Gap is a census-designated place and town in Salisbury Township, Lancaster County, Pennsylvania with a zip code of 17527. The population was 1,931 at the 2010 census. It is the terminus for four Pennsylvania highways: 772, 741, 897, and the heavily-used 41, which goes toward Wilmington, DE.
Gap has a history which can be dated as far back as William Penn's first visits to the area. Isaac Taylor erected the first house in what would become the Gap in 1747. The area around Gap had a copper mine and what at the time was the only nickel mines in the United States. The town was named after The Gap in the Appalachian Mountains.
A stretch of railroad line was laid through areas of Sadsbury Township and Salisbury Township, which portions of each township share the Gap ZIP code (17527) and the town name of Gap.
Pequea Avenue is among the most heavily-traveled roads in Gap. The Gap Fire Co. is located along this street. Gap Fire Company. The fire company was originally located atop Pequea Avenue by their water refilling area. The original fire house was renovated into a home that is leased out. A new facility was built to house all of the rescue trucks. the fire house is also used to host many fundraisers and civic gatherings. Up the street another block is a very historic building which was used for the Pequea Feeds Company. The building is located directly next to the Gap Railroad station. About another block away is the previous home of community radio station WLRI 92.9 "WLRI 93FM". Until July 2008 WLRI Studios were used to broadcast local news, weather and traffic information.
Pennsylvania Route 41 connects central Gap to Newport, Delaware and begins a block east of Pequea Avenue at the intersection of US 30, also known as the Lincoln Highway. PA 41 is the highway that connects the north to the south. It is a very relied-on route for commercial transporters who do not want to travel out to Philadelphia's bridges to deliver goods to the Northern states. In 1997 a study was conducted which said that PA 41 is the 3rd most deadly highway in the United States. Following a PennDOT conducted survey, improvements have been planned starting in 2014.
Pennsylvania Route 772 Starts in Gap about 5 blocks west from the intersection of PA 41 and US 30 along Lincoln Highway Route 772 is popular with visitors to view local farms and farm lands. The road goes northwest to Mount Joy. PA 772 takes motorists to towns such as Intercourse; Leola; New Holland; and Ephrata.
Pennsylvania Route 897 starts in Gap one block east from PA 41 at the intersection of US 30. Many residents and merchants choose to avoid this route simply because of the Welsh mountain of which the highway was paved upon. Many tourists use the PA 897 corridor to travel north to Reading. PA 897 takes motorists to towns such as: Cambridge, Narvon and Myerstown.
The Gap Gang
In the mid 19th century there was a group of men known as "The Gap Gang". They would engage in raids and robberies of citizens traveling the Lancaster Philadelphia Turnpike. They were notoriously known for kidnapping free blacks, and escaped slaves and selling them back to slave traders in Maryland, Delaware, and Virginia. The Gap Gang were most noted for their involvement in the Christiana Riot.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the CDP has a total area of 2.8 square miles (7.3 km2), all of it land.
As of the census of 2000, there were 1,611 people, 572 households, and 459 families residing in the CDP. The population density was 576.5 people per square mile (222.9/km²). There were 597 housing units at an average density of 213.6/sq mi (82.6/km²). The racial makeup of the CDP was 97.89% White, 0.43% Black or African American, 0.06% Native American, 1.06% Asian, 0.12% Pacific Islander, 0.12% from other races, and 0.31% from two or more races. 0.81% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
There were 572 households out of which 38.8% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 68.7% were married couples living together, 7.2% had a female householder with no husband present, and 19.6% were non-families. 16.4% of all households were made up of individuals and 5.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.82 and the average family size was 3.14.
In the CDP the population was spread out with 29.4% under the age of 18, 7.1% from 18 to 24, 29.7% from 25 to 44, 23.7% from 45 to 64, and 10.1% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 36 years. For every 100 females there were 98.2 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 95.9 males.
The median income for a household in the CDP was $46,036, and the median income for a family was $51,181. Males had a median income of $38,958 versus $24,803 for females. The per capita income for the CDP was $18,052. About 4.4% of families and 4.3% of the population were below the poverty line, including none of those under age 18 and 19.5% of those age 65 or over.
The Gap Town Clock, built in 1892, is a Lancaster County Historic Preservation Trust Site located in Gap. According to the Gap Clock Tower Association, "The clock's face, long telling the time to passing multitudes, overlooks, at the gap, William Penns' entrance into Conestoga, now Lancaster County, in 1701."
Gap is served by the radio station WLRI 93FM, a Licensed Non-Commercial Educational outlet for Community based Public Media. The station is the region, county and state's only 24 Hour All News station with funding provided by local businesses.
- Harris, Alex (1872). A Biographical History of Lancaster County. Lancaster, PA: Elias Barr & Co.
- Roddy, Henry Justin (1917). Physical and industrial geography of Lancaster county, Pennsylvania. Lancaster, PA: The New Era Printing Company.
- "Tried For High Treason - A celebrated incident of the Fugitive Slave Law. Citizens of Lancaster County, Penn., will celebrate an event which has become historical". The New York Times (New York: NYTC). August 15, 1888. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 8 December 2013.
- "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23.
- "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
- Gap Clock Tower Association, Gap Town Clock onsite descriptions.