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Bradford Reporter Towanda, Pa., Feb. 14, 1884.
COLUMBIA TOWNSHIP Early History
According to Judge Bullock, Columbia Township was first settled by John and Nathaniel Ballard, twin brothers, who came from Massachusetts when Washington was President, (1795), and settled in what is now Sylvania borough. They staid but a short time and, and for five dollars and a hog, sold their little clearing and improvement right. In 1798, or the following year, Nathaniel Morgan began a clearing on the farm at Austinville, now owned by John Morgan, his grandson. Mr. Morgan came from Connecticut title to 17,000 acres of land, a title which was entirely worthless. After years of litigation the Pennsylvania title of the Bingham's was established, and Mr. Morgan re-purchased 500 acres of his vast tract for a bushel of wheat per acre.
After the first season Mr. Morgan went back for his family and the following spring came back bringing beside his family, David Watkins, Oliver Canfield, Joseph Batterson, Jeremiah Chapman, Aaron Bennett, and Samuel Lamphere, whom he induced to come into the wilderness by giving them 50 acres each of his land. The next settlers were Solomon Soper and William Rose, who came from Vermont. In 1801 Elnathan Goodrich came to the township from Delaware Co., N.Y., bringing a small babe with him. This baby was Elisha S. Goodrich, founder of the REPORTER, and father of its able and successful editor and conductor, E. O'Meara Goodrich.
Charles Keyes and a man named Doty are said by some to have preceded those already mentioned, having come soon after the Ballard's clearing. In 1802-3 the Buckley family came; in 1804 David Palmer; Calvin Tinkham and Nathaniel Merritt in 1807; Mr. Havens, John Bixby, Asa Howe, Phineas Jones, David R. Caswell, John Lilly and Rev. Joseph Beeman in 1808; and in the next ten years John P. Gernet, Wm. Furman, Reuben Nash, Jacob Miller, Michael Wolf, Oliver Besly, John McClelland, Asa Bullock, Joseph Gladding, Peleg Peckham, John, Calkins, Levi Cornell, Henry Harris, Thomas Monroe, and perhaps one or two others. These were the old settlers as given in Craft's History of Bradford Co., and from them have descended a vigorous and prosperous yeomaury that have made Columbia one of the prosperous townships of western Bradford.
In those early days when Washington, Adams, Jefferson, and Madison were Presidents, and Hamilton, Jay, Samuel and John Adams, Patrick Henry, John Hancock, Aaron Burr, and the other politicians were quarreling together about political matters even more bitterly than men quarrel now, and while a united country was being carved from a slip-shod confederation, the pioneers were fighting nature and making more than two blades of grass grow where none had grown. In their early struggles there were many adventures that deserve a more extended notice than we have space to give. It is enough to say that bears, wolves and panthers challenged the pioneers' right of soil, and that the title was only established after much bloodshed and "bar" meat diet.
In the first decade of 1800 the milling was done at Wilkes-Barre, and it required at least a week's work to get a grist down and back. In the first place the grain had to be carried on horseback to the Susquehanna, from whence it was loaded in canoes and floated easily down to the mill. Coming back was hard poling nearly all the way, and the canoe-man generally spent one Sunday away from his humble log cabin and huge fireplace. The mortar and pestle supplied a considerable of the food and the women did the primitive grinding.
Tradition says Doty's log cabin was the first dwelling in Columbia, and that it was built in 1795. Laura Watkins, born in August, 1800, and Herman Soper born in September of the same year, were the native-born pioneer babies of Columbia. The first framed house was built in 1808 by Charles Keyes. David Watson kept the first store which supplied tobacco and its concomitant necessity, whisky, to the needy inhabitants. Sylvania, the first post-office was established in 1818. Tioga Point was for some time their trading point, and as it was about twenty miles away when they went it was to trade, not to price and look around.
