Re: Mary Shoop's Civil War letter collection
Your Grandpa John was a younger brother to George who wrote the letters and Mary who received the letters. Your Granpa John's middle name was Henry and he died in 1917. Your grandma Armina's maiden name was Bigley. Her husband was her 1st cousin once removed. You may be old enough to remember Aunt Vine.
From The Valley Daily News, Tarentum Pa. Oct. 3, 1946
"Aunt Vine" Medskar
Returns to Springdale
For 96th Birthday Fete
by Frieda Dunt
It was a big time for Aunt "Vine" in Springdale last night.In town to spend her ninty-sixth birthday, Aunt "Vine"--Mrs. Lavina Medskar, oldest living member of Saint Marks Church--purposely made the trip to the lower valley town from the Lutheran Home for the Aged in Zelienople, so that she could observe her birthday with the members of the church. Mrs. Medskars father, the late George Remaley Shoop, donated the ground for the original edifice in 1867.
All dressed up in her "party best," "Aunt Vine" received guests at open house last evening in the home of her nephew, Earl Shoop, Hartrey street, Springdale. There was a mountainous birthday cake frosted with snow-white icing, twinkling candles and bouquets of bright flowers.
High-light for "Aunt Vine" was an unexpected call from Dr. E. V. Condron, pastor of a neighboring church-- Springdale United Presbyterian-- who sat at the little organ brought over from Saint Marks Sunday school and played a few of Mrs. Medskars favorite Hymns.Guests were served ice cream and cake.
But it was only an inkling of things to come--because the congregations gift to Mrs. Medskar was a purse of money sent to the Zelienople Home for a dinner which will be held for the near centenarian when she returned this week.
Mrs. Medskar is the last living grandchild of George Remaley, one of Springdales pioneers.Her childhood was spent in a brick homestead built by her father on a point between the old canal and the Allegheny river where the buildings housing the Duquesne Light company now stand.
Mrs. Medskar recalls going to church in Tarentum in her early childhood by canal boat.This method of transportation was so slow and wearisome that her father donated the land for the first Lutheran Church in Springdale.The building was used untill the present edifice was erected at the corner of Pittsburgh and Colfax streets.
One of a family of 12 children--six boys and six girls--Mrs. Medskar was a member of the first class to be confirmed in the church.In January of 1884, she became the bride of James Medskar and established a home with her husband just below Logans Ferry.Later they moved to the Verona hill district where they lived untill Mr. Medskars death in 1918.The couple had no children, but Mrs. Medskar has 21 nieces and nephews and six great neices and nephews.
My mother Joyce Poole Snowden also said that Aunt Vine was noted for making "Large" Cookies.She went to the Worlds Fair in the 1940's and lived with Aunt Lottie Belle Ramaley Thompson.
My Mom is older than you. I don't have information on you or your dad, Did you know William Wallace Shoop? Did you know Shoop's Tavern? Would you like me to email you?