STACKER (WBRE/WYOU) — After the completion of the 1860 census and the election of President Abraham Lincoln, America imploded.

Eleven southern states seceded from the Union in 1861, instigating four bloody years of the Civil War and fundamentally altering the social history of the U.S. The estimates of deaths caused by the Civil War begin around 600,000, but some claim as many as 750,000 individuals died throughout the conflict.

With so many families looking for a new start after combat finally ended and approximately 4 million Black Americans emancipated from slavery, it was time for many Americans to look for a new home to put down roots. The obvious choice for many was to move west, where there was more land to buy, settle, and cultivate.

Many traveled by covered wagon, spending months on the dusty trail. Others who could afford better accommodations took a 25-day ride by stagecoach. All of them picked new cities and towns to make their homes, spreading the U.S. population more evenly across different states and territories.

On May 10, 1869, the first transcontinental railroad route across the United States was completed, ushering in a new era of transportation. The project was completed ahead of schedule and under budget, though with the loss of many lives, including those of the many Irish and Chinese immigrants hired to work 12-hour days in the hot western sun.

Riding by steam engine, passengers could cross the entire country in four days, enabling waves of Americans and immigrants to quickly occupy land that would otherwise take months to settle.

The largest city in Pennsylvania ranked #2 among all cities nationwide in 1870. Of the 100 largest cities in the U.S., 9 were in Pennsylvania. Keep reading to find out more about the historic metropolitan landscape in your home state or check out the data on your own on our siteGitHub, or data.world.

Group of young women out for a trip in a horse drawn Surrey

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#25. Hazel, Luzerne County

– Total population: 7,110 (#290 nationwide)
— Male population: 3,902
— Female population: 3,208
— Child population, ages 5-18: 2,321

#24. Hickory, Mercer County

– Total population: 7,700 (#268 nationwide)
— Male population: 4,093
— Female population: 3,607
— Child population, ages 5-18: 2,319

Group of men seated in warehouse

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#23. Danville (borough), Montour County

– Total population: 8,436 (#240 nationwide)
— Male population: 4,280
— Female population: 4,156
— Child population, ages 5-18: 2,558

#22. Birmingham (borough), Allegheny County

– Total population: 8,603 (#233 nationwide)
— Male population: 4,439
— Female population: 4,164
— Child population, ages 5-18: 2,746

#21. Titusville, Crawford County

– Total population: 8,639 (#230 nationwide)
— Male population: 4,713
— Female population: 3,926
— Child population, ages 5-18: 2,123

People standing at dry goods store

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#20. Mahanoy, Schuylkill County

– Total population: 9,400 (#203 nationwide)
— Male population: 5,154
— Female population: 4,246
— Child population, ages 5-18: 3,201

#19. Chester, Delaware County

– Total population: 9,485 (#198 nationwide)
— Male population: 4,660
— Female population: 4,825
— Child population, ages 5-18: 2,811

#18. East Birmingham (borough), Allegheny County

– Total population: 9,488 (#197 nationwide)
— Male population: 4,884
— Female population: 4,604
— Child population, ages 5-18: 2,938

#17. Cornplanter, Venango County

– Total population: 10,100 (#182 nationwide)
— Male population: 5,563
— Female population: 4,537
— Child population, ages 5-18: 2,273

Two men standing in front of variety store

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#16. Wilkesbarre (borough), Luzerne County

– Total population: 10,174 (#175 nationwide)
— Male population: 5,185
— Female population: 4,989
— Child population, ages 5-18: 2,871

#15. Altoona, Blair County

– Total population: 10,610 (#164 nationwide)
— Male population: 5,271
— Female population: 5,339
— Child population, ages 5-18: 3,197

#14. Norristown (borough), Montgomery County

– Total population: 10,753 (#159 nationwide)
— Male population: 4,950
— Female population: 5,803
— Child population, ages 5-18: 3,050

#13. Easton (borough), Northampton County

– Total population: 10,987 (#156 nationwide)
— Male population: 5,325
— Female population: 5,662
— Child population, ages 5-18: 3,216

#12. York, York County

– Total population: 11,003 (#154 nationwide)
— Male population: 5,192
— Female population: 5,811
— Child population, ages 5-18: 3,167

Group of men in front of a billiard parlor

15 / 25Underwood Archives // Getty Images

#11. Pottsville (borough), Schuylkill County

– Total population: 12,384 (#133 nationwide)
— Male population: 5,881
— Female population: 6,503
— Child population, ages 5-18: 3,844

Young man operating a printing press

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#10. Allentown, Lehigh County

– Total population: 13,884 (#111 nationwide)
— Male population: 6,926
— Female population: 6,958
— Child population, ages 5-18: 4,044

Group of workmen seated and standing

17 / 25Universal History Archive/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

#9. Williamsport, Lycoming County

– Total population: 16,030 (#96 nationwide)
— Male population: 8,120
— Female population: 7,910
— Child population, ages 5-18: 4,284

Adults jumping rope on sidewalk

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#8. Erie, Erie County

– Total population: 19,646 (#75 nationwide)
— Male population: 9,886
— Female population: 9,760
— Child population, ages 5-18: 5,835

#7. Lancaster, Lancaster County

– Total population: 20,233 (#70 nationwide)
— Male population: 9,538
— Female population: 10,695
— Child population, ages 5-18: 6,251

#6. Harrisburg, Dauphin County

– Total population: 23,104 (#57 nationwide)
— Male population: 11,103
— Female population: 12,001
— Child population, ages 5-18: 6,476

#5. Reading, Berks County

– Total population: 33,930 (#36 nationwide)
— Male population: 16,525
— Female population: 17,405
— Child population, ages 5-18: 10,094

Men standing next to horse drawn carriages in front of shops

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#4. Scranton, Luzerne County

– Total population: 35,092 (#35 nationwide)
— Male population: 18,478
— Female population: 16,614
— Child population, ages 5-18: 10,175

#3. Allegheny, Allegheny County

– Total population: 53,180 (#23 nationwide)
— Male population: 26,151
— Female population: 27,029
— Child population, ages 5-18: 15,997

Lithograph of Pittsburgh

24 / 25Otto Krebs/Library of Congress // Wikimedia Commons

#2. Pittsburgh, Allegheny County

– Total population: 86,076 (#16 nationwide)
— Male population: 43,722
— Female population: 42,354
— Child population, ages 5-18: 25,254

Town Hall at Broad and Market Street in Philadelphia

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#1. Philadelphia, Philadelphia County

– Total population: 674,022 (#2 nationwide)
— Male population: 320,379
— Female population: 353,643
— Child population, ages 5-18: 182,821