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2006 National Reunion 
Features 'The Art of
Creativity,' Draws 90 Cousins

The large, indoor and air conditioned community center was the perfect site for our new home -- with plenty of food, fellowship and connections. Photo by Sid Miller.

Sign beside Rt. 381
In a new, air-conditioned location, and with a crowd of 90 cousins, the national Minerd- Minard- Miner- Minor Reunion celebrated “The Art of Creativity” during the weekend of July 8-9, 2006 in Western Pennsylvania. Our first year in the Indian Creek Valley Community Center was perfect.

The group came from 21 Pennsylvania communities and eight states, including as far south as Florida, and as far west as Indiana.

A rich variety of artistic creations from 20-plus cousins was displayed and enjoyed by all. These ranged from oil paintings to historic photographs to afghans, cross-stitching and music. 

Images of these priceless items will be added to the family’s new, Online Museum of Creativity, much like last year’s launch of the Online Quilt Museum. This museum will be built in August, so plan to check it back then.

Saturday's Picnic and Exhibit of Creations

Indian Creek Valley Community Center
The Saturday picnic relocated this year to the Indian Creek Valley Community Center
near Indian Head, PA, from the Kingwood Picnic Grove where we had been since 1986. By acclamation, we will renew the facility again for next year. 

The Center offers a variety of benefits: fully indoors and thus protection from weather; new, modern restroom and kitchen facilities; flat, hardwood floor for ease of walking and movement by elderly and infirm cousins; and cool air conditioning during the hot day. 

While the Center is five times the cost of our former grove, the expense was more than covered by generous donations of cousins during the passing of the hat, drawings for prizes, and purchases of gift magnets.

Bountiful food buffet
There was more food than could be imagined, or consumed, laid out on buffet tables (seen at left) which were decorated with colorful tablecloths. The "good eats" ranged from delicious meat and vegetable dishes to tasty side dishes and desserts, washed down by cold drinks. 

After lunch, the group was photographed by cousin Sid Miller, followed by a short business meeting led by president Mark Miner. 

It was agreed that while our format traditionally has been to hold the reunion on the second Saturday of July, the date’s proximity to the Fourth of July prevents a significant number of cousins from attending. Thus, with the freedom to change this format in future years, your committee has decided that the dates for next year will be Sat.-Sun., June 16-17, 2007, with the theme of celebrating our German heritage. Mark your calendar!

Sid also presented reunion president Mark Miner with an official, engraved wooden gavel for conducting meetings.


L-R: John Minor, Jim Minor, Bill Shriver and Donald Minor, cousins who hadn't seen each other for decades, or had never met at all


Kids' games
Fun games were held for children, including a piñata and blowing bubbles, and a boxful of toys, led by reunion vice president Peg (Grimm) Mansberry.

The creations and family artifacts were displayed on a ring of tables. The following cousins brought items and lovingly explained their significance:

  • Cynthia Minerd Moringiello, of Hollidaysburg, PA – a painting of a still life showing a book and copy of the old Pittsburgh Gazette newspaper, done by her great grandmother, Margaret Jane (Sheppard) Minerd, circa the 1880s; and a Christmas gift prepared and given by Margaret Minerd to her son, Roy Sheppard Minerd, circa 1895, consisting of Sunday School bulletins bound into a book format.

  • Debbie (Minerd) Polacke, of New Bern, NC –  items brought by her sister, Shirley (Minerd) Dick, of Hinckley, OH, and the granddaughters of James William Minerd of Dunbar, PA. These included painstaking painting and glazing of dishware as well as a porcelain bowl. 

  • Wendy (King) Zeller, of Dunnellon, FL -- an embroidered tablecloth, dresser scarf, crocheted towels and pineapple doily made in the 1940s by her grandmother, Blanche (Miner) Sanner; and a crocheted blind pull and boy and girl dress potholders crafted in the 1950s by her great grandmother, Amanda (Burkett) Miner.

  • Doris (Sands) Hawker, of Morgantown, WV – the daughter of Alma (Ream) Sands -- a variety of items she has quilted, sewn and painted.

  • Constance (Jagerski) Miner of Wexford, PA – of the family of Odger Miner – a quilted scene mounted on a wooden frame; and a cross-stitch of a duck figure.

  • Sue Ellen (Colbert) Martin, of Hopwood, PA – the great-great granddaughter of Missouri (Younkin) Wingerd – a painting she made as a teenager, showing a trolley accident in Dickerson Run, PA, based upon an actual photograph. Her grandfather had been injured in the accident, but fortunately survived.

  • Betty (Heinbaugh) Hall of Uniontown, PA – granddaughter of Missouri (Younkin) Wingerd – colorful afghans that she and a friend had woven.

