Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania State Flag Gifts & Merchandise

Date of Statehood: December 12, 1787

Capital: Harrisburg

Population: 12,702,379 (2010)

Size: 46,055 square miles

Nickname(s): Keystone State

Motto: Virtue, Liberty and Independence

Tree: Hemlock

Flower: Mountain Laurel

Bird: Ruffed Grouse

Pennsylvania Timeline
  • 1608 - English explorer Captain John Smith sails up the Susquehanna River.
  • 1609 - Henry Hudson claims much of the region for the Dutch.
  • 1643 - Swedish settlers found the first permanent settlement.
  • 1664 - The land comes under the control of the British.
  • 1681 - William Penn is given a large tract of land by King Charles II. He names it Pennsylvania.
  • 1701 - The Charter of Privileges is signed by William Penn establishing a government.
  • 1731 - The first U.S. library is opened by Benjamin Franklin.
  • 1767 - The Mason-Dixon Line is agreed upon as the southern border with Maryland.
  • 1774 - The First Continental Congress meets in Philadelphia.
  • 1775 - The Second Continental Congress meets, creating the Continental Army with George Washington as the leader.
  • 1777 - The city of Philadelphia is occupied by the British.
  • 1780 - Slavery is abolished.
  • 1787 - Pennsylvania ratifies the Constitution and becomes the 2nd state.
  • 1812 - The state capital moves to Harrisburg.
  • 1835 - The Liberty Bell cracks.
  • 1863 - The Battle of Gettysburg occurs. It is the turning point of the Civil War.
  • 1953 - Dr. Jonas Salk discovers the vaccine for polio while working at the University of Pittsburgh.

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