William G. Miner was born on June 26, 1864 near Humbert, Somerset County, PA, the son of Henry A. and Matilda (Rose) Miner.
He was a longtime coal miner who met a tragic fate in a streetcar accident.
As a teenager, William migrated with his parents to Connellsville, Fayette County, PA, where his father found work laboring in the booming coal and coke industry.
On Feb. 23, 1887, William was joined in matrimony with his first wife, Alice Amanda Kuhns (possibly also spelled "Koonce" or "Koontz") (1868-1910), the daughter of Peter and Sarah E. (Young) Kuhns, and a native of Allegheny County, PA. The ceremony was performed by justice of the peace Thomas R. Torrance. William was age 24 at the time, and Alice 19.
The Miners produced a family of these known children -- William Harry Miner, Meda Venetta Buttermore, Minnie M. Parker, Lillian "Lillie Belle" Belle McDowell Walters, Espy Leroy Miner and an unnamed infant.
Over the years, the family dwelled in a variety of places, following available coal mine jobs. These include Westmoreland County, PA (1887), Dunbar (1893), Connellsville (1900), Hempfield Township (1902-03), Continental #2 (1907), Allison, Fayette County (1916) and Morgantown, Monongalia County, WV (1920s-30s). William is known to have been a farmer at Continental #2 and a fireman in the Allison Mine in 1916, and also to have worked as a railroad brakeman at one time.
On Feb. 7, 1907, while living in Uniontown, the Miners lost an unnamed infant son at age three days due to inanition (exhaustion from lack of food and water). The county coroner wrote on the death certificate, "No doctor." Burial was in Walnut Hill Cemetery in Connellsville.
Heartache rocked the family on Nov. 17, 1910, when Alice, only age 42 and afflicted with neuralgia of the heart, died at their home in Swaugertown, near Connellsville. The Connellsville Daily Courier said she "was well and favorably known in and around Swaugertown." Alice was laid to rest in the Hill Grove Cemetery in Connellsville. Her faded grave marker erroneously is inscribed with a year of death as "1911" when in reality it should be "1910" -- possibly suggesting that it was not installed until many years later, perhaps at the time William died in 1932.
After Alice's death, William re-married after a year, on Nov. 29, 1911, to Sarah A. Morris ( ? - ? ), age 49, a resident of Smithfield, Fayette County, and the daughter of Victor and Jennie (?). Their nuptials were performed in Uniontown by the hand of Rev. J.S. Bromley. The marriage license shows that Sarah's first husband had died on Nov. 29, 1893, and thus that she had been a widow for 17 years before wedding our William. On the license, he listed his occupation as "farmer."
The Miners' marriage did not last. By 1919, he made his home in Morgantown, Monongalia County, WV.
William's third wife, whom he married on Christmas Eve 1919, was Rosa Lee "Rosie" (Walls) Rogers (1867-1939). The wedding took place in Fairmont, near her home in Mannington, Marion County, WV. She was a native of Gladesville, Preston County, WV, and the daughter of Samuel and (?) (Menear) Walls. Rosie had previously been married, and she brought six children to the marriage with our William -- Edna Brothers, Minnie Stump, Ruby Gribble, Harry Rogers, Samuel Rogers and Roy Rogers.
William and Rosie set up their housekeeping in Morgantown.
William and his large family traveled back to Connellsville to attend the McDowell-Miner-Ritenour family reunions in 1928-29-30. At the 1928 affair, at Hillcrest Park, William and his brother Grant, along with son-in-law Arthur McDowell and Emerson Ritenour, formed the planning committee. Son-in-law George Buttermore was elected chairman, daughter Lillie Belle secretary, and John Miner treasurer.
A local newspaper published a lengthy account of the McDowell-Miner 1928 reunion, and listed the following other immediate family members in attendance: Arthur and Lillie Belle's children Dorothy, Gladious, Mildred, Joseph, Thelma, Lillian and Zora, of Uniontown; John Ross and Mary Ellen (Ringer) Miner and daughter Mabel of Swaugertown Road, Connellsville; brother Grant and Drusilla (Fike) Miner and their grandchildren Wilma, Dorothy, Thomas and Robert Miner of Hillcrest Park, Connellsville; sisters Jennie (Miner) Paolone-Stevenson and Mary Ann (Miner) Richter of Connellsville; son in law and daughter George and Meda (Miner) Buttermore and their children Alice, Sarah and Esther of Mt. Braddock; granddaughter Lillie (Buttermore) and her husband Raymond Uncapher and children Florence and Junior of South Connellsville; and cousin Charles H. Rose of Normalville, PA.
The 1929 McDowell-Miner reunion was held at daughter Lillie Belle McDowell's home in Haddenville, Fayette County. "There was no set program, the older folks spending the time talking over old times while the younger folks played games and romped in the orchard," said a newspaper article. "At noon dinner was served on picnic tables under the grape arbor, covers being laid for forty persons." Attending this reunion were William's brother Grant and wife Drusilla Miner and their grandchildren Wilma and Dorothy Miner; and William's son William H. and wife Louise Miner with their sons William, Charles and Harold.
The following year, the McDowell-Miner Reunion was held at Hillcrest Park in Connellsville, and William served on the program committee along with son in law George Buttermore (president), brother John R. Miner (treasurer), granddaughter Dorothy McDowell and brother Grant U. Miner (program committee). Reported a local newspaper:
It was an all-day affair, with about 100 in attendance. After dinner there was a religious service, led by George Buttermore. Races followed. The fat women's race, run by Mrs. Charles Buttermore and Mrs. Charles Sargent of Brownsville, the former winning. The girls' 50-yard dash, ages 12 to 20 years, was won by Miss Lurleine Upton of Summit. Mrs. Ewing Hager was the oldest person to attend. She is past 81. There were several others of ripe age.
