The Great
Volume 14, No. 2  Fall 2012
Meeting On October 28
The next meeting of the Thaddeus Stevens Society will be on Sunday, Oct. 28, at 2
p.m. at the home of Ruthe Craley at 425 College Avenue in Gettysburg. We will be
gathering at her house and then walking over to the nearby Gettysburg College library
where we will see the Stevens exhibit. After that, we will return to Ruthe's home for a
business meeting and light refreshments. If you need a ride to the meeting, please send
an email to or call Ross Hetrick at 717-334-1912.
No Stainless Steel Spheres In Stevens Cemetery
   Five stainless steel spheres will not be gong into the cemetery where Thaddeus
Stevens is buried.
   Poetry Paths, the group that had proposed putting the modernistic spheres in the
nineteenth century cemetery, decided the graveyard was not a feasible site and will
install them on the grounds of the Fulton Elementary School, which is next to the
  The Thaddeus Stevens Society welcomes the decision and looks forward to working
to improve Stevens's final resting place.
Cheer Along Thad at Lincoln Movie Parties
   The much awaited Lincoln film is opening November and the Thaddeus Stevens
Society is holding parties in Gettysburg and Lancaster to cheer along Thad.
   The Gettysburg event will be on Saturday, November 17, and the Lancaster one will
be the following day, Sunday, November 18. We plan on watching the movie at the
Gateway Theater in Gettysburg at 7 p.m. and then having a party at the bar of the
Wyndham Hotel, which is in the same complex. Then on Sunday, we will watch the
movie at 7 p.m. at the Penn Cinema in Lititz then gather at Scooter's Restaurant at 921
Lititz Pike, which is about a mile away.
   Participants will be responsible for buying their own tickets and refreshments, but
they will receive a unique souvenir poster for the event as well as enjoying the
company of other Thaddites.
   If you plan to attend, please send an email to
or call Ross Hetrick at 717-334-1912 by November 10 so we can keep you abreast of
any changes in the plans and to ensure we have enough posters. For more information
on how Thad is being portrayed in the movie, click this link:
Stevens Stained Glass Window Finds Home At
Thaddeus Stevens College of Technology
   An historic stained glass window of Thaddeus Stevens will finally find a proper home
at the Thaddeus Stevens College of Technology.
   The window, which has been on ebay for years, has been acquired by the college's
alumni association and will be the centerpiece of a renovated auditorium in the college's
main building.
   Alex Munro, director of the alumni association, said a special case with back lighting
is being built for the window and it should be coming to the college in late December or
early January. It will be placed in the center of the back wall of the stage in the
auditorium in Mellor Hall. When other remodeling is completed, the space will be
rechristened the Lydia Hamilton Smith Gallery after Stevens's longtime housekeeper. It
will be dedicated to the women who have graduated from Stevens College.
   The origin of the window is a mystery. It has the Pennsylvania seal at the bottom,
but we have not been able to find any mention of it in state records. In cleaning the
window recently, it was found to have smoke damage. And guess what, the state capitol
building in Harrisburg was destroyed by fire in February 1897. Unfortunately, no
records were kept of what stained glass windows were in the capitol before the fire and
the company that salvaged the capitol was allowed to sell the remains, according to a
capitol building historian.
   But wherever it came from, we're glad it's home now.
Thad's 220th Birthday Celebration Great Success
   The two-day celebration of Thaddeus Stevens's 220th birthday in April was truly
   The first day featured a seminar at the Thaddeus Stevens College of Technlogy,
which included talks by Dr. Bradley Hoch, author of a Stevens biography; Beverly
Palmer, the editor of Stevens's papers; and Ross Hetrick, president of the Thaddeus
Stevens Society.
   Videos of their talks are at these links:
Hoch,  Palmer,  Hetrick
   This was followed by the traditional graveside ceremony at the Schreiner Concord
Cemetery where Stevens is buried. A video of that ceremony can be found at this link:
Graveside Ceremony.
   The day was topped off with a dinner at the Lancaster County Convention Center,
which is next to Thaddeus Stevens's house. State Senator Lloyd Smucker of Lancaster
gave a rousing key note speech praising Stevens's accomplishments and putting in a
plug for a Stevens stamp.  "Thaddeus Stevens put his indelible stamp on the pages of
history," he said.  "Surely he should be featured on a commemorative stamp." You can
find his full remarks at this link:
Senator Smucker's speech.
   Then the observance switched to Gettysburg on Monday, April 16, where a wayside
sign about Stevens was dedicated in front of Stevens's hall at Gettysburg College. After
the dedication, the college opened a new exhibit about Stevens in its special collections
room in Mussellman Library. You can see a video about the exhibit at this link:
Thaddeus Stevens stained glass window