Gary S. Collins's family

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  • ID: I112549580
  • Name: Richard COLLINS
  • Given Name: Richard
  • Surname: Collins
  • Sex: M
  • Birth: 1 May 1725 in Strabane?, Tyrone County, Ulster, Ireland
  • Death: 17 Jun 1808 in Collins Mills, Port Republic, (former) Gloucester County, New Jersey
  • Note:
    Collins Family (from "The Daily Union History of Atlantic City and County", John Hall, 1900, page 384):
    The founder of the Collins family in this country was one Richard Collins, M. D., the first resident physician in Gloucester County, as it was called at that time. He came as early as 1765 to the new world, from Ireland, where he was born, May 1, 1725. A large tract of land in Galloway township was purchased by him and improved, and has since been known as Collins Mills. It is located about one mile west of Smithville, in this county. Dr. Collins was married previous to coming to America, his one child by the first marriage being Elizabeth, who married, first, John Holmes, and second, Christopher Ludlam, both of Cape May County. Dr. Richard afterward married Sarah Griffith, of Pennsylvania, who bore him five children. Here in the wilderness Dr. Collins toiled, reared and educated his family while ministering to the physical needs of the people over a large tract of country, embracing what is now Atlantic County, and parts of surrounding counties. Physically Dr. Collins was a giant, and even though great age came upon him, his form was ever erect and active. He was a man of great intellectual as well as moral force and of positive character; so much so indeed as to incline to eccentricity in the opinion of his neighbors. Living, as he did, in the midst of Quakers, he adopted their mode of dress and speech, though he was a Roman Catholic when he arrived in America. Letters in the possession of some of his descendants prove, however, that the Doctor died in the Methodist faith. In a letter he wrote, "I have reared one son a Methodist, one a Quaker, and one a Universalist, but one of these days I'll take a short cut and beat them all to heaven."
    Not long before the Doctor's death he invited home all his accessible children and their families. Andrew Scull, Sr., a grand-child, then aged 10 years, said of him: "That he had provided immense quantities of bread and honey for the children, and he remembers him alternately laughing to see them make way with it and weeping because he probably should see their faces no more." Dr. Collins died in 1808, and was buried on his farm at Collins' Mills, where his tomb and those of this wife and some of their children may yet be seen.
    The children of Richard Collins and Sarah Griffiths were: 2. Matthew, b. May 7, 1764, d. September 29, 1851; m. (1) Judith Smith; (2) Sylvia Endicott Smith.
    3: John, b. November 1, 1769; d. August 22, 1845; m. Sarah Blackman, November 1793.
    4: Levi, b. September 20, 1772, d. March 24, 1813; m. Asenath Lake, August 16, 1801.
    5. Alice, b. August 27, 1776; d. November 12, 1833; m. Abel Scull.
    A daughter who died in infancy.
    [End of quote from Daily Union History; there is more information about descendants].

    "Sketches of Old Port Republic", Harriet S. Sander (Port Republic Tercentenary Committee, 1964), pages 26-27:
    "The Greatest Impact"
    Another early comer to these parts and the man to make the greatest imprint in this section of old Gloucester was Dr. Richard Collins who was born in Ireland on May 1st, 1725, received his degree from the University of Dublin, and came to this country in 1765. He purchased 35 acres of land about one mile north of the present Shore Road on the west side of Old Morss Mill road. He immediately started clearing the land, damming the stream and built a mill and his home. He was an indefatigable worker and immediately started practicing his profession. His bailiwick was from Somers Point to Tuckerton and the surrounding country which touched on these roads.
    He married Sarah Griffith of Pennsylvania, and she bore him five children all of whom made a place in the world. He was a giant of a man, straight, and tall and very active until old age.
    When the Revolutionary war came he eagerly offered his services to General Washington and was made a Surgeon General and served throughout the war. At the close of the war, returning he built a home on Swan Bay Road and lived there until he died in 1808. He brought the property where Micajah Smith's Homestead stood, and where later in our time Judge William French lived.
    He sleeps in the Old Collins burial ground on the land he purchased when first coming to Old Gloucester.
    His descendants are many and each generation has produced notable men and women active in civic and social affairs.
    In memorial [?] of a woman, a [great]granddaughter of this Dr. Richard Collins, Mrs. Anna Collins Fleming, the wife of the Rev. Dr. Fleming, we had the great fortune to have known her personally, charming, gentle woman, tall and stately, with a vast knowledge of the history of old Gloucester. ...

