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=Cathell Family- West Virginia=

Sinclair Ridge and the Sinclair Family

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Some Sinclair Family in West Virginia Genealogy

Information on this early American Sinclair family that follows is from research of Pauline Eaton and Marion Taylor, both of Ohio and Kay Wilson Fisk of Washington state, all descendents. The Sinclair Family, Sinclair Ridge West Virginia was from a line that started with Robert and Nancy (McKenzie) Sinclair, both born 1772 in Inverness Scotland (1). By 1796, the researchers has the family owning considerable land in Hampshire County Virginia, the location listed as Patterson Creek. Information that follows is from my Internet research, from Karla Sinclair Taylor or from oral stories from my father and grandmother. After becoming part of West Virginia in the Civil War, Hampshire County was later divided and Mineral County was formed. When Robert Sinclair died in 1831, evidence indicates that his farm was in the mountainous country around Barnum, West Virgina, perhaps this was where his first farm was located.(2) His widow Nancy later sold the land to a coal company and Hector, a younger son was the owner of the mortgage. According to my father, Hector seemed to be somewhat a leader of the clan. Hector apparently moved to high mountain glade country which would later become Garrett County Maryland where according to his obituary, he was a repected citizen and faithful church member (3). He was listed as a licensed Exhorter, a person who led the congregation in a spiritual gift of challenging, encouraging, comforting and guiding, separate from the sermon. He married Sarah Schooley, the daughter of Mahlon Schooley and Honour Lefaber Schooley. (4) Honour Lefaber Schooley's grave is on Hoop Pole Ridge, near Deep Creek Lake Maryland. Her tombstone states she was the daughter of Corporal Lefaber, bodyguard to General George Washington. Hector and Sarah had several children-- however this author does not have their names except his obituary listed his daughter as Mrs. Jacob Friend. At some point, Hector Sinclair and other Sinclairs moved about 25 miles west to the ridge country of Reno District, Preston County, West Virginia and Sinclair Ridge was named after them. Hector and Sarah are listed in the 1870 at that location. An oddity is that I normally hear the name of people pronounced "Sin clair":, however the ridge is always pronounced "sinkler". They continued with a strong affiliation with the church, donating the land for Mt. Sarah Church, named after Hector's wife. One assumes that the Sinclairs were engaged as farmers as Sinclair Ridge is fairly remote. As indicated in the obituary, some of their family stayed closer to Oakland as Hector is listed as living with his daughter, Mrs. Jacob Friend in the Oakland Republican obituary. Since he had been established at Sinclair Ridge decades earlier, it is assumed that after his wife died, he lived with his children, a common practice. Mrs. Friend's locale was given as Cranberry Glade which might have been over the line in West Virginia, however my father states he was first buried in a graveyard that is now on the DeBerry farm a few miles north of Oakland. At some point, he was disinterred and at dawn (as was the practice in these ceremonies) he was moved by wagon to Sinclair Ridge to be buried with Sarah at Mt. Sarah church. If I interpret Kay Wilson's record correctly, Hector had brothers Daniel (1794), Hugh (1802), Alexander (1804) and Robert (1809). His sisters were Marjah Sinclair King (1802), Jane Sinclair (listed as mentally impaired) and Nancy (1816). Depending on the year of birth, some were born in Scotland, Maryland or Virginia (later West Virginia). In this author's line is Alexander Sinclair who was born around 1847, was a Civil War vet and is listed as a farmer in the Oakland Maryland area in 1880 census with his wife Mary and daughters Sarah and Lilly and sons Joseph and Benonia (age 3 months)(4). Where the Alexander Sinclair's farm was is a matter of speculation however some think they were associated with the grain mill at the new town of Oakland. Alexander Sinclair died in Preston County February 28, 1919 at age 71 years 11 months. His death certificate lists his father as Robt Sinclair and his mother as Nina Titchnel Sinclair. He is buried at Shays Chapel near Newburg. Besides Sinclair Ridge, many of the Sinclair clan located on farms around Newburg, Preston County. A Sinclair often found in records is Arch Sinclair who was a funeral director in Newburg. An annual event was held at Shays Chapel that my family attended because of this connection with the Sinclairs.

From Oakland, Alexander and his family likely moved to Sinclair Ridge, where Benonia (this author's greatgrandfather) was raised. Benonia can be found in the 1910 census married to Caroline Carrico Sinclair (since September 30, 1898) and five children including my grandmother Gladys, living in the town of Rowlesburg.(5) As a thirty year old man, this might have been the time that he was employed by the Morgantown and Kingwood Railroad, train crewmen had to live close to the duty station. Rowlesburg was on one end of this newly built railroad and Morgantown was the other; railroad work often meant moving. The time that the family was living in Sabraton (a Morgantown suburb) probably had good times, my grandmother Gladys spoke about going to Oak Park, the railroad-owned amusement park and the friendliness of neighbors. But records show that 10 month old John Robert Sinclair died of menengitis on September 17, 1913. And, on November 4, 1914, Carrie (Carrico)Sinclair died at age 35 from tuberculosis, leaving a young family. On January 27, 1917 Benonia remarried to Lura Mae Funk at the Methodist Episcopal Church in Rowlesburg. His granddaughter Karla Sinclair Taylor describes their several children below. Lura Mae died in 1961 age 73, Benonia passed away in 1974, in his late 90's. Both are buried at Mt. Israel Methodist Episcopal Church near Fellowsville, West Virginia. In my childhood we visted Benonia several times when he was an elderly man living with his daughter Blondell Cassidy and her family. I recall reading a newspaper article about Benonia walking a good many miles to vote when he was in his 90's.

Help is requested in correcting the above information!

