Glatfelter
Glatfelter

Sitting in her father's office, Chris Glatfelter saw evidence of his passion for history.

Charles Glatfelter had books, index cards, files and article clippings on Gettysburg College, the Adams County Historical Society, U.S. presidents and local family backgrounds, she said.

"I don't see a computer," said Chris Glatfelter, 61, of Tyrone Adams County. "He didn't use one. I see file after file of information, boxes of records. He was like a bloodhound, hot on the trail of that one missing fact that would make the story complete."

Charles Glatfelter, a well-known local historian, died Wednesday, Feb. 6, at his Gettysburg home after a brief illness. He was 88.

He also leaves, a son, Philip Glatfelter, 55, of Hellam Township; and a half brother, Roger Krout of Boynton Beach, Fla.

His wife, Miriam Glatfelter, died in 2009.

A 1946 graduate of Gettysburg College, Glatfelter was a history professor there from 1949 to 1989. He served as college dean in the 1960s, Chris Glatfelter said.

Charles Glatfelter, a Glen Rock native, was executive director of the Adams County Historical Society from 1959 to 2001. A life member of the Pennsylvania Historical Association, he was its past president, vice president, recording secretary and treasurer.

He served as member of the Gettysburg Bicentennial Committee and chairman of the Adams County Bicentennial Committee. He documented history for Adams and York counties.

He also was a member of his family's Casper Glattfelder[eya: cq: ] Association of America, where he served in every office from president to treasurer between 1961 and 2005, his daughter said.

He helped organize the association's annual family reunion, now in its 108th year. The reunions are attended by close to 200 people at Heimwald Park near Seven Valleys.

Charles Glatfelter wrote several publications, including the two-volume "Pastors and People: German Lutheran and Reformed Churches in the Pennsylvania Field." He also wrote "A Brief History of Glen Rock."

Chris Glatfelter said her father was kind and compassionate and showed his children how to work hard and succeed.

"He showed us what a good life looked like," she said. "I learned if you're going to do something you better do it right, better get your facts straight. I learned from him how to be diplomatic, how to be in a civil conversation with someone that you fiercely disagreed with, show respect for opinions."

To Lila Fourhman-Shaull, Charles Glatfelter was a "walking encyclopedia," who knew a seemingly endless amount of York County history.

He was a long-standing York County Heritage Trust member, who regularly did research at or shared information with the library, said Fourhman-Shaull, director of the trust's library and archives department.

"He was excitable about history, always made it interesting and had a unique sense of humor," Fourhman-Shaull said. "I learned from him the importance of detail, accuracy and making sure your sources were correct. He (showed) me good examples of what to do."

The funeral for Charles H. Glatfelter is at 11 a.m. Tuesday, Feb. 12, at Christ Evangelical Lutheran Church, 30 Chambersburg St. in Gettysburg.

Viewings are 2 to 4 p.m. Sunday at Geiple Funeral Home Inc., 53 Main St. in Glen Rock, and 9:15 to 10:45 p.m. Tuesday at the church.

A graveside service will be held at 2:30 p.m. Tuesday at Zion Lutheran Church Cemetery on Hanover Street in Glen Rock.

-Reach Eyana Adah McMillan at emcmillan@yorkdispatch.com.