Fort Washington, Pennsylvania

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Coordinates: 40°08′19″N 75°11′29″W / 40.13861°N 75.19139°W / 40.13861; -75.19139
Fort Washington
Census-designated place
Country United States
State Pennsylvania
County Montgomery
Township Upper Dublin
Whitemarsh
Elevation 233 ft (71 m)
Coordinates 40°08′19″N 75°11′29″W / 40.13861°N 75.19139°W / 40.13861; -75.19139
Area 2.7 sq mi (7 km2)
 - land 2.7 sq mi (7 km2)
 - water 0.0 sq mi (0 km2), 0%
Population 5,446 (2010)
Density 2,017 / sq mi (778.8 / km2)
Timezone EST (UTC-5)
 - summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)
ZIP code 19034
Area code 215
Location of Fort Washington in Pennsylvania
Location of Pennsylvania in the United States

Fort Washington is a census-designated place and suburb of Philadelphia in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, United States. The population was 5,446 at the 2010 census.

History[edit]

Prior to the Revolutionary War[edit]

The Fort Washington area was settled by many German immigrants. One such person was Philip Engard who immigrated in 1728. Engard purchased 100 acres (40 ha) on what was to be named Susquehanna Road and Fort Washington Avenue. By the mid-18th century the area came to be known as Engardtown, and Fort Washington Avenue was originally called Engardtown Road. The house built by Philip Engard is listed as the "Engard Family Home - 1765" in the Upper Dublin Township Open Space & Environmental Resource Protection Plan - 2005, as part of the Upper Dublin Historical Properties #25. The local high school, Upper Dublin Senior High School, is on Loch Alsh Avenue.

American Revolutionary War[edit]

Emlen House
Main article: Battle of White Marsh

During the Philadelphia campaign of the American Revolutionary War, George Washington and the Continental Army were encamped here after their October 4, 1777 defeat at the Battle of Germantown, and immediately prior to their march to Valley Forge. From December 5–8, 1777, the Battle of White Marsh was fought here between British and American forces. Throughout the encampment, Washington was headquartered at the Emlen House, built by Quaker George Emlen in 1745. British commander General William Howe observed the American lines from the bell tower of St. Thomas' Episcopal Church (at Bethlehem Pike and Camp Hill Road), site of the British encampment on December 5. Today, Fort Washington State Park contains the area in which the primary American defenses were situated.

Great Train Wreck of 1856[edit]

On July 17, 1856, Fort Washington was the site of one of the worst train accidents in the United States when two North Pennsylvania Railroad trains collided with one another near the Sandy Run station (later renamed to Camp Hill, now the defunct Fellwick Station). The exact number of deaths is uncertain, but 59 were killed instantly and dozens more perished from their injuries. Many of the dead were children from St. Michael's Roman Catholic Church from the Kensington section of Philadelphia, who were traveling to Sheaff's Woods, a park in the Fort Washington area, for a Sunday school picnic.[1][2]

Incorporation into Upper Dublin Township[edit]

On January 1, 1946, the Township of Upper Dublin was created, and in doing so, encompassed Fort Washington along with nine other communities. Parts of Fort Washington were also incorporated into Whitemarsh Township.

Business and industry[edit]

Fort Washington Office Park[edit]

The primary center of business and industry in Upper Dublin Township is the Fort Washington Office Park, which occupies 536 acres (217 ha) and contains 6,000,000 square feet (560,000 m2) of building space. There are more than 65 buildings of various sizes up to 658,535 square feet (61,179.9 m2). The park contains the offices of over 100 different companies, including Honeywell, Aetna, AccuWeather, Eastern National, Genworth Financial, Feith Systems and a suburban campus of Temple University. The office park was also home to the corporate headquarters of CDNow, the pioneering online music retailer. It is also home to a branch of The Paul Green School of Rock Music. In recent years, the Fort Washington Office Park has experienced a vacancy rate higher than that of other commercial/industrial parks in the region, due in some part to problems with flooding.[3][4]

Former Fort Washington Expo Center[edit]

