part of Pike and Northampton counties,
County was formed on April 1, 1836, and
named for President James Monroe. The most famous names in Monroe County
history is Jacob Stroud and John Sullivan. Read about them and
lots more about Monroe County
history right here!
GENERAL JOHN SULLIVAN
important event in Pocono History was an expedition across the Pocono
Mountains known as Sullivans March
in June 1779. It was an expedition planned by General George Washington
to exterminate and destroy the hostile tribes of the Indians of
the Six Nations. It was a mission to which the Congress assigned
as a high priority.
colonies were not only fighting for the survival of a nation with
the British, but also fighting native Indian tribes. For many years
the Indian tribes felt cheated by white people in an Indian
World. The Walking Purchase of 1737 was an agreement with
the Indians that was misunderstood and left the tribes frustrated
and infuriated. It led to many bloody attacks and massacres on
Washington needed a top rate commander to end hostilities once and
for all. He first offered the position to General Horatio Gates,
hero of Saratoga. When General Gates declined, Washington
offered the job to General John Sullivan. Colonel Daniel Brodhead,
raised in East Stroudsburg was
also considered for the position.
plan was simple. General Sullivan would gather his forces near Easton
and advance through the Pocono Mountains, going through Sciota
and Tannersville, then up the Susquehanna
to Fort Wyoming.
Sullivans instructions were to destroy the Indian nations
and everything in their path, including
their reservations, crops and food supplies.
instructed Sullivan not to accept any offers of peace under any
felt the Indian tribes would offer insincere proposals of peace
to spare their reservations. He also felt our nations future
security would rest on how much terror our forces could inflict
upon them. He suggested that small parties be sent out to destroy
villages out of the main line of march
and follow Indian trails wherever they may lead. Sullivans
men were trained to conduct tactical exercises for fighting in the
wilderness against an enemy that defied traditional tactics.
reached Easton in early May and encountered
many setbacks. His troops could not embark ontheir mission due
to the impassable roads and woodlands to Fort Wyoming.
With artillery and supply wagons roads needed to be cut. Woodlands
were so thick that man cannot get through them but on his
hands and knees. Washington
sent road building regiments to clear the way for the expedition.
Heavy rains delayed the work and there were engineering problems
like getting a bridge constructed over the Tobyhanna Creek.
Tall trees, underbrush and boulders blocked the way. Only after
six weeks of work by hundreds of men could General Sullivan declare
the road work complete.
the Wyoming Road opened
June 10th, the regiments left Easton
The expedition was already far behind schedule, but on June 18th
General Sullivan ordered his troops to break camp and set out for
were 2,500 men with over 2,000 horses and baggage wagons. They
advanced 12 miles on their first day and camped near Wind Gap.
On Saturday morning the expedition made its way to Brinkers
Mill in Sciota. From Brinkers Mill
the expedition traveled to Learneds
Tavern near the foot of Big Pocono.
is a historical marker on the corner of Route 611 and Old Mill Road in Tannersville. It states
Learneds Tavern marked the
end of the second day march from Easton to Forty Wyoming at Wilkes Barre. The army camped here June 19th 1799 after
a 16 mile march from Hellers Tavern.
longest, most tiring day of the expedition was Monday, June 21st
after they advanced over 21 miles. They crossed Tunkhannock and
Tobyhanna Creeks, then pressed through
what soldiers called the Shades of Death before finding
a suitable campsite.
Sullivan Expedition was the first major Continental Army to cross
the Pocono Mountains. There were
no major engagements, but its operation forced the opening of a
major road that made the region accessible for future transportation
the military significance of Sullivans campaign is a matter
of argument, its social and economic importance is generally not
in dispute. The expedition had not destroyed the bands of hostile
Indians but it had dispersed them. After a winter of relative quiet,
the spring of 1780 was marked by a renewal of terror.
Stroud is Monroe Countys
most historic founding father. He symbolized the frontier spirit
of the 18th century and helped take America
from colonialism to nationhood. He was a soldier in the French
and Indian War and the American Revolution. He served as a delegate
to the first Pennsylvania Constitutional Convention and was a member
of the Pennsylvania General Assembly.
Stroud was born on January 15, 1735 and moved to Lower
in Northampton County
County) at an early age. He was an apprentice
to Nicholas Depui, the earliest permanent
settler in the region. In 1761 he married Elizabeth McDowell, granddaughter
of Nicholas Depui.
