Emanuel Swedenborg.

History of Tioga County, Pennsylvania online

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saw-mill on Elk run, just below Cherry Flats, and in 1841 erected a grist-mill.
These mills were sold to Joel Beebe, who ran the grist-mill until about 1853 and
the saw-mill until 1863 or 1863. In 1843 Joseph Jaquish erected a saw-mill on
Canoe Camp creek, near the Eichmond township line. This he ran for several years.
Levi ElHott and his sons, N. A. and Levi H. Elliott, built a saw-mill at Cherry
Flats, which they ran about ten years. The "Elk Horn mill" was erected on Elk
run, on the Eockwell place, about 1847, by Francis Weatherbee, Benjamin Kress
and Orrin Day "Weeks. It was operated until about 1870. About 1854 a saw-mill
was erected just above the Edwin Klock place, by Abraham Johnson and Thomas
Goodenow. It was operated for a number of years. In 1853 Irving Harkness estab-
lished a tannery at Cherry Flats, which he operated until 1854.

Tlie Covington Glass Works were erected in 1850 by David Hurlbut, south of
the borough. After being operated by many owners, they passed into the control
of Hirseh, Ely & Company, of Blossburg, abotit 1880, and were carried on by them
for about ten years. For the past five years the works have been operated by a com-
pany composed of citizens of Covington. A fine quality of window glass is manu-
factured, and employment given to about fifty persons.


Previous to the enactment of the public-school law in 1835, the schools of the
township were supported by subscription. The first school houses were log struc-
tures, crude in construction and primitive in appointments. Among the earliest
were those erected in the Frost Settlement, in Copp Hollow, at Cherry Flats and
at "West Covington. After the pubhc school law went into effect the township was
divided into districts, and a better class of school houses^ erected. As the township
increased in population the original districts were sub-divided, until in 1896 there
were thirteen districts, in which school is maintained dming six months of the year.
Good teachers, generally graduates of the State Normal School at Mansfield, are
employed, and good wages paid. The schools rank among the best public schools
of the county.



The postoffice of West Covington, the only one in the township, was established
in 1869. Edwin Kloek was postmaster until July, 1875, when Prancis Kelley, the
present incumbent, was appointed. The offiee is located in the Elk Eun valley, two
miles and a half northeast of Cherry Plats, on the stage route between Wellsboro and

The following named persons have held the office of justice of the peace in the
township: John Gray, 1816; re-appointed, 1835; Eli Critchell, 1819; Isaac Dewey,
1832; John Cochran, 1824; Ebenezer Eipley, 1834; John Marvin, 1835; re-
appointed, 1835; Almon Allen, 1837; Ephraim B. G-erould, 1837; Thomas Dyer,
1837; James C. Turner, 1838; John Shafiier, 1838; Thomas Putnam, 1830; re-
elected, 1845; David Hazzard, 1830; Eufus Smith, 1831; Dajiiel N. Hunt, 1833;
Martin Eobinson, 1833; Alanson Miller, 1834; Solon Eichards, 1835; William
Hill, 1835; Alfred Eipley, 1836; Evan Harris, 1837; Edwin Dyer, 1838; re-elected,
1840; Isaac Drake, 1838; Benjamia Kress, 1845; George Knox, 1850; Calvin
Newell, 1850; Josiah Graves, 1851; Eichard Videan, 1853; N. A. Elliott, 185G;
James T. Prost, 1859; N. A. Elliott, 1861; S. P. Eichards, 1864; re-elected, 1875;
Silas S. Eockwell, 1866; 11. G. Martin, 1867; re-elected, 1872, 1877, 1883; Joseph
Whiting, 1869; S. C. Watkins, 1883; re-elected, 1887; J. B. Pord, 1887; re-elected,
1893; Charles Jaquish, 1890.


