us only a tiny glimpse into the essence of our immigrant ancestor. The records portray both a hot-tempered Baptist as well as a repentant Baptist whose faith must have been very important to him. Whatever his earthly shortcomings, however, we honor John Thurber for establishing the Thurber lineage on American soil long before our nation was a nation.


John’s death year of 1706 is based on a list of inventory signed by his wife, Priscilla, which was dated July, 3,1706. His will was dated December 17, 1705 according to one source,[15] or March 21, 1703/04 according to another.[16] The back of the latter referenced will notes that Priscilla was married to John for 57 years. John bequeathed his carpentering tools to his son, James, which could indicate that both John and James were carpenters.

Before continuing with Generation 2, readers might enjoy this short biography of Capt. John, son of John above and brother to our James:


In 1685 Capt. John Thurber, master of a brigantine, was sailing from Madagascar to America when his ship was blown off course by a storm. He sailed his damaged ship into the harbor of the settlement of colonial Carolina now known as Charleston, South Carolina. Capt. John Thurber expressed his thanks for the kindness of settlers there by giving them about a bushel of seed rice from Madagascar. Rice had been introduced as a crop in the area previously without success. However, when the rice supplied by John Thurber was planted in the rich black soil of swampland in the area, the crop grew well. Within a few years rice was one of the most important crops in South Carolina which led the states in rice production for the next 200 years.[17]

Generation 2: James Thurber and Elizabeth Bliss

Second wife: Elisabeth Toogood (widow of John Bosworth)


James Thurber, son of John and Priscilla Thurber above, was born August 26, 1660 in England. His first wife was Elizabeth Bliss, daughter of Jonathan and [Rachel?] Puffer Bliss, whom he married June 25, 1684 in Rehoboth, Bristol County, Massachusetts. **[18] Elizabeth was born January 29, 1657 at Rehoboth.

** Editor's Note: Originally, this text identified the wife of Jonathan Bliss as Miriam Harmon. However, on March 4, 2007, Florence Thurber Gargaro e-mailed Jean Rosenkranz with the following information:

In February, 2002 Eugene Cole Zubrinsky posted the following on the Bliss board of GenForum:

Given the ease with which genealogical inaccuracies take on a life of their own, robustly surviving in the face of corrections, I hope that by posting this online, it might have a chance of supplanting the error with which it competes.

JONATHAN2 BLISS (1626-1687) was the son of Thomas1 and Dorothy (Wheatlie) Bliss of Braintree and Rehoboth, Mass. The oft-repeated claim that his wife was MIRIAM HARMON is false. She was, in fact, neither a Miriam nor a Harmon; there is no record of a Miriam Harmon in New England during this period. Jonathan2 Bliss's wife was almost certainly a daughter of George PUFFER of Braintree, Mass., probably named RACHEL. For a complete discussion of the factors that led to this misidentification and the evidence supporting its correction, see NEHGR 151(1997):32-37.

Eugene is a respected and reliable genealogist and his article in The New England Historical and Genealogical Register presents a pretty thorough look at this matter.

Florence Thurber Gargaro


James and Elizabeth were the parents of Elizabeth (possible twin of James, Jr.), James, Jr. born March 3, 1865, John born 1686, Rachel born 1688, Elizabeth born 1690, Bethia born 1692, Jonathan born 1695, Prizzell (Priscilla) born 1697, Samuel born 1700 and Edward born 1702.[19] All of these children were born at Rehoboth.


Records are scare for James in Rehoboth, but he is noted in Proprietors and Inhabitants of the Town of Rehoboth as having rights and titles to the measuages (dwellings) tenements and lands in a quit‑claim deed given to William Bradford to James dated February 7, 1689.[20]

As noted previously, James inherited his father’s carpentering tools so James may have been a carpenter by trade.


Elizabeth Bliss Thurber died June 19, 1723 in Rehoboth. The Bliss family was well known in colonial Massachusetts, and their long line of English ancestors can be found on


On February 18, 1724 James married Elizabeth Toogood, widow of John Bosworth, in Rehoboth. Elizabeth was born July 25, 1682 and died on June 7, 1773 in Barrington, Bristol County, Rhode Island.[21] She was the daughter of Nathaniel Toogood.


James Thurber died March 26, 1736 in Rehoboth, Bristol County, Massachusetts.[22]


Generation 3: Samuel Thurber and Rachel Wheeler

Second and third wives: Lydia Singletary and Welthian Sheldon Williams Tourtellot


Samuel, son of James above, was born August 26, 1700 in Rehoboth, Bristol County, Massachusetts. He and Rachel Wheeler filed their intention to marry on August 4, 1722. The marriage ceremony was performed by Reverend David Turner on December 27, 1722 in Rehoboth.[23] Rachel was the daughter of James and Grizzelle Squire Wheeler. Rachel’s English ancestry can also be found on for those wishing to learn more about the Wheeler family.


Nine known children were born to Samuel and Rachel: Samuel, Jr. born 1724, James born 1726, Rachel born 1728, John born 1730 and died 1733, Mary born 1732 and died 1736, Benjamin born 1734, Mary born 1736, Daniel born 1738 and Hezekiah born 1741 all in Rehoboth. Rachel died June 19, 1755 in Rehoboth and is buried with Samuel in the North Burial Cemetery in Providence, Massachusetts.


The family had moved from Rehoboth, Massachusetts to Providence, Rhode Island at least by 1757 where he is on record in the 1757 Ratable List and again in the 1774 census in Providence County.[24] He was a yeoman which in colonial times was a farmer who owned land above a certain value and who was entitled to serve on a jury. Not surprising, Samuel was a member of the First Baptist Church in Providence.[25]


On November 9, 1756 Samuel married Lydia Singletary of Sutton, Worcester County, Massachusetts.[26] Lydia was 59 years old when she married Samuel. Although she and Samuel did not have children together, he must have had a good relationship with her children as he bequeathed to heirs of his late second wife, Lydia Thurber. Lydia died July 12, 1769 in Rehoboth and is buried with Samuel in the North Burial Cemetery in Providence.


North Burial Ground, Providence, MA
Final resting place of Samuel Thurber and two of his wives, Rachel Wheeler and Lydia Singletary.
Photo by Linda Marra posted on Thurber Genealogy Web Site.

Thirdly, Samuel married the twice widowed Welthian Sheldon Williams Tourtellot on May 27, 1772 at Warwick, Rhode Island. The marriage ceremony was performed by Elder Charles Holden. Welthian’s first husband was John Williams and her second husband was Abraham Tourtellot.[27] Samuel predeceased Welthian. An abstract of Samuel’s will from Providence Probate 6-539, Docket A1230 and inventory of personal property follows:


Samuel Thurber of Providence, yeoman, being advanced in years - will - debts and funeral charges to be paid...heirs of my second wife, Lydia Thurber, late deceased in equal well beloved present wife sons Samuel, James Benjamin, Daniel, Hezekia...daughters Rachel Martin and Mary two grandsons-in-law Silas Covel and Olney Winsor Joint executors...8 Nov. 1785...witnesses Ben Covell, Joseph Burrill Jr., Squire Thurber...proved 6 Feb. 1788.


Probate record 6-541 inventory of personal property Mr. Samuel Thurber of Providence deceased 20th Dec. 1785 and taken Jan. 16, 1788...”[28]


As noted, Samuel died on December 20, 1785, and he is buried with his first two wives in the North Burial Ground, Providence, Rhode Island where a granite monument marks the burial.


Generation 4: Daniel Thurber and Lois Peck


Daniel Thurber, son of Samuel above, was born June 30, 1738 at Rehoboth, Bristol County, Massachusetts.[29] He married Lois Peck at Rehoboth on October 9, 1760; marriage intention was posted on September 13, 1760.[30] Lois was born August 1, 1741 to Thomas and Deliverance (May) Peck, at Rehoboth.[31]


Daniel and Lois were the parents of Nathaniel born 1761, Polly born 1763, Daniel, Jr. born 1766, Lois born 1768, Chloe born 1771, Lydia born 1775 or 1776, Della born 1777, Nancy born 1780, and Abel born 1783 all at Rehoboth. Rehoboth was home to Daniel and Lois all of their married life. The family was enumerated in Rehoboth, Bristol County, Massachusetts in 1790 and 1800. Like his father, Daniel was a yeoman.


Descendants of Daniel claim he took part in the Revolutionary War. If so, he is probably the Daniel Thurber on record in “A Census of Pensioners for Revolutionary or Military Services.[32]


In Daniel’s will of December 16, 1803 he bequeathed to his wife, Lois; his sons, Nathaniel, Daniel and Abel; and his daughters, Lydia, wife of Obadiah Wheelock, Polly Thurber, Chloe Thurber and Nancy Thurber. This will was proved April 3, 1804 with Abel Thurber as executor.[33]


Daniel died February 8, 1804,[34] and Lois died March 25, 1812. They are buried in the Burial Place Hill Cemetery at Rehoboth, Massachusetts.


