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History of York County Pennsylvania From the Earliest Time to the Present online

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disposed of at Ih cents a box. Henry Wilt, of
Conewago, raised 2,500 boxes; Henry Fahs,
of Dover, 1,300 boxes; Joseph Boring, of
Newberry, 8,000 boxes on four acres of land.
The Ball Hill country, mostly lying in New-
berry Township but adjoining Conewago and
Dover, is noted for the raising of small fruits
and peaches. The land here is a pure red
shale, and generally slopes to the south, ab-
sorbing warm rays of sunlight during the
early spring time. By proper cultivation the
strawberry crop on this land yields luscious
fruit abundantly.

The sandstone, for the trimming of the
Harrisburg Court House, was quarried in
Dover Township by Philip S. Crone. Fur-
nace stone containing sixty cubic feet were
also obtained years ago near the base of the
Conewago Hills. A quarry was opened on the
Drawbaugh farm in 1884 Some years ago a
live toad was found in a hole without a vent in
the center of a large sandstone, in this town-
ship.

INTRODUCTION OF THE PUBLIC SCHOOLS.

John Sharp, who, in 1885, was living
at the age of eighty-one, served thirty-two
years as a school director for Dover Town-



HISTORY OF YORK COUNTY.



ship. He is a son of Capt. George Sharp, ,
who was killed in 1814 by being thrown
from a horse near "Weiglestown. The pres-
ent public school system, under the act of
1834, was not accepted in Dover Township
until the passage of the act of 1848, which
recognized all school districts in the State I
as having accepted the system, and during i
the winter of 1849-50, the great contest |
arose in this township, to introduce the "free
schools." John Sharp, Peter Stough, Peter
Boyer, Jacob Emig, George Beck and Sam-
uel Meisenhelder, composed the first board
of directors. Schools had been regularly
kept up before this time, under the super-
vision of two directors. Andrew Dinsmore,
of York, in the fall of 1849, held the first
examination. The incidents of this examin-
ation would no doubt be interesting to re- j
late, but we forbear to give any of them
here. Some of the directors were not favor-
able to accepting all the provisions of the
school law, and resigned. The court then
appointed John Sharp, Moses Hoover, Adam
May, Sr. , Jacob Sheaffer, and Henry Bender,
to serve. Two of these resigned on account
of opposition to the system. There are now
shools in this township.



EMIG S MILLS.

For more than three- fourths of a century
one of the old-time houses of public enter-
tainment was kept at this place, first by
Derrick Updegraff, who "took up" the land
in 1745. A store has been kept here for
many years, and is now owned by Henry
Emig. Jacob Emig purchased the mil] site
in 1831, of Jacob Frick, who bought it of
Adam Speck in 1813. Tempest Tucker was
the owner of the property for many years
before this time. The mill originated in
colonial times. Martin Emig is the present
owner. The covered wooden bridge across
the Conewago at this place, was built in
1848, by John Finley. By a special act of
the legislature of Pennsylvania, the Cone-
wago is a public highway as far up as the
mouth of the Bermudian. The picturesque
point formed by the confluence of the Cone-
wago and Bermudian, is familiarly known as
the "picket."



THE TOWNSHIP OF CONEWAGO.

THIS township was formed out of a por-
tion of Newberry and Dover. The east-
ern third belonged to the former, and the
western two-thirds to the latter township. It



