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Hanover, Pennsylvania

Hanover, Pennsylvania

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Hanover is a borough
A borough is an administrative division in various countries. In principle, the term borough designates a self-governing township although, in practice, official use of the term varies widely....

 in York County
York County, Pennsylvania
York County is a county in the U.S. state of Pennsylvania. As of 2010, the population was 434,972. It is in the Susquehanna Valley, a large fertile agricultural region in South Central Pennsylvania....

, Pennsylvania
The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania is a U.S. state that is located in the Northeastern and Mid-Atlantic regions of the United States. The state borders Delaware and Maryland to the south, West Virginia to the southwest, Ohio to the west, New York and Ontario, Canada, to the north, and New Jersey to...

, 19 miles (30.6 km) southwest of York
York, Pennsylvania
York, known as the White Rose City , is a city located in York County, Pennsylvania, United States which is in the South Central region of the state. The population within the city limits was 43,718 at the 2010 census, which was a 7.0% increase from the 2000 count of 40,862...

 and 54 miles (86.9 km) north-northwest of Baltimore, Maryland.
The town is situated in a productive agricultural region. The population was 15,289 at the 2010 census. The borough is served by a 717
Area code 717
Area code 717 is a telephone area code which serves south central Pennsylvania, used in the Harrisburg-Lancaster-York metropolitan areas. 717 was one of the original area codes established in 1947, and originally covered the eastern half of the state except for the Delaware and Lehigh valleys...

 area code and the Zip Codes
ZIP Code
ZIP codes are a system of postal codes used by the United States Postal Service since 1963. The term ZIP, an acronym for Zone Improvement Plan, is properly written in capital letters and was chosen to suggest that the mail travels more efficiently, and therefore more quickly, when senders use the...

 of 17331-34. Hanover is named after the German city of Hannover.


Hanover is located at 39°48′26"N 76°59′5"W (39.807297, -76.984747). Hanover is 5 miles (8 km) north of the Mason-Dixon line
Mason-Dixon line
The Mason–Dixon Line was surveyed between 1763 and 1767 by Charles Mason and Jeremiah Dixon in the resolution of a border dispute between British colonies in Colonial America. It forms a demarcation line among four U.S. states, forming part of the borders of Pennsylvania, Maryland, Delaware, and...


According to the United States Census Bureau
United States Census Bureau
The United States Census Bureau is the government agency that is responsible for the United States Census. It also gathers other national demographic and economic data...

, the borough has a total area of 3.7 square miles (9.6 km²), all land.


Hanover was settled in about 1730 and incorporated in 1815.

In 1727, John Digges, an Irish nobleman of Prince George's County, Maryland, obtained a grant of 10000 acres (40.5 km²) of land where Hanover is now located from Charles Calvert, the fourth Lord Baltimore. The area was called Digges Choice, and in 1730, a group of Catholics started the settlement that became known as the Conewego Settlement. Settlers from both Maryland and Pennsylvania began moving into the area in the 1730s. At this time, the northern border of Maryland and the southern border of Pennsylvania did not agree with each other, and the area that is now Hanover was in the disputed area claimed by both states. This led to numerous disputes about property ownership from the 1730s until 1760. The dispute was settled when Maryland and Pennsylvania hired British experts Charles Mason and Jeremiah Dixon to survey what became known as the Mason–Dixon Line. This line was surveyed between 1763 and 1767, and put an end to decades of disputes over rights and ownership.

In 1745, a Scotch-Irishman named Richard McAllister purchased the tract of land upon which the original town of Hanover was built. McAllister was a Presbyterian who had recently migrated from the Cumberland Valley. Hanover at that time was covered with a dense forest of hickory, walnut, and oak trees. McAllister erected a log house at what is now the corner of Baltimore and Middle streets, and opened a store and tavern. In 1763, McAllister divided his farm into lots and founded the town of Hanover. German settlers nicknamed the settlement "Hickory Town" after the thick groves of hickory trees that grew in the area. The name Hanover was suggested by Michael Tanner, who was one of the commissioners who laid out York County in 1749 and owned large tracts of land southeast of the town. Tanner's choice of the name came from the fact that he was a native of Hanover, Germany. The town's founders, who wanted to please the German settlers, agreed to the name. Hanover was also sometimes referred to as McAllister's Town in its early years.