Tragedy struck in the summer of 1932 when William was age 57, working as a janitor in the Price business block in Morgantown, and residing with Rosie at 921 Charles Avenue. On Saturday, Aug. 6, he boarded a streetcar bound for Sabraton about 5 p.m. After being seated, he may have suffered a partial stroke, although he got off the car at Charles and Richwood avenues without assistance. Reported the Morgantown Dominion News, William "apparently slipped from the platform and under the car, his left leg protruding inside the rail... The car was started [again], but Miner's cries quickly brought a stop." The newspaper added that "Some said he had reached up to pat a little child leaning from a car window when the car started and that he slipped and lost his balance, the car pinning his leg between the platform and trucks. Others said one wheel ran over the leg below the knee."
He was rushed to the Monongalia County hospital, where his leg was amputated below the knee. Said the Dominion News, "a nurse said Miner was suffering from extreme shock and loss of blood." When relatives arrived, he told them, "I don't remember what happened." The Dominion News kept readers informed for several days. One article said that he "rallied Sunday and hopes were entertained for his recovery though from the time he was admitted at the hospital it was said he was in critical condition." Sadly, though, he could not overcome the devastating blow. He passed away on Monday, Aug. 8, 1932, two days after his fall and injury.
William's body was shipped to Connellsville, where the funeral was held at the home of brother Grant in Hillcrest Park. His mangled remains were laid to rest beside his first wife Alice at Hill Grove Cemetery in Connellsville.
Rosie, a widow at age 65, remained in Morgantown, at 921 Charles Avenue. She was a housekeeper, and died at the age of 72 on Sept. 1, 1939. She was laid to rest in the Pisgah Cemetery in nearby Preston County, WV.
~ Daughter Meda Venetta (Miner) Buttermore ~
Daughter Meda Venetta Miner (1887-1968) was born on Nov. 29, 1887 in Connellsville or near Greensburg, Westmoreland County.
At the tender age of 15, on June 26, 1902, she married 23-year-old George Smith Buttermore (June 18, 1879-1966), the son of Alexander and Sarah (Stillwagon) Buttermore of Connellsville. At the time, she resided with her parents in Hempfield Township near Greensburg, and he was a coal miner of Hempfield. Because she was underage, her father had to provide his consent. The wedding was held in Greensburg by Rev. A.J. Bird.
The couple produced a family of nine children -- Blanche Allen, Lilly Uncapher, Alice Martone, Esther Marie Martin Callihan, Sarah Snyder, Harry E. Buttermore, Grace Doutt, Meda Catherine Buttermore and Alexander E. Buttermore.
The Buttermores resided in Westmoreland County (1903), Connellsville (1903-1905), Indiana, Indiana County, PA (1907), Fayette City, Fayette County (1910), and finally in New Castle, Lawrence County, PA.
The family was shaken in the summer of 1910 when infant daughter Meda was afflicted with "toxic gastro ileocolitis" -- known today as Crohn's Disease. The baby died on July 10, 1913, at age one month, 13 days. Again in the spring of 1915, baby son Alexander suffered from intestinal problems and died at age three months, 29 days on Sept. 10, 1915. Their tender remains rest in the Hill Grove Cemetery.
George worked for many years as a "literature evangelist" for the Seventh Day Adventist Church. In November 1932, the church's national newspaper, The Advent Review and Sabbath Herald, reported that "On Sabbath, October 1, in the mountain waters near Mount Braddock, in the West Pennsylvania Conference, [Milton Conger] baptized five adults, who were fully consecrated to the cause, having been won to the faith by the personal effort and Bible studies of George Buttermore, one of our strong laymen. This brother is continuing his able soul-winning labors, and expects soon to present others to the Lord."
George and fellow parishioner Frank Johnston helped purchase the Adventist church building on Wilson Avenue in June 1937. Originally a small schoolhouse, the structure was remodeled and redecorated. In 1969, the congregation celebrated its 50th anniversary.
In November 1937, when the national church budgeted nearly $4.6 million for foreign missionary work, The New Castle News reported that "The local adherents of the faith, through the leadership of their local pastor, George S. Buttermore, will work enthusiastically toward raising their share of this vast sum."
They moved into the city of New Castle in 1961, making their new home at 1122 West Washington Street.
George passed away at the age of 87, on June 21, 1966, in the home of a daughter.
Meda outlived her husband by five years and suffered from hardening of the arteries. She fractured her hip in June 1968, and her health plummeted from there until the end. She moved into the Haven Convalescent Home and died there at the age of 80 on July 28, 1968. The New Castle News said she was survived by 17 grandchildren, 40 great-grandchildren and four great-great grandchildren. Her funeral was led by Elder William Cary of the Seventh Day Adventist Church, followed by burial in the Neshannock United Presbyterian Cemetery.
Daughter Blanche Buttermore (1903-1982) was born in 1903. She married her first husband Harry Allen ( ? - ? ) and resided in Oil City, Venango County, PA in 1952 -- Reno, PA in 1961 -- and in New Castle circa 1965-66. They bore two daughters -- Arabelle Baker and Betty Mae Spence. She later married Elvin Fritz ( ? - ? ) and relocated to Santa Anna, CA, where she died circa 1982. Her remains were brought back to New Castle for burial in the Castle View Memorial Gardens. The New Castle News said that she was survived by eight grandchildren and 14 great-grandchildren.
Daughter Grace Buttermore (1910-1965) was born on Sept. 21, 1910 in Fayette City, Fayette County, PA. In about 1927, at the age of 17, she married Eugene L. Doutt (1907-1991). They lived in the New Castle area for decades and had four children -- Dolores Boughter, Marlene Altman, Joseph L. Doutt and one who died young. They were members of the Seventh Day Adventist Church of New Castle. Eugene "retired in 1970 from Aetna-Standard where he worked as a welder," said the New Castle (PA) News. "He formerly worked at United Engineering in New Castle. During World War II, he served as a welding instructor." Grace died at the age of 54 on April 16, 1965. Following funeral services led by Rev. Earl Heslop, Elder Noble Shepherd of the church, she was buried in Clinton Cemetery. Eugene outlived her by more than a quarter of a century. he died in 1991, at the age of 84.
