Susquehanna County, Pennsylvania facts for kids

Kids Encyclopedia Facts
Susquehanna County, Pennsylvania
Map
Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Susquehanna County
Location in the state of Pennsylvania
Map of the USA highlighting Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania's location in the U.S.
Statistics
Founded October 13, 1812
Seat Montrose
Largest borough Forest City
Area
 - Total
 - Land
 - Water

832 sq mi (2,155 km²)
823 sq mi (2,132 km²)
8.7 sq mi (23 km²), 1.0%
PopulationEst.
 - (2015)
 - Density

41,666
51/sq mi (20/km²)
Time zone Eastern: UTC-5/-4
Website: www.susqco.com
Named for: Susquehanna River

Susquehanna County is a county located in the U.S. state of Pennsylvania. As of the 2010 census, the population was 43,356. Its county seat is Montrose. The county was created on February 21, 1810, from part of Luzerne County and later organized in 1812. It is named for the Susquehanna River.

History

Settlement and conflict

The first settlers began to move into the area from Philadelphia and Connecticut in the mid 1700s. At the time, the area was part of Luzerne County. As more and more people from Connecticut moved in, there began to be some conflict. Under Connecticut's land grant, they owned everything from present day Connecticut to the Pacific Ocean. This meant their land grant overlapped with Pennsylvania's land grant. Soon fighting began. In the end, the Connecticut government was asked to surrender their claim on the area, which they did.

Formation

In 1810, Susquehanna County was formed out of Luzerne County and later in 1812, Montrose was made the county seat.

Civil War

Susquehanna County was one of the main stops on the Underground Railroad. Although this is not completely backed up by fact, there are many pointers saying this is true. These pointers say Montrose was the main hub. Here slaves would take refuge in the homes of citizens.

Coal and early prosperity

After the Civil War, coal started to be mined. Following this, railways and roads were built into the county allowing for more people to come. At one point the county had nearly 50,000 people. Coal became, as with neighboring counties, the back bone of the economy. This boom in coal would allow for an age of prosperity in the county.

Great Depression

When the Great Depression hit, the coal industry suffered horribly. Within months the coal industry was struggling. During World War II the coal industry picked up again, but only for a short time. Soon after the economy in the county failed. Between the 1950s and 1990s many mines were closed, railways were torn apart, and the economy took a turn for the worse. Unemployment rose and population decline increased.

Geography

Woman with display at Milk Can Corners, Hallstead, Pennsylvania, 1991
Milk Can Corners in Hallstead

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 832 square miles (2,150 km2), of which 823 square miles (2,130 km2) is land and 8.7 square miles (23 km2) (1.0%) is water.

Susquehanna County is very mountainous, with large concentrations of mountains in the east and smaller, more hill-like mountains in the west. The highest mountain in the county is North Knob just west of Union Dale. Most people live in one of the several long and mostly narrow valleys. These valleys are good farming land.

Adjacent counties

Demographics

Historical population
Census Pop.
1820 9,960
1830 16,787 68.5%
1840 21,195 26.3%
1850 28,688 35.4%
1860 36,267 26.4%
1870 37,523 3.5%
1880 40,354 7.5%
1890 40,093 −0.6%
1900 40,043 −0.1%
1910 37,746 −5.7%
1920 34,763 −7.9%
1930 33,806 −2.8%
1940 33,893 0.3%
1950 31,970 −5.7%
1960 33,137 3.7%
1970 34,344 3.6%
1980 37,876 10.3%
1990 40,380 6.6%
2000 42,238 4.6%
2010 43,356 2.6%
Est. 2015 41,666 −3.9%
U.S. Decennial Census
1790-1960 1900-1990
1990-2000 2010-2013
Susquehanna Depot PA
Susquehanna Depot Main Street

As of the census of 2000, there were 42,238 people, 16,529 households, and 11,785 families residing in the county. The population density was 51 people per square mile (20/km²). There were 21,829 housing units at an average density of 26 per square mile (10/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 98.54% White, 0.30% Black or African American, 0.15% Native American, 0.22% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 0.17% from other races, and 0.60% from two or more races. 0.67% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 26% were of English, 16.1% were of German, 15.1% Irish, 8.6% Italian and 7.7% Polish ancestry according to the 2012 American Community Survey.

