James P Snell.

History of Sussex and Warren counties, New Jersey : online

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Puller, born April 20, 1795, and had children, — Har-
vey, born Dec. 2l!, 1811, residing in Jersey Citj ;
Fanny, born March 24, 1814, widow of Silas Lewis,
and present wife of Jacob W. De Witt, of Wantage;
Lydia Ann, widow of David Wilson, and present wife
of Jeremiah Bennett, of Dnionville, N. V. ; Mary, who
married Archibald Fountain and resides at Hamburg;
Lavinia, wife of Lewis Vdams, of Wantage ; .1 esse, a
farmer in Wantage; and George, the subject of this

sketch. Mr. Shepherd was a man of a retiring dispo-
sition, and passed his life within the inner circles of
existence. He was an intelligent and industrious
farmer, of strict integrity, and gave liberally of his
means to the support of the progressive institutions of
his day. He died in 1875, and his wife in July,

George Shepherd was born May 1, 1831, on the
homestead of his grandfather, which he now owns,
lie obtained his elementary education at the district
school of his neighborhood, and completed his studies
at Rankin's Academy. Deckertown. lie married, on
Jan. 1, 1SC2, Sarah R, daughter of Daniel and Ann
('. Ball, of Wantage, and has one child. Sarah (ieorgi-
ana, born Feb. 2.'!, 1S70. Alter bis marriage he cul-
tivated the home-farm on shares, and subsequently
purchased it of his father. Resides this tract of one
hundred and forty-five acres, he owns an adjoining
farm of one hundred and thirty-live acres. 1 1,- is
one of the successful, thrifty fanners of Wantage town-
ship, a man of strict integrity ami unblemished char-
acter, and one who enjoys the respect and esteem of
the community in which he lives. He is a Repub-
lican in polities, but no office-seeker, is a member and

trust) f the First Baptist Church of Wantage, and

is a warm supporter of the benevolent institutions of
his day. Towards bringing the Midland Railroad to
Deckertown he contributed five hundred dollars.


e<&A/ c - /)/£^ 2/ v lr ~^



frequently called into demand in the settlement and
adjustment of estates in the capacity of executor or
administrator. Ee has performed the duties of his
several positions with singular exactness ami fidelity,
and is held in general respect for his integrity and
honorable dealings. Be is a member of the Mount
Salem Baptist Church, of which he is a trustee, and
iras its clerk and treasurer for many years. He is
still in active business life.

The children of Mr. and Mrs. Hoffman are Mary
K., wife of John Flynn, of Port Jervis, X. Y. ;
Horace D., residing in Wantage township; Rebecca
If., wife of Abraham 8. Magill, of Middletown,
X. Y. ; ami Maggie A., wife of Thomas N. Roloson,
of Wantage.

His grandfather was Daniel Dunn, who came from
Piscataway, \. J., before the Revolutionary war and
located on the old homestead, now owned by our sub-
feet, adjoining that where the latter now resides.
Daniel Dunn passed his life engaged in agricultural
operations, which in those early days implied inces-
sant labor and toil, amid the privati and hardships

of pioneer lit.. He had four children, — namely
Drake, Daniel, Ruth, and Charity; the latter married
a man by the name oft rOllld. Drake Settled in Wan -

iwuship and farmed throughout his life.
Daniel Dunn, father of Oscar, was horn on the

borne farm in the year 1792, and on thai ■ place

passed his entire life in the tilling of the soil. He
died in 1858. His wife was Mary Springstard, who

bore him six children, namely. Alans now a

farmer and merchant at Unionville, N. Y. ; Oscar;

Sarah (deceased), who married William Elston;

Hoses (deceased); Mary deceased), who married
Samuel C. Potter; and Charlotte, wife of Nicholas

