2017 trip travel blog

Lycoming engine

Paddleboat Hiawatha

Susquehanna river

Boating on the river

Piles left from logging

Downtown murals

Murals

Peter Herdic lumberman

herdic mansion bult 1854

Rowley house Museum

Rowley house built 1888

millionaires row


The drive to Williamsport is hilly with grades, scenic. It's a neat town with a millionaires row, houses built in the mid 1800's during the lumber boom. At one time there were more millionaires here than anywhere in the world. We went to the local museum and it had a lycoming engine on display as well as some info. about the Lycoming Aircraft Engine company. We then took the paddle wheel boat Hiawatha on the Susquehanna river. They provided a good narrative about the canals and lumbering that settled this area. It was close to 90 degrees and many people were boating on the river. There are small islands in the river left over from logging, places to secure the logs before sending further downstream. There are murals in the historic area and an intersection is a baseball diamond with bases at each corner. This is the birthplace of little league baseball. We checked out the location of the lycoming plant, right in the middle of older neighborhoods.

There are many old buildings in the downtown area as due to the river this was a vibrant manufacturing town in the mid 1800's to the mid 1900's. There is a retail building called the Pajama Factory - it was the world's largest pajama factory in the 1930's and was used as the model for the 1950's Broadway musical The Pajama Game.

In the area of millionaires row is a very large Park Hotel, built in 1864. It could house 700 guests in the day, was used as a retirement home and is now private office space. Very impressive building. The college utilizes several of these mansions for student housing and this usage has most likely allowed so many of these buildings to remain in good condition. There were many ornate churches in this section also. Those millionaires competed to see who could build the best church - hoping to atone for any questionable behavior no doubt.

There is a trolley tour that includes a tour of a couple of the mansions, unfortunately we were one day late and missed out.

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