Sunday, June 30, 2013

Historical News and Notes: Changes in Brokerage Houses

The following notice appeared in the June 30, 1919 Evening Public Ledger:

Townsend Whelen & Co. announce the retirement of J. Hunter Ewing and the entrance into the firm of J.E. Cope Morton and John Strawbridge. The members of the firm are William B. Whelen, T. Duncan Whelen, Thomas L. Ehoyn, J.E. Cope Morton and John Strawbridge. The firm of J. & W. Strawbridge has been dissolved owing to the retirement of Welsh Strawbridge. Towsend Whelen & Co. take over the business of J. & W. Strawbridge.

John Strawbridge was Welsh's brother and business partner.

The Library of Congress has made historic newspapers dating from 1836-1922 available through their Chronicling America series.

Friday, June 28, 2013

The Graeme Park Celtic Weekend: Let the Shopping Begin!

In just four weeks (July 20-21) we'll be getting our Celtic on with the Glengarry Bhoys, Seamus Kennedy, Blackwater, Irish Thunder, the Celtic Martins, Carl Peterson, Melinda Crawford, Highland athletics, the Irish sports of hurling/camogie and Gaelic rules football, border collie demos, and tons more entertainment (for the full schedule, see our post here).

In addition to the entertainment, there will be lots of shopping to do, sponsor booths to check out, and clans and non-profits to meet up with. As of today, here's what's in store for you in that department.

Celtic Sponsors


Bath Fitter—Simple, fast, cost-effective solutions to update your old bathroom.

Granite Transformations—Easy installation over existing counters and backsplashes without the time and mess of demolition.

Gutter Helmet—Never clean your gutters again with Gutter Helmet’s unique system.


Kitchen Magic—Design, manufacture and installation of new kitchen cabinets or refacing of the old. Countertops and accessories too.

Kitchen Saver—Custom kitchen cabinet renewal and refacing. Hardware, interior organizing components.


Celtic Vendors

Blackthorn Stick—Sterling silver, gold-filled, and brass Celtic jewelry (handmade and commercial), wood-burned bread boards, Celtic plaques, crochet work.

Celtic Tides - Packaged food and grocery items, family name histories and crests.


Diane DiMaggio—Adult and children’s aprons, table runners, napkins, BYOB bags, tea wallets, walker bags, decorated baby onsies, baby bundles, and painted wine glasses in Celtic designs.

Dopey Dragon Dry Goods—Stuff to make other stuff: beads, buttons, feathers, leather, yard goods, Celtic-themed textiles, hats, beadwork, notions.


Irish Hooks & Yarn—Hand-crocheted items for babies, children, teens and adults.

Iron Wolf Traders—Cast iron d├ęcor, including Celtic crosses, garden plaques of Celtic gods & goddesses and greenmen, handmade leather journals, bags & wristlets, toile porcelain teapots, hand-batiked flags & tops, walking canes, Celtic prints.


John Troy Irish Shirts - Irish-themed sweatshirts, t-shirts, golf shirts, baseball caps for adults and kids.

Just Peachy Jewels—Sterling silver and hand-beaded jewelry in Celtic designs.


Pitter Patterns—Celtic print toddler aprons, seat belt covers, baby blankets, burp cloths, tutus, headbands, decorated onsies, baby bloomers, leg warmers, chocolate covered chips & pretzels, party services.

RedEarthWorks—Sgraffito redware pottery in Celtic designs.


Reflections of Ireland—Soccer & rugby shirts, Celtic jackets, caps, Celtic jewelry, throws, capes, kilts, gift and novelty items.

R.E. Piland—Original Celtic jewelry in sterling silver and 14kt gold with precious and semi-precious stones. All items handmade in Haymarket, VA.


St. Kilda USA—Traditional Scottish Highlandwear, kilts, jackets, t-shirts, scarves, ties, and capes.

WizardsTower Beads & Gifts—Hand-carved wooden spoons, magic wands, capes, ritual stoles, shawls, altar cloths, scarves, bags, original sterling silver, gold, and copper jewelry. Unique line of Celtic/Wiccan/Pagan jewelry.


