Emanuel Swedenborg.

History of Tioga County, Pennsylvania online

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Tioga county, about 1826, and spent the remaining years of his life in this county.
He had a family of nine children, as follows: Sanford, James an,d Hiram, both de-
ceased; Sylvia, wife of W. A. Eockwell; William, Moses and Seely, all of whom are
dead; John B., a resident of Missouri, and Charles, who lives in Mansfield, Tioga
county. Hiram Johns married Theresa Morehouse, a daughter of T. W. and A. M.
Morehouse, of Jersey City, !N"ew Jersey, to which union was born one son, Thomas
W. During the war period, Mr. Johns was superintendent of schools of Tioga
county. He later removed to Lamed, Kansas, where he practiced law until his
death.

Thomas W. Johns was bom in Williamsport, Lycoming county, Pennsylvania,
June 27, 1869, and is the only child of Hiram Johns. He obtained a good com-
mon school education, and afterwards attended Alfred University. He then went
to Lamed, Kansas, where he studied law with his father, and was admitted to the
bar in April, 1893. For a short time he practiced at Hutchison, Kansas, and returned
to Williamsport, Pennsylvania, in July, 1893. In April, 1894, he removed to Eut-
land township, Tioga county, and has since resided on a farm. Mr. Johns is a
strong Eepublican, and a man of enterprise and public spirit. He makes the
growing of poultry and fruit a specialty, and devotes his attention to agricultural
pursuits.

Collins W. Sopee was a native of Bradford county, Pennsylvania, where his
parents were among the early settlers. His mother, during a trip to Elmira on
horseback, was pursued and driven into a deserted house by a pack of wolves, and
kept there all one bitter cold night. Soon after daybreak the following morning
help arrived and she was enabled to proceed on her journey, not much the worse
of her adventure, except for being nearly frozen. This incident illustrates the
trials and hardships of pioneer life. When quite young, Collins W. attended school
at Southport, New York, intending to enter a profession, but before he had com-
pleted his studies he was called home by his father to take charge of the farm.
Mr. Soper possessed a natural' tact for acquiring and saving, was very successful,
and divided among his sons over 500 acres of land. He married Didamia Harris,
a native of Vermont, and reared five sons, viz: Elwyn, Walter, Ward B., Llewellyn
and Morton. Mr. Soper was a stanch Democrat, filled several township offices at
different periods, and served one term as county commissioner of Bradford coimty.
He died December 33, 1893, aged seventy-six years. His wife survivd him until
September 35, 1895.

Waed B. Sopee was bom in Bradford county, Pennsylvania, about 100 rods
east of where he now lives, April 16, 1852, and is the third son of Collins W. Soper..
He attended the district schools in boyhood, and later engaged in farming, working at
the mason's and painter's trades at intervals. On December 1, 1880, he married
Isadore Sharpe, a daughter of Lewis Sharpe, of Orange county. New York, and has
two adopted children, Laura May and Clara Belle, daughters of John B. Clark.



BIOGEAPHICAL SKETCHES. 1107



Mr. Soper and wife attend the Baptist church of Roseville, and, like his father,
he is an ardent Democrat. He has never held an office or belonged to any secret or-
ganization, and is one of the progressive farmers of the township.



CHAPTER LXY.

BIOGEAPHICAL SKETCHES.

Covington Tov^nship and Borough— The Blossbueg Coal Region— Liberty
AND Union Tovtnships— Morris Tov^nship.



Aaron Bloss, the foimder of Blossburg, was a native of Killingby, Connec-
ticut, born May 29, 1775. His father, Samuel Bloss, was a great-grandson of Ed-
ward Bloss, who came from England to America about 1630. Aaron came from Che-
nango coimty. New York, to Tioga county, Pennsylvania, in July, 1801, and was one
of the first settlers of Covington township. Thef oUowing year he removed to "Peter's
Camp," a station on the Williamson road, now the site of Blossburg, where he erected
a house in which he conducted a hotel until 1830. In that year he built a larger
hotel and continued the business up to 1835, when he returned to Covington, and
died March 24, 1843. Mr. Bloss married Ruah Lownsbery, to whom were born
nine children. Four of these grew to maturity, as follows: Everett W., Lloyd,
Eliza and Caroline. Mrs. Bloss died April 17, 1839, aged sixty-seven years. Mr.
Bloss was a man of strong common sense, great determination and courage, an expert
woodsman and hunter, patient, shrewd and far-seeing. Such was the pioneer
of Covington and Blossburg, the first man to settle in the unbroken wilderness
then covering this section of the county.

