Mary E. (Mayle) Croston Hunter was born on Oct. 31, 1873 (or 1871 or August 1873) in Barbour County, WV, the son of Hiram "Poke" and Margaret (Minerd) Mayle.
Mary married her first husband, Charles "Charlie" Croston (1866-1899?), a native of Maryland and the son of Ferdinand and Rosanna (Male) Croston.
They produced six known children -- Estaline Ross, Hulda Jane Newman Mayle, LeRoy E. "Roy" Croston, Mabel Mayle, Stella Fletcher Norris and Lona M. Croston.
In 1894, at the birth of their son Leroy, and again in 1896, when daughter Stella was born, they resided at Laurel Creek, Barbour County.
By 1900, when she was age 26, and he 34, Mary or Charlie had separated, or perhaps he had died. The census of 1900 shows Mary and her children living under the same roof in Philippi, along with 71-year-old boarder William "Alexander" Hunter (1829-1924). In what appears to be a duplication, the census-taker also recorded three of the Croston children making their home with their grandparents Poke and Margaret Mayle.
Mary and her boarder were a match, and they were married. The nuptials took place on June 20, 1903, by the hand of Rev. J.F. Chenowith. Alex, a native of Augusta County, VA, was age 69 at the time, and Mary just 30, although she disclosed her age as 48 on the marriage license.
~ Alex Hunter's Life Before Mary ~
Alex could neither read nor write. While he did not know his age, Alex's birth date was once given to a census-taker as February 1829. His specific birthplace in Augusta County is unknown, but as a black man in southern Virginia in the 1830s, '40s, '50s and early '60s, he most likely was a slave prior to the end of the Civil War. He may well be the same "Alexander Hunter," age 30, marked as "black" and working as a "hostler" -- stable work, watching horses for guests staying at hotels -- as shown in the 1870 census of Staunton, Augusta County.
He had been married once before. His first known bride was Lucinda Grimes (1850- ? ), also a native of Augusta County. They were wed in in Barbour County in 1871. On their marriage license he claimed to be 23 and she 22. Alex and Lucinda had at least three children together, Mary E. Hunter (born in 1874), Robert E. Lee Hunter (1879) and Frona Hunter (1889).
The 1880 census shows Alex and Lucinda and their children together, with him named as "William A." At that time, he earned a living as a day laborer in Philippi, with his race marked as "black" and his age as 38 (for a calculated birth year of 1842).
Lucinda is believed to have died sometime between 1880 and 1900. In the 1900 census, when Alex was boarding with our Mary, he was described as widowed.
~ Mary's Life with Alex Hunter and as a Widow ~
Mary and Alex had 21 years together in married life. They apparently had a daughter of their own, Anna Hunter, born in 1903.
Alex was widely known as "Uncle Alexander" and in the 1920s was considered "the most familiar figure of Philippi," said the Barbour Democrat. "During his youthful days he was one of the sturdiest specimens of humanity that ever walked.... [He] came here from Virginia many years ago, and [has] befriended and done more unpleasant tasks for the citizens of Philippi than any other man...." Demonstrating the subtle racial condescension that existed in the '20s, the Democrat added: "The Virginia Scout, as he was familiarly called, was colored, and came here in the employe of I.H. Stricker." Formally known as "Isaac H." Strickler, Alex's employer was a Confederate sympathizer and dry goods merchant who owned a store in Philippi, and also was a superintendent of capital raising in Philippi for the newly formed Merchants' and Farmers' Bank of Clarksburg circa 1852.
When the federal census of 1910 was taken, the Hunters resided in Philippi, with his age marked as 77 and hers' as 42. The census taker recorded that she was the mother of six children, all living. That year, daughters Estaline, Bell and Anna were living under their roof, as was boarder Elza Collins, a brother in law. Son Roy in 1910 was still residing with grandparents Poke and Margaret Mayle.
Alex died at the age of 90, of senility, on May 5, 1924. He was laid to rest in the Chestnut Ridge Cemetery. On his official West Virginia death certificate, Alex's race was marked as "black." The Democrat noted that he 'was one of the old landmarks and his passing makes a break in the ranks of familiar characters always look for when one returns home to Philippi to visit. His funeral was held Wednesday. He did not know his exact age, but claimed to be well past ninety years old."
Mary remained in Philippi in widowhood, and survived her husband by 16 years. In about 1932, she gave birth to a daughter, who was given the name Justine Males.
Mary appears to have had a long-term relationship with a brother in law, Elza "Elzie" Collins (1878-1965), son of Noah and Rose (Newman) Collins. The two cohabitated in 1930 and 1940. Census records for 1930 list Elza as a farm helper and in 1940 as a laborer in a public works position. As was explained by one of Mary's granddaughters, Elzie's first wife and baby had died, and in those days, when that happened, "some family would take you in." He was like a father to Mary's grandchildren.
Afflicted with breast cancer, Mary died at the age of 69 on Oct. 1, 1940. Burial was in Chestnut Ridge Cemetery. Stella Mayle of Philippi was the informant on her death certificate. A search has been made for an obituary in the Philippi Republican newspaper microfilm collection at West Virginia University, but none was found -- nothing was published.
Elza survived Mary by a quarter of a century and remained in Philippi. In May 1960, he suffered from bleeding on the brain, but did not die. He lasted for another five years, and was stricken with a massive cerebral hemorrhage, causing his death in Broaddus Hospital at the age of 87 on Feb. 5, 1965. Granddaughter Justine Croston signed the West Virginia death certificate and at the time made her home in Beaver Falls, PA.
~ Daughter Stella (Croston) Fletcher Norris ~
Daughter Stella Croston (1889- ? ) was born in June 1889 in Philippi, where she grew into womanhood.
She was married twice. Her first spouse was Charles "Charley" Fletcher (1871-1923), a native of Prince George County, MD.
The couple produced these known children -- Charles G. Fletcher, John Fletcher, Myrtle C. Fletcher, Waitman Fletcher and Branice V. Mayle. Stella was only age 16 when her eldest son was born, with Dr. C.B. Williams assisting with the delivery.
When the federal census enumeration was made in 1920, the family dwelled in Philippi, where Charley made a living by "cooking." Their near neighbors included Stella's mother and step-father and also her married sister and brother in law, Jane and Truman Newman.