contains 11,000 acres, according to the survey-
made in October, 1814, by Jacob Spangler
and Daniel Small. Viewers were appointed
whose report was confirmed at the January
term of court in 1818. It was named after
the winding streams that course its northern,
southern and eastern boundary. The nam&
is of Indian origin and means "at the rap-
ids." The Big Conewago flows into the-
river at the foot of the rapids. This town-
ship has the form of a wedge, blocked in be-
tween Manchester and Dover. Newberry
forms its northern boundary. Conewago
Township at the time of its formation con-
tained 245 taxable inhabitants. The assessed!
valuation of real and personal property was
•1185,000. Col.'Henry Stover was the largest
land owner — 328 acres valued at $6,275.
Frederick Hevel and Henry Miller were inn
keepers. Frederick Shetter owned a carding-
mill; Philip Fettrow a saw-mill and hemp-
mill; Andrew Miller an oil mill; John Beck-
er, and Stoehr &Demuth, saw-mill and grist-
mill; Daniel Keeeer, gristmill; John Datis-
man, tailor; John Keener, tailor; Samuel
Parks, nail-maker. The coopers of the town-
ship were Peter Wilt, George Fink, David
Gross, John Hoffman, Michael Weyer, and
George Finck. The weavers were George
Benedict, William Barnes, Henry Brenneman,
Peter Fink, Jacob Frysinger, Jacob Peters,
Adam Keener, Jacob Meyer, Jacob Rupert,
Jacob Schlothour, Henry Vickers, George-
Wintemeyer, John Finck, Michael Benedict,
David Miller and Jacob Wentz. The follow-
ing persons owned distilleries: Peter Grass,.
Frederick Ilgenfritz, Martin Meyer, John
Reeser, Henry Stover, Michael Shettle, Hen-
ry Schmidt, Jacob Stover, Michael Wilt and
Peter Zarger.

CHUBCH HISTORY.

Zion, Lutheran and Reformed Church. —
Near the banks of the little Conewago, on a
gentle elevation with a commanding view of
the surrounding country, stands a large and
handsome building, long since known aa
"Quickel's Church," owned by the Lutheran
and Reformed denominations. Three early
German settlers, Frederick Eichholtz, Lud-
wig Weir and Henry Shunk, in 1767 pur-
chased a tract of land containing thirty acres-
for £7 15s. 9d. This land is now a part
of Jacob Bear's farm, and was at the time of
the purchase located in Dover Township, as
Conewago was not formed until forty years
later. Upon this tract was a stone school
building, the first one erected in that section,
and tradition says was then old. It had been
used for school purposes and occasionally for



CONEWAGO TOWXSHIP.



religious worship. Kev. John George Eager,
an earnest and faithful missionary among the
German settlers, and a man of rare culture
and intelligence, effected an organization of
the Lutherans June 2, 1767, soon after the
purchase of the land. The Reformed congre-
gation was organized about the same time as
the Lutheran. The large tract was sold and
March 20, 1770, a deed was executed by
Michael Quickel and Barbara, his wife, con-
veying two acres and forty-seven perches, the
site of the present church, for a consideration
of 40 shillings, to "Conrad Becker, Sebastian
Fink, Jacob Hake, Paul Wilt, Ludwig Meyer
and George Schmied, elders and trustees of
a chnrch which the Lutherans and Calvinists
(Reformed) now have in this township."
Michael Quickel stipulated in the deed of
conveyance that his wife Barbara should have
a pew daring her life in the new church,
which was built of logs the same year. The
stone building continued to be used for a
parochial school.

For many years these humble worshipers
who gathered here were satisfied with the
log building; eventually it was enlarged,
weather-boarded and rededicated. Becom-
ing old and dilapidated, and not large
enough to accommodate the congi'egations,in
1850, after being used eighty-three years, was
removed and the present large brick church
erected. In 1881 it was remodeled and sur-
mountedwith a spire 100 feet high, and a bell
weighing 1, 500 pounds was purchased. Rev.
C. J. Deininger became pastor of the Luth-
eran congregation in April, 1858, since which
time to his death in 1885 he administered
here the rite of baptism to 690 infants, 63
adults, officiated at 333 funerals and con-
firmed 419 members. The Lutheran pastors
who have served this congregation since its
organization in order of succession have been
as follows: Revs. Eager (Baugher), Lucas
Raus (Rouse), John Nicholas Kurtz, Jacob
Goering, John George Schmucker, A. H.
Lochman, C. J. Deininger and J. Henry
Leeser. The present church membership of
the Lutheran denomination is 425.

