Exploring Historical Markers

A digital tour of Crawford County historical markers that broadens the history reflected in the current markers and to provide a forum for previously marginalized voices or histories.

French Creek

The Riviere aux Boeufs of the French, renamed by George Washington in 1753. It had an important part in the French and Indian War and the settlement of northwestern Pennsylvania. 

Baldwin House

Two blocks from here is the home built 1841 by Justice Henry Baldwin. Appointed to United States Supreme Court in 1830. As a member of Congress in 1816 to 1822, he was an early protective tariff advocate.

Desegregation of Pennsylvania Schools

An event here in September 1880 led to the end of segregation by race in the state's public schools. At the South Ward schools, Elias Allen tried unsuccessfully to enroll his two children. He appealed to the Crawford County Court of Common Pleas, and…

Richard Henderson

Born a slave in Maryland in 1801, he escaped as a boy and about 1824 came to Meadville. A barber, he was long active in the Underground Railroad. His Arch Street house, since torn down, is estimated to have harbored some 500 runaway slaves prior to…

Unitarian Church

A fine example of Greek Revival architecture. It was erected in 1835-36 at a cost of $3500, mostly given by Shippen and Huidekoper families. Planned by the builder of Fort Sumter, General George W. Cullum.

Conneaut Reservoir

Raised some 10 feet by a 23-mile "feeder" from Meadville, this lake was the vital source of water for the highest part of the canal, 4 miles west. Lake water and traffic flowed north to Erie, south to the Ohio River.

Alliance College

Founded in 1912 by the Polish National Alliance and dedicated by U.S. President William Howard Taft, Alliance College was one of the nation's first nationality colleges. Its mission was to provide educational opportunities for everyone, but…

Rural Electrification

Here on August 5, 1936, the State's first rural electric pole was placed by the Northwestern Rural Electric Cooperative Association. Incorporated on April 30, 1936, this was Pennsylvania's first such cooperative. By 1941, thirteen more had been…

John Brown Tannery

John Brown of Ossawatomie and Harper's Ferry worked here as a tanner, 1825-35. The nearby house was then his home. His first wife and son are buried near.

Oil Creek

Along this stream the first white explorers found Indians skimming surface oil. From 1859 to 1865, the center of oil production and its refining was along the banks of Oil Creek.

John A. Mather

Photographer of oil industry from 1860, lived in this house. His thousands of views form an extraordinary record of an industry that began here. Born, Bury, England, in 1829; died Titusville, 1915.

John William Heisman (1869-1936)

Renowned college football coach and name-sake for the sport's highest amateur honor, the Heisman Memorial Trophy. His innovations included legalizing the forward pass, the center snap, the scoreboard, and game quarters. Heisman promoted player safety…