The City Beautiful Reformers

Cities all across America in the early twentieth century pushed for the implementation of parks and other open spaces. This movement is known as "The City Beautiful Movement" and it was a push to beautify and improve American cities. Among these cities was the capital of Pennsylvania, Harrisburg. Vance McCormick, the mayor at the start … Continue reading The City Beautiful Reformers

Ask Not What Your [City] Can Do For You…

For our first project, we were each asked to choose The Patriot newspaper articles, from among those we'd previously collected, and analyze what they tell us about Harrisburg's "campaign for beauty.” As a class, our hope is that this brief study will provide us with a better understanding of the progress of this movement and how … Continue reading Ask Not What Your [City] Can Do For You…

The City Votes: Spatial Influences of the Reformers

No movement can be successful without a group of people willing to lead the charge, to organize events and inspire people to action. Thus, the ways in which reformers interact with the public and with each other can say a lot about the change the reformers created. This holds true for the Campaign for Improvements … Continue reading The City Votes: Spatial Influences of the Reformers

For Richer and Poorer

A week ago, at the Dauphin County Historical Society, I found my project of interest to be but a small fish in a big sea. Our Digital History class took a trip to these archives to conduct research for our third project where we will be creating biographies for important figures in the improvement campaign. … Continue reading For Richer and Poorer

Digital Harrisburg Project: A Fall Update

The rapid pace of a new semester at Messiah College and the good things happening with the Digital Harrisburg Initiative have left not a single moment to write an update about our collective work in the Digital Harrisburg Initiative. At mid-semester, I've finally got a moment to give readers a sense of the growing energy of the new initiative. 1. Digital History Course Student … Continue reading Digital Harrisburg Project: A Fall Update

Archives, and Articles, and Analysis, Oh My

Nothing immerses you in history like physically engaging with primary sources. Physical interaction allows for a greater conception and understanding of the material. So, when our Digital History class took a trip to the Pennsylvania State Archives in Harrisburg on September 24th, the experience was well worth the drive and the cost of parking. At … Continue reading Archives, and Articles, and Analysis, Oh My

Digital History: PA State Archives

Digital History is the use of digital media for the study and practice of history. This past week our Digital History class visited the Pennsylvania State Archives in order to gain a better understanding of the process of Digital History, and to also access and digitize tax records from the city of Harrisburg in the … Continue reading Digital History: PA State Archives

Whether ’tis Nobler…

As I stood at Desk #1 in the Pennsylvania State Archives, tears welled up in my eyes. Maybe it was the fact that we had the privilege of blowing early 20th century dust off Harrisburg tax records or the fact that this same dust was deeply stuck in my eye; either way it was a … Continue reading Whether ’tis Nobler…

What’s Black and White and Read All Over?

On the morning of September 24th, our Digital History class took a field-trip to the State Archives, located in central Harrisburg. I had the opportunity to complete research in the archives during my internship this summer, but only worked with the microfilm collection, so it was a really neat experience to actually handle original documents … Continue reading What’s Black and White and Read All Over?