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troops which served for a period of three years
in the Civil war, and the "71st Pennsylvania,"
known in the annals of the Civil war as the
"California Regiment." In 1902, at the solici-
tation of the Historical Society of York Coun-
ty, he began to collect and build up a museum,
library and various collections of historic views
and portraits for that organization, which oc-
cupies a large room on the third floor of the
new court house at York. His literary studies
have covered the whole range of American his-
tory and biography, but he has devoted special
attention to local history, which led to the prep-
aration of the first volume of this work, en-
titled "History of York County." He has been
a contributor to literary magazines and has
prepared numerous historical papers and vari-
ous publications. He is curator and librarian
of the Historical Society of York Count)^
member of the National Geographic Society
and the American Historical Association.
Since 1904 he has been principal and owner of
the York School of Business.

Mr. Prowell was married, at Stamford,
Conn., in October, 187S, to Virginia, daughter
of Col. John and Sarah (Tillman) Dean. They
have three children, Nellie B., Edna D. and



HISTORY OF YORK COUNTY, PENNSYLVANIA



Dean Prowell. Col. Samuel Dean, grandfather
of ]\Irs. Prowell, commanded a regiment of
militia, from the State of Connecticut, in the
Revolution, and participated in the battles of
Long Island, White Plains, Trenton, Prince-
ton and Monmouth.

Mr. Prowell is of Welsh descent. His first
American ancestor, James Prowell, came to
Pennsylvania with the early Welsh immigrants
and settled in Chester county, near Philadel-
phia. Thomas Prowell, his youngest son, was
married in October, 1752, to Rachel Griffith,
in Old Swede's Church, Philadelphia, soon af-
ter that church was transferred to the Episco-
palians. He died in 1765, leaving two sons,
Joseph and William, both of whom were offi-
cers in the American Revolution. Their biog-
raphies appear in the first volume of this work.
William Prowell, who served as a captain in
the Revolution, settled in Warrington town-
ship soon after the war had ended and later
moved to Fairview township, where he died in
181 1. By his first marriage, with Mary Nel-
son, he had three children, Joseph, Samuel and
Jane. Joseph Prowell married Mary Nichols,
daughter of John Nichols, and granddaughter
of William Nichols, who served as an ensign
in Colonel Irvine's Regiment, Captain Grier's
Company, in the first Canadian expedition, in
1775. In 1777-78 he was a captain in Colonel
Hartley's Regiment. He died in Fairview
township in 181 2. Joseph Prowell died in 1838,
leaving five children : Samuel N., James, Hi-
ram, Ehzabeth and Mary. Samuel N. Prowell,
the eldest son and father of George R. Prowell,
married Sarah, daughter of William Reeser,
founder of the borough of Manchester.

HORACE BONHAM (deceased), whose
contributions to the world of art brought him
well-deserved fame, was descended from an
ancestry that has left an indelible impress on
the history of the country. Among the passen-
gers of the "Mayflower" was Edward Fuller,
and his granddaughter, Hannah Fuller, was
married in Barnstable, Mass., to Nicholas Bon-
ham.

Nicholas Bonham with his wife and several
children moved to New Brunswick, N. J.,
where he built a home and had a farm. Other
settlers located near him, and the town of Bon-
hamton was formed and named.

Hezekiah Bonham,- only surviving son of
Nicholas, was one of the founders of the Bap-
tist Church in New Jersey. He was a very



religious man, and in Hunterdon county, N. J.,
founded the large Seventh Day Baptist Con-
gregation. The Bonhams owned the greater
part of the land between Bonhamton and Eliza-
bethtown. Hezekiah Bonham was twice mar-
ried. His first wife was Mary Dunn. Chil-
dren were born of both marriages, and one son.
Rev. Malachi Bonham, died in New Jersey.

