Franklin "Frank" Miner was born on Jan. 17, 1893 at Wilmerding, Allegheny County, PA, the son of William Henry ‘Squire’ and Sara Jane (Basinger) Minerd. He was a carpenter and a longtime employee at Fallingwater®, the house over a waterfall designed by Frank Lloyd Wright that is considered America’s “most famous modern house.”
As a young man, Frank and his family moved back to Mill Run, Fayette County, PA, in the vicinity of where his father had grown up. Frank played a bass drum in the Mill Run Concert Band, and is mentioned and pictured in the 1970 book, A History of Mill Run.
During World War I, Frank served in the U.S. Army. When he registered for the military draft, he stated that he was employed by his father as a farm laborer in Mill Run. He was recorded as being of medium height, and stout build, with gray eyes and black hair.
On Christmas Day 1919, Frank married his first wife, Ida B. Grimm (1900-1971), the daughter of Henry and Barbara "Ellen" (Parker) Grimm and a foster daughter of Milton and Beatrice (Bates) Shipley. Frank was age 26 at the time, and Ida 19, at the time.
They had eight children: Harold Henry Miner, Hilda Cole, Howard K. Miner, Homer Miner, Eleanor Provance, Carroll "Wayne" Miner, Arla Borghi and Warren Miner. Sadly, Warren died at age three months, passing away at Connellsville State Hospital on July 25, 1941.
Immediately after their marriage, Frank and Ida began living with Ida's parents in Springfield Township, where Frank secured employment as a laborer in a local coal mine. When the federal census was taken in 1920, a year after marriage, the Miners and Grims are shown together under one roof.
The Miners later lived in Mill Run, Normalville and Indian Head, all nearby communities in the mountains of Fayette County. By 1920, remaining in Springfield Township, they had six children at home, along with brother in law Weldon Nicholson. Both Frank and Weldon were laborers for the Grimm Mine. Residing just a few households away were Frank's sister and brother in law, Irene and James Welsh and children, and their brother Clyde Miner and his wife Jane and family.
Frank and Ida later divorced. She remarried, to Orville W. Imel (1904- ? ), the son of Charles Grant and Ida (Whipkey) Imel. Ida and Orville resided in Normalville, Fayette County.
Frank's second wife was Bertha C. Basinger (1902-1963), daughter of Samuel and Amanda (Meyers) Basinger of Springfield Township. She had two children prior to her marriage with Frank -- Marie Seneri and Judd C. Basinger.
Frank and Bertha went on to have five more children of their own -- Donnie Franklin Miner, Betty Lou Rugg, Ruth Shawley, Lenora Blanchard Reese Cox and Marvin Miner. They also apparently took in a young girl to raise, Carol Wall.
Frank was employed at Fallingwater by the owners, Edgar J. and Liliane Kaufmann, from the 1930s until his untimely death in 1956. His brothers Lester and Ralph also worked at Fallingwater for many years. The projects Frank was involved in are described in papers found in the Fallingwater archives during research in 2004. Among the projects were were:
... Steps at Fallingwater, painting the swimming pool pipe, working on driveways and the dam, and tearing down the Watson house (Sept. 12, 1955); a pipeline from the greenhouse to the garden (Nov. 8, 1955); working at the barn near Ethel Clinton Appel's house (Jan. 23, 1956); sanding floors and removing a door of the Merle Taylor house (April 17, 1956).
In 1954, Frank’s large family gathered for the first official reunion, held at the home of son Harold in Point Marion, PA. The reunions continue to be held today, still drawing large crowds of family.
During World War II, sons Harold, Homer and Howard served in the U.S. Armed Forces. Occasionally, military updates about them were published in a hometown newsletter, The Messenger, edited by a distant cousin, Ferne (Minerd) Work. A Messenger article in October 1944 disclosed that "On a furlough several weeks ago Harold Miner of the Navy was married to a girl from Point Marion. Congratulations and wish you happiness." In February 1946, the Messenger said that "Howard Miner was expecting to leave Europe the first of the year, but at this time have heard nothing else from him." In March 1946, the newsletter reported that:
Since the last publication more boys have been discharged. They include, ... Howard Miner... Homer Miner thinks he will be a civilian about this month. Boys we really hope it won't be long until you will all be back and going about in your usual way.
