Lackawanna County Courthouse, built 1884, postcard c. 1905. Norma Reese via Susan Pieroth

Upcoming Events

December 7, 2021 at 7 p.m. New York City Tenement House Museum (virtual)

Past Events

May 4–8, 2021 • Scranton, PA     Observe Scranton: Jane Jacobs’s First City Festival

A multi-event book launch and festival, organized by the Center for the Living City, Scranton Public Library, AIA NEPA, and Lackawanna College, brought new life to Jane Jacobs’s ideas and the history of Scranton.

May 4, 10 a.m. — Coinciding with what would have been Jane’s 105th birthday, a tribute to Jane Jacobs took place at City Hall, 340 N. Washington Ave. Scranton Mayor Paige Cognetti read the inaugural Jane Jacobs Day proclamation and presided at the Jane Jacobs flag raising.

May 4, 6:30 p.m. — Book Launch: author Glenna Lang gave a talk and slide presentation at the theater at Lackawanna College, formerly Central High School, which Jane Butzner (Jacobs) attended. Mayor Paige Cognetti spoke prior to the presentation of “Jane Jacobs’s Scranton and Its Reverberations.”

May 5, 2 p.m. — Jane Jacobs Walk: Explore Historic Forest Hill Cemetery and Find Who in Jane Jacobs’s First City Is Buried There. The cemetery’s caretaker and archivist, Norma Reese, led a fascinating tour of Scranton’s first landscaped cemetery, founded in 1870. Within the beautiful grounds overlooking the city, participants were introduced to some of the 18,000 people laid to rest. African Americans and Caucasians, coal barons and miners, and immigrants from the world over have always been buried side by side here. Author of Jane Jacobs’s First City, Glenna Lang, accompanied the walk.

May 5, 5:15 p.m. — Jane Jacobs Walk: The Architecture and History of Lackawanna Avenue in Central City. Architect and local historian Richard Leonori led a several block walk along Scranton’s main downtown street, laid out as part of the original plan for the city in the 1850s. He discussed the origins of its beautiful historic buildings and the efforts to preserve and restore them. Author of Jane Jacobs’s First City, Glenna Lang, accompanied him.

May 5, 6:15 p.m. — Book Signing at Library Express Bookstore, Marketplace at Steamtown Mall, Scranton. Glenna Lang signed copies of Jane Jacobs’s First City. Sales from Library Express Bookstore, Scranton, benefit the Lackawanna County Library System.

May 6, 5:30 p.m. — Book Reading with Glenna Lang and Scranton community members read passages and commented on topics they chose from Jane Jacobs’s First City. Maria MacDonald, Center for the Living City; Madison Hunter, Girl Scouts of Scranton; Cathy Ann Strader Hardaway, Director of Domestic Relations, Lackawanna County, and Commissioner of the Martin Luther King Commission; Bill Walczak, member of Scranton 1930s huckster family; Ginger Goodrich, Scranton Chamber of Commerce.

May 8, 10 a.m. — Jane Jacobs Walk: Walking in the Footsteps of Jane Butzner (Jacobs). Longtime architect and Dunmorean John Cowder retraced Jane’s routes to her neighborhood school, the potato chip factory in the alley, and other mom-and-pop stores she and her family and friends frequented. Participants discovered commercial sites and homes associated with Jane still in existence today, and learned about those that did not survive the ravages of time. Author of Jane Jacobs’s First City, Glenna Lang, accompanied the walk.

Graphic for book reading - jane jacobs's first city book launch in scranton