South Bloomingville History

Dust in the Attic

Early 1900's

South Bloomingville Early 1900's

This is another view of the town. The Church in the upper
left corner was located in what was called East Town.
In its early days there were houses, stores and mills in East Town.
This picture is another from the collection owned by Raymond "Turk"
Shaw, and donated by Damon Shaw.
My sincere thanks for the donation which helps document the
history of Early South Bloomingville.

South Bloomingville History


    The small Town of South Bloomingville, which was once a bustling village, is located at the corners of State Route's 56 and 664, in Benton Township of Hocking County, Ohio.  The Town of Bloomingville  was platted  out in 1836 by, and on land owned  by  John Chilcote who was born in Baltimore County, Maryland in 1787 and came to Ohio in the 1820's with wife Hester A.. John And Hester came into
Hocking County in the mid 1830's.
    Early Land and Tax records of the community list  some of the early pioneers of 1838, among which were: Aaron & Benjamin Allen; Thomas Burns; John & Samuel Chilcote; John, Elias & Robert Coldwell; Henry, Frederick & Isaac   Corrick; Hezikiah Crownover; Moses and David Dawson; John & Lenae
Dorman; J. & David Dresbach; Christian, Joseph & George Eby; Peter Edwards; Isaac & Thomas Elder; Benjamin Featherolf; William Francisco; Robert Glen; Andrew, Frederick, Jacob & Jonathan Huffman; James Justice; Jacob Karshner; William Large; John D. Loomis; Hester Long; Thomas & David Loyd; Henry May, John Mullat; Jacob Myers; Peter Pence; James & Harrison Shaw; Andrew Reed; Aaron, George, Enoch & Lewis Starkey; David Strouser; George Teets; Peter Tharp; James & William Wine and Frederick Wolfe.
     The First Election was held in the home of Christian Eby.
     In 1839 Tax Records lists newly arrivals into the community being: Rueben Ashton; James Burgoon; Isaac Cooper; Jacob Keller; James Mock; James Reynolds; George & George Jr. Springer; John Tracy

and Jaden D. Williams. In 1840 Census records show new additions to the community which included: William Agler; Nathaniel Barton; David Beck; Eli Bennett; Elijah Brown; James Ellis; William J. Ford;  John Hamilton; William Henry; George Horley; Thomas Johnson; Joshua Lemon; Robert & William Lindsay; Aaron Mattox; Allen Mills;Linden Newman; Archibold Nunemaker; Joseph Oldfield; Peter Rauch; William Robinson; James & Joseph Stoughton; Simeon Tilton; John & Samuel Wilson;George Wolford and Phillip Young.
      In 1876,  the thriving village of Bloomingville   had expanded and a section beyond Queer Creek was known  as  " East Town" . In later years East Town disappeared, was torn down or moved. Relocation of some of the buildings, such as the Town church,  was moved into the northern section of the town due

to  the flooding waters of Queer Creek.
      The first mill was erected by Christian Eby, one of the first settlers. The mill was located over Queer Creek near the bridge on Route 56, east of now South Bloomingville.
     The first church , the  Methodist Episcopal Church ,was also located in the area nearby. The first sermon was preached by Reverend David Dutcher who became their first pastor.
     By the year of 1884 the village included two doctors, a millinery store, two general stores, a flour
mill, sawmill, and a blacksmith shop.
     Samuel and Christian Eby were the pioneer merchants of the town.
    The two general stores of the village, one was  managed by John Goddard and the other by John
    Emery Fisk Redfern was one of the doctors in the village and the other doctor was P.J. Green.
    Miss Redfern owned a millinery store and  George Gill owned the drug store.
    A flour mill and a saw mill were owned by Harry O. Haynes , and a blacksmith shop was owned by
John A. Smith.
    In 1883 the Township officers were: Trustees, Jonathan Shaw, Isaac Hill, and Andrew Devon. J. M. Buchanan was the Treasurer. The Clerk was George Gill.   Hiles Chilcote was the Assessor. Nathaniel Laicht and John Buckingham were the constables, with William Fleming and N.R. Petit as Justices of the Peace.
    Some of the villages residents  included, Benjamin H. Allen. John Allen Jr. who had twelve children,
one of which was a Mrs. E. Huffman.
    George Amerine who had bought the Adam Brown farm.
    Eli J. Dennis who married Mary Poling, and had twelve children, Mary C., Allie A., David, Barary,

