Timothy Horning

Historical Society of Pennsylvania

This Author's Posts

First the belated answer to the “Guess the Story” post.


While continuing to work on the Allen collection I came across a curious set of cards. The cards were numbered in a series and each series seemed to tell some kind of moral story. Since the text is in German we had a lot of fun trying to guess what the story was just based on the illustrations. Tara O'Brien, our Director of Preservation and Conservation Services and resident German speaker/expert clued us in as to what these were and the stories they were telling, but we thought it would be fun to share these with our readers and see what you could come up with.

Comments: 2

While working with the Allen Family Papers I came across some travel journals with ephemera from the trips (mostly postcards) laid in. The journals span 1909 to 1934 and cover the family’s trips to Europe (with one exception of a trip to California via the Panama Canal).


Last week I began to create a finding aid for the Allen Family Papers. From what I can tell so far, the majority of the collection seems to be Alfred Reginald Allen Sr.’s (1876-1918) correspondences with his father, son, wife, and other family members. Leslie Hunt, a former archivist at HSP, had painstakingly inventoried some of this collection back in 2001.

Comments: 2

First I should start by correcting myself a bit. In my last blog I said that the Friends of Benjamin Franklin House, U.S. objected to the idea put forth by the Friends of Benjamin Franklin House, U.K. to use theatrical presentations to tell the story and have a science lab on the upper floors of the house. To finance the U.K. groups plan would require that entrance fees be steep. The U.S. group thought that the cost would deter visitors. Well this seemed to be precisely the U.K. group’s intention.

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My first task as an HSP Archives Intern was to create a finding aid for the business files of an organization called The Friends of Benjamin Franklin House, U.S. From these files a narrative unfolds that shows the difficulty of restoring and opening an historic house museum. Not only is the physical restoration a painstaking process, but the process can be hampered when those undertaking the restoration cannot agree. Therefore, the Benjamin Franklin House also serves to highlight the interesting question of what exactly we are to do with the few historical residences still standing.