Letters to the Editor

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.

A Victory

After reading James E. Valle’s article, “The Battle of Lake Erie: A Victory for Commo­dore Perry,” I wished I could have witnessed the launching of the restored United States Brig Niagara in September. By the way, wasn’t Oliver Hazard Perry very young when he trounced the British?

J. Vincent Haar
Allentown, Pa.

Oliver Hazard Perry, born in South Kingston, Rhode Island, on August 23, 1785, was twenty­-eight years old when he took part in the Battle of Lake Erie on Sep­tember 10, 1813. He died of yellow fever on his thirty-second birthday in 1819 off the coast of Trinidad.


Botanical Legacy

As an avid (and amateur, may I add) gardener, I was bowled over by the absolutely beauti­ful article by Albert G. Mehring in the summer 1988 issue entitled “A Flowering for the Ages.” Although the out­standing illustrations drew me to this article, I found the text not only informational but enlightening. The cover illus­tration of the Franklinia alata­maha was breathtaking, and I was curious as to whether or not this is Pennsylvania’s offi­cial state flower.

Frances E. Stronheim
Westchester, N. Y.

The Franklinia alatamaha, discovered by Philadelphia father and son team of botanists, John and William Bartram, was named to honor John’s good friend, Ben­jamin Franklin. In 1933, the state legislature adopted the mountain laurel (Kalimiia latifolia) as the state flower. For more information on the Franklin flower, or the gardens kept by the Bartrams, write: John Bartram Association, Fifty-Fourth St. and Lindbergh Blvd., Philadelphia, PA 19143.


The bouquet of beautiful flowers presented in the sum­mer edition was truly magnifi­cent. Where were all those fabulous photographs found?

Jeanette B. Olsen
Philadelphia, Pa.

There are many individuals and institutions to thank for their generosity in lending illustrations especially for this article. The author and editor wish to ac­knowledge the contributions of Ann F. Rhoads of the Morris Arboretum; the Bowman’s Hill Wildflower Preserve, Brandywine Battlefield; Barbara E. Deibler, curator of the Commonwealth’s Rare Book Collection; the John Bartram Association; indepen­dence National Historical Park; and The State Museum of Pen­nsylvania. Picture credits may be found on the inside front cover of each edition.


Tranquility Regained

Your neighbors south of the Mason-Dixon Line certainly enjoyed the article on Adams County (see “Adams County: Tranquility Regained” by Rob­ert L. Bloom, fall 1988), which we visit quite often. We’ve toured the famous Gettysburg Battlefield, the home of Pres. and Mrs. Dwight D. Eisenho­wer and enjoyed more than our fair share of the county’s apples and peaches. Since most of our family still live in the “Deep South,” that is, Atlanta and Savannah, we make sure we give them the complete tour of Gettysburg­ – as well as our beautiful and historic Maryland. This issue of your magazine will take its place among my “tour and travel library” so that my guests can fully appreciate the story of Adams County. Thank you for the in-depth and “behind-the-scenes” history; it was terrific!

John V. Webster
Baltimore, Md.

I think your article on Adams County was well-written and nicely illustrated. As a Civil War buff, I enjoyed the addi­tional background on the county, particularly its local political scene.

Harry Bowers
Nanticoke, Pa.


Boathouse Row

It’s about time people from outside Philadelphia take a look at Boathouse Row (see “Crews, Clubs and Club­houses” by Sara Freligh, fall 1988)! Too many visitors think only of Independence Hall, the Liberty Bell, Christ Church and dozens, perhaps hun­dreds, of our historic buildings and sites. I am delighted that this Philadelphia institution has warranted the attention of a state magazine. Bravo! And thanks!

Betsy Ann Winton
Philadelphia, Pa.