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Preface to 1983, 1991 Editions


Except for brief sketches of the early history of Lake Township, no previous history of Harvey’s Lake has been available. With few exceptions, this history has been drawn from original source material and interviews with Lake residents. The Benjamin Harvey story is adapted from Oscar Jewell Harvey’s The Harvey Book and A History of Wilkes-Barre and Wyoming Valley. The Bobby Edwards murder case summary is adapted from The Pennsylvania Sampler by Paul B. Beers and from the newspaper records of the time. The chapter entitled Between the Wars is generally based on the minutes of the Harvey’s Lake Protective Association.

Contributors of photographs used in this publication include Francis Ambrose, Ruth Avery, Jeannette Gosart Denmon, Genevieve Wintersteen Fisk, Esther Grey, Donald and Shirley Hanson, Mabel Hoover, Stanley Hoyt, Ethel Anderson Kocher, Dorothy Lutinski, Ed Miller, Charlotte Anderson Payne, Benjamin and Marion Rood, Grace Sutton, Ed Wagner, and Mary Ann Wintersteen. Additional views were provided by Ace Hoffman Studios and Mebane Printing Company. There were also views contributed by Catherine Condaras from the Estate of Martha Higgins Condaras and by John B. Van Horn from the Estate of R. R. Van Horn. The author also acknowledges the contribution of William J. Harris, whose early photographic work at the Lake was masterful.

A number of contributors provided interviews and other support which all contributed to this work. Special thanks are due to Francis Ambrose, William Casterline, Elwood Davis, Eddie Day, John Gosart, John A. Griffiths, Jr., Donald and Shirley Hanson, Edwin Roth, Mildred Shaver, Fred Swanson, Alice Slomowitz, Daniel A. Waters and Dick Williams.

The former Executive Director of the Wyoming Historical and Geological Society, Dr. William H. Siener, and the Librarian for the Society, Margaret E. Craft, generously allowed me to scour the Society’s collections for original manuscript and source material. The manuscripts and diaries of George R. Wright were invaluable. The Record of the Times, a semi-weekly newspaper published between 1878 and 1919, covered the news of rural communities and supplied considerable source material for this history. The author is thankful to the Dallas Post for the freedom to rummage through its fifty years of back issues.

The author is grateful for the patience and assistance of Mary Shevock and Anne Marconi who typed the almost unending drafts of this work. The author also thanks John Rygiel and Rygiel Studios whose special magic with often difficult photographic pieces has produced a wonderful photographic record of Harvey’s Lake.

Fires at the Lake and floods in the Wyoming Valley have destroyed much of the documentary and photographic history of the Lake. Too often in the last three years, as this work was in progress, it was a losing race with death to capture the memories of a precious generation from the Lake’s Golden Era. Friends who contributed so much to this work, Ralph H. Kocher and Benjamin S. Rood, can only review it in spirit. This history could not have been written without the rich hours of oral history provided by Ralph H. and Ethel A. Kocher. No source material could have contributed their vivid memory, humor, and love that sustained the author in completing this work. Finally, if there ever was a spiritual bond of man and Lake, it was Benjamin S. Rood, whose many splendid hours with the author are also reflected in this work.