THIS township was
surveyed in 1807, by Mansfield Ludlow, and organized
on the 12th of February, 1819 out of the territory
Population in 1820.......................................
Population in 1830.......................................
Population in 1840.......................................1645
Population in 1850 less east tier sections ..... 1532
Population in 1860 less east tier sections.......1511
Voters at the October Election
following is a list of the persons voting at the
October election, 1827, as copied from the original
poll-book, and certified to by Jesse Matthews,
John Bryan, and Jacob Kiplinger,
Judges; and Thomas McBride and Shadrach
Bryan, clerks. Those to whose names is
attached at the asterisk (*) are deceased; and those
with the dagger (†)
are removed from the township. Those to which
no sign is attached continue residents of the
Martin Shaffer,† Michael Morkle,† Thomas
McBride,* George Long,† Adam Keny,* Shadrach Bryan,
Joseph Chilcoat,† Daniel Bryan,† Michael Kiplinger,
Lawrence Swope, Peter Kiplinger,† John Tanyer,†
William Brosser,† John Meason,* Isaac Lyons,* John
A. Smiley,† Robert Smilie,* Wm. Harris, † Moses
Lyons,* John A. Smiley,& Robet Smilie,* Wm. Harris,†
Moses Kitchen,* Jacob Hellman,* Jacob Berry, Peter
Kane, John Kelley,† Hanson Hamilton, Nicholas
Shaffer, Tate Brooks,* Philip Brown,† Daniel
Goodwin, * Amos McBride,† Jonas H. Gierhart,† Samuel
Chacy,† John Johnsonbaugh,† Adam Burge,* Noah Long,(
Thomas Smith,* Solomon Mokle,† James George,*
Nathaniel Lyons,* William Smith, John Duncan,* Henry
Kiplinger,† Benjamin Drodge,† Martin Fast,* Josiah
Lee, Samuel McConahey,† Peter Henry,† Matthias
Rickle, Henry Kiplinger,† John Harbaugh,* John
Nelson,† Thomas Cole, John Rickle,* John Laflor,*
James Fulton,* Peter Berk,† William Anderson,† John
Vavalman, Charles Hay, Michael Rickle, Henry
Shissler, Hankey Priest, James durfy,* Stephen
Whole number of voters,
67; of whom 26 have removed, 24 are deceased, and 17
continue residents of the township
There are three towns in the township, namely:
Perrysburg, Albany, and Polk.
town was laid out Oct. 13, 1830, by Josiah Lee
and David Buchanan and was surveyed by
Robert Buchanan. Its population, in
1860, amounted to one hundred and fifteen. In
the census of former
years its population had not been taken separately,
but had been merged in that of the township.
There is a Methodist Episcopal Church building in
the village, and a good school-house. There is
also 1 tavern, 2 stores, 1 grocery, 4 boot and shoe
shops, 1 blacksmith shop, and 1 wagon and carriage
shop. The name of the post-office is
Was laid out April 23, 1832, by
Was laid out May 12, 1849, by
John Kuhn. its population, in 1860, was
CHURCHES IN JACKSON TOWNSHIP.
two in the township - one at Perrysburg and one at
The church building at Perrysburg was erected about the
year 1839, as appears by the deed of Robert
Buchanan to the trustees, which bears date May
11, 1839. Rev. Leonard B. Gurley was
presiding elder, and Rev. John Mitchell
preacher in charge. The officers of the
church, when the building was dedicated, were,
Henry Eldridge and Robert Buchanan,
class-leaders; John Hazard, John Montgomery, John
S. Bryan, Henry Eldridge, Thomas Cole, Alexander
Smith, Belding Kellogg, and Ezra W. Reed,
trustees; Thomas Cole, circuit steward.
There were at this time about thirty-eight members.
The present preachers in charge are, Rev. Philip
Roseberry and the Rev. J. R. Wood.
Class-Leaders: A. C. Reed, Henry
Berry, and Samuel Berry. Circuit
Steward: Stephen Cole. Trustees:
Henery Berry, William Spencer, Abner C.
Reed, Chester Matthews, Jonas Wiltrout, Samuel
Berry, and Stephen Cole. There are
at present sixty members.
The present church building, at Polk, was erected in
the fall of 1839.
The deed of John Bryan and wife to John
Bryan, Shadrach Bryan, Elisha Chilcote, Leonard
Richard, Joseph High, David Proudfit, and
Peter Bowman, trustees, si dated the 23d day of
January, 1840. The preacher in charge was
Rev. George Howe, of Ashland. The building
was not formally dedicated, but the first sermon was
preached by Rev. George McClure. John Bryan
was class-leader, and William Millington, of
Ashland, circuit steward. When the church
building was erected there were about sixty members.
