The Old Homestead

Lewis

Home
Bowers
- Bowers photos
Beagle
Bellas
- Bellas/Bellesfeld sources
Custard
Decker
de la Montagne
Dutch ancestors in New Netherland
Erb
Frederick
Fries
Gerwig
Goehring
Graff
Hartzel
Hawk
- Hawk sources
Hess
Jerman
Keyser
Knoepp
Kvarnberg
Larson
Lesnett
Lewis
McDaniel
McDonald
Moyer
Nye
- Nye - photos
Olson
Paulson
Piersol
- Piersol - Resources and information
Potter
Price
- Price - photos
- Price - Germany data
Reiss/Rice
Schwenk
Sjödin-Wiberg
Sorenson
Stamm
Stauffer
Stilly
Thompson
Tracht
Tracy
van der Mark
Van Gorder
- Van Gorder sources
Warner
Ziegler

PLEASE NOTE: All content on this site is being transferred to http://bowershomestead.com/


Ralph Lewis emigrated from Glamorganshire, Wales, to Chester County, Pa., in the 1680s. 

Updated: October 2005

RALPH and MARY LEWIS
Ralph Lewis lived in Treverigg in Glamorganshire, Wales, in the late 1600s. (1)
Probably married Mary. (2)
Children: (3)
Mary, born 1674. Married James Sharpless.
Martha. Married David Hugh.
David.
Evan.
Lydia, born 1683. Married Joseph Sharpless.
Abraham.
Samuel.
Thomas, born 1687.
Sarah, born 1691. Married William Walter.
The Lewis family appears to have left Wales in 1783. On the 10th day of the 7th month of 1683, the Quaker meeting near Treverig issued a certificate stating than Ralph Lewis was a member in good standing. It states that "Ralph Lewis, wth his family, passing ye same time with our frind John ap Bevan, for Pensylvania." (4)
The immigration of the Bevans and Lewises is mentioned in "Colonial and Revolutionary Families of Pennsylvania." The account states: "John Bevan, eldest son of Evan ap John, born on the ancestral estate of Treverigg, parish of Llantrissant, county of Glamorganshire, in the year 1646, inherited the estate of Treverigg at the death of his father about 1665. … He became a member of the Society of Friends and was for many years an esteemed minister of that sect, travelling extensively on that service. He became interested in founding a colony of Welsh Quakers in Pennsylvania, and as agent for a company of them purchased 2,000 acres of William Penn, a part of which was surveyed in Haverford township, Chester county, and about 300 acres in Merion, Philadelphia county. He also purchased a tract of land for his brother, Charles Bevan, and made several purchases in his own name. On the 10th of the 7th month (September) 1683, a certificate was granted by the Friends Meeting at Treverigg for John Bevan, his wife Barbara, and their children, to remove to Pennsylvania. They were accompanied by Ralph Lewis and a number of other Welsh Quakers who settled near them. His land was laid out in different parts of Philadelphia and Chester counties, and he settled on a tract of 300 acres in Merion." (5) The book also mentions "Ralph and Mary Lewis, of Treverig, Glamorganshire, who came to Pennsylvania in 1683, and settled in Haverford township, Chester county, later removing to Upper Darby, where Ralph Lewis died September, 1712 and Mary, August 1704." (6)
