HISTORY OF MIFFLIN COUNTY
From Franklin Ellis'
History of That Part of the Susquehanna and Juniata Valleys
Embraced in the Counties of Mifflin, Juniata, Perry, Union and Snyder. Philadelphia, 1886.
THE BOROUGH OF McVEYTOWN.
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THE settlement of this place was begun by Samuel Holliday in 1755, but it was not until 1762 that he settled permanently and not until 1795 that the town of Waynesburg (now McVeytown) was laid out. In the latter year John McVey lived adjoining and above the Holliday tract, and it was by him the land was owned and the town founded. In the enlargement of the borough, in 1842, the Holliday mill property was embraced in its limits.
Samuel, Adam, John and William Holliday, and two sisters, Elizabeth and Nancy, the latter of whom became the wife of Andrew Bratton, emigrated to this country about 1745 and located on the "Manor," in Lancaster County, and later moved to Conococheague, in what is now Franklin County, from which place John removed to Path Valley, where he lived and died. Adam and William took up land at the site of the town of Hollidaysburg, and from him that borough took its name. Samuel Holliday and Andrew Bratton early in 1755, and just after the new purchase of the Indians, went out into that region to search for lands on which to settle. After deciding upon the land, they made application to the Land-Office, then in Philadelphia, and in the year 1755 received their warrants - Bratton in what is now Bratton township, and Holliday at what is now McVeytown and vicinity.
At the time of their settlement all the surrounding region of territory was in Cumberland County and in the unorganized district north and west of Lack township, which then embraced all of what is now Juniata County.
Upon this tract which Holliday located he built a log house at the site of Troxell's tannery, intending to settle there, but soon after, the Indian troubles, consequent upon the defeat of Braddock in Western Pennsylvania, broke out, and the fact that the Indians were attacking and murdering the white settlers wherever found in the vicinity led Holliday and Bratton, with all others who had settled in the new purchase, to flee for safety to some of the larger settlements, mostly south of the Blue Ridge. It was not until about 1762 that the troubles were so far abated as to warrant a safe return to their lands from which they had fled. At this time they brought with them their families.
Samuel Holliday erected, soon after his
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return, a grist-mill on the site of Troxell's tannery office and butcher-shop, on the Juniata River, at the mouth of Mattawana Creek. The dam was below the present sand-works, the race was on the upper or south side of the creek, and where the road now passes down and over the canal.
The township of Derry was erected in July, 1767, and embraced all of what is now Mifflin County. The first assessment of the township was made in 1768, and at that time the only grist-mill and saw-mill assessed in the township (now Mifflin County) was the property of Samuel Holliday. His nearest neighbor was Andrew Bratton, his brother-in-law, who lived up the river on the opposite side. Holliday made application to the Land office and obtained a warrant, dated October 25, 1774, for one hundred acres, and one on May 7, 1788, for two hundred and eighty acres, and, April 5, 1792, one for twenty-five acres. This land was adjoining his other property below.
The proprietaries issued a warrant October 13, 1760, requiring the surveyor-general to survey, for their own use, all the islands in the several rivers and creeks in the province. In accordance with that order, the island in the Juniata River, opposite McVeytown, was surveyed August 17, 1767, and is described as "at a place called the Mathawanna Cabins, opposite to Holliday's mill in the county of Cumberland." It contained at that time thirty-eight acres and fifty perches, with allowance for roads.
The island was granted to Samuel Holliday, by patent, August 17, 1770, for which he paid sixty-one pounds and ten shillings, with a quit-rent of one half-penny, to be paid upon the 1st day of March in every year. The island at present contains about thirty-five acres, and belongs to the Dull Estate.
John McVey, the founder of Waynesburg (now McVeytown), in 1787 located a tract containing two hundred acres, adjoining Holliday's land, and along the river above. He built a log house on property now belonging to A. Lefford. James Stackpole had settled below him, and on the hill, a year previously. Hector and George Galbraith, also adjoining his property inland, had settled in 1785. Others had settled farther away much earlier, of which mention is made in Oliver township.
In 1790, Samuel Holliday was assessed on two hundred acres of land, three horses, three cows, one negro and a grist-mill. In March of that year a petition was presented to the court of Mifflin County (then just organized), asking for a road from Samuel Holliday's mill to intersect the road leading from Summerville's mill to the State road leading to Siding Hill. This was probably the first road cut from the place now McVeytown. Holliday, soon after this, established a ferry across the river, below the island. He operated the mills and ferry at this place until his death, in 1882. He married Sarah Campbell, who survived him. They had seven children - John, James, Adam, Michael, Samuel, Rebecca and Jane; the last-named died before her father and was the wife of Thomas Provines. The property, at the time of his death, consisted of the island of thirty-eight acres (now thirty-five) and two hundred acres adjoining the village of Waynesburg, a merchant grist-mill, saw-mill, distillery, dwelling house, barn and two bearing orchards. It was described as being on a stream where boats "can load and go down the river Juniata, and was also on the road from Harrisburg to Pittsburgh." The property was advertised for sale September 26th in that year. The mills were sold to Samuel Holliday, a son, and Andrew Bratton, June 1, 1813, who operated them for several years, when Andrew Bratton sold his interest and moved to the Bratton farm. The grist-mill was abandoned before the canal was dug, and a new one was erected by Samuel Holliday, on the opposite side of the creek and above, which was used by him for many years. In 1867 it was owned by C.& C.P. Dull, who in that year built an addition to the east end and fitted it up for manufacture of straw-board and wrapping-paper, and operated the mill and paper-mill until its destruction by fire, June 1, 1870. The ruins and stack are still standing. The old saw-mill stood near the canal and has long since disappeared. The Holliday property passed to James Crisswell, and is now mostly owned by the Dull estate.
