Persons mentioned in
"History of Raccoon Church, Candor, Pa., 1778-1899"
by Margaret S. Sturgeon, published about 1899

Conrtibuted by Marsh Richins, Jan 2001

      The beginning of the Lord's work in this place is not positively known. The only complete record of them that now remains is the one that was kept in Heaven.

       That eternal register of all human action is not yet open for our inspection, and we are obliged, at present, to seek the desired information from less reliable sources. And we must be content with this imperfect knowledge until "the books are opened, and the dead are judged, out of those things which are written in the books according to their works."

       Then we will know it all. "For there is nothing hid that shall not be made manifest."

       Ours is one of the oldest churches in Western Pennsylvania. As proved from the following extract, culled by permission, from the private journal of Rev. Jno. McMillan, D. D., which reads as follows. 

 1778 -- 1st Sab. of Dec. preached at Raccoon from Rom. 8, 6. Rec'd. £7-10-6. 1779 -- Tuesday after (3rd Sab. of June) at Mr. Balie's place on Raccoon. Rec'd. £13-17-3.

1780 -- 3rd Sab. of June at Raccoon and rec'd. £46-11-6. 4th Sab. of July at Mr. McDonald’s place, on Robinson Run and rec'd. £22-12-6.

1782 -- Oct. 2nd Sab. at Raccoon.

1785 -- Nov. the 2nd Sab. at Potato Garden.


      The first settlers were almost exclusively of Scotch and Scotch-Irish descent, coming from Eastern Pennsylvania and New Jersey, who seem to have brought with them all the combativeness and tenacity for the pure Gospel of truth, and for the Presbyterian form of religion usually ascribed to their nationality.


      Among those earliest on the field were the Baileys, Dunbars, Dunlaps, Atens, Donaldsons, McDonalds, Pyles, Cardikes,  McCartys, McFarlands, Riddiles, Scotts and Crooks.


      The third and fourth generations of some of these families, still bearing the same name, are active and useful members among those who now "Hold the Fort."




      The location of this church in the then wilderness was, no doubt, determined by its proximity to Beilor's Fort, whose location has been pointed out by our forefathers as standing immediately southeast of the cemetery. The first person buried in this cemetery was Mrs. Martha Bigger, who died in a fort located on Miller's Run, where the family had fled for safety from the predatory excursions of the Indians. A stone tablet marks her grave bearing the date of May 20th, 1780.


      Shortly afterwards nearby were buried a Mr. McCandless and two Shearer brothers, who were scalped by the Indians while gathering in their harvest. The descendants of both the Bigger and Shearer families at the present time occupy the land conquered by their forefathers from the primeval forest.


                                 FIRST CHURCH.


      Six years before the constitution of the United States was adopted, "when Washington and that noble band of patriots who worked with him were laying the foundation for the temple of liberty," the fathers of this congregation were cutting, hauling, and building with their own hands, of unhewn logs, the first house of worship, which was completed in 1781.


      It seems to have been the custom of the early settlers of Western Pennsylvania to give names to their churches corresponding to that of the nearest stream, hence the name Raccoon. This name, no doubt, seems rude and uncouth to the esthetic ears of the present generation, but to those of our members whose families have been represented within these sacred walls for four and five generations, this name is linked with too many tender associations to be lightly thrown aside.


                               SECOND CHURCH. 


      In 1786 the first church could no longer accommodate the rapidly increasing congregation, whose limits were Clinton on the north, Hickory on the south, including Noblestown on the east and Burgettstown on the west.


      "The first church was taken down, and a commodious hewn log church was erected on the same spot. On each of the longer sides of this building there was a recess of considerable size, an architectural device to furnish a corner to support the end of the timbers, the size of the house requiring two lengths."


      "The pulpit was in one of these recesses, and the one on the opposite side was appropriated to the use of a few colored slaves then owned in the neighborhood." This house cost $400, a large amount for that day and no doubt represented much self-denial on the part of our forefathers. In all their straits, we have no account of letters being sent back to the home churches in the East praying for assistance, but with energy, zeal and self sacrifice they laid firm and deep the foundation stones, upon which each succeeding generation has built.


      In neither of these buildings was any provision made for heating purposes, although many of the members came from a distance of eight and ten miles, in the bitter cold, remaining for two long sermons, yet tradition hands down no complaints of hardships endured, or colds contracted thereby.


      After a time some of the more progressive members took it upon themselves to place a stove within those sacred walls, to the manifest displeasure of the more conservative members of the flock, who considered this a very unnecessary innovation. Unfortunately on the first day it was used, a woman in the audience fainted. No sooner was she carried out at one door, than willing hands as promptly carried the offensive stove out at another door, where it remained for a time in order to avoid the danger of division. Some of our forefathers seem to have had as many conscientious scruples about introducing heating apparatuses into the churches, as some of our sister churches seem to have in the introduction of an organ.


      After the lapse of twelve years, the ground upon which the church now stands was purchased. Among the church archives is found the following: Jan. 19th, 1793, John Clark and Jane, his wife, conveyed to William Rankin, Peter Kidd, William McCandlass, Matthew Bailey, John Dunlap and Alexander Wright, trustees of Raccoon Church, in consideration of nine pounds specie all that lot of ground whereon the congregation has erected their church, under the pastoral care of Rev. Joseph Patterson, containing seven acres, strict measurement.


      For forty-four years or until 1830 the congregation worshiped in this house. An aged member tells of a tent which stood just south of the cemetery, which she described as a platform elevated about three feet from the ground with two sides and one end closed, the roof sloping towards the closed end; the ministers occupying the platform, the audience seated on logs arranged in front of the platform. This tent was resorted to when the church could not accommodate the audience, or on communion occasions when services would often be held in both church and tent.


      The log church and tent served its day and generation, but the time had now come when they too must give way to the march of improvement.


                                 THIRD CHURCH.


      In 1830 a large, substantial brick church with a seating capacity for 600 was erected on the same ground upon which the log church stood. I have a vision today of this imposing structure with its five double outside doors. Its wide transverse aisle, the pulpit in the side, high up, reached by two flights of stairs of six steps each with its fan shaped windows in the rear, on each side of which, upon the white walls in bas relief were easter lilies, the roof sloping from all four sides to a point in the middle, with a modest belfry perched upon this apex, the bell rope dangling from it, to the center of the church, terminating in a loop within easy reach of the sexton's hand.


      For fifty-four years this church opened wide its five outside doors to welcome this large congregation. At the present time within its original borders flourish five Presbyterian churches. These scions, though strong and flourishing, have not materially injured the parent stock.


      This church in its day was no doubt considered a model of convenience and architectural beauty.


      The fathers who had planned it were fast passing away, and the congregation once more with one voice, like to that of Nehemiah of old said, “The God of heaven he will prosper us, therefore, we his servants will arise and again build."


                                FOURTH CHURCH.


      In the spring of 1872 the old church endeared to so many of our hearts by tender associations was taken down that the new edifice might stand upon the same sacred ground occupied by its three predecessors.


      These grand old oaks whose branches were once stirred by the resonant tones of McMillan, McCurdy, "the silver-toned Marquis” and the fervent prayers of our own loved Patterson, stretch their protecting boughs not less loving over our present sanctuary.


      This church like its predecessor was built of brick, 81 x 60 ft., two stories, with a seating capacity for 500 in the audience room, commodious Sunday-school room, seated with chairs, lecture room, women's room, etc. Total cost, $16,000.


      The church was dedicated free from debt on Thanksgiving day, 1873. The sermon was preached by Rev. S. J. Wilson, D.D., and a historical discourse was delivered by Rev. C. V. McKaig, D.D., in which he paid high tribute to the pioneer women of this church.


