Blair County PAGenWeb


Blair County PAGenWeb






Blair County History


Blair County, Pennsylvania, is in the beautiful and far-famed Juniata valley, and lies between the forty-first and forty-second degrees north latitude; and the seventy-eighth and seventy-ninth degrees west longitude from Greenwich, England, or the first and second degrees west longitude from Washington city. As a political division of the State, it is bounded on the north by Centre and Clearfield counties; on the east by Huntingdon county; on the south by Bedford county; and on the west by Cambria county. Of the sixty-seven counties of the State, in order of age, it is the fifty-ninth; in order of alphabetical designation, the seventh; and in population ranks nineteenth. In geographical position Blair county is one of the south central counties of the State, while its geographical center and center of population are not far apart, and both are located in Frankstown township, a few miles north-east of Hollidaysburg. Blair county has an estimated area of five hundred and ten square miles by Small's legislative hand book of 1888, and five hundred and ninety-four square miles, or 380,160 acres, by the second geological survey of Pennsylvania; was named for Hon. John Blair, a worthy man and public-spirited citizen; and is one of the rich mineral counties of Pennsylvania.


Territorial Changes. - The present territory of Blair county was a part of the following counties for the respective times specified:


Chester, from 1682 to May 10, 1729.


Lancaster, May 10, 1729, to January 27, 1750.


Cumberland, January 27, 1750, to March 9, 1771, and under which county, in 1767, was organized as a part of Bedford and Barre townships.


Bedford, March 9, 1771, to September 26, 1787, and under which county, in 1775, was included in Frankstown township.


Huntingdon and Bedford, September 20, 1787, to February 26, 1846, the former including all of Blair, except the territory of North Woodbury and Greenfield townships.


Biographical & Portrait Cyclopedia of Blair County, Samuel T. Wiley, 1892



Blair County was erected from parts of Huntingdon and Bedford Counties in 1846.


Township formed from this township in this county
Allegheny 1846 Frankstown Huntingdon
Antis 1846 Allegheny Huntingdon
Blair 1846 Frankstown Huntingdon
Catharine 1846 Morris Huntingdon
Frankstown 1846 Frankstown Huntingdon
Freedom 1857 Juniata Blair
Greenfield 1846 Greenfield Bedford
Huston 1846 Woodberry Huntingdon
Juniata 1847 Greenfield Blair
Logan 1850 Antis & Allegheny Blair
North Woodberry 1846 North Woodberry Bedford
Snyder 1846 Snyder Huntingdon
Taylor 1855 Huston & North Woodberry Blair
Tyrone 1846 Tyrone Huntingdon
Woodberry 1846 Woodberry Huntingdon


Above chart made from data in J. Simpson Africa's History of Blair County, 1883



Links to History


Extinct Iron Furnaces and Forges


A History of Blair County, Pennsylvania

Under Editorial Supervision of Tarring S. Davis

Lucile Shenk, Associate Editor

Harrisburg: National Historical Association, Inc., 1931


Free, searchable downloads at :


Guide to Genealogical and Historical Research in Pennsylvania,
Floyd G. Hoenstine, Hollidaysburg, Pa., 1958


Know Your Blair County, James E. Butts & Paul Kurtz  Altoona: Blair County Commissioners


History of the City of Altoona and Blair County

James H. Ewing & Harry Slep

Altoona: Altoona Mirror Printing Co., 1880


History of the Early Settlement of the Juniata Valley
Uriah James Jones, 1889


History of Huntingdon and Blair Counties, Pennsylvania

J. Simpson Africa

Philadelphia: Louis H. Everts, 1883


A History of Blair County, Pennsylvania. From its earliest settlement, and more particularly from its organization, in 1846 to June 1896.

Charles B. Clark

Altoona: C. B. Clark, 1896


Illustrated Altoona

Altoona, Pa.: Board of Trade, 1896


Twentieth Century History of Altoona and Blair County and Representative Citizens.
Jesse C. Sell, 1911

Free download at PSU Digital Collections:

Blair County's First Hundred Years, 1846-1946  George A. Wolf, Editor in Chief.  Altoona, Pa.: The Mirror, Press, 1945.


Military Services and Genealogical Records of Soldiers of Blair County, Pennsylvania, by Floyd G. Hoenstine.  Hollidaysburg, Pa.; Harrisburg, Pa.: The Telegraph Press, 1940.




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