FIRST SETTLEMENT IN GREENE COUNTY. - 259
(RETURN TO THE TITLE PAGE)
We are now brought down to the limits of our own county. The little settlements have been pushed forward, until our venturesome frontiersman has cleared his patch for corn, and built his lonely cabin, actually within the bounds of Greene County.
By common consent, it is admitted that John Wilson was the first white man to make a permanent home in what is now Sugar Creek Township, this county. On the 7th day of April, 1796, he erected a log cabin, moved into it, and began clearing out the forest around him. Tender associations cluster around this little cabin in the woods, as being the nucleus around which has gathered, in the course of four-score years, the stupendous growth and wealth that the county, in its present state of perfection, now presents.
In addition to the above, it is stated by John Mills, of Jamestown, that in April, 1796, his father, Jacob Mills, John Wilson, and his sons, Amos, Daniel, and George, came from Kentucky, and settled in the Northwest Territory. In its subsequent division into states and counties, the purchase of John Wilson was found to be in the southwest corner of Greene ; his sons, Amos and George, each purchased chased a quarter section adjoining him, in the same county, while the purchase of Daniel fell into Montgomery, and Mills' into Warren. Mr. Mills having been allowed the overplus in his survey, made his purchase two hundred acres, and also making the combined purchase of all one thousand acres in one body, at the junction of three counties.
Each one cleared a spot in the dense timber large enough to plant a little corn, a few beans, potatoes, etc., in the meantime erecting a small cabin on the lands of John Wilson, for the temporary accommodation of all. This cabin, it is believed, was the first permanent structure put up by a white man in what is now Greene County.
Not having been accompanied by their families, these hardy
260 - HISTORY OF GREENE COUNTY.
pioneers left their little patches of corn and beans, and their lonely cabin to stand guard in the wilds of nature, and returned to Kentucky for their wives and children, their furniture, and the appliances of civilization; while in their absence the tender blade of corn sprang up, and the vine threw out its tendrils, expanding, nursed by the genial rays of the sun, and guarded by the sturdy oak, fit emblem of the little settlement that in time was destined to expand into gigantic proportions of wealth and strength.
Procuring an ox team and wagon, all five families, with the household goods of each, were placed in it, and the journey to the wilderness, through the wilderness, was begun. The men, with their guns, usually walked, and, when necessary, put the shoulder to the wheel, to help the tired oxen, when the axle would disappear. At night a fire was built, the meal was prepared, and in the fragrant air "nature's sweet restorer" came unbidden. .Crossing the Ohio at Fort Washington (now Cincinnati), they followed the military road cut by General Wayne in 1793. On their arrival at the little cabin, their goods were put into it, and all five families occupied it until, by their joint efforts, other houses were erected on the purchase of each. This was called the Wilson settlement. Mr. Mills, having erected a cabin. this side of Lebanon, was the first pioneer in that part of Warren. Ichabod Corwin, father of the illustrious statesman, Tom Corwin, was one of their nearest neighbors.
The Wilsons and Millses, acting in conjunction, and being contemporaneous in settlement, we shall consider them as one family, or colony.
John Wilson was one of the framers of Ohio's first constitution, and, as such, deserves special mention. Advantageously located, they utilized the bounteous gifts with which nature had surrounded them, and the liberal reward which flowed from labor, still prompted their efforts to push forward. Not alone dependent upon the slow return of their planting, the forests afforded deer, bear, turkeys, pheasants, squirrels, and other game necessary to the pioneer table, and the oak and beech trees also afforded mash for the pioneer hog, so that with these natural auxiliaries, the table was not scantily supplied, but, with the corn-dodger, venison or bacon, beans, and milk, they had a repast, as Isaac Walton would say, "too good for anybody but honest men."
In the spring following, the little settlement received valuable accessions, by the addition of John Vance, father of Joseph C.