The Reformed Congregation was organ-
ized in 1765, and at first ministered to by
the pastors of the York Church, among
whom were Revs. George Geistweite, James
Ross Riley, Lewis Mayer, Daniel Ziegler
and David Bossier. Rev. Rhinehart Smith
is the present pastor. The church was incor-
porated in 1790.

Green Spring Church. — This church was
btiilt in 1877 by S. Aurand, preacher in
charge. The following ministers were pres-
ent when dedicated : S. Aurand, H. W. Buck



and H. AV. Gross. The trustees are Samuel
Bahn, John Thomas and William Linebaugh.
S. Aurand and H. W. Gross were the first
pastors, followed by S. Yearlck, C. M. Fink-
binder, H. [D. Greninger, M. J. Snyder and
L. E. Crumbling. The last named is pastor
at present.

THE VILLAGE OF STRIKESTOWN.

This town, which originated in 1800, was
for many years called Mount Pleasant. It
is pleasantly situated ten miles from York,
near the northern part of the township, and
has two or three stores, a hotel and a popu-
lation of 160. The manufacture of cigars
has been ^n important industry here for half
a century.

The property owners of the village in 1819,
were George King; Widow Miller; Charles
Heyer; Peter Redman; Charles Lindeman;
Frederick Miller; Frederick Hevel, inn
keeper; Martin Shetter; John Strine, cord-
wainer; Henry Miller, inn keeper; Elizabeth
Zorger; Frederick Stoner, justice of the
peace; Christian Strine; Godfrey Lenhart;
Jacob Zorger, wheelwright; JacobWolf, tobac-
conist; Conrad Sandreman; Jacob Keyer,
cordwainer; Widow Weyer. Jacob Stoehr, of
Manchester Township owned one house, and
George Neuman, one. Michael Weyer was a
blacksmith. In the war of 1812 he was at
Baltimore.

Mount Pleasant Chapel was built in 1872
at a cost of $1,500. The building committee
were Barnhart Zorger, Daniel Wehrley and
John A. Krafi't. It was dedicated by Rev.
William Kramer as a union chapel, all
orthodox religious denominations are allowed
to worship in it. At present it is used by
the United Brethren in Chi-ist, whose pastor
is Rev. Wagner, and also by the Old School
Brethren (Dunkers). The preachers of this
denomination are Revs. Wiley, Cook and
Daniel Altland.

The Strinestown Union Sunday-school
meets in this building. It numbers about
fifty members and is superintended by John
A. Toomy. It was organized in 1859. Barn-
hart Zorger, who was the first superintend-
ent, remained in the position twenty years.

PUBLIC SCHOOLS.

There are nine public schools in Conewago;
the names of them are as follows: Bower's,
Strinestown, Fink's, Rudy's, Crone's, Bear's,
Green Spring, Shettel's and Neiman's.

INDIAN RELICS.

The fertile and alluvial flats along thp



HISTORY OF YORK COUNTY.



Conewago Creek were favorite resorts for the
red man, especially parts of the tribes of the
Conoys and Shawanese, who were numerous
near the mouth of the stream and on the oppo-
site side of the Susquehanna. In company
with George Ensminger, the writer found evi-
dent traces of an Indian burying ground near
Green Spring. Along the Conewago, Indian
pipes, scalping knives, tomahawks, spear
points and arrow heads were discovered. On
the laud of Barnhart Zorger, near Strines-
town, perfect arrow heads were found and
close by were piles of spauls of dolorite, the
same kind of stone as the arrow heads, show-
ing that here they made arrows from the
rough stone. This was the site of an Indian
village.

HISTORICAL NOTES.

John Garrettson, in 1742, built the first
mill along the Conewago, possibly on the
Newberry side of the stream. He was one
of the first Quaker settlers, and owned the
rich alluvial lands on the north side of the
stream immediately below the bridge. The
large mill, north of Strinestown, is now owned
by Mr. Cline. On lands owned by H. B.
Strine, three quarters of a mile northwest of
Strinestown, is the spot of one of the first in-
dustries of this section. It was a very old
mill in 1820, and was used in grinding grain,
with a fulling-mill and carding-mill attached.
John Ellis, in 1850, was the last owner,
when it was torn away.

