Shorts presents news briefs about current and forthcoming programs, events, exhibits and activities of historical and cultural institutions in Pennsylvania.

The first exhibition in Philadelphia devoted to identifying and honoring African American women tap dancers, “Plenty of Good Women Dancers: African American Women Hoofers from Philadelphia,” features glamorous photographs and dancers’ vivid recollec­tions portraying the golden age of swing and rhythm tap of the 1930s and 1940s. “Plenty of Good Women Dancers” celebrates the individuals who choreo­graphed numbers, produced shows, and who danced as tap acts, in the chorus line, in novelty acts, as song and dance teams, as exotic dancers, and in comedy acts. Organized by the Philadelphia Folklore Project, the exhibit is on view through Friday, March 21, 1997, at the Philadelphia Clef Club of Jazz and Performing Arts, 736-738 South Broad Street. For more information, write: Philadelphia Folklore Project, 1304 Wharton St., Philadelphia, PA 19147; or telephone (215) 468-7871.


Samuel Rosenberg (1896-1972) was Pittsburgh’s leading social realist painter and an influential art teacher from the 1930s through the 1960s. An exhibition entitled “Drawings by Samuel Rosenberg from the Permanent Collection” is on view at the Carnegie Museum of Art through Sunday, February 23, 1997. To obtain additional details, write: Carnegie Museum of Art, 4400 Forbes Ave., Pittsburgh, PA 15213-4080; or telephone (412) 622-3131. Admission is charged.


Artifacts and documents illustrating the history of the Amry of the Potomac, the largest of the Union’s fighting forces in the Civil War, are being exhibited through May 1, 1997, at the Civil War Library and Museum in Philadelphia. Objects featured in this exhibit include the uniform worn by Major General George Gordon Meade while commander of the Army at the Battle of Gettysburg, the sash and sword worn by Major General John F. Reynolds when he was killed during the Battle of Gettysburg, and flags, weapons, maps, and letters. Additional information is available by writing: Civil War Library and Museum, 1805 Pine St., Philadelphia, PA 19103; or by telephoning (215) 735-8196. Admission is charged.


Opening Friday, February 7, 1997, at the Allentown Art Museum is an exhibition featuring elaborately embroidered samplers and household linens made in the Lehigh Valley in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. “Needle Art of the Lehigh Valley” presents historic pieces, many containing names and dates of the makers’ families, which serve as genealogical records in themselves. The exhibition, continuing through May 11 [1997], also discusses design styles of needle­work schools for young girls in Easton, Bethlehem, and Kutztown. For more details, write: Allentown Art Museum, 31 North Fifth St., Allentown, PA 18105; or telephone (610) 432-4333. There is a charge for admission.


An exhibition of woodcut prints by Wharton Esherick, “dean of American craftsmen,” will open at the Wharton Esherick Museum on Saturday, March 1, 1997. The exhibition, entitled “Black on White,” will continue through August 31 [1997]. Additional information may be obtained by writing: Wharton Esherick Museum, Horseshoe Trail, P. O. Box 595, Paoli, PA 19301; or telephoning (610) 644-5822. Admission includes a guided tour of the artist’s residence and studio, housing more than two hundred original pieces.


On Friday, February 7, 1997, an African American film festival and panel discussion will be hosted by the Altoona Railroaders Memorial Museum. Two films, Miles of Smiles, Years of Struggle, and The Gandy Dancer, reflecting the African American experience in the railroading industry will be shown. Panelists and participants will discuss these films and their historical significance and analyze them in a broader social and cultural context. For more information, write: Altoona Railroaders Memorial Museum, 1300 Ninth Ave., Altoona, PA 16601; or telephone (814) 946-0834. Admission is charged.


By combining paintings, works on paper, and archival material drawn from its permanent collection and borrowed from local lenders, the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts will mount an exhibition entitled “The Sartain Family and Their Philadelphia Circle.” Opening on Friday, January 17, 1997, the exhibition marks the one hundredth anniversary of the death of John Sartain, the family patriarch. “The Sartain Family,” continuing through Sunday, April 13, coincides with a major symposium and citywide activities, organized by Moore College of Art and Design to recognize the contributions of the Sartains to Philadelphia’s cultural landscape from 1830 to 1930. Additional information is available by writing: Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, 118 North Broad St., Philadelphia, PA 19102; or by telephoning (215) 972-7600. Admission is charged.


“Of the Best Sort, but Plain: Delaware Valley Quaker Quilts” will be exhibited from Saturday, January 18, through Sunday, March 16, 1997, at the Brandywine River Museum in Chadds Ford. To obtain further information, write: Brandywine River Museum, P. O. Box 141, Chadds Ford, PA 19317; or tele­phone (610) 388-2700. There is an admission fee.


During the weekend of April 5-6, 1997, Rock Ford Plantation in Lancaster will come to life with an encampment staged by authentically costumed inter­preters to formally open the historic house museum for the season. Rock Ford Plantation was the home of Revolutionary War General Edward Hand. For more details, write: Rock Ford Plantation, 881 Rock Ford Rd., Lancaster, PA 17603; or telephone (717) 392-7223. There is an admission charge.


Dr. Marshall Becker will present a talk entitled “The Native Peoples of Pennsylvania: Indian Culture and History” at the Warren County Historical Society, Warren, on Tuesday, March 25, 1997. The presentation is being funded by the Pennsylvania Humanities Council (PHC) as part of its popular Commonwealth Speakers Program. Additional information may be obtained by writing: Warren County Historical Society, P. O. Box 427, Warren, PA 16365; or by telephoning (814) 723-1795. For information about PHC programs, telephone (800) 462-0442.


“Charter Day,” commemorating the 1681 granting of Pennsylvania by King Charles II to William Penn, will be celebrated on Sunday, March 9, 1997, by the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission (PHMC), which is offering free general admission to its historic sites and museums. More than two dozen attractions make up the PHMC’s popular and well-traveled Pennsylvania Trail of History. For more information, write: 1997 Charter Day, Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission, P. O. Box 1026, Harrisburg, PA 17108- 1026; or telephone (717) 787-2723 or 783-9882.