What we (now) know about Pennsylvania

We have now crossed into the fourth state of our trip, so here’s a little bit about Pennsylvania.

Pennsylvania is the 33rd most extensive and the 6th most populous state of the USA. It is one of the 13 original founding states. As of 2006, Pennsylvania has an estimated population of 12,440,621. It has a Republican governor, 1 Democrat and 1 Republican senator and 13 of 18 congressman are Republican.

If Pennsylvania were an independent country, its economy would rank as the 18th largest in the world. Pennsylvania ranks 19th overall in agricultural production, but 1st in mushrooms, 2nd in apples, and 3rd in Christmas trees. The U.S. chocolate industry is centered in Hershey, Pennsylvania, with Mars, Godiva, and the Wilbur Chocolate Company nearby, and smaller manufacturers such as Asher’s[123] in Souderton, and Gertrude Hawk of Dunmore.

Not a lot of people know that there is a connection between our home town Bristol and Pennsylvania. Admiral Sir William Penn, the father of William Penn (pictured) from who the state was named lived and was buried in Redcliffe Bristol. Here’s the history behind the naming of Pennsylvania:

On February 28, 1681, Charles II granted a land charter to William Penn to repay a debt of £16,000[28] (around £2,100,000 in 2008, adjusting for retail inflation) owed to William’s father, Admiral William Penn. This was one of the largest land grants to an individual in history. It was called Pennsylvania. William Penn, who wanted it called New Wales or Sylvania, was embarrassed at the change, fearing that people would think he had named it after himself, but King Charles would not rename the grant. Penn established a government with two innovations that were much copied in the New World: the county commission and freedom of religious conviction.

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