John Hastings, Sr.
  b: ~1760 - Ireland
  d: 6/Dec/1840 - Harrison Co., OH - bur: Rankin Cem.

Father: ***** Hastings
Mother: *****

Spouse: Jane ***** - b: 1764 - Ireland
  d: 1855 - bur: Restland Cem., Mendota, La Salle Co., IL
  m: ~1788 - Ireland

Child-1: William
          2: Mary - b: 13/Sep/1792 - Ireland
                         d: 13/Oct/1836 - bur: Rankin Cem., Harrison Co., OH
                        m: ***** Sproul
          3: Anne
          4: James
          5: John, Jr.

Biographical Details:

According to published sources and longstanding family tradition, John Hastings, Sr., was probably born in County Fermanagh, Ireland, but this has not been definitively proven.  The names of his parents remain unknown.  Within this context, it seems likely that John, Sr., married his wife, Jane, sometime between 1785 and 1790.  Her maiden name is not known, but it is known that they were married in Ireland, again, probably in County Fermanagh.  Apparently, Jane Hastings was still living at the time of the census in 1850 and was listed in the population schedule as resident in the household of her grandson, James Hastings.  Her age was stated as eighty-six years, which implies that she was born about 1764.  Concomitantly, at the time of his death, John Hastings, Sr., was said to have been seventy-two years old, which implies that he was born about the year 1768.1  Alternatively, other sources assert that he was eighty and, thus, born about 1760.  Within the usual customs of the time, the earlier date seems more likely.  No listing for Jane Hastings has yet been found in the population schedule of 1860, which suggests that she must have died during the 1850's, probably before 1854 since much of the extended Hastings family left Ohio and moved to Illinois at about this time.  Of course, stated ages given in census records and published histories are often inaccurate, but in any case these imply birth dates that seem plausible.

According to the same published sources, John, Sr., and Jane Hastings were the parents of five surviving children, all born in Ireland.  It is probable, considering conditions of the time, that there were additional children who died young, but this remains speculative.  The Hastings family, including John, Sr., and Jane as well as three of their sons and two daughters, immigrated to the United States about 1820 and settled in Athens Township of Harrison County, Ohio, near the town of Cadiz.  In addition, their son, William, had apparently married previously in Ireland and was accompanied to America by at least one son.  The year that the family immigrated has been stated as 1822 in one published source and 1819 in another.  However, the household of John Hastings was not listed in the 1820 US Census for Harrison County, which is consistent with the later date.  Even so, there is circumstantial evidence that John's two brothers, James and Thomas, may have immigrated prior to 1820, so it is possible that the family was living elsewhere, perhaps, with or near the household of one of the brothers.  Alternatively, it has been asserted that all three of the Hastings brothers and their families immigrated at the same time.  Therefore, with present evidence it is not possible to resolve the chronology definitively; however, it seems certain that the extended Hastings family immigrated from Ireland to the United States near the end of  the second or the beginning of the third decade of the nineteenth century.  Two households listed under the name of John Hastings appeared in the population schedule of the 1830 US Census for Harrison County, Ohio, and can be identified with reasonable confidence as those of John Hastings, Sr., and his son John, Jr.  In the case of the former, the household consisted of four individuals, viz., an elderly male and female of between sixty and seventy years of age, a middle aged adult male between forty and fifty years, and a young male between ten and fifteen.  Of course, the older couple was almost certainly, John, Sr., and Jane Hastings and the other two individuals were probably their son, William, and his son, James.  Furthermore, with the addition of an unidentified female adolescent (possibly a granddaughter) of between fifteen and twenty years of age, these same individuals were apparently still living together in Athens Township when the census was taken again in 1840.  In passing, it should be noted that in the 1840 population schedule the age of the oldest male, presumably John Hastings, Sr., was given as between eighty and ninety years.  (Clearly, since John, Sr., died this same year, the census record is inconsistent with the published assertion of his age as seventy-two at the time of his death.)  Evidently, John Hastings, Sr., was a successful farmer and had amassed at least two hundred and ninety-four acres in Athens and Moorefield Townships by the time of his death.  There is also evidence that he bought and sold other parcels of land as well.  According to his will, he was living on a farm of one hundred and four acres located in the Northeast quarter of Section Thirty in Township Nine of Range Five, which corresponds to a location in Athens Township about ten miles southwest of the town of Cadiz.2  This land parcel was part of the First Congressional Survey begun in 1786 under the authority of the Land Ordinance of 1785.  The survey was completed in 1802 and defined seven ranges numbered sequentially westward from the western boundary of Pennsylvania. Physically, this area of Harrison County is quite hilly with elevations ranging from just under one thousand to above twelve hundred feet.  Moreover, in the early nineteenth century it would have been covered with heavy forest which would have had to have been cleared away before any crops could be planted.  Subsequently, the area has been heavily strip mined for coal, but has remained quite rural in character down to the present day.  John Hastings, Sr., made his last will and testament on December 24, 1839.  It is reported that he subsequently died on December 6, 1840, and that his will was entered into probate the following day.  Concomitantly, according to a published survey, John Hastings, Sr., was buried in the Rankin Cemetery, which lies about a half a mile west of the location of his farm in Athens Township.3  Furthermore, in his will, John Hastings, Sr., names four of his children, William, James, John, and Anne, and in addition, he also mentions his grandson, James, who is specifically identified as the son of William.  Moreover, the context and manner of the bequests seems consistent with the composition of the household presumed from the census records.  Indeed, it would seem to imply the existence of a close family relationship, which appears consistent with the subsequent history of the descendants of John, Sr., and Jane Hastings.

