THE BUNTING FAMILY OF THE EIGHTH WARD
Over the years that I have been researching Camden and building web pages, I kept running across members of this family in news articles and such. I decided to tie it all together as best possible, and with the help of a Bunting descendant, Susanne Mick-Thurston, this became possible.
The Bunting brothers, Richard and Thomas, emigrated to America from Northern Ireland in the 1850s, settled in what became Camden's Eighth Ward, in the vicinity of Broadway and Ferry Avenue, and raised large families there. The Buntings maintained a continuous presence in their neighborhood from the 1850s into the 1930s.
|Richard & Margaret Bunting|
Richard Bunting was the son of Richard Bunting and Mary Courtney. He was born in Ireland in September of 1822. Richard Bunting married Margaret McKee in 1854. The Buntings were Anglicans, and as Margaret was born in Belfast it is probable that Richard Bunting also was born in what today is known as Northern Ireland.
Richard Bunting came to the United States in 1855. His wife joined him in 1857, and according to the 1870 Census a daughter, Sarah was born shortly thereafter. Younger brother Thomas came in 1859. A sister, Jane, had also come to the USA, and was living in Philadelphia in 1870. Two other sisters, Anne and Sally apparently remained in the United Kingdom.
Richard Bunting was living in the vicinity of Broadway and Ferry Avenue as early as the summer of 1857, as evidenced by his involvement with the Church of Our Saviour, the Episcopal church eventually built at Broadway and Viola Street.
In his History of Camden County New Jersey, George Reeser Prowell wrote the following:
In September, 1857, Mr. Thomas Lyle, a candidate for Holy Orders, became Sunday lecturer, holding service every Sunday afternoon in an upper room, specially set apart and furnished for that purpose, in the house of John Otten, the rector of St. John's preaching once a month, and celebrating the communion once in two months. In September, 1859, steps were taken to organize a parish, to be known as the Church of Our Saviour, Stockton, and at a meeting held for this purpose the following were elected as wardens and vestrymen: Senior Warden, John Hare Otten; Junior Warden, Henry Davis; Vestrymen, Charles Drake, O.J. Search, Henry B. Wilson, Gabriel Johnson, Richard Bunting and James Green.
Richard Bunting is known to have served as Vestryman for the Church of Our Saviour in the 1880s.
On June 20, 1859 he had some business with the Philadelphia Savings Fund Society. Their records state that his occupation was express driver and that he was living in Stockton, New Jersey... which confusing as may be was NOT in the Town of Stockton (present day East Camden, Cramer Hill, or Merchantville)... which comprised the area in the immediate vicinity of Broadway and Ferry Avenue, then Newton Township.
The 1860 Census and the 1870 Census confirms his living in Newton Township, most of which, in 1871, was merged into Camden. Although City Directories were published for Camden prior to 1871, Newton Township residents were not listed. Richard Bunting first appears in the 1872 City Directory, as does his younger brother, Thomas Bunting.
The 1860 Census shoed the Buntings in Newton Township with daughters Sarah, 2; and Mary Jane, 1. The 1870 Census shows Richard and Margaret Bunting and their children, Sarah, 13; Mary Jane, 11; William, 9; Emma, 6; Ellwood, 5; Henry, 4; and Ida M., 1. Other sources have their ages as 15, 10, 9, 8, and Ida May being born in 1871.
Regarding the ages of the children, what can be determined from available records exists are as follows. On May 11, 1857, Mrs. M. Bunting in Newton Township gave birth. No name was listed for the child, this would be Sarah. Mary Jane Bunting was born in February of 1859 or 1860. William Bunting was born on November 29, 1860. On September 11, 1862 in Newton Township, Margaret Bunting gave birth to Emma Amelia. Ellwood Courtney Mills Bunting was born on October 2, 1864. Henry Bunting was born in August of 1866 and Ida M. Bunting was born in 1870.
Also living with the family in 1860 through 1870 was brother Thomas Bunting. Both of the Bunting men as listed their occupations as cab men in 1860 and as express driver in 1870.
The 1872 City Directory shows Richard Bunting at "Sixth Street and Ferry Road", that is to say, at South 6th Street and Ferry Avenue, and still working as an express driver. His brother Thomas Bunting had married Alleine Louisa Buehler of Philadelphia on August 17, 1871. The young couple settled in at 428 Webster Street, just west of Broadway. Thomas was still was following the same profession as his brother. The story of the Thomas and Alleine Bunting branch of the family will be told elsewhere on this page.
