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Catherine Ann 'Caty'
(Comp) Sarver



Catherine Ann "Caty" (Comp) Sarver was born in about 1830 in Bedford County, PA, the daughter of Jacob and Elizabeth "Betsy" (Sturtz) Comp.

She was united in the bonds of holy matrimony with William Sarver (Jan. 13, 1835-1906), son of Henry and Margaret (Mosholder) Sarver of Allegheny Township, Somerset County. The bride was five years older than the groom.

Together, the couple bore a brood of six known children -- Matilda Sarver, Lucinda Crissinger, Daniel F. Sarver, Elizabeth Miller, Emma J. Hillegass and Rose Ann Sarver.


Catherine's obituary, Somerset Herald
Library of Congress

When the federal census enumerations were made in 1860, 1870 and 1880, the family dwelled on a farm in Allegheny Township, Somerset County. Their home in 1896 is known to have been near Dividing Ridge in the township.

In August 1873, the Sarvers were named in the last will and testament of Catherine's father.

William was in the news on New Year's Day 1896 for having "shot a wild turkey a few days ago which weighed twenty pounds," said the Somerset Herald. "The bird measured four feet four inches from tip of head to beak of tail and wore a beard eighteen inches long... [He is] one of the best marksmen in the county..."


Somerset Herald, 1897. Library of Congress

Grief cascaded over the family when Catherine contracted typhoid fever and died on Feb. 22, 1896. A brief notice in the Herald said that she was "aged about fifty-five years. She is survived by her husband and several married children." Her passing also was noted in the Altoona (PA) Tribune.

William survived his wife by a dozen years.

An unfortunate mishap in November 1897 landed William again in a story in the Herald. The article reported that he had:

...lost a valuable horse in a peculiar manner... He was on his way to New Baltimore, from whence he proposed going hunting the next day. The distance from his home to New Baltimore is about four miles and he started to make the trip on horse back. In attempting to mount, the girth broke and the rider fell to the ground, fortunately alighting on his feet. The horse shied and Sarver concluded to lead him a short distance. Before he had gone many feet the animal shied again and Sarver poked him in the ribs with the muzzle of his gun when the weapon was discharged. The load of shot penetrated the horse's side behind the left front shoulder, when he dropped over in his tracks stone dead. The shot had pierced his heart.

The federal census of 1900 shows William in Allegheny Township, sharing a home with 47-year-old boarder and servant Hester Lape, a widow. Living next door was his married son Daniel and family.

Suffering from organic heart disease and stricken with typhoid fever, William died in Allegheny Township at the age of 71 on Aug. 31, 1906. 

His remains were interred in Mt. Zion Cemetery. John Sarver, of Dividing Ridge, was the informant for the official Pennsylvania certificate of death.


Sand Patch Hotel, a landmark near the Sarvers' residence


~ Daughter Matilda Sarver ~

Daughter Matilda Sarver (1856- ? ) was born in about 1856.

She never learned to read or write.


~ Daughter Lucinda (Sarver) Crissinger ~

Daughter Lucinda Sarver (1858-1934) was born on June 16, 1858 in Somerset County. She never learned to read or write.

She entered into marriage with Nelson Crissinger (March 6, 1856-1928), son of Jacob and Tenna (Arnold) Crissinger, the father an immigrant from Germany.

The only son born into this marriage was Elmer M. Crissinger.

The family made its home a mile east of Sand Patch in Greenville Township, Somerset County. Nelson earned a living as a laborer.

He was burdened with hardening of the arteries for the last five years of his life. He was stricken by a stroke of apolexy and died at the age of 72 on May 3, 1928. An obituary in the Meyersdale Republican said that he "had been an invalid for several years." Rev. John Wegley of Somerset led the funeral service held in the Hochstettler Church of the Brethren.

Lucinda maintained her home as a widow near Sand Patch and endured heart valve disease. She passed into eternity in her home at the age of 83 on April 3, 1942. Obituaries in the Somerset Daily American and Republican said she was survived by two grandchildren and six great-grandchildren. Funeral services were led by Rev. Rhodes at the Hostetler Church in Greenville Township. Burial followed in the Hostetler/Hochstetler Cemetery. On her Pennsylvania death certificate, with Nannie Murray as the source, the maiden name of Lucinda's mother was spelled out as "Elsie Compt."

