Valuing Volunteers, Part II

Program note: Over Memorial Day weekend, the Pennsylvania Military Museum held its annual "World War II Revisited" reenactment. Local public radio affiliate WPSU-FM covered the event--you can listen to a report and see photos here.

This is part two in a three-part tribute to PHMC’s Volunteer of the Year honorees.
This week we continue our recognition of the wonderful volunteers who assist the PHMC all along the Trails of History, although these brief descriptions can hardly do justice to their contributions of time, energy, and passion (more details about each volunteer's work can be found here). We would be truly lost without them and their support, especially in these difficult financial times. Part one of this series highlighted volunteers from Anthracite Heritage Museum, Brandywine Battlefield, Bushy Run Battlefield, Cornwall Iron Furnace, Daniel Boone Homestead, Drake Well Museum, Eckley Miners’ Village, and Ephrata Cloister.

Brian Scott has worked tirelessly to lead the rebuilding of the Flagship Niagara League and garner significant and widespread support for the Erie Maritime Museum and Flagship Niagara in the wake of severe budget cuts. His efforts have transformed the organization into a community leader and have helped to make Niagara a unifying symbol in Erie. In recognition of his contributions, Brian also received one of several Outstanding Service Awards bestowed this year.

An active member of the Friends of Graeme Park since 1987, Margaret Lotter has served in many capacities, recently completing a term as president of the board. She continues to serve in an advisory capacity and is spearheading the development of the Elizabeth Graeme Fergusson Poetry Scholarship.

Diane Horan has volunteered at Hope Lodge for 20 years, working with the Friends newsletter, the Summer Camp program, and more recently the site’s holiday event, Winter Wonderland. This past year, she and her team had only a few weeks to absorb the news of the budget cuts (and closing of Hope Lodge) before pulling off a successful program.

Folks at Joseph Priestley House have come to depend on Elanor Rebecca “Becky” Hollenbach, whether it’s leading tours (in a 1790s-style dress and cap she sewed herself), helping to care for the historic house, or providing behind-the-scenes support (or repairs). Always eager to learn something new that she can share with visitors, Becky has taken on several period-appropriate crafts, such as cord-making.

Polly Miller has volunteered at Landis Valley Village & Farm Museum since 1993 and has spent at least the past 11 years as a weekly volunteer for the Heirloom Seed Program, packaging seeds, filling orders, and providing all kinds of support at the annual Herb & Garden Faire. She’s also helped feed countless hungry Landis Valley Institute attendees over the years and is one of those all-around volunteers who does whatever needs to be done.

As Old Economy Village’s volunteer printer since 2006, Frank Vogrin demonstrates the site’s historic press for visitors and produces a variety of printed pieces for the museum’s use and distribution. Combining skills he learned operating his family’s printing business with his experience as a middle school teacher, Frank helps bring an important part of Old Economy’s history to life.

Dee Murray (shown above taking an audiotour) and Carol Regan share the spotlight this year as Pennsbury Manor’s volunteers of the year. Dee has employed her experience as a school librarian to help shape and improve the site’s library and worked to create a volunteer library to meet the needs of docents and others. Carol uses her organizational skills to assist in the office, managing large mailings, wrangling staff paperwork, tabulating visitor surveys, and making phone calls to schools. Both Carol and Dee also help with Pennsbury’s many school programs and special events.

Author, conservationist, and naturalist Curt Weinhold has brought his considerable photographic skills to bear on his work with the Pennsylvania Lumber Museum. His images of the Museum grounds, buildings, and events have appeared on calendars, posters, and books; he is currently photographing items in the museum store for web-based marketing and is making photographic copies of historic images in the collection.

Watch for part III in a couple of weeks to meet the rest of our Volunteers of the Year, the Outstanding Service Award winners, and the Chairman’s Award winners.


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