Sewickley in a Hurry

Sewickley Valley:

Traditional name for land extending from Glenfield to Beaver County line at Big Sewickley Creek.


Quaker Valley:

A designation that arose during the 1960s when the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania mandated larger school districts. The name is a compromise that harks back to the Quaker roots of one of the pioneer families - the Ways - and the fact that there was at one time a railroad station called Quaker Valley. Quaker Valley station was located at the foot of Academy Avenue on the property of the Way Family.


The Name Sewickley:

Citizens of the town met to consider a name for their town in 1840, choosing the name Sewickleyville over Fifetown, Contention, Devil's Race Track and Dogtown. The town was incorporated as Sewickley in 1853.


Name Origin:

History records a tribe of Indians called Assiwikales. Popular version is that Seweekly is an Indian name for the sap of the maple trees that were abundant in the rich virgin forest - thus, Sweetwater.


Influences On History:

  • The Great Beaver Road - Conestoga wagons, etc.
  • The Ohio River - Steamboats and river captains
  • The Railroad - Pennsylvania R. R.'s main line west, July 4, 1851
  • Migration of iron and steel families from Pittsburgh
  • Sewickley Bridge, 1911
  • Ohio River Boulevard - Opened December 15, 1934
  • Greater Pittsburgh Airport after World War II


Visitors & Residents

  • George Washington, 1753
  • Col. Bouquet, 1764
  • Gen. Anthony Wayne, 1792
  • Gen. Zachary Taylor, 1848
  • Ethelbert Nevin (1862-1901) - Native Son
  • Willa Cather - Visitor, 1900
  • William Howard Taft - Visitor
  • Mary Roberts Rinehart (1876-1958) - Resident
  • Estate Families - Jones, Laughlin, Byers, Oliver, Boggs, Buhl


Prepared by Sewickley Valley Historical Society, 2001

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The mission of the Sewickley Valley Historical Society is to promote interest in and to record, collect, preserve, and document the history of the Sewickley Valley.

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