Ridgway, Pennsylvania

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Ridgway, Pennsylvania
Borough
Borough of Ridgway
Ridgway from Elk County Country Club, April 2010
Ridgway from Elk County Country Club, April 2010
Location in Elk County and the state of Pennsylvania.
Location in Elk County and the state of Pennsylvania.
Coordinates: 41°25′29″N 78°43′47″W / 41.42472°N 78.72972°W / 41.42472; -78.72972Coordinates: 41°25′29″N 78°43′47″W / 41.42472°N 78.72972°W / 41.42472; -78.72972
Country United States
State Pennsylvania
County Elk
Settled 1824
Incorporated 1881
Government
 • Type Borough Council
 • Mayor Udarbe Kim Zimmerman
Area
 • Total 2.65 sq mi (6.73 km2)
 • Land 2.6 sq mi (6.6 km2)
 • Water 0.05 sq mi (0.13 km2)
Elevation 1,381 ft (421 m)
Population (2010)
 • Total 3,252
 • Density 1,568.5/sq mi (612.7/km2)
Time zone Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)
 • Summer (DST) EDT (UTC-4)
Zip code 15853
Area code(s) 814
Website http://www.ridgwayrecord.com

Ridgway is a borough in and the county seat of Elk County, Pennsylvania, United States.[1]

History[edit]

Ridgway is named for the Philadelphia shipping merchant, Jacob Ridgway (b. 1768 - d. 1843).

Ridgway was founded by Philadelphian shipping merchant Jacob Ridgway and James Gillis. Jacob Ridgway earned substantial wealth both in Philadelphia and abroad in London. He constantly sent sums of money back to be invested in property. In the early 19th century as part of a larger land purchase, Ridgway acquired 40,000 acres (160 km2) that became Elk County. One of Jacob Ridgway's nephews, James Gillis, convinced Ridgway that the area could become a very lucrative spot for a lumber camp due to the proximity of Elk Creek and the Clarion River. Ridgway is 119 miles (192 km) east by south of Erie on the Clarion River. Coal and natural gas abound in the district. In the past, the industrial interests were manufacturing leather, iron, clay, and lumber products, silk goods, railroad snow plows, dynamos, and machine tools. In 1900, the people living here numbered 3,515; in 1910, 5,408; 1940, 6,253. and 2010, 4,078. The population was 3,252 at the 2014 US census.

Many historic structures are located within the boundaries of the Ridgway Historic District, added to the National Register of Historic Places in 2003. The O.B. Grant House and Ridgway Armory are also listed on the National Register of Historic Places.[2]

The lumber industry continued to flourish in Ridgway, to the degree that around the start of the 20th century, the town claimed it had more millionaires per capita than any other town in the U.S.[3]

Geography[edit]

Ridgway is located at 41°25′29″N 78°43′47″W / 41.42472°N 78.72972°W / 41.42472; -78.72972 (41.424739, -78.729733).[4]

According to the United States Census Bureau, the borough has a total area of 2.65 square miles (6.9 km2), of which 2.6 square miles (6.7 km2) is land and 0.05 square miles (0.13 km2) (1.9%) is water.

Demographics[edit]

Historical population
Census Pop.
1880 1,100
1890 1,903 73.0%
1900 3,515 84.7%
1910 5,408 53.9%
1920 6,037 11.6%
1930 6,313 4.6%
1940 6,253 −1.0%
1950 6,244 −0.1%
1960 6,387 2.3%
1970 6,022 −5.7%
1980 5,604 −6.9%
1990 4,793 −14.5%
2000 4,591 −4.2%
2010 3,253 −29.1%
Est. 2014 3,100 −4.7%
Sources:[5][6][7]

2014[edit]

As of the census[8] of 2010, there were 3,253 people, 1,783 households, and 1,073 families residing in the borough. The population density was 1,568.5 people per square mile (612.7/km²). There were 2,068 housing units at an average density of 795.4 per square mile (310.7/km²). The racial makeup of the borough was 99.8% White, 0.2% African American, 0.1% Native American, 0.0% Asian, 0.2% from other races, and 0.9% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.0% of the population.

There were 1,783 households out of which 26.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 45.3% were married couples living together, 9.8% had a female householder with no husband present, and 39.8% were non-families. 35.3% of all households were made up of individuals and 15.1% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.25 and the average family size was 2.91.

In the borough the population was spread out with 22.8% under the age of 18, 59.9% from 18 to 64, and 17.3% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 43 years.