Everett Winter Bloss was born in Whitestown, Oneida county. New York,
September 20, 1800, eldest son of Aaron Bloss. He was reared at Blossburg, Tioga
county, and in youth became an expert hunter. In early manhood he spent some
time at the carpenter's trade, and also worked at shoemaking. In 1839 he removed
from Blossburg to a farm on the river, a short distance above Covington, and five
years later located on the present Bloss farm, where he purchased 120 acres of
forest land, upon which he passed the remaining years of his life, engaged in clearing
and improving the property. He died September 29, 1882, aged eighty-two years,
at the home of J. D. Burr, in Blossburg. He married Lydia Walker, a daughter
of Isaac Walker, who bore him five children, as follows: Julia E., wife of Joseph
Husted, of Covington township; Josephine M., deceased wife of William Singer-
land; Randolph P., who died on the old homestead; Warren W., deceased, and
Clara A., wife of John Everett, of Covington. Mrs. Bloss was born in New Hamp-
shire, May 27, 1807, and died in Covington, at the home of her daughter, Mrs. Clara
A. Everett, September 16, 1887.



1108 HISTOEY OF TIOGA COUNTY.



Eandoiph F. Bloss, eldest son of Everett Winter Bloss, and grandson of Aaron
Bloss, was born in Blossburg, Tioga comity, September 6, 1830, and was nine years
old when his parents removed to Covington township. In 1855 he married Mary
Peritor, a native of Ireland, who bore him two children, viz: Edie E., born August
8, 1861, who married J. D. Burr, of Blossburg, and died August 14, 1895, and Myrtle
E., born April 5, 1867, who from early womanhood was a great sufferer from spinal
disease, and died February 1, 1895. Both were earnest Christian women. Mr.
Bloss was a member of the Methodist Episcopal church, and in politics, a Eepublican.
He died on the homestead in Covington township, October 3, 1896, aged sixty-six
years.

Datid Clemons is acknowledged to have opened the first coal mine on Bear
creek, at Blossburg, early in the present century, hauling an occasional load of coal
overland to Painted Post. He was bom on the banks of Lake Champlain, in Ver-
mont, a son of Thomas demons, and received a good education. In eaxly life he
followed school teaching, and married a Miss Mallory, who died in Vermont in
1803, leaving three children, Camelia, Colbum and Alanson. In 1806 he came to
Tioga county, Pennsylvania, and settled about three miles above the site of Cov-
ington borough, on the farm now owned by W. J. Eichards. Soon after locating
here he married Euth Eeynolds, also a native of Vermont, who became the mother
of five children, viz: "William, deceased; Susan, who lives with her sister, Mrs.
Ames, in Covington township; Cuyler, deceased; Eoxanna, widow of Horatio W.
Ames, and James, a retired farmer of Covington township. Besides operating ia
coal to some extent, Mr. demons also cleared and improved a small farm, upon
which he resided until his death, in 1833.

Alanson Clbmons, youngest child of David demons' first marriage, was bom
in Vermont, April 3, 1803, and was but three years old when his father located in
the forest then covering Covington township. He remained with his father until
twenty-three years of age, when he bought a farm west of the river, on the present
Copp Hollow road, where he cleared and improved some 200 acres, being one of the
successful farmers of the community. He married Luthania, a daughter of John
Copp, who became the mother of ten children, as follows: Sally A., widow of An-
drew J. Clark, of Iforth Dakota; Lucy, deceased wife of G. M. Butler, of Covington
township; Thomas, a resident of Blossburg; Holland, George and David, all farmers
in Covington township; Orrin, who died in infancy; Laumon, a contractor of Bloss-
burg, and Nelson N. and William S., farmers of Covington township. Mr. Clemens
and wife were earnest workers in the Christian church. He died February 3,
1867, and his wife, October 17, 1880.