    According to "Sketches of Old Port Republic", by Harriet S. Sander, Richard Collins received a medical degree from the University of Dublin. Patty Luthy (email Jan 2004) claims that is unlikely because it was a protestant university to which catholics were not admitted. Strictly, even today there is no University of Dublin, but Trinity College. Possibly, Richard Collins attended medical school in Scotland or Europe, or attended Trinity College while masquerading as a protestant.

    Origin in Ireland of Richard Collins
    Patty Luthy makes a plausible case that he probably came from Strabane, Ulster Province, (Northern) Ireland. See her message on the Collins surname message board at

    Will of Richard Collins
    Doughty ancestry file, Ronald W. Cook , version of 2006 Nov 24:
    Note: will of male; 1807 Sep 01 NJA_COW File 2693H.
    Richard Collins of Galloway Twp., Gloucester Co., will of.
    Son, Matthew, all real estate south and southwest of main branch of my
    saw-mill stream from acid mill up to David Johnson; also lands west and
    southwest of said Johnson's; also marsh below Higbee's; also one large
    wagon; he to pay his son, Richard, L33; when 21. Son, Levi, remainder
    of real and personal estate; he paying other children $100. To son John
    Collins' son, Richard, 50. Daughter, Ann Doughty, $100.
    Executor: sons, Matthew and Levi Collins.
    Witness: Robert Leeds, Ann Leeds, Elisha Collins.
    1808 Jul 05 proved.
    1808 Jun 29 Inventory $959.44; by Samuel Sooy and Robert Leeds.

    From "Absegami: Annals of Eyren Haven and Atlantic City 1609-1904", A. M. Heston, 1904:
    Richard Collins left a wife in Ireland but lost contact with her. She was mother of a blind child by him.
    Came to America around 1763 with his only child (Elizabeth?).
    First doctor in Gloucester County, NJ.
    Born Roman Catholic, became Methodist.
    In America, had 3 sons and one daughter reaching adulthood, fifth child died young. One son was a Quaker.
    Buried in Collins family burying ground, which I (Gary Collins) saw in early 1960's,
    on site of Collins Mills, near Smithville and Port Republic, NJ. A description is by Linda Russel Lewis (c) 1999): From her description, the location is found to be close to lat= 35.4927, long= -74.48165, which can be mapped using a service such as
    Gravestone: Richard Collins born May 1, 1725 died June 17, 1808 aged 83 years
    Rebecca A. Woeltge, Dec 2003:
    Came from Tyrone County, Ulster Province; was a European trained doctor and private in the American Revolution Continental Troops. Died in Collins Mills, NJ. (Only source known for Tyrone County reference; uncorroborated and unable to contact Woeltge.)

    Early NJ Marriage Records (
    FHLC 0888702; Vol. C (1735 - 1797) [total of 778 bonds] #201-#250
    #249; Richard COLLINS and John SHAW, both of the County of Burlington...
    [bound to]... Francis BERNARD, Governor... 500 pounds... 27 Aug 1759. ...
    Richard COLLINS... obtained license of marriage for himself and for Sarah
    GRIFFITH, spinster... [w] S. BLACKWOOD
    Copyright (c) 1999 by Patricia m. Bergener (

