Fondly, Pennsylvania

Fondly, Pennsylvania is a joint blog of HSP's archives, conservation, and digitization departments.  Here you will find posts on our latest projects and newest discoveries, as well as how we care for, describe, and preserve our collections.  Whether you are doing research or just curious to know more about the behind-the-scenes work that goes on at HSP, please read, explore, and join the conversation!

Author: Matthew Lyons

This past Friday I gave a presentation in Jersey City about HSP’s Adopt-a-Collection program, which allows people to donate money earmarked for processing and conserving a specific collection. My talk was part of a panel on “creative funding” for archives, at the fall meeting of the Mid-Atlantic Regional Archives Conference (MARAC). There were three of us on the panel.

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Author: Dana Lamparello


Followers of the Historical Society of Pennsylvania’s Question of the Week may already be familiar with Albert J. Edmunds, HSP’s former cataloger and (alleged) resident ghost. From 1891 to 1936, Albert was responsible for describing and subject cataloging HSP’s diverse set of collection material, creating many of the handwritten and, later, typed catalog cards that are still used to access our collections today—and perhaps still typed today by Albert's spirit, as goes the local folklore.

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Author: Leah Mackin

Memoirs of HSP, before

Topics: 19th century
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Author: Cathleen Miller

This week, I am working on finishing up the John Rutter Brooke Papers, the first collection I am processing as part of the Digital Center for Americana.

J.R. Brooke

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Author: Cary Hutto

". . .chiefly North American, and drawn from life; designed to preserve the characteristics features, personally, mentally, or officially [of] remarkable persons, and the endeared memory of private friends or public benefactors with professional notices &c. Philadelphia, 1790, 91, & 92." (p. 396)

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Author: Timothy Horning

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.

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Author: Matthew Lyons

Anyone who says that people don’t care about history should have been at HSP last Wednesday night (October 14). Over 150 people attended an evening program to celebrate the successful completion of our two-year Chew Family Papers Project. The discussion at this event was lively and at times contentious, centering on how HSP has dealt with the Chew family’s involvement in slavery.

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Author: Willhem Echevarria

If you go to the section entitled About Us at our website, you’ll see that the Historical Society of Pennsylvania has over 19 million manuscripts and graphic items. HSP was founded in 1824 and as you can imagine, we have been collecting and acquiring materials on a continued basis since.

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Author: Ashley Harper


This week I spent some time working on the Joshua Humphreys papers (Collection 306). Born in Haverford, Pa. in 1751, Humphreys would go on to be the nation’s foremost naval architect in the post-Revolutionary era.

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Author: Cary Hutto

The Chew family?  Yep, pretty sure we have their records.

The Hopkinson family?  Yeah, we’ve got them too.

The Logan family?  Yes, them too, and related families.

The Cadwalader family?  We’ve got boxes and boxes…and more boxes!

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