Harrisburg, PA—witf, public media center and valued source of educational, inspiring and creative content in Central PA, announces the publication of The Peopling of Pennsylvania: the Creation of a Multicultural Society on the award-winning website, ExplorePAhistory.com. Authored by Dennis B. Downey and Charles Hardy III, with contributions by nine other authors, this narrative covers the themes of immigration and migration to Pennsylvania from earliest settlement (15,000 BCE), to the present day.
Subsidiary themes include religious pluralism and denominational diversity, social turmoil and the rich tapestry of cultures and identities that shaped individual and group experience. The story includes 100 Behind the Marker essays, 30 documents and nearly 300 images. A detailed timeline, bibliography, lesson plans and other resources can be found on the site.
The Peopling of Pennsylvania will also be of interest to scholars, teachers and students and those interested in Pennsylvania and United States history.
The opening chapter begins:
Migration and mobility, the ebb and flow of natives and newcomers and their continuous interactions over centuries, fashioned Pennsylvania into a complex, pluralistic and multicultural society. This diversity shaped the contours of historical experience and everyday life, laying a foundation for both mutual progress and turmoil. Over time, a patchwork quilt of ethnic and racial groups, with common dreams and unique cultural traditions, came to define the character of the Commonwealth and its citizenry. Equally significant, Pennsylvania became the staging ground for a sustained internal migration across North America. There is something quintessentially American in the peopling of Pennsylvania and the world its many residents made together.
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