DOX, of Wantage township. Mrs. Dunn died ill


Oscar Dunn was horn on the Dunn homestead, in
Wantage, On April 25, 1818. lie grew Up on the pa-
ternal farm, and attended the district Bchool of his

neighborhood. Until the death of his father, in

L858, be worked the home place on shares, but after
this time he came into possession, partly by descent
and partly by purchase, of the tract, now comprising
one hundred and seventy acres, which he still owns.
By careful, systematic, and industrious habits of life,
together with intelligent management, Mr. Dunn has
achieved great Buccess in agricultural operations, and
i- one of the wealthiest ami most successful farmers of
his section. He has always made a specialty of the
dairy business, and from keeping twelve cows he has

run up to one hundred and fifty at the present writing;
i lss] i. The advent of the Midland Railroad to his
native township has afforded ample facilities for the
transportation of milk to the city markets, and his
daily shipment of that product of farming industry
average- twenty-five eans the year round. In addition
to the homestead. Mr. Dunn owns several other farm-,
including sixty-six acres upon which he now resides,
the Henry De Witt farm, in Wantage, of over one
hundred and ninety-three acres, a farm in Orange

Co., V Y., of one hundred and twenty-eight acres,
eighty acres mar the Dunn Yale school-house, and

thirty-four acres in Vernon township. lie moved to

his present residence in 1866, and erected his attrac-
tive and admirably designed dwelling in 1870. It is
one of the handsomest architectural structures, for a

farm-residence, in Sussex County, and furnished
throughout in a tasteful and elegant style.

In 1879, Mr. Dunn's harn was destroyed hy tire, in
which were hiirned thirty COWS, eighty tons of hay,

three horses, wagons, and other farming conveniences
to a large amount. With an insurance of only one
thousand dollars, however, he replaced the structure
with his present commodious harn and outbuildings

in 1880. He was married on Jan. 1, 1842, to Sarah

Louisa, daughter of John and Phebe Elston, of Wan-
tage, and has one son, Thomas .'eil. rson Dunn, born
Nov. 11. 1842, and who married, on Oct. 22. 1872,
Ellen, daughter of Barret D. Havens, of Wantage

township. Mr. Dunn is a Democrat in politics,

1 though no office-seeker, and, with his wife and family,
is a member of the I Irange Baptist Church of Union-
ville, X. Y.



'fin; present township of Walpack i- one of the
smallest civil divisions of Siis-e\ County, li eon-
tains 21.3 square miles of territory, and comprises an

area of 18,632 acres. It is '.i mile- in length from ex-

1 By l'rof. W, \V. Olkjton.

treme point-, and :; mile- in width in its widest part.

The Delaware River, Mowing along the western bor-
der, forms the boundary line between Walpack ami
Pennsylvania. At the southwest corner of the town-
Bhip the stream describes a sweeping bend, and, re-
turning for marly a mile, again make.- a sharp curve
to the southward.



Walpack is bounded north by Sandyston and the
Delaware River; east by Stillwater; south by Warren
County ; west by the Delaware River. Aside from
the rich valley through which the Flatbrook flows
and the strip of lowland along the river border, the
township is wholly mountainous, the Blue Mountain
range conspicuously separating it from Stillwater on
the east.

The Delaware and Flatbrook valleys comprise the
best farming lands of the township. These valleys
are separated by a chain of hills known in the upper
part of the township for two-thirds of its length as
Pompey Ridge, and for the remaining one-third, at
the lower end, as Walpack Hill, terminating near
Walpack church. Flatbrook is formed by the junc-
tion of two streams called Little and Big Flatbrook,
which unite in Sandyston, near Peters' Valley, the
former rising near Hainesville, in Sandyston township,
and the latter in the mountains of Montague. This
brook is a considerable stream, and flows nearly par-
allel with the Delaware from its source to its conflu-
ence with the latter river, at Flatbrook ville. At the
mouth of this stream, in the Delaware River, is the
remarkable whirlpool which in the Indian language,
according to Heckewelder, gave name to the ancient
territory of Walpack. This authority says, " ' Wal-
pack' is a corruption of ' Wahlpeck,' which in the
Indian language signifies a ' turn-hole,' or whirlpool
in the water. It is compounded of the two Indian
words tuoa-lac, ' a hole,' and tuppeck, ' a pool.' " The
name "turn-hole" — a provincialism now obsolete —
was used to designate a sudden bend of a stream by
which the water, when deep, is turned back upon it-
self in an eddy or whirlpool. The eddy from which
AValpack takes its name is visible at low water, but
during great floods it becomes a powerful whirlpool,
sucking in large pieces of timber and carrying them
out of sight.

