Saturday, September 13, 2008

Owen Family


The Owen family gets confusing around the time of the Revolutionary War in the area of Goshen, NY. Descendants of Edward Owen of Connecticut and descendants of the Long Island, NY Owen family all ended up in the same area, with several Jonathans thrown in to confuse the issue even more. An extensive study done by James William Hook of Connecticut, and published in The American Genealogist (Vol. 30, #3, July 1954) indicates that the ancestors of Timothy Owen of Long Island and Goshen descends from the Long Island Owens, so it appears that that is where our American Owen family begins.

The Long Island Owen family appear to be the emigrant Reverend George Owen, DD of Wales and sons. He mentions his wife, Mary, and children, George (eldest son), William, John, Charles, Mary and Elizabeth. The will was dated 1 July, 1690. The inventory attached to the probate papers was dated 1 November, 1690, indicating that George had died somewhere between July and November. This inventory is quite extensive, which explains how he and his sons were able to come to the new country.

Dr. George Owen's inventory, presented above indicated several land holdings such as mills, livestock, crops and a large main property. The house on that property included such rooms as a loft chamber, a ____ chamber & closet, a purple chamber & closet, a study, a great parlor, a little parlor with silver plate, a rood chamber and closet (Merriam Webster defines rood as”a large crucifix on a beam or screen at the entrance to the cancel of a church”)1, and a rood room, which are appropriate to a doctor of theology. There was also a nursery, a maid's chamber, and a groom's chamber.Others include a stout house and a brew house, a long room, etc, which may or may not be part of the main property. He had a stable, a coach and four, and mentions goods in the granary at M____house. I don't know if that's the name of the main house or another. In the body of the will he left his wife Mary the land and fields of Colby, with the water corn grist mill; to his children he left the lands of Melina and Eglosyrow with one water corn grist mill, each having the profits for a term of 2 years, then passing it on to the next, and finally remaining with the oldest son, George. George also received the lands at Broomley in Norberth Parish.2

George Owen was found to be the first Owen in Brookhaven, Suffolk County, Long Island when he obtained a land grant in October 1679. A record from 1701 of a land transaction mentions Jonathan Owen, a brother of Jonathan, and indicates the land was owned by Jonathan's and George's father, and that he had probably died before this transaction. A will of Charles Owen of Wales, proved in NY, mentions his mother Mary, as well as the will of his father, George, Owen, DD. This will led the researcher to the Senior Owen's will and ties the Owen boys together (except William) as brothers. Other Owen names mentioned in early Long Island land records (Evan, Moses) appear to be the sons of the younger George. Occupation is another thing that ties these gentlemen together. They were all listed as being joiners or carpenters.

There are numerous land records involving the Owen brothers as well as tax lists from early Long Island. There are George's ear marks for cattle, lists of freeholders, and records of offices held by George (trustee and constable).

Although not provable without uncertainty, it appears that the children of George are George, Sarah, Aaron, Timothy and Eleazer. (In the article the children of John, Moses and Jonathan are also indicated, with sources.)3

Sarah married Eleazer Hawkins, and they had 10 children and lived in Stony Brook, LI,NY. Aaron moved to Westchester County, where he bought land. Eleazer was mentioned in Long Island land records, but no further.

Timothy Owen ended up in the Goshen/Warwick , Orange, NY area, producing a will at Goshen in February of 1761, which was proved on 4 March, 1761. The listing of children in his will (Ruth, eldest son listed as “crazy”, Timothy, John, Israel, Anning, Mowbray, Sarah and Elizabeth) lend credence to Timothy's marriage to Ruth Mowbray. The Mowbray family, another early Long Island family, will be discussed later.

Timothy's will:

Page 23.--In the name of God, Amen. I, TIMOTHY OWEN, of the Precinct of Goshen, in Orange County, cordwainer. "Knowing that I am every hour liable to Death, and being of sound mind," All my estate to be sold, and all debts and funeral charges paid, and the remainder to my five sons and two daughters, Timothy, John, Israel, Anning, Mowbray, Sarah, and Elizabeth. My daughter Ruth having received her portion at her marriage. As several of my children are young, their parts are to be kept at interest till of age. "And whereas my eldest son is crazy, and fearing the same may increase upon him, my executors are to take charge of his portion, and supply his wants so long as it shall last. I make my friends, Gersham Owen, Nathaniel Owen, of Ulster County, and Ebenezer Owen, of Pochaik, executors." Dated February 16, 1761. Witnesses, (Rev.) Abner Brush, John Gale, Jr., James Little. Proved before John Gale, Surrogate, March 4, 1761.4

You will note that he calls himself a “cordwainer”. The dictionary defines a cordwainer as a person who made shoes and other articles from soft leather. Historically a cobbler repaired shoes.

