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Claude Thomas


Claude Thomas ("Cloddie" or "Tod" or "C.T.") Minerd (1890-1966) was born on June 12, 1890 in Amesville, Athens County, OH, the son of Jacob and Martha "Bessie" (Buck) Minerd Jr. He was of medium height and build, and had blue eyes and dark brown hair. As a boy, the highest grade he completed was eighth grade.

Circa 1918, he resided at Guysville and was employed as a farmer by Mrs. Amy Cornell. He was a veteran of World War I, having served as a corporal in the 308 Motor Battallion. On his military draft registration card, he noted that his race was "African" and that his right foot was disabled, "caused by broken ankle." 

Todd married Ethel (Frey) Grubb (1896-1983), the daughter of Lee and Maud (Perrin) Frey of Guysville. He was age 27, and she 21, at the time. Rev. W.H. Arthur performed the nuptials in Chauncey, Athens County, on Oct. 15, 1917. Ethel had been married once before, to Leonard Grubb, and they were divorced.

They were members of the Stewart Wesleyan Church.


Fountain Square in Springfield, Ohio, early 1900s


The Minerds resided for many years in Guysville, Athens County but are known to have been in Springfield, Clark County in 1920-1922, when two of their daughters were born there.

They had 12 children -- Claude Watson Minerd, Bessie Beatrice Brown, Margaret J. Mankin Rittinger, Roberta Dailey, Mina Mae Boyer, Hazel "Cre" Yeater, Olive "Okema" Dunfee, Beverly Humphrey Thompson, Eudora Area Barnhart VanKeuren, Robert Thomas "Bob" Minerd, Harvey William "Bill" Minerd and Roy M. Minerd. At least five of the daughters were married at the age of 16, and one at 17.

In December 1927, Ethel and several of her children attended a birthday party for M. Coon in Guysville, and the news was published in the Sunday Messenger newspaper. When the federal census was enumerated in 1930, the family made their home in Rome Township, Athens County, with Todd employed as a truck driver for "public roads." That year, the census-taker marked the Minerd's race as "black."

In mid-May 1932, the Athens Messenger reported that "Tod Minerd and family have moved to the property of E.W. Cunningham at the corner of Main and Mill Streets" in Guysville.

When again counted in the 1940 census, the Minerds lived in a rented dwelling in Stewart, Rome Township, and Todd's occupation was as a road laborer with the Works Progress Administration (WPA).

Todd passed away on March 14, 1966. He was age 75.

Ethel died on Feb. 12, 1983, having outlived her husband by 17 years. She was laid to rest in the Stewart Cemetery. Her obituary in the Athens newspaper said she was survived by 30 grandchildren and 26 great-grandchildren. 


~ Daughter Bessie Beatrice (Minerd) Brown ~

Daughter Bessie Beatrice Minerd (1914-1967) was born on Nov. 14, 1914 in Rome Township and grew up in her parents' home in Guysville.

At the age of 16, on April 26, 1931, she was joined in matrimony with 19-year-old Robert L. Brown (1911-1976). He was the son of Leslie H. and Florence (Founds) Brown of Athens County. Rev. B.H. Pugh officiated at the ceremony held in Athens. At the time of their marriage, Robert was a farmer and lived in the rural outskirts of Athens, Athens County.

They resided in Guysville and had three children -- James "Jim" Brown, Eldon Brown and Donna Tanthorey. 

Said the Daily Sentinel newspaper, Robert "attended the Pilgrim Holiness Church at Stewart and was a 33-year retired employee of the B&O Railroad. A resident of Guysville for the past 45 years, he retired from the food service department at Ohio University on Nov. 8 [1976]." 

Bessie passed away in or near Parkersburg, Wood County, WV on Oct. 5, 1967. 

Robert survived Bessie by nine years. He died on Nov. 14, 1976, at the age of 65.

Son James "Jim" Brown (1931-2018) was born on Aug. 31, 1931 in Guysville. He served in the U.S. Army during the Korean War. Circa 1976, he lived in Cannonville, OH. At the age of 60, in about 1991, he was joined in matrimony with Judy (Delay) Drake ( ? -living) and they remained together for 27 years until the separation of death. Five step-children were involved with this family -- Rick Drake, Bob Drake, Rod Drake, Ron Drake and Debbie Eberts. Sadly, at the age of 86, James was admitted to Riverside Methodist Hospital in Columbus, Franklin County, OH. There, he succumbed on March 16, 2018. Funeral services were led by Rev. Craig Holler, with interment in Stewart Cemetery. An obituary in the Athens (OH) Messenger noted that his survivors included "many grandchildren and great-grandchildren."

