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Annabelle (Flanigan) Burnworth


Annabelle and Ziba Burnworth. Courtesy L. George

Annabelle (Flanigan) Burnworth was born on Feb. 21, 1845 in the Johnson Chapel community in rural Confluence, Henry Clay Township, Fayette County, PA, the daughter of Job and Mary (Ream) Flanigan. As a young girl, she joined the Methodist Episcopal Church.

In about 1864, at the age of 19, Annabelle was joined in marriage with 35-year-old Ziba Libee Burnworth (July 1, 1828-1909), son of John and Hannah (Hinebaugh) Burnworth. Ziba was 16 years her senior.

He had been married previously to Susanna Lenhart ( ? -1860) and brought at least three young children to the marriage, Alverda Burnworth, Marcellus Burnworth and Orville Burnworth.

Burnworth graves, Johnson Chapel


Johnson Chapel window from
Jonathan, Eugene and Geraldine

Ziba and Annabelle resided on his farm near Johnson Chapel.

They went on to produce six more children of their own -- Chelsea Wilson, Harry Palmer Burnworth, Herbert Burnworth, Jonathan L. Burnworth, William Albert Burnworth and Norman Burnworth.

Some years earlier, in 1849, Ziba hired his brother in law Julius Kemp of Somerfield to erect a barn with lumber timbered in his woods, costing $80.00 to complete, with the barn remaining in place for some 70 years.

The Burnworths were longtime members of the Johnson Chapel Methodist Church, founded circa 1825 by Ziba's father. The congregation was part of the Somerset Circuit and then Smithfield Circuit of the Methodist church, and in 1853 a building was constructed, known then as the Fairview Methodist Episcopal Church. Ziba was a trustee of the 1853 church, along with Jacob Show, John R. Burnworth, Clark Flanigan, Christopher Burnworth, Charles Tissue and Patterson Burnworth.

When the church building was destroyed by fire late in 1883, Ziba and other trustees met at the local schoolhouse to plan for the future and raise money for new construction. At that meeting, Ziba's brother in law Thomas Flanigan was elected president of the organization, Ziba as secretary, Tissue Show treasurer, and A.B. Flanigan, C.N. Flanigan, Tissue Show, Alvin Burnworth and Grant Show as a committee to seek pledges. The new church took two years to build, and was dedicated on Nov. 15, 1885, costing $717.66 and measuring 30 ft. x 45 feet x 14 feet high.

Over the years, Ziba was highly regarded in the community, and the Meyersdale Republican once cited his "honesty, industry, perseverance and true Christian piety, ... filled with years and honors, whose pure and honest life was an inspiration for good in the community where he spent his long and useful life.."

In 1900, the federal census shows that Ziba's 84-year-old unmarried sister Keziah Burnworth lived under their roof. In October 1909, gathered for the last time, Ziba and Annabelle held a family reunion at their home. Noted the Republican, "The day was delightful and will ever be remembered by all present. A bounteouis dinner was served at 12 o'clock." Among the attendees were Mr. and Mrs. John Burnworth, Mr. and Mrs. Orville Burnworth, Mr. and Mrs. James Wilson, Thomas Butler, Isaiah Shipley, Mr. and Mrs. Harry Burnworth and sons Fred and Wade, Mr. and Mrs. William Burnworth and daughters Ruth and Lucille, Mrs. John Butler and daughter Katharine, Kissiah Burnworth, Nona Burnworth and Alverda Burnworth.

Sadly, at the age of 81, Ziba died at home of heart weakness on Nov. 5, 1909. Burial was in the sacred soil of Johnson Chapel. Among those traveling to attend the funeral was Mrs. N.B. Critchfield of Johnstown, PA.

Annabelle outlived him as a widow for another 17 years. In 1913, at the death of her sister Missouri McNair, she was named in the obituary in the Connellsville Daily Courier

In 1919 or 1921, in February, Annabelle's divorced younger brother Marcellus "Tim" Flanigan traveled from his home in Iowa for a two-month's visit. At her 75th birthday in 1920, while staying with her son William in Confluence, Annabelle was "treated with a genuine surprise on Saturday," reported the Republican.

Ziba named in this history
Mrs. W.A. Burnworth perfected the arrangements without even letting the members of her own family know, thereby showing the fallacy of the old saying that a woman cannot keep a secret. Chief of the arrangements was the baking of a magnificent birthday cake, having 75 candles on it, in remembrance of Grandma Burnworth's 75th year. In the evening J.L. Burnworth and family, who reside on the next street, Norman R. Burnworth and daughter, Bella May, and granddaughter, Agnes O'Hara, of Uniontown, who were visiting the former's brother here, Mr. and Mrs. W.H. Reiber, Mr. and Mrs. John I. Davis and Mrs. Margaret Burgess were present and spent a pleasant evening, after which they were invited to the dining-room where the table was beautifully spread with choice delicacies having the birthday cake for a center-piece. This was where Grandma Burnworth got her surprise. On Sunday she and Mr. and Mrs. W.A. Burnworth and daughters, Ruth and Louise, and Norman R. Burnworth and daughter, Bella May, and granddaughter, Agnes O'Hara were dinner guests of Mr. and Mrs. J.L. Burnworth where the latter had a magnificent birthday dinner prepared, with Grandma Burnworth as guest of honor. This venerable lady is the widow of the late Ziba Burnworth, one of the prominent residents of Henry Clay Township who died in November, 190


Despite her advanced age, Annabelle was able to travel, and in July 1922 went to Dunbar Township to see her daughter and son in law, Chelsea and James Wilson. In February 1924, she is known to have attended the 50th wedding anniversary of her husband's  kinsmen, Alvin and Emily (Bowlin) Burnworth, a dinner party held at the home of the couple's married daughter, Mrs. H.L. Hostetler.

She marked here 80th birthday in the Wilson home in Dunbar Township with a gathering that included her sons William, Jonathan and Harry and their families, all of whom traveled from Johnson Chapel to attend. A story about the happy event in the Meyersdale Republican said "Mrs. Wilson prepared a fine dinner and the day was very pleasantly spent. Mrs Burnworth, notwithstanding her advanced age, is enjoying good health. She is one of the oldest residents of the Johnson Chapel section of Henry Clay Township, where she was born and reared." Others to took part were N.R. Burnworth and his daughter and son-in-law; Mr. and Mrs. Clair George of Uniontown: Mr. and Mrs. Roy Kreps and sons Ralph, Ernest and Billy of Juniata; and Eva Wilson of Vanderbilt. 

The sands of time finally ran out for Annabelle at the age of 81 on Sept. 17, 1926, having become senile and then suffering a cerebral hemorrhage. She surrendered to the angel of death while at the home of her son Harry at Johnson Chapel. In an obituary, the Republican said she was survived by 13 grandchildren and five great-grandchildren. Rev. L.H. Powell officiated at the funeral service, with her four sons serving as pallbearers as well as nephews Wilbert McNeer and Dilworth McNeer. Later that year, her obituary was reprinted in the B. and O. Magazine, Vol. 14.

Flanigan District of Henry Clay Township, showing the Flanigan, Burnworth and McNeer farms in and around Johnson Chapel Methodist Episcopal Church ("M.E.Ch.") and cemetery ("Gr. Yd."). Atlas of Fayette County, 1872

~ Stepson Marcellus Burnworth ~

Stepson Marcellus Burnworth (1849-1927) was born on Sept. 22, 1849 on his father's farm near Johnson Chapel. 

When he reached his 16th year, Marcellus joined the Methodist Episcopal Church and was a member for the rest of his long life. 

On Dec. 9, 1875, when he was 26 years of age, Marcellus married Hester Ann "Esther" Flanigan (June 6, 1857-1950), daughter of Thomas and Catherine Elizabeth (Bowlin) Flanigan. 

The were the parents of four children -- Charles O. Burnworth, Mary Catherine Silbaugh, Thomas Z. Burnworth and Julius Franklin "Frank" Burnworth. The family also raised a foster daughter, Mrs. Colston Carter.

They made their home next to his parents at Johnson Chapel, and Marcellus was said to be "an honest and conscientious man and respected by all who knew him.... He was a sincere Christian."

On June 2, 1907, the Pittsburgh Daily Post published a four generations photo of Marcellus, his father, son Charles and grandson Preston. 

Johnson Chapel, inside and out

For his 66th birthday, in 1915, friends at Johnson Chapel threw him a surprise birthday party attended by about 50 guests. In an unfortunate accident in September 1916, Marcellus lost a valuable horse when it "fell and broke its right front leg when it wheeled against a steep hillside, as Frank Burnworth tried to halter it," said the Meyersdale Republican. "Dr. J.F. Colflesh, V.S., of Confluence, was immediately summoned, but as the bone was so badly splintered and cracked he could do nothing with it, and the horse had to be shot." 

