The Derry area was originally occupied by the Susquehannocks, an
Iroquois-speaking tribe. By 1675, the Iroquois had destroyed the Susquehannocks as a nation and no other major tribes settled in the
Derry area after that time.

In 1681, King Charles II granted William Penn the land of Pennsylvania in payment of a debt owed to Penn's late father. Penn established a colony and acquired land between the Susquehanna and Delaware Rivers that included Derry.

In 1729, the proprietors of Pennsylvania created Derry Township as part of Lancaster County. In 1785, Dauphin County evolved from Lancaster
County. At this time Derry Township became a Township of the Second Class governed by a Board of Supervisors.

Derry Township consists of well-kept farms in a rural setting with the "village" of Hershey as its focal point. Hershey has no political jurisdiction
of its own. Hershey is a direct result of a vision of Milton Snavely Hershey who was born in 1857. Mr. Hershey had several unfortunate business ventures until he started the successful Lancaster Caramel Company. He sold that company and relocated to Derry Township where he founded Hershey Chocolate Company in 1903.

Hershey transformed into a well-planned community with provisions for safety, health and recreation of it's citizens. Utilities and services for the convenience of the townspeople were also included in the plan.

Mr. Hershey also established two trusts; The Milton Hershey School Trust and M.S. Hershey Foundation which resulted in the formation of
The Milton Hershey School, Hershey Junior College, Hershey Museum of American Life and the M.S. Hershey Medical Center which arrived 30 years later.


  • There are 125.24 miles of roadways in Derry Twp
    (both township and state owned)

  • Derry Twp encompasses approximately 26 square miles

  • The township population according to the 1990 census is 18,408


Atlantic City, NJ 220 mi Baltimore, MD 89 mi
Boston, MA 393 mi Carlisle, PA 37 mi
Chesapeake Bay, MD 87 mi Disneyworld, FL 1008 mi
Gettysburg, PA 55 mi Harrisburg, PA 14 mi
Lake Cordorus, PA 39 mi New York City, NY 175 mi
Niagara Falls, NY 305 mi PA Dutch Country 31 mi
Philadelphia, PA 103 mi Pittsburgh, PA 207 mi
Pocono Mountains, PA 130 mi Seven Springs Resort, PA 175 mi
Ski Roundtop, PA 14 mi Valley Forge, PA 90 mi
Washington, DC 121 mi Williamsburg, VA 275 mi
York, PA 51 mi


Cape May, NJ 174 mi
Long Island Beach, NJ 176 mi
Ocean City, MD 194 mi
Rehobeth Beach, DE 156 mi
Virginia Beach, VA 322 mi
Wildwood, NJ 171 mi