Arthur Wiki
Messy room "Clean your room!"

This article needs to be improved. Specifically, it needs: A lot of speculation needs to be removed, and the whole page needs to be rewritten from an in-universe perspective.
Help Arthur and edit this page!

Elwood City
Elwood City from above
Location United States of America[1][2][3][4]
Type City
Administrator Mayor Hirsch
Residents 60,000[5]
First appearance Arthur's Nose (books)
"Arthur's Eyes" (TV series)

Elwood City is a small fictitious city located in the United States of America. It is where Arthur Read, his family and friends live and grow up.

Elwood City is home to the Elwood City Grebes, Lakewood Elementary School, The Sugar Bowl, the Elwood City Public Library, the Ice Cream Shop, and various other places and businesses.


Getsmart -elwood swamp

Swampland before Elwood City was founded.

Main article: History of Elwood City

The history of Elwood City dates back to the 1800s, when Buffalo Bill passed through the area during his tour of the country performing for locals.[6] The city was officially founded in 1903 by Jacob Katzenellenbogan, who wanted it to be named Elmwood City.[7] The growth of the city was heavily influenced by the logging industry, transforming the area from swampland to a bustling city.

Elwood City celebrates its centennial with a historical school musical, performed by Arthur and his classmates.[7]

Mayor Hirsch is the current mayor of Elwood City during Arthur's third grade year. He is still in office twenty years later, when Muffy Crosswire is running for mayor in "All Grown Up."



The mountainous terrain of the region.

The geographic area of Elwood City consists of mountains to the north, Moose Mountain to the south, Bear Lake and Button Island to the west, and farmland to the east. The city itself is located in the formerly swampy valley between the mountainous areas. The city is in an area affected by tropical weather, as at least two hurricanes have impacted the region,[8][9] but all four seasons are experienced throughout the year.[10][11][12][13]

Though the exact whereabouts of the city have never been explicitly stated in the books or television series, Elwood City has been confirmed to be located in the state of Pennsylvania, much like creator Marc Brown’s hometown.[14][15][16] It also bears strong resemblance to other locations throughout eastern U.S. and Canada.

  • Marc Brown was raised in Erie, Pennsylvania, and there are numerous examples of specific real-world inspirations in Elwood City:
    • Mill Creek Mall is a reference to Millcreek Mall in Erie.
    • Lakewood Elementary School is based on the former Lakewood Elementary School, where Brown attended school as a child.
    • There are at least 15 schools in Elwood City, according to "Elwood City Turns 100!" Erie City School District is also comprised of the same number of schools.
    • The Elwood City bus in "Lost!" is based on the Flxible New Look transit buses. Erie, Pennsylvania had several of this type of bus built between 1967 and 1973, some of which might still have been operating around the time this episode was created. Flxible went defunct in 1996, one year before the episode aired.
    • Francine and Harry Mills report on a horse race in Erie.
  • In "Arthur Meets Mister Rogers," Fred Rogers says that Jane Read grew up in his neighborhood. Rogers in real life is known to have lived in Latrobe, Pennsylvania, near Pittsburgh.
  • Some mail drop-boxes in Elwood City are colored red[17], which resembles the collection boxes used by the Canada Post.
  • The map of the Elwood City-Crown city region strongly resembles that of the Canadian city of Montreal, Quebec.
  • It is located at the confluence of multiple rivers, like Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

    Map of Montreal, Quebec

    The Long Road Home 100

    Map of Elwood City

Other references to the approximate location of Elwood City are as follows:



  • Bowl City: A bowling alley. Catherine's 16th birthday party was held here.[18]
  • Mill Creek Mall is the main mall in Elwood City, featuring multiple stores and shops inside.
  • Perske's Kitchen Shop: A shop owned by Mrs. Perske where Arthur's dad bought a cake plate for a wedding he was catering.[19]
  • Crosswire Motors: An automobile dealership owned by Ed Crosswire. Arthur's mother Jane is a work-at-home tax accountant and one of Ed's employees. It is located in Northeast Elwood City.
  • Ice Cream Shop: An ice cream shop owned and operated by the Brain's mother, Mrs. Powers.
  • The Sugar Bowl: A dessert parlor where Arthur and his friends often go out for dessert. It is located in northeast Elwood City.
  • Salon de Beauté: A hair salon owned by Flossie, who is also a hairdresser, and the place where Muffy gets her hair done. The name of this place is French for "Beauty Salon", and it often plays French-style music inside.[20]
  • Tastee Cone: An unseen ice cream parlor and retailer where Francine purchased the lamp that involved an ice cream cone, shortly before it went out of business.[21]
  • Best Repair Shop: An automobile repair shop owned by a mechanic named Joe, who once attempted to repair the Read family's car.[22]
  • Jack's Joke Shop: A store that sells prank items, neighbored by the ice cream shop.
  • Meteor Comix: A comic book store where Arthur and D.W. bought their first comic books.
  • Chickin Lickin'/Sticky Chicken: a fried chicken restaurant chain. There is one store 5 minutes away from The Sugar Bowl, and one in the Mill Creek Mall.[23]
  • Billy's Burger Barn: a fast food, burger restaurant.
  • Manny's Diner: a diner owned by Manny. It is located near the city limit of Elwood City.[24]
  • Al's Pet Shop: A pet shop that Arthur and his friends often walk past.
  • Care to Ware: Formerly named "Elwood City Clothing Exchange", Muffy helped redesign the store.[25] It donates all of its profits to charity.
  • Hover Park: An indoor skydiving-type simulation, where the visitor can emulate riding a hoverboard. It is only seen in Arthur's dream at the Elwood City Planetarium, therefore it is not known if it exists in the true future.[26]
  • Wonderworld: An amusement park. Notable rides include the Hurl-a-Whirl[27] and The Buzzard.[28]
  • Loring Cinema: A movie theater.