The trustees, in 1862, are, Samuel T. Urie,
Shadrach Bryan, William Ruffcorn, Daniel Brown, John
Chilcote, John Gordon, and Stephen Barrack.
The class-leaders are, William Ruffcorn, Stephen
Barrack, and John Howman. Circuit
steward, Shadrach Bryan. The membership
for 1862 amounts to fifty.
The church, at Polk, when the building was erected, was
attached to the Ashland circuit, Mansfield District;
and the church at Perrysburg belonged to the
Congress Circuit, Wooster District.
GERMAN REFORMED AND LUTHERAN
society, composed of members from Orange and Jackson
Townships, was organized in the winter of 1829-30.
The original trustees of the
church were, John Keen, Sr., and John
Kuhn. Rev. Henry Sonedecker was the
pastor. The membership amounted to about
forty. The first church building, constructed
where Polk now stands, was commenced in 1827, and
the first services were held in teh building in the
summer of the following year, although the society
at this time was not formally organized. The
members from Orange Township subsequently withdrew
and formed a distinct society; and, in 1840, the
Jackson Township Church erected the present house
for public worship, half a mile west of Perrysburg.
The building is 35 by 40 feet, and contains seats
for three hundred persons. The German Reformed
pastor is Rev. E. T. H. Whaler; Michael Bower,
elder; and Jacob Kiplinger and Jacob Hines,
deacons. The number of members is about fifty.
The Lutheran pastor is the Rev. Mr. Voglesang;
Samuel Bennage, elder; and Abram Bennage
and David Holmes, deacons. The membership
amounts to about fifty-five.
on the south line of Jackson Township, about half a
mile west of Lafayette, upon land purchased for the
purpose by John Snowbarger. The
building had been some years previously erected by
the "seceders" as a house of worship; but was
abandoned by them, and afterward occupied as a
dwelling. Mr. Snowbarger donated the
building for the use of the German Baptists, of the
Ashland and Mohican Districts, on the 29th of
September, 1856. Both the Mohican and Ashland
Districts held meetings in this house. The
building will seat two hundred persons.
[Further information relating to this church will be
found under the head of "German Baptists, or Tunkers."]
denomination organized its first "class" in Jackson
Township, in September, 1860. In 1861, under
the name of "Otterheim Chapel," a church building
was erected near the southwest corner of the
township. The size of the building is 30 by 36
feet, and will accommodate with seats about two
hundred and fifty persons. The preacher in
charge is Rev. Mr. Crubaugh, assisted by the
Rev. Mr. Dillon.
was organized Mar. 30, 1861, under the pastoral
charge of Rev. Joseph M. Dixon.
Original trustees, Jacob Kiplinger, Adam Lover,
and Daniel Stick. Elder:
Henry Kiplinger. Deacons:
John Kauffman and Peter Frantz.
Number of members, twenty-nine. The church
building, 35 by 45 feet, was erected in the summer
Rev. D. R. Moor is
the present pastor; John Heifner, elder; and
Samuel Fluke and Henry Wicks, deacons;
William Davidson, Samuel Fluke, ,and Henry
Wicks, trustees. Number of members,
TOWNSHIP OFFICERS FOR 1862.
Isaac Holt - Trustees, William
Berry, J. Wicks, and John Russell -
Assessor, John C. Horn - Treasurer,
John Keen, Jr. - Constables,
Jonathan Buzzard and Joshua Rickel.
JUSTICES OF THE PEACE IN
JACKSON TOWNSHIP SINCE 1831.
||John Keene, Jr.,
||Joseph C. Bolles,
||Joseph C. Bolles,
REMINISCENCES OF THE
PIONEERS OF JACKSON TOWNSHIP.
BERRY emigrated from Pennsylvania, in
1819, and resided two years with his brother,
Peter Berry, who had leased the land in section
16, Perry Township, now owned and occupied by
Isaac Cahill, Esq. In 1821 he leased the
northwest quarter of section 16, Jackson Township,
and subsequently entered at the Wooster Land Office
the land upon which he now resides. His wife
and nine children composed his family when he
removed to Jackson Township. Of these, all
except three are now living in said town-
- Jacob and Peter being residents of
Illinois, and Margaret, wife of Eli Fast,
being a resident of Ruggles Township.
removed from Fairfield County, Ohio, to Mohican
Township, in April, 1815. His family at this
time consisted of his wife and sons, Shadrach,
John J., Silas A., and Caleb, and
daughter Ruth, (the latter the widow of the
late William Millington, Esq., of Ashland.)
