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Genealogical and personal history of Fayette county, Pennsylvania (Volume 2) online

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cago Railroad Company at Allegheny City
(now Pittsburgh, north side), continuing until
stricken with a partial paralysis that left him
incapable of physical effort. He lived in this
helpless condition fourteen years, dying in
1889, the direct cause being a broken leg:, the
result of a fall. He was a member of the
Reformed Presbyterian church, as was his
wife. He married, in Pennsylvania, Margaret
Smith, also born in Ireland, who died in 1887.
Her father died in Ireland, and she came to
the United States with her mother. Chil-
dren, all born in Pennsylvania: I. James, a



FAYETTE COUNTY



447



resident of Wilkinsburg, Pennsylvania. 2.
John (2), of whom further. 3. Elizabeth,
married John McCune. 4. Jane, married

Kecelty and resides in Norfolk,

\ irginia; has children.

(Ill) John (2), son of John (i) Lindsay,
was born in Allegheny City (Pittsburgli,
north side), Pennsylvania, in 1850. He was
educated in the public schools, and when
quite a young man learned the carpenter's
trade with Smith Crisswell & Company,
prominent contractors of that section. In
1876 he came to Connellsville, entered the em-
ploy of the Baltimore & Ohio Railroad Com-
pany as a carpenter, and so continues at
present (1912), having in 1886 been promoted
foreman. His term of service with the com-
pany covers a continuous period of thirty-five
years, which entitles him to the well-earned
title of "veteran."' Pie is a Republican in
politics, and a member of the Methodist
Episcopal church. He married, September
18, 1879, Mary B. Cooley, born in Connells-
ville, daughter of William and Letty Cooley,
oldtime residents of Fayette county. Chil-
dren: I. Bessie D., died aged five months,
July 10, 1881. 2. John Howard, born April
18, 1882, now chief clerk of division engineer,
Baltimore & Ohio, at Connellsville. 3. Mary
M., born October 12, 1884, died September
22, 1889. 4. Helen E., born March 21, 1891.
5. Gertrude, January 29, 1894.



The Hoop family of Connellsville
HOOP descend from German ancestors,
John Hoop being of the second
generation in the United States.

(I) Conrad Hoop, his father, was born in
Germany, and in 1844 came to the United
States, settling in the state of Maryland. He
worked at various occupations such as brew-
ing, coal mining, etc., until 1863. He then
came to Connellsville, where for twenty years
after he was successfully engaged in the gro-
cery business. He was a member of the
Presbyterian church, and an energetic, up-
right man of business. He married Mary
Landis, born in Germany, came to the United
States where she had relatives living in Cum-
berland, Maryland, and died in 1895. Chil-
dren: John, of whom further; Conrad;
Henry: Mary; Elizabeth; Katherine and Mar-
garet, both deceased; a son, died in infancy.

(II) John, eldest son of Conrad and Mary



(Landis) Hoop, was born in Allegheny coun-
ty, Maryland, January 20, 1848. He was
educated at the Poplar Lane school house.
On arriving at suitable age he learned the
blacksmith's trade at Uniontown, Pennsyl-
vania, beginning in 1867, and serving an ap-
prenticeship of three years. In 1870 he came
to Connellsville, where he established a shop
and smithing business, continuing success-
fully until the present time. In 191 1 he
erected his present commodious shop on
South Fourth street, having previously been
located on Main street. He is now one of
the oldest smiths in the city and commands
an extensive patronage. He is a friendly
rival of John Cunningham for the title of "the
oldest smith," both having served their terms
of apprenticeship in Uniontown, and both
locating in and passing their business lives in
Connellsville. He is a member of the Pres-
byterian church and a Republican. He has
held public office almost continuously, serv-
ing in about every borough office except
mayor or chief burgess. He was a member
of the first common council, elected after the
consolidation of the Ashman addition to the
borough of New Haven with Connellsville,
and has served several terms in that body.
He is a man of thoroughly businesslike habits
and is highly regarded.