      In 1888 a manse was built at a cost of $2,500.00, and in 1895 the church was renovated, recarpeted, refrescoed at an expense of about $1,200.00.




      In giving the history of the early pastorates of Raccoon Church, unfortunately for the historian, the pastors left but scant records of their work behind them. Much of our information has come down to us on the wings of tradition. One generation has declared it to another. Our fathers and mothers have told us of the wonderful deliverances from trials and dangers incidental to pioneer life, while their faithful pastor labored with and prayed for them, as one who had power with the Almighty.


                                 FIRST PASTOR.


      "On April 21st, 1789, this church, then called Upper Raccoon, to distinguish it from one further down the stream, and Montours, a church 10 miles east, made a joint call for Rev. Joseph Patterson. He reserved his acceptance of that call till the next meeting of Presbytery on account of some unnamed difficulties between the two congregations."


      By the time of the next meeting of Presbytery these affairs were adjusted and the call was accepted. The following is a copy of the original call, and, as many of our congregation will recognize the names of their ancestors among the signers, we will give it in full:


To Mr. Joseph Patterson, Preacher of the Gospel.

      We, the subscribers, members of the united congregations of Montour Run and Upper Raccoon, being on sufficient grounds well satisfied with your ministerial qualifications, and having good hopes from our past experiences of your labors, that your ministration in the Gospel will be profitable to our spiritual interests, do earnestly call and desire you to undertake the pastoral office in said congregation, promising you, in the discharge of your duty, all proper support, encouragement, and obedience in the Lord.


And that you may be free from worldly cares and avocations, we hereby promise and oblige ourselves to pay you the sum of one hundred and twenty pounds, in regular annual payments, which sum is to be paid in the way and manner specified in our subscription papers accompanying this call; which sum we oblige ourselves to pay annually during the time of your being, and continuing the regular pastor of these united churches and congregations.


      In testimony thereof, we have respectfully subscribed our names this 9th day of April, 1789.


Wm. Reddick, John Stevenson, Torrence Phefil, John Miller Taylor, James Wilson, Benjamin Hall, Wm. Guy, Jr., James Peterson, Thomas Craft, John McDonald, Ehraim Burrell, Samuel Johnson, John Nesbit, Peter Kidd, Samuel Ewing, John Dunbar, John Benny, John Donaldson, Wm. Walker, David Hays, Joseph Cresswell, William Gordan, Wm. Stephenson, Robert Holmes, Wm. Turner, John Allen, Samuel Strain, Robert Marquis, Henry Rankin, William Flanaghen, Alex. H. Scott, John Kelso, James Reagh, Alexander McCandlass, James Robbin, Andrew Kinnely, John Glen, Robert Greenlies, John Elkins, Samuel Phillips, Wm. McCandlass, John Abercrombie, Alex. Wright, William Loury, Hugh Shearer, Alexander Reed, Wm. Thompson, James Bailey, William Kilbreth, Robert Crooks, John Kilbreth, John Forbits, James Miller, Alexander Kidd, Jr., Philip Richard, John Smith, William Anderson, Thomas Biggert, James McCoy, Hugh McCandlass, Nathaniel McCoy, Alexander Bailey, John Scott, Nehenniah Sharp, Alexander McCandlass, George Beil, Tho. White, John McMichael, Abraham Kirld, Isaac Rudawing,  Thomas Hays, Alexander Grey, James White, Jos. Scott, Esq., John Clark, Wm. Kirkpatric, Moses Hays, Wm. Roseberry, John Singer, Robert Potter, Henry Rankin, Thomas Scott, Isaac McMichael, Wm. Tucker, Sr., Roly Boyd, Thomas Hanna, Joseph Henry, John Bailey, Wm. Grey, Jessie Rankin, Alex. Burns, Moses Rose, Samuel Jeffrey, James Gaston, Wm. McCullough, John Hutchinson, John Smith, Samuel Hunter, James Scott, John Wright, Mary Wilson, Wm. Bailey, John Wilson, Christopher Smith, Benjamin Thompson, John Holmes, William Wilson, Daniel Stuart, William Russel, John Bavington, John Reed, John Cardike, James Stewart, James Bell, William Forbes, John Neal, John Dunlap, James Criswell, Matthew Bailey, John Short, George Long, Robert Clark, Samuel Scott, George Elliott, Henry McBride, Samuel Miller, W. Lee, Robert McMean, James Ewing, Abraham Russell, John McA. Dow, Henry Noble, James Ravencraft, Mary Cherry, William McGee, John McNare, James Montgomery, Robert Boyd, Peter Murphy, Robert Hall, John Carlyle, Gabriel Walker, Matthew Rankin, Robert Vance, Thomas Sprout, William McLaughlin, William Wallace, Jeremiah Write, James Sheers, John Wills, Andrew Harvat, William Rankin, Samuel Neely.


      In behalf of our respective congregations, we the subscribers do hereby oblige ourselves to be responsible to Mr. Patterson for the above sum.


      In witness thereof, we have hereunto set our hands and seal the day of grace and year above written


For Montours: Thos. Sprout, Samuey Jeffery, Samuel Walker, John McDow.


For Raccoon: Alex. Wright, William McCandlass, William Rankin, John Riddile, Alex. Bailey, John Dunlap, Matthew Bailey.



      Mr. Patterson continued to serve these two congregations for ten years, or until each became sufficiently strong to require the exclusive services of a pastor. On April 16th, 1799, he resigned the charge of Montours, devoting all his time to Raccoon.


      Mr. Patterson'S history is inseparably connected with the history of the Presbyterian Churches of Western Pennsylvania. The following sketch is culled from Old Redstone and History of Washington Presbytery:


      "He was born in the North of Ireland in 1752, noted for his early piety, received his first clear apprehension of the way of salvation, during an affectionate explanation of it by his father, while following the plow. At the age of ten years he, along with three or four little companions conducted a stated children's prayer-meeting. At the age of twenty he married Jane Moak, and soon after came to America. In 1776 he was teaching school near Philadelphia, and was present at the first reading of the Declaration of Independence. He left his school and volunteered in the American army. After leaving the army he lived for a short time in York County, Pa. In the fall of  1779 through the influence of Judge Edgar he came to Cross Creek, Washington Co., Pa. At that time he was a seceder with a strong prejudice against the use of hymns in the worship of God. His neighbor, Squire Graham, succeeded in changing his views on this subject, and afterwards he became very fond of singing hymns.


      In 1782 he was appointed an elder in Cross Creek. In the fall of 1785 (at the age of 33), he was received by the Presbytery as a candidate for the ministry, studied three years under his pastor, Rev. Jos. Smith, and was licensed to preach August 12th, 1788, at the age of 36. Eight months after he was installed pastor of Raccoon and Montours churches. On that occasion the Rev. Mr. Dod preached from Acts 20:28, "Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flocks over which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood." Mr. McMillan presided, and Mr. Robt. Finley gave the charge." This took place on the 27th meeting of Redstone Presbytery. There is no record of the names of officers or members of the congregation during the whole of his pastorate.


      The only record he has left of his work, is this brief memorandum, made on demitting his charge into the hands of Presbytery.


      "I resign my charge on account of bodily infirmities after being pastor of Raccoon Church for 27 years and 6 months for every day of which I need pardon through the blood of Christ."


                               EARLY EDUCATION.


      Our forefathers not only planned for the spiritual advancement of themselves and their descendants, but also soon began to plan for the higher intellectual training and culture under religious control.


      Among the few papers that have been preserved of Mr. Patterson is a long list of subscriptions taken by him in his two congregations in 1794, for the building of the academy at Cannonsburg.


