200 - HISTORY OF SUSQUEHANNA COUNTY.
and one years old, and his wife ninety-seven. Both died in Gibson. Their sons were, Collins, Jonathan, George, Richard, and Robert. Richard Gelatt, second, is a son of George Gelatt, Jr..
Benjamin Tingley resided half a mile from Sweet's, on the Jackson road ; his brother Daniel a mile further north, and in Jackson.
In 1811, Merritt Hine settled in Gibson, and removed to Wayne County in 1844.
Nathan Guild, George Williams (from Herrick, where he settled in 1808), Ezekiel and Amos Barnes—who married daughters of John Belcher; Nathaniel Claflin, Nathan Daniels, and Capt. Oliver Payne, were all here as early as 1812. Payne's Lake takes its name from the location of the last named.
Nathan Claflin located near the mills known by his name. His sons were Watson, and Hermon, deceased ; Naaman F., now owning the farm, and John H., who owns the mills. He died in 1837, much esteemed.
Many will remember Rev. Joshua Baker as an old and respected inhabitant. He died recently. Nehemiah Barnes, father of E. and A. Barnes, was a Revolutionary soldier. He died in Gibson in 1839, aged seventy-eight.
John Denny came to the township from Dutchess County, New York, February, 1814; Moses Chamberlin, 1st, a brother of Wright Chamberlin, Sr., March, 1814 ; Amos Ingalls, a brother-in-law of M. Chamberlin, and father of Rev. R. Ingalls, September, 1815; and, within the first three years after 1812, Samuel Resseguie, William Holmes, Edward Weymar, John Brundage, Sterling Bell, William Mitchell, Silas Steenback, Noah Tiffany, John Safford, and Otis Stearns.
In the mean time Gibson had been separated from Clifford, but then included twice its present territory. Waller Washburn was appointed constable by the court, November, 1813, but John Potter was the first elected; John Tyler (then residing in that part of the original Gibson which is now Ararat), and James Chandler, supervisors; Elias Bell, and N. Maxon, postmasters. Joseph Potter, Joseph Washburn, and D. Taylor, were then the largest resident tax-payers within the present limits of the town.
Moses Chamberlin, 1st, was a native of Litchfield County, Connecticut. When a soldier of the Revolutionary army in 1776, he kept a diary which was published in one of the Montrose papers in 1837, and which is worthy of re-publication. After the war he went to Vermont, married and remained there until he came to this county, with the exception of a year when he lived in Constable, Franklin County, New York. This was
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during the war of 1812-15, and as that township was next to the Canada line, he was driven away. On coming here, he located where his son, S. S. Chamberlin, now lives. Another son, the Rev. William C., became a missionary to the Creek Indians in Georgia. The father had been'a justice of the peace, and was usually called Esquire Chamberlin. Each of the senior brothers, Moses and Wright, had a son Moses.
Deacon Otis Stearns was a son of Joseph, who came to Harford in 1792, but located in Mount Pleasant a year or two later. While there he had to come nine miles to Captain Potter's to get his axes sharpened. When Deacon Stearns 'settled in Gibson, he bought 240 acres of Joseph Potter, and remained on that place three years keeping tavern, when he removed to the farm where he spent the rest of his life, near the lake that bears his name. Here he built a grist-mill in 1819. He died in 1858. His widow, a daughter of Captain Potter, died in Gibson eleven years later, in her eighty-second year. " She was born in Saratoga County, New York; came with her father to Susquehanna County in 1792; was fifty years a member of the Baptist church, and lived and died a Christian."
John Denny and John Safford bought of George Gelatt, Jr., lands and improvements near Smiley. Two years afterwards, the former was an innkeeper, and Mr. Safford had two mills at Smiley, which were burned in 1822.
In 1816, a Mr. Mory (or Mowry) kept a store six months at Claflin's mills—the first merchant of the township.
In 1817, James and William Noble kept one the same length of time in Burrows' Hollow. They afterwards established a store in Brooklyn.
About this time or a little prior to it, Fitch Resseguie, a son of Samuel, and then only a lad of eight or ten years, was lost in the Elkwoods, and lay out all night, or rather perched in a tree-top, while the wolves howled around until the break of day.
About 1816, David Taylor sold his tavern to Asahel Norton. It was afterwards kept in succession by N. Webber, Charles Forbes, Lewis Baker, Aaron Green, Joel Steenbeck, Samuel Holmes, etc. The pace was well known to travelers on the Newburg turnpike in its palmiest days.
Willard Gillett was here in 1817 and possibly earlier. He was a brother-in-law of William Abel. His sons were, Roswell (who died years ago, leaving a family), Jacob L., and Justin W. The latter two live in Gibson.
John Gillett, an older brother of Willard's, came much later than he. This family have loft the county, with the exception of a daughter in Dundaff.
In 1817, Charles Case was located on the farm until recently
202 - HISTORY OF SUSQUEHANNA COUNTY.
occupied by his son, William T. Case, Esq. Another son, Horace, lives in Jackson, and a third, Treadwell, in Wayne County.
Silas Torrey was near Kentuck ; Eben Witter (afterwards town clerk), and Enos Whitney, Sen., near Gelatt Hollow. The latter died October, 1R46, aged eighty-four. His sons were Thaddeus, Belius, Enos, and Everett.
David Tarbox was a saddler at Gibson Hollow in 1818, and succeeded Dr. Chandler as postmaster in 1825.
George Conrad, son of William Conrad, or Coonrod, who came to Brooklyn in 1787, settled in South Gibson in 1818.
Elections for Gibson and Jackson—both then in their original extent—were held at the house of James Bennett.
Long prior to this the sons of the pioneers began to figure on the tax-lists. Corbet Pickering, now of South Gibson, came of age in 1818, and lived at Gelatt Hollow, where he then married a daughter of Dr. Denny. This now aged couple recently celebrated their golden wedding, and from Mr. P.'s published account of it is copied a part of his statements respecting his family :—
" We have raised up a large family of children, eleven of whom are now living, and four have gone to the better land. Our grandchildren now number fifty-two, our great-grandchildren nine, and peace seems to reign on every hand. Ours was no ordinary pleasure on the 17th September, 1868, when, sitting at the table spread with the good things of life, in company with most of our children, and many of our neighbors, numbering in all above one hundred."
Parley Potter kept tavern with his father at the old homestead in 1819.
John Seymour bought of Joseph Washburn and William Holmes, and kept store on the corner now occupied by N. E. Kennedy. He left the place six years later. Ebenezer Blanchard was at Gelatt Hollow.
April, 1819, Urbane Burrows came to the locality which has long been known by his name, and engaged in the mercantile business, which he successfully prosecuted for thirty-six years. From 1856 to 1864 he was associate judge of the Susquehanna County courts. His latest enterprise, noticed on a later page, is a fitting exponent of his character.
Artemas Woodward settled in Gibson the same year with the above, and his son George came the following year.
In 1822 Tyler (Joab), Seymour & Co. had a tin and sheet iron factory on Gibson Hill. A year or two later, William A. Boyd came to the place, and after the removal of John Seymour was of the firm of Tyler, Boyd & Co., merchants.
As early as 1824 Goodrich Elton carried on the business of
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wool-carding and cloth-dressing at Smiley, and remained here until his death in 1865.
In 1825 the name of Sabinas Walker, the father of Gov. G. C. Walker, first appeared on the tax-list of Gibson. His brothers, Enos (NOTE: died March 29, 1856. Buried in the middle of field so. of Smiley), Keith, Arnold, and Marshall were also here.
At this time the oil-stone quarry in the eastern part of the township, was owned by Kenneth Fitch, a resident of New York, who employed men to work it, kept a small stock of goods at Forbes's hotel, and came here occasionally to look at the business, which was usually left to the management of his agent, Henry K. Niven, from Newburg, N. Y. The latter married Jane (afterwards Mrs. Lusk), daughter of M. Du Bois, Esq., died early, and is buried at Great Bend, where their daughter, Mrs. Dr. Patrick, now resides. The quarry was worked but a year or two, the stone proving too soft.
In 1826 Roswell Barnes bought a saw-mill of Robert Gelatt, and located in the extreme northeast corner of Gibson.
John Collar sold the old place on the Tunkhannock Creek to Peter Rynearson. Horace Thayer erected a house and kept a store on Gibson Hill.
About 1827 Tyler, Boyd & Co. sold their store to P. K. Williams, and a year or two later, a house and lot to Dr. Chester Tyler (see Physicians).
In 1830 Charles Chandler 2d was appointed justice of the peace in Gibson.
In 1831 Mr. Thayer leased his store to Burrows & Kennedy; F. A. Burrows (see Springville), brother of Judge Burrows; and N. E. Kennedy, who had been clerk for the latter three years.
In 1835 N. E. Kennedy bought out P. K. Williams, and has continued the mercantile business here to the present time. The hill which takes its name from his location is often pronounced Canada Hill ; it is the one previously called Gibson Hill.
Mr. Williams became a Presbyterian minister, and was settled for a time in Onondaga County, N. Y. He afterwards returned to this county and entered into business, and is now a merchant at Nicholson.
John Smiley came to Gibson in 1835, and the next year be and Gaylord Curtis (now of Susquehanna Depot) had a store, where the former continued to do business thirty-five years.
J. and J. T. Peck had a provision store at this point, now called Smiley.
Silas Steenbeck was the owner of a grist-mill here for many years.
In 1836 William H. Pope came to Gelatt Hollow and began the woolen factory still in operation there, though a branch of the business is carried on at Smiley in the building once occupied by Goodrich Elton.
204 - HISTORY OF SUSQUEHANNA COUNTY.
Lawrence Manzer bought of P. Rynearson the old Collar farm.
William Purdy kept a hotel on the hill, the house and lands of Horace Thayer being transferred to him. Aaron Green kept the one at Smiley.
In 1837 the Lenox and Harmony turnpike from Smiley to Lanesboro, was constructed.
In 1739 a division of the county was agitated, and it was proposed to take out Gibson with Clifford and adjoining townships, to form a new county with parts of Luzerne, and to make Dundaff the county seat. Happily for Susquehanna this and similar projects have fallen through.
About this time the Welsh began to extend their settlement into Gibson from the base and vicinity of Elk Hill, where they had been located several years. John Owen was one of the earliest in Gibson, and his sons are here now. He came from North Wales. There are about twenty-four families of the Welsh settlement now in Gibson, and they are among its most respected and well-to-do citizens. " It is their characteristic arid habitual endeavor to establish the sanctuary and its ordinances wherever they establish themselves." The cultivation of their natural love of music has afforded them and the community rich treats of enjoyment.
Early in 1867 George H. Wells, late representative from Susquehanna County, prepared a table of the aged of Gibson, the youngest of whom was 70 and the oldest (William Abel) was 91. There were in all thirty-eight persons—nineteen men and nineteen women. The average age of the men was 78½ and of the women 75½ years. The list included. seven married couples, all married over half a century, the average time being 56 years. Seven of the men and three of the women were over 80; twenty-four in the list were over 75. Half of the whole number were born in Connecticut and six were born in Wales. The table did not contain a native-born Pennsylvanian. All the men were farmers, and all the women but two were then, or had been, farmers' wives. Only one of the whole list had never married. The one who had resided longest in the township (74 years), as well as longest in the county, was Mrs. Lois Stearns, widow of Deacon Otis Stearns. Her death has already been mentioned; many others on the same list are now gone. "Four aged ladies were buried in the course of one week in Gibson, in January, 1869, the sum of their ages being 312 years."
The table gave convincing proof of the healthfulness of Gibson.
Mr. Wells adds :—
" Persons from a less salubrious climate will be surprised to find here men and women near seventy years of age who appear to be in the prime of life, "
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and some of the men in the above list over eighty are no easy competitors in the harvest and hay field.
" The most of these were pioneers of a portion of Susquehanna County; and as our forefathers fought to establish the principles of liberty and free government, so these have braved the hardships of frontier life, and fought the rugged wilderness to give strength and material prosperity to our beloved country. They have also made happy homes for their descendants."
Dr. Robert Chandler was probably the first postmaster in Gibson.
In the spring of 1832 " Kentuckyville" post-dffice was established, Stephen P. Chandler, P.M. It has long been discontinued.
There are now three post-offices in the township : Gibson, Smiley, and South Gibson.
The Gibson post-office, with a daily mail, is at Burrows' Hollow; the morning mails from New York and Philadelphia are now due at 5 o'clock P. M. This is the largest of the villages its has thirty-three dwellings, two churches, two stores, a tannery, two carriage factories, two blacksmith shops, two harness shops, a shoe shop, a tin and sheet-iron shop, a cabinet and joiner shop, a grist-mill, and two saw-mills. Population, 155.
A newspaper correspondent in 1869, speaks of South Gibson
“An unpretending little town, situated on the Tunkhannock, about midway between Susquehanna Depot and Nicholson. It contains,about thirty dwelling houses, .a hotel, a grist-mill, three stores, a tailor shop, a blacksmith shop, a doctor's office, a justice's office, a school-house, and last, but not least, a new Methodist church.
" This village is nearly surrounded by hills, which shut out the wind, making it very warm ; besides, the days are somewhat shortened, as the sun does not rise here till late and retires behind the hills at an early hour, but on these hill-sides the first green grass is seen in early spring, and here the first berries ripen in summer.
" This town has enjoyed a large trade for the past five years, people coming from many miles around to do their trading. The surrounding country is settled by well-to-do farmers, who possess beautiful farms and fine buildings. Dairying is carried on to a considerable extent, every farm having some cows, and many from twenty to twenty-five. This place sustains a Good Templars' Lodge, which represents almost every family in the vicinity. Not one-tenth as much liquor is now sold in the place as before the Lodge was organized."
In 1871 a uniformed militia company was organized, James M. Craft commanding officer.
There are seven stores in the township; one at Smiley, and Kennedy's, in addition to those mentioned.
In 1807 there was but one school-house in Gibson, and that was roofed with bark. It stood on Union Hill, about forty rods
206 - HISTORY OF SUSQUEHANNA COUNTY.
from James Bennett's house. Miss Molly Post taught the school, and Charles Bennett, now of South Gibson, was one of her pupils. Lyman Richardson, since a faithful pastor, and the honored head of the University at Harford, taught a school in `Capt. Potter's house during the winter of 1808 and 1809. A Mr. Follett is mentioned as a teacher prior to 1810, and, it is possible, prior to Miss Post.
District schools were gradually increased ; they now number eleven, with an average attendance of nearly two hundred.
In 1828, the Rev. Roswell Ingalls had a select school for six months in the old Presbyterian church on Union Hill, and in 1829, in the school-house, near Mr. Abel's.
The Gibson Academy, still standing on Kennedy Hill, was built mainly through the influence of Joseph Washburn, Esq., President of the Board of Trustees. It was ready for occupancy in 1841, but no academic school was held in it for any time worthy of notice. Select schools, at different periods, were taught here, first by Miss R. S. Ingalls, and Mr. Maxon, from Harford, then by J. J. Frazier, and afterwards, a Mr. Blatchley, frum Wayne County, taught one year. The next select schools were held in Gibson Hollow.
