Currents

Pennsylvania Germans Historians trace the origins of Pennsylvania German settlement to late seventeenth-century Philadelphia and the arrival of the earliest immigrants. These arrivals came from many regions in what are now the countries of Germany, Poland, the Czech Republic, Switzerland, and the Alsace region of France. Lutheran, Reformed, Moravian, Catholic, Jewish, and Anabaptist (including...
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Muckraking the Governor: Samuel W. Pennypacker Battles Philadelphia’s Press

“… the country press endeavors to ascertain and further the interests of the people around them. In the large cities, what is popularly called ‘Yellow Journalism,’ with its gross headlines, its vulgar and perverted art, it’s relish for salacious events and horrible crimes, and all the other symptoms of newspaper disease, is gaining foothold.” – Governor...
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The Value of Pennsylvania History

George W. Bush won the presidential election of 2000 because the fifty states cast more electoral votes for him, even though more people actually voted for his opponent, Albert A. Gore Jr. The election reminded Americans about a curious institution called the Electoral College, and an equally peculiar system known as federalism in which each state conducts elections according to distinct laws...
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Out and About

Canis Major “I never met a pet I didn’t like,” pop icon Andy Warhol (1928–1987) — born Andrew Warhola in Pittsburgh — once wrote. The artist had many pets throughout his life, including his childhood dog, a lovable mutt named Lucy, more than a dozen Siamese cats, and his dachshunds Amos and Archie. His New York studio, the Silver Factory, had two resident felines, Black Lace and White Pussy, and...
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Built by the New Deal

With the nation mired in the grim depths of the Great Depression, industrial Pennsylvania was far from being immune to the financial instability with the closing of 5,000 manufacturing firms and the loss of 270,000 factory jobs by 1933. President Franklin Delano Roosevelt launched his New Deal, a series of innovative programs targeted to giving work to the unemployed, stabilizing a downward...
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Safe Harbor Iron Works Map, 1875

This section of an 1875 map contained in the Map Collection (Manuscript Group 11, Second Geological Survey, Map # 180–40) at the Pennsylvania State Archives depicts the site of the Safe Harbor Iron Works in Conestoga Township, Lancaster County, where the three-inch Ordnance Rifle designed by John Griffen (but commonly called a Griffin Gun) was first manufactured and tested in 1855. This wrought...
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Foot of Main Street, Phoenixville, Pa.

“Am spending a few days in this beautiful little city,” wrote Harry to a Miss Clara Waterman of Angola, New York, on April 5, 1909. He penned his message on the reverse of a penny postcard bearing an image entitled “View from the foot of Main Street, Showing Dam, Phoenixville, Pa.” A century ago, at the time of Harry’s visit, the Chester County community was...
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Letters

Best Years of My Life My family lived in Phoenixville from 1927 to 1938, and the brief history of the community [“Chester County: View from Foot of Main Street, Showing Dam, Phoenixville, Pa.”] in the Summer 2009 edition was of special interest. Also, the article following it, “A Modest Fountain on the Square” by Bill Double, generated more memories of my formative years...
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