Biographical Sketches of Leading Citizens
Lawrence County Pennsylvania 1897
[p. 151] the leading merchant of the village of East Moravia, Taylor township, was born in Shenango township, two miles east of New Castle, Feb. 24, 1839, and was a son of Michael and Elizabeth (Cameron) Pitzer, and grandson of Michael Pitzer, Sr., who was born in the Fatherland, and followed the vocation of a farmer all his life, dying at the age of eighty- two in 1835 or 1840. Our subject's father was born in the State of Virginia in 1802, and fell into that last deep sleep that knows no waking in 1881, at his home in Dickinson Co., Tenn. He was what might be termed a born mechanic, for to whatever trade he turned his attention he mastered it easily, adapting himself to new and peculiar tools with wonderful rapidity; he was first a cooper by trade, but was equally well a shoe-maker, and could perform as good work at carpentry as the best of them. He became quite well-to-do in Pennsylvania, and in 1868 moved with most of his children and their families to Dickinson Co., Tenn., where he purchased 530 acres of land, intending to have all his children live around him. His wife, who died at the age of seventy-three, was a native of Pittsburg, and a daughter of Allan and Elizabeth Cameron. Allan Cameron, who was born in the bonny land of Scotland, served on the American side in the conflict for American Independence.
Cress was reared in Shenango township, and went to Austin School-house until he was ten vears of age, and thus acquired his education. He was apprenticed at an early age to the trade of a shoe-maker, but be did not long continue to follow the cobbler's art, for the work disagreed with his health. He then sought more rugged and out-door employments, and decided on boating on the canal; he bought a canal boat, the McFarland, which plied between Pittsburg and Erie, Pa., and Meadville, Ohio, and was engaged in carrying freight until the canal was closed to navigation. In 1867, he moved with his father and other members of the family to Dickinson Co., Tenn., and farmed for thirteen years near Charlotte, also operating a threshing-machine. In 1880, he returned to Lawrence County, and in the spring of 1881 built a store-room in East Moravia on the east side, where he carries as well-selected a stock of general merchandise as is to be found in any village in the county. His spare time is taken up with job work in repairing shoes. He is building up a large trade as well as lucrative, for he has good business qualifications, and his integrity goes unquestioned among his fellow-townsmen.
Mr. Pitzer was married in Shenango township, March 1, 1860, to Elizabeth Shaffer, daughter of Joseph and Eva (Pitzer) Shaffer, and she has borne him the following family of nine children: Joseph, a farmer of Washington township, who married Minnie West, and has fonr childrenóByron, Luther K., Melvin, and Cress; Albert, a car inspector, living near his father in Taylor township, who married Mary Jones, and has a family of threeóDavid, Esther, and Ralph; David; Emma; Frank, a conductor and brakeman on the P. & L. E. R. R.; John, who is employed at the tube works in Ellwood City; Samuel; Ida; and Doris. Mr. and Mrs. Pitzer are members and regular attendants of the M. E. Church. In politics, Mr. Pitzer is a firm Republican, and does all he can in a legitimate way to advance the interests of that party.
Biographical Sketches of Leading Citizens Lawrence County Pennsylvania
Biographical Publishing Company, Buffalo, N.Y., 1897
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Updated: 3 May 2001