#393 Archibald Allison

Archibald was born 15 Aug 1708 in Avondale, Lanarkshire, Scotland. He died 6 Oct 1783 in Paxtang, Lancaster Co., Pennsylvania. He was buried in Paxton Presbyterian Churchyard, Harrisburg, Dauphin Co., Pennsylvania.

We don't have any earlier record of Archibald's origin other than immigration from Ireland. However, a family Bible, in the possession of Mrs. G. C. Kling of Lock Haven, Pennsylvania, is inscribed "Property of Mary Kennedy Allison of Kirkmaiden, Scotland." This bible passed from Mary to her son, Matthew Allison. Unless we assume that Archibald was born in Ireland, traveled to Scotland to find a bride, then returned, we might guess he is Scottish by birth. We also have Allisons becoming established in Kirkmaiden by the 1780s with the parish record of Agnes Allison marrying David McKie.

[Pierson/Smith] states that Archibald was from Avondale, Lanarkshire, Scotland and later moved to Kirkmaiden. The family then emigrated to County Monoghan, Ireland. No records have been found of their stay in Ireland, which lasted some 25 years. It is possible any church records were destroyed in the Irish Rebellion of 1922.

Life, in general, was not pleasant for Scots immigrants to Ireland and the family set sail for America. [Linn] has him arriving at the Port of Philadelphia on June 18, 1773. [Morrison] has him arriving in 1783. So far I have not found a 1773 record. There is an Archibald Allison indexed as arriving in Pennsylvania in 1783 by [Virkus].

With the exception of the son, Matthew, the family settled in the Buffalo Valley. At the time, this was located in Northumberland County, Pennsylvania; now it is part of Union County, Pennsylvania.

[Linn2] lists the family as living in White Deer Twp. One son, James, is buried in the White Deer Cemetery. A portion of White Deer Township was split off from the main, forming Buffalo Twp. Archibald is listed as a resident of Buffalo Twp. in 1780. This is the last record of the family in that location and it may be that the family moved to Paxtang for safety from the Indian raids. Archibald's death is listed at the old Paxton Church, and he is probably buried there.

Paxtang Township was in Lancaster Co. during Archibald's time. According to Wikipedia, the spelling "Paxtang" is from the original Indian name Peshtank, which meant "standing water". It is now in Dauphin Co. and has been split into Upper, Middle and Lower Paxton Townships, Harrisburg, various Swatara Townships, Derry, and Susquehanna Township.

Archibald married #395 Mary Kennedy. She is the daughter of John Kennedy. She is an ancestor in the Kennedy Line.

Marriage notes

[Pierson/Smith] states, "Some records give the date of their marriage as of Nov. 30, 1730, but this cannot be correct and would appear to be the birthdate of Mary Kennedy as she survived Archibald by some 25 years, and would have been much younger." This is supported by [Linn] who gives this as Mary's birth date.

We find a 1727 birth date for Mary in the Kirkmaiden records so, while I disagree that it is Mary's birth date, I agree that it is probably not their marriage date.


Mary was born 28 Jun 1727 in Kirkmaiden, Wigtownshire, Scotland. She was baptised 9 Jul 1727 in Kirkmaiden, Wigtownshire, Scotland. She died 6 Jun 1808 in Potter Twp., Centre Co., Pennsylvania.

See the discussion in the Introduction about Mary's birth date, which [Linn] gives it as 1 Nov 1730.

Her birth date is 10 years...almost to the day...from the first Mary. I wonder if that figured in the regranting of the name. Her baptism was at "Kirmaiden by Drummore."

Children of this relationship:

#396MiWilliam Allison(10 Jul 1749–27 Aug 1776)
#397MiiMatthew R. Allison(15 Sep 1750–9 Feb 1828)
#68386MiiiDavid Allison(14 Sep 1751–)
#68387FivCatherine Allison(9 May 1755–)
#401MvArchibald Allison(15 Apr 1761–3 May 1845)
#68388FviJean Allison(15 Sep 1765–)
#1905MviiJames Allison(1769–)
#402FviiiEleanor "Nellie" Allison(11 Nov 1783–)

Archibald Allison, cemetery notes, www.findagrave.com, #42651520.

Frederick A. Virkus, editor, Imigrants to America before 1750, (Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1965). This is a partial (up to 'Battles') list of immigrant names compiled from varous records. Ref. as [Virkus] p. 42

John Blair Linn, Annals of Buffalo County, Pennsylvania 1755-1855, (Harrisburg: L. S. Hart, 1877). Ref. as [Linn2] p. 180

John Blair Linn, History of Centre and Clinton Counties, Pennsylvania, (Philadelphia: Lewis H. Everts, 1883). Ref. as [Linn] p. 174

Leonard Allison Morrison, The History of the Alison or Allison Family in Europe and America: A.D. 1135 to 1893, (Boston: Damrell & Upham, 1893). Ref. as [Morrison]

Mary Kennedy Allison, cemetery notes, www.findagrave.com, #44986844.

Verna Allison Pierson & Marlowe G. Smith, The Allisons of Center County, Pennsylvania, History of the Family and Descendants of Archibald Allison and Mary Kennedy of Kirmaiden, Scotland and Monaghan, Ireland, (unpublished). Ref. as [Pierson/Smith]

Wayne Hannay, transcriber, Register of Births in Kirkmaiden Parish 1699-1720. A copy of birth, baptism and marriage records transcribed from old parish records of Wigtownshire. (http://freepages.genealogy.rootsweb.ancestry.com/~wghannay). Extracted 2 Jan 2016.

Line Generation: 1

Relationship: Great-Great-Great-Great-Great-Grandfather