Holland Clemons, second son of Alanson demons, and grandson of David
demons, the pioneer, was born in Covington township, Tioga county, August 10,
1834, and is one of the prominent and successful farmers of his native township.
He remained on the homestead farm until twenty-one years of age, and then bought
fifty-six acres of his present place, to which he has since added, until he is now the
owner of 132 acres of well-improved land. On April 17, 1858, he married Martha
Walker, a daughter of Lewis Walker. She was bom in the Frost settlement, June
27, 1830, and is the mother of two children, viz: Frank L., bom February 14, 1862,
who died March 29, 1891, leaving a widow, Mrs. Ida (Ely) Clemons; and Mary I.,



BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCHES. 1109



wife of W. H. Olney, of Mansfieldj who has three children, Charles H., Frank L.
and Dee H. Frank L. demons was educated at WeUsboro, graduating in the class
of 1881, and was soon after appointed deputy sheriff. He served in that ofBce eight
months, after which he taught two terms in the home school, and then became
principal of the Covington graded school. He subsequently became book-keeper
and paymaster of the Cedar Eun Tanning Company, at Leetonia, and two years
later store manager. He had been promised the appointment of superintendent
of the Leetonia plant, but death cut short his promising career. Mrs. Holland
demons is a member of the Church of Christ. In politics, Mr. demons is a Ke-
publican, has filled the offices of treasurer, school director, assessor and supervisor
in Covington township, and is also a member of the Grange.

Isaac Walker, a native of Shirley, Massachusetts, was bom March 18, 1767^
a son of Samuel and Mary (Stratton) Walker. His father was bom in Massachusetts,
August 30, 1721, and was a son of Seth and Eleanor (Chandler) Walker, a grand-
son of Joseph and Sarah (Wyman) Walker, and great-grandson of Samuel Walker,
who came from England to America in 1630, with his father, Capt. Eichard Walker,
also a native of England, and the founder of this branch of the Walker family in
America. Isaac was reared in his native place, and married Polly Porter, of Charles-
ton, New Hampshire. They located at Langdon, New Hampshire, where eleven
children were bom to them, as follows: Eoyal, Isaac, Polly, Asahel, Stratton,
Luther, Lewis, Eoswell, Lydia, James and Cynthia. Of these Isaac, Asahel, Eoswell
and Cynthia removed from Covington to Illinois. In 1813 Isaac Walker and family
came to Tioga county, Pennsylvania, and located on what is now the Charles How-
land farm, in Covington borough. Here he passed the remaining years of his life>
dying July 25, 1839. His wife died March 24, 1847, at the ripe age of seventy-
eight years. They were among the first settlers of Covington, and their descendants
are among the leading and respected people of the community which they helped to
found.

EoTAL Walker, eldest son of Isaac Walker, was born at Langdon, New Hamp-
shire, January 14, 1796, and was seventeen years old when the family came to Tioga
county. He married Eachel Johnson, of Bradford county, and resided on the farm
settled by his father during the remainder of his life. To Eoyal and Eachel Walker
were bom eight children, all of whom are dead, viz: Samuel S., for forty-six years
an engineer on the Erie railroad; Eliza, deceased wife of Charles Howland, of
Covington; William, who died in Australia; James P., a conductor on the Erie
railroad for many years; Henry E., a fireman on the same road, who was killed in
a wreck; Elmina, Elvina and Zilphia. Mr. Walker died at Covington October 16,
1875, in which place his wife had died August 30, 1842.

