becky 13.4

Long Life & Happiness for All its Residents #13

Wednesday Jun 24th, 2020

Here is the tale of two Erie buildings.  Each were extraordinary late Victorian structures, beautiful and sturdy that led surprisingly short lives.  This is quite the opposite of what this blog is normally about, however; they are stories worthy of being told. 

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Saturday from the Archives

Saturday Jun 20th, 2020

Clara Petrat tells of her activities: going to Market, Butcher, Sunday school, Buffalo, Opera House.  She studies diligently for Algebra and History examinations.  There is a quarrel between Papa and Willie.  Then there is a Social with much preparation including purchase of peaches, ‘got plates, forks’, put on her ‘purple flowers dress’.  Then later ‘pick peaches’.  Since the beginning of her diary, Clara has improved her writing skills, but still needs more.

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Long Life & Happiness for All its Residents #12

Wednesday Jun 17th, 2020

Erie is fortunate to have so many lovely neighborhoods that add to the happiness of all its residents.  I found it interesting to read about the transformation of one very industrious farm in 1888 into a premier neighborhood today.  The foresight and love of Erie was evident in the farm owner and those feelings are not lost today by its current residents.

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Saturday from the Archives

Saturday Jun 13th, 2020

Clara Petrat tells about President McKinley’s assassination and funeral in September, many flags were out.  This diary excerpt is April 2 -Sept 20.  She skipped some pages and resumed writing December 4.

killer angels

Book Review-The Killer Angels by Michael Shaara

Friday Jun 12th, 2020

Michael Shaara’s novel about the Battle of Gettysburg, first published in 1974, won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction the next year. The book has been republished many times and is on the reading list for many U.S. Army officer programs as well as other military academies. The book was also the basis of director Ronald Maxwell’s 1993 movie Gettysburg.

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Long Life & Happiness for All its Residents #11

Wednesday Jun 10th, 2020

I wish all my readers exactly what the title of this blog says, always. The reality exists though, that an inevitable part of life is death.  With that in mind, let’s take a brief look at the history of some cemeteries in Erie.


Virtual Tour- Battles Estate Yellow House

Tuesday Jun 9th, 2020

Take a virtual tour of the Battles Estate Yellow House

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Saturday from the Archives

Saturday Jun 6th, 2020

Clara Petrat’s diary was copied exactly as she wrote it, so there may be some of her writings that will puzzle us.  (What was the Friday evening ‘frace’ that she attended?)

In her brown bag diary, Clara lists her activities including: Thanksgiving, Girls Literary Society, a list of her Christmas gifts(some similar to today), on March 5 Prince Henry ‘come to Erie’, going to the Library, making candy and more.

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TORNADO! The May 31, 1985, Tornado Outbreak: Pennsylvania’s Second Deadliest Natural Disaster

Friday Jun 5th, 2020

On May 31, 1985, thirty-five years ago, a deadly tornado outbreak, that started over the mid-west and intensified over central Ohio, ripped through the region causing the second deadliest natural disaster in Pennsylvania’s history. 43 separate tornadoes would clain 89 lives and uwards of 700 million dollars in damage. 65 fatalities in Pennsylvania places the May 31, 1985, tornado outbreak second only to the 1889 Johnstown Flood which claimed 2,200 lives.



"Long Life & Happiness for All its Residents" #10

Wednesday Jun 3rd, 2020

It’s funny how the potential of a donation and the 1888 book can tie together and become a blog!  A few weeks ago, an Instagram follower offered her piano to the Historical Society as part of our collection.  It was made in Erie and I love adding Erie things, BUT it’s a piano and my storage space is severely limited right now. I am still considering it so Allison, if you read this, I haven’t forgotten!   I did a quick bit of research on the piano, which led me to consider Erie’s strong reputation for the manufacture of pianos and organs in the past.  My focus today is on one building and the history of all the businesses that were located there, including an organ and a piano manufacturer.