History of Lawrence Co., Indiana (Several Counties)

History of Lawrence County, Indiana
Transcribed passages are from the following book
History of Lawrence and Monroe Counties Indiana
1914 B. F. Bowen & Co. Inc. Indianapolis, Indiana

CHAPTER III Early Settlement of Lawrence County

Lawrence County was first a portion of Knox and Harrison Counties.
In the year 1814 it became identified with Washington County, and in 1816 a part of Orange County. The county of Lawrence itself was created in 1818.……
The first years of the nineteenth century saw very little settlement in the county by white men. The Indians were hostile and the perils of making a home were great. The slow immigration of the tribes to the West had not yet begun, and the pioneer hesitated to be the first to combat with their treacherous customs. The Ohio river was then the avenue of commerce to the Middle west and consequently the settlement of the state proceeded northward from this river. The advance was slow made so by the necessity for large numbers to keep together in order to repel the Indian attacks. Not until the year 1811 the year of the Battle of Tippecanoe, did Lawrence County receive any numbers of white families.
Records show that probably the first settlement of any consequence was made a spot where Leesville, Flinn Township, now stands, on the eastern border of the county. The settlers of this place had left Lee County, Virginia, in 1809 and passed the next winter in Kentucky. In February 1810 they came to the above mentioned place and built a fort near the present grist mill in Leesville. The block-house completed the men journeyed back to Kentucky after their families. These families were the Guthries and Flinns, who were attacked by the Pottawatomies later, and their names have been perpetuated in the history of the county as the highest types of honor, courage and self sacrifice, and today their descendants are numbered among the most respected citizens of Lawrence County.

Daniel Guthrie and his sons and Jacob and William Flinn were the men of the group, and each was a frontiersman skilled in all the arts of pioneer life, in hunting, fishing, farming and in fighting the warlike tribes. Daniel Guthrie is noted as being one of the Continentals who defeated General Braddock prior to the Revolutionary War.

Not until the year 1817 was there a land entry made in the township and then they followed in Rapid succession. Some of these were: R Hunton 1820; M. Wooley 1820; Noah Wright 1819; Thomas Hodges 1817; Isreal Hind 1819; John Parr 1819; H Nichols 1820; James Ellison 1820; Enoch Parr 1817; T Carr 1820; Arthur Parr 1819; Martin Flinn 1820; Patrick Welch 1817; Noah Wright 1820; William White 1820; D Flinn 1820; James Taggert 1820; John Guthrie 1820; Thomas Flinn 1820; Benjamin Drake 1818; William Flinn 1820; J Allen 1820; Hugh Guthrie 1820; Robert Flinn 1819; Benjamin Newkirk 1820; George Stell, John Speer, Ephraim D. Lux, John Trespey, Abraham Sutherland, David White, Alfred Alexander, Jacob Weaver, Moses Flinn, William Smith, Elijah Curry, Micajah Poole and Gamaliel Millgar were early residents around Leesville.
Leesville is the namesake of Lee County, Virginia from whence came the first settlers came to this locality. The town was laid out in June, 1818, and is next to the oldest town recorded in Lawrence County, Bono leading. In 1831 Leesville decided to incorporate by election, and accordingly did so. However, the incorporation did not last very long.

