Lackawanna River Watershed: An American Heritage River

Lackawanna in an Algonquin Indian word meaning "where the streams meet". The valley served Indians with rich soil for crops and good hunting of moose, elk, deer, panther, bear, etc. Eventually the area was settled by Europeans and it was not soon after that coal was found. This discovery brought an urban face to much of the valley with farms developing around.

The watershed drains 350 square miles encompassing parts of Susquehanna, Wayne, Lackawanna and Luzerne Counties. 83% is urban and 17% is rural. Along with the 250, 000 people there are still a lot of wildlife. The Lackawanna River Watershed is part of the larger Chesapeake Bay Watershed that encompasses 64,000 square miles.

The Lackawanna River takes its name from Lech-uh-wanna, a Lenni Lenapi word meaning "stream that forks". The Lenapi, an Algonquian speaking tribe, inhabited the Delaware and Upper Susquehanna Valleys at the time of European settlement. The words Lehigh and Lackawaxen may also derive from the same Algonquian word.

The sixty-two mile long Lackawanna River drains a three-hundred fifty square mile watershed in four counties of northeastern Pennsylvania: Susquehanna, Wayne, Lackawanna, and Luzerne.

The River rises in two branches from a number of glacial ponds and wetlands on the Allegheny - Pocono plateau along the Wayne - Susquehanna County line. The east branch flows from Lake Lorain, Bone Pond, Independent Lake, and Dunns Pond to meet the west branch which flows from Fiddle Lake, Lake Lowe, and Lewis Lake. The east and west branches converge at Stillwater Dam near Pennsylvania Route 171 in Union Dale.

Just below the Dam, the Lackawanna passes scenic Stillwater Cliffs and begins its forty mile course through the northern anthracite coal field to its confluence with the Susquehanna River at Coxton between Duryea and Pittston in Luzerne County. The Lackawanna is the largest tributary to the North Branch of the Susquehanna River in Northeastern Pennsylvania. Eventually, the waters of the Lackawanna flow into and through the Chesapeake Bay.

From its sources at an elevation of 2,000 feet above sea level to its confluence with the Susquehanna at an altitude of 500 feet, the Lackawanna River drops an average of 39 feet per mile. The River and its tributaries form a dendritic drainage pattern. The Lackawanna has 76 tributaries. Some of the larger tributaries are Roaring Brook, Spring Brook, Leggett’s Creek, Keyser Creek, Hull Creek, Eddy Creek, Grassy Island Creek, White Oak Run, Aylesworth Creek, Rush Brook, Racket Brook and Fall Brook. The Lackawanna River watershed forms a northern extension of the Appalachian Ridge and Valley Physiographic Province. This province is characterized by long parallel ridges. The LackawannaWyoming Valley forms a physiographic boundary dividing the Allegheny and Pocono Plateau provinces. The mountain ranges which form the valley are on the west the Lackawanna Range and on the east the Moosic Mountains.

The region experienced several eras of glaciation. The last, the Wisconsin Ice Age, began to recede about twelve thousand years ago. The glacier's retreat left the plateaus covered with thousands of lakes, bogs and ponds. The 47 inches of average annual precipitation help to replenish these wetlands and ponds providing a constant or perennial flow to the Lackawanna and many of the other tributary streams in the upper Susquehanna and Delaware basins.

The real story of the Lackawanna begins long before the glaciers of the last ice age. The Appalachian Mountains are one of the oldest geological features on the planet. The mountain building occurred between 250 and 500 million years ago during the Paleozoic era. The rocks of this region were alternately parts of the ocean floor in the Devonian period, the great swamps of the Carboniferous period, or the folded and uplifted sedimentary rocks of the Permian age.

The presence of anthracite coal has had the most significant impact on our present day Lackawanna River. Anthracite was formed from the dead vegetation of the Carboniferous age swamps. As time passed, the swamps were covered with ocean sediments which form the shale and sandstone layers we find between the coal veins. The pressure and heat of the overlying sediments and the folding rise of the Appalachian Mountains gradually turned the vegetation into peat then lignite, bituminous and, here in the northeast region where the geologic pressure was greatest, anthracite-the hardest, highest carbon content of all coal.

