kids encyclopedia robot

Upper Merion Township, Pennsylvania facts for kids

Kids Encyclopedia Facts
Quick facts for kids
Upper Merion Township, Pennsylvania

Upper Merion Township
Bridge near Gulph Mills
Bridge near Gulph Mills
Location of Upper Merion Township, Pennsylvania
Upper Merion Township, Pennsylvania is located in Pennsylvania
Upper Merion Township, Pennsylvania
Upper Merion Township, Pennsylvania
Location in Pennsylvania
Upper Merion Township, Pennsylvania is located in the United States
Upper Merion Township, Pennsylvania
Upper Merion Township, Pennsylvania
Location in the United States
Country  United States of America
State  Pennsylvania
County Montgomery
Incorporated 1713
 • Total 17.27 sq mi (44.74 km2)
 • Land 16.96 sq mi (43.91 km2)
 • Water 0.32 sq mi (0.82 km2)
171 ft (52 m)
 • Total 28,395
 • Estimate 
 • Density 1,689.08/sq mi (652.17/km2)
Time zone UTC-5 (EST)
 • Summer (DST) UTC-4 (EDT)
Area code(s) 610 484
FIPS code 42-091-79136

Upper Merion Township is a township in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, United States. The population was 28,395 at the 2010 U.S. Census. Located 16 miles (26 km) from Philadelphia, it consists of the villages of Gulph Mills, King of Prussia, Swedeland, Swedesburg, and portions of Radnor and Wayne.

The westernmost part of the township comprises the largest part of the 1,300-acre (5 km2) Valley Forge National Historical Park. The township is the home of the King of Prussia mall. King of Prussia also contains a major office park hosting firms such as Lockheed Martin and GlaxoSmithKline.

The name Merion originates with the county of Merioneth in north Wales. Merioneth is an English-language translation of the Welsh Meirionnydd, itself named after Meirchion (or Meirion), grandson of Cunedda Wledig (b. ca. 380 A.D.), King of North Wales.


The Township's incorporation dates to 1713 when the King of Prussia Inn, the Bird-In-Hand Inn in Gulph Mills, and later the Swedes Ford Inn were required to pay 6 shillings to the Pennsylvania legislature for licenses. The King of Prussia Inn, built in 1719, captures the historical flavor of the township. It was named in honor of Frederick the Great, but became known during the Revolutionary War as a center of food and drink. An alternate story says the Inn, first called Berry’s Tavern, got its name to lure in Prussian mercenaries who spent freely.

Upper Merion Township is a township of the second class under Pennsylvania state statutes. A five-member Board of Supervisors, elected at large for staggered six-year terms, governs it. The Board passes legislation and sets overall policy for the Township. A professional township manager runs the day-to-day operations overseeing the activities of 250 full and part-time employees.

In the late 1970s, Upper Merion was also listed as the number one drug school in the magazine "High Times".

Hanging Rock and Poplar Lane are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.


According to the United States Census Bureau, the township has a total area of 17.2 square miles (44.7 km2), of which, 16.9 square miles (43.7 km2) of it is land and 0.4 square miles (1.0 km2) of it (2.20%) is water.

Notable sights

Upper Merion Township is home to Valley Forge National Historical Park, which consists of the site where General George Washington and the Continental Army made their encampment at Valley Forge during the winter of 1777–78 in the American Revolutionary War. King of Prussia, which is the third largest mall in the United States in terms of leasable space with over 450 stores, is located in Upper Merion Township. Other points of interest in Upper Merion Township include the Valley Forge Casino Resort, the King of Prussia Town Center and the King of Prussia Volunteer Fire Company 9/11 Memorial.

Old swedes
Old Swedes Church (Christ Church) Upper Merion, Swedesburg, PA

Old Swedes Church (Christ Church) was dedicated June 25, 1760 in Swedesburg, replacing a simple log cabin dating to 1735. The original church had served as both a church and school until Christ Church was built. The stained glass windows tell the story of the history of the Swedish colony of New Sweden.

