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Museum Slates Lunch "Time" Program March 21, 2018

Individuals are invited to pack a lunch and join the National Watch and Clock Museum, 514 Poplar St., Columbia, for its Lunch "Time" presentation on Wednesday, April 11, from noon to 1 p.m.

Museum director Noel Poirier will discuss the ancient Antikythera Mechanism, the theories for its use, and what it tells about ancient timekeeping capabilities. Those attending will be able to examine the museum's model based on drawings made by Dr. Derek de Solla Price during his study of bronze fragments in the early 1970s.

The purpose of Lunch "Time," a complimentary educational program, is to offer a time of casual conversation and understanding of timekeeping, including developments beginning during ancient timekeeping. Attendees can discover objects from the museum collection or learn about various aspects of the history of time and timekeeping.

The public is welcome to attend Lunch "Time" programs, which are held every other month. The next program is scheduled for Wednesday, June 13.

For more information about the museum, readers may call 717-684-8261 or visit


Rock Ford Plans Children's Tea Event March 20, 2018

Rock Ford Plantation, 881 Rockford Road, Lancaster, will host its new Tea With Kitty Hand event on Sunday, April 29, from 2 to 4 p.m. The event is recommended for children ages 5 to 12 and their family members.

Attendees will experience a taste of an 18th-century tea party with Katherine "Kitty" Hand, wife of Gen. Edward Hand. Activities will include learning about fans, playing a memory game, finding objects in the mansion, and exploring the aromas of teas. A re-enactor portraying Mrs. Hand will serve tea and cookies to the guests.

The event will be held rain or shine on the Rock Ford porch and inside the mansion and the barn. In the event of rain, guests are asked to bring umbrellas, as they must walk from the barn to the house.

Reservations are required by Friday, April 20, and there is a fee per person. For more information, readers may visit or call 717-392-7223.


Easter Egg Scavenger Hunt March 15, 2018

An Easter Egg Scavenger Hunt will be held at the AACA Museum, 161 Museum Drive, Hershey. Two hunts will be held from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. on Saturdays, March 24 and 31.

Guests will hunt to find a variety of "egg spots" within the main and lower levels of the museum. Treats will be given to each child age 12 and under at these treat locations. Children should bring a basket. The Easter Bunny will also be on-site. Refreshments, including hot dogs, popcorn, and pink lemonade, will be provided while supplies last.

Admission will be free for children up to age 12 with a paid regular admission. Children must be accompanied by at least one adult. Tickets must be purchased at the door to receive the exclusive ticket rate.

For more details, readers may visit or call 717-566-7100.

0 Sets Schedule March 14, 2018, 230 N. President Ave., Lancaster, has posted several upcoming events. Unless otherwise noted, events will take place at When tickets are necessary, they may be obtained at

"The Life and Work of C. Emlen Urban: 1880-1939" will be presented on Thursday, March 15. A speaker's reception will begin at 4 p.m., followed by the presentation at 4:30 p.m. The event is free and open to the public.

Architect and newspaper columnist Gregory J. Scott, an expert on Urban's work, will conduct a discussion of Urban's life and legacy. A local architect, Urban designed many building in Lancaster city, including the Watt and Shand building, Southern Market, schools, government buildings, churches, mansions, and duplex houses. Instead of using a single style, he chose to use mixed styles. president and CEO Tom Ryan will give a pre-curtain talk at the Fulton Theatre, 12 N. Prince St., Lancaster, on a Thursday, March 15. Ryan will speak at a 6:30 p.m. reception on the second-floor mezzanine prior to the Fulton's production of "Guys and Dolls."

A Curator's Tour with the theme "Lancaster's Architectural Records, 1885-1926" will be offered on Thursday, March 29, at 3:30 p.m. Heather Tennies, director of archival services, will outline the importance of the Evans family of architects, Melvern R. Evans Sr., and its clients. She will also show some of the Evans' plans of building projects in Lancaster, corresponding business records, and photographs from the collection of Advance tickets are required.

Go At Your Own Pace Saturday will take place at President James Buchanan's Wheatland on Saturday, March 31. Guides will be stationed throughout the presidential mansion as visitors tour at their own pace. Tour entries will be available every 15 minutes from 1 to 3 p.m. The ticket price also includes admission to the museum galleries at Advance tickets are recommended.


Historic Site Markers Planned March 14, 2018

Beginning in May, the African American walking tours highlighting sites associated with African American heritage in the city of Lancaster will feature four new historical markers installed in public areas describing the sites' association with the Underground Railroad. and the African American Historical Society of South Central Pennsylvania, in partnership with five other local groups and individuals, will receive a $4,675 grant from the U.S Department of the Interior to be matched by the local partners.

