Like several of today’s suburbs outside of Philadelphia, Wallace Township (Chester County) used to be home to many farmsteads in the 18th and early 19th centuries. However, by the late 19th century, the railroad had made its way to these rural communities, bringing with it an influx of Philadelphians eager to establish summer residences away from the city. Among these Philadelphians were the Howsons.
The area now known as Uwchlan Township, Chester County, Pennsylvania was once occupied by the Leni-Lenape (Delaware) and Iroquoian-speaking Susquehanuck peoples, and many of the footpaths they created are still in use today as roads that crisscross through the Township. Welsh Quakers were the main European group to settle in Uwchlan, requesting their own meeting in 1712.
The Tredyffrin Easttown Historical Society has a variety of materials documenting the long and rich history of these two Main Line townships and their residents. The collections include subject files, maps, numerous photographs, family albums, manuscripts and other items helpful for research. If you’re like me, you might think that the name Tredyffrin looks like it’s from another language- and you would be right! The neighboring townships of Tredyffrin and Easttown were originally settled in the 1680s as part of the area known as the “Welsh Tract.”
This past fall I worked as an archives intern for the Hidden Collections Initiative for Pennsylvania Small Archival Repositories (HCI-PSAR). It was a great experience, and it’s not hard to understand why. I was exposed to both large repository and small repository environments, I was able to work with a variety of collections and produce multiple finding aids, and I met a lot of great people. For all of these reasons and more, this internship was not only fun, but also rewarding.
Raise your hand if you knew that Delaware County is home to eastern Pennsylvania’s own version of Colonial Williamsburg! Nestled on 112 acres of Ridley Creek State Park in Edgmont, PA is the beautiful Colonial Pennsylvania Plantation. In the early 1970s, a local historical society established the beginnings of what would become Colonial Pennsylvania Plantation, formerly known as Bishop’s Mill Historical Institute, with the goal of showing visitors what life was like for an everyday person living and working at a farm or mill in the colonial period.