This journey is going to lead me down the path of the Birch's and all those other names that have joined them. I know this will take me to England, Germany, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Illinois and elsewhere. The men in this family will be working as coalminers, railroad brakemen and Laborers in Saw Mills.

The common name "birch" is derived from an old Germanic root, birka, with the Proto-Indo-European root *bherəg, "white, bright; to shine."

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Sunday's Obituary ~ Ananias J. Horner & Sarah (nee Eash) Horner

Ananias Horner & Sarah (nee Eash) Horner
 Johnstown Tribune-Democrat
October 27, 1937

Ananias Horner, 78, died at his home in Kelso yesterday after a long illness.  He was a retired employee of the Bird Coal Company, having worked at the Kelso mines for many years until six years ago.  Born in Cambria County, he was a son of Archie and Polly (Helsel) Horner.  Surviving are his widow, the former Sarah Eash, with whom he was united in marriage November 16, 1884, and these children, Irvin, Charles, and Harry, all of Kelso; Clarence Horner of Windber; William Horner of Benscreek; Harvey Horner of Blough; Katie, wife of Harvey Gindlesperger of Johnstown R.D. 4; Minnie, wife of Clayton Mose of Dale Borough, and Ida, wife of Jesse Speicher of Kelso.  Mr. Horner also is survived by 38 grandchildren, 20 great-grandchildren and the following brothers and sisters: William Horner of Bedford; Edward Horner of Bolivar; Elizabeth Horner of Sherman Street; Mrs. Kathryn Tesh and Mrs. Lena Spankenberger, both of Franklin Street, and Mrs. Elmer Knipple of Dale Borough.  Funeral services will be held at 2 o'clock tomorrow afternoon at the Tire Hill Church of Brethren, by Rev. H. C. Hess, pastor.  Internment will be in Maple Spring Cemetery, near Holsopple.

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Johnstown Tribune
Wednesday Evening, April 19, 1944
Sarah E. Horner Dies at age 77; Funeral Friday
Resident of Tire Hill section most of her life, Husband died in 1937 Mrs. Sarah (Eash) Horner, 77, died at 10:30 o'clock last night at the home of her son, Harvey Horner, 666 Coleman Ave., where she had resided since the death of her husband, Ananias on Oct. 26, 1937.  She had been seriously ill the past two weeks.  Mrs. Horner was born in Richmond Township, Cambria County, on April 15, 1867, a daughter of the late Adam and Catherine (Yoder) Eash.  Her husband was a former employee of the Bird Coal Company.  Mrs. Horner is survived by eight children - Irvin, Tire Hill; Katie, wife of Harvey Gindlesperger, R.D. 4; Minnie, wife of Clayton Moose, 113 Homestead Ave.; Charles, Tire Hill; Clarence, Windber; William and Harry, both of Bridge St; and Harvey, mentioned.  A daughter, Mrs. Ida Speicher, died on Jan. 8 of this year.  Mrs. Horner also leave one brother, Noah Eash, Hollsopple R.D. 2; one sister, Mrs. Lucinda Howard, Tire Hill; 43 grandchildren and 44 great-grandchildren.  The deceased was a member of the Tire Hill Church of the Brethren, in which section she resided most of her  life.  Friends are being received at the Harvey Horner home.  Funeral services will be held at the Tire Hill Church of the Brethren at 2:30 p.m. Friday by Rev. Dorsey Rotruck, assisted by Rev. Earl C. Weaver, pastor of the Park Ave. U.B. Church. Internment will be in the Maple Spring Cemetery under the direction of the Henderson Funeral Home.

Tire Hill Church of the Brethren, Pennsylvania
Maple Spring Cemetery, Pennsylvania

Warm Regards,

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Surname Saturday ~ Birch (England & Pennsylvania)

Birch ~ Recorded in many forms including Birch, Burch,  Birk, and Burk (English & Irish), Birken, Birckmann, Birchner (German), Berckman and Van den Berch (Dutch and Flemish), Bjork, Bjorkan, Bjerkan and Bjorkaman (Scandanavian and Swedish), this interesting surname is either topographical, occupational or locational. In England where most recordings are to be found, it may originate from a place called Birch in the county of Essex, the derivation being from the Olde English pre 7th century word "bryce" meaning breaking; and hence land made suitable for agriculture, or it may be from the villages of Birch Much and Birch Little in Herefordshire.  These have a different derivation from the Olde English word "birce", meaning birch trees. Secondly, the name may be a topographical for someone who lived by a birch tree, or birch wood, and thirdly occupational, either for a plowman or farmer, or a forester.

The first recorded spelling of the family name anywhere in the world is believed to be that of Walter de la Birche. This was dated 1182, in the charters of King Henry 11nd, 1154 - 1189.

Surnames became necessary when governments introduced personal taxation. In England this was sometimes known as Poll Tax.
copyright: Name Origin Research

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Some of the Birch names I am researching are;
James Henry Birch 
    Born: 09 Oct 1879 Staffordshire, England
    Died: 27 Jun 1967 Cleveland, Cuyahoga, Ohio
              James married Annie Warrender on 21 June 1904 in Cambria County, Pennsylvania
Annie (nee Warrender) Birch
    Born: abt 1882  England
    Died: before 1940

James and Annie had the following children;

  • Sarah E. Birch ~ 1905 Pennsylvania – 1989  married: John N. Bloise
  • James H. Birch ~ 1908 Pennsylvania – 1963  married: Mary H. Hruska
  • Ethel M. Birch ~ 1910 Pennsylvania –           married: unknown
  • Alfred George Birch ~ 1913 Pennsylvania – 1983   married: Beatrice Jean Murray
  • Florence Violet Birch ~ 1914 Pennsylvania – 1984  married: 1. McWilliams-died 1938  2. John Thomas O'Rourke
  • Ernest O. Birch1916 Pennsylvania – 1972    married: unknown
  • Edna Leona Birch ~ 1921 Pennsylvania –         married: unknown 

  • If anyone has any information on any of these Birch's or has any photos I would appreciate it if you would contact me. I have a Birch tree on ancestry if anyone is interested.  Birch.Family.Tree    Thanks!


    Warm Regards,