Getting lost was one of the necessary experiences of the pioneers and "Abe" Weast, an experienced hunter and woodsman was one of the victims. In going to Mill Creek he was lost and wandered for three days with nothing to eat, before he found a settlement. His experience was that of many others, though his time without anything to eat was longest. The scanty clearings, trespassed on by deer, bears, wolves and other wild animals, the forests stretching scores of miles in every direction, the log houses with scanty comforts, the great fallow fires, the distant neighbors, and the many privations are a part of Columbia's history as of every other new settlement and need no special recounting in this brief sketch.
Present History Though it is our pleasure at this time to describe one of the largest and most prosperous of the townships of the country, we cannot picture it in all its beauty-the face of the country being partly hidden from our view with is mantle of white, and the vegetation appearing least inviting.
Columbia, on the whole is rather undulating, and somewhat mountainous in the eastern and southwestern parts. There are, however, several fine and productive valleys, through which flow the various branches of the Sugar Creek.
The township is well watered by many excellent living springs, Mill, Wolf, South and Spring Creeks, and the large stream already mentioned. The soil is very fruitful, being a productive clay in the valleys, and red shale in the hillsides. From the points already given, it will be seen that the soil is adapted for grazing and dairying. Hay, oats, corn and buckwheat are grown in large quantities, and as much wheat as is consumed. Iron ore is found in considerable quantities between Austinville and Columbia X Roads. It is said to be of a good quality.
Farming and dairying are the chief business of the people, and in this industry rank second to no other townships in the county. Dairying alone has been made a specialty for thirty-five years. The dairies are among the choicest of the county, many consisting of thoroughbred stock. These are the Jerseys, the Ayrshires, and the Durhams. In fine blooded horses, Columbia ranks very high. The farmers of this vicinity are wide-awake and up with the times. The farming interests are worked up through the Troy Farmers' Club and the Columbia Grange, the last named institution consisting of a hundred and fifty members, is the largest in the State save one.
Columbia's farmers are indeed, as the saying goes, "well fixed", and have pleasant homes, and fine and spacious barns with all the other luxuries and conveniences that would add to their comforts and happiness. The great prosperity of the township dates from the opening of the Northern Central Railroad when an outlet was made for her products. Large quantities of butter, oats and buckwheat flour are exported. Columbia has the reputation of being the first township in the county to pay her taxes. A most commendable feature of the township is her large number of public schools which are so heartily supported by the citizens. We hope, too, that the interest in this direction may never lessen as it is upon our public schools that the future hopes of our nation are based.
The intelligence of the people is exercised in electing only square, competent men to office, and here we must give the present official list: Supervisors, A. Buchanan, A. Fries, H. C. Gernert; Town Clerk, L. B. Slade; Justices of the Peace, J. H. Calkins, M. Fairbanks; Constable, S. F. Wilson; Treasurer, F. Furman; Assessor, John Morgan; School Directors, J. H. Calkins, R. G. Gernert, F. W. Bullock, J. H. Watkins, H. Wolf, Frank Thurman; Auditors, J. R. Watkins, Lewis Soper, Dewitt Wolf.
The people of Columbia are highly intelligent, enterprising, and hospitable, as will be seen from our visits with them. We shall aim in our series of letters to give the early history of each family more especially when making mention of our visit with it. The first gentleman we had the pleasure interviewing in the township was Clark Griffin, who as gained a reputation for his fine crops. Mr. Griffin came from Delaware County, N. Y., fourteen years ago, and took charge of the farm he now occupies, which, indeed, was in a very poor state of cultivation, his neighbors remarking, "it would not raise white beans". Mr. Griffin at once began improvements, and tilling the soil in a skillful manner. All were surprised at his first crop, which was a bountiful one, as have been his crops ever since. The following will illustrate what he has grown: From two and one-half acres in a single year two crops were produced, the first when threshed gave eighty-seven bushels wheat, and the latter seventy-eight bushels of buckwheat. Mr. Griffin called our attention to a part of an old finished plow to which had been attached a wooden mould board. It is an interesting article when compared with those of modern construction. Our visit with J. R. Fox, an old soldier, proved a very interesting one, as are all our visits with the boys who wore the "blue". Mr. Fox enlisted in the 6th Pennsylvania Reserves, in July, 1861, was in McClellan's Division, and was connected with the Army of the Potomac. For some time he was a teamster, and recounts many hairbreadth escapes while acting in that capacity. While at White House Landing when the rebels made a dash, he saved eighteen horses and three mules, all that were saved. He was at the White House when it was burned. This building is said to be on the foundation of the house in which Washington was married. Mr. Fox, after a year and a half service was compelled to return home on account of failing health, but when sufficiently restored again re-enlisted in the 187 P.V. and served until the war closed. He was in the engagement at the Weldon Railroad and other notable points. Mr. Fox showed us a letter which he took from a dead rebel's pocket at Antietam. It was from a wife to her husband. It was full of affection, begging him to quit the war and come home. How sad she must have felt a few days later, when Mr. Fox wrote her of her husband's misfortune.
