Riker Family Buried at Green-Wood Cemetery

J.L. Riker’s Monument at Green Wood Cemetery

“… There has been a great deal of conflicting information about how many children Anna E. Riker Crump (J.L. Riker’s daughter – Ed.) had. I used the standard search engines and got very confused over the whole thing. Then a cousin sent me a handwritten list of Anna’s children where she wrote their names and dates of birth and signed it “My Children –  Anna E. Crump”  That was like a piece of gold to me… But of course this wasn’t enough for me. So I ponied up the money to pay Green Wood Cemetery to tell me who… is buried in the family plot there. The attached documents (I have presented Col. Riker’s one, below – Ed.) are from Green Wood. I received this back in December, but getting in touch with you about everything to do with John Lafayette Riker got to be a most fascinating diversion for a time, and now I’m back to this original issue about the 15 Crump children.

“I can say for sure, from the mother’s own list, that she did in fact have 15 children. Many of these people in the attached documents are children of Sam and Anna. But also buried in the same lot is John Lafayette Riker, who was Anna’s father of course, and also his brother, Charles Bodle Riker, who applied for the Civil War pension to take care of Anna after her father died when she was almost 14 years old.

“In addition, there is one mystery person, Mary J. Van Orsdale. She may well be a cousin, and if memory serves, she was listed as living in the Crump household…I’d have to check that to be sure, but here is why I think she was related. It was Captain John Van Arsdale who is my 7th generation ancestor, who fought all seven years of the Revolutionary War. Here’s how he is related to me. John Lafayette Riker’s wife was Ann Eliza Riker. They were first cousins. John’s parents were James Riker Sr. and Elizabeth Van Arsdale. Elizabeth’s parents were Captain John Van Arsdale and Mary (Polly) Crawford Van Arsdale. So clearly this Van Arsdale name is a family name. I just haven’t put my attention on figuring out how Mary J. Van Orsdale, who is buried in the family plot, is related. She was 72 and a widow when she died in 1887. Since the Crumps already had many children, and Anna’s father, buried in this lot, she became a part of it. One day I’ll sort out how she’s related.

“Besides these 8 Crump children, there was Samuel Crump who died in WWI, plus the rest of them who grew up and had long lives: Helen Crump (Loughran) Parsons, Adah Crump Ferris, George Crump who was the first born, Julia Elder Crump Darling who was my grandmother, and Elizabeth (Bessie) Crump Enders …and one more child…who am I forgetting? Okay…I’ve printed out all these documents and have compared them with Anna’s list of her children, and see there is a child she named as Mary, Stillborn on March 7, 1883, who is not buried at Green Wood apparently. That’s very odd since there were children born before and after her who were all buried there. Another mystery. Gosh! Ya just gotta love genealogy!

“I might also mention that Anna’s husband, Samuel Crump, is listed on a gravestone “In Memoriam” because he actually died and is buried in Shanghai, China, where he was visiting daughter Elizabeth. And there is another “In Memoriam” listed for their son Samuel Crump who died fighting in WWI and is buried in Bony, France.”

Sumbitted by Patty Hoenigman (Great-great granddaughter of J.L. Riker)

Find Green-Wood cemetery here: http://www.green-wood.com/

One of the family records obtained by Patty Hoenigman and used with permission.


Record of John L. Riker (Col.) 

Interment Number:        164872                 Lot: 4259                                             Grave: 

Date of Interment: 10 June 1862 

Place of Birth: US 

Age: 38 years 

Marital Status: Widowed 

Late Residence: Fair Oaks, Virginia      

 Place of Death: Virginia

 Cause of Death: Killed in Battle

 Date of Death: 31 May 1862

 Funeral Director: T. C. Freeborn

 Remarks: Removed to lot 16159 on 4 December 1869     

Compiled from Chronology Books by Shirra Rockwood, Green-Wood Genealogy Team

December, 2015


A Puzzle from Vermont


Patty Hoenigman’s cousin from Vermont sent a number of photos to her he had found amongst his family photos. I have used the photo of George Elder here (see my post “George Elder” – Ed.), he also sent a photo of J.L. Riker, plus two unidentified photos.

We are thinking that the bearded man in the civilian clothes may be John L. Riker pre-war, though Patty wonders if it is in fact his brother James. Who the other gentleman is, standing by the table, we have no idea… can you help? – Ed.

Patty writes:

“My cousin who lives in Vermont… just sent me these photos that he found among his family photos. He didn’t know who they were, so I was able to fill him in about Riker in his Civil War uniform. It is a larger view than the photo of him that was just sent to me. It’s also very much like the one of the Smithsonian site with that wonderful article, except this is a much better quality of picture than what they used. Alas!

“What I’m thinking is that the one of the man (in civilian clothes – Ed.) is also him, as a younger man… a bit more hair, same position of his hands…not in uniform…but they sure do look alike! My hesitation is that I know John’s brother James Riker, the well known historian of the earliest settlers of New York, looks very much like him, based on a portrait I have of James from a museum in New York…when he was an elderly man. But I’d love to have you look closely at these two pictures and let me know what you think about who this other man might be. Maybe you’ve seen it before?

I don’t know who the man is who is standing by the table. It’s a very Victorian pose, but unfortunately it’s not labeled.”

Submitted by Patty Hoenigman (Great-great granddaughter of John L. Riker)


George Elder


“The man in the oval picture is George Elder… after John Lafayette Riker died, his other brother, Charles Bodle Riker, took in John’s daughter, Anna E. Riker. (Anna is my great grandmother.) It was her grandparents who were George and Hannah Elder, of Stamford, Connecticut. They also played a part in looking after Anna. When she married Samuel Crump, it was the Elders who issued the invitation to the wedding, which was in Stamford…not to be confused with Stanford. Stamford is very close to NYC.”

Submitted by Patty Hoenigman (Great-great granddaughter of John L. Riker)


Anna Crump (Riker) & Alan G. Darling Jnr. (1917)


“This photo is of Anna holding my father, Alan G. Darling Jr. He was born Sept 1, 1916, and looks to be about a year old, so this may have been taken in 1917, about the same time as the other photo (see post “Anna Crump Riker and Sam Crump Jnr” – Ed.). I’ve never been able to find out where the picture of her with Sam was taken, though I’ve asked people at various historical societies in New York and New Jersey. One of those questions I don’t have an answer to yet! My father was born in Duluth, Minnesota, so I guess it’s possible that Sam (Sam Crump Snr. – Ed.) and Anna went to visit their daughter Julia, Dad’s mother, in Minnesota and these pictures were taken during that trip. Just a wild guess, but there may be some foundation to it.”

Submitted by Patty Hoenigman (Great-great granddaughter of John L. Riker)