The Bucks County Historical and Literary Journal


Neshaminy, The Bucks County Historical and Literary Journal, seeks a nationwide audience, and is a joint effort of the Doylestown Historical Society and the Bucks County Writers Workshop. In addition to the editorial staff, the journal has a nine-member advisory panel to help evaluate submissions. General submissions are welcome, and while the material must touch on some aspect of historic Bucks County, it must also be of interest to a far-reaching range of readers.

In addition to verifiable non-fiction, the journal includes historically-based fiction, biographies, memoirs, interviews, poems, and art. Neshaminy publishes twice a year in April and October.

The journal may be purchased from in either print or digital versions, and, in Bucks County, from local bookshops, the Doylestown Historical Society, and other selected outlets.

Fall/Winter 2020

Volume 2 Number 1



• A Note from the Publisher: Stuart Abramson
• Editor’s Introduction: David L. Updike
• Biography: “The Things Joseph Pickett Left Behind”: William J. Donahue
• Memoir: Sketch of Doylestown (plus sidebar by the editors): James A. Michener [never published before]
• Biography: “Knight of the Loyal Heart: The Strange Death of Ralcy Husted Bell”: Don Swaim
• Poetry: “Two Poems”: Matilda Bray
• History: “Fear and Expectation: A Theatrical Experiment”: Daniel Dorian [history and future of the Bucks County Playhouse]
• Poetry: “Say Their Names”: Amy Liu
• Fiction: “Midnight in Solebury”: William J. O’Toole Jr.
• Poetry: “The Rose” [originally published 1823]: William C. Ely
• Biography: “The House Dorothy Parker Lived In”: Don Swaim [exclusive photos]
• About the Contributors

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Neshaminy book cover

Fall/Winter 2019

Volume 1 Number 1


• Publisher’s Note
• Managing Editor’s Note
• Poem: Nishën Mene (Neshaminy Creek) by H. A. Callum
• Fiction: The World Famous Bucks County Casino by William O’Toole
• Biography: Oscar Hammerstein, Highland Farm, and the Sound of Music: by Natalie Zellat Dyen
• Fiction: Behind the Rebellion by David Jarret
• History/Fiction: Cudjo’s Relegation by Flip of Guinea by Will Kirk
• History/Fiction: December Sunday, 1941 by Don Swaim
• Fiction: One April Day by Linda Wisniewski
• Fiction: The Battle of Paunacussing Creek by David Jarret
• History: The Lenape Stone by Don Swaim
• Poem: Portrait of Dorothy Parker by Connie Wrzesniewski
• Fiction: Recovered Diary Entries of Pearl S. Buck by Rachel Leopold and Reema Kalidindi, Central Bucks H.S. South
• Interview: James A. Michener by Don Swaim
• About the Contributors

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Neshaminy book cover


Length should be no more than 6000 words. May be of any genre — non-fiction, fiction, biography, memoir, poetry — but must pertain to some aspect of Bucks County — and yet must be of interest to any reader, anywhere, even those unfamiliar with this historic region. Submissions must be properly formatted Word documents (double-spaced, 12-point serif type, etc.). Submissions will be judged on the basis of storytelling, quality, clarity, interest, and relevance to Bucks County. A contributor’s copy is given to the author of each submission used in the journal.

Authors published in Neshaminy retain their rights to reproduce, distribute, and revise their own works in any format as long as attribution to Neshaminy is included.

Electronic submissions only. Email with attachment to —



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NESHAMINY. Vol 2, No. 1, Fall/Winter 2020 (to come)

This issue was intended for publication in April 2020, but was pushed back because of the pandemic. The pub date is now expected to be September 25, 2020

EXCLUSIVES in the coming Fall/Winter 2020 issue:
• A recently discovered essay by JAMES A. MICHENER never published in full before. Michener, in the five-page typescript dated September 8, 1987, recounts his youthful years in Doylestown between 1907 (the year of his birth) and the early 1920s. It was found among the papers of the late Lester Trauch, a friend of Michener’s and a long-time reporter for the Doylestown Intelligencer. Apparently, the essay was intended for publication in the newspaper, but was somehow overlooked until now.

• The first photographs of the Dorothy Parker House in Tinicum Township, Bucks County, since the 1940s. After the famous wit, writer, and poet sold the house in 1946, it went through a series of owners. It is now beautifully restored and is the property of a private owner, who invited writer Don Swaim on a tour.

• “Knight of the Loyal Heart: The Strange Death of Ralcy Husted Bell”: Murder, suicide, or an accident? Once a prominent author, Bell in 1931 was found dead of a shotgun blast in his Centre Bridge, Bucks County, home where he had erected a booby-trap to thwart intruders.

• The story and future of the famed Bucks County Playhouse by Daniel Dorian.

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All-virtual event, September 25, 26, 27
Both the Bucks County Writers Workshop and the Doylestown Historical Society are hoping to have a presence at this year’s virtual event, depending on circumstances and how the fest is structured.

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Where To Buy Neshaminy

Neshaminy‘s inaugural issue published in October 2019. Available from: Amazon as well as at Bucks County, PA, area bookstores.

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Pat Achilles

An artist’s view of the famed Neshaminy Creek — with a Lenape Indian by the water.

Check Pat’s home page at: Achilles Portfolio

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Ron Moran, photographer extraordinaire

Ron Moran 1950-2020.
Ron, of Fairless Hills, PA, died March 1, 2020, at the age of 69. Born in Philadelphia, he was a veteran of the Army National Guard, a tour bus driver for Starr Tours, and a highly talented photographer who volunteered his talents to the Doylestown Historical Society as the staff photographer. His multitudes of photos of the Neshaminy Creek are expected to grace the journal’s cover for as long as there is a journal.
Check Ron’s page on Facebook

Ron was Neshaminy‘s staff photographer

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The awards, totalling $500 in cash prizes, were announced on August 1, 2019, by Nathan Halter, a member of the journal’s nine-member advisory panel.

Winning Entries
1) World Famous Bucks County Casino — Bill O’Toole
2) Oscar Hammerstein, Highland Farm, and the Sound of Music — Natalie Dyen
3) Behind the Rebellion — David Jarret

Honorable Mentions
4) December Sunday 1941 — Don Swaim
5) (tie) The Battle of Paunacussing Creek — David Jarret
5) (tie) The Lenape Stone — Don Swaim
6) (tie) Cudjo’s Relegation — Wil Kirk
6) (tie) One April Day — Linda Wisniewski

Article in the Bucks County Herald. READ HERE

Neshaminy book authors l-r: Don Swaim, Stu Abramson, David Updike, Bill Donahue

Neshaminy Editorial Staff


Stuart Abramson, President, Doylestown Historical Society

Executive Editor

Don Swaim, Founder, Bucks County Writers Workshop

Managing Editor

David Updike

Associate Editors

Bill Donahue, Bill Stieg


Pat Achilles


Ron Moran (1950-2020)

Advisory Panel

Carol Breslin, Colleen Dunn, Ann Kaler, Wayne Lahr, Jennifer Lin, Amy Mazzanti, Damian McNicholl

Original Magazine Design by Rebecca Quinn