He married, October 17, 1870, Sarah Ann
Caruthers, born in Uniontown, Pennsylvania,
daughter of John Caruthers, who came there
from New Jersey. Children: i. John H.,
married Lillian Zoller, and now resides in
Beaver county, Pennsylvania. Child: John
G. 2. James C, deceased. 3. Willam C,
married Margaret Soles, and now resides in
McKeesport, Pennsylvania; child, Harriet.

4. Charles Centennial, born in 1876, married
Anna Davis, and now resides in California,
Pennsylvania ; children, Sarah V. and Charles.

5. Clarence E., resides in Beaver county, un-
married. 6. Delia Mae. residing with her
parents.



The emigrant ancestor of the
BRITTON Brittons of South Browns-
ville, Pennsylvania, was
George Britton, born in Fermanagh county,
Ireland, in 1794, died in West Brownsville,
Pennsylvania, in 1859. He married there in
1824 Catherine Laird, born in County Cavan
in 1806, died in 1872. He was a miller and



448



PENNSYLVANIA



lived in Ireland until May, 1848, then he came
to the United States, settling in Washington
county, Pennsylvania. In September of the
same year his wife and six children camC;
leaving two, William and George, in the old
country. The following year, 1849, they
joined the others in Washington county.

Children: i. Jane, married James Brown
and lived in New Castle, Pennsylvania ; chil-
dren : Charles ; John, a member of the Penn-
sylvania legislature, twice elected mayor of
New Castle and two terms postmaster of the
same city; Lizzie; Kate; James; Ella. 2.
William, of whom further. 3. George, now
living in West Brownsville; married (first)
Elizabeth Watkins; children: Cornelius,
James and Richard; married (second) Har-
riet Claybaugh; children: Nellie, Catherine,
Georgianna. 4. Margery, married John
Watkins and had fourteen children: Susan,
Catherine, George, Eliza Jane, Henrietta,
William, Elizabeth, Matilda, John, Mary,
Annie, Daisy, Charles, Mary. 5. John, mar-
ried Anna Britton; children; Charles, George,
Lillian, William. 6. Ann, married James
Cauthers; child, James B., now a lawyer of
New York city, graduate of Amherst college
and Columbia university. 7. Catherine, mar-
ried William Noble; no issue. 8. Ellen, mar-
ried, February 15, 1866, James Williams, of
West Brownsville, who died February 6,
1912; enlisted in August, 1862, in Company
B, Twenty-second Pennsylvania Cavalry,
serving until the close of the war; he was in
railroad employ for twenty-three years, later
a grocer.

,(II) William, son of George and Catherine
(Laird) Britton, was born in County Ferma-
nagh, Ireland, in 1832. He came to the
United States in 1849 ^I'^d later settled in
Greene county, Pennsylvania, where he
worked in a distillery. He remained in
Greene county until after his marriage, then
moved to South Brownsville, Fayette county,
thence to Washington county, returning later
to South Brownsville, where he died in 1909.
He was engaged in the distilling business
all his life. He was a Democrat in politics,
and a member of the Episcopal church. He
married Melinda South, born in Greene
county, Pennsylvania, died in South Browns-
ville in 1910. Children: i. Anna, married John
G. Crawford. 2. John G., married Ella Sprin-
ger, of South Brownsville; he was superin-



tendent of the Pittsburgh & Morgantown
Packet Company many years, and for several
years was pilot from Pittsburgh to Louisville,
and one of the best known river men of the
day. 3. Ruth, married Robert Crawford.
4. Catherine. 5. Elizabeth. 6. William D.,
of whom further.

(Ill) William Duncan, son of William and
Melinda (South) Britton, was born in Wash-
ington county, Pennsylvania, near the old
National road, June 20, 1868. He was edu-
cated in the Brownsville public schools, and
until he was seventeen years of age lived on a
farm. He then became engineer on river
boats owned by the Pittsburgh, Brownsville
& Geneva Packet Company, and for fifteen
years was chief engineer on river boats run-
ning south from Pittsburgh. For the past
two years he has been engineer for the
Brownsville Brewing Company, having
charge of the engine room of the refrigerat-
ing department, the largest ice plant in the
county used in connection with the brewing
business. He owns the old homestead in
South Brownsville, which is still the family
home. He is a Democrat in politics, and a
member of the Episcopal church; Brownsville
lodge, No. 60, Free and Accepted Masons;
Brownsville Chapter, No. 164, Royal Arch
Masons, and the National Association of Sta-
tionary Engineers.

