George Washington Cowles.

Landmarks of Wayne County, New York online

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234). Total valuation $1,080,554 (equalized $996,356); rate per cent.
.038646. The town has two election districts and in 1893 polled 346
votes.

During the war of the Rebellion the town responded nobly and
promptly to the various calls for troops, and sent to the front a total of
134 volunteers to fight the nation's battles. Of this number John Mur-
ray Hoagand Nelson F. Strickland, both of whom enlisted in Co. B, 9th
Artillery, were promoted captains.

The first school house in town was built near the site of the pres-
ent public school building in Walworth village in 1804. It was of logs
and was replaced in 1812 by the pioneer frame school house, in which
Louis McLouth was the first and only teacher, for it burned before the
first term was concluded. The next school house was a brick struct-
ure erected in 1815, half a mile north of the village, which was soon
afterward torn down and a frame building was put up west of Wal-
worth. The Walworth Academy was legally incorporated May 21,
1841, and a stone building was erected at a cost of $4,000. The first
principal was Prof. E. B. Walsworth, who opened the school in the fall
of that year. A new brick structure (the present school house) was
built in 1857 at an expense of $8,000. It is three stories high and with
slight repairs is still used for the academy. The old building was con-
verted into a dwelling and later into a hall, atid is now the meeting-
place of the local grange. The academy employs two teachers and is
comparatively well patronized. The present trustees are Hon. T. G.
Yeomans, Lucien T. Yeomans, Elon Yeomans, Warren Hall, Albert
Ycomans, Alonzo Crane, Lewis Finley, Jerome Lawrence, and Orvis
Potter.

The town now has eleven school districts, taught by as many teach-
ers, and attended during the school year of 1892-93 by 477 scholars.
The value of school buildings and sites is $6,950; assessed valuation of
the districts $1,1 32,000; public money received from the State $1,424. 95 ;
amount raised by local tax $1,688. Ml.

Nathan Palmer erected and operated the first saw mill in town about



WAYNE COUNTY. 399

is lo. It was situated on the little stream southwest of West Wal-
worth, and the dam which supplied the power caused such an overflow
on adjacent lands that the inhabitants, considering themselves wronged,
assembled one night and tore it down and burned the mill. Mr. Palmer
began a litigation and recovered damages and costs.

As early as 1803 the first burying ground was laid out a quarter of a
mile south of Walworth village on the present Stephen A. Tabor farm.
A second burial plat was selected in 1816, near the center of the town,
and is known as the Baker cemetery. To this nearly all the remains
originally interred in the pioneer graveyard were ultimately removed.
Another pretty cemetery is located on elevated ground a little south-
west from Walworth village.

Walworth Village. — Until 1825 this place was known as "Doug-
lass Corners," from the Douglass brothers, Stephen and Andrew, who
were among its first settlers. The former built here the first hotel and
Thomas Kempshall the pioneer store in town, which were the substan-
tial beginnings of the present pretty village. Two other early settlers
here were Andrew Millett and Luther Fillmore, the latter of whom be-
came prominent in public affairs. The post-office was established in
1823, with Henry Moore, postmaster; the present incumbent is Cope-
land Morse.

Among the various merchants who have carried on trade in the vil-
lage were Theron and Veniah Yeomans, on the site of F. C. Robie's
store, in an old building recently burned; Lewis Eddy, where is now
the Masonic hall; and Tucker & Sweeting, Benjamin Billings, Nathan
Lusk, Uriah Hoyt, a Mr. Richmond, Philip Lawrence, John Sebring,
and Edward Kent. The present hotel was erected by Hon. T. G. Yeo-
mans. Among the landlords was John Sweeney, whom many will re-
call with interesting recollections. The village now contains three
general stores, a jewelry store, hotel and livery, a millinery store, one
harness shop, a shoe store, a tin shop, two cooperages, two physicians,
an academy and public school, two churches, and a population of
about 450.

