Press Release: Celebrates the 50th Anniversary of Mammal Hall and its Restoration

Press Release: Celebrates the 50th Anniversary of Mammal Hall and its Restoration

Next month, The State Museum of Pennsylvania will celebrate 50 years of Mammal Hall, one of its most beloved exhibits, with a week of special programming beginning Wednesday, September 26, and culminating with a rededication ceremony on Sunday, September 30. Throughout the week-long celebration, visitors will have the opportunity to build their own diorama, walk …

Continue reading ‘Press Release: Celebrates the 50th Anniversary of Mammal Hall and its Restoration’ »

Press Release: The State Museum of Pennsylvania Earns National Award of Merit

Press Release: The State Museum of Pennsylvania Earns National Award of Merit

Harrisburg, PA – A permanent exhibit at The State Museum of Pennsylvania featuring the history of the Pennsylvania Turnpike has earned national recognition. The Leadership in History committee of the American Association for State and Local History (AASLH) has selected The State Museum as its 2017 Award of Merit winner. The honor specifically recognizes the …

Continue reading ‘Press Release: The State Museum of Pennsylvania Earns National Award of Merit’ »

How this rare Luzerne County bead blends history with technology

How this rare Luzerne County bead blends history with technology

In the early 1980s, Emanco Inc. archaeologists recovered a glass bead, three gunflints and two musket balls from the Gould Island site in Luzerne County, Pa. Most unusual was the discovery of this blue-and-white glass bead. On one side, the artifact depicts symbols of a man-in-the-moon and two stars. The reverse side features a shooting …

Continue reading ‘How this rare Luzerne County bead blends history with technology’ »

Mammal Hall project forecasted to restore groundhog’s original shadow

Mammal Hall project forecasted to restore groundhog’s original shadow

To scientists, it is known as Marmota monax, or the woodchuck. This medium-sized mammal found from Canada to southern Alabama goes by many common names, including groundhog, hoover pig, whistle pig and marmot. In various parts of Pennsylvania, this ubiquitous herbivore is known as a grundsow. Garden pest or meat for a stew, the groundhog …

Continue reading ‘Mammal Hall project forecasted to restore groundhog’s original shadow’ »

Schuylkill County Hercules : Toying with Pennsylvania’s mining history

Schuylkill County Hercules : Toying with Pennsylvania’s mining history

Handcrafted around 1950 by John Mayza of Schuylkill County for his nephew Dan Canavan, this toy dragline excavator is constructed from materials normally found at an anthracite coal colliery. Currently on exhibit at the Pennsylvania Anthracite Heritage Museum, the toy sports the name Hercules painted across the cab section. Interestingly, the name predates the artifact, …

Continue reading ‘Schuylkill County Hercules : Toying with Pennsylvania’s mining history’ »

Expedition North Pole: New Kensington surgeon brings home artistry of Inuit culture

Expedition North Pole: New Kensington surgeon brings home artistry of Inuit culture

More than 100 years ago, the race to claim the North Pole was a significant feat which many had tried, but none had succeeded. The opportunity to join Admiral Robert Peary’s 1908-1909 expedition was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for a young physician from western Pennsylvania. Doctor John W. Goodsell (1873-1949), a native of New Kensington, Westmoreland …

Continue reading ‘Expedition North Pole: New Kensington surgeon brings home artistry of Inuit culture’ »

Dorothea Dix: An early champion for the mentally ill

Dorothea Dix: An early champion for the mentally ill

Samuel B. Waugh, a well-known artist and native of Mercer, Pa., created this oil and canvas portrait of Dorothea Dix. His work became part of the permanent art collection at The State Museum of Pennsylvania in 2008. Previously, the portrait hung in the Dixmont State Hospital, named after its founder Dorothea Dix. The painting will …

Continue reading ‘Dorothea Dix: An early champion for the mentally ill’ »

“First Pennsylvanians”: Unearthing the most recent findings with Kurt Carr

“First Pennsylvanians”: Unearthing the most recent findings with Kurt Carr

For years, Kurt Carr sifted through manuals and guides in search a Pennsylvania archaeology book that could be easily read and digested by the general public.   He didn’t have much luck. So…he decided to write his own. Recently, “First Pennsylvanians: The Archaeology of Native Americans, co-authored by Carr and Roger W. Moeller, hit both …

Continue reading ‘“First Pennsylvanians”: Unearthing the most recent findings with Kurt Carr’ »

PA Historical and Museum Commission Presents “First Pennsylvanians: The Archaeology of Native Americans in Pennsylvania”

PA Historical and Museum Commission Presents “First Pennsylvanians: The Archaeology of Native Americans in Pennsylvania”

  Harrisburg, PA – The Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission today announced the publication of “First Pennsylvanians: The Archaeology of Native Americans in Pennsylvania.” The first comprehensive review of Native American archaeology in Pennsylvania for a general audience, the book is based on recent findings and previously unpublished research. With more than 240 illustrations of …

Continue reading ‘PA Historical and Museum Commission Presents “First Pennsylvanians: The Archaeology of Native Americans in Pennsylvania”’ »

50 Years of History: The State Museum and Archives Complex

50 Years of History: The State Museum and Archives Complex

  The State Museum of Pennsylvania and the Pennsylvania State Archives were physically joined in a new, modern architectural complex 50 years ago.  Designed by the Harrisburg-based architectural firm of Lawrie and Green, the complex opened in 1964 and was dedicated in October 1965. First known as the William Penn Memorial Museum and State Archives, …

Continue reading ‘50 Years of History: The State Museum and Archives Complex’ »