New Historical Markers Recognize Pittsburgh Civil War Fort and Renowned Candy Maker's First Store in Philadelphia
PHMC Approves 43 New State Historical Markers
HARRISBURG, Pa., March 26 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The site of a Civil War fort in Pittsburgh and a renowned candy maker's first store in Philadelphia are among the 43 new state historical markers that have been approved to be added to the nearly 2,200 familiar signs that dot roads and streets across Pennsylvania. The Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission approved the new markers. The familiar, blue-with-gold-lettering signs tell the story of people and events, like Betsy Ross' contribution to the Revolutionary War effort as a woman and a Quaker, to a Philadelphia mayor who championed historic preservation and urban renewal, to an amusement park and recreational haven serving coal miners, and to the woman who popularized gospel music. "State historical markers serve to inform people of the fascinating history of our state," said PHMC Executive Director Barbara Franco. "Travelers seek out the markers and often use them as an opportunity to learn more about the subjects they tell about." The plaques are nominated by the general public and approved by the commission on an annual basis. Once approved, local communities plan public ceremonies to unveil the markers. For more information about the Pennsylvania Historical Marker Program, visit www.phmc.state.pa.us. The Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission is the official history agency of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. EDITOR'S NOTE: The following is a list of the newly approved state historical markers: Name of Marker -- County -- Description Fort Brunot -- Allegheny -- The U.S. Army in 1863 ordered construction of fortifications to defend the Pittsburgh area from invasion by the Confederate Army. This fort was example of little-known Civil War activity in western Pennsylvania. John Youie Woodruff -- Allegheny -- He was an African-American track-and-field athlete who won a gold medal at the 1936 Berlin Olympics. Ironically, while honored in Nazi Germany, he returned to the U.S. and was denied participation in his home country. Kuskusky Path -- Allegheny -- This recognizes an early Native American path also used by hunters, traders, soldiers and prisoners for most of the 1700s. It was a direct route from Ft. Pitt/Duquesne, a major trade center, to Kuskusky (now New Castle). Many early homes and churches were built along the path. Pittsburgh Sanitary Fair -- Allegheny -- This event raised thousands of dollars to care for sick and wounded Union soldiers during the Civil War. Proceeds also were used to erect a home for disabled veterans. Washington Bouquet Meeting -- Bedford -- At a meeting on July 29, 1758, Col. George Washington and Col. Henry Bouquet addressed the issue of two routes to Pittsburgh, the old Bedford Road to the south or cutting a new "Forbes Road" to the north along the Raystown Path. The decision to construct the new road was critical to the success of the French & Indian War, as well as important to future westward expansion. Joseph Ridgway Grundy -- Bucks -- Grundy was a major player in state and national Republican politics in the first half of the 20th century. He supported the 1930 Smoot-Hawley Tariff and pro-business conservatism; referred to then as "Grundyism." Graceanna Lewis -- Chester -- Lewis dedicated her life to the study of natural science, botany and zoology. She won a bronze medal at the World's Columbian Exposition for her paintings of flora and fauna. She was actively involved in abolitionist, suffrage, and temperance movements. Stevedore Training Site -- Dauphin -- Located at Ft. Indiantown Gap, troops were trained on dry land ships in efficient loading and unloading techniques. Many of the units were African American and their training in rapid mobilization and deployment played a crucial role in victory in Europe. Lazaretto Quarantine Station -- Delaware -- It is believed to be the last remaining quarantine station in the United States. For much of the 19th century, it was where many Europeans were first introduced to the United States. Rev. Anna Howard Shaw -- Delaware -- Shaw headed the Women's Committee of the Council of National Defense during World War I. Her work earned her a Distinguished Service Medal. She also was involved in the national temperance and women's suffrage movements. Joshua Merrill -- Erie -- A renowned oil chemist, Merrill is responsible for scientific breakthroughs in oil production techniques that have had worldwide significance. The results of his work fueled the industrial revolution. PA Game Commission Genesis -- Erie -- In 1890 in Corry, PA, a meeting of businessmen and conservationists, concerned about waning wildlife and game populations, led to the establishment of the Pennsylvania Game Commission five years later. James Finley -- Fayette -- Finley's patent for a chain suspension bridge became widely used. His design system was studied throughout the nation and abroad. He is considered the "Father of the Modern Suspension Bridge." John Hayden -- Fayette -- Hayden was among the first to forge iron in western Pennsylvania, and was instrumental in the formation of two early furnaces. He was also the first person to transport commercial goods by wagon over the Allegheny Mountains. Absalom (Albert) Hazlett -- Fayette -- He was a member of John Brown's gang, and participated in the raid at Harper's Ferry. He was arrested in an attempt to escape and hanged for his involvement. Linton Park -- Indiana -- An 18th century primitive artist, Park's realistic paintings of rural and industrial life contributed to the understanding of frontier Pennsylvania. His depictions of flax-making and lumbering are particularly significant. Lewis Earle Sandt -- Jefferson -- An early aviation pioneer, Sandt was taught to fly by Wright Brothers' competitor Glenn Curtiss. He was the first American to fly an international flight across Lake Erie to Canada. Coal Miners Strike of 1877 -- Lackawanna -- Workers during the Great Railroad Strike of 1877 organized a protest which brought attention to their grievances and contributed to the labor movement in PA. Rocky Glen Park -- Lackawanna -- Rocky Glenn was an amusement park and recreational haven that mainly served coal miners, textile and industrial workers and their families. Special events were held to reflect the ethnic diversity of the region. Holley Motor Company -- McKean -- Automotive pioneers George and Earl Holley produced the Holley carburetor which revolutionized gasoline engine development. In the second half of the 20th century, the company's products became synonymous with high performance engines. William