John W. (John Woolf) Jordan.

Genealogical and personal history of western Pennsylvania; (Volume 2) online

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Calhoun, a farmer, died in 1910, in Baldwin township. 4. David, a farmer,
died in Baldwin township. 5. William T., of further mention. 6. Elizabeth,
yet residing on the old homestead, unmarried.

(Ill) William T.. son of William and Margaret (Calhoun) Cowan,
was born on the homestead farm in Baldwin township, Allegheny county,
Pennsylvania, August 11, 1840, and now occupies a part of the farm on
which he was born. He was educated in the public schools, and spent his
early life on the farm. He began business life as proprietor of the Bell
House in West Liberty, Pennsylvania, running that hotel three years. He
then ran the Castle Shannon House, at Castle Shannon, Pennsylvania, for
three years. He then returned to farming, renting the Wilson farm for five
years. In 1883 he moved to his present home on the Brownsville road, having
inherited forty-five acres of the Cowan homestead. Diuring all these years
since, Mr. Cowan has been engaged in the real estate business and has
developed several residence additions, including the forty acre tract from the
Stauffer farm in Baldwin township and the Marysville addition to the bor-
ough of Carrick. He is also interested in the Colonial Trust Company of
Pittsburgh, and is well known in the business world as a man of energy and
probity. He is a Republican in politics, has served as township supervisor
and for six years was justice of the peace.

Mr. Cowan married, in 1867, Anna M. Bell, daughter of Robert Reed
and Elizabeth Bell, of Washington county, Pennsylvania ; Mrs. Cowan died
in September, 1909. Children: i. Robert, died in Carrick. 2. Elizabeth,

^^i/^ X ^


married Albert Wilson and resides near his parents. 3. Charles, a resident
of Snowden township, an employee of the Allegheny county roarl depart-
ment. 4. Annie M., married Jesse J. Doyle, and resides at Castle Shannon,
Pennsylvania. 5. Amzi, residing with his parents. 6. Howard, station agent
at Long View, on the West Belt railway. 7. Louis, died aged sixteen years.
8. Earl, resides in Carrick. '

The Zeigler family, as the name plainly indicates, is of Ger-
ZEIGLER man origin, and the various members have done much to in-
crease the material prosperity of the various sections in which
they have resided.

(I) Adam Zeigler, a native of Germany, came to America in his youth
and settled at Harmony, Butler county, Pennsylvania, where he became an
extensive land owner, and a farmer, clearing much of the land himself. He
and his wife were members of the German Reformed church. He married

Annie , and they had children : Gottlieb, a retired farmer, lives in

Harmony; Abraham, a farmer, died in Jackson township. Butler county,
Pennsylvania; David, a retired farmer, lives in Zelienople ; Henry, of further

mention ; Lizzie, widow of Sheaver, lives in Harmony ; Sarah, married,

and died at Harmony.

(H) Henry Zeigler, son of Adam and Annie Zeigler, was born in Butler
county, Pennsylvania, in 1837. After his marriage he commenced to farm
on one hundred and sixty acres of land which had been given him by his
father, making many improvements on the property, and erecting the neces-
sary buildings. He found much oil and coal on this land, and lived there
until about 1904, when he retired and now lives in Zelienople. He was in
active service during the Civil War, but was fortunate enough to escape
wounds and capture. He is a staunch Republican, and a member of the
Reformed church. He married Mary Sechler, born in Butler county, Penn-
sylvania, in 1840, and they have children : Nettie, married Henry Dom-
baugh, and lives at East End, Pittsburgh; Charles W.. of further mention;
William, a retail lumber dealer, lives at Duquesne ; Katie, widow of William
Hooper, lives at East End ; Anna, unmarried, lives in Pittsburgh ; Frank, a
physician, lives in Altoona, Pennsylvania ; Harry, a lumber dealer, lives in

(HI) Charles W. Zeigler, son of Henry and Mary (Sechler) Zeigler,
was born in Harmony, Butler county, Pennsylvania, October 20, 1866.
After being graduated from the Butler High School, he became a student
at the Renfrew Business College, from which he was graduated about 1888.
He then learned the carpenter's trade, which he followed three years, then,
with his brother, William, came to Duquesne, Allegheny county, and there
organized the firm of Zeigler Brothers, retail dealers in lumber which they
continued until 1907. when his brother Harry was admitted to the firm, and
it became The Zeigler Lumber Company, with Charles W. Zeigler as the
president. It is now the oldest firm of its kind in the section, also does some
mill work in connection with its regular routine, and employs from fifteen to


twenty men regularly. In January, 1914, Mr. Zeigler sold his interests in
this concern, and now devotes his time to real estate, in which the firm
was interested for ten years. He also represents four fire insurance com-
panies, is a director in the Times PubHshing Company, does some contract
work, and generally has several contracts to superintend at the same time.
Always an ardent supporter of the Republican party, he served his com-
munity as a member of the common council, in 1906. He is a member of the
Reformed Church, the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, and the
Junior Order of United American Mechanics.

