Museums and Historic Sites presents news and information about the historic sites and museums of PHMC.

Waterford Heritage Days

Waterford will celebrate the Bicentennial with its third annual Waterford Heritage Days, July 9–11 [1976]. A three-day celebration, with concerts, parades, a military reenactment, a hot air balloon launch, a craft show, an antique show and displays will be featured. Home cooked food will be avail­able.

Waterford, site of Fort LeBoeuf, boasts an unusual amount of history. Fort LeBoeuf Museum tells the story of those early days. The festival is directed and totally funded by the local persons and is a “grass roots” celebration. In 1974 and 1975 10,000 persons were entertained.


Museums and Historic Sites Rural Life and Culture Institute

The Twentieth Annual Institute of Pennsylvania Rural Life and Culture will be held at the Pennsylvania Farm Museum near Lancaster June 22-25 [1976].

The Institute’s theme, “Our American Rural Heritage,” will be developed through the following seminars: Sinews of Independence; Thomas R. Brendel’s Collection of Pennsylvania German Folklore, Proverbs, and Remedies; Barn Architecture of Pennsylvania; Books and Broadsides of the Pennsylvania Germans; Revolutionary War Weapons and Accoutrements; and Pennsylvania Antiques – 1976 Edition.

Techniques of Traditional Craftsmanship will be intro­duced through the listed workshops: Folk Painting on Glass; Ryestraw Basketry; Traditional Modes of Penmanship; Patchwork Quilting; Working on the Potter’s Wheel; Tradi­tional Tinsmithing.

Additional information can be obtained by writing to the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission Institute, P.O. Box 1026, Harrisburg 17120.


Farm Museum’s Textile Exhibit

The Homespun Textile Tradition of the Pennsylvania Germans is the subject of a major new exhibit at the Pennsylvania Farm Museum of Landis Valley. Opening in March, the exhibit will remain in the museum’s Orientation Building gallery throughout 1976. A catalog of the exhibit, published by the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission, will be available in the Spring.

The unique exhibit brings together a wide range of items representative of the textiles owned and used by Penn­sylvania German farm families in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. The items on exhibit are all made of homespun flax, wool, hemp, or cotton fibers. Items on exhibit range from linen sheets, towels, and shirts to woolen coverlets, mittens, and stock­ings. Utilitarian items such as an unbleached tow wagon cover, a hemp bed rope, and a tow grain bag are included as well as decorative pieces such as linen samplers and show towels. The items in the exhibit are from the Farm Museum’s collection and from several private collections. Most of the items have never before been on public display.

The 64-page exhibit catalog, titled The Homespun Textile Tradition of the Pennsylvania Germans, contains 100 photographs – six in color – of items in the exhibit. The introduction to the catalog was written by Alan G. Keyser and Ellen Gehret of Montgomery Coun­ty. Working as a team. Mr. Keyser and Mrs. Gehret have done extensive re­search into hand spinning and weaving in southeastern Pennsylvania. Their account of the processing of native and imported fibers helps the reader under­stand the significance of homespun tex­tiles in the lives of Pennsylvania German farm families.

The Pennsylvania Farm Museum of Landis Valley is located on Route 272 approximately four miles north of Lan­caster. The museum is an outdoor mu­seum of Pennsylvania agriculture and country life with over twenty major ex­hibition buildings. The Farm Museum is administered by the PHMC.


Valley Forge Honored

Valley Forge has been honored as the eighth historic site in the nation by a joint resolution of Congress.

Ceremonies formally recognizing the tribute conferred on the Revolutionary War shrine were held December 15, 1975. Valley Forge is the first such site to be so honored in Pennsylvania. The White House and Washington Monu­ment are among the other seven sites.

The site is administered by the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission as one of the historic sites on the Pennsylvania Trail of History.

United States Sen. Hugh Scott presented a flag that has flown over the nation’s Capitol for raising at the 2,225-acre park to Mrs. Annamaria Malloy, chairman of the Valley Forge State Park Commission. Senator Scott and a party of Congressmen and government officials flew from Washington for the ceremony.

Valley Forge, a shrine most strongly associated by the American public with the sacrifices that won American freedom, is one of the significant sites in the Bicentennial observance.