Stratton Walker, fifth child of Isaac Walker, was bom in Langdon, New
Hampshire, July 14, 1801, and came with his parents to Tioga county in boyhood;
He was reared in Covington, and subsequently purchased a tract of timber land
adjoining the farm of his brother, Lewis, with whom he made his home while
clearing and improving his property. He was a sufferer from curvature of the
spine, and consequently never married. He spent his later life with his nephew,
Lewis E. Walker, to whom he had rented his farm, and died Febrtrary 14, 1880, in
his seventy-ninth year.



1110 HISTOET OF TIOGA C0T7NTT.

Lewis Walkee, seventh child of Isaac Walker, was horn at Langdon, New
Hampshire, December 15, 1803, came with his parents to Tioga county, and re-
mained working on the home farm until he was twenty-three years old. He then
bought 100 acres of timber land two miles east of CoTington borough, and building
thereon a rude cabin, he took up his residence on his purchase and began the work
of clearing and improviag it. Mr. Walker became a well-known and successful
farmer, a good business man and a highly respected citizen. December 14, 1826, he
married Isabel Butler, of Vermont, who shared with him the trials and hardships of
pioneer life. They became the parents of ten children, named as follows: Elizabeth,
deceased wife of Charles Jaquish; Emmeline, deceased wife of J. G. Noble; Martha,
wife of Holland demons, of Covington township; Olive, wife of Charles Marvin,
of Bradford county; Lewis E., of Covington township; Ellis, who died at the age of
two years; Isaac D., who died at NashviUe, Tennessee, July 37, 1864, while a
soldier in the Union army; Mary J., wife of Benajah Wilcox, of Coming, New
York; James, who died in Andersonville Prison during the Eebellion, and Milton
R., who lives on a part of the old homestead. In politics, Mr. Walker was a Demo-
crat, and in religion, both he and wife were members of the Christian church. He
died June 17, 1870, and his wife, December 23, 1876.

Lewis Eandall Walkee, oldest son of Lewis and Isabel (Butler) Walker,
was bom on the homestead farm in Covington township, Tioga county, December
1, 1834. He received a common school education, and remained with his parents
until 1861, when he began for himself on a rented farm. In the autumn of 1862 he
located on his present farm, then owned by his uncle, Stratton Walker, where he
has since been engaged in general farming. On December 26, 1860, Mr. Walker
married Arvilla Wilcox, a daughter of John H. Wilcox. She was bom in Delmar
township, May 28, 1842, and became the mother of nine children, as follows: Henry
E., a tinsmith, residing in Coming; James A., a hardware merchant of WoodhuU,
New York; Isaac D., a farmer of (ribson, New York; O'ra J., a farmer of the same
place; Eva A., wife of Ealph VanKeuren, of Gibson; Lewis S., who died in child-
hood; Earl S., a teacher in New York state; Martha A., who is employed in the
State Normal School, at Mansfield, and Alfred G., who lives in Gibson. Mrs.
Walker was an active member of the Christian church. She died March 14, 1882.
Mr. Walker was again married February 24, 1883, to Louisa Miller, a daughter of
Isaac Miller, of Potter county, who bore him four children, viz: Porter N., Mary
E., Jessie Q. and Eandall C. Mrs. Walker died on August 21, 1894. She was a
consistent member of the First Baptist church of Covington. For twenty years Mr.
Walker was a member of the I. 0. 0. P. Politically, he is a Eepublican, and has
held most of the township offices at different periods.

Milton E. Walkee, youngest child of Lewis and Isabel Walker, was bom
on his present farm in Covington township, June 14, 1846, and has spent his entire
life upon the homestead, which contains seventy-four acres and is well-improved.
May 4, 1872, he married Hannah M. Wilcox, a daughter of Benajah Wilcox. She was
bom August 30, 1850, and is the mother of five children, as follows: Cora M.,
William J., Lewis, Isabel and Hannah M. Mrs. Walker is a member of the Christian
church. In politics, he is a Democrat, and has served three years as school director
and one year as treasurer of the school board.



