Edward Coyan IS our immigrant ancestor

I (and several others) have spent many years searching for answers to many questions about our Coyan ancestors. But the answer to the most VITAL questions of "who, when and where" did our Coyan immigrant ancestor come to America had eluded us all - until now.

I had previously given my opinion about the "who and when", and here regarding the "where" based on reasonable assumptions I came to after extensive research.  As it turns out, I had the "who and when" pretty well nailed down. I'm confident of the "where" also, and I'll continue to pursue that this summer when I travel to Maryland and eastern Pennsylvania.

On April 10, 2001, I received some genealogy information in the mail from Karl Hilbert, who just a week prior had shared with me the first documented picture known of any of the grandchildren of Edward and Sarah Coyan. Little did Karl know that when he sent me the obituary shown below for William Theaker Coyan - the youngest son of Edward and Sarah - that it would contain a small bit of information that would solve our Coyan family's greatest question! And to think I nearly declined his offer to send it, since I thought I already HAD the obituary for William T. Coyan!!

As it turned out, there was ANOTHER obituary for William T. Coyan that appeared in August, 1891, in the McKeesport, Pennsylvania Daily Times newspaper the day after the one for which I already had a copy of (thanks to Joy Coyan) - and this "new" one contained one additional, incredible bit of information. Study this and see if you pick up on it....

Yeah, I know, it's hard to read...So, are ya still in "suspense"....Try this view!

And so we have it. THE ANSWER that had eluded us all until now. Edward Coyan, our now CONFIRMED immigrant ancestor (and my 5th great-grandfather) was born, in all probability, between 1745-1755. From this obituary, we now know that it was HE who came from Northern Ireland "at the age of 18". So using simple math, when can now safely assume that Edward entered America ca. 1763-1773! This timeframe is consistent with my long-held belief that Edward was part of the last - and largest - "wave" of Scotch-Irish immigrants to enter this country in the years leading up to the beginning of the American Revolution. And boy, where the British ever sorry to see the "rebellious bastards" come...

One point not to be lost here is that it is very possible that Edward came to America as a young man with his PARENTS, so that will definitely be in the back of my mind when I travel to the east coast this spring in search of more information. And what about Edward's wife? Well, that's an even bigger mystery still to be solved. "Sarah" (maiden name unknown at present) is confirmed to be the mother of at least 3 of the children of Edward  - including my 4th great-grandfather Hugh - but has not been confirmed to be the mother of William T. Coyan, though I suspect that she is....

Once again, my thanks go out to Karl Hilbert who was so willing to exchange family information with me! So, my Coyan "cousins", what might YOU sitting on in the way of family history stuff that we could ALL be enriched by, if you'd take the time to share with those who care! We would all be grateful to you......After all, SHARING is what made possible the information you just read on this page.....(hint hint...:-)