John Ray

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JOHN RAY, came to his present home in Burrell township, Armstrong county, in 1868, forty six years ago, and with the exception of five years spent at Leechburg has resided there ever since. He is a native of Germany, born Jan. 8, 1835, in Hessen- Darmstadt, son of Jacob and Elizabeth (Steiger) Ray. His grandparents were also of German birth.

Jacob Ray, the father, came to this country when his son John was a small boy, and upon landing went at once to Pittsburgh, Pa., then to Westmoreland county, where he remained for a short time. From there he moved to Armstrong county, where he bought a farm, and his grandchildren still own one farm which he bought and work another. He had two sons and one daughter.

John Ray was given such advantages as the various places in which the family lived during his boyhood afforded, and he was a farmer throughout his active years, now living retired. He had 120 acres. He is a man universally respected and esteemed in his neighborhood, and has served as supervisor of his township, to which office he was elected on the Republican ticket.

On March 23, 1861, Mr. Ray was married to Jane George, who was born April 5, 1844, daughter of John and Nancy (Baker) George, farming people of Armstrong county, and granddaughter of Peter and Anna (Reichard) George, and of Peter and Pricilla (McAwley) Baker, all of Westmoreland county. Both her grandfathers, Peter George and Peter Baker were Germans. The former was a soldier in the war of the Revolution and also served during the Indian troubles in Westmoreland county, and received a pension for his services. Pricilla McAwley was a daughter of John McAwley, and was of Irish decent. John and Nancy (Baker) George had a family of twelve children. Mr. and Mrs. Ray have had a family of sixteen children, nine sons and seven daughters, namely: Elizabeth, married Samuel Riffer, and died at the age of twenty-seven years; Emma is the wife of Jonas Heckman, and has had seven children (they live in Westmoreland county); William Albert died in 1887, aged twenty- three years; Harvey died in childhood; Jacob Perry who lives in Wheeling, W. Va., married Sarah Klingensmith, of Armstrong county, and has had six children, John Martin who lives in Westmoreland county, married Ida Swank and has had seven children; Malinda Jane is married to Jacob Keppler, of Parks township, this county (they have no children); Edward lives in Wheeling; Clarence Wilmer is married to Emma Wilson, of Armstrong county, and they have had four children; Nancy married Jim Myers, of Gilpin township, and they have three children; Renie died when two years old; Oscar died when thirteen years old; Mary died when eleven years old; Barton Grover is a stationery engineer at Wheeling, W. Va.; one child died a few hours after birth; George Elmer died when three years old. Renie, Oscar, Mary and George Elmer died within a month of Diphtheria. The family are Lutherans in religious connection, attending the Brick Church in Burrell township.

Source: Page 904, Armstrong County, Pa., Her People, Past and Present, J.H. Beers & Co., 1914
Transcribed November 1998 by Nanci Michalkiewicz for the Armstrong County Beers Project
Contributed for use by the Armstrong County Genealogy Project (http://www.pa-roots.com/armstrong/)

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