Daughter Lilly Mae Buttermore (1905-2000) was born in 1905. She married Raymond Uncapher (1902-1976) on June 16, 1922. They made their home circa 1966 in Bessemer, PA. The Uncaphers had three children -- Donald Uncapher, Florence Ramsey and Raymond Uncapher. Sadly son Donald died in infancy. Lilly "worked as a practical nurse in the New Castle area," said the New Castle News. "She enjoyed music, singing, gardening, crocheting and knitting afghans" and was a member of the Bessemer Women's Club. According to the News, Raymond "was retired from Martin Brothers Trucking Co. of Bessemer." They were members of the Seventh Day Adventist Church of New Castle. Raymond passed away on April 16, 1976, in Jameson Memorial Hospital in New Castle. Lilly outlived him by nearly a quarter of a century, and died on Dec. 3, 2000, at age 95. Burial was in Westfield United Presbyterian Church. At the time of her death, the News reported that she was survived by seven grandchildren and 16 great-grandchildren.
Son Harry E. Buttermore (1907-1994) was born on Nov. 20, 1907 in Indiana, Indiana County, PA. He married Marjorie A. Gwin ( ?- 1989), the daughter of Wilford and Charlotte M. (Doutt) Gwin. The Buttermores had three children -- Phillip Buttermore, H. Richard Buttermore and Elaine Seinkner. They were members of the First United Brethren Church. Said the New Castle News, Harry "was a retired garage mechanic from Pennsylvania Power Co. He belonged to the Coachmen's Club." Marjorie "worked at the J.C. Penney and Troutman Department stores in New Castle." Marjorie and Harry died five years apart -- she on Oct. 25, 1989 and he on April 25, 1994. They rest in the Neshannock Presbyterian Church Cemetery.
Daughter Alice Buttermore ( ? - ? ) married Theodore Martone ( ? - ? ) and lived in Chester, PA. In 1965, she made her home in Harrisburg, Dauphin County, PA. Circa 1982-2000, Alice resided in Cleveland, Cuyahoga County, OH.
Daughter Sarah "Sally" Buttermore ( ? - ? ) married Ralph Snyder ( ? - ? ) and resided for many years in Esther near Dallas, TX.
Daughter Esther Marie Buttermore (1926-1988) was born on March 9, 1926 in or near Uniontown, Fayette County, PA or in New Castle, Lawrence County, PA. (Records differ.) She was twice-married. Her first spouse was Earl Martin (April 13, 1922-2006), of Flatwoods, Fayette County. The couple resided circa 1945 in Newport, Perry County, PA. One daughter was born to this union, Linda Lu Mowry. After a divorce, Esther supported herself as a practical nurse and lived on Morton Place in Laurel, Prince Georges County, MD. At the age of 31, she again was united in the bonds of holy matrimony with World War II veteran James Russell Callihan (Sept. 18, 1923-2020), son of James E. and Mary (Farson) Callihan and a native of Parkersburg, Wood County, WV. The pair eloped to Winchester, VA and tied the knot on March 25, 1957, with Presbyterian church minister Rev. J.S. Duckwall officiating. James had been married twice previously. The couple bore at least four known children, Jimmy Callihan, Lee "Scott" Callihan, Mark Wayne Callihan and Beverly Ann Knies Williams. James earned a living over the years as a guard. In 1965, they dwelled on Stone Road in Westminster, Carroll County, near Baltimore, MD; in 1966 in Sharpsville, Mercer County, PA; and in 1968 in Columbus, Franklin County, OH. The family was plunged into grief when son Lee Scott died at age eight after a long illness on Nov. 15, 1965. Elder Howard F. Bankes officiated the funeral service, held at the Seventh Day Adventist Church in Westminster. An obituary was printed in the Hanover (PA) Evening Sun. James earned a living through his work for Gene's Landscaping Service. Circa 1982, Esther resided in Baltimore. Sadly, she died on July 6, 1988 in Reynoldsburg, OH. Interment of the remains was in Baltimore National Cemetery with her son, Lee Scott. James outlived his wife by more than three decades and married again circa 1989 to Doris ( ? -living). At the end, he dwelled in Cherry Blossom Senior Living in Columbus, OH and reached his 97th birthday on Sept. 18, 2020. Sadly, he died in his sleep just five days later on Sept. 23, 2020. Esther's ex-husband Earl Martin died in Florida on Feb. 26, 2006.
~ Son William Harry Miner ~
Son William Harry Miner (1889-1958) was born on May 8, 1889 or in 1891 in Connellsville, Fayette County. He was slender and of medium build, with blue eyes and brown hair.
William is described in Luther J. Grimm's typescript genealogy report of the Grim and Grimm families, found at the Uniontown (PA) Public Library.
He married Louise Stauffer Balsley (1887-1963), daughter of Charles H. and Isabelle (Grimm) Balsley, at Moyer, Fayette County on Dec. 28, 1912. He was age 22, and she 24, at the time. Rev. J.B. Keirn officiated. In announcing the engagement, the Balsleys placed an article in the Connellsville Daily Courier, stating that the "engagement will terminate in a December wedding." At the time, William made his home in Poplar Grove, Fayette County.
They had three children -- William E. Miner, Charles Woodrow Miner and Harold Donald Miner.
William was employed circa 1918 as an electric crane operator at the Westinghouse Electric Manufacturing Company in East Pittsburgh. He and Louise had one child at the time, and lived in Braddock at 213 Camp Avenue. He registered that year for the military draft during World War I. He worked over the years as an electrician, a sub station operator and a car operator. Their home in 1924 was in Hopwood, near Uniontown.