Vance. Cynthia, George, Jacob, Denona, Effie, Henry and James H..
    Fredrick Wolfe who married Rebecca, in 1835, the daughter of John and Hester Chilcote. They had
 eight children, John, Hester A., Daniel, Joshua, William, Mary, Eby, and Columbus who married Jane Turner.
    Other residents included, W.B. Flemming, P.J. Green, Samuel H. Iler, Solomon Parrish, and Emery
 Fisk Redfern,M.D.
    It is hard to believe that this small village was once a bustling community with two country hotels,
 the " Ohio House " and the " American House". The Ohio House was built between 1860 and 1876, and was located at the corner of State Routes 56 and 664.
    In 1884 it was operated by J.W. Iles, who renamed it the "Iles House". The original building , at one
time, had been owned by Ray Harper, who tore the structure down and built a new hotel. George  Dennis operated a barber shop in the new building. A fire destroyed the hotel in the early 1950's. Apartments are now located on the site that once occupied the hotel.
    The other hotel the " American House", was operated for a time by William Evarts and was located across the street from Purcell Road, at the edge of the town.
    Around the turn of the century and in the early 1900's the town had a railroad, and there was  drilling for oil and natural gas. This created the need for housing for those men who came to work on the

railroad and drilling teams.
     There have been four post office locations in the village since it was platted by John Chilcote in 1836. The first postmaster was George Gill. In August of 1893 H. G. Meyers was appointed Postmaster. The last post office was located in the former Red Man's Hall, which  was built  around 1907, with the help of Charles Shaw. The Red Man's charter dates back to June 29, 1906. The Hall has now been replaced with a new building. Herman Brown was Postmaster for many of
the early years.   Other postmasters included  Myrtle M. Shaw Justice whom was postmaster from 1953 until she retired in 1974; Jeneve "Jenny" Taylor Shaw from 1974 until about 1980, Virginia Reynolds, and Lona Brown Stevens. The Post Office was closed down in November of 1983 ,with Lona Brown Stevens as the last Postmaster. One of the earlier Mail Carriers was Miles Brown. Guy Shaw was the Rural Carrier for the local area for many years. Michael Weaver was the last Mail Carrier from the South Bloomingville Post Office before it closed in 1983.
    It is believed that the railroad came to the area in the 1870's. An engine house, operated by the Columbus & Southern Railroad Company,was located by the old South Bloomingville cemetery on Goose Creek Road. The original plans called for a track to be laid through the area and join the railroad in
 Vinton County, but it was never completed. Instead the tracks stopped at  Bloomingville. The railroad bed extended to Ash Cave and stopped in Bone Hollow. When the train arrived at Bloomingville, it had
to back almost to Circleville in order to turn around. Local residents dubbed the train " Old Push and Pull" or " Old Pokey". The train was involved in a wreck near Salt Creek bridge on January 12, 1907, due to
flood waters and the decaying state of the railroad bridge. A poem was written about the incident by C.C. Edwards.  The tracks were removed around 1914.
    After the railroad left, the oil and natural gas drilling boon began. The Bloomingville Pumping Station was built in South Bloomingville in 1927 - 1928. The gas was pumped out of Bloomingville to Sugar Grove, at the time the largest pumping station in the world, with the gas pumping station at Bloomingville being the second largest.
    By 1912 other changes came to the village with different business owners. There was Pleukharp's General Store, Chilcote's Grocery, Sam Mattox blacksmith shop, Elmer App's Confectionery, four or five saw mills, and an ice house. Ice was cut from Cooper Hole and Queer Creek during the winter and  stored in the ice house.
    Walter Pleukharp's General Store was torn down in 1960 and replaced with a General Store and Gas Station that occupies the site today.
    Through the years the town has seen many changes , and many generations of families, and though smaller, strives to continue on  through tourism  and being located in  the center of the Hocking State Park's.

All Names are Spelled as they appeared on Documentations


Through the Years

Chilcote Store

Chilcote General Store Bloomingville

Early South Bloomingville

Walter Pleukharp's Store, Bloomingville, Ohio

At left first man (on crutches) Walter Pleukharp, third man is Silas Eby, fourth man
in the back is George Dennis, & the fifth man in front is Jim Iles. Standing upon the
Wagon Wheel is Speeder Huffman. The Store stood at the Corner of Main Street and
Mill Street, now the Corner of State Route 664 and State Route 56.


This a picture of Bloomingville from the top of the hill above  now land owned by Richard & Cindy Mercer Huffman's looking
down on the center of town.

You can see now Route #56  or Mill Street going off to the left and Goosecreek Road going off to the right and 
South Bloomingville Cemetery. The land beside the cemetery was owned by H. A. Jones and later by Silas Eby.

Benches were set up for town functions in the  lower center of this picture for town meetings. To the right
the buildings were  houses once owned by M. Kidknocker, Nancy Allen, John Smith and William Brown.
Later in the 50's it was called Keck Flat and had apartments .  The land is now owned by  Richard & Cindy Mercer Huffman.

The buildings across the street from Keck Flat was the Ohio House Hotel and beside it was the Valley Brown House.
The Ohio House Hotel and Valley Brown House were torn down and
in the early fifties  a Restaurant and Bar owned
by  Ray Harper were on this site which burned down. A Store and Gasoline station replaced it which has now been
turned into apartments.

To the left of the center picture at the bottom   was a store owned by S. Parrish.  This building was torn down and
was once the site of Weavers Garage and Gasoline Station  in the 50's but is now torn down and a vacant lot.
Across from it was what was the old A. Strawn Store which was later the Pleukharp store .

The Street downalong route 56 was called Mill Street and ran down into East Town. One of the houses beside
the Strawn Store was  a store owned by Ann Leach. I do not have the names of the other two  buildings  above them
On down Mill Street on the left by Queer Creek stood the big Grist Mill owned by Hiles Chilcote, later it was  the  Stevens
Mill owned by Thomas Stevens in 1910.

On a past the mill down Mill Street on up route #56 was the old 
  Bloomingville Epostical Methodist Church  in East Town.
Because of flooding the church was moved from there up into town beside Purcell Road. Sadly the 150 year old church
which was a part of history of Old Bloomingville was burnt to the ground in 2012 by an arsonist.

The land in this picture across the road from the church was owned by Kidnocker's and  Chilcote's and the home
 on up was owned by Nancy Newman.
Judging by the Columbus & Southern Railroad track and railroad car in this picture  the date of this picture would be
between 1902 - 1917.

Bloomingville as it was called then was once a thriving community with three street, Main Street, Mill Street and
Water Street which was  located down where the Columbia Gas Compression Station is now.

I want to thank Cindy Mercer Huffman and Mike Eveland for donating this picture.
If anyone can identify any of the other buildings please contact me.

1902 Class

Class of 1902 in South Bloomingville

The teacher was Lulu Mae Oldfield Chilcote the wife of
Joshua Clayton Chilcote.
The picture was donated by Crystal Chilcote Locke,
the Grand-daughter of Joshua and Lulu.

Baseball Team

The Old South Bloomingville Baseball Team

About 1915 -1920    Can You Identify Anyone?

Fourth Man From Right is Chester Arthur Eveland

Stevens Mill

Stevens Milling Company
1910 South Bloomingville, Mill Street

Owned by Thomas and Alice Stevens
The Child in the Picture is Believed to be the
Son of Thomas and Alice Stevens

Lafayette Eby

Lafayette Eby

The son of Christian Eby who was one of the first settlers
in Old Bloomingville. Christian Eby was in Hocking County by 1820

and was living in Benton Township before 1838.
Picture Donated By Lewis G. Eby Jr.

Eby Homestead

The Christian Eby Homestead

The Christian Eby Homestead was on State Route 56 one mile west
of South Bloomingville.  The house was destroyed by a fire.

Bloomingville 1900's

South Bloomingville in all Her Glory

This Picture is from the early 1900's and shows a much
larger South Bloomingville.The picture is taken from the hill
above Chilcote Road.
The picture was owned by Raymond "Turk" Shaw and
was donated by Damon Shaw son of Turk and Jenny Taylor Shaw.

Benton Correctional Camp

Benton Correctional Camp -1950

Was a camp on State Route 374 for honor prisoner's opened in November 1950.
The prisoner's helped to fight fires and keep maintenance on the Hocking
State Parks Area. Now it is the home of the Ohio Forestry Division

Benton Scenic School

South Bloomingville Scenic School

1953 - Fred Good was Principal

  Benton Scenic School History & Alumni Page

Scenic Inn

The Scenic Inn at Ash Cave

The Scenic in was on State Route 56 a quarter of a mile from Ash Cave.
It was situated on a very sharp curve along Queer Creek. There were cabins
and a restaurant and was once owned by the Iles Family. A cave was behind the Inn.
It was bought by the State Parks and torn down in the 1970's.

Fire Tower

Fire Tower in Benton Township

The Fire Tower at Cedar Falls  or Ash Cave State Park in Hocking
County.  The Watchers in the tower  were Mr. Jones, Frank Rose and
then Sylvia Akers until
it was closed. If anyone knows when
these towers were
built please contact me.


The E & B Service Station in 1960.

Owned by Chester A. Eveland and Marvin Brown.
Known as "Brownie" and "Doc".
Across the Street is Weaver's Used Car Lot,
Weaver's Grocery Store and Service Station.
Owned by Claude Weaver and Gayle Pleukharp Weaver.
Also pictured is the old Red Man's Hall and South Bloomingville Post Office.

Pleukharp Store

Pleukharp General Store

Moving Day
This was the Old Pleukharp General Store Before it was torn
down in 1960. Located at the corner of Route's 56 & 664
A new store and Filling station was built by Claude
and Gayle Pleukharp Weaver. Fred Justice was a
store clerk in the old Pleukharp General Store.
Claude and Sharon Bainter Weaver are manning
the wheelbarrow.

Picture from Logan Daily News

Post Office

South Bloomingville Post Office

This was the site of the South Bloomingville Post Office
located in the old Red Man's Hall.
The post office was closed in October of 1983
with Lona Brown Stevens as the last Post Master.

C. L. Eby Blacksmith Shop

C. L. Eby Blacksmith Shop
Picture Donated by Lewis Eby Jr.

Ash Cave

Ash Cave Back in the Day

     More Benton Township Pioneer Photo's

  Benton Scenic School History & Alumni  Page

       Columbus & Southern Train Wreck
From South Bloomingville to Laurelville, Ohio

If You Would Like to Donate an Old   Photograph of South Bloomingville, of its
Settlers, or Any Old History of Benton Township, Please Contact Me or Email a

Small Scanned Copy.
Thank You,
Lona Brown Stevens

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