Abigail (Macy) Stanton

This image was reproduced from a crayon drawing and included in the Stanton book.
“Abigail Stanton (1753-1825), wife of Benjamin Stanton, was a native of Nantucket. When nineteen years of age, in 1772, she emigrated with her parents, David and Dinah Macy, to New Garden, North Carolina.

“After a residence of nearly two years, she was married to Benjamin Stanton, of Carteret County, that state, where she resided during the twenty-five years of her married life, and occupied as a dwelling the house where her husband was born and lived through life, and which was therefore the birthplace of all their children.

“Abigail Stanton, after the death of her husband, which occurred in December of 1798, soon determined to immigrate to Jefferson County, Ohio, with her six minor children. Accordingly, in the spring of 1800, accompanied by her son-in-law and his wife, Aaron and Anna Brown, she left her old home with all its endearing ties, in order to escape the great evil, with its blighting effects, that overshadowed all—taking a part of her husband’s former slaves with her, and leaving behind her three oldest married daughters, Elizabeth Scott, Sarah Williams and Avis Thomas, with their husbands and children. After crossing the Allegheny Mountains, she remained some three or four months near Brownsville, Pennsylvania, awaiting the coming into market of the land where she designed settling, and in the fall of that year, she purchased land from the Government, one mile west of where Mount Pleasant was subsequently located, paying for all squatter improvements thereon, including two log cabins, one of which she occupied a short time. In 1802, she erected a more commodious cabin and occupied it. She was one of the first pioneers in that vicinity. Though her family consisted of six minor children—the eldest being her son Henry, who was but sixteen years old—she kept pace with her neighbors in the improvement of her farm, and hers was among the first bearing orchards. Within two years, her three eldest daughters left the South and came and settled in her vicinity.

“If the property in the South belonging to the heirs of Benjamin Stanton had been in a land of freedom, it would have been of great value; but surrounded by slavery and abandoned by all the kindred, only a small sum was realized for it.

“For the first ten or twelve years following 1802, Abigail Stanton’s children were all located within two miles of her residence, and her house was the great resort of her children and grandchildren. She sold her farm after occupying it for seventeen years, and during the last years of her life, though her home was with her youngest daughter, Lydia Lewis, in Harrisville, she spent much of her time with her daughters Avis Thomas, at Mount Pleasant, and Abigail Mitchner, near Cadiz.

“Her three younger sons, David, Benjamin, and Joseph, studied medicine and became successful practitioners. Sixty grandchildren were numbered among her descendants. All her children, ten in number, arrived at maturity and were married, making twenty in all, and not a death had crossed her threshold.

“Her grandson, the son of Dr. David Stanton, the late Edwin M. Stanton, the great war secretary, in performing such conspicuous part in putting down the Rebellion and sweeping slavery from the land, showed conclusively that the old blood of the exiles was not extinct in her posterity.

“She was a member of the Society of Friends by birthright, had strong faith in the doctrines of that sect, and for many years an Elder in the Society.

“She died at Harrisville, in the month of June, 1825, in the seventy-third year of her age. Her funeral was attended by a large number of relatives and friends. She was buried in Friends’ burying ground, at Harrisville, Harrison County, Ohio.


Children of Benjamin and Abigail (Macy) Stanton

Copied from Byron Stanton's notes on the Stanton Family.

·    David born 11- 3-1774 died in infancy.
·    Elizabeth born 12-24-1775 married Joshua Scott. 
·    Sarah born 1-12-1778 married Richard Williams.
·    Avis born 12- 1-1779 married Jesse Thomas.
·    Anna born 6-12-1782 married Aaron Brown.
·    Henry born 2-25-1784 married Clary Patterson.
·    Abigail born 3-23-1786 married Benj. Mitchner.
·    David born 5- 1-1788 married Lucy Norman.
·    Lydia born 10-11-1790 married William Lewis.
·    Benjamin born 7-28-1793 married Martha Townsend.
·    Joseph born 1- 2-1797 married Mary Townsend.

Benjamin Stanton married, first, Elizabeth (Carver) Jorden, the daughter of James and Eliza-beth Carver, and the widow of Robert Jorden. They had one son, James, born 10-9-1770, who married Rebecca Craddock. They had no children.

