Emlenton Borough

Venango County, Pennsylvania

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Emlenton Borough Hall, P.O. Box 537, Emlenton PA 16373.
Phone: 724‑867‑8611.


The Borough of Emlenton was incorporated on January 27, 1859, only months before Col. Edwin L. Drake sank the first commercial oil well near Titusville and changed the face of the world — and of this community — forever. Emlenton lies within the "Lower Region" of the northwestern Pennsylvania oil fields, as characterized by Williamson and Dunn in The American Petroleum Industry 1859-1899. These same authors also wrote that "...visiting the Oil Regions in the summer of 1868, J. R. G. Hazard reported [in the New York Daily Tribune] a prevalent belief in an oil belt extending all the way from Titusville to Emlenton in the still undeveloped Lower Region."

The prosperity which Emlenton enjoyed in the first quarter-century of the oil industry was due primarily to its location on the Allegheny River and to the success of nearby strikes at St. Petersburg, Foxburg, and at Parker's Landing (now known simply as Parker). J. H. Newton's 1879 county history recorded: "Since the year 1860, Emlenton seems to have received a new impetus in business and growth. Two railroads pass through the place, which have added greatly to its advantage. In the year above alluded to, it polled only 40 votes. At present it contains a population of 1,600, and polls from 300 to 400 votes. Within the last few years the town has undergone extensive improvements."

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