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March 2020

CANCELED: Votes for Women: Berks Suffrage 2020 Centennial Kick-Off Event

March 14, 2020 @ 10:00 am - 12:00 pm

To ensure the health and safety of our community, this program has been canceled. We are making arrangement to film the performance of “System Shakers and Barrier Breakers: The Suffragists” to air online at a later date. Kick off the Berks Suffrage 2020 Centennial with women’s historian, Hallie Vaughan, who will portray the influential suffragist, Alice Paul and share the history of the women’s suffrage movement. Following the program, enjoy a theatrical performance of “System Shakers and Barrier Breakers: The Suffragists,” written…

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May 2020

CANCELED: Pennsylvania Iron Masters During the Revolution

May 9, 2020 @ 10:00 am - 11:00 am
Berks History Center, 940 Centre Avenue
Reading, PA 19601 United States

Due to the extended stay at home orders, this event has been canceled. We are working to provide digital programming to replace our regularly scheduled Second Saturday programs. This particular speaker has been rescheduled for 2021. At the beginning of the Revolutionary War, Pennsylvania’s ironworks produced a large percentage of Colonial America’s iron.  The battles of Lexington and Concord were fought in the summer of 1775, and shortly thereafter Pennsylvania began to take measures for the defense of the state.  The…

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Carsonia Park: Digital Second Saturday Program

May 9, 2020 @ 10:00 am - 11:00 am

Missing BHC Second Saturday? So are we! Thanks to the help of Herbein + Co. and our friend, Paul Druzba, the Berks History Center would like to invite you to our very first digital Second Saturday program! In lieu of our canceled May Second Saturday program, we are giving this digital option a try. We hope that you will join us, as we explore this brave new world together, from the comfort our own homes! Discover the fascinating history behind…

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June 2020

CANCELED: Three Cheers and a Ringgold Tiger!  The First of the First Defenders

June 13, 2020 @ 10:00 am - 11:00 am
Berks History Center, 940 Centre Avenue
Reading, PA 19601 United States

Due to the statewide shutdown, this event has been canceled. This program will be rescheduled in 2021. Discover the stories behind the Ringgold Light Artillery before they became the preeminent light artillery company in Eastern Pennsylvania, with Civil War historian, Mark Pflum. No Tickets Required. All Second Saturday programs are “pay at the door.” $5.00 members, $8.00 non-members. Light Refreshments served at 9:30AM. Off street parking available at 160 Spring Street, Reading. All programs subject to change. Berks History Center…

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Shotgun Resistance: Digital Second Saturday Program

June 13, 2020 @ 10:00 am - 11:00 am

Please join us to discover the history of the construction of the Maidencreek Dam and  Lake Ontelaunee between 1925 and 1932. This special digital presentation will explore the crisis in Reading’s water supply that created the need for the project, the drama of the 1927 “Shotgun Rebellion” by local farmers whose land was ultimately under the new lake, plus the accompanying turmoil in Reading City Hall triggered by these events. Nothing like hearing about turmoil in City Hall to stir…

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September 2020

Deeds Not Words: Discovering Our Berks Suffragists

September 12, 2020 @ 10:00 am - 11:00 am

Discover the stories of the Berks County women who worked for the woman suffrage movement locally.  Find out how RACC Associate Dean of Library Services, Mary Ellen Heckman,  used old newspapers and local records to reveal their hard work and personal lives and learn how to use these same techniques to uncover your own ancestors' lives. Click here to register. Mary Ellen Heckman is the Associate Dean of Library Services at Reading Area Community College. Mrs. Heckman is a Phi…

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October 2020

More Than Just Mrs.: The Importance of Women in Family History

October 10, 2020 @ 10:00 am - 11:00 pm

Often people researching their family history focus on male relatives or see female ancestors as appendages to their husbands.  This presentation will discuss how researching the women in your family tree--mothers, aunts, grandmothers, etc.--can help you better understand your family's heritage.  Please join us on Saturday, October 10th at 10 AM   Click here to register for the program:  https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_vZ2bcVIHRzuuIHx2sPgd1g Dr. Karen Guenther is a native of Berks County and currently is a Professor of History at Mansfield University.  She…

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November 2020

The 18th Century Reading Amish Congregation & The Nicholas Stoltzfus Homestead

November 14, 2020 @ 10:00 am - 11:00 am
Zoom

Did you know that there were Amish in Reading back in the 1700s? Have you ever wondered what happened to them? For answers to your questions, tune in to this lecture by Nic Stoltzfus, a descendant of one of the Amish families who lived in Reading in the late 1700s. His lecture will focus on the Stoltzfus family, their immigration journey from Germany to Pennsylvania, and their move to Berks County; he will also talk about the Nicholas Stoltzfus Homestead in Wyomissing…

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December 2020

Christmas on Penn Street: A Photographic History

December 12, 2020 @ 10:00 am - 11:30 am

Take a nostalgic, virtual "walk" down Penn Street with Berks History Center Trustee and volunteer, Richard Polityka. Enjoy the images of "Old Reading" and remember Penn Street as it was on Christmas years ago with a photographic history. (Photo by Ben Hasty, courtesy of the Reading Eagle) This is a free event to attend, but please consider a donation to the Berks History Center! Make a donation by clicking here! Register here: https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_iIBB7uqKR9KyleGihd-RTQ

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January 2021

Neversink: Reading’s Other Mountain

January 9 @ 10:00 am - 11:00 am
Zoom

Local Historian Paul Druzba tells the story of the "resort years" on Neversink from 1890-1930, a time which saw the building of an eight-mile water-powered electric railway on the mountain, as well as several fantastic resort hotels and recreation areas. This is a follow-up presentation to two hikes of Neversink Mountain during the fall of 2020. Those who did not attend the hikes are welcome to attend.   This event will be hosted on Zoom. Register here: https://zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_TPe0NZLDTgqDq25DJutr1Q

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