PLUNKETT’S CREEK TOWNSHIP.
THIS township embraces an extremely wild and mountainous district in the eastern part of the county. At December sessions, 1836, a petition signed by divers inhabitants of Davidson (now in Sullivan county) and Franklin townships was presented to the court, praying for a new township to be "set off," because they had to travel from twelve to sixteen miles to attend the elections, and the distance was too great. The court appointed Henry Lenhart, Joseph Whitacre, and John Elliot, as viewers, but from some cause they did not attend to the duties of their appointment. At the next session of the court William Wilson, Apollos Woodward, and William F. Packer were appointed to make the division. Packer and Wilson rode up Loyalsock and stopped at the house of John Barbour, living near the mouth of Bear creek, and opposite the mouth of Plunkett's creek. At his house they decided to make the division without surveying the lines that is, by following certain tract lines. When they had finished their work Mr. Wilson proposed to call the new township Plunkett, but Barbour objected to the name, saying that "Plunkett was an old story." During the Revolution he had remained passive and was more than once suspected of disloyalty. Packer then proposed to add the word "creek," to which Wilson consented and Barbour did not object. Hence it was so named, and became a township by decree of court in 1838.
Col. William Plunkett was a physician by profession and bad taken an active part against the Indians in colonial times. He was often called on to dress scalped heads and other wounds of the settlers, and was a valuable man in the settlement. When Northumberland county was erected lie was chosen president judge. In consideration of his valuable services during the Indian wars, the Pennsylvania authorities rewarded him by the grant of six tracts of land containing 1,978 acres. The warrants for these lands bear date November 14, 1776, and were issued in the names of William Plunkett, Benjamin Rush, Jacob Rush, William Ramsey, Samuel Finley, and Andrew Todd. They were surveyed in September, 1783. The survey commenced on Loyalsock creek just below the mouth of Bear creek, and extended up the creek on both sides to the upper end of Lewis's bottom, or a mile below the month of Ogdon creek. Plunkett being the owner of the land covering the month of the creek, his name was given to it and it is thus perpetuated, for ho memorial stone marks his grave at Sunbury, where he died in 1791, at the great age of about one hundred years, totally blind, and almost forgotten. The township is typical of the man rough and rugged. From his autograph, now in the possession of the writer, he signed his name with one t, but custom and the courts have long since been in the habit of spelling it with two tt's.
The township is the fifteenth in size and has an area of 17,600 acres, with a popu-lation of 777 by the census of 1890. It is bounded on the east by Sullivan county, on the north and west by Cascade, and on the south by Upper Fairfield, Muncy, Wolf, and Shrewsbury townships. It is very irregular in shape and it is hard to define its geological characteristics in detail. The Red Catskill (No. IX) makes up the valley of Plunkett's creek, the mountain plateau, and the valley at the head of its smaller tributaries. The same may be said of the valley of the main Loyalsock and Big Bear creek, all of which contain some good agricultural land; while on the other side of the Loyalsock, formations (Nos, X, XI, and XII) form high mountains, on the crests of which the lower productive coal measures (No. XIII) may be found in areas undetermined, at an elevation of 2,000 feet above tide. Formation (No. X), being from. 4,200 to 1,600 feet above tide, contains the false coal measures, which, on outcrops, show small beds of coal, while above this occur the Mauch Chunk (umbral) red shales (No. X1 a), in quite a wide bench.
Immediately above the mountain limestone (No. XI b) is observed about sixty to eighty feet thick, forming a bold cliff and outcropping at intervals for a distance of a mile or more. The umbral (No. XI) iron ores are found in surface specimens weighing from ten to sixty pounds, of a good quality. Good building and flagstone are abundant, and fire clays and mineral paints are likely to be found.
Glacial drift is abundant and quite prominent terraces occur along the creek, one of which is from forty to sixty feet high. The surface is very irregular, the greater portion being mountainous; while to the east of the creek, near Barbour's, is a singularly elevated, round topped hill, in the center of the Devonian valley, looking as if it had been thrown up by some great disturbance of the earth's surf ace. The township forms part of the south escarpment of the main Allegheny range.
Loyalsock creek, one branch of which heads at Dushore and the other at Lopez, runs through the township and then washes its western boundary for some distance. Its principal tributaries are Big and Little Bear creeks on the east, and Plunkett's creek on the northwest, besides a number of smaller streams.
There is a large cranberry swamp in this township, and the line separating Sullivan county from Lycoming passes through it. Capt. Thomas Lloyd, of Muncy, the well known surveyor, has run lines through it.
Pioneers. - Among the first settlers may be mentioned Louis Donelly, in 1818, near the mouth of Bear creek; Charles Smith, and a man named Payne. The first settlers here found the cabin of a man named Paulhamus, who had squatted there some time between 1770 and 1776. He lived the life of a hermit, cleared a few acres of ground, and subsisted on what vegetables be could raise and game he could kill. The place where he settled is now included in the farm of James Warn. He was undoubtedly the first man to settle in that region. Tradition says that he was a deserter from the British army, and that he was finally captured and returned to service. At all events he suddenly disappeared and never was heard of again.
Industries. - There is no grist mill within the bounds of the township. Lumbering has been the principal business for many years. Following are the saw mills: Weaver & Company, steam mill, at the mouth of Little Bear creek; Thomas Blair, portable mill, located on the cove; Julius Lewis, water mill, located half a mile below Bear creek, on Loyalsock; John Scaife, water mill, one mile and a half below Sandy bottom, on Loyalsock; John Day, water mill, one mile tip Big Bear creek; N. C. Johnson, water mill, one-half mile above John Day's, on Big Bear creek; Watson heirs, water mill, four miles above N. C. Johnson, on Big Bear creek; William Hayes, water mill, two miles up Little Bear creek; S. B. Porter, steam mill, half a mile from the mouth of Plunkett's creek; Wilson Novel, steam mill, four miles up Plunkett's creek.
The Rogers Woolen Mill, three miles up Big Bear creek, was an old plant. It was owned and run by Ira J. Parker, of Penn's Dale, until December 11, 1891, when it was destroyed by fire.
Thomas E. Proctor erected a large tannery at Proctorville in 1868. It is well supplied with all the necessary machinery, vats, dry houses, sweat houses, bark mills, engine house, etc., for carrying on a very extensive business, and, together with men in the woods, gives employment to several hundred hands.
