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Sarah (Inks) Chisnell


Sarah and Edward Chisnell

Sarah (Inks) Chisnell
was born in March 1876 near Farmington, Fayette County, PA, the daughter of Andrew J. and Minerva (Minerd) Inks.

On July 6, 1898, at Connellsville, Fayette County, Sarah married Edward George Chisnell (1879-1960). He was a native of Pittsburgh, and the son of David and Elizabeth "Bessie" (Thornton) Chisnell. She was age 22 at the time, and he was 19.

The Chisnells together produced a brood of six children -- Ruth Kime, David D. Chisnell, Howard Raymond Chisnell, Walter D. Chisnell, Elmer C. Chisnell and Ralph E. Chisnell.

Edward was a laborer, and Sarah, like her sisters, was a dressmaker. 

They moved to New Kensington, Westmoreland County, PA, where circa 1910 he was employed as an electrician in the plate glass factory. Then in 1918 he worked for Ford Motor Company in Glassmere.


New Kensington's Fourth Avenue, from Tenth Street


Howard Chisnell

The Valley Daily News of Tarentum said that "Prior to 1930 he purchased a garage in Penn Hills and moved to that area" in about 1940. They are believed to be the same family of Chisnells who escaped a fire in their two-story apartment in the winter of 1933. Said the Pittsburgh Press

The fire, starting in the kitchen of the home... was discovered by Mrs. Chisnell, who was unable to make her way downstairs because of the smoke. Mrs. Chisnell and her husband climbed through a front window on the second floor, out upon a porch roof and made their way to an adjoining roof. Their son, David Chisnell, with his wife and two children, and Ralph and Howard Chisnell then climbed out upon a back porch roof. David Chisnell obtained a ladder and led the entire family to safety. Howard, in his bare feet and clad only in underclothes and trousers, then ran three blocks in the icy streets to turn in the alarm. An engine crew on the Pennsylvania Railroad, opposite the house, also detected the fire and blew the engine whistle to attract firemen.

After graduating from high school, son Howard moved to Buffalo, NY to find work. Tragically, the following year, on April 22, 1936, while riding his motorcycle near some railroad tracks, Howard was struck and killed, either by a moving train or more likely another vehicle. A United Press article said he "died of a broken neck en route to a local hospital." He was only 19. The funeral was held in New Kensington. 

In 1945, Sarah's unmarried sister Harriet, who was residing in their home, died there.

Obituary, 1960
The Chisnells resided on Sandy Creek Road and by 1960 at 5 Veronia Road in Penn Hills. He retired from the garage in about 1956.


Stricken with leukemia, Edward suffered for six months and succumbed at the age of 80 on June 6, 1960 in their home. 

Sarah passed away at home on Oct. 16, 1961, at age 85, having been burdened with hardeling of the arteries and heart disease.

They are buried at Plum Creek Cemetery in Plum Borough, Allegheny County.


~ Son Walter D. Chisnell ~

Son Walter D. Chisnell (1899-1973) was born in about 1899.

In young adulthood, he resided in New Kensington. He is known to have joined the U.S. Army during World War I, enlisting in mid-October 1917. His name was among a number of recruits to be printed in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

On June 28, 1920, Walter entered into marriage with Gladys McColgin ( ? -1993).

Two daughters of this union were Margaret Snowdowne and Dorothy Stuart.

The family made news in September 1939 when attending a Chisnell family reunion held at the Braddock's Grave historic site near Uniontown. 

They resided at 115 Crawford Street in Homestead Park (Munhall), PA, near Pittsburgh, in 1941-1973. When the pair marked their golden wedding anniversary in 1970, the Pittsburgh Press ran a related story, saying that the "couple was honored at a reception yesterday at Homestead Park United Methodist Church."

He passed away suddenly on Nov. 9, 1973 in Sarasota, FL.

The widowed Gladys survived her spouse by two decades and remained in Munhall. She surrendered to the angel of death at the age of 91 on April 15, 1993. The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette carried an obituary which said she was survived by four grandchildren and five great-grandchildren. 

