Tag Archives: John Lancaster

2017 Maryland to Kentucky and Beyond Genealogy Conference

How many of you have ancestors that moved to Kentucky from Maryland during the 1785-1810 immigration of families to the counties of Washington, Marion and Nelson – and, also, Scott County and Breckinridge County, as I have recently discovered?  Are you attending the 2017 Maryland to Kentucky and Beyond, Genealogy Conference in Owensboro, Kentucky, next weekend?  Ritchey and I will be there!  We will be in the vendor section, talking about genealogy and selling my CDs to those who are interested.

Holy Cross Catholic Church

In 1785 sixty families gathered in the Pottinger’s Creek area of Washington County (later to become Marion County).  Basil Hayden, Clement Johnson, Joseph Clark, James Dant, Philip Miles, among others, were those early settlers.  Holy Cross Church is the oldest Catholic church west of the Allegheny Mountains, built in 1792.

St. Charles Catholic Church

Some of these groups of families settled along Hardin’s Creek in 1786, worshiped in the home of Henry Hagan, until the first church was built in 1806 – my home parish of St. Charles Church located in St. Mary’s in Marion County, originally Washington County.  John Lancaster, James Elder, William and Andrew Mudd, Thomas and Ignatius Medley, Bennett Rhodes, and others made this area their home – and many of their descendants still live there today.

St. Francis Catholic Church

Also in 1786, a group of Maryland settlers intended to share the Pottinger’s Creek settlement.  They took flatboats down the Ohio River and landed at Maysville, known as Limestone at that time.  They found such beautiful land east of the river, in what was Woodford Count, later Scott, they decided to travel no further.  The first church was built in 1794, St. Francis.  It is the second oldest parish in the state.  The present church was built in 1820 at a cost of $3,600.  Names of those early settlers were Jenkins, Gough, Leak, Combs, Tarleton, Worland, Greenwell, and James.

St. Rose Catholic Church

In 1787 Philip Miles, Thomas Hill, Henry Cambron, Joseph and James Carrico, Thomas Hamilton, Basil Montgomery, many members of the Smith family, and others came to Cartwright’s Creek.  In 1798, they built a church known as St. Ann’s – and this is where many of the older members are buried.  The church was abandoned once St. Rose Church was built in 1806.  There is nothing in the field where St. Ann’s Church and Cemetery used to be.  This is the area most of my ancestors settled in – Montgomery, Carrico, Dillehay, Smith, Cambron and others – lived from those very early days until my grandmother died in 1986.  Such a rich heritage concentrated in one county – since my father’s ancestors also lived in Washington County from 1860.

Holy Name of Mary Catholic Church

The Rolling Fork settlement – today in Calvary, Marion County – was established in 1798.  Leonard Hamilton, Robert Abell, Clement and Ignatius Buckman, John Raley and others left their marks here.  Ignatius Buckman was killed by Indians and was the first buried where Holy Name of Mary Cemetery is now.  The older portion of the cemetery is on a small knoll, at the back of the church.  The newer portion is across the small road that leads back to the cemetery, a nice, flat area with many gravestones.

Basilica of St. Joseph Proto-Cathedral

Captain James Rapier, with his sons Charles and William, settled on southeast of what is now Bardstown, on Beach Fork of Salt River (Poplar Neck).  A few years later Thomas Gwynn, Anthony Sanders and Nehemiah Webb (originally a Quaker) settled close by.  The home of Thomas Gwynn, now the site of the Nazareth Community of the Sisters of Charity, was used for church services until St. Joseph Church was built in 1798 in what is now St. Joseph Cemetery.  The cathedral was built in 1816.  McManus, Reynolds, Howard, Lancaster, members of the Hayden family and William McQuown were early settlers.  Thomas Howard lived in the vicinity where St. Thomas Church is now located.  His home was used for church, and in 1810 he willed the farm to the church.    In 1812 St. Thomas Church was established.  Many old settlers are buried in this cemetery.

St. Thomas Catholic Church

The Cox’s Creek settlement in Nelson County was begun about 1792.  Some of my ancestors came to this area – Gardiner, Elder, Montgomery – along with Thomas Higdon, Richard Jarboe, Valentine Thompson, Hezekiah Luckett and Charles Wathen.  This is the oldest parish in Nelson County, located in Fairfield.  Unfortunately we have not visited this church and cemetery.

