Alexander McKee Family
Randolph County, Illinois, United States of America
This website presents the migration generation of the Alexander McKee family. This family tree includes only names, dates, and places with few references. The website is intended to serve as a guide to current and future researchers who undoubtedly will want to look up the records for themselves. This tree also serves as a quick reference for anyone who thinks he or she might be related to the Alexander McKee family in Randolph County, Illinois. Additional—sourced—information appears in books that I have written about this McKee family. Contact me (email@example.com) and I will be happy to trade information.
In constructing this website, I followed a model that is similar to the method used by Mrs. Frank S. Torrens and her daughter Louise M. Torrens in their genealogy series Family Genealogies of Sparta, Illinois. I found copies of the various volumes of this series at the Salt Lake City Family History Center and discovered that the information jump-started my research on many lines. I hope you have the same experience while using my website.
I’ve used two devices to help you navigate this website.
· Unique Number for each Person
I plan to update this website as information becomes available to me. If you have questions, corrections, or information to add, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Migration Generation and their Children
Joseph A. McKee
William M. McKee
John Alexander Campbell
Robert Harvey Campbell
Mary M. McKee
Margaret M. McKee
Jennie Elizabeth McKee
Cora Bowerman McKee
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Pamela A. Tremé
The migration generation of the Alexander McKee family includes Alexander (a widower) and all of his children that I know of save one daughter—Agnes (McKee) Anderson. The bulk of the family comes into the United States with Alexander when the family sails from Ireland to Liverpool and on to New York City. The family arrives in New York aboard the Republic on 12 July 1837.
Difficult is one of the words used to describe the well-documented period in which the McKee family is traversing the Atlantic. Myriad first-hand accounts tell of grueling shipboard conditions. Passengers of lesser means complain that they must stay below deck for weeks at a time. Food frequently is scarce or running out, and passengers sicken and die while at sea. Many accounts talk about the sharks that follow ships across the Atlantic waiting for the dead bodies to drop over the side.
Like all immigrates, the McKee family takes a huge risk in coming to the United States. The immediate risk of the journey, while considerable, pales in comparison to the unknown that awaits them in a new country. Like many immigrants coming into the U.S. in the 1800s, there would be no turning back. The McKee family would have to make the best of their lot in life in their new home.
Joseph McKee is the family vanguard. Joseph is already in Randolph County, Illinois when the bulk of the family lands at New York City in 1837. Alexander McKee joins his son Joseph immediately, bringing his youngest child (Alexander) with him and possibly his youngest daughter Jane. Sons William and Robert (along with their families) remain in New York City for a few years. Presumably, they are working to raise the money they need to join the remainder of the family in Illinois. By the mid 1840s, all of the family members in the United States are in Randolph County, Illinois. After completing the journey of a lifetime, members of the migration generation buy land, settle in, and never stray far from their farms.
The one member of the migration generation that is not in the United States is Agnes (McKee) Anderson. Agnes migrates with her family from Ireland to County Cheshire, England, where she settles for many years. However, after the death of her husband and a son-in-law, and major economic upheavals in England, Agnes follows the path blazed by her family 30 years earlier bringing her daughter and granddaughters with her. Agnes sails on the ship Helvetia arriving at New York City 30 Dec 1867 and joins her family in Southern Illinois. With the arrival of Agnes, all of the children of Alexander McKee are together in one place again where they all end their days.
Only Agnes’ children—the Anderson and Dodd families—are left on the other side of the Atlantic. These two groups remain in England with many of them in County Cheshire or Lancashire. As family members on each side of the Atlantic die, contact between the families disintegrate. Eventually, all knowledge of the English lines of the family is lost to American descendants. Presumably, the same is true for the English descendants. This family tree reunites them with their many American cousins.