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OHIO GENEALOGY EXPRESS

A Part of Genealogy Express

 

Welcome to
Pickaway County, Ohio
History & Genealogy

 

History of Pickaway County
Source:  History of Franklin & Pickaway Counties, Ohio
Illustrations and Biographical Sketches
Published by Williams Bros. 1880

 


CIRCLEVILLE
 

* CIRCLEVILLE   
       * ORIGIN OF NAME & DESCRIPTION OF ANCIENT MOUNDS
       * CHURCHES

       * SCHOOLS
       * CEMETERIES
       * MERCANTILE INTERESTS
       * MANUFACTURING INTERESTS
       * SOCIETIES
       * TOWNSHIP
            *ORIGINAL PROPRIETORSHIP
            * SETTLEMENTS
            * INCORPORATION OF THE TOWNSHIP OF CIRCLEVILLE
            * INDUSTRIAL PURSUITS IN THE TOWNSHIP.
            * THE MEDICAL PROFESSION OF CIRCLEVILLE
       *
BIOGRAPHIES

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 MERCANTILE INTERESTS.

     A complete history of the mercantile interests of the place would embrace a sketch of all the leading merchants, both past and present, that have ever done business here in any department of trade.  We regret that we have no space for such a history, but must content ourselves with little more than a bare enumeration of the individuals and firms now engaged in three of the principal branches of merchandise.

I. DRY GOODS.

     Those engaged at present in this business are the following:  Wolfley & Hartmeyer, Delaplaine & Doane, J. Darst, W. S. Jacobson & Co., D. Peirce, Wallace & Bro., J. Weill, Wallace & Schleyer, and L. ABt. & Co.  Of these, Wolfley & Hartmeyer represent the oldest establishment, dating back to about the year 1829.  The name of Darst has been prominent in the mercantile history of Circleville for many years.  The first who bore it in that capacity were two brothers - Isaac and William P. Darst - who established themselves here, in the dry goods trade, in 1832, both having previously been clerks for Bradshaw & Turney, pioneer merchants of Circleville, as early as 1816.  They were brotehrs of Joseph Darst, for many years a shoe merchant in this place.  The present J. Darst is the survivor of two cousins of the same name - Jacob Darst - who were in partnership here for a long time, having become successors to Darst & Hedges.  The elder of the two cousins (now deceased) was the father of Miss Lillie C. Darst, editor and proprietor of the Circleville Herald.

II.   HARDWARE

     The only ones doing a general hardware business at present in Circleville are the following:  Cyrus Benford, W. A. Ensworth & Co., and B. H. Moore.  Of these, Benford had the oldest store, having been established about the year 1845.

III.   DRUGS.

     The druggists now doing business here are the following:  A. H. Fickardt, W. W. Ballard, Evans & Krimmel, and H. E. Grand-Girard.  Mr. Fickhardt came here in 1839, and his establishment dates back to 1830, being the oldest drug store in the city.  He is the proprietor of an excellent tonic medicine called "Angelica Bitters," from the principal ingredient, and "Poor Man's Tonic," from the low price at which it is sold.

BANKS.