The County of Breckinridge was formed in 1799, but eight years previously, when a portion of Hardin County, it was settled by Leonard Wheatley, and soon followed by Richard Mattingly, Elias Rhodes, Barton Mattingly, Ignatius Coomes, William McGary and others.  Richard Mattingly’s house was used as a church until 1811, when St. Anthony was built.  Just found out about the Breckinridge settlement during my research – another to add to our list to visit!

There are many more settlers who came from Maryland to Kentucky in those early years.  It would be impossible to name them all.  This conference first began in 1990 when it was held at Nazareth, Kentucky.  In 1992, it was held in St. Mary’s at St. Charles Church; in 1994 in Cape Girardeau, Perry County, Missouri; and back in 1996 at St. Charles – the first time Ritchey and I attended.  In 1998, Owensboro, Kentucky, was the location, and we attended again.  In 2000 the gathering was held at Leonardtown, in St. Mary’s County, Maryland.  2002 found the conference at St. Catharine Motherhouse in Washington County, which we attended; 2004 in Hannibal, Missouri.  2008 at the St. Thomas Farm in Bardstown; back in Leonardtown in 2010.  The last reunion was held at St. Catharine College in Washington County in 2014 – which was my first time to attend as a vendor.  This has been such a wonderful group of people!  I’ve made so many friends and found much information for my families!  If you have any family members that originated from Maryland, especially the counties of Charles, St. Mary and Prince Edward, you may want to come.  Perhaps I will see you there?

Gravestones From St. Charles Catholic Cemetery In Marion County

St. Charles, located at St. Mary in Marion County, Kentucky, was my home parish for many years before my marriage.  To tell you the truth, I didn’t realize the amount of history there at the time – isn’t that the way?  Today I share nine photos of gravestones from this cemetery.

Mother – M. Harriet Hamilton, 1857-1901.  Resting in Peace.

Richard Bowman, October 22, 1915 – September 27, 1918.  ‘A precious one from us has gone, A voice we love is stilled.  A place is vacant in our home, Which never can be filled.  Mama’s Babe.’

W. B. Higdon, 1842-1923.  Emma O’Bryan, his wife, 1847-1933.

Andrew Jackson Mudd, born June 9, 1815, died October 11, 1883.  ‘The just shall be everlasting remembrance.’

S. A. Buckman, relict of B. Spalding, wife of A. J. Mudd, born March 12, 1827, died September 15, 1873.

Cynthia Ann, wife of C. Cissell, born June 15, 1825, died January 7, 1872.

Mahala A., wife of G. L. Hamilton, born May 15, 1824, died September 2, 1876.  ‘Bereft of thee, mother dear, Thy grave will be a holy spot.  But still we’ll think that thou art near, For thou art not to be forgot.’

William Logsdon, 1799-1880.  Alice Logsdon, 1818-1903.

John Lancaster, born in Charles County, Maryland, January 27, 1766, died April 24, 1838.  Catherine Lancaster, born March 29, 1773, died June 29, 1847.

1806 Will and Codicil of Robert Hayden


 In the marriage records of Washington County, Kentucky, I find a Robert Hayden who married Eleanor Howard March 20, 1795.  A second marriage for Robert Hayden to Elizabeth Hill, February 21, 1805.  This could very likely be the Robert Hayden below.  He probably came from Maryland, possibly the son of Basil Hayden.  Since his second marriage lasted only 18 months before his death, there were likely no children from this marriage, and why he appointed his brother, Stanislaus Hayden, as guardian to his children.  The name of the middle child is very hard to read, but I believe it is Ansalom.

Will and Codicil of Robert Hayden

November 1806

Washington County, Kentucky

Will Book A, Pages 414-416

In the name of God, amen. I, Robert Hayden, of the County of Washington and state of Kentucky, being sick, but of sound memory and understanding, do constitute and appoint this to be my last will and testament in manner and form as follows. My soul I resign to my creator who gave it me, and as to worldly goods, after all my just debts be paid, it is my will that my estate shall be managed by my brother, Stanislaus Hayden as the law directs, as I leave him sole Executor to my estate and no security to be required of him for his performance. I also leave my said brother, Stanislaw, guardians to my three children, Sarah, Ansalom and Maria, and it is my wish that he shall raise them. My brown or dark bay mare, Bomza, is not to be considered in my estate as I have already disposed of her to Rev. Mr. Edward Samuels for church purposes. And in testimony of this my last will I do hereunto set my hand and fix my seal this 20th day of August 1806.

Robert Hayden

Witnesses present – John Lancaster, Charles Gough and Robert Constable

At a County Court held for Washington County the third day of November 1806.