Barbour's Mills. - John Barbour, a Scotchman, was an early settler. He owned a large amount of land. The first mill in the township was built by him opposite the mouth of Plunkett's creek in 1832 for the manufacture of lumber. He was a public spirited citizen and built a school house at the mouth of Bear creek, which he donated to the township. His name is perpetuated in the little town of Barbour's Mills, situated between the mouth of Plunkett's and Bear creeks. It contains a temperance hotel, a store, and blacksmith shop. The hotel used to be kept by M. D. Wells, and for a long time it was a popular stopping place for fishermen and hunters. A postoffice called Barbour's Mills was established July 19, 1839, and John Barbour was appointed postmaster. He kept the office until June 4, 18621, a period of over twenty-three years, when he was succeeded by John Harkins. The line of succession has been as follows: Bethuel Diggin, appointed June 2, 1864; Iddings Emick, July 1, 1864; Moseley D. Wells, March 24, 1865; Mary J. Fetterman, June 27, 1881; John E. Barbour, September 21, 1885; Calvin B. Barbour, September 20, 1886. He is the present incumbent.
Proctorville comprises the Proctor tannery, two stores, two blacksmith shops, one wagon shop, and a number of dwelling houses. The postoffice was established January 20, 1885, and called Proctor. Plunket W. Novel was made postmaster. His successors have been John F. Bloomer, appointed August 17, 1888, and Priscilla Bryinton, April 24, 1890, present incumbent.
Fishing Clubs. - Plunkett's Creek township, on account of its dashing mountain streams of pure water, has always been a favorite place for trout fishing, and today. there are three companies that have chartered rights on two of its streams for the, propagation and protection of fish, and game. These companies have dams to prevent their fish from escaping and watchmen to guard them against poachers. They also have cottages, comfortably fitted up and furnished, where they can spend the time pleasantly in warm weather.
The Ben Lomond Fish and Game Club, West Bear creek, was incorporated June 7, 1886, with the following members: Henry Rawle, Charles Rawle, John H. Watson, and F. E. Gleim.
The Big Bear Creek Fishing Club was incorporated July 7, 1887, with the following members: Thomas Millspaugh, John H. Millspaugh, Nelson Hughes, John M. Dean, and Clinton Lloyd. Samuel Campbell and wife, through whose land tile creek runs where their fishing grounds are, gave them the right, by deed, to use the premises, July 15, 1887.
The Dunwoody Fish and Game Club, on Big Bear creek, was chartered June 5, 1891, with the following members: George H. Rogers, Samuel Rogers, G. L. Stearns, J. A. Stearns, J. W. Hays, John G. Reading, Jr., John K. Hays, C. R. Stearns, Sarah P. Stearns, Jane H. Stearns, Clara F. Reading, and Sarah B. C. Hays.
Churches. - There are two churches in the township. The first, a Baptist, at Barbour's Mills, was erected in 1875, and dedicated on Christmas day. The second, a Methodist, is seven miles down the creek at Woliver's. The first religious exercises were held by a Methodist minister named Tarring, in 1836.
Schools. - The first school house was a log building near the Heisly place, not far from the mouth of Wallis run. The second, built in 1838, stood near the mouth of Bear creek, at Barbour's Hills, and the third was built near the mouth of Wolf run. It is claimed that Samuel McBride was the first teacher. This was in 1836. Today there are seven school houses in the township, named as follows: Proctor (first and second grade), Barbour's Mills, Red, Factory, Styker, and Moorhart. The report for 1891 shows six months taught, with one male and six female teachers. The male teacher was paid $35 a month and the females $24.66.
This township, organized in 1835, was named after Ellis Lewis, then president judge of this judicial district. Its territory was taken from Hepburn. It is the seventh in size and has an area of 30,720 acres, with a population of 985 by the census of 1890.
On the 4th of May, 1846, court was petitioned to permit the annexation of a small part of Cascade township to Lewis. The line of Cascade was so irregular that the inhabitants were compelled to travel from ten to fourteen miles to the election. They resided east of Lycoming creek and were so situated that they had to hold their general election in Lewis and thereby incur the expense of a set of election officers to receive ten or fifteen votes. They therefore prayed to be attached to Lewis. Court appointed Henry Lenhart, Dr. Joseph M. Green, and John K. Hays, commissioners. They reported favorably and the division prayed for was ordered by the court, December 10, 1846. The records show that Furman Field paid the expenses, which amounted to $100.
Lewis is bounded on the east by Gamble and Cascade, on the north by McNett and McIntyre, on the west by Cogan House, and on the south by Lycoming and Hepburn townships. Lewis is well watered. Lycoming crook sweeps through its center from the northeast to the southwest, forming a narrow and romantic valley bounded by bold and precipitous mountains on both sides.
Lycoming creek is a stream of great historical importance. The great Sheshequin path, or Indian trail, passed along its banks, crossing it almost as many times as the Northern Central railroad does today, and in many places it is still pointed out. Over this trail many Indian expeditions moved, bent on plunder and murder; over it Conrad Weiser, the interpreter, often traveled, and later he was followed by the Moravian missionaries on their way to Onondaga, the capital of the Six Nations. The famous military expedition of Col. Thomas Hartley in 1778, when he invaded the Indian country, passed this way and widened the path greatly. The main body of the Indian forces descended this trail from the north in 1770, when the West Branch valley was devastated, Fort Muncy destroyed, Fort Freeland captured, and many white settlers carried into captivity.
The principal tributaries of Lycoming crook on the east side are Pleasant stream, sixteen miles long, Slack's run, and Clendenin's run; on the west side, Wolf run, Hagerman's run, and Gray's run. There are a few other unimportant tributaries,
Considering the geological aspect of this township, it may be said that along Lycoming creek it consists of Red Catskill (No. IX) above the bottom lands and up all the small streams that flow into it, to an elevation of about 1,650 feet, above this Pocono (No. X) occurs, reaching to near the top of the mountains, when Mauch Chunk (umbral) red shale (No. XI) occurs, above which, in places, the Pottsville conglomerate appears.
