America's Best History Spotlight
On this page we're going to Spotlight the lesser known historic sites and attractions that dot the history landscape across the USA and are worth a visit if you're in their area. And while they may be lesser known, some are very unique, and will be that rare find. You'll be, at times, on the ground floor, or maybe even know something others don't. It'll be fun. Visit them.
Daniel Boone Homestead, Pennsylvania
Over five hundred acres in southeastern Pennsylvania, about fifty miles from Philadelphia, were considered the frontier in the times of Daniel Boone. Today, it's the deep suburbs of Philadelphia and part of a remarkably intact historic site, including Daniel Boone's father, Squire Boone's, two hundred and fifty acres, and the home site that Daniel Boone grew up in. Things are changing there as far as who takes charge of the state owned site; once again, the state will run things starting spring 2020. It had been run by a friend's group since 2009, whose diligent stewardship of the property and pristine history allowed the site to remain open during difficult times. Thanks to them for that!
The site tells the story of three families who lived there, including famous Daniel, with Heritage Days, guided tours, and paths through the landscape. There's a small fee for a guided or self-guided tour of the grounds (pay at the Visitor Center), and there's plenty to see, including the home, a sawmill, Visitor Center, and more. Photo above: Frontiersmen, including Daniel Boone, meeting a Boy Scout, 1912, Will Crawford. Courtesy Library of Congress. Today Boy Scouts, and other groups, can camp at the Homestead. Prior registration necessary.
Info, What's There Now, History Nearby
Daniel Boone Homestead
Yes, while the homestead has a focus on famous frontiersmen Daniel and the first sixteen years of his life, it also tells the story of the Maugridge and the DeTurk families. Daniel was born November 2, 1734 and lived at the homestead until the family moved to North Carolina in 1750. The family were Quakers, but expelled after two of Squire Boone's children, not Daniel, married outside the faith.
The Maugridge family purchased the home in 1750 and lived there for sixteen years. They were friends of Benjamin Franklin and expanded the home. The DeTurks bought the property in 1770 and lived there during the American Revolution, including the battles of Brandywine, Battle of the Clouds, and Washington's Philadelphia Campaign trek to the iron forges, Reading and Warwick, south of the Boone homestead.
Photo above: Daniel Boone birthplace in the expanded home that remains on the homestead site, 1958, Cervin Robinson, Historic American Buildings Survey. Courtesy Library of Congress. Below: Daniel Boone Homestead during Charter Day, 2020.
Where Is It
Daniel Boone Homestead is located at 400 Daniel Boone Road, Birdsboro, PA 19508. Daniel Boone Road takes a right turn, north, off Route 422 ten miles west of Pottstown, Pennsylvania. That's about twenty-five to thirty miles west of Valley Forge National Historical Park, if you're visiting history there.
What is There Now
Daniel Boone Homestead includes five hundred and seventy-nine acres of land with buildings representing both the time of Daniel Boone, as well as newer structures built by the other families who lived there. There's a Visitor Center with fifteen minute film, sawmill, Daniel Boone homesite within the Historic Area that includes eight 18th and 19th century buildings to explore. During special events, such as Charter Day in early March, living history interpretors give tours of the various buildings.
When is the Homestead Open and How Much to Visit?
Daniel Boone Homestead is open year round on weekends, with expanded days and hours in the spring, fall, and summer. With the state taking control of the site in more full fashion in 2020, spring hours are the only ones that have been established with the site open daily 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. and the Visitor Center and structures open Friday to Sunday. It is expected that summer hours will be extended.
A new pricing structure will begin on June 30, 2020. Until that time, the site is free to visit.
Prices subject to change without notice.
Daniel Boone Homestead
You're just on the edge of the Philadelphia historic attractions, including Valley Forge, plus other sites of the American Revolution. Even closer by are unique sites about the Pennsylvania frontier and iron forges, including Hopewell Furnace, Joanna Furnace, and others lost to history, Reading and Warwick Forges. And if you like to walk in unique deep forests that don't seem like this part of Pennsylvania, there's Nolde Forest not too far away.