Sadly, stricken with liver cancer, Charles succumbed at the age of 52 on May 15, 1923. Burial was in the Chestnut Ridge Cemetery. The death certificate erroneously may have given his age as 45.
Stella remained a widow for only less than two months. On July 14, 1923, at the age of 34, she was joined in wedlock with her second husband, 40-year-old John Norris (1883-1946), a native of Taylor County, WV and the son of Ad Norris. The nuptials were performed by John McKinzie of the local Presbyterian church. Stella's uncle Elza Collins provided information for the marriage license in Barbour County. (Other sources list John's birthdate as Jan. 16, 1889.)
John had been married previously, to Clara Mayle ( ? - ? ), and brought these known sons to the marriage with Stella -- James Norris, Elbern Norris and Hubert Norris -- and possibly also daughters Caroline Mines (or "Miner"?) and Virgie Norris.
In about 1924, the Norrises relocated to Ohio, making their new home along Hall Court in Youngstown, Mahoning County, where John had secured work as a foundry laborer. They were marked in Youngstown during the 1930 United States Census, and the families of their son Charles and daughter Branice also lived under their roof that year.
John later obtained work as a park maintenance laborer (1940) and as a laborer at a government warehouse in Youngstown (mid-1940s).
When the 1940 federal census was taken, the Norrises dwelled on Hall Court, with sons Elbern and Hubert and nine-year-old grandson Paul Fletcher residing there as well. Their address in 1946 was at 928 Hawthorne Street.
For years, John was burdened with chronic heart and kidney disease added to cirrhosis of the liver. He was admitted to St. Elizabeth's Hospital in Youngstown and he died there, on March 29, 1946, at the age of 57. His remains were placed into eternal repose in the Tod Homestead Cemetery.
Son Charles G. Fletcher (1904- ? ) was born on Dec. 23, 1904 in Philippi. At the age of 20, in 1925, he wedded 20-year-old Carolina (1905- ? ). Their two known sons were Charles G. Fletcher Jr. and Stanley Fletcher. The family lived in Youngstown, Mahoning County, OH and in 1930 Charles worked as a laborer in a foundry as did his stepfather.
Son John Fletcher (1906- ? ) was born on June 6, 1906 in Belington, near Philippi.
Daughter Myrtle C. Fletcher (1907- ? ) was born in about 1907 in Philippi.
Son Waitman Fletcher (1908-1957) was born on March 22, 1908 in Philippi. Little is known of his life. He passed away at the age of 49 in November 1957.
Daughter Branice V. (or "Banice") Fletcher (1910- ? ) was born in 1909 or 1910 in Philippi. At the age of 13 of 14, on Sept. 4, 1923, she was united in matrimony with 21-year-old William Mayle (1902- ? ). Rev. T.E. Maness, pastor of the Methodist Episcopal Church, officiated. On the marriage license, Banice fibbed that her age was 16. William Mayle and Banice's mother provided information for the application. The Mayles had one known daughter, Flora M. Mayle. The 1930 United States Census shows Branice and daughter Flora living under her mother's roof in Youngstown, Mahoning County, OH, with William's whereabouts unknown, but Branice marked as "married."
Stepson James Norris (1911- ? ) was born in about 1911 in Philippi. At the age of 19, living with his parents in Youngstown, Mahoning County, OH, he earned income performing labor for odd jobs. He was deceased by 2012 when named in the Youngstown Vindicator obituary of his brother Hubert.
Stepson Elbern Norris (1913-1980) -- sometimes spelled "Elbren" -- was born on April 9, 1913 in Philippi. When he was age 17, in 1930, he dwelled with his parents in Youngstown, Mahoning County, OH, and made a living as a foundry laborer, as did his father and half-brother Charles Fletcher. He remained unmarried through 1940, when census records show him living with his parents in Youngstown and working as a steel mill laborer. During World War II, Elbern enlisted in the U.S. Armed Forces on June 2, 1942. After the war, he continued his labors as a steelworker into the early 1950s and perhaps beyond. Evidence shows that on Jan. 30, 1952, at the age of 39, he was united in marriage with a cousin, 18-year-old orphan Thelma Mayle (1934- ? ), daughter of Elijah and Beatrice (Minor) Mayle of the family of George Riley Minard. The ceremony was held in Mahoning County. On the marriage license, Thelma fibbed that she was age 21 and not 17, and Elbern did likewise, as 33 instead of the actual 39. At the time, Elbern resided at 316 Plum Street in Youngstown, and Thelma at his old home address of 928 Hawthorne Street in Youngstown -- she apparently had moved in with Elbern's family after the death of her father in 1949. Sadly, Elbern died at the age of 66 in January 1980 in Youngstown.
Stepdaughter Caroline Norris ( ? - ? ) married (?) Mines (or "Miner"). She was deceased by 2012.
Stepdaughter Virgie Norris ( ? - ? ) was deceased by 2012.
Stepson Hubert Norris (1922-2012) was born on July 19, 1922 in Philippi. He relocated to Youngstown, Mahoning County, OH with his parents and siblings. At the age of 18, in 1940, he lived at home. At the age of 21, on Jan. 18, 1944, he was joined in holy wedlock with Edna Green ( ? -1995). The couple made their home in Canfield, Mahoning County and produced seven children -- Hubert T. Norris, Dennis Norris, William Norris, Stephen Norris, Benjamin Norris, Ida Heard and Betty Scott. Hubert served in the U.S. Army during World War II. For more than two decades, he was employed by the City of Youngstown Sanitation Department. Sadly, Edna died on April 20, 1995, terminating their marriage which had lasted for more than half a century. Hubert survived his wife by 17 years. "He loved watching westerns, fishing and dearly loved his family," reported the Youngstown Vindicator. Hubert passed away at the age of 89 on Feb. 19, 2012
~ Daughter Hulda "Jane" (Croston) Newman Mayle ~
Daughter Hulda "Jane" Croston (1890-1975) was born on Aug. 8, 1887 in Barbour County. Her birth record, on file in the Barbour County records, shows the 1887 date to be correct.