BIOGEAPHICAL SKETCHES. HH



James Walkee, youngest son of Isaac Walker, was bom at Langdon, New
Hampshire, April 33, 1809, and was only four years old when the family settled in
Covington township, where he attended school in the pioneer log building of that
locality. After attaining manhood he purchased a small farm, and also worked
in a sash and blind factory at Covington for a few years. He later took up the car-
penter's trade, and subsequently sold his property in Covington and bought a
farm in the eastern part of Covington township, which he afterwards disposed
of and moved to Blossburg, where lie was employed for about twenty years as
foreman of the carpenter department in the shops of the Tioga Eailroad Company.
In 1884 he retired from active labor, and resided with his son, Delos H., up to his
death, July 18, 1887. Mr. Walker married Eliza Hazleton, a daughter of Dr. John
Hazleton, of Townsend, Vermont, who bore him three children, viz: Delos H.,
of Covington township; Roswell A., who died at Belle Plains, Virginia, December
9, 1863, while a soldier in Company C, One Hundred and Thirty-second Pennsyl-
vania Volunteers, and Mary A., wife of Alfred T. James, of Philipsburg, Pennsyl-
vania. Mrs. Walker died at the home of her son, Delos H., January 35, 1885.

Delos Hazleton Walkee, oldest child and only living son of James and
Eliza Walker, was bom in Covington, Tioga county, November 35, 1835. He'
obtained a good common school education, commenced teaching when nineteen
years of age, and taught seven winter terms. When twenty-one years old he
rented a farm in Covington township, on which he resided up to 1863, and then
went to Morris Eun, where he was employed for ten years by the Morris Run Coal
Company, first as weighmaster, and later as book-keeper. In the autumn of 1873
he moved to Wellsboro, and in December following he was appointed deputy
sheriff, by Sheriff Bowen. In the fall of 1876 he was elected sheriff, on the Re-
publican ticket, with which party he has always affiliated, and served a full term.
In the spring of 1880 he removed to a farm in Covington township, three miles
southwest of Covington, which he had purchased during his residence in Morris
Eun. It contains 130 acres of well-improved land, and he also owns 180 acres of
timber land in the same township. He has since devoted his principal attention to
general farming, and is one of the leading agriculturalists of this section of the
county. Mr. Walker was married June 9, 1860, to Julia A. Frost, a daughter of
Lyman Frost, who came from Tioga county. New York, at an early day and located
in Covington township, the locality being now known as the "Frost Settlement,"
where he engaged in the lumber business. Mr. Frost married Hannah TJfford, who
bore him eleven children, ten of whom grew to maturity, viz: Asal V., of Wis-
consin; Ruel, of Nevada; Nathaniel, who lives in Minnesota; Keziah, wife of
M. C. Seely, of Washington; Nancy, wife of Horman Allen, of Missouri; Julia
A., wife of D. H. Walker; Sarah, wife of A. M. Whittaker, of Kansas; Maa7, de-
ceased wife of Arthur Goodspeed, of Mansfield; Jane, wife of S. D. Cudworth, of
Missouri, and Lyman, a resident of the same State. Mrs. Frost died in Mirabile,
Missouri, April 33, 1885, and her husband, in the same place, August 7, 1896, at
the ripe age of ninety-one years. Mrs. Walker was bom June 38, 1839, and is
the mother of five children, viz: Maud Lillian, and Bertie Roswell, both of whom
died in infancy; Houston Frost, principal of the Blossburg schools; Bertha May,
wife of Oliver F. Kelley, of Coming, and Lyman James. Mr. and Mrs. Walker are



1112 HISTOBY OF TIOGA COUNTY.

members of the First Baptist church of Covington. He has always taken a promi-
nent part in public affairs, has fiUed the offices of school director, auditor and town-
ship clerk, and is a member of the K. of H.

Samuel Pbost, a native of Massachusetts, bom April 7, 1781, was a successful
farmer and lumberman. He married Keziah Edson, and reared a family of eleven
children, viz: Lucy, Hiram, Lyman, Julia, Calvin, Ashbel, Samuel, Betsey, James,
Stilhnan and EHas, the last three of whom were bom in Tioga county, New York.
Of this family, Lyman, Calvin, Samuel, James and Elias, all located at or near what
is now known as the "Frost Settlement" and have left numerous descendants in
this section of the county.

