Lehigh County Pennsylvania
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History of Lehigh County Pa by Daniel Rupp
Lehigh county was separated from Northampton county by an act of Assembly passed the 6th March, 1812. The act defines the boundaries as follows:"That all that part of Northampton county, lying and being within the limits of the following townships, to wit: The townships of Lynn, Heidleburg, Lowhill, Weissenburg, Macungie, Upper Milford, SouthWhitehall, Northampton, Salisbury, Upper Saucon, and that part of Hanover township within the following bounds, to wit" Beginning at Bethlehem linewhere it joins the Lehigh river; thence along the daid line until it intersects the road leading from Bethlehem or the Lehigh Water Gap; thence along said road to Allen township line; thence along the line of Allen township westwardly, to the Lehigh, shall be, and the same are hereby, according to their present lines, declared to the erected into a county, henceforth to be called LEHIGH."
This county is bounded on the north-west by the Kittatinney or Blue mountains, separating it from Schuylkill and Carbon counties,north-west by Northampton, south-east by Bucks, and south-west by MontgomeryBerks counties. The physical appearance of the county is diversified. The surface is generally level, in someplaces rolling, in others rugged and somewhat broken. The lofty Kittatinny on the north, fives that portion its peculiar features. The Lecha Hill, or South mountain crosses the south-east portion of the country, which gives the country a rugged surface. This mountain range is of primary formation, abounding with iron ore. Between the South and Bluemountains, is the fertile Kittatinny valley, perhaps unsurpassed in agricultural wealth, being highly cultivated by the industrious class of our worthy fellowcitizens, Germans by descent, whose habits of industry and frugality they retain..
Perhaps few counties in the state, are more picturesque and varied than Lehigh. The valley portion of the county is nearly equally divided between the limestone and clay slate formation.
"The most important productions are those of agriculture. In a fertile region like this, an industrious population naturally looks to the tillage of soil, as their surest dependence for support and profit. Considerable progress had, however, been made in many branches of manufacturing industry, and the development of the mineral resources of the country has not been neglected. The iron ore of this region supplies material for the operationof several furnaces, viz: The Crane Iron Works, Stephen Balliet’s Furnace,Hunter’s & Miller’s Furnace, and Ibach’s Forge. The Crane Works, of a very lage size, are constructed expressly to smelt iron with anthracite coal, by means of the hot blast.
The county is well watered by the Lehigh river and its numerous tributaries, viz: Antelauny, or Maiden creek, Caply, or Balliet’sTrout, Jordan, Cedar, Caladaque, Perkiomen, and the Little Lehigh creeks;Crowner’s, Linn, Willow and Sinking runs.
The Lehigh river called Leckhaw, by the Indians, signifying West Branch, is a branch of the Delaware. It rised in Wayne, Pike and Luzerne counties, but its various tributatries unite near Stoddartsville, on the north-0western border of Monroe county, and as the stream flows onward, it augments by receiving the waters of many mountain creeks; and in its course of twenty-five miles, it makes, as the mouth of Wright’s Mill creek, a turnnearly south; and after stealing a serpentine course of twenty miles, itreaches, by the way of Mauch Chunk, Lehighton. Here is deflects to the south-east, and pursues that direction twenty-five miles, to Allentown, when it turns at an angle of one hundred and twenty or more degrees to the Lehigh Hills,flows hard by Bethlehem, and twenty-five miles below, reaches the Delawareriver. In its course it receives, within Carbon county, from the west side,Quaeake creek, Nesquehoning, Mauch Chunk, Mahoning and Lizard creeks; from the east, Bear creek, Big creek, formed at Hoed’s creek, Poko-po-poko,Aquanshicola; * from Lehigh county, Trout creek, Jordan creek, Little Lehigh,Hockyondaque, Mill creek, or Caladaque, Monokacey; in Northampton county, from the south, Saucon creek, besides dome small runs. 1
The Lehigh may, with much propriety, by called, "AMountain Torrent." It rushes headlong when swollen, and sweeps every impeding obstacle. The fall of the river is, from Stoddardsville, to the mouth of the Nesquehoning creek, about two miles above Lausanne, and three above Mauch Chunk, 845 feet; from Nesquehoningto the Lehigh Water Gap, 260 feet; from the Gap to Easton, 205 feet. Thus in a comparative course, of less than seventy miles, it has a fall of thirteen hundred and ten feet. From Easton to tidewater, in the Delaware river at Trenton, the stream falls about one hundred feet. The Lehigh at Stoddartsville, is therefore elevated 1410 feet above the level of the ocean.
The navigation of the river has been much improved. In its natural state, the Lehigh was navigable for boats carrying fifteen tons, as far as Lausanne, at the foot of the Broad mountain, when a rocky rapid just above the Turnhole, called Hutchetooth Falls, improved the ascending navigation. When the river was low—in August and September—boats with loading could not ascend further than Allentown.
The navigation of the Lehigh was improved principally by the exertions of Messrs. Josiah White and Erskine Hazard, who obtained, March 20,1818, from the Legislature an act to authorize them to commence theiroperations."
The improvements made by the Lehigh Coal and Navigation Company, are of great advantage to this county, by affording a cheap and ready means of trans-
(•In the Provincial Records, in the Secretary’s office at Harrisburg, the name of this stream is written Aquanshehals. Record of Charters and Indian Deeds, p. 128.
1 For an account of small streams, see description of townships)
porting produces and merchandize, as well as considerable home market. By this navigation a surplus of provisions, flour, hay, & c.,is carried to Mauch Chunk, and to the timber region higher up/ And that destined for Philadelphia is sent by way of Easton, and thence by canal to Bristol and Philadelphia. Merchandize is brought back in return.
In this connection, is presented an attempt to describe astupendous work of nature, namely:
Die Lecha Wusser-Huft, i.e. the Lehigh Water Gap, inthe Kittatinny, or Blue mountain, the dividing line between Carbon county and that of Lehigh and Northampton, is so named from the river Lehigh, which steals its way through the Gap, prominently walled on both sides, forms a sublime object of admiration, and presents to the observant spectator, one of the most picturesque prospects in east Pennsylvania. At almost every season of the year, the diversified defile is exceedingly attractive. The writed visted this place in Spetemver, 1844. In ascending the eastern bank some hundred feet,the scene heightens in grandeur, and the stream – the beautiful, yer curking,rippled waters of the Lehigh river, add much, nay every thing, to make it impressive beyond oblivion. Though it is seemingly a rugged stream here, yet as you follow it in its course, through a fertile region of country, receving tributaries of different sizes, until itself is a considerable river, before it reaches its silvery recipient, the Delaware. It is in all its ways, as well as at the Gap, where it rolls majestically over a rupic bed, and reflecting a sombre shade of the impending mountains, a grand stream.
