Your Home of Hatboro, Pennsylvania
In 1715, John Dawson, a hatter from England, came to Hatboro, and built a house that later became the Crooked Billet Inn. The small village was at that time called the Billet. The Billet became known as Hatborough in 1740. Learn more about this great community and find your dream home below.
In the 1750's, Hatboro was a farming village of a scant fifteen houses on the Old York Road. York Road, a former Indian trail, was the stage coach route between Philadelphia and New York. A mill, a tavern, a tannery, a saddlery and a furniture maker were the main businesses. Most business was carried on by the barter of goods and services. There was no church and only a small school.
In spite of the small size of the community, the education of its occupants was deemed to be of primary importance.
Historic Locations and Education
The Union Library Company was formed in 1755. An impressive list of thirty-eight people were the original subscribers! The Union Library of Hatboro is the third oldest in Pennsylvania, and the second oldest library to be operating under the original charter. The library was moved from house to house until the present building was built in 1849. The library building is on the National Register of Historic Places.
There was early schooling. In 1756, the first schoolhouse was in operation on Byberry Ave. On West Monument Avenue, Joshua Potts' log cabin school was also teaching the three R's.
The Loller Academy was a private school until 1848 , when it became the public school. The building now houses the municipal offices and is known as Borough Hall (see photo). The Isaiah Lukens clock in the tower was installed in 1812. In 1839, Isaiah Lukens made a similar clock for Independance Hall in Philadelphia. This structure is on the National Register of Historic Places.
Hatboro, PA and the Revolutionary War
Hatboro played a role in the Revolutionary War. In the summer of 1777, on the way to his Moland House headquarters, George Washington and his officers stopped for dinner at the Crooked Billet Tavern. He bought his grain from the old grist mill that is now the Old Mill Inn. It is said that hats were made in Hatboro for the Revolutionary War soldiers.
Hatboro was also the scene of a Revolutionary War skirmish, known as the Battle of Crooked Billet. The clash occurred on May 1,1778, during the British occupation of Philadelphia. The militia, commanded by General John Lacey and assigned to cut off British supplies, was encamped here. Surprised by British troops, they were defeated and driven off with heavy losses. Today there is a monument to this battle outside the Crooked Billet Elementary School.
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