119 South Pitt Street · Mercer, Pennsylvania 16137 · 724-662-3490

MCHS Annual Dinner

The MCHS is proud to present our Annual Dinner on Sunday evening, May 7th, at 5:00 P.M. in the MCHS Buildings located at 119 South Pitt Street in the borough of Mercer. The evening will start at 5:00 P.M. with a reception in the James K. Sewall Memorial Library of the Anderson House. We will then proceed to the Social Hall of the Helen Black Miller Memorial Chapel where we will have dinner (6:15 pm), our business meeting, which will consist of a report on the Historical Society and election of officers and members of the Board of Directors, and our program (7:15 pm)—on the Mercer County Courthouse. The cost of the dinner ticket is twelve ($12.00) dollars (the same as last year), and dinner reservations must be made on/or before Wednesday May 3rd by stopping into the MCHS headquarters, by mail (MCHS, 119 South Pitt Street, Mercer, PA, 16137, please include a SASE), or by phoning 724-662-3490. The MCHS is open Tuesdays through Fridays, from 10:00 until 4:30 and from 10:00 until 3:00 on Saturdays. There is limited seating in the Social Hall, so tickets are “first come/first served.” There is no charge to attend the reception, the business meeting, or the program on the Mercer County...
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MUSIC FROM THE AMERICAN CIVIL WAR On Tuesday, May 9, 2017, the Mercer County Historical Society (119 South Pitt Street, Mercer, PA) will present a program of Music from the Civil War. This program will be presented by the Venango Brigade—featuring Steve Johnston on the tin whistle and John Tenney on the minstrel bones. These two gentlemen have provided many “concerts.” The doors open at 6:30 PM; the program starts at 7:00, and should end around 9:00. Please join us. The Venango Brigade is a unique combination of instruments performing music from the American Civil War era. Using a straight forward performance approach with the music, the Venango Brigade gives the audience a highly entertaining and enjoyable experience while maintaining a relaxed atmosphere. Great for smaller settings, the combination of the whistle (penny whistle) and minstrel bones provide the perfect touch. These two gentlemen have provided many “concerts” and this should be a unique experience for the Civil War Roundtable. The Civil War Discussion Group is part of the Mercer County Historical Society’s ongoing efforts to provide programming related to local history. The roundtable meets on the second Tuesday of each month from September through May. Participation in the discussion group is open to the public and is free. The Historical Society’s headquarters is at 119 South Pitt Street, Mercer. For further information, please call the Historical Society at 724-662-3490, email info@mchspa.org, or look to our webpage www.mchspa.org...
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HISTORY IN THE MAKING DISCUSSION GROUP On Tuesday, May 16, 2017, the Mercer County Historical Society will present —“History in the Making.”  We will be studying the role of airborne medics.  The doors will open at 6:30 PM at the library of the Mercer County Historical Society (119 South Pitt Street, Mercer, PA); the program starts at 7:00, and should end around 9:00.  Please join us.  Part of this program will be on video combined with a general discussion of the topic. The “History in the Making” Discussion Group is part of the Historical Society’s ongoing efforts to provide programming related to world and local history.  This roundtable will meet on the third Tuesday of each month from September through May.  Participation in the discussion group is open to the public and is free.  The Historical Society’s headquarters is at 119 South Pitt Street, Mercer.  For further information, please call the Historical Society at...
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Summer Hours for “Other Museums”

As you may already know, the Mercer County Historical Society (MCHS) has regular hours each week—except for holidays.  Those hours are Tuesdays through Fridays from 10:00 until 4:30 and Saturdays from 10:00 until 3:00. However, did you know we have other sites and hours, as well?  The three outlying museums of the MCHS are the Beringer/Caldwell One-Room School, halfway between Mercer and Greenville, PA, on PA Route #58; the Rural Life Museum, on PA Route #58, behind the former County Home and Hospital (Avalon Springs); and the Raisch Log Cabin on High Street in Sharpsville, PA, will be opening on the Sunday, May 29th, and will remain open until at least the Sunday before Labor Day.  The hours for these museums are from 1:00 until 4:00 and there is no charge or admission fee to visit or tour any of our museums.  The MCHS is also the owner of the Indian Graveyard located near Milledgeville on Custaloga Town Boy Scout Camp.  It can be visited at any time.  Say hello to the Boy Scouts for...
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The J.A. Stevenson Murder

