The Changing Silhouette of Victorian Women’s Fashion - 1840's

Adam Macrino- Mercyhurst University

Wednesday Jun 30th, 2021

Informed and inspired by the historicism of the Romantic Era, dress silhouettes of the 1840s had a long waisted bodice, tight, narrow sleeves, and a full dome-shaped skirt that would skim the floor. The Gothic revival of the Romantic Era was imitated in the fashion world as women became walking Gothic structures with their dresses utilizing Gothic architectural characteristics such as narrow arches and angular shapes.


Happiness & Long Life for All its Residents #63

Becky Weiser

Wednesday Jun 23rd, 2021

This blog series is now going to change for a while.  Instead of focusing on Erie County history inspired by the book “A Souvenir of Erie Penna Illustrated 1888”, the next several blogs will be based on a new exhibit in the Watson-Curtze mansion, “The Changing Silhouette of Victorian Women’s Fashions."


What’s in a Phrase? Famous Naval Quotes in American History.

Jeff Sherry

Friday Jun 18th, 2021

There are many famous phrases and sayings in American military history that were commonly used and repeated in conversation. Many are lost to most Americans, but several actually have Erie roots.


Long Life & Happiness for All its Residents #62

Becky Weiser

Wednesday Jun 16th, 2021

If we live in Erie County we most likely have our money in one of the following banks:  First National, Erie, Citizens, Huntington, Marquette, Northwest, or PNC; or in a variety of Credit Unions throughout the region.  Prior to these, County residents have had many choices of where to put their money, other than under the mattress or buried in the back yard!  This blog takes a brief look at the history of banks here and you may find some familiar names associated with them.


The Inspired Archivist

Theresa Gamble

Monday Jun 14th, 2021

When I decided to change employers and change jobs, I had two criteria that had to be met - my next adventure had to be either much simpler, or much more interesting.


“You May Fire When Ready, Gridley” Charles Vernon Gridley

Jeff Sherry

Friday Jun 11th, 2021

The history of the United States Navy is sprinkled with famous phrases and memorable statements. “Don’t Give Up the Ship” by Captain James Lawrence and made into a flag by Oliver Hazard Perry during the War of 1812. Another famous naval phrase which remains in use today is “You may fire when ready, Gridley.” Who was Gridley? 


Happiness & Long Life for All its Residents #61

Becky Weiser

Wednesday Jun 9th, 2021

Do you have a secret?  I guess we all do to some extent, but in a way, to many of us it almost seems juvenile to keep secrets from others, especially joining a secret club or having secret handshakes.  So, I was a little surprised when the 1888 book that this blog is based on devoted a fair amount of ink to “Secret Societies”.


Arthur the Aardvark: An Honorary Erieite

Abbie Harrington

Monday Jun 7th, 2021

Arthur the bespectacled aardvark is a familiar and beloved cartoon character to generations of children across the United States. Arthur’s books and television show are known for their heartwarming and relevant lessons which is what has made Arthur such an endearing as well as enduring character for children and adults alike over the years. However, what very few know about Arthur is that the creator of Arthur, Marc Brown, crafted Arthur and his world off of his own childhood experiences in Erie, Pennsylvania.


Upstairs, Downstairs: The Servants at the Watson-Curtze Mansion

Jeff Sherry

Friday Jun 4th, 2021

The Watsons and the Curtzes, like most well-to-do families, employed live-in and part-time servants, such as maids, cooks, gardeners and coachmen. According to census records and City Directories, the Watsons employed 3 – 5 servants at a given time.  The Curtzes employed fewer and by 1940 only two chauffeurs, Luther Hans and Hans Luthi who are likely the same person. 


Happiness & Long Life for All its Residents #60

Becky Weiser

Wednesday Jun 2nd, 2021

In the mid-1800s, large groups of Jewish people emigrated from Germany to the United States.  Denied of owning land in Europe and overall treated differently, they came here with the hopes of a better life. Many assimilated to this country by Americanizing their names, did not work on Sundays and broke kosher laws to fit in.