Marcellus was featured in a July 1919 Republican story which reported that he had "made a number of fine improvements around his comfortable home. He put in an acetylene gas plant to furnish light for his home and surroundings, and also laid a number of concrete walks around his ground." In September 1920, he and his brother Harry and nephews Wade and Fred drove to Piedmont, WV, where they visited peach orchards and returned home with several bushels of peaches. 

Suffering from kidney failure, he was felled by a stroke and died at the age of 78 just two days after Christmas 1927. Burial was at Johnson Chapel, with services led by Rev. L.H. Powell, and pallbearers included his three sons, one son-in-law and grandsons George M. Burnworth and Charles Benjamin Burnworth. In a lengthy obituary, the Republican said "While he was in delicate health, owing to injuries, for several years, he had not been confined to his bed very long." He was survived by 16 grandchildren.

Hester survived as a widow for another 22-plus years. When she made occasional trips to Connellsville, Confluence, Somerset, Somerfield and other towns, it was fodder for the gossip columns of the local newspapers. She also attended many family picnics, dinners and gatherings over the decades. When her daughter-in-law Nellie became ill in late spring 1932, Hester came to help with the housework. She attended the 17th annual Show family reunion in 1939 at Sansom Chepel in Farmington and received honors as the eldest member present. In December 1943, she endured the agony of the sudden death of her son Charles from a heart attack.

She celebrated her 90th birthday in 1947 with a dinner in the home of her daughter Mary Silbaugh. At the age of 93, burdened with chronic heart disease, liver cancer and an obstruction in her intestine, she succumbed to the spectre of death at the Silbaughs' on the Fourth of July 1950. Rev. David Warsdale, of the local Methodist Church, led the funeral rites. An obituary appeared in the Somerset Daily American.

Johnson Chapel Cemetery
Stepson Charles O. Burnworth (1876-1943) was born on Oct. 15, 1876 in Johnson Chapel Henry Clay Township, Fayette County, and spent his entire life in the community. On Dec. 11, 1901, he was joined in holy matrimony with Nellie Butler (July 3, 1881-1974), daughter of George C. and Isabelle (Lancaster) Butler of Confluence. The Burnworths spent their lives as farmers. The nine children born to this couple were Charles "Benjamin" Burnworth, Frances Silbaugh, Nelle Hansler, twins Paul T. Burnworth and Carl Burnworth, Wilma Ream, Evelyn Ferrell, Nina Parker and Rev. George Burnworth. They also raised a foster daugher, Florence Shaw. Charles and Nellie produced wheat on their farm among other crops. Circa 1932, Charles presided over the governance of the Tax-Payers Association of Henry Clay Township. He served as local justice of the peace in 1932 as well as superintendent of the Sunday School of the Johnson Chapel Methodist Episcopal Church. During his final years, he suffered from what physicians called "a very serious heart condition." He suffered a massive heart attack and died at the age of 67 on Dec. 5, 1943. Interment was in Johnson Chapel Cemetery. Nellie outlived her husband by many decades. She is known to have traveled out of state in 1950 to visit her adult children in Nebraska and Colorado. At her 90th birthday, on July 3, 1971, her family gathered to celebrate, with a related story printed in the Meyersdale Republican. She succumbed to death at age 93 on Jan. 7, 1974.

  • Step-grandson Charles "Benjamin" Burnworth (1910-1977) was born on March 15, 1910 in the Johnson Chapel area. He wedded Mona Kelly (June 9, 1909-1981) of Belle Vernon, PA, the daughter of Phillip E. and Jemima A. (Lewin) Kelly. Their only known son was Edward Burnworth. Mona is known to have taught at the Marclay School for a number of years. They were members of the Johnson Chapel Methodist Church. Sadly, at the age of 67, Benjamin passed away at home on April 30, 1977. Rev. John R. Hickson officiated at the funeral service with burial in the family church cemetery. Mona was admitted to the Spear Nursing Home in Markleysburg toward the end of her life and succumbed to death there on Aug. 19, 1981. Her obituary appeared in the Meyersdale Republican.
  • Step-granddaughter Frances I. Burnworth (1912-2003) was born on Sept. 12, 1912 in Henry Clay Township, Fayette County. She entered into marriage with Frederick Silbaugh ( ? - ? ), an Ohiople native and the son of Kim and Irena (Reckner) Silbaugh. Their marriage endured the ebbs and flows of a remarkable 59 years. Together, they produced a trio of offspring -- Ray Silbaugh, Charles Silbaugh and Kay Turnbull. Frederick was a World War II veteran of the U.S. Army. He spent his working career as a farmer and as a carpenter employed by Wright Brothers of Addison. Their home in 1971 was Johnson Chapel and in the early 2000s in Confluence. They were lifelong members of the Johnson Chapel United Methodist Church, where Frances was a Sunday School teacher and active with the United Methodist Women. Frederick gave of his time at the Henry Clay Villa in Markleysburg. Sadly, at the age of 91, she was cleaved away by the angel of death in Henry Clay Villa on Dec. 16, 2003. Burial was in the church cemetery, with rites provided by Rev. Timothy Rogers. An obituary in the Somerset Daily American noted that the headcount of her survivors included six grandchildren, 10 great-grandchildren and three step-grandchildren. Frederick outlived his bride by seven years. He passed away on Dec. 6, 2010 at the age of 91. Son Ray married Diane and they have lived in Confluence -- son Charles tied the knot with Sue and moved to Sykesville, MD -- and daughter Kay wed John Turnbull and migrated to Greenwood, DE, later marrying Rick Peterman.
  • Step-granddaughter Nelle Burnworth (1914-1988) was born on Oct. 7, 1914. In about 1948, she tied the marital cord with Everett J. Hansler (June 24, 1916-1996). By 1949, they migrated to Omaha, NE and advertised that they were seeking an apartment to rent. The pair remained in Omaha for good. The known offspring of their union were Alan W. Hansler, Roxanne Royster and Edward J. Hansler. Circa 1984, Nellie is believed to have served as treasurer of the United Methodist Women of Grace United Methodist Church, and belonged to the South Omaha Women's Club. Nellie passed away on Aug. 4, 1988. Her remains were transported back to her native Somerset County to sleep for the ages in Johnson Chapel Cemetery. Everett outlived her by eight years Sadly, at the age of 80, Everett died on Aug. 17, 1996. His death notice was printed in the Omaha World-Herald. Their son Alan (Dec. 5, 1955-2002)  married Barbara Burleigh on May 27, 1977 and produced two daughters, Hannah Hansler and Rachel Hansler. Sadly, Alan died in Omaha at the age of 46, on May 19, 2002. An obituary appeared in the World-Herald. Daughter Roxanne was united in matrimony with Norman Royster and set up housekeeping in Blair, NE. By 2024, she had relocated to Holiday Island, AR. Son Edward was a 1970 graduate of Ralston High School and after obtaining an industrial arts degree in 1974 from Wayne State College became a teacher in the Millard (NE) Public Schools. Then in 1976, he was joined in wedlock with Valley Public Schools teacher Diane Fay Peterson.
  • Step-grandson Paul T. Burnworth (1920-1996) was born on Feb. 7, 1920, a twin with his brother Carl. He married Helen L. Butler (July 26, 1924- ? ). They lived in Confluence and were farmers, with Paul also employed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. Paul served in the Army during World War II with deployment in the Pacific Theater. The children born to this union were Donna Meyers and Thomas W. Burnworth. The family belonged to the Johnson Chapel United Methodist Church. Paul died at the age of 76, in Somerset Hospital, on March 22, 1996. Burial was in Johnson Chapel Cemetery, with Rev. Thomas Charles leading the service.
  • Step-grandson Carl F. Burnworth (1920-2001) was born on Feb. 7, 1920, a twin with his brother Paul. He wedded Eleanor Alden (June 4, 1923-2014), daughter of George Raymond and Sarah Keziah (Donald) Alden of Wilkinsburg near Pittsburgh. The couple's marriage endured for 56 years until cleaved apart by death. They made a residence in Farmington, Fayette County. The couple produced these offspring -- Carol Bartlett Carder, Douglas James Burnworth and Denise B. Simon. For 26 years, Carl was employed by Rockwell International in Uniontown. With an entrepreneur's spirit, he also owned and operated Burnworth Coal Company. He also had a heart for his community and, among other activities, provided hayrides for area church groups and young people, was a Melvin Jones Fellow for Humanitarians Services of the Fort Necessity Lions Club, a forest fire warden, member of Fayette County zoning board and the Fayette County Blind Association board and was a Farmington justice of the peace. The Burnworths belonged to the Farmington Bethel Church of the Brethren. For a decade, from 1971 to 1981, Eleanor was employed by the A.J. McMullen Middle School as a secretary. Said a newspaper, "She was the recording secretary for the Mountain Citizen's Action Group and Senior Times and was instrumental in compiling the Group's cookbook, 'It was Country.' She enjoyed her work as a geneaologist for the Burnworth and Alden families." Carl died as a patient in Uniontown Hospital on Feb. 23, 2001, at the age of 81. Pastors A. Harrison Smith and Larry Walker co-officiated at his funeral service, and the Somerset Daily American published an obituary. Eleanor outlived him by a baker's dozen years. The Angel of Death swept her away at age 90 on March 7, 2014. Pastor Sam McClintock led the funeral service. Their remains rest together in Johnson Chapel Cemetery. Should the family wish to share Eleanor's family history research findings, please contact the founder of this website via email.
  • Step-granddaughter Wilma Lillian Burnworth (1921-2006) was born in 1921. She was joined in matrimony with a distant double cousin, Eugene Arthur Ream (1919-2006), son of Cyril "Edgar" and Nora Pearl (Harbaugh) Ream. See the Ream biography for more.
  • Step-granddaughter Evelyn Burnworth (1926-1971) was born on Oct. 20, 1926 in Confluence. She was united in wedlock with Harold F. Ferrell ( ? - ? ). They relocated to Lima, OH and bore two children, Harold F. Ferrell Jr. and Janice Ferrell. The family belonged to the Lima United Methodist Church. Sadly, at the age of 44, Evelyn was hospitalized in Lima Memorial and died there on Aug. 11, 1971. Funeral services were held in Lima, with the remains transported to Confluence for burial in Johnson Chapel Cemetery, led by Rev. John R. Hixson. The Meyersdale Republican printed an obituary.
  • Step-granddaughter Nina Burnworth ( ? - ? ) was born in (?). As a young woman, she was employed in Uniontown with Miss Miller's Beauty Salon for five years. On Dec. 27, 1941, in nuptials held in Louisville, KY at the Warren Memorial Presbyterian Church, she married U.S. Army Pvt. James Parker Jr. ( ? - ? ), a native of the Continental No. 2 coal mining community. Reported the Meyersdale Republican, she "chose a dress of midnight blue velvet, with poudre blue accessories and a corsage of American beauty roses." She was deceased by 1971.
  • Emblem on George's grave, and the Smeltzer book
    Step-grandson Rev. George M. Burnworth (1907-1968) was born in 1907. He was united in wedlock with Janet H. (1903-1972). They were the parents of Martha J. Burnworth, Janet C. Burnworth and John Charles Burnworth. George graduated from Mount Union College of Alliance, OH in 1931. Then feeling God's call into Christian ministry, he enrolled in the Boston University School of Theology. He is known to have preached in January 1932 in the Methodist Episcopal Church of East Dedham, MA. Janet was a well known vocalist of sacred music and contracted with a Boston church to perform during the winter of 1933-1934. Returning to Pennsylvania after graduation, George became ordained as a minister in the United Methodist Church and was admitted on trial to the Pittsburgh Conference in 1934, with full membership granted in 1936. Among the churches where he was posted were Greenock-Buena Vista in McKeesport (1934-1937), Braddock Fourth Street (1937-1940) and the West Brownsville coke mission in Hutchison, Lake Lynn and Lambert (1940-1945). He was transferred to the California Conference in 1945 and served there with several churches. By 1950, they were in Colorado when George's mother came for a visit. Their final years were spent in Walsh, CO, with him pastoring a congregation in Steamboat Springs. George passed away in Walsh on Dec. 3, 1968 at the age of 61. The body was shipped back to Johnson Chapel to rest in the church burying ground, and an obituary was printed in the Uniontown, Connellsville, Somerset and Meyersdale newspapers. Janet followed him into death in 1972. George's career is outlined in Wallace Guy Smeltzer's 1969 book, Methodism in Western Pennsylvania.
  • Foster-step-granddaughter Florence Shaw lived in Richeyville, PA in 1971.

