Blair P Marshall


BLAIR P. MARSHALL, a resident of the borough of Dayton, is one of the active businessmen of his district, being interested in farming, lumbering and the stock business. He was born Oct. 22, 1873, son of William and Mary Ann (Blair) Marshall, and belongs to a family which has held a leading place in this section for many years. He is a descendant of William Marshall, a native of Ireland, who came to America about 1748.

( I ) William Marshall, the emigrant ancestor of this family, was born in 1722 in Ireland. When a young man he went to Scotland, where about 1748 he married Elizabeth Armstrong, and they soon afterward came to America. They settled in the southern part of what was then the Province of Pennsylvania, about sixty miles northwest of Baltimore, Md., near where the Marsh creek crossed the Pennsylvania and Maryland line- in what was known as the Conococheague settlement. It is now included in Adams county, Pa. Their family of six children, John, James, Margaret, William, Archibald and Samuel, were all born at this place. About the year 1783 William and Elizabeth (Armstrong) Marshall removed with part of their family to Westmoreland county, Pa., settling in that portion now included in Indiana county, to which section their sons John and James had emigrated several years previously. They had been driven back by the hostility of the Indians, however, John and his family returning to their first settlement in the East, and James, who then unmarried, stopping at Sewickley settlement. William Marshall, the father, settled on a tract of land at Blacklegs creek, now included in the township of Conemaugh, Indiana county, where he and his wife died, Mr. Marshall in 1796, Mrs. Marshall in 1806. A copy of his will is on record at Greensburg, Pa., in the Westmoreland county courthouse, in Will Book I, page 134. A record of his family appears elsewhere in this work.

( II) William Marshall, third son of William and Elizabeth (Armstrong) Marshall, was born June 3, 1756, and married Catherine Wilson in 1779. Moving to western Pennsylvania, they settled on a tract of land in what in now Black Lick township, Indiana county, but being unable to secure a title to this property they moved in 1803 to Armstrong county, making their home in what is now Wayne township. They were the first white settlers in that region, and they had no neighbors within five miles. Their location was on Glade run, on what is now the site of the Dayton fair grounds, and Mr. Marshall cleared land and built a cabin. In 1813 he moved with his family to the place where the home of his son William afterward stood, built a house, and there passed the remainder of his days. Here he died April 28, 1831, and he was buried in the Glade Run cemetery. He was one of the organizers and first elders of the first Presbyterian Church established at Glade Run, near Dayton, and in his barn was preached the first sermon ever delivered in the neighborhood. Mrs. Marshall, who died in 1817, is buried upon the farm of Benjamin Irwin in Wayne township. Mr. and Mrs. Marshall had a family of nine children: Joseph, Elizabeth ( or Betsy, Mrs. McClelland), Margaret ( Mrs. Benjamin Urban), Mary (or Polly, Mrs. Abel Finley), William, John, James, Robert and Samuel.

( III ) Robert Marshall, son of William and Catherine (Wilson) Marshall, was born Aug. 19, 1799, in what is now Indiana ( then Westmoreland) county, in the vicinity of Clarksburg. After his marriage he and his wife settled on Glade run, where he built a log house about one and a half miles south of what is now Dayton borough. The property was then woods, and he cleared some of the land and ran a distillery. He then bought and moved to a large tract at what is now the site of Dayton borough, and built a house a half mile from town, residing there for some time. At both these places he followed farming. He also bought grain and other farm products which he hauled to Philipsburg, Old Town and Curwensville and exchanged for merchandise. In 1850, Mr. Marshall took his sons William and Thomas H. into partnership with him in the management of his growing interests. They had a general store in Dayton, one of the first established there, and about three hundred acres of land, William and his father looking after the farm and Thomas H. devoting his time to the mercantile end of the business. On April 9, 1868, Robert Marshall sold his real estate to his sons, but he retained his interest in the store until his death. There were few men who did more notable work for the advancement of this section than he accomplished in his lifetime. The cause of education always had a hearty supporter in him, and he gave the ground on which the building of the Dayton Academy stood and was the promoter of that institution. He was one of the originators of the Dayton Soldiers� Orphans� School and its heaviest stockholder. A member of the Associate or Seceder Church, he was one of the founders of the church of that denomination at Glade Run, and its house of worship and burying ground were located upon land donated by him for that propose. After its formation he became a member of the U.P. Church, being one of the organizers of that church at Dayton and taking an active part in its work. In politics he was originally a Whig, later a Republican. Mr. Marshall died Oct. 1, 1881, in the village of Dayton, where he resided from the time of his second marriage.

On Dec. 4, 1821, Mr. Marshall married Mary Hindman, who was born June 6, 1801, daughter of Rev. John Hindman. Mrs. Marshall was a native of the same locality where her husband was born and reared. They had the following children: William; Thomas H.; Catherine, who married John Wilson Marshall ( son of John, grandson of Archibald and great-grandson of William, to whom his wife traced her line ); Caroline, Mrs. William Sloan; Emaline, who died unmarried; Jonathan, who died when seventeen years old; Mary, widow of David W. Lawson, living in Wayne township; and Rebecca K., widow of Rev. Samuel C. Reed, a U. P. minister, now making her home at Beaver, Pa.. The mother of this family died Dec. 29, 1869, and Mr. Marshall married for his second wife, July 25, 1871, Mary Jane Armstrong, who was born Sept. 14, 1834. She now makes her home in Wayne township, Armstrong county, with her niece, Mrs. Samuel P. Butler. No children were born to the second marriage.