Zoll Framing & Gifts—Irish & Scottish art, Celtic lettering, totes, duffle bags, jewelry.


Craft & Other Vendors

Claire Adele Designs—Original handcrafted jewelry designs using gemstone and glass beads. Necklaces, bracelets, earrings.

Custom Bead Designs—Custom bead bracelets made with large hole beads and charms.

Kathy’s Kanine Kreations—Homemade dog treats.

Scentsy—Scentsy wickless electric warmers, waxes and sprays.

Steven Fine—Tagua nut (vegetable ivory) jewelry and figurines. Hand-knitted & crocheted scarves and shawls. Selection of handmade Alpaca animals.


Tastefully Simple—Tastefully Simple beer bread, garlic, spices and mixes.

Clans & Associations

Clan Donald


Clan Irwin -


Clan MacAlister Society, Ltd—Clan crest shirts, mugs, tote bags.


Cornish American Heritage Society & Pennsylvania Cornwall Assoc.












Monday, June 17, 2013

Historical News and Notes: Balloon Up 17,050 Feet - Banker and Doctors Ascend in the Philadelphia II


Image from HERE

The following appeared in the June 17, 1910 New York Tribune:

Philadelphia, June 16 - A new altitude record for this state was made to-day by the balloon Philadelphia II, with Dr. Thomas E. Eldridge, Dr. George H. Simmerman and Welsh Strawbridge, a well known banker, in the basket. A height of 17,050 feet was attained. The former record was 15,600 feet, made by the Ben Franklin two years ago.

The ascension was made from this city shortly after 9 o'clock this morning. The landing occured at Petersville, Northampton County sixty miles distant, at 11:35 o'clock. The airship dropped 17,000 feet in eighteen minutes.

The world's record for altitude is 10,500 metres (34,448 feet), held by Berson and Luerin. The American record is 24,200 feet made by Clifford B. Harmon and Augustus Post last October.

Welsh Strawbridge, along with his wife Margaret, purchased Graeme Park in 1920 and donated it to the state of Pennsylvania in 1958.

The Library of Congress has made historic newspapers dating from 1836-1922 available through their Chronicling America Series.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

2013 Graeme Park Celtic Weekend: Entertainment Schedule



Can you believe our Celtic Festival is just six short weeks away? Not only that, but for the first time we're bringing you a full weekend's worth of entertainment and we've pulled out all the stops, increased our entertainment budget, hired bigger name acts, brought back old favorites, and continuing along the lines of last year are including Highland athletics and border collie demos again this year.

We have two main staging areas this year - the "Festival Tent" (aka the big Open Aire Affairs wedding tent), which is rain proof and will provide seating and some tables for visitors who would like to enjoy a pint or their lunch while watching the entertainment, and the "Keith House Stage" which is the shady lawn behind the Keith House. There are some picnic tables by the house, but visitors may want to bring their own chairs or blankets to enjoy the entertainment in this area. In addition to the two main venues, we'll be making use of other areas of the property for Highland games, sheep herding, kids' activities, living history demonstrations, and workshops. Of course things are still evolving and being finalized, but as it stands, here is the line-up of entertainment we have scheduled, times subject to change of course, but days should remain the same. Plan to make a day or a weekend of it so you're sure to see everything we have to offer.

