Monday, September 1, 2014

Matrilineal Monday ~ Jane Hunter McAlpin

After seeing my last blog post about a branch of the Hunter family on my mother's side, a reader of this blog asked about where the name Hunter came from on my father's side.

Hunter is the maiden name of my third great grandmother, Jane Hunter, who married James McAlpin.

Jane Hunter was briefly mentioned in a post about my McAlpin line. According to Pyle, Smith and Allied Family Histories (Privately published, 1951) which I have mentioned before, she was born on May 11, 1786, in Muckamore, Antrim, Ireland. She married James McAlpin on July 14, 1809, at Antrim, Ireland, and had one or two children before immigrating to New York, on the Jupiter, in 1811. The family soon settled in Dutchess County, New York, up the Hudson River from New York City.

I believe Jane Hunter and James McAlpin were Scotch-Irish.

Most of this information is from secondary sources (though I have seen enough references to the immigration on the Jupiter that I'm pretty sure that's accurate) so please don't go believing all this is fact - it's simply a place to start if anyone wants to do some research in Antrim County, Ireland, which is where research would need to be done to find her parents' names.

Jane's children were baptized at the Presbyterian Church in Pleasant Valley, Dutchess County, New York. In June, the New York Genealogical & Biographical Society made a book available in which I could confirm the McAlpin children's baptisms.

Arthur C. M. Kelly, Vital Records of Presbyterian Church Pleasant Valley, Dutchess County, NY 1793-1947
(Rhinebeck, NY: Kinship, 2007). Page 131 (image 135) from the index.

After her husband died in the cholera epidemic of 1849, and was buried in what is now Beacon, Dutchess County, New York, Jane is found in Brooklyn in the U.S. Federal Censuses in 1850, 1860, and 1870, with different combinations of children and grandchildren.

Friday, August 29, 2014

Pennsylvania Death Certificates and FindAGrave

I  have not blogged very much this month, and one of the (many) reasons is because I have been exploring the Pennsylvania Death Certificates (and census records) on and finding memorials for these Pennsylvania relatives on As I find or set up the memorials, I link them so if you go to one of the memorials, you can click through to parents, siblings, and children.

The hyperlinks for Samuel and Catherine below bring you to their FindAGrave memorials.

My third great grandfather, Samuel K. Hunter (d. 1863), and his wife, Catherine Carr (d. 1891), had nine children. Using the death certificates and exploring FindAGrave, I was able to fill in a few blanks about their children and grandchildren.

1) Mary J. Hunter was born about 1841 and died as Mary J. Babcox in 1870. I don't know who she married, but she had two daughters, Kate (1864-1868) and Elva (1866-????). Mother Mary and daughter Kate are buried in the Hunter family plot at Union Dale Cemetery.

James Hunter
2) James Hunter (1844-1902) is my second great grandfather, whom I have written about before. He married Mary Freeland and had ten children. He, his wife and some of their children have their own plot at Union Dale Cemetery.

3) John Kirk Hunter (1845-1921) died in Saegertown, Crawford County, Pennsylvania. He married Emma Bailey (1848-1926) and had three children. He was a firefighter and fire chief in Allegheny City. He, his wife, and his son are buried in Saegertown Cemetery.

4) Ann (or Anna) E. Hunter (1848-1878) is buried in the Hunter family plot at Union Dale Cemetery.

5) Susan E. Hunter (1850-1922) married William White and had two children. She is buried in Allegheny Cemetery, but not with her husband.

6) Isabella Hunter (1853-1918) married Albert S. Glenn (1852-1934). They had one daughter, Edith. All three are buried together at Union Dale Cemetery.

7) Emma Maria Hunter (1854-1871) died young and is buried in the Hunter family plot at Union Dale Cemetery.

8) Robert William Hunter (1856-1876) is also buried in the Union Dale Cemetery Hunter family plot.

9) Lillie D. Hunter (1858-1933), the last of these siblings to die, died just before her 75th birthday. She married James Wallace Thompson (1848-1924). They are buried together in Homewood Cemetery, along with their two sons.

And this is just one branch of my Allegheny, Pennsylvania, ancestors from my maternal grandmother's side.

Monday, August 4, 2014

Civil War Blogpost Challenge ~ Military Monday

For Bill West's Civil War Blogpost Challenge, I looked at my database to see which of my ancestors might have fought in the U.S. Civil War (150 years ago). I find that I can't add much more to what I have already shared about the service of my ancestors in the Civil War.


My maternal grandmother's ancestors were in Allegheny County, Pennsylvania. I have written about my second great grand uncle, James M. Lysle, who died in Virginia, serving for the 63rd Regiment Pennsylvania Volunteers. I share his picture here again. His youngest brother, George Lysle, my second great-grandfather, was born in 1845, possibly too young to serve, but working in a coal company, perhaps he provided help in the war effort in other ways.

There were a few other Alstons and Lysles (great-uncles and/or distant cousins) who served from Allegheny County, Pennsylvania. The Pennsylvania, Veterans Burial Cards, 1777-1999, at, is a good resource to determine Civil War service. I do not find my third great grandfather, James Freeland, who died on March 1, 1863, at about age 48, according to his gravestone (see his FindAGrave memorial) or my third great-grandfather, Samuel Hunter, who also died in 1863 at about age 49, in this database, or in Civil War records at, so it appears that they may not have fought, but perhaps served in other ways.


My maternal grandfather's father's family was in Maine (see second great-grandfather Henry Copeland's draft information here). It looks like he was exempted from service.

My maternal grandfather's mother's family was in Chicago. I wrote about what I could find about second great-grandfather Samuel S. Greeley's service (building sewers) here.


Thursday, July 24, 2014

Cousins Day ~ Throwback Thursday

In honor of July 24 being Cousins Day, I share the following picture from the summer of 1982.

My grandmother, Helen (Hunter) Copeland (1907-1990) is in the middle, with her sister, Margaret Hunter (1905-1994) sitting next to her. She is surrounded by her three daughters, three sons-in-law, and nine grandchildren. She couldn't be any happier!

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Tombstone Tuesday ~ Henry and Jane Sewall

Several years ago, my husband and I explored the First Parish Burying Ground in Newbury, Massachusetts, where some of my early immigrant ancestors are buried.

My husband took the following picture of my 8th great-grandfather's gravestone.

MARCH YE 25 1646
DIED MAY YE 16, 1700
PSAL - 27 - 10.

Henry died on May 16, 1700, and his wife, Jane, died eight months later, on January 13, 1700/01.

The gravestone was erected by his eldest son, Justice Samuel Sewall.

Psalm 27, verse 10 reads: "When my father and my mother forsake me, then the Lord will take me up."