John Ryland and Susanna Kissinger

This post goes from 1755 to 1814 and covers Pennsylvania, the only state where they lived. A call for a Ryland family Bible is mentioned in this post.

Here are the Ryland links in the generational chain, at a glance:

Paul → JOHN → William Sr. → William Jr. m. (1) Sarah Baird and (2) Hannah Jane VickersFloyd (Frank) Rucker Ryland

Her family line goes as follows:

Jacob KissingerMichael → SUSANNAH m. JOHN RYLAND → see the chain, above

And like this too:

Jacob RolandMaria Catherina m. Michael KissingerSUSANNAH m. JOHN RYLAND → see first chain, above

THE BASICS

Per a Bible record, he was born on May 20, 1755, in Berks County, PA. When he was twenty-six years old, he married Susanna Kissinger on September 1, 1781, in Bern Township, Berks County; then he may have married a second wife Kate (last name unknown so far), after 1791 and before 1793. John died before February 9, 1814, in Huntingdon County, PA.

Spelling Variations: Reyland, Reylands, Rylands, Rilands, Reiland, Reilands,

He enlisted during the Revolutionary War on April 1, 1778. He was a Private and a Wagon Master. For one period, he served in the same Inactive Duty Militia as his father Paul (see Item 52, below and Item 55 in Paul’s post). John’s service lasted until November 3, 1783. At his decease, the Letters of Administration appoint his son William on February 9, 1814, to handle his father’s estate, and the court confirms his administrative duties on April 1, 1815. The letters were issued in Huntingdon County, Pennsylvania; his Inventory and Appraisement of his goods and property was taken in Huntingdon County. In my experience, it did not take all that long for probate to be initiated, so we can safely conclude that John died in very late January, but most likely in very early February, before the 9th.

John Ryland has been enrolled as a Patriot at the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR). His Patriot number is:

A206184

For his accomplishments during the War of Independence, scroll down to the section “Stage Two: Military Service.”

Susanna Kissinger

She was born in Bern Township, Berks County, PA, date so far unknown. She may have died a year or two after her father Michael Kissinger did; his will was proven on February 12, 1791.

More about her

Her father was Michael Kissinger, and her mother was Mary Roland (or Ruland). Interestingly, in the final account of his estate, dated October 31, 1791, in Bern Township, Berks County. Susanna’s middle name is Margret. William Ryland and James Ryland are named in Michael’s estate account. Surely they are her brothers-in-law, for they were in Berks County at the right time (please see first the Michael Kissinger post).

Spelling variations: Susannah, Kiesinger.

More on John’s (Supposed) Second Marriage to Kate

Researcher Phyllis J. Hughes says Kate’s name surfaced at a Riley [Ryland] family reunion in 1900, which was reported in a newspaper. She writes in an email (July 20, 2008):

The newspaper was right after a family reunion which the Rileys used to have every year back in IL. A genealogy of the family was presented at the reunion and then published in the newspaper. A number of these people present were among my Paul Ryland’s children. They were talking about their grandfather and grandmother, John and Kate.

I’m assuming that they knew their names of their grandparents—most people do. All of what was in the genealogy is pretty well substantiated by more original sources. Susannah and Kate may be the same person, but I doubt that she is. Your William was not given as a child in this genealogy, which leads me to think that he and the other children had different mothers. This is not proof but it’s all that I have and it’s what I’m accepting at the present time. Also I can more or less prove that William was either a half-brother (or brother), apart from this genealogy.

I’ll have to go back and examine dates. I do know that the last three children were born after 1791. So that would allow for Susanna to have died before these children were born. I haven’t worked on the Rylands and Rileys for a very long time.

Transcription ends.

Here is a link to a transcription of the newspaper describing the reunion in 1900 and having write-ups on Rachel, Paul, and John:

http://archiver.rootsweb.ancestry.com/th/read/RYLAND/2002-07/1026772456

I’m gradually accepting the claim that John married a Kate, for these reasons:

  1. The reunion attendees resisted the strong temptation to turn John into a second-generation Englishman. They said, accurately, he was German.
  2. As noted in the above excerpt, people remember their grandparents, and one female appears in the 1820 Census, as 45+ and living with her son William, so she outlived her husband John and moved out to Ohio. This move and long life keeps her memory fresh in her descendants’ minds.
  3. The reunion attendees say John and Kate had a daughter named Rachel and son John, and the census records and probate confirm their lives. Of course, since the reunion was all about Paul Ryland’s / Riley’s descendants, they said John Jr. was still another son of John and Kate. The reunion attendees’ memories were accurate about Rachel and John Jr.
  4. They say John died in Natchez, Mississippi and moved there at the outbreak of the Civil War in 1861. This has all the oddity about it that makes it accurate. Close things and events and people, like neighbors, ensure an accurate memory, but so do odd things. They strike the memory and stick. It is certainly odd that John moved and died down south. The Mississippi River was a main waterway, and John could have traveled down directly from Illinois or taken the Ohio River, which feeds into it.
  5. The reunion attendees do not mention (our) William, who was the son of John and Susanna, because the attendees were focused on the offspring of John and Kate. So their silence on William also indirectly confirms their accurate memory. But we must be careful about the fifth and sixth reasons, for arguments from silence are weak, but they do dovetail nicely with the first four reasons.

The problem is that the reunion was silent about John’s and Susanna’s first child Magdalena. Maybe her untimely death (if that happened early) ensured that she did not make it into family tradition, but this is speculation.

All in all, the memories of the reunion attendees were accurate, so there’s a strong probability that John indeed married a Kate.

But one thing is certain: John’s marriage to Susanna is legally proven evidence, while his supposed marriage to Kate is based on one family tradition.

JOHN’S CHILDREN

  1. Magdalena

She was born on March 18, 1783 and baptized on June 8 of that same year. Her sponsors were related to Susanna: Joh. Philip Kissinger and Catharina.

More about her

In her father’s 1800 Census, Bedford County, Pennsylvania, she appears in the “Under 10” column. Simple answer: census-taker’s error. On the other hand, she was 17 when the census was taken. If she got married, then the other girl is a ward or an apprentice.

We have not done any research on her. Any help would be appreciated.

http://wc.rootsweb.ancestry.com/cgi-bin/igm.cgi?op=GET&db=samaylesworth001&id=I3449

  1. William (our direct ancestor)

He was born August 15, 1788 in Bedford County, PA. (Another researcher says he was born on September 4, 1789. The tax records in Huntingdon County say he reached his twenty-first birthday in 1811, so his birth year was 1790, but the age of majority was fluid back then. So 1788 is the best year. He died April 19, 1867 in Mohican Township, Ashland County, OH and is buried in Hayesville-Vermillion Cemetery. His gravestone reads: 78 years, 8 months, 4 days.

He married Catherine Ewing, who was born September 1, 1794 in Washington County, MD (or Bedford County, PA). She died October 1, 1874, in Mohican Township, Ashland County, OH. She was buried in Hayesville-Vermillion Cemetery, Ashland Co., OH. Her gravestone reads: 80 years, 1 month, ? days (broken). Please see the John Ewing post for more information about her parents.

In his father’s 1800 Census, Bedford County, he appears in the “10-16” column, and this poses no problem of chronology.

Please see the William Ryland post for more information.

Does John marry Kate?

If so then these nest three children are theirs. If not, they are his and Susannah’s:

  1. Rachel

She was born possibly in 1793, or 1796 in Bedford County, most likely in Hopewell Township, where her father lived for a few years by then. She married a Mr. Smith and then James McFall.

More about her

In her father’s 1800 Census, she appears in the “Under 10” column, and this poses no problems of chronology.

One researcher says she and Smith had five children: Margaret, Lucinda, Sarah, William and Henry, all in Licking County, Ohio.  http://trees.ancestry.com/owt/person.aspx?pid=81280186

Also go here:

http://trees.ancestry.com/owt/person.aspx?pid=81280186

And here:

http://wc.rootsweb.ancestry.com/cgi-bin/igm.cgi?op=GET&db=chapin59&id=I17631

http://wc.rootsweb.ancestry.com/cgi-bin/igm.cgi?op=GET&db=diana_davis&id=I17631

In the 1830 Census, Vermillion Township, Richland County, William Smith is found in the 40-49 age column, and a free white female (unnamed of course) is in the 30-40 age column. Their children: one son (5-9), 1 son (10-14), 1 daughter under 5, 1 daughter 5-9, and 1 daughter 10-14. But this is a mismatch with the 1850 Census, below.

In 1840 Census, Vermillion, William Smith appears, but their kids are a mismatch with the 1850 Census.

In the 1850 Census, Green Township, District no. 2, Ashland County, she appears as R. McFall, while her husband is named as James McFall. Green is to the south of Vermillion Township, where her (half) brother William settled. The census reveals a blended family, one daughter from his first marriage, and two daughters and one son from her previous marriage to Smith. James (57) is a farmer and from Maryland, while Rachel (54), born in Pennsylvania, is not said to have an occupation (and neither do the other women on the page), though usually the women folk were keeping house, in these censuses. The census taker does not mark down the value of their property. E. McFall (21) is a daughter, and clearly she is from his previous marriage, because W. Smith (20), a son, is nearly the same age as E. McFall, but he has a different last name, which precludes him from being a brother to E. and thus the offspring of James and Rachel. So he has to be a child of Rachel and Smith (her first husband). The rest of the kids are, as follows: John McFall (7); W. McFall (5), a son; L. Smith (18), a daughter; S. Smith (15), a daughter; and H. Smith (10), a son. It could be that the two youngest McFalls (John and W.) are the sons of James and Rachel. If so, then James and Rachel married 7 to 10 years earlier, between 1840 and 1843.

In the 1860 Census, Mineral Township, Bureau County, Illinois, James (67) is a farmer and from Maryland, while Rachel (66) is from Pennsylvania, and her occupation is not named (and neither are they for the other women on the page. Their real property is valued at $1000.00, and personal at $750.00. They are marked in the category of those over 20 who cannot read or write. The kids in the household: Maria (35), Margaret (32), Lucinda (27), Sarah (25), W. Henry (21), and little Melissa (2), obviously James and Rachel’s granddaughter, but who is her parent? Incidentally, Paul Riley lives five houses from James and Rachel in this census.

The two censuses show that Rachel was born 1796 or 1794. Researchers on her brother Paul say he was born in 1794, so we should assume she was born in 1796 or 1793.

Go here for the updated and more accurate information.

http://wc.rootsweb.ancestry.com/cgi-bin/igm.cgi?op=GET&db=samaylesworth001&id=I9669

  1. Paul (Ryland) Riley

He was born October 11, 1794, in Bedford County, probably in Hopewell Township, where his father lived for a few years by that time. Paul married Elizabeth Loughrey before 1817. He died December 26, 1871 in Mineral, Bureau County, IL. She was born on December 16, 1795 in Union Township, Huntingdon County, PA, and died May 17, 1875 in Mineral, Bureau County, Illinois.

More about him

In his father’s 1800 Census, he appears in the “Under 10” column, and this poses no problem of chronology.

Researcher Phyllis J. Hughes has kept track of this lineage. In her family history, part of which she sent me, she writes of Paul’s name change: “At some date between 1840 and 1850, Paul Ryland changed his name to Riley. His reason for the name change is not known” (1977). For me the answer is obvious, which I revealed to her in a telephone conversation back in the mid-1990s. He wanted to live the Life of Riley.

One researcher says Paul and Elizabeth had these children: John, Mary Ann, Susan, Ellen, Eleanor, James, William, Rachel, Cyrus Wilson, Sylvanian Vestus, Elizabeth, Margaret, Emily, and Oliver Perry.

http://trees.ancestry.com/owt/person.aspx?pid=121103372

The next link lists these children: John, Mary, Susan, William and James, Ellen, Rachael, Cyrus, Sylvania, Elizabeth and Margaret, Emily, an infant, and Perry. It also has a short write-up on them.

http://archiver.rootsweb.ancestry.com/th/read/RYLAND/2002-07/1026772456

In the 1820 Census, Paul Ryland lives in Mary Ann Township, Licking County, Ohio. The number and gender of household members in various age categories, runs as follows: 1 male under 10; 1 male over 26 and under 45; 2 females under 10; and 1 female 16-25. One person works in agriculture.

In the 1830 Census, Paul and family reside in Bennington Township, Licking County, Ohio. The number and gender of household members run as follows: 1 male under 5; 2 males 5-9; 1 male 15-19; and 1 male 30-39; 1 female under 5; 1 female 5-9; 2 females 10-14; 1 female 30-39.

In the 1840 Census, Paul Ryland has moved to township not stated, Bureau County, Illinois. The number and gender of the household members run as follows: 1 male 5-9; 1 male 10-14; 1 male 15-19; 1 male 20-29; 1 male 40-49; 1 female under 5; 1 female 5-9; 1 female 40-49.

In the 1850 Census, Concord Township, Bureau County, Illinois, Paul Riley (55) is a farmer, and Elizabeth is inaccurately recorded at 22 years old. Her occupation is not listed, but neither are the ones for the other women on the page. Their real estate is valued at $1970.00. Both are said to be from Pennsylvania. Their children: Cyrus (20), born in Ohio; Cylvanion (sic) (17), born in Ohio; Margaret (15), Elizabeth (15), both born in Ohio; Emily (13), born in Illinois; and Perry (8), born in Illinois. Sylvanion to Perry are marked as having attended school within the past year. If the origins of the kids are accurate, then Paul and family moved to Illinois in 1835 to 1837. This is confirmed by a family tradition, which says they moved on April 1, 1835 and arrived in June of the same year.

When these last two [Elizabeth and Margaret] were about three months old, the parents decided to move West. So on the first day of April, 1835, they started for Illinois, which was then considered the far West. About thirty relatives joined them, making about fifteen wagons in the train. They arrived at the present site of Tiskilwa in June of the same year, and settled afterwards between Sheffield and Buda, making the second settlement in the county.

Source: http://archiver.rootsweb.ancestry.com/th/read/RYLAND/2002-07/1026772456

The State of Illinois has an 1855 Census. In Paul Rily’s case, it is in Mineral Township, Bureau County. He has 2 sons 10-20, and he is between 60 and 70. He must have just turned 60 in 1855. Elizabeth is between 50-60. Value of Livestock: $1610.00 (or $1660.00); no. of lbs. of wool: 130.00. Sylvanian Rily and Cyrus Rily are neighbors.

In the 1860 Census, Mineral Township, Bureau County, Illinois, Paul Riley (65) is a farmer and from Pennsylvania, while Elizabeth (63) is from the same state, and her occupation is not listed (and neither are the other women on the page, though the censuses usually say, “keeping house”). Their real property is valued at the large amount of $6000.00, and their personal at $2500.00. Oleon (sic) P. (19) lives with them, and interestingly, Henry Smith (2) (Rachel’s son by her first marriage) also lives with the Rileys. Sylvanian Rily (27) and Angelina (21) and one-year-old Rily R. (sic) are Paul’s neighbors. Their real property is valued at $1800.00, and personal at $540.00. Cyrus W. Rily (30) and Sarah E. (30) are neighbors, and their children Melvin P. (5), Deborah E. (3), Thomas (2) and a farm laborer DeLay Webster (15) live in the household.

