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Hosted by:  Lynne Canterbury

 Conemaugh Twp. Cemeteries
Forest Lawn Cemetery
Holy Cross Polish Cemetery
Locust Grove Cemetery
Mt. Carmel Cemetery
Oak/Singer Cemetery

 Conemaugh Communities
Bon Air
Cover Hill

 Other Conemaugh Links
USGS Map of Conemaugh Twp.
1890 Map
Conemaugh Valley School District
Conemaugh Valley High School - Senior Class Photos
Conemaugh Valley Memorial Hospital School of Nursing
East Conemaugh Boro High School - Senior Class Photos
Singer Hill School Students (Conemaugh Twp) - 1899
Wikipedia - Conemaugh Twp., Cambria Cnty, PA
Wikipedia - Staple Bend Tunnel, Registered Historic Place

In the beginning, the Conemaugh River starts where the Stony Creek meets the little Conemaugh, which is at the "Point" in today's downtown Johnstown. When Somerset Co. was formed out of Bedford Co. in the 1790's, the northern most two townships were Cambria, settled by Welsh, and Conemaugh, in the area around the confluence of the rivers. Cambria Co. was formed in 1804 when Conemaugh Twp. and Cambria Twp. from Somerset Co. were joined with Allegheny Twp. from Huntingdon Co. Shortly afterwards, another Conemaugh Twp., in Somerset Co, was formed from Quemahoning Twp., lying adjacent, across the county line. Conemaugh Twp. then formed the southwest portion of the new Cambria Co.

The town that grew where the rivers joined was known as the Conemaugh settlement. In the early 1830's it was incorporated as Conemaugh Borough [in January 1831], but very shortly [1834] the name was changed to Johnstown in honor of Joseph Johns, the original settler where the borough was located. After another couple years another borough was formed adjacent to Johnstown, this one again known as Conemaugh Borough. Thirty years later, in 1868, about two miles upstream, the next borough in the valley was East Conemaugh. After the 1889 flood, most of the boroughs in the valley merged to become the City of Johnstown, and Conemaugh Borough became part of the new city, while East Conemaugh still remains independent. The part of the city, adjacent to downtown, that was once Conemaugh Borough is today most frequently referred to as "Old" Conemaugh Borough.

Conemaugh Twp was later subdivided into Yoder Twp (west of the rivers) and Taylor Twp (north of the rivers). In 1876 the southern half of what was left of Conemaugh (east of the rivers) became Stonycreek Twp, leaving it to the same borders it has today, on the hilltop above the river to the northeast of the city.

Submitted by: Brian L. Cartwright


 Conemaugh Old Town 

Its real name is Connemach, but usage has softened it to Conemaugh, and as in a majority of the cases, it derives its name from the stream which the Indians first named. Connemach means: "otter." The trader, Jonas Davenport, refers to this Indian town in an affidavit made before the Provincial Council on October 29, 1731, when he stated that "on Connemach Creek there are three Shawneese towns, forty-five families, two hundred men," and that their Chief is Okawela. Scull's map of 1770 places this town at the junction of South Fork and Stoney creeks at the present site of Johnstown. An outstanding Johnstown historian, Mr. Dwight Roberts, with his usual scrutinizing care, places it a mile up from the junction, close to present Moxham. Chief Okawela , otherwise called Ocowellos, came westward from the former Shawnee town at Chillisquaqua on the Susquehanna River, and the three towns over which he ruled are conjectured to be by some as Connemach, Black Legs and Keckenepaulin's.



Our thanks to Bob Wissinger who formerly maintained this webpage.

Page Created: 5 Sep 2010.
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Lynne Canterbury, Diann Olsen, & contributors