Bucks County
Bucks County Administration Building in Doylestown in 2010
Bucks County Administration Building in Doylestown in 2010
Flag of Bucks County
Official logo of Bucks County
Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Bucks County
Location within the U.S. state of Pennsylvania
Map of the United States highlighting Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania's location within the U.S.
Coordinates: 40°20′N 75°07′W / 40.34°N 75.11°W / 40.34; -75.11
Country United States
State Pennsylvania
FoundedNovember 1682
Named forBuckinghamshire
SeatDoylestown
Largest townshipBensalem
Area
 • Total622 sq mi (1,610 km2)
 • Land604 sq mi (1,560 km2)
 • Water18 sq mi (50 km2)  2.8%
Population
 (2020)
 • Total646,538
 • Density1,070/sq mi (410/km2)
Time zoneUTC−5 (Eastern)
 • Summer (DST)UTC−4 (EDT)
Congressional district1st
Websitewww.buckscounty.gov
DesignatedOctober 29, 1982[1]
Map
Interactive map of Bucks County, Pennsylvania

Bucks County is a county in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. As of the 2020 census, the population was 646,538,[2] making it the fourth-most populous county in Pennsylvania. Its county seat is Doylestown.[3] The county is named after the English county of Buckinghamshire.

The county represents the northern boundary of the PhiladelphiaCamdenWilmington, PA–NJDEMD metropolitan statistical area, known as the Delaware Valley.

To its southwest, Bucks County borders Montgomery County and Philadelphia, the nation's sixth-largest city. To its east, the county borders the Delaware River and U.S. state of New Jersey. To its north, the county borders Lehigh and Northampton counties in the state's Lehigh Valley region. The county is approximately 30 miles (48 km) southeast of Allentown, the state's third-largest city, and 40 miles (64 km) north of Philadelphia, the state's largest city.

History

Founding

Mercer Museum in Doylestown

Bucks County is one of the three original counties created by colonial proprietor William Penn in 1682. Penn named the county after Buckinghamshire, the county in which he lived in England; "Bucks." is the traditional abbreviation for the English county, which became the actual name of the Pennsylvania one. He built a country estate, Pennsbury Manor, in Falls Township in present-day Bucks County.

Some places in Bucks County were named after locations in Buckinghamshire, England, including Buckingham and Buckingham Township, named after the former county town of Buckinghamshire; Chalfont, named after Chalfont St Giles, the parish home of William Penn's first wife and the location of the Jordans Quaker Meeting House, where Penn is buried; Solebury, named after Soulbury, England; and Wycombe, named after the town of High Wycombe.

Bucks County was originally much larger than it is today. Northampton County was formed in 1752 from part of Bucks County, and Lehigh County was formed in 1812 from part of Northampton County.

American Revolutionary War

See also: George Washington's crossing of the Delaware River

General George Washington and his troops camped in Bucks County as they prepared to cross the Delaware River to take Trenton, New Jersey, by surprise on the morning of December 26, 1776. Their successful attack on Britain's Hessian forces was a turning point in the American Revolutionary War. The town of Washington Crossing, Pennsylvania and Washington Crossing Historic Park were named to commemorate the event.

Geography

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 622 square miles (1,610 km2), of which 604 square miles (1,560 km2) is land and 18 square miles (47 km2) (2.8%) is water.[4]

The southern third of the county between Philadelphia and Trenton, New Jersey, often called Lower Bucks, resides in the Atlantic Coastal Plain; it is flat and near sea level, and is the county's most populated and industrialized area.

Bucks County shares a western border with Montgomery County, and also borders Philadelphia to the southwest, and Northampton and Lehigh Counties to the north. From north to south, it is linked to Warren, Hunterdon, Mercer and Burlington Counties in New Jersey by bridges.

Tohickon Creek and Neshaminy Creek are the largest tributaries of the Delaware in Bucks County. Tohickon Creek empties into the river at Point Pleasant and Neshaminy at Croydon (Bristol Township).

