Harmony Things to Do

  • Things to Do
    by Ewingjr98
  • Things to Do
    by Ewingjr98
  • Things to Do
    by Ewingjr98

Best Rated Things to Do in Harmony

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    The Harmony Inn

    by VeronicaG Updated Sep 14, 2008

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    I'm placing The Harmony Inn in this category because it's a very interesting site. Not only can you take a peek at this Italianate-style home, but enjoy a meal, too.

    This was once the residence of Austin Pearce, who constructed it in 1856. He not only was a railroad executive at the PNC&E Railroad, but a banker and mill operator, as well.

    After enduring financial difficulties, Pearce sold his home to the Ziegler family who established it as a hotel and saloon. The Ziegler's were descendants of Mennonites who traveled here after Georg Rapp's Harmonite society moved on.

    In 1985, Carl Beers and Gary and Betsy Barnes took ownership of the Inn. Their intent was to restore the 'grandness of its past'.The Inn has a colorful history, which you can read about once you visit.

    The cuisine is American, with Mexican and German specialties.
    Example: Spinach, Crab & Artichoke Dip appetizer ($7.95)

    Harmony Shrimp Basket-8 jumbo butterfly shrimp lightly fried, served with fries, lemon and cocktail sauce ($7.95)

    Chicken Ranch Wrap ($7.95)

    Jumbo Lump Crab Cakes sauteed golden brown and served with garlic ($17.95)

    Burrito Bouderado-a huge burrito stuffed with beef, beans and rice, smothered in red chlii sauce, topped with lettuce, tomatoes, black olives,melted cheese and sour cream ($10.95)

    A pretty outdoor patio surrounded by tall trees, accented with a pretty fountain creates a peaceful oasis from a day of viewing historic homes and shopping for antiques.

    Address: 230 Mercer St., Harmony, Pa.

    Phone: 724-452-5124

    Website: http://www.historicharmonyinn.com

    The Harmony Inn Outdoor dining area
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    Log Cabins About Town

    by VeronicaG Updated Sep 5, 2008

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    The historic district of Harmony is small enough that you can park your car and walk to the most interesting sites. These four cabins I've pictured are all within walking distance to each other. My suggestion is to start with the Harmony Museum Main & Mercer Streets, then begin your walking tour.

    pic #1 1805 Log House
    pic #2 A Rustic Log House
    pic #3 The Ziegler Log House
    pic #4 1804 Waldman House

    Some of these log structures were moved from nearby locations, others were situated in Harmony but on other streets and reassembled at their present site.

    FYI: I found this interesting. According to research, the Harmonists log homes in Harmony do not appear 'mass produced' or consistently alike as those in their second location in New Harmony, Indiana.

    Address: Harmony, Pennsylvania

    Directions: Main and Mercer Streets

    1805 Log House Rustic Log House Ziegler Log House 1804 Waldman House
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    George Washington Was Here...

    by VeronicaG Updated Sep 10, 2008

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    George Washington and his intrepid guide, Christopher Gist, traipsed through Butler County in 1753. It is thought his very footsteps came through this area as he made his way to Fort Le Boeuf near Lake Erie.

    His mission was to take Governor Robert Dinwiddie's message to the French demanding they withdraw from British Territory.

    A Delaware Indian village sat where Harmony is located now. Washington and Gist slept here on November 30 on their way to the fort. They also stopped here on their return trip, where they took on some French Indians to guide them to the Forks of the Ohio river. One attempted to shoot at Washington after leading him astray...thankfully he missed.

    When I was a member of our local historic society, our president worked hard to obtain a plaque marking Washington's Route in our nearby community of Cranberry Township. Now those wanting to follow in his footsteps can look for signs all throughout Butler County which show approximately where he journeyed.

    Address: Harmony, Pennsylvania

    Directions: throughout Butler County, Pennsylvania

    Washington Trail
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    The German Christmas Market and Other Events

    by VeronicaG Updated Sep 5, 2008

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    People look forward to the many events The Harmony Museum hosts each year. If you're a gardener, I'm sure you'd enjoy their annual Herb and Garden Fair held in the Spring. Or maybe you're adept at sewing, for if you are you might just want to attend the "Make a Quilt in a Day'" class.

