Daisy E. Lampkin: Activist for Racial and Gender Equality

Daisy E. Lampkin (1883–1965) dedicated her life to advancing the rights of  women and African Americans in the United States during the first half of the 20th century. Born Daisy Elizabeth Adams in Washington, D.C., she spent her childhood in Reading, Berks County, before moving to Pittsburgh in 1909 and marrying restauranteur William Lampkin in 1912. She began her public career at the height of...
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World War II Trails

For the past few years we have been commemorating anniversaries of two major geopolitical and military conflicts, World War I and World War II. The Pennsylvania Trails of History sites have been focusing attention on the commonwealth’s role in these global events as part of PHMC’s Pennsylvania at War initiative. As the centennial of the end of World War I approaches, the 75th anniversary of...
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The Sacrifices of Company C: Somerset County’s Valiant Soldiers in the Great War

In spring 2004 a resident of Somerset in Somerset County, Pennsylvania, chanced upon an aged postcard that had fallen behind a dresser many years before. Dated November 7, 1918, the postcard had been sent by the International Committee of the Red Cross in Geneva, Switzerland, and was addressed to “the Family of Herbert Foust,” a soldier of Company C, 110th Infantry Regiment, a Pennsylvania...
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Sowing the Seeds of Victory at Polk

In 1916, as battles raged across Europe, farmers in Entente countries exchanged sickles for rifles, leaving their ground untended. Poor harvests worldwide and increased U-boat activity in the Atlantic and the Mediterranean exacerbated an already depleted food supply. The need for additional production became increasingly apparent as the United States continued its support for France and Great...
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Recruitment, Conservation and Liberty Bonds: Posters and the War to End All Wars

The Pennsylvania State Archives holds a large and significant collection of World War I posters – 460 in all – that were hung throughout the Keystone State and around the country during the Great War. Many of these posters were produced on a national scale, although some were created specifically in Pennsylvania. The posters provide a fascinating glimpse at the means by which valued...
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World War I Ambulances

The face of warfare had changed by the time America entered World War I. For better or worse, the conflict was characterized by advances in technology, including air combat, chemical weaponry, and more effective firearms such as machine guns and automatic rifles. Automobiles also began supplementing horse-drawn wagons for a number of uses on the battlefront, including ambulatory medical care. In...
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The Dream of Security: Johnstown and Flood Control

They don’t take rain for granted in Johnstown anymore. Walking down Market Street or cruising Route 56, pedestrians may pause and drivers may slow as the first drops land. Anxious glances skyward reveal the unspoken thought: will it happen again? They are re­calling the terrible night in July 1977 when the rain fell and fell and the dream of a flood-free Johnstown shattered for­ever. That...
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“Little Doc”: Architect Of Modern Nursing

Lavinia Lloyd Dock (1858-1956) labored long and hard as educator, settlement worker, historian, author, editor, columnist, pacifist and radical suffragist. Beyond this, she strove to internationalize the public health movement while continually elevating the status of women. But her contributions to the field of nursing­ – which helped transform what was then a despised trade into a...
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Philadelphia Thirtieth Ward, 1940-1960

When the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, little did black residents in Philadelphia’s Thirtieth Ward suspect their neigh­borhood would change dramatically and commence a steady regression toward an economically depressed area.   I The ward’s grandest and most exciting days were achieved during the Second World War. The war placed money into the hands of...
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The Resurrection of Henry Ossawa Tanner

The annals of American art are crowded with artists who achieved renown in their life­times, but whose reputations – for a variety of reasons – faded after their demise. No story is more poignant than that of Henry Ossawa Tanner (1859-1937), a gifted African American painter who grew up in Philadelphia, but, to escape painful discrimination, pursued his career in France. Henry Ossawa...
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