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SWANK, Nancy (Moore)

    Johnstown Daily Tribune, 13 Nov 1899, Contributed by Sharon Trosan

Johnstown Daily Tribune; Nov 13, 1899

Mrs. Nancy M. Swank, after an illness of three weeks, passed peacefully into rest this morning about 3 o'clock at the family residence, No 320 Main Street. The immediate cause of her death was paralysis, although she had been in failing health for some time. She was one of the oldest residents of Johnstown being in her 86th year, and having lived 61years in this place. She was at the time of her death the oldest member of the First Presbyterian Church, and the following facts of interest concerning her life have been furnished by her pastor.

Mrs. Swank came of worthy and distinguished ancestry. Her maiden name was Nancy Moore, she being the daughter of Isaac and Mary (Parker) Moore, who resided near Salem Cross Roads, Westmoreland County. She was born May 11, 1814. Her father was a surveyor and farmer, well known and respected. Her grandfather was one of the most prominent of the early settlers of Western Pennsylvania--the Hon John Moore, first President Judge of Westmoreland County and the first in this part of the State. He came to Westmoreland county in 1757, was a member of the State Convention of 1776, and was State Senator for Westmoreland and Allegheny Counties. He was also an Elder in the Presbyterian Church and a man of sterling Christian qualities.

Judge Moore had four daughters and two sons. One of the daughters was married to Rev Francis Laird, DD, one of the early ministers of the Presbyterian Church whose memory is still fondly cherished by many. Rev David Kirkpatrick, D.D., another of the early Presbyterian divines, who exerted a wide influence was also a relative of Mrs. Swank.

George W. Swank and Nancy Moore were married Dec 1, 1830, and came to Johnstown in the fall of 1838. To them were born seven children, viz: James M., of Philadelphia; Mary M, wife of William Turner, of Wilkinsburg, PA; George T., of Johnstown; Nancy J., deceased wife of Cyrus Elder, Esq; Elizabeth, deceased; Genevieve R, deceased wife of Powell Stackhouse; and Emily M, of this city wife of the late Dr. J. K. Lee. Mr. George W. Swank was connected with the transportation service of the old canal, and when the family first came to Johnstown they lived on what was then known as the Island, near where the Gautier Works now stand. Mr Swank died on May 28, 1856, aged forty-six.

Soon after coming to Johnstown Mr and Mrs Swank united with the Presbyterian Church, during the pastorate of Rev Samuel Swan. Mr Swank became a Trustee and both were active in church work. Upon her husband's death the care and training of the children, most of whom were yet quite young, devolved upon the mother, and our older citizens delight to speak of the devotion and faithfulness with which she performed her part.

Of none may it be more truly said than of her, "she looked well to the ways of her household, and ate not the bread of idleness; her children arise up and call her blessed." A former pastor who recently visited her referred to her as "the Queen of the Home." Her kindness to the poor and unfortunate, her loving ministry to the sick and dying, her loyalty and devotion to her church, were also traits especially marked in the days of her activity, but characteristic of her to the last, and ineffaceable at death. She was esteemed and beloved by all who knew her, and there will be very many outside her immediate circle of relatives to mourn her death.

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