Lycoming County, Pennsylvania facts for kids

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Lycoming County, Pennsylvania
Map
Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lycoming County
Location in the state of Pennsylvania
Map of the USA highlighting Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania's location in the U.S.
Statistics
Founded April 13, 1795
Seat Williamsport
Largest City Williamsport
Area
 - Total
 - Land
 - Water

1,244 sq mi (3,222 km²)
1,229 sq mi (3,183 km²)
15 sq mi (39 km²), 1.2%
PopulationEst.
 - (2015)
 - Density

116,048
95/sq mi (37/km²)
Time zone Eastern: UTC-5/-4
Website: www.lyco.org
Named for: Lycoming Creek

Lycoming County is a county located in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. As of the 2010 census, the population was 116,111. Its county seat is Williamsport.

Lycoming County comprises the Williamsport, PA Metropolitan Statistical Area.

Located about 130 miles (209 km) northwest of Philadelphia and 165 miles (266 km) east-northeast of Pittsburgh, Lycoming County is the largest county in Pennsylvania in area.

History

Formation of the county

Lycoming County was formed from Northumberland County on April 13, 1795. The county was larger than it is today. It took up most of the land that is now north central Pennsylvania. The following counties have been formed from land that was once part of Lycoming County: Armstrong, Bradford, Centre, Clearfield, Clinton, Indiana, Jefferson, McKean, Potter, Sullivan, Tioga, Venango, Warren, Forest, Elk and Cameron. Lycoming County was originally named Jefferson County in honor of Thomas Jefferson. This name proved to be unsatisfactory. The name change went through several steps. First a change to Lycoming County was rejected, next the name Susquehanna County was struck down as was Muncy County, before the legislature revisited and settled on Lycoming County for Lycoming Creek, the stream that was the center of the pre-Revolutionary border dispute.

County "firsts"

1615: The first European in Lycoming County was Étienne Brûlé. He was a voyageur for New France. Brule descended the West Branch Susquehanna River and was held captive by a local Indian tribe near what is now Muncy before escaping and returning to Canada.

1761: The first permanent homes were built in Muncy. Three log cabins were built by Bowyer Brooks, Robert Roberts and James Alexander.

1772: The first gristmill is built on Muncy Creek by John Alward

1775: The first public road is built along the West Branch Susquehanna River. The road followed Indian trails from Fort Augusta in what is now Sunbury to Bald Eagle Creek near modern-day Lock Haven.

1786: The first church built in the county was Lycoming Presbyterian church in what was known as Jaysburg and is now the Newberry section of Williamsport.

1792: The first sawmill was built on Lycoming Creek by Roland Hall.

1795: The first elections for Lycoming County government are held soon after the county was formed from Northumberland County. The elected officers were Samuel Stewart, county sheriff and the first county commissioners were John Hanna, Thomas Forster and James Crawford. Andrew Gregg was elected to represent Lycoming County in the United States Congress, William Hepburn was voted to the Pennsylvania State Senate and Flavel Roan, Hugh White and Robert Martin served as representatives in the Pennsylvania General Assembly.

1823: The county government funded the construction of the first bridges over Loyalsock and Lycoming Creeks.

1839: The first railroad is built. It connected Williamsport with Ralston in northern Lycoming County. The railroad followed Lycoming Creek.

Geography

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 1,244 square miles (3,220 km2), of which 1,229 square miles (3,180 km2) is land and 15 square miles (39 km2) (1.2%) is water. Lycoming County is the largest county in Pennsylvania by land area and second-largest by total area; it is larger than the state of Rhode Island.

Appalachian Mountains and Allegheny Plateau

Junction fault 0112
Major fault at the dividing line between the Allegheny Plateau and the true Appalachian Mountains near Williamsport, Pennsylvania

Lycoming County is divided between the Appalachian Mountains in the south, the dissected Allegheny Plateau (which also appears mountainous) in the north and east, and the valley of the West Branch Susquehanna River between these.

West Branch Susquehanna River

The West Branch of the Susquehanna enters Lycoming County from Clinton County just west of the borough of Jersey Shore, which is on the northwest bank of the river. The river then flows generally east and a little north with some large curves for 15 miles (24 kilometers) to the city of Williamsport, followed by the borough of Montoursville (both on the north bank) as well as the boroughs of Duboistown and South Williamsport (on the south bank).

