Lehigh University and Bethlehem Steel

Bethlehem Steel Stacks

As many of you probably know the old Bethlehem Steel plant is located not all that far away from campus and was once a thriving business that shaped life in Bethlehem for a long time. But what many of you may not know is that Bethlehem Steel has had some big impacts on Lehigh University.

One of the first things is Lehigh’s classes typically start at 10minutes after the hour. The reason for this is that this would allow workers who would get done with a shift, on the hour, at Bethlehem Steel, time to get to classes at Lehigh. Now, if the workers walked, this is quite a feat because it is about about 0.75 to 1 mile uphill  from the plant to campus. Now it takes me, running, about 7 minutes to run from the plant to the bottom of campus. They must have had to move pretty quick to get to class in time.

Another impact that Bethlehem Steel had on Lehigh University is one that I am sure that many people have not heard of, I did not hear of it till recently. It is that the staff gets off of work at 4:45. The reason for this is that many of the secretaries that worked at Lehigh were the wives of the managers of Bethlehem Steel. Bethlehem Steel managers would get off at 5:00 so Lehigh ended at 4:45 so that the wives could go and meet their husbands at the plant.

If anybody reads this and knows of any other surprising connections between Lehigh University and Bethlehem Steel please respond. I definitely would like to hear it.

#LehighUniversityHistory #BethlehemSteel #LehighUniversityandBethlehemSteel


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