The site of McVeytown was taken up by John McVey, who received a warrant for two
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hundred acres of land, dated July 9, 1787, on the Juniata River, adjoining Samuel Holliday. In 1790 he was assessed on two hundred and fifty acres and his brother Enoch on one hundred acres, his son William on fifty acres. The place is mentioned as Waynesburg in road and other records as early as 1795. In 1797 Enoch McVey bought of his brother a lot in "Waynesburg" which John bought again, August 18, 1800, for six hundred dollars. The village plot was laid out about 1795, and the lot Enoch bought was the south part of the stone house now occupied as a grocery and dwelling, long known as the Swanzey property. Enoch, soon after the sale, went West.
John McVey married Sarah, the daughter of Matthew Wakefield, who settled below on the river before 1768. Their children were William, John, Rachel, Sarah, Eliel, Elijah and Mary.
William married Rebecca, the daughter of George Mitchell. He built a grist-mill and fulling-mill on the run at the upper end of the town about 1807, which was destroyed by fire about 1825, after which he removed to a part of the Mitchell farm, where he died.
John McVey, Jr., married Margaret, the daughter of Benjamin Walters, and settled in the village. In 1823 he built Couch Hall on the Diamond, which he opened as a tavern, and where he died in 1826. His daughter, Mrs. Couch, now owns and occupies the house.
Rachel McVey married Joseph Jacobs, who was a tanner, and built a tannery on the McVey farm outside of the limits of the village. Later Joseph and Urie Jacobs purchased the McVey farm of the heirs of John McVey.
Sarah McVey married Major Lewis Bond, who came from Northumberland and lived at McVeytown for several years before the death of his father-in-law, and after which he settled up the estate and moved to a farm near Newton Hamilton, where his wife died, after which he moved West.
Eliel settled on a farm above the place known as Frogtown. He owned property also in the village. Elijah settled on a farm above Newton Hamilton and died there. His father in his later days resided with him and died there about 1824, over seventy-seven years of age.
Mary McVey, the youngest child, was born in 1799 and is now living in McVeytown, a short distance from where she was born. She married Royal Humphrey, who was for many years engaged with the canal company.
In the year 1800 there were but few buildings at the place called Waynesburg. Benjamin Walters owned a lot on Front Street, and in 1818 he purchased a lot of John McVey, on the river side of Front Street (now Water), between the river bridge and the hotel. He built on the latter lot a log dwelling-house down in the hollow and a frame warehouse. From this warehouse grain was loaded into boats by means of a spout. His son, John, succeeded him, and built a stone warehouse and carried on the business for many years. Benjamin Walters had lived on the farm, one mile west of Waynesburg, previous to his residence in the place, and in his old age returned to the valley and built the house now owned and occupied by Peter Myers, where his wife died. His daughter, Margaret married John McVey, Jr., at whose house he died.
Of the early settlers in McVeytown who exerted a marked influence upon the place, and whose descendants have also been and are still in business, was Casper Dull, who came to Wayne township about 1783. Early records show that, August 27, 1739, Casper, Christian and Sebastian Dull sailed from Rotterdam in the ship "Samuel," Hugh Percy, Captain, and landed at Philadelphia. They were natives of Mainz, on the Rhine, in the Grand Duchy of Hesse Darmstadt, Germany. Casper, the father of the one who came to this section, settled in Montgomery County, near the old Trappe Tavern, and it is thought he was at one time the landlord of that famous hostelry. In this locality he lived and died. Of his children, we have the names of Christian, Casper and Abraham. Christian Dull was soldier of the Revolution and commanded a company in Colonel John Moore's battalion of Philadelphia County Associators, which was in service at Brandywine and Germantown. He lived
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and died at the Trappe, and left a large family. Abraham Dull settled in Plainfield township, Northampton County, where he took up a large tract of land. He was an ensign in Colonel Arthur St. Clair's (Second Pennsylvania) battalion of the Continental Line, and served in the Canada campaign of 1776. He was a man of prominence and influence in the notable events following and struggle for independence. The other son, Casper Dull, was born June 11, 1748, and was also a soldier of the Revolution. He was cornet (second lieutenant) of the Light Dragoons for the county of Philadelphia, connected with the associated battalions; subsequently promoted lieutenant, November 20, 1777, and then captain, September 10, 1778. Like the majority of the officers of the army of the Revolution, he came out the poorer, impoverishing himself by liberal advance of the money and supplies to the men of his command and the depreciation in Continental money. After the close of the war he removed to the valley of the Juniata, locating at Waynesburg (now McVeytown), and afterwards to a farm near Newton Hamilton. After the death of his wife he removed to the residence of his son, in Oliver township, Mifflin County, Pa., where he died July 23, 1829. Casper Dull married, September 20, 1774, Hannah Matieu (or Matthews), of Huguenot ancestry. She was born February 21, 1758, and died February 21, 1826 near Newtown Hamilton. Their children were as follows:
i. Catherine, b. 1775; m. Benjamin Walters
ii. Daniel, b. 1777; m. Elizabeth Stanley.
iii. Elizabeth, b. 1779; m. Casper Casner.
iv. John, b. 1781; m. Margaret Beatty.
v. Hannah C., b. 1786; m. Michael Ruth.
vi. Sybil, b. 1788; m. Abraham Copeland.
vii. Casper, b. December 25th, 1791; m. Jane Junkin.
viii. Mary, b. 1795; m. Isaiah Vanzandt.
ix. George, b. 1797; m. Lydia Macklin Postlethwaite.
x. Benjamin Matieu, b. 1799; m. Nancy Junkin.
xi. Joseph, b. 1804; m. 1, Jane Barkley; 2, Jane Laird; 3, Jane Price.