    We love the candlelight tours one often finds scheduled over the Christmas holidays. The Harmony Museum opens their doors all decked for the occasion and the tour might just include a log house or two nearby. A popular dinner given at this time of year is now an anticipated part of the festivities, but reservations need be made ahead by phoning the museum.

    Tying in with the above mentioned, the annual German Christmas Market is offered in November bringing 'authentic German gift items' from Berks County, Pennsylvania.

    Some of these items are Christmas ornaments, decorative wood boxes, cuckoo clocks, Santa figures called German Belsnickles, incense burners known as smokers, decorative texts announcing births or baptisms referred to as 'fraktur' and many, many other things.

    If you come hungry you'll want to sample some German fare, which will nicely complete the picture!

    *photo borrowed from Harmony Museum website

    Address: 218 Mercer St. Harmony, Pa.

    Directions: at The Harmony Museum

    Phone: 1-888-821-4822

    Website: http://www.harmonymuseum.org

    The German Christmas Market
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    A Look at The Harmonists

    by VeronicaG Updated Sep 5, 2008

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    The Harmony Museum is always a highlight when visiting this historic village. The collection of artifacts include those of Harmonite and Mennonite heritage, plus there are rooms displaying a typical Harmonite kitchen, wine cellar with interesting arched ceiling and a Victorian room.

    A local gunsmith,Charles Flowers, made 'percussion long rifles' in the 1800's from his shop a few blocks from Harmony's square. Some of his rifles were greatly detailed with silver or brass plates. Sadly, his home and shop are long gone, but it's fortuitous that some of his creations remain.

    Harmony was once a Delaware* Indian village, so Indian artifacts have been found and are on display. I remember farmers mentioning at local historical society gatherings that when they plowed their fields, many arrowheads turned up. They learned to recognize the glint from the stone as they examined their fields.

    Through the years my husband and I have joined in on some of the events held here. The museum and square come alive during those occasions. People visit from all over Pennsylvania and beyond.

    *The Delaware were also referred to as the Lenni Lenape and Shawnees

    Hours areTuesday-Sunday from 1pm-4pm. Closed on Mondays and holidays.

    Address: 218 Mercer St., Harmony, Pa

    Directions: Located about 29-30 miles North of Pittsburgh

    Phone: 1-888-821-4822

    Website: http://www.harmonymuseum.org

    The Harmony Museum
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    The Harmony Public School

    by VeronicaG Updated Sep 5, 2008

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    Traveling up Mercer Street going the opposite direction from the Harmony Museum and beyond Grace Church, you'll see the old 1882 Harmony Public School, which now functions as the post office building. See pic #2 for the school bell.

    I'm not sure when this particular building's use changed, but I do know that as a student I attended the newly constructed Seneca Valley High School for my 10th-12th year located beyond the historic district, in outlying farmland.

    Although I give Pittsburgh as my hometown, I actually grew up 20 miles North of the city in a community known as Cranberry Township (about 9 miles or so from Harmony). School systems were combined when Seneca Valley was completed. So this is part of my old stomping ground!

    Address: Mercer Street, Harmony, Pa.

    Directions: About 1 mile from Zelienople and about 29-30 miles from Pittsburgh

    Harmony Public School School Bell
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    The Wagner-Bentel House

    by VeronicaG Updated Sep 11, 2008

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    This austere looking brick home is the Wagner Bentle House, erected for two sisters and their family members. This duplex sits next door to the Harmony Museum. The interior has two stone fireplaces, but only one chimney.

    Upon entry you'll find a display on doctoring in the 19th and 20th centuries. Also, note the historic clock which once kept time in the Meetinghouse tower. Old homes are appealing to me--I love the scent of aged wood and the echo of footsteps on wood planked floors.

    The Harmony Museum has restored this home and now uses it as a gift shop (pic #2). You can find crafts, books and souvenirs here.

    Hours are Tuesday-Sunday 1pm-4pm; closed Mondays and Holidays

    Address: Mercer Street, Harmony, Pa.