In the 1870 Census, Mineral Township, Bureau County, Illinois, Paul Rily (75) is at home, while Elizabeth (73) keeps house. Both are from Pennsylvania. Their son Cyrus (40) farms the land; Elvira (42) keeps house; Perry (15) is a farm hand and attended school within the year; is this Melvin P., Cyrus and Elvira’s son? Debby (13) is at home and attended school within the year; Tho’s (age illegible) attended school within the year; Cha’s (9) attended school within the year; Emma (7) attended school within the year; and Hiram (1). The last four or five kids belong to Cyrus and Elvira and are Paul and Elizabeth’s grandkids. Paul and Elizabeth’s real property is valued at $4800.00 and their personal property at $1000.00. Cyrus and Elvira’s personal property is at $700.00.

It is a sad fact that Paul will die the next year, and Elizabeth will join him in 1874. This must have caused a lot of grief not only in their grown kids, but particularly in the grandkids. They had a lot of time and closeness to bond, living in the same house.

Go here for the bare-bone facts about Paul:

http://wc.rootsweb.ancestry.com/cgi-bin/igm.cgi?op=GET&db=samaylesworth001&id=I550

This link adds more information, but sources are not cited:

http://wc.rootsweb.ancestry.com/cgi-bin/igm.cgi?op=GET&db=stephanie9798&id=I0973

  1. John, Jr.

He was born possibly in 1795, probably in Hopewell Township, Bedford County. It is reported that he died in 1863 Natchez, Adams County, Mississippi.

More about him

He was born possibly around 1795-1797, Hopewell Township, Bedford County, Pennsylvania. He was a minor when his father died before February 9, 1814, for he appears in the Huntingdon County, Pennsylvania Orphans Court Docket as such in April 1814. Family tradition says he served in the War of 1812 and the Mexican War in 1848. Family tradition says he died in 1863 Natchez, Adams County, Mississippi. We have been unable to track him in the 1850 and 1860 Censuses, so far.

Natchez fell to the Union army on July 4, 1863, so maybe he died in the siege, or maybe the family tradition is garbled.

Source of family traditions:

http://archiver.rootsweb.ancestry.com/th/read/RYLAND/2002-07/1026772456

Other links:

http://trees.ancestry.com/owt/person.aspx?pid=164288752

http://wc.rootsweb.ancestry.com/cgi-bin/igm.cgi?op=GET&db=samaylesworth001&id=I124

John appears in the court records, in April 1814, Huntingdon County, Pennsylvania, shortly after his father died. He is a minor and needs a guardian.

John's Probate 2

Transcription Begins:

April Term 1814  . . . .

On motion of W [Mr?] Allen, John Ryland appearing in court making choice of Henry Shoup for his Guardian.

Whereupon it is considered by the Court and ordered that the [said] Henry Shoup be and he is hereby appointed Guardian of the said minor — fees paid by the minor

Transcription Ends.

Source: Huntingdon County Orphans Court Docket, Book B, p. 303

So how old was John when his father died in early 1814? 18 or 19? Then he was born in 1795-1796. If he was 16-17, then he was born in 1797-1798. His mother (either Susannah or Kate) was 45+ in the 1800 Census, so she was born in or before 1755. She was giving birth to him from 40-43 years old. It’s safest to conclude John was about 18-19 when his father died, so his mother had him when she was 40 or 41. This was done back then (our mother had twins when she was 39).

However, there is a male 16-18 (b. 1802-1804) living with (our) William Ryland in the 1820 Census, and this is too old to be William’s son John, who was born in 1816. A female lives in the household who’s marked down as 45+. Surely this is Susannah or Kate (William’s wife Catherine’s mother Mary was nicely settled with her husband John Ewing). So was William’s brother John the male who is 16-18 in 1820 (b. 1802-1804)? But then Susannah or Kate was giving birth after 45, and we’re pushing biology and historical probability too far, though stranger things have happened. The male who’s 16-18 in the 1820 Census may be a hired hand or an apprentice of some sort.

Recall that family tradition says John died in 1863 in Natchez, Mississippi, which is right on the Mississippi River. There is a John Ryland in a “trimmed down” 1860 Census, New Orleans, First Ward. New Orleans is on the Mississippi River too. In fact, Illinois is on the same river, only way up north. He may have ventured down south from Illinois on that majestic river, after living with or near his brother Paul and sister Rachel, in Bureau County, Illinois. That county is not so far from the river. Yet, the Ohio River flows into the Mississippi, so he may have gone that route, starting from the buckeye state. In any case, we can’t be sure he’s ours in the New Orleans 1860 Census, because we have been unable to find the original census image. If he’s 60+ (born 1790s) and from Pennsylvania, then surely he’s ours.

Geography and the Mississippi and Ohio Rivers make John’s death in Natchez a very real possibility and support family tradition or at least don’t contradict it.

Maps of Illinois Counties:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_counties_in_Illinois

The Mississippi River and the communities along the river:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mississippi_River

The Ohio River:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ohio_River

Early Maps of Pennsylvania Counties

Go here: http://www.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~pagenweb/map/index.html

Genealogical Maps of the counties of Pennsylvania. Department of Internal Affairs. Thomas A. Logue, secretary. Compiled and prepared by the Bureau of Land Records – 1933.

JOHN’S LIFE IN FOUR STAGES

John’s life can be divided into four stages:

  1. Berks County (1755-56 to 1781): This stage overlaps with the second one. We don’t know much about his childhood. As noted, in 1781 he got married.
  2. Military Service (1778-1783): He enlisted for the Revolutionary War, on April 1, 1778, and swore the loyalty oath on June 1, 1778. The payment for his service goes to November 4, 1783.
  3. Bedford County (1789-1807): The next time he appears is in January 1789, when he was enlisted in a militia. Also, he owned land. His father Paul died before March 3, 1789. His mother died between May 10 and June 7, 1791. Both resided back in Berks County, so he had to go back there to help administer his father’s estate. His mother’s estate was very small, so he did not get involved. The tax records in Bedford County show he moved to Huntingdon County in 1807.
  4. Huntingdon County (1808-1814): He appears in the tax records in 1808. He died before February 9, 1814, probably late January or even very early February.

County Maps of Pennsylvania

County Maps of PA

Missing from the handwritten years is Huntingdon County (northeast of Bedford) for John Ryland, who moved there in 1807. And the PA Rylands didn’t own land in Cecil Co. Maryland. These were the Maryland Rylands, a seperate family line.

During the last two stages and beyond, what happened to his children – as far as the records will show?

Stage 1: Berks County

We don’t know much about his early life. He may not have been born in Cumru Township or Robeson Township, for the first time his father appears in the records is 1763. Thus, we don’t know where he was born. But it’s not hard to figure out what he was doing. His dad knew how to operate a mill and to farm. John did too, according to the records. His life in Berks County overlaps with his service in the Revolutionary War, which is outlined, below.

1780

Cumru Township, Berks County. John Ryland appears in the statewide index of taxes. Paul Ryland also appears in Cumru Township in this list:  Cumru Township. Berks, County. Return and Assessment; John is a single freeman (p. 341).

Source: John D. Stemmons

The tax amount, according to this link, is 11 .5 .0:

http://www.footnote.com/image/3071384/Reyland/

1781

Cumru Township, Berks County. Return and Assessment; single freeman (p. 470); amount of tax: 2.5.0 (pounds, shillings, pennies)

http://www.footnote.com/image/3071644/Ryland/

Marriage

He married Susannah Kissinger (Kiesinger) on September 1, 1781, in Bern Township. The Return and Assessment was taken in the spring, so it makes sense that he was listed as a single freeman before his marriage in September.

Stage 2: Military Service

On April 1, 1778, John enlisted in the military to serve in the Revolutionary War. On June 1, 1778, he swore the oath of allegiance. He gets paid for his service up to November 4, 1783.

For an unspecified duration he was a prisoner of war of the British, and he was a wagon master in the frontiers.

Oath of Allegiance

The Names of Persons

Who Took

The Oath of Allegiance

Berks County, Pennsylvania

Act of General Assembly

June 13, 1777

Recorded in Book D, p. 78

1778

June 1

707. John Ryland, Sworn

James Ryland, John’s younger brother and second-born to Paulus Reylandt, also took the oath.

John Ryland’s Date of Enlistment

April 1, 1778

J Ryland Enlist Maj Parr Co_2

John (Jn’o) Ryland is the tenth from the top. This is Maj. James (Ja’s) Parr’s Company, Pennsylvania Regiment. It is only one of several of John’s records. Sidenote: It looks like four men deserted (not John!), and two men got promoted. One man went with the sappers and miners.

The Revolutionary War (War of Independence)

America (and allies) v. England (and allies)

Brief Timeline:

April 1775: Battle of Lexington (British victory) and Concord (American victory)

March 1776: British evacuate Boston

July 1776: Declaration of Independence

August 1776: Battle at Brooklyn Heights (British victory)

October 1776: New York City in British hands

January 1777: Battle near Princeton (American victory)

September 1777: British occupy Philadelphia

September 1777: Battle at Brandywine, PA (British victory)

October 1777: Battle at Germantown, PA (British victory)

October 1777: Saratoga, NY (American victory; Gen. John Burgoyne surrenders with 5,700 troops)

1777: Washington’s army winters at Valley Forge

1778 War shifts to the South War near Savannah Georgia (American Victory)

May 1780: Charleston, SC (British victory)

August 1780: Camden, SC (British victory),

October 1780: Kings Mountain, NC (American victory)

Jan 1781: Cowpens, SC (American victory)

March 1781: Guilford Courthouse (British victory)

September 1781 Naval Battle off VA coast (American victory)

October 1781: Battle at Yorktown, VA (American victory)

October 19, 1781: Cornwallis surrenders at Yorktown

November 1782: Preliminary articles of peace were signed

September 1783: Peace treaty with England signed in Paris

John Ryland, Wagon Master

J Ryland Acct Ledger A_2

John is reimbursed for his commission to purchase horses for the Cause. Note how the record calls the baby nation “the United States.” A hundred years earlier people referred to them as “provinces” and not even “United Provinces”!

Links to Pennsylvania State Archives:

I leave the spelling variations as they appear in the originals.

John Ryland enlists as a private on April 1, 1778:

http://www.footnote.com/image/3069544/Ryland/

Here’s John’s company, 7th Pennsylvania Regiment, under Major James Parr:

http://www.footnote.com/image/3183849/Ryland/

http://www.footnote.com/image/3069560/Ryland/

http://www.footnote.com/image/3184052/Ryland/

John serves in the First Pennsylvania Regiment, Continental Line:

http://www.footnote.com/image/3068604/Ryland/

http://www.footnote.com/image/3373033/Ryland/

John is listed among the prisoners of war taken by the British.

http://www.footnote.com/image/2906634/Ryland/

John Reyland is an assistant wagon master. The document does not have any date or title, but the manuscript reads: “Soldiers of the Revolution who received pay for their services” and “Rangers on the Frontiers, 1778-1783.” But we should not picture him in this specific service for the whole duration. He served under multiple commanders.

http://www.footnote.com/image/3071644/Ryland/

John Rylands served from April 1, 1778 to 1781; other records extend his payment and interest for service to November 4, 1783:

http://www.footnote.com/image/3184325/Rylands/

John Rylands served in the Continental Line, Seventh Pennsylvania:

http://www.footnote.com/image/3069607/Rylands/

John Rylands is in the Fourth Regiment of Pennsylvania:

http://www.footnote.com/image/3069607/Rylands/

John Rilands serves under William Lusk, light infantry, in the Seventh Pennsylvania Regiment, commanded by Lt. Col. Josiah Harmer, from September to October, 1780:

http://www.footnote.com/image/3184191/Rilands/

That last record shows how rapidly and diversely privates could be assigned to different regiments and commanders.

Also, militia and presumably companies and even regiments dissolved often and were re-formed under new commanders. One researcher writes that militiamen were at the mercy of farming cycles and went home after the expiration of their service.

It was usually the length of service that proved the greatest stumbling block. Service in the militia was, as George Washington described it to John Hancock in September 1776, of variable lengths, but generally there were “two sorts [of militiamen], the Six Months and those sent in as temporary aid.” Men who were very often at the mercy of the demands of the farming cycle could not make commitments that took them from their farms for long periods  . . . The history of the war is punctuated with what might seem to us the most egregious betrayals of the patriot cause by militia who, on the expiration of their terms of service, simply picked up sticks and headed home (Michael Stevenson, Patriot Battles: How the War of Independence Was Fought, Harper Perennial, 2007, pp. 11-12)

Transcription ends.

John Ryland’s 1780 Service

J Ryland Payroll AB_2

John Ryland is seventh from top. Note his signature to the right.

John Ryland’s 1781 Service

J Ryland Payroll AB_3

John is fifth from the top. Note his signature to the right.

John Ryland’s 1783 Service

J Ryland Payroll A_3

John Ryland is in the middle. Note his signature to the right.

John Ryland’s 1783 Service

J Ryland Payroll A_2

John is second from bottom. Note his signature to the right.

In those four records, his signature remains consistent. The loop in the J starts high from a tucked in position, not from the baseline, and the d at the end finishes with an emphatic loop to the right. The capital R in Ryland is also consistent.

Pennsylvania State Archives:

Militia Officers Index Cards, 1775-1800 (series #13.36)

These documents are abstracts from original records in the State Archives of Pennsylvania. I have transcribed the data as written in the cards, leaving abbreviations as they appear. They show the kind of soldier John Ryland did and the activity he did.

To understand the index cards, here is a list of key terms and facts, provided by the Archives:

  • Pennsylvania militia was organized under Act of Assembly of March 17, 1777;
  • It required compulsory enrollment, by constables, for able-bodied white males between 18 and 53;
  • Purpose: to repel invaders;
  • Duty after November 1783 is not considered active;
  • Basic information: name, rank, active or inactive, county of residence, battalion;
  • The soldier may have been delinquent and fined or the fine may have been abated;
  • “Active duty” means soldier saw active duty in PA Militia or PA Line; “Inactive Duty” means that he did not see active duty;
  • Depreciation Pay Certificates apply to soldiers serving 1777-1778; the currency was depreciating fast, so they were paid in the certificates that were interest-bearing and negotiable;
  • Arrears and allowances due were met by issuing to each soldier still in service a number of interest-bearing final settlements called Pierce’s Certificates, named after the paymaster who dispensed them.
  • Militia Loan of 1784-1785 paid individuals for services and goods provided during the Revolutionary War that had not been reimbursed at that time.
Item 44

Active Duty Line

Ryland, John

Unit: 1st Regiment

Final Settlement, Pay to 3 Nov. 1783: 40 dollars

Interest from 4 Nov. 1783: .60. 90

Issue date: 4 Aug 1784

Certificate No. 74436; Letter B

Authority: Receipt Book A for Final Settlements (Pierce’s Certificates), p. 78, Records of the Comptroller, at D. P. R.