FIRST SETTLEMENTS. - 261
Vance, who settled on the present site of Bellbrook, shortly after followed by General Benjamin Whiteman, Colonel Maxfield, John Paul, and Owen Davis, who all located on Beaver Creek, the latter of whom built the first mill, in this county. It is said that this mill drew custom from a radius of thirty miles, and we know that the members of the "Dutch Station," in Miami County, brought their corn here, through the woods, camping out at night. Mr. Davis is spoken of by them as having been a genial, accommodating man, often remaining up all night to oblige them. It is given to us on pretty good authority, that this mill was not finished until 1798. Two block houses were built a little east of the mill, with the intention, should danger necessitate, to connect by a line of pickets, so as to include the mill. The way once opened, other settlers flocked in, and soon the sound of the ax was heard on the creek above the mill, and John Thomas, John Webb, and John Kizer might be seen, chopping, splitting, hewing, and erecting their cabin homes.
Mr. Davis often started his mill on the Sabbath, and ground corn for customers who had come a long distance. To this, some of his extremely religious neighbors protested, even threatening him with prosecution. Mr. Davis replied, that as soon as steps were taken in this direction, they would go without their meal and flour. This proved to be a too persuasive argument for them to stomach, at least. their stomachs protested, and the subject was dropped.
LETTER FROM SAMUEL FREEMAN.
" I will give a small account. of what I know of the first settling of Ohio, as a pioneer.
"My grandfather, Samuel Freeman, came from New Jersey to Cincinnati, in 1795, when my father, John Freeman, was about fourteen years old. There were then but three houses in the town, covered with shingles. It. was then called Fort Washington. I believe grandfather lived there about six years, during which General Wayne's army was stationed there. Samuel Freeman gave the first piece of ground in the town for burying the dead. I have heard my father say he could have bought the best lot in town, and paid for it in one week's catching fish with a hook and line, and selling them to the soldiers.
"In 1801, grandfather sold out in Cincinnati, and moved to Greene
262 - HISTORY OF GREENE COUNTY.
County, on Little Beaver, about seven or eight miles from Dayton, where he lived till 1806. In 1802, my father was married to Mary McKinney, and in 1803, August 29th, I was born, on the old farm on Beaver. In the fall of 1806, father and grandfather sold out, and we all moved to a section we had bought, between the present site of Tippecanoe and the Montgomery County line."
Thus, up to the year 1800, we have seen that the settlements were principally made by those already enumerated, in addition to which we may name, in summing up, in Beaver Creek, Gen. Ben. Whiteman, Owen Davis, Grover, Maxwell, Paul, Puterhaugh, McClain, Wolf, Nesbit, Fulk, Tatman, Shoup, Robinson, Marshall, Lamme, and Allison; and on Massie's Creek and the Little Miami, Thomas Townsley, James Galloway, Mitchell, Miller, McHatton, Hawn, Andrews, Quinn, Hopping, McCullough, and Stewarts, and Isaiah and William Sutton on Caesar's Creek.
We subjoin, with slight changes, a communication from Mr. Cooley to the " Torchlight : "
The first settler in the northern central part of the county of whom we have any record or well authenticated account was James Galloway, sen., who emigrated to this place from Bourbon County, Kentucky, early in the spring of 1798, now very nearly eighty-three years since. About twenty years previous, to-wit, November 23, 1778, he married Miss Rebecca Junkin, in Cumberland County, Pennsylvania. How long he sojourned in Kentucky we have not been able to determine. Mr. Galloway possessed many of the traits of Daniel Boone. He was in the service of the United States eighteen months, during the Revolutionary War, in the capacity of hunter, to procure game for the army. He was engaged in several conflicts with the Indians, and on one occasion, was brought face to face with Simon Girty, who, perceiving that Galloway was unarmed, accosted him thus : " Now Galloway, d-n you, I have got you," and instantly fired. Galloway received a dangerous wound, and was supposed by Girty to have been killed. He however wheeled his horse and made for camp, a mile distant, which he reached in safety, but in a fainting condition. The ball passed through his shoulder and lodged some place near the back of the neck. After carrying this bullet many years, it was extracted, some say by a cobbler, others by Dr. Joshua Martin. However this may have been, it was a source of considerable annoyance, and the wound was affected very much by the state of
EARLY SETTLEMENTS. - 263
the weather, and served as a barometer. On occasions, when something important was to be done, requiring fine weather, young Hugh would be dispatched to Mr. Galloway to learn the condition of the barometer.
