Philadelphia, PA

William Stavely was born June 23, 1800, the son of Joseph Staveley Jr. and Rachel REYNER of Kent County, Maryland.  William moved to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, at the age of fifteen.  At the age of twenty-two he married Margaret SHEED on August 27, 1822, and had the following children:

Lavinia Sheed Stavely b. July 31, 1823 d. 1895 Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Olivia Stavely b. July 9, 1826 d. May 16, 1881* Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Isabella Leary Stavely b. December 29, 1827 d. 1831 Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Ermina Reyner Stavely b. October 14, 1829   Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
William Reyner Stavely b. October 21, 1831   Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Virginia Stavely b. June 8, 1837 d. March 4, 1855* Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Margaret Stavely b. October 24, 1833   Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Rosabella Stavely b. May 4, 1843   Philadelphia, Pennsylvania


William and Margaret relocated to Lahaska in Bucks County, Pennsylvania.

*Buried at Trinity Episcopal Church Cemetery in Buckingham, PA.

Excerpted from: History of Bucks county, Pennsylvania - 1905

By William Watts Hart Davis, Warren Smedley Ely, John Woolf Jordan

Page 649

William Staveley, father of Dr Staveley [of Solebury] was born in Shrewsbury parish Kent county Maryland. He remained in the state of his nativity until fifteen years of age when he went to Philadelphia and there learned the printer's trade as an apprentice under Thomas J Stiles publisher of the True American. He afterward entered the service of John H Cunningham and becoming the purchaser of Mr Cunningham's interest in 1823 conducted a small printing business at Third and Dock streets until his property was purchased by Stephen Girard. His next location was on Pear street near St Paul's church and there his business was gradually developed and enlarged. In October 1823 he began the publication of the Philadelphia Recorder after called the Episcopal Record and successively the Episcopal Register and Church. His connection with this religious journal brought him into contact with many of the most prominent clergy and laymen of the Episcopal church and his business relations proved frequently the foundation of lifelong friendships. He was a believer in the Episcopal faith and long held membership with that denomination. Soon after he began the publication of the Philadelphia Recorder he also published and circulated throughout the United States a cheap edition of the Book of Common Prayer and following the liberation of the Spanish American colonies he enjoyed an extensive and remunerative printing trade in the Spanish language for the Mexican and Colombian governments. Admitting James McCalla to a partnership the firm style of Staveley & McCalla was assumed and the house became one of the most prominent of the country in connection with religious publications and the printing of convention journals reports tracts etc. His connection with the publishing business continued until 1854 although some years prior to this time he had become a resident of Bucks county. In 1838 he had purchased a country home in Solebury township and there continued to reside up to the time of his death which occurred on the 22d of March 1877. He had throughout the entire period of his residence in Bucks county exerted a strong and beneficial influence for its development along moral lines. He was most active and earnest in his effort in behalf of the church and for fifteen years served as vestryman and Sunday school superintendent at Old Swedes church. He was also deeply interested in the Church of the Ascension and assisted materially in relieving it from financial embarrassment. He was instrumental in organizing the parish at Doylestown and Centerville and gave to the latter its parsonage and he acted as superintendent of the Bucks County Bible Society for many years and his influence in behalf of moral advancement was far reaching and beneficial. He recognized too the obligations and duties of citizenship in connection with political interests and espoused with equal earnestness the political principles which he deemed most beneficial to county state and national government. In early life he was a Jacksonian Democrat and a most ardent admirer of Andrew Jackson always retaining a large portrait of him in his room. He afterward became a Whig and subsequently a most unfaltering and inflexible advocate of Republican principles. Political preferment however had no attraction for him. He was likewise a contributor to the agricultural development of the county and after he took possession of the family estate in Solebury township he was deeply interested in everything pertaining to progress along farm lines and quick to introduce any improvement that he believed would come to be of practical benefit in agricultural circles. He was the first man in Bucks county to use a mowing machine. For a number of years he was the president of the Bucks County Agricultural Society, and at the time of his death he was president of the Brownsville Horse Company, the United Horse Company, the Farmers and Mechanics Mutual Fire Insurance Company of Bucks county and a director of the Lahaska & New Hope and Buckingham & Doylestown Turnpike Companies, and declined to act as president of the last named because of advanced age. On the 27th of August 1822 William Staveley was united in marriage to Miss Margaret Sheed a daughter of George Sheed of the old district of Southwark, Philadelphia, and on the 27th of August 1872 they celebrated their golden wedding. They were the parents of eight children of whom five are yet living: Mina the wife of William Biles, of Solebury township; William R.; Margaret, the widow of E Mitchell; Cornell; and Belle, the wife of James W Jones, of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.


The following Stavelys are NOT descended from the Maryland line. According to census transcripts this William J. Stavely arrived in the United States around 1877 from Northern Ireland:

1900: Locust Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

William J. STAVELY* Head M Male  44 Shoe Mfr Ireland
Ida C. STAVELY Wife M Female  34 None Pennsylvania
Annie STAVELY Daur S Female  7 At School Pennsylvania
William J. STAVELY, Jr. Son S Male  6 At School Pennsylvania
Frederick STAVELY Son S Male  5   Pennsylvania
George G. STAVELY Son S Male  2   Pennsylvania


*William J. Stavely gives his year of immigration from Ireland to the United States as 1877.

1910: North Randolph Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

William J. STAVELEY Head M Male  59 Shoemaker Ireland
Ida C. STAVELEY Wife M Female  43 Operator Pennsylvania
Anna STAVELEY Daur S Female  17 None Pennsylvania
William J. STAVELEY Son S Male  16 Apprentice - Supply House Pennsylvania
Frederick M. STAVELEY Son S Male  15 Packer - Seed House Pennsylvania
George G. STAVELEY Son S Male  12 None Pennsylvania


By 1920, Ida appears to be widowed, and the entire remaining family is found living in Camden County, New Jersey.



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