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Foster Family

 

History of the Foster Family
Compiled 1998
by E. L. Marshall


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The following is a transcription of a history of the Foster family written by D. I. Foster in 1902.  

Back checking of this history has shown it to be amazingly accurate. The only major discrepancy is in the portion of Chapter One which says that Arthur Foster was the father of Basil, Richard, Lewis, etc. and that he had come from Myrickville, Massachusetts. It seems that the father was actually Thomas Foster (born 4 Feb 1711 in Queen Anne Parish, Prince George's County, MD) and the mother was Sarah Cross (born 16 Dec 1716). Thomas' father was John Foster and his mother Elizabeth Green (married 15 Feb 1708 in Prince George County Maryland). Sarah Cross' parents were George and Elizabeth Cross. This comes from the Parish Register, Queen Anne Parish, St. Barnabas Church, Leeland, Prince George's County, Marland and from county land probate, and marriage records. Information from Wayne E. Dawson, Clayton, California (a Foster descendant).

It was prepared from a original copy owned by Leo Foster and later by his daughter Leona F. Marshall.  The margin notations mentioned occasionally were made by her.  The original spelling and punctuation has been retained.  The final section "ADDITIONAL FOSTER HISTORY" is missing from this copy.  Printed on the same size paper with the same type face, it appears to have been an addendum.  Leona received a copy from Morgan Reade in 1991.

It is thought that this history was originally privately printed and distributed among the Foster family.  No copyright appears in the original printing and it is believed to be in the public domain.  Permission for non-profit reproduction of this transcription may be obtained from the compiler.

E. L. Marshall
Compiled 1998
All Rights Reserved

Last updated on December 3, 1998 (FosteRing link added)

HISTORY OF THE FOSTER FAMILY
By D. I.
Foster 

It is only fitting that the one who has worked so hard and faithfully in getting the data, and then in writing the following pages, should have a place of providence in this work.  And as he will not take such a place himself, the printer of this work has taken the trouble to secure a photograph of Mr. Foster, from which the above excellent engraving has been made.  I also have gathered some data regarding Mr. Foster's career, and so append the following short history of his eventful and strenuous life.

D. I. Foster was born on Broad Top Mountain, Bedford Co., Penn., June 7th, 1856.  His father was Miles Foster and his mother's maiden name was Caroline Figard.

Two catastrophes of his early years have followed him through all his life.  The first was a scrofulus attack, when he was only a baby, which destroyed the right cheek bone, and almost totally destroyed the sight of his right eye.  The second was the crippling of his right hand for life, by being twice bitten by a copperhead snake, when he was eight years old.

But more serious to him than those physical disadvantages, has been another handicap which the conditions of his youth put upon him.  And that handicap was the lack of schooling.  He was only in school one day previous to his ninth birthday, and in all did not receive to exceed eight months schooling, this being scattered out over a period of six years. He has however labored faithfully and successfully to overcome this disadvantage, and has surmounted obstacles that would have appalled many more favored individuals.

Mr. Foster has never been an office seeker, and yet few people have served societies and the public generally as faithfully as he.  His first experience was when he was only eighteen years old.  At that time his grandfather was elected a supervisor of highways and a tax collector, but owing to rheumatism could not serve.  In this dilemma the subject of our sketch, at the solicitation of the town board, took up the work and did it faithfully and well.  Two years later, in February, 1876, although lacking four months of being twenty-one, he was nominated and elected as inspector of elections on the republican ticket.  But as he spent the summer and autumn in Maryland he was prevented from serving.  He has been secretary or treasurer of the board of stewards of the Rapatee M. E. church since 1893.  Was collector of Maquon township in 1889. Has served two terms as constable.  Served five years as secretary of Round Top Grange, No. 1293. Has been secretary of Lyons Cemetery association since 1890.  Has been township president of the county S. S. association four years, and is now secretary of  that organization.

Mr. Foster was married at Saxton, Penn., during the holidays of 1879, to Rebecca E. Ramsey, and together they moved to Rapatee in 1883.   They have ten children, eight of whom are yet living.

In religion Mr. Foster has ever been earnest and true to his belief.  He first joined the Church of God or Winebrennarian branch of the Baptist church in 1878.  After he moved to Rapatee, he and Prof. R. D. Hill called the meeting that resulted in the building of the Rapatee church.  He was the first superintendent of its Sunday school, and in 1893 put his membership in with that church.

In politics he has voted with the democratic party since he was twenty-two years of age.

Since coming to Rapatee in 1883 he has been continuously in the coal business, operating extensively at the present time a bank in the Cope farm.

But one of the special features of Mr. Foster's life work has been his contributions for newspapers.  His first article was written in May, 1880, and since then he has been a continual contributor to the press. In 1881 and 1882 he wrote a historical article in serial form, containing seventy-three chapters, over the name T. E. LePhone.  It was published in the Sexton (Penn.) Independent.  During the past sixteen years he has written over three thousand letters to forty-five different newspapers, in nine different states.  He has been the regular item gather for the Knox county democratic paper for sixteen years; for the London Times for fourteen years; and for the Galesburg Republican-Register for eleven years.

These brief facts only go to show what a busy and useful life Mr. Foster has lived, and how struggling with adverse circumstances and conditions he has gained a very large share of real success.

W. W. Vose, London Mills, Ill., Oct. 1, 1902.

STATEMENT

In our early childhood days we were placed where we came in contact with many very old people, and we would leave our play at any time to hear them tell of the trying times between 1788 and 1813. During the summer of 1869 an old folks gathering was held at the home of Benjamin Whited, about one-half mile from where the first permanent cabin was built on Broad Top, and we visited the stot [spot - ELM] with several of the crowd.  Among them were Christopher Osborn born about 1790, Dr. Wesley Duval who was some younger, Dr. Asa Duval who was just 69 years old then.  Their good wives were with them.  They pointed out the spot where the Indians had fired on Basil Foster, Dr. Jeremiah Duval and Benjamin Penn, and wished there was some one to write a history of the settlement and keep a record of the people who had opened up that grand old mountain settlement.  And while at that time we could scarcely read and could not write a line we resolved that if spared we would do something in that line at some time.   Eleven years later we were able to give the public our History of the Broad Top Settlement and thirty-three years later we give the Foster family our present work.

In the beginning this work we took from the old records such name as Johnstone, Schwartz, Shaupt, but thought best to drop them for more modern forms.
D. I. Foster  

HISTORY OF THE FOSTER FAMILY

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A Wonderful Story, Covering Nearly Two Hundred Years of Time, and half the United States in Territory

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By D. I. Foster, Rapatee, Ill.

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CHAPTER ONE

 

In beginning the history of our branch of the Foster family, we have no apology to offer for the name, but we beg pardon for all grammatical and other errors as our schooling was confined to less than eight months, scattered over a period of twelve years.

Now we do not claim that Adam's surname was Foster or even that one of that name was a passenger on the Mayflower. But we do claim that for one-hundred and seventy-five years we have taken an active part in the settlement of North America.

The Foster family first settled on the bleak hills of Massachusetts near Myrickville, where the bones of many of our forefathers sleep.

About 1760 Arthur Foster, with a number of his neighbors, went to the sea-coast and loaded their few belongings on a sailing vessel of the style of that time and started down the coast to the then new settlements of Maryland. He entered the Chesapeake Bay and pushing up the Potomac river he settled near the present town of Hyattsville, Prince George's county, where he reared a large family, of which we know something.   He had five children that emigrated north, viz.: Basil, Richard, Lewis, John and Mrs. Ruth Foster Lewis.

During the French and Indian wars, from 1754 to 1760, many young men from Prince George's county, Maryland, had been north to the mountains and valleys along the different branches of the Juniata river in Pennsylvania, which had fired the hearts of the youngest settlers, who were already feeling the scarcity of game and the increased price of land.  Hence in the spring of 1778 a considerable number of men banded together, and started north.  Their entire outfit, as well as women and children, going on horseback.

We are indebted to the late Dr. Asa Duvall for a few of the names of these settlers:  Dr. Jeremiah Duvall and wife, Rev. Thomas Johnston and family, Eli Lewis and wife, Benjamin and Richard Penn, Basil Foster and family, John Foster and family, Lewis and Richard Foster.

Simultaneously a band of brave emigrants left Buck's county, Pa., for the same destination.  The Maryland crowd came by the way of Ft. Pitt (now Bedford, Pa.)   The Buck's county people by the way of Ft. Standing Stone (now Huntingdon Pa.) They selected a spot at the mouth of Shoup's Run, where it empties into the Raystown branch of the Juniata river, near where Saxton, Pa. now stands.  A block house was built on what is now the J. J. Reed farm.  His spring as well as the Fockler cemetery being inside the stockade.  Among those who helped to chop and place the timber were Captain John Sabastian Shoup, Frederick Sheckler, Philip Stoner, Martin Stoler, Lewis Fluck, Robert Friggs, Frederick Heater, Issac Keith, Peter Crum and Joshua (known as "Scout") Davis.  There were no doubt many others, but for our purpose the above will suffice.  They pushed out into the beautiful valleys and many farms had been improved by the spring of 1780. Basil Foster built a cabin on what is now the Rhoades farm, and John Foster built a cabin near where the Shimer stone house stands in Woodcock valley.

But, alas! All this was changed. During May and June, 1780, the Indians had been killing the settlers farther west, and on Saturday, July 15th, two bands of Indians came down the Kittaning war path, and killed several settlers on the other side of the river.  Everything was excitement.  The stock had been driven to the fort some days before.   A meeting was held at once and it was decided to vacate the fort, which was done, and the next Sunday, July 16, 1780, occurred the terrible Woodcock valley massacre, which would have been the fate of the three Foster families had they remained in the settlement.  In that band of settlers who crossed the mountains that hot July night were Richard Lewis Foster and Charity Johnston, both aged ten years, who afterwards became the parents of our branch of the Foster family now numbering over one thousand two hundred souls.

