Letters to the Editor

Letters presents readers' comments and reactions to specific articles in Pennsylvania Heritage, the initiatives of PHMC, and other developments in the historical, cultural and museum communities of Pennsylvania.

Cover Story

The photographs used on the cover of Pennsylvania Heritage usually tell a story in themsel­ves. The painting of the burial of Gen. Edward Braddock on the last issue was stunning. Does the Pennsylvania Histor­ical and Museum Commission own this piece? How can I learn more about the artist?

Dolores E. Acta
Buffalo, N. Y.

Burial of Braddock was painted by Howard Pyle (1853-1911), noted painter, illustrator, teacher, lecturer, muralist and magazine art editor. Born in Wilmington, Delaware, he eventually became well known as a leader of the Brandywine River School, which included Frank Schoonover and N. C. Wyeth. For additional information, see Howard Pyle by Henry C. Pitz (New York: Clarkson N. Potter, 1975). Burial of Braddock is part of the collec­tions of the Boston Public Library, which graciously allowed its use.

 

Philadelphia Television

Edie Adams’s charming pic­ture in the fall issue along with the letters concerning Linda Kowall’s article on early Philadelphia television (see “Pennsylvania’s First Televi­sion Station: ‘Loving What We Were Doing,'” spring 1987), which I lived through for several years of medical school and residency, reminded me of what a wonderful enter­tainer she was. After Ernie Kovacs’s death, she added to Pennsylvania’s heritage of gumption and honesty in the way she rolled up her sleeves and went to work to satisfy his creditors. If the author could let Miss Adams know that she was – and is still – an inspira­tion to me and undoubtedly to many others, she might enjoy it.

John A. Fust, M. D.
Erie, Pa.

 

The Brothers Langenheim

I very much enjoyed the article in the fall 1987 edition entitled “Fathers of Modern Photogra­phy: The Brothers Langenheim” by Ellen NicK­enzie Lawson. In reading Old Philadelphia in Early Photo­graphs, 1839-1914, I found a photograph of John Krider’s Shop taken about 1871 and credited to William and Fre­derick Langenheim. The shop was located at Walnut and Second streets.

Gilles Dupre
Laval, Canada

 

A Tragic Defeat

The story of Gen. Edward Braddock’s tragic defeat in the winter issue (see “Into the Valley of Death” by Iola B. Parker) made me realize how tenuous the settling of the frontier must have been for our forefathers. The illustra­tions made me sense the utter loneliness they battled in addition to the opposition. The diary account gave noth­ing less than a chilling picture of a wholesale bloodbath dur­ing which chaos reigned. This article captured the spirit and determination of the early pioneers more than anything else I have ever read.

Janice E. Drumheller
Allentown, Pa.

 

A Booklover’s Dream

Linda Kowall’s article, “The Man Who Bought Alice in Wonderland” (winter 1988) was a booklover’s dream. Although I am not a book collector, I did enjoy the spellbinding accounts of A. S. W. Rosen­bach’s exploits throughout the world. Another Pennsylvanian makes the books – if you’ll pardon the expression! Let’s have more stories on famous Pennsylvanians who helped make history.

John W. Capp, Sr.
Westmoreland, Pa.

 

During the next year, several articles will deal specifically with individuals whose contributions affected, in no small way, Penn­sylvania’s history and culture. One of the most poignant of these articles is a full-length portrayal of department store magnate John Wanamaker, often titled “the Merchant Prince,” which will appear – complete with vintage photographs – in the winter 1989 issue.