History of Bradford Woods
The area that was to become Bradford Woods was an original part of the Depreciation lands purchased by Thomas Bradford of Philadelphia in 1800 and thus was part of Marshall Township. Settlers, seeking lands to farm, came in the 1800's, but growth was slow. With the coming of the Harmony Short Line in 1908, the area's appeal as an ideal rustic location for summer homes began to take hold. The North Pittsburgh Reality Company that had purchased lots and advertised both the setting and the modern model of access (the Harmony Line) to the city had encouraged this. People came to spend summers and stayed.
In 1915, with the hope of maintaining the tranquility of the area as it grew, the residents petitioned the court to separate from Marshall Township and become a borough. It has maintained its reputation as a peaceful, close-knit community since that time.
The present Bradford Woods Elementary School was erected in 1956 as a one-level, six-room structure on a seven-acre site. Six years later it was expanded to twelve rooms, and in 1972 expanded again to eighteen rooms. The closure of Marshall Elementary and the transferring of those students to Bradford Woods in 1972 necessitated this. The school was most recently renovated for a 500-student capacity in 1992.
In the late 1980's a special project of the Bradford Woods students and the PFA culminated in the purchase of a log house. It is thought to have been built around 1820 on the Freeport Road north of Hannahstown. It was located on part of the original 417 acre tract owned by Archabald McCall and Peter Gallaher and remained in the Gallgher (Gallaher) family until 1919. Forty-one acres and the log house were purchased by Elmer Montag. His son, Allen Montag, the present owner, sold the log house to the Bradford Woods Parent-Faculty Association in 1986. It has served as a center of studies for the eight elementary schools in the North Allegheny School District and has been visited by many other schools in the area. Restorationist Brad Mooney of Heritage Restoration dismantled, moved the logs, and restored the house on the grounds of Bradford Woods Elementary in the Fall and Winter of the 1986-1987 school year. Funds for the purchase and restoration were raised by the school children through many projects and by the PFA. There were many individual donations in money and services. Money raised by the community during a fourteen year recycling program provided the seed money. The log house was dedicated in June, 1989.