Marleta Childs
P. O. Box 6825
LUBBOCK, TX 79493-6825

     Since Pennsylvania was one of the original Thirteen Colonies, many early immigrants either settled there or disembarked in port and passed through on their way elsewhere. As a result, millions of Americans today have ties to the Keystone State. Because of genealogical links and the part Pennsylvania has played in the nation’s history, numerous researchers will be interested in two recent publications pertaining to that area.

     Fascinating in several ways, A BEAUTIFULLY SOLEMN SCENE: THE LEWISBURG CEMETERY, PENNSYLVANIA by Robert M. Dunkerly shows how the Union County burial ground is a wonderful place to appreciate both genealogy and history. Not only is the graveyard a place of reflection on family connections, but it is also a place that reveals the history of the town and furnishes examples of historical architecture. Because of these various aspects, the cemetery serves as a gauge by which local and national events impacted the town.

     Dunkerly provides a concise history of Lewisburg, the rise of rural cemeteries, the creation of the town’s graveyard and its expansion through the years, and various types of headstones. Also included is a walking tour, which furnishes detailed information about the different sections (like the veterans), original design features, and notable citizens laid to rest in the cemetery. Prominent persons buried here include congressmen, professional baseball players, a president of Bucknell University, a Medal of Honor winner, and more than 600 military servicemen who participated in the country’s major conflicts from the American Revolution through the Vietnam War. The author then supplies a complete list of all veterans and the wars in which they served. In addition, he furnishes a “Facts & Figures” section of trivia, which gives details like who had the most elaborate funeral in the cemetery’s history.

     As Dunkerly shows, grave markers are voices set in stone. A walk through a burial ground can be just as educational as a visit to a museum or a historic house. A BEAUTIFULLY SOLEMN SCENE: THE LEWISBURG CEMETERY, PENNSYLVANIA will be of interest to both genealogical and historical researchers.

     The 112-page volume has attractive color pictures on the front cover; numerous photographs of the cemetery, its surrounding buildings, and individual graves; a bibliography; an index; and end notes. It is priced at $18.00.

     A recent facsimile reprint is A HISTORY OF DELANO, PENNSYLVANIA, 1861-1931 by H. O. Moser. Originally printed in 1931, the volume pertains to the story of the author’s boyhood home town in Schuylkill County.

     Moser divides his work into two parts. The first and larger section focuses on Delano’s history. He begins with the founding of the town in 1861 and continues the narrative to the book’s publication date. Among the subjects discussed are the anthracite industry and the Panic of 1857, which nearly paralyzed it; railroads; community life; the incorporation of Delano Township; education and religion; and homecoming reunions in 1930. More than just a book of dates, places, and events, the work blends in the author’s personal memories from the 1880s to 1931.

     Biographical sketches, arranged alphabetically, make up the second and smaller part of the volume. Although some of the sketches are more detailed than others, most contain a wealth of information. A few recurring surnames are BANNAN, BILLMAN, BRETZ, BUTLER, DEPEW, ENGLE, FAUST, GOULDNER, HOFFMAN, MOSER, NEIFERT, SCHLIER, SWANK, WENTZ, and ZIMMERMAN. The author also provides a supplemental list of the names of Delano’s residents at the time of the book’s publication.

     In order to succeed in genealogical research, one must be familiar with the history of the area where one’s forebears lived. Anyone with ancestors from Schuylkill County will want to peruse A HISTORY OF DELANO, PENNSYLVANIA, 1861-1931.

     The 227-page volume contains numerous photographs of people, buildings, and the town’s natural surroundings. It is priced at $28.00.

     Both soft-cover books may be purchased by check, money order, Visa, MasterCard, Discover, or American Express from Heritage Books, Inc., 5810 Ruatan Street, Berwyn Heights, Maryland 20740. For phone orders, call toll free 1-800-876-6103; fax 410-558-6574; email; website To the price of each book, buyers should add the cost for shipping charges. For U. S. postal mail, the cost is $7.00 for one book and $2.50 for each additional copy.

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