History of McKean County
J.H. Beers, Chicago, 1890
Hamilton Township

HAMILTON TOWNSHIP is bounded on the north by Corydon township, on the east by Lafayette township, on the south by Wetmore township, and on the west by Warren county. In 1879 the followed described territory, taken from Wetmore township, was added to its southwestern corner: Warrants 2514, 2597, 2400, 2394, 2399, 2352, 2338, 2465, 2563, 2395, 2318 and 2391.

Kinzua creek, which rises in Keating township, flows in a general westerly course to the confluence with the South branch, five miles due north of Wetmore, thence northwesterly, and passes out of the township near its northwest corner. Chappel fork and its numerous feeders divide the north one-half, and Two Mile run, a branch of the Tionesta, divides the southwest annex, as it runs northwest from Wetmore via Ludlow, leaving the county a point west of Windfall run. Wild Cat run flows southwest into Two Mile, while numerous small streams course down the plateau openings into the streams named. Paine's summit, in the north, is the highest measured elevation, being about 2,100 feet above tide level; the lowest, 1,240 feet, where the Kinzua enters Warren county. At Ludlow depot the sub-Olean conglomerate is exposed, its top being 116 feet above the track. At the Hulings & Davis well, drilled in the fall of 1878, one and one-half miles northeast of this exposure, 48 feet of Olean, 343 feet of Mauch Chunk and Pocono, 60 of Red rock, 160 of shale and slate, and 40 of Red rock were penetrated before the Chemung formation was reached, at a depth of 651 feet. Through the Chemung the drill penetrated 379 feet of white slate; at a depth of 1,950 feet struck fossiliferous shale, and at 1,957 feet the hard slate and shale, or the Bradford oil sand, down to 2,011 feet. The well was cased dry at 360 feet. In the hill north of Ludlow detatched sandstone and conglomerate exists and in some places red soil.

Hamilton township claimed a population of 539 in 1880, including the 215 residents of Ludlow. In November, 1888, there were 111 Republicans, 84 Democratic and 14 Prohibition votes cast, or a total of 209, which number multiplied by five gives a fair estimate of the present population, 1,045.

The officers elected in 1889 were: Supervisors, Frank Morrison, Otto Lawson; school directors, H. Morlin, A. Logan; town clerk, J.B. Richardson; justice of the peace, J.K. Bates; constable, H.J. Parker; collector, J.K. Bates; auditor, E.B. Fisk; judge of election, First District, A. Logan; inspectors, First District, C.O. Nelson, H. Goff; judge of election, Second District, M. Strong; inspectors, Mat. Morrison, J.H. Crozier.

The resident tax-payers of Hamilton township in 1836-37, as certified by George Morrison, assessor, were

  • George Morrison (saw-mill owner)
  • David Sears (saw-mill owner)
  • Caleb Chappel (farmer)
  • William English (who owned two horses)
  • Jonathan and David E. Dunbar
  • Jonathan Marsh and Thomas Pound (who had not yet improved their little farms)
  • Morrison & Harrison (saw-mill)
  • Samuel Morrison
  • Isaiah Morrison
  • Root & Beeman

Ludlow is a thriving village in the extreme western part of the township, situated on the Philadelphia & Erie Railroad. Its industries are chiefly the manufacture of lumber, leather and carbon black. J.G. Curtis, who came to the village in 1869, erected the Ludlow Tannery and began the manufacture of leather, and in 1886 established the firm of Curtis, Maxwell & Co. Mr. Curtis is also largely interested in the manufacture of lumber, as well as in the mercantile business. A post-office and several general stores are also located at this point. The A.R. Blood Carbon Works are very extensive, and are under the supervision of P.F. Riordan.

Deputy Supreme President G.W. Brown, of Youngsville, Penn., organized Ludlow Union, E.A.U., June 28, 1889, at Ludlow, with fifty-one applicants for charter, and with the following officers:

  • Chancellor, J.K. Bates
  • advocate, A.W. Vantassel
  • president, John Gibbs
  • vice-president, Mrs. Jennie Richardson
  • auxiliary, Miss Hanna Nolin
  • secretary, Mrs. Millie Bates
  • treasurer, Mrs. J.G. Curtis
  • accountant, H.H. Curtis
  • chaplain, Mrs. C.H. Loucks
  • warden, D.G. Curtis
  • sentinel, Mrs. A. Cameron
  • watchman, P.F. Riordan
  • conductor, H.M. Swick
  • assistant conductor, Mrs. H.M. Swick
  • trustee, J.G. Curtis
  • examining physician, G.T. Pryor, M.D.
  • representative to Grand Union, J.K. Bates
  • alternate, P.F. Riordan

Wetmore is a busy little lumber town on the Philadelphia & Erie Railroad. Here Thomas Keelor has his extensive lumber mills and mercantile establishment. L.D. Wetmore's lumber industries are also located here, as well as a post-office.

