All things history and genealogy.

All things history and genealogy.

Tag: census

Transcription: Biography of Capt. George Meek and Rachel Meek.

Transcription: Biography of Capt. George Meek and Rachel Meek.


Capt. George MEEK, Mark’s 6th great grandfather, was born in 1741 in Maryland to Robert and Elizabeth (Alexander) MEEK. He married Rachel HERRON (b. 1749; d. after 1810) daughter of David and Elizabeth HERRON, in 1770.

Marriage Record of George and Rachel Meek
Record of the marriage of Rachel Herron to George Meek in the Herron family genealogy recorded in the book “Notes and Queries Historical and Genealogical”; Vol. XVII; page 95.

George spent his formative years in Maryland. It is likely he moved to Centre County, Pennsylvania upon his marriage to Rachel.

George served with the 5th Pennsylvania Battalion under Capt. Thomas Alexander in the Revolutionary War between 1778 and 1781.

In an earlier article, I posted the full transcription of a Watchman Article of May 1, 1931 about George MEEK.

It is recorded that George took up a 1,000 acre tract of land on January 21, 1790, some of which remained with his family for generations. It is reported that the first surveys in Ferguson Township were made in 1766-1767, including tracts west of Pine Grove Mills and extending west to the Ross Farm, as well as tracts formerly belonging to General Patton. Another surveying party in 1784 camped at Stewart’s in Warrior’s Mark area on their way to Moshannon and Clearfield. On that trip, “George MEEK killed one large buck, pretty fat, not unwelcome news to the company.” In 1790, the George MEEK who killed the deer previously purchased a tract of land in Ferguson Township, Centre County.

Capt. George Meek died January 10,1802 and was buried after January 10, 1801 in the mountain gap west of Pine Grove Mills. At the time, this tract of land was used for lumbering. It is unknown whether his wife Rachel was also buried there. All trace of the grave has disappeared over the intervening years.

Meek, George - Revolutionary War Plaque
Meek, George – Revolutionary War Plaque
Meek, George - Revolutionary War Plaque
Meek, George – Revolutionary War Plaque

George Meek’s will written and dated November 3, 1801 in Ferguson Township, Centre County, Pennsylvania, was probated January 19, 1802, also in Ferguson Township.

Will Abstract of George Meek
Abstract of the Will of George Meek.

Transcription of the Abstract of George’s Will

Page 12, GEORGE MEEK, Ferguson Twp., 11/3/1801-1/19/1802, wife Rachel, friend Jonathan Wales, eldest son Robert, son William, David, John. Youngest Dr. Sarah not 21, Dtr. Mary Steelly, Dtr. Isabella, Dtr. Jean. Ex: Wife, & Thomas Ferguson. Witness: Thomas Ferguson, Joseph Diven, John Barron.

[Wills  of Centre County, Pennsylvania, by Ira F. Fravel, Col. U.S. Army, published 1/19/1939, re-copied December, 1967 by Mary Belle Lontz.]

The marriage of Capt. George MEEK and Rachel HERRON produced eight children and they were:

  1. Robert MEEK was born about 1765 and married sometime prior to 1801. His spouse is unknown.
  2. Mary MEEK (Mark’s 5th great grandmother) was born January 28, 1767, died January 25, 1850 in Fountain County, Indiana and was buried at Bend Cemetery, Fountain County. Sometime prior to 1830, she married Gabriel Stehle, son of Ulrich and Anna Stehle. Although George Meek’s will definitely records her as having been this Mary Meek, there was some debate that her last name was Stuart, perhaps resulting from a previous marriage, if indeed it is true.
  3. William Jerome MEEK was born in 1773 in Huntingdon County, Pennsylvania and died in 1806 in Huntingdon County. He was married prior to 1800 near McConnellstown, Huntingdon County to Elizabeth Breckenridge.
  4. David MEEK, born about 1774, married Polly Bailey. (Davie moved with his brother John to Clarion County, Pennsylvania, where their father owned some land.)
  5. John MEEK ; born 1775. John later moved to Clarion County, Pennsylvania with his brother David, and later moved down the Ohio River, settling somewhere in Ohio.
  6. Isabella MEEK was born in about 1779 and married Abel Benton.
  7. Jean MEEK’s birth place is unknown, but she did die in 1859.
  8. Sarah MEEK, born in about 1783, later married Capt. Thomas Holt.


  1. Some Early Families of Centre County, Pennsylvania (Mainly from Half Moon, Patton, Ferguson and College Townships); Glenn (1988); Richard C. Glenn; 916-428-7238, Sacramento, CA 95823-7736, East Parkway; Assembled 1980-1988.
  2. There’s Power in the Blood: Celebrating the 200th Anniversary of Gray’s United Methodist Church, State College District, Nov 12, 1989; Gray’s United Methodist Church, Rte 550 S of Rte 322, R.D. Port Matilda, PA 16870.
  3. Linn’s History of Centre and Clinton Counties, Pennsylvania; Linn, John Blair; 1883..
  4. Columbia County Pennsylvania Will Book C, database, Rootsweb ( accessed).
  5. Newtownship, Cumberland County, Pennsylvania, Cumberland County, PA Will Book C pages 83 & 84 Will of David Herron of Newtownship Made 17 February 1778, ; ,|pgNum.
  6. Meek, George – Wills of Centre County, Pennsylvania: ; ,
  7. Meek George and Herron, Rachel and Marriage Record, “Notes and Queries Historical and Genealogical,” database.
  8. Notes and Queries – XVII; page 95, (: Internet 14 November 2013), .
  9. , U.S., Sons of the American Revolution Membership Applications,1889-1970 (Name: Name:
  10. Operations, Inc.; Location: Provo, UT, USA; Date:2011, Database online.
  11. Columbia County Pennsylvania Will Book C, database, Rootsweb a messr.htm: accessed ).
  12. Meek, Rachel;1810 US Census; Ferguson, Centre, Pennsylvania; Roll: 46; Page: 76; Image: 0193672; Family History Library Film: 00256, 00256; (
  13. “Find A Grave Index,” database, Find A Grave, Find A Grave : Internet 4 September 2013), .
  14. “US, Federal Census Mortality Schedules Index, 1850-1880, “database,
  15. Bend Cemetery, Covington, Fountain, Indiana, United States.