Elizabeth Stanton, married Joshua Scott in North Carolina. They moved to Ohio about 1802 or 1803 and lived for some years near Mt. Pleasant, Ohio, in Jefferson Co. They afterwards moved to Logan Co., Ohio, where many of their descendants now live. She and three of her sisters (Avis, Anna, and Abigail) are buried in the Friends' burying ground near Zanesfield, Logan Co. Their  children were—Job, who married Meriba Straught; Jesse, who married Hannah Watson; Hannah, who died, aged 8 years; Anna, who married John Hall; Rebecca, died unmarried; Stanton, who married Esther Edmundson; Enoch M., who married Rebecca Brown (nee Rea); Elizabeth W., married John Fuson or Fewson; Joshua, who married Sarah Harris; Benjamin S., who married Eliza Ann Harris—ten in all.

Sarah Stanton, married Richard Williams in North Carolina, removed to Jefferson Co., Ohio, in 1802. I remember Uncle Richard as a bright, jovial old man, fond of jokes and full of anecdotes. Their children were — Robert, who died in childhood; Eliza, who married, 1st, Micajah Dillingham, 2nd, Axia Jonston; Abigail, who married Jehu Fawcett, of Salem, Ohio, and died 10-10-1835; Dearman, who married Mary Farmer; Deborah, who married Daniel Osborn; Asa, who married Edith Cadwallader; Mary, who married Joseph Emmons; Benjamin, died unmarried; Lydia, married Joseph Stanley; David, married Hannah Young; Edward, married Hanna Bruff—eleven in all, of whom all are deceased. A son of Micajah and Eliza Dillingham died some years since in the Tennessee penitentiary, to which he had been sentenced for assisting a fugitive slave. The descendants of Richard and Sarah Williams are scattered throughout the West, chiefly in Ohio and Iowa.

Avis Stanton, married Jesse Thomas in North Carolina, removed to Ohio about 1802. He was one of the persons I remember to have seen who wore knee-breeches; he wore to the last the costume worn by Friends at the close of the last century and wore his broad-brimmed hat even at the table. He died at Mt. Pleasant, Ohio, (about 1845), and Aunt Avis went to live with one of her children in Logan Co., where in the burying ground of Goshen Meeting House, near Zanesfield, she lies buried. Their children were—Abigail, who married, 1st, Nimrod Hogue and, 2nd, Joseph Lawrence and died at Bellefontaine, Ohio, aged some years over eighty; William, died in childhood; Nathan M., married Pamela Brown, died at Schoolcraft, Michigan, his wife was from New England, he is the author of the memoir of Abigail Stanton cited above; Jonathan, married Sarah Cowgill; Gulielma, died unmarried; Jesse, married Minerva D. Hollenback; David, unmarried; Ann Eliza, married Joseph Roff; Joseph, married Minerva Roff—nine children in all. Some of the descendants of Jesse and Avis Thomas live in Logan Co., Ohio, others in and about Schoolcraft, Michigan.

Anna Stanton, married Aaron Brown in North Carolina. They came to Ohio with grandmother Stanton in 1800 and lived for some years in or near Mt. Pleasant, Ohio, removing afterwards to Logan Co., Ohio. Their children were—Benjamin S., who was a physician in Bellefontaine, Ohio, who married Rebecca Shaw. Their only daughter died soon after arriving at maturity. Mary, who died unmarried; Zaccheus, married Hannah Marmon; Ira, married Rebecca Rea, who, after his death, married his cousin, E.M. Scott; Ezra, twin brother of Ira, died in infancy; Asa, married Hannah Sands, he is deceased, she and her children live near Zanesfield, Ohio; Anna, married John Outland; James, married Elizabeth Ann Willis; Davis, married Susanna Marmon; Martha died unmarried; Elma, married Edward Kenton—eleven children in all. Many, perhaps most, of their descendants reside in Logan Co., Ohio.

Henry Stanton, married Clary Patterson, of Mt. Pleasant, Ohio, 3-30-1809. They lived on a farm in the southern part of Belmont Co., Ohio, not far from Barnesville, where Clary died, May 25, 1860, in the 73rd year of her age. She was born in North Carolina, probably in Guilford Co. Their children were—James, who married, 1st, Rachel Schofield, 2nd, Charity Bundy; Joseph, married Mary Hodgin; Anna died unmarried; Edmond, married Sarah Hoyle; Jordan, died unmarried; Mary, married Joel Dawson; Henry, died unmarried; David died, aged 17 years. Some of their descendants live in Belmont Co., Ohio, others in Iowa and Nebraska. All of the children of Henry and Clary Stanton are deceased except Mary Dawson, who lives (1885) in Barnesville, Ohio, and who writes in June, 1897—"I have been the lone and only surviving one of father's children for 34 years and I can truly say that goodness and mercy have followed me through a long and chequered life."

