Diary Collection, 1836-1978

Call Number:  MG-247

9 boxes     4.5 cubic ft.

Repository:  LancasterHistory (Organization); PV7

Shelving Location:  Archives South, Side 6

Scope and Content Note:  This collection contains diaries and journals of individuals from  Lancaster County. The diarists recorded daily events such as social activities, household chores, farm life, and business activities. Some writers copied published works and newspaper articles or recorded national events. Subjects that are mentioned include the Stock Market crash of 1929, “The Volstead Blues,” travel, World Wars I and II, weather, genealogy, and items of local interest.

Creator:  LancasterHistory (Organization);

System of Arrangement:  By name of individual or family.

John R. Bitzer (Box 9)

John J. Bowman, Sr. (Box 7)

Lizzie H. Gottshall (Box 9)

Anna M. Haverstick (Box 3)

Alexander Hays (Box 6)

Maria C. Heinitsh (Box 2)

Elsie Kreider (Box 4-6)

Lightner family (Box 3)

William Shand, Jr. (Box 9)

George W. Silvey (Box 1-2)

Abraham Herr Smith (Box 2)

Harry Smith (Box 7)

Unknown (Box 3)

Franklin Samuel Weinhold (Box 8)

Conditions for Access:  No restrictions, unless noted within the finding aid.

Conditions Governing Reproductions:  Collection may not be photocopied. Please contact Research Staff or Archives Staff with questions.

Language:  English

Source of Acquisition:  Acquisition information is noted in the finding aid if available.

Preferred Citation:  Diary Collection (MG-247), Name of diary set, Box #, Folder #, LancasterHistory, Lancaster, Pa.

Subject Headings:

Diaries (LHo-LOC gf2014026085)

Bitzer, John R.

Bowman, John J. (John Jacob) (LHo-LOC nb 90722971)

Gottshall, Lizzie H.

Haverstick, Anna M.

Hays, Alexander L. (b. 1793)

Heinitsh, Maria C.

Kreider, Elsie M. (1885-1984)

Lightner family.

Shand, William (1918-1946)

Silvey, George W.

Smith, Abraham Herr (1815-1894)

Smith, Harry (b. 1889)

Weinhold, Franklin Samuel.

Search Terms:


Processing History:  Boxes 1-7, Silvey to Bowman diaries processed by KR, 2005-2006; finding aid typed by CT, Spring 2007; and updated by HST, October 2007, July 2009, December 2009. This collection has been documented, preserved and managed according to professional museum and archives standards. Finding aid was created following DACS conventions.


Box 1

W. Silvey Diaries  Transferred from the library, September 1997. George W. Silvey was an operator for the Postal Telegraph Co. in Gap, Pennsylvania.

Silvey Book 1  G. W. Silvey, 1902-1937

“Items of interest, poetry, conundrums, and jokes and etc.—also death, marriages and miscellaneous.”

Collection of poems, quotes, and articles. Almost everything is copied from other sources. Dates are not consecutive through volume.

Jokes and stories:

Page 19: Poem called “The Volstead Blues”

Page 33: Commentary on the National Recovery Association

List of deaths on pages 257-260. No written entries after page 260.

Three obituaries pasted onto back cover from the Intelligencer Journal, 1934.


Silvey Book 2  G. W. Silvey, [     ]-1919

List of important dates in local and American history from 1502 to 1897, then 1918. Copies of newspaper articles from 1829-1893. Page 177 begins section of poetry. Diary entries begin on page 210 with 27 June 1901.

Book 2 Themes: Pennsylvania Railroad, trolleys, Edison phonographs and records, baseball, auto race

Key Events: Memorial at Valley Forge, San Francisco earthquake, letter from soldier in WWI home to Christiana

Copy of the 1893 Boyertown High School Commencement Program that took  place at the Rhoad’s Opera House.

Boyertown High School Commencement Program 1894 at Rhoad’s Opera House. 1894, 1895, 1899.

Boyertown High School Commencement Program 1898 at Rhoad’s Hall – one speech, “Man is born on a Battle Field.”

“Happenings” Continuation of list of dates, 1899-1905.

15 March 1904 burial of Mary Wyker murdered by her lover, Paul Weaver.

26 March 1904  Bessie Shelley replaces Mary Wyker as teacher at the Union School, p.211

14 January 1906 Train wreck in Coatesville, Pa. (PRR), p.212

24 January 1906 G. F. Schucker’s brother killed in Altoona (PRR), p.213

18 April 1906 San Francisco earthquake, p.216

3 June 1906 Memorial at Valley Forge, p.217

21 July 1906 Trolley cars running from Gap, p.217

17 October 1906 fire in Seneca, South Carolina, race-related, p.225

6 November 1906 Frank Day charged with statutory rape of Mary Fulton,  p.226

22 March 1907 Spelling Bee, p.235

10 August 1907 Baseball festival in Gap, p.240

26 October 1907 Thanksgiving proclamation by Roosevelt, p.244

26 October 1907 Auto races in Allentown, p.244

13 January 1908 Boyerstown Theater fire, p.246

18 April 1908 Trolley shooting in Paradise, PA; three arrested, one escaped

October 1908 Political Party “parties” for both Democrats and Republicans

10 September 1909 Report on Reunion of the Regiment

19 May 1910 Fred Shnepf had house wired with electricity

16 July 1910 Henry Portner sold his drug store equipment to Harry Raum

26 July 1910 Gap Hotel barn destroyed by fire

11 August 1910 Post Office received switchboard

9 January 1911 A. P. Kramer & Son Broom factory destroyed by fire

6 February 1911 Harry Raum sold drug store to A. W. Levan

1 October 1912 Scarlet Fever at Harvest Grove School

5 November 1912 Wilson elected President

1 January 1913 New parcel post system begins

30 January 1913 Frank Elmer purchased butcher wagon route from A. J. Marrow

5 November  1918 Reports of Armistice being finalized, waiting for Germans to agree

3 December 1918 Letter home from France (WWI), p.234

16 January 1919 Article on the beginning of prohibition

General information: Laid wire for trolley; Hammocks and fishing nets [made and] delivered; Baseball in Gap; Painted houses and fences; Races at Gap Hotel; Worked at the Post Office; Kept tabs on local businesses  (i.e., fires, sales, new equipment); Copies of whole pamphlets and articles from other sources; Lists of marriages, births, deaths (deaths are usually in red ink, sometimes with ages)

Silvey Book 3 G. W. Silvey, 1906-1920First pages filled with stories, poems, copies of newspaper reports from 1869 and 1919. Death reports, opinions, and copies of newspaper articles of interest to him from different sources showing title of paper, headline, date, and the article. Only dates given are the published dates. Some dates are out of order.