Sadly, Frank passed away suddenly on June 4, 1956, after working a full day. He was shopping for a new television at a store in Normalville when he collapsed and died of a stroke.
He was laid to rest in the Normalville Cemetery. His obituary in the Connellsville Daily Courier noted that Frank “had been employed at the E.J. Kaufman estate, and was a veteran of World War One.”
In her report to Mr. Kaufmann of June 4, Mrs. Appel wrote: “We were all shocked and saddened to learn of the sudden death of Ralph Miner’s brother Frank, one of our workmen… Flowers were sent [from] Mr. Kaufmann.” Two men were hired to replace Frank.
Bertha outlived her husband by seven years. Suffering with hypertension, she was felled by a massive heart attack and died at the age of 60 on March 9, 1963. Her remains were laid to rest beside Frank at the Normalville Cemetery following funeral serviced led by Rev. Robert Blank in the Normalville Evangelical United Brethren Church.
Former wife Ida passed away on Oct. 2, 1971, in Connellsville.
She and Orville Imel are mentioned in the 1975 book, Immel and Imel Families in America, authored by Velma (Byrum) Keller. Ida's children are mentioned in the book, but mistakenly are named "Imel" rather than "Miner."
In June 2004, Frank’s family gathered for their 50th annual reunion at the Indian Creek Community Center. A special booklet with photos was published by loving granddaughters as a handout.
Just a few weeks later, on July 10-11, 2004, Frank was honored among several of his brothers and cousins, for their longtime work at Fallingwater, at the national Minerd-Miner-Minor Reunion in Kingwood and Mill Run, PA. Click here to view our special reunion booklet. The event received statewide news media coverage by the Associated Press.
~ Son Harold Henry Miner ~
Son Harold Henry Miner (1920-2007) was born in 1920.
He was a machinist with the U.S. Navy during World War II.
On Aug. 29, 1944, at the age of 24, he married Emma E. Blosser ( ? -2007).
They resided in Point Marion, Greene County, PA, where they raised their seven children -- Sharon Hawthorne, Judy Sandor, Joyce Miner, Keith Miner, Nita Rhodes, Don Miner and Carol Kezmarsky.
Harold was "an electrician by trade [and] retired from the now former Houze Glass Corporation in Point Marion after over 30 years employment and was a member of the American Flint Glass Workers Union Local 547," said the Herald-Standard.
On Aug. 28, 1994, they celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary. An article and photograph about their celebration were published in the Uniontown Herald-Standard.
Harold and Emma were married for 62 years.
Both passed away in 2007. She died on Jan. 30, 2007, and he only survived her by three and a half months, passing on May 4, 2007. They rest for eternity at Jacobs Lutheran Cemetery in Masontown, Fayette County.
Daughter Sharon Elaine Miner married Barry Thomas Hawthorne on Sept. 2, 1967 in St. Hubert Roman Catholic Church in Point Marion. Their four children are Lori Ann Groover, Richard Thomas Hawthorne, Bryan Joseph Hawthorne and Kevin Matthew Hawthorne. Circa 2007, their home was in Lake Lynn, PA.
Daughter Judith Kathleen "Judy" Miner married Michael John Sandor on May 30, 1969. They resided in Eastern Ohio and had three children, Michael John Sandor Jr., Krista Michelle Sandor and Eric Scott Sandor. Judy's home in 2007 was in Lake Milton, OH.
Daughter Joyce Lea Miner has dwelled in Point Marion.
Son Harold "Keith" Miner Sr. married Susan Kaye Baer on Sept. 7, 1974 in Point Marion. They have lived in Gans, PA, and theiir two children are Melissa Kaye Miner and Harold Keith Miner Jr.
Daughter Nita Louise Miner married Danny Rhodes on Dec. 11, 1976 at her parents' home. Their only known daughter is Amy Elizabeth Rhodes. The Rhodeses live in Point Marion.