This will was proved by the oaths of John Lancaster, Charles Gough and Robert Constable, three of the subscribing witnesses thereto and ordered to be recorded. And the motion of the Executor therein named who made oath and executed and acknowledged bond as the law directs, a certificate is granted him for obtaining a probate thereof in due form.

Teste. John Reed


Whereas to all appearances Divine providence is about to put a period to my existence and being desirous to put my worldly affairs in actuation most agreeable to my kind, and for this purpose a few days ago made my last will and testament and thereby appointed my beloved friend and brother, Stanislaus Hayden my whole and sole Executor, who is also appointed a guardian to my three children by my first wife. It being therefore my further will and desire that my negro boy named Sam be hired out by my said Executor by private bargain or if he should choose to keep him himself on his plantation he shall be at liberty so to do at a reasonable price and he may if he leases have the terms fixed by two disinterested men that being a matter of some concern to me. I therefore wish my Executor not let him to any person who in his opinion will not treat him well, and bring him up in a Christian and proper manner, cloth him well and pay his taxes and the profits arising from his hire to go as the law directs. In testimony whereof I, Robert Hayden, of Washington County do make and ordain this an addition to my last will and testament this 25th day of August 1806.

Robert Hayden

Witnesses present – Joseph Medley, Ignatius Medley

At a county Court held for Washington County the third day of November 1806.

This Codicil was proved by the oaths of Joseph Medley and Ignatius Medley, by two of the subscribing witnesses thereto and ordered to be recorded.



St. Charles Church Cemetery – Marion County, Kentucky


St. Charles was my home parish until my marriage in 1981.  It is a little country church, the cemetery at the back and left side.  I played the organ for Mass from the time I was 15 until Ritchey and I moved to Mercer County.  My dad is buried in this cemetery.

  • James M. Lamkin – September 10, 1856 – May 28, 1856
  • John Lamkin – August 28, 1861 – September 30, 1862
  • Benjamin Lancaster – April 25, 1799 – September 22, 1840 – married Ann Pottinger
  • Catherine Lancaster – March 29, 1773 – June 29, 1847 – married John Lancaster, Sr.


  • Charles Francis Lancaster – December 8, 1832 – March 20, 1870
  • Edward Baker Lancaster – April 2, 1838 – September 11, 1868
  • Frances Mary Lancaster – June 30, 1853 – October 10, 1853
  • Francis Xavier Lancaster – March 7, 1870 – December 1890
  • George Washington Lancaster – October 4, 1835 – July 6, 1873 – married Martina Smith
  • John Alexander Lancaster – November 5, 1829 – October 3, 1850
  • John E. Lancaster – November 12, 1829 – May 5, 1859
  • John Lancaster – January 24, 1797 – April 12, 1867 – married Mary Rose Hayden


  • John Lancaster, Sr. – January 27, 1766 – April 24, 1838 – married Catherine Miles
  • Martina (Smith) Lancaster – January 18, 1840 – October 25, 1891 – married George Washington Lancaster
  • Mary Rose (Hayden) Lancaster – 1803 – October 2, 1845 – married Dr. John Lancaster
  • Susan Vincent (Smith) Lancaster – 1849 – 1886 – married Benjamin Joseph Lancaster
  • Thomas H. Lancaster – December 28, 1837 – April 25, 1919
  • Patricia Flanagan Langley – March 8, 1943 – December 26, 1993
  • Elizabeth (Russell) Lanham – 1832 – July 6, 1853 – married J. Marcilous Lanham
  • J. Raymond Lee – December 11, 1900 – July 29, 1959 – married Kathryn Lucille McCauley
  • Kathryn Lucille (McCauley) Lee – May 28, 1904 – ? – married J. Raymond Lee


  • Bartholomew Calhoun Leonardi – 1872-1936 – married Mary Virginia Elder
  • Mary Virginia (Elder) Leonardi – September 25, 1878 – Jun3 1, 1958 – married Bartholomew Calhoun Leonardi
  • Walter Leonardi – 1904-1914
  • Alphonsus Joseph Lesousky – January 26, 1892 – December 14, 1868 – married Lavinia Russell
  • Joseph Lesousky – March 19, 1922 – April 26, 1936
  • Lavinia (Russell) Lesousky – October 7, 1896 – May 10, 1961 – married Alphonsus Joseph Lesousky
  • Samuel Livers – 1771 – April 4, 1845 – married Catherine McIlvoy
  • Alice (McIlvoy) Logsdon – 1818 – 1903 – married William Logsdon
  • Alice M. Logsdon – July 2, 1852 – February 7, 1872


