Samuel Harden.

Early life and times in Boone County, Indiana, giving an account of the early settlement of each locality, church histories, county and township officers from the first down to 1886 ... Biographical sketches of some of the prominent men and women ... online

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Online LibrarySamuel HardenEarly life and times in Boone County, Indiana, giving an account of the early settlement of each locality, church histories, county and township officers from the first down to 1886 ... Biographical sketches of some of the prominent men and women ... → online text (page 3 of 38)
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is White Lick; flowing south it enters Hendricks County, leav-
ing Perry in section eleven. Fayette is located on this stream,,
and is the only town in the township. Here is the voting^
place as well as the center of trade. A separate account will
be given under the head of "Sketch of Fayette." This town-
ship was settled as early as 1830. Among the early settlers
were Edmund Shirly, Jesse Turner, Alexander Fortner, Aaroit
Smith, Jno. K. Edwards and his father, the Doyles, Eli
Smith and his father, the Slaigles, the Smiths, i. e. D. W.
and B. H. Smith and their father, the Glendenings, Peter
Keney, the Sullivans, the Dickersons, the Charaberses, G. W.



BOONE COUNTY, INDIANA. 27

Lumkins, Dauiei Leap, Thos. Leap, E. WoUen and E.
Thornly. Mrs. Thornly, the oldest woman in the county, is
yet living; she is ninety-one years old. These settlers were
soon joined by the Wilsons, Elijah S. Williams, Thos. Jack-
son, the Penningtons and Jos. Belt. It is said that a Mr,
Schenck taught the first subscription school in Perry Town-
ship in the year 1836. The Baptists held the first religious
meetings in private houses. A few years later a society was
formed known as " Mt. Tabor." A house was built by that
society, and now it is known far and wide as Old Mt. Tabor,
(See a sketch of it in another place under the head of " Sketch
of Mt. Tabor Baptist Church.") Among the ministers here
were Isaac Leap, Peter Keney, and the elder Edwards,
Shepherdsville, in the eastern part of the township, is a small
place. Mr. Glendenen is the proprietor of the store here.
There is a postoffice also, which is a great convenience to the
people in this part of Perry. The soil is generally good and
is in a high state of cultivation. Ditching is going on in
every direction. Many tasty residences are springing up.
The roads are also improving. One of the oldest roads in the
county passes through Perry Township, known as the Indian-
apolis and Lafayette State Road. It is now and has been for
sixty years a highway very much traveled. The population
of Perry Township in 1870 was 1,209 ; in 1880 it was 1,240.
The number of voters in 1886 was 257. The number of
.school children in 1884 was 402. There are eight school
houses in the township; two are of brick and six frame. This
is up to the year 1886. The following have served as Trus-
tees: J. B. Howard, Etlward Woolen, John W. Doyle, Isaac
Leap, William Schenck, Eli Smith, Peter Keney, John K.
Edwards, Preston Smith, A. J. Smith and Thomas Jackson,
elected April, 1886.



28 EARLY LIFE AND TIMES IN



SUGAR CREEK TOWNSHIP.

Sugar Creek Township occupies the northeast corner of
the county. It is six miles from east to west, and five and
one-half miles from north to south. It contains thirty-three
sections, and is bounded as follows : On the north by Clinton
County, on the east by A^'ashingtou Township, on the south
by Jefferson Townsliip, and on the west by ^Montgomery County.
It is drained principally by Sugar Creek, which enters the
township from Washington Township at section twenty-five.
Flowing west it leaves the township at section thirty-one, and
enters Montgomery County. About one-half of the township
lies on each side of the creek. The Indianapolis, Cincinnati
& Lafayette Railroad passes through the township, entering
at the southeast corner. It passes through Thorntown and
leaves the township near where sections sixteen and seventeen
unite. Wolf Creek flows northwest and enters Sugar Creek
near the center of the township. Prairie Creek enters Sugar
Creek at a short distance northeast of Thorntcwn. Morri-
son's Creek flows from the northeast and enters Sugar
Creek at section thirty, on the west side of the town-
ship. Some of the finest land to be found anywhere can be
seen here. That part known far and M'ide as " Sugar Plain "
is the garden spot of the township and perliaps county. The
township is number one as a rule, and coupled with this we
find it is highly cultivated, has excellent buildings, commod-
ious barns and other evidences of thrift and prosperity. Orig-
inally there was some of the finest timVjer here, such as walnut,
poplar, oak and ash. A few remaining trees and stumps tell
what it must have been in its former state. Thorntown,
the only town in the townsiilp, located on Sugar Creek, is a
town of some note. In another ])lace we will say more about
it under the head of •'Sketch of Tliorntown." The township
up to the year 1828 was in the Indian Reserve, a strip of land
ten miles square, occu[>ied and owned by a tribe of Miami



