Pennsylvania History Timeline
- (1608) Captain John Smith of Virginia visited Susquehannock Indians
- (1609) Henry Hudson claimed land for Dutch
- (1615 - 1616) Explorers Etienne Brule of France, Cornelius Hendricksen of The Netherlands explored part of Pennsylvania; Brule lived among Indians
- (1632) Brule killed by Indians
- (1643) Swedes established first permanent settlement in Pennsylvania on Tinicum Island
- (1655) Dutch seized Swedish settlements
- (1664) British captured Dutch colonies in name of Duke of York
- (1676) Duke of York's Laws introduced for English laws, civil government
- (1681) William Penn received royal grant of Pennsylvania from King Charles II
- (1682) Duke of York deeded lands to William Penn; Penn arrived in Pennsylvania, laid out Philadelphia; created three original counties; first Assembly held, united Delaware counties with Pennsylvania, adopted Great Law
- (1683) Penn signed friendship treaty with Lenni Lenape Indians; Mennonite families arrived from Germany, settled Germantown
- (1684) Congress named William Penn and wife, Hannah Callowhill Penn, third, fourth honorary citizens of U. S.
- (1686) Penn purchased land along Lehigh River from Lenape Indians
- (1688) Germantown Quakers adopted first antislavery resolution in America
- (1701) Penn presented Charter of Privileges for Province of Pennsylvania; established religious freedom, tolerance. Remained as constitution until American Revolution
- (1712) Pennsylvania Assembly banned importing of slaves
- (1720) First Catholic congregation organized in Philadelphia
- (1731) Benjamin Franklin opened first U.S. library
- (1737) Pennsylvania took over large portion of native American land, (Walking Purchase)
- (1744) Benjamin Franklin established American Philosophical Society in Philadelphia
- (1750) Benjamin Franklin used kite to establish that lightning is a form of electricity
- (1752) Benjamin Franklin tested lightning rod; Liberty Bell arrived in Philadelphia
- (1754) French and Indian War began; George Washington claimed first victory at Laurel Mountain; Lenape Indians attacked Gnadenhutten Mission, killed 11 white people
- (1754 - 1763) French and Indian War
- (1755) Gen. Graddock's British troops slaughtered near Monongahela
- (1758) Gen. John Forbes led British forces in capture of Fort Duquesne
- (1763) Indians rose up against British colonies
- (1767) Boundary between Maryland, Pennsylvania established, named Mason-Dixon line
- (1773) Philadelphia refused entry to tea ships
- (1774) First Continental Congress met secretly in Philadelphia; protested British measures, taxes
- (1775) Second Continental Congress met, George Washington named supreme commander; postal system for colonies established, Benjamin Franklin first postmaster general
- (1776) A committee of the Second Continental Congress consisting of John Adams of Massachusetts, Benjamin Franklin of Pennsylvania, Thomas Jefferson of Virginia, Robert R. Livingston of New York, and Roger Sherman of Connecticut (the "Committee of Five") was formed to draft a declaration of independence from Britain. The resulting Declaration of Independence was signed in Philadelphia; Pennsylvania established commonwealth; Betsy Ross sewed first American flag
- (1777 - 1778) British troops occupied Philadelphia; General George Washington (America's first President) and his bloodied and battle-worn Continental Army wintered at Valley Forge, Pennsylvania. This tactical decision provided a much-needed rest and retraining period, and after six months in camp his highly-motivated and revitalized army marched out of Valley Forge to defeat the British in battle after battle.
- (1777) Congress of United States left Philadelphia, moved to York
- (1780) Pennsylvania first state to abolish slavery
- (1787) Pennsylvania second state to ratify U. S. Consitutition
- (1790 - 1800) Philadelphia capital of U. S.
- (1792) Philadelphia shoemakers formed first union
- (1793) Yellow fever epidemic in Philadelphia killed about 2,000
- (1794) Whiskey Rebellion occurred - protest against taxes on distilled spirits
- (1812) Harrisburg became state capital
- (1835) Liberty Bell cracked while being tolled for Chief Justice John Marshall
- (1840's) Chain Gang, earliest Mummers Club, founded
Pennsylvania Cities, Counties & Area Codes
Trending on WorldAtlas
The Most Dangerous Cities in the World
The Largest Countries in the World
Shanghai, China is said to be the world's most populated city.
Is the Moon a Planet or a Star?
Why Does Ice Float?
The 10 Smallest Countries In The World
The Most Popular Sports in the World
Which Country Has the Most Lakes?
29 Largest Armies In The World