On the roadleading from Quickel's Church
to Lewisberry once stood a tannery. The
business was carried on by Martin Copen-
hafer. Basket-making is now, and long has
been, an important industry, carried on by
many inhabitants along the Conewago Hills.
John Steffee, for many years, conducted
a pottery from native clay. After the father
retired, the two sons continued the business,
Gabriel near the " Seven Stars Hotel," and
Adam near Strinestown.

A thrilling and fatal accident occurred
along the Conewago near the mouth of Ben-
nett's Run. It was during the time of the
early settlement, and according to tradition
was as follows: A man named Sipe went out
hunting wild turkeys and had a tame turkey
on his back. He used a turkey bone as a
whistle to call the game and the turkey on
his back would answer. This was done in
order to attract the wild turkeys to him that
he might shoot them. He was thus crawling
on his hands and knees, when another hunter
who saw only the turkey on his back and not
the man, through the dense thicket, fired at
his supposed game. The ball passed through
the man's neck and killed him.



Ana Plow, an eccentric individual, who
before 1812 lived north of Newberry, was ac
customed to place iron bars over the top of the
chimney of her house in order to keep witches
out.

Militia parades, were held near the west
end of the township on land now owned by
John N. Bull, Col. Stover had more than a
local fame as a commander. He was suc-
ceeded by Col. Bear. There was a volunteer
company in 1848, commanded by Capt.
Eisenhart of Dover Township and Capt.
Daniel Motter afterward the proprietor of the
Motter House in York. Thia company was
called out to assist in quelling the Philadel-
phia riots, in 1844.

During the Confederate invasion of 1863,
a scouting party of Stuart's cavalry entered
the west end of the township captured a
number of horses fi'om the farmers, and ob-
tained coffee, sugar and some wearing ap-
parel at a store then kept by Eli S. Quickel.

There are veins of valuable sandstone in
this township. The stones used in erecting
the front of the York jail in 1855, were ob-
tained in Conewago. Henry Kochenour had
the contract to furnish them.

Henry Kochenour in 1825, assisted in kill-
ing the last wolf that lived in the Conewago
Hills. Deer and wild turkeys were seen
much later, foxes and raccoons are still plen-
tiful.

Near the southern base of the Conewago
Hills, there issues forth in all its crystal beauty
a constant stream of water, which has long
been known as " Green Spring. " Just as the
snow and frost of winter disappear, there is
a dense growth of grass around the spring,
which fact gave this spot its interesting
name. In early times it was a favorite
resort for the timid deer and the voracious
wolf, which harbored in the adjoining hills.

Near this spring, in a public schoolhouse,
a union Sunday-school has long since flour-
ished. It was superintended several years
by A. W. Ensminger, who was accidentally
drowned in the Conewago.'

Samuel Fettrow was an eccentric though
intelligent individual, and for many years
lived alone in the Conewago Hills. He was
born in Fairview Township, and was a de-
scendant of a very respectable ancestry that
came from Holland. He claimed to be a
doctor, lawyer and surveyor, and had an
office on the summit of the mountain. He
always wore a white crowned high silk hat,
light colored suit, and was never without an
umbrella. He boiled his drinking water in
order to purify it. His own burial casket he
made himself, long before his death. The



PARADISE TOWNSHIP.



limestone pyramid at the head of his grave,
in the burying ground adjoining Eohler's
meeting- house, was made by his own hands.



THE TOWNSHIP OF PAKADISE.

THIS township, which originally included
Jackson, was erected under the act of the
provincial Assembly of 1739, and laid off in
1747 by Joseph Pidgeon- a surveyor who
lived in Philadelphia County. Doubtless the
wooded hills which are partly in its southern
limits, were named after him. Its original
shape was rectangular, with irregular lines
for its boundaries. The word Paradise is
significantly interesting. A township by same
name had been organized in Lancaster Coun-
ty, in the beautiful Pequa Valley, a few
years before. These two townships are the
only ones in America so highly honored,
though a number of villages have assumed
the name. Possibly the beautiful surround-
ings or the enchanting view from the sum-
mit of the hills, afforded to the early settlers
or the surveyor, led them to appropriate this
significant word to designate the name of
their new township. The land was mostly
taken up by Germans.