Of the history of the Foster family from July 16, 1780, to April 10, 1787, we know little. Richard died fighting for his country.  Basil Foster's first wife, whose maiden name was Priscilla Lewis, had died and he had married a sister of the Penn boys, Richard and Benjamin.  In 1786 large grants of land had been given to Basil Foster and Dr. Jeremiah Duvall (who was married to Sarah Penn) from the Penn estate.  This land was situated near where Minersville, Huntingdon county, and Six Mile Run, Bedford county Pa., now stand.  In April 1787, the Foster, Duvall, Penn, Chainy and several other families left Prince George's county, Md., for the old fort at the mouth of Shoup's Run.  The fort was found standing, but over run with cats that had been left there seven years before.  Turnips were gathered that year from the crop sowed in 1780, which had seeded from year to year, and the writer has seen a pot and skillet that were dug up after seven years burial.

Before beginning the history of the Foster family we shall make brief mention of a few of those old settlers who met in Shoup's fort in the spring of 1787:  Thomas Johnston died in Highland county, Ohio, 1817. Henry Shoup died on the 16th day of March, 1850, aged 84.  Dr. Jerry Duvall died Sunday evening, Feb. 12th, 1832, aged 82 years.  Martin Stoler born in Switzerland in January, 1733, his wife, Ann Mariah, born the 4th of March, 1743, both died in Woodcock valley.  He died July 23, 1810, she on May 22nd, 1821.  Frederick Sheckler, born in Germany, 1754, his wife, Mary Nomrow Sheckler born in 1755.  He died in July 1829, she in 1834.  If spaced would permit we could give dates of the deaths of almost all of them.   Thomas Johnston and wife and Frederick Sheckler were the great-great-grand parents of the writer.

We will next take up the history of the Foster family, beginning with their settling on the Broad Top mountains in 1787.

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CHAPTER TWO

We now take up the return of the three Foster brothers to Woodcock Valley, Pennsylvania.  John Foster rebuilt his cabin near Raver's Gap, where he remained until 1800, when he emigrated to Madison county, Ohio, where he became the head of the great Ohio family of Fosters.  His wife was Ann Penn. Lewis Foster, the youngest of the Foster brothers lived in Woodcock Valley from 1787 to 1800, when the Johnstone, Flenner, Chainey, Foster and several other families concluded to move west.  The Foster family had inherited land in Ross, Madison and Highland counties, Ohio.  Lewis Foster became the owner of a farm in Ross county, Ohio, where he spent a good part of his life, and while we have not the facts in connection, we have no doubt that "Preacher Lewis" as he was called emigrated to Fulton county, Illinois, and died full of honors in 1851, in his 92d year.  The bones of himself and wife (if we are correct) sleep in the Foster cemetery, near Fairview.  We will now take up the history of Basil Foster whose history we have correct, even to the fact that the pocket knife he took from Maryland to Pennsylvania in 1787 is in the possession of John Richard Foster of Altoona, Pa.  And it will compare very favorably with one made in the 20th century.

Basil Foster, oldest son of Arthur Foster, was born in Massachusetts in the year 1744.  Moved with his father to Prince George's county, Maryland, where in 1769 he married Priscilla Lewis.  To them were born one son, Richard Lewis Foster, on the 16th day of September, 1770.  After her death he married Molly or Mary Penn.  As stated before Basil Foster moved from Maryland to Woodcock Valley. Pa., in 1788, was driven back by Indians in July, 1780, returning in May, 1787, when after resting a few days at Shoup's Fort, Dr. Jeremaih Duvall, Richard Penn and Basil Foster proceeded on their way in a southeasterly direction about seven miles to where they concluded to settle.  The woman and children remained at the fort until logs were cut, clapboards split for roofs, puncheon split and hewed for floors, and the cabins built, without nails or glass.  Rough stone chimneys were built in one corner or at one end.  We have often been at the spots where the three cabins were built.  The Duvall farm is still occupied by the family, and the Molly Foster place is being farmed today.

About June 1st, 1787 housekeeping was first begun on the Broad Top Mountains, and the first seeds were planted.  The nearest store was at Baltimore, Md., and in the spring of 1788 Basil Foster and son R. L. Foster, started with one pack horse for Baltimore for tools, as Basil Foster was by trade a wagon builder, which trade he wished his son R. L. to follow.  The long trip was made in safety their food being procured by their firearms.  The old flint locks answered the double purpose of killing the game and making the fire to cook it.

While in the south arrangements were made for Richard L., to return south in the autumn of 1789 to stay five years to learn the blacksmith trade. He left for Baltimore in September, 1789.  Little thinking that he would never see the dear old father in life again.  The winter of '89 and '90 was a terrible one.  We are told that snow laid on the mountains from late November '89 to late April '90.  Maple sugar and meat were plenty but not an ounce of flour was to be found in the three settlements - Shoups, Broad Top and the Penn-Bryant at what is now Minerville, Pa.  But the long looked for spring of 1790 came at last and with it many settlers.  The first white persons death occurred in May of this year, being that of Mrs. Sarah Shreeves.  Basil Foster cut a great chestnut tree, split, hewed and pinned it together with locust pins - the first coffin made in the settlement.  Dr. Jeremiah Duvall preached the funeral sermon and the Duvall cemetery was started, where sleep seven generations of the Foster family today.  In October, 1791, Basil Foster was taken ill and all the simple methods of the family and kind neighbors were of no avail and Basil Foster was called to his fathers, leaving a widow and seven children in the mountain wilderness, besides the son Richard.  The latter was now called to give up his trade and come back north to do a father's part by the half brothers and sisters, which he did for two years, clearing acre after acre of the woods land and working it bringing forth rye, wheat and corn.  In the year 1793, Richard L. Foster laid out what is still known as the old Dick Foster place.  He built a log cabin and log barn and one beautiful summer morning in 1793 he hied (hurried - ELM) himself over the mountains to the old fort on the banks of the blue Juniata where Bishop Asbury, first American Methodist bishop, said the words that made Richard L. Foster and Charity Johnstone man and wife.  That night they mounted the same horse and went over the mountains to their new home, where they spent the next fifty years.  As this is the particular Foster family we expect to follow for one hundred and ten years, it will be much easier if we dispose of the half brothers and sisters.

Children of Basil Foster and Mary Penn:  Basil Foster married Charity Jackson, John Foster married Elizabeth Keys, Mary Foster married Edward Zink, Sarah Foster married Lewis Chaney, Benjamin Penn married Hannah Sheckler, Elizabeth Foster married Samuel Chaney, Thomas was never married.  We shall make but brief mention of the above family.

Mary or aunt Mollie Foster, as she was called, moved with her son Thomas to Highland county, Ohio, in 1819 and died there in 1825.  Her son John was the first child born in what is now Broad Top township, Bedford county, Pa., in 1787. He grew to manhood on the mountain, was a soldier in the war of 1812, moved to Ohio in 1814, married Elizabeth Keys, in 1815. Six children were born to them: - Dewitt Clinton, Caroline who married John Cowman, Newton Penn, Amanda, Emma and Israel. All of whom were born in Highland county, Ohio.

John Foster went back to Pennsylvania for a brief visit about 1830 took sick and died and sleeps beside his father in the Duvall cemetery.

Basil Foster was born at Hyattsville, Md., 1785, moved to Hillsborough, Ohio, in May, 1819.  Two years later he married Charity Jackson.  There were born to them eight children: John, married Ruth Powers; Lewis, married Jane Chaney; Mary, married David Hite; Arthur Pleasant, married Mary Horton; Stephen Flenner, married a Miss McVickers; Phoeba, unknown; Sarah, married John Dillon; Jackson, unknown. Basil moved to Grant county, Ind., about 1840, where he and his wife lived to a ripe old age.  But two of the children are living.

Crooked footed Thomas Foster was never married.  He taught singing school in Clinton and Highland counties, Ohio.  He dropped dead while consulting a doctor in Hillsborough, Ohio, in 1840, aged 49 years.

Benjamin Penn Foster married Hannah Sheckler, daughter of Frederick and Catherine Sheckler, in 1812.  To them were born ten children: Sarah, married John Reed; Mary, married Jacob Oppenheimer;  Catherine, married James Swadley; David, married Sarah Ann Elder;  Barbara, married Mr. Warfield;  Nancy, unknown; John, never married;  Rose Ann, married Abel Osborn;  Eli, married Maria Berkstresser; Hanna, married Levi Putt.  Those children were born from 1813 to 1829.  "Happy Ben," as he was called, always took things in a happy go easy way.  The first years of his married life were spent in the loft of a still house, where several of his children were born.  About 1823 he bought a small place near Saxton, Pa., where the rest of his children were born.  (The writer occupied this house from September 1879 to 1883) Mrs. Foster died at this place about 1850 and Benjamin moved over the mountains to Clarion county, where he married again.  Three children were born to them, Arthur, Allen and Rebecca.  The wife dying he drifted west dying in March, 1860, on the farm now occupied by A. J. Swadley north of Rapatee.  His bones rest in the Lyons cemetery, south of Rapatee.  None of the family of Benjamin Foster are living.  Sarah Reed died at Stonerstown about ten years since;  Mary Oppenheimer died at Shenandoah, Iowa, January, 1893;  "Kittie" Swadley born Dec. 25, 1813, died, near Rapatee, March 8, 1878; Barbara at Bellwood, Pa.;  John Foster was born in September, 1819, died at Rapatee Jan. 31, 1893; Rose Ann Osborn at Shelby, Iowa, Jan. 19, 1893;  Eli at Chicago in November, 1890, where he was lecturer at the Libby prison exhibition for some two years; Hannah Putt at Saxton, Pa., about 1871;  of the deaths of David and Nancy we have no facts.  David has three children buried in St. Luke's cemetery near Saxton, Pa.:  The tombstone inscriptions read Francis R., born March 6, 1846, died March 8, 1848;  John A., born March 27, 1847, died April 14, 1850;  Adaline, born March 27, 1849, died April 21, 1851.  A. J. Swadley of Rapatee, Ill., has two notes that were given by David Foster to his brother, one dated Sept. 1, 1855, the other in September 1857, which shows that he was living at that time.

David and his father owned an interest in some coal land in the Broad Top coal regions, which was sold to James Entriken in 1854, as the Bedford county records show.