Adjacent counties

Demographics

Historical population
CensusPop.Note
179025,216
180027,4969.0%
181032,37117.7%
182037,84216.9%
183045,74520.9%
184048,1075.2%
185056,09116.6%
186063,57813.3%
187064,3361.2%
188068,6566.7%
189070,6152.9%
190071,1900.8%
191076,5307.5%
192082,4767.8%
193096,72717.3%
1940107,71511.4%
1950144,62034.3%
1960308,567113.4%
1970410,05632.9%
1980479,21116.9%
1990541,17412.9%
2000597,63510.4%
2010625,2494.6%
2020646,5383.4%
U.S. Decennial Census[5]
1790-1960[6] 1900-1990[7]
1990-2000[8] 2010-2019[9]

As of the 2010 census, there were 625,249 people. The population density was 1,034.7 people per square mile. The racial makeup of the county was 86.6% Non-Hispanic white, 3.9% Black or African American, 0.3% Native American, 4.1% Asian (2.1% Indian, 1.1% Chinese, 0.7% Korean, 0.5% Filipino, 0.3% Vietnamese, 0.1% Japanese, 0.4% other Asian) 0.1% Pacific Islander, 1.7% were of two or more races, and 1.5% were of other races. 4.4% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race.

As of the census[10] of 2000, there were 218,725 households, and 160,981 families residing in the county. There were 225,498 housing units at an average density of 371 per square mile (143/km2). 20.1% were of German, 19.1% Irish, 14.0% Italian, 7.5% English and 5.9% Polish ancestry.

There were 218,725 households, out of which 35.30% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 61.20% were married couples living together, 8.80% had a female householder with no husband present, and 26.40% were non-families. 21.50% of all households were made up of individuals, and 8.10% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.69 and the average family size was 3.17.

In the county, the population was spread out, with 25.70% under the age of 18, 7.00% from 18 to 24, 30.70% from 25 to 44, 24.30% from 45 to 64, and 12.40% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females there were 96.30 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 93.40 males.

The median income for a household in the county was $59,727, and the median income for a family was $68,727. Males had a median income of $46,587 versus $31,984 for females. The per capita income for the county was $27,430. About 3.10% of families and 4.50% of the population were below the poverty line, including 4.80% of those under age 18 and 5.50% of those age 65 or over.

Population growth

Growth began in the early 1950s, when William Levitt chose Bucks County for his second "Levittown". Levitt bought hundreds of acres of woodlands and farmland, and constructed 17,000 homes and dozens of schools, parks, libraries, and shopping centers. By the time the project was completed, the population of Levittown had swelled to nearly 74,000 residents. At the time, only whites could buy homes. This rule however, was soon overturned. Other planned developments included Croydon and Fairless Hills. This rapid sprawl continued until the mid-1960s.

In the 1970s, the county experienced a second growth spurt as developers expanded in previously underdeveloped townships, including Middletown, Lower Makefield, Northampton, and Newtown townships. Tract housing, office complexes, shopping centers, and sprawling parking lots continued to move more and more towards Upper Bucks, swallowing horse farms, sprawling forests, and wetlands. Oxford Valley Mall was constructed in Middletown, and became a retail nucleus in the county.

In the late 20th century, growth somewhat stabilized as development was completed in the county's historically underdeveloped areas, leaving little new area to be further developed.

Bucks County areas along the Delaware River have surpluses of abandoned industry, so many municipalities have granted building rights to luxury housing developers. As the regions that began the suburban boom in Bucks County, such as Levittown, have aged, commercial strips and other neglected structures have been torn down and replaced with new shopping plazas and commercial chains. With rising property values, areas with older construction are undergoing a renaissance, and Central and Upper Bucks have continued to experience rapid growth, with many municipalities doubling their populations since the late 20th century.

As of 2013, the population of Bucks County was 626,976, making it the fourth-most populous county county in the state behind Philadelphia, Allegheny, and Montgomery counties.[9]

2020 census

Bucks County Racial Composition[11]
Race Num. Perc.
White (NH) 521,575 80.67%
Black or African American (NH) 25,277 4%
Native American (NH) 531 0.08%
Asian (NH) 35,053 5.42%
Pacific Islander (NH) 143 0.02%
Other/Mixed (NH) 24,189 3.74%
Hispanic or Latino 39,770 6.15%

Economy

Aerial view of Levittown, c. 1959

The boroughs of Bristol and Morrisville were prominent industrial centers along the Northeast Corridor during World War II. Suburban development accelerated in Lower Bucks in the 1950s with the opening of Levittown, Pennsylvania, the second such "Levittown" designed by William Levitt.

Among Bucks' largest employers in the twentieth century were U.S. Steel in Falls Township, and the Vulcanized Rubber & Plastics and Robertson Tile companies in Morrisville. Rohm and Haas continues to operate several chemical plants around Bristol. Waste Management operates a landfill in Tullytown that is the largest receptacle of out-of-state waste in the USA (receiving much of New York City's waste following the closure of Fresh Kills landfill in Staten Island, NY 40 miles (64 km) away).[citation needed]

Bucks is also experiencing rapid growth in biotechnology, along with neighboring Montgomery County. The Greater Philadelphia area consistently ranks in the top 10 geographic clusters for biotechnology and biopharma.[12] It is projected by 2020 that one out of four people in Bucks County will work in biotechnology.

