DNC memorabilia highlights Philadelphia’s presidential past

DNC memorabilia highlights Philadelphia’s presidential past

This week, Democratic delegates and party loyalists from around the country are converging on Philadelphia to formally select their candidate. It promises to be a history-making convention, but as this grouping of ephemera reveals, it’s not the first time that Democrats have chosen the City of Brotherly Love for its stage. That distinction was earned …

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World Series photograph illustrates one governor’s love of baseball

World Series photograph illustrates one governor’s love of baseball

In this photo preserved by the Pennsylvania State Archives, Gov. David L. Lawrence proudly shows off the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette headline detailing the Pittsburgh Pirates’ victory over the New York Yankees in the 1960 World Series. Pirate second baseman Bill Mazeroski hit a home run on a 1-0 pitch from Yankee hurler Ralph Terry over the …

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Clock at Old Economy Village keeps time with history

Clock at Old Economy Village keeps time with history

The main hall of Old Economy Village’s George Rapp House features a tall case clock with quite a history. Its story began in Harmony, Pa., north of Pittsburgh, where the Harmony Society formally organized in 1805. Just arriving in America from Württemberg (now part of Germany), the 800 members of the society pooled their resources …

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Bob Hoffman: From World War I veteran to legendary weightlifter

Bob Hoffman: From World War I veteran to legendary weightlifter

For decades, the name Robert C. “Bob” Hoffman has remained synonymous with U.S. Olympic Weightlifting and the founding of the York Barbell Co. Known as the “Father of World Weightlifting,” Hoffman gained national recognition in 1927 when he took home the sport’s heavyweight championship. However, before he became a pioneer in the fields of weightlifting, …

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The Pennsylvania Turnpike: The journey of the Irwin interchange tollbooth

The Pennsylvania Turnpike: The journey of the Irwin interchange tollbooth

From 1940 until the early 1980s, this tollbooth stood at the Irwin interchange of the Pennsylvania Turnpike, America’s first superhighway. When the first section of the turnpike opened to traffic Oct. 1, 1940, the town of Irwin, some 30 miles east of Pittsburgh in Westmoreland County, served as its western terminus. Hundreds of curiosity seekers …

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Drake Well rig models highlight 1860s oil drilling technology

Drake Well rig models highlight 1860s oil drilling technology

In 1860, Josiah Winger (1845-1916) began drilling oil wells along the Allegheny River, living long enough to become known as the “oldest living driller”. In 1913, he made and donated four drilling rig models to the Drake Memorial Museum in Titusville, Pa.. Many of the artifacts from that museum are now housed at the Drake …

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Heinz Ketchup: A flavorful message in a glass bottle

Heinz Ketchup: A flavorful message in a glass bottle

Henry John Heinz wasn’t the first ketchup maker to drop vinegar and tomatoes into their recipes. James Mease, in 1812, published a formula for the table sauce made with tomatoes along with brandy and vinegar. However, Heinz became one of the few processed food makers of his day to insist on using high-quality ingredients that …

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Pennsylvania hardware stirs up sound effects for “Night of the Living Dead”

Pennsylvania hardware stirs up sound effects for “Night of the Living Dead”

Fans of the 1968 independent horror movie,  “Night of the Living Dead, ” might not know that the sound effects and music heard in the film were mixed and recorded on audio equipment used by Hardman Eastman Studios in Pittsburgh. That year, studio owner Karl Hardman helped produce and later starred in the cult classic …

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Andy Warhol and his Little Red Book: The early days of social photography

Andy Warhol and his Little Red Book: The early days of social photography

  Television talk show host Dick Cavett is known to audiences for his conversational style and engaging in witty banter with celebrity guests. But, have you have ever seen him in a wetsuit? How about riding on the back of a horse? In December 1971, Andy Warhol, one of Pennsylvania’s most prominent modern artists, took …

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