October 2007.  Cousin Cheryl and I were visiting Saint Bernards Cemetery in Lyon Mountain studying the tombstone for Wilhelmina King.  She was an aunt, daughter of my grandparents Xavier and Emma King, who had died as an infant in 1903.  Something got me to look down, and this footstone looked back at me.  Patrick J. King 1880-1917.   The stone has the same basic design as those for Uncle Dave and Aunt Adeline, Xavier and Emma who are buried in another part of the cemetery.    The thought was planted in me  that this had to be Uncle Patrick.

The Chazy Lake King patriarch, at least of ‘our branch’ of the Chazy Lake Kings, Old Sullivan King had four sons: David, Xavier, Wilfred and Patrick.  Xavier’s brothers were actually Great-Uncles to me but I recall that they were always referred to in my upbringing as Uncles for they each had  lived a good share  of their life in Chazy Lake.   I had heard the stories of Uncle Dave being a kind and noble man whereas Uncle Wilfred and Grandfather Xavier were shall I say strong-willed men quick to let you know exactly what they thought.  I knew something of their wives and children.  But Uncle Patrick was a mystery.  Yes, there was an Uncle Patrick, but that’s all I knew.

I got the genealogy bug and rediscovering Patrick became a mission.  I’ve learned that Patrick John King was born 07 April 1879 and was baptized Joseph Patrick Roi, son of Séraphin Roi (Sullivan King) and Maria Lagacé (Mary Miller Legacy) at Saint Philomena Church, Churubusco, NY.  I should note that the priest used the French family names within the baptismal document that was written in Latin, but  Sullivan King was already using the anglicized form of his name back to the 1860 census.  A Joseph or a Jean-Baptiste was often added to a boy’s baptismal name and many girls were a Marie.   The family had moved to Chazy Lake by the 1880 census when Patrick was a year old, so the birth date on his tombstone is off by a year.  Patrick probably lived with Sullivan and Mary and worked the family farm into his twenties.  He married a Chazy Lake girl Loretta Willett around 1906 and by 1910 Patrick and Loretta had a farm on the Rainbow Lake Road near Gabriels, NY.  They had four children:  Loretta M. King born about 1907, Mary A. King 1908, Emery B. King 1910 and Leo F. King 1913.  Patrick’s older sister Delia had married James Tague. They lived just up the road, and the family seniors Sullivan and Mary lived next door to James and Delia.  The other brothers David, Xavier and Wilfred stayed closer to Chazy Lake.   Tragedy hit in 1917.  Patrick fell ill and was paralyzed perhaps from a stroke. He died five days later on his birthday April 07th   just having turned 38 and was buried next to his niece Wilhelmina on April 10th in Lyon Mountain.

I had to continue the search now that Patrick had taken shape in my understanding of the family tree.  What happened to Patrick’s family after his death?  Old Sullivan and Mary as well as the Tagues moved to Troy, NY.  Patrick’s wife Loretta continued to live for a few years in the Gabriels area and married George Sawyer another former Chazy Lake boy.  The Sawyers had lived next door to Sullivan and Mary in Chazy Lake!  The Sawyer/King family lived for a time in Norwood, Rouses Point, Ogdensburg and Potsdam.  I went to college and taught school in Saint Lawrence County for forty years and never knew that I had ‘King relatives’ who had lived in that area.  The eldest daughter Loretta married Orville Betters.  They lived in Saranac Lake, and Loretta passed away  22 March 1989.  The second daughter Mary died in 1927 following a swimming mishap in the Saint Lawrence River not far from where I later lived.  The first son Emery died in 1919 from peritonitis and is buried in Gabriels.  The youngest son Leo lived during the ‘30s in the Norwood area, married,  had two daughters and was in the Navy in World War II.   Leo married a second time, lived in Binghamton and fathered a third daughter.   Patrick’s wife Loretta Sawyer lived in the ‘40s and into the ‘50s on Bay Street in Potsdam.  I had to have walked passed the house almost daily when I was a student at Potsdam State and drove by many times through the years I lived in the area.  I have to wonder if the family ties went full circle when I stood at Patrick’s grave last fall.

If you happen across this page and have roots back to Patrick King or his family please share your thoughts with us.  You’ll find some pictures of Patrick and family on another page of this site.  As for his personality, well, some of the articles that follow on this page tell me he was definitely a Chazy Lake King.

With respects from a great-nephew.

Donald Sullivan King


November 2017
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