Ellen Cummings was the daughter of John Cummings and Ellen Shay and was born at about 1862 in Berne, Albany County, NY. She was the only girl in a family of five, two of which died as young adults. She was named after her mother. Both her parents were born in Ireland. Her siblings were:
- James Cummings (June 25, 1857, D. after March 31, 1905)
- John Cummings Jr. (May 20, 1859, D. after March 31, 1905)
- George Cummings (born June 1, 1861, D. May 11, 1880)
- Thomas Cummings (B. Dec 11, 1866, D. Dec 29, 1882)
Marriage & Children
Ellen married James Albert Van Schaack, who was the son of Albert Van Schaack and his wife Elizabeth. Ellen and Albert were neighbors for many years before they married. James Albert’s brother Charles David Van Schaack married Isadora Ecker, who was the sister Ellen's sister in law Mary C. Ecker.
Ellen was born and raised in Berne, Albany County, NY. Ellen and her husband James lived in Dormansville near the town of Westerlo in the early 1900s. 
Ellen died after her father's death on March 31, 1905.