Benner Township was called in honor of General Philip Benner who established Rock iron works on Spring creek, within the limits of the present township as early as 1793. The first iron he manufactured he packed on horses over the mountains to Pittsb urgh. A forge was erected by Daniel Turner on Spring creek near what is known as Roopsburg, with saw and grist mill, as early as 1795. The township of Benner was erected at April Term, 1853. The premises on which General Benner's iron works were e rected now belong to Major William F. Reynolds, of Bellefonte. They were known as Rock iron works. In 1875, a corner of the township was set off to the new township of College.
(SOURCE: Eleventh Census of the Population of the United States Published by Boroughs and Townships, in Connection with a Business Directory of the Same, Bellefonte, Pa., 1890.)
1860-1,193 1870-1,362 1880-1,287 1890-1,222 1900-1,242 1910-1,215 1920-1,469 1930-1,794 1940-1,940 1950-1,814 1960-2,397 1970-2,479 1980-3,464 1990-5,085 2000-5,217
(SOURCE: U.S. Census of Population, Bureau of the Census, U.S. Department of Commerce.)
Villages or towns within Benner Township include Bel-Air Hills, Sunset Park, Peru, Lauvertown, Rock, Rock Forge, Rockview, Roopsburg, Hunter's Park and Valley View. For a further discussion of these, see Paul M. Dubbs, Where to Go and Place-Names of Centre County, 1961.)
Tax assessment records for Benner Township from 1854 forward can be found in the basement of the Centre County Library and Historical Museum in Bellefonte. Persons wishing to use these records must first sign the Guest Researcher register in the Pennsylvania Room.