Historical Markers
Pennsylvania Historical Marker
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Philadelphia and its Countryside/Lehigh Valley


Marker Location:
Pa. 413, .4 miles west of bridge at state line

Dedication Date:
November 11, 1949

Behind the Marker

Colorful County Map of Pennsylvania.
Counties of Pennsylvania
For more than five thousand years before the Europeans arrived on America's shores, Indians lived in the territory we now call Pennsylvania. Research and documentation indicate that these early inhabitants were the descendents of an Asiatic race. It is widely believed that over the course of many centuries a new race evolved, adapting to the environment. With the arrival of the Europeans these earlier inhabitants were often times brutally forced to give up their land or lives. In the early days of European migration to North America, fear and distrust led to turmoil and wars. William Penn's arrival promised new hope that European-Indian relations would improve.

Long before Penn's New World colony, named Pennsylvania, was claimed and established, immigrants from all over Europe had already sailed to North America in search of their own new worlds. In fact, no other colony had such a diverse mixture of religions, languages, and nationalities. Many of the people who fled to the New World did so in search of religious freedom, escaping persecution and most assuredly carrying the hope of designing a new world based on toleration for their many diverse and conspicuous dogmas.

Although William Penn is considered to be the founding father of Pennsylvania - and as Thomas Jefferson wrote, perhaps "the greatest lawgiver the world has produced" - many others played a role in creating the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Commonwealth means "well-being of the public," and in Pennsylvania all legal processes are carried out in the name of the Commonwealth.

The mostly mountainous surface of Pennsylvania is part of the Appalachian Mountain region. In Pennsylvania there are three major river systems: the Delaware, the Susquehanna, and the Ohio. Conclusively there are 1000 square miles of lakes and rivers in Pennsylvania. These three major rivers and the ones that flow into them played a vital role in the formation of the state's cities, industry, and transportation development. Pennsylvania is referred to as the "Keystone State." In an arch, the keystone holds all the other stones in place.

Today, Pennsylvania's population is estimated to be over 12,000,000, and it is the consensus that the majority of these citizens were born in Pennsylvania. It is interesting to note that native Pennsylvanians are more likely to remain in the state of their birth, in fact more than residents of any other state in the nation.

From the famous city grid plan of William Penn's Philadelphia to the Pennsylvania Turnpike, America has used Pennsylvania's innovative patterns for progress as "keystones" in the arches of our developing nation. Pennsylvanians can be proud to be a part of such a prominent and industrious state.
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