She wed Truman Newman (1883- ? ) in Philippi on Aug. 27, 1904, when she was age 13 or 14 (though the marriage certificate states 17), and Truman was 21. He was the son of Nathaniel "Nathan" Newman and Mary "Ellen" (Collins) Newman Collins, and grandson of Levi and Polly (Mayle) Collins..
In all, Jane had six known children -- Raymond J. Newman, Robert Newman, Mary Jane Norris, Wyoman (or "Wyona" or "Yomia") Mayle, Andrew Newman and Clifford Minard.
When the federal census enumeration was made in 1910, the Newmans dwelled in Philippi, with Truman working as a coal miner. At the time, they had been married for six years and had two children living out of the three that had been born to them.
In 1920, when the census again was taken, the Newmans made their home in Philippi, where Truman labored as a coal miner. In that listing, the census-taker initial marked the family as "colored" but later cross out the "C" and instead marked "B" for "black." Residing next door was Jane's sister and brother in law, Mary and Alex Hunter.
The Newmans separated after the births of their children -- with Jane making her home in Coshocton, Coshocton County, OH and Truman in Philippi.
Truman lived in Philippi in 1964 at the time of death of their son Raymond. He is believed to have died in Grafton, Taylor County, WV on July 1 (or 24), 1975, but this too needs to be affirmed.
Jane married a second time, to widower Columbus "Lafayette" Mayle (March 15, 1884-1960), the son of Aaron and Amanda (Collins) Mayle. He and his first wife Augusta Lurene (Mayle) Mayle (1887-1925) -- daughter of Chester and Lacy Ann (Mayle) Mayle -- had produced nine children which he brought to his marriage with our Jane. They included these known names -- Lawrence Mayle, Dow Junior Mayle, Annie Mason Jefferson, Charles Y. Enis Mayle, Nettie Mayle, James Mayle, Georgia Jackson, Bertha Newman and Canzetta "Dimples" Johnson.
Prior to his marriage with Jane, Columbus and family had made their home circa 1920 in Harrison County, WV where he was a coal miner. Then in 1930 he dwelled in Philippi, where his unmarried daughter Georgia and daughter and son in law, Annie and Harold Mason, lived under his roof. That year, he labored as a coal miner, while son in law Harold Mason was a truck driver.
Jane and Lafayette apparently relocated to Canton, Stark County, OH. In failing health, he moved into the home of their daughter Georgia Jackson in Coshocton, Coshocton County, OH in December 1959. He died in the Jackson home on Jan. 15, 1960. On obituary in the Coshoction Tribune said that he "had been a local resident for one month." His remains were returned to Philippi for burial. The Tribune obituary noted that he also was survived by sons Enis Mayle of Canton and Don Mayle of Philippi.
Circa 1964, Jane made her home in Coshocton. That year, in July, heartache shook her world when her son Raymond, age 56, died in Philippi after a long illness. The following year, the Barbour Democrat reported that she was in Canton.
Jane survived her husband by 15 years, also outliving her sons Raymond and Andrew. She made her home at 937 East Granham Street, Canton. She died in a hospital in Cambridge, OH, while visiting her daughter Georgia, at the age of 84 on April 11, 1975. Jane's remains were returned to Philippi for burial in the Welch Cemetery, following a funeral in the Chestnut Ridge Church, led by Rev. Frank Peoples.
Staggering the mind, Jane's obituary in the Barbour Democrat reported that she was survived by 59 grandchildren and 60 great-grandchildren.
Son Robert Newman (1906-1984) was born on the Fourth of July 1906 in Philippi. At the age of 24, on Aug. 20, 1930, Robert married 16-year-old Ethel Mayle (Jan. 30, 1912-2002), daughter of Maude Collins. Ethel's maiden name also has been given as "Marteney." The nuptials were held in Philippi. the Newmans produced these known offspring -- Arnold Newman, Wilma Jean Miner Henry, Maude "Jane" Marshall, Lovear Newman and Stanley Eugene Newman. Circa 1935, during the depths of the Great Depression, the family lived in Upshur County, WV. By 1940, they were back in Philippi, with federal census records showing that Robert had no occupation that year. Robert lived in Canton circa 1965 and is named in the Barbour (WV) Democrat obituary of his brother Andrew. Robert died on Jan. 5, 1984 and rests for eternity in Barnett Ridge Cemetery, located in Barlow, Washington County, OH. Ethel survived him by almost 18 years. She passed away on Feb. 1, 2002.
Son Raymond J. Newman (1908-1964) was born on Feb. 6, 1908 in Barbour County, most likely in or near Philippi. He married Nellie (Mayle) Rhoden (Aug. 12, 1916- ? ), the daughter of Henry and Minerva Mayle. Their wedding nuptials took place on Sept. 28, 1935, when he was age 27 and she 19. Rev. M.C. Harris performed the nuptials. The couple produced these four known children -- Franklin J. "Frank" Newman, Bonnie Mayle, Raymond Junior Newman and Henry "Dwayne" Newman. Two step-children were part of this family -- Kenneth Newman and Sharon Deloris Humphreys. The Newmans later separated and divorced, with Raymond remaining in Philippi and Nellie making her home in Canton, Stark County, OH. Raymond was employed as a laborer in and around Philippi. He passed into eternity at the age of 56 on July 21, 1964, and his remains were placed into eternal rest in the Welch Cemetery in Philippi. His Barbour County death record listed his parents as "Truman Newman" and "Aulda Jaye Mayle." The Barbour Democrat published an obituary which said he was survived by 11 grandchildren. Nellie's fate is not yet known but will be reported here when discovered.
