Analysis: Children of Hugh Cowan of Octoraro Creek



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Person:Hugh Cowan (4)
Document. Will of Hugh Cowan of Octoraro Creek, Chester County PA, 1776


Source:Fleming, 1971 identifies five children of Hugh Cowan by first wife Ann Matthias, and another 6 by second wife Mary Scott. These children are listed below, along with the evidence that supports their relationship to Hugh, and vita information based on Fleming 1971.


Children by Ann MatthiasDOBDODSpouseComment
James Cowan17251751Catherine HopeIndenture of 7 Nov 1748 transfers land from Hugh Cowan to James, and identifies James as son of Hugh, and eldest son and heir at law. HIs will was made Sept 1751. He mentions sister Jean, father Hugh, brother Joseph, wife Katren, and an unnamed child presumably expected to be born posthumously.
John Cowan17271748-died unmarried, no sources cited by Fleming.
Joseph Cowan17291777Mary ScottFleming cites Chester PA Deed Book B:511, in which Joseph receives land from Hugh Cowan to son James. Hugh is identified in James Cowan's will as his brother. Not mentioned in Hughs will of 1776. Numerous descendants
Jean Cowan1731Mentioned in will of brother Joseph in 1751. No further data.
Mathias Cowan*17341819Rachel GrayListed in Hugh's will of 1776 as a son.
Children by Mary* ScottDOBDODSpouseComment
David*174217861) Mary Grey
2) Elizabeth Parke
Numerous Male descendants; no evidence given
Elizabeth--David Parke*Listed as a soninlaw in Hughs 1776 will, but Elizabeth not listed. Possibly Elizabeth is dead by this date, but alternatively David Parke may have been married to Ann Cowan who is listed in the will.
Margaret*--Robert Cowan*No evidence in Fleming, but will identifies him as a soninlaw.
William174918361) Sarah Bannister Henderson
2) Mary Hubbard Wilson
Weak documentation. Not listed in Hughs will of 1776

*Mentioned in Hugh's 1776 will
**Mary is identified as his wife in Hugh Cowans 1776 will
It is curious that the wives of both Hugh and his son Joseph are identified as "Mary Scott". This may indicate that a) there were two separate "Mary Scott's", b) an error in identification, or c) that Joseph died relatively young, and Hugh then married his son's widow. The latter possibility is ruled out given that Joseph died in 1777, and Hugh's will was probated the following year. Fleming states explicitly that there were indeed two Mary Scott's, assumes they were kinswomen, but does not know their relationship.