PHMC Volunteers of the Year for 2016 Part 3

The Pennsbury Society
Val Long and Steve Ringel
Val has been a Pennsbury volunteer for 12 years, and Steve has been with the site for 9 years. Both of them help the site on a weekly basis by giving guided tours to the public and to school groups. Besides tour guiding, Val interprets wool and flax production, and Steve’s specialty is interpreting the Worker’s Cottage for school groups. During the annual Holly Nights event, Steve is featured as Father Christmas in the long-time crowd favorite Mummers’ Play. Both of them embody the best of the volunteerism spirit, bringing professionalism, enthusiasm, and energy to whatever they do on site. We thank them for their reliability, their willingness to be flexible and adapt to any situation, and their continued support, ensuring that Pennsbury Manor is able to provide a great experience to all visitors.

Pennsylvania Lumber Museum Associates
Carola Glennon
Carola came to the Lumber Museum after her husband passed away and friends who were active museum board members suggested volunteering as a way to occupy her time. In a little over a year, she has become a priceless member of the museum team. Every Sunday, she arrives early and does not leave until windows, floors, bathrooms, and rugs are clean, and the dusting is to her liking. In addition, she has helped with many programs and activities: preparing platters of food for luncheons, baking desserts for birthdays or any special occasion, assembling the 8-foot log cake for Bark Peelers’ Festival, and answering visitors’ questions about the cake. Carola’s purpose in volunteering is to keep busy, and the museum staff and board members are happy to help her achieve that goal. We thank Carola for her dedication, hard work, and support for the Lumber Museum.

Friends of the Pennsylvania Military Museum
Scott Davis
In 2010, Scott attended a Veterans Day event in Carlisle, where veteran Vietnam gun truck crew members displayed replica trucks and shared their memories with the public. Inspired by this event and his family’s four generations of military service, he looked for a place to volunteer. “When I saw the smiles on kids’ faces, and the eyes of the Vietnam vets, sometimes in tears, I knew this was a calling that I wanted to answer.” By the spring of 2011, he was fully immersed in interpreting military history at the Military Museum in Boalsburg. Having purchased a 1954 Dodge M-37 truck for conversion into a replica Vietnam-era gun truck for static displays, he particularly enjoys giving tours to student groups and is thankful for those educators who bring their new classes every year. We thank Scott for his dedication to sharing these important stories with the public, especially our younger visitors, and are grateful for his service and commitment.

Friends of the Railroad Museum
James "Stu" Jack
Stu joined the volunteer corps at the Museum in March of 2014 and quickly became a familiar and reliable face in both Rolling Stock Hall and the archives. He is generally at the Museum multiple days in a week, splitting his time between working behind the scenes and interacting with Museum visitors. In Rolling Stock Hall, Stu can most frequently be seen in the GP-30, helping visitors of all ages connect with history. Behind the scenes in the Museum’s archives, he has helped on a number of conservation projects, rehousing documents in acid free folders and boxes and cleaning and removing metal fasteners from a large group of Pennsylvania Railroad property deeds. He is currently working on rehousing and cataloging the Don Wood negative collection, which is expected to be included in new exhibits now in design. We thank Stu for his hard work, dedication, and flexibility and congratulate him on this well-deserved honor.

Historical and Genealogical Society of Somerset County
Terry Werner
Terry has spent more than 25 years volunteering at Somerset, working on timber-frame and log construction projects at Somerset Historical Center and interpreting these projects and skills to the public at the annual Mountain Craft Days festival. He also serves as an instructor for the Center’s Coopering School each spring, teaching participants the basic skills of making a maple sugar keeler using only traditional hand tools and techniques. In 2016, he was instrumental in the building of a working lime kiln, lining the interior of the kiln with fire brick and facing the outside with brick and stone. At Mountain Craft Days, he helped load coal and limestone into the kiln so that it could be lit; throughout the three days of the festival he interpreted the process of burning lime and the uses for agricultural lime and building materials. Terry is a talented and much-valued volunteer who enjoys history and construction work. We thank him not only for his skilled contributions to major projects but also for his willingness to help others learn and understand.

The Friends of the State Museum
Merikay Wood
Merikay has been a dedicated volunteer in the State Museum’s Section of Archaeology since 1995. She has contributed hundreds of hours each year processing artifacts and assisting with public outreach programs. Most Wednesday mornings, Merikay can be found brightening up the Archaeology lab with her smiling face and sunny disposition and putting everyone around her at ease. Few volunteers can master the task of labeling catalog information on minute objects as Merikay has. This is a crucial step in processing archaeological artifacts and is essential for future analysis. Merikay’s steady hand and perfect penmanship are valuable assets for the collections of the Section and The State Museum. We thank Merikay for her dedication and support and are pleased to honor her as Volunteer of the Year for 2016.

PHMC’s Outstanding Service Award for 2016
Drake Well Museum and Park
Friends of Drake Well
John “Augie” Holtz
Over the past three decades, John “Augie” Holtz, an oil man by trade, has contributed his industry expertise and his passion for preserving and sharing Pennsylvania’s petroleum history to significantly advance Drake Well’s collections, exhibit, and interpretive goals. He has spent the majority of his volunteer service supervising day-to-day operations of McClintock Well #1, dedicating thousands of hours to pumping and maintaining the well since it became Commonwealth property in 2000. In addition to his operational role, Augie has been the museum’s “go to” tour guide for McClintock, teaching hundreds of visitors about the well’s extensive history and unique mechanics. Over the years, he has advised the museum’s Curator on tool identification, engine repair, and the history of petroleum technology. He has restored three of the Museum’s antique oil field engines. Augie played a major role in Quaker State’s 1994 donation of the Yo-Yo Drilling Rig, a key artifact in the museum’s interpretation of the oil industry during World War II. He served on the Friends of Drake Well Board of Directors from 2000 through 2009, then as an advisor to the board through 2012. As the museum’s longest-serving volunteer, he has left an indelible mark not only on the site but on the staff and volunteers. We are extremely grateful to Augie for his enthusiastic contributions of time and energy, his invaluable expertise, and his steadfast commitment to Drake Well Museum and Park.