Sunday, August 28, 2016

1906 postcard featuring Stevens High in Lancaster

This L.B. Herr postcard — postmarked way back on March 31, 1906, in both Lancaster (sending postmark) and Marietta (receiving postmark), Pennsylvania1 — features historic Stevens High School in the city of Lancaster. The building, named after Thaddeus Stevens, was designed by architect Cassius Emlen Urban around 1904.2 It served as a high school until 1938 (complete with a large ballroom on the third floor) and then made the transition into an elementary school.

The building was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1983, and today it is an apartment complex called the Residences at Stevens School, with 34 units that feature air-conditioning and high-speed internet access. One review on states: "It's like living in a treehouse. The mature landscape offers great shade and perfect picturesque views. The converted school idea is fun, with the original chalkboards still hanging."

The note on the front of the card — this was slightly before you were allowed to put anything but the address on the back — states:
March 30, '06
Dear Mother: I don't know yet when I can get off, so I will find out, also about the coat, then I will write a letter about Tuesday. Hoping you are all well lovingly your Dr. [not even going to try].

1. That's about 3.48 billion seconds ago. A lot can happen in 3.48 billion seconds.
2. Urban also designed many of the buildings for the Hershey Chocolate Company in the early 20th century.

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