Trailheads

What is there left to say about 2020? In previous issues, we’ve chronicled the response of PHMC’s Trails of History sites to the COVID-19 pandemic. As of early October, it looked unlikely that sites would reopen by the end of the year. The uncertainty surrounding reopening sites and welcoming visitors in person has caused a great deal of frustration on all fronts. Nevertheless, our staff and...
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Trailheads

Here we are again. As of mid-July, PHMC’s Trails of History sites and museums remain closed to the public amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Special events and programs, including Landis Valley Village & Farm Museum’s Herb & Garden Faire, the Pennsylvania Lumber Museum’s Bark Peelers’ Festival, and Somerset Historical Center’s Mountain Craft Days, have been canceled. Grounds reopened with...
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Trailheads

In a normal year, this column would be devoted to a preview of summer events on the Pennsylvania Trails of History. This is not a normal year. As my deadline approaches, sites remain closed to the public, with events and activities canceled. We had to forego the Keystone Summer Internship program and postpone our annual Volunteer of the Year recognition event (although we did manage a virtual...
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Trailheads

Autumn is a wonderful time on the Pennsylvania Trails of History. Many travelers combine a visit to one of PHMC’s historic sites and museums with a leisurely drive along Pennsylvania’s scenic highways to view the beautiful fall foliage. The days grow shorter, but there are still plenty of activities at our sites and museums as summer gives way to fall and early winter.   Celebrating the...
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Trailheads

History never truly sleeps on the Pennsylvania Trails of History, but winter is generally a slower season with reduced schedules and fewer programs and events. Charter Day, the celebration of Pennsylvania’s founding (the second Sunday in March), is the traditional start to our spring season. As the weather warms, activity increases at the sites and museums. The landscape loses its dull winter...
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2017 Trails

Another year has passed on the Pennsylvania Trails of History. Exhibits, special events, thousands of visiting schoolchildren, more than a few beer and wine festivals, and several battle reenactments are now recorded in the books. As a way of wrapping up the year, we look back at a few milestones along the way. But before we turn our attention to the World War I centennial and an overview of...
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Artful Trails

In honor of the 50th Art of the State exhibition, open through September 10, 2017, at The State Museum of Pennsylvania, we’re exploring art at other historic sites and museums along PHMC’s Pennsylvania Trails of History. As visual storytellers, our sites employ a multidisciplinary approach to documenting and sharing Pennsylvania heritage. Artworks frequently play a role in the study...
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World War I Centennial Trails

As part of PHMC’s Pennsylvania at War initiative, sites on the Pennsylvania Trails of History have planned programs and events to commemorate the centennial of America’s entry into World War I. Check the websites listed below or the weekly Trailheads blog and its monthly program pages for updates and additions to events and activities.   Erie Maritime Museum On April 6, 1917,...
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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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From the Executive Director

For many of us, spring is the traditional season to think about nature and the great outdoors, but here at the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission (PHMC), we think about it all year long. It’s hard to separate Pennsylvania’s history from its natural history; in fact, PHMC is officially charged with “the conservation of Pennsylvania’s historic and natural...
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