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Ogden, Harrison, Underground Railroad, Greene County, PA
Ogden, Harrison. Family Group Sheet and Story
Greene County, PA
Submitted by Bill A. Davison

Harrison "Harris" Ogden was a slave in the South who escaped over what was known as the Underground Railroad. One of the stations on the U.R. was located in Whiteley Twp in Greene County, PA near Red''s Crossing which was located about seven miles south of Waynesburg at the home of William Orndoff.

This was a road at the top of the township which lead off Route 218. There was a cabin in the middle of an orchard and it was there that the slaves would stay overnight when they reached the Orndoff home from the nearest station at Mt. Morris.

From there they would be taken to a home near Deer Lick, and hidden in the bed of a spring wagon and covered with sacks of straw or other farm produce. After arriving at the station, Harrison Ogden decided to remain in the community and raise his family there. His son, Silas, was three years old when he and his parents were smuggled north on the Underground Railroad.

Harrisons son, Silas, was probably one of the most picturesque figures in the area. As a boy, Silas trudged more than two miles morning and night to and from his home and the old Higgins School on Smith Creek to get an education.

Although he had no shoes in which to walk the two miles to the Higgins School, Silas improvised foot gear from frozen chips which he tied to his feet with straps of slippery elm bark.

In those days textbooks were not furnished and parents had to buy them for their children. Since Silas'' father was too poor to afford to buy him textbooks, Silas borrowed books from his schoolmates and studied with the neighborhood boys. He was industrious as a boy and young man and it was while working at the arduous task of mauling rails that he met with the accident that eventually caused his total blindness.

Back in 1905 he was mauling rails when a chip from the steel wedge used to split the rails struck him in the eye. The mishap caused the loss of that eye and eventually the other eye became affected by the injury. He had become totally blind since 1911, but was able to go about without aid and even travel long distances in the country. He learned to recognize friends and acquaintances by the sound of their voices and could identify many of them almost as soon as they spoke.

Silas Ogden: Waynesburg, PA

Family Group Sheet:

I. Harrison "Harris" Ogden, wife_____, and 3 year old son Silas escaped into
Greene County, PA about ?. However, since Caleb Davison might have helped
Harrison escape Virginia, the year could be around 1955 to 1857 for that was
about the time Caleb and family moved to Pennsylvania from Virginia. Plus or
minus on the years. The Davison''s Manumission is dated 1852.

In the 1860 census, Harrison''s brother George and his family were
living in Perry Township, Greene County, in the same household with
Harrison and his family. George was listed as head of household living
next door to the Caleb and Phoebe Davison family.The parents of Harrison
and George are unknown as this time so the information presented below will
detail the families of the two brothers, their two sisters and their
descendants only gathered from information found in the available census.

1. Harrison "Harris" Ogden married 1st________, married 2nd Rebecca Perkins
and married 3rd, Mary Jane_____. Harrison served in the 6th Regiment,
company E. during the Civil War.

Children of ____ (____) and Harrison Ogden
a. John Ogden born ca 1883 married Nellie ____. John was employed as a
hostler in the stable of Inghram Cummins, on the fair grounds in Waynesburg,
Pennsylvania. John was found dead in a small shack on the fair grounds a
victim of monoxide poisoning.

Children of Nellie (____) and John Ogden
a._____Ogden, a daughter who lived in Clarksburg, WV
b._____Ogden, a daughter who lived in Clarksburg, WV
c._____Ogden, a son who lived in the West.

Children of ____(___) and Harrison "Harris" Ogden continued:
B. Jesse Ogden married Harriet "Haddie" Ponzoo. Beside the children
listed below, Harriet had a son, Paul Ogden, Sr, to William "Bill"
Edward Beckwith, the son of Annie Mariah (Manley) Bruce and Lloyd
Beckwith. Paul married on October 21, 1934, DeVaunte Elmora Ford,
the daughter of Jesse Cameron of Kentucky and Bert Williams Ford,
a minister from Bloomsburg, PA.

Children of Harriet "Haddie" Ponzoo and Jesse Ogden
a. Wayne Ogden
b. Harry Ogden
Children of _____(___)and Harrison "Harris" Ogden, con''t:
C. Edmund Ogden
D. Susan Ogden

Children of Rebecca (Perkins) and Harrison Ogden
a. Silas Ogden, born January 10, 1862: married Lovenia (Viney) Ponzoo of Canada.

Children of Lovenia and Silas:
a. Catherine Ogden, born 1881, died June 16, 1910 in Franklin Twp,
Greene Co, PA. She is buried in Bryant Cemetery, Greene County, PA.
b. Rachel May Ogden, born May 4, 1894; married on September 4, 1917,
Oscar Jackson "Jack" Alfred, Sr., born March 21, 1893, the son of
Belle Blake and Jacob "Jake" Alfred. Rachel died April 15, 1959, and
Oscar Alfred, Sr. died April 15, 1955. Both Rachel and Oscar are buried
in Green Mount Cemetery, Waynesburg, PA.

Child of Rachel May (Ogden) and Harrison Lacy
a. Solomon Ogden died Feb 3, 1914.

Child of Rachel May Ogden
a. James E. Ogden

Child of Rachel M. (Ogden) and Oscar Jackson "Jack" Alfred Sr
a. Oscar Alfred Jr.

Children of Rebecca (Perkins) and Harrison "Harris" Ogden con''t:
B. Florence Ogden, born 1866
C. William Ogden, born 1868

Children of Mary Jane (___) and Harrison "Harris" Ogden
A. James Ogden
B. Ellsworth Ogden

II George Ogden, born ca 1830, married Caroline _____
Children of Caroline (___) and George Ogden
A. Thomas Ogden
B. Henry Ogden
C. Reason Ogden
D. Josephine Ogden

III Malinda Ogden
IV Charlotte Ogden

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