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Mary Ann (Dull) Critchfield
(1829- ? )

Mary Ann (Dull) Critchfield was born in 1829 in Turkeyfoot Township, Somerset County, PA, the daughter of George and Christina (Younkin) Dull

In the late 1840s, she wed Jacob C. Critchfield (1830- ? ), son of John and Susan (Baker) Critchfield, sometimes spelled "Crichfield."

They had the following known offspring: Oliver U. Critchfield, John M. Critchfield, Louisa (Critchfield) Critchfield, Emily B. Critchfield, Minerva E. Hoover, William W. Critchfield, Edward M. Critchfield, Joanna Critchfield and Eleanor "Nora" Knepper, born over a 22-year sweep of time.

When the federal census was enumerated in 1860, the Critchfields made their home in Milford Township, Somerset County, where Jacob worked as a farmer. Boarding in their home as a servant was 18-year-old Sophia Jenkin (Younkin?). Their continued farming through the 1860s and 1870s as evidenced by the censuses of 1870 and 1880.

Mary Ann died sometime after 1880, but the facts are shrouded by time. Research by the late Donna (Younkin) Logan suggests that Mary Ann passed away in New Centerville, and was interred there. But this needs to be confirmed. 

~ Son Oliver U. Critchfield ~

Son Oliver U. Critchfield (1849-1942) was born on Nov. 14, 1849. At age 20, in 1870, he lived at home with his parents and had no occupation. Later, he made his home for decades on a farm in Black Township near Rockwood. 

On Aug. 28, 1887, in Somerset County, the 38-year-old Oliver married 28-year-old school teacher Kate Long (1859- ? ), daughter of Peter and Julia Long. They were a decade apart in age. Tragically, the marriage was doomed, and Kate died just four and a half months later on Jan. 13, 1888, of causes unknown. 

Oliver remained a widower for three years. Then at age 40, on March 24, 1891, he wed again to 30-year-old teacher Ruhamah Knepper (1860-1939), daughter of Frederick and Elizabeth (Lint) Knepper of Berlin Borough. The ceremony took place in his home by the hand of Rev. W.H. Settlemyer. (Sometimes Ruhamah's first name has been misspelled as "Ruhanna.") 

They apparently did not reproduce. Circa 1894, Oliver served as supervisor of Black Township. The U.S. census of 1900 shows the couple, having been married for nine years, living in Black Township with Oliver earning a living as a farmer. In 1910, 14-year-old Adam Snyder boarded in their farm home. 

Ruhamah died after suffering with heart and kidney disease at the age of 78 on Jan. 30, 1939. 

Oliver survived her by more than three years. Suffering from gastro-enteritis, Oliver died on Oct. 3, 1942, at the age of 92. Burial was in the St. John's (Sanner's) Lutheran Church Cemetery, and a brief obituary was printed in the Meyersdale Republican. Adam A. Snyder, with whom they had lived in Rockwood, was the informant for both of their death certificates. A small flat stone marks his final resting place.

Berlin's Main Street, looking east from the lower diamond

~ Son John M. Critchfield ~

Son John M. Critchfield (1852-1921) was born on July 29, 1852 (or 1842). He lived in Rockwood and was a longtime farmer. In about 1875, when he was 23 years of age, he wed Angelina "Annie" Hay (1855-1936), daughter of William and Mary Martha (Laupe) Hay. They produced six known children -- Charles Critchfield, Howard Critchfield, Martha Critchfield, Laura Critchfield, Florence Critchfield and Edna Hay. In April 1883, when he was age 31, John is believed to have purchased a 65-acre farm from Somerset County Director of the Poor Hoover, for the price of $2,600. The federal census of 1900 shows this family making its home in near Rockwood in Milford Township, Somerset County, with John working as a farmer, and sons Charles and Howard as farm laborers. That year, boarders Joseph Kather and William Fenton lived in their home, and the census-taker spelled John's surname as "Kritchfield " Suffering from cancer of the bowels, he died on Aug. 10, 1921 at the age of 79. Burial was in the Rockwood IOOF Cemetery. [Find-a-Grave] Son Howard was the informant on his Pennsylvania death certificate. Angie survived her husband by 25 years. Burdened with hardening of the arteries and cystitis, she died at age 81 on July 6, 1936.

