Northampton County, Pennsylvania

Northampton County
Zeta Psi Fraternity House, Lafayette College
Official seal of Northampton County
Map of Pennsylvania highlighting Northampton 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°45′N 75°19′W / 40.75°N 75.31°W / 40.75; -75.31
Country  United States
State  Pennsylvania
Founded March 11, 1752
Named for Northamptonshire
Seat Easton
Largest city Bethlehem
 • Total 377 sq mi (980 km2)
 • Land 370 sq mi (1,000 km2)
 • Water 7.7 sq mi (20 km2)  2.0%%
 • Estimate 
 • Density 813/sq mi (314/km2)
Time zone UTC−5 (Eastern)
 • Summer (DST) UTC−4 (EDT)
Congressional district 7th

Northampton County is a county located in the U.S. state of Pennsylvania. As of the 2010 census, the population was 297,735.[1] Its county seat is Easton.[2] The county was formed in 1752 from parts of Bucks County. Its namesake was Northamptonshire and the county seat of Easton is named for the country house Easton Neston.

Northampton County is included in the Allentown-Bethlehem-Easton, PA-NJ Metropolitan Statistical Area, which is also included in the New York-Newark, NY-NJ-CT-PA Combined Statistical Area. Its northern edge borders The Poconos, and its eastern section borders the Delaware River, which divides Pennsylvania and New Jersey.

Northampton County also borders the Delaware Valley and is included in Philadelphia's Media Market

The county is industrially-oriented, producing cement, and other industrial products. Bethlehem Steel, once one of the world's largest manufacturers of steel, was located there prior to its closing in 2003.


According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 377 square miles (980 km2), of which 370 square miles (960 km2) is land and 7.7 square miles (20 km2) (2.0%) is water.[3] The climate is humid continental (mostly Dfa with a little Dfb in higher northern areas) and the hardiness zones are 6b and 6a. Average monthly temperatures in downtown Bethlehem average from 29.1 °F in January to 74.1 °F in July, while in Wind Gap they average from 27.0 °F in January to 71.7 °F in July. [1]

Adjacent counties

National protected areas


As of the 2010 census, the county was 81.0% White Non-Hispanic, 5.0% Black or African American, 0.2% Native American or Alaskan Native, 2.4% Asian, 0.0% Native Hawaiian, 2.2% were two or more races, and 3.8% were some other race. 10.5% of the population were of Hispanic or Latino ancestry.

As of the census[11] of 2000, there were 267,066 people, 101,541 households, and 71,078 families residing in the county. The population density was 714 people per square mile (276/km2). There were 106,710 housing units at an average density of 286 per square mile (110/km2). The racial makeup of the county was 91.23% White, 2.77% Black or African American, 0.15% Native American, 1.37% Asian, 0.03% Pacific Islander, 3.06% from other races, and 1.39% from two or more races. 6.69% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 24.0% were of German, 14.0% Italian, 8.8% Irish, 5.1% English and 5.1% American ancestry. 89.3% spoke English and 5.5% Spanish as their first language.

There were 101,541 households out of which 31.20% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 56.40% were married couples living together, 9.80% had a female householder with no husband present, and 30.00% were non-families. 24.70% of all households were made up of individuals and 11.20% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.53 and the average family size was 3.02.

In the county, the population was spread out with 23.30% under the age of 18, 9.20% from 18 to 24, 28.30% from 25 to 44, 23.40% from 45 to 64, and 15.70% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females there were 94.80 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 91.70 males.


Northampton is one of the seven counties in Pennsylvania which has adopted a home rule charter. Instead of being run by a Board of Commissioners and several Row Officers, voters elect an Executive, a nine-person Council, a Controller, and a District Attorney. The Executive, Controller and District Attorney are elected by all voters in the County, as are five members of the Council. The other four Councilmen are elected by districts. The Row Officers are nominated by the county executive and approved by county council.