The total funding of $9,500 will cover the costs of the research, design, fabrication, and installation of two outdoor markers and two interior graphic display panels.

The sites in the city of Lancaster include the Thaddeus Stevens and Lydia Hamilton Smith Historic Site, part of the Lancaster County Convention Center facility. is responsible for this historical marker, which will be installed inside the storefront windows of the Kleiss Tavern, corner of South Queen and East Vine streets, a part of the Stevens and Smith Historic Site. These panels will explain the events that occurred in 1848 that documented the property as a safe house for the Underground Railroad during the time Stevens and Smith lived there.

The second site is the former site of the Philadelphia and Columbia Railroad Station, located within the entrance to the parking garage at the corner of North Queen and East Chestnut streets. Some privately owned freight cars that ran on this train line and stopped at this station were outfitted with false walls and used to secretly transport formerly enslaved people to Philadelphia. The South Central Transit Authority owns and manages this garage and is one of the local partners and funders of this project. The other funder is Frederick Waller of Lancaster, through the African American Historical Society.

The third site is the Thaddeus Stevens grave at Shreiner-Concord Cemetery, North Mulberry and West Chestnut streets. The marker is being supported by the Shreiner-Concord Cemetery, state Rep. Mike Sturla, the African American Historical Society, and This marker will explain why Stevens chose to be buried at this public cemetery. It will also share information about Stevens' role in the work of the Underground Railroad.

The fourth site is the Fulton Opera House, which is the site of Old Lancaster County Jail. A sidewalk-mounted marker is under consideration opposite the Fulton Theatre at the corner of Prince and West King streets. This marker is being funded by the Junior League of Lancaster and will tell the story of Sheriff David "Dare Devil Dave" Miller, who, in 1835, secretly released two African American women from the jail as plans were being made to return them to slavery in the South. The jail was demolished in 1852, and Fulton Hall was built on its foundations, with a portion of the original wall still visible along Water Street.

These outdoor markers and interior display panels will be the first of a larger effort to install up to as many as 25 similar displays throughout the city of Lancaster. Sites, and the historical people and events associated with them, have been tentatively identified. Future installations will depend on forming partnerships with property owners and securing funding from donations, community sponsors, and other sources, such as the current federal grant program.


Historical Society To Display Real Estate Deed March 14, 2018

The first real estate deed recorded in the original Chester County dates back 330 years to March 10, 1688. The deed is for a Quaker meetinghouse now located in the city of Chester in Delaware County.

According to Chester County Recorder of Deeds Rick Loughery, Chester County was one of the first three counties in Pennsylvania and originally covered a large area that is now Chester County and Delaware County.

The grantor listed on the deed was Urin Keen, and the grantees were trustees of the Society of Friends. As part of the 330th anniversary recognition, the deed will be on display through the end of March at the Chester County Historical Society, 225 N. High St., West Chester.

According to Chester County's Department of Archives and Records Services, the earliest deed transaction for land in the current Chester County boundary was recorded on July 2, 1688, for a grant from William Penn to James Dicks for 250 acres of land in Birmingham.

Chester County's historic deeds are part of the Chester County Archives, created in 1982 to preserve and make available Chester County historic records. The Chester County Archives holds more than 2,940 volumes and 1,823 cubic feet of original public records.

Chester County's Recorder of Deeds Office holds records of real estate property, including deeds and mortgages, that may be researched by interested parties including the public. The office also records military discharges, commissions, and other official documents.


Program Will Focus On Pollinator Gardens February 28, 2018

The Friends of Hopewell Furnace will host "Design Your Pollinator Garden" on Sunday, March 11, at 2 p.m. in the Conference Room at Hopewell Furnace, 2 Mark Bird Lane, Elverson.

Penn State Master Gardener Margaret Yevics of Reading will be the presenter. A retired civil engineer, Yevics serves on the Penn State Master Gardener hotline as an information resource for the people of Pennsylvania. She volunteers her time to assist gardeners at several locations in the greater Reading area, including the Reading Arboretum and Hopewell Furnace. Additionally, Yevics is a member of the Reading Shade Tree Commission and is currently working on a study of bees for Penn State.

Hopewell Furnace's landscape includes a variety of gardens that are tended by staff and volunteers. In 2013, the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society (PHS) recognized the excellence of the gardens at Hopewell Furnace, including Hopewell's pollinator garden, with the PHS Community Greening Award.

Admission to the pollinator garden event is free.