In 1824 Mr. Bryan removed his family to the
southeast quarter of section 18, Jackson Township -
being the same land upon which now stands the
greater part of the town of Polk. Mr. Bryan
died on the 7th of February, 1848, at the age of
Shadrach (eldest son of John Bryan)
married in 1829, and since 1830 has owned and
occupied a portion of the quarter originally entered
by his father.
of the Early Settlement of Mohican Township.
The intelligence of the murder of Seymour and
Ruffner families by the Indians having
reached the neighborhood, Benjamin Bunn
concluded it prudent to look to his means of
defense. Accordingly, he took his rifle from
the hooks, stepped to his cabin door, and discharged
its contents in the air. The report was heard
by Vachel Metcalf, (who had not, at the time,
received the murder news,) and he seized and
instantly discharged his gun. Bunn then
fired the second shot, and so they replied back and
forth until thirteen guns were fired. Thus the
few helpless families in the neigh-
borhood became aroused and panic-stricken.
East of Jeromeville, two miles, a few families had
settled, namely: William Bryan,
James Conly, and Elisha Chilcote.
The men, women, and children all collected at the
cabin of William Bryan. Their whole
warlike resources consisted of one old gun, one axe,
and a butcher-knife. Thus armed, they awaited
in agony the fate they feared was in store for them.
In the neighborhood of Bunn and Metcalf,
there were the families of James Slater and
James Bryan. They learned the facts in
the case, and began the erection of a fort.
Still farther down the Mohican was another small
settlement of the Collier's and others.
They also heard the guns, and became desperately
alarmed. J. Collier and family betook
themselves to the cornfield. The dog of
Collier did not seem to understand the necessity
of silence, and commenced making some noise in
trying to get over the fence; upon which his master
seized him, and determined to cut his throat.
Fearing, however, that his knife might not do prompt
and effectual execution, and that the howls of the
dog might be increased during the process of
throat-cutting, he stayed his hand, and quietly
laying the fence down, succeeded in secreting the
family among the tall corn. Leaving them here,
he started for Wooster; and, when near the town, he
heard the morning gun fired by the soldiers in camp
at Wooster. Concluding that the firing must
proceed from an army of British and Indians, he
instantly changed his course, and started in
double-quick for the south, and was not heard of for
Early on the next morning after the receipt of
intelligence of the murders on the Black Fork, the
of the settlement met in council and determined to
build immediately a fort for the protection of the
families of the neighborhood. So, without
wasting a week or two in efforts to elect a chairman
or speaker of their body, they at once proceeded to
the erection of the fort, which was built after the
usual style of the day. Trees of the proper
size were felled by some, while others with their
ox-teams dragged them to their proper places.
The building was of two stories, the walls enlarging
form the base, so that the upper story projected two
feet beyond the lower story on all sides. In
the lower room the women and children were
quartered, while the men occupied the upper one, in
which port-holes were cut, through which to fire
their trusty rifles. After the erection of the
building, the space of one acre of ground was
surveyed off and inclosed with a palisade twelve or
fourteen feet high. This was constructed by
digging a trench four feet deep and then setting in
logs of the proper height, split once in two, and
set close together, the flat side out - thus
presenting a wall which could not readily be scaled.
But one place of ingress or egress was made; which,
after the horses and cattle of the settlement were
driven inside, was firmly closed, and in this
inclosure they remained the greater part of one
year. The fort was erected on land owned by
Vachel Metcalf, on an elevation that overlooked
all the immediate vicinity. The occupants of
the fort would go out during the day, and try to
raise corn and other vegetables - always being armed
THOMAS COLE immigrated to
Jackson Township from Fairfield County, Ohio, in
August, 1819. His
father had previously entered for him the southeast
quarter of section 8, being the same land upon which
he now resides. His family at this time
consisted of his wife and one son, (Stephen Cole,
who now resides upon a portion of the quarter above
Roughing it in the
The first night of their
arrival upon their land was passed by the family in
their wagon. On the second day a linen tent
was erected to afford shelter for the family until a
cabin could be constructed. His mare (the only
one he had) broke loose, and, after a two-mile
chase, Mr. Cole drove her into an angle
formed by a tree top and the fence of Martin Fast,
and from which she could not extricate herself.
In order to relieve her, he let down the fence, when
she passed into the field and again eluded his
efforts to secure her. There was blazed timber
leading to the house of Jonas H. Gierhart,
adn these blazes he followed, and procured another
horse for the purpose of tolling his own into a
stack yard, and thus enabling him to secure her.
This plan, after considerable delay, was successful.
By the time he had returned the borrowed horse to
Mr. Gierhart, however, and reached home with his
mare, the second day of his experience in wilderness
life was nearly closed. The third day was
Sunday, and was passed beneath their linen tent.