Stepdaughter Mary Catherine Burnworth (1881-1967) was born in 1881. She married Russell Silbaugh (July 4, 1881-1968), son of Mathias and Barbara (Hall) Silbaugh. The couple did not reproduce. Their home was in rural Confluence. In later years, Mary Catherine suffered from arthritis of the spine and a cataract of the right eye as well as hardening of the arteries and rheumatic heart disease. The couple went to live as residents of the Spear Nursing Home in Markleysburg. Mary passed away first, just three days before Christmas 1967, at the age of 86. Russell followed her into death four months later on April 24, 1968. Burial was in Johnson Chapel Cemetery, with the funeral service led by Rev. John Rodehaver. His survivors included a sister Hattie Bryner and brothers Kim Silbaugh and George Silbaugh. The Meyersdale Republican stated that "The community of Confluence was saddened by the loss of a sincere and loyal citizen [who] will also be sadly missed at the Johnson Chapel Church which he served and where he worshipped for many years."

Stepson Thomas Ziba Burnworth (1895-1967) was born on March 7, 1895 in Confluence. He was wedded to Melissa Show (Oct. 2, 1891-1966). She brought a son to the union, Donald Show. The Burnworths resided in Henry Clay Township and Lower Turkeyfoot Township near Confluence and produced these known offspring -- Thomas "Glenn" Burnworth, Clyde Burnworth, Leah Kamp and Irene Hostetler. In 1918, when required to register for the military draft during World War I, he was employed as a laborer with the Pennsylvania Highway Department, working on a project in nearby Wharton Township, Fayette County. He was of medium height and build, with dark brown hair and eyes. Thomas is known to have served as Henry Clay Township tax collector in 1940 and to have run for re-election over the decades. During World War II, son Glenn joined the U.S. Army Air Forces and trained in Miami Beach and flexible gunnery school in Laredo, TX. He then was deployed to the South Pacific as a sergeant in the 868th Bomb Squadron. While on a combat mission on Aug. 7, 1945, just eight days before the Japanese surrender, his B-24 bomber -- a four-engine Liberator known as the "Lady Luck 11" -- was en route home from a night mission. The airplane with its 11-man crew attacked what appeared to be a Japanese fishing fleet. But anti-aircraft fire tore into the fuselage, and the craft spun out of control over South Korea. The Lady Luck 11 crashed and exploded against the Mangwood Peak mountain near the village of Manhae. All were killed instantly. A local druggist, Hyung Duk Kim, gathered and buried the bodies and kept their identification materials. Some years later, he erected a monument measuring 11.5 feet high at the site. At the time of the crash, the family was notified but was not told for seven months that their son had finally been declared dead. At some point, the remains were dis-interred and shipped to Johnson Chapel for burial in the church cemetery. In July 1965, the Air Force's Airman Magazine printed a story about Glenn and his crewmen, written by MSgt. James A. George and A1C Chris Stauder. Melissa died on Jan. 5, 1966, at age 74, in the West Virginia University Hospital in Morgantown. Having suffered from hardening of the arteries for several years, Thomas suffered an acute heart attack at the age of 72. He was rushed to Meyersdale Community Hospital, where he passed into eternity on Oct. 7, 1967. Interment was in Johnson Chapel Cemetery, with Rev. John R. Hickson preaching the funeral sermon. An obituary appeared in the Connellsville Weekly Courier.

Stepson Julius Franklin "Frank" Burnworth (1896- ? ) was born on Oct. 24, 1896 near Confluence. He grew up on the home farm and was employed as a laborer by his father. He was tall and slender, with brown eyes and brown hair. At the age of 20, circa 1917, he was joined in wedlock with 18-year-old Anice (1898- ? ). They initially dwelled near Johnson Chapel and bore a family of children -- Freda Burnworth, Dewey Burnworth, Lula Burnworth, Ralph Burnworth, Fay Burnworth, Dale Burnworth and Wayne Burnworth. Circa 1923, after the birth of their second child, they migrated cross-country to New Mexico, where they put down roots in Roswell, Chaves County. There, federal census records for 1930 show that Frank labored as a "tinner" in a tin shop. The census of 1940 lists his occupation as tinner in a sheet metal shop. They occasionally returned to Confluence in the 1930s, '40s and early '50s to visit with relatives. They also hosted Frank's married sister and brother in law, Russell and Mary Catherine Silbaugh, for a winter-long stay in 1951-1952. At the death of Frank's mother in 1950, they remained in Roswell. Circa 1979, Anice hosted meetings of the Home Garden Club.

Foster daughter ( ? - ? ) was married to Colston Carter. Circa 1950, the Carters made their dwelling-place in Berryville, VA.  

~ Stepson Orville Burnworth ~

Graves of Orville and his wives Lottie and Edna, Johnson Chapel

Johnson Chapel Methodist
Church near Confluence, 1991

Stepson Orville Burnworth (1854-1927) was born on March 6, 1854 in or near Johnson Chapel. 

At the age of 26, in 1880, he was single and lived on the home farm, earning a living as a teacher. 