Elias Fkost, youngest son of Samuel Frost, was bom in Tioga county. New
York, February 19, 1833. When he was sixteen years old he went to work on his
own account, and after arriving at manhood bought a farm in the Frost settlement.
Nine years later he sold this property and in the fall of 1856 purchased 133 acres in
Kichmond township, where he has since resided. In 1847 he married Elizabeth
Bryant, a daughter of David Bryant, of Eichmond township, who bore him six
children, as follows: Adaline, deceased; Harvey, a resident of Eichmond township;
"Samuel S., of Covington township; Ameda, deceased; Adeloa, wife of Burt Mudge,
o'f Covington, and Arthur, a farmer of the same township.

Samuel S. Fkost, a son of Elias Frost, and grandson of Samuel Frost, was bora
in the Frost settlement, Tioga county, July 38, 1850, and attended the common
schools in boyhood. When nineteen years of age he began working out as a farm
hand, which he continued up to his twenty-fourth year, when he and his brother,
Harvey, bought a farm. A year later he sold his interest in this property, and
in April, 1874, purchased fifty acres of his present farm. In October, 1883, he
bought an additional sixty acres, and in April, 1888, fifty acres more, and now
owns a well-improved property of 160 acres. Mr. Frost was married March 30,
1873, to Dorcas M. Kiley, a daughter of John Kiley. She was born on December
30, 1853, and is the mother of four children, viz: Walter E., Stella M., John S. and
Earl J. Mrs. Frost is a member of the Methodist Episcopal church. In politics,
a stanch Eepublican, Mr. Frost has filled the office of school director for the past
five years and was treasurer of the school board for three years. He is one of the
enterprising farmers of his native township.

Ephbaim B. GrEBOULD was bom in Newtown, Connecticut, January 14, 1788,
a son of Jabez and Demaris (Bennett) Gerould. His father was born in Wrentham,
Massachusetts, November 1, 1748, and was a son of Gamaliel and Eebecca (Law-
rence) Gerould, and a grandson of Dr. Jacques Gerould, a silk manufacturer of
France, who came to America in 1685 and finally located in Medfield, Massachusetts.
Jabez Gerould was a soldier in the Eevolution, and subsequently followed black-
smithing in Newtown, Connecticut, whence he removed to Franklin, New York, in
1798. In 1801 he located in East Smithfield, Bradford county, Pennsylvania,
where he died on June 13, 1803. His wife, Demaris, survived until March 30,
1839. Their children were Jerusha, James, Susanna, Ephraim B., George, Ziba,
Jabez L., Abel J. and Theodore. Ephraim B. was thirteen years old when the
family settled in Bradford county. There he grew to manhood and married Eliz-
abeth Foster, who bore him one son, Theodore Clark. She died on August 11;



BIOGEAPHICAL SKETCHES. 1113



1824, and soon afterwards Mr. Gerould came to Tioga county and bought a large
farm in Covington township. He subsequently married Christiana Putnam, a
daughter of Thomas Putnam, who became the mother of three children, viz: Henry
M., Otis G. and Maria E. Mr. Gerould was a prominent and successful man, and
was actively engaged in merchandising, lumbering and farming. He was also a
surveyor, and agent for the Bingham lands in this section of the county. He was
an earnest worker in the Baptist church, and in politics, a stanch Democrat. He
filled the oflBce of postmaster for a period, and was a brigade inspector in tlie militia.-
He died on April 22, 1845, and his wife, Christiana, October 23, 1871. She also was
an active and zealous worker in the Baptist church, and it was through her faith-
fully carrying out the plans of her husband, after his death, that the Baptist church
edifice was erected.

Otis Gibson Geeould, ex-treasurer of Tioga county, was bom in the borough
of Covington, Tioga county, December 17, 1830, and grew to manhood in his native



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