Stroud became a prominent businessman and in February 1769 he purchased
300 acres of land west of Dansbury. The
purchase included a grist mill, a residence and other dwellings.
Over time he built and developed a saw mill, blacksmith shop, a
tavern and general store. While the business grew so did the Stroud
family they were blessed with 12 children, 9 girls and 3
boys. He built a large home for his family near the corner of present
day Main and Fifth Streets.
the American Revolution Jacob Stroud served as a Captain and then
a Colonel, a rank he held throughout the war. Stroud also served
in the political process and was a delegate to the first Pennsylvania
Constitutional Convention and later served as a representative in
the Pennsylvania General Assembly.
the war Stroud spent his remaining years developing his landholdings
and business. By 1788 he owned 1,400 acres and then increased his
holdings to over 4,000 acres.
his children grew and got married, he built homes for those who
remained in the area. The home he built for his son John is presently
the Clubhouse of the Glenbrook Country Club. The home he built
for Daniel Stroud in 1795 is today the headquarters for the Monroe
County Historical Association at the corner of ninth and Main Streets
Stroud died on July 14, 1806. His legacy is far reaching. He was
a frontiersman, a soldier, a patriot, a successful businessman,
and most importantly, a family man. The town of Stroudsburg still remembers his spirit and aspirations
200 years later!
AND GOULDSBORO STATE PARK
1900 to 1936 Tobyhanna and Gouldsboro lakes in Monroe County
were the site of active ice industries. The ice was cut from the
lakes over the winter months and stored in large underground structures.
During the summer months the ice was packed in railway boxcars hauling
fresh produce all over the east coast.
1912 the federal government acquired the land that became the Tobyhanna
Military Reservation. In World War I the Army used the reservation
for tank training and was an ambulance corps training center. After
the war the reservation was used for artillery training until 1931.
In the 1930s the Civilian Conservation Corps had more that
400 men housed there. They planted thousands of trees in the county.
1937 to 1941, the reservation served as an artillery training center
for West Point cadets. During
World War II the base served the Air Service Command where Gliders
were boxed and sent to England
for use in the Normandy
invasion in 1944. German prisoners-of-war were also interned there.
In 1949 the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania purchased 25,000 acres from
the federal government, with the remaining lands becoming the Tobyhanna
Army Depot, which still remains today.
opened in 1949 with parking areas, swimming beaches and boat rentals.
Camping was added in 1959. Gouldsboro
opened to the public in 1958 and also has parking areas, swimming
beaches and boat rentals.
Tocks Island Dam was a huge multi-purpose reservoir project proposed
for the Delaware River six miles
upstream from the Delaware Water Gap. The project involved the
purchase of 70,000 acres of land, construction of a 40 mile long
lake with depths up to 150 feet with a storage capacity of 250 billion
gallons of water. It would have been the largest dam project east
of the Mississippi River.
thought of building a dam along the Delaware River began in 1934,
when the Army Corps recommended a large dam be built by Tocks
1942 the corps conducted tests to see if the ground was stable enough
to support a dam. The borings were taken down to 140 feet below
the riverbed, but no bedrock was found to secure a firm foundation
for the dam. The costs would be astronomical.
dam was to have served four purposes: flood control, water supply,
hydroelectric power and recreation. The most exciting spin-off
was that the project would have created a national recreation area
serving both New York and Philadelphia
metro areas including New
1961 the formation of the Delaware River Basin Commission was established,
comprised of representatives of the Governors of Pennsylvania,
New Jersey, New
York and Delaware.
A year later Congress passed the Flood Control Act of 1962 calling
for the Tocks Island Dam Project to be built. In 1965 President
Lyndon Johnson authorized construction of the dam. Construction
was to begin in 1967 and by 1972 the reservoir was to begin filling
and be fully operational by 1975.
to the project began almost immediately among landowners on both
sides of the Delaware
whose properties were targeted for condemnation. The Delaware Valley
Conservation Association was established in 1965 with more than
a 1,000 members to fight the project.
Army corps were accused of having properties appraised at much lower
values than they were actually worth. The Corps were demanding
many sellers evacuate their properties immediately, even though
the flooding would not take place for years. Families that had
farms for generations along the Delaware
were treated like second rate citizens as the federal government
rode roughshod over their lives. At least two landowners committed
number of other problems developed for the project. Costs for the
dam began to mushroom in the late 1960s and the Johnson Administration
was mired in the escalating cost of the Vietnam War. In addition,
squatters, family communes and flower children began
living along the Delaware in abandoned houses
- others set up tents and teepees.