Mr. Galloway's family on coming to this county, consisted of himself, wife, his sons, james, Samuel, William, Andrew, and one daughter, Rebecca. His family was afterward enlarged by a son and daughter, Anthony and Ann. James Galloway (blacksmith), and Adam McPherson, accompanied Mr. Galloway from Kentucky, and settled in different neighborhoods. The same year Thomas Townsley settled near the falls of Massie's Creek. These were the first settlers of this portion of Greene County, so far as we have been able to discover.
How Mr. Galloway succeeded in erecting his first cabin, we are left to conjecture, as his boys were mere children, the eldest being a lad of sixteen; but as necessity is the mother of invention, we can have no doubt, therefore, but. Mr. Galloway soon had a place of habitation for himself' and family. The matter of subsistance was a serious question for a, man of so large a family, as he would not be able to bring any considerable amount of provisions in his journey through an unbroken wilderness, and it must necessarily have been several months before he could derive any benefit from the fruits of the soil. Fortunately game was abundant, and Mr. Galloway, with his unerring musket was able to supply his family with all the delicacies of the season ; yet there was not the means for the enjoyment of that luxurious living of the present day.
In the year 1799, or 1800, George Galloway, Esq., located on the farm now owned by Andrew Holland, lying on the Yellow Springs pike, immediately north and west of the river. The tract. located by James Galloway, consisting of 161 acres, lay still farther north towards Yellow Springs. Subsequently Mr. Galloway sold to Rev. Robert Armstrong 301 acres ; which is now mainly comprised in the farms owned by James H. Dickey, John H. and Henry B. Jacoby. About. this time, or at all events prior to 1803, Matthew Quinn settled on the farm now occupied by Mr. Mathias Routzong. Others coming in from time to time, the country gradually became settled. Mills were a necessity. Owen Davis had built one on Beaver Creek, in 1798, which was patronized by the inhabitants for forty miles around, Whisky, though perhaps not so essential as bread, was nevertheless used to a considerable extent as a medi-
264 - HISTORY Of GREENE COUNTY.
tine, as well as a beverage. The country was new, chills and fever prevailed, and the system needed bracing. At all events, supply and demand, to a considerable extent, regulated trade. To supply this seeming necessity, Mr. Galloway erected a distillery on the small stream that crosses the Yellow Springs pike near the old stone house, previously described. What was its capacity we know not, but presume it was sufficient to meet the wants of the neighborhood and surrounding community. Although we have been assured that the early settlers in this community generally partook of their whisky in moderation, and never to excess, yet at this time, and for many years afterward, it was the custom on all occasions to pass around the bottle.
That there was at this period more of a community of interest and social equality among the people than at the present day, does not admit of a doubt. Log-rollings, raisings, wood-choppings, etc., brought the people frequently together from many miles around. There were no drones in the community, and on these occasions things went lively. At a raising, the hands would divide, putting their best men on the corners to do the notching, and then a strife arose as to who would be first to get their log in place. And thus they would continue till the square part of the building was completed; and then beveled logs thrown up at the ends, and poles thrown across lengthwise, at intervals of from three to four feet, completed the log part of the structure. For a covering, clapboards, of an inch in thickness and about six in breadth, and in length corresponding with the distances between the poles, were placed up and down in such a manner as to make a close roof. The weight poles are then placed in position, and the roof is complete.
About the beginning of the century, Mr. Solomon McCully settled on the north of the river, on the Fairfield pike, at present occupied by Owen Swadner. Further on, Arthur Forbes, on the farm occupied by Robert A. Mitchell; John, James, and David Anderson, on what used to be called the Kershner farm, situated on the Yellow Springs and Dayton pike ; Ezekiel Hopping, on the tract now owned by William Confer and George Taylor,. still further north. We can not give the exact dates of the settlement of these parties, but they were at an early day. James Andrew settled on the farm immediately west of Mr. Armstrong, and now occupied by W. Cooley. His oldest daughter, Nancy, was the wife of Mr.
