George R. Prowell.

History of York County Pennsylvania (Volume II) online

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graduated by Miss Nettie Wilson, at the age
of nineteen years. He began work on the
home farm, when ver)- young, ^^-orking for
his father until after his marriage, Alarch 11,
1891, to Miss Ida Richard, daughter of Isaac
and Leah (Mitzel) Richard. After his mar-
riage Mr. ShauU located on the place he had
received partly by inheritance and partly by
purchase, consisting of ninety acres. ' His
home was erected fifty years ago, and he is
now building an addition, 18x20. to the origi-
nal house. Mr. ShauU and his family are
members of the Hopewell Presbyterian Church
which ]\Ir. Shaull joined twenty years ago.
In politics he is a Democrat. He has two
children, Millard R. and Grace L.

George Shaull, the father of our subject,
was born in Chanceford township. York coun-
ty, and died at his home, in what is now East
Hopewell township, in 1903, after a long and



useful life of eighty-four years. He was a
devout member of the Hopewell Presbyterian
Church, and a useful and public-spirited citi-
zen, and a prominent and progressive farmer.
He was a lifelong Democrat, but was no of-
fice seeker. He married Miss Rebecca Wolf,
and they had the following children: Mary
W. Sechrist, deceased; Joseph; Agnes Shen-
berger; William H. ; Catherine E. ; and
George T.

rington township, York county, a prosperous
fanner, was born in Franklin township, Oct.
15, 1849, a son of Abraham and Eliza N.
(Slothour) Keeney. His father was of Scotch
and his mother of German descent.

Jacob Keeney, his grandfather, died before
William Henry Keeney \\as born, so not much
is known of him except that he was a mason by
trade, which calling it is presumed he followed
all of his life. He was a member of the Pres-
byterian Church, and in politics was a Dem-
ocrat. He and his wife, who was Leah
Slouthour, became the parents of these chil-
dren : Jacob, John, Abram, and Annie. Mrs.
Keeney died in 1864, aged eighty-five years.

Abram Keeney, the father of William
Henry, was born in York county, and after
taking the prescribed course in the common
schools learned the miller's trade, which call-
ing he continued to follow all his life. He be-
came an expert in his line, and at his death,
in February, 1886, caused by pneumonia, from
which his wife also died within two days of
his death, he was considered a well-to-do man.
They were both members of the U. B. Church.
In politics he was a Republican. They had
children as follows: Lucy; Lizzie; Annie;
Sarah ; John, deceased ; Jacob and George, de-
ceased ; Jerry, and William Henry.

William Henry Keeney was educated in
the district schools of Washington township,
and after his school days were over worked
at farming. In 1877 he purchased a farm of
124 acres in Warrington township, known as
the Henry Speck farm. In 1902 Abraham
C. Keeney (son of William Henry) purchased
the farm which is now occupied by William
Henry Keeney, and formerly known as the
William Minear Farm, which consists of fifty-
six acres, upon which he carries on general

Mr. Keeney married Oct. 22, 1871, Eliza
Kimmel, who was born in Washington town-
ship, daughter of David and Elizabeth Kim-
mel, and three children have been born to this
union, of whom Mary Alice and Harvey are
deceased. Abraham C. was married Sept. 4,
1900, to Elizabeth C. Seifert, who was born in
Cumberland county, close to Carlisle, daughter
of Peter and Sarah Seifert, and they live on
the home farm. To this union two children
have been born, Sallie Eliza, and Elsie Irene.
Mr. Keeney and his wife are members of the
United Evangelical Church.

In politics William Henry Keeney is a
Republican, and although he always does his
full duty as a citizen he has never accepted
public office. He is a very successful agri-
culturist, and an honest and upright man.

LEITNER J. BECK, chief burgess of
Lewisberry borough and president of the coun-
cil, was born Sept. 14, 1839, son of Capt. Sam-
uel Beck, and grandson of George Beck.