Ruth married Thomas Gustin of Connecticut. (A genealogy of the Gustin family connected the Connecticut and Long Island Owen families, refuted by the Hook article). Timothy, in the Revolutionary War in Seneca County, NY, was in Warwick in 1790, but then returned to Seneca County. Israel married Jane Ferrier and served in the Orange County Militia in the Revolutionary War. Anning also went to Seneca County in about 1800. Mowbray served in the Ulster County Militia, was in Warwick in 1790 and also moved to Seneca County about 1800. There appear to be no records of daughters Sarah and Elizabeth.5

It is son John that we want to follow. He was living in Goshen in 1790 with his family, which included 3 males over 16, 1 male under 16, and 5 females with 1 slave.Administration of his estate went to his brother, John Owen of Warwick, in 1796. A Family Treemaker CD lists John as the husband of Elizabeth Boyle, with children listed as Millicent, Sarah, Archibald and Nellie, probably an incomplete list given the listing in the 1790 census. This source lists John's birth year as 1743. A record of marriages from the First Presbyterian Church, Goshen, Orange, Ny lists the marriage date of John and Elizabeth as 10 January, 1779.6 We will follow Archibald, from records of Elizabeth Horton at the Orange County Genealogical Society.

Archibald is listed in the 1800 census in Goshen, with 2 males from 10-15, 1 males from 16-25, 1 female from 10-15, 4 females from 16-25 and 1 female over 45 (mother, Elizabeth?). As Archibald was about 25 at this census, these are probably his siblings. One slave was also listed.7 Archibald married Margaret Cain 14 February 1801.8 By the 1810 census he is listed with younger children and no older female, indicating that Elizabeth (if that was indeed her in the earlier census) died before this census. On the 1820 census, the family has continued to grow, and 3 people are listed as engaged in agriculture. There is no longer a slave listed. 9

Archibald's will, made 6 May, 1842, and proved 10 April 1848 mandates that his wife, Margaret (Cain) Owen, was to receive firewood provided at her door by son Archibald, Jr. Archibald, Jr was to receive all of the family real estate. The other children, Frances (Mrs. John Poppino), John ( in Illinois), William G, Daniel Cain, Priscilla (Mrs. Samuel S. Millspaugh) of Yates County, NY received various amounts from the estate.10

Son Daniel Cain Owen, born about January, 1804, also lived in Goshen, where he is listed in the 1830 census. Elizabeth Horton's notes list his marriage to Juliana Hulse as 16 December, 1824 in the First Presbyterian Church in Goshen, NY. By the 1830 census the couple is listed with 1 male under 5, 1 female 5-10, 1 female 10-15.11 Son Edward M. was born 28 February, 1828 in Big Island, near Goshen, NY.

Big Island is near Goshen, Warwick, Florida and Chester, NY.

Starting with the 1850 census, the family is listed in the Town of Goshen, and we see Edward Owen for the first time listed with his father, Daniel, Edward's wife Lucretia, and son William H Owen, who was born 31 May 1849. Daniel's wife, Juliana had died in 1847. A second William Owen is also listed-Edward's brother (He died 17 April, 1845 at age 31).12 Daniel, Edward and brother William are all listed as farmers.13 Edward was married to Lucretia Margaret Elmer on 12 January, 1848 by the Rev. William Timlow of the Amity Presbyterian Church, outside of Warwick, NY.14 The Elmer family is a very old Connecticut family and will be discussed elsewhere.

Edward and Lucretia moved around a bit, although they stayed in Orange County. They remained in Goshen until after the 1860 census, with the family growing to 6 children. By 1870 they are in the Town of Montgomery outside Walden, with 9 children. They are now living 4 families away from Hiram and Chrissy Crans, parents of Renwick Crans, who will become the father of Mary Irene, William Owen's future wife.

