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Thread: Palmerton PA

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    Palmerton PA

    I spent the day up in the area of Palmerton Pennsylvania. It is up just past the Lehigh Tunnel.

    Palmerton is kind of a one street town. There is the Zinc Factory on one end of the main drag and the river on the other. The one thing I always remember is the house up on the hill. I always wondered if anyone ever fell off the front porch and straight down to their death.

    Bowmanstown, Lower Towamensing, Little Gap and Perryville, and Broadheadsville are all neighboring towns.

    Blue Mountain Ski Area (formerly Little Gap Ski Area) is located right by there too.

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    Re: Palmerton PA

    Quote Originally Posted by Green Lantern View Post
    The one thing I always remember is the house up on the hill. I always wondered if anyone ever fell off the front porch and straight down to their death.
    My son says that is the world's worst yard for a volleyball game

    It's called Marshall's Hill and I bet the view from up there is really cool. It is a 14-room mansion built by Elisha Marshall, a former Union Army brigadier general. It is claimed that neither he nor his wife (they eventually separated) ever really visited the town below their home. The home was built in 1881.
    http://memory.loc.gov/pnp/habshaer/p...s/131726pv.jpg

    Last edited by karen_s; 01-04-2008 at 07:07 PM. Reason: Fix link

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    Re: Palmerton PA

    From what I've heard I think a Dr. owns it now. They must have some view up there, and quite a few nose bleeds LOL!

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    Re: Palmerton PA

    I thought I heard that a Doctor owned it now too. I didn't know the history from it though and I thank Karen for filling me in.

    It just always amazed me, that house on the hill. Before they rehabed it I used to think that it was a haunted old mansion left up there to scare kids.

    Next time up I have to remember to take a picture.

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    Re: Palmerton PA

    Would you really want to have owned it in the mill`s heyday. All the heavy metals that contaminated the soil. Finally some vegetation growing back. There were 2 plants. East and West plants. Palmerton in the 70`s was awesome and vibrant. The mill provided excellent paying jobs and the town had a Mayberry RFD feel. Merchants along main street with stuff out on the sidewalks. Lots of people shopping.
    The came Gulf & Western, a conglomerate that bought the mills and also the one in Tennessee and the decline began. The mill provided more than zinc. Byproducts were anhydrous ammonia, aqua ammonia, sulfuric acid 66 and 99%, oleam acid and carbon dioxide.
    I think the sink holes between Bethlehem and Center Valley are a result of collapsed mine shafts from the Bingen Pa NJZ mines.
    "If I only had three words of advice, they would be, Tell the Truth. If got three more words, I'd add, all the time."
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    Re: Palmerton PA-Marshall's Mansion

    I just drove up to the mansion last Saturday (Feb. 9th). I was shocked to find it totally restored and occupied. We saw an older woman look out the window, and I told my 6 year old son that it was Mrs. Marshall's ghost. He is still asking me questions about her and the house, but I can't find any info beyond what I've seen here.

    Going back a few years, if anyone is interested...

    In 1969 I was in 4th grade. All four 4th grade classes from Parkway Manor Elementary took a series of field trips to learn about the Lehigh County area. One day we went to see Marshall's Mansion. I was absolutely fascinated and never forgot the visit. A woman who lived in the house located immediately next to the mansion came out and told us a story about the Mashall's, Mrs. Marshall's ghost, why the hill was red (dried blood), tunnels leading into town, etc. I remember her as being a pleasant person and seemed to enjoy have 60 4th graders coming to visit. As a 4th grade kid, it spooked the daylights out of me.

    I've lived in North Carolina for the last 25 years, but regularly visit family in Lehigh County, and have seen the house from a distance every few years or so. On the last visit, we took a completely unplanned excursion to the house. I told my son we were going to see a real haunted house, but we wouldn't be able to get too close because it was on a hill, and I assumed access would be blocked.

    When I saw the house, I could tell even from a distance that it had been rebuilt, and looked great! He really wanted to see it, and our friends and their son started egging me on. We drove all around that hill looking for the way up. We even wound up on the Aquashicola (sp) creek side looking up an abandoned dirt road that was dangerous to walk on, let alone drive up.

    We came back around to the Palmerton side of the hill and I just kept trying roads that lead up the hill. I kept expecting a gate, or some kind of barrier, but to our surprise we rounded a turn near the top (surrounded by old trailer homes), looked to our right, and there was the Mansion! The place looks fabulous!

    At that point, we had to drive right up to it, in order to turn around, and I felt really uncomfortable about intruding on their privacy, so we headed on down the hill.

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    Re: Palmerton PA

    Welcome Bill to TalkPa. I'm glad to hear you got to get up there.

    I know the road to get up there but like you said, because of privacy and all that I never took the ride up there. I can imagine that the view from up there must be amazing.

    One of the things I always remember going up there is spending time in Shay's while my grandfather picked up things. For some reason that just seems to stick with me. It is one of the places that seems to never change in Palmerton.

