Trolley Freight Motor Number 07

In an unusual swap, the Pennsylvania Trolley Museum in Washington, south of Pittsburgh, recently added a rare piece of rolling stock to its extensive holdings. The museum acquired Trolley Freight Motor Number 07 from the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA), Philadelphia, in exchange for a snow sweeper originally used by the Philadelphia Rapid Transit Company (and last...
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Birthday Bank

When Louis Wolf, president of the Federation of Jewish Charities of Philadelphia, composed his annual message for 1915, he could be gratified that his agency had raised more than $210,000 to help the Jewish community. Of that total, thirty-five dollars had come from pennies saved by Jewish school children. This speck on the balance sheet, however, pleased Wolf more than the many larger...
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Pewter Communion Service

When the Heritage Center of Lancaster County , was established in 1974, a “wish list” of objects and artifacts for its permanent collection was devel­oped. The first item on this list was a communion service containing signifi­cant wares by noted Lancaster County pewterer Johann Christoph Heyne (1715-1781). In February 1997, the Heritage Center’s dream came true when it...
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Carved Duck Decoy by Frank Buchner

In the opening paragraph of an article entitled “Duck-Shooting on Lake Erie,” a writer for the Illustrated London News of January 5, 1889, observed, “In no part of the world is there better duck-shooting than on Lake Erie.” Duck hunters familiar with northwestern Pennsylvania had known that for some time. Migratory waterfowl have traditionally followed seasonal flight...
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Lead Glass Tumblers by Stourbridge Flint Glass Works (1835)

Research for a landmark exhibit re­cently opened at the John Heinz Pittsburgh Regional History Center, “Glass: Shattering Notions,” has uncov­ered new information about an early nineteenth-century pair of colorless lead glass tumblers. In the collections of the Historical Society of Western Pennsylvania (which administers the center) since the 1970s, the tumblers, with finely cut and...
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Portrait of the Hutchinson Family (1806)

During the first decade of the nineteenth century, young women of affluent Philadelphia families enrolled in the school of Samuel and Ann Elizabeth Gebler Folwell to learn drawing and painting from Samuel, and advanced embroidery from his wife Ann. The Folwells encouraged talented pupils to undertake a silk needlework picture with intricate French knots and satin stitches as a final project....
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The Saturday Evening Post

Few twentieth-century illustrators have garnered the fame – or adulation – ­that artist Norman Rockwell (1894-1978), who endeared himself to an international audience with his nostalgic glimpses of American life, enjoyed. Many may think of Rockwell as the quintessential New Englander, but his association with Pennsylvania runs deep. He created hundreds of cover illustra­tions for The...
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Slatington Hose Company Leather Firefighter’s Helmet (c.1890)

Realizing their borough lacked a system for fighting fires, the residents of Slatington, located in northern Lehigh County, organized the Slatington Hose Company, Number 1, in 1885. Much like most firefighting units of the day, the Slatington Hose Company, Number 1, quickly became an important – and integral – part of the community. A significant piece of local firefighting...
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P-V Engineering Forum Helicopter

Few may realize it, but fifty years ago eastern Pennsylvania’s Delaware Valley played host to the development of rotor winged aircraft – known to most as the helicopter. The area’s technological base and talent were incomparable, and world-famous aviation pioneer Igor I. Siko­rsky (1889-1972), whose model VS-300 was the western hemisphere’s first practical helicopter,...
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Calligraphy Version of Washington Irving’s Poem “The Wife”

Amy Matilda Cassey, the wife of affluent African American abolitionist, businessman, and community leader Joseph Cassey, was active in the Philadelphia Female Antislavery Society, local black literary and debating societies, and reform movements of the day. Her greatest contribution, however, may be an album she compiled that spans nearly a quarter-century. From 1833 to 1856, Cassey filled her...
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