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Visiting Bennett's Valley Today and Our Elk

The History of Pennsylvania Elk County
The History of Pennsylvania Elk Country by Ralph Harrison
The Pennsylvania Forestry Association
See Below to Purchase

Much of what we promote as the Society is the history and heritage of Bennett's Valley. Our ancestors would highly encourage us to not forget the beauty of today's Jay and Benezette townships and the other parts of Elk County.

Bennett's Valley is just as beautiful today as is was in the past. Through the following sites learn about the Bennett's Valley today and come for a visit. Don't forget the Mt Zion Historical Park and its veteran's memorial and walkway.

And remember the Elk. The Elk are very special to us in the Bennett's Valley. Benezette is recognized by the State and travel and tourist organizaitons as the major Elk viewing area. See the links for some very interesting information about our beloved Elk.

Interesting Local Sites The Elk and other Attractions Newspapers and Libraries Selected Hotels and Restuarants Historical Points of Interest

The History of Pennsylvania Elk Country can be purchased for $12 from
The Pennsylvania Forestry Association
56 East Main Street
Mechanicsburg, Penna. 17055
Phone 717-766-5371
The cost of these publications, also by Ralph Harrison, are available for $6.00 each which includes shipping and handling.The Association accepts checks and money orders, but can not accept credit cards at this time.

The author, Ralph Harrison was born in the village of Dents Run, Elk County, in 1928, and except for military service, he spent all his life in the area. From 1860 to 1910 Dents Run was a thriving little lumbering community with a sawmill, a shingle mill and a grist mill. At its peak the population of Dents Run numbered nearly two hundred people. Today there are a dozen permanent residents. Almost everyone hunted and fished, and lived close to and made part of their living from the land. Both his father, William Harrison and mother had an early interest in elk that also included the authorís brothers and sisters that inherited a love of the outdoors and an appreciation of nature. The authorís father helped introduce the last elk that were released on Dents Run in 1926 and the elk have always been a part of the authorís life. The author still finds the Elk as interesting and fascinating as he did when he saw his first Elk some seventy-five years ago. Ralph Harrison started working for the Department of Forest and Waters in 1950 and retired in 1991. His father worked for the Department of Forest and waters as a fire warden and as a fire tower-man in the early days. The authorís son, Chip, works for the bureau of State Parks as a park manager at Lyman Run State Park. The Harrison family history covers ninety years with the Departments of Forest and Waters, Environmental Resources and Conservation and Natural Resources.

The author has seen the elk population increase from a low of two dozens or less living on a small area in Elk and Cameron Counties to somewhere between four and six hundred animals scattered over six counties. One interesting fact is that their new range covers much of the area where the original eastern elk made their last stand. There is a lesson to be learned here. If we protect the habitat and give them the space they need, they will be with us for a long time.


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