There are at least fifteen schools in Elwood City,[7] but only seven have been identified by name.

  • Lakewood Elementary School: The school that Arthur and his friends attend. The interior includes offices, classrooms, a cafeteria, gymnasium, and a detention room only seen in the early seasons. Outside of the school there is a playground with a jungle gym that is "claimed" by the Tough Customers. There is also a baseball field, where games such as Lakewood vs. Mighty Mountain and 3rd Graders vs. 4th Graders are held.
  • Mighty Mountain Elementary School the rivals to Lakewood. Several Tough Customers went here before transferring to Lakewood. The school building is seen in the episode "April 9th."
  • Glenbrook Academy a private school that Mr. Ratburn attended as a child. They went up against Lakewood in a medieval fair.[29]
  • Elwood City Preschool is a local preschool that D.W. attends with her friends. Her class is taught by Miss Morgan, the only known teacher. There is also a three-year-old class.[30]
  • Elwood City High School is a high school in Elwood City. Carl Manino and Thora Read attended it back in the 1950s. Although unconfirmed, it is possible this is the school Catherine Frensky attended for the majority of the series
  • PS 22 is a school in Elwood City that is mentioned in "Home Sweet Home" by both Irwin and Sanjeev. It is unknown where the school is as it is never seen or mentioned again.
  • Estabrook is an elementary school. Not much is known about it, as its only appearance was when its soccer team faced against Lakewood's in "The Big Blow-Up". In fact, its name is only mentioned at all in the novelization of the episode.



  • Reads' House: A yellow Cape Cod-esque house with a green roof and two dormers where Arthur and his family reside. He has his room to himself in the right dormer, but D.W. and Kate share a room in the left dormer. They also own a pet dog named Pal. Its address is 562 Main Street.
  • Mr. Ratburn's House: A yellow house with a green roof, a brown front door, a green garage door, and green window shutters. Arthur's third grade teacher, Mr. Ratburn, resides there independently, although it is rarely seen.
  • Molinas' House: A purple house located right next door to the Read's house. Vicita and her family reside there. They also own a pet dog named Amigo. It was formerly owned by Susy Sipple from the books and early seasons, until the Molina family from Ecuador acquired it shortly after Susy moved out.[32]
  • Dattilos' House: A white house with light blue accents and a yellow front door. A blind girl named Marina and her mother reside there, and it is close to her best friend Prunella's house.
  • Barneses' House: A yellow house with a blue roof where Binky and his parents, and the newly adopted Mei-Lin reside.
  • Deegans' House: A pinkish-orange house with a purple roof where Prunella, her sister Rubella, and their mother Wanda reside.
  • Armstrongs' House : A gray house with a front porch with a balcony above it, an orange roof, a yellow front door with orange accents, and a green garage door. Sue Ellen and her parents reside there, and were one of the most recent families that moved to Elwood City.
  • Walterses' House: A white house with blue accents and a gray roof where Fern and her parents reside.
  • Lundgrens' House: A white house with brown accents, a gray roof, and a front porch. This is the house where George and his family reside.
  • Tibbles' house: A large pink house with a dark red roof and a cupola. The twins Tommy and Timmy Tibble reside with their grandmother Mrs. Tibble there, and also own a pet black cat. It is a few blocks from the Reads' house.
  • Crosswires' Mansion: A lavender and yellow mansion with a bluish-green roof, brown front doors, and a balcony above the front doors. It has twenty rooms, a colossal yard, and a swimming pool. It is the largest residence in town. Muffy and her family reside there, although her family is very small and she has only one brother, Chip. Their chauffeur and butler, Bailey, also lives there.
  • Westboro Apartments: A campus of apartment complexes owned by landlord Mr. Sanders. Francine and her family reside in Apartment #3 in the red complex. Like D.W. and Kate, Francine and Catherine share a room too. They also own a pet cat named Nemo. Another resident named Mrs. Pariso lives in Apartment #4 right next to the Frenskys, after she moved there in Francine Goes to War.
  • Powers' House: A yellow house with a reddish-orange roof, two purple front doors, and a purple garage door where the Brain and his parents reside.
  • Elwood City Condominiums: A yellow condominium complex with a red roof, balconies, and porches. Buster and his mother Bitzi reside in one of the units, and Buster's Grandmother resides in another one.
  • Tree House: A private place inside a wooden structure built at the treetops above the tree trunk where Arthur and his friends hang out when doing homework, reading books, and spending time together; often done in peace and away from D.W. and her friends around her age. It is located next to the Mill Creek. The roof caved in from snow, but it was later fixed.[33]
  • MacDonalds' House: Where Molly and her family reside.
  • Morgans' House: Where Jenna and her parents live.
  • Compsons' House: A tan house where Ladonna and her family live in after moving from Louisiana.
  • Shady Pines Retirement Home: A senior living community, where Fritz Langley lives.
  • Elwood Arms: A hotel in Elwood City mentioned in Poor Muffy, The Crosswires refer it as a 'tacky place'.