      The following extract is taken from History of Jefferson College by Rev. Jos. Smith:


      "June 9th, 1794. We, whose names are hereunto signed, desirous to forward the Academy building at Canonsburg, do promise to pay or deliver into some mill in the bounds of the Rev. Joseph Patterson's congregation, the quantities of wheat or rye, annexed to our names, and deliver the receipts thereof to said Patterson on or before the present year."


           (A few names selected from a long list.)

      William Flanegan, 1 bushel of wheat, at 2 shillings.

      Robt. Moor, 2 bushels of wheat, at 2 shillings.

      James Laird, 4 bushels of wheat, at 2 shillings.

      Samuel Riddle, in money, 7s. 6d.

      John McMillan, in money, $1.00.

      Joseph Patterson, in money, $6.00.

      Mrs. Valandingham, 6 yrds. of linen.

      Alexander McCandless, 2 bushels of wheat.

      John Cardike (a pious negro), 2 bushels of wheat.

      Mrs. Nesbit, 3 yrds. of linen.

      Widow Riddle, 3 yrds. of linen, etc.


      The linen was delivered to the treasurer to be disposed of as opportunity permitted at 1s. 1-1/4d. (25 cents) per yrd. 


      Rev. Patterson's son Robert was the first to enroll his name as a student in Canonsburg Academy. A traditional story, familiar to us all, has been handed down, in regard to the payment of Mr. Patterson's subscription.


      Mr. Patterson was disappointed in not receiving some money with which he had expected to liquidate his subscriptions. He concluded to go to the meeting place, and make such a statement as would be satisfactory. He started from his home (which was one-quarter of a mile east of the church), as was his custom with his gun upon his shoulder. Passing through a grove of lofty oaks, between his home and the church, he kneeled down, and poured forth his troubles into the Almighty Father's ear. His devotions were interrupted by a rustling among the leaves. He opened his eyes, saw a panther approaching, which he shot. The bounty which he received for the scalp enabled him to redeem his subscription. 


                           EARLY MISSIONARY EFFORTS. 


      As early as 1800 these pioneer churches of Washington county combined and formed themselves into missionary societies. Money being scarce their contributions came principally in the products of the field from the men, and all the women which were wise-hearted, like their sisters of old, did spin with their hands and brought that which they had spun as an offering to the Lord.


      Each pastor in his turn, made a missionary tour of from one to four months either north or west of the Ohio River, laboring among the new settlers, or among the Indian tribes. These two distinct classes among which they labored, foreshadowed the two grand divisions of missionary work, Home and Foreign.    


      In 1801 Rev. Messrs. McCurdy, Marquis, Brice, McMillan and Patterson made this tour, a perilous and self-sacrificing undertaking in those days.  As an illustration of their privations Rev. Richard Lee at our centennial related the following conversation as occurring between Mr. McMillan and Mr. Patterson.  


      Patterson: I was sent with others by God and the churches upon a missionary tour to the Indians. We entered the deep forests, our only subsistence for days being corn, which we pounded fine between stones, boiled and mixed with bear’s grease. My stomach revolted at length against this, and I determined to carry the matter to the Lord. I said, Lord, I am on thy errand, doing thy work, but as a good master you should afford your laborer something which he can eat. I pray you do it this night. 


      McMillan: And did he answer?


      Patterson: Yes, that very night; he sent me nothing but corn and bear's grease, but with it he sent such a good appetite that I ate it with a relish until we got something else.    




      Extract from the Great Revivals of 1800 by Rev. William Speer, D.D.


      “It may almost be said the Presbyterian Church of Western Pennsylvania was born in a revival.


       "In 1778 Vances Fort, into which the families adjacent had been driven by the Indians, was the scene of a remarkable work. There was but one pious man in the fort, Joseph Patterson, a layman, an earnest and devoted Christian whose zeal had not waned even amid the storms and terrors of war. And during the long days and nights of besiegement he talked with his careless associates of an enemy more to be dreaded than the Indian and a death more terrible than the scalping knife. Deep seriousness filled every breast, and some twenty persons were there led to Christ. This was the nucleus of Cross Creek Church, which built its house of worship near the fort. Rev. Thomas Marquis who preached in that church for 33 years was one of the first converts in the fort through the instrumentality of Joseph Patterson. This was but the beginning of that wonderful work of grace, which was often accompanied by that strange   emotional phenomenon known as the “falling work," which spread over these infant churches for the next twenty-five years.


      "On the 10th of October, 1802, the Lord's Supper was administered in Raccoon Church. As many as the house could contain attended to social worship, and preaching throughout the day.  Divine worship was also carried on a considerable part of the night at the tent.  Many new awakenings took place through the night, and the social exercises continued until the public worship began on Monday.


      "Through this day many more were made to cry out in agony of soul, unable to sit or stand; some of them very notorious in vanity and profanity were struck to the ground and constrained to cry out aloud in bitter anguish of soul, Undone! undone! forever undone. Some who were considerably advanced  in years were in this situation, as well as many younger, who were crying for mercy, some of whom had been ringleaders in wickedness and impiety.


      "Towards evening the exercises were particularly solemn and powerful, and many persons of Raccoon Church were at this time awakened. The sweet savor and the power of the Holy Spirit continued with them and they were the happy instruments of bringing others to the Saviour." 


      Mr. Patterson was twice married. Jane Moak whom he married in Ireland was the mother of his eight children. His second wife, whom he married May 9th, 1812, was Miss Rebecca Leach, of Abbington, Pa.


      The ruling elders in Raccoon Church at the time his relationship with the church was dissolved (Oct. 6th, 1816) were John Riddile, Alexander Wright, William McCandless, Thomas Hays, Alexander Bailey, Thomas Millar, Benjamin Chestnut.  Rev. Patterson removed with his family to Pittsburg, spending his remaining days in evangelistic work among the poor, the sick and afflicted, distributing Bibles and tracts.


      Shortly before his death when the Western Theological Seminary was in the process of erection, he went to the Seminary, kneeling down, prayed in every room for all the lads that might thereafter occupy them.


      After his death his loving friends of Raccoon Church erected a cenotaph to his memory, which still stands but a few rods from the door of the present edifice, bearing the following inscription:



                             To the memory of the 

                            REV. JOSEPH PATTERSON

first pastor of Raccoon and Montour Run congregations, who died on the 4th February, 1832, in the 80th year of his age, and the 44th of his ministry.  This venerable servant of Christ was eminently distinguished among the fathers, in planting these Western Churches for zeal, piety and usefulness and his exemplary life, formed a practical commentary on the text of his last sermon: “The path of the just is as the shining light, that shineth more and more unto the perfect day.”


                               SECOND PASTOR.


      Rev. Moses Allen was born in Westmoreland county, Sept. 5th, 1780; was educated in Cannonsburg Academy, studied theology under Dr. McMillan, whose youngest daughter Catherine he married June, 1805. Was licensed to preach by the Presbytery of Ohio June 24th, 1807, and was ordained by the same presbytery Dec. 2nd, pastor of the churches of New Providence and Jefferson, Green county, Pa.


      This relationship was dissolved Oct. 16th, 1817, and on May 27th, 1817, he was installed pastor of Raccoon Church.


      The following impression of Rev. Moses Allen has been handed down to the writer from her mother:


      "Mr. Allen was tall, erect in person, with a grave somewhat austere cast of countenance, always neat in attire, always wore the regulation white neck-tie and carried an ivory-headed cane. His profession was plainly stamped upon his dignified bearing, an able theologian, a fine sermonizer, a clear speaker, a strong debater, an undefatigable catechizer and a firm disciplinarian." The records of the session abundantly show that Mr. Allen regarded church discipline as an ordinance of God and a means of grace.