Sinclair Ridge April 2009-use "back" to return here

Alexander Sinclair, 1865-Civil War Veteran-Alexander was a part of the volunteer Union 6th West Virginia Infantry, the outfit that was guarding the strategic B&O Railroad in the Spring of 1863 when the elaborate Jones-Imboden Raid failed in its effort to destroy three strategic bridges at Rowlesburg. Alexander was Benonia Sinclair's father. Photo from Karla Sinclair Taylor

Alexander (1846?-1919) and Mary M. Sinclair (1845?-1922), year of photograph-1898. Mary Michael Sinclair was the daughter of William Michael and Sarah Forsyth Michael. The Michaels were a substantial family, widow Mary M. Sinclair was living with the Reverend A.O. Michael at Meadow-dale, rural Fairmont, Marion County at her death in 1922. Census records and death certificates have slightly different years of birth for both Alexander and Mary- Photo from Karla Sinclair Taylor

Benonia G. Sinclair, age 83, year 1961- This was the year that his second wife Lura Mae Funk Sinclair died, perhaps the reason for this gathering which is presumed to be at Sinclair Ridge. The slide is labeled as 1961 and the Ohio license plate on the Plymouth is 1961- Photo from Carl Mitchell Cathell, scanned by Carl Mitchell Cathell, Jr.

Benonia G. Sinclair, age 91, year 1970- To his left is his daughter, Gladys Emma Sinclair Cathell with her husband Clarence Mitchell Cathell on their 50th anniversary - Photo from Robert Dale Cathell, scanned by Carl Mitchell Cathell, Jr.

Sinclair Ridge

Mt. Sarah Church, Sinclair Ridge, Preston County West Virginia

The Reverends Orville Davis and Bill Pyles, Mt. Sarah Church

Left to right, Beulah Felton, Bill Pyles, Benonia Sinclair, Blondell Sinclair, Eddith De Witt, Richard Jones, Getrude and Wells Snider, Rose Marie Davis Frazee ( holding perhaps son Bob Frazee), Jessie Davis, Lewis and Velma Loughry, Orville Davis, Dottie Snider, Ada Davis Savage, group of girls (tentative) Jane Felton (white collar),Mary Felton (red top), Debbie Felton (red sweater), Linda Loughry (blue suit), Janet Felton (little girl in red sweater). Gwendolyn Davis is perhaps in the background. Thanks to Rose Marie Davis Frazee and son Bob Frazee for identification. Their guess on the date is Spring, 1956, perhaps Easter Sunrise service.

Willis Sinclair, his father Benonia Sinclair and Willis' son Gayle. According to Bob Frazee, Mt. Sarah church was named in honor of Sarah Sinclair, wife of Hector Sinclair. The Sinclairs donated the ground for the church. The headstone in the photo is Sarah Sinclair's.

Sinclair Ridge-the family of Scottish descent would feel at home here.


One room school house immediately below Mt. Sarah Church

Karla Sinclair Taylor (daughter of Loraine Carlous Sinclair ) of Ohio writes about the photos above: "The first picture of the church looks familiar to me as a child when my father took us kids there to visit his homeplace where he grew up as a child.

The third photo is our grandpa Benonia with the hat on. The third person standing on the left side. The fourth photo is grandpa standing in the middle.

The fifth picture looks like the old homeplace called Sinclair Ridge where my father grew up as a child(?). Everyone called my Dad Rain. His real name was Loraine. His middle name was Carlous.He always went by Carlous as his name.

I wish Dad was alive today, he could tell you the name of the church.

Dad visited his homeplace 2 yrs. ago before he passed away and stopped by to visit his cousin and former teacher Bob Funk.

He always spoke of a Jessie Davis he knew growing up. I do remember Grandma Laura Funk having a old green pipe organ inside the house.

I bet if you would get ahold of Blaine or Geraldine they could identify the name of the Church.

It is amazing how times has changed and I always enjoyed listening to Dad's stories about his childhood!

Karla adds: "Blondale passed away a few years ago. Her Husbands name is John Cassidy and her son Johnny is living near the old home place.

My father passed away 2 yrs ago and went back to visit the old home place where he lived and deer hunted that year. Dad had the most fondest memories of his childhood growing up on Sinclair Ridge. Last week his brother passed away, his name was Bernard Sinclair.

He has a brother named Blaine Sinclair that is living and lives in Parsons, WV and a sister named Geraldine Smith that is living in Kenova, WV.

He had a old picture of our grandparents and a picture of an Uncle named Joe who was in the civil war, I beleive?

He always talked about the depression growing up. I never met your (great-) Uncles ? Willis, Arthur, Albert, and grandmother Gladys..

I think Dad said Arthur passed away a few yrs ago and remembers Arthur leaving home and joining the air force. I know there was alot of family history. The only 2 siblings still living now (October 2008) are Blaine and Geraldine.

You have numerous cousins that live here in Ohio. Benonia had a son named Maynard who passed away as a infant. My Father named one of his sons Maynard after him and is retired now from the marine corp and resides in North Carolina.

He had recalled your Grandmother Gladys liked to cook and always had family get togethers. I know they were related to a Davis around that area.

I think Dad had another brother they called Hershell Cline, I think he was a half brother on his mothers side.

from email written October, 2008

Photos from Karla Sinclair Taylor

Benonia Sinclair, his son L. Carlous "Rain" Sinclair and wife Ardith Sinclair and Benonia's daughter Reland Blondell Sinclair Cassidy

Loraine Carlous Sinclair, age 17- U.S. Army photo 1943

Obituary for Loraine Carlous Sinclair

Sinclair Home on Sinclair Ridge

From Karla Sinclair Taylor--"I don't know how old the photo is. I can find out from my Mother. Nobody lives in the house. When Dad was living he would always go down there and stay the night in the house. The house isn't in good shape. Blondale's son Johnny lives nearby on the property. I believe they used a old wood stove inside to heat? I know Dad stayed in that house right before he passed away in 2006 and went deer hunting and visited with Johnny. The house, if I remember correctly as a child, had 2 bedrooms upstairs and perhaps 2 rooms downstairs. I was young at the time when I visited and remember it vividly. I must of been about 10 or 11 yrs. old at the time. I remember Dad picking Grandpa Benonia up at Blondale's and driving him out to the old house for him to visit. Grandpa was quite up there in age at the time. I think Grandpa Benonia was in his late 90's when he passed away.(Editor's note-Benonia G. Sinclair lived from around 1880 to 1974). Dad went down to his funeral. I didn't go because we were still in school.
I would like to visit there again someday. I need to get in touch with Johnny since I don't know the area well there. As far as I know the house is still standing. Blondales husband John Cassidy is still living (October 2008).
Dad use to tell us kids how bad copperhead snakes was there when he was living at home and his mother Mae would pour boiling water on top of the snakes on the porch.

