Monday, April 25, 2016

When History Gets Personal

Coming June 2016
by Marty Terwilliger, from Sheila Connolly's Museum Mysteries

Nell Pratt has really put her foot in it this time. Okay, it’s not her fault. She was doing her job. She found out that through some clerk’s stupid mistake years ago, the Society (that’s the Pennsylvania Antiquarian Society, where I’ve been on the board forever) still owns a piece of property in a part of Philadelphia where you wouldn’t want to send your worst enemy. Of course she had to go see it, and that’s when bullets started flying and somebody ended up dead. Not Nell, thank goodness—the Society needs her.

Almost getting killed on the job would kind of shake anybody up, right? But Nell doesn’t give up easily, and instead of crawling into her office and hiding, she’s trying to do something about the problems that she saw up close and personal.

Independence Hall
I love Philadelphia. My family’s been part of this city since seventeen-whatever, and I live here now, not far from the house where my father grew up. It’s got a lot of history, and some great museums and other sites that the tourists eat up. But you’d have to be blind not to see the changes that have happened even during my lifetime. Yes, there are slums—bad ones. Some parts of town have been nicknamed “Killadelphia.” To someone like me, that hurts.



It hurts Nell, too, and now it’s personal. So she’s looking for a way to make things better. It’s a good thing she has ways to do it, starting with documents for every era of the city, and photographs since cameras were invented. It can make you sad to look at them now, because sometimes they show how far downhill the city has gone. But it should also show what a city neighborhood could and should be. The problem is, it takes money and time and energy to make good changes happen, but Nell’s got some of those. And she’s got me to help. 

The Masonic Temple--most people
don't recognize it
Cities these days face a lot of problems. I think Nell and I have some good ideas for Philadelphia, but we’ll have to wait and see if we can make them work. I really hope we can.

What's your favorite city? What would you like to see improved there?


Dead End Street (Museum Mystery #7) will be released on June 7th. It's available for pre-order at Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

www.sheilaconnolly.com


7 comments:

  1. My favorite city is Athens. I only wish they would repair the plumbing.

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  2. Favorite city is Lebanon. Wish buildings weren't quite so close together and there were more trees and flowers planted around
    Love this series

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  3. New York City--which I think is kind of perfect although we could do with a few less red-light cameras and speed bumps. Of course I've lived here all my life, so I may be biased.

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  4. I don't have a favorite city but I did like Snoqualmie, WA when we would go visit my grandparents there.

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  5. I love my hometown of Baltimore Maryland...love my current work town of Washington D.C.. I would change the ridiculous traffic and the high rent/cost of living - especially in D.C.. My favorite childhood town is Rehoboth Beach DE. It still is my very favorite beach town. My favorite foreign city to visit is Edinburgh Scotland - probably the friendliest town (as well as St. Andrews) I have ever visited. I also love London.

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  6. I love my hometown of Baltimore Maryland...love my current work town of Washington D.C.. I would change the ridiculous traffic and the high rent/cost of living - especially in D.C.. My favorite childhood town is Rehoboth Beach DE. It still is my very favorite beach town. My favorite foreign city to visit is Edinburgh Scotland - probably the friendliest town (as well as St. Andrews) I have ever visited. I also love London.

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  7. Paris is a favorite city. I love to see less crowds...less people.

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