The Basic Record Proves Active Duty Before 16 November 1783.

Item 45

Active Duty Line

Ryland, John

Unit: 1st Regiment

Final Settlement: 50 dollars

Gratuity allowed the noncommissioned officer and privates who served to the end of the war. Interest from 4 Nov. 1783: .90

Signer of Receipt (other than soldier): Soldier

Issue date: 4 Aug. 1784.

Certificate No.: 75156; Letter G

Authority: Receipt Book A for Final Settlements (Pierce’s Certificates), p. 103, Records of the Comptroller, at D. P. R.

The Basic Record Proves Active Duty Before 16 November 1783.

Item 46

Active Duty Line

Ryland, John (so signed)

Unit: 4th Regiment

Final Settlement, Pay and Subsistence to 1 Jan 1782: 76 dollars.

Interest from 1 Jan 1782: .90

Signer of Receipt (other than soldier): Soldier

Issue Date: 4 Aug 1784

Certificate: 09548; Letter D

Authority: Receipt Book B for Final Settlements (Pierce’s Certificates), p. 98, Records of the Comptroller, at D. P. R.

The Basic Record Proves Active Duty Before 16 November 1783.

Item 47

Active Duty Line

Ryland, John (so signed)

Unit: 4th Regiment

Final Settlement: 80 dollars; pay and subsistence to 1 Jan 1782.

Interest from 1 Jan 1782: .90

Signer of Receipt (other than soldier): Soldier

Issue Date: 4 Aug 1784

Certificate: 69827; Letter A

Authority: Receipt Book B for Final Settlements (Pierce’s Certificates), p. 109, Records of the Comptroller, at D. P. R.

The Basic Record Proves Active Duty Before 16 November 1783.

Item 48

Active Duty Line

Ryland, John

Unit: 7th Regiment

Final Settlement: 33 dollars; pay and subsistence to 1 Jan 1782.

Interest from 1 Jan 1782: 30.90

Signer of Receipt (other than soldier): Soldier

Issue Date: 4 Aug 1784

Certificate: 69827; Letter A

Authority: Receipt Book B for Final Settlements (Pierce’s Certificates), p. 42, Records of the Comptroller, at D. P. R.

The Basic Record Proves Active Duty Before 16 November 1783.

Item 49

Active Duty Line

Ryland, John

Company commander: Major Parr

Unit: 7th Penna Regiment

Time of Service: Enlisted 1 April 1778

Undated return of Major Parr’s Company

The Basic Record Proves Active Duty.

Item 50

Ryland, John

Wagon Master

£ 18.10.0 was advanced to him on Aug. 1780 by Henry Haller, Wagon Master

CG. Grand Account. Account CCXI. Ledger C, p. 53

Item 51

Ryland, John

Rank: District Wagon Master

County: Berks

Unit: 6th [?]

Total: £ 27.17.5

Duty: Repayment of moneys advanced by him; on voucher of 6 April 1784

CG. Grand Account, Account CLX, Ledger [?] p. 494

Militia Loans of 1 Apr. 1784 & 30 Mar. 1785, “Public Debt,” Records of the Comptroller General at D.P.R.

Where a Military Connection Is Specified (But Not Elsewhere) the Basic Record Proves Active Duty.

Item 52

Inactive Duty Militia

Ryland, John

Rank: Pvt.

Company: Capt. Philip Krick

Dated: 1777-1778

Authority: Unit Muster roll for the period

Muster Fines: £ 1.2.6; Berks County Fine Books, p. 45

“Military Accounts: Militia.” Records of the Comptroller General, at D.P.R

The Basic Record Does Not Prove Active Duty.

Item 53

Inactive Duty Militia

Ryland, John

Inactive Duty Militia

Lieutenancy: Berks County; 6th Battalion

Company Capt. Philip Krick 6th Co.

Authority: Fine Books, p. 95, the period 1781-1782

Muster Fines: £ 2.16.0; Berks County Fine Books, p. 95

“Military Accounts: Militia.” Records of the Comptroller General, at D.P.R

The Basic Record Does Not Prove Active Duty.

Item 45 (Different Series)

Reyland, Jno.

Rank: Late Asst. Wagon Master

County: Berks

Certificate No. 6

Total 25.17.5

Authorities: Register, vol. A, p. 1

Militia Loans of 1 Apr. 1784 & 30 Mar. 1785, “Public Debt,” Records of the Comptroller General at D.P.R.

Where a Military Connection Is Specified (But Not Elsewhere) the Basic Record Proves Active Duty.

Item 46

Active Duty Line

Reylands, John

Rank: Pvt.

Unit 7th Regiment

Amount Settled: 62.6.2

Certificate No. 86

Series: Carlisle (2 – 18 April 1781)

Authorities: Accounts of Auditors of Depreciation Accounts, Book A, p. 20, Register of Depreciation Certification

“Public Debt Records of the Comptroller General at D.P.R.

Either of the Basic Records proves Active duty performed within the period 1 Jan 1777 – 1 Aug 1780

Item 35 (Different Series)

Active Duty Line

Rilands, John

Company Commander: Capt. Wm Lusk

Unit: 7th Penna Regiment

Muster Roll for Sept. & Dec. 1780

Authorities: Unit Payroll, Line Operations; “Military Accounts” Records of the Comptroller General at D.P. R.

The Basic Record Proves Active Duty.

Being a wagon master was not easy. One researcher describes the challenges of fording main rivers without bridges, feeding the horses, and traveling on rugged terrain with lumbering wagons during bad weather:.

Wagoner: Enlisted Corps

The constant shortage of money meant the Army could never hire civilian wagoners in the necessary numbers. Attempts to use infantrymen and cannoneers did not work, because those soldiers lacked the skills needed to drive the wagons and care for the horses.

General Washington approved the proposal to enlist teamsters for the duration of the war to create a professional organization to deliver supplies in a timely manner.

Incentives such as the brown wagoner’s uniform were created to attract civilian teamsters to military service, but lack of money thwarted plans to control military transportation.

Wage limitations established by Congress were so low that the Army could not complete with the high wages offered by civilian teamsters. Despite the best efforts of the Quartermaster General, the Army’s attempt to establish a military wagon corps failed.

Transcription ends.

http://www.transchool.lee.army.mil/museum/transportation%20museum/revolutionary.htm

Transport was the linchpin of supply and throughout the war was a logistical headache for the quartermaster general’s departments of both armies. The road system was sparse, the terrain rugged. In bad weather the roads turned to quagmire. (During February 1778 not one wagon could reach the encampment at Valley Forge.) It took over two days to travel the ninety miles between New York and Philadelphia. There were few bridges, and none across the main rivers. The lumbering wagons that carried goods throughout the interior were in short supply. Finding forage to geed the wagon horses was a constant challenge (Michael Stevenson, Patriot Battles: How the War of Independence Was Fought, Harper Perennial, 2007, pp. 105-06)

Transcription ends.

John’s DAR Record

RYLAND, JOHN

Ancestor #: A206184

Service: PENNSYLVANIA

Rank: PRIVATE

Birth: ANTE 1755

Death: ANTE 2-9-1814 HOPEWELL TWP HUNTINGDON CO PENNSYLVANIA

Service Source: NARA, M881, COMP MIL SERV RECS, ROLL #789

Service Description: 1) ENTITLED TO DONATION LANDS FOR SERVICE 1783, 1ST PA REGT

http://services.dar.org/public/dar_research/search_adb/?action=full&p_id=A206184

Original Record

John Ryland, Private

This is not a DAR record; it’s in the PA State Archives. Incidentally, the military clerk’s handwriting is spectacular.

Two Phantom John Rylands

The Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) has records concerning three John Rylands, all connected to Berks County, Pennsylvania, around the same time. DAR has a searchable website, so the following records are available to the public.

The three Johns are as follows:

  1. John: DAR Ancestor # A206184

He’s the subject of this post and has plenty of records. He’s not the phantom.

The next two are the phantoms.

  1. John: DAR Ancestor # A098871

He is the first phantom. He was allegedly born in 1738, London, and married Rachel Sylvester, and they had Sylvester and Andrew.  He supposedly died in Berks County, Pennsylvania, in 1821. One researcher of an earlier generation says he descends from “Lord Ryland.”

Unfortunately, there is no documentation for this claim. In fact there is no documentation for his birth in 1738 and his marriage to Rachel.

As for his death in Berks County in 1821, we wrote the Office of the Register of Wills and Clerk of the Orphans’ Court. They replied with official letterhead, as follows.

Transcription Begins:

Dear _______ [my name],

We do not have a John Ryland, 1821. I have sent you a copy of the Ryland’s [sic] we would have.  You can check our website for future reference. It is: www.co.berks.us/rwills, go to genealogy.

Sincerely,

_______ [clerk’s name]

Transcription Ends.

By 1821, records in Berks County were getting fuller and fuller as the years passed on. But the county clerk comes up empty on this John Ryland.

The copy that the clerk sent us shows Paul and Louisa Ryland, who are our John’s parents – the real-life John (A206184). They are also the parents of Andrew. Paul and Louisa have plenty of records in Berks County at the right time.

Here’s the phantom’s DAR record:

http://services.dar.org/public/dar_research/search_adb/?action=full&p_id=A098871

  1. John: DAR Ancestor # A098872

He’s the second phantom. He allegedly married Eleanor, and they had a son Sylvester. John was allegedly born and raised in Berks County and served in the Revolutionary War from there. Then he supposedly moved to Allegany County, Maryland and died in 1826.

A thorough search has been done for many decades for his records of everyday life in Berks, but all of them – every one – belong to the real-life John (A206184), the subject of this long post.

As for John’s (A098872) passing in Allegany County, Maryland, we wrote the Allegany County Register of Wills and Clerk of the Orphans Court, who received our request June 6, 2010 (so says its stamp on our letter). The county clerk handwrote on it the following and returned it to us:

Transcription Begins:

I am sorry, but I have no probate records for John Ryland.

Transcription Ends.

By 1826, probate records were getting fuller and fuller, but they come up empty for this John. So he too is a phantom.

Because of these irregularities, lineage errors, and missing documents, the DAR website now requires the two phantom John Rylands (A098871 and A098872) to be re-proven. The website is searchable, so the above records are available to the public.

Here’s his DAR link:

http://services.dar.org/public/dar_research/search_adb/?action=full&p_id=A098872

Questions about One Man Serving in All Those Regiments and Armies

What about the different regiments and companies and so on, for the same John Ryland? Could one man serve in all of them?

Short answer: Yes. This answer is confirmed for any student of the Revolutionary War.

First, one historian writes that militiamen were at the mercy of farming cycles and went home after the expiration of their service.

Transcription Begins:

It was usually the length of service that proved the greatest stumbling block. Service in the militia was, as George Washington described it to John Hancock in September 1776, of variable lengths, but generally there were “two sorts [of militiamen], the Six Months and those sent in as temporary aid.” Men who were very often at the mercy of the demands of the farming cycle could not make commitments that took them from their farms for long periods . . . . (Michael Stevenson, Patriot Battles: How the War of Independence Was Fought, Harper Perennial, 2007, pp. 11-12)

Transcription Ends.

Thus, our John (A206184) could have gone home and jumped back into the conflict, rejoining or being reassigned to battalions and regiments and so on at different times. His father Paul (A206879), like most early Americans, was a farmer. Surely John went home to help him out.

Another example: John got married September 1, 1781, when the war was still going on. Per all his war records, his service began April 1778 and ended November 1783. So he had to go home to court and wed Susanna.

Further, the Revolutionary War was in continual flux. Many companies (etc.) dissolved and re-formed in different ways and at different times. Plus, John was a wagon master. He had to travel, transporting supplies and weapons, and so on. He was surely assigned to various companies and regiments for his five-and-a-half years of service.

Necessity and flexibility worked hand-in-glove in those difficult times.

Finally, all the service references to John consistently show him as a private and wagon master or assistant wagon master. It’s not as if one John was a captain, while another was a private, and still another was a major. Granted, privates outnumber officers, but the records are consistent.

However, sometimes the family traditions have a kernel of truth in them. There is a line of Maryland Rylands who settled in that state in the 1600’s, and in my search of different family lines in Virginia I saw some Rylands who settled there in the early 1700’s and probably the 1600’s. One of the Maryland or Virginia Rylands named John could have served up north in Pennsylvania and then gone back home. If so, then John’s descendants need to prove their service, as DAR requires.

But one thing is certain: there were no two extra John Rylands (three total) who settled and grew up and served in Berks County. Only our John Ryland, whose Berks County records are numerous and connected to his father Paul, lived there.

Stage 3: Bedford County

After his service in the war, John moves to Bedford County, Pennsylvania.

Militia Service

January 26, 1789

John is required by law to sign up for the militia in Hopewell Township, Bedford County. Incidentally, John bought property from Joseph Shoup in 1799 (see below). The Shoup family figures prominently in Hopewell. Here’s the link:

http://www.footnote.com/image/3541905/Ryland/

John’s Militia Record, 1789

John Ryland Bedford Co Militia 3

John is in the first column, sixth from the top.

Remember, the Revolutionary War ended in 1783. But he had to join the militia six years later.

Tax Lists

March 5, 1791

Hopewell Township, Bedford County. This is a preprinted form. The blanks are filled in by hand (in italics here).

Bedford County, ss.

To Andrew Levenston Collector of Hopewell Township, for the year 1791.

You are hereby required forthwith to inform the Parties mentioned in this Duplicate, of the respective Sums wherewith they are charged, and to acquaint them, that the Day of Appeal is on the seventeenth Day of March Next at ten o’Clock in the forenoon of s’d [said] Day at the house of James Martin [illegible] in Providance [sic] Township and where the Party cannot be found, you are to leave Notice in Writing with some of the Family or at the last place of said Party’s Abode, the Sum he or she is assessed; and also of the Day of Appeal, at which Day you are to return this Duplicate, with the Names of such Person or Persons, and of such Estates as shall be concealed or omitted in this Duplicate, under Penalty of Fifty Pounds, as the Law directs. Given under our Hands, this fifth Day of March 1791

Anthony Nangel [?]

Matthew Taylor

Commissioners

Transcription ends.

Person’s Names State Tax County Tax
Ryland John – 1.0 —- 9
Ryland James – 5.5 – 3.11

John Ryland is in the Index to Sixth Series

http://www.footnote.com/image/3120290/Ryland/ vol 3, p. 28?

1795

Hopewell Township, Bedford County. John Riland, James Riland, and Andrew Riland – three brothers – appear in the tax list. John owes 2.10; James 6.6; Andrew 11.6. Another list of the same year spells their name Reiland, though the taxes are the same.

1796

Hopewell Township, Bedford County. Taxes. James Ryland and John Ryland are brothers who owned neighboring farms.

1796 Hopewell Township
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N
James 108 1 1 60 4 2 500 2 50
John 160 1 1 23 1 1 400 2
A = Names; B = Acres; C = Houses; D = Cabins?; E = Barns; F = Ca’ [?] Roofs; G = Grist Mill; H = Saw Mill; I = Clear Land; J = Horses; K = Cows; L = Valuation in Dollars; M & N = Tax in Dollars and Cents

April 24, 1799

Hopewell Township, Bedford County. John Ryland owned a home that was far above the average price of $25.00.

