The Reverend Mr. David Craft
HISTORY OF THE TOWNSHIPS
Geographically, the township of Herrick is situated between the
townships of Orwell, on the north ; Pike, on the east; Wyalusing, on the
south, and Standing Stone, on the West.
It was organized in December, 1837, and named in honor of Hon. Edward Herrick, then president judge of the court of common pleas of Bradford County. The surface is a high table-land, which is the source of the headwaters of the Wyalusing branches, the Wysox, and the Rummerfield creeks. The township is well adapted for grazing and dairying, which form the principal occupation of its inhabitants. The area includes territory about five miles square. In 1840 the township contained 632 inhabitants; in 1850, 813; in 1860, 1050 ; and in 1870, 1009. It has nine schools, two stores, one hotel, two post-offices, three churches, one Presbyterian and one Methodist, and one Wesleyan,and the Baptist society are now engaged in erecting another.
The first settlers in the town came there previous to the year
1813. Among them were Zephar Platt and his son Nathaniel, who came
from Connecticut. They settled in what is now known as East Herrick,
on what is now the farm of H. H. Smith, whose new barn stands very near
where the old log house stood. Nathaniel did not locate for himself
until the year after he came in. He married Mabel Hitchcock, and
lived near his father. The elder Platt lived to advanced years, and
died on the old homestead. Nathaniel had three sons, Charles, who
was for a time engaged in mercantile pursuits, and subsequently retired
and bought the old homestead, and died thereon, Nathaniel, who yet lives
in Herrick, and Jarvis, who moved west. Nathaniel, the father of
these three last-named persons, was accidentally killed at a general training
at Orwell, about 1831. Ephraim Platt was also a son of Zophar, and
is now dead.
Another of the first settlers was Fredus Reed, who, with his wife, a daughter of Asa Matson, came in from Simmsbury, Conn., and took up the farm now owned by Henry Phelps. He was a dish-turner by trade, and was induced to come to Herrick by the fine timber growing here, which included hemlock, cucumber, and maple. His turning lathe stood on a little creek below. He came in during the year 1811.
Asa Matson, father of Mrs. Reed, came to Herrick with his family in 1813, from the same place in Connecticut. A daughter of Mr. Matson, Mrs. Phelps, is yet living in the township. She was a tailoress, and found ample employment in the making of garments for both sexes.
A Mr. Townsend settled in the hollow cast of Herrickville in 1816, but soon left the country. His was the third house in the town, and was situated on the present farm of Silas Titus. In the same year Mr. Haywood settled near Townsend. He was a blacksmith, and afterwards worked at his trade in Myersburg but still owned the farm at Herrickville. He had one son, John, and one daughter, Betsy, the wife of Ferris Bennett. Elihu Buttles, a Methodist preacher and a dish-turner, came from Massachusetts to Herrick in the early part of 1818, and his accounts of the country were so glowing that his old neighbors Isaac Park, a cousin of Chester Park, of Athens, came in from Berkshire Co., Mass., the same year. He began chopping in February, and moved his family in the October following. He was a tanner by trade, and was an apprentice of Robinson Bolles, the father of all the Bolles in Herrick and Pike. Captain Isaac A. Park, the eldest son of Isaac Park, is still a resident of Herrick. His father and himself were natives of New London, Conn.; but when the captain was an infant the family moved to Otis, Berkshire Co., Mass., and from thence to Herrick. The father and mother died on the old place, the former May 7, 1850, at sixty-six years of age. Another son resides in White Haven.
The first break in the forest between Mr. Park's place and Camptown was made on the farm now owned by Hiram Camp. The fallow was cut by Mr. Park and Robert Depue, in 1821. They carried their rations on their backs from Wyalusing creek. Depue made a little improvement, and soon after left, and Hiram Camp succeeded to it.
In 1818, also, James Hines came and settled on the farm now occupied by the widow Platt. He had two daughters, Minerva and Betsey. In 1820, Calvin Stone came. He married Betsey Haywood, and settled on the farm now owned by W. W. Haywood. He was for a time a justice of the peace, and died on the farm in 1859 or '60. He was a brother of Raphael and Luther Stone.
About I825 Reuben Atwood settled in East Herrick. He is still living and in good health, though upwards of ninety years of age. In 1822, Charles Squires, of Connecticut, settled on the farm now occupied by Pembroke, his son. This year Isaac Camp built the saw-mill near the place where he afterwards lived. He moved in with his family in 1825. Albert Camp lived on the next farm to his father, and Lacey Camp made a beginning on the place where Crawford now lives. Deacon Charles Stevens, Micajah Slocum, and Ezekiel Mintz came in 1824. Daniel Durand came in 1824 or '25. Adam Overpeck came in the same year, a short time after Mr. Durand. He was recently buried, nearly ninety four years of age. He came from Monroe County, and had three sons with him, took up a large farm, and lived in the same neighborhood. Nathan B. Whitman came into Herrick in 1828 or '29, and settled where Ephraim Platt now lives. Henry Wells made a beginning on the Durand place, clearing a small piece and setting out a few apple trees. He sold out after two years to James Clark. Durand made a beginning beyond Wells, a short time before the latter came in.
THE BALLIBAY SETTLEMENT
Was begun in 1826 or '27. The earlier settlers were William Nesbit, Nathaniel Nesbit, Alexander Dougherty, James Lee, James Wood, William Hillis, and Richard Hillis. They were all natives of Ballibay, Ireland, and settled near each other.
The first white child born in the township is supposed to have
been a member of Charles Squire's family. The first death is said
to have been that of Daniel Durand, and the first wedding that of Matthew
Wilding and Miss Lydia M. Camp, about 1829. The first schoolhouse
was built about 1829. The first school taught had 20 pupils in attendance,
of whom Mr. Durand sent seven. The first religious meetings were
held at the house of Mr. Durand, who was the only Baptist then in the town.
A great reformation occurred here about 1835, under the preaching of Elder
Davis Dimock, a Baptist clergyman, assisted by J. W. Parker and Smith Bixby,
a licentiate, who was afterwards ordained in the same house. The
different religious denominations are about equally represented in the
Hon. George Landon, a resident of Herrick, has represented the district composed of Bradford, Wyoming, and Susquehanna twice in the State senate.