Orville was twice married. His first bride was Charlotte "Lottie" Williams ( ? -1885) of Ohio Pyle, Fayette County. 

They are believed to have produced at least two offspring, Paul Burnworth and Lottie M. Burnworth. 

Sadly, Lottie died an untimely death following childbirth at the age of 25 on April 21, 1885. Her remains were lowered into eternal repose in the cemetery at Johnson Chapel. 

Grief compounded later that year when infant daughter Lottie succumbed at the age of 10 months 8 days on Dec. 9, 1885. On her grave marker is inscribed "Our Baby." 

Circa 1898, when he was 44 years of age, Orville was joined in wedlock with his second spouse, a cousin, 25-year-old Edna Flanigan (March 26, 1873-1946), daughter of Andrew Boyle and Caroline (Butler) Flanigan of Johnson Chapel. The federal census enumeration of 1900 shows the pair together, living next to his father and stepmother.

The Burnworths dwelled for many years as farmers near Johnson Chapel, living next to Orville's parents. In February 1919, he and his brother Marcellus and kinsman Thomas Ziba Burnworth were named in a Meyersdale Republican article, which said that "Among the many good families at Johnson Chapel who have always taken a forward place in church, Sunday school, temperance and other work for the uplift of man, the Burnworth family has been in the first ranks."

On the fateful day of May 25, 1927, while riding with his wife toward home, near the residence of William Bowman, near Confluence, the 73-year-old Orville "dropped dead," said the Republican. "It was found that he died instantaneously." A physician gave the cause of death as "valvular heart disease." Burial was in the Chapel cemetery, with Rev. L.H. Powell preaching the funeral sermon. A lengthy obituary in the Republican said that he: 

...was a man of deep religious convictions, upright and honest in all his dealings, and during his long life never wronged any person but honestly and consistently lived up to the Golden Rule. His sudden death was a shock to his many friends. For a number of years Mr. and Mrs. Burnworth spent the winters in a house they owned in Confluence, and early in April of each year moved back to their farm in Henry Clay Township. but this year, owing to Mr. Burnworth's health being poor, they did not move until about two weeks before his death. After moving to their farm Mr. Burnworth's health appeared to be slightly improved, and he was able to come to Confluence about every day. 

Edna lived for another nearly two decades as a widow. At the end she made a home in the residence of a grand-niece, Mrs. Clyde M. Kern, in Scottdale.

She suffered a cerebral hemorrhage and was admitted to the Westmoreland County Home in Greensburg, PA, where she passed away on New Year's Eve 1946. Her remains were brought back to Johnson Chapel for burial. W.L. Hendricks of Greensburg was the informant for her death certificate.

Stepson Paul Burnworth ( ? - ? ) seems to be lost to history.

Johnson Chapel Cemetery
~ Stepdaughter Alverda Burnworth ~

Stepdaughter Alverda Burnworth (1856-1913) was born on Feb. 21, 1856. She was but a girl of four when her mother died, and was age eight when her father married Annabel Flanagan.

Alverda never married but spent her life in the Johnson Chapel area, staying active as a "house girl on farm." 

At the age of 13, in 1869, she joined the membership rolls of the Methodist Episcopal Church, which at the time was led by Rev. Freshwater. She "remained a consistent Christian until death," reported the Meyersdale Republican

In about 1912, she was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, and in June 1913 was admitted to Mercy Hospital in Pittsburgh, but not able to be cured, she was sent home. She succumbed to her malady on July 26, 1913 at the age of 57. 

Burial was in the chapel's burying ground, then known as "Fairview Cemetery." Reported the Republican, "The funeral took place at 2 o'clock,... Rev. C.W. Hoover, officiating. The pall-bearers were five brothers and one brother-in-law. Those who attended the funeral from a distance were: Mr. and Mrs. J.W. Wilson, Elmer [sic] Grove; Mrs. T.M. Bowmer, Cheat Haven; Mrs. Chelsea Slicer, Meyersdale; N.R. Burnworth and four children, Uniontown, and Mrs. Jas. O'Hara, Scottdale."

~ Son Norman Ross Burnworth ~

Norman and Sarah Burnworth
Courtesy L. George

Son Norman Ross Burnworth (1865-1933) was born on March 28, 1865 at Johnson Chapel, Fayette County. 

In about 1891, when he would have been 26 years of age, he was joined in the bonds of wedlock with 22-year-old Sarah Jane Frazier (Jan. 13, 1869-1947), a Pittsburgh native and the daughter of John and Nancy (McKnight) Frazier. The Burnworths resided in Uniontown in 1908-1921 at 11 Mifflin Avenue. 

They are believed to have borne these children -- Ada M.G. O'Hara, Harold Burnworth, Grace Dowler, Ross Burnworth, Nora "Gene"/"Jean" Burnworth and Bella May Burnworth. 

Grief wracked the family on Christmas Eve 1921 when 14-year-old daughter Bella May, stricken with cerebral epilepsy, succumbed to her illness. Interment of her remains was in Oak Grove Cemetery in Uniontown. 

Then at the death of their relative Mrs. George Dennis at Flatwoods, near Uniontown, Norman drove to the funeral, also attended by his brothers John and Harry and families. 

Stricken with cancer of the rectum, Norman passed away at the age of 68 on July 9, 1933 in the Richeyville Hospital in Centerville, Washington County. Said the Meyersdale Republican, "His illness had only recently became serious, and he gradually weakened until the end came." Burial of the remains was at Johnson Chapel. Daughter Ada, of Richeyville, signed the official Pennsylvania death certificate. 

Now widowed, Sarah Jane relocated to the home of her daughter Jean George in Beaver Falls, Beaver County, PA, at 3800 Second Avenue. Burdened with heart problems and diabetes, she suffered a heart attack and died at home on Aug. 31, 1947. Her remains were transported back to Fayette County for interment. The Connellsville Daily Courier carried a one-paragraph obituary.

Daughter Ada M.G. Burnworth (1891- ? ) was born on Dec. 17, 1891 in Confluence. When she was age 21, on June 17, 1913, she was united in matrimony with millhand James O'Hara (May 4, 1882- ? ) of Scottdale, Fayette County and a native of Dunbar, Fayette County. Fr. M.A. Lambing officiated at the wedding. The marriage ended sometime before 1930, and Grace took back her maiden name. The federal census enumeration of 1930 shows her living by herself in East Bethlehem Township, Washington County, and marked as "widowed." That year, she supported herself through work as a registered industrial nurse at the Dressing [?] Station. Circa 1946-1954, she worked as a night supervisor in Monongahela Memorial Hospital and received a 10-year pin for service in August 1956.

Son Harold Frazier Burnworth Sr. (1896-1978) was born on Oct. 26, 1896 in Uniontown. He was enrolled in law school in Pittsburgh circa 1916. He wedded Ella Ottenback ( ? - ? ). Their only son was Harold Frazier Burnworth Jr. The family lived in Pittsburgh, where Harold was president of the North Side Real Estate Company and chaired the Pittsburgh Housing Authority in the 1950s and early '60s. Among the authority's ambitious programs was construction 84 buildings in a low-rent public housing development in North View Heights on the North Side. Circa the early 1960s, he held a seat on the Pittsburgh Sinking Fund Commission, succeeded by banker Guy W. Lewis. Once they retired, the Burnworths returned to Confluence. They established a "self-sufficient, organize homestead ... planting a small orchard of fruit trees, several kinds of nut trees, berries, and several hives of bees," Ella said in a newspaper article. During the summer of 1977, the plantings produced 500 lbs. of chestnuts and myriad gallons of blueberries. At the age of 81, Harold died at home in Confluence on April 7, 1978. Burial was in Johnson Chapel Cemetery, with Rev. John R. Hickson officiating at the funeral service. An obituary was published in the Somerset Daily American and a death notice in the Pittsburgh Press. As a widow, Ella remained in Confluence and ran a small business selling chestnuts and honey and was profiled by columnist Gilbert Love in the Pittsburgh Press.

Norman and Sarah Burnworth with young Ada and Harold. Courtesy L. George

Daughter Grace Burnworth (1899-1977) was born in about 1899. She married H. Logan Dowler Sr. ( ? - ? ) and relocated to Richeyville, Centerville, Washington County, PA. Their children were Henrietta Barnes, Jane Dowler and H. Logan Dowler Jr. She was known to be in Richeyville in 1933 and in West Brownsville, Washington County in 1941. Eventually she migrated into Pittsburgh and made her home in the mid-1970s at 218 Pennsylvania Boulevard. In July 1977, she attended the 60th Uniontown High School class of 1917 reunion at a restaurant in Hopwood, near Uniontown. A few months later, death overtook her at age 79 on Oct. 24, 1977. A death notice appeared in the Pittsburgh Press.

