The following MCCUMBY Family information
regarding Samuel Thomas McCUMBY and family was sent to us by Kristy McCUMBY
HYLAND by e-mail in April 2010. She had written to us after finding the
cemetery that her great-grandfather Samuel was buried on our PGS Website:
Nasewaupee-Schumacher/Nasewaupee Town Cemetery where pictures of his
stone had been taken in 2009. She had been searching for his resting
place for quite a while.
This page consists of pictures of Samuel and
his second wife Mary "Mamie" MORTON McCUMBY and family, his biography from
an old conscripted biographies book (the name of which has not been found),
his OBITUARY from the Door County Democrat, a letter from Eva McCUMBY
PHILPOT to Sandra McCUMBY PEDIGO dated 27 May 1966, and parts of Kristy's
family recollections from her e-mails. Further pictures of Samuel T.
McCUMBY's Ship's Masters License and ship T. S. CHRISTIE that he sailed on
were sent to us via e-mail from Kristy on 12 Jun 2010
Our thanks to Kristy for sharing this
wonderful information on her family who resided in Sawyer in the
Town of Sturgeon Bay for a number of
We hope you will enjoy this webpage which
chronicles the life of a sailor on the Great Lakes and elsewhere and his
family. If you have any information to add or correct, please contact
us at: [email protected] .
E-mail from Kristy McCUMBY
HYLAND to PGS-5 Apr 2010:Thank
you very much for posting the information on the
Schumacher/Nasewaupee Cemetary on your website and the
outstanding photos of the headstones. I have been trying to
find the burial location for my great-grandfather, Samuel
Thomas McCumby for a long time. From an obituary and some
general family stories, he was supposed to have been buried
in Sawyer, WI...but since I could no longer find the
location of that town, my hopes of finding the exact
location of his gravesite were low. I was so happy to find
what you had posted on the website - it means a lot!
Samuel Thomas McCumby's wife, Mary
Morton McCumby left
and moved to Everett, Washington with their children shortly
after Samuel's death in 1906. Mary is buried in Snohomish,
WA, next to their young daughter, Mamie, who was killed in a
terrible accident in 1907. Later on, their daughter, Faith
McCumby was laid to rest next to her mother and younger
sister. I only discovered Ruth's existance a few years ago
through some searches of the Wisconsin Birth and Death
records. It is nice to know that she is next to her father
in the cemetary there. Samuel's sons; my grandfather and
great-uncles are all buried in the Snohomish County/Everett,
WA area, so it's been great to get this piece of the family
puzzle as to where the final resting places for all the
members of the family.
Kristy McCumby Hyland
2nd E-mail from
Kristy McCUMBY HYLAND to PGS on 5 Apr 2010: I'd be
happy to have you add my information to the Surname index on
your site. I've attached a transcribed copy that I made
from the original newspaper clipping with Samuel T.
McCumby's obituary. I attached some family "history" from a
letter from Samuel's eldest daughter, Eva McCumby Philpot
that you may be interested in. I also included a
transcribed biography that appeared in some books that the
family had back in the 1950's, when my mother transcribed
it...but...oops! no one wrote down the title/date of the
book. I think it was from one of the "vanity" type books
written in the early 1900's about the local
prominent residents in various areas of the country (a
company would come in and include your biography in the book
for your area and then sell copies to everyone in town).
Anyway, Samuel T. McCumby was a
pretty interesting relative to have - he lived in very
difficult and interesting times, surviving the Civil War in
as a child, going to sea at the age of 14. He was romantic,
marrying his first wife, Nette Squire, on
Day. Yet, he faced a lot of tragedy, too, having her
cholera and leaving him with two small children to
raise after only 7 years of marriage. He married my
great-grandmother, Mary Morton McCumby about two years after
Nettie died, and she helped raise his two children, as well
as the four she had with Samuel. No one in the family ever
spoke about Ruth, the infant buried beside Samuel. I suspect
it was very sad for the family, and my grandfather was only
about three years old when she would have been born.
Mary (Mamie) Morton McCumby moved
to Everett, WA after several of her brothers and Ward
McCumby moved there in the early 1900's as there were lots
of jobs in the lumber mills/camps available there at that
time. Mary, her step-daughter Eva, son Alfred, daughter,
Faith, son Sigsbee (actually
Sigsbee, my grandfather), and daughter Mamie (Mary) all left
in the fall of 1906, and never returned there after Samuel
Thomas McCumby's death. Interestingly, in the 1910 census
for Everett, WA, they still list Samuel Thomas McCumby on
the form...though it was 4 years after the time we know he
died...I guess he was still the "head of household" in their
Now that I know where to go look
for Samuel's grave, it's on my list of places to visit on my
genealogy tour that I'm planning after I retire in the next
year or so. So, when I visit the
Green Bay area, I'll
certainly try to drop by the Genealogical Society for a
Thanks again for all your hard work
in cataloging and photographing the site, and for making it
available to those of us who live a ways away from our
Kristy's 3rd E-mail
regarding the McCUMBY Family is at the bottom of this webpage following the
pictures, biography and letter.