In 1859 A. Larrabee, since county superintendent, taught here for a time. The Misses Stevens, from Vermont, succeeded him for three years; M. L. Hawley and assistants three years; a Miss Bush, and possibly other teachers since.
Gideon Lewis, a Baptist Evangelist, appointed about 1806, was the first resident minister of Gibson. His name appears on the tax-list of Clifford (which included Gibson), in 1807, marked " clergyman ;" but there was then no religious organization within the present limits of Gibson, the first being effected by Elijah King (a traveling preacher on Broome Circuit, which extended across the Susquehanna River, south of Great Bend), who formed a Methodist class in Gibson in 1812 or 1813. Of this George Williams was leader, and Margaret Bennett, Sarah Willis (afterwards wife of John Belcher), Susanna Fuller, and J. Washburn, the other members. [See Early Methodism,' by Dr. Geo. Peck.] In 1810 a class had been formed at " Kent's Settlement," afterwards Gibson, and now Herrick.
Christopher Frye is said to have preached the first Methodist sermon in Gibson. He was on the Wyoming Circuit as early as 1806, and the circuit then included Hopbottom (or Brooklyn).
Dr. Geo. Peck states that "the first Methodist sermon in Gibson was preached at the house of a Mr. Brundage, a Baptist, on what is now called the Thomas place." This is evidently a
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misprint, and should be the Holmes place, now Kennedy's, near where the Methodist church stood before its removal to South Gibson. Dr. Peck himself traveled the circuit through Gibson in 1819. He says of Frye : " He was a large man, had a great voice, and a fiery soul. Great revivals followed him."
Of Nathaniel Lewis, of Harmony (now Oakland), a local preacher, who early held meetings in this section : " He was rough as a mountain-crag, but deeply pious. He could read his Bible and fathom the human heart, particularly its developments among backwoodsmen. Obtaining information of a place where there had been no religious worship, some distance from his home, he visited the place. He went from house to house inviting the people to come out to meeting. He took for his text : Ye uncircumcised in heart and ear, ye do always resist the Holy Ghost.' Many were pricked in the heart; a great revival followed ; and seventy souls, who were happily converted to God, dated their conviction from that sermon."
William Chamberlin, whose parents resided at Gibson, was licensed to preach September 17, 1817, and was ordained by the Susquehanna Presbytery at Harford, Nov.12, 1817, "to preach the gospel to the aborigines." He joined the Cherokee Mission in company with Rev. Asa Hoyt, also a member of the Susquehanna Presbytery.
A Congregational society was organized in Gibson, Nov. 21, 1818, by Revs. E. Kinsbury, M. M. York, and O. Hill. It was composed of ten members : Wright Chamberlin and wife, William Holmes and wife, John Seymour, Abigail Case (wife of Charles Case), Eunice Whitney (afterwards Mrs. Moses Chamberlin, Jr.), Deborah Burton, Ann Holmes, and Betsey Holmes.
W. Chamberlin and W. Holmes were chosen deacons, and John Seymour clerk. The first communion was administered Nov. 23, 1818, by Rev. M. M. York. Sept. 26, 1820, the Susquehanna County Domestic Missionary Society was formed, and this church became auxiliary to it.
There were no additions to the church-membership until Nov. 18, 1821, when Arunah Tiffany, wife, and mother, and Polly Follett joined the church. About this time Rev. E. Conger, employed by the Susquehanna County Domestic Missionary Society, labored in Gibson, and more than usual religious interest existed. Near the close of the year, Rev. John Beach came among them ; and March, 1822, the people agreed to hire him for one year. Of forty-three who were pledged to his support, thirty-six were living a quarter of a century later. The details of the subscription contrast too well with the present ability and liberality of the town to be omitted : Total amount of cash subscriptions, $35.25 ; of good wheat, equivalent to $16 ; rye and corn, $86 ; oats, $100; butter, $114 ; something undeciphera-
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ble, $150; sugar, $81; flax, $102; wool (besides three sheep), $47. (Besides 105 lbs. of pork, $5 in boots and shoes, and $5 in merchandise).
The agreement was to pay this "to the Trustees of the Presbyterian Society of Gibson." It is certain the church sent delegates to the Presbytery about this time.
Rev. Mr. Beach brought his family to Kentuck, in May, 1822, and was with the church two years and a half. [The statements that follow, down to 1863, appear in the church records written by Deacon Tiffany] :—
" In the spring of 1823 A. Tiffany gave the use of an acre, which was planted with corn, and cultivated -by the people of Kentuck, for the use of the County Missionary Society. In 1824 one acre of land on Union IIill was purchased from James Bennett for $20, by the church and society, and they then contracted with Elisha Williams to build a meeting house (36 x 26 feet. and 12 feet between joists, with arched beams), to be finished outside and the floor laid (the timber being found for him) for $100. Nearly half this sum was subscribed by the people of Kentuck. In 1825 the missionary acre was sold for $20.
"From 1828 to 1830, the Rev. Jas. Russell was half the time in Gibson, and the other half in Mt. Pleasant. Rev. Isaac Todd, sent out by the 0. S. Educational Society of Philadelphia, labored through the years 1830 and 1831. His salary was $250 per year, and he was boarded. A. Tiffany, M. Chamberlin, Esq., and Deacon William Holmes were responsible for four months each. The Educational Society gave $100 each year.
"The weekly prayer-meeting was kept up, and the church was never more blessed with a spirit of fervent prayer before nor since. There was not a communion season in the two years but that more or less were added to the church.'
" Mr. Todd was inkrumental in getting the church finished inside and out, and he obtained $60 in New Jersey to secure a charter of incorporation, which was finally had in 1834. Early in January, 1833, the slips were sold for $108. In October, 1833, the form of government was changed to Presbyterian, and J. Chamberlin, Arunah Tiffany, J. B. Buck, and P. K. Williams were chosen elders. The Rev. Samuel T. Babbit preached through this year. [The first two were chosen deacons, May, 1854.] January 1, 1834, Alonzo Abel and E. Whitney, Jr., were ordained deacons. The latter died, May, 1852. The first case of discipline was reported in 1835. In the following year the Rev. John Sherer was employed, and, by vote, the slips were to be free.
" During the next ten years Revs. M. Thatcher, Lyman Richardson, and, Eli Hyde occupied the pulpit. July, 1846, Rev. Geo. N. Todd came as stated supply for this church, in connection with the one at Ararat; and November, 1847, he became the first installed pastor. About this time there was a discussion as to the propriety of moving the church edifice over to the turnpike, near the Methodist church then standing on Gibson's Hill. It was decided in the negative. A Sabbath-school was organized with ten or fifteen scholars ; Deacon Abel, Superintendent. In June, 1849, one person joined the church on profession of faith—' the first in ten or twelve years.'" [This would indicate in spiritual matters a somnolence equal to that exhibited in person by the church members of that day, when ' perhaps not a member but got lost in sleep during the exercises of the Supper ! But, possibly, this tendency to ' sleep in meeting' was not stronger in Gibson than elsewhere in farming communities, when those who were actively employed in the open air during most of the waking hours of six days, found it difficult to
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do otherwise than observe the command to rest on the seventh. At this time the church numbered but 33. Three years later there were three more members, making 109 from the organization of the church to March, 1852.
But as little life as the church, by its own record, had evinced, there were yet in it a few things worthy of imitation. The members prayed for each other by daily rotation. When one of the female members, who had been bed-ridden for years, appeared in church for the first time after her recovery, the fact was noted on the books of the church—showing that each member was of value to all the others.]
Rev. Mr. Todd's pastoral relation to the people of Gibson and Ararat was dissolved December, 1833. Early in 1855, Rev. O. W. Norton took his place, and occupied it three
In November and December, 1856, some unusual religious interest in the community is noted. The Rev. Mr. Allen came in August, 1858, and still continues as pastor of the Union Hill
Silas Chamberlin was chosen deacon in 1858.
The subject of a new church edifice was agitated in the spring of 1863, but one was not begun until 1868 ; it was finished and dedicated July 7th, 1869.
The first Methodist church was erected in 1837, on Kennedy Hill. In 1868, it was sold to be taken down and removed to South Gibson, where it was re-erected; the same frame, outside covering of the walls, wainscoting, slips, doors, etc.—all used, with the addition of a lecture-room, built new, and the whole neatly finished.
The Methodist church at Gibson Hollow was begun in 1868, and completed and dedicated June 3d, 1869. Just prior to this, a newspaper correspondent described it correctly thus:—
" The taste, personal supervision, and pains-taking liberality of Judge Burrows, have been strikingly manifest in the projection and completion of this edifice. Messrs. Perry, Scott, and Shepardson have won for themselves an enviable reputation by the mechanical skill they have evinced in the execution of their work. It will bear the closest scrutiny, and speaks for itself. The walls and ceiling of the building are appropriately frescoed. The windows are of stained glass. The pulpit is well proportioned, and constructed of black walnut,.with tastefully turned columns and well proportioned panels and mouldings. The slip ends are made of red oak with black walnut trimmings. The wainscoting and breastwork are also of the same materials. The building has been carpeted throughout, and is heated by a furnace in the basement, on new and improved principles. The steeple, or tower, is unique, and is furnished with a silvery-toned bell from the foundry of Jones & Co., 'l'roy, N. Y. One of Mason & Hamlin's organs is ordered, and it is expected will be on hand prior to dedication. There is a lecture-room in the rear of the church, which is used for Sabbath-school and other meetings. The folding doors in the recess behind the pulpit, can be thrown back, and thus increased accommodation can be secured on extraordinary occasions. Take it all in all, as to workmanship chaste execution, and general convenience, we hesitate not to pronounce it a model cuu.ntry church."
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210 - HISTORY OF SUSQUEHANNA COUNTY.
The cost, including the bell and furnishing, was about $11,500. There is probably no better finished church edifice in the county.
The Baptists of Gibson united with those of Jackson, and were organized as a church by Elder D. Dimock in 1825. They then belonged to the Abington Association, but were dismissed to that of Bridgewater in 1828. (See History of Abington Association, by E. L. Bailey.)
Their meetings were formerly held in a school-house (now burned), above Pope's mills; when they built a church it was at Jackson Corners. Among their regular pastors were Elder G. W. Leonard in 1831; J. B. Worden, 1844-51; N. Callender, 1852 ; R. G. Lamb, 1853.
The Universalist church was built about 1839 at Gibson Hollow, but there was no regular church organization until thirty years later.
There are now five churches—Methodist and Universalist at Burrows' Hollow ; Presbyterian on Union Hill ; Methodist at South Gibson, and Old School Baptist on the creek above Gelatt Hollow.
In 1829, a violent opposition was made to secret organizations by many in the township, and at the same time earnest effort was begun in the temperance cause.
For several years after the settlement, Gibson was dependent upon other towns for medical assistance, or at least upon such as were outside of its present limits. Dr. Chandler, in 1804, and Dr. Denny, ten years later, were confined to specialties, and it does not appear that a regular M. D." came to the township until 1824, when Dr. Wm. W. Tyler advertised his arrival. Apparently his stay was short; but, in 1825, Dr. Chester Tyler (not related to the former) established himself on Kennedy Hill, where he remained in practice until his death in 1846. He was an elder in the Presbyterian church. He had six children ; his only son, James, resides in Montrose.
In January, 1830, Dr. Wm. W. Pride, a returned missionary from the Choctaws, was established at Burrows' Hollow. He remained there about four years, and then removed to Springville. Luther Price took his house and lot, which are now owned and occupied by Wm. T. Case, Esq.
About the same time (1834) Drs. J. W. and G. N. Brundage (brothers) came from Orange County, N. Y. Both are now dead, as is also Dr. D. F. Brundage, son of the former. Dr. G. N. Brundage died in 1838. The house occupied by his brother for many years is now owned by D. Pritchard.
The water cure buildings, erected by Dr. D. F. Brundage, were recently burned.
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Dr. E. L. Brundage,¹ a brother of the first two Drs. Brundage, located in Franklin about the same time they came to Gibson ; and now he and his son, Dr. Norman B., are at South Gibson. At the latter place Dr. Charles Drinker was established in successful practice until within a week or two of his decease, October, 1869, at the house of his father, in Montrose, Pa.
RUSH is the fifth of those townships of old Luzerne of which he area was comprised wholly, or in part, of territory after wards set off to Susquehanna County.
1801.—At January sessions of the court of Luzerne County, to petition was presented for the erection of a new township to be called Rush, its boundaries to extend
" From the fortieth to the twenty-seventh milestone on the State line—the northwest corner of old Lawsville—thence south eighteen miles, thence west eighteen miles to a corner in the line north of old Wyalusing Township, south of Wysox, to a point due east from Standing Stone, thence north five miles to a corner, thence east five miles, thence to the place of beginning."
The report of viewers appointed at that time was made in the following November. Though it was accepted, it is evident, from the bounds of the township as always afterwards recognized, that an error occurred in their statement of the limits of the northern line—" To begin at the forty-first milestone and extend thirteen miles to the twenty-eighth milestone"—thus failing to reach Lawsville by one mile. [The milestones were numbered from the Delaware River westward.] Also, upon the erection of Susquehanna County, its west line extended south from the fortieth milestone, and from all that can now be ascertained, the west line of Rush was the county line for thirteen miles; five miles square remained in Bradford (then Ontario) County. Practically, the township extended east to the line of old Nicholson ; and south, at least, to the line of Susquehanna County, as afterwards run. A portion of Brain-trim (now Auburn) may be excepted ; but the taxables of Rush,² for the year 1801, included residents of Springville and Brook-
¹ Since deceased.
² Rush, or Rindaw —both names being given to the election district—although " Rindaw," by the Yankees, was confined to a very small town, as marked on a map of Connecticut surveys, 1799.
212 - HISTORY OF SUSQUEHANNA COUNTY.
lyn, or those who, without change of locality, were afterwards included in the latter townships. Rush was then the ninth of ten districts for justices in Luzerne; and, apparently, also for elections; the tenth included Nicholson, Lawsville, and Willingborough. Isaac Hancock was justice for the former district, and Asa Eddy, Thomas Tiffany, and John Marcy were justices for the latter. Nicholson, as well as Rush, extended beyond the line of our county, and Justices Hancock and Marcy were never its residents.
Upon the erection of Bridgewater, November, 1806, Rush received definite limits; being left eight miles on the State line, by eighteen miles north and south.
The township was named in honor of Judge Jacob Rush, president of the courts of Common Pleas in the circuit consisting of the counties of Berks, Northampton, Luzerne, and Northumberland. For seven years previous he had been chief justice of the Supreme Court, but, on the re-appointment of Judge McKean to that office, he accepted the position of circuit judge August, 1791.
In 1812, twenty-four of the residents of Rush signed a petition to have a new township formed from it, eight miles square, adjoining the State line, to be called Bennington. January, 1813, the first court of Susquehanna County was petitioned to divide Rush into three parts, viz., Choconut, Middletown, and Rush—the latter to be left eight miles east and west, by six miles north and south, The petition was granted "nisi," November, 1813, and "finally," January, 1814.
