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Third issue of the Neshaminy Journal is launched

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The pandemic was a long, difficult process for all of us to endure, but for some it produced a literary state of mind. It became a catalyst for those who craved a connection to creativity.

With that said, the third issue of the Neshaminy Journal, spring/summer 2021 edition, was launched. It’s available in the Doylestown and Lahaska bookshops, the Washington Crossing Mercantile Museum and on Amazon; however, it’s most conveniently found in its home at the Doylestown Historical Society House.

“It is the first of its kind and the only one of its kind,” said Stuart Abramson, publisher. “It is modeled after the 143-year-old Pennsylvania Historical Society Journal.”

“The Journal did not happen organically, it was the result of weeks and weeks of planning,” said Don Swaim, executive editor. Swaim is responsible for giving the journal its Native American name, Neshaminy, after the creek which flows through Bucks County.

“It is open to all types of writing,” said Bill Donahue, managing editor. “Anyone is welcome to contribute. History, fiction, biography, poetry and memoir, though other material is acceptable as long as it is associated with Pennsylvania.”

With the pandemic slowly fading, the staff hopes for a large part of local schools to be represented as students return.

The idea of a literary and historical journal was first conceived when Abramson, president of the Doylestown Historical Society, and Don Swaim, founder of the Bucks County Writers’ Workshop, met at Bookfest, an annual Doylestown event.


“After setting ambitious goals, including putting together an impressive team of volunteers, the first issue of Neshaminy became a reality in October 2018,” said Abramson.

The latest issue includes biographies such as “Robert Beck: A Painter Grapples With History” by Daniel Dorian, “Lassie Come-Home” and “Chorus of the Cane” by Don Swaim, “The Door Between: The Divided Selves of Pearl S. Buck” by D. Constance Wrzesniewski, and “Stephen Sondheim: Composer, Lyricist, Student, Teacher” by Natalie Zellat Dyan, .

An interview with novelist Jenni L. Walsh, contributed by William J. Donahue, can also be found in the spring/summer issue, alongside a sprinkling of poetry by W. S. Merwin, John Watson and Darlene Versak.

The history selection includes “Doan Outlaws: The Plumstead Cowboys” by Jennifer Rogers, while Jim Brennan wrote a fiction piece titled “American Shad” to bring the journal to a resounding finale.

Graphic designer John Errichetti worked closely with Donahue on the layout and design. The front cover is a contribution of photographer Ron Moran, who has since passed on, leaving behind a plethora of his photos of Bucks County. Illustrator Pat Achilles added artistry with illustrations of Lassie, Sondheim and Pearl S. Buck. Bill Steig, Melissa D. Sullivan and David L. Updike are the associate editors that worked to make this issue a success.

These people contribute their work to the journal as volunteers, as do the writers.


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