I’m going to dedicate today’s memory to a new found cousin. She too comes down through our Caruthers line but is a generation ahead of me and that’s what makes thing work out with your family history. Each generation can tell each other about what happened in their generation and you can tell them what happened in yours. You share stories, you laugh, you cry and then the pictures exchanged between you are priceless. I love it when I am able to share a face for them to put to a name and vice versa. If we don’t do this and pass on the family history it will die. Whenever I read this story I always think of myself. You could say I am my grandfather’s granddaughter because you see even as a child if someone told me I couldn’t do something no matter what it was I always proved them wrong. Now I’m not going to name any names but she will know who she is. I hope you enjoy this.
TODAY’S MEMORY IS OF OUR GRANDFATHER…..
Richard Alexander Caruthers was born on March 21, 1819 in Rural Valley, Armstrong County Pennsylvania to Richard Ewing Caruthers and Eleanor Rebecca Findley Caruthers Now Richard Alexander was a millwright by trade but soon became involved in the Methodist Ministry.
It is said through family legend passed down through the generations that Richard Alexander Caruthers was raised a Presbyterian. Richard’s father being one of the founding fathers of the Rural Valley Presbyterian church.
Richard Ewing Caruthers was an elder of the Rural Valley Presbyterian Church which was organized August 1, 1835. A number of Christian people had been accustomed to meet in a house built for church and school purposes at a point eight miles east of Kittanning and two miles west of Rural Valley. The ground had been donated to the inhabitants by Hon. William Findley and here they had established a Sabbath School. They also met for divine worship and had joined the church of Kittanning in engaging Rev. Joseph Painter to preach.
Although when in his nineteenth year he attended a Methodist Church Camp meeting around 1838 and it was there he converted to Methodism. Richard Ewing Caruthers, despising the Methodist Church, was so angered at Richard Alexander for this that he drove him out of the house and refused to pay for any of Richard Alexander’s formal education.
Richard was determined to lead a spiritual life of his choice with or without his father. Richard being a young man with only about six month of education decided to go out and purchase some old text books. He would sit at night by the candlelight teaching himself to be a better educated man.
At the age of twenty two Richard Alexander meet a young German woman by the name of Nancy Cook. On the eleventh day of February 1840 they married. The only information the family knows about Nancy Cook is what was told to her daughter Nancy Emma Caruthers Dunham by her older brother Thomas George Caruthers.
The story goes as follows….
Nancy Cook’s parents were of the Reformed Lutheran Church. Nancy’s father died at a very young age and that Nancy herself was only about ten years old when her mother remarried a man said to be by the name of Dougherty. The only language Nancy Cook spoke was German but after her mother remarried Nancy was taught to speak English and eventually forgot how to speak German. Nancy never spoke of her parents. But this is a normal circumstance when you are disowned or excommunicated from the church back in those times. Most likely when Nancy married Richard Alexander Caruthers from the Methodist religion and she being from the Reformed Lutheran she was abolished from her church so did not speak of her family at all.
There was a house fire in Kill Creek, Osborne County, Kansas back in 1895 and all was lost. An article in the Osborne County Farmer tells how it all happened…
I hope you all enjoy my ramblings and come back and see me again real soon. Until then I bid you ADIEU’