With the night came a heavy rain, and to add to
their discomfort, their child became ill. To
secure the little one from the rain which beat
through the canvas, Mr. Cole sat upright in
bed, with the covering resting upon his head, his
body thus forming a "center pole," and making a more
secure tent within the tent, until the storm had
abated. On the follow-
ing morning, his child was convalescent. The
succeeding days of the week, until Saturday, were
spent chiefly in collecting materials for his cabin.
On that day, by the aid of neighbors from his own
and adjacent townships, he had his cabin raised.
Several days elapsed, however, before the house was
sufficiently completed to afford shelter. The
family of his brother, Stephen Cole, occupied
the cabin with him during the first year.
About the commencement of October, Mr. Cole made
a visit, on horseback, to the house of Mordecai
Chilcote, in Orange Township, seven miles
distant, to procure a bag of oats for his horse.
While there his neighbor insisted upon Mr. Cole
visiting his potato field, and taking home a bag
partly filled. The detention thus caused
prevented his reaching home, as night overtook him
in the woods, and he found it impossible to proceed.
He had dismounted, and while engaged in searching
out the path, leading his horse meanwhile, the
saddle turned, unobserved by him, and the bag of
oats slid off. When he discovered his loss, he
made his beast fast to a tree, and returned to look
for his bag of oats, but his search was fruitless.
Taking his saddle from his horse, he placed it
beside a tree and used it as a pillow for his head,
until about midnight, as he supposed, when a rain
commenced falling, and, being thinly clad, he turned
the flaps of the saddle into a covering. When
day appeared, he recovered his lost bag of oats, and
pursued his travel homeward.
In the year 1840, Mr. Cole was licensed by the
Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church as a
local preacher, and his license has been renewed
annually since. Before being licensed as a
he had been for many years an exhorter in the
removed with his wife from Harrison County to what
is now Jackson Township, in March, 1816. His
father had previously entered the quarter upon which
Philip Glessner now resides. At this
date there were only six houses upon Muddy Fork,
which were occupied by the families of Messrs.
David Noggle, Thomas Johnson, Cornelius Dorland,
Isaac Matthews, Benjamin Emmons, and
JAMES A. DINSMORE,
then of York County, Pennsylvania, in February,
1814, entered the south half of section 26, in
Jackson Township, where he now resides. He had
previously traveled from Wooster, in company with
Cornelius Dorland, who was moving a family into
JONAS H. GIERHART,
an immigrant from Maryland, removed to Jackson
Township on the quarter section upon a part of which
is now situated the town of Polk, in July, 1817.
The township was then unorganized, and formed a part
of Perry. At the first election after the
organization of the township, Charles Hoy and
himself were elected justices of the peace.
During the first year of his residence in the
township, he traveled three days in search of his
estray horses, without meeting a human being or
habitation. This place, and the country around
it for several miles, was without a white inhabitant
- his nearest neighbor being William Bryan,
residing about two miles south
of him; while on the same range of townships north,
he believes there was not a single white family
between him and the lake. When he came to the
country with his wife and child, he placed the two
latter in temporary charge of the family of
Martin Hester, (being the place owned by
David and Henry Fluke,) in Orange Township,
about three miles distant from the tract he owned.
The land above mentioned was the tract he owned.
The land above mentioned was in its wild condition,
not a tree or shrub being cut, and of course without
a cabin to afford him and his little family shelter.
On the first day he made a small clearing, and
preparation for raising a cabin. This work he
done himself, although utterly inexperienced in the
use of the woodman's axe, as he had never in his
life chopped a cord of wood, made a fence rail, or
cut down or even deadened a tree, having previously
worked only upon farms log cultivated. On the
second day his wife requested to visit the home her
husband was engaged in preparing, and accompany him
to it with their child. They accordingly sat
out on horseback, and in due time reached the place,
when he proceeded with his
work, and Mrs. Gierhart employed herself with
her needle and the care of their little child.
One of the mares had been belled and hobbled, and,
with her mate, was permitted to range for such food
as the woods afforded. Thus the day nearly
passed, and toward evening the sound of the bell had
disappeared, and Mr. Gierhart, taking in his
arms his little child, and leaving his wife under
the shelter of a tree, started in search of his
beasts. His animals had wandered a much
greater distance than he had supposed; but he
finally recovered the one that had been hobbled,
and, mounting it with his child, sat out on his
return to his wife. He had not
traveled far before he discovered that he was unable
to find the blazed timber; and concluded it the
safer way to make for the Jerome Fork, where he
would be enabled to intersect the trail that led
from Martin Hester's to his land. On his way
he met an old hunter, named John McConnell,
to whom he explained his situation, and asked aid in
finding his way back to his wife. Mr.
