New Hope Pennsylvania

A Town Filled of History and Arts

Everyone has wondered at one point or another, be it when you were little, or even now, what it would be like to walk down a street that had so much beauty in its natural surroundings that it could be called enchanted. Perhaps, for some, it is a perfect romantic get away place. New Hope Pennsylvania offers this. It is a little village tucked in by the rushing, murky waters of the Delaware River and the either still or churning mossy waters of the Delaware Canal, depending on the time of day. The construction of the buildings, roads, and even the cover bridge gives off the feeling of walking through a time machine into a different era. Many of the inns and other buildings have been restored to keep the look of the era from which it arose, 1700s.

This quiet little town is such a beautiful place. There is a mix of older styled houses of cobblestone, while some are more modern and have a very artistic feel to them, which should not surprise many people, since this small town is a hugely artistic town. It still holds its rustic feel both day and night. The night has a habit of playing tricks on the eyes, especially when it comes to the still canal. When walking over a bridge that crosses the canal, to another part of the town. Stop and look down. It looks as if one is looking at another road. It is, in fact, moss-covered water, which has settled after a day of constant churning from the mule drawn ferry that moves up and down for a tourist ride. The dim lighting gives a grayish tint to the moss, leaving it to look like a cemented road.

The canal and river each hold much history, though it was both of them that brought history, as well as other "tales" to this place called New Hope. The town has not always been known as New Hope. At one point, the little town was known as Coryell's Ferry, after the owner of the Ferry service offered here. Coryell’s Ferry was what once marked the halfway mark between New York City and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Travelers would stop here in this little town to eat and sleep. Come the following morning, some of these travelers would use the Ferry service that was once offered to across the Delaware River.

Coryell’s Ferry was changed to New Hope after the fire that burned down the mills, before George Washington’s famous crossing of the Delaware River, using Mr. Coryell’s Ferry. The rebuilding of the mills was said to bring a "new hope" to the town, in which case brought about the name change to New Hope. Today, the mills have all closed down and no longer are in use. The few that had not closed were relocated to other cities and towns away from New Hope.

New Hope holds so many "tales" or unusual quirks, that it has also been referred to as a paranormal investigator’s dream place. Some have even gone as far as saying it is almost as haunted as Gettysburg. During the Revolutionary War, George Washington’s troops passed through this little village several times, using the Coryell Ferry. In fact, it is noted that George Washington’s orders were to protect Coryell’s Ferry from enemy troops. It is said that, to this day, if you stand near the covered bridge in the middle of town that you can hear the troops marching from time to time, and if it is close enough to dark, you will see the flicker of torches accompanying the marching soldiers.

It is also said that, a couple minutes north of New Hope is a bridge, known by many as Cry Baby Bridge. It got its name from the two babies whose cries haunt the place. It is said that a woman took her two newborn infants to the bridge and jumped with the children in her arms because she was husband-less and could not support herself, especially not with two little children. Some have even claimed to hear this women crying on the bridge in New Hope, as well as the bridge she jumped from. The sobs and dreaded feeling are so heavy and haunting, the bridge has scared even some people who say that it takes a lot to scare them.

People hear stories and tales by word of mouth about New Hope all the time. Yet it is not often that people will hear stories of New Hope in the news, unless it is news of the flooding of the little village. In 1983, news casters reported over the flickering television sets that NBC anchorwoman, Jessica Savitch and her boyfriend drowned in the Delaware Canal after their car overturned; due to poor visibility through a heavy downpour of rain. The more recent newscasts about New Hope were also due to flooding, most recently the 2004 and 2006 floods, which caused severe damage to homes along the river.

The town also holds many stores that range from fetish wear to regular clothing, from specialty shops like Mystical Tymes; a shop that specializes itself with magic, to book stores and from a medieval art gallery to even a leather store and many jewelry stores, most of which is hand-crafted sterling silver. Other places within town consist of inns, eateries, and places to buy or dine with specialty foods, The New Hope Winery, a borough building and a playhouse, as well as a fire company near the covered bridge. The nightlife here tends to thrive with a mix of people; everyone from romantic couples walking hand and hand or snuggling up in an inn room to college students from New York, Philadelphia, New Jersey and surrounding areas looking for some fun, to the town’s folk and tourist. Many bars and pubs line the streets, and several of the stores stay open late due to chance of sales.

The playhouse though, holds great wonders through out the year; different shows every month or even every few weeks, though every October it is the same show: an amazing midnight showing of The Rocky Horror Picture show, that is worth the time it takes to get there and the money it cost to get in. The playhouse sits near the middle of the town in a huge red barn. It is one that you would think to only find in the countryside, but it has been renovated into a theater.

New Hope is amazing. The feeling of the surroundings is more than just enchanted, it also is sophisticated, artistic, and beyond beautiful. Words can’t even begin to describe the amazing job the people of the town do to keep the rustic and enchanted feeling going, day in and day out. It is a place that leaves you wanting to know more about its history. It is a place you want to hear more of the paranormal activity that happens around town. It is a place you yearn to go back to. New Hope is the enchanted fairy tale place that has been sought after for years.

Alyssa Shifflett
Alyssa Shifflett

A Pansexual; Polyamorous; Stepmom; Body Modified; Wildly colored hair.

Writing and Photography our my outlets of choice. Nature is my tranquility. The road; traveling is my medicine when nothing else works.

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New Hope Pennsylvania