Franklin County Visitors Bureau Highlights Old Jail & John Brown House in Countdown to Spring Into History 2017 on April 29

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The countdown to Spring Into History 2017 on April 29 starts with a highlight of the Old Jail & John Brown House in Chambersburg.

Ben Franklin: The Philadelphian is an exhibit that will take place at the Old Jail during Spring into History

Ben Franklin: The Philadelphian is an exhibit that will take place at the Old Jail during Spring into History

Spring into History has over twenty sites organized in a circular route that visitors can begin the tour at any point and all sites have no admission fee...

On April 29, Franklin County springs into history with its sixth annual history ramble-aptly named Spring into History and highlights the Franklin County Old Jail and John Brown House among its stops.

Spring into History has over twenty sites organized in a circular route that visitors can begin the tour at any point and all sites have no admission fee. Traverse centuries of American heritage and culture, see Native American artifacts, frontier and colonial America, secret passages of the Underground Railroad, raids and invasions of the Civil War, and centuries of American military history. See architectural and archaeological history. Discover the foundation of 20th-century forestry conservation. Understand the importance of firefighting history and the turn-of-the-twentieth century evolution of industry.

The Franklin County Old Jail & John Brown House, both located on King Street in Chambersburg, are among the historic stops. The Old Jail, built in 1818 and one of the surviving structures from the 1864 Confederate burning of the town, was used for more than 150 years as a prison. Tradition suggests some of the cells in the basement were used as a way-station in the Underground Railroad to shelter runaway slaves. Nearby is the John Brown House, or Mary Ritner Boarding House. Ritner’s boarding house served as the northern headquarters of abolitionist John Brown, who planned his famous seizure of the arsenal at Harpers Ferry during the summer of 1859. Brown assumed the alias of Isaac Smith and professed to work for a mining company to disguise the heavy shipments of weapons stored in the railroad warehouses, less than a block from the boarding house.

During Spring into History, the Old Jail will feature a Benjamin Franklin exhibit titled “Ben Franklin the Philadelphian,” which will be interactive and family-friendly, featuring printing press stamps and magic squares. Visitors can view the recently digitized photos from the Mumper Studio Collection (1923-1947), and guests can request a search for family members' photos as well as other genealogical records. Digital copies and prints will be available for purchase. The nearby John Brown House will be open for tours throughout the day.

Spring Into History helps visitors to explore the history of Franklin County. Other stops on Spring Into History 2017 include the Conococheague Institute in Mercersburg, Mont Alto Historical Society, the Waynesboro Industrial Museum, Allison Antrim Museum in Greencastle and Chambersburg Volunteer Firefighters Museum. Check out these sites by downloading the self-guided tour booklet at https://issuu.com/fcvb/docs/spring_into_history_2017. Or, call the Franklin County Visitors Bureau at 866.646.8060 to have a copy mailed.

The Franklin County Visitors Bureau invites all to explore Franklin County PA and enjoy the history, arts, recreation, natural beauty, fresh foods and warm hospitality of communities like Chambersburg, Greencastle, Mercersburg, Shippensburg, and Waynesboro. Franklin County PA is located just north of the Mason Dixon Line and an easy drive to Washington DC, Philadelphia, and Pittsburgh. Discover more....plan your visit at ExploreFranklinCountyPA.com or by contacting 866.646.8060

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Janet Pollard

Lauren Cappuccio
Ben Franklin
since: 04/2013
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