Son Ross Burnworth (1901- ? ) was born on June 7, 1901. He relocated as a young man to Washington State. There, he married Martha (1909- ? ). They were the parents of Norman Burnworth and Franz Burnworth. The 1940 federal census enumeration shows that Ross earned a living as bus driver for a transportation company. He resided in Tacoma in 1978 and died in Spanaway, Pierce County, WA in May 1983.

Clair E. George Sr.
Courtesy L. George

Daughter Nora "Gene"/"Jean" Burnworth (1903-1999) was born in about 1903. She was joined in wedlock with Clair Elroy George Sr. (July 22, 1890-1947), son of Oliver R. and Jessie (Aumend) George of Delta and Toledo, OH. Clair stood 5 feet, 5 inches tall, weighed 170 lbs. and had light blue eyes and light hair. Their only known children were Clair Elroy George Jr. and Gail Marshall. Clair was a graduate of Ohio State University and at the age of 26 was employed as a state dairy inspector in Ohio. When required to register for the military draft during World War I, he disclosed that his eyes were weak and that he was deaf in one ear. The couple lived in Uniontown circa 1935 before relocating in 1939 to Beaver Falls, Beaver County, PA. There, Clair was employed as a chemist and rehabilitation agent for the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and their address was 3800 Second Avenue. His title circa 1939 was supervisor of the Farm Security Administration, working with farmers in Allegheny, Beaver and Lawrence Counties. He was in the news in the Pittsburgh Sun-Telegraph on New Year's Eve 1939 when encouraging farmers seeking rehabilitation loans to make their applications as soon as possible. Early applications for farmers became especially important when GIs returning from World War II were given special eligibility. Circa 1947, Gene's widowed mother lived in their home and died there on Aug. 31, 1947. Heartache compounded the grief when, just 15 days later, Clair Sr. suffered a massive heart attack at the age of 57 and died instantly on Sept. 15, 1947. Burial was in Beaver Falls Cemetery. The widowed Gene/Jean then went to work to support herself as a clerk in the Beaver County Courthouse. In August 1966, she is known to have attended her Uniontown High School Class's 45th reunion, held at Uniontown Country Club, and was pictured among the group in the Uniontown Morning Herald. She was still in Beaver Falls in 1978. Evidence suggests that her final years were spent in Bethesda, MD. She passed into eternity in State College, Centre County, PA on Jan. 4, 1999.

Left: bird's-eye view of Beaver Falls. Right: Beaver County (PA) Courthouse

  • Granddaughter Gail B. George (1941- ? ) was born circa 1941. She married (?) Marshall ( ? - ? ).
  • Arlington National Cemetery
    Grandson Clair Elroy George Jr. (1930-2011) was born on Aug. 3, 1930 in Pittsburgh and spent his early years in Uniontown, Fayette County. As a boy of nine, he relocated with his parents to Beaver Falls, Beaver County, PA, where he grew to manhood and graduated from Beaver Falls High School in 1948. Upon graduation in 1952 from Penn State University, during the Korean War, he served in Army Intelligence in Korea and Japan. He then joined the Central Intelligence Agency. At the age of 30, on Dec. 17, 1960, he married CIA secretary Mary Carlton Atkinson ( ? -2008), daughter of Charles Dessau Atkinson of Wilmington, DE. The nuptials were held at Christ Church in Christiana Hundred, DE. News of the wedding was published in the Philadelphia Inquirer, which said that the bride "wore a white silk taffeta gown made with a fitted bodice and full skirt. The scoop neckline bordered with Alencon lace was traced with seed pearls. A crown of leaves held her fingertip-length veil, and she carried white orchids, holly and mistletoe." Their union endured for 45 years amidst moves to dangerous places around the globe. They were the parents of two children, Leslie Miranda and Ann Davies, both of whom were born in Paris while he was away in Bamako, Mali on assignment. A native of Charlottesville, VA, Mary was a graduate of Tower Hill School and Centenary Junior College in New Jersey and liked to dance as well as play bridge and tennis. She was once described by the Washington Post as having " lived the life of a diplomat's wife during the Cold War era and who was known for her entertaining and ability to cope under difficult circumstances." The Post added that she "knew how to establish households in dangerous circumstances, which made her a valued resource to other State Department and CIA families."

    During a three-decade career, Clair rose through the ranks to eventually oversee all clandestine global espionage activities for the CIA in the mid-1980s. His work included highly risky assignments in Cold War hot spots ranging from Hong Kong and New Delhi to Beirut and Athens, where assassinations were not uncommon. The New York Times once called him "a consummate spymaster who moved the chess pieces in the CIA’s clandestine games of intrigue." In a 1992 profile, the Washington Post Magazine quoted a CIA official saying George was “a top-notch street man” who operated in what the intelligence community refers to as the “night soil circuit” -- the less desirable posts around the globe. For three years, from 1984 to 1987, he was deputy director of operations in the Reagan Administration as the third-ranking CIA official under William Casey. For his role in the infamous Iran-Contra matter -- where the profits from weapons sold to Iran were shifted to conservative Nicaraguan rebels -- he was prosecuted and found guilty of lying to congressional investigators. Two weeks after his conviction, on Christmas Eve 1992, he and former U.S. Defense Secretary Caspar Weinberger received pardons from President George H.W. Bush. Legendary Washington Post journalist Bob Woodward authored a 1987 book, Veil: The Secret Wars of CIA 1981-1987, which referred to Clair as "an old warhorse symbol of the CIA at its best and proudest." In retirement, he served on the boards of directors of Halliburton and Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus. He also volunteered for a suicide hotline. Sadly, Mary passed away at the age of 71, in Sibley Memorial Hospital, on May 31, 2008. Clair survived his wife by three years. He died in Bethesda, MD, a week after his 81st birthday, on Aug. 11, 2011. Placement of her ashes was in Arlington National Cemetery, and obituaries were printed in the Times and the Post

~ For More Reading About Clair E. George Jr. ~


"An Imperfect Spy," by Benjamin Weiser, Washington Post Magazine, May 17, 1992

Final Report of the Independent Counsel for Iran/Contra Matters, Vol. 1-2, by Lawrence E. Walsh

Legacy of Ashes: The History of the CIA, by Tim Weiner

"Shadowy Ex-Spy May Hold Key to Iran-Contra Riddle: Intelligence" - by Michael Ross, Los Angeles Times, July 15, 1991

The Central Intelligence Agency: Security Under Scrutiny - by Richard H. Immerman

Veil: The Secret Wars of CIA 1981-1987, by Bob Woodward

~ Daughter Chelsea (Burnworth) Wilson ~

Daughter Chelsea Burnworth (1869-1948) was born on the Fourth of July 1869 at Johnson Chapel. 

She bore a daughter in 1900, named Winona B. "Nona" Burnworth, but the identity of the girl's father is not known. 

In 1900, when she was age 30 and unmarried, Chelsea lived with her parents at Johnson Chapel. Then on July 17, 1907, at age 38, she married 34-year-old carpenter James W. Wilson (1873-1963), the son of Alphus Evans and Nancy Margaret (Ellis) Wilson. Rev. Thomas Charlesworth, pastor of the Methodist Episcopal Church, led the nuptials held at Johnson Chapel. 

Census records for 1910 show the couple living under the roof of James' widowed father in Dunbar, Fayette County, PA. At some point daughter Winona adopted the "Burnworth" surname. 

They relocated to Selinsgrove/Elm Grove, Snyder County, PA where they lived in 1913. Later, they returned to Dunbar, where the family belonged to the Church of Jesus Christ. 

Chelsea suffered from hardening of the arteries and hypertension and died at home on Aug. 28, 1948, at the age of 79. Following funeral services held at the home of her sister in law Eva McMillen at Little Summit, near Dunbar, her remains were lowered into repose in Laurel Hill Cemetery. 

James survived his wife by 15 years. He died in Connellsville State General Hospital at the age of 89 on Oct. 30, 1963.

Daughter Winona B. "Nona" Burnworth (1900-1979) was born on Sept. 22, 1900 in Fayette County to parents who were not married. She was united in holy wedlock with Leroy Albert "Roy" Krepps (Dec. 5, 1896-1978), a native of Vanderbilt, Fayette County and the son of Jacob C. and Margaret (Franks) Krepps. Leroy was tall and of medium build, with grey eyes and light brown hair. During World War I, Leroy was required to register for the military draft. At that time, he revealed to officials that he was employed by Wyley Coal Company of Vanderbilt and that his father was his nearest relative. Known children in this family were Ernest L. Krepps, Ralph Krepps, William Krepps, Dorothy Krepps, Esther Marlene Culver, Frances Provence and Wayne Krepps. The family dwelled in 1963 in Findlay, Hancock County, OH. Sadly, Leroy died on Feb. 25, 1978, with burial in Arlington Cemetery in Hancock. Winona only outlived him by a year and a half and was carried away by the Angel of Death on Aug. 15, 1979.

