Website provides genealogical, historical info about Titusville

From staff reports

Started almost three years ago as a partnership between the Benson Memorial Library, Drake Well Museum, Titusville High School Alumni Association and the Titusville Historical Society, the Titusville PA Heritage Connection website brings together these organizations in one place online to help anyone seeking genealogical and historical information about Titusville.

The site was funded initially from a Community Fellows Grant from Clarion University of Pennsylvania with participation from a faculty member and graduate students.

“Clarion University Department of Information and Library Science is invested in our community cultural heritage collections,” said Rhonda Clark, associate professor. “We are very excited to have been a part of the founding of this digital portal for collaborative work among historical, archival and library organizations in Titusville.”

The website includes basic information on and directions to resources such as census records, city directories, family and county histories, maps, newspapers, yearbooks, genealogy help, Titusville history, vital records and cemeteries. Two other main features of the website are the online exhibits and collections. Both of these features showcase digitized images and documents relevant to our community’s rich local history.

The first of online exhibit offered through the Titusville PA Heritage Connection is dedicated to the Cederquist family and was prepared by the Benson Memorial Library. The Cederquist family gave permission to the Benson Memorial Library to feature the images used in this exhibit. Originally from Sweden, the Cederquists built a life and legacy in Titusville that is celebrated in this exhibit.

The first additions to the online collections come from the archives at Drake Well Museum and feature historic photographs by John Mather. The other organizations that are part of the Titusville PA Heritage Connection will be adding online exhibits and collections that will be updated on an ongoing basis. The website also provides access to the recently-published Titusville Design Guide for Historic Structures, a PHMC grant-funded document for the City of Titusville that provides information on renovating old houses, including advice for first priorities in renovation plans, identification of historic features worth saving, and practical advice on repairs with an eye to cost and retention of character.

“Over the past few years the Benson Memorial Library has made it a priority to help all residents in our community get more in touch with their local roots and community,” said Justin Hoenke, executive director of Benson Memorial Library. “The Titusville PA Heritage Connection is such an important step forward because it not only provides a great entry point for any community members to start their journey, but it also brings together so many great organizations in our community whose mission is to help preserve and share the history of our amazing community.”

“We are excited to see an avenue for the publication of local historical materials. The new design guidelines really need this exposure, as they bring a great resource to those who want to renovate homes with an eye to historic detail. We are looking forward to putting up digital exhibits from our historical photographs and artifacts, currently housed at the downtown Heritage Center,” said Chris Fiely, president of Titusville Historical Society

More information is available at