Mr. Zeigler married, October 20, 1893, Anna, born in Johnstown, Penn-
sylvania, a daughter of David Williams, deceased. They have had children:
Irene, a graduate of Slippery Rock Normal School, is now teaching in the
Duquesne High School ; Laura, a graduate of the Duquesne High School,
is now making a special study of music; Beryl, a student in the Duquesne
High School.

One of the contributing causes to the greatness of the
GARRAUX United States has been the influx of French emigrants,

who came from their native land to better their worldly
condition, and to assist in the upbuilding of this country. They have suc-
ceeded in doing both, and there is no element in the great mass of nationali-
ties that goes toward making this republic the greatest on earth that has done
more toward this end than the representatives of France. The Garraux
family has been no exception to this rule.

(I) Isaac Garraux , was born in France, and emigrated to the United
States, with his family, when he had already attained middle age. He settled
in what is now Richland township, Allegheny county, Pennsylvania, became
an extensive land owner, and ^ assisted in clearing much of the land in his
possession. He married Lydia Garren, and they had children, all born in
the Province of Moliere, France : Adele ; Aline ; Rosalie ; Magdaline ; Ferdi-
nand, of further mention ;. Ulysses and William, who met their deaths at an
early age, in 1848, in St. Louis, Missouri.

(II) Ferdinand Garraux, son of Isaac and Lydia (Garren) Garraux,
was a very young child when he came to this country with his parents, and
was educated in the public schools of Richland township. He also became
a farmer, and was successful. He married Mary Anna Shepard, a daughter
of Robert and Hannah Shepard, and they had children : Esther, died young;
Hannah, married William Muekle ; Elizabeth, married C. S. Sanders; Mary,
married Leal Allen ; Henry A., of further mention ; Robert, married Nancy
J. Hartsell ; Isaac ; Frederic, married Anna Hulbert ; William, died young.

(HI) Henry A. Garraux, son of Ferdinand and Mary Anna (Shepard)
Garraux, was born in Richland township, Allegheny county, Pennsylvania,
September 20, i860. He was educated in the public schools of the town-
ship, and very naturally turned to agriculture as his life work. He has a
fine farm of seventy-two acres under cultivation, and is very successful in
his methods. He is interested in the public welfare of the community, sup-


porting the Republican party, and his religious afifiliation is with the Pres-
byterian church. He married Nancy Jane, who died in 1906, a daughter
of Lot L. Morrow, and they have had children : Edna V. and Mary E., both
at home.

John Thomas is a member of a Welsh family, representative
THOMAS of the best type of that race which has introduced into the

cosmopolitan citizenship of the United States a leaven of
their own peculiar virtues, a hardy and moral manhood.

His father was Evan Thomas, a native of Wales, who married in his
native land a fellow countrywoman, Mary Jones. Subsequent to his mar-
riage the couple removed to England, and finally, in 1879, came to the United
States. Their first choice of a home was Cincinnati, Ohio, where they settled
in 1879, but they remained in that place only three years, and in the year
1882 came to Allegheny, Pennsylvania. He worked in the steel works of
the OHvers, being what is technically known as a sheet steel heater, and one
of the most capable men the Olivers ever had in their employ. In the year
1905 Mr. Thomas went to Alexandria, Illinois, to make a visit to his son
David, who resided there, and while there died, at the age of fifty-nine
years. In politics, Mr. Thomas was a Republican, and both he and his wife
were members of the Presbyterian church. Mr. and Mrs. Evan Thomas
were the parents of nine children, as follows : Nathaniel, deceased ; Eleanor,
now Mrs. Edward Wible, of Aspinwall, Pennsylvania, and the mother of
two children, Mary and Rudolph ; Dlavid, a resident of Alexandria. Illinois,
where he is a sheet steel heater, married, and they are the parents of three
children, David, Evan and Edward; Mary, now Mrs. Frank Francis, of
Bellevue, Pennsylvania, and the mother of three children, Cecilia, Eleanor
and Lois; Sarah, now Mrs. Joseph B. Hester, of Edinboro, Erie county,
Pennsylvania, and the mother of three children, Helen, William and Mildred;
Thomas, deceased ; John, of whom further ; WilHam, deceased ; Maggie, de-