We found J. H. Calkins a very intelligent gentleman conversant with the history and interests of the township. He is a progressive farmer, pleasantly domiciled, with fine outbuildings. Mr. Calkins carries on dairying successfully. His stock is of high grade Durhams. Mr. Calkins occupies the old homestead where his grandfather, John Calkins, began in 1817. Mrs. John Calkins showed us a solid silver tablespoon made from Spanish dollars, which has been in use for over sixty years. Among other interesting articles were an old fashioned pewter platter over a hundred years old, a "little brown jug" which was sent full of choice wine by one of the Governors of Massachusetts to Judge Bullock while being sick. Judge Bullock was a great father of Mrs. Calkins. Mrs. Calkins is also a distant relative of Ethan Allen, of Ticonderoga fame. Miss Nellie Calkins has a bureau coming down from her great-great-great-grandmother, over two hundred years old. It is of maple and English oak, and was undoubtedly made in England.
BRADFORD REPORTER Towanda, Pa., Feb. 21, 1884
COLUMBIA TOWNSHIP Sylvania At the head of a beautiful valley hemmed in on three sides by high hills is situated Sylvania Borough, or the old village of "Columbia Flats". It is a pleasant village in the southern part of the township, four miles northwest of Troy on the confluent headwaters of Sugar Creek. The village contains a population of two hundred and twenty-seven souls, and was incorporated as a borough May 4th, 1853.
The first clearing in the township was made within the present limits of Sylvania borough by John and Nathaniel Ballard, twin brothers, who came in from Burlington in 1795, and chopped a fallow of four acres on what is now the farm of John T. Nash. When the Ballard boys, then eighteen years old, came into Columbia to make their clearing, they carried nothing with them but their knapsacks, filled with pork and Johnny-cake and their axes. They followed the creek to avoid losing their way, as no white man had ever gone that way before, and no track was visible, or blazed tree to mark the way. When they arrived at the present site of Long's mills, two panthers sprang from their coverts across the way, and seemed disposed to prevent the farther progress of the young pioneers. The beasts were not easily scared, and the "grass policy" only made them show their fangs the more fiercely. At last, armed each with a hickory club, the boys made a dash upon the long-tailed cats, and a few blows well delivered soon put them to flight. Before arriving at their point of destination, a pack of bears attempted to oppose their advance, and being treated to a like onslaught, retreated and left the field to the victors. After a week's labor the provisions gave out and they returned to Burlington for fresh supplies; and on their return to their clearing the next week, they brought their rifles along. On the way up they killed two panthers. It appears that each was to have a hundred and fifty acres of land free of cost, and a bonus of ten dollars, provided they should each clear ten acres; but the place was so far from their base of supplies, and the way so impracticable that they concluded to sell their claims, which they did, and returned to Burlington.
"In the same year in which the Ballards made their improvements, a man named Doty made a possession, and built a log house on the Scouten farm. This was the first dwelling house built in the township."
James Calkins and Isaac Smith are said to have been the first to dabble in the mercantile business of Sylvania.
Reuben Nash was the first postmaster, the office being established there in 1818. Again, adverting to Sylvania, as we find it today, we must mention the points of interest there. The enterprise that first deserves our notice is the furniture establishment of Waldo & Kenyon, firm established in 1870. Mr. Waldo is the senior partner, succeeding his father in the cabinet business, he having begun at Sylvania forty-five years since. In the shop of Waldo & Kenyon is manufactured a superior line of furniture adapted to the country trade. They also carry on a branch shop at Austinville, and deal in lumber. The firm are young men of sterling integrity, and we heartily commend them to the liberal patronage of all.