No one in our family has had a more eventful career that Captain Eli Foster.  He grew up at Saxton, Pa., and married Mariah Berkstresser, daughter of David and Mary Stoler Berkstressor.  After her death in the east he enlisted in the regular army of the United States and was quartered near Boston, Mass., at the breaking out of the Mexican war in which he took part from beginning to end.  After the close of his five year enlistment he visited the middle and central western states, finally settling in Ohio, where in 1861 he raised a company of which he was made captain; was one of five who helped Major Hamilton plan and execute the Libby prison tunnel and escaped through it.  He visited Rapatee in 1889.  He was married twice but left no children by either marriage.  With this we will bid adieu to the Penn branch of the Foster family and take up the Johnstone branch.  

 

CHAPTER THREE

RICHARD LEWIS FOSTER

 

As before stated, R. L. Foster was born in Prince George's county, Maryland, September 16, 1770.  His wife, Charity Johnstone, was born on an adjoining farm on March 27, 1769.  She was the daughter of Rev. Thomas Johnstone and with her brother Joshua were playmates of little Dick as he was then called.  When in 1778 the two families started on their journey to the Pennsylvania settlement, Joshua Johnstone was 11, Charity 9, and little Dick but 8 and a half years old, and they took turns walking and riding on the pack horses.

The two families settled close together on the banks of the Juniata river.  In 1779 all the children of eight years old and upwards were put to clearing of the brush between Shoup's fort and the river.  They were placed in charge of Henry Shoup, who was born in February, 1767, died March 16, 1850, hence at this time he was twelve years old.  The removal of the brush was so that the Indians could not surprise them from the river.  The next summer proved the wisdom of this work. As before referred to the Fort was abandoned on July 16, 1780 and the long trip was made back to Maryland where Richard Foster and Charity Johnstone again spent seven years together.  On their return to that Fort in 1787, he was 17 and a half and she was 18 and at that early date they plighted their troth.  But they had thought to delay the marriage until Foster had completed his trade.  But the death of his father in October, 1791, put an end to the trade business, yet was the means of delaying the marriage for two years or until the summer of 1793.

We will now leave the happy couple in their log cabin on the top of Broad Top mountains, while we mention a few historical facts concerning the early life of Richard L. Foster.  His grandfather, Arthur Foster, was an extensive slave owner but in 1777 he freed his black servants and at least three of these ex-slaves accompanied the Foster and Duvall families from Maryland to Pennsylvania in 1787.  The first cold winter of 87 and 88 was too much for one old darkey named Basil Berry and he died with some lung trouble.  Richard hewed him a coffin and he was buried near the gate of Duvall cemetery.  In 1792 he made a coffin for a half sister.  In 1795 he helped to build the Moune or Thornhill grist mill which stood on the south side of Six Mile Run, opposite to where the Baptist and M. E. churches now stand in Coaldale borough.

We wish to mention one more of those old slaves, Mingo.  He was born about 1715 on the southwestern coast of Africa, near the gulf of Guinea and claimed to be the son of a king.  He was kidnapped in the year 1735, became the property of Dr. Jeremiah Duvall, who traded a steer to a man named Jacob Ryan for him.  He afterwards became the property of the Foster family who brought him to Pennsylvania and in 1793 Richard Foster gave him a piece of land for life.  The Foster, Duvall and Fenner families built him a cabin and furnished him with what he needed.  In 1814, after performing many voodoo ceremonies he laid down and died. Mingo spring and Mingo field are but a short distance from where Mrs. Benjamin Whited now lives on Broad Top, Pa.

In 1895 (1795 - ELM) Richard Foster was made class leader in the early Methodist church of the settlement which position he held for many years.  In July 1818, Richard L. Lewis, Amos Evans who was in his 62d year, William Anderson, sr., who was in his 53rd year, and Dr. Jerry Duvall, who was in his 68th year, decided to build the first school house in what is now a territory twenty miles long and ten miles wide.  It was called the Hog Pen. It stood on the banks of Horton Run where the road leading from Coaldale to Saxton crosses.  In 1869 some of the logs were still standing and in 1878 the writer helped to haul the old chimney to the creek where it was used to weigh a log pier for a bridge.  All four of our grand parents attended school in the old pen, which did not contain a nail or a pane of glass.  We could give many interesting facts in the life of Richard L. Foster and wife did space permit.  But we must return to our subject.

After 72 years of companionship and about 50 years of happy wedded life the good mother, Charity, died on the 22d day of  October, 1843, aged 73 years, 7 months and 6 days.  Richard the husband lived ten years dying November 30, 1852 aged 83 years, 2 months and 14 days.  This grand old couple sleep side by side in the Duvall cemetery, their graves nicely marked.  They were the parent of ten children born as follows:  Wealthy A., born April 8, 1794, married Septimus Horton;  Sarah, born Sep. 26, 1795, married Thomas I. Horton; Ephraim, born Jan. 12, 1797, married Elizabeth Anderson;  Eli, born 1799, married Catherine Steele, 2nd wife Mrs. Claypool; Richard, born Aug. 29, 1801, married Nancy Shreeves;  Lewis, born Feb. 9, 1803, married Susan Barnett; Thomas, born Sep. 30, 1805, married Eliza Foster; Ruth, born July 10, 1808, married John Negley;  Josiah, born March 28, 1810, married Mary Wright; Septimus, born Oct. 2, 1813, married Elizabeth Cook, 2nd wife Elizabeth Stevens, who is the one living of the above named twenty-two persons.  This was one of the most remarkable families we ever met.  All were married young.  All raised large families. They were born in a period of 19 years, died in a period of 25 years.  When death first entered the family the oldest was 80 years old, the youngest 57.   All but two passed their four score years.  Their combined ages at death would make over 850 years.  Eight of them resided in Highland county, Ohio, at some period of their lives.  Nine of them have visited Knox county, Illinois.

In politics R. L. Foster was a democrat.   He voted for 21 governors of Pennsylvania, for fifteen under the old constitution and six under the constitution of 1838.  He was intimate with six generations of his family, from his grandfather Arthur to his great grand-son Ephriam A. Foster, now of Central City, Ky.  In 1833, he had over 12,000 fence rails burned in the great fire of that year.  And while he was 63 years at that time he ran one and a half miles in twelve minutes to save a neighbor's house.

   

WEALTHY AND SARAH FOSTER

  We will now take up the children of R. L. Foster, or fourth generation of the family as we knew them.  Wealthy Foster married Septimus Horton about 1817.  Three children were born to them in Pennsylvania. In 1822, there was a great boom concerning Highland Co., Ohio, and the Horton family with their three little children, who were named David Foster, Allen and Mary, moved to Ohio.  The rest of the children were born there, viz: Levi, Alfred, Charles W., Cary T., and Foster Septimus.  The record in 1880 read: David married Adelia Rodgers;  Allen married Margaret Zink; Mary married Pleasant Foster;  Levi married Rosetta Stibb; Cary T. married Cyntha Fenner;  Foster S. married Harriet Morehead;  Alfred and Charles W. died unmarried.  The father died about the time that Foster S. was born and the struggle for a living was somewhat hard on the mother but she showed the true grit.  She finally moved to Buda, Illinois where she died in the year 1879.

Of several members of this family we have very pleasant recollections.  David F. visited us in our Pennsylvania home in 1880.  Cary T. Foster and Allen have visited us in Knox Co., Ill.  All are now dead but Dr. Cary T. Horton, who we believe lives at Austin, Texas.

Sarah Foster married Thomas I. Horton and they resided on the Broad Top mountains for some thirty-five years after their marriage.  But moved to Buda, Bureau Co., Ill., in the spring of 1855, where they lived the rest of their days.  He died In December, 1872, she in 1885, having reached her four score and ten years.  Two years before her death, or in February, 1883, she fell on the ice and broke her leg and despite the fact that she was 88 years old it got well.  This grand old couple were the parents of eight children, viz: Charity, married David C. Fisher;  Martha married Benjamin Osborn;  Eli, married Mary Hamilton; Simon, married Eleanor Barnett;  Andrew, died unmarried at the age of 22 on Broad Top; Wealthy, married Mark Anderson;  Sarah married Matthew Hamilton;  Noah married Mary Shreeves.  To the writer's knowledge all are dead except Mrs. Anderson.  We have in our possession many interesting facts concerning these two families but must necessarily leave them out.

Chapter four will contain the history of Ephriam Foster and it will contain a genealogy of five generations and almost two hundred names.

 

CHAPTER FOUR

EPHRIAM FOSTER  

If we were to give our entire space to a history of this man, and his generations, it would not be difficult, but to confine the facts to one chapter will be quite a task, as there are children named Ritchey residing in Rays Cove, Bedford county, Pa., who are of the sixth generation, with the old gentleman.  Ephriam Foster was born Jan. 12th, 1797, near where the town of Coaldale, Pa., now stands, and where two great-great-grand-children reside in the persona of Vera L. and Margaret J. Barton.  In 1807, when "Eph" as he was called, was 10 years old the Broad Top settlement underwent a salt famine for some time.  Its weight and the long distance it had to be packed made it a very valuable article, and for some weeks that year the settlers were in sore straits for salt.  A drayman will deliver you a barrel of salt as cheap as a barrel of sand in any large Illinois city today, so that it is hard to realize what a salt famine meant to our fore fathers.  "Eph" Foster was a great hunter.  At the age of 10 years he killed his first deer. He killed a great many dear in his time but in the autumn of 1819 one came near killing him.  The incident occurred on the mountain just north of where Riddlesburg, Pa., now stands.  He shot a spike buck, when it attacked him.  He grabbed it by the horns, holding fast for several hours, then clubbed it to death with his flint lock rife.  He told the writer the story in 1866, claiming that his buckskin breeches saved his life.

He was a mill-wright and did a great many jobs in Bedford and Fulton counties during the early half of the last century. We relate one brief fact in this line to show his genius and wonderful strength.  In 1836 the writer's great grandfather, James Figard, sr., built a grist mill on Six Mile Run where Defiance, Pa. now stands.  While Mr. Figard was away hunting a dozen men to put the main shaft in the mill, "Eph" Foster with the help of a 16 year old boy took it through a window and put it in place ready for the irons.