Elected Officials

  • County Executive:
    • Lamont McClure, Democrat
  • County Council:
    • Ronald R. Heckman - President, Democrat
    • Lori Vargo Heffner - Vice President, Democrat
    • Margaret (Peg) Ferraro, Republican
    • William B. McGee, Democrat
    • Kevin Lott - Democrat
    • Tom Giovanni - Republican
    • Tara Zrinski, Democrat
    • John Cusick, Republican
    • Kerry Myers, Democrat
  • Clerk of Courts:
    • Leigh Ann Fisher, Democrat
  • County Controller:
    • Tony Bassil, Democrat
  • District Attorney:
    • Terry Houck, Democrat
  • Prothonotary:
    • Holly Ruggiero, Democrat
  • Register of Wills:
    • Gina Gibbs, Democrat
  • Sheriff:
    • Richard Johnson


as of December 2019, there were 208,650 registered voters in Northampton County:[13]

In recent decades, Northampton has been identified as one of Pennsylvania's "swing counties," with statewide winners carrying it in most cases; since 1952, it has gone to the statewide winner in the presidential election.[14] All five statewide winners carried it in November 2004 and all four statewide Democratic candidates carried it in November 2008, with District Attorney John Morganelli doing well there despite losing statewide to incumbent Attorney General Tom Corbett. The Democratic Party has been dominant most of the time in county-level politics in recent decades. In 2016, Donald Trump ended that streak when he became the first Republican presidential candidate to win Northampton County since 1988.

Voting Machine Problems

Municipal elections were held across Pennsylvania in November, 2019, and results in Northampton County were plagued with problems caused by newly-purchased machines, The ExpressVoteXL, sold by the manufacturer Election Systems & Software (ES&S) as "a luxury “one-stop” voting system." According to the New York Times and other publications, it was a few minutes after the polls closed on Election Day when panic began to spread through the Northampton county election offices. Vote totals in one judge’s race showed one candidate, Abe Kassis, a Democrat, had just 164 votes out of 55,000 ballots across more than 100 precincts. Some machines reported zero votes for him.[2]

The voting system, used in numerous Pennsylvania jurisdictions, combines a touch screen with a paper ballot backup. County officials determined the results by counting the paper ballots, which showed Mr. Kassis had won by 1,054 votes. Unofficial results were announced at 6AM on November 6th. The election results were certified following a canvass and audit. No challenges to the election results were filed. [3]

County executives

Northampton County executives
Name Party Term start Term end
Glenn F. Reibman Democratic 1998 2006
John Stoffa Democratic 2006 2014
John Brown Republican 2014 2018
Lamont McClure Democratic 2018 Incumbent

County Council members

  • Ronald R. Heckman, President, Democrat, at large
  • Lori Vargo Heffner, Vice President, Democrat, at large
  • Margaret (Peg) Ferraro, Republican, at large
  • Tara Zrinski, Democrat, at large
  • William B. McGee, Democrat, at large
  • Kevin Lott, Democrat, district 1
  • Kerry Meyers, Democrat, district 2
  • John Cusick, Republican, district 3
  • Tom Giovanni, Republican, district 4

State representatives[15]

State senators[15]

United States House of Representatives

United States Senate


Colleges and universities

Map of Northampton County, Pennsylvania school districts

Public school districts

Public charter schools

The Lehigh Valley Charter High School for the Performing Arts, Bethlehem

Private high schools


Air transportation

Air transport to and from Northampton County is available through Lehigh Valley International Airport (IATA: ABE, ICAO: KABE).

Bus transportation

Public bus service in Northampton County is available through the Lehigh and Northampton Transportation Authority, known as LANTA. A shuttle bus service, The Bethlehem Loop, also operates in Bethlehem. NJ Transit provides service from Easton's Centre Square to the Phillipsburg area.

Major highways


Northampton County was once served only by the 215 area code from 1947 (when the North American Numbering Plan of the Bell System went into effect) until 1994. With the county's growing population, however, Northampton County was afforded area code 610 in 1994. Today, Northampton County is covered by 610 except for the Portland exchange which uses 570. An overlay area code, 484, was added to the 610 service area in 1999.[16] A plan to introduce area code 835 as an additional overlay was rescinded in 2001.[17]


There are 2 Pennsylvania state parks in Northampton County.


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

Under Pennsylvania law, there are four types of incorporated municipalities: cities, boroughs, townships, and two towns. The following cities, boroughs and townships are located in Northampton County:




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.

