PHMC Highlights presents stories and information about PHMC programs, events, exhibits and activities.

A new Civil War Trails experience, making the history of the epic event more accessible to present and future generations, was unveiled in Chambersburg, Franklin County, in April. The initiative features forty “story stops” and twenty-five historic destinations throughout southcentral Pennsylvania. Two principal steering committee members who spoke at the unveiling were PHMC Executive Director Barbara Franco and Mickey Rowley, deputy secretary of tourism for the Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED). The steering committee includes representatives from PHMC, Pennsylvania Heritage Society, Senator John Heinz History Center, and the Historical Society of Pennsylvania. The committee consults with the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation, tourism agencies, historical societies, Civil War sites, parks, colleges, and other experts.


A recently launched lecture series, recorded for statewide television broadcast by the Pennsylvania Cable Network (PCN), continues in association with PHMC and the Division of Publications and Sales. In March, PCN video recorded and broadcast the second lecture of the series held at the Pennsylvania State Bookstore, in the Commonwealth Keystone Building, Harrisburg, adjacent to The State Museum of Pennsylvania. Archivist Linda A. Ries, head of the PHMC’s archival programs section, spoke to the capacity audience and before the television cameras on “William Penn and His Charter.” Douglas A. Miller, site administrator of Pennsbury Manor, offered an analysis of Pennsylvania’s founder. A third PCN broadcast lecture and book signing in April featured Michael Barton, author of Harrisburg’s Old Eighth Ward.


Military weapons may seem unusual at the Pennsylvania Anthracite Heritage Museum (PAHM) in Scranton, but in 1902 the Pennsylvania National Guard brought powerful .45 caliber Gatling guns to northeastern Pennsylvania to restore order during a labor strike. On loan from PHMC’s Pennsylvania Military Museum, a Gatling gun, manufactured by Colt® Firearms Company, was conserved before being placed on display in an exhibit entitled “The Great Anthracite Coal Strike of 1902.” Photographed cleaning and waxing the weapon were University of Scranton intern Ryan Dively, PAHM curator John Fielding, and Pennsylvania Conservation Corps collections care crew members Joseph Ames and Darlene Holt.


In April, Dean Sylvester, historical horticulturist at Old Economy Village, Ambridge, Beaver County, demonstrated techniques for growing perennials and propagating plants from cuttings in the historic site’s heirloom garden and greenhouse. Sylvester also provided a tour and narrative of Old Economy’s ornamental gardens during the historic site’s fifteenth annual Spring Garden Workshop, “Preserving Our Botanical Heritage.” Workshop participants included Barbara Ridge and Kim A. SanGregorio .


The April 30, 2009, Pennsylvania Annual Energy Expo in the Commonwealth Keystone Building, Harrisburg, raised public awareness of energy conservation and environmental sustainability. Hosted by the Pennsylvania Department of General Services (DGS) Energy Management Office and the DGS Bureau of Procurement, one of the nearly sixty information booths included PHMC’s Division of Architecture and Preservation (DAP). Division Chief Barry A. Loveland and Preservation Construction Specialist Joseph E. Lauver fielded public inquiries. Supporting their effort was Project Manager and Architectural Designer Kent W. Steinbrunner, another key DAP employee whose professionalism is vital to PHMC’s mission of protecting and preserving Pennsylvania’s architectural and archaeological resources.