New Historical Markers Recognize Pittsburgh Civil War Fort and Renowned Candy Maker's First Store in Philadelphia

PHMC Approves 43 New State Historical Markers

Mar 26, 2008, 01:00 ET from Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission

    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
     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 The Pennsylvania Historical and Museum
 Commission is the official history agency of the Commonwealth of
     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
     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
     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
     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
     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
     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
     CONTACT: Kirk Wilson

SOURCE Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission