the Poorhouse Story

Postcard for House of Employment (Poor House) Somerset Co., Pa. 


"The Somerset county, PA courthouse has a huge book that is entitled  "Almshouse"  and it contains quite detailed original records of the residents from 1900 forward. Each resident has a line and there are a lot of columns of information. I didn't record anything from the book because the person I was looking for was there in 1860. The courthouse currently has a grant to microfilm its old records and this book is in the microfilm offices, not in the courthouse itself. I found out about the book purely by chance - I told one of the office workers who I was looking for and she very kindly said she had an idea and went looking for the records upstairs somewhere and then showed me the book.

Unfortunately, I could find no records prior to 1900. Apparently there had been a fire and lots of records were destroyed years ago. If you can find someone who lives in Somerset, they might be able to access that book and provide some information. Otherwise, sometime in the future it should be on microfilm."
     Barbara Obaker


the Poorhouse Story

"I am aware that there was also a Poor House, later known as the Somerset Co. Home, and later still Somerset State Hospital. I worked there for several years. I have no photos of the old county home, but am aware of a pauper's cemetery behind one building. The grounds have now been converted to a State Prison so I'm sure the cemetery is off limits to outsiders."
      Linda Marker 

the Poorhouse Story

Poorhouse inmate list from Somerset County 1860 Census

(See also Local Notes above.)

the Poorhouse Story

the Poorhouse Story

We are hoping to build this base of information about the poorhouse in SOMERSET county through the helpful participation of readers. All are requested to submit items of interest by sending e-mail to The Poorhouse Lady.

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