HERITAGE

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CHESTER COUNTY'S IRON COUNTRY

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Western Chester County is

full of Science, Art, industry, Agriculture and Commerce.  

 

One of the most notable companies in the region's history is:

 

Lukens Steel, along the Brandywine River

Lukens Steel Company, located in Coatesville, Pennsylvania, is the oldest steel mill in commission within the United States.

The history of the Lukens Steel Company dates back to 1810 when Issac Pennock established the Brandywine Iron Works and Nail Factory in Coatesville along the banks of the Brandywine River. The river’s water power and the mill’s location near the Philadelphia to Lancaster Turnpike (later to become U.S. Route 30) made the site ideal for iron production and transportation. Eventually ownership passed to Pennock’s daughter, Rebecca Webb Pennock Lukens. Lukens Steel Company, produced rolled iron plate in sufficient quantity – the first iron of its strength and quality in the country. 

Visit the museum and tour the Historic homes, Terracina and Graystone Mansion, of the Lukens and Huston families, founders Lukens Steel Co;

Tours are available on Monday-Saturday from 10am-4pm. 

Historical Trail 

Sadsbury Meeting House 

Sadsbury was once part of a vast wilderness traversed by the Shawnee and Susquehanna Indians. Original settlers in Sadsbury Township were Scotch Irish Presbyterians and Friends. Friends attended the New Garden Monthly Meeting of Chester Quarterly Meeting.

The original meeting house was built in 1725. In 1747, a larger meeting house, the present stone building, was built. The building suffered damage during the Revolutionary War. The woodwork was burned, but Joseph Guest restored the meeting house, putting a ceiling where the galleries had been.

Friends of Martins Tavern & Blacksmith Shop

Revolutionary War-era tavern and inn along with an historic Blacksmith Shop in the village of Marshallton, West Bradford Township

Old Caln Meeting House

The meeting house is the oldest building in Caln Township. For three centuries this has been a place of worship for Quakers, or members of “The Religious Society of Friends of the Truth”.  Built in 1726, the east room was added in 1801 to accommodate quarterly meetings held by Quakers from the surrounding region. 

Hopewell Furnace

National Historic Site near Elverson, Pennsylvania, 

showcases an early American industrial landscape from natural resource extraction to enlightened conservation. Operating from 1771-1883, Hopewell and other "iron plantations" laid the foundation for the transformation of the United States into an industrial giant. The park's 848 acres and historic structures illustrate the business, technology and lifestyle of our growing nation.

Mercers Mill Covered Bridge

or Mercer's Ford Covered Bridge is a covered bridge that spans the East branch of the Octoraro Creek on the border between Lancaster County and Chester County in Pennsylvania

Hibernia Mansion, as you see it today, reflects the changes of lifestyle and social status of its various owners for over two hundred years. Long the home of Ironmasters, it expanded with their increased prosperity. When strolling along the quiet paths through the 990-acre Hibernia Park, or fishing on the shady banks of the Brandywine Creek, it is hard to imagine that the mansion was once the site of a bustling iron industry, gone for over one hundred years

Created in 1982, the Chester County Archives was established to preserve and make available the historic records of Chester County.  The archives currently holds over 2,940 volumes and 1,823 cubic feet of original public records of enduring historic and cultural value.  Serving over 3,000 researchers a year, the archives is a primary destination for genealogists, property researchers, local historians and academics researching all facets of Chester County history.   
 

Native Americans of the Region:

The original inhabitants of the Brandywine Valley were an Algonquin Indian tribe who called themselves Lenape (len-ah'-pay), meaning "common people". The tribe's traditional homelands included northern Delaware, eastern Pennsylvania, southern New Jersey and southeastern New York. 

The first settlement near what is now Coatesville, was an Indian village which had grown as a trading center and as a market for the fur trapping industry. 

CHESCOWEST.com is maintained by the

Western Chester County Chamber of Commerce

 

610-384-9550
Communications Coordinator- Rachel Cathell
rachel@westernchestercounty.com
50 South First Avenue 
Coatesville, PA 19320
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