Maj. Absalom Bonham, grandfather' of the
late Horace Bonham, moved from New Jersey
to Maryland, locating near Frederick. He was
accompanied b}^ his wife, and probably by chil-
dren. When the storm cloud of the Revolu-
tion lowered in 1776, he went back to New Jer-
sey and enlisted, as did also his sons, Malachi
and James. Malachi enlisted with an uncle
Malachi in a Maryland regiment, while James
(whose mother had died, and who resented his
father's subsequent marriage to Miss Rebecca
Morris, of New Jersey) ran away from home,
and enlisted under General Greene, serving un-
til the close of the war. When peace had again
settled over the land Maj. Absalom Bonham
moved to Lincolnton, N. C, where he died in
about 1794. He was buried in full regimentals.
His second wife survived him many years and
died at an advanced age. By his first wife Maj.
Bonham had three children, Malachi, James
and a daughter; by his second wife: Samuel
Cox; and Sarah, who married a Mr. Ross, of
Georgia.

Samuel Cox Bonham was born in Lincoln-
ton, N. C, and was but three years of age
when his father died. Prior to 1820 he came to
Pennsylvania, first settling in Washington,
Lancaster county. He afterward removed to
York county, and settled on the homestead in
West Manchester township, where he carried
on farming until his death, in May, 1856. He
was a public-spirited citizen, a Democrat in
politics, and an intimate friend of President
Buchanan. In 1820 he became a member of
the I. O. O. F. in Washington, Lancaster coun-
ty. Samuel C. Bonham was married twice.
His first wife was Mary, daughter of Gen. Ja-
cob Drift, an officer in the Revolutionary army.
It is supposed she died in Lancaster county.
To this marriage were born two sons : De Witt
Clinton, who went to Mississippi to live, and
when the Civil war broke out, entered the Con-
federate service, and died at Camp Beauregard
after three months' illness with fever ; and Ja-
cob, who went West and died in young man-
hood. For his second wife Samuel C. Bon-



BIOGRAPHICAL



23



ham married Mrs. Elizabeth (Stayman)
Strickler, who died in November, 1867, in the
faith of the Methodist Episcopal church. Five
children were born to this union: Rebecca,
who married T. Addison Denny, of Maryland,
and who, about 1874, went to Rome, Ga.,
seeking, in the mountain air, relief for asthma,
and there died ten years later ; Sarah, who died
unmarried in June, 1891 ; Horace and John
Milton, twins, of whom the latter married
Elizabeth Nimick of Pittsburg, who died in
April, 1886, and he died at Atlantic City, June
17, 1897; and Emily, who died in August,
1868, at the age of twenty-five.

Horace Bonham was born in West Man-
chester township, York county, on his father's
farm, Nov. 26, 1835, twin, as above stated, to
John Milton. He began his education in a
private school, conducted by a Quakeress, Ann
Love, and under her guidance he remained
until he entered York County Academy, where
he studied until he was fourteen. Horace was
sent to Williamsport, Pa., where his brother-
in-law, a Methodist Episcopal minister, was
stationed, when fourteen, and there entered
Dickinson Seminary. He remained there a
short time, and then he and his twin brother
entered Wesleyan Institute, Middletown, N.
Y., to prepare for Yale. After a few months
at Yale, Mr. Bonham suffered an attack of
typhoid fever, followed by erysipelas, and after
a long illness entered Lafayette College, grad-
uating with the class of 1856. His father died
just prior to the son's graduation, and the lat-
ter returned home. As it had been the father's
wish he should study law, the young man,
much against his own inclination, read law in
York, under Thomas Cochran, and was ad-
mitted to the Bar. All his life he had given
evidence of artistic talent, and he desired to
give his whole time and attention to painting.
He gave up law, but did not immediately take
up art. He purchased the York Republican,
and edited it for a few years as a weekly. In
1 86 1 he started a small daily, called the York
Recorder, but after about three months dis-
continued it because of lack of support. Dur-
ing the first administration of President Lin-
coln he tried for the United States assessor-
ship of this Congressional District, and se-
cured it. and was reappointed for a second
term, but when Lincoln was assassinated, and
President Johnson succeeded to the office,
another assessor was appointed in the face of



