MONROE County, PA
Monroe County is a county in the U.S. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. As of the 2010 census, the population was 168,327. Its county seat is Stroudsburg. The county was formed from sections of Northampton and Pike counties on April 1, 1836. Named in honor of James Monroe, the fifth president of the United States, the county is located in northeastern Pennsylvania, along its border with New Jersey. Monroe County is coterminous with the East Stroudsburg, PA Metropolitan Statistical Area. It also borders the Wyoming Valley, the Lehigh Valley and has connections to the Delaware Valley and the Tri-State Area being a part of New York City's Designated Media Market, but also receiving media from the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre and Philadelphia areas.
The county is home to East Stroudsburg University. For many recent decades, Monroe County was one of the fastest-growing counties in the state of Pennsylvania, partially due to tourism, and partially due to transplants from the New York City Area desiring a lower cost of living while still being close enough to commute to work in the city. The population increased by over 70% from 1990 to 2010, and the commercial and retail sectors expanded significantly, although population growth has since slowed.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of , of which is land and (1.5%) is water. It has a humid continental climate (Dfb except for some Dfa in the southern and SE tiers) and the hardiness zone ranges from 5a to 6b. The area code is 570, except in the southwest where the Kunkletown exchange uses 610.
National protected areas
As of the census of 2010, there were 169,842 people, 49,454 households, and 36,447 families residing in the county. The population density was 228 people per square mile (88/km2). There were 67,581 housing units at an average density of 111 per square mile (43/km2). The racial makeup of the county was 70.5% White Non-Hispanic, 13.2% Black or African American, 0.3% Native American, 2.1% Asian, 0.03% Pacific Islander, 4.3% from other races, and 2.9% from two or more races. 13.1% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 19.9% were of German, 16.8% Irish, 14.5% Italian, 8.8% Pennsylvania German, 5.4% Polish, 5.1% American and 5.1% English ancestry.
There were 49,454 households, out of which 36.20% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 60.70% were married couples living together, 8.80% had a female householder with no husband present, and 26.30% were non-families. 20.20% of all households were made up of individuals, and 7.80% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.73 and the average family size was 3.16.
In the county, the population was spread out, with 26.80% under the age of 18, 8.60% from 18 to 24, 28.80% from 25 to 44, 23.50% from 45 to 64, and 12.30% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 37 years. For every 100 females there were 97.60 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 94.40 males.
Metropolitan Statistical Area
The United States Office of Management and Budget has designated Monroe County of Pennsylvania as the East Stroudsburg, PA Metropolitan Statistical Area. As of the 2010 census the Metro area had a population of 169,842. The area ranks 12th most populous in the state of Pennsylvania and ranks 244th most populous in the United States.
The United States Office of Management and Budget has also designated Monroe County as part of the larger New York–Newark, NY–NJ–CT–PA Combined Statistical Area. The larger combined area once consisted of the Pennsylvania Counties in the Lehigh Valley, which are Carbon, Lehigh and Northampton, but as of 2018, only Monroe County and Pike County are the only two counties in Pennsylvania grouped with New York's CSA. As of the 2010 US Census, the population of the CSA was 23,076,664, making it the most populous Combined Statistical Area in the United States.
For much of the second half of the 20th century, Monroe County was a Republican stronghold. However, in recent years, party registration has leaned toward the Democratic Party, a result of continued migration to the county by former New York City residents, many of whom are Democrats. While in the 2004 U.S. presidential election the county was carried by Republican George W. Bush by a margin of four votes, beginning with the first campaign (2008) of Barack Obama, Democratic candidates carried Monroe County. In that election Obama carried the county by a 17-point margin, 58% to 41%–the first Democrat to win the county since 1964, and only the second since 1940. The other three 2008 statewide Democratic candidates also carried the county handily. Additionally, the Democratic presidential candidates carried the county in 2012 (Obama), 2016 (Hillary Clinton), and 2020 (Joe Biden).
As of November 1, 2021, there are 113,470 registered voters in Monroe County.
[http://www.monroecountypa.gov/Dept/Commissioners/Pages/About-our-Administration.aspx County commissioners]
Other county offices
United States Representatives
United States Senators
Public transportation throughout the county is provided by the Monroe County Transit Authority (MCTA), known as the "Pocono Pony". MCTA operates a fixed route bus system and a paratransit curb to curb service for eligible populations.
