Lehigh County, Pennsylvania

Lehigh County, Pennsylvania

Infobox U.S. County
county = Lehigh County
state = Pennsylvania

map size = 225
founded = March 6, 1812
seat = Allentown | largest city = Allentown
area_total_sq_mi =349
area_land_sq_mi =347
area_water_sq_mi =2
area percentage = 0.48%
census yr = 2000
pop = 312090
density_km2 =348
web = www.lehighcounty.org

Lehigh County is a county located in the U.S. state of Pennsylvania. It was formed in 1812 from parts of Northampton County. As of 2000, the population of the county is 312,090. Its county seat is AllentownGR|6.

Lehigh County is named after the Lehigh River (whose name is derived from the Delaware Indian term Lechauweki or Lechauwekink, meaning "where there are forks") [cite journal |last=Roberts |first=Charles R. |title=Place Names of Lehigh County and Their Origin |journal=Proceedings: Lehigh County Historical Society |year=1936 |publisher=Lehigh County Historical Society] , which runs through the county's two largest cities, Allentown and Bethlehem. It is located in the Lehigh Valley region of Pennsylvania, in the eastern part of the state.



According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 348 square miles (902 km²), of which, 347 square miles (898 km²) of it is land and 2 square miles (4 km²) of it (0.48%) is water.

The county is located within the Lehigh Valley, a geographic region bounded by Blue Mountain, a ridge of the Appalachian mountain range, which varies from 1,000 to convert|1600|ft|m in height in the north of the county, and South Mountain, a ridge of 500 to convert|1000|ft|m in height in the south of the county.

Adjacent counties are Carbon County to the north; Northampton County to the northeast and east; Bucks County to the southeast; Montgomery County to the south; and Berks County and Schuylkill County to the west.

Geographic Location (8-way)
Centre = Lehigh County
North = Carbon County
Northeast = Northampton County
East = Northampton County
Southeast = Bucks County
South = Montgomery County
Southwest = Berks County
West = Berks County
Northwest = Schuylkill County


Most of the county's climate is considered to fall in the humid continental climate zone. Summers are typically hot and muggy, fall and spring are generally mild, and winter is cold. Precipitation is almost uniformly distributed throughout the year.

For the city of Allentown, January lows average convert|-6|°C|°F and highs average convert|1.3|°C|°F. The lowest officially recorded temperature was convert|-26.7|°C|°F in 1912 . July lows average convert|17.6|°C|°F and highs average convert|29.2|°C|°F, with an average relative humidity (morning) of 82%. The highest temperature on record was convert|40.6|°C|°F in 1966 . Early fall and mid winter are generally driest, with October being the driest month with only 74.7 mm of average precipitation. [cite web| url=http://www.met.utah.edu/jhorel/html/wx/climate/normrain.html | title=Normal Monthly Precipitation, Inches | accessdate=2006-11-04 ]

Snowfall is variable, with some winters bringing light snow and others bringing numerous significant snowstorms. Average snowfall is convert|82.3|cm|in per year, [cite web| url=http://lwf.ncdc.noaa.gov/oa/climate/online/ccd/snowfall.html | title=Snowfall - Average Total In Inches | accessdate=2006-11-04 ] with the months of January and February receiving the highest at just over convert|22.86|cm|in each. Rainfall is generally spread throughout the year, with eight to twelve wet days per month, [cite web| url=http://www.met.utah.edu/jhorel/html/wx/climate/daysrain.html | title=Average Days of Precipitation, .01 cm or more | accessdate=2006-11-04 ] at an average annual rate of convert|110.54|cm|in. [cite web| url=http://www.met.utah.edu/jhorel/html/wx/climate/normrain.html | title=Average Monthly Precipitation | accessdate=2006-11-04 ] Allentown Pennsylvania weatherbox


As of the censusGR|2 of 2000, there were 312,090 people, 121,906 households, and 82,164 families residing in the county. The population density was 900 people per square mile (348/km²). There were 128,910 housing units at an average density of 372 per square mile (144/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 87.02% White, 3.56% Black or African American, 0.18% Native American, 2.10% Asian, 0.04% Pacific Islander, 5.28% from other races, and 1.83% from two or more races. 10.22% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 27.1% were of German, 7.9% Italian, 7.7% Irish, 6.2% Pennsylvania German and 5.6% American ancestry according to Census 2000. 85.0% spoke English, 8.4% Spanish and 1.2% Arabic as their first language.

There were 121,906 households out of which 30.60% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 53.00% were married couples living together, 10.50% had a female householder with no husband present, and 32.60% were non-families. 27.10% of all households were made up of individuals and 11.20% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.48 and the average family size was 3.02.

In the county, the population was spread out with 23.90% under the age of 18, 8.10% from 18 to 24, 29.20% from 25 to 44, 23.00% from 45 to 64, and 15.80% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females there were 93.20 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 89.60 males.


As of April 2008, there are 210,656 registered voters in Lehigh County [http://www.dos.state.pa.us/elections/lib/elections/055_voter_registration_statistics/2008april.pdf] .