July 20 - 10 am - 7 pm

10:30 – Flag Raising Ceremony with Bucks Caledonia and MacGregor Pipe & Drum Bands
11:00 – Timoney Irish Dancers (Festival Tent)
11:45 – Carl Peterson (Festival Tent)
12:00 – Pipe & Drum Bands (Keith House Stage)
     Celtic Language Instruction (Barn Visitors’ Center)
12:30 – Timoney Irish Dancers (Festival Tent)
     Melinda Crawford (Keith House Stage)
1:00 – Raspberry Ridge Sheep Farm Border Collie Demonstrations (Field 2)
1:15 – Pipe & Drum Bands (throughout property)
2:00 – The Celtic Martins (Festival Tent)
     Carl Peterson (Keith House Stage)
     Melinda Crawford Fiddle Workshop (Keith House Parlor)
2:45 – Piper and Drum Bands (Keith House Stage)
3:00 – Timoney Irish Dancers (Festival Tent)
     Melinda Crawford (Keith House Stage)
     Border Collie Demonstrations (Field 2)
3:45 – Glengarry Bhoys (Festival Tent)
4:30 – The Celtic Martins (Keith House Stage)
4:45 – Introduction to the Haggis w/Carl Peterson (Festival Tent)
     Haggis Eating Contest (Festival Tent)
5:30 – Pipe and Drum Bands (throughout property)
6:00 - Glengarry Bhoys (Festival Tent)
Ongoing – Highland Games (Field 1), Kilted Juggler, Kilt-Making, Kids’ Activities, Living History Demos,
     Historic House Tours

July 21 - 12 noon-6 pm


12:15 – Flag Raising Ceremony with Irish Thunder
12:30 – Seamus Kennedy (Festival Tent)
     Melinda Crawford (Keith House Stage)
1:15 – Irish Thunder (Festival Tent)
1:30 – Blackwater (Keith House Stage)
1:45 – Introduction to the Haggis with Carl Peterson (Festival Tent)
     Haggis Eating Contest (Festival Tent)
     Raspberry Ridge Sheep Farm Border Collie Demonstration (Field 2)
2:15 – Seamus Kennedy Kids’ Performance (Keith House Stage)
2:30 – Glengarry Bhoys (Festival Tent)
3:00 – Ruthanne Ankney Dance Workshop (Keith House Stage)
3:15 – Melinda Crawford Fiddle Workshop (Keith House Parlor)
3:30 – Irish Thunder (Festival Tent)
3:45 – Border Collie Demonstration (Field 2)
4:00 – Seamus Kennedy (Festival Tent)
     Melinda Crawford (Keith House Stage)
4:45 – Blackwater (Festival Tent)
5:00 – Carl Peterson (Keith House Stage)
5:30 – Irish Thunder (throughout property)
Ongoing – Glenside Gaelic Club/Youth Irish Sports Club - Gaelic Football, Hurling, Camogie (Field 1)
     Kids’ Activities, Living History Demos, Historic House Tours

(*All times subject to change.)

Be sure to click the links to listen to sample music from all of our performers. If time allows, we'll be back with more details on each of the main acts.

Sunday, June 2, 2013

A Wedding at Graeme Park: Russell and Bryan

While Russell and Bryan exchanged their vows in Ireland back in December, they chose a warm June night to celebrate with family and friends at Graeme Park. Forgoing all of the usual reception protocol (the toasts, the dances, etc.) they held an elegant dinner party where the focus was the fabulous food and flowers.

A cocktail hour, with live music, was held in the tented courtyard in front of the 19th century barn.


Guests enoyed fruit and cheese arranged on a table featuring a gorgeous floral centerpiece and various cheeses, crackers, artisan breads, nuts, and fruit, as well as hot and cold butlered hors d'oevres.


Even the wine glasses were arranged artistically behind the bar.


When guests made their way back to the tent, they were greeted with their table assignments on a central table with flowers and the couple's initials in big, stand-up letters that reflected the monograms they used on the menu cards.



Each table was dressed in classic white linens and set with white china, which allowed the floral arrangements to take on the starring role. Each table had a unique arrangement and a hand written table number held in place by a wine cork and featuring names of various wines.






The dinner was catered by Jamie Hollander of New Hope and included mixed field greens with balsamic viniagrette, wild mushroom ravioli in sage butter and cream, orange chipotle glazed pork chops over thyme and garlic potato puree, and plates of fruit, seasonal berries, assorted nut and fruit tarts and chocolate truffles for dessert.


The meal was accompanied by live, light jazz music and later followed up with more danceable numbers played via an iPod.




 Congratulations and much happiness Russell and Bryan.



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