Genealogy of the Woodcock Valley
How It All Began:
It all began with a city girl from Altoona, who fell in love with a country boy on the Old Raystown...
I became interested in genealogy after the death of my mom in 1998. With her unexpected passing, I realized how little I actually knew about her family and her roots. She was the city girl from Altoona. She told me her family was all from Altoona. She really didn't care much for Huntingdon County - other than that was how she met my dad. When I actually started researching her family, I traced every line of her family right back to Huntingdon County, with the execption of one, which went to Juniata County.
Some of her family lines include Kinch, Watson, Irwin, Cole, and Taylor from Huntingdon County and Creighton, Showers, and Hockenberry from Juniata County. Imagine my surprise, that while my mom may have been raised in Altoona, her family certainly was not from the city originally!
The simple act of researching her side of the family turned into something much larger. When I started researching my dad's side of the family, which is deep in the ridges of the Woodcock Valley area, I became intrigued by how all of the families in this small valley interconnected with each other. Soon, I was exploring many names from the Valley, regardless of how distantly they tied into my direct lines.
While this website is dedicated to the families of the Woodcock Valley area, I will also share information that I have collected from the surrounding counties. In particular, my mom's family migrated from the Spruce Creek area of Huntingdon County into neighboring Blair County to work for the Pennsylvania Railroad, as did many family members from the Woodcock Valley.
I have transcribed many cemeteries in the Woodcock Valley area, and I will share those transcriptions here, as well as many obituaries that were shared with me by the late Annie Whiteman. I will also post family photos from my various lines and from local family names. I encourage others to add to the obituary and photo collections. I also welcome your inquiries and family tree information on the families of the Woodcock Valley.
If you are reseraching a particular family, please use the contact form or e-mail me below. My husband and I both have strong connections to the Valley, so chances are one of us will have ties to who you may be researching.
Deb (Fisher) Riley
To contact me
You can also visit my personal family database at
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