Wissahickon Creek

Wissahickon Creek is a stream in southeastern Pennsylvania. Rising in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, it runs about 23 miles (37 km) passing through and dividing Northwest Philadelphia before emptying into the Schuylkill River at Philadelphia. Its watershed covers about 64 square miles (170 km2).

Much of the creek now runs through or next to parkland, with the last few miles running through a deep gorge. The beauty of this area attracted the attention of literary personages like Edgar Allan Poe and John Greenleaf Whittier. The gorge area is now part of the Fairmount Park system in Philadelphia, and the Wissahickon Valley is known as one of 600 National Natural Landmarks of the United States.

The name of the creek comes from the Lenape language for "catfish creek" or "stream of yellowish color". On the earliest map of this region of Pennsylvania, by Thomas Holme, the stream is called Whitpaine's creek, after one of the original settlers with William Penn. Industry sprang up along the Wissahickon not long after European settlement, with America's first paper mill set up on one of the Wissahickon's tributaries. A few of the dams built for the mills remain visible today.

Read more about Wissahickon Creek:  Geography, Geology, Tributaries, Quotations

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