This is the view up Oxford Avenue, with the grand old Fox Chase hotel in the middle (where a Dunkin Donuts now stands) in a photo taken about 1910. The hotel, which was started in 1705, was a relic of days when a coach-and-four would arrive at its doorway, perhaps with a coterie of hunters who would that weekend ride to the hounds.
The Huntingdon Valley Hunt was one of three major clubs in the greater Philadelphia community devoted to riding down the elusive red fox. The hotel also greeted guests who arrived on the Newtown Line of the Reading, which came to the community in 1876. The building was razed, in the name of progress, in 1939.
Fox Chase traces its beginnings to a group of Swedish settlers arriving in the middle 1600s. Built at the junction of Oxford Pike and Huntingdon Pike, both toll roads, it grew because it offered good access to transportation. That the roads remain heavily traveled even today testifies to the value in travel.
The oldest known existing building in Fox Chase is the Blue Ox Brauhaus, which was built as an inn in 1683. The two roads already mentioned were named for roads or areas in England. The third main road, Rhawn Street, was named for a banker, William Rhawn, who built a summer home named Knowlton at the corner of Verree Road and Rhawn Street.