General List of all swelling houses which, with the outhouses appurtenant thereto, and the lots on which the same are erected, not exceeding two acres in any case, were owned, possessed, or occupied on the first day of October 1798 within the county of Bedford, composed of the first assessment district of the 8th division in the state of Pennsylvania, exceeding in value the sum of One Hundred Dollars.

Note: the “Particular List” which would give more detail about the most valuable houses in the district is apparently lost for Hopewell Township. The value of the homes of the following owners is well above the $25 average when compared to the 121 dwellings appearing on the Hopewell township farm list.

Hopewell Township
Occupant / Owner Dwelling Houses Out-Houses Value Rate of Assessment Dollars Cents Mills
Ryland, John 1 200 .2 70
Done by Thomas Vickroy, April 24, 1799; Source: U.S. Direct Tax of 1798 for Fulton County, Pa.

1799

Hopewell Township, Bedford County. Taxes.

1799 Hopewell Township
A B C D E F G H I J K L M
John 160 1 1 20 2 4 466 1 17
James 108 1 1 50 2 3 398 1
A = Names; B = Land; C = Houses; D = Barns; E = Clear Land; F = Grist Mill; G = Saw Mills; H = Horses; I = Cattle; J & K = Valuation in Dollars & Cents; L & M = Tax in Dollars and Cents

1802

Hopewell Township, Bedford County. John and his brother James Reyland are taxed 2.10 (James) and 1.93; John is taxed again: .40.

1804

Hopewell Township, Bedford County. The original table has 23 columns, most of which are unmarked, so the table is not duplicated here. Anyway, John owns 80 acres in a deed and 80 acres in a warrant. The “rate” for both is “1st”; he has 1 house; 4 ½ Lots; 2 horses and 2 cows; the property is valued at $777.00 and taxed at $1.93. His brother Henry also appears. He has no land; he has 1 house; occupation: hatter; his things are valued at $52.00 and taxed at $.15.

1805

Hopewell Township, Bedford County. John Ryland, James Ryland, and Henry Ryland – three brothers – appear in the tax list. John owes $1.93; James $2.45; Henry $.15.

February 21, 1807

Hopewell Township, Bedford County. This is a preprinted form. The blanks are filled in by hand (in italics here). The supplement order is handwritten. It says the assessor is to take an oath or affirmation before a judge or justice of the peace. “Affirmation” indicates that many Quakers lived in PA. They are forbidden to take oaths.

The most interesting part of the assessment is that John Ryland and James Ryland are crossed off the list, which means they had moved out of the township. If they had still resided there, John’s tax would have been $1.93 and James’ $2.45. Recall that John’s Letters of Administration were issued and his Inventory and Appraisement was taken in neighboring Huntingdon County. Also, James received a warrant of 80 acres in Hopewell Township in Huntingdon County (Yes, Huntingdon County also has a Hopewell Township), on January 16, 1792. The date of return is December 12, 1800, for 77 acres and 100 perches.

John next appears in the 1808 tax record, in Hopewell Township, Huntingdon County (yes these are two different townships in two adjacent counties)

The record reads:

Bedford County, ss.

To Joseph Williams Assessor [crossed out: Collector] of Hopewell Township.

You are hereby required forthwith to inform the Parties mentioned in this Duplicate, of the respective Sums wherewith they are charged, and to acquaint them, that the Day of Appeal is on the 22 Day of April Next at 11 o’Clock in the morning at Joseph Williams in said Township and where the Party cannot be found, you are to leave Notice in Writing with some of the Family or at the last place of said Party’s Abode, the Sum he or she is assessed; and also of the Day of Appeal, at which Day you are to return this Duplicate, with the Names of such Person or Persons, and of such Estates as shall be concealed or omitted in this Duplicate, under Penalty of Fifty Pounds, as the Law directs. Given under our Hands, this 21st  Day of Feb’y 1807

David Mann

Joshua Peirson

Anthony Nangel [?]

Commissioners

You are further required to make return to us of all Transfers in your township and all single freemen who have arived [sic] at the age of twenty one years, since the last assessment, and all persons who have come to reside in the township, since the last assessment, together with their property and a valuation of the same; and all persons who have removed out of the township since that time; you are also required to take and subscribe an oath or affirmation before some Judge or Justice of the peace (before you enter on your duty) to prepare the same with fidelity and produce a certificate of your oath to us on the day of Appeal.

Tho’s [?]

Transcription ends.

1811

Hopewell Township, Bedford County. Finally, it should be noted that John’s brother Henry appears in the tax lists, long after John has moved away to Hopewell Township, Huntingdon County (yes, there are two different Hopewell Townships in adjacent counties). Henry has a patent of 23 acres; he has one horse and one cow and is an innkeeper. Things are valued at $254.00 and taxed at $.50.

Deeds

Deeds are about land transactions. Recall that we’re still in Bedford County, at this stage in John’s life.

December 23, 1789

Bedford County. John received a warrant of five acres, which was surveyed on that date. This date is about ten months after his father died.

Situate on the South East Side of the Raystown branch of the Juniata – in Hopewell Township Bedford County Containing Seven Acres and eighty-three perches and allowance of six pc [percent]. Resurveyed the 21st day of March 1827 on a warrant granted to John Ryland the 23 day of December 1789 for 5 ac.

Transcription ends.

Survey recorded in book D16, p. 267. Warrant may be recorded in Vol. P, but no reference is given in the abstract.

April 11, 1793

Bedford County. John received a warrant of 75 acres, which was surveyed on that date.

Situate on the South East Side of the Raystown Branch of Juniata – in Hopewell Township, Bedford County, containing one hundred and nine acres 147 p. and alle. Of six pr. ct. Survey’d for John Ryland the 28 day of May 1793 and resurvey’d the 21st day of March 1827 on a Warrant dated the 11th day of Apriel [sic] 1793 for 75 acres.

Transcription ends.

Recorded in vol. H, no. 46, p. 194; Survey recorded in book C211 p. 169.

Sylvester Ryland in Bedford County

Incidentally, Sylvester Ryland, whom some wrongly suppose belongs in Paul’s family, received a warrant for 100 acres, which was surveyed on January 19, 1789. (James Ryland also got 400 acres, which was surveyed on May 16, 1794.)

Does this prove Sylvester is John’s brother and belongs in Paul’s family? No.

Sylvester also has property near his kin in Maryland. So which fact is more dispositive? The MD Sylvester buying land next to John and James, or the (supposed) PA Sylvester buying land among the MD Rylands?

Both facts are equal, a one-to-one tie. Therefore, the land purchases prove nothing about kinship, except possibly the two separate and distinct Ryland lines knew about each other.

These three men neighboring each other has spawned a lot of confusion about family relationships.

To settle matters, go to the Paul Ryland post and scroll down to the very bottom.

Transitional Deed

This deed is important because it links John Ryland with Berks County and Bedford County. He did not move off to points unknown in Tennessee or Kentucky or elsewhere.

March 27, 1790

Cumru Township, Berks County, and Hopewell Township, Bedford County. This deed is very long – unusually long, but it is full of useful information about John and his father Paul. John Ryland, eldest son of Paul (now deceased) and Louisa Ryland, lives in Bedford County and sells Paul’s property in Berks County, to Michael Meyer for eight hundred and sixty-one pounds and ten shillings. It shows the chain of ownership of Paul’s land, that is, who owned it long before he got it, and who sold it until it got to him.

Summary of the deed at a glance:

Recall that Paul died before March 2, 1789, and Louisa (John’s mother) died in 1790, between May 10 and June 7. (She made and signed her will on May 10, 1790, which was proved on June 7, 1790, citing her as deceased.) So a little before she died, her son John sold the property.

The indenture specifies that Paul left behind eight children in all, in this order: John, Rebecca, James, William, Andrew, Mary, Rachel, Henry; Sarah is also named, but she predeceased her father. This means that there were not nine children, at the moment Paul died. But it also means there are only nine in total, including Sarah.

The indenture says that Susanna (Kissinger or Kiesinger), wife of John, appeared before the court on March 21, 1791, and swore that she had not been coerced or compelled to go along with the sale (standard procedure for land sales). So she is still his wife by that date. No word on a Kate, possibly his second wife.

What are being sold in the indenture are five tracts, pieces, or parcels of land, which Paul Ryland had acquired in Cumru Township, Berks County, on these dates: February 23, 1771 (first three tracts of land, listed below); November 2, 1779 (fourth tract of land); October 10, 1787 (fifth tract of land). We can be sure that Paul and Louisa built their home on one of the first three tracts. The first two border Tulpehocken Creek, which looks like a river in this link: http://www.flyfishpa.net/Streams/Tully.htm

  1. 91 acres and 7 perches (Feb. 23, 1771)
  2. 5 acres and 118 perches (same date)
  3. 3 acres and 35 perches (same date)
  4. 10 acres (Nov. 2, 1779)
  5. 35 acres (Oct. 10, 1787)

1 Perch = 1 rod = 5.50 yards = 16.5 feet = 5.029 meters

The indenture itself reads:

This Indenture made the twenty-seventh day of March in the year of our Lord, one thousand and seven hundred and ninety, between John Reiland, of the township of Hopewell, in the County of Bedford, in the State of Pennsylvania, yeoman, and Susanna his wife of the one part, and Michael Meyer of the Township of Cumru in the County of Berks in the State of Pennsylvania, aforesaid yeoman of the other part.

Whereas, by force and virtue of some good conveyances and assurances in the law duly had and executed a certain Paul Reiland (the father [of] aforenamed John Reiland) became in his lifetime lawfully seized in his demesne, of fee, of and in five certain tracts, pieces or parcels of land, the same are situate, lying and being in the township of Cumru aforesaid bounded and described, respectively, as follows, viz:

One of them beginning at a marked white oak standing on Tulpehocken Creek, thence by George Boon’s land south sixty-two degrees west eighty-seven perches to a post thence south seventy-one degrees west eighty-five perches to a post thence south sixty degrees west fifteen perches and a half to a black oak; thence northwest twenty-four perches and a half to a post thence by Anthony Morris’s land north forty-four degrees east two hundred and thirty-two perches to a marked hickory standing on the said Tulpehocken Creek thence down the same on the several courses thereof one hundred and twelve perches to the place of beginning, containing ninety-one acres and seven perches and the usual allowance of six acres percent for roads, etc.

[Which said tract of land being granted by the honorable the Proprietaries of Pennsylvania, etc. by their patent or grant under their marks and seals, bearing date the 9th day of November 1758, recorded at Philadelphia in Patent Book A, vol. 20, page 210, etc., unto James Kiemer, his heirs and assigns forever, under the yearly Quit Rent aforesaid and by the said recited patent is reserved, may more fully appear; who with Elizabeth his wife by Indenture, dated first day of April 1762, recorded at in Book A, vol. 6, pages 162, 163, & 164

Did grant the said tract of land unto Henry Fry, under the Quit Rent aforesaid, as may appear; who with Catharina his wife, by their Indenture dated 21st day of January 1760, recorded at Reading in Book A, vol. 6, pages 164-165, etc., did grant the said tract of land unto Henry Fidler, under the Quit Rent aforesaid, as may fully appear.]

One other of them beginning at a marked white oak standing on the southeasterly bank of Tulpehocken Creek thence down the said Creek on the several courses thereof twenty-two perches to a post for a corner thence by land of Ludwig Held south eighty-five degrees and a half west fifty-one perches to a heap of stones for a corner thence by other land of Henry Fidler north sixty degrees east forty-two perches to the place of beginning, containing five acres and one hundred and eighteen perches of land.

And one other of them beginning at a Spanish oak corner thence by land of the aforesaid Henry Fidler north forty-seven degrees west forty perches and a half to a post in line of land of Thomas Youngman thence along the same south forty-three degrees west thirteen perches and six-tenth parts of a perch to a post a corner of other land of the said Ludwig Held thence by the same, south forty-seven degrees east thirty-five perches and a half to a post thence by the same south sixty degrees west fourteen perches and two-tenth parts of a perch to the place of beginning, containing three acres and thirty-five perches of land.

[The same two last described tracts being part of a tract of 216 acres and allowance which the the [sic] Proprietaries of Pennsylvania aforesaid by their patent dated the 14th day of July 1749, recorded at Philadelphia in Book A, vol. 14, page 202, etc., did grant to the aforenamed James Kiemer, in fee; who with Elizabeth his wife by their Indenture dated the first day of April 1762, recorded at Reading in Book A, vol. 5, page 11, etc., did grant the same unto the aforenamed Henry Frey, in fee, who with Catharine his wife by their Indenture dated the 10th day of May 1765, recorded at Reading in Book A, page, 13 etc., did grant the same unto Michael Schouer, in fee; who with Elizabeth Catharina his wife by their Indenture, dated the 23rd day of March 1769, did grant the same unto Ludwig Held, in fee; who with Mary Magdalena his wife by their Indenture [crossed out, caret] Deed of Exchange dated the 13th day of March [crossed out, caret] November 1770, recorded at Reading in Book A, vol. 6, page 31st etc., did grant the said last two described tracts unto the aforenamed Henry Fidler, under and subject to certain exceptions, covenants, clauses, and conditions in the said Deed of Exchange mentioned may appear; who with Magdalena his wife by their Indenture dated the 23rd day of February 1771, recorded at Reading in Book P, page 193, etc., did grant the said herein before three described tracts of land unto the above named Paul Reiland, in fee.]

One other of them beginning at a post in a line of Christian Stattyfoor’s (?) land thence extending by the same north fifty degrees west fifty-seven perches to a stone forty degrees west twenty-eight perches and one-tenth of a perch to a stone thence by land of John Morris fifty degrees east fifty-seven perches to a stone and Ludwig Held’s land north forty degrees east twenty-eight perches and one-tenth of a perch to the place of beginning, containing ten acres of land, be the same, more or less (the same being part of a tract of land of 500 acres, which the Proprietaries of Pennsylvania aforesaid by their patent dated as therein mentioned, recorded at Philadelphia in Book G, vol. 12, page 120 etc., did grant the same unto Anthony Morris and Stephen Armitt, in fee. Said Stephen Aimitt [sic] by his last Will and Testament duly proven and remaining in the Register’s Office at Philadelphia, empowered his executors, his wife Sarah and his brother John Armitt, to sell his moiety of said tract of land, who accordingly by their Indenture dated the 10th day of July 1752, did grant the same unto the aforesaid Anthony Morris, the other tenant in fee, who by his last Will and Testament dated 29th day of September 1760 did devise (among others) that all his real estate if not otherwise disposed should be divided between the devisees and legatees in said Will named, of which undisposed estate the aforesaid tract were part; whereupon a writ of partition was brought in the Court of Common Pleas of Berks County, aforesaid, as by the Records of said Court will appear August term the 8th year of the reign of George 3rd  [reigned 1760-1820], when accordingly partition was made and awarded Anthony

Anthony Morris and Elizabeth his wife, Samuel Morris and Hannah his wife, and Anthony Junior by their Indenture dated 4th day of April 1769, recorded at Reading in Book A, vol. 6, page 89, etc., did grant two described tracts unto Thomas Youngman, being part of the original 500 acres; who with Catharina his wife by their Indenture dated the 19th day of December 1769 did grant the same unto John Garver and who, being so seized of the same, died intestate.