Son Andrew Newman (1911-1965) was born on Sept. 3, 1911 (or 1909). At the age of 19 and unmarried, he boarded in 1930 in the home of his uncle, Elza Mayle, in Philippi, and had no occupation. He apparently never married, and spent his years as a farmer in the steep hilly terrain of Barbour County. At the age of 53, he died in Philippi's Brosaddus Hospital of an intestinal infection on July 22, 1965. An obituary in the Barbour Democrat noted that funeral services were conducted in the Chestnut Ridge Church, with Rev. J. Franklin Peoples preaching. He was buried at Welch Cemetery in Philippi. His death certificate in Barbour County records his father as "Thurman Newman" and "Hulda Jane Mayle."Daughter Wyoman Newman (also spelled "Wyona," "Yomia" or "Wyonia" or "Wyomia") (1911-1990) was born on May 18, 1911 in West Virginia. On Dec. 2, 1931, in Philippi, she married widower Floyd Mayle (May 1898-1975). She was age 20, and he 33, at the time of the wedding. (On the marriage license, he fibbed that he was a bit younger at 30.) Floyd was the son of James P. and Mary Ellen (Norris) Mayle. He had been married once before to Margarett "Margie" Norris (1910-1931), daughter of William and (?) (Mayle) Norris, and had produced several sons, among them an unnamed infant who died in 1930, Charles G. Mayle and Harwood Mayle. While in childbirth in 1931, the 20-year-old Margie was stricken with an infection of the deep veins in her leg ("phlegmalia alba dolens") and gangrene of the foot, added to tuberculosis, and succumbed on June 20, 1931. Floyd suffered even more heartbreak when their newborn son Harwood died at age six months on Oct. 25, 1931. Less than six months after becoming a widower, Floyd married our Wyoman. They went on to bear 10 children of their own who lived to adulthood: Donald Eugene Mayle, Herbert L. Mayle, Dorothy (Mayle) Mayle, Harold Mayle, Carney "Studbolt" Mayle, Irene Mayle, Franklin Monroe "Peter Rabbit" Mayle, Elfreda Mayle, Sandra Fisher and Wanda Brandon. Sadly, other of their children died in infancy, among them Wilmer Mayle in 1938, one unnamed in 1948 and son John Bertis Mayle in 1953. They lived in Philippi circa 1940-1964-1975. In 1940, when the federal census was taken, Floyd worked as a laborer for the Works Progress Administration (WPA). That year, Floyd's 35-year-old brother William made his home under their roof. The census-taker recorded them all as "negro." Floyd passed away in 1975. Wyoman survived for another 15 years and joined him in eternal sleep in 1990.
Great-grandson Donald Rufus Mayle (1956-2016) was born on Aug. 10, 1956 in Philippi. He relocated to Alliance, Ohio and married Patricia Kay ( ? -living). Their family of children included Rachel Christina Mayle, Angel Rebecca Watson, Bobbie Jo Husted, Nicole Mote and Kevin Wolak. Donald was carried away by the Angel of Death in Ohio on Aug. 4, 2016. His remains were placed into eternal rest in Bethlehem Cemetery in Malvern, Carroll County, OH. Grief blanketed the family again on Jan. 9, 2019 when daughter Rachel died in Mary Washington Hospital in Fredericksburg, VA at age 39. Pastor Ron Mayle, of Canton's New Covenant Church, led her funeral service.
Great-granddaughter Tressie Lynn Mayle (1971-2019) was born on April 6, 1971 in Barbour County. At the age of 30, in 2001, she was joined in holy wedlock with Thomas B. Swiger ( ? -living). They made a home on Maple Avenue in Philippi and were the parents of Destiny Stemple and T.J. Swiger. Tressie was a homemaker and liked to travel. Sadly, at the age of 48, she passed away in United Hospital Center on July 22, 2019. Her remains were placed into eternal repose in Welch Cemetery.
Great-grandson Michael Todd Mayle ( ? -living) made his home in Philippi in 2019.
Great-grandson Timothy Lee Mayle ( ? -living) married Amanda and dwelled in Philippi.
Great-grandson Brian Keith Mayle ( ? -living) resided in 2019 in Philippi.
Great-granddaughter Virginia relocated to North Carolina and in 2010 lived in Ramseur, NC.
Great-granddaughter Candy wedded Nick Anderson. Their home in 2010 was in Asheboro, NC.
Great-granddaughter Irene Michelle Mayle dwelled in Philippi.
Great-grandson Ron Christopher Mayle married Cassie. They were in Philippi in 2010.
Daughter Mary Jane Newman ( ? - ? ) married (?) Norris. Circa 1975, they lived in Germany. Nothing more is known.
Stepson Lawrence Mayle (1904- ? ) was born in about 1904.
Stepson Dow Junior Mayle (1906-1968) -- also spelled "Dowl" -- was born on Feb. 16, 1906. On Sept. 6, 1933, at the age of 27, he was united in wedlock with Phyllis Newman (1918-1981), daughter of Columbus "Lum" and Della Alberta (Kennedy) Croston Newman. (Phyllis' half-sister Masalona "Lona" Croston wedded Dow's distant cousin, Marion Francis "Frank" Miner of the family of George Riley Minard.) They produced five children -- among them Glenn Mayle, Bennie Mayle, Johnnie Mayle, Barbara Jane Collins and Genevieve Mayle. The federal census enumeration of 1940 shows the young family in Philippi, with Dow earning a living as a road laborer. He died on Sept. 22, 1968. Phyllis survived him by 13 years and passed into eternity at age 62 in March 1981. They rest for eternity in Welch Cemetery.
Step-daughter Annie Mayle (1908- ? ) was born in 1908. She married Harold Mason (1905- ? ) in about 1924, when she was age 16 and he 19. They lived with her widowed father in Philippi in 1930, when the federal census was taken. By 1940, they had relocated to Cleveland, Cuyahoga County, OH. In 1975, her name was Annie Jefferson, and resided in Cleveland. She was deceased by 2003.
Stepson Charles Y. Enis Mayle (1911- ? ) was born in about 1911. He was wedded to Alpha (Jackson) Wilson (1918-1998), daughter of Harvey H. and Addie A. (Norris) Jackson of Morgan County, OH. Prior to her marriage with our Charles, Alpha was married to Walter Wilson, resided in Zanesville, OH and had produced a son, Walter S. Wilson. Charles and Alpha went on to produce children of their own, among them Delbert Mayle, Saundra Mayle, Laura M. Scott, Charles Mayle, Charlotte Mayle, Donna Mayle, Susan Mayle and Cora Ann Wilson. Alpha died at home on June 25, 1998. Charles was deceased before 2003.
Stepdaughter Nettie Mayle (1915?- ? ) was born in about 1913.
Stepson James Mayle (1919? - ? ) was born in about 1919.
Stepdaughter Bertha Mayle ( ? - ? ) wed (?) Newman. She lived in Moatsville in 2003.