George Beck had these children : John,
bom Oct. 26, 1799, died Nov. 26, 1879, aged
eighty years, one month ; Henry, born Feb.
10, 1 80 1, died Oct. 18, 1868, aged sixty-seven
years, eight months and eight days; Capt.
Samuel, born June 24, 1803, died Feb. 16,
1895, aged ninety-one years, seven months and
twenty-two days; Charlotte, twin sister of
Samuel, died May i, 1833; Lydia, born June
I, 1805; Julian, born March 25, 1813; George,
a half brother of the above, born Dec. 21, 1820,
died July 31, 1881, aged sixty years, seven
months and seven days ; and Sarah, born June
16, 1818, died Sept. 4, 1862, aged forty-four
years, two months and eighteen days.

The late Capt. Samuel Beck was born at
Liverpool, now Manchester, York county, and
came to Lewisberry in 1830, two years before
it became a borough. Here he followed the
shoe business all his life. His title came from
his commanding a rifle corps at Lewisberry,
the name of the organization being the Lafay-
ette Rifle Corps. He married, July 4, 1830,
Caroline Mahan, born Jan. 17, 1806, and died
Feb. 23, 1884, aged seventy-eight years, one
months and six days. Their children were :
Charles Henry, born April 9, 1831, died Aug.
15, 1845, aged fourteen years, four months
and six days; Theodore, born May 11, 1833,
died Sept. 21, 1894, aged sixty-one years, four



months and ten days; Margaret Ann, born
July 14, 1836, married Franklin C. Smith,
died Sept. 27, 1870, aged thirty-four years,
two months and thirteen days; Leitner J., of
this sketch; Elton L., born June 23, 1842, died
Aug. 19, 1885, wife of John B. Laird; Char-
lotte D., born Aug. 6, 1844, widow of Dr.
William P. Nebinger, of Lewisberry; and
Mary Jane, born June 16, 1849, wife of Rob-
ert N. Wright, of York.

Except in the days of his old age the late
Captain Beck was one of the most active citi-
zens of this borough, working for its best inter-
ests and bringing credit and honor to the town
by the capacity with which he filled numerous
offices of responsibility. In his younger days
he was a Democrat, then became a Whig and
after the formation of the Republican party,
was one of its stalwart members. Given more
than the usual allotment of years, this vener-
able citizen passed away, within sight almost
of another century, honored 'in life and revered
in death.

Leitner J. Beck was afforded the best edu-
cational advantages to be secured in the
borough of Lewisberry until he was twelve
years old, when he was put to the shoemaker's
bench to learn the trade, one with which he has
been more or less connected through his whole
subsequent business life. In 1864 he entered
the Union service, enlisting in Company K,
152nd Pa. Heavy Artillery, and remained out
twenty-two months, during thirteen of these
■doing guard duty.

Upon his return to Lewisberry, Mr. Beck
engaged in the shoe business with his brother,
and they continued in partnership for a period
of six years. Then our subject decided to try
a change of occupation, and settled on a farm
•where he followed agricultural pursuits for the
succeeding eighteen years. Upon his second
return to Lewisberry he resumed the shoe
business, and at the same time assumed the
care of his aged father which he continued un-
til the latter's death.

In 1863 Mr. Beck was united in marriage
with Elizabeth Laird, daughter of Reuben and
Elizabeth Laird. She died July 20, 1890, and
her burial was in St. John's cemetery, at
Lewisberry. The children of this marriage
were as follows : Robert, a blacksmith, living
m York, married Barbara Benedict; Samuel,
a boilermaker, living in York, married Cath-

erme Dellington; Reuben, also a blacksmith
residing in York, married Annie Eikelberger;
Annie is the wife of Albert Hollinger, living
m Fairview township; John, who also follows
the trade of blacksmith, in York, married
Catherine Dushan; and Charles, a skilled black-
smith employed in the freight department of
the Pennsylvania Railroad Co., at Harrisburo-
married a Miss Brubaker. *"

In politics Mr. Beck is identified with the
Republican party and he has been frequently
honored by his fellow citizens. On numerous
occasions he has served as judge of elections
and at present is holding the responsible posi-
tions of chief burgess of the city and president
of the council. During his residence in the
country, he was supervisor of Newberry town-
ship. Mr. Beck is prominent in many social
organizations, particularly in the Lewisberry
Choral Society, of which he became a member
m March, 1904. He has much musical talent
and a voice which is well worth training Per-
sonally, Mr. Beck is a very pleasant man to
meet cordial, friendly and sincere, and he has
a wide circle of friends in business, public and
private life.

the prominent citizens and prosperous farmers
of York county may be mentioned James Nel-
son Kilgore, who resides on his farm in Lower
Chanceford township, where he was born Nov
18, 1862.

