Goldsboro, Pennsylvania

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Goldsboro, Pennsylvania
Goldsboro in 1979 with Three Mile Island in the background
Goldsboro in 1979 with Three Mile Island in the background
Location in York County and the U.S. state of Pennsylvania.
Location in York County and the U.S. state of Pennsylvania.
Goldsboro is located in Pennsylvania
Location of Goldsboro in Pennsylvania
Goldsboro is located in the United States
Goldsboro (the United States)
Coordinates: 40°09′08″N 76°45′02″W / 40.15222°N 76.75056°W / 40.15222; -76.75056Coordinates: 40°09′08″N 76°45′02″W / 40.15222°N 76.75056°W / 40.15222; -76.75056[1]
CountryUnited States
 • TypeBorough Council
 • MayorDouglas G. Smith[2]
 • Total0.45 sq mi (1.18 km2)
 • Land0.45 sq mi (1.17 km2)
 • Water0.00 sq mi (0.01 km2)
344 ft (105 m)
 • Total930 Decrease
 • Estimate 
 • Density2,086.47/sq mi (805.93/km2)
Time zoneUTC-5 (Eastern (EST))
 • Summer (DST)UTC-4 (EDT)
ZIP code
Area code(s)717, 223
FIPS code42-30016

Goldsboro (formerly Goldsborough) is a borough in York County, Pennsylvania, United States. The population was 930 at the 2020 census.[4]

For historical reasons, the post office in Goldsboro is named "Etters" even though there is no incorporated place known by that name, and the United States Postal Service (USPS) states[5] that the name "Etters" is preferred over "Goldsboro" for addressing mail to ZIP code 17319. (see Source of the name "Etters")


In 1738 Nathan Hussey, a Quaker, from New Castle County, Delaware, obtained a grant for land on which the Village of Goldsboro now stands. In 1743 a road from Walnut Bottom, now in Cumberland County, to Hussey's ferry was built. The turnpike was completed in 1816 from York to Harrisburg. Along the turnpike, near the site of Hussey's Ferry (now Middletown Ferry) Henry Etter established Etter's Tavern, which included Etter's Post Office by 1838. Goldsboro was founded in 1850 upon completion of a railroad from York Haven to Harrisburg. Prior to completion of the railroad the 20 or so houses that made up Goldsboro were affectionately referred to as Martinsville, for Martin P. Burger who owned a store near the village. When the railway was completed in 1850, the village was named Goldsborough in honor of J.M. Goldsborough, the civil engineer of the railway. Dr. Alexander Small in 1849 surveyed Goldsborough and officially advertised lots for sale in the village of Goldsborough as early as November 19, 1850. The Borough of Goldsborough was incorporated in 1864.[6]

A historical association was founded in 1976. The Goldsboro Historic District was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1984.[7]

The American Lightweight Championship[edit]

On January 15, 1867, a prize fight took place in a field just north of Goldsboro between Sam Collyer and Johnny McGlade for the American Lightweight championship of boxing, and a purse of $2000.[8] It was a bare-knuckle fight, which was illegal at the time, so they planned the match for the same day as the inauguration of the Governor of Pennsylvania in Harrisburg, the Civil War General John W. Geary, thinking that more attention would be on that event. The York County sheriff arrived after securing a posse with the Zeigle Guards, a military company already on their way to attend the inauguration. However due to a miscommunication, the guards did not get off the train in Goldsboro, so the sheriff was left alone to try and make any arrests, which he was unable to.[9]

The fight lasted 47 rounds in 55 minutes.[8] Collyer was the winner and kept the American Lightweight Title. It was estimated that between 1000 and 2000 spectators were in attendance, including members of the PA state legislature, gamblers and underworld figures Kit Burns and Harry Hill, plus other boxers and former title holders of the day Young Barney Aaron, Dan Kerrigan, Johnny Moneghan and Joe Coburn. It was estimated over $200,000 in bets were won as a result of the fight.[10]

Source of the name "Etters"[edit]

