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History of York County Pennsylvania From the Earliest Time to the Present online

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Sunday-school of twenty-five pupils was
started in 1851, with Daniel Diehl as super-
intendent. The present church was built in
1877, with a fund bequeathed to the congre-
gation by the will of Rev. Martin Lohr, who
labored long and faithfully for the spiritual
interest of the congregation, and contributed
liberally to the support of the church in gen-
eral. A Sunday-school is connected with
the church, and is superintended by J. C.
Hoffman. Rev. Nicholas is pastor.

Mennonite Church. — Near the north end
of Abbottstown Street, Hanover, stands the
neat, plain and comfortable Mennonite
Church, which, was built in 1881, at a cost
of $2,500. It is connected with Bair's Meet;,
ing House in Heidelberg Township, and Hos-
tetter's Meeting House in Adams Ctttvnty, all
the members who worship in three houses
mentioned, form a congregation of about 100
families. Samuel Myers, Martin Whistler
and Jacob Hostetter, Sr. , are the present
ministers. The services are conducted i)a
English and German. The committee-, who-
superintended the building of the Hanover-
Church were David Forry, Samuel Witmer
and tlacob Fry. The present elders are
Samuel Grove, and Samuel Forry. This re-
ligious denomination being plain and uQoe,-
tentatious, does not have a dedicator}' serf*
ice. When a house of worship is completecS
it is at once used. The first services in no;
way differ froin the other regular seiwices.
In 1883 a Sunday-school was organized
and has since then been regularly held.


This beautifully located- cemetery was orig'^
inated through the efforts of L. F. Melshei-


mer, J. -T. Naille and D. Q. Albright, at '
a meeting held December, 20, 1858, and a
charter was received early the following
year. The land, fifteen acres, was purchased
of Adam Forney for S2, 146. It lies on the
sammit of a hill, a short distance south of
'town, with a commanding view of the sur-
rounding country. It was laid out in lots
and winding walks, during February, 1859,
by Joseph S. Gitt. The dedicatory services
occurred on June 2, 1859. The officiating
clergymen were Revs, B. H. Nadal, M. J.
Alleman and Mai'tin Lohr. Alfred E. Lewis
wrote a hymn which was sung at the time of
dedication. Mount Olivet Cemetery is a beauti-
ful testimony of the affectionate remembrance
which the citizens of Hanover hold for the
friends who have departed this life. Many
of the lots are enclosed with iron railing and
granite curbing, and adorned with choice
flowers. The grounds are ornamented with
trees and shrubbery, which make the place
an attractive resort. There are a large
number of handsome monuments of granite
and marble worthy of admiration as works
of art. The remains of Col. Richard McAl-
lister, the founder of Hanover, repose in this
delightfiil spot, and the graves of himself
and family are taken care of by the borough
authorities. An iron octagonal pavilion, of
'tasteful design, is a central figure of the
Cemetery. This cost $600. and was paid for
with money raised at a festival during the
year 1872, by the ladies of Hanover. The
first board of directors was composed of Dan-
iel Q. Albright, president; L. F. Melsheimer,
secretary; Horatio W. Emmert, treasurer;
William Wirt. J. J. Naille, Harry Kurtz. F.
M. Baughman. George W. Welsh and Joseph
Slagle. Two large swinging iron gates for
carriages, and two smaller ones for footmen,
similar to those at the National Cemetery at
Gettysburg, were placed at the entrance in
the year 1877, at a cost of $600, including
granite blocks for posts. The board of
•directors in 1885 is as follows: Levi H.
Eckert, president; George N. Forney, secre-
tary and treasurer; Henry A. Young, Will-
iam Anthony, William F. Stair, Dr. H. Alle-
man, Philip S. Bowman, Carl Erdman and
Washington Bair. George Zinn for many
years was superintendent; at his death his
son, John Zinn, the present superintendent,
succeeded him.


The first schools in the vicinity were held
in connection with the churches, and taught
under the superintendence of the minister.
The first schoolhouse in the town of Hanover

was built by the Reformed congregation in
1777, on York Street, where it still stands,
and owned by Peter Flickinger. This school
was not strictly sectarian. In 1810 it was
discontinued, and the building was sold in
1825. During later days John McLaugh-
lin, taught a private school for many years,
and as early as 1816, his school was consid-
ered an old established institution. He
taught in a log-building on York Street,
where now stands the residence of Daniel
Flickinger. McLaughlin remained at his
post until his death. He was of jovial
nature, and related with zest many amusing
stories, in which he figured as the hero. Mr.
Carr taught on York Street in the room where
Miss Mattie E. Grove's select school is now
held, for several years, closing about 1828.
In the last-named year Seth Forrest opened
a school on Frederick Street. Luther H.
Skinner had a school for some time on York
Street, in the same room formerly used by
Mr. Carr. George W. Stouffer taught for
some years in McLaughlin's old schoolroom.
A school building formerly stood on the lot
occupied by John S. Young's dwelling, on
Carlisle Street, and another stood at the
eastern end of York Street.

