Ancestry of Emily Ann Dean



Written by Diane Hitchcock-Owens

Emily Ann Dean was my mother’s grandmother. Her family originated in Maryland when William Henry (1600-1670) salied for America in the mid 1660’s .William Henry Deane never actually settled in Maryland. His family was in the ship building business and a couple of his sons worked for the British goverrnment. William Henry investigated the possibility of building ships somewhere on the Chesapeake Bay where timber was cheap, but the cost of transporting metals and ship's fittings, together with a scarcity of skilled craftsmen caused him to discard that idea. He also investigated the possibility of establishing trading posts at settlements on both sides of the bay and with Indian tribes, but after several voyages to and from England he decided that the risks involved were too great for the profits derived. Several of his children did stay in the colony and established plantations along the Chesapeake.

William married Elizabeth Dampier. Their son, William Richard (1627-1699), married Elizabeth Meredith. William Richard settled in Dorchester County where he purchased land known as DEAN'S CHOICE on Fox Creek near Wingate. Although his plantation contained several hundred acres he spent most of his time at sea. His occupation was given as Designer and Builder of Ships. His son, Henry Dean (1694-1746) married Elizabeth Summers. These families prospered in the New World.

Henry Dean’s son Thomas Dean (1735-1812) fought in the Revolutionary War and was at Yorktown when Cornwallis was defeated. Thomas married Elizabeth Pritchett Shenton. It is not clear what religious denomination the Dean family belonged to but there seems to be evidence showing the Dean’s were Catholic from a record of Thomas Dean and Elizabeth Shenton’s grandson, Nathan Mathew, being baptized by Father Mosley on December 4,1766. This son also married his Catholic cousin, of Mary Dean, descendant of Thomas James Dean of St.Mary,Maryland.

Subsequent generations moved away from Catholism, merging with the rise of Methodism out of the mid-Atlantic area.Following the war the family migrated to other parts of the country. Thomas and his children, many of whom were adults, moved to Hampshire County, West Virginia. The early settlements in Maryland were confined to areas along the waterways. About 1740 the Appalachian section of Maryland was settled by people from St. Mary’s,Charles, and Prince George’s Counties. These people were of English, Scottish, and Scotch-Irish descent. Germans soon followed. With the completion of the National Road between Cumberland,Pennsylvania,and Wheeling, West Virginia, in 1818 land travel opened up.

Henry Dean son of Thomas and (Elizabeth Shenton) Dean, married Elizabeth Summers. Their son Thomas Dean(1735-1812) married Elizabeth Shenton. This family moved to Hampshire County, West Virginia, and then on to Mercer County, Kentucky Thomas who was considered one of the wealthiest planters in the county.

VIRGINIA/WEST VIRGINIA DEANS In the late 1700’ this line of Deans migrated to Hampshire County, Virginia (presently West Virginia).

In 1750, Robert MacRay established a trading post in the region which would one day become Bedford County. Life on the frontier was full of turmoil, a result of hostilities between the British and French. Raids and attacks from hostile Indians, allies of the French, eventually pressured MacRay to abandon his Raystown outpost. In 1759, the British ousted the French from Fort Duquesne. In preparation, a new road was cut to Raystown and toward the French stronghold. A new garrison at Raystown was named Fort Bedford. The captured French fortification was named Fort Pitt. The new road west was transformed from a network of Indian trails to become known as the Forbes Road. Later, this evolved into a toll road, or turnpike, providing a direct route across the state.

Following the defeat of the French and with the expectation of greater safety afforded by Fort Bedford, the area soon began to increase in population. Pioneers used Forbes Road to reach and settle in the lush valleys and timber-rich mountains. However, outlying communities, such as Saxton, still experienced the dangers of the frontier. Casualties from Indian conflicts were frequent as late as 1780.

Methodism moved out of Baltimore and reached the eastern panhandle of West Virginia in the 1770’s. It moved up the Potomac River into Maryland. In 1781 over half the members of the Berkely Circuit were living on the South Branch of the Potomac River. Memebership grew from 191 members in 1779 to 434 in 1782.

Thomas and Elizabeth (Shenton) Dean moved to Hampshire County, West Virginia circa 1770. Elizabeth died shortly thereafter. Thomas then moved to Mercer County, Kentucky where he was considered one of the largest plantations owners in the county. Thomas then married a woman by the name of Diannah. It was not a happy marriage by Thomas’ own admission and following his death circa 1812 a nasty lawsuit developed over his property among their children.

Thomas Dean, son of Thomas Dean and Elizabeth (Shenton) Dean, married Jane Gilmore who was the daughter of William Gilmore.. William Gilmore had come from Ireland to America in search of religious freedom and settled in the northern panhandle of West Viriginia. He had bought land in Pensylvania but died before he could move there.They were part of the Methodist Circuit ministry.

Upon Thomas’s death circa 1809 Jane apparently decided to make a break from the slave society went to Coshocton County with her children. Two of her daughters remained in West Virginia. Other names associated with this Dean family are Williams, Hancock, Powell, Cooper, Reeder, and Bush.


