School Closings And Delays

Meghan Markle, Fiancée of Prince Harry, Has Local Ties

SHENANDOAH -- London, England is a mere 3,500 miles from the coal region of Pennsylvania, but you can forgive folks in Shamokin and Shenandoah if they're feeling a close bond with Great Britain's royal family these days after news broke that the future princess has a connection to coal country.

Last week, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle announced their engagement. The couple is set to get married in the spring of 2018. You might be saying to yourself, "yeah, this is old news." Well, thanks to one local historian's research, Markle's family tree actually links back to our area, dating all the way back to the 1800s.

Next spring, the world will be watching when American TV star Meghan Markle joins Britain's royal family, marrying Prince Harry, but for folks here in northeastern Pennsylvania, Markle's matrimony hits close to home.

It turns out Markle has family ties to Schuylkill and Northumberland counties. According to local historian and retired Southern Columbia teacher Andy Ulicny, who studied Markle's family tree, Markle's great-great-great-grandfather worked in the mines in Tower City and in the Shenandoah area.

On the other side of the family, Markle's great-grandfather was born in Shamokin in 1891.

"Meghan Markle, whose real name is Rebeccah, was born in 1981 in Los Angeles. Her father, Thomas Wayne Markle, in 1944. Her grandfather, Gordon Arnold Markle, was born in Juniata County. Meghan's great-grandfather was Isaac Markle, and he was born in Shamokin," said Ulicny of Shenandoah.

Newswatch 16 spoke with a few people in Shamokin who were very surprised to hear that Prince Harry's fiancée of all people has a local connection.

"I think that's amazing that we have a connection to the royals. That's wonderful," said Betty Ann Layton, Shamokin.

"I'm very shocked and glad that somebody in this area actually found somebody good," said Amy McCabe, Shamokin.

One gentlemen we spoke with has an invite out to Prince Harry and Markle. He sent out an invitation to the couple to visit the area because he wants a taste of royalty.

"They'll need a lot of security. That's for sure. I think it'd be wonderful. That would be such an honor," said Robert Rubendall of Shamokin.

Ulicny tells Newswatch 16 that he devoted about two or three hours of research into his findings after a production company reached out to him for a documentary on the couple that aired on BBC. He added that he just enjoys studying genealogy in his free time.


  • warningfakenews

    Why would anyone in the United States of America think that being related to someone of ‘royalty’?

    That countries still believe in this nonsense in this day and age is both sad and scary. That WE give it any quarter is alarming.

  • E

    Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! You people are reaching a new level of pathetic! Ha ha ha haha! The royal family has ties to white trash coal miners huh. Ha ha ha ha ha ha! Thank you white trash losers, you have made my day with your delusional nonsense. 😀

      • E

        @stiffupperlip ha ha ha! Does that count as an intelligent response in your particular trailer park. Ha ha ha! Pip pip, spot of tea ha ha ha ha! Is that all you’ve got coal miner trash. Bwahhaha! It’s no mystery why you are poor and why no one cares about you or your burnt out coal slum. Ha ha ha! Stiff upper lip ha ha ha! Nice name white trash.

  • Sgt. Pooptickle

    Thank God this important news story was printed. It’s a story that must be told and is completely relevant, impacting ALL of our lives…. profoundly!

  • the answer

    what a joke! according to wnep everybody has ties to the local region, Hillary Cinton, Joe Biden, yadda, yadda, yadda, .If it,s so great why do they all leave? Markles ties are on a spider web at best, by the way she’s not that great looking and she’s half black which i’m sure sits well with the leeches known as the royal family

    • Supporter of America

      I’ve been called a racist on here; but I think she is very attractive and could care less what her skin tone is or what her ancestral lineage is. Matters more who you are and what you do, everyone needs to get past race including those that like to use it for their gain. And btw, I’m not white.

  • Me

    Andy Ulicny has ties to WHLM. WHLM (allegedly) supports White Nationalism. So, by proxy, where does that leave Ulicny? I’m surprised WNEP wouldn’t want to distance itself from this story.

    • Tommygunn

      I’m sure she’s bragging about having Shenandoah pa ties. Ulincy may be bored after another tepid bloomsburg season. Blooms qb is from SHenandoah and you see how good they have been.

  • Elvis

    Ahh poor prince Harry , Ramon noodles and Vienna sausages and roller grill items from turkey hill! At least the EBT card won’t be in your future

  • Coal crackers

    So being a worthless, stay at home mother shouldn’t be anything unfamiliar to her genealogical makeup. Perhaps the Royal Family should make sure she has Facebook at her ready at all times. Prince Harry, you have no clue as to the dead end road your heading down with this one! Good luck my friend.

  • III%

    Well get out the finest Tupperware cups pour the boilo and invite them on down and sit a spell on the porch couch

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