The main store of the town is kept by Peleg Peck, and is in charge of "Uncle Peter Monroe," a most accommodating old gentleman. The store is a general one, and carries a line of merchandise suited to the country trade. Connected with the store is the post-office, which is finely conducted by G. P. Monroe, the efficient postmaster, who has acted in that capacity for twenty years.
Mrs. J. Peck deals in general groceries, tobacco, cigars, confectioneries, notions and miscellaneous articles.
F. P. Peck has a tin shop connected, and makes anything from a tin whistle to a tin boiler. Mrs. J. F. Bristol carries a full and choice line of millinery goods of the latest styles, notions, hosiery, fancy goods, laces and trimmings, also many miscellaneous articles. Mrs. Bristol has had an experience of over thirty years in the millinery business, and is thoroughly prepared to do all kinds of work, and to make it look as fine as need be, with all the rich colors of the season. Mrs. J. A. Dale is also engaged in the millinery business, and carries miscellaneous goods.
Colony Brothers are engaged in lumbering, and run a steam saw-mill. They are very stirring gentlemen, and are doing an extensive business.
D. Hollenbeck is the reliable boot and shoemaker of the place. His work is unexcelled. Alexander and Gregory are general blacksmiths, having been engaged in that business from boyhood. They have an established trade and reputation.
C. Fuller is the village cooper, does his work with the touch of a master mechanic. T. A. Grey is the skillful physician of the place. He is a very able practitioner, being a graduate of Jefferson Medical College, and has an extensive ride.
The Sylvania House is kept by H. Pitts. The hotel would do credit to towns of a much larger size.
The place affords two church edifices and a school building, also a very cosy Odd Fellows Hall.
The excellent choir at Sylvania deserves special notice. It is second to no other in the county, and is led by C. E. Gladding.
The following is the list of officers of the place: Burgess, W. H. Stevens; Council, W. L. Scouten, S. Keys, C. H. Mosier, C. E. Waldo, A. D. Ballard, F. P. Peck; Justices of the Peace, J. F. Bristol, L. N. Tinkham; Constable, J. B. Card; Assessor, James Kenyon; School Directors, John H. Killgore, W. L. Scouten, Dr. T. A. Gray, J. B. Card, C. E. Colony, C. E. Waldo.
Fine Stock Among the finest stock that we have yet seen in the horse line, J. B. Card has a very fine four-year-old filly sired by the Warwick Boy-dam, Fanny Talmage by Squire Talmage, by Rysdyk's Hambletonian from an American Stare mare; and a two-year-old filly sired by the Warwick boy-dam by Kilpatrick, by son of Rysdyk's Hambletonian. Mr. Calkins has also two very fine registered colts, Serene and Baldoleer, both from noted stock, with a record as good as 2:11 ¼. Mr. Calkins may well fell proud of his possession in the horse line.
D. C. Strait also has a deep fascination for fast horses, as a visit to his stables will show. The first we would note is a very fine four-year-old Hambletonian sired by the noted Warwick-dam Messenger. She has already taken the laurels at a notable race at Webb's Mills. The second is a fine young stallion three years old from the same horse and mare, and is owned in partnership with D. Hollenbeck. Mr. Strait has also a two-year-old from the same stock; and a very fine breeding mare, registered, served by General Knox, in breed Hambletonian-dam from the strain of the Goldsmith stock.