He married Elizabeth Anderson, daughter of William Anderson and Elizabeth Willet, who was born Nov. 20th, 1792. This was the first marriage between those two old families that played such a remarkable part in Broad Top history.  The families were similar in many respects.  The Anderson family had 11 children, one pair of twins included, born in 19 years and 5 months to the day.  The Foster family of 10 were born in 19 years and 5 months and 24 days.  All lived to be grand parents and 18 of them to be great grand parents.

Two children, William and Jemima, were born to E. Foster and wife on Broad Top.  But in 1822 they loaded their household goods on wagons and started for Ohio, landing at Hillsborough.  But he did not like the country and returned to Bedford county, Pa., and bought the Moyer farm where Kearney, Pa., now stands, living there until 1859 when he moved to Everette, Pa., where he resided until 1876, when he and his wife being too old to run a farm, they sold out and moved to the Broadstone farm in Wells Valley, Fulton county, Pa., where they resided with their grand son J. C. Foster, until their deaths.

We forgot to state that almost 50 years ago Ephriam Foster made the second trip to the west, visiting Gundy, Bureau, Fulton and Knox counties, Illinois.  He purchased a farm just south of Rapatee where Marion Hart now lives, where he placed his son, Richard L. Foster, jr.

In politics Mr. Foster was a democrat, while his son R. L. was a stalwart republican.  Ephriam Foster held several important township officies.  He settled up the estate of his father the late Richard L. Foster, sr. in 1854 and 1855.  He was very firm in his ways and did not change his plans very often.

Ephriam Foster died May 14th, 1877, aged 80 years, 4 months and 12 days.  Elizabeth Foster died May 18th, 1878, aged 85 years, 5 months and 28 days.  Both sleep in the Duvall cemetery on Broad Top.  Eight children were born to this old couple, viz:  William, married Margaret Cook;  Jemima, married Joseph Negley;  Eliza, married George R. Oaks; Charity, married first, Samuel Hoover, second husband Benjamin P. Duvall;  Richard Lewis, married Ruann Osborn; Johnston J., married Julia Ann Horton;  Martha A., married first John Cook, second George Hamilton;  Priscilla, married James A. Horton.

William Foster had quite an experience in the way of coal prospector. After beginning in such work on the Broad Top mountains, he was sent to Venango county, Pa., in 1865 and 66, where he superintended large enterprises.  In 1868 he was elected road supervisor, was re-elected in 69 and 70 and while in office built the great wagon road between Riddlesburg and Hopewell on the east side of the Juniata river.  For several years he was general manager at Robbertsdale, Pa., opening four coal banks and building an entire town while in charge.  He was superintendent at Tipton, Blair county, pa., and in Clearfield county also.  Served three years as poor director of Bedford county. And while he has passed his four score years he enjoys considerable of this life yet.  His good wife who has lived with him for almost three score years if the last member of the old Cook family. They were the parents of seven children:

Joseph was born Jan. 22d, 1845, was killed by being caught [in a] horse power cider mill Sept. 21st, 1854, aged 9 years, 7 months and 29 days.

Ephriam A., married Rose Ready, Feb. 8th, 1868;  and they have been the parents of five children, viz:  Jennie, born Dec. 13th, 1869;  W. F., born Sept. 10th, 1871;  Maggie, born Feb. 23d, 1876, died Aug. 18th, 1877;  Roy R. was born Aug. 14th, 1879;  Georgie Lorrain was born Feb. 21st, 1890.  Their present home is at Central City, Ky., where Mr. Foster has large interest.

J. C. Foster, third son, married Mary A. Miller.  They have had five children. Maud E., married J. A. Repper.  They have four children, Don C., William M., Teddy and baby.

C. C. died March 30th, 1896, aged 17 years, 4 months and 3 days.

Cook, Samuel A. and Della E. are single.

J. C. Foster and family reside in Wells, Fulton county, Pa., and are farmers.

C. C. Foster, fourth son of William Foster, was married to Lucretia College.  Their children are as follows:  Emily Elizabeth;  John Calvin;  Annie Oakison;  Gustof Carl;  Margaret Mira and Nina, who died at the age of 3 months and 21 days.  Emily E. married Wilbert E. Barton and their two little girls Vera L. and Margaret J. are the eight generation of the Foster family as we have record.

The two daughters of William: Elizabeth, married Clarence Farber and Mira married Theodore Williams.

E. A. Foster has reached the top as a practical manager of coal and iron works.  Has been in Alabama and Kentucky for several years.  He has charge of the Rock Hill coal mines at Robbertsdale, Pa., as manager of the loading and shipping department for several years.  And it is said of him he never betrayed a trust.

Jemima Foster married Joseph Negley.  They kept house for several years near Longs Run.  (The writer was born in the Joseph Negley house.)  But about 1855 Ephriam Foster purchased a large farm in Rays Cove, where the Negley family lived for over thirty years.  Here the father died when a middle aged man and that dread disease, consumption, carried off grown daughter after grown daughter in a few years time.  We remember Lizzie, Maggie, Charity, Annie, Minerva and Alice all died, we believe, but two, who are spared to the aged mother today.  Joseph Negley, jr., married Sarah B. Young and lives at Coaldale, Pa.

Eliza Oaks died several years since, leaving several children.

Charity Fosters' first husband died a few years after their marriage, leaving three children, John F., Theophilus and Priscilla.  The two latter are dead. She then married Behjamin P. Duval, to them were born three children, William, Amos and Lizzie.  She died with consumption some thirty years since.

R. L. Foster and Ruann Osborn were the parents of eleven children:  Humphrey Lewis married Sydnia A. Kline; Rose Ann married Samuel Heavilin;  Walter married Clara B. Davis, second wife Mrs. Green; Watson married Mary Palmer; Emanuel married Viola M. Holloway;  Luther married Flora Miller; Lida married J. C. Anderson;  Emeline died in childhood;  Druzilla died at 4 years;  Matilda died at 10 years;  William D. died at 23 years.

R. L. Foster moved from Illinois to Arkansas where his first wife died and he married Mrs. Ester Allen.  No children were born to them.  He died at VanBuren, Ark., in 1879.

H. L. Foster and wife had three children: May married a Mr. Kesler at Boquet, Pa.; Blanch and Ira M. are single.

Rose Ann Heavilin has five children: Mary, Lottie, Pearl, Minnie and Moss.

Walter, two children by first wife:  Cora married Dr. Sherman;  Elsie married Fay Hitchcock.  They live at Maquon, Ill.

Watson, five children:  Manuel, Lemuel, Pitt, Issac and Bert. Manuel died a few years since, home Kewanee, Ill.

Emanuel has two children Earl and Lola. Maquon, Ill.

Luther one child, Maude.

Lida Anderson has three children:  Cassie, Minnie and Norman. Home, Minneapolis, Kan.

The family of R. L. Foster is scattered from Pennsylvania to Kansas.  Besides the four names above:  Humphrey L. or "Booky" as he was called, died in the asylum at Jacksonville, Ill., on April 27, 1888, aged 42 years.  Richard Lewis Foster and son Humphrey Lewis both served in Co. D. 103 Reg. Ill. Vol. H. L., sleeps in the Lyons cemetery in Fulton county, Ill.

Johnston J. Foster and wife were the parents of one son, James Wilson.  Johnston died while yet a young man at Hopewell, Pa., over forty years since, and his wife only survived him a few months.  We are told by those who knew them that both were splendid people.  Of the son we have not been able to get much information.   His first wife was Kate Fry.  Two girls were born to them about 1873 to 1875.  One was named Druzilla Viola. He married a Miss Pedigrew in 1876.  She was burned to death at Kittaning,  Pa., in 1880, leaving two children.  One was named Johnston.  He afterwards married a Miss Pedigrew.

Martha Ann Foster and John Cook were the parents of two children:  John P., died Sept. 14th, 1873, aged 1 year, 4 months and 5 days.  Minerva J., died July 10th, 1879, aged 24 years 7 months and 20 days.  The father John Cook, who was a son of Miles Cook and Mary Fisher, died Oct. 1st, 1873, aged 40 years, 6 months and 19 days.  He sleep with his parents and children in the Lyons cemetery.  Mrs. Cook afterwards married George Hamilton, and lives at Prairie City, Ill.

Priscilla Foster and James Horton were the parents of five boys:  George A. died with lung trouble in 1877, aged 20 years.  Joseph W., John C., Charles and Harry all living. The mother died about 26 years since.

Thus we see that there are three of the children of Ephriam Foster and Elizabeth Anderson living. William, Jemima and Martha A.  Yet if the parents were living today they would be in their 106th and 110th years.  The writer has very kind memories of the dear old mother thirty odd years ago.  William Foster and Mrs. Jemima Negley are both great, great, grandparents and reside in their native township and county on Broad Top.

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NOTE TO CHAPTER FOUR

After chapter four was in press we received some delayed data, which must have a place in our history.

Children of Jemima Foster and Joseph Negley, sr.:  Lucinda, married Jacob Ritchey.  She is living in Rays Coves, Pa. Then follows Andrew, Jacob, Martha J., Esther, Margaret, Lizzie, Jemima, Charity, Annie, Priscilla, Mary Alice, and Sarah E. all dead.  Joseph W. H. Negley is living.  He married Sarah Belle, daughter of David and Hannah Evans Young and lives at Six Mile Run, Pa, Pa.  Margaret, Lizzie, Jemima and Charity, as well as the father, all died in about twelve months time, with that dread disease, consumption.  Three of the daughters were married:  Charity married Washington Hall.  Priscilla married Alex Manspeaker, and Sarah E. married Adam P. Bottomfield.   The writer remembers several of the above named as very beautiful young girls, before stricken.  

