March 6, 2007
The Lebanon Campus of HACC, Central Pennsylvania's Community College, will host the 12th Annual Pennsylvania German Heritage Festival this month.

This celebration of Pennsylvania German food, art, crafts, music, history and genealogy presentations will be held at HACC's Lebanon Campus at 735 Cumberland Street on St. Patrick's Day, Saturday, March 17, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission is free and open to the public.

Visitors to the festival will learn the connection with the Irish when featured presenter Henry Z. "Hank" Jones, Jr., Fellow, American Society of Genealogists, of California speaks on "The Irish Palatines."

The author of many books on the subject, Jones will give a lively talk about those hearty souls who left Germany in 1709 for a new life in the New World but, instead, got only as far as Ireland.

After a hard start in the Emerald Isle, they eventually carved an important place in Irish culture and history, while still retaining some of their Germanic traditions and habits from the Old Country. Jones will discuss the reasons for their exodus and the intriguing story of their eventual settlement.

Other special presentations include "Cumulative" Songs by the Miller Brothers. This is a Pennsylvania German folk tradition that is rarely performed. A grandmother traditionally taught these songs orally to her grandchildren. The Miller Brothers, indigenous folk singers, learned the songs they will sing in this way.

John Huber will share his knowledge of "The History and Manufacturing of Pennsylvania Redware Pottery" in a fascinating visual presentation. His family has been manufacturing Redware for five generations. He has just passed the family business on to the sixth generation.

Music will be presented by Der Nei Dolpehock Sanger Chor and Die Schwadore Schalle. Food for sale will include Chicken Pot Pie, Schnitz un Gnepp, Shoofly Pie and more. Arts and crafts will include Fraktur, Scherenschnitte, Moravian Stars and other works. History, genealogy, language and literature resources will be available.

This is a project of the Pennsylvania German Studies Program and supported by HACC. For more information, call 270-HACC.

Jones also will be the featured speaker at the Genealogy Conference held at the Lebanon Campus of HACC on Sunday, March 18, 1:30-5:30 p.m.

At 1:30 p.m., he will present, "Tracing the Origins of Early 18th Century Emigrants." This will be a lively discussion emphasizing the how-to's of pinpointing and then fully tracing the European roots of our ancestors. A step-by-step plan of attack, showing how "They Came Together, They Stayed Together!" (CRN: 73235)

At 3 p.m., he will present, "When Sources are Wrong!" This is a study of primary and secondary sources often found to be in error. Jones will discuss how to spot them and then overcome these troublesome obstacles while climbing the family tree. This topic is a universal one, touching every ethnic group and every timeframe. (CRN: 73236)

At 4:30, Jones will present, "Genealogy in the New Millennium: Where We've Been and Where We're Going!" This is a look at what is ahead in new genealogical technology that also emphasizes the importance of humanizing our ancestors and not allowing our new tools to dictate our direction as we climb the family tree. (CRN: 73237)

This Genealogy Conference requires a $30 registration fee. Registration may be made by calling Darlene Kalenevitch at 270-6309 or 270-4222. Members of a Central Pennsylvania genealogy or history society should mention their group's name to get the reduced registration rate of $30 for all three sessions.

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