The first of this branch of the family to
come to America was Alatthew Kilgore, 'who
emigrated from one of the British Isles. He
and his wife Mary had a daughter Rebecca,
who married Samuel Holton, and went to the
frontier in Ohio, -where they lived in the first
cabin in Chillicothe. ^Irs.' Holton later re-
turned to her old home on a visit, and taking
her mother with her — each riding a horse —
brought her to the new home in the wilderness,
where Mrs. Kilgore died at the age of eighty-
four years. Matthew Kilgore went out with
a party conducted by Mr. Holton, but returned
home for the winter months, going back in the
spring, and there he died. :\Ir. Kilgore's chil-
dren were: Rebecca, born Oct. 5, 1763, mar-
ried Samuel Holton, and died in 1875 ; Thomas,
born Aug. 25, 1765, settled and died in West
Virginia, in 1851; George, born Aug. 23,
1767, removed to Indiana where he died



in 1850; ^klatthew and James, twins,
were born Aug. 22, 1770, the tormer dying in
1833 and the latter in 1835; William, born
Dec. 31, 1774, went to Ohio, formed a com-
pany of militia, was stationed at Lake Erie, and
died in 1814; John is mentioned below; and
Samuel, born Jan. 2, 1780, died in 1824, near
Chillicothe, Ohio.

John Kilgore, the great-grandfather of
James Nelson Kilgore, was born March 25,
1777, at McCall's Ferry, in Lower Chanceford
township, York Co., Pa., and received his ed-
ucation, such as it was, in the schools of his
day. He worked on the farm and in the old
stone still house which stood on the farm, and
hauled whiskey over the mountains to Balti-
more. He married Margaret Nelson, Feb. 17,
1801. She was a daughter of Samuel Nelson,
who later moved to Licking county, Ohio,
where he died. John Kilgore resided on the
old home farm for a while, and then sold it
and moved to a small place in the township,
where he died Dec. 30, 1858. Mr. Kilgore's
first wife died July 7, 1850, and he took for
his second wife Maria Kerns, who, after the
death of Mr. Kilgore, went West, where she
lived with a son. Mr. Kilgore's family were
all devoted members of the Presbyterian
Church, attending at Chanceford. In early
life Mr. Kilgore was a Democrat, but later he
turned to the Whig party and died a Repub-
lican. He was prominent in township affairs
and held many local offices. He was a man of
striking appearance, being over six feet tall, of
powerful build, and the possessor of a fine con-
stitution. To Mr. and Mrs. Kilgore the fol-
lowing children were born: Samuel N., born
Dec. 5, 1 80 1, married Mary Neel, of Lancaster
county, and died in Lower Chanceford town-
ship, Sept. 3, 1876; Matthew, born March 11,
1804, married Mary Wiley, and settled in
Fawn township, where he died Feb. 23, 1872;
Rebecca, born Aug. 9, 1808, married Robert
Densmore, and died in Peach Bottom town-
ship, Dec. 16, 1854; Robert, born Jan. 28,
1811, died July 10, 1877, at Brogueville; Mary
Ann, born April 30, 181 3, married John J.
Wiley, and died June 19, i860, in Fawn town-
ship; William H., born Oct. 30, 181 5, was a
graduate of medicine, studied under Dr. Hol-
ier, married Maria Holler, the Doctor's daugh-
ter and settled at Delta, where he died Dec. 7,
]886; Margaret Jane, born April 21, 1818,
married Alexander Manifold (uncle to the

present sheriff), and died J\Iay 17, 1883, in
Lower Chanceford township ; and John B.,
born March 6, 1822, died in infancy.

