OHIO GENEALOGY EXPRESS

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Delaware County, Ohio

History & Genealogy

20th century history of Delaware County, Ohio
and representative citizens
Chicago, Ill. :: Biographical Pub. Co., 1908 by James R. Lytle
Transcribed by Sharon Wick

CHAPTER XVIII.
TOWNSHIPS AND TOWNS

Settlement and Organization of the Townships - Settlement and Founding of the Towns
Sketches of Ashley, Galena, Sunbury, Ostrander, Lewis Center, Powell, Radnor, and other towns.
Pg. 435

TOWNSHIPS:

 

RADNOR TOWNSHIP.

     Radnor, one of the three original townships of Delaware County, rich and fertile in its soil, substantial and progressive in its citizenship, takes second rank to no farming community in this section of the State.  Peopled from its infancy, largely by men of the sturdy Welsh race, the development and improvement of the land and the establishment of schools and churches was accomplished with greater rapidity than is recorded in the experience of most virgin territories.  Henry Perry, of Angelsey, South Wales, accompanied by his young sons, Ebenezer and Levi, was the first white settler, coming in the fall of 1803, hut it was not until July of the following year that he became a property owner.  He purchased 100 acres of land fur $150 of David Pugh, an extensive land owner, at whose solicitation he had come west from Philadelphia to make settlement.
     David Pugh, leaving his native country, Radnorshire, South Wales, crossed the ocean in 1801, and took up his residence in Baltimore, Maryland.  The following year he went to Philadelphia, where he met Dr. Samuel Jones, who had a warrant for 4,000 acres of United States Military land, in Township 6, Range 20, as designated by the United States Survey.  The result of the acquaintance was the employment of young Pugh as an emissary to go west and learn something of the character and value of the land owned by the doctor.  Early in 1802 he left Philadelphia and after an adventurous trip on horseback, lasting two months, arrived at Franklinton, Franklin County, the settlement nearest the land he sought.  With an experienced backwoodsman as guide, he made his way northward through an unbroken wilderness to the land, located in the township to which he subsequently gave the name of Radnor, in honor of his native country.  The name however is of English origin, the Welsh name of that country being "Maesyfed."  After a thorough examination, David Pugh returned to Philadelphia and made a favorable report to Dr. Jones.  In the city of Philadelphia, Mar. 2, 1803, for a consideration of $2,650, a transfer was made to David Pugh, of the tract of 4,000 acres, excepting 50 acres given to David Lodwig, and 50 acres donated as a "glebe" for a Baptist or a Presbyterian minister who would locate in the proposed settlement.
     Henry Perry, who had but recently arrived in this country, was persuaded by Mr. Pugh to make settlement in this wild country, which he and his two sons did in the fall of 1803, as before mentioned, leaving his wife and two small children in Baltimore.  The journey was made on foot, and after many trials and hardships they arrived on the Pugh land.  A small clearing was made, a cabin erected and the following spring crops planted on land which they had cleared during the winter.  Leaving his young sons (Ebenezer being fifteen and Levi thirteen years old at the time of their arrival) in possession of the cabin, Henry Perry returned to Baltimore for the remainder of his family, which in the early summer he brought West, making the journey in a cart.  In 1804, David Pugh returned and had his land surveyed into 100 acre tracts, except 150 acres in the center, which were laid out in town lots, the town to be known as New Baltimore.

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Others who came in 1804 and purchased of Mr. Pugh, were Richard Tibbott, John Watkins, John Jones, Hugh Kyle, and David Marks.  The year of 1805 witnessed the coming of the following families: Evan Jenkins, David Davids, Richard Hoskins, David Davies, and John MinterDavid Pugh went to his native land in 1806, and in 1807 returned with his sisters, Mary and Hannah, wives of David Perry and John Philips, respectively.  The same year, came Mrs. Eleanor Lodwig with her children.  Thomas, John and Letitia; and in 1808, Benjamin Kepler Elijah Adams. Thomas Warren, and John Foos, came to Radnor with their families.
     Radnor Township was created at the time the county was organized, but remained as then constituted only until the meeting of the first Commissioners Court, when on June 15, 1808, the township of Marlborough was created out of Radnor territory.  Thompson and Troy were later segregated from Radnor and established as separate townships, leaving the latter, in its dimensions, about ten miles north and south and from three to five miles in width.
     During the War of 1812, the settlers were kept in turmoil, being in constant fear of attack from the Indians.  A block house was erected on the farm of Benjamin Kepler as a retreat for the people, but when an attack became most threatening, many fled to the fort near Franklinton.  However, the expected attack never materialized.  After the war had closed and peace and safety assured, there was a great influx of new settlers, among them being Mrs. Wasson and her sons; Joseph Dunlap; Samuel Cooper; Robert and John McKinney; Obed Taylor; James and Matthew Fleming; John Jones; Walter Perry. Sr., with his sons, Walter, William, Edward, and Roger; then Thomas Jones and sons - John A. and Thomas; Ellis Jones, David E. Jones, Edward Evans, John Owen, Roger Watkins, Watkin Watkins, William Watkins, John and Humphrey Humphreys, Benjamin Herbert, Morgan D. Morgans, the pioneer blacksmith of the settlement: J. R. Jones, a weaver by trade: J. Jones, a mason; John Cadwalader, Rev. David Calwalader, David Lloyd, John Davies, a cooper; Mrs. Mary Chidlaw, with her family; and Robert and Stephen Thomas.  Most of these were of Welsh birth.  By the time the early thirties were reached, practically all of the lands of the township was owned by actual settlers, and it is a notable fact that few farms of the township have ever been subjected to tax sales.
     The first white child born in the county was David Perry, Jr., followed closely by Mary Jones, afterward Mrs. Warner, in 1807.  The first death was that of the mother of Hugh Kyle, but there is no record of the date; she was buried in the old cemetery at Radnor.  The first marked grave in that cemetery was that of David Davids, who died Sept. 10, 1810.  Elijah Adams was the first justice of the peace in Radnor, and Thomas Warren conducted the first tavern, starting in 1811 in a two story log building.
     The village of Delhi, which has been known as Radnor since the advent of the Columbus & Toledo ( Hocking Valley) Railroad, was laid out in August, 1833, for Edward Evans on his farm, near what has been the town site of New Baltimore, before Thomas Warren converted it into a farm.  The first house on the town site of Radnor was built in 1805 where the Welsh Methodist Church now stands, and was occupied by Morgan Morgan, the blacksmith.  The first store was kept by Obed TaylorThomas Taylor was the first postmaster as well as the first tavern keeper.  Delhi Lodge No. 250, I. O. O. F., was installed there May 17, 1854, with five charter members, and grew rapidly.
     The time the first school was started or by whom it was taught is not known, but it was during the early days of the settlement.  In 1821 there were three log school houses in the township, one on the farm of John Philips in the southern part, another on the farm of John Dildine. centrally located, and the third near the old block house. There are at present eight school districts, with substantial school buildings, and a competent corps of instructors employed.
     The first organized religious society in Radnor Township, was the Baptist, which had its beginning May 4, 1816, in a log school-