Hamilton Township Biographical Sketches

JAMES ANDERSON, merchant, Morrison's, was born in Kent county, England, near London, October 25, 1814, a son of William and Mary (Bainbridge) Anderson. He lived in his native county until seventeen years of age, and learned the cutter's trade in London. In 1831 he came to America, and for a year was employed as cutter in a wholesale clothing house, and then removed to Corydon, Penn., and opened a general store, being one of the first merchants of the town. He was obliged to undergo many hardships in the early days of McKean county, but has ever been a live, energetic business man, and is now one of the leading citizens of the township. He has served one term as commissioner of McKean county, and has been justice of the peace thirty-five years. He was married February 22, 1841, to Miss Isabelle Hoop, of Lafayette, Penn. Mr. Anderson's father, William Anderson, was born in Kent county, England, October 5, 1783, and his mother was born in Pontefract, England, September 1, 1787. They were married May 6, 1806. In 1809 William Anderson bought a captain's commission in the English army, and served until after the battle of Waterloo, when he sold his commission and went into the mercantile business in London. In 1829 he came to the United States, for a year was in business in Utica, N.Y., and in 1830 bought a large tract of land in McKean county, Penn., and was one of its pioneer settlers. December 24, 1836, after a visit at his son's, James Anderson, of Corydon, he started home through the woods afoot. The snow was very deep, and the weather very cold. It is supposed that he became wearied and sat down on a log to rest, as he was found the next day, December 25, by Mr. Thomas, the mail carrier, between Smethport and Warren, Penn., frozen to death, in a sitting posture. His widow departed this life at 8 o'clock on the morning of December 3, 1889, at the advanced age of one hundred and two years.

J. G. CURTIS, tanner, merchant and lumber manufacturer, Ludlow, was born in Fairfield county, Conn., November 7, 1830, a son of John and Lucy (Blackman) Curtis. John Curtis was one of the pioneers of Fairfield county, and a tanner by trade. Mr. Curtis received an ordinary education, and when eighteen years of age left home and learned the machinist's trade at Naugatuck, Conn.; afterward went to Painted Post, N.Y., and later traveled as a journeyman workman for several years. He afterward, in connection with J.D. Hamilton, of New York, built a tannery at Curtis Station, N.Y., which they operated for eight years, after which he took charge of the Lehigh Tannery at White Haven, Penn., for Thomas Scull & Sons, for three years. He then erected a tannery at Emporium, Penn., the firm being styled Hamilton, Curtis & Co. In 1869 he came to Ludlow and built the present Ludlow tannery, making harness and rough leather, associating with him Mr. Maxwell, in 1886, under the firm name of Curtis, Maxwell Co., for the purpose of finishing shoe leather. Mr. Curtis also operates an extensive mercantile business at Ludlow, and is interested in manufacturing lumber. IN 1855 he married Miss Mary Chambers, a native of Yates county, N.Y., and they have two sons, Daniel and John S., living at home. Mr. Curtis is a supporter of the Republican party, and he and family are members of the Episcopal Church. He has served as postmaster at Ludlow since 1882.

GEORGE P. FOULKROD, lumberman, P.O. Bradford, was born in Tioga county, Penn., January 17, 1849. When he was sixteen years old his parents moved to Sheffield, Penn., where he grew to manhood. His father was a lumberman, and he went into the mill to learn to fit saws, becoming an expert in the business, and he has fitted saws for the best lumberman in McKean county. In 1888 he located at Martindale, Hamilton township, built a mill, and now does a good business, cutting 25,000 feet of lumber per day. He is one of the successful lumbermen of the county, and is a prominent and influential citizen. He is a member of Lodge No. 373, I.O.O.F., of Kinzua, Penn. Mr. Foulkrod was married October 15, 1877, to Miss Sarah S. Springer, of Ludlow, Penn.

EDWARD N. HALLOCK, lumberman, P.O. Bradford, was born in Crawford county, Penn., August 29, 1852. When he was sixteen years old he began clerking in a bank in Erie, and remained there five years, then accepted a position with a pipe line company in Foxburg, Penn. In 1879 he moved to Bradford, Penn., and bought oil and lumber property, and has since been engaged in both the production of petroleum, and also owns a fine saw-mill at Watsonville, where he turns out 25,000 feet of lumber per day. Mr. Hallock was married May 21, 1878, to Miss Phebe E. Keith, of Rome, N.Y., and they have two children: Charles S. and Florence B. Samuel T. Hallock, father of Edward N. Hallock, was born in Ulster county, N.Y., July 4, 1809, and died in Crawford county, Penn., September 25, 1877. Sara C. (Baily) Hallock, the mother of Edward N., was born in Greenfield, Mass., May 6, 1814, and died in Crawford county, Penn., November 12, 1882. Charles F. Keith, father of Phebe E. (Keith) Hallock, was born in Herkimer county, N.Y., September 19, 1823, and died in Oneida county, N.Y., August 27, 1883. Jerusha (Read) Keith, mother of Mrs. P.E. Hallock, was born in Herkimer county, N.Y., in 1826, and died there in 1855.

H. W. MARTINDALE, lumberman, Bradford, was born in Erie, Erie Co., Penn., June 2, 1855, a son of A.C. and Abbie (Borrows) Martindale, former a native of Erie county, and a farmer by occupation, latter a native of Jamestown, Chautauqua Co., N.Y.; there are still living in Erie county, and are prominent members of the Presbyterian Church. They have three children living: Elsie (wife of J.J. Wheelock, of Titusville), Ruby (living at home) and H.W. H.W. Martindale was reared on the homestead farm, and received his education at the State normal school at Edinborough. At the age of twenty-three years he left home and located at Bolivar, N.Y., engaging in the livery business. He was also a commercial traveler for three years. In 1884 he came to McKean county, and accepted a position with H.S. Southard as foreman of his lumber-mills in Hamilton township. This position he held for three years, and has since been engaged in manufacturing lumber for B. Nesmith & Co., employing sixty men. In 1880 he married Miss Ida, daughter of W.H. Burlingame, of Holland, Erie Co., N.Y., and they have one child: Roy E. Mrs. Martindale is a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church. Mr. Martindale in politics is a Republican.

Contributed by Maureen M. (Buckley) Lee