Friday, September 28, 2007

Rev. John Newton Rippey, MD

Bobbie Ernst had mentioned him, and I vaguely remembered stumbling across his name a time or two. So I finally did a Google on him. He turns up as an Episcopalian minister in at a convention in Michigan in 1898. But this site has an interesting mention of him.

The Crawfords

Spent some time this week covering the Crawfords--Ada Rippey's sister married Fredrick Swartz Crawford and had four children. He was a Presbyterian minister appearing in the 1898 directory of ministers. Mary was, I fervently hope, "Mary E Rippey" born in 1858, not the Mary Rippey born to George Orson Rippey in 1859.

Ada went to Monmouth College in Illinois. I wonder if and whether Mary went to college. Her first child, Ada Vere, is born in Ohio, indicating maybe that Crawford had a post there.

A sidenote--it seems the norm that when the husband died, the wife lived with a daughter or stayed on the farm with the son who was farming it. But in the case of Elizabeth Black, it seems neither happened. First there was no farm to inherit. (I write that then wonder--couldn't he have been farming as well as preaching, but I don't think that's reflected in the census data.) Joseph was moving in this time period, from NY to PA by way of Nebraska. Mary had her two sons in 93 and 94, right when Rev. John died. And Ada was in New York City, probably not an environment Elizabeth would like.

So the best I can tell, with the possibility of confusion over the Blacks, Elizabeth headed back to the family farm with her maiden sisters (3) and bachelor brother.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

James Smith--A Near Miss?

One of the mysteries in my genealogy is William Smith. We aren't sure where he came from--was it from New England which was the source of most of the settlers of upstate New York, or from Pennsylvania, where most of my ancestors came from.

I bought a history of the First Presbyterian Church of York, PA off E-bay (please use the site, I own stock in the company ;-) ). Not from any real likelihood of finding something, but York's just north of the area Capt John Rippey and Mary Orson lived (about 20 miles according to Google Maps) and there's not likely to be a history of the Lower Chanceford Presbyterian Church available. The history is really short (the history of No. 9 church is longer and more detailed). [tongue in cheek on] But it did mention a "James Smith", both as being prominent in the church and, by the way, a Signer!!

Signer of what, you ask?? Of the Declaration of Independence, of course, you ignoramus! So today I did some googling. Alas and alack, I'm not an heir. [tongue in cheek off] Smith was from Ireland, emigrating with his father, being trained as a lawyer and practicing first in Shippensburg, PA and then in York. He was a delegate to the Continental Congress and an early organizer of the militia in York. Rather interesting guy, if rather different from the usual stereotype of the dour Presbyterian. This was the most complete bio I found (which is downloadable if you have broadband).

So I can say that Capt. John Rippey would have met James Smith, but that's it. But, given the concept of 6 degrees of separation, there's now 6 degrees of historical separation between me and George Washington. (me to grandfather William to Rev. John to Joseph to Capt John to James Smith to George Washington).

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Connecting Up Herald and William Harrison

I've written somewhere, perhaps in comments on, about trying to find the "county agent" that was painted by Norman Rockwell, and hooking him up with common ancestors. I thought I had succeeded, but yesterday found a correction.

The county agent was "Herald Rippey", painted while he was an Extension agent in Indiana. His parents, George C. and Hattie, moved around, as Herald was born in Indiana but was living in Washington state at the age of 6. George C. was born in Michigan in 1882, the son of William Culbert Rippey. William Culbert was the son of William Rippey, born in 1814 in Ontario County.

The problem, which I thought I'd worked out, was: William must have been a son of a son of Capt John Rippey (the only Rippeys in NY in 1820 were Capt John's sons), but which son. I thought Hugh was the most logical--the census showed the most sons of the right age range.

But it turns out William was Mathew's son, at least according to a message posted on a message board. I finally got around to clicking on the "ancestry community" tab in, which took me to message boards and the Rippey board contained a thread where the writer connected Mathew and William. (She was showing that two cousins had married.)

Who's William Harrison Rippey? He's a family genealogist mentioned by Donald MacKay Rippey in his "Susquehanna Saga" and, apparently, another son of William Culbert.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Contacting Others has the facilities for one to contact other researchers. I've not done that yet. Partly because I'm uncomfortable with the quality of what I've done (I tend to be an intellectual snob, more comfortable with critiquing others than putting my self forward). Partly because there's enough else to do.

But this weekend got emails through ancestry from two people, both asking about the Anderson Tree I'd done for Marjorie. I doubt either will gain from it, but I'm reminded I should be contacting others. Just looking up family trees on has identified several trees incorporating some of the ancestors. Given my ambition to cover the collateral branches that's rewarding. And once or twice I've been able to fill in the gaps from a tree. (Of course, I've mostly not documented the source. :-( )

This ties in somehow with Marjorie's news this morning of the mail she found waiting for her return from the west coast. Hopefully she'll post a description of the White linkage.

Saturday, September 8, 2007

Recent Changes

While Marjorie has been visiting her family on the west coast, I've been playing in Donald MacKay Rippey (Sr.) wrote "Susquehanna Saga", an account of Captain John Rippey and his wife, Mary Orson, and their thirteen children (2 sets of twins), as well as a visit he and his family made to Lower Chanceford Township, York County, PA and to No. 9 Church in Ontario County, NY. While I've put it on Google Docs, I haven't "published" it because I was hoping to contact his descendants for their permission first.

So this week I tried tracing that family forward and back, using the info Donald put in the Saga. I also tried filling out some of the other lines--Ann and Margaret, the older twins, married Thomas McCauley and James Stewart. The McCauley's moved with the Rippeys, but the Stewarts stayed in York. The Stewarts in York may exceed the Smiths in Ontario in numbers, so I don't have a sense of completion. But then, expecting completion in a work of genealogy is fatuous.