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May 19, 2021
Milestones: Our Stories of Origin
Small business are the heart and soul of Lancaster City. We salute them for the courage, strength, and innovation that not only saw them through last year, but has made Lancaster County a model for tenacity and ingenuity.
Below are 22 inspiring stories of heart and hard-won success. They are both heroes and stewards, and they make our city what it is. Whether their time in the city has spanned decades or just a few years, their stories of origin remind us of our history and make us stronger as we look to the future and continue to love local.
Like public television stations across the country, WITF’s origins are rooted in the lengthy struggle to bring noncommercial educational and instructional television to the airwaves. In 1963, the South Central Educational Broadcasting Council was born, and within a year of its creation, the Council had succeeded in its mission. In July of 1964, the station’s first staff artist, Florence Starr Taylor, suggested the call letters “ITF” for “It’s Top Flight,” to convey the quality of the new enterprise. Those letters, and the meaning behind them, stuck.
WITF TV first signed on the air on November 16, 1964, bringing free, educational television to classrooms and living rooms throughout Central Pennsylvania. Since 1964, WITF has held steadfast to its roots; inspiring lifelong learning by connecting people and communities of Pennsylvania through trusted journalism, thoughtful discussion, and educational experiences.
After being discharged from the Navy at the end of WWII, Jim’s father went to work, along with his two brothers, at Berks Optical on Orange Street in Lancaster. After working his way up to Vice President, he left in 1964 to open his own business. By the time he retired in 1991, Albright Opticians had expanded to five stores in Lancaster and Wilmington, Delaware. Today, it is owned and managed by his son, Jim Albright, and offers comprehensive eye exams, contact lenses, fashionable frames, sports glasses, sunglasses, and industrial safety glasses.