SIBLE, JOHN S, coal, wood and ice dealer, Harrisburg, Pa., was born near Orcut Creek now called Willawana P. O., Bradford county, Pa., September 11, 1843. He is a son of the late Peter and Abbie (Mercy) Sible. Peter Sible was a farmer and spent most of his life in Bradford county. His family consisted of eleven children, of whom four are living: William residing in Harrisburg; Nancy, widow of the late Nathaniel Seeley, of Bradford county; Andrew J., of Hawkeye, Iowa; and John S. The father died at the residence of his son John S., in 1879; the mother died in 1889 in Bradford county.
John S. Sible resided in his native township up to the age of nineteen and attended the public schools. In the fall of 1861 he removed to Harrisburg, where he has eversince resided. He was in mercantile business here until 1866, when he opened a coal and wood yard. In 1876 he added the ice business to his undertakings, purchasing the old Crook ice house on the Susquehanna river, and making to it large and substantial additions. In 1881 Mr. Sible erected his large and commodious ice houses at Dauphin, Middle Paxton township. About 1890 he demolished the buildings on the Susquehanna river and built large and convenient structures at Cove Station, Perry county. The capacities of his ice houses at Cove Station are as follows: they consist of nine rooms, each forty by eighty feed, with thirty-eight feet between floors, and storage capacity of twenty-eight thousand tons of ice. These houses are built according to the best known methods of construction in the United States. They are equipped with three double elevator for planing the ice-blocks as they go to the place of storage. There is also a cross elevator running three hundred and seventy-five feet in length and fifty-five feet in height, for the purpose of carrying off the refuse ice.
Mr. Sible has also erected at these points six tenement houses for the use of the men and their families employed by him in cutting, storing and shipping the ice. This plant was erected at a cost of $50,000, and is the most extensive and the best arranged and equipped establishment of the kind in the country. It give employment in the season to from one hundred to three hundred men, and is capable of housing 5,000 tons of ice per day. The Dauphin hoses have a capacity of 7,500, with appliances for handling and storing 1.000 tons per day, both houses having a storage capacity of 35,000 tons of ice. The lakes which furnish the ice at Cove Station cover an area of thirty-two acres, and are fed by five mountain streams, ranging from two hundred to fifteen thousand feet in length, coming direct from the mountain woods, and perfectly free from impurities. Mr. Sible has erected a handsome and commodious three-story residence, overlooking the lakes, which he has stocked with fine fish; and here he and his family pass the summer months. In1895 Mr Sible purchased an extensive coal yard on the Reading railroad, which gives him the privilege of purchasing and handling all or any of the best kinds of coal.
He was one of the committee appointed to solicit stock subscriptions to build the People's Bridge, and is now a director of the enterprise. He has efficiently and faithfully served as president of the City Rescue Mission since its organization. He has been extensively engaged in contracting for excavating work; prominent among these contracts is the grading of the old reservoir grounds.
Mr. Sible was married in Bradford county May 1, 1869, to Emma, daughter of Mills and Sarah Carr, old and honored residents of that county. They have had four children: Edith C., Helen, who died when eight years old, Alma and John Sidney. Mr. Sible and his family are all members of Grace Methodist Episcopal church. His political views are Republican.
If success is a just measure of ability, Mr. Sible must be adjudged to be a man of great business talent and skill. By wisely directed efforts he has risen to prominence, occupying an enviable position as a citizen and man of affairs.
Peggy McNeal, for the Dauphin County,
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