Casper Dull, the subject of our sketch, obtained the ordinary education acquired in the country schools of this day, and was brought up as a farmer. At an early age he engaged in the transportation business on the Juniata and Susquehanna, and in that, as in the after-events of his busy life, were exemplified the most untiring energy and an ability of high character. When the State commenced its great system of internal improvements, Mr. Dull became a contractor, and constructed some of the most important portions of the Pennsylvania Canal. Among his warm personal friends were David R. Porter, subsequently Governor of the State, and James Clark. During the term of the latter as canal commissioner, he appointed Mr. Dull to take charge of a large portion of the canals. In this, as in every other public trust, he was an efficient and faithful officer. He afterwards retired to his farms, and the remainder of his days were passed in managing them and several mills which he owned. He died, September 22, 1874. Casper Dull married, in 1815, Jane Junkin, daughter of James Junkin, of Junkin's Mill. She was descended from William Junkin, Sr., and his wife Elizabeth Wallace, emigrants from County Antrim, Ireland, and the ancestors of those remarkable divines, Dr. George and Dr. D. X. Junkin. Mrs. Dull was born June 14, 1798, and died April 16, 1885, at McVeytown, and with her husband buried in the graveyard at that place. She was a devoted wife and mother, beloved and respected for her many good qualities and charities. They left eight children, all of whom are living.
John Dougherty, now living at Mount Union, Huntingdon County, was a native of Waynesburg, where he was born July 25, 1803. His father, Edward Dougherty, emigrated to this country and settled for a time in Carlisle, and married a daughter of James Stackpole, of that place. Her brother, in 1786, had settled upon a tract of land east of Waynesburg. Mr. Dougherty thus writes of his early recollections:
"My father was one of the three that first built a house in Waynesburg (now McVeytown). Born near Lach Neigh, in Ireland, when twenty-five years of age he migrated to America, and in 1795 put in an appearance near Waynesburg, stopping with a family named Holliday, owners of a grist and saw-mill, with
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lands adjoining, and Holliday's Island, a ferry and shad-fishery, etc. This was then the most westerly grist-mill on the Juniata River. Grain grown west of the summit of the Allegheny Mountains was sent on pack-horses to Holliday's mill, to be ground into flour, and then carried back again. My mother and her brother, James Stackpole, were born at Carlisle, Pa.,; lived one mile east of Waynesburg, Pa., where father built and owned the first stone dwelling-house. My uncle married Dorcas Elizabeth Holt, whose ancestors came from England. He died when his third son was a child. His three sons married girls of German parentage; hence the blood of three nationalities flow in the veins of the present generation, who trace their genealogy to the Holts of England and the nobility or Ireland. One of the present streets in Dublin is called Stackpole Street. Certain of their ancestors migrated to France. One of the descendants is a cardinal at Rome, in Italy. My father married Margaret Stackpole about 1796. They were married by a Russian prince, who, in abjuring the Greek schism, the Platonism of Photian relative to the procession of the Holy Ghost, forfeited lands in Russia equal in extent to the State of Pennsylvania together with princely honors.
"Father Galitzen founded a Catholic colony at Loretto (now Cambria County). His pastorate included an extensive territory east and west of what is now Cambria County. At that period products of the Juniata and Susquehanna Valleys were shipped on arks, rafts and keel-boats, eastward to Columbia and Port Deposit, Md. Keel-boats were propelled up stream by poles and muscular power, (for which I propose to substitute steam-power). Baltimore merchants supplied all Western Pennsylvania with manufactured articles and many of the conveniences of civilized life. Dry-goods, iron and salt were carried on pack-horse westwardly via Fort Loudon, Fort Shirly and Drake's Ferry. Baltimore City (the metropolitan see of North America) sent Catholic missionaries, via the water-courses, through Shade Gap and Jack's Narrows, to west of the Alleghenies. Father Galitzen and other Catholic missionaries, when going from and retiring to Baltimore City, were wont to offer up the holy sacrifice at a station in Black Valley (Newry), along this route. Certain aristocratic ladies remained standing when the great mystery was being accomplished, although Dr. Galitzen bade them, in the name of Christ, then present on them kneel in the devil's name, when every knee bent! Again, when about to address a fashionable congregation (many ladies wearing flowers in their bonnets) said he did not know whether it was flower garden or a Christian congregation he was about to address. At the beginning of this century hotels, to accommodate the trading public and others, were quite numerous. Caspar Dull (grandfather of the Messrs. Dull now living) kept a small tavern at the northeast of Waynesburg. John Culbertson kept a larger tavern one mile west thereof, and James Stackpole a hotel one mile east of Waynesburg. George Galbraith, one of the owners of the first stage-line built the hotel now kept by John A. Ross in McVeytown.
"It was said that one crooked shilling paid for two barrels of whiskey. When Mr. Culbertson visited Mr. Dull's he would spend this shilling in treating such persons as might be present, and when Caspar Dull visited John Culbertson he would pay back this shilling to John Culbertson for whiskey; metallic money was not generally used in making exchanges. The farmer exchanged rye for whiskey; laboring men paid in work; the hunter exchanged furs for powder and lead; shad in the spring, wheat after harvest and eels in the fall helped to regulate exchanges. Corn-huskings, chopping-frolics, scutching flax, making cider, boiling apple-butter, fulling blankets (i.e., knitting-parties), quiltings, wood-hauling and many other kinds of work, followed by dancing at night, enabled these people to live pleasantly. School-masters were paid in work or produce, and boarded alternately with their scholars. I remember when there were six or more distilleries in Wayne township. Elections and military trainings were held at Waynesburg; much liquor was drank and many rough-and-tumble fights followed. A few log school-houses but no meeting-houses were built until about 1812. The Tunkers worshipped in Hensel's barn, two miles northwest of McVeytown. Occasionally a Presbyterian minister would preach in a school-house, but the people in general were indifferent of this subject. Several of the most learned were deists. Tom. Paine's Voltaire's, Hume's Rousseau's and Lord Bolingbroke's works were common in the libraries of the learned, whose opinions were accepted by a large number of the unlearned, although the Westminster Catechism was taught in many of the schools. The Dunkers, an offshoot of the monastic orders, retained the principle of association, bought fertile lands, and retained them, whilst many of those who professed no religious belief sold their lands and migrated westward.