    Directions: Next to the Harmony Museum

    Phone: 1-888-821-4822

    Website: http://www.harmonymuseum.org

    The Wagner-Bentel Home Entrance to the home/gift shop
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    Historic Harmony Mennonite Cemetery

    by Ewingjr98 Written Nov 28, 2011

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    Historic Harmony's burial ground has been a Mennonite cemetery since the Mennonites purchased the town from the Harmonist Society of George Rapp in 1814. The earliest grave markers date from the 1810s and the newest markers are from the 1950s. Many of the stones are very worn and difficult to read. Most of those buried here have good German names like Fiedler, Hallstein, Hunsberger, Musselman, Rodenbach, Schaffer, Schantz, Schwartz, Stauffer, Weisz and Zeigler.

    A full list of the tombstones is located here: http://www.usgwarchives.org/pa/butler/tombstones/harmonymennonite-jackson.htm

    Website: http://www.usgwarchives.org/pa/butler/tombstones/harmonymennonite-jackson.htm

    The cemetery at night... see any ghosts?

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    Harmony Mennonite Meetinghouse

    by Ewingjr98 Updated Nov 28, 2011

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    Harmony's Mennonite Meetinghouse is the oldest Mennonite meeting house west of the Alleghenies, built in 1825 next to the cemetery. About two thirds of the structure is original, and the remainder of the building was added later. The interior of the structure is laid out with a central altar and benches for the parishioners, much as it must have been in its early days. The meeting house is available for rent for about $150 a day.



    Mennonite Meetinghouse

    Mennonites from eastern Pennsylvania began settling the Harmony area in 1815 and worshipped in the former Harmony Society meetinghouse or in homes until building this meeting house in 1825. The brick council room was an early addition; the cemetery dates from 1815.

    The Harmony Mennonite meetinghouse is the oldest west of the Alleghenies and is believed to be the most original early Mennonite meetinghouse in the nation. Its design may have been influenced by the 1755 Hereford meetinghouse, Berks County, from which came Bishop John Boyer in 1816. Men entered at front, women at the side; men sat on one side, probably to the right, women on the other.

    The congregation dwindled as descendants joined other churches or moved away, and regular services ceased in 1902. The last minister, Rev. Joseph Ziegler, youngest son of Abraham Ziegler, died in 1904.

    The Mennonite sect is named for 16th century Dutch reformer Menno Simons. It descends from Anabaptist, evangelical Reformation Protestants who didn't baptize children, were pacifist and believed in separation of church and state. Major migrations of European Mennonites fleeing persecution or militarism included Swiss to eastern Pennsylvania, and Alsatians, Germans and Swiss to western Pennsylvania, the Midwest and Ontario in the Early 1800's.

    Historic Harmony Inc.

    Directions: Located on Wise Road between US 19 and Mercer Road.

    Phone: 724-452-7341

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    Harmony Museum

    by Ewingjr98 Written Nov 28, 2011

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    The Harmony Museum stands at the main intersection of central Harmony.

    The museum is owned by Historic Harmony, Inc. Founded in 1943, this local organization owns and maintains eight historic properties including the Mennonite Meetinghouse, the Mennonite Cemetery, and the Harmony Society Cemetery.

    Address: 218 Mercer St, Harmony, Pa 16037

    Phone: (724) 452-7341

    Website: http://www.harmonymuseum.org/

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    Harmony's Log Cabins

    by Ewingjr98 Updated Nov 28, 2011

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    Harmony has a number of small cabins around town. I noticed at least three, including Little Creek Cabin, which used to be a cafe (and was for sale in summer 2011). Another cabin was located right behind Grace Church. The cabins appeared to be private homes, or perhaps properties of Historic Harmony, Inc.

    Some of the cabins date back to the early 1800s and were constructed by the Harmonist Society.

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    Harmonist Society Cemetery

    by Ewingjr98 Written Sep 8, 2012

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    We visited the Harmonist Cemetery on a cold, blowing winter's night -- creepy! What's even more unusual is that this cemetery has no headstones (well, OK... one headstone).

    Harmony is a small town with a unique history, and the Harmonist Cemetery is a key part of this history. The Harmonist Society, a group of communal religious pacifist separatists, arrived in Pennsylvania from Germany in 1804. They built the town of Harmony for their community, where they lived according to their beliefs for 10 years before selling the town to Amish farmers and moving to Indiana. Later the Harmonists returned to PA, and founded the town of Economy. Because the Harmonists didn't believe in marriage, procreation, or admitting others to their society, the group soon died off and was disbanded, but their history remains.