Edward and Lucretia had at least 11 children, born between 1849 (William H, the eldest) and 1869 (George Washington Owen, the youngest). A cousin, discovered on the Owen and Elmer message boards, who is a granddaughter of George Washington Owen, reports that she thought there were twins born after her grandfather, but I have not found any record of them. There is an Edward Owen listed in Newburgh, but his father is reported as Joseph.

Edward and Lucretia are listed in several land transactions. In 1861 they bought from Abraham Dickerson land in the Town of Crawford, which was the farm purchased by George Crawford from Henry Weller in 1847, about 100 acres.15 In 1864 they bought from Marcus Sears a lot in the Village of Montgomery on the East side of Union Street that was occupied by George Comfort. It was bounded on the east by “Mead Alley”.16 They sold this same piece of property in 1867.17 Margaret also inherited land in Warwick from the estate of Joseph Wilcox, deceased.18 As Margaret Lucretia's mother was Sally Wilcox, it may be that he was a grandfather. Joseph Wilcox's daughter, Harriet married Archibald Owen, Jr, so there is more than one Owen-Wilcox connection.

The purchase of the farm from Abraham Dickerson appears to have resulted in the move of Edward and Lucretia from Goshen to Walden in the Town of Montgomery by the time of the 1870 census. According to the 1875 NY State Agricultural Statistics Edward had about 335 acres of land worth abourt $10000 in land and buildings and another $2500 in stock (worth $186,753 and $46688 respectively in 2007). He grew wheat, oats, rye, Indian corn and potatoes. He also harvested 400 bushels of fruit from 75 trees and sold 14400 gallons of milk from his cows. 19 In an 1878-79 Directory for Orange County Edward is still listed as a farmer in the Town of Montgomery. Edward and wife remain in the Town of Montgomery until the 1900 census when they are living in Blooming Grove Township in the Village of Washingtonville with son Daniel. Edward and Daniel are listed as farmers.20

William H. Owen, born 31 May 1849 married Mary Irene Crans, daughter of Renwick Crans, probably around 1870, based on the birth of their oldest child around 1871. By the 1875 NY State census William and Irene were living in Walden, near Edward and Lucretia.21 He is listed as a farmer just as his father is.

At the time of the 1880 census, Edward and Lucretia and William and Irene have continued to live near each other in the Town of Montgomery. The younger children, Jasper, Susan, Lizzie and George continue to live at home with Edward and Lucretia. William and Irene now have Cora, Alfred and William, ages 8, 5 and 3. Both are still listed as farmers.22

Mary Irene Crans

Born 15 September, 1850 in

Little Britain, NY

Died 24 May, 1936 in

Walden, NY

Between the 1880 and 1890 censuses, William and Irene's family grew to 7 children, with Harriet (Hattie) the last and eighth child born in 1891. By the time of the 1900 census, the two oldest children, Cora and Alfred were living away from home, and the rest of the children still lived at home. William Renwick, 23 is listed as a blacksmith. David M.,18 and Edward, 15 are listed as farm laborers (Interestingly, in the Town of Crawford a David M. and Edward E. Owen are listed as servants/farm laborers). Francis (Frank), Nellie and Hattie are at school.23

The one room schoolhouse the Owen children attended. It is

across from Hill Street, on County Rte. 17, Searsville

Alfred became a plumber and was in that business for about 60 years in Bloomingburg, Sullivan County, NY. Cora, the eldest child, married George Hultslander in December of 1891, just a few months after Hattie, the youngest child was born. Unfortunately he died in November of 1893. She later (about 1897) was married to Fred DeGraw.

By 1900 Edward and Lucretia have moved to the Village of Washingtonville in Blooming Grove Township. Son Daniel has remained with them, and he and Edward are listed as farmers.24 However, Edward died in February of 1901. His death is listed as having occurred in Craigville, NY, located between Chester and Washingtonville. 25

On the 1910 census Cora and Fred with son Reginald are living on Orchard Street in Walden, and sister Nellie, who is now 19 is living with them, “working out” as a dressmaker (She was an excellent seamstress).26 Now she is in position to meet her future husband, Edward Stoehr.