EARLY SETTLEMENTS. - 265
Armstrong, his family consisting of Jane, William, James, Rebecca, John, Hugh, George, Ebinger, and Elizabeth. Mr. Andrew was a handicraftsman, as well as farmer. He made spinning-wheels, little and big. He also stocked plows with wooden mold-boards. If we go back to the days of our grandmothers, we shall find abundant material for reflection. Every article of clothing for the body or the house was made at home. Toil, toil, incessant toil, from one year's end to another, to procure the simplest comforts of life. Now, we get a hat or a coat, and don't know how it was made, or whence it came. We have time to read, to think, to meditate how to make life enjoyable. Let us be thankful; and when disposed to murmur at our hard lot, think of our grandfathers and grandmothers.
In 1802 or 1803, Mr. James Galloway, sen., and James Galloway, jr., started to Louisville, to see Colonel Anderson in regard to the appointment of surveyor, and on their way, stopped several days with Samuel Galloway, then living on McConnell's Run, in Kentucky, where Robert Armstrong preached. While there they became acquainted with him, and joined in communion of the Lord's Supper; after which, resuming their journey, they reached Louisville, and through the influence of his father and his uncle George Pomeroy, James Galloway, jr., received the appointment. On their :return, they again tarried with Samuel Galloway, and meeting Mr. Armstrong, they urgently invited him to come to Ohio and preach ; to which he agreed, on condition that it was the desire of the people there. When they reached home, they consulted the people, and the desire being unanimous, James Galloway, jr., was sent to Kentucky to bring him here. Writing to his brother George, to meet him in Dayton, and pilot him to the settlements, he started in company with Mr. A., and traveling along the road cut by General Wayne from Cincinnati, arrived here in safety, and soon began his labors : preaching at the house of James Galloway, sen., to the following families : Matthew Quinn, Alexander Forbes, William Jenkins, Bromagen, Widow Criswell (who united with his church in Kentucky, and came to Ohio in 1801), Alexander McCoy and us, John and James Stephenson, Thomas and John Townsley, George and James Galloway, and perhaps a few others. He also Preached at Sugar Creek, at the house of James Clemsey, on the resent site of Bellbrook. Among his congregation were John and Joseph McKnight, Joseph C. Vance (father of Governor Vance)
266 - HISTORY OF GREENE COUNTY.
and his brother, Captain Lamb, William Tanner, the two Snodgrasses, two Snowdens, Van Eaton, and several others. A few of these were members of the Associate Reformed and Presbyterian churches, but all were glad to listen to Mr. Armstrong. During his stay here, he was urgently solicited to remain as permanent pastor. This he neither agreed nor refused to do ; but stated that he was dissatisfied with Kentucky, on account of slavery. He also stated, that if he could persuade his congregation to emigrate with him, he would come, provided he received a call. A petition was straightway presented to the associate presbytery of Kentucky, by James Galloway, jr., which was granted, and Rev. Andrew Fulton was appointed moderator in the call. Shortly after his appointment he preached in James Galloway's barn, and baptized his son Anthony, and daughter Ann, the first baptism by this church in the county; date, September 1, 1804.