Funeral Notice for Blondell Sinclair

Shays Chapel

Shays Chapel, Newburg WV- Sinclair get together

Mt. Sarah Church?

Shays Chapel, Newburg WV or Mt. Sarah Churh - Sinclair get together?


Albert and Vespa Sinclair

Albert Carrico Sinclair, son of Benonia G. Sinclair and Carrie Carrico Sinclair--1970. Inset is his wife Vespa White Sinclair. Photos from Carl Mitchell Cathell Sr. and Robert Dale Cathell at the 50th wedding anniversary of Clarence and Gladys Sinclair Cathell-1970. Scanned by Carl M. Cathell, Jr.

Obituaries of Vespa Sinclair

Vespa Sinclair

Vespa Sinclair, 90, a resident of the White Ridge community, Saint George, and more recently a resident of the Broaddus Long Term Care at Philippi, departed this life early this morning, Jan. 27, 2003, at the care center. Funeral arrangements are incomplete and under the direction of Barb & Greenlief Funeral Home for Vespa Sinclair. From 27 Jan 2003,

Vespa M. Sinclair

Vespa Mae White Sinclair, 90, a resident of the White Ridge community, Limestone, St. George, and more recently, a resident of the Broaddus Long Term Care in Philippi, departed this life early Monday morning, Jan. 27, 2003, at the care center. Death was attributed to complications associated with Alzheimer’s disease. She was born April 11, 1912, at Oakland, Md., a daughter of the late William Page White and Idella Edna Michaels White. On April 17, 1934, at Oakland, Md., she was united in marriage to Albert Carrico Sinclair (son of Benonia G. and Carrie Carrico Sinclair), who preceded her in death on Nov. 23, 1997. The had celebrated 68 years of marriage. Surviving are three sons, Eldon Milton Sinclair of Manhattan, N.Y., Denzil Warren “Denny” Sinclair, Limestone, and James Quinten “Jimmy” Sinclair and wife, Adie Maxine, of Warrenton, Va.; five daughters, Edna Ellen Keller and husband, Denzil, Location Road, St. George, Alberta “Kay” Watring and husband, William, Ocoee, Fla., Dorothy Mae Sinclair, Limestone, St. George, Norma Jean Perriero and husband, Robert, Hambleton, N.J., and Nancy Lea Lipscomb and husband, Ernest, Limestone, St. George; 23 grandchildren, 47 great-grandchildren and six great-great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by one son, Derrill Rodney Sinclair; one granddaughter, Debbie Sinclair; and one foster sister, Alberta Sanders. She was home-schooled by her mother who was a teacher. She attended the Mount Carmel Methodist Church at White Ridge for many years. She was a member of the former Limestone Farm Women’s Club. She was an avid gardener, had a great love for music and was a noted cook. The family will receive friends at Barb & Greenlief Funeral Home Friday from 6 p.m. until 9 p.m. Final rites will be conducted at the funeral home parlor Saturday at 11 a.m. Pastor Pat Cassidy will officiate and interment will follow at Mount Carmel Cemetery at White Ridge. The Barb & Greenlief Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements for Vespa Mae White Sinclair. From 28 and 29 Jan 2003.

Vespa M. Sinclair

The family will receive friends at Barb & Greenlief Funeral Home Friday from 6 p.m. until 9 p.m. Final rites will be conducted at the funeral home parlor Saturday at 11 a.m. Pastor Pat Cassidy will officiate and interment will follow at Mount Carmel Cemetery at White Ridge. The Barb & Greenlief Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements for Vespa Mae White Sinclair. Elkins Inter MountainFrom 30 and 31 Jan 2003.

Obituary of Kathleen Wilson

Kathleen Wilson, 78, of Albright (Preston Co, WV), died Thursday, February 27, 1997 in Kingwood (Preston Co., WV). She was born May 7, 1918, in Rowlesburg (Preston Co, WV), a daughter of the late B.G (Benonia) and Mae Funk Sinclair (Benonia's second wife).

She was a member of the Wesley Chapel Church and a homemaker.

She is survived by two sons, Marvin Wilson and Ralph Wilson, both of Albright; one daughter, Shirley Shaffer of Masontown (Preston Co., WV); four brothers, Harvey Sinclair in Texas, Blain Sinclair of St. George (Tucker Co., WV), Lorain and Bernard Sinclair, both of Mansfield, OH; two sisters, Geraldine Smith of Huntington (WV) and Blondel Cassidy of St. George; six grandchildren and three great-grandchildren; two half-brothers, Albert Sinclair (son of Benonia and his first wife,Caroline Carrico Sinclair ) of St. George, and Arthur Sinclair (son of Benonia and Caroline Sinclair ) in VA; two sisters in law, Zella Fedrick of Gladesville (Preston Co., WV), and Grace Ining of Topock, AZ.

She was preced in death by her husband, Russell Wilson; one brother; one grandson; one great-granddaughter; one half-brother (Willis Sinclair, son of Benonia and Caroline Sinclair) and one half-sister(Gladys Sinclair Cathell, daughter of Benonia and Caroline Sinclair).

Service was held Sunday, March 2, at Browning Funeral Home, with Rev. Fredric McAllister officiating. Interment was in Maplewood Cemetery.

Preston County Journal, March 7, 1997

Obituary of Bernard V. Sinclair Sr.

PERRYSVILLE- Bernard V. Sinclair, Sr., 79, of Perrysville, died Tuesday, September 30, 2008, at the home of his son, Bernie, whom he made his home with since 2005. Born October 4, 1928, in Rowlesburg, West Virginia, he was the son of Benonia and Laura Mae (Funk) Sinclair. He was a veteran of the United States Army serving during the Korean War. Mr. Sinclair retired from Purdy Construction after 23 years of service. He attended the Dean Road Freewill Baptist Church and was an avid outdoorsman, enjoying hunting and fishing. He loved sporting events, espeially watching the Cleveland and Cincinnati teams. Surviving are two sons, Bernie Sinclair, Jr. of Perrysville and Michael Sinclair of Lewisburg, WV; three daughters, Janet (Junior) Worthington of Orrville, Joann Minamyer of Boyertown, PA and Vickie (Richard) Rafidi of Hilldale, MI; 14 grandchildren, Sarah, Dan, Jeremiah, Jennifer, Jonathan, Brandon, Kristi, Missy, Jimmy, Jeffrey, Michael, Michelle, David and Cody; numerous great grandchildren; a brother, Blaine Sinclair of Parsons, WV; a sister, Geraldine Smith of Kanova, WV; numerous nieces and nephews; and his dog, Duke. He was preceded in death by his wife, Thelma Sinclair in 2002; his parents; and 12 brothers and sisters. Friends may call from 2-4 and 6-8 p.m. Friday, October 3, 2008, at the Ontario Home of Wappner Funeral Directors, 100 S. Lexington-Springmill Rd, Mansfield, OH 44906. Funeral services will be held 10:00 a.m. Saturday, October 4, 2008, at the funeral home conducted by Chaplain Skip Snell. Burial will follow in Mansfield Memorial Park where full military services will be conducted by the Richland County Joint Veterans Burial Detail. Memorial contributions may be made to Hospice of North Central Ohio. Online guest registry at