CHAPTER FIVE

  ELI FOSTER

Eli Foster, second son of R. L. Foster, was born July 10, 1799, one hundred and three years to the day on which we write this chapter. He was the fourth child born to this old Broad Top family and his childhood and early manhood were spent like the other children, but in two particulars. He choose differently. He did not become a farmer until an old man, and he selected a wife outside of the old Broad Top families. At the age of eighteen he was considered a splendid mechanic and had made several coffins. Prior to that time he left the mountains and went down into the river settlement to work, where he met and married Cathrine Steel in 1827, when about eighteen years of age. He built a house in Stonertown, Pa., near where Philip Stoner built a cabin in 1778. Foster's house is still standing and is owned by the Neary family in 1902. Here four of Eli Foster's children were born. Reuben R., born Jan. 5th. 1828, died in Goble, Oregon, June 14, 1900; Cyrus, born Oct. 25, 1829, died May 20, 1881, in Oregon; Lucinda, born Oct. 31, 1831, died June 23, 1876; Levi C., born Sept. 23, 1833 is living in Missouri.

Eli moved to Hopewell in 1834, where he worked for the old Hopewell furnace and forge at carpenter work. We have been told wonderful stories of his feats of strength, and that he used it on his fellow man when imposed on, we have no doubt, as he was known as the best man among the employees. Two children were born to them at Hopewell: Alford T., born march 8, 1836, died 1856: Allen Horton, born April 8th, 1838, died Jan. 30th, 1901, at Mazon, Illinois.

In June 1839, Eli Foster and family moved from Bedford county, Pa., to Highland county, Ohio, where three more children were born to them: George F., born July 23d, 1840, lives at Goble, Oregon; Minerva, Aug. 23d, 1842; Sarah E., July 5th, 1844.

This year Eli and family moved to Wauponsee, Grundy county, Illinois, where his wife died and he married Mary Claypool, Aug. 21st, 1849. Two children were born to them: Julinia, born 1853, died Oct. 8th, 1854; Cathrine, born Jan. 29th, 1854; Eli Foster died at this place Jan. 23d, 1874, aged 74 years, 6 months and 13 days, the first death in the family of ten children and the youngest of all at the time of death. The ages of the others at time of death were 86, 90, 80, 81, 87, 85, 81, 87 and 87.

Cyrus Foster married Elizabeth Alexandria and moved to Goble, Columbia county, Oregon. Six children were born to them: Rebecca, Cathrine, Frank, Charles, Eli and Rueben. Cyrus died at the age of 51 years, 6 months and 25 days, and Rueben married his widow. They had no children and Rueben died Jan. 14th, 1900, aged 72 years, 5 months and 9 days (Note: this would be Rueben R., brother of Cyrus, - date of death is given as June 14, 1900 in first paragraph of this chapter - ELM).

Lucinda Foster married Morgan Button. They had nine children: Eli, Oliver, Minerva, Cary, George, Milton, Addison, Grant and Luella. Lucinda died June 23d, 1876, aged 44 years, 7 months and 23 days. Levi C., married Matilda Piatt. They have been the parents of five children: Horton, Martha, Dora, Eva and Leroy. Their present home is at Merwin, Missouri.

Allen Horton married Harriet Fuller. They had seven children: Cora May, Grace, Blanche, Pina, Daisy, Hattie, and Roy Allen. Allen H. Foster was a splendid man. He visited the writer's family in Pennsylvania when we were a boy, and he visited us at Rapatee some ten years since. He died Jan. 30th, 1901, at Mazon, Grundy county, Ill., aged 62 years, 9 months and 22 days. The wife survives him and the family reside at Mazon, Illinois.

George F., married Eliza Teeters. They have four children: George, Rueben, Mable, and Jennie. They reside at Goble, Columbia county, Oregon. Sarah E. Foster married Gideon Ryder. They had four children: Hettie, Cody, Rubbie and Judge. They live in Grundy county, Ill. Cathrine Foster married William Johnson. They live in Iowa and have five children:  Charles, Minnie, Ernest, Jennie and Roy. The writer is sorry this record is so incomplete.

 

CHAPTER SIX

  RICHARD FOSTER

 

Richard Foster, third son of Richard L. Foster and Charity Johnston, was born August 29, 1801. His wife, Nancy Shreeves, youngest daughter of Barton and Nellie Gordon Shreeves, was born April 8, 1805. They were born about one and one-half miles apart, he on the old Foster farm north of Six Mile Run, she on the "Barton" place south of the Run. The parents of both of them were prominent in the early church history of the place. And we can readily suppose in social matters as well.

Neither ever saw the inside of a school house during their childhood days. "Uncle Dick" at the age of seventeen, helped to build the first school house on Broad Top the "Hog Pen" in 1818.

By 1820 Broad Top township had become quite well settled or at least the stone bound hills along Six Mile Run had been looked over, and the best spots for cultivation picked out. Hence Uncle Dick had not located at the time of his marriage to Nancy Shreeves, which occurred in the year 1821. And in the summer of 1822, Ephriam Foster and family, Richard Foster and wife, Septimus Horton and wife (who was a sister to the Foster boys) with their three little children, Thomas Foster, Edward Chainey, Stephen Fenner and several others left Hopewell, Bedford Co., Pa., for Highland Co., Ohio. Our grandfather, Thomas Foster, carried a gun and walked the entire distance with the band of settlers. He was less than eighteen years of age yet furnished his share of the meat that was shot wild in the woods day by day. And during our boyhood days, we always enjoyed grandfather's stories of the trip. Uncle Dick lived in Highland Co., Ohio, for twenty-seven years but in the autumn of 1849 he came to Fulton Co. Ill., and spent the first winter near where John Swigert now lives in Fairview township. He rented the next year, but in 1851 he settled on the farm where he lived to the end of his live. It is now owned by R. P. Foster.

About ten years after they came to Illinois on March 12, 1859 Nancy Foster died, aged 53 years, 11 months and 4 days. Her's was a lovely character, and she was respected by all who knew her. The father lived until nine o'clock p. m., Wednesday, August 29, 1988, just 87 years from the time he first saw the day light on the top of the beautiful Broad Top hills. The three oldest and three youngest of the children were standing by his bed when he breathed his last. A large crowd of friends followed the remains of this pioneer who had helped to settle three states, to his last resting place in the Lyons cemetery where he laid beside his wife, and where five generations of the Foster family sleep, viz.: Benjamin Foster, Richard Foster, Richard Lewis Foster, Humphrey Lewis Foster and William Chester Foster.

Richard Foster and Nancy Shreeves were the parents of ten children born as follows in Highland Co., Ohio.

      Manuel, born May 4th, 1823, married Sarah Shockly.

      Lemuel, born Nov. 30th, 1824, Date of death unknown.

      Sylvester, born July 23rd, 1826, married Mary Dewitt.

      Elvira, born July 23rd, 1828, married James Brown.

      Wealthy, born July 24th, 1830. 1st husband, Albert H. Apgar; second husband, Issac Kinsey.

      James Madison, born Oct. 25th, 1833, married Fannie Kay.

      Charity, born Jan. 3d, 1836, married Joseph Wadsworth.

      Ascenath, born Sept. 16th, 1840. Has never been married.

      Richard Polk, born June22, 1842, married Amanda E. Plummer.

      Mary Samantha, born May 14, 1844, married John Slater.

Nine of the above named sons and daughters, are yet living, and we will make mention of them, beginning with Manuel who is now in his 80th year.

Manuel Foster, oldest son of Richard Foster, married Sarah Shockley in Highland Co., Ohio, Aug. 23d, 1847. She was born Aug. (noted in the margin: "May" - ELM) 7, 1829. Over 42 years ago he came from Ohio to the vicinity of Rapatee, living on three different farms in that neighborhood.

About 1866 he moved to Lucas Co., Iowa, where he has resided since and where his wife and mother died. They were the parents of eleven children.

Wellar, John Worth, Rebecca, Wayne, Nancy, (noted in the margin: "Delphie, dead, Lyons cemetery" - ELM) Douglas, Stella, Charles E., Franklin, Manual S., and Eva.

Wellar Foster married Hannah Barnett. They have nine children.

Armina married Chris Schlueter. They have one child.

Elbert Polk, Hillner W., Alma F., Aubrey, Orville, Harlan, Walker and Lawrence. Harlan died in childhood. The others are single.

John Worth Foster married Rachel Best. They have been the parents of twelve children. John B., single. Sadie, married Edward Gurwell. They have three children, Manual, dead, Loyed and Noel, living (noted in margin: "Willa, Louise, John K M, & Jas. E." - ELM).

Manual Albert, dead.

James B. married Ethel Donor. They have one child named Dale (noted in the margin: "and Beatrice" -ELM).

Maude, Vance, Grace, Nettie, Frank, Leo, Bertha and Mary all single.

Rebecca Foster married John R. Johnston. They have eight children.

Belle married Rev. Carl Brown. They have two children, Fletcher and Florence (noted in the margin: "Frances and Ruth" - ELM).

James F., Lida R., Matthew P., Charles M., Florence, Bernice and Nora, all single.

Wayne Foster married Frances Barnett. They have twelve children. Gilbert O., married Bertha Neptune.

Charles W. married Carrie King. Bernice to Harlan Victor, Bessie M., to Ernest Dora (noted in the margin: "two children, Leta & Inez" - ELM).

Roy B., Thirstain M., Alma, Viola, Leslie, Harlan, Iva and Ila, the last two being twins, are all single (noted in the margin: "and Lola" - ELM).

Nancy Foster married George Brown.

Douglas Foster married Lavina Holmes. They have four children living: Guy, Roscoe, Candace and Clyde M. Cletee M., dead. The last two were twins.

Steila Foster is single and keeps house for her father who is almost blind at his home near Chariton, Iowa.

Charles E. Foster married Clara Brennamin. They have had eight children: Bessie E., Mamie B., Fern, Ruth, Elmer M., Sarah, Don and Chalmer E. Sarah is dead the others are all single.

Franklin Foster married Myrtle Parry, they have one child, Watie (noted in the margin: "Miles & Gerald" - ELM).

Manual S. married Ovoca Buzzard they have two children, Glenn and Sarah Cleo (noted in the margin: "Blanche, Carl & Wilma" - ELM).

Eva Foster is single.

Manuel Foster has always obeyed the Golden Rule hence has made many friends wherever he has lived from Ohio to Iowa, and today can gather about one hundred of his own family around him.

