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Mary Jean (White) Kapphan


Mary Jean (White) Kapphan was born on Sept. 10, 1895 in Pittsburgh, Allegheny County, PA, the daughter of George H. and Helen "Ella" (Daugherty) White

She was known to be living at age four with her parents and four siblings in Pittsburgh in 1900, when the federal census was taken. 

In about 1913, Mary married William H. Kapphan Jr. (1891-1985), son of William H. Kapphan Sr. A listing of their marriage license application was published in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

They were the parents of five offspring -- William G. Kapphan III, Kenneth A. Kapphan, Howard L. Kapphan, Jack Miller Kapphan and Donna Joan Bennett.

William was employed for four decades with Peoples Natural Gas Company. The 1930 federal census shows him working there as a clerk.

William's father was a concrete superintendent in Pittsburgh and was involved in the erection of the buildings for First-Second National Bank, Fort Pitt Hotel, Fort Wayne Station and Oliver building. His brother, Edward H. "Eddie" Kapphan, was a well-known owner of a piano company in Pittsburgh and a boxing manager and promoter, once serving as business manager for heavyweight champion Jess Willard and heavyweight contender Harry Bobo.

Circa 1950, the couple dwelled in the Glenshaw suburb of Pittsburgh in Wible Run Road. Mary was a member of the Hazelwood Lodge of Honor and Dames of Malta.

Sadly, at the age of 51, Ellen began suffering from heart disease and lived with the illness for three years. Then at the age of 54, she was stricken with a cerebral hemorrhage and was admitted to Shadyside Hospital in Pittsburgh, where she succumbed a day later on April 30, 1950. Interment was in Glenshaw's Mt. Royal Cemetery, with a death notice published in the Pittsburgh Press.

William survived his wife by many years. On May 8, 1952, in nuptials held at the Church of the Brethren, he wedded again to Ella Mathos ( ? -1985), a resident of Lincoln Place near Pittsburgh.

They made their home on Halchess Street. The same year, he retired from Peoples after a 40-year career and was honored with a dinner in East McKeesport in October 1952. Circa 1975, they are believed to have been in St. Petersburg, FL. The couple endured the death of son William in 1977.

Ella died on March 12, 1985. The Pittsburgh Press ran a death notice. 

Less than eight months later, William succumbed to the angel of death in St. Petersburg on Oct. 30, 1985, with the Press publishing a death notice.


~ Son William G. Kapphan III ~

Son William G. Kapphan III (1914-1977) was born in about 1914 in Pittsburgh. 

He graduated from the University of Pittsburgh, joined the U.S. Armed Forces and in 1941 held the rank of lieutenant, stationed at Fort Monroe, VA.

On Christmas Day 1941, at the age of 27, he married Elizabeth "Betty Jane" McElheny ( ? - ? ), daughter of Roy McElheny of Anderson Road. The nuptials were held in Glenshaw Community Church.

They produced daughters Sharon Eshelman and Joyce Kapphan and son William G. Kapphan IV.

Their home was on Anderson Road in Shaler Township near Pittsburgh.

William taught for 35 years in the Shaler Area School District. He was a member of the local Masons lodge, Glenshaw Presbyterian Church and national and state education associations.

Suffering from cancer, he died at home at the age of 63 on Jan. 2, 1977. An obituary in the Pittsburgh Press said that he was survived by two grandchildren. Following funeral services at Glenshaw Presbyterian Church, interment was in Allegheny County Memorial Park in McCandless Township.

Daughter Sharon Kapphan married (?) Eshelman

Daughter Joyce Kapphan

Son William G. Kapphan IV


~ Son Kenneth A. Kapphan ~

Son Kenneth A. Kapphan (1915-1994) was born on Jan. 10, 1915 in Pittsburgh.

He is believed to have served in the U.S. Army during World War II.

Kenneth was joined in wedlock with Virginia Marie Manford (Aug. 1922-2007), daughter of William Floyd and Margaret K.F. Manford.


Famed Castillo de San Marcos along Matanzas Bay, St. Augustine, Florida


They made their home in St. Augustine, FL. Virginia was employed by the Floida East Coast Railroad. He was named in the Pittsburgh Press death notice of his step-mother in 1985.

Kenneth passed away in 1994 at the age of 79. Burial was in the Manford family plot in Evergreen Cemetery in St. Augustine. [Find-a-Grave]

Virginia lived for another baker's dozen years. She joined him in death on Jan. 22, 2007.


