Tredyffrin Easttown Historical Society
History Quarterly Digital Archives

Source: July 2002 Volume 39 Number 3, Pages 106–108

Notes and Comments

Page 106


Quarterly Resumes Publication

With this issue, the Tredyffrin Easttown History Club Quarterly resumes what we trust will be its usual stated schedule of publication dates, after having been missing from accustomed distribution channels for almost a year. Your editor simply needed to absent himself from this particular publishing routine and tend to other pressing matters. For this we offer our sincere regrets, and look forward to meeting you regularly in the future within the pages of this repository of local history.


Groundbreaking Ceremony for Paoli Battlefield Park

Paoli Battlefield preservation supporters and local dignitaries gathered at the battlefield site on April 18, 2002 to celebrate the groundbreaking for a $60,000 improvement project which will culminate with a sunset re-enactment on September 20-21, the 225th Anniversary of what was then known as "Wayne's affair," the Paoli Massacre of 53 Continental soldiers by British troops.

The 40-acre Revolutionary War battle site, still open farmland as it was in 1777, became an endangered species when its owner stated plans to sell it for development. The Paoli Battlefield Preservation

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Fund (PBPF), incorporated in 1996, succeeded in meeting the $2.5 million asking price with individual and business gifts, and county, state and federal government funding. Through the perseverance of Congressman Curt Weldon and then PBPF President Patrick McGuigan, Weldon's PATRIOT (Preserving America's Treasures of the Revolution for Independence for Our Tomorrow) Act ensuring federal funding was signed into law at the end of October 1999. The deed to the property was transferred to the Preservation Fund at settlement a week later on November 5, 1999.

The Preservation Fund plans to maintain the battlefield site much as it appeared two hundred fifty years ago, says current president Michael Steinberger. The fields will again be planted in 18th century crops, and fence lines will be reconstructed. Along a walking trail through the site, explanatory markers will be erected to interpret for visitors different aspects of the encounter.

Keynote speaker at the celebration was Arthur Stewart, Valley Forge National Historical Park superintendent. He said, "Paoli was a special word in the early days of our country in the war for independence. It ratifies the actions of those who came before us, and it heralds to those who follow us the responsibilities they have." After the groundbreaking ceremony at the battlefield, the group adjourned to nearby Historic Waynesborough, the ancestral home of General Anthony Wayne, for refreshments and a light lunch.


Century-old Structures Razed

A 19th-century Strafford house, "Glenwyth," the former William Colket farmhouse at 335 Upper Gulph Road, was demolished in July 2001 after the property was subdivided to make way for new construction. The house was a featured residence on the Town Tours and Village Walks summer program a year earlier, sponsored by the Historical and Architectural Review Board (HARB) of Tredyffrin Township.

A Tudor-style manor house at 550 South Waterloo Road, Devon, was demolished in early April 2002 to make way for ten new homes. First known as "Oaklands," the house was built in 1905 by Philadelphia insurance magnate C. Hartman Kuhn. Reportedly, it was designed by noted architect Horace Trumbauer. In 1955 it had been converted to institutional use as the Regina Mundi Priory.

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The Hardware Center marked its 50th year in business last fall. In October 1951, Cordine Scartozzi and his brother-in-law, William Di-Virgilio, acquired a hardware store in Paoli. It was relocated to the new Paoli Shopping Center in 1955, where it continues to thrive today.


A Move For Surrey

Surrey Services for Seniors, now headquartered at 28 Bridge Avenue, Berwyn, recorded two milestone events recently. In December 2000 it occupied its newly acquired and renovated building (the old "Red Cross Building"), and in September 2001 it celebrated 20 years of service to area senior citizens.


Second Annual History Club Tea

The History Club held a festive Sunday afternoon tea (Second Annual) on October 28, 2001 in the Fellowship Hall at Trinity Presbyterian Church, Berwyn. In addition to tea, attendees also enjoyed a presentation by eminent Chester County author and historian Estelle Cremers. Estelle's remarks titled "Some Thoughts on History from the Other Side of North Valley Hill" focused on Coventry Township which she is currently researching.


Club Officers

The biennial election of officers to serve for 2002-2003 took place at the February club meeting. Continuing in office will be Betty Ripka, second vice president; Anne Murdock, recording secretary; Peggy Egertson, corresponding secretary; Mildred Kirkner, treasurer. President, L. G. Skip Eichner, and first vice president, Herb Fry, retired, each having served six years in their respective offices. The Club gave them a vote of thanks for their long and valued leadership.

There being no nominees for the offices vacated by Messrs. Eichner and Fry, it was agreed to proceed for an interim period until an election can be held, with the practice of designating volunteer meeting organizers to chair the monthly meetings. Mr. Fry agreed to continue as a member of the Editorial Board of the Quarterly.


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