This township has considerable area of mountain plateau red shale (No. XI) lands, which have given a number of hardy German pioneers good farms, (by the use of fertilizers,) which have enabled them to raise fair crops. In Bobst mountain, in the southwest corner, is one settlement, and east of Trout run, towards Rose valley, is another. There is much rough, thin land on the maintains.
A fair variety of umbral iron ore (No. XI) occurs, and there is good fire clay. Building stone of an excellent quality have been quarried for many years and hauled to Williamsport. Copper has been found in pockets in the old sandstone (No. TX) at a number of places on Lvc6ming creek. One mile below Trout run there was found a thin deposit of copper shale, and at one point the copper shales had been dug out, leaving a hollow in the measures, in which was found a stone implement, left probably by some of the aborigines; but the copper was too lean and thin to be of any practical value. Good building and flagstone occur at many places just above Crescent, on the farm of Charles Heylman.
The surface of the township is quite varied, being cut up by numerous streams, along some of which are fair agricultural lands. The bottom lands along the valley of Lycoming, creek are quite good. A large area of the township is mountainous and forms the south escarpment of the main Allegheny chain, which, at the point whore it crosses Lycoming, creek, forms a remarkable crescent in the stream by the trend in the mountain chain, which gave the name many years ago to the iron and nail works located just across the creek in Hepburn township.
Prominent Early Settlers. - According to the best authority A. M. Slack was the first permanent settler in Lewis township. He squatted on what is the site of Bodines soon after the close of the Revolutionary war, and the little stream, Slack's run, takes its name from him. The land was surveyed to Isaac Penrose. The original draft, now in the possession of Samuel Bodine, Esq., is endorsed:
A draft of a tract of land situate on the east side of Lycoming creek, in Muncy township, Northumberland county, surveyed the 24th day of July, 1786, in pursuance of a warrant granted to Isaac Penrose, dated June 24, 1773. containing 182 acres, with the usual allowance of six per cent. for roads, etc.
Jos. J. Wallis, D. S.
In 1792, then Charles Williamson was preparing to cut the road through to the Genesee country, by ascending Trout run and passing over Laurel Hill, he established a depot for provisions where the village of Trout Run now stands. That there was a settlement there at that date seems certain, for Williamson says (See Phelps and Gorham's Purchase, page 253) that his party went up the Lycoming to the "house of one Kyle," who was then one of the farthest advanced settlers. From that point he sent out men to explore the route up Trout run, and return and report. By camping, breaking up, and working by slow stages, they succeeded in getting through to what is now Blossburg. What has been known for a hundred years as the "Block House," just across the Tioga county line, was built by Williamson as the first depot after leaving Trout run.
That James Kyle was an advance settler and made valuable improvements there is no doubt. In an issue of the Lycoming Gazette for March 14, 1810, he advertises for sale over his own name, "a valuable farm on which he lives, situate on Lycoming creek, twelve miles from Williamsport, containing 260 acres, between thirty and forty of which are cleared, with six acres of meadow, a thriving young orchard of apple trees, and a nice peach orchard. A square log house and kitchen, a good log barn, one of the best mill seats on Lycoming, on which there is a grist mill. In a word, the place is fit for almost any public business, as the great road [Williamson] leading to the State of New York passes through it."
It was this property, undoubtedly, that the Allens - as will be shown - afterwards purchased. And that Kyle was the builder of the first mill seems clear.
As the narrow valley was very wild settlers were slow to locate. A. M. Riley settled on the creek below Bodines previous to 1812. James Lusk purchased of Riley lands located there about the same time. A Mr. Keys settled on a portion of the Penrose tract soon after, Martha Clendenin about three miles above Trout run, and John Apker on the tract originally located by Luke Morris, all from 1812 to 1814. At this time the flats along the creek were covered with a forest of heavy pines, and the underbrush consisted of an almost impenetrable jungle of vines, briars, and laurel. The great Indian trail crossed the creek at the mouth of Trout run, and as it was a stopping place for the savages, caused a settlement to be made there.
Robert Allen was one of the first permanent settlers at Trout Run. He was born at Northumberland, August 6, 1797, of Scotch-Irish parentage. His father, John Allen, came from County Down, Ireland, whilst his mother, Mary Torbet, was of Scotch descent. They settled at Northumberland in its earliest history and followed farming and weaving. Six children were born unto them, viz: Hugh, James, Jane, Elizabeth, John, and Robert. Hugh received not only an academic education, but secured a partial military training, and being well versed in civil engineering he obtained a position of some prominence in the vicinity of Weehawken. Here he probably formed the acquaintance of Aaron Burr, and scarcely being out of his teens, was easily induced by that wily adventurer to accompany him in his great southern expedition. Burr was an acquaintance of Charles Williamson, and about this time visited him at Bath and remained several days. And it is not improbable that Burr passed over the Williamson road, which was then recognized as the quickest and best thoroughfare south, and for years was traveled by many eminent men as far away as Maryland and Virginia. When Hugh Allen disappeared with Burr he never was heard from again.
Early in 1800 John Allen, father of Hugh, moved from Northumberland and settled on a large tract of land on Lycoming creek, lying between the present hamlets of Cogan Station and Hepburnville. Here he waited in vain for the return of his lost son. Several times he made journeys to Washington on horseback in search of him, but only to return disappointed and disheartened. In 1819 he died and his farm of 300 acres was divided among his surviving children.
Robert Allen, the subject of our story, soon sold his interest to his older brothers, John and James, and with John Reed, Esq., made large purchases at the mouth of Trout run. At that time there was but one small log house probably the Kyle house spoken of by Williamson in the present village of Trout Run. With a force of men Robert Allen then young and vigorous soon cleared ground for several small farms, and erected the Trout Run House.
He married Mary Ann Hews, (born June 13, 1803,) eldest daughter of Henry and Martha Hews, whose land bordered the Allen Reed estate on the south. In 1824 the partnership of Allen and Reed was dissolved by mutual consent, Reed taking all the land north of Trout run, consisting now of the Wise and F. R. Weed estates. Allen for his share took the land lying south of said stream, on which the larger portion of the present village stands, including those lands of A. S. Turner and the farm of M. B. Weed, trustee.