Notable businesses

Tourism

Schofield Ford Covered Bridge over Neshaminy Creek in Tyler State Park; Bucks County has 12 covered bridges, ten of which are still open to highway traffic, and two of which are located in parks and open to non-vehicular traffic.
New Hope Railroad in New Hope

Another important asset of the county is tourism. The county's northern regions, colloquially referred to as Upper Bucks, are known for their natural scenery, farmland, colonial history, and proximity to major urban areas, including Philadelphia, New York City, Allentown, Reading, and Atlantic City, each of which is within a two-hour driving radius.

Bucks County is home to twelve covered bridges. Ten are still open to vehicular traffic; two others, located in parks, are open only to non-vehicular traffic. All Bucks County bridges use the Town truss design. Schofield Ford Bridge, in Tyler State Park, was reconstructed in 1997 from the ground up after arsonists destroyed the original in 1991.[13]

Popular attractions in Bucks County include the shops and studios of New Hope, Peddler's Village (in Lahaska), Washington Crossing Historic Park, New Hope Railroad, Bucks County River Country and Bucks County Playhouse Theater (in New Hope). Rice's Market near Lahaska is a popular destination on Tuesday mornings. Quakertown Farmer's Market (locally called "Q-Mart") is a popular shopping destination on weekends. The county seat of Doylestown has the trifecta of concrete structures built by Henry Chapman Mercer, including the Moravian Pottery and Tile Works, the Mercer Museum and Fonthill, Mercer's personal home.

Southern Bucks, colloquially referred to as Lower Bucks, is home to two important shopping malls, Neshaminy Mall, Oxford Valley Mall, and Sesame Place, a family theme park based on the Sesame Street television series. Also within Lower Bucks County is Parx Casino and Racing in Bensalem, a casino and thoroughbred horse racing track. The casino was built on the grounds of what was originally Philadelphia Park Racetrack. The complex includes the thoroughbred horse racing track, expansive casino, a dance club, numerous dining options, and the Xcite Center.

Education

Colleges and universities

Public school districts

Map of Bucks County public school districts

The Bucks County public schools listed above are served by a regional educational service agency called the Bucks County Intermediate Unit #22 located in the county seat of Doylestown.

Public charter schools

Private schools

Community, junior, and technical colleges

Libraries

The Bucks County Library System was founded in 1956 by a resolution of the Bucks County Commissioners.[15]

The Bucks County Library System is made up of 7 branch libraries in the following townships:

Arts and culture

Fine and performing arts

Many artists and writers based in New York City have called Bucks County home, settling mainly in the small stretch between Doylestown and New Hope and along the Delaware River. Notable residents have included Margaret Mead, Pearl S. Buck, Oscar Hammerstein II, Stephen Sondheim, Charlie Parker, Moss Hart, George S. Kaufman, James Michener, Dorothy Parker, S. J. Perelman, Stan and Jan Berenstain, Daniel Garber, Alfred Bester, Annie Haslam, and Jean Toomer. Bucks County has been the home of writer/musician James McBride, writer Eric Knight, Academy Award-winning film composer Joe Renzetti, musician Gene Ween of Ween, painter Christopher Wajda, photographer Michael Barone, and furniture designer George Nakashima. James Gould Cozzens lived in Lambertville, New Jersey, just across the river from Bucks County, and used Doylestown as the model for the setting of two novels; he is considered a Bucks County artist. Allen Saalburg relocated to Bucks County in 1947, and named his press after the canal.[16]

The county boasts many local theater companies, including the long-established and recently reopened Bucks County Playhouse in New Hope, Town and Country Players in Buckingham, ActorsNET in Morrisville, and the Bristol Riverside Theatre, a professional Equity theater in Bristol. The Bucks County Symphony, founded in 1953, performs in Doylestown throughout the year and the Bucks County Gilbert & Sullivan Society, founded in 2009, performs a Gilbert & Sullivan operetta with full orchestra each June.

The Wild River Review, an online magazine that publishes in-depth reporting, works of literature, art, visual art, reviews, interviews, and columns by and about contemporary artists, photographers, and writers, is based out of Doylestown.

