PHMC calls for historical marker nominations

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HARRISBURG – The Pennsylvania Historical & Museum Commission is reminding individuals, public agencies, and private organizations that June 1 is the final date to nominate historic properties, persons, and events of state or national significance for the Pennsylvania Historical Marker Program in 2022.

Since 1914 PHMC’s historical markers have chronicled the people, places and events that have affected the lives of Pennsylvanians over the centuries. The more than 2,500 markers feature a multitude of noteworthy subjects, such as Native Americans and settlers, government and politics, athletes, entertainers, artists, struggles for freedom and equality, and factories and businesses.

Among the subjects for Pennsylvania Historical Markers approved by PHMC in 2021 are Chinese Workers in Beaver Falls, the first large Chinese workforce in Pennsylvania; Dr. James Oscar Cooper, a founder of one of America’s first Black fraternities; Ephrata Female Composers, three women of a religious society who were among the first American women to write music; and Winter Wonderland, the classic Christmas song.

Managed by the Pennsylvania State Historic Preservation Office, the Pennsylvania Historical Marker Program is one of PHMC’s most visible public history initiatives. The program brings together nominators, PHMC representatives, public officials, and local residents to dedicate and celebrate the installation of each new marker with a public ceremony.

For more information on the Pennsylvania Historical Marker Program, including marker criteria, the approval process, and resources to assist nominators, visit www.pahistoricalmarkers.com.

Beginning with markers approved in 2022, the people or organizations nominating the marker are no longer responsible for the costs of marker fabrication; however, they are still responsible for the installation costs. Please check with your appropriate municipal departments for more information. PHMC assumes all responsibilities for maintaining the marker once installed. 

Nominations must be submitted electronically by June 1 through PA-SHARE, PHMC’s web-based application that replaces the existing paper-based system. Nominators must create a Keystone Login profile to submit a marker nomination in PA-SHARE. Please see the Submitting a New Marker Nomination in PA-SHARE tutorial for step-by-step instructions.

Nominations are reviewed by a panel of independent historical experts from across the state. The panel recommendations are then presented to PHMC’s commissioners for review and a formal vote to approve, reject or modify the panel recommendations at their September 7 meeting. Notification of the commission results is sent in writing to all nominators shortly thereafter.

Inquiries about submitting nominations for evaluation or the marker program in general should be directed to Historical Marker Program Coordinator Alli Davis by e-mail to ra-phmarkers@pa.gov. or by telephone at 717-705-4266.