Son Donald Wayne "Don" Miner married Brenda Lee Kennedy on July 8, 1978 in Masontown, Fayette County. Their two known children are Donald Wayne Miner Jr. and Kathryn Lynn Miner. Circa 2007, they made their residence in Fairchance, Fayette County.
Daughter Carol Sue Miner married Stanley Steven Kravits on May 12, 1979. They had two children, Andrea Nicole Kravats and Sean Steven Kravats. Later, she married Tadd Kezmarsky and resided in Uniontown, Fayette County.
~ Daughter Hilda (Miner) Cole ~
Daughter Hilda Miner (1922-1981) was born in about 1922.
At the age of 19, she moved in about 1941 to Monaca, Beaver County, PA.
She married Charles J. Cole (1918-2000) and had four children -- John Franklin Cole, Jerald Allen Cole, Thomas Lee Cole and Susan Freehauf.
They were members of the United Methodist Church in Freedom and of the American Croatian Club in Monaca, said the Beaver County Times.
Circa 1979, she provided a few details about her family to neighbor Marlene (Shires) Bluemling, who in turn forwarded the material to the founder of this website.
Hilda passed away on Aug. 18, 1981. Her remains were brought back to Fayette County for interment in Normalville Cemetery.
Charles outlived his bride by 19 years. He died in 2000.
Son John Franklin Cole married Carol. Their five children are Tina Lynn Cole, John Franklin Cole Jr., Ronald Allen Cole, Robert Charles Cole and Krystal Cole.
Son Jerald Allen Cole wedded Betty Ann. Their three offspring were Virginia Sue Cole, Christine Robyn Cole and Edward Allen "Ted" Cole.
Son Thomas Lee Cole was joined in wedlock with Pamela. They are the parents of Courtney Lynn Cole, Rachelle Renee Cole and Kayla Rae Cole.
Daughter Susan Cole was united in matrimony with Ronald Freehauf. Their children are Jeremy Allen Freehauf and Jamie Sue Freehauf.
~ Son Howard K. Miner ~
Son Howard K. Miner (1924- ? ) was born on Jan. 19, 1924.
At the age of 19, on April 8, 1943, he married Ruth E. Bryner (July 10, 1925- ? ), the daughter of Clarence and Rosa Bryner of Mill Run. The nuptials were held in the parsonage of the East End Evangelical United Brethren church, with Rev. W.J. Richey leading the service.
They had three children -- Joyce Ann Miner, Howard Miner Jr. and Lou Ann Hensel. Heartbreak enveloped the Miners in March 1947 when their eldest daughter Joyce died at birth in Connellsville State Hospital, due to a toxemia pregnancy.
Howard was employed as a mechanic by Connellsville Motor Sales and later by Lenox in Mount Pleasant, Westmoreland County, PA.
On April 8, 1993, they celebrated their golden wedding anniversary with a reception at the Indian Creek Valley Community Church in Indian Head, with 200 well-wishers in attendance. An article about the anniversary celebration, seen here, was printed in the Daily Courier.
Son Howard K. Miner Jr. (1950-1984) was born on Aug. 19, 1950 in Mill Run. He married Mary Richards. They resided in the Pittsburgh suburb of Monroeville. Sadly, Howard died at the age of 33 on April 27, 1984. Burial was in the Indian Creek Baptist Church in Mill Run.
Daughter Lou Ann Miner married Thomas Hensel on June 17, 1952. Their two daughters are Bridget Hensel and Jill Hensel.
~ Son Homer Franklin Miner ~
Son Homer Franklin Miner (1925-2004) was born on Oct. 3, 1925.
He served in the U.S. Navy during World War II.
On Sept. 1, 1947, at the age of 22, he married 25-year-old Emma Jean Workman (1922-2013). She was the daughter of Oliver and Helen Workman of Vanderbilt, Fayette County.
They had two children -- Robert Miner and Marsha Garlick.
The Daily Courier said that Homer "was a self-employed painter for many years, and also worked for many years as a custodian for the Connellsville Area School District. After retirement, he continued his work as a painter for family and friends.”
