Browse Encyclopedia

The Cumberland County Historical Encyclopedia is an expanding publication on the history of the Cumberland County. Covering a wide range of topics and the entire Cumberland County geographic region, the Encyclopedia seeks to be an initial entry point to those interested in the County's history. Entries seek to provide a list of resources available as well as showcasing some of the Cumberland County Historical Society's own collections.

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Benjamin Franklin

Intellectually, Benjamin Franklin was a very gifted person, with only a few years of academic schooling, he was a self-taught individual. Franklin was born in Boston, Massachusetts, one of ten children of a soap and candle maker.

Henry Ganss

Photo portrait of Rev. Henry G. Ganss

Henry George Ganss (22 February, 1855-25 December, 1912) was a Roman Catholic priest of the Diocese of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, as well as a musician and historian. For twenty years he served as pastor of Saint Patrick’s parish in Carlisle, and then he became pastor of Saint Mary’s parish in Lancaster.

Hamilton Library Association

Photo of the Hamilton Library Building with group of men in front. Building decorated with bunting for the 1909 Old Home Week.

James Hamilton, Jr., founder of the Hamilton Library and Historical Association, was born in Carlisle, Pennsylvania on October 16, 1793, the only son of Judge James Hamilton (born 1752 in Belfast, Ireland, died February 13, 1819) and his wife Sarah Thomson, daughter of Rev. William and Susanna Ross Thomson.

Emmeline Hamilton (1804-1823)

Emmeline and her brother and sisters lived their lives in this three-story brick house on West High Street near the corner of Pitt Street in Carlisle.

Emmeline Veazey Hamilton, daughter of Judge James and Sarah Hamilton, was born on December 8, 1804, and although she lived for only eighteen years, her name was carried on in her relatives’ families for several generations. (Emmeline Hamilton Parker Grubb, Emmeline Cruse and Emmeline Bradish.)