John S. Hicks

John S. Hicks-Erie Confectioner and Ice Cream Manufacturer

Friday Feb 5th, 2021

John S. Hicks, son of a former slave, was born in Virginia on February 14, 1845. He began in the ice cream business in Springfield, Massachusetts, in 1864. He moved to Erie, Pennsylvania, in 1878 and soon built his business in a large, modern building at 1216 State Street that housed his ice cream “factory” in the basement, an ice cream parlor on the first floor and an apartment on the second floor he shared with his wife Frances and  daughter Ida.

Feb 3

Recruitment of Black Soldiers In U.S. Military In North West Pennsylvania During the Civil War

Thursday Feb 4th, 2021

A brief history of raising Union black regiments during the Civil War will be provided. The focus will be on the several USCT (United States Colored Troop) regiments that were partially recruited in Northwestern Pennsylvania. 


Long Life & Happiness for All its Residents #43

Wednesday Feb 3rd, 2021

This is a story of a man and his enduring legacy.  Born in Erie of humble beginnings, he became famous as a composer, arranger, editor and lecturer.  He performed on stages in Erie, New York City and throughout the country as far west as Minnesota.  Books have been written about him and a society was formed in 2017 to honor him, his work and to address issues of today through art. His name is Henry Thacker Burleigh.

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Harry T. Burleigh

Monday Feb 1st, 2021

Born and raised in Erie, Harry T. Burleigh graduated from Erie High School in 1887. While working at the Colby Piano Company in Erie as a stenographer, he practiced the piano in his off hours. In 1892, he traveled to New York City where he auditioned for the Conservatory of Music and made the acquaintance with famed composed Anton Dvorak.


Pat Monahan-Erie Rocker

Friday Jan 29th, 2021

Pat Monahan, singer, songwriter, musician and actor was born and raised in Erie, Pennsylvania. Born on February 28, 1969. the youngest of seven children of Jack and Patricia Ann Monahan, he attended McDowell High School in Millcreek Township and Edinboro University of Pennsylvania.


Long Life & Happiness for All its Residents #42

Wednesday Jan 27th, 2021

Have you ever heard of the “Gibson Girl”?  These pen and ink drawings were created by Charles Dana Gibson (1867-1944) and published in “Life” magazine beginning in 1890.  Referred to as the first pin-up girl, she was an idealized version of American young womanhood and every man’s dream.

October 2020 Speaker Series 3

George Gordon Meade Pennsylvania's Forgotten Hero

Tuesday Jan 26th, 2021

Over 150 years after the Civil War, the name of George G. Meade is not well known outside the world of scholars and students of that war, overshadowed by U.S. Grant and shunned by the press, Meade deserves to be recognized for his victory at Gettysburg and his command of the Army of the Potomac longer than any other general. 

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Paul Siple-The Father of Wind Chill

Friday Jan 22nd, 2021

Paul A. Siple, the man who coined the meteorological term “wind chill” a phrase now commonplace in winter weather reports on the news, was born in Montpelier, Ohio, on December 18, 1908. The Siple family moved to Erie, Pennsylvania, where he graduated from Central High School in 1926. In 1923, Siple became an Eagle Scout and earned 59 merit badges.

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The Beauty of a Colorful Mind- Poetry Hour

Thursday Jan 21st, 2021

As a tribute to Black History Month, Hagen History Center is hosting The Beauty of a Colorful Mind; Honoring the Past while Inspiring a Brilliant Future, Poetry Hour. 


Long Life & Happiness to All Its Residents #41

Wednesday Jan 20th, 2021

Jarecki, one name, two different companies here in Erie County.  One began in the mid-1800s, the other in the mid-1900s.  The first was the Jarecki Manufacturing Company begun by Henry Jarecki, the second is Jarecki Valves begun by Frank Jarecki and no, they are not related.