Bucks County

Bucks County (pop. 625,249) is east of Montgomery County, in the southeastern corner of the state. It’s the fourth-most-populous county in Pennsylvania, and has been growing in every decade since 1790.

The only Bucks County in the U.S., it was named for the short version of the English county of Buckinghamshire.

The county seat of Bucks County is Doylestown (pop. 8,380), birthplace (in 1979) of the singer Pink.

Born Alecia Beth Moore

Oscar Hammerstein II, lyricist of such Broadway musicals as “Show Boat,” “Carousel,” and “The Sound of Music,” lived at Highland Farm in Doylestown from 1940 until his death in 1960. He was born in New York City in 1895.

Richard Rodgers on left

Fonthill Castle in Doylestown, built in 1908 for archaeologist and tile maker Henry Chapman Mercer, was constructed of poured-in-place concrete. It has 44 rooms and 10 bathrooms.

Open for tours

The largest community in Bucks County is Levittown (pop. 52,983), planned and built by Levitt and Sons in the 1950s, shortly after the first Levittown (on Long Island) was built.

There were six models of homes.

Bucks County has 10 covered bridges that are still open to traffic.

Cabin Run Covered Bridge (1871)

The borough of Yardley (pop. 2,434) has a house made of shipping containers.

In Bensalem Township, outside a casino and racetrack, is a 34-foot-long, 25-ton statue of a severed horse’s head.

For “Godfather” fans


Pennsylvania: Montgomery County

Montgomery County (pop. 799,884), located just northwest of Philadelphia, is Pennsylvania’s third-largest county in population. It is commonly known as “Montco.”

It is one of 18 Montgomery counties, and one of the 14 named for Richard Montgomery (1738-1775), major general in the Continental Army in the Revolutionary War.

The county seat of Montgomery County is Norristown (pop. 34,324).

Courthouse (1854)

Longtime Los Angeles Dodgers manager Tommy Lasorda was born in Norristown in 1927.

The community of Glenside is the home of the Keswick Theatre, built in 1928.

Glenside is the home of Arcadia University, a private, liberal arts school with about 4,000 students, founded in 1853. Campus buildings include Grey Towers Castle, built in 1893 as part of a private estate.

Now offices and student housing

In the community of Elkins Park is Beth Sholom Congregation, the only synagogue designed by Frank Lloyd Wright.

Completed in 1959

The community of Bryn Athyn (pop. 1,375) is the home of the Glencairn Museum, formerly a private home. It was built from 1928 to 1939.

90 rooms on 10 floors

In the community of Plymouth Meeting (pop. 6,177), the Church on the Mall is located within the Plymouth Meeting shopping mall.

The Three Stooges Museum is in the borough of Ambler.




Pennsylvania: Philadelphia City and County

Philadelphia (pop. 1,526,009) is the largest city in Pennsylvania and sixth-largest city in the U.S. The city and Philadelphia County (largest county in the state) have been coterminous since 1854.

Philadelphia City Hall, 548 feet tall with a statue of city founder William Penn on top, was the tallest habitable building in the world from 1894 to 1908.

Observation deck at 500 feet

Wanamaker’s department store, now a Macy’s, was one of the first department stores in the U.S. when it was built in 1902.

The Grand Court

The Masonic Temple, across the street from City Hall, dates from 1873.

Norman style

The many well-known actors born in Philadelphia include Kevin Bacon, John Barrymore, Bradley Cooper, Blythe Danner, Richard Gere, Grace Kelly, Jack Klugman, and Will Smith.

Kelly in “Rear Window” with James Stewart

Philadelphia’s many museums include the Mutter Museum of the College of Physicians of Philadelphia, known for its collection of anatomical and pathological specimens.

The Laurel Hill Cemetery has a real gravestone for the fictional character of Adrian Balboa, wife of fictional boxer Rocky Balboa.

The statue of Rocky Balboa is near the Philadelphia Museum of Art.

Also near the Museum of Art is the Claes Oldenburg sculpture “Giant 3-Day Plug, Scale A.”


Pennsylvania: Delaware County

Delaware County is in the southeastern corner of Pennsylvania, adjacent to Philadelphia, Montgomery County, Chester County, and Delaware. It’s one of six Delaware counties in the U.S.

Known informally as “Delco,” it’s the fifth-most-populous county in Pennsylvania, and the third-smallest in area.

The county seat of Delaware County is the borough of Media (pop. 5,327).

Media Theatre (1927)

The largest city in the county, located on the Delaware River between Philadelphia and Wilmington, is Chester (pop. 33,972). It reached its peak population of 66,039 in 1950. Incorporated in 1682, it’s the oldest city in the state.

Old Chester Courthouse (1724)

Singer-actress Ethel Waters (1896-1977) was born in Chester, and Bill Haley and His Comets were founded there (in 1952).

The Chester Waterside Station of the Philadelphia Electric Company (1916) is a former coal-fired power station, now an office building.

The Philadelphia Union of Major League Soccer actually play in Chester, at Talen Energy Stadium (2010).

On the Delaware River

Delaware County’s many colleges and universities include Villanova (10,000 students) in Radnor Township, Haverford (1,300 students) in Haverford, and Swarthmore (1,600 students) in Swarthmore.

No, Mama Cass did not go to Swarthmore.

Singer-songwriter Jim Croce (1943-1973) grew up in Upper Darby, and graduated from Villanova University in 1965.

The Tower Theater in Upper Darby (1927) was originally a movie theater; it’s been a popular venue for concerts since the 1970s.

The 2012 film “Silver Linings Playbook” was set in, and filmed in, Upper Darby and nearby communities.

Artist Andrew Wyeth (1917-2009) was born and died in Chadds Ford, and many of his paintings were set in the area.




Pennsylvania: Chester County

Chester County (pop. 498,886) is east of Lancaster County. The only other Chester counties are in South Carolina and Tennessee.

In the northeastern part of the county, the communities of Berwyn, Devon, Paoli, and Malvern are on the historic “Main Line” – western suburbs of Philadelphia along the former Pennsylvania Railroad’s Main Line from Philadelphia to Pittsburgh.

The far southern part of Chester County is considered to be in the suburban area of Wilmington, Delaware.

The county seat of Chester County is the borough of West Chester (pop. 18,461).

Chester County Courthouse (1846)

The Warner Theater in West Chester was built in 1930 in Art Deco style. Its auditorium was demolished in 1986, and the remainder of the building (including the three-story tower) was renovated as the Hotel Warner.

West Chester is the home of the American Helicopter Museum, established in 1996.

QVC, the home-shopping TV channel, has its headquarters in West Chester, with studio tours available six days a week.

Founded in 1986

The community of Kennett Square (pop. 6,072) is known as the “Mushroom Capital of the World” because of its mushroom farming. It has an annual Mushroom Festival, with a parade and tours.

Olympic figure skater Johnny Weir was born in the city of Coatesville (pop. 13,100) in 1984.

In the borough of Phoenixville, the Colonial Theatre (1903) was featured in the 1958 science fiction movie “The Blob.” The theater now has an annual “Blobfest.”

Still showing movies




Pennsylvania: Lancaster County

Lancaster County (pop. 519,445) is east of York County. Its population has been growing every decade since the first U.S. Census in 1790.

A popular destination for tourists, Lancaster County is in the heart of “Pennsylvania Dutch” country. The county has the world’s largest settlement of Amish, with about 37,000 people, or 7% of its population.

The county has the greatest agricultural production of any county in Pennsylvania. It’s also well-known for its 29 covered bridges.

The county seat of Lancaster County is Lancaster (pop. 59,322), eighth-largest city in the state.

Courthouse (1855)

Robert Fulton, who developed the first commerically successful steamboat, was born on a farm just south of Lancaster in 1765.

Fulton birthplace museum

Wheatland, a Federal-style house built in 1828, was the home for many years of James Buchanan, the 15th president. He died at Wheatland in 1868 and is buried in Lancaster.

Baseball Hall of Famer Bruce Sutter was born in Lancaster, in 1953, and grew up in nearby Mount Joy.

The Central Market in Lancaster is one of the oldest public markets in the U.S. The current building dates from 1889.

The Fulton Opera House in Lancaster, built in 1852, has been called the oldest working theater in the U.S.


The community of Strasburg (pop. 2,819) has a 1,700-square-foot model train display called the Choo Choo Barn, and the Red Caboose Motel, with 38 cabooses, a mail car, and a baggage car.

The unincorporated community of Intercourse (pop. 1,274) reportedly has more signs stolen than any other city in the U.S.


Pennsylvania: York County

York County (pop. 434,972) is east of Adams County, on the border with Maryland. One of five York counties in the U.S., its population has grown in every decade since 1800.

The county seat of York County is the city of York (pop. 43,718), 11th-largest city in Pennsylvania.

Old Courthouse (1898)

The annual York Fair, dating from 1765, has been called American’s first fair.

York still has two daily newspapers: the Daily Record (seven days a week) and the Dispatch (five days a week).

Penn State York, founded in 1939, has about 1,000 students.

Artist Jeff Koons was born in York in 1955.

York is the home of the Weightlifting Hall of Fame.

The York area has been called “The Factory Tour Capital of the World.”

Harley-Davidson Tour

The community of Hallam (pop. 2,673) is the home of the Haines Shoe House, built in 1948.

The community of Hanover (pop. 15,289) is known as “The Snack Food Capital of the World.”

Utz has a tour.


Pennsylvania: Adams County

Adams County (pop. 101,407) is south of Cumberland County, on the border with Maryland. It’s named for President John Adams (1735-1826).

The county seat of Adams County is the community of Gettysburg (pop. 7,620), location of the pivotal 1863 battle in the Civil War, and a major site for Civil War tourism.

Adams County Courthouse (1858)

The many Civil War-related sites include the Gettysburg National Military Park, a 360-degree Cyclorama painting of the battle, and Civil War Tails – a diorama with thousands of miniature hand-made cats.

Civil War Tails

Gettysburg has a statue of Abraham Lincoln seated on a bench, suitable for photographs.

The Eisenhower National Historic Site features the home where Dwight and Mamie Eisenhower lived after they left the White House in 1961.

Gettysburg College, founded in 1831, is a private, liberal-arts college with about 2,600 students.

Pennsylvania Hall

The Adams County community of Biglerville is the home of the National Apple Museum, which opened in 1990.

The community of Orrtanna is the home of Mr. Ed’s Elephant Museum and Candy Emporium.





Pennsylvania: Cumberland County

Cumberland County (pop. 235,406) is east of Franklin County and just west of Harrisburg. It’s one of nine Cumberland counties in the U.S.

The county seat of Cumberland County is Carlisle (pop. 18,682).

Old Courthouse (1846)

The Carlisle Indian Industrial School (1879-1918) was the flagship Indian boarding school in the U.S.

Over the years, more than 10,000 children attended.

In 1911-12 the Carlisle football team, starring Jim Thorpe and coached by Glenn “Pop” Warner, defeated Harvard and other football powerhouses of the day.

When the Indian School closed, the land and facilities became part of the U.S. Army War College. Today, the college has about 800 students at a time.

Carlisle is also the home of Dickinson College, founded in 1773, a private liberal arts school with about 2,000 students.

The community of Shippensburg (pop. 5,492) is the home of Shippensburg University of Pennsylvania, a public school with about 8,000 students.

Shippensburg has “The World’s Largest Paint Can.”

Bret Michaels, lead singer of the band Poison, grew up in the Cumberland County community of Mechanicsburg.


Pennsylvania: Franklin County

Franklin County (pop. 149,618) is east of Fulton County. Its population has grown in every U.S. Census since 1790.

It is one of 25 Franklin counties in the U.S., and one of the 23 named for Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790).

Franklin County has an Alexander Hamilton House (in Waynesboro) and a Robert Kennedy Presbyterian Church (in Montgomery Township). They were named, respectively, for a local wagon maker and a 19th-century pastor.

Hamilton House

James Buchanan (1791-1868), the only president from Pennsylvania, was born in the community of Cove Gap. He was the 15th president.

Buchanan’s Birthplace State Park

The county seat of Franklin County is Chambersburg (pop. 20,268).

Franklin County Courthouse (1865)

Chambersburg has a giant apple truck metal statue, part of the Roadside Giants of the Lincoln Highway project.

