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Linglestown History

Linglestown History

The Village of Linglestown (officially named “The Town of St. Thomas”), located in the heart of Dauphin County, PA, has begun preparations for the celebration of its 250th anniversary in the fall of 2015. A major facet of this celebration (known as a “Sestercentennial” ), is to have a commemorative U.S. Postal Service stamp created and issued in 2015 to honor the founding of this very early American community.


In 1765, Thomas Lingle purchased a parcel of land in what was then “Paxton Township,” so as to develop a 90-plot living, working, and studying community for newly arriving European settlers. He called his new settlement “The Town of St. Thomas,” after his namesake “St. Thomas,” the disciple. The sheepskin document on which he drew the plan for his village still exists, showing in great detail the village’s name, each of the plots, their plot numbers, and all street and alley names. The county deed recorder’s seal and record information is visible on the bottom left corner of the document.


In 1811, Mr. Lingle died and was buried in the Wenrich’s Church cemetery (now St. Thomas UCC), at the east end of the village. Soon thereafter, village and area residents began calling his village “Lingle’s town,” and the name soon took on a common, but still today unofficial usage.


As a busy crossroads community located at the base of the mountain, the village soon became the area center for commerce, civic, religious, and educational activities, much of which still exists today:

•Many businesses, schools, civic organizations, and churches quickly developed in the village.

•The square (“Market Square”) became the hub of business activity.

•St. Thomas UCC is the village’s oldest denomination, and unknown to most people, the Church of God denomination had its world beginning and first structure/cemetery in Linglestown.

•Organizations such as the fire company, the American Legion, the Women’s Club and the Garden Club began.

•Most of the buildings existing in the village today are first-generation buildings, each one being the first structure to be built on the plot. There are at least five log buildings located along “Market St.,” (now “Linglestown Rd.”).

As settlers moved north from the Susquehanna River, Linglestown became the third oldest community in Dauphin County, preceded by Middletown (1755) and Hummelstown (1762).

History

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