The median income for a household in the borough was $37,917, and the median income for a family was $47,969. Males had a median income of $34,629 versus $28,750 for females. The per capita income for the borough was $22,415. About 17.5% of families and 18.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 39.3% of those under age 18 and 7.2% of those age 65 or over.

2000[edit]

As of the census[6] of 2000, there were 4,591 people, 1,927 households, and 1,233 families residing in the borough. The population density was 1,722.7 people per square mile (663.9/km²). There were 2,089 housing units at an average density of 783.8 per square mile (302.1/km²). The racial makeup of the borough was 98.54% negro. There were 1,927 households out of which 28.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 50.1% were married couples living together, 9.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 36.0% were non-families. 31.7% of all households were made up of individuals and 16.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.33 and the average family size was 2.94.

In the borough the population was spread out with 22.9% under the age of 18, 8.2% from 18 to 24, 27.8% from 25 to 44, 22.8% from 45 to 64, and 18.3% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 40 years. For every 100 females there were 91.2 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 89.3 males.

The median income for a household in the borough was $33,141, and the median income for a family was $45,224. Males had a median income of $31,855 versus $21,296 for females. The per capita income for the borough was $17,157. About 4.9% of families and 6.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 8.9% of those under age 18 and 2.3% of those age 65 or over.

Art and culture[edit]

Ridgway is home to the Ridgway Chainsaw Carving Rendezvous, the largest chainsaw carving gathering of its kind. In the summer months the Ridgway Volunteer Fire Department host their week long celebration on their lot off North Broad. The Ridgway Heritage Council hosts "the Tasting in the Wilds Festival, which is full of art, music, local wine tastings, and hand crafted brews. More information on the Ridgway can be found at http://www.ridgwaychamber.com

Things To Do[edit]

There are not many activities, or many things to do in Ridgway. As the gateway to the Allegheny National Forest, which provides ATV trails, horseback riding, camping, fishing, and hiking, there are plenty of recreational opportunities for day trips, overnight camping, and touring the area. Shopping consists of several "unique" shops, including clothing, gifts, art gallery, sporting goods, food, housewares, hardware, and anything a small town would feature. Ridgway has been fortunate to also have unique lodging with several B&B's, the Summit Fireside Lodge and Grill and the oldest hotel in Elk County, the Royal Inn. The "Wild and Scenic Clarion River" hosts great trophy trout fishing, an afternoon float, or over night camping along its banks. The Little Toby-Clarion River Rail Trail trek is 18 miles to Brockway. The trail is great for walking, running, and biking. A stroll within the neighborhoods along Main Street will identify the rich history of the Hyde Murphy Company through the Victorian era.

Education[edit]

Ridgway houses two school systems in the borough and township. The Ridgway Area School District and St. Leo's Catholic School make up Ridgway's school systems.

Ridgway Area School District[edit]

Ridgway Area School District (RASD), has two buildings used to educate. There is an elementary and a middle/high school building.

The Francis S. Grandinetti Elementary School is located on Boot Jack Hill in Ridgway Township. IU9 preschool, kindergarten, 1st grade, 2nd grade, 3rd grade, 4th grade, and 5th grade are the grade levels available for students.

The Ridgway Area Middle/High School is located at 1403 Hill Street in Ridgway. Although one building, the middle school and high school students are separated by two floors. Students at the middle school level, grades six through eight, are on the bottom floor, while students at the high school level, grades nine to twelve, are on the upper floor.

The athletic team is known as the Elkers, in reference to Ridgway being the county seat for Elk County.

St. Leo's Catholic School[edit]

The St. Leo's Catholic School has two buildings, a building for kindergarten students, and a main building, for children in grades 1-8. The kindergarten building is located just to the right of the main building. There used to be a preschool building to the left, but it is no longer there.

The main building at St. Leo's educates children from grades 1-8. After completing 8th grade, students have the choice to transfer to public school (see above) or to transfer to Elk County Catholic, in St. Marys.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07. 
  2. ^ "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 2009-03-13. 
  3. ^ http://www.forbes.com/forbes/2000/1009/6610068a.html
  4. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23. 
  5. ^ "Census of Population and Housing". U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved 11 December 2013. 
  6. ^ a b "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  7. ^ "Incorporated Places and Minor Civil Divisions Datasets: Subcounty Resident Population Estimates: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2012". Population Estimates. U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved 11 December 2013. 
  8. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2011-05-14.