West Walworth. — The site of this village was originally settled and
improved by Joseph Howe in 1805, and from a few log houses and a
blacksmith shop it has steadily grown into a thriving rural hamlet
The first store was opened in 1835 by William Freeland in a building
subsequently occupied by S. L. Miller. The Johnson Brothers began
the manufacture of grain threshers here in 1838, but the business



400 LANDMARKS OF

proved unprofitable and it was soon abandoned. The post-office was
established and William D. Wylie was appointed postmaster in 1840.
The present occupant of the office is Thomas Payne. The village now
comprises two general stores, a hardware store, two blacksmith shops,
wagon shop, dry house and evaporator, a millinery store, two churches,
and about 150 inhabitants. Lee and Harvey Miller, brothers, were
prominent and long-time merchants, as also was Nathan Reed. West
Walworth in late years has been an important center for handling dried
fruit, which has proved a profitable business.

Lincoln. — Situated in the northwest part of the town, the little ham-
let of Lincoln affords the inhabitants there nearly all the advantages
and privileges that either of the above described villages could offer.
In 185:3 N. F. Strickland erected and started a mill here and in the fall
of that year a store building was put up and business opened. In 1866
Mr. Strickland obtained a post-office for the place and was appointed
the first postmaster. The hamlet now contains a store, a cheese factory,
wagon and blacksmith shops, two churches, and about a dozen dwell-
ings.

Churches. — From traditionary evidence gathered from old settlers,
it appears that a Presbyterian Society once flourished in the village of
Walworth, but definite data concerning its organization, existence, or
disappearance cannot now be obtained. On land now owned by T. G.
Yeomans there once stood a stone church edifice reputed to have been
used by this Presbyterian Society as a place of worship, but it was long
ago torn down and its history and the history of the society are veiled
in the misty past.

The First Methodist Episcopal Church of Walworth was the pioneer
religious organization of the town, and their first house of worship was
a primitive structure built three-fourths of a mile west from the village
prior to 1809. With rude slab seats, with an ancient elevated pulpit,
and with a gallery on three sides that was reached by a ladder, it housed
the little band of worshipers until 1815, when a union edifice with the
ownership vested in the Methodistswas erected in Walworth. Although
never formally dedicated, it was used as a meeting place until is;-.',
after which it was transformed into a dry house. February 27, 1826, the
society was legally organized with I. R. Sanford, Luther Fillmore,
Levi Leach, Thomas Brown, and A. H. Howland, trustees. The pres-
ent fine brick edifice was built under the pastorate of Rev. L. F. Cong-
don in L872,- and cost about $17,000. The society has 150 members,



WAYNE COUNTY. 401

Rev. John II. Stoody as pastor. The present frame parsonage south
of the church was built on the site of an old one, removed, in 1884, and
cost $1,400.

The Second Baptist Church of Walworth was organized by Rev. R.
Powell, on July 11, 1832, with the following constituent members: Dea-
con Bancroft, Dr. and Mrs. L. D. Ward, Miss Palmer, Deacon and So-
phia McLouth, Benjamin Mason and wife, Freeman Wood and wife,
Benjamin Wood and wife, R. Wood, Mrs. L. Burr, Mrs. Agnes Cran-
dall, Gideon Hackett and wife, Mr. and Mrs. Smith, James Rice and
wife, Asil and Rhoda Hoyt, Lewis Potter and wife, and Barney Corey.
The union church was used for worship until 1834, when the present
stone edifice was erected and dedicated in September of that year. It
was repaired and re-dedicated in December, 1887, at a cost of some
$6,000. The society has about seventy members and is now supplied
by Walter B. McNinch, a student at Rochester. The Sunday school
was organized May 1, 1842, with Levi Hicks, superintendent.

The First Baptist church of West Walworth was organized with
fourteen members in 1815 by that active missionary of Western New r
York, Rev. Jeremiah Irons. The first pastor was Rev. Daniel Palmer,
in 1816, and until 1832 meetings were held in the school house. In
that year their stone house of worship was built and dedicated January
8, 1833, by Rev. Mr. Palmer. It has since been extensively repaired.
The present pastor is Rev. R. P. Ingersoll. The first Sunday school
was organized in 1815 and had fifteen members.

