This township, by location in the original survey of
the Reserve, was known as township seven in range three, the
townships numbering from the south line of the Reserve north, and
the ranges from the Pennsylvania line wet. The members of the
Connecticut Land company who owned it were
Messrs. Parkman and Greene, of Boston, who had it
surveyed into sections one mile long east and west, and one-half
mile wide north and south, the northwest corner section being number
The general surface is level, with the eastern part
rolling and sloping west. The soil in the eastern part is
clay, with sand enough mixed through it to make it a clay loam, the
quantity of sand increasing towards the central part, the farms near
Mosquito creek valley being quite sandy. The west half of the
township at some remote period was undoubtedly overflowed with
running water, which formed numerous gravelly ridges and knolls of
slight elevation. The soil of the level land surrounding the
ridges and knolls is a mixture of muck and sand, and being easily
drained is very productive.
At least two-thirds of the farms are well supplied by
streams and springs with good water, and for mixed farming that is
combining dairying and stock-raising with growing grain and
potatoes, the township will rank above the average of the Reserve.
Mosquito creek is
the largest stream in the township. It rises in Cherryville,
Ashtabula county, and flowing across the corner of Wayne and through
Colebrook, it enters this township about one mile west of the
northeast corner. Following a southwest course for the first
two miles it turns, and with it course due southwest and a little
east of the center it crosses the rest of the township, and
continuing south through Mecca, Bazetta, Howland, and into
Weathersfield, it empties into the Mahoning river at Niles. In
early days it was quite a mill stream in this township, furnishing
water power for two grit=mills, three saw-mills, and one
woolen-mill. It supplies some thirty farms with water, but the
mills are gone, and it makes its water power felt only in great
freshets, as in September, 1878, when in a single night it made a
clear sweep of all the rail fences in its valley from the north to
the sough line of the township. There are seven large brooks
that empty into the creek from the east and two from the west.
In the northwest part there is a large brook that makes one of the
headwater branches of Rock creek, a branch of Grand river, so that
the township is partly in the Mississippi valley, and partly in the
valley of the lakes.
There are no prehistoric mounds or works in the
township. Indian relics are numerous and indicate that this
was a hunting and sugar-making region for the Indians.
Early in the spring
of 1817 six men, John and William Harrington, John Wakefield,
Ephraim Rice, Roswell Bartlett, and Ichabod Merritt, came
into the township to examine the soul, timber, etc. Selecting
sections seven, fourteen, and seventeen, they went to Warren and
bought them of the owner's agent, General Simon Perkins, at
$2.50 per acre, paying one-third down. The following
boundaries by local points will include the purchase:
Beginning at the old cemetery on the east bank of Mosquito creek,
thence north one and one-half miles to the east and west road, at a
point about thirty roads west of Mineral Springs Cheese factory,
thence east along that road - except when it angles to the south at
the mill - to the west line of Timothy Higgins' farm, thence
south to the northeast corner of the Sloan farm, thence west
to the old cemetery, and contained nine hundred and sixty acres of
land. This tract they divided into six equal parcels, each one
mile long east and west and eighty rods wide. To Ichabod
Merritt - he being the youngest - they gave the first choice.
He took the north piece because there was a factory now stands.
William Harrington being next in age took the south piece.
John Harrington too next to Merritt, and John
Wakefield next to William Harrington, Ephraim Rice taking
the north, and Roswell Bartlett the south middle pieces.
That spring Ichabod Merritt, Ephraim Rice, and John
Wakefield built three log cabins, sixteen feet square and seven
feet high. The roofs were made of oak shakes held on with
poles; the floors, of puncheon, were made by splitting out flat
pieces from logs and smoothing them with axes. Merritt's
mother occupied the first cabin built, keeping house for her two
sons, Ichabod and Aaron.
These cabins were followed by ones for John
Harrington, Bartlett, and William Harrington.
That fall Ebenezer Kee bought part of section four, just
west of Merritt, and built a cabin and moved into it.
