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  • During the height of the American Revolution in the summer of 1780, British sympathizers, also known as Tories, concentrated from New York's Mohawk Valley, began attacking Patriot (American Revolution)patriot outposts located along the Susquehanna River Valley in Northeast Pennsylvania. Because of the reports of Tory activity in the region, Captain Daniel Klader and a platoon of 41 men from Northampton County, Pennsylvania were sent to investigate. They traveled north from the Lehigh Valley along a path known as "Warrior's Trail", which is present-day State Route 93, since this route connects the Lehigh River in Jim Thorpe, Pennsylvania (formerly known as Mauch Chunk) to the Susquehanna River in Berwick, Pennsylvania. Heading north, Captain Klader's men made it as far north as present-day Conyngham, PAConyngham, Pennsylvania when they were ambushed by members of the Seneca tribe and Tory militiamen. In all, 15 men were killed on September 11, 1780 in what was to become the Sugarloaf Massacre. The Moravians (religion)Moravians, a Christian Religious denominationdenomination, had been using "Warrior's Trail" since the early 1700s after the Moravian missionary Nicolaus Ludwig Zinzendorf first used it to reach the Wyoming Valley. This particular stretch of "Warrior Trail" had many hazel trees growing and the Moravian missionaries are credited with giving the area its first name, "Hazel Swamp". The Moravian missionaries were sent from their settlements near Bethlehem, Pennsylvania to the site of the Sugarloaf Massacre to bury the dead soldiers. Because of the aesthetic natural beauty of the Conyngham Valley, some Moravians decided to stay and built a settlement along the Nescopeck Creek, which is present-day St. Johns, near the intersection of Interstate 80Interstates 80 and Interstate 8181. In the late 1700s and early 1800s, the "Warrior Trail" was widened and became the Berwick Turnpike. Later, a road was built to connect Wilkes-Barre from McKeansburg, PAMcKeansburg, Pennsylvania. The road headed north to Wilkes-Barre intersected with the Berwick Turnpike at what is present-day Broad and Vine Streets, in downtown Hazleton. An entrepreneur named Jacob Drumheller decided that this intersection was the perfect location for a rest-stop, so in 1809, he built the first building in what would be later known as Hazleton. Though a few buildings and houses began to be built nearby, the area remained a dense wilderness for about 20 more years. Aside from small-scale logging, the area offered little else. Railroad developers from Philadelphia became interested in the Hazleton area once previous rumors were validated that anthracite coal had been discovered in near-by Beaver Meadows by prospectors Nathaniel Beach and Tench Coxe. A young engineer from New yorkNew York named Ario Pardee was hired to survey the topography of Beaver Meadows and report the practicality of extending a railroad from the Lehigh River Canal in Jim Thorpe to Beaver Meadows. Pardee, knowing that the area of Beaver Meadows was already controlled by Coxe and Beach, bought many acres of the land in present-day Hazleton. The investment proved to be extraordinarily lucrative. The land contained part of a massive anthricite coal field. The coal mined in Hazleton helped to establish the United statesUnited States as a world industrial power, primarily fueling the massive blast furnaces at the Bethlehem SteelBethlehem Steel Corporation. The Hazleton Coal Company was incorporated in 1836 the same year that the rail link to the Lehigh Valley market was about to be completed. The Hazleton Coal Company built the first school on Church Street, where Hazleton City Hall is now located. Pardee also built the first church in Hazleton located at Church and Broad Streets. The Parde mansion was built on the northern block of Broad Street, between present-day Church and Laurel Streets. Hazleton was incorporated as a borough on January 5, 1857. Its intended name was supposed to be spelled "Hazelton" but a clerk misspelled the name during incorporation, and the name "Hazleton" has been used ever since. The borough's first fire company, the Pioneer Fire Company, was organized in 1867 by soldiers returning from the American Civil War. Eastern European immigrants contributed to the massive growth Hazleton experienced near the end of the century. Hazleton was incorporated as a city on December 4, 1891. The population then was estimated to be around 14,000 people. In 1891, Hazleton became the third city in the United States to establish a city-wide electic grid. On September 10, 1897, the Lattimer Massacre occurred near Hazleton. Readily available, cheap energy helped open the door for manufacturing. The Duplan Silk Corporation opened and became the world's largest silk mill. The garment industry thrived, some operations serving as a front for mafia boss Albert Anastasia. Later in the 20th century the area's business development was faclitated by CANDO (Community Area New Development Organization) which was formally organized in 1956 by founder Dr. Edgar L. Dessen. Hazleton's economy is now based largely on manufacturing and shipping, faciltated by the relative closeness to Interstate 80Interstates 80 and Interstate 8181. Hazleton is nicknamed "The Mountain City" because of its elevation around 1700 feet above sea level, much higher than other cities in the area (for example, the city of Wilkes-Barre, about 25 miles away, is about 1000 feet lower in elevation). The campus of Penn State Hazleton is also in Hazleton. Other notable commercial interests include one of the largest offices of Primerica. a division of Citigroup. Just north of the city at the CANDO complex at the intersection of PA-309 and Interstate 80 is the US customer service call center of Network Solutions, a major Internet domain name registrar. One of the largest Wal-Mart Supercenters in the US is found along Airport Road. Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hazleton%2C_Pennsylvania

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