May 30, 2019

Learn More About Robert Pfeifle and Bethlehem’s Other Mayors

A plaque on the City’s South Side honors Mayor Robert Pfeifle (1930-1950).

We were happy to see news of a plaque dedicated to Mayor Robert Pfeifle yesterday! The plaque went up in the Greenway near the place where he lived on the City’s South Side. Mayor Pfeifle certainly had an eventful tenure, serving as the City’s Mayor for five consecutive terms (1930-1950) through an era that saw much tumult both locally (significant crime) and nationally (the Great Depression, World War II). See below for the full text of the plaque and see here for BAPL’s page with portraits of all of Bethlehem’s mayors.

Born in Almont, Pa., Bob was a farm boy with an eighth grade education. He came to Bethlehem as a simple carpenter where he built 800 homes. Bob served as City Councilman and was elected Mayor five consecutive terms from 1930 to 1950. He halted crime and corruption which defined the south side in the roaring ’20s, guide the City through the Great Depression of the ’30s, then World War II and the difficult peace time recovery. Bob fostered the erection of the star on South Mountain, thus naming Bethlehem “Christmas City.” He lived Nearby on Webster Street.

-Memorial by the Pfeifle Family


Local History