Bookshelf

The Pennsylvania Game Commission, 1895-1995 by Joe Kosack Pennsylvania Game Commission, 1995 (233 pages, cloth, $12.95) Subtitled 100 Years of Wildlife Conservation, this book opens by placing the reader on Commonwealth soil with the arrival, about 1610, of the first white settlers – long before the Pennsylvania Game Commission existed. As the earliest settlers scrabbled to make a life in...
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Disaster – Or Murder? – In the Mines

In Winter 1959, after two days of drenching rain and unseasonably high temperatures, the frozen Susquehanna River began surging wildly. A recording station in Wilkes­-Barre, Luzerne County, measured the rise of the water level from 2.1 feet on Tuesday, January 20, to just below the 22-foot flood stage by Friday night. Wary Wilkes-Barre area residents kept a close watch, knowing that the river...
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Connie Mack’s ’29 Triumph: The Rise and Fall of the Philadelphia Athletics Dynasty by William C. Kashatus McFarland & Company, Inc., 1999 (216 pages, cloth, $28.50) To baseball historians, Connie Mack (1862-1956) is a star among managers. His professionalism, penetrating knowledge of the game, and ability to handle his players helped him claim nine pennants, win five World...
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Born to Organize

For nearly two decades, from 1944 to 1963, in northeastern Pennsylvania’s Wyoming Valley, a center of anthracite mining, Min L. Matheson (1909-1992) and the International Ladies’ Garment Workers’ Union (ILGWU) were synonymous with notions of “community.” A charitable event? Count on the ILGWU to provide volunteers and raise money. Patients at an area veterans’...
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Joe Palooka, Wilkes-Barre Boxing Legend with a National Punch

In 1921, Hammond Fisher (1900-1955), a young staff artist for the Wilkes-Barre Record, was conversing with a local boxer, Joe Hardy, on Wilkes-Barre’s Public Square. The two were comparing their childhoods in the rough neighborhoods of the anthracite region community where they had learned to fight at an early age. Some, like Hardy, took their street skills to the local gymnasiums and...
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Wyoming Monument

Northeastern Pennsylvania’s Wyoming Valley was a focus of British military strategy during the American Revolution because its three thousand residents constituted the largest population center on the Susquehanna River. The British believed that by eliminating this stronghold of American patriotism they could dominate the frontier. Major John Butler organized a force of two hundred and...
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Baseball’s One-Armed Wonder: An Interview with the Late Great, Pete Gray

On Sunday, May 20, 1945, thirty-six thousand spectators packed Yankee Stadium, in the Bronx, for a doubleheader that pitted the New York Yankees against the defending American league champions, the St. Louis Browns. The Yankees, who had finished in third place in the previous season, six games behind the Browns, had something to prove that afternoon. Even though the World War II had stripped...
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Dapper Dan Flood: The Controversial Life of a Congressional Power Broker by William C. Kashatus published by the Pennsylvania State University Press, 2010; 350 pages, cloth, $29.95 William C. Kashatus’s Dapper Dan Flood: The Controversial Life of a Congressional Power Broker brings to life one of the most quixotic individuals to ever have served in the U.S. House of Representatives. His subject,...
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