The area of Rush wai again reduced, in 1846, by the erection of Jessup; and more recently by the addition to the latter township of about eighty rods on the Wyalusing, north to the line of Forest Lake. Thus the present north line of Rush extends but five and one-half miles; the south line eight miles; and the whole area about thirty-five square miles. It once included, in addition, two hundred and thirty-five square miles; but this, now absorbed by nine other townships, will require no further attention here.
Rush, as well as Jessup, is traversed through the centre from east to west, by the Wyalusing—one of the few streams of the county retaining its sweet-sounding Indian name. But this is only in part retained. The Iroquois word as given by Zeis-berger, is Machwihilusing, meaning the "beautiful hunting grounds," a definition not unlike that given on a previous page —" Plenty of meat." The Lenape or Delaware word—having only an additional l—Machwihillusing is said to mean "at the dwelling place of the hoary veteran." The former definition best agrees with what is known of the vicinity when first occupied by a civilized race.
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Prior to 1759, there was an Indian village at the mouth of the Wyalusing (about fourteen miles southwest from Rush), which was called by Papoonhank, the chief, Machhachloosing, a name subsequently variously written Michallousen, Maninuchlooscon, Mockocklooking, Qaihaloosing, Wighalooscon, Wighalusui, and by the Moravian missionaries during the time of the mission, Machwihilusing, M'chwilusing, and Wialusing.
In 1766, they laid out a town which was named Friendenshuetten, or Huts of Peace. In 1767-68, they erected here a large church, with a cupola and a bell—the first bell that ever sounded in this section.
In 1772, the mission was removed to Ohio.
We learn from Col. Hubley's and Thomas Grant's journals of Sullivan's expedition into the country of the Six Nations, that in August of 1779, when a division of his army encamped at Wyalusing, there " was not the appearance of a house to be seen, the old Moravian town having been destroyed partly by the savages, and partly by the whites, in the present war." Hubley furthermore states, that the plantation here was formerly called the " Old Man's Farm," a name which would appear to corroborate Heckewelder's interpretation of Wyalu-
The north and middle branches of the Wyalusing join the main stream, or east branch, in Rush; Deer Lick Creek, and the outlet of Elk Lake, with some smaller streams, flow into it from the south. Bixby's Pond, on the line between Middletown and Rush, is the only sheet of water larger than a millpond.
Mineral Springs (see Mineral Resources), of some prospective value, exist on the Deer Lick, but, singularly enough, salt is not one of their ingredients, though from the earliest times deer sought the locality, a salt spring being near.
Except when the roads follow the streams, they are very hilly, but the traveler who gains the hilltops is amply repaid by the views he obtains. This is particularly true of the eminence just west of the Mineral Spring, from which one looks. up the valley of Wyalusing to Cemetery Hill at Montrose ; but the stream itself is hidden by the overlapping hills that border its winding course. Devine Ridge, in the eastern part of the township, was so named from a family who first occupied it more than fifty years ago.
Soon after the close of the Revolutionary struggle, some of the Wyoming settlers pushed northward on the Susquehanna and along its tributaries, Wyalusing being one of them ; other settlers came from the New England States, via the Susquehanna, to Great Bend, and over the hills; while still others kept
214 - HISTORY OF SUSQUEHANNA COUNTY.
to the river in canoes, and so reached the Wyalusing, and gathered along its shores.
As early as 1794, Isaac Brownson and family (eight in all) were at the forks or junction of the North Branch (the place long occupied by the late H. J. Champion).
Of his sons, Elisha, settled in Windham, Bradford County, and John one mile west of his father on the road coming in from the north, a few rods east of Sherwood's hotel.
Daniel Ross came in soon after I. Brownson, and located just below him. He was the first, postmaster.
In 1795, Dan Metcalf was on the farm next below, which has since been known as the old Hancock place. At this time (we are told by Mrs. Ichabod Terry, one of Mr. Metcalf's daughters), the settlers below her father's place were in the following orer : Thomas Tillotson (Andrew Canfield with him), Salmon Bosworth, — Preston, Benajah Bostwick, Ephraim Fairchild, Ezekiel Brown, Samuel and Aden Stevens, — Rockwell, Elisha Keeler, John Bradshaw, Abraham Taylor, Jonas Ingham, and Job amp. These, though below the present county line, were then considered neighbors of settlers above the forks.
The graves of some of these early settlers may be seen in the cemetery, near the Stevensville church ; four miles below the Susquehanna County line. Benajah Bostwick died in 1864 he was born in 1776; Isaac Hancock in 1820, in his eightieth year; his wife died two years later; Deacon Aden Stevens in 1858, aged 88; John Bradshaw in 1814; Daniel Ross in 1837, aged 68. Mr. Metcalf removed, in 1798, to a location about one and a half miles above the forks, on the East Branch.
Andrew Canfield moved from Litchfield County, Connecticut, about the 20th of January, 1797, with his wife and six children, and reached the forks, or rather a point. a little below, on the 5th of February, 1797. There was then no road from Great Bend to the Wyalusing. They crossed the Delaware River near Port Jervis, and struck the Susquehanna at Skinner's Eddy; thence came up the river and creek to the place mentioned above (outside of Susquehanna County), to the house of Thomas Tillison (or Tillotson), where they lived two years before moving to Middletown. They drove what was then called a spike team—a yoke of cattle with a horse as leader hitched to a wood-shod sled. His son, Amos, then 15 years Old, now (1870) in his eighty-fifth year, says :—
" We drove one cow, which we milked night and morning for the children ;" and adds, respecting the settlement: " A family of the name of Rossell, two brothers and a sister, lived three-fourths of a mile up the East Branch, on
HISTORY OF SUSQUEHANNA COUNTY - 215
what has since been called the Captain Howell place ; and all were deaf and dumb. They afterwards removed to the Lake country.' There was no clearing between them and Great Bend. This was just prior to the settlement of Lawsville.
"The next summer after we came, Joab Picket, from Connecticut, cut a fallow on the place now owned by N. D. Snyder, which was not burned till the summer of 1799. [Mr. Miner mentions him and family at the latter date.; Trees were marked from the Forks to Great Bend, but the route was west of Montrose some three miles.
" I recollect two brothers named Bennett, who came in the next winter after we did. They drove an ox-team, and crossed the Susquehanna at the Bend, and made their way to the Forks. The snow was nigh three feet deep. They drove their oxen until their team was tired out, when they left their load, and drove them as far as Picket's fallow ; where they left them to browse in the yoke, while they made their way to the Forks, with their feet badly frozen. The next day they got my father to go after the cattle and sled. He took me with him. We took a knapsack of corn for the oxen, and victuals for ourselves. The oxen had taken their track and gone back. We followed some three or four miles and found them feeding on top of a bill west of Montrose. We then drove on until we found the sled. As it was night, we fed the oxen some corn, and cut down a bass-wood tree, to which we chained them. We prepared for the night by building a fire and getting some hemlock boughs to make a bed of. It snowed all night. The next day we returned.
" One of the oxen with which my father moved in died the next spring ; and he made a short yoke, in which he worked the remaining ox by the side of his horse. He drove them the same as he did the oxen, without reins. For two years it was the fancy team in that region.
" There was plenty of game in the woods, and trout in the creeks. We could kill a deer or catch a mess of fish any day. Bears, wolves, and panthers were often killed."
Silas Beardsley, afterwards on the North Branch, was then at the Forks.
A beautiful row of large maples now skirts the road on the flat where Joab Picket's first cabin stood, on the opposite side of the creek from Snyder's hotel, and where an old apple tree still stands. No name occurs more frequently in the early annals of the town than Captain Picket's. (He rose to the rank of major.) From his opposition to the claims of the Pennsylvania landholders, arose what is sometimes styled the "Picket war," in which it must be owned he was the. aggressor. This was a second assault upon Captain Bartlet Hinds (who was the first to give up the validity of a Connecticut title), five years after the famous riot mentioned in the chapter on te Intrusion Law. An indiscreet use of fire-arms, in carrying out his opposition to having the land surveyed under the Pennsylvania claim, brought him before the court. He was indicted April, 1808, tried the following November, found guilty, and was sentenced to pay thirty dollars and the costs of prosecution. The decision in this case, and the opportune influence of Dr. Rose about this time, finally quieted the people, if it did not convince them.
216 - HISTORY OF SUSQUEHANNA COUNTY.
Captain Picket held several town offices. He removed from the flat and resided, at the time of his death, in that part of Rush now included in Jessup. He and his wife died on the same morning, May, 1832, both aged sixty-one, and were buried in the 'same grave, in the cemetery near the Bolles school-house. Ile had seven sons: Samuel, born in Connecticut, 1791, now lives in Auburn, Susquehanna County; Shelden, who never resided here; Daniel, Charles Miner P., the first male child born in Rush ; Orrin, Anson, and Almon ; Polly, his only daughter, married Alanson Lung.
Hon. Charles Miner styled Captain Picket "the famous painter killer." He had the first saw-mill on the Wyalusing in the town.
In 1798, Colonel Ezekiel Hyde, the Yankee leader, was at the Forks, in "Rindaw ;" the west line of "Usher" being in Rush, between Metcalf and Hyde. He was engaged in surveying, and selling lots under the Connecticut title. In what manner he became so much of a Pennsylvanian as to be appointed postmaster at Wilkes-Barre, so early as 1804, does not appear. He died in 1805.
Captain Jabez Hyde, a near relative of Co)onel Hyde, was at the Forks, next east of Isaac Brownson, in 1799, with his family.
Jabez Hyde, Jr., is said to have been there even two years earlier.
The year 1799 witnessed a rapid increase in the number of settlers on the East Branch, or main stream of the Wyalusing.
Nathan Tupper and William Lathrop came in together, from Unadilla, N. Y., locating at what is now Grangerville. They cut their road a part of the distance. Stephen Wilson's house was then the only one in Bridgewater. Deacon Lathrop's cabin had only a blanket for a door, and he was obliged to pile up wood against it at night to keep out the wolves. His location was at the mouth of Lake Creek. He lived here until his death, in 1865, in his ninetieth year. Of the ten children of Wm. Lathrop, only two, Nelson and Catharine (widow of Eben Picket, of Jessup), are iving in Susquehanna County.
Hiel Tupper, son of Nathan, settled on the Middle Branch, in Rush, two miles from any inhabitant, in one direction, and three miles in another. He married Phalla Downer, Feb. 5, 1807, bad eight children (the sons were Levi and arvey), and lived on the same place till he died, Jan. 19, 1865.
While preparing his log house in the woods, his home was two miles off; and he was accustomed, on Monday morning, to take a load of provisions, and stay until Saturday night, often not seeing a human being duri'ng the week.
He was once hired to go to Great Bend for some cattle that
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had strayed away. He found them at Snake Creek, where night overtook him ; and, as it was cold, he was obliged to pass the hours in running around a tree to keep warm. He did not see a person while gone from home.
Harry and Loren Tupper, younger sons of Nathan, with his five daughters—Mrs. Spencer Lathrop, Mrs. Nehemiah Lathrop, Mrs. Merritt Mott, Mrs. Willard Mott, and Mrs. Abel Chatfield ;settled within the county.
Enoch Reynolds, of Norwich, Connecticut, established a store at Rindaw (Hyde's place), as an experiment. Charles Miner says of him :—
“A few years after, I found him at Washington, one of the comptrollers of the treasury, with a salary of $1700 a year. He was a learned and accomplished gentleman, and would relieve the tedium of a journey through an uninhabited tract of road, by a story from Shakspeare (Macbeth, or Lear with his heartless daughters), as perhaps no other settler could equal."
Cyril (or Seril) Peck came to explore in 1799, and afterwards cleared the Williams farm, in the lower part of the township, near Auburn, where he resided until his death, in 1811.
At April sessions, 1799, the court at Wilkes-Barre was petitioned to order a road "from near the Forks of the Wyalusing to intersect the road from Tunkhannock to Great Bend," etc., arid viewers were appointed, who reported at August sessions,
" Beginning at the southeast corner of K Hyde's store, thence running to Captain Picket's, thence to the creek by S. Maine's, thence to Mr. John Reynolds', thence to Ozem Cook's, thence to Captain Hinds', thence to Snake Creek, thence to the Barnum north and south road running through Kirby and Law's settlement, to a tree by D. Barnum's, thence on to intersect the road running from the Great Bend to Tunkhannock near the bank of Wyley's Creek, about one hundred and twenty chains south of Great Bend." Report approved.
This, with the minute details omitted, gives the route of' a road, which has again and again been altered in certain places, along the Wyalusing.
The same year, Ezekiel Hyde and others petitioned for a road afterwards obtained, from the Forks, nearly north to the State line; and others petitioned for one from the Forks to Tioga Point.
In 1800, Walter Lathrop, from New London County, Conn. (father of the late Judge Benjamin Lathrop), settled on what is now known as the Levi Shove farm ; but he remained there only two or three years, when he removed to a farm in Bridgewater, nearly three miles south of Montrose, where he died in 1818.
"The farms on the Wyalusing below the present western line of Jessup, were occupied by the first settlers in the following order : Levi Leonard,
218 - HISTORY OF SUSQUEHANNA COUNTY.
Elijah Adams, Nathan Tupper, Wm. Lathrop. Salmon Brown, John Jay, Joab Picket, Dan Metcalf, Jabez Hyde, Isaac Brownson, and Daniel Ross.
" In 1801, when Isaac Hancock was appointed justice of the peace for Rush, he was located where Dan Metcalf began in 1795, on the farm adjoining that of Daniel Ross. When Susquehanna County was erected, its west line was run between them, and the name of the part set off with Bradford County, was changed to Pike township.
" Esq. Hancock was born near Westchester, Pa. Before the Revolutionary war, he was at Wyalusing for a time, and returned there about 1785.¹ He is mentioned on the records of Luzerne County as a taverner' for Springfield township, in 1788. At this time he was also one of the overseers of the poor, for the district composed of the whole extent of Luzerne County, from the mouth of the Meshoppen, north to the State line. His sons were John and Jesse. Of his seven daughters, Mrs. Daniel Ross, Mrs. Jesse Ross, and Mrs. Benajah Frink were residents of this county. The last named was twin with Jesse H., and is the only one of the family now living. Mrs. Frink states, that Polly Canfield (of the Middletown family) taught school on a rock, somewhere on the farm of Daniel Ross, about 1798, and had six scholars.
" Huldah Fairchild, daughter of Ephraim, also taught school early in this neighborhood.
" Elders Sturdevant and Thomas Smiley were among the first preachers here.
" There was, in 1801, no settler on the east and west road between Elk Lake, in the present township of Dimock, and the mouth of its outlet, in Rush."
April, 1801, on petition of Seril Peck and others, viewers were appointed to lay out a road from Joab Picket's, south along the Deer Lick to Auburn. They accomplished their task August, 1802, and reported at January sessions, 1803. Jabez Hyde, Jr., was assessor in 1802, and Joab Picket and Stephen Wilson were supervisors; Aden Stevens was collector. The latter two resided at the east and west extremes of the township, eighteen miles apart ; Stephen Wilson being one-half mile below Montrose, and Colonel Stevens at Stevensville, now Bradford County. The territory the collector canvassed is now embraced in eight or ten townships; the county seat was seventy miles distant, " to which the scanty taxes—only $130 —gathered by a thousand miles travel through trackless swamp and forests, were conveyed. Few, if any; remain whose names were then on the list." Colonel Aden Stevens died July 28, 1858, aged eighty-eight.