  • Grandson Ernest L. Krepps (1922-1969) was born on Nov. 28, 1922. He served in the U.S. Army during both World War II and the Korean War. He was joined in marital union in 1960 with Joyce Ellen Hinchey (1929-2009). Sadly, he passed away on Nov. 16, 1969, in Arlington, OH, after just nine years of marriage. Joyce lived for another four decades. She died in Avon, Hendricks County, IN on Aug. 24, 2009.
  • Grandson Ralph Krepps ( ? - ? )
  • Grandson William Krepps ( ? - ? )
  • Granddaughter Dorothy Elaine Krepps (1927-2006) was born on March 13, 1927 or 1928 in Herbert, Fayette County. She wed (?) Speelman ( ? - ? ). Evidence suggests that she died in Pompano Beach, FL on Nov. 25, 2006. 
  • Granddaughter Esther Marlene Krepps (1938-2015) was born on July 11, 1938 in Dunbar, Fayette County. On March 13, 1961, she wedded Ronald Dale Culver (July 17, 1937-2015), son of Clark E. and Velma E. (Hillard) Culver and a native of North Baltimore, Wood County, OH. Their three children were Bonnie Sue Culver, Lisa McRill and Timothy Culver. The family dwelled for years in Findlay, Hancock County, OH. Both husband and wife died in the same year. At the age of 76, she passed away first in Hilty Memorial Home in Pandora, Putnam County, OH on March 21, 2015. He followed her into death less than two weeks later on April 3, 2015. Their remains are at rest in Arlington Cemetery in Findlay. 
  • Granddaughter Frances Krepps ( ? - ? ) tied the knot with (?) Provence. 
  • Grandson Wayne Krepps ( ? - ? ) 

~ Son William Albert Burnworth ~

The Burnworth graves in Confluence

Son William Albert Burnworth (1872-1943) was born on Sept. 26, 1872 near Johnson Chapel on the outskirts of Confluence. He spent 46 of his 70 years in the area.

On Christmas Day 1896, he married Bertha Reiber (Dec. 10, 1874-1953), daughter of William and Louise (Deal) Burnworth.

They went on to produce three daughters -- Ruth Burnworth, Louise Beck and Edna "Lucille" Burnworth.  

The family enjoyed visiting with cousins Annabel and Ziba Burnworth at Johnson Chapel. In about 1913, their teenage daughter Lucille suffered from an abscessed ear but recovered. 

Then in the summer of 1914, the family took an extended vacation of five weeks to the west, from the plains of Iowa to the Rocky Mountains to the Pacific Coast. Reporting on the trip, the Meyersdale Republican said the family was: 

...favorably impressed with their visit and speak in glowing terms of the former residents of Somerset County whom they met, and the whole-souled hospitality with which they were entertained. The first of those whom they visited were Mr. and Mrs. Warren Ream of Defiance, Iowa. Mr. Ream, although born in this vicinity, has been in the West since he was two years old. They also visited his brother, Elmer Ream, who was born in the West but does not forget those who come from Somerset County. they were also the guests of Mr. and Mrs. Frank Loach, of Nederland, Colorado. Mrs. Loach is well and favorably known all over Henry Clay Township, her maiden name being Truey Tissue. Mr. and Mrs. Loach are in very prosperous circumstances and their hospitality is unbounded. Their ultimate destination was San Bernardino, Cal., where Mrs. Burnworth's brother, Art Reiber, lives. Mr. Reiber is well known in Somerset County, having been fo rmany years travelling salesman for J.M. Cook & Son of Meyersdale, and later for Love, Sunshine & Co. of Johnstown. he is now employed in a lucrative position with the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Railroad in the machine shops at San Bernardino and owns a fine property in that growing city, the county seat of the county of the same name, the largest county in the United States.

Sadly, in December 1914, daughter Lucille was stricken with scarlet fever and rheumatism and eventually became an invalid, confined to her room. Over the next two years, she slowly recovered and by 1917 was "now almost fully restored to health," reported the Republican. On her 15th birthday, in March 1917, her parents threw her a birthday dinner party and she received flowers from many friends. Among the attendees were teacher C.E. Koontz, Louise Augustine, June Fern Bird, Etha Younkin, and Mr. and Mrs. John I. Davis and daughter Mary Kate. Then in July 1917 she suffered a relapse, and finally succumbed on Aug. 1, 1917. 

An obituary in the Republican said she was "one of the brightest pupils of her age in the public schools until ill health compelled her to give up her studies. During all of her long illness she maintained her cheerful disposition and never complained but tried by cheerfulness and kindness to cheer and comfort her parents and sisters. She was a faithful attendant at Sunday school and joined the Lutheran Church, March 23, 1913, and also the junior choir of the same church and was a constant attendant when her health permitted. She was always courteous to old and young and her early demise is felt and mourned by all."

For three decades, William was employed as a clerk and agent by the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad, retiring in 1937. He was prominent in community activity, and was secretary of the Odd Fellows Lodge, where he was a member for 42 years, and belonged to the Maccabees Lodge. Having joined the Methodist Episcopal Church at Johnson Chapel at a young age, he later transferred his membership to, and was president and a board member of, the Confluence Methodist Church, where he belonged to the men's Bible class. Bertha was an active member of the Lutheran Church and its Ladies Bible Class and Willing Workers group. 

He died on Aug. 5, 1943, with burial in what today is the Turkeyfoot Valley Baptist Cemetery in Confluence. Pallbearers included Grant Pyle, Sam Downs, Sam Firestone, Elliot Beggs, Ray Hyatt and Scott Smith. In an obituary, the Republican reported that the honorary pallbearers were Tom Reynolds, Dr. George Hopwood, Dr. Milton Brooke, Robert Black, Homer Rush and Ralph Van Sickle.

As a widow, Bertha, resided at 521 Sterner Street in Confluence. Having outlived her husband by a decade, she was burdened with hardening of the arteries and heart valve disease. She succumbed to a heart attack and died at the age of 78 on June 5, 1953. She rests with William and their daughters in the Baptist cemetery in Confluence.

  • Granddaughter Ruth Reiber Burnworth (Dec. 10, 1898-1962) was employed as a sales lady in the A.G. Black's Sons department store in Confluence. She relocated to Cumberland, MD in September 1953 to reside with her sister and brother in law, Louise and Carl Beck. Her address was on Bedford Road in the early 1960s. As her health plummeted in early July 1962, she was admitted to Sacred Heart Hospital in Cumberland. She died there, at age 64, on Sept. 26, 1962. Her remains were transported back to Confluence for funeral services held in St. Luke's Lutheran Church, led by Rev. Vernon I. Naugle, and burial in the Confluence Baptist Church Cemetery. An obituary was printed in the Cumberland Evening Times.
  • Granddaughter Louise Burnworth ( ? - ? ) was born in (?). She wedded Carl Lewis Beck (Dec. 9, 1897-1959), son of Charles and Anna (Wolfe) Beck of Cumberland. The pair's five offspring were Charles William Beck, Henrietta L. Fagan, Ruth Ann Loy, Nancy Louise Alt and Carlene McCullough. Carl owned a hauling business and in the late 1950s was a garbage hauling contractor for the city of Cumberland despite not having the lowest bids. They made a residence on Bedford Road in Cumberland in the early 1960s and were members of St. Luke's Lutheran Church. Grief cascaded over the family on July 27, 1959 when Carl died suddenly at home at the age of 61. Rev. John F. Sammel, their pastor, led funeral services followed by burial in Hillcrest Burial Park. Louise survived him as a widow. Then on Feb. 13, 1971, Louise was joined in matrimony with Carl F. Reith ( ? - ? ), a local meat market operator. Their wedding was held at her church, presided by Rev. Vernon I. Naugle. Reported the Cumberland Evening Times, the bride "was attired in a street-length pink crepe de chene dress with matching accessories. She wore a corsage of pink camellias." Circa 1975, Louise was active with planning the progressive dinner at St. Luke's.
  • Granddaughter Edna "Lucille" Burnworth ( ?- ? )

~ Son Harry Palmer Burnworth ~

Son Harry Palmer Burnworth (1875-1931) was born three days before Christmas in 1875 on the old family farm in Henry Clay Township. 

He received higher education at California State Teachers College and Lock Haven State Normal School, and taught school locally for several years. He then went on to a better-paying career as a farmer and in the lumber business. 

In about 1901, he married Ada/Anna Butler ( ? - ? ), daughter of Thomas L. Butler. 

They produced two sons, Wade Burnworth and Fred Burnworth. 

