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GERMAN, John W., was born in Harrisburg, October 27, 1851. He is the son of Emanuel S. German, who was born in Harrisburg in 1821, whose father, Philip German, a native of Germany, came to Harrisburg in 1800, and established a brewery, celebrated for its "Cream Beer," and conducted it for many years.

Emanuel German, father of the subject of this sketch, established the first exclusively religious bookstore in the United States, at Harrisburg, in 1841 or 1842, and conducted it till 1878, when he was succeeded by his sons. He carried a stock of strictly church and Sabbath-school literature and his store was the headquarters of theological students. He lives retired from active life. He was first a Democrat, but upon the organization of the Republican party he joined that political organization, and has remained with it until the present time. He is a member of the Lutheran church. He married Sarah Jane Westfall, whose father came from Allegheny, and who was the proprietor for many years of the celebrated Black Tavern of Harrisburg, and who died in this city. They had seven children: Philip, of the Harrisburg bookstore; Sarah E., wife of Rev. J. S. Detweiler; John W.; Luther W., dentist, of Louisville; James W., auditor of the Pennsylvania Railroad Company, at Pittsburgh; Grace H., wife of Orville Chamberlin, of New Orleans, La.; Charles H. H., of Louisville, Ky., book-keeper; on daughter, Mary E., died in 1863.

John W. was reared in this city, and was educated in the public schools. He learned the trade of printer and subsequently entered his father's store, and became book-keeper. In 1878 he and his brother succeeded to their father's business, and continued it to 1882, when he went to Dakota. Returning to Philadelphia in seven months, he became agent for the Travellers' Insurance Company, of Hartford, Conn. In 1884 he was appointed special agent of the Mutual Life Insurance Company, of New York. January 12, 1886, he became one of the organizers of the Harrisburg Board of Trade, was elected the third secretary of the same, and has served in that office uninterruptedly since 1889. He was prominent in locating the Lalance & Grosjean Manufacturing Company and other industries in this city. Mr. German is prominently identified with the P. O. S. of A. He is active in the Republican party. He was married in 1877 to Miss Ida M. Wright, daughter of Theodore Wright, editor-in-chief of the Philadelphia Record. They had two children: Helen I., deceased, December 7, 1895, and John W. Jr. They are members of the Lutheran church.

Historical Review of Dauphin County

Transcribed by Gwen Bixler Drivon at for The Dauphin County, Pennsylvania Genealogy Transcription Project -

Date of Transcription: 13 Nov. 2000

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