    From (
    Sometime ago, I posted a query regarding John Collins, Methodist minister of Ohio in the early 1800's. Thanks to the generosity of others, I now have the following details, which I am posting for the benefit of others who may be connected.
    Generation No. 1
    1. RICHARD1 COLLINS was born April 1, 1725 in Co. Tyrone, Ireland, and died June 17, 1808 in Collins Mills, Gloucester Co., N. J.. He married SARAH GRIFFITHS. She was born July 16, 1735, and died January 12, 1801 in Collins Mills, Gloucester Co., N. J.
    Richard Collins is buried in the Collins Cemetery in Galloway Township, which was in Gloucester, but is now in Atlantic Co., N. J. His tombstone is now illegible but was transcribed earlier and is on record. The dates for his wife Sarah are also recorded from a tombstone transcription of the same source. Her last name is recorded in several places, albeit not on her tombstone. Richard Collins was educated as a physician in Europe prior to his immigration, and served in the Revolutionary war.
    I have no information about the first wife of Richard Collins, nor of any children, but since Alice was born before John, and Sarah Griffiths is known to be her mother, there seems no question she is also the mother of John. I have not been able to locate any solid information about her, although I did find one Internet source that claimed she was the daughter of John Griffiths and Ann Jones. This source did not provide any information about these people, though, such as dates or locations of birth, marriage or death.
    An extract of the will of Richard Collins is on file in New Jersey records.
    1807, Sept. 1. Collins, Richard, of Galloway Twp., Gloucester Co., will of. Son, Matthew, all real estate south and southwest of main branch of my saw-mill stream from said mill up to David Johnston's; also lands west and southwest of said Johnston's; also marsh below Higbee's , also one large wagon: he to play his son, Richard $33 when 21. Son, Levi, remainder of real and personal estate; he paying other children, $100. To son John Collins' son Richard, $50. Executors sons Matthew and Levi Collins. Wit: Robert Leeds, Ann Leeds, Elisha Collins. Proved July 5, 1808.
    1808, June 29. Inventory, $959.44, made by Samuel Sooy and Robert Leeds. File 2693H.
    Children of Richard Collins and Sarah Griffith are:
    2. i. JOHN2 COLLINS, b. November 1, 1769, Gloucester Co., N. J.; d. August 22, 1845, Maysville, Mason Co., Ky..
    ii. ALICE COLLINS., b. August 27, 1766, Gloucester Co., N. J.; d. 1833; m. ABEL SCULL. He was born 1760 in Gloucester Co., N. J., and died 1809, Gloucester Co., N. J.
    Generation No. 2
    2. JOHN2 COLLINS (RICHARD1) was born November 1, 1769 in Gloucester Co., N. J., and died August 22, 1845 in Maysville, Mason Co., Ky.. He married SARAH BLACKMAN 1793 in Gloucester Co., N. J., daughter of David Blackman and Mary Clark. (See Descendants of Andrew Blackman)
    The name of Alice Collins' father is from the Denny Genealogy, which notes that John was "an early Methodist circuit rider." It does not, however, say where or when.
    �The Methodist Episcopal denomination was the pioneer religious organization in Paxton Township. As early as 1800, itinerant ministers of that sect held religious services in the settlers' cabins, and invaded the schoolhouses for the same purpose, as soon as they were established. In 1818, John Mick and John Collins, two of the early ministers in the community, established a church organization in Bainbridge� In the early days, the church at Bainbridge was one of twenty-three appointments on a territory of some thirty square miles, embraced within the Hillsboro circuit. The minister was required to make the rounds in twenty days, and preach twenty nine times. Fortunately, he did not have to prepare a sermon for each appointment, but could--if he would--use the same sermon, an advantage which the stationed preacher does not enjoy.�
    This work also goes on to say that Bainbridge �was scarcely a business center, with but three families living in it, though there were successful business enterprises located near by: Massie's mills, distillery, and furnace were located two miles to the westward.� With this clue, I sought evidence of John Collins in Ross and Highland Counties, but without success. In response to a Rootsweb message board, John Emmitt provided the following report, based upon a biography of John Collins he had found in a library in New Jersey.
    The Rev. John Collins was born in Gloucester County, New Jersey, Nov.1st 1769 to Quaker parents.. At an early age he became interested in religion. When he was a young man he went to Charleston to study religion, where he stayed one year. He returned to New Jersey in 1793 where he married Sarah Blackman. John was afflicted by a sickness that brought him to the verge of death in July 1794. He sought and found religion in October of that year, and soon became an active member of the Methodist Church. It wasn�t long before he became a preacher in this faith. He had few equals in the pulpit. In the year 1803 Rev. Collins settled with his family on a farm in Clermont Co. Ohio, on the East Fork of the little Miami River near Elklick Rd., I might add that many present day Clermont County people are descended from this family. Some of his children were Wesley, Sarah, Mary, Belinda, Elvaner, Richard, Elizabeth, Alice & Electra. Wesley and Sarah died in childhood. Richard married Mary Ann Johnson 1 Mar. 1838, Elizabeth married Collins Bredwell 2 Mar. 1835 and 2nd L.D. Bredwell 18 Mar. 1841, Electra married Dr.George Bragdon and 2nd Col. William Thomas.