The business relationship between John Bevans and Ralph Lewis was outlined in a deed described in "Abstracts of Chester County, Pennsylvania, Land Records, Vol. 1, 1681-1736." The abstract of the 1706 deed to Thomas Reece (also spelled Reese and Rees in the document) states: "Whereas William Penn on 16 & 17 Mar 1681 granted to John Bevans of Troorigg in the parish of Lantrsaint in the county of Glamorgan in Wales, yeoman, 2000 acres. Whereas 250 of the 2000 acres was only held in trust for Ralph Lewis. John Bevans did discharge the trust by deed dated 8 Aug 1683 and grant to Ralph Lewis 250 acres. Whereas the 250 acres was laid out in the Welsch Tract by survey dated 13 Mar 1684." (6a)
The transaction between Ralph and Thomas Reece was initiated in February 1691, but it wasn’t actually completed until 1706. By that time, both men lived in Darby.
The Lewises apparently moved to Darby Township at about the time of the 1691 transaction. The "Originall Record of the Township of Darby in the County of Chester" lists the names of "the first adventurers from Old England who settled in the Township of Darby" and Ralph Lewis appears among those who settled in 1691. (7) However, his daughter Mary’s marriage certificate states that Ralph still belonged to the Haverford meeting. And a deed dated June 14, 1692, mentions "Ralph Lewis of Haverford, planter." (7a)
Chester County court records show Ralph receiving deeds for: 150 acres along Darby Creek in Darby on June 14, 1692; 100 acres in Haverford on March 12, 1694; 300 acres in Edgmont on June 5, 1701; 250 acres in "Havford" on the 15th day, 11th month of 1701; and 400 acres in Darby on April 1, 1709. (8)
Ralph’s wife Mary is said to have died in 1704. (9)
On Aug. 28, 1705, Ralph wrote a deed granting the 300-acre Edgmont to his son Evan "for love & affection." However, the transaction does not appear to have been completed until May 6, 1712, a few months before Ralph died. (10)
On April 20, 1708, Ralph wrote a deed granting 150 acres in Darby and 100 acres in Haverford to Samuel Lewis of Darby – probably his son. On June 17, 1712, he wrote a deed granting 250 acres in Darby to Samuel Lewis of Darby. (10a)
Ralph died between Sept. 9 and 19, 1712. (11)
(1) Records from the Quakers’ Radnor Monthly Meeting, transcribed in "Genealogy of the Sharpless Family," by Gilbert Cope, 1887, page 102. An account of the ancestry of Ralph Lewis is contained in "Ancestry of Sharpless Moore and Rachel (Roberts) Moore," compiled by Blanche Haines, 1937, page 57. I have not yet tried to confirm any of the details so I cannot recommend it as a reliable source. It states: "A memorandum, dated Nov. 20, 1899, signed by Thomas Alien Glenn, in possession of Mrs. Charles Shumaker Jack of Media, Pennsylvania, gives the ancestry of William Lewis and Ralph Lewis (brothers and the immigrants to Pennsylvania) to Richard Gwyn as follows: ‘William Lewis, immigrant, was son of Ralph Lewis of Llanishen, a landbolder in Eglwysilan in 1683, who married Ann Prichard; that Ralph Lewis was the son of David Lewis, landholder in Eglwysilan, who died in 1630; that David Lewis was son of Edward Lewis of Llanishen, who was the son of Edward Lewis, a large landholder in Eglwysilan and Sheriff of Glamorganshire in 1548. This Edward Lewis married Ann, daughter of W. Morgan of Pencoed, and was the son of Lewis ap Richard Gwyn.’" A few things about Ralph’s family can be determined from