The village made scarcely any progress in those days. In fact it did not take a start until after the railroad was built. Robert Allen was well liked by all who knew him. As a member of the Masonic society he stood high and in company with other members from Williamsport, assisted in organizing the lodges at Elmira and Corning, New York. As the host of the hotel he owned he could not be excelled. Many happy days were spent there by such representative men of the times as Tunison Coryell, Ralph Elliot, Samuel Caldwell, Major Cummings, Sheriff Bennett, and others, all of whom have passed away.
As a surveyor and engineer Robert Allen was practical and spent several years on the Detroit river and Lake Huron, in the vicinity of Sault Ste. Marie, where he held a position under the government. He was a Democrat in politics, but never aspired to political preferment. In 1841 he sold his hotel property to the railroad company and soon after built another, one half mile east of Trout Run, which still stands. He died, April 12, 1849, and was buried in the old cemetery at Newberry. His widow survived him until January 18, 1883, when she died and was buried by his side. In the closing years of her life she was blind and an invalid, but she bore her afflictions with Christain fortitude. She was a member of the Presbyterian church at Newberry.
Of the seven children of Robert Allen all are living. Henry H. and Joseph H. live with their brother Robert R., near Field's Station. Mary T., the eldest daughter, married Joseph Essington and lives at Sterlingville, Now York. Martha B. married Maj. G. W. Sour, and they live at Pine, Clinton county. Elizabeth H. married Peter Tinsman and lives in Williamsport. Harriet J., the youngest, married Edwin Walker and they reside at Goff's Falls, New Hampshire.
Among other prominent early settlers at Trout Run were Henry Hews and his wife Martha, nee Burston. They came from England with the colony that settled at what is now known as Oregon Hill, Pine township, and endured great trials and sufferings in the wilderness at that time. Henry Hews was born in England, May 16, 1779, and his wife, Martha Burston, February 23, 1783. Her native place was the town of Chard, Somersetshire, and her family was one of rank. Her husband, whom she married in England, was a mechanic and tradesman. With others they were induced to come to the United States by land agents to found a colony, but when they sailed they had no idea of the trials, privations, and sufferings that were in store for them in the dreary Pine creek wilderness.
After a few years residence in the "English settlement," they found that no headway was being made in reclaiming the wilderness, that their scanty means were well nigh exhausted, and the outlook was very discouraging. In the spring of 1807 Henry Hews and one or two other families, having heard of much better land some fifteen miles further north, left the place with a guide and made their way to that beautiful farming country now known as Nauvoo, in Tioga county. Here he purchased a tract of woodland and started in to clear it. In a few years he had, through hard work, succeeded in clearing, enough land to enable them to live off the produce. But the tract was too small to make a profitable farm, and he exchanged it for a larger piece of land near the Block House. Here, in a few years, he had another and better farm under fair cultivation. About this time a stage line was established between Williamsport and Blossburg, and Hews, having learned of a larger tract of land, partly cleared, on Lycoming creek, one mile below Trout Run, sold his farm and purchased it from its first settler, David Reynolds. It is now owned by ex-Prothonotary William Follmer.
Here Henry and Martha Hews, with their family of five children, settled and started in to improve their now purchase. They soon remodeled and enlarged the house and opened a tavern. It was here that soldiers returning over the Williamson road from the war of 1812-14 found shelter. Years afterwards shelter was given one night to a party of about forty travelers. They were reticent as to the object of their journey, but it was learned that the party was headed by Joseph Smith, of Palmyra, New York, and that he and his band of Mormons were en route for the West to found a colony. At this time the Hews tavern was the only one between Williams-port and Canton, and Williamsport and the Block House.
By perseverance, economy, and good management Hews succeeded in clearing up a farm of seventy acres of good producing land. In 1815 he built a saw mill at the mouth of Martha Clendenin run, and from the outline of the plan which still remains, his idea of conveying logs by water from Lycoming creek to his mill, thus averting loss by floods, was a good one. His market for manufactured lumber was Harrisburg and Columbia, whither it was floated in rafts.
Henry Hews was a strong Abolitionist in sentiment; he took no particular interest in the early politics of our country, but exercised his suffrage according to the dictates of what he thought was right. He was a consistent member of the Church of England, and lived in that faith until his death, which occurred October 6, 1817, in the thirty-ninth year of his age. His remains were buried at Newberry. He left seven children, viz: Mary Ann, born June 23, 1803; Burston, October 31, 1806; Richard B., January 7, 1809; William B., March 14, 1811; Harriet W., June 21, 1813; Elizabeth, September 24, 1815, and Henry, March 10, 1818. But two are now living, Elizabeth, widow of Nelson T. Place, and Henry, both residing at Laporte, Indiana.
When Martha Hews was left a widow with seven children, the eldest scarcely thirteen years of age, she felt the blow severely, but she put her trust in Him who had favored them in their dark days of adversity in the wilderness and bore up bravely under her greatest affliction. Possessing a strong mind, and being resolute and determined, she set to work to carry on business and soon surprised her neighbors by the enterprise she displayed in conducting the farm and saw mill. In a few years she married Charles Clendenin, eldest son of John Clendenin, a Revolutionary soldier, who lived on Lycoming creek a few miles north of Trout run. Four children were the fruits of this union, viz: Rebecca, Robert, Thomas, and Martha. The first two are deceased; Thomas is a farmer near Wayne, Clinton county, and Martha lives with her daughter at Omaha, Nebraska.
In 1831 Charles Clendenin died, and again we find the subject of our sketch a widow. She still retained the same sterling qualities of perseverance and business tact which enabled her to assist and promote the interests of her first husband. And although keenly realizing her situation for the second time, her courage did not desert her, but with renewed energy she assumed the responsibility of managing her own affairs and succeeded. Her hotel was now known far and near on account of' her hospitality and good cheer, and often would the weary sojourner travel until late at night in order to stop with "Aunt Martha Clendenin," the name she came to be affectionately and popularly known by.
For several years the postoffice was kept at her house. She also built and conducted a general store, which was the only one in that section of country for a long time, and therefore did a good business. She personally attended to purchasing her own goods at Williamsport, and often made the round trip there and back in time to, prepare dinner for her employees, a distance of twenty-eight miles. Unfortunately,. about 1841, her store was destroyed by fire and never rebuilt. She then sold her mill and farm to Peter Tinsman about 1865.
