Insights: News and other updates from Hands on Heritage.

Ask a Curator Day

We're all curious about what goes on behind closed doors, and that's true for museums and galleries and historical societies, as well as private residences. Spencer Baird My favorite closed doors are at the National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C. Also the Smithsonian's Natural History Museum. I pause and stare at [...]

By |2019-04-10T11:21:12-05:00September 9th, 2015|Insights|

Crash Site Remains Worst Airline Disaster in Lycoming County History

Allegheny Airlines Flight 371 crash site One man's quest to memorialize the victims of the worst airline disaster in Lycoming County history, the crash of Allegheny Airlines Flight 371 on Bald Eagle Mountain, is coming to an end. The crash site has received designation from the Commonwealth as an official archaeological site. In [...]

By |2018-07-14T13:39:00-05:00December 2nd, 2014|Archaeology, Insights|

The Heritage Trail

A stroll along the James P. Bressler Heritage Trail on Canfield Island is invigorating and educational. It's also tranquil, this quiet spot along the Susquehanna River's West Branch. The trail is part of Loyalsock Township's Riverfront Park and is dedicated to James P. Bressler. A scholar and educator beloved in his community, Bressler carved a [...]

By |2019-09-05T12:56:26-05:00February 24th, 2012|History, Insights, Robin Van Auken|

School Days

School Days: 75th Anniversary Oral History Project Working with Muncy Historical Society and the students (past and present) of Muncy Jr/Sr High School, historian Robin Van Auken created a 30-minute DVD oral history project that features 35 alumni and current student interviews. Historical Society volunteers and Muncy students collaborated on this important [...]

By |2018-08-04T19:05:23-05:00August 1st, 2011|Hands-on Heritage, History, Insights, Robin Van Auken|

Pennsylvania’s Forests

Pennsylvania Route 554 Pennsylvania’s forests reflect a history of choices — from peaceful coexistence between humans and the forests to the massive harvesting of the forests in the late 1800s. Pennsylvania’s borders encompass 17 million acres of forestland, almost 4 million acres of which are publicly owned. However, more than 12 million acres [...]

By |2016-11-29T12:24:50-05:00July 31st, 2011|Hands-on Heritage, History, Insights, Robin Van Auken|

Lumber Heritage

The Lumber Heritage Region holds a key to the rich heritage of Pennsylvania’s forests–from the struggles of the pioneers to the cut-and-run practices of the early lumber industry to the conservation efforts that led to the managed forests of today. Woodhicks Pennsylvania’s forests reflect a history of choices — from peaceful coexistence between [...]

By |2019-09-05T12:51:46-05:00July 31st, 2011|History, Insights|

Shawn Gardner

Shawn Gardner Artisan Shawn Gardner, of Fair Chase Designs, presents on prehistoric technology and Native American art. This is presentation is suitable for people of all ages, including families and school-aged children. Gardner lives in Montoursville, often presents programs to people who visit his teepee on school field trips. He also offers seminars [...]

Joy McCracken

Joy McCracken Joy McCracken is a spinning and weaving expert. McCracken demonstrates the craft of creating fabric from animal hair to students. One of her specialties is drop spindle spinning, an early technique for making yarn without a spinning wheel. When she heard how the women of Bolivia used drop spindles as they [...]

By |2018-07-15T15:17:52-05:00June 28th, 2011|Hands-on Heritage, History, Insights, Robin Van Auken|

Muncy Historical Society

  Muncy Historical Society   Muncy Historical Society and Museum of History, a not-for-profit, all volunteer organization founded in 1936, focuses on preservation and conservation of the rich history and heritage of Muncy and surrounding communities – its people, businesses, education, arts, traditions and folklore – by sponsoring educational programs and activities, through [...]

Van Wagner

Since he was a child, Van Wagner has been singing, strumming, rambling, and picking his way through the hills of Pennsylvania. With more than 100 original songs under his belt, and co-production of nine albums, Van has developed a unique style of musical expression. He has performed several times in Europe as well as all [...]

By |2018-07-15T15:07:34-05:00April 8th, 2011|Hands-on Heritage, Insights, Robin Van Auken|

Widow Smith’s Walk

While Michael Ross was settling the City of Williamsport, selling parcels of land to frontier families and immigrants, another enterprising resident of the West Branch Valley was being hoodwinked from her home and business. Widow Smith's Walk Catherine Smith, an old woman "of great business tact and energy," had erected gristmills and sawmills [...]

By |2018-08-05T18:29:04-05:00March 27th, 2011|History, Insights, News of Yesteryear, Robin Van Auken|

A Heroic Duo

Rachel Silverthorn warns the settlers (WPA mural) While Gen. George Washington's Continental Army fought the British, settlers along the Susquehanna River also considered themselves at war with the displaced Indians. Conflicts escalated daily. Rumors of a planned massacre of settlers were taken seriously. In August 1778, the Big Runaway began along the [...]

By |2018-08-05T18:24:41-05:00March 27th, 2011|History, Insights, News of Yesteryear, Robin Van Auken|

Indians of Susquehanna

Indians of Susquehanna Prehistoric Indians skillfully managed the natural bounty of the Susquehanna River region by living in accordance with the seasons. They hunted, fished, gathered nuts, berries and other wild foods, and they cultivated corn, beans and squash. According to archaeologists, Indians were successful in populating the New World for more [...]

Lycoming County: Williamsport Firsts

Scott Barn in The Narrows, Lycoming County Williamsport, Pennsylvania is a small metropolis with a dramatic history. Famous throughout the world for its impressive forest products, it once boasted more millionaires per capita than any American city. A hale and hearty pioneer village on the West Branch of the Susquehanna River, early [...]

By |2018-08-05T18:16:14-05:00March 27th, 2011|History, Insights, News of Yesteryear, Robin Van Auken|