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Potter County is a small, but much-loved county in Pennsylvania, with an interesting and vibrant history. From the deep forests and rolling hills, to the small towns and rich culture, Potter County has a lot to offer that many people may not know. Here are seven interesting facts about Potter County in Pennsylvania history.

1. Often referred to as the “God’s Country,” Potter County is known for its rural charm, bountiful wildlife, and stunning natural beauty. The county boasts vast expanses of forest, including the Susquehannock State Forest, the largest state forest in Pennsylvania, as well as Cherry Springs State Park, one of the best places in the world for stargazing.

2. The county was formed in 1804 and named after James Potter who was a brigadier general and hero of the American Revolution. This historic county was once home to numerous Native American tribes, including the Seneca-Iroquois, the Susquehannock, and the Erie.

3. The county struggled financially for many years, until the discovery of natural gas in the early 20th century. The gas boom led to an influx of jobs and money into the region, transforming Potter County into a major player in the U.S. energy industry.

4. In 1894, the Austin Dam was built on the Freeman Run to provide water supply for the thriving lumber industry in Austin. Unfortunately, the dam failed in 1911, causing the river to flood and wiping out the town. This tragic event was the first in U.S. history to be captured on a motion picture camera.

5. Cherry Springs State Park is home to some of the darkest skies in the northeast, making it one of the best places in the world for stargazing. In fact, the park has been designated as a Gold Level dark sky park by the International Dark-Sky Association, making it one of just a handful of places in the world with such distinction.

6. The county is also home to the historic Kinzua Viaduct, which was once the tallest and longest railroad bridge in the world. Built in 1882, the viaduct spanned 2,053 feet and rose 301 feet above the valley floor. Tragically, in 2003, a tornado destroyed a large portion of the bridge, but it has since been restored and now serves as a popular tourist attraction.

7. Potter County was also the base for the famous movie “The Unforgiven” which was directed by Clint Eastwood and was released in 1992. The movie was mostly shot in Wyoming County, but the preparatory work, including casting and crew training, was done in Potter County.

In conclusion, Potter County, Pennsylvania, has a rich and fascinating history, with a deep connection to the natural beauty of its surroundings. From the historic towns and incredible natural wonders, Potter County has much to explore and discover that is sure to draw in people from all over the world.

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