Son Elmer M. Crissinger (1880-1941) was born on Jan. 3, 1880 in or near Sand Patch, Somerset County. He spent his entire life as a farmer. He was married to Lilly Sanders (1878- ? ), daughter of H.P. Sanders. They made their residence in or near Sand Patch. At least four children born to the couple were Howard Crissinger, Harry Crissinger, Nannie Crissinger and Juanita Crissinger. Elmer's name was in the news over the years for activities such as boiling sugar to make syrup, hauling coal and lime, and constructing a tenant house on his farm. Circa 1939-1940, he is known to have employed 18-year-old nephew Harvey Miller on the farm. At the age of 61, suffering from heart and kidney disease, as well as phlebitis, a bloot clot developed in his heart, and he succumbed to death on Feb. 16, 1941. The Daily American obituary misspelled his mother's maiden name as "Farber."


~ Son Daniel F. Sarver ~

Son Daniel F. Sarver (1861-1906) was born on Feb. 24, 1861 in Allegheny Township. He grew up working on the family farm in Allegheny Township, Somerset County.

In 1884, at the age of about 23, he was joined in wedlock with Maggie Amanda Foust (Aug. 1862- ? ).

At least three offspring were born to this marriage -- Cora M. Sarver, Artie Nelson Sarver and Rose L. Sarver.

Their home was on Dividing Ridge, Allegheny Township.

Sometime in 1906, Daniel contracted typhoid fever. While he appeared to be recovering, he developed "neuralgia of the heart," a type of infection or inflammation. He surrendered to the spectre of death on Sept. 9, 1906, at the age of 45. An examining physician wrote that "mental worry" was a contributing factor to his death. Burial of the remains was in Mt. Zion Cemetery.

Daughter Cora M. Sarver (1884- ? ) was born in July 1884.

Son Artie Nelson Sarver (1886-1981) was born on May 19, 1886 in Allegheny Township, Somerset County. He wedded Georgia Matilda Felton ( ? - ? ). The pair together bore a brood of these children -- Daisy Sarver, Merle Sarver, Verna Miglets, Edison L. Sarver Sr., Victor E. Sarver, Hazel Morrison, Caroly Shell, Ruth Devanney, Artie Sarver Jr. and Howard B. "Punk" Sarver. Circa 1914, the family resided in Allegheny Township, but by 1916 had migrated to Ohiopyle, Fayette County, PA. Georgia preceeded Artie in death. His final years were spent in Confluence, Somerset County. He passed away at the age of 94, on Jan. 12, 1981, as a resident of Fazio Nursing Home in Markleysburg. Burial was in Mt. Zion Lutheran Cemetery. An obituary in the Meyersdale Republican said that he was survived by an astonishing 60 grandchildren, 103 great-grandchildren and 17 great-great grandchildren.

  • Grandson Merle Sarver ( ? - ? ) migrated to Portage, IN.
  • Granddaughter Verna Sarver ( ? - ? ) was united in matrimony with (?) Miglets. They relocated to Poland and Youngstown, OH.
  • Somerset County
    Memorial Park

