Travel Guide: The History and Culture of Scranton, Pennsylvania

Scranton is a city in Pennsylvania’s upper east. It’s famous for Steamtown National Historic Site, which features extremely old trains on a former rail yard. The Electric City Trolley Museum has interesting shows and one-of-a-kind trolleys in a reestablished nineteenth-century factory. You can also visit Lackawanna Coal Mine, which is located in McDade Park. With the decline and eventual demise of the coal industry in the 1950s, the city differentiated its economy and gained public recognition for its “Scranton Plan,” which provided jobs through modern development.

Many new plants were developed thanks to local community commitments, as well as private and state funding. Electronics and metal items are currently produced by driving manufacturers. The city also serves as a printing center and a transportation hub, with access to the Pennsylvania Turnpike. Let me take you on a journey to the history and culture of the city as well as the best places to see in Scranton, PA, and the best things to do in Scranton as well. However, before that, let’s take a look at the historical highlights of Scranton first.

Historical timeline of Scranton, PA

Scranton, the electric city
Source: epic water filters

1771- 1847

The oldest known residence that still stands today was built in 1771 by Isaac Tripp, who is famous for being the first European American immigrant in this area. The first post office in Scranton was established in 1811, near downtown Canton, primarily to assist with the newly opened businesses that sparked the rapid influx of European immigrants. The Scranton family founded the Lackawanna Iron and Steel Company in 1840 as a small business. Nobody could have predicted that the area would become prosperous as a result of it later on. Lackawanna Iron and Steel Company began large-scale production of iron tee-rails in 1847, which was the first in the entire country.

1853- 1886

The year 1853 is significant in the history of Scranton, Pennsylvania. The main reason was that an efficient transportation system was built as a result of the railroads that were built during that time period. Transporting iron and coal became much more feasible, and businesses began to thrive as a result. Another significant date in Scranton’s history is April 23rd, 1866. This is the date Scranton, Pennsylvania, was formally incorporated as a city after beginning as a small settlement.

Scranton has been a leading city from historic times for the development of railways and relevant technological niches. In 1886, the first successfully working, continuously-operating electrified steel car, the trolley system, was introduced in the nation by the Scranton railway company. This is the major reason why Scranton is famously known as the electric city.


During this time period, Stanton Lays, the nation’s largest producer of Nottingham Leys, opened in Scranton. It employed approximately 1400 people at its peak, but the company is no longer in operation. The building, however, still stands as a constant reminder of the city’s historical richness. In 1891, Thomas J. Foster established the international correspondence school ICS, or, to put it another way, the world’s first distance learning program, primarily to educate the region’s miners. 1902 is the era of the historically famous anthracite coal strike, which was led by Johnny Michelle, the miners’ union president at the time.

The protest was sparked by the absurdly low wages offered to miners, and US President Theodore Roosevelt was forced to intervene. An anthracite coal strike commission was formed, with both parties expected to engage in peaceful negotiations. The hearing was held at the Lackawanna County Courthouse, and it became a historical event.


Doctor Isaiah Fox founded the world-famous Everhart Museum of Natural History, Science, and Art in 1908.
The museum is located in Nail Park, 1901 Mulberry St. To this day, the museum continues to entertain both domestic and international visitors. The famed architect Raymond M. Hood designed the Masonic Temple and Scottish Rite cathedral at 420 N. Washington Avenue, in downtown Scranton. The structures were inaugurated on January 2, 1930. Even to this date, both structures remain wholly open to the public, working as major tourist attractions of the area as well as a great site for art performances.

The best things to do in Scranton 

Nay Aug Park

Scranton, PA

You should take in the beautiful scenery of the park while hiking along the path that runs along the western slant. The most common goal for hikers and climbers is the 22-foot-high waterfall known as ‘Nay Aug falls.’ There are two looking stages on each bank, designed to provide better access to the magnificent view of the fall. If you want to unwind, taking a dip in Nay Aug Park’s Olympic-sized pools with water slides is unquestionably a better and safer option. Swimming and waterslides are $5 for the two occupants and travelers, and a single-season pass is $50 or $75. The David Wenzel Treehouse, which was built in 2007, is one of the most fascinating features of the recreation area. 

