from Millicent V. Craig

Over 40,000 people passed by the bier in the City Hall of Manchester, England, to pay their respects to their beloved citizen, teacher, scientist and natural philosopher, Dr. John Dalton. What is even more remarkable is that this man achieved such greatness and honour by virtue of being self-taught, a true didactic. As a member of a dissenting religion, Quaker, the universities were closed to him at that time in history, but through persistent scientific investigations, teaching and devotion, his pursuits were recognized and he eventually was awarded an honorary doctorate degree by Oxford University for his scientific achievements.

Dalton's Family Background
John's grandfather, Jonathan Dalton, was the first family member to join the Society of Friends (Quaker) which was very strong in Cumberland County, England in the 17th Century. Jonathan, who was born in Eaglesfield in 1689 married another Quaker, Abigail Fearon, in 1712. Abigail brought to the marriage the first Dalton property as a dowry. It was a small messuage and tenement which Jonathan increased to some sixty acres. This eventually passed on to Joseph Dalton, John's father. Joseph who was born in 1733 married Deborah Greenup, also Quaker born and the couple had four children. Mary the eldest died in infancy. The births of Jonathan and the second Mary were recorded, but for an unknown reason, John's birth was not recorded. In later years he estimated his birth date as April 5, 1766.

The Daltons of Eaglesfield
I. Peter Dalton, 1658-1704, m. 1684
II. Jonathan Dalton, b. 1689, m. Abigail Fearon 1712, d.1772
III. Joseph Dalton, b. 1733, m. Deborah Greenup, 10 June 1755, d. 1787
IV. Children of Joseph and Deborah
Mary, b. 1757, died in infancy
Jonathan, b. 1759, d. 9 Sept. 1834
Mary b. 1764, d. 24 Jan. 1795
John Dalton, b. 1766, d. 5 Sept. 1844, (scientist).

Note: A distant relative of John Dalton namely John Dalton, Esq. put together their family tree back to 1560 but we have not printed the earliest entries for lack of completeness.

The three children, of Joseph and Deborah Dalton, who lived to adulthood did not marry, and this line became extant.

The Early Years
Joseph Dalton eked out a bare living at farming and supplemented his income with weaving. The weaving shed was attached to a two-room cottage with a loft. Even in these crowded quarters, Deborah provided space to sell paper, ink and quills to the locals of Eaglesfield to earn a few extra pence. As a young lad, John accompanied his father to the fields and learned measurement. navigation and mathematics from him. The philosophy of the Friends was to teach practical crafts and to live by the bible. John attended the Quaker elementary school in Pardshaw, and by age 12 he opened a school in Eaglesfield at the Friend's meeting house where he taught for two winters. It was here that he caught the attention of his first mentor, Elihu Robinson, who tutored young Dalton in mathematics and sciences and availed Dalton of his large library and periodical collection. Dalton studied in the comfortable surroundings of Robinson's home, so different from the hovels of the village.

John's cousin, George Bewley, was headmaster at the Quaker School, a boarding school in Kendal some 45 miles away. Jonathan, John's brother, had already joined the staff. At age 15, John walked the 45 miles to Kendal and he too became an assistant at the school in 1781. A few years later, Bewley retired and John's parents took a mortgage on their farm to enable their children to purchase the school.. Mary joined them as housekeeper. They taught Latin, Greek, French, mathematics, writing, and merchant's accounts. To make ends meet, they gave private lessons, tutored, gave public lectures, ventured into subjects of mechanics, optics, meteorology as well as natural philosophy. They occasionally had to borrow a few pence but paid off the mortgage. When Joseph died, Jonathan returned to Eaglesfield and John remained at the school.

For 17 years, John taught at Kendal and it was there that he became the protegee of Quaker John Gough, son of a wealthy merchant. Gough though blind, had an extensive library, had taught Latin and Greek to young Dalton, was an experimenter himself and directed his junior to organize and keep meticulous records of all experiments. In return, Dalton was a reader for Gough.

