Yesterday I celebrated the 100th anniversary of my great-grandmother’s arrival to the U.S. Unfortunately, I did not include a photo of her, Elizabeth Miller Pater, with the post. Even though she is the only great-grandparent who was alive during my lifetime, I have only one photo of her. As you can see below, it is not in the best condition. She is the little lady in the center of the photograph, seated third from the left. We have no idea who the other individulas are, though the woman to the right of her resembles Elizabeth’s husband’s sister.
My mother remembers seeing a beautiful photo of Elizabeth as a young woman, but we do not know what happened to it after Elizabeth’s death in 1972. That side of my family has been a bit of a mystery, so I’d like to post some names in an attempt to perhaps find some cousins (and cousins with photos would be a bonus!).
Elizabeth Miller married Louis Pater in 1910. They had five sons: Henry, Walter, Louis, Victor, and Eugene. All of the sons were born in either Langhorne, PA, or Philadelphia. Most were involved in the same trade as their parents – working in textile factories in Philadelphia.
Henry, the oldest, was my grandfather. Two of the sons died young from tuberculosis – Louis in 1940 at the age of 24, and Victor in 1951 at the age of 32. Neither Louis nor Victor had any children.
Walter was born on 08 July 1913 and died in April 1975. At some point during his life, he changed his surname (most likely not legally as one would today) from Pater to Miller, his mother’s maiden name. This is the name under which his death is registered; however, it is not clear if he used Miller for marriage or as the surname for his children. Walter was married at least three times, possibly to a Jean and two women named Helen. He has two known children: Barbara Patsy (estimated birth year 1938-1940) and Louis (estimated birth year 1941-1943).
Eugene was born on 19 July 1920 and died in January 1979. It is not known when he was married or to whom, but he had at least three children: Gloria Jean (estimated birth year 1945), Larry (Lawrence? Laurence?), and Pauline (who was called Polly). Larry and Polly were younger than Gloria Jean.
Because of the surname change to the more common name of Miller, and because of the female children, I have not had success in tracing these cousins. If there are any Pater or Miller descendents from these individuals, I would love to hear from you! For more information on the Pater family’s ancestry, as well as a photograph of Louis Pater (the husband of Elizabeth) and their oldest son, Henry, see the Pater Family Page.