BOONE C(»UNT\', INDIANA. 29

Indians. They remained until the year 1833 or '34. Here
may vet be seen some of their burying grounds. Thornto-A'n
was at one time the headquarters for French traders as early
as the year 1800. They kept up a trade with the Indians and
early trappers. At one time near Thorntown the Indians
raised corn. Some of the people living there now remember
seeing the hills where the corn grew, as well as other evidences
of cultivation. Sugar Greek Township is historic ground.
Here the Indian wooed his dusky mate, danced the war dance,
sung the songs of the hunter, smoked t1ie pipe of peace and
buried their dead in a sitting position. Those who were actors
then have long since gone to the happy hunting grounds.
After the Government came into possession of the Reserve the
laud was offered for sale at Cra^vtbrdsville in November, 1829.
Among the early purchasers were Cornelius Westfall, William
Kenworthy, Samuel Lucas, paying from S1.2o to S4.00 per
acre for it. The first settler was Geo. Harness, with the small
family of wife and twelve children. This must have been in
the year 1830. Mr. Harness seems to have had a hard time.
After he and his wife had worked in harness in more ways
than one he finally lost his land. He lived to the age of 108
years, dying in 187G on the Michigan Road in Clinton County,
Indiana. This township was organized in 1831. The first
election was held at the house of William Kenworthy, April,
1832, when Benjamin Sweeney, and Jas. Van Eaton were
elected Justices of the Peace, and Green Foster and David
Laudrum, Constables. About this time quite a number of
families came; among them were Joshua Burnham. Jas. Scott,
Joshua and Jas. Van Eaton, John Skeen, Wm. Gypson, Csaac
(iypson (now living). Later came Samuel Brenton, Hugh
Moffitt, Jeremiah Moffitt, Mr. Benson, ^Slr. Baker, Mr. Blue,
Wm. Childers, John Miller, Adrian Ball, IsuaeX'ojtbot, Benj.
Lewis, John Furgeson, Abraham Utter, Wm. Turner, Xathaa
-Maroney, Wm. Payne, Robert Cook, Robert Morrison, Thos.
Goldsbury, Eli Goldsbury, Samuel Cass, Adam Boyd, Wm.



30 EARLY LIFE AND TIMES IN

Auden, Asa Fall, J. S. McConnell, Samuel Van Eaton, Elish
Riley, Geo. Osburn and Oliver Craven.

The first mill was built by John G. Pierce, on Prairie
Creek, in the spring of 1833. This was a saw mill. Silas
Kenworthy built the first grist mill on Sugar Creek. Bonham
Kester built the first carding mill in 1837. The first steam
flouring mill was built in 1856 by David Biuford and Henry
Wetheral, just south of Thorntown. The first white child
was born at the house of Green Forster in 1831. The first
death was Jemima Harness, October, 1829. The second death
was Mary A. ^Yestfall. She was the first person buried in
the old cemetery north of Thorntown. The first marriage was
that of John Pauly and Emily Sweeney, in July, 1832. The
first religious meeting was held at the house of Cornelius
Westfall, by Claybourn Young. The first church organiza-
tion in the township was in 1832; Stephen Ball was the
preacher. Soon after the Presbyterians organized with Clay-
burn as minister. This was in 18)3. A few years later the
Quakers built a log house that served them several years, when
they built their present commodious house on the site of the
old one west of Thorntown. The Christians, in 1842, organ-
ized a society, and first held meetings in private houses, as all
other organizations did. The Missionary Baptist was tlie last
to form a society. This they did a few years later. All now
have houses to worship in in different parts of the county.
The first tan-yard was started by Zachariah Gipson, in the
summer of 1832. The first merchant was A. H. Baldridge.
Isaac Morgan kept the first tavern. The first tailor was
Robert Hamil. The first carpenter was John Alexander, the
first blacksmith Mosas McCIure and the first shoemaker
Thomas Young. The first hatter was Samuel Daily. The
first M-agonmaker was George Mcljaughlin. The first pot-
ter, Oliver Craven, now livino: in Thorntown. The first
saddler was Mark A. Micham and the first doctor was Mr.
Farmer, foHowed by Drs. Anions, Davis, Ephraim Rudasill,
W. P, Davis, Martin \V. Gentry and J. J. Nesbitt, who was



