In 1682, John Sharpless settled in Nether Providence Township on a 1,000-acre tract of land along Ridley Creek that had been granted to him by William Penn. Other settlers soon followed, establishing Nether Providence as a small, successful, farming community. Over the next two centuries, Nether Providence grew into a thriving manufacturing center with 14 operating mills along the township's two creeks. At the turn of the 19th century, Nether Providence became a summer resort area rivaling the Main Line of Philadelphia, with such famous residents as Dr. Horace Howard Furness, a well-regarded Shakespearean scholar and the brother of architect Frank Furness, and Alexander Kelly McClure, the owner of the Philadelphia Times and an assistant adjunct general appointed by Pres. Abraham Lincoln during the Civil War. In 2007, Wallingford, the largest community in Nether Providence, was named by Money Magazine as the ninth best place to live in the United States.
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The Early Settlers
The Growth of Manufacturing
Educating the Children
The Development of Community Services
Recreation and Religion
A Summer Retreat for the Wealthy
The Arts and Crafts Community
The Developers Arrive
20th century photograph Avondale Road Baltimore Pike Beatty Road Blue Route Borough of Rose Brookhaven Road building City of Chester Community Arts Center Copples Lane County Planning Commission Crum Creek Delaware County Institute Delaware County Planning Dixon early 20th century farm Frank Furness golf Guild Hall Hinkson's Corners Historic Archives Commission Horace Howard Furness Institute of Science John Sharpless Leiper House Lindenshade located in Nether Media Fire Department Media Historic Archives Memorial Bridge Mervyn Harris mill houses mill workers Morris Potter Nether Providence High Nether Providence Historical Nether Providence Township North Providence Road Pendle Hill Pennsylvania photograph shows private residence Providence Historical Society Ridley Creek Rose Valley Road Sackville Mills School was built Shown Smedley Park South Media Fire Springfield Township Springhaven Country Club Strath Haven summer home Swarthmore Thomas Hibberd Thomas Leiper tricentennial trolley line Upper Providence Township Victoria Plush Mills Wallingford Community Arts William Lightfoot Price