a strong petition gotten up by the citizens of
the district for the retention of Mr. Bonham.
In February, 1869, he went abroad to study
painting, finally locating in Munich. In the
fall of 1869 he returned to York, and for the
remainder of his life devoted himself to his
chosen calling. His pictures were exhibited
chiefly in Boston and Philadelphia, invariably
winning high commendation from connois-
seurs from all parts of the world. His picture
"Nearing the Issue," showing a group of men
witnessing a cockfight, in the expression on
the eager faces, shows marvelous ability in the
portrayal of emotions. This famous painting
hangs in the Cochran Art Gallery, at Wash-
ington, D. C.

Mr. Bonham was a singularly modest man,
and found his greatest happiness in his home.
He was a man of fine literary distinction and
was very fond of reading. Many fugitive
gems of poetry came from his pen. In his
youth he was confirmed in the Episcopal
Church, under the Rev. Mr. Thompson, and
for many years was a regular attendant upon
church services, but in his later years he be-
came very liberal in religious views. While
a member of the York Club, he could not in
any way be regarded as a club man.

On Jan. 27, 1870, Mr. Bonham was mar-
ried to Miss Rebekah Lewis, who was born in
Baltimore, daughter of Eli and Rebecca (For-
ney) Lewis, of Hanover, York county, and
granddaughter of Eli Lewis, who, although a
Quaker, was major of a battalion in the Revo-
lution, and fought at Germantown and Brandy-
wine. The progenitor of the Lewises was in
the service of the State from Chester. Pa. Four
children were born to Mr. and Mrs. Bonham.
namely: Mary L.. who died in infancy in
Mav. 1872; and Elizabeth S.. Amy L. and
Eleanor M.. at home. Mr. Bonham entered
into rest March 7, 1802. sincerely mourned by
a wide circle of friends.

RICHARD E. COCHRAN, senior mem-
ber of the law firm of Cochran & Williams,
was born Jan. 6. 1857. son of Thomas E. and
Anna M. "(Barnitz) Cochran, of York, Penn-
sjdvania.

Richard E. Cochran was liberally educated,
completing the course at the York high school,
the York County Academy, and the York Col-
legiate Institute, graduating from the latter
institution in June, 1876. He read law with



24



HISTORY OF YORK COUNTY, PENNSYLVANIA



his father, and was admitted to the Bar Sept.
15, 1879, since when he has taken a leading
position in the courts of York county. He was
subsequently appointed deputy secretary of
the Commonweath by Governor Hastings, and
assumed the duties of office Oct. 20, 1897, re-
signing the same March i, 1899. His father
was long known as a man of eminence in his
profession, and his mantle has, in great meas-
ure, fallen on his son.

On Nov. 10, 1886, Mr. Cochran was mar-
>ried to Miss Mary E. Kckey, of Lancaster,
Pa., who died Aug. 30, 1887. Mr. Cochran
was married (second) Dec. 14, 1898. to Miss
Agnes M. Wainwright, of Middlebury, Ver-
mont.

On Oct. 20, 1897, Governor Hastings ap-
pointed Mr. Cochran Deputy Secretary of the
Commonwealth, which official position he filled
until March 2, 1899. Mr. Cochran is a mem-
ber of the Lafayette Club, of York. He also
belongs to York Lodge, A. F. & A. M., How-
ell Chapter, and York Commandery, Knights
Templar, and is a past master, at present
'holding the office of district deputy grand
master of District No. 42, in which York is
located. He is a member and one of the ves-
trymen of St. John's Episcopal Church.