In 1804, elections were held at Jabez Hyde's.
Colonel Thomas Parke was supervisor of Rush in 1805. J. W. Raynsford was at the same time one of the auditors. Soon after they were included in Bridgewater.
Not long after the beginning of the century, changes occurred in the occupation and ownership of the farms on the Wyalusing. Most of the cabins of the first residents were nearer the creek, and across the road, from the houses of the
¹ From Rev. D. Craft's Wyalusing.'
HISTORY OF SUSQUEHANNA COUNTY - 219
present. In several cases we have only the memory of survivors to indicate their sites—the old landmarks and relics of former occupancy being obliterated.
In 1806, Col. Ephraim Knowlton came to the Leonard farm. He resided here until his death, in 1838. The Adams farm, now owned by Robert Reynolds, was for years owned by John Hancock, and the house of the latter is still standing. Ebenezer Picket, Sr., came from Vermont several years later than his son Joab, and settled where Nathan Tupper had made the first clearing. The place was afterwards occupied by Warren Lung; and Robert Reynolds has recently moved to it. Mr. Picket's wife died here in 1808. He died in 1826, aged 80 years. Ebenezer Picket, Jr., resided with his father until his marriage (with Catharine, daughter of Deacon William Lathrop), when he built near where the Baptist meeting-house at Grangerville, now stands; he afterwards lived on the State road, but for thirty or more years preceding his death, he occupied the David Doud farm, next below the Bolles school-house. He died in 1867, in his 81st year.
In 1810, a road was surveyed from Jonathan West's (then in Bridgewater), to John Jay's, passing Nathan Tupper's place:
In 1811, Jabez Hyde, Jr., was elected sheriff' of Luzerne, under circumstances which showed the strong hold he had on the public confidence. In 1814, he was in the Legislature ; and two years later, on the election of Dr. Charles Fraser to the Senate, he was appointed by Gov. Snyder to take his place as prothonotary, register, recorder, and clerk of Susquehanna County. These offices he held until 1820. The next year he was again elected to the Legislature, and in 1823 was appointed one of the three commissioners for expending $50,000 in improving the navigation of the Susquehanna River. He was a delegate to the State Convention for altering the Constitution. After the revision, he was appointed by Gov. Porter to the Bench of Susquehanna County. Perseverance was strongly characteristic of Judge Hyde. Few men have in times of political excitement, held so many important trusts, and had so universally the esteem of their fellow citizens for strict high-minded integrity. He died at his residence, in Rush, Oct. 8th, 1841, aged 66.
Stephen Hyde resided with his father, and brother Jabez, Jr. He was accidentally and fatally shot while hunting, by Horace Dimock, in the summer of 1811 or '12.
In 1812, Dennis Granger came from Vermont, and located near the cemetery, where he resided until his recent death.
William Granger was killed, while assisting to raise the barn now standing near the main road, on' the place long known as, the Warren Lung farm.
220 - HISTORY OF SUSQUEHANNA COUNTY.
In 1813 or '14, Levi Shove occupied John Jay's farm, on which Walter Lathrop made the first clearing.
In 1818, Joab Picket's farm (now Snyder's) was occupied by William Ross.
That of Dan Metcalf was occupied by Ichabod Terry, who married Lucilla, daughter of Mr. Metcalf. Mr. Terry remained here until his death, in 1849, at the age of 66 years. It is but very recently that the large stone chimney of the old homestead disappeared.
Salmon Brown's place (now Elder H. II. Gray's), was for many years occupied by Alanson Lung.
Daniel Ross died on the place he cleared over seventy years ago. The homestead forms a part of the hotel of Win. H. Sherwood.
After the organization of Susquehanna County, and consequent division of Rush, one-fourth of the poor-tax was allowed, in 1813, to that portion remaining in Bradford County. The list of taxables for 1813, within the present bounds of Rush, in addition to the persons previously mentioned as residents, included several who appear to have remained but a few years : Hezekiah Low, Daniel Roots, and others. Jabez Sumner resided on the Deer Lick, and afterwards in A uburn. Fairchild Canfield was two miles up the North Branch.
Robert H. Rose, Henry Drinker, and others were taxed for unseated lands. Their names occur on the town records, for the first time, in the transcripts of 1810 and 1812.
The whole number, including residents of Choconut and Middletown—as they were before the organization of Jessup and Forest Lake—was about 180. The same year a bridge was ordered, near Joab Picket's, across the Wyalusing, to be built at the expense of the county. A road was surveyed from the North Branch to the Middle Branch of the Wyalusing.
In 1816, Lloyd Goodsell (from Auburn ?), Philander and Francis Pepper, from Connecticut; Robert Estes, and others were here.
John M. Brownson was then town cleric ; and in 1818, he was a merchant at the Forks. William Lathrop had a sawmill at the junction of Lake Creek with the Wyalusing.
Elections were held at Joab Picket's.
In 1819, Larry Dunmore, George Devine, Jacob Eaton, William Lathrop, Jr., and John Hancock, were among the new taxables. The last named was afterwards town clerk, overseer of the poor, and county commissioner.
Russel Very was here in 1820; Isaac Deuel in 1823.
In 1824, Rushville post-office was established; David Shove, postmaster.
In 1825, there appears on the town records a list of " ear-
HISTORY OF SUSQUEHANNA COUNTY - 221
marks," by which the sheep and swine of the different owners in the town might be recognized.
J. Demmon Pepper was on the Mineral Spring farm in 1826. His father was located not far from it.
David Dewers was here in 1827.
Tarbox, Burrows & Co. were merchants at Rushville in 1829. The building occupied by them was consumed by fire on the 29th of October, 1871.
In 1831, Samuel Shoemaker was taxed with a grist mill, near the confluence of the outlet of Elk Lake and Wyalusing Creek. Richard S. Shoemaker, a brother, purchased and took possession of this property in 1838. The present mills, grist and sawmill, were built in 1858; and make use of both of the above-named creeks. S. Shoemaker had seven sons, of whom four reside in Susquehanna County.
In 1835, Rush Centre post-office was established. Two years later, Bruce's Valley post-office took its place. It was located at the present residence of H. H. Gray. Alanson Lung and A. Picket were the postmasters here. This is discontinued, and Rush post-office,at Grangerville, takes its place. The East Rush post-office, of which J. F. Dunmore was the first post-master, was established prior to the last named.
David Hillis, the first Irish settler, came in 1836 ; — Carroll, in 1639 ; P. Redding, in 1841 ; and James Logan, in 1842.
Mrs. Catharine Calwell, born in Ireland, died in Rush, August, 1872, aged 105 years.
Within a few years, a Baptist church has been erected at Grangerville. At Rushville, the Presbyterian church was built in great part by Henry J. Champion and Chandler Bixby, both now dead. The Roman Catholic church is at Bixby's Pond. There are three M. E. churches in the township; at East Rush, Rush Center, and on Devine Ridge. The last named was built in 1867-8, principally through the liberality of George Devine and sons. Five of the latter live here on adjoining farms.
Among the physicians who have practiced in Rush, the first on record is Dr. Reuben Baker, who married a daughter of Isaac Hancock. He lived just below the latter, and consequently outside of the county ; but was generally to be found, it is said, at the Deer Lick—his leisure being spent in hunting. He practiced extensively over the western half of the county, prior to the in-coming of Dr. Leet, of Friendsville. (See Physicians.)
Rush has but one store, kept by N. Granger, at Grangerville, who has been in the business there for about twenty-four years.
222 - HISTORY OF SUSQUEHANNA COUNTY.
The poor-house of Rush, Auburn, Forest Lake, and Springville, is located on the Larry Dunmore farm.
The Wyalusing Railway, to extend from the mouth of the Wyalusing to the forks, or junction, of the North Branch, is projected.
DIMOCK was principally included in Springville from 1814 to December, 1832, when it became the nineteenth township, taking from Bridgewater one mile across its southern border.
The town was named in honor of Davis Dimock, then associate judge of the Susquehanna courts. Excepting a slight alteration of the line between Dimock and Jessup, its dimensions have remained as at first, six and a half miles east and west, by four and a half miles north and south.
From the timber frequently found here it has been sometimes called " The Basswood township."
With the exception of the outlet of Elk Lake and near tributaries, the township is wholly drained by the Meshoppen, or Mawshapi, in Indian language, signifying cord or reed stream. (So, Chapman, who generally quoted from Heckewelder; but another authority makes it glass beads, from a distribution of them among the Indians in this locality.)
The area of Dimock, under the Connecticut surveys, was comprised of parts of Chebur, Bidwell, Dandolo, and Manor. The last named was only three and three-quarters miles in width, while most of the townships were six miles square.
The first settlers of Dimock were Thomas and Henry Parke in 1796 ; Joseph Chapman and son Joseph in Chebur, temporarily, in 1798; George Mowry, and sons Ezekiel and Charles, as early as 1799, in the western part of Manor; Martin Myers and Thomas Giles the same year; Asa and Ezekiel Lathrop and Asahel Avery, 1800-1802.
Thomas Parke, usually styled Colonel Parke, came with his younger brother Henry from Charleston, R. I., June, 1796, and commenced a clearing on the Meshoppen Creek, near the southeast corner of what is now Dimock township. They were the sons of Benjamin Parke, who was slain at the battle of Bunker Hill (being in command of a company) June, 1775, leaving a widow, four sons, and two daughters. Thomas and Henry were the younger sons, and, under the care of their grandfather, a
HISTORY OF SUSQUEHANNA COUNTY - 223
Puritan clergyman, received a good education. Thomas was a fine mathematician, a good practical surveyor, and an occasional contributor to the newspapers of that day published at Wilkes-Barre by Charles Miner and others. He had filled several minor offices in his native State, invested his patrimony and means in the purchase of the Connecticut title to lands in Pennsylvania, and came here the legal owner, as he supposed, of some 10,000 acres—nearly half of the township of Bidwell—lying on the waters of the Meshoppen, and covering parts of what is now Dimock and Springville. He fixed his residence on the farm (Parkevale) where he lived till his death in 1842. When he came to look up his lands he found only two settlers west of "Nine Partners," and they were near to what is now Brooklyn Center. West of that to the Wyalusing Creek was a belt of twenty-five miles north and south, an unbroken forest. With the aid of his compass he explored and marked a path to the forks of the Wyalusing, the nearest place where any bread-stuffs could be obtained, from whence they were to be brought on his back until the next season, when a small green crop was raised. In the winter of 1797 he walked home to Charleston, R. I., and walked back the next spring.
In 1800, he returned to Rhode Island, and was married to Eunice Champlin, of Newport; and in 1802, brought her with an infant son to a log-cabin in his wilderness home. Here, a true helpmeet to her husband, and a blessing to all who knew her, she raised a family of eight children. She died November 10, 1858, in the ninetieth year of her age.
In an obituary notice of Col. Parke, published in the ' Susquehanna Register,' in 1842, it is stated that he was employed as an agent by several persons who held bodies ofiland under the same title as his own, and spent most of the first years of his residence here, in surveying and dividing the country into townships and lots for selling to the settlers. Knowing that this territory was covered bv the charter to Connecticut, and had always been claimed by the Connecticut company, he, in common with many of the soundest men in the Union, believed that the Connecticut claimants had the best title to the land. So believing, he firmly adhered to his rights, and defended the title both by argument and with his pen, until the legislative and judicial tribunals of the last resort had settled the question otherwise. He never believed the decree at Trenton just or right.
During the pendency of this controversy, he evinced that scrupulous honesty, and ,unswerving integrity, which through life characterized all his acts, by refusing to give up the agency for the Connecticut claimants, and to accept an agency on the other side, together with a lease for all the lands he claimed;
224 - HISTORY OF SUSQUEHANNA COUNTY.
which would have made his title indisputable. He thought that in so doing he would show a distrust of the title under which he and others claimed lands; give his opponents an advantage over others for whom he acted, and thereby injure those .who, relying upon his integrity, had entrusted their interests to his care, and who were not present to accept a surrender of his agency, and act for themselves. By this decision he lost all the worldly estate he possessed, and was afterwards obliged to purchase upon credit, from his successful opponents, paying, by surveying, about six hundred acres, including the farm upon which he resided and died.
He was for three years one of the commissioners of Luzerne County, and one of the three trustees appointed by the governor, in 1811, to run the lines, lay off; and organize Susquehanna County.
His eldest son, Hon. Benj. Parke, LL.D., after an absence of some thirty years, returned to the paternal home in 1860. This is near the sire of the log-house to which he was brought in 1802.
"That dwelling stood in a beautiful valley, nearly surrounded by hills. beside a brook of pure water which ran through, and gave name to the valley. Though of unhewn logs, it was of ample size and comfortable It appeared, however, as a home far different to those who then saw it for the first time, than it did to the one who had toiled six years to prepare it. Col. Parke brought with him his sister, a young and accomplished girl, besides his wife and infant son. They, as most of the women who emigrated early to Susquehanna County, had been reared in the bosom of New England families, and left the society of dear friends and relations. They had enjoyed, too, from childhood, a frequent intercourse with the city of Newport, the then emporium of New England fashion and style. What a change and contrast I A small clearing in the midst of a dense forest ; few neighbors within five miles, and none nearer than a mile and a half of their dwelling. Their house, being of larger size than most others near, and upon the only traveled road leading eastward, in that section. was the general stopping-place of most of those coming from the Eastern States, to look for or settle upon farms in that part of the country. Here they were most cheerfully received, and entertained without charge, though beds and floors were frequently filled and covered with lodgers.
" No one then thought of receiving pay from such transient guests. Their company and the news they brought from the outer world was more than an equivalent for their entertainment."¹
Sarah C., daughter of Col. Thomas Parke, was born here December 5, 1802—the first birth in the township.
One of our venerable townsmen who, when eighteen years old, was living at Col. Parke's, communicates the following in reference to Henry Parke:—
¹ Extracted from an address delivered at the Nineteenth Annual Fair of the Susquehanna County Agricultural Society, October 5, 1865, by Mr. Parke, then president of the society.
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" An uncle of the Hon. Benj. Parke was occasionally a resident there for some days together. He was a very sociable, intelligent gentleman, and I was often entertained with his account of the first settlement of that region. Among other things, he told of backing provision from Black Walnut Bottom, on the river, following a line of marked trees ; and once, being belated, he failed to find the clearing, and camped by the side of a log till morning. Starting again, in a few moments he discovered the clearing, and was much vexed that he had lain out so near home."
This incident proved a serious one to Mr. H. Parke; he became chilled that wintry night, and his constitution was permanently injured. He was an early school teacher, and for many years acted as constable, deputy sheriff; and tax collector for the northern part of Luzerne County, then extending to the north line of the State. He owned and, for several years, resided upon the farm (Woodbourne), now the residence of George Walker, Esq. He was never married. He died in the city of New York, in 1831.
