Family of Elizabeth Clirehugh (1803–1884)

My mother was Marion Clirehugh. She was the fourth generation of Clirehughs in America. Her great-grandfather, Vair Clirehugh, moved in 1834 from Edinburgh, Scotland to New York City, New York. Vair Clirehugh was 36 when he moved his wife and three children to NY. He resumed his business as a wig maker and barber and had two more children.

This page details the family and descendants of Elizabeth Clirehugh, sister of Vair. Like her brother, she was born in Scotland and immigrated to New York City, New York. Her parental family is detailed on the Clirehugh family home page.

Other Documents

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At A Glance

In the Beginning

1. William Clirehugh, lived in Edinburgh, Scotland in the 1700s and 1800s. He is my great-great-great grandfather.
first wife Margaret Meldrum (1746– ) lived Edinburgh, Scotland; married 1794
second wife Margaret Paterson, married 1810 Edinburgh, Scotland

First Generation

1.4 Elizabeth Clirehugh (1803–1884) born Scotland, died NY
  m. John Cockburn lived Scotland

Second Generation

1.4.1 Helen Cockburn (1827–1850) born Scotland, died NY
  m. George Duncan (1822–1864) born Scotland, died NY
1.4.2 William Cockburn (1827–1853) born Scotland, died NY
1.4.3 John Cockburn (1831–1872) born Scotland, died NY

List of Family Members

1.4 Elizabeth CLIREHUGH b. 10-1-1803 Edinburgh, Scotland
bap. 10-19-1803 Edinburgh, Scotland
m. 5-15-1825 John COCKBURN in Edinburgh, Scotland
d. 10-21-1884 NYC, NY
bur. 10-24-1884 Brooklyn, NY

Known or suspected children:
Helen Cockburn, b. abt. 1827 Scotland
William Cockburn, b. 2-25-1827 Scotland [relationship inferred from burial and death records]
John Cockburn, b. abt. 1831 Scotland

Lived in New York City. She was known as Aunt Cockburn to her niece and nephews.
I do not know when she immigrated to America.
In 1835 an Elizabeth Cockburn, widowed, was cited as living in NYC.
In 1840 New York City there were two households of an Elizabeth Cock___. In Ward 10 lived Elizabeth Cock with a family of 1 boy age 10–15, 3 boys age 15–20, 4 men age 20–30, one man age 30–40, 2 girls age 15–20, one woman age 20–30, and one woman age 30–40. In Ward 9 there was a Mrs. Elizabeth Cockrane. One may or may not be my aunt. There was no John Cock___ in that census.
Was cited in the 1842 and 1842 New York City Directory as Elizabeth Cockburn, widow of John, at 160 East Broadway.
The 1850 census cited an Elizabeth Cockburn (45) and John Cockburn (20) jeweler, living in NYC, both born Scotland.
The 1857 and 1869 NYC Directory cited Elizabeth Cockburn, widow, and John living at 75 Varick (across the streeet from Vair Clirehugh Jr., 1.2.2).
The 1859 NYC Directory cited Elizabeth Coburn, widow, and John living at 75 Varick.
The 1870 census cited Elizabeth Cockburn living in NYC (60) with son John (35) both born Scotland, he a pencil base maker, and William Duncan (15) born NY. William was Elizabeth's grandson; he was an orphan: his mother died in 1858 and father died in 1864.
In 1880 Elizabeth Cockson, widowed age 74 born Scotland, lived in Manhattan at 243 West 11th Street with an extended family composed of Alanson and Mary See, their son-in-law William Clirehugh Duncan and his wife Lizzie See Duncan, their two young children, and Mary See's mother and cousin. I believe Elizabeth's name was recorded wrong, she was undoubtedly Elizabeth Cockburn.
At her death Elizabeth lived in Manhattan at 243 West 11th Street.
I could not find Elizabeth in the 1860 census, perhaps for the same reason that Vair Clirehugh's family was missing—they were in Scotland. I also could not find her in the 1861 Scotland census.
Could not find son John or any other children in Scotland birth records.

1.4 -1 John COCKBURN b.
m. 5-15-1825 Elizabeth CLIREHUGH in Edinburgh, Scotland

Marriage announcement published in The Scotsman, an Edinburgh newspaper. The marriage was at the Abbeyhill.
I have found no real evidence that he ever lived in America.

1.4.1 Helen COCKBURN b. abt. 1827 Scotland
m. 5-18-1846 George DUNCAN in NYC
d. 5-24-1858 NYC age 31
bur. 5-26-1858 Green-Wood Cemetery, Brooklyn, NY

Had at least four children, all born NY:
George DUNCAN Jr., b. 1847
Helen E. DUNCAN, b. 1849
John DUNCAN, b. 1851
William Clirehugh DUNCAN, b. 7-1855

In 1850 lived in Canandaigua, NY with husband George and children George (3) and Helen E. (1); George was a merchant. Also in the household were William See (21, clerk) and Ann Cosgrove (22, servant). William See was likely a cousin of Alanson See whose daughter Mary later married William Clirehugh Duncan.
She is named in Vair's diary. The 5-13-58 entry reads "Helen Cockburn whom I was up to see two or three days ago is lying about as low as she can be. She is a great sufferer but it cannot last much longer." The 5-25-58 entry reads "Cousin Helen died yesterday, to be buried in our lot tomorrow."
At time of death she lived at 26 Perry Street.