Diary entries begin page 77, 3 July 1920.Weather and temperature for 1906, pages 4-8

Weather and temperature for 1907, pages 9-13

Weather and temperature for 1908, pages 14-18

Weather and temperature for 1909, pages 19-23

Weather and temperature for 1910, pages 24-28

Weather and temperature for 1911, pages 29-33

Weather and temperature for 1912, pages 34-39

Weather and temperature for 1913, pages 39-43

Weather and temperature for 1914, pages 44-47

Chapter and verse for each day of the year, page 50-54

Subscriber account for the Lancaster Daily Intelligencer for 1920, page 58

Metropolitan Life Insurance account for 1920, page 59

Recap of “The Great War,” page 63-69

1910 Census, page 70

Cash collected by Howard L. Rutter during July 1918 per the town clock in Gap, pages 75-77

Price list on the P & R Railway, page 255

Diary entries which are not newspaper reports, scattered between articles on pages 79-574:

p.79 July 15 1920

p.86 July 16 1920, July 17 1920, July 18 1920

p.98 July 19 1920-July 20 1920

p.103 July 21 1920

p.107 July 22 1920

p.114 July 23-July 24

p.119 July 25

p.124 July 26 July 27

p.146 July 28-July 29

p.148 July 30

p.177 July 31-August 1

p.186 August 2-August 3

p.191 August 4

p.196 August 5-6

p.204 August 7-8

p.206 August 9

p.213 August 10

p.216 August 11-12

p.224 August 13-August 14

p.230 August 15-August 16

p.232 August 18-August 19

p.233 August 20

p.234 August 21

p.235 August 22-23

p.236 August 24-26

p.238 August 27-28

p.242 August 29-30

p.245 September 1

p.246 September 2-3

p.249 September 4-5

p.257 September 6

p.259 September 7-8

p.262 September 9

p.266 September 10-11

p.272 September 12-13

p.279 September 14

p.280 September 15

p.283 September 16-17

p.289 September 18-19

p.291 September 20-21

p.299 September 22-23



























Silvey Book 4  G. W. Silvey, 1920-1921

Originally tabbed pages A-Z found in front of book:

List of names, cards for Christmas

Lettergram rates as of 30 July 1920

Account balance in the Gap National Bank

The Gap Town Clock Fundraising information

List of salaries

Copied newspaper articles (complete with newspaper and date)

on pre-numbered pages. Recap articles from November 1918.

Pages 1-32: Bible verses for every day in 1920

Diary entries begin with 17 November 1920, page 33:

Continuing coverage of kidnapping of local infant (trial of Augusto Pascal)

Prohibition highlights

The Pierce murder

Pennsylvania Railroad

Automobile regulations (license and tags)

Diary entries end with 20 October 1921, page 576


Box 2

Silvey Book 5  G. W. Silvey, 1906-1922

Items of interest—important dates from 1802 to 21 February 1907

Weather reports 5 June 1906 to 6 February 1907

Bank accounts listing bond amounts and their serial numbers

List of the Postmasters in Bucks County for 1868

Newspaper articles copied verbatim (most with date and newspaper title)


Slaying of 7 year old Matilda Russo in New Jersey, 1921

Murder of Julius Planovsky in New York, 1921

Store fire in Gap, 1921

Women on the jury of murder trial in Norristown, 1921

Margery Rex condemns modern women’s choice to not marry, 1922, p.135

Diary entries 21 October 1921 to 9 September 1922:

Trolley work—activity and expenses

Mail delivery


Silvey Book 6  G. W. Silvey, 1922-1926

Diary entries 18 September 1922 to 20 July 1926

Newspaper articles copied verbatim (most with date and newspaper title)

Fall elections of 1924

Silvey Book 7  G. W. Silvey, 1933-1935

Account expenses for 1933 (notes and “mini” articles inserted among expenses)

Account expenses for 1934, 1935

pages 137-138 loose – detached prom book

pages 195-196 loose – detached prom book

pages 221-222 loose – detached prom book

missing pages 223–228

finishes on 19 September 1935, p.385


Author Unknown, 1887

Transferred from Library, Fall 2002.

Small black diary with leather cover. “Standard Diary No. 135”

Author wrote at least brief entries on every day of 1887. Discussed weather, working on a farm, and traveling for business. Writing is faded on many pages and difficult to see.

Book made for the year 1887, by the Cambridgeport Diary Co.

Includes calendar for 1887, weights and measures, weight per bushel of grain, interest table, population of principle cities, postage rates, Presidents of the U.S., vote for President in 1884, festivals and fasts, morning and evening stars, moon’s peugee & apogee, eclipses, chronological cycles, moon’s phases, tide table, interest laws of all states, rate of income investments, standard time, value of domestic and foreign coins, and the metric system.

Examples of names mentioned:

January 1  David [Gerleriche], Jacob Lengel

January 2  John Ensminger, Rev. Rumberger, Joseph L. Bean, Frank Lutz

January 3  Frank Lutz, David Gerleriche, “Lanna” Hershberger, Rev. Ruberge, John Miller, Sam Kettering, Jacob Blatt, Edwin Shuey

January 4  Joseph Bean, William Deamecht


Maria C. Heinitsh, June-July 1889. Gift of Mrs. William A. Schnader, 7 May 1954. Transferred from Library, February 2003.

