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!
On Dec. 13, 1799, George Washington set out on his Mount Vernon estate to mark for felling a copse of (non-cherry) trees. The stroll through his gardens and farm would be the retired president's last. By the end of the following day, Washington was dead.
Tobias Lear, Washington's personal secretary, stood at the pained 67-year-old's bedside throughout. Lear's account offers an intimate look into Washington's final moments, and the stoicism with which the "American Cincinnatus" met death. Emphasis is Lear's own.
The following article was written by HSP volunteer Randi Kamine and is being posted on her behalf. Many thanks to Archival Processor Megan Evans for helping prepare these articles for publication. To read the first part of this article, please click here or on the article's title in the right sidebar.
With this month's sesquicentennial of the 13th Amendment's ratification, consider the story of the first abolition organization in the Western Hemisphere: the Pennsylvania Abolition Society, which is still in existence after 240 years.
The society was once a world-leading abolitionist organization, though it was eclipsed by a more radical brand of abolitionism in the years leading to the Civil War evinced by William Lloyd Garrison, Frederick Douglass, and others.
The following article was written by HSP volunteer Randi Kamine and is being posted on her behalf. Part two of the article will be posted next Wednesday. Many thanks to Archival Processor Megan Evans for helping prepare these articles for publication.
Print is dead, or so drone digital media's arrivistes. This may come as a shock to Philadelphia's Print Center as it celebrates its 100th anniversary this year, making it one of the oldest organizations dedicated to graphic arts in the United States.
Where’s Washington? Judging by the number of search results when using the terms “George Washington” in HSP’s online catalog, Discover, the answer is: Everywhere!
Hello, everyone! We've reached the penultimate post of transcriptions from the George F. Parry Civil War diaries (George F. Parry family volumes, Collection 3694). If you're just joining us, in 2012 HSP acquired the diaries of Bucks County resident and Civil War veterinary surgeon George F. Parry. In that collection are three diaries he kept during the Civil War dating from 1863 to 1865, when he served with the 7th Pennsylvania Cavalry.
Many Philadelphia boosters proudly boast of its reputation as a rough-and-tumble city. Soften those edges with a look at its history of silk production.
The culture of silkworms (Bombyx mori) began in China nearly five millennia ago with the discovery that caterpillars' cocoons could be unwound to lustrous effect. Its roots in the New World were established with the first permanent English settlement, Jamestown.
Every type of American prime mover—the power to do work—has been harvested and used in Pennsylvania and, in the process of its use and management, has defined entire regions of the state. Exciting new scholarship is teaching us much about this important history while also pointing us to promising areas for future inquiry.