The Evangelical Association (German Lutheran) of West Walworth
was organized with thirty members by Rev. David Fisher, in 1857, and
until 1866 held its meetings in private houses. In that year a stone
building formerly used for school purposes was purchased, repaired,
and dedicated in the fall. The Sunday school was formed in 1855,
with John Lotze superintendent. The society has about sixty mem-
bers, with Rev. A. Schlenk as pastor.

The Free Will Baptist church of Walworth, located at Lincoln, was
organized in 1816 by Rev. Thomas Lewis, with these members : David
Salisbury, Mrs. Robbins, Joseph Strickland and wife, James, Andrew,
and Pamelia Strickland, Ephraim Holbrook, and Sarah Lyon. Rev.
Mr. Lewis was installed the first pastor and a stone edifice was erected
near the center of the town in 1834 at a cost of about $2,000. It was
dedicated by Rev. D. M. L. Rollin, January 18, 1835. It was long
used for worship and for several years past has been occupied as a

51



402 LANDMARKS OF

dwelling. In L876 a frame church was built in Lincoln; since that
year the society has worshiped therein. Rev. A. D. Loomis is pastor.
The society's property is now valued at about $4, Odd.

The Methodist Episcopal church of Lincoln had its inception at a
meeting held at Lincoln hall by Rev. Charles Hermans. An organiza-
tion was perfected in 1872 by Rev. Mr. Benson, with twelve members,
and Rev. Mr. Hamlin became the first pastor. He was succeeded by
Rev. John Irons, under whom in 1874 their frame church was erected
at a cost of about $3,000. It was dedicated December 2, 1874, by Rev.
B. I. Ives. The society now has eighty members, under the pastoral
charge of Rev. William C. C. Cramer. The vSunday school was organ-
ized in 1872 with 100 scholars, under E. K. Boughton, superintendent.



CHAPTER XXVII.
HISTORY OF THE TOWN OF ROSE.

The town of Rose was formed from the old town of Wolcott on the
5th of February, 1826, and embraces an area of 21,S4 , .t- > j acres. It lies
in the interior and east of the center of Wayne county, and is bounded
on the north by Huron, on the east by Butler, on the south by Galen,
and on the west by Lyons and Sodus. The largest stream is Thomas
Creek, which rises southeast of Rose Valley and flows northwesterly
th rough the village into Great Sodus Bay. The next of importance is
old Dusenbury Creek, locally known as Mudge Creek, rising in the
same locality and flowing northward through Huron into East Bay.
Other streams are Marsh and Black Creeks, both flowing south.

The surface is largely broken into drift hills, trending north and
south and intervened with beautiful valleys. The highest elevation in
town, lying near the Sherman farm, is 140 feet above Lake Ontario.
South of Rose Valley the land is very level. The soil consists of
gravelly loam occasionally mingled with clay, with black muck in the
swamps. It is exceedingly fertile, and yields abundant crops of apples,
grain, peppermint, onions, tobacco, raspberries, potatoes, etc. The
principal industry is agriculture. There are extensive ledges of lime-
stone that have been worked for burning and building purposes, and



WAYNE COUNTY. 403

at Glenmark the outcropping produces a very pretty waterfall. The
town was originally covered with a heavy growth of beech, hemlock,
maple, cedar, ash, and tamarack. Alfred S. Roe, in his " Rose
Neighborhood Sketches, " relates an interesting legend "of a button-
wood or sycamore, near Wayne Center, so large that a section of it was
used as a dwelling house after it had fallen down and proven to be
hollow. In fact, one of the stories of the late Simeon I. Barrett was
that of putting up at the Button wood tavern early in the century. The
late Hiram Church, of Wolcott, said that in 1808 three families, num-
bering fourteen persons, young and old, put up at this same inn for the
night and were well entertained. Osgood Church, his father, was one
of the guests. He also says this was on one of the Jeffers farms."

