Ready for Summer

A Slow Walk on the Wild Side Please be sure to check the PHMC Events Calendar for information on upcoming programs (still mostly virtual). The Trailheads Rec Room pages to the right of your screen have other online offerings that you may find interesting.
A gravel path cuts through green grass and crosses a small wooden bridge. A two-story wooden building is in the background, surrounded by trees.
The Weaver's House (left) and God's Acre (cemetery at right) at Ephrata Cloister (photo via EC Facebook page)

The American Association for State and Local History (AASLH) recently announced the recipients of this year's Leadership in History Awards. Ephrata Cloister was one of 38 history organizations from across the U.S. honored for their work in 2020. Last fall, in the face of the continuing Covid-19 pandemic, Ephrata reimagined their long-standing holiday programs--some of them offered for more than 40 years--and recreated them for online audiences. The result was three virtual programs: "Candlelight Chat," a Facebook Live first person conversation with Ephrata Householder Michael Miller (you can watch it on YouTube); a 40-minute version of "Christmas at the Cloister" with photo collage of the Cloister and previously recorded music by the Ephrata Cloister Chorus, presented via Zoom and YouTube; and "Witness to History," a 40-minute film featuring Ephrata's Student Historians telling the story of Ephrata Cloister's role as a hospital in 1777-78, also shown via Zoom and YouTube. I'll also note that Ephrata has also offered numerous lectures as part of the Ephrata Virtual Academy series and adapted their popular Winter History Class to the Zoom platform. Congratulations to all involved on this well-deserved award.


Tomorrow, June 19, is Juneteenth, marking the day in 1865 that enslaved people in Galveston, TX, learned that they were, in fact, free (information that had been kept from them by slaveholders). First celebrated the following year in Texas, Juneteenth has become a much more widespread holiday. It was declared a state holiday in Pennsylvania in 2019, and as I write this, President Biden is signing legislation to make Juneteenth a federal holiday. Many communities around the state will be celebrating Juneteenth tomorrow and organizations will be offering educational programs that help to put Juneteenth, slavery, and the ongoing struggle for racial equity into historical context. Here are some online resources you may find useful:

Weekly Wildlife Report

Doe and fawn stand on grassy area. A pickup truck, parking lot, and stairs are in the background.
The lawn mower barely distracted this duo enjoying the grass at Brandywine Battlefield Park (photo by Ken Levin)


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