Emanuel Swedenborg.

History of Tioga County, Pennsylvania online

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Companies— Hotels— Newspapers— Bailroads— Churches and Cemeteries-

WESTFIELD borough is situated on the Co-wanesque river, midway between
the eastern and western boundary lines of Westfield township, from which it
was taken in February, 1867. The area embraced within its boundaries contains
670 acres and it is one of the best locations for a town in the county. The site is
not only one of the most beautiful and picturesque in the Cowanesque valley, but
has advantages which have already made the borough an important business
center. To the north lies the rich and prosperous township of Brookfield, easily
accessible through the valleys of the North Fork, California brook, Purple brook
and other small streams. To the south and east lie the equally prosperous town-
ships of Westfield, Clymer and Chatham, from all of which it draws a large trade,
in addition to what it commands for miles up and down the Cowanesque river
valley, whose lands, noted for their fertility, respond each year with generous crops
as a reward for well-directed and intelligent cultivation. The valley of the Cow-
anesque river is traversed by the Fall Brook railway, and that of Mill creek,
which iiows from the south and unites its waters with the Cowanesque river, near the
eastern borough limits — by the Addison and Pennsylvania railway. These two
lines of railroad, both built in 1882, give the borough direct communication with
the great trunk lines of New York state, and with the great market centers of
the coast. Since their building Westfield has grown rapidly, having more than
doubled its population. At present it is the largest of the six boroughs in the
Cowanesque valley. In 1870 it had 370 inhabitants; in 1880, 579, and in 1890,


The first white settler within the borough limits was Eeuben Cook, Sr., one of the
first settlers in the Cowanesque valley. The exact year of his coming cannot be
ascertained, but it was previous to 1809, in which year Ayers Tuttle settled in the
township just east of the borough. Cook built a log cabin, the first one within
the borough limits, on the south bank of the Cowanesque river, where the River
street bridge, leading to the Tremain grist mill site, crosses that stream. At that time
he was about sixty years of age, given to hunting, and, as a rule, remained but a
year or two in a place. In 1816 Jesse Lapham, who, as early as 1810, had settled
at the mouth of Jemison creek, bought 200 acres of land in the western part


of the borough, which he cleared and improved. Mr. Lapham was a native of
Khode Island and a Quaker. He was also the first carpenter aad first practical
surveyor m this section. Jonathan Seamans, also a native of Ehode Island, set-
tled, m 1817, within the borough limits, and later in life moved farther up the
river into the township, settling on the farm still owned and occupied by his sons.
Ezra Bowen, a Quaker, came from Ehode Island in the same party with Mr. Seamans,
and bought a part of the Jesse Lapham tract. Martin Bowen also came with the
same party and settled at the same time. Jonathan Pierce came in 1817, from
Chenango county, JSTew York, and settled west of Lapham, on what is now known
as the Augustus Streeter farm. About this time, Jacob Price, a native of New
Jersey, and a Quaker, settled in the edge of the borough, near the Tremain mill-site,
on what is known as the "Dick" Phillips place. In 1819 Abram Pease, a native
of Connecticut, came from Steuben county, New York, and settled on sixty acres
which he purchased from Ezra Bowen, and which afterwards formed a part of the
Eichard Krusen farm. A few years later he exchanged farms with his brother
Oliver, who had settled in the township below the borough. James King, native
of Ehode Island, and a descendant of the "Pilgrim Fathers," came in 1821 and
settled on the Eichard Krusen farm. In 1831 Shelden Streeter, a native of New
Hampshire, settled in the township. Two years later he removed to Shippen
township, and, in 1836, returned and settled within the borough. In 1835 David
Eixford settled near the mouth of Jemison creek, and, in 1833, removed to the
place first settled by Eeuben Cook. Zacheus Mallory came in 1833 and settled
on the farm previously occupied by his brother-in-law, Jesse Lapham.

