Western PA National Memorials and Historic Sites

October 18, 2011

Friendship Hill National Historic Site is on the Monongahela River outside of New Geneva PA.   It was the home on the Western Frontier of Albert Gallatin an entrepreneur, politician, diplomat, financier, and scholar.  He was a contemporary of Jefferson, Madison and Monroe and was as well-known during that period as those three Presidents.  He was U.S. Secretary of the Treasury and developed the plan for the Louisiana Purchase.

Fort Ligonier (1758-1766) was a British Fort during the French and Indian War, which in turn was part of the Seven Years War globally.  It was a staging and supply depot for the British-American army to take Fort Duquesne (now Pittsburgh).  George Washington served here for a while.  It is run by a private non-profit organization.  They have a very good/informative museum.

Flight 93 National Memorial is outside of Shanksville PA and marks the crash site of the United Airlines flight that was hijacked by terrorists on 9/11/2001 and was heading for Washington DC.  Passengers formulated a plan and attacked the terrorists resulting in a six minute struggle and the fatal crash.  The plane was only 18 minutes
flying time from DC when it went down.  The memorial is a moving tribute to those who lost their lives that day.

Johnstown Flood National Memorial is located at the site of the South Fork Dam of the Little Conemaugh River that gave way in 1889 producing a wall of water that destroyed everything in its path on its 14 mile journey to and through Johnstown PA.  Over 2,200 people were killed!

Allegheny Portage Railroad National Historic Site is located at the Cresson Summit of the Allegheny Mountains between Hollidaysburg and Johnstown PA.  The
incline railway had five inclines on the east and five inclines on the west of the summit.  It was operational from 1834 to 1857 to carry canal boats over the mountains for a trade route from Philadelphia to Pittsburgh.

The Lemon House served as a home, tavern, and business at the summit.  The other building is a recreation of the engine house that controlled the cables of incline 6.

The Skew Arch, about half a mile east of the summit, allowed both the railroad and road above it to maintain a straight line.

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