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Blair County is a county located in the state of Pennsylvania. Based on the 2010 census, the population was 127,089. Its county seat is
Hollidaysburg. The county was created on February 26, 1846, from parts of Huntingdon and Bedford Counties.
Blair County comprises the Altoona, PA Metropolitan Statistical Area.
Named for John Blair, a prominent citizen.
County QuickFacts: CensusBureau Quick Facts
Created on February 26, 1846 from
parts of Huntingdon and Bedford Counties, and named for John Blair, a prominent
citizen. Hollidaysburg, the county seat, was incorporated as a borough on August
10, 1836, and named for Adam and William Holliday, early settlers.
Before the county's formation the area was located on the Frankstown Path and was dangerous to settle because of threats from Indians. It was visited by the Catholic priest Prince Demetrius Gallitzin. The Blair family appeared after the Revolution and led the movement to form the county. In 1831 Hollidaysburg became the terminal of the Portage Railroad that carried canal boats over the mountains to Johnstown. Altoona arose because of the Pennsylvania Railroad's yards founded there in 1846; this was the main employer in the county until the 1970s. Iron production diminished after 1865, but Blair has produced much bituminous coal, paper, and printing products, as well as the lumber used by the canal and the railroad. Its mountainous terrain is unfavorable for cultivation, but Blair ranks twenty-fourth among Pennsylvania's sixty-seven counties in income from livestock. One-fourth of the land is held in farms. Originally settled by German and Scotch-Irish groups, Altoona's railroad employment brought about a much wider ethnic mix.
As reported by the Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 527 square miles (1,365 km2), of which, 526
square miles (1,362 km2) of it is land and 1 square miles (3 km2) of it (0.25%) is water.
Bordering counties are as follows:
Penn State Altoona
South Hills School of Business and Technology
YTI Career Institute
Pennsylvania Highlands Community College