Thin travel diary, good condition, handwriting fading but legible. Trip on the Pennsylvania Railroad while on a journey to Yellowstone.


A. Herr Smith

Smith Book 1           A. Herr Smith, 1836

Stitching out of book loose. Paper cover starting to tear from the seam. Please use the transcription which is located in LCHS Library.

Abraham Herr Smith (1815-1894) was born near Millersville. He graduated from Dickinson College in 1840 and upon passing the bar in 1842, he began to practice law in Lancaster. He was a member of the State house of representatives (1843-1844) and State senate (1845) before he served in the United States Congress (1873-1885).

1836  Philadelphia, discusses various theaters and what he saw

22 January 1836  A group debated the question, “Do the signs of the times indicate a dissolution of the Union?”

15 February 1836  Debate: “Ought those Free Masons who were subpoeaned before the Legislature of Pennsylvania have been punished for refusing to testify.”

6 April 1836  Climbed the State House steeple (Independence Hall) to look over the city. Describes a train ride home.

27 April 1836  Went to Columbia. Talks about a day in Strasburg and Williamstown. Haddington College. Visits different churches of different denominations around Philadelphia and describes his experiences.

25 June 1836  June 24 debate “Was Queen Elizabeth justified in the condemnation and execution of Mary Queen of Scots?”

September 6, 1836  Trip to Middletown: Railroad, Boat, Stage Travels to: Philadelphia; Frederick, Maryland; Baltimore; York; Lancaster; Middletown; Strasburg; Germantown, Pennsylvania

Smith Book 2   A. H. Smith Notebook, [1839]. Gift of Rev. D. G. Glass, 3 October 1941.

Date on cover is 1839. Tidbits of history, quotes, jokes, and trivia.

Individual items are not dated and are not in any obvious order.

Smith Book 3  A. H. Smith Travel Diary, August 1839

5 August 1839  Strasburg to Philadelphia by train, Philadelphia to New York

by train and steamboat, New York to Albany by steamboat, Albany to Saratoga. Only wrote on the first 18 pages of the diary – did not describe the entire trip.


Box 3

Lightner Journal  Gift of Lancaster Mennonite Historical Society, January 2001.

Lightner Folder 1   Lightner Family Biography and Genealogical Accounts

Some of the writing is pale and difficult to read.

The original is restricted. Please use the transcript in the Library.

The first family members mentioned are: Adam and Maud Lightner and their sons.

Nathaniel Lightner 1709 – 21 October 1782

William A. Lightner

Adam Lightner 25 October 1725 – 19 July 1783

Lightner Folder 2

Photocopy of the Lightner Family diary

Research notes trying to identify the author of the diary

31/2” floppy disk with the transcript of the diary


Anna M. Haverstick Diaries  Transferred from the library.

Haverstick Book 1   Anna M. Haverstick, 1957

Pre-printed yearbook with one page for each day’s entry. Loose pieces inserted throughout the book.

Newspaper:  Public Sale announcement for Henry Haverstick Estate. Intelligencer Journal. 21 February 1976.

An article entitled “Now It’s March.” No date, no paper reference.

Small diary of Betty A., four or five entries from 1940 and 1941

Notebook paper with a tally of rainy days for the year.


watching the mummer’s parade on TV

watching the Football Game on TV

a vacation in Italy in July

Halloween on October 30

Election Day, November 5

Thanksgiving, November 28

Christmas Eve Day and Christmas Day, December 24-25

Talks about daily life

Haverstick Book 2 Anna M. Haverstick, 1958

Pre-printed yearbook with one page for each day’s entry. Loose pieces inserted throughout book.

Church Bulletin from the U.C.C. Evangelical & Reformed Church


New Year’s Day, January 1

Groundhog Day, February 3

Easter, April 6

Halloween, October 30

Election Day, November 4

Thanksgiving, November 27

Christmas Eve Day and Christmas Day, December 24-25

Haverstick Book 3  Anna M. Haverstick, 1958-1959

New Year’s Eve, 31 December 1958

New Year’s Day, 1 January 1959

Groundhog Day, February 2

Easter, March 29

Halloween, October 31

Election Day, November 3

Thanksgiving, November 26 (in California)

Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, December 24-25

New Year’s Eve, December 31

Haverstick Book 4 Anna M. Haverstick, 1960

Groundhog Day, February 2

Easter, April 17

Election Day, November 8

Thanksgiving Day, November 24

Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, December 24-25

Haverstick Book 5 Anna M. Haverstick, 1961

Newspaper article about seatbelts in cars

Easter, April 2

Election Day, November 7

Thanksgiving Day, November 23

Haverstick Book 6 Anna M. Haverstick, 1962

In Osteopathic Hospital in early part of the year

Easter, April 22

Election Day, November 6

Thanksgiving, November 22

Haverstick Book 7 Anna M. Haverstick, 1964

Easter, March 29

Halloween, October 30

Election Day, November 3

Thanksgiving Day, November 26

Haverstick Book 8 Anna M. Haverstick, 1965

Placemat from the Plymouth Inn, Ocean City, New Jersey

Election Day, November 2

Thanksgiving Day, November 25

Haverstick Book 9 Anna M. Haverstick, 1966

Easter, April 10

Halloween, October 29

Election Day, November 8

Thanksgiving, November 24

Haverstick Book 10  Anna M. Haverstick, 1967

In hospital from August 13 to November 24

Easter, March 26

Election Day, November 7

Thanksgiving Day, November 23


Box 4

Elsie M. Kreider Diaries

Elsie M. Kreider was born on 20 March 1885 in Manor Twp. She was the daughter of Albert M. and Ida J. McLaine Harmon. She raised flowers and vegetables, which she sold at her stand at Fulton Market for more than thirty-six years. She and her husband, Willis B. Kreider (d. 1954), lived at 2192 Old Philadelphia Pike. Mrs. Kreider passed away on 18 December 1984 and was buried in the Centerville Cemetery on 20 December 1984. Gift of Miriam S. Harnish, 1 November 2002.