The venerable Charles Miner, of Wyoming, wrote, not long before his death, respecting this region as it was in 1799 and 1800 :—
“Thomas Parke and his brother Henry—active intelligent men—with a black boy, were alone in Bidwell. Charles Mowry was one of my fellow-students in Nature's beechwoods academy. After I became a printer, he wrote an article for my paper. I said to him, Mr. Mowry, you are capable of better things than rolling logs. Come to my office, and in two years you will be fitted for a printer and editor.' Brother Asher at Doylestown needing help, he entered his office, proved a good writer, clear, nervous ; became preceptor in the academy ; established a paper at Downington, Chester County, which he sustained with profit and reputation many years. He was invited by Governor Findlay's friends to remove to Harrisburg, and he afterwards became canal commissioner. As honest and clever a fellow as ever breathed, but as thorough a Democrat as I was Federalist."
Reference was made in the annals of Brooklyn to the temporary residence, in 1798, of Captain Chapman and son, in Che-bur, to 400 acres of which they supposed they held a legal title; but this eventually shared the fate of Colonel Parke's.
They named their place " Montcalm ;" cleared a few acres around the site of the house they erected in 1799, on the Tingley farm, about a mile below Dimock Corners. In the fall of the same year it was occupied by Martin Myers, while his own house was being built a short distance below, and while the family of Captain Chapman were in Dandolo, on the farm now occupied by C. M. Chapman, his great-grandson. Joseph Chapman, Jr., remained there permanently but his father and the younger members of the family came to " Montcalm" in the spring of 1800.
" Isaac A. and Edward, sons of Captain Joseph Chapman, were boys who spent their days in the laborious occupation of felling and clearing the forest, and assisting to provide for the wants of the family ; and their evenings by the light of a huge blazing fire, studying whatever books could be obtained
- 16 -
226 - HISTORY OF SUSQUEHANNA COUNTY.
from the few settlers,' who lived within a circle of from ten to twenty miles around, and who were all neighbors warmly interested in each other's welfare and happiness. In this manner, aided by a very intelligent elder sister, and the occasional assistance of the more educated of the settlers, did these two brothers educate and improve themselves to such a degree, that to human apprehension, only an early death prevented them from being the very first men in our State. They were both excellent mathematicians, practical surveyors, and draughtsmen. Poetry and landscape painting were occasionally resorted to as an amusement, and many of the singular events and rude scenes of that new and wild country were the subjects of their pen and pencil. Edward afterwards studied law, and commenced the practice at Sunbury, where he died deeply lamented by all who ever bad the pleasure of his acquaintance." (From ' Harrisburg Keystone,' 1839. B. Parke, Esq. Editor.)
In reference to the sister to whom they were so much indebted, the Hon. Charles Miner said:—
" Miss Lydia Chapman, a lady of high intelligence and great merit, became an inhabitant of Wilkes-Barre and an instructress of a school. Married with Dr. G. W. Trott ; their accomplished daughter intermarried with the Hon. G. W. Woodward."
He added :—
" Edward and Isaac Abel Chapman opened upon the world first-rate men. The fine poem¹ by Edward, commencing—
' Columbia's shores are wild and wide,
Columbia's hills are high,
And rudely planted side by side,
Her forests meet the eye'—
justly challenges the critic's praise.
" Isaac became an editor; proved an excellent writer, but was too independent to be a party printer in ancient times. For many years he was engineer in the employ of the Mauch Chunk Company, whose confidence and favor attest his scientific accuracy and social merit."
In 1826, Isaac A. Chapman invented the Syphon Canal-lock. His death occurred December, 1827, at Manch Chunk. Two years later proposals were issued for the publication of his ' History of Wyoming,' which eventually appeared. The preface, by himself, bears date July 11, 1818. He took the census of usquehanna County in 1810.
Martin Myers was a Hessian soldier in the British army during the Revolution. He came to Pennsylvania from one of the New England States, having left the service before the close of the war, and settled down as a peaceable citizen of the country against which he had been sent to fight.
By the contract between the Government of Great Britain and the Prince of Besse-Cassel, a sum of money was to be paid to the latter for all the Hessians not returned, and they were, at the end of the war, carefully sought for to be taken back.
¹ This is said to have been written during the war of 1812. Edward Chapman taught school in Brooklyn in 1810, at which time Hon. B. Parke was one of his pupils.
HISTORY OF SUSQUEHANNA COUNTY - 227
Myers, not wishing to return, sought concealment, and was aided by a young woman with whom he had become acquainted. He was not found, and after the troops had left the country this woman became his wife. In the fall of 1799, he is said to have carried the follow in u g to the for load upks ofon hithe creek —s back from a distance Black's mill, on the Wyalusing, p of ten miles—the flour of one bushel of wheat, one bushel of rye, fourteen shad, and a gun. At the Forks he added to his load, one gallon and a pint of whiskey, a large bake-kettle weighing twenty-five pounds, and a common-sized cross-cut saw, all of which he carried without assistance thirteen miles further to his own residence. These thirteen miles were entirely in the woods, and he was guided only by a line of marked trees. This Samson like feat was performed by no " Samson in size," as we are told by his daughter, Mrs. Button, who also informs us that his grave is one-half mile east of Dimock Corners. He has a son, Alvin, now living in Rush. Another son, Surzardis, formerly resided in Dimock.
In 1799, Thomas Giles, from Conn., moved in between Col. Parke's place and Brooklyn. Soon after, his daughter Fanny, aged four years, while gathering chestnuts in the woods near the house, was lost. Many people joined in the search for her. " On the third day there were persons there who lived thirty miles away. No trace of her was ever found."
Asa Lathrop came from Conn., in 1800, but did not bring in his family until 1801; when they located near the present farm of Denison Thomas. He removed, not long after, to the outlet of
the lakes so long known by his name, where he built one of the first grist-mills, possibly the first in operation in all this section; though Harris' mill on the Wyalusing was projected previously. The mill is now owned by F. Fargo, a son oC Alice, the youngest daughter of Asa Lathrop.
Asa L— died in 1827, aged 72. His sons were James, Walter, and Asa. A story told by the eldest is repeated by one of his sons :—
James Lathrop, hearing the squealing of pigs, one bright moonlight night (about 1810), rose, went out, and found a bear had scaled the log fence—five feet high—with a porker weighing 200 lbs.; tipd had walked off hugging it, and was then in the act of getting over another fence, when, seeing Mr. L. coming and brandishing a bush-hook, he dropped the porker and took to the woods on all fours.
The sons of James were Israel B:, Wm. F., Austin B., and Charles J.
Ezekiel Lathrop's family are said to have been here before that of Asa, or in 1800. This is according to the statement of one of his sons, Nehemiah, who was eleven years old when his father came, and is now—Sept. 1870—eighty-two; while
228 - HISTORY OF SUSQUEHANNA COUNTY.
another son feels confident that it could not have been earlier than 1802. All outside testimony seems to favor the earlier date. (This instance of discrepancy may serve to show how extremely difficult it has been for the compiler, in many other cases, to reconcile two or more conflicting statements, each apparently reliable.)
The earliest religious services of the vicinity were held at the house of Ezekiel L—, very near the present line of Auburn, southwest of the Lakes. His son Dyer occupies a part of the old farm.
The sons of Ezekiel were: Spencer, Dyer, Nehemiah, Ezekiel, and John.
1801. Asahel Avery, wife, and six children came from New London Co., Conn., to the farm since known as that of Wm. D. Cope, but then mapped under the Connecticut title as the southeast corner of Manor. They entered their log-house when it was but two-thirds roofed. There was a flooring through the centre only, of split bass-wood logs; the horse and calf were on one side of this, and the fireplace—no jambs—was against the wall on the other side.
Bears were in the neighborhood of " Pine Hill " (the ridge on which C. Hollister lives), and one of the children, now a respected justice of the peace at Montrose, was once so effectually frightened by them as never to forget it.
Mr. A— was a carpenter, and his services were in requisition in remote portions of the county, then Luzerne. His cabin, on the sight of the present " tenant house," was about to be given up for a frame house across the road, the timber of which he had prepared, when he sold the place with his improvements, in 1808 or 9, to John Williams, and moved to Great Bend, where he died Feb. 1813. His widow removed to Montrose with her son Charles and died here.
John Williams sold, in a few years, to John W. Robinson, who purchased what was known as the Wallace estate-8000 acres—and all the contracts previously made. Mr. Avery had purchased under the Connecticut title.
On petition of Stephen Wilson and others in 1801, for a road to run past Thomas and Henry Parke's, the court appointed viewers, and the road was ultimately opened down to the Chapman farm (Montcalm), and thence to Col. Parke's, where it intersected a road leading eastward to " Nine Partners."
At an early day, Nehemiah Maine made a clearing where I. P. Baker now lives.
Ralph Loomis, from Ct., was east of the corners.
The following item was furnished by Mr. Jesse Bagley, July, 1871 :
HISTORY OF SUSQUEHANNA COUNTY - 229
"In 1806 I worked for Col. Parke when the first militia training was held there ; Thomas Parke, Captain, Myron Kasson, Lieut., Joseph Chapman, Ensign, and myself Sergeant or Corporal. Abiathar Tuttle is the only man now living who trained with me. Capt. (afterwards Col.) Parke proposed, that to every one who would the next time appear in uniform—blue coat and white pantaloons—he would give a dinner. About twenty so appeared and were treated to an excellent dinner."
In 1808, George W. Lane came from Windham Co., Vt., to the farm afterwards occupied many years by Philander Stephens. He removed to a place a little southwest of that, in
Samuel Davis and family came from the same place the same year, and located not far from Pine Hill.
About 1810 or 1811, Henry Parke taught a winter school at his house; and the families of Avery, West, and Fuller were represented in that school. The last named resided just below Capt. Bard, in Bridgewater, and his brother in-law, Elias West, was where Friend Hollister now lives ; the line between Bridgewater and Dimock running through the farm.
Joshua Smith, from Groton, Conn., reached Dimock (then Bridgewater) in 1812; the fourteenth day of his journey, and located on the east and west road leading past Lathrop's Lakes, where his son Urbane, the youngest of eleven children, now lives. A few years later, Silas, another son, when about ten years old, was followed by a pack of wolves just west of this place, and barely reached his father's yard in safety.
Mr. Smith died December 30, 1840, aged 76; his widow, Sabra, died April 3, 1842, aged 70. Both were highly esteemed members of the Baptist church.
Erastus and William Rathbun (the latter a clothier) were near the southern shore of the lakes prior to 1813, but remained only a few years.
Oliver Scott took up the place afterwards occupied by Samuel A. Brown (J. P. in 1821), between Woodbourne and the Corners, where a clump of pines is still to be seen, though the house they shaded was burned to the ground years ago.
Wm. Harkins, an early settler on the Hopbottom, came to Dirnock a few years later, and died here in 1825.
Amos and Allen Lawrence, from the same neighborhood, settled a mile or two east of the Corners.
About 1813, John Bolles and family removed from Wilkes-Barre to the Chapman farm (Montcalm), and remained there for several years. He then settled do the farm adjoining Dimock Corners, afterwards owned by Lewis Brush, Esq. He died in Bridgewater, at the residence of his son-in-law, ex-sheriff Thomas Johnson, at the age of 90.
Avery Bolles, his son, began on " Pine Hill," put up a small
230 - HISTORY OF SUSQUEHANNA COUNTY.
frame house, which he removed about forty-five years ago to his present farm, and Elhanan Smith took the place he left.
In 1814, Israel Hewitt began a clearing east of Dimock Corners. His farm is now owned by F. Newton and Wm. Bunnell.
Frazier Eaton began where Benjamin Blakeslee afterwards lived and died.
Jacob Perkins made an improvement on the place now owned by Samuel Sherer. He first occupied a log house of Elias West's, then Edward Fuller's place, until his own house
was built. From this he moved to the present Baxter place, on the Wilkes-Barre turnpike, where he died.
In 1814, Henry Parke and others petitioned for a road "from near Joshua Smith's to pass by or near to Phineas Arms', and come into the post-road near the house lately occupied by E. Fuller." Stephen Wilson, Isaac Post, Zebulon Deans, Jacob Roberts, Samuel Kellum, and John Bard were appointed viewers, August, 1814; their report was accepted, and in April, 1815, a certificate was issued to Z. Deans to open the road. The following month another certificate authorized the opening of a road from Joshua Smith's to a point near the house of Salmon Thomas, in Springville. The viewers were, Isaac A. Chapman, Ezra Tuttle, Frazier Eaton, and Joshua Smith.
About the same time, or a little previous, a road " from the tenth mile-tree past Thomas Parke's clearing" is mentioned— James Spencer, Ezra Tuttle, Salmon Tuttle, Zophar and Aaron Blakeslee, viewers. The road was finally ordered.
In 1814, George Young settled on the farm previously located by Denison Gere, and now owned by his son, John Young, ex-sheriff. He died in 1831, aged seventy-two. David Young, Sen., a brother of George, came in 1815, buying out Joseph and James Camp (of whom, as of Mr. Gere, nothing further is known). Mr. Young died before 1831, aged seventy-five. His farm of four hundred acres is divided, the homestead-lot being occupied by his grandson, Chas. M., son of John Newton Young. David Young, Jr., died within a few years.
In 1815, Samuel Kellum, formerly on the old Eldridge farm in Bridgewater, bought the Chapman farm, including three of the four corners where the State road crosses the Wilkes-Barre turnpike. Four years later he advertised the same for sale, stating that there were then four hundred and fifty thrifty apple trees on the place. The farm appears to have been purchased by Englishmen.
In 1816, Elisha Gates and his son-in-law, John Lewis, from Groton, Conn., settled on the farm immediately north of Col. Parke's. Mr. Gates was known as the best arithmetician in
HISTORY OF SUSQUEHANNA COUNTY - 231
his neighborhood. He was frequently called upon to solve many knotty and puzzling mathematical questions, not only by his neighbors, but by persons from other counties. He had four daughters, and two sons, John and George. In our late civil war, John had three, and George six sons (all he had), in the Union army.
About 1817, Simon Stevens, from Braintrim, located on the place formerly owned by Erastus and William Rathbun. He had fourteen children; three sons and three daughters still reside in the vicinity.
Mr. Stevens had filled the offices of commissioner and of register and recorder; and was well known and respected in the county. He was a prominent anti-Mason. He died in Dimock, May, 1841, aged about sixty-five.
In 1818, a new post-office was established, called Springville Four Corners, though the office itself was kept nearly a mile from the Corners, on the next hill north, by John W. Robinson, who afterwards sold to Wm. D. Cope. The house was the one for which Asahel Avery had made preparation ; it was burned in 1830, when Mr. Cope lost with it the most of his furniture.
" Woodbourne" post-office was a continuance of this, Enoch Walker, postmaster, until 1830, when it was removed to the Corners, receiving the old name, and Perrin Ross was appointed postmaster.
About 1819, a number of emigrants, mostly from England, settled at what is now Dimock Corners, which they called New Birmingham. Among them was Thomas Bedford, said to have been wealthy, and to have furnished his reputed brother-in-law, Thomas Emerson, the funds to erect the hotel now standing on the corner. A Mr. Hicks opened a store, and a Frenchman by the name of Major, a cabinet-maker and local preacher, also erected a house, and carried on business. After a few years, most of them sold out and left. Mr. Ross, mentioned above, purchased the northeast corner, afterwards owned by Dr. Denison.
