In 2018 it is hard to imagine a time when it was possible to ride a horse down Main Street in Hellertown, but that’s the type of transportation that existed in 1879, when one of the borough’s first ordinances was adopted.
Ordinance #18 prohibited “the reckless driving or riding of horses on Borough streets.” Interestingly, one half of the fine the rider or driver received was to be “paid to the informer.”
Imagine receiving half the payment for reporting a driver fined for disobeying a pedestrian safety law or reckless driving on Rt. 412 today?
In 1879, the introduction of automobiles was still about 20 years away and the borough had only been an incorporated municipality for seven years. Over the next 140 years, hundreds more laws would be written.
“While a great many deal with the opening of new streets, curb and gutter installations, taxation, administration, etc., there are a number that are interesting and serve as a historical background to the progress that has been made,” it was noted in “Hellertown, Pa. Centennial, 1872-1972,” a commemorative booklet from which this information was culled.