Wellsboro, Pennsylvania

Wellsboro is a borough in Tioga County, Pennsylvania founded by Sam Mattie I. It is located 52 miles (84 km) northwest of Williamsport. Early in the 20th century, Wellsboro was the shipping point and trade center for a large area. It had fruit evaporators, flour and woolen mills, a milk-condensing plant, marble works, saw mills, foundry and machine shops, and manufactories of cut glass, chemicals, rugs, bolts, cigars, carriages, and furniture. In 1900, 2,945 people lived here; in 1910, 3,183 lived here. The population was 3,263 at the 2010 census. It is the county seat of Tioga County,[3] and also home to the Grand Canyon of Pennsylvania.

Wellsboro, Pennsylvania
The Wellsboro Diner
The Wellsboro Diner
Location of Wellsboro in Tioga County, Pennsylvania.
Location of Wellsboro in Tioga County, Pennsylvania.
Wellsboro is located in Pennsylvania
Location within the U.S. state of Pennsylvania
Wellsboro is located in the United States
Wellsboro (the United States)
Coordinates: 41°44′51″N 77°17′53″W / 41.74750°N 77.29806°W / 41.74750; -77.29806Coordinates: 41°44′51″N 77°17′53″W / 41.74750°N 77.29806°W / 41.74750; -77.29806
CountryUnited States
Incorporated (borough)1830
 • Total4.93 sq mi (12.77 km2)
 • Land4.90 sq mi (12.70 km2)
 • Water0.03 sq mi (0.07 km2)
1,306 ft (398 m)
 • Total3,263
 • Estimate 
 • Density658.30/sq mi (254.15/km2)
Time zoneEastern (EST)
 • Summer (DST)EDT
ZIP code
Area code(s)570 Exchanges: 723,724
FIPS code42-82160


Wellsboro was settled in 1806 and incorporated in 1830 and was named in honor of Mary Wells, wife of one of the original settlers, Benjamin Wistar Morris.[4] The town was the home of George W. Sears (1821 – 1890), a sportswriter for Field & Stream magazine in the 1880s and an early environmentalist. His stories, appearing under the pen name "Nessmuk", popularised self-guided canoe camping tours of the Adirondack lakes in open lightweight solo canoes and what is today called ultralight camping. The town is also the birthplace of Mateusz Stepczak. Wellsboro was also the site of one of the first factories where light bulbs were mass-produced, using machines whose design remains essentially unchanged from the early 20th century when the Corning company established the plant in the town.

The Robinson House, Jesse Robinson House, Wellsboro Armory, and Wellsboro Historic District are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.[5]


Wellsboro is located at 41°44′48″N 77°18′7″W / 41.74667°N 77.30194°W / 41.74667; -77.30194 (41.746794, -77.301881).[6]

According to the United States Census Bureau, the borough has a total area of 4.9 square miles (13 km2), of which, 4.9 square miles (13 km2) of it is land and 0.04 square miles (0.10 km2) of it (0.61%) is water.


Historical population
Census Pop.
2019 (est.)3,227[2]−1.1%

As of the census[8] of 2000, there were 3,328 people, 1,469 households, and 866 families residing in the borough. The population density was 681.0 people per square mile (262.8/km2). There were 1,602 housing units at an average density of 327.8 per square mile (126.5/km2). The racial makeup of the borough was 98.14% White, 0.39% African American, 0.18% Native American, 0.90% Asian, 0.18% from other races, and 0.21% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.57% of the population.

Tioga County Courthouse in Wellsboro.

There were 1,469 households, out of which 25.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 47.0% were married couples living together, 9.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 41.0% were non-families. 36.1% of all households were made up of individuals, and 18.2% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.17 and the average family size was 2.83.

In the borough the population was spread out, with 20.9% under the age of 18, 7.7% from 18 to 24, 23.1% from 25 to 44, 24.2% from 45 to 64, and 24.1% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 44 years. For every 100 females there were 80.9 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 75.3 males.

