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THE STORY AS I KNOW IT
Margaret Ralston was born about 1700 maybe
in Quinby, Scotland. - A Genealogy by Eva
Laughlin LeBlanc named Descendants of John Laughlin
from the Atlantic to the Pacific is available from
the LDS library in 1991. The information on Margaret's
parents comes from that source. There is now
additional information online in Roots that add to this,
but none have actual documentation. I can find no
current place called Quinby or Quenbey Scotland nor
She was definitely related to David Ralston and
there is stronger evidence that she is related, and very
likely the daughter or granddaughter of Andrew Ralston.
It was said he was born in Ireland and emigrated to
America about 1728. He had property in Cumberland
County Pennsylvania. Much of the story following
relates to the Deed Record for Andrew Ralston.
There is a strong belief on the web that Margaret
Ralston married Anthony
White, and with the Deed records I concur that
it is very likely they wed about 1720 possibly in
Armagh Northern Ireland.
Now to the Deeds.
Cumberland County PA Deed Book B1-2 The deed
states that on Dec. 4, 1760 Andrew Ralston, deceased of West Pennsborough
Twp granted to Anthony
White of Middletown Twp. 152.10 pounds for
Improvement on east side of Big Spring "being the one half
of Andrew Ralston
deceased plantation. David
Ralston has the south side of the said plantation
bounded the east by William
Laughlin and on the south east by John Hodge and open to
the Barrons. Witnesses were James Laughlin and Allen Leeper.
Cumberland County PA Deed Book B2-4
The north moiety of tract formerly possessed by Andrew Ralston, now
deceased, who gr. Dec. 4, 1760 to Anthony White, who
lately died intestate and whose admrs petitioned
Cumberland Ct. Orphans Court. The court ordered a
public sale May 21, 1764, the sale was held June 4,
White and David
Ralston were the admirs. of Anthony White,
deceased yeoman of West Pennsborough Twp. The 200
- 250 acres was granted to Jospeh Jacobs for 238 pounds. the land was
bounded on the north by William Laughlin, southeast by
John Hodge, south by David Ralston and
barrens, southeast and west by the Big Spring. Witnesses
were William Plunket
and William McCoskey
These Deed transcriptions come from Deed Book B
1766-1769. There seems to be possible
errors. In the first William Laughlin is in
the east. on the second in the north. Then in
the second it states that Big Spring is in the south east
and west. Not sure how that is possible. It
would be very nice to see the actual map of the property.
From this we can suggest that Margaret was Anthony White's
wife. It has been suggested and it fits what we are
given that Margaret
was the sister of David
Ralston and daughter of Andrew Ralston.
Deed B2-4 notes that the Orphans Court was
petitioned. It would be very helpful to read that
The LeBlanc piece said that in the 1750s Mary White married John Laughlin in
and John Laughlin
had a son named Anthony.
He was born October 1764, just about 6 months after Anthony White
died. Hence naming their son after her recently
If a crude map is drawn of the deed property, all are
seen to be related. It may all have belonged to Andrew
Ralston to start with. That needs to be
And finally. there are records in the Cumberland County
PA Historical Society that do connect Laughlin and White families.
Court House Record #24
W Estate Inventory of Anthony White,
deceased Feb. 20, 1764. James
Laughlin and Patrick
McFarlance filed the inventory May 21,
1765. The first item listed in the Inventory is his
whiskey still. James Laughlin would be William's
brother. An interesting aside is that the
Laughlin family were from a small village just south
of Bushmills Brewery in Northern Ireland.
I believe the mention of "Big Springs to the west, may
well refer to the church near the spring as there was no
town as of yet.
Big Spring Creek is beautiful, shallow and clear to the bottom in 2009. It winds through lovely farm land for 4-5 miles to the Laughlin Mill - built by William Laughlin. The Mill was in the family for over 100 years. Our family? - I believe there had to be a connection, but do not know what it was. The original meeting house was constrcuted in 1737 and the stone structure in 1789. Newville (New Village) was founded in 1790 when the Big Spring Presbyterian Church laid out the town on their land and sold the lots. Therefore, all of the Ralston land mentioned above would be just east of Newtown, as the town is on the west side of the Spring.
Margaret and Anthony White probably moved into the
area of Big Spring maybe by 1737 or very near there
after. It is stated on the web that they had 4
children. However, as Anthony died
intestate, I know of no direct sources.
Descendants of John Laughlin noted above states that
Mary White wed John Laughlin. I don't
know of the source of the other children but those
mentioned online are
1. Mary White born 1725 in Scotland, wed John Laughlin c 1750 in Pennsylvania
2. Thomas White
3. Samuel White
4. David White
Anthony White died intestate by Dec. 4, 1760 which is when the Deed B1-2 noted Anthony White, deceased and Margaret White was his admin. then and still when the sale of the land was reported to the court in August 19, 1764 in Deed B2-4. It is not known how much longer Margaret survived him. By 1764 she would have been in her 60s. We do not know when she died. We would guess they are both buried at the Big Spring Presbyterian Church cemetery - now called John Graham Memorial Cemetery.
If you know the answer please CONTACT US
1. Where was Margaret born?
2. Search for immigration records for the White family.
3. Find the Orphan Courts records for Anthony
White's young children.
4. When and where did she die?
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Date created: 11/17/2013
Date edited 7/4/2016