Circa 1932, the Miners made their home in South Uniontown, and hosted a Christmas season visit by William's brother Espy, who made his home in Cleveland. The following November, when Espy and family again visited, William and Louise lived on Mullen Street in Uniontown. In May 1935, now living in East Connellsville, they attended a surprise 50th birthday party for Mae (Balsley) Fosbrink in South Uniontown, an event reported in the Connellsville Daily Courier.
Later that year, in October, they drove to Toledo, Ohio to visit Louise's brother William M. Balsley. During that trip, reported the Courier, they "also motored to Detroit.... While in Toledo they visited Fort Meigs, Turkey Foot and Fallen Timbers." In November 1935, Louise and her sister Mae hosted a multi-party dinner for their aged father in East Connellsville, who by coincidence of fate enjoyed a birthday within a few days of Louise's son Charles and grandson Charles, along with two other Balsley family members.
William is known to have been a pallbearer at the funeral of his uncle John Ross Miner in 1935. He and Louise resided on McClellantown Road in the 1940s, at Thompson Cross Roads in 1947 and later at 64 Lenox in Uniontown. They were members of the Central Christian Church of Uniontown.
The Miners relocated again to a home at 34 Wagner Road in North Union Township. Stricken with lung cancer, William was admitted to Presbyterian University Hospital in Pittsburgh. Five days later, he passed away on Jan. 25, 1958 at the age of 68.
Louise outlived him by five years. She moved into the home of her son Harold in Lorain, Cuyahoga County, OH. She died in Harold's home on Dec. 19, 1963, at the age of 76.
Her remains were returned to Connellsville to be placed into eternal rest beside her husband at Mt. Olive Cemetery in Bullskin Township. At the time, reported the Courier, she was survived by six grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.
Son Charles Woodrow Miner (1913-1976) was born in 1913. When he was 18 years of age, he was united in holy matrimony with 15-year-old Mabel Kathryn (or "Catherine") Sickles (1916- ? ), daughter of Newton Sickles of Revere, a coal mining community near Uniontown. They eloped to Oakland, Garrett County, MD on July 31, 1931, with their nuptials taking place in the Methodist Episcopal Church, and with Rev. Dawson officiating. The news of their wedding was reported in the Connellsville Daily Courier. The couple went on to produce one son, Charles William Miner. The Miners dwelled in Uniontown circa August 1935, when they visited Charles' parents in East Connellsville for a week, an event which made the gossip columns of the Connellsville Daily Courier. When the federal census was enumerated in 1940, Mabel at age 23 headed a household in Uniontown with their six-year-old son, but Charles' whereabouts at that time are not yet known. Later, Charles relocated to New Jersey and was there in 1958. He passed away in 1976, at age 63, and is buried beside his brother William -- but otherwise alone -- in the Union Dale #3 Cemetery on Pittsburgh's North Side. Mabel's fate is not yet known.
Son William Espy Miner (1919-1986) was born on June 1, 1919 and was named in part after an uncle. He was an optician, with his practice based in Pittsburgh circa 1959. He married Margaret Hightower ( ? -1971) on Dec. 22, 1938, when he was age 19. The Miners went on to have three children -- Linda Virginia Pringle Johns, Josephine Kavanaugh Downs and William Clyde Miner. By 1941, the family had relocated to Birmingham, AL, and William is believed to have served in the U.S. Armed Forces during World War II. Later, they returned to their home region of Pittsburgh, residing at 160 Henderson Street and at 2520 Spring Garden Avenue on the North Side. William is remembered as being "hilarious" with a "crazy" sense of humor that runs in this branch of the family. Margaret passed away in Pittsburgh on April 21, 1971, with her obituary printed in the Pittsburgh Press. William survived her by 15 years. He died on March 6, 1986, at the age of 73, on Pittsburgh's North Side. Funeral services were held in the McDonald-Linn Funeral Home in Bellevue, with his obituary also published in the Press. He was buried between his wife and brother Charles in Union Dale #3 Cemetery on Pittsburgh's North Side, following a service led by Rev. Clayton Sheridan. Their grave markers were photographed by the founder of this website circa 1995.
Son Harold Donald Miner Sr. (1924-1998) was born on May 17, 1924 in Hopwood, Fayette County. At the age of 23, on June 29, 1947, he was united in the bonds of holy matrimony with 17-year-old Mary Lou Perkins (1929- ? ), daughter of coal miner William R. and Mary (Oros) Perkins of Uniontown. Together, they produced a family of two sons -- Harold Donald Miner Jr. and Douglas Alan Miner. Harold Sr. served with the U.S. Army in World War II, attached to the 6th Cavalry Reconnaisance Squadron. During the duration of the war, he was stationed in Rhineland, Ardennes and Central America. He is pictured in the book, Heroes All, a service album of soldiers from Uniontown and South Union Township. He lived in Lorain, near Cleveland, OH circa 1958-1963. After the death of Harold's father in 1958, Harold's widowed mother moved into their home in Lorain, and spent the balance of her life there. She died there the week before Christmas 1963. Circa 1981, the Miners resided at Amherst, Lorain County, OH, where Harold is believed to have been employed as a supervisor for retail shoe store businesses. He was a member of several Masons-related organizations and served a term as president of the Ohio Buckeye Club. The couple relocated to Central Florida in 1988 and settled in the town of Tavares, Lake County at the address of 3426 Manatee Road. They are known to have attended the Episcopal Church. Sadly, at the age of 74, Harold passed into eternity on Aug. 1, 1998. His remains were lowered into honored rest in Florida National Cemetery in Bushnell, Sumter County, and an obituary was published in the Orlando Sentinel. Mary Lou's fate is not yet known.
