“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Huntingdon in Huntingdon County, Pennsylvania — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)

J.Simpson Africa


J.Simpson Africa Marker image. Click for full size.
By Mike Wintermantel, June 11, 2016
1. J.Simpson Africa Marker
Inscription. No man has contributed more to the preservation of Huntingdon County history than J. Simpson Africa, who resided here while compiling his monumental History of Huntingdon & Blair Counties in 1888. Lot#16, on which this building stands, was owned by the Africa family from 1796 to 1918. J.S.A. was born and died here. It was always his principal residence, no matter where the obligations of later life took him.
As a young man, Africa learned the surveyor's trade from his father and uncle, and first worked under Samuel Mifflin laying out the right-of-way for the Huntingdon & Broad Top Mountain Railroad. His natural attention to accuracy and prodigious knowledge of Pennsylvania land titles elevated him to the top of his field, leading a biographer to report: "He has been pronounced by competent authority the best surveyor in Central Pennsylvania, and has not his superior in the state, if anywhere."
In later life, Africa demonstrated similar aptitude as a writer, editor, businessman, and politician: he served as Secretary of the Department of Internal Affairs at Harrisburg, president of the Union Trust Company of Philadelphia, and Grand Master of the Grand Masonic Lodge of Pennsylvania.
Erected 2000 by Huntingdon County Historical Society.
J.Simpson Africa NHRP Marker image. Click for full size.
By Mike Wintermantel, June 11, 2016
2. J.Simpson Africa NHRP Marker
This Property has been placed on the National Register of Historic Places
By the United States Department of the Interior
Circa 1830
40° 29.05′ N, 78° 0.602′ W. Marker is in Huntingdon, Pennsylvania, in Huntingdon County. Click for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 322 Penn Street, Huntingdon PA 16652, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. McMurtrie Mansion (within shouting distance of this marker); David R. Porter (about 300 feet away, measured in a direct line); Onojutta Juniata Achsinnink Standing Stone (about 300 feet away); Speer House (about 400 feet away); 228 Penn Street (about 500 feet away); Huntingdon County (about 600 feet away); 222 Penn Street (about 600 feet away); War Memorial (about 700 feet away). Click for a list of all markers in Huntingdon.
Categories. Notable Persons
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Mike Wintermantel of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. This page has been viewed 135 times since then. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on , by Mike Wintermantel of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
Editor’s want-list for this marker. Distant shot of marker and its surroundings • Can you help?
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