Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission

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Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission
PHMC logo.png
Logo of the PHMC
Agency overview
FormedJune 6, 1945
Preceding agency
  • Pennsylvania Historical Commission
JurisdictionState government of Pennsylvania
HeadquartersState Museum Building,
300 North Street
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania 17120
40°15′57″N 76°53′6.5″W / 40.26583°N 76.885139°W / 40.26583; -76.885139
Agency executives
  • Nancy Moses, Chair
  • Andrea W. Lowery, Executive Director

The Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission (PHMC) is the governmental agency of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania responsible for the collection, conservation and interpretation of Pennsylvania's historic heritage. The commission cares for historical manuscripts, public records, and objects of historic interest; museums; archeology; publications; historic sites and properties; historic preservation; geographic names; and the promotion of public interest in Pennsylvania history.[1]

PHMC was established June 6, 1945, by state Act No. 446, merging the Pennsylvania Historical Commission (PHC), Pennsylvania State Museum and Pennsylvania State Archives.[2][3]

The commission is an independent administrative board, consisting of nine citizens of the Commonwealth appointed by the Governor; the Secretary of Education ex officio; two members of the Senate appointed by the President Pro Tempore and Minority Leader; and two members of the House of Representatives appointed by the Speaker and Minority Leader. As of March 2019, the chairman is Nancy Moses and the executive director is Andrea Lowery. PHMC Commissioners as of March 2019 are Ophelia M. Chambliss, Andrew E. Dinniman, Senator, William V. Lewis, Robert Matzie, Representative; Fredrick C. Powell, Pedro Rivera (ex officio, Secretary of Education), Robert M. Savakinus, Joseph B. Scarnati III, Senator, David Schuyler, Ph.D., Kenneth C. Turner, Parke Wentling, Representative; Philip D. Zimmermann.

PHMC Mission: The PHMC works in partnership with others to preserve the Commonwealth's natural and cultural heritage as a steward, teacher and advocate for the people of Pennsylvania and the nation.

PHMC Vision: The PHMC enriches people's lives by helping them to understand Pennsylvania's past, to appreciate the present, and to embrace the future.

Historical marker program[edit]

The PHMC administers the Historical Marker Program, which when it began in 1914, installed metal plaques onto large rocks and boulders to commemorate individuals, events, and landmarks throughout the state. The program was launched by the Pennsylvania Historical Commission, the predecessor to the PHMC. The markers were redesigned in 1945–46 to make them easier to read from a passing car. Large cast aluminum markers were mounted on poles along a street or road, close to where a landmark was located, a person lived or worked, or an event occurred. By 2020, more than 2,000 markers were in place and were being maintained by the PHMC. The PHMC has posted criteria for inclusion for new markers and accepts marker proposals from the public.[4]

Pennsylvania Heritage[edit]

PHMC also publishes Pennsylvania Heritage magazine[5] in conjunction with the Pennsylvania Heritage Foundation.

List of PHMC administered sites in Pennsylvania[edit]

Partnered Properties[edit]

Placed Property Program[edit]

Transferred: DCNR[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission". Retrieved 2020-08-15.
  2. ^ Beyer, George (1991). Guide to the State Historical Markers of Pennsylvania. Harrisburg, PA: Pennsylvania Historical & Museum Commission. p. 3. ISBN 0-89271-040-3.
  3. ^ Nichols, Roy F. (1967). The Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission; a History. Harrisburg: Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission. OCLC 297517.
  4. ^ "PA Historical Marker Program". Pennsylvania Historical & Museum Commission. Retrieved 2020-08-15.
  5. ^ "Pennsylvania Heritage Foundation : Events : Heritage Magazine". Retrieved 2020-08-15.

External links[edit]