In August, 1803, Colonel James Morrow, with quite a number of others, members of Mr. Armstrong's congregation in Kentucky, came to this county to locate land. They made their camp, and passed the Sabbath, near a spring on the edge of the prairie at Old- . town. There seems to have been a mutual feeling of discontent on the part of Mr. Armstrong and his people, in reference to the workings of the slave system. The encroachments and domineering spirit of slavery and slaveholders, were. already being felt. Ohio, the first-born of the ordinance of 1787, was a free state. The movement of the people here, seconded by the people there, mutually contributed to the accomplishment of the same end. Colonel Morrow and his associates succeeded in locating lands in the fertile regions of Massie's Creek and Sugar Creek, and, with others, moved to them in the spring of 1804. The call for Mr. Armstrong was made in due form, and John McKnight, of Sugar Creek, and James Galloway, sen., were appointed commissioners by the congregation to lay it before the presbytery of Kentucky, and urge its acceptance. The call was presented and accepted, and Mr. A. immediately set about making preparations for his new field of labor. He had been married two years previously, to Miss Nancy Andrew. He and his wife set out on horseback to visit her father's people, who lived near Nashville, Tennessee. In October, they again started for their old home in Kentucky, and their new one in Ohio. It was arranged to take Mrs. Armstrong's brother, Hugh, with them, then a lad of some ten years of age. A small saddle was made, and placed on
EARLY SETTLEMENTS. - 267
the horse, behind Mr. A., on which young Hugh rode to Kentucky. On their arrival at Mr. A's home in Kentucky, they were met by William Gowdy, who lived near Alpha, who had been delegated, with a four-horse team, to bring Mr. A's household goods, books, etc. Mr. Armstrong and his wife made the journey on horseback, while young Hugh was assigned to the wagon, with Gowdy. We may as well state, right here, that the young Hugh spoken of, is the same Hugh Andrew we have with us, and who is, perhaps, with a single exception, the oldest citizen of the county, and to whom we are indebted for information that otherwise would be inaccessible. Mr. Armstrong and wife reached their destination several days in advance of the wagon. They stopped at Mr. James Galloway, Ben's, and were his guests through the winter. On the arrival of the wagon, young Hugh, not exactly liking the looks of things, asked, and obtained, leave to return with Mr. Gowdy to his residence. Mr. Gowdy was a young married man at this time, while his father's family lived near. In his father's family were two daughters, Nancy and Ann. To the latter, a young man by the name of .Tames Bull had been, for some time, paying his respects, and the happy couple were about to unite their destinies in the bonds of matrimony. Great preparations were made for the important event. Says Mr. Andrew, everybody was there, from Dan to Beersheba, and he supposes there were at least one hundred guests. Mr. Armstrong performed the ceremony, which is supposed to have been the first marriage in the county. As the result of this marriage, we have Mr. William and John Bull; Mrs. Susanna, wife of Mr. James Turnbull; Mrs. Margaret, wife of James Hopping, Esq.; James Law, Robert Scott, Amos and Rankin Bull. The oldest is above seventy-two years of age, while the youngest is fifty-two. Rev. James Law Bull is a United Presbyterian minister in the West. The rest, except John, are,, and always have been, citizens of the county. All, early in life, made a public profession of religion, and united with the Associate Presbyterian congregation of Massie's Creek, and all are now members of the United Presbyterian Church, except John, who passed from earth in the year 1834.
Mr. Bull was a quiet and good citizen, a member of the Presbyterian Church, and in the van-guard of reform in his day and generation. As early as 1820, he resolved to discontinue the use of whisky in his harvest field. In this, he was joined by his neighbor,
268 - HISTORY OF GREENE COUNTY.
George Townsley, Esq. This put them to some inconvenience, as men would come and go again, as soon as they found they were not to get any whisky. Harvesting in that day was a slow process, as the grain was all cut with a hand sickle. One half acre, reaped and bound, was a day's work, though some experts put up an acre. Afterward, cradles came into use, and now everybody knows how grain is cut. Mr. Bull was born in 1776, and died in 1872, lacking only four years of being a centenarian. His wife died in 1836.
