Looking Back: Franklin County’s history January 7th

Franklin County’s history

Take a look back at Franklin County’s history through news and photos that appeared in local newspapers 25, 50, and 100 years ago on January 7th.

25 Years Ago 

January7, 1996Sunday

“Potter Jeff White offers talk on redware pottery” 

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Lebanon’s nationally known redware potter Jeff White will present a slide lecture on his work on Thursday, Jan. 11, at 7 p.m., at the Lebanon Campus of HAAC.  

Sponsored by the Lebanon Valley Council of the Arts, the presentation is free and open to the public.  White began throwing pots in 1966 and established a working colonial pottery exhibition at Meadowcroft Village, south of Pittsburgh, in 1969, using the traditional techniques of making stoneware and salt glaze pottery.   

He graduated from Slippery Rock University with a double major in chemistry and ceramics in 1971 and has since then been specializing in redware pottery in hip Lebanon studio. 

Redware was made in New England and the Middle Atlantic states from the time of the first colonists until the 1850s.  At that time most potters were farmers, explains White.  Pottery making was a seasonal trade, something the farmers would do to supplement their income.  They worked the land in the summer and made pottery in the winter.  

The first immigrants who came to the rich colony known as Penn’s Woods in the 17th century found a land brimming with natural resources including abundant deposits of clay needed for pottery making.   

Several hundred potters practiced their craft in Pennsylvania in the 18th and 19th centuries.  Most of their products were designed for daily use. 

Fancy pieces of redware were primarily used for decoration, White said.   

The Pennsylvania Germans were known for their elaborate slipware and sgraffito designs.  

The sgraffito pieces were prepared by first covering the red clay vessel with a thin layer of yellow slip, then carving through designs to expose the red clay beneath.  

With years of experience, Jeff White has mastered the fine art of slip trailing and sgraffito.  His work has been shown in many national publications and he has exhibited both in the United States and abroad.  

White has also produced red-ware for Museum Editions Limited, featured in Early American Life Magazine. 

50 Years Ago   

January 7,1971Thursday

“Zero Cold Continues “ 

Zero cold clung to most of the nation from the Southwest to the Great Lakes today, taking a heavy toll on fuel supplies and slowing activity.  

Temperatures eased slightly in sections of the Plains, but subzero readings were widespread for the fourth day from Utah and New Mexico to the heart of the Midwest. 

Albuquerque schools were closed for the third day this week because “the current unusual cold temperatures have made it impossible to provide a proper learning atmosphere,” school officials announced.  

The heavy demand for natural gas caused pressure to fall to one-third normal in the Southern Union Gas Co.’s lines in New Mexico Wednesday.  The company was given permission to truck propane to Albuquerque to pump into the pipes to raise pressure.  

Postal service in the city also was cut back sharply and window service at the main post office was suspended through today after the General Services Administration ordered thermostats lowered to 40 to conserve gas.  

Thermometers that registered 12 below early Wednesday in Albuquerque failed to show a reading higher than 6 above zero during the day.   

A temperature of 21 below at Kingston, Utah, broke a pipe bringing water to the village of 150. Residents spend much of they day hauling water from the nearby hille where the pipe ruptured.   

A -6 reading at Salt Lake City broke a 6-inch water main under the Hotel Utah.  Water flooded tunnels to six downtown buildings, cutting off heat and power for four hours.  

In Arizona which recorded its lowest temperature ever with a 39 Wednesday on the Fort Apache Indian Reservation the Magma Copper Co. laid off half its 2,000 workers at San Manuel and closed its mine because of a natural gas shortage. 

100 Years Ago  


“Town’s Newest Pastor “ 

County's history January 7th

This is the latest addition to Chambersburg’s ministers, being the Rev. Walter Ji. Gobrecht, who arrived here yesterday with his wife.   

He Is the pastor-elect of St. John’s Reformed Church.  Next Sunday he will occupy the pulpit and on the Sabbath following will be formally Installed as pastor.  Mr, and Mrs. . Gobrecht’ ” will dwell In the parsonage In Lincoln Way East as soon as their goods arrive.  The parsonage has been Improved and renovated. 


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