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Harrisburg Bail Bonds • Dauphin County Bail Bonds
Gibson Bail Bonds
Gibson Bail Bonds
Professional Bail Bondsman
3524 N. 4th St.
Harrisburg, PA 17110
The History of Dauphin County and the State of Pennsylvania
The history of Dauphin County is also that of Pennsylvania itself. It reaches back not just hundreds of years, but to the Stone Age as well. While we at Gibson Bail Bonds aren’t historians, we’ve spent a lot of time here and we’ve picked up some lessons about our community along the way.
Early Settlements Made in Dauphin County
Early indigenous tribes were living here for thousands of years. It wouldn’t be until the 1600s that the European settlers would find it. Then, John Smith, the same from Pocahontas fame, first met the Susquehannock. From there, French traders brought commerce, attracting more settlers.
By the 1700s, permanent communities began to form, just as they did in the rest of the nation. Unfortunately, with expansion came violence against those already living here. Pressure was placed on defending these settlements from tribes, despite vigilante groups leading the attacks. It wouldn’t be until the state capital moved here that legislation would shape society.
Establishing the State Capitol
As more residents stayed, the Pennsylvania Canal became the early highway system. Following the completion of the Capitol building, soon came railroads and ironworking companies. By the Civil War, Harrisburg became officially incorporated, seeing newspapers and horsecar trolleys emerge. The late 1800s brought with it steel plants, Edison’s new lightbulbs, and telephone service.
Streets started being paved, and horsecars gave way to electric trolleys instead. The original Market Square, built in the 1700s, was demolished for newer buildings. Although the Capitol building would burn down, it was quickly rebuilt. With rapid expansion came growing pains and the need to introduce beautification efforts.
The Civil War and Dauphin County
The region found itself in a precarious position as the Confederates gained confidence. As the rebel forces pushed past Maryland, they threatened Pennsylvania next. Unfortunately, the same railroad system that became its pride also acted as a vulnerability. Having tracks, cars, and depots, and active supply lines, too, created an attractive target.
The many forts in the area provided as much protection as they could against incursions. Some, however, would prove inconvenient as well as vulnerable. By the late 1800s, the Confederacy suffered a significant defeat at Gettysburg. Thankfully, Lee was unable to launch much of a coordinated strike and instead retreated.
Turn of the 20th Century
Other cities relying on manufacturing saw similar problems as those in Dauphin County. As a result, the City Beautiful movement sought to introduce industries other than smelting. The Pennsylvania Canal closed and shortly after, boating was replaced with the new automobile. Milton Hershey established his chocolate empire, creating jobs and a booming housing market.
Many early buildings and landmarks were torn down to create new ones. Transportation continued to expand, with the introduction of buses. While the Great Depression interrupted growth, WWII provided plenty of manufacturing work. The area would continue to see growth and expansion well into the modern era.
Employers Return to Dauphin County
After WWII, much of the country saw sustained success, including Dauphin County. Shortly after, influential names in business would find themselves drawn here, as Hershey had been. Electric trolleys and buses quickly found themselves obsolete, with increased car ownership. Penn National Insurance established its headquarters here, soon followed by others.
By the 1950s, over 90,000 residents had moved into the community permanently. New bridges, roads, and even counties were required to accommodate everyone. As old industries closed, Penn State took over the decommissioned Air Force base. The bus lines would transfer to the city, while older areas became razed.
Dauphin County Today and Tomorrow
Even more counties became necessary, some splitting and others forming metropolitan areas. That trend continued off and on from the 1980s to today. Now, you can find many choices for college and university courses. While manufacturing isn’t as prominent, you still see Hershey plants at work.
More arts and entertainment options have opened as well, mirroring New York’s need for Broadway. You can also find an impressive range of healthcare facilities and occupations. You can see a wide range of industries, from agriculture and food to manufacturing centers. Although much changed throughout its history, Dauphin County stays the same in other regards.
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