Thomas Jefferson
Thomas Jefferson
Thomas Jefferson was the principal author of the United States Declaration of Independence and the Statute of Virginia for Religious Freedom , the third President of the United States and founder of the University of Virginia...

 spent the night of April 12, 1776 at the Sign of the Horse, an inn owned by Caspar Reinecker on Frederick Street. Records indicate that Jefferson paid "Rhenegher" 11 shillings, 6 pence for dinner and lodging. He was on his way from Monticello to Philadelphia to attend the first meeting of the Continental Congress, where on June 10 he would begin the draft the Declaration of Independence. At the time, Hanover was located at the crossing of two well-traveled roads, one from the port of Baltimore to points north and west and the other between Philadelphia and the Valley of Virginia. When Jefferson returned from Philadelphia to Monticello, he again dined and spent the night of September 5 at Reinecker's inn.

Hanover's first newspaper, Die Pennsylvania Wochenschrift, was published in German in 1797. In 1805, the "Hanover Gazette" followed suit, also published in German.

At the start of the Revolutionary War
American Revolutionary War
The American Revolutionary War , the American War of Independence, or simply the Revolutionary War, began as a war between the Kingdom of Great Britain and thirteen British colonies in North America, and ended in a global war between several European great powers.The war was the result of the...

, Hanover consisted of about 500 homes, most of which were built out of logs. After the war, the population increased steadily until the War of 1812
War of 1812
The War of 1812 was a military conflict fought between the forces of the United States of America and those of the British Empire. The Americans declared war in 1812 for several reasons, including trade restrictions because of Britain's ongoing war with France, impressment of American merchant...

. After the War of 1812 the town experienced only minor growth until 1852, when construction of the Hanover Branch Railroad
Hanover Branch Railroad
The Hanover Branch Railroad Company was a railroad that operated in Pennsylvania in the mid-19th century. The company was incorporated on March 16, 1847 and began operating trains in 1852...

 to Hanover Junction
Hanover Junction, Pennsylvania
Hanover Junction is a small unincorporated community in south-central York County, Pennsylvania, United States, near the borough of Seven Valleys...

 was completed. In 1858 the Gettysburg Railroad
Gettysburg Railroad
The Gettysburg Railroad was a railway line in Pennsylvania that operated from 1858-1870 over the 17 mile main line from the terminus in Gettysburg to the 1849 Hanover Junction...

 opened a railroad link westward to Gettysburg
Gettysburg, Pennsylvania
Gettysburg is a borough that is the county seat, part of the Gettysburg Battlefield, and the eponym for the 1863 Battle of Gettysburg. The town hosts visitors to the Gettysburg National Military Park and has 3 institutions of higher learning: Lutheran Theological Seminary, Gettysburg College, and...

. The Hanover and York Railroad completed a rail line to York
York, Pennsylvania
York, known as the White Rose City , is a city located in York County, Pennsylvania, United States which is in the South Central region of the state. The population within the city limits was 43,718 at the 2010 census, which was a 7.0% increase from the 2000 count of 40,862...

 in 1876.

During the American Civil War
American Civil War
The American Civil War was a civil war fought in the United States of America. In response to the election of Abraham Lincoln as President of the United States, 11 southern slave states declared their secession from the United States and formed the Confederate States of America ; the other 25...

, the Battle of Hanover
Battle of Hanover
The Battle of Hanover took place on June 30, 1863, in Hanover in southwestern York County, Pennsylvania, as part of the Gettysburg Campaign of the American Civil War....

 was fought on June 30, 1863. Union
Union Army
The Union Army was the land force that fought for the Union during the American Civil War. It was also known as the Federal Army, the U.S. Army, the Northern Army and the National Army...