CLICK ON THE IMAGES TO SEE THEM ENLARGED!
Captain Samuel T. McCumby-Biography*
Capt. Samuel T. McCumby was
born in Wilmington, North Carolina, August 1, 1856 and is a descendant of a
family of soldiers and sailors of the fifth generation. He is a son of Jacob
and Susan (Hewitt) McCumby, both natives of the same city, their ancestors
having resided there during the old Colonial days. The great-grandfather,
Reuben Hewitt, was a patriot of the Revolution, and near the close of the
war was shot to death by a Tory. The grandfather, Jacob McCumby, fought
through the Mexican war, and the Captain’s father and five brothers espoused
the Confederate side of the Civil war, three of them being in Gen. R.E.
Lee’s army. His father enlisted in the 20th
North Carolina Regiment and participated in many of the great battles of
that noted general. In 1865 his regiment was transferred to General
Johnston’s army and Mr. McCumby was killed in action at Salisbury, N.C. Two
of the brothers were pilots in charge of blockade runners -- Henry being on
the Bermuda, with which he made many daring and successful runs, but was
finally compelled to beach and burn her; while Lemuel was pilot of the noted
blockade runner Tallahassee, which carried the Confederate flag through many
Capt. S.T. McCumby left school when he was
fourteen years of age and went to sea, shipping in the British bark Mystic
Tie, of London, and remained with her three years, making voyages to London,
Liverpool, Brazil, Martinique, U.I., Australia, and returned to New York. He
then joined the packet ship Richmond in the coasting trade until Sept. 1874,
when he enlisted in the United States navy as an ordinary seaman, serving
three years and seven months. He was first sent to the receiving ship
Vermont, and after some training was assigned to the second-class frigate
Richmond, which cruised on the north and south Pacific ocean. He was
honorably discharged at Boston, in March, 1878, having been promoted during
his term of serving to coxswain of the steam launch and second Captain of
the foretop. Later in the spring of 1878 Captain McCumby came to the lakes,
stopping first at Buffalo, then going to Toronto, where he shipped before
the mast, in the Canadian schooner Jesse Scarf, transferring to the American
schooner Knight Templar and Moonlight in the same season. Other vessels that
he sailed on were the Belle Brown, Marengo, David Vance, Belle Hanscomb,
Home, Ketcham, and as wheelsman in the Gurmmond line steamer Atlantic. He
was mate of the schooners L.M. Mason and Merchant, the latter trading on
Green Bay. For three seasons he was also mate of the wrecking tug Manarch,
of Escanaba, and was concerned in the many rescues during that period, among
them the crews of the schooners Marion Paige, and Clark I. Butts. It is
proper to state here that while the Captain was in the navy, he was sent in
charge of a small boat to the rescue of the crew of the British ship wrecked
and going to pieces at Montevideo, for which he and his crew received a
letter of thanks from the Hon. Richard Thompson, secretary of the navy, the
letter being read on the quarter deck of the ship.
In the spring of 1891, Captain McCumby was appointed mate of the schooner
Nellie, plying in the passenger trade between Escanaba and Chicago,
finishing the season as mate of the schooner Belle Hanscomb. In 1892 he
entered in the employ of the Hart Steamboat Company at Green Bay as mate of
the Steamer C.W. Moore, transferring to the Fanny C. Hart the next season,
and going with her to the World’s Fair at Chicago, closing that year as
master of the O.B. Reed, taking her from Oshkosh to Toledo. The next two
seasons he passed as mate of the Philetus Sawyer, and in the spring of 1896
was appointed master of the wrecking tug Albert J. Wright, of Sturgeon Bay.
The following year he was pilot of the tugs Jesse Spaulding and M. A. Knapp
on Lake Superior, and mate of the Philetus Sawyer, holding the last berth
until Sept. 1898, when he was appointed master of the steamer New Baltimore,
plying in the passenger trade between Escanaba, Fayette, Nahma and Garden
Bay, and office he holds at this writing.
Socially he is a member of the beneficial order of the Royal Arcanum.
Captain McCumby was married to Miss Nettie
Squire, of Ludington, Mich., in 1880, a daughter Eva, and a son Ward being
born to them. In Jan. 1890, the Captain contracted a second marriage, the
bride being Miss Mamie, daughter of Alfred and Polly Morton, of Escanaba,
where she had taught school for many years. Their children are: Alfred,
Faith, and Sigsbee, the youngest son being born shortly after the Maine was
blown up by the Spaniards, and was named in honor of the commander of that
war vessel. They reside at Sawyer, Wisconsin.