Step-daughter Georgia Mayle (1921- ? ) was born in 1921. At the age of nine, having been rendered motherless, she lived with her father and married sister and brother in law Annie and Harold Mason in Philippi. In her early 20s, she bore two children, Clifford Minard and Mary Jane (Minard) Norris. Later, she wed Virgil A. Jackson ( ? - ? ). Virgil is believed to have brought one son of his own to the marriage, Virgil Jackson Jr. Upon their marriage, Georgia and Virgil went on to produce 11 children of their own -- Dora May Jackson, Janet Jackson, Wayne Jackson, Betty Jackson, Ralph Jackson, Berkey Jackson, Wanda Jackson, Lorraine Jackson, Rachel Jackson, Geraldine Jackson and Gerald Jackson. Circa 1947, they lived in Barbour County. That year, on June 22, 1947, tragedy struck when eight-month-old daughter Dora May was found dead in bed. Her tender remains were laid to rest in the Chestnut Ridge Cemetery. By 1960, they had moved to Coshocton, Coshocton County, OH with an address of 349 North Sixth Street. Georgia made her home in Cambridge, OH in 1975. Her fate is not known, other than she was deceased by 2003.
Step-daughter Canzetta "Dimples" Mayle (1924 -2003 ) was born on June 16, 1924 in Philippi. She married (?) Johnson. She resided in Philippi in 1960 and in rural Moatsville in the early 2000s. In all, her children were Forest Edward Mayle, Sandra Victoria Kennedy, Danny Lee Mayle, David Allen Johnson and Silvanus E. Johnson. Sadly, son Forest died at age five months in Philippi on Dec. 3, 1953. Canzetta was a member of the Peoples Chapel Church on the Chestnut Ridge and of the Peoples Chapel Ladies Aid. Sadly, while staying at the home of her daughter Sandra near Flemington, she died at the age of 79 on Dec. 2, 2003. Rev. Ruston Seman officiated at the funeral service and burial at Welch Cemetery. A newspaper reported that she was survived by 14 grandchildren and several great-grandchildren.
~ Son Leroy E. "Roy" Croston ~
Son Leroy E. "Roy" Croston (1893-1976) was born on Feb. 11, 1894 (or 1894) at Laurel Creek, Barbour County. His birth record, on file in Barbour County, shows the 1894 date to be the correct one. He was labeled upon birth as "black."
After his parents separated, he was raised in part by his maternal grandparents.
Leroy married Dora Bell Dalton (May 3, 1900-1991). They were eight years apart in age.
They had 10 children, of whom eight are known: Mary Croston, LeRoy Croston, Theodore Croston, Levonia Miner, Jacob A. "Jake" Croston, Bradford Croston, Lavonia Croston, Ester Rose Croston and Raymond Croston.
Sadly, son Raymond died at the tender age of two months, nine days on May 16, 1939 in Meriden, near Philippi. County records show that no physician was in attendance at Raymond's death. Heartache struck again in 1942 at the death of their two-year-old daughter Ester due to a toxic intestinal infection.
The U.S. census for 1930 lists the family residing in Philippi with Leroy working as a coal miner. When the federal census count was taken in 1940, the family lived in Philippi, where Leroy earned a living as a road laborer for the Works Progress Administration (WPA). Willie and Emaline Minard, of the family of George Riley Minard, were their next door neighbors.
By 1942, the Crostons had migrated to Canton, Stark County, OH where they remained for good. Their home in 1942 was at 2021 Blecker Place NE and later on Trump Road.
Leroy died in Canton in June 1976. Nothing more about him is known.
Dora Bell survived her husband by 15 years. She passed into eternity at the age of 90 on Jan. 17, 1991 and was laid to rest beside her husband in Section B of Evergreen Memorial Gardens in Stark County.
Daughter Mary Croston (1918- ? ) was born in about 1918 in Philippi. She was deceased by 2001.
Son Theodore Croston (1924-1986) was born on Feb. 25, 1924 in Philippi. On April 23, 1943, in Canton, he is believed to have enlisted in the U.S. Army. After the end of World War II, he returned to Canton. In January 1976, he was charged with aggravated burglary in Canton and two months later, in March 1976, he was charged with aggravated assault in the mugging of a Canton woman. He died there on April 8, 1986 at the age of 62.
Daughter Lavonia Croston (1925-2001) was born on Feb. 11, 1925 in Philippi. She married Hoy Miner (1920-1981), son of Marion Francis "Frank" and Masalona "Lona" (Croston) Miner, and grandson of George Riley Minard. See their entry for more.
Son Jacob A. "Jake" Croston (1929-1971) was born on April 13, 1929 in Philippi. During the Korean War, he served as a private in the U.S. Army. He died on Oct. 25, 1971, at the age of 42. Interment was in Evergreen Memorial Gardens in Louisville, Stark County, OH. Nothing more is known.
Son Bradford Croston (1933-2012) was born on Jan. 25, 1933 in Philippi. As a teenager, he worked as a construction laborer and lived in Canton, Stark County, OH. On June 6, 1950, in Canton, the 17-year-old Bradford married 17-year-old Eileen Virginia Mayle (March 18, 1933-2011), daughter of Rockford and Dollie (Kennedy) Mayle of Ohio -- grandson of William Mayle and Lacy Kennedy and step-grandson of Octavius "Tave" Mayle. (Bradford fibbed on his marriage license application, giving his age as 19.) The couple eventually divorced. In about 1986, when he was age 53, he was united in marriage with Vera Tiedemann ( ? - ? ). The couple dwelled in Canton, and their union lasted for 26 years until Bradford's death. In all, he had six children -- Linda Mayle, Sheila Parsons, Hope Kennedy, David A. Croston, Eric Croston, Paul Croston and Gerald Bowe. Reported a local newspaper, Bradford "retired from Laborers Local 1015 where he was employed as a laborer and their business agent." He also was a member Canton's Church of God Saints in Christ Church. After enduring a long illness, he passed away on July 22, 2012, at the age of 79, in the Mercy Medical Center. Interment was in Evergreen Memorial Gardens, with Rev. Marvin "Jack" Mayle officiating at the funeral. Former wife Eileen died at Mercy Medical Center at the age of 7 on Nov. 9, 2011. Rev. Marvin "Jack" Mayle led her funeral service.