The name "Etters", used by the USPS to refer to the post office in Goldsboro, comes from the establishment in 1838 of a post office inside a tavern owned by Henry Etter, a former Revolutionary War soldier, about a mile north of the current location of Goldsboro. The post office was moved to Goldsboro in 1850, at which time it retained the name "Etters" to avoid confusion with the already established post office in Gouldsboro, Wayne County, PA.[6][11][12] The 17319 ZIP code also covers other parts of York County well beyond the borough of Goldsboro, including parts of Fairview Township, Valley Green, Newberry Township, Lewisberry Borough, and Yocumtown Village.[13]


Goldsboro is located along the Susquehanna River and has a view of the Three Mile Island Nuclear Generating Station, the site of the largest nuclear accident in the United States.


Historical population
Census Pop.
2021 (est.)928[4]−0.2%

As of the census[15] of 2000, there were 939 people, 333 households, and 260 families residing in the borough. The population density was 2,306.3 people per square mile (884.3/km2). There were 365 housing units at an average density of 896.5 per square mile (343.7/km2). The racial makeup of the borough was 98.51% White, 0.21% Native American, 0.53% Asian, 0.11% Pacific Islander, and 0.64% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.64% of the population.

Of the 333 households, 46.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 67.6% were married couples living together, 7.8% had a female householder with no husband present, and 21.9% were non-families. 17.7% of all households were made up of individuals, and 3.9% 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 3.24.

In the borough the population was spread out, with 32.2% under the age of 18, 5.4% from 18 to 24, 40.4% from 25 to 44, 15.9% from 45 to 64, and 6.2% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 33 years. For every 100 females, there were 103.7 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 100.9 males.

The median income for a household in the borough was $57,054, and the median income for a family was $60,455. Males had a median income of $40,250 versus $31,146 for females. The per capita income for the borough was $19,164. About 1.7% of families and 2.3% of the population were below the poverty line, including 3.0% of those under age 18 and none of those age 65 or over.


The Goldsboro community is served by the West Shore School District.

Notable residents[edit]

Image Gallery[edit]


  1. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23.
  2. ^ Election results for York County municipalities: Live updates,
  3. ^ "2019 U.S. Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 28, 2020.
  4. ^ a b c d Bureau, US Census. "City and Town Population Totals: 2020-2021". US Census Bureau. Retrieved 9 July 2022.
  5. ^ "USPS ZIP Code Lookup (Cities by ZIP Code): 17319". Retrieved 20 March 2017.
  6. ^ a b Gibson, John (1886). "History of York County, Pennsylvania: GOLDSBORO". USGenWeb Archives. Chicago: F. A. Battey Publishing Co. pp. 627–630. Retrieved 5 August 2016. ... the postoffice was removed to Goldsboro, but still retains the name Etter’s Postoffice ...
  7. ^ "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. July 9, 2010.
  8. ^ a b "The Light Weight Championship". New York Clipper - 26 Jan 1867.
  9. ^ "Correction". The True Democrat - 29 Jan 1867.
  10. ^ Gibson, John (1886). "History of York County, Pennsylvania". Chicago: F. A. Battey Publishing Co. pp. 627–630.
  11. ^ Burger, TW (27 October 2002). "Where the heck is Etters? The answer is ..." Patriot-News, The (Harrisburg, PA). p. A01. ISSN 1041-4029. Retrieved 8 August 2016.
  12. ^ Larsen, Kari (28 August 2015). "Where is Etters? Red Land gives sports fans a look at central Pa.'s eccentric geography". PennLive. PA Media Group. Retrieved 10 August 2016. ... In early days, post offices were privately owned. The first post office in the Goldsboro area was owned by Henry Etter. This was about 1838 ...
  13. ^ "ZIP Code 17319 Map, Housing Stats, More for Etters, PA". Retrieved 2018-03-08.
  14. ^ "Census of Population and Housing". U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved 11 December 2013.
  15. ^ a b "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
  16. ^ "Incorporated Places and Minor Civil Divisions Datasets: Subcounty Resident Population Estimates: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2012". Population Estimates. U.S. Census Bureau. Archived from the original on 11 June 2013. Retrieved 11 December 2013.

External links[edit]