    In the year 1805 John built a 2 story stone house on his Elklick property. He held some of his first Methodist meetings here. This house was said to be the oldest stone house in Ohio, before it was bulldozed by the U.S. Corps of Engineers in 1972 to make way for Harsha Lake in the East Fork State Park.
    John�s son Richard became a very successful lawyer and was said by some to be the best in all of Ohio. He practiced in Hillsboro, but moved back to Clermont County in 1828 to practice in Batavia and started a mansion at Elklick site of 37 rooms that was finished by 1830. This was said to be the show place of Clermont County. It also was a victim of the Harsha Lake in 1972.
    Rev. John Collins preached the first Methodist sermon that was ever preached in Cincinnati. He soon organized the first Methodist Church in Cincinnati, Wesley Chapel now defunct. He also organized churches in Dayton, Chillicothe, Lebanon and not the least of them was the Collins Chapel in Clermont Co. now called Old Bethel Methodist Church. This church is in the East Fork State Park just 3/4 mile north of Bantam OH, this Church has been declared a historic place, and is maintained by the Historical Society. A cemetery surrounds this building. Many early Clermont Countians are buried there including Rev. John Collins. Meetings are held there occasionally even today in the year 2000.
    The appearance of Rev. John Collins never failed to make the most favorable impression. His dress was neat and always plain and Quaker-like. His voice was soft and silvery, and had a soothing sympathetic way with his followers. He organized many Church Camps and followed these Church circuits: New Jersey, and in Ohio, New Richmond, Dayton, Scioto, White Oak, Miami, Deer Creek, Union and Cincinnati at various times in his career.
    Rev. John Collins had a great ministry, his influence was felt by thousands of people, not only as Pastor of Old Bethel Methodist Church at Bantam in Clermont County and at Wesley Chapel in downtown Cincinnati, and by the thousands that he came in contact during his career.
    After several years of poor health he departed this world the 22 Aug. 1845 at the home of his son Richard in Maysville, Kentucky. His tombstone at Old Bethel Cemetery reads �Rev. John Collins, Minister of the M.E. Church died Aug 22 1845 aged 75 years, 9 months, 22 days�
    There is no evidence that either Richard or John Collins were ever Quakers.
    A great deal of additional information has been collected by Hermon B. Fagley, who grew up as a neighbor of John Emmitt in Clermont Co., Ohio. (Mr. Emmitt told me he had celebrated his 85th birthday in April 2002.) He quotes an unsigned history of Old Bethel Church written April 19, 1991.
    Rev. John Collins came here from NJ in the year 1803 and became the owner of a large tract of land on the east fork of the Little Miami River. In 1804 he donated enough ground on which to build a church, and one made of logs from the surrounding forest, and called "Collins Meeting House" was, in a few months, dedicated by him. Other churches were established in adjacent neighborhoods and ere long there was an extensive circuit embracing those churches and called "Collins Circuit" of which Rev. John Collins was the first pastor. Every two weeks, sometimes on Sabbath, sometimes on Wednesday, there was preaching in Collins Meeting House. Prayer and class meetings were held regularly. Most of the early settlers assembled at these services and respectfully and attentively heard the Word. The little church was blessed with revivals of great power, and many true and steadfast members were added to it. After a few years, its members had so increased that they were enabled to substitute a frame church for the log church in which they had been worshipping. While it was in course of erection, Mrs. Collins, wife of Rev. John Collins brought victuals to the carpenters and other workmen, and was so happy that they could hear her singing as she came and went through the woods. The frame church with its high enclosed pulpit an galleries around three sides was dedicated in 1818.
    John Collins, b. November 1, 1769, was the second son of the pioneer, Dr. Richard Collins, and may be rightly claimed as one of the founders of Methodism in America. Converted at Smithville, this county, in 1794, he was soon licensed as a local preacher and traveled extensively through a large part of West Jersey. His wife was Sarah Blackman, daughter of David Blackman, of English Creek. She was a most loyal and efficient helpmeet in his Christian labors. In 1803 he removed to Ohio with his family, and took up an extensive tract of land in Clermont County.