Edward Dougherty was a tailor, and in 1821, opened a tavern on the Diamond, when the turnpike was building from Blairsville to Harrisburg. He died in 1842 at his home. His son John remained at McVeytown and engaged in mercantile business until 1831, when he went to Hollidaysburg as a contractor with James Stackpole. They graded the summit-level of Allegheny Portage road and Incline Plane No. 6, and the first incline from Hollidaysburg. He invented, in 1834, the section boats, the first one passing over in October of that year. In April, 1848, he moved to Mount
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Union, which he laid out, and where he still resides. Rosanna, daughter of Edward Dougherty, married Dr. Elijah Davis, of McVeytown, who for many years kept the tavern on the Diamond.
George Galbraith, whose father (Hector Galbraith) settled northwest of Waynesburg in 1785, came from the farm where he lived in 1805, and built a tavern on the corner of Water and John Streets, opposite the present hotel, where he resided for several years and kept the tavern in the early days, where General John Bratton, Colonel William Bratton, John Culbertson, John Vance, Samuel Holliday, John McVey, William Junkin and Caspar Dull, who were the leading men of the township were in the habit of gathering. In 1808 George Galbraith became one of the party that organized the Juniata State Company, who put on a line of stages over the part of the route from Philadelphia through to Pittsburgh. Mr. Galbraith, in later years, built the present hotel now kept by John A. Ross, and opened a tavern and a store, which he kept until his death, in 1822.
He had two wives, - one son and five daughters by each. The children by his last wife were George (who lived and died upon the home farm, now in part owned by his daughter, Mrs. Retta Clarke), Elizabeth (Mrs. John Haman), Juliana (Mrs. William Swanzey), Jane (Mrs. Ketchuff, of Chester County), Nancy (Mrs. Augustine Wakefield) and Hannah (Mrs. Michael Crisswell).
Another of the early settlers of Waynesburg was John Haman. He was born in Ireland in 1786, came to this country, and landed at New Castle, Del. In 1798 he came to Sherman's Valley, and in 1804 to Tuscarora Valley. In 1806 he began clerking in a store for William Bell, of Perryville (now Port Royal, Juniata County). Bell moved to Mifflintown the next year, and Haman remained with him until 1811, when Bell, with Haman, began business in Waynesburg. They soon took in partnership Adam Holliday, son of Samuel, and continued until July 24, 1813, when the partnership was dissolved, and Haman continued. He soon after became associated with John McVey Jr., which firm continued until McVey's death, in 1826. On December 23, 1819, John Haman married Elizabeth, a daughter of George Galbraith. He continued in the mercantile business until his death, January 29, 1866, and left six children, of whom Hannah became the wife of William Macklin, who became a merchant in McVeytown in 1847, and lived there until his death, and whose sons continue the business. Mrs. Macklin is still living at McVeytown.
Soon after the opening of the store by Haman & Bell, James Law and David Lusk, Jr., opened a store and continued till November 25, 1815, when Law retired and Lusk continued. He afterwards kept a tavern in the present hotel till his death, and his widow, Catherine, continued.
It will be borne in mind that the mills of Samuel Holliday and William McVey were in operation in the early years, and, with the arrival of the stage-coach semi-weekly, the tavern and the stores, Waynesburg was quite a centre of attraction for the surrounding country. The village doctor also came to the place about 1810, Dr. Elijah Davis being first. An account of the physicians will be found in the medical chapter of the General History.
In the year 1829 Samuel Troxell came to the town from Union County (now Snyder) and in 1831 erected a tannery on the lot (now vacant) adjoining and below the hotel. Samuel Myers soon became associated with him and they continued until October 9, 1850, when Myers retired and Horning (Albert) & Troxell were operating. Changes were made and at one time Myers & Rife and Myers & Johnson were in possession. On February 22, 1864, the tannery was destroyed by fire and not rebuilt. Samuel Troxell, in 1862, erected the present tannery on the site of the old Holliday log house, with thirty-five vats and ten leeches and pools. His son, Samuel M. Troxell, assumed the business in 1874, operated it for five years, from which time it has been idle.
Jacob Goodling, who married a daughter of Benjamin Walters, about 1830 started a tannery which later was owned by James Hoods and was abandoned after 1842.
In 1825 Joseph Jacobs erected a tannery on the McVey farm, which he continued until
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1840, when it was rented by John Robb and soon after discontinued.
Colonel Anthony Elton was here about 1806 as a blacksmith, and had a shop on the river-side of Front, or Water Street, between the bridge and the hotel, which he continued as long as he lived. He was the first postmaster and was succeeded in the business by his sons, Anthony and Revel, and by Revel Elton in the post-office. The latter remained here many years and went West.
Richard Miles, before 1830, was keeping store in Galbraith's tavern building and soon after that time moved up on the Diamond. About 1842 he moved to Bellefonte.
Michael Norton, before 1830, opened a wagon-maker's shop a short distance south of the hotel, which was discontinued about 1840.
Soon after the canal was completed through the place James Crisswell moved to Waynesburg from his farm below the town, and built a house on Canal Street, where he died June 28, 1874. He also built a brick store on John Street, below the diamond, and a warehouse on the canal near his house. His sons - Michael and John V., - were engaged in business with him. He was chosen associate justice in 1837, to succeed Judge John Oliver. His sons purchased the Brookland Furnace in 1840, and in 1843, James Crisswell built Ellen Forge, at the lower part of the town and beyond the borough limits.
About 1840, General John Ross and Attila Price erected a foundry now owned by Reuben and John Myers, which they continued until November 9, 1843, when Ross retired and George W. Lyon became associated with Mr. Price; they continued until 1847, when it passed to Ross & Clark, and the next year was run by James Wilder and B. A. Bradley; later, by J. W. Pincin & Son for ten or twelve years, until 1884, when it passed to the present owners.
