York County Heritage Trust’s Web site gives virtual look at its vast holdings, activities

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York artist Lewis Miller’s depiction of a Christmas tree is part of the York County Heritage Trust’s collection. The Trust, largest holder of Miller drawings, has just introduced a new Web Site. The Miller art pieces are the crown jewels of the Trust’s collection. Background posts: Don’t know much about York County history? Part I and The Four Bloggers write and Stack of books on York County’s Civil War past getting higher.
Looking to learn more about your house?
The York County Heritage Trust’s newly designed Web site lists resources to check out.
The site’s extensive listing of such resources starts like this: …


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William Wagner drew The National House, or National Hotel, still standing on York’s West Market Street. Charles Dickens and other luminaries stayed there. The Wagner collection is another marquee holding at the York County Heritage Trust.

• 1821 Small & Wagner York and Adams County map (reproduction available in Museum Shop
o Lists churches and mills
• 1850 Moody York Boro map (reproduction available in Museum Shop)
o Lists property owners, churches and other public buildings in York
• 1860 Lake and Shearer map of York County (reproduction available in Museum Shop)
o large canvas wall map that lists each property owner as well as mills, schools and railroads

Or maybe you’re wanting to find out more about a long-deceased relative but you live out of town and can’t get to the Trust’s library.
The site tells you how to research your ancestor and provides a form to launch the process:

The York County Heritage Trust has many of the York County newspapers on microfilm. Not every death that occurred in York County will have a corresponding obituary in the local paper. If an obituary did appear, the details included in it vary depending on the time period. Early obituaries, when found, may only reference that the individual died; or that he died “leaving a wife and children” not bothering to mention their names.
When a complete date of death is known; i.e. February 27th, 1987, we will then locate on a microfilm copy of one (1) newspaper the obituary and provide a copy for a $15.00 fee. When only the month and year is known, we will search that month of one (1) newspaper for the obituary and provide a copy of the obituary for a $25.00 fee.

Or maybe you’re a college student whose is interested in World War II Gen. George Patton and his comrade along the Rhine River to the south, York’s Gen. Jacob Loucks Devers.
A searchable database lists Patton references in the extensive Devers holdings at the Trust.
How extensive are the Devers holdings?
The site gives this summary:

The Devers Collection is the papers of WWII General Jacob Devers. They include correspondence, oral history tapes, photographs, scrapbooks and miscellaneous material placed here by General Devers There are 92 photo albums and 137 5-inch Hollinger boxes containing his papers, a total of 110 linear feet of material. An index that was created in 1992 is found next to Devers Box # 137.

I think you get an idea of how helpful the new site will be to serious researchers and hobbyists. It provides a penetrating look into the vast holdings of the organization’s archives.
My examples focused on research opportunities. But the site covers the far reaches of the Trust’s offerings – exhibits, virtual tours and educational materials.
You’ll see it all by clicking here.

About Jim McClure

Editor of the York Daily Record/Sunday News, ydr.com and its many digital products. Journalism/history blogger: yorktownsquare.com. Author or co-author of seven York County, Pa., history books.
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