Cavalry or horsemen were soldiers or warriors who fought mounted on horseback. Cavalry were historically the third oldest and the most mobile of the combat arms...

 under Judson Kilpatrick
Hugh Judson Kilpatrick
Hugh Judson Kilpatrick was an officer in the Union Army during the American Civil War, achieving the rank of brevet major general. He was later the United States Minister to Chile, and a failed political candidate for the U.S...

 encountered Confederate
Confederate States of America
The Confederate States of America was a government set up from 1861 to 1865 by 11 Southern slave states of the United States of America that had declared their secession from the U.S...

 cavalry under J.E.B. Stuart
J.E.B. Stuart
James Ewell Brown "Jeb" Stuart was a U.S. Army officer from Virginia and a Confederate States Army general during the American Civil War. He was known to his friends as "Jeb", from the initials of his given names. Stuart was a cavalry commander known for his mastery of reconnaissance and the use...

 and a sharp fight ensued in the town and in farm fields to the south, particularly along Frederick Street. The inconclusive battle delayed the Confederate cavalry on their way to the Battle of Gettysburg
Battle of Gettysburg
The Battle of Gettysburg , was fought July 1–3, 1863, in and around the town of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania. The battle with the largest number of casualties in the American Civil War, it is often described as the war's turning point. Union Maj. Gen. George Gordon Meade's Army of the Potomac...

. Three days before the battle, another detachment of Virginia
The Commonwealth of Virginia , is a U.S. state on the Atlantic Coast of the Southern United States. Virginia is nicknamed the "Old Dominion" and sometimes the "Mother of Presidents" after the eight U.S. presidents born there...

 cavalry had briefly occupied Hanover, collecting supplies and horses from local citizens.

Over the years, its industries have included the making of cigars, gloves, silk
Silk is a natural protein fiber, some forms of which can be woven into textiles. The best-known type of silk is obtained from the cocoons of the larvae of the mulberry silkworm Bombyx mori reared in captivity...

s, flavine, water wheel
Water wheel
A water wheel is a machine for converting the energy of free-flowing or falling water into useful forms of power. A water wheel consists of a large wooden or metal wheel, with a number of blades or buckets arranged on the outside rim forming the driving surface...

s, flour
Flour is a powder which is made by grinding cereal grains, other seeds or roots . It is the main ingredient of bread, which is a staple food for many cultures, making the availability of adequate supplies of flour a major economic and political issue at various times throughout history...

, shirts, shoes, machine-shop products, furniture
Furniture is the mass noun for the movable objects intended to support various human activities such as seating and sleeping in beds, to hold objects at a convenient height for work using horizontal surfaces above the ground, or to store things...

, wire cloth, and ironstone grinders.

The town has lent its name to a brand of canned vegetables, and a mail-order gift company based there.


As of the census
A census is the procedure of systematically acquiring and recording information about the members of a given population. It is a regularly occurring and official count of a particular population. The term is used mostly in connection with national population and housing censuses; other common...

of 2000, there were 14,535 people, 6,605 households, and 3,817 families residing in the borough. The population density
Population density
Population density is a measurement of population per unit area or unit volume. It is frequently applied to living organisms, and particularly to humans...

 was 3,981.7 inhabitants per square mile (1,537.5/km²). There were 6,982 housing units at an average density of 1,912.6 per square mile (738.6/km²). The racial makeup of the borough was 96.95% White, 0.52% African American, 0.19% Native American, 0.87% Asian, 0.06% Pacific Islander, 0.74% from other races
Race (United States Census)
Race and ethnicity in the United States Census, as defined by the Federal Office of Management and Budget and the United States Census Bureau, are self-identification data items in which residents choose the race or races with which they most closely identify, and indicate whether or not they are...

, and 0.68% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.05% of the population. The ancestries for Hanover include: German (42%), Irish (11%), United States (10%), English (8%), Italian (3%), and Dutch (2%).