The first brick house erected in the village was built by George Dull, now owned by Joseph R. Bratton. Dr. Rothrock built his residence in 1837, and in 1842, John Haman was assessed on two brick houses; Samuel Brown, John Ross, Dr. L. G. Snowden, John A. Steel, Samuel Troxall and Samuel Myers were each assessed on a brick house.
The following are the names and locations of business interests of the village in 1836: Martin Stehley, tailor, on Main Street, a few doors north of Market; Nathaniel Wilson, cabinetmaker, on Main, north of Market; John Walters, meat-store, on Water Street; James Criswel, brick store, on John Street, store-house on canal; James Cooper, merchant, store on the corner of Diamond, before occupied by John Dougherty and Dr. Andrew P. Linn. In 1846 Cooper built the brick building corner of Water and John Streets, in which he kept store a number of years; it was later occupied by Dr. J. A. Swain as a drug-store and office, now by drugstore of James Forgy.
George W. Coulter kept a blacksmith-shop on Main Street, opposite Dr. Rothrock's residence; George Dull had a small store-house on the canal; William D. Davis and Thomas Rambler, cabinet-makers, were located on the south end of Main Street; Rambler later moved to Altoona; Edward Dougherty kept tavern on the Diamond; Elijah Davis, his son-in-law, kept store in the frame part of Dougherty's hotel, and after Dougherty's death, kept the hotel; Hardy, Millan & Hartzler kept store in the south end of Galbraith's hotel (now torn down); later William Hardy built the brick house now owned by Samuel M. Troxall, and Hardy bought the interest of his partners and continued the business alone.
Randolph Wooden, a blacksmith, in 1836 opened a shop on Water Street, south of the hotel, which he continued several years; David Corkle entered the shop as an apprentice, and worked there until he purchased the shop, in 1851, and continued until 1883. It is now carried on by John Berryman.
Soon after the canal was built, James Crisswell built a boat-yard and dry-dock on the canal near his store-house, where he built several boats. Lindley Hoops, about 1838 at the south end of town, had a boat-yard on the west side of the canal, and William Jeffries on the east side. One of the boat-houses is now used a dwelling on Water Street, a short distance from the old boat-yard. In 1842 Frederick Hiney was making brick in a yard with John Barlett.
The business of the town in 1843 was carried
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on by the following persons: G. W. Brehman, drugs; C. & S. Crisswell, William Hardy, John Walters and John A. Steele & Co., merchants; B. Reilly, hatter; A. S. Fichthorn, tailor; Caspar Van Zandt, Joseph H. Robinson and James G. McCoy, saddlers and harness-makers; Ross and Price, iron-founders; Daniel Schreiner, wagon and plough manufacturer; Richard S. Brimmer, tin and sheet-iron; Albert Horning, Samuel Troxall, tanners; Joseph George, George Bartel and William Swartz, boot and shoemakers; Hamilton & Taylor, George Sweyer, chair-makers; J. C. Reynolds, A. Rothrock, physicians; Wooden & Powell, Matthias Neice, blacksmiths; Jonas Neice, boat-builder; Ralph Boyle, lumber merchant; hotels, T. F. McCoy, E. Davis (Eagle Hotel); Fred. Hiney, brick-maker.
In 1863, Captain Matthias Neice erected a steam planning-mill and began business; in the next year Charles Stanberger became a partner and continued until 1868. A thriving business was carried on until 1874, when the property was sold to Moore, McWilliams & Co., who now run it.
The bridges across the Juniata River at this place were first built in 1835, and a company was formed in that year. A petition was presented to the County Court asking that the county subscribed to the stock. At the January term of court in 1836 the grand jury recommended that the county take sixty-four shares of stock at twenty-five dollars per share. The court confirmed the recommendation. Other subscriptions were made and the work was begun by Samuel Ewing & Co., who were the contractors. The company was not chartered until March 13, 1838. In a report of the company made in 1844 it is learned that the original bridges cost $6112.50, and that from some cause not stated they were much damaged and rebuilt in 1843 by John A. Ewing & Co., at a cost of two thousand six hundred and fifteen dollars, and one thousand dollars was spent in the construction of stone-work and wing-walls. In the great flood of October 8 and 9, 1847, they were entirely washed away, and were not rebuilt until 1849, since which time they have stood unharmed, and were toll-bridges until 1872, when the county accepted them and they became free. In the freshet of 1847 a canal-boat was washed over the Huntingdon dam, passed over the island and was lodged against some trees at the foot, where it remained many years.
POST-OFFICE. - It has not been ascertained precisely at what time a post-office was established at this place, but in 1808 the turnpike was through Waynesburg, and as George Galbraith was one of the members of the Juniata State Company which began operations in that year, it is more than probable that a post-office was established at the place. Colonel Anthony Elton was postmaster at that time or soon after. He was succeeded by this son, Revel Elton, Richard Miles, John Robb, G. W. Brehaman, John C. Montgomery, G. W. Brehman, D. H. Lusk, J. M. McCoy, James Crisswell, John Keim and Hannah C. Dull, the present incumbent, who was appointed in 1879.
INCORPORATION. - The act of Assembly to erect Waynesburg into a borough by the name of McVeytown was approved by Governor Wolf April 9, 1833. A supplement to the act was passed May 9, 1841, extending its boundaries and granting other powers to the burgess and Council. The first election was held at the octagonal school-house on the 21st of March, 1834. John M. Barton was elected the first burgess, and Richard Miles, Revel Elton, John Haman, William Rook and G. H. Galbraith were elected members of the Town Council.
On the 24th of May, 1842, the Council authorized the burgess to issue notes in sums of one dollar, fifty cents, twenty-five cents, twelve and a half cents, ten cents and six and a quarter cents, with interest at six per cent., payable in sums of five dollars one year from date. The notes were issued in June, 1842, and signed by William J. McCoy, burgess. They were issued for the purpose of paying the indebtedness of the borough, arising from macadamizing the streets the year previous, and from the difficulty of collecting taxes at the time. They were paid during the next year, and amounted to about one thousand dollars.
