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[graphic header] A National Register of Historic Places Travel Itinerary Delaware and Lehigh National Heritage Corridor
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[graphic] Bristol Historic District

[photo] Images of the variety of residential and commercial buildings within the Bristol Historic District
Photographs from the National Register collection

Bristol dates from 1681 when Samuel Clift began operating a ferry across the Delaware River. The settlement composed primarily of Quakers grew around the ferry, and in 1697 residents petitioned the Provincial Council to establish the community as a market town. During the last half of the 18th century Bristol gained prominence as a ferry landing and a way station for the New York to Philadelphia stagecoach. Between the 1780s and the 1820s it became famous for its spa, as people flocked to Bath Springs to take the waters. A number of wealthy residents soon settled in the area and built large grand residences. Shipbuilding and completion of the Delaware Division of the Pennsylvania Canal in 1832 transformed Bristol into a transportation hub. Property along the riverfront soon filled with wharves, docks and warehouses to accommodate shipments arriving on the canal; and mills and factories were built along the canal where water provided power and transportation for goods. There are more than 300 residential and commercial buildings within the historic district, some dating back to the early 18th century. Bristol, as the third oldest city in Pennsylvania, was known for its premier spa, its activity related to the Pennsylvania Canal, and as the most important industrial town in Bucks County.

The Bristol Historic District is bounded by New Brook St. , the north-west property of 301-305 Lincoln St., including 328 to 310 Lincoln St., and follows Radcliffe and Mill Sts., with sections of Market, Mulberry, Walnut, Franklin, Dorrance, Lafayette, Washington and Jefferson near the river. The Friends Cemetery on Wood St. and Pond St. where it intersects with Mulbery and Market Sts. are in the boundaries. Opposite the District is Burlington Island, in the Delaware River, which is in New Jersey. Many of the businesses within the district open to the public during normal business hours.

 [graphic] Link to Canal History Essay
 [graphic] Link to Delaware and Lehigh Region Essay
 [graphic] Link to Scranton and the Railroad Essay
 [graphic] Link to Establishing the Heritage Corridor Essay


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