Preserving Upper Merion's Past To Enlighten Its Future
King of Prussia Historical Society

Our Mission
To preserve and interpret the history of Upper Merion Township, and to stimulate public interest and to support the township’s heritage through educational programs and public events focusing on preserving the past and shaping the future.
What We’re Doing
Monthly Events – Held at Christ Church (Old Swedes) Upper Merion.

Register of Historic Places – Help us to identify places in need of preservation.

Digital Archive Project – We are digitizing our collection of maps, aerial photos and more.

Latest News – See what’s going on.

Facebook Page – Join the conversation!
How You Can Help
Become a member or renew – join the fine group of people learning, preserving and educating, and receive quarterly issues of the King of Prussia Gazette – our newsletter.

Donate via Paypal – help us in our mission; receive a thank you gift of a print of a panoramic photograph of King of Prussia for donations at a certain level.

Amazon Smile – Amazon donates to us every time you make a purchase.

Donate items of historical interest.

Volunteer – opportunities to help out are available.

Join our mailing list
Learn More
E-History Facts – See a list of the facts posted weekly on Facebook.

Educational Resources – A detailed list of resources on Upper Merion History.

Books & Publications – Read about Upper Merion’s 300 year history.

Digital Archive – Old maps, aerial photos and other items of historical interest.

The Gazette – Our monthly newsletter which includes articles on our local history.


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FRIDAY FACT: BUILDINGS TO BE TORN DOWN FOR HIGHWAY EXPANSION MET WITH RESISTANCE On February 19, 1952, the Philadelphia Evening Bulletin reported that as of press time, the state of Pennsylvania had ...

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On February 19, 1952, the Philadelphia Evening Bulletin reported that as of press time, the state of Pennsylvania had not yet settled with the owners of buildings slated to be torn down to widen roads and modify the intersection of US 202 and 23 (Gulph Road), in order to prepare for the influx of traffic expected with the completion of the PA Turnpike and the Schuylkill Expressway.

The buildings slated to be torn down were: Mike Estock’s Garage, William E Groff’s Filling station, and Ed Mack’s.

Days later, several papers around the country ran the AP story of Ed Mack's attempt to save his property from demolition until settlement could be made.

From the Philadelphia Inquirer, 23 Feb 1952

Workmen were on the job yesterday widening DeKalb Pike-Route 202- in King of Prussia, but they stayed clear of the property of Edward Mack, who warned that he would use his deer rifle, if necessary, to protect his holdings until officials make him a "suitable offer."

Mack owns a restaurant, an eight-room apartment and a gasoline station on a tract that lies in the path of the project to widen the highway as a link to the Pennsylvania Turnpike.

Armed with the rifle, Mack took up his vigil with his German shepard, Terry, to prevent the demolition of his buildings.

He crawled out of his sleeping bag on the ground floor of the larger structure, walked around the property and then returned inside to wait for relatives who brought him his breakfast.

Mack said he would not leave the property until some agreement is reached.

What the State's next move will be was in doubt. Highway Department officials were not available for comment, since the Capitol was closed because of Washington's Birthday.

In the meantime, workmen continued demolishing buildings all around Mack's place, preparing the ground for paving.

Workmen agreed that up to this point, Mack was not holding up the project. They said they had "many days" of work before it would become necessary to demolish the restaurant and gasoline station.

The State, Mack said, made him one offer. He accepted it, but officials changed their minds and refused to sign the papers.

"They just want to get me out of here so some politicians can set up a commercial center when the new road is built," he charged.

"I'll get off and let them take over when they give me what the place is worth, and it's worth plenty. Besides, I have to have money to start in business elsewhere."

The property, Mack said, could bring him about $1000 a month rent. Only a short time ago he began building a new gasoline station behind the present one. The new one, he said had been leased for 15 years.

"I can't stop the bulldozers with my bare hands, but when the first piece of equipment moves onto my property, I'll stop it with anything at my command," he said.
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From the Digital Archive
Visit our collection of images, audio files and documents – new material will continue to be added.