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Arendtsville in Adams County, Pennsylvania — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
 

Why are South Mountain and the Fruit Belt so important to the area and Pennsylvania?

 
 
Why are South Mountain and the Fruit Belt so important to the area and Pennsylvania? Marker image. Click for full size.
By Devry Becker Jones, November 11, 2020
1. Why are South Mountain and the Fruit Belt so important to the area and Pennsylvania? Marker
Inscription.  
The Historic South Mountain Fruit Belt encompasses about 20,000 acres and forms a fertile crescent (half moon shape) covering the southeastern slopes of South Mountain in the western half of Adams County. The soils are deep, well drained and gravelly, and make this one of the finest fruit producing regions in the United States. In fact, Adams County is the largest producer of apples and peaches in Pennsylvania and 5th in the nation. A thriving fruit industry has existed here for over a century, and now there is also a growing winemaking industry. Only in Italy can similar soils be found.

In 1878, Noah Sheely planted the first commercial orchards 4 miles west of Arendtsville (now the Round Barn Farm & Market). Mr. Sheely, a flamboyant and influential character went to the Chicago World's Fair in 1895 and found a buyer for Adams County's first big crop of apples. Very soon, other orchards were planted in the county, notably Deardorffs (now home to Hauser's Estate Winery) and Tysons (one of several local fruit growing Quaker families). The industry grew and by 1925, there were 50,000 barrels of apples exported to England. Local
Why are South Mountain and the Fruit Belt so important to the area and Pennsylvania? Marker image. Click for full size.
By Devry Becker Jones, November 11, 2020
2. Why are South Mountain and the Fruit Belt so important to the area and Pennsylvania? Marker
forestlands supplied the growing wooden apple barrel factories at several locations including here in Arendtsville. A successful fruit processing business was launched in 1907, when Christian H. Musselman purchased a local canning business in nearby Biglerville and the Musselman brand was created. Later, Knouse Foods Cooperative Inc. purchased these operations and expanded the well-known Musselman and Lucky Leaf brands.

Since Arendtsville is located in the heart of the largest fruit growing region in Pennsylvania. The Pennsylvania State University established a Fruit Research Laboratory here in 1918. This ever-expanding research program continues today with a laboratory and office building in nearby Biglerville and research plots still located here.
 
Topics and series. This historical marker is listed in these topic lists: AgricultureEducationIndustry & Commerce. In addition, it is included in the Quakerism ⛪ series list.
 
Location. 39° 55.31′ N, 77° 18.029′ W. Marker is in Arendtsville, Pennsylvania, in Adams County. Marker is at the intersection of South High Street and Chambersburg Street, on the right when traveling south on South High Street. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 11 S High St, Biglerville PA 17307, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 4 miles of this marker, measured as the crow
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flies. Pennsylvania Bread Basket: Feeding a Nation in Conflict (here, next to this marker); South Mountain: The Bedrock Of Conservation… (a few steps from this marker); Local History of the Area (a few steps from this marker); Veterans Memorial (a few steps from this marker); Biglerville (approx. 2.8 miles away); The Historic Thomas Bros. Country Store (approx. 2.8 miles away); Traveling the Highway (approx. 3 miles away); a different marker also named Veterans Memorial (approx. 3.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Arendtsville.
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on November 12, 2020. It was originally submitted on November 12, 2020, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia. This page has been viewed 37 times since then. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on November 12, 2020, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia.
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Jan. 16, 2021