After being in Kendal for so long, John thought it was time to pursue a career in which he could earn enough money to support a wife and small family. He sought the opinions of friends and family concerning the study of physics but their advice was that his future was in teaching. Gough had converted to Unitarianism and a close friend who was a fellow member of the prestigious Manchester Literary and Philosophical Society (MLPS) and a Unitarian minister in Manchester, sought a referral from Gough. There was an opening for a Professor of Mathematics and Natural Philosophy in a new college, an Academie for Dissenters in Manchester. Dalton was recommended and accepted the position in what became known as New College. This decision opened a whole new world of opportunity for Dalton.

A Career in Manchester
Manchester was a rapidly growing city, the second largest in England. It had a free library of 7000 books, a community thirsting for scientific information, a new breed of wealthy citizens occasioned by the industrial revolution, particularly textile barons seeking the latest in chemical processes, and cultural opportunities that were totally lacking in Kendal. Manchester was a mecca for natural philosophers and he made many friends who followed similar pursuits.

Dalton, the only Quaker on the staff of New College was assigned pupils to whom he taught mathematics, mechanics, geometry, algebra, bookkeeping, natural philosophy and chemistry. He was given large comfortable quarters where he could continue his experiments, and marvelled at the 3000 book library of the school.

Part II will appear in the July 1999 issue of "Daltons in History" and will include a summary of the next fifty years of Dalton's life, all spent in Manchester. Note: This account has been abstracted from "John Dalton and the Atomic Theory" by Elizabeth Patterson, 1970. At the end of Part II which covers his fifty years in Manchester, there will be a list of the references to articles on John Dalton that have been published in the DGS Journals.

Robert Hooper of Marblehead, MA a fourth generation colonist, was born in 1709 and outlived three of his four wives. One of his daughters, Ruth, married the Hon.Tristram Dalton of Newburyport, MA at Hooper's mansion in Danvers, MA on October 24, 1758.

Hooper was known as "King Hooper" because he controlled the fishing industry and other business interests in Marblehead. He owned extensive properties in NH and MA, an elegant house in Marblehead as well as the mansion in Danvers which was the scene of "royal parties". Nevertheless he was a philanthropist and a man of integrity who served as "councillor of the Province". He also maintained a warm relationship with his children and grand children. His reply to a letter from his granddaughter, Ruth Dalton, who had married, merchant Lewis Deblois follows.

Marblehead, March 17, 1790
"My Dear Grand Daughter,
The receipt of your most dutiful Letter of the 20th ultimo, gave such a spring to my spirits, that, I could not contain myself, the joy overcame me as it did your kind Grand Mamma; as yt distance between us, & my age advancing, & attended with infirmities, I gave up all hopes of ever seeing you any more in this World --But flattered myself I might hear from you according to your promise, --I am sorry you had the least Idea of presumption as to restrain your pen, when I flattered myself you must be fully convinced what a pleasure it always gave me to hear of the health of all the dear branches of my family & certainly yours is not the lowest in my esteem.
But as you Justly observe we have been and still are 300 miles distance from each other & my advanced age makes it doubtful whether I may ever see you more in this World --your parting from me was next to Burying you --I have not the most distant doubt of your attention, duty & inclination, to show your Great regards for your aged Grand Papa and therefore nothing would give me more pleasure than to hear of the health and prosperity of every branch of my family --I have the pleasure to acquaint you. I have not had for 10 years so favourable a winter and ye Grand Mamma & all my family have enjoyed the same I have not had gout for 11/2 years to give me any confinement, a kind Providence has preserved my whole family from the Influenza & am in hopes it has left the Town. I note the Winter with you as been Very mild, it was so here until February commenced, but since that, We have had severe Cold, light flights of snow, followed by short & small rains, Very little Clear weather & very Chilly, But a General time of health has prevailed.
Your Grand Mamma Joynes me in kind regards to ye better half, Mr. Deblois, & are glad to hear of his health. On the whole may you and I & all our beloved Connections live a life of piety & Vertue remembering that the way of Holyness is the kings high Road to Happiness, for without Holiness no man Can see the Lord -- a Holy life will end in a happy death, & a Glorious Resurrection to life Eternal. I remain with strong affection to you, Mr. Deblois and all the family
Your Tender Grand Father. Robert Hooper.
I have wrote ye good Papa & all ye Sisters under his Cover