Son Charles B. Critchfield (1879-1958) was born in July 1879. On June 2, 1900, at the age of 21, John wed 23-year-old Etta H. Ansell (1877-1955), daughter of Michael and Barbara Ansell. Rev. J.T. Balliet officiated. Etta passed away in 1955, with burial in the Rockwood Odd Fellows Cemetery. Charles followed her to the grave three years later, in 1958.

Son Howard D. Critchfield (1881-1964) was born in June 1881. He may never have married. He died in 1964, and is buried in the Rockwood IOOF Cemetery.

Daughter Martha Mary Critchfield (1885- ? ) was born in July 1885. She grew to womanhood learning the skill of a seamstress. When she was age 20, on Jan. 8, 1905, she married 24-year-old carpenter William David Wable (1881- ? ), son of Hiram M. and Sarah Wable of Rockwood. Rev. W.H. Landis led the wedding ceremony.

Daughter Laura Critchfield (1888- ? ) was born in April 1888. At the age of 16, on Jan. 24, 1904, she was united in marriage with Joseph C. Banford (1882- ? ). A liveryman, he was the son of Charles and Ellen Banford of Rockwood, and six years her senior. Because she was underage, her parents had to sign their consent to the union. In a ceremony in the Critchfield home, Rev. Hiram King officiated.

Daughter Florence May Critchfield (1892- ? ) was born in May 1892 in Milford Township. She waited until in her 30s to marry, remaining at home with her mother after her father's death. On April 1, 1926, when she was 33, she was joined in matrimony with 37-year-old Alva Millard Tressler (1889- ? ). He was the son of Simon Millard and Martha M. (Shaffer) Millard of Meyersdale, Somerset County, and was employed at the time as a railroad engineer. Rev. H.L. Logsdon officiated in the ceremony held at Rockwood.

Daughter Edna Critchfield (1894-1982) was born on July 23, 1894 in Milford Township. She married Rockwood clerk Edwin F. Snyder (1892-1975), son of Francis and Mary Ellen (Coleman) Snyder, on Aug. 23, 1914. Rev. W.A. McClellan of the Reformed Church performed the nuptials in Rockwood. The couple made their home in Garrett, Somerset County and had two children -- Anna Mary Willison and John F. Snyder. Said the Meyersdale Republic, Edna "was a member of Grace United Church of Christ of Garrett and the Willing Workers Society of the church. She was charter member of ladies auxiliary of Garrett Vol. Fire Dept. and ladies auxiliary of Garrett American Legion, also a 50 year member of Trinity Chapter No. 138 [Order of the Eastern Star], Somerset." Edwin served as president of the First National Bank of Garrett, having been employed with the bank for 57 years, beginning as cashier. He was a member of the Pennsylvania Bankers Association for a half century and a member of the Mason s lodge in Meyersdale, the Shriners of Altoona and Hebron Royal Arch. Edwin passed away in Sacred Heart Hospital in Cumberland, MD at the age of 83 on June 21, 1975. Edna died at age 87 on Oct. 9, 1982 in Somerset Community Hospital. At the time she was survived by four grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren. Burial was in the Rockwood IOOF Cemetery.

~ Daughter Louisa T. (Critchfield) Critchfield ~

Daughter Louisa T. Critchfield (1853-1936) was born on April 16, 1853. She married Jacob B. Critchfield (1850-1924), likely a cousin, and the son of Joseph and Phoebe (Cunningham) Critchfield. Jacob had grown up on the Alexander Coffroth farm in Milford Township, and attended the Lutheran church. They made their home in Rockwood, where Jacob was a lumberman and sawmill worker. They had these known children, Jacob "Clarence" Critchfield, James D. Critchfield, Ruth E. May, Elmer T. Critchfield, Norman B. Critchfield, Grace Souser, Mary Coleman and (?) Critchfield. Jacob died of tuberculosis of the lungs on June 18, 1924, at the age of 74, and is buried in Rockwood. Enduring heart and kidney problems, Louisa suffered a stroke and died at age 82 on Jan. 5, 1936. J.C. Critchfield of Rockwood signed her death certificate. Burial was in the Rockwood Odd Fellows Cemetery. [Find-a-Grave]

