Serving History in a Changing CB (Book)Griffith
Book Published: 15/10/2001
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The Historical Society of Pennsylvania, founded in Philadelphia in the early 1800s, has always provided a rich and varied resource for scholars, historians, and genealogists. The magnificent collections assembled there include 15 million manuscripts, 500,000 books, and 300,000 graphic works. Manuscripts range from the papers of William Penn to those of John Wanamaker, and provide a valuable historical index to the colonial and early national periods.Sally Griffith traces the history of The Historical Society from its origins as a private antiquarian club to a professional public archive. She pays particular attention to the second half of the twentieth century, which brought dramatic changes to The Society. Rising professional standards in the care of collections, increased use of its library and manuscript resources, demands for more public programs, and continuing growth of its collections -- all with no significant increase in funding, led to serious financial problems. Griffith tells the story of the personalities who engaged in the ongoing questions of service and unding, as HSP tried to balance its public responsibilities with its image as a semiprivate domain of elite Philadelphia.
Publisher: University of Pennsylvania Press