Samuel N. Kilgore, the grandfather of
James N. Kilgore, was born in the old stone
house on the farm, upon which he grew to man-
hood. The advantages for an education were
very meager in those days, and Mr. Kilgore
would be nearly frozen when he reached the
schoolhouse after a walk of three or four miles
in the cold. However, he received a good
education for that day, though he attended
school only in the winter months, while during
the summer he worked on the farm. In 1825
Mr. Kilgore rented a part of John Buchanan's
farm, which had been taken up by the latter.
The farm extended along Muddy creek, next
to Chanceford church. James Buchanan, son
of John, married a Miss Nelson, an aunt of
the grandfather of our subject. The Buchan-
ans went West about 1825, having sold part of
the original 500 aci'es. After his term of ren-
tal was up Mr. Kilgore went to Montgomery
county, Md., and rented a hotel at what is now
Neelville, which hotel belonged to Joseph Neel,
of Lancaster county, a granduncle of our sub-
ject. Mr. Kilgore continued the hotel for two
years, during which time he went to Ohio to
find a good site for a home, having been very
successful in the hotel business. He visited sev-
eral locations in Ohio, but returning home lo-
cated his family in Lower Chanceford town-
ship, in an old log house near Bridgeton, where
he went to farming, on the same tract of 400
acres which he had rented some time before.
Here he died Sept. 3, 1876, his wife surviving
until 1887. They were interred in the Chance-
ford Church cemetery. Both were memlDers
of the Chanceford Church, and helped to build
the brick church, the brick for which was
burned by Mr. Kilgore. For a number of
years Mr. Kilgore was a trustee in the church.
In politics he was a stanch Republican, and
served as school director. He was present at
the official starting of work on the Ohio and
Chesapeake canal, at which time President
Jackson threw the first spadeful of dirt.

Mr. Kilgore married Mary Neel, and the
following children were born to this worthy
couple : John Neel, was the father of our sub-
ject; Rebecca Ann, born Oct. i, 1827, mar-
ried Robert Duncan, who is now deceased, and
she is living in Emerson, Mills Co., Iowa;
James R., Ijorn in Montgomery county, ^Id.,



married (first) a widow, Mrs. Wheeler, nee
Holland, and (second) Sue Whitford, de-
ceased, and he resides in Harford county, Md.,
where he follows tanning; Matthew William,
born Aug. 27, 1832, married Grace Warner,
deceased, and died in Philadelphia, Pa., in
May, 1887; Margaret, born Nov. 20, 1834,
married Joseph D. Rowan, and resides near
Delta; Samuel Nelson, born Nov. 21, 1837,
married Martha Simmons, of Harrisburg, and
resides in Philadelphia ; Mary Ellen, born May
7, 1843, married George' F. Chalfant, and re-
sides in Philadelphia.

John Neel Kilgore, the father of James
Nelson Kilgore, was born on the old home farm
in Lower Chanceford township, Jime 24,
1825. He went to school in Maryland to an
old Dr. Warfield, a rather irascible old gen-
tleman, who was over fond of his grog, and
of a fiery temper. Young Kilgore managed to
get a good education, however, also attending
public school in Chanceford until he was
twenty-one years old. Mr. Kilgore's first
work was driving a team, at the age of ten
years. He hauled limestone from York Fur-
nace, having a man with him to help load. He
remained at home until Feb. 13, 1851, when he
married Eliza Jane Wiley and located on
ninety acres of the home farm. In 185 1 Mr.
Kilgore built the main part of the present brick
house, in 1867 adding the 20x16 foot addi-
tion. He later bought seventy acres and added
it to the first tract, having now 100 acres under
cultivation. Mr. Kilgore's first wife died at the
age of twenty-five years, Feb. 17, 1856, the
mother of two children: Mary Agnes, born
March 30, 1852, who died at the age of one
year; and Eliza A., who was born June 13,