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    Re: Palmerton PA

    Welcome Bill, glad you shared that history with us!

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    Re: Palmerton PA

    Thanks for sharing Bill! I never drove up there even though I'm in Palmerton every weekend. Just chicken I guess LOL

    I do have to comment about the contamination and pollution aspects of living there - I think it's just incredible how many very old and HEALTHY people who are Palmerton natives go to my church. Surely they had to be drinking water laced with who knows what and exposed to all kinds of metal contamination, yet they are mostly fine? Guess the pollution was harder on the vegetation than on the people thank goodness.

    Shay's is a definite blast from the past - and they are always so helpful when I go in there.

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    Re: Palmerton PA

    It's all that Zinc those old folks have. Isn't that what is in Coldeze and Zicam? Zinc?

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    Re: Palmerton PA

    Quote Originally Posted by Green Lantern View Post
    It's all that Zinc those old folks have. Isn't that what is in Coldeze and Zicam? Zinc?
    Yes, LOL. Maybe it does help? When I started to know folks in that area I was just amazed at the longevity so close to a Superfund site, KWIM?

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    Re: Palmerton PA

    We recently visited my wifes aunt and uncle in palmerton, as we were coming into the town, I was amazed by the house on the hill. Her aunt was pretty accurate when she told me it had been owned by a general. When I was leaving I stopped and took a couple of pictures from the main road and one of them is almost a color duplicate of the picture in B&W from many years ago. I will have my wife try and post it

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    Re: Palmerton PA

    welcome to TalkPa marriedapagirl. glad to have you here.

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    Re: Palmerton PA

    Marriedapagirl and Bill welcome to Talkpa and thank you for your posts. I have never been up that way. But for as much as everyone has been raving about it I might take a day trip too eventually.

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    Re: Palmerton PA

    Welcome to TalkPA. If you need any help posting pics, just ask... Everyone is really helpful here.
    Life has no remote. Get up and change it yourself.



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    Re: Palmerton PA

    Thats one thing I still haven't figured out how to do and videos too. Even with everyones help on here.

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    Exclamation Re: Palmerton PA

    The House on the Hill was owned by my Great Great Grandfather Walter Merrifield Bray, the postmaster for Palmerton and his wife and lots of children (one of those children being my great grandmother who had my grandma who had my mom etc etc). I just found this out today actually. According to my mom, the woman who owns the mansion now isnt related to us (we were guessing she would be, since anyone related to a Brae would be our relative) but I dont think she is related to any Bray's. If anyone knows her, I would love more info and maybe a contact number. The house I know was built by a civil war general, but I dont know how my great great grandfather acquired the house from the general. Isnt family history great!?
    Last edited by rgross686; 04-03-2010 at 06:49 PM. Reason: name spelling correction

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    Re: Palmerton PA

    welcome Rgross.

    Glad to have you here.

    I'd love to know more about that house. I was always facinated by it.

    Like why build it there? Who built it? When?

    Sounds like you have a lot of family history with Pamlerton.

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    Re: Palmerton PA

    Quote Originally Posted by Green Lantern View Post
    welcome Rgross.

    Glad to have you here.

    I'd love to know more about that house. I was always facinated by it.

    Like why build it there? Who built it? When?

    Sounds like you have a lot of family history with Pamlerton.

    I believe the general's name was Higgins, but I am not 100% sure, so dont quote me on that. My great great grandfather was in that house as far back as the 1850s I think my mom just said, so it is very very old, and was in the family a long time. This is great, I love learning new things about my family history!!! So, if anyone knows a Brae, related to one or knows of one in your family tree let me know because we are most likely related somehow

    And thank you, I am glad to be here!

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    Re: Palmerton PA

    Quote Originally Posted by rgross686 View Post
    I believe the general's name was Higgins, but I am not 100% sure, so dont quote me on that. My great great grandfather was in that house as far back as the 1850s I think my mom just said, so it is very very old, and was in the family a long time. This is great, I love learning new things about my family history!!! So, if anyone knows a Brae, related to one or knows of one in your family tree let me know because we are most likely related somehow

    And thank you, I am glad to be here!

    OK someone has wrong info, most likely my mother lol I just found this "Called Marshall's Hill, it is a 14-room mansion built by Elisha Marshall, a former Union Army brigadier general. It is claimed that neither he nor his wife (they eventually separated) ever really visited the town below their home. The home was built in 1881." House on the Hill, Lehigh Gap on Flickr - Photo Sharing!

    So, I have this theory, since we dont know how the house was passed to my great great grandfather from the general that maybe after the general and his wife separated, he sold the house to Walter......just a theory though!!!! Also, the General died shortly after in 1883, so maybe the house was acquired after the generals death?

    Ok maybe not, I just read the Generals obituary, and it says he died in Canandaigua, NY in 1883, So possibly after his separation he moved back to his home state......

    Just adding as i go!
    Last edited by rgross686; 04-02-2010 at 02:06 PM. Reason: adding my 2 cents =)

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