If you’re looking for the best things to see and do in Schuylkill County, you’re in the right place!
The county was formed in 1811 and is named in honor of the Schuylkill River.
The county seat is Pottsville, in the heart of Pennsylvania’s anthracite coal region.
On June 21, 1877 the county’s castle-like jail in Pottsville played a central part in what became known as “The Day of the Rope.”
On that day, six men alleged to be part of the “Molly Maguires” (a secret society of Irish miners) were hanged at the jail following a trial that many historians argue was manipulated by coal mine owners to crush unionization attempts in the region.
On a lighter note, the county is also the birthplace of Yuengling beer!
From museums to coal mine tours to America’s oldest brewery, here are 7 of the best things to see and do in Schuylkill County.
Simply click on the blue text links on the map above or in the descriptions below to read more in-depth information about each destination.
1. Pioneer Tunnel Coal Mine Tour
Pioneer Tunnel coal mine has operated as a tourist attraction and living history museum since 1962.
Visitors ride mine cars 1,800 feet inside of Mahanoy Mountain, where they then disembark and take a walking tour of some of the mine’s passageways.
In addition to tours of the coal mine, visitors can also take a sightseeing train excursion that utilizes an authentic coal-fired steam engine to pull passenger cars along narrow-gauge railroad tracks.
2. Ashland Mothers’ Memorial
The Ashland Mothers Memorial is a 7 foot-tall bronze sculpture based on the 1871 painting commonly referred to as “Whistler’s Mother.”
The memorial represents a reverence for motherhood and fondness for one’s hometown.
The sculpture sits on a 3 ton granite slab on a hillside perch above Chestnut Street in Ashland.
3. Museum of Anthracite Mining
The Museum of Anthracite Mining in Ashland is a hidden gem that offers a deep dive into the coal history that shaped the region and the country.
For anyone interested in American industrial history, a visit to this museum is an enlightening and moving experience.
The museum’s hallways and exhibits are thoughtfully curated to not only educate but also immerse visitors in the life and times of coal miners.
4. Yuengling Brewery Tour
Since 1829, the Yuengling Brewery has been operating in Pottsville, Schuylkill County, earning Yuengling the title as “America’s Oldest Brewery.”
Yuengling offers a free one-hour guided tour of this historic and still very-much active brewery in Pottsville, AND you get a few free beer samples (or root beer if you so desire) at the end of the tour!
Tours start across the street from the historic brewery in the equally historic Yuengling Dairy building (now housing the Yuengling museum and gift shop), constructed in 1920 to help the company survive Prohibition (which lasted from 1919 until 1933).
5. Fighter’s Heaven – Muhammad Ali’s Training Camp
Fighter’s Heaven was Muhammad Ali’s 6-acre training camp in Deer Lake, Schuylkill County.
Ali personally laid out the design of the training camp, which eventually grew into a small village of 18 buildings, including a gym, a kitchen/dining hall, a mosque, and cabins for himself, his sparring partners, and his staff and guests.
Today, Fighter’s Heaven has been authentically recreated in a manner similar to how it looked in Muhammad Ali’s heyday, and is operated as a museum to his legacy as a fighter, a philanthropist, and a humanitarian.
6. Jerry’s Classic Cars and Collectibles Museum
The first thing you should know about Jerry’s Classic Cars and Collectibles Museum in Pottsville is that it is MUCH more than just another car museum!
Scattered across two floors of this historic garage along South Center Street you’ll find over 20,000 collectibles spanning the entire 20th century.
That said, there are PLENTY of rare and vintage automobiles on display on the ground floor of this former Studebaker dealership.
7. The Geyser That Isn’t A Geyser
Here’s a fun fact – there are no geysers in Pennsylvania!
That fact hasn’t stopped the Internet from dubbing a bubbly roadside anomaly along Big Mine Run Road in Schuylkill County “the only geyser in Pennsylvania”, but it just isn’t true.
If you do want to take a gander at this not-a-geyser along Big Mine Run Road, it’s located in a residential area on private property, so please view it from the road only.
11 Must-See Attractions in Carbon County is your guide to the best things to see and do in Schuylkill County’s neighbor to the northeast.
The East Paden and West Paden Covered Bridges in Columbia County, known collectively as the “Twin Bridges”, are one of only two sets of twin covered bridges in the United States.
Concrete City is one of the most-famous ghost towns in Pennsylvania, and it lies tucked away in an overgrown, wooded plot of land on the outskirts of Nanticoke, in Luzerne County.
Knoebels Amusement Park near Elysburg is consistently ranked as one of the best amusement parks in the United States.
Did you enjoy this article?
If so, be sure to like and follow PA Bucket List on Facebook, Instagram, and/or Pinterest to learn more about the best things to see and do in Pennsylvania!
Click on any of the icons below to get connected to PA Bucket List on social media.