      During Mr. Allen's pastorate Alexander Campbell, the founder of the sect of Campbellites or Disciples Church, who at that time lived in Bethany, Washington county, attempted to organize a society in accordance with his peculiar belief within the bounds of Raccoon Church. He and his followers had held religious services several times, and had succeeded in gathering quite an audience before Mr. Allen comprehended the situation. At all their succeeding meetings he was present, seating himself just in front of the speaker, and being well fitted both by training and his argumentative turn of mind, to respond to the invitations given by the speaker at the close of their religious exercises, to refute any of the doctrinal points set forth by them; this he did, showing their fallacy in such an effective way that the Campbellites soon ceased to make appointments within borders where Presbyterianism was so ably defended.


      Mr. Allen was active and aggressive both in and out of the pulpit, manifesting but little patience with the careless and thriftless members of his flock.


      He interested himself much in the location and improvement of the public roads, especially those which led to his church, and in his ardent anxiety for the good of the community and the firmness with which he held to his opinions, caused an estrangement or misunderstanding between him and some of his parishioners which eventually led him to seek another field of labor, much to the grief of his many fast friends, who would have stood by him to the last.


      Mr. Allen, like his predecessor, lived upon his own farm, located one-fourth mile northeast of the church. His family consisted of five sons and two daughters.


      During the twenty-two years in which he had charge of Raccoon church it grew in numbers and increased in strength. "He left this record: I preached in Raccoon church 2,685 sermons, administered the Lord's Supper 75 times, admitted to communion 327, baptized 557 children and 15 adults, and solemnized 195 marriages."


      At the close of Mr. Allen's ministry this church was regarded as among the largest and most important country charges in the Synod.


      Mr. Allen resigned his pastorate in the fall of 1838. The following April he accepted a call from the congregation of Crab Apple O., where he continued to labor with wonted fidelity and zeal until a short time before his death, which occurred January 16, 1846, aged 66. During his pastorate there were two elections of elders.


      In 1830 Robert Wallace, Garret Van Eman, Edward McDonald, Archibald McCandless. In 1836, John Sturgeon, David Miller, Robert Smith, Richard Donaldson.


      The church was without a pastor for two years. Tender memories spring up at the mention of the name of the third pastor.


                                 THIRD PASTOR.


      Rev. Clement V. McKaig, D.D., was born near New Lisbon, 0., July 12, 1814; graduated from Washington College, Pa., in 1834, and from Western Theological Seminary in 1837; was licensed to preach the Gospel by New Lisbon Presbytery April, 1840; installed pastor of Raccoon church June 17, 1841. Of medium size, fair complexion, neat in attire, with a dignified bearing. His preaching was plain, earnest, scriptural and sound. His best success and reputation were achieved as a pastor. The sick, afflicted and sorrowing, not only of his own flock, but also all grades and stations within the bounds of his church, found in Dr. McKaig a ready and willing sympathizer. His people, young and old, held him in high reverence, alike for his character and his work. His wisdom and prudence caused him to be often appointed by Presbytery to arbitrate disputes and to settle delicate and difficult questions among the churches.


      Dr. McKaig was married August 15, 1842, to Miss Jane B. Laughlin, of Pittsburg, whose superior character and great personal worth not only proved a crown to her husband, but a comfort and joy to the congregation. For eighteen years she faithfully filled this double relationship, dying July 26, 1860, in the bloom of womanhood, leaving six children, only three of whom are now living. During Dr. McKaig's ministry there was but one election of elders.


      In 1857 John Symington, Thomas Wilson, John S. Russell, J. S. Moore and Joseph Wallace were elected to that office.


      We find that among the first acts of this ministry was an earnest effort to awaken more interest in and increase the efficiency of the Sabbath-school. The following is from the church record:


      In April, 1843, the Session passed a series of resolutions with reference to the Sabbath-school, and ordered them to be read from the pulpit.


      “Resolved, That we believe it is the bounden duty of every Christian to co-operate with and by every proper means further the prosperity of the Sabbath-school, and especially to pray earnestly for the blessing of God upon it."


      In a sermon preached on a Thanksgiving Day near the close of his pastorate, Dr. McKaig makes this record:


      "In twenty-one years, 431 have been added to this church, 312 of these on examination. The average increase has been twenty per year. The highest number received any one year, 33 (in 1857). At the same time 83 members have died and 257 have been dismissed. At 84 communions there were only two where none were added. They are distinctly marked on my mind and on my record. I pray God none other such may ever occur. Four hundred and sixty-five children have been baptized, and in these twenty-one years our contributions to benevolences have amounted to $6,126. I have pleasure in recalling the fact that in our meetings of Session, from the first time I met with them, there has been uniform kindness, harmony and fraternal intercourse. Differences of opinion have been cordially and fully expressed, but no unkind or offensive word has ever been uttered. This Session has always been a peacemaker, while living at peace among themselves. This is a chief and honorable trait of Christian character, especially in a ruler of the church. This is no vain eulogy. Blessed are the peacemakers."


      At the close of Dr. McKaig's pastorate the fearful shadow of the great Civil War rested on the land, and political excitement interfered sadly with spiritual interests, peace and harmony of many of the churches; but through it all Raccoon Church was kept by the loving hand of God in peace.


      On account of an obstinate and protracted affection of the throat Dr. McKaig felt constrained, first to take a vacation, and finally to request a dissolution of the pastoral relation.


      December 18, 1865, a paper was adopted showing their estimate of his character and service. The following are extracts taken from it:


      “Notwithstanding repeated respites from active service, at the session of the Presbytery of Ohio, held in the month of April last, our beloved pastor deemed it his duty to ask for a dissolution of the tender ties, that through the revolving years of a quarter of a century have bound us together in the sacred relationship of pastor and people.


      “Averse even to consider the matter at the time the subject was named to the congregation, with the hope that a further relaxation from labor, and a short sojourn in a more invigorating climate might restore his health."


      "He closed his home and repaired to the healthful shores of Lake Superior, returning with his health and spirits much invigorated. Yet it seemed that his own judgment and the earnest advice of family relations still unite in a requisition of relief from the labors of this pulpit, and the pastoral care of a congregation so large and widely spread. In view of his long, earnest and well tried service, we now desire simply to record the tribute of gratitude and affection for a minister who has not failed to proclaim the whole counsel of God."


      In 1867 he sold his farm, upon which he had spent so many happy years, gathering his family together again in a home on Dallas avenue, Pittsburg. During his residence there he spent his later days, as health permitted, in evangelistic work among the weak suburban churches of the city, passing to his reward October 7, 1889, in his 75th year. He was buried beside his wife and three children in the family lot in Allegheny cemetery.


      This closes a brief history of three sainted pastors of Raccoon Church, each of them in his way instrumental in shaping and executing the work of the Gospel in this church--Joseph Patterson, a "kind, gentle, winning, pious father;" Moses Allen, "able in pulpit, rigid in discipline, persistent in catechising, resolute and faithful in everything in the shape of duty;" Clement V. McKaig, "a sympathizing friend, an accomplished Christian gentleman." Their ministry has been "all things to all men in order to win some.”


      We would fail in our task did we not here draw attention to the consecrated and devoted elders, who, together with these three pastors, sowed the seeds of gospel, of truth and love, the fruits of which in all their plentitude, comfort, joy and blessedness we now possess. Their names should be cherished as one of our most precious legacies.


      "We gather up with precious care

         What happy saints have left behind;

      Their writings in our memory bear,

         Their sayings on our faithful mind.

      Their works which traced them to the skies

         For patterns to ourselves we take,

      And dearly love and highly prize

         The mantle for the wearer's sake."


