History of Bucks County, Pa Volume 3 by William H. Davis
Names and Page # Index



   STEPHEN K. ATKINSON, Prothonotary of the county of Bucks, was born in Upper Makefield township, Bucks county, Pennsylvania, June 7, 1854, and is a son of Jesse H. and Martha B. (STRADLING) ATKINSON.

   An account of the migration of John and Christopher ATKINSON from Lancashire with their families, the death of the head of both families on the ill-fated "Brittanica" in 1692, and the subsequent marriage and settlement of John ATKINSON, Jr., in Makefield, is given in the sketch of The ATKINSON Family in this volume.

   William ATKINSON, second son of John Jr. and Mary (SMITH) ATKINSON, was born in Upper Makefield in 1721, and married, September 1, 1742, Mary TOMLINSON, daughter of Joseph TOMLINSON.  He inherited from his father 120 acres of the homestead in Upper Makefield, and lived thereon until his death in April, 1800.  He and his wife Mary were the parents of thirteen children, of whom eight lived to mature age.  1. Mary, married John ROSE; 2. John, married Hannah LEE; 3. Sarah, and 4. Eleanor, both of whom married LEES; 5. Isaac, who moved to Maryland; 6. Phebe; 7. William; 8. Joseph.

   John ATKINSON, eldest surviving son of William and Mary (TOMLINSON) ATKINSON, inherited the homestead and lived thereon all his life, dying in 1831.   He married his second cousin, Hannah LEE, in 1769, and had twelve children, nine of whom lived to maturity, vis: May, born 1770, married Joseph GUMMERE; Hannah, born 1772, married Joshua BURLEIGH; Esther, born 1774, married Joseph RANDALL; Jane, born 1775, married Charles DEEDER; Elizabeth, born 1777, married Jacob COOPER; John, born 1778, married first Mary ATKINSON, and second Elizabeth HARDING; Phebe, born 1781, married William NEELD; William, born 1782, married Belinda HARVEY; and Samuel, born 1789, married Mary HARDING.

   Samuel ATKINSON, youngest son of John and Hannah (LEE) ATKINSON, was born in Upper Makefield in the year 1789, and lived there all his life with the exception of four years spent in Doylestown.  On April 28, 1821, his parents conveyed to him sixty-eight acres of the old homestead on which he lived until he became recorder of deeds in 1836, and which he conveyed to his son Samuel in 1842.  He was commissioned recorder of deeds of Bucks county, January 23, 1836, and filled that position for four years, being recommissioned January 4, 1839, for one year, the constitutional convention of 1838 having made the office elective and to go into effect with the fall election of 1839.  He also filled the position of deputy register of wills while an incumbent of the recorder's office.  At the expiration of his second term as recorder he purchased a property in the village of Buckmanville, where he lived the remainder of his life, dying August 23, 1858.  He was commissioned April 14, 1840, a justice of the peace of Upper Makefield township, and did a large amount of public business.  He was a Whig in politics, and took part in the organization of the Republican party in 1856.  Like all his ancestors for many generations, he was a member of Wrightstown Meeting of Friends.  He married Mary HARDING, of Southampton, and they were the parents of nine children, three of whom died young: Charles, Watson, and John.  Those who survived were: Rachel, who married Kinsey TOMLINSON, a prominent resident of Newtown; Samuel, who married Rebecca, daughter of Bezeleel EASTBURN and lived and died on the old homestead; Silas L., who married Elizabeth EASTBURN, and was a printer for several years in Doylestown, later of Langhorne, where recently died; Ralph L., who married first Sarah Ann SCARBOROUGH, and (second) Martha E. JOHNSON, and removed to Shelby county, Ohio; Jesse H., the father of Stephen K.; and Hannah, who married Stephen L. KIRK, a prominent merchant of Langhorne.