A brief biography of Daniel and Lois’ son, Daniel, Jr., who was a prominent physician at Rehoboth, is included in Notable Thurbers as Appendix D. The Thurber Medical Association was named in honor of Dr. Thurber after his death.


Generation 5: Nathaniel Thurber and Polly Shores

Second wife: Mary Paine


Nathaniel, son of Daniel above, was born April 13, 1761 at Rehoboth, Bristol County, Massachusetts.[35] Nathaniel married Polly Shores (noted in some records as Mary Polly Shores) on May 20, 1792[36] in Rehoboth, ceremony performed by Stephen Bullock, Esq. Polly was born June 17, 1766, daughter of Zephaniah and Lydia Codding Shores. Nathaniel and Polly were the parents of Alfred born1792, Lydia born about 1796, Alice born between 1796 and 1800 and Daniel born 1803.[37]


At the young age of 15, Nathaniel became a private in the Revolutionary War. He served from 1776 until 1779 and took part in the battle of the Burning of Bristol, Rhode Island.[38] His name was on an oath of allegiance to the commonwealth list of persons who took the oath and delivered up their arms during March 1787. Nathaniel is also on record for a military pension from the State of Rhode Island commencing March 4, 1831.[39] To further substantiate his military service, a brief excerpt from the autobiography of Nathaniel’s grandson, Albert King Thurber, follows:


My grandfather was in the Revolutionary War. When I was but six years of age, he took me by the hand and walked out south of the city of Providence, and showed me earthworks (rifle pits), which he assisted in throwing up to resist the threatened raid of the British forces that were lying at Newport, and intending to land between that place and Providence, and march into the interior.[40]


Polly died at the age of 45 per engraving on the Thurber tombstone. Either her age was incorrect or her birth date is incorrect. We can be certain that she died sometime between the birth of her last child in 1803 and Nathaniel’s remarriage to Mary Paine on April 9, 1808 in Rehoboth. This ceremony was performed by Rev. John Hill. Nathaniel and Mary had a son, Nathaniel, Jr.


The census trail for Nathaniel places him in Rehoboth, Bristol County, Massachusetts in 1800; in Foster, Providence County, Rhode Island in 1810 and 1820;and in Warwick Township, Kent County, Rhode Island in 1830. The numbers and ages of people in these pre-1850 censuses often does not mesh as well as we would like with the ages and number of people we “assume” should be in the household. That is a common occurrence, though, in an age when the household often consisted of elderly parent (s) or orphaned children of a relative or neighbor. In both the 1800 and 1810 census there is an older female enumerated in Nathaniel’s household. This could possibly be Polly’s widowed mother. In the 1840 census Nathaniel, Jr. was living in Killingly, Windham County, Connecticut with his young family, and apparently Nathaniel and Mary were living in his household. This fits with the Charles H. Thurber biography of Nathaniel Thurber in which he states Nathaniel died at the home of a son in or near Killingly, Connecticut at about 85 years of age.[41]


Following along with the extant records, particularly the census, we can make some reasonable conclusions (although unproven) about where the children were born. Nathaniel and Polly were married at Rehoboth, Massachusetts in 1792, and Nathaniel and Mary Paine were also “of Rehoboth” when they were married in 1808. If Nathaniel lived continuously in Rehoboth from 1792 to 1808, the children would have been born in Massachusetts with the possible exception of Nathaniel, Jr. as his birth year is estimated to be about 1810. In the 1810 census Nathaniel was living in Foster, Providence County, Rhode Island.


Let’s look more closely at the census records to see if the hypothesis that the children were born in Massachusetts holds up since there’s a mixed bag of information floating around on the internet citing Rhode Island, Connecticut and Massachusetts for the various birth places of the children. The 1860 and 1870 census lists Alfred born in Massachusetts whereas the 1850 census lists him born in Rhode Island. Lydia is not listed in the 1850 census in the household of her husband, Arnold W. Sweet, so we can assume she died before 1850. Her premature death makes it impossible to check the birth state for her by means of the census. Alice Thurber Johnson was found in only one census, but that census does list her born in Massachusetts.[42] Daniel Thurber with his wife Rebecka were in the 1850 and 1880 Rhode Island censuses showing Daniel’s birth state as Massachusetts. The census records, then, do support the birth of the children from Alfred through Daniel as being born in Massachusetts.


Nathaniel died November 2, 1848 at the home of Nathaniel, Jr., as previously noted, near Killingly, Windham County, Connecticut. Both he and Polly are buried in the Burial Place Hill Cemetery at Rehoboth, Massachusetts.[43]


Generation 6: Alfred C. Thurber and Celia (Selah) Bennett


Alfred C. Thurber, son of Nathaniel above, was born September 28 or 29, 1792[44] in Bristol County, Massachusetts. He married his second cousin, Celia or Selah Bennett, who was born 1799-1800 probably in Connecticut although some sources list Rhode Island as the birth place. She was the daughter of Josiah and Sarah Baker Bennett whose biography is found in chapter 5. No date has been found for the marriage of Alfred and Celia, but since their first child was born in 1817-1818, we can assume the marriage occurred about 1817. We can also guess that they were married in Windham County, Connecticut where the bride lived since she was a teenager when married and probably still living at home.


Alfred and Celia were the parents of Samuel born about 1817-1818, Abel born 1819, Lydia born 1823, Theodore born 1825, Mary born 1829, and Daniel born 1837. Census records, once again, prove valuable in tracing the migration route of Alfred and Celia as we follow the birth states of the children. Samuel and Abel were born in Windham County, Connecticut. It is unclear from census records whether the family was still in Connecticut in 1823 when Lydia was born or if they had moved to Providence County, Rhode Island by then. Their fourth child, Theodore W., was born in Rhode Island in 1825. Sometime before the birth of Mary in 1829, they had moved to Abington Township, Luzerne County, Pennsylvania.


Census records show Alfred enumerated in Abington Township, Luzerne County in 1830; in Nicholson Township, Luzerne County in 1840; and in Nicholson Township, Wyoming County, Pennsylvania in 1850. Wyoming County was carved out of Luzerne County in 1842 so a county boundary change probably accounts for Alfred being in Wyoming County in 1850 rather than an actual move. Alfred was noted as a lumberman in the 1850 census.


By 1855 Alfred and Celia had moved to Iowa County, Wisconsin where Alfred purchased 80 acres of farm land.[45] In 1858 he purchased another 40 acres.[46]


The census trail picks up Alfred, “Cila” and Daniel in the 1860 census in the town of Clyde, Iowa County, Wisconsin. On this census Alfred was working as a farmer, and Daniel was working as a farm laborer. In the 1870 Iowa County census Alfred and Celia were enumerated under the name of “Shurber,” an error resulting in many new gray hairs for this genealogist.


All four of the Thurber sons followed their parents to Iowa County, Wisconsin. Abel lived in Clyde until 1884 when he moved to Lone Rock, Wisconsin where he died the following year. Mary married William Driggs in Pennsylvania on August 18, 1853, and the young husband died four months later.[47] She remarried Lewis Jackson and is buried with Lewis and their son, John, in the Thurber Cemetery, Clyde Township, Iowa County, Wisconsin. Daughter Lydia’s marriage to Solomon Bennett and their family is narrated as Generation 7 in the Bennett chapter 4.


Alfred died November 8, 1875 at the age of 83 years, 1 month and 10 days according to the tombstone transcription in the Thurber Cemetery, Iowa County, Wisconsin.[48] The death date and age calculate to a birth date of September 29, 1792 which conflicts with other sources which show September 28, 1795. The 1860 and 1870 census records showing his age as 68 and 78 supports the 1792 birth year taking into account that the August enumeration date of the census was a few weeks shy of Alfred’s birthday.


Celia Bennett Thurber died in 1879 at the age of 79 years and 7 months according to the Thurber cemetery transcription. A search of the Wisconsin Pre-1907 Death Index and Iowa County Register of Deeds did not yield a death record for either Alfred or Celia, but the search continues.


The Thurber cemetery has only 16 graves on record. The “newest” burial is 1914 so it is not surprising that it reportedly is not maintained. Information from the Iowa County Genealogy Society notes that it is hidden in the trees on a knoll between roads and cannot be seen from the main road. One must walk through a cow pasture to find it. That sounds like a challenge for genealogists who take pride in tracking ancestors in remote cemeteries. The cemetery legal description, for the information of any reader who wishes to accept the challenge, is the NE corner of SE1/4 of SW1/4, SEC 27, T8R2 (off county Highway NN in Clyde township).


[1]Letter from Florence Thurber Gargaro with supporting sources, April 12, 2006.

[2]Note: One can find several maiden names for Priscilla posted on The most common listing is Priscilla Allen or Alden, born 1659, daughter of John Allen/Aldren and Elizabeth Bacon. John Thurber, however, was married to Priscilla long before the birth of Priscilla Allen in 1659. (This research done by Florence Gargaro from History of Monmouth and Ocean County, New Jersey by Edwin Salter.)