McConnell gave it as his opinion that he could
not that night reach the place, but proposed that he
remain at the house of Mr. Hester, then not
far distant, until morning. On their way to
Hester's, they struck the blazes which led to
the place where he had parted with his wife; and,
committing his child to the care of Mr. McConnell,
with directions to leave it with Mrs. Hester,
he determined, against the protest of Mr.
McConnell, who assured him of the impossibility
of success, (as night was then rapidly approaching,)
to go to the relief of his desolate wife. He
accordingly pressed forward on his way, guided by
the blazed trees, and continued until the darkness
rendered the marks upon the trees undistinguishable.
Here was before him a "night of terror" indeed -
such a one as he had never passed, and never dreamed
that he would be called upon to pass. The
thought of a helpless wife, in the depth of a
wilderness of which the savage beast was the almost
undisputed monarch, and no possible hope of
affording any relief before the dawn of another day,
was enough to wring any soul with agony.
Despite the darkness, he plunged blindly forward a
few rods in what he supposed might be the right
direction, and then, impressed with the utter
hopelessness of proceeding farther, halted; and,
raising a voice, the power of which was made
terrible by his agony, called to his wife.
Its echoes reached her, and were recognized.
She sent forth her answer, but her voice having so
much less compass than that of her husband, the
sound did not reach his ear. In his despair he
laid himself down beside a tree, and maintained his
sleepless vigils until the return of the morning,
when he resumed his search, and finally came upon
the trail he was seeking. Pursuing it rapidly,
he soon reached Mrs. Gierhart, who had wisely
maintained her position throughout the night,
notwithstanding the distraction of mind which her
anxiety for the safety of her husband and child, her
own lonely situation, and the distant howling of the
wolves, were all calculated to inspire. Some
time after their joyful meeting, and while they were
yet recounting to each other the experience of the
preceding night, their ears were saluted by the
blowing of horns, and soon they were met by
neighbors, who had been alarmed by Mr. McConnell,
and who had started forth at the first dawn of day
in pursuit of the lost husband and wife.
entered the southeast quarter of section 32, Jackson
Township, in the year 1816, and removed to it with
his family in April, 1820. When he removed to
the township he had no family other than his wife.
The township, although it had been inhabited by a
few white families four or five years, and had been
organized about a year, was yet sparsely settled.
Although his neighbors were few in number, he refers
to them as equal, in morality, virtue, and
hospitality, to any among whom he ever lived.
In this respect the county has not improved in the
ration of increase of population and wealth.
FREDERICK A. HINE
emigrated from Butler County,
Pennsylvania, and removed to the land in Jackson
Township, which he had previously entered, being the
southeast quarter of section 11, in the year 1829.
His family consisted of himself and nine children.
Mr. Hine and his sons Charles and
John are the only surviving members of the
original family who now reside in Jackson Township -
the others being dead or removed.
removed with his family to Jackson Township in May,
1817, and, in company with John Meason,
entered the southwest quarter of section 2, and the
northwest quarter of section 11, in Jackson
Township. His family at this time consisted of
his wife and one child, (Joseph Hoy late of
New Orleans.) He had previously resided in
Salt Works in Jackson
During the years 1817, '18,
and '19, evidences of salt water having been
discovered on the land above described, Messrs.
Hoy and Meason sunk a well about four
hundred and sixty feet in depth, and made other
preparations for the manufacture of salt. The
enterprise, after a large expenditure of money and
time, ,proved unsuccessful, as the quantity of water
procured, although of a good quality, was
insufficient to justify a continuance in the
business; and, in 1819, Mr. Hoy disposed of
his interest in the land and salt works to
Marshall & Morton, and purchased of Abram
Shock the southeast quarter of section 27,
Jackson Township, being the land now owned.
by Henry Myers. In 1822 he purchased of
the heirs of John Smith the northwest quarter
of section 34, upon which he has since resided, and
to which he has since added seventy-five and a half
Population of Jackson
Township in 1817.
At the date of the arrival
of Mr. Hoy in the township, the
following-named persons were the heads of the
families that constituted its population, viz.:
Isaac Lyons, John Jackson, Daniel and John
Davout, and Noah Long. The family
of either Isaac Lyons or Noah Long
were the first inhabitants. Of the heads of
families above named, not one is now a resident of
the township. All excepting two, namely,
John Jackson and John Davoult, are known
to be deceased. About one year since, Mr.
Jackson was a resident of Knoxville, Illinois,
and is probably yet alive.
