Edward P. Mayer (1863-1928) – My 2nd Great Grandfather

GG Grandfather Edward P. Mayer (1863 – 1928)

In this type of post, I try to cobble together the pieces of information I’ve found on each ancestor.

My great-great-grandfather Edward Philip Mayer was born in Scranton, PA, in December 1863, and he was one of seven children. His father, Gottlieb Mayer (b.1834), was a German immigrant, but the family of his mother, Susan Cunningham (b.1839),  goes back for many generations in the U.S. According to the 1880 census, Edward was an apprentice to a tinsmith when he was 16 years old. He appears to have grown up mostly on Pittston Ave. 

1017 Stafford Ave. The address where my 2nd great grandfather and his family lived for many years.

In 1884, Edward married Clara Frech, a daughter of German immigrants. They had eight children, six of whom survived into adulthood. Edward Mayer and his family lived for many years at 1017 Stafford Ave.


Edward worked as a carpet layer at G.W. Watkins furniture and draperies, a store located at 203 Jefferson Ave in Scranton. The store’s original location was at the corner of Lackawanna & Washington Aves, but that store was destroyed in a fire in 1910. Newspaper articles praised the “pluck” of the store’s owner, Mr. Watkins, who wasted no time in setting up a new location on Jefferson Ave after the fire.

In the news

In 1913, Edward Mayer was a passenger in an auto accident that seriously injured the manager of the furniture store, William Dunstone, when their car collided with a Northern Electric street car. At first, the newspapers reported that Mr. Dunstone had no hope of surviving the accident, actually subtitling an article “Dunstone Will Die.” Thankfully, Mr. Dunstone proved them wrong and recovered from his injuries, per followup news articles. You can see the original article from the Scranton Republican here: Four Hurt When Car Hits Auto.

Census-based info

In 1920, Edward and his son Lawrence were boarders at the home of a widow and her son (the Davey family) at 615 Prospect Ave in Scranton. Edward was 56 and Lawrence was 24. Edward was working in a store as an upholsterer, and Lawrence was a clerk in a store. Interestingly, Edward’s father Gottlieb was an upholsterer for the DL&W Railroad.

East Locust Street House in Scranton
East Locust Street, where my 2nd great grandfather lived in 1928.

Edward Mayer died on May 25, 1928 at age 64 in the Scranton State Hospital. At that time, he was living at 1016 E. Locust St., per his death certificate. The cause of death was listed as myocardial decomposition, a type of heart failure. He’s interred at the Dunmore Cemetery in Dunmore, PA.

Spouse: Clara Frech
Mary A. Mayer 1886–1909
Clara M. Mayer 1888–1937
Edward Francis Mayer 1890–1922
Lawrence John Mayer 1896–1963
Regina Mayer 1899–1959
Lena Mayer 1902–1922

Relationship chart:

  1. Edward Philip Mayer (1863 – 1928)
    2nd great-grandfather
  2. Lawrence J Mayer (1898 – 1963)
    son of Edward Philip Mayer
  3. My grandmother
  4. My mother
  5. Me