To return to the Gap. The eastern bank is bordered for the distance of about a mile by craggy cliffs, towering to an amazing height, and of forms that most bizarre. Between ehich wall of rocks and the river the roadwinds along. Hastening to leave these black abodes, which seem to afford shelter to none but the ravenous beasts of the forest, the Lehigh appears eagerly movingon towards the fertile low lands, which succeed in view, on the eastern bank.
Ascending the eastern height, the traveller is amply rewarded for the exertion of climbing from rock to rock, in scaling the pine covered side of the mountain, by the rich and extensive prospect which the eye then commands. At his feet roll the waters of the majestic stream—on the opposite side is a towering ridge, near the summit of which appears, right opposite, emerging from the surrounding woods, a lonely pile of rocks, whimsically called, " DieTeufel's Kanzel," i. e. " The Devil's Pulpit," which indignantly suffers but a few blasted pines to shade its sullen brow. At a distance an extensive country, variegated with woods and farms, watered by the meandering Lehigh, and ridge retiring behind ridge, till lost in the faint tintsof the horizon, all bursts upon the sight, and fill the mind with sublime ideas of the greatness of the Creator. The shattered rocks, thrown together in wild confusion, and the strata of rounded stones, which are to be met with in passing through the Gap, have given rise to the supposition that the Lehigh, being obstructed in its course by the Blue mountain, was formerly dammed up into alake, which at length bursting the barrier, formed the chasm now called the Lehigh Gap. The learned have not agreed, as yet, in the decision of thismooted point.
A learned writer says : "It is common to speak of such passes as being formed by the rivers, which are often supposed to have burst their barriers, and thus to have shaped their own channels. This may have happened in some peculiar cases, and there are doubtles many instances where the lakes, of which many must have been left at the retiring both of the primevaland of the diluvial ocean, have worn or burst away their barriers, especially when composed, as they must often have been, of loose materials. But with respect to most rocky passes of rivers through mountains, there appears no reason whatever to believe that the waters have torn assunder the solid strata. A more resistless, energy must have been requisite for such an effect; and we must therefore conclude that the rivers have, in most instances, merely flowed on through the lowest and least obstructed passages. Their channels they have doubtless deepened and modified, often to an astonishing dergree but they have rarely formed them through solid rocks."—Silliman.
The county is conveniently intersected by good roads—the streams are readily crossed by substantial bridges. The county is well supplied with mills.There are about seventy grist mills, fifty saw mills, seven oil mills, six woolen factories, and several fulling mills, three powder mills and one papermill in the county, besides thirty tanneries.
The county is divided into the following townships, which are fully described in the sequel,viz: Hanover, Heidelberg, Low Hill, Linn, Lowen, Macunjy,Northampton, North Whitehall, Salisbury, South Whitehall, Upper Milford, UpperMacunjy, Upper Saucon and Weissenberg.
The population of this county was, in 1820,17,175 ; in 1810, 22,266;in 1840, 25,787.
The first court held in, the county met in the public house, now kept by Mr. Craig,then kept by Mr. George Savitz. The court house was erected in 1814. The jail had been previously built. The following is an extract from the public records:
At a Court of General Quarter Sessions of the Peace, began and held at theborough of Northampton, for the county of Lehigh, on the 21st day of December,before the Hon. Robert, president, and the Hon. Peter Rhoads andJonas Hartzell, Esq., Associate Judges of the said Court. At the Novemberterm, 1813.
November 30. Court met at the house of George Savitz, and adjournedfrom thence to meet in the upper story of the county prison, prepared by the commissioners for holding the courts of the county of Lehigh, until the courthouse be erected.
Grand furors. Jacob Newhard, Sr., foreman; Zacharias Long,Casper Moyer, George Brush, Philip Kleckner, Andrew Eisenheart,.Jonathan Knauss, George Yeahle, John Cromer, John Bergenstock,John Jerret, George Wenner, Adam Singmaster, Daniel Trexall,Frederick Hyneman, George Essing, Abraham Diehl.
Lehigh having been part of Northampton county, its early history is merged with that of the county from which it has been formed. In 1798-'99, scenes occurred of no ordinary degree, a principal part of which transpired in this county.
Shortly after the election of John Adams, several acts were passed byCongress, which were obnoxious to a portion of the people of East Pennsylvania,in consequence of which, Berks, Bucks and Northampton, presented scenes of excitement. In Northampton, a party headed by one Fries, resisted attempts by the federal government to collect a direct tax—-well known by the name of "the house fax." John Fries, a desperado,and his associates, not only resisted the assessors, but in hot pursuit chased them from township to township. It is said there were parties of them—fifty and sixty in number—most of them well armed. Fries himself was armed with a large horse pistol, and accompanied by one Kuyder, who assisted him in command. They seized several assessors.
In some parts of the counties named, in demonstration of their opposition to government, they erected liberty poles. To quell the insurrection,troops, in obedience to Adams' instruction, were raised in Lancaster county. Several companies marched from Lancaster, April 1,1789, wending theirfront; toward the arena of dispute, by way of Reading, when Captain Montgomery'stroop of light horse arrived on the evening of the 1st of April. Their first act, to display their prowess and gallantry, was to go clandestinely to thehouse of Jacob Gosin, who, in the Spirit of the times, had erected aliberty pole on his own premises, which they cut, without meeting anyresistance.
To give undoubted proof of their daring bravery, they brandished their damascene weapons—drew pistols, to show that they were armed, in the house ofthe in offensive father, whose minor children were scared " half todeath," at the marshal manceuvers of the Lancaster troops.
To let no time slip, and while they were undaunted, they proceeded from Gosin'sto the house of John Strohecker, whither their eagle eyes were drawn by arecently erected potf, tipped with a rag, " napping in the breeze."This pole, to show the independence of some sturdy urchins, had been erectedby-some children, in which Strohecker's were ringleaders. To deter these young heroes, the solders took down the pole, stripped it of itsinsignia—entered the house where they found the little wights—and as theydid at Gosin's, so did they here—brandished weapons of war—presentedpistols and swords to the youthful company, to no small alarm of both parentsand children!!
To consummate their martial plans and designs, they molested the house ofJacob Epler—maltreated him unprovokedly. Like bravos ever merit—these merited the contempt of all reflecting persons—rendering themselves obnoxiousto the orderly and well disposed among all classes.
Satisfied, of having rendered their country some service, the troop next morning started for Northampton, to fully execute the specific purpose of their mission. This done, they again returned by way of Reading, where they entered the office of the "AdIer," a paper edited and punted by Jacob Schneider,whom they rudely denuded, by violently tearing his clothes from his body, in a somewhat inclement season, and by force of arms, dragged him before the commanding captain, who peremptorily ordered the editor, for writing and printing some offensive articles, to be whipped, "Twenty-five lashes,"said he, " shall be well laid on his denuded back, in the markethouse"—which order was, however, not executed, because of the timely and manly interposition of some gentlemen of Captain Leiper's company, ofPhiladelphia. A few lashes, however, had been inflicted before these men had time to fully interpose— these were laid on by one accustomed to beat, when little resistance is to be dreaded—he was a drummer!
