Lonnie John Pierce: From Farm to City

Lonnie John Pierce 

BIRTH 5 JUN 1878  Rockport, Atchison, Missouri

DEATH 2 APR 1963  Squirrell Hill, Pennsylvania

Lonnie John Pierce was born on a steamy day in the hills of Missouri five miles south and east of Rockport, Acthison County, Missouri, to the parents John Franklin and Alice Roena (Johnson) Pierce, the 5th day of June in the year 1878.  He was the second son in a family of eight children.

He grew up on the farm of his parents during a time when life was prosperous for his family. His father being one of the first settlers in the area and a pioneer who homesteaded the land and cleared and improved the farm in which he was proud to call his home.

The family was born of hard work and yet were given all the conveniences of the times.  He attended the country schools of the county and when of age attended the University of Missouri at Columbia. The Pierce family was a promoter of education. It is said of Lonnie’s Grandfather, Samuel Hayes, that if there were no school, he  would build one or hire a teacher himself rather than let his children go without instruction.

Upon graduation from college, Lonnie left the farm and became employed at the  Glass Co.  in Pennsylvania. What took him there I do not know, but I do know many of the Pierce’s remained in the east, and perhaps he had family connections there.  He became the chief engineer of the American Window and Glass company at Pittsburgh, and participated in the development of the cylinder glass processes for drawing window glass. 

Machine drawn cylinder sheet was the first mechanical method for “drawing” window glass. Cylinders of glass 40 feet (12 m) high are drawn vertically from a circular tank. The glass is then annealed and cut into 7 to 10 foot (2 to 3 m) cylinders. These are cut length ways, reheated, and flattened.

This process was invented in the USA in 1903, and this type of glass was manufactured in the early 20th century. He retired from this profession in 1948.

In 1921 Lonnie married the daughter of PF Hughes, Catherine, at Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The couple made their final home at 66949 Wood Well St, Squirrel Hill, Pennsylvania. To the union was born two daughters, Barbara Mai and Sara (Sally) Pierce. 

Lonnie left this world on April 2, 1963 at his home leaving behind his wife and two daughters. Catherine died August 19, 1980 in Pennsylvania. They are buried at the Homewood Cemetery in Pittsburgh near their lifetime home.

At the time of his death only his sister, Charlotta Raubach  survived.

Barbara, born 14 Dec 1929, became the wife of Doctor Barrett Cabbage Walker,the son of Thomas and Clara Walker,  and they had two sons, Barrett Pierce Walker, and Phillip S. Walker.

Barrett married Margaret Carlson and they had a son and a daughter, Kiara and Evan.

Barbara and Dr. Barrett Walker we later divorced and he remarried Catherine McDonough.  Barbara died 5 Jan 1910.

Barbara Pierce
Sara Ann Pierce

Sarah Ann never married and died July 15, 1996.

 

Barrett P Walker

 

 

Catherine and Sara (Sally) Pierce
Lonnie with great nephew Billy Raubach
Barbara Walker

 

 

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2 Comments

  1. I cam across your website while looking for information on my Grandfather, Lonnie John Pierce. I’m amazed at the family history you’ve documented – more than I know about my Grandfather. As a small boy, I knew him to be kind and supportive. I recall him asking if I wanted a whistle. I said I did, but where would he get it? Lonnie proceeded to cut a small branch off a tree with his pocket knife, skin the bark off undamaged, cut a chamber in the wood, and reinsert the bark. The result was a fine whistle. He was an engineer by profession, but had the woodworking skill of a boy growing up on a farm.

    I’d love to share photos with you. You have some I don’t have, and can send quality scans of the several photos in my collection.

    1. Barrett…oh my I’m delighted to hear from you!! I have searched for you on FB to no avail. Thank you for your sharing and contacting me. YES I would love to share photos with you. Aunt Carol is still alive and she remembers writing letters to your mother as a child. I’ll bet we have a lot we could learn from each other! my email is silverwingsusa@gmail.com …send me an email and I can give you an invite to my tree on ancestry where you can save any pictures you want. I don’t have them all on there but I’m working on it. I want family to have access to any of it.

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