The Lounsbury Tree
Family Newsletter #31 Spring 1999 Jim Jurista - Editor


By the time you read this, spring will have sprung for most of you! It’s a safe bet that here in Cazenovia we’ll have a few more cold nights before spring really sets in. I know how many of you look forward to receiving the Tree, and that you’ve probably been expecting this issue for at least a month. I hope you will forgive the delay and that you will enjoy this issue.

It’s been a busy time for Aimee and me. I left my old job with Logical Design Solutions for a new position as Information Technology Director responsible for strategic planning at The MONY Group (formerly Mutual of New York) in Syracuse. I had been spending three to five days per week in New Jersey and Pennsylvania; this move has given me more time to be home and to have a "regular" schedule. Now I work "normal" eight-to-six days.

This is especially important because Aimee and I are expecting our first child in early June! Of course we are very excited, as are both our families. I expect that we will be incredibly busy between now and June, and even busier for the next eighteen years or so. I know that our child will benefit from all of the research and support of my extended "L" family!

I want to thank everyone who wrote to me; your thoughts and comments about the Tree mean a lot to me, and they are certainly a wonderful reward for the work it takes to create this newsletter. Many of you commented on the terrific job that Al Lounsbury has done over the years in making the Tree so interesting to read, and I couldn’t agree more. Al has told me that he loved editing the Tree. I’ve talked to him a couple of times since the last issue was published, and I think he’s even busier than he was while he was editor!

In this issue, I’ve gone to slightly larger type so that those of you with less-than-perfect eyesight can read more easily. As always, please send your suggestions and I will do my best to incorporate them into the newsletter. Also, any content that you’d like to send – including obituaries, birth announcements, reunion news, research notes, or just stories of general interest to the "L" community – are welcome.

I hope you enjoy reading this issue of the Tree as much as I enjoyed making it. Please review the subscription information listed below to check the status of your subscription and learn how to continue receiving the Tree. Also be sure to check out the information on this page about getting Internet access to the Tree. All of the contents of each new Tree issue will be available to review on-line at your convenience. Thanks for reading! 

Subscribing to The "L" Tree

Subscriptions to the Tree are $4 for United States residents and $5 (in U.S. funds) for Canadians. For that price, which covers materials and postage costs, you will receive two issues (one full year) of the Tree. Also, the full text of all issues since #30 (Fall 1998) is available on the Internet free of charge. See below for more information.

If you received this copy of the Tree in the mail, you will notice a date on the address label. This is the expiration date of your current subscription. Because of the recent transition of the Tree, and because I did not include explicit renewal information in the last issue, I have chosen to send this issue to all subscribers as of the Fall 1998 issue. If you’ve noticed your subscription has expired but you would not like to renew, do nothing and please enjoy this issue with my compliments. If you would like to renew, please send the full-year price to cover the cost of this issue and the Fall 1999 Tree.

To subscribe, please send a check made out to me (Jim Jurista) at the following address:

The Lounsbury Tree
3905 East Rd
Cazenovia, NY 13035-9476

I believe I misplaced one or two checks sent to me since the last issue; please let me know if you have sent me a check and it has not yet been cashed. I apologize for any inconvenience that this may have caused you.

"L" Tree On-Line

Many of the readers of the Tree have access to home computers or to shared computers at libraries or schools. If you’re in this group, you’ll be happy to know that you can explore more family information on the Internet. Just point your web software to:

Here you’ll find information about reunions, genealogy resources, an on-line family tree, research assistance, and discussion groups. It’s easy to use and fun; give it a try today!

From The Mailbag

Much "L" correspondence comes to me via the Internet. If you have Internet access, please respond to these letters via electronic mail. If you do not have such access, and no postal address is provided, please respond to me directly:

Jim Jurista – The Lounsbury Tree
3905 East Rd
Cazenovia, NY 13035-9476
I will ensure that your response is forwarded appropriately.