Daughter Louanna Croston (1936-2008) was born on Sept. 30, 1936 in Philippi or Canton. (Records differ, but Philippi seems more accurate as per census records when she was very young.) She migrated to Canton as a young girl with her family. She married Jonas I. Tanner (July 5, 1930-1996). They made a home in East Canton and had six known offspring -- Timothy Tanner, Cathy Tanner, Charlene Tanner, Lonas Leon Tanner, Phillip Keith Tanner and Martin Curtis Tanner. They were members of the Church of Christ in Robertsville. Sadly, Jonas died on April 16, 1996 in East Canton. As a widow, Louanna remained in East Canton and survived her husband by a dozen years. Her address in 2000 was 1215 Youtz Avenue Northeast. She passed away in Mercy Medical Center at the age of 71 on Sept. 12, 2008. Interment was in Evergreen Memorial Gardens near Canton, with Rev. Mark Mayle leading the funeral. At her death, she was survived by 10 grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.
Daughter Ester Rose (or "Esther") Croston (1940-1942) was born on March 11, 1940 in Philippi. Stricken with acute peritonitis and septicemia, she died in Canton's Little Flower Hospital on May 13, 1942, at the age of two. The examining surgeon marked her as "white." Her remains were transported back to Philippi for interment.
~ Daughter Estaline (Croston) Ross ~
Daughter Estaline (or "Esterline") Croston (1896-1974) was born on July 3, 1896 (or 1893 or 1895 or 1897). Her official West Virginia birth record in Barbour County fixes the 1896 date.
At the age of 17, on Christmas Day 1910, Estaline married 32-year-old William Ross (1878- ? ), a native of Vance County, North Carolina. Providing his consent to the marriage was Estaline's step-father, Alex Hunter. Rev. M.V. Turner of Grafton performed the ceremony at "the Bend of the River" in Barbour County, perhaps suggesting the couple was in transit at the time, or at a favorite spot in nature.
Estaline and William produced three children -- Pauline Ross, Nettie Marie Evans Shearers and Doris Virginia Ross. Many of their descendants still live in the area of Canton, Stark County, OH; others are as far away as Alaska.
When the 1920 census was taken, the Rosses lived in Philippi, with William employed as a coal miner.
The 1930 census shows the family living in Philippi, and William continuing his longtime labors in coal mining.
William is believed to have died during the 1930s.
Estaline is said to have been involved with a man of Italian heritage and bore their son, Richard Lee Ross.
Later, Estaline went on to have a relationship with Carl Mayle (or "Male") which produced these children, Robert Lynn Ross, Kenneth Ross, Nina Rose Torrence and John Bruce Mayle.
Baby John developed pneumonia, and with no physician in attendance, died within 19 days of birth on April 20, 1935. The child's remains were interred on Chestnut Ridge.
By 1940, when the census count again was made, the 43-year-old Estaline was head of her household in Philippi and marked as widowed. In addition to five of her children, Carl Mayle was listed as living under her roof as a lodger and working for the Works Progress Administration (WPA). At that time, she lived next door to her mother and uncle, Elza Collins.
Estaline and Carl eventually relocated to Canton, Stark County, OH.
Estaline died in Canton on Feb. 15, 1974 at the age of about 77. Her remains were placed into eternal repose in West Lawn Cemetery in Canton. [Find-a-Grave]
Daughter Nettie "Marie" Ross (1912-1980) was born on March 15, 1912 in Philippi. She married widower Cas Morgan Evans (Nov. 20, 1886-1973) on April 8, 1936, at Elkins, Randolph County, WV. Cass was a native of Georgia and was twice Nettie's age. He had been married before to Lonie Anthony ( ? -1933) and had come to Barbour County, WV from Georgia circa 1917. He brought a family of children to the marriage. The Evanses had at least one daughter, Betty Joann Evans Walker. When the federal census was taken in 1940, Cas headed a household in Elkins which included a daughter and son in law, Rosalie and James Daniels, and other children including Brazgie Evans (age 20), Nellie Inez Evans (14) and Roy Evans (13). At the time, Cas earned a living as a truck driver for Kelly's Foundry in Elkins. Nettie is not shown in the household that year. Cas retired from the foundry and relocated to Jamestown, Greene County, OH, where in the early 1970s he made his home with his son John L. "Sparky" Evans at 22 Adams Street. After an illness of three years, he was admitted to the Fairborn Nursing Home in Xenia. He died there a day later on Jan. 6, 1973, at the age of 85. An obituary in the Xenia Daily Gazette reported that he was preceeded in death by three daughters and a son. Rev. James V. Chunn of Cincinnati performed the funeral service, with burial in Jamestown Cemetery. Later, Nettie wed (?) Shearers. She passed into eternity a day before her 68th birthday on March 14, 1980, in Canton.
Great-granddaughter Patricia Walker has published several poems on Minerd.com, among them "7-07-07 - Revive Us Again" (2007) - "Erase Me, O'Lord" (2012) - and "Satan Watch Your Back" (2017). She is a talented artist in Canton who has found a niche drawing Pro Football Hall of Fame enshrinees, and in the early 1990s created and exhibited her works at the Canton Hilton Hotel and the Parke Hotel in Jackson Township. Reported a Canton newspaper, football legends Earl Campbell, Tex Schramm and Jan Stenerud have all asked for her original work or for prints. Her creations also have been on display at the annual Hall of Fame Champagne Brunches.
Daughter Doris Virginia Ross (1913- ? ) was born on Dec. 7, 1913, at Philippi. She wed Naison (or "Neeson") Mayle (April 3, 1913-1962), son of Sylvester "Sell" and Rosetta "Millie" (Croston) Mayle of Meriden, near Philippi. At the time of their nuptials, on Oct. 17, 1939, both were age 26. A few years before marriage, Naison along with Jesse Mayle and Guy Parsons had been fined and received jail time for violating liquor laws. In the early 1960s, Neeson made his home in Moatsville, Barbour County. He was stricken with cancer of the left lung and had the organ removed in a surgery procedure called a "pneumonectomy." He was admitted for treatment to the Hopemont Sanitarium in Preston County, WV. After a stay of 44 days in the sanitarium, Neeson suffered a heart attack and died on May 8, 1962, at the age of 49. His remains were laid to rest in Philippi's Welch Cemetery. His death certificate disclosed that he was "never married."