This heroic woman had reared and educated her large family of children as well as her circumstances and the opportunities of the times afforded. Gradually her sons attained manhood and left her for Indiana, being the first settlers at Laporte. Her daughters married at an early age and also migrated to that State. In 1865, "Aunt Martha," then growing old, left her home at Trout Run, where she bad experienced sorrows, triumphs, and happiness, and went to live with her daughter, Mrs. Elizabeth Place, of Laporte, and there she died, November 26, 1867, in the eighty-fifth year of her age. No tribute too high can be paid to the memory of "Aunt Martha" Clendenin Stern in her business transactions, but above all, honorable, and always respected; always walking in the light of God and depending on her Bible as her only guide, she met and triumphed over her many sorrows and died in peace.
Another early settler on Lycoming creek was John Bodine. He came there in April, 1838, and was employed as a contractor in laying the track of the "strap railroad" between Bodines and Ralston. When the work was finished he settled there and his place came to be known as Bodines, a name which it bears to this day. His son, Samuel Bodine, born June 12, 1814, near Allentown, Pennsylvania, followed his father in 1839, and remained. He now ranks as an old settler. John Bodine was born in Hunterdon county, New Jersey, in 1785, and died at his home in 1857.
Industries. - Among the industries of Lewis township are two fine grist millstone at Trout Run, run by Berger & Neyhart; the other at Bodines, by S. L. Andrews & Company. Lumbering, as has been stated, was among the early manufacturing enterprises of the people. The Clendenin saw mill was probably the first erected. In 1835 John Reed started a mill at Bodines, and it was afterwards carried on by Samuel Bodine. A few years afterwards the DuBois mill was started and continued for some time. It is now known as Noon's mill. A mill at Field's was also among the early enterprises. Among the modern mills may be mentioned that of I. L. Truman, at Trout Run, by steam; John B. Emery & Company, at Clendenin's, steam, the large steam mill of Thomas E. Proctor, six miles up Gray's run, reached by a railroad and supplied with locomotive and cars for hauling logs and lumber. The road is about eight miles long, and the mill is first-class in every respect. J. W. Heylmun has a water mill at Field's.
The leading industry in Lewis is the extensive tannery of Robert Innes, at Bodines. He located there in 1877 and founded the business, which has developed into large proportions. A neat little town has grown up around the tannery. The private dwelling of Mr. Innes, as well as the tannery, offices, store, and other buildings, are lighted by electricity, the plant for which is located on the ground. The settlement is complete within itself, being supplied with everything requisite, even to a flour mill, creamery, church, and undertaking establishment. There is a hotel at the railroad station, and another store near by.
Trout Run, the largest village in the township, bad been a noted place for a hundred years on account of the historic associations which cluster around it. The growth of the village has been small, however, considering its importance as a point in fishing, hunting, lumbering, and railroading, and its population today scarcely exceeds 300. The large hotel built by the railroad company, and which became such a popular place of resort, was burned a few years ago and is not likely to be rebuilt soon. The village is 694 feet above tide, contains two hotels, three general stores, one church, railroad and telegraph Station, graded school, two blacksmith shops, one wagon shop, Odd Fellows' hall, and about sixty dwelling houses. In addition to its grist and saw mills, its greatest industry is the N. Spencer Thomas Extract of Hemlock Bark Works, which were built several years ago. The plant is a valuable one and affords a good market for hemlock bark. The village boasts a very good cornet band of twelve pieces and an orchestra of eight members, under the leadership of C. H. Foulkrod.
The postoffice was established March 19, 1825, and Charles Clendenin was appointed postmaster. His successors have been as follows: Robert Allen, appointed November 5, 1827; Samuel Hepburn, November 2, 1830; John Cunen, April 11, 1832; Robert Allen, April 25, 1835; Daniel Brown, July 26, 1837; Charles Drum, April 1.8, 1840; Robert Allen, November 21, 1844; Charles Drum, January 13, 1.846; Charles Burrows, February 23, 1852; Samuel Dale, July 10, 1854; Frederick R. Weed, November 29, 1854, Charles H. Wise, October 2, 1865; Frederick R. Weed, May 3, 1867; James McWilliams, May 10, 1869; Lewis Edwards, March 8, 1877; John Straley, September 14, 1885; Isaac Cornwall, May 21, 1889. He is the present incumbent.
Bodines. - The next postoffice was established at Bodinesville, August 3, 1856, and Samuel Bodine appointed postmaster; August 40, 1887, the name was changed to Bodines. Samuel Bodine continued in office until the 1st of March, 1892, when he was succeeded by John D. Bunyan. He held the office for over thirty-six years, a longer time perhaps than any other postmaster in the county. Mr. Bodine also served three terms as justice of the peace and declined the fourth.
In 1876 the late celebrated Dr. Thaddeus S. Updegraff, of Elmira, established a summer camp in a clump of hemlocks, on the bank of Lycoming creek, at Bodines, where he usually spent several weeks in the trouting season. His place became quite noted and many prominent men visited him. Here, in 1879, he wrote a book entitled, "Camping in the Alleghenies; or, Bodines," which is good authority on how to rough it in the wilderness.
Field's Station. - A postoffice was established at Field’s Station, May 26, 1873, and Furman Field was appointed postmaster. He is still in office.
Gray's Run. - The last postoffice was established at Gray's Run, September 16, 1890, and James W. Weld was appointed to take charge of it. He is the present incumbent. Gray's Run takes its name from Tim. Gray, who lived at the mouth of the stream. He was a noted hunter and well known among sportsmen, who often visited him to secure his assistance in the chase. Gray kept trained dogs which he furnished to bunt deer. The stream was also noted for trout, and today there is a fishing cabin and pond on it, kept up by Williamsport and neighboring parties, for preserving and rearing this delicious fish.
