BOROUGH HISTORY

ABOUT CONSHOHOCKEN

Conshohocken (/ˌkɒnʃəˈhɒkən/ kon-shə-HOK-ənLenape: Kanshihàkink) is a borough on the Schuylkill River in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, in suburban Philadelphia. The name "Conshohocken" comes from the Unami language, from either Kanshi'hak'ing, meaning "Elegant-ground- place",or, more likely, Chottschinschu'hak'ing, which means "Big-trough-ground-place" or "Large-bowl-ground-place", referring to the big bend in the Tulpe'hanna (Turtle River, or modern Schuylkill River). It has also sometimes been rumored to have been translated from the Lenape Native American word for “pleasant valley." In the regional slang, it is sometimes referred to by the colloquial nickname Conshy (/ˈkɒnʃi/ KON-shee).

 

Conshohocken is located on the east bank of the Schuylkill River, thirteen miles northwest of Philadelphia. The place was first settled about 1820, and was for several years known as Matson's Ford; in 1830 it was laid out as a town and received its present name. It was incorporated in 1850. According to the United States Census Bureau, the borough has a total area of 1.0 square mile (2.6 km2), of which, 1.0 square mile (2.6 km2) of it is land and 0.04 square miles (0.10 km2) of it (2.97%) is water.

 

Conshohocken’s proximity to major transportation links, natural resources, and markets created a favorable environment for the rise of a virtually self-contained industrial, commercial, residential, civic and religious community. Perhaps best known for its great industrial firms, such as the Alan Wood Iron and Steel Company, whose roots date back to the early 1800s, and "Lee of Conshohocken," the automobile tire company founded in the early 1900s, Conshohocken played a major role in the industrial development of southeastern Pennsylvania. The growth of the town's industries brought together wealthy Quaker mill and landowners with immigrant laborers from Ireland, Poland, Italy, and other European countries to give the borough its distinctive character. As the town's industries expanded and moved outside the borough limits in the early twentieth century, Conshohocken evolved from an industrial leader into a primarily residential community.

A rather sharp bend in the river at Conshohocken gives the Schuylkill Expressway, which hugs the far bank, a curve that is well known to regional radio listeners as the Conshohocken curve. Railroad tracks line both river banks, reflecting the valley's heavy industrial past as well as its continuing rail activity including Norfolk Southern and SEPTA. A rail trail portion of the Schuylkill River Trail also passes through.

 

The sister community of West Conshohocken, located on the opposite side of the Schuylkill River, was incorporated on October 6, 1874.

 

Above Information obtained from Wikipedia and the Philadelphia Area Archives Research Portal