NameMary Theresa Miller
BirthJan 3, 1894, R.D., Dysart, Pa.
DeathOct 12, 2000, Ebensburg, Pa.
BurialSt. Michael's Church Cemetery, Loretto, Pa.
FatherAugustine Miller (1856-1942)
1Faber Patrick Eckenrode
BirthMar 20, 1893, Cambria County, Pa.
DeathMar 17, 1936, Cambria County, Pa.
FatherMichael Dan Eckenrode (1853-1898)
MotherMargaret Josephine Eckenrode (1855-)
ChildrenCatherine (1914-1959)
 Agnes (1917-1918)
 Arthur Ignatius
 Bernard C. (1930-1994)
 Adrian F. (1932-1995)
 Clyde F.
 Thelma Ann
 Merle A.
BirthOct 7, 1890, Carrolltown, Pa.
DeathAug 17, 1970, Johnstown, Pa.
BurialSt. Benedict's Church Cemetery, Carrolltown, Pa.
FatherJoseph Farabaugh (1854-1947)
MotherAnna Mary Conrad (1859-1906)
MarriageJun 3, 1952, St. Michael's Church, Loretto, Pa.
Notes for Mary Theresa Miller
Mary, who had twelve children by a previous marriage, lived in Loretto, Pa.
Notes for Englebert Joseph (Spouse 2)
Englebert was raised in Carroll Township, Cambria County, Pa. He first worked as a lumberman in the Twin Rocks area, where he drove team, and then worked his father's farm until his marriage in 1910. He and brother Leo worked on a farm near Carrolltown for a year, then sold it. Englebert was then a conductor and brakeman on the Cambria and Indiana Railroad for several months before a two year stint as conductor on the old Northern Cambria street car line. He bought his father's farm in 1918 and operated it, together with a wagon coal mine, for five years, before selling it to a Peter Livarchik. As a farmhand, Englebert was adept at breaking in wild colts.

Englebert then moved to Loretto, where he worked on the Conrad farm a year, and then bought the tract. He operated a dairy farm there until his election to the State House of Representatives in 1952. His sons Arthur and Clyde took over the operation. As an assemblyman, he chaired the Agricultural Committee and sat on the Committee on Counties, Townships and Boroughs, as well as a special agricultural legislation committee. Locally, Englebert was active in a host of farming organizations, such as the Banner Grange, the Cambria County Farm Bureau Cooperative, the Interstate Milk Producers Cooperative, the Artificial Breeding Association, the Dairy Herd Improvement Association, and he was also a charter member of the Cambria County Agricultural Extension organization. Englebert served as Assemblyman for twelve years. In later life, he was Mayor of Loretto for four years, which to him was "three years too many." He also was a talented carpenter and built an altar for St. Michael's Church, Loretto.

Englebert’s election to the Assembly in November of 1952 was easily won. A few months prior he married Mary (Miller) Eckenrode. The voting district was the county north of Johnstown. Between the two of them there were 24 children, and they had married into several of the wildly prolific families in the area: Benders, Hoovers, Scanlans, Conrads and Noels. Other than attending a handful of local political functions, Englebert probably did nothing to campaign. They were all Democrats and he just needed relatives from these large families to show up on election day.

From newspaper accounts covering Englebert’s years in the Assembly, there are a few things that are striking: 1) he was very protective of poor farmers and was successful in keeping the sale of milk fixed at a high price to benefit them; 2) he really hated taxes and government spending; 3) he was frustrated by failed attempts to get funding for local volunteer fire departments; 4) he won all of his elections easily including victories over his Republican cousin, Earl Farabaugh; and 5) he once co-sponsored a bill that sought to include sodomy in the definition of first degree murder. He often sided with other Congressman from working class backgrounds, such as the coal miner Louis Rovansek, and Philip Lopresti of Johnstown, who served several terms with him.

Farm Issues.
In his first term, Englebert co-sponsored a bill requiring testing of cattle and goats for brucellosis. Over the years he sponsored bills that required the bonding of all dealers in farm produce and the licensing of new poultry technicians by the Dept. of Agriculture. The latter bill addressed a holdup on testing chickens for solmanella because of a requirement that it only be done by veterinarians; the bill created a class of technicians who could perform the testing and more readily stop the spread of the disease. Another bill sought to have the Agriculture Department regulate the resigistration, ingredients, labelling and inspection of commercial grain feeds. In 1960, Englebert was deeply involved in voting down a Senate version of a billboard law that sought to prohibit landowners from erecting signs within 660 feet of any highway on the federal interstate system, a law that would qualify Pennsylvania for millions in federal bonus income. A bipartisan voting block of rural legislators opposed it, despite some exemptions for sides of buildings and farmland advertising. “This is just a foot in the door for the state to control the land some farmer is trying to scratch a living out of,” said Farabaugh. A form of the bill, however, subsequently passed. In 1959, Englebert continued his efforts to cede more power to the state Department of Agriculture, by co-sponsoring a bipartisan bill that would require the Department’s approval of any regulations affecting farm labor. He was one of 15 members chosen for the newly formed Democratic Farm Advisory Board in 1960.

Milk. In 1962, Englebert objected to a passed resolution that required the extraction of any radioactive fallout from Russia on pasture lands before milk sales, on the basis that it would create negative publicity and an unwarranted burden on the milk-producing industry. The following year, Englebert co-sponsored a bill that regulated how milk sales on farms were to be conducted to consumers. Pa. already had a Milk Control Board that fixed the price of milk to help dairy farmers survive the Great Depression. But the price fixing came under fire and Englebert was very involved in defending it. In May of 1964, a movement to eliminate the Board was defeated. Proponents thought the licensing fees were driving up the price of milk, which was perceived to be much lower in Ohio. It also allowed for high price fixing among dealers to eliminate competition. Englebert, who was closely involved with the Board and related marketing organizations, charged that the elimination would “upset the whole applecart,” and the measure was soundly defeated. Even after he left office, in 1965, he remained involved in the milk pricing controversies and belonged to a committee appointed by the legislature that recommended they be retained. The Milk Control Board survived all of these challenges.