1.5 tons

The Franklin County community of Greencastle (pop. 3,996) has a giant firecracker, outside a fireworks store.

In the community of Mercersburg (pop. 1,561) the Mercersburg Academy is a college preparatory boarding school. Actors James Stewart and Benicio del Toro attended, although not at the same time.





Pennsylvania: Fulton County

Fulton County (pop. 14,845), located east of Bedford County, is the fourth-least-populous county in Pennsylvania.

It’s one of eight Fulton counties, and one of the seven named for Robert Fulton (1765-1815), the inventor who developed a commercially successful steamboat. He was born in Pennsylvania, before it became a state.

Fulton County is one of two counties in Pennsylvania with no active rail lines.

Cowans Gap State Park is in the northeastern part of the county.

Established in 1937

The county seat of Fulton County is McConnellsburg (pop. 1,220), fifth-smallest county seat in Pennsylvania.

Fulton County Courthouse (1852)

The Fulton House in McConnellsburg dates from 1797. It was originally a tavern.


Pennsylvania: Bedford County

Bedford County (pop. 49,762) is east of Somerset County. The only other Bedford counties are in Tennessee and Virginia.

The county sat of Bedford County is the borough of Bedford (pop. 2,841).

Bedford County Courthouse (1828)

The Bedford Springs Resort, in Bedford, dates from 1806. It’s one of the few remaining 19th-century resort hotels that were built around mineral springs.

Reopened in 2007 after renovation

Bedford has a building shaped like a coffee pot, built in 1927 as a restaurant and gas station.

The community of New Paris (pop. 186) has a “Gravity Hill,” where cars seem to roll uphill.

The community of Artemas is the home of the Roadkill Cafe.

The borough of Manns Choice (pop. 300) got its name in 1848. Congressman Job Mann wanted a post office in an unnamed village, and he was supposed to name it – but postal maps were made with the temporary name “Mann’s Choice,” and then were never changed.

Bedford County is known for its 15 historic covered bridges.

Snooks Covered Bridge

Blue Knob (elev. 3,120 feet), highest point in Bedford County, is the site of Blue Knob State Park and the Blue Knob ski area.



Pennsylvania: Somerset County

Somerset County (pop. 77,742) is east of Fayette County, on Pennsylvania’s southern border with Maryland.

Mount Davis (elev. 3,213), the highest point in Pennsylvania, is in the southern part of the county. A road and several trails go to the top, where there is an observation tower.

Mt. Davis

The county seat of Somerset County is Somerset (pop. 6,277).

Somerset County Courthouse (1906)

The Mountain Playhouse, in the community of Jennerstown (pop. 695), is one of the longest-running summer stock theaters in the U.S., dating from 1939.

In a restored 1805 gristmill

Jennerstown has a roadside sculpture of a bicycle built for two, part of the Lincoln Highway Heritage Corridor’s Roadside Giants project.

In the community of Stoystown (pop. 355), the Kings and Queens Restaurant and Pub resembles a castle.

Built in 1970

On Sept. 11, 2001, United Airlines Flight 93 crashed in rural Somerset County. The Flight 93 National Memorial is now on the site.



Pennsylvania: Fayette County

Fayette County (pop. 136,606) is east of Greene County, on Pennsylvania’s southern border with West Virginia and Maryland.

It’s one of 11 Fayette counties, all named for the Marquis de Lafayette (1757-1834), whose full name was Marie-Joseph Paul Yves Roche Gilbert du Motier.

Fayette County is best known for Fallingwater, a house designed by Frank Lloyd Wright in 1935.

Weekend home for the Kaufmanns of Pittsburgh

The county seat of Fayette County is Uniontown (pop. 10,372). Uniontown reached its peak population of 21,819 in 1940.

Fayette County Courthouse (1890)

Uniontown was the birthplace and hometown of George Marshall (1880-1959) – Army officer, Secretary of State and Defense, namesake of the post-WWII Marshall Plan, and winner of the Nobel Peace Prize.

McDonald’s restaurants first introduced the Big Mac in Uniontown, in 1967. It sold for 45 cents.

In the Coal Boom of the early 1900s, Uniontown was reported to have 13 millionaires – the most, per capita, of any city in the U.S.

John P. Conn House (1906)

The unincorporated community of Lemont Furnace is the home of Penn State Fayette, the Eberly Campus (1965). The campus was renamed in 2004 for Robert Eberly (1918-2004), who endowed his fortune to higher education in western Pennsylvania.

About 1,000 students

Laurel Caverns, in Fayette County, is the largest cave in the northeastern U.S. It closes in the winter for bat hibernation. Kavernput, a miniature golf course, is in “the largest simulated cave in the world.”


Pennsylvania: Greene County

Greene County (pop. 38,686) is south of Washington County, in the far southwestern corner of Pennsylvania.

It is one of 14 Greene counties, all named for Nathanael Greene (1742-1786), major general in the Continental Army.

The county seat of Greene County is Waynesburg (pop. 4,176), home of Waynesburg University (1850), a private school affiliated with the Presbyterian Church. It has about 1,800 students.

Miller Hall (1899)

Since 1874, Waynesburg has had an annual Rain Day Festival on July 29.

The community of Carmichael (pop. 483) is known for its annual Coal Queen Pageant, part of the Pennsylvania Bituminous Pageant.

2005 documentary film


Pennsylvania: Washington County

Washington County (pop. 207,820) is south of Beaver County, just southwest of Pittsburgh, on the border with Ohio. It’s one of the 30 counties (and one borough) named for George Washington.

The county seat of Washington County is the city of Washington (pop. 13,663), which had a population of 26,280 in 1950. It’s often known as “Little Washington,” to distinguish it from Washington, D.C.

Washington County Courthouse (1900)

Washington is the home of Washington and Jefferson College (1781), a private liberal-arts college with about 1,500 students.

Old Main (1834)

PONY Baseball and Softball started in Washington in 1951 and is still headquartered there. PONY, a nationwide program for youth sports, stands for “Protect Our Nation’s Youth.” (The “N” was originally “Neighborhood.”)

The Whiskey Rebellion, a tax protest in 1791-94, was centered in the Washington area.

Statue in Washington

Football great Joe Montana was born in Washington County and was a basketball and football star at Ringgold High School.

The borough of California (pop. 6,795) is the home of California University of Pennsylvania (1852), a public university with about 9,000 students. California was named for the Territory of California at the time of the 1849 Gold Rush.

The borough of Canonsburg (pop. 8,992) was the childhood home of singers Perry Como (child of Italian immigrants, 1912-2001) and Bobby Vinton (of Polish and Lithuanian descent, born 1935).

The McDonald’s restaurant in Canonsburg has statues and exhibits featuring both Como and Vinton.

The community of Donora (pop. 4,781) was the birthplace of baseball greats Stanislaw Franciszek “Stan the Man” Musial (in 1920), Ken Griffey Sr. (in 1950), and Ken Griffey Jr. (in 1969).

The Donora Smog was an air inversion in 1948 that killed 20 people and sickened 7,000 in Donora – then the site of U.S. Steel’s Donora Zinc Works and American Steel and Wire plant.

The museum opened in 2008.

Washington County has two dozen 19th-century covered bridges, and an annual festival to celebrate them.


Pennsylvania: Beaver County

Beaver County (pop. 170,539) is west of Allegheny County and east of Ohio and West Virginia. The only other Beaver counties are in Oklahoma and Utah.

The county was named for the 21-mile Beaver River, which flows into the Ohio River in the middle of the county, south of Beaver Falls.

Beaver Falls

Many famous athletes have come from Beaver County, including football greats Joe Namath, Tony Dorsett, and Mike Ditka, and basketball legend “Pistol Pete” Maravich.

Beaver Falls High School, 1961

The county seat of Beaver County is the borough of Beaver (pop. 4,531).

Beaver is the home of Penn State Beaver (1965), which has about 700 students.

Nearby Beaver Falls (pop. 8,987) is the home of Geneva College (1880), a Christian liberal arts college with about 1,800 students.

The largest city in Beaver County is Aliquippa (pop. 9,438), a former steel town that had 26,000 people in 1960. Mike Ditka was a three-sport star at Aliquippa High School in the 1950s.

Henry Mancini (1924-1994), legendary composer of music for films, grew up in West Aliquippa.

Legionville, the first formal basic training facility for the U.S. military (1792-93), was in Beaver County.



Pennsylvania: Allegheny County

Allegheny County (pop. 1,225,365) is west of Westmoreland County. The second-largest county in Pennsylvania by population, it reached its peak population of 1,628,587 in 1960.

Pittsburgh in red

The county seat of Allegheny County is the city of Pittsburgh (pop. 305,704). Now the 63rd largest city in the U.S., Pittsburgh was in the Top 10 from 1910 to 1940.

The Allegheny County Courthouse (1888), designed by H.H. Richardson in Romanesque Revival style, is well-known for its “Bridge of Sighs” to the jail (now a court building).

Across Ross Street

Pittsburgh has two 19th-century inclined railroads, descending Mt. Washington to the Monongahela River – the Duquesne Incline (1877) and the Monongahela Incline (1870)

Monongahela Incline

Pittsburgh has two restored movie palaces – Heinz Hall (former Loew’s Penn Theater, 1927) and the Benedum Center (former Stanley Theatre, 1928) now used for concerts, opera, and more.

Heinz Hall

The 535-foot Cathedral of Learning (1926) at the University of Pittsburgh is the tallest educational building in the Western Hemisphere.

Gothic style

The actress and model Evelyn Nesbit (1884-1967) grew up in Pittsburgh. She was portrayed by Elizabeth McGovern in the 1981 film “Ragtime.

The real Evelyn

The Andy Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh contains Andy’s stuffed Great Dane.

Andy bought it already stuffed.

Canton Avenue in Pittsburgh is the steepest street in the U.S., with a grade of 37%.

The borough of Braddock (pop. 2,159) has the first Carnegie Library in the U.S., built in 1888. Braddock had a population of 20,789 in 1920.

Still a library

In West Mifflin (pop. 20,313), southeast of Pittsburgh, Kennywood (1899) is one of the few old trolley parks in the U.S. that are still open for business. It’s a National Historic Landmark.

The city of Monroeville (pop. 28,386) is the home of the Monroeville Mall (1969), filming location for the horror film “Dawn of the Dead” (1978).


Pennsylvania: Westmoreland County

Westmoreland County (pop. 365,169) is west of Cambria County, in the Pittsburgh Metropolitan Area. The only other Westmoreland County is in Virginia.

The county seat of Westmoreland County is the city of Greensburg (pop. 14,892).

Westmoreland County Courthouse (1906)

Greensburg is the home of Seton Hill University, a Catholic liberal arts school with about 2,500 students, and the University of Pittsburgh at Greensburg, with about 2,000 students.

Seton Hill (not Seaton Hall, NJ)

The city of Latrobe (pop. 8,338) was the hometown of both golfer Arnold Palmer (1929-2016) and Fred Rogers (1928-2003), longtime host of “Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood.”

Latrobe has a statue of Mr. Rogers.

The banana split was invented in 1904 at Strickler’s Drug Store in Latrobe.

Actress and singer Shirley Jones grew up in Westmoreland County and attended South Huntingdon High School. She was Miss Pittsburgh of 1952.

George Blanda (1927-2010), a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, was born in the community of Youngwood (pop. 3,050). A quarterback and placekicker, Blanda played in the NFL until he was 48.

In the unincorporated community of Kecksburg, the “Kecksburg UFO Incident” on Dec. 9, 1965, is sometimes called “Pennsylvania’s Roswell,” but it may have actually been a meteor.

UFO replica in Kecksburg

In the borough of New Alexandria (pop. 560), Speal’s Tavern is the home of the Cigar Box Guitar Museum.

The Big Mac Museum is in a McDonald’s restaurant in North Huntingdon Township.


Pennsylvania: Cambria County

Cambria County (pop. 143,679), west of Blair County, is the only Cambria County in the U.S. The word “Cambria” is the Latinised form of the Welsh word for the country of Wales.

The county seat of Cambria County is the borough of Ebensburg (pop. 3,351).

Cambria County Courthouse (1881)

The largest community in Cambria County is the city of Johnstown (pop. 20,978). Johnstown had a population of 67,327 in 1920.