Knoebels carnival

Knoebels carnival, scranton pa
Source: homepage

Assuming you’re already in town and looking for fun things to do, why not take a short side trip to Knoebels Amusement Park, which is located in Elysburg, Pennsylvania. Knoebels claims to be America’s largest free-of-charge event congregation. For your end-of-week plans, this is an ideal old-fashioned escape with rollercoasters, swimming, and a cookout trip with your family. The rides range from kid-friendly to family-friendly, to roller coasters and hallo-fun rides. The event congregations’ main draws are its ‘Lazer Command, Mini golf, XD theatre, and bald eagle living spaces. If your family is looking for some splish-splashing fun, there are a variety of water slides to choose from.

If you plan to spend the entire week at the event congregation, there are numerous options available, including Knoebel Campsite ($56/night, $355/week), comfortable log cabins (single lodge for up to 6 people, $155/night, $965/week), Lake greatness camping area, and a few other offers ranging from budget to extravagance stays.

Everhart Museum, Scranton

Everhart Museum, scranton pa
Source: Lackawana County

It was named after popular war veteran Dr. Isaiah Fawkes Everhart, the first financier and major supplier of its extensive normal history collection. Initially, the exhibition hall was devoted to displaying a variety of local birds and wildlife examples, but as the assortments of subjects in their assortments expanded, so did the museum’s focal point. Initially, the gallery’s workmanship assortment included Oceanic, Japanese, and African craftsmanship. Later, in 1940, it was granted a liberal combination of American craftsmanship. Situated at 1901 Mulberry St, Scranton, PA.

Everhart craftsmanship schooling camp: Fundamental craftsmanship courses for understudies ranging from Grades-standard fifth to eighth and kindergarten to fourth shows and instruction in various fundamental craftsmanship strategies. Encouraging inventiveness, innovative capacity, and decisive thinking in children through craftsmanship treatment in the Creative Articulation Lab for grades K-Sixth. Enrollment fees are $40 for non-participants in the exhibition hall and $35 for individuals in the historical center.

Ricketts Glen State Park, Scranton

Ricketts Glen State Park, scranton pa
Source: family travels on a budget

Are you searching for a good climbing spot? Or looking for hidden gems somewhere down in the backwoods trails? Simply a short ride away from Scranton is one of the top vacation destinations of Pennsylvania, Ricketts Glen State Park. This state park is known for its 22 waterfalls, the most remarkable being Ganoga falls at 94ft height. There are hiking trails of varying levels that you can choose. While there are well-disposed exercises in abundance in the recreation area, including relaxing by lake Jean, which has waterside outdoor tables, a portion of the hiking trails are ideal to be gone by customary and master explorers, as it were.

It’s an incredible spot for an end-of-the-week trip with your family and fishing, hunting, and swimming are all considered in this park. There are additionally log lodges and campgrounds for you to spend your evenings in.

Anthracite Heritage museum

This is more than just a historical center to teach you about coal mining ventures; it also includes a location to rediscover the history of European foreigners who came to NE Pennsylvania in search of work in material and mining enterprises.

Scranton Iron Furnaces Tour: 4 impact heaters are byproducts of America’s verifiable iron industry. The heaters demonstrate to visitors the significance of Scranton’s coal mining industry in the public economy.

The Museum is open from May 1 to Sep 30(Mon-Sat 9 am to 5 pm) in summer and Oct 1 to April 30(Wed-Sat 9 am to 5 pm) in winter.

Bushkill Falls, Scranton

Bushkill Falls, Scranton Pa
Source: Giovanni/Reddit

Bushkill Falls is a breathtaking series of 8 waterfalls and long winding woodland hiking trails, wooden scaffolds, and spouting waterways found high up in the Pocono mountains, exclusively by the Peters family, about 1 hour and 12 minutes drive away from Scranton. It is one of the most mind-blowing destinations in Pennsylvania. The danger level of hiking trails varies from one to another. So, if you decide to hike, please keep all of the necessary climbing gear (most notably proper climbing shoes) as well as a clinical medical aid unit on hand for good measure.

The falls can be seen closer up through the wooden scaffolds built over the streams, with special attention paid to the tallest waterfall, which stands 100 feet tall. There are opportunities for fishing, paddle boats on the waterway, a jungle gym for children as well. It may become crowded after 11 a.m., so I recommend planning an early outing and purchasing your tickets online to avoid standing in long lines. Confirmation fees; end-of-week/occasions; $18/adult, $17/senior, $9/child. Non-weekend days: $15/adult, $14/senior, and $9/child.