The river flows just north of Bald Eagle Mountain (one of the northernmost ridges of the Ridge-and-valley Appalachians) through much of its course in Lycoming County, but it passes the end of the mountain and turns south just before the borough of Muncy (on the east bank). It continues south past the borough of Montgomery and leaves Lycoming County, where it forms the border between Union and Northumberland Counties. From there the West Branch merges with the North Branch Susquehanna River at Northumberland, Pennsylvania, and then flows south to the Chesapeake Bay.

Major creeks and watersheds

Major Watersheds in Lycoming County Pennsylvania
Map of the West Branch Susquehanna River (dark blue) and Major Streams in Lycoming County, Pennsylvania. From west to east (left to right) the watersheds are: Pine Creek (red); Larrys Creek (orange); Lycoming Creek (yellow); Loyalsock Creek (green); Muncy Creek (light blue); and White Deer Hole Creek (purple, south of the river).

The major creeks of Lycoming County are all tributaries of the West Branch Susquehanna River. On the north or left bank of the river they are (from west to east): Pine Creek (and its tributary Little Pine Creek) which the river receives just west of Jersey Shore; Larrys Creek, which the river receives about 7 km (4 mi) south of Salladasburg; Lycoming Creek which the river receives in western Williamsport; Loyalsock Creek which the river receives between Williamsport and Montoursville; and Muncy Creek (and its tributary Little Muncy Creek), which the river receives just north of Muncy. Loyalsock and Muncy Creeks are also the major watersheds of Sullivan County.

Finally there is White Deer Hole Creek, the only major creek in Lycoming County on the right bank (i.e. south and west) of the river. It is south of Bald Eagle Mountain, and flows from west to east. The river receives it at the village of Allenwood in Gregg Township in Union County. Other creeks found on the right bank (south and west) of the West Branch Susquehanna River in Lycoming County are relatively minor, including Antes Creek in the Nippenose valley (in Limestone and Nippenose Townships), Mosquito Creek (at Duboistown), Hagermans Run (at South Williamsport), and Black Hole Creek (at Montgomery).

The entire county is in the Chesapeake Bay watershed. The percent of the county drained by each creek's watershed is as follows: Pine Creek, 15.27%; Little Pine Creek, 11.25% (if these two are considered together, 26.52%); Larry's Creek, 7.17%; Lycoming Creek, 17.80%; Loyalsock Creek, 13.23%; Muncy Creek, 4.82%; Little Muncy Creek, 5.86% (if these two are considered together, 10.68%); and White Deer Hole Creek, 4.40%. Minor creeks account for the rest.

Adjacent counties

Demographics

Historical population
Census Pop.
1800 5,414
1810 11,006 103.3%
1820 13,517 22.8%
1830 17,636 30.5%
1840 22,649 28.4%
1850 26,257 15.9%
1860 37,399 42.4%
1870 47,626 27.3%
1880 57,486 20.7%
1890 70,579 22.8%
1900 75,663 7.2%
1910 80,813 6.8%
1920 83,100 2.8%
1930 93,421 12.4%
1940 93,633 0.2%
1950 101,249 8.1%
1960 109,367 8.0%
1970 113,296 3.6%
1980 118,416 4.5%
1990 118,710 0.2%
2000 120,044 1.1%
2010 116,111 −3.3%
Est. 2015 116,048 −0.1%
U.S. Decennial Census
1790-1960 1900-1990
1990-2000 2010-2013

As of the census of 2000, there were 120,044 people, 47,003 households, and 31,680 families residing in the county. The population density was 97 people per square mile (38/km²). There were 52,464 housing units at an average density of 42 per square mile (16/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 93.91% White, 4.32% Black or African American, 0.21% Native American, 0.42% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 0.26% from other races, and 0.86% from two or more races. 0.67% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 38.5% were of German, 11.7% American, 9.0% Irish, 7.4% Italian and 7.3% English ancestry according to Census 2000.

