York County History: Timeline

1696 William Penn purchases, from the Iroquois, the land that would later
become York County

1727 Digges Choice is established in Southwestern York County

1728 German settlers move into the Kruetz Creek area of York County, the
first authorized settlement

1734 The oldest known house still standing in York County, the John and
Christina Shultz House, is built in East York

1741 York Town is laid out in grid formation, patterned after Philadelphia 

1741 Golden Plough Tavern Opens in York

1749 York County created

1756 The first York County Couthouse is built in Centre (now Continental)
Square.  A replica of this structure stands today along West Market Street

1763 Hanover is laid out and named for Hannover, Germany

1765 The Nation's Oldest Fair — the Great York Fair – Debuts

1775-ish Codorus Furnace and Forge Manufacturers Ammo for Revolutionary War

1777-1778 York City Serves as Capital of the United States, home of the Second Continental Congress

1777 The first national Thanksgiving is declared to celebrate a Colonial Army victory in Saratoga

1781 Camp Security is constructed

1800 Adams County is created from York County

1804 The Red Lion Tavern, namesake of Red Lion Borough, is constructed

1811 The Pfaltzgraff Company is Founded in York

1813 The first Columbia-Wrightsville Bridge is built over the Susquehanna
River -- it is a covered bridge

1823 One of the earliest Chirstmas Trees in the United States is dispalyed
in York

1825 The First Iron Steamboat in the United States is Built in York

1831 The First Coal Locomotive in the United States is Built in York

1832 The Columbia-Wrightsville Bridge is destroyed by ice along the river;
a new bridge is completed in 1824

1841 The first York County Courthouse and adjacent Statehouse are
demolished, a new Courthouse is completed on East Market Street

1863 The Wrightsville-Columbia Bridge, spanning the Susquehanna River, is burned by Union Troops Fleeing the Confederate Army

1863 The Battle of Hanover delays the Confederate Calvary’s arrival in Gettysburg

1863 Abraham Lincoln speaks briefly in Hanover, one day after his
Gettysburg Address

1864 P.H. Glatfelter Opens Paper Manufacturing Plant in Spring Grove

1866 The Farmers Market on West Market Street is built

1868 The third Columbia-Wrightsville Bridge is completed, and is still a
covered bridge

1874 York Manufacturing Co. — now York International Corp. — Begins Operations in York

1878 York City Market is constructed

1893 The Colonial Hotel on Continental Square is completed

1898 The Bon-Ton Department Store Begins Operations in Downtown York

1899 The Third York County Courthouse is constructed at the location of the
Second Courthouse

1899 Dentsply International Begins Operations in York

Early 1900s York Becomes on of Nation's Top Automobile Manufacturers

1913 The Lincoln Highway is created through York County

1925 The Hotel Yorktowne opens

1930 A new Columbia-Wrightsville Bridge opens

1932 The York Barbell Co. Begins Operations in York

Late 1930s The York Peppermint Patty is Developed and Produced in York

1940s The York Plan Becomes a National Model for Wartime Manufacturing

1948 BMY — Predecessor of United Defense — Begins Production of Armored Fighting Vehicles

1948 The Shoe House is constructed along present-day Route 30

1950 The Pennsylvania Turnpike opens in northern York County

1953 The Caterpillar Tractor Co. Opens a Major Manufacturing Facility in York

1974 Harley-Davidson Opens Final Assembly Plant in York

1994 Starbucks Coffee Company Opens Coffee Roasting Plant in York

2002-2003 York City Renaissance Continues with the opening of the Susquehanna Commerce Center, York County Judicial Center, and expansion of Strand-Capitol Performing Arts Center

These are but a few milestones in York County's rich history.  For a detailed, year-by-year account of York County's history, surf over to the York Daily Record Web site's "York County History" section at: http://www.ydr.com/history/.

Return to History Channel

© 1999, 2002 by Scott D. Butcher

Virtual York • Geographic Channel • Architectural Channel
History Channel • Discovery Channel • About Us • Bibliography
Library • Feedback • Order Form • YorkLinks Home