a letter from Ralph’s brother William. First, William and Ralph had another brother named David. In addition, Ralph’s mother was probably named Prichard since the letter mentions that "youre unkel thomas prichard" had died. The letter is transcribed in "Genealogy of the Sharpless Family," page 103. (2) Although I have not yet turned up a reference to Mary in primary sources, the secondary sources are unanimous in listing Ralph’s wife as a woman named Mary. Virtually all of them rely on "Genealogy of the Sharpless Family," by Gilbert Cope, for their basic information. (3) The children are listed in "Wills: Abstracts, Book C : 1705-1714: Philadelphia Co, PA," at the USGenWeb Archives. This does not appear to be the correct birth order since Evan is listed as Ralph’s third son in land records appearing in "Abstracts of Chester County, Pennsylvania, Land Records, Vol. 2, 1729-1745," by Carol Bryant, pages 146-147. The birth dates and spouses are cited in "Genealogy of the Sharpless Family," page 104. Mary and Lydia’s marriage certificates are transcribed on pages 105 and 120, respectively. David Hugh lists Ralph Lewis as his father-in-law and Martha as his wife in his will, which is recorded in Philadelphia County, Pa., Will Book C, page 160, as cited in Wills: Abstracts, Book C : 1705-1714: Philadelphia Co, PA," at the USGenWeb Archives. (4) The certificate is transcribed in "Genealogy of the Sharpless Family," page 102. (5) "Colonial and Revolutionary Families of Pennsylvania," Lewis Publishing Co., 1911, page 138. (6) "Colonial and Revolutionary Families of Pennsylvania," page 1356. (6a) "Abstracts of Chester County, Pennsylvania, Land Records, Vol. 1, 1681-1736," by Carol Bryant, 1997, page 87. (7) "Genealogy of the Smedley Family Descended from George and Sarah Smedley, Settlers of Chester County Pennsylvania," by Gilbert Cope, Lancaster, Pa., 1901, page 10. (7a) "Abstracts of Chester County, Pennsylvania, Land Records, Vol. 1, 1681-1736," by Carol Bryant, 1997, page 23. (8) The first two transactions appear in "Abstracts of Chester County, Pennsylvania, Land Records, Vol. 1, 1681-1736," by Carol Bryant, 1997, page 118. The 1701 transactions appear in "Records of the Courts of Chester County, Pennsylvania," Colonial Society of Pennsylvania, pages 78 and 89, respectively. The Edgmont tract is identified by location in "Abstracts of Chester County, Pennsylvania, Land Records, Vol. 2, 1729-1745," by Carol Bryant, pages 146-147. The 1709 transaction appears in "Abstracts of Chester County, Pennsylvania, Land Records, Vol. 1, 1681-1736," by Carol Bryant, 1997, page 117-118. (9) "Genealogy of the Sharpless Family," page 104. (10) "Abstracts of Chester County, Pennsylvania, Land Records, Vol. 2, 1729-1745," by Carol Bryant, pages 146-147. (10a) The deeds appear in "Abstracts of Chester County, Pennsylvania, Land Records, Vol. 1, 1681-1736," by Carol Bryant, 1997, pages 188 and 154, respectively. (11) Ralph wrote his will on Sept. 9 and it was proved Sept. 19. It is listed at "Wills: Abstracts, Book C : 1705-1714: Philadelphia Co, PA," at the USGenWeb Archives and also at "Abstracts of Wills of Chester County, Pennsylvania, Vol. 1, 1714-1758," compiled by Jacob Martin, page 548.