~ Daughter Minnie (Miner) Parker ~
Daughter Minnie Miner (1889- ? ) was born in 1889.
She married Gilbert Valentine Parker (1886-1964), the son of Benjamin and Margaret (Lambert) Parker of Tazewell, VA. They were wed in about 1905, when she was 16 and he was 21. He was tall, and of medium build, with grey eyes and dark brown hair. He received his middle name as a result of his birth on Valentine's Day 1886.
The Parkers bore at least eight children -- Orten D. Parker, Gestine Rosebell Johnson, Carlita V. Parker, Espy Leroy Parker Sr., Virgil Velorian Parker, Lloyd F. Parker, Everett E. Parker and Evelyn Venetta Napper (or Nappier) Harr.
In 1916, the family was in Wyoming County, WV, where daughter Gestine was born. By September 1918, when Gilbert registered for the military draft during World War I, he and Minnie made their home at 239 Charles Avenue in Morgantown. Gilbert was an electrician in a local coal mine, employed circa 1918 by Woodland Coal Company. They lived at Cass near Morgantown, Monongalia County, WV when the federal censuses were taken in 1920 and 1930. Gilbert also worked as a sawyer.
Minnie and Gilbert apparently divorced sometime after 1930.
Gilbert remarried again to Evelyn Buckland (1887-1978) of Terra Alta, Preston County. They resided on Crane Avenue in Terra Alta. Gilbert was a member of the Messenger Evangelical United Brethren Church and of the Moose lodge in Terra Alta.
He died at University Hospital in Morgantown of renal failure on July 6, 1964, at the age of 78. His obituary was published in the Morgantown Post. Burial was in Terra Alta Cemetery. Evelyn outlived him by 14 years. She passed away on Sept. 4, 1978. Their names are listed in Volume II of the 1997 book In Remembrance: Tombstone Readings of Preston County, West Virginia, authored by Janice Cale Sisler.
Minnie resided in Kingwood, Preston County, WV circa 1958, in Hutton, MD in 1960 and was back in West Virginia in 1968. Nothing more about her is known.
Son Orten Dewey Parker (1911-1969) was born on Aug. 23, 1911. During World War II, he was a private in the U.S. Army. In 1964, he made his home in Pittsburgh. He died on Nov. 4, 1969 at the age of 58, with interment in Terra Alta Cemetery. No obituary has been found in a search of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. [Find-A-Grave]
Daughter Gestine Russell "Jessie" Parker (1916-1979?) was born in 1916 in Wyoming County, WV. At the age of 18, on Valentine's Day, 1934, she wed 21-year-old Noel Isaac Johnson ( ? - ? ), a native of Monongalia County, but living at Valley Point, Preston County, WV at the time. The ceremony was held at Albright, Preston County, by Rev. Lloyd Myers of the Methodist Episcopal Church. Because she was underage, Gestine's parents had to provide their consent to the union. By 1964, she had remarried to (?) Kisner and resided in Pittsburgh. She may have died in Salem, Harrison County, WV in August 1979.
Daughter Carlita V. Parker (1920-1987) was born on Jan. 17, 1920. She was united in matrimony with (?) Savage and in 1959 lived in Pittsburgh. She died in Linesville, Crawford County, PA on Jan. 5, 1987. She rests in Linesville Cemetery, section Z, plot 103. [Find-A-Grave]
Son Espy Leroy Parker Sr. (1922-2004) was born on June 4, 1922 in Morgantown, Monongalia County, WV and named for his uncle Espy Leroy Miner. He had a grammar school education and made his home for decades in Terra Alta, Preston County. Espy in adulthood stood 5 feet, 7½ inches tall and weighed 140 lbs., with blue eyes and brown hair. He wedded Beulah R. Beatty (Feb. 3, 1929-1999). At the age of about 20, Espy was required to register for the military draft during World War II. He disclosed that he was employed at the time at a sawmill in the Whetsell Settlement near Terra Alta. On Aug. 15, 1942, he enlisted in the U.S. Army at Fort Hayes near Columbus, OH, and served as a private during the conflict. After the war, Espy returned to Terra Alta. The couple's brood of offspring included Leroy Parker, Jack Parker, Alfred Parker, Russell Parker, Patricia Spearman, Diana Sisler, Rodney Parker, Mark Parker and Jerry Parker. Sadly, at the age of 81, Espy passed away in Morgantown on March 23, 2004. Interment of the remains was in Wesley Chapel Church Cemetery in Preston County.
Great-granddaughter Candice Parker made a home in 2020 in Gore, VA.
Great-granddaughter Cristi Parker dwelled circa 2020 in Oakland, MD.
Son Virgil Velorian Parker (1923-1959) was born on Feb. 3, 1923 (or 1924). He served as a private in the U.S. Army during World War II. In 1959, he was unmarried and made his home in Hutton, MD, where he was employed as a tree surgeon. Tragedy struck on Aug. 6, 1959, while he was on a job in Parkersburg, Wood County, WV. He was electrocuted to death when his saw accidentally cut through an electrical line of 2,400 volts. He was buried in Terra Alta Cemetery. [Find-A-Grave]
Son Lloyd F. Parker (1924- ? ) was born in about 1924. He lived in Newburg, Preston County in the mid-1960s.
Son Everett E. Parker (1927- ? ) was born in about 1927. His residence in 1964 was Parkersburg, Wood County.
Daughter Evelyn Venetta Parker (1928-2008) was born on Aug. 23, 1928 in Morgantown, Monongalia County, WV. As a teenager, she dwelled near Terra Alta, Preston County. At the age of 18, Evelyn wed 23-year-old John Henry Napper (1922- ? ), son of Henry Franklin and Josephine (Shifflet) Napper. John was a native of Venton County, OH, and a resident of Millfield, Athens County, OH. They were married on June 12, 1945, at Kingwood, Preston County, by the hand of Rev. W.R. Eskew. Evelyn's father sent a written consent to the marriage, and her mother appeared in person at the county courthouse to grant her consent. In 1959, she made her residence in Parkersburg. By 1964, she had married (?) Harr and lived in Terra Alta. She died in Terra Alta on Aug. 3, 2008.
