Penn Manor High School social studies teacher and football coach Todd Mealy has written a book about the significant community leaders, actors, politicians and athletes who hailed from Harrisburg. "Legendary Locals of Harrisburg" celebrates people who were born or lived in the city. It includes pioneering African-American educator William Howard Day; John Harris, the city's founder; former governor and Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge; and actress Nancy Kulp of "Beverly Hillbillies" fame.
The book, released Sept. 22, is the third written by Mealy while teaching and coaching at Penn Manor. The others are "Biography of an Antislavery City: Antislavery Advocates, Abolitionists, and Underground Railroad Operatives in Harrisburg, PA" and "Aliened American: A Biography of William Howard Day, 1825-1900."
Mealy also has had articles published in American Heritage and Pennsylvania Heritage magazines and has written the text for two Dauphin County historical markers. He was approached to write "Legendary Locals" in 2013 based on his earlier writings about Harrisburg, Mealy's native city. He had less than a year to research and write the book and secure the nearly 200 photographs it contains - some of which he took himself.