EVAN and ANN LEWIS
Evan Lewis was the son of Ralph Lewis. He might have been born in his father’s hometown of Treverig, Glamorganshire, Wales. (1)
Married a woman named Ann. According to one source, she was Ann David and they married in the third month of 1707. (2)
Children: (3)
Evan Jr.
Jesse.
John. Ann. Married Nicholas Steer.
Mary. Married Peter Babb.
Hanna. Married John Sinkler.
Others are possible.
Evan grew up in Chester County, Pa., where his parents were among the earliest settlers. His father, Ralph Lewis, had immigrated about 1683, apparently in a party led by Quaker leader John Bevan. (4)
On Aug. 28, 1705, Ralph wrote a deed granting 300 acres in Edgmont to his son Evan "for love & affection." However, is appears that the land wasn’t actually conveyed to Evan until May 6, 1712. (5)
Evan later moved to "the western part of Brandywine in the County of Chester," which is listed as his residence in a deed dated April 5, 1720. In that deed, Evan granted 50 acres of the Edgmont tract to Samuel Lewis – possibly his brother. (6)  The move is mentioned in a narrative concerning Evan's father, Ralph.  It states: "Evan settled in Edgmont township, but about 1720 removed to Caln township, near twenty-five miles back in the woods; and on the 22d of Feb. 1747-8, he conveyed to certain trustees a lot of two acres upon which West Caln Meeting House was soon after erected and a burying ground established." (7)
Evan Lewis is listed on 1737-8 tax list of West Caln Township. Jesse Lewis is listed in the same township as an inmate, which normally indicates that he was a married man living on another’s property. It’s likely that Jesse was Evan’s son or nephew. in the same township. (8)
On Nov. 2, 1762, Evan Lewis and Ann, his wife, conveyed property to Thomas Babb, yeoman. Thomas Babb is listed as a grandson of the said Evan Lewis, and eldest brother and heir at law of John Babb. The property is beside land owned by Peter Babb and land of Sampson Babb. (9)
(1) Evan is listed as the third son of Ralph Lewis in land records contained in "Abstracts of Chester County, Pennsylvania, Land Records, Vol. 2, 1729-1745," by Carol Bryant, pages 146-147. At least two other Evan Lewises lived in the area during this time, according to Chester County estate records. The will of Evan Lewis of Whiteland, husband of Maud, was filed March 28, 1727, in Will Book A, page 224. The will of Evan Lewis of Newtown, husband of Mary, was filed Aug. 26, 1735, in Will Book A, page 432. These are listed in the USGenWeb Archives. Evan is also listed in Ralph’s will, which appears in "Abstracts of Wills of Chester County, Pennsylvania, Vol. 1, 1714-1758," compiled by Jacob Martin, page 548. (2) Numerous records mention that Evan’s wife was named Ann, including Chester County, Pa., Deed Book M, page 528. Ann’s maiden name and the wedding date are mentioned in "Genealogy of the Sharpless Family," by Gilbert Cope, Philadelphia, 1887, page 104. (3) Evan does not appear to have left a will but these children appear in the records of various Quaker meetings in southeastern Pennsylvania. Ann appears in "The William Wade Hinshow Index to Pennsylvania Quaker Meeting Records," Kennett Monthly Meeting, established 1686 as Newark Monthly Meeting in Chester County, Vol. VI, indexed by Selby Publishing and Printing, page 4. Hanna’s wedding appears in "Quaker Marriage Certificates, Concord Monthly Meeting, Delaware County, Pennsylvania, 1679-1808," by Gwen Boyer Bjorkman, pages 41-42. Jesse and John appear in "Early Church Records of Chester County, Pennsylvania, Vol. 1, Quaker Records of Bradford Monthly Meeting," by Martha Reamy, 1995, pages 132 and 134, respectively. Ann is not specifically identified as the daughter of the elder Evan and Ann. However, the elder pair and Jesse Lewis are the only Lewises listed as witnesses at her wedding, which is listed in the Bradford records on page 41. The younger Evan isn’t mentioned as a child, either, but the link is pretty certain since Quaker records list him as "Evan Lewis Jr." and he appears in the records during the same time as Evan’s other children. Two other Lewises appear in the Bradford Quaker records during this time but it’s uncertain whether they have any connection with Evan and Ann. They are Phinehas and Sampson, appearing on page 132. (4) "Colonial and Revolutionary Families of Pennsylvania," Lewis Publishing Co., 1911, page 138. (5) "Abstracts of Chester County, Pennsylvania, Land Records, Vol. 2, 1729-1745," by Carol Bryant, pages 146-147. Evan may have purchased an additional property in Edgmont Township in 1708/9. "Evan Lewis of Newtown, yeoman," purchased 240 acres along Crum Creek in a deed recorded Feb. 26, 1708/9, according to "Abstracts of Chester County, Pennsylvania, Land Records, Vol. 1, 1681-1736," by Carol Bryant, 1997, page 127. At this time, our Evan seems to have lived in Edgmont already. However, another Evan Lewis lived in Newtown. (6) "Abstracts of Chester County, Pennsylvania, Land Records, Vol. 2, 1729-1745," by Carol Bryant, page 147. (7) "Genealogy of the Sharpless Family," by Gilbert Cope, Philadelphia, 1887, page 104. (8) "Tax List of West Caln Township (1737-8): Chester County, PA," in the USGenWeb Archives. (9) Chester County, Pa., Deed Book M, page 528.

Contact me at bebowers@hotmail.com

God demonstrates his own love for us in this:
While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
- Romans 5:8