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.


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