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A Lebanon County Institution that salutes its history - abc27 WHTM

A Lebanon County Institution that salutes its history

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  • Shippensburg University Hosts Meet and Greet With a Kick

    Shippensburg University Hosts Meet and Greet With a Kick

    Shippensburg University Hosts Meet and Greet With a Kick

    Friday, August 29 2014 9:31 AM EDT2014-08-29 13:31:46 GMT
    It's certainly a unique way to break the ice between incoming freshmen and the faculty at Shippensburg University. A just for fun soccer match.Or, as PA announcer Stephanie Jirard, a Criminal Justice professor, put it: "The geriatric ward against the new generation!"The game has become a tradition at SU, organized seven years ago by the school's chapter of the Association of Pennsylvania State College and University Faculties.Human Communications Studies Professor Dr. Kara Laskowski, public r...More >>
    It's certainly a unique way to break the ice between incoming freshmen and the faculty at Shippensburg University. A just for fun soccer match.Or, as PA announcer Stephanie Jirard, a Criminal Justice professor, put it: "The geriatric ward against the new generation!"The game has become a tradition at SU, organized seven years ago by the school's chapter of the Association of Pennsylvania State College and University Faculties.Human Communications Studies Professor Dr. Kara Laskowski, public r...More >>
  • Historic Ferry Boat Operation Still Draws Riders

    Historic Ferry Boat Operation Still Draws Riders

    Historic Ferry Boat Operation Still Draws Riders

    Tuesday, August 26 2014 9:16 AM EDT2014-08-26 13:16:25 GMT
    It's only a one mile journey in distance, but it covers nearly two centuries in time."People come to enjoy the river," said Don Lebo, as he guided another load of vehicles onto the Roaring Bull V. "They come to enjoy the scenery and to enjoy the wildlife."Lebo should know. He's been at the helm of the Roaring Bull V and the Falcon III ferry boats for 25 years.The 20 minute trip across the Susquehanna River dates back to the early 1800's when the Millersburg Ferry system first became official....More >>
    It's only a one mile journey in distance, but it covers nearly two centuries in time."People come to enjoy the river," said Don Lebo, as he guided another load of vehicles onto the Roaring Bull V. "They come to enjoy the scenery and to enjoy the wildlife."Lebo should know. He's been at the helm of the Roaring Bull V and the Falcon III ferry boats for 25 years.The 20 minute trip across the Susquehanna River dates back to the early 1800's when the Millersburg Ferry system first became official....More >>
  • Book Trilogy Traces Elizabethville Woman's West Virginia Roots.

    Book Trilogy Traces Elizabethville Woman's West Virginia Roots.

    Book Trilogy Traces Elizabethville Woman's West Virginia Roots.

    Friday, August 22 2014 8:59 AM EDT2014-08-22 12:59:44 GMT
    For many of her 87 years, Anna Jean Bennett Ditty was told, "You ought to write a book!" So, ten years ago, she did. In fact, she needed three books to cover her life, starting with "The House on the Hill," about growing up with three siblings in a small West Virginia town during the depression, with a hard-working mom and an absentee father.Browsing through her first book, Ditty paused to point out a childhood picture of her baby brother Dickie."He's my baby brother," she said. "My momma alw...More >>
    For many of her 87 years, Anna Jean Bennett Ditty was told, "You ought to write a book!" So, ten years ago, she did. In fact, she needed three books to cover her life, starting with "The House on the Hill," about growing up with three siblings in a small West Virginia town during the depression, with a hard-working mom and an absentee father.Browsing through her first book, Ditty paused to point out a childhood picture of her baby brother Dickie."He's my baby brother," she said. "My momma alw...More >>

The setting is humble, but proud at the Pa. National Guard Military Museum at Fort Indiantown Gap. It's two floors of military memorabilia, housed in World War Two wooden barracks. It's a close up look at how soldiers lived, what they wore and the weapons they used, dating from the Civil War to the Gulf War.

Museum director and curator, Charlie Oellig, was there when the museum opened twenty seven years ago. He delights in sharing the Guard's long and honored story with visitors.

"We date back to 1747," he explained. "The Guard was founded by Ben Franklin as a 'Battalion of Associators.' The 28th Division, our Guard Division, is the oldest continuous serving Guard Division in the whole U.S. Army."

Visitors to the museum are able to trace the evolution of the Guard's guns and uniforms throughout the years, and those of the enemy. Living quarters in the barracks are maintained just as they were in the early 1940s. In addition, the equipment and uniforms used in medical care are displayed in a separate room. There is also a special tribute to Guardsmen who made the ultimate sacrifice for our country, including an actual Medal of Honor. And the first female enlisted member of the Pa. National Guard is honored. Perhaps, the Guard's most famous alumnus, Anthony Biddle Jr., is honored for his many years as an American diplomat, a World War One soldier, General Eisenhower's right hand man and Adjutant General of the Pa National Guard.

Many of museum items are from the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission, while others were collected from aging buildings at the Gap, that were slated to be demolished. But, a surprising amount of material comes from private donations.

"People pass away and their grown children don't know what to do with dad's uniform," explained Oellig. " Sometimes they'll give us everything. They won't even keep dad's medals."

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