Manfield (OH) NewsJournal, October 2, 2008

(1) A Genealogy of the Sinclair Ridge WV Sinclair Family byPauline Eaton and Marion Taylor, both of OH and report by Kay Wilson, Washington State

1770-1772 Robert Sinclair b. in Inverness, Scotland

*Descendants of Robert Sinclair

1 Robert SINCLAIR b 1: Bet. 1770 - 1772 Inverness, Scotland b 2: Bet. 1776 - 1780 Inverness, Scotland d: 14 Feb 1831 Hampshire Co., VA (now WV)

.+Nancy MCKENZIEb: Abt. 1772 Inverness, Scotland

.....2 Marjarh King SINCLAIRb 1: Bef. 1794 Scotland b 2: Abt. 1802 VA

.........+Wesley KING m: 16 Nov 1820 Hampshire Co., VA (now WV)

.....2 Daniel R. ST.CLAIR b: Abt. 1794 Inverness, Scotland d: 28 Feb 1854 Carroll Twp., Ottowa Co., OH

.........+Sarah KING b 1: Abt. 1804 VA / WV b 2: Bet. 1796 - 1797 Virginia b 3: Bet. 1796 - 1804 VA / WV b 4: Nov 1800 unknown b 5: 1804 VAm: Va. d: 09 Aug 1886 LaMoille Twp, Bureau Co., ILBurial: 11 Aug 1886 Van Orin Cem., LaMoille Twp, Bureau Co. IL .....2 Hugh SINCLAIR b 1: Abt. 1804 Maryland b 2: Abt. 1803 Inverness, Scotland

.........+SARAH b: 1808 VA

.....2 Alexander SINCLAIR b 1: 1804 MD b 2: 1802

.........+JEMIMA b: 1802 MD

.....2 [1] Robert SINCLAIR b 1: 12 Dec 1809 Hampshire Co., VA b 2: Bet. 1810 - 1811 VAd: Sep 1890

.........+MINERVA b: 1818 MD d: Preston Co., WV

.....*2nd Wife of [1] Robert SINCLAIR:

.........+Jane SIDWELL

.....2 Hector SINCLAIRb: 16 May 1812 VA d: 02 Sep 1896 Preston Co., WV

.........+Sarah SCHOOLEYb: 15 Feb 1815 OH d: 20 Mar 1889 Preston Co., WV

Burial: Abt. 1889 Mount Sarah Cemetery, Preston Co. WV

.....2 Jane SINCLAIR b: 1814 VA

.....2 Nancy SINCLAIRb: 16 Jun 1816 Hampshire, VA d: 25 Apr 1894 Preston Co., WVBurial: Mount Sarah Cemetery, Preston Co. WV

.........+Joseph Washington DAVIS b: 21 Oct 1810 VA m: Bet. 1832 - 1833 Bloomington or Tappahannock, VA d: 04 Apr 1889 Preston Co., WV Burial: Mount Sarah Cemetery, Preston Co. WV

Kay Wilson

(1776-1780 Robert Sinclair b. in Inverness, Scotland) *

Abt 1772 - Nancy McKenzie (wife) b. in Inverness, Scotland

Bef 1794 - Marjarh King Sinclair b. in Scotland **

Abt 1794 - Daniel Sinclair b. in Inverness, Scotland

1796 - Robert purchased 438 ac on Patterson Creek, Hampshire Co., VA

(Abt 1802 - Marjory/Marjorh Sinclair b. in VA) ** (Abt 1803 - Hugh Sinclair b. in Inverness, Scotland) ***

Abt 1804 - Hugh Sinclair b. in MD ***

(1802 - Alex Sinclair b. in ?) ****

1804 - Alexander Sinclair b. in MD ****

1809 - Robert Sinclair b. in Hampshire Co., VA

1812 - Hector Sinclair b. in VA

1814 - Jane Sinclair b. in VA

1816 - Nancy Sinclair b. in VA

(3) Obituary of Hector Sinclair

Hector Sinclair died at the home of his daughter Mrs. Jacob Friend, near Cranberry Glade, on the 2d of September (1896). He was born May 16, 1812, making him over 84 years old. He was a member of the Methodist Episcopal church sixty-eight years. He married a Miss Schooley, sister to Wm. Schooley, who died several years ago. Brother Sinclair was a licensed exhorter in the church for many years and did heroic service in that capacity in the days when an exhortation after the sermon was the rule and when conversations were common in the ordinary service. Many friends and relatives mourn the loss of the good man. He was not an educated man in the modem idea of education, but was mighty in the Scriptures and full of faith and the Holy Ghost. Brother Sinclair did not carve his achievements on the arches and pyramids of time, but made the world the better by his having lived in it. Powerful in prayer, uncompromising in his allegiance to his Sovereign, he lived, believed, sang, prayed and labored for the good of others. Long live the memory of good old Father Sinclair. An hour before he died he sang, "Jesus lover of my soul,: and said, "let us pray." Most of his last moments were moments of prayer. Brother Sinclair's live and death was a grand illustration of the truth of the Scripture: "The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord."
The (Oakland MD) Republican, Sept. 1896

(4) Mahlon and Honour Lefaber Schooley from Kenneth Curcio

In researching the internet I came across your website, "The Cathell Family of West Virginia". As a result I believe we are distantly related. I trace my Mother's side of the family back to Mahlon Schooley and Honour Lefaber. If my addition is correct they would be one of my Grant Grand Parents 5 times removed. I have been lucky enough to trace the Schooley family back to the mid 1500's in England. This info can be easily accessed by Googling ," A Pioneer Schooley Family."

