Camden C. Cochran


CAMDEN C. COCHRAN, justice of the peace and a prosperous farmer, residing in Wayne township, Armstrong Co., Pa., was born on the farm on which he lives July 4, 1853, son of John Cochran, grandson of William Cochran and a great-grandson of William Cochran.

William Cochran, the great-grandfather, came to America from Ireland and was one of the pioneer settlers in what is now Cowanshannock township, Armstrong county, where he passed the remainder of his life, dying in old age.

William Cochran, son of William, may have accompanied his father from Ireland. He was married in Armstrong county, in 1814, to Mary Marshall, a daughter of John and Jane (Scott) Marshall. Mr. Cochran died Nov. 1, 1876, and the death of his wife occurred, Aug. 3, 1878. They had twelve children, as follows: Nancy, born Dec. 20, 1816, married James Robert Calhoun; Jane, born July 3, 1818, married W. W. Marshall; Eliza M., born Jan. 23, 1820, married Watson S. Marshall; John, born Jan. 16, 1822, married Martha E. McComb; Mary died unmarried; William M., born in 1826, married Martha J. McGaughey; James L., born Aug. 12, 1828, married Mary C. Bricker; Samuel never married; Robert, born Oct. 2, 1832, married Mary Adair; David S., born Feb. 19, 1835, married Lois C. Marshall, Oct. 29, 1867; Levi, born in 1837, died when eleven months old; Sarah Ellen, born June 19, 1839, married, R. L. McGaughey.

The father of the above family cleared a tract of land in Cowanshannock township and built his log cabin around stumps of trees in order to utilize them as seats after the house was completed. The family lived on that farm and did considerable improving as the years went by, until 1831, when they sold and bought a farm at Glade Run, which later came into possession of their son Samuel. William Cochran cleared the native forest growth from this land and developed a good farm, and it was here that both he and his wife passed away. They were quiet, worthy, virtuous people, respected and esteemed by all who knew them, ancestors to whom their descendants may refer with pride.

John Cochran, son of William and father of Camden C. Cochran, was born in Cowanshannock township, Jan. 16, 1822, near the present borough of Atwood, and accompanied his parents to Wayne township in 1831, there spending the rest of his life, remaining at home until his marriage. In 1850 he settled on a farm near Dayton, Pa., which he had pu rchased, and followed farming as his main occupation, although he also did some carpenter work, being skillful in the handling of tools.. In the spring of 1878 he established a dairy, disposing of his milk in the town of Dayton and continued this industry for some time. He was an honest and upright business man and was well known all over Wayne township. He was a Democrat in his political views. On Dec. 21, 1848, he was united in marriage with Martha E. McComb, who was born Nov. 14, 1825, a daughter of George and Elizabeth (Marshall) McComb. George McComb was born Oct. 1, 1793, and was a son of General McComb, of Revolutionary fame. He married Elizabeth Marshall, the second and youngest daughter of James and Elizabeth (Whitesides) Marshall. They lived, in Indiana county, Pa., until 1815, when they moved to near Glade Run, Armstrong county, where George McComb followed farming until 1823, when he built a tannery on his farm, having learned the tanning business in his youth. He conducted it for some years and it was operated later by his sons. Mr. McComb served as a soldier in the War of 1812. He was a useful and representative man, for many years a justice of the peace and an elder in the Glade Run Presbyterian Church. His, death occurred Feb. 17, 1859, and that of his wife on May 26, 1857. They had the following children: Margaret T., James H., Nancy J., John C., Joseph W., Eliza J., Maria E., Martha E., Sarah A., Robert N., Cynthia and Marshall.

To John and Martha E. Cochran two children were born: Camden C. and a daughter who did not survive infancy. John Cochran died Sept. 6, 1884. He was a Democrat in politics, and for many years was a member of the Glade Run Presbyterian Church.

Camden C. Cochran was educated in the township schools and Glade Run Academy and remained at home, assisting his father on the homestead near Dayton, which is now his own property. He became associated in business with his uncle, Samuel Cochran, and together they opened a coal mine on the home property and did a coal business for twenty or twenty-five years, when they sold out to the Dayton Coal Company. Since when Mr. Cochran has given his entire attention to his agricultural pursuits. For many years he has served as secretary of the Dayton Fair Association and as one of its managers. From early manhood he has been more or less interested in public matters, especially in local affairs, and has frequently been elected to office on the Republican ticket, having served with the utmost efficiency as township auditor, secretary of the school board as roadmaster, and in the fall of 1911 he was elected to the office of justice of the peace for Wayne township. With other representative men of this section, he is a stockholder in the Dayton Normal Institute. A natural as well as trained musician for twenty or thirty years Mr. Cochran was prominent in the borough's musical concerns, teaching singing and serving as leader of the Dayton Cornet Band. For seventeen years he has been an elder in the Glade Run Presbyterian Church and for the last nineteen years has led the church choir, and he still takes an active part in the Sunday school.

Mr. Cochran has been twice married. On June 15, 1882, he was united in marriage to Stella Wilson, who was born April 5, 1863, and died May 2, 1901, survived by four children, viz.: Charles W., who is a student in the Western Theological Seminary, preparing for the Presbyterian ministry, married Dessie Shields; Edna is the wife of John P. Stockdale, residing in Wayne township; John L., who resides at home, married Alice Hawk, and they have a daughter, Arabelle Jane; Alfred M., who is a farmer in Illinois, married Nora Dooling. Mr. Cochran's second marriage took place February 28, 1907, to Mrs. Arabelle (Kirkpatrick) Marshall, widow of Robert M. Marshall, formerly a justice of the peace in Wayne township. She is a daughter of James C. and Mary (McMillen) Kirkpatrick, and the venerable Mr. Kirkpatrick resides with Mr. and Mrs. Cochran.

Source: Pages 436, Armstrong County, Pa., Her People, Past and Present, J.H. Beers & Co., 1914
Transcribed September 2001 by Vaughn Davis for the Armstrong County Beers Project
Contributed for use by the Armstrong County Genealogy Project (

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