    Grandson Edison L. Sarver (1914-1990) was born on July 8, 1914 in Allegheny Township, Somerset County. He entered into marriage with Lydia Grace Morrison ( ? - ? ). The couple established their home near Rockwood and were the parents of James W. Sarver, Wilma Foust, Genevieve Zorn, Violet L. Hoover, Edison L. Sarver Jr. and Judy Spangler. Edison earned a living as a coal miner, employed by B. Quality Coal Company and the Somerset Foundry, and belonged to the United Mine Workers of America. For 44 years, he held a membership in the Somerset Alliance Church and volunteered his time in a number of positions. After Lydia's death, Edison kept company with a close friend, Nancy C. Gastley. Edison died at the age of 75 on March 3, 1990. Funeral services were held in the family church, led by Rev. Melvin E. Vance. The remains were interred in Somerset County Memorial Park. In an obituary in the Somerset Daily American, the family asked that any memorial donations be made to the Somerset In Touch Hospice.
  • Grandson Victor E. Sarver (1916-1990) was born on Jan. 23, 1916 in Somerset County. He was united in matrimony with Mary Lytle ( ? - ? ). They planted roots in Farmington, Fayette County, PA. Victor was a member of the United Mine Workers of America as well as the Ohiopyle Grange and the Laurel Mountain Baptist Church. Together, the couple produced four children -- Sheila Sarver, Donald Sarver, Patricia Cottrell and Marjorie Detrick. Victor died at the age of 74 on Aug. 24, 1990. Burial was in West Plan Cemetery in Addison, Somerset County. The funeral was co-officiated by pastors James Hickle and Clifford Sarver. An obituary appeared in the Somerset Daily American.
  • Granddaughter Hazel Sarver ( ? - ? ) married (?) Morrison of Ohiopyle, Fayette County.
  • Granddaughter Carolyn Sarver ( ? - ? ) wedded ( ? - ? ) Shell. They dwelled in Rogers, OH.
  • Granddaughter Ruth Sarver ( ? - ? ) was joined in wedlock with (?) Devanney. Her home circa 1990 was in Ohiopyle, Fayette County and in 2001 in nearby Chalk Hill, Fayette County.
  • Grandson Artie Sarver Jr. ( ? - ? ) lived in Confluence, Somerset County.
  • Grandson Howard B. "Punk" Sarver (1926-2001) was orn on Feb. 1, 1926 in Ohiopyle. He married Thelma I. Shipley ( ? - ? ). The family established a residence in Markleysburg, Fayette County. Nine children born in to their union were Howard B. Sarver, Clifford I. Sarver, Ronald N. Sarver, Danny Sarver, Terry Sarver, Debbie Fortner, Brenda Nicholson, Patrick Sarver and Lisa Sarver. Howard served in the U.S. Armed Forces during World War II. He spent his career as a heavy equipment operator for the Utility Forestry Service Inc. He belonged to the Amvets Post 103 and the Confluence post of the Veterans of Foreign Wars. The Sarvers retired to Florida and made a home in the town of Eustis, Lake County. Howard died in Eustis at the age of 74 on Jan. 20, 2001. The remains were transported back to Somerset County for funeral services led by Rev. Clifford L. Sarver and burial in Sansom Chapel Cemetery. The Somerset Daily American published an obituary.

Daughter Rose L. Sarver (1888- ? ) was born in Nov. 1888.


~ Daughter Elizabeth Margaret (Sarver) Miller ~

Daughter Elizabeth Margaret "Lizzie" Sarver (1863- ? ) was born on May 27, 1863 in Somerset County, PA.

On Feb. 4, 1883, at the age of 19, Elizabeth was united in holy marriage with Daniel Y. Miller (May 14, 1860-1944), a native of Stonycreek Township, Somerset County and the son of Yost D. and Rosanna (Eppley) Miller.


The couple's four offspring were Nelson Miller, Effie Miller, Samuel D. Miller and Minnie Hershberger.

They migrated to Indiana shortly after their wedding and put down roots in Elkhart County. Federal census records for 1900-1930 shown the in Middlebury Township. They were farmers and raised poultry on their property six miles northeast of Goshen, Elkhart County.

The family joined the Clinton Frame Mennonite Church in 1899 and remained members for the rest of their lives.

Sadness cascaded over the family when Elizabeth died in 1943. The funeral was held in the family church. Burial was in Miller Cemetery in Goshen. A funeral notice was published in the South Bend Tribune.

Daniel only outlived her by a year. The angel of death cut him away at home on April 23, 1944. An obituary said he was survived by seven grandchildren, two foster grandchildren, 11 great-grandchildren and 10 foster great-grandchildren.