  • Step-grandson Rick Drake was deceased by 2018.
  • Step-grandson Bob Drake married Mona.
  • Step-grandson Rod Drake wedded Marcia.
  • Step-grandson Ron Drake was joined in marriage with Patricia.
  • Step-granddaughter Debbie was united in wedlock with Robert "Bob" Eberts.

Son Eldon Brown married Karen. He made his home circa 1976 in New England, OH.

Daughter Donna Brown married Thad Tanthorey. They resided in Coolville, Athens County. Later, circa 2018, she was a companion of Don Meeks.

Familiar landmark in Coolville, early 1900s -- a dam and covered bridge


~ Son Claude "Watson" Minerd ~


Son Claude "Watson" Minerd (1918-2000) was born in 1918. He apparently was not living at home at the age of 12 when the family was enumerated by the federal census taker.


At the age of 18, in 1936, Claude wed Eulah Louise Christy (1917- ? ) in Pleasants, WV. They divorced in Athens County in May 1946, after a decade of marriage.

They produced one known daughter -- Rita Rae West.

Federal census records for 1940 show the family residing in Rome Township, Athens County, with Claude employed as a road laborer with the Works Progress Administration (WPA), a job which his father also held at that time. In 1940, Claude's brother William lived under their roof.

Claude married his second wife, Mabel "Doll" (Jenne) Carnahan (1926-2012), on Oct. 22, 1949, in Washington County, OH. She was the daughter of Charles Everett and Ruth Myrta (Miller) Jenne of Little Hocking, Washington County. He was age 31 and she 23 at the time.

The couple went on to have these children and step-children -- Mark Minerd, Marion "Bud" Carnahan, Kimberly Johnson and Steve Jenne. 

Claude served as a sergeant in the U.S. Army during World War II. "He retired from Union Carbide following 30 years of service," said a newspaper, and resided in Guysville, Athens County. Mabel was employed for 29 years by the Parkersburg News and Sentinel. They lived in Little Hocking and attended the Little Hocking United Methodist Church.

He passed away on Aug. 23, 2000, at the age of 82, and is buried in Rockland Cemetery in Belpre. At his death, he was survived by 11 grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren.

Mabel survived her husband by a dozen years. Her final time was spent at The Arbors in Marietta, OH. She died there at the age of 86 on May 7, 2012.

Daughter Rita Rae Minerd (1940- ? ) was born in about January 1940. She wed Gary Lee West, son of Charles G. and Marjorie (Burton) West, on Nov. 16, 1957, in Franklin County, IN.

Son Mark Minerd wed Kathy and lived in Cutler, OH.


~ Daughter Margaret J. (Minerd) Mankin Rittinger ~

Daughter Margaret J. Minerd (1920-1992) was born in 1920 in Springfield, Clark County, OH. 

She married twice, first to Oather Lee Mankin (May 8, 1917-1949). He was the son of William and Emma (McCarty) Mankin and a native of Greenup County, KY.

Their children were Ronald Mankin and Veleeda Barnes. Their address in the late 1940s was 638 Glencroft Avenue in Chillicothe. He was employed as a custodian at the local Eagles Club.

Sadness enveloped the family when Oather was fatally injured a vehicular accident in the wee hours of the morning. He was riding with his brother in law James E. Dailey of Guysville, and the automobile smashed into the concrete base of a traffic signal light at the N&W Railroad grace crossing in Chillicothe. He was rushed to Chillicothe Hospital where died on March 19, 1949, just a few weeks shy of his 32nd birthday. Dailey was seriously injured and sent to Sheltering Arms Hospital in Athens. A photograph of the wrecked vehicle was front-page news in the Chillicothe Gazette. His remains were lowered into eternal repose in Greenlawn Cemetery in Chillicothe, following a funeral sermon officiated by Rev. Irwin Phillips. 

The brother in law later was indicted on a charge of second degree manslaughter, and the grieving Margaret brought legal claims against the N&W Railroad and the city, and the case ended up in federal court. Circa 1960, she lived in Vigo, OH.

On April 20, 1962, at the age of 42, she married again, to 45-year-old Leonard R. Rittinger (1917-1991). The Rittingers made their home in Chillicothe. They were the parents of Deanne Maughmer Caldwell and Ronald Rittinger.

Leonard passed away on Aug. 26, 1991. 