Daughter Nora "Pauline" Ross (1916- ? ) was born in 1916.
Son Robert Lynn Ross (1925-1997) was born on Nov. 13, 1925 in Philippi. He migrated to Canton, Stark County, OH. He died there on Dec. 4, 1997.
Son Kenneth J. Ross (1930-living) was born in 1930 in Philippi. In about 1950, at the age of 20, he married 19-year-old Matilda J. Newman (April 17, 1931-2015), the daughter of Moses and Rhoda Newman. The Rosses relocated to Canton, Stark County, OH. Their five children were Kenneth "Kevin" Ross Jr., Beverly Ross Ellis, Charlene Ross, Pamela Ross and Timothy Ross. They also helped raise on of their grandchildren, Robert Ross. In all, the Rosses remained together for 64½ years. Sadly, Mathilda died at the age of 83 on Feb. 24, 2015. Rev. Marvin "Jack" Mayle preached the funeral service. An obituary in the Canton Repository noted that all of her living children resided in Canton.
Son Richard Lee Ross (1930-1995) was born on June 9, 1930 in Philippi, Barbour County, WV. He resided in Canton and married Elaine Plattneadies (Nov. 26, 1917-1989), who was 13 years older than he. She was a native of Monaca, Beaver County, PA and the daughter of Nicholas and Georgiana (Otey) Plattneadies. Sadly, Elaine passed away at the age of 72 on March 13, 1989, in the Canton area. She was interred in West Lawn Cemetery in Canton. Richard survived his wife by six years. He tragically lost his life in a house fire on Sept. 13, 1995. At the time his sister Nina's family lived directly across the street in Canton. [Find-a-Grave]
Daughter Nina Rose Ross (1933-2003) was born on Feb. 2, 1933 in Philippi, Barbour County, WV, the daughter of Carl Mayle and Estaline. Nina Rose grew to adulthood and wed Daniel Torrence (April 20, 1924-1976). They resided in Canton. The couple is believed to have produced 10 children, among them Yvetta Torrence, Ronnie Torrence, Tony Torrence, Jeffrey D. "Jeff" Torrence, Carl Torrence, Bruce Torrence, Daniel "Squally" Torrence, Sandy Meeks, Michael Torrence and Janet Torrence. Heartache shook this family when son Michael died shortly after birth. Sadly, Daniel passed away at the age of 52 in April 1976. Nina outlived her husband by more than a quarter of a century. She died in Canton at the age of 70 on Dec. 3, 2003. Her remains were interred in West Lawn Cemetery in Canton. [Find-a-Grave]
Daughter Janet Yvonne Ross (1939-2013) was born on Aug. 5, 1939 in Philippi, the daughter of Estaline Ross and Carl Mayle. She grew up in Canton and is believed to have married Jack C. Ross ( ? - ? ). She had four children -- Jack Phillip Ross, Darla Ross, David Ross and Eric Ross. They resided at 2116 Eighth Street Northeast in Canton. Tragedy rocked this family on Oct. 5, 1971 when two-year-old son Jack was struck and killed by a moving automobile at the corner of Gibbs Avenue Northeast and Hiner Place. In 1991, Janet relocated to Alaska, settling in Anchorage. Her children went with her. She is said to have been "a true bingo Queen who enjoyed playing cards, going to casinos and reading as well as watching detective and horror stories." Sadly, she outlived her son Jack. Janet died in Anchorage on March 26, 2013. She was survived by 16 grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren.
~ Daughter Lona M. Croston ~
Daughter Lona M. Croston (1898- ? ) was born in June 1898.
She has proven not to be the same "Lona Croston," daughter of Dan and Alberta (Kennedy) Croston, who wed Marion Francis "Frank" Minard (also spelled "Miner") -- son of George Riley and Sarah Ann (Croston) Minard -- in Philippi on Oct. 21, 1918.
~ Daughter Mabel (Hunter) Mayle ~
Daughter May Belle (or "Mabel") Hunter (1898-1922), was born in 1898 near Philippi. Whether her father was Charles Croston or William Alexander Hunter is not yet known, but she went by the maiden name of "Hunter."
At the age of 19, on Feb. 10, 1917, Belle wed 21-year-old Homer Mayle June 23, (1896-1984), son of Chester and Lacy Ann Mayle. Rev. Alexander Mason performed the nuptials in Meriden, near Philippi. (In an interesting twist, May Belle's sister Jane married widower Columbus "Lafayette" Mayle, whose first wife was Homer's sister, Augusta Lurene (Mayle) Mayle.)
They had three children, Harter Mayle, Thurwood Mayle and Justine Croston.
When the federal census was taken in 1920, the Mayles lived along Meriden Road in Philippi, with Homer laboring as a coal miner.
Tragedy struck in 1922 following the birth of their daughter Justine. May Belle developed an infection and was transported by train to the hospital in Grafton. She was unable to rally her health, and died just a month and four days after the birth, at the age of 24. No official record of her death in West Virginia has been found. Recalled the daughter many years later, "They didn't take no penicillin back then." Their baby daughter was taken in to raise by May Belle's mother.
The 1930 census shows Homer as an inmate in the Barbour County Jail in Philippi. He was detained there "pending investigation into the death of Lottie Trimble, 32, Jan. 8," reported the Pittsburgh Press. "A skull fracture caused her death. Police said the woman lived at Mayle's residence and he reported her injury received in an auto accident." The official West Virginia death certificate for the 36-year-old Lottie (1893-1930) showed her as "separated" and her parents as Jack and Mirl Mayle. The county coroner wrote: "Fractured skull + The manner in which injury incurred and person or persons inflicting same to Jury unknown."
He apparently was released and made his way to Canton, Stark County, OH, following a pattern of migration made by many of the Mayles over the decades.
Homer married a second time to Lettie B. Mayle (1909-1996), born in Maryland, the daughter of William Octavus Mayle and Lacy Kennedy and step-granddaughter of Octavius "Tave" Mayle. She brought a daughter to the marriage, Cornella R. (Cunningham/Mayle) Thompson Curtis, whose father was Ed Cunningham. They produced these additional children -- Arkie Mayle, Luvena Hill and Joyce F. Mayle.
