Chicken and Waffles: The Pennsylvania Story

In his 1861 local-color novel The Young Parson, German Reformed minister Peter Seibert Davis (1828–92) described chicken and waffles as the “stereotypical” Sunday supper among the Pennsylvania Dutch. How this dish moved from a regional identity food into mainstream American cookery is indeed a complicated story, especially since chicken and waffles reached its height of popularity during the...
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Honeymooning in the Poconos

The beautiful Pocono Mountains in northeast Pennsylvania have been attracting visitors since the mid-19th century, but in the post-World War II years the area became known as the perfect place for honeymooners. The tourist tradition of the Poconos began with the establishment of summer resort hotels offering city residents from Philadelphia and New York City the opportunity to cool off in style...
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Hotel Lykens

For many years, anthracite coal mining was the main source of livelihood for the residents of Lykens, a borough in northern Dauphin County. By the early 1920s, the industry was in decline, causing the community’s population and economy to waver. Meanwhile across the country, as automobile ownership was increasing, community leaders noticed that hotels and other services associated with travel...
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Shankweiler’s Hotel and Restaurant

  Shankweiler’s Hotel and Restaurant operated on Old U.S. 22 in the village of Fogelsville, Lehigh County, just west of Allentown. As this c. 1940 postcard notes, the restaurant was well known for its delicious chicken and waffles, a meal that reflects the Pennsylvania Dutch heritage of the area. This local landmark opened in June 1934 under the management of Wilson and Daisy Shankweiler,...
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Christian Frederic Koch: Farrier and Blacksmith

Today, people are rediscovering the value. beauty and utility of crafted items, qualities which our forefathers knew weU. Older gen­erations quickly came to appreciate the skills of craftsmen and relied upon the quality of their work. Of all the artisans, however, the blacksmith, per­haps, was the most respected. His workplace was an essential part of every community and neighborhood, offering...
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Clinton County: Still Part of Penn’s Woods

Clinton County, one of the sixth-class counties of Pennsyl­vania, occupies 900 square miles of river valley and mountain land near the geographical center of the state. Nearly two-thirds of the area re­mains forested, al though most of the trees are second growth after a near denuding of the land by a booming lumber industry in the second half of the last century. It was in the wood­lands of...
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Columbia County is Diversity

From the time of the earliest settlements during the Revolu­tionary War era to the present day, Columbia County has been three sepa­rate neighborhoods-the southern re­gion (Catawissa and Centralia); the northern area (Benton and Millville) and the north bank of the Susquehanna River (Bloomsburg and Berwick). They are distinguishable by varied physical environments, ethnic origins and social...
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The Great Circus Train Wreck of 1893

Six-year-old Harry Snyder had slept fit­fully and awoke at dawn to the first silts of sunlight piercing his bed­room window. He heard the softly muffled rumble of a train descending the nearby mountain. The sound grew alarmingly louder with an ur­gency that sent a chill through the young boy’s body. He leaped out of bed and rushed to the window to see the train gliding around the curve in...
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The Last Frontier: Venango County Indians, Oil, Ghost Towns

Venango County. Its name is derivation of a the Seneca Indian word earliest for explorers “French and Creek.” Its earliest explorers and settlers were the French, shortly followed by the English. At one time, the territory was claimed simultaneously by France, and the colonies of Virginia and Pennsyl­vania. But Venango County’s rich history bespeaks vigorous pioneering a spirit...
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Dauphin County: Chocolates, Coal, and a Capital

Dauphin County celebrates its two hundredth anniver­sary this year. The events and themes that are the history of the county reflect the experience of Pennsylvania and the United States. Dauphin County has never been a homogeneous commu­nity; indeed, it is difficult to consider it as a single commu­nity. From the beginning it has comprised individuals of diverse ethnic, national and religious...
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