Johnstown has had three major floods in its history: in 1889, 1936, and 1977. The 1889 flood, which killed at least 2,200 people, happened when heavy rains caused the collapse of the South Fork Dam, 14 miles upstream.

The Johnstown Flood National Memorial is located at the site of the dam collapse.

The former Carnegie Library (1891) in Johnstown now houses the Johnstown Flood Museum.

The Johnstown Inclined Plane, built in 1891, is billed as “the world’s steepest vehicular inclined plane.” It climbs a steep hill above Johnstown, at a grade of 70.9 percent, in about 90 seconds.

Jack Ham, former Pittsburgh Steeler linebacker and member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, was born in Johnstown in 1948 and grew up there.


Pennsylvania: Blair County

Blair County (pop. 127,089) is west of Huntingdon County. The only Blair County in the U.S., it was named for John Blair, an early business leader in the area.

Janet Blair (1921-2007), big-band singer and actress, was born in Blair County with the name Martha Janet Lafferty. She took the county’s name as her stage name.


The county seat of Blair County is Hollidaysburg (pop. 5,791).

Blair County Courthouse (1876)

Highland Hall in Hollidaysburg, formerly a seminary, a school for girls, and a county office building, has recently been renovated as housing for senior citizens.

(Built in 1865)

Slinky toys have been manufactured in Hollidaysburg since the early 1960s.

Hollidaysburg was the birthplace of gossip columnist Hedda Hopper (1885-1966) and Harold Ickes (1874-1952), Secretary of the Interior for 13 years in the Franklin D. Roosevelt administration.

The largest city in Blair County is Altoona (pop. 46,320), just north of Hollidaysburg. Altoona reached its peak population of 82,054 in 1930.

Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament (1960)

The Altoona Works, built by the Pennsylvania Railroad between 1850 and 1925, was for many years the largest railroad shop complex in the world.

The Horseshoe Curve is a legendary three-track railroad curve into the Allegheny Mountains, just west of Altoona. A visitor center and observation deck are located on the inside of the curve.

Built by the Pennsylvania Railroad in 1854

The Altoona Curve is a minor-league baseball team in Altoona – the Double-A Eastern League affiliate of the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Altoona claims to have America’s oldest gas station (1909) and America’s oldest roller coaster – Leap the Dips (1902) in Lakemont Park.

Fred Waring (1900-1984), leader of the dance band Fred Waring and the Pennsylvanians, was born in the Blair County community of Tyrone (pop. 5,477). He also provided the financial backing for the electric blender known as the “Waring Blendor.”


Pennsylvania: Huntingdon County

Huntingdon County (pop. 45,913) is west of Mifflin County. It’s the only Huntingdon County in the U.S.

The county seat is the community of Huntingdon (pop. 7,093), which apparently was named for a town of the same name in England.

Huntingdon County Courthouse (1883)

In the 19th century, the Huntingdon area had many iron furnaces and forges, which consumed limestone, iron ore, and wood (for charcoal).

Paradise furnace

The Clifton Theater (1928) in downtown Huntingdon is now the Clifton 5.

The Amtrak “Pennsylvanian” train, between Pittsburgh and New York City, stops in Huntingdon.

Lincoln Caverns has been an attraction in the Huntingdon area since 1931.

The Swigart Automobile Museum is in the community of Mill Creek (pop. 328). Founded in 1920, it’s the oldest auto museum in the U.S.

Herbie the Love Bug

The community of Mount Union (pop. 2,447) hosts the annual Creation Festival, one of the largest Christian music festivals in the world.

Since 1979

The “Thousand Steps Trail” begins near Mount Union. More than 1,000 steps, constructed by workers in 1936, climb about 800 feet, as part of a longer trail system.

John Purdue (1802-1876), the original benefactor of Purdue University in Indiana, was born in Huntingdon County.

His grave is on the Purdue campus.


Pennsylvania: Mifflin County

Mifflin County (pop. 46,682) is northwest of Juniata County. It’s the only Mifflin County in the U.S.

The county was named for Thomas Mifflin (1744-1800), the first governor of Pennsylvania.

Born in Philadelphia

The communities of Mifflintown and Mifflin are not in Mifflin County – they’re in the adjacent Juniata County.

Dunder Mifflin, Inc. is fictional

The county seat of Mifflin County is the borough of Lewiston (pop. 8,338), which reached its peak population of 13,894 in 1950.

Mifflin County Courthouse (1843)

The Embassy Theatre (1927) in Lewistown is under renovation.

The McCoy House (1843) in Lewiston, built in the Federal style, is now a local history museum

The Pennsylvania State Fire Academy is in Lewiston.

The 64-foot Soldiers and Sailors Monument (1906) in Lewistown contains a stone from Abraham Lincoln’s tomb in Springfield, Illinois.

Actor Joseph Campanella (1924-2018) worked as a radio sportscaster in Lewistown.

On “The Nurses” (1965)

The community of Reedsville (pop. 641) has a 13-foot cow.

The community of Juniata Terrace (pop. 502) is a former company town, built in 1920-24 for employees of the British Crown Rayon Company. About 250 nearly identical brick townhouses were built on three streets.

Still standing


Pennsylvania: Juniata County

Juniata County (pop. 24,636) is north of Perry County, between Harrisburg and State College. It’s the only Juniata County in the U.S.

The county was named after the Juniata River, a 104-mile-long tributary of the Susquehanna River. The word “Juniata” was apparently derived from an Iroquoian word meaning “standing stone.”

The county seat of Juniata County is the community of Mifflintown (pop. 936), third-smallest county seat in Pennsylvania.

Juniata County Courthouse (1873)

Mifflintown is the home of Empire Kosher Poultry, the largest producer of kosher poultry in the U.S.

The Midway Drive-In Theatre opened in Mifflintown in 1950, and it’s still in operation.

The community of Mifflin (pop. 642) is the home of Juniata Valley Winery.

The Tuscarora Academy Museum, southwest of Mifflintown, is operated by the Juniata County Historical Society. The Tuscarora Academy was the first secondary school in the county.

Built in 1816

Juniata County has three historic covered bridges. The Academia Pomeroy Bridge is the longest in the state, built in 1902.

278 feet long


Pennsylvania: Perry County

Perry County (pop. 45,969) is west of Dauphin County, just northwest of Harrisburg. Pennsylvania’s center of population is in the eastern end of the county.

It’s one of 10 Perry counties in the U.S., all named for Oliver Hazard Perry (1785-1819), naval hero of the War of 1812.

The county seat of Perry County is the borough of New Bloomfield (pop. 1,077).

Perry County Courthouse (1826)

The 2,200-mile Appalachian Trail runs through the streets of the community of Duncannon (pop. 1,522).

Downtown Duncannon

Duncannon has a 110-foot former forest fire lookout tower, which was moved from another site.

Actor Cameron Mitchell (1918-1994) graduated from high school in the community of Millerstown (pop. 673). He was best known for his starring role in the NBC western “The HIgh Chaparral” (1967-71).

Perry County has 14 historic covered bridges.

Adairs Bridge (1864)

Little Buffalo State Park and Fowlers Hollow State Park are both in Perry County.

Little Buffalo State Park


Pennsylvania: Dauphin County

Dauphin County (pop. 268,100) is west of Lebanon County. The only Lebanon County in the U.S., its population has been rising steadily since 1820.

The county was named for Louis-Joseph, Dauphin of France, the first son of King Louis XVI.

He died at age 7 of TB.

The county seat of Dauphin County is Harrisburg (pop. 49,192), the state capital, on the Susquehanna River. Harrisburg reached its peak population of 89,544 in 1950.

Dauphin County Courthouse (1942)

The Pennsylvania State Capitol, built in 1906 in Beaux-Arts style, is considered one of the most beautiful state capitol buildings.

Interior of the dome

Harrisburg is the home of the National Civil War Museum, which opened in 2001.

The Harrisburg Senators, Double-A Eastern League affiliate of the Washington Nationals, play at FNB Field (1987). The park was formerly named Riverside Stadium, Commerce Bank Park, and Metro Bank Park.

The Broad Street Market (1860) in Harrisburg is one of the oldest continually operating farmers’ markets in the country.

The Harrisburg Transportation Center, formerly Pennsylvania Station (1887), has Amtrak Keystone Service to Philadelphia and New York City, as well as the Pennsylvanian train to Pittsburgh.

The community of Hershey (pop. 14,257) is about 15 miles east of Harrisburg. Hershey began in the early 1900s as a company town for Milton S. Hershey’s Hershey Chocolate Company.

Chocolate Avenue has kiss-shaped streetlights.

Hershey, nicknamed “The Sweetest Place on Earth,” has a Chocolate World visitor center, the Hersheypark theme park, Hersheypark Stadium, Hersheypark Arena, and Hershey Museum.

Newt Gingrich, former Congressman from Georgia and Speaker of the House from 1995 to 1999, grew up in the Dauphin County community of Hummelstown (pop. 4,538).

Born in Harrisburg in 1943

The Three Mile Island Nuclear Generating Station, site of an accident in 1979, is in Dauphin County.

Still in operation


Pennsylvania: Lebanon County

Lebanon County (pop. 133,568) is west of Berks County. It’s the only Lebanon County in the U.S.

The county seat of Lebanon County is the city of Lebanon (pop. 25,477), which reached its peak population of 30,045 in 1960.

St. Luke’s Episcopal Church (1880)

In Pennsylvania, “Lebanon” is often pronounced “Leb-a-nin” or “Leb-nin.”

Unlike in Beirut

Lebanon has long been famous for its smoked sausage known as Lebanon bologna.

Lebanon has an annual New Year’s Eve traditional of dropping a 150-pound Lebanon bologna at midnight.


Basketball star Sam Bowie was born in Lebanon in 1961 and played at Lebanon High School. After three years at the University of Kentucky, he was picked second in the 1984 NBA draft – one ahead of Michael Jordan.


The community of Annville (pop. 4,767) is the home of Lebanon Valley College, a liberal arts school affiliated with the United Methodist Church.

About 1,700 students

The borough of Mount Gretna (pop. 242) is the home of the Pennsylvania Chautauqua, founded in the late 1800s and still active every summer.

Hall of Philosophy


Pennsylvania: Berks County

Berks County (pop. 411,442) is west of Lehigh County. It’s the only Berks County, and it’s been growing in every U.S. Census since 1790.

The county was named for Berkshire County in England, which was the home of William Penn’s family.

Windsor Castle is in Berkshire.

The county seat of Berks County is the city of Reading (pop. 87,575), fifth-largest city in Pennsylvania. Reading (pronounced REDD-ing) reached its peak population of 111,171 in 1930.

Berks County Courthouse (1932)

Pulitzer Prize-winning author John Updike (1932-2009) was born in Reading and grew up in the nearby community of Shillington.

Singer Taylor Swift was also born in Reading, in 1989. Her family moved to Nashville when she was 14.

Reading is well-known for its pagoda, atop Mount Penn, overlooking the city. The seven-story wooden building dates from 1908. Owned by the city, it contains a small cafe and a gift shop.

The Reading Railroad operated in southeastern Pennsylvania and adjacent states from 1924 until it went into bankruptcy in the 1970s.

Famous for Monopoly

Reading has been known as “The Pretzel City” because of its many pretzel bakeries.

Giant pretzel statue

The Reading area is credited with having the first multi-store outlet center in the U.S. – the Vanity Fair center in 1974.

“Outlet Capital of the World”

The Reading Fightin Phils, AA-Eastern League affiliate of the Philadelphia Phillies, play at FirstEnergy Stadium (1951).

The bow anchor from the U.S.S. Maine – sunk in Havana harbor in 1898 – can be found in Reading’s City Park. Franklin Roosevelt, then Assistant Secretary of the Navy, was there to dedicate it in 1914.

The community of Centerport (pop. 387) has a literal fork in the road at a local intersection.

The birthplace of Daniel Boone (1734-1820) is in Berks County. There’s a museum and a historic house, administered by the Friends of the Daniel Boone Homestead.



Pennsylvania: Lehigh County

Lehigh County (pop. 349,429), west of Northampton County, has been growing in population since 1820. It’s the only Lehigh County in the U.S.

The county seat of Lehigh County, and the third-largest city in Pennsylvania, is Allentown (pop. 118,032).

Old Courthouse (1864)

Allentown is the home of Muhlenberg College, a liberal arts school founded in 1848, affiliated with the Lutheran Evangelical Church in America.