  • C. Alexander Logsdon – April 14, 1857 – ? – married Josephine Bean
  • Elizabeth A. (McAtee) Logsdon – November 11, 1847 – April 1, 1918 – married Thomas H. Logsdon
  • Joseph Herman Logsdon – March 22, 1898 – July 28, 1919 – married Rose Mattingly
  • Josephine (Bean) Logsdon – 1858 – 1907 – married C. Alexander Logsdon
  • Louise Logsdon – 1851 – 1928
  • Robert Adrian Logsdon – April 28, 1918 – February 19, 1932
  • Susan M. (Thompson) Logsdon – 1883 – 1960 – married Joseph Herman Logsdon
  • Thomas Martin H. Logsdon – July 16, 1841 – October 31, 1907 – married Elizabeth Ann McAtee
  • William Logsdon – 1799-1880 – married Alice McIlvoy
  • Henry Lyon – September 17, 1812 – January 5, 1856

St. Charles Church To Celebrate 225 Years

This article is a year old, St. Charles celebrated its 226th year last month.  But I thought it interesting since it included the history of the church.  This was my home parish for many years.  I was organist for most of the years I was there – beginning at the age of 15.  In 1986 when St. Charles was 200 years old I was invited back to play for the special Mass held for the occasion.  Since so many were expected, the Mass was held outdoors, beside the church.  There was a large raised stage for the altar with folding chairs fanning out in all directions – even into the adjoining cemetery.  The choir had practiced special music, including “The Bells of St. Mary’s” in honor of the name of the community – St. Mary, Kentucky – and the seminary of the same name that was just a mile or two up the road.  A large dinner was prepared and waiting for all there.

Many of the parishioners of St. Charles parish are descendants of Catholic pioneers from Maryland – primarily St. Mary’s County and Charles County.  I can trace my roots, several of my lines, back to Maryland!  Most of the Marylanders settled in Marion, Washington and Nelson Counties.  At the very beginning there was no church building.  Mass was said in people’s homes – which happened every few months or so.  The first church was built of logs, the building of which was overseen by Father Charles Nerinx, who was the first resident pastor of St. Charles Church from 1805 to 1824.  The first brick church was built in 1829, and the present-day church in 1906.

(The photos are mine, taken March 26, 2009.)

John Cissell, born December 18, 1794, died July 3, 1865

from The Record, Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky

October 13, 2011

Historic parish in St. Mary, Ky., will hold celebration Oct. 16

by Marnie McAllister

St. Charles Church sits on a hill surrounded by a rambling parish cemetery in the Marion County countryside near Loretto, Kentucky, just a field away from the original site of the first Sisters of Loretto community.

It’s the second-oldest parish West of the Allegheny Mountains and will celebrate it’s 225th anniversary on Sunday, Oct. 16.  St. Charles was established in St. Mary a year after Holy Cross Church was formed in 1785 at Holy Cross, Kentucky.

Parishioners will mark the anniversary with the help of Archbishop Joseph E. Kurtz, who will preside at the celebration.  It will begin with a musical prelude and a presentation of church history at 10:15 a.m.  The liturgy will begin at 10:45 a.m. to be followed by a luncheon on the parish grounds.

St. Charles is old to be sure; but it’s not an aging parish.  It has an active parish council, well-kept buildings and grounds and an active congregation – 254-families strong – that’s deeply connected to the parish’s roots.

John Lancaster, born in Charles County, Maryland, 1767, died 1835. His wife, Catherine Lancaster

Because the parish’s roots are so deep and because so many of the nearby Catholic churches were carved out of St. Charles parish, the church is expecting a large crowd for the anniversary – up to 1,200 people.

St. Charles Church figures prominently in Kentucky’s Catholic history.  When the Sisters of Loretto formed in 1812, they lived in a small cabin a field away from St. Charles.  They trudged across the field to attend Mass at the parish.

The parish also lies just up the road from the now-closed but once auspicious St. Mary’s College and  Seminary.  A host of priests for the Archdiocese of Louisville – and for dioceses around the nation – were educated there.  So were several Kentucky governors and some U.S. congressmen and senators, said Father Clyde Crews, historian for the Archdiocese of Louisville.

The college was a testament to the high value St. Charles parishioners – and other area Catholics – placed on education, he noted.  The parish, he said, is a “treasured place in Kentucky’s history.”

“This is going to be perhaps the most documented celebration the parish has had,” said Michael Cecil, a member of the parish council and of the anniversary committee.  “We’re going to have a DVD and a pictoral history  And we may plan a historic memorial garden to memorialize the people buried there.