I have been attempting to gain information as the Henry Lefaber and Honour Lefaber. Not much is known about them. I have been told by my Mother, that her Great Grand Father, James Franklin Williamson, that he was 1/16 American Indian. Again if my math is correct, it would bring it back to Henry and Honor's generation. Lefaber is a French name, and the French were known at the time to marry American Indians. I hope you might have some additional information that might help in my search.

I did read on your web site about the inscription on Honour Lefaber Schooley's grave stone. I have checked several resources pertaining to Henry Lefaber serving in the Revolutionary Army or as a Body Guard for George Washington. So far, I found no records to back this up, but I'll keep searching.

As far as the Schooley family, it is listed as one of the first and founding families of New Jersey. There is a State Park and mountain named for them. I now live and work in New Jersey and just last week went to Moorestown. It's a pretty up scale community in Burlington County in the southern part of the State. There I saw Schooley Avenue and it brought a smile to my face. There are quite a few books and web sites where info. can be found about the family and it's history. They were originally Quakers that came to the Delaware Valley. Robert Schooley Sr. came to America in 1678 aboard the Shield. The voyage took 16 weeks. At the time he arrived there were other family members already here. Robert Sr. was Mahlon Schooley's Great, Great Grandfather.

Thank you very much for the photo of Sarah's tombstone. If I find any additional information about any of these ancestors, I'll forward it to you.

I would greatly appreciate any information that you might have about Henry and Honor and the Lefaber family.

Ken Curcio

Article on Honour Lefaber Schooley, mother of Sarah Schooley Sinclair, wife of Hector Sinclair

(4)1880 U.S. Census-Oakland, Garrett County, Maryland
Name Relation Yr Birth Age Parents Born Occupation
Alex Sinclair Father 1846 34 Va Farmer
Mary Mother 1847 33 Va ..
Lilly Dau. 1869 11 WV? ..
Sarah Dau. 1871 11 WV? ..
Joseph Son 1876 4 WV or MD? ..
Benonia Son 1880 8m MD? ..
Although listed as a farmer, this family possibly was involved or owned the grain mill on Water Street in Oakland and is related to some old time Oakland families including the Rasches and Kimmels.

Joseph Sinclair, born 1876-Killed in the Spanish American War- Photo from Karla Sinclair Taylor

(5)1910 U.S. Census-Rowlesburg, Preston County, West Virginia

Name Relation Yr Birth Age Parents Born Occupation
Benonia Sinclair Father 1880 30 Md ..
Carrie (Caroline Carrico) Mother 1879 31 W.Va ..
Margaret Dau. 1900 10 W.Va ..
Gladys Dau. 1902 8 W.Va ..
Willis Son 1904 6 W.Va ..
Arthur Son 1902 8 W.Va ..
Albert Son 1907 3 W.Va ..

Alexander Sinclair, Benonia Sinclair's father.

Mary Michael Sinclair, Benonia Sinclair's mother.

Alexander Sinclair's Civil War pension record.


October Term, 1876

APPEAL from the Circuit Court of the United States for the District of West Virginia.

In April, 1831, Robert Sinclair, of Hampshire County, Va., died, leaving a widow and eight surviving children. He was, at the time of his death, possessed of some personal property, and the real property in controversy, consisting of one hundred and ten acres. By his last will and testament he made the following devise: 'I give and bequeath to my beloved wife, Nancy Sinclair, all my estate, both real and personal; that is to say, all my lands, cattle, horses, sheep, farming utensils, household and kitchen furniture, with every thing that I possess, to have and to hold during her life, and to do with as she sees proper before her death.' The will was duly probated in the proper county.

In July, 1839, the widow, for the consideration of $1,100, executed a deed to the Union Potomac Company, a corporation created under the laws of Virginia, of the real property thus devised to her, describing it as the tract or parcel on which she then resided, and the same which was conveyed to her 'by the last will and testament of her late husband.' As security for the payment of the consideration, she took at the time from the company its bond and a mortgage upon the property. The mortgage described the property as the tract of land which had on that day been conveyed by her to the Union Potomac Company.

In 1854 this bond and mortgage were assigned to the complainant and Hector Sinclair, the latter a son of the widow, in consideration of $100 cash, and the yearly payment of the like sum during her life. Previous to this time, Brant and Hector Sinclair had purchased the interest of all the other heirs, except Jane Sinclair, who was at the time, and still is, an idiot, or an insane person; and such purchase is recited in the assignment, as is also the previous conveyance of a life-interest to the company.

In July, 1857, these parties instituted suit for the foreclosure of the mortgage and sale of the property. The bill described the property as a tract of valuable coal land which the company had purchased of the widow, and prayed for the sale of the estate purchased. Copies of the deed of the widow and of the mortgage of the company were annexed to the bill. In due course of proceedings a decree was obtained directing a sale, by commissioners appointed for that purpose, of the property, describing it as 'the lands in the bill and proceedings mentioned,' if certain payments were not made within a designated period. The payments not being made, the commissioners, in December, 1858, sold the mortgaged property to one Patrick Hammill, who thus succeeded to all the rights of the Union Potomac Company.

The defendant corporation, the Virginia Coal and Iron Company, derive their title and interest in the premises by sundry mesne conveyances from Hammill, and in 1867 went into their possession. Since then it has cut down a large amount of valuable timber, and has engaged in mining and extracting coal from the land, and disposing of it.

Brant, having acquired the interest of Hector Sinclair, brought the present suit to restrain the company from mining and extracting coal from the land, and to compel an accounting for the timber cut and the coal taken and converted to its use.

The court below dismissed the bill, whereupon Brant brought the case here.

Argued by Mr. John J. McKinnon and Mr. George W. Brandt for the appellant.

Under the will, Nancy Sinclair took only a life-estate. The testator having failed to devise the fee, it descended to his heirs. She had no power, nor did she attempt to divest them of it.

Real and personal property of an intestate is, under the statute of Virginia, distributed equally among his heirs-at-law. The rule is the same where the owner in fee of lands devises them to another for life, without making any specific disposition of the inheritance.