Churches. - Early attention was given to the spiritual wants of the people. In 1842 Samuel Bodine and Mr. Bunnel started a Sunday school in a school house at Penn's Dale with an attendance of forty scholars. Religious services were also held here by Rev. David Hull, Presbyterian, but no organization was effected until January, 18471, at which time the Rev. E. Bradbury and I. Vanderbilt met and organized a Presbyterian church. John Bodine, Barbara Bodine, Jacob Bodine, Margaret Bodine, Manoch Alder, Mary Alder, Thomas Keys, Elizabeth Gray, Robert Clendenin, John Field, Margaret Field, Catharine Lusk, Mary Bodine, Mary Jane Roberts, John S. Apker, and Jane Apker were admitted as members, either by letter or upon examination. This was the beginning of the Penn's Dale church, of which Rev. Mr. Dickson is now pastor. There is a Presbyterian church at Trout Run, which was organized in 1871. Robert Innes also built a neat church at Bodines for free use by all denominations.
Schools. - As early as 1841 a school house was erected at Penn's Dale. Abraham Bunnel was the first teacher. Now there are seven schools, viz: Trout Run (three), Crescent, Bobst Mountain, Bodines, and Gray's Run.
This township was formed from territory taken from Hepburn and Plunkett's August 9, 1843. Its name was given to it on account of the many little cascades and waterfalls found in its dashing streams and murmuring rivulets. It is the sixth township in size in the county and has an area of 29,800 acres. The census for 1890 gives the township a population of 609. It is bounded on the east by Sullivan county and Plunkett's Creek township, Lycoming county, on the north by McIntyre, on the west by Lewis and Gamble, and on the south by Eldred and Plunkett’s Creek.
Burnett's ridge, which was designated as a line at the Indian purchase of 1768, sweeps across the township into Sullivan county. It begins below Bodines on Lycoming creek. This ridge is a famous landmark of early times and possesses more than ordinary historical interest. Its name was probably given to it in honor of William Burnett, who flourished in the, reign of William and Mary, and succeeded to the government of the Colony of in 1720. Stone, in his Life of Sir William Johnson (Vol. I, page 30) says that with the exception of Colonel Dongan, his Indian policy was marked by the most prudent forecast and the greatest wisdom. He became a great Indian trader and built a fort at Oswego for the protection of his agents and stores from the French. He commanded the respect and enjoyed the full confidence of the Indians. There is little doubt that this ridge was named after him on account of some incident or circumstance to us now unknown.
The principal streams in this township are the east and west branches of Wallis run, which empties into Loyalsock; Salt run, which heads in Burnett's ridge and empties into Wallis run in Gamble township, and Slack's run, which falls into Lycoming creek.
Cascade consists of Red Catskill (No. IX), which forms an elevated valley some 1.600 to 1,700 feet above tide, and embraces the greater part of the township. On the north and south edges there are ridges of Pocono rock (No. X), some of which are capped by Mauch Chunk red shales (No. XI), and some areas of Pottsville conglomerate. There are many good and well cultivated farms in the township.
The mineral deposits are not much known, not having been exploited. There are deposits of copper shale reported of sufficient thickness to invite further attention. The surface of the township is mostly within the Allegheny mountain plateau and consists of a mountain valley between two ridges. The moraine appears on Slack's run, where a drift hill extends across the valley and rests against Burnett's ridge, showing very distinctly strong glacial action.
First Settlers. - Michael Kelly, who penetrated the forests at the head of Wallis run in July, 1843, was the first settler in the fastnesses of Cascade. He cut a road through the woods from DuBois's saw mill, on Lycoming, to the present Kellysburg, six miles, so that he could get an ox team and wagon. through. This was the first road in this part of the county and over it Mr. Kelly hauled the lumber used in the construction of his log house, and also moved his family in by the same means. In October of the same year he was followed by a Mr. Lang, of Philadelphia, who purchased the property and erected the buildings now owned by Peter O'Connor. The next few years he was followed by Patrick Cummings, Bernard, Thomas, Patrick, and Edward Norton, Lawrence Ging, Michael Kehoe, Jeremiah and James Lee, John Smith, Thomas Noon, Michael Cox, William McEnarney, George Nevell, William and John Davis, Henry Riley, Samuel Stall, James Condon, John and Joseph Keefer, Thomas Logue, Patrick Flanagan, Thomas and Patrick Kinney, Michael Barry, John and Patrick Davis, Matthias McDonald, William O'Brien, Peter O'Connor, Richard Farrell, and others. Each purchased a property and erected buildings.
In 1845 John and Matthias DuBois rented a mill seat and water power from Mr. Kelly and erected a saw mill on it, in which they placed a pair of buhrs to do the grinding for the settlement. At that time grist mills were scarce and the settlers in Plunkett's Creek township and Fox township, Sullivan county, cut paths through the woods and brought their grain on horseback to that mill to be ground. In 1852 the mill took fire from a hot journal and was burned. Its loss was so severely felt in the settlements that Mr. Kelly was induced to rebuild it in 1858. A few years later he converted it into a circular saw mill and manufactured lumber on it until 1873, when he erected a large steam mill and continued in the lumber business until the spring of 1877, when he quit the lumber business and moved to Kansas, where he died in 1883.
Kellysburg. - The settlement founded by Michael Kelly nearly fifty years ago is now known as Kellysburg. He was an active, enterprising man, and through his efforts aided largely in reclaiming what was a wild and inhospitable region. Some of his descendants still reside there. Michael Kelly was the Democratic nominee for sheriff in 1872, and after an exceedingly bitter and exciting campaign was cruelly defeated. The blow was such a severe one that it seemed to break his spirit, and as soon as he could dispose of his property be left the county and located in the new State of Kansas. And so ended the life of the brave, hardy enterprising, big-hearted pioneer of Cascade.
The only postoffice in the township is at Kellysburg. It was established July 25, 1866, and Michael Kelly was appointed postmaster. He served until January 10, 1878, when be was succeeded by Mary Kelly. She only served eighteen days, when, on January 28, 1878, she was succeeded by Mary A. Kelly, the present incumbent. It will be seen that a member of the Kelly family has held the office from the beginning, a period of twenty-six years.
The descendants of the first settlers of Cascade have proved themselves honorable, talented, progressive, and worthy citizens.