BOONE COUNTY, INDIANA. 31

afterwards County Treasurer. He died in Ohio in 1864. The
first attorney was Rufus A. Lockwood, followed by Jacob
Angle, and John S. Davis. The first postoffice was opened at
4 he house of Wra. Kenworthy, east of Thorntown, in 1832.
Eobert Hamil was the first postmaster proper in Thorntown.
The first school teacher in Thorntown was Jefferson Hillis.
Mrs. Polly Gipson has been the longest resident in the place.
:She is the daughter of James Scott, who- came in 1829. Oliver
•Craven has served as Justice of the Peace over forty years.-
The population of the county in 1870 was 3,138. In 1880 it
was 3,015. There are ten school houses, nine of which are
brick and one frame. The number of school children in 1884
was 535. Number of voters in 1886 was 713. Value of
school property S12,600. The following have served as Trus-
tees: N. W. Weakley, William Kirby, J. T. McCorkle, M. E.
McCorkle, Joseph Cones, G. W. Cones, Robert Reese, I. N.
Wilson, A. C. Clark and J. M. Wilson, elected April, 1886.

UNION TOWNSHIP.

This township is bounded on the north by Marion Town-
ship, on the east by Hamilton County, on the south by Eagle
Township and on the west by Center and Worth Townships.
It contains twenty-five sections. The surface along Big Eagle
and Mount's Run is somewhat broken, but is well adapted for
grazing purposes. Big Eagle flows through the township from
north to south, crossingr the Michio^an Road one mile south of
Rosston and one-half mile north of Northfield in section
three. Mount's Run flows through the township, entering
Eagle Creek at the south part of section ten. Finiey Creek
comes in from the northeast and enters Eagle a short distance
southwest of Northfield. Jackson's Run also enters the town-
ship. The Michigan Road passes through the entire town-
ship, entering at the south in section fourteen, running a little
to the west of north and leaving in section twenty-eight, where
it enters Marion township. It is perhaps the best naturally



32 EARLY LIFE AND TIMKS IX

drained of all the townships in the county, excepting Efuj,le-
The settlement of Union dates back as far as 1826, when tnt-
following pioneers entered the wilderness: Jesse Lane^ Ed-
ward Lane, John I^ane. Samuel Lane, Benj. Cruse, Henry
Koontz, John L, Koontz, Jacob Johns, Geo. ^Yalk;er, Riley
B. Hogshire, George Shirts, John Davis, Jas. Richardson and
the Scdgwicks. Soon after came Henry Nichols, Jacob Tip-
ton, Jacob Jones, James and Wm. Ross, the Dooleys, Shoe-
makers, Washington Hutton, John Dulin, the Stephensons,
Peterses, Alexanders, Wesley Smith, Kincaids, Wra. O. Carey,
Vances, Andrew Harvey, John Pitman, James Alexander,,
Abraham Newcomer, tlie Giffords, Hicksous, Henry ?vl. Mar-
vin, John Mur[)hy, Jas. D\e, Wysongs, John A. Dulin, Levi
P. Shoemaker, Nelsons, Hollingsworths, Levi King, James
Berrv, Henrv Good and Isaac Dve. The first relig^ious meet-
ings were held in 1832, at tlie house of Mr. Sedgwick. They
were conducted by Thos. Brown. The first election was held
in 1834. when John Berry was elected Justice of the Peace.
He was succeeded by Abner Sanborn. The first mill was
built and run by Hiram McQuindy. The Methodists built
the first church. They were soon after followed by the Bap-
tists. There are now several good churches, representlng-
uearly all the denominations. There is a Methodist Church
at Northfield, also a Seventh-Day Adventist Church, erected
and dedicated December, 1886. The Baptists have a brick
church at Mount's Run. There is a cemetery there where are
buried a number of pioneers. Northfield, one of the oldest
villages of the county, is located on the Michigan Road. This
has been the voting place for a number of years. There is a
postofiice also. Among the early physicians were Dr. Mc-
Leod, Dr. J. S. Hardy and Dr. Presly. Jacob Tilton, Hiram ^
McQuiddy and Chauncey Cole were early merchants. Ross-
ton, two miles north, was laid out about the time the Ander-
son & St. Louis Railroad was surveyed. It occupies land
owned by the Ross boys. There is qtiite a little trade here,
especially since the railroad was finished from Anderson to




