Compiled by George J. Farris, 2015
This is a brief summary regarding my Creighton ancestors and their families.
Immigration of the Hewitt Family
In 1792 an extended family arrived in the United States on the Ship Minerva from Northern Ireland (Ulster), probably originating in County Down. The family centered on a widow Hewitt whose name is unknown. The extended family included the mother, two Hewitt sons, John and James, and four daughters, Margaret, Nancy, Mary Ann, and Catherine. A fifth Hewitt daughter, Francis, and a son, William, were apparently married and remained in Ireland. Catherine Hewitt married Matthew Mayes, Nancy Hewitt married James Hamilton, and Mary Ann Hewitt married John Beatty and the group of settlers included these families. Also, the daughter Margaret was married at the time the extended family left Ireland and the group also included her husband, John Creighton, and three of their children, John, James, and Elizabeth Creighton. Another daughter, Anne Creighton, was born during the voyage on the Minerva before their arrival and another son, Robert Creighton, was born about two years later in Pennsylvania. John and Margaret Hewitt Creighton were my gr.gr.gr.grandparents.
The Hewitt/Creighton group initially settled in what was then part of Westmoreland County Pennsylvania and now in Armstrong County near current day Freeport near the confluence of the Allegheny and Kiskiminetas Rivers. Over the next 25 years, some of these related families lived near McKeesport, PA and later some of the John Creighton family lived in the far western part of Allegheny County, southwest of Pittsburgh.
After the state of Ohio was formed in 1803, some of these interrelated people were among the early permanent Ohio settlers. In 1807, John Creighton, Jr. along with the two Hewitt brothers, John and James, and a few others explored the area along the Sandy River in what was then Stark County, Ohio. They found an area for settlement, cleared some land and raised a crop of corn. In the Fall they harvested and stored the corn and planted a crop of winter wheat and then returned to the area near McKeesport, Pennsylvania. Then in the Spring of 1808 they formed a group of settlers to return to Ohio and establish a permanent settlement. James Hewitt and his wife Elizabeth were probably the first of this group to develop a homestead and enter a quarter section of land at the land office in Steubenville. In July of 1812 James and Elizabeth, his wife, sold a 1/2 interest in the land to his brother John Hewitt and they jointly developed the farm land. However, John Hewitt died just a few years later in 1817. Over the next several years, most of the members of the extended Hewitt/Creighton families settled in that same area, including John and Margaret Creighton and their son James and his family in about 1813. The Patent Deed for the land that John and James Creighton jointly entered in Stark Co. Ohio (the SE-1/4 of section 9 of Sandy Township) is dated in July 1817 and lists both as residents of Allegheny County, PA at the time of the original land entry in 1813.
John & Margaret Hewitt Creighton Family
John and Margaret had five known children – John, Jr., James, Elizabeth, Anne, and Robert. John Creighton, Jr. was one of the early settlers in Stark County in 1808. He was married to two of the daughters of Peter Mottice successively, Margaret in 1816 and, after she died in 1818, Abigail in 1821. John Jr. died in December, 1841; Abigail died in 1858. Robert Creighton was married in Stark County but returned to Westmoreland County Pennsylvania within a few years. Elizabeth Creighton was married in PA to Samuel Taylor before moving to Stark County Ohio briefly. Taylor’s land entry record is dated in 1817 and lists him as a resident of Washington Co. PA. By the time in March 1821 that Samuel and Elizabeth sold their land in Stark Co. to James and Anne Creighton they were listed as residents of Muskingum Co. OH. Anne Creighton was born aboard the ship Minerva, on which they traveled in 1792. Anne's marriage in 1816 resulted in some confusion for later Creighton researchers because she married another James Creighton who was not related..
The Two James Creighton Families
These two families lived on adjacent land in section 9 of Sandy Township. The tax records and other references refer to them as James Creighton 1 (son of John & Margaret) and James Creighton 2 (son of the unrelated Patrick & Elinor Creighton). But James 2 was married to Anne Creighton, daughter of John & Margaret. So the two James Creightons were brothers-in-law. James 1 was co-owner of the Creighton farm from the beginning – but did not move to Ohio from PA until about 1813. James 2 and Anne, daughter of John & Margaret, lived on the other half of the original Creighton farm – and John & Margaret lived with them until their deaths in 1834 and 1832. James 2 also died in 1834. Anne lived much longer than James and died in 1873. This family also had a number of descendants who lived in the area for many years. Later in the 1800s some of their descendants, along with several of the children of James 1 and Elizabeth lived in Warren County, Iowa.