In 1783 Paradise had 141 houses, 116
barns, estimated area 19,344 acres of settled
land, five mills and a population of 943. A
considerable portion of the township, which
is now fertile, was a woody swamp, hence
called by the first German settlers "Holz-
schwamm.'' In early days it was not thickly
settled.

The population in 1880 was 1,372; the
number of taxable inhabitants in 1883 was
426; valuation of real estate, $765,890.

The township, since the formation of Jack-
son from it, is an irregular parallelogram, its
length more than equal to twice its breadth.
Dover joins it on the north, Jackson on the
east, Heidelberg on the south, and Adams
County on the west. The soil is in general
sandy; the northern part is red shale. The
York & Gettysburg Turnpike diagonally
crosses it.

CHURCHES.

The Holz-Schwamm Church. — This his-
toric old church originated in 1775. Rev.
Jacob Goering, who then lived at Carlisle,
was first pastor. Kev. Dr. Schmucker was
pastor in 1809. Kev.Conrad Reiman in 1817,
who lived in Abbottstown. It was first owned
by the Lutherans, and the congregation for



many years ministered to, by the pastors of St.
Matthew's Church of Hanover. Kev. Jacob
Lischy, as early as 1750, performed the
duties of a missionary through this section
for the German Reformed denomination, and
Rev. William Otterbein, of the same denom-
ination, for a short time preached here.

On February 15, 1826, an article of agree-
ment was formed between the Lutheran and
German Reformed congregations, which
gave to each equal rights and privileges to
the church, church property and burying-
ground. Both congregations appointed a
day to meet in said church on account of a
disturbance that took place concerning the
title made for the land and all the improve-
ments thereon erected. Rev. Jacob Albert,
the pastor, was appointed chairman of the
meeting, and Jacob Ernst, secretary. Rev.
Albert stated to the meeting that the original
deed of the land was granted to the Luther-
ans only, but as the Reformed congregation
had assisted for a number of years past to
improve the building, graveyard and fences,
he requested all present at the meeting to
decide whether the "Reformed people, or
Presbyterians" shall have the same right as
the Lutherans. It was unanimously agreed
to, and also that the elders and wardens then
belonging to the two congregations shall
enter into an article and bind themselves
that none of said congregation shall be dis-
turbed, and that one denomination shall have
the same power as the other. "That the
words in the old deed which saith 'only for
the use of the Lutherans,' shall be consid-
ered null and void forever, and shall also be
for the use of the Lutherans and Reformers,
or Presbyterians, forever." The following-
named church officers bound themselves and
their successors to fulfill the article of agree-
ment: John Trostle and Ludwig Swartz,
elders, and William Trostle, Samuel Zerfas,
John Baker and Daniel March, wardens of
said congregations, Lutheran and Reformed.
It was witnessed by Henry King, John Weh-
ler and George Trostle. It was acknowl-
edged before Jacob Ernst, Esq. , on February
27, 1826. The name Presbyterian was fre-
quently given to the German Reformed
Church in early days.

Since 1826 those who ministered to the
Reformed congregation were Revs. Vander-
sloot, Charles Helfenstein, Daniel Ziegler
for twenty-seven years; Jacob Kehm, four
years; Jacob Ziegler, eight years, and I. S.
Weisz, D. D., twelve years. The last named, in
1885, is pastor of the congregation which
numbers 250 members.

Rev. A. G. Deininger was pastor of the



HISTORY OF YOKK COUNTY.



Lutheran congregation for tifty-one years
in succession, and died September 28, 1880,
aged eighty-tive years, eleven months and
twenty-six days. He was succeeded by Kev.
D. Sell, who resides in Abbotstown. Lu-
theran membership, 500 communicants. In
1884 the present church was frescoed, cai -
peted, chandeliers and new pulpit purchased
— all at a cost of $1,100. Four acres of land
is church property.