BENJAMIN BOOHER.



BOONE COU>TY, INDIANA. 33

Leb.inon, Jaouary 22, 1887. There is a postoffice here, two
variety stores, and a Masonic Lodge. A switch will soon be
put in, when it will be a shipping point of some importance.
The population of the town.ship in 1870 was 1,057; in 1880
it was 1,092 ; the number of voters, 250 ; the number of school
children in 1886 was 356. There are eight school houses,
three of which are brick and five frame. The Methodists have
a society at Big Spring and a good frame church. This has been
a popular place for meetings for the last forty years, and many
small camp-meetings are held here. The house is located near
the Marion Township line. The line between Marion and Union
Townships divide the village of Big Spring. Union Town-
ship has made good progress as a rule in the way of buildings,
roads, schools, ditching, etc. Many of the pioneers are dead.
A few remain while others have moved away. Could some
of them visit the township now what changes would greet them
on every hand. The little cabin in the woods gone, the little
bridle-path turned into a pike, the green woods into well-cul-
tivated fields. The pioneers here, as well as in other town-
ships, had much to contend with in their new homes, no mills,,
no schools and no neighbors. But deprived of them they had
their enjoyments. The people were sociable in the extreme.
Their wants were comparatively few. The Trustees are as
follows: J. F. Stephenson, Geo. Shoemaker, J, M. Koons, H.
M. Marvin, R. G. Nelson, W. H. Dooley, Geo. Norwood, L.
P. Shoemaker, J, M. Reed, Jas. Hubanks, and Geo. Stepheu-
scfn, elected November, 1886.

WASHINGTON TOWNSHIP.

This township occupies the west center of the north tier of
townships. Sugar Creek passes through from east to v/est.
About one-third of the township lies north and two-thirds
south of the creek. Spring Creek flo^vs from the southeast
part to the northwest, entering Sugar Creek in section thirty,
3



34 E.vKLY lAFE AND TIMES IN

at the S. Titus farm. Prairie Creek enters the township from
Center at section ten, flows west and leaves the tc)wnshi;j at
section seven, where it enters Sugar Creek Township, About
one-thirtf of this township was originally embraced iu the
"'^Indian Reserve/' which was bought by the Government iu
1828. This township contains thirty-five and a half sections,
-and nearly all is of the very best land. Here, where well-
cultivated fields are now found, originally stood some of the
finest timber. The Indianapolis, Cincinnati c^ Lafayette
Railroad runs across the southwest corner of the tow^u-
ship, Hazelrigg station is named after the late H. G.
Hazelrigg, who formerly owned the land in and about the
.station, Mechauicsburg (Reese Mill P, O,) is located in the
eastern part of the township near where Brown's Wonder
unites with Sugar Creek. The first settlers began to arrive
liere about 1832, when the township was organized. The fol-
lowing are the names of some who came first: The first elec-
tion w^as held at the house of John S. Polk, A])rii, 1832,
when John Slocura and J, S. Polk were elected Justices of the
Peace, sixty votes being cast. John Pauly and ^Vra. Brown
were elected constables at the .same time. Among the first
Tjcttlers were John X, Fall, John Wilky, Joshua Allen, ^Vm.
West, Able Pennington. The above named persons came be-
fore the sale of land in 1829. After that time the followiujr
persons came : Joshua Burnham, Benj. Crose, James Scoit,
Samuel Reese, John Slocum, Thos, McCann, Wra. Pauly, Jas.
Turner, Benj, Sweeney, John ^Morehead, Jacob Skeen, Abrani
Buckhaltor, Samuel and James Foreman, John Kersey, Benj,
aud Ste])hen Titus, Xathnniel Titus, Samuel Casou and John
-CradleVmugh. Among other settlers are John Higgins, Robr.
Slocum, tiie Becks, Sleighbecks, Chambers, Thornberrys,
John Graham, the Buntin.s, Goldsbeys,- Bowens, AV. W.
Philli[)~. Campbells, Xathan Garrett, Richies, Boni'.m
iStout, Jas, P. Alills, Samuel Long and Jos. Hollings-
worth. The first grist mill was built by David Ross in 1831,
on Spring Brancli. Bor.am Stout built the first grist mill at



