Berks County

Berks County was named for the family home of William Penn in Berkshire, England, and today has a population of over 400,000 residents.

Berks County is part of the Schuylkill River National and State Heritage Area, which is rich in culture and history. Known as the “Revolutionary River,” the Schuylkill River provides an abundance of recreational activities and is surrounded by many parks, trails and historic landmarks.

Berks County has a unique local history and is home to several historic sites. The Indian Corn Creek Aqueduct, the Unionville Aqueduct in Union Township, the Schuylkill Canal Aqueduct bed at Five Locks, and the Allegheny Aqueduct are all on the Schuylkill River. The Allegheny Aqueduct was built in 1821 and carried the Girard Canal over the Allegheny Creek.

Other historical sites include the Pleasantville Covered Bridge, the Kutz Mill Covered Bridge, which was built in 1832 and is the oldest bridge in Berks County, and the William Penn Memorial Fire Tower, which was built in 1939 as a fire observation tower and tourist attraction.

The Hopewell Furnace, another national historic site in Berks, was operated from 1771 to 1883, and showcases early American technology from natural resource extraction to conservation. Today, the Hopewell Furnace is an historic landmark that reminds us today of the change and progress in technology that has occurred over the course of American history.

Berks County is a strong pillar of higher education and is home to Albright College, Alvernia University, Kutztown University, Penn State Berks, and Reading Area Community College (RACC).