historic residential section of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S., extending for more than a mile along Germantown Avenue (formerly High Street). The site was first settled by German Pietists led by Francis Daniel Pastorius in 1683, and the development of handicraft industries (weaving, tanning, and wagon building) led to prosperity. There William Rittenhouse built (1690) the first paper mill in the British colonies; Christopher Sower and his son established one of the colonies' largest printing presses (1738) and printed America's first European-language Bible (1743); and Jacob Bey, an employee of Sower, was the first colonial manufacturer of printed type. On October 4, 1777, George Washington's Continental Army unsuccessfully fought the Battle of Germantown in an effort to break the defenses of British-occupied Philadelphia
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