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William Rose


William's grave, Paddytown

William Rose was born on Dec. 15, 1866 in Kingwood, Somerset County, PA, the son of Charles and Catherine (Minerd) Rose

He was one of many of our cousins killed in a work-related accident in the coal, coke and steel industries.

In March 1892, William -- at age 26 -- married Margaret Leichliter ( ? -1941) of Connellsville, Fayette County, PA. She was the daughter of Henry and Matilda "Tillie" (Schrock) Leichliter of Connellsville. Their marriage license, obtained at the Fayette County courthouse, was reported in the Uniontown Genius of Liberty newspaper.

Their five children were Ray "William" Rose, Clarence Logan Rose, James Verner Rose, Earl Rose and Margaret "Bessie" Wilson.

In 1897, William purchased a 49-acre farm tract from his parents, located near Ursina, Somerset County. The farm was adjacent to those of his brother Grant and sister Jennie Burgess. William also worked for the Laurel Mining Company at Shipley Station near Confluence, Somerset County.


Meyersdale Republic, 1916

Tragedy struck in late autumn 1916, when William was struck and killed by a railroad train while trespassing on the tracks on his way to work at the Laurel Mining Company. The Dec. 7, 1916 Meyersdale Republican reported that he was:

      ...on the Western Maryland Railway about a mile West of Confluence on Monday morning.  H e was employed by the Laurel Mining Co. at Shipley station, near where his body was found. He had been at his home at Ursina Saturday night and Sunday, and was likely on his way to his work. While the family resided at Ursina, he had a shanty near the mines, where he stayed during the week and usually spent Sunday at home. When the body was found, the back part of the skull was crushed in, his hip broken and his chest all bruised and broken... William Rose was an industrious man and his sudden death is much lamented.

William was buried at the Younkin Cemetery at Paddytown, near Kingwood, Somerset County. Several members of the family of his cousin, Ephraim Minerd, also are interred at the cemetery. Among those attending the funeral, reported the Connellsville Daily Courier, were his sister and brother in law, Jennie and William Burgess, of Perryopolis, Fayette County, PA.

Maggie made her home in Ursina circa 1924. 

She suffered a stroke and died at the age of 65, in Somerset Community Hospital, on May 6, 1941. Her remains were removed to the Younkin Cemetery near Paddytown for burial. An obituary in the Uniontown Daily News Standard reported that she was survived as follows: "Clarence, Hooversville; William, address unknown; Earl, Piedmont, W.Va., and Verna, Cleveland, Ohio."

Picturesque Younkin Cemetery in the gentle hills of Turkeyfoot, where William Rose rests for eternity


~ Son Ray "William" Rose ~

Son Ray William Rose (1902- ? ) was born in 1902.

In May 1941, when his mother died, the newspaper obituary listed his whereabouts as "address unknown."


~ Son Clarence Logan Rose ~

Son Clarence Logan Rose (1903-1984) was born in 1903 in Somerset County, and was a young teenager when his father was killed. 

At the age of 21, Clarence married 21-year-old Edith Mae Tressler (1907-2005), daughter of George Elmer and Jane (Wiltrout) Tressler of Harnedsville, Somerset County. Their wedding was held on Nov. 10, 1924 at Somerset by Rev. O.B. Patterson. Clarence's occupation at the time was coal mining.

They had six children -- Markel Eugene Rose Sr., Bernard Rose, Arthur Rose, Frances Mae Weyand, Opal Hagans and Donna Jean Shaffer. 

Clarence was a coal miner and lived at Ursina, Stoystown and Hooversville, Somerset County. The Roses were members of the Somerset Christian Fellowship. Clarence was a member of Liberty Temple in Cresaptown, MD, and Tire Hill Local of the United Mine Workers of America. 

Clarence died at age 81 on Dec. 15, 1984, and was buried at the Odd Fellows Cemetery in Stoystown. 

Edith survived him by 21 years, and passed away in 2005, at the age of 98. 