November 16, 1998 (via Internet) from Jillian Eaton
Respond to:


My name is Jillian and I am looking for information on my family tree. I only can trace back to my great grandfather, Enic LOUNSBERRY. He married Selia DOUCETTE, who had a child, Joe Lounsberry. Joe then married Jerry ROWCLIFFE, who then had Shelly LOUNSBERRY, my mother. I would appreciate any information. Thank you!

November 19, 1998 (via Internet) from Alice Burnworth (Mowery)
Respond to:

Catherine Elizabeth(Sarah) LOUNSBURY – married Milton MAPLE on June 23. 1856 in Franklin Co., Indiana. This is my great-grandmother. I am trying to find info on her. Thank you.

Alice Burnworth
RD2 Box 274,
Confluence, PA 15424

November 23, 1998 (via Internet) from Joyce L. Bruce
Respond to:

Seeking the father of William Gay LOUNSBERRY, Senior. He possibly was born in Alabama or North Carolina. His son was born in Alabama about 1816. His name may be any or none of the following: Preston Lawrence Lounsberry, Peter Lounsberry, William Lounsberry.

Joyce L Bruce
1102 Taylor Drive
Sulphur, La.70663-5958

December 5, 1999 (via Internet) from Paul J. Lareau
Respond to:

Seeking Mary (Marcy) LOWNSBERRY (or variant spelling) who married Joseph LANNING. Daughter Rachel married James SKINNER and lived in Ulysses, Tompkins Co, NY, where they are buried. Any information! Just found this family after a 30 year search for Rachel's parents.

Paul J. Lareau
135 East Viking Drive #301
Little Canada, MN 55117

December 26, 1999 (via Internet) from Heather Beers
Respond to:

I am looking for information on my grandfather's family. His name was Robert C. LOUNSBERY, and he was born in Brooklyn, New York to Mary PENDERGAST on July 6, 1915. He was given the last name Lounsbery even though his father is listed as unknown on his birth certificate. We would really like to find information on anyone that might be related to him. Thanks.

Heather Beers
3430 Sumac Ct
Apt 108
Jackson, MI 49202

December 28, 1998 (via Internet) from Pat Harper
Respond to:

Looking for a John W. LANSBERRY, Tucker Co., W.Va., I think was part of the Lounsbury family with a spelling change. I think he first married Mary DUMIRE and then Mahaley Elizabeth REEL. He died March 1909 in Tucker Co. or Randolph Co., W.Va. Thanks for any help.


December 29, 1998 (via Internet) from Bradley Lounsbury Sisson
Respond to:

I am a great grandson of Eldora Leona LOUNSBURY (1868-1943), daughter of Vernon Washington Lounsbury (1843-1877) and Frances Maria MACKNIGHT; sd. Vernon W. L. is son of Stephen Alonzo Lounsbury (1823-1882) and Mary Ann Lounsbury; sd Stephen Alonzo Lounsbury is son of Stephen Lounsbury (b. 1786) and Sara Lane (1798-1895); sd Stephen Lounsbury is son of Nehemiah Lounsbury (d. ca 1805) and Sara (??); sd Nehemiah L. is son of a Henry L. I am interested in obtaining information which establishes the link of Nehemiah and Henry, as well as clarifying just which Henry" is involved. I do not have the name of the wife of Henry, father to Nehemiah. It is possible that this "Henry" is the son of Henry L. who married Mercy SCOFIELD. Any information would be most appreciated.


B.L. Sisson

January 7, 1999 (via Internet) from Carole Ott Land
Respond to:

Looking for information on parents of Sarah Lorena LANDSBURY b. 7/1837 in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, d. 11/1912 in Lansing, MI. Her father's name was John Lounsbury. Believe he was born in PA and moved to Canada, probably a Loyalist. Sarah married Cyrus Meredith, also born in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. they produced at least two children, Charles Meredith and Mary Meredith. Any information or leads greatly appreciated. Thanks.