Our Visits Continued
We spent a couple of hours very pleasantly and profitably with J. C. McKean, an old resident of the township. His father was Benjamin McKean, the fifth Sheriff of Bradford County, and brother of General McKean. Benjamin owned at one time what is now the Poor House farm, but sold to the General and came to Columbia in 1819, when the township was yet densely wooded with huge hemlocks. There he settled and improved the farm which is now occupied by the subject of our visit, who joined with him in subduing the mighty woods. Mr. McKean's accounts of the "good old time" logging and chopping bees, apple-cuts, etc., were full of interest and amusement. Such were-"Come Philander, let's be marching, Needle's-eye, the two sisters, or a French four." Mr. McKean is a thrifty farmer, and is surrounded by all the comforts of life. With a pleasant face and kind hospitality, we were received by H. S. Taylor, who occupies a part of the old homestead of Charles Taylor, Esq., who came in from New England with his father, Moses Taylor, about 1808. Charles Taylor was a very intelligent and influential man, and was Justice of the Peace for many years. He gained a great reputation in tying the knot of conjugal happiness, and the fiancées came from far and near to have him united them in the bonds of wedlock, as it was commonly remarked that"all he married did well."
H. S. Taylor is a successful and extensive farmer, with enough of this world's goods to assure him the happiness of a king in the evening of his years. He and his son, G. F. Taylor, carry young stock very extensively, quitting the dairying business. Mr. Taylor has a very fine matched span of Hambletonian colts. They carry themselves very nicely, and at a speed that would please the fastest driver.
We found C. H. Ballard pleasantly domiciled and an interesting gentleman. He is a wide-awake farmer, and carries on that industry quite extensively, growing especially barley and buckwheat in large crops. In fine blooded stock Mr. Ballard's pride is in the Durham line, which he is increasing. Mr. Ballard occupies a part of the Charles Taylor place. He is a son of Judge Ballard, and a grandson of Nathaniel Ballard, one of the notable twin brothers. Mr. Ballard has an interesting relic, over a hundred years old, in the way of a brass mortar used by his uncle, Dr. John Murphy.
A visit with George M. Card proved him a gentleman well skilled in the art of practical farming, a fact which our inquisitiveness took advantage of in determining many useful points. Mr. Card is Secretary of the Troy Farmers' Club, and has acted in that capacity ever since the institution of the society. In stock Mr. Card's pride is in the Durham line, both in his dairy and young stock. Mr. Card occupies a part of the place taken up by Moses Taylor in 1808. Traditionally we have it that Mr. Taylor kept a primitive hotel, where Anson Card now lives, also some merchandise. Soon after Mr. Taylor came into the place, he erected a log school house, the first in the township, on what is now the place of H. S. Taylor. The township, however, at that time was Ulster in Lycoming County, from which Smithfield was subsequently taken. Columbia, then "Cabot", remained a part of Smithfield until 1814, when it was given a separate organization. Moses Taylor was a very kind man, and his spirit of benevolence may be illustrated by the following: He owned only grindstone in the vicinity which his neighbors would frequently ask the use of in sharpening their axes, replying to them-"Yes; you are welcome to the stone provided you let me turn for you"
Our visit with Abram and Leroy Scouten proved a most pleasant one. We found them most progressive gentlemen conversant with the topics of the day. They have a pleasant location, and are successful farmers. In the stock line they have a pride in the Durhams and Ayrshires. The Scoutens occupy the old homestead of Samuel Scouten, who came in from Delaware County, N.Y., about fifty years ago.
We found Mr. and Mrs. F. H. Burritt very interesting and hospitable people. Mr. Burritt is a successful farmer, and is a son of Eli Burritt, who came to Sylvania from Manchester, Vermont, in 1829. For many years he has engaged in the lumbering business and farming; but has now retired from active life a highly respected old gentleman. His son John wore the "blue" during the existence of the rebellion. Mrs. F. H. Burritt's father, Merrick Shattuck, came in from New Hampshire at an early day, and will long be remembered as the champion of Abolition in this vicinity. William Peck must be remembered in this connection with him.
W. G. Bradford is one of the most successful and prosperous farmers of the township. He left Bristol, R. I., when twenty years of age to seek his fortune. He arrived in Bradford County in 1829, a poor mechanic, not even having a suitable suit of clothes upon his back. Through the dint of hard work and strict economy, he has succeeded in accumulating an ample sufficiency for old age. Mr. Bradford has a fine dairy in the Durham line. He took the first short horn stock to the Troy fairs. Mr. Bradford also has some very fine Hambletonian and Clydesdale colts. He recently sold a span of French-Percherons at a very high price.