New Jersey Transit is restoring train tracks in northwestern New Jersey along the Lackawanna Cut-off. This would, potentially, also involve the train to go to Scranton from Hoboken (which would go through the Poconos), marking the first time since the early 1970s when the Erie Lackawanna Railroad stopped running daily trains through the area.
thumb|right|275px|Map of Monroe County, Pennsylvania Public School Districts
Colleges and universities
Public school districts
Private schools are as reported in EdNA school database maintained and published by the Pennsylvania Department of Education, 2011
The Tobyhanna Army Depot, the US Department of Defense's largest center for the repair and fabrication of electronic systems, is located in Monroe County. It was identified in 2004 as the largest employer in northeastern Pennsylvania.
The US headquarters for Sanofi Pasteur, a vaccine manufacturer, is also in Monroe County. The facility was originally established in 1897 by Brooklyn native Richard M. Slee as the Pocono Biological Laboratories. It was the first and only company in the United States to produce a new glycerolized smallpox vaccine from France and, in 1898, it provided all of the vaccines used in Cuba during the Spanish–American War.
Parks and trails
The Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area, which "includes nearly 70,000 acres of mountains, valleys and floodplains," is partially located in Monroe County. The county also has Pennsylvania state parks, such as Big Pocono State Park and parts of the Delaware State Forest, Gouldsboro State Park, and Tobyhanna State Park.
The Appalachian Trail passes through Monroe County. David Pierce wrote in the Pocono Record, "The 2,184-mile public footpath—from Georgia to Maine—has a particularly scenic but rugged section that straddles Monroe County’s southern border..." He stated that "trail hiking has long been an integral part of Monroe County's identity..."
During the Revolutionary War in 1779, General John Sullivan marched his troops through Monroe County on their expedition to fight the Iroquois tribe in New York State. There are many historical markers identifying the Sullivan Trail. Sergeant Moses Fellows of the Third New Hampshire Regiment described the area as "...very poor & Barren and I think as never will Be Settled.”
The Long Pond Conservation Easement has over 10,000 acres of public access land with numerous trail systems. It's one of the most extensive public access trail systems in Monroe County.
Dixon Miller State Forest – this is an extensive trail system in Long Pond, PA.
Jonas Mountain Nature Preserve is over 300 acres of Trail system that encompasses an old mountain ridge, and Jonas Creek.
Cherry Valley National Wildlife Refuge has elaborate Trail systems, and public access.
Mount Wismer is a scenic hike in Monroe County.
Nothstein Preserve is an elaborate wooded trail system in the Poconos
Chestnut mountain nature preserve is a many acre preserve atop the Plateau.
Two of the earliest Pocono resorts, founded by rival factions of the Philadelphia Quaker community, were located in Monroe County: Inn at Buck Hill Falls (1901) and Pocono Manor (1902). These resorts did not allow liquor or dancing, and evening dress was discouraged. The Quakers "brought a quiet, unostentatious style to the region," but their hotels later developed from religious retreats into "luxurious mountain resorts." Buck Hill's stone facade became a model for close to 300 stately stone-and-shingle homes in the region. Pocono Manor offers sweeping vistas of the eastern and western Pocono region and has been referred to as the "Grand Lady of the Mountains." Buck Hill closed in 1990 and the Inn at Pocono Manor was mostly destroyed by fire in 2019.
Skytop Lodge, built in 1928, is also located in Monroe County and has been described as a "Dutch Colonial-style manor house." Designed in reaction to the Quaker resorts, it had a dance floor and served liquor in a basement bar. Skytop offers thirty miles of hiking trails, and the main building "is surrounded by 5,000 acres of wood, glacial bogs, hemlock gorges, beaver marshes, and cascading waterfalls."
The Buckwood Inn opened in Monroe County in 1911 and included the first golf course to be designed by renowned golf architect A. W. Tillinghast. Bandleader Fred Waring purchased the resort in 1943, renamed it the Shawnee Inn, and broadcast his radio shows from there. The Shawnee Inn is a Spanish colonial revival building with white-Moorish architecture and Spanish tiled roofs, and it was identified in the 1990s as the only resort on the banks of the Delaware River.
Mount Airy Lodge, which expanded from an eight-room inn into the largest Pocono resort, was located in Monroe County. It heavily advertised in the New York media market with the catchy jingle, "Beautiful Mount Airy Lodge." Headliners, such as Bob Hope, Milton Berle, and Connie Francis, performed in the Crystal Room, Mount Airy's 2,000-seat theater. Comedian Mickey Freeman said, "The food was lousy, but it was a legalized orgy." The 1,200 acre resort's heyday was in the 1960s and 1970s before closing in 2001. In October 2007 the Mount Airy Casino Resort opened on the site.
As of July 2015, there were three resorts in Monroe County with indoor water parks: Great Wolf Lodge, Aquatopia at Camelback Resort, and Kalahari Resort.
right|thumb|275px|Map of Monroe County, Pennsylvania with Municipal Labels showing Boroughs (red), Townships (white), and Census-designated places (blue).