The two Carolinas and Virginia supplied the first settlers of Marion township. The township was named after Gen. Francis Marion, the famous Southern Commander in the Revoluntionary war. In the Spring of 1816 many new settlers began to come in From North and South Catolina among them were George Sheeks, William Erwin, John Finger, Joseph Pless, Elijah Murray, Thomas Rowark, John Sutton, James Boswell and Joseph Boswell. The early land entries of Marion township are as follows: Cuthbert and Thomas Bullitt, 1820: Tetlow, Hughes and Geiger 1820: Moses Gray 1816: R. Hall 1820: Abraham Hartman 1818: Samuel Jackson 1816: Ambrose Carlton 1816: Robert Lewis 1817 and 1816: Samuel Brown 1820: John Edwards 1820: John Maxwell 1819: William Terrill 1816: William Tolliver 1818: Robert McLean 1817: William McLean 1816: Zachariah Sparling 1818: John Workman 1817: William Baldwin 1817: Theophilus Baldwin 1819: Jesse Hill 1817: Martin Hardin 1817: William Maxwell 1819: Charles Tolliver 1817: William Connerly 1817: William Denny 1818: Alfred Maden and John Hays 1818: John Lowery 1817: William Blair 1817: John McLean 1817: James Fulton 1816: Lewis Byram 1817: Henry Speed 1816: William Trueblood 1816: Jonathan Lindley 1816: G. Eli 1817" Joshua Taylor 1817: Robert Fields 1817: William Connelly 1818: George Hinton Jr., Arthur Henrie and Benjamin Drake 1818: William Erwin 1818: Isom Maden 1816: William Carmichael 1818: Joel Conley 1817: Josiah Trueblood 1818: William Connelly 1817: Aaron Davis 1819: Lewis Phillips 1817: Zebedee Wood 1820: Michael Dunihue 1817: David Harris 1817: John Sutton 1817: Robert Hollowell 1816: Robert Fields 1816: Jacob Piles and Jonathon Williams 1815.
Mitchell, Marion township was named in honor of Gen O. M. Mitchell, an officer in the Federal army who died at Huntsville, Alabama in 1862.....and was platted on September 29, 1853 by G. W. Cochran and John Sheeks....West Mitchell an addition was laid out January 17, 1859 by Jonas Finger and on November 26, 1865 there was another addition by D. Kelley & Company.
On December 23, 1864 Mitchell was incorporated as a town.
On July 29, 1907 an election was held in Mitchell to determine whether or not the town should be incorporated as a city, under the statutes of Indiana The result was a majority of four hundred and nine in favor of incorporating.

Guthrie township was the last to be formed in the county, and was named for one of the most prominent families of the early days. The township was formed in the early sixties....When the county was organized in 1818 all of the present Guthrie township was included in Shawswick township, but on the formation of the new township land was taken from Shawswick, Flinn and Bono.
Although some portions of Guthrie township were settled very early, the record of land entries until 1820 is surprisingly small......Land entries until 1820 included: Isreal Hind 1819; Ambrose Carlton 1817; Edward Johnston 1820; William Barnhill 1819; John Kerns 1820; Solomon Bowers 1817; Robert Millsap 1820; Conrad Hoopingarner 1818; Thomas Butler 1820; Daniel Guthrie 1816; J Edwards 1820; Preston Beck 1820; Elisha Simpson 1820; George W Mullis 1817; Cuthbert and Thomas Bullitt 1820 Others included in this early list were Thomas Dixon, William Shadrach, William Holland Sr, John Allen, Robert Millsap and his sons, William and James, Abner Walters, Samuel and William Foster, Benjamin and Isaac Newkirk, Jacob Mullis and John Dowland.
Probably the first settler of Guthrie township was James Connelly, a squatter, and a native of North Carolina, from whence he came to Orange County, Indiana shortly afterward settling here. The year was about 1815, Connelly brought his family with him and for their home he built a double log cabin. Ambrose Carlton with his large family came after Connelly, and in 1816 also Pleasant and Ambrose Parks came from North Carolina to this township after a short sojourn in Bono Township.
William and Thomas Dixon platted this village in the northeast corner of the township on April 8, 1853.
....on the 28th of April 1859 the town of Tunnelton was platted. An addition was added in 1863
The town of Fort Ritner was named in honor of Michael Ritner a foreman in the construction of a tunnel on the old Ohio & Mississippi railroad nearby. Gabriel Brock was the first postmaster, the office havinf been established in 1858.

Due to its location, being near to the older settlements in the southern part of the state, and on the early roads to the north, also its place on the river wich was a much traveled highway, the township has always claimed the first white settlement of the county. William Wright made the first land entry in the county on September 22, 1813.... Other entries up to and including the year 1820 were the following persons: Henry Fulton, Sept. 1817: Cuthbert and Thomas Bullitt, Sept 1820: J. Hikes 1820: Richard C. Anderson 1820: John Edwards 1820: Edward Johnson 1820: Clark Hoggatt and Kitchell 1818: Thomas Blank 1819: Samuel Brown 1816: John Brown 1820: John Hammerlsy, 1818: Thomas Jolly 1820: David Green 1818: Conrad Grass 1818: Solomon Fitzpatrick 1819: David Hummel 1818: Asher Wilson 1820: Elisha Simpson 1817: William Hoggatt 1818.
Bono township originally included a part of what is now Marion and Guthrie townships being one of the five original townships of the county.... Robert Henderson was the first constable.
There is no doubt that Bono township was the scene of the second settlement in the county, Roderick Rawlins and his two nephews, James and Joseph settled in the spring of 1812 on a farm in section 22 later owned by William Turley and near the village of Scottville. These men were very prominent in the early development of the county and took active part in ranger warfare along the frontier.
Bono has the distinction of being the oldest town in Lawrence County, having settled in 1816. The town was laid out on April 4h and the proprieters were William Hoggatt, Marston G. Clark and Joseph Kitchell.
The village of Lawrenceport was laid out on May 17, 1837.. The village is situated at the mouth of Fishing creek on White River.

