Manheim was founded in 1760 by Henrich Wilhelm Stiegel, who reportedly named the town for the area of Germany where he grew up and envisioned it to be an industrial town. With this goal in mind, Stiegel built the American Flint Glass Manufactory. Although it produced the Stiegel glass that is still a highly-prized collectible today, the factory failed in 1774. Stiegel suffered this and many other financial losses before dying, but he had planted seeds of schools and businesses that bolstered a growing culture in Manheim.
Between 1800 and the end of the Civil War, Manheim flourished as an industrial center, supporting businesses that sold bricks, hats, and grandfather clocks, as well as tanners, potters, blacksmiths and wagon shops. The Columbia and Reading Railroad came to town in 1862, and opened the door to reliable transportation routes for manufactured goods, spurring a boost in the economy. Manheim's industrial base was seriously affected by the Depression in the 1930s, but it remains a trading center for farmers along well-traveled Route 72.
Manheim's history is still evident in the town today, with examples of early log cabins lining its streets, as well as buildings displaying the late Victorian and early 20th Century styles. The town is home to quaint B&Bs and modern hotels, cozy neighborhood restaurants, and a picturesque town square that hosts events throughout the year. Plus, attractions on the outskirts of town are favorites for all ages, and the surrounding northwestern Lancaster County area is a treasure in and of itself. Explore the countryside using our Historic Rivertowns and Western Villages trail, which weaves through towns, farmland, and covered bridges.
- Cruisin' the Square, late October
- Holiday Tree Lighting, Saturday following Thanksgiving
- New Year's Eve Party, December 31
Manheim Chamber of Commerce