The First Methodist Episcopal Church of Cherry Flats originated in a class
formed about thirty years ago. On June 9, 1877, the society was incorporated, the
incorporators being D. G. Edwards, S. H. Wood, Thomas E. Bowen, George Cramer
and H. G. Martin. In 1878 the present church building was completed and dedi-
cated. The church has been in the East Charleston charge since its organization
and is served by the pastors of the church at East Charleston, or Whitneyville. It
maintains a well attended Sunday-school and has a large membership.

The Second Adventist Church owns a neat building in Cherry Plats. The mem-
bers are residents of the western part of Covington and eastern part of Charleston.
A Sunday-school is also maintained. Adjoining the church is a cemetery.

The Covington Cemetery, just south of the borough, is the resting place of the
early settlers of the borough and vicinity. The first interments were made here
about 1835. Here repose the remains of Aaron Bloss and Euah (Lownsbury) Bloss,
his wife, of Isaac Walker, Ephraim B. Gerould and other early settlers.

The Gray Cemetery was established in 1881 on the Victor Gray place, west of
the river. The first body jpuried here was that of Charles Gray, a son of the owner
of the ground. This cemetery is neatly fenced and well taken care of.

The cemetery on the Lewis farm, on Elk run, has been used as a burial place
for many years. It is about a half mile east of West Covingion. . The remains of
a number of the early settlers of the Elk Eun valley are buried here.

Societies.— CoYington Borough Grange, No. 1016, P. of H., was organized
March 7, 1891, and now numbers twenty-seven members. It met in Covington
borough until December, 1894, when the place of meeting was changed to the resi-
dence of Bradley Wilkins, near West Covington. There is also a large and pros-
perous grange in the Frost Settlement.



Location and Surroundings— Population— Early Settlers— Manufacturing
Enterprises— Early Hotel Keepers and Merchants— Borough Organiza-
tion AND Officials— Postmasters and Physicians— Newspapers— Schools-
Churches and Secret Societies.

COVINGTON borough^ created in May, 1831, was taken from Covington town-
ship, and is one of the oldest boroughs in the county. It is situated on both
sides of the Tioga river, the valley of which is between one-half and three-fourths of
a mile wide here, and nearly level, affording an excellent site for even a much larger
place than the borough has grown to be. The area embraced within the borough
limits is less than a square mile, the residence portion of the place extending on the
south into the township. The public square and business center is at the crossing
of the Williamson road, which runs north and south, and the State road, which runs
east and west. The former road was cut through the Tioga valley in 1793-93, and
the latter from Towanda, Bradford county, to Wellsboro, in 1808. At the crossing
of these roads the village grew, taking the name of "Covington Four Comers." The
tide of travel being over these two great thoroughfares, it soon became a place of im-
portance and was at one time the largest village in the county, having no less than
three hotels, besides several stores, shops, mills, etc. After the completion of the
Tioga railroad in 1840, it was the point from which freight for Wellsboro was shipped
overland, and continued so until the building of the Fall Brook railroad to the
latter place. Though lacking much of the bustle and activity of former years,
it is still a good business point, being in the midst of a rich, well-cultivated,
prosperous and productive portion of the county. In 1870 it had 315 inhabitants;
in 1880, 343, and in 1890, 496.


Sherman Day in his "Historical Collections of Pennsylvania" says:

Mr. [Isaiah] Washburn, Mr. Elijah Putnam and Mr. Mallory settled at Covington
"corners" previous to 1806. Mr. [Aaron] Bloss and Mr. [Josiah] Hovey had settled about
the year 1801 two miles below. Mr. Sackett also lived near the same place. The land titles
were for a long' time in dispute between Connecticut and Pennsylvania claimants.
When at last they were settled in favor of Pennsylvania, or " Pennamites," as the " Con-
necticut Boys " called them, Mr. William Patton came in as their agent and laid out the
town, about the year 1823, and started a store and tavern. For some years the place in-
creased very slowly and was known as the corners. In 1831 it assumed the dignity of a

