Miscellaneous Pennsylvania Records

William Gore ELDER was the first physician to locate in Somerset Co, PA, about 1797. He married Sunday May 8, 1800, to Magdalena ARMSTRONG, daughter of John ARMSTRONG Sr., a stone mason.
William Gore ELDER died in 1820 and his estate file (Somerset County 1820-#8) shows the following family: Widow: Magdalena, administrator; Children: Anne, m Dr. John B. PYTHIAN; William E. (of further mention); Clifford (settled Johnstown, PA); John Robinson; Samuel Elyzar; and Joseph Henderson ELDER. [The last three children were minors at father's death. Conrad SHULTZ was named guardian.]

The following references are from various issues of the Laurel Messenger, published by the Historical and Genealogical Society of Somerset County, PA:

August 1970 -- Extracts from "The Herald" (7 Sep 1830 issue): Clifford ELDER married Rosanna BENFORD 2 Sep 1830.

November 1974 -- Somerset County marriages: May 8, 1800 William G. ELDER, Doctor of physic and Magdaline ARMSTRONG, Somerset Town. Witnesses: John ARMSTRONG, Joseph ARMSTRONG, James ARMSTRONG.

May 1980 -- Somerset County estates (1823 #12): William ELDER. Admrs. bond filed June 3, 1823. Admr. John ELDER. Bondsmen: Andrew STEWARD and George PARKER.

November 1963 -- William E. ELDER, b 23 Jul 1806 in Somerset County, d 5 Apr 1885 in Philadelphia. He m 24 Dec 1833 Sara MACLEAN. "At 20 years of age, he began the study of medicine under Dr. DEANE, Chambersburg; later he became assistant to Dr. WHITESIDE of Juniata County, meanwhile attending Jefferson Medical College in Philadelphia. In 1833 he became a practicing physician in Oakland Mills, Juniata County, Pennsylvania. Dr. ELDER moved to Pittsburgh in 1838, and the following year was elected Recorder of Deeds of Allegheny County on the Whig party ticket.…" Later residences included: Bedford Co, PA; Washington, DC; and Philadelphia. [Son of the William Gore Elder above]

John ELDER, Somerset County, PA, Estate 1828 #17 -- will written 15 May 1828; an addendum was written 2 June 1828 naming his brother, Thomas ELDER as guardian of his son William (only child mentioned); proved 12 June 1828; administrator was wife Magdalene ELDER. Witnesses included: John WILL, Jacob ELYSNER (sp?), and Ann ELDER. William Gore Elder

Source: Laurel Messenger, Nov. 1974 page 3 issue: Early Somerset County marriages -- May 8, 1800 -- William G. Elder, Doctor of Physic and Magdaline Armstrong, Somerset Town. Witnesses -- John Armstrong, Joseph Armstrong, James Armstrong. Laurel Messenger, Aug 1979, page 5 issue: 1820 Somerset County Estates: Number 8 of 1820 -- William Gore Elder, Somerset Twp. Admrs. bond filed July 29, 1820. Magdalen Elder, admr. Bondsmen, Samuel Elder and John Elder. ch.: Clifford, Anne marroed John B. Phythion, William, John Robison Elder, Samuel, Eliza, Joseph Henderson Elder, last three in their minority. Est. $9,339.47. Many papers in file.
Elders of Somerset County, Pennsylvania

From an article that appeared in the "Laurel Messenger", Nov. 1963 issue, published by the Historical and Genealogical Society of Somerset County [PA]: Dr. William E. Elder Qualifies As a "Frosty son of Thunder" -- The guest speaker at the fourth anniversary dinner meeting of the society suggests Dr. William E. Elder as one native of Somerset who qualifies to be a typical Frosty Son of Thunder. Born 23 Jul 1806 in Somerset, died 5 Apr 1885 in Philadelphia, Dr. Elder was thus named "Mr. Somerset."


John Elder -- Pension Record #S23616, Pennsylvania Line. Applied 5 Jun 1833 Beaver Co, VA [the book says VA here but I believe it should have stated PA -- DYL] aged 78, a resident of North Beaver Twp. Soldier was born in 1755 in Cumberland Co, PA and lived there at enlistment. In 1802 he moved to Beaver Co, PA.