Clay is found in several places suitable for manufacturing brick and
tile. Most of the marsh land has been reclaimed by judicious ditching,
and the contrast between the town of three-quarters of a century ago
and the town of to-day is an interesting one. The primitive wilder-
ness, after years of arduous labor and continuous hardship, was converted
into productive fields, orchards, and gardens. The pioneers, with very
few exceptions, have passed away, leaving descendants and successors
to enjoy the fruits of their efforts. Rude log cabins long since gave
place to the comfortable frame dwellings, and the frontier school and
church have been succeeded by larger and better institutions. The
high moral standard of the earlier settlers permeates the communities
of the present generation, which ably maintains for their town the
prestige and importance that have always characterized it among simi-
lar divisions of the State.

The whole of the town of Rose, save the south three tiers of lots,
was originally included within Williamson's patent, as described in the
chapter devoted to Wolcott. This tract was surveyed 'into farm lots of
from twenty-five to 200 acres each. The three tiers above noted are
known as Annin's gore, and were laid off into eighty acre lots. Very
early in the century Hon. Robert S. Roe and Judge John Nichols,
natives of Virginia and brothers-in-law, purchased 4,000 acres of Will-
iamson's patent, extending from the gore to within three-quarters of a
mile of the Huron line and lying on either side of the Rose Valley road.
They were then residents of Geneva, and their purchase was called the
" Nicholas 4, 000-acre tract. " Mr. Nicholas was a congressman from
Virginia, a member of the New York State Senate, and judge of the
Ontario county court. Mr. Rose was an assemblyman and a congress-



404 LANDMARKS OF

man, and when this town was organized in 1826 it was decided to give
it his name; in recognition of the compliment he sent a "little Merino
lamb about the size of awoodchuck." The early settlers purchased
their lands of Osgood Church, of Wolcott, who was the resident sub-
agent for the Williamson patent from 1808 to 1813, after which the
business was transacted with the land office at Geneva. The sur-
veys and allotments were made by John Smith in 1805 and 1806.

Until 1873 communication was carried on by means of teams and
stages, but in that year the Lake Ontario Shore Railroad (now the R.,
W. & O.) was completed and opened through the north part of the
town with a station at North Rose. This added a new impetus to busi-
ness interests and established more convenient markets for the farmers'
produce. In 1841 the famous Sodus Canal was commenced through
the efforts of Gen. William H. Adams; it was to extend from the Clyde
River or Erie Canal via Rose Valley and near Glenmark to Sodus Bay.
All the mills along its line in this town were demolished and never re-
built. After the renewal of the charter in 1848 a large amount of
work was done and evidences still remain. In 1853 a railroad was pro-
jected from a point south of Clyde through that village and Rose Val-
ley to Sodus Bay; a survey was made, but the clashing of interests
caused an abandonment of the enterprise. In 1872 the measure was
revived, but without avail. Eron N. Thomas was treasurer of the
company and Mr. Thomas, Chauncey B. Collins, and Henry Graham
were among the directors.

The first regular roads were surveyed from May 10, 1810, to April 1,
1814, by Osgood Church. The first highway laid out was that leading
east from Stewart's Corners; the second was that from Rose Valley to
Clyde, surveyed June 29, 1810. The road from the Valley to Port
Glasgow was established March 20, 1811, and the one from Glenmark
to North Rose on April 1, 1814. The thoroughfare from Rose Valley
to Clyde was long a plank road maintained by a company incorporated
for the purpose; as such it was discontinued soon after 1877. In 1847
the town had forty-four road districts; at present the number is fifty-
one.

The first town meeting was held at the house of Charles Thomas in
Rose Valley, in April, 1826. Erasmus Fuller presided and the follow-
ing officers were chosen: Supervisor, Peter Valentine; town clerk,
David Smith ; assessors, James Colborn, Jeremiah Leland, Dorman
Munsell; collector, Thaddeus Collins, jr.; overseers of the poor, John



WAYNE COUNTY. 405

Skidmore and Aaron Shepard; commissioners of highways, Elizur
Flint, Robert Jeffers, William Lovejoy; commissioners of common
schools, Jacob Miller, James Colborn, Milburn Salisbury; inspectors of
common schools, Alpheus Collins, Peter Valentine, David Smith; con-
stables, Thaddeus Collins, jr., Lewis Leland; and twenty-two overseers
of highways.