The letter provides insights into the inner life of this man who obviously cherished his relationships with his family and was on good terms with his son-in law, Tristram Dalton. His last sentences portend his impending death for less than two months after Hooper wrote this letter, he passed away on May 20, 1790 at 81 years of age.
Source: Hooper Genealogy

Travel Plans to England

In the January 1999, issue of "Daltons in History" there was an invitation to attend the Annual Gathering and Meeting of Daltons in Swaffham, County Norfolk, England on August 7 and 8, 1999. We are repeating the invitation in this issue in the event that you have formulated vacation plans and will be in England in August. Non-members of the DGS are also invited to meet the members who will attend.

On Saturday morning, August 7, there will be a general meeting and it is expected that Lucy Slater will read the will of Francis Dalton, Gentleman, who was a prominent Swaffham resident in the 16th Century. After lunch, there is time to explore or to attend the open air market and then assemble for dinner.

Every Saturday, this tranquil town is transformed by the famous open air market and lively public auction which attracts thousands of people. Swaffham was a fashionable centre in the Georgian period and attracted many of Norfolk's gentry to its great social and sporting events. Lord and Lady Nelson, and Lady Hamilton were frequent visitors.

On Sunday morning there will be a special service for the DGS at the Church of SS Peter and Paul. It is one of the many Medieval churches in East Anglia, with a magnificent hammer-beam roof and carvings depicting the legendary Pedlar of Swaffham, John Chapman. But of high interest to Daltons are the Dalton memorial slabs in the center aisle in front of the altar, and the many Dalton memorials in the graveyard beside the church.

Swaffham is located in the center of many historical sites which you may want to venture and see on Saturday or Sunday afternoon. Castle Acres, the 11th Century Cluniac Priory is only four miles distant and the remains of the Castle is open to the public. Within forty minutes drive are King's Lynn, Sandringham, Norwich, Thetford Forest and Coast, all of historical interest to Daltons.

The area also offers a full range of activities including golf courses, fishing and horse riding. So there is plenty of sight seeing and exploration in this part of East Anglia. For more information about accommodations please send an e-mail to or send a note to Lucy Slater whose address is on the Entitlements page.

Bispham, The Seat of Our Forefathers
When traveling in Lancashire County, be sure to stop for tea or a pint in the quaint village of Bispham where our Daltons resided at the old Bispham Hall. Bispham today is only 1000 acres and resembles the shape of an inverted maple leaf. Its history and current places of interest have been documented in a booklet by William Derek Dalton, DGS member of Parbold and supported by Derek's professional photography. For more information about the booklet, "Bispham, Including a Guide to the Footpaths", contact Derek. E-mail:

from Arthur Whittaker, Kaysville, UT.

DGS member Arthur Whittaker has spread as much information on his mother's maiden name of Dalton to as many sites as possible. It was seen by DGS member, Rodney Dalton. Arthur states that this was a most interesting and productive find since Rodney and Arthur turned out to be cousins.

Rodney started working on his family history about September 1998 when his son, Scott, called and asked if he had any information on his Dalton ancestors. Rodney began surfing the internet, saw the name Dalton, and obtained Arthur's address from a posting. They soon learned that they were connected to a common ancestor, Charles Wakeman Dalton, back four generations.

Rodney lived about 15 miles from Arthur in Ogden, UT. They learned that they were both born in Circleville, UT, yet did not know each other. They finally met and realized that the reason they did not know each other was because Rodney had moved away when he was 3 1/2 years old. Upon comparing their genealogy they found that they were more closely related on the Whittaker side than the Dalton side. Rodney's grandmother was Charlotte Whittaker who was a sister to Arthur's grandfather, Arthur Whittaker. So Arthur and Rodney are second cousins on the Whittaker side and third cousins on the Dalton side.