Richard Bunting and family were still at South 6th Street and Ferry Avenue when the 1874 City Directory was published. By the time the 1876 edition was compiled, they had moved to 1644 Broadway, the northeast corner of Broadway and Van Hook Street. 1644 Broadway would remain the home of the Buntings through 1913. Within a year, Margaret Bunting had opened up a dry goods store at this location, a business that she, her husband and family conducted until shortly after her passing in December of 1910.
The 1890 Historical and Industrial Review of Camden, New Jersey reads as follows:
DRY GOODS AND NOTIONS,
AMONG the best known and most favorably spoken of houses in this section may be that of Mrs. R. Bunting. This estimable lady opened this store some years ago, and has met with the greatest success. The store is a corner one with a frontage of 20 feet and a depth of 35 feet. It is fitted in the best manner.
A heavy stock of Dry Goods, Notions, Hosiery, Underwear, Ribbons Fancy Goods, and small wares is carried; in fact, all the many articles that come under this head. Three capable and skillful assistants are constantly employed.
Mrs. Bunting has been an esteemed and respected resident of this city for the past thirty-six years.
Mr. Richard Bunting has been in the express business nearly forty years and is one of the oldest businessmen.
Daughters Sarah and Mary Jane "Jennie" Bunting married before the Census was taken in 1880. Sarah married Charles Jones Cranmer and moved to Ellisburg in nearby Delaware Township (present-day Cherry Hill, New Jersey). The marriage produced two children, Edward R. Cranmer and Mildred Cranmer.
Mary Jane "Jennie" Bunting was 20 years old when she married James F. Sharp, a man 20 years her senior with three young daughters from his first wife, he formr Sarah Buchanan. The 1880 Census shows them at 266 Liberty Street with daughters Ida M., 10; Susan M., 8; and Amanda, 6. Jennie Sharp would bear three daughters of her own, Evelyn C., Maguerite E., and Jennie B. Sharp. James F. Sharp, a Civil War veteran, had served from May 1861 with Company H, 20th Pennsylvania Regiment, a three-month regiment, then served as fireman on transport boats for the rest of war. After the war he served briefly as a ferryboat fireman, then spent three years at sea as an Assistant Engineer on Clyde Line ships. He had become a ferry boat captain by 1880, and later became Ferrymaster of the Delaware River Ferry Company, operating from the foot of Kaighn Avenue. He was for many years the treasurer of the Church of Our Saviour. From 1900 through December of 1906, when James F. Sharp passed, the family lived at 440 Royden Street, a corner building also known as 603 West Street. Mary Jane "Jennie" Sharp and daughters Margaret and Jennie were listed at 603 West Street when the 1910 Census was enumerated. She lived with her stepdaughter Ida in her last years. She passed away on April 1, 1931 at 634 Colford Avenue in Collingswood, New Jersey.
Emma Amelia Bunting taught school for a short time in the late 1870s. She is listed as a schoolteacher in the 1878 City Directory. Only unmarried women were permitted to teach in those days, and if it had not already ended, it did when she married, some time after the 1880 Census. She married William Mills, who had a meat business with his brother Walter at 1596 Broadway. This marriage produced four children, Elwood B., J. William, Evelyn, and Florence Mills. The family remained on Broadway into 1918, then moved to 206 Collings Avenue in Collingswood, New Jersey. William Mills passed away in the 1920s, Emma Amelia Mills died on January 10, 1935.
The 1880 Census shows Richard and Margaret Bunting at 1644 Broadway with children William, Emma, Ellwood, Henry, and Ida. By this time he worked as a "hack driver" apparently taking passengers from the Kaighn's Point Ferry at the foot of Kaighn Avenue to Broadway and Ferry Avenue and other stops and back again.
Richard Bunting's sons first appear in City Directories in 1883. William and Ellwood worked as machinists, while Henry followed the blacksmith's trade. William went to sea as a fireman, shortly after the 1885 Camden City Directory was published. It is very likely that he went west as an original crew member of the United States Lighthouse Service's tender the USLHS Madroņo, which was laid down in 1884 by John H. Dialogue, Camden, New Jersey and was commissioned USLHS Madroņo September 14, 1885. She was designed as an inspection tender for service on the west coast as a replacement for the tender Shubrick. She arrived in San Francisco, California, in January of 1886.
William L. Bunting stayed in San Francisco, first appearing in City Directories in 1887 as a fireman aboard the Madroņo. Over the years to become a marine engineer, serving aboard tugboats and other steam powered vessels. He married, and his wife Virginia bore two sons, Carl, born in New Jersey in 1892 during a visit, and Elwood, born in 1896 in California. Virginia Bunting passed January 5, 1921, her husband joined her in 1940.
