Munshower Family and My Roots
This page was last updated 05/15/03
The Munshower (Mundshower, Moonshower, Munshaw, Mondschauer) family in the United States and Canada all started with Johannes Mondschauer, it is believed, who immigrated to the United States on the "Loyal Judith" in 1743. He landed in Philadelphia and took the oath of allegiance in Philadelphia at that time. Some stories I found state three of his sons Nicholas, Jacob and Henry accompanied him on the trip. This appears to be correct because of their birth dates being 1728, 1734 and 1740. I have not found who Johannes married but have not given up yet either.
Nicholas is who I descend from. He married (1) Irene and
(2) Margaret Catherine and had the following children John, Catherine and Margaret. John married
Catherine Baker and had 11 children that I have found. William H.
Munshower is my Great Great Grandfather who married Hannah Kunkle daughter of
Johannes John and Anna Marie (Steiner) Kunkle. William
and Hannah had seven children including my Great Grandfather Harrison H.
Munshower. Harrison married Catherine Switzer daughter of Peter and
Susannah (Crick) Switzer of Clarion County, Pennsylvania. Harrison's brother
John married Catherine's sister Sarah. Harrison and Catherine had ten
children including my Grandfather Harry Munshower who married Dora Dorothy
Henrietta Clarissa Muir daughter of David and Sarah (Mikesell) Muir. That
brings me to my Mom and Dad, Ernest Sylvester and Beatrice Winona Conrad
We lived in Seward, Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania most of our lives. I do know they lived in Homer City, where Mom was raised, after they married. I have been told by my Aunt Ellabelle that Mom and Dad met in Homer City. She (Aunt Ellabelle) lived there with her first husband and 3 sons. Dad lived with them and Mom's best friend Theda Belle lived across the street and that is how they met. Aunt Margaret states Mom and Grandma Conrad were doing dishes one day and Mom said she was getting married the next day. I know Mom and Dad lived on the Cramer farm in Cramer and in a house in Hutchison Hollow off of Route 22 near Clymer and in Homer City.
When I was very young we lived in the Murryhill part of Seward. Seward only has about 500 people but happens to have different sections. Murryhill, East Seward, below the tracks and above the tracks. I guess what determined where you lived was what church you attended. The Catholic church was above the tracks and the Presbyterian and Methodist were below the tracks (as in railroad).
I don't remember when Dad started to build the home we lived in, growing up, but do remember living in what they called the "foundation" or basement while they finished the upstairs. We were not wealthy but sure had a great life. Mom was always involved with our elementary class at school. At that time there was a school house in Seward. I think the four of us, Shirley, Judy, Jim and I all had the same teachers. My teachers were Miss Nippes, Mrs. Drenner 2nd and 3rd, Miss Igo, Miss Hall, and Mrs. Jones.
Dad worked for Pennsylvania Electric in Robindale, just across the swinging bridge from Seward. He would walk to and from work and often we would meet him on the Seward side of the bridge. This is also where we did most of our sled riding in the winter. I do not remember Dad ever having worked anywhere else.
Dad developed Walkers Chorea, a central nervous system condition, and had to go on disability in early 1964. This is the same year Mom died. She had an aortic aneurysm that ruptured, she died September 24, 1964.
I was the first to leave home. I married Deborah Kokoruda in September 1966. I went into the US Army in February 1967 and in 1968 was station in Vicenza, Italy. Deb joined me in the fall of that year. Heather Dawn was born October 31, 1969 in the Army Hospital in Vicenza and in 1970 we returned to the States and I finished my time in the service in Ft. Dix NJ. Shirley married Carm Guaetta and they have Stacie Marie and Chad Michael. Stacie is married to David Shaffer and Chad married Jane Forte. Stacie and Dave became parents to Alyssa Marie Shaffer in November 2001. Judy married Douglas McLaughlin and she has Leslie Conrad Munshower and BeckyJo. Les is married to Tobi Hedberg and they have Lincoln Conrad, Tessa Claire (named after me) and Logan Thomas. Jim married Charlotte Gail Hall and has one daughter Melissa Gail. Charlotte passed away April 17, 1991 in Ft. Stewart Georgia. Jim remarried Roberta King. Roberta brought 4 children into the family. Ed, Ray, Bob and Marydee are her children by her first marriage. Roberta and Jim now have 5 grandchildren Elizabeth and Nathan are the children of Ed and Patty and Bob and his wife Tina have Travis, Nicole and in 2002 Tina gave birth to Luke Robert. Marydee is married to Frank Oxen and they are expecting a baby in May 2003.
In 1976 I left Pennsylvania and moved to Ft. Lauderdale
Florida where I remained until 1982 when I relocated to Houston, Tx, where I am
currently. In 1990 I and 4 friends started Spectrum Review Services, Inc.,
a medical cost containment company. In 1991 I left my job and came on full
time with SRS where I am now Chief Operations Officer.
I guess another hobby is playing the slot machine. We enjoy Reno, Nevada to do our gambling. We liked Reno so much we had purchased a condo in Reno on the Truckee River. Three years later 2002 we purchased a home there and sold the condo in 5 housr. I love to sit on the deck and watch the Canadian Geese that nest there.
The year 2001 was a year of blessings. Our family has grown larger. In May, cousin Adam Storey brought Amanda to our family when they were wed, this was my first trip to PA that year. Just a few days after Adam and Amanda were married Bob and Tina Gawel gave birth to Nicole. Grandma and Grandpa Munshower (Jim & Roberta) are thrilled. In June Marydee married Frank Oxen III, the first wedding of the year for Jim and Roberta. August brought the wedding of Melissa and Brad Payne, number 2 wedding for Jim and Roberta. Then in October Ray and Jody were married and this makes number 3 wedding for Jim and Roberta. They are very happy to see the year 2001 come to an end. (LOL)
Ernie became Grandpa December 12 when Anthony Paul Thurber, Jr. was born at 12:11am. Anthony is the son of Heather and her husband Tony. He weighted in at 9 pounds 5.8 ounces and was 21 1/2 inches long. Sister Shirley beat me though she and Carm became Grandparents in November when Alyssa Marie Shaffer was born to Stacie and Dave. After I saw Anthony Jr., I called Shirley and said "Mine is cuter than yours". Her comment was "How much do you want to bet". I'm a gambler but we did not bet. They are both adorable and will be much loved by the whole family.
In January 2003 I ventured to Pennsylvania again. My cousin Diane had the first wedding in her family. Diane's son Nicholas married on January 18th. He and Amy were married just south of Erie. I don't think I need to say that was a real trip for me. When I landed in Pittsburgh the weather was ok, cold windy but only a little bit of snow. About half way to Erie I hit snow and it did not stop for 3 days. Thanks Nick and Amy, I slid all around Edenburg. I was very happy to be with them when they became husband and wife and hope to see them soon in Houston.
I and my family do wish all those who were affected by the September 11th terrorist attack and those who we have lost during the conflict in the middle east recently, our deepest sympathy. We as Americans will standby each other and do our best to see that this type of unprovoked attack never happens again on our soil.
This Page was last updated: 05/15/2003