* Democratic: 101,763 (48.30%)
* Republican: 76,871 (36.49%)
* Other Parties: 32,022 (15.20%)

Lehigh County and neighboring Northampton County are part of Pennsylvania's 15th Congressional district. Despite the advantage in Democratic registration in the district, voters elected Republicans Charlie Dent in 2004 and 2006 and Pat Toomey in 1998, 2000, and 2002 to Congress. In 2004, however, the county did narrowly vote for John Kerry over George W. Bush for President. The 15th Congressional district is generally considered one of the most contentious "swing districts" nationally, with neither Republicans nor Democrats winning the district consistently.

Famous people from Lehigh County

Lehigh County is the birthplace of several famous Americans, including:

*Chuck Bednarik, former professional football player, Philadelphia Eagles, and member of Pro Football Hall of Fame.
*Stephen Vincent Benét, author.
*Michaela Conlin, stage and television actress, "Bones".
*H.D., writer.
*Charlie Dent, Member of Congress.
*Peter Gruner, professional wrestler.
*Lee Iacocca, former chairman of Chrysler Corporation.
*Keith Jarrett, jazz musician.
*Michael Johns, health care executive and former White House speechwriter.
*Carson Kressley, fashion consultant on Bravo's "Queer Eye for the Straight Guy".
*Matt Millen, former professional football player, Oakland Raiders, San Francisco 49ers and Washington Redskins, and former President and General Manager, Detroit Lions.
*Andre Reed, former professional football player, Buffalo Bills and Washington Redskins.
*Amanda Seyfried, model and actress, The CW's "Veronica Mars" and HBO's "Big Love".
*Curt Simmons, former professional baseball player, California Angels, Chicago Cubs, Philadelphia Phillies and St. Louis Cardinals.
*Dana Snyder, voice actor, Cartoon Network's "Aqua Teen Hunger Force"
*Christine Taylor, actress and wife of actor Ben Stiller.
*Lauren Weisberger, author of "The Devil Wears Prada".


Under Pennsylvania law, there are four types of incorporated municipalities: cities, boroughs, , and, in at most two cases, towns. The following cities, boroughs and townships are located in Lehigh County:


Census-designated places

Census-designated places are geographical areas designated by the U.S. Census Bureau for the purposes of compiling demographic data. They are not actual jurisdictions under Pennsylvania law. Other unincorporated communities, such as villages, may be listed here as well.

Notable Villages


4-Year Colleges and Universities

*Cedar Crest College, Allentown
*DeSales University, Center Valley
*Muhlenberg College, Allentown
*Penn State Lehigh Valley, Fogelsville

2-Year Colleges and Technical Institutes

*Baum School of Art, Allentown
*Lehigh Carbon Community College - Main Campus, Schnecksville, and Donley Center, Allentown
*Lehigh Valley College, Center Valley
*Lincoln Technical Institute, Allentown

Public school districts and schools

*Allentown School District
**William Allen High School, Allentown
**Louis E. Dieruff High School, Allentown
*Bethlehem Area School District
**Freedom High School, Bethlehem
**Liberty High School, Bethlehem.
*Catasauqua Area School District
*East Penn School District
**Emmaus High School, Emmaus
**Eyer Middle School, Macungie
**Lower Macungie Middle School, Macungie
*Northern Lehigh School District
**Northern Lehigh High School, Slatington
*Northwestern Lehigh School District
**Northwestern Lehigh High School, New Tripoli
*Parkland School District
**Parkland High School, South Whitehall Township
*Salisbury Township School District
**Salisbury High School, Salisbury Township
*Southern Lehigh School District
**Southern Lehigh High School, Center Valley
*Whitehall-Coplay School District
**Whitehall High School, Whitehall Township

Non-public high schools and charter schools

*Allentown Central Catholic High School, Allentown
*Lehigh Career and Technical Institute, Schnecksville
*Lehigh Valley Christian High School, Allentown
*Roberto Clemente Charter School, Allentown
*Salem Christian School, Macungie


Air transportation

Air transport to and from Lehigh County is available through Lehigh Valley International Airport Airport codes|ABE|KABE.

Bus transportation

Public bus service in Lehigh County is available through the Lehigh and Northampton Transportation Authority, known as LANTA.

Road transportation


*I-476 -Northeast Extension of the Pennsylvania Turnpike

US Highway System

*Route 22
*Route 222

Pennsylvania Highway System

*Route 29 South
*Route 100
*Route 143
*Route 145
*Route 309
*Route 329
*Route 378
*Route 873
*Route 987

Other roads

*Cedar Crest Boulevard

Lehigh County media

The Lehigh County is part of the Philadelphia broadcast media market, though numerous New York City radio and television stations also are available in Allentown and its suburbs. Lehigh County-based media include "The Morning Call", a daily newspaper in Allentown, and two Allentown-based television stations: WLVT Channel 39 (a PBS affiliate) and WFMZ Channel 69 (an unaffiliated, independent television station). The four major Philadelphia-based network stations serving Lehigh County include: KYW-TV (CBS), WCAU (NBC), WPVI (ABC) and WTXF (Fox).

Lehigh County-area radio stations include WAEB-AM, a news, talk and sports station (in Allentown), WAEB-FM (known as B104), a Top 40 music station (in Allentown), and WZZO, a hard rock music station (in Whitehall Township). Most major New York City and Philadelphia stations also can be heard in the county.


External links

* [http://www.lehighcounty.org/ Lehigh County Government Official Web Site] .
* [http://www.mcall.com/community/guide/community/ "Living in the Greater Lehigh Valley," by "The Allentown Morning Call"] .

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

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