Currents

The Gift A spectacular collection of nearly three hundred and fifty colorful feathered objects is featured in an unusual exhibi­tion at The University Museum of Archaeology and Anthropol­ogy, Philadelphia. Designed to invite the museum visitor “to be an anthropologist” and explore culture as it is experi­enced by diverse South American natives, “The Gift of Birds: Featherwork...
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Heritage Highlights

Daniel Boone Homestead, Birdsboro First Pennsylvania Regiment Flintlock Shoot, September 11-12, 1993 Architectural Heritage Day, October 17, 1993 Brandywine Battlefield Park, Chadds Ford Annual Battle of Brandywine Reenactment, September 19, 1993 Bushy Run Battlefield, Jeanette Fall Nature Walk and Tour, October 16, 1993 Drake Well Museum, Titusville Fall Gas- up Engine Exhibit and...
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Currents

Chester County Centennial The Chester County Historical Society, West Chester, has marked its one hundredth anniversary by mounting an exhibition entitled “Presenting Your Past: A Centennial Celebration.” The exhibit highlights the extraordinary collections acquired by the historical society during its first century. Objects on view include significant pieces selected from the...
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Commemorating a Centennial by Revising a Vision

The American museum was and is an idea. The European museum was a fact. Almost without exception the European museum was first a collection. With few exceptions most American museums were first an ideal,” Philadelphian Nathaniel Burt wrote in his 1977 history of the American museum, Palaces for People. Unlike their European counterparts, which were usually created to house the great...
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Remember the Ladies: Women and the American Revolution

Today, American women are barred by law from most combat roles, but they have played a part in battle since the American Revolu­tion, a tradition that continued through the Civil War, the World Wars, the Korean War, the Vietnam Conflict, the invasion of Panama in 1989 and, most recently, the Persian Gulf War. During the Civil War, at least four hundred women – those actually caught and...
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Celebrating Fifty Years of State Historical Markers

On a September day in 1946, three men stood alongside U.S. Route 22, fourteen miles east of Harrisburg, inspecting a distinctive blue and gold sign that had just been erected. They were James H. Duff, chairman of the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission (who in four months would be inaugurated the Commonwealth’s thirty­-fourth governor), and Commission members Charles G. Webb and...
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A Commonwealth Treasure: Brandywine Battlefield Park

Brandywine Battlefield now lies quiet and peaceful, offering no grim hint of the heartbreak it once witnessed and bloodshed that stained its tall meadow grasses. Two hundred and twenty years ago this autumn its tranquility was shattered by the cacophony of cannon and its fields trampled by soldiers – twenty-six thousand of them – determined to do battle. Today, this scenic region of...
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Executive Director’s Message

Travel Diary – Autumn 1997 A busy week of commem­orative events in September calls attention to important themes in our history. I cannot help but notice the growing number of historical figures – known to many as living historians, reenactors, first-person interpreters, impersonators, or character actors – participating in these occasions. Apparently an appropriately costumed...
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Executive Director’s Message

“George Washing­ton slept here.” No other state – besides Virginia, of course – claims a closer connection to the life and times of George Washington than Pennsylvania. Travels during his extraordinary military and political careers took him to dozens of settlements and sites across the Commonwealth. Many of these places survive and offer vivid reminders of the presence...
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Executive Director’s Message

September 11, 1777. On this date, two hundred and twenty­-five years ago, George Washington and his army suffered a devastating defeat at the Battle of Brandywine. A flanking action ordered by Sir William Howe, commander of British forces, nearly led to a complete rout. Surprised and mis­informed about his opponent’s plans, Washington man­aged an orderly but embarrassing retreat. The...
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