He married, in 1904, Daisy, daughter of

Allen J. and (Day) Mowl, of early

Washington county families. Allen J. Mowl
survives his wife, a resident of Washington
county. Child of Mr. and Mrs. Britton:
Elizabeth, born December 25, 1908.



The Rowe family of Uniontown
ROWE are of English parentage. Isaac
Rowe, of London, England, came
to the United States in 1873 ^"d settled in
Cleveland, Ohio, where he had banking con-
nections. In 1874 his wife and family joined
him in Cleveland where he died two years
later. He married Sarah Thoroughgood,
who yet survives him, a resident of Cleve-
land. Children: Isaac O., deceased; Frank
W., of New York; Ernest H., of whom fur-
ther; Gilbert W., deceased.

(II) Ernest H., son of Isaac and Sarah
Rowe, was born in London, England, April
20, 1872. His boyhood was spent in Cleve-
land, Ohio, where he was educated in the



FAYETTE COUNTY



449



public schools, graduating from the high
school with the class of 1889. For ten years
he was connected with the brokerage and in-
surance business in Cleveland and during
that period attended the night law school of
Baldwin University, being graduated and re-
ceiving his law degree in 1902. He has
never practiced law, but all his business life
has been as indicated. For ten years he was
an active, working member of the Cleveland
Chamber of Commerce, serving on important
committees and becoming thoroughly fami-
liar with the workings of a. modern chamber
of commerce in a progressive American city.
In 1909 he received a call from the city of
Lorain, Ohio, to become secretary of the
Chamber of Commerce of that city. He re-
mained there one year, then came to Union-
town in 1910 to accept a similar position. He
has placed the business organization of the
chamber in a healthful working condition and
the interests of Uniontown have been greatly
advanced. Tlie matter of civic progress and
expansion is one that ]\Ir. Rowe has carefully
studied and he has developed an ability that
has produceil satisfactory results. His
powers of organization have brought him
prominently forward and other associations
of business men have placed confidence in his
abilty. He is secretary of the Coke Pro-
ducers' Association of the Connellsville re-
gion, secretary of the Automobile Club of
Fayette county and secretary of the Fayette
County Road Supervision Association. He
has allied himself with national and civic as-
sociations and derives from them the advan-
tages such bodies confer. He belongs to the
American Association of Commercial Execu-
tives, the American Academy of Political Sci-
ence and the American Civic Association. He
is active and energetic along lines of commer-
cial development as well as in civic or polit-
ical improvement. Another association for
the public good in which he is actively inter-
ested is the Uniontown Library Association.
He is independent in political action, throw-
ing the weight of his influence and position in
favor of conservative businesslike conduct
of public affairs. He is an active member
and lay reader of St. Peter's Episcopal church
of Uniontown, of which his wife is also a
communicant.

He married, June 26, 1901, Osyth, daugh-
ler of William and Florence (Secord) Cal-



lory, of Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada. Chil-
dren: Victoria, born May 24, 1904; Osyth,
born December 16, 1905, died October 10,
1910; Patricia, born December 11, 1910.

This family is said to be of
NIXON Scotch ancestry. There was a
John Nixon, of Ridley, Dela-
ware county, Pennsylvania, a member of the
Society of Friends in 1683, of whom little is
known. There is a theory that he was the
father of Richard Nixon, father of Colonel
John Nixon, born in Chester county, a noted
merchant of Philadelphia, and one of the
founders, in 1770, of the Friendly Sons of St.
Patrick. He was chairman of the Committee
of Public Safety during the revolution, and
lieutenant-colonel of the Third Pennsylvania
Battalion, in the defense of the Delaware
river in 1776 and 1777. He it was who on
July 18, 1776, read to the people of Philadel-
phia, for the first time, the Declaration of
Independence, using a platform built for an-
other purpose in state house yard. The
Nixons of Uniontown descend from the Phil-
adelphia and Delaware county family. They
are Scotch-Irish, their progenitors settling in
Ireland before coming to America. There
is a William Nixon found in Georges town-
ship, Fayette county, Pennsylvania, in 1787, a
property owner.

