Political Leadership: A Catalyst for Special Education

President Kennedy was admired for his efforts to help retarded citizens, and most people realize that these efforts were motivated, in part, by his personal awareness of mental retardation. But few people know of the dramatic story of personal motivation moving.govern­ment bureaucracy to assist the handicapped in Pennsyl­vania. It has been nearly half a century since Henry Lanius, a blind...
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Somerset County: Paths through the Roof Garden

Referring to the high elevation and the scenic quality of the region, Gov. Martin G. Brumbaugh called Somerset County “the Roof Garden of Pennsylvania” at an annual Farmers’ Day picnic in 1916. Since then. the description has become a familiar and respected title; the words “Roof Garden” have been in­corporated in the names of various businesses, and the complete...
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The Search by Blacks For Employment and Opportunity: Industrial Education in Philadelphia

I Historian Sol Cohen describes the industrial­-education movement at the end of the nineteenth century as an effort to relegate the new immigrant to the lower levels of society. Placing emphasis on the “status rivalry” between the middle-class progressives and the new immigrant, Cohen views industrial education as the means used by the progressives to keep the immi­grant in his...
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The Romance of Pennsylvania Agriculture

When a small group of men met at Lancaster’s Leopard Hotel in August 1916 to organize the first Pennsylvania Farm Show, they did not have in mind mammoth displays of fifty thousand dollar tractors, mountains of steaming baked potatoes or presentations of grand champion livestock ribbons. They didn’t envision a state fair of the type that had become so popular in places like Iowa,...
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Valley Forge: Commemorating the Centennial of a National Symbol

It is June 17, 1893. Ten men are meeting at the venerable Historical Society of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. Gov. Robert E. Pattison has recently signed a law entitled “An Act Provid­ing for the acquisition by the State of certain ground at Valley Forge for a public park, and making an appropriation therefor.” He has carefully selected these individuals and commissioned them with...
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A Century of Conservation: The Story of Pennsylvania’s State Parks

Pennsylvania’s state park system is celebrating its centennial as one of the country’s largest and most popular recreational attractions. Each year, thirty-six million people visit one (or more) of the Keystone State’s one hundred and fourteen parks to picnic, hike, swim, boat, camp, ski, snowmobile, fish, hunt, or raft white water rapids. This sprawling collec­tion of open...
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Banned In Pennsylvania!

During the nearly half century of its powerful reign, no one exemplified the Keystone State’s film censorship board more dramatically than Philadelphian Edna Rothwell Carroll (1894-1981), its chairman from 1939 to 1955. Determined, self-possessed, and intensely devoted to her mission – to protect the public from movies deemed immoral – she had been active in Republican Party...
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John A. Brashear (1840-1920)

Somewhere beneath the stars is work which you alone were meant to do. Never rest until you have found it,” proclaims a plaque at a small museum on Pittsburgh’s South Side. For the author, John Alfred Bras­hear (1840-1920), the stars were his life’s work. At the age of nine, encouraged by his grandfather, Brashear peered through a telescope with a lens ground from fire­hardened...
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