Charter Day is Here Again

Charter Day is now upon us, and I hope that many of you will be able to visit this Sunday, March 11. In addition to free admission, some sites will be offering special activities as a celebration of Pennsylvania's birthday (see listings below). I'll also say that we appreciate your visits throughout the year, and I know that I'm preaching to the choir when I say that your admission fees (and program fees and museum store purchases) support the work our Trails of History sites do to preserve and share our Pennsylvania heritage (here endeth the lesson). Also, don't forget to turn your clocks ahead or you'll miss an hour of the fun (and yes, I know that a lot of clocks take care of it themselves these days, but I like to cling to the past).

Charter granted by King Charles II to William Penn in 1681

Anthracite Heritage Museum
“Neighborhood Women: Medical Caregivers in the Anthracite Region”—speaker is Karol Weaver, associate professor of history at Susquehanna University.

Brandywine Battlefield
The site will be open from noon to 4 p.m. and will feature a program (demos, lectures, book-signing) on Ferguson's Ordnance Rifle.

Conrad Weiser Homestead
Living History Program—members of the 1st and 3rd Battalion of the Pennsylvania Regiment and Regiment de la Reine will demonstrate French and Indian war period arms, uniforms, and equipment.

Cornwall Iron Furnace
The museum will be open free of charge from noon to 5 p.m.

Daniel Boone Homestead
Charter Day Open House and 1st PA Regiment Flintlock Shoot—there will be a full slate of activities, including open hearth cooking, blacksmithing demos, colonial dancers, stories of Native American heritage and culture, leatherworking and textile processing. Reenactors from the 1st PA Regiment will be on the rifle range to demonstrate flintlock shooting. Light refreshments will be served; admission is free for Charter Day, but donations are graciously accepted.

Drake Well Museum
The site will be open free of charge from 2-4 p.m. and will feature a temporary exhibit on archaeology. The first 100 visitors through the door win fabulous Charter Day prizes!

Eckley Miners’ Village
Bob Vybrenner will present a program on the Wyoming Valley and Sugarloaf Massacres, two Revolutionary War clashes involving British loyalists and Native Americans on one side and American militia and civilians on the other.

PHMC/Ephrata Cloister

Ephrata Cloister
The Ephrata Cloister Chorus will perform in the Saal at 2:00, 3:00, and 4:00 p.m., and there will be a bake sale to benefit the student historians program.

Erie Maritime Museum and US Brig Niagara
The museum will be open free of charge from noon to 5 p.m. (the ship will be in Cleveland for repairs).

Graeme Park
The site will be open free of charge from noon to 4 p.m.

Joseph Priestley House
Charter Day and Dr. Priestley’s Birthday—the site reopens for the season and will feature chemistry demonstrations by “Dr. Priestley” at 1:30 and 2:30.

Landis Valley Village & Farm Museum
Charter Day and exhibit opening—be on hand for the unveiling of a new changing exhibit, “The Golden Age of an American Art Form: The Lancaster Long Rifle.” The exhibit brings together rifles and other firearms from the museum’s collection as well as a number of private collections and will be on view through Dec. 31. (Go here for an article on the exhibit.)

PHMC/Pennsbury Manor
Pennsbury Manor
Craft demonstrations and Manor House tours are planned at the home of Pennsylvania’s founder (and the reason we celebrate Charter Day); admission is free but please bring a non-perishable food item to benefit Bucks County Housing Group’s Penndel Food Pantry.

Pennsylvania Military Museum
The museum reopens for the season with free admission.

Railroad Museum of Pennsylvania
The museum will be open free of charge from noon to 5 p.m.

State Museum of Pennsylvania
1681 Charter Exhibit—each year we display the original charter of Pennsylvania (which normally lives in the State Archives) along with special “guest” documents. This year’s special guests are historical maps of Pennsylvania, complementing the National Geographic Giant Map of North America (on display from Feb. 18-March 15). Winners of the 2011 National History Day in Pennsylvania contest will be recognized and some will be displaying their work (through June 17); local genealogical and historical societies will be on hand to talk about their programs and services; students from Harrisburg Sci-Tech High School will serve as docents for the Giant Map; and there will be storytelling and William Penn himself.

PHMC/Washington Crossing Historic Park
Washington Crossing Historic Park
The site will be open free of charge from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., the blacksmith shop will be open and re-enactors will teach children how drills were conducted. Come see what type of foods William Penn ate, what types of items he may have ordered from the blacksmith, and commemorate Charter Day!


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