John Thomas, the seventh child of Evan and Mary (Jones) Thomas,
was born August 17, 1877. in England, during his parents' residence in that
country. They emigrated to the United States, however, when he was but
two years old, and took up their abode in Allegheny county, Pennsylvania,
when he was five, so that practically his lifelong associations are with this
region. He passed the major portion of his boyhood in Allegheny City, and
was educated in the local public schools. At the age of seventeen, having
completed his studies, he learned the trade of brick mason, and found work
in this line and various others for a number of employers until the year
1904. At that time Mr. Thomas decided to engage in business for himself,
and accordingly started contracting and building in brick work. He was
successful from the start, and since then his business has grown and flour-
ished greatly. In 1912 he came to Ben Avon. Pennsylvania, and there built
for himself a fine house at No. 240 Highland avenue, and there he resides
with his family at the present time. Besides his business Mr. Thomas is


very active in the life of the community in many ways. He is a member
of the Republican party and keenly interested in all political questions,
whether they have a local or general bearing. Both he and Mrs. Thomas are
members of the Pentacost Church, of Bellevue, Pennsylvania, and are rear-
ing their children in their own persuasion.

Mr. Thomas married, in 1899, Lizzie Hillman, a native of Allegheny
county, Pennsylvania, where she was born December 8, 1879. Mrs. Thomas
is a daughter of Charles and Theresa (Lewis) Hillman, and a granddaughter
of Allegheny county pioneers on both sides of the house. Her father and
mother were born there in the years 1854 and 1858, respectively. To Mr. and
Mrs. Thomas have been born three children, as follows : May, born June
4, 1900, Stewart, born December 2, 1902 ; Elizabeth, born June 26, 1905.

Many of the families of Western Pennsylvania who trace to
TUCKER foreign ancestors in recent generations came to this state
directly from the homeland. That to which the late Michael
F. Tucker belonged was an exception to this rule, John Tucker, his father,
born in Ireland, settling first in Wilmington, Delaware, whence he came
to Pittsburgh. Pennsylvania. In the latter place he was employed in Painter's
Mill during the remainder of his active life, retiring from business about
eight years prior to his death, which occurred about 1899. when he was more
than seventy years of age. His wife, Bridget, had preceded him to the grave
by several years, both having been members of St. James' Roman Catholic
Church. John and Bridget Tucker were the parents of : i. John, died in St.
Marys, Pennsylvania. 2. James, died young in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. 3.
Mark, resides in the West. 4. Patrick. 5. William, a resident of Pittsburgh.
6. Michael Francis, of whom further. 7. Kate, deceased, married John
Ford. 8. Mary, married (first) John Hanley, (second) John Tharp, and
lives in Elliott, Pennsylvania. 9. Annie, married Louis Spang, deceased,
and lives at Mount Washington.

Michael Francis Tucker, son of John and Bridget Tucker, was born in
Wilmington, Delaware, about 1864. died in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania,
November 29, 1903, having met an accidental death. He attended St. James'
parochial school until he was nine years of age. then beginning work in
Painter's Mill, where he was employed until he was seventeen years of age.
The following seventeen years he passed in the service of the Pittsburgh
& Lake Erie Railroad, and was then foreman of the assembling department
of the Schoen Car Company for about three years. In 1903 he formed an
association with the American Car and Foundry Company at Berwick, Penn-
sylvania, soon after assuming his new duties meeting with what proved to
be a fatal accident. He was taken to the Wilkes-Barre City Hospital with a
fractured skull, and there, despite heroic efforts by the physicians in charge,
he succumbed. Since his marriage his home had been in McKees Rocks and
Esplen, and in the former place he had erected a comfortable house at No.
619 Frederick street, still owned by his widow, who has recently built a brick
house at No. 650 Broadway, where she now resides. Mr. Tucker belonged


to the Brotherhood of Locomotive Trainmen, and was for fifteen years a
member of the CathoHc Mutual Beneficial Association. At no time in his
life did he pledge support unreservedly to a political party, at the polls choos-
ing his candidates from all tickets. At the time of his lamentable accident
he was in the full strength of vigorous manhood, was the centre of a wide
circle of sincere friends, approved by all.