While at Hopewell Furnace National Historic Site, visitors may go into the village, tour the buildings, see Hopewell's water wheel and learn about iron making and why Hopewell Furnace is important to U.S. history. The site is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Wednesdays through Sundays. For more information, readers may visit


Student Artwork Exhibits Slated February 28, 2018

The Scholastic Art Awards Exhibition and the Lancaster County Young Artists Awards Exhibition began on March 3 and will continue through Thursday, March 29. The exhibitions are being held at the Demuth Museum, 120 E. King St., Lancaster, and the Lancaster Museum of Art, 135 N. Lime St., Lancaster, respectively.

The exhibitions are free and open to the public. For more details, readers may call 717-299-9940 or visit


Museum Plans Reading Event February 28, 2018

The Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania, 300 Gap Road, Strasburg, will host its Reading On The Rails event on Saturday, March 10. Special guests will share stories about trains, railroads and other amazing people, places and things during story times at 9:30 a.m., 10:15 a.m., 11 a.m., 11:45 a.m., 1:15 p.m., 2 p.m., 2:45 p.m. and 3:15 p.m. The story times will be held among the historic trains in the museum's climate-controlled Rolling Stock Hall.

Children will receive a suitcase and use it to travel from story to story throughout the day. They may receive a sticker after each story and create their own suitcase design with stickers, crayons, glitter and other trimmings. A small gift to put inside their suitcase will be offered, while supplies last.

Special guest readers will include Margaret Miller, judge, Lancaster County Court of Common Pleas; Christine Ferreira, meteorologist; J. J. Landis, children's librarian, Strasburg-Heisler Library; Keith Greiner, legislator, Pennsylvania State House of Representatives; Lori Roscoe, co-author of "50 American Heroes Every Kid Should Meet"; Tracee Groff, editor/director of Schiffer Kids, Schiffer Publishing; James Spencer, trooper, Pennsylvania State Police; and Lori Yeager, first grade teacher, Carter and MacRae Elementary School.

The event will also feature a visit from Catcher, the Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania's mascot, and various teams from Keystone Pet Enhanced Therapy Services (KPETS). KPETS coordinates a network of registered teams that provide therapeutic services and the healing benefits of the human and animal connection to individuals in health-related facilities, schools, libraries and special needs programs.

For more information, readers may visit or call 717-687-8628.


Museum Receives Recognition, Donation February 27, 2018


Presentation Will Focus On Donating Objects February 27, 2018

The National Watch and Clock Museum, 514 Poplar St., Columbia, will host a TIMEtalks presentation from 11 a.m. to noon on Saturday, March 17, in the museum theater. Museum director Noel Poirier will outline the procedures, benefits, pitfalls, and concerns a museum donor should be aware of when considering a donation. Poirier has been the museum's director for more than 10 years and is an accreditation and peer reviewer for the American Alliance of Museums.

TIMEtalks is a complimentary educational program that will continue every other month.

For more information about the National Watch and Clock Museum, readers may call 717-684-8261 or visit


Cloister Plans Charter Day Activities February 27, 2018

Historic Ephrata Cloister, 632 W. Main St., Ephrata, invites members of the public to visit on Charter Day, Sunday, March 11, from noon to 5 p.m. Admission will be free on Cloister Day, which celebrates the founding of Pennsylvania.

Volunteers will welcome visitors to explore the museum's nine original buildings and discover the stories of the accomplishments and challenges faced by the community's original residents. The Ephrata Cloister Chorus will offer performances of the community's original music beginning at 2, 3 and 4 p.m. in the Saal (Meetinghouse), built in 1741. Seating is limited. Visitors may browse the museum store, which will be stocked with locally made, handcrafted items and books.

The celibate community of men and women who established Historic Ephrata Cloister in 1732 became known for their artwork and self-composed hymns and for the community's architecture, which survives. During the Revolutionary War, the community served as a military hospital for wounded American soldiers. Since 1941 the site has been preserved by the state of Pennsylvania as a testament to William Penn's policy of religious toleration.

Ephrata Cloister is administered by the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum commission with support from the Ephrata Cloister Associates.


NYC Auto Show Trip Scheduled February 23, 2018

The AACA Museum Inc., 161 Museum Drive, Hershey, will host a trip to the New York International Auto Show on Sunday, April 8. Registration is required before Monday, March 5, and seating is limited.

Ushering in the latest automotive trends, the 2018 New York International Auto Show will showcase an incredible collection of cutting-edge design and extraordinary innovation. More than four floors of displays from the world's automakers will feature the newest vehicles and latest futuristic concept cars. Nearly 1,000 cars and trucks will be on display at North America's first and largest-attended auto show dating back to 1900.