John Creighton wrote his will in 1830 and died in1834. Margaret Hewitt Creighton died about 1832. There are no burial records regarding them and they are most probably buried in the lost Creighton-Hewitt Cemetery that was located on the original James Hewitt land a mile east of Waynesburg, OH.
James Creighton (my gr.gr.grandfather)
First Wife of James Creighton – and Their Children
The first wife of my gr.gr.grandfather James Creighton was Elizabeth (Betsy) Savage. She was the daughter of Henry Savage and Jane Robinson and was born about 1797 at the Savage family farm near McDonald and Noblestown in what is now North Fayette Township, Allegheny County, Pennsylvania. James Creighton and Betsy Savage were said to have been married in Brooke County, VA (now WV). I have not yet found a marriage record to corroborate that. At its nearest point, Brooke County is less than 25 miles from Noblestown. At the time of the entry for their land in Stark County, Ohio in 1813, both James, and his father, John Creighton, were listed as residents of Allegheny County, PA. So, I believe that James lived in that part of far western PA at the time of his first marriage. The Savage Farm is about 2 miles NW of Noblestown and just north of present day McDonald PA and very near the Allegheny/Washington County line.
James and Betsy had five children before her death in Stark County, Ohio in about 1823. They were Margaret Ann, Eliza Jane, Henry S., Nancy R., and Susan W.
Margaret Ann Creighton married James Charlton Guiney in 1836 and they lived in Rose Township in what is now Carroll County. James and Margaret Ann both died quite young in the 1840s. They had two children who later lived with another Guiney family in that area.
Susan W. Creighton married William S. Evans and they lived in Branch County, MI. They had six children before her death in 1857. One of their sons was John Albert Evans who later lived with his aunt Nancy R. Creighton in PA while a student, teacher and law student. He was later a Judge in Pittsburgh.
Henry Stephen Creighton married Elizabeth Farber Williams in Stark County and was a school teacher there and in Edgar County, IL. He then became the Greene County, MO Superintendent of Schools. Later he co-owned a grist mill with his nephew John B. Glass in Greene County. He died in 1900.
Eliza Jane Creighton was never married. She was a school teacher and lived with her sister Nancy in Allegheny City, PA most of the time. Later she lived with her half-sister Catherine Curfman in Warren County, IA and died there in 1884.
Nancy R. Creighton was never married. She was a school teacher in OH and in Allegheny City, PA where she lived for most of her life. (Allegheny City was later incorporated into the city of Pittsburgh.) Her sister Eliza Jane lived with her most of the time – and later Nancy’s nephew, John Albert Evans, son of Susan W. Creighton Evans, lived with her for many years. Nancy died at the United Presbyterian Home for the Aged in Wilkinsburg, PA in 1897.
Elizabeth Seidel Baker Creighton (my gr.gr.grandmother)
Little is known about her early life. We are not even certain of her maiden name. Her son James Hewitt Creighton stated that her name was Seidel and that she was born in Butler County, PA in 1802. However, there were no Seidel families in that county at that time as far as we know. She first married John A. Baker, probably in Westmoreland County, PA, in about 1821. This Baker family appears to have originally lived in MD. John and Elizabeth, along with other Baker families, moved to Stark County, OH shortly after their marriage. They had one daughter, Sarah Baker, born in Stark County in 1823. John Baker died in Stark County in February, 1824.
Sarah Baker Glass Greves Hull, daughter of Elizabeth and John Baker, was first married to John Glass in Stark County in 1840. They had three children before John Glass died in 1845. Sarah then married John H. Greves and they had at least two children before he died in 1864. In 1871 Sarah married Martin L. Hull and lived in Cleveland, OH until about 1880 when they were divorced. She then lived in Greene County, MO with her sons until her death in 1895. Sarah's sons, John Baker Glass, Albert Martin Glass, and James Ishmael Greves all were closely associated with the Creighton family. They lived in Stark Co. OH and Greene Co. MO.