And whereas on the partition of John Garver, eldest son and heir at law of the said John Garber [sic], deceased, prepared a partition to an Orphan’s Court at Reading, for the County of Berks aforesaid to the trustees of the said Court, setting forth as therein, is set forth and upon the return of the Sheriff and an inquest, awarded to value the premises of said deceased, etc. And whereupon the Court adjudged said land to be the property of said John Garver, eldest son of said John Garver, deceased, as in and by the records and proceedings of said Court, reference being thereunto had fully will appear; who with Anna Maria his wife by their Indenture dated 2nd day of November 1779, recorded at Reading in Book A, vol. 7, page 164, etc., did grant the same unto Gotlieb Christine (?), in fee; who with Mary his wife by their Indenture dated the 17th day of November 1784, recorded at Reading in Book P, page 196, etc., did grant the same unto the above named Paul Reiland, in fee.]

And one other being the last of the above mentioned five tracts, adjoining lands of the said John Garver, John Schmucker and others, containing thirty-five acres or thereabouts, be the same, more or less. [It is the same tract of land which Peter Filbert, Esquire, High Sheriff of the County of Berks, aforesaid, by his Deed Poll, dated the 6th day of October 1787, did grant unto the above named Paul Reiland according to the Acts of the General Assembly, in such case made and provided as in and by the Records of the Court of Common Pleas of the County of Berks, aforesaid, may more fully appear.]

And the said Paul Reiland, being so seized of the said above mentioned and described tracts, pieces, or parcels of ninety-one acres and seven perches, and five acres and one hundred and eighteen perches, and three acres and thirty-five perches, and ten acres, and thirty-five acres of land with their and each and every of their appurtenances, died intestate, leaving ____ eight children, (to wit): John Reiland (party herto?), Rebecca the wife of Peter Foulke, James, William, Andrew, Mary, Rachel, and Henry, and the one granddaughter named Mary, the daughter of Sarah Kemery [Kemere], deceased, by Christian, which said Sarah was also one of the daughters of the said Paul Reiland, deceased, as may appear.

And whereas, just proceedings were had in the Orphans Court of the County of Berks, aforesaid, the thirteenth day of March last ____? And at divers other days and times relating  to the real estate of the said intestate that the same, having been first duly valued and appreciated by an inquest awarded by the said Court, was by the said Court adjudged to the said John Reiland, eldest son and heir at law, of the said intestate ____? The same (?) to him, his heirs and assigns forever, he (?) paying or securing to be paid to the other children and representatives of the same intestate their respective shares of such valuation according to law, as in and by the records and proceedings of said Court ____ being thereunto had more fully and at large appears. And the said John Reiland, having given security with the approbation of the said Court for the payment of the shares and dividends, aforesaid.

Now this Indenture witnesseth that the said John Reiland and Susanna his wife, for and in consideration of the sum of eight hundred and sixty-one pounds and ten [sic] shillings, lawful money of Pennsylvania, to them in-hand (?) paid by the said Michael Meyer, at and before the unsealing and delivery here of the receipt whereof the said John Reiland and Susanna his wife do hereby acknowledge and thereof acquit (?) and forever discharge the said Michael Meyer, his heirs, executors, and administrators by these presents, do grant, bargain, sell _____ _____ release and confirm unto the said Michael Meyer, his heirs, and assigns the said above mentioned and described five tracts, pieces or parcels of ninety-one acres and seven perches, and five acres and one hundred and eighteen perches, and three acres and thirty-five perches and ten acres, and thirty-five acres of lands, together with all and singular the buildings, improvements, other the houses, out-houses, barns, stables, fences, ways, woods, waters, water courses, rights, liberties, privileges, hereditaments and appurtenances whatsoever thereunto belonging or in anywise appertaining on the reverse and remainders, rents _____ and profits thereof, and also all the estate rights, titles, interest, property, claims, and demand (?) whatsoever of the said John Reiland and Susanna his wife in law or equity or otherwise howsoever of, into, or out of the same, to have and to hold the said above mentioned and described five tracts, pieces or parcels of ninety-one acres and seven perches, and five acres and one hundred and eighteen perches, and three acres and thirty-five perches, and ten acres, and thirty-five acres of land, hereditaments, and premises hereby granted or mentioned or intended so to be with the appurtenances unto the said Michael Meyer, his heirs and assigns, to the only proper _____ and behoof of the said Michael Meyer, his heirs, and assigns forever, under and subject always nevertheless, to all and singular, the exceptions, provisos, clauses, covenants and restrictions mentioned and contained in the said above recited Deed of Exchange.

And to all and singular the covenants, grants, provisos, clauses and restrictions mentioned and contained in a certain Indenture made between the said and above named Henry Fidler and Magdalena his wife of the one part and a certain William Miller of the other part, bearing date the first day of December in the year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and seventy; particularly of and concerning the said William Miller, his heirs, and assigns, right of overflowing part of the hereby granted premises by damming up the water in Tulpehocken Creek, aforesaid, which or [is?] as follows (to wit): free right, liberty, privilege, use and advantage of raising, damming, and _____  the water in the said Tulpehocken Creek over part of his the said Henry Fidler’s tract of land in Cumru township, on the south side of the said Creek (then) in the tenure and occupation of Paul Reiland and that as high and in such manner as the lord William Miller, his heirs, and assigns shall from time to time and at all times think fit and necessary for the use of the said mill or mills. And also to the proportionable part or parts of the Property _____ yearly Quit Rent or Rents now due or hereafter to become due and payable for the same, to the chief lord or lords of the fee thereof.

And the said John Reiland for himself, his heirs, executors, and administrators doth (?) covenant, promise, grant, and agree to and with the said Michael Meyer, his heirs and assigns, by these presents that he the said John Reiland and his heirs, the said above mentioned and described five tracts, pieces or parcels of ninety-one acres and seven perches, and five acres and one hundred and eighteen perches, and three acres and thirty-five perches, and ten acres, and thirty-five acres of land (except as it is herein before excepted) hereditaments and premises hereby granted or mentioned or intended so to be with the appurtenances unto the said Michael Meyer, his heirs and assigns, against him the said John Reiland and his heirs and against all and every other person and persons whomsoever lawfully claiming or to claim by, from, or under him, them or any of them shall and will warrant and forever defend by these presents.

And further that he the said John Reiland and his heirs and all and every other person or persons lawfully claiming or to claim by, from, or under him or any of them shall and will from time to time and at all times hereafter upon the reasonable request and at the proper costs and charges in the law of the said John Reiland and his heirs and make, do, and execute or cause and procure to be made, done, and executed all and every such further and other lawful and reasonable act or acts, deed or deeds, device or devices in the law whatsoever, for the further, better, more perfect and absolute assurance and confirmation of the said above mentioned and described five tracts, pieces, or parcels of ninety-one acres and seven perches, and five acres and one hundred and eighteen perches, and three acres and thirty-five perches, and ten acres, and thirty-five acres of land (except as it is herein before excepted) hereditaments and premises hereby granted, mentioned or intended so to be with the appurtenances unto the said Michael Meyer, his heirs, and assigns as by him or them or by his or their counsel, learned in the law, shall be reasonably advised, devised or required.

In witness whereof, the said parties to these presents have hereunto interchangeably set their hands and seals, dated the day and year first within written:

John Ryland seal Susanna Reiland seal sealed and delivered in the presence of _____ _____, John (?) Kantner, and sealed and delivered by Susanna Ryland in the presence of Josiah Espye, George Woods — Received the day of the date of the within

within [sic] written Indenture of the within named Michael Meyer, the within mentioned sum of eight hundred and sixty-one pounds and ten shillings, in specie, it being the consideration money within mentioned in full, I say (?) recd (?) _____ John Ryland, £861.19 s. [sic] Witness present at signing _____ _____ Berks County ss.

Be it remembered that on the twenty-seventh day of March, anno seal domini 1790, came before me the subscriber, one of the Justices of the Peace of the Court of Common Pleas for said County, the within named John Reiland, and acknowledged the within written Indenture to be his act and deed and devised that the same might be recorded as such according to law.

Witness my hand and seal the day and year aforesaid. John Otto —- Bedford County ss.

On the twenty-first day of March anno domini 1791. Personally came before me the subscriber, President of the Court of Common Pleas in and for the County of Bedford aforesaid, the within named Susanna (wife of the above named John Ryland) and acknowledged the within and above written Indenture to be her act and deed, she the said Susanna being of full age and first privately and apart from her husband by me examined, she, being acquainted with the contents thereof, declared she executed the same freely and voluntarily without any coercion or compulsion from her said husband.

Witness my hand and seal etc. George Woods seal

Recorded and this record and the original compared found to agree exactly, on the 16th day of December anno domini 1795.

Transcription ends.

Here is a list of John’s siblings included in the lengthy deed. The relevant paragraph:

And the said Paul Reiland … died intestate, leaving ____ eight children, (to wit): John Reiland (party hereto?), Rebecca the wife of Peter Foulke, James, William, Andrew, Mary, Rachel, and Henry, and the one granddaughter named Mary, the daughter of Sarah Kemery [Kemere], deceased, by Christian, which said Sarah was also one of the daughters of the said Paul Reiland, deceased ….

Note how it specifies eight at the time of Paul’s death.

John (eldest son and petitioner)

Rebecca (wife of Peter Foulke)

James

William

Andrew

Mary (minor)

Rachael (minor)

Henry (minor)

Mary (Paul’s granddaughter, daughter of Sarah, deceased, and of Christian Kemery)

Presumably John’s sister Elizabeth (b. 1756) died in infancy.

September 28, 1799

Hopewell Township, Bedford County. John Ryland buys eighty acres from Joseph Shoup, for £130.00.

Shoup & wife

to

Ryland

This Indenture made the twenty eighth day of September in the year of our lord [sic] one thousand seven hundred and Ninety nine Between Joseph Shoup of the Township of Hopewell in in [sic] the County of Bedford and Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Mill Wright and Mary Magdalen his wife of the one Part and John Ryland of the same Place yeoman of the other Part

Witnesseth that the said Joseph Shoup for and in Consideration of the sum of one hundred and thirty pounds of Good and Lawful money unto him in hand paid by the said John Ryland at and immediately before the sealing and Delivery hereof the receipt whereof is hereby acknowledged and thereof and therefrom do acquit and Discharge the said John Ryland his heirs and assigns forever by these presents  I the said Joseph Shoup and Mary Magdalen my wife for the Consideration aforesaid have; granted, bargained, sold, Conveyed, and Confirmed; And by [be] [sic] these presents do absolutely grant, bargain sell release, Covey [sic] and Confirm, unto unto [sic] the said John Ryland and to his heirs and assigns forevr [sic]—  A Certain Plantation and Tract of Land situate in Hopewell Township Bedford County and state of Pennsylvania aforesaid

Beginning at a black Oak on the [rays town Current] of Juniata and runing [sic] thence by Philip Stoners land South twenty degrees East Thirty nine Perches to a white oak thence South nine Degrees East Ninety two perches to a white oak thence South sixty Degrees East eighty two perches to a white oak thence North three [De]grees East one hundred and fifty four perches [careted in:] /to a post/ thence up the said river North sixty Eight Degrees West ninety two perches to a post thence South forty four Degrees West thirty one perches to the Place of Beginning Containing Eighty acres and allowance of six per cent for Roads P’r it being the same Tract or piece of Land which Sebastian Shoup Late of Hopewell Township Deceased did by his Last Will and Testament did Bequeath unto his son the said Joseph and Conveyed to the said the said [sic] Joseph Shoup by his Brother Henry Shoup Executor to the Last Will and Testament of the said Sebastian Shoup and Barbara his wife by Deed bearing date the thirteenth day of May in the year of Lord [sic] one thousand seven hundred and Ninety nine relation thereunto being had fully and at Large appear

Together with all and singular the rights Members and appurtenances Whatsoever hereunto belonging or in any wise Appertaining and the Reversions and Remainders; [R]ents, [Houses], and Profits thereof and all the estate [R]ight Title Interest property Claim and Demand Whatsoever of in and to the same and every part and parcel thereof To have and to hold the aforesaid Eighty Acres [careted in:] /and allowance/ of Land above Described with the title In Proportion Hereditament and premises hereby Released conveyed and Confirmed unto the said John Ryland his heirs and assigns to the only proper use benefit and [beh___] of the said John Ryland his heirs and assigns forever.

And the said Joseph Shoup and Mary Magdalen his wife for themselves and their heirs do Covenant Promise and Grant to and with the said John Ryland his heirs and assigns that the aforesaid Eighty acres with the Appurtenances unto the said John Ryland his heirs and assigns against him the said Joseph Shoup and Mary Magdalen his wife and their heirs and against all and against all [sic] and every person or persons whatsoever lawfully Claiming said Premises or any part thereof by from or under him her them or any of them shall and will Warrant and forever Defend by these presents

In Witness whereof the said Joseph Shoup and Mary Magdalen his wife hath [sic] hereunto set their hands and seals the day and year first above Written

Signed sealed & Delivered in the presence of

Amos Evans

Samuel Erwin

Joseph Shoup [seal]

Mary Magdalen (X) Shoup [seal]

Bedford County ss

The Fifth day of October in the year of our Lord one thousand Seven hundred and Ninety Nine before Me Amos Evans one of the Justices of the Peace in and for said County personally came and appeared the within named Joseph Shoup and Mary Magdalen his wife and acknowledged the within written Indenture to be their act and Deed and [Desired] the same to be recorded as such the said Mary Magdalen being of full age [&] secretly and apart from her Husband by me Examined and the Contents thereof first Made Known unto her she voluntarily thereunto consented   Witness my hand and Seal the day and year aforesaid

Amos Evans

Received on the day of the date of the within Written Indenture from the within Named John Ryland the sum of one hundred and thirty Pounds being the full Consideration money within mentioned Rec’d p’r me

Witness

Amos Evans

Samuel Erwin

Joseph Shoup

Recorded & Compared with the Original the 20th of February 1801.

Jacob Bonnett, Recorder

Transcription ends.

1800 Census

Bedford County

John’s daughter Magdalena

John’s census record poses only one problem for his known children. His daughter Magdalena should be placed in the “10-16” column. This is a clerical error. Another option is that she got married when the census was taken, so the other girl could be a ward or an apprentice.

1800 Census of the United States

Hopewell and Woodberry Township, Bedford County,

Pennsylvania

Head of Family Free White Males Free White Females
Under 10 10-16 45 + Under 10 45 +
John Reyland 2 1 1 2 1

1800 Census of the United States

Hopewell Woodberry Township, Bedford County

Pennsylvania

Head of Family Free White Males Free White Females
Under 10 10-16 26-45 Under 10 16-26
James Reyland 3 1 1 2 1

http://files.usgwarchives.net/pa/bedford/census/1800/p61a-70a.txt (scroll down to “written page 433”).