Carole Ott Land

January 16, 1999 (via Internet) from Tamara Lonsbury Egolf
Respond to:

I did not see any "Lonsbury" surnames on your listings. Do you see them showing up anywhere on the tree and do you know at what time the "U" was dropped for us? I am a descendant of William Henry Lonsbury and Nehemiah Lonsbury or Lounsbury. Not sure of the dates but I am 40, William would be my great grandfather and Nehemiah, my great-great I believe. My brother in law Mike has done all the research and he has the information at his home. My dad is Clyde Frederick Lonsbury and his father was Fred Lonsbury from the Angola, Indiana area.

Thank you for your information,

Tamara Egolf

January 26, 1999 (via Internet) from Sharon Otis
Respond to:

Need parents and siblings of Eliza Lounsbury. Buried at Bethlemhem Presby. Church Cemetery, Orange Co, NY. She married 1818 Orange Co, NY John McGill b abt 1787 Cornwall, Orange, NY, d 1867 Cornwall, Orange NY.

Sharon Otis
1304 Texas St.
Hope, Arkansas 71801

February 17, 1999 (via Internet) from Linda Louise (Roehrig) Deeren
Respond to:

Looking for my family tree. Great great grandmother was Susan Lounsberry. I think she married a Jacob Farr.I believe they are the parents of a Jackson Farr who married a Margaret J. Brown.

Linda Louise (Roehrig) Deeren
3801 Brook Dr.
Traverse City, MI 49684

February 23, 1999 from Daniel N. Bickford

My great, great grandfather was John L. Lounsberry. He was born in Rehoboth, Bristol County, MA 19 July 1783. He married first Deborah Skinner in Rensselaerville, Albany County, NY 26 May 1806. This is according to an old bible record copied by my great aunt Jennie Lounsberry Hiller of Penn Yan, NY and sent to me in 1968.

I never saw that bible nor do I have a photo copy of any part of it. I was just beginning my search for ancestors and did not know the importance of proving my sources. Ever since, I have been looking for corroborating evidence. I have found no public records to verify these statements.

There is information from other Lounsberry relatives that lead us to believe that John was a son of Nathan Lounsberry. That he had an older brother named Nathan and that they were both probably born in Massachusetts. John and Nathan both purchased land from the Pulteney Estate on 15 July 1814. The lengthy document in Steuben County Deed Book 23 pages 492-493 tells about the parcel purchased and later sold my Nathan Lounsberry.

While it does not name a brother, it does tell us something about Nathan. He kept most of this property until 1835when he sold the remainder to one George S. Osborn. How long Nathan lived in Pulteney is not known. He did return to Rensselaervill where he and his wife Sarah executed the legal documents for the sale of the property.

I would be glad to send a copy of this land record to anyone who is interested.


Daniel N. (Dan) Bickford
1810 Vincennes Road
Richmond, VA 23229-4237

March 10, 1999 (via Internet) from Richard James Lounsbery
Respond to:

Looking for descendents of William Lounsbery, Warwick N.Y. and descendents of Arthur Christian, Beacon N.Y.

March 17, 1999 (via Internet) from John J. Lounsberry
Respond to:

Seeking information about grandparents Grover Lounsberry (1887 NY) and his wife Margaret Crocker Lounsberry.

March 1999 from Bob Spiers

I received the following query by mail; it was originally published in the January/February 1999 edition of Heritage Quest magazine and is reprinted here by permission – Jim

Any info on William G. LOUNSBERRY, LANSBURY, or LOWNSBERRY b c1816-20 in AL, or FL; or poss LA, or SC; m Chrissie SMITH. Other poss spellings: LANSBERRY/LONSBURY, SANSBURY/SONSBURY. #Joyce BRUCE, 1102 Taylor, Sulphur, LA 70663.
Bob Spiers
Connecticut Ancestry Society, Inc.
Post Office Box 249
Stamford, CT 06904-0249.