Of the three townships which form the northern end of the county, Marshall is the center and is next to the smallest in the county. The township was named for John Marshall, the eminent chief justice of the United States. Land entries were made in this township as early as 1816.
Until the year 1820 the land entries were as follows: Jacob Hattabaugh 1816: William Curl 1816: Hamilton Reddick 1817: John Fairley 1819: John Goodwin 1818: Robert Anderson 1819: John Hargis 1816: William Sackey 1817: Jesse Brown 1816: James Culley 1816: Michael Hattabaugh 1816: Jacob Bruner 1818: Henry Brown 1818: John Zumwald 1818: Henry Leonard 1818: Patrick Tyler 1817: Nicholas Bruner 1816: William Quillen 1818: John Dryden 1817: Joshua Gullet 1816: Adam House 1816: Thomas Reynolds 1817: and Absalom Sargeant 1817.
One mile and a half northwest of Oolitic in Marshall township is the little village of Avoca. T. A. Hudson is the postmaster.
Winepark Judah was responsible for the laying of Guthrie on December 10, 1865.
Indianapolis News
written by Hon. James H Willard
....."The story of Palestine, the first county seat of Lawrence county, is romantic and mournful. Since the days when Oliver Goldsmith wrote "The Deserted Village" a tinge of melancholy reminiscence has surrounded those abodes where men had experienced the hope and disappointments and vicissitudes of life, had made their homes for years and then relinquised them for silence and decay. The story of Palestine is indeed a strange one, for it is of a town that at one time promised to be a metropolitan city, but was abandoned by man and reclaimed by nature. Green meadows and forest trees now occupy its former site and not even a foundation stone tells of a vanished town.
1872 Bedford Courthouse

Another of the five original townships in the southwest portion of the county is Spice Valley township... To the year 1820 there were thirty four purchases of land, while in Indian Creek township there were fifty-eight during the same time, thus indicating the relative value of land. These entries were Simon Gilbert, William Lindley, C. an T. Bullitt, Ezekiel Blackwell, Jonathan Lindley, Aquilla Gilbert, Henry Speed, Absalom Field, Thomas Lindley, Joseph Hastings, Abraham Holaday, Thomas Coulter, Josiah Trueblood, Joel Connelly, Josiah Connelly in 1816; Josiah Connely, Joel Connelly, Robert Fields, John Chapman, Gideon Coulter, Henry Cosner, John Connelly in 1817; Jesse Beazley, Nicholds Koon, John Quinn, David Bruner, William Cochran, John Luttrell, ROger McKnight, and John Swaim in 1818; William Maxwell, Francis Tincher, in 1819; John Sanders, William Hoard in 1820. Josiah Connelly was the first constable.

"William Hoard, at the time of his death, in 1853, owned about six hundred acres of land and out of this farm the town of Huron was platted in 1859 by his heirs and descendants. No one of the earlier settlers had left so many direct descendants in this and neighboring townships as William Hoard. The furnished twelve or fifteen soliders to the Union army during the Civil War."

" Owing to the lateness of her settlement Spice Valley cannot boast of any Revolutionary or 1812 veterans and only two Mexican veterans (known to the write) sleep within her borders, Jospeh Bosler and George Brinkworth But it was in the Civil war that Spice Valley made a record that is unequaled by any other of her sister townships in Lawrence County and doubtless by few in the entire state. Her quota was always full and the draft was never resorted to. I feel safe in saying that this was true of no other township in Lawrence or the neighboring counties of Orange and Martin. I dare say there are more old soliders residing in the vicinity of Huron in proportion to the population than any community in the state barring a soliders home."