608 JUNIATA AND SUSQUEHANNA VALLEYS IN PENNSYLVANIA
The following are the names of the burgesses from the incorporation of the borough to the present time:
|1834. John M. Barton.||1860. Daniel Decker.|
|1835. John M. Barton.||1861. Geo. W. McBride.|
|1836. Richard Miles.||1862. Geo. W. McBride.|
|1837. Richard Miles.||1863. Christian Beck|
|1838. Ralph Bogle.||1864. Geo. W. McBride.|
|1839. Hugh Johnston.||1865. Geo. W. McBride.|
|1840. Hugh Johnston.||1866. Dr. J. A. Swartz.|
|1841. William J. McCoy.||1867. R. T. Applebaugh.|
|1842. William J. McCoy.||1868. S. A. Souders|
|1843. William J. McCoy.||1869. R. T. Applebaugh.|
|1844. George M. Bowman.||1870. J. R. Wirt.|
|1845. George M. Bowman.||1871. J. R. Wirt.|
|1846. George M. Bowman.||1872. J. R. Wirt.|
|1847. George M. Bowman.||1873. David Corkle.|
|1848. George M. Bowman.||1874. Jacob Fry.|
|1849. Wm. S. Wooden.||1875. Jacob Fry.|
|1850. William S. Davis.||1876. Jacob Fry.|
|1851. William S. Davis.||1877. George W. Hesser.|
|1852. William S. Davis.||1878. George W. Hesser.|
|1853. William Macklin.||1879. Albert H. Bear.|
|1854. William Macklin.||1880. Michael Dillon.|
|1855. Michael Horning.||1881. Michael Dillon.|
|1856. William S. Davis.||1882. J. McCarthy.|
|1857. John M. McCoy.||1883. W. H. Swanzey.|
|1858. John M. McCoy.||1884. Michael Dillon.|
|1859. Geo. W. McBride.||1885. James George.|
The justices of the peace who have served in the borough since 1840 are as follows:
|Rob. McMonigle.||1860. John Walters.|
|John Oliver, Jr.||1861. James Moran.|
|1845. William J. McCoy.||1862. Christian Beck.|
|1847. Geo. W. Bowman.||1868. B. L. Long.|
|1850. James Hood.||1869. J. R. Wirt.|
|1852. John McCord.||1874. George W. Sunderland.|
|1853. William Davis.||1879. W. H. McClellan.|
|1855. John Walters.||1884. W. P. Stevenson.|
|1858. John M. McCoy.||1885. J. R. Wirt.|
|1859. Geo. W. McBride.|
THE PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH.* - The history of the Presbyterian congregation of McVeytown is comprehended in three periods: First, from its founding to the year 1814; second, from 1814 to 1871; third, from 1871 to the present time.
First Period. - As the early records of this congregation have been lost, it is impossible to fix the exact date of its organization. It is certainly known that the Rev. Charles Beatty, of the Presbytery of Philadelphia, who was sent out by the Synod of New York and Philadelphia in 1766 to visit the frontiers of Pennsylvania, preached on the old Bratton farm in August of that year. In his journal Rev. Beatty says, "That was the first preaching in these parts." He likewise tells us that "the people had determined to build a meeting-house." The only church structure erected in this neighborhood before the close of the eighteenth century was the one on the Bratton farm, now owned by James Kyle. It is therefore, altogether probable that the church which Rev. Beatty found the people about to build was the one referred to above.
All the territory in this region was in Derry township from 1767 to 1783, when it became Wayne township, and it is probable "the Presbyterian Congregation of Central Wayne," the original name of this congregation, was organized soon after the erection of the township. The first minister resident among the people was the Rev. Matthew Stephens, who came to what is now Bratton township about the year 1785. In this year his name is entered upon the ministerial roll of the Presbytery of Donegal, as received from Ireland. In the year 1795, at the time of the organization of the Presbyter of Huntingdon, Mr. Stephens held a call in this hand from this congregation, which he had accepted, but for some reason he had never been installed. He had, however been preaching as a stated supply from the time of his settlement in the community. In October, 1795, he asked permission of Presbytery to return the call, which was granted.
The next minister of whom we have any definite knowledge was the Rev. James Simpson, who was received from the Presbytery in the "Kingdom of Ireland" in January, 1800. A request was immediately made to Presbytery to appoint him the stated supply of Wayne, Lewistown and Derry, which relation he held toward these churches for a little over three years. He was a man of intemperate habits, and, in 1802, was suspended by Presbytery, but, in defiance
*By Rev. E. H. Mateer.
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of the authority of Presbytery, continued to preach. However, he was deposed from the ministry, and nothing more is known of him from ecclesiastical records. From 1803 to 1819 there was no minister here for any length of time. The preached word as a means of grace was not regularly provided. Between these dates there was a removal of the congregation to Waynesburg (McVeytown), and reorganization under the name of the Presbyterian Congregation of Waynesburg, with three trustees.
Second Period. - This period began not later than 1814. On December 29, 1814, "John McVey, Sr., of the one part," deeded to "William Armstrong, Archibald More and James Criswell, Trustees for the Congregation of Waynesburg and its Vicinity, of the other part,' one-half acre of land situated on the west side of Queen Street and fronting six perches there-on. Soon afterwards, probably the next year, the congregation built a small stone church on the grounds donated by John McVey, Sr.
The first minister of this period was the Rev. James W. Woods, who began his labors in November, 1819, and was ordained and installed pastor for one-half of this time, at a salary of three hundred dollars per annum, on April 5,1820. In 1823 he was appointed stated supply of the Lewistown congregation for one year, and in 1824 was installed pastor at Lewistown at a salary of three hundred dollars for one-half his time. Mr. Woods continued the pastor of these two congregations until 1837, when his pastoral relation with the congregation of Waynesburg was dissolved.
During this pastorate the congregation was incorporated and the old stone church torn down and in 1833 a larger edifice of brick built at a cost of about twenty-five hundred dollars.