The first person to settle permanently on what afterwards became the
borough site, was Elijah Putnam, who bought a tract of land, partly within and
partly east of the borough limits. Peter Kelts, who had previously located at


Mansfield, came soon after Elijah Putnam, whose daughter, Sally, he married
January 1, 1818. Isaac Walker came from Sew Hampshire in 1813, reaching the
borough site July 4. He settled on the farm west of the river now owned by
Charles Howland. John Conrad Youngman, the first hotel keeper, came before
1813. The house kept by him stood on the northwest comer of the square.
Christopher Huntington, the first blacksmith, was here as early as 1814 or 1815.
His name appears on the assessment list of the latter year. Elijah Gaylord came
in 1830, and located near the old sash factory. He afterward removed to Bloss-
burg, where he passed the reinaining years of his life. Samuel Barber came in
1825. He kept the hotel, established by Youngman, for a number of years.
Ephraim B. Gerould, a native of Newtown, Connecticut, came about 1835. He
built the first saw-mill in the borough and became prominent as a lumberman
and merchant.

In 1820 Thomas Dyer came from Amherst, New Hampshire, and settled in
the southern part of Eichmond township. About 1835 he moved his family to
Covington. His son, Edwin, soon afterward opened a store here and became the
leading merchant and foremost citizen of the place. In 1837 Ira Patehen came
from Bath, Steuben county, New York, and opened a gunsmith shop, continuing
in business until his death, April 11, 1895.

The above named were the principal settlers during the earlier years of the
borough's history. Others there were who came and remained temporarily, be-
longing to the restless class, who followed up the pioneers, and found more interest
and excitement in making new locations than in settling down permanently in
any one place. They belonged to a large class who have left but a fleeting memory
behind them, but who were, nevertheless, adventurous and daring, if not at all
times as enterprising and industrious as those who remained and assisted in the
upbuilding of town and country.


The assessment list of Covington township for 1818 shows that William Pat-
ton, proprietor of much of the land now embraced within the borough limits, was
the owner of a saw-mill. The exact location of this mill cannot now be de-
termined. It stood in Mr. Patton's name until 1819, when it appears to have
been transferred to Peter Kelts, son-in-law of Major Elijah Putnam. He was
succeeded as owner, in 1823, by Thomas Prosser, who owned it until 1825, when
it disappears from the assessment list altogether. In 1823 Hiram Thomas, "tan-
ner and currier," located within the borough, and in 1830, established a "tan
yard," to which he added the business of shoe making in 1831. He operated it
until 1833. A tannery was established on the site of the postoffice building in
1830, by George Knox, Sr., in which his son, George Knox, Jr., worked as
"tanner and currier." In 1839 this tannery became the property of John G.
Boyd, S. S. Cleaver and L. C. Levalley. After Mr. Boyd's death, in February,
1842, the partnership was dissolved, and the business discontinued. In 1843
L. C. Levalley and Ephraim B. Gerould erected a tannery near the present saw-
mill. About 1849 they sold it to Isaac Berry and Thomas Jones, who carried it
on until 1868, when it shut down. In 1830 John Gray, who had one-haK


interest, Pliny Buit and Ephraim B. Gerould, each having one-fourth interest,
erected a saw-mill on the west side of the river, where the present mill now stands.
Within a year Mr. Gerould acquired Burr's interest. Gray's interest was ac-
quired by Eichard Videan, who soon sold to Edwin Dyer. Mr. Gerould appears to
have acquired Mr. Dyer's interest, and to have operated the mill until his death
in 1845, after which his son, Otis G. Gerould, carried on the business until 1879,
when H. S. Pick purchased the mill. He sold it a few years later to Lorenzo
Doud, the present owner. Three mills have been destroyed by fire on this site.
The one now standing was erected in 1866. It is a water-power mill, with an old-
fashioned, upright saw, and is devoted to sawing for local demand.

