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Washington County "Little Washington" Pennsylvania
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Newspapers of McDONALD, PA
and Surrounding areas

BIOGRAPHIES - Letter H, 1900s

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    Enhance your genealogy research about ancestors from McDonald, Washington County PA with newspaper articles, birth, death, marriage, notices, obituaries often with cemeteries noted, probate, deed, surname, family trees or family histories, reunions and other information.


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February 1, 1924

McDonald PA Record

Mrs. Anna Catherine HESS Biography

In Hesse Cassel, Germany, October 8, 1847, Mrs. Anna Catherine WAGNER HESS was born. She came to America with her parents, landing in New York City on July 4, 1850, and then came to Etna, Allegheny county, Pa., where she enjoyed a happy and popular girlhood. She recalls with a big smile the many dances and the fun of the parties of long ago. When asked by a well-meaning friend if she was sorry she had danced so much, she replied, “Indeed no, I’d still enjoy a good dance.”

When aged eighteen, August 23, 1865, she was united in marriage with Henry HESS, a member of Co. D, 155th infantry, Pennsylvania Volunteers. He served three years in the Civil war and died November 17, 1901.

Mr. and Mrs. HESS came to Midway May 2, 1871, to the home she now occupies. When she first came some kind neighbor presented her with a hen and to this day she has a flock of chickens. Always, so long as she was able, Mrs. HESS planted and cultivated a wonderful truck garden, selling hundreds of dollars worth of tomatoes and cabbage plants as well as all kinds of cultivated berries and fruits.

Mrs. HESS lives happily and contented in her home on North avenue. Her only companions are her two cats, “Piper” and “Bessie”, and her big white dog, “Bismarck.” She reads her German newspaper, “Volksblatt und Freiheits-Freund,” with as keen an interest as she did when she first began to read it sixty-four years ago.

She has been a constant reader of the “McDonald Record” ever since it was first published.

Although the last surviving member of her family—she had two half sisters and one half brother, who have long since passed on—she is a living example of Carlyle when he said, “Wondrous is the strength of cheerfulness.”

Mrs. HESS has been a life-long member of the United Presbyterian church of Etna and is a lover of truth. She reads only such things as tell the solemn truth—one reason why she has so long “clung to the Record.” She said, “I like only those people who stick to their promise regardless of how great or small—always I have tried to keep any promise regardless of the cost to myself.”

When speaking of the past of Midway, Mrs. HESS said the greatest difference she saw was that the people were far more sociable when they were fewer. Mrs. HESS has as her motto of life, “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.” She has a most remarkable memory, recalling poems she learned when only six years old, and too, a wonderful sense of humor. She reads Mark TWAIN’s works with real enjoyment, relating many of the clever little incidents for which Mark is truly famous.

Mrs. HESS has many friends and neighbors who have long known and enjoyed her wise, witty and truly entertaining stories. She has calmly smoked her pipe for more than thirty-two years, loved and cared for her pets, planted and tended her garden and now in the afternoon of her life she lives as Sam Walter FOSS tells in Mrs. HESS’s favorite poem: *cut for brevity






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     These newspaper items were researched and typed by Victoria Hospodar Valentine for the over the course of 5 years.  Vicki had submitted hundreds of articles to the mailing list and other Lists.

     Her work is presented here in the McDonald, PA section of this website.  Please use the links to navigate or use on-site search engines to locate articles.  


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All newspaper items posted with permission of the Observer-Reporter Oct. 13, 2005.

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(c) Judith Ann Florian
Copyright Notice - Data / info. for individuals and surnames may be reproduced for personal family histories only, but not for any commercial use or sale. Please give credit to Judith Florian and Catherine L. Caldwell for locating newspaper items and original documents. You may use J. Florian's research conclusions if credit is given. No other data or images may be reproduced without permission. © August 2005-present, Judith Florian, Copyright All rights reserved.

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