(I) The earliest record of this branch is of
Samuel Nixon, a farmer of Georges town-
ship, justice of the peace, and from 1828 to
1841 associate justice of the Fayette county
court of common pleas and quarter sessions.
He was a prominent man, married, and left
issue.

(II) James, son of Samuel Nixon, was
born in Georges township, Fayette county,
Pennsylvania, December, 1828, died Novem-
ber, 1894. He was educated and passed his
minority in his native county. After his mar-
riage he moved to Westmoreland county, re-
maining, however, but a few years. He then
returned to the Nixon homestead in Georges
township, Fayette county, where he engaged
in agriculture until his death. He was a
Democrat, active and influential" in public
afifairs. In 1886 he was elected commissioner
of P'ayette county, serving three years. He
and all the members of his family were mem-
bers of the Cumberland Presbyterian church.
He married Sarah Jane Zerley, who survives



450



PENNSYLVANIA



him, a resident of Fairchance. Pennsylvania.
She was born January i, 1836. Children: i.
Dorcas Ann, married Harmon Custer, and
resides in Galesburg, Illinois. 2. Hannah P.,
married Ambrose Bradley, of Altoona, Penn-
sylvania. 3. Jennie, married Robert Golds-
boro, of Fairchance, Pennsylvania. 4. Will-
iam S., of whom further. 5. James, now of
Allegheny county, Pennsylvania. 6. Sarah,
married Richard Goldsboro, of Fairchance.
Pennsylvania. 7. Charles B., residing in Fair-
chance. 8. Alice, deceased, married Samuel
Artis.

(Ill) William S., son of James and Sarah
Jane (Zerley) Ni.xon, was born in Westmore-
land county, Pennsylvania, May 19, 1862. He
was educated in the public schools and
passed his earlier years at the home farm in
Georges township, his parents returning
there while he was a child. He began busi-
ness in 1886 at Fairchance, Pennsylvania, es-
tablishing a meat market. In 1890 he went to
Denver, Colorado, where he was engaged in
the grocery business two years. In 1892 he
returned to Fairchance and opened a meat
market, continuing until 1896, when he sold
his business. He engaged in the undertaking
and livery business in Fairchance, building
up a prosperous business, and in 1908 sold
out and came to Uniontown. He there
opened an undertaking establishment, with a
livery stable in connection. He is a graduate
of the Barnes School of Embalming, and has
been very successful in the two branches of
his business, both being conducted on thor-
oughly modern lines. The serious duties of
his profession have been attended to with
great zeal and carefulness, and his handling
of the delicate and difificult problems con-
nected with funerals has been done with the
greatest consideration and respect for all
concerned. He has every facility of the up-
to-date undertaker, and with his first-class
appointments has secured a fine trade in the
undertaking line in Uniontown. He is a
member of the First Presbyterian church, in
which he is an active worker, and is a mem-
ber of the Royal Arcanum.

He married (first) April 4, 1883, Rhoda,
daughter of Jacob and Melinda (Kendall)
Dawson, of Georges township, Fayette coun-
ty, of the well-known and prominent Dawson
family; she died March 19, 1896. He mar-
ried (second) April 23, 1900, Mary A., daugh-



ter of Captain James and Jennie (O'Don-
ovan) Abraham, of Georges township. Chil-
dren of first marriage: i. Ray Dawson, now
living in Fairchance, Pennsylvania. 2. El-
enora, living at home. Children of second
marriage : 3. Janet H. 4. William S. 5.
James A. 6. Donald R.