The supervisors have been as follows:

Peter Valentine, 1826-29, Harvey Closs, 1857-58,

Philander Mitchell, 1830-32, Jackson Valentine, 1859-69,

Dorman Munsell, 1833, James M. Home, 1870-71,

Thaddeus Collins, sr., 1834, Charles S. Wright, 1872-73,

Ira Mirick, 1835, Jackson Valentine, 1874-75,

Peter Valentine, 1836-39, Joel S. Sheffield, 1876,

Dorman Munsell, 1840-41, William J. Glen, 1877,

Peter Valentine, 1842, S. Wesley Gage, 1878,

Eron N. Thomas, 1843, William J. Glen, 1879, (part)

Philander Mitchell, 1844-45, George Catchpole, remainder of
Elizar Flint, 1846, 1879,

Hiram Mirick, 1847, William H. Griswold, 1880-81,

Philander Mitchell, 1848-50, George Catchpole, 1882-84,

Eron N. Thomas, 1851, Samuel Gardner, 1885, (part)

Solomon Allen, 1852, E. Chester Ellinwood, remainder
Eron N. Thomas, 1853, of 1885 and 1886,

Thaddeus Collins, jr., 1854, George Catchpole, 1887-90,

Jackson Valentine, 1855, Merritt G. McKoon, 1891-93,

Philander Mitchell, 1856, Frank H. Closs, 1894.

The town officers for 1894 are: Frank H. Closs, supervisor; Joel S.
Sheffield town clerk, died July v 30, 1894, and E. F. Houghton appointed;
T. B. Welch, S. W. Lake, R. C. Barless, F. E. Soper, justices of the
peace; Valorus Ellinwood, F. E. Henderson, Joel H. Putnam, assessors;
Seth C. Woodard, collector; Thomas J. Bradburn, highway commis-
sioner; Judson Chaddock and John A. Hetty, overseers of the poor.

March 3, 1885, an appropriation to not exceed $2,000 was voted for
the erection of a memorial town hall, which was built in Rose Valley in
1886. It is a frame structure, two stories high, and contains also the
rooms of the local G. A. R. Post.

The first settlements in Rose were made by Alpheus Harmon, Lott
Stewart, and Caleb Melvin in 1805. The latter was a brother of the
Jonathan Melvin, sr., so intimately identified with the beginnings of
Wolcott. In Osgood Church's old book of records relative to the sale
of lands on Williamson's patent are entries of 117 contracts, bearing



406 LANDMARKS OF

dates from June 16, 1808, to October 15, 1813, of which the following
come within the limits of this town :

Alpheus Harmon lot L69, 113 acres, and lot 170, 115 acres, at $3.50, June 21, 1808;
Pender Marsh, lot 205, HO acres, at 84, January 11, 1811; Epaphras Wolcott, lot 160,
101 acres, at $4, January 30, isn ; Seta Shepard, lot 197, 40 acres, at *4, April 1,

1811.; Daniel Lounsbury, lot , 206£ acres at $4, April 3, 1811 ; Jonathan Wilson,

lot 1 in, 50 acres, at $4, April 3, 1*11 ; John Wade, lot 185, 107 acres, at $4, April lfi,
isn; Asa and Silas Town, lots 212 and 213, 150 acres, at 84, November 11, 1811;
John Burns, lot 153, 108| acres, at $4.25, April 8, 1812; Abram Palmer, lot 140, 102
acres, at $4, April 22, 1812; Thomas Avery, lot 154, 103 acres, at $4.25, May 4, 1812;
Demarkus Holmes, lot 187, 101 acres, at $4.32, June 25, 1812; Noahdiah Gillett, lot
L32, 101 acres, at $4, < >ctober 2, 1812; Eh Wheeler, lot 188, Oil 1-2 acres, at $4, Novem-
ber L3, 1812; Jacob Ward, lot 140, 50 acres, at $4.25, November 14, 1812; Elijah How,
lot llii, 50 acres, at XI, November 18, 1812; Jonathan Wilson, lot 101, 31 acres, at
$4.25, December 29, 1812; Asahel Gillett, lot 155, 50 acres, at §4.25, March 10, 1813.

