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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Pushing William Penn’s “Holy Experiment” to Its Limits: Ephrata Cloister

On the banks of the Cocalico Creek in northern Lancaster County a group of remarkable individuals established Ephrata, one of colonial Pennsylvania’s most unusual communities. A place of intense spirituality, unconventional way of life, literary and artistic brilliance, and medieval-style architecture, Ephrata was the center of a religious society whose principles gave William Penn’s...
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Currents

Grown and Sown For two centuries following the founding of Pennsylvania by William Penn in 1681, the lives of most Chester County citizens were tied to the land. “Grown in Chester County: The Story of Nineteenth Century Farming,” mounted by the Chester County Historical Society at its History Center in downtown West Chester, tells the story of early countians who accepted the...
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Harnessing the Power of the Wind: A Contemporary Use for a Historic Energy Source

Much like the oil farms of the last century were for drillers and riggers, Pennsylvania’s wind farms are proving grounds for engineers and technicians as they harness wind power. The long-standing use of wind power that for centuries propelled sailing vessels has been transformed throughout the world to produce electricity. Farmers used wind power in the late nineteenth and early twentieth...
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Stewards of the Land

Penn’s Woods possesses a rich agrarian heritage and its inhabitants have long borne an abiding stewardship for the land, a time-honored conviction that remains deeply embedded in the more than sixty-three thousand farming families that call Pennsylvania home. From the fertile landscape sprouts a $57 billion economic endeavor that supports one in seven jobs, making agriculture the...
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