“In the western most reaches of the Appalachian foothills, two rivers have carved their converging paths to form a third, larger valley that channels their waters first to the Ohio, then to the Mississippi and, finally, the Gulf of Mexico. The names of the three rivers -- Walhonding, Tuscarawas, Muskingum -- and the name "Coshocton," as well, are reminders that, in centuries past, the area that is now Coshocton County was a center of Indian culture and was once the capital of the Delaware nation. Throughout the centuries, man has traveled these valleys -- by canoe and by horseback, then by wagon, canal boat, railroad and now by motor vehicle and in the air. During the Indians' residence, the rivers were their highways through virgin forests so dense they kept the creatures of the woods in semi-darkness from spring to fall. In the autumn of 1764, the valley was the path for some two thousand British soldiers and Lieutenant Colonel Henry Bouquet who came to secure the release of more than two hundred settlers who had been held prisoner by the Indian tribes then waging the Pontiac War. During the mid-1800s, Irish and German immigrants scraped the Ohio-Erie Canal out of the valley floor. The "Big Ditch," which connected the Great Lakes to the Ohio River, would bring to the valley the sixth President of the United States, John Quincy Adams.Later in the century, railroads came to the valley, also following the rivers' natural excavations. Ironically, canal boats carried the rails to build the roadbeds for the next generation of transportation -- one that would render the canal itself obsolete. Trees still line these fertile valleys, providing a haven for the abundant wildlife that has flourished here since before.”

Created in 1810 from Muskingum County, the word Coshocton is a derivative of an Indian word meaning, "union of waters." Coshocton was once the capital of the Delaware Indians. From 1795 to about 1812, the white settlers from the East moved into the area, causing inevitable conflicts and confrontations with the Native Americans. With the railroads' intrusion into Coshocton in the late 1860s, the Indians moved West along with the westbound settlers.”

Life was mainly dependent upon the waterways as the terrain was rocky and unsutable for easy traveling. Keel boats would float up the river and sell their wares to the settlers who had built homes close to the river banks.

The beginning of the Ohio and Erie Canal in 1830 with a port in Roscoe opened the isolated interior of the state and transformed the backwoods settlement into a thriving port.

Nathan Dean, son of Thomas and Jane (Gilmore) Dean married Catharine Williams in Coshocton County, Ohio. Catharine is most likely related to Richard Williams, who was one of the early pioneers to Plainfield, Ohio, where Nathan and Catharine were married.

It is likely Nathan and Catharine followed family to Indiana where Nathan’s uncle had settled in Grant County.Nathan and Catharine settled in Delaware County. Catharine died shortly thereafter and Nathan then married a woman by the name of Mary Wallace-Lytle.


Indiana Territory was organized in 1800. The last Indian resistance was at the Battle of Tippecanoe in 1811.Statehood was granted in 1816 making Indiana the 19th state to enter the Union. Most of the first settlers came from Virginia, Kentucky, and the Carolinas. Later a group of Swiss settled in the southeast part of the state. Many Germans and Irish came to Indiana around 1830. Wayne and Randolph Counties were settled mainly by Quakers who were trying to get away from slavery. In the 1850’s New Englanders settled the northern counties.

The family of Nathan Dean settled Delaware County. Other members of this family settled in Owen, Harrison,Johnson, and Grant Counties. Nathan and Catharine (Williams) Dean’s son Thomas Summers Dean, married Sarah Catharine Powell, daughter of James Powell and Emily Hancock.

The Powell family came from New Jersey and migrated west most likely with the Methodist ministry. Their home in Hampshire County, West Virginia, was a”preaching point.”

The Hancock name is first found in Bedford County, Pennsylvania. In Bedford County Joseph Hancock married Mary Bush in the mid 1700’s. Prior to moving to Bedford County Joseph operated a ferry at what is now Hancock,Maryland.

Mary Bush was most likely the daughter of Abraham Bush. I suspect the Bush family came from Virginia. Mary first married a man by the name of Wallace who was killed by Indians leaving Mary with four children. She then married Joseph Hancock.

Mary was again widowed due to an Indian raid in which Jospeh was killed leaving her with an infant son, Joseph II.This son married Catharine Baltimore, daughter of Philip Baltimore. Catharine’s mother’s name is not known but referred to as “Grandma Baltimore.” Mary lived to be 106 yrs of age.

Emily Ann Dean , daughter of Thomas Summers and Sarah Catharine (Powell) Dean was born in Delaware County,Indiana. As a child she moved with her family to Vernon County, Wisconsin, and then on to St. Clair County, Missouri, where she met and married Joseph Allen Gilkey. In 1890 she and her husband and three children moved to Lane County, Oregon, another daughter, Lillian was born in 1891. Emily was an expert seamstress. Emily joined her children in the San Francisco area after her huband died in 1918. She died on April 05, 1934 after suffering from kindey failure for several years.

For more on Lillian Gilkey's family go to:

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