In April, 1838, that part of the congregation of Waynesburg in the vicinity of Newton Hamilton were, on petition to and by direction of Presbytery, organized into a separate congregation. From that date, 1838, until January 1, 1871, the two congregations were united under the same pastorate.
On July 1, 1838, the Rev. Benjamin Carrell became pastor, giving two-thirds of this time to Waynesburg and one-third to Newton Hamilton. The oldest records of the Session now known to be in existence are dated March 21, 1843, near the close of the fifth year of Mr. Carrell's pastorate. The ruling elders at that date were Samuel Witherow, ordained 1818; William Erwin, ordained 1827; Nathaniel Wilson, ordained 1827; Cyrus Criswell, ordained 1827; and William Wakefield, ordained 1827. These oldest minutes record the result of a revival by which sixty-four members were added to the Waynesburg congregation. In 1843 the Session passed a resolution that any member who should violate the Sabbath-day by running boats, or have men in their employ working on the Sabbath, would subject themselves to be deprived of church privileges. October 21, 1844, it was resolved "that if any members of this church are engaged in the traffic of ardent spirits as a beverage, they be and are required to cease from the same or subject themselves to the censure of the church." Mr. Carrell's relation with this congregation ceased October 22, 1844. On May 23, 1845, the Rev. Peter Hassinger became pastor, giving one-half of his time. The relation was dissolved June 27, 1849.
The Rev. David Sterrett was pastor from January 27, 1850, to October 2, 1855. During this pastorate a member was suspended from church privileges for traveling in the cars of the Pennsylvania Railroad on the Sabbath-day. Eighteen months afterward the suspended member was restored to church privilege on professing sorrow for his past act, and promising not to ride in the cars on the Sabbath-day.
The Rev. D. D. Clarke, D. D., became the pastor June 3, 1856, and so continued to the time of this death, December 30, 1865. In 1862 there was a revival and a large accession to the church.
The Rev. Samuel C. McCune was pastor from June 19, 1866, to April, 1869.
The Rev. Thaddeus McRae was installed pastor January, 1870, and the relation was dissolved October, 1872. On January 1, 1871, the co-pastorate with Newton Hamilton ceased, and Mr. McRae was called for the whole of his time by this congregation.
Third Period. - By decree of the County Court, on April 10, 1871, the corporate name of
610 JUNIATA AND SUSQUEHANNA VALLEYS IN PENNSYLVANIA.
Presbyterian congregation of Waynesburg was changed to "The Presbyterian Congregation of McVeytown." In 1873 the Rev. D. W. Moore was installed the pastor, and so continued till September, 1883, when the relation was dissolved at his own request. In 1874 the congregation enlarged and improved their house of worship, at an outlay on nine thousand dollars. During the last decade this congregation has contributed, for all purposes, thirty thousand dollars. The present membership is two hundred and five. The members of Session are Rev. E. H. Mateer, pastor since 1874, and Ruling Elders Abraham Rothrock, M.D., ordained May 3, 1858; Adam Lefford, ordained June, 1869; John Kiner, ordained January, 1879; George McKee, ordained June, 1879; James Macklin, ordained October, 1885; and William S. Wilson, M.D., ordained October, 1885.
The church corporation holds the following property: 1. One-half acre of land deeded December 29, 1814, by John McVey, Sr. (the present church structure stands on this plat, but the larger part is included in the graveyard). 2. A narrow strip of land on the north side of the above, bought from Samuel Holliday September 30, 1829; consideration, $37.25. 3. A plat west of No. 1, containing seventy-two perches, included in the graveyard, bought from Robert U. Jacobs August 28, 1834; consideration, one hundred and fifty dollars; only about one-third of this purchase now in possession of the church, the two-thirds to the west having been sold to the Rev. D. D. Clarke. 5. Lot No. 130 on plan of McVeytown, January 10, 1861, from James Criswell; consideration, ten dollars. 6. The parsonage and lot, purchased from Dr. A. Rothrock May 7, 1863; consideration, fifteen hundred dollars. 7. Lots No. 131 and 132 on town plan, bought of William Macklin and William A. Moore; consideration, one hundred and seventy-five dollars. 8. Lot 129, presented by Mrs. Rhettie M. Clark.
THE METHODIST EPISCOPAL CHURCH. - The society was organized in 1832, and a lot on Queen Street was purchased of Caspar Dull in 1833. A brick church was erected by Ralph Bogle, which was used until 1874, when it was enlarged and remodeled as it is at present. The pastors since 1860 have been as follows: John Morehead, John Anderson, William Gwin, M. S. Smith, A. D. Yocum, C. B. Wilson, George S. Sykes, J. M. Johnston, A. S. Baldwin, W. S. Hamlin, W. Gwin and J. W. Rue. The secretary has a present membership of one hundred and sixty.
SCHOOLS. - The children in Waynesburg for several years attended school either at the school-house on the Stewart farm or at another school-house near where the furnace was later built. Samuel Holliday donated the present lot to the village for school purposes. Upon this lot the octangular-shaped school-house was built, which was used until 1844, when a movement was instituted to build a large and more commodious house. The village at that time contained one hundred and fifty children between the ages of five and fifteen, and the old house was not sufficiently large to accommodate them. The village was set off as an independent school district in 1842, and the directors of the district called a public meeting on January 9, 1844, to discuss the propriety of erecting a large school building. At this meeting a committee was appointed to make a report January 17thm, which was done, and they reported that in their opinion it was advisable to erect a brick building, thirty by sixty feet, two stories in height, with two rooms on each floor, at an estimated cost of seventeen hundred and fifty-nine dollars, and suggested the present lot as convenient in location and as already belonging to the village.
This report was accepted and the directors advertised for proposals to be received until February 5, 1844. The contract was given to Ralph Bogle, and Owen Thomas was the carpenter. The academy was erected of brick, fifty-two by thirty-eight feet, with a cupola, and was divided into four school-rooms, twenty-five by twenty-eight feet. It was completed during the season and opened in January, 1845.