Emma Jean, said the Courier, was a member of Otterbein United Methodist Church, where she sang in the choir and was secretary and treasurer of her Sunday School class. She also served in leadership roles with the Rebekah Lodge.
In 1997, the Miners celebrated their golden anniversary in 1997, with a reception in the Poplar Run area of Normalville, and with their photograph (then and now, seen here) appearing in the Courier.
The family was blanketed with sorrow when son Robert D. Miner died in 1981. See his entry below for more..
Homer passed away in 2004.
Emma Jean outlived her husband by nine years, and spent her final years in the home of her married daughter in Greensboro, NC. She died at the age of 90 in Greensboro on July 22, 2013. Her remains were returned to Western Pennsylvania for interment in Green Ridge Memorial Park in Connellsville.
Son Robert D. Miner (1950-1981) was born on March 14, 1950. He was wedded to Janet DeMaske. They had one known daughter, Michaela DeMaske. Robert made a living as an on-air announcer for the WCVI and WPQR radio stations in Uniontown, Fayette County. Tragically, at the age of 31, he passed away on July 13, 1981. Interment was in Green Ridge Memorial Park north of Connellsville.
Daughter Marsha Miner married Charles Garlick in Canonsburg, Washington County, PA on Sept. 2, 1971. They produced one son, Brian Garlick.
~ Daughter Eleanor (Miner) Provance ~
Daughter Eleanor Miner (1927-1991) was born on Dec. 8, 1927.
She moved to Monaca, Beaver County, PA, in about 1951, where on Oct. 1, 1947, she married Howard Provance (Nov. 23, 1925- ? ).
The Provances had one daughter, Roberta Gerlinger.
Eleanor was a longtime " manager of the snack bar at The Medical Center, Beaver, [and] a member of Freedom United Methodist Church,” said the Beaver County Times.
Eleanor died on June 10, 1991 at the age of 64.
Howard's fate is not yet known but will be added here when learned.
Daughter Roberta Provance married Thomas Gerlinger. They are the parents of Jena Gerlinger, Phillip Gerlinger and Casey Gerlinger.
~ Son Carroll "Wayne" Miner ~
Son Carroll "Wayne" Miner (1930-living) was born in 1930.
As a teenager, he relocated to Monaca, Beaver County, PA, where his sister Arla lived and where he remained for decades. He never married.
In about 1990, as a volunteer for the Salvation Army, he met the founder of this website during a pickup of canned goods at a local civil engineering firm, Michael Baker Corporation, and the two were photographed together.
~ Daughter Arla (Miner) Borghi ~
Daughter Arla Miner (1933-2013) was born on Jan. 29, 1933 in Mill Run. As a young woman she and her brother Wayne moved to Beaver County, PA.
There, in about 1948, she married William C. Borghi ( ? - ? ).
Their children were Mary Beth Kramer and Janice Anderson. The family made its home in Beaver Falls and were members of St. Philomena Catholic Church, today known as St. Monica-College Hill.
Arla was employed as a manager with Revco. She enjoyed bingo and card games and bowled in the Beaver Falls City Women's Scratch League.
Sadly, they endured the untimely death of their son in law George Kramer.
Arla passed away in Providence Care Center on Sept. 20, 2013 at the age of 80. Following a mass of Christian burial at the family church, led by Father John Naugle, her remains were placed into eternal repose in St. Mary Cemetery in Chippewa Township.
Daughter Mary Beth Borghi married George Kramer ( ? -1989) on Aug. 16, 1975. They had three children -- Matthew Kramer, Bradley Kramer and Douglas Kramer. Their home was in North Fayette Township. Sadly, George passed away on Nov. 27, 1989, ending their marriage of 14 years' duration.
Daughter Janice Borghi married Michael Anderson on Oct. 29, 1977. The Andersons have dwelled in Beaver Falls. Their children are Melissa Bidlack, Jenna Anderson and Jack Anderson III. Janice has been a legal secretary in the office of attorney John Rackley in Beaver, PA.
