“Home of The Soul.”

Through his last sickness of dysentery he was calm, peaceful and happy, talking much of the love of Jesus, and the power of his grace, and especially of what he had done for him. He delighted much in the Word of God, many passages of which he had treasured up in his memory, and now, in his sickness proved as fountains of water gushing forth to refresh his fainting sole.

AITKEN WILLIAM

William M. Aitken was born in Washington County, Pa., October 3, 1807, of pious parents, and was by them trained up according to the usages of the Presbyterian Church. He was educated at Jefferson College, Canonsburgh, Pa., having study medicine at Nobelstown, Pa., also attended lectures at Jefferson Medical College, Philadelphia he commenced practice in Rural Valley, Armstrong County, Pa. in 1839, where, having acquired a large patronage, he remained for twenty-seven years.

William first love was a young woman 20 years his junior by the name of Lydia Jane  Totten.  Lydia Jane’s health was delicate but Doctor William Aitken’s fell in love with her and wanted to marry her anyway.

They were married 1948 in Rural Valley, Kittanning County Pennsylvania. William built Lydia a house  in Rural Valley for her that was entirely ground level so she would not have to climb many stairs. Now keep in mind back then they would build their homes with the living quarters on the first floor and the sleeping quarters on the second. But there is an exception to every rule so William chose to break that rule for the woman he loved so compassionately.

Dr. William Aitken Home in Rural Valley, PA[1]

Now this home is located at 817 Main Street in Rural Valley Street which has been the residence of several generations of Totten’s and Stewarts. The room which is now used as a living room has a separate entrance, and it served as Dr. Aitkens’ medical office.

Dr. Aitken and Lydia ere blessed with two sons John Lysander Aitken, born about 1848, and William Totten Meigs Aitken, born about 1851. Sadly Lydia passed away March 8, 1851 and is buried in the rural Valley Cemetery located in Rural Valley, Armstrong County , Pennsylvania along side her parents.

Lydia Jane Totten Aitkins

As time passed William overcame the death of his beloved wife Lydia. Then one Sunday while attending church a beautiful young woman caught his eye. He would soon learn she was the daughter of the church elder Richard Ewing Caruthers by the name of Rebecca born April 10, 1827 in Cowanshannock, Armstrong, Pennsylvania. William and Rebecca married in Rural Valley, Armstrong County, Pennsylvania on the 17 of October 1853.

AITKEN WILLIAM AND REBECCA C CARUTHERS3

William M. and Rebecca Caruthers Aitkien

In 1852 a daughter was born Jennie but died shortly after birth. Two years later another daughter born and died the same day her names was Lydia Isabella. Then in 1856 Hannah Ella Wood was born and lived to be 78 yrs old.  Homer was born in 1860 but tragedy would strike again when Emma Vashita was born in 1861  only living a year. Virginia Vashita was born in 1861 living until 1940. The last child Martha Elizabeth was born in 1864 living until 1941.

The three babies are buried in the Rural Valley Cemetery alongside Williams first wife Lydia.

Jennie Isabella Aitken

William then moved his family to Mt. Union, Ohio in 1866 selling the house he built for Lydia to his former father in law, Hamlet Totten Esq. Then in 1870 William and Rebecca moved their family to Williamsburg, Kansas.

Williamsburg Kansas

Williamsburg 1868

The next two photo’s  taken about 4 years ago.

old stone church in Williamsburg  KS

Old stone church

william and Rebecca's store.

The local historian informed our cousin that this is the store that William and Rebecca owned in Williamsburg Ks back in the 1870

 

The old stone church is one that William and Rebecca attended.

William passed away September 16, 1974 at the age of 66.

His obituary was written by his much loved brother in law the Rev. Richard Alexander Caruthers and is as follows….

(Obituary of William Aiken found in the bible of Mary Craig Totten in the home of Maxine E. Stewart, Rural Valley, Pa.)

William M. Aitken was born in Washington County, Pa., October 3, 1807, of pious parents, and was by them trained up according to the usages of the Presbyterian Church. He was educated at Jefferson College, Canonsburgh, Pa., having study medicine at Nobelstown, Pa., also attended lectures at Jefferson Medical College, Philadelphia he commenced practice in Rural Valley, Armstrong County, Pa. in 1839, where, having acquired a large patronage, he remained for twenty-seven years.
In 1866 he removed with his family to Mt. Union, Ohio and in 1870 to Williamsburg, Kansas. He was first married in 1846, to Lydia J., daughter of Hamlet Trotten Esq. of Rural Valley. She died in 1852, leaving two little boys. In 1853 he married Rebecca, daughter of Richard Caruthers, by whom he had six children, two of whom died in infancy. From early life he was taught to love the house of God, and the Sabbath School, both of which he cherished through life; but not until abought fifteen years ago did he make a profession of a saving knowledge of Christ, when he united with the M.E. Church at Rural Village, then under the pastoral care of Rev. I. M. Pierce. From that time until the close of his life he continued to be a consistent member of the Church, and then wherever his lot was cast, made it a point to attend upon all the means of grace. Through his last sickness (dysentery,) he was calm, peaceful and happy, talking much of the love of Jesus, and the power of his grace, and especially of what he had done for him. He delighted much in the Word of God, many passages of which he had treasured up in his memory, and now, in his sickness proved as fountains of water gushing forth to refresh his fainting sole. He often spoke of his home in heaven and frequently had his friends sing “Home of The Soul.” He said, “Tell my friends to meet me in heaven.” a few hours before he died, waking from sleep, he said, “the end drawing nigh; all is well.” To his friends and family said: “Watch! Watch! Watch!” Finally, after being fixed in bed, he said “All is bright ahead; let me rest now,” and immediately passed away.

By Rev. Richard Alexander Caruthers.

 

To be continued……

 

 

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About Caruthers Family History

We are all passionate about where we came from and where we're going. We set this website/blog up so we can all share our family stories along with the history for future generations.
This entry was posted in Caruthers Family, Education, Ewing, Kill Creek Osborne County Kansas, Methodist Church, Osborne County Genealogical & Historical Society, Osborne County Kansas, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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