E. W. Dan has a very pleasant location and is an extensive farmer. He carries a fine dairy. Among his stock we noticed a very fine pair of short horn Devonshire oxen, four years old, which he offers for sale. Mr. Dan's fine water-works is a commendable feature on his premises.
BRADFORD REPORTER Towanda, Pa. March 6 1884
COLUMBIA TOWNSHIP Austinville
In the narrow valley of the north branch of Sugar Creek, in the western-central part of the township is situated the pleasant little town of Austinville, with a population of two hundred and twenty-five souls. The place is named in memory of A. B. Austin, late of Elmira, who came to the village about 1857, and began business on a small scale. He, however, displayed great energy and enterprise which resulted in the development of an extensive business, and did much to build up the place.
In earlier years the vicinity was know as "Cabot Hollow", and latter as "Morgan Hollow," the origin of which may be seen from the following: In 1709 Nathaniel Morgan emigrated from Connecticut, and located at what is now Austinville and began clearing on the farm which has been owned until recently by John Morgan, a grandson. He had previously bought the Connecticut title to 17,000 acres of land, comprising the present township of Columbia, a part of Springfield, and a portion of Eastern Tioga, which it is said he paid $7,000 for in half-dollar silver pieces. This title, however, like all other Connecticut titles, proved worthless. Mr. Morgan made a clearing, built a cabin, raised a crop of potatoes, which he buried, sowed a piece of wheat and went back for his family, with whom he re-united in the following spring, and also accompanied by David Watkins, Oliver Canfield, Joseph Batterson, Jeremiah Chapman., Aaron Bennett and Samuel Lamphere, whom he induced to come with him by giving them each a deed of fifty acres.
After years of litigation the Pennsylvania title of the Binghams was established, and Mr. Morgan re-purchased 500 acres of his vast tract for a bushel of wheat per acre, or its equivalent in currency. The Morgans were great hunters, and we have it, that their paltry sum brought them enough to clear the debt. The prospects were indeed dreary enough when these bold pioneers came into the ownership in the spring of 1800. It was a dense wilderness, with not even a foot path in which to walk, and nothing but glazed trees to guide them. They were men poor in property but rich in energy and perseverance. They immediately set to work, and in a few days each had a cabin with a bark roof and ground floor, then began the battling with the wild woods and the discouragements of pioneer life. But we are digressing, and would again call attention to the Morgan family. It comprised father, mother, two sons, James and Phineas Chapman, and a daughter Nancy. Nancy married Amos Satterlee, with whom she moved to Ohio where she died. After the death of Nathaniel Morgan, his two sons came to possession of his property, which they occupied until they died. Of the descendents of the Morgan family we will make mention farther along.
Again, adverting to Austinville as we find it after eighty-four years' improvements, we find there a general store kept by Firman and Hibbard, doing an extensive business, the greatest in the township. They carry a full line of ready-made clothing and dry goods, including dress goods in great variety, cloths, etc., also a full supply of boots and shoes of the latest styles and best makes. The best staple groceries are kept in full stock, and a superior line of queensware and hardware. School books and a thousand one other miscellaneous articles are kept. The firm deal extensively in produce, making butter a specialty. A visit to their store must convince one that they are doing a fine business, and that their pleasant faces and honorable business qualities make them many customers and friends. In connection with the store is kept the post office, Mr. Furman being the obliging postmaster.
Philip H. Slade is engaged in the drug business, carrying a full line of drugs, patent medicines, notions, confectioneries, tobacco and cigars, and in connection does job printing. Mr. Slade is a young man of energy, and is developing his business. We earnestly commend him to the favorable notice and patronage of all.
M. B. Riley is the reliable harnessmaker. He makes both light and heavy harness, single and double, and does general repairing. He also deals in oils, blankets, etc. Mr. Riley is a young man deserving encouragement, for his manly course, and we hope he may be blessed by a booming business.
