Pennsylvania Counties
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Pennsylvania Counties

There are sixty-seven counties of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania in the United States of America. The city of Philadelphia is coterminous with Philadelphia County, and governmental functions have been consolidated since 1854.

Bucks County, Pennsylvania

Bucks County Education, Geography, and History

Bucks County, Pennsylvania Courthouse

Bucks County is a county located in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Based on the 2010 census, the population was 625,249, making it the fourth-most populous county in Pennsylvania and the 98th-most populous county in the United States. The county seat is Doylestown. The county is named after the English county of Buckinghamshire.

Bucks County is included in the Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington, PA-NJ-DE-MD Metropolitan Statistical Area, more commonly known as the Delaware Valley. It is located immediately northeast of Philadelphia and forms part of the southern tip of the eastern state border.

Etymology - Origin of Bucks County Name

Bucks is named for Buckinghamshire in England, a ceremonial and non-metropolitan home county in South East England. The county town is Aylesbury and the largest town in ceremonial Buckinghamshire is Milton Keynes. This is where the Penns had lived for generations.


County QuickFacts: CensusBureau Quick Facts

Bucks County History

One of the three original counties created by William Penn in November 1682. Bucks is named for Buckinghamshire in England, where the Penns had lived for generations. Doylestown replaced Newtown as the county seat in 1812 and was incorporated as a borough on April 16, 1838. It was named for William Doyle, an innkeeper.

Most original settlers were Quakers, and William Penn's estate was at Pennsbury Manor. During the religious Great Awakening the log college at Neshaminy educated clergymen. In 1776-1777, Washington used Newtown and Keiths as bases for his Trenton and Princeton campaigns, crossing the Delaware on Christmas at McConkey's Ferry and in 1778 his army camped at Doylestown. Bristol was the first county seat, succeeded by Newton and then Doylestown. Fries' Rebellion occurred in 1798 in opposition to a federal tax on windows. Bucks has a long tradition of high quality farming, including selling seeds that are used all across the nation. Dairying became strong toward the end of the nineteenth century. Wealthy estates have acquired much of the farming area; 22 percent of the land is currently farmland. Textiles, pottery, and decorative tile making flourished. The U. S. Steel Company built a plant after World War II, and then the population increased sharply. Many found homes in the new housing complex of Levittown. Explorer Zebulon Pike, writer Pearl Buck, and War of 1812 general Jacob Brown were all from Bucks. There were Underground Railroad stations in four towns.

Geography: Land and Water

Bucks County lies in the southeastern edge of the state along the Delaware River. Most of the land is typical of the piedmont region, with hills becoming more distinct further north. Unlike in the Southern Piedmont, soil in the Pennsylvania Piedmont has historically been fertile, giving Bucks County large areas of valuable farmland. With the decline of the farming industry, debate has arisen over how much of this open space should be preserved, and how much should be allotted for commercial and residential development.

The southern third of the county between Philadelphia and Trenton, New Jersey, often called Lower Bucks, resides in the Atlantic Coastal Plain, and is flat and near sea level, and the county's most populated and industrialized area.

As reported by the Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 622 square miles (1,611 km2).607 square miles (1,573 km2) of it is land and 15 square miles (38 km2) of it (2.37%) is water.

Neighboring Counties

Bordering counties are as follows:

  • Lehigh County (northwest)
  • Northampton County (north)
  • Warren County, New Jersey (northeast)
  • Hunterdon County, New Jersey (northeast)
  • Mercer County, New Jersey (east)
  • Burlington County, New Jersey (southeast)
  • Philadelphia County (south)
  • Montgomery County (west)


Colleges and universities

Bucks County Community College
Delaware Valley College
Cairn University
Holy Family University in Newtown
La Salle University in Newtown

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