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THE COMMONWEALTH OF PENNSYLVANIA
THROUGH THE BUREAU OF PUBLICATIONS
The present issue of the Pennsylvania State Manual represents the transfer of the Smull's Legislative Hand Book from private to public direction. It has been deemed advisable to give a brief history of the varicus transitions which the manuals in use in this State have undergone. Through the courtesy of Mr. Herman P. Miller, former compiler, the following data is presented on this matter.
The members of the Legislature, previcus to the publication of Smull's Hand Book, were, at the beginning of each session, furnished by Resolution with a copy of Purdon's Digest, also with a copy of Ziegler's Legislative Manual, compiled by Jacob Ziegler, a former chief clerk of the House of Representatives.
Smull's Legislative Hand Book and Manual of the State of Pennsylvania, was first published in 1866, under the title, “Manual of Rules of the General Assembly of Pennsylvania and Legislative Directory together with the Constitutions of the United States and of Pennsylvania, compiled by John A. Smull, resident clerk of the Hcuse of Representatives”. It was a small book, four by six inches in size, and contained three hundred pages. Its contents, in addition to what the title recites, consisted of lists of state and county officers, post offices, election statistics, and other information which the manual annually thereafter contained.
Of this first edition, the House of Representatives, by Resolution, on February 13, 1867, ordered three thousand copies for the use of the members.
By Resolution of April 10, 1867, the clerk of the House was-authorized to have the Legislative Hand Book revised during the recess, and by Resolution of the same date, the clerk was directed to furnish one thousand copies of the revised Legislative Hand Book, for the use of the House at the commencement of the next session.
This is the birth of the book. It was annually compiled under the direction of John A. Smull, until his death. From 1881 to 1886, inclusive, it was compiled under the direction of William P. Smull, brother of the former compiler. From 1887 to 1908, it was compiled under the direction of Thomas B. Cochran, chief clerk of the Senate, who purchased the copyright from Mr. Smull. In 1909 the copyright was purchased by Herman P. Miller, librarian of the Senate, and was compiled under the direction of himself and W. Harry Baker, secretary of the Senate, from 1909 to 1922. The copyright was purchased by the
State under Act of Assembly in 1923. It has been the endeavor of the present compiler to give the essential features of the former volume with as great care as possible. The work, thus revised, is issued to the public, in the hope that it may continue to be useful to those who have found it available for their purpose in the past.
Some changes have taken place since the information was compiled, deaths have occurred, newspapers have been established or ceased to exist, and new officers have been appointed, but in the main the information presented is the best available and has been corrected as far as possible.
Acknowledgment is made of valuable assistance rendered by Messrs. James N. Moore, and John H. Fertig, of The Legislative Reference Bureau ; Mr. George D. Thorn, of the Bureau of Elections; the librarians of the Senate and House ; Deputy Attorney General Schnader and others who aided in the preparation of the volume. July 24, 1924.
R. E. W.