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RUTHERFORD, W. F., was born in Swatara township, Dauphin county, Pa., December 7, 1839. He is a son of Abner and Ann (Espy) Rutherford. Thomas Rutherford, the ancestor of the Rutherford family in America, was born in Cookton, county Tyrone, Ireland, January 24, 1707. He was a farmer and came to the United States in 1728, landing at Philadelphia. He was married, September 7, 1730, to Miss Jane, daughter of John and Agnes Murdoch. They had twelve children: Agnes, died in 1735, aged four years; Eleanor, died aged sixty-four, was first the wife of William Wilson, who died; her second husband was John Davidson; Jane, who was the wife of Thomas Mays, and went to North Carolina, where both died; .John; Thomas, died in infancy, in 1739; Agnes, died in 1813, aged seventy-three, was the wife of a Mr. Dunlap, who died, and she was again married, to William Gray; a second Thomas, was killed by the falling of a tree, January 8, 1760, when he was -as sixteen years old; Mary, went to North Carolina, where she died; Elizabeth, died October, 1745, in her infancy; James, died March 6, 1809, aged sixty-one; Samuel, died May 2, 1785, aged thirty-five, was a soldier in the Revolution; Elizabeth was married three times, first to Patrick Galloway, secondly, to Patrick Harbison, and thirdly, to Thomas Archibald, with whom she went South, where both died.

John Rutherford, son of Thomas, and great-grandfather of W. V. Rutherford, was born in Donegal township, Lancaster county, Pa., February 16, 1737; son of Thomas and Jane (Murdoch) Rutherford, both natives of Ireland. He was educated in the schools of his native township, and was a farmer. He was married, February 4, 1762, to Miss Margaret Park, by whom he had seven children: Jane (died February 28, 1807, aged forty-three years, wife of Samuel Hutchinson; Martha, died August 27, 1849, aged eighty-four, was the wife of Capt. James Collier, a soldier of the Revolution; Thomas, died October 15, 1793, aged twenty-five; Samuel, died November 26, 1833, aged sixty-four; Mary, died August 17, 1863, aged ninety-one, was the wife of Robert Gray, a soldier of the Revolution; John, died May 1, 1832, aged fifty-eight; and William. Mr. Rutherford besides being a farmer was also in public life, having held office in 1776-77. In later years he fought against the Indians. He died October 1, 1804, aged sixty-seven. Margaret., his wife, died January 18, 1810, aged seventy-three years. Both were members of the Paxtang Presbyterian church, and both are buried there.

William Rutherford, son of John and grandfather of W. F. Rutherford, was born in Swatara township, Dauphin county, August 4, 1776, and was educated in the old Paxtang school house, under the instruction of Master Allen. He was a farmer. He was in the militia, and filled all offices from lieutenant to that of colonel. In 1816 he was chosen one of the directors of the poor of Dauphin county. He was also a member of the Legislature from 1819 to 1821, and again from 1829 to 1831. Mr. William Rutherford was married, March 17, 1801, to Miss Sarah, daughter of William and Martha (Renick) Swan. They had ten children, of whom the only one now living is Dr. Hiram Rutherford, of Oakland, Ill. Their deceased children are: John P., died May 12, 1871, aged sixty-nine years; Martha, October 20, 1851, aged forty-seven; William W., March 13, 1873, aged sixty-seven; Margaret, June 7, 1889, aged eighty; Samuel, March 26, 1872, aged sixty-one; Sarah, March 28, 1873, aged sixty, was the wife of Daniel Kendig; Abner; Mary, died April 14, 1818, aged ten months; Cyrus, killed by the limb of a tree falling on his head, March 30, 1850, aged thirty years. Mr. William Rutherford died January 17, 1850, aged seventy-three.

His son, Abner Rutherford, father of W. F. Rutherford, was born in Dauphin county, March 31, 1814. He was educated in Swatara township, and principally at the old school house at the Paxtang church. He was a farmer. He was married, February 28,1839, to Miss Ann Espy, born in Dauphin county, August 13, 1812; daughter of William and Susan (Gray) Espy. They were married by the Rev. James Sharon, who also baptized them in their infancy. They had nine children, three of whom are living: William F., Susan E., and Ada Byron, wife of Spencer F. Barber. Their deceased children are: John M., died May 24, 1869, aged twenty-eight; Susan E., May 5, 1846, aged two years and seven months; Sarah A., December 21, 1883, aged thirty-eight, was the wife of Dr. A. C. Renninger, also deceased; Abner, January 10, 1855, aged seven years; Alice A., August 26, 1850, aged one year. Abner Rutherford was engaged in farming at Rutherford station, near Harrisburg, until 1868, when he retired. In 1835 Mr. Rutherford was elected captain of the Tenth company, Ninety-eighth regiment, Pennsylvania militia. He was one of the founders of the State Agricultural Society. He filled various offices in the township. Mr. Rutherford was formerly a Whig, but became a Republican when that party was organized. He was for many years president of the Hummelstown Bank, and held that position at the time of his death. He was all his life a member of the Paxtang Presbyterian church. His death occurred September 2, 1890, at the age of seventy-six. His wife is still living and is in good health at the advanced age of eighty-four. She is a consistent member of the Paxtang Presbyterian church. The mother of William F. Rutherford was descended from the Espy family. Its first American ancestor, George Espy, was born in Ireland and died in 1761. He came to America in 1729, and settled in Derry township, Lancaster, now Dauphin county. He was married in Ireland to Miss Jane Taylor. They had these children: John, born in 1716; Josiah, born 1718; William, died in August, 1761, aged forty-one years; Mary, born in the north of Ireland in 1722, wife of John Woods; Jane and Elizabeth, twins, born in 1725; Elizabeth was the wife of James Forster; James, born in 1727, died in 1787; David, died in June, 1795, in Bedford, Pa., was a prominent lawyer; George, born in 1732, and Anne, born in 1736, wife of William Crane.