A rule never to be lost sight of in the construction of wills is, that the heir is not to be disinherited without an express devise, or implication importing so strong a probability, that an intention to the contrary cannot be supposed. 1 Redf. on Wills, p. 425, n. 5, p. 434, sect. 18; Allen's Ex'r v. Allen, 18 How. 391.

Negative words are not sufficient to exclude the title of the heir. There must be an actual gift to some other definite object. Fitch v. Weber, 6 Hare, 145; 1 Redf. on Wills, 425.

Courts will look at the circumstances under which the devisor makes his will, as to the state of his property, his family, and the like. 1 Redf. on Wills, 425.

In a deed, the words govern the intention. In a will, the intention governs the words. Edwards v. Bibb, 43 Ala. 666.

It is an old and equitable rule, that the reversion is not to be defeated, or the heirs despoiled by implication, without express words. Dashwood v. Peyton, 18 Ves. 40.

No words authorizing Mr. Sinclair to sell and convey the fee can be found in the will, either in connection with the life-estate or elsewhere. The leading case of Bradley v. Westcott, 13 Ves. 445, is strikingly analogous to that at bar. In both there is an express devise for life, followed by an ambiguous authority or discretion; and in each the authority or power is confined to natural life.

Applying the doctrine in that case to this, it cannot be contended that the still less potent and greatly more ambiguous language following the express devise for life in this case is to have a different meaning or be differently construed. Smith v. Bell, 6 Pet. 80, Gregory v. Cowgill, 19 Mo. 415, Boyd et al. v. Strahan, 36 Ill. 355, Seigwald v. Seigwald, 37 id. 431, and Cox et al. v. Butt et al., 22 Ark. 568, are to the same effect as Bradley v. Westcott, supra, and settle the question as to what estate Mrs. Sinclair took, and what power she had under the will.

The complainant is in no manner or way estopped by reason of the foreclosure proceeding or by the sale thereunder. To estop him in any view of the case, the defence must show that his language or conduct was the direct motive or inducement to the purchase. This has not even been attempted. Ware v. Cowles, 24 Ala. 446; Jones v. Cowles, 26 id. 612; Brewer v. Brewer, 19 id. 431; Morton v. Hodgdon, 32 Me. 327; Cambridge Inst. v. Rittlefield, 6 Cush. 216; Watkins v. Peck, 13 N. H. 360; Darlington's Appeal, 1 Harris, 430; Carpenter v. Stilwell, 1 Kern. 61.

Ignorance of the true state of the title on the part of the purchaser must concur with wilful misrepresentation or fraudulent concealment on the part of the vendor. Crest v. Jack, 3 Watts, 238; Hepburn v. McDowell, 17 Serg. & R. (Pa.) 383; Ferris v. Coover, 10 Cal. 509; Casey v. Inloes, 1 Gilm. 430; Lawrence v. Brown, 1 Seld. 394; Hill v. Epley, 7 Casey, 331; Goodson v. Beacham, 24 Ga. 150; Parker v. Parker, 2 Met. 421.

No estoppel will arise in the absence of actual fraud, unless the purchaser was not only ignorant of the true state of the title, but had no means of acquiring knowledge by a recourse to the record. Bigelow v. Topliff, 25 Vt. 273; Carter v. Champion, 8 Conn. 554.

Argued by Mr. E. Wyatt Blanchard for the appellee.

Notwithstanding the assumed defect in Mrs. Sinclair's original title under the will, the appellant is entitled to no relief, and is estopped from denying the validity of the appellee's title: first, as privy in estate of Mrs. Sinclair, under whom he claimed in the foreclosure proceedings; second, by his own declarations of record in those proceedings, his non-assertion at that time of the title he now claims, and by various acts in connection with the foreclosure sale, and subsequently thereto.

It is not necessary to the application of the doctrine of estoppel that fraud in fact should be charged or shown. It rests on a broad principle of equity, which will not permit a party to a transaction, even when made under a mistake of title, to receive its fruits, and afterwards repudiate it. Assertions innocently made, but which mislead others; silence as to conflicting claims, or as to facts which should have been disclosed; recitals in deeds; descriptions of title; covenants; warranties,—all or any will give rise to the application of this principle for the protection of a purchaser, in the class of cases known as cases of constructive fraud.

It is a principle of universal application, that a person assenting to an act, and deriving and enjoying a title under it, shall not be permitted to impeach it. 2 Wash. Real. Prop. b. 3, p. 472; 11 How. 322, 325, 326; 5 Johns. Ch. 184; 1 id. 354; 12 Wall. 358; 13 id. 291.

Nor can any controlling authority be found for applying the rule caveat emptor to this class of cases.

The evidence is uncontradicted, that the sum agreed to be paid to Mrs. Sinclair was at the time the full value of the property in fee-simple, subject to the life-estate reserved by her. Whatever, therefore, she conveyed was to be paid for as a fee-simple estate. Her acceptance of the mortgage in fee, to secure the payment of the purchase-money, was a distinct act in pais, recognizing the existence of a title in fee in the Union Potomac Company.

In the application of the doctrine of estoppel, the question whether the acts done by the parties are legally effectual is excluded. The sole question is, What did they intend to do? In this case, the conclusion is irresistible, that Mrs. Sinclair intended to part with the fee for a then fair price. Her opinions, purposes, or unknown views must yield to the force of her solemn acts; and for the protection of others against her and her privies in estate, if the purchaser believed himself acquiring a fee as against her and them, his estate is a fee. Although it is not intended to charge that the complainant in this and in the foreclosure case committed the fraud of conducting that proceeding with his present opinion of his title, or with the purpose of selling the lands, receiving the proceeds, and then reclaiming them, the effect is the same as if he had acted with such guilty purpose. Every line of the record of that proceeding shows that the officers of the court did not sell the life-estate of Mrs. Sinclair, but that they did offer 'the lands mentioned in the proceedings,' with that life-estate reserved, in such explicit terms, that no successful bidder could fail to conclude that he was the purchaser of the fee.

The power of disposition of Mrs. Sinclair, under the will of her husband, equally affects all descriptions of the property devised. Nothing is to be found in the will to indicate any purpose on his part to distinguish her dominion over his real and personal estate.