   Jesse H. ATKINSON, son of Samuel and Mary (HARDING) ATKINSON, was born in Upper Makefield, May 6, 1824, and was reared on his father's farm near Buckmanville, acquiring his education at the public schools.  During his father's incumbency of the office of recorder of deeds he filled the position of transcribing clerk.  He married, October 7, 1847, Martha B. STRADLING, born August 12, 1828, daughter of William and Sarah (CARVER) STRADLING, of Newtown township.  William STRADLING, was a son of Joseph and Hannah (MICHENER) STRADLING, of Plumstead, grandson of Daniel, and great-grandson of Thomas and Lydia (DOAN) STRADLING, who were married at Middletown, October 5, 1719, and settled at Newtown township, where Thomas died in 1764.  Sarah (CARVER) STRADLING, born February 19, 1794, was a daughter of William and Phebe (WORTHINGTON) CARVER, granddaughter of William and Sarah (STRICKLAND) CARVER, and great-granddaughter of William and Elizabeth (WALMSLEY) CARVER, the first of the family to settle in Buckingham, and William CARVER, who came from England in 1682 and settled in Byberry, Philadelphia county.

   Jesse H. ATKINSON followed farming for a few years after his marriage in Upper Makefield, and later engaged in droving and dealing in western horses, residing in Newtown township.  He was actively interested in local politics, and was elected to the office of register of wills of Bucks county in the fall of 1872, on the Republican ticket, and served the term of three years.   He died January 4, 1876, one day after the expiration of his term of office.  His wife, Martha B., still survives him, residing in Newtown, Bucks county.  They were the parents of four children: Georgine T., who died at the age of thirteen years; William S., who died in his eighteenth year; Stephen K., the subject of this sketch; Sallie, born 1862, married Steward S. CROUSE, of Riegelsville, Bucks county, and resided in Philadelphia, where he died in 1887, leaving three children,-J. Clyde, Mary and Fred.

   Stephen K. ATKINSON was educated at the Hughesian School, Buckingham, and at Doylestown English and Classical Seminary.  At an early age he accepted a position as clerk in the general merchandise store at Holicong, and later worked on the farm for Josiah R. PENNINGTON, in Buckingham, in the summer months, for three years attending school in winter.  On the election of his father to the office of register of wills he entered the office as his assistant and deputy.  At the death of his father he engaged in farming for a few years, and then engaged in the clothing and gents' furnishing business at Doylestown, and later was employed as a traveling salesman for a wholesale house.  He removed to Newtown, where he owned and conducted a livery stable for a few years, and later engaged in selling cigars for a large wholesale house.  He has for several years taken an active interest in local politics, and was nominated and elected to the office of prothonotary of Bucks county in the fall of 1903.

   He married May 24, 1877, Sallie M. RUTH, born in Buckingham, May 21, 1858, daughter of Jesse and Martha (CARVER) RUTH.  She is also a descendant of William CARVER, the immigrant of 1682, her maternal grandparents being Izri and Mary (HARTLEY) CARVER, the former of whom was a son of William and Martha (ADDIS) CARVER, and a grandson of Joseph CARVER, another son of William and Elizabeth (WALMSLEY) CARVER before mentioned.  On the paternal side Mrs. ATKINSON is descended from early German settlers in Upper Bucks.   The children of Stephen K. and Sallie M. (RUTH) ATKINSON are: 1. Elmer H., born April 21, 1879, married Clara SERGEANT, daughter of Charles SERGEANT of Langhorne and resides in Newtown; they had three children, Ogden, Eugene, and Elmer R., the latter of whom died August 7, 1905; 2. Martha Ruth, born April 4, 1882, wife of Dr. George R. DOAN of Newtown.  They have one child, Ronald.  Mr. ATKINSON still retains his residence at Newtown, as well as an active interest in the affairs of that borough.

Text taken from pages 167and 168 of:

Davis, William W. H., A.M., History of Bucks County, Pennsylvania [New York-Chicago: The Lewis Publishing Company, 1905] Volume III

Transcribed FEBRUARY 2001 by GRACE T. BURTON of PA as part of the Bucks Co., Early Family Project, www.rootsweb.com/~pabucks/bucksindex.html

Published February 2001 on the Bucks county, Pa., USGenWeb pages at www.rootsweb.com/~pabucks/