The majority of the information below was given to my mother from her now deceased cousin, Madeline Clark from Missouri. She compiled our family genealogy in the 1940's. I have tried to build on that information by researching via the internet and by writing letters to Houghton Hall, a Library in Norfolk, England, a Johnston "Clan" in Ireland, etc., and communicating with several people on Genforum. Unfortunately, I didn't have much luck with my letter correspondence.
James Johnston(e) had two brothers named Jacob and Isaac Johnston(e).
James Johnston came to America with his wife "Nancy" Anne Walpole, who was born at Houghton Hall, Norfolk, England
6 April 1685. "They had eloped". Her parents were Colonel Robert Walpole and Mary Burwell, daughter of Sir Jeffery Burwell. "Nancy" Ann Walpole was the 12th child of 19 children born to Robert and Mary. She had been the "maid of honor" or "maid in waiting" to Queen Caroline, wife of King George II. Their 5th son was Sir Robert Walpole, who became the 1st Prime Minister under King George I and King George II.
Since Shady Grove was sometimes listed as Antrim Township and Franklin County was often refered to as Cumberland County, it's parent county, it took me a while to put some of the puzzle pieces of my ancestry hunt together. In 1751, Antrim Township, Cumberland County would have included present day Antrim, Quincy, and Washington Townships, i.e. the entire southeastern corner of modern Franklin county.
James Johnston Sr. and Nancy (Walpole) Johnston settled in Shady Gove, Franklin County, Pennsylvania. According to my source, Madeline (Lake) Clark, they had two daughters, Mary and Sarah Johnston, who were both born in Shady Grove, Franklin County, Pa. The Genealogy of Charles David Satterfield list Sarah as their only daughter, which I don't believe is correct.
1. Mary Johnston was born in 1728, married Samuel Johnston, and died 5 Nov 1794. Samuel was born in Conogocheague (Greencastle), Franklin Co., Pa. in 1727 and he died on 4 April 1777. They were both buried in Middle Spring Church Cemetery, Cumberland Co., Pa. They had one son named Isaac Johnston who was born in Cumberland Co., Pa. in 1750 and died in 1825.
2. Sarah Johnston was born 10 July 1736, married #1. Thomas Johnston Sr. and #2. Henry Gordon, and died in 1812. Thomas Johnston Sr. was born in 1732. They had one son named Thomas Johnston Jr. who was born in 1753 in Greencastle, Franklin Co, Pa. He died in Jefferson Co., Missouri in 1830. He married Martha Glenn in 1769 or 1770. I have a lot of information on their children if you want it, just let me know. I have Henry Gordon's birth year as 1734 and death year as 1809. Is this correct?
After Nancy's death, James Johnston Sr. married Mrs. Elizabeth Brown Findley, daughter of Cornet Brown. Their children were:
#1. Col. James J. Johnston born in 1741 & died in 1814, and was buried in the Johnston Family Cemetary. He was in the Pan Militia 1776-1777 - Greencastle, Pa. Reference: "Abstract of Graves of Revolutionary Patriots" Serial 9787 Volume # 5.
#2. Col. Thomas Johnston born 1743, married Martha Beatty, and died in 1819.
#3. Dr. Robert Johnston born 21 July 1745 & died 25 July 1808. It is said that Robert was a Surgeon with the rank of Major-General on George Washinton's staff. Reference: "Abstract of Graves of Revolutionary Patriots" Serial 9787 Voume #5.
#4. John Johnston born 1747, married Rebecca Smith, and died 21 Oct 1826.
#5. Elizabeth Johnston
#6. Martha Johnston
All of James Johnston's children were born in Shady Grove, Franklin Co., Pa., which is were he lived until his death in 1765. James Johnston had been buried, originally, in the Johnston Family cemetary near Stull Road, northeast of Shady Grove. It is behind a dwelling and cannot be seen from the road. Some of the older markers were moved to Cedar Hill Cemetary before 1970. The new tombstone that was put in the Cedar Hill Cemetary for James Johnston Sr. has these words on it:
BORN IN THE NORTH OF IRELAND
DIED A.D. 1765
FOUND DOCUMENTS STILL EXIST
HE SETTLED ON THE LAND ON
WHICH HE DIED AS EARLY AS
1735 AND WAS PROBABLY
THE FIRST WHITE SETTLER IN WHAT IS NOW ANTRIM
TOWNSHIP, FRANKLIN CO.
Col. Thomas Johnston's tombstone is next to his father James Johnston's "new" tombstone in the Cedar Hill Cemetary.
Col. Thomas Johnston's marker has his wife's name, Martha Beatty, on it also. There are flat markers nearby for James's other son Dr. Robert Johnston and James's daughter Elizabeth Johnston.
I found a short paragraph in the "Wills" of Franklin County, Pa., on the internet, that stated that James Johnston's sons, James J. Johnston and Thomas Johnston, witnessed the Will of Henry Beaty on 27 Oct 1771...who was Thomas Johnston's father-in-law. Thomas was married to Martha Beatty. The Surnames are spelled differently, but names were often spelled differently because many official documents were signed by someone other than the family member due to the fact that there were some family members that didn't know how to spell or write their names; therefore their signatures were "x's" and witnessed by another person who signed their name, as it sounded, under the "x". These different spellings cause a lot of problems for those of us searching for records of our ancestors.
Jame's brother, Isaac, had come to America at the same time and had settled in Greencastle, a nearby town. Isaac's son Thomas Sr. married James's daughter Sarah. Isaac's other son, Samuel, married James's daughter Mary.
I like your theory that "James could have been born in Northern Ireland and educated in England".
I was actually upset when I first read the will of James Johnston. I couldn't believe that he hadn't mentioned Sarah. Who knows what could have happened. I thought, perhaps, that she was so well-to-do that he didn't think that she needed to inherit anything from him or he may have been angry with her at the time that he wrote his will. We will probably never know.
I hope that I have helped you. If you ever come across any information that you think may help my research, I would appreciate it if you would share it with me. My email addresses are: Windydonna@govisalia.net and DoveRaoul@excite.com.
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