Bradford County Historical Society News

Bradford County Historical Society NewsFacebook photo.

The Bradford County Historical Society (BCHS) Board of Trustees met on Saturday March 2, at the museum in Towanda.

Society President Henry G. Farley announced the resignation from the board of trustee Lorelei Colton. Lorelei represented the Troy, Alba, and Canton area on the board and due to family commitments is no longer able to serve.

In the report of the Manager / Curator, Matthew Carl reported that he set up the new digital subscription service for the Settler, created a new membership form and notified the membership that this service is now available. Carl reported that since the digital subscription service was announced the society has gained six new members.

Carl also reported that he updated the email contact list through the MailChimp service. There are just under 600 email addresses on the list. He is now able to send out much more professional emails updates, news, and press releases to members and the public. The first mailing of 600 emails had only one person unsubscribe.

Matt also reported that he is working on the schedule for Friday Night and the Museum. Four programs are lined up and he is working on the final two.

The entire website has been updated.

A total of 17 out of 78 of the Jim Smith tapes have been transferred to mp3 files. That represents 25 hours of audio transferred so far. Jim Smith spent his free time over a 40-year span researching and collecting the history of Barclay Mountain. The tapes that are being transferred are interviews Jim did with residents and descendants of Barclay residents.

Website users for the period: 606. The Facebook page now has 1,231 members; the Twitter page has 72 followers.

The membership committee chair, Joe Jones, reported that the committee will be meeting March 6 and the events for membership will be announced at the April meeting.

Margaret Walsh, chairperson of the nominating committee, announced that she has a candidate for the open seat vacated by Lorelei Colton, and that interviews and recommendations will be forthcoming.

Henry G. Farley reported that the May Settler is in the works. This issue will focus on photos donated to the society in 2018. The aim of the issue is to let the membership know of their vast photographic holdings and inform them that they encourage the donations of photographs to the museum to preserve them for future generations.

The board spent some time discussing the 150th anniversary of the society, which will occur in 2020. Events will be planned to commemorate this significant year.

Under correspondence, Farley read several notes received from members complimenting the society for the February issue of THE SETTLER, which told the story of the 1918 flu pandemic in Bradford County.

In the Library Clerk’s report, Denise Golden reported that there were 42 registered patrons for the period and 29 volunteer hours logged. Volunteers continue to work on filing Bradford County Court files in archival boxes – they are currently working on the years 1828-1833; Towanda Borough Map cataloging; and sorting photos for the Settler. A surname search for the Stone and Lee family was completed.

Gifts received for the period were: “On Top of a Mountain”, memoirs of extreme winter in 1958, compiled and given by Patrick O’Keefe, Port Clinton, Ohio. Patrick grew up in Sheshequin Township. Brenchley and Dunbar photos, Heverly’s subscriber’s lists to the History of the Towandas, Our Boys in Blue and Pioneer and Patriot Families were given by Janet Ordway of Troy. Collection of photos, clippings, certificates and report cards, etc. from the Estate of Joyce Greenough Bixby, given by her son Scott Bixby, Mansfield, Pa. Photos from the Towanda High Class of 1930, photos from Tom Felton and a menu from Shaw’s Lunch, given by Suky Schuster, Towanda. Map of Towanda – “Warehouse Lots Owned by Gen Patton”, given by W. Alan Shaw, Towanda. Collection of Towanda memorabilia and photos of Spring Lake and Powell, given by Richard Webster of West Chester, Pa.

The Bradford County Historical Society is one of the oldest in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, having been founded in 1870. The society and museum are housed in the historic old Bradford County Jail at 109 Pine St. in Towanda. The research library is open Wednesday, Thursday and Friday, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and the first Saturday of the month from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The museum exhibits are currently closed for the winter and available by appointment only. The society is a recipient agency of the Pennsylvania Historic and Museum Commission and the Bradford County United Way.

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