The family lived at Humbert in 1913 and later purchased his father's farm in Johnson Chapel, about two miles from Confluence. In July 1919, Harry enlisted the help of others to raise a new barn on the farm, replacing the original one which his father had erected in 1849. Reported the Meyersdale Republican

About 50 of his neighbors and friends gathered on the farm early in the morning and under the foremanship of Joseph Welsh of Markleysburg, with Prof. John Workman and Clyde Welsh as assistant carpenters, started on the work. The new barn is erected on the site of the old log barn that he recently dismantled to make room for the new structure. The new barn is 48x72 feet, and will be modern in every particular. Mr. Burnworth runs a sawmill and carefully selected the lumber for this special object. There will be in connection with the main building, sheds with cemented floors... About 75 workers and visitors were present during the day and all were served with a bountiful dinner. 

Having suffered a nervous breakdown, Harry died at the age of 55 in April 1931. An obituary was published in the Republican

Johnson Chapel Cemetery 
Son Thomas "Wade" Burnworth (1907-1995) was born on Jan. 14, 1907 in Henry Clay Township, Fayette County. Wade was united in matrimony with Ireta Cuppett (Sept. 4, 1908-1985), daughter of Orville D. and May (Forman) Cuppett of Terra Alta, WV. They together bore a trio of children -- Scott Burnworth, Winona Palmer and Allan Burnworth. The family appears to have spent their lives in Confluence. He was a longtime teacher at Marclay Elementary School and Turkeyfoot Valley High School. Ireta also taught at Marclay and was employed at other schools in Fayette and Somerset Counties as well as in Ohio and Maryland. Circa 1935, he served on the historical committee of Johnson Chapel Methodist Church along with Robert Flanigan and Rev. F.M. Kees. Wade also held memberships in the Kingwood Grange, Confluence lodge of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, Sons of the American Revolution and the retired teachers association. Ireta for 24 years was a leader in the 4-H organization in Henry Clay/Markleysburg. The family was plunged into grief when Ireta died at the age of 77, in West Virginia University Hospital in nearby Morgantown, on Oct. 14, 1985. Per her request, her body was donated to medical science. In an obituary in the Somerset Daily American, the family requested that any memorial contributions be made to the American Cancer Society. Wade outlived her by a decade. He passed away at the age of 88, in Somerset Hospital, on Nov. 9, 1995. The Somerset Daily American printed an obituary. Rev. David Lee officiated the funeral rites in the family church.

  • Grandson Scott Burnworth relocated to Erie, PA.
  • Granddaughter Winona Burnworth wed (?) Palmer. They were in Warren, OH in the mid-1990s.
  • Grandson Allan Burnworth made his dwelling-place in 1995 in Confluence.

Son Harry "Fred" Burnworth (1908-1956) was born on Dec. 13, 1908 at Ohiopyle, Fayette County. In 1927, he was injured with he fell off a wagon with a wheel rolling over his leg and hand, but fortunately without any broken bones. He was joined in wedlock with Verna June Colborn (June 26, 1913-1999), daughter of William and Lola (Brougher) Colborn. Three children produced in this marriage were Myrna Burnworth and Dorothy Burnworth in addition to a son who died in infancy. Fred earned a living as a mechanic with Ringer Tri-State Oil Company. Their address was at 619 Oden Street, Confluence. Sadly, at the age of 47, suffering from mild hypertension and hardening of the arteries, he suffered a heart attack and was admitted to Price Hospital. Twelve days later, he died there on June 21, 1956. Interment was in the Jersey Baptist Church Cemetery. Verna lived for another 43 years and remained in Confluence. She supported herself through employment at Somerset State Hospital. She belonged to the Johnson Chapel Church, Ursina auxiliary of the American Legion, the Great Crossings Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution and the Confluence lodge of the Rebekahs. She died in the home of her granddaughter Sandra Fritz on Aug. 23, 1999 in Hookstown, Beaver County, PA. Rev. Timothy Rogers officiated the funeral rites. 

  • Granddaughter Myrna Jeanne Burnworth ( ? - ? ) was a 1956 graduate of Turkeyfoot Valley High School and attended Duff's Business College in Pittsburgh. She then accepted a position as an IBM computer keypunch operator for Koppers Company Inc. On April 4, 1959, she entered into marriage with Robert Eugene Bender ( ? - ? ), son of Carl Bender of Fort Hill. The wedding was held at the Confluence Lutheran Church, by the hand of Pastor Russell E. Kerns. In announcing the happy event, the Meyersdale Republican said that the bride "wore a dress of pink chiffon with satin trim and carried a white Bible on which was a bouquet of roses and baby breath." Robert served in the U.S. Army during the Vietnam War and in 1960 was stationed at Fort Knox. Later they put down roots in Confluence.
  • Granddaughter Dorothy Burnworth (1946-2020) was born on Nov. 30, 1946 in Confluence. She tied the marital cord with Paul H. Harter (April 3, 1945-2023), a native of Waynesburg, Greene County and the son of Harvey and Margaret (Savage) Harter. The pair planted themselves in Confluence and produced an only son, Michael Harter. Another son in this family was Jackson Warrick. Dorothy earned income as tax collector for the Turkeyfoot Valley ARea School District. She also held a membership in the Johnson Chapel United Methodist Church and the Great Crossings Chapteer of the Daughters of the American Revolution. At the age of 74, Dorothy passed away in Somerset's The Patriot facility on Dec. 9, 2020. Burial was in Jersey Baptist Church Cemetery. Paul died a little more than two years later at the age of 77 on Feb. 12, 2023 in Select Specialty Hospital in Johnstown, PA. Rev. Samuel McClintock presided over the funeral rites.

    Great-grandson Michael Harter is the father of Matthew Harter. He has been a compaion of Mary Bordwell of Stanley, NY. He died in the 2020-2023 timefrme.

    Step(?)-great-grandson Jackson Warrick dwelled in Markleysburg, PA in 2023. 

~ Son Jonathan L. "John" Burnworth ~

Son Jonathan L. "John" Burnworth (1886- ? ) was born on May 1886. 

Jonathan's grave, Johnson Chapel
Courtesy Janet (Gary) Orawiec
Son Jonathan L. "John" Burnworth (1886- ? ) was born in May 1886. 

He was thrice married. His first spouse was Florence Butler (Oct. 3, 1879-1909), daughter of Thomas L. and Letitia (Boyd) Butler. He was seven years younger than his bride, and the couple appears not to have reproduced. 

In early November 1909, at the age of 30, Florence was diagnosed with a brain tumor, and died just four days later on Nov. 8, 1909. Her remains were lowered into repose in Johnson Chapel Cemetery. 

The 22-year-old Jonathan then spent the next few years living under his mother's roof in Johnson Chapel. 

Later, he married a cousin, Florence A. "Flora" Gerhard (1889-1925), daughter of Francis S. and Bertha Ann (Ream) Gerhard of the family of Thomas and Adaline (Shaulis) Ream Jr. They resided in Humbert in 1913 and in Confluence in the 1920s and '40s, where he was employed as a laborer by the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad. 

The couple produced three children -- Eugene Francis "Bernie" Burnworth, James "Kenneth" Burnworth and Geraldine Burnworth.

Flora's grave, Johnson Chapel
Courtesy Janet (Gary) Orawiec
Flora suffered from anemia over the years. When she was stricken with a hemorrhage of her uterus at the age of 36, there was nothing that could be done, and she died the same day on June 17, 1925. Burial was at Johnson Chapel. Her brother Russell traveled from his home in Ellwood City, PA to attend the funeral. 

John spent about two years as a widow and then in about 1927 wed a third time to Kathryn Elizabeth Breakiron (April 20, 1892-1973) of Independence, Preston County, WV. They remained together for more than four decades. 

The federal census enumeration of 1930 shows John, Kathryn and family in Confluence, with him continuing to earn a living as a railroad clerk at the B&O station. During the mid-1930s, he was transferred to the B&O freight station in Connellsville, as a tallyman, and they moved there by 1940.  

At some point the couple divorced, and Kathryn moved to St. Petersburg, Pinellas County, FL. There, she died on Dec. 1, 1973.  

Jonathan and their daughter shared rooms in the Acme Apartments along Confluence's Latrobe Avenue circa 1965-1968. 

In his final years he was afflicted with arthritis as well as coronary heart disease and hardening of the arteries. He was felled by a heart attack and within a minute was dead in Confluence on Dec. 12, 1968. Daughter Geraldine, who was the informant for his official Pennsylvania certificate of death, marked that he was both widowed and divorced, and listed his wife's name as "Flora Gerhart Burnworth."

