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Secluded between Laurel Mountain and Chestnut Ridge, the Ligonier Valley has been the mountain playground of western Pennsylvania since the nineteenth century. Yet this picturesque retreat was at the tumultuous center of history--during the French and Indian War, Fort Ligonier was key to the British strategy, and in the late nineteenth century, the Ligonier Valley Rail Road helped transform the industry of the region. Author Jennifer Sopko traces the story of the valley and its residents through a series of fascinating vignettes. From the earliest histories to nostalgic reminiscences of the Ligonier Opera House, socials at the Valley Dairy ice cream parlor and bygone days at Idlewild Park, Sopko captures the history and spirit of the Ligonier Valley and its communities.
Nestled in the hills of western Pennsylvania, the Ligonier Valley has always had an air of mystery about it. The small towns and rolling countryside bear little witness to all that has occurred here. A fort was built but decayed and disappeared before being reconstructed recently. Many people have made significant contributions to the town and beyond, although time has lost many of their stories. The valley became an early industrial center with the growth of lumbering, mining, and iron production until the best resources were spent and these industries dwindled. Using hundreds of rare photographs, author Sally Shirey tells the story of this beautiful, historic area. In Ligonier Valley, readers can see the valley as it stood many years ago. After making the steep descent of Laurel Mountain, many pioneers were content to stay and build their lives in the valley. In 1758, the army of Gen. John Forbes erected Fort Ligonier. John Ramsey laid out the town of Ligonier around a public square called the Diamond. The influx of people, thanks to the Ligonier Valley Rail Road, gave rise to the hospitality industry in the valley. The Hotel Breniser, Ligonier Springs Hotel, and Kissell Springs Hotel were among those that served tourists and residents alike. Idlewild Park, dating from the 1870s, remains one of America's most beautiful amusement parks today. Reconstructed Fort Ligonier has been named to the National Register of Historic Places.
Idlewild and SoakZone has charmed people across Western Pennsylvania and beyond since the late 1800s. The park was developed by Pittsburgh's Mellon family as a picnic grove to boost traffic on the Ligonier Valley Rail Road. When C.C. Macdonald took the helm in 1931, rides, entertainment and other attractions came to Idlewild over the next half century, along with the adjacent Story Book Forest. After joining the Kennywood family of amusement parks, Idlewild added a Wild West town, Mister Rogers' Neighborhood of Make-Believe and a water slide complex. Author Jennifer Sopko tells the heartwarming history of a Pennsylvania amusement park that continues to delight generations of families.
History lies almost forgotten among the low mountains and quaint towns of Pennsylvania's Laurel Highlands. Tales of Titanic survivors, brilliant inventors and forgotten heroes are all a part of the region's dim past. Since the 1790s, the highlands have been home to a booming glass industry that spun out early windows and flasks and, later, beautifully cut pieces of art. The wonder of the World's Fair of 1893 was none other than Westmoreland's H.C. Frick Coke Co.'s replica of a modern mine. In the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, lush fields and meadows produced the country's finest whiskey, Monongahela Rye. Author Cassandra Vivian travels off the beaten path to explore the hidden history of the Laurel Highlands.
Generally individuals in history are known for a particular reason - they somehow influenced history. Very little is known about the ordinary person who lived in the past. But historical archaeologists - through their interpretation of the material culture and historic record - can study the past on an individual level. This brings archaeological interpretation from a micro to a macro level - as opposed to the traditional level of society to community to individual interpretation. The cases presented in this volume engage material culture that is owned or used by a single person and is thus associated with an individual at some point in its uselife. The volume takes bodkins, shoes, beads, cloth, religious items, grave goods, as well as subassemblages from well-defined contexts from New England, the Chesapeake, New Orleans, Hawaii, Spanish colonial America, and London in the pursuit of the individual and the textured interpretation this analytical scale provides. This volume promises to present innovative approaches to a host of archaeological materials, drawing widely on the range of archaeological research for the historical period today. Capitalizing on several topics and research threads with great currency, such as the examination of material culture and interest in various and intersecting lines of identity construction, as well as presenting an international and multiregional approach to these topics, this volume will be of interest to archaeologists, anthropologists, material culture scholars, and social historians interested in a wide variety of time periods and subfields.
Robert Rogers (1731 – 1795) was an American frontiersman who commanded the famous Rogers Rangers in the French and Indian War.

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