After crossing the Schuylkill River at Swedesford on December 13, 1777, General George Washington and his troops visited Old Swedes Church and encamped there before going on to Valley Forge.


Historical population
Census Pop.
1930 5,889
1940 6,143 4.3%
1950 6,404 4.2%
1960 17,096 167.0%
1970 23,743 38.9%
1980 26,138 10.1%
1990 25,722 −1.6%
2000 26,863 4.4%
2010 28,395 5.7%
2020 33,613 18.4%

As of the 2010 census, the township was 76.0% White, 5.5% Black or African American, 0.2% Native American, 14.7% Asian, and 2.1% were two or more races. 3.9% of the population were of Hispanic or Latino ancestry [1].

As of the census of 2000, there were 26,863 people, 11,575 households, and 7,141 families residing in the township. The population density was 1,593.3 people per square mile (615.2/km2). There were 12,151 housing units at an average density of 720.7/sq mi (278.3/km2). The racial makeup of the township was 84.75% White, 4.63% African American, 0.13% Native American, 8.45% Asian, 0.05% Pacific Islander, 0.66% from other races, and 1.32% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.79% of the population.

There were 11,575 households, out of which 23.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 52.3% were married couples living together, 6.8% had a female householder with no husband present, and 38.3% were non-families. 29.7% of all households were made up of individuals, and 7.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.30 and the average family size was 2.91.

In the township the population was spread out, with 18.7% under the age of 18, 7.5% from 18 to 24, 33.8% from 25 to 44, 24.3% from 45 to 64, and 15.7% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females, there were 97.0 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 94.9 males.

The median income for a household in the township was $65,636, and the median income for a family was $78,690. Males had a median income of $51,247 versus $38,166 for females. The per capita income for the township was $34,961. About 1.3% of families and 2.9% of the population were below the poverty line, including 1.6% of those under age 18 and 3.1% of those age 65 or over.


Top employers

According to Upper Merion Township's 2010 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report, the top employers in the township are:

# Employer # of Employees Community
1 Lockheed Martin 3,568 King of Prussia
2 GlaxoSmithKline 2,732 King of Prussia
3 eBay Enterprise 991 King of Prussia
4 Pershing 853 King of Prussia
5 Upper Merion Area School District 691 King of Prussia
6 United States Liability Insurance Group 655 Wayne
7 Yellowbook 648 King of Prussia
8 Shellville Services 530 King of Prussia
9 Nordstrom 486 King of Prussia
10 Broadview Networks 469 King of Prussia


Public school students in Upper Merion Township attend schools in the Upper Merion Area School District.

  • Upper Merion Area High School (grades 9-12)
  • Upper Merion Area Middle School (grades 5-8)
  • Bridgeport Elementary School (grades K-4)
  • Caley Road Elementary School (grades K-4)
  • Candlebrook Elementary School (grades K-4)
  • Gulph Elementary School (grades K-4)
  • Roberts Elementary School (grades K-4)

Upper Merion Township also has a Private school, Mother Teresa Regional Catholic School. It formed in 2012 by the merger of Mother of Divine Providence in King of Prussia and St. Teresa of Avila in Norristown.

Armenian Sisters Academy, an Armenian school, is in Upper Merion Township, with a Radnor postal address.

The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Philadelphia previously maintained Holy Trinity Elementary School, which had a lower school in Swedesburg and an upper school in Bridgeport. It served as the parish school for Our Lady of Mount Carmel, Saint Augustine, and Sacred Heart churches. The first two churches are in Bridgeport and previously had a joint St. Augustine-Our Lady of Mount Carmel School. Sacred Heart is a Polish church in Swedesburg. 102 children were scheduled to attend in September 2005. Instead it closed in June 2005.

Colleges and universities

The Penn State Great Valley campus was once located in the King of Prussia section of Upper Merion from 1963 to 1974 before relocating to Great Valley. In 1982, the college opened up a new facility called Penn State King of Prussia Center.

See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Municipio de Upper Merion para niños

kids search engine
Upper Merion Township, Pennsylvania Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.