St. Mary's Catholic Church is the only church in the township. As early as 1848 Catholic services were hold in the houses of Michael Kelly and John Keefer by Fathers O'Keefe, Hannigan, and others. Nearly all the first settlers of the township were members of this faith, and attended Mass whenever the opportunity offered. In 1854 a small frame building was erected on the farm of Patrick Kinney, who donated land for a church and cemetery. It stood a couple of miles Southwest of Kellysburg, and served the congregation until the erection of the present church. The lumber was given by John and Matthias DuBois, and Levi Hartman was the carpenter. In 1878 the old church was removed, and the present one erected on the same site by Father Dunn. It is 40x80 feet in dimensions. Edward F. Noon was the builder. St. Mary's is a mission, and has always been in charge of the pastor of an adjoining parish. It embraces seventy-five families, and is the only congregation and house of worship in the township.
Schools. - Cascade has four school houses, named as follows: Kelly, McLaughlin, Slack Run, and Wallis Run.
A petition signed by Seth Winner and many other taxpayers, praying for the erection of a new township out of parts of Lewis and Cascade, was laid before the court at April sessions, 1874, whereupon Robert H. Faries, Abraham Swartz, and J. C. Green were appointed viewers. Mr. Faries not being able to serve on account of absence, Ira J. Parker was substituted. They reported favorably, August 27, 1874, when the report was read and referred back for the correction of errors. It was again submitted, January 11, 1875, when a remonstrance was filed. After a hearing the objections were overruled and the report approved by Judge Gamble, and an election was ordered to be hold January 29, 1875, It resulted in 152 votes for division without a single one in opposition, and on the following day (January 30, 1875) a decree signed by Huston Hepburn, associate judge, was made erecting the township and naming it Gamble, in honor of James Gamble, president judge. The cost of securing the now township, according to the record, was $96.40.
Gamble is the twelfth in size in the county and has an area of 22,760 acres, with a population of 754 by the census of 1890. It is bounded on the east Plunkett's Creek, on the north by Cascade and Lewis, on the west by Lewis, and the south by Hepburn, Eldred, and Plunkett's Creek townships. Geologically it consists, in greater part, of Red Catskill (No. IX) in the western and northern part, being mountain plateau lands. Rose valley, lying in the southern part, contains much fine farm land, and is thickly settled. This is a peculiar and beautiful valley, shut in by the surrounding mountains, and it is greatly admired by those who visit it. In the lower part of the valley are the remains of a glacial lake. It seems that its waters once flowed eastward into Murray's run, but when the moraine was heaped up at its outlet a lake was formed whose waters then forced a channel for exit at its western end through the soft red shale. A large boulder of Pottsville conglomerate, measuring 15x20 feet, lies as an "outlier" nearly half a mile in advance of the moraine hills, partially imbedded in the red Catskill soil of a field oil the farm of Matthew All. Hall. The bed of the lake has long been a large cranberry swamp, and the owner gathers and markets the berries every year. They are of a good quality, finely flavored, and some years the yield has reached fifty bushels. This is the largest cranberry swamp in the county.
In the south and southeastern part of the township is a small area of Pocono (No. X) which is mountainous. No mineral developments have been made in Gamble. There is much glacial drift in the northern part, and it forms part of the south escarpment of the main Allegheny range.
Exploration and Settlement. - David McMicken, who first settled on the Loyalsock with his parents in 1784, is credited with being one of the first discoverers of the beautiful valley of Rose. He visited the place with a party of hunters near, the close of the last century, and was so struck with its appearance that he took up a large body of land which he afterwards sold.
One of the first if not the first settler in this valley was John Rose, a Scotchman by birth. He was born in 1772, came to America in 1794, and died September 1, 1812, at Williamsport. His first wife was a Patton, of Centre county. Soon after marriage he settled in what is now Gamble township and named his place "Scotland," and from him the valley takes its name, only that it was at first called "Rose's valley." The place where Rose settled is in the northwestern corner of the valley, and the farm is now divided and owned by George Beidlespacher, John Stroble, and George Stiger, From those farms a road descends a very long and steep bill to Trout run, which is known as the "Scotland Hill road" to this day.
John Rose was accompanied by an educated gentleman named Andrew Tulloh, as a companion, who was familiarly called "Tallow." He was a lawyer by profession. He afterwards moved to Williamsport and built the first brick edifice for an office. It is still standing and is known as No. 31 East Front street. A second story was afterwards added.
Rose's second wife was Sarah, daughter of Abraham Scott, who purchased the island in the river opposite Northumberland from Mungo Reed in 1786. He died in 1798, having failed to pay all the purchase money, and proceedings in partition were commenced in 1802 by the heirs. Sarah appears as one of the heirs and she conveyed her share to Edward Lyon. After marrying the second time John Rose settled at Williamsport. The old mansion where he lived stood on the brow of the terrace on the northeast corner of High and Cemetery streets, Williamsport. Miss Scott had several negro slaves which she obtained as part of her share out of her father's estate. She was born in 1780 in Lancaster county, and died at Williamsport, November 4, 1823. Both are buried in Wildwood. She left a daughter named Isabella, who married Robert C. Grier, afterwards a justice of the United States Supreme court, from whom we have the "Grier farm" and "Grier street," Williamsport.
After Rose left the valley it filled up slowly with rugged German settlers, who by dint of hard work reclaimed it from its pristine condition and made it in reality bloom like a rose. An old time journalist, who has been dead for many years, visited the valley in April, 1870, and thus wrote of its early settlers:
A stroll through this valley has given the writer idea of its resources, and its inhabitants, and its old settlers. In 1820 James McWilliams, Sr. settled upon the property that Mr. Stroble now owns and occupies. In the early days of McWilliams he endured great hardships, settling in the woods, and worked unceasingly, lone handed, to clear out the forests into farming lands. The forests were very heavy and thick, and as his sons grew up he was enabled, after several years of hard toil, to raise sufficient grain and vegetables for all the necessaries of life. John D. Griggs was one of the next settlers. He was an indomitable, energetic, and industrious man. He was greatly instrumental in having Rose valley improved at an early day. The next person we speak of is Jacob Ulmer. He was also among the first settlers. He cleared out a fine farm, and planted it with the choicest fruit trees. Mr. Ulmer was one of the most industrious men of this valley. We speak of David Stroble next. He planted himself down in this "vineyard of harmories;" industrious as he was for years, he finally met with a disastrous misfortune in the entire destruction of his dwelling house by fire, which caused him to renew his efforts to regain his losses - the neighbors of the adjoining townships greatly assisting him. At that day the neighbors were kind to each other, and sympathized with their fellow neighbors in any losses sustained. John and Michael Stiger were also early settlers. They removed there from the swamps of the Lehigh, where they were engaged in the, manufacture of shingles. Having exhausted all their supplies of timber, they were obliged to meet some other expedient of making a living, and they pitched their tents, in Rose valley. A Mr. Beidlespacher was the next settler in the valley. He raised a large family of children, and cleared a large tract of land.