Robinson -- McKean -- This inventor developed the closed-form railroad track circuit. Recognized as a milestone in the worldwide development of railway signaling technology, its basic form and function has remained unchanged since 1872. Beth Sholom Synagogue -- Montgomery -- A National Historic Landmark designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, it is the only synagogue Wright designed and the last property completed before his death. It was conceived as a modern Mt. Sinai of concrete, steel, aluminum and glass. William Trego -- Montgomery -- Trained by his artist father, despite a disability that paralyzed his hands, Trego became a prominent artist of historical and military paintings. Many of his works are in the collections of important national museums. Betsy Ross -- Philadelphia -- The story that Betsy Ross created the first American flag is considered folklore by many historians. Her documented contributions to the war effort as a woman and a Quaker are very significant. Caroline Earle White -- Philadelphia -- One of three seminal figures and the only woman of the American Humane Movement of the 19th century, she was a founder of the Pennsylvania Society for the Prevention Cruelty to Animals (SPCA), sole founder of the American Anti-Vivisection Society and a proponent of legislation against cruelty during animal slaughter. First Public Sector Strike -- Philadelphia -- In 1938, members of AFSCME Local 427 conducted the first public sector strike in the state and the first against a major city government. It resulted in a collective bargaining agreement, blocking layoffs and halting pay cuts. Freedom Now Rally -- Philadelphia -- This was an important civil rights rally in which Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., in the midst of many of his civil rights successes and at the height of his notoriety, visited several sites in Philadelphia to encourage local movements and assist with fund-raising efforts. German Society of Pennsylvania -- Philadelphia -- Founded in 1764, it is the oldest and most prominent German organization in the United States. Providing information on German culture, language and history, it houses the nation's largest German library. Germantown Meetinghouse -- Philadelphia -- The first meetinghouse of the Church of the Brethren in the United States, built in 1770 as a worship space for a congregation formed in 1723, it has been in continuous use since. Hershey's First Candy Store -- Philadelphia -- The chocolate giant's first business venture, his difficulties here led him to alter his methods. He ultimately found success with caramel in Lancaster and chocolate in Hershey. Jane Johnson -- Philadelphia -- Johnson's work became one of the most important stories of the Underground Railroad. She was a determined slave whose skillful use of Underground Railroad apparatus defended freedom against the federal government and Southern slavery. Joseph and Amy Cassey -- Philadelphia -- These African American abolitionists associated with prominent abolitionists, such as William Lloyd Garrison and James Forten. Joseph Cassey was a distributor for Garrison's newspaper, The Liberator. They also supported education and women's rights and were members of several benevolent organizations. Mayor Richardson Dilworth -- Philadelphia -- A leader in political reform, he championed historic preservation and urban renewal plans for inner-city Philadelphia neighborhoods, most notably Society Hill. Dilworth's home there exemplifies his commitment to urban renewal, moving into it while the neighborhood was still in transition. Moyamensing Prison -- Philadelphia -- Built on the principle of isolated confinement, including separate facilities for African Americans and women, Moyamensing replaced the Walnut Street Prison in 1835. It was part of a national upsurge of institution building in the second quarter of the 19th century. Last hanging in the state was here in 1916. Philadelphia Sketch Club -- Philadelphia -- Founded in 1860, it is the oldest artists' club in the nation. Many prominent artists, including Thomas Eakins and N. C. Wyeth, have been members over the years. The club has exposed the public to many important artists and their works through its sponsored exhibitions. Schuylkill Navy of Philadelphia -- Philadelphia -- It is the oldest amateur athletic governing body in the United States. It is an international venue for the sport of rowing, and often considered the course of the nation. Boathouse row is a prominent Philadelphia icon. John B. Kelly, Commodore of the Schuylkill Navy, was a 3-time Olympic champion. Sister Rosetta Tharpe -- Philadelphia -- An important figure in the history of gospel music, she popularized gospel music into the main stream and gave the style a wide audience. She collaborated with and influenced numerous famous musicians and was inducted into The Gospel Music and Blues Halls of Fame. Trial of Frederick Eberle -- Philadelphia -- In 1816, the commonwealth brought a case against anti-English Germans in Philadelphia for threats of violence and murder against English-speaking German immigrants. The case addresses the larger and timely issues of anti-immigrant sentiments and of immigrant assimilation and its impact. Mother Theresa Maxis Duchemin -- Susquehanna -- The first U.S.-born African American nun, she was a charter member of the Oblate Sisters of Providence, the nation's first congregation of African American sisters; and founder of the Immaculate Heart of Mary Sisters, now established throughout the United States and Latin America. Col. Francis "Gabby" Gabreski -- Venango -- The top scoring air fighter ace in World War II and the Korean War, he was the recipient of many decorations from the U.S. Air Force, in addition to numerous international honors and medals. Samuel C. T. Dodd -- Venango -- He was a prominent lawyer for Standard Oil, and one of the first great corporation lawyers. Author of the Standard Oil Trust Agreement, it defended corporations as indispensable to the business world. He was a strong opponent of the Sherman Anti-trust Act. Delvin Miller -- Washington -- A giant in the field of harness racing, he won thousands of races before becoming a successful breeder and trainer. His career spanned eight decades. He was an active promoter of improved race safety and technology. Invasion of Jefferson -- York -- Just before the Battle of Gettysburg, the town of Jefferson was forced to supply both Union and Confederate troops with supplies, horses, and cattle a they passed through the town, emphasizing the impact of the Gettysburg Campaign on the civilian population. CONTACT: Kirk Wilson (717)783-9882
SOURCE Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission
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