Literature

The partially autobiographical novel The Fires of Spring by James Michener takes place in and around Doylestown.

Popular culture

Alecia Moore, more commonly known as Pink, was born in Doylestown, as was motion picture writer and director Stefan Avalos. Three American Idol contestants live in Bucks County: Justin Guarini, who was born in Atlanta, but moved to Bucks County; Jordan White, who was born in Cranford, New Jersey and moved to Bucks County; and Anthony Fedorov, who was born in Ukraine and was from Trevose, in Lower Southampton Township. Singer/actress Irene Molloy and classical tenor David Gordon were born in Doylestown. Musician Asher Roth was born in Morrisville. The Tony Award-winning Broadway play Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike is set in the county. The main members of the rock band Ween are from New Hope.[17]

Film

Media

Local print publications include Bucks County Courier Times, The Intelligencer, The Advance of Bucks County, Bucks County Herald, Bucks County Town and Country Living, Radius Magazine, Yardley Voice, Morrisville Times, Newtown Gazette, Northampton Herald, Langhorne Ledger, Lower Southampton Spirit, New Hope News, Doylestown Observer, Warwick Journal, Fairless Focus. Online news publications are Levittown Now, Bucks County Beacon, NewtownPANow, Bucks Happening, New Hope Free Press. WBCB is a local radio news station.

Sports

Rugby league

The Bucks County Sharks rugby league team played in the AMNRL from 1997 to 2010 season.[27] They returned to play in the AMNRL in 2011, until the league's fold in 2014, when they subsequently joined the USARL.[28]

Little League

The county has a considerable history of producing Little League baseball contenders. Since its inception in 1947, four of the seven Pennsylvania teams to compete in the Little League World Series in Williamsport, Pennsylvania have come from Bucks County: Morrisville (1955), Levittown American (1960 and 1961), and Council Rock-Newtown (2005). Two of these squads, Morrisville and Levittown (1960), went on to win the World Series title. In 2007, Council Rock Northampton won the PA State championship, and lost in the finals of regionals.

PIAA

The county is a part of PIAA's District I, and has seen many schools capture multiple state titles.

American Legion baseball

In 1996, Yardley Western Post 317 won the American Legion National Championship.

Bristol Legion Post 382 recently won the 2011 American Legion State Championship.

Horse racing

Parks and recreation

Pennsylvania state parks

Neshaminy Creek in Tyler State Park

There are six Commonwealth-owned parks in Bucks County:

County parks

Lake Galena in Peace Valley Park

Historic properties

Pennsbury Manor in Falls Township

County recreation sites

County nature centers

Transportation

Airports

Air transportation facilities available in or close to Bucks County include:

Public transportation

Major roads and highways

I-95 northbound at its interchange with I-295 and I-276/Pennsylvania Turnpike in Bucks County

Politics and government

United States presidential election results for Bucks County, Pennsylvania[34]
Year Republican Democratic Third party
No.  % No.  % No.  %
2020 187,367 47.16% 204,712 51.53% 5,212 1.31%
2016 164,361 47.64% 167,060 48.42% 13,621 3.95%
2012 156,579 48.74% 160,521 49.97% 4,166 1.30%
2008 150,248 45.08% 179,031 53.71% 4,045 1.21%
2004 154,469 48.30% 163,438 51.10% 1,909 0.60%
2000 121,927 46.29% 132,914 50.46% 8,581 3.26%
1996 94,899 41.74% 103,313 45.44% 29,151 12.82%
1992 94,584 38.06% 97,902 39.40% 56,021 22.54%
1988 127,563 59.99% 82,472 38.78% 2,605 1.23%
1984 130,119 63.25% 74,568 36.25% 1,032 0.50%
1980 100,536 55.49% 59,120 32.63% 21,508 11.87%
1976 85,628 50.69% 79,838 47.26% 3,457 2.05%
1972 99,684 62.28% 56,784 35.48% 3,591 2.24%
1968 69,646 48.63% 57,634 40.24% 15,931 11.12%
1964 50,243 38.89% 78,287 60.60% 646 0.50%
1960 67,501 53.95% 57,177 45.70% 438 0.35%
1956 59,862 60.72% 38,541 39.09% 180 0.18%
1952 40,753 62.38% 24,301 37.20% 275 0.42%
1948 29,411 62.46% 16,655 35.37% 1,018 2.16%
1944 25,634 58.62% 17,823 40.76% 270 0.62%
1940 25,169 54.73% 20,586 44.77% 229 0.50%
1936 23,860 48.80% 24,159 49.41% 876 1.79%
1932 22,331 59.07% 14,135 37.39% 1,341 3.55%
1928 28,421 76.47% 8,446 22.72% 301 0.81%
1924 17,460 66.88% 6,582 25.21% 2,066 7.91%
1920 14,130 65.17% 6,867 31.67% 684 3.15%
1916 9,269 53.97% 7,491 43.62% 414 2.41%
1912 5,452 32.00% 6,773 39.75% 4,812 28.24%
1908 9,409 55.33% 7,233 42.54% 362 2.13%
1904 9,572 57.73% 6,719 40.52% 290 1.75%
1900 9,263 55.13% 7,287 43.37% 253 1.51%
1896 9,798 57.61% 6,685 39.31% 524 3.08%
1892 8,230 48.72% 8,390 49.67% 272 1.61%
1888 8,584 49.11% 8,642 49.44% 253 1.45%
1884 8,191 48.47% 8,604 50.92% 103 0.61%
1880 8,385 49.19% 8,627 50.61% 35 0.21%