About 2,000 students

The Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs, AAA International League affiliate of the Philadelphia Phillies, play at Coca-Cola Park (2008) in Allentown.

Automobile executive Lido Anthony “Lee” Iacocca was born in Allentown in 1924, and actress Amanda Seyfried was born there in 1985.

Not Lee

The Liberty Bell Museum is located in Allentown’s Zion’s Reformed United Church of Christ – the building in which the Liberty Bell was hidden during the Revolutionary War.

Replica bell

Dorney Park and Wildwater Kingdom is an amusement and water park, with seven roller coasters, just west of Allentown. Dorney Park dates from the 1880s.

The America on Wheels Museum opened in 2008.

The Neuweiler Brewery in Allentown dates from 1913. It closed in 1968.

Just east of Allentown, in the part of Bethlehem that’s in Lehigh County, is the 21-story Martin Tower – tallest building in the Lehigh Valley, built in 1972 as headquarters of Bethlehem, then the world’s second-largest steel producer.

Vacant since 2007


Pennsylvania: Northampton County

Northampton County (pop. 297,735) is on the eastern border of Pennsylvania, across the Delaware River from New Jersey. The only other Northampton counties are in North Carolina and Virginia.

The county seat of Northampton County is the city of Easton (pop. 26,800), at the eastern end of the Lehigh Valley, just east of the larger cities of Allentown and Bethlehem, at the confluence of the Lehigh and Delaware rivers.

Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Monument

Easton is the home of Lafayette College, a private, liberal arts school with about 2,500 students.

Established in 1826

Heavyweight boxer Larry Holmes, heavyweight champion in the late 1970s and early 1980s, grew up in Easton.

“The Easton Assassin”

The State Theatre in Easton dates from 1927. It now hosts a variety of concerts, plays, and more.

1,500 seats

Forks Township, just north of Easton, is the headquarters of Crayola. The Crayola Experience, in Easton, is a museum and visitor center.

West of Easton is the city of Bethlehem (pop. 74,982), seventh-largest city in Pennsylvania, located partly in Lehigh County. Bethlehem is the home of Lehigh University, a private research university with about 7,000 students.

Founded in 1865

Bethlehem was settled by Moravians (from today’s Czech Republic), and is the home of Moravian College (established 1742), a private, liberal arts college with about 1,700 students. It’s the sixth-oldest college in the country.

Bethlehem was the headquarters of Bethlehem Steel, America’s second-largest steel producer (after U.S. Steel in Pittsburgh) and largest shipbuilder. Bethlehem Steel closed in 2003.

Current use of the site includes a casino.

The candy company Just Born, maker of the popular Easter candy Peeps, is in Bethlehem. It’s a family-owned company, started in 1923 by Russian immigrant Sam Born.

Dropping a giant Peep on New Year’s Eve

Actor Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson played football at Freedom High School in Bethlehem.

Later at U of Miami

Ten miles from Bethlehem is Nazareth. Auto racer Mario Andretti (born 1940) grew up in Nazareth after his family immigrated from the Kingdom of Italy (now Croatia).

The song “The Weight,” on The Band’s 1968 album “Music from Big Pink,” is set in Nazareth. (“I pulled into Nazareth, was feeling ’bout half past dead.”)


Pennsylvania: Carbon County

Carbon County (pop. 65,249) is in a historic coal-mining area, east of Schuylkill County. The only other Carbon counties are in Montana, Utah, and Wyoming.

Because of its mountainous terrain, Carbon County has been called the “Switzerland of America” – along with Ouray (Colorado), eastern Tennessee, northeastern Iowa, and Lake County (California).

Blue Mountain

The county seat of Carbon County is the borough of Jim Thorpe (pop. 4,781), the “Gateway to the Poconos.”

Carbon County Courthouse (1893)

The original name of Jim Thorpe was Mauch Chunk, derived from a Native American term that may have referred to a nearby mountain. Mauch Chunk was originally a company town, founded in 1818 by the owners of a coal company.

Jim Thorpe railroad station (1888)

The Mauch Chunk Switchback Railway (1828-1932), which hauled coal down the mountain to town, was the second permanent railroad in the U.S. and the first to carry passengers.

In 1954, the widow of Jim Thorpe (the renowned Native American athlete from Oklahoma), made an arrangement with Mauch Chunk to have the town renamed in his honor and a monument (with his remains) erected.

Jim Thorpe (the man) had no connection to Mauch Chunk. He attended the Carlisle Indian Industrial School, 100 miles away in Carlisle, Pennsylvania.

Jim Thorpe (the community) is known for its historic architecture, including the adjacent Asa Packer Mansion (a museum) and Harry Packer Mansion (a bed and breakfast).

The largest community in Carbon County is Lehighton (pop. 5.500), home of Country Junction, “The World’s Largest General Store.”

There’s a petting zoo.

The old mining town of Lansford had a population of 9,632 in 1930; in 2010, it was 3,941. The No. 9 Mine and Museum is now a tourist attraction.

In the community of Nesquehoning (pop. 3,349), the former high school (1919) was renovated into apartments in 1998.

The school closed in the 1960s.

Lehigh Gorge State Park is popular for whitewater rafting.



Pennsylvania: Schuylkill County

Schuylkill County (pop. 148,289) is south of Columbia County. It’s the only Schuylkill County. “Schuylkill” comes from a Dutch word meaning “hidden river.”

Pronounced “SKOO-kill”

The county is in eastern Pennsylvania’s historic anthracite coal region. It once had 1,000 miles of railroad track, with a peak population of 235,505 in 1930.

Parts of Schuylkill County have the highest proportion of Lithuanian-Americans in the country, as well as a large population whose ancestors came from the Tyrolean Alps.

The county seat of Schuylkill County is the city of Pottsville (pop. 14,324).

Schuylkill County Courthouse (1891)

Pottsville was the hometown of writer John O’Hara (1905-1970), who used a fictionalized version of Pottsville (known as Gibbsville) as the setting of many of his stories and books.

D.G. Yuengling & Son, American’s oldest operating brewery (1829), has free tours.

The community of Shenandoah (pop. 5,071) was the birthplace of bandleaders Jimmy Dorsey (1904-1957) and Tommy Dorsey (1905-1956).

The community of Reinerton was the birthplace of bandleader Les Brown (1912-2001), leader of Les Brown and His Band of Renown.

The community of Ashland (pop. 2,817) has a coal mine tour and a statue of “Whistler’s Mother,” honoring local mothers.

The community of Mahanoy City has a statue of a hooded man on the gallows, in commemoration of the Molly Maguires – a violent group of 19th-century Irish-American coal miners.

Near the community of Deer Lake (pop. 687), boxer Muhammed Ali had his longtime training camp.

Penn State Schuylkill, a public university with about 900 students, is in the community of Schuylkill Haven.


Pennsylvania: Luzerne County

Luzerne County (pop. 320,918) is in northeastern Pennsylvania. The only Luzerne County in the U.S., it was named for the Chevalier de la Luzerne, an 18th-century French soldier and diplomat.

The county, in an historically important anthracite coal-minng region, reached its peak population of 445,109 in 1930.

Luzerne County has four state parks: Frances Slocum, Lehigh Gorge, Nescopeck, and Ricketts Glen.

Nescopeck State Park (2005)

The county seat of Luzerne County is the city of Wilkes-Barre (pop 41,498). The city reached its peak population of 86,626 in 1930.

Luzerne County Courthouse (1909)

Wilkes-Barre, on the flood-prone Susquehanna River in the Wyoming Valley, was named for John Wilkes and Isaac Barre, members of the British Parliament who supported colonial America.

Barre coined the term “Sons of Liberty.”

Wilkes-Barre is the home of King’s College, a Roman Catholic liberal arts school founded in 1946, and Wilkes University, a private university founded in 1933 as a satellite campus of Bucknell University.

King’s Administration Building, formerly coal company offices

Florence Foster Jenkins (1868-1944), socialite and amateur soprano, was born in Wilkes-Barre. She was portrayed by Meryl Streep in the 2016 film “Florence Foster Jenkins.”

The Planters peanut company was founded in Wilkes-Barre in the early 1900s by Italian immigrant Omedeo Obici.

Actor Jack Palance (1919-2006) was born in the Luzerne County community of Hazleton (pop. 25,340). The son of a Ukrainian immigrant coal miner, his born name was Volodmyr Palahniuk.

In “City Slickers” (1991)

The city of Nanticoke (pop. 10,465) is where Kress “five and dime” stores began, in 1887. Nanticoke was also the hometown of one-armed Major League baseball player Pete Gray (1915-2002).

Russell Johnson (1924-2014), who played The Professor on “Gilligan’s Island” (1964-67), was born in the borough of Ashley (pop. 2,790).

On left

The city of Pittstown (pop. 7,739) is known as “The Quality Tomato Capital of the World.”

Pennsylvania: Columbia County

Columbia County (pop. 67,295) is east of Montour County. It’s one of eight Columbia counties in the U.S.

The county seat of Columbia County is the town of Bloomsburg (pop. 14,855).

Columbia County Courthouse (1890)

The annual Bloomsburg Fair, dating from 1855, is the largest fair in Pennsylvania – which does not have a state fair.

Bloomsburg is the home of Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania, a public university that was once a teachers’ college. It now has about 10,000 students.

Country singer Lacy J. Dalton was born in Bloomsburg in 1946.

Bill’s Old Bike Barn in Bloomsburg has more than 100 vintage motorcycles and a variety of other antiques.

The Relax Inn in Bloomsburg has a giant candle in front.

In the nearby community of Berwick (pop. 10,477), the Jackson Mansion (1877) is the home of the Berwick Historical Society.

Tours are available.

Wise Foods in Berwick produces a variety of snack foods that are well-known in the eastern U.S., including the Official Potato Chip and Cheese Doodle of the New York Mets.

Actor Nick Adams (1931-1968), best known for the ABC TV show “The Rebel” (1959-61), is buried at Saints Cyril and Methodius Ukrainian Cemetery in Berwick.

Columbia County has about 30 19th-century covered bridges.

Davis Covered Bridge (1875)



Pennsylvania: Montour County

Montour County (pop. 18,267) is north of Northumberland County. It’s the smallest county (in square miles) in Pennsylvania.

Shaped like New York state

The only Montour County in the U.S., it was named for Andrew Montour (1720-1772), well-known as an interpreter and negotiator in the backcountry of Pennsylvania and Virginia.

Montoursville is actually in a different county.

The county seat of Montour County is the borough of Danville (pop. 4,699).

Montour County Courthouse (1871)

The Thomas Beaver Free Library and Danville YMCA (1886) are on the National Register of Historic Places. Thomas Beaver, a prominent businessman in Danville, donated money for the library’s construction.

The 17th-century Beaver Wars in the area, territorial wars between Amerindian groups, were named for the animal, not for Thomas Beaver.

Christopher Sholes (1819-1890), inventor of the QWERTY keyboard, was born in the Montour County community of Mooresburg.

The Keefer Covered Bridge No. 7 dates from 1853.


Pennsylvania: Northumberland County

Northumberland County (pop. 94,528) is east of Snyder County, in a region where coal mining was historically important. The only other Northumberland counties are in Virginia, Ontario, New Brunswick, and Australia.

The county seat of Northumberland County is the city of Sunbury (pop. 9,905).

Northumberland County Courthouse (1865)

Lorenzo Da Ponte (1749-1838), lyricist for Mozart’s “Marriage of Figaro,” “Don Giovanni” and “Cosi fan tutte,” lived in Sunbury in the 1810s and ran a grocery store there.

The city of Shamokin (pop. 7,374) has been the home, since 1907, of the National Ticket Company, once the largest maker of tickets in the U.S.

Shamokin had 21,000 people in 1920.

The community of Milton (pop. 7,042) has a Conagra Brands plant, and a statue of Chef Boyardee.

The community of Northumberland (pop. 3,804) was the home of British theologian and scientist Joseph Priestley (1733-1804) for 10 years. His home is now a museum.

The 19th-century Sodom Schoolhouse is on the National Register of Historic Places.


Northumberland County is known for its old covered bridges.

Keefer Station Bridge (1888)


Pennsylvania: Snyder County

Snyder County (pop. 39,702) is south of Union County. It’s the fifth-smallest county, in square miles, in Pennsylvania.