Alexander Smith, born near Edinburgh, Scotland, left that country March, 1818, and landed in Philadelphia in May following. He came to Susquehanna County September, 1819, with James Young, Sr., and James Service. The last-named settled near Lathrop's Lakes.
Mr. Smith contracted with J. W. Robinson for eighty acres, a mile east of the Corners. He lived there for some time, then went to Forest Lake, came back to "the Cope place," afterwards was in Bridgewater, trnd is now spending the evening of his days near his son, Wm. W. Smith, of Montrose. This son and his sister, Christiana, were " the first twins of Dimock."
232 - HISTORY OF SUSQUEHANNA COUNTY.
In his first purchase, Mr. Smith was more fortunate than some of his neighbors who were able to pay for their lands; as those who had paid Robinson were afterwards obliged, with one exception, to pay Wallace or his widow, since the tract, extending nearly to Montrose, was mortgaged to him, and Robinson failed to raise the mortgage. This was due, doubtless, to the long time he allowed the settlers to make their payments. In the mean time, as he could give no valid deed, there was dis. trust among the settlers, some of whom were threatened with ejectment by Robinson ; but, "one morning," it is said, "he found a pail of tar and feathers, and a bag of powder and shot suspended from his door-latch, giving too strong a hint to be disregarded, and within twenty-four hours, he left the township."
Charles Miner says of Mr. Robinson, " we were early and through life, attached friends. He had been on the Wyalusing with Col. Hyde, as surveyor, in 1798. He removed to Wilkes-Barre, where he entered into mercantile business, and married a daughter of the revolutionary veteran, Col. Zeb. Butler. His daughter intermarried with the Hon. H. B. Wright."
Samuel Robinson, father of John W., came from Connecticut quite early, and settled in Auburn, on the farm next west of Ezekiel Lathrop.
Adam Waldie, printer and publisher, came from Hyde, on the Tweed, Scotland, in 1820. His two sisters, contributors to the Messenger,' which he afterwards published in Montrose, lived in his family, one mile northwest of Dimock Corners, on the farm now occupied by John Murray. He moved from there to Forest Lake.
In the fall of 1821, Joseph Baker, of Chester Co., father of Judge Baker, visited Susquehanna County, and in a letter to Charles Miner, then an editor in the southern part of the State, he wrote : " We visited John W. Robinson's and Dr. Rose's lands, more than any other, and I think there are twelve or fourteen miles square in Susquehanna Co., of as handsome and good land as I ever saw in the State." He bought between two and three hundred acres of improved land, adjoining the "Four Corners," six miles from Montrose ; and moved to the place in the spring of 1822.
The same season, Enoch Walker and son George came from Choconut to the farm now known as Woodbourne. Early in the century, Charles Miner¹ employed men to clear five acres here; and on this clearing, Henry Parke built a house, in which he and his sister resided. It now forms a part of the
¹ He must himself have superintended operations here, as, from a tree of his own planting, a basket of fruit, fi.ty years later, was presented to him by E. Walker. C. Avery, Esq., remembers that his father, Asahel Avery, cleared " up to the Miner fence," in 1806.
HISTORY OF SUSQUEHANNA COUNTY - 233
hospitable home of George and Sarah M. Walker. There are one or two small lakes in the vicinity. Lewis Walker, the great-grandfather of Enoch, emigrated in 1700, from Yorkshire, England, to Chester Co., Pa., and here the latter was born, as were also his father and grandfather. His parents were Joseph and Sarah Walker, members of the Society of Friends. Enoch came from Chester Co., with his children, in April, 1820, to the farm, late the residence of Caleb Carmalt, Lakeside, Choconut; where he remained two years, before removing to Woodbourne. One who spent many months, at different times, under his roof, says :—
"His earliest training was under the judicious care of an excellent Christian mother, whose precepts and example were the abiding rule of his life, and enabled him to endure with great fortitude, many and various trials. When young, he appeared as a minister among Friends; and in 1796, spent some time as a missionary to the Oneida Indians, under the auspices of the Yearly Meeting of Friends ; and traveled much in the service of the Gospel, and on business, until the close of a long and active life.
" He was ever a pattern of true hospitality, in word and deed ; careful in training his children in strict morality and religion, and ever kind and considerate for the happiness of all under his care and influence. He was active in promoting the settlement of the county with worthy and industrious persons, and always evinced a liberal and forbearing spirit towards every sect and denomination, in the fullest sense of a true Universal Christian Benevolence.'
" He was returning, 11th mo. 8th, 1853, in his 83d year, from one of his accustomed visits of love and duty, to relatives an ers d friends in and near Philadelphia, and had reached the house of Noah Rog, Waymart, Wayne Co., in expectation of being at Woodbourne the following day. He spent a cheerful evening, and retired to rest—and to sleep the sleep that knows no waking here." He was buried at Friendsville. "The memory of the just is
'Rest from thine earnest labors,
Rest from thy loved employ,
And with His seal and signet,
Enter thy Master's joy
Through Heaven's uncounted ages,
With love and transport see,
Thy angel-cause advancing
Afar, o'er land and sea.' "
In a short description of Susquehanna Co., given by Enoch Walker in the Register,' published at Montrose, July, 1833, the following large landholders are mentioned : Heirs of Henry Drinker, Dr. R. H. Rose, Caleb Carmalt, S. Milligan, R. Vaux, J. Lee, J. B. Wallace, T. W. Morris, and others, of Philadelphia; S. Meredith, and -- Brownes, of New York. Their lands were then in the care of Judgp Wm. Thompson, and Putman Catlin, Great Bend ; Wm. Jessup, James C. Biddle, Joshua W. Raynsford, Montrose ; Wm. Ward, New Milford ; Wm. D. Cope and Geo. Walker, Woodbourne.
Dr. Rose then had 7000 sheep in the county. Montrose had about 500 inhabitants. The houses were about seventy, including two printing-offices, four taverns, and seven stores.
234 - HISTORY OF SUSQUEHANNA COUNTY.
Thomas P. Cope, father of Wm. D., late of Woodbourne, became a landholder in Susquehanna County at an early period of its settlement, purchasing from Henry Drinker (grandfather of the late H. Drinker, of Montrose), 25,000 acres located in Dimock, Springville, Rush, Auburn, and Jesup townships.
He aided in the construction of the Bridgewater and Wilkes-Barre Turnpike, and was a liberal contributor to the First-day (Sunday) schools of the county.
George Walker, upon coming to Woodbourne, opened a small stock of merchandise in the room now his library and for several years this was the only accommodation of the kind for the people of this vicinity. The post-office then was in the same room. He began his business as surveyor in 1824.
The first merchant at the Corners was Mr. Hicks (previously mentioned), and the next, Richard Stone, 1830-36. His place was purchased by L. H. Woodruff, to whose enterprise the township is indebted for the erection of an academy several years later. He was appointed justice of the peace in 1838, for Springville and Dimock.
After the erection of Dimock township, the post-office, which had been known as "Springville Four Corners," was changed to "Dimock Four Corners," and in January, 1834, John Baker was appointed postmaster in place of Perrin Ross.
Philander Stephens, an early settler of Bridgewater, was identified with the interests of Dimock in his later years, being located on the farm which George W. Lane began to clear in 1808. He was a commissioner and sheriff of the county, and was subsequently chosen representative for Susquehanna and Luzerne Counties in the State Legislature several successive years, where he acquired the reputation of an active and influential member, and was finally twice elected a representative in Congress from this district. His death occurred in July, 1842, in the fifty-fourth year of his age. A. P. Stephens, lately our State representative, is one of his sons.
In 1835, Samuel Barkley was justice of the peace for Dimock. In 1836, the `Register' mentions Julius Beach, as "an enterprising farmer who has done much for the introduction of the mulberry into the county. He presented to the cabinet of the Montrose Lyceum, a skein of beautiful silk (white); the first silk manufactured in the county."
(The morus multicaulis fever was at its height in the county three years later.)
From a newspaper of the period we take the following :—
" Mr. Avery Bolles, of Dimock, in the fall of 1835, procured a kernel of a superior kind of seed wheat, sowed it separately, and in August, 1836, gathered the product and laid it aside. A few days ago he shelled it, counted the kernels, and found them to number 1198."
HISTORY OF SUSQUEHANNA COUNTY - 235
The same year (1835), William Smith, an Englishman, who lived a little north of Dimock Corners, died, aged seventy-six, and was buried in a grove of trees near the turnpike, which have been sacredly preserved to the stranger's memory. It is on the Oliver Scott place which is now owned by L. H. Woodruff.
In 1840, Dimock sustained the school law.
In 1842, the Elk Lake post-office was established seven miles southwest of Montrose; C. J. Lathrop, postmaster ; since which time the two lakes have been more commonly mentioned as one—Elk Lake. The township has several lakes, not half the size of the former, (which covers about 150 acres,) but they add much to the attractiveness of their respective localities. Elk Lake itself has never been sold from the Drinker estate. Young's Pond supplies water for the steam, grist, and saw-mills of Silvanus Tyler.
The mills at Parkevale were built by Hon. B. Parke, at a cost of nearly $30,000. They have all the latest improvements, and it is said they are not surpassed by any flouring mills in this part of the country. The water-power is unfailing. The pond near is supplied with black bass, to the introduction of which into the county, Mr. Parke is giving attention. In the early times there was a beaver-meadow and a deer-lick on the Meshoppen, in the vicinity of the mills.
Dimock Corners is now a village of about eighty inhabitants. It has a Baptist church, two academies, two dry goods stores, a millinery shop, wagon and blacksmith shops, shoemakers'
The Presbyterian church now building (1871), is on land donated by L. H. Woodruff, Esq. The society was organized about fifteen years ago; that of the Baptists, twenty-five years
The township has furnished thirteen physicians; about half the num.ber located in the county.
HON. DAVID WILMOT.
David Wilmot, of Proviso" fame, was born in Bethany, Wayne County, Pennsylvania, and was about eighteen years old when his father, Randall Wilmot, moved into Dimock from Wayne County, about 1832, and located on the top of the hill west of the Corners. The place has since been known as Benjamin MeKeeby's, and is now occupied by the widow of John Sawyer. Here Mr. R. Wilmot kept a store for a time, but afterwards removed to the shore of Elk Lake, where H. Spafford now resides, and eventually left the county.
Young Wilmot evinced a love for reading which craved greater facilities for indulgence than his own limited store of books or that of his neighbors could gratify. Fortunately the library at Woodbourne was open to him, with its many volumes ; among others those written by the peace-loving, slavery-hating, followers of William Penn. Years afterwards, he referred to the
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privilege enjoyed here, as one that influenced his own principles in regard to "human rights," and that indirectly, at least, eventuated in the " Wilmot Proviso."
He spent only his vacations in Dimock, having engaged in the study of law at Wilkes-Barre. He afterwards settled in Towanda, Pennsylvania. Once, while enjoying a vacation sail on Elk Lake, with another youth, he was by some carelessness, dumped' into the lake, and was barely rescued from drowning.
The Bradford Reporter' gave an extended sketch of Mr. Wilmot soon after his decease, from which the following is taken :—
“In 1844, Mr. Wilmot received the unanimous nomination of the Democracy of the Twelfth Congressional District, composed of the counties of Bradford, Tioga, and Susquehanna, and thereafter known as the " Wilmot district." He was chosen by a large majority, and took his seat at the opening of the twenty-ninth Congress, in December, 1845. The annexation of Texas, which Mr. Wilmot, in unison with the Democratic party of the North, had supported, was consummated in 1845, and was speedily followed by war with Mexico. The Wilmot Proviso' provided, that in any territory acquired from Mexico, neither slavery nor involuntary servitude shall ever exist in any part of the territory, except for crime, etc.'
" The slavery question did not enter prominently into the canvass in this Congressional district, in 1846, at the time of Mr. Wilrnot's second election. He received, as usual, the unanimous nomination of his party.
" Having received the nomination at the hands of the Democratic party of the district, in 1850, the pro-slavery branch of the organization set about defeating his return to Congress. Mr. Wilmot at once offered to give way for any person who would represent the principle for which he was contending. Eon. Galusha A. Grow was named by Mr. Wilmot as an acceptable person ; and he was accepted and elected.
" Under the provisions of the amendment to the Constitution making the judiciary of the State elective, Mr. Wilmot was chosen President Judge of the Judicial district composed of the counties of Bradford, Sullivan, and Susquehanna, in 1851. He presided until 1857, when he resigned and became the candidate of the Republican party for Governor, and was beaten by William F. Packer, through the treachery of the Conservative and Know-nothing leaders. He was restored to his place upon the bench by appointment—Judge Bullock having occupied the position—and was again chosen to fill the place at the next election.
* * * * * * * *
" The selection of General Cameron as Secretary of War, by President Lincoln, created a vacancy in the United States Senate, to fill which, Mr. Wilmot was elected and took his seat in that body March 18, 1864. He served two years in the Senate. on the Committee on Foreign Affairs, Claims and Pensions, and was succeeded in 1863 by Mr. Buckalew.
" At the conclusion of his senatorial term he was appointed by President Lincoln a Judge of the Court of Claims, which office he held up to the time of his death."
He died at Towanda, March 16, 1868, aged fifty-four.
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ON petition of Peter Rynearson and others, at the first term of court in Susquehanna County, January, 1813, a view was ordered of that portion of Nicholson separated from Luzerne by the county line, with the intention of erecting it into a township to be called Hillsborough. At April sessions, the same year, Isaac Rynearson and H. Tiffany, Jr., presented the following :—
"We do report that we have layed off that part of Nicholson belonging to Susquehanna County, and a part of Harford township as follows : Beginning where the county line crosses Martin's Creek, it being the southeast corner of that part of Bridgewater belonging to Susquehanna County, then running east on the county line seven miles to the township of Clifford, thence north five miles and three-quarters, thence west six miles and one-quarter to Martin's Creek, thence down said creek to place of beginning."
The court decreed this a township under the name of Lenox. Slight changes have since been made, one of which gives to the present town of Lathrop the territory on which the Delaware, Lackawanna, and Western Railroad is located, except in the extreme northwest corner; and others have taken from Har-ford small portions, making the north line of Lenox more irregular than that of any other township.
Lenox is drained by the Tunkhannock Creek, the main stream of which passes entirely through the township, entering it in the northeast corner from Gibson after having also passed entirely through the latter. The East Branch comes in from Clifford at Lenoxville, near the southeast corner. It runs a little south of-west, and empties into the Tunkhannock at Glenwood. Millard's Brook and Upper and Lower Bell Brooks, with Van Winkle's Branch, are the principal tributaries to the main stream, and those of the East Branch are both numerous and considerable, making Lenox one of the best watered townships in the county. They run among hills beautifully wooded, but not reaching the height of some in Gibson and townships adjoining on the east.
Ponds are numerous but small. The largest is Loomis Lake.
The earliest road was a path up the Tunkhannock, which, taking a straight line, crossed the stream time and again. It was not until January, 1814, that a road was finally granted which, from a point in the north line of Lenox, followed the
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Tunkhannock on the west to the south line, and was continued by Luzerne to the Susquehanna.