* Note from Kristy McCumby Hyland - This
biography of Samuel Thomas McCumby was first transcribed by my mother in the
1950’s. I’ve copied it dutifully here, even with its unusual punctuation and
phrasing style. Unfortunately, at the time it was transcribed, no one
thought to write down the name of the book and its publisher. It seems that
this came from some local history/biography book that contained biographies
of people that lived around that areas of Green Bay/Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin.
It would be considered a “vanity-press” type of publication today - people
paid the publisher a small fee to write the story/biography or buy the book
with their biography printed in it. It appears that this biography was
written after 1898 when my grandfather, Charles Sigsbee McCumby, was born
and before 1900 when the youngest daughter Mamie was born.
BELOW: Family of Samuel Thomas McCumby,
Circa 1907-08 after moving to Everett, Washington: Eva, Faith, Alfred, Sigsbee, Ward, and Mary Morton
BELOW: LEFT: [possibly Friends Church,
Sturgeon Bay (Sawyer)]: Sunday school class of Mary (Mamie) McCUMBY (Born
Feb. 14, 1902, Died July 1907 when her dress caught fire from fire crackers
at a 4th of July celebration in Everett, Washington - First row, second girl from the left - RIGHT: Mary (Mamie) Mc CUMBY
taken from Sunday School picture.
OBITUARY of Samuel T. McCUMBY from the Door County Democrat- 14 Jul 1906
Death of Capt. McCumby: A Well
Known Lake Captain Passes Away
Operation Performed at Green
Bay, But No Relief Could Be Secured.
T. McCumby who has resided in this part of the city for some time past and
who was obliged to give up his position as mate on the steamer Christie, and
return to his home two weeks ago last Wednesday, and who was subsequently
taken to Green Bay, Died in the hospital at 2 o’clock last Sunday afternoon
after having been operated on the day previous. The direct cause of his
death was found to be cancer of the liver with which he has been ailing for
several months, but has kept on had his work until obliged to quit by his
About Ten years
ago, Capt. McCumby met with an accident while working on the tug A.J.
Wright, which resulted in the fracture of his right arm, since which time he
has never had the use of it as it never properly healed, not withstanding
this fact he has been an officer on many of the best steamers plying on the
bay and lakes and has always been spoken of as a faithful and efficient
navigator, and the many responsible positions he has held in years past
bears evidence of this fact.
was born of a family of soldiers and sailors and when but 14 years of age,
he went to sea, shipping out on a British bark, in which he made three
voyages, touching at London, Liverpool, Brazil, Martinique, and Australia.
He then went to New York and sailed out on a packet ship until Sept. 1874,
when he enlisted in the United States navy as an ordinary seaman, serving
three years before being honorably discharged at Boston in March 1878,
having been promoted to the position of cockswain and second captain.
In the spring of 1878 he came to the lakes where he shipped before the mast and by
faithful service and good seamanship was soon sailing as mate, and he was
employed by many of the best vessels on the lakes. Capt. McCumby was mate on
the wrecking tug Monarch for three seasons and during that time was
connected with many rescue operations, among them being the crews of the
Marion Paige and Clark I. Butts.
Since 1892 he
has been mate and master on several of the large steamers plying on Green
Bay and on Lakes Michigan and Superior, and for the past six years has been
mate on the steamer S.T. Christie. Samuel T. McCumby was married to Miss
Nettie Squire of Ludington, Mich. In 1880, a daughter, Miss Eva and a son
Ward being born to them. In Jan. 1890, Capt. McCumby was again married, the
bride being Mamie Morton of Escanaba, Mich. Their children are Alfred,
Faith, Sigsbee, and Mamie. Capt. McCumby was a kind and loving husband and
despite his crippled arm, that would have discouraged many other men, kept
on at his chosen occupation and was able to provide well for his family.
The funeral was
held on Tuesday at the Friends church, Rev. Stanfield officiating, and many
friends attended the services, thus showing the high esteem in which he was
held by all who knew him as ell as to show their sympathy for the family
bereft of a loving husband and kind father.
BELOW: Samuel T. McCUMBY's
2nd Masters License-dated 1902; sent to us by Kristy McCUMBY HYLAND on 12
Below: Samuel T. McCUMBY
aboard his ship: T. S. CHRISTIE-date: (maybe between 1902 and 1906)
Letter from Eva
McCUMBY PHILPOT to Sandra McCUMBY PEDIGO-27 May 1966
Transcription of a
hand-written letter from Eva McCumby Philpot to Sandra McCumby Pedigo. May
I remember how
interesting the accounts of those early days were to me as Grandma Morton
told them. She married very young in Buffalo, NY. They moved to Northern
Michigan during the Civil War. Grandfather always had teams and contracted
work, the railroads were building in that area. She had her five boys to
care for, the three girls and tow other boys were born in Michigan. The two
boys born in Michigan died when they were small. She told me how frightened
she was of the Indians at first. She was my stepmother’s mother, but she was
a real grandmother to brother and me.