Snyder County in 1911

Named for Simon Snyder, governor of Pennsylvania from 1808 to 1817, it’s the only Snyder County in the U.S.

The county seat of Snyder County is Middleburg (pop. 1,309).

Borough Hall, Middleburg

The Shade Mountain Vineyards are near Middleburg.

The Shade Mountain Golf Course was built in 1969.

Selinsgrove (pop. 5,383) is the largest community in Snyder County.

Gov. Simon Snyder Mansion

Selinsgrove is the home of Susquehanna University, a private liberal arts school with about 2,000 students.

For 29 years, ending in 2017, Selinsgrove held the Guinness World Record for the Longest Banana Split. The old record was 4.5 miles; an Australian group made a 4.99-mile split.

In 1988

The borough of Beavertown (pop. 964) was the seasonal home of Davy Jones (1945-2012) of The Monkees. The site of a planned Davy Jones Museum in Beavertown burned down in 2016.

Davy in Beavertown in 2010

An automobile called the Lulu was manufactured by the Kearns Motor Car Company in Beavertown in 1914.



Pennsylvania: Union County

Union County (pop. 44,947) is east of Centre County. It’s one of 17 Union counties in the U.S., and the fourth-smallest county (in square miles) in Pennsylvania.

Union County in 1911

It is one of the most consistently Republican counties in the U.S. Andrew Jackson was the last Democratic Party candidate for president to win the county.

The county seat of Union County is the borough of Lewisburg (pop. 5,792).

Campus Theatre (1941)

Lewisburg is the home of Bucknell University, a private, liberal arts college with about 3,600 students.

The east-west street names in Lewisburg – including St. George,  St. Catherine, and St. Louis – were not named for saints. They were apparently named for children of the city’s founders. The St. may be short for “strasse,” the German word for “street.”

The nearby community of Mifflinburg (pop. 3,594) was known as “Buggy Town” because its factories produced so many horse-drawn buggies – with more than 50 buggy and sleigh makers in the 1880s.

Mifflinburg has a Buggy Museum, commemorating its buggy industry.

The borough of New Berlin (pop. 838) has the New Berlin Heritage Museum in the Old Courthouse (1856).

Open by appointment

Factory Bridge is a wooden covered bridge, built in 1880.

60 feet long

R.B. Winter State Park is northwest of Mifflinburg.

Halfway Lake


Pennsylvania: Centre County

Centre County (pop. 153,990) is east of Clearfield County, in the center of Pennsylvania. Its population has gone up in every U.S. Census since 1900.

It’s the only Centre County in the U.S., and the fifth-largest county in Pennsylvania in square miles.

Centre County Courthouse (1805)

The county seat of Centre County is Bellefonte (pop. 6,187), which was given its name by a visiting Frenchman who saw its natural spring – which still provides the community’s water supply.

Known for its Victorian homes

The Brockerhoff Hotel, built in 1866, is now an assisted living facility.

Renovated in the 1880s

The Gamble Mill (1894) in Bellefonte is being renovated as a restaurant and hotel.

Last used for grinding grain in 1947

The huge “Match Factory” buildings, home of the Pennsylvania Match Company until 1947, now contain the headquarters of the American Philatelic (stamp collecting) Society.

A large producer of wooden matches

The largest community in Centre County is State College (pop. 42,034), home of Pennsylvania State University, where the athletic teams are known as the Nittany Lions.

Bellefonte and State College are in the Nittany Valley, and nearby is Mount Nittany, which once had mountain lions on it. The word “Nittany” was apparently derived from an Algonquian word.

Nittany Lion mascot

The skeleton of a 19th-century mule named Old Coaly, an unofficial campus mascot, is on display in the HUB-Robeson Center at Penn State.

Penn’s Cave is a major tourist attraction in Centre County. The cave tour is given entirely by boat.

The cave roof is 55 feet above the stream.

Curtin Village at Eagle Ironworks Historical Site has 18 buildings and other structures related to an ironworks that dates back to 1810.

The operation closed in 1921.

Centre County has six state parks, including Bald Eagle, Black Moshannon, and Penn-Roosevelt. Black Moshannon is known for its bog, sphagnum moss, and three varieties of carnivorous plants.

Pitcher plants


Pennsylvania: Clearfield County

Clearfield County (pop. 81,642) is east of Jefferson and Indiana counties. It’s the only Clearfield County in the U.S.

Shaped like Arkansas

The mountainous Clearfield County is Pennsylvania’s third-largest county in land area. Its population has fallen from 103,236 in 1920.

The county seat is the borough of Clearfield (pop. 6,215), on the West Branch Susquehanna River.

Clearfield County Courthouse (1860)

The seven-story Dimeling Hotel dates from 1905. It now has residences for senior citizens.

The Ritz Theatre, built in 1926, is still showing first-run movies.

Denny’s Beer Barrel Pub is famous for its gigantic hamburgers, including the 3-pound ($29.99), 6-pound ($49.99), 15-pound ($82.99), and 125-pound (market price).

The largest community in Clearfield County is the city of DuBois (pop. 7,794), pronouced “Du-boys,” home of Penn State DuBois.

About 900 students

The coal company town of Helvetia is now abandoned. It was a company town for the Helvetia Mine from 1896 to 1947.

Only the power plant is still standing.

Parker Dam State Park and S.B. Elliott State Park are both in Clearfield County.

Parker Dam State Park

The Quehanna Wild Area, with herds of native elk, is the largest state forest wildlife area in the state. It was a center of nuclear research starting in the 1950s, and has a legacy of radioactive and toxic waste contamination.

Second-growth forests



Pennsylvania: Indiana County

Indiana County (pop. 88,880) is south of Jefferson County. It’s the only Indiana County in the U.S.

Meaning “land of the Indians”

Indiana County is known as “The Christmas Tree Capital of the World,” because of the many Christmas trees grown there. The National Christmas Tree Association was founded there, in 1957.

Now headquartered in Colorado

Indiana County has communities named Homer City (for the Greek poet), Chevy Chase Heights, Black Lick, Cherry Tree, Commodore, Smicksburg, Armagh, and Glen Campbell, named for Cornelius Campbell. (“Glen” means “valley” in Scottish.)

The singer visited in 1971.

The county seat of Indiana County is the borough of Indiana (pop. 13,975).

Old Courthouse (1870)

Actor James Stewart (1908-1997) was born in Indiana. His parents owned a hardware store in town.

Jimmy and statue in Indiana

The Jimmy Stewart Museum is on the third floor of the Indiana County Community Building.

Opera singer Renee Fleming was born in Indiana but grew up in Rochester, N.Y. Author Edward Abbey (1927-1989) was born in Indiana and went to high school there.

Indiana University of Pennsylvania is a public research university with about 13,000 students. It opened in 1875 as Indiana Normal School.

In the community of Homer City, south of Indiana, the coal-burning Homer City Generating Station has the tallest smokestack in the U.S., at 1,217 feet. The smokestack is no longer in use.

Buttermilk Falls, 46 feet high, is one of the highest waterfalls in Pennsylvania. From 1931 to 1956, the waterfall site was owned by Fred McFeely, grandfather of Fred Rogers of “Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood” fame.

Commodore (pop. 331) was founded in 1919 by the Clearfield Bituminous Coal, a subsidiary of the New York Central Railroad, as a model company town, with better facilities than most company towns. It was named for Commodore Cornelius Vanderbilt.

On National Register of Historic Places

The Ghost Town Trail is a 36-mile rail trail along the right-of-way of the former Ebensburg and Black Lick Railroad. The trail passes through several abandoned coal-mining towns.


Pennsylvania: Jefferson County

Jefferson County (pop. 45,200) is east of Clarion County. It’s one of the 26 counties (plus one parish) named, directly or indirectly, for President Thomas Jefferson.

Second from left

The county reached its peak population of 63,090 in 1910.

The county seat of Jefferson County is the borough of Brookville (pop. 3,924).

Jefferson County Courthouse (1869)

The Moonlite Drive-in in Brookville has been open since 1952. It stays open more of the year than many drive-ins, from March until late fall.

The Jefferson County History Center is operated by the Jefferson County Historical Society.

Opened in 2004

The largest community in Jefferson County is Punxsutawney (pop. 5,962), the “Weather Capital of the World.”

Every year on Feb. 2, on Gobbler’s Knob, groundhog Punxsutawney Phil predicts whether or not there will be six more weeks of winter.

The ceremony dates from 1887.

The 1993 movie “Groundhog Day” featured Punxsutawney Phil.

Actually filmed in Illinois

During the rest of the year, Phil can be viewed at the Groundhog Zoo (now called Phil’s Burrow) – a terrarium that’s built into the Punxsutawney library.

Punxsutawney has a museum called the Weather Discovery Center inside the former Federal Building and Post Office (1914).

The community of Reynoldsville (pop. 2,759) was the hometown of baseball great Albert Walter “Sparky” Lyle. He was a relief pitcher for five Major League teams between 1967 and 1982.

Clear Creek State Park has hiking, fishing, hunting and canoeing, plus overnight accommodations in cabins and yurts.


Pennsylvania: Clarion County

Clarion County (pop. 39,988) is north of Armstrong County. It’s the only Clarion County in the U.S.

Clarion County in 1895

The county got its name from the 110-mile Clarion River, a tributary of the Allegheny River. The river got its name from a surveyor who thought it sounded like a distant clarion.

It flows west-southwest.

The county seat of Clarion County is Clarion (pop. 5,276).

Clarion County Courthouse (1885)

On the south side of Clarion, adjacent to Interstate 80, is the enclosed Clarion Mall, with a J.C. Penney and a Kmart.

Clarion University of Pennsylvania was founded in 1867 as the Carrier Seminary of Western Pennsylvania. It has about 5,000 students.

The Sutton-Ditz House (1847), in Classical Revival style, is now the museum of the Clarion County Historical Society.

The nine-hole Foxburg Country Club, west of Clarion, is the oldest golf course in continuous use in the U.S. It opened in 1887.

Open to the public

Pro Football Hall of Famer Jim Kelly grew up in the community of East Brady (pop. 942). He was an All-State quarterback for East Brady High School.

Buffalo Bills, 1986-96

On State Route 36 is a giant Yogi Bear statue.


Pennsylvania: Armstrong County

Armstrong County (pop. 68,941) is east of Butler County. The only other Armstrong County is in Texas.

Armstrong County in 1911

The county was named for John Armstrong (1717-1795), a general in the Revolutionary War and a delegate to the Continental Congress for Pennsylvania.

The county seat of Armstrong County is the borough of Kittanning (pop. 4,044), pronouned k-TAN-ing. The name came from Delaware Indian words meaning “on the main river.”

On the Allegheny River

The Armstrong County Courthouse is on the National Register of Historic Places.

Built in 1860

A Muffler Man holding a hamburger is in front of the Cadet Restaurant in Kittanning.

Ford City (pop. 2,991) was a company town, founded in 1887 by the Pittsburgh Plate Glass Company (now PPG Industries). Its factory once employed 5,000 workers; it was closed in the 1990s.

The city of Parker (pop. 840) has been called “The Smallest City in the USA.” It briefly had a population of 20,000 in the 1870s, during the northwestern Pennsylvania Oil Boom.

In the winter of 2014, Parker was the site of a massive ice jam on the Allegheny River, causing minor flooding.

The Brady’s Bend Iron Company Furnaces, in Brady’s Bend Township, are on the National Register of Historic Places. They’ve been called “The Cradle of the Iron and Steel Industry in America.”

Dating from the 1840s

The borough of Leechburg (pop. 2,156) was the first place where natural gas was used for industrial purposes. Leechburg’s population peaked at 4,489, in 1930.


Pennsylvania: Butler County

Butler County (pop. 183,862) is east of Lawrence County. It’s one of eight Butler counties, and one of the three named for General Richard Butler (1743-1791), a hero of the Revolutionary War.

Butler County in 1911

The county is just north of Allegheny County and Pittsburgh; its population has grown in every decade since 1800.

The county seat of Butler County is the city of Butler (pop. 13,757). Butler reached its peak population of 24,477 in 1940.

Butler County Courthouse (1895)

The Butler County National Bank (1903) was converted into apartments in 1993.

Playthings Etc., “The World’s Coolest Toy Store,” is a large toy store that’s shaped like a Stealth bomber.