[3]Charles H. Thurber, Sr., History of the John Thurber Family, Book E, (hereafter Thurber Book E) p. 6, unpublished manuscript, microfilmed by LDS Family History Center May 4, 1993. Sources cited are Blanding Public Library, Rehoboth, Massachusetts; Barrington Public Library, Barrington, Rhode Island; Rhode Island Genealogy and Biography, Vol. 2, pt. 2, p. 1053; Old Family Records, Boston Transcript #3739.

[4]Leonard Bliss, Jr., The History of Rehoboth, Bristol County, Massachusetts Comprising a History of the Present Towns of Rehoboth, Seekonk, and Pawtucket, from Their Settlement to the Present Time; Together with Sketches of Attleborough, Cumberland, and a Part of Swansey and Barrington, to the Time That They Were Severally Separated from the Original Town, (hereafter History of Rehoboth) Boston: Otis, Broaders, 1836 as posted at Rehoboth Area, Bristol County, Massachusetts History (database online). Provo, Utah:, Inc., 2004.

[5]Otis Olney Wright, “Early Settlers of Swansea, Bristol Co., MA” extracted from History of Swansea, Massachusetts, 1667-1917, published by the town of Swansea, 1917 as posted on

[6]Thurber Book E, p. 5. Note: Other sources show 1771 as immigration year.

[7]Genealogical Records: Early New England Settlers, 1600's-1800's, Peirce’s Colonial Lists, Plymouth Colony, Bristol County, pp. 30, 33, 35, © My, Inc., as viewed March 27, 2006.

[8]Charles H. Thurber, “First Thurber in America,” (hereafter First Thurber...) A History of the Thurbers as posted at as viewed August 20, 2001.

[9]Thurber Book E, p. 5.

[10]“First Thurber...”

[11]Swansea Baptist Church Records, p. 33 as posted on New England Historic Genealogical Society web site.

[12]Ibid. p. 41, 42.

[13]Ibid. p. 41.

[14]John N. Cole “The Coles of Cole’s Hill © 1994, as posted on Thurber Genealogy web page, information provided by Cheri Branca.

[15]Thurber Book E, p. 5.

[16]Alfred Edward Thurber, Thurber Family Genealogy, unpublished manuscript, p. 1, LDS FHL #0928330, Salt Lake City, Utah.

[17]Encyclopedia Americana “rice;” and The American History of Thirteen Colonies (American Heritage, 1967) as posted on Thurber Genealogy web page by Florence Thurber Gargaro.

[18]Clarence E. Peirce, compiler, "Genealogical records compiled in the 1930's and available at the Rhode Island Historical Society," (hereafter RIHS records, Pierce) Unpublished manuscript.

[19]James Savage, Genealogical Dictionary of the First Settlers of New England, Vol. IV, p. 295 as posted at

[20]History of Rehoboth, p. 128.

[21] Florence Thurber Gargaro, letter of March 27, 2006 citing Swansea Vital Records from New England Historic Genealogical Society.

[22]RIHS records, Pierce.

[23]Thurber Book E, p. 9.

[24]Census Index: Colonial America 1607‑1789, (Reproduced on Family Archive CD #310), "CD‑ROM," Samuel Thurber Providence Co., RI, 1757 Ratable List, and 1774 census 2-3-2-0-0-0, Providence County, RI, p. 51.

[25]RIHS records, Pierce.

[26]Charles H. Thurber, History of the John Thurber Family Book N, p. 30, citing History of Sutton, Massachusetts 1704‑1876, p. 368 (MR Samuel Thurber of Rehoboth, Mass. to Lydia Singletary on Nov. 9, 1756).

[27]Thurber Book E, p. 10.

[28]Providence Probate Records 6‑539, Docket A1230 and 60541 cited in Clarence E. Peirce, compiler, "Genealogical records compiled in the 1930's and available at the Rhode Island Historical Society," unpublished manuscript.

[29]Rehoboth Vital Records, p. 753, as posted on Thurber and Dow Family Home Page, (

[30] Rehoboth Vital Records, p. 285, as posted on Thurber and Dow Family Home Page (

[31]Rehoboth Vital Records, p. 705, as posted on Thurber and Dow Family Home Page, (

[32]United States Census Office, A Census of Pensioners for Revolutionary or Military Services, 1841, p. 57 Reprint. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1965.

[33]RIHS records, Pierce citing Bristol Co., MA Probate Records 40‑356, will of Daniel Thurber of Rehoboth, yeoman, dated 15 Dec. 1803 and proved 3 April 1804.

[34]Charles H. Thurber, Daniel Thurber Tombstone Photo, (hereafter Tombstone - Daniel Thurber) as posted on Thurber Genealogy Web Site, Burial Hill Cemetery, Rehoboth, Massachusetts, (Father ‑ Daniel Thurber 66, Nathaniel 87, Mother Lois Peck 71, Polly 45, Chloe 73, Nancy 83, Abel 82, Polly Bullock 63).

[35]Rehoboth Vital Records, p. 754, as posted on Thurber and Dow Family Home Page, (

[36]Vital Records of Rehoboth, 1642‑1896, Rehoboth Vital Record 4:236 (, "Electronic," (Polly Shores, Rehoboth, Nathaniel Thurber, Rehoboth, 20 May 1792 by Stephen Bullock, Esq.).

[37]Note: some sources list James born in 1790 or 1791 in this family. A literature review of the known information about James, (including a story about his funeral from a Carthage, Illinois newspaper of November 23, 1877) seems to rule him out as a child of Nathaniel and Polly Thurber.

[38]United States Census of Pensions of Revolution and Military Service, 1840, p. 57 cited in The History of Rehoboth, Bristol County, Massachusetts, by Leonard Bliss, Jr. (Boston: Otis, Broaders, 1836 as posted at Rehoboth Area, Bristol County, Massachusetts History (data base online). Provo, Utah: Inc., 2004, p. 159.

[39]Alfred Edward Thurber, "Thurber Family Genealogy," unpublished manuscript, LDS FHL #0928330, Salt Lake City, Utah, p. 142, (citing Rhode Island Pension Roll, p. 39, Nathaniel Thurber, Private, Annual allowance 31.66, Service in Mass. Militia. Placed on Roll Mar 13, 1834 commencement of pension Mar. 4, 1831).

[40]Florence Thurber Gargaro, Famous and Interesting Thurbers as posted on Thurber and Dow Family Home Page. Note: Albert King was the son of Daniel and Rebecca Rhodes Hill Thurber.

[41]Thurber Book E, p. 47.

[42]Department of Commerce and Labor, Bureau of the Census, 1860 Massachusetts Federal Census, p. 98, (Milford, Worcester County 497/717 Alvan Johnson 72 MA, Alice B. 63 MA).

[43]Tombstone ‑ Daniel Thurber, (Father ‑ Daniel Thurber 66, Nathaniel 87, Mother Lois Peck 71, Polly 45, Chloe 73, Nancy 83, Abel 82, Polly Bullock 63).

[44]RIHS records - Peirce shows birth year for Alfred as 1802; Charles H. Thurber, History of the John Thurber Family, Book E, p. 107 shows Sept 28, 1795. The cemetery inscription of age and date of death calculates to 29 Sept 1792. Census records of 1860 and 1870 support the 1792 birth year.

[45]Bureau of Land Management (BLM) ‑ General Land Office Records, BLM Land Patent #67 ‑ Alfred C. Thurber, Certificate #19754, issue date November 10, 1855, 80 acres, S1/2 of SW, Sec 27, T8N, R2E, 4th PM 1831 MN/WI, Iowa Co, WI, Mineral Point Land Office.

[46]BLM Land Patent #242 ‑ Alfred C. Thurber, Certificate #26037, issue date June 1, 1858, 40 acres, NW1/4, SW1/4 of Sec 27, T8N, R2E, Iowa Co, WI, Mineral Point Land Office.

[47]Edmund West, Compiler, Family Data Collection ‑ Individual Records, (, Provo, Utah: 2000), "Electronic," Mary Thurber and William Driggs Marriage of 18 August 1853.

[48]Iowa County Genealogical Society, Cheryl Schmidt, President, e-mail transcription, March 27, 2006.


Chapter 7



From Weavers to Building Movers


The following was contributed by J. Rogers Woolston and draws heavily on a family history compiled by his aunt, Florence Rogers Friedrich in 1937, as well as on verbal history passed to him by his mother, Edna Rogers Woolston.


Of the many occupations that existed in the 19th century that of moving large houses and buildings must be considered unique, but that is what three members of the Rogers family in Allentown, New Jersey became famous for in the late 19th century. Their expertise in this unusual line of work extended throughout New Jersey and as far south as Washington, DC.


The house movers were descendants of Samuel Rogers (1760-1828) who, as described more fully in chapter 2, immigrated to America from England in the summer of 1801 together with his wife, Ann (Nancy) Gaunt Rogers (1762-1823) and nine of their children. Samuel and Ann produced a total of eighteen children. The twelfth was Benjamin Rogers (1797-1851), who was just four years old when he arrived in Philadelphia.


