Take Cover! Pennsylvania’s Civil-Defense Program

After World War II, US-Soviet relations broke down swiftly as both forces raced to develop powerful nuclear weapons. Civil-defense officials feared that the concentration of resources, vital industry, and transportation systems would make the commonwealth a likely target for Soviet bombers if the two powers ever went to war. “By every possible criterion, Pennsylvania will be a No. 1 target so...
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Tough and Determined: Pioneering Newspaper Editor Rebecca F. Gross

On a night in the winter of 1947-48, Rebecca F. Gross, 42 years old and the editor of a 10,000-circulation daily newspaper in the small town of Lock Haven, Clinton County, was scheduled to have dinner with two luminaries of the time: Robert Capa, the internationally famous war photographer, and John Steinbeck, the novelist and future Nobel laureate. The dinner was an event set up for members of...
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Born a Leader for Pennsylvania

The essence of life is unconditional, non-judgmental love,” explains George Michael Leader when asked to sum-up his philosophy. He writes poetry, models and advocates wellness, leads community humanitarian projects, reads extensively, and oversees a family corpora­tion he founded that includes nursing facili­ties and retirement communities. In his ninth decade he is, as he has always been,...
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All Creatures Great and Small: The Western Pennsylvania Humane Society’s Revolution of Kindness Reformed Society and Improved Lives

On a cold February morning in 1965, Donora Mayor Albert P. Delsandro took his daily stroll in the Washington County community’s Palmer Park and made a shocking discovery. Thirteen dead dogs, each with amputated ears, lay in the tall, yellowed grass. A little-known Pennsylvania stray dog law authorized a $2 bounty for every pair of grisly trophies sent to Harrisburg. Countless citizens expressed...
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