J. R. Watkins deals in wagons, sleighs, and farming implements, giving especial attention to light, double and single wagons, and carriages of the Brockway make. He also handles the celebrated Auburn lumber wagon, deals in harness of all descriptions. He is agent for Remington's clipper plows, and Perry's spring tooth harrow. He carries anything in the line of first class farm machinery, and can suit you in kind and prices.
O. W. Besley also deals in agricultural implements of all kinds. He is agent for the Eureka mower which has a world-wide reputation, and Wheeler & Melick's broad case seed sowers, with fertilizer attachment, also Eagle's wheel rakes, and the Clipper chilled plow. Mr. Besley also deals in light and heavy wagons of the best make. For first class machinery remember you cannot do better than by giving him your order.
C. E. Teeter is the skillful blacksmith of the place, having been engaged continuously there since 1860. He does general custom work, and with a promptness and thoroughness that bring him many patrons.
The hotel is kept by Warren Smith, who also owns and operates a steam sawmill with which is connected a cider factory and distillery and feed mill. Mr. Smith does general custom work to the satisfaction of his patrons.
The physician of the place is Dr. A. A. Armstrong, a graduate of Ann Arbor University. Though he is young in the profession, he is a young man of sterling integrity, finely qualified, and will undoubtedly attain eminence in his chosen profession. The place affords a church edifice and school building, also an Odd Fellows' hall.
The post office at Austinville was established June 2d, 1846, as Havensville, Dunsmore Smith being appointed first postmaster. The name was changed to Austinville in 1861. David Watkins kept the first store if we might call it such, which supplied the needy inhabitants, in part with groceries and other articles. The goods were second-hand, and were bought of Abel Watkins, a cousin of David, who brought them in with a two horse team.
The furniture store was back of what is now the hotel barn. The first hotel was kept by John Morgan, the same house as now kept by Mr. Smith
Our Visits Continued
We found S. P. Tinkham a very enterprising and successful farmer, occupying the place of his father, Calvin Tinkham, who came in from Massachusetts in 1807. When Mr. Tinkham took up his farm the first tree had not been felled. He made many improvements, and occupied the place until the time of his death. Mr. S. P. Tinkham, though now an elderly gentleman, has lived on the farm ever since his birth. The farming interests are carried on by Mr. Tinkham and his son-in-law, William Courtney. They carry a fine dairy of grade Ayrshires, and give considerable attention to young stock. They also give much attention to the raising of fine blooded sheep which they keep in large flocks. In their stables may be found choice stock in the horse line. We noticed two very fine thorough-bred Lexington colts, which have recently been offered for $1,400. Mr. Courtney donned the blue, enlisting in 1861. He was a member of Company H, 50th Regiment, New York Volunteers, Eng., and served with the Army of the Potomac for a period of three years. He helped to pontoon the Potomac at the time of Burnside's disastrous repulse at Fredericksburg. One familiar with the history of this expedition, remembers how the rebel sharp-shooters were entrenched in an old cellar, and cut down the men at work on the bridges. As they neared the other side the work only became the more hazardous and sure death when within a few rods of the other shore. It was a miracle to escape uninjured, yet Mr. Courtney passed through this ordeal without a scratch, and helped to dislodge the enemy. This is but one of the many dangerous places Mr. Courtney passed through, but time and space will not permit us to sketch them. He was, however, a gallant soldier, and like all the true blues, deserves the graceful remembrance of us all.