 In the spring of 1802 Samuel and Ann moved their family to the forks of the Loyalsock Creek in northeastern Pennsylvania, where young Benjamin matured, marrying Gittyann Bowne (1804-1860) in 1820 when she was just sixteen. He and Gittyann raised a family of thirteen children, but as a group they faired poorly–four died under the age of two, and only three, Benjamin II (1832-1897), Elias (1835-1920), Caleb C. (1838-1911), survived to old age. It seems that tuberculosis was responsible for the early deaths of many of them.


In 1852, following the death of her husband the previous year, Gittyann moved from Forksville with four of her children to Allentown, New Jersey. These included Benjamin II, Elias, Caleb and Gittyann Bowne Rogers (1843-1862 – same name as her mother). The reason for the move is not known, but it may have been a belief that the “air” was better there.


Shortly after moving to Allentown, young Benjamin and Elias formed a carpentry business which flourished. Caleb soon moved to nearby Trenton, New Jersey, where he also entered the carpentry trade. In 1859 the two brothers who remained in Allentown bought land on High Street (in Allentown) on which they built a large wood-working shop. The firm, of which Benjamin was the senior member, was known as E.B & B. Rogers. It was during this year that the brothers contracted to build the Allentown Methodist Church for the sum of $5000.00. Twenty years later they were contracted to build the Allentown Baptist Church and parsonage for $7200.00, including $2500.00 for the land, $3700.00 to build the church and $1000.00 to build the parsonage. The contract called for a church to be built including two coats of paint, both inside and out, and for the pews to be varnished.


The brothers donated liberally to the church. Because of Benjamin’s great interest in the church, in 1906, nine years after his death, his son, Benjamin Franklin Rogers, and his brother Elias (BFR’s uncle) gave an individual communion service to the church in his memory. Twenty-one years later, in 1927, Benjamin II’s daughter-in-law and his two granddaughters (one of whom was to become J. Rogers Woolston’s mother), together with the Bible Class of the Allentown Baptist Church, dedicated a memorial stained-glass window in memory of the two brothers, Benjamin II and Elias, in recognition of their faithful service.


It is not certain just when the two brothers, Benjamin II and Elias, moved their first house or where, but by 1880 they were definitely in the house-moving business. As young Benjamin Franklin Rogers grew into his teens he began helping his father and uncle in their adopted trade, and in 1897, upon the death of Benjamin II, the firm name was changed to “E.B. & B.F. Rogers”. The gentleman in this photo is certainly one of the Rogers brothers.


One must remember that in the late 19th century “horsepower” was just that–the four-footed kind. There were no diesel engines or tractors. Also, there were no pneumatic tires as we know them today. Of course, there were few if any overhead power or telephone wires to contend with either! It seems astonishing that with nothing but timbers, wooden rollers, hemp ropes and horses and mules, huge houses and heavy brick buildings were routinely moved by the Rogers brothers. Neither of them had had any formal mechanical or civil engineering training; they were apparently self-educated in this complex endeavor. And they were entrepreneurs; they advertised their business and included such phrases as:


Leave everything in your house as it is.

Place a full tumbler of water on your dining room table and it will not spill a drop!

Your grandfather clock will not skip a beat!


The Rogers were certainly not the first men to ever move large structures; indeed there are records of buildings being moved in London as early as the late 16th century, and it is very possible that the Rogers, who came from England, may have been aware of some of the techniques used from tales passed down from their ancestors. And there were other men doing similar work in America at about the same time, notably in New England.


Their technique consisted of first cutting holes through the foundation and passing very large, long timbers through them, extending out both front and back, as well as side to side. These were used to gently lift the building off its original foundation using large cast iron jacks. The old foundation underneath was then largely removed and replaced with more timbers laid in the direction in which the building was to be moved with wooden rollers placed between the two sets of timbers. The building was then lowered onto the rollers and it was ready to go. The actual moving force was provided by long, heavy hawsers about two inches in diameter attached to the upper timbers and fed several turns around vertical, wooden capstans mounted on bases about four feet square staked down into the dirt road, perhaps 200 feet away. Each capstan was then turned by a horse or mule walking in a circle around it pulling on a pole fed through a hole in the top end of the capstan. A young boy, often African-American (“darky boys”, as they were often called then) squatted alongside the capstan and took up the hawser as it came off the turning capstan and coiled it on the ground. Another young boy had the task of leading the horse around the capstan. The horses had to be trained to step over the hawser when they came to it. At least two and sometimes four such hawsers and capstans were used to move the building.                     


Meanwhile, as the building moved, the rollers emerged at the rear and had to be picked up and carried to the front and placed between the timbers there. This job also was often done by young boys hired for the purpose. One of the Rogers brothers (and later on, young B.F. Rogers), usually on horseback, would supervise the whole operation, giving orders to, “Take up there”! or “Hold back there”! When the building came up close to the capstans, the moving would be halted while they “pulled up stakes” and reset the capstans further down the road.


When the building arrived at its new location, where a new foundation had already been prepared, the reverse of the original procedure was followed; i.e., jacks were again used to lift the building slightly, the lower timbers were removed, and the building was then lowered onto its new foundation. The supporting timbers could then be dragged out and the foundation holes closed. Mission accomplished!


While most of the buildings moved by the Rogers were houses, often quite large, not all were. One time the firm was hired to move the concrete and brick vault of a bank containing all its contents, sans the bank building itself. For this they hired armed guards who rode on horseback alongside the vault as it was moved. Some buildings were just too large to be moved intact and were therefore cut completely apart into separate pieces for the move and were then reassembled at the new site. One must remember that in 1900 these buildings had no electrical wiring and few pipes to contend with, so dismembering them was easier than it would be today.


In 1908 the firm of E.B. & B.F. Rogers was dissolved and Benjamin Franklin Rogers, now 38, bought his uncle’s half-interest in the tract of land, the shop, and all the outbuildings on it on High Street in Allentown from his uncle Elias, now 73. Elias had not been active in the business for several years. For all this he paid $250.00. Benjamin also purchased his uncle’s interest in the moving materials, and the business was now known simply as “B.F. Rogers – Building Mover.”


Because at the turn of the 20th century Princeton University in Princeton, New Jersey (having recently–in 1896–changed its name from The College of New Jersey) was in a period of rapid expansion, the Rogers firm found much work to do in that college town for many years. The University had purchased most of the land and buildings on the southeast side of Nassau Street and wanted to build dormitories, eating halls, and classroom buildings where many beautiful, stately mansions stood. Rather than destroy these houses, the Rogers were hired to move them to nearby open sites, many on Bayard Lane at the southwest end of Nassau Street. Among them is the present Peacock Inn.


They had so much work to do in Princeton at that time that they purchased an empty lot on Williams Street to store their moving materials–timbers, rollers, capstans, jacks, hawsers, etc. Since they were also hired to do much moving in the city of Trenton, they also bought a lot there at the corner of William and Lilly Streets for the same purpose. They also moved many buildings in Asbury Park, New Jersey and other New Jersey communities. In 1915 B.F. Rogers was hired to move a building in Washington, DC. He took his wife, Elizabeth Robbins Tilton Rogers (1872-1945) and his 14-year old daughter, Edna Lavenia Rogers (1901-1992) with him for two weeks. His younger daughter, Florence Elizabeth Rogers (1907-1969) stayed with her grandmother, Catharine Imlay Robbins (1843-1921).


In May 1916 B.F. Rogers suffered a bad 12-foot fall at the Wall Rope Works where he was moving a building. He was taken to Mercer Hospital in Trenton where he lived for three days. He died of gangrene poisoning despite the fact that his badly damaged arm was amputated. He left a wife, aged 44, and two daughters, 14 and 9, but no will.


His obituary from the Allentown Messenger read:


Benjamin Franklin Rogers, the well known building mover, died at Mercer Hospital, Trenton N.J. Tuesday Morning, May 2, 1916, about 8 o’clock from injuries received from a fall at Beverly N.J. on Friday April 28, 1916.

Mr. Rogers was engaged in a dangerous and difficult job of building moving at Beverly on which one of his men, William Ashby, had previously been hurt, while Kenneth Lamb and Ashby, both of Allentown, narrowly escaped serious injury along with their employer last Friday. As it was Mr. Rogers fell a distance of 12 feet, badly bruising one of his hips and no doubt injuring himself internally, being caught by a large timber and having his right arm broken in three places below the elbow. He was at once taken to Mercer Hospital.

It was at first thought that not only his arm but his life would be saved, and he appeared quite comfortable and saw many of his friends on Saturday and Sunday.

By Monday night however his arm was in very bad condition, and it was found necessary to operate with small hope of saving his life.

His arm was taken off at the shoulder, and he was conscious for a little while after the operation (performed by Dr. Oliphant), but the end came about 9 o’clock A.M.

Mr. Rogers was the son of Benjamin Rogers Senior and Lavenia Cubberley Rogers. He was born in Allentown N.J. July 12, 1870, starting in as a boy with his father and uncle, carpenters and building movers. He later succeeded to the extensive business started by that firm. His operations took him largely to Princeton N.J. where he did all the moving for Princeton University, and to Asbury Park, while he was frequently engaged in large jobs in other states. He was moving a large stone building for the government in Washington D.C. at the time of his death.

