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 CONFER. 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).
Three books in the Pennsylvania Room of the Centre County Library in Bellefonte apparently deal with the Confer family. They are: Dorothy Dorman's History of George W. and Sarah J. Nyman Confer Family, Milesburg, Pa., Doris Hagen's Our Family Tree: the Family of Benjamin F. Confer and Nancy M. (Nannie) Watkins, and Patricia Spencer's The Families: Hawkins, Mills, Confer and Gillett, with Related Lines.
There are 11 different first-name entries for Confer in John Blair Linn's History of Centre and Clinton County (1883). In addition, there are many references to the name in Beers' Commemorative Biographical Record of Central Pennsylvania (1898).
And, now, your ancestors' CONFER neighbors in 1890:
In BELLEFONTE Borough:
John, 44, teamster--221 South Spring Sarah James 10 John Jr. 8 Lucy Minnie--West Linn
In BOGGS Township:Ezekial, 51, farmer--Roland Charity A. Ira P. 25 James T. 23 James A. 19 Jesse P. 17 Emma L. Irvin M. Nancy E, Edward N. 8 Jerome A., 49, farmer--Milesburg Margaret E, Edward 19 Nelson A. 18 Ethel E. Gertrude Fannie Philip, 56, farmer--Milesburg Emeline Christopher 25 Solomon 17 Richard S., 21, laborer--Milesburg Laura Arthur 3 mos. William, 39, farmer--Milesburg Laura H. William D. 8 Maud W. Mary P. Clarence 2 William H., 28, laborer--Milesburg Mary L. Elsie Jennie
In CURTIN Township:John F., 57, farmer--Romola
In GREGG Township:Alice R.--Spring Mills Benjamin, 39, laborer--Spring Mills Mary A. William 14 John N. Sarah Annie Chestie Philip 2 Cyrus B., 9--Farmers Mills Jared, 35, laborer--Spring Mills Henrietta Maggie Kate Elsie John W., 31, farmer--Penn Hall Martha E. Charles W. 6 Peter S., 60, farmer--Spring Mills Susanna Howard 31 Ezra 19 Elmer 15 Rosetta Sarah J.
In HAINES Township:Absalom, 67, laborer--Millheim Malinda Emanuel C., 27, laborer--Poe Mills Sarah Fred N. 2 Perry F., 54, farmer--Aaronsburg Mary John A. 6 Blanche E.
In HALF-MOON Township:Franklin P., 38, farmer--Stormstown Mary Lloyd 15 Toner 13 Charles E. 7
In HOWARD Borough:Wm. E., 32, merchant Carrie J. Ada L. Myrtle K. Minnie B. Florence V.
In HOWARD Township:Henry, 33--Howard Mary Delford 12 Charles 11 Robert 9 Maudie Bessie V. Alfred 4 Anna Jacob O., 26, laborer--Mt. Eagle William L. 26 Bella Mary E. John W., 45, farmer--Howard Elizabeth A. Harry A. 10 Michael, 40, farmer--Howard Mary E. William 17 mos. Michael, 60, farmer--Howard Rebecca J. Frances Bertha Charles E. 13 Nancy C.--Howard Robert, 30, farmer--Howard Cynthia A. William L. 2 Michael E. 3 mos. William F., 43, farmer--Howard Mary E. Clayton 12 Benson 10 Cynthia O. Sallie I. Clyde V. 2
In LIBERTY Township:Danie D., 36, farmer--Blanchard Matilda M. Harry L. 5 Howard C. 4 Lee R. 2 David F., 63, farmer--Blanchard Prudence Ida B. Sylvester P. 20 Taylor J. 18 Alice R. Andrew D. David R., 31, farmer--Blanchard Margaret A. Anna B. Jacob H. 5 Alvy J. 3 Mollie Jacob, 73, retired--Blanchard Mollie
In MILES Township:Peter, 60--Rebersburg Hannah
In MILESBURG Borough:John A., 29, clerk Eva E. Mary J. Sarah E. Solomon 5 Clark 3 Maria M. Solomon, 59, undertaker
In PHILIPSBURG Borough:Emma--Front St.
In POTTER Township:Frances--Tusseyville John, 31, laborer--Centre Hall Mary--Centre Hall Mary E.--Tusseyville Michael, 62, farmer--Potters Mills Mary A. David 31 James R. 16 Henry Elizabeth F. Samuel, 16--Centre Hall Samuel, 38, laborer--Potters Mills Elizabeth Louisa James D. 3
In SNOW SHOE Township:John G., 45, laborer--Peal ` Sophia D. Maud M. Wilbur R. 7 Bertha C. Virgia L.
In SPRING Township:George, 28, laborer--Bellefonte Annie L.