Plans continue for Cresson Sanatorium
By Justin Eger of Mainline Newspapers
As a significant piece of Cresson’s history,
the tuberculosis sanatorium on the top of the mountain has many stories
surrounding it. Some came from those who worked there, others from
patients who spent weeks, months, or years recuperating at the state-run
facility. Over the last two years, Chuck Felton has dedicated part
of his retirement to collecting those stories, adding them to a website
organized as a tribute to "The San." Himself a one-time
patient at the Sanatorium, Felton’s recollections formed the
basis of the site, but it soon became much more than his own personal
memories, instead becoming a full-blown tribute to a major part of
Cresson’s past, one that many people from throughout the area
have added to since first learning about Felton and his mission.
The year 2013 will mark the 100th anniversary of the
Cresson Sanatorium, and while that date is significant, no less so
is the ability to share the stories surviving from the San right now.
With that in mind, many patients, staff, and families of those who
knew the San will descend on Cresson in the coming months, celebrating
the significant history of the facility with a reunion of sorts, bringing
Felton and all those with stories like his together in celebration
of their shared pasts.
The Cresson Sanatorium Reunion will be held on August 6 and August
7, with plans for an evening dinner on Saturday and a Sunday luncheon.
Both events will be held at the Cresson American Legion’s Admiral
Peary room, though an additional part of the reunion will take place
at Union Cemetery, where many victims of TB were buried following
their passing at the sanatorium. At the cemetery, attendees are welcome
to take part in a memorial service remembering those who suffered
from TB, with a wreath to be placed by the survivors. At the dinner
on the preceding evening, attendees will be invited to share their
stories during an open microphone portion of the event. All of the
August events will be filmed, as WQED is planning to construct a 30-minute
documentary of the sanatorium which will include information provided
during the reunion.
While some people have already
signed up to attend the reunion, tickets are now available to the
general public, and will remain so until July 25. Tickets, which are
prepay and non-refundable, will be sold on a first-come, first-served
basis, as seating at the events is limited. Tickets for the Saturday
buffet dinner are $25 per person and $15 per person for the Sunday
luncheon. Checks can be made payable to Cresson San Reunion, and may
be mailed to Dave Huber 521 East Sample Street, Ebensburg, PA 15931
to reserve tickets. For a ticket order form and detailed information
about the reunion is available at http://www.feltondesignanddata.com/cressontbsanatoriumremembered
can also review the information and stories collected by Felton over
the last two years.