Colonel Epier, who it appears had by this time erected, by the assistance of his neighbors, a liberty pole in place of the pole erected by his children— thither the soldiery resorted, where they attempted to compel acommon laborer to cut down the "offensive wood," notwithstanding that.he protested against doing so, at the same time, on most solemn asserverations declaring he was also a federalist—Ich bin auch ein Federalihr liebe Leut; dasbin. Ja ich anch ein Federal !
They succeeded in divesting the pole, and with it appended as a trophy, they rode. vociferating as they went through the streets of Reading, to their placeof quarters. In a few days they left; but on the 24th of April, an army, under the command of Brigadier General McPherson, arrived at Reading,apprehending some of the insurrectionists, who were afterwards tried beforeJudge Peters—some found guilty—some were fined and. imprisoned—somewere condemned to be capitally punished, but none attoned with their lives—they were pardoned through executive clemency !
The following extracts are taken from the report of the trial of John Fries,and others, for treason;
A grand Jury was empaelled, consisting of the following gentlemen, namely: J.Ross, Joseph Parker, Robert Ralston, John Perat,Daniel Smith, Edward Pennington, Benjamin W. Morris, John Craig,David H. Conyngham, Gideon Hill Wells, Wm. Montgomery,Philip Nicklin, Thos. M. Willing, Samuel Coates, T. C. Fisher,William Buckley A true bill found.
May 15, 1799. Mr. Setgreaves, of Easton, opened the trial on the partof the United States. The following are extracts from his speech:
" It will appear, gentlemen, from the testimony, which will be presented to you, that during the latter months of the year 1798, discords prevailed to an enormous extent throughout a large portion of the counties of Bucks,Northampton, and Montgomery; and that considerable difficulties attended the assessors for the direct tax, in the execution of their duties—that in several townships associations of the people were actually formed in order to prevent the persons charged with the execution of these laws of the United States, from performing their duty, and more particularly to prevent the assessors from measuring their houses. This opposition was made at many public township meetings, called for the purpose. In many instances resolutions in writing were entered into, solemnly forewarning the officers, and many times accompanied with threats. Not only so, but discontents prevailed to such a height, that even the friends of the government in that part were completely suppressed by menaces against any who should assist those officers in their duty, repeated declarations were made, both at public as we'll as at private meetings, that ifany person should be arrested by the civil authority, such arrest would befollowed by the rising of the people, in opposition-to that authority, for the purpose of rescuing such prisoners, indefatigable pains were taken, by those charged with the execution of the laws, to calm the fears and remove themisapprehensions of the infatuated people; for this purpose they read andexplained the law to them, and informed them that they were misled into the ideathat the law was not actually in force, for that it actually was; at the sametime warning them of the consequences which would flow from opposition; and this was accompanied with promises that even their most capricious wishes would be gratified on their obedience. The favor was in many instances granted, that where any opposition was made to any certain person executing the office ofassessor, another should be substituted. In some townships proposals were made for people to choose for themselves; but, notwithstanding this accommodating offer, the opposition continued. The consequences were, actual opposition and resistance; in some parts violence was actually used, and the assessors were taken and imprisoned by armed parties, and in other parts mobs assembled tocompel them either to deliver up their papers or to resign their commissions;that in some instances they were threatened with bodily harm, so that in those parts the obnoxious law remained unexecuted in consequence. The state of insurrection and rebellion had arisen to such a height, it became necessary tocompel the execution of the laws, and warrants were in consequences issued against certain persons and served upon them; in some instances, during theexecution of that duty; the marshal met with insult and almost with violence;having, however, got nearly the whole of the warrants served, he appointed head-quarters for these prisoners to rendezvous at Bethlehem where some of themwere to enter bail for their appearance in the city, others were to come to thecity in custody for trial.
On the day thus appointed for the prisoners to meet, and whan a number ofthem had actually assembled, agreeably to appointment, a number of the parties in arms, both horse and foot, more than a hundred men, accountered with all their military apparatus, commanded in some instances by their proper officers,marched to Bethlehem, collected before the house in which were the marshal and prisoners whom they demanded to be delivered up to them, and in conquence of refusal, they proceeded to act very little short of actual hostility; so that the marshal deemed it prudent to accede to their demands, and the prisoners were liberated.
"This, gentleman, is the general history of the insurrection. I shall not state to you the part which the unfortunate prisoner at the bar took inthose hostile transactions. The prisoner is an inhabitant of Lower Milford,Bucks county. Some time in February last, a public meeting was held at the houseof one John Kline, that that township, to consider this house tax; at that meeting certain resolutions were entered into and a paper signed; (we have endeavored to trace this paper so as to produce it to the court and jury, but have failed.) This paper was signed by fifty-two persons, and committed to the hands of one of their numbers. John Fries was present as this meeting and assisted in drawing up the paper, at which time his expressions against this law were extremely violent, and he threatened to shoot one of the assessors, Mr. Foulke,through the legs, if he proceeded to assess the hosues; again the prisoners at avendue if he attempted to go on with the assessment, he should be cmmitted to anold stable and there fed on rotten corn. The assessor in Lower Milford was intimidated so as to decline, making the assessments, and the principal assessors, together with three other assessors, were obliged to go into that township to execute the law. At the home of Mr. Jacob Fries, on the 5thMarch, Mr. Chapman, the assessor, met with the prisoner, who declared his determination not to submit, but to oppose the law, and that by next morning hecould raise seven hundred men in opposition to it."
[Fries and his partisans continued to follow and persecute several ofthe assessors, chasing them from township to township, in parties of fifty orsixty, most of whom were in arms, with drum and fife. Fries was armedwith a large horse pistol, and accompanied by one Kuyder, who assistedhim in command. Thus equipped they went to Quarkertown, seized two assessors,and attempted to fire at another who ran away, but the firm-arm did not go off.They examined the papers of the assessors, and exacted a Promise that theyshould not proceed in the valuation of the houses in Lower Milford. They abuseda traveller who had the independence to stand up for the government. At Quakertown, learning that the marshal had taken a number of prisoners, they resolved to effect their rescue, and the people of Milford were invited to assist in this business, and a paper setting forth their design, was drawn by the Fries, at his own house, and signed by the party.]
