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.

Cambria County, Pennsylvania

Cambria County Education, Geography, and History

Cambria County, Pennsylvania Courthouse

Cambria County is a county located in the state of Pennsylvania. Based on the 2010 census, the population was 143,679. Its county seat is Ebensburg. The county was created on March 26, 1804, from parts of Bedford, Huntingdon, and Somerset Counties and later organized in 1807. It was named for the nation of Wales.

Cambria County comprises the Johnstown, PA Metropolitan Statistical Area, which is also included in the Johnstown-Somerset, PA Combined Statistical Area.

Etymology - Origin of Cambria County Name

Cambria is an ancient name for Wales.


County QuickFacts: CensusBureau Quick Facts

Cambria County History

Created on March 26, 1804, from parts of Huntingdon, Somerset, and Bedford Counties and named for Cambria Township of Somerset County. Cambria is an ancient name for Wales. It was attached to Somerset County until 1807. Ebensburg, the county seat was incorporated as a borough on January 15, 1825 and named by Reverend Rees Lloyd for his deceased eldest son, Eben.

First permanent settlement was on the site of Loretto in 1788, and population growth was very slow until the 1830s. Then came the beginnings of coal mining (1825), the Allegheny Portage Railroad (1834), iron production (1841), and the Pennsylvania Railroad (1854). Always a large bituminous producer- today about seventh in the state- the county's iron ore was once also worth mining. Cambria Iron Works were formed in 1852 and bought out by Bethlehem Steel in 1922. The area witnessed pioneer projects in the Bessemer method and the open-hearth steel making processes, and in rolling steel rails. Disasters recurred: the Johnstown floods of 1889 and 1936, and mine disasters in 1902 (Johnstown), 1922 (Spangler), and 1940 (Portage). Labor unions made little progress in Cambria until the passage of the federal Wagner Act in 1937. Because it was so strongly committed to heavy industry, deindustrialization has been pronounced in Cambria since the 1970s. Welsh, Irish, and German groups were among the pre-industrial population, and the Russian prince-priest Demetrius Gallitzin ministered at Loretto from 1799 to 1829. Industrial employment resulted in the appearance of a medley of European ethnic groups.

Geography: Land and Water

As reported by the Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 693 square miles (1,796 km2), of which, 688 square miles (1,782 km2) of it is land and 5 square miles (14 km2) of it (0.78%) is water.

Neighboring Counties

Bordering counties are as follows:

  • Clearfield County (north)
  • Blair County (east)
  • Bedford County (southeast)
  • Somerset County (south)
  • Westmoreland County (southwest)
  • Indiana County (west)


Colleges and universities

Christ the Saviour Seminary, Johnstown
Mount Aloysius College
Saint Francis University
University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown

Community, junior, and technical colleges

Cambria-Rowe Business College
Pennsylvania Highlands Community College
Commonwealth Technical Institute, Johnstown
Wrightco Technologies Technical Training Institute, Ebensburg

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