The cost for the one-day bus trip to New York City includes round-trip luxury motor coach transportation departing at 7:30 a.m. from the AACA Museum, along with a pickup stop in King of Prussia at 9:30 a.m.; admission to the New York International Auto Show; and snacks during the trip. Gratuities, taxes, and fees are included.

Seats will be filled on a first-come, first-served basis. For details and registration, readers may contact Toni Rothman at 610-361-7882, 610-246-3525, or


New Exhibit Announced February 22, 2018

The AACA Museum, 161 Museum Drive, Hershey, will display a 1920 Anderson Six Convertible Roadster in the "Historic Vehicle Associate" (HVA) exhibit in the museum lobby. This will be the second car on display for this exhibit and will be on view through early June.

The 1920 Anderson Six Convertible Roadster is designed to quickly convert from a sleek roadster to a five-passenger touring car. This is similar to the commonplace hide-away rumble seats that are found in later roadster and coupe designs.

The 1920 Anderson Convertible is one of seven known survivors of South Carolina's first automobile company, the Anderson Company, which operated between 1916 and 1925. This car is the only known surviving example of one of the marque's most innovative body types. This 1920 Anderson is the 13th vehicle added to the HVA's National Historic Vehicle Register.

There is an admission fee, with discounts for seniors age 61 and older and juniors ages 4 to 12. Children under age 4 and AACA members will be admitted for free. For further details, readers may call 717-566-7100 or visit


Museum Plans Presentation February 15, 2018

The National Civil War Museum (NCWM) will present "The Wounded Soon Began To Pour In...: The George Spangler Farm and the Union 11th Corps Hospital at Gettysburg" on Saturday, Feb. 24, from 1 to 2 p.m.

Wayne Motts, NCWM CEO and a licensed battlefield guide at Gettysburg National Military Park, will speak about Gettysburg's best preserved and documented field hospital. His presentation will include unpublished, rare, and seldom seen material associated with the farm and its history.

The presentation is the second of 12 presentations in the 2018 Lessons in History Speaker Series, held in the education gallery on the first floor. The series is free and open to the public. Regular museum admission applies for entrance to the museum galleries.

For more information, readers may visit or call 717-260-1861.


Unique Watch Brings Rewards February 15, 2018

RGM Watch Company in Mount Joy, longtime friend of the National Watch and Clock Museum in Columbia, which recently celebrated its 25th anniversary, donated a one-of-a-kind watch to mark the milestone. The watch was made with the National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors logo on the dial and the museum's 40th anniversary logo etched on the exhibition case on the back of the watch.

On Jan. 15, the one-of-a-kind RGM watch went up for auction on eBay. The winning bid of $7,200 will aid the museum's mission to preserve the art, science, history, and technology of time and timekeeping.

For more program information, directions, or general museum information, readers may call 717-684-8261 or visit


Railroad Museum Names Volunteer Of The Year February 14, 2018

R. Neil Gruber, who was recently named 2018 Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania Volunteer of the Year, was not always a train buff. The retired Ephrata resident came to his interest in locomotives via a circuitous route. "I started photographing landscapes 40 years ago, and my wife suggested I sell some photographs," recalled Gruber, who spent a year researching art shows with his son, who is also a photographer.

Gruber began selling his photographs, including a few taken at a railroad attraction located across from the museum, 300 Gap Road, Ronks. Around 2005, Gruber sold a photo of a train called The Marion to a man who suggested he display his photos at train shows. "I set up my display with nothing but train pictures," said Gruber, who soon began to develop an interest in trains as a result. In 2007, after visiting the Railroad Museum with another photographer, he talked to a museum representative about joining the Friends of the Railroad Museum, and by 2010, he began to volunteer two days per week at the attraction.

Gruber brings a unique skillset to his volunteer work for the museum. He supplies the museum with photos on a regular basis, including scanning photographs. At his job with a Lancaster County farm manufacturing concern, he had been involved in cataloging and served on a worldwide standards committee. "I could catalog and deal with large amounts of electronic data," explained Gruber, who now uses his experience to help the museum. "From November to December, I uploaded 70 gigabytes of images to a cloud so that (the museum's) online search engine supplier could download it and process it to provide for our researchers," said Gruber. "Now we have 112,000 new thumbnails up there, and they are gorgeous." The photos were so good that some people were making wonderful prints from them. Gruber fixed the problem by adding a watermark to the photos.

As the Railroad Museum works to remodel the ground-floor entrance area, Gruber's expertise with photos has been integral to the new design. "I am working on images for the new exhibit that are rather large," explained Gruber. "The wall straight ahead when you walk in the front door will be one image of the Reading Terminal from way back. I scanned it and made it to the size the supplier specified. The far east wall will be one image too."

