Re: Esther Ann Mason (1833-1860) (m.) Edward B. Patton, Clearfield Co., PA
I think a good possibility for your Esther A is the following MASON family living in Boggs Township, Centre County, Pennsylvania in 1850.
William 43 Innkeeper $3,000 Pa
Eliza 32 Pa
Esther A 17 Pa
Archibald 15 Pa
Casper 14 Pa
Mary E 7 Pa
This youngest child, Mary E MASON, is likely to be the 17 year old living in the Edward PATTON household in Curwensville, Clearfield County, Pennsylvania in 1860. So it would appear to me that after Esther's death, a younger sister came to help her family with the four motherless children.
Additionally, William, the innkeeper and wife, Eliza MASON with several children younger than 10 are living in Curwensville in 1860 as is a 25 year old Archy MASON, presumably a nickname for Archibald, the son of William and Eliza.
With all these MASONs found in the same 1860 location as your known PATTON family, I think the odds are great that this is the MASON family you're seeking and the 1850 census has an Esther A in that family whose age matches perfectly with the one you're seeking.It would seem to be a very good starting point.