Kreider Folder 1  Elsie Kreider, No date

“The Economic Exercise Book, L. B. Herr, Lancaster, Pa.” In poor condition – Binding and cover falling apart. Very fragile. Used as a recipe book. Inside contains inserts of typed and handwritten recipes. Recipes written on pages sporadically, several blank pages between recipes. Recipes include pickled beets, red cross cake, and shoofly pie.

Kreider Folder 2  Elsie Kreider, 1915-1918

Item 1  Memorandum Book

Flip cover, black, 3.5” x 5.5”

Used as a diary 13 July 1915 to 20 May 1916

Talks about market and working the farm.

Voice of diary changes – sometimes Elsie Kreider is writing, other times Willis Kreider is writing.

Item 2  Memorandum Book

Flip cover, tan with imprinted etching of a train, 3.5” x 5.5”

Used as a diary 1 October 1917 to 31 December 1918

Talks about farm life, going to market, etc.

Kreider Book 1  Willis and Elsie Kreider, 1919

Watt & Shand diary. Pre-printed pages with set number of lines to write about each day. Entries in pencil, some starting to fade. Book owned by Willis Kreider, but both he and Elsie Kreider wrote the entries. Small pages with entries for December (no year given) found inside cover. Cover separated from textblock.

Kreider Book 2  Elsie Kreider, 1920

Watt & Shand diary. Entries primarily written by Elsie Kreider on farm life.

Kreider Book 3  Elsie Kreider, 1922

Watt & Shand “Universal Diary” with rates of postage, first aid tips, and business laws in brief.

Diary entries about life on the farm.

Kreider Book 4  Elsie Kreider, 1926

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diary” with printed trivia, fun facts, and suggestions; a list of the nation’s radio stations; and a list of baseball champions.

Diary entries on farm life.

Kreider Book 5  Elsie Kreider, 1929

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diary” with printed information about health, safety, playing bridge, etc.

Diary entries on farm life.

Kreider Book 6  Elsie Kreider, 1930

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diary”

Kreider Book 7  Elsie Kreider, 1931

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diary”

Kreider Book 8  Elsie Kreider, 1932

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diary”

Inside is a claim check for 2 parcels to be picked up at the Lancaster Train Station 25 November 1940.

Kreider Book 9  Elsie Kreider, 1933

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diary”

Inside front cover is a loose sheet of paper listing work done and payment due. Work done by Willis Kreider for Charles H. Beck, 1 April 1935.

Kreider Book 10  Elsie Kreider, 1935

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diary”

Kreider Book 11  Elsie Kreider, 1936

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diary”

Kreider Book 12  Elsie Kreider, 1937

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diary”

Kreider Book 13  Elsie Kreider, 1938

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diary”

Inside front cover were the following items:

Advertisement card for Weaver’s Book Store, 40 South Duke Street, 2 – 9536

Receipt from P. L. Rohrer & Brother, fertilizer and spray materials, 29 April 1940

Receipt from John Hoetzel to Willis Kreider for rent $35, 30 April 1930

Receipt from P. L. Rohrer & Brother, 29 April 1940

Kreider Book 14  Elsie Kreider, 1939

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diary”

Kreider Book 15  Elsie Kreider, 1940

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diary”

Kreider Book 16  Elsie Kreider, 1941

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diary”

U.S. enters WWII, 7 December 1941, but she makes no comment on Pearl Harbor, FDR, or war being declared

Kreider Book 17  Elsie Kreider, 1942

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diaries”

Inside back cover are two empty war ration books, one each for Elsie and Willis.


Box 5

Kreider Book 18   Elsie Kreider, 1943

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diary”

Inside is a letter from Gertie McLane in original envelope, 15 July 1945

Receipt, Willis Kreider purchased pots from F. H. Hardy, 20 January 1943

Two receipts for purchased plants and supplies from P. L. Rohrer & Brother, No date

Receipt for manure from Beechdale Duck Farm, 2 May 1944

Kreider Book 19  Elsie Kreider, 1944

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diary”

Inside is a letter from sister in original envelope, 11 July 1944

An empty envelope from the Post Office Department, 8 January 1948

Kreider Book 20  Elsie Kreider, 1945

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diary”

Inside is a receipt from Piersol Company, home furnishings, 14 October 1944

Kreider Book 21  Elsie Kreider, 1946

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diary”

Inside is a wedding announcement for Rebecca Stoner and John Jacob Oberholtzer, 13 March 1946

Kreider Book 22  Elsie Kreider, 1947

Desk Diary distributed by George W. Bard & Son, 423 West James Street, Lancaster, 2-4223 and 2-0095

Kreider Book 23  Elsie Kreider, 1948

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diary”

Inside is an undated article, “U. B. Church Given Large Sums”

Receipt from Piersol Company, 2 October 1948

Kreider Book 24  Elsie Kreider, 1949

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diary”

Inside news clipping with 1949 temps for summer

Kreider Book 25  Elsie Kreider, 1950

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diary”

Inside front cover is an empty envelope from Gertie McClane, Mechanicsburg, postmarked 20 March 1950

Kreider Book 26  Elsie Kreider, 1951

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diaries”

The writer is now 65 or 66 years old. Her acquaintances and passing away. Entries include work on the farm and her market stand.

Kreider Book 27  Elsie Kreider, 1952

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diaries”

At March 1 entry is an undated newspaper clipping, advertisement for Ivy–Dry to treat poison ivy rash.

Kreider Book 28  Elsie Kreider, 1953

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diaries”

Inside front cover are two pages from wall calendars. One from February 1952 and the other from February 1954. Dates circled and notes written down. Some entries are difficult to read because the ink ran in some places.

Kreider Book 29  Elsie Kreider, 1954

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diaries”

Husband had problem with his foot  starting January 27.  Bed-ridden February 1. Went to hospital February 16 and passed away February 17. Funeral arrangements and services February 18 to February 21. February 22 begins her life as a widow.

Kreider Book 30  Elsie Kreider, 1955

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diaries”

Remembers her husband’s death at the one year anniversary, February 17.

