People were so eager to learn about history that they attended the 25th Schuylkill County History Fair before it even started.
Between 50 to 75 people were at the Fairlane Village mall waiting before the event’s 10 a.m. start time on Feb. 10, said Steve Young, assistant executive director of the Schuylkill County Historical Society.
About 15 people were at the historical society exhibit, with half of them buying merchandise before 10 a.m., he said.
Pottsville Maroons items, including sweatshirts, were for sale. Next year marks the 100th anniversary of the team’s 1925 championship season. However, an unsanctioned postseason game in Philadelphia led to the Pottsville team’s championship being revoked by the NFL.
“This has been the best turnout I’ve ever seen,” society Executive Director Diana Prosymchak said of the fair.
She believes the nice weather and promotion of the event helped attendance numbers. In all, 30 vendors were at the event, displaying goods on more than 70 tables.
The Mount Carmel Area Historical Society had information there for the first time, as well as the Ancient Order of the Hibernians JFK Div. No. 2 of Pottsville.
David Berezovske, president of the Mount Carmel society, said he contacted the Schuylkill County society about attending.
“It’s been a really good experience,” he said.
Photos, a newspaper and other items were on display.
Nancy Terry, 81, of Ringtown, was paging through a book about population in the British Isles, one of numerous books for sale from the historical society. Her family is originally from Scotland.
“History is always interesting” because we learn from it, she said.
Ann Wood, 63, of Branchdale, was at a table and perusing goods brought by Richard Nagle, who lives in North Manheim Township and has a website devoted to Schuylkill Haven history. Old photographs and memorabilia were on display.
Wood says she had been attending since 2004 because she loves history.
“If you don’t know where you’ve been, you don’t know where you’re going,” she said.
This is Nagle’s 15th time at the fair as a vendor. He’s been collecting for 40 years, with some people gifting him historical pieces. The man browsing Nagle’s table gave him a newspaper clipping of a crash involving someone he knew.
“Sometimes, I learn things I don’t know,” Nagle said.
Dale Freudenberger, president of the Tamaqua Historical Society, said foot traffic was indeed strong. Photos are of special interest to visitors.
“A photograph is worth a thousand words,” he said.
Attending the fair gives members of the historical society and other organizations a chance to network as well as share a love of history and what each one is doing, he said.
Jim Klock, treasurer and curator of the Ashland Historical Society, which has been at the fair for 24 years, agreed that attendance was good.
“I’m happy there’s more interest in history,” he said.
Source: Berkshire mont