William M. Snyder, Bedford County, Pennsylvania gunsmith

Introduction: William M. Snyder is identified as a gunsmith in at least one census record and an obituary.

1849: Census records indicate that William M. Snyder was born circa 1850.The 1983 booklet "Gunsmiths and Gunmakers of Bedford and Somerset Counties Pennsylvania 1770-1900" indicates that the gunsmith William W. Snyder was born in 1852, which (based on census records) I believe is incorrect. An obituary of William M. Snyder that is included below gives an 1849 birth date and indicates he was the son of Philip and Cloy Snyder.

1860: In the following excerpt from the 1860 census, William is living in his Philip's household, and gives his mother's name as Chloe:

1870: In the 1870 census of West Providence Township, Bedford County 24-year-old Rebecca Strong is enumerated in the household of 63-year-old James Strong and 61-year-old Rosana Strong. This indicates that Rebecca was not yet married to William M. Snyder. The following excerpt from the 1870 census of the borough of Bloody Run (Everett) shows William living in the household of his father:

Circa 1873-1874: The 1900 census indicates that William M. Snyder had a son named Wilfred O. Snyder who, based on his age, was born circa 1874, and based on the census record was born in October of 1873. A Wilfred Snyder is buried at the Columbiana Cemetery in Columbiana County, Ohio, and his tombstone indicates he was born in 1874 and died in 1927. A website indicates this individual is a son of William and Rebecca Snyder and is buried in the Columbiana Cemetery in Columbiana County, Ohio. His tombstone gives his birth as 1874 and his death as 1927.

1877: William M. Snyder died in Everett in 1905. The following image from the Everett portion of the 1877 book "County Atlas of Bedford Pennsylvania" identifies the property of a "W. M. Snyder":

1878: The 1900 census indicates that William M. Snyder had a son named Alvin J. Snyder who, based on his age, was born circa 1879, and based on the census record was born in May of 1878. A web page reports that he died on January 1, 1902, and is buried in the Everett Cemetery in Bedford County, Pennsylvania.

1880: The 1900 census indicates that William M. Snyder had a son named Clyde F. who, based on his age, was born circa 1881, and based on the census record was born in November of 1880. A website reports that he died on July 3, 1938, and is buried at the Columbiana Cemetery in Columbiana County, Ohio.

1896: The December 2, 1896 marriage license application of Rosie Snyder and Joseph E. Bartholow of Everett, Pennsylvania lists her age as 20 years and lists her parents as William M. and Rebecca Snyder. The marriage took place on December 2, 1896.

1900: In the 1900 census of West Providence Township, Bedford County, William M. Snyder is listed as a 50-year-old Pennsylvania-born gunsmith. Also living in the household are 55-year-old Pennsylvania-born Rebecca Snyder, 26-year-old Wilfred O. Snyder, 21-year-old Alvin J. Snyder, and 19-year-old Clyde F. Snyder.

1905: The 2001 Whisker and Yantz book "Gunsmiths of Bedford, Fulton, Huntington, & Somerset Counties" indicates that the obituary of Monroe Township resident William M. Snyder that was published in the August 22, 1905 issue of the "Bedford Gazette" newspaper identifies Snyder as a gunsmith. I have not yet found that obituary, and suspect the referenced publication date is wrong. Here is an obituary that was published in the September 1, 1905 issue of the "Everett Press" newspaper about a William M. Snyder who died on August 26, 1905. Clearville is in Monroe Township, and is 8.1 miles south of Everett on present-day roads.

1905: I also found the following transcript of a news item from the Friday, September 1, 1905 issue of the "Bedford Gazette", "William Snyder of Riverside was found dead Saturday afternoon. It seems that around 3 o'clock he started out to the woods for some wood and not having returned at supper time a search was instituted and he was found dead. A coroner's jury was empaneled and rendered a verdict of death from heart failure. Deceased was a son of Philip Snyder. Funeral services were conducted by Rev. David Miller Tuesday morning and interment was made in the Everett Cemetery. Mr. Snyder was Postmaster at Earlston for a number of years. Earlston is just across the Raystown Branch of the Juniata River from Everett.

1905: The William M. Snyder who died August 26, 1905 is buried in the Everett Cemetery (40.01130886, -78.35916186). This is the only 1905 burial of a William Snyder that I could find in Bedford County.

1909: The following death certificate of the widow Rebecca Snyder indicates that she was the daughter of James and Rebecca Strong and died on June 28, 1909. The certificate was signed by her son-in-law Joseph Bartholow.

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