The Historical Society of Frankford (HSoF) will present its September program, live-streamed on Facebook and YouTube, at 7:30 pm on September 14, 2021.
John Buffington will discuss some of the current activities at HSoF, and then read a paper, “The History of the Dummy Car,” by Thomas Creighton, first delivered to the Society on January 28, 1916. Dummy cars were self-propelled, powered by steam engines, and they replaced horse-drawn street cars for transportation between Frankford and Philadelphia in 1863. They served that purpose until they were replaced by electric trolleys in 1893. Thomas Creighton had first-hand recollections of the dummy cars in operation, and also collected stories from the operators.
This program will remain available as a video on both Facebook and YouTube indefinitely.
Diane passed away on August 12th. She was a noted local historian and Director and Curator at the Historical Society of Frankford.
We were heartbroken to find out that our beloved Diane Sadler passed away. She was a joy to work with in our film and was a true historian. In her honor, we have put together a short In Memoriam of a clip that was never released. It shows her love for history, her humor, and what a beautiful human being she was. She will be missed by many people. Our thoughts and prayers go out to her family and friends, and may she rest in peace. Jason Sherman, filmmaker, The King’s Highway
Local history activist John Buffington commented, ‘No one has ever been as devoted for as long or as diligently to Frankford history as Diane Sadler. She was an inspiration to us, and we will keep at it. But Diane will be sorely missed.’
Services will be held at Emmanuel Resurrection Episcopal Church, 8201 Frankford Ave., Philadelphia, PA 19136 on Tuesday, August 24th at 11:00 A.M. Church will be open for Viewing and Greetings at 10:00 A.M. No flowers please. Donations can be made in Diane’s name to The Historical Society of Frankford, P.O. Box 4888, Philadelphia, PA 19124. .
For our May meeting, presented via live stream on Facebook and YouTube on May 11 at 7:30 pm, John Buffington will talk about the history of Frankford Arsenal, a National Historic Register site, which also has 9 buildings specifically listed on the Philadelphia Historic Register, from the near-disaster of American military inadequacy in the War of 1812, through base closure in 1971 and privatization in 1977, to current status, threats, and opportunities.
As always, we invite you to comment and post questions in either platform’s comment section, however this time we will do something a little different. At the close we will invite viewers to post questions and comments to be addressed live about the potential for the Historical Society of Frankford to intervene more aggressively in situations like the current lamentable state of Buildings 2 and 3 at the Arsenal. So please stay tuned to the end, especially if you think that we aren’t doing enough on preservation emergencies.
Find it on their Facebook page or follow this link to YouTube: link
The HSF held their annual holiday meeting online due to the unfortunate COVID situation we are all living through.
The historical subject of the program was a presentation by Philadelphia author Allen Hornblum on his most recent book about the story of Holmesburg Prison inmates who were baked alive in their punishment cells in 1938. A bit heavy for the Christmas season but very interesting.
Dark Run University- a presentation of papers read from 1951 on Facebook Live
Speaker: Vanessa Couvreur
In June we presented our first ever virtual lecture via Facebook Live with a piece entitled “Swimmin’ Holes I know”.
In that paper, writer W. Hepworth mentions Dark Run University saying, “It ain’t any college- Just where the gang spends a lotta time an has plenty of fun”. In this follow up piece we’ll explore what Dark Run University was in the 1890’s and the area around it.