In the spring of 1818 David Rice came and bought
out Ichabod Merritt, who purchased the northeast part of
section thirty-four, and built a cabin on it. Ephraim Kee
came that spring and bought what was called the wild plum lot in
section thirty-four, joining Merritt, and settled on it.
There being no roads laid out and each purchase of land except
Ephraim Kee's and Merritt's being crossed by the creek,
the building sites were selected near that stream and the first road
cut out started from E. Kee's, near where the south cemetery
now is, and went north to J. Merritt's then northwest to
W. Harrington's cabin, near the old cemetery, and then followed
up the creek to John Wakefield's, Bartlett's, E.
Rice's, John Harrington's, and David Rice's, to
Ebenezer Kee's. In 1819 John Martin, J. B. Spring, H.
P. Higgins, James Bascom, and C. P. Hayford settled, and
in 1820 Timothy Higgins, John M. Jestin, Robert Evans, and
Samuel Hayford, moved in.
In 1821 Levi Rice, Ephraim Rice,
second, and Wyman Wakefield became settlers,
and Noah Bowen located on section forty-nine in the
south part of the township.
In 1822 Ami Churchill and his sons,
Major and Barnabas, with Noah Coleman,
Levi Bailey, Steward Kee, Sr.,
Ira Kee, and ___ Sloan, father of John
and Isaac Sloan, built cabins and bought land.
From 1822 until 1840 the township settled up rapidly, and probably
had at the latter year nearly as many inhabitants as at any time
At the time of the
first settlement of the township Kinsman, Gustavus, and Greene were
organized as one township and called Greene, Kinsman being the place
for holding the elections and meetings to transact the affairs of
the township. At the township election in the spring of 1819
the voters living wet of Pymatuning creek not voting to suit those
living east, they petitioned to be set off as a township with
Kinsman as a name, which was granted, leaving Gustavus and Greene
under the old organization, Gustavus being the place for meeting to
transact township affairs. At the election in the spring of
1820 the voters from the new settlement not voting to suit the more
populous and wealthy east part, the people of the east half
petitioned to be set off as the township of Gustavus, which being
granted left the new settlement the township's name but without
township officers. The new settlement applied for and was
reorganized as a township that year, and held the first election at
William Harrington's, in September (1280). The voters
elected Ebenezer Kee, clerk; Ephraim Rice, John Harrington,
and Roswell Bartlett, trustees; David Rice, treasurer;
Ephraim Rice and John Wakefield, overseers of the
poor; W. A. Bascom, constable; William Harrington, David
Rice, and Ephraim Kee, road supervisors; Wyman
Wakefield, fence viewer. The next spring Roswell
Bartlett was elected justice of the peace, and in the spring of
1823 Noah Coleman was elected to the same office.
Up to this time but one wagon and one cart were owned
in the township, and but one horse, owned by Roswell Bartlett,
whereof a little story. Bartlett, Merritt, and
William Harrington started for Gustavus one morning, and
Bartlett, mounted on his horse, proposed that he would ride on
ahead and inform the people at Gustavus that they were coming.
"Look here, Bartlett," said Jek, who had a poor
opinion of Bartlett's horse, "by hines we can beat you and
your old boss there," and away he started on a hunter's lope,
closely followed by Harrington, jumping the brooks and fallen
timber, and dashing through swales and brush, arrived in Gustavus
far in advance of Bartlett would be there sometime that day
if "his old boss didn't give out." Oxen were the teams used
the settlers took as much pride in owning a nice, well-matched pair
of oxen as our horsemen of today do in a span of matched horses.