We spent an evening very pleasantly with A. M. Cornell, one of the most successful and enterprising farmers of the township. He occupies the old homestead, purchased by his father, Levi Cornell, who came in from Massachusetts in 1827. Mr. Cornell, as well as his brother F. P., has a thoroughbred Ayrshire dairy. They were the first to introduce this stock in the county. The points claimed on this stock, were the milking qualities and the small quantity of food with which it is kept. This stock originated about a century ago in Ayrshire, Scotland, the home of the poet, Burns. Mr. Cornell has some very fine stock in this line which has taken the premium at different points. Mr. Cornell was superintendent of the Poor House in 1881, and filled the office to the entire satisfaction of the people. Among the early settlers at this time we must mention Thomas Monroe, who came to Columbia from Bristol, Rhode Island, in 1823. He occupied a part of the Moses Taylor farm which he purchased of the Neshes, and where he lived until the time of his death which occurred in 1836. "Uncle" Peter Monroe, of whom kind notice is due, and to whom we are largely indebted for much of the information contained in our letters, is a son and was born in Bristol, Rhode Island, and accompanied the family in their notable "fourteen days' journey" to Columbia. Mr. Monroe, though a gentleman of ripened years, relates with accuracy very many interesting facts of "Early Columbia", as told him by the daring fathers who first opened the way for civilization, and have long since been laid in the grave. Mr. Monroe has been an unfortunate man in business, but his kind heart and sterling integrity has gained the esteem and sympathies of all.
Corrections for all: In speaking of the fine horses of J. B. Card, the name"Calkins" should have been Card.
We found C. E. Gladding in his fine new home, and spent a very pleasant evening with him. Mr. Gladding occupies the homestead of his father, Joseph Gladding, who came from Burlington, Rhode Island, in 1817. He was thirty-one days on the road, and came with his wife's brother, Viall Allen Bullock. Mr. Gladding is one of the most thrifty and enterprising farmers in the township, as everything about the premises shows. His fine octagon barn is the finest in the county. It has a diameter of eighty feet, and is forty feet from the eaves to the foundation on the lower side. The structure is complete in design, and is built of the very best materials. On the upper floor is stored the hay and grain, on the second is kept the stock, and on the first or ground work the manure. Mr. Gladding carries on dairying extensively, and is a prominent Granger, having held a State office. Mr. Gladding was in the service, being a member of the 132d P. V. Couch's Division, and a first lieutenant Company D. He was also Register and Recorder of Bradford County from 1869 to 1872.
One of our most interesting visits was spent with James Bullock and family. Mr. Bullock occupies the place taken up by his father, Asa Bullock, who came in from Massachusetts in the Spring of 1817. To relate his journey would be but a recital of the log and tedious pilgrimage of the pioneers. During the summer he made improvements and put in crops. In the fall he returned to Massachusetts and brought in his family which consisted of two daughters and seven sons, three of whom only are now living. These are James, Stephen and Viall. Mr. Bullock made many improvements. He died in 1831. James Bullock is an enterprising farmer, and a genial old gentleman of manly virtues. His mother, Jerusha Allen, is a near relative of General Ethan Allen. Mr. Bullock married Martha Bruce, a lady as happy as himself. His father, William Bruce, was one of the first settlers in Springfield.
C. B. Strait has a pleasant situation and home, and is a fine farmer. He occupies the place of his father, Major Strait, who was a very prominent man in Tioga county at one time. Mr. Strait's ancestors on his father's side came from Vermont. Mr. Strait's pride is in his fine thoroughbred Jersey dairy. He has recently purchased a fine male, Jerry of Hillsdale, No. 0.882-sired by Drimmo-dam, Rose Alphea, from the Alphea strain. He comes from a line in which 116 cows made each fourteen pounds of butter in seven days. Mr. Strait has a very fine Hambletonian colt, three years old, from the Ethan Allen strain. We also noticed a fine crop of tobacco which he offers for sale.
The pleasant face of Mr. and Mrs. A. L. Smith made our visit a most enjoyable one. They believe that "life is what we make it,"-and that it should be happy. Mr. Smith indulged our curiosity in showing us a lot of Indian relics. He has a pure thoroughbred yearling Jersey bull, Mr. Smith is of the notable Smith family.
We found J. M. Struble a pleasant gentleman, and one who could recount the cruelties and hardships of a sad war. He enlisted in 1862 and served under General Foster in North Carolina. He did blockade duty in this campaign, and scouting service at Newberg. He was thence transferred to Virginia where he remained in active service until the time of his discharge.
E. S. Huslander is a genial gentleman, and gave us a very pleasant reception. Mr. Huslander is a farmer, and carries on lumbering business. He has a double portable mill which plays like a thing of life with the big timbers. If you have a large job and wish it done quickly and well, remember him.
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