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Pictured is Oliver Township Mail Pouch Tobacco barn print by Joanne Garrett, late 20th century, from the collection of Giles and Terry Myers.

When the Punxsutawney Area Historical and Genealogical Society, Inc. was formed in 1977 on the heels of an enthusiastic celebration of the nation’s 1976 bicentennial, the decision of its founders to include the word “area” was a recognition that the history of Punxsutawney was, and continues to be, regional in nature, extending beyond both the borough and the burrow.  

An early example of regional thinking came some years earlier with the consolidation of schools into the Punxsutawney Area School District. Township residents, just like borough residents, support the district’s schools directly through property and local earned income taxes and indirectly through state

income taxes and rent payments to landlords. We have become used to the concept of an area perspective; all one need do is look at the telephone book or search for Punxsutawney-based organizations on the internet to see how many incorporate “area” into the entity name. It is an affirmation and a message of inclusivity.

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