Ellwood and Henry Bunting lived at home through 1885, after which time Henry moved out, most likely when he married Clara Taylor. He made his home at 1725 South 6th Street, first appearing there in the 1888 Camden City Directory. He had previously worked for Espin Ashton at 1224 Mechanic Street before opening a blacksmith shop of is own at 1135 Mt. Ephraim Avenue. The shop may have been short-lived, and Henry and his family moved around quite a bit in the early 1890s, The 1890 Directory has him at 603 Cherry Street, 1891 at 270 Mechanic Street, 1892 at 217 Chestnut Street. In 1893 Henry Bunting and family moved back to 1725 South 6th Street where he remained through 1910. In 1895 he again went into business for himself, at the intersection of South 2nd Street and Ferry Avenue. He only advertised in City Directories in 1896.
Clara bore four children, Edna in 1886, Blanche in 1889, LeRoy E. in 1893, and Ralph H. Bunting in 1896. Sadly, Clara Taylor Bunting passed away on April 17, 1899.
The 1912 Directory shows Henry Bunting at 1136 Cooper Street, where he stayed through 1917. Henry Bunting next appears in City Directories in 1923, once again at 1725 South 6th Street, where he stayed into the 1930s. Sometime during the 1930s Henry Bunting retired to Clay, Florida, where he passed away in 1948.
Ellwood Courtney Mills Bunting married Maudelena Hess on November 6, 1889 at the Church of Our Saviour on Broadway in Camden. The young couple lived at 1714 Ferry Avenue until late in 1900, when they moved to 515 Van Hook Street, where Elwood would live out his days. It should be noted that 515 Van Hook Street was adjacent to 1644 Broadway, a corner property
The Buntings had four children while they were living on Ferry Avenue, William Jacob, in 1890; Walter Mills, in 1893, Raymond James, in 1896, Marguerite L., in 1898. Ellwood Bunting worked for many years as a machinist, later he rose to management, working as the superintendent of a stove factory in 1920. He also served briefly as a justice of the peace. He passed away in Camden on November 5, 1926. Maudelena Hess Bunting moved with daughter Marguerite and son-in-law Thomas Kitts. They lived in Haddon Township in April of 1930. Maudelena Hess Bunting passed away on November 28, 1936 in Haddonfield, New Jersey.
Ida. M Bunting never married, and lived with her parents all through their lives. She first appeared in Camden City Directories as a teacher in 1891. She taught at the Richard Fetters School through at least 1903.
1900 Census shows Richard, Margaret, daughter Ida M., and 19 year-old grandson Edward Cranmer at 1644 Broadway. Although 78 years old, Richard still listed an occupation, as a "carter". Ida M. Bunting worked as a teacher at the Richard Fetters School on South 3rd Street. Edward Cranmer learned the butcher's trade, most likely at his Aunt Emma's husand's slaughterhouse 1596 Broadway, and stayed at 1644 Broadway through 1906.
Richard Bunting died in 1905. When the Census was taken in 1910 Margaret Bunting was still living at 1644 Broadway, with daughter Ida M. Bunting and granddaughter Ida. M. Sharp. By that time Ida Bunting was teaching at Camden Manual Training and High School on Newton Avenue at Haddon Avenue.
Margaret Bunting died on December 16, 1910. Ida M. Bunting wound up the dry goods business after her mother's passing. She was still listed at 1644 Broadway in the 1913 Camden City Directory, but does not appear in any later editions or in the 1920 Census.
Many years after the Buntings were gone, 1644 Broadway became the home of Ackerle's Bakery
Thomas and Alleine Bunting
Thomas and Alleine Bunting lived at 428 Webster Street, just west of Broadway, from the time they were married until 1882. The 1883 City Directory shows that the Buntings had moved to 1800 Broadway, the corner of Broadway and Ferry Avenue, where the family maintained a presence until the 1920s. Thomas Bunting for the most part worked as a express driver, however, he ventured out into other lines of work from time to time. He served as a constable from 1880 to 1882, then opened a grocery at 1800 Broadway shortly before the 1883 Directory was compiled. That did not last and the 1883 edition shows that he was working as a watchman. He worked as a driver again in the late 1880s. The Directories from 1890 through 1892 state that he was involved with "furniture cars". After that he returned to driving, sometimes carrying passengers as his brother did, other times making deliveries as an express driver. Alleine Louisa Bunting passed away on March 7, 1910, Thomas on December 18, 1919. They were buried at Harleigh Cemetery in Camden.
