Facts and Events
- The Western Pennsylvania Historical Magazine, Vol. 59, No. 1, Page 16, January 1976 – Fort Pitt and the Revolution on the Western Frontier by Edward G. Williams.
- "About the beginning of 1774, appeared upon the scene at Pittsburgh Dr. John Connolly, not a stranger there, since we know that George Washington met him at Samuel Semple’s Tavern in 1770 and that Connolly had married SEMPLE’S SISTER, SUSANNAH."
- (ie. Capt. Samuel Semple, ASST QTR MR - Susannah's brother).S1
- Burton, Clarence Monroe. John Connolly, a Tory of the Revolution. (Worcester, Massachusetts: The Davis Press, 1909), Page 38.
- "Connolly's first wife, as noted above, was Susanna Semple, A DAUGHTER of Samuel Semple, a tavern keeper in Pittsburg."
- (ie. Samuel Semple, Yeoman - Susannah's father).S1
- Reuben Gold Thwaites, Louise Phelps Kellogg. Documentary History of Dunmore's War, 1774: Compiled from the Draper Manuscripts in the Library of the Wisconsin Historical Society and published at the charge of the Wisconsin Society of the Sons of the American Revolution. (Madison, Wisconsin: Wisconsin Historical Society, 1905), Page 42.
"Dr. John Connolly was born in Lancaster County, Pa., about 1750. He was well connected, and married A DAUGHTER of SAMUEL SEMPLE, a noted Pittsburgh Lawyer."
- (ie. Samuel Semple, Yeoman - Susannah's father).S1
- Both Father & Son Samuel's were involved with the Tavern.S1
- ↑ Patrick Hogue (Samples). The Samples / Semples Family, Descendants of Samuel Samples.
- Margaret Pearson Bothwell. The Western Pennsylvania Historical Magazine: Edward Ward Trail Blazing Pioneer. (Pennsylvania, June 1960), Vol. 43. No. 2, 1960.
Pages 114, 115
The blow dealt both the Sample family and the Wards by Connolly's treachery must have stunned them. Samuel Sample, in 1776, felt constrained to visit John Connolly in jail in Philadelphia and, by so doing, had a web of suspicion woven around him (68)
His sister, Susannah, Connolly's wife, probably had pleaded with him to make the visit and to pave the way for her to visit her husband (69)
Any compassionate brother would have done the same thing. Susannah visited her husband in jail in July, and her plea to Congress in that month told of the plight in which she found herself.
Her petition (70) to Congress was dated July 8, 1776. She signed it Susanna Connolly - Part of her petition follows "I must say I think it very cruel if I must be detained here from an only Child; and without any allowance for my subsistence, which is not deny'd even to those that have acted quite different from me who, from the natural ties of Affection came to see a Husband in Confinement, dangerously ill. If you imagine, Gentlemen, it is in my power to prejudice you in the Country, I am willing to be confined to Pittsburgh where my child is." She also pointed out that such a course would save the "unnecessary Expence" of supporting her in Philadelphia and would afford her the "Satisfaction of seeing" her child. The clouds of disgrace were darkening over the Ward and Sample families.
Susannah's letter was referred to the Committee of Safety with the request that it "make proper provision for her till further order of Congress." (71)
(68) Pa. Archives (First Series), IV, pp. 728-29.
Colonial Records, X, p. 533. This relates to the action taken by the "Committee of Safety Philada 2nd April 1776" as a result of Samuel Sample's visit to Conolly.
(69) Journals of Congress —Minutes of Monday, May 13, 1776. It was "Resolved, That Mrs. Connolly, wife of John Connolly, have leave to visit her husband in jail."
(70) Pa. Archives, IV,pp. 782-83.
- Hanna, Charles Augustus. The Wilderness Trail, or, The ventures and adventures of the Pennsylvania traders on the Allegheny Path: with some new annals of the Old West, and the records of some strong men and some bad ones. (Lewisburg, Pennsylvania: Wennawoods Publishing, c1995), Page 84.
It has sometimes been stated that George Croghan and William Trent were brothers-in-law. How they became so is not clear. William Trent's only sister, Mary, married Nathaniel French, of Philadelphia. Trent himself married Sarah Wilkins, possibly a daughter of one of the Indian Traders of that name. Croghan 's nephew, it will be remembered, was Doctor John Connolly, the Loyalist. Connolly was the son of John Connolly, Sr., a native of Ireland, and of Susanna Howard, sister of Gordon Howard, one of the early Indian Traders of Lancaster County. She first married James Patterson, the Trader, and after his death. Dr. Thomas Ewing, of Lancaster. John Connolly, Sr., was her third husband. Doctor Connolly, their son, married Susanna Semple, daughter of Samuel Semple, the innkeeper of Fort Pitt, who furnished Washington such good entertainment in 1770. If Croghan's wife was a Wilkins, and sister to William Trent's wife, it is possible she also may have been a sister to Samuel Semple's wife, the mother of Susanna Connolly; and this would have made Connolly Croghan's nephew, by marriage. The name of Croghan's own daughter, as shown by his will, was Susanna; which was also the Christian name of Connolly's mother, as well as that of his wife. But it is difficult to see how Croghan could have been a brother-in-law to Trent, who married Sarah Wilkins, and also to John Connolly, Sr., who married Susanna Howard, the widow of Doctor Ewing, unless, indeed, Sarah Wilkins and Susanna Howard may have been half-sisters, and one of them Croghan's wife's sister.
- Burton, Clarence Monroe. John Connolly, a Tory of the Revolution. (Worcester, Massachusetts: The Davis Press, 1909).