There were 6,605 households out of which 23.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 44.6% were married couples
Marriage is a social union or legal contract between people that creates kinship. It is an institution in which interpersonal relationships, usually intimate and sexual, are acknowledged in a variety of ways, depending on the culture or subculture in which it is found...

 living together, 9.4% had a female householder with no husband present, and 42.2% were non-families. 36.3% of all households were made up of individuals and 16.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.16 and the average family size was 2.81.

In the borough the population was spread out with 20.1% under the age of 18, 8.0% from 18 to 24, 28.0% from 25 to 44, 22.6% from 45 to 64, and 21.2% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 40 years. For every 100 females there were 91.4 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 87.5 males.

The median income for a household in the borough was $35,536, and the median income for a family was $45,156. Males had a median income of $31,206 versus $21,512 for females. The per capita income
Per capita income
Per capita income or income per person is a measure of mean income within an economic aggregate, such as a country or city. It is calculated by taking a measure of all sources of income in the aggregate and dividing it by the total population...

 for the borough was $20,516. About 4.5% of families and 7.7% of the population were below the poverty line, including 8.7% of those under age 18 and 6.4% of those age 65 or over.

The Greater Hanover area has a population of about 55,000 residents. The community is made up of several areas such as Hanover Borough, Penn Township
Penn Township, York County, Pennsylvania
Penn Township is a township in York County, Pennsylvania, United States. The population was 15,612 at the 2010 census.-Geography:According to the United States Census Bureau, the township has a total area of , of which is land and , or 1.16%, is water...

, Heidlberg Township
Penn Township, York County, Pennsylvania
Penn Township is a township in York County, Pennsylvania, United States. The population was 15,612 at the 2010 census.-Geography:According to the United States Census Bureau, the township has a total area of , of which is land and , or 1.16%, is water...

, Manheim Township
Manheim Township, York County, Pennsylvania
Manheim Township is a township in York County, Pennsylvania, United States. As of the 2010 census, the township population was 3,380.-Geography:...

, West Manheim Township, Conewago Township
Conewago Township, Adams County, Pennsylvania
Conewago Township is a township in Adams County, Pennsylvania, United States. The population was 5,709 at the 2000 census.-Geography:According to the United States Census Bureau, the township has a total area of , of which, of it is land and of it is water.-Demographics:As of the census of 2000,...

, Berwick Township, and Union Township. All of these areas have Hanover, PA listed as their address.

Hanover, Pennsylvania is known by many as the snack food capital of the United States. Hanover has been featured multiple times on the Food Network. It is home to Utz's Quality Foods and Snyder's of Hanover and in nearby areas there are others including Wolfgang Candy, Martin's Potato Chips, Hershey Foods, and Gibbles Potato Chips, among others. Most of these factories give free tours.

Retail areas

Hanover is the seventh largest retail area in the state of Pennsylvania.

Pretzel company Snyder's of Hanover
Snyder's of Hanover
Snyder's of Hanover is a bakery and snack food distribution company based in Hanover, Pennsylvania, specializing in pretzels. Snyder's of Hanover is the #1 pretzel company in the United States , and also the global leader in pretzel sales. Snyder's of Hanover is the #2 salty snack foods company...

 is located in its namesake town.

A major retail area in the greater Hanover region is along Eisenhower Drive, known as "The Golden Mile." This four lane road stretches east to the intersection at Eisenhower Drive and Broadway (Route 194) and west to the intersection at Eisenhower Drive and Carlisle Street (Route 94). Some of the major retail businesses on "The Golden Mile" includes Wal-Mart Supercenter, Arbys, AC Moore
AC Moore
A.C. Moore is an arts and crafts retail chain with 132 locations in the eastern United States, with its corporate headquarters in located in Berlin, New Jersey. AC Moore sells a variety of arts and crafts products, including scrapbooking, beading, knitting, rubber stamping, home decor items,...

, Game Crazy, TJ Maxx, La Cucina, M&T Bank (2 locations), Best Wok, The Home Depot
The Home Depot
The Home Depot is an American retailer of home improvement and construction products and services.The Home Depot operates 2,248 big-box format stores across the United States , Canada , Mexico and China, with a 12-store chain...