" George W. Jones....his grandfather Thomas Jones settled a mile east of Huron in the early twenties and on this farm he was reared and later owned it and collected together a farm of over one thousand two hundred acres. He is the last of the early settlers and soon will sleep with the stalwart pioneers by whose side he struggled so faithfully to build up a community."

"The townhip is indebted to two branches of the powerful Burton family which did so much in the development of the sister township of Marion, but two came to Spice Valley, Harden and Eli. The first was a Baptist preacher and farmer and a great deal more. He was a splendid type of man. He reared an intelligent family. Drs. John W. Burton and George W. Burton were his sons and did splendid service in their profession. Tow other sons Isom and Hardin taught many schools in Spice Valley and were instrumental in bringing the schools to the high plane they have attained......"
Written by T. M. Brinkworth

On February 12, 1859, John Terrell platted the town of Huron, on a part of the northeast quarter of section 6 township 3 north, range 2 west, and in April 1868 an addition was made. In January 1873 Huron was incorporated.
The date of the platting of Bryantsville was May 28, 1835 and Henry Connelly was the first settler. The town was first named Paris but was later changed to its present name.

The name Perry was given in honor of the famous sea commander who conquered the Bristish on Lake Erie during the war of 1812. When Lawrence County was organized in 1818 all of the territory now in Perry township was a part of Indian Creek township. It was converted into an independent township on May 14, 1822.
The following is a list of some of the early land entries in Perry township, including some of the most prominent men in the county; Eli Powell 1817; ALexander Clark 1817; Jesse Davis 1818; Warner Davis 1816; Robert Holaday 1816; Ralph Lowder 1819; Benjamin Phipps 1818; Michael and Mathias Sears 1817; William Newcomb 1817; William Sackley 1817; William Kern 1817; Thomas Hopper 1817; William Hopper 1817; Jonathan Osborn 1816; Azel Bush 1818; Isaac V. Buskirk 1818; Joseph Taylor 1816; Benjamin Dawson 1818; Archibald Wood 1816; John Gray 1817; William Kerr 1817; William Tincher 1817; Reuban Davis 1816; Seymour Cobb 1816; John Armstrong 1817; Samuel Steel 1817; John Duncan 1817; Coats and Samuel Simon 1817; John Dishman 1818; Adam Hostetter 1817. Others noteworthy among the early settlers were: Wesley Short, William Whitted, Aden Gainey, Samuel Owens, Caleb Odell, Nathan Melton, Kenneth Dye, John Jarvis, William McDowell, James McDowell, Thomas Cobb, Dixon Cobb, and later, Noah Bridwell, Elza Woodward, Zedekiah Robinson, Mecart Helmer, Samuel Tincher, Franklin Crooke, M. C. Rafferty, Milton Short, John and Thomas Hert, Thomas Armstrong, John Hedrick, John Rainbolt, Andrew McDaniel, James Beaty, Booker Wilson, Martin Holmes, James Garton, Eliphalet Pearson, John D. Pedigo, John Vestal and A. H. Gainey.
Samuel Owens laid out the village of Springville on July 11, 1832, On section 22, in the central portion of Perry township. Later additions were made in 1836 and 1846.

Indian creek township is the center one of the three which form the western border of Lawrence county. The name is taken from the creek that enters at the northwest corner, leaving near the southwest corner. Salt creek and the East fork of White river form the eastern and southern bound aries. The township is one of the original five, and now is much smaller than at first.
A few of the men who entered land in this township during the days up until 1820 were: Henry Speed. John Towell, Simon Ruebottom, Benjamin Beeson, Silas Dixon, Jonathan Lindley, Ephraim Lee, Isaac Williams, Joseph Richardson, Seymour Cobb, Archibald Wood, Felter Hughes, James Garton, David Sears, Jesse Towell and Peyton Wilson, in 1816; David Ribelin, James Duncan. Adam Siler. John Duncan, John Cloud, John Roberts, Reuben Short, Jeremiah Boone, Elijah Boone, John Rochester, Wesley Short, John Crook, Daniel Todd, Abraham Kern, Robert Garton and R. Browning, William Dillard, John and Michael Waggoner, Joseph Sargeant, Henry Waggoner, Elbert Howard, Sullivan and Duncan, John Duncan, in 1817; Robert Wood, William Gartin, Henry Piersoll, Holland Pitman, William Dougherty, James Mulloy, Isaac Waggoner, William Cochran, Robert Mitchell, Peyton Wilson and Martin Ribelin, in 1818; Andrew Howard, Sterling Sims, John Short, Albert Howard. Benjamin Chestnut and William Woodrun, in 1819; John Donaldson, in 1820.
On the banks of the East fork of the White River, in the southwestern portion of Indian Creek township, is situated the village of Williams
The village of Fayetteville was laid out on February 6, 1838, by Ezra Kern, and in October 1874, an addition was made to the original by Noah Kern..
Robert C McAfee platted the village of Silverville in 1855, on the 26th of Jul.

