Mount Pleasant, Pennsylvania

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Mount Pleasant is a borough in Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania, in the United States. It stands 45 miles (72 km) southeast of Pittsburgh. Population in 1900, 4,745 people; in 1910, 5,812 people; and in 1940, 5,824 people. As of the 2000 census, the borough population was 4,728.

The Borough of Mount Pleasant, consisting of the town area, should not be confused with Mount Pleasant Township, which is an entirely separate municipality. Mount Pleasant Township is predominantly rural and adjoins the borough to the north.

In the past, Mount Pleasant was a center of an extensive coke-making industry. Other products included flour, lumber, iron, glass, foundry products, etc.

Contents

History

The year of Mount Pleasant's first non-Indian resident is not known, although one source states that at the time of the American Revolutionary War, there was a settlement of "not more than a half dozen houses."[1] Braddock Road (Braddock expedition) passed through the western end of the future town in 1755, opening the area to settlement. In 1793 Michael Smith was licensed to operate an inn, which would have served traffic on Glades Road (sometimes spelled Glade Road), now Route 31.[1] In 1797, Nathaniel Marshall sold land to Andrew McCready, who laid out the design of the town.[1]

Unfortunately, no pre-1800 structures remain within the borough limits. The borough’s three oldest existing buildings all date from approximately 1812: The Shupe House at 201 Main Street, Hitchman House at 355 Main Street, and the Rupert Building at 642-644 Main Street.[2]

Mount Pleasant became a borough on February 7, 1828.

Glass manufacturing was a foundation of the local economy, with Bryce Brothers commencing operations in 1850, and L. E. Smith Glass in 1907. The invention of the Bessemer process of steelmaking in 1859, which required coke (fuel), had a dramatic impact on the region.[2] The town prospered as coal deposits were developed, from which coke was made. However, the lives of coal miners in the outlying "patch towns" (company-owned mining towns) were arduous, and labor-management disputes became frequent. The 1891 strike in Morewood, west of Mount Pleasant borough, was the most violent of the area’s strikes, in which seven miners were killed by sheriff’s deputies.[3][4]

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