Source Notes and Citations:
1a. U. J. Hoffman, History of La Salle County, Illinois, The S. J. Clarke Pub. Co., Chicago, IL, 1906: pg. 979.  Exerpted from a short biographical sketch of Samuel Hastings:
     "The family is of English descent on his father's side, although John Hastings, one of the ancestors of our subject, was a native of Ireland and became the founder of the family in the new world.  Crossing the Atlantic to the United States he took up his abode in Harrison county, Ohio, in 1822 and there followed the occupation of farming, which had been his life work in his native country.  He died when about seventy-two years of age.  His brothers, Thomas and James, accompanied him to America, the former settling near Washington, Pennsylvania, while the latter became a resident of Jefferson county, Ohio."

b. Anonymous, Biographical and Genealogical Record of La Salle County Illinois, The Lewis Pub. Co., Chicago, IL, 1900: pg. 472.  Exerpted from a short biographical sketch of Samuel Hastings:
     "Samuel Hastings ... traces his ancestry back to John Hastings, who was a native of Ireland, but of English descent.  He came to the United States, locating in Harrison county, in 1822 and there continued his accustomed vocation of farming.  His death occured when he was about seventy-two years of age.  His brothers, Thomas and James, accompanied him to this country, the former settling near Washington, Pennsylvania, while the latter became a resident of Jefferson county, Ohio."
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2. I John Hastings Senior of the County of Harrison, State of Ohio being of sound and disposing mind and memory, do make and publish this my last will and Testament in manner and form following, that is to say.
     First:  I give devise and bequeath to my son William and his heirs the tract of land containing one hundred and four acres more or less which I own in the North east quarter of Section No. 30 Township 9, and Range 5, in the Steubenville district, being the farm on which I now dwell.
     2nd  I give devise and bequeath to my wife Jane Hastings the South East quarter of Section No. 25, Township 11, and Range 6, in said County, to have and to hold during her natural lifetime and at her decease it shall fall to my sons James, and John Hastings, in consideration and consequence of which, my son James Hastings, shall pay Jane Black daughter of Anne Carrathers the sum of one hundred dollars, and my son John Hastings shall pay Sarah Ann Carrathers my grand daughter the sum of fifty dollars two years after the decease of my wife Jane Hastings.  I also bequeath to my wife Jane Hastings, one third of all my personal property during her natural lifetime, with liberty peacably to remain in her own house where she now resides.
     3d  I give devise and bequeath to my grand son James Hastings, son of William Hastings and to his heirs, the tract of land which I own containing thirty Acres in the Southeast quarter of said section No 30, being the same that I purchased from my son James.  I also leave unto my grand son James Hastings one third of all my personal property.  The remaining third of my personal property I bequeath to my son William Hastings.
     5th  And lastly I constitute and appoint my sons William and John Hastings, the Executors of this my last will and Testament truly revoking all other and former wills by me made.  /s/John Hastings (seal)
     Signed sealed published and declared in the presence of us who have herunto subscribed our names this twenty fourth day of December one thousand eight hundred and thirty nine  /s/Adam Dickerson  /s/John Dickerson  /s/Benjamin F. Gudgeon  (probated: 7 Dec 1840, Bk. B, Harrison Co., OH, pgs. unk.)
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3. Meredith DeBuse, "Burials in Rankin Graveyard Harrison County, Ohio (Those Born Before 1830)", unpublished.
     "John Hastings, d. Dec. 6, 1840; 80y."
     "Mary Sproul, dau of John and Jane Hastings, d. Oct. 13, 1836; 44y. 1m."  (Harrison County OHGenWeb Archives, 2006.)
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Additional Citations:

4. 1830 US Census Population Schedule for Harrison County, Ohio, National Archives, Washington DC:  pg. 147, (microfilm: roll M19_133; img. 298).

5. 1840 US Census Population Schedule for Harrison County, Ohio, National Archives, Washington DC:  pg. 121, (microfilm: roll M704_402; img. 28).

6. Charles Augustus Hanna, Historical Collection of Harrison County, in the State of Ohio, privately published, New York, NY, 1900: pg. 422, wills, pg. 370.  (Reprint available from Genealogical Publishing Co., 1001 N. Calvert St., Baltimore, MD, 21202-3897)  (Saundra Gibb; database - :993466;, 2001.)

7. Rankin Cemetery, Harrison County, Ohio (, continuously updated).

8. Melba Hastings, "Hastings Family Genealogical Charts and Family Group Sheets", 1970, unpublished.

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