Chester County PA - Regional and Miscellaneous History Collection

Chester County PA - Regional and Miscellaneous History Collection


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This is a collection of various historical and genealogical reference works on Pennsylvania. These references cover 1000's of individuals, and are an excellent way to start or continue research focused on PA.

This material was scanned from original publications and will be provided as text searchable PDFs (unless noted in description). These files can be read using many PDF reader programs (Windows / Mac / Linux), however Adobe Reader or Acrobat are recommended.

Town, Township & Regional Histories

Annals of Phoenixville and its Vicinity (Samuel Whitaker Pennypacker, 1872, 301 pages)
According to the title page, this publication provides "the origin and growth of the borough, with information concerning the adjacent townships of Chester and Montgomery and the Valley of the Schuylkill." The information related is both historical and biographical in nature. It begins with the early history of the area, starting with the original native inhabitants, the settlement of the area, the troubles the settlers had up to and including the Revolution and the war of 1812. It then proceeds into the history of Phoenixville, its foundation and growth, businesses and industries, public works, schools, churches, etc. It also includes a section on the Civil War which includes a list of soldiers and their companies. Near the end of the publication there is also a section on the families of the area.

Families Sketched:
Ashenfelter (Eschenfeldter), Coffman (Kauffman), Davis, Heaton, Jacobs, John, Knerr, Kreamer (Cramer, Kramer), Morgan, Morris, Pawling, Pennypacker (Pannebacker), Reeves, Robinson, Stevens, Suplee (Soupli), Vanderslice (Van der Sluys), Wheatley, Whitaker, Yerkes (Gerjhes, Gerekes, Jerghes, Jerghjes, Yerkhas)

West Chester, Pennsylvania. The Most Important Suburb
of Philadelphia (The Board of Trade, 1888, 115 pages)
This publication is a descriptive account of the Borough of West Chester, Chester Co., PA. It was published to highlight the advantages of West Chester, which made it an attractive place to live and do business.

Oxford - A Representative Pennsylvania Borough (The Board of Trade, 1894, 153 pages)
This publication is a descriptive account of the Borough of Oxford, Chester County, PA. It was published to highlight the advantages of the town, which made it an attractive place to live and do business.

West Chester Past and Present - Centennial Souvenir
1799-1899 (Daily Local News, 1899, 172 pages)
This book was published as a commemoration of the centennial of West Chester, Chester County, PA in the year 1899. It is both a historical and pictorial souvenir of the town containing a wealth of information. The historical information covers a wide range of topics, from a general history of the town to chapters dealing with its industries and institutions, its schools and civic organizations, its churches and government, etc. There are also sections dealing with the prominent and influential citizens of the town both men and women. Finally, at the end of the publication is a directory of the town's residents for the year 1899, listing adult residents, their address and occupation. In addition to this information there are dozens of photographs included of residents and scenes around the town.

Surnames Indexed:
Bell, Bolmar, Butler, Carruthers, Culver, Darlington, Dickinson, Dunn, Ehrenzeller, Everhart, Gause, Guss, Hannum, Hartman, Hayes, Hoopes, Hyatt, Jefferis, Lewis, MacVeagh, Marshall, McCall, McCauley, McClellan, McIntire, Monaghan, Moore, Pennypacker, Phelps, Philips, Rothrock, Sharples, Spalding, Sweney, Talbot, Taylor, Townsend, Waddell, Wyers

The Greater Reading Vol. II, Nos. 4 & 5 [Coatesville, Oxford,
Quarryville & Strasburg] (W. S. Hamaker, 1899, 52 pages)
This publication is a rare periodical from southeastern Pennsylvania. Published in newspaper format, it contains a variety of information from articles for women, accounts from across the country, to highlights of prosperous business interests. The majority of the publication, however, deals with southeastern Pennsylvania. The towns of Coatsville, Oxford in Chester County are highlighted in this issue, providing a sketch of the town followed by sketches of some of their businesses and prominent citizens. Also a few businessmen from Quarryville and Strasburg, Lancaster County are covered. Throughout the publication there are a few additional articles of local interest including a sketch of 4 Lancaster County men who helped to make history, the Strasburg Railroad, and the Philadelphia Museums.

Ashton D. Rea, Y.M.C.A., O. C. Jackson & Son, Vincent & Pownall, Richard Strode, Coatesville Weekly Times, Robert Bernan, Jackson & Weaver, C. N. Speakman, Robert Young, Frank L. Stacy, E. P. Yeoman, Louis A. Bolton, Christian Bautel, Harry Garman, John Gilfillan, Joseph T. Peirce, S. Edes, F. E. Dorsheimer's East End Carriage Works, Cannon's Baker and Cafe, J. Thomas Wiley, The Star Bottling Co., F. D. Burnites Spoke and Handle Works, Wilson, Pugh & Wilson, Samuel W. Wilson, The Oxford Hotel, E. Haines Dickinson, A. M. Book, S. Book & Bros. Warerooms, S. P. Engle, Joseph A. Ressler, Mowrer & Fisher, Aaron Groff Coach Works, D. B. Martin, B. F. Book, A. M. Garber, F. H. Andrews

History of Downingtown Chester County, PA
(Charles H. Pennypacker, 1909, 168 pages)
This was published as a semi-centennial history of the Borough of Downingtown, Chester County, PA. It begins with an account of the first settlers of the area, particularly the families of Parke, Downing and Hunt. The narrative proceeds through the Revolutionary period, citing the part Downingtown's citizens played. It goes on to cover various institutions of the town such as schools, churches, banks, fire companies, businesses, fraternal orders, etc.