HON. NEVIN M. WANNER. The his-
tory of a county, as well as that of a 'State,
is chiefly the chronicle of the lives and deeds
of those who have conferred honor and dig-
nity on society. The public generally judges
the character of a community by that of its
representative citizens, and yields its tribute
of respect and esteem for the genius, learning
or virtues of those whose deeds constitute the
record of the county's prosperity and pride.
York county's records contain the names of
many citizens who, through long service, the
gift of genius, or by their faithful performance
of duty, have reflected credit upon their coun-
ty, but none are written in better form than
that of the gentleman whose name appears at
the head of this review.

Hon. Nevin M. Wanner, now one of the
judges of the courts of York county. Pa., was,
"before his elevation to the Bench, one of the
most prominent lawyers of southern Pennsyl-
vania, and had acquired a legal reputation that
■extended beyond the boundaries of his State.
He is the son of Rev. A. Wanner, D. D., a
former well-known minister of the Reformed
Church, whose death occurred at York, Pa.,



at the age of seventy-five years, in 1894. His
mother, whose maiden name was Rebecca Mil-
ler, died at York, Pa., Nov. 8, 1905. She was
a daughter of Solomon Miller, Esq., who was
the head of one of the oldest and best-known
families of Franklin county. Pa. Of the family
of Judge Wanner's father there are now sur-
viving three sons and two daughters, viz. :
Nevin M. Wanner, the Judge; Atreus Wan-
ner, city superintendent of public schools of
York, Pa. ; W. S. Wanner, wholesale dealer in
leaf tobacco, of York, Pa. ; Alice, widow of
William H. Leighty, deceased, of German-
town, Ohio ; and Myra, wife of Samuel Bar-
nitz, merchant, of Mifflinburg, Pennsylvania.

Nevin M. Wanner, the subject of this
sketch, was born May 14, 1850, at Washing-
tonville, Columbiana Co., Ohio, where his edu-
cation began in a typical log schoolhouse of the
olden time. He finished his public school life
by graduating from the high school at German-
town, Ohio, in 1866, and in the same year en-
tered Heidelberg College, at Tiffin, Ohio, at
the early age of sixteen years, where he re-
mained for two years. He then entered Frank-
lin and Marshall College, Lancaster, Pa., where
he graduated in 1870, carrying off one of the
leading honors of his class, viz. : the "Franklin
Oration." After graduating there he took a
two years' course of law lectures, in the Law
Department of the University of Pennsyl-
vania, during the sessions of 187Q-71 and
1871-72. His legal preceptor in Philadelphia
was Gen. B. F. Fisher, with whom he acquired
the office experience so necessary to success-
ful practice. His preceptor at York, Pa., was
Erastus H. Weiser, Esq. On Aug. 28, 1872,
Mr. Wanner was admitted to the Bar of York
county, and later on was admitted to practice
in the Supreme and Superior courts of his
State, and to various county courts in the
commonwealth.

In the last twenty-five years of his prac-
tice, Mr. Wanner is said to have attended, for
the argument of his cases, at every meeting of
the Supreme court of Pennsylvania, held for
York county cases. Before going on the
Bench Mr. Wanner had acquired such an ex-
ceptional reputation as a trial lawyer that but
few important cases were tried in the local
courts in which he was not retained. During his
practice of thirty-three years he probably tried
more cases than any other member of the local
Bar had ever done. As a lawyer he held
numerous positions of trust and honor, not




^^^i^^^i^y/tyh^^



BIOGRAPHICAL



25



the least of these being that of solicitor for
the Pennsylvania Railroad Company, the
Northern Central Railway Company, and the
lines c6ntrolled by them in York, Adams,
-Cumberland and Perry counties.

In politics Mr. Wanner is a Democrat and
has always supported the principles of con-
•servative Democracy. In 1887 he was elected
District Attorney of York county. Pa., and
•on Nov. 7, 1905, he was elevated to the Bench.
His election to this honored position was not
merely the usual result of a party nomination.
His party in the county of York had suffered
a disastrous defeat at the polls at the preced-
ing general election. But Mr. Wanner^s long
■experience at the Bar, his acknowledged abil-
ity, and intimate personal acquaintance with
all classes of the people, gave him such a gen-
■eral support, independent of party lines, that
he was triumphantly elected.

