The Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania: Smithsonian Affiliation and New Museum History Book

Smithsonian Affiliations has accepted the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania as one of its newest members, clearing the way for the eventual exhibition of Smithsonian artifacts at the site in Strasburg, Lancaster County. “This type of association with the Smithsonian gives you instant credibility” said Jeffrey Bliemeister, director of the Railroad Museum. “It’s a good marketing tool that I hope...
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The Ship Hotel: Afloat with the Lincoln Highway’s Most Unusual Landmark

In 1931 the first and only baby was born at the Grand View Point Hotel, 18 miles west of Bedford, Bedford County. Little Clara was the pride of her grandfather Herbert J. Paulson (1874-1973), a Dutch immigrant who had built the hotel on the side of a mountain along the winding, two-lane Lincoln Highway. Clara grew up in the hotel, which “Captain” Paulson turned into the ship-shaped...
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A Historical Sketch of Indiana County

Indiana County was named for the native Indians. During historic times the two principal tribes were the Delawares and Shawnees. Being reluctant to give up their lands, the Indians struggled desperately to keep out the tide of European settlers. Perhaps the first white settler to enter Indiana County was James LeTort, an Indian trader, about 1726-27. A place called “Letart’s...
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Historic Preservation in Pennsylvania: A Primer

Depending on the individual, historic preser­vation evokes a myriad of interpretations. To the local historical society, it’s restoring the town’s oldest structure to a house-museum showcasing collections of period antiques. To community planners, it often results in a challenge of saving the best while destroying the rest. And to many, historic preservation means little more than a...
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Blair County: Center of Transportation

Blair County was among the last counties created by the Pennsylvania General Assembly. One factor which delayed the establishment of an additional county in the southern portion of central Pennsylvania was geography. The rugged, eastern slopes of the Appalachian Mountains, in which Blair County was eventually located, diverted settlers to other areas. Only after the discovery of iron ore...
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That Was the Week That Was: The First Battle of Harrisburg

It is widely conceded that the major military event of summer 1861 was the First Battle of Bull Run on Sun­day, July 21. The battle lasted only one day, but it caused great humiliation and forced important changes in the North’s subsequent approach to conducting the war. The creation of the Military District of the Potomac under Gen. George B. McClellan several days later signaled a reform...
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Shorts

On Saturday, May 14, 1994, guides at Hopewell Furnace National Historic Site will demonstrate traditional sheep­-shearing methods with both period and modern hand-held tools. They will also discuss the importance of farms and farming practices to an 1830s industrial community. To obtain additional details, write: Hopewell Furnace National Historic Site, 2 Mark Bird Ln., Elverson, PA 19520; or...
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Lost and Found

Lost Following World War II, the United States Steel Corporation’s massive Homestead Works in Allegheny County employed nearly fifteen thousand work­ers. The sprawling works, site of the infamous Homestead Steel Strike of 1892, closed in July 1986 and demolition began soon after. But all is not lost. While much of the plant is gone, there are plans to pre­serve the Pinkerton Landing, site...
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Currents

To Be Modern In 1921, Philadelphia’s venerable Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts mounted the first comprehensive display of American modernist works in an American museum with the ground­breaking “Exhibition of Paintings and Drawings Showing the Later Tendencies in Art.” The exhibition’s selection com­mittee, composed of such “moderns” as Thomas Hart...
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Lost and Found

Lost Opened in 1938, the Bangor Park Swimming Pool was built by the Works Progress Administration and the Borough of Bangor, located in Northampton County’s “slate belt.” Its design, conceived by architect Wesley Blintz, was unusual: instead of being dug into the ground, the huge pool was built above the ground, and locker rooms, lobby, and concession stand were tucked below...
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