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Silas May


Silas May

Silas May was born on Dec. 23, 1849 in Bedford County, PA, the son of Leonard and Maria "Catherine" (Younkin) May.

He was married to Anna Elizabeth Shirer ( ? -1939). They were longtime farmers.

Their eight children were Laura Holler, Stella Duniker, Sally Newman, Louise Robertson, Theodore May, Harry May, George W. May and John O. May.

Silas was employed as a stable boss at the Hamilton coal mine in or near Boynton. In about 1914, said the Meyersdale Republican, "he returned to his farm near Buffalo Mills" and stayed there for most of the remainder of his life.

Elizabeth died at the age of 91 on Sept. 1, 1939.

Silas lived for another five years as a widower and spent most of his final years by himself on his Buffalo Mills farm. In the fall of 1943, with his health failing, he moved into the residence of a neighbor Roy Holler near Buffalo Mills.. Stricken with kidney failure, he died at the age of 94 on July 26, 1944. Roy Haller of Buffalo Mills was the informant for the Pennsylvania death certificate, spelling the maiden name of Silas' mother as "Yonkon." Interment was in Dry Ridge Cemetery in Bedford County, following funeral services held in the Holler residence.

A longer obituary appeared in the Bedford Gazette, and a shorter one in the Republican.

Daughter Laura May ( ? - ? ) was born in (?). She married (?) Holler. They lived in 1944 in Cresaptown.

Daughter Stella May ( ? - ? ) was born in (?). She wedded (?) Duniker. In 1944, they resided in Grove City, PA.

Daughter Sally May ( ? - ? ) was born in (?). She was united in holy wedlock with (?) Newman. Their home in the mid-1940s was in Salisbury, Somerset County.

Daughter Louise May ( ? - ? ) was born in (?). She joined in matrimony with (?) Robertson. They dwelled in 1944 in Akron, OH. They are believed to have been the parents or grandparents of Homer Robertson. Homer was married to Helen Miller. Interested in genealogy, she published a 249-page book in 1989, entitled The Robertson and May Families: with Allied Families. In 1991 they attended the Younkin Reunion in Kingwood, Somerset County, PA.


Homer and Helen Robertson, 1991 Younkin Reunion, Kingwood, PA


Son Theodore May ( ? - ? ) was born in (?). He lived in Oregon in 1944.

Son Harry May ( ? - ? ) was born in (?). He resided in Bedford in 1944.

Son George W. May (1880-1957) was born on May 18, 1880 in Bedford County. He wedded Alice Lake ( ? - ? ). The couple may have produced a son, George L. May. They were farmers and in about 1927 relocated to a farm in East Freedom Township, Blair County, PA, where they remained for good. George contracted leukemia in about 1952 and suffered the illness for five years. He died at the age of 76 on March 1, 1957. Burial was in River View Cemetery in East Freedom Township.

Son John O. May (1890-1959) was born on June 9, 1890 in Buffalo Mills, Bedford County. He was joined in wedlock with Margaret Walker ( ? - ? ). They produced five offspring -- John George May, Evelyn May, Idabelle Harding, Mrs. John Leslie and James B. May. He spent many years working as a coal miner and eventually retired from the occupation. They dwelled in Boynton, Elklick Township, Somerset County in 1944. John was felled by multiple heart attakcs and died at the age of 69 on Aug. 15, 1959. Interment was in the Salisbury Odd Fellows Cemetery.

  • Grandson John George May (1916-1948) was born on May 1, 1916 in Boynton, Somerset County. He married Agnes Robertson ( ? - ? ). He obtained work in Akron, OH, where he was employed in building tires by Mohawk Rubber Company. He became stricken with a severe kidney infection in late 1945 and his health declined further for the next two-and-a-half years. His symptoms also included heart disease and cystitis. He died in his parents' home in Boynton, at the age of 32, on May 15, 1948. An obituary in the Meyersdale Republican noted that Rev. Arthur Vespa officiated at the funeral service, followed by burial in the Salisbury IOOF Cemetery.
  • Granddaughter Evelyn May ( ? - ? ) was unmarried and living in Cresaptown, MD in 1948.
  • Granddaughter Idabelle May ( ? - ? ) was united in marriage with (?) Harding. Her home in 1948 was in Salisbury, Somerset County.
  • Granddaughter (?) May wedded John Leslie Jr. ( ? - ? ). They dwelled in Boynton, Somerset County.
  • Grandson James B. May ( ? - ? ) was with the U.S. Army in 1948 and stationed at Phoenixville, PA.


~ More ~

Circa 1982, Homer and Ruth Robertson of Provo, Utah were researching this family. [See Thomas/Cross Papers, pp. 631-634.] They were in correspondence with Younkin researchers Elaine (Lauter) Murphy and Joseph Warren Thomas III, trying to make connections among the disparate family branches.


Copyright 2016-2017 Mark A. Miner

Research for this page graciously shared by the late Olive (Rowan) Duff and the late Donna (Younkin) Logan. May brothers image courtesy Suzanne (Smith) Chutis.