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History of Tioga County, Pennsylvania online

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brought to the attention of the borough council, and in 1837 that body appropriated
$35 for the purpose of inclosing it with a fence.

The necessity for a new burial place was admitted as early as 1840, but did not
manifest itself in any practical way until several years later. Many were reluctant to
abandon the old graveyard, while others were opposed to the removal therefrom
of the remains of their relatives. To them the place was, and would ever remain, a
sacred spot, hallowed by the tenderest memories.

There is no record to inform us whose remains were the first to be buried here,
but burials doubtless began soon after the laying out of the village. Many of the
graves are now unmarked, the gravestones erected by loving hands having fallen
into ruin years ago. Native stone was used to mark the earlier graves, and it was
more susceptible to the action of the elements than marble; but it is possible that van-
dalism had something to do with the overturning and breaking of not a few head-
stones, owing to the unfenced and unprotected character of the place.

A number of the undisturbed graves are marked by marble slabs. From a few of
these the inscriptions have been copied, as follows:

Col. Isaac Field, died Augnst 9, 1828, in the forty-seventli year of his ag'e.
David Henry, Jr., died July 6, 1850, aged sixty-seven years, eleven months and twenty-
two days.

James Henry, died September 30, 1849, aged sixty years and two days.
Rufus Butler, died December 6, 1847, aged seventy-four years and eleven months.
Isabel, his wife, died March 5, 1842, aged sixty-four years, five months and seven days.

Joseph Thompson, a Revolutionary patriot, died November 33, 1842, aged eighty-five
years, ten months and eighteen days.

Dertus Morsman, died August 30, 1847, aged forty-four years, seven months and four-
teen days.

Daniel Eitter, died June 15, 1843, aged forty-two years, eight months and two days.
David Hurley, died September 14, 1854, aged fifty-eight years, one month and six-
teen days.

Amos Coolidge, died May 16, 1851, aged sixty years, seven months and twelve days.
Jonathan Webster, Botanic Physician, died August 15, 1843, aged forty-three years,
eight months and eleven days. Milly, his wife, died April 8, 1848, aged forty-eight
years, seven months and nine days.

Israel Greenleaf, a Eevolutionary soldier, died June 1, 1847, aged eighty-two years.
Sarah, his wife, died March 8, 1840, aged seventy years.


It will be observed that two of these graves contain the remains of Eevolutionary
soldiers. Although each grave is marked by a modest marble slab, it is, nevertheless,
neglected and overgrown with brambles, a condition that ought to appeal to the
patriotism that exists, and has always existed in Wellsboro, and that, even at
this late day, should rescue these graves from the ruin and neglect of this old-time
burying ground. These heroes of the struggle that achieved our independence and
made our present greatness as a republic possible, deserve at least a modest monu-
ment to rescue their names from oblivion. The erection of such a monument and its
dedication on Independence Day would be a fitting tribute to their memory and
would serve to keep alive the spirit of patriotism, that rightly fostered, will not neg-
lect a little duty, any more than it will shrink from a great sacrifice.

The Wellsboro Cemetery was incorporated under authority of an act of assembly,
approved April 7, 1849, the original members being Benjamin B. Smith, E. G. White,
George McLeod, John W. Guernsey, John L. Kobinson, Josiah Emery, WilHam
Bache, James Lowrey and Levi I. Nichols. The incorporation was "authorized
to purchase a lot of land, not exceeding ten acres, and lay out and ornament the

It appears that for several years after the incorporation of this company nothiag
was done toward securing a new cemetery site. In the meantime some of the
iucorporators died and were buried in the old graveyard. On April 36, 1855, a
supplementary act was approved, substituting Chester Eobinson, William Bache,
George McLeod, Stephen F. Wilson, S. E. Ensworth, James I. Jackson, Joseph
EiberoUe, Levi I. Nichols and Peter Green for the original incorporators.

