Rehabbing the Hudson Valley’s First Suspension Bridge


Wednesday, June 7, 2023 Time:  6-7pm

Join us to hear from engineer Blaise Blabac, who is involved in preserving a Roebling suspension bridge in Kingston, NY.

Blaise will tell us about the big project to polish this hidden gem– with a new deck, guide rails, sidewalks, railings, and suspender cables, it is getting more than just a makeov

Register here:

High Water: An Informal History of Flooding in Philadelphia

a lecture by Adam Levine

When a city is built along a river—and Philadelphia is wedged between two, the Schuylkill and the Delaware—floods are an inevitable occurrence, with sometimes tragic consequences. In this illustrated talk, environmental historian Adam Levine will talk about some of the worst floods ever to hit Philadelphia, beginning in the early 1800s and ending up with Hurricane Ida in 2021. He will also discuss the causes of different types of flooding that occur in urban areas, and what we can do to help mitigate future floods.

Levine has been delving into the history of Philadelphia’s rivers, streams, and water supply and drainage systems since 1998, as a consultant to the Philadelphia Water Department and as webmaster of His talks are always illuminating, and this one will include rarely-seen pictures, maps, and stories that he has uncovered in his years 25 years of research.

Adam Levine’s presentation kicks off SUBMERGED: A Changing Global Climate a special exhibition theme centered on flooding and Global Climate Change. The exhibition is directed by Karen Young for the Fairmount Water Works and curated by Thom Duffy. The exhibition’s purpose is to bring focus to historic and current extreme weather events impacting our region and the Planet’s struggle for survival. The show opens on EARTH DAY! Saturday, April 22, 2023 and closes July 29, 2023

The exhibition is brought to you in part by Fund for the Water Works and the Ed F. Grusheski Water Literacy Foundation.

VENUE: Venice Island
ADDRESS: 7 Lock Street, Phila., PA 19127

There are two entrances to Venice Island, which is parallel to Main Street in Manayunk. One entrance is at Lock St. and Main Street and another entrance is at Cotton St. and Main Street. Kiosk parking is available on the island.

DATE: Tuesday April 18, 2023

The event is free but registration is required:


Steamboats on the Upper Delaware River

Tuesday, March 21st at 7:00 pm

a Zoom presentation

A Virtual Illustrated Presentation By Paul W. Schopp

A Delaware River Heritage Lecture Sponsored by the Delaware River Greenway Partnership (DRGP)

Please click here to register at the DRGP’s website.

The Upper Delaware River, extending from Market Street, Philadelphia, to the head of navigation at Trenton, once hosted a lively steamboat trade beginning with John Fitch’s experimental boats. Paul Schopp’s presentation will briefly cover the history of steamboats on this section of the river and then take viewers on an imaginary excursion up the Delaware from Philadelphia using rare postcard images and artwork, advertising, and period photographs. Viewers will learn about some of the ferry services offered to the traveling public as well as examine steam traffic on tributaries like the Pennsauken and Rancocas creeks. Riverfront amusement parks will be included in the presentation as well as some of the freight wharves and piers. Viewers will meet some of the masters who skippered the steamers. The presentation will conclude with a discussion of the end of steamboat service and what happened to the last few boats.

Can Easter be Far Behind?

Zitner’s, the Philadelphia candy company known for their signature chocolate-covered eggs, turns 100 this year, and it’s still churning out ovoidal confections filled with coconut, buttercream, peanut butter, and its signature “Butter Krak” concoction.

The local treats were born when a couple, Sam and Anne Zitner, began making and selling candy eggs at their home in the 1920s, before operationalizing their business a few years later. The business isn’t in the family anymore, but it’s been based out of the same North Philadelphia factory for around 80 years, according to current owner Evan Prochniak.

Article in Billy Penn at NPR newsletter post
by Asha Prihar
April 15, 2022

Oliver Evans chapter members toured the Zitner Factory in 2002.

Typewriters, Typewriters, Typewriters

Bryan Kravitz, a friend of Joel Spivak’s,  is passionate about typewriters. He has established a workshop with machines and tools for restoring them. Shortly you will see a notice here about a tour of his workshop on March 11, 2023.

Bryan was tapped by the Literature Department at Parkway Central Library to present an 8 part series entitled “The Typewriter in the Workplace.”
Unfortunately, unknown to us, the first program was presented in November. Here is the information on the program and the schedule for the rest of the series.

Join the Literature Department and Philly Typewriter for this 8-part typewriter series. Bryan Kravitz will share applications of the typewriter and how the machine changed industries for women, the railroad and more.
The program will take place onsite in the Heim Center. You must enter through the Wood Street entrance at the back of the library. There is usually metered street parking around the library and a paid parking lot at back with the entrance on Callowhill Street. This program is free. 

Please register at 

From the 19th-century prototypes to the IBM Selectric, Philly Typewriter specializes in the restoration and preservation of typewriters. Our focus is to mechanically restore each machine using our fifty years of experience while performing museum-level aesthetic restorations. Every typewriter is backed by our two-year warranty and annual tune-up service programs for home and business. We are the founders of The Philadelphia Public Typewriter Program, which places typewriters throughout our community into schools, libraries, bookstores and many locations free of charge, enabling people to once again have access to these mechanical marvels. Come visit our two thousand square foot location in South Philadelphia and see our workshop, meet our apprentices learning the trade, sign-up for a repair class or take in our exhibits and writers’ lounge. Whether you’re searching for a place to bring your typewriter back to life or looking to buy your first machine, we are proud to say that you needn’t look any further than Philly Typewriter.