Mr. Kilgoi^e's second marriage was to Miss
Crizzella J. Sides, born Oct. 27, 1832, in Lan-
caster county, across from McCall's Ferry. Her
parents were Jacob and Rebecca (Neel) Sides,
both of Lancaster county. Six children were
born to this union, as follows : Alvin E., born
Dec. II, 1858, died June 24, 1863; Mary Ann,
born Sept. 18, i860, died Feb. 2, 1863; James
Nelson is mentioned below; Luella May, born
Aug. 28, 1866, married Owen Wiley, and re-
sides in Hopewell township ; Rebecca Emily,
born Sept. 25, 1868, is the wife of Harvey
Sweeney, of Lower Chanceford township; and
Lizzie May, born May 24, 1874, died June
13, 1874. '

James Nelson Kilgore has resided on his
farm. Locust Lane, and engaged in agricul-
tural pursuits all his life. In his youth he at-
tended school for five or six months of each
year, going first to the home school in Chance-
ford, and after leaving the public schools he
spent four months at a private school kept by
Prof. James Parker, at Delta. After finishing
school Mr. Kilgore farmed for his father until
his marriage, Nov. 30, 1886, to Miss Mary
Catherine Hamar, who was born in Maxtic
township, Lancaster county, daughter of John
S. and Lucy (Long) Hamer. Three children
have been born to Mr. and Mrs. Kilgore.
namely: John Ralph, Grace Ernia, and
Charles Wilmer. Mr. Kilgore is one of the
prominent men of his community, and aside
from being one of the influential citizens of the
community is acknowledged to be an authority
on things agricultural. He farmed with his
father on shares until two years ago, when he
bought his present farm, on which he has since

Mr. and Mrs. Kilgore are members of the
Pine Grove Presbyterian Church, in which
Mr. Kilgore is an elder and secretary of the
Sunday-school. In politics he is a Republican,
and he has taken much interest in the success
of his party; he was recently elected school
director of Lower Chanceford township.

tired minister and missionary who served in
the Indian Territory for thirty-three years,
as missionary to the Creek and Seminole In-
dians, was Ijorn April 9, 1822, eldest son of the
late Robert and Jane (Whiteford) Ramsay.

Robert Ramsay was the son of John Ram-
say, who emigrated from Ireland, and his
mother was Margaret (McVey) Cooper widow
of William Cooper. They had a daughter,
Elizabeth, who married Henry Amrine, who
left three daughters, Margaret, Rachel and
Mary. Of these, Margaret married William
Ramsay, and has five children, Henry, Ida,
Mary, Sarah and Anna; Rachel married Ed-
ward Paden, and their children numbered eight
among whom are two sons in the ministry.
Rev. William M., D. D.. pastor of the First
Presbvterian Church, of Salt Lake City, ftah,
and Rev. T. Ross, pastor of a church in Alle-
gheny City, Pa. The third daughter of Henry
and Elizabeth Amrine, INIary, is unmarried.

Robert Ramsav was left an orphan at an



€ailv age and learned the trade of tanner, which
he t'ohowed nntil his marriage. He served as
a substitute soldier in the war of 1812. Mr.
Hamsay married, March 8, 1821, Jane White-
ford, of Harford Co., Md., and after marriage
engaged in farming, at which he continued un-
til the infirmities of age caused him to desist.
His wife, Jane Whiteford, was the elder of the
two daughters of Hugh and Elizabeth (Ross)
Whiteford, the latter of whom was the daugh-
ter of Joseph and Jane (Graham) Ross. Eliza,
the vounger daughter of Hugh and Elizabeth
\\'hi'teford,was married to Hugh Whiteford, of
Harford Co., :\Id., son of William and Sarah
(Siemens) Whiteford, and their children
were: William Siemens, Hugh Ross, James
Ross, Cunningham, Sarah Slemons and Eliza-
"beth. On the marriage of her younger daugh-
ter, Elizabeth Whiteford, who was the posses-
sor of two farms, one in Harford conty, Md.,
and the one that was her native home in what
is now the borough of Delta, gave the former
to her younger daughter and the latter, called
the old Ross farm, to her elder daughter. In
the year 1827, she and her husband, with their
children, took posse'ssion of this farm, which
was the birthplace of Elizabeth Ross and also
of her two brothers, James and Hugh. The
same house that in 1750 was built and occupied
by James Graham, still stands and is now oc-
cupied by the sixth generation of his descend-
ants. Hugh Ross died young, but his brother,
James, lived to attain great distinction in the
legal profession, and was promoted by his
State to a seat in the United States Senate.
He married and had two sons, George and
James, who studied law, and he had one daugh-
ter, Jane, who married Edward Coleman.