The new company acted promptly. About nine and one-half acres of land,
north of the borough limits, as they then existed, were purchased from Stephen F.
Wilson and Mrs. Timothy Coats. The location, which embraces a grove of pines,
is very beautiful, and had it not been set apart for a cemetery would have been a
model one for a park. This land was purchased in 1855, and the same year B. F.
Hathaway, of Flushing, Long Island, an experienced landscape gardner, was em-
ployed to survey and lay it out. This work he performed in a satisfactory manner,
laying off 439 burial lots, besides walks and drives. Later 109 lots were added from
ground remaining undivided. Over $12,000 were expended by the company in
the work of purchasing and preparing this beautiful cemetery for its silent tenants.
Two acres more were afterwards added, to be ready for future use. Mr. Hathaway
made an accurate map of the grounds, which was copied carefully and correctly by
James S. Bryden, who selected a lot for himself on a knoll or hillock. Soon after
finishing the copy of the map he was suddenly taken ill, and died March 16, 1856,
aged thirty-five years. He was buried in the lot he had selected and was the first
person to be interred in the new cemetery. His connection with the work of prepar-
ing the map, and his sudden illness and death, as well perhaps as a desire to witness
the first burial in the new grounds, resulted in his funeral being very largely
attended, and the facts in connection with his death being made a topic of talk
throughout the borough.

The natural beauty of this cemetery has been enhanced by the artistic taste
displayed in laying out its driveways and walks, as well as by the many sightly monu-
ments and tablets of marble and granite that mark the graves of the sleeping dead,
a number of whoifi were removed hither from the old graveyard on the hill.


There is one tomb within this cemetery that is at once noticeable and unique.
It was erected several years ago by Hon. Stephen F. Wilson, for the reception of
his remains after death. It is built of gray stone, in the form of a log cabin, and is
a faithful reproduction in its exterior appearance of the primitive home of the rugged
pioneers of the early day. In striking contrast with it is the uncut shaft of native
sandstone that, in its suggestiveness, typifies the character of that courageous minis-
ter of the gospel, Eev. J. F. Calkins. The bronze likeness of "Nessmuk" set in the
granite block that marks his grave, attracts the notice of the visitor and leads him
to ask whose memory it is intended to keep alive in the minds of the living. In
the northeast corner of the cemetery will be found the plain marble headstones that
mark the graves of Benjamin Wistar Morris and his wife, as well as those of Judge
Samuel "Wells Morris, his wife and a daughter. Their remains were among those
removed from the old graveyard adjoiniug the Academy. The monuments and
tablets erected during recent years are mostly granite, and are noticeable for their
massive and enduring character, as well as for an adherence to artistic and appro-
priate designs.

A competent man has charge of this cemetery and the graves are all well taken
care of the year round. During the summer months, when the trees are in full
foliage and the flowers are in bloom, it is a really beautiful place, and is daily visited
by those whose loved ones lie sleeping in its graves, as well as by strangers, who
wander among its many monuments and glean from their inscriptions the brief
history which they give of the "silent city's" tenants.

Calvary Cemetery is situated in the southern part of the borough limits, and
is the burial ground for St. Peter's Eoman Catholic Church. It contains eight
acres, purchased in April, 1883, from N"elson Dunham, for $500, and deeded to Eight
Eeverend Bishop O'Hara. It is neatly laid out in burial lots, drives and walks,
and contains a number of handsome marble and granite gravestones and monu-
ments. The location is elevated and overlooks the borough. This cemetery is
well taken care of, and will in time be a reaUy beautiful burial place.


Tyoga Lodge, No. 230, 1. 0. 0. F., was organized February 15, 1847, with the
following officers: Eobert C. Simpson, E". G.; William Garretson, V. G.; James
P. Magill, S.; James S. Bryden, A. S., and James D. Booth, T. The lodge main-
tained its existence for about ten years and then went down. In the spring of 1871
a sufficient number of the old members petitioned the grand lodge for a return of
the charter. It was returned April 13, 1871, and the lodge reorganized, with the
following officers: Andrew Foley, K. G.; H. W. Dartt, V. G.; If. T. Chandler, S.,
and Joseph EiberoUe, T. The lodge now numbers 190 members.