In 1831 James Weeks established a fulling-mill between the old Knox tan-
nery and the river. This, a few years later, developed into a woolen factory. In
1837 Edwin Dyer and E. B. Gerould acquired the property, which, in 1839, was
purchased by John G. Boyd. After Mr. Boyd's death, in 1842, the enterprise ap-
pears to have been discontinued. About 1843 Asa Crandall erected a factory in
the southern part of the borough for the manufacture of furniture, making a
specialty of bedsteads. He carried on the enterprise until a short time before
his death, in 1850. In 1845 Edwin Dyer erected a building, intended for a
foundry, beside the railroad, at the crossing of the State road. The depot burned
that year, and the building has since been used as a passenger and freight station.
The idea of starting a foundry was abandoned. About this time, also, James
Weeks established a woolen factory, between the old Boyd & Cleaver tannery and
the river. This was run successfully for a number of years. In 1866 George A.
Spring came to Covington from Washington, D. C, and established a bottling
works in the building now occupied by Eobinson & Morris. A few years later
his father-in-law, Jacob Hartman, became associated with him, and the business
has since been carried on under the firm name of Hartman & Spring. They
manufacture soda and mineral waters, and have a large trade, especially in the
summer season. In October, 1881, Bennett & Spring erected a fruit dryer and
evaporator, which they operated up to a few years ago, during good fruit seasons.
The uncertainty of the fruit crop, however, lead to an abandonment of the enter-
prise. The building is now used by the Standard Oil Company, who have recently
established a distributing station in the borough.


About 1815 John Conrad Youngman began keeping hotel in a building
erected on the northwest corner of the square. Among those who kept this house
after Mr. Youngmaja, were Samuel Barber, who took charge in 1835; William
Hagenbach, P. E. Young, Benjamin Phillips, Phineas Cleaver and Thomas
Graves. Each landlord added something to the building, until in time it became
a large three-story structure. It was destroyed by fire about ten years ago, being
vacant at the time. About 1819 another hotel building, long known as the "Salt
Box," was erected near the southwest corner of the square. J. 0. Pine kept this
hotel for many years. In 1835 Aaron Bloss removed from Blossburg and resumed
hotel keeping here, continuing until a short time before his death, in March,
1843. It was afterwards kept by Phineas Cleaver and James D. Husted. In the


fall of 1895 the building was torn down. A third hotel was built west of the
river by Elijah Putnam. James Porter was the first landlord here. This build-
ing, the only survivor of the early hotels, is now used as a tenement house. The
Bartlett House, George A. Spring, landlord, is the only hotel in the borough at
the present time. It was erected by Edwin Dyer for a store building.

Pliny Burr, the first merchant, opened a store in 1830. He appears to have
discontinued business within a year, and to have resumed again in 1835, in which
year, also, Benjamin Kress opened a store. On the assessment list of 1837, Pliny
Burr is marked "moved." In 1836 Benjamin Kress sold his store to George C.
Kress. Thomas Dyer embarked in business in 1837. About 1837, also, B. H.
Taylor established a store. In 1839 Dyer sold to John G. Boyd. Edwin Dyer
began business as a merchant in 1841. In this year, also, the mercantile firm
of Packard & Tajdor, consisting of Stephen Packard and B. H. Taylor, was formed.
It lasted but a year. Packard continued in business alone for several years.
Henry W. Graves is assessed as a "merchant" in the list for 1847. He was rich
for those days, having $3,000 at interest. 0. P. Taylor, who clerked for his
brother, B. H. Taylor, embarked in business for himself in 1846, and afterward
became a partner with Edwin Dyer. This partnership was afterwards dissolved,
each of the pajtners engaging in business for himself, Mr. Dyer continuing until
his death, in 1879. John Calvin Bennett embarked in business in 1849, and
continued until his death, January 31, 1889, when he was succeeded by his son,
A. M. Bennett, now superintendent of the Elmira Glass Works, Elmira, New
York. This store is now conducted by Eobinson & Morris, as the successors of
Bennett & Eobinson.


