National Heritage Area

(814) 677-3152

217 Elm Street

Oil City, PA 16301-1412


Eight miles south of the New York border, Colonel Levitt Little, an employee of the United States Land Company, established in 1837 a homestead on Tuna Creek. In time, other settlers arrived, and the place was named Littleton. In 1858, the tiny out-of-the-way village was renamed Bradford. By 1875, the community had five or six hundred inhabitants. Frederick Crocker of Titusville changed all this in the summer of 1875. Crocker, refer to the Styles Section under Italianate, was drilling wildcat wells in the Bradford area that summer when he brought in a flowing well with a capacity of over a hundred barrels a day. This was enough to draw oil men from everywhere. By 1880, over 7000 wells were producing oil in the Bradford Field with production running at the extraordinary rate of 65,000 barrels a day. In 1881, the field was producing 100,000 barrels a day, close to 77% of the world’s oil supply. At that time, some 11,000 people lived in and around Bradford

A few of the many Victorian Homes in Bradford, Pennsylvania





With a relatively late start as a Victorian period community and somewhat isolated, Bradford’s nineteenth century domestic architectural expressions were often unique. The influences of the time: Stick, Queen Anne, and Colonial Revival Classicism were all incorporated in Bradford’s residences.

DRIVING DIRECTIONS: East from Warren on Route 6 and Route 59 to Route 770 and Route 219 North. From New York, Route 17, come south on Route 219.

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