1.4.1 -1 George DUNCAN b. 1822 Scotland
m. 5-18-1846 Helen COCKBURN in NYC
d. 6-1864
bur. 6-11-1864 Green-Wood Cemetery, Brooklyn, NY

In 1860 lived in NYC, NY with children George Jr. (13), John (9), and William (5), and no wife; clerk. William Clirehugh DUNCAN b. 7-1855 NY
m. 9-13-1876 Mary Elizabeth SEE in Manhattan
d. 6-21-1917 NYC
bur. unknown

Wife Mary Elizabeth (Lizzie) was born 6-6-1858 NYC; she may have died 12-1935. Her parents were Alanson SEE (b. 3-6-1812 NY, d. 6-1891 NY) and Mary Ann HALL (b. 7-1822 NY, d. 1917 NY).

Had 6 children born in NY:
Marion S. Duncan, b. 10-26-1877 NYC
William Alanson Duncan, b. 7-15-1879 NYC
Helen (Nellie) Jessie Duncan, b. 4-1882
George Arthur Duncan, b. 6-24-1884
Lizzie A. (Adele?) Duncan, b. 8-1890
James D. Duncan, b. 5-1894

Was President of the Greenwich Bank of New York.
Son William Alanson Duncan, also a banker, married Grace McWilliam in 1904. They had five children, including Helen Clirehugh Duncan. Daughter Helen married Hugh Eustis Paine on 11-28-1928 in NY. Helen's was the last of the Clirehugh family name in the descendants of Elizabeth (Clirehugh) Cockburn.

1.4.2 William COCKBURN b. 2-5-1827 Scotland
d. 1-19-1853 NYC, NY
bur. 1-21-1853 Green-Wood Cemetery, Brooklyn, NY

William died of phthysis, age 25yr 11mo 16da. He lived at 118 Varick. He was buried in the Cockburn family lot 22931 in Green-Wood Cemetery. It is the fact of his burial in this lot that inclines me to believe he was a son of Elizabeth (Clirehugh) Cockburn. I have no other evidence.

1.4.3 John COCKBURN b. abt. 1831 Scotland
d. 7-9-1872 NYC, NY age 41
bur. 7-11-1872 Green-Wood Cemetery, Brooklyn, NY

In 1850 lived with his mother in NYC, worked as jeweler.
On 5-31-1856 John Cockburn living at 75 Varick St., NY was naturalized.
In 1857 and 1859 he lived with his mother at 75 Varick, NYC.
I could not find him in the 1860 US census nor in the 1861 Scotland census.
In 1870 lived with his mother in NYC.
At time of death he lived at 75 Varick Street.
Never married.


Clirehughs Buried in Green-Wood Cemetery, Brooklyn, NY

The cemetery is located at 5th Avenue and 25 Street. There is a website about the gravestone inscriptions. There are two lots that hold Elizabeth Clirehugh's family and her in-laws:

In Lot 22931: (all of these people except the last one were originally buried elsewhere, see Duncan family page for details)

William Cockburn 1-21-1853 25 2458 died 1-19-1853 of phthysis, age 25yr 11mo 16da (implying a birthdate of 2-5-1827), born Scotland, lived at 118 Varick. I think William was a son of Elizabeth (Clirehugh) Cockburn.
Helen A. Duncan 2-27-1854   2458 likely the daughter of Helen (Cockburn) Duncan who was born 1849.
John H. Duncan 7-29-1854   2458 ? (not a child of Helen and George Duncan, who had a son named John born 1851 and still living in 1860).
Helen Duncan 5-26-1858   7859 daughter of Elizabeth (Clirehugh) Cockburn, and wife of George Duncan.
George Duncan 6-11-1864   7859 husband of Helen, daughter of Elizabeth (Clirehugh) Cockburn.
John Cockburn 7-11-1872 41 7859 ID 1.4.1, son of Elizabeth (Clirehugh) Cockburn. Died 7-9-1872, unmarried, last residence was 75 Varick Street, New York.
Elizabeth Cockburn 10-24-1884 81 N/A ID 1.4, Elizabeth Clirehugh. Born Scotland, died 10-21-1884, last residence was 243 West 11th Street, New York.

In Lot 22930:

Alanson See 6-13-1891 father of Lizzie See who married William Clirehugh Duncan
Mary A. See 3-15-1917 mother of Lizzie See who married William Clirehugh Duncan

Clirehughs in the New York Times

Notes for the Reader

ID: In this document, each person has an assigned ID. The ID is a segmented number where each segment is separated by a period. The number of segments indicates the generation. For example, 1.2.3 is the third child of 1.2 who is the second child of 1.0. Spouses are identified with a suffix of "-n" where n is the number of the marriage; for example, 1.2.3 -1 is the first spouse of 1.2.3.
When there is no ID, the relationship of the person to others is unknown; they may not be a relative.

Key dates are specified in MM-DD-CCYY format.

Date abbreviations: abt.: about b.: born bap.: baptized m.: married div.: divorced sep.: separated d.: died bur.: buried


Please contact me with corrections and additions or if you're a relative!

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Revision: 1-4-2011.