If these census data are accurate (and too often they are not), then John could be born in 1754/55 at the latest, and so would his wife. John’s father Paul came over from Germany in 1750. So his arrival date and John’s supposed birth years (1754/55) work out or do not pose unsolvable problems.

A Case Heard by the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania

September 28, 1805 to October 1808.

Bedford County. This case involves a dispute over land. John Ewing, James Ryland, and John Ryland two brothers and sons of (deceased) Paul Ryland, are the defendants. The Shoup family figures prominently in Bedford County. At the very end, the summary says who won. Significantly, the court case shows a close relationship between John Ryland and John Ewing. Ryland’s son William and Ewing’s daughter Catherine get married in about late 1813 or early 1814.

At a Circuit Court Held at Bedford, October 1808.

The following is taken from the “Reports of Cases Adjudged in the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania: With Some Selected Cases at Nisi Prius, and in the Circuit Courts, Vol. IV” by the honorable Jasper Yeates, published in 1819.

Lessee of Charles COXE et al [and other persons] against John EWING, James RYLAND, John RYLAND, Henry STROUP, and Felix MILLER. (Pages 429-433).

Ejectment for 560 acres of land on the south side of Juniata [River].

The plaintiff claimed under a warrant to Gabriel PETERSON, for 200 acres of land, on the south side of Juniata, including two Deer Licks, about four miles below the mouth of Yellow Creek, dated 20th September 1762; also under another warrant to Samuel JOHNSTON, dated 25th October 1765, including part of Gabriel PETERSON’S improvement, and adjoining land granted to the said PETERSON, below the mouth of Yellow Creek, whereon interest was to commence from the 1st March 1760. A survey without date, of 560 acres, was made by Richard TEA, D.S., said therein to be six miles below the mouth of Yellow Creek, which was returned into the surveyor general’s office on the 19th March 1791.

No evidence was given of PETERSON’s improvement, nor of any remarkable Deer Licks on the land; though it was shewn [sic] that there were several saltish ponds in the different bends of Juniata.

The defendants claimed under two ancient settlements made in 1763 and 1764, by William SPARKES and Robert FRIGGS, regularly continued to the present time, when uninterrupted by Indian hostilities. They also claimed under the following legal titles:

An application in the name of the said William SPARKES, dated 6th February 1767, for one hundred acres on the south side of the Raystown Branch of Juniata, including his improvement, upon which a survey of 108 acres and 46 perches was made on the 3d August 1786, by George WOODS, and a patent, dated 24 November 1787, was issued thereon to Philip STONER, in consideration of £15.3.0. Pennsylvania currency.

Also an application in the name of Robert FRIGGS, dated 2d March 1767, for 200 acres of the Raystown Branch of Juniata including his improvement, between Frederick FOUNDER and William SPARKES; upon which a survey was made in the summer of 1777 by Thomas SMITH and a patent dated 4th March 1797, was issued to Henry SHOUP executor of Sebastian SHOUP to and for the uses declared in his will.

Also a warrant in the name of Philip STONER, dated 26th October 1773, for 100 acres adjoining his other land on the south side of Raystown Branch, and a conditional line made between William SPARKES and Robert FRIGGS, upon which £8.60.0. was paid on the same day into the office of the receiver general.

The counsel for the defendants having given in evidence to the jury the legal titles aforesaid upon which they relied, offered to shew [sic] by parol [sic] testimony the actual settlements of the aforesaid William SPARKES and Robert FRIGGS, commenced in 1763 or 1764, and continued without intermission, unless the inhabitants were driven from their habitation by the alarms of the savages.

This testimony was excepted to on the part of the plaintiff. The applications of SPARKES and FRIGGS filed in 1767, do not subject them to pay interest from the times of their supposed improvements respectively. By filing them, they severally abandon ipso facto all equity under the settlements. It has frequently been determined, both at Nisi Prius and in the Circuit Courts, that no man shall be permitted to defraud the late proprietaries or the commonwealth, by not ascertaining truly the time of his improvement in warrant, and retain his right of pre-emption from an earlier period, than he has himself stated. The court have said that overruling such evidence tends to good morals; and the present case is within the principle of all the decisions on the subject.

The defendants counsel answered: interest is never calculated back on applications. The practice of filing them first obtained in proprietary land office in 1766, at which time the consideration money to be paid for taking up lands, was charged from £15.10.0. currency for every one hundred acres, and one penny sterling quit rent per acre.

It would be highly unjust that one should suffer in his claim to lands by reason of his conformity to the regulations of the proprietary officers, over whom he had not contoul [sic]. The parties here mentioned their respective improvements, and cannot therefore by supposed to have abandoned them. The cases which have been decided, have been, in the instances of warrants, wherein no improvements have been stated; or if stated, the times of making them have been fraudulently postponed, which forms an essential difference between those cases and the present. Besides this testimony is offered in behalf of defendants, who may shew [sic] a title in any stranger, to preclude the plaintiff from recovering the lands in dispute.

The plaintiff replied: notwithstanding the introduction of the applications in 1766, the practice of taking out warrants to secure prior pre-emption rights was not thereby supposed. Of this we offer three instances to the court, which have been discovered in the office of the deputy surveyor of this district on a slight search since this argument began. (These warrants for lands on the west side of the Susquehannah [River] were produced, wherein improvements were called for severally dated 1767, interest to commence from the previous period.) To this practice SPARKS [sic] and FRIGGS should have honestly conformed, if they meant to secure their rights by improvements, and fairly pay for them to the paramount lords of the fee. Mentioning an improvement in an application is mere matter of further description, and has always been so understood. Nothing more certain than that a in the mode of obtaining an office right in general cases, cannot very the rights of the owners of the land, or discharge a party, who by uniform usage was bound to pay interest from the time of his improvement from such obligation. Such a change in the relative duties of individuals could never have been intended by the late proprietaries; nor did they so readily part with their interests.

By the court. The present case is certainly allied in point of principle to our former decisions on this subject; and in some cases testimony of a similar nature has been overruled, though offered on the part of the defendants. Whether applications filed should be distinguished from warrants in the particular under consideration is now to be determined. The regulations of the land office in 1766 seems to have blended the proprietary interests with those of the poorer class of the community, who might not have ready cash to advance for the purpose of taking out warrants, but who by the addition of their labor to the value of the soil, would give a permanent security for the payment of consideration money. The new institutions, however, cannot be regarded as a variation of the rights of the proprietaries or the duties of individuals; and I concur in opinion with the plaintiff’s counsel that the insertion of an improvement in an application is nothing more than a designation of the place intended to be located. The instances produced of warrants taken out in 1767, with others which I recollect to have seen of the like kind, evince to me fully the mode of procedure, when improvements previous thereto were intended to be secured. The old consideration and quit-rents are specified therein, as the terms on which such warrants issued.

It follows therefore that such improvements cannot be adduced to establish a title to the lands anterior to such application. But may they not be given in evidence to shew [sic] that the plaintiffs’ survey could not legally take effect? The time of making it is not inserted in the return, which is a suspicious circumstance, and a departure from the uniform method pursued in such cases. JOHNSTON’s warrant was dated in October 1765; and the surveys on both warrants having been made at the same time, it must necessarily have been done after that period. But such a survey, if it included the real bona fide settlements of third persons, would not have received the sanction of the land office, or of the county, from their uniform usages. It is true that by going into this testimony, the defendants will derive a degree of benefit from improvements, the equity of which they seem to have abandoned; but this appears inevitable, and flows as a necessary consequence from the investigation of the validity of the survey made for the plaintiffs. In this point of light, I view the evidence as admissible.

The counsel for the plaintiff desired that the point might be noted, and reserved for further discussion, if it should become necessary, which was accordingly done.

The testimony was fully gone into, and the facts opened by the defendants’ counsel were clearly established thereby.

The defendant’s counsel offered in evidence the deposition of George NAGEL, taken under a commission issued to the state of Ohio.

This was objected to, because the 44th rule of practice in the Circuit Court is that written notice of the commission should have been served on the adverse party at least fifteen days before the commission issued, which was not complied with in the present instance.

It appeared upon examination that the interrogatories were filed on the 28th September 1805; notice given thereof on the 30th September and the commission issued on the 14th October 1805.

The court considered the commission as having improvidently issued, and suppressed by the deposition.

Several marked trees were blocked on the different lines claimed by the contending parties, and evidence was given to the jury of the ages of those marks, from the annual growth of the trees; the jury, however, were desirous of seeing the blocks of those trees in order to account the growth for themselves. Whereupon Henry PUTT was offered to prove that the blocks, which he produced in court, were those which had been cut from the trees by the order of William PIPER, the surveyor.

He was objected to, as an interested witness, it being acknowledged that he claimed was in the actual possession of lands, holding under the survey, set up by the plaintiff.

Sed per cur. He is adduced as a witness to the court, to prove a collateral fact, viz. the identity of certain blocks, which being established to their satisfaction, the blocks were permitted to go to the jury for their inspection. This is analogous to proving where certain papers were found, or the entries in a day book, which may be done by a party to the suit. Besides, is not PUTT a competent witness on legal principles? He may be interested in the question now trying, but cannot be affected by the event of this suit. The objection according to modern decisions, which we have adopted, goes merely to his credibility.

At the instance of the defendants’ counsel, this point was reserved for future discussion.

Verdict for the defendants. Messrs Duncan, Woods, and Brown, pro quer. Messrs. J. and S. Riddle, pro def.

Transcription ends.

Source: St. Clair’s Bedford: the History and Genealogy of Bedford County, Pennsylvania, vol. 13, no. 2, pp. 19-22.

Recap: John’s Brothers in Bedford County

Recall that John, James, Andrew, William and Henry appear in Paul’s probate records, back in Berks County. William resided and died there in 1816. However, the four other brothers resided close by in Bedford County. Later, they moved off in various directions.

1791: John Ryland and James Ryland appear in the tax list, Hopewell Township, Bedford County; John pays state tax 1 shilling and county tax 9 pence; James pays state tax 5 shillings, 5 cents and county tax: 3 shillings, 11 pence.

1794 May 16: James Ryland buys 400 acres surveyed on that date, Bedford County.

1795 Feb 16: John Reiland, James Reiland, and Andrew Reiland appear in tax list, Hopewell Township, Bedford County; John pays 2 shillings, 10 pence; James pays 6 shillings, 6 pence; and Andrew pays 11 shillings, 6 pence.

1796: John Ryland and James Ryland appear in the tax list, Hopewell, Bedford; John has 160 acres, one house, 1 cabin roof (?), 23 acres of clear land, 1 horse, 1 cow, all of which is valued at $400.00, and taxed at $2.50; James has 160 acres, 1 house, 1 barn, 60 acres, 4 horses, 2 cows, all of which is valued at $500.00, taxed at $2.50.

1799 John Ryland and James Ryland appear in tax list, Hopewell, Bedford County; John has 160 acres, 1 house, 1 barn, 20 acres of clear land, 2 horses, 4 cattle, all of which is valued at $466.00, and taxed at $1.17; James has 108 acres, 1 house, 1 barn, 50 acres of clear land, 2 horses, 3 cattle, all of which is valued at $398.00, and taxed at $1.00.

1800 John Ryland and James Ryland appear as neighbors in the census, Hopewell and Woodberry Township, Bedford County.

1802 John Ryland and James Ryland appear in a tax list, Hopewell Township, Bedford County; John pays $1.20; James pays $2.10.

1804 John Ryland and Henry Ryland appear in tax list. Hopewell Township, Bedford County; John has 80 acres in a deed; 1 house; 45 lots (?); 2 horses; 2 cows; all of which is valued at $777.00 and taxed at $1.93; Henry has no land or house, 1 lot (?) — cattle; all of which is valued at $.15.

1805 John Ryland, James Ryland, and Henry Ryland appear in tax list, Hopewell Township, Bedford County; John pays $1.93; James $2.45, and Henry $.15.

1805 Sep 28 to Oct 1808: Case heard before the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania, Lessee of Charles Coxe et al. v. John Ewing, James Ryland, and John Ryland.

1807 Feb 21: John Ryland, James Ryland, and Henry Ryland appear in tax list, Hopewell Township, Bedford County. John is crossed off list, indicating he has moved; he next appears in 1808 tax list, Hopewell Township, Huntingdon County (two different townships in two adjacent counties); James is also crossed off; Henry pays S.60.

1810 Henry Ryland appears in the census, Hopewell Township, Bedford County

1811 Henry Ryland appears in tax list, Hopewell Township, Bedford County; he is an innkeeper; has 23 acres in a patent; 1 house, 1 cattle, all of which is valued at $254.00, and taxed at $.02.

Stage 4: Huntingdon County

This is where John finishes out his life, dying before February 9, 1814, per his sparse probate papers.

Tax Lists

These lists are from the married freemen’s pages. The value of the estate (or the taxable items) decline from 1808 to 1816.

1808

Assessment of Hopewell Township for 1808

Amt of tax on Resident Property $277.93

Unresidend [sic] Land tax is $36.53

Posted into Land Ledger Per J Dorland, clk

A B C D E F G H I J K L
Ryland John 100 8 1 1 2 $250.00 65
A= Acres of Land; B = Rates; C = Grist Mills; D = Saw Mills; E = Distilleries; F = Negroes; G = Horses; H = Cows; I = Occupation; J = Valuation; K = Dollars; L = Cents (i.e. the tax)

1809

Return of Property Hopewell Twp 1809

Assessment of Hopewell Township 1809

A B C D E F G H I
Ryland John 100 8 1 2 1 $250.00
A= Acres of Land; B = Rates; C = Horses; D = H[ead of] Cattle; E = Grist Mills; F = Saw Mills; G = Occupation; H = Negroes; I = Valuation; J = Dollars; K = Cents (i.e. the tax); no tax was photographed, but presumably it was the same or nearly the same as the one in 1808

1810

Assessment of Hopewell Township for 1810

Amt of tax on Resident Tax $245.51

Posted into Land Ledger Per J Dorland, clk

[in margin:] Quota $277.18

A B C D E F G H I J
Ryland John 100 8 1 2 1 $250.00 57
A= Acres; B = Rates; C = Horses; D = H[ead of] cattle; E = Distilleries; F = Occupations; G = Saw Mills; H = Valuation; I = Dollars; J = Cents (i.e. the tax)

1811

Assessment of Hopewell Township for 1811

Amt of Resident Tax $284.95

Unseated [Unsealed?] Land of Hopewell Township

Posted into Land Ledger Per J Dorland

A B C D E F G H I J K L
Ryland John 3 2 $100.00 38
A= Acres of Land; B = Rates; C = Grist Mills; D = Saw Mills; E = Distilleries; F = Horses; G = Chattles [sic]; H = Offices [sic]; I = Occupations; J = Valuation; K = Dollars; L = Cents (i.e. the tax)

1812

Assessment of Hopewell Township 1812

Posted into Land Ledger J McKennan

Hopewell Township A B C D E F G H
Ryland John 3 2 $106.00 38
A= Acres of Land; B = Rates; C = Horses; D = Hd Cattle; E = Occupations; F = Valuation; G  = Dollars; H = Cents (i.e. the tax)

1813

Assessment of Hopewell Township for 1813

Posted into Land Ledger Jno McKennan

Hopewell Township A B C D E F G H
Ryland John 3 2 $106.00 38
A= Acres of Land; B = Rates; C = Horses; D = Hd Cattle; E = Occupations; F = Valuation; G = Dollars; H = Cents (i.e. the tax); the column labels were the same as those of the 1812 table.

