Everyone has heard of the momentous history that occurred in Philadelphia and Pittsburgh — but what about the smaller towns in Pennsylvania? Plenty of huge things have happened here as well. Here are just some of them:
The modern oil industry began in Titusville in the late 1850s. Within a short time, the town's population ballooned from 250 residents to more than 10,000 people.
The 1948 Donors smog has gone down in history as one of the worst air-pollution disasters ever to occur in the U.S. Fluoride emissions from U.S. Steel's Donora Zinc works sickened 7,000 people in the town and killed 20.
In 1961, a local doctor noticed that the inhabitants of Roseto seemed to be having fewer heart attacks than people from the surrounding towns. After researchers looked into the possible cause, they discovered the Roseto Effect: close-knit social communities experience lower mortality rates.
Most people have heard of the disastrous Johnstown Flood that struck on May 31,1889. More than 2,000 people perished when a dam failed and unleashed a catastrophic amount of water onto the town.
5. Londonderry Township (near Middletown)
The worst nuclear accident in America's history occurred at the Three Mile Island Nuclear Generating Station in 1979. The accident strengthened anti-nuclear sentiment in the country, and is often cited as the cause of the decline of the nuclear program.
There are very few towns in the world that have a massive, underground mine fire that's been burning since 1962. As of 2010, only 10 residents remain living in the nearly deserted town.
Celestia was a community formed in 1844 by Peter Edward Armstrong, who believed that armageddon was imminent. The title of the land was under God's name for over ten years before the land was claimed by the government for unpaid property taxes.
8. Jefferson Township (near Avelia)
Outside of Avelia is the Meadowcroft Rockshelter, which holds an amazing artifact: the oldest evidence of human civilization in the Americas. The artifacts that archeologists discovered here are at least 16,000 years old.
9. Jim Thorpe
Mauch Chunk Switchback Gravity Railroad became the country's first roller coaster, when thrill seekers began paying 50 cents to ride. It was originally used to deliver coal to the community now known as Jim Thorpe.
These are only some of the eventful things that have happened in the history of Pennsylvania. What else would you add to this list?