Son Elmer T. Critchfield (1875-1944) was born on March 22, 1875 in Rockwood. As a young man of 24, he lived at home and assisted his father as a clerk in the lumber business. He wed Lillian M. Wiltrout ( ? - ? ). The couple had two daughters, Mrs. Richard Cooper and Mrs. Don Nissley. They relocated to Harrisburg, Dauphin County, PA, where, said a newspaper, he "was engaged as a merchant..., his business transactions being mainly that of selling adding machines and typewriters." Their home was at 213 North 14th Street. Having suffered from heart disease, hypertension and hardening of the arteries, he sought medical treatment in the Harrisburg State Hospital and was admitted in the late summer of 1943. He remained a patient there until his death on April 20, 1944, some 28 days after his 69th birthday. Interment was in Oberlin, Dauphin County.

Daughter Grace Critchfield (1879- ? ) was born in August 1879. She wed Ross R. Souser ( ? - ? ). They had two known sons -- Joseph L. Souser and Ronald Souser. Their home in 1944 was in York, PA. Their son Joseph married Pauline Weber and was a self-employed manufacturer's agent, living in York.

Son Jacob "Clarence" Critchfield (1882-1960) was born in about 1882. In 1880, at age 18, he earned a living as a teamster. At the age of 20, on March 2, 1902, he wed Catherine Ann "Katie" Ansell, (1885-1977) daughter of Michael and Barbara Ann (Henry) Ansell. Their known children were Louisa Romesburg, John O. Critchfield, Charles Critchfield, Ruth Etta Sanner, Frank Critchfield and James Wilbur Critchfield. The family lived in Rockwood and were members of the Trinity United Church of Christ. Clarence passed away on Feb. 8, 1960 at the age of 78. Katie survived him by 17 years. She died in Somerset County Community Hospital at age 91 on Jan. 9, 1977. Burial was in the Rockwood IOOF Cemetery, and an obituary was printed in the Somerset Daily American.

Daughter Ruth E. Critchfield (1884- ? ) was born in about 1884. On Christmas Eve 1917, at the age of 26, she wed 33-year-old Charles F. May (1881- ? ), son of Calvin and Anna (Rush) May of Hyndman, Somerset County. At the time, he worked as a foreman and resided in Rockwood. Rev. W.A. McClellan of the Rockwood Reformed Church officiated.

Son ames D. Critchfield (1890- ? ) was born in about 1890. He relocated to Ebensburg, Cambria County, PA, where he earned a living as a salesman. There, on Oct. 9, 1912, he wed 22-year-old Laura B. Tannehill (1890- ? ), daughter of Frank and Laura Tannehill of Rockwood.

Son Norman B. Critchfield (1897-1967) was born on Nov. 30, 1897. He is believed to have been named for a prominent relative, Norman B. Critchfield, son of Joseph and Harriet (King) Critchfield, who served as Prothonotary of Somerset County and later as Pennsylvania Secretary of Agriculture. Norman lived in New York City in 1944. He died on Aug. 1, 1967 and was laid to rest in the Rockwood IOOF Cemetery.

Daughter Mary Critchfield (1885- ? ) was born in 1885. She married railroader Ross Coleman (1880- ? ), son of George Coleman, on Feb. 10, 1906. She was age 21, and he 26, at the time of marriage. Rev. W.H. Landis officiated at the ceremony held in Rockwood. In 1944, they resided in Somerset.

Daughter (?) Critchfield married Allen Myers ( ? - ? ). They relocated to Kansas and in 1944 made their home in Wichita.

~ Daughter Emily B. (Critchfield) Schrock ~

Daughter Emily B. Critchfield (1857- ? ) was born in 1857. She is believed to have married farmer Washington "Wash" Schrock (1855- ? ). If so, this couple lived next door to her parents in 1880 in South Milford Township, Somerset County, with Emma's 78-year-old grandmother Susan Critchfield living under their roof. They had three known children -- Ettie Schrock, Susan Schrock and Infant Schrock. This family has yet to be located on the 1900 federal census.

Daughter Ettie Schrock (1876- ? ) was born in 1876 in Milford Township, Somerset County.

Daughter Susan Schrock (1878- ? ) was born in about 1880 in Milford Township.

Daughter (?) Schrock (1880- ? ) was born in April 1880 in Milford Township.