Caleb Melvin located about a mile south of Rose Valley in 1805; the
same year Alpheus Harmon settled in the northeast part of the town,
and Lott Stewart at Stewart's Corners, which took his name. Stewart
kept a tavern here, the first outside the village; it stood where is now
the home of George Stewart. Mr. Stewart married for his second wife
a daughter of Alpheus Harmon, by whom he had one son (Allen) and
five daughters; his first wife bore him a son (James) and two daugh-
ters. Mr. Harmon sold out to A. F. Baird and removed to Cattarau-
gus county, whither also Stewart went and died. Soon afterward came
Joel Bishop and his sons, Seth, Joel, jr., and Chauncey; they located
on the Port Glasgow road. Near them Oliver and Seth Whitmore and
Simeon Van Auken became residents, and among others of about this
period were James and Jeremiah Leland, Milburn Salisbury, and
Asahel, Hosea, and Harvey Gillett.

About L810 Alpheus and Thaddeus Collins, jr., came in and two
years later were joined by their father, Thaddeus, sr., and the re-
mainder of his family. They purchased 400 acres, including a part of
the village of Rose Valley. Capt. John Sherman located at the Valley
in 1S1 1 and built and opened an inn. He had originally settled on the
Ganargwa Creek, but soon removed to Galen, whence he came here,
being accompanied by his sons, Elias D., Charles B., and John, jr. In
lsP2 Elijah How located two miles northwest of Rose Valley and
Aaron Shepard, a blacksmith, the same distance east. Alfred, Lyman,
loci, and John Lee, brothers, settled in town about this year.

Robert Jcffers made the first settlement in the west part of Rose in
is I 5; he was 'accompanied by three sons, John, William, and Nathan,



WAYNE COUNTY. 407

and for many years the place was called the J'effers neighborhood.
Jacob Clapper settled near them. Capt. Chauncey Bishop located on a
farm in this town in 1812 where he died in August, 1880. Hollow-ay
Drury came from Eden, Vt. , in 1815. George Seeley, son of Joseph,
was born in Sherburne, N. Y., in 180G and died here in December, 1 885.
lie was a colonel in the State militia, held several town offices, and was
a deacon in the Baptist Church. Henry Graham was a noteworthy fig-
ure in town in years gone by. Born in 1802, he came to Port Glasgow
in 1831 and kept the hotel later owned by Isaac Gillett. He removed to
Rose, but finally went to Clyde, where he died in October, 1878.

Palmer Lovejoy located in the northeast corner of the town at an
early day and gave to the place where he purchased the name of Love-
joy settlement. He had sons William C, Silas and Daniel. Among
other early settlers were Dorman Munsell, Alverson Wade, Paine and
William Phillips, Julius Baker, Benjamin Way (father of Samuel and
Harley), Robert Andrews, John Basssett, John Burns, Samuel South-
wick, Jonathan Ellinwood (father of Lucius and Chester), John Wade,
Philander Mitchell, Joseph Seeley (father of George and Delos), Isaac
Crydenwise, Eli Andrews, and John Covey. Philander Mitchell was a
very prominent man; in 1827 he was elected a justice of the peace
along- with Elizur Flint, Dorman Munsell, and Charles Richards, and
held the office over thirty years. He was county superintendent of the
poor in 1861-63. Elizur Flint was president of the first temperance
society organized in town in 1829.

Hon. Eron N. Thomas was postmaster at Rose Valley several )^ears,
supervisor three times, and member of Assembly in 1862. He was a
prominent man and the owner of a stock farm near the village. Eli
Garlick, a settler of 1815, died January 7, 1892, aged ninety-two. . Eli-
zur Flint came here in 1817 and died in February, 1884. Simeon I.
Barrett was born in 1798 and died in town in November, 1887, after a
residence of over sixty years. Samuel Gardner, born in 1820, settled
early in Huron, where he was supervisor some time, and moving to Rose