Luke Scott and James C. Turner came between 1830 and 1835 and opened
the first store in the place. Turner was also the first hotel keeper. In 1834 B.
Schuyler Lewis, who had previously resided in Brookfield township, came to West-
field. After remaining a year or two, he removed to Lawrenceville, where he kept
a boarding house on the Coming and Blossburg railroad, then being constructed.
About 1838-39 he returned to Westfield and soon afterward engaged in the grocery
business. He was the second postmaster. About 1835 Samuel Baker located
here and soon afterward bought the greater part of the land now forming the
business portion of the borough. Eichard Phillips came about 1836 and settled on
the place first occupied by Jacob Price. In 1837 he built a saw-mill near the
late Tremain mill. Hollister Baker, a native of Eochester, New York, and a
millwright, came in 1839 and in 1840 built a water power grist-mill for Eichard
Phillips on the site of the burned Tremain mill. About 1840 Francis Strang
came and opened a general store. He was soon followed by George Close and by
Hale & Hall. In 1840, also, Aaron L. S. Leach, a native of Niagara county. New
York, came and for several years worked at his trade as a shoemaker. David Close
came in 1840, also, and for seven years kept the Eed Lion Hotel. In 1844 Eichard
Krusen, a native of Tompkins county. New York, entered the employ of Hale &
Hall as a clerk. In 1846 he bought them out and afterwards became a leading
merchant of the place, continuing in business for thirty-seven years. In 1845
Peter B. Bush removed from Knoxville, and during the next five years kept the
Eed Lion and Boardman Hotels. The latter was built by Eansom Boardman, who
came in the early forties. In 1845 Daniel McNaughton, M. D., a native of Steuben


county, New York, located here and began the practice of his profession, continuing
until his death in 1883. Williani Simmons, a native of Benton, Yates county.
New York, came in 1845. He soon after entered the store of Eiehaxd Erusen
as a clerk, and later embarked in business for himself. In 1846 John Montanye
removed from Clymer township and built and operated what is now known as the
Eberle tannery. Others, the date of whose coming cannot be ascertained, had
also located in the village previous to the last mentioned year, some remaining but a
short time, while a few became permanent residents. The names given, however,
embrace nearly all of those identified with the early settlement and growth of the
place, which at that time was but a small and struggliag village.


The borough of Westfield was organized in February, 1867, the first meeting
of council being held on the 16th of that month. At this meeting B. B. Strang,
burgess, and Eichard Krusen, James Hasten, M. D., Simon Wilcox, S. B. Lewis and
Thomas C. Sanders, councilmen, were sworn in. Thomas C. Sanders was elected
secretary; Nelson Gardner, treasurer, and B. Lewis, street commissioner. The
following named persons have been elected to the ofi&ce of burgess since 1867:

Ambrose Close, 1868-69; HoUister Baker, 1870; S. B. Lewis, 1871-73; J. W.
Hancock, 1873; Lovel Plank, 1874; J. "W. Hancock, 1875; T. C. Sanders, 1876;
B. B. Strang, 1877; E. E. Thompson, 1878; S. W. Shirley, 1879; Charles Bliss,
1880; Elijah Thompson, 1881; Albert Wetherbee, 1883; Eichard Krusen, 1883;
Hiram Hunter, 1884-87; Ambrose Close, 1888; Hiram Hunter, 1889; W. F.
Everitt, 1890-91; C. M. Allen, 1893; M. D. Lawrence, 1893; Lovel Planlc, 1894-96,
and John E. Dengle, elected in 1897.

The office of justice of the peace has been filled by the following named
persons since the organization of the borough: Francis Strang, 1867; J. 0. Thomp-
son, 1873; Frank Buck, 1873; T. C. Sanders, 1874; Dr. Daniel McNaughton, 1877;
Niles White, 1878; re-elected in 1879; Orrin 0. Tremain, 1879; W. H. Parsons,
1880; re-elected, 1885, 1890 and 1895; M. L. Foster, 1883; Frank Strang, 1886;
re-elected, 1890; John T. McNeil, 1895.


The Westfield postoffice was established in the early twenties, the first post-
master being Henry B. Trowbridge, then living in the township, about a mile east of
the borough. He held the office nearly twenty years, and was succeeded by B.
Schuyler Lewis, a resident of the borough. Then followed Adriel King, Dr.
Boardman and Thomas Leach. George Close acted as deputy for Leach, and
seems to have had charge of the office, so much so, that many still speak of him as
the postmaster. Leach was succeeded, in 1861, by Daniel McNaughton, M. D.,
who held the office until 1873, when he resigned to serve as an associate judge of
the coimty, and was succeeded by his son, Niles W. McNaughton, who had been
his assistant.' In the fall of 1885 Mr. McNaughton was succeeded by James
Masten, M. D., who held the office until July, 1889, when William N. Hurlbut was
appointed. Mr. Hurlbut's successor, Francis Strang, was appointed December 38,
1895. In the earlier years of the borough's existence, the mail was carried on


horseback to and from Williamsport, through the wilderness. Now the Westfield
ofSee is one of the best paying and best patronized in the county.