~ Daughter Lillie Belle (Miner) Nicholson McDowell Walters ~
Daughter Lillie Belle Miner (1893-1987) was born on Feb. 13, 1893 in Dunbar, Fayette County. She was married three known times.
Lillie was first married to Nelson A. Miles Nicholson ( ? - ? ), a native of Granite City, IL, on June 10, 1916. She was age 23 at the time of marriage, but the union did not last long, and they divorced.
Within just two years, she was united in wedlock with Arthur McDowell (1885-1947), a native of Chalk Hill, Fayette County.
Arthur had been married once before, to Susan Anna "Susie" Burke (July 6, 1888-1917), daughter of Andrew G.C. and Margaret (Pohlf) Burke. During the first marriage, the family had dwelled at the Herbert coal and coke works in Redstone Township, Fayette County, where Arthur plied his trade as a machinist. Tragically, Susie developed pulmonary tuberculosis followed by a gastric ulcer, and after 15 months of suffering, succumbed to death at the age of 28 on Feb. 6, 1917. Burial of her remains was in Chalk Hill Cemetery.
Thus the widowed Arthur brought several children to the second union, believed to have been Martha E. Cook, Arthur "Leroy" McDowell, Dorothy Fisher, Gladys Varndell, Thelma McDowell and Mildred Martin.
When Arthur registered for the military draft during World War I, in September 1918, he listed Lillie as his next of kin and stated they lived in house #8 in New Salem, Fayette County. He had blue eyes and light-colored hair.
Lillie and Arthur produced a family of three more known children -- Joseph McDowell, Izora Louise Miller and Lillian Estella Solomon.
Arthur and Lillie resided for many years at Haddenville, Fayette County and were members of Chalk Hill Evangelical Lutheran Church. In August 1928, they hosted a reunion of the McDowell-Miner family at their home. In reporting on the event, the Uniontown Morning Herald said that "So delightful a time was spent that all present agreed that a similar gathering should be held next year and that an effort should be made to interest an even larger number of relatives and friends.... There was no set program this year, the older folk spending the time talking over old times while the younger folk played games and romped in the orchard."
The family continued to attend the McDowell reunions during the 1930s and 1940.
When the federal census was taken in 1930, Lillie and Arthur and seven of their children lived in Haddenville. Also living under their roof that year were nine-year-old niece Thelma J. Rogers and 26-year-old brother Espy Leroy Miner. Arthur was employed as a saw mill laborer, while son Leroy, age 21, worked as a truck driver.
Arthur passed away at the age of 61 on March 6, 1947 in their home at Haddenville. Funeral arrangements were handled by the Gleason Funeral Home in Uniontown. In an obituary, the Connellsville Daily Courier reported that he was survived by 13 grandchildren.
After Arthur's death, Lillie Belle relocated to Freidens, Somerset County. She later married Henry Walters ( ? - ? ) and moved to Akron, Summit County, OH. In 1968, at the death of her sister Meda Buttermore, Lillie made her home with Henry in New Castle.
She died at Brecksville, OH at age 94 on Aug. 12, 1987, and the remains were brought back for interment in the Chalk Hill Lutheran Cemetery. Her obituary was published in the Somerset (PA) Daily American, which said that she was survived by an astonishing 20 grandchildren, 38 great-grandchildren and five great-great grandchildren.
Daughter Martha McDowell (1907- ? ) was born in about 1907. She married Wilbur Cook ( ? - ? ). Circa 1947, they resided in Kingston, NY and in 1956-1960 in Uniontown, with a residence on New Salem Road. In 1977, she was quoted in the Uniontown Morning Herald about helping a distant cousin from Long Beach, CA who was reunited with the family after watching the television mini-series Roots and making inquiries. Martha was deceased by 1987.
Son Arthur "Leroy" McDowell (1908-1983) was born on Jan. 30, 1909. He lived in Uniontown in young manhood. Circa August 1933, he attended the sixth annual McDowell Reunion, held at Shady Grove Park, and was elected to the social committee. Then in 1940, he was tapped as vice president. In May 1943, he and his wife attended a surprise birthday party for his aged uncle Grant U. Miner in Connellsville, with the news reported in the Uniontown Morning Herald. Leroy's home in 1956 was in Lake Worth, Palm Beach County, FL, at which time he spent a two-week vacation in Uniontown in the home of his sister Martha Cook. He remained in Lake Worth for years and, in 1972, returned to Uniontown to spend the Thanksgiving holiday with family. Leroy is believed to have succumbed to death at the age of 74 on March 21, 1983.
Daughter Dorothy Hess McDowell (1912-2003) was born on July 12, 1912 in Connellsville. On July 16, 1935, she married Ralph Edmund Fisher (1911-1996), a 24-year-old painter, and the son of Earl and Amanda (Barricklow) Fisher of Uniontown. Their wedding was held in Waynesboro, Franklin County, PA, performed by Rev. J.M. Rutherford. They had six known children, Joan Halbrook, Ralph E. "Junior" Fisher Jr., David Fisher and Amanda B. Fisher, and two who died in infancy. They lived in Lemont Furnace, near Uniontown. Dorothy was board treasurer of the Seventh Day Adventist Church of Uniontown and "enjoyed making quilts and blankets," said the Uniontown Herald Standard. Ralph was a devoted gardener and worked as a painter and wall paper hanger, and helped with maintenance chores at the church. He died on Dec. 30, 1996, at the age of 85, ending a marital union of 61 years. Dorothy outlived him by seven years. Tragedy rocked the family on May 29, 1999 when 17-year-old great-granddaughter Stacy Lyn Halbrook died in a vehicular accident in Berks County, PA. With her family at her side, she passed away at age 91 on Nov. 6, 2003. She was laid to rest at Christ Lutheran Church Cemetery in Chalk Hill. Surviving her at the time of her death were eight grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren.