“We have to remember our ancestors,” he noted.  “You tend to forget about them.  And we’ve got to preserve (the history of the parish) for the future generations.”

Searching through baptismal records, written in Latin, for the name of my ancestor, Ellen Lyons Smith. She is buried in St. Charles Cemetery, died 1859, but the stone was broken and removed.

Robert B. Lancaster Biography

from Marion County, Kentucky – Biographies

Robert B. Lancaster, farmer and distiller, was born in 1835, and is a son of Benjamin Lancaster and grandson of John Lancaster, who came from Charles County, Maryland, to Kentucky, settling near the present village of Loretto, Marion County. John Lancaster had a large family; his son Benjamin was born in 1799 and passed his entire life in Marion County.  He married Ann Pottinger of one of the oldest families of Nelson County and had a family of eight children, of whom five grew to maturity, viz.: Mary J., who died in 1844, in early womanhood, Samuel P., James M., Robert B. and Ann E Lancaster, the last of whom died in 1868.  The entire family were adherents of the Catholic religion.  The father, Benjamin Lancaster, died in 1840 and the mother in 1881.  Robert B. was born near Loretto, was but five years old when he removed with his widowed mother to Nelson County, and there grew to manhood, receiving a good English education in St. Joseph’s College of Bardstown.  He embarked in the mercantile business (1856) in Lebanon, but returned to Nelson County, pursuing the vocation of farming until he permanently located in Lebanon in 1874, since which time he has been variously employed in merchandising, farming, distilling and trading.  In 1867 he married Miss Mary Teresa Abell, daughter of John and Jane (Spalding) Abell.  She died January 6, 1879, leaving six children as follows:  Mary J., Anna E., Joseph S., Benjamin H., John A., and Mary T. Lancaster.  His present wife, to whom he was married in 1881, is Sallie Dougherty of Louisville.  Their only issue is Robert B. Lancaster, Jr.

Will of Charles Montgomery

Charles Montgomery was my 4th great-grandfather.  He was born in Charles County, Maryland, July 25, 1750, the son of Peter Montgomery and Margaret Hagan.  Charles married Mary Ann Elder, daughter of Charles Elder and Julia Ward, January 27, 1787, in Maryland.  They moved their family to Washington County, Kentucky, about 1795.  They had 10 children before Charles died on April 26, 1809:  John Henry, Samuel Louis, Anne Frances, Benedict Elder, Mary Ann, Mary Eleanor, William Peter, Ann Rebecca, Elizabeth Margaret and Charles Pius Montgomery.  I am descended through their son William Peter who married Mary “Polly” Yates.  I am not sure where Charles Montgomery and Mary Ann Elder Montgomery are buried, but would have to guess in the cemetery of the old St. Ann’s Church.  There are no stones left in the cemetery, and probably no records – at least none that I’ve found.

Washington County, Kentucky, Will Book B

pp. 21-22

In the name of God, Amen.  I, Charles Montgomery, of the County of Washington and State of Kentucky, being delicate of body but of sound memory and understanding do constitute and appoint this to be my last Will and Testament as follows:  I give and bequeath unto my beloved wife Mary Ann Montgomery the plantation and tract of land whereon I now live to sell, convey and dispose of forever, as she may think proper.

Item 2nd.  I assign unto my wife all the cash debts due me by bond or notes.

Item 3rd.  I also give and bequeath unto my wife all the Negroes to be kept for the use of herself and the children or to be hired out as she may judge best, or to be sold by her if she chooses.

Item 4th.  I also give my wife during her single life the tract of land I purchased of William Wright, reserving therein a home and support for my daughters so long as they live single and after that to be equally divided amongst my sons.

Item 5th.  I give and bequeath unto my wife, in order to make her still more to raise our children, all the residue of my estate leaving her entire and sole executrix, without giving bond and security to the Court for the performance thereof.  In testimony whereof I have hereunto set my hand and affixed my seal this 13th day of April 1809.

                                                         Charles Montgomery

The subscribers do certify that Charles Montgomery signed and acknowledged the above to be his last Will and Testament and being in his senses.  Given under our hand the date above.

John Lancaster, Peter Higdon, Jeremiah Lancaster.

At a County Court held for Washington County the eighth day of May, 1809, this will was proved by the oaths of John Lancaster, Peter Higdon and Jeremiah Lancaster, Sr., subscribing witnesses thereto and ordered to be recorded.