BOONE COUNTY, INDIANA.



9r^



Meohanicsburg in 1838. John and Koah Hardesty built the
mill now known as the "Adney " mill on Sugar Creek in 1840.
Michael and Augustus Chase built the Ben Crose mill. The
first church was a log structure built by the Baptists in 1835,
on the David Ross farm. The first meetings were held at the
house of ^Vm. Pauly about the year 1830. The first school
was taught by Daniel Ellis. Jas. P. Mills built the first tan-
yard in the township. The township has improved rapidly
during the last few years. A system of drainage has been
built in every direction, and much of the land is in a high
state of cultivation. ]\Iechanicsburg, the center of quite a
local trade, was laid out in 1835 by Jas. Snow. Hazelrigg
Station is also a very good town. The Casou graveyard, in
the south part of the township, is one of the oldest burying
places, as well as Bethel. Here many monuments are erected
to the memory of the pioneers. A small cemetery is located
on Brush Creek in the northwest part of the township; also
one south of Pike's Crossing. Pike's Crossing is five miles
north of Lebanon, at the crossing of the Frankfort and
Lebanon Pike and the Strawtown and Thorntown Road.
There is a postofficc and several nice residences here. The
farms show every evidence of thrift and prosperity. The
population in 1870 was 1,391; in 1880 it was 1,352. Num-
ber of voters in 1886 was 349; number of school children in
1886 was 441. There are ten brick school houses in the town-
ship. The following have acted as Trustees : John Higgius,
H. G. Hazelrigg, Robert Slocum, B. F. Lumpkins, J. S. Har-
rison, Albert Helm and Robert Herr, elected in April, 188G.
Washington Township is the only one in the county that has
a Township House, that is, a place where the voting is done
and other township meetings held. It is a brick building,
centrally located, on or near the site of the old Bethel Church,
and where there is a cemetery.

• 1550984



«.'1>X



36 EARLY LIFE AND TIMES IN



WORTH TOWNSHIP.



The above township contains twenty-one sections. It was
created in 1851, out of territory taken from adjoining town-
ships. There are no water courses here. The extreme head-
waters of Fishback have their source in the south part of
Worth. The Indianapolis, Cincinnati & Lafayette Railroad
passes through from the southeast to the northwest, dividing
the townships into equal parts. Whitestown, on the railroad
and near the center, is the voting place and the headquarters
for the business transactions of the township. Holmes Station,
founded by John Holmes, was in earlier days quite a business
place. Mr. Holmes built a warehouse about the year 1860.
At one time a large amount of grain was taken in here, but
of late years the business has been discontinued. A separate
account of Whitestown will be found under the head of " Sketch
of Whitestown." Worth is without doubt the levelest town-
ship in the county and contains as fine land as can be found in
Indiana. The farmers have testec to perfection the benefit of
drainage, thousands upon thousands of dollars having been
expended. Could the tile that is buried under the ground be
exposed on the surface the ground would be red.