~ Daughter Minerva B. (Critchfield) Hoover ~

Daughter Minerva E. Critchfield (1859-1927) was born on Jan. 14, 1859. She married Edward Hoover (1850-1928), son of Samuel and Martha (Howard) Hoover. They had at least two children, Sherman Hoover and Mae Hoover. They were longtime farmers. In 1920, their home was along Mt. Pleasant Pike in Somerset. Suffering from liver cancer, Minerva died on May 2, 1927 at the age of 68. Edward only survived her by less than a year. Afflicted with cancer of the rectum, he died at age 77 on Feb. 1, 1928. They are interred in Somerset.

Son Sherman Hoover (1883- ? ) was born in 1883. At age 37, in 1920, he was unmarried and lived with his parents, laboring on the family farm.

Daughter Mae Hoover (1888- ? ) was born in 1888. She was not married and resided under her parents' roof in 1920.

~ Son William W. Critchfield ~

Son William W. Critchfield (1861-1910) was born on March 16, 1861. He resided in Somerset County, where he earned a living as a laborer. He married Sarah Ellen "Sadie" Bromm (1862-1940), daughter of John and Hannah (Alhen) Bromm. The Critchfields had six children -- Annie O. Critchfield, Lutie F. Critchfield, Irene Critchfield, Leora Gates, Erna "Ernie" Marenna and Raymond Critchfield. In 1900, the family lived in Rockwood, with William earning money as a day laborer. Afflicted with epilepsy, he suffered from spasms and also from kidney disease. He died just a week before his 49th birthday on March 9, 1910. He was laid to rest in the Sanner Lutheran Church Cemetery in Black Township near Rockwood. His brother in law Edward Hoover of Somerset provided details for his official certificate of death. In 1920, the widowed Sadie kept a boarding house in Rockwood with her three daughters, four-year-old granddaughter Virginia Gates and boarder J.W. Brown, a railroad conductor. Sadie suffered in her last five years from heart and kidney disease. She died from their effects on June 8, 1940, at the age of 78, with interment in Rockwood.

Daughter Annie O. Critchfield (1888-1902) was born in March 1888. Just after her 14th birthday, she was stricken with typhoid fever, and died on April 20, 1902. Burial was in Sanner's Lutheran Church Cemetery.

Daughter Lutie F. Critchfield (1891- ? ) was born in March 1891. At age 26, she lived at home with her mother and was employed as a telephone operator.

Daughter Irene Critchfield (1893- ? ) was born on Dec. 15, 1893. In 1920, at age 20, she was unmarried and resided at home, working as an assistant postmistress. She continued working the post office until afflicted with an infection of the liver and kidneys, added to heart valve weakness, which led to convulsions. She had to step away from her work in July 1939, and while under a physician's treatment, died on July 30, 1940, at the age of 46 years. Burial was in Rockwood.

Daughter Leora Critchfield (1896- ? ) was born on Sept. 11, 1896. She wed James Gates ( ? - ? ) and had one daughter, Virginia Gates, born in 1915. They may have lived in or near Martha Furnace, Centre County, PA. Tragedy struck when their daughter Virginia was born in the summer of 1915. After the birth, an infection of eclampsia set in, meaning high blood pressure tied to weight gain. Leora was taken to Altoona Hospital. She succumbed to the illness at the age of 19 years, one month and 12 days on Oct. 27, 1915. Her remains were placed into eternal rest in the Williams Cemetery near Martha Furnace. [Find-a-Grave] Her baby daughter was taken into the home of Leora's parents, where she lived in 1920 at the age of five.

Son Raymond Critchfield (-1900-) was born in March 1900. He was born with kidney problems, and only lived for six months and 11 days. He died on Sept. 25, 1900 in or near Rockwood.

Daughter Erna (or "Ernie") Critchfield (1907-1987) was born on Sept. 22, 1907. In 1940, she resided at Rockwood, apparently unmarried, and signed her mother's Pennsylvania certificate of death. Later in life, she married Peter G. Marenna ( ? -1985). They had no children and were members of the St. Paul's United Church of Christ. Peter died in January 1985. Erna survived him by two years, and passed away in Somerset Community Hospital on June 20, 1987, at the age of 80. Burial was in the Odd Fellows Cemetery in Rockwood.