Abigail Stanton, married Benjamin Michener. She is buried at Goshen Meeting House near Zanesfield, Ohio. Their children were—Levi, who died young; Susanna, who married John Brown and died June 24, 1888, at Zanesfield, aged 78 years and 38 days; John, married Mary Ann Brown; Lydia, married Kersey Graves; Henry, married Lydia Warner; David married Elizabeth Michener; Isaac, married Martha P. Gause; Edwin, married Eliza Anne Smith; Martha, married 1st, William Taylor, 2nd, Allen Williams; Elma, died unmarried. Many of their descendants live in Logan Co., Ohio.

David Stanton, married Lucy Norman. He was a physician in Steubenville, Ohio. She was from Virginia. She was a daughter of Thomas and Mildred Tutt Norman.

Edwin McMasters born Dec. 19, 1814 died 12-24-1869. *see below...
Darwin Erasmus born July 17, 1816
Lucretia born Nov. 30, 1818 died Aug. 1820
Lucy born Apr. 13, 1820 lived only one day
Oella born May 4, 1822
Theophilus born Nov. 27, 1824 lived 12 hours
Pamphila born Feb. 20, 1827 died Feb. 1899

David Stanton came with his mother to Ohio when a boy of 12 years. With his brothers Benjamin and Joseph he studied medicine in Mt. Pleasant, Ohio, with Dr. Hamilton, married and went to Steubenville, where he practiced his profession.

In 1897 his daughter Pamphila writes: "Their first home was on the south side of Market St., above Fifth. Here their sons Edwin and Darwin were born—the house on the south side of Third St., between Market and Washington."

David Stanton was greatly loved and admired both as a physician and as a man. His son Darwin is said to have resembled him in appearance. Lucy Norman came to Ohio with friends of her mother by the name of Starr, whose daughter was her intimate friend, and a widow of the Rev. David McMasters. They probably arrived not earlier than 1813.

Lucy Norman was a Methodist and the marriage was opposed by the Friends and was the cause of David Stanton leaving the Society. They were married by the Rev. David McMasters, a warm personal friend for whom they named their eldest son, but substituted the name of Edwin for David.

The day Dr. Stanton was buried the schools were dismissed that the children might attend the funeral as a mark of the respect in which he was held.

Lydia Stanton married William Lewis of Washington Co., Pa. They had six children, five of whom died in infancy.
Morris died aged 3 years.
Mary Anne married _____ Burns and had one daughter.
Essie married _____ Marsh.
Lucinda died aged 5 years.
Susanna,died aged 3 years.
Lucinda Susanna died aged 1 year.
David died an infant.

William and Lydia Lewis lived for many years on a farm in Hennipen Co., Illinois.

Benjamin Stanton, married Martha Townsend, who was born in Washington Co., Pa., 4-18-1794, died 1-12-1885, aged 91 years.
Rebecca born 1- 9-1819 married Chas. Weaver.
Laura born 9-20-1820 married Barnaby.
Oliver born 7-26-1822 unmarried, died 11-1-1898.
Joseph born 5-30-1824 married Mary H. Fry, died 1885.
Caroline born 6-28-1826 married Geo. W. Addams.
David born 6- 9-1829 married Lydia M. Townsend.
William born 8-28-1832 married Ellen Irish.
Dalton born 8-14-1834 died aged 10 years.
Byron born 8-14-1834 married 1st, Edith M. Weaver, 2nd, Harriet Alice Brown.
Benjamin Lundy born 10-19-1839, died 2-0-1841, aged 16 months.

Joseph Stanton, married Mary Townsend. If related to Martha Townsend, who married Benjamin Stanton, the relationship was distant.
Thomas Townsend, unmarried Died 1857.
Joseph Stanton was a physician and lived in Springboro, Warren Co., Ohio.

About 1832 or 1833 he went as one of a committee of the Warren Co. Medical Society to Wheeling, Va., to investigate the nature and treatment of Asiatic Cholera then prevailing there. He took the disease and died, leaving a widow with one son, Townsend. The latter, after his mother's death, went to California, where he died unmarried. 


Edwin McMaster Stanton
The Great Civil War Secretary ▪ Born 12-19-1814 ▪ Died 12-24-1869

Son of David Stanton (born in Beaufort, NC 1788) and Lucy Norman
Grandson of Benjamin and Abigail Macy Stanton

It is not possible here to do justice to such a character, but it is earnestly hoped that some one will collect and record the facts concerning this great man. However, we cannot pass without noting some selections from "Edwin McMasters Stanton," by F.A. Flower, giving some glimpses of his character.