~ Son Donnie Franklin Miner ~
Son Donnie Franklin Miner (1932-2010) was born on March 22, 1932 in Indian Head, Fayette County..
On Nov. 16, 1951, at the age of 19, he married 16-year-old Helen Hutchinson (1935-living).
They had nine children -- Pamela Treacher Thompson, Donnie Miner, Edward Miner, Robert Miner, Ronald Miner, Mark Miner, Elizabeth Hall, Christopher Miner and Rose Miner.
Donnie was "employed as a logger all of his life and he worked for the Gerald King Lumber Co.," said the Daily Courier. "He was a member of the Hampton Church of God."
Suffering from Alzheimer's disease, Donnie passed away on Valentine's Day 2010, at home, at the age of 77. In his Daily Courier obituary, 33 grandchildren, 11 step-grandchildren and 31 great-grandchildren were named, for a total of 75 offspring.
Daughter Pamela Miner was born in (?). On April 20, 1968, she was united in holy matrimony with Daniel Bryan Treacher (Dec. 25, 1946-2003), the son of Howard and Inez (Scarlett) Treacher. They are the parents of Julie Renee Treacher, Krista Lee Thompson, Daniel Bryan Treacher Jr. and Shane Edward Kenneth Treacher. The family were members of the Hampton Church of God. Said the Connellsville Daily Courier, "Prior to retirement in 1999, he worked as a materials manager for the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation for 33 years. He was a member of the Springfield Township Volunteer Hose Co., and coached Mill Run Instructional League Baseball for many years." Sadly, Daniel died at home at the age of 56 on Jan. 4, 2003. After funeral services, his remains were placed into repose in the Indian Creek Baptist Church Cemetery, with Rev. Carl Ritenour officiating. An obituary was published in the Greensburg Tribune-Review. Later, Pamela wed (?) Thompson.
Son Donnie Franklin Miner Jr. married Deborah Lavern Keslar. They produced these children -- Jodi Lynn Curry, Dawn Marie Miner and Valerie Esma Miner. In 2010, their home was in Apollo, PA.
Son Edward Ross "Eddie" Miner has been married twice. He married Nancy Lee (King) Swope of the family of Harry David and Amanda (Burkett) Miner. She had been married before and brought these offspring to the marriage with Eddie -- Stan David Swope Jr., Nathan Lee Swope, Adam Charles Swope and Roy Allen Swope. Eddie and Nancy adopted a daughter, Kimberly Ariel Miner. In April 1992, Eddie and Nancy spent a day with the founder of this website, driving through the countryside and meeting members of their families in Mill Run and Kingwood. Later, by 2010, he married Lisa and maintained a home in Mill Run.
Son Robert Allen Miner has been married several times. His first bride is believed to have been Nancy Porterfield. Their four children are Robert Allen "Robbie" Miner Jr., Jami Marie Upton, Joshua John Miner and Jeffrey Robert Miner. After a divorce, Robert wed a second time to Evelyn Jo Caster on June 29, 1987. He married again to Careth. Former wife Nancy also married again to Charles E. Firestone (Feb. 29, 1936-2017), son of Charles D. "Chick" and Eleanor "Ellie" (Pritts) Firestone of Normalville.
Son Ronald Wilson Miner wed Debra Marie Skelly on May 24, 1980. Their two known sons are Ronald William Miner and Eric Matthew Miner. They lived in White, PA in 2010.
Son Mark Dewayne Miner was joined in wedlock with Margaret Shroyer on Nov. 8, 1980. They are the parents of Joseph Edward Miner, Justin Dewayne Miner and Jared Scott Miner.
Daughter Elizabeth Ann Miner was united in matrimony with Kenneth Ray Hall on May 16, 1981. They have made their home in Mill Run. In an interesting twist, Kenneth's brother married a distant cousin of Elizabeth's, Tammy Minerd, of the family of Arthur Ralph "Buck" Minerd of Masontown, Fayette County.
