Quick Links

Next Meeting:

2015 Donations to the Archive – Cheryl Leibold, and Westover Park and The Devon Fireworks Explosion – Michele Hawk

Upcoming Presentations

Special Events:

"Behind the Doors"

Tredyffrin Community Day

Recent Meetings:

2015 Members Excursion

Life Along the River: Past, Present and Future – Michael Tolle

Past Meetings


The Society Supports 2015 Paoli Blues Fest

TEHS on Tredyffrin Township TV

TEHS at the Devon Horse Show and Country Fair

The S. Paul Teamer Awards

Society Elects New President

State Support for the Society

Kirkner Essay Contest Awards



Our Next Meeting

At our next public meeting on Sunday, May 15, 2016 at 2:00 pm, the featured presentation will include:

Heyburn Roye Log Cabin, 1990
Courtesy Heidi Sproat

2015 Donations to the Archive

by Cheryl Leibold

Society archivist Cheryl Leibold will present an overview of the various photographs, memorabilia, and other research materials donated to the Society in 2015. Highlights include the original deed and other documents related to the Walker one-room school house in Tredyffrin Township, a group of surveyor's drawings of local properties, and an embossed cigar box from the Paoli News Agency.

Site of the Devon Fireworks Explosion, 1930
TEHS Archives

Westover Park and The Devon Fireworks Explosion

by Michele Hawk and Gail Cappelli

The site of the infamous 1930 Devon Fireworks Explosion later became Tredyffrin Township's proposed Westover Park but was never fully developed. A group of local citizens organized as Tredyffrin Bird Town recently worked with the Township and the Audubon Society to repurpose the property, and as of 16 March 2016, the site is now officially known as the Westover Bird Sanctuary. Michele and Gail will guide us through this remarkable story.


This presentation will be held at the Easttown Library & Information Center in Berwyn, PA.

Visitors are cordially invited to public Society meetings and events, and there is no admission fee.



Upcoming Presentations

More information will be available soon on these meetings coming up in the months ahead:

15 May 2016 Easttown Library 2015 Donations to the Archive by Cheryl Leibold, and Westover Park and The Devon Fireworks Explosion by Michele Hawk
12 June 2016 Wayne Annual Members Excursion: Old Roberts School in Wayne
18 September 2016 Tredyffrin Library Slim the Lineman and the Power Lines that Bisected the Great Valley by Michael Morrison
16 October 2016 Tredyffrin Library Power to Charm—Witchcraft in England, New England and Penn's Land by Clarissa Dillon, Ph.D.
20 November 2016 Tredyffrin Library Culver & Rogers, Philadelphia Architects and their Main Line Projects by Greg Prichard


Special Events Sponsored by Other Organizations

Tredyffrin Community Day


The Society exhibited at Tredyffrin Community Day and Wilson Farm Park Tenth Birthday Celebration from 10 am until 4 pm on Satuday 4 October 2014 at Wilson Park in Chesterbrook. Many people stoped by and visited us!



Society Special Events

"Behind the Doors"

The original Tredyffrin Easttown History Club occasionally held meetings at the various historic Inns in the area, as noted in this quote from an article about the history of the Club found in the October 1965 issue of the Quarterly (v.13 no.4, pg. 80):

On March 7, 1939 the first annual Banquet was held at the Windmill Tea Room (the General Jackson Inn) at Paoli. Originally the Club had these affairs at some historic inn. To date the following Inns have played host: The King of Prussia (once), Ye Old Bull Tavern (three times), General Warren (twice), Wayside Inn (General Jackson) (Five times).

Starting in 2013 this tradition was revived. So far we have visited two inns, both with tours and history presentations followed by a delicious five course food and wine pairing dinner. Both events were a great success and we look forward to more in the future. For more information, view the individual invitations for these events:

A portion of the proceeds from these events benefits the Tredyffrin Easttown Historical Society.



2015 Members Excursion

On Saturday, June 13, 2015 at 2 pm all current Society members were invited to attend our Annual Members Excursion to historic St. David's Church.

The old St. David's Church (1715).

300th Anniversary of St. David's Church

The 2015 Annual Members Excursion took us to St. David's Episcopal Church in Wayne, celebrating their 300th anniversary this year. We joined members of the Radnor Historical Society and the King of Prussia Historical Society in the recedntly renovated (and air-conditioned) old sanctuary for a very informative presentation by Sexton Michael Merrick on the fascinating and long history of the church and grounds. Following his talk, the group gathered for conversation and refreshments, including delicious tea sandwiches and seasonal beverages, and intrepid visitors were encouraged to brave the summer temperatures and explore the grounds, and in particular the graveyard that holds many noteworthy figures.

