Pennsylvania History: A Journal of Mid-Atlantic Studies special Summer 2022 issue (89.3) now available.

Linda Ries's picture
Pennsylvania, United States
Subject Fields: 
American History / Studies, Archival Science, Health and Health Care, Human Rights, Social History / Studies

The Pennsylvania Historical Association announces the availability of the Summer 2022 issue of Pennsylvania History. It is a special theme issue on “Exploring Disability History in Pennsylvania.”  The Guest Editor is Dennis Downey, Emeritus of Millersburg University. It features thirteen articles by fourteen authors on the history and treatment of people with intellectual disabilities in the Commonwealth. The issue breaks new ground, and, according to Professor Randall Miller of St. Joseph’s University, “gives us historical perspective, keys to important archival collections, examples of historical studies, personal accounts, and relevant book reviews.”

The authors and the articles are:

Introduction: Dennis B. Downey, “Disability History in a Commonwealth and Regional Context.” 

Part I: Reframing Struggles for Rights and Justice: The 2021 Roundtable

Nathan R. Stenberg, “Roundtable on Disability History and Research.” 

Dennis B. Downey, “From Segregation to Disability Rights: Pennsylvania Disability in Historical Context.” 

Tyler Stump, “Records and Resources: Finding the History of Disability and Institutionalization at the Pennsylvania State Archives.”

Sierra Green, “Emerging Research Opportunities in Disability History at the Heinz History Center.”

Part II: Recent Research in Disability History

Elliott W. Simon and Brent J. Ruswick, “Hellbound Train: The Beginning of the Pennsylvania State Institutional System for People with Intellectual Disabilities.”

Kathryn Yelinek, “’It Can Be Done Much Faster!’: The Transition from the Samuel G. Dixon State Hospital to the South Mountain Restoration Center.” 

Katrina Nancy Jirik, “Parents, Superintendents, and Lawmakers in the Creation of Institutions for the Feeble-Minded, 1876–1916.”

Mary Beth Schreiner, “Realities of Life in an Institution: Dispelling Misconceptions of Disability.”

Part III: Places of Education, Activism, and Advocacy

Kathryn L. Fialkowski, “Temple University’s Intellectual Disability Collections: Collaboration, Education and Engagement.”

Tina Calabro and Guy Caruso, “The Western Pennsylvania Disability History and Action Consortium

James William Conroy and Dennis B. Downey, “Preserving Pennsylvania’s History of Disability Rights Advocacy: The Pennhurst Memorial and Preservation Alliance.”

Chelsea D. Chamberlain and Elliott W. Simon, “The Elwyn Archives and Museum.”

In addition to a print version, the entire issue is available on ProjectMuse and the Scholarly Publishing Collective. The PHA has also made one article, Mary Schreiner's "Realities of Life in an Institution,"  available free on its website at: Also on the same webpage, and available for free viewing , PHA hosted a virtual roundtable on the special issue with Guest Editor Downey and authors Elliott Simon and Tyler Stump, where they discuss the importance of this groundbreaking research. For more information contact  

Contact Info: 

Linda A. Ries, Editor, Pennsylvania History: A Journal of Mid-Atlantic Studies

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