Daughter Margaret "Peg" Chisnell ( ? -2010) was born on (?). She wed William Snowdowne ( ? -1990). Their one son was Dr. Kenneth W. Snowdowne. Their home in 1970 was in West Mifflin and Munhall, PA. Margaret was employed by Equibank and belonged to the Order of Eastern Star. William was a member of the Masons and the Homestead Park United Methodist Church. Sadly, William died on Feb. 12, 1990. His obituary was published in the Pittsburgh Press. As a widow, Margaret moved to Asbury Heights, near Pittsburgh. Death swept her away at the age of 85 on Feb. 28, 2010. Rev. Rich Phipps presided over the funeral rites. Her obituary appeared in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

  • Grandson Dr. Kenneth W. Snowdowne ( ? - ? ) was born on (?). On Aug. 24, 1968, he was joined in matrimony with Linda Richter ( ? - ? ), daughter of Clarence and Fern Irene (Evans) Richter of Belle Vernon and stepdaughter of Flora Mae (Troup) Cuthbeert Richter. The  nuptials were held in the Church of the Nazarene of Belle Vernon. Among those traveling to attend the wedding was Vernon Richter of Meyersdale, PA. Circa 1970, the Snowdownes lived in Reynoldsville, PA. They relocated to California and were there in 1990. By 2010, they migrated to Arizona and settled in Surprise, AZ. Sadly, Linda was deceased between 2017 and 2022.

Daughter Dorothy Chisnell ( ? -1998) was born on (?). She served in the U.S. Navy She married William P. Stuart ( ? - ? ). Their trio of offspring included Pamela Ann Pulliam, Cynthia L.S. Rogan and William B. Stuart. Circa 1970, they made a residence in Monroeville, PA. She was a member of the Order of Eastern Star, and the family belonged to the the Monroeville United Methodist Church. She died at the age of 71 on Aug. 8, 1998. The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette printed an obituary.

  • Granddaughter Pamela Ann Stuart ( ? - ? ) was born on (?). As a young woman, she taught gifted students in the Buckhannon-Upshur Middle School in West Virginia. On March 1, 1986, she was united in wedlock with William Cassel Pulliam ( ? - ? ), son of Harry F. Pulliam Sr. of Morgantown, WV. The wedding was held in the Chapel Hill United Methodist Church in Buckhannon, WV, with Rev. Stephen Engle officiating. News of the marriage, accompanied by Pamela's wedding portrait, was announced in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. William at the time of marriage was employed as director of information for the West Virginia Farm Bureau in Buckhannon. In 1998, they made their dwelling in Charleston, WV.
  • Granddaughter Cynthia L. Stuart entered into marriage with (?) Rogan ( ? - ? ). The Rogans resided in Penn Hills in 1998.
  • Grandson William B. Stuart settled in Pittsburgh.


~ Son Elmer C. Chisnell ~

Son Elmer C. Chisnell (1900-1984) was born on March 12, 1900.

He tied the marital knot with Mary Elizabeth Potteiger (Oct. 25, 1901-1989), a native of Berks County, PA. The pair did not reproduce. 

Elmer earned a living with Bethlehem Steel Corporation. They moved to Buffalo, NY and were there circa 1960-1966.  He was a member of the Buffalo Consistory, Hamburg chapter of the Royal March Masons, while Mary Elizabeth belonged to a similar organization.

Death enveloped Elmer at the age of 83 on Feb. 19, 1984. Leading the funeral rites was Rev. Stephen Calos of the Churchill Memorial United Methodist Church of Boston, followed by interment in Hillcrest Cemetery in Armor, NY.  His obituary appeared in the Sun and Erie County Independent

Mary outlived her spouse by five years. She passed away in Nov. 1989. 


~ Son David D. Chisnell ~

Son David D. Chisnell (1901-1984) was born on Nov. 15, 1901.

He was united in the bonds of holy matrimony with Agnes "Kathryn" Farneth (1905-1974), daughter of Flora Farneth 

Two known children of this union were James E. Chisnell and Margaret "Peggy Lou" Chisnell. 

Alcoa's plant in New Kensington, PA 

They lived in New Kensington, PA in 1930, where he worked as a laborer for Ford Motor Company. Sometime during the 1930s, David accepted a position as a machinist with the Aluminum Company of America (Alcoa), and they moved to Arnold, Westmoreland County. In 1966, they made a residence in Leechburg, PA.

His final years were spent in Prince William County, VA, at the address of 1714 Varsity Drive. 

David died of a cardiac arrest at the age of 82, in Woodbridge (VA) Nursing Center, on May 29, 1984. The remains were returned to Pennsylvania for interment in Greenwood Memorial Park in Lower Burrell.

Son James E. Chisnell (1924- ? ) was born in 1924. He served in the U.S. Air Force during World War II and was deployed to the European Theatre. While stationed in England, he met his future wife Mary Egerton (Dec. 23, 1923-2008), daughter of Sam and Ellen Egerton of Norwich, Cheshire. They wed in 1945 and the following year moved to the United States. James and Mary produced one known daughter, Ellen Culverwell. The Chisnells migrated to Virginia by 1961 and dwelled in Woodbridge. Sadly, James died in 1976, with burial in Fairfax (VA) Memorial Gardens. Mary survived by more than three decades and moved to North Charleston, SC. She succumbed to the spectre of death at the age of 84 on Leap Day 2008. 

