Meetings are held
at 7:00 P.M. at the Ephrata Public Library, 550 S. Reading Road, Ephrata unless
otherwise stated. Open free to the public.
(In case of inclement weather, Society programs will follow
the Ephrata School District closing schedule.)
August 24, Historic Schaefferstown
Diane Wenger and Jan Taylor will
discuss Schaefferstown, founded in 1754. The town was once a bustling market
center with hotels, mansions, cigar factories, and a whiskey distillery. Today
the historic architectures remains, with tales of former days. There will be a
book signing for the Schafferstown book by these two authors.
September 28 No Meeting
Join us on the front lawn of the
Society's headquarters to view the Ephrata Fair Parade and enjoy hot dogs at the
Society's food stand.
October 26, Pennsylvania Dutch Hex
Patrick Donmoyer, author and lecturer
from Kutztown, will present his research about this important part of
Pennsylvania German folklore. Patrick will have a newly published book
available for signing at the end of the talk.
9:30 A.M. to 6:00
Saturday 8:30 A.M. -
The Theodore R. Sprecher Museum Hours
Saturday, 10:00 A.
M. to 4:00 P.M.
Other times by
appointment with a 24 hour notice
Free to the public.
civic group tours can be arranged.
Come on in and pull up a chair. Whether you are a
newcomer or an old timer you can get to know us and experience our rich
heritage. The Society was founded in 1957. There is so much to see and learn
about the Cocalico Valley. Visit the
Theodore R. Sprecher Museum
housed in the Connell Mansion in it's Victorian elegance. You will find
thirteen rooms of exhibits with collections from the early 1800's to present
and period room settings. Be sure to see the current feature exhibit. Quite
possibly you may want to do some
research in the library
with its wealth of local history and genealogy. Resource materials range
widely from the standard body of legal and church records to the specific
and unique resources focused on the Cocalico Valley. To get a glimpse of the
collections you can view an
online card catalog which includes files
through the year 2000. Current files can be perused in the library. You have
heard our story, maybe you have one too.
We would love to hear
237- 249 West Main Street
Ephrata, corner of Oak St.
HSCV 2016 Picture Book Press Release
Click here for flyer: “Then
and Now, A View of EphrataBorough Through the Decades, 1891-2016”
by Clarence E. Spohn
New Historic Picture Book
of Ephrata Announced
The Historical Society of the Cocalico Valley is pleased
to announce the publication of “Then and Now, A View of Ephrata Borough
Through the Decades, 1891-2016,” by Ephrata historian and former mayor
Clarence E. Spohn. The book is being published to commemorate the
quasquicentennial or 125th
anniversary of the
incorporation of the Borough of Ephrata in 1891. The hardbound picture
book will be printed in a limited edition of 800 copies and will contain
224 pages and 447 photographs. The book’s laminated cover with feature a
sepia toned photograph of a rare stereopticon view of East Main Street
looking east from the roof of the Mt. Vernon Inne located on the
southeast corner of the square. The view, which dates from 1867, is the
oldest known photographic image of the town and features the Ephrata Mt.
Springs Hotel perched on the hillside overlooking the town.
In the Historical Society’s earlier
publications is has been its practice to published early photographs of
the town accompanied by the street address and a brief description of
the site. Realizing a change in demographics within the Ephrata
community the format of this book will deviate from those previously
published. In most instances multiple photographs are included that will
show the building or location during the late 19th
or early 20th centuries accompanied by a view of the same building or
location during the last half of the 20th century or the 21st
century. This comparison concept
enables the reader to see the building or site as it once appeared along
with its appearance in more recent years. A detailed history of each
building or site is included which will provide insight into its
ownership and occupants through the decades. For example for 124-128
East Main Street, a photograph of the Mohler/Herchelroth home built in
1883 will appear, along with a photograph of the Main Theatre built in
1938, and a 1999 photograph of the Brossman Building, which now occupies
the site. The book is designed to stir old memories for long-time
residents, and, at the same time, provide a fascinating insight into the
history of the borough’s buildings and sites for our younger generation,
as well as those residents who have moved to the town in more recent
The focus of the book’s contents is
primarily confined to buildings and sites located within
the boundaries of the Borough at the time of its
incorporation. The tour through the town begins
at Trinity Lutheran Church, continues down the south side
of Main St. to the Cocalico Creek,
continues up the north side of Main St., and ends at the
site of the former Mt. Springs Hotel. Along the way side trips address
buildings that stand or stood along Lake, Gross, State, Franklin, Oak,
Pine, and Locust Streets and Washington Ave., etc. Included at the back
of the book will be found a collection of views of the Ephrata Community
Hospital, Grater Memorial Park, the Ephrata Fair, and Christmas in the
Downtown through the years.
If you love to reminisce this volume is
guaranteed to bring back many fond memories of days gone by — a bustling
downtown filled with shoppers, the many factories that employed the
town’s residents, the community Christmas tree and Santa’s house at the
railroad station, and the pony rides and the iconic twin Ferris wheels
at the Ephrata Fair. The days of the Roxy and Main Theaters, Sears
Roebuck, J. J. Newberry’s, Harris’ Department Store, E. L. Snyder’s
appliance store, Givler’s Grocery, and the Acme on E. Main St., as well
as Carter’s, Cox’s and Royer’s Drug Stores. Included are the town’s
early hotels, its school buildings, the Clare Point Race Track — the
list goes on and on.
The book will sell for $25.00.
Pre-publication orders are currently being taken; books will be
available for pick-up in mid-to-late November, at the Historical
Society’s library, 237 W. Main St., Ephrata. Don’t delay and order now,
only 800 copies are available, the book will not be reprinted. The book
would make an excellent Christmas present for both family and friends.
Click on the link below for a clip-out order form
“Then and Now,
A View of EphrataBorough Through the Decades, 1891-2016”
by Clarence E.
Exhibit Commemorates 125 Years of Ephrata Borough
The Historical Society
current exhibit is “125 Years of Ephrata Borough,
1891-2016,” commemorating the 125th anniversary
of the incorporation of the Borough of Ephrata. The exhibit was curated by former
Ephrata Mayor Clarence E. Spohn, and is cosponsored by Ephrata Borough
and the Ephrata National Bank. The exhibit will continue through
Dec. 31, 2016. The Historical Society’s museum, 237 West Main St., is
open on Saturdays from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m., or by appointment. Group
visits are welcomed and encouraged, for arrangements call 717-733-1616.
Admission is free to all.