Son Markel Eugene Rose Sr. (1925-2012) was born on May 20, 1925 in Stoystown, Somerset County. After attending Hooversville High School, he served in World War II, receiving among others the Purple Heart as well as the French Embassy Liberation Award and later a letter of commendation from President Bill Clinton. In 1947, at the age of about 22, he married Betty Cornell ( ? - ? ), a native of Gambrills, Anne Arundel County, MD. The couple produced two children -- Markel Eugene Rose Jr. and Janice Cooper. At the age of 37, Markel and the family relocated to Gambrills. He was employed at the Baltimore-Washington DC International Airport for 17 years as proprietor of the Gulf gasoline filling station. He also worked for the Army for 11 years, in the Reading coal mines and at NSA. Said the Somerset Daily American, he "enjoyed restoring antique cars, gardening, flowers, playing pool at Odenton Senior Center, car shows where he showed his 1937 and 1938 Chevys, and award winning antique cars." Markel passed away in BWMC Glen Burnie at the age of 87 on June 13, 2012. He was laid to rest in the Maryland Veterans Cemetery in Crownsville, MD.


Purple Heart

Son Bernard Leo "Dutch" Rose (1927-2017) was born on June 8, 1927 in Reading Mines, PA. He married Susan "Sue" Kang ( ? - ? ). They produced two sons -- Derek Rose and Kevin Rose. They made their residence in Stoystown, Somerset County. Reported the Somerset Daily American, "He was an Army Veteran of World War II and the Korean War. He was a Purple Heart recipient. He enjoyed fishing and boating." Bernard died at Somerset Hospital at the age of 90 on June 12, 2017. Burial was in the IOOF Cemetery in Stoystown, with Rev. Larry Weigle officiating.

Daughter Opal Rose ( ? - ? ) married Donald J. Hagans ( ? - ? ). The couple has lived in Kantner, Somerset County.

Daughter Frances Mae Rose ( ? - ? ) was born in (?). On May 1, 1957, she was wed to Korean War veteran Arthur Garfield Weyand (Dec. 3, 1931-1986), son of Calvin and Mary (Miller) Weyand and stepson of Ralph Rose. Their four children were Fred Weyand, Kathleen Mae Zimmerman, Richard Weyand and Robert Eugene Weyand. Arthur was self-employed as owner of Weyand Trucking and Weyand Repair Shop and was a member of the Somerset County Truckers Association. Sadly, Arthur died on June 4, 1986 at the age of 54. He was laid to rest in the Stoystown Odd Fellows Cemetery, with Rev. William J. Dodson and Rev. Charles T. Kelly co-officiating at the funeral. An obituary was printed in the Somerset Daily American. Arthur's death left his widow with four children in their home. She has survived for decades and, circa 2017, lived in Stoystown.

  • Grandson Fred Weyand
  • Granddaughter Kathleen Mae Weyand married (?) Zimmerman.
  • Grandson Richard Weyand
  • Grandson Robert Eugene Weyand

Daughter Donna "Jean" Rose ( ? - ? ) was born in (?). He married James Irvin Shaffer Sr. (March 30, 1935-1995), a native of Boswell, Somerset County and the son of Cloyd and Margaret (Gray) Shaffer. The couple's marriage endured for 24 years. Their seven children were Dona Jean Shaffer, James Irvin Shaffer Jr., James Allen Shaffer, Donald Ray Shaffer, Robert William Shaffer and Melissa Phillippi. The Shaffers made their home in Hollsopple, Somerset County, and they belogned to the St. Thomas Lutheran Church. James supported the family with is work for Firestone Heavy Equipment, M.F. Fetterolf Coal Company and Lon Air Dix. he also owned and operated a family business, Shaffer Trucking. James Sr. died in Addison at the age of 60 on Aug. 1, 1995, and was interred in the Stoystown Odd Fellows Cemetery, with Rev. Elvin Holsopple officiating.

  • Granddaughter Dona Jean Shaffer lived with her parents in 1995.
  • Grandson James I. Shaffer Jr., married Melissa Claycomb of Kansas.
  • Granddaughter Belinda Shaffer wedded (?) Bittner and made a home in Boswell, Somerset County.
  • Granddaughter Margaret Shaffer was joined in wedlock with (?) Trobino and relocated to Alabama.
  • Grandson James Allen Shaffer dwelled in Boswell.
  • Grandson Donald Ray Shaffer resided in Cairnbrook, PA.
  • Grandson Robert William Shaffer also migrated to Alabama.
  • Granddaughter Melissa Shaffer was united in matrimony with (?) Phillippi. In 1995, she was in Boswell.