Wood frame and aluminum skin

Butler was the longtime home of the Standard Steel Car Company (later Pullman-Standard), a large rail car manufacturer. The plant closed in 1982 and was demolished in 2005.

Rick Santorum grew up in Butler and attended Butler Senior High School. He was a U.S. senator from Pennsylvania, 1995-2007, and ran for the presidency in 2012.

The low-budget 1968 horror cult classic “Night of the Living Dead” was filmed in the vicinity of Evans City (pop. 1,833). Evans City has a Living Dead Museum and Gift Shop.

Evans City Cemetery

The borough of Saxonburg (pop. 1,525) was founded in 1832 by John A. Roebling (1806-1869), who designed the Brooklyn Bridge.

Replica in Roebling Park

The borough of Portersville (pop. 235) has an ice-cream stand shaped like a snowman.

The borough of Slippery Rock is the home of Slippery Rock University of Pennsylvania (1889), a public university with about 9,000 students.


Pennsylvania: Lawrence County

Lawrence County (pop. 91,108) is south of Mercer County, on the border with Ohio. It’s one of 11 Lawrence counties, and one of the 10 named for naval officer James Lawrence (1781-1813).

Lawrence County in 1911

The county seat of Lawrence County is the city of New Castle (pop. 23,128). New Castle reached its peak population of 48,834 in 1950.

Lawrence County Courthouse (1855)

New Castle has been known as “The Hot Dog Capital of the World” and “The Fireworks Capital of America.” The city’s Coney Island hot dog business was founded in the 1920s by Greek immigrants.

The fireworks industry in New Castle also dates from the early 20th century, and the city is still headquarters of the fireworks company Pyrotecnico.

The Scottish Rite Cathedral (1925) in New Castle, with 2,800 seats, has been used as a Masonic meeting place, movie theater, and concert hall. It currently hosts a variety of special events.

Football coach Mark Mangino was born in New Castle in 1956 and grew up there. He has been head coach at the University of Kansas and an assistant coach at Iowa State.

As a Jayhawk

The State Theater in New Castle is the home of the New Castle Playhouse.

The borough of New Wilmington (pop. 2,466) is the home of Westminster College, a liberal arts college founded in 1852, affiliated with the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.).

About 1,100 students

The borough of Ellwood City (pop. 7,921) is the home of the Orthodox Monastery of the Transfiguration (1967), the first English-language Orthodox monastery in North America.

The monastery was founded by Princess Ileana of Romania (1909-1991), a great-granddaughter of Queen Victoria and of Tsar Alexander II. She was abbess of the monastery until her retirement in 1981.



Pennsylvania: Mercer County

Mercer County (pop. 116,638) is west of Venango County, on the border with Ohio.

Mercer County in 1911

It’s one of eight Mercer counties, and one of the six named for Gen. Hugh Mercer (1726-1777), who died from wounds received at the Battle of Princeton during the Revolutionary War.

Born in Scotland

The county seat of Mercer County is the borough of Mercer (pop. 2,002).

Mercer County Courthouse (1911)

The Mercer Livestock Auction has a large statue of a bull.

Trent Reznor, founder of Nine Inch Nails, grew up in Mercer.

The largest city in Mercer County is Hermitage (pop. 16,220).

Avenue of Flags, Hermitage

The city of Sharon (pop. 14,038), is the home of Reyers Shoe Store, called “The World’s Largest Shoe Store.”

The Buhl Farm Golf Course in Sharon is America’s only free public golf course.

9 holes


Penn State Shenango, in downtown Sharon, is the only urban campus in the Penn State system. Established in 1965, it has about 600 students.

Sharon is in the Shenango Valley.

Daffin’s Chocolate Kingdom is a large candy store in Sharon. The store features a 400-pound chocolate turtle and a 125-pound chocolate reindeer.

The city of Farrell (formerly known as South Sharon) had a population of 15,586 in 1920, when its steel mill was in full operation. The Sharon Steel Corporation closed in 1992; its 2010 population was 5,111.

The author E.L. Konigsburg (1930-2013) was high school valedictorian in Farrell.



Pennsylvania: Venango County

Venango County (pop. 54,984), west of Forest County, is the only Venango County. The name “Venango” came from the Native American word for the region (“Onenge,” meaning “otter”).

Venango County in 1895

Venango County was the site of an oil boom in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The first commercial oil well in the U.S. was the Drake Well (1859), in northern Venango County.

Drake Well Museum

The county seat of Venango County is the city of Franklin (pop. 6,545). Franklin reached its peak population of 10,254 in 1930.

Venango County Courthouse (1867)

The Barrow-Civic Theatre dates from 1946. It now has a variety of plays, concerts, and other events.

The DeBence Antique Music World is a museum with a collection of more than 100 antique mechanical musical instruments, located in a former “five and dime” store.

The Dairy Queen on the southwest side of town has an Apollo spacecraft in front.

John Wilkes Booth (1838-1865) spent much of 1864 in Franklin, trying to make a living with oil-drilling.

He formed the Dramatic Oil Company.

Eight miles east of Franklin is Oil City (pop. 10,557), largest city in Venango County. It had a population of 21,247 in 1930.

Latonia Theater (1928)

The four-story National Transit Building in Oil City dates from 1890. John D. Rockefeller had a Standard Oil Co. office there.

It now has spaces for artists.

The community of Rouseville (pop. 472) has the oldest producing oil well in the world. McClintock Well No. 1 has been pumping oil since 1861.

Pithole City is a ghost town, northeast of Oil City. An early oil boomtown, it had a population of 20,000 in 1865, but was unincorporated by 1877. A visitor center was opened in 1972.

The Methodist church was here.


Pennsylvania: Forest County

Forest County (pop. 7,716) is west of Elk County. Forest County is the third-least-populous county in Pennsylvania.

Forest County in 1895

The county was named for the many forests within its boundaries.

The county’s population increased 56% from 2000 (when it was 4,946) to 2010, because of the opening of the State Correctional Institution-Forest, a maximum-security prison.

Built in 2004

The county seat of Forest County is the borough of Tionesta (pop. 483), second-smallest county seat in Pennsylvania.

The privately owned, 75-foot Sherman Memorial Lighthouse (2004) is on Lighthouse Island (actually a peninsula) in the Allegheny River in Tionesta. It is open occasionally for tours.

60 miles from navigable water (Lake Erie)

Tionesta Lake is a U.S. Army Corps of Engineers reservoir, built in 1940 for flood control.

Popular for boating and fishing

Cook Forest State Park, southeast of Tionesta, is known for its virgin white pine and hemlock forests.

The finest old-growth forest in the state


Pennsylvania: Elk County

Elk County (pop. 31,946) is west of Cameron County. The only other Elk counties are in Kansas and Poland.

Elk County in 1895

The county was named for the Eastern elk that have historically inhabited the region. Elk hunting is allowed in Elk County and other nearby counties.

The county seat of Elk County is the borough of Ridgway (pop. 4,078), “The Gateway to Allegheny National Forest.” A century ago, Ridgway was a wealthy center of the lumber industry in Pennsylvania.

Elk County Courthouse (1879)

Ridgway is the home of the annual Ridgway Chainsaw Carver’s Rendezvous, an event dedicated to carving wood with chainsaws. It brings participants from around the world.

The largest community in Elk County is the city of St. Marys (pop. 13,070). Founded by Bavarian Roman Catholics, its name was originally Marienstadt (Mary’s City).

Apollo Theatre (1928)

Straub Brewery (1872), of St. Marys, is the third-oldest brewery in the U.S. It is still owned and operated by its founding family, now in its seventh generation.

The brewery is famous among visitors for the free drinks from its “Eternal Tap.”

St. Marys was the home of St. Joseph Monastery, the first Benedictine convent in the U.S. It was founded in 1852 and closed in 2014.

The 17 nuns dispersed to other monasteries.

Decker’s Chapel (1856) is one of several churches in the U.S. known as “The Smallest Church in the U.S.”

12 feet by 18 feet

The borough of Johnsonburg had a 2010 population of 2,483. In 1920, when its paper mills were at their busiest,  the population was 5,400.

Johnsonburg still has a paper mill.

Johnsonburg’s mills once printed the “Saturday Evening Post.” More recently, paper for the “Harry Potter” books was produced there.

Johnsonburg is the hometown of the record producer and musician Meco (Domenico Monardo), best know for the 1977 space disco version of the “Star Wars” theme.


Pennsylvania: Cameron County

Cameron County (pop. 5,085) is west of Clinton County. It is Pennsylvania’s least-populous county.

The only other Cameron County is in Texas; Louisiana has a Cameron Parish. This one was named for Pennsylvania Senator Simon Cameron (1799-1889).

U.S. Secretary of War under Lincoln

The county seat of Cameron County is the borough of Emporium (pop. 2,073).

Cameron County Courthouse (1890)

The Cameron County Historical Society has a Little Museum, south of Emporium.

The unincorporated village of Mix Run was the birthplace and childhood home of the silent film star Tom Mix (1880-1940).

The West Creek rail trail opened in June 2017. It runs 18 miles from Emporium to St. Marys.

Cameron County has three state parks – Sizerville, Sinnemahoning, and Bucktail Natural Area.


Pennsylvania: Clinton County

Clinton County (pop. 39,238) is west of Lycoming County. It’s one of nine Clinton counties, and one of the seven named for DeWitt Clinton (1769-1828), the New York governor who was largely responsible for the construction of the Erie Canal.

The Susquehanna River flows through it.

The county seat of Clinton County is the city of Lock Haven (pop. 9,772). The courthouse was built in 1867 in Italian Villa style.

Towers added later

The Roxy Theatre in Lock Haven dates from 1924.

The only movie theater in Clinton County

The Piper Aircraft Corporation built private planes in Lock Haven for almost 50 years,  starting in 1937. Today, Lock Haven is the home of the Piper Aviation Museum.

Lock Haven is the home of Lock Haven University of Pennsylvania, a state university with about 4,600 students. It was founded in 1870 as Central State Normal School.

The Clinton County Historical Society has a museum in Heisey House (1831), the first brick building in Lock Haven.

Farmhouse in Federal style

The borough of Beech Creek (pop. 701) is the hometown of Alison Bechdel, author of the graphic memoir “Fun Home,” which became a Tony Award-winning musical of the same name.

Beech Creek

The borough of Renovo (pop. 1,228) was once well-known for its complex of Pennsylvania Railroad shops. Its population was 5,877 in 1920.

Annual Flaming Foliage Festival Parade

Clinton County has five state parks.

Hyner View State Park


Pennsylvania: Lycoming County

Lycoming County (pop. 116,111) is west of Sullivan County. It is the only Lycoming County in the U.S., and is Pennsylvania’s largest county in land area.

Larger than Rhode Island

The county seat of Lycoming County is the city of Williamsport (pop. 29,385), which is best known as the birthplace of Little League Baseball (in 1939) and the home of the Little League World Series (since 1947).

Games are actually played in South Williamsport.

Williamsport was a very prosperous city in the late 19th century, thanks to the lumber industry. It reportedly had more millionaires per capital than any other city in the world.

Homes on “Millionaires Row”

The athletic teams at Williamsport High School are known as the Millionaires.

The Community Arts Center in Williamsport opened in 1928 as the Capitol Theatre. It was restored in 1993.

More than 2,100 seats

Lycoming College, in Williamsport, is a liberal arts college with about 1,400 students. It was founded in 1812 as the Williamsport Academy for the Education of Youth in the English and Other Languages.

Affiliated with United Methodist Church

The former U.S. Post Office (1891) is now Williamsport City Hall.

The former City Hall (1894) is now the City Hall Grand Hotel.

Not the same building

The 11-story Genetti Hotel was built in 1921 as the Lycoming Hotel. It is still open as a hotel.

Easy walk to the Susquehanna River

The Williamsport Crosscutters, affiliate of the Philadelphia Phillies in the short-season Single-A New York-Penn League, play at Bowman Field (1926), second-oldest minor league ballpark in the U.S.

Now officially known as BB&T Ballpark

The weekly newspaper “Grit” was founded in Williamsport in 1882. In the first half of the 20th century, it was very popular in rural areas through much of the U.S., with a circulation of more than 400,000.