The principal article produced that would sell for
money was black salts, and made by leaching the ashes gathered from
burnt log-heaps and boiling the lye down into the salts in a large
kettle. Black salts looked somewhat like very brown
maple-sugar, and found a ready sale among the trading merchants at
$3 per hundred pounds. The means used to transport the salts
to market was a large trough. The trough was made from a large
poplar log, hewed flat on one side for the bottom; then one end
tapered up and into a notched point for hitching the chain to; then
the log was dug out with axes, making the inside as wide and deep as
the size of the log would allow. With a good yoke of oxen
hitched to one of these troughs, loaded with black salts, the
settler could push through the woods to New Lyme, or cross the big
swamp to Bloomfield, or ford the Pymatuning to Kinsman, without
taking the risk of broken wheels or axles. For crossing swamps
and swales, fording bridgeless streams, getting over fallen trees
and logs or turning sharp corners around stumps and among trees no
modern vehicle will equal one of the settlers' troughs. Loaded
with bags of corn and wheat it was ready for mill and on Sunday
carried the women and babies to meeting.
CHURCHES AND SCHOOLS.
(TO BE TRANSCRIBED UPON
(TO BE TRANSCRIBED UPON
NOTES AND INCIDENTS.
The first birth was
Deborah Harrington, daughter of John Harrington, born in
The second was Edwin Wakefield, now Rev.
Edwin Wakefield, of this town, son of John Wakefield,
born Oct. 18, 1818.
The first marriage was John M. Jestin, to
Ruth Higgins, in November, 1820. The second was
William Harrington to Charlotte Bascom in March, 1821.
The first post-office was kept at the middle corners,
Major Churchill, postmaster. The mail came through from
Warren to Jefferson once a week, and was carried on foot by Caleb
Leonard, of Barzetta, for $65 per year.
The first merchant was Jonathan Worthen, who
came with a wagon load of goods and set up in a small building at
the east corners. He also put in machinery for carding wool,
driven by horse-power. George Hezlep and Stoddard
Stevens were merchants at the east corners in early days, and
were followed by George P. Curtis, who commenced about 1835,
and continued in business at the same stand for thirty-five years.
For forty years the east corners was the main business
point in the township. Since the war the center has been the
business as well as the geographical hub of the township.
Elk, deer, and wild turkeys were plenty, and bears and
wolves were frequently seen.
HARRINGTON purchased the first two sheep owned
in the township, in Barzetta. Tying them together he drove
them home. It getting dusk before he reached his clearing, the
wolves began to howl as if on his track. He cut a heavy cane
from a young hickory and prepared for a fight. It was not long
before the wolves were close to him and placing himself between the
sheep so as to hold them from running, he fought the wolves off and
then started his sheep on. Three times before reaching his log
barn he had to fight the wolves to save the sheep.
B. SPRING, better known in later days as
Dr. Spring, went to Warren in March, 1820, to transact some
business. On his return he reached Mosquito creek in Bazetta
about sundown, and being on foot got his feet wet in crossing.
He sat down on a log and took off his shoes and wrung the water out
of his stockings. While he was doing this he could hear the
wolves howling, and just as he was putting on his shoes he heard the
brush rattle, and looking around he saw a wolf looking at him
through a clump of bushes; soon he saw another, and another, till
some half dozen were around him. Making a spring for a limb,
he climbed a tree for safety. The wolves were kindly disposed
towards the doctor, and to keep him awake so that he would not fall,
howled around the tree till daylight the next morning, then trotted
off, and the doctor got down and tramped on to Greene.
ICHABOD MERRITT had been a successful hunter in
Canada, and on settling here where game was plenty became the most
noted hunter in the settlement. While hunting in the latter
part of the winter of 1822, in company with Isaac Mowrey,
Leonard Wheeler, and a new comer who had been a sailor, they
struck a bear track in the west part of Gustavus. Following it
to a large poplar tree, they found the bear had climbed it. Up
son sixty feet the tree was broken off, leaving two large limbs
below the break. No bear being in sight it was evident to them
that the stub above the limbs was hollow and made a den for the
bear. Having but one ax with them, and the tree being very
large, they were about to give up getting the bear, when the sailor
said that if they would chop a beech tree that stood near and lodge
it against one of the limbs of the poplar, he would go up the beech
and shoot the bear in its den.