1814

John died before February 9, 1814. The assessment was taken in late winter or the spring. So his wife appears in this assessment as widow Ryland. Unfortunately, we still don’t know whether she is Susannah or Kate. Next, after John’s decease, his Inventory and Appraisement was taken on February 22, 1814 (see below). There is some gap between the valuation here ($110.00) and the final appraisement ($604.80). The reason is obvious. The assessment tax does not calculate everything on the property. Significantly, the Inventory and Appraisement mentions a landlord. So John did not own the land outright.

Hopewell Township for 1814
Hopewell Township A B C D E F G H I
Ryland Widow 2 3 $110.00 21
A= Acres of Land; B = Rates; C = Horses; D = Hd Cattle; E = Occupations; F = Distilleries; G = Valuation; H = Dollars; I = Cents (i.e. the tax); the cover page was not photographed.

1815

William makes it onto the married freemen’s list. He was not on the list in the previous year. In the tax roll, one name was crossed off, and his name was careted in. Therefore, he and Catherine Ewing got married after the assessment was taken in late winter and spring 1814. Their first child Mary Ann was born March 13, 1815. So they were married during after the assessment in winter-spring 1814 and before June 1814. On June 17, 1814, William’s father-in-law John Ewing sold William 160 acres for $315.87, in Richland County, Ohio. Maybe this was John Ewing’s way to help out the young couple, shortly after their marriage.

Further, the land and possessions here in Huntingdon County is paltry. William administered John’s estate by April Term 1815. The Inventory and Appraisement of John’s goods and crops is placed at the end of this post. It is now clear William is getting ready for his move to Ohio. He was busy selling his father’s possessions and loading up the wagon or wagons. His own family tradition says he arrived there in fall 1815. See the William Ryland Sr. post.

Finally, the widow’s property decreases dramatically, while William’s increases. Clearly, William is taking over. He is the administrator of his father’s estate, after all.

Hopewell Township for 1815
Hopewell Township A B C D E F G H I
Riland William 2 1 $95.00 10
Ryland Widow 2 3 $.10 2
A= Acres of Land; B = Rate per acre; C = Horses; D = Cattle; E = Occupations; F = Distilleries; G = Valuation; H = Dollars; I = Cents (i.e. the tax); the cover page was not photographed.

1816

Hopewell Township. H. S. Knapp’s History of Ashland County (Ohio), published in 1863, says William and his wife (unnamed in the book) and their baby Mary Ann arrived in Richland (later Ashland) County in fall 1815. William died in 1867, and the book was published four years before. Plus, it takes a while for an author to gather his information. Therefore, we should have no doubt that Knapp spoke to William personally. This tax record confirms the history book. “Removed” back then meant “moved away.” Incidentally, the 1820 Census out in Ohio shows a white female over 45 residing with William. This cannot be William’s wife Catherine who was born in 1794. Rather, it is most likely widow Ryland.

1816 Hopewell Township
1816 A B C D E F G H I
Names
Ryland Wm 2 1 Removed 00
Ryland Widow 1 Removed 00
A = Acres; B = Rate; C = Horses; D = Cattle; E = Distillery; F = Occupation; G = Valuation; H = Dollars; I = Cents
The names Wm Ryland and Widow Ryland and the number of horses and cows are crossed off, and “removed” is written in. This tax was written up after spring 1815, and before spring 1816, exactly the timeframe when William and widow moved away to Ohio.

William Ryland and the Single Freemen Tax

This table is a quick synopsis of the above information, with the added bonus of William appearing in the Single Freemen’s Tax List.

Return and Assessment Tax

Hopewell Township

Huntingdon County, Pennsylvania

Year Married Freemen Single Freemen
1808 John Ryland has 100 acres, 1 sawmill, 1 horse, and 2 cows; property valued at 250.00; tax – $.65
1809 John Ryland has 100 acres, 1 sawmill, 1 horse, and 2 cows; property valued at $250.00; tax – none recorded
1810 John Ryland resides on 100 acres, 1 sawmill, 1 horse, and 2 cows; property valued at $250.00; tax – $.57
1811 John Ryland owns 3 horses and 2 cows; property valued at $100.00 tax – $.38 William Ryland first appears (barely legible ink) . . . . $.50?
1812 John Ryland owns 3 horses, two cows, property valued at $106.00; tax – $.38 William Ryland . . . .  $.50
1813 John Ryland has 3 horses, 2 cows; property valued at $106.00; tax – $.38 William Ryland . . . . .  $.50
Before February 9, 1814, John Ryland died, per probate records
1814 Widow Ryland owns 2 horses, 3 cows; property valued at $110.00 – tax $.21 William Ryland . . . . .  $.50
1815 William Riland has 2 horses, 1 cow; property valued $95.00 – tax $.10

Widow Ryland: crossed out: 2 horses, 3 cows; property valued at $.10 – tax $.02

1816 William Ryland, 2 horses, one cow; “removed”

Widow Ryland 1 cow; “removed”

John’s Brothers in Huntingdon County

27 June 1791: Andrew Ryland buys 100 acres.

16 Jan 1792: James Ryland buys 80 acres, Hopewell Township, (date of return: 12 Dec. 1800, 77.100 acres).

http://www.footnote.com/image/3195350/Ryland/

It’s not clear that Andrew settled on his land. James might have done so. It is probable that John did not own land. He may have worked his brothers’ property. His Inventory and Appraisement, below, mentions a landlord, but not by name. But more research needs to be done.

These facts say seven important things:

  1. In the tax lists, the principals are of two generations: John and widow Ryland in the older generation; William in the younger.
  2. William was 21 years old in 1811, to appear on the single freemen’s list.
  3. They share the same surname: Ryland.
  4. William takes over the property, in 1815, after John dies (note his property increase and widow’s decrease).
  5. William got married after the tax was assessed in 1814 and before the tax was assessed in 1815 (see the William Ryland Sr. post for more discussion).
  6. Their taxes are paid in one township and one county: Hopewell, Huntingdon County, in the same timeframe (1808-1816).
  7. There are no other Rylands living in that specific location. John’s brothers James and Andrew never appear in the Hopewell Township tax lists. Though they owned property in Huntingdon County, they probably never settled it.

John Ryland’s Probate

February 9, 1814

Hopewell Township, Huntingdon County. In my experience with probate documents back then, it did not take all that long for probate to be initiated. So we should assume John died in early February or late January. This memorandum – a summary – says that William Ryland must take an Inventory of his deceased father’s estate, by March 12, and he must give an accounting of his administration by February 12, 1815 (or when the seal of office requires). It turns out the court approves of his administrative duties in April 1815.

John's Probate 1

Memorandum

William Ryland, Adm’r

of

John Ryland, Deceased

Memorandum Letters of Administration were this day granted to William Ryland of the Estate of John Ryland, Deceased, Inventory to be exhibited on or before the 12th day of March next and a Just and true account calculation and rekoning [sic] of his administration on or before the 12th day of February A.D. 1815 or when thereunto Required given under the seal of office. 9th Feb’y 1814

William Steel Reg’r

Transcription ends.

Inventory and Appraisement

February 22 and March 7, 1814

Huntingdon County. The Inventory and Appraisement looks at the crops, farm equipment, and personal property. In John’s case, two men traveled out to the farm and valued John’s property. It was done on February 22, and they swore to it on March 7.

Most significantly, John owned a Bible. He knew how to read and write, for he also signed his father’s probate papers. Maybe he or his wife recorded family history in it. The family probably took it to Ohio and perhaps on to Illinois. Does anyone out there have it? Would a Ryland / Riley descendant care to look in the attic?

No. 17

Inventory of John Ryland Dec’d

7 March 1814

$604.80

Inventory of the Estate of John Ryland, Deceased.

Inventory of the personal Estate of John Ryland late of Hopewell Township in the County of Huntingdon, deceased, taken the 22nd day of Feb’y 1814
1 Gray mare 50 00
1 Sorrel Ditto 45 00
1 old Bay horse 10 00
1 Coult [sic, colt] 20 00
1 waggon [sic] & streakers [?] 65 00
1 p[air] oxen & youke [sic, yoke] 50 00
1 Brindel [sic] cow 10 00
1 white D’o 10 00
1 white faced steer 5 00
1 D’o calf 3 00
2 large pots with boles [sic, bowls] 4 00
1 slead [sic] 0 50
4 shovel ploughs 5 00
1 barr shears D’o with two clevins [sic] 3 50
1 coulter 0 80
8 Harrow pins 1 00
1 Log Chain 1 67
3 old axes 1 50
2 mattocks 1 25
3 corn hoes 1 00
1 p. doubeltrees [sic] 1 00
1 skillet 0 12
2 old dutch ovens 0 75
3 Barrels 1 00
3 10 Gallon Kegs 1 50
3 augurs 1 00
1 old wheel reel & big wheel 0 75
1 lot broke [sic] flax 2 50
17 Bushels of Rye 11 33
17 D’o oats 5 67
7 bags 3 00
Horse Geers [sic] 7 50
1 shot gun 3 00
1 Lot old iron 1 00
1 Barrel flaxseed 1 25
5 flour Bll’s [sic] 0 50
1 half Bushel 0 33
1 churn and Bread baskets 0 25
2 S__kets 0 33
2 pair wool cards & cotton 0 50
330 50
To Amount brought forw’d …………….. $
30 Bushels of corn …….. 60 18 00
1 Grind stone 1 00
1 Syth & sneed [sic] 1 25
1 Sow and 12 pigs 8 00
13 sheep 26 00
1 old watch 6 00
1 Dresser & sundry earthen & Queensware 2 50
Knives & forks 1 00
1 Lot of Pewter 2 50
Tine [sic, tin] ware 2 50
1 Bucket coffee mill &c 1 00
1 Sett Ladels 1 25
1 p. feat [sic] irons 1 00
1 copper tea Kettle 1 50
1 small pot & bole [sic, bowl] 0 50
1 Skillet 0 33
1 Pott & bole 1 00
Shovel chain & Dogirons 1 00
1 Dutch oven 1 00
1 Table 1 50
1 Chest 2 50
2 dutch [sic: Deutch or German] books 0 75
1 Bible 0 50
1 p. Spectacl [sic] case & padlock 0 75 c
2 files and steel 37 c
1 Cro__t tub 33
122 __ pickeld pork ___ dryed beef ___ 10 98
3_ __ Hackeled flax 70
2 feather covers, – 2 sheets 1 Ch_f bag 2 bolsters bedstad [sic] and Bed 8 00
1 Large pot 1 75
Wool shears & slate [?] 0 60
Old handsaw 0 12 c
1 cutlery box & knife 2 00
1 wine mill 3 00
Pitch forks 0 37 c
1 canoe 3 00
_ sive [sic] 33
20 acres of wheat in the ground @ $4 p. acres 80 00
7 acres of ry [sic] in the ground @ $3 21 00
2/3 of 3 acres of wheat in the ground 2.50 7 50
2/3 of 5 D’o Ry [sic] …………………….. D’o the landlords 1/3 to be shocked [sic] $1.75 9 52
1 Hoop Kn_et 1 50
224 41
To Amount brought forw’d …….. $
1 Curry Comb 20
31 Bushels of wheat @ 80cts 24 80
Cash on hand 18 50
1 Leather Pocket book 0 25
1 Sett mall rings & wedge 0 90
1 small box 0 12 c
1 collar 1 00
1 p. silver shoe Buckets 1 00
1 silver stock bucket 0 75
1 pr. of stityards 1 50
1 fife 0 50
1 close [sic, clothes] brush 0 25
1 Basket 0 12
49 89
224 41
330 50
604 80

Huntingdon County, ss

Before me the subscriber one of the Justices of the Peace in and for said County aforesaid personally came John King and George Buchanan Esqr’s, appraises [word cut off in copying] and deposeth and Sayeth that the within and foregoing is a faithfull [sic] and Imparshal [sic] appraisement of the personal estate of John Ryland late of Hopewell Township, Deceased, in so far as it has come to their knowledge to the best of their skill and ability. Sworento [sic] and Subscribed this 7th day of March 1814.

James Cummins (?)

Geo Buchanan

Jn’o King

Transcription ends.

In Search of John’s Family Bible

John owned a Bible, and no doubt it has family data in it. It’s probably in someone’s attic or Special Collections in a library in Ohio or Illinois. If anyone knows about it, please email me at the bottom of this post (remove the needless symbols and just use my name).

April Term 1814

John appears in the court records, in April 1814, Huntingdon County, Pennsylvania, shortly after his father died. He is a minor and needs a guardian.

John's Probate 2

Transcription Begins:

April Term 1814  . . . .

On motion of Wm [Mr?] Allen, John Ryland appearing in court making choice of Henry Shoup for his Guardian.

Whereupon it is considered by the Court and ordered that the [said] Henry Shoup be and he is hereby appointed Guardian of the said minor — fees paid by the minor

Transcription Ends.

Source: Huntingdon County Orphans Court Docket, Book B, p. 303

Administration Account

April 1, 1815

This document says that William Ryland presents to the Court for confirmation his accounting of John Ryland’s estate, deceased. As usual, professional accountants handled things and distributed moneys. The last line says that the Court confirmed the accounting.

April Term 1815

File H-No90

The Administration account of William Ryland admr of the Estate of John Ryland deceased was presented to the court for Confirmation, by which it appears that the accountant had received on account of the said Estat [sic] the sum of eight hundred and twenty seven dollars and eight & an haf [sic] cents exclusive of eighty dollars due to the said Estate the first day of April 1815 by James Entricken for land.  And that he has made disbursements including the allowance made by the Register for his time and expenses in his doministration [sic] and the Registers & Clerk of the orphans Court fees to amout [sic] of one hundred and fifty one dollars and one cent & half cent which will leave a balance in the hand of the accountant of six hundred and seventy six dollars and seventy nine cents (exclusive of the said eighty dollars due by James Entriken aforesaid), subject to distribusion [sic] according to law,

Whereupon the court order the said account to be confirmed.

Transcription ends.

