The borough was originally named Queen City but later the community was named after George Talbot Olyphant, president of the Delaware and Hudson Canal Company.
Olyphant is a borough in Lackawanna County, Pennsylvania, approximately five miles (8km) northeast of Scranton on the Lackawanna River in the heart of the anthracite coal region of the State. Once engaged industriously in the shipping of coal as its main source of employment, Olyphant experienced a severe downturn in the twentieth century. Other industries of the past were the manufacturing of blasting powder, iron and steel goods, cigars, silks, etc. In 1900, the population stood at 6,180 people; in 1910, 8,305; in 1920 10,236; and in 1940, 9252. The population was 4,978 at the 2000 census.