Old Economy Village: The Centennial of the First Site on the Pennsylvania Trails of History

One hundred years ago, on February 3, 1916, the Beaver County Court of Common Pleas, in an escheat case, awarded the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania 6 acres of land that had been part of the town of Economy. World War I was raging in Europe, and with the United States’ entrance in the war the following year, the state had little time or money to deal with a newly acquired historic site. In 1919 the...
read more

If Looms Could Speak: The Story of Pennsylvania’s Silk Industry

On Friday March 3, 1989, the Catoir Silk Company Inc. in the Lehigh County seat of Allentown, ceased operation for the final time. The silence of the looms signaled the end of an industry the once dominated eastern Pennsylvania’s industrial landscape and economy. The closing captured a front-page story in Allentown’s daily newspaper, The Morning Call, which duly recorded the demise...
read more

Can It Already Be Fall?

New Exhibits An exciting new long-term exhibit recently opened at Drake Well Museum and Park at Titusville, Venango County. In the Summer 2011 issue of Pennsylvania Heritage, I profiled the building renovation project at Drake Well, including plans for a geothermal climate control system and a new comprehensive exhibit. There’s a Drop of Oil and Gas in Your Life Every Day, which made its...
read more

Executive Director’s Letter

I want to take this opportunity to thank the hundreds of people who took time to write letters of support for the programs at PHMC’s historic sites and museums throughout the Commonwealth that have been affected by budget cuts. It was especially heartening to see the hundreds more who attended community meetings to discuss the future of destinations along the Pennsylvania Trails of HistoryTM...
read more

PHMC Highlights

Washington Crossing Historic Park has an unusual and highly entertaining way of casting the individual to portray General George Washington at the Bucks County historic site. In September, contestants competed in the 2009 George Washington contest during auditions in which they answered questions about the American Revolutionary War. The winner earned the privilege of playing Washington at the...
read more

Discovering Religious Diversity Along the Pennsylvania Trails of History

William Penn (1644-1718) knew well the sting of discrimination and the misery of persecution for his religious beliefs. He suffered the consequences of breaking with the Church of England, leading to estrangement from his father, Admiral Sir William Penn (1621-1670). When imprisoned for attending meetings of the Society of Friends – commonly called Quakers and Friends – the younger...
read more