Great-grandson Charles "David" Halbrook has been employed as assistant dean of boys and industrial arts teacher at Blue Mountain Academy in Tilden Township, Hamburg, Berks County, and his wife Denise (Holbert) Halbrook was assistant secretary at the academy. They were the parents of Stacy Halbrook, Marci Halbrook and David Halbrook. The family lived in Hamburg, Berks County in 1999. Tragedy descended upon the familyon the fateful day of May 29, 1999. Daughter Stacy, age 17, was killed while driving a van around a sharp curve on Mountain Road in Tolden Township, Berks County. The vehicle veered across the road and into a tree, rolling over and coming to rest in the middle of the road. Stacy and two others were pronounced dead at the scene, while her sister Marci, age 15, was life-flighted to Hershey Medical Center. The accident was reported in the Allentown Morning Call. The couple's home in 2021 was in New Ringgold, PA.
Great-granddaughter Brenda Halbrook appears to have been married twice. Her first spouse was (?) Walters. They were the parents of James Walters. By 2021, she had remarried to Todd Lough.
Great-granddaughter Judy Halbrook ( ? -living) was born in (?). In June 1985, she was united in the bonds of marriage with Rodd L. Lough Sr. (Oct. 1, -2017), son of Richard and Nancy (Oldland) Lough and stepson of Peggy Lough of Uniontown. Their union endured for 32 years. The only child borne of this marriage was Rodd Lough Jr. Rodd's occupation over the years was as a truck driver for a number of employers. In time he launched his own business and obtained emergency medical technician and paramedic training, and for 15 years worked for Fayette EMS and the emergency department of Uniontown Hospital. He founded PRL Transportation in 2015 and continued to work as a truck driver. He was a volunteer with the Hopwood Volunteer Fire Department and North Union Volunteer Fire Department. He also liked to hunt and spend time with his family. Sadly, Rodd suffered for years with cancer. He died at the age of 52 on Aug. 20, 2017. His funeral service was led by Pastor Yves Monnier, and interment of the remains was in Sylvan Heights Cemetery. As a widow, Judy has remained in Lemont Furnace.
Daughter Gladys McDowell (1913-2002) was born on Sept. 7, 1913 in New Salem, near Uniontown, Fayette County. She was joined in matrimony with Christopher Daniel Varndell Sr. ( ? -1986). Together, they bore a family of children -- Lillian Mae "Lillie" Dranzik, Christopher "Daniel" Varndell Jr., Arthur W. Varndell, Thomas E. Varndell and Mark W. Varndell. Their home circa 1947 was in Uniontown and in 1987-2002 was in Jeannette, Westmoreland County, PA. She passed into the arms of the angels as a resident of the St. Anne Home in Greensburg, PA on June 21, 2002. Burial of the remains was in Westmoreland County Memorial Park, with an obituary appearing in the Greensburg Tribune-Review.
Great-granddaughter Audra Dranzik was united in the bonds of wedlock with Steve Burbank. The couple did not reproduce. They dwell in Coatesville, PA.
Great-granddaughter Sandy Dranzik entered into marriage with (?). The pair together produced two children.
Great-granddaughter Jennifer Lynn Varndell (1969-living) was born in 1969 in San Diego. She is married to David Cummings, an immigrant from England. They resided circa 2021 in Vancouver, Canada.
Great-granddaughter Kristi Ann Varndell (1974- ? ) was born in 1974. She was joined in wedlock with Michael Barham of Illinois. The couple makes a home in Whitefish, MT.
Daughter Mildred Ruby McDowell (1915- ? ) was born in 1915. On Sept. 12, 1942, in nuptials held in the First Baptist Church of Columbus, GA, she married Paul A. Martin ( ? - ? ), son of Jasper H. Martin of Flatwoods, Fayette County. Rev. F.S. Porter officiated, with a wedding dinner held afterward at the Ralston Hotel. The newlyweds' first home was in Columbus. They are known to have lived in Flatwoods in the mid-1940s -- in Kingwood, Preston County, WV in 1969-2002 -- and in Delaware in 2003. The Martins were the parents of Paula Susann Taylor.
Son Joseph McDowell (1921-1988) was born on Oct. 2, 1921. He made a home in the family's dwelling in Haddenville. Circa 1987, he lived in Karthaus, Clearfield County, PA. He is believed to have died in Karthaus on Sept. 22, 1988.
Daughter Lillian Estella McDowell (1925-2018) was born in 1925 in Dunbar, Fayette County. When she was 17 years of age, in April 1942, she eloped to marry Ellis Paige Solomon (1923-2011), son of G.E. Solomon of Flatwoods, Fayette County. The couple tied the knot in the parsonage of a church in Cumberland, Allegany County, MD, where there was no waiting period for couples. Rev. A.K. Flora presided over the ceremony. Ellis earned a living at the time of marriage with employment at the National Tube Company in McKeesport, near Pittsburgh. The couple's marriage endured for an extraordinary 69 years. The offspring known to have been born to this union were Claudette Lee Solomon, Lillie Kathryn "Kathy" Overturf, Ellis Solomon, Jeffrey Solomon, Claudia Carrell, Mary Beth Lawson and Joan Solomon. During World War II, Ellis served in the U.S. Army in the role of gun instructor for B-29 bombers. The Solomons resided in 1947 in Lemont Furnace, near Uniontown, Fayette County. Ellis served in the U.S. Army during World War II and in April 1945 was stationed at Alamogordo, NM. Lillian and Ellis spent the majority of their married lives in Akron, Summit County, OH. There, he founded and ran his own business, Paige Equipment Corporation, from which he retired. They were members of Broadman Baptist Church, where he served as a Sunday School teacher and deacon. Lillian liked to quilt, walk, play the piano and bake fresh blackberry pies. Sadly, Ellis passed away on March 8, 2011, just two weeks before his 88th birthday. Funeral services were held at the family church, led by Pastor Chris McComb. His remains were transported back to his native Fayette County to be lowered into eternal repose in Bowman-Flatwoods Cemetery in Vanderbilt. An obituary was printed in the Akron Beacon Journal. Lillian outlived her spouse by seven years. At the age of 93, she passed away quietly on Feb. 15, 2018. She was survived by 14 grandchildren and 21 great-grandchildren. Rev. John McIntyre preached her funeral sermon.
