Ezekiel Sankey, Sr. (1772 - 1813)

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About Ezekiel Sankey, Sr.

Birth: 1772 Death: Jun. 9, 1813 Lawrence County, Pennsylvania, USA

Ezekial was married to Jane Culbertson. They had ten children : William, Sarah, Ann, Jane, Joseph, Ezekial Jr., Theodocia, David, John Riddle and James.

SANKEY, Ezekiel Sr.

1877 History of Lawrence County - p. 123-124, 165 & 83

Ezekiel Sankey, father of Ezekiel and David Sankey, now residing in West New Castle, was perhaps the first permanent settler within the limits of the present township [Union Township]. His ancestors were from near Warrington, in Lancashire, England, from whence they emigrated to America and settled in the Kishacoquillas valley, now in Mifflin county, Pa., where his father died in 1794. He and his mother were appointed as executors of his father's will. Soon after the death of his father, he removed to a place called Potter's Mills, in Center county, and, after a short residence there, removed to the Chartiers valley, in Washington county, Pa., where he bought a farm and remained until 1800, when he removed to the farm at the mouth of "Sankey's run," since in Union township, Lawrence county. A few of the "red skins" still remained in the county, and their abandoned wigwams, made of poles and bark, were numerous. The territory of Union township was then in Mercer county, recently erected, and Mr. Sankey was the first sheriff of the county that was elected by the people--William Byers, the first sheriff, having been appointed by the governor in 1803.

Mr. Sankey was major of one of the Pennsylvania militia regiments, and it was on the occasion of one of its general musters on his farm, that a recruiting officer appeared in the Summer of 1812, and offered the regiment the privilege of volunteering in the service of the country in the war then just beginning between the United States and Great Britain. If the regiment accepted the proposition, they were to join General William Henry Harrison, then in command in the northwest territory, of which he was also governor.

The regiment declined enlisting in a body, and the offer was tendered to the companies, which also declined, and then individual enlistments were called for, when Major Sankey and a man named William Sheriff, of the same township, stepped forward and enlisted, being the only ones from that regiment. Major Sankey was appointed to a position in the commissary department of General Crook's brigade, which was organized at Pittsburgh. After a short visit to Erie, to learn what the British were contemplating in that quarter, he rejoined Crook's brigade at Mansfield, Ohio. He afterwards accompanied a portion of it as far West as the Rapids of the Maumee, where Harrison afterwards, in February, 1813, constructed the famous Fort Meigs. Here he remained during the Winter of 1812-13, and returned home in the Spring, and soon afterwards went to Mercer upon business, when his health, which had suffered severely by the rigor of the Winter and exposure in the camp, gave way, and after lying there for some time, he was brought home, where he lingered until the 13th day of July of that year, when he expired. Major Sankey raised a family of nine children, six sons and three daughters, all of whom are dead excepting his two youngest sons, Ezekiel and David, the latter of whom is the father of the co-worker with D. L. Moody--Ira D. Sankey--whose name and fame as a singer of Gospel hymns is world-wide.

Major Ezekiel Sankey, Sr., was born near Lewistown, Mifflin county, Pa., in the year 1772. His wife was Jane Cubbison, who was born in County Down, Ireland, in December, 1767. Mr. Sankey came to what is now Lawrence county about the year 1798, and became one of the first settlers at Western Reserve Harbor, in Union township. He was a farmer by occupation, and was an influential member of what is now known as the United Presbyterian church. He was the second Sheriff of Mercer county. He was a man of sterling integrity and great influence. He died July 9, 1813. His family numbered six sons and three daughters:

WILLIAM, born July 10, 1794; died November 27, 1860.

SARAH, born December 24, 1795; died December 25, 1876.

JOHN RIDDLE, born November 3, 1797; died March 29, 1869.

JOSEPH CUBBISON, born November 9, 1799; died November 24, 1870.

MARY ANN, born September 11, 1801; died August 12, 1874.

JAMES, born November 25, 1803; died August 12, 1861.

EZEKIEL, Jr., born October 3, 1804.

DAVID, born January 10, 1809.

JANE, born June 24, 1811; died September 14, 1871.

When Ezekiel Sankey died, the family consisted of ten--the widow and nine children. This was in 1813. After that there was no death in the family until 1857, a period of 44 years. To-day, of that family of ten, but two are left--Ezekiel and David, both residing practically in the city, both well up in years. George Pearson [son of John Pearson] at first settled on two hundred acres of his father's land. He soon afterwards purchased a tract containing one hundred acres of one McClaren, and soon after purchased another tract of the same amount of another McClaren. Subsequently, George Pearson left this section and lived in Charleston, South Carolina, for several years. After his return he married Miss Sarah Reynolds, daughter of James Reynolds, who was also a Quaker. It is customary among these people to publish the intentions of a couple wishing to marry, in the "Meeting," for some time previous to the marriage. In this instance there was no Quaker "Meeting" within many miles, and the only roads were bridle paths, and so the young couple made a virtue of necessity and employed Ezekiel Sankey, Esq., father of E. and D. Sankey, to perform the ceremony, without waiting for preliminaries, and the necessary arrangements were soon made and the "twain were made one flesh" at the house of Jesse Du Shane [Mrs. Du Shane was a Quaker], in New Castle. This was about the year 1810.

The Quakers in the eastern part of the State, hearing of this violation of their rules, sent a deputation to the new settlement to persuade them that they had done a great wrong, and must confess before "Meeting" and have the ceremony performed a second time, according to Quaker usage. But the young people concluded they had done nothing very seriously out of character, and so refused to comply. They were accordingly solemnly read out of the society.


Inscription: In his 41st Year


Note: War of 1812 Medallion Burial:

Shenango U. P. Church Cemetery 

New Castle Lawrence County Pennsylvania, USA

Edit Virtual Cemetery info [?] 
Created by: Nic

Record added: Aug 07, 2004 Find A Grave Memorial# 9282158

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