SWALLOW, S.C., was born March 5, 1839, near Wilkes-Barre, Pa., in the historic and classic valley of Wyoming. He was of English-Irish ancestry. Receiving his preliminary education in the common schools in the vicinity of his home, he afterwards attended Wyoming Seminary, and completed his education at Susquehanna University. After his graduation, he at first entered upon the business of teaching, in which he continued engaged for five years, of which one year was passed at the seminary above named.
Having decided on adopting the law as a profession, Mr. Swallow entered as a student the office of that matchless counselor, Volney L. Maxwell. Under such skilled direction he would doubtless have obtained an exact and extended acquaintance with legal lore and practice, and been fitted to shine in this profession, had not circumstances and native inclination led him to give up the law and adopt the ministry as his future calling. Having passed through the essential course of instruction in divinity, he entered the pulpit of the Methodist Episcopal Church, and thus at length began what has since continued the active and useful work of his life. In recognition of his high standing in the ministry, Taylor University, of Fort Wayne, Ind., conferred on him in 1888 the degree of Doctor of Divinity.
Dr. Swallow long continued actie in the pulpit, filling a number of important posts in Central and Southern Pennsylvania. His high standing in the church subsequently brought him an elevation to the position of presiding elder, and for four years he acted in this capacity in the district of Altoona, Pa., a field of labor that embraces five or six counties. He has been twice elected a delegate to the General Conference of his church, the last time being during the meeting of this body for the year 1896.
Within recent years Dr. Swallow has exchanged the active labors of the pulpit and the supervising duties of presiding elder for literary labor in connection with the interests of the church. Four years ago he accepted the editorship of the Pennsylvania Methodist, an important organ of the denomination published at Harrisburg, which he edits with a judgment and literary skill that give its columns much weight in the counsels of the church. He also occupies the important post of superintendent of the Methodist publishing interests for Central Pennsylvania.
Aside from the more immediate duties of the ministry and the editors sanctum, Dr. Swallow has taken a vital interest in the great reform movements of recent times. In his younger days, when human slavery was the leading evil in this country, he ardently entered the ranks of the Abolitionists, speaking his sentiments with no uncertain voice. Later, when slavery had plunged the country into war, he ranked as an earnest patriot, and a fearless supporter of the government against the rebellion. He subsequently became equally active and earnest in another labor of abolition, that of the legalized liquor traffic, of which he has long been and continues an uncompromising advocate. Recognizing that intemperance is the most active and dangerous vice in this land, and one that leads to an endless array of crimes, diseases, and family and local evils, Dr. Swallow is an outspoken champion of the cause of prohibition of the sale of ardent spirits. His standing in this direction is so pronounced, and his services have been so useful, that a few years ago the Prohibition party tendered him the nomination for governor of the State.
Dr. Swallow is an able and fluent orator and wields the editorial pen with the trenchant power which has given him a widespread influence, not only in Harrisburg, where he has resided during the past ten years, but throughout the State. He is indeed favorably known throughout the Nation as a leading divine in this church, and an active advocate of the various reforms which now agitate the public mind.
Sidney, Indiana page 345-346