Under Pennsylvania law, there are four types of incorporated municipalities: cities, boroughs, townships, and, in at most two cases, towns. The following cities, boroughs and townships are located in Monroe County:
Census-designated places are geographical areas designated by the U.S. Census Bureau for the purposes of compiling demographic data. They are not actual jurisdictions under Pennsylvania law.
The population ranking of the following table is based on the 2010 census of Monroe County.
† county seat
Monroe County has three major watersheds, all of which are part of the Delaware River Watershed.
The Brodhead Watershed, the Aquashicola Pohopoco Watershed, and the Tobyhanna Tunkhannock Watershed.
Pocono Plateau Region
According to the Trewartha climate classification system, the higher elevation Pocono Plateau Region of Monroe County has a Temperate Continental climate (Dc) with warm summers (b), cold winters (o) and year-around precipitation (Dcbo). Dcbo climates are characterized by at least one month having an average mean temperature ≤ , four to seven months with an average mean temperature ≥ , all months with an average mean temperature < and no significant precipitation difference between seasons. Although most summer days are comfortably humid on the Pocono Plateau, episodes of heat and high humidity can occur with heat index values > . Since 1981, the highest air temperature was on 07/15/1995, and the highest daily average mean dew point was on 08/01/2006. July is the peak month for thunderstorm activity which correlates with the average warmest month of the year. Since 1981, the wettest calendar day was on 09/30/2010. During the winter months, the plant hardiness zone is 5b with an average annual extreme minimum air temperature of . Since 1981, the coldest air temperature was on 01/21/1994. Episodes of extreme cold and wind can occur with wind chill values < . The average snowiest month is January which correlates with the average coldest month of the year. Ice storms and large snowstorms depositing ≥ of snow occur nearly every year, particularly during nor’easters from December through March.
Ridge and Valley Region
According to the Trewartha climate classification system, the lower elevation Ridge and Valley section of Monroe County has a Temperate Continental climate (Dc) with hot summers (a), cold winters (o) and year-around precipitation (Dcao). Dcao climates are characterized by at least one month having an average mean temperature ≤ , four to seven months with an average mean temperature ≥ , at least one month with an average mean temperature ≥ and no significant precipitation difference between seasons. Although most summer days are slightly humid in the Ridge and Valley, episodes of heat and high humidity can occur with heat index values > . Since 1981, the highest air temperature was on 07/22/2011, and the highest daily average mean dew point was on 08/01/2006. July is the peak month for thunderstorm activity which correlates with the average warmest month of the year. The average wettest month is September which correlates with tropical storm remnants during the peak of the Atlantic hurricane season. Since 1981, the wettest calendar day was on 10/08/2005. During the winter months, the plant hardiness zone is 6a with an average annual extreme minimum air temperature of . Since 1981, the coldest air temperature was on 01/21/1994. Episodes of extreme cold and wind can occur with wind chill values < . The average snowiest month is January which correlates with the average coldest month of the year. Ice storms and large snowstorms depositing ≥ of snow occur once every couple of years, particularly during nor’easters from December through March.
Long Pond is an inland freshwater wetland.
The Nature Conservancy's Hauser Nature Center is a destination for hiking and ecological tourism in Long Pond.
Pocono Plateau Region
According to the A. W. Kuchler U.S. potential natural vegetation types, the higher elevation Pocono Plateau Region of Monroe County would have a dominant vegetation type of Northern Hardwood (106) with a dominant vegetation form of Northern hardwood forest (26). The peak spring bloom typically occurs in early-May and peak fall color usually occurs in early-October. The plant hardiness zone is 5b with an average annual extreme minimum air temperature of .
Ridge and Valley Region
According to the A. W. Kuchler U.S. potential natural vegetation types, the lower elevation Ridge and Valley section of Monroe County would have a dominant vegetation type of Appalachian Oak (104) with a dominant vegetation form of Eastern Hardwood Forest (25). The peak spring bloom typically occurs in late-April and peak fall color usually occurs in mid-October. The plant hardiness zone is 6a with an average annual extreme minimum air temperature of .
Glacial Till Barrens
Located in the vicinity of Big Pocono State Park, Blakeslee, and Long pond. The Glacial Till Barrens are best exeplified by the Long Pond Conservation Easement. Which has public access trail systems. Glacial Till Barrens are found in Dixon Miller State Forest, and within the Bethlehem Authority property. One of the only such ecosystems in the entire state of Pennsylvania. The Glacial till barrens are mesic (meaning moist), and yet have species that are more typical of far northern climates.
This page uses material from the Wikipedia article Monroe County, PA, which is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 4.0.