The Laurel Mountain ski area, the first major ski resort in western Pennsylvania, was formerly owned and operated by General Richard K. Mellon. Started in 1939 as a private facility by Rolling Rock, it was opened to the public following World War II and became popularly known as the "Ski Capital of Pennsylvania." It served thousands of skiers from the Pittsburgh region.
In September of 1963, General Mellon leased this tract of land and all its improvements to the Commonwealth. In the summer of 1964, he gave the property to the Commonwealth.
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