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Lawson 'Floyd' Gorsuch


Lawson "Floyd" Gorsuch was born on Nov. 13, 1887, at Maple Summit, Fayette County, PA, the eldest son of Richard M. and Martha (Minerd) Gorsuch. He was named in part for his uncle, Lawson Minerd.

Floyd and his brother in law Frank Zearfoss were among many known Minerd-Miner-Minor cousins to die in coal mine accidents.

In May 1916, at the age of 29, Floyd obtained employment as a laborer at the coal mine of George Warrick -- known as Works Coal Co. -- at Rogers Mill, near Normalville, Fayette County. While working on this job, Floyd boarded at the home of Russell Miller.

On June 26th of that year, he was instantly killed "when he was caught by a fall of slate," reported the Connellsville Daily Courier. "Men who were working near the young man heard the fall and rushed to his assistance, but life was extinct when his body was removed shortly afterwards...." An examining surgeon noted that he had suffered internal injuries.


Coal miners in the famed "Connellsville Seam" of Fayette County


An inventory of Floyd possessions shows that he had a watch, gun, suit of clothes, suitcase and trinkets, raincoat, set of shirts, lot of clothing, and two pairs of shoes.  His back wages due from the Warrick Co. totalled $40.

Floyd was buried at the Maple Summit Cemetery, near his grandparents, Charles and Adaline (Harbaugh) Minerd.

Hazel McMillan, whose relationship to Floyd is not known, provided details about him for his official Pennsylvania death certificate.


Copyright 2000, 2006, 2014, 2017 Mark A. Miner