  • Mark Miner, of Beaver, PA – a copy of the book, Collier’s Photographic History of World War II, featuring a published image of wrecked destroyers after the attack on Pearl Harbor, taken by cousin and Navy photographer Harold S. Fawcett.

  • Merle Daw, of Penn Hills, PA – a piano chair that his great grandfather, Rev. Isaac H. Minerd, crafted and presented to a granddaughter on her wedding day in 1907. (Merle removed 10 coats of paint in restoring the chair to its natural wood finish.) He also displayed two knives crafted by his cousin, Everett “Lefty” Minerd of Virginia Beach, VA.

  • Bonita (Work) Warrick, of Mill Run, PA – cotton rugs woven by her grandmother, Ada (Whipkey) Minerd, also of Mill Run. While made to be used, the rugs are now lovingly preserved.

  • William Shriver of Cortland, OH – the grandson of William Thomas Minor – beautifully finished wooden boxes that he made as gifts for grandchildren.

  • Gloria (Moennig) Carey of Fort Wayne, IN – a variety of aprons and hand towels found in an old trunk of her  mother’s, Goldie (Minerd) Moennig. There were towels representing each day of the week, with the lettering stitched on each one.

  • Peg (Grimm) Mansberry, of Normalville, PA – great-granddaughter of Jennie (Enos) Snyder – a quilt made by her grandmother in the 1940s; a rug crafted by her granddaughter Alyssa last year; an arrangement of flowers from her brother’s garden, representing the fifth generation in the family to grow that variety, dating back to Joanna (Minerd) Enos of the Civil War era.

Creations by Dave and Peg Mansberry and Kerry Grimm


Indians fans in enemy territory
Recorded music was played  throughout the day, featuring the steel drum performance of Joseph Minor; and Jack and Carol (Surber) Lewis of the Oriskany Strings in Oriskany, VA.

Despite being deep in the heart of Pittsburgh Pirates country, Dave Mansberry and Bill Carey, meeting for the first time, learned that they shared a love for the Cleveland Indians baseball team. Despite numerous threats, Dave and Bill wore their enemy ballcaps for a photo, striking a fairly defiant pose for the photographer.

For the second time, two families attended from Indiana, whose ancestor John Minerd Jr. left Fayette County, PA, circa 1817, and settled in eastern Ohio before pushing west and settling in Indiana in 1844. The first of their family branch to return to their ancestral homeland after the passage of more than 150 years were John and Arlene Minerd of Monroeville, IN; and Bill and Gloria Carey of Fort Wayne. 

Following the reunion, a group went to the Indian Creek Baptist Church in nearby Mill Run, to view the Revolutionary War grave marker of the "father of us all," Jacob Minerd Sr. The marker was dedicated at our reunion in 2003. The group also studied the monument at the church honoring all of its members, including many of our cousins, who have served in the U.S. Armed Forces during wartime.


Doris Hawker's table of creations, with daughters Lisa Janoske and Connie Gibson


Sunday's Show and Tell and Web Tour

On Sunday, a group of 12 gathered at the Days Inn Motel in Donegal, PA, for a display of antique family creations and tour of the Minerd.com website by reunion president and website founder Mark Miner. Among the items featured were sheet music of cousin Annette Hanshaw, who sang with the Dorsey brothers and Benny Goodman in New York in the late 1920s and early ‘30s; the book ‘Tis the Set of the Sails, authored by Mary McGirk; the book Fixed Mix Seeks Same by Dean Minerd; the book John Winebrenner by Dr. G. Richard Kern; the book Portrait Painting for Beginners by John W. Pratten; the Ohio Farmer newspaper produced in the late 1800s by William H. Lawrence and his brothers; The Messenger community newspaper published in Fayette County, PA by Ferne (Minerd) Work and others to raise local morale during World War II; the book Memoirs of Ludwig Zychlinski, translated into English by Eugene Podraza; and a variety of poems, songs, sketches and painted objects by the “Mountain Poet” of Mill Run, the late Allen Edward Harbaugh.


Your Reunion Committee:

President: Mark A. Miner, Beaver, PA
Vice President:
Peg (Grimm) Mansberry, Normalville, PA
Doris (Sands) Hawker, Morgantown, WV
Rosella (Resh) Miner, Grantsville, MD

Past Reunions:
See recaps of reunions in 20192017 - 2015 - 2013 - 2011 - 2009 - 2008 - 2007 - 2006 - 2005 - 2004 - 2003 - 2002 - 2001 - 2000 - 1990s - 1980s - 1910s-1930s


Copyright © 2006 Mark A. Miner. Photographs by Sid Miller, Peg Mansberry and Mark Miner.