Mrs. Betty Burkhart
Nanty Glo Journal
August 27, 1942
Communities And Their First Settlers (Continued)
one time this section was called the Murray tract but was later owned by
Wm. Stewart. David Burkhart purchased the Stewart farm but resold part
of it to that family, then built his own house, which is now the center
of the Millwood community. On June 21, 1912 Mr. Burkhart and his wife,
Ellen (Shaffer) Burkhart, had acre lots surveyed and presented one to
each of their six children. These lots bordered on the right-of-way of
the newly built Southern Cambria Railway and as a name was needed to
designate the place, Roscoe Burkhart, a son, chose the name Millwood
which was most appropriate. Acres of woodland surrounded the sawmill,
which his father owned and operated. So the little community of
Millwood came into existence.
A son, Harry, built his home on
his lot and two daughters, Huldah (Burkhart) Rorabaugh and Letty
(Burkhart) Wissinger, built on their property. After Roscoe's death,
Wade Burkhart, a grandson, established his home on Roscoe's lot. From
time to time others have come into the community until twelve families
are now residents there. Ross Rager who lives on the farm cleared and
owned first bv his grandfather, John Rager is in the Millwood
community. Martin Rager son of John, lived all his life on the farm,
which is one of the best in the section.
David Burkhart and his wife were
lifelong members of the Pike Brethren Church and were among its most
active supporters. Daniel Burkhart, an elder brother, who was
well-known in the township, was also active in the affairs of the
Brethren Church, and was one of its charter members. Olin and Ruby
(Burkhart) Arnott of New York City are two of the children of David and
In early times this community
was a vast forest, with its population limited to the occupants of two
small cabins that stood near the old Washington road. They were the
homes of two French families by the name of Ballou, although on old maps
the name is spelled Bellows, and this corner was known as Bellows
Cabins. Later, with the building of additional roads, other settlers
came to this part of the country.
This small, but rapidly growing
community was officially named Mundy's Square, although to the writer's
knowledge it has never been called that. More will be said of that
later. However, the place was named for the Monday family who were
among the earliest residents of this community. Now we spell the name
"Mundy," but Monday is the correct spelling.
Martin Monday, the first of his
family in this locality, came to this country from Germany in 1848 and
went to Pittsburgh where he married Katherine Kauffman, who had come
from Germany two years previously. After their marriage the couple came
here and settled just beyond the township line, near the present airport
site, on what is known as the George place. Mr. Monday purchased 200
acres of land and built his home on the corner where Luther's restaurant
now stands. The large tract of land extended in all four directions
from the corner and was purchased for the sum of $300 complete. Mr.
Monday received his naturalization papers in 1851. He was the father of
eight children and was one of the most highly respected citizens of the
county. He died in April 1882, and his wife died in 1903.
A daughter of the Monday's,
Cassie, met a tragic death when she was 17 years of age. Buser and
Howser of Pittsburgh murdered her and Polly Paul of near Summerhill,
with whom she was staying at the time, in 1865. The trial of the
murderers was a famous one. Miss Monday had been staying at the home of
Miss Paul, helping with her weaving and about dusk one evening a
neighbor's daughter, in search of cows, heard screaming at Miss Paul's
home and saw two men running from that direction. About noon the next
day the body of Miss Paul was found in the barn and that of Miss Monday
in the orchard. Both had been brutally killed with heavy clubs, which
were later found. The younger girl was presumably trying to evade her
assailants and was climbing over a "steak-and-rider" fence when they
caught her as the fence broke. The crime was committed for money, which
Miss Paul had in her possession. At first suspicion rested upon a man
named Ream and a relative of his named Riddle. They were arrested and
confined to prison and in 1865 were tried for the murders. In the
meantime, however, a reward of 500 had been offered for the arrest and
conviction of the murderers and Houser and Buser were arrested in an
Allegheny City (Pittsburgh) rooming house on the strength of a story
related by a colored man with who they had been on friendly terms, and
who had been a cell-mate of theirs in jail at one time. After a six-day
trial the men were found guilty, and were hanged in April 1866.
Another child of this pioneer
family was Frances, who married Christopher C. King, a jeweler of
Pittsburgh for many years. She died at the home of a niece, Mrs.
William Snyder of Mundy's Corner, at the age of 85. A son, John, was
stable boss for the Cambria Steel Company for many years, and was the
father of six children, one of who is Mrs. Snyder.
A well-known man to the
residents of Cambria county, and particularly to this section at one
time was Elias, the youngest son of Martin Monday and his wife. He
never married. Elias held several township offices at one time or
another and the sight of him walking or driving over to the country side
was a familiar one. He died in 1928 at the age of 66 years. Mrs. Mary
(Monday) Varner of East Taylor township is another well-known child of
Martin Monday and his wife. The frame house and barn Martin built was
later bought by William Crouse, from the John Monday heirs, about 1903.
In 1890 Alexander Dearmin had a
post office about a half mile from the crossroads, which was called
Dearmin in his honor. The name Dearmin appears on old maps to designate
this section, instead of Mundy's Corner. Mail was carried here from
Conemaugh and Johnstown, and from here it would be taken into Glen Glade
(Nanty-Glo). George Simmons would get the mail for delivery. In later
years, Elmer Rodkey of Vinco was the mail carrier.
Alexander Dearmin came here from
Altoona and bought his land from Israel Kemmerer who lived in
Hollidaysburg. In addition to being postmaster, Mr. Dearmin also
conducted a general merchandise store at his place. The Dearmin
community is now considered part of Mundy's Corner but the half dozen or
more houses built at that time are still standing and the Dearmin
descendants still reside here. At one time near the old water trough at
Harry Daughenbaugh's place there was a toll gate, and a hotel stood just
above, on the hill, where the highway now runs.
Among the old time residents of
this community we find the name of Adam Rose whose 150 descendants are
or have been residents of this community. He was a son of parents who
were German born and he married Mary Ann Simmons, daughter of the first
settler on the farm now owned and occupied by George Rose, his
grandson. David Rose, a son of Adam, married Amanda Dishong in 1872.
He had a sawmill and had a small coal mine, in addition to the farm.
David was the father of Arch, George, Howard, Benjamin, William, (of
Somerset county), John and Abbie (Rose) Leidy and Ella (Rose) Grove.
Adams' daughter, Rose, married Noah Dishong in 1871 and they settled on
what is now the Deetscreek farm. Another daughter of the first Rose was
Catherine Lavina (Rose) Link of Clinefelter community who married Jacob
Link, the grandson of a first settler in that community.
To Be Continued Next Week
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