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Perkasie Historical Society local history collection


Held at: Perkasie Historical Society [Contact Us]513 W. Walnut St., Perkasie, Pennsylvania, 18944-1345

This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the Perkasie Historical Society. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in their reading room, and not digitally available through the web.

Overview and metadata sections

"Perkasie" comes from the Lenape word "Pokesing," meaning "where the hickory nuts were cracked." It is located in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, midway between Philadelphia and Allentown.

Reserved by William Penn for his family's use, the tract of land known as "Perkasie Manor" embraced most of current-day Hilltown and Rockhill Township. It was laid out and surveyed in 1708. When the Borough of Perkasie was incorporated in 1879, it had 68 residents and covered 1,640 acres.

Perkasie served as a stop along Reading Railroad's North Penn Division, also known as the Bethlehem Branch. It was the third-largest station along the North Penn Line and became a trade center. In 1891, 19 of the 22 trains that operated along the line stopped in Perkasie. The line was later acquired by the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transit Authority (SEPTA). SEPTA terminated passenger service along the line in the early 1980s.

On June 26, 1988, about 15 percent of the town, including many historic buildings, was burned down in what became known as The Great Perkasie Fire. This massive fire was started by two 12-year-old boys who were playing with a lighter near the coal bins behind the Shelley & Sons lumberyard.


Borough of Perkasie, Bucks County, PA. "A Short History of Perkasie, PA; excerpts from The History of Perkasie, as recorded by James I. Moyer." Accessed March 22, 2013.

This collection consists of various materials, including scrapbooks, deeds, maps, business and organizational records, personal papers, receipts and invoices, and other documents relating to people and organizations based in and around Perkasie, Bucks County, Pennsylvania.

Items of special interest among personal papers include: John Albright (Hilltown) account book, 1848-1902; Solliday Shoe Store accounting ledger, 1890-1906; and the Nase family papers, including a daguerreotype and early 19th-century school books.

Also included are: Ralph Banes (Quakertown, PA) scrapbooks of local history clippings (mostly photocopies), circa 1970s-1980s; Jane and Richard Frick school materials, documenting their time as students and their involvement with alumni activities (reunions), including diplomas, photos, and ephemera, 1930s-1950s; Walter C. Kehr collection of negatives and ephemera; Perkasie anniversary research notes (1929 and 1954) and scrapbooks of the Perkasie centennial (1979).

Business and organization records include the following: Business and Professional Women's Club items, circa 1950s; Community Service Group membership book and check stubs circa 1950s; Flying Hornets Club (model plane club) photograph albums, circa 1940s; Knights of the Golden Eagle, Aquila Castle No. 330 minute book and membership records, circa 1975-1990; Needlework Guild of America, Perkasie Branch minutes, 1915-1960, annual reports, scrapbook with photographs and member biographies; Pennridge Merry Makers (senior citizen orchestra) clippings, photographs, and ephemera scrapbooks, circa 1970s-1990s. There are also business records, receipts, and invoices relating to various organization including: Perkasie Clox-Lite Manufacturing Company, Inc., Perkasie Industries Company (a conglomerate), and Fogleman Scrap Metal Dealer.

Lastly, the collection includes binders with newspaper clippings, ephemera, pamphlets, and photographs (originals and copies) on various local history topics. Subjects include: churches, fire department, automotive, museum history, trains, Lehigh Valley Transit Company, Menlo Park, Lake Lenape, Menlo Park Carousel, Perkasie Park, J. Moyer files on the history of Perkasie, and historical society events.

Materials collected at various times by the Perkasie Historical Society.

Summary descriptive information on this collection was compiled in 2012-2014 as part of a project conducted by the Historical Society of Pennsylvania to make better known and more accessible the largely hidden collections of small, primarily volunteer run repositories in the Philadelphia area. The Hidden Collections Initiative for Pennsylvania Small Archival Repositories (HCI-PSAR) was funded by a grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

This is a preliminary finding aid. No physical processing, rehousing, reorganizing, or folder listing was accomplished during the HCI-PSAR project.

In some cases, more detailed inventories or finding aids may be available on-site at the repository where this collection is held; please contact Perkasie Historical Society directly for more information.

Perkasie Historical Society
Finding Aid Author
Finding aid prepared by Celia Caust-Ellenbogen and Faith Charlton through the Historical Society of Pennsylvania's Hidden Collections Initiative for Pennsylvania Small Archival Repositories
This preliminary finding aid was created as part of the Historical Society of Pennsylvania's Hidden Collections Initiative for Pennsylvania Small Archival Repositories. The HCI-PSAR project was made possible by a grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.
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Contact Perkasie Historical Society for information about accessing this collection.

Collection Inventory

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