He married, June 13, 1888, Mary Ann Bannan, born in Pittsburgh
West End, daughter of Patrick and Catherine (Gill) Bannan. John and
Lawrence Bannan, brothers of Patrick Bannan, fought in the Union army
in the Civil War, while Peter and James Gill, brothers of Catherine Gill,
were members of the same organization, the former holding officer's rank.
Catherine was a daughter of Patrick Gill, of Ireland, who after his wife's
death came to the United States with his daughter, Catherine, and son,
Peter, to join the remainder of his family in this country. He was a con-
tractor, an occupation followed by many of his ancestors, who erected not
a few of the manor houses on family estates in the homeland. Patrick
Bannan was born in county Galway, his wife in county Roscommon, Ireland,
both coming to the United States unmarried, their wedding ceremony being
solemnized in New York City when Catherine Gill was but sixteen years of
age. After residing for a time in New York City they moved to Pittsburgh,
where she died July 14, 1901, his death occurring in Minnesota, at the home
of a son, in October, 1909. Both were members of the Roman Catholic
Church, and are buried in the graveyard of St. Mary's Church, Lawrence-
ville, Pennsylvania. Seven children were born to them in New York, eight
in Pittsburgh, of whom the survivors are: i. Sarah Jane, lives unmarried
in Crafton, Pennsylvania. 2. Joseph, a member of the Pittsburgh police
force. 3. Mary Ann, of previous mention, married Michael Francis Tucker.
4. Agnes, married Jesse McLaughlin, and resides in McKees Rocks. 5.
Paul, a farmer, lives in Benson, Minnesota. 6. Michael, unmarried, makes
his home with his sister Agnes. Children of Michael Francis and Mary
Ann (Bannan) Tucker: i. Michael Francis, Jr., born April 14, 1889, a
member of the fire department, married Hilda Meyer, and has three sons:
Michael Francis (3), Edward, deceased, and Robert. 2. William Leroy,
born November 14, 1890, died in infancy. 3. Clement A., born July 13,
1893, died aged seven months. 4. Catherine Marie, born October 28, 1898,
died in infancy.

From County Limerick, Ireland, came William Dbrsey in
DORSEY 1852, settling in Eastern Pennsylvania, son of Irish parents,

and of an old Limerick county family, his parents living in the
village of Newport, where William was born in 1794. He had been a
farmer in Ireland, there had married, and had a family of six children.
He came alone to the United States, working for the contractors building
the Pennsylvania railroad for two years, then sending for his family to
join him. They came in 1854, and from that year the family home was in
Galitzen, Cambria county, Pennsylvania. In 1858 William Dorsey died.


He married Mary Carmody, born in Limerick, in 1802, died in 1856. Chil-
dren: I. Mary, deceased; married John Larkins, and Hved at Irwin Station,
Pennsylvania. 2. Anna, died at the age of fifty years, unmarried. 3. Wil-
liam James, of further mention. 4. John, deceased, a professor in Notre
Dame University, South Bend, Indiana. 5. Michael, deceased, also a pro-
fessor at Notre Dame University. 6. Nicholas, died at the age of twenty-one
years, his death caused by excessive bleeding from a cut from his own axe
while felling timber in Indiana county, Pennsylvania.

(II) William James, eldest son and third child of William and Mary
( Carmody) Dorsey, was born at Newport, Limerick county, Ireland, Sep-
tember 14, 1 84 1. He came to the United States in 1854 with his mother,
brothers and sisters, and after the family settled in Galitzen, Pennsylvania,
attended the public schools, and later attended a Catholic parochial school in
Indiana county. When his mother died in 1856 he left home and for a short
time attended St. Francis College in Loretto, Pennsylvania. He next went
to Indiana county, where he worked on a farm and in the lumber woods
felling timber. From Indiana county he went to Trenton, New Jersey,
working there in a bakery for one year, then going to Philadelphia, where
he worked in a cake bakery. On January 7, 1862, he enlisted in Company
E, Ninety-first Regiment Pennsylvania Volunteer Infantry, serving three
years and receiving an honorable discharge. He saw hard service with
the Army of the Potomac, participating in twenty-five battles and many
skirmishes. The battles he engaged in with his regiment were among the
hardest fought in the Civil War, the list including Antietam, Second Bull
Run, Cold Harbor, Gettysburg, Fredericksburg and Chancellorsville. He
safely passed through the dangers of war, and after his term of service
ended he settled in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, where his sisters were living.
For two years he was clerk in Myers & Sawyer's stationery store, then for
two years kept a hotel at Shaner Station, Westmoreland county, Pennsyl-
vania. He then opened a hotel in Buena Vista, Pennsylvania, but sold
out in a few months and purchased "Ten Mile Inn," with the farm sur-
rounding it, of which he was proprietor from 1869 until 1898. His prop-
erty was then taken by the Pennsylvania railroad under the law of "eminent
domain," Mr. Dorsey, however, receiving a fair price for his land and
"inn," the latter having been kept as a house of entertainment the preceding
eighty years. He then purchased the general store owned by James Mort
at Rock Run, which Mr. Dorsey conducted for eleven years, then moved his
store to Pine Run. While proprietor of "Ten Mile Inn" he also was pro-
prietor of the American House at Coal Valley from 1892 until 1898. After
retiring from the mercantile business he moved to Duquesne, Pennsylvania,
where until 1912 he conducted the Dorsey Hotel. In November, 1912. he
retired from active business and now resides at Moss Side Grove in Mifflin
township, Allegheny county. In 1889 he planted the trees now forming
the "Grove," and erected the building necessary for a fine picnic and amuse-
ment park, and there resides. He is a member of the Grand Army of the
Republic; Lodge No. 219, Free and Accepted Masons; Zerrubabel Chap-