Josiah Espy, son of George, and maternal great-great-grandfather of W. F. Rutherford, was born in the north of Ireland in 1718, and came with his parents from Ireland in 1729. They located in Hanover, Lancaster county, now Lebanon county, where Josiah died in 1762, aged forty-four years. He was twice married, first to Miss Buell and afterwards to Miss Elizabeth Crane. There is no account of the separate issue of these marriages, but by both there were these children: Josiah; Susan, wife of John Patton; Mary, died in 1818, aged seventy-three, was the wife of James McClure; Martha, born in 1747, wife of Capt. Lazarus Stewart; George, died in April, 1814, in Luzerne county; Priscilla, born in 1753; Robert, in 1755, and Samuel, in 1757.

Josiah Espy (2), maternal great-grandfather of W. F. Rutherford, was born March 10, 1742, in Hanover, then Lancaster, now Lebanon county, Pa., where he was reared and educated. His chief occupation was farming, at which he spent most of his life in Dauphin county. Mr. Espy was married, July 8, 1769, to Miss Ann, daughter of William and Margaret Kirkpatrick. They had these children: Margaret, died September 4, 1851, was the wife of Samuel Elder; Priscilla, died September 29, 1845, wife of Robert McClure; Josiah, died April 13,1811; William; James Snodgrass, died September 21, 1872, in Harrisburg, where he was one of the leading merchants; Dr. John E., died April 26, 1831, at Harrisburg, where he was it prominent physician.

William Espy, maternal grandfather of W. F. Rutherford, was born June 2, 1776, was educated in the schools of Paxtang and was a farmer. He was married, June 2, 1807, to Miss Susanna, daughter of Joseph and Elizabeth (Forster) Gray, Rev. James R. Sharon officiating. They had three children, of whom two are living: Elizabeth G., wife of Samuel Sharp, deceased, and Ann Josiah, born December 22,1809, died August 12, 1891, aged eighty-two years. Mr. Espy retired in 1843 and removed to Harrisburg, where he died July 28, 1850, aged seventy-four. His wife died July 10, 1854, aged seventy-two years. Both were members of the Presbyterian church.

W. F. Rutherford received his primary education in the schools of Swatara township, and afterwards attended the Mt. Joy Academy, Lancaster county, for five years. He subsequently engaged in farming, on the place on which he now lives. In 1860 he taught school for one year. Mr. Rutherford was married, in Swatara township, December 30, 1862, to Miss Adeline K, daughter of John B. and Keziah (Park) Rutherford, Rev. A. D. Mitchell performing the ceremony. Of their nine children seven are living: Annie E., Richard, Jane D., Adeline M., Marshall, Keziah P., and Donald. Their deceased children are: Florence, died in 1864, an infant, and Helen P., died August 29, 1889, aged twenty-three years. Mr. Rutherford is a Republican and in 1864 was elected school director, and served three years. He has also served as assessor. He has been connected with the Pennsylvania State Agricultural Society for about thirty rears and has been its treasurer for the past three years. He is a member of the Paxtang Presbyterian church and is secretary of the board of trustees of that church. Mrs. William F. Rutherford was born March 22, 1839. Her father, John B. Rutherford, was born in Dauphin county and was a farmer by occupation. He was married, March 19, 1833, by Rev. James Latta, to Miss Keziah Park, daughter of Col. James and Mary Park, and celebrated their golden wedding March 19, 1883. Their family of eight children are all living, and are as follows: Mary L., wife of .James McClure; Eliza Jane, wife of Rev. Samuel Dickey; Adeline, Mrs. Rutherford; Samuel P., married to Eliza R. Bunn; John Q. A., married to Margaret B. Elder; Francis W., married to Eleanor Elder; Keziah V., and Marion Gertrude, wife of S. Ralston Dickey. Mr. Rutherford spent his active life in farming, from which he retired at few years before his death. The Whig party elected him to the Pennsylvania House of Representatives, in which he served from 1845 to 1849. By the Republican party he was elected in later time to the State Senate, and served three years with distinguished ability. He was treasurer of the Pennsylvania State Agricultural Society for twenty-five years. He also held various township offices. Mr. Rutherford was a ruling elder in Paxtang church for about fifty years. He died October 10, 1892, aged eighty--six years. His wife was born in Parksburg, Chester county, October 28, 1810, and died July 23, 1885, aged seventy-four years.

Historical Review of Dauphin County

Transcribed by Robert Demy for The Dauphin County, Pennsylvania Genealogy Transcription Project

Date of Transcription: 28 August 2001

Copyright (c) 2001 All Rights Reserved: Use, duplication or reproduction for profit or presentation by any person or organization is strictly prohibited.

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