    The Harmonist Cemetery is the final resting place for 100 members of the Harmonist Society who died during their first 10 years in America. The Harmonist Society did not believe in marking graves, so the cemetery just looks like an open rectangular field surrounded by a sturdy stone wall. The walls of the cemetery are aligned almost perfectly with the compass directions, and the east wall contains the cemetery's only gate. This amazing stone gate weighs about a ton and pivots on a single point int he middle of the gate.

    You can find an aerial image of the cemetery here: http://goo.gl/maps/uKxSL

    A sign at the cemetery reads,


    HARMONIST CEMETERY

    Burial place of Harmonist
    Society, 1805-1815. Graves
    were not marked. The stone
    wall was built in 1869,
    after the Harmonists had
    returned from Indiana and
    settled at "Old Economy,"
    in Beaver County

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    The Harmonist Cemetery

    by VeronicaG Updated Nov 17, 2008

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    It was a gloomy Fall day when Mom and I ventured out to visit the Harmonist Cemetery, which lies outside the small town of Harmony.

    This cemetery sits on a high knoll and is surrounded by a stone wall whose entrance contains a fascinating rotating gate. One good, hard push gains entrance through the revolving one-ton stone door. The public is permitted to enter the graveyard, but are urged to be respectful while visiting.

    None of the graves are marked, but records show there are at least 100 members of the Harmonist Society buried here. Since there are no tombstones to read, the most interesting features are the wall and stone gate. Combined with a trip to the Harmony Museum and the village itself, a stop here would make for an interesting historical outing.

    Address: Harmony, Pennsylvania

    The Harmonist Cemetery Cemetery Interior
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    The Mennonite Meeting House and Cemetery

    by VeronicaG Updated Nov 11, 2008

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    One of the oldest Mennonite meeting houses West of the Alleghenies sits perched upon a small hill North of Harmony, Pennsylvania. Mom and I stopped here on our way home from a 'girls getaway weekend' this Fall.

    It had rained the evening before, so the grass was a bit mushy near the site. A low wall surrounded the cemetery, whose entrance was a waist-high black iron gate. However, it would not budge as I made an effort to enter in to read the old headstones (pic#2). If it hadn't been so wet, perhaps I would have jumped the fence!!

    This meeting house was constructed in 1825 and is made of brick and stone. The brick annex was added soon after. Experts say it's a good example and most original of the early Mennonite meeting houses.

    At these meeting houses, services were always in German. The last service held in this spot was 1902.

    When combining a trip to the village of Harmony and its museum with a side trip to the Harmonist Cemetery and Mennonite Meeting House and Cemetery, you could have a very interesting afternoon!

    Address: Rt. 19, Harmony, Pennsylvania

    Mennonite Meeting House Mennonite Cemetery
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    HARMONY MUSEUM

    by mtncorg Written Oct 5, 2008

    Housed in an old Harmonist granary/warehouse that served to sell goods to outsiders, the Harmony Museum divides its exhibits between the Harmonist period and the longer subsequent Mennonite times. It is interesting to compare the architecture here to that found in Economy - the third and last Harmonist village, Bethel Missouri, and Aurora, Oregon - other Germanic Christian communal towns with strong ties to the Harmony Society. Look carefully at the carved stone lintel above the main entrance. This is the ‘Virgin Sophia’, a mystical virgin spirit or Goddess that comes up repeatedly in the writings of George Rapp. It is thought to have been carved by Frederick Rapp, the adopted son of George Rapp and an important Harmonist figure in his own right. Beneath the Museum is a large wine cellar - one of two in Harmony - with the production of wine being important to the Harmonists. On your visit to the museum, you will also be taken across the street to a Mennonite log cabin that has been moved into town from the countryside, as well as another home that served as a duplex for a pair of Harmonist sisters and their families - a gift shop is located in part of the first floor of the house. Pick up a street map of the town showing the different sites you can see - the town is small enough to cover easily on foot. Hours are Tuesday-Sunday 1-4 pm.

    Address: 218 Mercer Street P.O. Box 524 Harmony PA 16037

    Phone: 1-888-821-4822

    Website: http://www.harmonymuseum.org/

    Harmony Museum Virgin Sophia above the entrance to the Museum
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