The first physician to practice in Westfield was Dr^ Barton Streeter, who was
here about 1830. He and his immediate successors were required to practice over
a large area, including "Westfield, Brookfield, Clymer, Chatham and Deerfleld town-
ships, and even portions of Potter county. Visits were made on horseback, and
long rides over lonely roads, night and day, in summer and winter, were a common
experience. Among the doctors who have resided in the borough and practiced
their profession were William B. Eitchie, Dr. Townsend, Dr. Benedict, Dr. Ide,
Bbenezer Pratt, Elihu Y. Brown, Philetus J. Boaxdman, Daniel McNaughton,
who came in 1845 and practiced until his death in 1883; A. Prazer, Stephen
Begell, who removed to Brookfield township; James Hasten, who came in 1860, is
still in practice, and is the oldest physician in the borough; P. H. S. Eitter, Dr. In-
gram, and Dr. Hazlett. Besides Dr. Hasten, the profession is at present represented
by Dr. A. L. Bottum, who began practice here ia 1875; Dr. A. T. Kunkel, who
came in 1883, and Dr. P. G. Hasten, a son of Dr. James Hasten, who began practice
in 1891. The dental profession is represented by Dr. H. J. Stocking.

The first lawyer to locate in Westfield was Augustus Streeter, a native of Pur-
mantown, Shippen township, who was admitted to practice in December, 1854. He
continued in practice until his death, in 1883, a period of over twenty-seven years.
Butler B. Strang, who, as did also Hr. Streeter, studied law in the office of A. J.
Honroe, at KnoxviUe, was admitted in 1853, and located in Westfield soon after his
fellow student. In 1856 Hr. Strang was elected district attorney. In 1860 he was
elected to the legislature and served four terms, and was speaker of the House m 1870,
in the fall of which year he was elected State Senator, and served two terms. In
both bodies he was a prominent and influential member, and was chairman of a num-
ber of important committees. T. C. Sanders and C. H. Adams, al^o P^^^ticed m
Westfield for a number of years. The bar is now represented by Clark W. Beach
who was admitted to practice in 1865, and who has for several years past been ocated
in Westfield, coming here from Knoxville; D. W. Baldwin, a rising young lawyer,
and John T. HcMel, who fills the office of justice of the peace and also practices law.


Scott & Turner, the firm being composed of Luke Scott and James C. Turner,
were the pioneer merchants of Westfield. They began business in a frame building
which they erected on the site of the present William Simmons store about 1835.
They were followed by Prancis Strang, who came about 1840, George Close and Hale
& Hall. Eichard Krusen came in 1844 and entered the employ of the latter firm
as a clerk. In 1846 he bought them out, and at once became a leading spirit in the
mercantile life of the place. Others quickly followed these pioneer merchants, each
year witnessing the establishment of some new business enterprises to meec the
demands of increasing population and growing trade.

The Phillips Mills were built by Eichard Phillips, who came into the borough
in 1837, in which year he built a water power saw-mill north of the Cowanesque river,


taJiing the water to run it from that stream. In 1840 Hollister Baker, a millwright,
erected for Mr. Phillips a three-run, buhr mill, costing $5,000, on the site of the
recent Tremain mill. The machinery of this mill was run by a twenty-foot, back-
shot water wheel. In 1844 the race was extended, the water being taken from the
river as at present, south of Main street, opposite the Eichard Krusen place. This
mill burned October 3, 1869, and on its site was erected the Westfield flouring mill,
which was completed in October, 1870. It was run both by water and steam power,
the mill proper costing $6,000, and the steam power $3,500. From 1888 until the
fall of 1896, when it was destroyed by fire, it was owned and operated by 0. A. Tre-
main. It had a capacity of 350 bushels a day.

Hollister Baker's Foundry, the first in the borough, was established in 1840, by
Hollister Baker, on the site of the present Phillips foundry. This he operated until
1863, when it was burned. In 1865 Mr. Baker and his brother built on the same
ground a shop for the manufacture of carriages, wagons, etc. This was burned in
1870. During this time also Mr. Baker's son, Albert Baker, was connected with him
in business. Another shop was erected by them and operated for a short time.

The Elerle Tannery was established on Mill creek, in the southern part of the
borough, in 1846, by John Montanye. In 1874 it was purchased by Prank Eberle,
and is now operated by his son, Joseph Eberle. It is devoted to the taiming of upper
leather, and is a successful and prosperous enterprise.

Rood's Carriage and Wagon Shop was established in 1850 by Morris DeMaurier,
who operated it until 1863, since which time it has been owned and operated by
Theodore Eood, who has acquired a reputation not only as a skillful workman but
as an inventor. He has recently invented an automatic wagon brake that has
already attracted the notice of manufacturers throughout the country.