On June 24, 1897 he married Elizabeth Robbins Tilton of Allentown, by whom, with their two children Edna and Florence, he is survived. His only brother, Harry Mortimer Rogers, lives at Tenafly N.J.

In his early life he joined the First Baptist Church of Allentown of which he has been an active and consistent member. At the time of his death he was financial secretary. He was also a member of the American Mechanics and the local fire company.

Relatives and friends are invited to attend the funeral at Allentown Baptist Church Friday May 5 at 11 o’clock. Interment in the Allentown Presbyterian Cemetery.


An article from the Allentown Messenger the following week read:


The funeral services of Benjamin Franklin Rogers in the Baptist Church on Friday morning May 5 at 11 A.M. was one of the largest ever held in Allentown. Every seat in the entire church, including the gallery was taken.

The pall bearers were O.E. Southwick, C.M. Hulick, Joseph C. Johnson, J.Edgar Wilson, Frank Harris, and Edward Dilatush, all of whom were members of the American Mechanics, who attended in a body.

Mrs. Harry M. Anderson sang a solo, “Sometime We’ll Understand” and the members of the choir sang “The Unclouded Day” and “Shall we gather at the River”.

Rev. H.B. White of the Methodist Church read the scripture, after which Rev. James A. Matheson of the Presbyterian Church offered a prayer.

Pastor Charles K. Newell made a short address from the text found in Proverbs 22-1 “A good name is rather to be chosen than great riches and loving favor rather than silver and gold.”

Rev. James Swain of Woodland Presbyterian Church in Philadelphia, who was a schoolmate of Mr. Rogers, both at Allentown School and at Peddie Institute, was also present and assisted in the services, speaking from the words found in Psalms 90:12 “So teach us to number our days”.

Many handsome floral pieces were contributed. The businessmen of Allentown gave ‘the Vacant Chair”, Baptist Church “Broken Circle”, and Modern Priscilla “Gates Ajar”. One of the floral pieces most appropriate was a very large wreath of purple violets gathered by the school children of Allentown.

            The stores and schools closed during the services.


Since Benjamin Franklin Rogers had no sons, the Rogers surname in this branch of the Rogers family died with him. However, it has been carried on as a middle name for several generations following, including: John Rogers Woolston (1933-) his grandson, Pauline Rogers Friedrich Eaton (1935-) his granddaughter, Jonathan Rogers Woolston (1964-2002) his great grandson, Martin Rogers Maltenfort (1994-) his great great grandson, and Nicholas Rogers Woolston (2005-) also a great great grandson.








Descendants of Benjamin Rogers


Generation No. 1


1.  BENJAMIN6 ROGERS  (SAMUEL5, JOSEPH4, BENJAMIN3, WILLIAM2, JOHN1) was born 08 Sep 1797 in Bramley, Leeds, Yorkshire, England, and died 07 May 1851 in Forksville, PA.  He married GITTYANN BOWNE 1820.  She was born 01 Jan 1804, and died 03 Aug 1860.



                   i.    DANIEL7 ROGERS, b. 05 Aug 1821; d. 07 May 1823.

                  ii.    PHOEBE ROGERS, b. 05 Sep 1823; d. 1853.

                 iii.    INFANT GIRL ROGERS, b. 07 Sep 1825; d. Sep 1825.

                  iv.    RACHEL A. ROGERS, b. 31 Mar 1827; d. 1853.

                   v.    CATHERINE BOWNE ROGERS, b. 25 Jul 1830; d. 1853.

2.              vi.    BENJAMIN ROGERS II, b. 18 Nov 1832, Forksville, PA; d. 17 Jul 1897, Allentown, NJ.

3.             vii.    ELIAS BOWNE ROGERS, b. 20 Feb 1835; d. 23 Mar 1920.

                viii.    ELIZABETH C. ROGERS, b. 10 Mar 1836; d. 12 May 1836.

4.              ix.    CALEB C. ROGERS, b. 13 May 1838; d. 15 Aug 1911, buried in Greenwood Cemetery, Trenton, NJ.

                   x.    JAMES C. ROGERS, b. 18 Aug 1840; d. 01 Jan 1841.

                  xi.    GITTYANN BOWNE ROGERS, b. 23 Jun 1843; d. 08 Sep 1862, Hamilton Square Baptist Ch. Cemetery.

                 xii.    HANNAH M. ROGERS, b. 08 Dec 1845; d. Mar 1887.

                xiii.    HENRY CLAY ROGERS, b. 24 Apr 1849; d. 23 Aug 1850.


Generation No. 2


2.  BENJAMIN7 ROGERS II (BENJAMIN6, SAMUEL5, JOSEPH4, BENJAMIN3, WILLIAM2, JOHN1) was born 18 Nov 1832 in Forksville, PA, and died 17 Jul 1897 in Allentown, NJ.  He married LAVENIA CUBBERLEY 01 Jan 1865 in Hamilton Square, NJ  Baptist Church, daughter of GEORGE CUBBERLEY and SARAH HUTCHINSON.  She was born 29 Nov 1842 in Hamilton Square, NJ, and died 09 Jan 1905 in Allentown, NJ.



5.                i.    HENRY (HARRY) MORTIMER8 ROGERS, b. 1866, Allentown, NJ; d. 26 Sep 1923, buried in Englewood, NJ.

6.               ii.    BENJAMIN FRANKLIN ROGERS, b. 12 Jul 1870, Allentown, NJ; d. 02 May 1916, Allentown, NJ.


3.  ELIAS BOWNE7 ROGERS (BENJAMIN6, SAMUEL5, JOSEPH4, BENJAMIN3, WILLIAM2, JOHN1) was born 20 Feb 1835, and died 23 Mar 1920.  He married (1) ELLA LEE.  She was born 1841, and died 1862.  He married (2) MAGGIE MILLER.  She was born 1841, and died 1869.  He married (3) ELIZABETH CAROLINE FOWLER 1871.  She was born 13 Feb 1832, and died 1902.


Child of ELIAS ROGERS and ELLA LEE is:

                   i.    ELLA8 ROGERS, b. 1862; d. 1862.



                  ii.    ELMER8 ROGERS, d. 1868.

7.              iii.    WILLIAM ROGERS.




                  iv.    FRANK FOWLER8 ROGERS, b. 1876; d. 02 Jul 1923.


4.  CALEB C.7 ROGERS (BENJAMIN6, SAMUEL5, JOSEPH4, BENJAMIN3, WILLIAM2, JOHN1) was born 13 May 1838, and died 15 Aug 1911 in buried in Greenwood Cemetery, Trenton, NJ.  He married REBECCA ALLEN.  She was born 1837, and died 1925 in buried in Greenwood Cemetery, Trenton, NJ.



                   i.    HARVEY E.8 ROGERS, b. 1879; d. 1944, buried in Greenwood Cemetery, Trenton, NJ; m. MARY R. (WIFE OF HARVEY ROGERS); b. 1879; d. 1957, buried in Greenwood Cemetery, Trenton, NJ.

                  ii.    LAURA R. ROGERS, b. 1867; d. 1945, buried in Greenwood Cemetery, Trenton, NJ; m. L. E. ANDERSON.

8.              iii.    CALEB ALLEN ROGERS, b. 17 Dec 1871; d. 09 Dec 1922, buried in Greenwood Cemetery, Trenton, NJ.


Generation No. 3


5.  HENRY (HARRY) MORTIMER8 ROGERS (BENJAMIN7, BENJAMIN6, SAMUEL5, JOSEPH4, BENJAMIN3, WILLIAM2, JOHN1) was born 1866 in Allentown, NJ, and died 26 Sep 1923 in buried in Englewood, NJ.  He married CAROLINE W. HANKINS.  She was born 1866 in Allentown, NJ, and died 24 Apr 1932.



                   i.    STANLEY HANKINS9 ROGERS, b. 1899.


6.  BENJAMIN FRANKLIN8 ROGERS (BENJAMIN7, BENJAMIN6, SAMUEL5, JOSEPH4, BENJAMIN3, WILLIAM2, JOHN1) was born 12 Jul 1870 in Allentown, NJ, and died 02 May 1916 in Allentown, NJ1.  He married ELIZABETH ROBBINS TILTON2 24 Jun 1897 in Allentown, NJ3, daughter of CHARLES TILTON and CATHARINE ROBBINS.  She was born 05 Feb 1872 in Allentown, NJ, and died 28 Feb 1945 in Allentown, NJ.



9.                i.    EDNA LAVENIA9 ROGERS, b. 27 Sep 1901, Allentown, NJ; d. 10 Mar 1992, Medford Leas, NJ.

10.             ii.    FLORENCE ELIZABETH ROGERS, b. 23 Jan 1907, 5 High St., Allentown, NJ; d. 25 Sep 1969, Neptune, NJ.