The anthracite coal beds of Pennsylvania are known as the Llewellyn formation. In the Lackawanna and Wyoming Valleys, the coal bed sits in an older and harder rock formation known as the Pottsville or Pocono Conglomerate. This hard, whitish capstone is a metamorphic rock compound of quartz pebbles and sand. It resembles a very hard concrete. These rocks are visible around Lake Scranton, along Roaring Brook at Nay Aug Falls, and the Moosic and West Mountain ridge tops. Many large retaining walls, bridge abutments, building foundations and reservoir dams were cut from this very hard stone during the last century.

The boundary between the Pottsville and Llewellyn formations runs along the flank of the Valley about half way up the Mountains. This boundary where the coal veins outcrop was chosen as the site of many of our water supply reservoirs.

The Llewellyn Formation was once estimated to contain two billion tons of coal. Some geologists have speculated that ten to twenty billion tons once existed, but were lost over the ages from erosion and glaciers. The coal seams in the Lackawanna Valley are found at various depths, averaging 30 feet to 700 feet below the surface. The beds are in order from the surface:

Number 1 or Big bed
Number 2
Upper 4 foot
4 foot
14 foot
New County
Dunmore Numbers 1, 2, 3, and 4

The Number 1 bed is found on the east side of the Lackawanna River. It ranges in thickness from 10 to 20 feet in places. It pitches out at or near the surface in some locations. At one spot near the Mercy Hospital in Scranton's Hill Section, it was within 3 feet of the surface. One day in the 1890's, miners dug right into some neighborhood backyards in their quest for coal!

The deepest beds, the Dunmore Number 4 are as much as 800 feet below the surface. The Brisben shaft of the Glen Alden Company in North Scranton and the Grassy Island shaft of the Hudson Coal Company, Olyphant reached the Dunmore Number 4. Today much of the anthracite remaining in the Valley is to be found in the Dunmore veins under 600 feet of mine water.

The Lackawanna Valley is rich in bio-diversity. Situated along a climatalogical boundary between the northern and southern regions of the eastern deciduous forest, the Valley is home to a wide variety of trees, shrubs, and herbaceous plants.

The quotation from Dr. Horace Hollister at the preface of this book sketches an idyllic picture of what the River and its habitat was like at the beginning of the 19th Century. Hemlock, oak and pine formed the canopy forest in the valley, the understory was thick with rhododendron and laurel. Other canopy species such as the American chestnut and elm were also common and plentiful. Much of the original habitat and forest cover was cut for fuel, railroad, mining, and construction uses. Since the early 20th Century, a fairly diverse secondary forest cover has developed. There are a few locations in the Valley where small remnants of the original forest may remain. One or two acres here and there in some steep and remote glens along the mountains hold hemlocks over a century old.

Today a riparian forest shades the River and keeps its waters cool during the hot summers. River birch, red maple, willow, elm, alder and sycamore are found along many reaches of stream where mining and urban development impacts have lessened. Many of the native understory species struggle against Asiatic knot weed, a bamboo like species which has become endemic throughout the Appalachian Mountains. Knot weed grows by both seed and rhizome. The root system sends up new shoots and chokes other species out. A mass of knot weed along the riverbank may look like thousands of individual plants, but may actually be one organism. The acclamation of knot weed to the Appalachian region is a reminder that northeastern China contains a mirror image of Appalachian geologic, topographic and ecologic features, from anthracite coal, to broad leafed deciduous forests.

The upland areas of the Lackawanna River watershed have a variety of plant communities influenced by altitude, soil depth and moisture. Wetlands occur along the River and flood plain and along the Moosic and West Mountains and the Pocono plateau. Wetlands are home to the heath family - sheep laurel, mountain laurel, high bush blueberry, as well as cattails, and water lily. Hemlock, black spruce, tamarak, swamp oak, and black gum form the canopy layer in wetlands and upper tributary stream corridors.

The ridge tops and Pocono plateau are the home of a globally unique dry site plant community: the scrub oak/pitch pine dwarf tree forest. Due to shallow rocky soils and rough weather conditions, the oak and pine which grow along the summits are stunted and only reach five to fifteen feet in height even when fully mature. The ridge tops of the Moosic range also host an Arctic sedge community. Northern grasses, huckleberry, sheep laurel, and other heath plants grow in the sparse soil between outcrops of Pocono Conglomerate. These Arctic plants, including reindeer lichens, are vestiges of the last ice age. The Moosic range is the furthest southern habitat of these plants commonly found in the Adirondacks or northern Quebec.

