Hugh Linn (1753)

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Hugh Linn
Born 1753[1]
Newry, County Down, Northern Ireland[2]
Died Jan. 1, 1815[3]
Concord, Pennsylvania, USA[4]
Resting place Concord Methodist Episcopal Church Cemetery[5][6], Concord, Pennsylvania (also known as Concord Union Cemetery?[7])
Residence Concord, Pennsylvania (1784–1815) «Did not recognize date. Try slightly modifying the date in the first parameter.–Did not recognize date. Try slightly modifying the date in the first parameter.»"Marriage: Concord, Pennsylvania to Hugh Linn (1753)" Location: (linkback:[8]
Spouse Sarah Widney (m. 1777) «Did not recognize date. Try slightly modifying the date in the first parameter.»"Marriage: Sarah Widney to Hugh Linn (1753)" Location: (linkback:[9]
Children John Linn (19 Mar 1778 - 6 Dec 1845)
William Linn (1780-?)
Mary Linn (1782-1826)
Hugh Linn II (10 May 1785 - 3 Apr 1870)
Sarah Linn (1788-1812)
Margaret Linn (7 Mar 1790 - 13 Dec 1870)
James Linn (1792-1848)
Jane Linn (1795 - 7 April 1842)
Nancy Linn (1801-1868)[10][11]
Relatives Rebecca Lee Linn (Sister)[12]
James Widney (1753) (Brother-in-law)
See map of Hugh Linn (1753)'s descendents and ancestors


The Clan Linn in the Twentieth Century Entry

"Hugh Linn (h), who was born in 1753, was the first of our clan to set foot on the shores of this continent. Hugh lived in or near Newry, County Down, Ireland at least as early as the 1770s. In 1777 he married Sarah Widney, an Irish girl of Dutch descent whose family owned an estate in County Tyrone. Countless troubles in Ireland in the late eighteenth century--economic, political and religious--forced many small farmers and laborers to seek a fresh start in the newly colonized wilderness far across the Atlantic. The journey was long, the future uncertain, but events in Ireland indicated that life was not going to improve there in the near future, either

"In the eleventh year of their marriage [1788] the Linns' little family boarded ship in Londonberry on a journey with no opportunity available to turn back. Due to the uncertaint of the undertaking, Hugh and Sarah left their second-born son, William, in Ireland in the care of an aunt. William was the remaining "seed" should the worst befall the family of the pilgrim, Hugh. Several of William's descendants did, indeed, follow Hugh and Sarah some fifty years later.[13]"

Time in America

"In 1788, Hugh and Sarah brought three small children to Franklin County, Pennsylvania. There, Hugh farmed and helped to found the village of Concord in Fannett Township. Since there was as yet no established church in the area, he opened his home to people far and near for worship, prayer, and Bible reading. His cabin became known to those in the surrounding countryside as Immanuel, meaning "God with us." Hugh Linn and his family lived a rugged, pioneer life sustained by faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. As related by his son Hugh Linn II, the family closed each day together with the evening meal and conversation, followed by scripture reading and prayer."[14]

(Note: The three immigrant children would have been John Linn (b. 1778), Mary Linn (b.1782), and Hugh Linn II (b. 1785). William Linn (b. 1780) was left behind, and Sarah Linn (1788-1812) apparently was born later in 1788 after arrival in America.)

Excerpt from History of Franklin County, Pennsylvania[15]

John Linn, retired, P. O. Concord, is a grandson of Hugh Linn, a native of Ireland, who came to this country about 1790, and located in Horse Valley, on the edge of Perry County, where he carried on farming and died. His wife, Sarah, was a sister of James Widney, an Irishman, and one of the early settlers of Path Valley; he settled in the Valley near Concord, of which town he was the founder; he was a Wesleyan Methodist and the pioneer of Methodism in the Vally; a man of enterprise, he bore a conspicuous part in the early history of the township.

Hugh Linn was born in Ireland, May 10, 1785, the third son of Hugh and Ann (Widney) Linn, latter a daughter of James Widney, the pioneer. Mrs. Ann Linn was born in Path Valley, December 22, 1785. Hugh Linn, Jr., was a stonemason, which trade he followed for a number of years, and subsequently purchased the Steward farm, where he lived fifty years. In 1865 he went to his daughter in Ogle County, Ill., where he died suddenly, April 3, 1870; he joined the Methodist Episcopal Church when fifteen years of age, and during his life was an active church worker; he served as class leader and steward. He was a Democrat until the civil war, when he united with the Republican party.

He reared following named children: James, a miller by trade, who lived and died in Concord; Sarah, wife of Samuel Henry, who moved to Illinois; Mary, married to Samuel Booker, who located in Illinois; Jane, married to Andrew J. Taylor, who moved to Pennsylvania; John; Margaret, wife of A. Lougridge, who moved to Illinois; Hugh, who served in the Mexican war, and died, unmarried, from disease contracted in the service; Alexander, who served in the civil war as assistant surgeon in Newton Hamilton, Mifflin County; Arabella, married to William Bloom, and located in Martinsburg, Blair County; and Eleanor, who married to William Typer, who located in Ogle County, Ill.

