Bellefonte Facts

Quick facts on Bellefonte
Courtesy of Leadership Centre County Class of 2006 (provided by Susan Hoover)

  • Bellefonte's Big Spring was first seen by white men on July 1769
  • Émigrés to Centre County in 1802-1823 were almost entirely from Ireland with only four from other countries: one each from Novia Scotia, Germany, Poland and Scotland
  • Centre County's quota for soldiers during the Civil War was 1593. 374 of that total were from Bellefonte and the County as a whole exceeded its quota by 352
  • President Lincoln's great aunt by marriage, Mrs. Lucy Potter, lived in Bellefonte on North Allegheny Street, now the residence of the Centre County Library & Historical Museum
  • Bellefonte was the second town or city in the United States to have the streets lighted with electricity. The first was New York City.
  • Penn State's #1 football status isn't anything new: the Bellefonte Academy played Texas and Oklahoma schools in the 1926 football season to claim the National Prep School Championship
  • In 1815, a Bellefonte doctor told his patients if they spoke German they should bring an interpreter
  • Delaware Indian tribe Chief Bald Eagle was murdered in 1773 and at one time lived in Milesburg, in a spot called Bald Eagle's Nest
  • Centre County's earliest Post Offices: Aaronsburg (1797), Bellefonte (1798), Centre Furnace (1799), Milesburg (1799), Pine Grove Mills (1809), Potters Mills (1811), Stormstown (1811), Millheim (1824), Rebersburg (1828) and Spring Mills (1828)
  • Bellefonte's African American population in the 1860s was 11% - only Philadelphia or Pittsburgh had higher percentages
  • In 1896, the votes for naming State College were as follows: State College, 28; University Heights, 24; State Centre, 1; University Place, 0; Barrensville, 0; and Irvinville, 0
  • Dr. Evan Pugh, former president of Penn State, said State College was equally inaccessible from all points
  • Aaronsburg was laid out as the first planned town in Centre County in 1789
  • Examples of Americanized last names in Centre County/Bellefonte: Stober to Stover; Albrecht to Albright; Yatntzanbach to Johnsonbaugh; Schmidt to Smith; Deckard to Decker; Hauser to House
  • Philipsburg Episcopal Church was the nation's first church with electricity in the early 1800s



Contact Us

We are quartered in the historic Bellefonte Train Station next to beautiful Talleyrand Park. Our location is also the local visitor's center and the home of the Bellefonte Historical Railroad Society. 

320 West High St.
Train Station
Bellefonte, PA 16823