History Digging into Delmont
Updated Mar 16, 2014, 2:08 PM
On a journey to collecting and researching the history of Delmont, Pennsylvania.
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Delmont, Pennsylvania

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Delmont, Pennsylvania

jenn

 Delmont, Pennsylvania 


A journey of collecting and recovering the history of Delmont, Pennsylvania in one source.

by Tracy Searight 
and Jenny Searight 


 Hello, my name is Jenny Searight  and  several years ago I came to Western PA with my family. This year I am taking on the challenge of achieving my silver award with the girl scouts.  I am working to help preserve the history of Delmont.  This is my page devoted to putting all Delmont history in one source available to the public.  If you have any information that can help me in my research please contact me so that I can document it for future generations.  

Enjoy. 

As I got to know the people in the community, I began to hear the unique stories of the Delmont area.  In looking at the area today, I could not believe this quiet town was once a busy stagecoach stop along the Northern Turnpike.  The last stagecoach stop to Pittsburgh from Philadelphia.   The invention of the railroad left little use for a stagecoach town yet Delmont continued to survive.  The turnpike brought  new life into the area, and the success of the Apple N Art's festival and Christmas in Salem Crossroads continues to attract thousands of visitors a year.  

Once upon a time in Delmont's history dedicated residents made plans to turn Delmont into an living open air museum.  The goal was to restore the area, have 3 museums.  The  goal of the Society was to recreate a way of life in its community reminiscent of the mid-1800s and, in so doing, provide a "living museum" of that time period. Donations were collected, community days and resource books written.  In the 1980's the Salem Crossroads Historical Society crumbled.  The plans, donations and ideas vanished in time. As the years went on Delmont has continued to survive. The  Apple N Art's Festival and Chrismas in Salem Crossroads Pilgrimage continued today in part of the hardwork of past and current dedicated residents. 

For more information regarding the hope and plans of the Salem Crossroads Historical Restoration Society. 
Article written in the paper quoting Frank Piper in the Pittsburgh Press June 27, 1978. 
http://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1144&dat=19780727&id=puEhAAAAIBAJ&sjid=YVgEAAAAIBAJ&pg=5001,4494538

An overview from living places.
http://www.livingplaces.com/PA/Westmoreland_County/Delmont_Borough/Salem_Crossroads_Historic_District.html

Here is an appeal filed in 1987  
http://pa.findacase.com/research/wfrmDocViewer.aspx/xq/fac.19870605_0042072.PA.htm/qx

My research has been unique as I am trying to put together pieces of Delmont hisotry  into one source to have for present and future generations of Delmont residents.  As I have found the resources of the past, have either been forgotten, lost or stolen.  In establishing this webpage it is my hope that this information will be documented in one source-correctly.  This will be a continue evolving page, one to be expanded and improve on as information is gathered. 
 

 
This is my site to help collect the history of Delmont, I welcome all stories, photo or anything that will restore, and document the real history of Delmont. Please feel free to contact me with information to help me preserve the history of this area. 
I want to thank Bob Yaley for keeping the scrapbooks of his grandfather. Bob Cupp for his articles and book Valley in the Hills and for every generous resident who cares enough about Delmont to help in this project.

My photos or information on this webpage are copyrighted.  Send me an email if you are interested in using these photos in any form of publication. They are either from my person collection, Bob Cupp and generous individuals. I thank you!



The lots were designed around the water supply.  The big spring was piped to a water trough.




 
The water trough originally constructed out of wood has changed many times over the years.  It has been stated it has been moved once from its current location.Photo copyrighted( photo courtesy of Charles A. Hall)



This is the incorporated Seal of New Salem used in 1833.  As you notice the  "S" is backwards This was recreated in Jean Troxell Kaufman's resource book that she help write for Delmont. This seal was used for two months before the backwards S was replaced. 

History of Delmont
  • 1784land warranted 
  • 1785  Wilson came to his 300 acres named it New Salem
  • 1812 post office was created called Salem X roads
  • 1814 central hotel is claimed to been established
  • 1814 December 23 public auction for 48 lots to form a "crossroads village"  lots were centered around the water source of the water trough.
  • 1871 Zachariah Zimmerman the town druggist as Post Master changed he name of Salem X Roads to Delmont.  
  • 1833 incorporated as New Salem Borough
  • Town was known as New Salem borough(salem Crossroads locally). Post office still known as Delmont, PA
  • 1967 the town votes the area officially changes the name to Delmont to match the name of the Post Office. 
    Zachariah Zimmerman and his son W.J Zimmerman. W.J Zimmerman eventually bought and ran his father's druggist business. W.J Zimmerman lived to 100 and recorded 7 generations of Delmont history. 
Jacob Earnest
I am a fan of Jacob Earnest. I believe he is a treasure in Delmont history. Jacob's deeds were  done out of kindness not to receive recognition.  A God loving, family man who loved his community.  In my research, of Delmont, I found little about him.  It was only through a generous man who gave me an article from a Muzzle magazine that redirected my research. 
 Jacob Earnest was generous with his time, money and land to Delmont.  A talented woodcarver and long rifle maker.   Although to long rifle lovers, he he is well known one of my goals to have his name and story told in Delmont. He not only donated the land for the Salem Lutheran church he donated the land of Eastview Cemetery.  
Jacob Earnest is a decesentant of Indian Eve.  He came to New Salem, PA in 1827.  He was council man was involved in the Salem Lutheran Church.  He was an expert gunsmith.  The parklet on Greensburg street was once his gunshop.  He had a very impressive will when he died.  His son A.J was the town's undertaker. Jacob Earnest died in 1884.  
Here is a website of Salem Luthern Church in Delmont, PA.  September 27, l850 as one of the men who met to consider the organization of a Lutheran. A motion was made and passed that those who desired to unite with the congregation be requested to hand in their names. One of the names listed is Jacob Earnest. Read more on the Historyhttp://www.salemdelmont.org/Salem_Lutheran_Church/Our_History.html
 Jacob Earnest
Photo copyrighted
Earnest is buried in Eastview Union cemetery 
Delmont, PA