In addition to the rare scrub tree and heath community along the ridge tops, the River and watershed host a variety of plants which are listed as rare by the Pennsylvania Natural Diversity Inventory. Many of these are wetland or aquatic species. The list includes:

Small floating manna-grass (Glyceria borealis)
Sweet bayberry (Myrica gale)
Many-fruited sedge (Carex Lasiocarpa)
Floating heart (Nymphoides cordata)
Bayonet rush (Juncus militaris)
Jacob's ladder (Polemonium vanbruntiae)
Golden club (Orontium aquaticum)
Water lobelia (Lobelia dortmanna)
Purple Bladderwort (Utricularia purpurea)

The Lackawanna River was once famous for its native brook trout. Early coal prospectors and industrialists such as William and Maurice Wurts and William Henry lived on brook trout as they wandered through the Lackawanna region in search of riches in the 1820's. The iron, coal, rail and textile industries, and the towns which sprung up along the River fairly well destroyed the fishery by 1900. But the Lackawanna has all the ingredients for a vibrant trout fishery. The River has rebounded significantly during the past thirty years. When the mines shut down and the communities built modern sewer treatment systems, the recovery gradually began. The Fish Commission began stocking programs and sporting groups in the upper valley supplemented these efforts. The prevalent species of trout today is the brown trout. This European import is a bit more pollution tolerant than the native brook trout.

The Fish Commission and the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Resources Bureau of Water Resources conducted water quality and fishery studies on the Lackawanna River in 1991. These studies documented some improvements to water quality and fishery habitat. The Fish Commission has since reclassified the Lackawanna between its headwaters and the Lackawanna Avenue Bridge in Olyphant as a high quality cold water fishery with a section between Jessup and Jermyn listed as Class "A" Trophy Trout waters.

The Lackawanna, while predominately a cold water fishery above Scranton, also supports a variety of warm water fish such as bullhead, bass, perch, and blue gill particularly in the lower portions of the river. A number of non-game fish such as darters, dace, chub, minnow, sucker and carp are also found.

The lower three miles of river are severely affected by drainage from the Old Forge Bore hole which dumps over one-hundred million gallons of mine water into the River everyday. Loaded with iron, aluminum, manganese and sulfur, this water is very acidic and extremely low in dissolved oxygen. This reach of the River does not support a fishery or any significant aquatic community.

While the timber wolf, mountain lion, and moose are no longer found in northeastern Pennsylvania forest, the undeveloped areas of the Lackawanna watershed are habitat to over 60 species of mammals and 170 species of birds.

Black bear and white tail deer predominate with fox, beaver, muskrat, mink, and some bobcat. Many urban tolerant species such as squirrel, raccoon, woodchuck, skunk, and opossum are found in the more developed portions of the river corridor. The beaver is also becoming an urban pioneer. A beaver lodge was found along the River in the vicinity of Central Scranton in 1991.

The river otter, a species of special concern in Pennsylvania, is also on the return in both the upper and lower valley.

The Lackawanna is a stop in the Atlantic Flyway for migratory birds. In addition to waterfowl such as Canada goose, a variety of ducks from mallards to mergansers visit the River on seasonal migrations. Many of the ducks are permanent residents. Great blue herons also reside along the Lackawanna. The snowy egret has recently been seen in Scranton. Osprey, a large fish hawk, are making a comeback after being re-introduced in the upper Susquehanna basin by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Coopers hawks, redtail hawk, and the great horned owl are among the predators found on occasion in the watershed. A pair of juvenile American bald eagles were sighted along the River in 1994, the first report of this magnificent bird on the Lackawanna in decades.

One group of birds which is getting more attention from wildlife biologists are the neotropical migratory birds such as the robin, warbler, finch, and verio. These songbirds often use stream corridors and mountain ridges in their migrations. The Lackawanna Valley and the ridge tops may be important corridors for these bird migrations.

The documented human history in the Lackawanna Valley goes back 9,000 years. After the retreat of the last glacier, the area was populated by Neolithic ancestors of Native Americans. Evidence of mid-archaic habitation has been uncovered near the confluence of the Lackawanna and Susquehanna Rivers. Archeologists have discovered pottery shards and primitive tools made from flints and animal bones buried in deep river sediments at the confluence.

