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A History of Nether Providence Township, PA

nether providence township personal injury lawyer near thomas leiper historic house

The personal injury lawyers in Nether Providence Township, PA, present this article to offer detailed information about the area.

Nether Providence Township is a first-class township in Pennsylvania. The entire township spans 4.72 square miles and hosts an approximate population of 13,706 with a population density of 2,923.62 per square mile. The neighborhood belongs to ZIP codes 19037, 19063, 19065, 19081, and 19086.


Before any settlers arrived at the area of Nether Providence Township, the grounds were occupied by Native Americans of the Lenape Tribe, an indigenous people of the Northeastern Woodlands.

In June 1682, just two months prior to when William Penn, founder of Pennsylvania, found Chester, John Sharpless came to the area.

Once William Penn arrived, the area was composed of various smaller settlements, which eventually became known as  Providence Township. Penn offered Sharpless a thousand-acre tract in Ridley Creek, where Sharpless later settled.

Residents of Providence Township were very active in their community and paved the way to make Nether Providence what is it is today. In 1693, residents of the Providence Township petitioned the Court of Chester County to establish the main road from Providence to Chester. The petition was approved and is now known as Route 252.

The construction of the road brought more residents to the area, and development increased.

Soon following the construction of Route 252, 14 major mill complexes were built, and, in 1763, the first cotton mill along Crym Creek was founded by Thomas Allen. The mills played an essential role in the development of the area and created jobs for the residents of North Providence Township. At the time, millhands lived in self-contained villages and grew up around the mills.

Following the Civil War, Nether Providence Township became a popular area for vacation resorts and summer homes.

The area continued to advance and had its first railway, named the Leiper Railroad, by 1810. The railroad was mainly used to haul cut stone until 1828, and then eventually, Nether Providence Township received its first steam locomotive train in 1854.

Another pivotal moment of development for the community was the first independent trolley made in 1892. Trolleys quickly became significant in the area and contributed greatly to the town's development. The last trolley to ever run through Nether Providence Township was in 1938.

Historic Sites

Not only does the area of Nether Providence Township hold such a rich history, but it also possesses several historical sites. Some of which include,

Wolley Stile

  • Also known as the Joseph Sharpless House, the historic home that consists of two pre-1700 buildings and a Great Hall dated back to 1700. The home was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1980.

Thomas Leiper Estate

  • Also known as Avondale, is a historic estate spanning 6 acres of land built by Thomas Leiper, a Scottish American merchant and local politician, in 1785. The estate includes a yellow stuccoed mansion house, communal outhouse, "Fireproof" vault, carriage house, barn, smokehouse, warehouse, tenant's house, and quarry.

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David Petrone
Date Published: June 7, 2021
David Petrone is a personal injury attorney at Justice Guardians.
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