Muckleston/Edward Muckleston 1802-1884

From Biographies
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Edward Muckleston (13th September 1802 – 21st October 1884) (age 82)

He took his family from a poor mining town on the Wales / England border to the USA and started a new dynasty of professional and well-known Mucklestons.


Key Events
Date Event
13 September 1802 Edward is born in Trefonen, officially in Wales it is near Oswestry in Shropshire
03 October 1802 Edward is baptised in Oswestry
July 1831 His father dies
December 1834 His mother dies
20 April 1838 Edward marries Anne Edwards
15 July 1838 Daughter Alice is baptised
01 February 1840 Sone Allen F Muckleston is born
04 June 1842 Daughter Alice dies aged 3 years old
20 June 1842 A second daughter is born and she is named Alice
1844 Son John is born
1846 Edward and his family emigrate to the USA and settle in Delafield Township, Waukesha, Wisconsin USA
05 April 1847 Edward first applies to become a citizen of the USA
1848 Son Edward Edwards Muckleston is born
1848 Edward registers 40 acres of land in his name
22 August 1862 Son Allen enlisted in the Wisconsin Infantry to fight in the Civil War
16 April 1873 Edward finally becomes a citizen of the United States
07 April 1877 Edward's wife Anne dies
1883 He is living with sons Allen and John alternatively
16 April 1884 Daughter Alice dies following her admittance to the Oshkosh Asylum for the insane
21 October 1884 Edward dies in Delafield, Waukesha, Wisconsin
23 October 1884 Edward is buried in Salem cemetery

Early years in the UK

Edward was born on 13th September 1802, in Trefonen near Oswestry, Shropshire, England but just over the border in Wales, the son of Edward Muckleston and his wife Alice (nee Roberts)[1]. He was baptised on 3rd October 1802 at St Oswald’s Church, Oswestry, Shropshire[2]. His father was a collier and the area where they lived was very much a mining community[3]. Edward was one of eight children (his father married twice) but all his siblings died in infancy.

Edward also became a collier in the Trevonen mines in Wales. His father died in 1831[4] and his mother in 1834[5]. His father was 77 when he died and being the only child, the onus was probably on Edward to take care of his parents as they aged.

It was at the age of 37, on 20th April 1838 before Edward married in Oswestry. His wife was Anne Edwards the daughter of John Edwards a farmer. In the register Edward was recorded as living in the parish of Llansantffraid which was near the village of Llanymynech in Wales, and he was still working as a collier[6]. As Edward signed the register it is likely that he was reasonably educated.

There first daughter was born later that year and was baptised Alice. Sadly Alice, was to die on 4th June 1842 but a second daughter born just 16 days later was also named Alice[7]. They also had a son at this point, Allen F Muckleston was born on 1st February 1840[8], John W Muckleston was born on 11th November 1844[9].

In 1846, 43-year-old Edward, his wife of 8 years decided to travel to the USA with their three young children[10].

Travelling to America

They travelled to America from Liverpool aboard the Carolina, for New York City.

The immigration documents for New York records the family Edward age 40, Ann age 40, Allen age 6, Alice age 4 and John age 2, and as being from Wales[11].

From there they travelled by river boat to Buffalo New York, via the Hudson River and Erie Canal. From Buffalo they travelled on a Great Lakes Ship along Lakes Erie, Huron and Michigan arriving on dry land once again at Racine Wisconsin. Continuing to travel westwards they finally settled at Waukesha Wisconsin which was a Welsh farming community[12].

Settling in America

The family spoke Welsh[13]. On 20th July 1848 their family was completed by the addition of their youngest son Edward Edwards Muckleston[14].

Edward turned his hand to farming and acquired a plot of land in Delafield Township, Waukesha, Wisconsin.


By 1848 he had 40 acres of farm land[15].

It would appear that Edward found a lovely spot to farm and built a nice homestead for his family. In 1991 descendants of Edward and Anne, Mel and Clar Forde, visited the farm and sent the following description back to the family:

"The farm is now owned by the University of Wisconsin-Waukesha. It is an immensely big place which now has two furnaces in the basement to heat it. Now the house is vacant without furnishings. To bring it up to modern codes would be extremely expensive. It even still has a copper bathtub. It is totally un-insulated and would take an enormous amount of improvement to make it liveable. While it is a novelty that could be made into something of historical significance it must also be recognised as being just a big old farmhouse. It has four bedrooms on the second floor but each one is at least twice the size of a modern bedroom. There is an attic that had some kind of little room in it and the height to the peak must have been at least 16 feet. The basement walls seem to have been mortared stone with a facing of cement put on them later on. There are two stairways going upstairs, one from the living room and one from the kitchen area. The shack must have been the hired hands domicile. The old farm would have been a developer’s delight as it is on a knoll with views down the valley."[16]

I now understand that this delightfully described old farmhouse no longer stands. The couple had clearly picked a lovely spot to settle.

