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 Margaret Jane <I>Ralston</I> Kennedy

Margaret Jane Ralston Kennedy

Manchester, Adams County, Ohio, USA
Death 1887 (aged 86–87)
Douglas County, Kansas, USA
Burial Douglas County, Kansas, USA
Memorial ID 11016743 · View Source
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Margaret Jane Ralston Kennedy was born in Manchester, Adams County, Ohio on 27 Oct 1800.

She was the daughter of Jonathan "John" Ralston and Elizabeth "Betsy" Pitzer Ralston of Brown County, Ohio. Margaret named her second son Jonathan Ralston Kennedy in honor of her father.

Her Ralston family was known as Scot-Irish, although they were not Irish at all. The family, staunch Presbyterians living in Scotland, was forced by the English King James to relocate to Ireland to develop the Protestant religion in Ireland and to counter the Roman Catholic uprisings in Ireland. These forcibly relocated Scots, including the Ralstons, were then the victims of violent religious persecution from both the Roman Catholic Irish and eventually also by the English king, who then wanted to force his Church of England religion on them. For this reason, they emigrated to America in the 1700's, first settling in Pennsylvania, where they hoped William Penn would be tolerant of their Presbyterian religion.

Margaret Jane was the sister of Letitia "Lettie" Ralston, John Ralston, Robert Ralston, Joseph B. Ralston and Elizabeth "Eliza" Ralston.

She married William Hugh Kennedy on 22 June 1820 in Clermont County (which later became Brown County), Ohio.

In 1845, her husband Hugh Kennedy died suddenly in a cholera epidemic in Brown County, Ohio.

She was the mother of twelve children, all born in Brown County, Ohio. Her children were: Mary Ann Kennedy Liming, William Bainbridge "Bridge" Kennedy, Jonathan Ralston Kennedy, Sarah Jane Kennedy Neal, Zanetta "Nettie" Olive Kennedy Curless, Catherine "Cate" Blackburn Kennedy Holloway, Thomas Hamer Kennedy, Oliver Perry Kennedy, Leander Jackson Kennedy, Joseph Warren Kennedy (who died as a baby in Brown County, Ohio), Matilda M. Kennedy and Salina F. Kennedy Hindman (#11016746).

In 1854, a widow, she traveled with most of her adult children and their families to Fulton County, Indiana where her brother Robert Ralston resided at the time. (Not Fulton County, Illinois.) Robert died a year after Margaret visited him.

From there, they were joined by her eldest son, William Bainbridge "Bridge" Kennedy and his wife Elizabeth Jane Curless Kennedy, both of whom had lived in Schuyler County, Illinois where they had married on March 21, 1847 and resided for some time. Bridge's wife's widowed mother and some of her siblings joined them in the Kennedy migration to Kansas.

In 1855 Margaret Ralston Kennedy then made an overland journey with a group of about 25 relatives, relocating to Wakarusa, Douglas County, Kansas where she remained for the rest of her life.

The area on the Wakarusa River where the approximately 25 Kennedy relatives settled was known as the Kennedy Valley, sometimes called Pleasant Valley.

Margaret Jane was the teacher in the first school in Kennedy Valley.

She is buried in this Kennedy family cemetery surrounded by her loving family.




  • Maintained by: familysearcher
  • Originally Created by: Jennifer
  • Added: 24 May 2005
  • Find A Grave Memorial 11016743
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for Margaret Jane Ralston Kennedy (27 Oct 1800–1887), Find A Grave Memorial no. 11016743, citing Kennedy Cemetery, Douglas County, Kansas, USA ; Maintained by familysearcher (contributor 47502388) .