" On the morning of the next day, twenty or more of them met at the house of Conrad Marks, in arms. John Fries was armed with a sword,and had a feather in his hat. On the road as they went forward they were met by young Marks, who told them they might as well turn about, for that the Northampton people were strong enough to do the business without those from Bucks county. Some were so inclined to do, but at the instance of Friesand some others, they did go forward, and actually proceeded to Bethlehem.Before the arrival of these troops, a party going on the same business had stopped at the bridge near Bethlehem, where they were met by a deputation from the marshal, to advise them to return home; they agreed to hault there, and send three of their number to declare to the marshal their demand. During this periodFries and his party came up, but it appears when they came, Friestook the party actually over the bridge, and he arranged the toll, and ordered them to proceed. With respect to the proof of the proceedings at Bethlehem, it cannot be mistaken; he was then the leading man, and he appeared to enjoy the command. With the consent of his people he demanded the prisoners of the marshal, and when that officer told him that he could not surrender them, exceptthey were taken from him by force, and produced his warrant for taking them, the prisoner then harrangued his party of the house, and explained to them the necessity of using force; and that you should not mistake his design, we will prove to you that he declared ' that was the third day which he bad been out on this expedition, that he had had a skirmish the day before, and if the prisonerswere not released he should have another that day.’ ‘Now you observe,’resumed he, ‘that force is necessary, but you must obey my orders. We will notgo without taking the prisoners. But take my orders—you must not fire first;you must be first fired upon, and when I am gone you must do as well as you can,as I expect to be the first man that falls.’ He further declared to the marshal that they would fire till a cloud of smoke prevented them from seeing each other, and executing the office of command of the troops, which at that time overawed the marshal and his attendants. He harangued the troops to obeyhis orders, which they did. The marshal was really intimidated to liberate the prisoners; and then the object was accomplished, and the party dispersed amid the huzzas of the insurgents. After this affair at Bethlehem, the prisoner frequently avowed his opposition to the law, and justified that outrage; andwhen a meeting was afterwards held at Lower Milford to choose assessors, the prisoner refused his assent, and appeared as violent as ever."
Most of the above statements were proved, including a variety of other details. Fries, after two trials, in both of which he was found guilty oftreason, was sentenced to be hung, but was subsequently pardoned by John Adams.
Several others from the same vicinity were tried, and generally found guilty of the subordinate crimes of sedition, insurrection, and riot; they wereimprisoned for a time, and heavily fined, and held to bail for good behavior.George Gittman and Frederick Hainey were also condemned for high treason. Among the disaffected who had been taken prisoners by the marshal, and who were rescued by the insurgents, was one Jacob Eyerman, a Germanminister, recently arrived from Germany. He seems to have exerted nearly as much influence as Fries, in stirring up the people in Chestnut Hill and Hamilton townships, to opposition. History does not state to what sect he belonged, but the testimony would seem to show that he strongly favored the" church militant." One of the assessors testified that while on his round of duty in Chestnut Hill township, "the prisoner (Eyerman)came in and began to rip out in a violent manner against this taxation, saying that Congress had made laws which were unjust, and the people need not take upwith them; if they did, all kinds of laws would follow; but if they would not put up with this, they need not with those that would come after, because it.was a free country; but in case the people admitted of those laws, they would certainly be put under great burdens. He said he knew perfectly what laws were made, and that the President nor Congress had no right to make them. That Congress and the government only made such laws to rob the people, and that they were nothing but a parcel of damned rogues or ‘spitz bube,’ [highwaymenor thieves.]
"Were the people of the township much opposed to the law?""Yes, they were so violent that I knew but one man on the same side asmyself." "Would this have been so if it had not been for parson?""I am fully convinced it would not." "Did Eyerman appear to be a simple sort of man, easily to be led astray or deluded ?" "No, he was not thought so; he was always a very good preacher."
Prisoner.—" Did I not pray for the Government, President and Vice President?" "Yes, you did when in the pulpit; but when you were out,you prayed
The other way."
John Sneider deposed, that he lived in Hamilton township, and knew the prisoner—as much as he understood, the prisoner meant to take arms against it. He said if we let that go forward, it would go on in the old country, but that the [Eyerman] would rather lay his black coat on a nail, and fight the the whole week, and preach for them Sundays, than that should be so.
"How long has this man been at Hamilton?"
"About 18 months."
"The township was always peaceable, I suppose, before he came among you?" "Yes, and believe if he had not come, nothing would have happened of the kind."
Another witness said that the prisoner came to his house, where conversation began about the house tax, whereupon he said he did not care whether they put upwith it or not, for he had no house to tax. A person present answered: But you have a great quantity of books to tax. The prisoner answered that "ifanybody would offer to tax his books, he would take a French, a Latin, a Hebrew, and a Greek book down to them, and if they could not read them, he would slap them about their ears till they would fall to pieces." The prisoner continued preacher to that congregation until he was taken up.
After the rescue, he fled to New York state, but was apprehended and brought back, and found guilty of conspiracy, &c., &c., was sentenced to beimprisoned one year, pay fifty dollars fine, and give security for his goodbehavior one year. About thirty others were convicted, and fined and imprisoned according to the degree of crime.—Day's Historical Collection.
TOPOGRAPHY OF TOWNSHIPS, &c.
Hanover township is the only township in this county,east of the Lehigh river. It is bounded on the north, by Alien township; east,by Hanover and Bethlehem, and south, by Lehigh township—all of Northampton county; and south-west by the Lehigh river. The form of this township is very irregular. The surface is level; limestone soil, of an excellent quality, wellcultivated, and very productive, repaying the labor of the farmer richly. TheCaladaque creek, which rises in Allen township, Northampton county, and running south-westwardly, running along the -south-western boundary, through the north-east angle of this township, and following into the Lehigh river, about two miles below Hockendoque, affords some water-power, having several mills uponit. The Lehigh river affords an abundance of mill seats; there are several grist and saw-mills, two woolen factories, and a paper-mill, in this township.
The Allentown bridge, across Lehigh river, connects this township with the borough of Allentown. Formerly, there was an elegant chainbridge over the Lehigh, consisting of two loops and two half loops, and suspended by four chains. That bridge was two hundred and thirty feet long and thirty wide.
The population, in .1820, was 806 ; in 1830, 1,102; in 1840,1,343. The county tax, levied in 1844, amounted to S708 83; the state tax, $96728.
Biery's Port, a post village, consisting of several dwellings, two taverns, one store, a grist mill, a Presbyterian church, and the Crane iron works, are m this township.
The iron works are owned by Messrs, White, Hazzard, Mitchel, Erb, M’Callister & Co.; are of a large size, and constructed expressly to smelt iron, with anthracite coal, by means of the hot blast The water power is supplied from the Lehigh canal of the Lehigh Coal and Navigation Company, and the furnaces, with the blowing and air-heating apparatus, are constructed in a superior manner. The works have been in successful operation since 1840, producing, at present, weekly, from one hundred and ninety to two hundred tons of castings of various kinds. The works are about three miles northof Allentown, and five from Bethlehem.
Rittersville is a post village, consisting of five dwellings, one tavern, one store—a church, near it, is located in a poor partof the township.