From the 1998 Greenville International "L" Reunion
Above left, L to R: ?, Al Lounsbury, ?, ?, Pauline Brown
Above right, L to R: Robert Spiers, Lavina Lounsbury, J.C. (Jake) Lounsbury


Charlotte Lounsberry Mottaz of Springfield, IL sent the article at right to the Tree. Charlotte attended the 1998 reunion in Balsam Shade (see "L" tree Fall 1998 issue) and was kind enough to send an article from her local paper. Charlotte writes:

My sister Betty Kincaid and I attended the Balsam Shade L…b…y Reunion last August, but I didn’t get around to putting it in a local paper until December. "The Petersburg Observer" is published in the town nearest to Oakford, Illinois. Oakford is the village where the Lounsberrys settled when they left New York.

I checked the information in the article with Lloyd and Nancy Lounsberry and as near as we could remember, the information is correct. While doing a little sightseeing after the reunion,Betty and I saw a painting in the Hyde Park Museum by Ida V. Lounsberry of Newbury, NY. It was not dated but the staff thought it was probably painted around 1900.

While on a tour this fall to Churchill, Manitoba, we stayed overnight in Winnipeg, and I noticed here were three Lounsberrys listed in the telephone directory (I forgot exactly how they spelled Lounsberry).

We had a great time at the reunion and were thrilled to find out about all the Lounsberrys.

There certainly are LOTS of L’s out there in the world. In fact, over ten percent of subscribers to this newsletter are Canadian! There were a few Canadian L’s at last year’s reunion; they got together for the photograph below: 

Reunions, continued

Virginia Lounsbury Lipsky of Ellensburg, WA writes:

I’ve enclosed a picture taken last June (1998) in Albany, Ore of 8 out of 11 LOUNSBURY cousins. Our grandparents were Myra Ann Hicks and Eugene Edward Lounsbury. They were both born in NY and also married there in Jul 1897 at Bliss, Wyoming Co. 1st son Harold was born Jul 1899 at Perry, NY.

They moved to Ore @ 1901 and had the following children: 2nd son Florin b. 1902 Portland, OR; 3rd son Alton b. 1905 Boring OR; 4th son Earl b. 1907 Rockwood OR; 5th son Cecil b. 1909 Rockwood OR; 6th daug Laura b. 1912 Rockwood OR -- all in Multnomah County.

Myra’s parents were Nora Jane HUNT and Orlando W. HICKS.

Eugene’s parents were Jennie (Jane) KELDER and George LOUNSBURY

George’s parents: Catherine A ? and Isaac LOUNSBURY

Isaacs’s parents: Bethiah DRAKE and James LOUNSBURY.

All of NY.

In the picture from left to right are: Bernice CLAYPOOL, daughter of Alton; Dean LOUNSBURY, son of Alton; Judy LINDLEY, daughter of Alton; Lynne LOUNSBURY, daughter of Harold; Barbara SYMONS, daughter of Florin; Virginia LIPSKY, daughter of Earl; Carol PORTER, daughter of Harold; and "Dusty" Ray LOUNSBURY, son of Earl

This was the first gathering in 7 years. Hope to have another this summer.

Coat of Arms

It seems there is great interest in whether the "L" family has noble links and whether a coat of arms exists for the family. Raymond Lounsbury researched possible links to nobility in his 1976 book Lounsbury: Origin, Meaning and Significance. Raymond comes to the following conclusion on page 19, at the end of chapter two:

No coat of arms has ever been granted to any person with the surname of Lounsbury. However, male members of the Lounsbury family in America who are interested can base their claim to the coat of arms of Reginald fitz Peter, baron, and Lord of Lounesburgh 1248-1286 A.D., on their descent from Thomas, son of Reginald. Reginald’s coat of arms "bore gules, three lyonceux ramant or."

Preserving History

History Buff Helps Ensure Oliver House Future

Finger Lakes Times

PENN YAN, N.Y. – The Oliver House Museum recently received a substantial legacy from a woman who loved local history.

Ruth Lounsbery, who died Nov. 16, 1997, in Elmira, at 93, left the historical society $86,000, which was received in December.

"This money means wonderful things," said Jane Davis of Jerusalem, a museum director and town of Jerusalem historian.

