Ephrata (ĕfˈrətə) [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.