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Chambersburg Borough

Borough municipal offices are located at 100 South Second Street, Chambersburg, PA 17201; phone: 717-264-5151.

First settled around 1730, incorporated in 1803.

Beginnings [1]

Chambersburg, seat of Franklin County, lies in the Great Valley 16 miles north of Maryland and 52 miles southwest of Harrisburg. Indian trails and two waterways crossed or merged at this site that eventually became a major coach stop on the road to the western frontier.

The first white settler and founder was Benjamin Chambers, who with his four brothers arrived in Pennsylvania from Ireland c.1726. After settling at Fishing Creek in what is now Dauphin County, Benjamin Chambers ventured west in 1730 and built a log house at the confluence of the Conococheague and the Falling Spring, the latter having a 26 foot fall ideal for a mill site. In March of 1734, Samuel Blunston, agent for the Penns, gave Chambers a license "to take and settle and improve of 400 acres of land at the Falling Spring's mouth and on both sides of the Conego Chege Creek for the conveniency of a grist mill and plantation ...

The predominantly Scotch-Irish settlement was slow in developing, impeded by both the border dispute between Pennsylvania and Maryland and the somewhat neglected fact that the land legally belonged to the Indians. In 1736, a treaty conveyed by the representatives of the Six Nations to John, Thomas, and Richard Penn "all lands lying in the west side of the said river to the setting of the sun .. ." And the Walking Purchase a year later officially opened the western bounds of what was still Lancaster County to settlers. Trouble with the Delaware and Shawnee Indians, whose land was sold without their participation in the treaties, convinced Benjamin Chambers to construct a fort in part over the Falling Spring. Chambers, now a colonel, became noted for his "good, private fort" and two four-poundc annon, as well as for his knowledge of the Indian language and numerous frontier skills. The French and Indian War ended in 1763 and marked the near-end of the raids which had hindered agriculture and commercial development.

More – see Chambersburg Historic District.

  • National Register of Historic Places, Chambersburg Historic District (nomination document)
  • 1982, National Park Service, Washington DC
    **Information is curated from a variety of sources and, while deemed reliable, is not guaranteed.
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