Historic Rose Valley

Thunderbird Lodge is a building of historical and architectural significance in the utopian community of Rose Valley, Delaware County. tribIn 1904, architect Will Price converted an existing circa-1790 stone barn into studios for the artists Charles H. and Alice Barber Stephens. Appended to this, he designed a rambling fieldstone-and-stucco house, including a 3-story octagonal stair tower that joined the wings and served all five levels.
Thunderbird Lodge was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1989.
Randall Vernon House (c.1700)
with modifications by Will Price in 1901,
Native Americans of the Leni Lenape tribe lived in the area when Europeans began arriving. The Great Minquas Path, passed though the site of the present borough, became a major trade route along which furs were carried by Native Americans to European traders on the Schuylkill and Delaware rivers.

The Hedgerow Theatre as it is today
with entrance by Will Price. Hedgerow
is the first resident repertory country
in the nation. It attracts over
25,000 people a year to it performances.
Soon after William Penn received his charter for the Colony of Pennsylvania, three brothers, Thomas, Robert, and Randall Vernon, received land grants from Penn to settle over 900 acres in the present borough of Rose Valley and Nether Providence Township.

Randall Vernon's house was built before 1700, and still stands along with others including the “Bishop White House,” circa 1695.

In 1901 Rose Valley was founded as an Arts and Crafts community by architect William L. Price, who bought 80 acres of land around the former Rose Valley textile mill. Price was a follower of Henry George’s economics (Georgism) which believed in a single-tax ideal. Though the system was never established, the community became part of the Arts and Crafts Movement and included many notables such as artist and furniture designer Wharton Esherick and actor and director Jasper Deeter, who went on to found the Hedgerow Theatre.

Price became the principle architect of the Rose Valley community, and modified several of its buildings including the Bishop House and the entrance to the Hedgerow Theatre. He also went on to become a nationally renowned architect who along with his brother was responsible for the design of most of the houses in North Wayne, Delaware County, many of the elegant homes of South Wayne, and the Armory in Media (now the Veteran's Museum and Trader Joe's), as well as the Marlborough-
Great House (workers’ living quarters) 1902
Blenheim Hotel in Atlantic City (demolished in 1979).

The Borough of Rose Valley and the Thunderbird Lodge are both listed on the National Historic Register.

The Rose Valley Museum & Historical Society is happy to arrange a guided walking tour for groups of 4 to 25 people.  Be aware that we are a creek valley with steep and unimproved pathways; good legs are essential. Tours would last 1-2 hours depending on enthusiasm and stamina, and cost $20/person, $15/member and $10/student with current ID.

For more information: info@rosevalleymuseum.orginfo@rosevalleymuseum.org

If you wish to contact us please write us at:
The Rose Valley Historical Society
PO Box 62
Moylan, PA 19063 USA