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 ROSS. 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).
Five books in the Pennsylvania Room of the Centre County Library in Bellefonte apparently deal with the Ross family. They are: Grace Curtis' Fahl-Fall and Allied Families, Helen Dunkle's John, James & David Ross Family of Centre County: A Genealogical Record, Albert Henry's The Ross Family, Kitty Lowder's A History of Our Heritage: History of Central Pennsylvania Families Lowder-Ross, Sents-Earon, Miller-Billet, and Anita Wallace's Bailey History with Branches of Laird, Wallace, Hemphill, Ross, Gardner, Saunders.
There are 36 different first-name entries for Ross 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' ROSS neighbors in 1890:
In BENNER Township:
James, 25, laborer--Bellefonte Finch F.
In CENTRE HALL Borough:Mollie A. Frank J. 18 Lettie A.
In COLLEGE Township:James, 32, laborer--Linden Hall Ellen John H. 5 James I., 63, merchant--Lemont Mary Laura L. Elmer C. 24 Mary E.
In HARRIS Township:James, 33, merchant--Linden Hall Flora Ella William I. 5 Charles 3 Earl 7 mos. James M. 50, farmer--Linden Hall Elizabeth Lillian Lonella Annie E. John, 75, retired--Boalsburg Mary M. C.
In HUSTON Township:Blanche--Martha
In PATTON Township:James, 23, laborer--Benore
In PHILIPSBURG Borough:Sadie--5th St. Rachael William R., 42, miner--Front St. Mary I. Edward S. 19 Barbary C. Thomas 15 Sarah S. Jesse G. Henrietta Robert H. 3 Margaret A.
In RUSH Township:Alexander M., 26, plasterer--Philipsburg Alice R. Susan M. Elizabeth S. Harrison, 59, laborer--Philipsburg Christiana Harry 18 Susan E. John W. 9 Willis M., 33, laborer--Philipsburg Elizabeth A. Evans E. 9 Emma David 4 Herbert 1
In SPRING Township:Joseph, 66, farmer--Pleasant Gap Maria Bella Catharine Emma J. Eliza Birdie Charles T. 9 mos. William F., 23, laborer--Pleasant Gap Tillie M.