(The following history was compiled, written and submitted by chapter member, Isabel Lockard, edited by Flora L. VerStraten.) Although we know little for sure, about our Lockard family before the arrival of the first immigrants to America, it is possible to trace a probable course our family followed in prior ages. The Lowlands of Scotland were first settled by Angles who arrived in the seventh century. The name Lockard was originally spelled, Locard, or sometimes Lokart.

Many years later, in 1603, when James VI, son of Mary Queen of Scotland, came to the throne of England, many things changed. Over 200,000 Scots set sail for Ulster. These were mainly "Border" people from southern Scotland, people who for centuries had been at war with the neighboring English across the border. In Ulster the new arrivals transformed the region from a backward province to the most prosperous part of Ireland. But it was not a peaceful settlement. They were a belligerent bunch.

About 100 yrs. later, with rising rents, poor crops and religious discrimination, conditions had deteriorated. The Ulster Scots, or Scots-Irish as they came to be known, seeking religious freedom and greater opportunities, began another move. In the 1720ís about 50,000 sailed to America. They were small farmers, and not paupers; they took some capital and experience with them and their motive was to better their lot. During this period emigration was not easy, all arrangements had to be made by the emigrant himself, who traveled to the port and bargained personally for his passage with the captain of the ship in which he wished to sail. By 1776, it is estimated that almost half of Ulster population had crossed the Atlantic, and that one in seven of the colonists was Scots-Irish.

At first the newcomers were welcomed for their frontier toughness, and it was hoped they could keep the French and Indians at bay. Later on, in the Revolutionary War, the Scots-Irish became the shock troops and, according to one British general, accounted for half the rebel army. George Washington is said to have regarded these troops highly, and to have remarked that "with these men" he would make his "last stand for liberty."

James Logan, the state secretary of PA, granted a tract of land to one group of Scots-Irish to establish the frontier town of Donegal. It didnít work out and the newcomers moved farther west. A map found in the book titled, The Story of the English, page 158, illustrates the routes of the migration west from Philadelphia, the main entry port for these immigrants. The northernmost route crosses PA and the panhandle of what is now West Virginia into Ohio and beyond. This route would enter Ohio at Jefferson County where our Lockards first lived, then appears to continue westward through Coshocton County, where they later lived.

The first of our Lockard family to come to this country was probably Andrew Lockard (1762 Ė 1848). In an account of family history, Francis Marion Lockard stated that, according to family tradition, his great-grandfather, Andrew Lockard ran away when a lad, got on board a sailing vessel and landed in America prior to the Revolution, and that he served under George Washington when he was 16. He may have come alone, and that others of his family, including his grandfather, Andrew Lockard, his father, John Lockard, and uncle, James Lockard, and their families, all came to America after he did.
Francis M. Lockard also said that the family name originally was Lockhart, but the mustering officer got is Lockard, and that after the Revolutionary War that spelling was used. Although the early records in Jefferson County, Ohio have the name misspelled in various ways in various records, I find no evidence confirming the earlier spelling. When I was in Ireland, in 1978, I visited the National Library in Dublin, and got to see "The Book of Surnames for County Donegal." There were no records as early as 1800, and I could find nothing specific about our family, but I did learn that there were Lockards (our spelling) living in southern County Donegal in the early part of the last century, but no Lockharts. In Simon M. Lockhartís book (published in 1976) there are many Lockharts in southern Scotland, but no Lockards. Lockard seems to be a Donegal spelling. Jefferson County, Ohio appears to have been settled largely by people from County Donegal. (Contact - Isabel Lockard at† ilockard@juno.com ).

Footnotes and references

  • The Story of English by R. McCrum, W. Cran, R. MacNeil, 1986 Penguin Books pp 127-161.
  • Seven Centuries by Simon M. Lockhart
  • The life of Mrs. Sarah McBride Lockard, of Columbiana Co., OH.
  • The Great Hunger, byC. Woodham Smith
  • Born Fighting,, by James Webb, 2004