The construction claimed by the appellant requires that the words of power shall be held to refer to the words creating the estate, so as to read, 'to have and to hold during life, and to do with as she sees proper, according to the powers of a life-tenant.' When the testator gave all to his wife, to have and to hold during her life, he, without superadded words, gave every power incident to that estate. The appellant, in effect, rejects the words of power, and treats them as surplusage.

That construction rests on the presumed intention of the testator to die intestate as to the remainder of his effects, real and personal, in order that they might pass to his heirs-at-law subject to the life-estate devised to his wife; but such intention is not to be presumed if any other construction be possible, especially where a devise like this is of the testator's entire estate. 2 Preston on Estates, 103. Where the devise is general, with words added implying a power of disposition, the devisee takes a fee.

Where an express estate for life is given with such words of power added, the devisee takes an estate for life, and the power must be exercised. 2 Preston on Estates, 81, 82; Cruise, tit. Devise, c. 13, sect. 5; Jackson v. Robins, 16 Johns. 537; Stevens v. Winship, 1 Pick. 318; Reid v. Shergold, 10 Ves. 370; Guthrie v. Guthrie, 1 Call, 7; Shermer v. Shermer's Ex'r, 1 Wash. 266; Burwell v. Anderson, 3 Leigh, 355; 2 Johns. 392; May v. Joynes, 20 Gratt. 692. The power is a distinct gift, and is not limited to a disposition of the life-interest, but will pass the fee. 3 Lomax, Dig. 317; 2 Preston, 81, 82; 8 Viner's Abr. 234, 235, sects. 2, 3, 4, 9, 8, 14. Nor is any special form of words necessary to give the power of disposition of the fee to the life-tenant.

The current of authority is unbroken, that words of power following a gift for life, and uncontrolled by other parts of the will, give either a fee, or a life-estate with power to dispose of the fee. Mrs. Sinclair's deed, therefore, either conveyed, and was meant to convey, nothing, or was intended to operate according to the legal effect of its words

upon the reversion. MR. JUSTICE FIELD stated the case, and delivered the opinion of the court.


Other Church Scenes

Location______________? Left to right Stellie Cline, Gladys Emma Sinclair Cathell, Clarence Mitchell Cathell, Dorothy Bernard Cathell, Willie Cline, Carl Mitchell Cathell, Jr., David Wayne Cathell. Willie and Clarence were first cousins through their Robinson mothers so perhaps this church is in the Licking district of Tucker County.



Use this link to go to the Cathell Family in West Virginia Home Page

Green Valley, West Virginia
August 4, 2007

Green Valley, near Etam West Virginia. Platt Mitchell Cathell homestead. Currently owned and occupied by Gerald "Pete" Cathell, grandson of Platt M. Cathell

1907 Map of Etam West Virginia. The Cathell homestead is just off of this map to the southwest.

Platt and Sarah, as well as many of their offspring are buried in the Etam Methodist Church cemetary.

Children of Platt and Sarah Cathell-use "back" to return to this page from links
Name: Cathell, George E. Year of Birth 1865 Year of Death: 1932 Birth Place: Baltimore MD
Spouse: Sarah E. Robinson Spouse Birth/Death:1867-1954 Burial:Etam Cemetary Child: Roy Cathell 1900-1901
Child: Clarence M. Cathell 1890-1983 Child: Bertha I. Cathell Britton1891-1973 Child: James A. Cathell 1895-1964 Child: Nora A. Cathell 1893-1983
Residence: Green Valley WV County: Preston Occupation: Farmer Notes:

Name: Cathell, Joseph Huvington Year of Birth 1868 Year of Death: 1964 Birth Place: Baltimore MD
Spouse: Callie V. Adams Spouse Birth/Death:1884-1960 Burial:Etam Cemetary Child: Perl A. Cathell
Child: Edith J. Cathell Child: Dora M Cathell Child:Earl C. Cathell Child: William E. Cathell
Child: Elsie E. Cathell Child: Dorothy C. Cathell Child:T.Gordon Cathell Child: W. Donald Cathell
Residence: Etam WV County: Preston Occupation: Farmer Notes: 95 years old at death

Name: Cathell, James Mitchell Year of Birth 1860 Year of Death: 1941 Birth Place: Baltimore MD
Spouse:1) Carrie Coburn 2) Annie Turner Spouse Birth/Death:__________ Burial:Etam Cemetary Child:Virgil Cathell
Child: Claude Cathell Child: Child: Child:
Residence: Belington WV County: Barbour Occupation: Notes:Died in Rowlesburg at Will's

Name: Cathell, Steward H. Year of Birth 1870 Year of Death: 1953 Birth Place: Baltimore
Spouse: Cyrena May Lipscomb Spouse Birth/Death:1871-1952 Burial:Etam Cemetary Child: Thomas Oscar Cathell
Child: Anna L. Cathell Child: Harry Ervin Cathell Child: Lula Mabel Cathell Child: Elmer Neal Cathell
Child: Orville Ross Cathell Child: Theodore Platt Cathell Child: Boyd Williard Cathell Child: Stewart Lee Cathell (loved cake)
Child: Goldie Grace Cathell Child: Everett McKinley Cathell Child: Mary Katherine Cathell Child: Kenneth Hall Cathell
Child: Arthur U. Cathell Child: Avril Cathell Child: Robert W. Cathell Child:Ruth M. Cathell
Residence: Hepzibah Community County: Taylor Occupation:Farmer Notes:

Name: Cathell, William Luther Year of Birth 1878 Year of Death: 1956 Birth Place: Green Valley -Etam, WV
Spouse: Elsie M. Spouse Birth/Death:1883-1959 Burial:Etam Cemetary Child:Merrill (Myrl)Cathell
Child: Charles (Charley) Cathell Child: Child: Child:
Residence: Rowlesburg WV County: Preston Occupation: Engineer, B&O Notes: Pension card in Rowlesburg book

Name: Cathell, Charles (Charley) Year of Birth 1880 Year of Death: 1952 Birth Place: Green Valley -Etam, WV
Spouse: Mable (Mae)Gaines Spouse Birth/Death:1887-196_ Burial:Etam Cemetary Child:Betty (Cathell) Sohn
Child: Dolly M (Cathell) Bolyard Dutton 1914-2002 Child: Gerald (Pete) Cathell, Green Valley, WV Child: Richard (Rich) Cathell, Chesapeake, VA Child: Violet (Cathell) Carver
Child: Augusta Cathell Child: Mildred M. Cathell Child: C. Harold Cathell Child:
Residence: Green Valley, WV County: Preston Occupation:Farmer Notes: bought homeplace from siblings