A few German private schools were started,
but they declined for want of patronage.
This was doubtless caused by the fact that
the Germans, though jealous of the English
language as shown by their opposition to the
introduction of English preaching, were yet
sensible that the English was the favored
language, and that the prospects of their
children would be bettered by a knowledge
of the ruling tongue.

When the common school question came
up for decision there were many in Hanover
who opposed it. Henry Wirt and Luther H.
Skinner were the first delegates to the
conventions at York to decide whether Han-
over should accept the new system; both
voted in favor of it, and it was put into oper-
ation in 1836. George W. Stouifer and a Dr.
Smith taught the first public schools, one in
the Reformed schoolhouse, on York Street,,
and the other in a building on the same street,
on a lot on which G. H. Shirk has lately built
a brick dwelling. In 1847-48, a lot was
bought on Carlisle Street, and a two-story
brick schoolhouse built thereon, the children
having the whole public common for a play-
ground. This lot is now owned by Reuben
Young, and the building serves him as a stable.
George Young and Rev. Martin Lohr were the
building committee in charge of the erection
of this building — the two schools held in this
building were taught at sundry times by


Nathan U. Buckley, Matthias N. Trone,
George W. Gist and J. Wicker.

When the railroad was built in 1852 the
lot and building on Carlisle Street were sold
to George Young for S2,000. The board, then
composed of the following-named members:
William Bange, president; Jesse Frysinger,
secretary; Dr. John Swope, John Grove,
Henry C. Schriver and Peter Flickinger.
bought one-half of the present lot for $300
from John Barnitz, of New Oxford. It was
found that this lot was too small, the other
half of the lot was bought for ifSOO. On this
lot the present schoolhouse was built at a
cost of $4,000. Rufus Winterode was the
contractor. Peter Bough, the present janitor,
has served almost continuously since the
house was built.

During the year 1885, the school board,
composed of Henry Wirt, Washington Bair,
William Heltzel, William A. Slagle, Charles
Trone, William Albright, D. D. Ehrhart and
William F. Stair built a well-planned school-
house in the Third Ward. The lot was
bought from Cornelius Yoang for $2,000.
The building, from an excellent design of J.
A. Dempwolf, cost about $15,000.

Dr. F. A. H. Koch and Howard Young,
became members of the board in June 1885.


The rich agricultural lands surrounding
Hanover naturally brought about the manu-
facture of farming implements. The first in-
dustry of importance of this kind was wagon-
making. When pleasure carriages became
common, and there were great demands for
them, a number of persons were engaged in
their manufacture. Joseph and Samuel Alt-
hoff, William and Andrew Soliday, George
Thomas and others each made them on an
extensive scale, before the civil war. About
1870 the business rapidly declined, although
there are yet a large number made.

Tanning was a profitable industry, at an
early day. Jacob Forney did a large business
half a century ago. He was followed by Hen-
ry Winebrenner. Matthias Forney, George
Nace, George Thomas and Cornelius Young
were engaged in this business on a somewhat
extensive scale. Michael Etzler now owns
the only tannery in operation in Hanover.

Conrad Moul, in 1852, began to make the
first reapers that were manufactured in York
Coanty. He started this business at bis home,
then north of the toll-gate, on Abbottstown
Street, and afterward built a shop in town.
He obtained the shop-right to make the
Hussey reaper and mower. The first year he
made four machines and sold three of them;

the second year he made a few more and dis-
posed of all of them. In 1854 he exhibited
one of his reapers and mowers at the York
County fair, where it attracted great atten-
tion, it being the first and only machine of
the kind on exhibition. The following year
he began to make them in great numbers,
and employed many hands to construct them.
He afterward made a few of the " Dorsey, "
and a large number of the "Ball" and "John-
ston" machines. He prepared all of the wood
work in his own shops and. Obtained the cast-
ings at the Fitz Foundry, then in full opera-

Daniel Flickinger commenced to make the
"Manny" reaper and mower, in 1855, and John
and Peter Flickinger the next year began the
manufacture of the same machine. They
soon after obtained the county right to make
the " Dorsey " reaper, which was the first
machine to successfully use the self rake.
The castings were made in their own foundry,
in which they also made a great many thrash-
ing machines and other agricultural im-

Mr. Mummau started the first foundry in
the vicinity of Hanover, about one mile from
j town, on the York road, and kept it in opera-
tion but a short time.