Son Christopher Scott Miner married Lynn Burkholder on March 24, 1990. Christopher and Lynn were pictured in the Greensburg (PA) Tribune Review in 1991, following his return from U.S. Navy duty during the Persian Gulf War.
Daughter Rose Marie Miner
~ Daughter Betty Lou (Miner) Rugg ~
Daughter Betty Lou Miner (1934- ? ) was born on Oct. 29, 1934.
At the age of 16, on Sept. 27, 1951, she was united in marriage with 20-year-old Clayton R. Rugg (1931-2009), the son of Eli and Helen (Augustine) Rugg.
They made their home in Mill Run and produced six children -- Russell Rugg, Clayton Eli Rugg, Larry Rugg, Kathy Rugg and Nancy Rugg. Sadly, son Russell Rugg was born with spina bifida and died at the age of three weeks in January 1951 in Connellsville
Clayton was a veteran of the U.S. Army. Said the Uniontown Herald Standard, he was employed at Anchor Hocking Glass Corporation (seen here) and also a self-employed farmer.
Clayton passed away at the age of 78 in Highlands Hospital, Connellsville, on Aug. 29, 2009.
Son Clayton Eli Rugg married Denise Mitchell on Feb. 4, 1973. They had three children -- Amy Rugg, Matthew Rugg and Anita Rugg.
Son Larry Rugg wed Penny Lytle on Nov. 5, 1973. They are the parents of Jennifer Hosmer Lowdermilk, Steven Rugg and Cindy Rugg.
Daughter Kathy Rugg
Daughter Nancy Rugg
~ Daughter Ruth (Miner) Shawley ~
Daughter Ruth Miner (1937- ? ) was born on Sept. 26, 1937.
She was married to Curtis Shawley (June 26, 1927-1991).
Their only known daughter was Audrey Pirl.
Curtis passed away on Nov. 16, 1991.
Daughter Audrey Shawley married William Pirl. Their two children were William Pirl Jr. and Chad Pirl.
~ Daughter Lenora (Miner) Blanchard Reese Cox ~
Daughter Lenora Miner (1942- ? ) was born in 1942. She was wed three times.
Lenora's first husband was Richard M. Blanchard Sr. They were the parents of Richard Blanchard Jr., Catherine Lora and Michael Blanchard.
Lenora's second spouse was (?) Reese. They produced a son, Donald Reese.
Lenora's third marriage was to Otis Cox (1930- ? ). Her home in 2010 was in Clinton, Allegheny County, PA.
More will be added here when additional research is done.
~ Son Marvin Miner ~
Son Marvin Miner (1947-living) was born in 1947.
His wife was Patricia Sue Burke. The Miners had three children -- Michael Miner, Janelle Miner and Jennifer Miner.
Marvin and his family attended the 2004 Frank Miner Reunion held at the Indian Creek Valley Community Center.
Circa 2010, he made his residence in Denver.
~ Stepdaughter Marie Seneri ~
Stepdaughter Marie Seneri lived in Chicago in 1963.
~ Stepson Judd C. Basinger ~
Stepson Judd C. Basinger (1923-2009) was born on July 11, 1923 in Mill Run, the son of Carl Channing and Bertha Basinger.
He made his home on Hampton Road in Mill Run in 1963. Reported the Daily Courier, "Judd worked as a carpenter for James Meyers Contracting in Normalville for 32 years. He was a veteran of World War II having served in the Army and he was a charter member of the Donegal VFW No. 6743. He was also a member of the Normalville Rod and Gun Club. Judd was a longtime member of Mill Run United Methodist Church and a member of the Senior Bible Class where he had 62 years of perfect attendance.
Judd married Beulah A. Cole ( ? -2002). They had one daughter, Shirley Ann Morton.
Beulah passed away in 2002.
He died on Dec. 9, 2009. Following funeral services at the Mill Run United Methodist Church, burial was in Normalville Cemetery.
~ Foster Daughter Carol Wall ~
Foster daughter Carol Wall was taken in by the Miners and raised as a member of the family.
Carol resided in Georgia in 1963.
Copyright © 2004-2007, 2009-2010, 2016-2017 Mark A. Miner