~ Son Howard L. Kapphan ~

Son Howard L. Kapphan (1916-2000) was born in about 1916 in Pittsburgh.

He married Lucille Palma Giovane (Aug. 23, 1920-2001), daughter of Abraham and Angelina Giovane. Their marriage lasted for 64 years until the separation of death.

They bore four children -- Howard "Jack" Kapphan, Ginny Johnson, Donna Brown and Marilou Homer.

The family lived in Glassport near Pittsburgh at the address of 728 Ohio Avenue. Howard was employed for three decades by Peoples Natural Gas Company. He was a member of the Pittsburgh lodge of the Masons and the Elizabeth Boat Club. Lucille served as president of the Glassport Womens Club and Dames of Malta Lodge, helped found the Church of the Brethren in McKeesport and was active with many other community and church initiatives.

They retired in about 1971 and relocated to Fort Myers, FL. There, Howard managed the Punta Rassa Marina for seven years, until 1978. They attended the First Assembly of God Church in Fort Myers.

Howard passed away at the age of 84 on Nov. 27, 2000. An obituary in the Fort Myers News Press noted that his survivors included 14 grandchildren, 16 great-grandchildren and one great-great grandchild, spread all over the United States from Fort Myers to Seattle to Baltimore. Burial was in Fort Myers Memorial Gardens, following funeral services conducted by Rev. Bill Campbell.

Lucille only survived for a little more than five months as a widow. She succumbed on May 3, 2001, with an obituary published in the News Press.

Son Howard "Jack" Kapphan ( ? - ? ) was born in (?). In January 1965, he was united in wedlock with a fellow Slippery Rock University student, Carole Ann McKissick ( ? - ? ), daughter of Harvey F. McKissick of New Castle, Lawrence County, PA. The ceremony was held in the Epworth Methodist Church in New Castle. News of the wedding was printed in the Pittsburgh Press and New Castle News. He resided in Tuscaloosa, AL in 2001, where he was general manager of a local restaurant, The Landing.

Daughter Ginny Kapphan ( ? - ? ) was born in (?). She married (?) Johnson and in 2000 made her home in Fort Myers.

Daughter Donna J. Kapphan ( ? - ? ) was born in (?). Circa 1959, she was a student at United Airlines' stewardess training school in Cheyenne, WY. She was wedded to (?) Brown. They lived in Annapolis, MD in 2000 and in Saverna Park, MD in 2001.

Daughter Marilou Kapphan ( ? - ? ) was born in (?). She was united in matrimony with Richard James Homer Sr. ( ? - ? ). They were the parents of Richard James Homer II, Howard Homer, Heather Meixsell and Melanie Duss. The couple dwelled in Orlando, FL in 2000-2001. They endured the heartache of loss when their son Richard II died in October 2000.

  • Grandson Richard James Homer II (1962-2000) was born in about 1962. He produced a son, Richard James Homer III. Richard earned a living as a carpenter in Orlando and made his home on Shenandoah Way. He belonged to the Faith Assembly of God Church in Orlando. Sadly, he died at the age of 38 on Oct. 20, 2000. His obituary appeared in the Orlando Sentinel.
  • Grandson Howard Homer dwelled in Atlanta in 2000.
  • Granddaughter Heather Homer married (?) Meixsell. She made her residence in Orlando.
  • Granddaughter Melanie Homer wedded (?) Duss. They lived in Orlando.


~ Son Jack Miller Kapphan ~

Son Jack Miller Kapphan (1923- ? ) was born in about 1923 in Pittsburgh.

In the spring of 1952, he is believed to have been united in wedlock with Ouida Yvonne Woods ( ? - ? ), daughter of Ernest Woods of Watson Boulevard.

Evidence suggests that they dwelled in the McCandless Township suburb of Pittsburgh and were the parents of Yvonne Geisler.

Jack was named in the Pittsburgh Press death notice of his step-mother in 1985.

Daughter Yvonne Kapphan graduated from North Allegheny High School in 1978, a year before the founder of this website. She was trained in travel business by Wilma Boyd Career Schools and became employed by Amtrak in Lorton, VA. She married Denis Geisler ( ? - ? ), son of Thomas Geisler of Warrendale, PA. Their home in 1990 was on Pittsburgh's North Side.


~ Daughter Donna Joan (Kapphan) Bennett ~

Daughter Donna Joan Kapphan ( ? - ? ) was born in (?).

She wedded (?) Bennett ( ? - ? ).

She was named in the Pittsburgh Press death notice of her step-mother in 1985.


Copyright 2009, 2018 Mark A. Miner