Jacob Fitz, as a young man, began the same
business in a shop on his father's farm, north
of the village, of Jefferson. In 1838, he
moved to Hanover and started a foundry,
which afterward proved to be one of the
most extensive manufacturing enterprises
the town has ever had. He made many
varieties of agricultural implements. Nearly
all of the first thrashing machines used over
a large section of country, were made at his
establishment on Abbottstown Street. In
1848, and for several years later he made as
j many as 800 thrashers annually and em-
ployed from thirty to forty workmen.

The large five-story brick grist-mill, near
the foundry, was built in 1863, at a cost of
130,000. It then contained four burrs, three
for flour and one for chopping. They were
driven by a fiftj' horsepower engine. This
mill was purchased in 1885 by George Kline-
felter and Charles E. Moul, who refitted it
and placed in it improved machinery. Its
capacity is ninety barrels of flour per day.

Conrad Moul & Co's planing-mill, sash
factory, etc. , on Chestnut Street, employs
about thirty workmen regularly, and is in
continual operation.

The canning of fruits and vegetables is

carried on extensively by David E. Winebren-

! ner, who employs, during the summer

1 months, from 150 to 200 men, women and



children. This is a valuable industry to the

The business of manufacturing cigars gives
employment to more persons in Hanover now
than any other industry. There are several
important factories in continual operation.
Among them are those of Daniel F. Stair,
Jesse Frysinger, Charles Bowman, J. Bair,
Harry Trone and L. Paff.

J. S. Young & Co., for a number of years,
have made, on a very large scale, flavine and
extract of quercitron from bark. Immense
quantities of bark are annually consumed at
their establishment, which consists of about
a dozen buildings. The same firm conducts
a similar business in Baltimore.

The large flouring-mill of Welsh, Sleeder
& Co. , built a few years ago, is now manu-
facturing a superior quality of floiu-, by the
new process. The brand of flour here made
has gained an enviable reputation, and is
meeting with a large sale.


When the first apparatus for extinguishing
fire was used in Hanover cannot now be de-
termined, but the leather buckets were in
readiness for use in 1780. Early in this
century an engine was procured. After a
fire, in the year 1820, a town meeting was
held, and a petition was soon after presented
to the council, asking that an engine, not to
cost more than §800, be purchased, and that
a tax be laid on the real estate within the
borough to pay for it. In July, 1830. the
town council purchased from Asa Cummings,
of Boston, an engine which was called "The
Tiger," at a cost of S275. Sometime after-
ward another engine was obtained, which was
called "The Lion." Both these engines are
still in possession of the borough. In 1856
another engine was bought of a Baltimore
firm for S450, and a reel to carry the hose
was bought for $50. This engine was called
"The Washington." The small building
used for some years for the tire apparatus,
was located on Chestnut Street. On this
same spot the handsome two-story building
was erected, at a cost of $3,800, by the town
authorities, in 1882. under the administration
of L. F. Melsheimer, as chief burgess. The
upper story of this new brick building con-
tains a spacious hall. In the lower story is
kept all the fire apparatus ever owned by the
company, including the beautiful and orna-
mental " Silsby " steam fire-engine, purchased
in 1881. at a cost of $3,'300; at the same
time 1,040 feet of hose were bought for


. The Hanover Gas Company received its
charter January 8, 1870, and the works were
built in the summer of the same year, by
John L. Kuehn. of York, along the Littles-
town Railroad, near the depot. Capt. A. W.
Eichelberger. was elected president, and L.
F. Melsheimer, secretary, at the time of the
organization; both have remained continu-
ously in ofBce to this writing. The other di-
rectors are George N. Forney, R. M. Wirt,
John R. Stine, Stephen Keefer and H. Y.
Sprenkle. The company consumes about
250 tons of bituminous coal in a year in the
manufacture of gas. which is furnished at
S3 per thousand cubic feet. There are now
about 200 ,