Heidelberg township is bounded on the north-east by Carbon county; south-east, by North Whitehall township; south, by Low Hilltownship, and west, by Linn township. The figure of it is very irregular. The surface is very hilly, being partly crossed by the Blue mountain; the soil is white gravel, producing, if well cultivated, an abundant crop of rye. In the north-west corner of the township is a singular knob, called " BakeOven. Knob." The township contains nine grist mills, seven saw mills,one furnace, owned by Stephen Balliet; one fulling mill, two woolen factories, one gun and rifle manufactory, several tanneries, and ten or fifteen distilleries in operation.
The township is drained by Trout creek, which rises at thefoot of the Blue mountain, and running eastwardly, falls with the Lehigh river,about two miles below the Water Gap, turning several mills, but not sufficiently large to be navigable. It is also drained by Jordan, rising at the foot of the Blue mountain, in this township, and running a very crooked course, towards the south-east, falling into the Little Lehigh creek, not more than one hundred perches from its mouth. The Jordan, and its various branches, two. agreat number of mills, but is not navigable. The waters of the Jordan are much affected by wet and dry seasons. Crowner's run is also one of the small streams that drains the township; it rises about the centre of it, and flowing southwardly, unites with the Jordan creek, on the line between Low Hill ar.dWhitehall townships.
The population, in 1820, was 1,900; in 1830, 2,808; in 1840,2,354. Amount of county tax levied in l844, was $770 5G , state tax, $1,067 59.In 1843, $20 52 was paid for the education of the poor.
Segersville, a post village, about seventeen miles north-west from Allentown, near the line of the township, contains about twenty dwellings, one store and one tavern. The only church in the township isabout two miles from the village. The country around the village-is rough and broken. Agriculture needs some considerable attention being paid to it, before the farmer can count on ample and certain returns for his labor.
Germansville, a small place, one store, owned by Nathan German. During the French and Indian war, in 1755 and 1756, thegreater part of the inhabitants of this township had fled to Bethlehem and other places, for refuge, and to escape being inhumanly butchered by the savage hordes who were marauding this region of country in search of human victims to glut their vengeance. In October, 1763, the inhabitants were again alarmed by the Indians committing cruel murders in an adjoining township. (See NorthWhitehall township.)
North Whitehall township is bounded on the north-east, by the Lehigh river, which seperates it from Northampton county; on the south, by South Whitehall township ; on the west, by Low Hill township, and north-west, by Heidelberg township. The surface is level; limestone soil, rich,and generally pretty well cultivated. This township is singularly intersected bynumerous roads, which centre in the main road, leading to Allentown. The Jordancreek and Coply creek, or Balliet's creek, are the principal streams draining the township. Coply creek rises in this township—running south-easterly, falls into the Lehigh river, about five miles above Allentown. In its course, it turns several mills. In dry seasons it fails much. This township contains seven grist mills, four saw mills, and a number of tanneries. There are two German Reformedand Lutheran churches in this township; one near the north-western boundary, and the other, on the south, near Coply creek. The population of 1820, was 1,807; in1830, 2,008; in 1840, 2,324. The county tax, assessed for 1844, was $89925; state tax, $1,340 83. In 1843, $19 78 were paid for the education of the poor.
Siegersville is a small post village, consisting of five or six dwellings, one store, and one tavern. It is situated in a fertile and highly improved country.
Snydersville, owned by George Snyder, who isproverbially known as the "Keeper of the Drovers’ Inn." The place consists of a small cluster of houses and several shops. Its situation, it is said, is peculiar —it is in and between, like "George," the village being both in North Whitehall and Upper Macunjy, having the boundary line passing through it.
Kern’s Mills. Here is a post office, a grist mill,one store, and several dwelling houses.
Slate Dam Here is a store and dwellings, owned by Reuben Sager.
Before this township was separated, or divided into North and South Whitehall, the Indians committed depredations within its borders; even at a time when it had been supposed all hostilities had ceased, a party of savages appeared on a sudden, in this township, and did some bloody work. "On theeighth of October, 1763, a party of fifteen or twenty Indians, attacked the house of Nicholas Marks, of Whitehall township. Marks, his wife, and an apprentice boy, made
South Whitehall township is bounded on the north by North Whitehall township; east, by the Lehigh river, which separates it from Hanover township, and by Northampton township; south by Upper Macunjy township.The surface is level; limestone soil, very well cultivated, and abundantly productive, amply repaying the husbandman for the care bestowed upon it in ajudicious course of culture.
This township is watered by Jordan creek, and Cedar creek.The latter rises from a large spring in Upper Macunjy township, and turns a large flour mill, about six perches below the fountain, and after a course of three miles, falls into the Little Lehigh. The volume of this singular stream appears invariable in wet or dry weather. The long continued drought this summer, (1844) though affecting all other streams, did not any the least diminish this stream. It never freezes, and the grass, which grows to the.water's edge, appears green all seasons, and is always uncovered, the water dissolving the snow as it falls. Sinking Run is another remarkable stream; it rises in Macunjy township, and flows easterly, through this township; it sinks into the ground about five miles from Allentown. It is supposed to have a subterraneous course of more than a mile southward, and to rise at the fountain of Cedar creek, in Upper Macungie.
(Proud’s History of Pa. Appendix, p. 624.)
Cavern Spring rises near the mouth of a limestone cavern, within two miles of the borough of Allentown; on the north-west is a large fountain, and pours its waters into the Jordan creek. This cavern has an entrance of ten or eleven feet high, and has been penetrated about one hundred feet, into the hill, to a stream of water.
This township contains five grist mills, two saw mills, several tanneries, and a German Reformed and Lutheran church, about four miles from Alien township. Ibach’s forge is in this township.
The population of this township, in 1820, was 1,623; in 1830,1,952; in 1840, 2,290. The amount of county tax, assessed in 1844, was $1,23070; state tax, $1,757 19. In 1843, $244 42 were paid for the education of the poor.
It appears that this township, and others, were over run bythe Indians, in 1763; for we find "that October 15th, 1763, Governor Hamiltoncalled the attention of the Assembly to the sad condition of the settlers ofLinn, Heidelberg, Whitehall, Macunjy, Salisbury and Upper Milford townships, ofthe county of Northampton, (now Lehigh.) Their houses were destroyed, their farms laid waste, barns, grain, fences, &c. burnt to ashes—eighteen persons murdered."
The persons who had been massacred, were unoffending German immigrants, who had never molested an Indian. This excited the suspicion of the inhabitants, generally. The Indians were traced, by scout, to wigwams of the Christian Indians, at Conestoga, and to those in Northampton county, which eventuated in the total extermination of the Indians, in Lancaster county, in December 1763.