Children of WILLIAM ROGERS and MYRA ROGERS) are:

                   i.    ELIAS9 ROGERS.

                  ii.    EDWARD ROGERS.

                 iii.    GLADYS ROGERS.


8.  CALEB ALLEN8 ROGERS (CALEB C.7, BENJAMIN6, SAMUEL5, JOSEPH4, BENJAMIN3, WILLIAM2, JOHN1) was born 17 Dec 1871, and died 09 Dec 1922 in buried in Greenwood Cemetery, Trenton, NJ.  He married CLARA LEE HENDRICKSON 30 Oct 1895.  She was born 30 Jun 1865, and died 08 Nov 1937 in buried in Greenwood Cemetery, Trenton, NJ.



                   i.    EDITH ADELLA9 ROGERS, b. 1898; d. 1962, buried in Greenwood Cemetery, Trenton, NJ.

11.             ii.    ARTHUR N. ROGERS, b. 06 Oct 1899; d. 18 May 1983.

                 iii.    VERNA MILDRED ROGERS, b. 29 Nov 1901; d. 29 Nov 1999, buried in Greenwood Cemetery, Trenton, NJ.

                  iv.    EVELYN REBECCA ROGERS, b. 29 Nov 1901; d. 18 Mar 1999, buried in Greenwood Cemetery, Trenton, NJ.


Generation No. 4


9.  EDNA LAVENIA9 ROGERS (BENJAMIN FRANKLIN8, BENJAMIN7, BENJAMIN6, SAMUEL5, JOSEPH4, BENJAMIN3, WILLIAM2, JOHN1)4 was born 27 Sep 1901 in Allentown, NJ, and died 10 Mar 1992 in Medford Leas, NJ.  She married JAPHET BISHOP WOOLSTON5 26 Mar 1932 in Allentown, NJ6, son of LOUIS WOOLSTON and LYDIA BAKER.  He was born 30 Nov 1887 in Trenton, NJ, and died 14 Jul 1961 in Princeton, NJ.



12.              i.    JOHN ROGERS10 WOOLSTON, b. 30 Mar 1933, Mercer Hosp., Trenton, NJ 4:27pm.

13.             ii.    CATHERINE LYDIA WOOLSTON, b. 25 Oct 1935, Mercer Hosp., Trenton, NJ 7:05am 8lb, 5oz.


10.  FLORENCE ELIZABETH9 ROGERS (BENJAMIN FRANKLIN8, BENJAMIN7, BENJAMIN6, SAMUEL5, JOSEPH4, BENJAMIN3, WILLIAM2, JOHN1)7 was born 23 Jan 1907 in 5 High St., Allentown, NJ, and died 25 Sep 1969 in Neptune, NJ.  She married PAUL ADOLPH FRIEDRICH8 30 Nov 1933 in 5 High St., Allentown, NJ9, son of ADOLPH FRIEDRICH and EMMA SCHULTZ.  He was born 02 Nov 1908 in Trenton, NJ, and died 13 Jan 2003 in Fallon, NV.



Paul Adolph Friedrich

FALLON, NV - Paul Adolph Friedrich, 94, died Monday at his home in Fallen, NV.

Paul was born in Trenton to Adolph Augustus Friedrich and Emma Schultz Friedrich. He  lived with his son John in Fallen since 2001, coming from Hackettstown, NJ. He was a retired Methodist minister.  He graduated from Hightstown High School, Dickinson College in Carlisle, PA, Garrett Seminary in Evanston, IL and attended Cambridge University in Cambridge, England.

He is preceded in death by his first wife, Florence Rogers Friedrich and his second wife Deborah Deacon Friedrich.  He is survived by his daughter Pauline Eaton of Corrales, NM; his sons Roger Paul of San Francisco and John Tilton of Fallen; his brothers Carl Richard Friedrich of Burlington, NJ and Russel Jacob Friedrich of Cream Ridge, NJ; six grandchildren and nine great grandchildren.

A memorial service will be held at a later date at the home of his daughter in Corrales, NM.

(from Trenton Times 16 Jan 2003)



14.              i.    PAULINE ROGERS10 FRIEDRICH, b. 20 Mar 1935, Fitkin Hosp., Neptune, NJ 12:45am 8lb, 7oz.

                  ii.    ROGER PAUL FRIEDRICH10, b. 19 Dec 1937, Long Branch Hosp., NJ 1:30pm.

15.            iii.    JOHN TILTON FRIEDRICH, b. 23 Mar 1943, Middlesex General Hosp., New Brunswick, NJ 12:11pm 9lb, 2oz.


11.  ARTHUR N.9 ROGERS (CALEB ALLEN8, CALEB C.7, BENJAMIN6, SAMUEL5, JOSEPH4, BENJAMIN3, WILLIAM2, JOHN1) was born 06 Oct 1899, and died 18 May 1983.  He married CATHERINE SMITH JOHNSTON 04 Sep 1929.  She was born 20 Aug 1903.



16.              i.    VIRGINIA JOHNSTON10 ROGERS, b. 27 Oct 1931.



Generation No. 5


12.  JOHN ROGERS10 WOOLSTON (EDNA LAVENIA9 ROGERS, BENJAMIN FRANKLIN8, BENJAMIN7, BENJAMIN6, SAMUEL5, JOSEPH4, BENJAMIN3, WILLIAM2, JOHN1)11 was born 30 Mar 1933 in Mercer Hosp., Trenton, NJ 4:27pm.  He married LORRAINE ETHEL POTENT 19 Oct 1957 in Grace Baptist Church, Trenton, NJ, daughter of ELMER POTENT and WILHELMINA PEAK.  She was born 03 Jan 1937 in Trenton, NJ.



17.              i.    JAPHET POTENT11 WOOLSTON, b. 21 Sep 1958, Mercer Hosp., Trenton, NJ.

18.             ii.    CYNTHIA LORRAINE WOOLSTON, b. 05 Jun 1961, Princeton Hosp., Princeton, NJ.

19.            iii.    JONATHAN ROGERS WOOLSTON, b. 11 Mar 1964, Princeton Hosp., Princeton, NJ; d. 14 Oct 2002, St. Francis West Hospital, Ewa, HI.

20.            iv.    GAIL JEANNETTE WOOLSTON, b. 11 Oct 1966, Princeton Hosp., Princeton, NJ.


13.  CATHERINE LYDIA10 WOOLSTON (EDNA LAVENIA9 ROGERS, BENJAMIN FRANKLIN8, BENJAMIN7, BENJAMIN6, SAMUEL5, JOSEPH4, BENJAMIN3, WILLIAM2, JOHN1)12 was born 25 Oct 1935 in Mercer Hosp., Trenton, NJ 7:05am 8lb, 5oz.  She married HERBERT LEONARD VAN BENTHUYSEN, JR. 12 Nov 1960 in Grace Baptist Church, Trenton, NJ, son of HERBERT VAN BENTHUYSEN and ELIZABETH BRISTOW.  He was born 05 Oct 1934 in Yonkers, NY.



21.              i.    ELIZABETH LYNN (BETSY)11 VAN BENTHUYSEN, b. 12 Feb 1962, Mercer Hosp., Trenton, NJ.

22.             ii.    JUDITH ANN VAN BENTHUYSEN, b. 05 Jul 1964, Union Hosp., Terre Haute, IN.


14.  PAULINE ROGERS10 FRIEDRICH (FLORENCE ELIZABETH9 ROGERS, BENJAMIN FRANKLIN8, BENJAMIN7, BENJAMIN6, SAMUEL5, JOSEPH4, BENJAMIN3, WILLIAM2, JOHN1)13 was born 20 Mar 1935 in Fitkin Hosp., Neptune, NJ 12:45am 8lb, 7oz.  She married CHARLES A. EATON.  He was born 27 May 1933.



23.              i.    GREGORY11 EATON, b. 04 Apr 1959.

24.             ii.    ERIC EATON, b. 02 Apr 1961.

                 iii.    JANE ELIZABETH EATON, b. 01 Feb 1963; d. 16 Feb 1964.

                  iv.    PAUL EATON, b. 26 Feb 1965.

                   v.    JOY EATON, b. 10 Jun 1968; m. DAN BARNABY.


15.  JOHN TILTON10 FRIEDRICH (FLORENCE ELIZABETH9 ROGERS, BENJAMIN FRANKLIN8, BENJAMIN7, BENJAMIN6, SAMUEL5, JOSEPH4, BENJAMIN3, WILLIAM2, JOHN1)14 was born 23 Mar 1943 in Middlesex General Hosp., New Brunswick, NJ 12:11pm 9lb, 2oz.  He married PAULINE JOAN HALL 01 Jun 1968 in Kibi, Ghana, West Africa, daughter of CYRIL HALL and PHYLLIS STEVENS.  She was born 14 Oct 1943 in Bristol (Frenchay), England.



25.              i.    RAITH KAREN11 FRIEDRICH, b. 19 Oct 1969, Makassar, Indonesia.

                  ii.    SINTA FLORENCE FRIEDRICH, b. 05 Mar 1971, Makassar, Indonesia.