Beginning his career with a complete
classical education Mr. Wanner continued to
be a close student of the law, and has devoted
himself to his practice alone, to the practical
exclusion of all other business enterprises. In
religion he is a member of the Reformed
Church, though in latter years he has attended
the Episcopal Church.

On Nov. I, 1882, Mr. Wanner was united
in marriage to Miss Amelia Doudel Croll, a
daughter of the late well-known and prominent
merchant, John S. Croll, of York, Pa. Mrs.
Wanner comes from one of the oldest families
in the city. Her ancestors since Revolution-
ary days have been prominent in society and
local history.

The Wanner family is of German extrac-
tion on both sides. Peter Miller, the maternal
great-grandfather of Judge Wanner, was born
in Frankfort, Germany, March 7, 1743, and
-died in Franklin county. Pa., April 10, 1829.
His paternal great-grandfather came to Amer-
ica late in the eighteenth century. His grand-
father, Jacob Wanner, settled near The
Trappe, Montgomery Co., Pa., where the
Judge's father was bom, and where he lived
until he went into the ministry.

ATREUS WANNER, City Superin-
tendent of the York Public Schools, son of
Rev. Aaron and Rebecca (Miller) Wanner,
was born in Washingtonville, Ohio, Sept. 26,
1852. Both parents and grandparents were
natives of Pennsylvania. He was graduated
at Franklin and Marshall College, of Lancas-



ter, Pa., in 1873. After filling positions in
different schools in Pennsylvania he accepted
the assistant principalship of the York High
School, in the spring of 1876. Mr. Wanner
served the public schools of York as assistant
principal of the High School from 1876 to
1880, and as principal from 1880 to 1890,
when he accepted the duties of the superin-
tendency. During his administration as city
superintendent York has nearly doubled in
population. This required the erection of a
large number of school buildings and the es-
tablishment of many schools. The educational
interests of York have been rapidly advanced
under his care and direction.

Mr. Wanner is a vestryman of St. John's
Protestant Episcopal Church, treasurer of the
York County Historical Society and president
of the York Public Library Board. He has
devoted his leisure to scientific pursuits and
is a contributor on local archaeology and
geology to the government reports and to sci-
entific papers. He discovered fossil reptile
tracks in the red sandstone of York county.
A descriptive paper first presented to the
American Association for the Advancement
of Science was subsequently published with
illustrations in the Pennsylvania State Geo-
logical Reports. He has also discovered a
number of new species in the York county
geological formations, thus adding to both the
flora of the Trias and the fauna of the Cam-
brian. The following estimate of Mr. "Wan-
ner's work in the Trias, by Lester F. Ward,
is from a recent government report ("Older
Mesozoic Floras of LTnited States," page 430) :
"Mr. Wanner's excellent work in Pennsyl-
vania has tended to bring the deposits of York
County, Pennsylvania, into substantial har-
mony with those farther south." An excel-
lent paper read by Mr. Wanner before the
Historical Society of York County relating
to local Indian tribes appears in the first vol-
ume of this work. He is a Fellow of the
American Association for the Advancement
of Science and member of the American An-
thropological Association.

Mr. Wanner was married, June 21. 1882,
to Miss Clara J. Eckert, daughter of Henry
and Elizabeth C. Eckert, of Gordonville, Lan-
caster county. An only child, H. Eckert Wan-
ner, is a member of the class of 1907 of the
University of Pennsylvania. Mr. Wanner's
brother, Hon. N. M. Wanner, is one of the
judges of the courts of York county.



26



HISTORY OF YORK COUNTY, PENNSYLVANIA



HON. JOHN W. BITTENGER, Presi-
dent Judge of York county, is a descendant of
old Pennsylvania ancestry, and; was born at
York Springs, Adams county, Nov. lO, 1834,
son of Henry and Julia A. (Sheffer) Bit-
tenger.