Population ranking

The population ranking of the following table is based on the 2010 census of Northampton County.[18]

county seat

Rank City/borough/township/etc. Municipal type Population (2010 Census)

1 Bethlehem (partially in Lehigh County) City 74,982
2 Easton City 26,800
3 Bethlehem Township Township 23,730
4 Palmer Township Township 20,691
5 Forks Township Township 14,721
6 Hanover Township Township 10,866
7 Lower Saucon Township Township 10,772
8 Lehigh Township Township 10,527
9 Northampton Borough 9,926
10 Moore Township Township 9,198
11 Bushkill Township Township 8,178
12 Wilson Borough 7,896
13 Middletown CDP 7,441
14 Upper Mount Bethel Township Township 6,706
15 Upper Nazareth Township Township 6,231
16 Plainfield Township Township 6,138
17 Hellertown Borough 5,898
18 Williams Township Township 5,884
19 Nazareth Borough 5,746
20 Lower Nazareth Township Township 5,674
21 Bangor Borough 5,273
22 Washington Township Township 5,122
23 East Allen Township Township 4,930
24 Allen Township Township 4,269
25 Palmer Heights CDP 3,762
26 Pen Argyl Borough 3,595
27 Eastlawn Gardens CDP 3,307
28 Lower Mount Bethel Township Township 3,101
29 North Catasauqua Borough 2,849
30 Wind Gap Borough 2,720
31 Bath Borough 2,693
32 Freemansburg Borough 2,636
33 Old Orchard CDP 2,434
34 Walnutport Borough 2,070
35 Cherryville CDP 1,580
36 Roseto Borough 1,567
T-37 Belfast CDP 1,257
T-37 West Easton Borough 1,257
39 Tatamy Borough 1,203
40 East Bangor Borough 1,172
41 Raubsville CDP 1,088
42 Stockertown Borough 927
43 Martins Creek CDP 631
44 Ackermanville CDP 610
45 Portland Borough 519
46 Glendon Borough 440
47 Chapman Borough 199

Notable people

See also


  1. ^ a b "State & County QuickFacts". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on June 6, 2011. Retrieved November 20, 2013.
  2. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Archived from the original on 2011-05-31. Retrieved 2011-06-07.
  3. ^ "2010 Census Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. August 22, 2012. Retrieved March 9, 2015.
  4. ^ "Population and Housing Unit Estimates". Retrieved October 10, 2018.
  5. ^ Heads of Families at the First Census of the United States Taken in the Year 1790 By United States. Bureau of the Census
  6. ^ Colonial America To 1763 By Thomas L. Purvis
  7. ^ "U.S. Decennial Census". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on April 26, 2015. Retrieved March 9, 2015.
  8. ^ "Historical Census Browser". University of Virginia Library. Archived from the original on August 11, 2012. Retrieved March 9, 2015.
  9. ^ Forstall, Richard L., ed. (March 24, 1995). "Population of Counties by Decennial Census: 1900 to 1990". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on March 20, 2015. Retrieved March 9, 2015.
  10. ^ "Census 2000 PHC-T-4. Ranking Tables for Counties: 1990 and 2000" (PDF). United States Census Bureau. April 2, 2001. Archived (PDF) from the original on December 18, 2014. Retrieved March 9, 2015.
  11. ^ "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Archived from the original on 2013-09-11. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
  12. ^ Leip, David. "Dave Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections". Archived from the original on 2018-03-23.
  13. ^ "Running for office". Pennsylvania Department of State. Archived from the original on 12 November 2016. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  14. ^ "The bellwethers: What do voters in eastern PA know that the rest don't?". Archived from the original on 17 September 2016. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  15. ^ a b Center, Legislativate Data Processing. "Find Your Legislator". The official website for the Pennsylvania General Assembly. Archived from the original on 2017-04-22. Retrieved 2017-04-21.
  16. ^ "NANP-Overlay of 610 (Pennsylvania) Numbering Plan Area (NPA) with 484 NPA" (PDF). Archived (PDF) from the original on 2010-11-26.  (359 KB)
  17. ^ "PA 835 Implementation for 484/610 NPA Rescinded – 835 NPA Code Reclaimed" (PDF). Archived (PDF) from the original on 2010-11-26.  (20.8 KB)
  18. ^ CNMP, US Census Bureau. "This site has been redesigned and relocated. - U.S. Census Bureau". Archived from the original on 6 December 2013. Retrieved 1 May 2018.

Further reading

  • Frances S. Fox, Sweet Land of Liberty: The Ordeal of the American Revolution in Northampton County, Pennsylvania. University Park, PA: Pennsylvania State University Press, 2000.
  • William J. Heller, History of Northampton County (Pennsylvania) and the Grand Valley of the Lehigh. In Three Volumes. New York: American Historical Society, 1920. Volume 1 | Volume 2 | Volume 3

External links

Coordinates: 40°45′N 75°19′W / 40.75°N 75.31°W / 40.75; -75.31