Pocono residents resented the hippies cultivating marijuana
and living in the homes that they had to vacate. Nude bathing and
drug dealing was commonplace.
in 1973 a judge ruled the squatters were illegally occupying the
valley and ordered to vacate within 30 days.
July 31, 1975 the Delaware River Commission voted 3 1 against
the immediate construction of the Tocks Island Dam. Pennsylvania
was the only state to approve the dam, while the federal government
abstained. The Commission stopped the dam, but the true end of
the project came in 1978 when Congress designated the section of
the river that is within the recreation area as a Wild and
Scenic River, in effect barring the construction of any dams
at the Tocks Island
site or anywhere along this section of the river. In 1992, the
Tocks Island Dam Project was officially de-authorized by Congress.
the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area is a 70,000 acre
national jewel with more than 10,000,000 visitors each year.
FLOOD OF 1955
Flood of 1955 was the most destructive force and greatest natural
disaster ever to hit the Delaware River Valley.
Two hurricanes, Connie and then Diane, delivered a devastating one-two
punch within a week of one another in August 1955. On August 11th
Hurricane Connie deposited 10+ inches of rain in a 48 hour period
in the Pocono Mountains, putting the Delaware and its tributaries
at flood stage. A week later on August 18th Diane brought
another 11¼ inches in a 36 hour period, with disastrous results.
of gallons of water roared down the mountainsides, uprooting trees
and homes from their foundations. Boulders weighing more than ten
tons were carried along like pebbles by the force of the water.
Bridges were destroyed and cars were tossed about like toy cars.
Residents fled for their lives. Tributaries swelled unbelievably,
some rising 30 feet in fifteen minutes.
30 foot-high flood wave on Brodhead Creek disintegrated the building
of a religious camp south of Analomink,
sweeping away 46 campers, most of them children. Eight were rescued,
but 30 others perished.
other Pocono camps were destroyed. Another 32 people died in East
Stroudsburg as flood waters ripped apart homes in Maplehurst flats behind the high school. The main Stroudsburg-East Stroudsburg
swept away. A number of people were killed when the flood roared
into the Day Street Fire Hall.
the evening of August 20th, with the population overwhelmed
by the disaster, water was observed flowing over the top of the
Wallenpaupack Dam. A rumor began to circulate
that the dam was going to burst. Many residents began evacuating
the Lackawaxen River
region for fear of the worst.
were set up at schools, churches and fire halls all over the Pocono
region to provide temporary shelter and food. Air Force helicopters
brought children out of isolated camps. Civil Air Patrols dropped
food to others. President Eisenhower declared a state of emergency
and Governor Leader estimated the damage at near one billion dollars.
river the devastation was just as bad. In New
Jersey flood damage totaled $100,000,000
- an incredible sum for those days. The Washington Crossing
Bridge had flood waters
raging over the road surface, while further downstream the Ewing Bridge
all was said and done more than one hundred Pocono residents lost
their lives in the Flood of 1955. There were dozens of people missing
and hundreds left homeless. Bodies were still being recovered years
later while others were never found.
worst flood in the history of the Poconos
destroyed 42 highway bridges, 17 railroad bridges and more than
20,000 homes were lost.
Flood of 1942
show that the Flood of 1942 was worse than 1955. Honesdale was
hardest hit when a dam on the Lackawaxen River above Honesdale gave way, causing
a ten foot wall of water to sweep through the town. It was said
that the water rose 15 feet in 15 minutes.
bridges in Honesdale were destroyed, 46 homes in ruin and 1,200
homes were damaged. Worst of all 24 people from Wayne
their lives. Visit the Flood Gallery.
is one of fourteen institutions in the Pennsylvania State System
of Higher Education and the only one located in the Pocono
Stroudsburg Normal School opened its doors on September 4, 1893.
A faculty of fifteen greeted a group of 320 students who had entered
the two-year programs in Elementary and Science Education. The
Normal School was privately owned until ownership was transferred
to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
1927, the right to confer the degrees of Bachelor of Science in
Education and Bachelor of Science in Health Education was granted,
and the Schools name then became the State
Teachers College at East
1960, the Colleges name was changed to East Stroudsburg State
College. In 1962, the College received the right to confer graduate
degrees and the University awarded its first Graduate degrees in
1964. At that time the Graduate School enrollment was 194, it is now over
College achieved university status and officially became East
on July 1, 1983.
there are 61 campus buildings located on 213 acres in the East
Stroudsburg community. There are nine residence halls
housing 2200 students, and a 1,000 seat dining room on campus.