Wellsboro Encampment, No. 78, 1. 0. 0. F., was instituted April 10, 1848, with
the following officers: John S. Williston, C. P.; James S. Bryden, H. P.; John F.
Donaldson, S. W.; Edward W. Eoss, J. W.; Simon H. Landis, S.; Joseph Weaver,
T.; L. B. Eeynolds, G. The encampment surrendered its charter about 1856 or
1857, and was re-instituted under the same charter March 37, 1873, the grand
encampment officers of the State being present. The officers installed were: A.
Foley, C. P.; Eobert C. Simpson, H. P.; E. J. Brown, S. W.; E". T. Chandler, J. W.;


Hiram W. Dartt, S.; Joseph EiberoUe, T.; George 0. Derby, G. The present mem-
hership is sixty-seven.

Canton Keystone, No. 6, Patriarchs Militant, I. 0. 0. F., mustered March 13,
1886. The first officers were as follows: E. C. Deans, C; Frank A. Deans, L.;
Charles A. Sweet, E.; B. F. Milliken, C; A. C. Eowland, A. There are now about
forty members. This and the two preceding societies meet in the Odd Fellows'
hall in the Jacobson block.

Ossea Lodge, No. S17, F. & A. M., was constituted January 11, 1858, with the
following officers: Ebenezer Pratt, W. M.; William A. Eoe, S. W.; William Eoberts,
J. W.; James Kimball, T.; Thomas B. Bryden, S.; Eobert Eoy, S. D.; Angus
Griffiin, J. D., and Hubbard Carpenter, T. The lodge now numbers 115 members.
For a number of years previous to May, 1894, the lodge met in the Masonic hall in
the Williams block. With the beginning of 1894, the lodge secured a lease of Annan-
dale hall, previously used as an opera house, in the Simpson block. This was
remodeled for the use of the lodge, the chapter and the commandery, the main
auditorium being set apart as a hall, with ante rooms and club rooms at the rear. The
gallery was inclosed and transformed into a dining-room. The lodge hall is two
stories from floor to ceiling, the latter being studded with forty-eight thirty-two
candle power electric lights. A rich velvet carpet covers the floor. The furniture
is antique oak of massive Gothic design, the officers' chairs and the settees occu-
pied by the members being upholstered in leather. This hall, now known as the
Masonic Temple, is regarded as one of the largest and most finely furnished in the
State, and those who enjoy the privilege of meeting in it are justly proud of its
reputation as a model Masonic hall.

Tyoga Chapter, No. IH, R. A. M., was constituted August 15, 1859. The fol-
lowing were the first officers: Eobert C. Simpson, H. P.; William Butler, K.; A. W.
Howland, S.; William Eoberts, T.; Thomas B. Bryden, S., and Hubbard Carpenter,
T. The chapter now numbers fifty-five members.

TyagagUon Commandery, No. 28, E. T., was constituted June 12, 1867, with
the following officers: Eobert C. Simpson, E. C; William Eoberts, G.; Andrew
Foley, C. G.; M. H. Cobb, P.; Eobert Eoy, T., and Thomas B. Bryden, S. The
present membership is sixty-five.

George Cook Post, No. 315, G. A. E., was first organized February 6, 1873, as
Cook Post, ISTo. 334, with the following officers and members: Alanson E. Mies,
C; E. Jeffers, S. V. C; George 0. Derby, J. V. C; Daniel Bacon, S.; Eev. D. D.
Buck, C; George W. Merrick, 0. D.; E. J. Henry, 0. G.; H. D. Deming, A.;
Lucius Truman, Q. M.; George W. Sears, Q. M. S.; E. C. Bailey, S. M., and WiUiam
S. Hoagland, Eobert C. Cox, Benjamin Seeley, J. A. Hill, James M. Wilkinson, W. W.
Webb and E. Whitney. Lack of sufficient numbers caused the post to lapse for a
time. In March, 1883, it was re-organized as Cook Post, Ko. 315, with the fol-
lowing officers: John A. Fletcher, C; Jonathaji V. Morgan, S. V. C; Edwin B.
Carvey, J. V. C; David H. Belcher, Q. M.; Daniel Bacon, S.; J. W. Brewster, C;
A. E. ISTiles, 0. D.; Joseph 0. English, 0. G.; John H. Buckley, A.; Sylvester
Houghton, Q. M. S., and Samuel D. Evans, S. M. The post now numbers about
125 members. In 1884 the post purchased the old Baptist church building and a
lot on the east side of Main street, north of the public square. The building was
fitted up for the use of the post, the whole investment being about $1,500. It is


