Lost Monongahela Celebrates its 8th Anniversary

I was looking back in the archives and realized that February 10th, 2016 will be Lost Monongahela’s 8th birthday! It all began with this post about the D.E. Gamble grain elevator on 7th street. Back then online information about Monongahela history was sparse. The best resource I had at the time was the Historical Magazine Of Monongahela’s Old Home Coming Week: Sept. 6-15, 1908. This magazine is still a helpful but what if you want to find out something related to “chickens in Monongahela in 1891”? Well, you had to walk down to the Monongahela Area Library and look through a years worth of Daily Republican microfilms. It’s great having this resource in town but the problem is that you can’t perform a boolean word search on microfilm. However, in 2016 you can slake your thirst for chicken related information on Newspapers.com in less than a minute:

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Clipped from a 1891 issue of The Daily Republican

Just as significant is how much better the map offerings are online. This is an example of the map quality you would typically find back in 2008:

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A detail of Caldwell’s Atlas of 1876 from Rootsweb.

Compare that to the same map now available from the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission:

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A detail of Caldwell’s Atlas of 1876 from the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission. (click image to enlarge)

The Caldwell Atlas is another wonderful resource but imagine how exciting it would be if you could find maps dating back to 1885 showing the following information for each building in Monongahela:

Key for a Sanborn Insurance map.

Well to find out you’ll want to check back tomorrow to see how to use Sanborn insurance maps from 1886, 1895, 1900, 1905, 1910, 1918 and 1956 to show how the property at 5th and Main Streets evolved over the years. See you tomorrow and


*edit* March 9, 2016 – sorry for the delay. I’ll have a new post about using Sanborn Insurance maps up sometime this week.


9 thoughts on “Lost Monongahela Celebrates its 8th Anniversary

Add yours

  1. Congratulations, Dan!! Love your blog and definitely don’t have enough free time to explore and read everything, but please, keep up the good work!!


  2. Love your blog. But a bit jealous that your town’s paper got digitized. Still trying to figure out if it’s possible for mine. 🙂 Looking fwd to your Sanborn post.


  3. Hi Tammy and thanks for your comment. I’m trying to find out the same thing in a way. The Monongahela library has microfilm of our newspaper going back to the 1850’s I believe but I don’t know why the older issues haven’t been digitized. Hope to find out how to get it done some day.


  4. Thanks for your blog, Dan. I now live in Upstate NY, Rome, and love reading your stories about MonCity.


  5. Is there anyway on these films could we find out about any of the coal mine accidents and were they are buried. My grandfather has never been found. We as a family would love to find out and give our respect to him. My grandmother is buried near him and we cannot find either of them. He was in Vesta 7

    Kindest Regards,
    L. and R. Janos


  6. Enjoy reading the site items. Born and raised in Mon City. Long way from there now. But still good to know what’s happening there. Geo A Paxon


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