      Raccoon Church was without a pastor for nearly six years, but with no intermission of regular service. A call was made out for Rev. John Kerr, who, without formally accepting, labored here for three years with good success. During his administration 83 were added to the church roll. "He that soweth and he that reapeth may rejoice together."


      There was one election of elders during the interregnum. John Farrer, James M. Stevenson and John Kennedy were ordained elders June 26, 1869.


                         FOURTH PASTORATE.


      The present pastor, the fourth on the list, is the Rev. Greer McIlvaine Kerr. He is a native of Washington county, Pa., as were his parents and grandparents. He was baptized in Pigeon Creek Church by Dr. James Sloan; graduated at Westminster College in New Wilmington, Lawrence county, Pa., in the class of 1867, and at the Western Theological Seminary in Allegheny, Pa., in the class of 1871; was called by his congregation on March 27, 1871, and was ordained and installed by the Presbytery of Pittsburg on June 14, 1871. Married to Elizabeth J. Stevenson December 12, 1883. As this pastorate still continues, it is best to leave to future historians the task of writing the bulk of its chronicles and collecting its statistics. A few leading and prominent events that have occurred in the twenty-eight years of its continuance may not be deemed out of place. There have been added to the session, March 26, 1875, James Meloney and W. S. Russell; September 20, 1879, George C. Smith, S. C. Farrer and Dr. B. F. Hill; December 10, 1886, W. S. Campbell; June 19, 1893, W. S. Bailey and Thomas Pedicord. In the year 1897 Mr. John H. Wallace, of New York, whose father was a ruling elder in this church, gave $300 to put the old part of the graveyard in complete repair. The work was well done, and now this resting place of the fathers presents a very neat and tasteful appearance. Mr. Wallace also donated $20,000 to the Western Theological Seminary in Allegheny, Pa.


      In 1894 the late Jessie Scott bequeathed $1,000 to the trustees to be a permanent fund, the income from which is to be used to keep the cemetery in order, and also $2,000 to be a permanent fund, the income from which is to be used to support the church. 


      The whole amount of funds contributed to church expenses and benevolent purposes by this congregation in these twenty-eight years have been $83,876.


      During this pastorate 442 persons have been added to the church, 312 have been dismissed to other churches, and 147 have died. The total number of communicants reported to the Assembly April 1, 1899, was 215.






Annan, Mrs. Maria,

Annan, Lona M.,

Annan, William Burton,

Aten, Mrs. Sarah,

Aten, Mrs. Margaret,

Archibald, Isabel H.,

Archibald, Martha A.,

Ackelson, Mrs. Elizabeth,

Ackelson, Eleanor,

Bailey, Mrs. Margaret,

Bailey, Ann,

Bailey, W. S.,

Bailey, Mrs. Esther A.,

Bailey, Hester Alice,

Bailey, Matthew M.,

Bailey, Mrs. Genevea,

Bailey, Rachel C.,

Beck, Bobert,

Barnes, W. A.,

Barnes, Frances P.,

Barnes, Nettie E.,

Barnes, Minerva E.,

Barnes, Annie May,

Bruce, Margaret O.,

Brimner, James,

Brimner, Mrs. Mary M.,

Brunner, Charles E.,

Brooks, Mrs. Margaret Johnson,

Burnett, Clara M.,

Balliette, Harriet,

Berry, Mrs. Martha Vernia,

Campbell, W. C.,

Campbell, Mrs. Margaret,

Campbell, Annie E.,

Campbell, Watson,

Campbell, Esther,

Campbell, Mrs. Margaret,

Campbell, Annie M.,

Cook, Mrs. Mary,

Cook, Sewilla,

Cook, Thomas W.,

Connelly, Jane E.,

Campbell, Richard,

Donaldson, Ann E.,

Donaldson, Kate,

Donaldson, Mrs. Agnes,

Donaldson, Mary W.,

Dunbar, John,

Dunbar, Mrs. Abigail L.,

Dunbar, William,

Dunbar, Mrs. Nancy,

Dunlap, Mrs. Esther,

Dunlap, Margaret,

Dunlap, Mary C.,

Eaton, Henry,

Farrer, Mrs. Elizabeth,

Farrer, Jennie O.,

Farrer, W. H.,

Farrer, Mrs. Hester S.,

Farrer, Samuel A.,

Farrer, Mrs. Jennie O.,

Farrer, Richard C.,

Farrer, Mrs. Flora,

Farrer, John,

Farrer, Charles J.,

Farrer, Sym,

Farrer, Mrs. Mary A.,

Green, Mrs. Mary,

Gibson, William,

Goedicke, Louisa,

Hutchinson, James,

Hutchinson, Mrs. Susan,

Hutchinson, Margaret,

Harper, Detman,

Herron, Margaret J.,

Herron, Mary E ,

Hill, Dr. B. F.,

Hill, Mrs. E. J. Sturgeon,

Jardine, George,

Jardine, Mrs. Elizabeth,

Jardine, Emma,

Kerr, Mrs. Bessie,

Kerr, Mary,

Kelso, Mark,

Kelso, Mrs. Cornelia,

Kelso, George M.,

Kelso, Alex. A.,

Kelso, Mark A.,

Kane, Melvina M.,

Kelso, Margaret E.,

Klingensmith, Nettie Annan,

Kelso, William,

Kelso, Mrs. Sarah,

Kimberly, William,

Keifer, Mrs. M. Adeline,

Lester, Harry,

Lester, Mrs. Flora,

Lester, Frank,

Lester, Adellia,

Lester, Sadie K.,

McAdams, Mrs. Sarah,

Morrison, Mrs. Margaret,

Malone, Hattie,

Malone, Ann,

Malone, J. Sleeth,

McClurg, Alvin R.,

McClurg, Mrs. Josephine,

McBride, Alex.,

McBride, Mrs. Frances,

McBride, Sarah Ellen,

McFarland, Mrs. Elvira,

McFarland, Gertrude,

McFarland, Joalice,

McFarland, Robert Smith,

Matchett, Robinson,

Matchett, Mrs. Mary,

Matchett, Lilly,

McNall, James Alex.,

McNall, Mrs. Kate C.,

McNall, Martha,

Moore, Sarah E.,

McCutchinson, Mrs. Sarah,

McCuen, Mrs. Maria,

McCuen, Fred. S.,

Matchett, John,

Matchett, Mrs. Eva Alice,

Matchett, Mrs. Eva S.,

McConnel, John D. M.,

Morgan, John F.,

Neal, Mrs. Bell C.,

Neal, Mrs. Clara,

Neal, Mary A.,

Neal, Susan,

Pedicord, Thomas W.,

Pedicord, Mrs. Annie L .

