Broad Valley Orchard

Main menu:

Site search




William Dunn (a review)


I admit, I have been looking for the ancestors of my great-great-grandfather William (?middle name – George Jr?) Dunn for the last 3 years.  I have been in a lot of archives, and down many blind research alleys, but have not yet succeeded.  So I’ll write what I have.  With any luck, some of you out there who might have the answers will Google in his name, and be taken to my essay here.

I only have two ‘guess-timates’ of when and where William was born.  First, I have seen his 9 July1903 obituary in the Altoona Times, which states he died at his son John’s house in Duncansville, aged 86 years, meaning he was born about 1817.  I have also looked in the Blair Co. 1885-1905 Death Register and found him recorded as being born in that year in Bedford County, referred to as Mother Bedford for all the new counties formed from it.  Now Bedford Co. back then was really big, covering much of Central and Western Pa.

The second bit of evidence is in John Woolf Jordan’s 1912 Genealogical and Personal History of Beaver County, Pa. I believe this record was written by my grand-uncle Allen Bascum Dunn, and it has been passed on to him by Old William’s son,my great-grandfather Thomas Henry Dunn (c. 1855-1943), and his mother-in-law Mary Fulford Davis, when they were living in newly established Ambridge, Pa., in about 1910.

They wrote ” The Dunn Family was represented in two of the early wars of our country, William George Dunn (Sr. ?), who died in Hollidaysburg, County, Pa., had been a soldier in the War of 1812, one of the band who constructed Admiral Perry’s fleet in Presque Isle Bay; while his father (un-named) fought under Generals Anthony Wayne and Israel Putnam in the war for independence.  William George Dunn {Jr.?} died at the marvelous age of ninety-seven years.  Thomas (my gt-gf) was born in Hollidaysburg, Blair county, Pa. February 4, 1858+ {this as about right- the article then goes on to Thomas’ sons.}.

I feel this family written article was written with the accuracy of aging memories.  I have twice visited the Pa. Archives searching the scant records of these early American Wars.  I have searched, but not found the correct William Dunn, there.  A War of 1812 veteran is buried there, but his family told me they were all from New York.  I therefore have nothing solid about William George Dunn Sr.

I have also searched the Revolutionary War records for (first name unknown) Dunn, who may have served under Generals Wayne and Putnam.

I have indeed found in the Pa. frontier militia from Bedford Co., under the command of Captain Francis Moore, there were two Dunns at Wayne’s camp near Albany, NY. on Dec 17 , 1776.  Michael died soon after arriving at camp, but Joseph survived at that time.  Captain Moore’s company served at the ill-fated Battle , in the 13th Pa. Regiment.

Colonel of Engineers (later General) Rufus Putnam Jr., did indeed serve under General Wayne in later battles, building fortifications in the Hudson Valley.  I have no records of Joseph Dunn after the Albany camp.

So, I guess I don’t have this puzzle solved.  Thus, I hope one of you who might have the missing pieces will contact me.  The e-mail of this aged and creaky website is OOC, so I’ll post my personal e-mail address =  I don’t really worry about spammers and scammers – we are on dial-up with a very slow computer with nothing of value in it.  Plus, I rather believe in open source honesty.

Thom Dunn Marti

Related articles