Linn township is bounded on the north, by Carbon county; east, by Heidelberg township; south, by Weissenberg; south-west, by Berks county, and on the north-west, by Schuylkill county. The Blue mountain crossing the northern part of the township, the surface along it is hilly or greatly rolling; a portion of the surface of this township is pretty level; the soil is gravelly—agriculture may still be much improved, though many of thefarms yield well. The free use of lime, as a stimulating manure, would greatly aid in improving the soil, and well repay a large per centage.
This township is drained by the Antelauny, or Maiden creek,which rises here and flows into the Schuylkill river, through Berks county. Linnrun, which rises in this township, near the south-west boundary, is a tributary of the Jordan creek. The sources of the Antelauny and Linn run, almostintermingle. These streams afford an abundance of mill seats; there are,in this township, ten grist mills, five saw mills, one woolen factory, one powder mill,and three German Reformed and Lutheran churches; also several small villages. This township, and Albany, in Berks county, formed a portion of Allemaen-gel,in days past
Linnville is a small post village, about seventeen miles north-west of Allentown, consisting of a few dwellings, one-store and onetavern.
New Tripoli, a post village, about fifteen miles from Allentown, consists of several houses.
Jacksonville is a post village, in the northern part of the township, about eighteen miles from Allentown. The population of this township, in 1820, was 1,664; in 1830, 1,747; in 1840, 1,895. The county tax, assessed in 1844, was $741 03; the state tax, $1,012 85. In 1843, $49 02, were paid for the education of the poor.
This region of country, of which this township constitutes apart, was settled at a comparatively early period, settlements having been made about the year 1735. In February, 1756, the Indians committed a number of cruel murders upon the German settlers.
On the 14th of February, 1756, the Indians surprized theinmates of the house of Frederick Reichelsderfer, shot two of his children, set his house and barn on fire, and burnt up all his grain and cattle. Thence, they proceeded to the house of Jacob Gerhart, where they killed one man, two women, and six children. Two of the children had slipped under the bed, one of which was burned; the other escaped, and ran a mile, to get to the people.
On the 24th of March, following, ten wagons went to Allemaengel, to bring a family, with their effects, away; and as they were returning, about three miles below one George Zeisloffs, they were fired upon by a number of Indians from both sides of the road, upoh which the wagoners left their wagons and ran into the woods, and the horses, frightened at the firing and terrible yelling of the In 'iarus, ran down a hill, and broke one of the wagons to pieces. The enemy killed George Zeisloff and his wife, a young man of twenty, a boy of twelve, also a .girl of fourteen years old, four of whom they scalped.*
Low Hill township is bounded on the north, by Heidelberg township ; on the east, by North Whitehall ; on the south, by Macunjy,and on the west, by Weissenberg township. The surface is hilly, and in some places rolling; the soil is principally white gravel; the state of agriculture is improving; many of the farms are rendered productive by a judicious course of crops, and strict attention to manuring. Lime, if judiciously applied, wouldgreatly improve this kind of soil.
This township is watered by Jordan creek, and several of ittributaries—such as Linn run, Crowner's run, which rises in Heidelbertownship, near its centre, and flows southwardly, through this township, anWillow run—all these streams afford mill seats.
(• Letter from Valentine Probst, to Jacob Levan,Esq., Feb. 16, 1756. See history of Berks county, p. 68,193, 194.)
The township contains ten grist mills, five saw mills,several oil mills, and two clover mills.
Clanseville is quite a neat little post villageconsisting of a few dwellings and a store. It is the only village in thtownship.
The population of the township, in 1820, was 703; in 1830,808; in 1840, 854. The county tax, for 1844, amounted to $238 35; state tax,$354 71. In 1843, $49 02 were paid for educating the poor.
Upper Macunjy. This township and Lower Macungy, have,within the last ten or twelve years, been divided. They were formerly known as Macunjytownship.
This township is bounded on the north-east, by South Whitehall; on the south, by Lower Macunjy; and on the north-west, by Weissenberg.The surface is generally very level; the soil limestone, carefully cultivated and abundantly productive. Both Upper and Lower Macungy are densely populated. This township alone, had, in 1840, a population of nearly 1800, and it may now exceed two thousand. It is drained by the Little Lehigh creek and its numerous tributaries. Shantz's Spring, the head of Cedar creek, is in this township.Cedar Spring is remarkable for its strength and uniformity, as to quantity ofwater. Only a few rods below its fountain, it turns a large flouring mill, Inits course, which is only three miles, it propels three mills, viz: Butt's, Knaus' and Martz's—these fall into Mr. Edieman's mill dam, on the Little Lehigh. North-west from Schantz's Spring, is a stream, which, after a course of three miles, sinks into the earth. It is conjectured by many, that this stream forms the Cedar creek fountain. The volume of water of Shantz's Spring is invariable in wet and dry, and it never freezes over.
There are two grist mills and two saw mills in this township;also several tanneries.
The population, in 1840, was 1,769. The amount of county tax, in 1844, $1,032 48; state tax, $1,616 32. In 1843, $68 35 were paid towards educating the poor.
Foglesville, a post village, at the junction of the Allentown and Millerstown road, nine miles from Allentown, consists of sixteen dwellings, one store, one tavern, a school house, a German Reformed and Lutheran church, situated in a rich and fertile country.
Trexlerstown, a neat post village, eight miles from Allentown, on the road to Kutztown, Berks county. It contains sixteen or eighteen dwellings, two taverns, one store, a Lutheran and German Reformed church. The country around it is well improved.
Lower Macunjy. This, and Upper Macunjy townships, were, until the last ten or twelve years, known as Macunjytownship. It is bounded on the north, by Upper Macungy; north-east, bySalisbury, (Salsberg;) on the south-east, by Upper Milford township; south-west,by Berks county. The surface of the township is level, and of the best limestone soil; well improved, and very productive; yields a rich recompense to the industrious farmer, for labor bestowed in tilling the soil. This part of Lehigh county is densely settled. Small as the territory of this county is, the population, in 1840, exceeded two thousand, and may now reach twenty-five hundred. The township is drained by the Little Lehigh creek. It has six grist mills, three saw mills, one oil mill, and five or six stores.
The population, in 1840, was 2,156. The county tax, for 1844,amounted to $1,257 47; state tax, $1,761 80. In 1843, there were $194 66 paidtowards educating the children of poor persons, besides a quota of $24 99,jointly paid by this and Upper Milford township.
Millerstown, or Millersville., is a postvillage, at the foot of the Lehigh Hills, or South mountain, on a small branch of the Lehigh, nine miles from Allentown. The village consists of about forty dwellings, three .taverns, four stores, a Lutheran and German Reformed church;also a "Free Hall," for all religious denominations.
This village is remarkable as one of the places distinguishedfor opposition to collecting a direct tax, by the federal government, in 1796,'99 "In den Schreckens Zeiten." Here Mr. Daniel Schwartz,and others, made resistance.*
Breinigsville, is a post village, on the road from Allentown to Reading, consisting of some half dozen of houses, one store,one tavern. Near it is an extensive iron ore mine. The ore is so highly charged with sulphuret of iron, as to be advantageously used for the manufacture of copperas. Considerable quantities of it are transported to Philadelphia, by canal, for this purpose.