No New Taxes. In 1959, Englebert voted against, and helped defeat in a dramatic post-midnight session, a bill on the House floor that proposed a sales tax increase from 3 to 3.5 per cent. He was part of a 17 vote insurgent Democratic bloc that sided with Republicans on the opposition. An increased sales tax won out eventually. In 1962, after Pennsylvania had a 4% sales tax, Englebert co-sponsored a bill to exclude “the propagation of domestic mink in captivity,” which probably was intended to protect such as farm that was in operation Allegheny Township. He also got involved in a controversy over a bill to initiate a $3000 expense account for each member of Congress. Englebert urged them to search their consciences to defeat the bill, because of the increased tax burden to fund it and that since they were only in session 27 days a year the existing salary was adequate to cover expenses. He was accused of being a “headline hunter,” but a Republican representative from Somerset spoke in defense of Englebert’s criticisms. The House passed the measure, which included increased pensions along with the new expense accounts. Englebert in leading the failed opposition, warned the legislators: “I think it’s about time the members in both houses start thinking of the people they represent. . .and not thinking simply of financial gains. . . we’re going to call upon a lot of people to pay more taxes who are not making a good living.” The press noted that Englebert was heckled with inaudible comments during his speech. In 1961, Englebert co-sponsored a bill to redistribute income from gas taxes to more favorably to rural areas.

Spending Curbs. In 1964, Englebert was ridiculed in an editorial when it was reported that he was one of only 3 who cast votes against a long-standing $300 budget item for road maintenance on the Cornplanter Indian Reservation. The columnist considered the objection frivolous, in light of the millions involved in other appropriation issues. Englebert was often in the minority in voting against pay raises. He failed to defeat a bill to increase the salaries of judges, noting that the $5k increase represented more than many Pennsylvanians make in a year. He also voted successfully against across-the-board pay raises for county officials. The second attempt to hike various state salaries (up to 25%) failed in the House by a vote of 75-105, and Englebert was an opposition leader. “This is just another of those unreasonable things we are asked to do at the expense of the taxpayers,” he told the press. He co-sponsored a bill to eliminate a judgeship in Fayette County. On the other hand, he probably had constituants in mind when he co-sponsored a bill to allow for discretionary pay raises for state mine, electrical and first aid inspectors that had been fixed by law. Finally, in March of 1964, Englebert was among the House members to successfully vote down an unemployment compensation bill proposed by the governor.

Volunteer Fire Companies. When Englebert spotted a recurring budget item for Harrisburg’s volunteer fire company, he went on a mission to get money for the departments back home. Englebert sponsored a bill to give Cresson firemen $1000 for protection of the local sanatorium, which passed both Houses, but was vetoed by Democratic Gov. George Leader. As an additional slight, Leader at the same time approved a $5000 a year measure for Harrisburg firemen. Englebert kept trying. In 1963, he sought $1000 in yearly appropriations for the Cresson and Ebensburg volunteer fire companies, again arguing that they were entitled to the same consideration as the Harrisburg department. This time, House Republicans voted it down. He did, however, co-sponsor a bill to fund $225,000 for the Ebensburg sewage treatment plant, which passed both houses unanimously.

Earl Farabaugh. One of Englebert’s challengers over the years was Republican Earl Farabaugh, reported to be no relation. They were, in fact, second cousins. Earl was a former coal miner who lived in Carrolltown. He lost at least three bids for Assembly. In 1956, all three Democrats won re-election in the House (Engelbert led with 32,669; with Rovansek getting 31,521 and Lopresti getting 31,323. The closest of the three Republican challengers was Earl Farabaugh, who pulled in 26,385 votes.

The Failed Turnpike Extension. If you’ve ever been stuck behind a truck or at one of the many traffic lights trying to get to Pittsburgh on Route 22, know that Englebert tried to change this in 1955. He co-sponsored an unsuccessful bill to create a Turnpike extension at Somerset that would run through Cambria and other counties, in a northwesterly route that neared Pittsburgh and ended in Erie.

Taking Sodomy Seriously. Also in 1955, Englebert co-sponsored a bill that “[i]ncluded sodomy in the definition of first degree murder.” It did not pass.

JFK. In August of 1960, Englebert was among 30 Democrats chosen to meet with John F. Kennedy in Harrisburg in advance of his presidential campaign tour there. (Kennedy in fact packed the War Memorial in Johnstown during the campaign that Fall). In the November elections, all four of the House Democrats from Cambria’s 22nd District were re-elected, including Englebert. The Dems retained control of the House and also took control of the state Senate for the first time in 22 years.

Dust Up With a Philadelphia Assemblyman.
The late 1959 general appropriations bill attempting to budget a $1.4 billion proposal required unusually long legislative sessions, and Englebert was quoted as threatening to bring in House members forcibly to participate, an option that hadn’t been implemented since 1921. He made the statement near the end of a nine hour session in which the attendance of the House continually dwindled after a Wednesday luncheon recess. “It touched off a debate at first humorous but gradually bitter, winding up with a complaint by a Philadelphia Democrat that the leadership was obstinate and stubborn in not recessing until Monday.”

Englebert’s successor in the Assembly was the respected Master Farmer Paul J. Yahner, husband to Englebert’s niece. Paul served from 1964 to 1980.
Last Modified Nov 4, 2015Created Sep 1, 2022 using Reunion for Macintosh