Wed, February 15, 2023 5:30 p.m.
The Typewriter in the Workplace
Bryan Kravitz will share applications of the typewriter and how the machine changed industries for women, the railroad and more.

Wed, March 15, 2023 5:30 p.m.
Innovations & Standardization of the Typewriter
Bryan Kravitz will discuss the QWERTY keyboard to Magic Margins, a look at the evolution of the Typewriter & its functional staying power.

Wed, April 19, 2023 5:30 p.m.
The Personal life of the Typewriter
Exploring how the Typewriter found its home in the lives of artists, musicians and in our homes.

Wed, May 17, 2023 5:30 p.m.
IBM & The Rise of the Selectric
Learn how IBM and their “Mechanical Computer” became the secretarial standard.

Wed, June 21, 2023 5:30 p.m.
The Typewriter Revolution of Today
Bryan Kravitz will share why the Typewriter is experiencing it’s Renaissance, and the figures who are leading the charge.

Wed, August 16, 2023 5:30 p.m.
Philly Typewriter: The Age of Restoration & Preservation
Bryan Kravitz discusses the organization, Philly Typewriter, and how they are helping lead the world in the resurgence of the mechanical typewriter.

Finding Conshohocken

UPCOMING TALK by Ned Drinker, local Navigator:

DESCRIPTION: “Finding Conshohocken” is a two-hour slide show exploration of the history of Conshohocken from William Penn to the present including the Schuylkill Navigation, iron and steel, J Ellwood Lee, Woodmont and redevelopment.

WHEN: Monday, January 30th 5:30 – 7:30 PM

WHERE: Conshohocken Free Library, Community Room (downstairs), 301 Fayette St, Conshohocken, PA, 19428

Parking is on the street. However, the PNC bank lot behind the library may be available after bank hours.

In Person FREE!

Pennsylvania and the Potato Chip

An interesting piece from the online site Atlas Obscura. Accuracy not assured.

“Hanover, and a few counties surrounding it, is the biggest producer of America’s favorite guilty pleasures. More potato chips (and pretzels, candy, ice cream, and chocolate) are produced over these few counties than anywhere else on Earth.”

The Campbell Soup Company

Princeton Preservation Group


The Campbell Soup Company Corporate Archives: Preserving the History of an American Food Brand

November 15, 2022, 7pm via Zoom by Scott Hearn

The business that would become Campbell Soup Company was founded in 1869 in Camden, NJ as a cannery. The invention of condensed soup in 1897 fundamentally changed the trajectory of the business and how American consumers purchased and enjoyed soup. The goal of the corporate archives is to protect, preserve, and internally leverage our historic holdings across all brands. The current archival collection contains around 10,000 items of various mediums. To fully understand the scope of the collections, Corporate Archivist Scott Hearn will explore the early history of Campbell covering 1869 to 1922, followed by an examination of the challenges of working in a private archive and the preservation of such a diverse collection of artifacts.

Scott Hearn is the Corporate Archivist for the Campbell Soup Company. Scott earned his B.A. in History and M.A. in Public History from Rutgers-Camden. Before working at Campbell, Scott worked for the Encyclopedia of Greater Philadelphia,, and the Philadelphia City Archives. Scott began working at Campbell in 2018 as the Assistant Corporate Archivist and became the Corporate Archivist in 2021.  He oversees the archival collection of the Campbell Soup Company and all of the associated brands. 


New Jersey’s Raritan River Rail Road

Membership Meeting of the
Tri-state Railway Historical Society


A Zoom talk by Tom Reynolds
Thursday, November 10, 2022

For the November show, Tom Reynolds returns to continue his history of New Jersey’s Raritan River Rail Road. The story picks up the railroad’s peak freight tonnages in World War I, its lean years during the Great Depression, and proceeds through boom times during the war effort years of World War II. The history will be rounded out by the railroad’s last three decades as a vibrant short line and its eventual assimilation into Conrail in 1980.

The membership portion of the meeting begins on Zoom at 7:00 PM. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar. The presentation will continue on Zoom and be simulcast on our Facebook page after. All are welcome to attend!

Click here to register for the webinar meeting:

Philadelphia Wastewater Treatment Plant Virtual Tour

Presented by Environmental Engineer, Drew Brown

Thu, November 10, 2022, 10:00 AM – 11:30 AM EST

Our virtual tour will take virtual visitors behind the scenes at the City’s Southeast Water Pollution Control Plant to follow polluted wastewater step by step through the treatment plant until the cleaned wastewater is cleaner than the Delaware River itself and can be discharged safely to it.

Philadelphia’s sewers and the City’s three water pollution control plants, including its award-winning Southeast Plant – all repaired, rebuilt, and/or expanded under the Clean Water Act – have played a major role in making the region’s streams, small and large, cleaner from the City’s northern limits to the mouth of the Delaware Bay. These streams 50 years ago were: polluted with sewage, industrial waste, and trash; unfit for recreation; unhealthy for habitation by aquatic wildlife; and, barely useable as potable water supply. Today, 50 years after passage of the Clean Water Act, the region’s streams are valued by the public for their abundant natural resources, for the many recreational opportunities they offer, and as the source of drinking water that is potable and tastes good.

There is also a video presentation available to watch by Adam Levine, Water Department Historian.
River Rebirth, a History: Why Our Rivers Needed Cleaning Up