Lancaster Chamber Timeline

1730

Central Market begins

1770

The Demuth Tobacco Shop opens

1794

The Lancaster newspaper, now LNP, was founded

1832

The Strasburg Railroad is created

1855

Beginnings of Millersville University

1861

Julius Sturgis Pretzel Bakery is founded

1872

The Lancaster Chamber was founded

On the evening of July 22, a meeting was held at the Cooper Hotel on West King Street– it brought business and community leaders together to form the Board of Trade. Around 100 people turned out for the occasion. This began the Lancaster Chamber, founded with the idea that the power of a group is greater than that of an individual.

1873

The Fulton Theatre, then the Fulton Opera House, opened

1879

Frank W. Woolworth opened his five-and-dime store on Queen Street and Watt & Shand opened their New York Store on East King Street.

1886

The Wilbur Bud is created

1886-1900

Milton S. Hershey began and ran the Lancaster Caramel Company

1890s

Electric streetcar lines were built, connecting Lancaster City to the county boroughs.

1892

Hamilton Watch Company is founded

1893

Lancaster General Health hospital opens

Lancaster General Health hospital opens its doors at 322 North Queen Street in Lancaster.

1895

New Holland Tractor, now known as CNH, is founded

1896

Lancastrian John M. Mast invents the wood and spring mousetrap, which would later become one of Woodstream’s best-known products.

1905

Thaddeus Stevens college of Technology is founded

1906

Armstrong, Inc. moves headquarters from Pittsburgh to Lancaster, PA

1912

The Lancaster Chamber was one of the founding members of the United States Chamber of Commerce.

1919

The Board of Trade combined with the Retail Merchants Association to officially form the Lancaster Chamber of Commerce.

1920s

With philanthropy a growing and unique American concept, the Chamber helped to launch the Lancaster County Community Foundation.

1931

High Welding Company is founded, now High Companies

1931

Turkey Hill is founded

1935

The Lancaster Airport is dedicated

1940s

The Chamber supported the war effort by working with manufacturers to develop a “United War Chest” to coordinate fundraising for the war effort and assist veterans in finding employment when they returned to the US.

1944

A mill is purchased for the start of Wenger Feeds

1946

Ten Thousand Villages is founded, the start of the Fair Trade Movement

1949

WGAL is founded

1950s

The Lancaster Chamber launched the beginnings of what we know today as Discover Lancaster.

1954

Kitchen Kettle Village begins

1960

The Lancaster Chamber started what has now become the Economic Development Company (EDC).

1963

Dutch Wonderland officially opens

1964

Community Action Partnership of Lancaster County is founded

1966

Clair Global is founded, and the Live Event Industry in Lancaster County begins

1970s

The Chamber begins to offer professional development programs, special events, value added products, and networking as a way to connect and train the local business community.

1971

Park City Center opens

1972

Eden Resort & Suite opens

1977

The Lancaster Chamber of Commerce and the Lancaster Area Manufacturer’s Association merge to become The Lancaster Association of Commerce as the new brand.

1984

The first Willow Valley Community opens

1986

Leadership Lancaster beings programming as partnership of the Lancaster Chamber and Junior League of Lancaster.

1988

The Lancaster Chamber partners with the City of Lancaster to renovate the Southern Market Building, making it the Chamber’s new office space.

1997

The Lancaster Chamber celebrates 125 years and hosts Colin Powell, 65th United States Secretary of State, at the Annual Dinner.

2003

Lancaster Chamber wins national Chamber Of The Year through the Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives.

2005

Clipper Magazine Stadium, Home of the Lancaster Barnstormers opens its gates.

2009

The Lancaster Marriott at Penn Square and the Lancaster County Convention Center opens.

2013

Lancaster Chamber wins national Chamber Of The Year through the Association of Chamber of Commerce Executives.

2013

Spooky Nook Sports opens

2014

Rock Lititz opens in Lititz, combining the efforts and creating a campus for the Live Event Industry to thrive.

2016

Lancaster Chamber drops ‘’of Commerce’’ from name and logo.

2017

The Lancaster Chamber creates $7 million Capital Campaign and moves office to 115 E. King Street Lancaster, PA.

2020

Lancaster Chamber, Economic Development Company of Lancaster County, and the County of Lancaster develop the Recovery Lancaster project focused on providing funds and other resources for businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic.

2022

Lancaster Chamber celebrates their 150th Anniversary

Engage

Our history is your history – we wouldn’t exist without the continued
support of business community over the last 150 years. We encourage you to be
a part of the celebration this year.

Tell Your Story

Our history, is your history – tell us about your company. Take this short survey and be spotlighted on Chamber social media!

150th Commemorative Thriving Magazine

Check out our 150th Anniversary: Special Edition of Thriving Magazine!

Digital Article Series

Check out the most recent installments in our Digital Article Series!

Events

Join the Lancaster Chamber in celebrating 150 years of Impact at these upcoming events.

Annual Dinner

June 23, 2022
4:00-9:00pm
Lancaster County Convention Center

Founder’s Day

July 22, 2022
5:00-9:00pm
Lancaster Chamber

LancasterHistory Mixer

September 21, 2022
5:00-7:00pm
LancasterHistory

View All

Presenting Sponsor

Champion Sponsors

Catalyst Sponsors

Legacy Sponsors

Armstrong Flooring

Certified Carpet

CNH New Holland

Community Action Partnership

Conrad Siegel

Ephrata National Bank

Everence 

Godfrey

Grudi 

Murray

Rhoads Energy

RKL LLP

Stifel Investment Services – Scudner Group

TriStarr 

Warfel Construction

Wellspan Health

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