About Montour Township

About

Montour Township is a friendly community of over 1400 people located in Columbia County, Pennsylvania covering 9.2 square miles. It is a skilled community of people from various industries and occupations as well as a rich environment of historic and natural scenery.

Montour Township is also the home of the Rupert Covered Bridge No. 56 – a 185 foot covered bridge crossing Fishing Creek. It is one of 28 historic covered bridges in Columbia County and was listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 1979.

History

When visiting Montour Township, you will want to step back into history as you visit the Indian Head Campground in Rupert, PA. If you can catch up to local historian, Tom Long, his knowledge is extensive and his passion for the preservation of local history is admirable! On the property, artifacts have surfaced that clearly identify the location as the remains of an Native American village. Native Americans that were local to our area were the Onondaga, Iroquois and Seneca.

Between the years of 1775-77, Rupert was settled. The first two story log cabin was built by Lincoln Boddey. The log cabin stood on the property of the Indian Head Campground until Lincoln sold it to the Paxton family

Prior to 1820, man-powered “pole” boats were built to travel the Susquehanna River. After Fulton invented the steam engine, boats would then travel from Rupert to New York. One interesting story was retold about “The Catawissa”, a steam powered boat that made it as far as Berwick – only to explode.

Did you know that Rupert once had a flourishing saw mill and slate plant? In the saw mill, lumber was not only planed but gun powder barrels were designed and built.

Did you know at one time canal boats coursed as far as the Erie Canal via Rupert? In Rupert, canal boats were repaired. In our neighboring community of Espy, canal boats were built. The Rupert Canal paralleled Route 42, connected to the Bloomsburg Canal and then tied into the Erie Canal. The canal was used to transport coal and limestone from Scranton to Harrisburg. The canal boats were 60-70’ in length and were towed by the mules along the canal in the tow path which you can still hike at the campground. With the advent of railroads in 1912, the use of the canal ceased.

Did you know that this wonderful little community was the central train hub of the area?

Did you know that you can still see the beautiful stone pillars of the locks of the canal on the property of the Indian Head Campground? The construction is simply amazing.

Do you know how the Profile Rock (Indian Head Rock) received its name and fame? Essentially, the representation of the form of the Indian head was a result of blasting the rock formation to lay down the road in late 1890’s.

In 1847, our beautiful restored Rupert Covered Bridge which crosses Fishing Creek was built. The original cost of the structure was $1600.00. One of the major curved beams was cracked which compromised the stability of the structure so the bridge was restored in 1999. Steel beams were incorporated to stabilize the structure of the bridge so that it can handle the load of a fire truck.

Come and visit Montour Township! There is lots of local history to enjoy and preserve!

Contact us today!