Capt. Nicholas Bittenger, great-grand-
father of the Hon. John W., was a native and
resident of Adams county, then a part of
York county, of which he was a worthy pio-
neer. He was one of the patriot soldiers in
the war of the Revolution. His son, Joseph,
was the paternal grandfather of Judge Bit-
tenger.

Henry Sheffer, maternal great-grandfather
of the Hon. John W. Bittenger, was also a
Revolutionary patriot. Daniel Sheffer, son of
Henry, was a native of York county, and early
in life practiced medicine, becoming subse-
quently Associate Judge of Adams county, and
in 1836 he was elected to represent Adams and
Franklin counties in the United States Con-
gress. He attained great distinction as a po-
litical leader and lay jurist, and was one of
the prominent figures in the political and pub-
lic circles of his day.

Henry Bittenger, son of Joseph, was united
in marriage with Julia A. Sheffer, daughter
of Daniel Sheffer, and they became the par-
ents of three children, viz. : Mrs. George C.
Barnitz, of Middletown, Ohio; Mrs. Reuben
Young, of Hanover; and John W., President
Judge of York county.

John W. Bittenger acquired his elementary
education in the public schools, at the academy
at Strasburg, Pa., and in Rockville, Md., which
was supplemented by a partial course at Penn-
sylvania College, Gettysburg. While studying
at Pennsylvania College, he registered with
the Hon. Moses McLean, of Gettysburg, as a
student-at-law. He subsequently went to
Rockville, Md., where he finished his legal
studies in the office of W. Viers Bouic, subse-
quently Judge of the Circuit Court of that
county, and was admitted to the Bar of Mont-
gomery county, Md., in 1856. In the same
year Mr. Bittenger entered Harvard Law
School, at Cambridge, Mass., and was gradu-
ated in the year 1857, with the degree of LL.
B. He then went to Lexington, Ky., and en-
tered upon the practice of his profession, re-
maining in that State three years.

In i860 Mr. Bittenger removed to York,
Pa., with whose Bar and judiciary he has
since been identified. In politics Judge Bit-



tenger has always been a Democrat, and has
taken a prominent and influential part in the
party councils, having been a leader and cam-
paign orator in the Democratic contests m
York county. In 1862 he began his official
career with the nomination for and election to
the district attorneyship of the county. Through
re-election he served for six years. Upon re-
tiring from that office he entered upon his
practice at the Bar, and at the time of accept-
ing the judgeship had worked up a large and
lucrative practice, and become a leading mem-
ber of the Bar. In 1888 Judge Bittenger rep-
resented his party in the National Convention
at St. Louis. In November, 1890, he was ap-
pointed by Governor Beaver to fill the vacancy
occasioned on the Bench of the Nineteenth
Judicial District, York county, by the death
of the Hon. John Gibson. The same year the
Judge became the nominee of his party for the
judgeship, and was elected at the November
election, and in 1900 he was re-elected by a
handsome majority, the Republican party hav-
ing endorsed him in convention, and made no
nomination against him. Since 1895 he has
served as President Judge of the York County
Courts, and his rulings have attracted atten-
tion all over the State on account of their clear-
ness and fairness.

Judge Bittenger married Miss Anna Bren-
neman, of York county, and they have the fol-
lowing children, all at home : Ida, Julia, Dan-
iel S., Charles E. and Louisa Augusta. All
are attendants and members of Trinity Re-
formed Church of York.

REV. GEORGE W. ENDERS, A. M.,.
D. D., is a son of Jacob Enders, who came ta
America in 1854.

Dr. Enders was born in Germany Oct. 26,
.1841, and commenced his education in the
schools of Germany, which he attended until
his thirteenth year. He was born in the same
old stone house in Germany in which his fath-
er, grandfather and great-grandfather had
been born, this house having been built before
the Reformation. On his wedding tour, in.
1870, Dr. Enders revisited this old home, and
preached in the church in which he had been



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