Steamtown NHS

Steamtown NHS, Scranton Pa
Source: Wikipedia

While innovation continues, works of art remain works of art. There is still a special appreciation for steam motor trains that draws both tourists and locals to the Steamtown National Historic Site. Short train rides on the ‘Scranton restricted’ line are a well-known attraction of the area. The route takes you along the Lackawanna River, past the Radisson (Lackawanna Station Inn), briefly stopping at the University of Scranton, and then returning to the Steamtown NHS boarding area. It’s usually a 30-second full circle, and the fare is $5/person, ages 6 and up.

The rear is the train’s backside, which is usually reserved for its group members. Known as ‘the rear insight,’ guests are allowed to ride in the back and feel like they are a part of the team. It’s an all-inclusive piece of “the Scranton restricted” ticket. This site’s main purpose is to document the history of trains in the United States through the use of steam motor train rides and presentations. The address is 350 Cliff St, Scranton, PA 18503, USA.

The Electric City Trolley Museum

Electric city streetcar exhibition hall, Scranton Pa
Source: TripAdvisor

I recommend The Electric City Trolley Museum to visitors who are interested in trains and the antiques associated with them, or who want to see the rebuilding efforts of exemplary hardware back to working order. Participate in the thrilling ride that connects Steamtown’s memorable public site to a streetcar station building in Moosic, Pennsylvania. The excursion also includes a long passage ride that will make you feel as if you’ve recently witnessed a slice of life in the 1920s. The Museum has an exhibition where visitors can see the constant repairs on streetcars and interurbans. Without a doubt, it is a fascinating location for train enthusiasts.

The Museum has a few outstanding models on display, as well as resurrected ancient train rarities. It is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at 300 Bluffs St., Scranton, PA 18503. Confirmation and ride bundled fees are $14 for adults, $13 for seniors, and $12 for children aged 3 to 17. Tolls are $10 for groups of 20 or more and $8 for adults and children individually.

Houdini Museum, Scranton

Houdini Museum, Scranton Pa
Source: Lackawanna County

Are you a fan of magic shows? At the Houdini Museum, learn about Harry Houdini’s amazing life and seasons, see some of his genuine antiquities, and watch enthralling, amazing, enchanted events! Located at 1433 N Main Avenue, Scranton, PA 18508, USA, and overseen by the incredibly popular ‘the principal woman of sorcery’ Dorthy and Dick Brookes, it is best to visit between the hours of 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. on Sundays and Saturdays. It’s one of the places with the best reviews from visitors, thanks to its entertaining presentation of various facts about Harry Houdini’s life by knowledgeable hosts and exceptional sorcery shows popular with both children and adults.

Scranton Cultural Center at the Masonic Temple

Masonic Hall Scranton
Source: visitnepa

This iconic structure is over 180,000 square feet in size and was constructed during the Great Depression. It was designed by the same architect who worked at the Rockefeller Center. The mission of the Scranton Cultural Center at the Masonic Temple is to revitalize a national architectural treasure as a regional center for the arts, education, and community activity that is accessible to all.
This architectural marvel in Scranton’s Gothic District features 17 venue spaces, including a ballroom that also serves as the theater’s rehearsal. The facility, designed by the same designer as Rockefeller Center, was built so that multiple groups could host activities or gatherings while also providing personal space for the craftsmen. It can be found at 420 N. Washington Ave, Scranton, PA 18503.

Best Places to Eat and Best Places to drink in Scranton

From plates of mixed greens to courses, savor the Lebanese specialty of Savory maza and partake in the simple Lebanese cooking experience. Look at Cooper’s Seafood House Seafood, which is a great place to get good fish and enjoy eating and drinking on the porch. The best option is to go to a Mediterranean café and then to the nurseries. Snatch a light meal, modern center eastern and Mediterranean plans, outside eating experience Backyard Ale’s Crafts lager will astound you with its quality. It houses Scranton’s main specialty brew center, complete with an open-air deck and a wide range of food options. It’s a great place to hang out with your gang.

One thought on “Travel Guide: The History and Culture of Scranton, Pennsylvania

  1. As a travel guide this article requires a good editor. The oldest house was occupied by Isaac TRIPP. Other misspellings are too numerous to list. The author omits mention of Masonic Hall for plays and concerts to listen to.

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