History of Bradford County, Pennsylvania
Some distinguished pundit has remarked that the nation which best knows its own history is sure to be made up of the best type of patriots, and the chances are of the highest quality of civilization. If the reader and the writer are agreed on this philosopher's conclusions, then this page need hardly try to do more than simply say: "Here it is — make the most of it."
The attempt has here been made mostly to preserve facts, recorded and otherwise, that may be excellent material for the historian, who, let us hope, will some day come and tell it in form and manner worthy of the great theme. This is simply saying that no true history is written by the contemporaries of the great eras of a nation's story, and therefore no attempt here is made at history save that of a period three-quarters of a century ago, and the earlier day movements of men that cluster around the pioneers, the Revolution and the early civil history of the formation of the County. If the attempt has been at all successful, then the possessor of this volume may know that he has both a book for future reference as well as one that tells of the inner movements of his ancestors — that forlorn hope
"Who were the first.
That ever burst,
Into that silent sea."
Part I. deals mostly with the past, though bringing the official and social records down to the present hour, yet so far as there is any attempt to discover the secrets of the movements of men's minds as a society, it will be found in this division of the volume.
Part II. presents an immense array of facts concerning nearly every prominent family in the county, both the living and their departed ancestors.
Thus the two are companion pieces, as it were, and as a whole represent something of a vast number of the most prominent people in the eventful story that founded this little empire within our great empire, as well as those who are to day the brawn and brain that are so busy building upon the enduring foundations laid by the immortal conquerors of a continent and the destroyers of tyrants.
One thing is quite certain: Time will add infinite value to this book even if by any lightly estimated now. The consciousness of this fact will rob the sting of any ruthless attack that may be made upon it.
While it is customary in works of this kind to make of the "preface" mostly a means of returning thanks for special favors in aiding and encouraging the enterprise to specified parties; while the sincere thanks are here given, yet so many are entitled to mention that to name all or a greater part is simply impossible, therefore to the good people of Bradford county, one and all, for your considerate aid and repeated kindnesses, thanks — ten thousand thanks.
Table of Contents
MISSIONARIES AND TRADERS 39-44
THE PIONEERS 44-53
EARLY SETTLERS 53-69
THE LOG CABIN 69-79
THE REVOLUTION 79-111
THE SEVENTEEN TOWNSHIPS 111-148
GLEANINGS OF THE EARLY TIMES 148-189
PROGRESS IN CIVIL ORGANIZATION 189-204
WARS AND RUMORS 220-249
INTELLECTUAL PROGRESS IN THE COUNTY 249-271
BRADFORD COUNTY CIVIL LIST 271-280
EMINENT PEOPLE 302-317
STATISTICS AND MISCELLANEA 383-388
Albany Township 388-389
Armenia Township — Alba Borough 389-391
Asylum Township 391-393
Athens Township — Athens, Sayre and South Waverly Boroughs 394-431
Barclay Township 432-432
Burlington Township — Burlington Borough 433-441
Canton Township — Canton Borough 442-453
Columbia Township — Sylvania Borough 453-459
Franklin Township 459-460
Granville Township 460-463
Herrick Township 463-464
LeRoy Township 465-466
Litchfield Township 467-468
Monroe Township — Monroe Borough 468-472
Orwell Township 473-478
Overton Township 478-479
Pike Township — LeRaysville Borough 479-482
Ridgebury Township 482-483
Rome Township — Rome Borough 483-485
Sheshequin Township 485-487
Smithfleld Township 488-489
South Creek Township 490-490
Springfield Township 491-492
Standing Stone Township 495-495
CHAPTER XL VIII.
Terry Township 496-497
The Towandas — Townships and Boroughs 497-531
Troy Township — Troy Borough 532-538
Tuscarora Township 539-541
Ulster Township 541-544
Warren Township 544-546
Wells Township 546-551
West Burlington Township 551-551
Wilmot Township 552-555
Windham Township 556-559
Wyalusing Township — Wyalusing Borough 559-576
Wysox Township 576-578
MISCELLANEOUS - Portraits
Map of Bradford County 15-15
Index, Part I., History 1307-1311
Index, Part II., Biographies 1311-1320
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Bradford County is of itself a little agricultural empire; as beautiful as a painting in her landscapes, and is comparatively rich in all those things that contribute toward the highest and best civilization. Within her borders are 59,095 people, and a larger part of the wealth of the population is in the 6,160 farms which they own and cultivate. Its location on the map, its soils and waters, have determined its place as the favored home of the agriculturist. The numbers of the farms indicate the distribution of these rich acres. There are no powerful land barons here with their swarms of attendant serfs and poverty. Her wealth is great, but it is distributed — the happiest possible condition for man. There is no great city within its borders — boroughs and villages only. Hence, instead of tenement houses, deep cellars, noisome purlieus that mar all great cities, here are small, neat, well-kept farms, clear skies, pure air, crystal waters, happy homes, universal plenty and content. Here are sweet valleys and the sun-kissed old hills — the sacred graves of the departed, the restful, happy trysting places of their children's children. The neat and well- built boroughs and villages are but quiet and orderly places of exchange in supplying the varied wants of a favored people. Here is every com- fort and every reasonable luxury side by side with generous industry and a healthy frugality. While an agricultural county, it is dotted here and there with its necessary mills and factories. Outside the borough of Towanda there are 330 manufactures, and in the county seat are the nail and iron works, the shoe factory, the toy works, Dayton's flouring mill, two foundries and machine shops, a furniture factory, and many small concerns, all contributing to not only the varied employments of the people, but their real and general comfort. A lovely and favored land, indeed! What a haven it presents for the worn and weary who have long struggled for life and air and sun- shine in the roar and filth of the world's great cities. The gaunt pauper, with outstretched hands, begging for bread or medicine, is not here, nor is the rich miser relentlessly coining his heaped-up gold of the tears and the groans of his unpitied victims. Remorseless greed, and that other monster in society, far worse than the miser's cruelest infliction, are practically strangers to the good people of Bradford county. Health, virtue, intelligence and happiness come best to the world amid just such conditions as these. Many a bright young man of the county, fired with ambition to quick wealth or fame, has left his old Bradford home and gone to the great city, and has either regretted the change all his life, or returned and never tired of telling of his joy and happiness in so doing. "Is life worth living?" is not a vexed question here — may it never come to a living soul.