Paradise Catholic Church. — The land on
which this church now stands, was purchased
by Frederick Brant, in 1782, and paid for in
Continental money, which soon thereafter
became worthless. Brant was an economical
German, and prospered as a farmer and mil-
ler. His large grist mill, which stood by the
stream north of the church, however, burned
down about 1816, and was never rebuilt.
Religious services were held in a hall of the
old Brant mansion at an early date, by the
Catholic people of the vicinity, and con-
ducted by visiting clergy from Conewago
Chapel, near McSherry's town. Upon the
death of Frederick Brant, in 1822, aged
seventy- four years, he bequeathed to the
Catholic Church, one half of the proceeds of
his farm of 260 acres of valuable land,
for the education of young men for the
priesthood. The present large and com-
modious church building of an excellent
quality of blue and grey sandstone, was
erected in 1843, and consecrated with
imposing ceremonies. Henry Kuhn and
Henry Felix, were the masons. For a time
a parochial school was kept in the basement
of the church. The auditorium was finely
frescoed by experienced workmen, in 1880.
A fine pipe organ has been placed to the rear
of the room on a gallery, and a well trained
choir furnishes the music.

Altland's Meeting House. — About three-
fourths of a mile east of Bigmount, the
German Baptists, or Dunkers, worship in a
neatly constructed brick building. It was
erected as a union meeting house ; any ortho-
dox denominations are allowed to hold relig-
ious services. At present, it is used only by
the German Baptists, an honest, unassuming
and industrious people. Nearly all the
members of that denomination are farmers,
and are among the well-to-do people of the
township. In 1853. they departed from
their former custom of conducting religious
meetings in the houses and barns of members,
and assisted in the erection of this building,
familiary known as "Altland's Meeting
House." In the year 1880, it was blown
down by a high wind storm, but was immedi-
ately rebuilt.



The preachers who conduct the services in
both the English and German languages are
Daniel Altland, William "Weiley, Hezekiah
Cook, John Eaffensberger and Emanuel
Gochenour. Trustees are Isaac King,
Thomas Julius and Cornelius Spangler.
This meeting house belongs to the Lower
Conewago District, composed of four places
of worship, including this one. One is lo-
cated in Washington township, on the Ber-
mudian Creek; another near Dillsburg, and
another in Strinestown.

PARADISE BKICK TAKD.

In the year 1858, P. S. Alwine, began
burning bricks, on his farm in this town-
ship, and has continued the business in
the same place ever since, even during the
exciting times of the civil war. At this
yard, about 300,000 bricks were made an-
nually, or about 8,000,000 in the twenty-
six years of its existence. About 3,000
cords of wood have been consumed in burn-
ing the bricks. Mr. Alwine owns a large
yard and kiln at New Oxford, and one at
Spring Grove. At each of these places, he
manufactures about 700,000 bricks annually.

NAMES OF TAXABLES IN 1783.

The following is a list of the taxable in-
habitants of Paradise (which then included
Jackson) in 1783:

.John Appleman, David Griffith,

Philip Altland, David Griffith. Jr.,

Jacob Amend, Valentine Graff,

Daniel Amend, Peter Geiss,

Samuel Arnold, Wendel Geier,

George Beck, Charles Keim,

Henry Berkheimer, Christian Keim,

Peter Brihner, M. Herman (tannery),

Thomas Beissel, Tobias Haberstock (still),

Nicholas Bentz, William Kasper,

Andrew Bentz, John Heidler,
Fred. Brandt, grist-mill, Andrew Haberstock,

David Baker, Patrick Haney,

Peter Bobb, Conrad Henry (still),

Joseph Baltzly, Tobias Heltzel,

Peter Boose, Andrew Hershey,



Online LibraryJohn GibsonHistory of York County Pennsylvania From the Earliest Time to the Present → online text (page 139 of 218)