They are now working together on both the Dalton and Whittaker lines. Arthur finds that Rodney is a fine detective and has found a great deal of information on the lives of both the Dalton and Whittaker ancestors which will supplement information that Arthur has already collected. They plan to write a series of books with the information that they have gathered. If this is your family line you may reach Arthur at: and Rodney may be reached at:

Note: Rodney and Arthur are descendents of the Thomas Dalton line of Pembrey, Wales. See a message from Rodney at the end of the "DGS News" section, this issue.

The Idaho Newspaper Foundation has announced an annual award in honor of Max D. Dalton.

In "Daltons in History", Vol. 1, No. 2, February 1998, there was a story about Mr. Dalton who was killed by squatters on his ranch in Costa Rica in November 1997. Prior to his ranching enterprise, he had operated a milk-testing farm in Meridian, Idaho. (Max Dalton is the father of DGS member, Richard Dalton, Woodside, CA).

In 1980, Dalton asked the Idaho Dairy Commission for their list of names and addresses of all Idaho dairy farmers for a mailing to the list. His request was refused by the Commission on the basis that the list was confidential. Dalton filed a lawsuit to establish his rights to the documents under Idaho's open records law. After much litigation, in 1984, the Supreme Court issued a landmark ruling in Dalton's favor. It reinforced the right of every citizen to have broad, prompt access to any public record in possession of state and local public agencies unless a secrecy exemption specific to that record existed in the law.

Thwarted in their efforts to control public information, Idaho government agencies have put through exemptions for their own records and meetings into Idaho law. Today, prompt, inexpensive citizen access to most pre-Dalton public record files is virtually impossible. The new Max Dalton Open Government Award aims to reward aggressive citizen actions that advance open government in Idaho. It will promote public awareness of the trend toward government secrecy in Idaho as stated by the Idaho Newspaper Foundation.

Nomination of candidates for the annual $1000 Max Dalton Award may be made to the Foundation in Boise, ID.

Note: Max Dalton was a descendent of the Thomas Dalton line of Pembrey, Wales.

The following Dalton entries are to be found in The English Army Lists and Commission Registers, 1666-1714, edited and annotated by Charles Dalton, F. R. G. S. and dedicated to his brother, Lieutenant Colonel James Cecil Dalton, R. A. It was originally edited between 1892-1904.

Colonel Saunderson's Regiment of Foot - 1697
John Dalton to be Ensign to Captain James Brathwayt. Dated Promeleus 31 May.
Placed on half pay in 1698.
Appointed Ensign in Sir Charles Hotham's Regiment of Foot, 25 Mar 1705
Sir Charles Hotham's Newly-Raised Regiment of Foot.
All Commissions were dated at St. James's 25 March 1705.
Ensign John Dalton.
Raised in Yorkshire. Embarked for Portugal in autumn of 1706. Formed part of the Garrison at Alicante which stood a prolonged siege and was taken by the French in 1709. Disbanded in England in September 1713 and the officers placed on half- pay.

The Second Battalion of the Royal (Scots) Regiment of Foot. Commission Register 1709.
Ensign William Dalton, commissioned 14 April 1709 to be Ensign to Captain Thomas Carr.
Commission was signed and sealed by His excellency, the Earl of Pembroke, Lord Lieutenant of Ireland at his House in London, 30 August 1708 for a Regiment of Foot for Colonel William Delaunce.
This Regiment was disbanded in Ireland in 1712. No half- pay list of this Regiment is forthcoming in the Commission Entry Books.
Lieutenant Christopher Dalton was also Commissioned at this time for this same Regiment.

Royal Scots First Regiment of Foot Guards
Dominique Dalton to be Lieutenant to Captain James Hamilton at St. James's, 20 March 1711.
He was probably the son of Peter Dalton by his wife Mary Dominick. (See Chester's Westminster Abbey Registers, p.16). His Commission was renewed by George I in 1715. He was still serving as a Lieutenant in 1728.