James and Elizabeth Creighton and their Children
James and Elizabeth were married in Stark Co. OH on October 18, 1825. They lived on the Creighton farm in section 9 of Sandy Township until James was no longer able to farm, then lived in the town of Waynesburg until his death on April 28, 1866. Elizabeth continued to live there until 1869 when she moved to Stark County, IL to live with the family of her daughter Catherine Curfman. She later moved with them to Warren County, IA where she died on January 11, 1882. Her body was returned to Waynesburg, OH where she and James are buried. They had a total of 10 children, two of whom died in infancy and whose names are not known. The other children were:
John B. Creighton was born in 1827 and married Francis Augusta Brownson in 1856 in Stark Co. OH. He was teacher and later a farmer there and later in Warren County, IA. They had five children, one of whom was Lilly (Katherine Lilly). I have a letter that Lilly wrote to her uncle Robert Creighton shortly after John died February 26, 1897.
Catherine Hewitt Creighton was born in 1828 and married Joseph B. Curfman in Stark Co. OH in 1853. “Joe” was a farmer and they lived near West Jersey in Stark Co. IL and later near Milo in Warren Co. IA. Catherine died there on July 9, 1881. They had four children.
James Hewitt Creighton was born in 1832 and married Laura C. Hudson in Springfield, MO in 1868. James was a school teacher and an attorney, having studied law at Mount Union College in OH. During the Civil War he was stationed in Springfield, MO with rank of Colonel and later was Prosecuting Attorney for the 14th Judicial District of MO and then Mayor of Springfield. Laura was Postmistress for Lebanon MO. They then moved to Warren County, IA where he formed a law partnership with his brother Hugh. They later moved to Des Moines where Laura was the State Librarian for Iowa and then to Phoenix AZ where James and Laura lived with the family of their daughter Abilena. He died there on January 31, 1912. They had five children, two of whom were prominent in Phoenix: James Edwin (“Ned”) who owned the Phoenix newspaper and founded the Arizona News Service and Abilena Creighton Christy who was a classical pianist having studied music in Paris, Florence, and New York and was the founder of the Arizona School of Music.
Robert Murray Creighton (my gr.grandfather) was born in 1835 and married Nancy Jane McIlravy in Tuscarawas County OH on September 13, 1866. He was a farmer and lived with the family of his sister Catherine Curfman in Stark Co. IL for several years before enlisting in the 112th IL Infantry in the Civil War. After the war he returned to Stark Co. OH for a short time before marrying Nancy. They then moved to Henry County IL near Galva where he was a farm laborer- then to Knox County, IL where he farmed until 1881 when they moved to Iowa. Nancy's brother, David McIlravy had moved to Adams County, IA in 1880 and Robert & Nancy and their family bought land from David there near what was then the village of Carl. They remained in Adams County for the rest of their lives. Robert died there on April 13, 1912. Robert and Nancy had four children, one of whom died in infancy. The others were Elizabeth Ellen Creighton Speed, Ida Katie Jane Creighton Brown, and William Murray Creighton (my grandfather).
Abigail Creighton was born in1837 and never married. She was a school teacher in Stark County, OH and died at the age of 28 on January 28, 1866.
Hugh R. Creighton was born in 1838 and never married. He studied law at Mount Union College and the Albany School of Law in NY. After serving in the Civil War in both an Illinois and an Arkansas regiment he practiced law in Springfield MO where he was a County Attorney for several years. He then formed a law practice with his brother James in Warren Co. IA in 1872. Later he managed a loan office in Des Moines before moving to Spokane, Washington. He was an attorney there but also an investor in mining ventures in Idaho. He died in Spokane on February 12, 1912.
William McKean Creighton was born in 1840 and never married. He lived for a few years with the family of his sister Catherine Curfman in Stark Co. IL before enlisting in the 112th IL Infantry. While stationed in KY he developed a case of acute peritonitis and died at Lexington, KY on February 14, 1863. He is buried in the Lexington National Cemetery.
Winfield Scott Creighton was born in 1843 and married Rachel Elizabeth Ruby in Knox County, IL on December 19,1867. Rachel (known as “Lizzie”) had been adopted at age five by the Hugh McIlravy family and grew up as a sister to Nancy Jane McIlravy Creighton, wife of Win's brother Robert. Winfield was a farmer in Knox Co. IL and then migrated to the Ash Grove area in Greene Co. MO were he farmed for several years. After a few years farming in Mitchell Co. KS he moved to Adair Co. IA where he lived the rest of his life. He died there on September 11, 1924. He and “Lizzie” had ten children