also the meeting place of the Union Veteran Legion, and the Woman's Belief Corps.
Sometime after the re-organization, by amendment to the charter, the name was
changed to George Cook Post.

George Cook Corps, No. 88, W. R. G., was organized July 14, 1887, with seven-
teen members. The first officers were as follows: Mrs. Antoinette Horton, P.; Mrs.
Catherine Denmark, S. V. P.; Mrs. Albina Houghton, J. V. P.; Mrs. Belle M.
Allen, S.; Mrs. Mary M. Miller, T., and Mrs. Isabella E. Boyce, C. There are now
fifty-eight members. The corps meets in George Cook Post hall.

Tioga County Association of Ex-Union Prisoners of War was organized Peb-
ruary 36, 1886, with the following officers and members: Jonathan Y. Morgan, P.;
James 0. English, V. P.; D. H. Belcher, S.; L. Trumau, T., and Peter D. Wal-
bridge, Henry H. Smith, A. B. Horton, John J. Johnson, S. D. Moore and J. D.
Strait. There are now thirty-one members. Owing to its members being scat-
tered over the county no stated meetings are held, the members coming together,
upon the call of the president, Jonathan V. Morgan, who has held that office since
the organization.

Encampment No. 105, Union Veteran Legion, was organized May 2, 1893, with
the following officers and members: George A. Ludlow, Col.; Thomas J. Davies,
Lt. Col.; J. H. Buckley, Chap.; J. J. Eogers, Maj.; J. V. Morgan, 0. D.; W. W.
English, Q. M., and E. E. Allen, E. T. Kelley, J. C. Kriner, Alexander Leslie, D. H.
Hotchkiss, J. H. Eobbins, H. T. Graves, Bernhartt Metzgar, D. E. Bowen, David
Hart, Ephraim JefEers, John Fletcher, and Vihemus Culver. The following have
served as colonels of the encampment: George A. Ludlow, 1893-93; Ephraim
Jeffers, 1894; Koah Wheeler, 1895; J. C. Herrington, 1896, and Jonathan V.
Morgan, 1897. There are now sixty-eight members. The encampment meets in
George Cook Post hall.

Wellsloro Lodge, No. 949, K. of H., was organized March 17, 1879, with twenty
members. It meets in the Converse & Williams block and now has twenty-five

Wellsioro Lodge, No. 72, 1. 0. G. T., was organized April 9, 1887, with twenty
members. The first officers were as follows: H. D. Gifford, W. C. T.; Mrs. F. A.
Johnson, W. V. T.; C. W. Sears, W. C; Prank Watkins, W. S.; Mrs. C. H. Strait,
W. A. S.; William G. Shaw, W. P. S.; E. A. Johnson, W. T.; James Vandusen,
W. M.; Mrs. H. G. Ireland, W. I. G.; G. W. Merrick, P. W. C. T. This lodge now
numbers about sixty-eight members in good standing.

Wellsioro Tent, No. 152, K. 0. T. M., held its first review February 34, 1893,
when twenty-one persons became charter members. A charter was secured April
15, 1893. The first officers were: A. A. Schand, P. C; D. W. Navle, C; George
A. Weller, L. C; S. L. Blair, E. K.; Charles E. Grinnell, P. K.; N". W. Mastin,
Phy.; James Cummings, S.; Walter Brooks, M. at A.; S. L. Baker, M. F. of G.;
D. C. Hughes, S. M. of G.; W. D. Furman, S.; D. J. Jackson, P. The tent is in a
flourishing condition at the present time, and the membership exceeds sixty.

