Thursday, July 13, 2017

Friday Night at the Museum to host Historian Joyce Tice for Postcard Program

The Bradford County Historical Society will host a program titled, “Carpenter & Pierce A1335 Postcards: A Trip Through Western Bradford County Villages a Century Ago,” scheduled for Friday, July 21, 2017 at 6 p.m. Doors open at 5:30 p.m. There is no admission charge for this event but donations are appreciated. To reserve a seat, participants are asked to register by calling 570-265-2240 or by email at

Starting in 1907, a yet to be identified photographer traveled the roads of western Bradford County photographing the villages along the way. These photos were published as the A1335 series of postcards by the pharmacy of Carpenter & Pierce in Troy. The cards were colorized and sold for many years. They represent a wonderful and valuable record of village life in the early twentieth century. Where possible, modern photos of the same views will be used for comparison. Some of the areas show little change and others are unrecognizable.

This program will be presented by Joyce Tice, well known historian and founder of the Tri-Counties Genealogy and History website as well as the History Center on Main Street, in Mansfield.

This program is part of the 2017 Friday Night at the Museum programming series that is held the third Friday of each month from May through October. Each event is held in the Great Room at the Bradford County Historical Society, located at 109 Pine Street, Towanda, PA. Refreshments are provided at each program and the museum is open a half-hour prior to the event.

Other programs scheduled for this year are: August 18 – 314th Infantry: Gone, But Not Forgotten; September 15 – Abandoned America: Dismantling the Dream; October 20 – McFadden: Bad Boy of the Republican Party.

The Bradford County Historical Society is a recipient agency of the Bradford County United Way and the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission. For more information about the society and its programming schedule, museum or research center, visit or check out the society Facebook page at

Riverside Cemetery Records Now Online through Partnership with BCHS

The first digital edition of burial records of the historic Riverside Cemetery, 122 William Street, is now available online through the Bradford County Historical Society website at Click on Library and then on Riverside Project where PDF versions of the map and database can be found. More than 2,000 community members, including numerous of the famous and infamous of Towanda & Bradford County, and veterans of the Revolutionary, 1812 and Civil wars, and of World Wars I & II are interred therein. The newly developed records collection is the most comprehensive, consolidated presentation of the records of burials in the cemetery.

The electronic database was produced by the Riverside Cemetery Association (RCA) with research assistance by the Bradford County Historical Society. Burial records hand-written on index cards and produced by volunteers of the Riverside Cemetery Association in about the 1960s were transcribed. In turn, many of the index cards were produced, also by volunteers, by transcribing original records dating from the early 1800s.

“The database provides an excellent first-stop resource for researchers of family and history of the greater Towanda area,” said Marguerite Fox Picou, RCA executive director. Previously, descendants of families and historians needed to coordinate with cemetery board members to meet at the office of the Riverside Cemetery to gain access to burial records. “By utilizing contemporary technologies, information is just mere clicks away for people anywhere,” Picou said.

“Adding the Riverside Cemetery Association’s records to the historical society’s online resources is very welcome and appreciated,” said Matt Carl, Bradford County Historical Society curator. “Many questions about Towanda history naturally include those about the deceased who are interred in Bradford County’s oldest and largest public cemetery.”

Some of the records are incomplete because the information is either not available or is undecipherable. It is anticipated that additional information will be completed in future digital editions as time and cross-checking permit, as additional information is obtained from various sources, and after the results of an exhaustive land survey of headstones, markers and underground radar information conducted in 2015 and 2016 are processed. A date for publishing the survey results has not been announced yet.

From its inception in the early 1800s, to this day in 2017, the Riverside Cemetery has been owned and managed by the all-volunteer Riverside Cemetery Association. However, community members of many kinds, including the present-day administration of Towanda Borough, also contribute in numerous ways to the maintenance of the cemetery.

With only two burials since 2009, the Riverside Cemetery is considered an inactive burial location, though the potential for a limited number of interments is still possible in some family and individually owned grave sites. Currently the Riverside Cemetery Association is developing plans to add public park components to the scenic 5.5-acre property.

“The Riverside Cemetery is one of the most beautiful scenic locations in Towanda,” Picou said. “Planned public park components, such as benches, signage and displays about significant persons and events are expected to add increased access to Towanda’s rich history and picturesque beauty,” Picou said.

Persons interested in contributing to information and other resources to The Riverside Cemetery Association may be reached by e-mail at Current members of its board of directors members for the Public Park Component and Access project are John Korfmann, Elizabeth McKean and Marguerite Fox Picou.