Inside back cover is an order slip – no company name, no date. Total for order is $69.30 and total owed is $33.05.

Kreider Book 31  Elsie Kreider, 1956

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diaries”

Inside front cover is an obituary for I. R. Kreider, No date.

Inside front cover is an article about gifts made to Strasburg Mennonite and Oreville Mennonite Home by the estate of I. R. Kreider, No date

Kreider Book 32  Elsie Kreider, 1957

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diaries”

Hurt herself hauling coal (pulled side muscles), November 26

Continues to feel poor on some days, unable to write entry, and writes “sick” on those days December 2, 4, 9, 11

Wrote that she was feeling better on December 21

Inserted in book at entries for December 13-16 is a wallet-sized black and white photograph (small creases in corners, one small tear) of a woman standing on front steps of a house. No mention of photograph in the entries, not identified.

Kreider Book 33  Elsie Kreider, 1958

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diaries”

Inside front cover is a pre-printed order slip from I. K. Umble & Company, grain, feed, coal, lumber, slate, and fertilizer, 5 June 1942

Kreider Book 34  Elsie Kreider, 1959

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diaries”

Inside are two newspaper clippings, inserted at February 2 and February 5. Both are titled “Prayer for Today.” 1959, 1960.

Newspaper clipping about deeds to be recorded, inserted at July 24-27, No date

Kreider Book 35  Elsie Kreider, 1960

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diaries”

Mrs. Kreider is now 75 years old.

Kreider Book 36  Elsie Kreider, 1961

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diaries”

Inside back cover: Inserted newspaper clippings, no paper name, no dates; “Police believe coffin reveals weird suicide”; “Prayer for today”

Glued to the pages (no paper name, no dates): “Miss Sarah Rettew is 95 years old”; Two different articles titled “Prayer for Today”; “New Church Named Hempfield EUB”; “Over 500 persons at Gamber viewing”; Partial newspaper clipping announcing that the Leamans were moving to Africa as medical missionaries.

Kreider Book 37  Elsie Kreider, 1962

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diaries”

New format for diary—now have cardboard covers and are ring-bound.


Box 6

Kreider Book 38  Elsie Kreider, 1963

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diaries”

No mention of the JFK assassination

Glued into back pages, two newspaper clippings, “Prayer for Today,” No date

Kreider Book 39  Elsie Kreider, 1964

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diaries”

Inside front pages is a newspaper clipping regarding debts owed to estates, No date

Decorative cross with lilies with the text: “Blessed Easter I know my Redeemer liveth – Job 19:25” is inserted at entries December 23-26

Glued to back pages: “A Lenten Thought” by Dr. Joseph Eckenrode, No date; Handwritten address for Mrs. H. R. Witmer; Typewritten copy of a song titled “Beautiful Star of Bethlehem”; Obituary of Aaron Witmer, No date; “Prayer for Today,” No date; Typewritten poem, “Step by Step”; Inserted in back pages is a receipt from Glick’s Plant Farms, 3 May 1966

Kreider Book 40  Elsie Kreider, 1965

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diaries”

Glued in front cover is a newspaper clipping celebrating Sarah Rettew’s 101st birthday, [15 December 1965]

Newspaper clipping announcing funeral services for Margie C. Harman Kauffman, died 5 January 1967, inserted at entries August 1-4

“Prayer for Today” taped into the back cover using a band-aid, No date

Kreider Book 41  Elsie Kreider, 1966

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diaries”

“Prayer for Today” inserted at August 13-16

Kreider Book 42  Elsie Kreider, 1967

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diaries”

Kreider Book 43  Elsie Kreider, 1968

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diaries”

Kreider Book 44     Elsie Kreider, 1969

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diaries”

Inserted in front cover is a newspaper clipping, “Mrs. Kauffman succumbs at 75,” No date

Obituary for C. A. Beaner, inserted at entries April 27-30, No date

Kreider Book 45  Elsie Kreider, 1970

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diaries”

Inserted in front cover: List of ailments and medical expenses, 23 July 1970; Two get well cards

Not feeling well and unable to write in diary, July 10-22

Went to hospital July 23 to August 14

Kreider Book 46  Elsie Kreider, 1971

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diaries”

Kreider Book 47  Elsie Kreider, 1972

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diaries”

Kreider Book 48  Elsie Kreider, 1973

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diaries”

Kreider Book 49  Elsie Kreider, 1974

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diaries”

Kreider Book 50  Elsie Kreider, 1975

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diaries”

Elsie Kreider is 90 years old

Kreider Book 51  Elsie Kreider, 1976

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diaries”

Inserted in front cover is a receipt for garage roof repair by Sam S. Smucker, Inc., 7 June 1977

Inserted in back pages: Handwritten order slip for Mrs. Kreider to make three flower arrangements for Mrs. Noah Martin, No date; List of phone numbers and names

Kreider Book 52  Elsie Kreider, 1977

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diaries”

Handwriting gets shaky at 21 March 1977 and is hard to read

No entries May 2-10

Note on May 11 that she was in the hospital

No entries May 12-16

Still in hospital May 17

At home May 18 and handwriting is easier to read again

Has trouble writing on the lines, the handwriting comes and goes

Kreider Book 53  Elsie Kreider, 1978

Watt & Shand “Ready Reference Diaries”


Hays Folder 1  Alexander Hays, 1873-1875

Transferred from the library. Front cover is falling off and first pages are loose.

Entries start on page 7 with 7 March 1873

Mr. Hays began the diary on his 80th birthday. Reflections on life to this point. Home life with daughters and grandchildren, domestics, and servants.

The daily life, etc. of an older gentleman, 7 March 1873 to 8 July 1873

Entries for 1875 begin on page 60, March 7 to July 11

Pasted onto page 99:  Newspaper clipping, No date; Obituary of Judge Hays, Millersville B.O.T.

Inserted at page 99: A copy of a newspaper article from The Daily Press, 13 November 1875, about the feast of All Saints. No mention directly of the Judge or his family.