Son Nelson Miller (1884-1938) was born on March 9, 1884 in Middlebury Township, Elkhart County. Circa 1906, he was united in matrimony with Carrie Vida Simmons (1884-1966). Together, the couple produced five children -- Mary Elizabeth Stutsman, Bernice Higgins, Mrs. Paul Hoke, William Miller and Ralph Miller. The family residence was six miles northeast of Goshen, Elkhart County. In early 1938, he contracted a life-threatening illness and suffered for six months. Death whisked him away at the age of 54 on Oct. 13, 1938. Following funeral services in the family residence, burial was in Pleasant View Cemetery north of Goshen. An obituary was published in the South Bend Tribune.


Horse-trading in process in Goshen, Indiana


  • Granddaughter Mary Elizabeth Miller (1907-1994) married Ralph Stutsman. They lived in Goshen in 1938.
  • Granddaughter Bernice E. Miller (1908-1988) wedded Theodore Higgins. The family dwelled in the late 1930s in Goshen.
  • Granddaughter (?) Miller ( ? - ? ) was joined in matrimony with Paul Hoke. Their residence was in Romeo, MI in 1938.
  • Grandson William Eugene Miller (1911-1998) put down roots in Elkhart, IN.
  • Grandson Ralph Eli Miller (1912-1990) made his home in Goshen.

Daughter Effa "Effie" Miller (1886-1940) was born on Feb. 28, 1886 in Indiana. At the age of 24, on Jan. 18, 1911, she wedded Samuel J. Naugle (1886-1953), a native of Windber, Somerset County. The pair raised two foster daughters, Mary Etta Maloney and Mrs. Clarence Lambright. The family lived five miles southeast of Middlebury, and they held memberships in the Clinton Frame Mennonite Church. Effie developed a serious illness in late 1939. She bore her sufferings for a year as her health declined. She surrendered to death at the age of 54 on Nov. 20, 1940. Funeral services were held in the Clinton Frame church, jointly officiated by Rev. Ira Johns and Rev. D.D. Troyer. Her remains were laid to rest in Miller Cemetery. An obituary appeared in the South Bend Tribune. Samuel remained a widower for four years and then married a second time to Mary Good ( ? - ? ). Samuel was in the news in September 1941 when Lyle Frederick Gage, the 14-month-old son of their housekeeper Matilda Gage, drowned in the fish pond on their farm. The couple is known to have spent the winter of 1952-1953 in Sarasota, FL. Samuel died without warning in Sarasota on Feb. 13, 1953. The body was transported back to Middlebury for funeral services in the family church. Again Rev. Johns preached the funeral. Burial was in the Miller Cemetery.

  • Foster granddaughter Mary Etta Maloney (1902-1975) was born on Jan. 31, 1902. On Jan. 2, 1924, she married Theodore T. Blough (June 27, 1904-1984), a native of Middlebury Township. Their home for years was in Goshen, with an address in 1975 of 402 Center Street. Five children born to this union were Donald E. Blough, Richard L. Blough, Robert T. Blough, Elizabeth Schrock and Kay Cottingham Sr. Theodore earned a living with the U.S. Postal Service, retiring in 1970. The family belonged to St. Johns Catholic Church. Their son Donale E. Blough joined the U.S. Navy and was trained in 1956 at the Great Lakes Naval Training Station. Mary suffered a stroke in early 1975 and suffered for six months until death carried her into eternity, at the age of 73, on July 13, 1975. Rev. James Cis led the funeral mass, with interment in Violett Cemetery. An obituary in the South Bend Tribune named her surviving siblings as Mrs. Harry Granger, Mrs. Waitman Johnston and Robert A. Maloney. Theodore outlived his wife by about eight years. His final seven months were spent as a resident of Greencroft Nursing Center in Goshen. He succumbed to death at the age of 79 on Jan. 16, 1984. His Tribune obituary said he had "lived all his life in the area." His survivors were counted as 16 grandchildren and 14 great-grandchildren. Theodore's funeral mass, held in the family church, was presided over by Rev. Laurence Tippmann.
  • Foster granddaughter (?) wedded Clarence Lambright. They put down roots in Shipshewana, IN.