Margaret followed him to the grave less than a year later, and died in Chillicothe at the age of 72 on May 7, 1992.

Son Ronald Mankin (1937-1980) was born on Oct. 24, 1937 in Athens County. He was employed in 1960 with Buckeye Mill and Cabinet Company. On Jan. 16, 1960, he was joined in matrimony with Eunice (Bland) Rinehart ( ? - ? ), daughter of Joseph Bland of Waverly. The nuptials were performed by Rev. Ray Duncan at the home of Eunice's sister Mrs. George Cutler in Waverly, OH. Their offspring were Kathy Stansberry, Jodi Mankin, Melissa Buckner, Gary Mankin Mills, Derrick Mankin and a son who died young. Later, on June 22, 1978, he wedded Loretta Bandy ( ? - ? ). The couple dwelled in the Omega community of Chillicothe. Suffering from an illness of four-month's duration, Ronald passed away at the age of 42 on May 17, 1980 as a patient in University Hospital in Columbus. Rev. Marion Conkel led the funeral service, with burial in Omega Cemetery. An obituary was published in the Chillicothe Gazette.

  • Granddaughter Kathy Mankin married (?) Stansberry. They lived in Waverly, OH.
  • Granddaughter Jodi Mankin made her home in Chillicothe.
  • Granddaughter Melissa Mankin wedded (?) Buckner. She was under her father's roof in 1980.
  • Grandson Gary Mankin used the surname "Mills" in 1980. He lived in Chillicothe.
  • Grandson Derrick Mankin resided at home in 1980.

Daughter Veleeda J. Mankin (1943-2005) was born on Oct. 3, 1943 in Painesville, OH. She was united in wedlock with (?) Barnes ( ? - ? ). Their home was in Chillicothe. Their children were Michele Graybell, Teresa Barnes and David Eugene Barnes. She also had these stepchildren -- Cynthia McClure and David Michael McClure. Veleeda, a licensed cosmetologist, supported herself with employment in the Adena Regional Medical Center as a dietary supervisor. On Nov. 3, 2005, at the age of 62, Veleeda succumbed in Mt. Carmel Medical Center in Columbus. Interment was in Mt. Carmel Cemetery, with Rev. Lou Watson preaching the funeral sermon. The Chillicothe Gazette printed an obituary.

  • Granddaughter Michele Barnes married (?) Graybell. She made her home with David Evans in Londonderry, OH in 2005.
  • Granddaughter Teresa Barnes dwelled in Chillicothe.
  • Grandson David Eugene Barnes wedded Diana. In 2005 they lived in Chillicothe.
  • Step-granddaughter Cynthia McClure resided in Chillicothe in 2005.
  • Step-grandson David Michael McClure has lived in Chillicothe.

Daughter Deanna (?) married (?) Maughmer and dwelled in North Carolina in 1980. By 2005, she had married again to (?) Caldwell and was in Gastonia, SC.

Son Ronald Rittinger was joined in wedlock with Marilyn. They made their home in 1980-2005 in Chillicothe.


~ Daughter Roberta "Bertha" (Minerd) Dailey ~

Daughter Roberta "Bertha" Minerd (1922-2010) was born on Dec. 1, 1922, in Springfield, Clark County, OH. 

She married Howard Dailey (1917- ? ) on Jan. 14, 1939, a ceremony held in Meigs County, OH. Roberta was age 17, and Howard 22, at the time of their nuptials. Rev. Ralph Kuether officiated. She fibbed on her marriage license application, stating her age as 21 rather than 16, possibly to avoid having to obtain her parents' consent as she legally was underage. 

Howard was the son of Hollie and Fernie (Bails) Dailey of Athens. The year they were married, she resided in Pomeroy, Meigs County as a housekeeper and he lived in Stewart, Athens County and earned income as a laborer.

They made their residence in Guysville and had one daughter, Saundra Martin. 

Bertha was a longtime cook for Ohio University in Athens. 

She passed away at the age of 87 on Sept. 11, 2010, at O'Bleness Memorial Hospital in Athens, with burial in Stewart Cemetery. An obituary appeared in the Athens Messenger.

Daughter Saundra Dailey married Robert Martin. 


~ Son Robert Thomas Minerd ~


Bob Minerd

Son Robert Thomas "Bob" Minerd (1925-2007) was born in 1925. 

He was married twice. With his first wife, he had two children -- Marlaine Herbert and Mark G. Minerd. 

Later, at the age of 34, he married Barbara Louise Books ( ? - ? ) on Sept. 5, 1959, at Little Hocking. They had one daughter. 