Moved to Topeka in 1992

Lycoming County has a community called Jersey Shore (pop. 4,361), on the West Branch Susquehanna River. Its founding family came from New Jersey.

Near the Lycoming Mall in the borough of Muncy (pop. 2,477) is a 90-foot steel sculpture known as the Hadany Arch. It was built by sculptor Israel Hadany in 1977.

Over the entrance road




Pennsylvania: Sullivan County

Sullivan County (pop. 6,428) is west of Wyoming County. It is Pennsylvania’s second-smallest county in population.

Sullivan County in 1895

It’s one of six Sullivan counties, which are named for three different Sullivans. This one was named for Charles C. Sullivan, leader of the Pennsylvania Senate in 1847 who spearheaded the county’s creation. It was formerly part of Lycoming County.

The county seat of Sullivan County is the borough of Laporte, smallest county seat in Pennsylvania, with a 2010 population of 316. It’s also the state’s highest county seat, at an elevation of 1.972 feet.

Sullivan County Courthouse (1894)

The heavily forested county has two state parks: Ricketts Glen and Worlds End. Ricketts Glen State Park has 24 named waterfalls.

Ganoga Lake is one of Pennsylvania’s highest natural lakes, at 2,260 feet.

Fed by springs

Football great Harold Edward “Red” Grange (1903-1991) was born in the community of Forksville (pop. 145) and lived there until he was five years old. His father was a lumber camp foreman in the area.

In the community of Eagles Mere (pop. 120), the volunteer fire department has created an ice toboggan slide in the winter since 1904. Riders go up to 45 m.p.h. down the hill.

The Eagles Mere Air Museum has about 20 vintage planes dating from 1908 to 1935.

Most are still flying.

In the unincorporated community of Lopez, five bombs aimed into the ground spell out “LOPEZ.”

The unincorporated community of Mildred has a retired MGM-13 Mace cruise missile outside the American Legion post.

Sullivan County has three old covered bridges, including Forksville Covered Bridge (1850).

Still in use




Pennsylvania: Wyoming County

Wyoming County (pop. 28,276) is west of Lackawanna County. The only other Wyoming counties are in New York and West Virginia.

The word “wyoming” came from an Indian word meaning “extensive meadows.” The state of Wyoming was named for the Pennsylvania county.

The county seat of Wyoming County is the borough of Tunkhannock (pop. 1,836).

Wyoming County Courthouse (1843)

The Dietrich Theatre in Tunkhannock opened in 1936.

Still showing first-run movies

The Perkins Restaurant and Bakery in Tunkhannock has a sign with cow heads, left over from when the building was a dairy bar.

Tunkhannock is the home of the Northern Tier Symphony Orchestra.

Robert Helmacy, music director

The Tunkhannock Creek Viaduct (1915), in the community of Nicholson (pop. 767), is the country’s largest concrete railroad bridge. It’s 2,375 feet long and 240 feet high.

Still in use

The borough of Factoryville (pop. 1,158) was the birthplace and hometown of baseball great Christy Mathewson (1880-1925). He had a lifetime record of 373-188, and an ERA of 2.13.

“Big Six”

Factoryville has a statue of Mathewson in Christy Mathewson Park, and a Christy Mathewson Day parade in August.

Proctor & Gamble has had a large plant in Wyoming County since 1966. It has about 3,000 employees.




Pennsylvania: Lackawanna County

Lackawanna County (pop. 214,437) is northwest of Monroe County. Formerly a center of anthracite coal mining and steel-making, it reached its peak population of 310,397 in 1930. It was the state’s last county created, in 1878.

The county was named for the Lackawanna River, a 41-mile tributary of the Susquehanna River. The river’s name came from a Lenni Lenape word meaning “stream that forks.”

Lackawanna County Courthouse (1884)

The county seat of Lackawanna County is the city of Scranton (pop. 76,089), sixth-largest city in Pennsylvania. In 1930, its population was 143,433; it was then the 55th-largest city in the U.S. (larger than Miami).

Scranton was known as “The Electric City,” because it had the nation’s first streetcars powered entirely by electricity.

The sign is still atop the Board of Trade building.

The former Delaware, Lackawanna, and Western Railroad station (1908) is now the Radisson Lackawanna Station Hotel. It closed as a train station in 1970.

Reopened as a hotel in 1983

Steamtown National Historic Site is a railroad museum and heritage railroad, on the old railroad yards adjacent to the hotel. It was established in 1986.

Nearby is the Electric City Trolley Museum, established in 1986.

Joseph Biden, former vice president, was born in Scranton in 1942. Charles Sumner Woolworth (1856-1947) opened the world’s first “five-and-dime” store in Scranton, in 1880.

The Houdini Museum opened in Scranton in 1988. It celebrates the life and career of magician Harry Houdini (1874-1926).

Scranton has one of the largest St. Patrick’s Day parades in northeastern Pennsylvania.

The Scranton Public Library (1890) was donated to the city by John J. Albright. The adjacent former Church of Christ, Scientist is now the children’s library.

Albright was a founder of Buffalo’s Albright-Knox Art Gallery

William “Bill” Scranton (1917-2013), Pennsylvania’s Republican governor 1963-67, was part of the Scranton family – founders and patriarchs of the city. He ran for president in 1964.

Barry Goldwater won the nomination.

Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Jason Miller (1939-2001) grew up in Scranton. He played the role of the exorcist in “The Exorcist” (1973).

Statue in downtown Scranton

The Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Railriders, Triple-A International League affiliate of the New York Yankees, play at PNC Field in the nearby community of Moosic.

Formerly Lackawanna County Stadium

Archbald Pothole State Park, northeast of Scranton, features “The World’s Largest Glacial Pothole” – 38 feet deep and up to 42 feet across. It was discovered in 1884.


Pennsylvania: Monroe County

Monroe County (pop. 169,842) is south of Wayne and Pike counties, across the Delaware River from New Jersey. It’s one of 17 counties named for President James Monroe.

Monroe County in 1911

The county has grown in every U.S. Census since 1890. Its Pocono Mountains are popular for tourists, and it’s relatively convenient for commuters to New Jersey and New York.

The county seat of Monroe County is Stroudsburg (pop. 5,567).

Monroe County Courthouse (1890)

The Sherman Theater in Stroudsburg dates from 1926. It now hosts a variety of concerts and other events.

Just east of Stroudsburg is East Stroudsburg, which is larger than Stroudsburg, with a 2010 population of 11,922.

Pocono Cinema

East Stroudsburg University of Pennsylvania is a public university with about 7,000 students. It began in 1893 as the private East Stroudsburg Normal School.

Two miles from New Jersey

The unincorporated community of Tobyhanna is the home of the annual Tobyhanna Millpond #1 Ice Harvest, which recreates the ice-harvesting industry, which was important in the area more than 100 years ago.

The community of Scioto is the home of Eddie’s Toy Museum.

The Coca Cola Stairway

Monroe County has three state parks: Big Pocono, Gouldsboro, and Tobyhanna.

The Camelback Mountain Resort is a ski area with a top elevation of 2,133 feet and a vertical drop of 800 feet.

There’s a waterpark in summer.

Pocono Manor is a resort in Monroe County that was founded in 1902 by a group of Quakers from Philadelphia.

Still in operation

Pocono Raceway (the “Tricky Triangle”) is a 2.5-mile course that opened in 1971.




Pennsylvania: Pike County

Pike County (pop. 57,369) is south of Wayne County, across the Delaware River from New York and New Jersey.

Pike County in 1911

It’s one of 10 Pike counties, all of them named for Zebulon Pike (1779-1813), brigadier general and explorer.

Pikes Peak, Iowa, was also named for him.

Pike County has been Pennsylvania’s fastest-growing county in recent years, thanks to its relative proximity to New York City.

It’s in the NYC metro area.

The county seat of Pike County is the borough of Milford (pop. 1,021), fourth-smallest county seat in Pennsylvania.

Pike County Courthouse (1873)

The Columns Museum in Milford features the bloody flag on which Abraham Lincoln laid his head after he was shot at Ford’s Theatre in Washington, D.C.

The Pike County Historical Society’s museum

The Hotel Fauchere in Milford dates from 1880.

Italianate style

Grey Towers National Historic Site was the family home of Gifford Pinchot (1865-1946), first director of the U.S. Forest Service and two-time governor of Pennsylvania.

Built in 1886

A few miles east of Milford is the borough of Matamoras (pop. 2,469), the easternmost municipality in Pennsylvania, located at the point where Pennsylvania, New York, and New Jersey meet.

Northwest of Milford is the Zane Grey Museum, former residence of the Western writer Zane Grey (1872-1939). The museum is operated by the National Park Service.

The Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area is in Pennsylvania and New Jersey, where the Delaware River cuts through a ridge of the Appalachian Mountains.

Dingmans Falls

Camp Tamiment (1921-2005), a resort in the Pocono Mountains, was founded by Socialists. Later, its Tamiment Playhouse nurtured the early careers of Danny Kaye, Jerome Robbins, Carol Burnett, Neil Simon, and Woody Allen.

“A progressive version of the Catskills”


Pennsylvania: Wayne County

Wayne County (pop. 52,822) is east of Susquehanna County, in the northeastern corner of Pennsylvania. It’s one of 16 Wayne counties in the U.S.

The county was named for General “Mad Anthony” Wayne (1745-1796).

Wayne County has about 30 summer camps, hosting some 28,000 children every year.

Two hours from New York City

The highest point in Wayne County is Mount Ararat (elev. 2,638). Its western and northern sides drain into Chesapeake Bay, and its eastern side drains into Delaware Bay.

Noah’s Ark was not found here.

The county seat of Wayne County is the borough of Honesdale (pop. 4,480).

300-foot Irving Cliff

The Wayne County Courthouse dates from 1880.

Second Empire style

Honesdale has been called “The Birthplace of American Railroading,” because it had the first commercial steam locomotive run on rails – the “Stourbridge Lion” in 1829.

Today there’s a 25-mile excursion line.

The children’s magazine “Highlights for Children” was founded in Honesdale in 1946, and its editorial offices are still there.

The Claws “N” Paws Wild Animal Park is in the village of Lake Ariel.

Sculpted Ice Works in the village of Lakeville has a tour and museum.

In the community of Hawley (pop. 1,211), the Bellemonte Silk Mill dates from 1894. It has been called the largest bluestone building in the world.

Now the Shops at Hawley Silk Mill

The Ritz Theater in Hawley has hosted the Ritz Company Playhouse since 1973.


Pennsylvania: Susquehanna County

Susquehanna County (pop. 43,356) is east of Bradford County. It’s the only Susquehanna County in the U.S.

In the late 1800s and early 1900s, coal mining was the major industry in mountainous Susquehanna County. Today, the county is a center of natural gas drilling in the Marcellus Shale.

The county seat of Susquehanna County is the borough of Montrose (pop. 1,617).

Susquehanna County Courthouse (1855)

The Montrose Theater has been showing movies for more than 90 years.

The community of Susquehanna Depot (pop. 1,643), on the Susquehanna River, was once a center for the construction of railroad locomotives and railroad cars. Its peak population was 3,872 in 1890.

The 3-story Erie Railroad Station had a hotel in it.

B.F. Skinner (1904-1990) was born in Susquehanna Depot. He was a philosopher, author, and professor of psychology at Harvard University.

The stone-arch Starrucca Viaduct, near Susquehanna Depot, opened in 1848 and is still in use. It was considered the world’s most expensive railroad bridge at the time of its construction.

Over Starrucca Creek

Susquehanna County has a community named Hop Bottom (pop. 337). It was named for the hop vines (hops are used for brewing beer) found in the bottom of the valley.

The highest peak in northeastern Pennsylvania’s Endless Mountains is North Knob of Elk Mountain (elev. 2,693 feet). The Elk Mountain Ski Area opened in 1959.

Salt Springs State Park has 500-year-old hemlock trees, three waterfalls, and Penny Rock – into which people hammer pennies for good luck.

Bad luck if you remove one.




Pennsylvania: Bradford County

Bradford County (pop. 62,622) is east of Tioga County. It is Pennsylvania’s second-largest county in square miles.

Bradford County in 1911

The only other Bradford County is in Florida. This one was named for William Bradford (1755-1795), attorney general of Pennsylvania and later of the United States.