Upper Milford is bounded on the north-east by Salisbury township and Upper Saucon, south-east by Bucks county, on the west byMontgomery and Berks counties, and north-west by Lower Macunjy township. Itforms almost a square. The surface of this township is considerably diversified, but generally hilly, and in some places very rugged or broken. being crossed by the South Mountain, sending forth spurs, especially towards the south. Iron ore abounds on the mountain. The soil is principally gravel and red shale, and upon the whole, pretty well cultivated, and more than ordinarily productive; it is watered by a branch of the Perkiomen and Upper Saucon creeks. The north branch of the Perkiomen rising in this township, flows by a southern course, (uniting with the east branch in Perkiomen township, Montgomery county) for about thirty miles, through Montgomery county, and falls into the river Schuylkill, above Pawling’s Ford, six miles above Norristown. Upper Saucon creek, rising in this township, and running north-eastwardly, falls into the Lehigh river on the southside, about two miles below Freemansburg, in Northampton county. These streams afford many good mill seats. This township contains seven grist mills, six saw mills, one fulling mill, one oil mill, two powder mills, several tanneries, and a few distilleries, and one furnace, owned by Messrs. Hunter and Miller. There are two churches in this township, and several villages.
(• See Verhoer von John Fries,&c. p. 282.)
Scheimersville, is a post village, consisting of fived wellings, one tavern and a store.
Dillinger’s. Here is a post office, a few dwellings, a store and a tavern.
The population of this township was, in 1820, 3,416, in 1830,2,829, in 1840, 3,071. Theamount of county tax levied in 1844, was $l,548 44;state tax,$2,293 91. In 1843, $195 97,* were paid for educating children of poor persons.
Weissenburg township is bounded on the northeast byLow Hill township, on the south-east by Macunjy, and on the south-west by Maxatany township in Berks county, and north-west by Linn township. The surface is hilly, and in some places broken; soil gravelly, but pretty well improved.The assessed value of land ranges from $20 to $25 per acre.
This township is drained by Jordan creek and its tributaries, Willow run, and Linn run, which afford considerable water power. There are here six grist mills and three saw mills. There are two churches in this township ;one is located in the Forks of Willow run.
Mount Pleasant, the only village in the township, is six miles from Foglesville, consisting of several dwellings, one store and a tavern.
The population of this township in 1820, was 1,175; in 1830,1,285; 1840, 1,427. The amount of county tax levied in 1844, was $425 54; statetax, $586 10. In 1843, $92 94, were paid towards educating the poor.
(•Besides a quota of (84 99, paid by Lower Macunjy and Upper Milford.)
The inhabitants of this township, with those of Berks county,in this region, were repeatedly alarmed by the incursions of the hostile Indians during the Preach and Indian war, from 1755 to 1763. Their hopes and fears were alternately excited; for the Indians committed several murders through this and adjacent townships, immediately north.
In 1798 and 1799, when the inhabitants of Northampton county opposed the collecting of a direct tax by the general government, the fears ofthe people of this township were again greatly excited.
Upper Saucon township is bounded on the northeast byLower Saucon, Northampton county, east by Bucks county, south-west by UpperMilford township, and north-west by Salisbury township. The surface is diversified; the Lehigh hills or South mountain occupies the northern part, and its spurs extend to the southern boundary. The valleys are limestone, and the whole under cultivation. The farms are highly improved, and the houses and barns, as viewed from the " Mammoth Rock," in Salisbury township, make an imposing appearance. Iron ore abounds in the hills and mountains. It isdrained by the Saucon creek, which runs through it in an eastern direction,towards the Lehigh river. This stream affords several mill seats. This township contains six grist mills, eight saw mills, three oil mills, one clover mill, and several tanneries.
The Spring House and Bethlehem turnpike road passes north and south through it. There are several churches in this township. Lately a cave has been discovered called "Erdman's Cave." It has been but partially explored. It is said there is a fine stream of water in it.
Freystown, or Freysburg, consisting of a few dwellings and a store, on the turnpike, near the south-east boundary,is the only village in this township.
The population in 1820, was 1,642 ; in 1830, 1,905 ; in 1840,2,072. The amount of county tax levied for 1844, was $667 68 ; state tax, $98683. In 1843, $162 14, were paid towards educating paupers.
Salisbury township, (some times written Saltzberg or Salsberg,) is bounded on the north by Northampton township and the Lehigh river, on the east by Lower Saucon, Northampton county, south-east • byUpper Saucon, south-west by Upper Milford and Lower Macunjy, and north-west byWhitehall township. The surface of the country is rolling; the greater part limestone soil of the first rate quality, and very well cultivated. The South mountain, in which iron ore abounds, runs along its south-eastern boundary, at the foot of which is a small village, called Smithsville, about two miles south-east from, Allentown. This township is drained by the Little Lehigh creek,and one of its tributaries, which, propel, in the township, three grist mills and two saw mills
Numerous and interesting as the natural curiosities in this country are, there is none that so amply repays the adventurer as the Big, orMammoth Rock, on the Lehigh hills, or South mountain, in-this township.It is about three miles south-east, from Alien-town, and a jaunt to the hills forms a pleasant hour's walk. The Rock is easily ascended, though elevated a thousand or twelve hundred feet above the surrounding country. The spectator,while standing on this rupic eminence, has a commanding view of one of the most variegated sceneries imaginable. As far as the eye can reach, except on the north, where the (vision is bounded by the Blue mountain, are spread before the eye, well cultivated farms, dotted with buildings; and the scene is greatly enlivened by the limpid stream of the Lehigh, as it winds its way down the Kittatinny valley. On the south, east and west, lie before you as a lawn, Saucon,with its rich limestone farms. Language fails to deliniate the scenery with any degree of graphic accuracy.
The population of this township, in 1820, was 1,165 ; in1830, 1,342 ; in 1840, l,438. The amount of county tax levied for 1844, was $84480; state tax, $1,316 03.
Emaus is a post village at the foot of the South mountain, built on one street, and is about five miles south-west from Allentown. The town contains about twenty-five dwellings, a store and church. The following, touching this place, is front the pen of the Twelve Views ofthe churches, schools, &c., &c., of the United Brethren in America:
‘This settlement (Emaus,) where a congregation of the United Brethren was regularly organized in 1747, is situated near the Lehigh mountains, eight miles from Bethlehem.
"The first place of worship was built in 1742, the second in 1766, both of wood, and the third, which is the present church, in1833. The present number of souls belonging to this congregation is one hundred and thirty, (in 1836) of whom eighty are communicants."