, Kohls, Staples, Texas Roadhouse, Ruby Tuesdays, Perkins, The Bon Ton, Dunkin Donuts, Red Lobster
Red Lobster
Red Lobster is a U.S. chain of seafood restaurants. It also operates in Canada, the UAE and Japan . It is aimed at the mid-level "casual dining" segment of the market...

, Lowe's
Lowe's Companies, Inc. is a U.S.-based chain of retail home improvement and appliance stores. Founded in 1946 in North Wilkesboro, North Carolina, the chain now serves more than 14 million customers a week in its 1,710 stores in the United States and 20 in Canada. Expansion into Canada began in...

, Giant Foods, R.C. Hanover Movies 16, McDonalds, Chilis, Wendy's, and Sonic America's Drive In.


The Hanover area is served fully by two school districts, partially by third, and has one private high school. The Hanover Public School District serves Hanover Borough and has five schools:
  • Clearview Elementary School
  • Hanover Street Elementary School
  • Washington Elementary School
  • Hanover Middle School
  • Hanover High School

The South Western School District serves the area around Hanover Borough, which includes Penn Township, Manheim Township, and West Manheim Township. This district has six schools:
  • Baresville Elementary School
  • Manheim Elementary School
  • Park Hills Elementary School
  • West Manheim Elementary School
  • Emory H. Markle Intermediate School (middle school)
  • South Western High School

Conewago Township is served by Conewago Township Elementary School, which is part of the Conewago Valley School District in adjacent Adams County.

The private high school is Delone Catholic High School is in adjacent McSherrystown, PA.

Despite the Hanover area's size, there are no colleges. However, the Empire Beauty School has a campus in Hanover, and the Practical Nursing Program has classrooms at Hanover High School. HACC and York College
York College of Pennsylvania
York College of Pennsylvania is a private, coeducational, 4-year college located in southcentral Pennsylvania. The school offers more than 50 baccalaureate majors in professional programs, the sciences, and humanities to its 4,600 undergraduate students...

 also offer classes at Hanover and South Western high schools. Penn State's York Campus also offers select classes in the Hanover area.

Places of interest

Some local places of interest in the Hanover area include:
  • Hanover Shoe Company - A large shoe factory from 1910, now converted into apartments.
  • Hanover Farmer's Market - since 1815
  • Lincoln Speedway
  • Hanover Theater - built 1928
  • Eichelberger Performing Arts Center
  • Guthrie Memorial Library, Hanover's Public Library
  • Trail-Ways Speedway——a local auto race track for sprint car
    Sprint car racing
    Sprint cars are high-powered race cars designed primarily for the purpose of running on short oval or circular dirt or paved tracks. Sprint car racing is popular in the United States, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa....

    , stock car, and other types of car races
  • Utz
    Utz Quality Foods, Inc.
    Utz Quality Foods, Inc. , based in Hanover, Pennsylvania, is the largest independent privately held snack brand in the United States. The company was founded in 1921 and distributes a variety of potato chips and other snack foods throughout the United States....

     potato chip
    Potato chip
    Potato chips are thin slices of potato that are deep fried...

  • Codorus State Park
    Codorus State Park
    Codorus State Park is a Pennsylvania state park in Heidelberg, Manheim, Penn, and West Manheim Townships in southwestern York County, Pennsylvania in the United States. The park was created around Lake Marburg, an artificial lake covering , and is named for Codorus Creek, which forms the lake...

    ——has a large artificial lake
    A reservoir , artificial lake or dam is used to store water.Reservoirs may be created in river valleys by the construction of a dam or may be built by excavation in the ground or by conventional construction techniques such as brickwork or cast concrete.The term reservoir may also be used to...

    , pontoon boat rentals, motor boat rentals, canoe rentals, row boat rentals, paddle boats, disc golf courses, and one of the largest pools
    Swimming pool
    A swimming pool, swimming bath, wading pool, or simply a pool, is a container filled with water intended for swimming or water-based recreation. There are many standard sizes; the largest is the Olympic-size swimming pool...

     in the state of Pennsylvania
  • North Hanover Mall
  • Snyder's of Hanover
    Snyder's of Hanover
    Snyder's of Hanover is a bakery and snack food distribution company based in Hanover, Pennsylvania, specializing in pretzels. Snyder's of Hanover is the #1 pretzel company in the United States , and also the global leader in pretzel sales. Snyder's of Hanover is the #2 salty snack foods company...