William Lyttle was one of the early teachers in the town. It has been used from that time
MIFFLIN COUNTY. 611
to the present and is the only public school-house in the village. The directors in 1842, when the village became an independent district, were Michael Norton, William Hardy and John Stine, Jr. The directors, during the building of the academy in 1844-45, were N. Wilson, T. F. McCoy, George A. Lyon, Caspar Dull and John C. Reynolds. The district contains at present one hundred and seventy-eight pupils.
NEWSPAPERS. - The first newspaper published in McVeytown was established in the spring of 1842, and was edited by William D. McVey, as the People's Friend. It was continued three or four months and suspended. In the summer of 1843, Thomas F. McCoy purchased the type, presses and other fixtures, of Mr. McVey and on the 26th of October, 1843, issued the first number of the Village Herald. It was a six column paper and was continued to February 15, 1845, when the editor, T. F. McCoy, soon after enlisted and went to the Mexican War. From that time no paper was issued in McVeytown until 1873, when Edmund Conrad began the publication of the McVeytown Journal. The first number was issued March 13th in that year. In size it was seven by twelve inches, three columns. In six months it was enlarged to four columns, and the third year was again enlarged to seven columns, its present size. This is the only paper published in this borough.
MOORE, McWILLIAMS & CO.'S BANK. - In the spring of 1872, an organization was effected for carrying on a banking business, and the following-named directors were elected: William A. Moore, Samuel McWilliams, James Forgy, David Stine, Jr., A. Rothrock, M. D. and John Atkinson.
The directors elected William A. Moore president and J. R. Wirt, cashier. Business was begun in the present banking office July 18, 1872. The only change to the present is in the election of W. P. Stevenson in April, 1879, the death of James Forgy and retirement of John Atkinson.
WILLIAM A. MOORE is of Scotch-Irish extraction and the grandson of William Moore, a soldier of the Revolution who received a wound during that memorable conflict resulting in his death. He removed from Lancaster County, Pa., to Mifflin County and engaged in farming pursuits. His children were Archibald, John, Andrew, who died in youth; Mary (Mrs. Stanley), and Ann (Mrs. Wilson). Archibald of this number was born on the 13th of May, 1768, on the farm of his father in Mifflin (then Cumberland) County, and at a late period of his life purchased the farm lying adjacent to the homestead on which he resided during his lifetime. He was a man of much strength of character and wielded an extended influence in the community, having filled the office of justice of the peace, also various minor positions. He married Rebecca, daughter of William Junkin, of the same county, born in 1769. Their children are Isabella, born in 1793; Jane, in 1795 (Mrs. John Owens); Ann, in 1798; Isabella, second, in 1800, (Mrs. Richard Miles); William A., February 4, 1804; Margaret, in 1806, (Mrs. Samuel Hays); Mary Ann, in 1809 (Mrs. Potts), and Catherine, in 1813, (Mrs. James McCoy), all of whom, with the exception of the subject of this biographical sketch, are deceased. The birth of William A. occurred on the farm purchased by his father. His studies which included the languages were pursued under the direction of Reverends James S. Woods and John Hutchison, after which he returned to his home and at once became interested in the cultivation of the land which he acquired by inheritance on the death of his father. To this property he gave his personal attention until 1841, when McVeytown became his place of residence. Here he engaged in the grain business, though still retaining his ownership of the farm of which in 1851 he resumed the management. He had meanwhile embarked in a mercantile enterprise under the firm name of Steel & Co., which business connection was continued but a brief time. Mr. Moore is also identified with the banking firm of Moore, McWilliams & Co., established in 1872, of which he is president. Though educated as a Democrat of the Jeffersonian school of politics he afterward became a Whig and later a Republican,
612 JUNIATA AND SUSQUEHANNA VALLEYS IN PENNSYLVANIA.
WM. A. MOORE
though he has neither sought nor accepted office. He is a member of the Presbyterian Church of McVeytown of which he has for many years been a trustee.
SOCIETIES. - McVeytown Lodge, No. 123, I. O. O. F., was instituted, in 1841, in the village, and continued about two years, when they disbanded. No other lodge was formed here until 1870, when, on March 14, in that year, a charter was granted to Bright Star Lodge, No. 705. I. O. O. F. meetings were held in Couch Hall for a time, and in 1871 rooms were fitted up in the Davis Hotel, on the Diamond, which they occupied until the spring of 1884, when they moved to Couch Hall, where they now are. The lodge has a membership of forty-five, with the following officers: M. A. Stine, N. G.; A. T. Lefford, V. G.; E. Conrad, Secretary; Stephen Tredwick, Assistant Secretary, and E. S. Stewart, Treasurer.
The McVeytown Lodge, No. 376, A. Y. M. was chartered October 22, 1866, and instituted November 16th, with thirteen charter members. Twelve of the members were from Lancaster Lodge, No. 203, and one, C. P. Dull, from Easton Lodge, No. 152. A lodge-hall was fitted up in the brick house of C. P. Dull, where they still hold their meetings. They have at present thirty-seven active members, with J. R. Wirt, W. M.; Samuel M. Troxell, Secretary, and C. P. Dull, Treasurer.
Chaplain Thomas Stevenson Post, No. 482, G. A. R., was organized June 21, 1885, by the members of the Colonel Hulings Post, of Lewistown. The Post started with thirty-one charter members, and the following officers were elected and appointed for the first term: P. C., W. A. Wilson; S. V. C., W. H. McClellan; J. V. C., Joseph S. Leffard; O. of D., Austin Gro; O. of G., W. A. Moore; Q. M., J. J. Corkle; Chaplain, Mathias Neice; Surgeon, F. M. Coulter; Adjutant, M. C. Bratton; Sergeant-Major, E. J. Davis; Q. M. Sergeant, Rudolph Ward; I. S., A. J. Jenkins; O. S., F. P. Kirk.
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