What the Tax Lists and Probate Tell Us

John Ryland died intestate, but what does survive of his sparse probate papers, plus his tax records in Hopewell Township, Huntingdon County, reveal these facts:

  1. John, “widow,” and William share the same surname: Ryland.
  2. William was at least 21 years old in 1811, appearing in the single freemen’s list in that year for the first time.
  3. John dies before February 9, 1814, the date his probate is initiated.
  4. Widow first appears in 1814 tax list, which is recorded after February 9, 1814.
  5. William first appears in the married freemen’s tax list in 1815.
  6. The principals are of two generations: John and widow in the older generation; William in the younger.
  7. Early in 1814, William is appointed administrator of John’s estate.
  8. In 1815 widow Ryland’s property decreases in value, while William’s increases.
  9. John, widow, and William appear in one township and one county, in the same timeframe (1808-1816).
  10. There are no other Rylands living in that one location. Only John, widow, and William Ryland reside and are taxed in that specific township.
  11. William and widow “remove” or leave Hopewell Township, by 1816. Iin the major section on William, next, the History of Ashland County, OH, says William arrived there in fall 1815, and the Ashland Co. OH 1820 census reveals a white female over 45, most likely the widow Ryland.

SUMMARY OF JOHN’S LIFE

This post has divided, only for convenience’s sake, John’s life into four stages.

The bulk of this summary is taken from the records, all of which have been sworn to in a court of law or before its representatives. However, we need to take educated guesses for some questions. His youth is a guess. Even John’s possible second marriage to Kate is based so far on family tradition, no legal document. Sometimes his movements are hard to pin down with precision. But all of this is true for early Americans, from our point of view today. Other than those issues, there is no guesswork here, for there is an abundance of legal records.

In Search of His Family Bible

Once again let’s place a call for John Ryland’s Bible. It’s probably in someone’s attic or in the Special Collections at a library, in Ohio or Illinois (or elsewhere). Please contact me at my email address at the end of this long post (remove the needless symbols and just use my name).

Berks County

We don’t know much about his early life, except he followed in his father’s footsteps. Father Paul operated a mill and farmed, and so did John. John appears in the 1780 tax roll as a single freeman. He was taxed 11 pounds and 5 shillings, which seems very high. He also appears in the 1781 Return and Assessment as a single freeman. This tax was collected in the late winter and spring, and he married Susannah on September 1 of that year, so the facts or sequence fit together.

Coherence of the facts is a good indication that we’re interpreting things correctly.

He grew up hearing German from his father Paul. John no doubt was bilingual, but English took over. Maybe by the end of his life his knowledge of German was conversational and domestic, about farming, not complicated philosophy or politics.

Military Service

John served under different commanders, in different companies and regiments, during the Revolutionary War or War of Independence.

This link shows how rapidly a private could be moved around.

http://www.footnote.com/image/3184191/Rilands/

My impression of the Revolutionary War is that things indeed fluctuated rapidly.

Some of the different commands that Pvt. and wagon master John Ryland served under:

  • 1st Regiment
  • 4th Regiment
  • 7th Pennsylvania Regiment, under Major Parr’s company and under Capt. William Lusk, who commanded the light infantry.
  • 4th Battalion, 8th Company, under Capt. Philip Krick (Creek); Krick also commanded the 6th Company and the men from Cumru Township.
  • 6th Battalion, 8th Company, under Capt. John Spohn; Spohn commanded the men from Cumru Township.
  • John was also taken as a British prisoner of war, for an unspecified duration.
  • He also served in the frontiers for an unspecified duration.

Finally, he married Susanna Kissinger during the war, on September 1, 1781. No doubt he did this during a leave of absence, perhaps when there was a lull in the fighting. He was, after all, fighting on his home turf. He didn’t have to cross the Atlantic by a ship with sails.

Bedford County

It’s not clear which year John made it to this county. He was required by law to enroll in the militia, even though the war was over, and this enrollment took place in January 26, 1789, in Hopewell Township.

At the end of that year in December he receives a warrant for 5 acres and eighty-three perches, on the southeast side of the Raystown Branch of the Juniata River, Hopewell Township. But since he resided in that township to be enrolled in the militia, perhaps he owned property before then. In April 1793 he buys 75 acres, again on the southeast side of the Raystown Branch of the Juniata River. In May of that same year he acquires 109 acres and 147 perches, once more on the southeast side of the Raystown Branch of the Juniata River. Still more land in Hopewell Township: In 1799, he buys 80 acres for 130 pounds, along the Raystown Branch of the Juniata River, from Joseph Shoup. Mr. Shoup here is the one who enrolled the men of Hopewell into the militia in 1789. In 1799, he appears in the Return and Assessment tax list. He owned 160 acres, 1 house, 1 barn, 20 acres of clear land, 2 horses, 4 cattle, all of which is valued at $466.00. He was taxed at $1.17. He owned more than this acreage, as the deeds show, but perhaps the tax man counted only one estate, the one John lived on primarily.

These land purchases and his residence in Hopewell Township set him up for a continual relationship with his brother James and one other key person. They appear in the 1800 census. So it seems they were not only brothers, but good friends as well. John Ewing also owns land on the Raystown Branch. He will turn out to be William Ryland’s father-in-law, for one of Ewing’s daughters is Catherine. She and William marry in spring 1814, after his father John Ryland died by February 9, 1814. Before that sad event, however, this geographical closeness gives William and Catherine the chance to socialize, no doubt at dances that the early Americans were crazy about, under the watchful eye of matrons. The youngsters couldn’t work on the farm all the time.

John’s house at this time was upscale. It was valued at $200.00, when the average home was $25.00. John operates a mill in Huntingdon County, in the next phase in his life, so he knew how to cut timber for his house now in this county or grind grain. Recall that his father Paul knew how to operate a mill, since in one deed he was called a miller. John learned this trade from dear old dad. But the early Americans were community dependent. They were not rugged individualists who did not need their neighbors. They came around to help raise barns, storage facilities, mills, and houses. So we should imagine John got help from his brother James and neighbor John Ewing and others in the community. We should also imagine John helping them out.

Speaking of working together, John, his brother James, and neighbor John Ewing had a case heard before the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania, from 1805-1808, Lessee of Charles Coxe et al. v. John Ewing, James Ryland, and John Ryland. The case involved ownership of land. The defendants won.

More important than material possession are relationships. John’s firstborn son William’s gravestone indicates he was born in 1788. If that year is accurate, he was most likely born in Berks County. Perhaps shortly after that, the young parents John and Susannah moved to Bedford County. However, the Huntingdon County Return and Assessment shows William made it onto the single men’s roll in 1812, which means he turned 21 at that time. If that’s the fullest record, then William’s birth year is 1791 and he was born in Bedford County. But age of majority was fluid back then.

However, William could have remained in Bedford County, working with John Ewing, for John owned land that crossed over into Huntingdon County. And William appears on the 1811 single men’s roll merely because that year is the first time he moved to Huntingdon County. And that would reconcile the two birth years. If not, we have either a clerical error in Huntingdon County, Pennsylvania, or an inaccurate memory of his age at the time of his death in 1867 in Ashland County, Ohio, though it seems hard to believe his wife would not know her husband’s age when he died. But how to reconcile the gravestone with the tax record is anyone’s guess.

But let’s not figure out that puzzle here. In either of those years, John rejoiced to see his first son. He and Susannah chose one of the most common – if not the most common – name at that time. Susannah did not have a brother of that name, but John did, so maybe they named their son after him. Or perhaps they chose the name simply because it was popular.

John and Susannah were married on September 1, 1781. John’s military service slowed things down, but he got out by 1783.

Now we reach a greater puzzle. A family reunion was held in Illinois, in 1900. Those who attended were the descendants of John’s kids Paul and Rachel; some were John’s elderly grandkids. The reunion remembers that John married a woman named Kate. Recall that Susannah’s middle name was not Catherine, but Margret. (Kate is often a nickname of Catherine.) Year 1900 is not all that far removed from John’s passing in 1814. Also, Rachel married James McFall, and he appears in the Ashland County censuses and in George W. Hill’s History of Ashland County. Paul took the last name Riley, for reasons unknown to us so far, and he appears in Mineral County, Illinois, censuses and dies in 1871. So is their descendants’ memory accurate? Wouldn’t you remember your grandparents’ names? But it would be nice to have legal proof, not just family tradition or circumstantial evidence.

Susannah appears in a deed on March 21, 1791, in which John sells his father and mother’s farm, a full year earlier on March 27, 1790. Susannah swears she was under no compulsion to agree to the sale (standard procedure for the wife). If their first son (our) William was born in 1791, then she died shortly after that (during childbirth?) Then John waited one or two years to marry Kate and have their child, Rachel, possibly in 1793.

If anyone out there can find the record of John’s marriage to Kate in Bedford County, please email us.

John suffered some grief between February 1789 and June 1791. John’s father Paul died before March 2, 1789. In many cases, it did not take all that long for probate to be initiated, so we should assume he died between February 2 and that day in March. A perfect example of the short time for probate to be started is his mother’s death. She signed her will on May 10, 1790, and her probate got underway on June 7. That’s a little under a month. More important than these calculations is the sadness at losing a loved one. John was her firstborn. Finally, if Susannah died about 1791, then John suffered from that too. Three deaths in two years must have been difficult for him – or if Susannah did not die in that year, two deaths in as many years can be hard on the soul.

On February 21, 1807, John Ryland is crossed off the tax list, in Hopewell Township, Bedford County, indicating that he and his young family have moved.

Huntingdon County

John appears in the tax record in Hopewell Township, Huntingdon County, in 1808. (Yes, there are two Hopewell Townships near each other in the two counties.) Why did John move? I can understand why a family moves across the county or to Ohio from neighboring Pennsylvania. But why move to another farm close by to your earlier home in an adjoining county to the north? I can’t answer that question, for lack of information.

But move he did.

His farm declined in value in his new county. Back in Bedford County, his Assessment and Return valued his property and items at $406.00 in 1799. Yet in the same kind of tax, the same things were valued at 250.00 for 1808 to 1810, in Huntingdon County. Then in 1811 it was valued at $100.00 and $106.00 in the next two years. When widow Ryland’s estate was assessed, it was about the same, $110.00 in 1814 and $95.00 in 1815. Why the decline? John was getting older, so maybe he could not take care of things as well as he used to do. His last three kids were young, so they could not help as much as his firstborn William, and even he was still green, at 21 in 1812.

John died before February 9, 1814. Taking his mother’s passing and probate as a model, we should assume he died between January 9, and that day in February – or before February 2. Since John was born in 1755, he was 59 years old when he met his Maker. This is relatively young, even for back then. Life expectancy was lower back in those days only because infant mortality is factored into the calculations. If a child could grow into adulthood, he could live way past 60. Some pioneers in the Ryland line lived into their 80s and 90s. Many lived into their 70s.

I imagine how hard the death of a parent hits little kids. If Rachel was born in 1793, then she was 11 years old. Paul was born in 1794, so he was 10 years, and John Jr. was born possibly in 1795, so he was 9. It must have hit William hard too, since he was 26. But he showed maturity, as the oldest male child often does. He took care of his father’s probate, the court appointing him on February 9. Unfortunately, John died intestate, so many puzzles have to go unanswered about family relationship and identities, without a will.

John left behind this valuable livestock: 1 gray mare, 1 sorrel mare, 1 old bay horse, 1 colt, 1 pair oxen and yoke, 1 brindle cow, 1 white cow, 1 white-faced steer, and 1 white-faced calf.

Clearly, William kept at least some of the horses and the pair of oxen and their yoke. John also left them a wagon. William needed it to load up and the oxen to pull it on their journey westward, to homestead the land Catherine’s father John Ewing sold them in June 1814. (Catherine is our new William’s wife.) They loaded the wagon with some tools and household utensils they would need along the way to build their new house in Ohio.

Most significantly, John left a Bible. I have no doubt the family took it with them. It may be in German or English (probably English). Would any Ryland or Riley descendant care to look in their attic, in Ohio or Illinois? It may have a family history in it.

So off they go in late summer or early fall, to Ohio. William and Catherine gave John a grandchild, so to speak, posthumously, in March 1815: Mary Ann. The young travelers may have stopped in neighboring Bedford County towards the south to rendezvous with William’s brother-in-law George Ewing. H. S. Knapp records in his History of Ashland County the family tradition that they came from Bedford (not Huntingdon) County. A little more research on George Ewing in Pennsylvania would clarify this. Or maybe Kate had family there, if she really is John’s second wife. After all, they lived there, after they married. He probably met her there and her family. In any case, they all traveled together and homesteaded as neighbors.

In the 1820 Richland County, Ohio, Census, William Ryland (Riland) appears next door to his brother-in-law George Ewing’s. A woman over 45 also is noted in the census, in the family. I have no doubt that “widow Ryland” (whether Susannah or Kate) is that woman.

Let’s close this post with John himself.

To me, he was an ordinary-extraordinary American pioneer who grew up in the colonial times, when western Pennsylvania was considered the frontier. He was extraordinary because he fought in the Revolutionary War. He was a private and a wagon master. He was not a high-ranking officer. He was extraordinary, however, because he was a farmer and not a famous politician or an American philosopher like Benjamin Franklin. Nor did he descend from a royal line. Rather, many times he stood behind a plow pulled by oxen, digging up the dirt to plant the new crop. Many hours he spent in the mill, cutting lumber or grinding grain. It takes a real man to settle in the frontiers, where trouble with the natives could erupt at any time, where land needed to be homesteaded from scratch. That takes an extraordinary man, particularly when young kids are involved. John barely saw his oldest, Magdalena, go past 31 years old and William past 26. His other kids were not yet in their teens, when he died.

He was an ordinary man who had some religion in him. It takes an ordinary man to read the Bible. But it takes extraordinary faith to strike out and live near his brothers and then settle raw and rough territory.

Please read about his oldest son, William Ryland.

SOURCES

  • Huntingdon County Historical Society
  • Land Warranties Bedford Co 1771-1893 John Riland 5 acres, 1789
  • Land Warranties, Bedford Co., 75 acres April 11, 1793
  • Land Warranties, XVIII 479
  • 1800 PA Census John Reyland Bedford Co. 65:02 Hopewell and Woodberry Township
  • John Ryland Dec’d, minor – guardian appointed for File of Paper H-11 p. 303 Orphan’s Court Docket B 1804-1816 Huntingdon Co. PA LDS microfilm 900,587
  • John Ryland, dec’d, Orphan’s Court Docket B 1804-1816 Adm Account confirmed H-90 p. 334, Huntingdon Co, PA LDS microfilm 900,587
  • John Ryland Letters of Adm granted Probate records, Index to Wills and Letters of Adm., 1787-1918; LDS microfilm 854,230
  • Frederic Paul and Jeffrey Howell, Berks County Pennsylvania Marriages 1730-1800, Reading: H. P. Publishing, 1986; see Johannes (John) Reiland and Susanna Kiesinger.
  • Donna R. Irish, Pennsylvania German Marriages, Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 1982.
  • Berks Co. Land Records, vol. 15, p. 8 LDS film 020,769
  • Sam W. Aylesworth
  • John F. Ryland
  • Phyllis J. Hughes
  • Quinton and Fran Barker
  • F. Edward Wright, Berks County, Pennsylvania, Church Records of the Eighteenth Century, vol. 5, Lewes, DE: Colonial Roots, 2011.

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