Son Arthur W. Rose (1931-2002) was born on June 7, 1931 in Reading Mines, Somerset County. He earned a living over the years through employment with U.S. Steel Corporation as well as B and R. Trucking and as operator of his own business, Art Excavating. He does not appear to have married or to have reproduced. He made his home on Kennedy Road in Stoystown. He died at home at the age of 71 on June 17, 2002. Rev. Gerald L. Myers preached the funeral sermon, followed by burial in the Stoystown Odd Fellows Cemetery. An obituary was published in the Somerset Daily American.


~ Son James "Verner" Rose ~

Son James "Verner" Rose (1907- ? ) was born in 1907.

He and his brother Earl earned income in young manhood as coal miners and made their home near Confluence in Henry Clay Township, Fayette County. Verner stood 5 feet, 5 inches tall with a dimpled chin, light blue eyes and dark brown hair.

At the age of 21, in December 1928, the brothers were convicted of stealing copper wire from a local coal mine. The alleged crime was reported in the Uniontown Daily News Standard. The brothers were found guilty and on Jan. 19, 1929 were sentenced to a jail term of between 15 months and 36 months. They were incarcerated at the Western State Penitentiary in Pittsburgh. In February 1930, the penitentiary board recommended that Verner and Earl be paroled on March 14, 1930.

Verner resided in Melcroft, Fayette County circa 1932. In January 1932, the brothers broke into a series of empty automobiles parked during a high school basketball game between Somerset Township and Salisbury. Among the stolen items recovered by law enforcement were a windshield defroster, tire and wheel, tools and chains. The crime was covered in the Somerset Daily American.

He lived at Williamsburg, Whitley County, KY in 1984.

~ Son Earl B. Rose ~

Son Earl B. Rose (1908- ? ) was born in 1908 in Upper Turkeyfoot Township, Somerset County.

Earl stood 5 feet, 7½ inches tall. He had grey eyes and chestnut brown hair and weighed 152 lbs. He and his brother Verner labored as coal miners circa 1928 in the vicinity of Ursina in Henry Clay Township, Fayette County.

In December 1928, Earl and Verner were found guilty of theft of between 800 lbs and 1,000 lbs. of copper wire from the mine of the Reading Coal Co. The brothers were incarcerated at the Western State Penitentiary in Pittsburgh. In February 1930, the penitentiary board recommended that the two be paroled on March 14, 1930.

In January 1932, the brothers dwelled at Melcroft, Fayette County and broke into a series of empty automobiles parked during a high school basketball game between Somerset Township and Salisbury.

Earl got into additional trouble in July 1932 when he and two other Melcroft men were "harassing Somerset county farmers with their furtive carryings on," said the Somerset Daily American. The men were jailed in Somerset for having stolen 20 chicks from Frank Burck, 41 chickens from Edward Harmon and tools from W.H. Carver, selling the livestock to the White Star Hotel in Jennertown for 11 cents a pound. Said the Daily American, "Numerous times during the past month, the men are said to have called at the hotel between 5 and 6 in the morning with a load of chickens. When the trips had become regular and hotel attaches asked why they came so early in the morning, they offered the ruse that theyhad to return home early so they could help their father haul in hay." During the spree, he used the fictitious name "Burnzo Lichliter," a play on his mother's maiden name. He was found guilty and sentenced to the Allegheny County Workhouse, where he was put to work in the kitchen.

He made his home in Piedmont, Mineral County, WV in May 1941, at the time of death of his mother. At that time, he was mentioned by name in her obituary in the Uniontown Daily News Standard

He apparently was deceased by 1984.

~ Daughter Bessie (Rose) Wilson ~

Daughter Bessie Rose (1912- ? ) was born in 1912. 

She married (?) Wilson ( ? - ? ). 

She may have resided in Cleveland, OH circa 1941.

By 1974, she lived at Mine 40 near Windber, Somerset County. Windber was a coal mining town, named using a combination of the name of the owner of the local Berwind-White Coal Company, Edward J. Berwind. The Associated Press once reported that "Berwind leaders wanted Windber to the model of innovation and set a standard for other company towns, so architects laid extra-wide streets and built homes that had access to a central heating system. [It also had] electricity before many neighboring towns."

She appears to have been deceased by 1984.

Bird's-eye view of Windber


Copyright 2000, 2003, 2005, 2012, 2016 Mark A. Miner