Now let us speak of the improvements of Rose valley, its farms and its saw mills, and some of the men connected with them. Isaac Lippincott was possessed of it large amount of lands. He erected a water-power mill, and during his lifetime he manufactured a large quantity of lumber. He died in 1864, intestate. After a length of time his sons, Edward, Caleb, and Joshua, made an agreement in relation to the division of the property Edward taking that portion situated in Rose valley, after which he built a large and magnificent steam saw mill, and carried on the business of manufacturing lumber for three years; he also in that time built another mill in Cascade township, in company with J. S. Lowe. Joseph Hall purchased the farm property formerly belonging to Lippincott. It is a large fine property with splendid buildings. All the foregoing original settlers are deceased but Jacob Ulmer, who, in April, 1892, was still living in his ninety-second year.
Manufactures. - At a very early day, soon after the beginning of the century salt works were established about a mile above the mouth of Salt run. Remains of the stone furnaces, three or four in number, can still be seen. Two wells were sunk to a considerable depth and walled up, into which the salt water collected, and was then pumped out for use in the vats. These wells can still be seen. They are a source of some danger to cattle. Only a year ago a cow fell in and was rescued with difficulty. The water is strongly impregnated with salt. The name of the party carrying on these works has been lost, but Mr. Henry Southard, who lives near the wells and has often seen the ruins of the works, thinks his name was Pod, or Potts. At the time salt was made here it was extremely scarce and high in price.
A short distance above the salt wells a potash manufactory was started, probably by the same man, and about the same time. Old settlers speak of the place where considerable timbered ground was cut over to obtain material. When Edward Lippincott took the saw mill at the glacial lake he launched forth into an extensive business. He was a social, pleasant man and soon succeeded in gaining the confidence of the people to such an extent that they not only willingly loaned him their money, but allowed their bills for labor and produce to stand, in order to aid him in getting his business operations fairly under way. This was, between 1847 and 1865. He drove business on a large scale, and prospered. Everybody lent him a helping hand. His credit seemed to be unlimited among his Rose valley neighbors. The bed of the lake was turned into a mill pond which covered 200 acres. He started with a water power mill, but not deeming it of sufficient capacity, built a first-class steam mill which cost $40, 000. He was then doing well, but being anxious to enlarge his business, erected works for making hemlock bark extract at a cost of $60,000. In the manufacture of this article he was in advance of the times, and his works proved a failure. He built another saw mill on a branch of Murray's run which cost $16,000. These improvements put him heavily in debt and being no longer able to meet his obligations, he failed in 1867. The first judgment entered against him was by Patterson & Lippincott, of Philadelphia, November 25, 1867, for $19,421.45. Then came Snyder Brothers, machinists, of Williamsport, with a judgment for $4,473.10, December 2, 1867. These judgments were followed by a multitude of smaller ones. The estate failed to pay the debts and the creditors lost heavily.
While Lippincott did business in Rose valley he benefited the people by causing their property to appreciate in value, and if they lost money by loaning it to him, they are nearly all rich today, while be is a hopeless bankrupt. His fine dwelling houses, store house, barns, and other buildings which he erected in the days of his prosperity are still there, but his mills have crumbled into ruins. His manufactured lumber was largely hauled to Montoursville and sent to market by canal. His failure, on account of the large number of people he owed, caused the wildest excitement not only in the valley but throughout the country, and it is talked about even to this day.
The farm where Lippincott lived is now owned by Matthew M. Hall. It contains 300 acres, and the house and barn are the largest and finest in the valley. The old store house still stands. The only streams of water in the valley are the heads of Mill creek, and Wallis and Murray runs. John D. Griggs, who settled in the valley as early as 1830, built a saw mill about 1845. He worked on it a long, time, doing nearly all the work himself. William Ball, however, had built a mill before him. Thomas Hays also erected a mill before Lippincott. It was below the Griggs mill, on Mill creek. The Griggs homestead is now owned by Daniel Griggs. John D. Griggs, the father and pioneer, died at Antes Fort (Jersey Shore Station) May 16, 1876, in his eighty-eighth year. He came from New Jersey in 1819 and first settled near Warrensville.
Among the present industries is a saw and shingle mill on the head of Mill creek, owned by Jacob Stroble. It is driven by steam. Henry Southard has a water mill on Murray ran, and Peter Lush operates a steam mill in Beech valley, at the head of the same stream. David Kiess also operates a water mill on Mill creek.
Postoffices. - There are two postoffices in Gamble township. Rose Valley was established July 25, 1866, and Edward Lippincott was appointed postmaster. His successors have been Joseph Hall, appointed February 8, 1870 - Miss Lora A. Hall, July 9, 1883; Hannah M. Hall, September 16, 1884, and David L. Stiger, August 4, 1886, the present incumbent.
The second, named Wallis Run, is located in the eastern end of the township. It was established July 25, 1866, and George Brouse was appointed postmaster. He has had four successors, viz: Mary B. Zeigler, appointed January 20, 1880; Sarah A. Hoffman, February 4, 1881; William Frymire, May 10, 1887; Isaac H. Southard, October 1, 1887. He still holds the office. Although Mr. Frymire is reported as serving as postmaster, he did not qualify, and the office passed into the hands of Mr. Southard.
Churches. - There are two churches in Gamble one, a Union church, in Rose valley, is used by the Baptists and Evangelicals; the other, a Methodist Episcopal, also used by the Christians, is located on Wallis run.
Schools. - The first school house was built in Rose valley by John Griggs in 1839. It was a log building. The first teacher was J. W. Milnor, and the first scholars to arrive the morning the school opened were John and Peter Griggs. This was about the holidays, and three months of school followed. The township now has five school houses, viz: Rose Valley, Wallis Run, Loder, Ely, and Beech Valley. The report for 1891 shows six months taught by one male and four female teachers at an average salary of $33 per month.