History of Erie county, Pennsylvania

In entering upon the publication of a history of Erie Comity, the difficulty and importance of the task were not underestimated by the publishers. A. desire for such a work has long existed, a work that would faithfully present a correct, concise and clean record of events, beginning with the Indian tribes that once inhabited the land, thence tracing its history down to the present period.

The burning of the court house, on the 23d of March, 1823, which destroyed the records of the first twenty years after the organization of the county, has ever been a source of annoyance to those tracing the original titles to lands through the names of the first settlers. This work shows where the titles of the lands in Erie County originated, to whom the first sales were made, and the locations of the earliest pioneers, thus supplying many missing links in the fabric of its recorded history.

The book may be said to have had its inception in 1879, when Mr. Benjamin Whitman, having sold the Erie Observer, which he had edited since January, 1861, made a number of short tours over the county for the joint purpose of reviving old friendships and settling his outstanding accounts. After one or two trips he commenced writing up a series of articles for the Observer under the heading of "County Jaunts," and finding them received with favor, conceived the idea of expanding them into a history of the county. The effort of Mr. Whitman was more to give a plain and correct statement of facts than to indulge in fine writing, for which, it is needless to add, there is little opportunity in a work of this kind. His manuscript was purchased by the publishers, and is mainly embodied in the book.

 

TABLE OF CONTENTS

PART I.
HISTORY OF PENNSYLVANIA.

CHAPTER I. - Introductory... 15-23
CHAPTER II. 23-33
CHAPTER III. 33-35
CHAPTER IV. 35-41
CHAPTER V. 41-50
CHAPTER VI. 51-61
CHAPTER VII. 61-69
CHAPTER VIII. 69-76
CHAPTER IX. 75-89
CHAPTER X. 89-97
CHAPTER XI. 98-104
CHAPTER XII. 104-114
CHAPTER XIII. 114-121
CHAPTER XIV. 122-131
Gubernatorial Table... 132

PART II.
HISTORY OF ERIE COUNTY.

CHAPTER I. General Description, etc... 137-144
CHAPTER II. Physical Geography... 145-160
CHAPTER III. Geology... 151-166
CHAPTER IV. Streams, Lakes, Bays, Bridges, and Culverts... 155-166
CHAPTER V. Pre-historic Remains and Natural Curiosities... 166-172
CHAPTER VI. Indian History... 172-185
CHAPTER VII. The French and English... 185-194
CHAPTER VIII. The Triangle... 194-200
CHAPTER IX. The American Occupation... 201-209
CHAPTER X. Anthony Wayne... 209-212
CHAPTER XI. Land Matters... 213-226
CHAPTER XII. The Pioneers... 229-233
CHAPTER XIII. Common Roads, Stage Lines, Mail Routes, Taverns, etc... 233-244
CHAPTER XIV. Religious Organizations Churches Graveyards, etc... 245-262
CHAPTER XV. Mills and Factories... 262-270
CHAPTER XVI. Lake Navigation.... 270-283
CHAPTER XVII. County Buildings... 283-293
CHAPTER XVIII. Perry's Victory and the War of 1812-14... 293-320
CHAPTER XIX. Bench and Bak 320-332
CHAPTER XX. Notable Events... 333-340
CHAPTER XXI. Political History Annual Record... 340-430
CHAPTER XXII. The Canal and Railroads... 430-444
CHAPTER XXIII. Physicians and Dentists... 444-451
CHAPTER XXIV. Schools, Academies, etc... 451-456
CHAPTER XXV. Newspapers 459-465
CHAPTER XXVI. War for the Union.... 465-489
CHAPTER XXVII. Miscellaneous... 490-500

PART III.
HISTORY OF THE CITY OF ERIE.

CHAPTER I. Historical... 503-5l9
CHAPTER II. General Description and Progress... 519-534
CHAPTER III. Municipal Government... 535-550
CHAPTER IV. Churches... 550-586
CHAPTER V. Education and Societies.. 586-600
CHAPTER VI. Private Corporations, Cemeteries and Charitable Institutions... 600-613
CHAPTER VII. Leading Manufacturing Interests... 613-649
Board of Trade and Business Statistics... 649-651

PART IV.
TOWNSHIP HISTORIES.

CHAPTER I. Mill Creek Township 655-666
CHAPTER II. Waterford Township and Borough of Waterford... 666-684
CHAPTER III. Union Township and Borough of Union City... 684-695
CHAPTER IV. Le Boeuf Township and Borough of Mill Village... 696-703
CHAPTER V. Venango Township and Borough of Wattsburg... 704-715
CHAPTER VI. Harbor Creek Township... 715-723
CHAPTER VII. North East Township and Borough of North East... 728-739
CHAPTER VIII. Fairview Township and Borough of Fairview... 739-749
CHAPTER IX. Springfield Township... 750-760
CHAPTER X. Conneaut Township and Borough of Albion... 760-769
CHAPTER XI. Elk Creek Township 770-775
CHAPTER XII. McKean Township and Borough of Middleboro... 775-782
CHAPTER XIII. Greenfield Township... 782-786
CHAPTER XIV. Greene Township... 789-793
CHAPTER XV. Washington Township and Borough of Edinboro... 793-802
CHAPTER XVI. Concord Township and Borough of Elgin... 803-806
CHAPTER XVII. City of Corry... 809-823
CHAPTER XVIII. Wayne Township... 824-832
CHAPTER XIX. Amity Township... 832-835
CHAPTER XX. Girard Township and Boroughs of Girard and Lockport... 835-851
CHAPTER XXI. Franklin Township... 851-854
CHAPTER XXII. Summit Township... 855-860

PART V.
BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCHES - ERIE AND CORRY.

City of Erie (alphabetically arranged...) 863-975
City of Erie (not alphabetically arranged Hon. S.M. Brainerd)... 976
City of Corry... 977-1006

PART VI.
TOWNSHIP BIOGRAPHIES.

Amity Township... 3
Concord Township... 11
Conneaut Township... 16
Elk Creek Township... 29
Fairview Township... 37
Franklin Township... 45
Girard Township... 53
Greene Township... 70
Greenfield Township... 75
Harbor Creek Township... 80
Le Boeuf Township... 98
McKean Township... 102
Mill Creek Township... 116
North East Township... 134
Springfield Township... 152
Summit Township... 164
Union Township...168
Venango Township... 183
Washington Township... 203
Waterford Township... 216
Wayne Township... 233

 

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In the early colonization upon the American continent, two motives were principally operative. One was the desire of amassing sudden wealth without great labor, which tempted adventurous spirits to go in search of gold, to trade valueless trinkets to the simple natives for rich furs and skins, and even to seek, amidst the wilds of a tropical forest, for the fountain whose healing waters could restore to man perpetual youth. The other was the cherished purpose of escaping the unjust restrictions of Government, and the hated ban of society against the worship of the Supreme Being according to the honest dictates of conscience, which incited the humble devotees of Christianity to forego the comforts of home, in the midst of the best civilization of the age, and make for themselves a habitation on the shores of a new world, where they might erect altars and do homage to their God in such habiliments as they preferred, and utter praises in such note as seemed to them good. This purpose was also incited by a certain romantic temper, common to the race, especially noticeable in youth, that invites to some uninhabited spot, and Rasselas and Robinson Crusoe-like to begin life anew.