Penn State and State College in their early years

Eric Porterfield, a friend of the Mount Nittany Conservancy, recently shared these historical State College photos. These photos show in a dramatic way the development of State College from something less than a speck on…

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Bog Turtle Brewery’s ‘Evan Pugh Vanilla Porter’

Penn State’s first president Evan Pugh was born in 1828 at Jordan Bank Farm, three miles south of the city center of Oxford, Pennsylvania, an hour west of Philadelphia, in Chester County. One-hundred eighty-nine years later,…

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Why Learn the Penn State Story?

The creation of a Penn State undergraduate course on the university’s history is a source of great excitement and pride for many who dwell in body and in spirit in Mount Nittany’s gentle shadow. In…

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The First History of Penn State

Over its 161 years, Penn State has twice sanctioned books chronicling the University’s history, once in the 1940s and again with an updated version in the 1980s. While history professor and Penn State historian Wayland…

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Our Founders Were Real

Evan Pugh was Penn State’s first president. It’s great if you happen to know of Evan Pugh. In fact, it’s likely that knowing about him already puts you in the minority among students and alumni.…

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The Origins of ‘Happy Valley’

Most of have heard at least one theory on the origins of our “Happy Valley” nickname. Did it arise during the Great Depression, an expression of area’s economic resiliency? Or perhaps it was the tongue-in-cheek…

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Our Street Names Are Memorials

It’s always great when we come into deeper contact with the life and history of the place we live. That happened last year with a column for Town & Gown about a project cataloging the CBICC historical archive:…

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Elliot Abrams: The More Things Change…

To even the most casual radio listeners here in the Valley (and in many other markets throughout the country), Accuweather meteorologist Elliot Abrams is the familiar voice of the morning weather forecast. Abrams has been…

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Arts Fest is Itself a Work of Art

In the slower summer months in Happy Valley, Arts Fest looms large on the calendar. The Central Pennsylvania Festival of the Arts has been a special time of year for many decades, since its earliest…

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Imagining Centre County and the Nittany Valley of the 1920s

By Cori Agostinelli Kalupson The giving and graceful nature of our community help make it such a special place. For 40 years now, these qualities have been on display through the locally-supported growth of the…

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A Voice from Old State’s Past

The following, abridged and lightly edited, is taken from “Reminiscences of Dr. F.J. Pond,” a pamphlet-style Nittany Valley Press book of Penn State memories from Dr. Francis Pond, an alumnus and Atherton-era professor. Dr. Pond…

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