John Pritiskutch Reproductions

History of Berks County - Albany Township

The following is reproduced from the 1876 Atlas of Berks County, Pennsylvania

Albany. Situated nearly north of Reading, is the most northern of the townships in Berks county. On account of the sterility of its soil, it bore, for many years, the name of "Allemeangel" -all-wants. The surface of the land is hilly. The soil is shaly in the north-western portion and
sandy in the south eastern. Throughout the township the land is of inferior quality, although fair crops are obtained by the industrious farmers.

The Maiden Creek, with its various tributaries, affords abundant facilities for milling. The principal elevation of land is a mountain in the form of a sugar-loaf, rising to the height of one thousand feet.

Albany was settled at a very early period by Germans. In 1741 there were thirty-seven taxables in the township. An old log house on the Levan property is said to be 125 years old.

The Indians committed many barbarous and cruel murders in this section On the 14th of February, 1756, they killed two children of Frederick Reichselderfer and burnt his buildings, together with his grain and cattle. Thence they proceeded to the house of Jacob Gerhart and murdered nine persons. As the people of the neighboring township of Maxatawny were on their way to Albany to aid the inhabitants if necessary, they received intelligence of other murders. During the next, month a train of wagons was fired upon by the natives, who killed and scalped several persons and carried off the most valuable of their goods. Many are the thrilling stories told of narrow escapes fron the Indians, and of the cruelties inflicted by the merciless savages upon the persons of those who were unfortunate enough to fall into their power.

The prosperity of the township is likely to be greatly enhanced by the completion of the South Mountain & Boston R.R., now building, the main line of which crosses it. The inhabitants are dependent at present for railroad facilities on the Berks & Lehigh R. R., but a short time ago completed. Under the impetus of the excellent facilities soon to be opened for them, a bright, future is undoubtedly before them, from the development of the superior manufacturing sites which abound along the streams which find their sources in the Blue Ridge and its tributary hills.

In 1810, Albany had 996 inhabitants. At the last census there were 1.510.