The population of Walpack in 1880 was 571, — a de-
crease of 76 in the last decade. Its entire assessed
valuation was $280,557, and its total taxes $3013.10.


The original township of Walpack, which extended
from the New York State line to the Delaware Water
Gap, was the only portion of Sussex County traversed
by the " Old Mine Road." This road was one of the
earliest — and perhaps the earliest of like extent — on
the continent of North America, having been built
by a company of miners from Holland, as some sup-
pose, before the conquest of the New Netherlands by
the English, in 1664. At all events, it was the avenue
of communication between the Hudson and the Del-
aware before the beginning of the eighteenth century,
the means of ingress of the Dutch and Huguenot
settlers of the rich valley of the Minisink, and their
only channel to market on the Hudson for many years
before they knew that the Delaware, upon whose banks
they had settled, might float them to Philadelphia.

The Old Mine Road was about 100 miles in length,
extending from Kingston, on the Hudson River, to
the Delaware Water Gap. It was located up the
Mamakating valley, thence across the dividing ridge
to the Neversink, or Mackhackemack branch of the
Delaware, along which it ran to the latter river, and
down the same to its terminus at the old copper-mine
in Pahaquarry, now Warren County. " This mine
was opened about three miles northwest from Nicholas
Depue's house, in Walpack township, Sussex Co.
(now Warren), N. J."* Nicholas Depue lived on
the Pennsylvania side of the Delaware, about three
miles above the Water Gap.

Count Zinzendorf, accompanied by his eldest daugh-
ter, Benigna Henrietta Justina von Zinzendorf, and
Anton Seyfert, in August, 1742, made a trip over the
Old Mine Road from Nazareth, Pa., to Kingston, en
route for Shecomeco, a Mohican mission near what is
now Pine Plains, in Dutchess Co., N. Y. The portion
of their route for the first thirty miles to the Delaware
at Depue's Ford is described in the journal as being
rough and difficult. It led by an Indian trail into
the Minisink through Tat's Gap. This, says the
writer, was " the most fatiguing part of the journey
as far as Rhinebeck ; for after crossing that river (the
Delaware) into the Jersey Minisink they struck one
of the oldest roads in the country so far inland, and
no natural avenue of trade and intercourse. This was
the ' Old Mine Road,' constructed, it is said, at a very
early day by Dutch adventurers. ... It was by
means of communication thus opened that the Dutch
now seated themselves along the whole extent of this
beautiful valley even to its utmost southerly limits, —
most numerously, however, on the Jersey shore of the
Delaware." The count and his companions reached
Depue's, on the bank of the Delaware, on Saturday
evening, August 12th, and on Sunday were escorted
to the Walpack church, riding their horses across the
ford, it being Dominie Fryenmoet's Sunday at that
place. "We were compelled," says the count, "to
listen to two sermons, which wearied us."

It will only be anticipating our history a little to
remark that at this time there were four Reformed
Dutch Churches in the Minisink valley, three of
them situated on the Old Mine Road, and one near
Depue's Ford, on the Pennsylvania side. The last
mentioned was called the Shawanec or Smithfield
Church ; the two in Walpack were called respectively
the Walpack and Minisink Churches; and the one
above the State line, at the confluence of the Mack-
hackemack with the Delaware, called Mackhackemack
Church. To these was subsequently added the Shapa-
nack Church, also in Walpack, upon the Old Mine
Road, about seven miles above the Walpack church,
which stood in the Bend of the Delaware.