The Water Company was organized April
25, 1872. The source of supply is an excel-
lent quality of chalybeate water, from "Gitt's
Spring," on the southern slope of the Pidg-
eon Hills, not far distant from a rich vein of
iron ore, through which the water passes.
It is the ingredient known as protoxide of
iron, that gives to this water its healthful
and invigorating properties, and is much val-
ued as a blood purifier. The water is brought
in six inch iron pipes from the source, 18.000
feet northwest of Hanover. The person who
used every energy to organize the water com-
pany, was the late C. C. Wirt, who became
the first secretary. He also originated other
needed public improvements in Hanover, but
died early in life. The engineer of the com-
pany was R. K. Martin, of Baltimore Water
Works. The reservoir is 200 feet above the
highest point of the square, in which the
beautiful fountain is now located. An ad-
ditional reservoir was built during the year
1884, near the first one, to increase the sup-
ply. The original board of directors con-
sisted of the following-named persons; Jo-
seph Dellone, president; C. C. Wirt, secre-
tary; Henry Wirt, George W. Welsh, N. B.
Carver and W. J. Young.


On the afternoon of Friday, July 1, 1791,
Gen. Washington arrived in Hanover, com-
ing from the southwest, on his return from
his great Southern tour to Philadelphia,
which was then the capital of the United
States. He had but few attendants and re-
mained over night with Paul Metzgar who
then kept a store and public inn on the
corner now occupied by Grumbiue & Brock- ■
ley. This event occurred during the third


year of his first term as President of the
United States.

Tradition says, on the following morning
he walked down Baltimore Street and ob-
served men reaping wheat. Soon afterward
he started for York, arriving there at 2 P. M.
(See History of Borough of York, page 553.)


At the time of the advance of the British
on Baltimore in 1814 Hanover and vicinity
furnished two companies. The rank and file
of the one company was as follows:

Captain, Frederick Metzgar; first lieutenant,
Henry Wirt; second lieutenant, George Im-
mel; ensign, George Eiler; non-commissioned
ofiicers and privates, Joseph Morris, George
Hoke, Samuel Himes, Jacob Hostetter, Jr.,
John Myers, John Bargelt, Tobias Beck,
Leonard Buvinger, George Morningstar,
John Dines, Thomas Jarvis, Jesse Horn,
John Bange, Solomon Kuhn, Daniel Little,
Henry Melsheimer, Henry Klein, David

Shultz, John Reider, William , Jacob

Waggoner, George Stauter, Benjamin Welsh,
Christian Hass, Samuel Hawks, Henry
Bange, David Storm, Edward Kiohard.
George Myers, William Hoffman, Anthony
Shorb, John Michael, .David Blinzinger,
Henry Stock, Jacob Cramer, John Douglass,
John Weigle, Daniel Stoehr, Philip Apple,
Jacob Hilt.

The other company was commanded by
Capt. John Bair. The only names that
are now known, of soldiers who formed the
rank and file are George Frysinger, Frederick
Messing, Jacob Young, Frederick Bittinger,
George Grove, John P. Storm, Samuel
Flickinger, Adam Forney, George Grumbine,
Samuel Weigle and John Beard.

These two companies left Hanover on foot
Sunday morning, August 28, 1814, and
reached the city of Baltimore at 9 A.
M., Tuesday. September 11, they were
marched to North Point, where they lay all
night on their arms, and next day, the mem-
orable 12th of Sejitember, they took part in
the engagement with the British, who re-
treated soon after, and the Hanover Com-
panies together with other companies from
York County, returned home after two weeks'
service, not being needed longer. For the
history of the engagement in Hanover in
1863, see page 212.


The United Blues was a military company
of riflemen, organized by Capt. A. W. Eichel-
berger. The company was composed of

sixty men, in full uniform, and continued to
drill for seven years.

The Fourth Dragoons was a company or-
ganized in 1852, composed of fifty men. It
was a cavalry company, having a full uni-
form of blue coat, light blue pantaloons,
with cavalry sabres, furnished by the State,
and was commanded by Capt. Eichelberger.
They drilled once a month, for five years, on
the Public Common.

Tlie Warren Greys, commanded by Capt.
Luther Skinner, was an excellently drilled
volunteer company, in grey uniform.

The Marion Rifle Company, commanded
by Capt. Renaut, was a company in excellent
trim. About the time the Civil war began
most of the members entered the service.

The Union Band was organized in tlie year
1852. through the elforts of Capt. D. Q.
Albright, who was its leader. This was an
excellent musical organization, and was
frequently invited to neighboring towns on
important occasions. It was familiarly
known as the " Silver Band," owing to the
magnificent Tyrolese silver instruments,
which were purchased at a cost of $1,000.
One of the pieces, an E-flat cornet, cost 1100,
and was played by H. Clay Metzger. The
elegant wagon used by the band cost $500.
In the year 1863, the organization disbanded.
This was during the trying times of the
Civil war, and many of its members entered
the military service.