Wellsioro Hive, No. 45, L.O.T. M., was organized March 39, 1894, with twenty-
eight charter members. The first officers elected were as follows: Mrs. A. B. East-
man, L. P. C; Mrs. A. A. Schand, P. C; Mrs. 0. L. Butts, L. C; Mrs. Belle M.
Allen, E. C; Miss Minnie E. Burgin, P. C; Mrs. Frank Baldwin, C; Mrs. C. C.


Kirtland, S.; Miss Anna Abemathy, L. M. at A.; Mrs. Eobert Loyd, S.; Mrs. G. A.
Weller, P. The hive now numbers thirty-three members.

Division No. 5, A. 0. H., was organized April 32, 1894, with fifteen members.
Its first officers were as follows: M. P. Moran, P.; W. B. Sullivan, V. P.; H. L.
Kerwin, S.; M. J. McMahon, F. S., and E. J. Eogers, T. Its meetings are held in the
K. of H. hall. The county organization of this order numbers about 300 members.

wellsboeough's militaet band.

The first "Brass Band" in the county was the "Charleston Band," organized
about 1850. Its leader was the late Col. Alanson E. Mies, the other members
being as follows: Nathan and Nelson Austin, Sylvester Kelley, Lewis, Job and
Almon "Wetmore, Henry Dockstadter and Henry Dartt, all residents of Charleston
township. This band maintained its organization for four or five years and fre-
quently made its appearance in Wellsboro, being called upon to furnish music for
public celebrations and festal occasions. Then came the Wetmore Band, composed
of Louis, Job, Almon and Philip Wetmore. This was, however, a string band,
organized mainly for the purpose of furnishing music for dances and other social
merry-makings. When the Civil War came Job and Almon enlisted in Company
H, Sixth Eeserves, and were soon assigned to the First Brigade Band, Pennsylvania
Eeserves. Philip, who enlisted soon afterwards, did duty as a member of the
Forty-fifth Eegimental Band, and later as a bugler in the One Hundred and Eighty-
seventh Pennsylvania Volunteers. After the close of the war this band was re-
organized and continued in existence until 1880.

In 1870 a small brass band was organized in Wellsboro. Among its members
were Arthur M. Eoy, Frank A. Deans, and Job, Lewis and Almon Wetmore. It
lasted two years. During the intervening years it has had a number of successors,
the most notable being the Fire Department Band, organized in 1881; the Apollo
Band, organized in 1883, and incorporated; the Academic Literary Society Band,
and the Wellsboro Band, organized in 1896, and recently re-named Wellsborough's
Military Band. From 1878 to 1880 Prof. Fred Hager, of Elmira, New York, was
employed as instructor of the band then existing and brought it up to a high
standard of excellence. In the meantime the Fisehler brothers, all excellent
musicians, had organized an orchestra. From these various bands have gone
forth a number of noted players on wind and string instruments, prominent among
whom is John D. VanOsten, the celebrated trombone player.

The band as now organized consists of thirty pieces. The instruments are
the finest obtainable, and the individual members are all excellent musicians.
Frank A. Deans, the leader, has been identified, as member and leader, with the
various Wellsboro bands, since 1870. He has all the qualifications for successful
leadership and has brought the band up to a high standard of excellence, until it
ranks among the best bands in the State. The people of Wellsboro take a Just
pride in it and accord it a generous support.