The University faculty totals 274 while another 382 employees make
up the management and non-instructional staff. ESU is a comprehensive
university offering an array of undergraduate and graduate degrees.
PRESIDENT GEORGE W. BUSH VISITS
TOBYHANNA ARMY DEPOT
George W. Bush made history in Monroe
he gave a Veterans Day speech on November 11, 2005 to 2,500 dignitaries,
veterans and employees at Tobyhanna Army Depot. He become the
first sitting President to ever visit Monroe County.
Bush flew from Andrews Air Force Base to Scranton/Wilkes Barre
Airport in Air Force One, then flew by
helicopter from the airport to the army depot. Guests included
Pennsylvania Senator Arlen Spector, Representatives Paul Kanjorski and Don Sherwood and
Presidential advisor Karl Rove. Senator Rick Santorum was conspicuous
by his absence, stating that he had a prior commitment for a Veterans
Day function in Philadelphia. The Pocono Mountain West High
School band performed as the crowds filed in before the president
Presidents theme was A Strategy for Victory when
he blasted Iraq war critics and praised local
veterans. He thanked the Tobyhanna Army Depot staff for their
technical expertise and bravery. The depot has 4,400 workers that
specialize in repairing and maintaining high-tech communications
systems throughout the world, including Iraq
his fifty minute speech the President urged Americans to stay the
course on the War on Terrorism. He said Were not facing
a set of grievances that can be soothed and addressed,
were facing a radical ideology. He went on the say
that As our troops fight a ruthless enemy determined to destroy
our way of life, they deserve to know that their elected leaders
who voted to send them to war continue to stand behind them.
After his speech the President walked through the crowd and greeted
many of his supporters.
review ranged from positive to ecstatic. God Bless you, Mr.
President! one supporter called out. Thanks for coming!
another yelled. Another supporter said I knew I was coming
to hear a good speech. One of the depot employees said It
was a real morale booster.
depot is an economic powerhouse as the regions largest employer
and draws workers from ten counties. Employment at the depot is
at an all time high with another
300 to 500 jobs expected in the near future. Since 9/11 the depot
has doubled its production of electronics equipment for all branches
of the armed forces. Today the Tobyhanna Army Depot is the largest,
full-service electronics maintenance facility in the Department
of Defense including voice and data communications, satellite
communications systems, communications security systems, wire communications,
airborne surveillance, navigation, radar/ground surveillance, night
vision and many other systems.
THE APPALACHIAN TRAIL
Appalachian Trail is a footpath of more than 2,150 miles with 232
miles lying in Pennsylvania and 45 miles
lying in the Pocono region. In 1921, U.S. Forest Service Planner,
Benton MacKaye, wrote a magazine article suggesting a trail be established
to connect Mount Washington in New Hampshire
to Mount Mitchell in North
a Harvard graduate, was convinced that the pace of urban and industrial
life along the east coast was harmful to people. He envisioned
the Appalachian Trail as a path
interspersed with planned wilderness
communities where people could go to renew themselves. As a result,
in 1925 he gathered hikers, foresters, and public officials to embrace
the goal of building the Trail. The Appalachian Trail Conference
D.C. appointed MacKaye as its field organizer
and chose the exact path, flagged the path, built various sections,
including shelter, bridges and steps. They wrote a guidebook to
aid hikers and backpackers.
1968, Congress passed the National Trails System Act, making the
AT the first
Scenic Trail. Today there are 30 clubs that help maintain
the trail, which now extends from Mount Katahdin,
Maine to Springer
Appalachian Trail runs more than 45 spectacular miles through the
Pocono Mountains along the southern borders of Carbon and Monroe Counties,
then through the Delaware Water Gap into the Delaware Water Gap
National Recreation Area. The Poconos have hundreds of miles
of spectacular hiking trails, but none as famous as the Appalachian Trail.
Appalachian Trail through the Pocono
practical purposes we will begin the Appalachian Trail in the Pocono
region at the southwest corner of Carbon
County and the southeast
corner of Schuylkill County. From this point the trail and
the Carbon County line runs along the ridge of Blue Mountain at
approximately 1,500 feet elevation for 9 ½ miles to the Lehigh Gap.