Edward's Land Holding due South of Pewaukee Lake

Documents exist relating to Edwards Land Holdings[17].

Indexes are transcribed as follows

Land Records Document: Number 25582 Patentee Name: Muckleston Edward Accession Number: W12970_.496 State: Wisconsin Volume: 2970 Page: 496 Doc Number: 25582 Land Office: Milwaukee Aliquot Part Reference: NESW Section Number: 26 Township: 7 North Range: 18 East Meridian/Survey area: Fourth Principal Meridian. Act / Treaty Authorising Sale: Sale - Cash Entries Date Signed: July 1 1848 Acreage: 40

also as above with following changes:

Accession Number: W12980_.279 Volume: 2980 Page: 279 Document Number: 25867 Aliquot: SESW

Document showing Edward Edwards Muckleston now owns the Muckleston Farm

As can be seen from the above map, the youngest son Edward Edwards Muckleston was to take over his father’s farm.

The Civil War was to impact the family, insomuch that eldest son Allen enlisted in the Wisconsin Infantry on 22nd August 1862[18]. John was also to enlist but only served from March to August 1865[19]. Both fought on the Union side. Thankfully both returned unscathed.

By 1874 his sons Allen and John, having married sisters from the same farming community in the 1870s, had struck out on their own as farmers[20].

For some years Allen and John farmed together, John then moved to Seattle but was not particularly happy with city life and returned to Wisconsin for some years and ran a boarding house with his wife. He later returned to Washington State[21].

Younger son Edward remained at home and was to inherit his fathers farm. Edward junior did not marry until 1886, after his father’s death[22].All three sons did well as farmers winning many awards at county shows and playing their part as members of the church[23].

Although Edward first petitioned to become a US citizen on 5th April 1847 it was 16th April 1873 before the final step was taken[24]. The reason for the delay is not known.

Edward's Naturalisation Paperwork

After almost 39 years of marriage Edward was to sadly lose his wife Anne on 7th April 1877[25]. Daughter Alice had never married and in April 1884 she was taken by the Sheriff to Oshkosh Asylum for the insane where a few days later, on the 16th April, she dies[26].

For the last year of his life Edward alternates between living with his two eldest sons Allen and John and on 21st October 1884 age 82 he died[27]. On 23rd October he is buried in Salem Cemetery, Wales, Waukesha, Wisconsin[28].

Edward’s memorial stone also includes details of his wife and daughter.

Edward's Memorial with his wife's details on the front
The stone also shows daughter Alice's details

Edward’s tombstone states his year of birth as 1801, however the Oswestry Parish Registers confirm this as being in 1802[29].

Copy of Edward's baptism in 1802

As Edward and Anne had obviously prospered in their new life so did their many descendants who became noted lawyers, teachers and civil engineers as well as making their names in other areas such as athletics and aviation. They also played their part in the World Wars.


  1. St Oswald’s Parish Registers, Oswestry, England
  2. St Oswald’s Parish Registers, Oswestry, England
  4. Chapel of Trefonen burial records (Oswestry Parish)
  5. Chapel of Trefonen burial records (Oswestry Parish)
  6. St Oswald’s Parish Registers, Oswestry, England
  7. Civil Registration Birth and Death indexes 1837-1915
  8. Civil Registration Birth and Death indexes 1837-1915
  9. Civil Registration Birth and Death indexes 1837-1915
  10. Immigration Records for New York 1820-1850
  11. Immigration Records for New York 1820-1850
  12. Information from Keith Muckleston a great grandson of Edward
  13. Information from Keith Muckleston a great grandson of Edward
  14. Find a Grave
  15. Land Record Document 25582
  16. Letter from Mel and Clar Forde a descendant of Edward
  17. Land Record Document 25582
  18. Civil War Soldiers 1861-1865
  19. Civil War Soldiers 1861-1865
  20. Waukesha Freeman Newspaper 23rd April 1874 Land Sales J & A Muckleston purchase 60 acres from Amos Smith
  21. Information from Keith Muckleston a great grandson of Edward
  22. Information from Wes Ashford a great great grandson of Edward
  23. . Various entries in the Waukesha Freeman Newspaper see Wales to Wisconsin Book by Janet Mackleston
  24. Illinois, Northern District, Naturalisation Records. Vol 3 Page 264
  25. Find a Grave
  26. Waukesha Freeman Newspaper 18th April 1884
  27. Waukesha Freeman Newspaper 18th April 1884
  28. Salem Welsh Cemetery, Waukesha, Wisconsin, burial records
  29. St Oswald’s Parish Registers, Oswestry, England