Thomas Bunting and Alleine Bunting were blessed with nine children, seven of whom lived to adulthood. The eldest was Edwin C. Bunting, who was born on July 18, 1872 and who sadly died on February 3, 1888. Francis Wallace "Frank" Bunting was born on October 31, 1874. Charles Orlando Bunting was born on September 4, 1877, followed by Alliene Bunting on October 28, 1879, Thomas William Bunting on January 9, 1881, twins John Marcus Bunting and Walter Bunting on July of 1885, and fraternal twins Clarence Bunting and Linda Bunting, born on May 1, 1887.
Frank W. Bunting first appears in Camden City Directories in 1894, living with his parents at 1800 Broadway. He is listed as a baggage master in the 1894 and 1895 Directories for the Philadelphia & Reading Railroad, which reorganized as the Reading Railroad in 1896. The 1896 Directory shows Frank W. Bunting working as an assistant baggage master, then apparently came back to New Jersey to again work as a baggage master. The 1898 City Directory shows that he had moved to Atlantic City to work as a baggage agent for the Atlantic City Railroad, a subsidiary of the Reading. He moved back to the Broadway address in 1908. Frank W. Bunting retired from the Reading Railroad in the 1930s. In 1909 Frank W. Bunting married Mary Eden Cornelius in Manhattan. There were two children, The couple made their home in Haddon Heights, New Jersey from the 1910s through the 1940s. The Buntings had two children, Francis W. Bunting and Dorothea Bunting.
Charles Orlando Bunting first appears in Camden's city directories in 1895, living at family home on Broadway and working as a telegraph operator for the Philadelphia & Reading Railroad. He kept that position through at least 1903. Charles O. Bunting next appears in City Directories in 1906 working as a clerk, although who for is unknown. He married Louise Aitken Monkhouse on November 14, 1906 in Philadelphia. The 1910 Census shows that he was living in Haddon Heights with his wife and sister-in-law Charlotte. A daughter, Beatrice was born in 1911, but died in 1919, quite possibly a victim of the Spanish influenza pandemic. The Buntings lived in Haddon Heights into the 1930s. During World War I Charles O. Bunting worked as business administrator for the U.S. Government in Washington D.C. A son, Bruce R. Bunting, was born on July 13, 1923. The Buntings separated in 1934, and sadly, Second Lieutenant Bruce R. Bunting was killed in action while on a bombing mission on September 10, 1944. Charles O. Bunting made his home at the Stevens Building at 306 Broadway from the 1930s through at least June of 1949. He passed away in 1958.
John Marcus Bunting is recorded in the New Jersey State Archives as being born on July 30, 1885. He apparently died almost immediately after birth, as the 1900 Census states that their were only eight Bunting children born, and only one who had died, that is to say, his existence is not acknowledged by the Census.
Walter Roscoe Bunting lived with his parents and siblings at 1800 Broadway until some time after the 1916 Directory was published. When he registered for the draft in September of 1918 he was working as a fireman (boiler operator) at the E.I. DuPont factory at Carney's Point, New Jersey and living in nearby Penns Grove. Walter R. Bunting had apparently married in 1916. By the end of 1919 he had moved to Bristol, Pennsylvania. The 1920 Census shows Walter Bunting, his wife Ethel, and daughters Ethel and Anna May living on Beaver Dam Road in Bristol. The Buntings are known to have been living in Bristol as late as 1940. Walter Bunting came back to Camden in the early 1940s to take a job at the New York Shipbuilding Corporation shipyard. When he registered for the draft in the spring of 1942, he gave his address as 424 White Horse Pike in Haddon Heights, New Jersey. He probably meant 425 White Horse Pike, as this was the home of his siblings Alleine, Linda, Claence and Dr. Thomas Bunting. Walter Roscoe Bunting died in Pennsylvania in 1962.
Alleine Bunting first appears in Camden's City Directories in 1901, working as a schoolteacher. She was still teaching when the Census was taken when the 1931 Camden City Directory was compiled. This directory indicates that she was teaching at the John W. Mickle School at South 6th and Van Hook Streets, and it is highly likely that her entire carreer was spent teaching at that school. Along with brothers Thomas W. and Clarence, and sister Linda, she never married. She and her siblings lived at 1800 Broadway after their father died in 1919. The Buntings remained at that address until 1926, when the sold the property to the South Camden Trust Company and moved to 425 White Horse Pike in Haddon Heights. Alleine Bunting is known to have sailed to Bermuda in 1921 and to Veracruz, Mexico in the summer of 1941. Alleine Bunting passed away in 1959.
