Located in the north-central region of Pennsylvania, Lycoming County is a peaceful and beautiful county that's steeped in American history and culture. From its rich natural resources to its important role in the country's past, Lycoming County has a lot to offer. Here are seven interesting facts about Lycoming County in Pennsylvania history.
1. The county was named after the Lycoming Creek
The name Lycoming was derived from a Lenape word meaning "sandy stream," which referred to the Lycoming Creek, the county's most significant watercourse. The Lycoming Creek once played a crucial role in the county's development by providing water transportation for the logging and lumber industries.
2. Lycoming is one of the largest counties in the state
Lycoming County is the largest county in the state of Pennsylvania by landmass, with 1,244 square miles. The county is also the most populous in north-central Pennsylvania, with a population of approximately 113,661 residents.
3. It was the site of the first Declaration of Independence reading
On July 4, 1776, the Declaration of Independence was read for the first time in public at the newly built Lycoming County courthouse in Williamsport. This event would later become known as Williamsport's Fourth of July Celebration, an event that's still held annually.
4. The world's first complete packaged airplane engine was produced here
In the early 1900s, Lycoming was home to the Lycoming Foundry and Machine Company, which produced the first complete packaged airplane engine in the world. The company's success helped put Williamsport on the map as a center of aviation technology and production.
5. The county was a key stop on the Underground Railroad
During the Underground Railroad era, Lycoming County was known as a significant stop for escaped slaves making their journey to freedom in the north. Many locations within the county served as safe houses, including the famous Peter Herdic House.
6. Williamsport was once known as the lumber capital of the world
From the 1860s through the early 1900s, Williamsport was the wealthiest city per capita in the world due to its booming lumber industry. The city's wealth was built on the vast forests that covered the area and the extensive transportation systems that brought lumber from the wilderness to the sawmills.
7. Little League Baseball was established here
Lycoming County is also the birthplace of Little League Baseball. In 1939, Carl Stotz established the first Little League here in Williamsport. Today, the Little League World Series held annually in South Williamsport attracts thousands of visitors from around the world.
In conclusion, Lycoming County is rich in history and culture and has played an essential role in shaping Pennsylvania's history and development. From its natural resources and aviation technology to its agriculture and sports, Lycoming County's history is fascinating and worth exploring.
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