~ Welcome ~
Ridley Township was first settled in 1643 by the Swedes in what is now Tinicum Township. The name Ridley was first used in 1687 named by John Simcock a large landowner for his village in Cheshire, England. Tinicum township left Ridley in 1790 and for the next 80 years it was mostly farm land with some mills and quarry operations. The population in 1870 was just over 1100 people. A new railroad line the Darby improvement came thru in 1872 establishing the towns of Eddystone, Ridley Park, Prospect Park, Norwood, Glenolden and Rutledge. All of these towns left Ridley Township between 1887 and 1894.
Ridley Township became a first class township in March of 1906 and consists of 5.18 square miles and today's population is 30,500. The first known mention of a school in Ridley Township was in the August 22, 1778 issue of the Pennsylvania Packet Newspaper. To see more documents on Ridley Township click here.
The Historian for this website is Keith Lockhart a lifelong Ridley resident of the area. A graduate of Penn State University he is currently a Ridley Township Police Officer. He has written numerous booklets on the history of the area and for years wrote a history column for Towntalk. He has contributed to both the Philadelphia Inquirer and the Daily Times. In 30 years of collecting Keith has amassed one of the largest collections of Delaware County historical memorabilia.
If you are a serious researcher Keith has many rare books and booklets on Delaware County history that are not available anywhere else. These booklets run from the Delaware County Society to Detect Horse Thieves in 1850 to prospectus's for Delco businesses. He also has a large collection of maps, plus some 3500 plus pictures of Delaware County before 1950. Please e-mail Keith with specific research requests or if you have any other questions please e-mail Keith Lockhart. Contributing help with Keith Lockhart is Delaware County web designer Aaron Neal putting the stunning touch to our townships' website. Make sure to Sign or View our Guest Book!
COMMUNITIES MAKING UP RIDLEY TOWNSHIP (Then):
If you are searching for more information on Ridley Township, click the above link for the main page on Ridley Township.
Established in 1873 Ridley Park was incorporated and left Ridley Township on December 12, 1887. This site will feature records of Ridley Park till about 1915. Today Ridley Park is a separate Boro and is 1.04 square miles and has a population of 7400. This site is not associated with the Ridley Park Historical Society.
Started in September of 1874 by John Cochran and James Shedwick the town was names for the "Prospect Hill" where the Baptist Church now stands. The town was incorporated on May 7, 1894 and left Ridley Township. Today Prospect Park is .73 square miles and has a population of 6,600.
Named for the book "Norwood" or village life in England by Henry Beecher, Norwood was established in 1873 and was incorporated November 6, 1893 as a separate Boro. This site will eventually feature census and photo and information etc. Today Norwood is .98 square miles and has a population of 6,650.
Named for the Eddystone Lighthouse in England by the Simpson family who established Ýthe Eddystone Printworks there in 1876. Originally a company town of just two streets, the town left Ridley Township in late1888. Today Eddystone is .96 square miles and has a population of 2500.
Founded in 1885 the Boro was incorporated in 1887.It is one of the smallest Boros in the state and has a population of 940. The size of Rutledge is .15 square miles.
COMMUNITIES MAKING UP RIDLEY TOWNSHIP (Today):