Franklin Ellis.

History of Fayette County, Pennsylvania : with biographical sketches of many of its pioneers and prominent men online

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j B. Lindsey, Samuel S. Snowdon ; Town Clerk, George Jlor-

1859.- Chief Burgess, Seth T. Hurd; Assistant Burgess, Thos.

B. Murphy; Town Council, William Campbell, William
n. Johnston, G. H. Bowman, William T. Isler, Reed,

\ William Parkhill, William B. Lindsey ; Town Clerk, Wil-

liam L. Wilkinson.
1S60.— Chief Burgess, Jason Baker; Assistant Burgess, Ed-
ward L. Moorehouse ; Town Council, Adam Jacobs, Thomas

C. Tiernan. Edward Toynbce, Wm. T. Isler, Isaac Reed,
Austin Livingston, G. H. Bowman. William H. Johnston,
William Campbell ; Town Clerk, William L. Wilkinson.

1861.— Chief Burgess, Jason Baker; Assistant Burgess, Ed-
ward L. Moorhouse: Town Council, William T. Isler, S. S.
i Snowden, John R. Button. William H. Johnston, Edward

j Toynbee.Thomas C. Tiern:in. G. H. Bowman, Adam Jacobs;

Town Clerk, William L. Wilkinson.
1S02.— Chief Burgess, N. S. Potts; Assistant Burgess, E. Reiser ;
I Town Council, Samuel Steele, William 11. Jolinston. 0. M.

1 Johnston, J. W. Jeffries, Thomas C. Tiernan, AVilliam T.

j Isler, Edward Toynbee, John R. Button, S. S. Snowdon ;

Town Clerk, AVilliam L. Wilkinson.
ISM.- Chief Burgess, John Fear; Assistant Burgess, Isaac
Reed ; Town Council, John R. Button, William T. Isler,
0. M. Johnston, Samuel Steele, William H. Johnston,


^.'(2"^ ^ ^<^-^^-


Samuel S. Snowdon. Peter Swearer, Peter S. Griffin ; Town
Clerk, William L. Wilkinson.

1S64.— Cliicf Burgess, 0. P. BaUlwin ; Assistant Burgess, Thos.
B. Murphy; Town CouncMl, William H. Johnston, Samuel
Steele, Peter Swearer, G. H. Bowman, A. J. Smith, 0. M.
Johnston, W. B. Skinner, Wm. T. Isler ; Town Clerk, Wil-
liuMi L. Wilkinson.

lS6o.— Chief Burgess, Jason Baker; Assistant Burgess, A. J.
Isler; Town Council, John R. Dutton, William T. Isler, E.
Keiscr, R. J. Patton, P. S. Griffin, Peier Swearer, William
B. Skinner, 6. II. Bowunin, A. J. Smith ; Town Clerk, W.
L. AVilkinson.

ISfiG.— Chief Burgess, Peter S. Griffin ; Assistant Burgess, Wil-
liam Chathind; Town Council, AVilliam T. Isler, A. J.
Smith, W. B. Skinner, R. J. Patton, Erasmus Keiser,
David P. Swearer, B. B. Brashear, G. H. Bowman, J. M.
Abrams; Town Cierk, W. L. Wilkinson.

1S67.— Chief Burgess, Peter S. Griffin; Assistant Burgess,
Jason Baker; Town Council, Erasmus Keiser, R. J. Pat-
ton, B. B. Brashear, Andrew J. Smith, Isaac Jackson,
George AV. Wells, D. P. Swearer, J. M. Abrams; Town
Clerk, W. L. Wilkinson.

1S6S.— Chief Burgess, Peter S. Griffin; Assistant Burgess, Wil-
liam T. Isler; Town Council, Er.asmus Keiser, Robert J.
Patton, Thomas C. Gumuiert, Andrew J. Smith, David P.
Swearer, Isaac Jackson, B. B. Brashear, James M. Abrams;
Town Clerk, W. L. Wilkinson.

1869.— Chief Burgess, Peter S. Griffin; Assistant Burgess,
Puhi^ki F. Swearer ; Town Council, Francis Lee, Geo. F,
Dawson, Samuel 11. Smith, Erasmus Keiser, C.
Gummert, A. J, Smith, R. J. Patton, Isaac Jackson, G.W.
Wells ; Town Clerk, W, L. Wilkinson.