The Fort Washington Office Park was also home to the Fort Washington Expo Center. Opened in 1993, the Expo Center hosted some of the region's biggest consumer and trade shows, and at 290,000 square feet (27,000 m2), was the largest such suburban venue in the northeastern United States. The Expo Center closed in 2006 after the building was sold to Liberty Property Trust who renovated the center into Class A office space. The center, which can accommodate 2,800 employees, was leased to GMAC Mortgage who took over the space in 2007. [5]

Johnson & Johnson facility[edit]

On Camp Hill Road in Whitemarsh is the corporate headquarters of Johnson & Johnson division McNeil Consumer & Specialty Pharmaceuticals, marketers of over-the-counter and prescription pharmaceuticals including Tylenol (acetaminophen) and Motrin IB (ibuprofen) products. Their building is based on a 110-acre (45 ha) site and has a workforce of 2,600 employees. Johnson and Johnson closed this plant in April 2010 after a series of manufacturing problems led to embarrassing product recalls for faulty manufacturing practices.[6][7]

Schools[edit]

Residents living in the Upper Dublin portion of Fort Washington are served by the Upper Dublin School District, while those living in parts incorporated into Whitemarsh are served by Colonial School District.

Public[edit]

Private[edit]

Demographics[edit]

Historical population
Census Pop.
1990 3,699
2000 3,680 −0.5%
2010 5,446 48.0%

As of the 2010 census, the CDP was 86.2% White, 4.5% Black or African American, 0.1% Native American, 6.2% Asian, 0.5% were Some Other Race, and 1.3% were two or more races. 1.8% of the population were of Hispanic or Latino ancestry.[9]

As of the census[10] of 2000, there were 3,680 people, 1,161 households, and 1,013 families residing in the community. The population density was 1,349.9 people per square mile (520.5/km²). There were 1,173 housing units at an average density of 430.3/sq mi (165.9/km²). The racial makeup of the community was 91.30% White, 3.04% African American, 0.08% Native American, 5.03% Asian (0.46% Asian Indian, 2.20% Chinese, 1.93% Korean, 0.16% Vietnamese, 0.27% Other Asian), 0.11% from other races, and 0.43% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.71% of the population.(0.08% Mexican, 0.19% Puerto Rican, 0.11% Cuban, 0.33% Other Hispanic). 90.65% of the population is White, non-Hispanic.

There were 1,161 households out of which 45.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 81.7% were married couples living together, 4.2% had a female householder with no husband present, and 12.7% were non-families. 10.9% of all households were made up of individuals and 4.0% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.06 and the average family size was 3.32.

The population is spread out with 28.5% under the age of 18, 5.2% from 18 to 24, 22.1% from 25 to 44, 32.4% from 45 to 64, and 11.8% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 42 years. For every 100 females there were 100.0 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 91.6 males.

The median income for a household in the community was $103,469, and the median income for a family was $112,863. Males had a median income of $76,205 versus $37,321 for females. The per capita income for the community was $43,090. About 1.5% of families and 3.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 3.7% of those under age 18 and none of those age 65 or over.

Points of interest[edit]

Notable people[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Camp Hill Train Disaster (archive)
  2. ^ "The Great Train Wreck of 1856". Philadelphia, PA: St. Michael's Roman Catholic Church. Retrieved May 23, 2011. 
  3. ^ "The New Planner: Drowning Office Park Rescued by Students During High Tide". Archived from the original on 2006-07-14. Retrieved 2006-11-01. 
  4. ^ "Philadelphia Inquirer: Office park tests nature - again". Retrieved 2006-11-01. [dead link][dead link]
  5. ^ "Philadelphia Inquirer: Fort Washington Expo is sold". Retrieved 2006-11-01. 
  6. ^ J&J recalling more Tylenol from closed plant
  7. ^ Johnson & Johnson's Recall Rap Sheet Bloomberg Businessweek, March 31, 2011
  8. ^ Ranking of High Schools in Pennsylvania
  9. ^ Census 2010: Pennsylvania. Usatoday.Com. Retrieved on 2013-07-21.
  10. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  • "Images of America, Fort Washington and Upper Dublin", Historical Society of Fort Washington. Arcadia Publishing; 2004; p. 85
  • Upper Dublin Township Open Space & Environmental Resource Protection Plan - 2005