Box 7

Bowman Diaries

Purchased at the Ezra Bowman Family Estate book auction, 30 April 2005.

John J. Bowman, Sr. was the son of Ezra F. Bowman, founder of the Bowman Technical Institute in Lancaster. The family operated a jewelry shop and the oldest school for watchmakers in the United States.

Bowman Book 1  John J. Bowman Sr., Volume 2, 19 May 1927 to 27 August 1929

A record of life meant to be passed to his children.

Family life, work, social and political groups, travel

Bowman Book 2  John J. Bowman Sr., Volume 3, 28 August 1929 to 4 January 1932

Horological Institute of America, Lemon St., Duke St., Stock Market crash

Bowman Book 3  John J. Bowman Sr., Volume 4, 4 January 1932 to 5 July 1938

Report on a bank panic, 18 January 1932

Stock market, summer camp, Lititz

Writing stopped from 16 January 1934 to 10 October 1935

Talks about reason for break, dealing with depression, 10 October 1935

Bowman Book 4  John J. Bowman Sr., Volume 5, 5 July 1938 to 19 April 1944

Mentions FDR and war with Japan,  9 December 1941

Critical of home defense, FDR, and Churchill

R.C.A. plant coming to New Holland February 1942

Two inserts holding picture postcard of [John Jr.] between entries for 23 August 1942 and 30 August 1942

Caricature cut out by Luetta dated 1939

Bowman Book 5  John J. Bowman Sr., Volume 7, 1 October 1945 to 7 July 1946

More about children’s activities – where they live, when they visit, what they’re doing, etc.

Bowman Book 6  John J. Bowman Sr., Volume 8, 19 July 1946 to 12 July 1947

Carl Shurz Foundation and Landis Valley Museum, 13 December 1946

Bowman Book 7  John J. Bowman Sr., Volume 9, 13 July 1947 to 16 December 1947

Took a tour of the Ephrata Cloister, 8 September 1947

Trolley cars being dismantled, Landis Valley Museum would like to preserve one, 23 September 1947

Association of Watch & Clock Collectors, 26 September 1947

Landis Valley Museum and trolley, 3 October 1947

Musser Park, 4 October 1947

Bowman Book 8  John J. Bowman Sr., Volume 10, 17 December 1947 to 18 April 1948

WGAL (radio), 6 January 1948

Income tax, 11 March 1948

Bowman Book 9  John J. Bowman Sr., Volume 11, 19 April 1948 to 11 September 1949

Landis Valley Museum, 20 April 1948

Wheatland restoration, 2 May 1948

Bowman Book 10   John J. Bowman Sr., Volume 12, 11 September 1949 to 26 July 1952


Harry Smith Diaries

Gift of John and Julia McDivitt, October 2007. (John is the grand-nephew of Harry Smith.)

Harry Smith [b. 1889] was the second child of John R. and Alice Smith. He is listed as a laborer in the 1911-1912 Directory of Lancaster City and as a bricklayer in 1931, and was living at the family home at 463 S. Plum Street, Lancaster. In 1915, Harry set out on the first of many journeys across the country.

He was very thorough in recording the names of the towns he passed through, his daily mileage, and modes of travel. Although he sometimes noted where he lodged or for whom he worked, he did not record many observations along the way. He traveled mostly on foot, but did ride the train and accept rides from friendly strangers. During one adventure, he stayed in California for a while and worked near the offshore oil fields. On another trip, he was in Texas and worked his way through the Midwest to Canada and helped with the harvest along the way.

Harry Smith Book 1           1915

Harry Smith Book 2           1915-1916, 1920-1921

Harry Smith Book 3           [1920]

Harry Smith Book 4           1923

Harry Smith Book 5           1922, 1935-1936



Box 8

Franklin Samuel Weinhold Diaries


Weinhold Book 1


Box 9

William Shand, Jr. DiariesGift of Daniel Harrington, September 2009.These are the diaries of William Shand, Jr. written during the summers of 1935, 1937 and 1938 in Europe, in 1939 on a trip in the western U.S. and in 1945 on the Pacific Ocean as an Army researcher. “William Shand, Jr., was born October 5, 1918, in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, second son of William and Dorothy (Schaeffer) Shand. After attending Franklin and Marshall Academy and Phillips Academy, Andover, Massachusetts, from which he was graduated second in his class, he entered Princeton University with the class of 1940. His many achievements in college were climaxed by his graduation as valedictorian of the class, with highest honors in chemistry.” The full biography is available in A Climber’s Guide to the High Sierra (1954), edited by Hervey H. Voge and at www.yosemite.ca.us/library/climbers_guide/william_shand_jr.html 