Northampton township. This is a small, township which surrounds the borough of Allentown. Portions of the surface is generally undulating,but the greater part is level, the soil is limestone, and very highly improved. When speaking of Allentown,* the springs &c., are noticed. In 1830, the population was 213, and 1848, 293. In 1844, the amount of county tax levied, was $179 69, and state tax, $248 89.
Allentown.* This town was laid out prior to 1752, .byWilliam Allen, Esq., Chief Justice of the Province of Pennsylvania. Mr. Allen,it appears, was a great friend to the Penn family, from whom he derived his grants of land. Governor John Penn married his daughter. James Allen,son of the proprietor of Allentown, residing in Philadelphia, became heir to the site of this town. He died about 1782, leaving the property to two sons, James and William, and three daughters, viz: Mrs. Greenleaf, Mrs. Tilghmanand Mrs. Livingston. Several of the heirs still reside here.
(• See Allentown.)
(•The substance of lhi« article is from the pen of Robert Wright,Esq. It appeared originally in Haaard'a Pa. Reg., Vol. XIII, p. 386.)
This place bore the name of Allentown, till 1811, whenit was called the Borough of Northampton, but since changed. It is situated at the junction of the Jordan and Little Lehigh creeks, about half a mile from the Lehigh river. It is six miles south-west from Bethlehem, eighteen miles south-west from Easton, and fifty-five miles north-west from Philadelphia.
It is one of the oldest settlements on the Lehigh river, and in the different wars of America, was the scene of many a brave and bloody deed. It was here that Colonel James Bird displayed such heroism in the early wars with the Indians. It was here, during the Revolution, that the bells which "chime so merril" on Christ Church in Philadelphia, were concealed by the Americans, and it was here, at a later period of our national existence, that the insurrection in which the notorious John Fries bore so conspicuous a part, was fomented, and happily for us all, smothered in its birth.
Inhabited by a few wealthy and unenterprising Germans, and cut off for many years from the different post routes, by the influence of the neighboring towns, it remained inactive a long time. Its great elevation too, rendering it. difficult to procure the necessary supply of water, had the effect of retarding its progress in the march of improvement, and it remained, as atfirst, "unnoticed and unknown," until the year 1811, when, by the division of Northampton county, it became the seat of justice of Lehigh county,was incorporated by an act of the Legislature, passed March 18, 1811, and calledNorthampton Borough. By a smilar act in 1838, the name Allentown.was again restored. Since it has become the county seat, the town has improved rapidly, and bids fair to eclipse its neighbors in trade and wealth, as it has already in point of beauty.
The form of the town is square. Its streets are at right angles, and the public square in the centre adds much to its appearance. It contains a large court house and public houses of hewn limestone, a spacious prison of the same material; five churches, German Reformed, Lutheran, Presbyterian, Methodist Episcopal, Evangelical Association, and one for all denominations, called "the Free Hall," in which temperance lectures are occasionally delivered; an Academy incorporated March 18, 1814, to which the state gave two thousand dollars ; a boarding school, a splendid and spacious building, formerly occupied as the Homoeopathic college. Passing, it might be remarked, this institution never went into full operation, as it was designed it should, under two eminent professors residing in Philadelphia. There is one foundry in the borough, owned by Mr. Freeburn; Messrs.Krause & Probst's is contiguous to the borough; several machine shops, two appothecaries, twenty-six stores, eleven taverns, and six coach manufactories.
A bank, called The Northampton Hank was established here in 1814, with a capital of $123,365. It became completely bankrupt in 1843.The town is well supplied with good, fresh water, from Worman’s sping, at the foot of the hill on which it is built. A pump, worked by a water wheel turned bythe stream, raises the water into a reservoir in the highest part of the town,from which it is distributed by pipes laid through the streets. The water isforced up to the height of one hundred and sixty feet. The water company was formed in 1828.
There are several Newspapers published in this borough: DerFrieden's Bole und Lecha, Northampton, Bucks und Montgomery Counties Anzeiger,by Blamer & Bush, is neutral in politics. It has readied its thirty-second volume. Der Lecha Patriot und Northampton Democrat, byReuben Guth, a whig paper. It has been in existence seventeen years. DerUnabhaengische Republikaner, by James Wilson, Democratic. It is the oldest paper here. The Lehigh Bulletin, by John Royer, Democratic.
The present population may exceed 3000 ; in 1830, it was 1,544; in 1840, 2,493.
It is worthy of notice, to show the salubrity of the air ofthis place, that during the prevalence of the yellow fever of 1793 and '99, and the cholera in 1832 and '33, there was not a single case of either, in thisplace, that in any way resembled those diseases.
On the main road to Bethlehem, in view of the town, is abridge across the Lehigh river, erected in 1841. The previous one, a chain bridge, was swept away by the great freshet of January, 1841. There is also a stone bridge across the Jordan creek, consisting of eighteen arches. It is about eight hundred feet long. It was completed in 1837. at a cost of $10,000.
The numerous springs, namely: Worman's, Martin's, Smith's andHelfrich's, are all worthy of being visited by the traveller. The Big or MammothRock, spoken of when describing Salisbury township, should by all means bevisited. It is only three miles from the borough, and will amply repay the adventurer for his walk.
Lehigh Port, contiguous to Allentown, contains between fifty and sixty dwellings, one tavern, one store and six storing houses.Below, is Greenleafs Island, owned by Mr. Butz of Philadelphia. This island, under the care of a New Jerseyman, supplies the good people of the borough with melons, sweet potatoes, &c.
In 1841, this place sustained considerable injury from the January freshet. The following is from the Lehigh Bulletin, viz :
After the intense cold weather we had the beginning of lastweek—on Wednesday and Thursday we had rain, with a warm southern wind, that brought on a sudden thaw. The rivers and streams, in those parts, rose rapidly—rose to an unprecedented height. The Jordan and Little Lehigh appearnot to have been as high as at the great freshet, in 1839. Owing to the immense height, of the Big Lehigh, the back water was several feet higher than two years ago. The Little Lehigh was about three feet higher, over Mr. Martz's tanyard, than before. The Jordan ran on the large stone bridge over it.
The freshet, in the Big Lehigh, was tremendous. The water wasabout twenty feet above low-water mark below the dam; and was about three feetabove the highest point on the Big Island. Such a flood is not recollected by our oldest inhabitants.
Our excellent bridge over the Big Lehigh, and toll house, aregone ; three frame houses of Mr. D. Kleckner, between his tavern and the bridge, are gone. The gate-keeper's family have got away, but saved nothing out of the house. The other families saved more or less, but sustained heavy losses.The store houses have been considerably injured at the basin, and several of our merchants, in not having their goods removed, have met with heavy losses. Alarge quantity of lumber, and a number of boats and scows were lost. About two thousand tons of coal are lost. The navigation dam has but little, if any,injury done to it. The canal has sustained some injury.
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