The Ken Parfitt children are the descendants of varied backgrounds. Parfitt is a name that came from the French word “parfait.” That word means “perfect” and, yes, it is the name of a dessert! (I love to make cherry-almond parfaits.)
The Parfitts came to England with William the Conqueror in 1066. Somehow the ones that Ken is descended from became coal miners in Clutton, England, close to Bristol, the famous town where George Muller built the orphanages that never asked for money and relied solely on God answering prayer for providing their needs. Once the coal mines ran out in England, coal mines opened up in Wales. Some Parfitts moved to Wales and married Welsh girls, while continuing to be coal miners. They lived in the area of Trevithin, Monmouthshire, and Carmarthen, Carmarthenshire. (I’ll let you look that up on a map.)
I guess the coal mines were running out in Wales, too. For whatever reason, the Parfitts moved to new coal mines in Pennsylvania, near Scranton. But they ended up living for many years in Blossburg, Pennsylvania. This is just south of Elmira, New York. Robert Parfitt is the ancestor who emigrated with his wife and four children in October 1864. They had left behind the grave of their firstborn son, who died in 1857 at the age of 3. Their youngest baby was 6 months old, and he died the next year in March at the age of 10 months. They had a son in December that year, and then a daughter four years later. That daughter died at the age of 3 months. Then their oldest daughter died at age 14 almost one year later! One last son was born less than two months after that daughter died. What a sad life for that mother! Their fourth son, John, was the ancestor of Ken’s family. He married a young lady of Welsh descent in Morris Run, Pa. They had nine children. All this time, the family was still in the business of coal mining. John’s wife, Elizabeth, was the daughter of a blacksmith from Carmarthenshire, who had immigrated ten years before the Parfitts. He was also a justice of the peace in Blossburg at one point. Perhaps it was this non-miner connection that led John to try to get a better future for his son David. He enrolled him in a business school in Elmira, NY. Apparently David encouraged his father and siblings to move to Elmira because more and more of them moved there, as seen in Federal censuses. David Parfitt married a girl with German background, Augusta Louisa Heller.