William Strayhorn

Although jazz composer and arranger William “Billy” Strayhorn was born in Dayton, Ohio, in 1915, his family moved to the Homewood section of Pittsburgh when he was five years old. His parents, Lillian and James Strayhorn, were bright and ambitious, but were never able to break out of their modest means. Young Strayhorn played his grandmother’s piano from the moment he was able...
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From the Editor

Copperhead? Mention the word and most people immediately think of Agkistrodon contortrix — one of three venomous snakes native to Pennsylvania — easily recognizable by its striking reddish-brown markings. In the mid-nineteenth century, Pennsylvania was a hotbed of Copperheads. They were venomous. Vehement. Vitriolic. But reptilian they were not. The Keystone State’s Copperheads were a rare...
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Chestnut Tree Blight Disease Commission

Not all of the records relating to forestry in Pennsylvania were created by large permanent state agencies such as the Department of Forests and Waters (see “Reviving — and Revising — the Reputation of Ralph Elwood Brock” by Rachel L. Jones Williams in the fall 2007 issue). A 1912 diagram accompanying a field inspection report for the Mahoning Valley in Carbon County, for example, is among the...
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