Along the way there are spectacular vistas both to the north and
south. Your hike takes you past Bake Oven knob, over the Lehigh
Valley Tunnel and then down to the Lehigh Gap.
Lehigh Gap is a break in Blue
Mountain carved by the
Lehigh River. It has been a natural avenue of commerce,
with a highway, canal and railroads squeezed through the narrow
river banks. The canal opened in 1829, allowing delivery of coal
to the iron industry of eastern Pennsylvania.
The first road bridge over the river was in 1818.
is just to the north and named after the President of the New Jersey
the Lehigh Gap (at less than 500 foot elevation) the hiker must
climb back to the 1,500 foot ridge of Blue
Mountain for another 36½ mile hike to the Delaware Water Gap. Along
the way the trail will pass Little Gap into Monroe
County. The trail continues to follow
the ridge of Blue Mountain along the boundary
line of Monroe County
and Northampton County.
The trail continues past Smith Gap, then across Route 33 at Wind
Gap, past Pen Argyl to the south on to the Kittatinny Mountain ridge. The trail goes through
Fox Gap, Tots Gap to Mount Minsi,
then dramatically drops down over 1,000
feet to the Delaware River and the Delaware Water Gap. Once you cross
the river you enter New Jersey and the trail
rambles through the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area.
Delaware Water Gap twists through a 2 ½ mile cleft in the Kittatinny
named after the Indian tribe, rises on the Pennsylvania
side of the 1,200 foot deep gorge. Mount Tammany on the New
Jersey side was named after a distinguished
Indian chief. Passage through the Gap was so rough and dangerous
to early settlers that the first road was not constructed until
45 mile trail through the Pocono region is considered moderate
to strenuous to easy. The trail can challenge
experienced hikers but also can be enjoyed by novices as well.
It is a trail that can be enjoyed by all with natural beauty second
Appalachian Trail Conference became the Appalachian Trail Conservancy
in 2005. Their mission is to ensure that future generations will
enjoy the clean air and water, scenic vistas, wildlife and opportunities
for simple recreation and renewal along the entire Trail corridor.
is a family name that is quite familiar to the residents in Monroe
Creek and Brodheadsville are well known landmarks in the community.
Daniel Brodhead Sr. was one of the founders of Dansbury,
later known as East Stroudsburg.
His son, Daniel was a General in the Continental Army and served
under George Washington.
Sr. settled on a 640 acre estate called Brodhead Manor with his
family in 1738. This was just a year after the Walking Purchase
of 1737 when young Daniel was just two years old. The Brodhead
family invited Moravian missionaries to establish a station there.
Other settlers soon made their homes nearby. The elder Daniel died
in July 1755. That same year nineteen year old Daniel helped his
family and neighbors defend their homes against an attack by the
Delaware Indians under Chief Teedyuscung.
1770 Daniel and his wife Elizabeth Depue
had moved their family to Berks
operated a grist mill and accepted an appointment as deputy-surveyor
for the Colony of Pennsylvania. In 1774 he served as a delegate
for Berks County
and was appointed to a convention committee where he worked with
other young men destined to be among the Founding Fathers of the
new nation, including John Dickinson, Joseph Reed, and James Wilson,
who later purchased the Wallenpaupack Manor in 1793.
1775, with the War for Independence beginning, Daniel and his two brothers
joined the army. All three sustained wounds and suffered hardships,
but it was Daniel who earned a place in history during the Revolutionary
War. In July 1776, he received a commission of Lieutenant Colonel
and later fought in the battles of Long Island, Brandywine and Germantown. He served under General Anthony
Wayne (for whom Wayne County is named) and was with Washington
at Valley Forge. In June, 1778
he was ordered to lead the 8th Pennsylvania Regiment
across the mountains to Fort Pitt
for service on the frontier. He later obtained the rank of Brigadier
1788, following the death of his wife, he married Rebecca Mifflin,
widow of Samuel Mifflin. Samuels brother Thomas was later
elected the first Governor of Pennsylvania. Daniel attained his
highest civilian post in 1789 when he as elected surveyor-general
by the Pennsylvania State Executive Council and then worked under
Governor Thomas Mifflin, elected in 1790.
his resignation as surveyor-general in 1800 the Brodheads moved to Milford,
he died in the summer of 1809.