Clearfield County: Land of Natural Resources

Clearfield County, believed named for the cleared fields found by early settlers in the area, belies its name; 83 percent of the county’s 1,143.5 square miles is still forested today. Its present timber, however, is second and third growth. Although its forest lands support some lumbering, the county’s economic life depends mostly upon coal and clay in­dustries and the manufacture of...
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Centre County

Centre County, as its name implies, geographically is Pennsylvania’s central county. The first known residents to inhabit its lands were the Munsee and Shawnee Indians from the Delaware River. Before 1725 these Indians began to move westward, first to the Susquehanna, later to the Ohio. The Iroquois, who claimed the Susquehanna country, assigned one of their chiefs – a man best known...
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Transportation in Pennsylvania in 1776

During the Revolution, Pennsylvania was a central stage from the standpoint of geography, leadership, manpower, and supplies. Therefore, its transportation facilities were of special significance. The southeastern part of the State produced large quantities of the very materials needed by the Continental Army. A modest network of roads made possible the transporting of those materials to Valley...
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A Salute to the Bicentennial of the Keystone State

The current Bicentennial celebration commemorates not the birth of the United States, but the proclama­tion of thirteen British-American colonies that were “free and independent states” as of July 4, 17.76. When they formed a loose compact in 1761, their articles of confederation declared that “each state retains its sover­eignty, freedom and independence.” The...
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Pennsylvania Places through the Bird’s-Eye Views of T.M. Fowler

During the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, America indulged in a love affair with panoramic drawings of urban areas, known – aptly but simply­ – as town views. Some were drawn at ground level, or from a modest elevation (such as a hill or tall building) and often depicted a skyline. Others, made from an aerial perspective, were known as bal­loon views, aero views and,...
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Lost and Found

Lost In 1845, less than five years after entering politics, William Bigler (1814-1880) built a handsome Italianate-style residence in Clearfield. Before settling in the Clearfield County seat, he apprenticed with his brother John at The Centre De­mocrat, published in Bellefonte, Centre County. In Clearfield, he amassed a fortune in the lumber business. He served in the state senate from 1841 to...
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New York Central Railroad Station, Philipsburg, Pa.

Until railroads reached Philipsburg in the mid-nineteenth century, the small Centre County community was primarily a hub of local commerce. Founded in 1797 on the east side of Moshannon Creek by a thirty-year-old entrepreneur, Henry Phillips (1767–1800), the community owed its economic boom of the second half of the nineteenth century to the proverbial coming of the railroad. Philipsburg was...
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