26.              i.    JAMES ROGERS11 CHRISTOPHER, b. 05 Oct 1964.

                  ii.    DONALD BELLOWS CHRISTOPHER, b. 27 Aug 1962.


Generation No. 6

17.  JAPHET POTENT11 WOOLSTON (JOHN ROGERS10, EDNA LAVENIA9 ROGERS, BENJAMIN FRANKLIN8, BENJAMIN7, BENJAMIN6, SAMUEL5, JOSEPH4, BENJAMIN3, WILLIAM2, JOHN1) was born 21 Sep 1958 in Mercer Hosp., Trenton, NJ.  He married (1) DANA HOLLIS 13 Jul 1985 in Honolulu, HI   divorced: Nov. 1988.    He married (2) ZOE TINA COKAYNE 30 Aug 1997 in St. Christopher's Anglican Ch., Manama, Bahrain, daughter of FRANCIS COKAYNE and PATRICIA GREEN.  She was born 16 Sep 1968 in Surrey, England.



                   i.    EMMA FRANCES12 WOOLSTON, b. 15 Jun 2003, Honolulu, HI.

                  ii.    NICHOLAS ROGERS WOOLSTON, b. 10 Jan 2004, Tripler Hospital, Honolulu, Hawai'i.



born 10:04 pm, 6lb 10oz, fraternal twin to Julia Marie Woolston


                 iii.    JULIA MARIE WOOLSTON, b. 10 Jan 2004, Tripler Hospital, Honolulu, Hawai'i.



born 10:17 pm, 6lb 4 oz, fraternal twin to Nicholas Rogers Woolston


18.  CYNTHIA LORRAINE11 WOOLSTON (JOHN ROGERS10, EDNA LAVENIA9 ROGERS, BENJAMIN FRANKLIN8, BENJAMIN7, BENJAMIN6, SAMUEL5, JOSEPH4, BENJAMIN3, WILLIAM2, JOHN1) was born 05 Jun 1961 in Princeton Hosp., Princeton, NJ.  She married ANDREW JOHN MALTENFORT 18 Aug 1985 in "Morven" garden, Princeton, NJ, son of MARTIN MALTENFORT and CAROL RANSHAW.  He was born 26 Feb 1959 in Delaware.



                   i.    ALEXANDRA ELIZABETH "SASHA"12 MALTENFORT, b. 26 Mar 1992, Waltham, MA.

                  ii.    MARTIN ROGERS MALTENFORT, b. 01 May 1994, Morristown, NJ.


19.  JONATHAN ROGERS11 WOOLSTON (JOHN ROGERS10, EDNA LAVENIA9 ROGERS, BENJAMIN FRANKLIN8, BENJAMIN7, BENJAMIN6, SAMUEL5, JOSEPH4, BENJAMIN3, WILLIAM2, JOHN1) was born 11 Mar 1964 in Princeton Hosp., Princeton, NJ, and died 14 Oct 2002 in St. Francis West Hospital, Ewa, HI.  He married AMY VIRGINIA SPECKMAN 18 Jun 1994 in Kahana Kai Estate, Punaluu, Oahu, HI, daughter of GEORGE SPECKMAN and NANCY RIDER.  She was born 21 Feb 1964 in Stanford Hospital, Palo Alto, CA.



EWA BEACH, HI   Jonathan Rogers Woolston, 38, died on October 14th at St. Frances Medical Center in Ewa, Hawai'i following a lengthy illness.

His wife, Amy Speckman Woolston, his son, Timothy J.R. Woolston, and his stepdaughter, Kailtin Kahn, survive him.  He is also survived by his parents, J. Rogers and Lorraine Potent Woolston of Princeton, NJ; a brother, Japhet P. Woolston and sister-in law, Zoe C. Woolston of Hawai'i; a sister, Cynthia Maltenfort and brother-in-law Andrew; another sister, Gail Wilkinson and brother-in-law Bruce, all of Virginia; a sister-in-law Beth Speckman of California as well as several nieces, a nephew, aunts, uncles and cousins

Jonathan was a 1982 graduate of Princeton High School and a 1986 graduate of the University of Rochester with a degree in statistics.  He was very active in track and served as captain of the track teams at both schools.  He was an Eagle Scout from Troop 88 in Princeton.  He was an athlete who enjoyed scuba diving, motorcycling and water skiing and was a member of the Hickam Water Skiers Club.

Following graduation from Rochester as an NROTC student he was commissioned in the United States Navy. He joined the Submarine Service in Hawai'i where he served aboard the USS Birmingham, leaving the Navy in 1994 as a Lieutenant.  He was a senior analyst with Summit Research Corporation, working on contract to the US Navy at the Pearl Harbor Submarine Base.

A private service was held in Honolulu.  In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to The Ronald McDonald House, 405 East 73rd Street, New York, NY 10021



                   i.    TIMOTHY JOHN RIDER12 WOOLSTON, b. 30 Sep 1996, Honolulu, HI.


20.  GAIL JEANNETTE11 WOOLSTON (JOHN ROGERS10, EDNA LAVENIA9 ROGERS, BENJAMIN FRANKLIN8, BENJAMIN7, BENJAMIN6, SAMUEL5, JOSEPH4, BENJAMIN3, WILLIAM2, JOHN1) was born 11 Oct 1966 in Princeton Hosp., Princeton, NJ.  She married BRUCE ODQUIST WILKINSON 28 Jul 1989 in Oceanside, CA, son of ROBERT WILKINSON and CONSTANCE ODQUIST.  He was born 11 Apr 1966.



                   i.    NATALIE ROSE12 WILKINSON, b. 03 Nov 1993, TwentyNine Palms, CA.

                  ii.    ALYSON ROSE WILKINSON, b. 01 Apr 1998, Monterey, CA.


21.  ELIZABETH LYNN (BETSY)11 VAN BENTHUYSEN (CATHERINE LYDIA10 WOOLSTON, EDNA LAVENIA9 ROGERS, BENJAMIN FRANKLIN8, BENJAMIN7, BENJAMIN6, SAMUEL5, JOSEPH4, BENJAMIN3, WILLIAM2, JOHN1) was born 12 Feb 1962 in Mercer Hosp., Trenton, NJ.  She married HUGH H. COOK III 23 Aug 1986 in Congr. Church of Brookfield, CT.  He was born 06 Jun 1954.



                   i.    KRISTEN ELIZABETH12 COOK, b. 18 Dec 1987, Washington, DC.

                  ii.    STACY LYNN COOK, b. 10 Jun 1994.





                   i.    KELLY ANN12 MCCALLION, b. 25 Aug 1989, Danbury, CT; d. 24 Nov 2002, Brookfield, CT.




Kelly Ann McCallion

Kelly Ann McCallion, 13, of Brookfield, died unexpectedly on November 24, 2002 at Danbury Hospital.  Kelly was born on August 25, 1989, in Danbury, daughter of James and Judy (VanBenthuysen) McCallion.  She was raised in Ridgefield, and moved to Brookfield in 2000.  She was a student at Whisconier Middle School and played the flute in the school band.  She attended the Congregational Church of Brookfield.

Kelly was a beautiful, sweet, smart and talented person. She loved to paint and draw. She enjoyed swimming, traveling, playing the flute, holidays, movies, pizza, playing with her eight-year old brother and many friendships. She touched many people with her sweetness and friendship.  She will be missed by all who knew her and loved her.

Besides her devoted parents, Kelly is survived by her loving brother, Brian J. McCallion; maternal grandparents, Herb and Cathy VanBenthuysen of Loveland Ohio, formerly of Brookfield; and paternal grandparents, Dr. Alexander and Josephine McCallion of Ridgefield. She is also survived by Aunt Susan McCallion and Uncle John Zanni, Aunt Betsy and Uncle Hugh Cook, as well as cousins Kristen and Stacy Cook.

Friends may call on Friday, November 29th at the Brookfield Funeral Home, 786 Federal Road, between the hours of 4 and 6 p.m. Funeral Services will be held at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, November 30th at the Congregational Church of Brookfield with Reverend Peter Wiley and Reverend Susan Latourette presiding. Cremation will take place at the convenience of the family.

Because of her love for dogs, contributions can be made in the memory of Kelly Ann McCallion to the Danbury Animal Welfare Society, PO Box 971, Danbury, CT  06813


                  ii.    BRIAN JAMES MCCALLION, b. 02 May 1994.




Children of GREGORY EATON and JANET EATON) are:

                   i.    DEBORAH JANE12 EATON, b. 28 Aug 1979.

                  ii.    SARAH ELIZABETH EATON, b. 04 May 1981.





                   i.    BRENT LINDSEY12 EATON, b. 14 Apr 1998.


