My Memories of Harrisburg and the Flood of ’36

In 1923, I was four years old when my family moved from Philadelphia to Harrisburg. My father, Einar Barfod, had been appointed chief investigator in the securities department of Pennsylvania’s ban.king department by Governor Gifford Pinchot. My earliest memory of Harrisburg was a summer when my mother hired a farmer to plow the field next to our house, then having all the neighborhood...
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Bookshelf

Connie Mack’s ’29 Triumph: The Rise and Fall of the Philadelphia Athletics Dynasty by William C. Kashatus McFarland & Company, Inc., 1999 (216 pages, cloth, $28.50) To baseball historians, Connie Mack (1862-1956) is a star among managers. His professionalism, penetrating knowledge of the game, and ability to handle his players helped him claim nine pennants, win five World...
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Currents

Both Sides Now A decade in the making, Harrisburg’s newly opened National Civil War Museum boasts nearly thirty thousand square feet of exhibition space. Situated high atop a knoll in a city park, with a commanding view of the capital city below, the museum – described by the re­gion’s press as “a world-class museum for a world-class collection” – is the first...
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Eddie Plank

Gettysburg conjures up images of the greatest battle of the American Civil War. Shortly after guns were silenced, the same rural community played an important role in producing one of baseball’s greatest pitchers. Edward Stewart “Eddie ” Plank, born August 31, 1875, played baseball for Gettysburg College, while attending Gettysburg Academy from 1900 to 1901. He went directly...
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David McNeely Stauffer’s Little Known Legacy to Lancaster

“Nothing con­tributes so much to tranquilize the mind as a steady purpose – a point on which the soul may fix its intellectual eye.” A passage from Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley’s 1818 clas­sic Frankenstein may be a most unlikely source, but these words characterize the equally unlikely life of Lancaster County native David McNeely Stauffer (1845-1913). Born in Richland...
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Documenting Everyday Life in Pennsylvania During the Great Depression and World War II

The documentary photography project initiated by the Farm Security Administration (FSA) in 1935 was an unprecedented experiment in the history of photography, and it remains a monument to a collective effort that will never be equaled-the recording of an entire nation, from the city and town to the farm, from the home to the factory, from work to leisure, from school to church, from the baseball...
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Out and About

American Etchers Abroad Beginning in the early 1880s, a large number of American artists set out for foreign lands. Europe offered travel abroad, opportunity to study great works of art, and instruction from master artists. Many were drawn to the graphic art of etching. With etching tools in hand, they explored Europe, Asia, and North Africa, and recorded their impressions of sites and people....
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A Flag Bears Witness – Don’t Give Up The Ship

A mere five words stitched on a flag in 1813 in a tiny frontier village produced one of the most enduring symbols in United States history. Two hundred years later those few words – Don’t Give Up The Ship – have become a stirring, unofficial motto of the U.S. Navy; a rallying cry; and a flag flown from masts of sailboats, yachts, tall ships, and more. The details of the War of...
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Laughing with Philadelphia Stooge Larry Fine

During the 1938 Independence Day weekend, hundreds of Philadelphians flocked to Atlantic City, lured by the sparkling beach and the frenetic boardwalk with its extravaganza of amusement rides, theaters, arcades, and Steel Pier, the showplace of the New Jersey shore. Many stood in line at Steel Pier waiting to see three men who had captured their hearts and imaginations — The Three Stooges. The...
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Peter F. Rothermel

Best known — in Pennsylvania at least — as the artist of the colossal painting depicting Pickett’s Charge on July 3, 1863, the third and final day of the Battle of Gettysburg, Peter Frederick Rothermel (1817–1895) was born and raised in Nescopeck, Luzerne County. Following a public school education he moved to Philadelphia where he worked as a sign painter. He briefly studied drawing before...
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