Lynne's Genealogy
Family Stories

Rodgers / Bonner Family

Michael Rodgers and Anna Bonner came from Arranmore Island, County Donegal, Ireland.  Michael emigrated in 1862 at the age of 20.  Anna would have been 14 yrs old then, and I do not know if they came together or if she came separately with her parents.  Their first child was born in 1865, and they lived in the Pittsburgh, PA area.  Michael was a coal miner.  I have no information on their parents, but those names are very common on Arranmore.  Anna died between 1900 and 1907, and Michael died after 1910.  I do not know where they are buried.

Their youngest son, William, met Mary McEvoy in Struthers, Ohio where Mary's mother, Anna (Brady) McEvoy ran a boarding house after her husband died.  William was working in the steel mills in the Youngstown, Ohio area.  They married in 1907.  William and Mary's second child, William, was Lynne's father.

McEvoy / Brady Family

In the late 1840s, Patrick Brady took his wife Susan McElroy and children to Scotland to escape the potato famine in Ireland.  I do not know which county they were from.  Their youngest child, Anna, was born in Hurlford, Scotland in 1849.

Patrick McEvoy was born in Ireland, probably Country Antrim.  At some point, he (perhaps with his parents and siblings) also emigrated to Scotland.  There he met Anna Brady and they were married in 1866 at Wishaw, Scotland.  In 1871 after birth of their third child, Richard, Patrick McEvoy left Scotland, came to the US and settled in Struthers, Ohio. He worked for a time, then sent to Kilmannock, Scotland for his wife and three children.  The remaining ten children were born in Ohio.  Patrick worked on the railroad.  Their last child, Catherine, died at birth in 1893 and Patrick died less than a year later in 1894.  He is buried in St. James Cemetery at the Villa Marie Convent, New Bedford, PA (right across the state line from Struthers, Ohio).  Anna died in 1925 and is buried in Calvary Cemetery, Youngstown, Ohio.

Thompson / Urmson / Platt Family

James A. Thompson was born in 1833 in Hunslet, Yorkshire, England to James and Elizabeth (Adamson) Thompson.  He emigrated to the U.S. in 1854, probably with his sister Margaret.  He settled in Ohio and moved to Mercer Co., PA in about 1873.  He was a coal miner. He died in 1910 and is buried in Belmont Park Cemetery, Youngstown, Ohio.

In 1856, James married Nancy Urmson, daughter of Ralph and Nancy (Platt) Urmson.  Ralph was a farmer.  The Urmsons were both from Lancashire, England.  They married there in 1825 and their first child, Adam, was born in Ashton Under Lyne, Lancashire.  By 1833, there were in Virginia and stayed there until about 1841, when the moved to Mercer Co., PA where Nancy Urmson was born in 1842.  She died in 1917 and is buried with her husband James A. Thompson in Belmont Park Cemetery, Youngstown, Ohio.

In 1913, James and Nancy's son, Benjamin, married Neva Clare Sheakley of Mercer Co., PA.  Benjamin worked as a conductor on the Pennsylvania Railroad and met Neva at Brest's Restaurant in Greenville, PA where she was working and living with her step-sister, Maggie (Calvin) Lackey.  Benjamin and Neva's first child, Ethel, was Lynne's mother.

The Urmson family traces its roots to the 16th century when a ship from Wales went down off the coast of England.  A baby survived and was rescued from a raft.  His parents were never found and he was taken to an orphanage in Ermshead, England. He was named William Urmson. 

Sheakley Family

The Sheakley name has been spelled as Sheakley, Shekley, Shakley, and other variations.  There is some indication that it might have been Shackerly originally.  There are several open questions about the Sheakleys -- where they came from, when they arrived in PA, and who was William Sheakley's wife and the mother of the Sheakley children born in the 1750s.  Look here to see my research on these issues.

By the 1783 tax assessment, William Shakely of Mt. Pleasant Twp. was taxed for 500 acres, and had 7 inhabitants and 2 negroes, 5 cattle, 2 horses, 10 sheep, 1 house, 1 barn, and the valuation was 703.15.0.  John Shakely of Cumberland Twp. had 250 acres, 4 inhabitants, 2 cattle, 4 horses, 4 sheep, 1 house, and 1 outhouse, and the valuation was 336.10.0.  George Shakely of Mt. Pleasant Twp. had no land, 3 inhabitants, 2 cattle, 2 horses, 4 sheep, no houses, and the valuation was 27.10.0.

I have a lot of land records from York Co. that I have not had time to study.  I will have more information posted here in the future.

William died sometime between the 1800 and 1810 census.  The 1800 census (census date is 8/4/1800) shows him in Franklin Twp., Adams Co., PA with one male over 45 and one female 26/45.  He does not appear in the 1810 Census.  A will has not been found for him, so it is likely that he disposed of his land before his death.  His son, John Sheakley, sold his land and moved to Mercer Co., PA in about 1804.  It seems likely to me that this would be about the time that his father, William, died.

John Sheakley purchased 400 acres of land in Mercer Co., PA on the site of the current village of Sheakleyville.  The property included an unfinished log cabin, surrounded by a small clearing.  There he settled with his wife, Margaret (Jenkins), five sons, and three daughters.  In addition to being a farmer, John Sheakley ran an Inn for travelers.

Their oldest child, Margaret, was about 24 when they arrived in Mercer Co.   According to court papers found in the Mercer Co. archives, she was assaulted in early 1805 and gave birth to an "illegal begotten child" on Dec. 21, 1805.  The only other mention of this child that I have been able to find is an bequest in John Sheakley's will of Sept. 24, 1816 to "daughter Margaret Brush's daughter Ann" who is to receive monies when she is of age.

In Sept. 1815, John's son George married Mary "Polly" Wallace of Waynesboro, Washington Twp., PA.  Mary was the daughter of Thomas Wallace and Agnes Nancy Haslet.  There is good documentation that indicates that Agnes Nancy Haslet's mother, Esther, was our "original" William Sheakley's sister! In other words, George and his wife Mary were second cousins.  And another of the Wallace's daughter, Esther, married George's brother, William.  (Confused yet?)  Another of George's brothers, Moses, had a son, James, who served in the U.S. Congress 1875-1877, and was the Governor of Alaska 1893-1897.

George and Mary had one child, John Wallace Sheakley (known as JW), born in 1816.  Mary died in 1822 and George remarried and had seven more children.  George was a farmer and kept an Inn/tavern in Sheakleyville.  The village was named for him at ceremonies on July 4, 1822 -- the same day that his wife, Mary, died.

JW married Jane Maffat in 1844 and they had one child, John Wallace Sheakley, born in 1845.  Sometime before 1851, JW and Jane divorced.  JW moved to Cleveland where he became a merchant.  Jane married David Palm and moved to Polk, Venango Co., PA with her son John (my greatgrandfather).

In 1877, John married Emma Morrison and they had four children; Marshall Lee (known as Lee) b. 1878, Jennie b. 1880, Myrtle b. 1886, and Neva (my grandmother) b. 1890.  Unfortunately, Jennie died in 1897, Emma died in 1898, and Lee in 1902, all of TB.  John continued to farm until his death in 1914.

Wallace / Haslet Family


Maffat / Dray Family


Morrison / White / Farrell Family


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