A Fatiguing Night's
In March, 1819, after his
purchase of the quarter in section 27, (which was in
a wilderness condition,) at the close of the day he
had raised his cabin, (hands to
obtain which were procured from neighborhoods
as far distant as where Rowsburg now stands,) he
undertook to return to his family, a distance of
five miles. He had only blazed trees to guide
him. When he had accomplished about half the
distance, a violent snow-storm and darkness suddenly
arrested his progress. He undertook to find
the blazed trees by feeling with his hands; but soon
found this impracticable, and came to the conclusion
that he would be either compelled to spend the
inclement night in the forest or search out the bed
of Wolf Run, and follow its course to the Muddy
Fork, and then up the
latter stream to his home, which stood upon its
banks. By the devious course of these streams,
the distance was nine or ten miles, over fallen
timber and brush, and encountering the whole route a
violent storm; and, when he finally reached home, it
was between twelve and one o'clock in the morning.
He found Mrs. Hoy sitting up, unable to
sleep, and terrified with the fear that her husband
might fall a victim to the inclement weather or
savage beasts. Mr. Hoy had seen service
in the war of 1812, and had endured some other
hardships; but he says that never, before or since,
has he performed a more exhausting march.
Character of the
During the first three or
four years the Indians camped annually in the
neighborhood of Mr. Hoy's residence -
frequently within sight of his house. It would
be during the season of hunting and trapping.
To him and his family they were always kind,
hospitable, and scrupulously honest. Mr.
Hoy had once lost in the woods a
pocket-handkerchief. It was found by an
Indian, who at once sought the owner and restored it
to him. This, he thinks, was a characteristic
instance of Indian integrity. They were of
immense service to such of the white settlers as
were not practiced in the use of the rifle, in
furnishing them with wild game. Their cunning
and quickness at repartee were often amusing.
An instance is given of an Indian who had been
making a purchase of flour at Stibbs's mill.
It was in the year 1818, during a time when
considerable quantities of fraudulent paper money
were in circulation. The Indian had placed in
the hands of the miller a note on a
solvent bank in payment of his flour, and received,
among other small notes, a dollar issued by the Owl
Creek Bank, at Mt. Vernon - an institution which was
then exploded. Upon the note was a vignette of
an owl. The Indian retained all the notes
except the one upon the Owl Creek institution, and
this he promptly returned to the miller. The
latter affecting surprise, inquired what was the
objection to that note? To which the
Indian, pointing to the picture of the owl, promptly
replied, "Too much t'hoo! t'hoo! t'hoo!"
In the spring of 1819, the family of Mr. Hoy
removed to their new cabin, on section 27. It
was then without a floor, and otherwise unfinished,
and a snow, which fell a few days after their
arrival, was forced by the wind through the open
doorway and large crevices between the logs, freely
into the building. Three poles were driven
into the ground and a temporary tent constructed
inside the building for the shelter of the two
children, while Mr. Hoy employed himself in
preparing the floor puncheons, the weight of which
was such as to require the assistance of Mrs. Hoy
to aid in conveying to the house and adjusting to
their places. The woods, during the first
years, abounded with savage beasts and the dreaded
rattlesnake; but with all these and other drawbacks,
there were substantial joys which compensated for
JOHN KEEN, SR.,
immigrated to Jackson Township from Centre County,
Pennsylvania, in November, 1828, and selected for
his future home the northwest quarter of section 16.
In 1830 or 1831 he purchased the northeast quarter
of the same section,
upon which he resided until the time of his decease,
which occurred on the 8th of March, 1862, in the
eighty-sixth year of his age. When he removed
to the township, his family consisted of his wife
and six children - two sons (John and
Daniel) and four daughters. The Ashland
Union, of March 19, 1862, contains an obituary,
from which the following is extracted: -
"The deceased was born in
Berks County, Pennsylvania, on the 24th of
September, 1776, and experience in his infancy the
hardships of the revolution, as in his old age he
saw the perils of his country in dissolution.
His father, Jacob Keen, had emigrated
westward from the older settlements, but was
compelled to flee with his family from the pursuit
of hte savages. In February, 1798, he deceased
joined in wedlock with his surviving widow, whose
maiden name was Catharine Derscham. The
two lived and kept house together for a period of
sixty-four years, during which time (excepting the
last few weeks) they were both able to perform the
ordinary duties of their household. In the
fall of 1828 the deceased left his residence in
Centre County, Pennsylvania, and emigrated with his
family to this township, where he has ever since
resided. His neighbors several times bestowed
upon him the office of justice of the peace,
in which capacity he served with honesty of purpose
and independence of judgment. He left behind a
large family of children, grand-children, and
great-grandchildren. In early infancy he was
baptized and became, upon arriving at the years of
discretion, a member of the German Reformed Church.