1870.— Town Council, Erasmus Keiser, Samuel H. Smith, Fran-
cis Lee, Osmond M. Johnston, Hunter S. Beall, John G.
Fear, R. J. Patton, George F. Dawson, Thomas C. Gum-
mert; Town Clerk, William L. Wilkinson.

1871.— Chief Burgess, Francis McKernan ; Town Council,
Francis Lee, John G. Fear, 0. M, Johnston, R. J. Patton,
Thomas C. Gummert, William M. Ledwith, E. D. Abrams,
Hunter S. Beall, Samuel II. Smith; Town Clerk, William
L. AVilkinson.

1872.— Chief Burgess, William L. Wilkinson ; Assistant Bur-
gess, N. S. Potts; Town Council, N. S. Potts, A. J. Isler,
John S. Cunningham, Thomas C. Gummert, Hunter S.
Beall, William M. Ledwith, 0. M.Johnston, E. D. Abrams;
Town Clerk, William L. Wilkinson.

1S7.3.— Chief Burgess, William L, AVilkinson ; Assistant Bur-
gess, Williiim Burd ; Town Council, J, D. Armstrong, Eli
Hyatt, John Acklin, E. D. Abrauis, John S. Cunningham,
N. S. Potts, AV. M. Ledwith, A.J. Isler; Town Clerk, Wil-
liam L. Wilkinson.

lS7i.— Chief Burgess, Francis McKernan ; Assistant Burgess,
Peter M. Hunt; Town Council, John K, Dutton, William
U. Johnston, James AV, Jeffries, John Acklin, N. S. Potts,
A. J. Isler, John J. Rothmill, J. D. Armstrong, Eli Hyatt;
Town Clerk, AVilliam L. AVilkinson.

lS7o.— Chief Burgess, NimrodS. Potts ; Town Council, E. Keiser,
J. D. Armstrong, John Acklin, AV, H. Johnston, George
Campbell, John Johnston, Eli D. Abrams, John R. Dutton ;
Secretary of Council, AVilliam L. AVilkinson.

1S76.— Town Council, John R. Dutton, E. D. Abrams, George
Campbell, John Johnston, AVilliam H. Johnston, Adam
Jacobs, Jr., Robert Johnston, Kenney J. Shupe; Seerefary
of Council, AVilliam L. AVilkinson.
1377,- Town Council, George Campbell, John Johnston, Robert
Johnston, Ki.nney J. Shupe, E, D, .Abrams, James L, Bow-

man, AV, H. Johnston, Adam Jacobs, Jr. ; Secretary of
Council, Austin Livingston.

1878.— Chief Burgess, AVilliam L. AVilkinson ; Town Council,
K, J. Shupe, J. L. Bowman, Robert Johnston, Dr. Benja-
min Shoemaker, AVilliam H. Johnston, Fred. S. Chalfant,
George Lenhart, Samuel Steele ; Secretary of Council,
Austin Livingston.

1879.— Chief Burgess, William L, Wilkinson; Assistant Bur-
gess, Samuel Honesty; Town Council, B. Shoemaker,
Samuel Steele, J. R. Dutton, E. D. Abrams, H, AV. Robin-
son, Moses AV right, F. S. Chalfant, William H. Johnston;
Secretary of Council, J. B. Patterson.

ISSO.— Chief Burgess, AV. L. AVilkinson ; Assistant Burgess,
Samuel Honesty; Town Council, H.AV. Robinson, B. Shoe-
maker, F. S. Ch.alfant, J. R. Dutton, W. H. Johnston, E.

D. Abrams, John Johnston, Moses AVright, J. AV. Jeffries;
Secretary of Council, J. B. Patterson.

ISSI.-Chicf Burgess, AV. L. AVilkinson; Assistant Burgess,
Isaac Alexander; Town Council, John K. Dutton, J. AV.
Je.Tiies, John Johnston, Moses AVright, II. AV. Robinson,

E. D. Abrams, Samuel Steele, B. Shoemaker, F. S. Chal-
fant; Secretary of Council, J. B. Patterson.



The late Mr. Goodloe H. Bowman, of Brownsville,
who died Jan. 80, 1876, was of German and Scotch-
Irish e.xtraction. His father, Jacob Bowman, was
born in Washington County, tlieii Frt'dLriek County,
Md., near Hagerstown, Juno, 17i;.'.. In 17.S7 he mar-
ried Isabella Lowry, who was of Sccitch descent, and
was born in County Donegal, Ireland, and came to
America when seventeen years of age. Goodloe
Harper Bowman was the seventh child and third son
of this union, and was born April 20, 1803. He
was reared and educated in Brownsville, and entered
upon active business life as a merchant at about the
age of twenty years, and continued merchandis-
ing, in partnership with his brothers, until 1855,
when he relinquishod the business, and gave his at-
tention principally to the affairs of the Monongahela
Bank of Brownsville, of which bank he was elected
president in 1857, and continued such to the time of
his death, immediately succeeding his elder brother,
James L. Bowman, in the presidency thereof, as the
latter had succeeded his father, Jacob Bowman, who
was the first president of the bank.

Jan. 9, 1840, Mr. Bowman married Miss Jane Cor-
rey Smith, of Reading, Berks Co., Pa,, by whom he
had five children, — Isabella Lowry, James Lowry,
John Howard, Ann Sweitzer, and William Robert.

Mr. Bowman, like his father, was an active member
and supporter of the Protestant Episcopal Church,
and for m^ny years senior warden of Christ Church,
Brownsville. He was in politics a Whig in early life,
and became an ardent Republican, and contributed
liberally to the support of the Union cause during
the late Rebellion.




Capt. Adam Jacobs, of Brownsville, is of German
extraction. His grandfather, Adam Jacobs, emi-
grated from Lancaster County, Pa., at an early day
into Allegheny County, and there carried on farming
on Turtle Creek, near " Braildock's Field," eleven
miles east of Pittsburgh, for several years, and then
moved to Brownsville, where he entered into mer-
chandising, which he conducted until his death,
which occurred in 1818.

He had but one son who lived to maturity, named
after himself, Adam Jacobs, and who was born in
Brownsville, Dec. 3, 1794, and was educated at the
subscription schools and at Washington College, and
became a merchant, and on the 16th of January,
1816, married Eliza Reiley, daughter of Martin Eeiley,
of Bedford, Bedford Co., Pa. He died June 29, 1822,
leaving two children, Adam and Ann Elizabeth, long
since deceased.

Adam, the last referred to, is the subject of our
sketch, and was born Jan. 7, 1817. He received his
early education in the pay schools, and at about six-
teen years of age was apprenticed to G. W. Bowman
to learn copper.smithing, and remained with him four
years. He then went into the business for himself,
and in a year or two afterwards took to steamboating
on the Western rivers, and continued steamboating
until 1847. He was at this time, and had been for
years before, engaged also in building steamboats,
and from 1847 forward prosecuted steamboat-building
vigorously, at times having as many as eight boats in
a year under contract. He built over a hundred and
twenty steamboats before practically retiring from the
business about 1872, since which time he has, how-
ever, built about five boats for the Pittsburgh, Browns-
ville and Geneva Packet Company, and other con-
tracts. Capt. Jacobs was also engaged in merchan-
dising, with all tjie rest of his active business, from
1843 to 1865, and may be said to be still merchan-
dising, for he has a store at East Riverside.

Since about 1872 he has spent his time mostly in
Brownsville in the winters and at his country resi-
dence, " East Riverside," Luzerne township, on the
Monongahela River, during the summer seasons.

On the 22d of February, 1838, Mr. Jacobs married
Miss Ann Snowdon (born in England in 1816), a
daughter of John and Mary Smith Snowdon, who came
from England and settled in Brownsville in 1818,
where Mr. Snowdon soon after started the business of
engine-building, and carried it on till disabled by old
age. Mr. and Mrs. Snowdon both died in advanced
years, and were buried in the Brownsville Cemetery,
where a fine monument marks the place of their re-

Mr. and Mrs. Jacobs have had ten children, eight
of whom are living, — Mary, wife of William Park-
liill ; Adam, Jr., married to Laura Myers, of Canton,
Ohio; Catharine, wife of S. S. Graham; John N.,

married to Sarah Colvin ; Caroline S., wife of John
H. Bowman ; Anna, wife of Joseph L. McBirney, of
Chicago, 111.; Martin Reiley, now residing in Col-
orado ; and George D.


George Hogg, only son of John and Mary Crisp
Hogg, was born in Cramlington, in the county of
Northumberland, England, on the 22d day of June,
1784. When about twenty years of age he came to
Brownsville, in 1804, where he established his home,
and as a merchant created a very large and lucrative

On March 7, 1811, he married Mary A., oldest
daughter of Judge Nathaniel Breading, of Tower
Hill Farm, Luzerne township, Fayette Co. Of the
marriage were born the following-named children :
George E., Nathaniel B., John T., Mary A. (who
married Felix R. Brunot) ; Elizabeth E. (who mar-
ried William S. Bissell) ; and James B., lost on the

By the integrity of his character and strict atten-
tion to business, George Hogg was eminently success-
ful, and secured the esteem of the communities in
which he lived. Though a great lover of hi^ adopted
country, he did not cease to be an Englishman, and
always looked back with pleasure to the good old
laws and institutions of his native land.

In May, 1843, he removed to Allegheny City, and
died there Dec. 5, 1849, in the sixty-sixth year of his
age, in the house which he bought in an unfinished
state on removing to that place, and which he com-
pleted, and wherein he spent the remainder of his

During his business career he, with his uncle, Wil-
liam Hogg, established large business houses in Pitts-
burgh, Pa., and about fifteen different establishments
of merchandise and commission-houses in Ohio, to-
gether with a forwarding-house at Sandusky City, in
that State, and to which were attached a number of
vessels running on Lake Erie, and a line of boats on
the Ohio Canal.

Mr. Hogg, with the co-operation of others, built
the bridge at Brownsville over the Monongahela
River, and was also one of the original stockholders
of the Monongahela Navigation Improvement Com-
pany, through whose enterprise the great body of the
coal which is mined along the Monongahela River,
and exported, finds its way to New Orleans. He also
erected, in 1828, the Brownsville Glass- Works, and
supervised their operations till 1847, when he dis-
posed of them.

Mr. Hogg was confirmed in his youth according to
the usages of the Established Church of England,
and through life was a consistent, devote<l, and liberal
member of that communion.

A monument to his memory, executed jointly by
the sculptor, Henry K. Brown, of New York, and the






'^^^il^^;-*^ -^tc



9^^-/ ^^^




sculptor Piatti, — a lofty plinth surmounted by a life-
size figure of the Angel of the Resurrection, — was
erected in Allegheny Cemetery, near Pittsburgh, Pa.,
in 1851, and located near an elegant cenotaph, by
Piatti, memorial of James B. Hogg, above referred
to, the son of Mr. George Hogg, and who went down
with the ocean steamer " Arctic," which foundered at
sea near Cape Race, Sept. 27, 1854.


William Hogg was born June 17, 1755, in the
county of Northumberland, England. While quite
young he entered the marine service, from which he
soon retired, and was soon thereafter drafted into the
British military service, but deserted at Charleston,
S. C. Working his way to Philadelphia, he found
employment for about a year, when he concluded to
seek his fortune in the great unknown West. In
178G he first visited Brownsville, at that time the
point where the military road reached the first navi-
gable stream of the West, whereby the emigrants of
the East and the traders could by boats reach the far-
distant West. Here they encamped until they could
build their boats and procure supplies of ironware
and provisions sufficient to start them in their West-
ern homes. Mr. Hogg was pleased with the prospects
of Brownsville as a place of business. He returned
to Philadelphia to lay in a small stock of merchandise,
which was the beginning of his eminently successful
career as a merchant. During the following year he
again visited Brownsville, intending to go to Ken-
tucky, wliither the tide of eraigr.ation was moving.
He concluded, however, to make this place his home,
and here, during the eleven years he was in business,
he acquired what was then thought to be a very large
fortune. He retired from active business in 1798, and
thereafter in partnership with George Hogg, who came
from England in ISO-t, planted many branches of
business throughout Ohio, and purchased large bodies I
of government lands.