Bradford County Courthouse (1898)

The county seat of Bradford County is not the city of Bradford – which is in McKean County, three counties to the west. Bradford County’s seat is the borough of Towanda (pop. 2,919), on the Susquehanna River.

Towanda in the 1960s

The name “Towanda” means “burial ground” in the Algonquian language.

The Keystone Theatre in Towanda opened more than 100 years ago as Hale’s Opera House. It now has both movies and live events.

Film director Gregory La Cava (1892-1952) was born in Towanda.

He directed this screwball comedy in 1936.

Bradford County has communities named Rome, Milan, Athens, and Troy.

Dinosaur tree stump, MIlan

The Spalding Memorial Library (1898) in Athens (pop. 3,367) is on the National Register of Historic Places.

Still a library

Troy Public High School (1924) in Troy (pop. 1,354) is also on the National Register.

Colonial Revival style

The community of Wysox (pop. 1,721) has a utility pole that looks like a giant pencil.

Mt. Pisgah State Park features the 75-acre, man-made Stephen Foster Lake. It’s one of three Mount Pisgahs in Pennsylvania, and one of at least 11 in the U.S.

This one is just outside Cripple Creek, Colorado.


Pennsylvania: Tioga County

Tioga County (pop. 41,981) is east of Potter County. It is Pennsylvania’s fourth-largest county in square miles.

The county reached its peak population of 52,313 in 1890, but has been growing since 1930. It was named for the Tioga River, whose waters eventually flow into the Susquehanna River and Chesapeake Bay.

Susquehanna River Basin

The county seat of Tioga County is the borough of Wellsboro (pop. 3,264).

Tioga County Courthouse (1835)

The Arcadia Theatre in Wellsboro dates from 1921. It was remodeled, with four screens, in 1997.

Still showing first-run movies

The Tioga Central Railroad runs a 24-mile railroad for visitors (summer and fall only), going north from Wellsboro, on a portion of the Wellsboro and Corning Railroad.

Weekly dinner trains too

West of Wellsboro is “The Grand Canyon of Pennsylvania,” also known as Pine Creek Gorge. The deepest point on the 47-mile gorge is 1,450 feet from the rim.

State parks on both sides

A private, 100-foot overlook tower is located on the east side of the canyon. Visitors pay $3 (credit card only) for admittance.

The borough of Mansfield (pop. 3,625) is the home of Mansfield University of Pennsylvania, a public liberal-arts university with about 2,700 students.

Founded in 1857

Mansfield was the birthplace of night football, hosting the first game with electric lights in 1892 (Mansfield Normal School vs. Wyoming Seminary).

Tom McMillen (born 1952) played high school basketball in Mansfield before starring at the University of Maryland and in the NBA. He was later a Congressman from Maryland. In college, he majored in chemistry and was a Rhodes Scholar.

At 6’11”, the tallest Congressman ever


Pennsylvania: Potter County

Potter County (pop. 17,457), east of McKean County, is Pennsylvania’s fifth-least-populous county. The only other Potter counties are in Texas and South Dakota.

The county was named for James Potter (1729-1789), an Irish immigrant and Pennsylvanian who was a brigadier general in the Revolutionary War.

With the Pennsylvania Militia

The heavily wooded county contains eight state parks. The five-acre Prouty Place State Park is the state’s second-smallest.

Prouty Run

Cherry Springs State Park is popular with astronomers and stargazers because it has some of the darkest night skies on the East Coast.

Pennsylvania’s first “dark sky park”

Cherry Springs also has Pennsylvania’s largest picnic pavilion constructed by the Civilian Conservation Corps (1939).

The county seat of Potter County is the borough of Coudersport (pop. 2,546), at the intersection of the Allegheny River and Mill Creek.

Potter County Courthouse (1853)

The Coudersport Theatre dates from 1923. It’s still showing movies.

The world’s only Coudersport Theatre

The annual God’s Country Marathon goes from Galeton to Coudersport.

Elliot Ness (1903-1957),  the legendary Prohibition agent who was credited with the downfall of Al Capone, died at his home in Coudersport.

As portrayed by Robert Stack

A major tourist attraction in Potter County is the Coudersport Ice Mine, with large icicles in the summer that melt in the winter. The cave was discovered in 1894.

Closed in winter, when there’s no ice

The Scottish Rite Consistory of Coudersport is one of Potter County’s largest buildings. The Consistory has about 3,000 members – more than the population of Coudersport.

Originally a private home

The Austin Dam Burst Site commemorates the site of the Austin Dam, which burst in 1911, resulting in the deaths of 78 people.

The dam served a paper mill.


Pennsylvania: McKean County

McKean County (pop. 43,450) is east of Warren County. It’s the only McKean County – named for Thomas McKean, Pennsylvania governor from 1799 to 1808.

McKean County in 1895

The county seat of McKean County is the borough of Smethport (pop. 1,655).

McKean County Courthouse (1942)

The coldest temperature ever recorded in Pennsylvania was -42 degrees in 1904 in Smethport.

Smethport’s elevation is 1,488 feet.

Smethport had America’s’ first year-round Christmas shop. It opened in 1935 and closed in 2005.

The athletic teams at Smethport Area High School are known as the “Hubbers,” because Smethport is the “hub” in the center of the county.

The Smethport Specialty Company began manufacturing the Wooly Willy magnetic toy in 1955.

The largest community in McKean County is the city of Bradford (pop. 8,870). The former oil boomtown reached its peak population of 19,306 in 1930.

Old City Hall (1897)

The Main Street Movie House is in the eight-story Art Deco Hooker-Fulton Building (1931).

Showing first-run movies

Bradford is the home of the Zippo Manufacturing Company, founded in 1932. Zippo is best known for its reusable metal lighters.

The Zippo museum

Bradford has a campus of the University of Pittsburgh. Established in 1963, it has about 1,500 students.

Opera star Marilyn Horne was born in Bradford in 1934. A Marilyn Horne Museum recently opened in Bradford.

The community of Eldred (pop. 825) has had a World War Two Museum since 1996. During the war, Eldred was the site of a munitions factory that employed 1,500 people.

The Kinzua Bridge (1882) was the fourth-tallest railroad bridge in the U.S., until it collapsed after being struck by a tornado in 2003. It was 301 feet high and 2,000 feet long.

Today, Kinzua Bridge State Park has a Sky Walk with a pedestrian walkway to a glass-floored observation deck.

225 feet up


Pennsylvania: Warren County

Warren County (pop. 41,815) is east of Erie and Crawford counties, on the border with New York. It’s one of 14 Warren counties.

All 14 Warren counties were named for Gen. Joseph Warren (1741-1775), who died in the Battle of Bunker Hill.

Much of the county is in the Allegheny National Forest, established in 1923 after most of the original forest (mostly Eastern hemlock and American beech)  had been logged. It’s now known for black cherry and walnut trees.

Hector Falls

The county seat of Warren County is the city of Warren (pop. 9,710). Warren’s population has been declining each decade since 1940, when the Census reported 14,891 residents.

On the Allegheny River

The Warren County Courthouse was built in 1877, in Second Empire style.

Statue of Justice on top













Oil was discovered in Warren in 1875, and the oil industry dominated the city’s economy for many years.

National City Bank Building (1891)

The Struthers Library Theatre dates from 1883. It originally was a library, opera house, and Masonic hall.  Now, it hosts concerts, community theater, and a film series.

Renovated in 1983

Most of the Gateway Arch in St. Louis was fabricated at the Pittsburgh Des Moines Steel Company plant in Warren in the early 1960s. A small replica stands in front of the Warren County Chamber of Business and Industry.

Gudrun Ensslin (1940-1977), one of the founders of the West Germany’s group the Baader-Meinhof Group, spent a year in high school (1958-59) in Warren. She died in a German prison.

Kinzua Dam was built 1960-65 on the Allegheny River, east of Warren. Construction required the forced relocation of 600 Seneca Indians, who lived on the Allegany Reservation in New York.

The reservoir extends 25 miles behind the dam.

Buffy Sainte-Marie’s “Now That the Buffalo’s Gone” and the Johnny Cash recording “As Long As the Grass Shall Grow” both commemorate the Seneca who were uprooted by the dam.

The borough of Tidioute (pop. 792), southwest of Warren, is home of both the Pennsylvania State Championship Fishing Tournament and an annual reenactment of the WWII battle at the Bridge at Remagen.

Over the Allegheny River


Pennsylvania: Crawford County

Crawford County (pop. 88,765) is south of Erie County, on the border with Ohio.

Crawford County in 1895

It is one of 11 Crawford counties, which were named for three different men named Crawford. This one was named for Col. William Crawford (1722-1782).

Crawford’s death

The county seat of Crawford County is the city of Meadville (pop. 13,388), which was the first permanent settlement in northwestern Pennsylvania.

The zipper, as we know it, was invented in Meadville. Talon Zipper, founded in 1893 in Chicago, began mass-producing zippers in Meadville in the 1920s.

No longer in Meadville

The Academy Theatre in Meadville opened in 1886 as an opera house called the Academy of Music. It was later a movie theater, and now hosts a variety of performing arts.

Restored in the 1990s

Meadville is the home of Allegheny College, a private liberal arts college founded in 1815. It has about 1,900 students.

Bentley Hall (1835)

Meadville is also the home of the PennDot (Pennsylvania Department of Transportation) Road Sign Sculpture Garden.

Murals and sculptures made of road signs

The Baldwin-Reynolds House Museum in Meadville was the home of U.S. Supreme Court Justice Henry Baldwin (1780-1844). It had Meadville’s first indoor plumbing.

Built in 1843

The city of Titusville (pop. 5,601), east of Meadville, has a campus of the University of Pittsburgh, established in 1963.

Primarily a two-year campus

The Drake Well Museum, south of Titusville, covers the birth of the oil industry by Edwin Drake in 1859.

Established in 1934

The Oil Creek and Titusville Railroad, a 16-mile tourist railroad, has a Caboose Motel.

21 caboose units

In the community of Linesville (pop. 1,040), it is popular to throw bread at the carp at the Spillway adjacent to Pymatuning Lake. It’s been called “Pennsylvania’s 2nd-Most Popular Tourist Attraction.”


Pennsylvania: Erie County

We begin our tour of Pennsylvania’s 67 counties in Erie County (pop. 280,566), in the state’s northwestern corner. It is the state’s only county on Lake Erie, and the only Pennsylvania county that borders Canada (across the lake).

The county was named for the lake, which was named by the Erie people, an Iroquoian group who lived along the southern shore. The only other Erie counties are in New York and Ohio.

The county seat of Erie County is Erie (pop. 101,786), Pennsylvania’s fourth-largest city. Erie reached its peak population of 138,440 in 1960.

Erie Land Light (1867)

The 14-story Renaissance Center (1928), formerly the Erie Trust Company Building, dominates the downtown Erie skyline.

Renovated in the 1990s

The Old Customshouse (1839) is now part of the Erie Art Museum.

The museum has five connected buildings.

The Warner Theatre (1931) closed as a movie theater in 1976. It’s now the home of the Erie Philharmonic and a variety of other concerts and touring shows.

The Grand Lobby

The Lawrence Park Dinor (a northwestern Pennsylvania variation of “diner”) has been in operation since 1948. It was manufactured by Silk City Diners of Paterson, N.J.

Known for “Greek sauce” on French fries

Erie is the northern terminus of the 343-mile Interstate 79. The southern terminus is Charleston, W.V. Amtrak’s “Lake Shore Limited” (Chicago to Boston and New York City) stops in Erie.

Union Station (1927)

The Erie SeaWolves, Double-A Eastern League affiliate of the Detroit Tigers, play at UPMC Park (1995) in downtown Erie. UPMC is the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center.

Formerly Jerry Uht Park

Actress Ann B. Davis (1926-2014) grew up in Erie. She graduated from the University of Michigan.

On “The Brady Bunch”

The Bicentennial Tower, built in 1996 to commemorate the city’s 200th birthday, has a 187-foot-high observation deck.

Views of Lake Erie, Presque Isle, and downtown Erie

Presque Isle State Park, on a long peninsula near Erie, is Pennsylvania’s most-visited state park. It has a marina and 13 beaches for swimming.

The borough of Edinboro (pop. 6,438), south of Erie, is the home of Edinboro University of Pennsylvania, a public university with about 6,000 students. It was founded in 1857 as a teachers’ college.