He was very steadfast in his purpose upon matters
appertaining to the church or congregation of
which he was a member, and although he had to smite
his breast and exclaim, 'Have mercy, Lord, upon me,
poor sinner,' he yet died in the full enjoyment of
the hope of everlasting life through Christ his
emigrated from Pennsylvania to Perry township in the
spring of 1823, where he remained until the spring
of the year following, when he purchased the
southeast quarter of section 26, in Jackson
Township, which land he entered upon and improved,
and has since made his home.
immigrated to Jackson Township, from Ontario County,
New York, in July, 1819. He entered, during
the same month and year, the southwest quarter of
section 3, and the east half of the southeast
quarter of section 4. His family at this time
consisted of his wife and one child. John
Meason, who had removed to the township the year
previous, was his nearest neighbor.
Condition of the
Country in 1819.
The families of Mr. Lee
and John Lafler were conveyed from the State
of New York to Jackson Township by two ox teams.
From Cleveland, southwest, the road was not cut out
- the travelers being guided most of their way by
the "blazed" trees. The journey from Cleveland
to Jackson Township was made in five and a half days
- three of which were occupied between Medina and
the place of their destination. Much of their
delays were caused by tim-
ber fallen across their track, which they were
compelled to cut and roll away. One night
overtook the party at a point within what they
supposed to be about a mile of Medina. Not
being able to proceed with their wagon, they removed
the yokes from their cattle and turned them loose,
and then undertook to make their way on foot to "the
town." The night was so black - the heavens
being covered with masses of heavy clouds - that it
soon became impossible to find the trail, and there
was every probability that the families would be
compelled to remain in the woods. The women
divested their feet of their shoes and stockings,
and traced the path by the sense of feeling in their
bare feet. After two hours of patient and
anxious toil, they found brush and other obstacles
which indicated that they were in the vicinity of a
"clearing." The men raised repeated shouts,
hoping that the inmates of some cabin might be
within the sound of their voices and come to their
relief. At length one of the women raised her
voice, and it was answered. They were soon
within the only house (made of hewn logs) of
the town of Medina, and within five minutes a rain
commenced falling, which continued throughout the
night. About midway between Medina and
Harrisville, a bolt of their wagon broke, and they
were compelled to come to a halt. They turned
their cattle loose, giving them some salt near their
wagon, and the two men, each with a child in his
arms, pushed forward, on foot, to Harrisville, where
they had hoped to find a blacksmith shop - but none
being there, they were compelled to seek one in
Congress Township, a distance of about four miles
farther. The two families finally reached
Mr. Meason's place, where they obtained leave to
a shanty of about ten feet square, until they could
erect cabins of their own. when they had their
timber on the ground, ready to raise, such was the
scarcity of hands by reason of the sparseness of the
settlement, that between three and four days were
occupied in raising the walls.
Mode of Travel.
There were very few horses
in the country, and comparatively little use for
them, as there was not surplus produce for market,
and no attainable markets, even had there been
horses, wagons, and roads, suitable for
transportation. Religious meetings (which,
there being no church buildings, were always held at
private houses) and social visits were made on foot
- men and women often traveling a distance of five
or six miles (carrying children in their arms) for
these purposes. The family of Mr. Lee
frequently exchanged visits with friends at
Harrisville, a distance of ten miles. Mr.
Lee has often traveled from his home to Wooster
and back, a distance of forty miles, within a single
day. In two instances, himself, Mr. Lafler,
and Mr. Meason, were required to attend
"militia musters" on the Big (Blachleyville)
Prairie, a distance of twenty miles. They were
ordered to be at the place of rendezvous at ten
o'clock a.m., and would be dismissed at four o'clock
PM., This travel of forty miles, and at least
five hours' drill, were accomplished on foot within
the same day and night. The men of the present
generation who occupy this country often complain of
hardship and privation. Are their complaints
Loss of the Son of
The body of this child, an
account of whose loss is mentioned by Mr. Slocum
and Captain Parmely, in another part of this
work, was found upon the premises of Mr. Lee,
about a quarter of a mile north of the present town
of Perrysburg, and near the farm now owned by Job
King. The farm upon which Mr. Durfee
resided is in Jackson Township, and is now owned by
John Buchanan, and occupied by John
Vanosdell, Jr. Stephen Souls, the uncle of
the child, was at that time an unmarried man, and
made his home with Mr. Durfee. The
latter became a Mormon, and died among that people
while they occupied Nauvoo, Illinois.
On the evening of the day the boy was lost, two girls,
daughters of a neighbor in Sullivan Township, on
their return home from Thomas Greer's, heard,
on their way, what appeared to be the hoarse moans
of a child; but fearing that it might proceed from a
wild animal, they continued on their way.