~ Son Edward M. Critchfield ~

Son Edward M. (or "S.") Critchfield (1864- ? ) was born in about 1864. Nothing more is known.

~ Daughter Joanna Critchfield ~

Daughter Joanna Critchfield (1866- ? ) was born in about 1866. Nothing more is known.

Bird's eye view of Meyersdale, early 1900s

~ Daughter Eleanora "Nora" (Critchfield) Knepper ~

Daughter Elenora "Nora" Critchfield (1871-1943) was born on March 22, 1871 in Milford Township, Somerset County. She married Charles W. Knepper (1870-1936), son of Lewis J. and Elizabeth (Walker) Knepper. Among their offspring were Blanche C. Reiman and Elizabeth M. Knepper. They were farmers for many years near Berlin, Brothersvalley Township, Somerset County, raising hay, oats, potatoes and corn. Later, upon retirement, they made their home in Berlin at 701 Main Street. Charles endured coronary artery disease for some time and died suddenly of their effects at the age of 66 on Aug. 30, 1936. Burial was in the IOOF Cemetery in Berlin, with W.A. Johnson of Berlin providing details for his death certificate. Nora was afflicted with hardening of the arteries and died on Oct. 25, 1943. Burial was in Berlin. 

Daughter Blanche C. Knepper (1897- ? ) was born in 1897 near Berlin. She wed farmer Clarence E. Raymond (also spelled "Reiman") (1892- ? ) on Nov. 24, 1915 when she was age 18 and he 23. He was the son of J.J. and Rebecca (Schrock) Raymond of Stonycreek Township.

Daughter Elizabeth M. Knepper (1900-1977) was born in 1900 in near Berlin. At the age of 19, on June 12, 1919, Elizabeth married Walter A. Johnson (1897-1981), son of John N. and Mary R. Johnson. Rev. I.B. Trout officiated. At the time of marriage, Walter worked as a clerk in Berlin. They resided for many years in Berlin and had one daughter, Geraldine Stutzman. The Somerset Daily American said that Walter was once a partner of Johnson and Son Funeral Home and Johnson and Son Ethan Allen Gallery. "He was a life long member of Holy Trinity Lutheran Church; a veteran of World War I; member of Harry Fisher Post No. 445 American Legion; 40 et 8; veterans of World War I of U.S.A. Barracks No. 3218, Somerset; Meyersdale Lodge No. 554 F and AM; Hebron Royal Arch Chapter No. 272, Meyersdale; Oriental Commandry No. 61 Knights Templar of Johnstown; Jaffa Temple Shrine, Altoona. He was a member of the 100th Anniversary Class of the Ancient Accepted Scottish Rite Valley, Harrisburg, and a 32nd Degree Mason. He had been a funeral director in Berlin since 1919, was a member of the NFDA, PFDA and Somerset County Funeral Directors Assn., where he served as secretary for 35 years. He was a member of the Berlin Sportsmenís Assn., Mountain Field and Stream Sportsmen's Club of Roxbury, charter member of Berlin Lions Club, charter member of Berlin Volunteer Fire Dept. and a member of the Hillcrest Grange. Elizabeth was active in her own right, said the Meyersdale Republic, and "was a member of the Berlin Brethren Church, Second Society of Farm Women, Trinity Chapter 138 Eastern Star, a director of the Childrens Aid society, Berlin Fire Department Ladies Auxiliary, American Legion Auxiliary Post 445 in which she held offices in all of the chairs. She was a past president of the Bi-County Council, past president of the Past Parley, past district director, department chairman for Pennsylvania for the communications, coupons, poppies and juniors. She was a member of the Twenty-Niners and a member of the Salon No. 291 or the 8-40." Their home was on Main Street in Berlin. Elizabeth died at age 76 on March 1, 1977 in Meyersdale Community Hospital. Walter passed away on Dec. 6, 1981. Burial was in the Odd Fellows Cemetery in Berlin. 

  • Granddaughter Geraldine Johnson wed Dr. Jacob W. Stutzman and in 1977-1981 lived in St. Paul, MN.

Copyright © 2014-2016

Research for this page graciously shared by the late Donna (Younkin) Logan, Clark Brocht and Linda Marker.