The count seems not to have had the most cordial

* Noto to Count Zinzendorf *a journal, " Memorials of tho Moravian
Church," p. 4G.



liking for the young pastor, Johannus Ca.-panis Fry-
nun.,. I. The Sun, lay was vi ry warm, and between
the services, "In order to avoid religious contro-

s,r-\," he say-, "I went i n l<> the »' I- an, I read

'Josephus.' The divine came to me and annoyed
me with questions and remarks. Although my curt
manner provoked him, it served to bring him to ft -
Section; and he sought to propitiate me afterwards
by riding with us for several hours. He is the well-
known Casper, from Zurich, a well-meaning man. I

niu-i confess, — one of the so-called ' Canvictioniste,'
without much conviction, however, and yet efficient
for good in his denomination."

Nothing further of interest is recorded during the
journey of Count Zinzendorf and his party through
Walpack. Thej passed over the Mine Road to Bangs-
ton, stopping on,- night about halt-way between that
place and Port Jervis, visited the Mohican mission at

BheCOmeco, and returned by the same route, reaching
the Minisink on the _!7tli of August.
Conrad Weisser, another distinguished Moravian,

made a journey over the Mine Road, en TOUtt from

Bethlehi m to ( >i laga, in 1750. He gives the fol-
lowing station-; and distances :

"August 17. — Came t<< Nazareth.

"August 18.— NIcMaj Dopuy, lo Smlthneld, on Delaware, 39 miles.
" Au^nMt 19.- Henry Cortreclit, ,it lllnlsalng, 25 miles.
u August20. Emanuel Pas, d. ' ,; Sj infcmf,* 35 miles.
"August 21.— Kings-town (Sopus), 44 miles."

John Adams, while attending Congress during its
sessions at Philadelphia, as late as lNUO, passed down
the Mine Road as the most eligible route from Boston
to that city. He was aceustomed to lodge at Kxpiire
Van Campen's, in the Jersey Minisink.*

II. — i: \\:\.\ SETTLEMENT.
The earliest settlers in this town-hip, as well as in
the county of Sussex, eanie in by the old Mine Road,
above described. They were chiefly Hollanders and
French Huguenots, or their descendants, from Ulster
do., V V. They wen- the Van Auk-ens, Van Cam-
pens, Deckers, Depues, Dingmans, Emans, Schoon-
liovens, Brincks, VVestbrooks, Ennises, Nan Nests,
<',>ol-, I >e Voors, Swartwouts, Westfahls, Etosenkrans,
Kuykendals, Hoornbecks, De Witts, Van de Marks,
"Vredenburghs, Kortrechts, Hoogtalings, Gumairs,

Quicks, Cuddebacks, 8cl nmakers, formers, and

Van Syckles. Among those of Irish, Scotch, \S'el-li,

and English nationalities we find the nam, - oi Lovi .

Magee, McClennan, Chambers, Thompson, McCarty,
i;,iet, Burns, done-, Kimber, Pigeon, Wells, Perry,

( lonlej . and other-.

Local records containing most of the above names
begin in L7 16, when Rev. Petrua Vas, of Kingston,

began to Visit the settlements and hold religion- -, r-
viccs, baptizing the children of the settle ITS. To the-,

memoranda of baptisms were added the records of
four Dutch Reformed churches ami their Cona

* Relshol'a " Hemoii ,i- ol the ttomrlan Chun I,." p. I".

beginning with 1 7 •' : 7 and continuing through the cen-
tury. From the record of baptisms in the Minisink

and Mackhackemack Churches we take the following:

wiicro Numbot

I.ocated. Ilaptiz«(l.
Kingston. 3



G g Willi,],,, Manclu

J,,liu Casparus Fryonmuth, i„L-t-,r.

C -g Willi, tin Mum,,

John c.i-i-jirus Fryonmutli, pastor.

<: g Willulm Muiuaus. Kingston

John Casparus r,y- numtli, pastor.

i-t 19.

1717, January B.

1718, Jiii.icu v 28.
17:i7, August 28.
11 :-. May 80,31.
1738,0 lobar 31.

ember 1.

1739, 51.,;.

171", Juno 17,18.

1740, S. iptenibu 19.

1741, June 7.
1741, November 24.

1143, Uaj
171. August 3.
1743, 0, ' ,bi i 17


I7H, April 23.

