Association Uncovers Family Roots

By Karl Robert Junkins; from JFA Newsletter no. 4, Summer 1991

Surely, as members, we all appreciate the goals of the Junkins Family Association. But, I wonder how many of us also owe a debt of gratitude to the Association for uncovering our family roots. I am one who does.

In an 1897 Wood County, Ohio publication, my great-grandfather, Thomas Junkins (1822-1903), is quoted as saying that his father, Samuel, was born 1794 "in the state of Maine of Scot and Irish parents." Samuel died in Fairview, Ohio (on the National Highway, Route 40) in 1929.

Probably because Samuel's young widow moved back to Pennsylvania, remarried, then moved again into Ohio, but to Wood County in the northwestern section, my roots beyond "Ohio's Samuel" were lost.

My questions, for many years, were: Where in Maine? How many years in Maine? Who was Scot? Who was Irish? Is Junkins maybe Scot-Irish? Under what circumstances did the first forefather come to America? When?

I confess, I was not smart enough to consult genealogical publications to investigate the matter, but was gullible enough to purchase a Junkins "book" from Halbert's.

You know how some people never learn. A few years later, I received a form letter from Alan Junkins, Aston, PA. My offspring warned me. My better judgment warned me. However, I also play the Ohio lottery, so I sent the ten dollars.

With the ten dollars, went all the information I had on my Junkins connection. JACKPOT! Alan not only informed me that Ohio's Samuel was the brother of his Thomas, but told me about the Alexander Davis history.

Not only was the family lost to us, but, it turned out, we in Ohio were lost to the family. Davis could not find Samuel's children. It was like finding and fitting together a huge two-piece puzzle. Thank you Alan.

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