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Below is a family biography included in the Biographical Annals of Cumberland County, Pennsylvania published in 1905 by The Genealogical Publishing Company.  These biographies are valuable for genealogy research in discovering missing ancestors or filling in the details of a family tree. Family biographies often include far more information than can be found in a census record or obituary.  Details will vary with each biography but will often include the date and place of birth, parent names including mothers' maiden name, name of wife including maiden name, her parents' names, name of children (including spouses if married), former places of residence, occupation details, military service, church and social organization affiliations, and more.  There are often ancestry details included that cannot be found in any other type of genealogical record.

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ROBERT H. THOMAS, Jr. Conspicuous among the active business men of Mechanicsburg is Robert H. Thomas, Jr., of the well known Thomas Printing House. He is a son of Col. Robert H. and Annette (Kimmel) Thomas, and was born in Mechanicsburg Jan. 19, 1861. He is one of two srviving children, the other being Mrs. J. Irvin Steele, of Ashland, Pennsylvania.

Robert H. Thomas, Jr., was educated in the public schools of Mechanicsburg, and at the Cumberland Valley Institute. He has spent all his days in the place of his birth, and it may be said that his entire career, from early boyhood down to the present, has been a continuous period of business activity. Upon leaving the school room, in 1878, he entered the printing- office, and both by study and practice learned thoroughly the details of his father’s extensive business. With this knowledge and practical training he became business manager of the house, which exacting position he has successfully filled ever since. As his business has constantly brought him into contact with the aggressive minds that shape and direct matters in the various spheres of life, he is generally well informed, and is possessed of a progressive and enterprising spirit. He has traveled much, mingling freely with the people, is naturally quick to observe, ready and accurate in speech, and a good judge of human nature. He is a clear and forceful writer, a good conversationalist, and holds high rank among the journalists of the State. He is a Republican and takes an active interest in local and State politics.

Like his distinguished father, Mr. Thomas has long been prominent in Masonry, and has reached the thirty-second degree of the fraternity. He also belongs to the Knights of Pythias, the Patriotic Order Sons of America. (Lodge No. 164, of Mechanicsburg), and the American Mechanics. He is an enthusiastic fireman, and has been chief of the Mechanicsburg Fire Department. He is also identified with the Grange movement, and is treasurer of the Grangers’ Picnic Association, which holds annual exhibitions at Williams Grove, Cumberland county.

In January, 1891, Robert H. Thomas, Jr., married Miss Frances Coover, only daughter of Ira D. and Ellen (Downs) Coover. She was born in Upper Allen township, and on the paternal side is a descendant from one of the oldest and most respected families of that part of the county. Her mother was a member of an old and prominent family of the Eastern Shore, Maryland. She has two brothers, Alfred D. and David R., both of whom reside in Arizona. To Robert H. and Frances Coover Thomas have been born three children, Robert H. (3), Francis Edward and Mary Estelle, All of whom are living. Mr. and Mrs. Thomas are members of the Methodist Church.

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This family biography is one of numerous biographies included in the Biographical Annals of Cumberland County, Pennsylvania published in 1905 by The Genealogical Publishing Company. 

View additional Cumberland County, Pennsylvania family biographies here: Cumberland County, Pennsylvania Biographies

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