1711. Dec '

171".. December 25.

These local records do not, of course, reach back to
the beginning of settlement, but only to the begin-
ning of the period when the religious interests of the
community began to be cared for; the first settle-
ment- in Walpack began at a period considerably
earlier. Some of the acts passed by the Provincial
Assembly of New York show that there was a consid-
erable population in the valley of the Delaware, upon
and at the mouth of the M ackhackeinaek, or Ncver-

sink, and southward to and including the Minisink
islands, prior to the year JTou. In Kutt, -liber's "His-
tory of Orange County" we find the following refer-
ence to the old precinct of Goshen, which included
the first settlements in ancient Walpack:
"That portion of tin' precinct lying west ,,f the Mini-ink Mountains
t to several political changef Bj id if Oct. 18, 1701, 'for the
i in .., RepreeentattYea, 1 the Inhabit*
:vnt. i.l • Wagachemeck and Great ami Little Mini-ink' woro ' impovrered
ii rotee In the count-/ of Dialer.' Bj act of Mot. 12, VK '. ' lo
determine, settle, and ascertain the bounds, and limits "f IheOountyof
Orange,' tueacl "t Oct. is, HOI, was repealed so far a.-, it related to the

-••ttlei hi named, which were In eflbct declared t>, be a part of Orange


'these a,ts prove beyond controversy that there was
a considerable voting population on the Neveraink
an, I southward on the Delaware, in ancient Walpack,
before the year 1701 ; for in the act of that year they
are named as" the inhabitants of Wagachemtck [Mack-
hackema < U and Little Minitink." The pre-

cinct of Goshen, from which they were Bel off to vote
in 1 Ister, had a municipal organization in 1703, being
entitled, under the general law of the province of New

York, to " tWO aSBeSSOn, a collector, overseer of high-
ways, and a constable." The « estern part of the pre-
cinct was afterwards set off and known as " Minisink


t Hun. ,,i srt "History of Orange County," p. ::,'.. note.

la , of that n .u, i- in Orange C ly.but In the real

I <' ,,,,ty. Sro " MiuL.iuk Precinct," In tlie General




Two early patents were located in Minisink under
authority of the province of New York which covered
a portion of ancient Walpack. These were the grant
made to Arent Schuyler, issued May 20, 1697, and
the Minisink patent, granted Aug. 28, 1704. The
Schuyler patent embraced 1000 acres adjoining the
Mackhackemack and extending southward so as to
include the Minisink islands. It is thus described :

" A certain tract of land in Minisink country, in the province of New
York, called by the native Indians Warensaghskennick, otherwise called
Maghawaemns ; also a certain parcel of meadow, or vly, called byjhe
Indians Warensaghskennick, situate, lying, and being upon a certain
run, called by the Indians, and known by the name of Minisink, before
a certain Island called Menayack, which is adjacent to or near to a cer-
tain tract of laud called by the Indians Maghakeneck, containing the
quantity of 1000 acres and no more."

Arent Schuyler, who was employed by the govern-
ment of New York as an interpreter and agent among
the Indians, visited this locality in 1694. and made
the following entries in his journal, which he reported
to the Governor :

"Journal of Captain Arent Schuyler's Visit to the Minisink

"May it please your Excell:

"In persuance to y r Excell: commands I have been in the Minissinck
Country of which I have kept the following journal: viz 1

" 1094 y° 3 a of Feb : I departed from New Yorke for East New Jersey
and came that nightatt Bergentown where I hired two men and aguide.

« yc 4th Sunday Morning. I went from Bergen & travilled about ten
English miles beyond Haghkingsack to an Indian place called Peckwes.

" Y e 5 th Monday. From Peckwes North and be West I went about
thirty-two miles, snowing and rainy weather.