    Mr. Collins preached the first Methodist sermon in Cincinnati in 1804 and joined the traveling connection in 1807. He established the first society in Dayton, 1808, and was made Presiding Elder in 1819. It is said by various historians of the church that the Methodists had not in the early days a more successful preacher than Mr. Collins. The following is a description of him, given by an eye-witness:
    "The occasion was a quarterly meeting in Ohio. The meeting was opened by a young man who, I was informed, had been recently initiated into the ministry. He was followed by an old man dressed in linsey woolsey. He was tall and thin; his head was whitened by the frost of years; his countenance was one that men love to look upon; there was nothing remarkable or peculiar in his features; his forehead was high and a little projecting; his eyes small and sunken; his nose thin and aquiline, the chin rather long. But he had an expression of countenance that is not easily forgotten. As he arose every eye was riveted on him, and such was the silence of the large assembly that the softest whisper might have been heard. I felt that I was in the presence of no ordinary man. He read the parable of the 'Prodigal Son,' and so preached and illustrated the text that the whole assembly burst into an involuntary gush of tears, such were his oratorical powers."
    After being in the west for a short time, Rev. Mr. Collins became worried over the spiritual welfare of his father, the old Doctor, who had tried the Quaker religion after renouncing Catholicism, so he returned to the old homestead at Collins' Mills on a religious mission. Some days after his return his father said to him: "John, we are all glad to see thee, but I don't like thy religion." This was unexpected and greatly depressed John. After some reflection he resolved to spend the whole of the ensuing night in prayer for his father.
    Accordingly, at nightfall, after supper, he retired to the barn, that he might not be interrupted. Here he engaged in fervent prayer until near 10 o'clock. Some one knocked at the barn door, but he made no answer. In a short time another messenger came and opening the door discovered him. This messenger was his sister, who had experienced religion and who informed him that he had been sought for in his room, at his brother's nearby, and at other places, and that he was supposed to be in the barn. She told him their father was suffering the greatest mental agony and wished to see him. With joyful heart Mr. Collins hurried to the room of his father and, embracing him, wept and prayed with him. The struggle continued until near daylight, when deliverance came. His father was filled with peace and joy and triumph." Life of John Collins. This briefly is a part of the life of this great man who, his contemporaries claim, was the greatest apostle of Methodism through the Northwestern Territory. A sketch of his life was published by the Western Book Concern in 1849; to this the writer is indebted, and also to Mrs. Anna Collins Fleming, who is the possessor of many of the letters and private papers of John Collins.
    He died in 1845, at the age of 76. A marble shaft marks his resting place in the little churchyard at Bethel, near the road to Ripley, Ohio. The children of John Collins and Sarah Blackman were four daughters and three sons, David, Wesley, and Richard.
    John Collins was listed as a taxpayer in Clermont Co., Ohio in 1810 and his obituary, published by the Ohio Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church reported that he was born in New Jersey in 1769 and died August 21, 1845.
    Children of John Collins and Sarah Blackman are:
    3. i. ALICE3 COLLINS, b. Abt 1809, Clermont Co., Ohio; d. 1876, Ross Co., Ohio.
    vii. WESLEY COLLINS, b. 1798, Gloucester Co., N. J.; d. 1807, Clermont Co., Ohio.
    Generation No. 3
    3. ALICE3 COLLINS (JOHN2, RICHARD1) was born about 1809 in Clermont Co., Ohio, and died 1876 in Ross Co., Ohio. She married NATHANIEL MASSIE III February 13, 1828 in Ross Co., Ohio, son of Nathaniel Massie and Susan Meade. (See Descendants of Peter Massie and Descendants of Andrew Meade.)
    �Allis� Collins is listed as the wife of Nathaniel Massie in Chillicothe, Ross Co., Ohio 1850 census as �age 42� born in Ohio. Thus she was �about 1807.� The marriage date is confirmed in Ross County records.
    Children of Alice Collins and Nathaniel Massie are:
    i. JOHN COLLINS4 MASSIE, b. November 23, 1828, Ross Co., Ohio; d. March 30, 1878, Holt Co., Mo.; m. SUSAN JOHNSON, 1848, Highland Co., Ohio.
    ii. MARY MASSIE, b. Abt November 1831.
    iii. BELINDA MASSIE, b. Abt 1833.
    iv. SUSAN MASSIE, b. Abt 1835.
    v. NATHANIEL MASSIE, b. Abt 1837.
    vi. SARAH MASSIE, b. Abt 1839.
    vii. WILLIAM MASSIE, b. Abt 1841.
    viii. LEORNER MASSIE, b. Abt 1843.
    ix. HENRY MASSIE, b. Abt 1845.
    x. ALICE MASSIE, b. Abt 1849.
    (references upon request.)

