There is no more exalted feature in the history of any locality than that which relates to the individual - whether he has pass from off the stage of a century ago, or whether we cross his path daily in the intercourse with or fellow-men. It is unfortunately true that while we may delight in the record of the lives of the former, and regret that there is not more known of what they were and what they accomplished in their day and generation, the almost cynical sneer comes as we glance over the meagre <sic> data which our fellow-citizens have gathered up to send down the paths of futurity as their legacy to the biography of the present. We wish it were otherwise, that just such a volume as the Publisher has in this instance essayed to give us would be as as thoroughly appreciated as the descendants of those herein named will in the days to come. Sneer, as some may, it is a noble undertaking - the preservation of the narrative of the life work of the many, although humble and meagre <sic> they may perchance to be. No two persons reach the same mark, or accomplish identical work, and yet every one has his mission to fill. To us who are living near the close of the nineteenth century, and have learned to revel in the researches into the past, the facts herein gathered should have a charm. The present will soon belong to the past, and thus, as the years roll on apace, the very biographical sketches here contained will be more highly treasured. We believe the Publisher has proven faithful to the trust, and the people of Dauphin County will find a fair record of its people. If the sketches of some who ought to have a place are here wanting, it is certainly not the fault of the Publisher - it is the individual. The former has sough to give a representative work; it is the neglect of the latter if this is not the case.
An introductory to this volume, a brief resume of the history of the county is given, with other data nowhere else to be found, and that feature is peculiar to this work. The genealogical information, meagre <sic> in some respects, will be of exceeding value to those in search of records of their ancestry. And, although some objections may be made to the orthography of many surnames, yet we give all as we find them in official documents.
In conclusion, as most of the biographies were submitted to those interested, errors of fact or date ought not to fall upon the Publisher, whom we firmly believe has used his best endeavors to give his subscribers a perfectly reliable as well as valuable book.
In presenting the Biographical Encyclopedia of Dauphin County to its patrons, the Publishers acknowledge, with gratitude, the encouragement and support their enterprise has received, and the willing assistance rendered in enabling then to surmount many unforeseen obstacles to be met with in the production of a work of such magnitude. To procure the material fori ts compilation, official records were carefully examined, newspaper files searched, manuscripts, letters and memoranda were sought, and a corps of competent solicitors visited every portion of of the county and secured information direct from the parties concerned. Great care was taken to have the sketches as free from error as possible, but we do not hold ourselves responsible for mistakes, as we charge nothing for the insertion of any printed matter contained int his book. In the compilation of the biographies we were ably assisted by William H. Egle, M.D., State Librarian of Pennsylvania and who is the author of the introductory chapter headed "Historical Review of Dauphin Count"; Rev. A. S. Dudley, D. D. of Cincinnati, Ohio; Harry L. Huber, of Dickinson College, Carlisle, PA, and Miss R. H. Schively, of Chambersburg, the latter being one of the most accomplished literary scholars of the Cumberland Valley.
J. M. RUNK & CO.