]fU£<'^^^^Sl J^^ Y


ter, Royal Arch Masons, and I'ittsburgh Commandery, No. i, Knight.-, Tem-
plar. In religious belief he is a Spiritualist.

He married (first) in 1870, Mary E., daughter of James and Rosanna
Hamilton, of Irish parentage. Prior to her marriage she was a teacher in
the Pittsburgh public schools, and at Tcmperanceville and Shady Side ; she
died March, 1884. Mr. Dorsey married (second) in 1890, Julia Brossman,
a native of Germany, born there January 17, 1865, died October
20, 1914. Children by first marriage: i. James Hamilton, died aged fifteen
months. 2. William J. (2), died aged twenty-three years. 3. John, died
in 1912; an electrician. 4. Rosanna, married Charles Cole; children: Lois,
Theodore, Melvin, Olive, Clifford, and twins born October, 1914, unnamed.
5. Elizabeth, unmarried. Children of second marriage: 6. Anna, residing
at home. 7. Minnie, residing at home. 8. Charles, a chaufifeur. 9. Julia,
aged thirteen years. 10. Ethel, aged fourteen years. 11. Frederick, aged
nine years.

The homestead of the Stephenson family of this
STEPHENSON sketch, represented by the late William Wylie Stephen-
son, was in Cherry Valley, Pennsylvania, and was

held through several generations in the family name. They were a Virginia

family at an earlier date.

(I) James Stephenson, father of William Wylie Stephenson, was an
early settler of Washington county, Pennsylvania, where he followed the
occupation of farmer. He married Mary Jane Patterson, born near Phila-
delphia, and with her was a member of the United Presbyterian church,
his death occurring May 6, 1872, hers January 19, 1864. They were the
parents of but one child, William Wylie, of whom further.

(II) William Wylie Stephenson, son of James and Mary Jane (Pat-
terson) Stephenson, was born in Washington county, Pennsylvania, June i,
1861, died November 7, 1906. He was reared in his native county and
was educated in the public schools, completing his studies in Washington
and Jefferson College. His health was never robust and the extent of his
business operations was the administration of the estate that he inherited
from his father. His political party was the Democratic, which he ever
supported with his vote and influence. He married, April 20, 1898, Edith
Montgomery Walker, born in Washington, Pennsylvania, November i,
1861, daughter of James Thomas and Mary (Lewis) Walker, her father a
native of Barnsley, England, born August 4, 183 1, her mother born in
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, November 25, 1837. William Wylie and Edith
Montgomery (Walker) Stephenson had one son, James Oiler, born in Bow
Station, Indiana county, Pennsylvania, May 31, 1899. now a student in
Paden's Preparatory School. He is a member of the Bellevue Young Men's
Christian Association, the Knights of King Arthur, and, as does his mother,
belongs to the Methodist Episcopal church. Mr. and Mrs. Stephenson
in 1904 moved from Bow Station to Bellevue, Pennsylvania, in the latter
place purchasing a house at No. 543 Orchard avenue.


James Thomas Walker was a son of William and Harriet (Wood)
Walker, both natives of England, who in 1833 immigrated to Philadelphia,
later moving to Pittsburgh. James Thomas Walker attended school at
Meadville ; he was a stone mason by trade and with an uncle came to Pitts-
burgh to contract for the old court-house, both he and his wife dying in
that city.

Mary (Lewis) Walker was a daughter of Samuel and Jane (Meehan)
Lewis, her father born in Fairfield, Connecticut, July 4, 1794. The father
of Samuel Lewis was a soldier in the Continental army during the war of
the Revolution, attaining the rank of captain. He was a lad of eighteen
years when the news of the Boston Massacre reached his locality, and
leaving his work in the fields of his father's farm, walked two hundred and
fifty miles to enlist in a company of "Minute-men,'' participating in the

Online LibraryJohn W. (John Woolf) JordanGenealogical and personal history of western Pennsylvania; (Volume 2) → online text (page 54 of 72)