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John and Mary Winton 

     John and Mary Winton are the heads of our large clan.   You will note possibly, might or probably throughout my information.  If you have documented information, I would love to hear from you!

   John Winton was born circa 1700/20, possibly in Ireland or Scotland.  He died circa 1766 most likely in Cumberland Co., Pennsylvania.

  In 1725 in what was to become Cumberland County, Pennsylvania - The Scotch-Irish came to Cumberland Valley settling along the Conodoguinet Creek and then along the Yellow Breeches.  In 1750 Cumberland County encompassed 555 square miles, carved from Lancaster County on land west of the Susquehanna River.

Our John Winton first appears on land patent records in 1743 with his neighbor, a Scotch-Irish immigrant, John McClellan. Possibly our John Winton's ancestors were Scottish-Presbyterians who had colonized Northern Ireland for the British throne.     Many of the Scotch-Irish became disenchanted with the British throne in the early 1700's and began to look for relief from high taxes and tenants laws.  Having lost their ties with their homeland they headed for America in record numbers looking for independence.

  The Scotch-Irish took positions of power in their new land serving as governors and U. S presidents.   Benjamin Harrison's maternal  ancestors founded the Irwinton Mills south of the John Winton homestead in Pennsylvania.

   Life was a challenge in this new world with its abundant resources.  The Native Americans reacted with aggression as the immigrants encroached on their lands.  Whole families were slaughtered, children killed and scalped while herding cattle.    Each family member did his part in producing food and clothing. Their homes were crude cabins with little privacy. 

John Winton settled in the Kittochtinny Valley near the west branch of the Conococheaque ( Clear Water ) Creek.  At that time there were less than 800 people living in the region.  Mary Winton's death was recorded in the Upper West Conococheaque records in 1775.

   In December 1745 increased conflicts with the Native Americans brought petitions from  the Kittochtinny Valley settlers to the government for local militias.  An official list of "Officers of the Associated  Regiment of Lancaster County, over  the River Susquehanna" was approved by the provincial government on 29 March 1748.  John Winton was the lieutenant for Peters Township, serving under his neighbors, Major William Maxwell and Ensign James Wilkey.

  In 1749 the provincial government honored a petition for a new county and Cumberland County was founded in January 1750.  On 23 October 1750 John Winton was appointed to serve on a grand jury in Cumberland County.  John is listed on tax list in Peter Township in 1751.  In 1751, Peters Township covered the entire southwest part of modern Franklin County, including Peters, Montgomery, Warren and part of St. Thomas Townships.

   In 1749 James Gilbreath, Esquire, voided the patent on John Winton's 200 acre farm.   However, possession was nine-tenths the law on the frontier and John lived on this land until his death in 1766. His wife, Mary and son, William continued paying taxes on this land for two years after his death, Galbreath secured a patent for the Winton farm in 1767 but never lived there, selling the property to his son-in-law Charles Torrence in 1777,  who later sold  it to a McClellan in-law, Joseph Grubb, Jr. in 1800.

  John paid taxes in Peters Township in Cumberland County, Pennyslvania in the years:  1751, 1753, 1762, 1763, 1764, 1766.   John died in 1766 and Mary paid taxes in 1768 and 1769.

   John's wife Mary might have been a McCoy or a McClellan/d.  Their marriage might have taken place in 1740 or so. It is not known if they married before coming to the colonies.

    Mary was born circa 1700/20 and died 4 Dec 1775 in Cumberland Co., Pennsylvania, probably buried in Cumberland Co., Pennsylvania.  Church records from First Presbyterian Church in Mercersburg, Pennsylvania indicate she died at the home of John McClelland.  Family researchers speculate that either Mary or John Winton were related to John McClelland or his wife, Rhoda.  Rhoda was a very popular name in the Winton family with numerous little girls carrying that name.

John and Mary Winton's issue:

       The only known child:
William Winton

       Possible other children:
       ii. Rhoda Winton
       iii. George Winton