Upper Milford Historical Society Puts Things in Perspective
The Historical Society needs your help with the production of a historical book about Upper Milford Township.
Did you know Upper Milford Township was once part of Bucks County, and later, included in Northampton County, before becoming part of Lehigh County?
At one time, both Upper Milford and Lower Milford Townships were part of a large Milford Township. In 1738, the area, which is now defined as Upper Milford Township and Lower Milford Township, separated from the larger Milford Township and were together known as Upper Milford Township, the first township in the Lehigh Valley. Then, in 1847, the current townships were created with their present boundaries.
Are you interested in the history of this area? Curious about something?
Most of us know of the one-room schoolhouses early in our country’s history. Upper Milford had several of these schools. But I bet some of you didn’t know Upper Milford Township had its own high school. It operated in the Kern’s School building, built in 1820 and located near Shimerville, from 1907 to 1925.
These are some of the little-known facts you will learn at the Upper Milford Historical Society.
The first roadway in the Lehigh Valley began in Upper Milford Township in 1735 and was known as the “Kings High Road”. With a 52-foot right-of-way, it ran from Breinigsville thru Macungie, Shimerville, Zionsville, Hosensack, Geryville and Goshenhoppen and on to North Wales, where it joined a road to Philadelphia. Kings High Road is now known as “King’s Highway,” with sections known as “Rt. 100.”
The Historical Society meets at 7 p.m. on the last Thursday of each month at the Upper Milford Municipal Center. Each meeting concludes with a speaker, who teaches us more and more about Upper Milford’s history.
Why is there a village called “Old Zionsville?” Where is “New Zionsville?” Actually, in 1734, Zionsville was once located where Old Zionsville is now. But in 1876, the Perkiomen Railroad went through the area about one mile southeast of the village and founded another village called “Zionsville Station”. Eventually “Station” was dropped and the town was known as “New Zionsville” or “Zionsville”, causing the old Zionsville to be known as “Old Zionsville.”
Confused? Then come to a meeting to see pictures and further explanations of the various villages throughout the township.
Upper Milford Township has an Indian guarding one of its parks. Chief Lapowinsa of the Lenni Lenape tribe, the original inhabitants of the township, stands guard at the entranceway to Jasper Park.
Due to wear and tear from the weather, the original statue was removed and stands in the hallway of the township building. A second statue now stands guard greeting visitors to the park.
The Historical Society needs your help with the production of a historical book about Upper Milford Township. Old pictures, documents, or certificates are requested. All items will be photographed or scanned and returned to the owner(s).
Contact Rose Parry at 610-966-4851 for information or donations for the book.
Upper Milford is a beautiful, rural township with a lot of great history. Though there are changes occuring within its borders, we need to hold onto that history for future generations.