At one time within the memory of the writer Worth Town-
ship was a gloomy looking place. In any direction you might
look the vast forest would greet you on one hand and a sea of
water all around running at will. Among the early pioneers
to attack the forests in this part of the county were the fol-
lowing: Beginning in the year 1830 Richard Hull, John and
James McCord and James White. This little band were soon
joined by Thos. Harmon, Adam Kettering, Joseph White and
John Smith. No county can get along without a John Smith,
and he came. The fact is he always comes, and it is curious
that we don't run out of material, but the supply equals the
demand in this as well as other cases. A few years later the
following persons came: Philip Lucus, John Neese, Philip



BOONE COUNTY, INDIANA. 37

L<ncas, Solomon Neese, Abraham Hedrick, Mosos Neese, J«ohn
Isenhour, Louis and George llauser, David Ray, Benjamin
Booher, Samuel Ray, Henry Lucas, George Lucas, Abraiiam
!^seese, William Stateu, Cris:^opher Bowers, Daniel Biick,
John Peters, the Sanders family, the Laughners, Schoolers,
Utrerbacks, Engledoves, Harmons, Otingers, Bohannans and
Goods. The first school was taught by Henry Lucas, in
1S37. He was for many years identified with his township,
serving as justice and trustee for several years. He was a
good man and a firm friend to his county and township and
spent the most of his life here. He died recently in the vvest,
the time and place we are unable to give. Among the early
ministers we find Rev. John Good, Sen., J. A. Rudasill, Rev.
E. S. Henkle, John Good, Jun., and Rev. Livengood. The
number of voters in 1886 was 342 ; number of school children,
533; number of school houses, 8. The growth of Worth has
been marvelous. The population in 1870 was 1,342; in 1880
it was 1,425. The school houses are all of l)rick. The fol-
lowing have served as trustees: Henry Lucas, Jos. Westner,
Geo. Hauser, Geo. Hedrick, John Schooler, and Samuel N.
Good, elected in April, 1886. ^ ,

/ / %

THE CITY OF LEBANON.

In pursuance to an act of the Legislature of 1830, this
-county was organized, and in conformity to the same act, the
Governor of the State was authorized to appoint five commission-
•ers, whose duty it was to locate the county seat of this county.
Three of these fivs commissioners for this purpose met near
the center of the county about the 1st of May, 1831. It was
their duty, according to the law, to locate the site for the county
seat within two miles of the center of the county. After pros-
pecting various sites near the center of the county, tiiey finally
•came on to the tract of land where Lebanon is now located.
This tract of land then belonged to Colonel Kinnard, in which



38 EARLY LIFE AND TIMES IX

it appears that Colonel Drake was also interested. Hert; then
stood a tall, dense forest of large trees, among which the small
growth of underbrush and saplings were so dense as to obsrruet
the passage of man or beast, i After two or three days of toil
in looking for a location for" the county seat, the commis-
sioners stopped on the rise of ground where the court-house
now stands, though this particular spot was then surrounded
by willow ponds, and outside of these ponds the trees were
a hundred feet in height. Here the commissioners were
reposing. Meantime quite a crowd of unkempt Hoosiers had
assembled to see the comraissoners and find the location of the
new county seat in the deep, wild woods. The Commissioner*
had made their decision that here was the county scat; they
drove a large stake wliere the court-house now stands. That
stake was all that was then done in the construction of the
city of Lebanon. Then there was noL a human being resident
in Lebanon — no, not even an Indian wigwam nor a log hut.
It was in its native glory; but the name — it was yet without
a Dame. The commissioners had failed as yet to give it a
name ; they could not agree. Mr. A. M. French, the youngest
of the commissioners, lay near by, quietly sleeping, uncon-
cerned what the name might be. 'He was aroused and told that
tiie others, having failed in agreeing on a name for the county
seat of the State of Boone, had deferred the name solely to
him. He gazed up at the tall trees around him, and the
thought of the tall cedars of Lebanon in sacred history — he
thought of the river Jordan — here were the tall trees, a little



Online LibrarySamuel HardenEarly life and times in Boone County, Indiana, giving an account of the early settlement of each locality, church histories, county and township officers from the first down to 1886 ... Biographical sketches of some of the prominent men and women ... → online text (page 3 of 38)