He married Sarah Ann Leonard 1852. Sarah was born 1831. Sarah died 1900. John's home in Snow Hill is called the John M. Purnell House in Touart's book and the initials J.M.P. are etched in a brick dated 1858. John is shown in the 1860 census as a farmer. His children's names are shown in the census. The Purnells sold their farm, comprised of properties known as "Snow Hill Confirmation," "Flatbury," and "Spence's Mill" in 1890. (Paul B. Touart, Along the Seaboard Side, p. 348) John is shown in the 1898 "tree" with his children and his descendants are traced further in Merryweather's "Purnell Family." He is shown at Snow Hill in 1880, age 58, ex-farmer; wife, Sarah A., 47; son Clayton, 23, lawyer; Ella, 18, and Annie B., 11.
John Matthew Purnell and Sarah Ann Leonard had the following children:
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