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house.  Elder Drake was the first regular pastor, preaching in both Welsh and English.  They erected first a log church near the burying ground, and regardless of denomination or religious belief, the settlers assisted in the building, each bringing a hewed log and assisting in the raising.  In 1833, near the site of the log church, a stone building was built, and in 1867 a fine edifice was constructed of brick, representing an outlay of $4,500.
     The Methodist Episcopal Church had representation there from the first, and in 1808 an itinerant minister preached the first sermon in the township, in the house of Henry Perry.  Several years later a few of the families met regularly at the house of Elijah Adams and services were held.  It was not until 1838 that a frame house of worship was built and the congregation supplied with regular preaching.  In 1855 a brick meeting house was erected.
     The Radnor Welsh Congregational Church had its beginning about 1818, when meetings were held in the cabins of the settlers, the language spoken being invariably Welsh.  In 1820, Rev. James Davies organized a church in the home of John Jones, and thereafter was not without a pastor for more than a brief period.  In 1841 a frame church building was erected and in 1842 was dedicated.  In the middle sixties a brick meeting house was erected at a cost of $3,000.
     The Radnor Presbyterian Church dates its organization back to 1819, when the Rev. Joseph Hughes of Delaware accepted it as one of his charges.  A hewed log meeting-house was built in a sugar grove on the farm of Joseph Dunlap.  The erection of a stone church building was begun in 1840 but not completed until 1849.  In the interim, the log church was abandoned and there was no pastor for several years.  Through the efforts of Rev. S. R. Hughes, the church resumed its proper place in the world.
     The Protestant Episcopal Church was organized in 1836 by Rev. Abram Edwards, and a house of worship was erected but its existence was limited to a very few years.
     The Presbyterian Church was organized in 1848, largely through the untiring efforts of Rev. Henry Shedd and in 1854 a brick church building was constructed.  It thrived and prospered from its inception.
     The Welsh Presbyterian Church was organized in 1850 by the Welsh settlers who were of the Calvinistic Methodist faith before leaving their native land.  Their church creed being almost identical with the Presbyterian in America, the church was given the latter name.  The first pastor was Rev. Hugh Roberts, and the Welsh language has always been used in preaching in that church.  A church edifice was erected in 1877.
     The Radnor Sunday School Union, the first Sunday school in Radnor Township, was established Apr. 18, 1829, and continued most actively for many years, but finally was disbanded because Sunday Schools had been established in the respective Churches.  Primers, spellers and the Bible were the text books used and the good accomplished by this organization in improving the minds of the young, morally and educationally, can scarcely tie estimated or imagined.  Of the members of this union, six became ministers of the Gospel.
     The Radnor Township officials in 1908 were: James P. Osborne, justice of the peace; Charles S. Gallant and Edgar Jones, trustees; Charles E. Davis, clerk; Perry J. Griffith, treasurer; Charles R. Watkins assessor; M. Mays, constable.
     The following are the business houses of Radnor: E. I. Jones, general store; I. W. Holmes, general store; Benjamin Pritchard, blacksmith; G. T. Wolfley, pastmaster; Radnor Elevator Company, dealers in grain, hay, seed, hardware, farm implements and coal; Perry J. Griffith, livery; W. T. Roberts, hotel and livery; T. K. Jones, M. D.; H. Edwards, M. D.; T. W. Disbennett, tile-mill and sawmill.

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