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Ashland County, Ohio

History & Genealogy

A History of the Pioneer and Modern Times

Ashland County, Ohio
by H. S. Knapp
Publ: Philadelphia
by J. B. Lippincott & Co.
(Transcribed by Sharon Wick)

Lake Township
pg. 385

     SURVEYED IN 1807, by Jonathan Cox. On the 5th of September, 1814, (Oliver Jones, Jonathan Butler, and Benjamin Miller, Commissioners of Wayne County,) Lake was organized as it now is, except that a part of the whole of Washington Township, Holmes County, was included.  Holmes County was erected since (January 20, 1824).  At that time Coshocton and Wayne joined.

Population in 1820 ..........311
Population in 1830\ .........552
Population in 1840 .......1145
Population in 1850 ........880
Population in 1860 ........912

     There are no towns in Lake Township.  By the operation of the act of 1846 erecting Ashland County, Lake, which had already been shorn of its full proportions by the erection of Holmes County, became yet farther reduced, and has now a smaller area than any township organization in the county except Mifflin.  It is known as "Little Lake;" yet, notwithstanding its decimation of territory, the census of 1860 exhibits a respectable gain, as compared with the decennial period immediately preceding, while other townships in the county show a falling off in population during the same space of time.


     As many references are made in the memoranda of the early settlers to this mill, it may be a matter of interest to state that it was erected by Nathan G. Odell, in the spring of 1812.  Mr. Odell entered the tract upon which the mill is located in April, 1810, and at once commenced his improvement, and in March, 1811, removed his family to the place.  He was the first white settler within the limits of what is now Clinton township, Wayne County.  He died in Michigan, in 1833, at the age of sixty-seven.  His son, L. D. Odell, Esq., is now the owner and occupant of a part of the land originally entered by his father, but the mill is owned by Joseph Newkirk.
The building was originally constructed of hewn logs, and raised by the aid of friendly Indians, then inhabiting the neighborhood, and without whose aid it could not have been erected.


GEORGE BENDER immigrated to Lake Township in 1828, and purchased the land now occupied by his son, Martin Bender.  He continued his residence upon this land until his death, which occurred in June, 1859.

JACOB EMRICK entered the southeast quarter of section 3, Lake Township, at the land-office at Wooster, in 1830, after the government had reduced their lands to $1.25 per acre.  The whole farm is upland, and at the time of its purchase Mr. Emrick's neighbors regarded his investment a very unwise one; but him efforts at cultivation, after clearing a few acres, proved successful, and he was among the first who demonstrated the fertility of the hills, and showed that, for wheat growing purposes, they were really superior to the bottom lands, while for all other crops, excepting corn, they were not inferior to the valleys.

JOHN EMRICK removed to Lake Township from Somerset County, Pennsylvania, in September, 1822, his father, Andrew Emrick, having entered for him the northeast quarter of section 9, and the southeast quarter of section 4, the preceding year.  At the date of his removal hither, his family consisted of his wife and the following children, namely: John, Jacob, Drusilla, Mary, Andrw Christiana, George, and Rebecca.
At this date there was neither church nor school house in the township.
    Mr. Emrick died in July, 1847, aged sixty-six years.  John and George are residents of Indiana; Jacob is a resident of Lake Township; Drusilla is the wife of William North, of Vermillion Township; Mary is the wife of George Connell, of Lake Township; Andrew died in Van Wert County, in 1856; Christiana married Simon Tapper, with whom she resides in Vermillion Township; and Rebecca, wife of Michael Otto, resides in Mohican Township.

JOHN EWALT, an emigrant from Pennsylvania, removed with his family to Lake Township in the year 1820, and entered the land now owned by Morgan Workman.  He died in 1847 at the age of sixty-three William D. Ewalt, of Green Township is the only son of the deceased now residing in Ashland County.

GEORGE MARKS removed to Lake Township from Washington County, Pennsylvania, in June, 1819.  His family then consisted of his wife and four children, namely:  Mary, Ephraim, William, and George.
     The citizens then residing in Lake Township, according to his best recollection were Wm. Green, Wm. Greenlee, Asahel Webster, Joshua Oram, Jabez Smith, James Loudon Priest, and John Wetherbee.
 Mr. Marks entered the tract of land upon which his sons, Robert and George, now reside in Lake Township.
     Mary married Benjamin Finley, and died in 1854; Ephraim is a resident of Loudonville; William died in 1842, and George, as before stated, resides with his younger brother upon the old homestead.
     The first sale of lots in Loudonville was made on the 14th of September, 1814.  The land upon which the town is situated was originally entered by James Loudon Priest, who subsequently sold an undivided interest to Stephen Butler, and they jointly executed titles to purchasers.
     Mr. Marks died on the 2d of October, 1861, having attained the age of 74 years.

ELIJAH ORAM.  In December, 1807, his father, Joshua Oram, and family, immigrated to Fairfield County, Ohio, from the State of Maryland.  In November, 1811, the family removed to Lake Township, and entered and commenced improvement upon a quarter which, by subsequent divisions, became a part of the Township of Clinton.  In the fall of 1812, the family of Mr. Oram, with several others, established a fort near the southern line of Lake Township, where they remained about three months.  In 1815 his father sold the farm he originally purchased, and entered the northeast and southeast quarters of section 15, Lake Township, and immediately commenced improvement upon the former quarter.  After residing upon this land about three years, he sold the Asahel Webster, and removed to the southeast quarter, which he improved and made his residence until his decease, which occurred on the 27th day of August, 1831.  Elijah Oram, Esq., is the present owner of three-fourths of this old homestead quarter, and of eighty acres adjoining.
     When his father commenced his residence in Lake, there was not a white family residing within the limits of what now forms the township.  When he raised his second cabin, in 1815, he traveled a circuit of ten mile to gather the necessary force of men for the purpose.
     The supplies of breadstuffs were obtained from Knox County, which was then considered the "Egypt" of the country, where the corn purchased was ground at Shrimplin's Mill, and was brought home on packhorses during the winter season, and on canoes when the streams were navigable.  After the neighborhood began to raise its own supplies of corn, it was prepared for converting into bread by breaking up in wooden mortars, an article which belonged to nearly every cabin, and which was regarded as an indispensable machine in the domestic economy.  The mills were so remote that several families subsisted many years almost exclusively upon this domestic flour.

JOHN WETHERBEE emigrated from Pennsylvania to Lake Township in 1817.  His family consisted of his wife and nine children, the only surviving one of whom, now a resident of Ashland County, is Justice Wetherbee, Esq., of Mohican Township.
     In 1846 Mr. Wetherbee removed to Green Township, and on the 25th of December, 1853, died at the residence of his son-in-law, James Aylesworth, of Wayne County, at the age of seventy-seven years.













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