Swarthmore, Pennsylvania, is a small borough located in Delaware County, in the southeastern part of the state. Situated approximately 11 miles southwest of Philadelphia, Swarthmore is known for its picturesque landscapes, charming neighborhoods, and its close-knit community.
The borough covers an area of about 1.4 square miles, with gentle rolling hills and lush green spaces. It is bordered by several townships, including Springfield Township to the north, Nether Providence Township to the east, and Ridley Township to the south. The Crum Creek flows through the eastern part of Swarthmore, adding to its natural beauty.
One of the defining features of Swarthmore is its proximity to nature. The borough is home to several parks and green spaces, providing residents and visitors with ample opportunities for outdoor recreation. Swarthmore College, a prestigious liberal arts institution, also contributes to the town’s greenery with its expansive campus, which includes woodlands, gardens, and walking trails.
The terrain in Swarthmore is characterized by its gentle slopes and valleys. The borough is located in the eastern edge of the Piedmont Uplands, a region known for its rolling hills and rocky terrain. The topography offers beautiful views of the surrounding landscape and creates a sense of tranquility in the area.
Swarthmore experiences a humid subtropical climate, with warm summers and cool winters. The average temperature in July, the hottest month, hovers around 85°F (29°C), while in January, the coldest month, temperatures typically range from 25°F to 40°F (-4°C to 4°C). The region receives an average annual precipitation of about 45 inches, evenly distributed throughout the year.
The borough is primarily a residential area, characterized by tree-lined streets and well-maintained homes. The architecture in Swarthmore is diverse, with a mix of historic houses, Victorian-style homes, and modern residences. The town’s historic district, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, showcases the borough’s rich architectural heritage.
In addition to its natural beauty, Swarthmore boasts a vibrant downtown area along Swarthmore Avenue, where residents find a variety of local businesses, shops, and restaurants. The town’s small size contributes to its walkability and fosters a strong sense of community.
Swarthmore is also known for its strong educational institutions. Besides Swarthmore College, the borough is home to Swarthmore-Rutledge School, a highly regarded public elementary school. The presence of these institutions contributes to the intellectual and cultural vibrancy of the community.
Overall, Swarthmore, Pennsylvania, offers a unique blend of natural beauty, small-town charm, and intellectual stimulation. Its geography, characterized by rolling hills, green spaces, and a close-knit community, makes it an attractive place to live and visit. Whether exploring the picturesque parks, strolling through the historic district, or engaging with the local community, Swarthmore offers a delightful experience for residents and visitors alike.
History, Economy and Politics of Swarthmore, Pennsylvania
Swarthmore is a small borough located in Delaware County, Pennsylvania. It was founded in 1886 by a group of Quakers who wanted to establish a community that was based on their values of simplicity, peace, and social justice. Today, Swarthmore is a thriving community that is known for its excellent schools, beautiful parks, and strong sense of community.
Economy: Swarthmore has a diverse economy that includes a mix of small businesses, professional services, and non-profit organizations. The largest employers in the area are Swarthmore College, which employs over 1,000 people, and the Swarthmore-Rutledge School District, which employs over 200. Other major employers include the Swarthmore Co-op, which is a community-owned grocery store, and several non-profit organizations that focus on social justice and environmental issues.
Politics: Swarthmore is known for its progressive politics and strong commitment to social justice. The borough is governed by a seven-member Borough Council, which is responsible for making policy decisions and overseeing the operations of the borough. The council is elected by the residents of the borough and serves four-year terms. Swarthmore has a long history of political activism, and many residents are involved in local and national political campaigns.
History: Swarthmore was founded in 1886 by a group of Quakers who wanted to establish a community that was based on their values of simplicity, peace, and social justice. The founders of the community were members of the Hicksite branch of the Quaker religion, which emphasized social justice and equality. The first residents of Swarthmore were primarily farmers and tradespeople who lived in simple homes and worked to create a sustainable community.
In the early 20th century, Swarthmore became a popular destination for academics and intellectuals who were drawn to the community’s commitment to education and social justice. Swarthmore College, which was founded in 1864, became a major center of intellectual and cultural activity in the area, and many of the college’s faculty and students were actively involved in local politics and social justice movements.
Today, Swarthmore is a vibrant community that is known for its commitment to education, social justice, and environmental sustainability. The borough has a strong sense of community and is home to many festivals, farmers markets, and other community events throughout the year. With its rich history and commitment to progressive values, Swarthmore is a unique and inspiring place to live.