This column is part of a feature series which focuses on a different Centre County family each week. Five new columns will be released each month unless some technical difficulty enters the picture.
This column's focus is on BENNER. An effort has been made to identify all persons carrying that name in the 1890 U.S. Census, using the Centre County business directory which was formed from a preliminary review of that census before the larger set of 1890 U.S. Census records was destroyed by fire. (Sadly, the postal directory does not typically provide the ages of females, but it's the best record we've got).
Two books in the Pennsylvania Room of the Centre County Library in Bellefonte apparently deal in part with the Benner family. They are: Philip Benner's, Lenore Peters Benner's, and Eleanore Benner Bathurst's The General Philip Benner Family (1987), and Charles William Forney's Forney's Five Family Records of Genealogy of Benners, Clappers, Ettlemans, Forneys, and Studys, with Historical Sketches (Boone, Iowa: Standard Printing Co., 1931).
There are 27 first-name entries for Benner in John Blair Linn's History of Centre and Clinton County (1883). In addition, there are several mentions of the name in Beers' Commemorative Biographical Record of Central Pennsylvania (1898).
And, now, your ancestors' Benner neighbors in 1890:
Harvey H., 63, notary public--113 E. High Lydia Jennie--122 S. Spring Henry H. 24 Kate H. Sarah E.--8 W. High Delinda H. Thomas R., 48, letter carrier--121 E. High Eva A. Herbert T. 16 Lidie H.
BENNER Township:Harvey, 43, laborer--Bellefonte Elizabeth Samuel R. 21 William H. 19 Maud Harriet R. Budd C. 6 Minnie A.--Bellefonte Mordecai W., 38, laborer--Bellefonte Ada C. Ira T. 12 Marion M. 10 Laura B. Henry B. Nettie H.--Bellefonte Philip H., 65, farmer--Bellefonte Mary T. Sarah John W. 23 Clarence 12 Jared D. 9 Matilda D.
COLLEGE Township:John, 21, laborer--State College William, 53, laborer--Lemont Mary H.
HAINES Township:Benjamin, 57, farmer--Woodward Mary E. Sarah C. William W. 22 Mary J. Daniel 15 Chester A.--Woodward Thomas K., 33, laborer--Bellefonte Mary A. Elsie R. Lizzie S. Kate J. William W. 10 mos.
PHILIPSBURG Borough:William H., 40, miller--6th St. Henrietta William A. 14 Lucy Catherine Duncan 7 Nettie Harry 3
POTTER Township:Milton S., 12--Potters Mills William H., 67, farmer--Centre Hall Nancy George O. 26 Bessie B. Frank W. 18 Breeze