Son Samuel D. Miller (1887-1977) was born on July 16, 1888 east of Goshen, Elkhart County, IN. He grew up on the family farm in Middlebury Township, Elkhart County. On Sept. 8, 1912, he was united in the bonds of matrimonial union with Katharine Stahly (Dec. 25, 1889-1975), a native of LeGrange County. They became the parents of a daughter, Mrs. J. Earle Roose. The Millers lived in Goshen for decades, with an address in the 1970s of 213 South Sixth Street. He was employed for 38 years by the Goshen Milk Division. The family were members of Eighth Street Mennonite Church. Sadly, Katharine died on Sept. 23, 1975. Samuel lived for another two years and in March 1976 moved into Fountainview Place. He passed away at the age of 90 on Dec. 10, 1977. As had been done for Katharine, Samuel's funeral was led by his pastor, Rev. Paul L. Goering. The remains were lowered into the sacred soil of Miller Cemetery. His obituary in the South Bend Tribune noted that he "was a lifelong resident of the community."

  • Granddaughter (?) Miller was united in wedlock with J. Earle Roose.

Daughter Minnie Miller (1890-1961) was born on June 16, 1890 in Elkhart County, IN. On Oct. 9, 1913, when she was 23 years of age, she entered into marriage with Milo Hershberger (Oct. 2, 1892-1964). Milo was a native of LaGrange County, IN. One son born in the family was Alvin W. Hershberger. They dwelled for decades in Middlebury Township, Elkhart County. Milo earned income with employment at Starcraft Inc., and retired in 1957. Socially, he held memberships in the Goshen lodges of the Moose and Odd Fellows. The family belonged to the Clinton Brick Mennonite Church. Minnie died at the age of 70 on March 5, 1961. Rev. John J. Yoder and Rev. Amsa Kauffman jointly conducted the funeral service, held in the family church. Burial was in Forrest Grove Cemetery southeast of Middlebury. The South Bend Tribune printed an obituary which reported that "she had lived all her life in this area." The widowed Milo survived for another three years at the address of 715 South 14th Street in Goshen. He died alone at home in the morning hours of Dec. 6, 1964, with his body found later that day by a neighbor. His pastor Rev. Yoder again preached the funeral service.

  • Grandson Alvin W. Hershberger (1915-2007) was born on July 6, 1915 in Elkhart County. He stood 5 feet, 6 inches tall, weighed 120 lbs., and had blue eyes and blond hair. At the age of 25, in 1940, he was single and worked for Arthur Schrock of South Sixth Street in Goshen. Alvin dwelled in Middlebury Township for many years. In May 1940, he was joined in matrimony with Oma Kalb (1916-2014), daughter of Oscar A. and Vera Alta (Sheets) Kalb. They were the parents of three -- Julia Davidhizar Schrock, Connie Mast Knepp and Lee L. Hershberger. Sadly, their son Lee died at age three in August 1950, with funeral services held in the Silver Street Mennonite Church. Circa 1964, Alvin was elected to the board of education of Middlebury Community Schools, with the news reported in the South Bend Tribune. He remained on the board for six years and was named as board secretary in 1968. The Hershbergers marked their 25th wedding anniversary in May 1965 with a dinner at Miller's Country Restaurant near Middlebury. Alvin died at the age of 92 on Nov. 19, 2007. Oma survied him by seven years, dying in 2014. They sleep side by side in Forest Grove Cemetery near Middlebury.


~ Daughter Emma J. (Sarver) Hillegass ~

Daughter Emma J. Sarver (1866-1934) was born on June 18, 1866.

Circa 1885, when she would have been 19 years of age, she was joined in the bonds of matrimony with William Vincent Hillegass (1860-1921), son of John and Agnes (Riffle) Hillegass.

The couple bore 10 chidren together -- Garnet Hillegass, Daniel Hillegass, Bernard Hillegass, Elmer Hillegass, Thomas Hillegass, Blanche Straub, Vincent Hillegass and Marie Harkinson plus two who died young, prior to 1910.

