East Crawford Avenue
|Official name: City of Connellsville|
|Area||2.4 sq mi (6 km2)|
|- land||2.3 sq mi (6 km2)|
|- water||0.1 sq mi (0 km2)|
|Density||3,503.2 / sq mi (1,353 / km2)|
|- summer (DST)||EDT (UTC-5)|
Connellsville is a city in Fayette County, Pennsylvania, USA, 57 miles (92 km) southeast of Pittsburgh on the Youghiogheny River, a tributary of the Monongahela River. It is part of the Pittsburgh Metro Area. The population was 7,637 at the 2010 census.
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As of the census of 2000, there were 9,146 people, 3,963 households, and 2,377 families residing in the city. The population density was 4,053.5 people per square mile (1,562.5/km²). There were 4,434 housing units at an average density of 1,965.2 per square mile (757.5/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 94.54% White, 3.93% Black, 0.13% American Indian, 0.33% Asian, 0.17% from other races, and 0.90% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.54% of the population.
There were 3,963 households out of which 28.2% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 40.3% were married couples living together, 15.5% had a female householder with no husband present, and 40.0% were non-families. 35.9% of all households were made up of individuals and 19.0% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.28 and the average family size was 2.97.
In the city the population was spread out with 24.5% under the age of 18, 7.9% from 18 to 24, 27.6% from 25 to 44, 20.7% from 45 to 64, and 19.3% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females there were 86.9 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 80.7 males.
The median income for a household in the city was $21,070, and the median income for a family was $28,105. Males had a median income of $28,942 versus $23,016 for females. The per capita income for the city was $14,165. About 22.4% of families and 28.2% of the population were below the poverty line, including 45.5% of those under age 18 and 16.4% of those age 65 or over.
During the French and Indian War, a British army commanded by General Edward Braddock approached Fort Duquesne and crossed the Youghiogheny River at Stewart's Crossing, which is situated in the middle of what is now the City of Connellsville.
Connellsville was officially founded as a township in 1793 then as a borough on March 1, 1806 by Zachariah Connell, a militia captain during the American Revolution. In February 1909, balloting in New Haven and Connellsville resulted in these two boroughs joining and becoming the first city in Fayette County on May 12, 1911.
Due to the city’s location in the center of the Connellsville coalfield, coal mining, coke production, and other accompanying industries became the major sources of employment and revenue during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Connellsville became known at the "Coke Capital of the World" due to the amount and quality of coke produced in the city's many beehive ovens. During this time, Connellsville had more millionaires per capita than any other city in the United States.
Connellsville is served by the Connellsville Area School District.
The Daily Courier, a newspaper based in the city, has been in publication for over a century.
Parks and trails
Connellsville has the distinction of being served at one time by five railroads: the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad, the Pennsylvania Railroad, the Western Maryland Railroad, the Pittsburgh and Lake Erie Railroad, and the Norfolk and Western Railroad.
The Bailtimore and Ohio Railroad (now CSX Transportation) entered Connellsville on the left side of the Youghiogheny River. This main line originated in Cumberland, MD and followed the river to Pittsburgh and eventually Chicago, Il.
The Pennsylvania Railroad's Southwest branch from Greensburg entered Connellsville from Connellsville Township crossing Route 119 and across the North End crossing the Youghiogheny on a tressle in the middle of the town as this line terminated in Uniontown, PA. This line has been severed and the tressle demolished in the late 80's. It remains as a coal loading facility behind the location of the former Back Creek Lumber Co where the line was severed. This line is now operated by the Southwest Pennsylvania Railroad.
The Western Maryland Railroad's line crossed over the Alleghenies from Cumberland, MD and entered Connellsville on the right side of the Youghiogheny river and connected with two separate railroad companies. The first connection was with the Pittsburgh and Lake Erie Railroad's line from Pittsburgh which continued down the right side of the river to Pittsburgh. This was in direct competition with the B & O directly across the river. The second connection of the Western Maryland was to the Norfolk and Western railroad which crossed the river to the left side on the former Pittsburgh & West Virginia railroad bridge.
The Norfolk & Western branch was acquired by the Wheeling and Lake Erie Railroad which build a new connection on the left side of the river to CSX which severed the old line across the bridge. This historic bridge is now threatened with demolition. Several of these former railway lines have been abandoned and the right of way acquired for other uses. The former Western Maryland railroad, and Pittsburgh & Lake Erie lines are now the part of the Youghiogheny River Trail.
The main route through Connellsville is US 119. US 119 links Connellsville with nearby cities Uniontown and Greensburg, and provides access to many of the business on the outskirts of the city. PA 201 ends in Connellsville, and PA 711 serves as the main street through downtown before heading into the local mountains.
Notable natives and residents
- Bob Bailor, professional baseball player
- Harold Betters, jazz trombonist
- Scott Blasey, lead vocalist for the rock band the Clarks
- William A. Clark, Copper Baron
- Gene Hasson, professional baseball player
- Johnny Lujack, Heisman-winning quarterback for the University of Notre Dame
- Edwin S. Porter, movie director
- Ray Scott, professional broadcaster
- John Woodruff, 1936 Olympic gold medalist in the 800 metres
- Carnegie Free Library
- Colonial National Bank Building
- Connellsville Armory
- Connellsville train wreck
- Connellsville Union Passenger Depot
- Dr. J.C. McClenathan House and Office
- US Post Office-Connellsville
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Connellsville, Pennsylvania.|
- City of Connellsville official site
- Historic Connellsville, PA Guide
- Connellsville Area
- Fayette County Portal
- “Carnegie Libraries: The Future Made Bright”, a National Park Service Teaching with Historic Places (TwHP) lesson plan