After serving in the U.S. Navy during World War II, on the USS Houston in the Asian-Pacific Theatre, Bob returned home to Guysville. He "went to work in the logging business with a team of horses," said the North Platte (NE) Telegraph. "He later moved to Ashtabula, Ohio, and started trucking over the road. He went to work for Consolidated Freight in 1965, and retired from there in 1985." In 1971, they moved to Nebraska, settling in the community of Hershey. There, Bob was a member of the local Shrine, Elks and American Legion. 

Bob passed away at the age of 81 on Jan. 7, 2007, at Great Plains Regional Medical Center in North Platte, NE. He was laid to rest at Fort McPherson National Cemetery.


~ Son Harvey William "Bill" Minerd ~

Son Harvey William "Bill" Minerd (1926- ? ) was born in about 1926. 

When he was age 13, in 1940, he lived in the home of his married older brother and wife, Claude W. and Louise Minerd in Rome Township, Athens County.

During the waning days of World War II, he served in the U.S. Armed Forces, joining in April 1945.

He married Mary Troillet ( ? - ? ), daughter of Tony and Clara (Worm) Troillet. They lived in Guysville.


~ Son Roy M. Minerd ~

Son Roy M. Minerd (1928-2012) was born in about 1928 in Athens County. 

He resided in Athens. 

Roy died in Riverside Methodist Hospital in Columbus, Franklin County, OH at the age of 83 on March 3, 2012. His remains were returned to Stewart for interment in Stewart Cemetery. A short obituary was published in the Parkersburg News and Sentinel.


~ Daughter Mina Mae (Minerd) Boyer ~

Daughter Mina Mae Minerd (1929-2001) was born on July 23, 1929 in Guysville, Athens County. In her teen years she lived in Coolville.

At the age of 16, on Feb. 6, 1946, she married 40-year-old Jennings Thomas Boyer (1906- ? ). He was the son of William Andrew and Angeline (Miller) Boyer and was a native of Seaman, WV. Justice of the peace J.W. Bailey solemnized the nuptials in Athens. Wife and husband were almost a quarter century apart in age. 

At the time the couple was married, Jennings made a living as a "common laborer" and lived in Stewart, Athens County.

The couple went on to reside in Columbus and had two foster daughters, Linda and Nita. 

Jennings' fate is unknown.

Mina died at the age of 72 on Sept. 2, 2001, at Mount Carmel Hospital in Columbus.


~ Daughter Hazel "Cre" (Minerd) Yeater ~

Daughter Hazel "Cre" Minerd (1931- ? ) was born on March 14, 1931. 

On March 19, 1947, when she was age 16, Cre married 21-year-old Ted Yeater (1926-2010). Rev. Robert L. Hagenaner officiated in the ceremony held in Pomeroy, OH. Their marital union lasted for 63 years until separated by death.

Ted was the son of Brant and Stella Belle (Becker) Yeater of Coolville. He was a railroad laborer and lived in Frost, OH at the time of marriage.

The Yeaters made their home in Stewart, OH. Their children were Michael Yeater, Eva Mae Doak and Carol Carpenter.

Teddy served in the U.S. Army during the Korean War. He was a member of the Laborers Union No. 83 and the Athens American Legion. 

Teddy passed away on Dec. 10, 2010, at the age of 84. He was laid to rest in a military funeral at Stewart Cemetery, led by Okey Ahart. The Athens Messenger said that he was survived by five grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.

Son Michael Yeater married Judy.

Daughter Eva Mae Yeater wed Donald Doak.

Daughter Carol Yeater was united in married with Paul Carpenter.


~ Daughter Olive Okema (Minerd) Dunfee ~

Daughter Olive "Okema" Minerd (1934-2017) was born in about 1934. 

She married Paul R. Dunfee (April 11, 1928-2007), son of Silas B. Dunfee and Mabel Bean Misner of Guysville.

They were the parents of Sherry Dunfee, Benton Thomas Dunfee and David Dunfee.

The Dunfees lived in Guysville, Athens County. Okema attended the Stewart Wesleyan Church in nearby Stewart. The Athens (OH) Messenger noted that she "spent her life taking care of her family and loved ones."

Paul was admitted to Hickory Creek Nursing Center where he succumbed at the age of 78 on Jan. 20, 2007. An obituary was published in the Messenger.