Museum director Patrick Morrison took note of Gruber's contributions. "Neil has worked tirelessly and generously lent his technical expertise in the library and archives," Morrison shared. He added that not only is Gruber a valuable resource, but he has implemented data continuity and cost-saving and security procedures to the online collection. "His leadership, insight, and moral support make him an integral team member," Morrison said.

One of Gruber's favorite parts of his volunteer time comes when children visit the museum. "You can hear children stomping up the steps and coming up the elevator," he said, adding that the model train display will soon be operational in the room at the top of the steps. "When I see the children coming in, and they see the trains, they get so excited. That's one of our goals here: (for the children to love the trains)."

As Gruber talked about the children, he heard a train whistle from the railroad yard across the street. Pausing, he noted, "That's the diesel. We get to know the engines too, so we know what's running that day. We can tell by the bells which steamer is running."

Gruber will be formally recognized as the museum's Volunteer of the Year at the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission ceremony in Harrisburg this spring and at the Railroad Museum's annual Members' Day banquet in Lancaster on Saturday, Sept. 29.


Programs Will Highlight Local History February 9, 2018, 230 N. President Ave., Lancaster, will offer several special programs to the community. Wheatland and The Museum Store will be open on Presidents Day, Monday, Feb. 19, but the Research Library, Archives, and Administrative Offices will be closed.

Presidents Day Living History at Wheatland will be held on Feb. 19. The theme will be "The Trans-Atlantic Cable: The Eighth Wonder of the World." Tours will be available on the hour from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. In this first-person presentation, visitors will be transported back to August 1858 as Buchanan and family celebrate the completion of the Trans-Atlantic Cable. The completion of the cable connected President Buchanan in the United States with Queen Victoria in the United Kingdom, a feat that many newspapers called the "Eighth Wonder of the World." Advance tickets are highly recommended. Guests are advised to arrive 15 minutes before their tour entry time for check-in.

A curator's tour of "Freedom: To Secure the Blessings of Liberty" will take place on Thursday, Feb. 22, at 3 p.m. Artifacts not currently on display will be included. The tour will focus on the theme of "Race and Freedom" and provide context to Feb. 22's colloquium titled "Demystifying the Underground Railroad." Advance tickets are required.

On Feb. 22, the Regional History Colloquium will present "Demystifying the Underground Railroad" at 4:30 p.m. A speaker's reception will precede the colloquium at 4 p.m. There are many myths which surround the operation of the Underground Railroad. The colloquium will discuss how it operated, the dangers faced by participants, and its impact upon both the South and the North. As the talk examines the effectiveness of the Underground Railroad, it also will offer insights into its significance as a catalyst for the Civil War. The event is free and open to the public.

Tickets are available online at or by calling 717-392-4633. For additional details, readers may contact Robin Sarratt at ext. 117 or


Clock Museum Receives Grant February 8, 2018

The National Association of Watch and Clock Collectors Inc. (NAWCC) recently received a grant from The Crystal Trust for facility improvements and upgraded storage systems to better present and preserve the horological and historical resources of the world's largest museum and research library dedicated to clocks, watches, time, and timekeeping.

The NAWCC is currently commemorating the National Watch and Clock Museum's 40th year of operation and is planning to celebrate the association's 75th anniversary during the week of Monday, July 16, at its Columbia location.

For more program information or directions, readers may call 717-684-8261 or visit


Pioneers in African American Auto History" February 8, 2018

In honor of Black History Month, the AACA Museum Inc., 161 Museum Drive, Hershey, will present a history of the pioneers in the African-American community who contributed to the advancement of the automobile industry. These men and women laid the foundation for others to pursue careers in such fields as franchised car dealers, designers, custom car builders, race car drivers, and manufacturers.

The "Pioneers in African-American Auto History" exhibit begins with the struggles of African-Americans following the end of slavery and their desire to have their ideas and inventions recognized as equals. Visitors will learn about the only recorded African-American car manufacturer, C.R. Patterson of Ohio and W.H. Phelps, who patented an apparatus for washing over-sized vehicles, along with other esteemed names. While learning the history, visitors can take the opportunity to assemble their own paper traffic signal patented by Garrett Morgan.

As a part of the exhibit, guests will be able to participate with different activities unique to the display. The exhibit will run through Sunday, April 29, in the Member's 1st Federal Credit Union Gallery.

The AACA Museum, Inc. will be closed for building maintenance on Tuesday, Feb. 20, through Friday, March 2. The museum will re-open on Saturday, March 3, at 9 a.m.

There is an admission fee. To learn more about the museum's special exhibits and events, readers may visit

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