Portal:Pennsylvania
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Portal:Pennsylvania

The Pennsylvania Portal

Pennsylvania ( PEN-s?l-VAY-nee-?) (Pennsylvania German: Pennsilfaani), officially the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, is a state in the Mid-Atlantic, Appalachian, and Great Lakes regions of the Northeastern United States. The Commonwealth is bordered by Delaware to the southeast, Maryland to the south, West Virginia to the southwest, Ohio to the west, Lake Erie and the Canadian province of Ontario to the northwest, New York to the north, and New Jersey to the east, while the Appalachian Mountains run through its middle.

Pennsylvania is the 33rd-largest state by area, and the 5th-most populous state according to the most recent official U.S. Census count in 2010. It is the 9th-most densely populated of the 50 states. Pennsylvania's two most populous cities are Philadelphia (1,580,863), and Pittsburgh (302,407). The state capital and its 13th-largest city is Harrisburg. Pennsylvania has 140 miles (225 km) of waterfront along Lake Erie and the Delaware River.

The state is one of the 13 original founding states of the United States; it came into being in 1681 as a result of a royal land grant to William Penn, the son of the state's namesake. Part of Pennsylvania (along the Delaware River), together with the present State of Delaware, had earlier been organized as the Colony of New Sweden. It was the second state to ratify the United States Constitution, on December 12, 1787. Independence Hall, where the United States Declaration of Independence and United States Constitution were drafted, is located in Philadelphia, the state's largest city. During the American Civil War, the Battle of Gettysburg was fought in the south central region of the state. Valley Forge near Philadelphia was General Washington's headquarters during the bitter winter of 1777-78. (Full article...)

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One of the two confirmed photos of Lincoln (center, facing camera) at Gettysburg, taken about noon, just after he arrived and some three hours before his speech. To his right is his bodyguard, Ward Hill Lamon.

The Gettysburg Address is a speech that U.S. President Abraham Lincoln delivered during the American Civil War at the dedication of the Soldiers' National Cemetery in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, on the afternoon of November 19, 1863, four and a half months after the Union armies defeated those of the Confederacy at the Battle of Gettysburg. It is one of the best-known speeches in American history.

Not even the day's primary speech, Lincoln's carefully crafted address came to be seen as one of the greatest and most influential statements of American national purpose. In just 271 words, beginning with the now iconic phrase "Four score and seven years ago,"? referring to the signing of the Declaration of Independence 87 years earlier, Lincoln described the US as a nation "conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal," and represented the Civil War as a test that would determine whether such a nation, the Union sundered by the secession crisis, could endure. He extolled the sacrifices of those who died at Gettysburg in defense of those principles, and exhorted his listeners to resolve (Full article...)

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Philadelphia skyline from South Street Bridge January 2020 (rotate 2 degrees perspective correction crop 4-1).jpg

Philadelphia, colloquially Philly, is the largest city in the U.S. state of Pennsylvania and the sixth-most populous U.S. city, with a 2019 estimated population of 1,584,064. Since 1854, the city has had the same geographic boundaries as Philadelphia County, the most-populous county in Pennsylvania and the urban core of the eighth-largest U.S. metropolitan statistical area, with over 6 million residents . Philadelphia is also the economic and cultural center of the greater Delaware Valley along the lower Delaware and Schuylkill rivers within the Northeast megalopolis. The Delaware Valley's population of 7.2 million makes it the eighth-largest combined statistical area in the United States.

Philadelphia is one of the oldest municipalities in the United States. William Penn, an English Quaker, founded the city in 1682 to serve as capital of the Pennsylvania Colony. Philadelphia played an instrumental role in the American Revolution as a meeting place for the Founding Fathers of the United States, who signed the Declaration of Independence in 1776 at the Second Continental Congress, and the Constitution at the Philadelphia Convention of 1787. Several other key events occurred in Philadelphia during the Revolutionary War including the First Continental Congress, the preservation of the Liberty Bell, the Battle of Germantown, and the Siege of Fort Mifflin. Philadelphia remained the nation's largest city until being overtaken by New York City in 1790; the city was also one of the nation's capitals during the revolution, serving as temporary U.S. capital while Washington, D.C. was under construction. In the 19th and 20th centuries, Philadelphia became a major industrial center and a railroad hub. The city grew due to an influx of European immigrants, most of whom initially came from Ireland and Germany--the two largest reported ancestry groups in the city . Later immigrant groups in the 20th century came from Italy (Italian being the third largest European ethnic ancestry currently reported in Philadelphia) and other Southern European and Eastern European countries. In the early 20th century, Philadelphia became a prime destination for African Americans during the Great Migration after the Civil War. Puerto Ricans began moving to the city in large numbers in the period between World War I and II, and in even greater numbers in the post-war period. The city's population doubled from one million to two million people between 1890 and 1950. (Full article...)

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Credit: Katie Tegtmeyer
JFK Plaza with the LOVE sculpture and fountain.

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Mid-Delaware Bridge

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Naudin Studios, Emily Sartain, ca 1880, Moore College of Art and Design, Philadelphia
Emily Sartain (March 17, 1841 - June 17, 1927) was an American painter and engraver. She was the first woman in Europe and the United States to practice the art of mezzotint engraving, and the only woman to win a gold medal at the 1876 World Fair in Philadelphia. Sartain became a nationally recognized art educator and was the director of the Philadelphia School of Design for Women from 1866 to 1920. Her father, John Sartain, and three of her brothers, William, Henry and Samuel were artists. Before she entered the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts and studied abroad, her father took her on a Grand Tour of Europe. She helped found the New Century Club for working and professional women, and the professional women's art clubs, The Plastic Club and The Three Arts Club. (Full article...)

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Hawk Mountain Sanctuary, PA - North Lookout.jpg

Hawk Mountain is a mountain ridge, part of the Blue Mountain Ridge in the Appalachian Mountain chain, located in central-eastern Pennsylvania near Reading and Allentown. The area includes 13,000 acres (5,300 ha) of protected private and public land, including the 2,600-acre (1,100 ha) Hawk Mountain Sanctuary.

The River of Rocks is visible and accessible from the Sanctuary. The boulders were formed by periglacial processes in the Pleistocene epoch, or "ice age". (Full article...)

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Pennsylvania's largest city Philadelphia
  • Nickname: The Keystone State
  • Capital: Harrisburg
  • Largest city: Philadelphia
  • Total area: 119,283 square kilometers (46,055 square miles)
  • Population (2000 census): 12,281,054
  • Date admitted to the Union: December 12, 1787 (2nd)
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Mountain laurel, Pennsylvania's state flower

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