Entries in Griffiths Valuation of Ireland, 1852-53.
The following Daltons were land owners.
James Dalton, Kilcommon, Wicklow, 1853
James Dalton, Kilcommon, Wicklow, 1853
John Dalton, Bray, Wicklow, 1853
John Dalton, Kilmacanoge, Wicklow, 1852
Joseph Dalton, Moyne, Wicklow, 1853
Patrick Dalton, Mullinacuff, Wicklow, 1853
Richard Dalton, Preban, Wicklow, 1853
Thomas Dalton, Bray, Wicklow, 1852
William Dalton, Kilcommon, Wicklow, 1853.
There was also an entry for Nicholas Dalton, Castlemary, Cork, Cloyne
Diocesan Wills, 1793

Australian Daltons in the Boer War - 1899-1902
The citations are from Murray's Register with appropriate page number. Each listing gives name of unit, where the individual served and other vital statistics for each
Dalton, A. E., Tasmania, pg. 574
Dalton, C., Victoria, pg. 266
Dalton, C. S., New South Wales, pg. 152
Dalton, J. P., Queensland, pg. 534
Dalton, R. J., Victoria, pg. 310
Dalton, S. A., Victoria, pg. 261
Dalton, W., New South Wales, pg. 168
Dalton, W., New South Wales, pg. 91
Dalton, W. J., Victoria, pg. 312
Dalton, W. J., Victoria, pg. 239

Notes from the Norfolk Records Society, contributed by Lucy J. Slater.
Vol. XVIII, Bishop Redman's Visitation of 1597.
P.60, Court of 4th Nov 1597 held at Swaffham. John Dalton and John Taylor, churchwardens of Clenchwarton, in the Deanery of Lynn Marshland made a plea for a new psalter and a table of the ten commandments. Granted.
P.94, Ann of Wimbotsham, widow of Jasper Blage, deceased, (connected to Daltons), hath not received communion these xij monthes. Warned.
P.108, Elizabeth Turner and William Dalton of Shelfhanger accused of incontinency. Non comp ideo excomm. (They did not repent so were excommunicated).

There has been a query regarding the frequency of military-oriented information in "Daltons in History". When one considers that the family estate was generally inherited by the eldest male, the usual lines of occupation open to the remaining sons were either to earn a living in the military or to become a vicar in the church. Thus far, Daltons who joined the military seem to have outnumbered those who became vicars. Perhaps there is something special in our make-up which is expressed in an old English saying, "a Dalton never missed a good war".

If DGS members have not already received the Spring Journal, it will arrive within a few days. We remind you that renewal notices have been sent out and we look forward to hearing from you.

We now have a very limited supply of Dalton Memorabilia which was first offered last Fall. There are five each of the Dalton engraved copper Letter Opener and Salver, and the silver-plated miniature Picture Frame. For further information contact:

Is there anyone who has access to Abstracts of Game Notices in "The Irish Farmer's Journal and Weekly Intelligencer", 1822, 1823? They cover several counties and include the name and location of each person who applied for a Game Certificate, and the names of Gamekeepers of the manor in their respective district. This information can be useful in the absence of other records.

From DGS member Rodney Dalton of Utah and Leslie Crunk of OR, we have an account of the tragic shooting at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City in April 1999. This concerns their cousin Jean Ebling Beede, wife of John Beede, daughter of Louise Smith Ebling and granddaughter of Voyla Dalton Smith who was an early member of the DGS.

"Jean and John were in the foyer with Nellie Leighton of Oakland, CA and were walking out of the exit door as the shooter came in. They heard a shot and saw Nellie slumped over the desk. John ran back into the building and Jean was shot at twice through the glass door. She ran towards the museum building and yelled at two bus loads of children to get them out of the way. John, who was in the library was shot at three times but was not hit. Jean watched as they brought out three wounded people; the security guard, a library patron and the shooter. Nellie is in the hospital and will recover from a bullet wound in the face."

Let's all help Rodney with his latest Dalton project! Rodney has extracted all emigrants to America from available sources and in May he began collecting additional emigrants from readers of the Dalton-L Forum. If you have a Dalton relative who arrived in America between 1620 and 1900, and have not submitted the information to Rodney, please do so. He had collected about 75 emigrants from published sources and has added about 100 more through the cooperation of the Forum readers. When he has finished compiling, he will circulate the data. You may reach Rodney Dalton: