Stillman Carter Larkin.

The pioneer history of Meigs County online

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children and numerous descendants.

Noah Ogden, a son of Alvin Ogden, Sr., was born March
16th, 1811. He married Dorcas Graham and settled in Salem
township and had four children, and numerous descendants.
He died in 1890.

Alvin Ogden, Sr., died January 4th, 1867, aged nearly
ninety-two years. He was a son of a Revolutionary soldier,
himself a pioneer of Meigs county. When he died he left ten
children, 129 grandchildren, and seven great-grandchildren.
No race suicide in his posterity.

The foregoing sketch is copied from a history of the Ogden
family, as a part of that interesting narrative published in the
"Telegraph," January 28th, 1898. S. C. Larkin.

Shubael Nobles and family came from Tremont township,
Rutland county, Vermont, to Marietta in 1801. Then to the
Joel Higley farm in 1804, and finally to his own farm in the
northwest corner of Section No. 15, in Rutland, in 1805.

Pioneer History of MeiCs County 57

Mrs. Nobles before marriage was Elizabeth Post. They
had three sons and six daughters. Mr. Nobles was a tanner
by trade, also a shoemaker. Charles F. Nobles, a son, was
a blacksmith. He married Sarah Fanny Winn in October,
1818. She was a daughter of Abraham Winn, and was born
July 24th, 1795, in Ontario county. New York. She was a
noble woman, with great energy. They reared a large family
of sons and daughters. Mr. Charles F. Nobles died in 1870.
Mrs. Nobles died November 24th, 1890, aged ninety-five years,
four months.

Lewis Nobles, son of Shubael Nobles, married Betsy
Strausburg. He was noted as an ingenious mechanic. He
died May 26th, 1887, aged sixty-seven years, eleven months,
I seven days. His wife died March 1st, 1897, in her seventy-
sixth year of age.

Osmar Nobles was never married, but lived on the old farm

Silas Nobles went to Indiana, married and died there.

Abigail Nobles, daughter of Shubael Nobles, was married
to Phineas Matthews, of Gallia county. Julia married Jacob
A. Winn, lived in Rutland, and died in 1882, at the age of
eighty-five years. Eliza was married to Jacob Swisher and
'lived in Gallia county.

Esther Nobles was married to Abel Chase, of Rutland, Ohio.
She was born March 26th, 1808. Eunice Nobles died March
17th, 1878, aged seventy-eight years. Mary Nobles died in
Rutland, aged sixty-one years. Shubael Nobles, Sr., died in
1854, aged ninety-one years. His wife died in 1855, aged
eighty-eight years.

William Parker, second, was born in Newburyport, Massa-

|li;husetts, July 4th, 1775, and came to Marietta with his father,

William Parker, first, in 1798. He married Betsy Wyatt,

laughter of Deacon Joshua Wyatt, of Athens county, May

3th, 1802, and they came to Rutland, Ohio, in 1804, and

58 Pioneer History of Meigs County

settled on a farm, which has been owned and occupied by a
Parker for more than one hundred years. (

The children of William Parker, second, and his wife were : ',
Eliza, who was married to Samuel Halliday, and lived in Meigs
county. They had a family of sons and daughters ; Alexander
died when a child; William Halliday; Jane was Mrs. Rob-
bins; Samuel Halliday married Elizabeth Remington, of
Pomeroy ; Eliza, Henry, Thomas, Edwin, and Mary left Meigs
county with their parents in 1850.

William Parker, third, married Lovina Stout. Their chil- j
dren were: William Parker, fourth, Mary, Ida, Sophronia,
Edwin Parker, Barton, and Sarah — Mrs. Green, who died
early, leaving one daughter. Edwin married and lives in
Cincinnati. Ida Parker was a successful teacher in the public
schools in Middleport, Ohio. Two brothers and two unmarried
sisters live together in the homestead. ^

Silas Parker, son of William Parker, second, studied medi-
cine and went to the West when quite a young man.

Mary Parker was married to Buckingham Cooley, who died
early, leaving a widow and one daughter. Mrs. Cooley was
married afterwards to William Bartlett, of Athens, Ohio.

Sarah E. Parker became the wife of Tobias A. Plantz, Esq.,
and lived in Pomeroy. They had two children, Mary E.
Plants who died young, and George Wyatt Plantz, banker and
prominent citizen of Pomeroy for many years, identified with
all good enterprises for the prosperity of the town. He mar-
ried Mary G. Daniel, daughter of H. G. Daniel, banker and an
esteemed business man of Pomeroy. They have one son, who
bears the family name, Wyatt Garfield Plantz, and is one of ^
the bankers — "First Citizens Bank," of Pomeroy.

John Wyatt Parker, son of William Parker, second, and his ',
wife, was born in Rutland. He married Eliza McQuigg, and i
lived in Gallipolis for several years, was auditor of Gallia
county, but removed to Dubuque, Iowa.

Pioneer History of Meigs County 59

Daniel Parker, son of William Parker, second, and his wife,
yas born October 22d, 1809. He married Catharine E. Gil-
espie, of Dayton, Ohio, in 1847. They had three sons:
jeorge G., Daniel Herbert, and Frank H. Parker, all noted
•hysicians and specialists in surgery. Mr. Daniel Parker owned
,nd occupied the homestead, and died January 19th, 1893,
ged eighty-three years, two months, twenty-eight days. Mrs.
'arker died in 1908, in her eighty-fourth year, a woman of
are accomplishments, one who never grew old.

This Parker homestead is occupied by Dr. Frank Parker, the
inly surviving member of his father's family.

A party of Indians came to Rutland sometime in the inter-
al between 1804 and 1808. The date is not as certain as
;lie incident. It was a custom in those days when preaching
|y a minister was only occasional, to observe the Sabbath
,y services at the home of some family in the neighborhood.
)ne Sunday when the meeting was in progress, Indians were
een looking through the cracks of the door, and between the
)gs. Immediately consternation prevailed, the women cry-
ig and wringing their hands, while some of the men went to
le door, shook hands with them and found them to be friendly,
'he Indians said they wanted "johnny-cake," which fortunately
'^as at hand, so the request was granted and the Indians de-
arted. Mr. Milo Higley has written a very good song on
)hnny-cake, and we venture to copy two stanzas relating to
16 foregoing narrative.

"It was Sunday in that early day.

And all had gone to church
In the house of Mr. Larkin,

God's holy book to search.
Around the fireside they met,

A blessing to partake,
While from the hearth came up the fume

Of steaming johnny-cake.

60 Pioneer History of Meigs County

"While thus in solemn worship there

The women gave a scream,
For through a crack in the cabin wall

A red-skin's eyes were seen.
The stately deacons rose and asked,

'Why this disturbance make?'
In Indian language they replied,

'We want some johnny-cake !' "






This visit was the last one of the Indians in the vicinity o\,iry
Rutland. attei


A meeting preliminary to a call for the organizing of a
pioneer society met at the court house in Pomeroy in October
1876, Mr. H. B. Smith, chairman, Aaron Stivers, secretary.^
Those present were Stillman C. Larkin, Aaron Torrence,|g?ii
Nehemiah Bicknell, Silas Jones, Mrs. H. B. Smith, Mrs. S. C. eas
Miles, and Mrs. E. L. Bicknell. They met and proceeded tojiip.
name a committee to announce the time and place for a regu-jl'a^
lar organization of the Meigs County Pioneer Society, and to'
prepare a constitution, with suitable by-laws, for the future'
conduct of the society. They reported at the next meeting,
which was held in the court house at Pomeroy, November Istjliosf
1876, pursuant to the call of the last meeting.

President Stillman C. Larkin in the chair, and Aaron
Stivers, secretary. The object of the meeting was stated by
the president and then the report and constitution was read
and adopted.

"In view of the fact that all of the first settlers of Meig^
county have passed away, and most of their children are also
gone, and that time is effacing the mementos and monuments
that have marked the only history of our county, we art
admonished that unless immediate steps are taken to preserve|esai
the remembrance of those interesting events they will be for;
gotten and lost. In order therefore to recover and preserve




Pioneer History of Meigs County 61

id record the past and current history of our county for the
;nefit and satisfaction of our present population, as well as
ose whom it may interest when time shall have removed us
ho now record these events, this society is formed and for its
gulation have adopted the following constitution :
"Article 1. This society shall be known as the Meigs
Dunty Pioneer Society.

"Art. 2. The object of this society shall be the promotion of
cial intercourse, the collection and preservation of the his-
jry of the early settlers of Meigs county, and such other
atters of interest as may be declared by the society to be
(Drthy of record and preservation.

] 'Art. 3. Any person who has been twenty years a resident
T Meigs county, and is over fifty years of age, or who is the
.'ife of a member, may become a member of this society by
Vning this constitution, and all male members paying into its
tasury five cents, and fifty cents annually during member-
ip. Residents of adjoining counties may become members
■■ a vote of the society.

"Art. 4. The officers of the society shall consist of a
esident, vice-president, treasurer, corresponding secretary,
nj ! d recording secretary, and an executive committee of five,
lio shall hold their respective offices for the term of one year,
d until their successors are elected and installed.
"Art. 5. The officers shall be elected annually by ballot on
e day of the annual meeting, and a majority of the members
esent and voting shall be necessary to a choice.
"Art. 6. The annual meeting of this society shall be held on
e second Thursday in August of each year. The president
executive committee may call a meeting at discretion.
"Art. 7. All money must be paid to the recording secretary,
lo shall pay the same to the treasurer, taking his receipt for
e same.

'Art. 8. The treasurer shall deposit the funds of the so-
-ty in some solvent bank in the name of the society, and


62 Pioneer History of Meigs County

pay the same out on the order of the recording secretary, as
directed by the executive committee, unless otherwise ordered
by the society.

"Art. 9. A majority of the members present at an annual ,4 P
meeting shall determine the place of the next annual meeting ivei
thereafter to be holden.

"Art. 10. The executive committee with the two secretaries l«n
shall give the necessary notice, and make arrangements for thej^ve
annual meeting of the society.

"Art. 11. The constitution may be altered or amended at
any annual meeting by a vote of two-thirds of all the members [ati

The Signers of the Constitution.

Horace Holt, Mary Lasher, N. Bicknell, Sarah C. Miles,
Benjamin Smith, P. Pennington, Samuel Bradbury, Samuel|,
Halliday, Sarah Murphy, Samuel S. Paine, Mary Simms,
Sophrina Stivers, Silas Jones, W. Stivers, John Erwin, Electa
McQuigg, Aaron Thompson, Sarah F. Nobles, Aaron Stivers,
Persis O. Cooper, T. A. Plants, Stillman C. Larkin, S. Bos-
worth, W. A. Barringer, John Ruble, L. Smith, Geo. W.
Cooper, W. B. Smith, W. B. Pennington, John C. Hysell.

The society then proceeded to choose officers and the fol
lowing were elected :

Stillman C. Larkin, president; John C. Hysell, vice-presi-
dent; H. B. Smith, treasurer; Aaron Stivers, recording secre-
tary ; Geo. W. Cooper, corresponding secretary ; Samuel Brad-
bury, Silas Jones, Washington Stivers, Aaron Thompson, and
John Ervin, executive committee. ^

It was then determined by a vote of the society to hold the
next annual meeting in Middleport. i

The meeting then adjourned. '

Stillman C. Larkin, President.
Aaron Stivers, Secretary.


Pioneer History of Meigs County 63

Benjamin Smith, who was born in Salisbury township in

804, gave some items, related interesting incidents of early

imes, and promised if life and health permitted to prepare

, paper for the annual meeting, as his father and grandfather

tvere among the first early settlers in the county.

John C. Hysell gave incidents of early history and con-
aented to write an article from his knowledge of pioneer
Samuel Halliday, who came from Scotland in 1819, and was
al||ounty auditor for twenty-three years, expressed his gratifi-
cation at this moment, and made some very appropriate re-
larks in relation to it. He also promised to furnish a paper
ontaining a history of events in the county, and observations
n the conduct of county affairs.

[ T. A. Plantz spoke of a history prepared by a son of Daniel
arker, who lived in Clermont county, that included valuable
'iformation of the earliest settlements in Meigs county, and
e would secure a copy for this pioneer society.
H. B. Smith offered the following resolution, which was
lopted : "Resolved, that each member of this society be re-
vested to furnish in a written form, at the next annual meet-
:g, such information as shall be within the meaning and
)irit of the constitution of this society, and that T. A.
lantz be appointed a committee to procure the Parker

A paper was filed containing an account of the settlement
N. Bicknell in 1820, in Lebanon township.

By Luther Hecox.

Thurman Hecox and family moved from the Whetstone, New
3rk, to Newbury in Ohio, between the Big Hocking and
ttle Hocking rivers in August, 1800, and the same year
5ved up the Hocking river four miles into Troy township.


64 Pioneer History of Meigs County

The next year, 1801, they planted corn on the George Ackley
farm and one day when they were hoeing corn they killed five
rattlesnakes, not until Mr. Hecox had been bitten by one.
They had to go up the Muskingum river four miles above
Marietta to a floating mill in summer; in winter they lived
on boiled corn and turnips. Their meat was venison. The
nearest neighbor was Mr. Humphrey, who lived on what is
known as Waterman's hill. Another neighbor was Mr, Sut-
ton, a trapper. In 1803 they moved to the middle branch of
Shade river, to No. 4, in Troy township. They moved with
an ox sled and two yoke of oxen, the first team that ever went
through Tupper's Plains. David Daily drove the hogs, and
as they tired out he had to camp in the woods with them to
keep the wolves from killing them. David Daily was a Revo-
lutionary soldier. Nathan Burris was the first family to
settle on the middle branch of Shade river, one mile above
where Levi Stedman built his first mill. Solomon Burris, an
uncle to Nathan Burris, lived there. Mr. Longworth and Mr,
Stone settled on Congress land, and Jacob Cowdery settled
on the middle branch, at the mouth of the west branch of I
Shade river, above Stedman's mill. Levi Stedman and Peter
Grow lived in Gallia county, half a mile below the line be-
tween the two counties. Afterward they got one section an-
nexed to Athens county, which then ran no farther than the
Orange township line, with the exception of one section which
belonged to Gallia county. This line runs east to the Ohio
river, near the mouth of a small stream called Indian run.
Samuel Branch came next with his family and located on the
east side of the middle branch of Shade river, and Ezra Hoyt
came about the same time. Jacob Rice settled on the west
side of the west branch in 1806. Mr. Kingsbury took land on
the first fork of the west branch of Shade river, which is known
as Kingsbury, after the name of the first settler. He was a
brother-in-law to Levi Stedman. The first organization of
militia was in 1805. Thurman Hecox was elected captain

Pioneer History of Meigs County 65

and Joseph Guthrie first Heutenant. He lived in No. 5. Jacob
Halsey and a man named Lasley Hved on the middle branch
of Shade river. They hauled grain to the mouth of Hocking,
there loaded in canoes and pushed up to the floating mill on
the Muskingum river above Marietta, a trip that took nine
days to go and return. There were no stores nearer than
Marietta or Gallipolis. Prices were high — sixty-two and one-
half cents for prints, the same for brown sheeting, and tea v^ras
two dollars a pound. Bears, panthers, wolves and deer were
plenty, also small game. Wild turkeys were seen in flocks of
hundreds. Mr. Hecox killed a bear that weighed four hundred
pounds when dressed. William and Jeptha Hecox were in
the woods and treed a half-grown bear. Jeptha ran home to
get an ax, or a gun, and left William and the dogs to watch
the bear. While he was gone the bear came down the tree,
the dogs seized him, and William took a pine knot and struck
him in the head and killed him. Levi Stedman had his hog
pen near his house and one night he was away and a bear
came into the pen to get a hog, but Mrs. Stedman threw a
firebrand at him from the window and frightened him away.
Cyrus Cowdery killed an elk, the last one seen in these parts.
John Sloan was hunting deer one day when his dogs treed a
panther. He shot and wounded it, when it came at him ; the
dogs caught hold, and Sloan declares that he "shot the animal
nine times before he killed it." In the year 1804 Mr. Hecox
bought a pair of hand-mill stones, on which they ground wheat
and corn, and sifted it through a buckskin sieve, Levi Sted-
man built a log mill on what is now Chester, and put Mr.
Hecox's hand-mill stones in his mill until he could get larger
j ones. These pioneers had to go to the Scioto river to obtain
salt, a journey of seventy miles, and paid two dollars a
bushel for the salt. There was only a horse-path for travel,
and carried by pack horses the salt, the party camping out at
night. Later roads were made for the use of carts and oxen.
They went to Marietta for all mail matter until 1812. There.

66 Pioneer History of Meigs County

was a mail route opened from Parkersburg to Point Pleasant
running through by Stedman's Mill. Levi Stedman was ap-
pointed Postmaster, he was also the first Justice of the Peace,
and Thurman Hecox was Constable. These men filled these
offices for a number of years, without opposition. Levi Sted-
man opened a store, carried on farming, ran a saw and grist
mill, kept a tavern, and owned a distillery. Wool had to be
carded, spun and woven by hand, flax was raised, and manu-
factured into cloth, for wearing apparel. Some men had
suits of dressed deerskin. The first preaching was at Nathan
Burris' house, and next by Rev. Eli Stedman at Samuel
Branch's. Afterwards they had occasional preaching by dif-
ferent denominations. In 1820, Elisha Rathburn was the
preacher, and a goodly number experienced religion and
united with the Bible Christian Church. The first school-
house was built on Samuel Branch's land, and the first teacher
there was a Miss Pratt, who lived on Pratt's fork, a mile up
the river. William and Benjamin Bellows were settlers in
this neighborhood, until WiUiam sold out to Caleb Cart-
wright, a preacher of the Seventh Day Baptist,

The name of Stedman occurs so frequently that an ex-
planation is in order. From Walker's History of Athens, we
take the statement: "Alexander Stedman, a native of Ver-
mont, and by profession an artisan, settled in Rome township
in 1804. In 1805, he was appointed a Judge of the Court of
Common Pleas, and served in that position several years.
One of his sons was Eli Stedman, a minister. Another son
was Levi Stedman, a Commissioner of Athens county, and for
a short time in Meigs. Bial Stedman married Sally Foster in
1811," and had sons and daughters. Capt. Julius C. Stedman,
a son of Bial Stedman, was a soldier in the Mexican War,
and a soldier in 116th Ohio V. I. from the first to the close of
the Civil War. He always had a home in or near Athens,

Pioneer History of Meigs County 67


Long Bottom is situated in the eastern part of Meigs
county. The first settlers were Thomas Rairdon and the
Cohnans, probably before 1800, as the date is not positively
known. William Buffington bought land in 1808, and several
families came about that time, the Whitesides, Collins' and
others. Thomas Rairdon built the first grist mill in 1815.
|i The first postofiice was kept on the Warner farm in 1815.
Robert Collins, Postmaster. The first Methodist Church was
built in 1844. The first Christian Church in 1847, and the
first store was kept by John Roberts and William Hicks in
1839, near the mouth of Forked Run. J. H. Stewart came to
Long Bottom in 1830. The leading business of the place has
been the working up of the splendid forest into staves, and
the manufacture of various kinds of casks. In 1819, this
locality was an almost unbroken forest."

Lebanon township was formed in 1813, taken out of Letart
township, and possesses a greater river boundary than any
other township in Meigs county. It was a dense forest at the
time of its organization. Trees of great size, and timber of the
finest quality, covered the rich bottom lands of the Ohio river
and the creeks of Old Town and Groundhog, while the hills
bore the best yellow pine and spruce for lumber. The sugar
maple, hickory, black oak and white oak, poplar, beech and
sycamore excelled in size and quality any forests of Europe.
The black walnut, white walnut and wild cherry were favorite
woods for the manufacture of furniture, and for inside work of
the best houses. Black walnut and cherry were used particu-
larly for the making of coffins in those early days. So these
trees of Lebanon had special attractions to the commercial
eyes of later emigrants. More than one farm was paid for by
the cordwood cut and sold to steamboats for fuel, when steam-

68 Pioneer History of Meigs County

boats first ran on the Ohio river. Besides the trees, were
growths of wild fruits, crab apples, red and black hawes, rasp-
berries and blackberries, and two or three varieties of grapes,
and not least in profusion, beauty or lusciousness, was the pa-
paw. There were herbs and roots used for medicinal purposes,
and collected to sell for money. Ginseng, snakeroot and nerv-
ine, or ladies' slipper, grew in abundance in the shade of the
great trees. Two remarkable trees are worthy of notice. One,
a monster sycamore on Old Town creek not far from the mouth
of the stream. It was hollow, and made a home for a family
once, afterwards served as a stable for horses. The other tree
was a sycamore, and hollow, and stood on the bottom land of
N. Bicknell's farm in Great Bend.

Dr. Philip Lauck and Rev. Ezra Grover came from Eastern
Virginia with their families in 1813 and bought a fine tract of
land in Lebanon township, on the Ohio river bottom. Rev. Gro-
ver was a Methodist preacher, but was superannuated from the
Baltimore Conference. Dr. Lauck was his son-in-law by mar-
riage and had an extensive and successful practice, which took
him away from home much of the time, so that the care of his
growing family, and of the making of a farm out of the wilder-
ness developed upon Father Grover and Mrs. Lauck. Rev.
Grover was a good preacher, a zealous Christian and an able
defender of the faith, as held by Methodism. They opened
their door for public preaching, and many a weary itinerant
was cheered by their hospitality. Dr. Lauck died compara-
tively young, leaving a widow and six children. The sons,
Isaac, Ezra, and Simon; the daughters, Mary Ann, Hannah
and Elizabeth. Isaac Lauck married Nancy Hall, and Ezra
Lauck married her sister, Rachel Hall, of Old Town. They
moved to Missouri many years ago. Mary Ann Lauck died
of consumption in early womanhood, Hannah Lauck married
Nicholas Richardson, son of a Scotch family who came to
Sterling Bottom. Elizabeth Lauck was married to James

Pioneer History of Meigs County 69

Amsden, a highly respected man, who took charge of the
farm, and the family after the death of Father Grover in 1835.

In 1811, a company of Scotch from Glasgow, Scotland,
through the influence of Nahum Ward of the Ohio Company's
Land Purchase, emigrated to Ohio, and settling on Sterling
Bottom, named for the "land of the heather." George Rich-
ardson, the Pattersons, McCoys and others. Dissatisfaction,
discontent, homesickness and death served to break up and
scatter the company. Only Mr. George Richardson remained,
and he was a merchant and capable of adapting himself to the
primitive conditions of the country. Mrs. Richardson was a
native of Antigua, one of the British West Indies, and had
inherited slaves and plantation interests, but England freed the

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