For more information you can visit the St. David's Episcopal Church website.



Our Most Recent Meeting

At the public meeting on Sunday, April 17, 2016, the featured event was:

Book covers (front & back)

Life Along the River: Past, Present and Future

by Michael Tolle

Renowned local historian Michael Tolle spoke about the past, present and future of the towns along the lower Schuylkill River. The eight towns from Pottstown to the Conshohockens are the subject of Tolle's most recent book, They've Been Down So Long ... Getting Up's Still On Their Minds.

Tolle describes his approach as urban history in support of urban activism. They've Been Down So Long ... Getting Up's Still On Their Minds is addressed directly to those who wish to see their long-suffering towns—and others—undergo a revival.

This presentation was held at the Easttown Library & Information Center in Berwyn, PA starting at 2 pm. Visitors are cordially invited, and there is no admission charge at our public meetings.


Michael E. Tolle has lived a variety of experiences, which have influenced both his selection of a late-in-life career, and how he pursues it. He is the author of What Killed Downtown? – Norristown, Pennsylvania, From Main Street to the Malls, and blogs regularly in support of urban revival in America's small towns, using the eight towns on Pennsylvania's lower Schuylkill River as his subjects.

His blog “The More Things Change...” ( addresses national issues through the lens of his subject towns on the lower Schuylkill. Despite its narrow geographic focus, Tolle's blog has an international audience, with an especially loyal contingent from Norway.

Michael earned a B.S.F.S. (Bachelor of Science in Foreign Service) at Georgetown University in 1969. A summer spent as a volunteer for the World Relief Commission delivering commodities to refugees in Viet Nam led him to return there, this time as an Assistant Relief/Rehabilitation Advisor for the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). After college graduation, he began a year-long study program in the Vietnamese language at Roslyn, Virginia, followed by two years in Viet Nam, first in a province resettling refugees, then in Saigon. As the Deputy Chief of the Refugee Division, Michael was responsible for the day-to-day operations in support of refugees throughout the country.

Michael returned to the U.S. and started his own business that specialized in home remodeling, energy conservation and alternative energy projects. In 1983, in support of his wife's career, Michael became the primary caregiver for their two sons. After they were established in school, he began graduate studies at Villanova University, where he earned a Masters Degree in History, and then attended Temple University, seeking a Ph.D. He completed all requirements for the degree except the dissertation.

After leaving the Ph.D. program, Michael obtained positions as an Instructor in History at Delaware County Community College and Montgomery County Community College. In early 2006, his wife accepted a job offer that required a move to San Francisco. He resides there today, continuing his research and focus on the history and future of our small towns.


This presentation was held at the Easttown Library & Information Center in Berwyn, PA starting at 2 pm.



TEHS Programs on Tredyffrin Township TV

A selection of pre-recorded programs featuring presentations from past meetings of the Society are available for viewing on Tredyffrin Township Television, found on Comcast Channel 15, Verizon Channel 24 and On-Demand.

We are looking for volunteers who would be willing to assist with the recording of our presentations for later broadcast. Free training is available to township residents at the Greenwood Studio facility in the Township Building. Please contact us or Studio Manager Gene Donahue if you are interested.

Program Schedule:

  • 7 am on Sunday and Monday
  • 1 pm on Monday
  • 7 pm on Thursday and Saturday



TEHS at the Devon Horse Show and Country Fair

Front cover of the new book

Roger Thorne and a visitor at the TEHS table at Devon


From 22 May – 1 June 2014 Society members staffed a table located at northwest corner of the Committee Stand, very close to the main entrance, where our new publication "Rediscovering Devon" was on sale. Many people stopped by and visited, and many others passed by and admired the large "Rediscovering Devon" timeline banner immediately above our display table.

On Friday 12 September 2014 we once again set up our display table in the same location during the Devon Fall Classic.

John & Nancy, Dixon, Jim & Herb on "booth duty"

On 15 June 2014, the Society held our 2014 Member Excursion at DHSCF.
Click here for more information and photos.



S. Paul Teamer Awards

As we passed the milestone of our 75th anniversary as an organization in 2012, it seemed fitting to establish a new annual award to recognize the especially significant contributions made by some of our members over the years. In considering what name this award should have we decided to reach back to the very beginning of what was then The Tredyffrin Easttown History Club and to founder and first president S. Paul Teamer. It is certainly worthwhile to look back at those first few volumes of the Quarterly and rediscover the noteworthy articles written by Teamer and his colleague Franklin L. Burns, among others, who set a high standard for those who followed.