The borough of Covington was created at the May term of the court, of quarter
sessions in 1831, at which terni the borough of Lawrenceville was also created.
The first ofiieers were, John Gray, burgess; Nathan Paul, Abiel E. Eussell, Hiram
Thomas, Ephraim B. Gerould and Abner Newland, councilmen, and Calvin M.
Newland, constable. Eegular borough elections were held and borough officers
elected until 1834, the burgesses being James Weeks, 1833; Tilly Marvin, 1833,
and Harmon Whitehead, 1834. From 1834 to 1851 the charter of the borough
lapsed. It was revived in the latter year, since which time the following-named
persons have filled the office of burgess: William C. Webb, 1853; George Knox,
1853; I. C. Bennett, 1854; Edwin Dyer, 1855: Thomas Putnam, 1856; H. M.
Gould, 1857-58; Edwin Dyer, 1859; Ira Patchen, 1860; John C. Bennett, 1861;
Leonard Palmer, 1863; P. P. Piitnam, 1863-64; Leonard Palmer, 1865; 0. G.
Gerould, 1866-67; A. M. Bennett, 1868-69; Jacob Hari;man, 1870; E. B. Deeker,
1871-73; A. M. Bennett, 1873; Charles Howland, 1874; T. B. Putnam, 1875;
E. K. Skinner, 1876; A. M. Bennett, 1877; 0. G. Gerould, 1878; W. H. Lamkin,
1879; S. Blanchard, 1880; Edwin Klock, 1881; J. M. Hoagland, 1883; T. B.
Putnam, 1883; A. M. Bennett, 1884-85; H. S. Pick, 1886; P. M. Putnam, 1887;
E. E. Phelps, 1888; Joshua Ingalls, 1889; George Eidge, 1890; John Kendriek,
1891-93; 0. G. Gerould, 1894-96, and G. S. Harding, elected in 1897.

Since the re-organization of the borough, in 1851, the office of justice of


the peace has been held by the following named persons: Eiehard Videan, 1852;
Stephen S. Packard, 1855; re-elected, 1860, 1865, 1870, 1875; Ira Patchen,
1856; re-elected, 1861; Edwin Dyer, 1866; re-elected, 1871; Joseph 0. Price,
1875; J. P. Walker, 1877; 0. G. Gerould, 1879; re-elected, 1884; L. B. Smith,
1881; re-elected, 1886; S. D. Forrest, 1889; Colin B. Clark, 1891; Augustus
Eedfield, 1892, and John E. Brown, 1895.


Thomas Putnam, the first postmaster of Covington, was appointed in 1822.
He held the office until 1826. His successor, Ephraim B. Gerould, continued in
the office until his death, in 1845, when Edwin Dyer was appointed. His suc-
cessors have been George Knox, David Caldwell, who held the office from 1857 to
1861; Julius Doane, who served for over twenty years; Eloyd E. Phelps, and Miss
Isabella T. Dyer, who was appointed in July, 1889.

The name of "Hyram Cannon, physician," appears upon the assessment list
of 1816, as does, also, that of Stillman Caanon, afterwards a practicing physician
at Mansfield and Mainesburg. It is presumed they both lived at Mansfield, and
that Hiram included Covington in his practice. His name is missing from the
assessment list of 1818. Dr. Pliny Power, a pioneer physician of Lawrenceville
and Tioga, located in Mansfield in 1819, and included Covington in his practice.
Dr. Hiram Whitehead located in the borough in 1831 and practiced for a few
years and then devoted himself to farming. Dr. George' Spratt_ came in 1835
and practiced several years. Dr. Henry Kilbourn located in the borough in 1840,
and for nearly half a century practiced in Covington and Blossburg, residing at
different times in each place. Dr. E. S. Bobbins, who is still actively engaged
in practice, came in 1856. Dr. S. Banks came in 1858, but remained only a short
time. Dr. Henry Kilbourn, Jr., began practice in 1859, and continued until his
death, in 1888. Then came Dr. C. W. Hazlett, Dr. Smith and Dr. Lewis Town-
send. The present resident physicians are Dr. E. S. Eobbins, Dr. Philemon Eum-
sey, who carries on a drug store, and Dr. S. A. Gaskill.