Kelts & Gilbert's Tannery was established about 1853 by J. Kelts and W. W.
Gilbert, who also were shoe merchants. About 1862 the partnership was dissolved
and Mr. Kelts carried on the tannery alone for a number of years.

The Oowanesque Tannery, the leading manufacturing industry in the borough,
was established in 1875, by H. H. Crary, "William H. Garritt, James Horton and E.
G. Davidge, under the name and style of Crary, Garritt, Horton & Company. A large
tannery, with bark sheds, etc., was erected in the eastern part of the borough, on land
purchased of John L. "Wilbur. Mr. Garritt died in November, 1876, and soon after-
ward his interest was purchased by Walter Horton. The firm name was changed to
H. H. Crary & Company, and so continued until May 1, 1893, when the tannery became
the property of the Union Tanning Company, which is a member of the United
States Leather Company. E. G. Davidge filled the position of superintendent until
November 5, 1895, when he resigned. P. S. Martin is now the acting superintendent.
Henry Eick fills the position of foreman. This tannery gives constant employment
to about seventy men, and has an average output of 400 sides of sole leather per day,
in the tanning of which there is used annually between 7,000 and 8,000 tons of hem-
lock bark.

Albert Baker's Foundry and Machine Shop is owned and operated by Albert
Baker. In 1880 he built the machine shop a short distance east of the old Holhster
Baker foundry site, and in 1887 erected a foundry building. These enterprises he



has Since carried on successfully, giving constant employment to a number of skilled

The Westfield Co-operative Association operate a foundry and machine shop on
the site of the old HoUister Baker foundry. The property was purchased in 1883
by J. Phillips, and is also known as the Phillips foundry.

The Westfield Planing Mill was established in 1883, north of the Fall Brook
raUroad, near the depot, by W. N. Hurlbut, E. Krusen, L. Plank and H. Plank, under
the firm name of E. Krusen & Company. They were succeeded by the Westfield
Manufacturing Company, who caoried on the enterprise until 1889, when they
were succeeded by L. Plank, William Mead and C. E. Krusen.

The Farmers' and Traders' Banh was established in 1885 by E. M. Tucker as
a private banking institution. This bank has a capital of $35,000, is ably managed
and has the confidence of the general public. The officers are E. M. Tucker, presi-
dent, and E. J. Seely, cashier.

The Westfield Steam Flouring Mill was built in 1886, near the Addison and
Pennsylvania railroad depot, by John B. Bush and John Eichaxdson. Mr. Bush
afterwards sold out his interest to J. Whitmarsh. This enterprise proved a valuable
and important one, greatly enlarging the country trade of the borough. Its destruc-
tion by fire in 1891 inflicted a severe loss upon its owners. It has not been rebuilt.

The Westfield Marble WorTcs were established by Johnson & Van Dusen in 1887.
In 1890 the firm became Van Dusen Brothers, who do a large business in Tioga and
Potter counties, Pennsylvania, and in southern New York.

The Pride Opera House, on the north side of Main street, was erected in 1896.
It is a handsome brick edifice, the lower story of which is used for business purposes,
and is occupied by the grocery house of John E. Dengle, who is also the manager of
the opera house, which is fully equipped with opera chairs, stage scenery and other
amusement accessories.


The Westfield Oil and Mining Company was incorporated August 4, 1865, with
a capital stock of $500,000, divided in 10,000 shares of $50 each, $10,000 of which
was paid in. The company was organized for the purpose of boring for petroleum
oil. Leases on about 1,000 acres of land belonging to different parties were secured
and a well drilled on the Phillips farm. Oil and gas in large quantities were found.
The incorporators of the company were Lucius C. Beebe, president; Charles E.
Combs, treasurer; John F. Kingsbury, secretary, and A. L. Bennett and A. B.

Cowanesque Valley Agricultural Society was organized August 14, 1886, and
incorporated August 31, 1887, with a capital of $5,000, for the purpose of holding
agricultural and horticultural fairs in Westfield township, and for the improvement
of agriculture and study of the kindred arts and sciences. There were twenty-four
charter members, embracing many of the prominent citizens of Westfield borough
and township. The first officers were L. K. King, president; E. M. Tucker and A.
J. Montanye, vice-presidents; J. F. Eugaber, corresponding secretary; S. Martin, Jr.,
recording secretary; W. L. Converse, treasurer; P. V. Eolason, librarian; E. M.
Tucker, S. Martin, Jr., and W. L. Converse, trustees. The society owns thirty acres


of ground, with buildings, etc., valued at $13,000, situated at the mouth of North
Pork creek, in the township. Within the inclosure is an excellent half-mile race
track. The fairs which are held here annually draw large crowds and have been
very successful.