Okema lived for another decade as a widow. She passed away at home at the age of 83 on Jan. 25, 2017. Denny Bolin preached the funeral sermon, with burial in Wyers Cemetery in or around Coolville.

Daughter Sherry Dunfee wedded Richard Byrd. In 2007, they lived in Columbus, Franklin County, OH and in 2011 she resided in Guysville.

Son Benton Thomas Dunfee (1950-2011) was born in about 1951. He married Rebecca "Becky" (?). Their children were Rodney Dunfee and Rhonda Knopp. They dwelled in Maryville, TN in 2007, where he belonged to the Masons. Benton died at the age of 60, on Nov. 1, 2011, at the Fort Sanders Regional Medical Center in nearby Knoxville, TN. Rev. Roger McCoy officiated at  memorial services held at the Stewart Wesleyan Church. In an obituary in the Athens (OH) Messenger, the family asked that any memorial donations be made to the American Cancer Society.

  • Grandson Rodney Dunfee was wedded to Misty (?). Their home in 2011 was The Plains near Athens.
  • Granddaughter Rhonda Dunfee married (?) Knopp. In 2011, she dwelled in Guysville.

Son David R. Dunfee (1955-2014) was born on June 27, 1955 in Athens. He and Bonnie Kessel produced a daughter, Michele Dunfee. Later, he was joined in matrimoy with Donna Starkey ( ? -living). They lived in Guysville in 2007 and in Athens in 2014. In 2011, they endured the heartbreak of the death of their daughter. David died at home at the age of 58 on Feb. 7, 2014. Rev. Roger McCoy led the funeral service. Bonnie Kessel later married Alan Hodge.

  • Granddaughter Michele Dunfee (1975-2011) was born on Jan. 13, 1975 in Athens. She bore a daughter, Randi Dawn Harper. Sadly, Michele passed away at Riverside Methodist Hospital in Columbus at the age of 36 on Feb. 18, 2011. In an obituary, the Athens (OH) Messenger noted that Rev. Roger McCoy officiated at the funeral, with interment in Wyers Cemetery in Guysville.


~ Daughter Beverly (Minerd) Williams Thompson ~

Daughter Beverly Minerd (1936-2008) was born on Sept. 1, 1936 in Stewart, Athens County. She attended Rome-Canaan High School and was a member of the Stewart Wesleyan Church. 

On Oct. 7, 1952, at the age of 16, Beverly married 22-year-old farmer Carl E. Williams (1930- ? ), son of Ray and Pearl (Atherson) Williams. At the time, he lived in his hometown of Guysville, Athens County. 

Later, she wed Clarence Thompson (1929-1981), the son of Louis and Margaret (Moore) Thompson of Pomeroy, OH. Clarence had been married once before, and brought four children to the marriage -- Janine Thompson, Debby Thompson, Mike Thompson and Steve Thompson. 

Beverly and Clarence had at least one son of their own, Brian Thompson, and resided in Stewart, Athens County. Several other children were involved in some way -- Nancy Lanning, John Williams and Kelly Davis.

Clarence was employed from 1974 to 1981 as a mechanic at Bill Edwards Pontiac in Athens. He passed away at the age of 52 on May 16, 1981, "following an extended illness," reported the Daily Sentinel. Interment was in the Stewart Cemetery.

Beverly survived her husband by more than a quarter of a century. She kept company for most of that time with her companion, James "Jim" Howell. She died on Dec. 18, 2008, at the age of 72,in Marietta Memorial Hospital. The Athens Messenger published her obituary with a photograph, noting that she was survived by seven grandchildren and five great-grandchildren. Her remains were placed into rest in Stewart Cemetery.


~ Daughter Eudora Area (Minerd) Barnhart VanKeuren ~

Daughter Eudora Area Minerd (1938- ? ) was born in about 1938 in Athens, OH.

She first was wedded to (?) Barnhart.

They were the parents of three sons -- Randy Barnhart, Thomas Barnhart and William Jay Barnhart.

Later, Eudora was united in marriage with (?) VanKeuren and lived in Kissimmee and Eustis, FL.

Eudora earned a living as a certified nursing assistant in Florida nursing homes. She was a member of the Paisley United Methodist Church in Paisley, FL.

Eudora passed into eternity at the age of 79 on Dec. 28, 2017.

Son Randy Barnhart married Beth and they make their home in Barnhart, FL.

Son Thomas Barnhart lives in Deland, FL.

Son William Jay Barnhart was wedded to Stacey. They reside in Paisley, FL.


Copyright 2005-2011, 2015, 2018 Mark A. Miner