The offer looking favorable for getting the bear, as
well as a chance of seeing a novel hunting exploit, Merritt
and the others agreed to it, and chopped the beech, lodging it as
the sailor directed. Taking a loaded gun he started up,
Merritt boosting him as far as possible, but after several
attempts the sailor could not get any higher than Merritt
could boost him. Suspecting that his courage had oozed out or
failed, and that they had spent time and labor for nothing,
Merritt got angry and said, "Come down out of the way; by hines
I can climb better than that my self." Tying his gun to his
back so as to have free use of his hands and arms in climbing, up he
went to the top of the beech, and stepping from that onto the large
limb and straightening up, he could look down into the hollow, where
he could see two eyeballs glaring at him in the dark. Telling
his companions what he saw, he gave directions to them to stand
ready to shoot the bear should it come out, as he was going to shoot
down into the den. Planning which was the quickest way to get
from the limb on which he stood back into the top of the beech, and
placing a bullet between his teeth ready to re-load, he turned the
butt of his gun up with the muzzle in the hollow and fired.
Without waiting to see the effect of his shot he clambered up the
top of the beech, and pouring some powder from his horn into the gun
he dropped the bullet in and gave the but a jam against a limb to
"jar" the bullet down and prime the gun. While Merritt
was getting from the poplar limb into the beech and re-loading, the
bear came out of the hollow growling with rage, and made directly
for Merritt. Mowrey tried to follow Merritt's
directions, but his gun snapped. Wheeler, frightened
out of his wits, began yelling, "You're gone Jek, you're gone
Jek!" and fired his gun off in the air; then thinking what he
ought to do, rammed a bullet down his gun without powder, broke his
ramrod, still yelling, "Your're gone Jek; jump down Jeck;
Oh Lord, Jek!" Just as the bear jumped from the large
limb into the beech at Merritt, he brought his gun to his shoulder
and fired, with the muzzle close to the bear's head, and it rolled
off and dropped to he ground dead. Two cubs climbed out of the
hollow and ran out on the limbs. Mowrey, having
reprimed his gun, shot one, and Merritt, re-loading where he
was, shot the other, and then descended and saluted Wheeler
with, "By hines, Wheeler, I ain't a gone Jek
HARRINGTON, now aged eighty eight, is still residing in
Greene with the wife of his youth, where he settled sixty-five
years ago. He was one of the original six purchasers of
land in Greene, and the only survivor of that company. He
was born in Brookfield, Orange county, Vermont, Feb. 5, 1794.
His father died when he was young, and he attended school but
little after he was ten years old. Yet he was an apt
scholar, and acquired a good common school education so that he
subsequently taught school a number of terms. When
twenty-four, in the spring of 1817, he came to Greene in company
with the first three families, and assisted in making the first
improvements in the township. His purchase comprised one
hundred and sixty acres in section seventeen, where he still
lives. Mar. 6, 1821, he married Helena Bascom,
daughter of James and Helena Bascom, born in Chester,
Massachusetts, Dec. 15, 1801. Mrs. Harrington's
parents came out in the spring of 1819, and settled in the
neighborhood of the Harrington's. Deacon
Harrington was the leader in the Congregational church in
Greene during its existence, uniting with it about 1831.
