Hazleton, PA, Through the Centuries

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Learn more about the City of Hazleton through this informative article presented by the abuse lawyers in Hazleton.

History of Hazleton

Hazleton is the second-largest city in the county of Luzerne, Pennsylvania. The area was the site of the Sugarloaf Massacre in 1780 when Captain Klafer's men were ambushed by loyalists militiamen and the Seneca tribe during the American Revolutionary War. After the war, the Moravian missionaries were sent to the site to bury the dead soldiers. Some decided to stay, so in 1782, the St. Johns settlement was built along the Nescopeck Creek.

In 1809, entrepreneur Jacob Drumheller built the first building in Hazleton at the intersection of the Berwick Turnpike – the former "Warrior Trail" that had been used by the Moravians since the early 1700s – and a road connecting Wilkes-Barre to McKeansburg. However, it was engineer Ariovistus Pardee who is known to be the founding father of the city. In 1818, railroad developers in Philadelphia hired Pardee to survey the topography in Beaver Meadows to see whether they should extend a railroad from Jim Thorpe to Beaver Meadows after they heard about the anthracite coal deposits discovered by Nathaniel Beach and Tench Coxe. During his survey, Pardee went ahead and purchased many acres of land in present-day Hazelton, which was adjacent to Beavers Meadow. Hed laid out the patch of town that would be Hazelton.

In 1836, the Hazleton Coal Company was incorporated as the rail link to the Lehigh Valley was in its final stage of completion. The first school, church and private school were built. From the mid-1800s to the mid-1900s, the coal industry attracted many immigrants to the town who were looking for labor. The coal mined in the area fueled the blast furnaces at the Bethlehem Steel Corporation and established the U.S. as a world industrial power.

On January 5, 1857, Hazleton, which was supposed to originally be "Hazelton" but stuck around after a clerk misspelled it, was incorporated as a borough. On December 4, 1891, it was incorporated as a city. In 1891, the city was the third in the U.S. to establish a citywide electric grid.

After World War II, the demand for coal declined as electricity and natural gas became the main power sources. During the difficult time, the city was also hit by Hurricane Diane and Hurricane Hazel, which flooded the mines, bringing an end to deep mining in the area. Nonetheless, Hazleton still prospered as the Duplan Silk Corporation opened in 1899. It went on to become the largest silk mill in the world. The economy of the city is now based on manufacturing and shipping. As of the 2010 census, Hazleton has a population of 25,340 people and a total area of 6.0 square miles.

You can also Learn All About Pottstown, PA.

Parks and Recreation

There is a number of parks and outdoor entertainment that serve the residents and visitors of the Hazleton area. Some of which include:

  • Altmiller Playground
  • Greater Hazleton Rails To Trails
  • Hazleton Township Community Park & Soccer Fields
  • Hickory Run State Park
  • Lehigh Gorge State Park
  • Memorial Park
  • Edgewood In The Pines Golf Course
  • Valley Country Club Golf Course (Private)
  • Eagle Rock Resort (Private)
  • Whitewater Challenge

Another recreational space that the city had was the Paragon Off-Road Adventure Park. However, it was permanently closed in 2007.

Historic Sites

Although Hazleton has developed throughout the centuries, there are still many historic locations and architecture that depict American urbanism of the eras before World War II. These historic sites are the Duplan Slik Building, the Altamont Hotel, St. Gabriel's Catholic Parish Complex, Saint Joseph Slovak Roman Catholic Church, The Hazleton National Bank, Markle Banking & Trust Company Building, the Traders Bank Building, the MPB Community Players, the Nuremberg Community Players, the Pennsylvania Theatre of Performing Arts (PTPA), the march of the Lattimer Massacre, Eckley Miners' Village, and Israel Platt Pardee Mansion.

Israel Platt Pardee Mansion

Israel Platt Pardee Mansion was built in 1893 and designed by architect George Franklin Barber. of the Queen Anne architectural style. The 3-story, 19 room, clapboarded Victorian historic home was the residence of Israel Platt Pardee, the son of Ariovistus Pardee. The property, which includes a carriage house, was listed on the National Register of Historic Places (NRHP) on January 12, 1984.

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