Pedicord, Frank M.,

Parkinson, William,

Parkinson, Mrs. Mary,

Russell, W. S.,

Russell, Mrs. Mary,

Russell, John M.,

Russell, Mary Susanna,

Russell, Holland S.,

Russell, Clement K.,

Russell, Sarah Cynthia,

Russell, James C.,

Russell, Mrs. Eliza J.,

Russell, John Vincent,

Russell, Martha Jane,

Russell, Mrs. Mary W.,

Russell, Norman Neal,

Russell, Charles H.,

Russell, D. M.,

Russell, Mary Josephine,

Rhea, W. M.,

Rhea, Mrs. Nannie A.,

Rhea, Annie Theresa,

Rhea, James McElroy,

Rohrich, Rebekah,

Reed, Henry,

Reed, Margaret,

Robinson, Mrs. Mary,

Rommes, Anna Dora,

Stevenson, James,

Stevenson, Mrs. Hannah,

Stevenson, Alice,

Stevenson, Laura,

Stevenson, George L ,

Stevenson, Thomas E.,

Scott, Mrs. Sarah,

Sturgeon, Mary B.,

Sturgeon, Margaret S.,

Sturgeon, Josephine,

Smith, Sarah A.,

Simpson, W. J.,

Simpson, Mrs. Mary M.,

Simpson, Margaret A.,

Simpson, John,

Stevenson, Mrs. Martha,

Stevenson, Sarah,

Stevenson, M. Etta,

Stevenson, Sadie M.,

Stevenson, John J.,

Stevenson, William,

Stevenson, Mrs. Elizabeth D.,

Symington, A. H.,

Symington, Maud M.,

Symington, Margaret,

Smith, Harry A.,

Smith, Mrs. Blanch,

Smith, Harris,

Smith, Mrs. Eliza,

Scott, Mrs. Jennie R.,

Stuart, Alice,

Stuart, Emma,

Sly, Elmer,

Smith, D. W.,

Smith, Mrs. Jennie,

Smith, Mary Vincent,

Smith, Clara,

Trimble, John,

Taylor, Albert A.,

Todd, Elizabeth,

Wilson, James,

Wilson, Mrs. Mary A.,

Wilson, William,

Work, Winfield,

Work, Mrs. Elizabeth,

Work, Odessa May,

Wasson, Mrs. Margaret,

Wike, Isaac,

Wike, Mrs. Sarah,

Worstel, John,

Work, Mrs. Laura,

Yolton, Mrs. Nettie.




      One of the greatest honors that can be given a church is to see her sons enter the ministry. Raccoon Church has had the privilege of having twenty-one of her sons ordained to preach the Gospel. The first name on the list is that of Robert Porter, ordained in 1790. There have also three missionaries gone out from our number.




      In these days of multiplication of societies our church, with that conservative spirit which has always characterized all her movements, has adopted only those which are the most useful and permanent.




      We have no records of the organization of our Sabbath-school. Its existence antedates the memory of our oldest members. In the last sixty years we have had but five superintendents, Garret Van Eman, John Farrer, Joseph Wallace, John Kennedy and W. Simpson Russell. Under the present efficient superintendent and his faithful assistant, Rev. G. M. Kerr, our school is in a prosperous and flourishing condition, embracing among its members the hoary-headed octogenarian down to the infant of three summers. Our aim is to have the whole church in the Sabbath-school.


                          WOMAN'S MISSIONARY SOCIETY.


      If we wish to find the beginning of the first organized missionary work of the women of Raccoon Church we must go back to 1823. The object of this society was to constitute their pastor, Rev. Moses Allen, a life member of the American Tract Society. Officers: President, Rev. Moses Allen; treasurer, Miss Jane Scott (Mrs. Sturgeon); secretary, Miss Jane Moore. We, the Society of the present day, count ourselves privileged in perpetuating the example set by the Tryphenas and Tryphonas of the first half of the century, many of whom now on the membership roll are the lineal descendants of the faithful few who found their sacred warrant in the example of the wise-hearted Hebrew women who gave so freely of the labor of their hands to the construction of the Tabernacle.


      Our present Missionary Society was reorganized under the inspiration of Rev. Samuel McFarland and wife, on their first return from their mission field in Siam (he being one of the sons of the church). The first meeting was held July 1, 1874, and the following officers elected: President, Mrs. John Russell; vice president, Mrs. Martha Robinson; treasurer, Miss Mary B. Sturgeon; secretary, Mrs. Hamilton Kennedy. This vice president, for twenty-one years, never missed a meeting of the Society. During the last twenty-five years this Society has contributed $3,893.92, every dollar of which has been the free-will offering of the members of the Society. No collector has ever been appointed, nor has it been necessary to do so.


                         CHRISTIAN ENDEAVOR SOCIETY.


      This Society was organized July 30, 1891. It has now forty-three members, made up of the young people alone, under the supervision of the pastor. Already we can see a spirit of interest and loyalty to the church developing among its members and the church roll gradually increasing from their numbers.


      We have now placed before the members of Raccoon Church a brief sketch of the life and growth for 120 years. The recital of these facts will bring vividly to the memory of the older members the stirring events participated in by their ancestors, and will also recall many names and incidents impossible to place within the limits of this small book. But chiefly for the young and rising generation has this book been written, that they may realize more fully the rich heritage which God has bequeathed to them from such an ancestry, for "Surely the Lord is in this place."


Submitter: Marsha Richins

Submitter location: Columbia, MO

Title: Raccoon Church Cemetery--198 Names

Copyright owner: none, as far as I can tell




Transcriber: Marsha Richins

Transcriber's location: Columbia, MO

Transcription date: 12/00




This is part of what appears to be an undated mimographed document put out by Raccoon Church. The original list was compiled by Margaret Sturgeon (d. 1923) and Rev. G. M. Kerr (b. bef. 1847).


Candor, Pa. (Near Midway, Pa.)


Source:  198 Names

         Copied from old stones by Miss Margaret Sturgeon (d. 1923), as

         arranged alphabetically by the Rev. G. M. Kerr, D.D.  The notes of

         Mr. Kerr are the source of the following list; the whereabouts, if

         any, of Miss Sturgeon’s notes being unknown.




CAUTION -- Errors have been observed in the original typescript, and some of these recordings disagree with those in Miscellaneous Cemeteries of Washington Co., Vol. 3 (available at Citizens Library, Washington, PA).  These records should be used with care and verified by an independent source whenever possible.