Cora & Fred De Graw, Nellie & Edward Stoehr

William continues to farm, with son William R continuing to live at home, still listed as a blacksmith. Edward is helping his parents on the farm and Hattie remains at home in the Town of Montgomery.1 Frank has recently married (about 1909) Mary Ella Sease and is living in Walden, working at the knife works. 28 Alfred remains in Sullivan County. His wife is listed as Sarah L, and there are three children by 1910. 29 His obituary later lists his second wife, Emma Catherine Hagan. David has remained working on the farm in the Town of Crawford.30

Margaret, widow of Edward M Owen has moved in with her daughter Lizzie, who married Almeron Scott, and is now living in the Town of Hamptonburg in Orange County. They are working a fruit farm in 1910.31 Margaret died of bronchial pneumonia in 1912 while living there.

To quickly follow the rest of Edward M and Margaret Lucretia's other children: Dewitt/Daniel C -this is confusing. On the 1860 census, Dewitt C appears with a birth year of 1852. In 1870, Daniel is listed as being 18, which would mean he was born in 1852. Neither is listed on the 1875 NY State Census. In 1880, neither Daniel or Dewitt is mentioned, but in 1900, Daniel is back, listed as a son , age 35, with a birthday of September, 1864. There does not appear to be another Daniel in the family tree fits that birth date.

Nothing more is known of Jasper either. He is listed with no other occupation than “at home” on the 1880 census at age 30, so there may have been some health issues, and he is not listed with the family after 1880. Also, nothing more is known of Anna, except from Helen Stoehr Piddock's notes. She noted that she married Mr. Jewel, and Helen did have some photos of people named Jewel in her collection from Maybrook, NY.

Joseph stayed in the Orange County area, marrying Mary Millspaugh and having 6 children. According to Helen Stoehr's notes, Ellen married Alonzo Wood, possibly moving to Pennsylvania. Floyd married and stayed in the area. Susan married Joseph Lux, had children and lived in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. As mentioned earlier, Lizzie married Almeron Scott, and farmed in Orange County, having at least 2 children.

George Washington Owen married Angelina Cruver, moved to Iowa between 1900, 1910, and had several children. By 1930 the family was in Michigan. One of his children-Eva- was the mother of the cousin, now in her 80s, who remains actively pursuing the Owen/Elmer genealogy from Michigan.

William died on 18 February, 1913 of bronchitis.32 By the 1920 census Mary, his widow had moved in with son Edward. He had married Genevieve Vietz and was living on Walnut Street in Walden, NY. Brother David is also now living with them, listed as a railroad laborer.33

Nellie has now married Edward Stoehr (1912), and Helen was born (1916). They are living on Coldenham Road, Walden, NY, where they will remain .34 Edward Carl Stoehr was born in 1921. (See the chapter on the Stoehr family)

By the 1930 census David was living on East Main Street (a house behind the Fowler Building) with his brother William R., who is still listed as a blacksmith. David is now listed as a laborer for a country club. Irene is also living with them. She died in 1936 of “hypostatic pneumonia, cerembral hemorrhage and chronic cardiac debilitation”35.

Children of William H. & Mary Irene (Crans) Owen:

Nellie Irene, Harriet (Hattie) M

back row,

from left to right:

Alfred, Dave, Edward and Frank

(Taken between 1950-1959)

David never married, nor apparently did William. Harriet (Hattie) married Harry Gale before 1919. They remained in Walden and had two daughters, Dorothy (who later married Mr. Grimes) and Irma (who later married Sid Slater). Cora moved to Ohio where she died in 1927. Edward and Genevieve had 5 sons, including Norman, a Walden Policeman. Frank and Mary Ella had one daughter, Marie Owen Wood, who taught in Washingtonville, NY. They owned a house on Pleasant Avenue in Walden.

Dave died 13 November,195936, so the above picture was taken before that time. When Alfred died, William and Frank were mentioned as survivors, but Edward was not, so Alfred's date of death was probably between 1960 and 1967.37 William died after Alfred. Edward died 13 January, 196038, Frank on 1 December, 196739. Nellie remained in the house on Coldenham Rd, Walden, growing wonderful vegetables, until her death in 1976.40 Hattie remained in her house in Walden, until shortly before her death in 1993 at age 100 at daughter Irma's house on East Main Street, Walden.