August 23d, 1897 he and his wife celebrated the 50th anniversary of their marriage at their home in Lucas County, Iowa. Besides his own family most of his brothers and sisters were present. The good wife died September 11th, 1901, aged 72 years, 4 months and 4 days.

Sylvester Foster has no doubt had more splice and variety in his own life than any other one in the family. Just as he entered manhood our war with Mexico began and he enlisted and took part in the same. He drifted to Fairview, Ill., over fifty years ago, and worked as a mechanic for some years. Married Mary Dewitt. They have been the parents of five children. One child sleeps in the Lyons cemetery. Carl died in Oneida, Ill., in April, 1887, in his 17th year. Dewitt married Olive Hennings and lives in Chicago.

Don and Madge are single. Their home is in Oneida, Ill., but Sylvester has spent his winters for several years near Alvin, Texas, where he has large interests. He followed the drug business in Oneida for several years, where he owns property.

Elvira Foster Brown lived in the vicinity of Rapatee for several years, but finally moved to Lucas county, Iowa, where the husband James Brown died a few years since. The following children are living: Charles W. Brown married Mary Kirkuff. She died and he then married Jane Johnston. They have four children two of whom are twins.

Annie Brown married Joseph Barnett.

Frank Brown single.

Thomas Brown married Cathrine Shockley.

Sophia C. Brown married John White.

Elvira Brown married Oscar Slater.

Richard Brown married Fannie Long.

James Brown, jr., married Irene McDowell.

Children of Wealthy Foster Apgar: They were the parents of six children:

Ida B., born June 4th, 1859, died Sept. 9th, 1859.

Richard F., born April 16th, 1860, died Aug. 22nd, 1860.

John W., born May 31st, 1861, died June3d, 1862.

Wilber O., born June 30th, 1862, died Sept. 12th, 1862.

Vernice married Douglas Brennamin and died several years since leaving a small family.

Manuel Albert married Linna Smith and lives near Chariton, Iowa. He is a splendid man and is the only child living (noted in the margin, "Bert, Frank, see page 57" [Additions & Corrections to Chapter Six] - ELM).

The father Albert H. Apgar died March 7th, 1864, aged 39 years, 10 months and 10 days. He and the four first named children sleep in the Lyons cemetery beneath a beautiful granite monument. Mrs. Apgar married for her second husband Issac Kinney and they reside in Lucas county, Iowa.

Children of James M. Foster and Fannie Kay:

Flora married George Brennamin.

Samantha married William Bigham.

Richard married Rachel Long.

Harry married Rachel Webb.

Their homes are in Lucas county, Iowa.

Children of Charity Foster Wadsworth:

Douglas and Walker single.

Mary married William Andrews.

Fay married.

Charles, Maud, and Frances dead.

The Wadsworths live near Wichita, Kansas.

R. P. Foster has spent almost all his life at this place. Brought here at the age of 7 years he grew to manhood here. He spent some time in the mountains in 1864 and 1865 returning to Illinois in December, 1866. He married Amanda E. daughter of Samuel and Nancy Plummer and for several years rented the Richard Foster farm, finally buying it. It is one of the finest homes in Knox county and where all his family have been born which consists of:

Albert Otis, born Sept. 4th, 1872.

Samuel Blair, born Aug. 22nd, 1874, married Mabell daughter of G. A. and Annie Swigert Taylor. They have one son Paul R., aged 4 years.

Seldon Gale, born Feb. 9th, 1876.

Norman, born March 11th, 1879, married Vesper, daughter of R. S. and Faymie Brock Taylor. No children.

Lena Ascenath, born Jan. 21st, 1882.

Mamie, born Jan. 22d, 1888.

All reside within one and a half miles of Rapatee.

Amanda E., wife of R. P. Foster after an illness of a few hours departed this life on Nov. 22d, 1890, aged 36 years, 3 months and 24 days. She was a woman with many good qualities as the writer found out in over seven years of acquaintance. She is buried in the Lyons cemetery where a beautiful granite monument marks the spot.

R. P. Foster served several years as road commissioner. Has been trustee of Rapatee Union church for over ten years and has served as school director of Clearfield district most of the time for thirty years.

Children of Mary Samantha Foster Slater (noted in the margin "buried near Newbern, IA - ELM): Paul, Clyde, Tessie and Frank all single.

Before closing the chapter we would like to make mention of Aunt Ascenath Foster. "For over twenty years she was the housekeeper for her father. As his steps became feeble with age, she grew the more kind to him, his companion and solace in his last days. After the death of Amanda E. Foster in November 1890, she took a mothers place with her children. All honor to such women.

   

CHAPTER SEVEN

LEWIS FOSTER

Lewis Foster, fourth son of R. L. Foster, was born on the old Foster farm on Broad Top, Feb. 9th, 1803, was grown to manhood on the old homestead. At a very early time in his life he took an active part in church affairs also during his entire life he was an earnest believer in the old time Whig party and from 1852 to his death was an active member in the Republican party. Our reason for noting this is the fact that the other six brothers were all life long Democrats. At the age of 20 years Lewis Foster married Susan Barnett, a member of one of the old time Broad Top families, also one of the families that has been on the best side of everything gotten up for the public good for the last hundred years. For ten years Lewis Foster lived at Hopewell, Pa. A considerable part of that time he had charge of the furnace stables. He hauled charcoal from the Sandy Run, Longs Run, Keifers and other big choppings, between 1840 and 1850. But about the middle of the last century he made up his mind that such a place as the Hopewell furnace was not the place to bring up a family. Some of his children were quite young at that time. So he took his belongings and started west finally settling in Pleasant township, Lucas county, Iowa.

He soon made himself felt in his new home. He took a very active part in church affairs, often filling the pulpit in the absence of the minister. He died on his farm Sunday, June 9th, 1889, aged 86 years and 4 months. A very large crowd of neighbors and friends followed the remains to the Foster cemetery on Monday, June 10th.

To show how the good man stood at home we copy the Chariton, Iowa, Patriot of June 14th, 1889: "In the death of this venerable man the community loses an upright citizen and the church a life long and consistent member. His exemplarly christian character gave him a commanding influence in the neighborhood where he lived so many years."

Susan, the wife, lived for several years after her good man died, when she was called home. The following children were born to Lewis Foster and Susan Barnett: Ephriam, married Elizabeth Harding, Isabelle married John W. Smith; George died in children in Pennsylvania; Soloman and Jonathan, twins, died in Pennsylvania; Sylvester, married Charlotte Swartz; John W., married Mary Dochenbach; Elizabeth married, first Asbery Duckworth, second Wesley Teeter, third John R. Cooper; Henry C., married Plantina Anderson; Eliza J., married Lemuel Barnett, second husband a Mr. White.

Ephraim, oldest son of Lewis Foster and Susan Barnett, left Bedford county, Pa. about 50 years since, went west from Hopewell, Pa., to Pittsburgh by the old stage route, then by water to Chicago, landing there when it was a hustling western village. Afterwards he came to Fairview, Fulton county, Ill., by the traveling methods of the time. Considerable of the trip was made on foot. He was a carpenter and helped to build the first M. E. church in Fairview. The following winter he went to Keokuk, Iowa, working that winter in a slaughter house. From there he moved to Fairfield, Jefferson county, Iowa, where he married Isabell Harding. In 1853 he entered 200 acres of land in Pleasant township, Lucas county Iowa, which was his home for 49 years, except two years spent temporarily in Chariton, Iowa. Ephriam Foster died Jan. 17th, 1902, from blood poison, after a brief illness. He was a mild tempered man of very simple habits and was respected by all who knew him. The wife survives him. She lives with her son Ezra. E. Foster who is postmaster, general merchant and real estate agent at Olmitz, Iowa.

Children of E. Foster and Isabell Harding: George W., married Laura Boylan, post office, Akron, Col.; John Y., married Lydia Garrett, Russell, Iowa; Cornelia I., married Oliver Fluke, Olmitz, Iowa; Henry Lynn died when 18 months old; Sarah A., married H. S. Miller and they live in Missouri; Albert A., married Mildred E. Hixon, Olmitz, Iowa; Mary S., married Nixon Weiford, Chariton, Iowa; Ezra E., unmarried.

Grandchildren of E. Foster: George W. has four children: Leslie L., Ira, Arthur and Mabel. Leslie L. was married very recently. John Y., had five children: William E., married Jessie Simmons, Clara Pearl and Charles Albert single, Jessie, Leona and Lewis dead. Cornelia I. had ten children: Loran O., Lola Pearl, Gwinnie L., Lillian Belle, Carl, Snow, Harold, Stewart Irwin and Onva. Sarah A. has five children: Hettie Millicent married Roy Burch, Cresson, Ray, Foster, Ezra and Albert all single. Albert A. has three children: Lola Fern, Walter Lee and Theodore. Mary S. one child, Charles W (noted in the margin "Weiford" - ELM).

We failed to note that Ephriam Foster once visited his native state, spending a short time there about 50 years ago.

We have written several letters to western points for information concerning the families of the daughters of Lewis Foster and Susan Barnett, but up to date have received little information. Isabelle, oldest daughter, of Lewis Foster, was born in Broad Top township, Bedford Co., almost four score years ago. She married John W. Smith. They resided at Hopewell, Pa., for several years but about the middle of the last century they settled in Lucas Co., Iowa, where their family was raised. Mr. Smith died several years since, and the widow resides on the home place.

Elizabeth, eighth child and second daughter, was born about 1834 in Pennsylvania, was taken to Iowa when a young woman, where she married Asbery Duckworth. He died at Little Rock, Arkansas, while serving his country as a soldier during the rebellion. They had four children, two boys and two girls. She then married Wesley Teeter. She married the third time, her last husband being John R. Cooper, also a soldier, and he is dead. She lives near Russell, Iowa.

Eliza Jane, third daughter and tenth child of Lewis Foster, was born June 24, 1847, married Lemuel Barnett, August 14, 1867. Two children were born to them: Susan E. born March 16, 1872; Katie, born March 11, 1883.

Susan E. married Charles Knobbs in 1888. They have two children: Della, born September 1889; Bonnie, born September 1891.