He was many years ago justice of peace for six years, and held
other township offices. But the position to which he looks
back with the greatest pride, as he says, was that of president
of a temperance society in Greene for a period of thirteen
years. This society was a very flourishing one in its day,
having enrolled in its membership nearly every citizen of the
township. Mr. and Mrs. Harrington are the parents
of five children - C. A. Harrington, a well-known
attorney at Warren; Corydon, a resident of Painesville;
Ashley, who married Helen Ross, and
occupies the home farm with his father; Frederick, in
Rock Creek; and Ermina (Ashley) in Colebrook
#2: History of Trumbull &
Mahoning Counties - Cleveland: H. Z. Williams & Bro. - 1882
- Page 565
EPHRAIM RICE, SR.,
one of the first purchasers of land in Greene, was a native of
Worcester county, Massachusetts. He moved out with his
family in 1817, settled on the creek where Samuel Jerauld
now lives, and resided there until his death. He was born
in the year 1772, and died July 3, 1869, in the ninety-eighth
year of his age. He was the father of four children, as
follow: Rhoda (Martin), Eli F., and Ephraim,
all living in Greene, the oldest over eighty, and Rebecca
(Gill), dead. Eli F., the oldest son, was born
July, 1803; married Mary P. (Alger) McKee, who died Jan.,
1882. Their children are William A., married and
lives in Mecca; Edward S., married and lives in Greene;
Mary, living at home, and Eli F., Jr., married and
occupies the farm with his father.
CORY was born in Derby, Vermont, in 1809, where he lived
until 1830, when he removed to the State of New York.
There he engaged in the lumber business for several years.
In 1837 he married Polly Phillips and the same
year came to Trumbull county, and purchased land in Greene township,
where he settled. His wife died in 1875 aged sixty-eight.
They have had a family of four boys and four girls. The
patriotism of this family is attested by the fact that four sons
were in the army during the war
of the Rebellion. Dwight enlisted in the Sixth Ohio
volunteer cavalry as private and came out as captain.
Nelson had an army experience of about four years. J.
B. enlisted in 1862 in the Ohio volunteer infantry, and served
one year. Charles served about five months.
Mr. Cory was married a second time, in 1875, to Lizzie Ayres,
of Stark county, born in 1834.
was born in Williamsfield, Ashtabula county, Ohio, Aug. 15,
1810. His grandfather, Aaron Rice, came to Ohio
about 1829, and settled in Greene township, Trumbull county.
He was a soldier of the war of the Revolution. He died at
an advanced age about 1832. Aaron, Jr., son of
Aaron and Anna (Yale) Rice, was born in New York State in
1871, and married Submit Jones, born Oct. 20, 1786.
He served in the War of 1812, and died in 1865. Lucian
Rice was married Mar. 27, 1839, to Lovina Hays, born
in 1815, and died May 11, 1855. In 1856 he married
Sarah White, born in 1823. By his first marriage he
had five children, and by his second one son.
WILLIAM C. TUTTLE,
son of Chester and Elizabeth (Cowden) Tuttle, was born in
Oneida county, New York, Aug. 20, 1816. When fourteen, in
February, 1831, he came to Greene, Trumbull county, Ohio, and
has resided here since. He learned the trade of tanning
with his uncle, Alexander Cowden, with whom he
came to Ohio and who had a tannery where George F. Curtis
now lives. He married in September, 1838, Emeline
Coleman, of Green Township, who came to Greene with her
parents in 1821. Her father, Noah Coleman, was one
of the prominent early residents of Greene, having held the
office of justice of the peace for the period of twenty-five
years. He was one of the pioneers of Colebrook, Ashtabula
county. Mr. Tuttle bought the business of his uncle
when twenty years of age, and carried on the business at the old
location util the spring of 1847, when he established his
business where he has since located, one mile east of the center
of Greene. His business is that of tanning and harness
making, and he formerly carried on shoemaking. Mr. and
Mrs. Tuttle are the parents of five children, three living
and two deceased. Sylvia married Charles P.
Jerauld, and died in Nebraska City Feb. 27, 1882.
Chester Tuttle, employed in business with his father; he was
a member of company C, One Hundred and Twenty-fifth Ohio
volunteer infantry, in the war of the Rebellion; served two
years and nine months and was discharged for wounds received in
a skirmish at Lovejoy's station, Georgia. Mary E.
Tuttle, until lately engaged in school teaching, now at home
with her parents. Clinton, who died young; and
Charles A., residing at Little Valley, New York.
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