Picture Rocks, Pennsylvania

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Picture Rocks, Pennsylvania
Heading north on US Route 220 into Picture Rocks
Heading north on US Route 220 into Picture Rocks
Location of Picture Rocks in Lycoming County, Pennsylvania.
Location of Picture Rocks in Lycoming County, Pennsylvania.
Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lycoming County
Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Lycoming County
Coordinates: 41°16′48″N 76°42′42″W / 41.28000°N 76.71167°W / 41.28000; -76.71167Coordinates: 41°16′48″N 76°42′42″W / 41.28000°N 76.71167°W / 41.28000; -76.71167
CountryUnited States
 • Total1.00 sq mi (2.59 km2)
 • Land0.97 sq mi (2.52 km2)
 • Water0.03 sq mi (0.07 km2)
Elevation646 ft (197 m)
 • Total678
 • Estimate 
 • Density673.51/sq mi (259.92/km2)
Time zoneUTC-5 (Eastern (EST))
 • Summer (DST)UTC-4 (EDT)
ZIP code
Area code(s)570
FIPS code42-60136[4]
GNIS feature ID1193116[2]

Picture Rocks is a borough in Lycoming County, Pennsylvania, United States. The population was 693 at the 2000 census. It is part of the Williamsport, Pennsylvania Metropolitan Statistical Area.

Picture Rocks is the birthplace of Warren Sprout, who won a gold medal at the Olympics.


Picture Rocks was incorporated as a borough on September 27, 1875 from Wolf Township, but its history began a century earlier. The earliest settlers, who arrived in 1773, observed Indian pictographs (no longer extant) in the Muncy Creek valley, and the borough occupies the site of a Munsee Indian village. Evidence of this is found in the arrowheads and other relics that have been found in the vicinity of the creek.

The borough hall in Picture Rocks

The first warrant for property in the Picture Rocks area was issued by the Province of Pennsylvania to Henry Rody on June 3, 1773. The land was used very little and passed through several hands until 1848 when it was sold to A. R. Sprout and Amos Burrows who went on to become the founding fathers of Picture Rocks. Sprout and Burrows worked to clear the land that was thought to be worthless of the rocks, logs and brush that covered it. They also rebuilt an abandoned sawmill and established a factory that manufactured sashes, doors, and window blinds. This factory, the first of its kind in the area, caused a stir among the local carpenters who believed that the ready made building materials would curtail their profitability. The original factory was later used by the Burrows Brothers Furniture Company before becoming the Handle and Excelsior Company. Another factory, located at the present intersection of U.S. Route 220 and Factory Street, manufactured ladders.

The town grew up around the factory and soon other manufacturers arrived to harness the water power provided by Muncy Creek. People interested in purchasing lots in Picture Rocks were required to sign an agreement stating that they would not open a saloon or engage in the trafficking of liquor. This law was made by the residents and founders of the town, a majority of them being Baptists.

The Baptists of Picture Rocks organized in 1840 and met for a while in a school house. A traveling preacher arrived in Picture Rocks one Saturday evening and found the school to be unfit for Sunday gatherings. After preaching on the following morning, he rallied the members of the congregation around the cause of building a proper house of worship. Under the guidance of their new pastor, the members of the Baptist Church built a log church building that was used until its replacement twenty-five years later by a larger facility.

At the time of the borough's creation, Center Street was considered the main street for travelers. The original homes built by the Burrows and Sprout families still exist along Center Street and are easy to identify based upon their square shape with low pitched roof often with a widow's peak or lookout.

Borough resident John Wesley Little achieved regional fame for his watercolor landscapes and images of rural farms and animals. His studio/home is located along Water Street. His original praintings are highly sought after at local auctions.

The borough boasts two churches, the Baptist Church on Elm Street and the Methodist Church on Laurel Street.

Located within the East Lycoming School District, Picture Rocks is home to George A. Ferrell Elementary School. This K-6 elementary school is recognized as a National Blue Ribbon School. The school was originally a fully inclusive school for students in first through twelfth grades with its own sports program. The school joined with others in neighboring Hughesville and nearby Lairdsville to form the East Lycoming School District.


Picture Rocks is located at 41°16′48″N 76°42′42″W / 41.28000°N 76.71167°W / 41.28000; -76.71167 (41.280066, -76.711731),[5] in southeastern Lycoming County. It is bordered by Wolf Township to the west, Shrewsbury Township to the north and Penn Township to the east and south.[6] As the crow flies, Lycoming County is about 130 miles (209 km) northwest of Philadelphia and 165 miles (266 km) east-northeast of Pittsburgh.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the borough has a total area of 0.9 square miles (2.4 km2), all of it land.


Historical population
Census Pop.
Est. 2016656[3]−3.2%

As of the census[4] of 2000, there were 693 people, 274 households, and 198 families residing in the borough. The population density was 740.3 people per square mile (284.6/km2). There were 288 housing units at an average density of 307.7 per square mile (118.3/km2). The racial makeup of the borough was 98.41% White, 0.29% Native American, 0.43% Asian, and 0.87% from two or more races.

There were 274 households, out of which 35.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 60.2% were married couples living together, 9.5% had a female householder with no husband present, and 27.4% were non-families. 24.1% of all households were made up of individuals, and 13.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.53 and the average family size was 2.99.

In the borough the population was spread out, with 25.4% under the age of 18, 6.3% from 18 to 24, 31.5% from 25 to 44, 23.7% from 45 to 64, and 13.1% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 37 years. For every 100 females there were 94.7 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 88.7 males.

The median income for a household in the borough was $36,375, and the median income for a family was $45,568. Males had a median income of $31,103 versus $21,667 for females. The per capita income for the borough was $15,402. About 8.5% of families and 11.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 16.7% of those under age 18 and 12.0% of those age 65 or over.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "2016 U.S. Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved Aug 14, 2017.
  2. ^ a b "US Board on Geographic Names". United States Geological Survey. 2007-10-25. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
  3. ^ a b "Population and Housing Unit Estimates". Retrieved June 9, 2017.
  4. ^ a b c "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
  5. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23.
  6. ^ "2007 General Highway Map Lycoming County Pennsylvania" (PDF) (Map). 1:65,000. Pennsylvania Department of Transportation, Bureau of Planning and Research, Geographic Information Division. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2011-07-05. Retrieved 2009-12-27.
  7. ^ "Census of Population and Housing". U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved 11 December 2013.
  8. ^ "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 17 June 2013. Retrieved 11 December 2013.

Meginness, John Franklin (1892). "Borough of Picture Rocks". History of Lycoming County, Pennsylvania: including its aboriginal history; the colonial and revolutionary periods; early settlement and subsequent growth; organization and civil administration; the legal and medical professions; internal improvement; past and present history of Williamsport; manufacturing and lumber interests; religious, educational, and social development; geology and agriculture; military record; sketches of boroughs, townships, and villages; portraits and biographies of pioneers and representative citizens, etc. etc (1st ed.). Chicago: Brown, Runk & Co. ISBN 0-7884-0428-8. Retrieved 2007-02-22. (Note: ISBN refers to Heritage Books July 1996 reprint. URL is to a scan of the 1892 version with some OCR typos).