Friday, October 16, 2009

Artifact Transfers from State Historic Sites

Brandywine Battle Field Collection,
Delaware County, PA
Revolutionary War Period:
rifle bayonet
iron cock to flint lock rifle with French flint
Two French gun flints
1/2 lb. shot with visible cast marks

Artifact collections were transferred this summer to The State Museum, Section of Archaeology from several of the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission (PHMC) State Historic Sites. We’ve chosen to highlight objects from the Brandywine Battlefield collection in this week’s blog to spread the word that severe cuts to the Commission’s budget has led to the loss of staff, suspension of programs, and closure or transfer of visitor centers on the Pennsylvania Trails of History.

The PHMC has temporarily suspended outreach and closed public venues at four of the twenty-three State Historic Sites as of August 14th, 2009. These include the Conrad Weiser homestead exhibit buildings, all visitations at the Joseph Priestley House, The Fort Pitt Museum, and the Brandywine Battlefield Historic Park exhibit buildings. Negotiations are in process for non-profit organizations to take over visitation and public outreach programs. In the meantime, local heritage societies have ramped up fund-raising efforts to meet budgetary shortfalls at all twenty-three State Historic Sites. Please write your legislatures, join the ranks of your local heritage society, and donate to save-our-history fund-raisers. To find information about volunteering and making donations for State Historic Sites click this link to the PHMC Trails of History and explore Pennsylvania’s rich and varied past.

At the PHMC Farm Show exhibit, January 2010, we will celebrate the unique role archaeology has played in understanding and interpreting State Historic Sites.

For those of you who follow our blog and would like to view the PHMC newsletter, click here.

For more information, visit or the Hall of Anthropology and Archaeology at The State Museum of Pennsylvania .

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