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.

Live from KDKA

Please check the spelling of Dr. Frank Courad in “Live from Pittsburgh…” by Linda Kowall which appeared in the spring 1990 edition. As a native of Wilkinsburg and retiree of Westinghouse, I’ve seen and heard that name many times and it was always Conrad, not Courad. We found the Grif Teller article (see “Grif Teller Paints the Pennsy” by Dan Cupper, winter 1990) espe­cially interesting as I have a copy of the 1934 picture of the Horseshoe Curve which dad brought home to hang in the attic bedroom I shared with my brother. The picture is in excellent condition as it was evidently professionally framed under glass and has remained so ever since. Our father worked in the Pennsyl­vania Railroad station in Pitts­burgh, specifically in the Bell Telephone automatic office providing telephone service to the railroad, and I guess that’s how he obtained the picture which I have always treasured.

A. C. Bires, Jr.
Beaver, Pa.

The spelling of the name of the Westinghouse chief engineer, whose experimental work led to the creation of Pittsburgh radio station KDKA, is Conrad. He first became interested in radio in 1912 when he built a small re­ceiver to hear the time signals from the National Observatory in Arlington, Virginia, and settle a five dollar bet on the accuracy of his watch. Conrad’s experiments have become landmarks in Ameri­ca’s broadcasting history.


Play Ball!

I submit in regard to William C. Kashatus III’s splendid article, “Philadelphia’s Mr. Baseball and His Amazing Athletics” in the summer 1990 edition, that Connie Mack in his fifty years, 1901-1950, con­centrated more on outwinning the Phillies than he ever did on beating the Yankees, Red Sox, Indians, Tigers, White Sox, Senators and Browns. The Grand Old Man of Baseball had the soul of a bookkeeper. I am sure attendance records would match won-lost per­centages. In those fifty years, Mack’s Athletics played .482 baseball, while the Phillies played .438. The Fighting Phillies were awful. They were in the second division thirty­-three of the fifty years and won pennants only in 1915 and 1950. They went through twenty-one managers and from 1918 to 1949 were in pen­nant contention past July 4 only twice. Dreadful as the Athletics could be, they were in second division twenty­-seven times. As Mack could sell off fine ballplayers, so could the Phillies: Grover Cleveland Alexander, Bill Kille­fer, Chuck Klein, Lefty O’Doul, Dick Bartell, Dolph Camilli and hometown pitcher Bucky Walters.

Paul B. Beers
Harrisburg, Pa.

I certainly appreciate having the article, “Philadelphia’s Mr. Baseball and His Amazing Athletics,” to add to my collec­tion of memorabilia. Thank you for making it possible for me to have a copy of the sum­mer 1990 issue of Pennsylvania Heritage.

Connie Mack
Washington, D. C.

A grandson of the legendary baseball manager, Connie Mack is a United States Sena­tor representing Florida.


A Closer Look

That was a fine article on But­ler County in the summer 1990 issue (see “Butler County: A Story in Diversity” by Michael J. O’Malley III), but you did not look closely enough at W. Weingartner’s map of the Har­mony Society. Although drawn in 1833, it depicted Harmony in 1805; the Harmo­nists were already at their third home in Beaver County by 1833. This map is illustrated in German script, and The Western Pennsylvania Genealogi­cal Society Quarterly, which I edit, published it with the names translated by the Rev. Paul Miller Ruff, a German specialist, in our spring 1987 edition. The German notation in the upper right hand corner reads Harmony Cemetery 1805-1815 and, beneath that, So lay the town Harmonie in Butler County in the year 1805. In June 1814 the first transport left to the Wabash. W. Weingartner Febr. 22, 1833.

Jean S. Morris
Pittsburgh, Pa.

In addition to serving as edi­tor of The Western Pennsylvania Genealogical Society Quarterly, Jean Sansenbaugher Morris is a professional genealogist who concentrates on research in the Commonwealth’s western counties.


Pitcher Perfect

In “Letters to the Editor” in the summer 1990 issue, the re­sponse to the letter from Con­stance Shiller of Newport, Rhode Island (see “Pitcher This”), contained an error in geography. Phoenixville is not located in Montgomery County, but in Chester County.

Lois K. Donovan
Phoenixville, Pa.