Like most of the Philadelphia suburbs, Bucks County was once a stronghold for the Republican Party. However, in recent years it has become more of a swing county, like Pennsylvania at large.

In presidential elections, Bucks County has been swept up in the overall Democratic trend that has swept the Philadelphia area, although the trend in Bucks has been less pronounced than in Delaware and Montgomery counties. It has gone Democratic in every presidential election since 1992, though by a margin of less than 5% in each except for 2008, with three of those eight elections decided by less than 2% (1992, 2012, and 2016). Prior to this Republicans won the county all but thrice between 1896 and 1988 (except in 1912, 1936, and 1964). Unlike most other suburban Philadelphia counties, Bucks County consistently voted Democratic during the Civil War era, only voting Republican twice between 1856 and 1892, in 1860 and 1872.

The executive government is run by a three-seat board of commissioners, one member of which serves as chairperson. Commissioners are elected through at-large voting and serve four-year terms. In cases of vacancy, a panel of county judges appoints members to fill seats. The current commissioners are Diane M. Ellis-Marseglia (D) (chairwoman), Robert "Bob" J. Harvie Jr. (D) (Vice-chairman), and Gene DiGirolamo (R). The current terms expire in January 2028.[35] In 2012, four county employees were sentenced for compensating public employees for political work on behalf of Republican candidates.[36]

Bucks County is represented in U.S. Congress by Pennsylvania's 1st congressional district, (map) formerly numbered as the 8th District. The district is represented by Brian Fitzpatrick (R), making this district one of 18 nationwide to be held by a Republican and won by Joe Biden in 2020.

In the 2016 elections, Democrats Hillary Clinton (President), Josh Shapiro (Attorney General), and Joe Torsella (State Treasurer) won Bucks County while Republicans Pat Toomey (U.S. Senate), Brian Fitzpatrick (U.S. Representative), and John Brown (Auditor General) won Bucks County in their respective races.[37]

Voter registration

Chart of Voter Registration

  Democratic (41.68%)
  Republican (41.35%)
  Independent (12.48%)
  Other Parties (4.49%)

As of April 29, 2024, there are 474,753 registered voters in Bucks County.[38]

County commissioners

County row officers

Office[39] Official Party Term ends
Clerk of Courts Eileen Hartnett Albillar Democratic 2027
Controller Pamela A. Van Blunk Republican 2025
Coroner Patti Campi Democratic 2027
Treasurer Kris Ballerini Democratic 2027
District Attorney Jennifer Schorn Republican 2025
Prothonotary Coleen Christian Republican 2025
Recorder of Deeds Daniel "Dan" McPhillips Republican 2025
Register of Wills Linda Bobrin Democratic 2027
Sheriff Frederick "Fred" A. Harran Republican 2025

Law enforcement

The current Bucks County Sheriff is Frederick "Fred" A. Harran.[40] Three members of the Sheriff's Office have died in the line of duty. One was shot and two others died in traffic accidents. The first, Sheriff Abram Kulp was murdered in February 1927.[41]

State senate

District Senator Party
6 Frank Farry Republican
10 Steve Santarsiero Democratic
16 Jarrett Coleman Republican

State House of Representatives

District Representative Party
18 Kathleen C. Tomlinson Republican
29 Tim Brennan Democratic
31 Perry Warren Democratic
140 Jim Prokopiak Democratic
141 Tina Davis Democratic
142 Joe Hogan Republican
143 Shelby Labs Republican
144 Brian Munroe Democratic
145 Craig Staats Republican
178 Kristin Marcell Republican

