Bedford (in 1900)- Bedford Borough, the county seat of Bedford County, is beautifully situated on the Raystown branch of the Juniata River, near the center of the county. Owing to the elevated position of the town and its being surrounded by mountains, the location is most healthful, the drainage excellent, the air invigorating and the water unsurpassed. The scenery from various points in and about the town is extensive, varied and beautiful. The principal attractions are the mineral springs which with the features already named, have, for years past, given old Bedford the prominence she enjoys as a summer resort. Bedford, however, is richer in past history than in present enterprise. Having already passed her one hundredth mile stone, the recital of her earlier years would require much more time and space than can be here given; a few facts however are necessary to give even an outline of her interesting record.
The first settlement at the present site of Bedford was made about 1750 when a Scotchman by name of Ray (a corruption of MacRae) built three cabins here, the village and stream both taking the name of "Raystown" which name as clung to the river ever since, but which soon gave place to the name "Pendergrass" and afterward to "Bedford" as applied to the town. The fort, about which clusters so much of tragic interest, was built
by the vanguard of Forbes�s army in 1758. It was located on the south bank of the river above the present Richard Street iron bridge.
The borough was incorporated March 13, 1795; and whilst her growth has not been rapid at any period since that time, it has at all times been gradual until it now assumes not only the dignity of its years, but that of a town of considerable size; the present population being three thousand souls.
....During the recent past the town has added much to her wealth and greatly to her appearance by a number of large and useful buildings; notably the Ridenour Block on the corner of Pitt and Juliana streets, built in 1896, the county jail on the corner of Penn and Thomas streets, built in 1895, the four-story steam flouring mill of H. H. Lysinger on north Richard Street, built in 1898, and the Barnett building on Juliana street, now
approaching completion. Our present railroad facilities are limited to the Bedford Division of the Pennsylvania Railroad which makes good connections, however, with main line service and over which is conducted a heavy trade. The borough boasts of a most excellent graded school building, eight churches, six of which are large substantial structures, two good banks, a keg factory, handle factory, two roller flouring mills, a foundry, steam laundry, shirt factory, three coach shops, six hotels, a number of boarding houses, about fifty stores, four meat markets, two good art galleries, four first class livery
stables, and all necessary smaller industries. The "Bedford Inquirer" and "Bedford Gazette" two of the oldest and best weekly newspapers in the state are here published. The "Hawkeye" lately established at this point published semi-weekly, is advancing well into the field of journalism; and a local job printing office in another part of town does considerable work. There is also a well-established high grad academy and a number of places in which private instruction is given in music and art.
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(c) Bedford County Pennsylvania Genealogy Project