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Monday: 9:00 AM — 5:00 PM, Tuesday: 9:00 AM — 5:00 PM, Wednesday: 9:00 AM — 5:00 PM, Thursday: 9:00 AM — 5:00 PM, Friday: 9:00 AM — 5:00 PM, Saturday: 9:00 AM — 5:00 PM, Sunday: 12:00 PM — 5:00 PM
  • Ephrata Cloister

    Winter History Class

Winter History Class WILL BE HELD today, January 31.

The Winter History Class is among our most popular programs, filled not only with great information, but wonderful fellowship which makes the cold winter months fly by quickly.  As usual, the class will be held in the Ephrata Cloister Visitor Center each Thursday morning from 9:00 a.m. until noon.  The first session will be offered on Thursday, January 31, 2019.

SNOW POLICY:  We will try to hold class whenever possible.  If winter weather forces a change, check the television or radio and listen for the actions of the Ephrata Area School District.  If the Ephrata schools are delayed two hours or closed, our class is canceled for the day.  We will attempt to make a special announcement on the WGAL Channel 8 television station, and you can always check their website at  In the event that our class is canceled, we will make every attempt to reschedule the speakers.  You can also check our website after 8:00 a.m.

Current members of the Ephrata Cloister Associates are admitted to all 9 sessions for a total of $45.00 and the general public is invited to attend the classes for $55.00 .  If you’d rather pay for only one or two days, the fee is $10.00 per day. 

January 31:

A. Introduction of this year’s History Class program

     Michael Showalter, Museum Educator

B. Henry Rankin Poore

     Kerry Mohn, Curator

February 7:

A. Anna Thoma at Ephrata

     Lydia Jones, Visitor Services

B. Interpreting Religion in Museums

     Barbara Franco, Former Executive Director of PA Historical & Museum Commission

February 14:

A. “Pages of a Mystical Character”: New Perspectives on Interpreting Pennsylvania German Frakturschrift Manuscripts, and Pennsylvania’s Place in American Religious History

     Dr. Alex L. Ames, Collections Engagement Manager at The Rosenbach / Free Library of Philadelphia

February 21:

A. Using DNA to Extend the Family Backgrounds

     Darvin Martin

B. The Identification, Care, and Preservation of Historical Photographs

     Linda Lies, Editor of Pennsylvania History Journal

February 28:

Lancaster County’s African American History

     Dr. Leroy Hopkins, Millersville University, retired

March 7: 

Revisiting the Founding Era

in cooperation with the Ephrata Public Library

A. The Revolutionary War

     Mike Harris, historian, author

     Sarah Alberico, curator at Rockford Plantation

B. The Peace Church Response

     Dr. John Fea, Messiah College

     Lloyd Weiler, Mennonite Historian

     Dr. Jeff Bach, Young Center for Anabaptist and Pietist Studies, Elizabethtown College

March 14:

The Rose, Lillie, Blum Sequence and Ephrata Cloister Music

     Dr. Christopher Herbert, Patterson College

March 21:

The Closing Years, 1928-1941

     Michael Showalter, Museum Educator

March 28:

A. Folks from Away: The Gimbsheim Migration to Ephrata

     Dr. Jeff Bach, Young Center for Anabaptist and Pietist Studies, Elizabethtown College

B. The Making of a Hymnal—Zionitischer Weihrauchshuegel

     Dr. Hedda Durnbaugh, Hymnologist, Juniata College


Ephrata Cloister

Administered by the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission:
Tom Wolf, Governor – Nancy Moses, Chair – Andrea Lowery, Executive Director

Ephrata Cloister is one of 26 historic sites and museums on the Pennsylvania Trail of History. For more information or to request a free 24-page visitor guide, visit or phone toll free 1-866-PATRAIL.

The Ephrata Cloister Associates is a non-profit organization that works in partnership with the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission, supporting the mission of preservation and education at this National Historic Landmark.