Shirley Family

John Shirley Nov 17, 1728 died Aug 26, 1821. He married Charity____(last name unknown). She was born in 1723 and died in 1817. They are buried in a family plot in a small cemetery on the Nelson farm, midway between Newry, Pennsylvania and Catfish, near the James Hammet farm. It is also known as the Kladder cemetery, Blair Co. PA., as stated in the Altoona Tribune, May 30, 1914.  

John and Charity were living in Frederick Co. MD as early as 1750. In the Land Records for Frederick Co. MD:  William Shirley to John Shirley, Sale, liber B folio 324 Jan 28, 1750. Another record:  1763 Jul 11 Liber G/H pg 536 - John Coon made 22 Jun 1763 between John Shirley for 260 pcm Penn. sells part of Parks Hall adj to Wm Andersons part of Parke Hall and a corner of Hugh Magraugh's part. containing 111 acres on a draught of Little Antietam. signed John Shurley before Jos. Smith, James Smith. Rec'pt acknowledged. Charity Shirley wife of John Shirley released dower. AF and duty paid.

It is believed John may be a descendant of Richard Shirley but we do not have proof. This Richard lived St. Mary Co. MD and this family also married into the NORRIS family as did George, son of John Shirley. 

(only John's son, George, will be listed here. To see the entire genealogy of John 1728 visit this website:

1. George Shirley 1761 PA, died May 8, 1824 Morgan Co. Ohio. He married Ruhannah Norris born Dec 21, 1767 Washington Co. MD d. abt 1827.  She was the daughter of Joseph Norris born Jan 11, 1729 Washington, Co. Maryland and Mary Moody born Dec 11, 1730 Wales.

George and Ruhanna lived near Saxton in Bedford Co. PA. He served during the Revolutionary War as a fifer in Captain Lawrence Keene's Company , Colonel John Patton's Regiment of Foot, Continental Troops. He enlisted Apr 24, 1777 and his name last appears on the company pay roll Apr 1779.

The Shirleys left Bedford Co. PA and went to Ohio. They built a raft and with all of their household goods, went down the Monongahela River to Pittsburgh and then down the Ohio River to Marietta, Washington Co. Ohio.


(1). John Shirley 1787 Olive Twp, Huntington Co. PA, died Mar 5, 1853 Rome Twp. Athens Co. Ohio. He married  1st Catherine Shanklen May 14, 1811 in Washington Co. Ohio born 1792 d. 1821. He married 2nd Maria Mathews June 20, 1822 in Morgan Co. Ohio. She was b. May 10, 1797 VA d. Sept 27, 1887 Decatur Twp. Washington Co. Ohio buried Gideon Ellis Cemetery, Decatur, Washington Co Ohio

John enlisted in the War of 1812 at Marietta Ohio office in May of 1813. He was a private under Capt. Absalom Martin and General William H. Harrison. He served in the Ohio Militia under Capt. Hill.

Maria is listed in the 1860 Athens Co. Census- Rome Twp., Federalton PO
She is listed as 63 years old, a farmers widow. $855 property value and $525 personal property value.

children by Maria Mathews

A. John Grant Shirley Dec 1825 Morgan Co. Ohio, died May 23, 1908 San Fernando Valley, CA. m. 1st Mary Jane Coleman July 28, 1853 Athens Co. Ohio born 1838, d. 1862 Ft. Smith, Arkansas, m. 2nd Eliza A. Box Jan 11, 1866 Arkansas, MO [SEE BELOW]

B. Joseph Shirley Mar 3, 1827Athens Co. Ohio, died Dec 11, 1900 m.  Laurinda Totman Jan 28, 1849 Athens Co. Ohio

C. Maria Shirley Feb 22, 1829 Athens Co. Ohio, d. Oct 29, 1913 Beebe, Athens Co. Ohio, m. George France Jan 28, 1851 Athens Co. Ohio born July 4, 1830 Decatur Twp Washington Co. Ohio, died Mar 9, 1903 Beebe, Athens co. Ohio

D. Wesley Shirley 1831 Cincinnati, Ohio

E. Nelson Shirley July 29, 1833 died Aug 19, 1890 buried Decatur Twp, Washington Co. Ohio  m. 1st Elizabeth France, 2nd Lucy Cole Wickham . Nelson was injured in the Civil War. He was a blacksmith.

F. Silas Shirley Mar 19, 1836 Morgan Co. OH, died Feb 29, 1924 Logan Co. AR. buried Paint Rock Cemetery, Logan Co. AR,  m. 1st Dimarus Abigail Driggs April 2, 1856 Big Run, Athens Co. OH  m. 2nd Letha Yielding Lowry Oct 16, 1881 Logan Co. AR (they divorced), m. 3rd Arbelle E. Copeland Jan 1, 1885.  

G. Jane Shirley  Jan 2, 1839 Athens Co. Ohio d. Jan 27, 1928 Strouds Run, Athens Co. OH  m. Phillip Totman May 1, 1855 Athens Co. OH born Feb 19, 1827 OH, d. Dec 12, 1887 Rome, Athens Co. OH

Jane Shirley Totman

H. Elisha Shirley 1841 Athens Co. Ohio d.1864 Paris, Logan Co. AR from injuries received in war. He married Eliza Ann Box 


John Grant Shirley enlisted in the Union Army during the Civil War. He served as a bugler and was wounded during the war in Arkansas while fighting the Indians. After the war he came home to find his wife had been unfaithful. He took his girls, Samanthia Fedelia and Flavis and moved to Paris, Logan Co. AR where his brothers Silas and Elisha lived. 

A year after the death of his brother, Elisha Shirley, John Grant Shirley married his widow Eliza Ann Box Shirley. In 1978 John and Eliza moved to Burnet Co. Texas where they bought land and settled on the Colorado Dam. This is the area where the Burchanan Dam stands now. Eliza was a midwife and helped to bring many early-day Burnet Co. babies into the world. She also had knowledge of home remodies made from herbs and plants. She helped to doctor the sick.

This family moved from Texas to Oregon abt 1906.