The Hanover Silver Cornet Band is a well
trained organization, which has existed for
many years.

The Citizens Band is a new organization
led by Prof. Gundrum.

The old-time fairs were kept up in Hanover
later than in many neighboring towns. They
attracted large crowds of people, who spent
the time in general enjoyment. The square
on these occasions was nearly filled with
tables of venders of trinkets, jewelry and
merchandise of various kinds. These fairs
finally became a sort of nuisance and were


Tlie Farmer's Inn was one of the old-time
houses of public entertainment on Baltimore
Street. It was an important stopping place
for drovers and teamsters, who followed the
business of hauling produce and grain to
Baltimore, and returned with goods and mer-
chandise on the way to their homes in nor-
thern counties. Teams to and from Pitts-
burgh frequently stopped here. J. Lamotte
opened this hotel about 1800, and was fol-



lowed by George Emmert, and he by Peter
Shultz for many years. William Albright
succeeded in 1843; his son, D. Q. Albright,
in 1847, and Jeremiah Diehl in 1852. Three
years later the hotel closed.

The Diller House was built by Major
Cyrus Diller, in 1870, at a cost of $14,000.
It is a large, five-story building, heated by
steam, and possesses all the needs of a first-
class hotel. A. F. Barker is proprietor.

The Central Hotel, on Fountain Square,
has long been a prominent stopping place for
travelers ; Arnold Kleif, proprietor. On
the same site, for half a century, stood
the tavern known as the "Stage Office."
It was the stopping place for stages going
east and west, and north and south. Ja-
cob Eichelberger was then the OAvner. Davis
Garber is the present owner.

The Franklin Home, on York Street, long
kept by Mr. Ruth, now by Frank McKinney,
and the Drover's Hotel, on Carlisle Street,
have long been prominent stopping places for
farmers. Heidelberg House is located on
.4bbottstown Street.


Col. Richard McAllister, founder of the
town of Hanover, was of Scotch descent.
Mae is the Scotch name for son, hence Mac
Allister, the original way of spelling the
name, means son of Allister.

Archibald McAllister and his brother,
came from Scotland about 1732, the former
settled near Big Spring, Cumberland Co.,
Penn., and the latter went to Virginia.

The eldest son of Archibald was Richard,
the subject of this sketch, who, on February
23, 1748, married Mary Dill, daughter of
Col. Matthew Dill, who lived in the vicinity
of the present town of Dillsburg, this coun-
ty. Richard McAllister moved to the
vicinity of Hanover about 1745. His chil-
dren were Jane, born March 3, 1750, and
married Robert White, of Georgetown, D.
C; Abdiel, born January 30, 1752; he was
commissioned second lieutenant January 9,
1776, and went on Montgomery's expedition
to Quebec, during the Revolution; Mary
Ann, born February 12, 1754; Archibald,
born April 17, 1750, great-grandfather of
Dickinson McAllister, who now lives at Fort
Hunter, Penn., married Elizabeth Carson, in
1785, and settled near Harrisburg; he was
a captain in the Revolution, and commanded
his company in the battle of Monmouth, in
New Jersey, died 1831; Matthew, born
Mav 4, 1758, married Hannah Gibbons,
went to Savannah, Ga., and became the first
United States district attorney of that State;

judge of the superior court of the State,
and mayor of Savannah during the war of
1812, and died May 9, 1823 ; Ward
McAllister, of New York City, and Col.
Julian McAllister, of the State Arsenal,
California, are his sons; Nancy, born Feb-
ruary 4, 1760; Elizabeth, born October 10,
1761; Richard, born August 28, 1763; Sarah,
born April 28, 1765; Margaret, born February
22, 1767; Jesse, born December 23, 1768, In
all, there were eleven children. Richard Mc-
Allister soon became one of the most prominent
persons in York County. Early in the trou-
bles between the colonies and England, he
took an active part. He was elected one of
the Committee of Observation and Safety in
1775; was chosen a member of the Provin-
cial Conference, of June IS, 1775, which
met in Carpenter's Hall, Philadelphia; was
next chosen a member of the Provincial Con-
ference, of January 18, 1776, and next became
colonel of the Second Battalion of the York
County Associators; was elected by the general
assembly of Pennsylvania county lieutenant;
on June 4, 1778, to superintend the organi-
zation of the militia of York County, and
afterward became one of the committee to

Online LibraryJohn GibsonHistory of York County Pennsylvania From the Earliest Time to the Present → online text (page 121 of 218)