John Elder -- Mary, Pension Record #W24117, Pennsylvania Line. Soldier was a son of Thomas Elder and was born in 1762 in Chester Co, PA and lived in White Deer Valley in Northumberland (later Union) Co, PA, at enlistment. It stated after his service soldier went to Chester Co, PA until the close of the Rev. War then returned to Northumberland Co (Union Co) and about 1814 he moved to Centre Co, PA and he applied there 29 Apr 1834. He died 19 Jan 1835 at Salona in Centre Co, PA. He married Mary "Polly" (or Molly) Dougherty on 7 Nov 1793 at soldier's father Thomas Elder's home in Whitedeer twp, PA. She was born Nov 1766 and died 30 or 31 Dec 1848. Children listed were: Margaritt or Peggy born 7 Jul 1794 and she married a Thompson & in 1839 she was living in Holmes Co, OH, James born 22 Nov 1795, John born 14 Apr 1797, Thomas born 20 Oct 1798, one name torn off record was born 13 Jan 1804, Robert born 2 Nov 1807, William no birth date, Mary no birth date but she married a John Wilson, Ann no birth date but she married a George Walters and the oldest child shown was Joshua born 18 Mar 1793 the name of his mother wasn't given. The widow died leaving 5 children: Margaret Thompson, James Elder, Ann Walters or Waltors, William Elder & Mary Wilson. The son, James Elder, made application 23 Feb 1852 at Clearfield Co, PA and was a resident of Bell Twp, PA.


These extracted records, from the "Pittsburgh Post Gazette" (1786-1910), were found (along with an index) on microfilm at the main Carnegie Library in Pittsburgh , PA. [note: the dates prior to the obituary notice are the date of the newpaper, not the date of death]

January 31, 1900 -- COL. SAMUEL ELDER: "The Death Roll" Col. Samuel Elder: Col. Samuel Elder, one of the oldest and best known of the pioneer citizens of Western Pennsylvania, died at 10 o'clock yesterday morning at his home on his farm near Ligonier, Pa., in his 95th year. He was in robust health throughout his life until last Wednesday, when he became a victim of the grip. At noon on Sunday he had a stroke of paralysis, and from then he began to sink rapidly, although he remained conscious until he passed away. Col. Elder was born at Path Valley, near Carlisle Pa. in 1805. He was a son of a distinguished military man and a grandson of Rev. John Elder, who was known as the "Fighting Parson," because of his aggressiveness for the right for peace, whether obtained by force or diplomacy. The latter's son John Elder, who was a brother of the deceased's father was the founder of Harrisburg, the state capital. While yet a very young man, Col. Elder embarked in the general store business in Somerset County. Here he lived many years. He was the first clerk of the orphan's court of Somerset County, and the register and recorder of that county to be elected by the people. For a while he was also a prothonotary of Somerset County. Long before the advent of the railroad Col. Elder and a number of others organized a stage coach line from Pittsburgh to Philadelphia. Here he became quite wealthy. He foresaw the coming of the railroad and sold out his interest and invested his wealth in a stage coach line from Independence Mo., to Salt Lake City. This venture was a failure and he lost nearly all he had made in Pennsylvania. He then retired and for many years lived on his large farm at Brinton Station. For the past 20 years he had been living on his farm near Ligonier, Westmoreland County. The deceased was a remarkable man in many ways. He was always an admirer of beautiful horses, and in 1826 sold one of his finest horses to Lafayette, the great French-American patriot, who was visiting in the United States at the time. He cast his first vote for Jefferson (sic) in 1828 and since then always voted the Whig and then the Republican ticket. Religiously, he was a Presbyterian. Before his death he was probably the oldest reader of the Commercial Gazette, which he has read daily since childhood. Col. Elder was married in December, 1833, to Margaret Anna Bell, a descendant of a pioneer family. She is still living and rapidly approaching the 90th year of her age. He is surrounded (sic) by nine children, as follows, Mrs. W. W. Patrick, Mrs. F. C. Craighead and John B. Elder of Pittsburgh; Mrs. R. C. Holliday, Baltimore Md, Mrs. __(initial illegible) H. Hudson, Maysville, Cal., E. W. Elder, Reddin, Cal.; Mrs. Dr. A. V. Miller, Ligonier, and Samuel Elder Jr., and Josephine at home. The funeral will be held on Thursday at 2 p.m., at Ligonier.

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