Valley Villages

In addition, three unincorporated villages had sprung up--Moxham, Morrellville and Walnut Grove. Three others--Kernville, Sharpsburg and Hornerstown--already had been absorbed by Johnstown. Kernville became the 5th and 6th Wards Hornerstown and Sharpsburg made up the 7th Ward.

Between 1852 and the important year of 1889, Johnstown attracted new industries and businesses and acquired the characteristics of a progressive and prosperous community.

The town gained another railroad--the Baltimore & Ohio; horse-drawn street cars, free mail service, electric lights, natural gas, a water system, telephone service and banking houses were some of the signs of advancement.

Then on May 31, 1889, Johnstown and its neighboring boroughs experienced their darkest day. On that date the South Fork Dam gave way and the great flood that roared through the valley became known to the world as the Johnstown Flood.

The raging flood tide left over 2,200 dead in its path, and it left valley communities crushed and maimed almost beyond recognition. It was one of the worst peace-time tragedies of all time.

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