In the. spring of 1805, Mr. Armstrong, having completed his log cabin, with stone chimney, on the tract of land purchased of Mr. Galloway (as before stated), located in his new home. His duties were manifold and arduous. In addition to his regular labors as pastor of a congregation, in preparing two sermons for each Sabbath, necessarily much time would have to be devoted to secular matters. A new farm was to be opened up and improved; family visitation and catechistical instructions must not be neglected; meetings of presbytery and synod must be attended, although often several hundred miles away-long and tedious journeys to be made on horseback. All this would seem to require a pretty active life. With all his manifold labors, we have never heard that there was any complaint of dereliction in duty, but, on the contrary, that his sermons were well prepared and forcibly delivered ; and that his congregations, possessing more than ordinary intelligence, were edified and instructed. Mr. Armstrong had two places of preaching, one on Massie's Creek and the other on Caesar's Creek. Massie's Creek, the nearest place of preaching, was some three or four miles from his residence, which he usually walked. But as the river was between his home and place of preaching, high water sometimes presented an obstacle not so easily overcome. But in this, as in other matters, he was enabled to devise an expedient which answered every purpose, except in extremely high water. He had a pair of stilts, on which he used to cross, it is said, with great circumspection. His other place of preaching was some twelve miles distant. Mr. Armstrong being a man of slight build and delicate structure, it is a marvel that he was enabled to perform the amount of labor that he did. As time passed, his worldly circumstances improved. His farm was being opened up. Stock was accumulating around him. In his inexperience in farming operations, he frequently found the knowledge and services of his old friend and patron, James Galloway, sen., of great value. As they
EARLY SETTLEMENTS. - 269
were neighbors, Mr. Galloway was frequently consulted. On one occasion he had a horse bitten by a rattlesnake, which Mr. Galloway readily cured by the application of a weed that is said to exist where snakes abound.
In the year 1805, another of those grand weddings occurred, at the house of Squire George Galloway. The parties were James Stevenson and Anna Galloway, half-sister to the squire. The guests were numerous; so much so that accommodations could not be found within, and a large log heap was built without. Mr. Stevenson was the party who donated the ground for the church and cemetery. He, with his brother John, had settled in the Stevenson neighborhood as early as the year 1797, the year preceding the settlement of the Galloways.
January 6, 1806, James Galloway, jr., or Major Galloway, as you please, and Martha Townsley were married by Rev. Armstrong. In the year 1809 the major built a fine brick residence a short distance west of the Fairfield pike, on the farm at present owned by Mr. Joseph Collins. Many will no doubt remember seeing this brick building standing out in the field as they passed along the pike. In the following year James Galloway, sen., built the stone house (which is still standing) on the Yellow Springs pike, but its uses perverted to that of a stable. In the chimney of this building there was a date-stone marked 1810. This stone has been removed, and inserted in the rear end of the Galloway building in Xenia, in their late improvement. On the 27th of June, 1812, a terrible tornado passed over this section of country, extending several miles in length, and about half a mile in width, leaving scarcely a tree or shrub in its track. A portion of the major's brick mansion was blown down and the balance of the building left in a very unsafe condition, till rebuilt and repaired. In 1813, probably, George Galloway (usually designated Pennsylvania George) and Rebecca Galloway, oldest daughter of James Galloway, sen., were married. Miss Galloway had had a former suiter, which she had rejected, who was no less a personage than the distinguished
Himself. He had been a frequent visitor in the family, and took a wonderful liking to the white girl; and, according to the Indian custom, made his advances to the father, who referred the case to
270 - HISTORY OF GREENE COUNTY.
the daughter. The undaunted chief appeals to the girl herself, offering her fifty broaches of silver. She told him she didn't want to be a wild woman, and work like the Indian women. He told her she need not work. Notwithstanding the rejection of his suit, he ever after remained friendly with the family, though he was sometimes found to be rather a tough customer. On one occasion when at the shop of blacksmith James Galloway, and being under the influence of whisky, he proved to be rather annoying, when Galloway took him, much to the disgust of the chieftain, and tied him to a tree till he got more sober and quiet. In the year 1814, Rev. Armstrong sold his first purchase to Mr. Samuel Goe, and bought lands on the other side of the river, in order to avoid the difficulties so often experienced by high waters. About the same time a new congregation was organized in Xenia, and Mr. Armstrong having been released from the Sugar Creek branch of his congregation, the two united in a call for the Rev. Francis Pringle, jr., who was settled in the united charge of Xenia and Sugar Creek. This left Mr. Armstrong in charge of the Massie's Creek congregation alone, and perhaps no pastor in the entire county has, at any time, presided over a more intelligent congregation in the history of the county. Several of its members were at different times called to fill important positions of honor and public trust. Colonel James Morrow served several years as county commissioner, and as member of the lower house of the legislature. Esquire Joseph Kyle also served several terms in the legislature. Judge Samuel Kyle was an associate judge for thirty-five consecutive years. Robert Moody, whose cool and clear judgment was surpassed by few; David Jackson was a man of intellectual power; Thomas Raugh had a clear and penetrating mind ; as well as the McCoys, Laugheads, McHattons, Andersons, Greggs, Browns, Bradfutes, Collins, Kings, Turnbulls, Deans, Gibsons, Andrews, Junkins, Bulls, Galloways, and Struthers.