25.  RAITH KAREN11 FRIEDRICH (JOHN TILTON10, FLORENCE ELIZABETH9 ROGERS, BENJAMIN FRANKLIN8, BENJAMIN7, BENJAMIN6, SAMUEL5, JOSEPH4, BENJAMIN3, WILLIAM2, JOHN1) was born 19 Oct 1969 in Makassar, Indonesia.  She married ANDREW EDMONDSON.  He was born 25 Sep 1964 in New Mexico.



                   i.    MIKAYLA SHAE12 EDMONDSON, b. 25 Jun 1995, Albuquerque, NM.

                  ii.    TANIS EDMONDSON, b. 27 Jun 1997, Albuquerque, NM.






                   i.    CORBIN BARNETT12 CHRISTOPHER, b. 19 Apr 2003.

                  ii.    CATHERINE ROGERS CHRISTOPHER, b. 18 Nov 2004.



The source for the 14 numbered references in this descendants report are all from “The Holy Bible...,” Family Bible, (William W. Harding, Philadelphia 1869) 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th pages following the “Apocrypha.”


Appendix A: Samuel Rogers (4) Family Group Sheet


Appendix B:Descendants of Joseph Rogers


Generation No. 1


1.  JOSEPH5 ROGERS  (SAMUEL4, JOSEPH3, BENJAMIM2, WILLIAM1) was born 01 Aug 1784 in Bramley, England, and died 03 Apr 1847 in Lycoming County, PA.  He married HANNAH CARLYLE 17 Mar 1809, daughter of PATRICK CARLYLE (CARLISLE).  She was born 03 Apr 1792, and died 04 May 1860.



2.                i.    MARGARET ANN6 ROGERS, b. 13 Jan 1810, Forksville, PA; d. 20 Apr 1871, Cascade Twp, Lycoming County, PA.

3.               ii.    JOSEPH EDMUND ROGERS, b. 30 Aug 1812, New Jersey; d. 09 Nov 1885.

4.              iii.    LOUISA ROGERS, b. 19 Feb 1815; d. 27 Apr 1884.

                  iv.    EMALINE ROGERS, b. 26 Dec 1817; d. 09 Jul 1839; m. JAMES STEEL, 06 May 1838.

                   v.    SAMUEL ROGERS, b. 16 Jul 1820; m. SUSAN IMPSON, 07 Mar 1840.

5.              vi.    CHARLOTTE ROGERS, b. 15 Jan 1823.

                 vii.    MARY ELIZABETH ROGERS, b. 16 Nov 1825; m. TRUMAN PIPER, 10 Dec 1848.

                viii.    HANNAH ROGERS, b. 29 Feb 1828; m. ROBERT C. MCPHERSON, 14 Aug 1852.

                  ix.    AMANDA ROGERS, b. 13 Jun 1830; m. (1) JOHN BARRETT, 04 May 1850; m. (2) CHARLES R. PARIS, 1860.

                   x.    CATHERINE ROGERS, b. 13 Apr 1834; d. 1897, Los Angles, CA; m. (1) ALLEN SOPER, 23 Nov 1852; m. (2) H.W. BALL, 1895.


Generation No. 2

2.  MARGARET ANN6 ROGERS (JOSEPH5, SAMUEL4, JOSEPH3, BENJAMIM2, WILLIAM1) was born 13 Jan 1810 in Forksville, PA, and died 20 Apr 1871 in Cascade Twp, Lycoming County, PA.  She married JAMES CONDON 13 Jun 1826.  He was born 02 Jun 1801 in New Jersey, and died 28 Dec 1873 in Cascade Twp, Lycoming County, PA.



6.                i.    WILLIAM7 CONDON, b. 09 Nov 1826, Trenton, NJ.

7.               ii.    JOSEPH R CONDON, b. 13 Jan 1829; d. 20 Oct 1857.

8.              iii.    MARY CONDON, b. 09 Oct 1830; d. 28 Apr 1865.

                  iv.    AMANDA CONDON, b. 02 Feb 1833; d. 22 Oct 1871; m. WILLIAM BROWN, 17 Apr 1853; b. Jun 1827, PA.

9.               v.    HENRIETTA CONDON, b. 20 Apr 1835, PA; d. 22 Oct 1871.

10.            vi.    EMELINE CONDON, b. 12 Nov 1837, PA; d. 07 Mar 1905.

                 vii.    MATILDA CONDON, b. 30 Jan 1840; d. 25 May 1872.

11.          viii.    CORDELIA CONDON, b. 30 Jun 1842, Cascade Twp, Lycoming Co, PA (located along Route 15 N of Williamsport; d. 03 Oct 1886, Cascade Twp, PA.

                  ix.    MARGARET CONDON, b. 04 Jul 1844; d. 01 Jan 1904, Pennsdale, PA; m. WILLIAM GUINTER, 10 Feb 1871; b. Jan 1851.

12.             x.    JAMES CARLISLE CONDON, b. 10 Sep 1846; d. 12 Feb 1895.

13.            xi.    JOHN ROGERS CONDON, b. 28 Dec 1848, Pennsylvania.

14.           xii.    CHARLES TRUMAN CONDON, b. 25 Aug 1851, PA; d. Jan 1927, Rolfe, Elk County, PA.

                xiii.    EDGAR CONDON, b. 05 Jun 1854, PA; d. 27 Aug 1855, Cascade Twp, Lycoming Co, PA.



3.  JOSEPH EDMUND6 ROGERS (JOSEPH5, SAMUEL4, JOSEPH3, BENJAMIM2, WILLIAM1) was born 30 Aug 1812 in New Jersey, and died 09 Nov 1885.  He married DEBORAH MCCULLY 17 Apr 1834.  She was born about 1817 in PA.



                   i.    JOSEPH G7 ROGERS, b. About 1839, PA.

                  ii.    JULIET ROGERS, b. About 1846, PA.

                 iii.    MARGARET ROGERS, b. About 1848, PA.

                  iv.    EMMA P ROGERS, b. About 1851, PA.

                   v.    JOHN W ROGERS, b. About 1853, PA.



4.  LOUISA6 ROGERS (JOSEPH5, SAMUEL4, JOSEPH3, BENJAMIM2, WILLIAM1) was born 19 Feb 1815, and died 27 Apr 1884.  She married SAMUEL STAHL 15 Nov 1832. 



15.              i.    LOUISE7 STAHL.


5.  CHARLOTTE6 ROGERS (JOSEPH5, SAMUEL4, JOSEPH3, BENJAMIM2, WILLIAM1) was born 15 Jan 1823.  She married JOHN L. SCOTT 18 Nov 1841. 



16.              i.    JOHN7 SCOTT.


Generation No. 3


6.  WILLIAM7 CONDON (MARGARET ANN6 ROGERS, JOSEPH5, SAMUEL4, JOSEPH3, BENJAMIM2, WILLIAM1) was born 09 Nov 1826 in Trenton, NJ.  He married CATHERINE KENNEDY in White Deer, PA.  She was born Dec 1823 in PA.



                   i.    JOHN KENNEDY8 CONDON, b. Apr 1857, White Deer, PA; m. AMELIA ANN LOUDENSLAGER, Jan 1884, Lycoming County, PA; b. Feb 1864, PA.



7.  JOSEPH R7 CONDON (MARGARET ANN6 ROGERS, JOSEPH5, SAMUEL4, JOSEPH3, BENJAMIM2, WILLIAM1) was born 13 Jan 1829, and died 20 Oct 1857.  He married ELIZABETH DAUGHERTY 10 Aug 1850.  She was born About 1831 in PA.



                   i.    GEORGE W8 CONDON, b. About 1851.

                  ii.    MARGARET N CONDON, b. About 1853.

                 iii.    AGNES CONDON, b. About 1858.



8.  MARY7 CONDON (MARGARET ANN6 ROGERS, JOSEPH5, SAMUEL4, JOSEPH3, BENJAMIM2, WILLIAM1) was born 09 Oct 1830, and died 28 Apr 1865.  She married HENRY SWEET 31 Oct 1852.  He was born About 1833 in PA, and died Before 1870.


Children of MARY CONDON and HENRY SWEET are:

                   i.    GEORGE8 SWEET, b. About 1858, PA.

                  ii.    WILLIAM SWEET, b. About 1863, PA.



9.  HENRIETTA7 CONDON (MARGARET ANN6 ROGERS, JOSEPH5, SAMUEL4, JOSEPH3, BENJAMIM2, WILLIAM1) was born 20 Apr 1835 in PA, and died 22 Oct 1871.  She married GEORGE W MOYER 05 Jan 1860.  He was born About 1830 in PA.



                   i.    WILLARD8 MOYER, b. Oct 1854, PA.

                  ii.    MARGARET A MOYER, b. About 1863, PA.

                 iii.    AMANDA R MOYER, b. About 1866, PA.

                  iv.    CORA MOYER, b. About 1871, PA.



10.  EMELINE7 CONDON (MARGARET ANN6 ROGERS, JOSEPH5, SAMUEL4, JOSEPH3, BENJAMIM2, WILLIAM1) was born 12 Nov 1837 in PA, and died 07 Mar 1905.  She married ISAAC NELSON 03 Jul 1856.  He was born Sep 1832 in New York.



17.              i.    ANNIE D8 NELSON, b. Jan 1858, New York.