In 1821, the Milford and Owego turnpike, passing diagonally across the northeastern portion of Lenox, was completed, and the Philadelphia and Great Bend turnpike commenced. The route of the latter lay through Lenox from north to south, in the eastern part.
In 1797, there were at least four settlers in Lenox. Isaac Rynearson was located on the Tunkhannock, where the turnpikes just mentioned afterwards crossed each other, and where he resided until his death, in 1840, at the age of 82. Solomon Millard was on Millard's Brook, at its junction with the Tunk-hannock ; Isaac Doud was on the East Branch, now Lenoxville ; Jesse Collar, and perhaps two or three of those who settled about 1790 on the Hopbottom (now Brooklyn Township), were within the present limits of Lenox.
Mark Hartley, Sr., who had been induced by John Nicholson to join the Hopbottom settlement, May, 1792, removed in 1797 to the farm now occupied by his son, ,William Hartley, Esq., the latter being then five years of age, and Mark Hartley, Jr., but two years younger. The latter died October 12, 1869. The township of Nicholson at that time covered one-quarter of the area afterwards allotted to Susquehanna County, besides twenty square miles (1 x 20) below. In 1798, its office-holders resided in widely-separated sections of it, including a Thatcher and Tiffany (from present town of Harford); Potter (from Gibson); Sweet (Herrick); Bartlett and Stevens (now Wyoming County), and Solomon Millard. A year or two later, in addition to some of these, Abel Kent, Asahel Gregory, and Walter Lyon (from what is now Herrick).
In 1798, immense numbers of pigeons encamped along the hills of the Tunkhannock in this section. The circumstance was so remarkable it was remembered and mentioned by Mr. John Doud, sixty years after, at the Pioneer Festival at Montrose, in 1858, though he was but a boy when it occurred.
In 1799, a road was ordered from Robert Corbett's (now Phinney's, New Milford) to Solomon Millard's, Nicholson.
In 1800, Thomas Tiffany and John Marcy were justices of the peace for the township, and in 1801 Ebenezer Stevens was added. He and J. Marcy lived below the line of Susquehanna County as afterwards run.
In the latter year, the number assessed was 132; Asahel Gregory, assessor; John Tyler, assistant.
People then carried their grain to Wilkes-Barre in canoes, and made most of their purchases there. "On their way they were accustomed to blow a horn when nearing each habitation,
HISTORY OF SUSQUEHANNA COUNTY - 239
that persons desiring groceries, etc., might come to the bank and deliver their orders, which would be attended to, and purchases made by the obliging neighbor and voyager, who announced his return from Wilkes-Barre with the purchases by another blast of .his horn. In returning, the canoe was propelled almost the entire length of the Tunkhannock Creek by pushing."
Corn was chiefly pounded in mortars, some of which were hollowed stumps; others were found in rocks, and supposed to have been excavated by the Indians. Pestles of their manufacture, as also arrow-heads and hatchets, were found in the vicinity of Glenwood.
The elections for the district of which this section was then a part were held at a point on the Susquehanna River five miles below Tunkhannock, where Isaac Osterhout (father of our late State Senator), kept a hotel or store.
One pound of maple sugar, then worth twelve cents, could be exchanged at Tunkhannock for four shad, so abundant were they then in the river, though never found at T. now. Persons often suffered from hunger, and children were sometimes seen crying for food. The principal articles of diet were corn mush, and bread made of corn meal, milk, butter, and potatoes; fried doughnuts as a Christmas luxury; pork rarely obtainable, but venison, bear-meat, and wild turkeys in their season abundant, as also many varieties of fishes; speckled trout in all the streams, and some of them very large. In spring, there was little to eat except porridge made of maple-sap and corn meal, and sometimes Johnny-cake, though the latter, sweetened and shortened, was a dish for guests.
One woman, the mother of numerous children who sometimes begged her to give them something different from their usual fare (plain Johnny-cake), used to promise them "Jimmy-cake." It differed from their customary bread in name alone, but imagination rendered it a satisfactory dish.
John Robinson, an Irishman, came to the neighborhood from the Hopbottom. His children of the third and fourth generation now reside in the township.
Before 1808, Nicholson had been so reduced by the erection of Bridgewater, Clifford, and Harford townships, that only twenty-three families were left in it, and of these only a few were in the section since named Lencoc. They were principally the Rynearsons, Millards, Douds, Bells, Halsteads, and Hartleys.
In 1813, the elections of the township were held with those of Harford, at the house of H. Tiffany. There were then twenty-eight taxables resident ill, Lenox. The houses were only twenty, the horses thirteen, cows thirty-eight, and the oxen twenty-three. There were in all but three hundred and forty acres of
240 - HISTORY OF SUSQUEHANNA COUNTY.
improved land. The largest tax-payers (actual settlers), were: Solomon Millard, who had a saw-mill; the widow of Mark Hartley, Sr.; Ebenezer Bartlett (not taxed in Susquehanna County the following year); I. Rynearson, Benj. Rider (removed five years later); Michael Halstead, Rollin and Calvin Bell. The highest valuation of property in any of these instances was little over $1000, and ranged down to $300. Isaac Doud had a grist-mill. The holders of the unseated land of the township were: John Field, Samuel Meredith, Abraham Hutchins; Ebenezer Parish, James Barnes, Samuel W. Fisher, Zaccheus Collins, Thomas Stewardson,¹ Donald and C. Bell. Within two years the purchasers of land had increased, and, among actual settlers, were : Amos Payne, Richard McNamara, William Buchannon, John Conrad, Nathan Tiffany (died 1828), and Asaph Fuller. A number of the sons of the first settlers came of age about this time, and appear on the tax-list. Among these were: William Hartley, Okey Rynearson, Henry Millard, James Robinson, Isaiah Halstead ; and, a little later, Mark Hartley, Jr., John Doud, Aaron Rynearson, and Jacob
In 1817, Sol. Millard erected his grist-mill on the Tunkhan-nock. His saw mill, distillery, and blacksmith shop were on what has long been called Millard's Brook.
Before December, 1818, the number of houses had doubled, lacking one. The " unseated land" owners included the names of several residents of Montrose, viz.: I. Post, A. Howell, H. Drinker, A. H. Read, and N. Raynor, who became owners, probably, by payment of taxes. Among settlers were : Nathaniel Truesdell, Orange Whitney (removed in 1827), Oliver Weth-erby, and Charles Webster.
In 1818, elections for Lenox and Harford were held at the house of Jacob Blake, in Harford.
In 1820, William Hartley was town clerk.
During the next five years about twenty taxables appear to have been added to the settlement.
In 1825, Benajah Millard had possession of his father's mills, Dut removed within a few years, selling out to James Coil, who n. 1830 paid the highest tax levied on a resident. A third mst-mill (Truesdell's) accommodated the people in 1825, and Arm. Hartley had a saw-mill.
Luther Loomis settled about this time near the lake that bears its name, and of which the outlet is Millard's Brook. Soon fter, John Bailey, a wagon-maker, and Nathaniel and Rial rower, Rhodes Berry, and Nathan Foot were here. Allen M’Donald had a grist-mill prior to 1827. Nathaniel Tower was
¹ One of the executors of Henry Drinker, the elder.
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a Revolutionary soldier and pensioner; he died in 1836, aged eighty-eight.
In 1827 Asa Dimock came to Lenox, from Dundaff, to which place he had removed from what is now Herrick, on the Great Bend and Coshecton turnpike, in 1818 ; having settled in that vicinity in 1807.
He had been one of the original trustees or commissioners of Susquehanna County, appointed by the Assembly of Pennsylvania, and had ever been an active man in affairs connected with township or county. His son Shubael, now a resident of Avoca, Wis , accompanied him to Lenox.
At this time the township was strongly democratic in politics. During one of the campaigns in which Andrew Jackson was a candidate for the presidency, the Lenox election was held at his house, when he gave notice that be had a keg of whiskey which he would open for those in attendance after the election, provided no vote was cast against Jackson. Either all the voters were democrats, or the temptation was too strong for their principles ; for Jackson received every vote, and the whiskey was opened.
His sons were: Asa, Jr., Shubael, and Warren. A daughter (Mrs. Rhodes Berry) died in 1871, aged nearly seventy-two. He died in Lenox late in 1833,aged sixty-two.
Prior to December, 1828, Wm. Jackson had a store and tavern at Lenox Corners, or the Junction, as it is sometimes termed. Chas. Chandler, Jr., came from Gibson. Benajah Millard also kept tavern a short time. Chas. H. Miller had "a stand" in 1831. William Hartley's tax was the largest of any in 1832.
In 1833 there were just four times as many houses in Lenox as there were twenty years earlier, and there were over one thousand acres of improved land.
About this time Okey Rynearson kept a tavern ; Woodbury S. Wilbur purchased from James Coil, Jr., the old mills of Solomon Millard; the old farm of the latter was purchased in 1834 by Mrs. Elizabeth Grow and sons.
Charles Chandler, Jr., and William Hartley were appointed justices of the peace about this time. The former was afterwards elected State representative for this county, and died at Harrisburg, of smallpox, during the session of legislature in the spring of 1840.
In 1842 C. W. Conrad began blacksmithing in the building that was formerly Charles Miller's old barn. At first people furnished their own iron for horse-shoes, or whatever they wished made at his shop, and paid him in produce. Oats he received at eighteen cents per bushel, but to find a market for them he had to hire a team and go to Carbondale, where he sold
- 16 -
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them at an advance of two cents on the bushel, and was glad enough to convert them into cash at that price. From this small beginning his establishment came to be the most extensive of its kind in the county, through the business furnished him by George H. Giddings,¹ who required mule-shoes for the mail-route across Texas to El Paso, of which he was the contractor; and by the well-known Ben Holliday, on the great overland route to California.
Hand-power gave place to steam ; and to wooden turning-lathes were added engine lathes for finishing machinery. The capital invested was not less than $6000 before the fire which consumed the shop and contents, together with barn and wagon-shop adjoining, on the night of June 28, 1869. In the autumn of the same year they were rebuilt on a larger scale than before the fire.
The Glenwood hotel was built in 1850 by the Grow brothers, who sold it to A. F. Snover, its proprietor for a long time, who was succeeded by V. Cafferty. This building was burned March 18, 1870. It was an inviting retreat for summer wanderers in search of comfort and rest. A pleasant glen, indeed, they found it—shut in by the high green hills that cast their shadows on the Tunkhannock, which at this point is spanned by a bridge. A little above is "Croquet" Island. Fine trout are, or were, found in this vicinity.
The former pleasant residence of Wm. Hartley, Esq., about a quarter of a mile above, was just within sight, on the point of land formed by the junction of the east branch with the main stream, but fire laid this low some years ago.
In the other direction in the seeming northern limit of the glen is the "old homestead" of the Grows, a part of which, in the early settlement of the town, was the home of Solomon Millard. Opposite is the post-office now in charge of E. R. Grow. It was established in 1835, under the name of Millarcisville, Woodbury S. Wilbur, postmaster.
A little lower the "Glenwood mills" are seen, a rebuild by F. P. Grow, of Millard's grist-mill, and the new residence of F. P. Grow, having in its rear the remains of the old tavern of Charles Miller, which had the unique sign of "LIVE AND LET LIVE."
In 1834 Charles Chandler's was the only painted house in all Lenox. A year or two later, Mr. Hartley erected the house mentioned above, and painted it.
The tannery of Schultz, Eaton & Co. was erected at Glenwood the same year as the hotel, at a cost of $60,000. This was destroyed by fire and rebuilt in 1857. It turns out 40,000 sides
¹ A native of Susquehanna County, and a son of the late James Giddings of Herrick.
HISTORY OF SUSQUEHANNA COUNTY - 243
of leather per year. Its present proprietors are Black, Burhaus & Clearwater.
Asa Eaton, one of the original firm, united seemingly diverse tastes, the one inducing him in 1856 to erect a church, and the other in 1858 to provide a race-course for his own and others' enjoyment. Fast horses were his recreation, and before the "course" was laid out he had cleared the highway for the distance of a mile (between the tannery and the hotel), of every stone or unevenness that could retard a horse's speed or lessen the comfort of a rider. In the fall of 1864 he conceived the idea of assembling the fast horses and fine riders of the county to try the race-course on his beautiful flat by the margin of the Tunkhannock. The occasion was also dignified by the inauguration of the Glenwood Fair, which was under the management of an agricultural society of which F. P. Grow was president and Asa Eaton treasurer. The fair was held in October three years in succession, when it was superseded by the one at Nicholson, five miles below.
Lenox has had two public libraries (miscellaneous), one of which is still in existence in West Lenox; the other, at Glenwood, has been for several years among the things that were. During the war the township and Soldiers' Aid Society contributed nobly of men and means to preserve the Union.
The township continued strongly democratic until the excitement occasioned by the "Kansas-Nebraska Bill." In the fall of 1856 a majority of votes against the democratic ticket was cast for the first time. A banner was presented to Lenox by the ladies of Montrose, as a prize to the township which gave the greatest increase of republican votes at the November election over the election of the previous month.
SCHOOLS AND CHURCHES.
The first school in the vicinity of Glenwood, and probably in all Lenox, was taught about 1804 by Miss Molly Post, in a barn belonging to John Marcy,' whose farm was partly in Susquehanna County, though his residence was just below the line, in Luzerne, now Wyoming County. The barn was soon needed to store the hay of that season, and then a large tree was selected as a shelter for the scholars and teacher till the close of the term.
It was in one of her schools that a boy showed his intelligent comprehension of the word " bed." On being told to spell it, he began : " B-ah, e-ah, d-ah," and, being unable to pronounce it, His farm was the first below the Glenwood hotel property. Mr. Marcy was from Tunkhannock, and originally from Dutchess County, N. Y. He wa3 father-in-law of William Hartley, Esq.
244 - HISTORY OF SUSQUEHANNA COUNTY.
his teacher, thinking to aid him, asked what he slept on ; when he replied, " Now I know 1 sheepskin."
The first winter school which can be recalled by one of Lenox's oldest residents, was taught by a man who was unable to prove a sum in addition ; he was discharged, and another employed who finished the term, but was then obliged to engage the services of one of his pupils to write his bill for teaching, being incompetent to do it himself.
Barns were also used as places for public worship. Schoolhouses were afterwards, and for a long time, considered fitting temples for praise as well as learning. But these, until within a very few years, were poor at best. At present some ambition to improve in his direction is apparent.
But churches have supplanted their use as houses of worship. At Lenoxville there is a Methodist church. There is a Baptist church at " Tower's settlement," another at Loomis' Lake, and still another, built by Mr. Asa Eaton, near the tannery. In all but the latter, religious societies are regularly organized. Mr. Eaton, himself a Baptist, built the church when there were none in the vicinity to join him, making it free to all denominations. It is private property, and the use of it is granted to the Good Templars, and for lectures, etc. The first Baptist Society was recognized by the Abington Baptist Association, December, 1830. Levi M. Mack was the pastor in 1831, and possibly the year previous. Rev. Charles Miller, of Clifford, occasionally preached for them. Mr. George W. Schofield was "supply"for a time, or until Deacon Rial Tower was licensed, and in 1844 ordained pastor.
