Montour County, PA and the Susquehanna River

Montour County PA - Danville & The Susquehanna River

The Susquehanna River in Montour County from Mill Street in Danville.

Montour County, PA is noted for its rural beauty and outstanding quality of life. It is home to rolling farmlands, state game lands, state forests, nature preserves and the Susquehanna River and several tributaries. In fact, Danville, PA in Montour County, PA is considered a “river town” because of its proximity to the Susquehanna River.

At 464 miles long,it is the longest river on the American east coast that drains into the Atlantic Ocean, and is the longest river in the continental United States without commercial boat traffic. The Susquehanna forms from two main branches, with the “North Branch”, which rises in upstate New York. The shorter West Branch, joins the North Branch near Northumberland in central Pennsylvania.

Danville, PA in Montour County, PA

Danville, PA is a small, historic town located within Montour County, PA the smallest County in the Commonwealth. From the 1800s, Danville forged a reputation as an iron-making center, creating and manufacturing the railroad industry’s iron T-rail, which contributed greatly to the area’s success, employing over a thousand people. The mills, blast furnaces and foundries continued to operate through the turn of the century.

Today, Danville, PA in Montour County, PA celebrates its iron heritage each year in July with a multiple-day festival called the Iron Heritage Festival.

Iron Heritage Festival in Danville, PA in Montour County, PA

Iron Heritage Festival

The Iron Heritage festival includes live demonstartions.

The Iron Heritage festival, held each year in late July in Danville, PA in Montour County, PA honors Danville’s iron history and heritage. The Iron Age, 1829 thru 1950 and Danville, PA are truly synonymous.

In 1829, the first Iron foundry was established in Danville, PA to manufacture wagon boxes, plowshares, andirons sadiron and griddles. In 1839-1840 Iron Ore started to be mined locally and in 1840 the first Anthracite furnace to efficiently produce iron was opened in Danville, PA.

On Oct 8, 1845, the first T-rail in America was rolled out at the Montour Iron Works, the largest iron manufacturing plant in the United States. The T-rail made it possible for Pennsylvania and America to become the leader in the industrial revolution.

Montour County, PA’s Major Employer: Geisinger Medical Center

Geisinger Medical Center

Geisinger Medical Center

Geisinger Medical Center, a nationally-known and nationally-recognized health care system, is located in the small community of Danville, PA in Montour County, PA. The hospital and health care system, Geisinger Health Plan, are primary providers of jobs to the community of Danville, PA, Montour County, PA and beyond. Geisinger is also one of the premiere providers of healthcare to the larger Central PA region.

Founded in 1915 by Abigail Geisinger, Geisinger is a physician-led health care system, dedicated to health care, education, research and service spanning 43 counties across Pennsylvania Geisinger serves more than 2.6 million people. Geisinger in Danville, PA is now the largest rural healthcare facility in the country. The Geisinger system employs nearly 11,000 full-time employees and more than 2,500 part-time employees.

Geisinger Health System offers health care professionals opportunities to practice their skills in the beautiful northeastern and central region of Pennsylvania with its mountains, forests, lakes and streams – an active rural alternative in Danville, PA as compared to crowded urban living.

PPL Montour and Montour Preserve in Montour County, PA

PPL Utilities is another employer in Montour County, PA. PPL Montour is a coal-fired power plant in Washingtonville, PA. The plant has about 280 full-time employees. PPL has invested about $600 million to install environmental control equipment on Montour’s two generating units that removes nearly all of the sulfur dioxide from plant emissions. Both scrubbers became operational in 2008.

Since the Montour County, PA plant isn’t located along a major river or stream, its main source of water is a 12-mile pipeline to the West Branch of the Susquehanna River. As a backup water source, PPL created the Lake Chillisquaque reservoir.

Lake Chillisquaque and Montour Preserve in Montour County, PA

Sunset at PPL Montour Preserve

Sunset over Lake Chillisquaque at PPL Montour Preserve.

Surrounding the reservoir is the Montour Environmental Preserve in Montour County, PA a 1,000-acre area that includes a wildlife refuge, hiking trails and a visitors center. In the center of the preserve is 165-acre Lake Chillisquaque, developed to provide a backup reservoir of cooling water for the power plant. The preserve now offers a variety of educational and recreational opportunities, including hiking, nature observation and photography, birding, boating and fishing, as well as hunting nearby in Montour County, PA.

Places to Stay in Danville, PA

Places to Eat in Danville, PA


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