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JOHN LOWRIE and family in the year 1792 immigrated to the United States from Edinburgh, Scotland, where he had been engaged in the banking business. They first located in Huntingdon county, Pennsylvania, but shortly afterward removed to the border of Venango and Butler counties, where they made their permanent home. They were intensely Presbyterian, and John Lowrie was for many years a prominent figure in the Scrubgrass Presbyterian church. In its cemetery he and his wife are buried, both having attained the age of nearly one hundred years. His eldest son, Matthew B. Lowrie, married and moved with his family to Pittsburgh, which he made his permanent home. He soon became an important factor in the government of the city and was so frequently elected mayor that he received the cognomen of "Mayor" Lowrie.
Matthew B. Lowrie’s eldest son, Walter H. Lowrie, was a lawyer of eminence and well-known in this community. He was for many years judge of the courts in this commonwealth, was judge of the supreme court of the state from 1857 to 1863, six years of this time as chief justice. He was judge in the Crawford county district at the time of his decease. Reverend John M. Lowrie, D.D.; James A. Lowrie, M.D.; Mrs. Hervey Childs; Mrs. Doctor Courtney, and Mrs. Reverend Wiley were members of this family. Walter Lowrie, the second son of John Lowrie, was the most generally known throughout the country. When twenty-seven years old he was elected state senator, which place he filled for seven years. He was then elected to the United States senate. At the expiration of his term, in 1825, he was elected secretary of the United States senate, which position he filled for twelve years. At that period he was elected secretary of the Presbyterian board of foreign missions. He resigned his place in the senate and accepted this position, which he filled thirty years, till the time of his decease at the age of eighty-four. The eldest son of Walter Lowrie, John C. Lowrie, D.D., and wife were two of the first foreign missionaries sent by the Presbyterian church to India. After the lapse of two years impaired health compelled him to return to this country. He was then elected assistant and is now senior secretary of the board of foreign missions. Reverend Walter M. Lowrie of the same family went as missionary to China and in 1847 was murdered by Chinese pirates. A younger brother, Reverend Reuben P. Lowrie, went as missionary to China, where he spent the remainder of his life. Recently a son of Reuben P. Lowrie, a clergyman, returned to China as a missionary, accompanied by his mother and sister. Of this family there were three other members: Matthew S., attorney-at-law, of Butler, Pennsylvania; Robert J., attorney-at-law, Huntingdon, Pennsylvania; and Mrs. Samuel Baird, of Pittsburgh.
Anne Lowrie, eldest daughter of John Lowrie, was born and reared to adult age in Edinburgh, Scotland. She immigrated with her father and was married to Andrew Porter, of Richland township, where they resided during his life. Their son and daughter, Andrew and Anne (also the mother, though over seventy-five years old), went as missionaries to the Chippewa Indians. John L. Porter, eldest son of Andrew and Anne Porter, was a mill owner and surveyor. He married Nancy Stevens and reared a family, making this locality their permanent home.
Mary Lowrie, daughter of John Lowrie, was married to Andrew McCasliun, of Emlenton. He was engaged in mercantile pursuits many years, and was at one time sheriff of Venango county. He built and operated the Rockland furnace, in Rocklland township, Venango county.
Elizabeth Lowrie, daughter of John Lowrie, was born in the city of Edinburgh, Scotland, and was twelve years old when the family immigrated to this country. She was married to John Stevens, of what is now Sandy Creek township, Venango county, who built the first mill on Big Sandy, at the crossing of the Franklin and Pittsburgh road. They made that locality their home during his lifetime. They had two children: Nancy and John L.; Nancy was married to John L. Porter, of Richland township, and John L. died at the residence of his mother when a young man. The widow, Mrs. Elizabeth Stevens, was married to Robert S. Whann, of whom an account is given in connection with Mineral township.