While thus fortunate in business he established for
himself a high character for integrity over a large
region of country. He was singularly modest and
unobtrusive in all his ways, so much so that he at-
tracted attention rather than escaped it by the sim-
plicity of his life and manners.

Mr. Hogg, in connection with others, organized the
Monongahela Bank of Brownsville, as early as 1812, !
under articles of association, wliich in 1814 were ex- I
changed for a charter under the Commonwealth.
Under the State charter and the National Banking
laws this bank still has a vigorous existence, and is
probably the oldest institution west of the Allegheny [
Mountains, and was for very many years the only in-
stitution of the kind over a very large region of '
country. |

Mr. Hogg, Mr. Jacob Bowman, Dr. Wheeler, and '
George Hogg were equally efficient at a very early '

day in organizing at Brownsville aft Episcopal Church
and erecting a large and substantial building for its

William Hogg took great interest in the cause of
education at all times, but an incident exemplifying
this fact, and of historical interest as well, may here
be cited. Somewhere about 1828 or 1830, when Ken-
yon College, now at Gambler, Knox Co., Ohio, had
been projected, but yet lacked a site, Hon. Henry
Clay, of Kentucky, and Bishop Chase, of Ohio, visited
Brownsville and negotiated with Mr. Hogg for eight
thousand acres of land belonging to him, and which
he, in consideration that an institution of learning
was to be erected thereon, deeded to them as trustees
for $2.25 per acre, though it was held in the market
at a much higher price, and then presented them be-
sides, for use of the college, with S6000 of the pur-

At the age of about forty he married Mary Stevens,
a native of Bucks County, Pa. They both died in the
eighty-sixth year of their age, she on Nov. 11, 1840,
he on the 27th of January, 1841, and their remains
were interred in the cemetery of the Episcopal
Churcli. Over their remains their nephew, George
Hogg, erected a monument of native sandstone, a
noble structure for the times.


Among the venerable men of Bridgeport, highly
esteemed by all who know him, and identified with the
interests of that borough an<l its twin-sister, Browns-
ville, by overhalfa century'^ j(-iil( lice ;iimI ;iriive busi-
ness life within their limits, and i>;irliriputing in the
best measures, well performing tlie duties and digni-
fiedl}' bearing the responsibilities of good citizenship
therein, watchful ever for the weal and social good or-
der of the place where has so long been his home, is
Judge Thomas Duncan. He is of Scotch-Irish extrac-
tion. His f;\ther, Arthur Duncan, emigrated from
County Donegal, Ireland, about 1793, to America, and
found his way into Fayette County as a soldier in the
service of the United States among the troops sent
hither by the government to suppress the Whiskey In-
surrection. After the troops were di.sbanded he settled
in Franklin township, near Upper Middletown (thisn
known as " Plnmsuck"), Menallen township, and mar-
riri] So]iliiu Wharton, daughter of Arthur Wharton, of
Franklin township, but a native of England, who held
a large tract of land in that township, and was a man
of strong individuality. Mr. and Mrs. Arthur Duncan
passed the greater portion of their lives in U|)per
Middletown, but Mrs. Duncan died about 1845, in
Pittsburgh, to which place the family had removed,
and Mr. Duncan, about 1850, in Moundsville, Va., at
the residence of one of his daughters, Mrs. Nancy

Mr. and Mrs. Duncan were the parents of ten



cliildren, the secrfnd in number of whom is Judge
Thomas Duncan, who was born in Franklin town-
ship, Aug. 22, 1807. He received his early education
in the Thorn Bottom school-house, in those days
often pompously or ironically dubbed "The Thorn
Bottom Seminary," on Buck Run, in his native town-
ship. During his boyhood he wrought more or less
in the Plumsock Rolling-Mill, and at eighteen years
of age was apprenticed to a cabinet-maker, Thomas
Hatfield, an expert nii-chanie, with whom he re-
mained three years as im api'iuiitice and three more
as a partner. He thou romnveil to Bridgeport, where
he has ever since resided, carrying on as his principal
business that in which he first engaged.

