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Rose Valley Borough

Rose Valley Borough Municipal offices are located on Old Mill Lane, Rose Valley, PA 19065; phone: 610-566-2040.

Thunderbird Lodge, built circa 1790, is noted as a major renovation (1901) by prominent Philadelphia architect William Lightfoot Price (1861-1916). Price was best-known in his connections with the Arts and Crafts movement in America. He studied under Quaker architect Addison Hutton. Thunderbird Lodge was the home and workplace of two noted artists who were also community leaders in Rose Valley—Charles H. and Alice B. Stephens. Subsequent owners (1932) were Allen Seymour Olmsted II (1889-1977) was involved in the incorporation of Rose Valley as a borough in 1923. Mrs. Olmsted was a pioneering social worker who, among other things helped establish Pennsylvania's first birth control clinic. Thunderbird Lodge was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1989.

"Rose Valley was included in land grants by William Penn in 1681 to three Vernon brothers - Thomas, Robert and Randal—while they were still in England. They all arrived here the following year. Robert's grant was confirmed by patent in 1684, Thomas's in 1702 and Randal's in 1711. The three brothers' lands were contiguous, and each had considerable frontage on the east side of Ridley Creek. Randal Vernon built his home on what is now Rabbit Run, and that home still stands. The part of Rose Valley we know as Todmorden was also part of Randal Vernon's grant, but it was not until 1831 when Samuel Bancroft bought the farm and mill on that site that the house was called Todmorden — a name which is said to mean "Death of the Fox" or "End of the Hunt." Robert Vernon's home may have been the three-story stone house on Old Mill Lane, now known as the Bishop White House, getting that name from William White who sent his family here from Philadelphia during an epidemic of yellow fever in 1793." [1]

Parks [1]

Saul Wildlife Sanctuary—The 12-acre Maurice Bower Saul Wildlife Sanctuary was given over a period of years to the Borough by Maurice Bower Saul and his wife Adele Scott Saul. A Marker was erected by devoted neighbors and Borough Council in 1974 at the entrance to the sanctuary behind the Old Mill. The Saul Wildlife Sanctuary contains many of the same trees and plants as are found in Long Point Wildlife Sanctuary. In addition, the Saul Sanctuary contains an number of specimen trees and shrubs to include Pagoda Dogwood, Pignut Hickory, Bigleaf Magnolia and Umbrella Magnolia (Pennsylvania Rare), Swamp Magnolia (one of the largest in Delaware County), London Planetree, and Coastal Plain Willow. Perhaps the most interesting is a magnificent Tulip Poplar, also one of the largest in Delaware County. Hardy Bamboo, an invasive, is spreading rapidly in one corner of the sanctuary. The Saul Wildlife Sanctuary contains the remains of the dam and Mill Race, originally constructed in 1789 to divert water from Ridley Creek to the Old Mill.

Pew Park - In 1933, Council accepted dedication, for park and street purposes, an acre of land from John G. Pew-a triangular piece at the north end of the Borough that caused an awkward dogleg in the road just before the Moylan-Rose Valley Station. Council used Works Progress Administration funds for straightening the road and for landscaping the triangle now known as Pew Park. Two tiled pillars, originally located on Rose Valley Road opposite the entrance to Old Mill Lane, were moved to Pew Park in 1995. The pillars originally marked the entryway to the Rose Valley Land Company's real estate venture on Porter Lane and Possum Hollow Road in 1911. Two of the Borough's longest serving civic leaders are honored with plaques in Pew Park: Mary Whalen Saul McLaughlin, 41 years on Council and 21 years as President, and George H. Greer, 29 years as Controller and 23 years as Mayor.

  1. Borough of Rose Valley,, 11/2005
**Information is curated from a variety of sources and, while deemed reliable, is not guaranteed.
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