Shand Folder 1  1935, 1937

These diaries record trips with Experiment in International Living, primarily to Germany and Austria with daytrips to France and Switzerland. 1935Departed New York on June 27 with Mrs. Sturley, group leader, and fourteen co-travellers named on page 3. Aboard ship, swam in canvas pool, studied German, sang, danced, discussed Hitler, attended movies. July 5-7  Anchored in Cuxhaven, Germany; overnighted in Hamburg. Onward to Freiburg after seeing propaganda film (page 14). Billeted with Familie Göte. July 9-28  Daily morning classes at university with leisure time, meals, enjoying and playing games with the family, hiking in the Black Forest, attending many operas, concerts and services in the cathedral, cycling to Lake Constance (July 19-22) and ending with farewell banquet and “Deutschland Uber Alles” and farewell dinner with the family. July 29-August 3  Left Freiburg for Ulm, Augsburg, Munich, Germany and Salzburg, Austria. Sightseeing in each, attending operas and witnessing the Nazi salute. August 4-18  In Bad Ischl and Bad Aussee, Austria. Mountain climbing; exploring salt mines, ice caves, waterfalls, snowfields, glaciers and mineral finds; folk dancing, partying and shopping. Mentions Uncle Donald and Mr. Watt. August 19-24  Falt-boating down the Danube from Linz to Vienna, overnighting in barns and hostels, sightseeing along the way in Melk and Durnstein.August 25-28  To Vienna, Prague, Dresden and Berlin, taking in museums, palaces, parliament and war memorials. August 29  The diary ends “on the boat-train to Cuxhaven.”  1937Departed New York on June 18 with Dr. Elizabeth Dorn, group leader, and twelve others named on pages 166-7. June 18-25  Crossing the Atlantic from New York to Brennerhanau on the Europa and arrived by train at Brenner, Hanover and Freiburg. June 26-July 28  Lived with German family, Göte, for the second time. Attended services in cathedral, played games, visited beer halls and went swimming, biking and sightseeing with them. Attended classes at the Alte Universität, studying German, opera, architecture, etc. (June 28-July 22) Travelled to Strasbourg, France and Basel, Switzerland for city tours; climbed local Black Forest mountains; practiced national anthem before visiting Hitler youth group (July 7); exposed to militancy of 14-year-old German Hitler “Jugenführer” (youth leader, July 11); attended Wagner’s Ring Opera; excursions to silk manufacturing, children’s hospital, festivals and Roman ruins. July 29-31  To Munich, Garmisch and southern Germany for climbing in the Bavarian Alps (Alpspotze-Zugopitze, etc.). August 1-3  To Salzburg, Austria for sightseeing, performance of “Yoderman,” visited Konigsee and Berchtesgarden and brother, Jack, who arrived with another group. August 4-15  To Bad Aussee for mountainclimbing—vividly described the terrain, geology, height, route and time needed to ascend specific peaks. Other activities included singing, dancing, swimming and a farewell fest. August 16-19  To Linz, Austria. After a city tour, put falt boats together in preparation for a float trip on the Danube River to Vienna, stopping at St. Nikola, Melk and Durnstein. August 20-22  In Vienna. Sightseeing and climbing. August 23  To Berlin. Sightseeing. August 24  Train to Brenner. There learned of Bill Hull’s drowning while on a falt-boat trip (a fellow traveller of 1935). After the trip journal are the following added notes:pp. 73-78  40 verse poem in Germanpp. 79-81  words to songs with illustrationsp. 159  List of booksp. 161  names and addressesp. 163  sketch of Cork Harbor and list of world’s highest mountainsp. 164  wine listpp. 166-167  names and addresses of co-travellerspp. 168-169  German-Austrian names and addressesp. 170  cryptic notes covered more fully in August entriespp. 171-174, 176-177  mountain statistics and sketches, expenditures, train schedules, book titles, etc.p. 175  quotations of Hitler and Reichsleiter Note addressed “Dear Bill” from Stacy, found between pages 71-72.

Shand Folder 2     1938, 1939

These diaries record a 1938 trip to Austria and Switzerland, primarily for mountain climbing, and a 1939 trip to the western United States. 1938Departed New York on June 17 aboard Deutschland, arriving in Cherbourg, France on 23 June 1938. June 23  Sightseeing and overnight in Paris. June 24  Train to Neuchatel, Switzerland. June 25-27  To Bern. Visited with Alpenklub president, fed bears, Alpen Museum, Bern in Blumen parade and bought mountain climbing gear. June 28  Trained and bussed into the Swiss mountains, citing in detail the many peaks he and his companions (generally by first name only) climbed, the weather and terrain, the routes they took, food, housing, people they met (including occasional reference to dislike of Germans—see July 18), singing, dancing and roughhousing. July 26-August 1  Onward to Zermatt to engage a guide and prepare to climb the Matterhorn (part of it at night by lantern light) and Monte Rosa. Returned to parade, fireworks and fire in the hills. August 2-16  Journeyed into Austria and Germany by train and bus for sightseeing in Innsbruck; more mountain climbing from Bad Aussee; opera in Salzburg; museums in Munich; to Dinkelsbuhl, Wiesbaden, Mainz to see the catherdral; to Köln by Rhein steamer; and along the way wining and dining. One mention of concentration camps on August 5. August 17-18  Arranged for steamer tickets and to Cuxhaven, from which boat sailed about 12:30. Diary ends on page 76. Added notes follow:pp. 78-79  key to film contentp. 80  route from Grindwaldpp. 82-84  list of mountains and altitudespp. 87-88  Mt. Whitney descriptionp. 90  list of mountain peaksp. 158  expenses after Salzburgpp. 164-165  list of foodpp. 166-167  poetrypp. 168-170 list of mountains and heightspp. 172-175  accountspp. 176-178  names and addressesp. 179  book titles Loose papers with the diary include:description of Bob Brinton in Davis, California3 x 5 card with names and addressesannotated New York Times item about Carlin“The Place where Brother Bill was Killed,” 30 January 1992  1939This diary records a two-month trip by William Shand, Jack S. and Jack H. in a Chevy station wagon from Lancaster throughout the western United States, Canada and Mexico. They camped, stayed in tourist accommodations, park cabins and with friends. An asterisk (*) indicates a very detailed description of the place or event. June 22-25  Travelled long days westward through Pennsylvania, Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Iowa and into the Badlands of South Dakota. June 26-30  After viewing Mount Rushmore and being sculpted, they travelled onward to Devil’s Tower, Yellowstone* and the Tetons. June 30-July 1  Climbed Grand Teton. July 2-3  Toured Anaconda Mines* in Butte, Montana and saw a rodeo and American Indian dances. July 4-12  In Glacier Park and Waterton Lakes Park, Edmonton and Calgary in Canada. Sightseeing and attending a stampede.* July 13-16  To Banff and Lake Louise,* returning to U.S. in Idaho. July 17-18  To Spokane, Washington; Grand Coulee Dam (being built); through the Cascades to Seattle. July 19-20  Via Tacoma, Olympia and Port Angeles, Washington to ferry to Victoria,* British Columbia for a day and return to Olympic Peninsula for the night. July 21-24  To Mt. Ranier* and onward via Portland, Vancouver and Bonneville Dam to Mt. Hood.* July 25-28  South along the Oregon* coast to Crater Lake and down the California coast to San Francisco and Berkeley. July 29-August 1  Sightseeing at Treasure Island, International Fair and San Francisco. August 2-4  Northward through Sacramento, Placerville and Tahoe, California to Reno and Carson City, Nevada and back to Yosemite* in California. August 5-9  Returned to California coast, south on Big Sur Highway, Santa Barbara and Santa Monica to Los Angeles, Pasadena for sightseeing and visiting Aunt Fanny. August 10-11 To San Diego, into Mexico briefly and touring El Centro, Coronado and Salton Sea.* August 12-13  Via San Bernadino and Barstow, California, across the Mohave Desert to Las Vegas, incomplete Boulder Dam and Lake Meade. August 14-18  Visited Zion National Park, Bryce Canyon and Grand Canyon, the Painted Desert and Petrified Forest. August 19-23  Witnessed American Indian parade and show at Gallup, New Mexico* and pueblos in the Albuquerque*-Santa Fe area. Also visited Margaret and Don Watt. August 24-26  Northward to Colorado Springs, Denver and Evergreen. Visiting friends. August 29-31  To Lancaster via Kansas, Missouri, Illinois, Ohio, West Virginia and Maryland with few sightseeing stops along the way. Notes at end of diary include alternate routes (pages 158-159), rules and regulations (pages 160-163), gas used (page 166), expenses (pages 167-175), and names and addresses (pages 177-179). Loose papers include:3 x 5” card with names and occupationsdescription of Bob Brinton in Davis, California

