Part of the PAGenWeb

According to the book,
History of Perry County, Pennsylvania; H. Hain; 1922


What more appropriate place could have been chosen for a Soldiers' Orphan School than the Tressler Orphans' Home at Loysville, and where there have been found a man more entitled to be its first principal than Capt. D. L. Tressler, the young principal of the institution (which had previously been an academy) who, when the safety of the Union was imperiled, dropped his educational work, and organized a company composed mostly of his own students, and left for the front?  While Perry County has sent forth to larger fields many men of note, of heroic mould, and of noble character, it can scarcely be doubted that D. L. Tressler, soldier, officer, teacher, attorney, theologian, and college president, stands in the very front rank.  Just as he reached the top in the field of his choice, would he have reached it should he have chosen the law.  During the first eighteen months of the existence of this school W. H. Minich was its superintendent, G. V. Tressler succeeding him.  It was established in 1865.  

In 1867 the General Synod of the Lutheran Church, through Rev. Philip Willard purchased the building and five acres of land, and it became the home of both church and soldiers' orphans.  During the first two years of the church ownership it was leased to Philip Bosserman, with Rev. John Kistler as superintendent.  An additional plot of twenty-seven and one-half acres was then purchased by the trustees, who had been named by the Church.  On June 1, 1869, it was placed under the charge of Rev. Willard as superintendent.  When he took charge the institution had eighty soldier orphans and eighteen wards of the Church.  By 1876 the proportion was sixty-two soldiers' orphans and forty-six Church wards.  The original brick building was 40x60, three stories high.  Upon taking charge for the Church, Rev. Willard erected a frame building, 20x48, the first floor being a dining room and the second a dormitory.  In 1875 the old cooking house was torn away and a new brick one, 30x50, two stories high, replaced it.  It had separate departments for cooking, for baking, for washing, and for shower baths.

This school under the long control of Father Willard, as Rev. Willard came to be known, had a fine reputation with the state authorities, as their many reports testify.  Among the early teachers were:  George Sanderson, George W. Weaver, Ira Wentzel, Herman F. Willard, S. S. Willard, L. A. Haffley, G. M. Willard, A. M. Paff, and Misses Nettie Willard, Elsie Berg, Hattie Anstadt, and M. L. Willard.  Its further history follows:  

(The above information was extracted from the book, History of Perry County Pennsylvania; H. H. Hain; Hain-Moore Co.; Harrisburg, Pa.; 1922.  Chapter XVIII.)


This site is maintained  by Cathy Wentz-Eisenstadt
Copyright 2003-2010.  All Rights Reserved.

This page was last updated on:   03/14/2009

People for better PA Historical Records Access (PaHR-Access)
Learn about the grassroots effort to make older PA state death certificates available on-line!!  Please consider helping.