Grandma Morton is buried
in Centralia, Washington, where she lived with her daughter, Dolly Lockwood.
The eldest daughter was Mrs. Nellie Johnson.
Mamie (Mary) Morton,
second daughter of Alfred and Polly Morton grew up in the family home at
Escanaba, Mich. graduated from high school there, and then taught school at
Fayette, Mich. and other schools in Delta County. She met and married Samuel
Thomas McCumby. They moved to Sturgeon Bay where they lived until Capt.
McCumby’s death in 1906, July8th.
Captain Samuel Thomas
(Mac) McCumby was born in Wilmington , North Carolina, August 1, 1856. His
folks were part of the Scotch(ish) settlement around the Cape Fear River.
His mother was Susan Hewitt, also Scotish. Her brothers were pilots and ran
the blockade during the war. His mother died during the war and his father,
Jacob McCumby fell in battle at Salsbury, N.C. and was buried on the
battlefield. He and his younger brothers, Robert and William lived with the
grandparents until Samuel went to sea as a Cabin Boy, the younger two boys
were adopted into good homes. William Cason and Robert Leitchfield (names
may be spelled incorrectly, according to Eva).
Our great grandfather,
Jacob McCumby served in the Mexican War. Our family held slaves.
After many voyages,
Samuel enlisted in the Navy and finally came up to the Great Lakes, stayed
on and became Master and Pilot for the chain of Great Lakes. He died in the
hospital at Green Bay, Wisc. and is buried at West Sturgeon Bay (was
formerly Sawyer, Wisc.) We, our family moved to Everett (Washington)
in the fall of 1906.
I fear that I am not much
help in your interesting task, but will be glad to help in any way I can.
3rd E-mail from Kristy
McCUMBY HYLAND to PGS-6 Apr 2010: That would be
wonderful if you do get a chance to put together a web
page for him on your site. Yes, I do have one photo
of Samuel Thomas (at least I'm pretty sure it is him).
I found a copy of it in the "Morton" family photos at my
parents' house and I wasn't sure if it was one of the
Morton cousins or who? (There are a number of photos
from that branch of the family that were not identified
in any way, and the people who might have known them are
now long-gone.) However, when I was visiting my 96
year-old "cousin", Janet Abel, (Samuel Thomas' eldest
daughter Eva's, daughter). She had an identical photo to
the one at my parent's house and she indicated that it
was a photo of Samuel Thomas McCumby. I was a little
confused, as the photographer listed on the photo
sleeve was located in Everett, WA, but Janet thought
that the family had brought his picture with them when
they left Wisconsin, and had copies made of it for the
family members when they were in Everett. Janet passed
away about three years ago, but I was very privileged to
have talked with her a fair amount about family
history after I moved here in 1999, as she was living
just south of Salinas, about a two-hour drive from my
home here in San Jose. Since her mother was the eldest
child in the family and my grandfather was the youngest
son, she learned a lot more of the family history than
my grandfather did.
I have a wonderful photo of
Mary Morton McCumby and her children, taken shortly
after they arrived in Everett. I also have several of
the boys and Eva (who was really beautiful) I also have
one of little Mamie McCumby's Sunday School class that
is just adorable..
I mentioned that Mamie McCumby
died in an accident shortly after the family moved to
Everett, barely a year after her father, Samuel Thomas
passed away. She was burned to death when her dress
caught on fire after a fire-cracker was thrown in her
direction at a 4th of July celebration in 1907. It was
a tragedy that the family never forgot.
Samuel Thomas spent a lot of
time going between Escanaba, MI (where his first wife
Nettie was from) and several other cities around the
Great Lakes region, so I have lots of places to
visit in my future travels.
I also want to get back to the
Wilmington, NC area and do more research on Samuel's
parents. We've run into a massive brick wall for actual
verification of the family stories (the information that
I sent to you) and it will take some real digging in the
local records. Unfortunately, so many of them were
damaged, lost, or destroyed during the Civil War in that
area, it makes it much more challenging. Also the last
name "McCumby" was spelled differently then as the
current spelling of the name was what Samuel Thomas
adopted when he signed to sail on the British bark at
the age of 14 - that was the way it was spelled on his
seaman's papers. We think it was Cumba, Cumbo, Cumbee
or Combe...but haven't been able to find it exactly. A
number of the Scots that moved to that area dropped the
"Mc" after a generation or two. But it does pop up every
once in a while as McCumbee or McCumby in some
records. - The challenges of family research!
Best wishes and thanks,
Our Thanks to Kristy McCUMBY HYLAND for sharing her
McCUMBY Family History with us on the PGS Website!
If you have any additions and/or corrections please
contact us at [email protected] .