Trailheads

Summer is the busiest season on the Pennsylvania Trails of History. Daytrippers enjoy a wealth of options for guided or free-range touring. Families find places to create lasting memories and help stave off the dreaded “learning loss” of summer. Outdoor enthusiasts break up their recreational time, or wait out bad weather, with a gallery visit or two. Numerous summer camp offerings are available...
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Branch Line Empires by Michael Bezilla with Luther Gette

Branch Line Empires The Pennsylvania and the New York Central Railroads by Michael Bezilla, with Luther Gette Indiana University Press, 370 pp., cloth $55, e-book $54.99 During my time as a student at Penn State, I saw plenty of railroad tracks in Centre and Clearfield counties. Many of them were weed-grown and disused. I thought, “Somebody built these, but why? And what happened?” Now author...
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Loleta Recreation Area

Upon his inauguration on March 4, 1933, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt set about combating the economic crisis of the Great Depression with his New Deal program of economic reforms and public work projects. One of the most popular programs established that year was “Roosevelt’s Tree Army,” the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC), which was part of the Emergency Conservation Work (ECW) Act....
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CCC Worker Statue, Pennsylvania Lumber Museum

America’s woodlands were still in recovery from deforestation when the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) was established in 1933 as one of several work relief programs initiated by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s New Deal. The program achieved two ends with a single effort by giving young men the opportunity to work to provide income for their unemployed families while simultaneously...
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2016 Trails

In 2015 the Pennsylvania Lumber Museum in Galeton, Potter County, officially opened its expanded visitor center to the public. The museum also debuted Challenges and Choices in Pennsylvania’s Forests, an artifact-rich exhibit exploring the history of the lumber industry, the rise of the conservation movement and professional forestry, the Civilian Conservation Corps, and current best practices...
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PHMC Highlights

Art of the State 2016 More than 500 guests visited The State Museum of Pennsylvania on June 26 to attend the opening of the 49th annual Art of the State. The juried exhibition, cosponsored by The State Museum and the nonprofit Jump Street, with WITF as a media sponsor, showcases 122 pieces from artists around the state. At the opening, 20 artists received awards in five categories: craft,...
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2015 Trails

It is time once again to look back at the past year on the Pennsylvania Trails of History. What follows is a scrapbook for 2015, with highlights of events and programs at PHMC’s historic sites and museums.   Milestones and Anniversaries In May, the Pennsylvania Lumber Museum held a much-anticipated ribbon-cutting ceremony for its newly expanded visitor center. The building and community...
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Warren County: Gem of the Alleghenies

“To the south … an expanse of arable land upon the gentle slope from the volley to the distant heights, dotted with green fields, waving grain, fruitful orchards and farm buildings with ever and anon an oasis of growing timber, remnants of the dense growth of stately pine and hemlock that formerly forested the region, present an alluring scene of beauty and grandeur, excelling...
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The Brunswick Tannery

“one of the largest and most complete establishments of its kind in the world”   During the 1870s and the early part of the twentieth century, the hemlock sole-leather tanning industry boomed in northern Pennsylvania. As reported in the Scientific American, January 21, 1882: From Port Jervis almost to Lake Erie, a vast industry is conducted in the manufacture of hemlock sole...
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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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