United States House of Representatives

District Representative Party
1 Brian Fitzpatrick Republican

United States Senate

Senator Party
Bob Casey Democratic
John Fetterman Democratic

Communities

Map of Bucks County, Pennsylvania with municipal labels showing boroughs (in red), townships (in white), and census-designated places (in blue)

Under Pennsylvania law, there are four types of incorporated municipalities: cities, boroughs, townships, and, in at most two cases, towns. The most populous borough in the county is Morrisville with 10,023 as of the 2000 census. The following boroughs and townships are located in Bucks County:

Boroughs

Townships

Census-designated places

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. Other unincorporated communities, such as villages, may be listed here as well.

Unincorporated communities

‡This populated place also has portions in an adjacent county or counties

Historic communities

Police agencies and services

Population ranking

The population ranking of the following table is based on the 2010 census of Bucks County.[42]

county seat

Rank City/Town/etc. Municipal type Population (2010 Census)
1 Bensalem Township 60,427
2 Levittown CDP 52,983
3 Croydon CDP 9,950
4 Bristol Borough 9,726
5 Quakertown Borough 8,979
6 Morrisville Borough 8,728
7 Perkasie Borough 8,511
8 Fairless Hills CDP 8,466
9 Doylestown Borough 8,380
10 Richboro CDP 6,563
11 Telford (lies partially in Montgomery County) Borough 4,872
12 Sellersville Borough 4,249
13 Churchville CDP 4,128
14 Warminster Heights CDP 4,124
15 Chalfont Borough 4,009
16 Village Shires CDP 3,949
17 Woodbourne CDP 3,851
18 Brittany Farms-The Highlands CDP 3,695
19 Newtown Grant CDP 3,620
20 Trevose CDP 3,550
21 New Britain Borough 3,152
22 Feasterville CDP 3,074
23 Plumsteadville CDP 2,637
24 New Hope Borough 2,528
25 Yardley Borough 2,434
26 Woodside CDP 2,425
27 Penndel Borough 2,328
28 Newtown Borough 2,248
29 Dublin Borough 2,158
30 Eddington CDP 1,906
31 Tullytown Borough 1,872
32 Spinnerstown CDP 1,826
33 Langhorne Borough 1,622
34 Langhorne Manor Borough 1,442
35 Cornwells Heights CDP 1,391
36 Richlandtown Borough 1,327
37 Ivyland Borough 1,041
38 Hulmeville Borough 1,003
39 Trumbauersville Borough 974
40 Milford Square CDP 897
41 Silverdale Borough 871
42 Riegelsville Borough 868

Climate

Piedmont Region

According to the Trewartha climate classification system, the Piedmont (United States) section of Bucks County, which is located roughly northwest of U.S. Route 1, has a Temperate Continental Climate with hot and slightly humid summers, cold winters and year-around precipitation (Dcao). Dcao climates are characterized by at least one month having an average mean temperature ≤ 32.0 °F (0 °C), four to seven months with an average mean temperature ≥ 50.0 °F (10 °C), at least one month with an average mean temperature ≥ 72.0 °F (22 °C) and no significant precipitation difference between seasons. According to the Köppen climate classification system, the climate is a hot-summer, wet all year, humid continental climate (Dfa). During the summer months in the Piedmont, episodes of extreme heat and humidity can occur with heat index values > 102 °F (39 °C). The average wettest month is July which corresponds with the annual peak in thunderstorm activity.

During the winter months, episodes of extreme cold and wind can occur with wind chill values < −16 °F (−27 °C). The plant hardiness zone at Haycock Mountain, elevation 968 ft (295 m), is 6b with an average annual extreme minimum air temperature of −4.6 °F (−20 °C).[43] The average seasonal (Nov-Apr) snowfall total is between 26 and 36 inches (66 and 91 centimetres) depending on elevation and distance from the Atlantic Ocean. The average snowiest month is February which correlates with the annual peak in nor'easter activity. Some areas of the Piedmont farther south and along the river below New Hope are in hardiness zone 7a, as is the Atlantic Coastal Plain region of Bucks.