The image above links directly to the original document. You can access sources, data, images and documents for these and other individuals, by clicking on the name link, or searching the Blythe Genealogy database site using the surname search link and the ‘All Media‘ search link in the left sidebar.

It is recommended to search using both methods as the results can differ greatly due to a glitch in the software that doesn’t connect all images from the bio.

All data for this and numerous others on this site is available for free access and download.


#captgeorgemeek #rachelmeek #rachelheron

Tragic gas poisoning deaths of Daniel and Isabella McDougall.


I have found myself fascinated by the stories of the trials, tribulations and tragedies of our ancestors, and this story about the deaths by gas poisoning of Daniel and Isabella McDougall tragically caused by their daughter, Agnes is no exception.


Story of Daniel and Isabella McDougall.
Fitchburg Daily Sentinal article of November 21, 1907 – deaths by gas poisoning. Story of Daniel and Isabella McDougall.

Sometimes I wonder if I was born too late as my disability, though hidden from others, is completely disabling to me and for the most part is attributable to dealing with highly stressful work, home, family and personal circumstances.

I’ve always thought of earlier times before the onset of modern technology as being quieter and more peaceful.

Then I read a story like the one I’m about to tell you and realize there are definitely some advantages to living in our own time. No wonder we live such long lives compared to theirs.

Then I think about the risks of the industry, technology and society of our day and realize that we live with risks as well, just not the same ones.

This story is about the family of a 19 year old girl, Sara Agnes (Agnes) McDougall, who was living at an inn / boarding house in the Boston area in Cambridge, Massachusetts with her parents, Daniel Martin (b. 18 Aug 1862 in PEI, Canada) and Elizabeth “Isabella” (Hume) McDougall (b. about 1869, also in PEI, Canada), while working in the area.

Daniel had been a schoolteacher and had lived in Morrell, PEI, teaching at the Church Street School until 1906.

On the fateful night of November 20, 1907, the coin operated gas lights had burned out and Daniel and Isabella McDougall retired to sleep, leaving the gas switch in the ‘on’ position. With these lights, once the gas ran out, it was necessary to insert another quarter to restore the flow of gas to the light.

Agnes returned home from a party and promptly inserted a quarter to light the room as she prepared to retire for the night. Once finished, she turned off the light, but still having time left on the meter, the gas continued to flow into her parents’ room as they slept. Daniel and Isabella died of gas poisoning.

The November 21, 1907 edition of the Fitchburg Daily Sentinel of Fitchburg, Massachusetts printed an account of the deaths as follows:


Cambridge, Mass., Nov. 21 — Mr. and Mrs. Daniel McDougall of 25 Market Street are dead, and their three children left orphans, as a result of the careless use of a quarter-in-the-slot gas machine at their home. Their daughter, Agnes McDougall, the unfortunate cause of the accident, has been almost prostrated since it occurred.

The bodies of Daniel and Isabella McDougall were returned to PEI by train from Cambridge, Massachusetts.

As recounted by family, Duncan MacDougall, Daniel’s brother, brought them home for burial in the Church of Scotland cemetary in Bangor, PEI. Duncan’s daughter, Violet, stated that the wake was held in Cambridge. Their daughter, Agnes was completely distraught, “wringing her hands and saying over and over, ‘Oh my goodness, I’ve murdered my parents.'”

Family members never knew Agnes had caused the tragedy until a newspaper article was found in 1996.


  1. “Couple Killed By Gas”; Fitchburg Daily Sentinel; Fitchburg, Cambridge, Massachusetts; November 21, 1907. (See above.)
  2. “Massachusetts, Death Records, 1841-1915,” database, ” target=”_blank” rel=”nofollow”> . (See below.)
  3. 1881 Census, Kings, Prince Edward Island, district Lot 61, Kings, Prince Edward Island; Roll: C_13164; Page: 55; Family No: 222, Page: 55, House 216; Family 222, Hume ; digital, . (See below.)
  4. 1891 Canadian Census, Lot 40, Kings, Prince Edward Island, Roll: T-6382; Family No: 2, district 133, Page: 1, Household: 2, McDougall ; digital image, ” target=”_blank” rel=”nofollow”> . (See below.)
McDougall, Isabella (Hume); Massachusetts Death Records, deaths by gas poisoning.
Massachusetts Death Records, deaths by gas poisoning.


1881 Canadian Census showing Isabella Hume.
1881 Canadian Census showing Isabella Hume.