1875-1925 - Old Home Week - West Chester, Penna
(Anonymous, 1925, 96 pages)
This is a pictorial souvenir of West Chester, Chester County, PA published in 1925. It is also a historical sketch of Company I of the 111th Infantry PA National Guard. There are numerous photographs of in both sections of the publication.

Church, Family, Education, Military and Miscellaneous Histories

Industrial and Commercial Resources of Pennsylvania
(Historical Publishing Company, 1886, 122 pages)
This publication is a history and description of the business operations from dozens of towns throughout south eastern Pennsylvania. Each business is detailed in sketch form, giving, in many cases, a brief history of its existence, management, and a description of its operations. This information was only published in this publication making this a rare and useful resource for historical or genealogical research in these counties of PA.

Chester County
-- From Downington: -- Downingtown Manufacturing Co., Judson Armor, John L. Weldin, George J. Hughes, F. W. Wetherill, Thomas Pedrick, -- From Coatesville: -- The Coatesville Carriage Works, Midway House, R. D. Ford, W. B. Sharpe, The Bee Hive, J. E. Doan, Stephenson House, James Eachus, C. N. Speakman, Dr. H. C. McClure, N. H. Baker, Dr. J. G. Thompson, J. G. Dance, H. G. Thomas, Levi Harman, Jos. M. Hanway, Samuel Greewood & Son -- From West Chester: -- Joseph B. Smith, H. W. Robinson, Thomas John, Aaron Davis, George F. Brinton, David Jones, M. M. Canizares, Mansion House, Enos Seeds, Mullin & Loomis, David J. Scott, Engle Hotel, H. M. Morris, T. P. Apple, Henry C. Baldwin, Max Meyer, Wm. H. Hughes, Wm. Donovan, Ralston R. Hoopes, W. J. Hopewell, E. C. Hickman, G. H. Ganges, The Edison Electric Illuminating Co., T. C. Eldridge, John Shepherd, Embree's Rotary Butter Worker and Improved Upright Power Churn, John M. Ingram, John A. Groff, George Kerr

Industries and Wealth of the Principle Points in Southeastern Pennsylvania
(Excepting Philadelphia) Embracing Dauphin, York, Lancaster, Schuylkill,
Berks, Bucks, Montgomery, Chester and Delaware Counties
(American Publishing and Engraving Co., 1890, 148 pages)
This publication contains sketches of industrial and economic significance from the major populated areas of southeastern PA. These commercial sketches provide a rare look at many of the businesses and business people of Pennsylvania before the 20th Century.

Chester County
-- From West Chester: -- Thomas T. Smith, Rupert & Philips

A History of the Reformed Churches in Chester County
(J. Lewis Fluck, 1892, 148 pages)
This book provides a brief history and description of several reformed churches in Chester County, PA. The churches included are: Brownback's, East Vincent, St. Peter's (Pikeland), St. Peter's (Warwick), St. Matthew's, St. Vincent, St. Paul's, Shenkel's, St. John's (Phoenixville), First Reformed (Spring City), "Sunnyside", "Fairview". It also contains biographical sketches of a number of pastors in these churches

Pastors Biographies:
Calvin U. O. Derr, D. W. Ebbert, Isaac Calvin Fisher, J. Lewis Fluck, John C. Guldin, Henry Hilbish, Jesse B. Knipe, Leighton G. Kremer, Silas P. Mauger, J. W. Meminger, J. A. Mertz, Maxwell S. Rowland, A. B. Shenkle, William Sorber, George S. Sorber, L. Dent Staumbaugh, William H. Stubblebine, A. R. Thompson, E. D. Wettach, A. D. Wolfinger, F. C. Yost

1871-1896 Quarto-Centennial History of the West Chester State
Normal School (Andrew Thomas Smith, 1896, 71 pages)

The Pedigree of William Griffith, John Griffith and Griffith Griffiths
(Thomas Allen Glenn, 1905, 101 pages)

Dodson Genealogy 1600-1907 (Thompson S. Ege, 1908, 439 pages)

The History of The Old Eagle School, Tredyffrin, in Chester County,
Pennsylvania (Henry Pleasants, 1909, 195 pages)
According to the title page this title is an account of this historic school and includes "alphabetical lists of internments in the graveyard and of German settlers in Chester County..." It provides some nice information on the early history of Chester County and its settlers.

Side Lights on the Bench and Bar of Chester County (Wilmer W. MacElree, 1918, 273 pages)
This volume is a collection of accounts and sketches of the justice system of Chester County. It includes many historical and biographical details some of which come from the colonial days of Pennsylvania.

Genealogy of Evans, Nivin, and Allied Families (Spetimus E. Nivin, 1930, 271 pages)

The Church of Saint Peter in the Great Valley, 1700-1940
(Harold Donaldson Eberlein & Cortlandt Van Dyke Hubbard, 1940, 208 pages)

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