Northampton Twp, Bucks County, PA

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Richboro lies near the geographical center of Northampton Township at the junction of Route 362 with the Feasterville and Richboro Turnpike (Routes 232). It is an old settlement. Some of the early Dutch and English pioneers, including the Krewson, Cornell, Corson, Addis and Bennett families, settled in and near the village. For many years, and even to the present day, (note: keep in mind, this text was published in the 1940s) Richboro was colloquially known as "The Bear" or "The Black Bear," so named from its famous tavern and sign. The first inn is said to have been a small log cabin at the intersection of the turnpike and Jacksonville Road. In early times the village was also known as Bennetts and Leedomville. Leedoms, so called from Richard Leedom, who settled in the village before 1750, kept a store there many years and was influential in community and county affairs. When Richard L. Thomas was appointed first postmaster, May 26, 1830, the name was changed to Richborough, subsequently shortened to Richboro, and so named it is claimed from the postmaster, popularly known as "Rich" Thomas.

Source: Place Names in Bucks County, George MacReynolds, 1942, Bucks County Historical Society.

Photo: "Hampton Hill," Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission.

Hampton Hill, (2nd Street Pike) also known as the Benet-Search House, illustrates the accommodation of a Colonial and post-Colonial structure into a unified dwelling. The houses were built by the Benet family (Abraham Benet - head of the family) which moved from Long Island, New York, in the early to mid-eighteenth century. The complex of related buildings is indicative of an early farm community centered around the family.

Legends say that 1) the Delaware Indians (Lenni Lenape) assembled between the wood shed and the wagon shed in the eighteenth century for the purpose of trading with the family and other traders, 2) that a slave burial ground is located approximately two hundred yards north of the house and that 3) the house with a stone arched way to one of the cellars was found while excavations were being done, this supports the legend that the house may have been used as a hiding place for slaves on the Underground Railway.

Architecturally, the house contains fine woodwork throughout. The winding stairway with landing is exceptionally fine and is a feature that rarely survives in rural architecture. Preservation of the house has been carefully executed with care taken not to disrupt the original floor plans or modify woodwork. Hampton Hill stands as a monument to careful and correct utilization of restoration procedure being graced with repointed stone work and new roofing on the exterior and original rafters, wall boards, doors, mantels and fireplaces on the inside.

Source: excerpted from a copy of the nomination document submitted to the National Register for Historic Places in September, 1972.

Nearby Neighborhoods

Street Names
Richboro Road • Route 232 • Route 332 • Second Street Pike

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