"William H. Whiton, who was chief clerk in the office of Military Railways during the Rebellion, and knew the inner workings of the War Department intimately, relates this incident:

"I went to the War Office after 10 o'clock, one night, to consult Mr. Stanton. I found the mother, wife, and children of a soldier who had been condemned to be shot as a deserter, on their knees before him pleading for the life of their loved one. He listened standing, in cold and austere silence, and at the end of their heart- breaking sobs and prayers answered briefly that the man must die. The crushed and despairing little family left and Mr. Stanton turned, apparently unmoved, and walked into his private room. My own heart was wrung with anguish. It seemed to me that Mr. Stanton must be a demon—the very incarnation of cruelty and tyranny.

"I was so dazed that, forgetting myself, I followed him into his office without rapping. I found him leaning over a desk, his face buried in his hands and his heavy frame shaking with sobs. 'God help me to do my duty; God help me to do my duty!' he was repeating in a low wail of anguish that I shall never forget. I quickly withdrew, but not until I had seen a great light. I have loved, almost reverenced Edwin M. Stanton ever since. His own heart perhaps was suffering more intense agony than the hearts of his humble petitioners, but he was compelled to steel his outward face for the bloody duties of war, while within, his soul was warm with sympathy and sorrow for its victims.

"Whenever Lincoln moved away from the White House he knew of it and provided one or more trustworthy officers to watch and protect him; he sent warnings to him by telegraph to keep away from the missiles of battle at the front; he frequently advised almost commanded, Grant to avoid exposure to death; while watching Lincoln's life-blood ebb away at midnight he lifted himself out of the confusion of the hour to telegraph precautions for the safety of Grant, when en route from Philadelphia to Washington; he created time to visit or write to every sick or wounded officer and, when battles were in progress, stood at the telegraph instruments night and day urging extra energy in bringing away and caring for the wounded. 

"Adjutant-General Townsend remembers that soon after hostilities ceased he laid before Stanton the findings of a court martial which condemned a soldier to be shot. 'Usually,' says the General, ‘which fact gave commanders such great strength in the field, the Secretary never reversed the findings of his officers; but this time he drew back in horror. 'Blood enough, blood enough,’ was all he said, and the man was not shot. In armed conflict he was the ideal embodiment of aggressive ferocity, of the spirit of war, but 'in peace shuddered at the sight or thought of blood and his heart was wrung by the pains and sorrows even of strangers.’”

An attractive picture of the real Stanton is drawn by Mrs. General Rufus Saxton, of Washington, as follows:

''Secretary Stanton was our guest at Beaufort, North Carolina [this is an error; it was Beaufort, South Carolina] in January, 1865. On arriving he said that fatigue would compel him to retire early; but after dinner, entering our bare, uncarpeted sitting-room, with its few dim candles but a large wood fire on the broad hearth, he sat down in front of the blaze and chatted brightly. Examining the books on the table, his face crew animated and he exclaimed: 'Ah, here are old friends,' and taking up a volume of Macaulay's poems, he turned to me saving, 'I know you love poetry. Pray read us something—anything. Poetry and this fire belong together.' I read ‘Horatius at the Bridge,’ and returning the book to him said: 'I know you love poetry, Mr. Stanton; please read to us.' He at once complied, reading finely 'The Battle of Ivry' and other poems.

"He was in his most genial mood. Every nerve seemed relaxed, and as one after another of the numerous guests departed, he still sat in front of the dying embers till long after midnight, repeating snatches of poetry or indulging in that 'leisurely speech or the higher power of silence—the quiet evening shared by ruminating friends.'

"The next morning we drove him out on the 'Shell Road,' where the live-oaks were draped with graceful gray moss, the birds singing and the air was soft and bland. His capacity for enjoyment seemed intense. He leaned back silent in the carriage, gazing at the blue sky, seeming in spirit to 'soar with the bird and flutter with the leaf.' The Titan War Secretary was replaced by the genial companion, the man of letters, the lover of nature—the real Stanton, who expressed again and again his rapturous enjoyment of the surroundings.

"He was racked by asthma from childhood; denounced and assailed incessantly during his entire career as Secretary of War; crowded out of office after a stormy but patriotic struggle in which he prevented President Johnson from seizing the army, shackling Congress, and renewing the war; and, then, worn out, poor, and broken-hearted, laid down to die—only 55 years old." 

By William Henry Stanton