History of Tioga County, Pennsylvania

More than one hundred years have passed away since the first white settlers built their cabins along the Cowanesque and Tioga rivers and commenced laying the corner-stone of American civilization within the confines of what is now Tioga county. The Indian occupants had been pushed back farther into the wilderness by the advancing tide of progress, and in their place came the hardy, resolute, intelligent pioneers whose descendants now occupy the land. Several generations have come and gone since these events occurred, and the historian of to-day finds a difficult task to unravel the story and harmonize the many conflicting accounts that tradition has handed down from one generation to another.

In writing a history of Tioga county it has been our aim to preserve, as far as possible, a chronological order. Its topographical and geological features come first, followed by a sketch of the Indians whose numerous camping sites, paths and villages prove that "The Land of Tioga" was a favorite dwelling place and hunting ground. The Caucasian race came next, holding aloft the torch of civilization the founders of communities in which the church and the school followed in the wake of the cabin home. With the gradual settlement of the country came the erection of the county, the establishment of a county seat, civil organization and courts of justice. The early construction of roads, the improvement of waterways and the building of railroads furnished transportation for the product of the farm, the mill and the mine, thus keeping pace with the industrial development of the country. The official history of the county has been carefully compiled, and the names of her citizens who have filled public office in the Nation, the State and the county have thus been preserved. The legal and medical professions; the pioneer fathers who served in the Revolution and War of 1812; a roster of Tioga's sons who went out to defend the flag during the dark days of civil strife; the "Literature of Tioga," and the creation and growth of townships, boroughs and villages all find appropriate mention in the pages of this work.

The labor involved in this undertaking required the examination of state, county, borough and township records; the careful perusal of books, pamphlets, newspaper files, old family documents, deeds and letters, and the personal interviewing of local authorities in every part of the county. To John F. Meginness, Esq., of Williamsport, the veteran historian of the West Branch valley, was intrusted the first twenty-two chapters of the book, and he spent over a year in their compilation. The remaining thirty-six chapters embraced in the general history, were compiled by Mr. John Meagher, an experienced and pains-taking writer, with the exception of Chapter XLIV. contributed by Rev. David Craft, of Lawrcneeville. The chapter on "Coal Mines and Mining" was also written by Mr. Meagher, and the whole work was compared, revised and edited under the personal supervision of the senior member of the firm, who has had a wide experience in this line of historical effort.

 

Table of Contents

CHAPTER VI.
County Organization Completed... 71-79

CHAPTER VII.
Early Courts and Cases... 80-93

CHAPTER VIII.
Internal Improvements... 93-108

CHAPTER IX.
Industrial Development... 109-119

CHAPTER X.
Coal Mines and Mining... 119-132

CHAPTER XI.
Public Buildings and Officials... 132-144

CHAPTER XII.
The Bench and Bar... 145-188

CH.VPTEK XIII.
The Medical Profession... 189-206

CHAPTER XIV.
Early Military History... 206-216

CHAPTER XV.
War of the Rebellion... 216-249

CHAPTER XVI.
Literature of Tioga... 249-258

CHAPTER XVII.
Wellsbobo... 258-274

CHAPTER XVIII.
Wellsbobo (Continued)... 275-295

CHAPTER XIX.
Wellsbobo (Continued)... 295-316

CHAPTER XX.
Wellsbobo (Continued)... 317-327

CHAPTER XXI.
Wellsbobo (Continued)... 327-334

CHAPTER XXII.
Wellsbobo (Continued)... 335-349

CHAPTER XXIII.
Delmar Township... 350-360

CHAPTER XXIV.
Charleston Township... 360-369

CHAPTER XXIV.
Middlebury Township... 369-378

CHAPTER XXVI.
Farmington Township... 379-383

CHAPTER XXVII.
Elkland Borouoh... 384-394

CHAPTER XXVIII.
Osceola Bororugh... 395-404

CHAPTER XXIX.
Nelson Borough... 404-411

CHAPTER XXX.
Deerfield Township... 412-420

CHAPTER XXXI.
Knoxville Borough... 421-430

CHAPTER XXXII.
Westfield Township... 430-437

CHAPTER XXXIII.
Westfield Borough... 438-449

CHAPTER XXXIV.
Brookfield Township... 449-456

CHAPTER XXXV.
Chatham Township... 457-463

CHAPTER XXXVI.
Clymer Township... 463-469

CHAPTER XXXVII.
Shippen Township... 469-474

CHAPTER XXXVIII.
Gaines Township... 475-481

CHAPTER XXXIX.
Elk Township... 483-485

CHAPTER XI.
Morris Township... 486-493

CHAPTER XLI.
Duncan Township... 498-504

CHAPTER XLII.
Tioga Township... 498-504

CHAPTER XLIII.
Tioga Township... 505-520

CHAPTER XLIV.
Lawrence Township and Lawrenceville... 520-542

CHAPTER XLV.
Jackson Township... 543-550

CHAPTER XLVI.
Rutland Township... 551-556

CHAPTER XLVII.
Sullivan Township... 557-566

CHAPTER XLVIII.
Richmond Township... 567-574

CHAPTER XLIX
Mansfield Borough... 575-592

CHAPTER L.
Covington Township... 593-596

CHAPTER LI.
Covington Borough... 507-604

CHAPTER LII.
Bloss Township... 604-610

CHAPTER LIII.
Blosburg Borough... 611-623

CHAPTER LIV.
Hamilton Township... 625-630

CHAPTER LV.
Ward Township... 630-632

CHAPTER LVI.
Fall Brook Borough... 633-638

CHAPTER LVII.
Liberty Township... 639-649

CHAPTER LVIII
Union Township... 649-654

CHAPTER LIX.
Biographical Sketches... 655-780

CHAPTER LX.
Biographical Sketches... 780-867

CHAPTER LXI.
Biographical Sketches... 867-947

CHAPTER LXII.
Biographical Sketches... 947-986

CHAPTER LXIII.
Biographical Sketches... 987-1049

CHAPTER LXIV.
Biographical Sketches... 1050-1107

CHAPTER LXV.
Biographical Sketches... 1107-1160

Index... 1161-1186
Map of Tioga County... 16

 

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Before proceeding to write a general history of Tioga county, from its earliest settlement to the present, it is deemed best to first deal with its topographical and geological features, and to give, from the scientific sources averrable, some idea of how, through the ages that have elapsed since the beginning of time, the surface of the county came to take on its present varied and picturesque appearance. In doing this, a free use has been made of the excellent report of Andrew Sherwood, of Mansfield, Tioga county, which appears in Volume G, of the Second Geological Survey of Pennsylvania.