Scranton’s Story Fall Events Begin on Sept. 8

Keynote lecture and discussion to focus on 1902 Anthracite Strike, history, impact.
image of Lackawanna County Courthouse, Courtroom 3 during 1902 Anthracite Labor Strike.
Historic image of Courtroom 3 in the Lackawanna County Courthouse during the 1902 Anthracite Labor Strike courtesy of the Lackawanna Historical Society.

The “Scranton’s Story, Our Nation’s Story” project, a National Endowment for the Humanities-funded initiative of The University of Scranton with the support of community partner organizations, continues this fall with a series of community programming. The first fall 2022 event, “The 1902 Anthracite Strike: Causes and Consequences, A 120th Anniversary Evaluation,” will feature a keynote lecture with Anthracite historian and sociologist, Dr. Robert Wolensky, a respondent panel and discussion. It is planned for Thursday, Sept. 8 at 5:30 p.m. in the Lackawanna County Courthouse. Registration is required at:

This event will take place in Courtroom 3 of the Lackawanna County Courthouse, the historic location of the arbitration for the 1902 strike that had President Theodore Roosevelt in attendance. Dr. Wolensky's keynote on the 1902 labor strike in Scranton, Pennsylvania, will be followed by remarks from respondent panelists, and a moderated conversation with Q&A. 

Dr. Wolensky will provide insights into the history of labor and industry of the region by highlighting factors that led to the 1902 strike, resulting labor laws, and the experiences of marginalized groups within the labor movement. A Professor Emeritus of Sociology at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, Dr. Wolensky also serves as Adjunct Professor History at King’s College, Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, and has published several books on the area’s history and culture. 

After the keynote presentation, respondents will discuss how the complexities surrounding the 1902 strike can provide insights into the present and future of labor, and the economy for Scranton and the nation. Respondent panelists are Melissa R. Meade, Ph.D., Visiting Assistant Professor of Communication, Allegheny College and founder of "The Anthracite Coal Region of Northeastern Pennsylvania Digital Project," a public digital humanities forum that she continues to maintain, and Paige Gebhardt Cognetti, Mayor of Scranton.

This event, the first in the theme "From the Industrial Revolution to Act 47 & Beyond,” begins a fall slate in continuation of the “Scranton’s Story, Our Nation’s Story” project.

Additional theme events in Scranton will include:

  • A Shop on Every Corner: Memories of the Garment Industry" Film Screening & Discussion, with historian Dr. Ken Wolensky and filmmaker Maureen McGuigan, on Wednesday, Sept. 21, 7 to 8:30 p.m. at the Ritz Theater & Performing Arts Center, 

  • “Weaving the Past into the Future: Scranton Lace Tour,” in collaboration with the Center for the Living City, on Saturday, Oct.15, at the Laceworks Village,1315 Meylert Ave.; check-in,1:30 p.m., event, 2 to 3 p.m., 

  • a connected exhibition “Time and Lace: A History of the Scranton Lace Company,” at The Hope Horn Gallery, Sept. 2 through 30, with an opening during First Friday Scranton, Sept. 2, from 5 to 9 p.m., and

  • a Curator’s Lecture, on Friday, Sept. 16, at The University of Scranton, Brennan Hall 228, from 5 to 6:00 p.m., followed by a Public Reception in Hyland 407 from 6 to 8:00 p.m.

Fall events will continue with an additional theme launching late fall: "From "Immigrant" to Citizen."

About 'Scranton's Story, Our Nation's Story' 

The "Scranton's Story, Our Nation's Story" project launched in October 2021, with events focusing on the inaugural them "Portrait of Scranton, Portrait of a Nation," including a Jane Jacobs Walk on Scranton's downtown Lackawanna Avenue, and a keynote lecture with prolific Scranton-born author Jay Parini.

Events continued through winter 2022, with the project's second theme, "The U.S. Citizen and the American Founding," featuring a book discussion, humanities discussion with scholars Annelein De Dijn and Aziz Rana, and a community dialogue.

The project launched its third theme, "The Indigenous History of NEPA" in spring 2022, and will continue with events in November, including a special keynote lecture. Curtis Zunigha, enrolled member of the Delaware Tribe of Indians and co-founder/co-director of the Lenape Center will speak on Nov. 17, at The University of Scranton, DeNaples Center Ballroom, at 7 p.m.

For more information, and to view upcoming events and recordings of past events, please visit

Questions? Contact or call 570-941-4419.

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