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The 1942 Letter

The 1942 Letter

Tim L. Daugherty

It began with a letter between cousins. The first written record of how these three families were connected. The letter was from Martha A. Daugherty, daughter of Ed Daugherty and Delbert O. Daugherty, son of Will Daugherty. The letter was written in 1942. They were trying to locate records in Beaver County, PA for the births or deaths of their Daugherty family ancestors. The answer back from the clerk of court regretted to inform them that birth and death records were not required prior to 1916. However there is one sentence in that letter that contains a lot of information, “…He had a half brother named William Moorehead[1], and a brother or uncle named Michael Daugherty. He married Euphemia Welch (Welsh) and had a large family, mostly girls…” The “he” in this sentence is John Daugherty (1815-1887). Here is what we know to be fact:

1. John Daugherty had a half brother named William Moorehead.

2. John Daugherty had a brother or uncle named Michael Daugherty.

3. John Daugherty married Euphemia Welch or Welsh.

4. John Daugherty and Euphemia had a large family of mostly girls.

What about the evidence to support the four statements above? Is there any?

William Moorehead


According to the headstone on his grave in the cemetery at Warner Chapel Church at Tribble, Mason County, WV, William Moorehead was born in Virginia in the year 1813, December 10th. His wife buried beside him is Elizabeth born October 12, 1809 and died January 18, 1896. We know from this that John Daugherty could not have married William’s mother before the year 1813. We do not know where in Virginia William was born. His earliest appearance on any record that we are aware of is the census record. On the 1840 census for Allegheny County, PA in the city of Pittsburg (west ward) we find William Moorehead listed with his wife and one young daughter.
Who are the children of William and Elizabeth? Here we list them, all born in Allegheny County, PA.

1. Mary M. born July 28, 1838. Died December 11, 1908. Buried at Warner Church Mason County, WV. Married Griffith Rayburn.

2. Lucinda C. born November 20, 1840. She died July 28, 1900 in Iowa. She married George Atkinson

3. Emily born around 1843.

4. George W. born around 1846. Married Sarah

5. William A[2]. born January 24, 1849. Died January 29, 1927. Married Matilda A. Martin.

6. Anna E. born around 1850. Married Perry M. Warner

William and Elizabeth are still living in Allegheny County, 7th ward of Pittsburg, PA by the time of the 1850 census.

Between 1850 and 1860 William and Elizabeth move to Mason County, Virginia (later West Virginia). They are living in District 1, Arbuckle Post Office, Mason County, VA.

In 1854 William Moorehead purchases from Abraham Allinder[3] 600 acres of land in Mason County, VA.

This is a photo of William Moorhead’s tombstone at Warner Church

This is a photo of Elizabeth Moorhead’s tombstone at Warner Church

William Moorehead and his wife Elizabeth move to Mason County, VA before the 1860 census dated July 23, 1860.

In February of 1872 William Moorehead purchases for the use and benefit of John and Delilah Daugherty[4] 320 ½ acres of land situated in Putnam County, WV from Thomas and Ella Bond. Thomas Bond is a coal and timber dealer who lives in New York. William Moorhead is appointed as trustee for John and Delilah, both minor children.

So let’s put it together and see if William Moorehead looks and acts like a half-brother to John Daugherty.

Fact: He is from the same area geographically.

Fact: He is appointed trustee for two minor children of John Daugherty.

Fact: He is the one who found and secured the purchase of the land in Putnam County.

It is in all likelihood William Moorehead who is responsible for the Daugherty family leaving Beaver County, PA and moving to Putnam County, WV; to land they had not yet seen, solely on the word of William Moorehead. It certainly appears that William Moorehead had some kind of influence on John Daugherty. So in regard to fact number 1 on page one of this paper, William is indeed John’s half-brother.

Elizabeth Moorehead


What about Elizabeth Moorehead? Who is she? How does she fit into the puzzle?
The answers to these questions will shed more light on the associations of these families.

Mr. James (Jim) Catmull has posted to Ancestry.com that Elizabeth Moorehead is nee Allinder. This is given support from the fact that William Moorehead purchased 600 acres of land in Mason County, VA from an Abraham Allinder. In the census record, Abraham Allinder says that he was born in Fayette County, PA around 1824/25. There must be some kind of blood relation between Abraham Allinder and Elizabeth Allinder Moorehead. To determine that we need to return to Fayette County, PA for the year 1830 and see if there is an Allinder who could be the father of Abraham.

On the 1830 census for Fayette County, PA there is a John Allinder listed with a male child 5 to 10 years of age and a male child 15 to 20 years of age. There are no other Allinder’s on the 1830 census for Fayette County, PA. Let’s go back ten years to 1820 and see if we can find a father for John Allinder.

On the 1820 census for Fayette County, PA there is a John Allinder (born 1794 – 1804) and Sarah Vernon[5] (born 1794 – 1804) with no children. There is also a William Allinder with the following children.


Born 1804 to 1810 – 1

Born 1775 or before – 1 (William died before the 1830 census)


Born 1804 to 1810 – 1 (Elizabeth married William Moorehead)

Born 1794 to 1804 – 2 (no other information)

Born 1775 or before – 2 (died before the 1830 census)

After reviewing the census records we can make the following observations based on the available information.

1. Abraham Allinder born circa 1825 is the son of John Allinder.

2. John Allinder born circa 1794 to 1804 is the son of William Allinder.

3. Elizabeth Allinder born 1809 and married William Moorehead is the daughter of

William Allinder and is an aunt to Abraham Allinder.

So we see that Abraham Allinder sold land in Mason County, VA in 1854 to his Aunt and Uncle William and Elizabeth Allinder Moorehead. That is how the half brother of John Daugherty came to settle in Mason County, VA.