Judge Duncan has always taken an active part in
public affairs. He was a member of the first board
of school directors in liridgeuort chosen under the
present law organizing the common schools, and
•earnestly advocated the enactment of the law long
before it was made. He has frequently been a mem-
ber of the Common Council, and several times burgess
of Bridgeport. He has also taken a prominent part
as a Democrat in the politics of the county, was
county commissioner from 1841 to 1843, both in-
clusive, and was elected in 1851 associate judge of
Fayette County for a period of five years, and re-
elected in the fall of 185lj for a like term, and fulfilled
the duties of his oflice throughout both terms.

In 1837, Judge Duncan joined the Masonic order,
uniting with Brownsville Lodge, No. 60, and has
filled all the offices of the lodge, and is a member of
Brownsville Chapter. He is also a member of St.
Outer's Commandery, No. 7, of Brownsville, and has
been a member of Brownsville Lodge, No. 51, of the
Order of Odd-Fellows, since 1834. Judge Duncan
has also been a member of the Methodist Episcopal
Church since the last-named year.

In May, 1829, he married Priscilla Stevens, daughter
of Dr. Benjamin Stevens (if Fniontown, whose father,
Benjamin Stevens, wh.i iann.- to Fayette County from
Jlaryland, was also a pliy:,ician. Mrs. Duncan died
in February, 1873, at tlie age of sixty-six years.

Judge and Mrs. Duncan became the parents of five
children, three of whom are living,— Mrs. Elizabeth
Wcjrrell, Dr. W. S. Duncan, both of Bridgeport, and
Thomas J. Duncan, a lawyer practicing his profession
in Washington, Pa.

of Ji

he be


W. S. Duncan, of Bridgeport, is the son
dge Thomas Duncan, of the same borough, a
iphical sketch of whom immediately precedes
ketch. Dr. Duncan was born Jlay 24, 1834;
icre the writer may quite as properly as any-

else note the fact tliat the date of his birth is
iilv tail or item of the following biographical
1 wliirh the doctor has indei)endently furnished,
ing decidedly averse, as he expresses it, to coun-

tenancing any " representation of himself in such
manner as shall seem to have been suggested in whole
or in part by myself" (himself), or " through favor-
able fiicts which, it will be obvious, were furnished by
myself." So the interviewer was advised to refer to
others, and if there are found any errors of opinion
or statement in this sketch they must be attributed to
the w^riter's sources of information.

Dr. Duncan merits more emphatic notice in a work
of this kind than is usually accorded to the living of
any profession or vocation, for he occupies a place
not only in the front rank of the physicians of Fay-
ette County. He is a very careful and comprehen-
sive investigator, and a progressive man, keeping
pace with the advance in medicine and its allied
sciences by the only means feasible and practi-
cable, especially to a country physician at a dis-
tance from the colleges, lecture-rooms, and hospitals,
namely, books. The caller-in at Dr. Duncan's office,
though he come from the city, where the best pri-
vate medical libraries exist, is surprised at the ex-
tent of the doctor's library, which contains the most
valuable standard medical works of the past, and is
richly supplied with the most approved works newly
issued in this country and Europe. Probably not a
score of physicians in such cities as New York or
Philadelphia individually possess libraries comparable
in value to that of Dr. Duncan, and it is probable
that out of all the other medical libraries in Fayette
County not one-half as many separate works, or
works by different authors, could be gleaned as are
contained in his. Medical books are just as much a
positive necessity for the integral understanding and
scientific practice of medicine as are good sound
"horse sense," an excellent fundamental education in
medical science, prudence, etc., which are too apt to
be supposed all that a physician needs. He must
keep up with the advancement of medical science
if he would be truly successful and great, and he
should be unwilling to be le.s.s. Books are practically
his only source of information. No one physician's
"experience," tliough it cover a half-century of
practice, and countless cases of experiment and spec-
ulation, can afford any considerable information or
"scientific facts" in comparison with what books
supply, made up as they are out of the experiences
and studies of armies of doctors and professors of
medical science. The sick everywhere should con-
sider these things, and the phj'sician of large practice,
it may be, but who is too indolent to read, or too
penurious to provide himself with books, or he who
is too poor, it may be, to be well equipped with books,
should be shunned ; the former as a dangerous, spec-
ulative empiric who indolently "sets himself up"
above the ripest books and the best philosophers, and

Online LibraryFranklin EllisHistory of Fayette County, Pennsylvania : with biographical sketches of many of its pioneers and prominent men → online text (page 104 of 193)