Eliza Jane Foster was married the second time to a Mr. White and they live in Colorado. Her first husband, Lemuel Barnett, lives in Kansas.

Mrs. White was taken from Pennsylvania to Iowa when a little child, and has lived in several different states.

We will now take up the history of Sylvester, J. W. and H. C. Foster, all of whom have made the world better by living in it. Two of them were soldiers in the war of the rebellion.

Dr. Sylvester Foster was the fifth son and sixth child of Lewis Foster, and was born near Hopewell, Bedford county, Pa., Sept. 2nd, 1830, and the 69 years that he was permitted to live were spent in a way that made the world better, and the great Foster family must feel proud to claim him as one of their number. His early boyhood was spent on the mountain and he grew up rugged in body and bright in mind and at the age of eighteen, in the year 1848, at old Round Knobb school house he gave his heart to God, united with the M. E. church and quite an exhorter in that early day.

We do not know just when he moved west, but about 1850. He married Charlotte Schwartz, daughter of William Schwartz and Mary Bender, who was born in Bedford county, Pa., April 29, 1837. Mrs. Foster came of good, plain, old time Pennsylvania German people. Her mother lived to July 1900, dying at the age of 82 years and 11 months.

Sylvester Foster studied medicine and became a splendid physician. He finally settled at Annelly, Kansas. He enlisted and served his country at the front during the civl war until his health failed, when he was honorably discharged. Was then appointed as corner of his county in 1872 and 73. The last fifteen years of his life he was a member of the county board of health. His death occurred July 27th, 1899, of Bright's disease of the kidneys, the complaint that has carried off most of the quite old members of the Foster family who have died within 50 years.

Sylvester leaves a wife at Annelly, Kansas, and nine children all living.

John Calvin married Eliza Jane Waer, Oct. 19th, 1884, and to them have been born five children: Cora May, Nov. 28th,

1885; then two still born that were not named; Albert Lincoln, born May 23d, 1891; Lewis Sylvester, born Jan. 9th, 1893.

John C. Foster has been honored by his township, served two terms as trustee, has served as justice of the peace and has been a member of the board of education for several years.

Emanuel Foster was married to Sadie Isabelle Carpenter, April 5th, 1883. They have one child: Flossie Fay, born Sept. 14th, 1884.

John C. and Emanuel both reside at Newton, Kansas.

Mary Amanda Foster married H. C. W. Griffith, June 5th, 1878. They have had seven children, viz:

Alice Mary, born March 16th, 1879.

Annie Elizabeth, born July 9th, 1881.

Dorothy Maud, born July 4th, 1883.

Charles Henry, Born Jan. 12th, 1886.

Walter Wandesford, born Aug. 14th, 1888.

Edward Claude, born March 23, 1890.

Charlotte S. V., Jan. 24, 1895, all living. Home Annelly, Kansas.

Frances Jane Foster married George W. Russell, March 17, 1887. Have been the parents of four children.

Harvard Foster, born Feb. 21, 1888.

Elgy Sylvester, Jan. 23, 1890.

Charlotte E., Sept. 4, 1891.

Burr, who died in infancy.

The Russells reside at Newton, Kansas.

Viola Kansas Foster was married to Carl F. Witt, April 2, 1892. Six children have been born to them: Florence Fern, Minnie Olive, Earl Chester, Kennith Sylvan, Fredrick and baby. They reside at Annelly, Kansas.

Charles Lincoln Foster, Lewis Sherman Foster and Miss Hettie Vienna Foster, all single, and reside at Annelly, Kansas. Lincoln is serving his fourth term on the township board.

Emanuel Foster has been a member of the school board for several years and is central committeeman for his township. But one grandchild has been married: Alice Mary Griffith to George L. Alexander, March 26, 1902.

John W., sixth son of Lewis Foster, was born on Broad Top, July 13, 1832, married Mary Dachenbach, daughter of John Dachenbach. She was born Sept. 27, 1837. They were married January 20, 1855. He moved to Iowa prior to the civil war, but returned to Pennsylvania in 1861. He enlisted in Company E, 195 Regiment, Pa. Volunteer Infantry. While serving in Virginia he received a sun-stroke which has to some extent disabled him ever since, and for the last five years he has been an invalid. After the war John settled in Bedford Co., Pa., but two years later he left for Lucas Co., Iowa, with his wife and four children: Anna B., William, Ella and Susan. He still resides in Russell, Iowa.  They have been the parents of fourteen children, viz: Annabelle, William H. H., and James, twins, both dead, Sarah E., dead, Susan J., Lewis G., Josie E., Effie, Mary E., Ida and  Hattie, twins, both dead, harry, dead, George B. and Harvey G.  Of the eight who are living, Annabelle married Frank Peterson. They have nine children: Arthur, Howard, Cora, Warren, Nettie, dead, Vernon, Edna, Charles and baby, dead. They reside at Bancroft, Nebraska.

Susan J. married Alfred B. Garrett. They have three children: Zella, dead, Bretina, living, and a baby dead. The husband is also dead. They reside at Columbia, Iowa.

Lewis G. married Ella Cool. They have one child dead, and two boys, Samuel and Clarence, living.

Josie E. married Joseph Shore. They have six children: Ethel Cora, Veda, Ernest, Edith and Clarence. Their home is at Bancroft, Neb.

Effie married Ed Davis, no children.

Mary E. married Charles Mullen. They have two children: Frank and Hallie.

George B., married Eliza Cooper. They have two children: Lena and Eva.

Harvey G., married Lavada Kenton, they have one child named Dennis.

It will be noticed that of twelve pair of twins mentioned in our history, not one pair lived to manhood or woman. William, twin in above family, was killed by lightning when he was just entering manhood. The other three died in early childhood..

Henry Clay Foster was born near Hopewell, Pa., Sept. 25th, 1844, accompanied his father to Iowa, where he grew to manhood. He moved to Seward county, Nebr., when it was the wild west in truth. He married Plantina Anderson and Margaret Evans, Aug. 12, 1867. They have been the parents of six children born as follows:

Lemuel, Oct. 1st, 1868, died in infancy.

Lillian, Sept. 5th, 1869, died 1880.

Susan M., Feb. 14th, 1871, married Arthur Unitt, Dec. 25, 1893, have two children - Alice, born Jan. 23, 1895 and Vera, born Oct. 14th, 1900.

Harrison E., born Dec. 25th, 1872.

Rosetta, born Nov. 12th, 1874, died 1880.

Lewis, born Sept. 23d, 1876, died 1880.

We are told that the three, Lillian, Rosetta and Lewis, died during the great scarlet fever plugue in Stewart county, Neb., in 1880.

H. C. Foster and family reside at Falls City, Neb., and are highly respected people.

Note: - We have received some very interesting matter concerning the family of Eli Foster and shall devote a chapter to those fragments later on. D. I. Foster.

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CHAPTER EIGHT

THOMAS FOSTER

 

On the 30th day of September, 1805, a fifth son was born to R. L. and Charity Foster. As a child he was not different from his brothers, but from early boyhood he seemed to inherit a religious zeal from his grandfather, Rev. Thomas Johnston, and in early manhood he gave his heart to God, and for about 50 years he observed a family altar in his home, where the evening hymn was sung and a sincere prayer was offered up to the great Creator of all.

The writer's first recollection of this grand old man was in the grain harvest of 1860. We can remember of bringing him a drink of water. Our good-bye was taken on Sunday evening, September 22,,  1883.  He then lacked eight days of being 78 years old, yet his blue eyes were as clear and his step as firm as a man of 60. That Sunday we heard him say that he had never taken the name of God in vain.

On October 1, 1829, he married Eliza Horton Foster, who was born April 2, 1813. For several years they cared for Samuel Horton, who was the grandfather of Mrs. Foster. He was born in 1752, hence he was a very old man at this time but lived for several years with this young couple.

In April 1841, Thomas Foster, with the help of his neighbors built a house on the southeast side of Round Knobb. Every piece of timber in this house was standing on the stump, eight days previous to the day they moved into it. The large family occupied this cabin until April 1st, 1855, when they moved on the adjourning farm. But about 1865 he built a substantial house on the home place. They moved back on it on April, 1866, where they resided until their deaths. That of Thomas Foster occurred June 9th, 1886, aged 80 years, 7 months and 9 days. The funeral sermons was preached by Rev. John A. Ploughman who had been intimate with the family for 41 years.

Thomas Foster served six years on the township board of education and one year, 1874, as supervisor of high ways for Broad Top township.

Eliza lived for over seven years after the death of her good man, when after an illness of less than four days she died, on November 15, 1893, aged 80 years, 7 months and 13 days. She had been a consistent Christian for 65 years. Had presided over her own house for 64 years.  Had never been over 25 miles from her birth place. At the time of her death she had been the mother of sixteen children, the grandmother of sixty-three and the great-grand mother of thirty-six. A large crowd followed her remains to Duvall cemetery. Six grand-children acted as pall bearers, viz: A. E. Foster, J. G. Foster, Harry Foster, T. L. Foster, W. G. Foster and Howard Boyles.

Sixteen children were born to Thomas and Eliza Foster, viz: Amanda died in infancy. Miles, born June 14, 1832. Ira, born July 6, 1834. Aaron, May 17, 1836. Wealthy A., March 24, 1838. Joseph E., April 14, 1840. Elizabeth died in infancy. William, born 1843. Louisa, born 1845. Thomas E., born March 24, 1847. Sarah, died in infancy. Septimus, born 1850. Lewis T., born 1852. Susan J., born March 1855. Lyman D., born 1857, died 1859. Samson P., born in 1859. At the age of 20 years or in 1852 Miles Foster, oldest son of Thomas, crossed the mountains to Clarion and Armstrong counties, Pa., where he spent three years chopping cord wood, burning charcoal and working on keelboats. Returning to Bedford county in 1855, he married Caroline Figard, daughter of Rev. William Figard and Mary Hoover Figard. They were the parents of twelve children born as follows:

David Ira, born June 7, 1856.

Joseph Wilson, born March 27, 1858.

Lemuel Christian, Aug. 18, 1860.  He died Aug. 6, 1863.

