Universal York

Part of the USA Today Network

Mapping York, PA’s Past

Part of Freystown, 1876
Maps are fascinating. They document the charges in communities over the years. You can see how residential, social, and industrial patterns evolve as an area grows, or in some cases, retracts.
I recently looked at the when and where of North, South, East, and West streets in York, Pennsylvania. Click here to read that post.
Another look at 1836, 1850, 1876, and 1903 maps of York show changes in street names as well as disappearances of whole villages as they were absorbed into the city. The southeast side of town illustrates that well:

The 1836 Reily and Voglesong map of the Borough of York shows the eastern boundary of York just about the site of Broad Street. The borough line was still there in 1876, but by that time Broad Street had been laid out from East Market Street to just north of Walnut Street.
The village of Freystown in Spring Garden Township was just a couple of blocks long in 1836, but in 1876 was bounded by the York Borough line at Broad Street, by King Street, and by present-day Philadelphia and Albemarle streets. Sometime before 1903, Freystown had been absorbed into York.
In 1836 and 1850 New Street ran from near the Codorus Creek to near South Queen Street. Where’s New Street today? It was changed to College Avenue after York Collegiate Avenue opened at the intersection of South Duke Street in 1873. Makes sense, doesn’t it ?
Perhaps Prospect Street is so named because it leads in the direction of East Prospect. It appears as a street name in the 1876 atlas, but only starting at the Y where it meets East College Avenue. The part of Prospect Street that extends west to Queen Street was part of the Spring Garden Plank Road, a name that continues east on the road that we know as Mt. Rose Avenue.
Spring Garden Plank Road led into Spring Garden Township (Springettsbury Township wasn’t established until 1891), and it was probably at least partially paved with boards (planks). This same road, starting at South Queen Street, is labeled “Road to Peach Bottom” on the 1850 map. Why? Because it was one of earliest roads from York to the Peach Bottom ferry near Delta. It would have followed today’s Route 124 to Longstown, and then Route 24 to the Red Lion Square where it continued south down our Route 74 toward the ferry.
Click here to read about York’s Wall Street.
Click here to read about the “gypsy” basketmakers of Freystown.
What happened to Baptist Alley?