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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J. P. Lyne (1800-1862): Coppersmith and Hardware Merchant

Scan of Lyne advertisement in the American Volunteer, December 19, 1850.

Fifty years after J. P. Lyne went out of business, an elderly man reminiscing about the Carlisle of his youth still remembered that “a mammoth wood and gilded sign of a padlock stood in front of J. P. Lyne’s hardware store.”Lyne worked as a coppersmith in Carlisle in the 1820s and 1830s, but by 1838 he had become a hardware merchant. The 1838 Triennial tax assessment listed “J. P. Lyne & Co., merchants.” A partnership with George W. Sheaffer was dissolved in 1845.

Mansion House Hotel

Photo of the Mansion House Hotel

A landmark in Carlisle, the “Mansion House Hotel” operated on the south west corner of West High and Pitt streets from the late 1830s until the 1920s. Inns on that site had housed travelers since the days of the Revolutionary War. The first tavern on the site was kept by James Pollock in the eighteenth century.

Frank Elmer Masland Jr. (1895-1994)

Photo of Frank Elmer Masland Jr.

Frank Elmer Masland Jr. was a prominent industrialist, conservationist, explorer, philanthropist and pillar of the Carlisle community throughout the twentieth century. Born to Frank Elmer Masland and Mary Esther Gossler on December 8, 1895, he was the grandson of Charles Henry Masland, founder of the Carlisle carpet company C. H. Masland & Sons.

Dorothea McKenzie (1737-1805)

Scan of recording of James

Dorothea McKenzie, the daughter of a Quaker ironmaster, became a widow at the age of 38, never remarried, and, until her death, ran a genteel boarding house in Carlisle with the help of her slaves. Dorothea’s father, Thomas Maybury, established the Green Lane Forge in the Perkiomen Valley in what is now Montgomery County, Pennsylvania as well as the Hereford Furnace. Her mother, Sophia Rutter, was a descendant of Pennsylvania ironmaster, Thomas Rutter.[1]

Cormick McManus: Irish Tailor

Photo of McManus’s 1812 tailor bill to William Line lists the prices charged for the clothing he made for Line.

Although Cormick McManus, a tailor, was one of a number of Irish Catholics who immigrated to America, settled in Carlisle, and was naturalized in the early decades of the nineteenth century, he was memorable enough to be written about in the reminiscences of several Carlisle natives. The tailor shop of Cormick McManus on West High Street, wrote James Miller McKim, was:

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