During colonial times, the Lackawanna Valley was the southern border of the Six Nations Iroquois Confederacy. The Capouse Clan of the Lenni Lenape Tribe (also called the Delaware Indians) had an extensive village along the River and adjacent uplands in the area near Weston Field and Tripps Park. The Moravian missionary from Bethlehem, Count Zinzendorff visited Capouse in 1755. The French and Indian War and the American Revolution saw the advance of European settlement and geopolitics that gradually subdued the Native Americans. The last effort of the Iroquois to resist occurred in 1778 when a British Tory and Iroquois war party descended on the Wyoming and Lackawanna region destroying the colonial settlements. The following year an American army under General John Sullivan marched from Easton to Wilkes-Barre and up the Susquehanna to the Iroquois heartland in the Finger Lakes region of New York. Sullivan's march destroyed the Iroquois as a political, military and economic power, and opened the way for American settlement in the upper Susquehanna Basin.

This area of Pennsylvania was once claimed by Connecticut and many early settlers were from that state. The Connecticut road into northeast Pennsylvania followed the Minisink Trail from the Delaware River near Port Jervis across the Poconos, up the Wallenpaupack Creek to the summit of Moosic Mountain and down through Dunmore to Capouse Meadows. Settlers widened the native footpaths to accommodate their ox carts. Traces of this road are visible today along the mountain top.

In 1780 the Slocum family established a grist mill along Roaring Brook. The Merrifields, Tripps, and von Storches had farms to the west and north in the villages of Hyde Park and Providence.

In the years between the Revolution, the War of 1812 and the 1820's, the use of anthracite coal became more common. Prior to the 1820's, charcoal had been the chief fuel for both domestic and industrial purposes. The demand for charcoal led to higher prices and deforestation around the coastal population centers. This increasing demand for fuel encouraged the search for alternatives to charcoal. By the 1820's, the anthracite coal of northeastern Pennsylvania was recognized as a viable alternative.

At that time, this part of Pennsylvania was a wild and remote place. The largest towns were Dundaff near Carbondale and Wilkes-Barre. There were only several hundred citizens in these "population centers". In between, over vast distances of heavily forested mountains, were a scattering of farming hamlets with a grist mill or cross road tavern here and there.

Coal and Iron
The coal fields of the Lackawanna Valley were developed between the 1820's and 1850's by two major entrepreneurial groups. The Delaware and Hudson Company formed by William and Maurice Wurts and the Lackawanna Coal and Iron Company headed by George and Selden Scranton.

The development of the anthracite industry lead to breakthroughs in industrial and transportation technology. The Delaware and Hudson Canal Company built a canal from the Hudson River to Honesdale by 1829 and a gravity railroad from Honesdale over the Moosic Mountain to Carbondale, then known as Ragged Island. While the canal and gravity railroad went into operation in 1829, the company had opened its first mine along the river in 1822. Thus began a century of industrial manipulation and impact on the River.

Down stream and a few years later in 1840, the Scrantons, who operated an iron furnace in Oxford, New Jersey, bought the Old Slocum mill site along Roaring Brook. The discovery of iron ore along Stafford Meadow Brook near present day Montage Mountain, led the Scrantons to build new iron furnaces at Slocum Hollow. The site had all the ingredients for industry: water power from the brook, coal deposits on the hillsides and iron ore from the mountains. Their venture nearly failed due to the difficulties in using anthracite to smelt iron and the challenges of marketing a product so far from any significant market. But in 1847 their efforts were rewarded. There was an economic trade war between England and the United States. High demand and tariffs on railroad iron dried up the supply of imported iron T rail from England. The Erie Railroad was building a line from New York City to Buffalo. The Erie was running out of rail near Binghamton and would lose its franchise if the line was not completed. By September 1847, the Scrantons were rolling T rail along Roaring Brook and shipping it north by horse and mule teams and ox carts. Farmers from fifty miles around were hired with their teams and wagons. Lackawanna iron T rail helped the Erie make its deadline with four days to spare!

Aside from the D&H Canal and Gravity Railroad, wilderness roads like the Philadelphia and Great Bend Turnpike which passed up the Wyoming and Lackawanna Valleys and through the notch along Leggetts Creek were still the main transportation routes in and out of the Valley. With the success of the rail making, the Scrantons and their partners began to build the Cobbs Gap and Delaware Railroad up Roaring Brook and across the Poconos to the Delaware Valley and connections with New Jersey railroads. The Lackawanna and Western Railroad was built through the notch and northward to connect with the Erie at Great Bend. In 1852, these roads were merged to become the Delaware Lackawanna and Western Railroad (DL&W).

