Campbells of Nelson, PA Home Page

Family History of the

Campbells, Luggs, Blackwells, and Associated Families of Nelson, Tioga Co., PA

It's updated frequently, so check back often. And please send us material you'd like to see added.

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2020 Campbell Reunion.

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Campbell Cousins Correspondence Volumes

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This Site

This website is for the descendants of one pioneer couple, Joseph and Mary Harper Campbell; and of associated families --- especially HAZLETTs, LUGGs and BLACKWELLs. They now have 10 generations of descendants. Our family tree now contains over 24,000 individuals, with more than 4,500 surnames. Since the very beginning, our Campbells, Hazletts, Luggs and Blackwells have been intertwined.

Enjoy exploring these pages, and be sure to contact us if you are a relative. We love hearing from "new" cousins we hadn't known of.

[Cautionary note: Several different, unrelated, Campbell families came to Tioga Co., PA in the early 1800s. It's easy to get the various families mixed up. A few of us have ancestors in more than one of those Campbell lines.]

Our Story

Our story starts with Joseph Campbell (born 1748 in Scotland) and wife Mary Harper (born 1749 in Scotland) who lived for a while in County Antrim in North Ireland, the men reportedly employed at the Belfast Iron Works before coming to the US.

They pronounced their name as "CAM-uhl" (like the cigarettes), not as "CAMP-bell" or "CAM-bul". (When the surname was created, almost 800 years ago, it was spelled 'Cambell.')

The first member of the family known to come to America was Joseph's younger brother John Campbell, b. 1761 in Scotland. He came about 1776 to Philadelphia, where he was first a tailor, and later a land agent.

The rest of our Campbells, the Hazletts, the Luggs, and the Blackwells immigrated in dribs and drabs over the years --- the last (Chas. B. Lugg & family) in 1833.

For a timeline and details, see Who Came When (it covers Campbells, Hazletts, Luggs and Blackwells).

By the very early 1800s, some of Joseph and Mary's older children had settled in Lancaster Co., PA. Their oldest son, John Campbell (b. 1781) soon moved to the Pittsburgh area. Eldest daughter Sally and son-in-law, Sam Hazlett , by 1806 may have moved from Lancaster Co. to a farm near Stroudsburg, PA. By 1810 Sam Hazlett, Joseph Campbell and the elder John Campbell completed land purchases in Beecher's Island. Joseph and Mary Harper Campbell, plus their younger children, came to the US in the fall of 1810.

Probably in late 1810, Joseph and Mary, accompanied by 5 of their 8 children; 2 of their 3 Hazlett sons-in-law; Joseph's brother John; and their livestock migrated from son-in-law Sam Hazlett's farm in PA's Monroe Co. (or perhaps Lancaster Co.) to Beecher's Island. Stories about their epic journey were recorded by granddaughter-in-law Lucy DUNHAM Hazlett.

The Campbells and Hazletts were among the first permanent settlers in the area. They rapidly multiplied. James and Mary Blackwell Campbell apparently had 13. Joseph and Ann Clinch Campbell had 12 children. John and Jane Campbell Hazlett had 9. Sam and Sally Campbell Hazlett had 7. So they quickly populated a community and filled a school house.

In 1894, Phebe CAMPBELL Hoyt organized the first Campbell Reunion (they liked to spell it "Re-union'). The reunions were held annually for 50 years. At their peak, more than 300 attended, including many Blackwells and Luggs. They were halted in WW2, but restarted in 2000 by Phebe's great-grandson, Bill Thompson. One branch of the family (Joseph and Ann Clinch Campbell's line) found the reunions too big, and held separate Campbell Cousins Dinners, which were by invitation only, and primarily for the 21 first cousins who were Joseph and Ann's grandchildren. They had grown up together, and felt a strong bond to each other. Both events were held yearly, almost always near Nelson. Many of the Cousins Dinner attendees were also active in the "Re-unions".

We have a wonderful repository of our family's history: The minutes of the Campbell Reunions; minutes of the Campbell Cousins Diners; early letters; four volumes of letters, The Campbell Cousins Correspondence, written in the 1920s; and lots of genealogical work done by Jane CAMPBELL Tubbs (1834 - 1916), Will Selph, Jr. (1871 - 1941), Mabel SHIPMAN Shaw (1875 - 1973), Joseph W. Buck (1891 - 1955) and wife Marjorie ELDREDGE Buck (1900 - 1980), Thelma ELLISON Huyett (1920 - 2011), and Ann PEARSON Lugg (1929  - 2020).

Dozens of family members and interested genealogists have contributed information for you to enjoy. Tom Zurflieh deserves special recognition for his help in republishing volumes 1 and 2 of The Campbell Cousins Correspondence in hard copy, and for scanning their photos.

Your additions and corrections to our letters, photos, stories or updates to our tree are most welcome. And please come to our reunions. They're held in Nelson, PA in even numbered years. The next one will be Aug 1, 2020. Because of COVID-19 it will be our first reunion that you can join in from your homes via Internet or land lines, thanks to videoconferencing via It will be a chance to meet cousins from all over the country for the first time and a chance to connect to your "roots".

To contact Campbell Reunion of Nelson, PA, send e-mail to user name 'BillThompson76' AT domain name ''.

Copyright © 2008, 2009, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019 & 2020 by William B. Thompson. Commercial use not allowed.