*' Y° 6t th Tuesday. I continued my journey to Maggaghkamieck [Port
Jervis] and from thence to within half a day's journey to the Menis-

«Y«>7"i Wednesday. About eleaven a clock I arrived att the Minis-
sinck, and there I niett with two of their Sachems and severall other
Indians of whome I enquired after some news, if the French or their
Indians had sent for them or been in y e Menissinck Country. Upon \v ch
they answered that noe French nor any of the French Indians were nor
had been in the Menissinck Country nor there abouts and did promise y'
if y c French should happen to come or y i they heard of it that they will
forthwith send a mesinger and give y r Excellency notice thereof. . . .

" In the afternoon I departed from y Menissincks ; the 8 th , 9" 1 , & 10 th
of Feb. I traveled and came to Bergen in y c morning and about noone
arrived at New Yorke.

"This is may it please y r Excell : the humble report of y r Excellency's
most humble serv 1 .

"Arent Schuyler."

The Minisink patent was granted Aug. 28, 1704, to
Matthew Long, Ebenezer Wilson, Philip French,
Derick Vandenburgh, Stephen de Lansey, Philip
Rokelcy, John Cobert, Daniel Howan, Caleb Cooper,
William Sharpas, Robert Milvvard, Thomas Wenham,
Lancaster Syms, John Person, Benjamin Aske, Petrus
Bayard, John Colewell, Peter Fanconier, Henry Swift,
Hendrick Ten Eycke, Jarvis Marshall, Ann Bridges
(widow of John Bridges), and George Clark. This
grant embraced the western part of Ulster and Orange
Counties, and extended southward on the Delaware
River "to the south end of Great Minisink Island,"
and eastward "to the bounds of the Wawayanda
patent granted to John Bridges and Company." It
was the attempt to crowd down these patents upon
the lawful territory of New Jersey, and to appropriate

the rich lands of the Minisink and the upper Wall-
kill, under color of title from New York, that caused
the long and bitter boundary line controversy referred
to in another part of this work.


The earliest tracts referred to under this head were
located while the territory of Sussex County was in-
cluded in Hunterdon and Morris.

On Nov. 6, 1718, Joseph Kirkbridc located a tract
of land on the Delaware River, adjoining a branch
of the same, about three miles above Pahaqualin
(an Indian village*), in the county of Hunterdon.
Joseph Kirkbride coaveyed this tract of land by deed
bearing date Oct. 10, 1725, to Nicholas Schoonover
and Thomas Brinck. There being an overplus of
land within the said bounds, a resurvey was made
in 1740 by Martin Ryerson, and the tract was 'found
to contain 1210 acres besides allowance for highways.
At the resurvey a more definite description is given
of the tract. It is described as "situate in the
county of Morris, in the western division of New
Jersey, at a place called Walpack, upon the Dela-
ware River, beginning at the mouth of a considerable
stream of water which emptieth itself into the Dela-
ware River, commonly called the Flat Kill ; thence
up the several courses thereof," etc.

This survey embraced the peninsula or hook at the
lower end of Walpack, extending about four miles up
from the mouth of the Flatbrook. In the same year
Joseph Kirkbride located 500 acres farther up, em-
bracing the Shapanack flats. This tract was subse-
quently owned by Isaac Van Campeu, and still later
by his son Abraham, from whom it passed to John
H. De Witt about 1811 or 1812.

Joseph Kirkbride was a deputy surveyor, and lived
and died in Bucks Co., Pa. He was the ancestor of
Dr. Kirkbride, of Philadelphia, and of Mrs. Gurney,
of Burlington.

Nov. 17, 1725, John Crooks located a survey above
Joseph Kirkbride's on the Delaware River. The front
of this tract along the Delaware, comprising 250 acres,
was sold by John Crooks in 1729 to John Emans, and
is the Emans tract shown on the map.

June 7, 1731, Col. Daniel Coxe had a survey made
by Samuel Green, deputy surveyor, " situate, lying,
and being at a place called the Flat Kill, in the
county of Hunterdon." This survey was in that por-
tion of ancient Walpack now Sandyston. Upon the
running of the Lawrence line it was found to be in
East Jersey, and Col. Coxe, or his heirs, or assigns,
received an equivalent for it in the western divisions.

Online LibraryJames P SnellHistory of Sussex and Warren counties, New Jersey : → online text (page 79 of 190)