The Tioga Pioneer— Its Editors and Publishers— Removal to Tioga— Early
Advertisements— The Phoenix Appears— The Tioga Herald— George Hil-
dreth, the Old-Time Printer— The Wellsboro Advertiser— The Wells-
BORO Agitator— The Daily Record— The Tioga Eagle and its Successors
—The Wellsboro Gazette— The Tioga Banner— The Hermaic Journal—
The Tioga County Leader— The Republican Advocate— A Noted Corre-

THE first newspaper published in Tioga county made its appearance in Wellsboro,
December 3, 1825. It was named The Tioga Pioneer, and its publishers were
Eankin Lewis & Company. Eankin Lewis, whose name appears as "printer" in
the assessment list of 1826, was in charge of the mechanical department. His
uncle, Ellis Lewis, the other member of the partnership, and the editor, was a young
attorney who had just located in Wellsboro. He was also a practical printer and
had for a short time, while living in Williamsport, been connected with the Lycoming
Gazette. The plant of the Tioga Pioneer consisted of a Eamage press — there were
no others in those days — which had been secured at Sunbury and transported over
the State road from Williamsport, together with a small quantity of type and other
requisite material. The paper itself, which, considering the primitive condition
of the town and county, was appropriately named, was a folio sheet, with four
columns to the page, and bore this expressive motto under its name: "Knowledge
is power — is wealth — ^is happiness." That it created a sensation among the few
inhabitants of the town is not doubted, and they hailed its appearance as a harbinger
of better times. Judge Morris, John Norris and other leading men of the village
gave the enterprising young publishers their support and encouragement. They
now felt that they were on a par with Williamsport, although the Lycoming Gazette
had been founded in 1801, twenty-four years before.

That the Tioga Pioneer encountered many difficulties and discouragements
at first, and was irregular in making its appearance, there is no doubt.' Such was
the fate of all enterprises of this kind started on the verge of civilization. The
terms of the paper were $1.50 in advance; $2 at the end of six months, and $3 if
not paid until the end of the year.

The connection of Ellis Lewis with the Tioga Pioneer appears to have lasted
about two years. Early in 1827 the plant was removed to Tioga and the publication
continued there under the old name and firm, with William Garretson as editor, until
1828, when it was purchased by Eev. Elisha Booth and its name changed to the
Northern Banner. The removal to Tioga was brought about by Dr. William Willard
and his friends, who were also ambitious of having the county seat removed to their
town. After the removal of the paper to Tioga and its purchase by Eev. Elisha
Booth, William Garretson became the editor.


During the two years the paper was in Wellsboro, Ellis Lewis was deep in the
law, and had little or no time to devote to newspaper work. It will be seen by
reference to his biographical sketch that he was politically ambitious; that he was
living in Towanda in 1828 and in 1833 had become a member of the legislature,
attorney general of the State in 1833, and before the year was out he was appointed
a president judge. He was then only about thirty-five years of age. The time and
effort he devoted to founding and editing a newspaper may have been the stepping
stone to his political and judicial preferment. He gave aid and comfort to Governor
Wolf, who showed his gratitude by rewarding him.

Copies of this old paper are very scarce. A copy before us, No. 7, of Vol. H,
is dated "Wellsboro, Saturday, January 13, 1827, from which, figuring back, it appears
that the first number of Vol. 1 must have been issued December 3, 1835. Another
copy (No. 34, of Vol. II), is dated Saturday, May 19, 1837. Both of these copies
may be found among the collection of old papers owned by Arthur M. Eoy, one of
the editors and publishers of the Agitator.

The following advertisement, signed by Hobart B. Graves, and dated Willards-
burg, March 5, 1837, is taken from the issue of Saturday, August 18, 1827:

The subscriber has established a distillery in the villag-e of Williardsburg, for the
purpose of manufacturing -whiskey, which he is determined shall not be exceeded, If
equalled, in point of quality by any made or offered for sale in this region of country, and
will exchange for rye or corn on reasonable terms.

All things are good that he can mash.
But none so good as grain or cash.

There is also a notice signed by the publishers, Eankin Lewis & Company, to
the effect that "wheat, rye and oats will be taken in payment" for the paper, which
was then issued at Willardsburg, to which place it was removed in February or
March, 1837.


The removal of the Tioga Pioneer to Tioga left Wellsboro without a paper
until Saturday, August 18, 1837, when the first number of a new paper called the

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