March 18th, 2015
Simply put, transportation is the act or process of moving people or objects from one point or port to another and the method of doing so. However, there is nothing simple about how these modes of transportation have affected the lives and destinies of countless individuals and the surrounding area which developed into what would one day be the community of Watsontown. The earliest form of transportation was by foot or horseback followed by waterways. In the vicinity of Watsontown the earliest inhabitants, the Native Americans, traveled along paths following hunting grounds usually along various bodies of water which the animals would follow. When the first settlers came, they found it easiest to simply follow in the footsteps of the local inhabitants and these paths became roads.
As technology changed and new modes of transportation such as canals and railroads developed, the area adapted and improved with these new modes of travel.
Watsontown has been duly influenced by the paths and roads which developed into highway route 147, and the nearby routes 15, 180, and interstate route 80. The use of water ways such as the river and then the canal for transporting goods have come and gone, but they have left their mark with such reminders as the tow path, the foundations of the old lock house south of town and what became the town dump just west of Elm Street. The ability to cross both the river beginning with the ferry to the construction of a bridge to cross to White Deer, Union County as well as the bridge termed “overhead” to cross the railroads have made life easier for those traveling in and around the community. The railroad continues to run through town, but no longer is there a station for passengers nor the trolley line that used to connect Watsontown to Milton and Lewisburg.
The following pages will hopefully help explain in more detail these modes of transportation in and around Watsontown over the years.
Last Modified: 02.16.12