George Allison      born 1775   died Jan.  8, 1840    Age 65

Martha, his wife         1788        Sep. 15, 1855        67

William McAdams          1785        Nov.  5, 186l        76

William McAdams          1796        Aug. 18, 1839        43

William Ayers            1780        Oct. 11, 1853        73



James Bigger             1779        Oct.  1, 1730         1

Martha Bigger            1712        May  20, 1780        78

John Bigger              1779        Nov. 11, 1808        29

Thomas Bigger            1740        Feb.  7, 1829        89

Ann Bailey               1746        Jan. 14, 1829        83

John Bailey              1765        Aug. 16, 1851        86

Margaret Bailey          1780        Jan. 20, 1845        65

Matthew Bailey           1740        Mar. 18, 1836        86

Thomas Bavington         1748        Oct. 27, 1829        81

Henry Bavington          1782        May  14, 1848        66

Maulda Bavington         1748        Oct. 27, 1829        81

Thomas Bavington         1792        Nov.  5, 1862        70



Henry Crooks             1743        Mar. 10, 1831        88

Jane, his wife           1752        July 16, 1816        64

Henry Crooks             1777        Nov. 15, 1868        91

Elizabeth, his wife      1785        Mar. 11, 1861        76

Margaret Crooks          1783        Sept.20, 1823        40

Samuel Christy           1782        Dec. 15, 1857        72

Mary, his wife           1775        Jan. 11, 1851        76

James Cavert             1751        Mar.  7, 1854       103

Sarah, his wife          1757        July 16, 1844        87

James Cavert             1793        Dec. 23, 1833        40

Mary Cavert              1762        Sept 18, 1802        40

John Cavert              1791        Jan. 28, 1849        58

Samuel Cochran           1773        Aug. 29, 1819        46

Sarah, his wife          1775        May   2, 1855        80

Prudence Cups            1791        Feb. 12, 1840        49

William Connelly         1755        May  10, 1848        83

Mary, his wife           1770        Mar. 17, 1848        78

Samuel Connor            1781        Dec. 17, 1842        61

Jane, his wife           1781        Nov.  7, 1826        45

Adam Casmer              1746        Jan.  2, 1836        90

John Campbell            1777        Dec. 20, 1876        89

Margaret, his wife       1788        Aug. 13, 1847        59

Jamison Cook             1797        Feb.  2, 1842        45

Benjamin Chestnut        1763        Dec. 25, 1843        80

Anna, his wife           1763        Mar.  8, 1836        73

Susan Clokey             1797        Jan. 22, 1823        25

James Connelly           1796        Mar.  7, 1870        74

Isabel, his wife         1799        Feb. 28, 1882        83

Rebecca Connelly         1789        Feb. 27, 1865        76

William Clark            1796        Jan. 31, 1881        85

Eliza, His wife          1798        Nov.  7, 1842        44

Tho. Clark               1761        May      1834        73

Jane, his wife           1772        Sep.     1838        64

Nancy Clark              1796                 1818        22

Mary Clark               1794        Sept 13, 1861        66

James Clark              1793        Jan. 12, 1852        59

Margaret, his wife       1792        Mar. 24, 1851        59

Mary M. Clark            1779        Aug. 23, 1823        44



John Donaldson      born 1747   died Aug. 11, 1804    Age 57

Jean Donaldson           1718        July  2, 1812        94

Richard Donaldson        1757        Apr. ll, 1813        55

Richard Donaldson        1793        Sept 13, 1874        81

Thomas Donaldson         1786        Apr.  8, l873        87

James Donaldson          1760        Apr.  6, 1838        78

Jane, his wife           1750        Sept 30, l839        79

John Donaldson           1756        May  20, 1845        89

James Dunbar             1756        May  20, 1845        89

Mary, his wife           1779        Dec. l5, 1830        51

Elizabeth Dailey         1792        Mar.  1, 1862        70

Alexander Dailey         1791        Sept 30, 1863        72

Sarah Dailey             1791        Mar. 30, 1872        81

Elizabeth Dunlap         1751        May  13, 1814        63

James Dunlap             1791        Sept 22, 1867        76



William Elder            1782        Feb.  2, 1857        75

Mary, his wife           1782        Oct. 25, 1847        65

David Elder              1772        Jan. 22, 1837        65



Arthur Forbes            1785        July 25, 1840        55

Andrew Falls             1773        Oct.  8, 1820        47

Hugh Ferguson            l79l        May  12, 1869        78

John Forsythe            1779        Mar. 27, 1847        68

Ann, his wife            1790        June  3, 1818        28

Samuel Farrar            1795        July  9, 1867        72

Elizabeth Farrar         1793        Mar.  8, 1885        92



Abigail Graham           l778        Jan. 16, 1850        62

William Galbreath        1796        Aug. 21, 1874        78

Robert Glenn             1785                 1837        52

Margaret, his wife       1785                 186O        85



Robert Hutchinson        1779        Aug.  7, 1844        65

Catharine Hill           1794        Oct. 23, 1875        81

Samuel Holmes            1775        Feb.  8, 1803        28



Samuel Jones             1799        Jan. 18, 1854        55

Ephraim Johnson          1769        June  3, 1845        76

Elizabeth, his wife      1784        Feb. 10, 1877        93

Susan Johnson            1799        Sept. 6, 1836        37



Thomas King              1743        Dec. 14, 1827        84

Sophia, his wife         1758        Aug. 10, 1833        75

Hugh King                1790        Dec. 16, 1832        42



John Lusk                1756        Mar. 18, 1842        86

Isabel Lusk              1786        Mar. 27, 1851        65

Mary Lusk                1795                 1815        20

James Laird              1748        Aug. 19, 1803        55

Daniel Link              l765        July 20, 1843        78

John Lewis               1784        Mar.  2, 1863        79

Margaret, his wife       1790        July 14, 1871        8l



Thomas Miller       born 1776   died Feb.  1, l836    age 60

Elizabeth his wife       1776        Sept l3, 1819        43

James Morrison           1762        Jan. 18, 1832        70

Phebe, his wife          1770        Nov. 22, 1840        70

Joseph Matchett          1787        Oct.  3, 1840        53

Hannah, his wife         1790        Oct.  5, 1863        73

Mary McCalsy             1766        Sept. 5, 1846        80

Timothy McCarty          1775        Apr. 25, 1858        83

Jane, his wife           1796        Aug.  5, 1845        59

Isaac Morgan             1787        Jan. 31, 1845        58

Margaret, his wife       1791        Sept 25, 1872        8l

John McClister           1797        Sept 15, 1798         1

John Meloni              1775        Feb. 21, 1849        64

Hugh McCandless          1767        Jan. 11, 1856        89

Jane, his wife           1768        Jan. 20, 1853        75

John McDonald            1738        Jan. 17, 1815        77

Martha, his wife         1740                 1830        90

James McDonald           1783        Apr.  6, 1863        80

Julia Ann, his wife      1799        Apr. 29, 1881        82

Edward McDonald          1792        May  30, 1867        75

John McClelland          1783        Feb. 22, 1835        52

Nancy McClelland         1785        Feb. 10, 1877        83

Alex McCandless          1746        Jan.  1, 1833        87

Wm. McCandless           1746        Dec. 24, 1826        80

Elizabeth, his wife      1786        Feb. 28, 1835        49

David Moore              1742        Apr. 13, 1795        53

John Moore               1770        Apr. 28, 1829        59

Samuel Melony            1773        Nov. 25, 1859        86

William Moore            1790                 1846        56

James McNall             1789        Mar. 15, 1872        83

Hugh Montgomery          1766        Feb. 17, 1846        80

Rebecca, his wife        1773        May  23, 1849        76



John Neil                1774        July  4, 1845        71



Mary Peeples             1715        Sept 25, 1807        82

Rev. Joseph Patterson    1752        Feb.  4, 1832        80

Jane, his wife           1760        Feb.  4, 1808       

Nancy Patterson          1775        Feb. 14, 1796        21

Esther Patterson         1791        Feb. 21, 1815        24

Benjamin Patterson       1789        Dec. 14, 1811        22

