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Below is a family biography included in the book,  Portrait and biographical record of Lehigh, Northampton and Carbon counties, Pennsylvania published in 1894 by Chapman 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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HARRY A. R. DIETRICH, a leading young business man of South Bethlehem, is a heating and ventilating engineer, and is contractor for steam and hot-water heating, and has built up a large and successful trade. He was the first one to embark in this line of business in this place, and is still the principal one in this occupation. A self-made man, he has reason to be proud of his justly merited good fortune, for he has acquired his standing through his own worthy qualifications.

The birth of our subject occurred at Eden, Lancaster County, May 14, 1861, he being a son of Henry Dietrich. In a family of four children, Harry is the third in order of birth, and his boyhood was passed at Eden. He attended the district schools until sixteen years of age, when he learned the butcher’s business. In the spring of 1877 he removed to Fairville, Terry Hill Postoffice, Lancaster County, where he remained for a year, thence going to Reading, Pa. There he obtained employment in the tube works, and acquired a practical knowledge of the business, at which he worked more or less for two years at that point. His next place was with the Reading Scott Works, in the steam-forge department, where he was located for a year. In 1882 he became a resident of South Bethlehem, removing to this place with his parents. That summer he worked in the old rolling-mill, and later was with McKee & Milson for a year in their steam-boiler works. His next employment was with Baker, Smith & Co., of New York, obtaining contracts for steam heat. It was in 1885 that he started in business for himself, beginning at the bottom round of the ladder, and though necessarily it took some time to make headway, he has been successful in building up a good trade in this locality. In 1888 he located at his present place of business, comprising three floors, 25x50 feet, all of which space he occupies with his large stock. The boilers which he uses in his trade are the H. A. R. D., which he patented in 1893, making improved patents on them in 1894. They are constructed for his own use and sold to the trade in general, and in addition to this he has patented four other boilers, making his own designs. His place of business is on West Second Street and Penn Alley, and in the busy season from ten to fifteen men are employed.

Mr. Dietrich has fitted out many of the prominent public and private buildings in this community, among these the Moravian Theological Seminary for Young Men, the Lehigh Valley Company’s railroad offices, the Sun Hotel, the Lerch & Rice Company’s store, the Globe store, the Church of the Holy Infancy, and Bishop Thorp’s School. Many more might be mentioned, but these will serve to show that his work is endorsed by many of the leading men of the place. Mr. Dietrich is a member of the Master Steam and Hot-water Fitters’ Association of the United States, and takes an active part in the work of the organization.

May 14, 1894, Mr. Dietrich was married in Portland, this state, to Mrs. Priscilla (Webb) Davis, who was born in Wales. For nearly two terras our subject was a member of the School Board from the old First Ward, and later from the Second Ward, when he resigned. In politics he supports the Democratic party, in the success of which he is much interested.

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This family biography is one of the numerous biographies included in the book, Portrait and biographical record of Lehigh, Northampton and Carbon counties, Pennsylvania published in 1894 by Chapman Publishing Company. 

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

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