Westfield Water Company was incorporated September 2, 1890, with a capital
of $25,000, for the purpose of supplying the borough with water. The incorporators
were "W. H. Vermilyea, Hiram Hunter, W. N. Hurlbut, G. H. Tremain and N. W.
McISTaughton. Since the organization of this company the borough has put in its
own water works system.

Union Tanning Company was incorporated April 17, 1893, with a capital stock
of $50,000. The incorporators and directors were 0. B. Grant, S. P. Davidge, A.
A. Clearwater, George C. Darling and Prank E. Bible. May 1, 1893, this corporation
became a member of the United States Leather Company, which controls a large
number of tanneries in Tioga, Potter and other counties, under the name of the
Union Tanning Company.

The United States Pipe Line Company, in 1893, erected a pumping station,
equipped with powerful Holly pumps, on the Fall Brook railroad, in the northern
part of the borough. Pour reservoir tanks of 5,000 gallons each were placed in
position on the hillside, the purpose being to make this place a pumping station
between Bradford and Athens, it being thought at the time that the distance was
too great to pump from the former to the latter place without the aid of an inter-
mediate station. It afterwards turned out that this could be done, and the pumps
here have never been called into use. The station is in charge of Prank H. Walker,
who looks after the section of the line between Oswayo and Elkland.


The Bed Lion Hotel, the pioneer hotel in the borough, was opened by James C.
Turner between 1835 and 1840. It had a number of landlords, among whom were
George Hunter, Peter B. Bush, David Close, Henry Brown, William Douglas and
Erastus G. Hill.

The Hill House was the successor of the Eed Lion Hotel and was erected by
Erastus G. HiU about 1850. Among those who succeeded him as landlord here were
A. L. S. Leach, M. G. Bowman and others. This hotel burned about twenty years

The Boardman House, erected west of the river bridge, by Eansom Boardman,
in the early forties, had a number of landlords, among whom were A. L. S. Leach,
Peter B. Bush and Samuel Scranton. This hotel has been used as a dwelling for
over twenty years.

The Westfield House was built by George Close before the Civil War. He ran
it for three or four years. It was then kept by C. Phillips for a number of years. He
was succeeded by S. B. Lovelace, who remained two years. It next became the prop-
erty of Mrs. James Strock. In 1878 J. W. Smith became manager of the house for
her, and before the close of the year rented the property. In 1883 he purchased it,
and iu 1890 rebuilt the hotel inside and out, making it one of the best hotel buildings
in the Cowanesque valley.

The American Hotel was erected in 1885 by Shirley Brothers, who ran it until


1887, when Beach Brothers succeeded them. They were succeeded by Lucius
Inscho, who sold out in 1894 to Asa Hill and John Eohrback. Mr. Hill soon after-
wards bought out Mr. Eohrback's interest. He has since thoroughly repaired and
improved the building and it is now, in every respect, a first-class hotel.


The Westfield Index, established by James V. Leach and IT. W. McNaughton,
was the first newspaper in the Cowanesque valley. The editorial department was
under the personal charge of Mr. Leach. It was independent in politics. Mr. Mc-
Naughton soon sold out to Mr. Leach, who discontinued the publication of the paper
in July, 1874. In November, 1875, 0. S. Webster purchased the material and started
the Westfield Idea, as an organ of the Greenback party. Early m. 1878 the paper
was removed to Wellsboro.

In the latter part of 1878 E. M. Bixby, formerly of the Elkland Journal, began
the publication of the Westfield Free Press. In 1881 he sold out to J. E. Eugaber,
who conducted it until January 1, 1890, when J. Hart Miller and A. C. Kimball
purchased it. At the close of the year Mr. Kimball bought Mr. Miller's interest and
has since conducted the paper alone. In January, 1896, he changed it to an all home
print. It is independent in politics, being devoted to local news and the interests of
the northwestern part of the county. It is bright, readable, and ably conducted.


In the year 1882 the Fall Brook Eailroad Company completed a liue of railroad
from Lawrenceville to Westfield, and to Harrison Valley, in Potter county. The first
station agent, J. C. Edwards, was succeeded in 1883, by E. S. Horton, who still fills
that position. The Addison and Pennsylvania railroad was also built in 1882 as
a narrow gauge road. In March, 1895, it was changed to standard gauge. At
Westfield it turns southwest and follows the Mill creek valley, passing through

Online LibraryEmanuel SwedenborgHistory of Tioga County, Pennsylvania → online text (page 58 of 163)