Volunteers Wanted!
There are a wide variety of areas
needing volunteers from creating
displays to assisting researchers....
Please consider volunteering at the
Historical Society.  
Copyright 2014: Boyertown Area Historical Society

2014 Programs resume in October
From a church tour and organ
recital to model railroading and
Christmas ornaments
....come and
enjoy the many excellent
programs scheduled for the
remainder of 2014
Go to the
program page for
additional information.
Copyright, 2015. Boyertown Area Historical Society

43 S. Chestnut Street
Boyertown, PA  19512
General email:
Museum and Library:
Office Manager:
Web Site:
Follow the Society on Facebook:
Wednesday 9:00 AM- 4:00 PM
Tuesday 5:00-9:00 PM
Please contact the
Museum and Library Director or Office Manager
for Information on Group Tours and Educational Programs.
Closed Holidays
use this link to access the Historical Society By-Laws

7:00 PM
First Wednesday of the Month,
October to June
Society Building
(no meeting in January)
A $5.00 donation is being asked of all non-members
who attend the monthly meetings.
2015 programs.
October 7, 2015
Hank Frecon will talk about Apple Cider,
its production and importance to the community.
November 4, 2015
Robert Gerhart talks about Annie Funk of Bally,
a 38 year old missionary who
became a victim of the Titantic tragedy.
Boyertown Area
Historical Society

What is the difference between a ghost, a
spirit, and a spoo
Discover another side to Boyertown.
Take part in a Ghost Walk, a Haunted Train Ride,
or a Paranormal Investigation....
Ghost walks are the fourth Saturday of the month.
An exciting paranormal investigation is coming!
Go to the events page for details on the Ghost Walks
as well as a DVD on the Rhoads Opera House Fire and
Charles Adams III's book,
Haunted Boyertown, about the strange
and mysterious happenings in the area.
Der Belsnickel Craft Show
Nationally Recognized for Excellence
For more information, use the
Craft Show link
Registrations are currently being processed for
the 2015 Belsnickel.  All 10x10 and 8x8 corners
as well as 8x8 and 10x10 regular spaces are sold out.
10x8 spaces are still available.
the Ghosts
are back!
After the Fire
the Fire
Has this 1908 fire tragedy
and the loss of almost
200 people
affected Boyertown's
Haunted History?
Take a Ghost Walk and
investigate the
other side of Boyertown.
Events Page
provides information on
the date and ticket price
of Boyertown's
Historic Ghost Walks.
Thank you to Margaret Harner for researching and supplying these
vignettes of life in  Boyertown.
This date in the
Boyertown area:
Use this link, Daily News, to read previous articles

July 26, 1890
Thomas Edison is calling it quits to his work in Bechtelsville and removing the extensive machinery he
had installed for the purpose of testing the ore concentrator he had invented. It works on the principle
of a powerful   magnet, attracting the ore and separating it from the earth without any further manual
labor. The plant erected by his company cost over $50,000 and is now being moved to another state.
Edison found that the quantity of ore in the rocks there is insufficient to pay for his experiment. (That
was the beginning of the end of profitable mining operations in the area.)

July 27, 1907
“Like a thunder clap out of a clear sky” came the news that the Farmers’ National Bank of Boyertown
(now M & T Bank) has closed its doors, coming as a total surprise to the directors and depositors alike.
The bank has been put in the hands of a receiver, who is working in harmony with the directors to go
over the accounts and affairs, to reopen the bank at the earliest date. The problem started when a
Philadelphia investor, Dewitt C. Hillegass borrowed $130,000 from the bank, using worthless collateral.
He could not repay the debt, and the bank ran out of money. The founder and president of the bank is
Dr. Thomas Jefferson Boyer Rhoads, a descendant of the founder of Boyertown. He had built the largest
building in town to house their office, which was popularly known as the Rhoads Opera House. Dr.
Rhoads takes great pride in his bank, and he suffered terribly from the disaster. He worked night and
day to make sure that the depositors were secured against the loss. It reopened a month later, when the
directors contributed $30,000 of their personal assets to the cash flow. During that ordeal, Dr. Rhoads’
health was greatly undermined, and after the bank reopened, he rejoiced that he could now settle down
and enjoy the remainder of his days in contentment ( for less than six months, until Jan. 13, 1908, when
this building was gutted by fire, with the loss of 170 lives).