Climate data for Haycock Twp. Elevation: 735 ft (224 m). 1981-2010 Averages (1981-2018 Records)
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °F (°C) 69.9
(21.1)
77.8
(25.4)
86.8
(30.4)
93.1
(33.9)
93.9
(34.4)
94.5
(34.7)
101.4
(38.6)
98.6
(37.0)
96.3
(35.7)
88.9
(31.6)
79.6
(26.4)
73.7
(23.2)
101.4
(38.6)
Mean daily maximum °F (°C) 37.3
(2.9)
41.1
(5.1)
49.1
(9.5)
61.3
(16.3)
71.0
(21.7)
79.2
(26.2)
83.5
(28.6)
81.9
(27.7)
75.2
(24.0)
64.1
(17.8)
53.4
(11.9)
41.7
(5.4)
61.7
(16.5)
Daily mean °F (°C) 28.4
(−2.0)
31.4
(−0.3)
38.7
(3.7)
49.9
(9.9)
59.7
(15.4)
68.4
(20.2)
72.8
(22.7)
71.4
(21.9)
64.3
(17.9)
53.3
(11.8)
43.7
(6.5)
33.2
(0.7)
51.4
(10.8)
Mean daily minimum °F (°C) 19.5
(−6.9)
21.7
(−5.7)
28.4
(−2.0)
38.4
(3.6)
48.3
(9.1)
57.7
(14.3)
62.1
(16.7)
60.9
(16.1)
53.4
(11.9)
42.5
(5.8)
34.0
(1.1)
24.7
(−4.1)
41.1
(5.1)
Record low °F (°C) −13.9
(−25.5)
−6.5
(−21.4)
0.7
(−17.4)
15.9
(−8.9)
31.4
(−0.3)
39.4
(4.1)
45.4
(7.4)
40.2
(4.6)
33.8
(1.0)
22.7
(−5.2)
9.8
(−12.3)
−3.5
(−19.7)
−13.9
(−25.5)
Average precipitation inches (mm) 3.54
(90)
2.89
(73)
3.74
(95)
4.25
(108)
4.24
(108)
4.34
(110)
5.11
(130)
4.12
(105)
4.45
(113)
4.56
(116)
3.83
(97)
4.20
(107)
49.27
(1,251)
Average relative humidity (%) 68.6 64.5 60.7 58.9 64.0 70.4 69.9 72.5 73.4 71.7 69.6 70.1 67.9
Average dew point °F (°C) 19.4
(−7.0)
20.8
(−6.2)
26.3
(−3.2)
36.1
(2.3)
47.5
(8.6)
58.4
(14.7)
62.4
(16.9)
62.1
(16.7)
55.6
(13.1)
44.4
(6.9)
34.4
(1.3)
24.5
(−4.2)
41.1
(5.1)
Source: PRISM[44]
Climate data for Doylestown, Pennsylvania
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Mean daily maximum °F (°C) 39
(4)
43
(6)
52
(11)
63
(17)
74
(23)
82
(28)
87
(31)
85
(29)
77
(25)
66
(19)
55
(13)
44
(7)
64
(18)
Mean daily minimum °F (°C) 24
(−4)
25
(−4)
33
(1)
42
(6)
52
(11)
61
(16)
66
(19)
65
(18)
57
(14)
45
(7)
37
(3)
29
(−2)
45
(7)
Average precipitation inches (mm) 3.94
(100)
2.87
(73)
4.24
(108)
3.85
(98)
4.81
(122)
3.61
(92)
4.72
(120)
4.34
(110)
4.66
(118)
3.35
(85)
3.74
(95)
3.80
(97)
47.93
(1,217)
Source: Weather Channel[45]

Atlantic Coastal Plain Region

According to the Trewartha climate classification system, the Atlantic coastal plain section of Bucks County, which is located roughly southeast of U.S. Route 1 has a Temperate Oceanic Climate with hot and slightly humid summers, cool winters and year-around precipitation (Doak). Doak climates are characterized by all months having an average mean temperature > 32.0 °F (0 °C), four to seven months with an average mean temperature ≥ 50.0 °F (10 °C), at least one month with an average mean temperature ≥ 72.0 °F (22 °C) and no significant precipitation difference between seasons. According to the Köppen climate classification, this region has a humid subtropical climate (Cfa). During the summer months in the Atlantic Coastal Plain, episodes of extreme heat and humidity can occur with heat index values > 110 °F (43 °C). The average wettest month is July which corresponds with the annual peak in thunderstorm activity. During the winter months, episodes of extreme cold and wind can occur with wind chill values < −7 °F (−22 °C). The plant hardiness zone in Andalusia, Bensalem Twp, elevation 16 ft (4.9 m), is 7a with an average annual extreme minimum air temperature of 3.0 °F (−16 °C).[43] The average seasonal (Nov-Apr) snowfall total is between 24 and 26 inches (61 and 66 centimetres) depending on elevation and distance from the Atlantic Ocean. The average snowiest month is February which correlates with the annual peak in nor'easter activity.

