Monday, July 27, 2009

Monday Madness--Elva M. McGoey

My “madness” with this blog is that I didn’t have a tombstone photo for Elva. My original thought was to make this a Tombstone Tuesday. So, I am mad at myself. When I was in Clearfield, Pennsylvania a few weeks ago, time did not permit me to find Calvary Cemetery and take photos of the remaining McGoey markers that I am missing—Elva being one of them.

The McGoey’s are not my biological line. They belong to my “Michigan” cousins--the sons and daughters of my aunt, Barbara Ann McGoey Hughes. Elva would be their maternal grandaunt.

Elva M. McGoey was the first child born to Michael Joseph McGoey and Clara Green McGoey, in September 1891, Clearfield, Clearfield County, Pennsylvania.1

Elva never married and unfortunately, I have, to date, no photos of her. In fact, until several years ago, when I joined, I knew nothing about her. She seemed lost to the ages. has copies of many decades of the Clearfield Progress, the local newspaper, and I was able to find a few pieces of information about Elva.

She was a bookkeeper for the Leitzinger Brothers Department Store in Clearfield for 32 years from 1909 until her death in 1941. In honor of her devoted service, the store closed until 10:30 a.m. the morning of her funeral.2

While researching Leitzinger’s, I found that they had an unusual system for collecting the money from their customers. They utilized what was called the electric car system. When the sales person collected the money from the customer, it was sent along with a bill on a little trolley car up to the cashier department located on a floor above. The cashier would then process the receipt and any money due back and send it back to the cashier. This system was replaced in 1951’s with a pneumatic tube system that ran throughout the store.3 Elva, as a bookkeeper, would have been involved with the electric car system of money collection.

She was a life long member of the St. Francis Roman Catholic Church in Clearfield where her funeral services took place. Elva predeceased both of her parents. She died on September 7, 1941 and was laid to rest in Calvary Cemetery, Clearfield, Pennsylvania on September 10, 1941.4


1. 1900 Pennsylvania Federal Census, Clearfield County, Clearfield.
ED 64, Sheet 27, Line 95.

2. “The Clearfield Progress,” Clearfield, Pennsylvania, Tuesday Evening, September 9, 1941, page 3.

3. Julie Rae Rickard, "Images of America Clearfield County," Arcadia Publishing, Charleston, South Carolina, 2003, page 111.

4. “The Clearfield Progress”, Clearfield, Pennsylvania, Monday Evening, September 8, 1941, page 10.


  1. I clicked on a picture, I clicked on a picture. Good job Linda.
    I see that you have also done your footnotes. Pat on the back for that too. You are doing way better than me at that.

  2. Thanks so much for posting this; it is fascinating. My grandfather is "John O." McGoey, mentioned in Elva's obit above.

    I plan to come back to visit your blog when I have a bit more time. Here's an invite to visit mine. :-)