Week 27: Extended Family

July theme: Identity

My husband’s sixth great-grandparents were Philip Ferree and Leah Dubois, who had nine children. My husband comes through child #8, Joel, who was a gunsmith in Revolution times. But this post is not about Joel’s line. It’s about his brother’s family.

The third child of Philip and Leah was Abraham, born Aug 1715. In 1736 he married his second cousin (via the Dubois line), Sarah “Elizabeth” Van Elting. He and Elizabeth had seven children, including daughter Rebecca, who was born 21 Jan 1742. On 5 May 1761 she married David H. Shriver Sr. at the First Reformed Congregation of Lancaster, PA.

Excerpt of Abraham Ferree’s will, naming daughter Rebecca, wife of David Shriver.

You see where this is going, don’t you?

David Shriver brought his wife to Little Pipe Creek, Frederick Co, MD where he cleared land, erected a mill, and became an active and prominent citizen. He served over 30 years in Maryland’s General Assembly. He and Rebecca had nine children, the eldest of which was Andrew, born 7 Nov 1762.

Andrew Shriver married Elizabeth Schulze in 1786 at the German Evangelical Lutheran Church in Baltimore. They moved to Littlestown, PA for a short time, where Andrew kept a store and tavern. He then established a home at Union Mills (MD), initially in partnership with his brother David Jr, and later alone. There he operated a mill, a tannery, a store, and farmed. He was also a Justice of the Peace and postmaster. https://unionmills.org/ Andrew and Elizabeth had eleven children, including tenth child, Joseph (1806), and sixth child William (1796).

Union Mills Grist mill, National Register of Historic Properties – https://mht.maryland.gov/nr/NRDetail.aspx?NRID=48

Now we get to follow two lines for a short while.

Joseph Shriver was born 11 Jan 1806 at Union Mills. The 1850 census says he is a cashier at “CB.” (Cumberland Bank.)  He came to work at the bank at the request of his uncle, David Shriver Jr., who was president. The 1870 census indicates he owned property worth $6000 and personal estate worth $100,000. The 1880 census says Joseph is the President of First National Bank (formerly Cumberland Bank). He also was president of Cumberland Gaslight Company, was at one time director of the B&O Railroad. He married Henrietta Jane Causten, and they had 10 children, including fourth child, Henry. 

William Shriver (Joseph’s brother) was born 23 Oct 1793 while the family was living in Littlestown, PA. He married Mary Margaret Josephine Owings. They lived in Union Mills, across the street from the main house, on the family homestead. William had charge of the main mill. William’s wife and children were Roman Catholic, and William converted to Catholicism late in life. They had thirteen children, including eleventh child Thomas Herbert.

Civil War era photo of William and Mary’s children: Standing: Mary Owings, Benjamin Franklin, Christopher Columbus, Mark Owings, Albert, Thomas Herbert, Andrew Keiser, Emma (Sister Frances deSalles, Sister of Charity). Seated: William Tell, Elizabeth, James, Sarah Clementine, John Lawrence.

During the Civil War, the Shriver family was divided in their loyalties. Joseph was a Union man, and William supported the Confederacy. Some of their sons and nephews served on opposing sides.

Henry Shriver, son of Joseph, was born 9 Aug 1841. He served in the Maryland infantry, Potomac Home Brigade (Union) during the Civil War. He owned a drug store in Cumberland, where he lived all his life. He married Sarah Van Lear Perry about 1870. The family belonged to Emmanuel Episcopal Church in Cumberland. They had four children, the youngest of which was Robert Sargent.

Thomas Herbert Shriver, son of William, and cousin to Henry, was born 19 Feb 1846. He served in the Maryland Cavalry (Confederate) during the Civil War. Along with one of his brothers, he was entrusted with the milling business at Union Mills. He also served a term each in the State House and Senate. His obit says, “Possessed of large farming, manufacturing and banking interests, General Shriver was noted as a capable business man who combined with shrewd management of his own property a keen interest in public affairs.” (The “General” title appears to have been an honorary one. He was a private during the war.) He married Elizabeth Rosalie Lawson. Hilda was the eldest of their four children.

Robert Sargent Shriver, son of Henry, was born 12 Jan 1878 in Cumberland, MD. His obituary says he was an investment counselor, a prominent Catholic layman (he apparently converted upon marriage, as his family was still Protestant), and active in Red Cross work. His gravestone says “businessman, banker, patriot, ardent lover of his wife, his children, his country, and of God The Father, Son, & Holy Spirit.” He married his second cousin, Hilda Shriver, on 1 June 1910 at St. Mary’s Chapel, Union Mills, MD. She was born 2 Nov 1883. They had two sons, and named the younger one after his dad.

Robert Sargent Shriver Jr was born 9 Nov 1915 in Westminster, MD. He was a US ambassador to France, head of the US Peace Corps, vice president of the Merchandise Mart in Chicago, president of the Chicago Board of Education, and had a rather famous brother-in-law. He married Eunice Mary Kennedy in 1953.

The Evansvills Courier, 24 May 1953

They had five children: Robert Sargent III, Maria Owings (Schwarzenegger), Timothy Perry, Mark Kennedy, and Anthony Paul Kennedy.

They are seventh cousins to my husband.

We’re close, of course. 😉

Or as my brother-in-law, who doesn’t think much of genealogy, says, “So  – not really related, huh?”



  1. Kathleen Stahl says:

    I love this. I have a line like this that brings me to Anderson Cooper. And of course, we are also close. Haha.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. litprof4 says:

    What an interesting blog! You outlined your family so well. Congratulations on all of your hard work.


    1. ferreestyle says:

      Thank you for those kind words!


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