Thomas W. Bunting first appears in City Directories in 1902, like older brother Charles, working as a telegraph operator. He went back to school prior to the compilation of the 1908 City Directory, and by the time the 1908 edition was being assembled, became a doctor of dentistry. He practiced out of the 1800 Broadway address and moved his practice to 306 Broadway when the family home was sold. Dr. Bunting is known to have sailed to Havana in 1927, and to have visited Key West, Florida as part of that trip. He died in December of 1960.
Clarence Bunting first appeared in City Directories in 1904, initially working as a telegraph operator, he worked briefly as a clerk before finally finding his niche with he Reading Railroad as a signalman. His last years with the railroad saw him working out of one of the signal towers the rail line operated. With America fully involved in World War I, he went into the United States Army on November 28, 1917 and was honorably discharged with the rank of sergeant on August 7, 1919 having served overseas with Company D of the 414th Telegraph Battalion. The 414th Telegraph Battalion was a Signal Corps unit, composed of employees of the Erie and Philadelphia & Reading railroads for telegraph and signal system service in France. This battalion was known as "The Galloping Four Fourteenth," and there was a booklet published devoted to its history. Returning to work on the railroad, Clarence Bunting retired from the railroad not long after the 1940 City Directory was published. Clarence Bunting passed away on April 3, 1949 and was buried at Harleigh Cemetery in Camden.
Linda May Bunting also never married, and apparently never entered the workforce. She lived her entire life with her parents and siblings. The youngest daughter, she also outlived all of her siblings. Linda Bunting is known to have sailed to Europe in 1927, returning to New York on September 3 aboard the S.S. Leviathan which had departed from Cherbourg, France on August 30. Still a resident of Haddon Heights up until the time of her passing, she died in December of 1980..
Of the third generation of the Buntings in Camden, a number are are of particular interest. Charles O. Bunting's son Bruce R. Bunting, as previously mentioned, died while serving over seas with the United States Army air corps in 1944. Of Elwood Mills Courtney Bunting's three sons, Walter Mills Bunting and Raymond James Bunting both had interesting careers, Walter as on of the U.S. Postal Service's early mail pilots, where he met an untimely death in a plane crash. His story is told on this web-page: www.dvrbs.com/People/CamdenPeople-WalterMBunting.htm
Raymond James Bunting, like the rest of his family, attended the John W. Mickle School where he graduated from in 1912 and most likely went on to graduate from Camden Manual Training and High School. He was an electrician by trade, and worked for many years as an electrical engineer with many years of service at the Philadelphia Navy Yard. Married to Edna Eliza Phillips, he lived at 718 Cedar Street in North Camden from 1920 to at least 1935, then moved to Pennsauken with children Raymond, Jane, and Sandra. Sadly, Raymond's son, Raymond Walter Bunting, died in a plane crash, while serving with the United States Navy during World War II. The other of Ellwood's sons, William J. Bunting, left Camden prior to the 1920 Census and lived out his days in the Philadelphia suburbs. Ellwood Bunting's daughter Marguerite married Thomas S. Kitts in 1924. They lived with her parents at 515 Van Hook Street through 1927. By 1935 they had moved to Haddon Township, New Jersey. Thomas and Marguerite divorced in the 1940s. He eventually moved to Somerdale. New Jersey, where he resided at the time of hs passing in 1968. Marguerite Bunting passed away in Washington D.C. on March 9, 1983.
Sarah Bunting Cranmer's son Edward Richard Cranmer remained in the area and worked as a butcher for many years. He was living in Pennsauken, New Jersey as late as the spring of 1942.
Henry Bunting had two sons, Leroy and Ralph. Leroy Bunting was killed in an industrial accident at the Hog Island Navy Yard on December 30, 1919. Ralph Bunting who had worked as a bookkeeper for the R.H. Comey company in Camden had taken a position with them in New York by the fall of 1918 and lived there until his death in 1938. He was a member of the New York National Guard up until the time of passing, holding the rank of Captain.
Emma's Bunting Mills' son, Elwood Bunting Mills, went into the family business, which had been renamed the Mills Provision Company, in his 20s. He married Florence Kobus, daughter of well-known Camden businessman Anthony Kobus in 1915. The family, which included a son Elwood Jr. and a daughter, Frances, lived in Collingswood at the Kobus home in 1920, then moved to Haddonfield by 1930. Elwood B. Mills remained in the meat business in one capacity or another another as late as 1942, and the family was still in Haddonfield as late as 1997.
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