The Hillegasses moved about a number of times over the years. They were in Johnstown, Cambria County (in 1886), Buena Vista (1889) and in Adams Township, Cambria County (1900). William's occupation in 1900 was farming.

By 1910, they migrated to a farm in Emma's home region of near New Baltimore in Allegheny Township, Somerset County, with Berlin as their post office location.

After the move to New Baltimore, William was "widely known in that section of the county as 'Applebutter Bill' by reason of his large production of apples and applebutter," said the Meyersdale Republican.

On the fateful afternoon of April 7, 1921, having not felt well for several days, William "was able to get about the house and yard," said the Republican. "Last Thursday while going to the barn with a pail of water, he dropped over. His wife was at the house and saw him fall. She hastened to him, but he breathed only a few times and expired." He was age 59 at death.


St. John's Catholic Church, New Baltimore -- the famed church along the Pennsylvania Turnpike -- where William and Emma Hillegass were members.


For the last 15 years of her life, Emma was burdened with hardening of the arteries. She suffered a stroke in late February 1934 and lingered for 13 days before being swept away by the angel of death on March 11, 1934, at the age of 67. Burial of the remains was beside her husband's in St. John the Baptist Catholic Church Cemetery in New Baltimore, Somerset County. Vincent Hillegass of Berlin, PA signed the official death certificate. An obituary in the Republican noted that the count of her survivors included 30 grandchildren and six great-grandchildren. A funeral mass was sung in the family church.

Son Garnet Thaddeus Hillegas (1886-1966) was born on April 1, 1886 in Johnstown, Cambria County, PA. He was united in matrimony with Savilla Baumgardner ( ? - ? ). They lived in rural South Fork, near Johnstown, Cambria County, PA. He was employed as a railroad engineer. He suffered a heart attack and was admitted to Conemaugh Valley Memorial Hospital, where he died at the age of 80 on May 22, 1966. Howard Hillegas of South Fork was the informant for the official Pennsylvania certificate of death. Interment of the remains was in Forest Lawn Cemetery in Johnstown.

Son Daniel L. Hillegass (1889-1938) was born on June 29, 1889 in Buena Vista, PA. He was joined in wedlock with Nellie Bray ( ? - ? ). The couple dwelled in South Fork Borough, near Johnstown, Cambria County, PA. He earned a living as a fireman for the Pennsylvania Railroad Company. Grief blanketed the family when the 49-year-old Daniel, who had endured an enlarged heart and heart valve disease, succumbed to the angel of death on Sept. 22, 1938. Burial was in Geistown, Cambria County.

Son Bernard Samuel Hillegass (1891-1975) was born in 1891. He resided in Johnstown, Cambria County, PA. Death swept him away in 1975.

Son Elmer Hillegass (1894- ? ) was born in about 1894. In adulthood he lived in New Baltimore, Somerset County.

Son Thomas Hillegass (1897-1946) was born on May 18, 1897 in Johnstown, Cambria County. He wedded Ann Jenkins ( ? - ? ). The Hillegasses were in Ferndale near Johnstown, Cambria County, PA in the 1930s and 1940s. The family's address was at 392 Ferndale Boulevard. Thomas was a longtime mailman with the U.S. Postal Service. Thomas developed pneumonia in February 1946 which led to phlebitis of both legs and then a pulmonary embolism. He died at the age of 48 on March 21, 1946 as a patient in Conemaugh Valley Memorial Hospital in Johnstown. The body was taken for burial to New Baltimore, Somerset County.

Daughter Blanche Hillegass (1899- ? ) was born in 1899. She wedded (?) Straub. She made a residence circa 1934 in Johnstown, Cambria County, PA.

Son Vincent Hillegass (1902- ? ) was born in about 1902. He made his home with his widowed mother near New Baltimore in 1934.

Daughter Marie Hillegass (1905- ? ) was born in about 1905. She married (?) Harkinson. Her home in 1934 was in South Fork, near Johnstown, Cambria County, PA.


~ Daughter Rose Ann Sarver ~

Daughter Rose Ann Sarver (1868- ? ) was born in 1868.

More about her life will be added when learned.


Copyright 2021 Mark A. Miner