Name: Cathell, Jane Year of Birth 18__ Year of Death: 19__ Birth Place: Baltimore MD
Spouse: Thomas Springs Spouse Birth/Death:_______ Burial:_______ Child:
Child: Child: Child: Child:
Residence: County: Taylor Occupation: Notes:

Name: Cathell, John Wesley Year of Birth June 22, 1872 Year of Death: August 25, 1951 Birth Place: Baltimore, MD
Spouse: Jane Haymon or Layman Spouse Birth/Death:_______ Burial:Concord Church Child: Callie Cathell Corley
Child: Johnnie Cathell Child: Ralph William Cathell Child: Daisy Cathell Child:Howard Cathell
Child: Mitchell Cathell (of John, not of Clarence) Child: Carrie V. Cathell Child: Inez D. Cathell Child:Myrtle E. Cathell
Child: Bretsel L. Cathell Child: Bud Cathell Child: Clifford B. Cathell Child:Blanch Cathell
Child: Dolly P.Cathell Child: Child: Sarah E.Cathell Child: Nellie R. Cathell
Residence: rural Belington WV County:Barbour Occupation: Farmer Notes:

Name: Cathell, Jonathan Year of Birth abt 1873 Year of Death: ? Birth Place: Baltimore MD
Spouse: _____ Spouse Birth/Death:_______ Burial:? Child:
Child: Child: Child: Child:
Residence: County: Occupation: Notes: Jonathan might be John Wesley-above?

Name: Cathell, Martha W Year of Birth abt 1876 Year of Death: ? Birth Place: _________
Spouse: _____ Spouse Birth/Death:_______ Burial:? Child:
Child: Child: Child: Child:
Residence: County: Occupation: Notes:

Name: Cathell, Rutherford B. Year of Birth abt 1876 Year of Death: ? Birth Place: West Virginia
Spouse: Grace E. Francis Cathell Spouse Birth/Death:12/25/1879/? Burial:? Child:
Child: Child: Child: Child:
Residence: Harrison Co. WV County: Occupation: Notes: Married Grace 1899

Notes-Need to classify/verify

1900 Census
Preston County
listed under Stuart (Steward) and May
Arthur U Cathell abt 1899

listed under William L
Charity Cathell abt 1882

listed under Jos. H.
Eunice E Cathelll abt 1872
Perl A. Cathell abt 1890
Edith J. Cathell abt 1892
Dora M Cathell 1894
Earl C. Cathell abt 1897

1910 Census
Preston County
listed under William and Elsie
Merrill Cathell abt 1905
Charley Cathell abt 1908

listed under George E. and Sarah
Florence M. Cathell abt 1890

listed under Charles and Mabel (Charley and May)
Augusta Cathell abt 1907 (Gusty, a visitor to my home in the 1960's ?)

listed under James M.
Virgil Cathell abt 1901

listed under Stewart H. and (Cyrena) May
Arvel Cathell abt 1900 (seen elsewhere spelled Avril ?-if Avril, died Sept 20 1964 Mineral Co WV- retired B&O RR)

listed under John and Jane-Upshur County--assumed to be the same as John Wesley
Daisy Cathell abt 1895
Howard Cathell abt 1904
Mitchell Cathell abt 1904 - spouse was Mary Russie Malcomb-died March 1953

1920 Census
Preston County

listed under John and Jane
Carrie V. Cathell abt 1909
Inez D. Cathell abt 1914
Myrtle E. Cathell abt 1915
Bretsel L. Cathell abt 1916
Bud Cathell abt 1916

(listed in 1930 census--Barbour Co- Under John and Jane)
Blanch Cathell abt 1913
Clifford B. Cathell abt 1918
Dolly P. Cathell abt 1920
Sarah E. Cathell abt 1922
Nellie R. Cathell abt 1922

listed under William L and Elsie
Myrl Cathell (same as Merrill?) abt 1905
Charles Cathell abt 1908

listed under James W. (1861)
Anna Cathell abt 1881 (Annie Turner)
Claude Cathell abt 1909

listed under Stewart and (Cyrena) May
Robert W. Cathell abt 1909
Ruth M. Cathell abt 1918

1930 census

listed under Theodore Platt-Monongalia Co (of Stewart and Cyrena May) Coal miner- died Sept 1936
Hazel M Cathell about 1905-spouse from Maidsville WV
Charlotte C Cathell abt 1925
Harley N Cathell abt 1926
Richard L Cathell abt 1927
Della M Cathell abt 1930

Rita M Cathell abt 1895?

listed under Charles R abt 1908-Preston Co (of _________)
Augusta Cathell abt 1908
Mary L Cathell abt 1926
Jack Cathell abt 1928

listed under Charles (abt 1881) (of Platt and Sarah) and Mabel abt (1888) (May) -Preston Co in addition to above)
Mildred M Cathell abt 1921
C Harold Cathell abt 1924
Gerald L. Cathell (Pete-current owner in 2007 of homeplace) abt 1926
Richard G. Cathell (Rich-resides in Chesapeake VA in 2007) abt 1929

listed under Joseph H. (of Platt and Sarah) and Callie V. ( in addition to above )
William E Cathell-abt 1915
Elsie E. Cathell abt 1916
Dorothy C Cathell abt 1917
Ethel D Cathell abt 1919
T Gordon Cathell abt 1921
W. Donald Cathell about 1924

listed under Thomas O (Oscar)-Preston Co (of Stewart and Cyrena May)
Ora M Cathell (spouse?) abt 1895
Roy E Cathell abt 1915
Thelma E Cathell abt 1917
Mary E Cathell abt 1922

listed under Harry E --Taylor Co (of Stewart and Cyrena May)
Elizabeth Cathell (spouse?) abt 1897
Edwin H Cathell abt 1920
Stewart A Cathell abt 1923
Mary S Cathell abt 1926
Dorsey L Cathell abt 1928

"abt" = about date of birth


Etam and Rowlesburg Industry


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