998 Lenape Road
West Chester, PA 19382
In June 2015, East Bradford Township purchased the 6.9-acre Strode’s Barn property located at the intersection of Route 52 and Birmingham Road from the estate of Mark Rowan for $210,000. The Chester County Commissioners provided $105,000 – half the purchase price – through its Municipal Grants Program. Township officials received an additional $84,000 from a PA Department of Conservation and Natural Resources Grant.
The property is located in the Strode’s Mill Historic District – an agricultural and commercial crossroads village that dates back to 1721. Each corner of this crossroads is occupied by a building significant to its history, which is why it is an important part of the Brandywine Valley Scenic Byway. This setting is one that helps define the Township’s character and culture. Strode’s Mill played a notable role in the troop movement that led to the 1777 Battle of the Brandywine. According to historians, British General Cornwallis paused in Strode’s Mill to spread his troops wide before sweeping to the Brandywine Battlefield. Later, in 1875 brothers Marshall and Francis Strode founded the Strode’s Sausage and Scrapple Plant. For over a century, the Strode family was highly regarded throughout the region for producing the finest quality sausage and scrapple. The Township is working with the Friends of Strode’s Mill, a 501(c)3 organization, to stabilize and restore elements of this structure to create an interpretive site where residents and visitors can learn about the region’s important role in early American history.
In addition to historic preservation, this acquisition will enable the Township to further a greenway and recreation corridor along the Plum Run, which could someday provide a connection between the Brandywine Creek and West Chester University (WCU) South Campus. The Strode’s Mill site could even provide a parking area and trailhead for this recreation corridor. Improving and enhancing this corridor is one of the initiatives recommended in the Brandywine Creek Greenway Strategic Action Plan prepared by the Brandywine Conservancy.
INFORMATION & DOCUMENTS
- Strodes Barn Stewardship Assessment
- Strodes Barn Rendering
- Chester County Brandywine Battle Plan
- Friends of Strode’s Mill
- County Lines Article (October 2017)