The first new book in quite a while about Perkasie’s history will be released next month, and here are the details.
I have been threatening to write such a book for the past few years since starting my Preserving Perkasie blog. The book, called “An American Hometown,” combines three past historical projects with about six months of new research.
“An American Hometown” is the first fully documented history of Perkasie Borough from William Penn’s time until August 1945. The project combines background from several past Perkasie histories with primary sources, such as county records, newspapers, census data, and personal accounts.
Perkasie’s early story is interesting and inspirational. In short, the cigar industry created Perkasie Borough, but the pants business saved it. As early as 1900, Perkasie families had high home-ownership rates, and many women worked outside of the home. That foundation allowed Perkasie to weather the storm when the town’s main industry suffered a sudden death in the 1920s. The rest of this book shows how Perkasie survived the Great Depression and World War II.
“An American Hometown” also has a documented history of the days before Perkasie became a village in July 1871 and a borough in May 1879. Those days include the dramatic construction of the Landis Ridge train tunnel (which might explain why some people feel it is haunted); the story of the failed first attempt to start a town in Perkasie; and Perkasie’s first European settlers. This new information came from the Spruance Library archives in Doylestown and from other sources.
It is not a long book at 188 pages, with 87 illustrations, but I think it is important to understand Perkasie’s origin story. “An American Hometown” is about the women and men who made today’s Perkasie possible as a community that came from nowhere to thrive and survive despite two World Wars, the Great Depression, and losing its leading employers.
If you are interested in the book, send me your information below and I’ll send you a note when it is available to order. “An American Hometown” is priced at a Perkasie-reasonable $19.99, not including taxes and shipping if your order online.
And if you want to read a brief preview, here is a link to an excerpt from Chapter 2, about Comleyville, the lost town that preceded Perkasie, and the founding of Perkasie village in 1871.
Thanks again to all those that have helped me in the past with digging through Perkasie’s history, and I hope you consider the book!
P..S. I am already starting on book two, about Perkasie between 1946 and 1988!
Book Pre-Order Info Request