The northeast corner of Lawrence county is the location of Pleasant Run township, and it was created when the county was organized in 1818... Back, Leatherwood, Little Salt and Pleasant creeks cross the township, and from the latter the name is derived. In the list of Lawrence county townships Pleasant Run had the fewest settlers until 1829, having but twenty-three land entries, as follows: Jesse Gilstrap, 1820; William Clark, 1820; Adam Helton, 1820; William J. Anderson, 1818; Arnold Helton, 1818; F. Terrill 1820; Heirs of Abraham Martin, 1820; Rene Julin, 1818; R. Brooks. 1820; Samuel Gwathney, 1820; Joseph Dayton, 1816; Joseph Trimble, 1820; E. Parr, 1820; Edmund Garrison, 1820; James Mundell. 1816; John McClellan, 1820; David McKinney, 1816; Edward Moore, 1820; Cuthbert and Thomas Bullitt, 1820; Vana Wilson, 1817; Jacob Woolery 1820; Edward Tewell, 1820; and John N. Nichols, 1817.
The town of Heltonville, Pleasant Run township, was platted on September 8. 1845 by Andrew Helton, on the west half of the northeast quarter of section 26, township 6 north, range 1 east. The town originally comprised twenty-seven lots. but since that time several additions have been made, enlarging the town.

In the central part of the county is Shawswick township. On the south the East fork of White river Rows, and on the west Salt creek.
The number of land entries made prior to and in 1820 proves how inviting the locality was to the settler coming on his way to the northward. These early land entries were as follows: James Mandell; Samuel Lindley, Ezekiel Blackwell, Hiram Kilgore, Charles Kilgore, Preston Beck, William Bristoe, Reuben and Simpson Kilgore, Marguis Knight, Joseph Glover, James Gregory, John Hays, William Thornton, William Foot, John Gardner, John Williams and William Fisk in 1816; Dixon Brown, David Johnson, Thomas Thompson, John Horton, Meicher Fehgelman, Robert Whitley, Vinson Williams, Peter Galbert, Martin Ribelin, William Dougherty, John Hawkins, Thomas M Ross and McDonald. James Maxwell, Samuel Dougherty, Robert Dougherty, Alexander Butler, George Silvers, Thomas Elrod, Roger McKnight, Jacob Castleman and Thomas Allen in 1817; Pleasant Padgett, Lewis Woody, James Blair, Andrew Owen, James Riggins, Mark Tally, William Denson, Stephen Shipman, Absalom Hart, Abraham Mitchell, John Spears, David Wilson, Timothy Ward, Arta Garrison, Ebenezer McDonald. Fetler and Hughes, Peter Harmonson, James Erwin and Henry McGree in 1818; T. McAfee, Michael Johnson, R. Bowles. James Blair, James Denson, Joseph James, James Owens in 1819; Jacob Hikes, Cuthbert and Thomas Bullitt, Dixon Brown, Roger McKnight, Jacob Geiger, Bartholomew Thatcher, Fetler and Hughes, Philip Starr, J. Thompson, James Allen, Jonathan Henderson,
Isaac Jamison, Samuel Gwathney, Thomas Mafflth, James Pace, Thomas Hill and Jacob Clark, in 1820.
Shawswick was one of the original five townships, and the name came in the following manner: A judge in the early history of the state bore the name of Wick, and he had many admirers in this county who insisted that the township should be named after him. One of the county commissioners at the same time, by the name of Beazley, had a comrade by the name of Shaw, who was killed in the battle of Tippecanoe. Beazley advocated the name of Shaw and had many supporters in his desire. The two parties finally compromised on the name Shawswick.
Three miles and half northeast of Bedford in Shawswick township, is situated the town of Oolitic....Under the statutes of Indiana, the village of Oolitic was incorporated as a town in 1900.