Bev Ulich Mural & Architectural Walking Tour
The Bev Ulrich Mural & Architectural Walking Tour run every year in October. Historic sites include Winters Heritage House Museum, the Peach Alley School House of the Elizabethtown Historical Society, and the St. Peter Historic Church. Murals include “From Donegal to Donegal”, “Four Centuries of Elizabethtown”, and “A.S. Kreider Shoe Factory.” Approximately 300 students, teachers, and chaperones from the Elizabethtown Area School District and some students and teachers from the St. Peter School join the annual fall tour for third graders dedicated to the teacher who originated a historic walking tour in the early 1990′s.
PSU Students Develop Instructional Materials for Third Grade Walking Tour
Susan Asbury-Newsome of Elizabethtown, formerly a curator at the Strong National Museum of Play and the Museum of Southern Decorative Arts, taught a one-credit American Studies workshop at Penn State Harrisburg this February. Susan collaborated with Lori Donofrio-Galley and Dale Good, genealogy volunteer, to develop an assignment for eleven Education students, some enrolled in undergraduate and some in graduate study. Led by museum staff and volunteers, Penn State students researched local history in order to design instructional materials for the annual third grade historic walking tour.
Their assignment? “You work in the Education Department at Winters Heritage House Museum. The Executive Director has asked you to write a post-visit activity guide for the upcoming fall walking tour for third graders from Elizabethtown Area School District. The post-visit activity guide must meet PA Academic Standards for history and reinforces important events in Elizabethtown’s history that students learn on the tour.”
The final activities will become new “tools” in the museum’s Digital History Toolbox resource for area teachers. Mary Karnes, Tom Campbell, Denny Karalfa, and Mary Conrad volunteered to serve as student guides and mentors.
A Digital History Toolbox is a web-based museum-school initiative that positions Winters Heritage House Museum as a curriculum and instructional resource and distinguishes Elizabethtown Area School District (EASD) as a school committed to exposing students to experiential learning opportunities beyond the classroom.
Partially funded by the Pennsylvania Historical & Museum Commission, A Digital History Toolbox allowed the museum to establish a framework in which to preserve Wayne Fettro’s local history murals as a digitized collection for ongoing education. One impetus for the project was the integration of select murals into an annual third grade historic walking tour. Another was advancing the museum’s mission to preserve community history, especially given the impermanent nature of exterior paintings.
The concept? Using electronic mural components as teaching “tools” balances tangible evidence with abstract ideas presented in textbooks. Incumbent upon the museum was learning enduring ways to collect, preserve, archive, and manage a wealth of information and images. EASD identified Communities, Immigration, and Maps and Globes as the PA Standards linked to downtown murals. Museum volunteers photographed murals and drafted scripts for tour guides for posting on a “teachers-only” secure side of the museum website.
Heritage Artisans Guild (HAG)
The Heritage Artisans Guild is a co-op of 17 artisans from Elizabethtown and surrounding areas, which formed in 2009. These local artisans focus on historical trades, crafts, and art forms done in both traditional and contemporary manners. The artisans are interested in sharing and learning from one another, educating the public about art forms, and marketing their works of art through the museum’s Friday Shop and Art Gallery, formerly known as the Nogging Shop.
HAG artisans are active museum volunteers who lead programs, classes, and workshops; participate as vendors during the annual Fall Art Show and the annual Holiday Craft Show; and demonstrate during the Elizabethtown Fair and during other on-site or community heritage programs.
Art forms represented by the group include wood carving, painting, weaving, gourd art, leatherwork, fraktur, oil painting, porcelain painting, ironwork, handspun and dyed yarns, felting, embroidery, knitting, fabric painting, restored and framed tin ceiling tiles and jewelry, book illustrating and writing, and alpaca fiber art.
Members are Kathy Graham, Bob Hill, Patty Kile, Patsy Kline, Nancy Landis, Joe McIntyre, Sue Myers, Carolyn Newcomer, Stanley Newcomer, Pam Potts, Jennifer Ruch, and Sandy and Ted Shelly.
Seibert Library and Research Center
The Seibert Library is a small genealogy library with a fairly extensive collection of local history and genealogy resources. The focus of the holdings include Elizabethtown and surrounding area in the Central PA region. The collection includes books, periodicals, over 50 oral histories on tapes and transcripts, maps, photographs, yearbooks, family histories, and other historical documents and valuable artifacts.
An archive of local and family history was established at the Museum when the Heritage House Genealogy Library Committee formed on September 4, 1990. Several volunteers from the community, some librarians, committed to developing a genealogy library at the then fledgling museum. In 1991 a lifetime resident of Elizabethtown presented the first book of the library’s collection. Another prominent resident donated a collection of materials that became the nucleus of the library.
Over the years, the size and scope of the library collection grew. In 1998, with generous contributions from the Seibert family, the Heritage House Genealogy Library moved to a larger remodeled space within the first floor of the museum. As a tribute to the Seibert family benefactors, the Board of Directors renamed the library.