Elyria, OH, where Eugene and Cleo Burnworth moved circa 1941 

Son Eugene Francis "Bernie" Burnworth (1914-1983) was born in 1913. He was employed by Baltimore Life Insurance in young manhood. On May 22, 1937, in nuptials held at the Confluence Methodist Church, he exchanged marital vows with Cleo E. Heinbaugh (1912- ? ), daughter of J.W. Heinbaugh of Casselman. Rev. F.M. Kees presided, with the happy event announced on the pages of the Connellsville Daily Courier. Two sons borne of this union were Howard Burnworth and John C. Burnworth. In July 1941, on the eve of America's plunge into World War II, Eugene secured employment in Elyria, OH, and the family relocated there for good. He is known to have held the occupation of sales managere. They regularly returned home to visit Eugene's father and in the summers to attend the Johnson Chapel picnic. By 1950, the couple divorced, with Cleo remaining in Elyria as shown in the federal census enumeration. Eugene also stayed in Elyria and on May 31, 1950, at the age of 36, married again to 29-year-old Betty J. Welsh (Oct. 17, 1920-2015), originally from East McKeesport, PA and the daughter of Benjamin Franklin and Nell (Mackey) Welsh. They bore a daughter, Sharon L. Pickens. Betty was employed as an assembler for 36 years with Bendix Westinghouse. She held a term as president of a local women's group and was active with Community United Methodist Church. In 1973, they are known to have traveled back to Confluence to help the town celebrate its centennial. Sadly, Eugene died in 1983. Burial was in Elyria's Brookdale Cemetery. Betty outlived him by 32 years. At the age of 94, she passed away at home on Sept. 1, 2015. 

  • Grandson Howard Burnworth (1939-1997) was born on Oct. 12, 1939 in Pennsylvania. His youth was spent in Elyria, OH. He died in Elyria on May 15, 1997. The remains were lowered into eteernal repose in the local Brookdale Cemetery.
  • Grandson John Charles Burnworth (1941- ? ) was born in about 1941 in Pennsylvania. He grew up in Elyria and is believed to have served in the U.S. Navy. John entered into marriage with Sandra L. Hyer (Sept. 16, 1941-2011) of Elyria, the daughter of Edward and Evelyn Hyer. Their union held fast over the ebbs and flows of 49 years together. The pair became the parents of four daughters -- Deborah Willham, Barbara Kushen, Dianne Skinner and Jennifer Mize. Sandra was a 1959 alumna of Elyria Catholic High School and then in 1962 graduated from the M.B. Johnson School of Nursing. Sadly, Sandra died at EMH Healthcare at the age of 70 on Oct. 30, 2011. Interment was at Brookdale Cemetery. In an obituary, the family asked that any memorial gifts be made to the American Diabetes Association. The widowed John resided in Elyria in 2015 at the death of his stepmother.

    Great-granddaughter Deborah Burnworth married (?) Willham. 

    Great-granddaughter Barbara Burnworth wed (?) Kushen. Evidence hints that she may be employed as manager of patient financial services in facility billing for Akron Children's Hospital.

    Great-granddaughter Dianne Burnworth was joined in wedlock with (?) Skinner. She has earned a living as customer service specialist with AAA. 

    Great-granddaughter Jennifer Burnworth is a 1991 graduate of Elyria High School. On July 20, 1996, she was united in matrimony with (?) Mize. They are the parents of Justin Mize and Daniel Mize. She is believed to work as a family nurse practitioner, affiliated with Mercy Regional Medical Center in Elyria. 

  • Granddaughter Sharon L. Burnworth (1955- ? ) was born in 1955. As a young woman, she moved to Toledo, OH and was employed as a bank teller. At the age of 25, on Sept. 6, 1980, she married 24-year-old Jeffery Pickens (1956- ? ), son of Henry V. and Anna (Rogaczewicz) Pickens. Pastor John F. Buza of Elyria presided over the nuptials. Jeffery also lived in Toledo and at the time of marriage was a project engineer. The couple settled in Elyria and dwelled there in 2014. Today she makes her dwelling-place in Berea, OH.
Ellwood City, home of James K. and Louise Burnworth Sr. 

Son James "Kenneth" Burnworth Sr. (1914-1982) was born on Dec. 7, 1914 in Henry Clay Township. As of 1940, at the age of 25, he resided with his father and stepmother in Connellsville. He entered into the rite of matrimony with Louise Jean Baker (1915-2001), a native of Beaver Falls, PA and the daughter of George P. Baker. Two children they bore together were James Kenneth "Hoopy" Burnworth Jr. and Judith Ann Burnworth. By 1956, he relocated to Ellwood City in Beaver/Lawrence County, PA. As of 1973, their address was 405 Wayne Avenue. Kenneth passed away at the age of 67 in Ellwood City Hospital on Nov. 12, 1982. The remains were lowered under the sod of Slippery Rock Presbyterian Church Cemetery in Ellwood City. Louise endured for another 19 years as a widow. Death claimed her at the age of 85, in Lawrence County, on Jan. 24, 2001.

  • Grandson James Kenneth "Hoopy" Burnworth Jr. (1950-2011) was born on Dec. 6, 1950 in Ellwood City. He was a 1968 graduate of Lincoln High School and then attended Youngstown State University. In 1969, he joined the U.S. Army during the Vietnam War and served for two years with the 101st Airborne Division headquartered at Fort Campbell, KY. During a 13-month deployment to combat in Vietnam, he was exposed to the Agent Orange herbicide and was afflicted with side effects which eventually led to his death. Then in 1972, back in Ellwood City, he earned a living as a millworker for George K. Garrett Company. He also worked in1973 at the Ellwood City plant of the Gary-Ellwood Works of United States Steel Corporation. Said the Ellwood City Ledger, "He was a lifelong avid fan of the Pittsburgh Steelers. He loved playing softball." He twice was joined in wedlock in his lifetime. His first spouse was Ann Reid Gillespie ( ? - ? ), daughter of William and Marjorie Gillespie. They tied the knot on Feb. 24, 1973, with the ceremony conducted at Bell Memorial United Presbyterian Church by the hand of Rev. Douglas Pomeroy Ann's bridal portrait published in the Ledger, which said she "selected a gown of white velvet fashioned with a high stand-up collar, long sleeves and slipper-length skirt. The bodice, collar and cuffs were adorned with pearls and Venice lace. Matching lace also encircled the waistline and formed the attached chapel-length train." Ann was a 1971 graduate of Lincoln High and employed at the time with Ellwood City Federal Savings and Loan Association. They went on to bear two daughters, Jaime Meyer and Renee Burnworth. As of 1980, the family address was 315 Morrison Avenue in Wurtemburg Heights. Ann appears to have been active in local bowling leagues. By 1983, the pair had separated, with Ann remaining at 315 Morrison and Kenneth at 405 Wayne Avenue. Later, he entered into marital union with Lauranne Ferrara ( ? - ? ), daughter of Joseph and Elizabeth L. "Bette" (DeGenova) Ferrara. Their pair of sons were Steven Burnworth and Jameson Burnworth, . The couple's marriage dissolved in divorce, but they remained on good terms including after she remarried to Kim Smolka. The Smolkas relocated to Las Vegas, and were the caregivers for James until he died in their home at the age of 60 on Nov. 28, 2011. His obituary appeared in the Ledger, with burial taking place in Slippery Rock Cemetery. 

    Great-granddaughter Jaime Marie Burnworth (1976- ? ) was born in 1976. She attended Perry Elementary School. Jaime wed John Meyer. The pair were in Ellwood City in 2011 and are the parents of Morgan Meyer and Kenneth Meyer. 

    Great-granddaughter Renee Michelle Burnworth (1979- ? ) was born in 1979. She weighed 7 lbs., 11 oz., with the happy news announced in the Ellwood City Ledger. Renee has made her home in Ellwood City. 

    Great-grandson Steven Burnworth ( ? - ? ) grew up in Ellwood City and is believed to have published numerous photographs over the years in the Ellwood City Ledger. Eventually he relocated to Las Vegas.

    Great-grandson Jameson Burnworth (1987- ? ) was born in 1987 in Ellwood City Hospital. The Ellwood City Ledger announced his birth, saying he weighed 7 lbs., 15 oz. He is known to have dwelled in Las Vegas in 2011.

  • Granddaughter Judith Ann Burnworth ( ? - ? ) was united in wedlock with (?) Hamblin. She made her home in 2011 in Lexington, KY. One known daughter of this union is Stephanie Anne Brown.

    Great-granddaughter Stephanie Anne Hamblin ( ? - ? ) married Bryant Brown. Their dwelling-place in 2011 was in Palham, AL. The couple's two sons are Allen James Brown and Christopher William Brown. 

Daughter Geraldine "Gerry" Burnworth (1924-1993) was born on Oct. 26, 1924 in Confluence. She did not marry. Geraldine was a longtime member of the Johnson Chapel Methodist Church and the Confluence Area United Methodist Women. As of 1971, she lived in the Humbert Apartments in Confluence, and spent her winters with her stepmother in Florida. The angel of death cleaved her away at the age of 69 on Nov. 25, 1993. Her remains sleep for the ages in the sacred soil of Johnson Chapel Cemetery.

Copyright 2014-2017, 2020, 2024 Mark A. Miner

Beaver County Courthouse photo courtesy Beaver Area Heritage Foundation