In a Hst of settlers in Georges
NIXON township, Fayette county,
Pennsylvania, in 1787, is found
the name of William Nixon ; where he came
from is not known. He owned land in
Georges township and was a farmer there
until his death. He was a Whig and a deacon
of the Presbyterian church. It is said by one
authority that he died on the ocean while re-
turning to his native land. He married and
left issue: Hannah, married Dr. J. Cory;
Moses, of whom further; Jane, married How-
ard Griffith; Isaac, Samuel.

(II) Moses, son of William Nixon, was
born in 181 2, died in Georges township July
22, 1857, on the home farm which now bears
the name "Oliphant farm." He received his
education in the public schools of his native
township, and in his later life followed the
occupation of a farmer. He was at one time
a member of the state militia, and in religion
he and his wife were Cumberland Presby-
terians. He married Louisa Bailey, born in
Greene county, Pennsylvania, but who moved
to Fayette county when very young, daugh-
ter of Eli, a farmer in South Union township,
and Perrie (Gregg) Bailey. Children of Mr.
and Mrs. Bailey: i. Presley, married and
lives in the west. 2. Jesse. 3. Ellen, married
Harriott Gaddis. 4. William, married Jenny
Patterson. 5. Louisa, of previous men-
tion. 6. Eliza, married William Barnes. 7.
Ruth Ann, married Ellis Linn. 8. Emily,
married William C. Dixon. They are all de-
ceased. Children of Mr. and Mrs. Nixon: I.
William, married (first) Mary Means, (sec-
ond), Mattie Richardson, and lives in Mon-
tana. 2. Francis, married Azel Freeman,
deceased. 3. Perrie, deceased, married Will-
iam Dawson. 4. Amanda, lives in Denver,
Colorado, married Charles Day Armond, de-
ceased. 5. Emily, married Jacob Renshaw,
and lives in Winfield, Iowa. 6. Moses Tay-
lor, of whom further. 7. Ellen, married Al-
bert Smith, of Connellsville, Pennsylvania. 8.
Samuel G. (q. v.). 9. Presley, deceased, mar-




una ^ran aent/f/ften



FAYETTE COUNTY



451



ried Carrie Robinson. 10. Anna, married
Thomas Ringland, a farmer of Winfield,
Iowa. II. Victoria, married William Law-
head, deceased, lived at Uniontown, Penn-
sylvania.

(Ill) Moses Taylor, son of Moses and
Louisa (Bailey) Nixon, was born in Georges
township, Fayette county, Pennsylvania,
March 22, 1849. His entire life, with the ex-
ception of three summers, when he was in
Iowa, has been passed in Georges township,
where he received his education. He has
owned a farm since 1889 and is to-day one of
the county's most energetic, enterprising and
successful farmers, having all modern equip-
ment and improvements upon his farm and a
group of buildings so unlike many tumble-
down farm houses that they would do credit
to any village or town. Cleanliness is the
slogan in everything attempted and every-
where is seen the glittering of freshly applied
paint. His interest in politics, local, state and
national, is great, and he has held several of-
fices as a Republican, among them being
school director, to which he has several times
been re-elected ; a member of the election
board, tax collector; on the county poor
board for three years and at present is road-
master. With his wife he is a member of the
Presbyterian church.

He married, September 19, 1878, Frances
Collier, born in Georges township, July 2}^,
1858, daughter of Merchant, a farmer in
Georges township, and Hannah (Hustead)
Collier. Children of Mr. and Mrs. Collier:
I. Frances, of previous mention. 2. Daniel,
born August 7, i860, died July 7, 1908, mar-
ried Mollie Sesler. 3. Alsesta, born Decem-
ber 16, 1862, married James Robinson, a
farmer of Georges township. 4. Loretta,
born October 6, 1865, married Robert
Crownfield, a farmer of Georges township.
5. Robert, born June 19, 1867. died January
IT, 1869. 6. Mary, born January 8, 1869,
married (first) Norval Medara, (second)
Robert Kennedy. 7. James F., born Octo-
ber 20, 1871, married (first) Ella Steel,

(second) . Children of Mr. and

Mrs. Nixon: i. Louisa, born October 30,
1879, married Albert Thomas; children: May
Thomas, born October 29, 1899, and Bessie
Thomas, born July 22, 1901. These children
live with their grandparents, who take great



delight and pride in them. 2. Hannah May,
uorn July 4, 1881, married D. F. Swaney,
road supervisor of Georges township. Chil-
dren : Daniel and Earl.