Railroads and canals followed the rivers and streams in and out of northeast Pennsylvania. The Lackawanna and its tributaries, Roaring Brook, Spring Brook, Leggetts Creek, and Racket Brook all had railroads along them by the 1880's. The confluence area at Coxton saw the growth of a large rail yard for the Lehigh Valley Railroad as well as a canal boat basin on the North Branch Susquehanna Canal. The DL&W rail yard developed between Roaring Brook and the Lackawanna River and is now the site of Steamtown National Historic Site. The Delaware and Hudson (D&H) rail yard developed t Carbondale where Racket Brook joins the River, the original site of Ragged Island. The Pennsylvania Coal Company Gravity Railroad and later the Erie Railroad erected large shops along Roaring Brook in Dunmore, now the site of DeNaples Auto Parts.

Water Supply and Sanitation
While railroad and mining companies developed and communities began to grow, the impacts on the once pure Lackawanna River began to have their effects.

In 1866, the year the boroughs of Hyde Park and Providence merged with Scranton to form the city, the River was declared unfit for public water supply. The expansion of underground mining began to pollute both the River and the drinking well aquifers in the valley. The River had become a convenient depository for the new sewers being built under the streets and roads of the growing towns. This practice continued up to the 1960's!

In order to allow the economic development of the valley to continue, sources of clean potable water needed to be developed. The earliest public utilities began in the late 1850's. Gas companies manufactured coal gas and piped it to homes and businesses for lighting and cooking. Water companies were developed at the same time to serve the growing towns. As mentioned earlier, water supply reservoirs which are still in use today were built along the Moosic and West Mountain ranges just past the geologic boundary of the coal formations. This water supply system and its adjacent watershed, now owned by the Pennsylvania American Water Company, has the capacity to supply the residents of the Lackawanna and Wyoming Valleys with a clean and abundant volume of water.

In recent years, suburban development near some of the reservoir recharge areas has caused water quality problems. Expensive water filtration plants have been built to insure a potable water supply. Concerns for the future vitality of our watershed are important considerations as we enter the 21st Century.

The wisdom of building the water supply system in the last century allowed and encouraged the growth and development of the Lackawanna Valley. The story at the other end of the pipe was somewhat different. By the 1920's, vast stretches of the Lackawanna River were dead. Mine drainage, silt and erosion from strip mines and coal breakers, municipal sewage, garbage and slaughter house waste wreaked havoc on the once pure Lackawanna, all in the name of progress.

By the time of World War I, modern sanitation practices and technology had begun to emerge. Some progressive communities developed municipal sewage treatment authorities and plants.

Primary treatment technology existed to remove wastes and chlorinate waste water before discharging into our streams, lakes and rivers. Public health regulations gave the state authority to require local communities to develop and install sanitary treatment works.

The Pennsylvania General Assembly passed a clean streams law in 1937. This act was one of the first in the country to consolidate water quality regulations and require enforcement of its provisions. It exempted coal companies, however.

Beginning in 1920, numerous civic improvement associations began to advocate the cleanup and restoration of the Lackawanna River. By the time of the Depression in the 1930's, the communities of the Lackawanna Valley did not have the taxing ability to develop the necessary treatment facilities. Local officials resisted the efforts of citizens' groups and state bureaucrats to do what needed to be done. Many argued that the pollution from the mines neutralized the health threats from the sewage. This "two wrongs make a right" argument continued into the 1960's.

What was true for the Lackawanna Valley towns was common place around the country as well. Federal legislation eventually provided state and local agencies with the funding needed to make the construction of publicly owned sewage treatment facilities affordable. The City of Scranton and Dunmore Borough created the Scranton Sewer Authority in 1966, one hundred years after the River was declared undrinkable - a fitting birthday present for the city. The Lackawanna County Commissioners created the Lackawanna River Basin Sewer Authority a few years later to serve towns in the mid and upper valley as well as Moosic. Taylor and Old Forge joined with Avoca, Duryea, and Pittston Township in Luzerne County to form the Lower Lackawanna Sanitary Authority in 1975. Communities in the Abingtons formed a joint authority in 1975 as well.