Homer died in Canton in December 1984, with burial in Evergreen Memorial Gardens in Louisville, Stark County.
Lettie survived him by a dozen years, and may have married again to Byron Ramsey ( ? - ? ). She passed into eternity in Canton in 1996, at the age of 87, with interment beside Homer.
Son Harter Mayle Sr. (1918-1973) was born on April 3, 1918 in Philippi. He was a veteran of World War II and moved to Canton, Stark County, OH. Harter married Mary H. (?) (1924-2000). They had two known sons -- Harter Mayle Jr. and Jeffrey Luke Mayle. He died in Canton on Aug. 7, 1973. Burial was in the Henry Warstler Cemetery in Stark County. Mary survived her husband and endured the deaths of both of her adult sons. She passed away in Holmes County, OH on March 18, 2000. An obituary was printed in the Canton Repository. She rests for eternity beside her husband.
Son Thurwood Mayle (1920-1937) was born on April 18, 1920 in Philippi. His first name also has been spelled "Therewood." He died of lobar "double" pneumonia at the age of 17, on Jan. 6, 1937, at Meriden near Philippi. Burial was in Chestnut Ridge Cemetery.
Daughter Justine Mayle (1922-2018) was born in about 1922 in Philippi. She was rendered motherless when she was just a month and four days old, and was raised in the home of her grandmother Mary Elizabeth Hunter and grand-uncle Elza Collins in Philippi circa 1930, when she was age eight. To Justine, Elza was like a daddy, but when she called him by that name, he'd say, "No, I'm not your dad." When she was age 17, in about 1939, Justine was united in wedlock with 20-year-old Shirley Croston (1919-1981), son of Grover Cleveland and Sophronia (Norris) Croston. They produced one daughter, Charlotte Ann Myers. When the federal census enumeration was made in 1940, the Crostons dwelled in Philippi, with Shirley working as a road laborer. By 1941, they relocated to Koppel near Beaver Falls, Beaver County, PA, where Shirley obtained employment with the Kobuta plant of Koppers Company. Later, he got a job with Arco Polymers. The family attended the Morado Faith Tabernacle in Beaver Falls, and Shirley held an associate membership with the New Galilee Veterans of Foreign Wars. Sadly, having suffered what the Beaver County Times called "a lengthy illness," Shirley passed away at the age of 62 in the Medical Center of Beaver County on Oct. 10, 1981. Following a funeral service led by Rev. James E. Eckles of the Morado Faith Tabernacle, his remains were placed into eternal repose in the Reformed Presbyterian Cemetery in New Galilee, Beaver County. An obituary was published in the Times, which listed his surviving siblings as Denver Croston of Koppel, Troy Croston of Beaver Falls, Charles Croston of Beaver Falls, Vennie Dalton of Moatsville and Lucille Shanor of Beaver Falls. Justine survived her husband by a remarkable 36 years. She volunteered as a Bible school teacher. Said the Times, "in her free time she loved to travel." During the summer of 2017, she and the founder of this website spoke by telephone. She died at the age of 95 on Jan. 16, 2018, as a patient at Beaver Valley Nursing and Rehabilitation Center. An obituary in the Times noted that burial was private.
Great-granddaughter Rhonda Myers wedded Randy Nichol.
Great-grandson Greg Myers married Debbie.
Great-grandson Kevin James Myers married Diana Golnik, daughter of Clyde and Janet Leist of Big Beaver, Beaver County. In 1994, they produced a son, Kevin James Myers II, as noted in the Beaver County Times.
Great-granddaughtere Jennifer Myers was joined in marriage with Tony Trammell.
Homer's step-daughter Cornella R. Mayle (1928-2010) was born on April 26, 1928 in Canton. She wed John Garfield Thompson (Jan. 6, 1923-2007), son of Clinton and Alice (Norris) Thompson of Philippi who had moved to Bethel Ridge, Plantsville, OH in about 1931 when John was age eight. Cornella and John spent their years in Canton and produced eight children -- Charlotte Newell, John Thompson, Jack Thompson, Carolyn Rinard, Zunna Cruse, Crystal Thompson, Lisa Thompson and Yolanda Smith. John spent 35 years employed by Gibbons and Grable Construction Company, a job from which he retired. The couple eventually divorced. Comella later married Edward Curtis ( ? - ? ). Reported the Canton Repository, she "was a very hard worker and loved her family unconditionally. She was very close to God and will always be remembered as a loving mother and grandmother." At the age of 82, she died on June 28, 2010. Interment was in Evergreen Memorial Gardens following funeral services led by Rev. Walter Moss. Former husband John "Garfield" Thompson died in Canton's Aultman Hospital at the age of 84 on Oct. 27, 2007, with his funeral services held at the Mt. Hermon Church in Sharpsburg, OH, led by Pastor Phil Mayle.
Homer and Lettie's son Arkie Mayle (1944-2013) was born on June 12, 1944 in Canton. In 1997, when he was age 53, he married Helen ( ? - ? ), who brought a daughter to the marriage, Susie Louive. The Mayles dwelled in Malvern, OH. Arkie spent 11 years working for Union Metal Manufacturing, a position from which he retired. At the age of 68, in Malvern, he passed away in the Great Trail Care Center on March 13, 2013.
Homer and Lettie's daughter Luvena Mayle was joined in matrimony with (?) Hill.
Homer and Lettie's daughter Joyce F. Mayle (1945-2002) was born n Sept. 21, 1945 in Canton. She apparently did not marry and spent her life in the Canton area, where she attended the Faith Cathedral Church. She passed away in Canton's Aultman Hospital at the age of 56 on Jan. 2, 2002. Rev. Dan Wilfong officiated at her funeral service, followed by burial in Evergreen Memorial Gardens.
~ Daughter Anna Hunter ~
Daughter Anna Hunter (1903- ? ) was born in 1903 near Philippi.
At the age of 27 in 1930, unmarried with no occupation, she dwelled with her widowed mother and uncle Elza Collins in Philippi.
Nothing more about her is known.
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