(Ill) Samuel Gregg, son of Moses and
Louisa (Bailey) Nixon, was born in Georges
township, Fayette county, Pennsylvania, De-
cember II, 1852. He was educated in the
public schools and remained at the home
farm with his parents until manhood. After
his marriage he began farming operations for
himself in South Union township, where he
owns a good farm and is successfully en-
gaged in farming and live stock. He mar-
ried, October 30, 1880, Anna Williams, born
in Uniontown December i, 1854, daughter ol
Isaac and Martha (Lancaster) Williams. Isaac
Williams was a brick manufacturer for forty
years, and founded the business now con-
ducted by his sons. He retired from business
fifteen years preceding his death in Union-
town, November 21, 1893. Children of Mr.
and Mrs. Williams: i. Thomas B., deceased,
married Emma Sheets, who survives him, a
resident of Morgantown, West Virginia. 2.
Lewis, married Rebecca Clark, both de-
ceased. 3. Josiah v., married Ellen Derrick,
deceased; he resides in Uniontown; is a
brick manufacturer. 4. Elliott, married Ada
Bailey; he is a brick manufacturer of Clarks-
burg, West Virginia. 5. Marjorie, died in in-
fancy. 6. Jenny, married Perry Markle, a real
estate dealer of Uniontown, Pennsylvania. 7.
Anna, of previous mention, wife of Samuel G.
Nixon. 8. Emma, married George Brooke, a
merchant of Uniontown. 9. Julia, married
Marshall Brooke, a farmer of Somerset coun-
ty, Pennsylvania. 10. Rev. Charles, a min-
ister of the Protestant Episcopal church, liv-
ing near Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. 11.
Harry, bookkeeper for the Elkins Coal and
Coke Company; married Grace Kiddie. Chil-
dren of Mr. and Mrs. Nixon, i. Pearl, born
September 2^^, 1881 ; married Charles Clark, a
lawyer of L^niontown ; children : Martha, born
1005; Helen, 1907; Mary, 1908. 2. Jessie,
born September. 7, 1883; residing at home. 3.
Ray, born August i, 1884; married May
Browning; child: Ray (2), died in infancy. 4.
Martha Jane, born July 25, 1885; resides at
home. 5. William Moses, born October 10,
1887: died in infancy. 6. Paul, born Decem-
ber 28, 1890. 7. Julia, born April 26, 1893.



45^



PENNSYLVANIA



8. Perrie D., born August 22, 1895. 9. Ruth,
born November 28, 1899.



This branch of the Don-

DONNELLY nelly family descends from
Michael Donnelly, born
in Ireland, who with his wife, formerly a Miss
Hastings, came to the United States in 1823.
They settled in Suscjuehanna county, Penn-
sylvania, where he was one of the pioneer
farmers.

They were both devout members of the
Roman Catholic church, and Michael Don-
nelly was a Democrat. He died at his farm
and is buried at Fredsville, Pennsylvania; she
died in 1871, aged eighty-one years. Children
who grew to maturity: John, Michael, Pat-
rick, Dennis, Martin, of whom further; Ed-
ward, James, Margaret, Eliza, Bridget.

(II) Martin, son of Michael Donnelly, was
born in Ireland, and came to the United
States with his parents in 1823, then but a
child. He was educated in the public schools
of Susquehanna county, and in his earlier
years was a farmer and lumberman. In 1849
he moved to Binghamton, New York, re-
maining until 1855, when he returned to Sus-
quehanna county. In 1856 he went west, set-
thng in Oconto county, Wisconsin, remain-
ing until 1859, when he again returned to his
boyhood home in Pennsylvania. Later, in
1871, he located in Scranton, where he died
February 7, 1908.

Martin Donnelly married Margaret, died
July 31, 1906, daughter of Thomas and
Honora (McDonald) Sheahan, both born in



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