  • Link's Music, established in 1981, has the largest showroom of PA, lighting, drums, guitars, guitar and bass amplifiers, and DJ equipment in York, Adams, and Carroll Counties.
  • Sheppard Mansion
  • EMECO Chair Factory - Manufactures the famous Emeco 1006
    Emeco 1006
    The Emeco 1006 chair, also called the Navy chair, is an aluminum chair produced by the Electric Machine and Equipment Company in Hanover, Pennsylvania, USA....


The Hanover area is served by Pennsylvania Routes 94
Pennsylvania Route 94
Pennsylvania Route 94 is a 29 mile long north–south state highway located in southern Pennsylvania. The southern terminus of the route is at the Mason-Dixon Line, where PA 94 continues into Maryland as Maryland Route 30...

, 194
Pennsylvania Route 194
Pennsylvania Route 194 is a long north–south state highway located in south-central Pennsylvania. The southern end is at the Maryland State Line and the northern terminus is at the intersection with PA 74 in the town of Dillsburg.-Route description:PA 194 begins at the Maryland border in...

, 116
Pennsylvania Route 116
Pennsylvania Route 116 is an east–west route located in southern Pennsylvania. The route begins at Pennsylvania Route 16 in Carroll Valley north of the Pennsylvania-Maryland state line. It passes through the historic Civil War town of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania in Adams County, intersecting U.S...

, and 216
Pennsylvania Route 216
Pennsylvania Route 216 is an long state highway located in York county in Pennsylvania. The western terminus is at PA 116 in Hanover. The eastern terminus is at PA 24 in Winterstown.-Route description:...

. Route 94 (Carlisle Street/Pike and Baltimore Street/Pike) intersects with Route 194 at the square and extends north to Carlisle, PA and south to Baltimore, MD. Route 194 (Broadway/Abbottstown Pike and Frederick Street/Hanover Pike) intersects with Route 94 and Route 116 at the square and extends north to Dillsburg, PA and south to Frederick, MD. Route 116 (York Street/Road and High Street/Hanover Road) overlaps Route 194 and runs through the square for three blocks. It extends west to McSherrystown, PA and east to Spring Grove, PA. Route 216 (Blooming Grove Road) branches southwest off of Route 116 and runs through Codorus State Park
Codorus State Park
Codorus State Park is a Pennsylvania state park in Heidelberg, Manheim, Penn, and West Manheim Townships in southwestern York County, Pennsylvania in the United States. The park was created around Lake Marburg, an artificial lake covering , and is named for Codorus Creek, which forms the lake...


Hanover is served by 4 routes of the Rabbit Transit
Rabbit Transit (York)
Rabbit Transit is the mass transit service of York County, Pennsylvania. The agency currently operates 15 fixed routes within York County and express bus routes from Gettysburg to Harrisburg and from York to Harrisburg and Towson, Maryland .The agency, which...

 bus system. Route #16 connects Downtown Hanover to Downtown York. An unnumbered route transports employees from York to Hanover. Route #21 connects Downtown Hanover with North Hanover and the Homewood Retirement Village. Route #22 connects Downtown Hanover with North Hanover and South Hanover.

Special Interest Groups

Music groups


The bowling scene in the movie Girl, Interrupted
Girl, Interrupted (film)
Girl, Interrupted is a 1999 drama film about a teenager's 18-month stay at a mental institution, starring Winona Ryder, Brittany Murphy, Angelina Jolie, Whoopi Goldberg and Vanessa Redgrave, with Jolie winning an Academy Award for her performance....

was filmed in the basement of the Sheppard Mansion. The mansion and its twin, Myers Mansion, across town both still have bowling alleys in their basements.

External links