Shand Folder 3     1945

This diary records the activity of William Shand, Jr. on confidential orders with the military as a researcher dealing with chemical warfare and its uses in New Guinea and the Philippines in 1945. January and February entries mention people that he met enroute and in consultation, the military facilities, the surrounding landscape and endless military abbreviations and technical terms. March to May entries describe actual bombing of chemical agents and the effects, as well as occasional off-duty relaxation. May 27-June 27  In Australia for consultation about the experiments and for pleasure, including a visit to Dr. Cappie Shand.  June 28-September 15  In Pelilieu, Oceana and the Philippines exploring caves, sometimes at great risk, testing for various operations as well as their use by the Japanese. September 15-October 6  Research reports completed, boarded ship, Sea Flasher, sailing 7,187 miles from Manila to Seattle. Throughout the diary are detailed descriptions of the countryside, the natives and their villages, living conditions, rice growing and war-torn Manila. At the back of the diary are:list of names and addresses (1 page)principle landings in the Pacific with dates (2 pages)arrivals, departures, destinations with dates (3 pages)notes about books, places and expenses (2 pages)calculations and drawings (5 pages)list of bases and APOs (1 page)list of names and addresses (4 pages)dates (1 page)


Lizzie H. Gottshall Diary

Gift of Rosena Barto Stewart and Roberta Stewart Clark, 8 June 2009.

This 3 x 4” volume was printed for 1868 and records the activities of Lizzie H. Gottshall, as well as those of an unknown young man. There are scribblings throughout, perhaps of a child. Lizzie was living in East Hempfield Twp., Lancaster County at the time this diary was kept.

Gottshall Folder 1   Lizzie H. Gottshall, 1868, 1870-1871

The content in blue ink is by Lizzie H. Gottshall in 1870-1871. She describes attending meetings in Landisville, Neffsville, Rohrerstown and Manheim; household chores; shopping in Lancaster; and visiting and partying with many friends. Also recorded on “Cash Account, September” page are names of people for whom she worked and her earnings. On November 22 and November 30 to December 3, she tells of a falling out with David Brubaker and being escorted by David Martzall.  Lizzie lists names of friends and family on February 10, 11 and 20; April 13 and 16; May 7; October 17, 29 and 30; November 12, 26 and 27; December 20; memo/cash page; and cash account pages. They are as follows: Emma Snavely, Amanda Shriner, Harry Landis, Mary Snavely, Adam Hershey, Kate Laurence, Cousin Amos Hershey in Petersburg, Cousin Annie Hershey, Mary Lutz, Mary Williams, Lizzie Madder, Molly Madder, Sarah Weaver, Lizzie Lutz, David Graybill, Harry Gottshall, Harvey Snavely, Amanda Graybill, Aaron Buckwalter, Daniel Landis, Henry [Hart], Salinta Johnson, Fannie Graybill, Annie Summy, Amos Minich, Annie Minich, Harry Hershey, Uncle John Hershey, Clayton Groff, Andrew Brubaker, Landis Binkley, Annie Burkhart, Barb Johnson, Cousin Harry Gottshall, Uncle Peter Gottshall and Uncle Andrew Hershey. Her beloved friends were Lizzie Snavely, Martha Evans and Annie Snavely. Writings of the young man in 1868, apparently a relative of Lizzie, tell of his journey to Ohio and West Virginia doing farm work, “flittin” with beer, digging ditches, laying tiles, going to a fortune teller, carpentering and learning brick-making. He writes to and visits friends and relatives: Uncle Joseph Gottshall, John Gottshall, Cousin Jacob Gottshall, Samuel Lutz, Benjamin Graybill, Amos Graybill, Eliza Smith, Mary Hoffman, Harry Snavely, Cousin Amos Hershey in Petersburg, Cousin Annie Hershey, Harry Hershey, Uncle John Hershey, Cousin Harry Gottshall, Uncle Peter Gottshall and Uncle Andrew Hershey.


John R. Bitzer Diary  Gift of Margaret Koser, 11 November 1993, and transferred from the Document Collection, 10 June 2014.

Bitzer Folder 1  Transcription of John R. Bitzer’s Memorandum of a Prospecting Trip through Washington Territory, 1861. He describes leaving San Francisco by steamship on June 29 and the journey to Portland, Oregon, and continues with detailed observations until August 4. He then sent the diary home to his brother to give family and friends an idea of the prospector’s life.

Bitzer Folder 2  Restricted. Do Not Use. Original of John R. Bitzer’s Memorandum of a Prospecting Trip through Washington Territory, 1861. June 29-August 4.