The United States government, on June 11, 1872, granted by letters a patent, No. 127,858, for an improvement in 'Sizing Paper, etc." to James M. Dorlan, which most valuable invention ha become of great benefit to the world. It consists of a new and useful ingredient (in compounds or compositions of other ingredients) called chloride of lime, bleaching-powder, or bleaching-salts, or its equivalent, to be made use of in any suitable quantities, as and for an improvement in creating or forming a poreless or water-proof gum size in paper stock and paper pulp for gum pulp-sizing paper of any or all kinds, but more particularly for gum-sizing paper stock and paper pulp for making pulp-sized hanging or house-wall and other wall papers of all qualities. Mr. Dorlan was born march 19, 1807, in this county, near Manor meeting-house. He early learned the paper-making trade, beginning in his fourteenth year, and during this time only attended school one month in a year. He served his apprenticeship with Davis & Cooper, and afterwards carried on the mill for Joseph M. Downing, now Guie's Mill.
About the year 1832 he purchased the paper-mill on the east branch of the Brandywine, four miles from Downingtown, and now known a Dorlan's Mills. When he bought it thiry-seven acres of land were attached, and to this he added nearly two hundred more. This mill, oiperated successfully by him for about fifty years, found a market for its paper in New York, Philadelphia, and Baltimore. During this time he never was engaged in litigation with his patrons. About fifteen hands were employed to run the mill, which is now operated by his son,Samuel B. He was married in 1828 to Elizabeth Dowlin, to whom were born eleven children; the following are living: Samuel B.,; Thomas; John D.; James; Esther Helena, married to Henry L. McConnell, of Philadelphia; and Mary Elizabeth, married to Dr. C. G. Traichler. Mr. Dorlan is of English descent, and was the son of Samuel and Mary (Scott) Dorlan. He started with no capital but his will and industry, and has been eminently successful in the race of life. He was elected justice of the peace, but owing to extensive business declined to serve.
In 1851 he was elected from Chester County a representative in the
Legislature, and served a full term. Is a member of the Presbyterian
Church, and is highly respected in the community. His invention and patent
to make paper impervious to water, to which he devoted much time and means,
has given him celebrity, and made his name widely known.