Robert Ramsay had nine children : .James
Ross ; John Cunningham ; Hugh Whiteford :
William; Robert Nelson; Joseph Graham;
Sarah ElizalDeth, who married John A. Dins-
more; Thomas Cooper; and Samuel Martin.
Six of these children still survive, are married
and have reared families. Of these Hugh W.
has one daughter, Eliza, living, and he and his
wife live with her and her husband, Morgan
Whiteford, in the city of Baltimore. He had
one son, Edgar, deceased. William Ramsay's
family has been already mentioned. Robert
Nelson has six sons : Elmer, a farmer of Har-
ford Co., Md. ; Frederick, telephone superin-
tendent of Harford county, Md. ; Albertus,
United States mail carrier in Harford county.

]\Id. ; John, a merchant and carrier in
the same county; Hugh Clarence, a min-
ister and missionary to China; and Charles
F., cashier in the Stewartstown Bank of York
Co., Penn. The family of Joseph Graham
Ramsay, deceased, are as follows : Ebenezer
Wilson is a railroad employe in Middletown,
Pa., and Addie, who married Delmer Thomp-
son, a farmer of York county, has five small
children, Edith, Gertrude, Graham, Russel and
Charles. Sarah Elizabeth Ramsay married
John A. Dinsmore, and has four daughters ;
Rebecca ; Jane, who married Edward Everett
McConkey, and lives in Philadelphia; Carrie,
married to James L. McCaul, of Minneapolis,
!\Iinn. ; Annie; and Ross. Thomas Cooper
Ramsay has three sons and three daughters :
Robert Ross, a farmer of York county;
Howard; Russel, teller in the First National
Bank, of Delta, Pa. ; Louella, who married
Hugh Kilgore, a merchant; Jennie, who mar-
ried William Malone, a farmer of York county ;
and Eveline, who married Porter Johnson, a
brickmaker of Harford Co., Maryland.

James Ross Ramsay assisted his father with
farm work during the summer, and attended
school in winter until his twentieth year. In
the meanwhile he became a Christian and de-
cided to prepare for the ministry. In August,
1842, he commenced studying Latin under the
instruction of A. D. Mitchell, and in the fol-
lowing November entered the York County
Academy, where, under the instruction of the
Rev. Stephen Boyer and Daniel Kirkwood,
Esq., he studied Latin, Greek, Algebra and
Geometry, during one year, after which he
taught school for six months in Delta. In May,
1844, he entered Jefferson College, from which
he graduated with the degree of A. B., in the
autumn of 1846. Returning home, he went at
once to Princeton Theological Seminary, and
pursuing the regular course of three years
study, in May, 1849, prepared to engage in
missionary work among the Creek Indians, to
which he had been appointed by the Presby-
terian Board of Foreign Missions, having been
previously licensed by the Presbytery to

On leaving Princeton Mr. Ramsay went to
Ohio, and there May 29, 1849, was united in
marriage with Miss Jane Martha Livingston.
On re^'urning home Mr. Ramsay was ordained
to the Gospel ministry by the Presbytery, June
20, 1849. Soon after this he started on his



\vestern journey to his field of labor in the In-
dian Territory. But few western railroads at
that time were completed and he was compelled
to travel mostly by river steamboats. Taking
passage at Cincinnati, Ohio, he descended the
Ohio to its junction with the Mississippi, fol-
lowed that river to the mouth of the Arkansas,
up which he sailed to the border of Indian Ter-
ritory, at Fort Smith, whence after a detention

Online LibraryGeorge R. ProwellHistory of York County Pennsylvania (Volume II) → online text (page 61 of 201)