John, our subject, is the sole survivor of the family in this county. He was born near Concord, April 13, 1820, worked on the farm until arriving at maturity, and after nine months' residence in Ohio and Kentucky, he went to Washington County, Md., where he learned the marble cutter's trade, which he followed for seven years. In 1851 he returned to the farm and married Margaret J. Hays, born in Path Valley, a daughter of Richard and Elizabeth (Cunningham) Hays, the latter a daughter of William Cunningham. In 1863 he entered the One Hundred Sixty-eighth Regiment Pennsylvania Infantry, and served eleven months, returned home and resumed farming. In February, 1865, he was drafted but procured a substitute.

He sold his farm shortly after the war, built property and has since lived retired. He is a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church. In politics he was a Republican, now a Prohibitionist. Mrs. Linn has been an invalid for eighteen years with chronic rheumatism. Mr. Linn's father, Hugh, was drafted in the war of 1812, but his brother James took his place.

Locating Hugh's Farm

The Clan Linn books describes the Linn's Pennsylvania farm as being just north of Concord, PA in Huntingdon County, along the Tuscarora Creek:

One look more and we part forever. Near us is the mansion built by James Widney, and before us, across the Tuscarora Creek, are the lands once tilled by Hugh Linn 2d, all hallowed to their posterity. Behind us is, the "Round Top," one of the ranges of the beautiful Blue Mountains; to our right is "The Knob," a thousand feet above us, guarding, sentinel like, the place on which we stand; in front is the Tuscacora Mountain, all overloking the valley; while nestled in the vale at our feet, is the little village of Concord, the site of so many of our early family activities.[16]

This location is approximately: 40°15'24.40"N, 77°42'1.86"W

Searching for Hugh's Family


  • User:annlynn9 (Loretta Lynn) has identified that it is possible, though unproven, that Hugh Linn was descended from the Lords of Lynn, who owned the Barony of Lynn in Dalry, Ayrshire, Scotland. His lineal ancestor could have been either David or John Linn (1720) (wife: Jane Patterson (1723)), both of whom were 1616 Scots settlers in County Tyrone, Ulster, Ireland.
    • Note from User:annlynn9: I also believe that Hugh may have been born in County Tyrone, in part because Dr. Linn related that the Widneys (Sarah Widney being Hugh's wife) owned an estate in County Tyrone. Assuming Dr. Linn's account to be true, it does seem more likely that Hugh came from County Tyrone and that he and Sarah only settled near Newry after marrying. On the other hand, recent research has failed to turn up any evidence whatsoever of the Widneys ever having a presence in Tyrone. To the contrary, they are found predominantly in County Monaghan but also in Armagh, Down, Antrim, and even Cavan - but never in Tyrone. See: In Search of Colonel Widney And the Family in Ireland Through the End of the Eighteenth Century. However, if the 1766 religious return linked below is our Hugh Linn, that would place him in County Tyrone 11 years prior to his marriage to Sarah Widney.
    • Note from User:annlynn9: John Linn and Jane Patterson emigrated to Virginia some years before our Hugh Linn was born in Ireland, and Hugh had no connection whatsoever to Virginia but lived continuously in Concord, Pennsylvania from his immigration till his death.


  • Based on Dr. Linn's account, Hugh's son William was left in Ireland with an aunt named Rebecca Lee. Hugh's wife's siblings are known, and do not include a Rebecca. This suggests Hugh had a sister named Rebecca Lee.

Historical Records

  • The 1790 Pennsylvania Census for Fannet Township, Franklin County includes a Hugh Lin (one "n"), on the page after James Widney. Hugh's household includes 6 people, all white: 2 females, 1 male 16 years or older, 3 males under 16 years old. Assuming William (b. 1780) had been left in Ireland, the Linn household should have had 6 people but in a different configuration: 1 older male (Hugh), two younger males (John Linn, b 1778; Hugh Linn II, b. 1785), and three females (Sarah (Widney) Linn; Mary Linn, b. 1782; Sarah Linn, b. 1788)
  • The 1800 Pennsylvania Census for Fannet Township, Franklin County does NOT include Hugh, or any other Linns. (See also: Ancestry's version of the census, which contains the whole county. There is a possible match in Hamilton, Franklin, PA in the 1800 Federal Census however, in a household with 9 people.
  • A Hugh Linn is listed in the 1814 Franklin County Census in Fannett Township, as a mason.
  • "Hugh Linn Sr" (in addition to "Hugh Linn Jr") is listed as a mason in the 1835 PA Census for Franklin County
  • USGenWeb Archives biography

False positives (other individuals named Hugh Linn):


Hugh linn gravestone.jpeg


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