In February, 1888, S. D. Forrest began the publication of The Riverside
Intelligencer. It was issued monthly, and was devoted to local affairs, having,
also, well-chosen selections for home reading. On August 17, 1889, it was enlarged
to a seven-column folio, and appeared under the name of the Covington In-
telligencer, which was issued weekly until Mr. Forrest's death, ISTovember 15,
1892. His widow sold the plant to A. and C. C. Eedfield, who issued the first
number of the WeeTcly Monitor, February 3, 1893. In November, 1895, C. C.
Eedfield removed the paper to Painted Post, New York. On December 5, 1895,
I. E. Doud began the publication of the Covington Record, a seven-column folio,
published weekly and devoted to local interests. It suspended publication in the
fall of 1896. On January 23, 1897, C. C. Eedfield, former publisher of the
Weekly Monitor, began the publication of the Covington Sun. It appears weekly
and is devoted to local affairs.



The first school in the borough was established as early as 1815, and was sus-
tained by subscription. In 1816 a one-story school building was erected near
the site of the present graded school building. After being used many years it
was torn down, and a building, near the site of the Presbyterian church, which
had been erected for a store, was used for school purposes until 1868, when the
present graded school building was erected. Until the establishment of the
graded school, that portion of the borough west of the river was a separate school
district. At the present time three teachers are employed. There is an average
of eight months school each year. Among the names of the earlier teachers, still
remembered by the living, are those of Joel Harkness, Arminus Fellows, Eobert
Bailey and Lucy Putnam.

In 1841 Prof. Julius Doane established a seminary on the west side of the
river, with Miss Lucy Putnam as preceptress. Instruction was given in the
languages, higher mathematics, music, etc. It was maintained for three years
and had an average attendance of seventy students.


The Church of Christ of Covington was organized by Elder James Whitehead,
October 7, 1829, with the following members: James "Whitehead, Hannah
Whitehead, Adam Empy, Anna Empy, Norman Lanphear and Joshua Newell.
Elder Whitehead served as pastor until 1835. His successors have been James
Welton, 1838-42; H. A. Pratt, 1842-44; Ira Brown, 1844-45; M. Buzzell and
Calvin Newell, 1845-48; Theobald Miller, 1848-53; B. E. Hurd, 1853-55; C. D.
Kinney, 1855-59; A. G. Hammond, 1859-66; J. G. Encell, 1867-68; J. W. E.
Stewart, 1869-70; I. E. Spencer, 1870-82; G. W. Headley, 1882-84; J. 0. Cutts,
1884-87; M. S. Blair, 1891, and U. A. White, 1891-96. Eev. Leon J. Eeynolds,
the present pastor, took charge in January, 1897. On June 2, 1848, the building
committee of the church entered into a contract with James Levegood for the
erection of a church building on a lot west of the river. The building was erected
and dedicated January 13, 1849, being the first house of worship completed in the
borough. It is still used, having been kept in good repair. The church now
numbers 160 members, and is one of the largest in the county. There are 130
teachers and pupils in the Sunday-school, of which the pastor is the superintendent.
The pastors of this church have also served the church at Canoe Camp, in Eich-
mond township.

The First Methodist Episcopal Church of Covington was organized over fifty
years ago. Itinerant Methodist ministers, it is said, visited the Tioga valley and
preached in Covington as early as 1809. The pioneer among these was Eev. Caleb
Boyer. Following him came Eev. Hiram G. Warner and Eev. Caleb Kendall. In
1848 a church building was erected, the class then numbering fifteen members.
May 9, 1853, the society was incorporated, the incorporators being Joseph Hubble,

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