Charles Province         1787        Jan. 17, 1845        52

Margaret, his wife       1793

Josiah Pyles             1780        Nov. 28, 1873        93

Mary, his wife           1792        Mar. 19, 1875        83

Samuel Patterson         1789        Dec. 12, 1811        22



Elizabeth Reed           1748        Nov.  8, 1818        70

Mary Ross                1750                 1822        70

John Ramsey              1756        May  10, 1814        58



William Sturgeon    born 1756   died Aug. 28, 1936    age 8O

Mary, his wife           1759        Feb. 14, 1846        87

John Sturgeon            1784        Nov. 13, 1863        79

Jane, his wife           1795        Jan.  2, 1892        97

Joseph Scott             1764        Sept 25, 1822        58

Mary, his wife           1766        Dec.  9, 1822        56

John Stewart             1798        Mar. 30, 1825        27

Samuel Strain            1746        Sept. 8, 1830        84

Samuel Strain            1784        Aug. 22, 1859        85

Elizabeth Strain         1745        Sept 30, 1821        76

John Strain              1782        Nov.  1, 1843        61

James Stevenson          1770        Mar. 14, 1852        82

Elizabeth, his wife      1785        May  21, 1868        73

James Stevenson          1766        Sept 24, 1821        55

James Stevenson          1758        Sept. 6, 1813        55

Ann, his wife            1766        Feb. 25, 1821        55

John Stevenson           1789        Nov. 30, 186O        71

James Smith              1793        Jan.  6, 1829        36

Ann Strain               1797        Nov. 27, 1824        27

James Simpson            1783        May  26, 1838        55

Jane Scott               1767        Apr. 16, 1840        73

Samuel Scott             1782        Apr. 27, 1819        27

Alexander Scott          1775        Mar. 14, 1850        75

Mary Scott               1749        Feb.  6, 1811        62

Christopher Smith        1766        Sept 22, 1811        45

Sarah, his wife          1777        Oct.  2, 1825        48

Barbara Spence           1750        Aug. 16, 1829        70

Rob't. Scott             1789        Nov.  2, 1863        74

Fanny, his wife          1791        July 17, 1831        40

Mary Scott               1796        Aug. 30, 1880        84

Robert Stevenson         1788        Feb. 22, 1868        80

John G. Smith            1787        Nov.  1, 1889        92

Peter Symington          1759        Jan. 10, 1836        75

Margaret, his wife       1764        June  5, 1835        71

Martha J. Symington      1793        July  4, 1810        17

Nancy Smith              1768        Jan. 26, 1845        77

James Scroggs            1783        June 22, 1837        54



Samuel Trimmer           1776        Apr. 21, 1849        73



Garret Vaneman           1792        July  3, 1855        63

Rachel, his wife         1795        Jan.  8, 1843        48



David White              1779        July 14, 1854        75

Jane Walker              1726        Dec.  7, 1814        88

Ann Weaver               1782        Jan. 26, 1867        75

Hannah Williams          1782        Apr. 25, 1849        57

Rob't. Wallace           1785        Nov. 14, 1859        74

Elizabeth and            1789        Sept 16, 1829        40

Rebeggamba, wives        1785        Nov. 26, 1863        78





(Notes below are from the previous version. We will be removing these notes shortly.)

Raccoon Church was established by December 1778 at Candor, Pa., in Robinson township and was located near Beilor's Fort. According to the author of this church history, Beilor's Fort was immediately southeast of the church cemetery. The church was named after the nearest stream, which seems to have been the custom of the early settlers in western Pennsylvania.

In 1786, the congregation of this church was bounded by Clinton (Allegheny Co.) to the north, Hickory on the south, Noblestown (Allegheny Co.) on the east, and Burgettstown on the west. During some of its early period, thischurch was called "Upper Raccoon" to distinguish it from a church further downstream.

Apparently, the pastor of this church before 1816 kept no church records. If anyone knows the whereabouts of church records after 1816, please contact Marsha Richins. Also, if you wish to know the context in which any of the following names are mentioned or the given names of family members on the April 1, 1899, list, contact Marsha Richins.


(Includes members of both Raccoon Church and Montours Presbyterian Church, ten miles east of Raccoon Church, which for a time shared a pastor with Raccoon Church.)
John Abercrombie		William Anderson
John Allen			Aten family
Alexander Bailey		James Bailey
John Bailey			Matthew Bailey
William Bailey			John Bavington
George Bell			James Bell
John Benny			Mrs. Martha Bigger
Thomas Biggert			Robert Boyd
Roly Boyd		
Rev. Mr. Brice			Alex. Burns
Ehraim Burrell			John Cardike (a pious negro)
John Carlyle			Mary Cherry
Benjamin Chestnut		John and Jane Clark
Robert Clark			Thomas Craft
Joseph Cresswell		James Criswell
Crook family			Robert Crooks
Rev. Mr. Dod			John Donaldson
John McA. Dow			John Dunbar
John Dunlap			Judge Edgar
John Elkins			George Elliott
James Ewing			Samuel Ewing
Robt. Finley			William Flanaghen
William Forbes			John Forbits
James Gaston			John Glen
William Gordan			Squire Graham
Alexander Grey			Wm. Grey
Robert Greenlies		William Guy
Benjamin Hall			Robert Hall
Thomas Hanna			Andrew Harvat
David Hays			Moses Hays
Thomas Hays			Joseph Henry
John Holmes			Robert Holmes
Samuel Hunter			John Hutchinson
Samuel Jeffrey			Samuel Johnson
John Kelso			Alexander Kidd, Jr.
Peter Kidd			John Kilbreth
William Kilbreth		Andrew Kinnely
Wm. Kirkpatric			Abraham Kirld
Rebecca Leach			James Laird
W. Lee				George Long
William Loury			Robert Marquis
Rev. Thomas Marquis		Henry McBride
Alexander McCandlass		Hugh McCandlass
William McCandlass		McCarty family
James McCoy			Nathaniel McCoy
Wm. McCullough			Rev. Mr. McCurdy
John McDonald			McFarland family
William McGee			William McLaughlin
Robert McMean			Isaac McMichael
John McMichael			Rev. Jno. McMillan
John McNare			James Miller
Samuel Miller			Thomas Millar
Jane Moak			James Montgomery
Robt. Moor			Peter Murphy
John Neal			Samuel Neely
John Nesbit			Mrs. Nesbit
Henry Noble			Rev. Joseph Patterson
James Peterson			Torrence Phefil
Samuel Phillips			Robert Potter
Pyle family			Henry Rankin
Jessie Rankin			Matthew Rankin
William Rankin			James Ravencraft
James Reagh			Alexander Reed
John Reed			William Reddick
Philip Richard			John Riddile
Samuel Riddle			Widow Riddle
James Robbin			Moses Rose
Wm. Roseberry			John Rudawing
Abraham Russell			William Russel
Alex. H. Scott			James Scott
John Scott			Jos. Scott, Esq.
Samuel Scott			Thomas Scott
Nehenniah Sharp			Hugh Shearer
James Sheers			John Short
John Singer			Christopher Smith
John Smith			Rev. Joseph Smith
Thomas Sprout			Daniel Stuart
William Stephenson		John Stevenson
James Stewart			Samuel Strain
John Miller Taylor		Benjamin Thompson
William Thompson		Wm. Tucker, Sr.
William Turner			Mrs. Valandingham
Robert Vance			Gabriel Walker
William Walker			William Wallace
James White			Tho. White
John Wills			James Wilson
John Wilson			Mary Wilson
Rev. S. J. Wilson		William Wilson
Alexander Wright		Jeremiah Write
John Wright


Rev. Moses Allen		Alexander Campbell
Richard Donaldson		John Farrer
John Kennedy			Rev. John Kerr
Jane B. Laughlin		Edward McDonald
Archibald McCandless		Rev. Clement V. McKaig
Catharine McMillan		David Miller
J.S. Moore			Jane Moore
John S. Russell			Jane Scott (Mrs. Sturgeon)
Robert Smith			James M. Stevenson
John Sturgeon			John Symington
Garret Van Eman			Joseph Wallace
Robert Wallace			Thomas Wilson


W.S. Bailey			W.S. Campbell
S.C. Farrer			Dr. B.F. Hill
Mrs. Hamilton Kennedy		Rev. Greer McIlvaine Kerr
Rev. Samuel McFarland		James Meloney
Thomas Pedicord			Mrs. Martha Robinson
Mrs. John Russell		R.S. Russell
Jessie Scott			Dr. James Sloan
George C. Smith			Elizabeth J. Stevenson
Miss Mary B. Sturgeon		John H. Wallace


Ackelson, Annan, Archibald, Aten, Bailey, Balliette, 
Barnes, Beck, Berry, Brimner, Brooks, Bruce, Brunner, 
Burnett, Campbell, Connelly, Cook, Donaldson, Dunbar, 
Dunlap, Eaton, Farrer, Gibson, Goedicke, Green, Harper,
Herron, Hill, Hutchinson, Jardine, Kane, Keifer, 
Kelso, Kerr, Kimberly, Klingensmith, Lester, Malone, 
Matchett, McAdams, McBride, McClurg, McConnel, McCuen, 
McCutchinson, McFarland, McNall, Moore, Morgan, Morrison,
Neal, Parkinson, Pedicord, Reed, Rhea, Robinson, Rohrich, 
Rommes, Russell, Scott, Simpson, Sly, Smith, Stevenson, 
Stuart, Sturgeon, Symington, Taylor, Todd, Trimble, 
Wasson, Wike, Wilson, Work, Worstel, Yolton