Northern Cambria, Pennsylvania

Coordinates: 40°39′21″N 78°46′46″W / 40.65583°N 78.77944°W / 40.65583; -78.77944
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Northern Cambria, Pennsylvania
Location of Northern Cambria in Cambria County, Pennsylvania.
Location of Northern Cambria in Cambria County, Pennsylvania.
Northern Cambria is located in Pennsylvania
Northern Cambria
Northern Cambria
Coordinates: 40°39′21″N 78°46′46″W / 40.65583°N 78.77944°W / 40.65583; -78.77944
CountryUnited States
 • TypeBorough council
 • MayorLisa Mays
 • Total3.09 sq mi (8.00 km2)
 • Land3.09 sq mi (8.00 km2)
 • Water0.00 sq mi (0.00 km2)
Elevation1,601 ft (488 m)
 • Total3,560
 • Density1,152.10/sq mi (444.89/km2)
Time zoneUTC-5 (Eastern (EST))
 • Summer (DST)UTC-4 (EDT)
ZIP code
Area code814
FIPS code42-55000
GNIS feature ID2086609[2]

Northern Cambria is a borough in Cambria County, Pennsylvania, United States. It is part of the Johnstown, Pennsylvania Metropolitan Statistical Area. The population was 3,835 at the 2010 census.[4]


The borough of Northern Cambria was incorporated on January 1, 2000. It was formed from the merger of two smaller municipalities, Barnesboro and Spangler. The merger proposal was taken to residents in the 1997 election, passing in Spangler 410-243 and in Barnesboro 466-324.[5] The area was first settled by Europeans in the early-to-middle 19th century. The presence of the West Branch of the Susquehanna River allowed loggers to move their harvest downstream. Small farms developed, but the area changed in the 1890s when mining of the extensive bituminous coal fields in the area became the dominant industry. The mining companies required skilled workers, and many came from Great Britain and Eastern Europe. Railroads were built to transport the coal out, and the town flourished with the influx of money. In the 1980s, the coal industry began a decline, and there has been a subsequent decline in the population of the area. In November 1922, the Reilly Shaft No. 1 mine explosion occurred, killing 78 coal miners.[6]

A pumpkin weighing 1,469 pounds (666 kg) was grown by resident Larry Checkon in 2005 (a world record at that time).[7]


Northern Cambria is located near the northwest corner of Cambria County at 40°39′21″N 78°46′46″W / 40.65583°N 78.77944°W / 40.65583; -78.77944 (40.655813, -78.779472),[8] in the valley of the West Branch of the Susquehanna River, near its headwaters. U.S. Route 219 passes through the borough, leading south 15 miles (24 km) to Ebensburg, the county seat, and north 47 miles (76 km) to DuBois.

According to the United States Census Bureau, Northern Cambria has a total area of 3.0 square miles (7.7 km2), all land.[4]


The local public school district is the Northern Cambria School District. The district has two schools located in the borough of Northern Cambria. The Northern Cambria Elementary/Middle School serves students in grades Pre-K to 8 while the Northern Cambria High School serves students in grades 9 to 12. Surrounding public school districts include:

Students in grades K-8 can also attend the private Northern Cambria Catholic School in Nicktown, 3 miles (5 km) to the south. Some students in grades 9-12 attend the private Bishop Carroll High School in Ebensburg.

Nearby colleges include Mount Aloysius College (Cresson), Saint Francis University (Loretto), Indiana University of Pennsylvania (Indiana), the University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown, Penn State Altoona, and Pennsylvania Highlands Community College (near Johnstown).


Historical population

As of the census[10] of 2019, there were 3,588 people, 1,763 households, and 1,191 families residing in the borough. The population density was 1,401.9 inhabitants per square mile (541.3/km2). There were 1,954 housing units at an average density of 652.4 per square mile (251.9/km2). The racial makeup of the borough was 99.31% White, 0.07% African American, 0.10% Native American, 0.24% Asian, 0.02% Pacific Islander, 0.10% from other races, and 0.17% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.31% of the population.

There were 1,763 households, out of which 28.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 51.3% were married couples living together, 11.9% had a female householder with no husband present, and 32.4% were non-families. 29.3% of all households were made up of individuals, and 17.7% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.37 and the average family size was 2.92.

In the borough the population was spread out, with 22.0% under the age of 18, 8.3% from 18 to 24, 26.0% from 25 to 44, 22.5% from 45 to 64, and 21.2% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 41 years. For every 100 females there were 89.8 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 86.0 males.

The median income for a household in the borough was $24,655, and the median income for a family was $29,917. Males had a median income of $27,214 versus $17,546 for females. The per capita income for the borough was $13,129. About 15.4% of families and 17.7% of the population were below the poverty line, including 29.1% of those under age 18 and 7.4% of those age 65 or over.

Notable people[edit]


Three daily newspapers cover the Northern Cambria borough: the Altoona Mirror, the Johnstown Tribune-Democrat, and the Indiana Gazette. 950 WNCC was the town's radio station since 1950. The station went off the air in 2010. The local NBC affiliate is WJAC-6, the local CBS affiliate is WTAJ-10, the local ABC affiliate is WATM-23, the local PBS station is WPSU-3, and the local Fox affiliate is WWCP-8. Comcast is the cable provider for the borough.


  1. ^ "ArcGIS REST Services Directory". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved October 12, 2022.
  2. ^ a b U.S. Geological Survey Geographic Names Information System: Northern Cambria, Pennsylvania
  3. ^ a b "Census Population API". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved Oct 12, 2022.
  4. ^ a b "Geographic Identifiers: 2010 Demographic Profile Data (G001): Northern Cambria borough, Pennsylvania". U.S. Census Bureau, American Factfinder. Archived from the original on March 18, 2015. Retrieved March 18, 2015.
  5. ^ Brumbaugh, Jocelyn. "'We were promised the world': Nearly 2 decades after consolidation, some issues still haunt Northern Cambria". The Tribune-Democrat. Retrieved 2020-12-21.
  6. ^ Reilly Shaft Explosion, retrieved on December 11, 2008
  7. ^ Big, retrieved on November 15, 2008
  8. ^ "US Gazetteer files: 2010, 2000, and 1990". United States Census Bureau. 2011-02-12. Retrieved 2011-04-23.
  9. ^ "Census of Population and Housing". U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved 11 December 2013.
  10. ^ a b "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31.
  11. ^ "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.

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