Mr. Durfee's house lay in their path, and
calling there, the child. Their conclusion at
once was that the voice they had heard proceeded
from the lost boy; and the father immediately
started for the spot indicated - heard distinctly
the sound, but his agitation and bewilderment
finally traced it to the tree tops, and the voice
becoming undistinguishable from the noise of the
rain falling upon the dry leaves, he abandoned his
search in despair, and returned home.
immigrated to Jackson Township, from Trumbull
County, in March, 1818. His wife
and six children then constituted his family.
He purchased of Joseph Alexander the west
part of the southwest quarter of section 21, upon
which he has continued to reside.
Mr. Matthews was chosen captain of the first
military company that was organized in the township.
RICKEL emigrated from Somerset
County, Pennsylvania, in October, 1817, and,
purchased of his brother Matthias, the sixty
acres in the northwest quarter of section 26, which
he improved, and upon which he has since resided.
His family consisted of his wife and three children,
viz., Jacob Sophia, and
Michael. His eldest
son, Jacob, was killed by the fall of a tree,
during a storm, in the year 1832.
There were few of the early settlers who encountered
more adverse fortune than Mr. Rickel during
the first years of his residence in Jackson
Township. His health had been much impaired by
protracted illness, and he had but a small portion
of this world's goods. His health, however,
became renewed by the coarse diet which necessity
compelled him to use, (composed principally of corn
bread and sassafras tea,) and by his hard labor.
To his regular and temperate habits, he attributes
his prolonged life and present vigor of body and
mind. He is now (March, 1862) in his
emigrated from Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, to
Jackson Township, in March, 1818, having entered the
northwest quarter of section 26. His family at
this time consisted of his wife and three
children, namely, Samuel, George and
Michael. The land above described he
improved, and has continued to make it his home.
Mr. Rickel purchased corn for his first year's
supply five miles east of Wooster, and paid one
dollar and twenty-five cents per bushel, although
the corn was soft and mouldy. It was, however,
the best the country afforded at that time.
After the first year he raised his own supplies.
He cut the road from Cornelius Dorland's to
his place, when he removed his family.
emigrated from Washington County, Pennsylvania, to
Jackson Township, and purchased of Mr. Moury
the quarter section now owned by the heirs of
John Baker. His family at this time
consisted of his wife and the following-named
children: John A., Nancy, Jane, William,
George V., and Robert. On the 29th
of March, 1829, Mr. Smilie died at the age of
sixty-five years. The only surviving member of
the family now residing in Ashland County is John
A. Smilie, of Perry Township.
emigrated from Dauphin County, Pennsylvania, to
Jackson Township, in May 1824. His business is
that of a boot and shoemaker, which he has
prosecuted since his residence in the township.
He now resides on the Perrysburg and Polk Road,
about midway between those places.
emigrated, with his father's family, from Washington
County, Pennsylvania, to Perry,
and from thence removed with his wife to Jackson
Township, in November, 1829. He settled upon
the east part of the southwest quarter of section 21
- land which he had previously purchased of
Joseph Alexander. Upon this land he
continues to reside with his family.
The first Pioneer of Jackson
Mrs. Shissler, who
is the daughter of the late Noah Long, is of
the opinion that John Chilcote was the first
white inhabitant of Jackson Township. He
resided upon the place recently owned by the late
Jacob Oxenrider. Her father's, she
believes, was the second family in the township.
Mr. Long entered and resided upon the quarter
section now owned by Frederick Ritter.
emigrated from Maryland to Jackson Township, in
April, 1828, and purchased of Michael Sugars
one hundred and ten acres in section 18 - being the
same land which he improved and made his home until
the day of his death, the 6th of March, 1849, at the
age of seventy-four years and ten months. When
Mr. Sprinkle removed to the township his
family consisted of his wife and eight children, the
only one of whom now surviving in Ashland County is
William H. Sprinkle, who owns and occupies
the old homestead.
Markets in the year 1830.
Prior to 1830 there were no
markets at the lake for grain or other farm produce.
During this year, however, a demand was created, by
a large immigration to Michigan, for produce, and
wheat at the lake
ports this year sold at 56 cents per bushel; oats 22
cents. Charleston, at the mouth of Black
River, was regarded as the most favorable point for
reaching the lake, for the reason that the streams
were less difficult to cross than those which
intervened between here and Cleveland. The
farmers were greatly elated in consequence of the
prices of this year, and as the demand was expected
to continue another season, an unusually large
breadth of ground was sown in wheat during the fall
of 1830; but the expectations of farmers were not
realized, as in 1831 wheat fell to 40 cents per
bushel, and for oats there was no demand.
The first Fruit
had been six or seven years in Jackson before he had
seen an apple the product of the township.
Johnny Appleseed's nurseries were the main
reliance of the country, but he was capable of
supplying but a small portion of the demands made