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Europeans in Pennsylvania


State House in Philadelphia
State House in Philadelphia

Much of present-day Pennsylvania was originally included in the land grant for the Virginia colony given in 1606 to the London Company. About 1615 and 1616 French and Dutch explorers traveled parts of Pennsylvania. Étienne Brûlé of France claimed to have explored the Susquehanna River from the north, while Dutch Captain Cornelius Hendricksen sailed up the Delaware River to its junction with the Schuylkill River. The Dutch, with headquarters on Manhattan Island, established a trading post on the Schuylkill in 1633.

Swedes established the first permanent settlement in Pennsylvania. They had already founded a colony, New Sweden, on the western shore of Delaware Bay, and in 1643 they moved the colony’s capital to Tinicum Island near present-day Philadelphia. The Dutch captured New Sweden in 1655 in a contest over control of Delaware Bay and annexed it to their colony of New Netherland. In 1664 the British captured New Netherland, renaming the entire region New York. From this area the colonies of New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Delaware were later formed. "Pennsylvania" © Emmanuel BUCHOT, Encarta, Wikipedia

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