From Memory to Memorial by J. William Thompson

From Memory to Memorial: Shanksville, America, and Flight 93 by J. William Thompson Penn State University Press, 200 pp., paper $19.95 The crash site and memorialization of Flight 93 near Shanksville, Somerset County, hasn’t received as much attention as the other sites touched by the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. This short, thoughtful and exceptionally well-written book brings...
read more

The Ship Hotel: Afloat with the Lincoln Highway’s Most Unusual Landmark

In 1931 the first and only baby was born at the Grand View Point Hotel, 18 miles west of Bedford, Bedford County. Little Clara was the pride of her grandfather Herbert J. Paulson (1874–1973), a Dutch immigrant who had built the hotel on the side of a mountain along the winding, two-lane Lincoln Highway. Clara grew up in the hotel, which “Captain” Paulson turned into the ship-shaped...
read more

Somerset County: Paths through the Roof Garden

Referring to the high elevation and the scenic quality of the region, Gov. Martin G. Brumbaugh called Somerset County “the Roof Garden of Pennsylvania” at an annual Farmers’ Day picnic in 1916. Since then. the description has become a familiar and respected title; the words “Roof Garden” have been in­corporated in the names of various businesses, and the complete...
read more

Fayette at the Crossroads

Fayette County has always been at the crossroads, both literally and figuratively, its destiny shaped by its location, the incredible riches of its natural resources and the vi­tality of a people descended from al­most every nation of Europe. It has a son of dual personality, geo­graphically divided between mountains and lowlands, historically divided into two almost equal eras of economic...
read more

Siegmund Lubin: The Forgotten Filmmaker

In Philipsburg, the summer of 1914 ended with a crash that could be heard for miles and seen around the world. On the slopes of Centre County’s Collision Field, a stadium formed by nature, five thousand festive, flag-waving spectators gathered to watch the wrecking of two great Pittsburgh & Susquehanna Railroad locomotives. Bands entertained the Labor Day celebrants with musical...
read more

Bookshelf

The Venango County Historical Society is republishing in its original size the 700-page History of Venango County. The book was originally published by Caldwell in 1879. If ordered prior to December 31 [1975], the price is $32.50. The after-publication price will be $37.50. Checks or money orders can be sent to Venango County Historical Society, Box 101, Franklin 16323.   The George Dallas...
read more

The Whiskey Boys Versus the Watermelon Army

When the issue of balancing the budget by raising taxes reared its ugly head recently, the nation once again saw the contro­versy and bitterness the sub­ject ignites. On Capitol Hill familiar questions were fiercely debated. Who should close the revenue gap, the wealthy or the working class? Should taxes be increased on ciga­rettes, gasoline, or liquor? Nearly two hundred years ago the Congress...
read more

That Magnificent Fight for Unionism: The Somerset County Strike of 1922

During 1920 and 1921, western Pennsylvania’s coal mine operators campaigned vigorously to slash wages of the miners they employed. Because demand for coal declined after World War One the operators were forced to reduce production, resulting in stack, or in some cases, the complete shutdown of operations. Many miners drifted to factory jobs in nearby cities, or simply clung to hope -and...
read more

Shorts

The distinctively decorated furniture of Soap Hollow in Somerset County (see “Makers’ Marks and a Master’s Touch” by Edna V. Brendlinger and Robert B. Myers in the winter 1986 edition) is on view at the Southern Alleghenies Mu­seum of Art, Loretto, from Saturday, March 27, through Monday, May 31, 1993. Soap Hollow furniture, made during the second half of the nine­teenth...
read more

Bookshelf

The Genius Belt: The Story of the Arts in Bucks County, Pennsylvania edited by George S. Bush James A. Michener Art Museum in association with The Pennsylvania State University Press, 1996 (174 pages, cloth, $40.00; paper, $29.95) Bucks County had known artists as neighbors for years, but in this handsome and richly illustrated book, novelist and native son James A. Michener writes that two...
read more