The legacy arrives just two years after directors contemplated shutting down the large brick home at 200 Main St., which would have locked away a huge collection of artifacts, costumes, and genalogical material.

Davis was one of the new board members who joined up so save the museum. "It made me pale just to hear the museum might close," said Davis. "That our wonderful collection could be dispersed just made me shudder."

Although finances have stabilized since the hiring of executive director Idelle Dillon two years ago, Davis noted the legacy will give the museum even greater security.

"We won’t be at death’s door every weekend, and have to have another cookie sale," said Davis.

Plans are not yet final on how to best use the legacy. Dillon said about $10,000 will buy four computer stations to replace a single under-powered computer. "And strong sentiment exists to set up an endowment so the legacy will continue to strengthen the Oliver House’s future," she said.

The new computers will allow the three-person staff and volunteers to complete an ambitious indexing project, which will make it possible to instantly retrieve artifacts and information. The museum will also buy a digital camera and invest in other technology. "We want to do a better job recording and perserving our history and offer better services," said Dillon.

The museum, which operates on an annual budget of about $50,000, attracts thousands of visitors each year from all over the country, as well as Yates County residents. "We touch a lot of lives in a year," said Dillon, who said she plans to set up a web page to disseminate information about museum programs and attract even more visitors.

Lounsbery’s legacy was made in honor of her parents, Melville and Nettie Baggerly Lounsbery, who owned and operated the general store in Potter from 1888 to 1923. Melville Lounsbery died in 1949, his wife in 1963.

The family left Potter more than 70 years ago, eventually moving to 311 Main St. in Penn Yan and later to Stark Avenue. Ruth Lounsbery was a 1922 graduate of Penn Yan Academy. She earned a bachelor’s degree from Syracuse University in 1927 and did post-graduate work in music at Columbia University and New York University, both in New York City.

Davis said Lounsbery, a single woman, then spent 40 years teaching vocal music primarily at elementary schools on Long Island, starting in Westhampton Beach. Later she was supervisor of vocal music in the Baldwin, Long Island, elementary schools. During World War II, she drove a Red Cross ambulance at air bases in Long Island, transporting soldiers wounded in Europe to New York hospitals.

Miss Lounsbery’s obituary mentioned that she retired from teaching in 1967, moving to Sky Loch village apartments in Dundee. In 1984 she moved with a sister to Bethany Village, a retirement community in Elmira. Miss Lounsbery was a member of First Presbyterian Church of Horseheads, the Elmira Athenaeum Club, the Horseheads Historical Society, the Arnot Art Museum and the Friends of the Steele Memorial Library.

Miss Lounsbery died at St. Joseph’s Hospital in Elmira, and is buried next to her parents in the Nettle Valley Cemetery near Potter. Predeceased by a sister, Ethelyn Gapen, and brother, Dean Lounsbery, she was survived by a niece and several cousins, including Florence Middlebrook of Penn Yan, and Mrs. Leon Straw of Clifton Springs.

Former museum director Virtinia Gibbs said Lounsbery visited the Oliver House more than 20 years ago bearing gifts. "I remember best a marvelous coverlet woven by a Benton weaver," said Gibbs. "She had a strong sense that what she had was part of this county’s past and she wanted it to be preserved and appreciated."

And now that will surely happen. Dillon intends to winnow through the collection and put together a Lounsbery exhibit in the not too distant future.

Davis said she is hopeful other people will follow Lounsbery’s example and remember the museum in their wills or through memorials. That is, giving the society a donation rather than spending money on funeral flowers.

Davis said the board of directors never wants to be in dire financial straits again, to be at a point of deciding whether to pay for lights or office supplies, but not both. One money-making plan is to use some of the legacy plus grant money to reprint historical books for resale, with the profits going to a revolving fund.

Meanwhile, a great deal of excitement exists at the Oliver House as the finance committee struggles with the pleasant duty of dealing with the legacy.

"We want to build some kind of security and be more self-sufficient," said Dillon. "This is a happy year. We are just going great and we are so excited.