Mr. Andrews, of whom we formerly spoke, for years continued his occupation of wheelwright and stocking plows. Mr. George Junkins had established a blacksmith shop near the Fairfield pike, south of R. A. Mitchell's present residence. A culprit had stolen a, set of plow irons of John Ellis, (grandfather of Samuel Ellis, who lives near the railroad crossing on the Clifton Pike,) and taken them to Junkins' shop to be relaid. The irons were taken thence to Mr. Addrews to be stocked with wooden mold-boards, etc.
EARLY SETTLEMENTS. - 271
The irons were stamped, and it was the design of the thief to have the marks obliterated in order to avoid detection ; but in this he failed, which led to his arrest and punishment. At this time there was a sugar tree on the public square, Xenia, which served as a whipping-post. His sentence was to receive eight lashes on his bare back. This occurred on the 8th of October, 1808, and is said to have been the last public whipping for crime in Greene County.
The lands west of the Little Miami River were congress lands, and were disposed of very differently from those on the other side of the river. In the following manner, to-wit : " James Madison, President of the United States of America. To all to whom these presents shall come, greeting : Know ye, that James Andrew, of Greene County, having deposited in the Treasury a certificate of the Register of the Land Office, at Cincinnati, whereby it appears that he has made full payment for the northeast quarter of section thirty-five, of township number four, in range number seven, of the land lying between the Great Miami River and the Virginia Reservation, etc., etc. Dated, Washington, February 12th, 1810. Signed by James Madison, President of the United States, and R, Smith, Secretary of State." A similar patent was issued for the southeast quarter of section thirty-six, to the same, in the year 1816. They were printed and written on parchment,. and are antique in appearance.
Mr. Andrew, having served his generation, fell asleep in the year 1822, aged 72 years. Of his ten children, but two remain, Mr. Hugh Andrew, of Xenia, and Ebenezer Andrew, of Sugar Creek Township. James, Hugh, and George carried on farming operations quite successfully for many years on the old homestead and lands adjoining, each owning fine farms of two or three hundred acres. Two of James' sons, William and Harvey, are in the ministry in the United Presbyterian Church; H. M., living in Xenia, and Samuel, George's son, near Frost's Station. Others are scattered through the West, with not a single one living within five miles of the old homestead. Such radical changes does time make, that the place that knows us now will soon know us no more forever.
THE OLD CABIN AND PIONEER CHURCH.
The main portion of the house occupied by Mr. Andrew Holland, with two enormous stone chimneys, was built in the year 1800
272 - HISTORY OF GREENE COUNTY.
by George Galloway,, Esq. It is built with logs and weather-boarded. In this, Mr. Armstrong ministered through the winter of 1804 and 1805.
Subsequently, « a church was built on a lot of three acres donated by Mr. James Stevenson for church and cemetery purposes. The building was thirty feet square, and built of peeled hickory logs, and had neither loft, nor floor, save mother earth. In it were neither stoves nor chimneys. There was but one door, and it was in the center of one end of the house. From the door there was an aisle that run to the foundation of the pulpit, in the center of the other end of the house. The pulpit was constructed of clapboards, on a wooden foundation, and on each side was a window of twelve 8x10 lights. It was seated with two rows of puncheons from twelve to fifteen inches broad and twelve feet long, split out from poplar near by, and from four to six inches thick, hewed on the upper side and dressed with a jack-plane. In each end and center there were uprights some three feet long, mortised in, and on these uprights two or three slats were pinned, which formed quite a comfortable back. These seats had four substantial legs, like a stool, one end standing against the wall, the other extending to the aisle. This edifice was on the north bank of Massie's Creek, about four miles from where it empties into the Little Miami River. Men and women would walk or ride on horseback from two to twelve miles, and sometimes fifteen miles, to this house, and sit without fire in the coldest weather and hear two sermons."
