Crews, Clubs and Clubhouses

Long before the light of the rising sun touches the tops of the tall silver buildings of center-city Philadelphia, turn­ing the sky to the color of gunmetal, morning has dawned on Boathouse Row. Morning comes early to that small swatch of the Schuylkill River, and to the ten old Victorian era structures renowned throughout the world as a center for rowing – and recognized by...
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Crawford County: Welcoming the 21st Century

We passed over some good land since we eft Venango, and through several extensive and very rich meadows, one of which, I believe, was nearly four miles in length, and consid­erably wide in some places. Twenty-one year old George Washington, who would in time become a major landholder and land specula­tor, described Crawford County in 1753 as he carried a dispatch demanding the com­mander of the...
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A One Night Stand to Remember – Or to Forget

Laurette Taylor, an actress who knew well of what she spoke, wrote, “There is no existence so devoid of meaning as ‘the one night stands,’ none so fatal to progress as any kind of forced and hurried travel­ing.” Yet of just such ingredi­ents was the theatrical experience compounded dur­ing the last quarter of the nine­teenth century. For these were the years of “the...
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“A New County to Be Called Snyder”

Snyder is a small rural county covering 327 square miles with a population exceeding thirty thou­sand. Situated near the center of the Commonwealth, it is bounded on the northwest by Jack’s Mountain, on the southeast by the Mahantango Creek and on the en­tire eastern end by the beautiful Susquehanna River. Most of the remaining boundaries are unrelated to natural features. Geologically,...
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Lawrence County

Bart Richards, the unofficial historian of Lawrence County, indicates that little of historical significance has occurred in the county. He points out that it has had no wars, Indian uprisings, or great discoveries to its credit. Very few of its citizens have qualified for the pages of Who’s Who. Therefore, this history is the story of average, ordinary people striving to make a better...
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His Eye Was On the Positive

Ask a well-informed Philadelphian who it is that photo­graphs local society, and the answer will probably be a resounding “Fabian Bach­rach.” Few people know that for more than thirty years – from 1936 to 1967 – a Black photographer, John W. Mosley, was the photographer for mid­dle and professional class Black Philadelphians, and that virtually every significant social...
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Philadelphia’s Mr. Baseball and His Amazing Athletics

Connie Mack always seemed to be dressed in black. His three­-piece business suit, complete with necktie, detach­able collar and derby, gave him the appearance of a Philadel­phia funeral director rather than baseball manager. But for the ten years he had guided the hometown Athletics, Mack took his job very seriously. To be sure, on this sunny Sep­tember morning in 1911, the game of baseball had...
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Fishing around Philadelphia

Sport fishing, one of mankind’s favorite recreational activities, has been practiced by young and old, rich and poor, male and female, for centuries. Today’s fisherman may be standing elbow-to-elbow with his peers on the opening day of trout season, racing his four wheel drive vehicle along the beach to be the first at his favorite surf-casting spot, or bobbing up and down in a...
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Pennsylvania Gridiron: Washington and Jefferson College’s First Century of Football

Gentlemen, you are now going to play football against Harvard. Never again in your whole life will you do anything so important. Yale’s noted football coach T.A.D. Jones delivered his message just as his team was going out to defend Yale Bowl against its ancient rival. But it’s not only coaches whose pas­sion for football is ardent­ – millions play the game on high school,...
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Lycoming County: Many Call It Romantic

Its heritage is so rich that it’s hard to adequately­ – and accurately – portray the roles Lycoming County has played in the Commonwealth’s history. Since its settlement in the mid­-eighteenth century, it has had, according to Sylvester K. Stevens, author of the 1946 guide to the Keystone State’s sixty-seven counties, My Penn­sylvania, “one of the most...
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