Ephrata ĕf´rətə [key], borough (1990 pop. 12,133), Lancaster co., SE Pa., in a prosperous farm area; inc. 1891. There is varied manufacturing. A noted semimonastic religious community was founded (c.1732) there by Seventh-Day Baptists under the leadership of Johann Conrad Beissel . This austere colony, the Ephrata Cloisters, was famous for its music and established (1745) one of the earliest printing presses in the country. The well-preserved buildings are maintained as a monument by the state.
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