History Major Focuses Research on Mining History

Justin Skavery ’17

October 12, 2016

Researching the rich coal mining history of the area where he grew up was a natural fit for Justin Skavery '17.

For his senior history capstone, the Mt. Carmel, Pa., native traveled to several different museums in and around the central Pennsylvania region to study the history and immigration patterns that the coal mining industry brought to the area.  

During his research, Skavery volunteered at the No. 9 Coal Mining Museum in Lansford, Pa., where he maintains the upkeep of the museum and gives tours to guests.  

"It's been a very rewarding experience, getting to meet different types of people who have a connection with the local history," he says.  

Skavery, who also is majoring in anthropology, also interned at the Slifer House Museum in Lewisburg, Pa., in 2015. The museum was built before the Civil War and houses many artifacts from the Victorian era to the early 1900s.  

His job was to catalog artifacts brought into the museum.  

"Essentially, I would find an object in one of the exhibits (for me it was mostly the doctor's office exhibit and the gentleman's parlor exhibit), take a picture of it and try to find if said artifact was categorized in some of the older textual archives the museum had."  

After graduation, Skavery wants to attend graduate school to obtain a master's degree in history.

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