2.The National Library of Wales, Aberstwyth, Wales;Will of George Owen-Wiston-Doctor of Divinity-Colby - SD/1690/224

3.Hook, James William: The American Genealogist, Vol. 30, No. 3, July 1954, p. 129-142

4.York City Wills, 1760-1766. Database, 2008

5.Hook, James William: The American Genealogist, Vol. 30, No. 3, July 1954, p. 129-142

6.Coleman, Charles C.: Early Marriage Records of First Presbyterian Church at Goshen. Database: Orange County Gen Web;

7.1800 US Federal Population Schedule, Goshen, Orange, NY, p 360. Database:

8.MEC note collection from Orange County Genealogical Society, Goshen, NY

9.1820 US Federal Population Schedule, Goshen, Orange, NY, p 254. Database:

10.11.Elizabeth Horton notes from Orange County Genealogical Society (taken from will, Orange County, NY (Liber 0, p553)

11.1830 US Federal Population Schedule, Goshen, Orange, NY, p 280. Database:

12.Elizabeth Horton notes from Orange County Genealogical Society, Goshen, NY

13.1850 US Federal Population Schedule, Goshen, Orange, NY, p 357. Database:

14.Warwick Historical Papers, Historical Society of the Town of Warwick, Orange County, NY, OCGS, 1998, p221

1.Orange County Land Records, Goshen, NY: Liber , p

17.Orange County Land Records, Goshen, NY: Liber , p

18.Orange County Land Records, Goshen, NY: Liber , p

19NYS 1875 Census, Agricultural Statistics, Town of Montgomery, Orange, NY, p 61-64, from OCGS, Goshen, NY

20 1900 US Federal Population Schedule, Washingtonville, Town of Blooming Grove, Orange, NY, p 2B. Database:;

211875 NY State Population Census, Walden, Tn of Montgomery, Orange County, NY, 2nd ED, p 2 @OCGS, Goshen, NY

221880 US Federal Population Schedule, Walden, Tn Montgomery, Orange, NY, ED 24, p 40, 41. Database:,

23. 1900 US Federal Population Schedule, Tn Montgomery, Orange, NY. ED 28, p 16. Database: Http://

24.1900 US Population Schedule, Washingtonville, Blooming Grove Tnship, Orange, NY. Database:,

25NY State Death Certificate # 09270, 25 February, 1901

261910 US Population Schedule, Walden, Tn of Montgomery, Orange, NY. Database:

271910 US Population Schedule, Tn of Montgomery, Orange, NY. Database:,

281910 US Population Schedule, Walden, Tn of Montgomery, Orange, NY.Database:,

291910 US Population Schedule, Tn of Mamakating, Sullivan, NY. Database:,

301910 US Population Schedule, Tn of Crawford, Orange, NY. Database:,

311910 US Population Schedule, Tn of Hamptonburg, Orange, NY. Database:,

32NY State Death Certificate # 8773, 18 February, 1913

331920 US Population Schedule, Walden, Tn of Montgomery, Orange, NY, ED 134, p 3B. Database:,

341920 US Population Schedule, Walden, Tn of Montgomery, Orange, NY, ED 133, p 6B. Database:

35NY State death certificate # 33791, 26 May 1936

36Obituary clipping

37Obituary clipping

38Obituary clipping, funeral service brochure

39Obituary clipping, funeral service brochure

40Town of Cornwall, Orange, NY Death Certificate

1 comment:

DPReynolds said...

Hi Judi, my name is Dave Reynolds and I just read your very interesting account on the Owen family from Goshen, NY. Jasper Owen was my great grandfather on my father's side. I believe he moved to the Philadelphia area and married Ellen O'Brien from Brooklyn, NY. They were the parents of my grandmother Mary Owen. From what I understand from my family history, Jasper died of typhoid fever in Philadelphia in the 1890's. My great grandmother, his wife Ellen O'Brien, moved back to Brooklyn, NY and was a typhoid carrier. She died around 1914 and is buried in Holy Cross Cemetery in Brooklyn. This is all that I have on my grandmother's family. Hope this sheds a little light on Jasper Owen. Regards, Dave