  • Granddaughter Ellen Chisnell entered into marital union with (?) Culverwell ( ? - ? ). Together, they produced five children -- Sheryl Patch, Susan Lotterer, Sandra Johnson, James Perry and Christopher Culverwell.

    Great-granddaughteerSusan Lotterer (Dave) of North Charleston, South Carolina, Sandra Johnson (Edward) of Stafford, Virginia, James Perry (Zoe) of Midland, Virginia, and Christopher Culverwell (Janelle) of Winter Haven, Florida  

    Great-granddaughter Susan Culverwell married David Lotterer. In 2008, they lived in North Charleston, SC.

    Great-granddaughter Sandra Culverwell entered into marriage with Edward Johnson. They have resided in Stafford, VA.

    Great-grandson James Perry was united in wedlock with Zoe. They have dwelled in Midland, VA.

    Great-grandson Christopher Culverwell was joined in matrimony with Janelle. Circa 2008, they were in Winter Haven, FL. 

Daughter Margaret "Peggy Lou" Chisnell (1932- ? ) was born in about 1932. 


~ Daughter Ruth Ellen (Chisnell) Kime ~

Daughter Ruth Ellen Chisnell (1905-1966) was born on Dec. 2, 1905.

Ruth was joined in wedlock with Stanley S. Kime ( ? -1982), originally from Rural Valley, Armstrong County, PA.

Together, they bore an only son, David "George" Kime. 

The Kimes, along with Ruth's brothers, took part in a Chisnell family reunion in September 1939, held at Braddock's Grave historic site near Uniontown.  

The Kimes lived in Penn Hills, near Pittsburgh, where Stanley was a longtime barber. By the mid-1960s, upon retirement, they made a residence in Stanley's hometown of Rural Valley.

Sadly, suffering from diabetes and hardening of the arteries, Ruth Ellen suffered an acute heart attack and died in Armstrong County Memorial Hospital on July 18, 1966. Her obituary was printed in the Pittsburgh Press. Burial was in Rural Valley Cemetery.

Stanley lived for another 16 years. The spectre of death whisked him away at the age of 83, in McKeesport Hospital, on March 12, 1982. The Press also published his obituary. 

Son David "George" Kime ( ? -1993) was born in (?). He entered into marriage with Mildred McFeely ( ? - ? ), daughter of LaVerne and Martha (Hardman) McFeely and stepdaughter of Francis McNeill. Together, they bore three offspring -- Martha Kovacs, Marcia Kime and David S. Kime. George made his home in East McKeesport in 1966 and in Murrysville, PA in 1982. On the tragic day of May 22, 1993, he was crushed and killed while mowing grass when, reported the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, "his tractor overturned and rolled down an embankment in Rural Valley,... authorities said." With "extensive injuries to his chest and abdomen," the 60-year-old was pronounced dead on the scene. Funeral rites were held in the Faith United Methodist Church, Delmont.

  • Granddaughter Martha Kime ( ? - ? ) was born on (?). In the fall of 1981, she wed Gene Kovacs ( ? - ? ), son of George Kovacs of Trees Mills, Westmoreland County. The wedding was held in Murrysville's Newlonsburg United Presbyterian Church, by the hand of Rev. Eric Ericson, and announced in the Pittsburgh Press. Their first home was in Export. Their daughter was Julie Kovacs.
  • Granddaughter Marcia Kime ( ? - ? )
  • Grandson David S. Kime ( ? - ? )


~ Son Ralph E. Chisnell ~

Son Ralph E. Chisnell (1908-1987) was born on Nov. 8, 1908.  

He was married to Jane Potts (Dec. 26, 1910-1995), daughter of James Potts of Arnold, PA.

They were the parents of Howard Barry Chisnell.

In mid-September 1939, the family attended a Chisnell family reunion at Braddock's Grave historic site near Uniontown. 

The Chisnells in 1940 resided in New Kensington, where he worked as an electric welder for General Electric Company. Then during the 1940s, the family pulled up stakes and moved to Grapeville, Westmoreland County, where he owned and operated his own hardware business. Circa 1966-1987, they made a habitation in Jeanette, Westmoreland County, PA.

Ralph died in Sept. 1987. 

Jane lived for another eight years and moved to nearby Greensburg. She passed away on Oct. 24, 1995. Their remains are in eternal repose in the mausoleum of Twin Valley Memorial Park in Delmont. 

Son Howard Barry Chisnell (1939- ? ) was born in about 1939 in New Kensington.


Copyright 2001-2004, 2017 , 2023 Mark A. Miner