Berks County Almshouse

Berks County Almshouse

The Berks County Almshouse was located just outside of Shillington along route 724 or Philadelphia Avenue. The land on which the Almshouse was built in 1824 was owned by Governor Thomas Mifflin. His actual residence, the location of which has been long debated amongst local historians, was rumored to be one of the buildings on the Almshouse grounds.

Berks County Almshouse
Looking west at route 724/Philadelphia Avenue roughly where the entrance to Shillington Park is today

The Berks County Almshouse opened officially in 1826, when a state law was passed requiring every county in the state of Pennsylvania to have a “poorhouse”.… Read Full Article

Penn Township High School – Bernville

Penn Township High
Penn Township Consolidated School building, built in 1930

On Monday, September 2, 1907, the Bernville High School began its first classes. Many local schools established around the turn of the 20th century were the result of borough funds, but that is not the case for Bernville High. It was only introduced by an act of the state legislature appropriating money for township high schools to be established.… Read Full Article

Far East Chinese Restaurant

Far East Chinese Restaurant
Source – pictured in 1967

In 1920, the very first Chinese cuisine restaurant opened in Berks County at 739 Penn Street in Reading by Chee Yuen Hong and his father Sik Que Hong. Back then it was called the Far East Tea Garden and was ran by various members of the Hong family through the following decades and moves. In 1929 the family moved the restaurant a block away to 837 Penn Street where it remained for over three decades and became Far East Chinese Restaurant.… Read Full Article

Miracle Mart – 2101 Centre Ave

Miracle Mart

Miracle Mart was a 50,000 square foot department store on Route 61/Centre Ave in North Reading. There is very little information online about Miracle Mart or its origins, besides that there was a more well-documented and unrelated Canadian department store chain by the same name. Looking at aerial photos of the area leads me to believe this location in Reading, Pennsylvania was opened in 1959.… Read Full Article