Place:Bedford, Pennsylvania, United States

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source: Getty Thesaurus of Geographic Names
source: Family History Library Catalog


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Bedford County is a county located in the U.S. state of Pennsylvania. As of the 2010 census, the population was 49,762. The county seat is Bedford.

Contents

History

the text in this section is copied from an article in Wikipedia

Robert MacRay opened the first trading post in Raystown (which is now Bedford) on the land that is now Bedford County in 1750. The settlers had a difficult time dealing with raids from Indians and the fighting between the French and the British.

In 1759, after the capture of Fort Duquesne in Allegheny County, a road was built between the fort (which was renamed to Fort Pitt) to the newly built Fort Bedford in Raystown. This road followed Indian trails and became "Forbes Road" which passed through Bedford and is now Route 30. When the Pennsylvania Turnpike was built, this interstate toll road became the main highway through Bedford County.

Bedford County was created on March 9, 1771 from part of Cumberland County and named in honor of the Fort Bedford.

The area quickly increased in population once safety became more established. The land with its lush farmland and woodland became an attractive site. It also formed an important center on the way to Pittsburgh and farther west of Pennsylvania. George Washington stayed in the county in response to the Whiskey Rebellion in 1794.

The Bedford Springs Hotel became an important site for the wealthy. Under President James Buchanan, the hotel became the summer White House. The U.S. Supreme Court met at the hotel once. It was the only time that the high court met outside of the Capital.

The 19th century featured a population boom in the county with the population doubling in size between 1870 and 1890. Railroads passing through the town connected the county with the mining industry. The story of the Lost Children of the Alleghenies originates from Blue Knob State Park in the county.

Timeline

Date Event Source
1771 County formed Source:Red Book: American State, County, and Town Sources
1771 Land records recorded Source:Red Book: American State, County, and Town Sources
1771 Probate records recorded Source:Red Book: American State, County, and Town Sources
1790 First census Source:Population of States and Counties of the United States: 1790-1990
1850 No significant boundary changes after this year Source:Population of States and Counties of the United States: 1790-1990

Population History

source: Source:Population of States and Counties of the United States: 1790-1990
Census Year Population
1790 13,124
1800 12,039
1810 15,746
1820 20,248
1830 24,502
1840 29,335
1850 23,052
1860 26,736
1870 29,635
1880 34,929
1890 38,644
1900 39,468
1910 38,879
1920 38,277
1930 37,309
1940 40,809
1950 40,775
1960 42,451
1970 42,353
1980 46,784
1990 47,919

Research Tips

External links

  • Outstanding guide to Bedford County family history and genealogy resources (FamilySearch Research Wiki). Birth, marriage, and death records, censuses, wills, deeds, county histories, cemeteries, churches, newspapers, libraries, and genealogical societies.
  • www.bedfordcounty.net


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