John D. Armstrong, father of Mrs. Mary Jane (Armstrong) Marshall, was a native of Ireland. He and his wife Ellen (Lindsey) came to America with their family of five children in 1839 and settled in Wayne township, Armstrong county, Pa., near Belknap, Mr. Armstrong buying a farm which he cultivated during the remainder of his active life. He died there. One child was born to Mr. and Mrs. Armstrong after their arrival in Wayne township, Margaret Ellen, who died young; the others, the five whom they brought to America were: James L., Henry H., Sarah, Mary Jane ( Mrs. Marshall), and John B..

( IV ) William Marshall, son of Robert and Mary (Hindman) Marshall, was born Sept. 24, 1822, near Dayton, in Wayne township, Armstrong county. In 1829 he removed with his parents to Dayton , and in 1850 became a partner with his father and brother Thomas H. Marshall in the store at Dayton and the personal property on the large farm. He was entrusted with the management of the extensive farming interests, his brother looking after the store, and this arrangement continued until 1868, on April 9 of which year the father sold his real estate to the two sons, the business association between these three being subsequently limited to the store interests. Mr. John Campbell was a partner in the mercantile business from 1861 until his death, after which the firm was known as W. & T.H. Marshall until the death of Mr. William Marshall. His son C.R. Marshall then succeeded to his interest, the firm from that time being C.R. & T.H. Marshall. Mr. Marshall continued to increase his land holdings until he had as much as 550 acres in Wayne, 290 acres of this being under cultivation. Like other members of his family he was interested in the Enterprise Lumber Company, the Dayton Soldiers� Orphans� School, and the Dayton Union Academy. He was a Republican in politics and was honored with election to many township offices, and that he had the confidence of those who knew him well is shown in the fact that he was several times chosen as administrator of estates. He was a member and elder of the U.P. Church. Mr. Marshall died Sept. 15, 1891.

On April 19, 1860, William Marshall married Mary Ann Blair, who was born May 7, 1835, near Dayton, Pa., and now makes her home in that borough. She is a member of the U.P. Church. Eight children were born to Mr. and Mrs. Marshall: (1) Laura D., born Jan. 29, 1861, became the wife of James Story and died in 1909. She had children: Clarence, Mary, Mildred and William. (2) Calvin Reed, born Nov. 21, 1862, is a merchant at Dayton and vice president of the First National Bank. He married Molly Ellenberger and their children are Ethel, Alice T. and Lillian R. (3) Mary Rebecca, born Jan. 19,1865, married Jan. 2, 1880 John W. Lias, who is a traveling salesman, and they have had children: William Raymond, Eugene (deceased), Marie, Harold, Kenneth, Dale, Ralph, Gladys and Ronald. (4) Jemima, born April 1, 1867, married John Bott and resided at Apollo, Pa. Their children are: Virginia T., Adriet, Paul, Florence, Charles, Erotha, Bernard, and Jean. (5) a child born Oct. 21, 1867, died in infancy. (6) Caroline, born Dec. 1, 1870, formerly a teacher, was graduated from the Woman�s Medical College at Philadelphia and is now engaged in the practice of medicine at Pittsburgh, Pa. (7) Blair P. is mentioned below. (8) Thirzah M., born Jan. 3, 1878, is engaged in teaching school in Pittsburgh.

James Blair, grandfather to Mrs. William Marshall, came to this country from Ireland, first settling in Huntingdon county, Pa., and thence removing to Westmoreland county where he lived and died. His wife, whose maiden name was Hunter, was born in Scotland.

William Blair, son of James Blair, was reared in Westmoreland county. Coming to Armstrong county, he lived for a time in Wayne township, and eventually returned to his native county, but he spent his last days with his daughter, Mrs. Marshall at Dayton, where he died at the great age of ninety-six years. His wife, Annis (Patterson), was a daughter of Thomas and Sarah (Lytle) Patterson, the former of whom came from Ireland; the latter was of Derry township, Westmoreland county.

( V ) Blair P. Marshall received his education in the local public schools and at Dayton Academy. He began work as his father�s assistant upon the home farm, and has been interested in agriculture all his life, in connection following the lumber and stock business. He farms the old homestead of 110 acres, besides which he has another farm in Wayne township of 120 acres, as well as woodland property. He is one of the prominent agriculturists of his section, intelligent and thoroughly progressive in his work, is one of the managers of the Dayton Fair Association, and one of the most respected citizens of his locality. He is interested in the Dayton Normal Institute. In politics he is a Republican, in religion a member of the U.P. Church.

Mr. Marshall was married June 27, 1901 to Gertrude McLaughlin, daughter of Isaac and Ellen (Patton) McLaughlin, and they resided upon the homestead for five years, Mr. Marshall then building the home in Dayton borough which they have since occupied. Their children are: John, Thomas, Clarence, Blair and George.

Source: Pages 867-870, Armstrong County, Pa., Her People, Past and Present, J.H. Beers & Co., 1914
Transcribed November 1998 by Pam Clark for the Armstrong County Beers Project
Contributed for use by the Armstrong County Genealogy Project (

Armstrong County Genealogy Project Notice:
These electronic pages cannot be reproduced in any format, for any presentation, without prior written permission.

Return to the Beers Project



Return to the Armstrong County Genealogy Project

(c) Armstrong County Genealogy Project


Return to the Armstrong County Genealogy Project

(c) Armstrong County Genealogy Project