  • It is nicknamed "City of the Strawberries"[34] and has an annual Strawberry Festival.[35] If Buster was talking about Elwood City in the opening of "Binky Rules," then Elwood City is known as "the City of the Strawberries", hence the annual Strawberry Festival.
  • In "Elwood City Turns 100!" the city celebrated its 100th anniversary, which is indirectly revealed to take place in 2003. However, this exact year could be disputed, as the show generally takes place in a modern-day setting. This particular episode was first aired in 2002.
  • Although Elwood City may very well be fictional, there is a city in real life called "Ellwood City" (with two Ls) also located in the state of Pennsylvania. The city also shares similar topography in their surrounding areas as well.
    • This is also the case with Crown City, and it's real life counterpart as well.
    • It is possible that the fictional city may be a parody of the real city.
    • Brown may have named the fictional city after the real city, having simply added minor changes to the spelling

Panoramic images[]


  1. "This is America, Arthur. Everybody's supposed to get an equal chance."D.W. Read to Arthur Read, "D.W. the Copycat" (1996)
  2. "I'm afraid Sue Ellen's going to have to take an extra American History class. She just hasn't spent enough time in this country."Nigel Ratburn, "Kids are from Earth, Parents are from Pluto" (2000)
  3. "Elwood City Turns 100!"
  4. "And so, from covered wagons to Cadillacs, the Crosswires have kept the transport industry alive and thriving in the United States for over 100 years."Wolf Blitzen, "Background Blues" (1998)
  5. "Elwood City: A Report"
  6. On This Spot
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 Elwood City Turns 100!
  8. Shelter from the Storm
  9. Arthur Goes to Camp
  10. The Blackout
  11. Ladonna Compson: Party Animal
  12. The Blizzard
  13. The Cherry Tree
  14. "Ask Arthur: What do you want to know about Arthur’s family? #ArthurWatchParty"
    "How old is their Grandma and where is Elwood city if its 5hrs from Ohio??"
    "Grandma Thora is in her 60s. And Elwood City is in Pennsylvania"
    @arthurpbs and @p3jamie, Twitter, April 29, 2020 (archived page)
  15. "#ArthurWatchParty 5 hour drive to Ohio from Elwood City.... where is Elwood City?!"
    "It's in Pennsylvania!"
    — @anatweetsnow and @arthurpbs, Twitter, April 29, 2020 (archived page)
  16. Arthur Read on Twitter: "@p3jamie Grandma Thora is in her 60s. And Elwood City is in Pennsylvania" / Twitter
  17. "An Arthur Thanksgiving"
  18. "Surprise!"
  19. "Flaw and Order"
  20. Francine's Bad Hair Day
  21. "Francine Redecorates"
  22. "Pick a Car, Any Car"
  23. "Sue Ellen Chickens Out"
  24. "Lost!"
  25. "Spoiled Rotten!"
  26. "D.W. and the Beastly Birthday"
  27. D.W.'s Imaginary Friend
  28. D.W. and Bud's Higher Purpose
  29. The Return of the King
  30. Blockheads
  31. Get Smart
  32. Arthur and Los Vecinos
  33. Castles in the Sky
  34. Buster calls it that in the beginning of "Binky Rules"
  35. "How the Cookie Crumbles"