Out & About: Historic Hanna’s Town provides July 4 history lessons | TribLIVE.com
Out & About

Out & About: Historic Hanna’s Town provides July 4 history lessons

Shirley McMarlin

Out on the western edge of the Pennsylvania frontier, tiny Hanna’s Town still played a part in the American Revolution.

Independence Day visitors to the Hempfield historical site heard about the Hanna’s Town Resolves, a 1775 declaration whereby area residents proclaimed their willingness to take drastic measures — even to the point of picking up arms — to defend their rights against tyrannical acts of the British Parliament.

The Resolves declare, in part, that those hardy frontier denizens would “immediately form ourselves into a military body, to consist of companies to be made up out of the several townships under the following association, which is declared to be the Association of Westmoreland County.”

Visitors also heard readings of the Declaration of Independence by Westmoreland Historical Society collections manager Joanna Moyar, education coordinator Pamela Curtin and tour guide Levi Baum, all dressed in their colonial finest.

Also on the July 4 schedule of free activities were tours of the site, including the tavern, a barn housing an authentic 18th-century Conestoga wagon and the new Education Center with its library, gallery and gift shop.

Children were invited to try some old-fashioned toys and games and to hear a reading of “Independence Cake: A Revolutionary Confection,” author Deborah Hopkinson’s picture book inspired by 18th-century cookbook author Amelia Simmons.

Military re-enactor Dan Balzarini’s artillery firing demonstration put an exclamation mark on the festivities. Balzarini is a member of the modern-day version of Proctor’s Militia, the defense group formed as a result of the Hanna’s Town Resolves.

Seen brushing up on their history: Caleb and Melissa Crousey with sons Kaden and Preston, Kathy Holt, Joshua and Erin Persall and family, Vincent and Rebecca Abromitis, Chris and Nora Tamm with sons Ryan and Andy, Larry and Pat Tamm, Noelle Berkey, Erin Powell, Walter S. Keller, Robert and Robin Zollinger and, visiting from Los Alamos, N.M., Shyla McFarland and daughter Cora.

Shirley McMarlin is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Shirley at 724-836-5750, [email protected] or via Twitter .


1364320_web1_gtr-OA-hannas4th4-070819
Kim Stepinsky | For the Tribune-Review
Dan Balzarini, a re-enactor with Proctor’s Militia, stands silhouetted against the sky during the 2019 Fourth of July activities at Historic Hanna’s Town in Hempfield.
1364320_web1_gtr-OA-hannas4th7-070819
Kim Stepinsky | For the Tribune-Review
(From left) Tour guide Levi Baum; Joanna Moyar, director of collections and interpretation; and education coordinator Pamela Curtin take turns reading the Declaration of Independence during 2019 Fourth of July activities at Historic Hanna’s Town in Hempfield.
1364320_web1_gtr-OA-hannas4th9-070819
Kim Stepinsky | For the Tribune-Review
Bryce Manuele, 9, and his mother, Amy Manuele, of Delmont listen to the reading of the Declaration of Independence on July 4 at Historic Hanna’s Town in Hempfield.
1364320_web1_gtr-OA-hannas4th1-070819
Kim Stepinsky | For the Tribune-Review
Education intern Paige Krempasky of Belle Vernon leads story time during Fourth of July activities at Historic Hanna’s Town in Hempfield on July 4, 2019.
1364320_web1_gtr-OA-hannas4th3-070819
Kim Stepinsky | For the Tribune-Review
Education coordinator Pamela Curtin (center) gives a site tour during Fourth of July activities at Historic Hanna’s Town in Hempfield Township on Thursday, July 4, 2019.
1364320_web1_gtr-OA-hannas4th5-070819
Kim Stepinsky | For the Tribune-Review
(From left) Cora McFarland, 5, of Los Alamos, N.M., tours Historic Hanna’s Town with her grandmother, Robin Zollinger of Hempfield on July 4, 2019.
1364320_web1_gtr-OA-hannas4th8-070819
Kim Stepinsky | For the Tribune-Review
(From left) Education coordinator Pamela Curtin, tour guide Levi Baum and Joanna Moyar, manager of collections and interpretation, read the Declaration of Independence during the 2019 Fourth of July activities at Historic Hanna’s Town in Hempfield.
1364320_web1_gtr-OA-hannas4th6-070819
Kim Stepinsky | For the Tribune-Review
Rhiannon Busanic, 9, of New Florence listens to the reading of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 2019, at Historic Hanna’s Town in Hempfield.
1364320_web1_gtr-OA-hannas4th2-070819
Kim Stepinsky | For the Tribune-Review
(From left) Diana Savchuk of Gaithersburg, Md., and Roger Hayden of Adamsburg play a game of “graces” during 2019 Fourth of July activities t Historic Hanna’s Town in Hempfield.
Categories: Lifestyles | OutAndAbout
TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.