At the January 2012 Annual Meeting, we were pleased to present the S. Paul Teamer Award for outstanding contributions to the Society to the first three recipients: Sue Andrews, Herb Fry, and Joyce Post.

At the January 2013 Annual Meeting, we were pleased to announce the names of the next two recipients of the award: Bob Goshorn (posthumous) and Mike Bertram. Since Mike was unable to attend this meeting, his award will be presented at a future meeting.

At the January 2014 Annual Meeting, we were pleased to announce the names of the 2014 recipients of the award: Franklin L. Burns (posthumous) and former president Roger D. Thorne.

At the May 2015 Meeting (rescheduled from the January 2015 Annual Meeting cancelled due to adverse weather conditions), we were pleased to recognize the 2015 recipients of the award: Barbara Fry (posthumous), Mary Robertson Ives (emeritus), and Clarissa F. Dillon.

At the January 2016 Annual Meeting, we were pleased to present the award to: John O. Senior.

(L-R): Roger Thorne and Society President Michael Morrison
with 2016 award recipient Vice-President John O. Senior
Society President Michael Morrison with 2012 award recipients
(L-R):Joyce Post, Morrison, Herb Fry, Sue Andrews
Society Vice-President John O. Senior with 2014 award recipient Roger Thorne and President Michael Morrison
(L-R): Roger Thorne (on behalf of Mary Roberson Ives), Herb Fry (on behalf of Barbara Fry), President Michael Morrison, and Clarissa Dillon
receive the 2015 awards


Society Elects New President

At the January 2012 Annual Meeting, the Society elected Michael Morrison as its new president. Michael takes over from Roger Thorne who served as president for nine years, leading the Society through a period of remarkable change and growth, including the transition to a 501(c)(3) organization. Roger will remain active as Board of Directors Chair with our thanks and appreciation for his vision and dedication.

Michael is a published historian who has led the Archives Committee for several years, and his passion for history and great enthusiasm for the Society will help us to continue to grow and develop.

Michael Morrison and Roger Thorne



The Society Supports 2015 Paoli Blues Fest

2015 Paoli Blues Fest artwork by Dane Tilghman
(L-R): John O. Senior, Loyd Pakradooni, and Nancy Kimmons
staffed the TEHS exhibit at the 2013 Paoli Blues Fest.
Photo by Pete Bannan, Main Line Media News

On Saturday, 3 October 2015 the Society will participate as an exhibitor for the fifth consecutive year in the seven-year history of the Paoli Blues Fest. We are hoping for good weather and a great turnout like last year. We will have a number of TEHS volunteers on hand to staff the booth and talk with visitors.

The ten-by-ten foot exhibit tent will be located at booth position #105, near the entrance to TJ's. Last year, the steady stream of visitors who visited the tent throughout the day were fascinated by the diverse collection of historic photographs on display, and enjoyed having the opportunity to both learn about and share their knowledge of local history.

Exhibiting at this community event is a wonderful way to introduce the Society to a new and wider audience, as well as to connect with many friends who stop by to chat. If you are interested in the enjoyable work of helping to staff the booth next year, please contact the Society by email or speak to one of us at a Society meeting.

Information about our Blues Fest participation in previous years can be found here: 2011, 2012, 2013, and 2014.

2013 TEHS booth layout

Visitors at TEHS booth

Photos Courtesy John O. Senior



State Support for the Society

Andy Dinniman and Roger Thorne
Photo courtesy John O. Senior

At our June 2011 special meeting at Historic Waynesborough, we were pleased to once again welcome State Senator Andy Dinniman, this time to present the Society with a special state proclamation recognizing seventy-five years of exceptional community service.

Roger Thorne also expressed our appreciation for the support that Sen. Dinniman provided in helping us to obtain the recently concluded 2009 DCNR grant that funded several important projects, including the acquisition of new aerial photos of the region, other selected historical photographs, and a noteworthy collection of recorded and transcribed oral histories.

Andy reading the proclamation
Photo courtesy John O. Senior

At the September 2009 meeting, we were pleased to welcome State Senator Andy Dinniman and former State Representative Carole Rubley to recognize them for their valuable assistance in helping the Society to receive two DCED grants that have supported our Digitization Project.

Senator Dinniman presented us with a check for a new DCNR grant to support several important projects.

Roger Thorne with Andy Dinniman
Photo courtesy John O. Senior


2006 Kirkner Essay Contest Awards

At the October 2006 meeting, prizes and commemorative
plaques were awarded to the four winners of the
The 2006 Mildred Kirkner Memorial Essay Contest.
For more information, click here.

Page last updated: 2016-04-25 at 10:30 EDT
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