George McC., born June 6, 1863.  He died with scarlet fever, Thursday, April 24, 1872.

Eliza Ellen, born Jan. 13, 1866.

William Grant, twin, born Aug. 17, 1868.

Anna Mary, twin, born Aug. 17, 1868. She died with scarlet fever Tuesday, April 22, 1872.

Thomas Lewis, born May 21, 1871.

Elizabeth, born Sept. 30, 1873, died Aug. 31, 1878.

Hannah Margaret, born April 22, 1876, died April 21, 1878.

Charity Ann, born Feb. 22, 1878, died May 4, 1902.

Susan Jane, born Oct. 5, 1882, died Oct. 8, 1887.

Thus we see that the dear old mother has followed seven of her children to the cemetery, aged 2 years to 23 years.

This couple lived for over 40 years within two miles of where they married, in 1855.

Miles Foster died in the village of Coaldale, July 19, 1895, aged 63 years, 1 month and 5 days. The mother resides with her daughter, Mrs. Ella E. Smith, in the same town.

D. I. Foster married Rebecca  E. Ramsey, born June 28, 1858 daughter of Joseph Ramsey and Mary A. Mathias. They have been the parents of ten children born as follows:

James Arthur, born Aug. 7, 1879, died Sept. 10, 1879.

Mary E., born Sept. 19, 1880.

Alice L., born Sept. 6, 1882.

Florence J., born Oct. 11, 1884.

Albert Lester, born March 5, 1887.

Joseph Gershom, born May 28, 1889.

William Chester and Ara Estella, twins, born Sept. 6, 1892, William died, Dec. 27, 1892.

Lawrence L., born Oct. 22, 1894.

Annie Leota, born June 1, 1897.

Their present home is at Rapatee, Ill.

Joseph W., went to Washington, D. C., in 1875, from there he went to Franklin Square, Ohio, then on to Rapatee, Ill., same autumn.  Some years later he went to Seward, Nebr., where he married Sarah R. Anderson, who was born Oct. 21, 1855, at North Point, Pa.  She was the daughter of James Anderson and Jane Grove Anderson.  They have been the parents of ten children all living, born as follows:  Charles Delmer, born Sept. 22, 1880.  Artie Benton, born Sept. 24, 1882.  James Grover, born Sept. 9, 1884;  John Murray, born Sept. 5, 1886.   George V., born April 14, 1888.  Hazel Geneva, Sept. 5, 1889;  Myrtle Belle, June 20, 1891;  Vilbert Coxie, May 16, 1893;  Sadie, May 20, 1895;   Ollie, November 17, 1898.

They reside near Seward, Nebr., but Artie B. and James G., were born in Maquon township, Knox Co., Ill. Charles D. is quite a successful school teacher in Seward Co.

Eliza E. Foster married John Smith. Three children were born to them: George, William and Anna Beatrice, all living. John Smith was killed in the coal bank on Six Mile Run, in October, 1900.

William G. Foster was never married, lives at Rapatee, Ill.

Thomas L. Foster married Annie beat. He is a mine fire boss at Johnstown, Pa. They have no children.

Ira, second son of Thomas, was never married. He had a leg broken on the railroad in 1858, which left him a cripple for life. He died July 27, 1900. He was uncle to about 100 persons at the time of his death.

Aaron Foster, third son of Thomas Foster, was born may 17, 1836. Received a limited education in the backwoods schools of the time. Taught school in his home school, the old Round Knobb.

He married Ellen Dachenbach and after his second child was born he offered his services to his county serving three years in Co. F, 8 Reg. Pa. Reserves.  The company was commanded by Captain Eli Eichleberger, now of Saxton, Pa., and John Eichleberger, now of Hopewell, Pa.  This regiment saw very hard fighting. He was shot through the lungs and through the foot and has been a cripple ever since. He is almost totally blind. Has been a member of the Baptist church for over a quarter of a century.  He lives on his own place near Six Mile Run, Pa.  Has been the father of ten children as follows.

Lovina, aged 42 years, married John Shuke.

David L. died in childhood.

Emma, aged 37, married John Martin.

Allison E., aged 35 years, married Annie Parks, daughter of Zane Parks.

James G., aged 33 years. married first wife Florence Markley; Second wife Mrs. Elizabeth R. Smouse.

Phoeba, aged 30, married Austin Stevens.

Joseph died in 1877 aged two years.

Minnie, aged 25, single.

Rebecca J., aged 23, married Charles Schenk.

Wealthy, aged 20, single.

Lovina has been the mother of twelve children, two are married: July to Milton Edwards and Ella to Charles Zimmerman. They have one child.

Emma one daughter, named Florence.  She is 20 years old and single.

Allison E. has five children, aged as follows:

Chester A., aged 9 years.

J. Marshall, aged 7 years.

Mary, aged 5 years.

William, aged 4 years.

Nina, aged 1 year.

James G. has two children:  Harrison, aged 10 years;  Bessie aged 8 years.

Phoeba has four children, have not their names.  She lives at Altoona, Pa.  The balance of Aaron Foster's family reside at Six Mile Run, Pa.

Wealthy A. Foster married David K. Boyles, son of William Boyles, about 1860.  At the beginning of the Rebellion D. K. Boyles offered himself as a solider, went to the front and served his county faithfully.  He received a very serious wound which caused his death a few years since.  For a great many years Mr. Boyles was a contractor for mason work being a splendid mechanic. For several years he resided in his own home at Fostoria, Pa.  But some fifteen years since he purchased a fine property at Bellwood, six miles east of Altoona, Pa., where he died and where the family still reside. They were the parents of five children:

Nettie died with lung trouble just as she was entering womanhood.

Alice married Harry Burns.  They have several children.

Annie married Leonard Stevens.   They have one son, Bruce.

Howard F. was never married.

The youngest daughter, May resides with her mother.

Joseph Evans Foster, fourth son of Thomas Foster, grew to manhood on the Broad Top Mountains. At the age 22 he enlisted in Co. C, 133d Reg. Pa. Vol., captain, Alexander Bobb, colonel, B. F. Speakman.  They were mustered in at Harrisburg, Pa., on Aug. 14th, 1862.  This regiment saw some very hard fighting on the fields of Antietum, Fredricksburg and Chancellorsville.  After his discharge he worked at the coal business in Bedford and Venango counties, Pa.  Came to Illinois in 1866.  Married Harriet, daughter of James M. Foster.  She and their only child died May 14th, 1871.  Joe has resided at Rapatee for 36 years.  He has been a very useful man.  Is a member of the M. E. church.

William A. Foster was less than 19 years of age when the third call for volunteers was made.  He enlisted in Col. H., 55th, Reg. Pa. Vol., under Captain Mullen of Bedford, Pa. He served three years and was drowned near New York City in Sept. 1864.  He was very ready with his pencil and taught the writer his alphabet from charcoal sketches in the maple sugar camp, in the spring of 1861.

Louisa Foster married Allison H. Edwards, who was also a member of Co. F, 8th. Reg. Pa. Reserves.  They moved to Rapatee, Ill., in September 1876, where they resided for some time.  Mr. Edwards was a carpenter and while here he helped build the Maquon  M. E. church.  They moved to Seward, Neb., in 1878, where A. H. Edwards died.  They were the parents of two daughters:  Nina married Fred Bruce, who is dead, leaving one child, and Naoma died in childhood near Rapatee.  Mrs. Edwards and family live at Seward, Nebr.

Thomas E. married Annie Dachenbach, in 1868.  The mother died several years since.  They were the parents of nine children:

Christina married first husband Samuel Graffice, second husband Daniel McNight.

Mary married Samuel Stevenson.

Harry, unmarried.

Charles, twin, died in infancy.

Jennie, twin, married Samuel Towsand.

Rheuhama married Henry NcNight.

Viola, Dolly and Howard single and Fannie dead.

They all reside at Six Mile Run, Pa.

Septimus, seventh son, married Harriett Hodges.  They had two children: Iambia and Luella.  Septimus died March, 1892, in the prime of manhood, with brain fever.  His wife and daughters reside at Six Mile Run.  He also visited the West, spending 1873 and 1874 in Ohio, Wisconsin, Missouri and in Knox Co., Ill.

Lewis T., eight son was raised on Broad Top.  At the age of twenty-four, July 1876, he left Fostoria, Blair Co., Pa., and came to Rapatee, Ill., where he stayed several years, afterwards going to Seward, Nebr., where he still lives.  He married Mary, daughter of James Anderson.  Seven children have been born to them, all living, viz: Ira, Elmer, Allison, Clem, Charles, Lettie L. and Lizzie Jane.

Susan Jane Foster married Andrew J. Blair.  He died a few years since. They were the parents of nine children, viz:

Phoeba, married James Edmonson.

Loretta, married James Stevenson.

Minnie, married Charles Ullery.

Andrew, John and William are single.

Margaret, Wealthy and one unnamed, dead.

All live at Six Mile Run, Pa.

Samson P., tenth son has spent most of his life on the old homestead.  He visited Rapatee in 1886 and was employed by the writer.  He married Ettie Frick, who was one of those good people with more intellect than body, and after a few years of suffering she died and left two baby boys to the care of the father.

They are named Joseph Elmer and Charles.

Since chapter eighth was written, two events have occurred that deserve mention in our history:

On Tuesday evening, July 8th, 1902, at the home of the bride's parents in Seward, Nebr., Charles Delmer Foster and Miss Bertha Daves were united in marriage by Rev. T. L. Swan of the U.. B. church.  They went to housekeeping in their own home in the north part of Seward city.

The other addition to the chapter will be a brief mention of the work of Foreman Thomas L. Foster in his 36 hours fight with black damp in the Klondike mine at Johnstown, Pa., on July 10 and 11, 1902.  He was in his office when the explosion occurred.

He, with four other brave men, entered the death trap, two of them lost their lives.  The Philadelphia Inquirer says, "Foster and Roberts staggered on, dragging a comrade into safety here giving a word of warning there.  Roberts went down, overcome...  (the rest of this story is lost unless someone has it and would be willing to share it?  Send by e-mail to Gary Foster.

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