The above quotation is substantially as we find it in a communication referred to before, and published by Andrew Galloway, Esq., in the Xenia News, in the year 1859. Thus these good old seceders continued to worship till about the year 1812 or 1813, when they built a larger, nobler, and more comfortable house of hewed logs, a short distance from the first. In the building of this house, the labor was divided up among the members of the congregation. Mr. Armstrong was to furnish a gallon of whisky, and Squire George Galloway was to haul the logs, which had to be done with oxen. For some reason the squire couldn't manage the oxen very well, and employed a wicked gentile to take his place, who attributed the squire's want of success to the fact that he didn't swear. However this may have been in regard to the driving of oxen, profane swearing being a violation of law-human and divine-the squire, from a double sense of duty, faithfully inflicted
EARLY SETTLEMENTS. - 273
its penalties on its perpetrators. On one occasion a violator of this law was fined fifty cents, and gave a dollar in payment of his fine; but the squire being unable to make change, the perpetrator let off another oath. "There," said the squire, "that makes the change."
Through the above contributions we have been enabled to give the names of many settlers from 1800 to 1805. We shall start from this period with the name of John Todd, who emigrated from Virginia in 1780, first to Nashville, Tennessee, then from Nashville to Xenia in 1805 ; followed in September, 1806, by his son-in-law, Henry Phillips, wife, and Rebecca, daughter of Mr. Todd. Mr. Todd and family lived in a hewed log house, on Main Street, a little east of the old Towler cabin, in which Phillips, and others succeeding him, kept a tavern as late as 1820. In June, 1807, Dr. Andrew W. Davisson and Rebecca Todd were married by William McFarland, justice of the peace. Dr. Davisson was the first physician in Xenia. He also built the first brick house in Xenia, in 1811, on Main Street, near the site of B. Knox's saddler shop ; and in 1814 the first stone house was built by him on Main Street. Doctor and Mrs. Davisson were members of the old seceder congregation under Francis Pringle in 1811. She died in Chicago, in 1870, at the age of eighty.
The "union neighborhood" was a settlement of Methodists, with the Bower family, who came in 1803, as a neuclus. They were joined by James Butler, Thomas Perkins, and Gray Gary, in 180.1. In 1805, Tinsley Heath, J. and I. Lloyd, and mother, John Fires, Isaac Maitland, and John Lewis, were added to their numbers. The year 1806 witnessed the arrival of Bennet Maxey, and Horatio Maxey. In 1807, Peter Pelham came here, at which time it received the name of Union. After this, in 1808, it was increased by Philip Davis, Theodoric Spain, and Alexander Stowel, most of whom had families, and nearly all members of the Methodist Church.
From this period the population of the county, both from internal growth and the increasing flow of immigration, increased so rapidly, that we shall cease the specific enumeration of individuals, and expand into broad generalities. We shall, however, subjoin a partial list of some of the early settlers of Xenia, which will be followed by three or four reminiscences, which will carry us to a period within the- memory of those now living.
Among the earliest settlers of Xenia were John Marshall, John
274 - HISTORY OF GREENE COUNTY.
Paul, Josiah Grover, James Collier, Henry Barnes (carpenter), William A. Beatty (tavern keeper), John Alexander (lawyer), James Towler, John Stull (tailor), Benjamin Grover (school-teacher), John Williams (blacksmith), John Milton (wheelwright), Mr. Porter, Captain Steels (tanner), Mr. Wallace (tanner), Jonathan Wallace (hatter), Dr. Davidson, James Gowdy (merchant), Robert Gowdy (tanner), Samuel Gowdy, William Elsbury (lawyer), John Davis (merchant), James Galloway (surveyor), John Hivling (merchant), Abraham Lawrence (carpenter), Bunton (joiner), most of whom were young married men, just beginning in the world.