Daughter Izora L. McDowell (1928-living) was born in 1928. She married Steward Miller (1918-1989), the son of William and Ada Pearl Miller. They resided in Connellsville and produced two children -- Dara Joan Loiselle and Russell Steward Miller. Circa 1987, she was in Friedens, Somerset County, PA and by 1989 had moved to Hancock, MD. Steward was a veteran of World War II, serving in the U.S. Army, and a member of the Somerset Christian & Missionary Alliance Church. He was employed for many years as an agent with the Internal Revenue Service. He died at home in Hancock on Oct. 12, 1989 at the age of 70. His remains were returned to Pennsylvania for interment in Somerset County Memorial Park. Izora has remained in Hancock for many years.
Great-granddaughter Jennifer Dawn Miller (1986-living) was born in 1986. She wedded Robert Webber ( ? - ? ). Two children were born to this union -- Eve Noel Webber and Charleston Summer Joy Webber. The couple has divorced. She attained her masters in divinity degree from Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington, DC. She currently is lead pastor for The Awakening Service for First United Methodist Church in Bryan, TX, and is pursuing her doctorate degree at Texas A&M University in College Station.
Great-grandson Bryce Russell Miller (1991-living) was born in 1991. He was joined in matrimony with Nabin "Natalie" Leem ( ? -living). Bryce received a degree in general dentistry from the University of Maryland Dental School in Baltimore. He is also certified to perform Invisalign and dental implants. He currently practices dentistry at Annapolis Dental Suite in Annapolis, MD, which he co-owns. Nabin also is trained as a dentist but will become an orthodontist upon graduation in June 2021.
~ Son Espy Leroy Miner ~
Son Espy Leroy (or "Espey") Miner (1903-1960) was born on Dec. 12, 1903 in or near Greensburg, Westmoreland County, PA.
He was only six years old when his mother died. He initially was sent to a Catholic orphanage in Greenville, PA. At some point he was taken in by his sister Lillie Belle McDowell and remained close to her his entire life.
Espy earned a living as a young man by laboring a powderman's helper in coal mines in and around Uniontown. He was married twice -- his first wife, not yet identified by name, died in childbirth. Nothing more about her is known.
When the federal census was taken in 1930, Espy lived with his married sister Lillie Belle McDowell at Haddenville, Menallen Township, Fayette County. That year, he is shown to be a widower, and his employment as a road laborer. His whereabouts were unknown by his family just two years later, in 1932, the year when his father was fatally injured in a streetcar accident in Morgantown. Over the years, Espy is said to have been a high diver in Florida, a chauffeur, and dock worker and machine shop laborer in Cleveland. As a superintendent on the docks at Lake Erie, he helped unload automobiles shipped from Detroit, and great rolls of newsprint to be used by the Cleveland Plain Dealer. He later worked in a machine shop in Alliance, OH.
In Cleveland in 1932, at the age of 28, he wed his second wife, 18-year-old Alberta Juanita Brooks (1914-1990), the daughter of Ott and Minnie Brooks of Chicota, TX. They had three children -- Marlene Louise Richards Hogan, William Lee Miner and Carole Leetta Hubert.
At the holidays in 1932, several months after the death of his father, reported the Uniontown Daily News Standard, Espy visited "for the Christmas season" with his brother William H. Miner in South Uniontown before returning home to Cleveland. Again the following November, Espy, Alberta and baby daughter Marlene motored from Cleveland to Uniontown for a visit with his brother William.
Espy endured great anxiety in about 1944 when a horrific fire in Cleveland swept through 20 to 30 city blocks. It was caused by the explosion of five large gas storage tanks near East 55th Street. With the Miner home just three blocks north, at 5456 Lake Court, Espy was consumed by fear of not knowing whether his wife and children were victims. He searched for them for four days, expecting the worst. With great relief, he found them alive and well, but it's said he never truly recovered from the experience.
Circa 1959, Espy and Alberta separated. He remained in Cleveland, while she moved to Monroe, Washington State. In July 1960, as his health was failing, he moved to a room in the home of his married sister Meda Buttermore in New Castle, Lawrence County, PA. Their address was 1824 Harlansburg Road.
Afflicted with cirrhosis of the liver, and having spent many years as a heavy smoker, the 57-year-old Espy attempted to take his own life by severing veins in both arms. Thirty hours later, he died in the New Castle Hospital on Aug. 16, 1960. In an obituary, the New Castle News reported that he was survived by five grandchildren. His remains were returned to Connellsville for interment in Hill Grove Cemetery, where his parents and grandparents also sleep for eternity. Word of his death was sent to Alberta in Washington, where she received the news three months later, in September.
After about a year as a widow, Alberta married again, to Lawrence Pattison ( ? - ? ). They enjoyed 28 years of marriage.
Alberta died in Washington on Feb. 7, 1990. Her ashes were placed at Forest Grove Cemetery in Olympia, WA.
Son William Lee Miner ( ? - ? ) made his home in Alliance, OH in 1960.