Population Gains

The mills turned out rails and the railroads bought them or transported them to other buyers. Business increased and the population of the valley doubled and redoubled until it hit 6,000 in 1856--only four years after the iron company was founded.

The influx of new workers overflowed the boundaries of Johnstown Borough. In the next three decades the valley population skyrocketed to 30,000 people. This brought about the creation of new boroughs and new villages, all contiguous or near to each other.

Back in 1849, when the canal business was at its peak, Johnstown was joined by a municipal neighbor--Conemaugh Borough. This borough, adopting Johnstown's discarded name, was chartered on March 23, 1849, as the second municipality in the valley. Then came Millville Borough on July 16, 1858; Cambria Borough followed on October 11, 1861; Prospect on December 9, 1863; Franklin on March 9, 1868; East Conemaugh on September 10, 1868; Coopersdale, October 7, 1869; Woodvale, July 4, 1870, and Grubbtown, August 8, 1882.

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