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Lancaster (City), Pennsylvania

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  • Martin James Rose (1923 - 1974)
  • Rev. Jere R. Martin (1935 - 2015)
    Reverend Jere R. Martin, 80, died at Hospice & Community Care, Mount Joy, PA, on September 15, 2015. Born June 17, 1935 in Lancaster, PA. Jere retired from the United Methodist Church, formerly Evangel...
  • Betty A. Witwer (1932 - 2019)
    Betty A. Witwer (Ochs), February 20, 1932 – January 24, 2019 Betty A. Witwer, 86, of Lancaster, formerly of Ephrata, died Thursday, January 24, 2019. Born in Reinholds, she was a daughter of Ralph H. ...
  • Wesley Scott Frey, Sr. (1960 - 2021)
    Newspaper report on the deaths of father & son Wesley Scott Frey, Sr., 61, of Mount Joy died on September 29, 2021. He was the devoted husband of Jodi Hilyard Frey for 32 years of marriage. He is s...
  • Wendell L. Frey (1960 - 1977)
    A county youth died Friday morning from injuries received when the truck he was driving struck a guardrail and flipped over several times about 3:45 a.m. along Route 441 in Conoy Township.... Born in L...

Please add profiles of those who were born, lived or died in the city of Lancaster, Pennsylvania.

Official Website

Lancaster is the county seat of Lancaster County.


Originally called Hickory Town, the city was renamed after the English city of Lancaster by native John Wright. Its symbol, the red rose, is from the House of Lancaster. Lancaster was part of the 1681 Penn's Woods Charter of William Penn, and was laid out by James Hamilton in 1734. It was incorporated as a borough in 1742 and incorporated as a city in 1818.

During the American Revolution, Lancaster was the capital of the United States for one day, on September 27, 1777, after the Continental Congress fled Philadelphia, which had been captured by the British. The revolutionary government then moved still farther away to York, Pennsylvania.

Lancaster was capital of Pennsylvania from 1799 to 1812, after which the capital was moved to Harrisburg.

The first long-distance paved road in the United States was the former Philadelphia and Lancaster Turnpike, which connected the cities of Lancaster and Philadelphia. Opened in 1795, the turnpike was paved with stone the whole way, and overlaid with gravel. The sixty-two-mile turnpike cost more than $450,000, a staggering sum for the time.

The city of Lancaster was home to several important figures in American history. Wheatland, the estate of James Buchanan, the fifteenth President of the United States, is one of Lancaster's most popular attractions. Thaddeus Stevens, considered among the most powerful members of the United States House of Representatives, lived in Lancaster as an attorney. Stevens gained notoriety as a Radical Republican and for his abolitionism. The Fulton Opera House in the city was named for Lancaster native Robert Fulton, a renaissance man who created the first fully functional steamboat. All of these individuals have had local schools named after them.

After the American Revolution, the city of Lancaster became an iron-foundry center. Two of the most common products needed by pioneers to settle the Frontier were manufactured in Lancaster: the Conestoga wagon and the Pennsylvania long rifle. The Conestoga wagon was named after the Conestoga River, which runs through the city. The innovative gunsmith William Henry lived in Lancaster and was a U.S. congressman and leader during and after the American Revolution.

In 1803, Meriwether Lewis visited Lancaster to be educated in survey methods by the well-known surveyor Andrew Ellicott. During his visit, Lewis learned to plot latitude and longitude as part of his overall training needed to lead the Lewis and Clark Expedition.

In 1879, Franklin Winfield Woolworth opened his first successful "five and dime" store in the city of Lancaster, the F. W. Woolworth Company.

On October 13, 2011, Lancaster's City Council officially recognized September 27 as Capital Day, a holiday recognizing Lancaster's one day as capital of the United States in 1777.



House of Lancaster


Fulton Opera House

Conestoga Wagon

The Pennsylvania Rifle