Letters presents readers' comments and reactions to specific articles in Pennsylvania Heritage, the initiatives of PHMC, and other developments in the historical, cultural and museum communities of Pennsylvania.

Sheer Eloquence

I enjoyed reading David McCullough’s first-person account of how he tackles research and writing (see “Homeward Bound: An Interview with David McCullough” by Brent D. Glass in the summer 1994 edition). He is articulate and perceptive. His words are nothing short of sheer eloquence. Aren’t we fortunate to be able to claim him as a native Pennsylvanian?

Michael L. O’Brien
Pittsburgh, Pa.

David McCullough, author of The Johnstown Flood, The Great Bridge, The Path Between the Seas, Truman, Mornings on Horseback, and Brave Companions, was born and raised in Pittsburgh. McCullough, accompanied by his wife Rosalee, traveled to Pine Grove, Schuylkill County, on Thursday, December 8, 1994, to participate in the unveiling and dedication of a state historical marker honoring friend and fellow Pulitzer Prize-winning writer Conrad Richter (1890-1968). The following Saturday David McCullough was presented The Pennsylvania Society’s prestigious Gold Medal for Distinguished Achievement during the organization’s annual dinner in New York (see “Ninety-Five Years of The Pennsylvania Society: A ‘Who’s Who’ of Business and Politics” by Dan Cupper in the fall 1993 issue). The McCulloughs currently reside in Massachusetts.


Drive-In, Drive-By

With all the newspaper and television coverage of violence, especially the latest act of senselessness, the drive-by shooting, it was comforting to read about that wonderful institution of my youth, the drive-in (see “Moonbeams and B­-Movies: The Rise and Fall of the Drive-In Theater” by Brian Butko and Rebecca Shiffer in the summer 1994 issue). How many pleasant summer evenings I spent with friends at our local drive-in movie theater! Unfortunately, that theater has been tom down and an unattractive strip mall (which is nearly empty) has replaced it. Pennsylvania Heritage helps me keep my memories sharp, and helps me forget, at least for a little while, the ugliness that surrounds us.

Mitchell V. Smith
Philadelphia, Pa.


Again and Again

I do not know how your staff does it, but again and again you’re keeping on top of the times! Your interview with David McCullough coincided with his fight to keep the Disney Company from desecrating some of the most beautiful and historic countryside in Virginia. Your latest coup was publishing John B. Holway’s “Josh Gibson, The Heartbreak Kid,” in the fall 1994 issue, which arrived just in time for the Ken Burns documentary, “Baseball,” aired by PBS. I don’t know how you do it, but don’t stop. I’m hooked on Pennsylvania Heritage.

Jim Blake
Philadelphia, Pa.


By Sheer Accident

It was by sheer accident while researching at the Historical Society of Schuylkill County in Pottsville that a fellow researcher made me aware of the article about women in baseball by Barbara Gregorich, “Blues, Bloomers, and Bobbies,” that appeared in the summer 1993 edition. The article featured my great-aunt, Lizzie Stride, of Mahanoy City, Schuylkill County. I am grateful to the author for writing about Lizzie and giving her the credit she deserves. Thanks for publishing this great article – too bad Ken Burns didn’t use it in his television show “Baseball.”

Margaret F. Downing
Springfield, Va.