A story told in the papers. Greenville Evening Record August 14, 1916 pg column 1&2 Osgood Man Murdered in his home last night J.A. Stevenson Met His Death in an Encounter With Burglars Who Got Away With $400 J.A. Stevenson of Osgood, proprietor of a country store and eating house, was found murdered in his home in that village shortly after midnight this morning by unknown burglars, who secured nearly $400. Mr. Stevenson was shot three times. One bullet broke his left arm, a second entered his left side, punctured a lung and came out on the right side near the back. The third missile was embedded in the body. Mr. and Mrs. Stevenson were alone in the house, in their bedroom on the second floor. Shortly after midnight they were awakened and found two men in the room. Mr. Stevenson seized a revolver lying on a table at the head of the bed and fired at the intruders, who ran, carrying Mr. Stevenson’s trousers containing his money. He followed them through an empty room to the head of the stairs, and down to the door of the kitchen, where he fell and expired before even the nearest neighbor could reach him. Mrs. Stevenson ran to the home of Jeff Williams, who telephoned for help to Greenville. Burgess Guy Thorne, Officers Landers, Grover, and Bessemer Detective Dennis Riley responded, and were at the Stevenson home at 2 o’clock. Coroner McBride of Sharon and Coroner’s Physician Steele of Greenville were also summoned and concluded a post mortem and investigation. Search of the premises showed there had been a struggle in the room next to the bedroom; there was a small spot of blood on the hall carpet, and only one of the three shots fired by Mr. Stevenson could be found. That went through a door and into a bed in an adjoining room where it was found. It is believed the other two took effect in the bodies of the robbers. Mr. Stevenson’s shirt was torn about the neck and there were marks and bruises on his neck where the murderer grappled with him. As he reached the kitchen door he fell to the floor, exclaiming to his wife, “They got my money and I guess they got me too.” These were his last words, and he died before Mr. Williams reached the house. The officers found the burglars...
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Man looks for a murderer 100 years later.

The MCHS was able to play a hand in looking into this mysterious death more than 100 years ago: The Record-Argus, Greenville, Pa. 16125 Saturday-Sunday, August 13-14, 2016 One-hundred years later, man seeks info about uncle’s murder By Molly Vanwoert Mystery is ‘out of a TV drama’ Until a few weeks ago, Jim Stevenson had no idea his great-great uncle J.A. Stevenson existed. While doing research on the history of another relative, Jim stumbled across J.A.’s story – documented in old newspaper articles collected by the Mercer County Historical Society (MCHS) – and found himself thrust into a murder mystery that he said “could be straight out of a TV drama.’ Now Jim said he is trying everything he can to learn more about the uncle he never knew he had, and the murder that ended his life exactly 100 years ago. According to historical society documents, J.A. died after being shot three times in his Osgood home on Aug. 13, 1916. While archives from the Greenville Evening Record and The Mercer Dispatch detail the many twists and turns of the investigation into J.A.’s untimely death, from the day after attack through Oct. 28, 1916, coverage of the investigation seems to end there. The final Evening Record article confirms the identity of one of J.A.’s killers – found dead just a mile outside of Mercer – and clears the name of another implicated in the crime, but does not answer the question of who the second killer was. This, among others, is a question Jim wants answered. Jim is currently working with Bill Philson – executive director of the historical society – in an attempt to track down missing newspaper articles, police reports and an obituary for J.A., which he hopes will help fill in the blanks of his family tree. Although his father was 11 years old when J.A. was murdered, Jim said his dad’s great-uncle was never mentioned to him; his sister, Nancy; or his brother, John, as they were growing up. “We knew nothing about [the murder], or him for that matter,” Jim said. “When it happened, my dad was 11 and lived very close by to J.A., but it was never discussed in our family – it was never brought up, by anyone.” Jim’s father kept hand-written records of the Stevensons’ family history, something Jim said he passed on to him. While researching a J.M....
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