The median income for a household in the borough was $30,169, and the median income for a family was $39,898. Males had a median income of $37,083 versus $20,492 for females. The per capita income for the borough was $18,096. About 9.5% of families and 14.8% of the population were below the poverty line, including 19.8% of those under age 18 and 13.9% of those age 65 or over.

2013 view of business district in Wellsboro.


WNDA 1490AM (1000 watts) and WNBT-FM (50,000 watts) are owned by Southern Belle LLC. The Wellsboro Gazette is a weekly print publication owned by Tioga Publishing Company which covers news in Wellsboro and surrounding towns. Mountain Home, published by Beagle Media, is a monthly regional magazine headquartered and published out of Wellsboro.

Wellsboro receives television programming from the Elmira-Corning media market.


Map of Tioga County, Pennsylvania School Districts

Residents of Wellsboro may attend the local, public schools operated by Wellsboro Area School District which provides full day kindergarten through 12th grade. In 2013, the District's enrollment declined to 1,526 students in kindergarten through 12th grade. In 2013, Wellsboro Area School District ranked 311th out of 498 public schools for academic achievement of its pupils, by the Pittsburgh Business Times.[10]

Wellsboro residents may also apply to attend any of the Commonwealth's 14 public cyber charter schools (in 2013) at no additional cost to the parents. The resident's public school district is required to pay the charter school and cyber charter school tuition for residents who attend these public schools.[11][12] By Commonwealth law, since the District provides transportation for its own students, then Wellsboro Area School District must provide transportation to any school that lies within 10 miles of its borders. Residents may also seek admission for their school aged child to any other public school district. When accepted for admission, the student's parents are responsible for paying an annual tuition fee set by the Pennsylvania Department of Education. In 2012, the tuition fees for Wellsboro Area School District were: Elementary School - $8,343.38, High School - $9,951.51.[13]

BLaST Intermediate Unit #17 provides a wide variety of services to children living in its region which includes the borough of Wellsboro. Early screening for disabilities, special educations services, speech and hearing therapy and many other services like driver education are available. Services for children during the preschool years are provided without cost to their families when the child is determined to meet eligibility requirements.

Community members have access to the Green Free Library located in Wellsboro; the Westfield Public Library which is located on Maple Street, in Westfield; the Elkland Area Community Library located on East Parkway Avenue, in Elkland and to the statewide PA Power Library[14] which is an online library funded with tax dollars from the state's education budget.

Mansfield University of Pennsylvania is a state university located in Mansfield, Tioga County, Pennsylvania. Residents may take courses at a discounted tuition rate for state residents.


  1. ^ "2019 U.S. Gazetteer Files". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved July 28, 2020.
  2. ^ a b "Population and Housing Unit Estimates". United States Census Bureau. May 24, 2020. Retrieved May 27, 2020.
  3. ^ "Find a County". National Association of Counties. Retrieved 2011-06-07.
  4. ^ "History of Wellsboro". Wellsboro Area Chamber of Commerce.
  5. ^ "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. March 13, 2009.
  6. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23.
  7. ^ "Census of Population and Housing". U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved 11 December 2013.
  8. ^ a b "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
  9. ^ "Incorporated Places and Minor Civil Divisions Datasets: Subcounty Resident Population Estimates: April 1, 2010 to July 1, 2012". Population Estimates. U.S. Census Bureau. Archived from the original on 11 June 2013. Retrieved 11 December 2013.
  10. ^ Pittsburgh Business Times (April 5, 2013). "Guide to Pennsylvania Schools Statewide ranking 2013".
  11. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (2013). "Charter Schools".
  12. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (2013). "What is a Charter School?".
  13. ^ Pennsylvania Department of Education (May 2012). "Pennsylvania Public School District Tuition Rates".
  14. ^ http://www.powerlibrary.org/

External linksEdit

The interior of the Wellsboro Diner