Recreation

There are three Pennsylvania state parks in Lycoming County:

  • Little Pine State Park
  • Susquehanna State Park
  • Upper Pine Bottom State Park

There are parts of two Pennsylvania state forests in Lycoming County:

  • Tiadaghton State Forest in the southern and western parts of the county,
  • Loyalsock State Forest in the eastern part of the county.

Communities

Map of Lycoming County Pennsylvania With Municipal and Township Labels
Map of Lycoming County, Pennsylvania with Municipal Labels showing Cities and Boroughs (red), Townships (white), and Census-designated places (blue).
See also: List of municipalities in Lycoming County, Pennsylvania and List of villages in Lycoming County, Pennsylvania

Under Pennsylvania law, there are four types of incorporated municipalities: cities, boroughs, townships, and, in at most two cases, towns. The following cities, boroughs and townships are located in Lycoming County:

City

Boroughs

Townships

  • Anthony
  • Armstrong
  • Bastress
  • Brady
  • Brown
  • Cascade
  • Clinton
  • Cogan House
  • Cummings
  • Eldred
  • Fairfield
  • Franklin
  • Gamble
  • Hepburn
  • Jackson
  • Jordan
  • Lewis
  • Limestone
  • Loyalsock
  • Lycoming
  • McHenry
  • McIntyre
  • McNett
  • Mifflin
  • Mill Creek
  • Moreland
  • Muncy
  • Muncy Creek
  • Nippenose
  • Old Lycoming
  • Penn
  • Piatt
  • Pine
  • Plunketts Creek
  • Porter
  • Shrewsbury
  • Susquehanna
  • Upper Fairfield
  • Washington
  • Watson
  • Wolf
  • Woodward

Census-designated places

Census-designated places are geographical areas designated by the U.S. Census Bureau for the purposes of compiling demographic data. They are not actual jurisdictions under Pennsylvania law. Other unincorporated communities, such as villages, may be listed here as well.

Unincorporated communities

Population ranking

The population ranking of the following table is based on the 2010 census of Lycoming County.

county seat

Rank City/Town/etc. Municipal type Population (2010 Census)
1 Williamsport City 29,381
2 South Williamsport Borough 6,379
3 Montoursville Borough 4,615
4 Jersey Shore Borough 4,361
5 Kenmar CDP 4,124
6 Garden View CDP 2,503
7 Muncy Borough 2,477
8 Hughesville Borough 2,128
9 Montgomery Borough 1,579
10 Faxon CDP 1,395
11 Duboistown Borough 1,205
12 Rauchtown (mostly in Clinton County) CDP 726
13 Picture Rocks Borough 678
14 Oval CDP 361
15 Salladasburg Borough 238

Marcellus shale impact fee

Act 13 of 2012, which levied a Marcellus Shale Impact Fee, was signed into law by Governor Tom Corbett on February 14, 2012. The bill provides for the imposition of an unconventional well fee by county (or alternatively municipalities compelling the imposition of an unconventional well fee). A county may impose the fee if unconventional gas wells are located within its borders and it passes an ordinance within 60 days of the effective date of Act 13. A county that did not pass an ordinance imposing a fee is prohibited from receiving funds. This prohibition remains in effect until a county passes an ordinance imposing a fee.

In 2015, Lycoming County received an impact fee disbursement of $3,727,886.78 which was among the top seven counties receiving funds. The top county recipient was Washington County which received $6,512,570.65 in 2014. Cogan House Township received $798,627.10 making it one of the top seven receiving municipalities. Lycoming County had 877 marcellus shale wells. Cummings Township had 248 wells and Cogan House Township had 180 wells.

In 2014, Lycoming County received an impact fee disbursement of $4,822,064 which was among the top seven counties receiving funds. The top county recipient was Washington County which received $6,512,570.65 in 2014. In 2014, there were 873 marcellus shale wells in Lycoming County. Cogan House Township was the top receiving municipality in Lycoming County getting $852,291.25.

  • 2013 - 768 shale wells, impact fee revenues to Lycoming County - $5,099521.27
  • 2012 - 649 shale wells, impact fee revenues to Lycoming County - $4,375,741.90
  • 2011 - 445 shale wells.

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