Townships in the north Pocono area developed separate authorities and have encountered more problems due in part to the topography and development patterns of this growing area. With the Penn Vest program developed by Governor Robert Casey, our local governments now have the funding assistance necessary to keep in compliance with clean water requirements.

The End of Mining
The years around 1960 were significant for the Lackawanna River. On January 29, 1959 the Knox Mine Disaster occurred in Pittston. Miners were stealing pillars of coal from under the bed of the Susquehanna River when a charge set to loosen coal caused the riverbed to collapse into the mine. This disaster permanently flooded the underground mines in the Wyoming and lower Lackawanna Valley. It was the death knell for what was left of the anthracite industry. The last underground mine in the Lackawanna Valley, the Continental Mine, shut down in 1966. (This mine is now the Lackawanna Coal Mine at McDade Park).

With the end of underground mine operations, the thousands of mine tunnels and voids under the valley filled up with ground water and surface water which infiltrates through strip mines and stream beds. All this water has to go somewhere, and that somewhere is the River! From Forest City to Duryea, there are over a dozen tunnels, shafts or bore holes where mine drainage flows unchecked into the River. There are also hundreds of other locations where mine water seeps through hillside springs and into nearby streams.

The body of water under the Lackawanna Valley is known as the Northern Anthracite Mine Pool. If it were a lake on the surface, it would rival one of New York's Finger Lakes in size -- at least in area. As water percolates through the abandoned mine voids, it picks up metallic compounds and minerals from the coal and the rocks between layers of coal. Iron, aluminum, manganese and sulfur compounds are dissolved in the mine water. The mine pool water is largely anaerobic or lacking in dissolved oxygen. Mine water is also highly acidic having a pH between 3 and 6. When this water reaches the surface and enters a river or stream, the metallic sulfide compounds tend to seek out dissolved oxygen in the surface water. The acidic sulfides bond with the dissolved oxygen and precipitate out of solution. This chemical reaction coats the rocks in and along the riverbanks with a characteristic yellow-orange coloring. Miners called the substance "yellow boy".

On August 18, 1955 Hurricane Diane traveled up the east coast and rained itself out over the Lackawanna Valley and the Pocono Mountains. Roaring Brook and the Lackawanna River surged out of their banks during the night. Large portions of Carbondale, the Mid-Valley and Scranton were flooded out. Thousands of residents were left homeless, entire neighborhoods were destroyed never to be rebuilt.

Flooding is a regular occurrence along rivers and streams. Sometimes there is just too much water. The Lackawanna Valley has experienced major flooding every twenty-five to thirty years, sometimes more frequently. Because flat level land is at a premium in the Valley, many neighborhoods were built on the river flood plain. The floods of 1902, 1936, 1942, 1955 and 1975 caused widespread damage along the River. Local citizens and officials pressed state and federal agencies for a flood protection program. Following the flooding of 1955, the United States Army Corps of Engineers constructed a levee and flood wall system along Roaring Brook at its confluence with the Lackawanna River in South Scranton "Flats" neighborhood.

In 1960, the Corps of Engineers built Stillwater Dam where the east and west branches of the Lackawanna join near Uniondale. Stillwater is basically a dry dam designated to hold back the immense volume of water from a one-hundred year storm. Its capacity was tested in 1972, 1975 and again after the blizzard of the century in March 1993.

Stillwater and other state flood protection levees have provided a margin of security for many downstream flood plain neighborhoods.

The flooding which occurred after Hurricane Gloria in September of 1985 had much to do with subsequent development in the Mid-Valley and the Abingtons above the Scranton neighborhoods. In addition, several new bridges in Scranton at Albright Avenue and Poplar Street may have contributed to the 1985 flooding. The River flooded in January 1996 after a mid-winter thaw and heavy rainstorm. Citizen groups petitioned state and federal officials for additional flood control projects. Additional levees are proposed in the Plot and Green Ridge neighborhoods in Scranton and in Dickson City. Several groups of homes along the river were demolished using Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) funds.

Knowledge of the natural and human history along the Lackawanna River can lead us to recognize and benefit from the dynamics of the River's relationship with us. An understanding of the River's personality can help our community realize the values we receive from this natural resource. As we come to respect the River, we can see what it offers to us for today and tomorrow.

Note: Content of this document may be referenced at and is part of the Lackawanna River Guide Book, 2nd Edition (