Nancy Daugherty, Mother of William Moorehead.

If William Moorehead and John Daugherty are half-brothers then they must have had the same mother but different fathers. The mother of John Daugherty (1815 -1887) is Nancy. She was born 1784 in Maryland. She lived until after the 1860 census was taken but before the 1860 mortality schedule was taken in 1859. She was young when she married the father of John Daugherty. One account says that her husband, also John Daugherty (circa 1740 to 1848) was past 80 years of age when his children by Nancy were born. Two written accounts give his age as 104 and 108 at death. Nancy was about 31 years old when she married John Daugherty and he was about 80. John Daugherty was born in Ireland sometime around 1740 to 1750 and lived to a great old age of over 100 years. He immigrated to the United States and settled in Beaver County, Pennsylvania between 1800 and 1810. Where he was prior to his arrival in Beaver County is unknown. Nancy was born in Maryland around 1784. How and when she arrived in Beaver County, PA is not known. William Moorehead says that he was born in Virginia in 1813. There are many Moorehead families in Virginia 1800 to 1820, but which one is his?
Nancy became a widow prior to 1820 because we find her and John Daugherty married and living in Beaver County, PA. Was John Daugherty in Virginia between 1810 and 1820? He is living in Beaver County, PA on the 1810 census. The obituary of his daughter, Elizabeth Daugherty Day says that in 1807 she moved with her father and family from Washington County, PA to Beaver County, PA.

1850 census of North Sewickley Township, Beaver County, PA

Nancy is in household number 11 with her son Manassa Daugherty

Nancy is 66 years old on the 1850 census and she is dead before the mortality schedule is taken in 1860 for members of the household who died in 1859. Her death therefore occurs after 1850 and before 1859.

There are more questions than answers where Nancy Moorehead Daugherty is concerned. John Daugherty had grown children by the time of his marriage to Nancy, perhaps one of these children lived in Virginia and he was visiting when he met and married Nancy. Did William Moorehead have more Moorehead siblings? Why was William Moorehead in Allegheny County in the city of Pittsburg in 1850? For now we are content to say that Nancy married a Mr. Moorehead by whom she had at least one child, a son, William Moorehead born 1813 somewhere in Virginia. Before 1820 Nancy has married a much older widower John Daugherty. She has four more children by John and he is past 80 years old when they are all born. John lives to a great age of over 100 years (104 or 108) and Nancy dies between 1850 and 1859. How, where and when John and Nancy met each other is an unsolved mystery waiting to be solved. For her John Daugherty was probably a financially secure bet for her and her son. Old John must have been physically fit and able to keep a much younger wife. Nancy remained faithful to him till death. Old John was a Catholic. Was Nancy Catholic too?

Statement number one of the 1942 letter is proven to be correct. William Moorehead is a half-brother to John Daugherty.

Michael Daugherty

Died March 1826

The last will and testament of Michael Daugherty of Beaver County, PA

Michael uttered this nuncupative will in March of 1826. It was witnessed by James Daugherty and Daniel McGuire. This Michael Daugherty is an uncle to John Daugherty. He is one of the grown sons of Old John. James Daugherty is also a brother to Michael. James would eventually settle in Mercer County, PA with his wife Elizabeth Armstrong. Michael does not name his heirs but his land is to be divided into four equal shares, presumably for his children or heirs.

Statement number two of the 1942 letter is proven to be correct. Michael Daugherty was an uncle to John Daugherty.

Euphemia Welsh

1820 to 1871

Euphemia Welsh is by the process of elimination the daughter of William Welsh and Beulah Cooper McClure. She was born around 1820 in Chippewa Township, Beaver County, PA. Because of Euphemia’s death in 1871, she is not named in her mother’s will of 1874. What evidence is there to place Euphemia in the family of William Welsh and Beulah C. McClure? We will consider at least four pieces of circumstantial evidence.

Number one. “Effie” is a nickname for Euphemia. Effie as a given name appears in the family of William and Beulah Welsh’s children.

Number two. William Welsh was a stone mason who cut and supplied stone for the Erie Canal. There is a family tradition that John Daugherty also cut and supplied stone for the Erie Canal.

Number three. John and Euphemia’s first child is named “William” probably after her father.

Number four. “Hiram” is a name that is common in the Meek family associated with the Welsh family.

The family of William Welsh and Beulah Cooper McClure included the following children:

1. Sidnah Garrett born June 22, 1814.

2. Seth McClure born May 22, 1819.

3. Euphemia “Effie” born 1820.

4. James Peck born 1822.

5. Mary born 1825.

6. Anna born April 30, 1827.

7. Beulah born 1830.

8. George Washington born 1830.

9. Benjamin Franklin born 1833.

Statement number three of the letter of 1942 appears to be proven correct. John Daugherty was married to Euphemia Welsh, daughter of William Welsh and Beulah Cooper McClure.

Statement number four of the letter of 1942 is proved by seeing the 1860 census. This is the only census which lists all of the children of John and Euphemia. Several children die, marry or disappear from the census records after 1860. There were ten children, mostly girls.

1860 Census for North Sewickley Township, Beaver County, PA

Page A

Page B

[1] The spelling of Moorehead will be used throughout this paper except where rendered as Moorhead.

[2] Known as “Wesley.” Buried at Walker Chapel Church, Putnam County, WV.

[3] The spelling of Allinder will be used throughout this paper.

[4] Brother and sister, children of John and Euphemia Daugherty.

[5] Sarah Vernon’s name provided by Okey Simmons from his research on the Allinder line.

The 1942 Letter

Owner/SourceTim L. Daugherty
Linked toSource: S89414

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