|This article needs additional citations for verification. (September 2009)|
|Elevation||509 ft (155.1 m)|
|Area||2.0 sq mi (5.2 km2)|
|- land||2.0 sq mi (5 km2)|
|- water||0.0 sq mi (0 km2), 0%|
|Density||2,787.5 / sq mi (1,076.3 / km2)|
|- summer (DST)||EDT (UTC-4)|
Paoli // is a census-designated place in Chester County near Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States. It is situated in portions of two townships: Tredyffrin and Willistown. As of the 2010 census, it had a total population of 5,575.
The town of Paoli grew around an inn kept in 1769 by Joshua Evans, whose father bought 500 acres (200 ha) from William Penn in 1719 near the current site of the Paoli Post Office. Evans named his inn after General Pasquale Paoli, a Corsican, after he had received the 45th and final toast at a Saint Patrick's Day celebration. The inn's location on the Philadelphia and Lancaster Turnpike, about 20 miles (one day's drive for a horse-drawn wagon) from Philadelphia, ensured its success.
On the evening of September 20, 1777, near Paoli, General Charles Grey and nearly 5,000 British soldiers launched a surprise attack on a small regiment of Patriot troops commanded by General Anthony Wayne in what becomes known as the Paoli Massacre. Not wanting to lose the element of surprise, Grey ordered his troops to empty their muskets and to use only bayonets or swords to attack the sleeping Americans under the cover of darkness.
With the help of a Loyalist spy who provided a secret password and led them to the camp, General Grey and the British launched the successful attack on the unsuspecting men of the Pennsylvania regiment, stabbing them to death as they slept. It was also alleged that the British soldiers took no prisoners during the attack, stabbing or setting fire to those who tried to surrender. Before it was over, nearly 200 Americans were killed or wounded. The Paoli Massacre became a rallying cry for the Americans against British atrocities for the rest of the Revolutionary War. The Battle of Paoli occurred in the town; the site of the battle is now part of nearby Malvern, Pennsylvania.
The construction of the Main Line of Public Works across Pennsylvania enhanced the village's stature, as the Philadelphia and Columbia Railroad passed through it. This became the Pennsylvania Railroad, which built suburban commuter lines out from Philadelphia in the late 19th century, spurring the growth of that city's suburbs. The largest and longest of these commuter lines, the "Main Line", terminated in Paoli.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the CDP has a total area of 2.0 square miles (5.2 km2), all of which is land area. Paoli borders other towns, such as Berwyn and Malvern. These three towns all belong to either the Tredyffrin/Easttown or the Great Valley school districts.
As of the census of 2000, there were 5,425 people, 2,361 households, and 1,437 families residing in the CDP. The population density was 2,710.2 people per square mile (1,047.3/km²). There were 2,468 housing units at an average density of 1,233.0/sq mi (476.5/km²). The racial makeup of the CDP was 90.93% White, 5.36% Black, 0.09% Native American, 2.64% Asian, 0.02% Pacific Islander, 0.39% from other races, and 0.57% from two or more races. 0.85% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.
There were 2,361 households, out of which 24.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 51.0% were married couples living together, 7.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 39.1% were non-families. 32.9% of all households were made up of individuals, and 15.2% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.24 and the average family size was 2.89.
In the CDP the population was spread out, with 20.2% under the age of 18, 4.7% from 18 to 24, 31.5% from 25 to 44, 25.0% from 45 to 64, and 18.7% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 41 years. For every 100 females there were 89.8 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 83.2 males.
The median income for a household in the CDP was $55,800, and the median income for a family was $69,519. Males had a median income of $46,536 versus $34,702 for females. The per capita income for the CDP was $30,570. 4.7% of the population and 3.6% of families were below the poverty line. 8.0% of those under the age of 18 and 4.6% of those 65 and older were living below the poverty line.
Notable people who were born or lived in Paoli include:
- Joe Butler (1866-1941), boxer
- Paul Drucker, Pennsylvania state legislator
- Wharton Esherick (1887-1970), sculptor
- Susan Henking, president of Shimer College
- Warren Kampf, Pennsylvania state legislator
- Kristin Luckenbill (born 1979), professional soccer goalkeeper
- Max Patkin (1920-1999), baseball player and clown
- Anthony Wayne (1745-1796), US Army officer
- Isaac Wayne (1772-1852), US representative
The Tredyffrin/Easttown School District serves the portions of Paoli in Tredyffrin Township. The section of Paoli in Willistown Township is served by Great Valley School District. The elementary schools, Charlestown, K.D. Markley, Sugartown, and General Wayne, all filter into Great Valley Middle School.
Paoli was on the Philadelphia and Lancaster Turnpike, which was later absorbed into the Lincoln Highway, and became U.S. 30 still later. In a nod to the old days, most locals still call the route "Lancaster Pike".
For generations, Paoli was the western terminus of Pennsylvania Railroad commuter trains coming from Philadelphia on the Main Line. The "Paoli Local" became iconic in the western suburbs. Amtrak stops at the Paoli station, but with the decline of long-distance train travel, the stops are now less frequent.
Commuters traveling by rail within Southeastern Pennsylvania use the Paoli station, although most local trains serving Paoli now terminate in Malvern, one stop to the west. SEPTA's Paoli/Thorndale Line (formerly R5) commuter rail runs between Thorndale and Philadelphia both ways every 30 minutes during the week. College students and city-working suburbanites take the Paoli/Thorndale Line to school and work. Station-to-station, a trip from Paoli to downtown Philadelphia on the Paoli/Thorndale Line takes approximately 45 minutes.  Local buses traverse Route 30 along the Main Line, and Paoli Pike is the main artery for buses heading to West Chester.
- "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.
- Perry Garfinkel (2013-08-25). "A College President, Drawn to Uncertainties". New York Times. Retrieved 2013-08-24.
- Home page. Tredyffrin Township Libraries. Retrieved on September 8, 2009.
- "Paoli CDP, Pennsylvania." U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved on September 8, 2009.
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