Climate data for Andalusia, Bensalem Twp. Elevation: 16 ft (4.9 m). 1981-2010 Averages (1981-2018 Records)
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °F (°C) 72.5
(22.5)
78.7
(25.9)
87.7
(30.9)
94.1
(34.5)
96.1
(35.6)
97.5
(36.4)
103.5
(39.7)
101.3
(38.5)
99.1
(37.3)
89.6
(32.0)
81.8
(27.7)
76.6
(24.8)
103.5
(39.7)
Mean daily maximum °F (°C) 41.0
(5.0)
44.4
(6.9)
52.6
(11.4)
63.9
(17.7)
73.7
(23.2)
82.9
(28.3)
86.9
(30.5)
85.5
(29.7)
78.7
(25.9)
67.3
(19.6)
56.4
(13.6)
45.4
(7.4)
65.0
(18.3)
Daily mean °F (°C) 33.4
(0.8)
36.0
(2.2)
43.3
(6.3)
53.8
(12.1)
63.3
(17.4)
72.8
(22.7)
77.4
(25.2)
76.0
(24.4)
68.9
(20.5)
57.3
(14.1)
47.6
(8.7)
37.8
(3.2)
55.7
(13.2)
Mean daily minimum °F (°C) 25.6
(−3.6)
27.6
(−2.4)
34.1
(1.2)
43.6
(6.4)
52.9
(11.6)
62.7
(17.1)
67.8
(19.9)
66.4
(19.1)
59.1
(15.1)
47.3
(8.5)
38.9
(3.8)
30.3
(−0.9)
46.4
(8.0)
Record low °F (°C) −7.4
(−21.9)
−0.6
(−18.1)
5.7
(−14.6)
19.5
(−6.9)
35.2
(1.8)
44.4
(6.9)
51.0
(10.6)
45.4
(7.4)
38.8
(3.8)
27.6
(−2.4)
15.0
(−9.4)
1.6
(−16.9)
−7.4
(−21.9)
Average precipitation inches (mm) 3.52
(89)
2.73
(69)
4.23
(107)
3.88
(99)
4.20
(107)
4.18
(106)
4.97
(126)
4.34
(110)
4.14
(105)
3.71
(94)
3.46
(88)
3.93
(100)
47.29
(1,201)
Average relative humidity (%) 64.2 60.9 56.1 56.5 60.7 62.8 64.1 66.2 66.8 66.9 65.5 66.4 63.1
Average dew point °F (°C) 22.6
(−5.2)
23.8
(−4.6)
28.7
(−1.8)
38.7
(3.7)
49.5
(9.7)
59.4
(15.2)
64.3
(17.9)
63.9
(17.7)
57.4
(14.1)
46.4
(8.0)
36.6
(2.6)
27.6
(−2.4)
43.3
(6.3)
Source: PRISM[44]
Climate data for Newbold Channel, Falls Twp, Delaware River Water Temperature
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Daily mean °F (°C) 37
(3)
37
(3)
44
(7)
53
(12)
63
(17)
74
(23)
81
(27)
80
(27)
73
(23)
60
(16)
48
(9)
40
(4)
58
(14)
Source: NOAA[46]

Ecology

According to the A. W. Kuchler U.S. potential natural vegetation types, Bucks County, Pennsylvania would have a dominant vegetation type of Appalachian Oak (104) with a dominant vegetation form of Eastern Hardwood Forest (25).[47]

Notable people

Official seal

The traditional seal of Bucks County, Pennsylvania takes its design from the inspiration of the county's founder, William Penn. The center of the seal consists of a shield from the Penn family crest with a tree above and a flowering vine surrounding it in symmetric flanks. The seal has a gold-colored background and a green band denoting Penn as the county's first proprietor and governor.

In 1683, Penn's council decreed that a tree and vine be incorporated into the emblem to signify the county's abundance of woods. The seal was used in its official capacity until the Revolutionary War. The county government has since used the official Pennsylvania state seal for official documents. Today, the Bucks County seal's use is largely ceremonial. It appears on county stationery and vehicles as a symbol of the county's heritage. The gold emblem is also the centerpiece of the official Bucks County flag, which has a blue background and gold trim.

See also

References

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40°20′N 75°07′W / 40.34°N 75.11°W / 40.34; -75.11