    A large list of descendants of Richard Collins can be found in "The Daily Union History of Atlantic City and County", John F. Hall -- Atlantic City, N.J., 1900.

    Sturman/Ferguson Family Tree, Carol Sturman , accessed 23 Feb 2007:
    Name: Richard COLLINS
    Birth: 1 May 1725 in Tyrone County, Ireland
    Death: 18 Jun 1808 in (Gloucester Co), New Jersey
    Marriage 1 Sarah GRIFFITHS b: 16 Jul 1735
    1. Has Children Ann COLLINS birth b: 29 May 1760

    Father: Male Pedigree back to NIALL OF THE NINE HOSTAGES b: circa Fifth century AD in Northwestern Ireland

    Marriage 1 Sarah GRIFFITH b: 16 Jul 1735 in Richland Twp., Bucks Co., PA
    • Married: 27 Aug 1759 in Collins Mills, Gloucester, NJ
    1. Has Children Levi COLLINS b: 20 Sep 1772 in Collins Mills, Galloway Twp., Atlantic Co.
    2. Has Children John COLLINS b: 1 Nov 1769 in Gloucester Co., New Jersey
    3. Has Children Mathew COLLINS b: 7 May 1764 in prob. Gloucester Co., New Jersey
    4. Has Children Alice COLLINS b: 27 Aug 1766 (or maybe 1772, 1776) in Collins Mills, Gloucester Co., NJ
    5. Has Children Ann COLLINS b: 29 May 1760 in prob New Jersey

    Marriage 2 First wife in Ireland UNKNOWN
    • Married: in Ireland
    1. Has No Children Elizabeth NOT A COLLINS b: est 1750 in Ireland?

    Marriage 3 Mary MADISON(?)
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