Sunday, March 5, 2023

The Great Commoner, Spring 2023, No. 46,

 Thaddeus Stevens Society to meet on April 7 in Lancaster, PA

The Thaddeus Stevens Society will meet on Friday, April 7, in Lancaster, during the dinner after the annual graveside ceremony. The graveside ceremony will be at 4:30 p.m. at Stevens grave in the Shreiner-Concord Cemetery at Chestnut and Mulberry Streets in Lancaster, PA. Then at 6 p.m. the Stevens Day Dinner will be held at the Stevens College at 750 E. King Street. If you plan to attend, please email or call 717-347-8159.

The dinner is free due to the generosity of John Lovell, a member in California who is paying for the dinner.

Thaddeus Stevens is star at new Adams County museum

The Adams County Historical Society museum in Gettysburg is opening on April 15 and Thaddeus Stevens is a big star.

The Thaddeus Stevens Society made a $3,000 donation in January to support the facility. The multi-million dollar facility at 625 Biglerville Road in Gettysburg has galleries with exhibits stretching from prehistoric times to the present days.  There is even a Disney type room that provides a visceral experience of what it would be like when the Confederates invaded Gettysburg, complete with the rumble and flashes of artillery explosions.

Thaddeus Stevens has his own glass case which tells about his time in Gettysburg from 1816 to 1842 before moving to Lancaster, PA. Included in the case is a chair from his house, books, an oil lamp and the gavel that he used as a local school director. In another case there is a stove made at the Maria iron furnace in Fairfield, which he owned with other investors from 1826 to 1837. In the museum’s gift shop there are Stevens biographies along with postcards and refrigerator magnets with Stevens's image. 

You can attend the opening festivities by clicking this link:  Adams County Museum

           Ross Hetrick, portraying Stevens, presents Adams County Museum Historian Tim               Smith with $3,000 for new museum.

Banner outside the museum with Stevens peeking out.

Entrance to the new Adams County museum.

The Thaddeus Stevens exhibit at the museum

Stove made at Stevens's Maria Furnace near Fairfield, PA

Both Stevens refrigerator magnets and postcards are sold at the museum

Burning of Caledonia reenactment 

planned for late June.

June 26, 2023 will mark the 160th anniversary of the burning by Confederates  of Thaddeus Stevens’s Caledonia iron furnace near Chambersburg, PA and the Stevens Society along with Caledonia State Park and the Franklin County Visitors Bureau are planning a reenactment of the event. If you would like to help stage this event, please contact the Society at or call 717-347-8159. A date for the reenactment is yet to be determined.

The destruction of the iron mill by Confederate General Jubal Early was the largest civilian financial loss of the Gettysburg campaign, costing Stevens $75,000 in the currency of the day. But despite this devastating loss, Stevens was able to continue to pay the 250 workers at the facility as he rebuilt the iron mill. 

We hope to recapture all the drama and tragedy connected to this important event in the Civil War.

Stevens/Smith project slated for completion in         late 2024 or early 2025

The Thaddeus Stevens & Lydia Hamilton Smith Center for History and Democracy is slated to be completed in late 2024 or early 2025, according to LancasterHistory, the group managing the project. So far $12 million has been raised by the historic group of a needed $20 million. 

Stevens’s house in Lancaster was saved from destruction in 2000 by the Historic Preservation Trust of Lancaster County, which was able to restore the exterior of the house to its 1860 appearance. But because of financial problems, the project was turned over to LancasterHistory in 2010, which has delayed completion due to other projects.

The Thaddeus Stevens Society has urged LancasterHistory to devote more than half of the facility to Stevens’s legislative achievements, which include the 14th Amendment to the Constitution.

No comments:

Post a Comment