     Of these, there have been six of a public character.  The first, known as the Bank of Circleville, was organized in the fall of 1834, under a special act of the legislature, passed March 3d, of the same year, with a capital of $200,000, having for its commissioners Joseph Olds, Samuel RogersN. S. Gregg, Andrew Huston, William Renick, sr., William Renick, jr., Elias Florence and Samuel Lybrand, who, on the first Monday in June, opened the books for subscriptions to the stock.  During the twenty years it did business, it had three presidents, viz.:  Joseph Olds, N. S. Gregg and Joel Franklin; and two cashiers, of whom Hoel Lawrence was the first, and his son, Hoel K. Lawrence, the second.  For a period of about seventeen years, the bank was under the able direction, and advanced to a high degree of prosperity.  At length, in 1853, the elder Lawrence died, an event which was soon followed by a negotiation for the transfer of a controlling interest to some new parties, and the consequent resignation of its judicious president, N. S. Gregg.  Thenceforward its welfare waned, and, in one of the months of 1854, it failed.
     On sixteenth of August, 1839, books were opened by John Barr, Joseph Shoemaker and John Renick, three of the twelve commissioners, for subscriptions to the stock of the second bank, whose act of incorporation reached back to Jan. 14, 1818, also entitled the Bank of Circleville, having an authorized capital of $300,000, with right to commenced between when $150,000 were subscribed and fifteen percent, thereof in, and the governor's certificate procured.  It would appear that there was not much readiness on the part of more than a few of the citizens of the county to become shareholders, and only after non-residents of the county and State entered their names for the deficient sum, was the organization perfected.  A Mr. Brown, whose given name can not be recalled, a resident of New York, was elected the president, and one Charles Cornwell, the cashier.  For reasons, which seem not to have been made public, the governor of Ohio declined to certify that the bank had complied with the provisions of the statutes, and, it being deemed important that this official declaration by the bank should have a verification by disinterested parties, the board appointed E. B. Olds and P. N. White to make examination of the books and to count the funds.  They, having complied with the request, reported that they found the institution in possession of $23,000, gold and silver, a sum $500 in excess of the fifteen per cent, necessary to have before operations could be begun legally.  There may be now no one living who knows just how long the said $23,000 was held as a real basis for a two-fold, or more, circulation, but two or three individuals yet survive who have always believed that another bank were creditors therefor, and that the loan was of short duration.  However that may be, on the sixth of April, 1840, business with the public began; whether in sin, to bring forth iniquity, or in honesty, to bear good fruit, the current sentiment of the day got into no controversy.  Suffice it to say, that not twelve months elapsed before president number one gave place to number two, and the first cashier to the second.  Seymour G. Renick becoming the successor of the one, and William McCulloch that of the other.  But the ebb and flow of affairs did not improve.  The notes of the bank were a source of annoyance.  As children, they had too warm affection for their parents, and back to them they would continually go.  At length an hour of paralysis came, and on the morning of the fourteenth of April, 1842, after an asthmatic existence of two years and eight days, it expired.  Its worthy incumbent cashier was humiliated, and, for a little while, became a recluse.  It happened that some of the directors were small depositors, and felt that their balances needed attention.  The dejected officials who held the keys of the vault was visited, and importuned therefor, and on the plea of a desire to take an inventory of the contents of the safe, the keys were surrendered.  The repository was soon opened, and the ledger examined.  A found himself a creditor for one hundred dollars, B for two hundred dollars, and C for three hundred dollars.  There must be no loss to them.  The trunks were found to be replete with the bills of the corporation, but to contain no other.  "What per cent, of their face will they probably bring in the open market?" was the query.  Fifty cents on the dollar became the estimate.  "Then," said they, "let us take enough of them, at those figures, to square accounts."  So doing, the Bnak of Circleville, ear-marked "the old," was left to dance on the sea of public opinion as best she could; and on she went, drifting for twenty-nine years, until, at length, by the weight of the last judicial determination, she went down to join the kindred dead.

 

 

 

 

CANAL BUSINESS.

 

FIRE DEPARTMENT

 

MANUFACTURING INTERESTS.

     These, for a town of seven thousand inhabitants, are very well represented in Circleville.  We begin with

THE SCIOTO MACHINE WORKS.

 

CIRCLEVILLE TANNERY.

 

PORK PACKING HOUSES.

 

THE SWEET-CORN CANNING AND DRYING ESTABLISHMENT.

 

THE GAS WORKS.

 

THE BROOM-CORN INTEREST.

 

THE PLOW MANUFACTORY.

 

OTHER FACTORIES ENUMERATED.

 

DEFUNCT MANUFACTORIES.

 

MASONRY.*

 

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