Columbia, Pennsylvania

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Columbia, once colonial Wright's Ferry, is a borough in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, 28 miles (45 km) southeast of Harrisburg on the left (east) bank Susquehanna River across from Wrightsville and York County. Originally, the area may have been called Conejohela Flats, for the many islands and islets in the nearby river. The settlement was founded in 1726 by Colonial English Quakers from Chester County led by John Wright who'd been visiting the region evangelizing among the natives since 1724, many of whom gradually adopted Christianity. The settlement, which began with three family's grew slowly until Wright established the first ferry across the Susquehanna, "Wright's Ferry" in 1730 — enabling a vast increase in traffic to the west (right) bank — and giving a name to the community which then began to rapidly grow into a town, with its employment specialized around water craft exploitation and standard fundamental colonial cottage industries.

Population counts were these: in 1890, 10,199; in 1900, 12,316; in 1910, 11,454; in 1920, 10,836; and in 1940, 11,547. The population was 10,311 at the 2000 census.


General information

  • ZIP code: 17512
  • Area code: 717
  • Schools: Taylor Elementary School, Park Elementary School, Our Lady of The Angels and Columbia Jr./Sr. High School

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