Solomon Dorney

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Solomon Dorney

Postby bunky1963 » Fri May 01, 2009 8:09 pm

To celebrate the 125th anniversary of Dorney Park, you might like to visit the grave of Solomon Dorney, the founder of Dorney Park! His grave is at Cedar Church Cemetery, at 3419 Broadway, nearby in Cetronia, just a short distance from Dorney Park.

You can see his grave & tombstone here at the Find A Grave web site: ... id=8000363

His grave is easy to find near the World War I monument and flagpole, not too far from the roadway. A parking lot is located nearby.

After I visited the grave, I went to the Allentown Public Library where I looked up his obituary in the microfilm files of the Morning Call newspaper. Here is his obituary as printed in the Morning Call on June 12, 1901.

Solomon Dorney, one of the best known residents of South Whitehall, the founder of what is now that popular resort known as Dorney's Park, died Monday night in the seventieth year of his age. His illness dates from last Friday night, when he had an acute attack of gastritis, which superinduced heart trouble. Owing to the heart affection he could not lie in bed, so he sat in a reclining chair and died in it. He was descended from one of the oldest families of the Cedar Creek Valley. His father was Adam Dorney. The subject of this sketch learned the carriage making trade in his youth and for a period of twenty years conducted the carriage manufacturing business and a general store at Cedarville. After he sold out his business at Cedarville thirty years ago he established Dorney's Park. It was for many years known as the Fish Weir, and soon was popular as a place for Sunday school picnics and social gatherings. He propagated and sold trout there and did much to restock the streams on this and adjoining counties with trout. A few years ago he sold the park to the Allentown and Kutztown Traction Company and since then Mr. Dorney led a retired life. His wife died three years ago. Within a year and two months two of his sisters died - Mrs. Dr. Charles H. Apple, of Zionsville, and Mrs. Tilghman Dorney, of Allentown. The surviving children are Mrs. Ellen R. Weaver, of Cedarville (Cetronia); Frank T. Dorney, baker at Dorney's Park and manager of the hotel and restaurant there; Prof. O. C. Dorney and Dr. A. H. Dorney, of Allentown, and E. J. Dorney of Dorney's Park. His only surviving brothers are Charles A. Dorney, of Allentown, and W. T. Dorney, of Hickory Run. The deceased was a Republican in politics and for twenty years was postmaster at Cedarville, a position now filled by his daughter, Mrs. Weaver. The funeral will take place on Friday morning. Mr. Dorney was for many years a well-known figure at the Allentown Fair, where he had novel forms of popular amusements."

Right next to the obituary I found this advertisement for Dorney's Park:

"Dancing at Dorney's Park.
Dances will be given every Tuesday and Thursday evenings at Dorney's Park during the season. Klingler's Orchestra will furnish the music."

Thanks to Solomon Dorney, we all have experienced many years of fun and enjoyment at Dorney Park! Thank you, Mr. Solomon Dorney! Happy 125th Anniversary, Dorney Park!
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