There were 16,529 households out of which 31.90% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 57.70% were married couples living together, 8.60% had a female householder with no husband present, and 28.70% were non-families. 24.30% of all households were made up of individuals and 11.50% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.53 and the average family size was 2.99.

Birth rate

In the county, the population was spread out with 25.50% under the age of 18, 6.70% from 18 to 24, 27.10% from 25 to 44, 25.20% from 45 to 64, and 15.50% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 40 years. For every 100 females there were 98.90 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 95.80 males. Susquehanna County's live birth rate was 612 births in 1990. The County's live birth rate in 2000 was 499 births, while in 2011 it had declined to 374 babies.

Teen Pregnancy rate

Susquehanna County had a 318 babies born to teens (age15-19) in 2011. In 2015, the number of teen births in Susquehanna County was 265.

County poverty demographics

According to research by The Center for Rural Pennsylvania, which is a legislative agency of the Pennsylvania General Assembly, the poverty rate for Susquehanna County was 12.8% in 2014. The statewide poverty rate was 13.6% in 2014. The 2012 childhood poverty rate by school district was: Blue Ridge School District - 42.9% living at 185% or below than the Federal Poverty Level; Montrose Area School District - 32%; Elk Lake School District - 45.3%; Forest City Regional School District - 53.7%; Mountain View School District - 48.8% and Susquehanna Community School District - 55.8%.

Transportation

Major Highways

  • I-81
  • US 11
  • PA 29
  • PA 92
  • PA 171

Rail

Susquehanna County's last mainstream passenger train services ended in the late 1970s. Since then mainly freight trains have used the lines.

Air

Although Susquehanna County boasts several airstrips, they are strictly recreational. The closest main airports are in Binghamton, New York and Scranton, Pennsylvania.

Recreation

There is one Pennsylvania state park in Susquehanna County:

  • Salt Springs State Park is 7 miles (11 km) north of Montrose, just off Pennsylvania Route 29.

Susquehanna County is located in the Endless Mountains of northeastern Pennsylvania. Susquehanna County is rural in nature. In 2010, it ranked 54th out of 67 Pennsylvania counties for population density per square mile at 52.7 people per square mile.

Communities

Susquehanna County, Pennsylvania, Municipalities
Map of Susquehanna County with municipalities labeled.

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

Boroughs

Townships

  • Apolacon
  • Ararat
  • Auburn
  • Bridgewater
  • Brooklyn
  • Choconut
  • Clifford
  • Dimock
  • Forest Lake
  • Franklin
  • Gibson
  • Great Bend
  • Harford
  • Harmony
  • Herrick
  • Jackson
  • Jessup
  • Lathrop
  • Lenox
  • Liberty
  • Middletown
  • New Milford
  • Oakland
  • Rush
  • Silver Lake
  • Springville
  • Thompson

Population ranking

The population ranking of boroughs in the following table is based on the 2010 census of Susquehanna County.

county seat

Images for kids

Rank City/Town/etc. Municipal type Population (2010 Census)
1 Forest City Borough 1,911
2 Susquehanna Depot Borough 1,643
3 Montrose Borough 1,617
4 Hallstead Borough 1,303
5 New Milford Borough 868
6 Great Bend Borough 734
7 Oakland Borough 616
8 Aravat Township 563
9 Lanesboro Borough 506
10 Hop Bottom Borough 337
11 Thompson Borough 299
12 Little Meadows Borough 273
13 Union Dale Borough 267

Susquehanna County, Pennsylvania Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.