There are three Good Templars' lodges in the township—one at Glenwood, one at Lenoxville, and the other at West Lenox ; and together they have had about 250 members. The number is now somewhat diminished.
The Sons of Temperance had formerly a division in Lenox.
Sabbath-schools have been held at different times in Glenwood under various superintendents. One was conducted by Obadiah Mills and family in his own house with success. The present school was begun in 1860 by Mrs. Fred. P. Grow with five pupils, in her own room, while a boarder at the hotel in Glenwood.
The highest number in attendance since then has been 125, and there are now several assistant teachers, the, school being held in a neat chapel which Mr. Grow has prepared expressly for this purpose. He took for a nucleus the old district schoolhouse in which his brother, the Hon. G. A. Grow, first exercised his talent for debate. In addition of 20 feet to the length of the building has been made, but the original floor-boards, scoured to a becoming whiteness, retain their places; while the
HISTORY OF SUSQUEHANNA COUNTY - 245
boards with which it was ceiled are converted into comfortable seats. Plaster and paint inside, and paint and shutters outside may partly disguise the old structure, but they give it a fittin dress for its new and sacred use.
Of the success of the superintendent in gaining the confidence of the parents whose children are her pupils, an anecdote is told which will bear repeating. A man who had been greatly opposed to having his children attend the school, became con winced at last of the benefit they had derived from it. Aroused to a sense of gratitude, before leaving the place he resortec to Mrs. G. to express it, which he did by saying, "It's the d-dest best Sunday-school I ever see !"
One of Miss N. G.'s class was not the dullest pupil, though from his familiarity with his father's mill he drew his owr inference when his teacher told him he was " made of dust.” The next Sabbath, when he was asked the question, " Of what are you made?" he promply replied, "of saw-dust!"
Miss Carrie Hartley, a former pupil and teacher in this school was for two years a missionary in Madura, India.
HON. G. A. GROW.
Galusha A. Grow was born in Ashford, now Eastford, Windham County Conn., and in May 1834, at the age of ten years, came from Voluntown of th, same county, to Susquehanna County, Penna., with his widowed mother, Mrs Elizabeth Grow. Her husband, Mr. Joseph Grow, had died some years pre vious, leaving her with six children—the oldest a daughter but fourteen year: old, and the youngest a babe, also a daughter; her four sons, Edwin. Fred erick, Samuel, and Galusha, were between them in age, in the order of thei names as here given. Mrs. Grow brought to Susquehanna County only he oldest son, the youngest daughter, and Galusha. Her eldest daughter, thet recently married, was going to meet her husband who had bought land it Luzerne County just below Dundaff. They were accompanied by Samuel A Newton, who afterwards bought in Brooklyn. and Charles Barstow, whc bought the hotel and farm at Crystal Lake. Mrs. Grow bought the farm it Lenox formerly owned by Solomon Millard. The laud was then in a pool state of cultivation, and the whole 440 acres were obtained for $1300. A yoke of oxen and one cow constituted the stock on the farm that year, and a field of oats and a few acres of corn were the result of the united labors of Edwin and the oxen driven by Galusha. The pigeons that year rested or Elk Hill, ¹ and were very destructive to the farmers' oats and corn. As Galusha was then too young to work, he was assigned a post upon the ridge of a barn, which then stood between the corn-field and the oats, that he might with two small sticks rattle upon the roof and scare off the pigeons. So he spent the days, after the corn came up till it was too large for the pigeons tc disturb. He was obliged to be up early in the morning, and to carry hit dinner with him, as the pigeons were so numerous they would destroy a whole field in a very short time. Imagination sees the embryo Speaker of Congress perched on that barn-roof no "less happy and no less dignified—since his pose
¹ The Volunteer of that season had a paragraph respecting the eastern part o. the county " Nine miles in length and two in width—every foot of which, and almost every tree and branch of which, are occupied by pigeons."
The beech-uuts were the attraction.
246 - HISTORY OF SUSQUEHANNA COUNTY.
was one of essential service—than in the palmy days when he occupied the third seat. in the nation.
The children had been scattered among relatives after the death of their father until Mrs. Grow's residence at Lenox ; but here they were all eventually gathered in one family, and remained such for years after attaining their majority and engaging in business. The mother died in 1864, and is remembered by her neighbors as a woman of uncommon worth, and deserving of more than an ordinary tribute.
During the winter of 1836-'37, and that of '37-'38, Galusha was at school in the old school-house, which has recently been converted into a neat chapel for the use of Mrs. F. P. Grow's Sabbath-school. In that building there was then occasionally an old-fashioned spelling-school—" dhoosing sides " between the scholars and those of the next district, which extended as far down as Bacon's. Here, too, when he was not yet fourteen years old, he took an active part in the Debating Society, which was held alternately in each of those districts, for which he prepared himself on his walks twice a day to and from foddering cattle, about one mile from the house.
Assisting his brother in the small country store originally established by Mrs. Grow's energy, on the present site of the Glenwood post-office, and accompanying him in the spring in rafting lumber down the Susquehanna to Port Deposit, Md., Galusha found occupation for seasons when not in school until he entered Franklin Academy at Harford. in the spring of 1838. He and his younger sister Elizabeth (afterwards the wife of Hon. J. Everett Streeter) then had rooms a mile from the academy at Mrs. Farrar's, where they boarded themselves ; but the winter following, his sister not being with him, he roomed in the Institution, and boarded. as one of a club, with Mrs. Walker, mother of the present Governor of Virginia.
Preston Richardson was then Principal, but at his death, soon after, the Rev. Willard Richardson succeeded him. and was Mr. Grow's teacher until he left, in 1840, for Amherst College. His first political speech was made in his senior year at Amherst, in 1844. He graduated as stated in the 'Men of Our Day,' "with high honors in his class, and with the reputation of being a ready debater, and a fine extemporaneous speaker." He commenced studying law with Hon. F. B. Streeter in the winter of 1845, and -was admitted to the bar of Susquehanna County April 19th, 1847.
He was law-partner of Hon. David Wilmot at Towanda, 1848-49 ; but his health then demanding a resort to out-door pursuits, he spirit some time in surveying, peeling bark, working on the farm, etc. In the fall of 1850 he received the unanimous nomination for the State Legislature by the Democratic Convention of the county, which he declined.
The same season, the.Hon. David Wilmot withdrew as a candidate for Congress in the 12th District, with the understanding that the free-soil party would support Mr. Grow, hitherto unknown outside of the county. The result was the election of Mr. Grow, just one week after his nomination, by a majority of 1264 over the Republican candidate, John C. Adams, of Bradford. He took his seat December, 1851, at the time but 26 years old—the youngest member of Congress.
In 1852 his majority was 7500, and at the next election the vote was unanimous, owing to his opposition to the Kansas-Nebraska bill. From the date of the repeal of the Missouri Compromise, Mr. Grow severed his connection with the Democratic party; still he continued to represent the Wilmot District until the 4th of March, 1863 His defeat at the election the previous fall was owing to the Congressional apportionment which united Susquehanna County with Luzerne, thus giving a preponderating Democratic vote.
Mr. Grow's " maiden speech" in Congress was reported as among the ablest speeches in behalf of the Homestead Bill—a measure he persistently brought forward every Congress for ten years, when he had at last the satisfaction of signing the law as Speaker of the House of Representatives.
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His passage-at-arms with Keitt, of South Carolina, is yet fresh in the minds of many. as a timely and appropriate answer to former Southern insolence.
July 4th, 1864, he was elected Speaker of the House of Representatives, and " at the close of his term received a UNANIMOUS vote of thanks, which was the first unanimous vote that had been given by that body to any Speaker in many years."
He was drafted under the first draft, and, although exempted by the board of examination as unfit for military duty, he still furnished a substitute.
Mr. Grow's public career has been admirably summed up in The Men of Our Day,' as " marked by a persistent advocacy of free homesteads, free territory, human freedom, cheap postage, and indeed every measure by which the people were to be made wiser, purer, and happier."
In 1868, the popular voice in Northern Pennsylvania, and most of the Republican press of the State, proposed Mr. Grow as successor to Mr. Bucka-lew in the U. S. Senate, and by many " his nomination as the Republican candidate for Governor would be accepted with great cordiality and enthusiasm."
Mr. Grow is now (1872) at the South, and President of the Houston and Great Northern Railroad of Texas.
No man of Susquehanna County has ever been so widely known to statesmen at home and abroad ; nor is it probable that, very soon, any combination of circumstances will place another of our citizens more prominently before the public.
For the following list of trees, shrubs, and plants found in Lenox, with other items, the compiler is indebted to a lady of the township:—
Among trees are found the beech ; birch (black and yellow); basswood (the American lime or linden); butternut, or white walnut ; button-wood, or American plane-tree; chestnut; cherry (black, choke, and red) ; the slippery elm ; hemlock ; hickory (bitter-nut and small-fruited); iron-wood ; maple (hard and soft); oak (black and white) ; pine (white); white poplar, or American aspen ; sumach (smooth and poison) ; tulip-tree, or whitewood ; willow ; witch-hazel ; and walnut.
Among shrubs and plants, the mountain currant ; cranberry ; dogwood ; elder (common and panicled) ; frost-grape ; gooseberry ; hazel ; mountain-laurel; American rose-bay ; raspberry (red and black); wild rose ; sarsaparilla ; sassafras ; scouring-rush ; thorn ; thistle (Canada and common); whortleberry ; trailing arbutus ; anemone ; spring-beauty ; pink azalea, or May-apple ; adder's tongue ; artichoke; bloodroot ; boneset ; blue-flag; blue-eyed grass ; bulrushes ; butter-cup ; burdock ; cat-tail ; catnip ; celandine ; checkerberry, or wintergreen ; chickweed; white clover ; several varieties of club-moss ; comfrey ; cotton-thistle; cowslip ' • crane's-bill ; cut-grass ; red columbine ; dandelion ; ox-eyed daisy ; yellow dock ; dodder; " Dutchman's breeches" ; several varieties of ferns, among them the maiden's hair, and walking fern; golden-rod ; goldthread; Indian-pipe; June-berrys, lilies (meadow, white pond and yellow pond) ; live-forever ; high and low mallows ; milk-weed ; mullein; many varieties of moss ; stinging nettle ; wild parsnip ; partridge-berry ; pennyroyal ; peppermint pickerel-weed ; common plaintain ; poison-ivy ; poke ; prince's pine; purslain ; fringed polygala; Solomon's seal (one variety) ; sidesaddle flower ; varieties of sorrel ; spearmint ; strawberry ; tansey ; trillium (white, pink, and dull red); violets (deep and light blue, and white) ; watercress.
The farms of this township produce wheat of excellent quality on the high grounds; with oats, corn, potatoes, rye, buckwheat, and clover. Of fruit there are apples, pears, quinces, grapes, and peaches, though the latter are of a very poor quality, and not abundant. In seasons of unusual length. dryness, and heat, sweet potatoes of very excellent quality have been grown in the valleys of Lenox.
248 - HISTORY OF SUSQUEHANNA COUNTY.
In early times raccoons were more numerous than animals of any other kind ; but deer, black bears, and wolves were here in great numbers. There were also panthers, wildcats, beavers, skunks, woodchucks, squirrels (black, red, gray, and chipmunks) ; mink, muskrats, marten, etc. As late as December, 1869, a wildcat was shot in Lenox. Driven by dogs, it had taken shelter in a tree.
Bee-trees were of great value ; and perhaps few were more profitable than one recently found in the township, from which was taken 256.lbs. of honey.
WHEN Susquehanna County was set off from Luzerne by act of legislature in 1810, the southern line divided the township of Braintrim, and by decree of court, April, 1814, the portion above the line—about six miles by eight—received the name of Auburn. This name had been given by Connecticut surveyors to a section including part of this township, while on Pennsylvania records it had until this time only the former. With the exception of Great Bend it is the only township of our county which retains its original dimensions.
It is bounded on the north by the township of Rush, on the east by Dimock and Springville, on the south by the county of Wyoming, and on the west by that of Bradford, thus being the southwestern township of Susquehanna County.
The Susquehanna River comes at one point within two and a half miles of its southern border.
Tuscarora Creek runs four and a half miles across the northwestern part of Auburn. The Pochuck in the western, the Little Meshoppen near the center, and the west branch of the Meshoppen (Riley Creek), have their sources within the township. The middle branch of the Meshoppen crosses the southeast corner. The Little Meshoppen unites with the main stream a few rods from its mouth.
The lakes of Auburn are few and small, none larger than ordinary mill-ponds, except the one crossed by the northern line of the township, Kinney's Pond, which is one mile in length and from one-quarter to one-half mile in width.
The general surface is rolling or hilly, but nearly every acre is tillable. The soil is a clayey loam.
There are various stone-quarries in the township. The strata of a quarry about half a mile south of Auburn Corners are from half an inch to several inches in thickness, without the dip so common to the rocks of this region, but horizontal, with the
HISTORY OF SUSQUEHANNA COUNTY - 249
appearance of having been deposited in quiet waters, and not disturbed by any subsequent upheaval. Marine shells are occasionally found imbedded between the layers, also vegetable remains or their impressions.¹ Stone has been drawn from this quarry for building purposes, both to Wilkes-Barre and Montrose, though in the latter case it might appear like " taking coals to Newcastle."
The township has four post-offices, viz., Auburn Four Corners, Auburn Center, South Auburn, and West Auburn, or New Laceyville, and these points are so many centers of business, the last mentioned being the portion of the township first settled. This was in the vicinity of the upper branch of the Tuscarora Creek, which rises in Kinney's Pond.
In 1797, Lyman Kinney, from Litchfield County, Conn., made a clearing on the place now owned by Hamlet Hill ; it was then a part of the 3000 acres which his father Daniel had bought under a Connecticut title. As this proved defective, Lyman, prior to 1814, sold his improvements to John and Thomas Morley, and left. The Pennsylvania title was held by Henry Drinker, of Philadelphia, who transferred it to Thos. P. Cope, of the same city.
Lloyd Goodsell, it is asserted, was the first settler in East Auburn ; his location is now occupied by Frederick Russell. His wife was a daughter of Isaac Bronson, of Rush.
Myron Kasson has been supposed by some to be the " first to attack the unbroken forest of Auburn, lying out in the woods at night, not knowing of a human being within ten miles of him." Mr. Miner mentions both in his list of the settlers here in 1799. Both left for the East in the fall.
Ezekiel Avery, in 1800, came from Connecticut with Benajah Frink, then single, and made a clearing northwest of the corners (where Mr. Linaberry now lives), and was the first who wintered in Auburn. His wife the next spring brought in the family ; on the journey one of the horses was lost, and they had to diminish their means of support by the purchase of another. His sons were David and George.
William Frink, father of Benajah, came this year, and began a clearing on the hill between the latter and Mr. Avery, and afterwards located here with his family. He died about 1829. His son William was but a lad when he came to Auburn.
Benajah Frink built the first frame house upon the site of the one now occupied by Mrs. Jacob Titman ; he also built the first
¹ A variety of these, as also of Indian relics found in the vicinity, are now in the possession of J. B. Beardsley.