The Founding Story of Jefferson Borough
York Pennsylvania

Frederick Kraft (1776-1838) was the founder of Jefferson. He was a Baltimore native and is listed in the 1808 Baltimore directory as a tavern keeper. In 1812, this piece of land, now known as the town of Jefferson, was nothing more than a crossroads and had been used for half a century for the commercial trade between Baltimore and York. In fact, Codorus whiskey found its way to Baltimore markets by way of this route.

On February 1, 1812, Peter Hamm of Codorus Township sold the 23 acres of land that contained the crossroads to Kraft for $675.00. Kraft quickly established a tavern and store (which is no longer standing). It is assumed that he knew that a tavern, store, and important crossroads were standard ingredients in the founding of a new town. In 1814 Kraft hired John L. Hinkle (1781-1846), a Hanover surveyor, to lay out a town on the crossroads.

Frederick Kraft named the town for Thomas Jefferson because of the strong Democratic ties of the residents. However, in 1866, when the town was incorporated, the name Jefferson was already taken from a town in Greene County near Pittsburgh. So, the residents of the “York County”Jefferson chose “Codorus”, as its postal address, since it is in Codorus Township.

Kraft spent the last 22 years of his life in Jefferson and died in July of 1838.



The public is invited to see the opening and viewing of the Jefferson Borough 1991 Time Capsule.
   Date:   July 13 (Wednesday)
   Time:   7:00 pm
   Place:   Borough Parking Lot 
           48 Baltimore Street
150 YEARS 
The Borough will be celebrating it's Sesquicentennial on August 20th, 2016 starting on the Borough Square with a ceremony starting at 10:00 am.  Following the Ceremony everyone will be invited to the Jefferson Ball Fields for a live Civil War Re-enactment.  The Lions Club will offer chicken dinners to those that purchase tickets in advance and a free chicken dinner to local military veterans from Jefferson, Codorus Township and North Codorus Township (a ticket is required in advance).  There will also be hamburgers and hotdogs available to purchase along with free water to drink.  You may order your chicken dinners by calling:
   Borough Office (229-0545)
   Pat Roser (229-2049)
   Anne Loeffler (229-2033)
   Marlyn Stauffer (229-2481) 
Questions may be directed to the Borough office 229-0545 or email
The county has available funding for homeowners and renters to help weatherize your homes.  Contact York County Planning Commission at 717-771-9870 and ask for the Weatherization Program.