From Franklin Ellis' History of That Part of the Susquehanna and Juniata Valleys
Embraced in the Counties of Mifflin, Juniata, Perry, Union and Snyder
.  Philadelphia, 1886.




At the October term of court, 1834, a petition was presented to the County Court of Mifflin County, asking for a division of Wayne township. The court appointed David Hough, Thomas McClure and William P. Elliott as commissioners to view the township and report as to the propriety of division. These commissioners presented a report January 8, 1835, in the favor of division, and suggested to the court the following course as a division line:

"Beginning at the Strode Mountain; thence north 36 degrees west, crossing the Juniata River to the mouth of Shank's Run; thence through Joseph Langton's lane to Jack's Mountain, and our opinions are that said Division is the best that can be made satisfactory to a large majority of the inhabitants of said township as any that can be made."

This report and opinion was confirmed at the April session of court the same year, and the new township was declared erected, and named Oliver, in honor of Judge John Oliver, long a judge of the court.

The following list is taken from the assessment of 1836, and contains the names, number of acres and occupations, except farmers, of the townships of what are now Oliver and Bratton, including also the borough of McVeytown:

Geo. Allen, 100; John Allen, 90; Wm. Armstrong weaver; Michael Aulty, Jr., 200; Wm. Anderson, 115; Widow Anderson, 50; Brooks, Thomas & Co. (furnace), 786; Joseph Bell, 170; James Bratton, 90; Charles Bratton, 142; Elijah Bratton, 200; Andrew Bratton 298, saw-mill; Patrick Brown, blacksmith; James Cooper, store; Jacob Carver, 200; George H. Calbreath, 450, saw-mill, house and lot; Calbreath, Miles & Haman, house and lot; Hanna Calbreath, 400; George W. Coulter, blacksmith; Widow Mary Coulter, 50; Elizabeth E. Crooks, 193; James and Jane Coulter, 73; David Criswell, 140; Abraham and Adam Caufman 175, saw-mill (formerly G. Mitchell); J. & M. Criswell, 42; James Criswell, 300, saw-mill; Isaac Caufman, 21; Christian Caufman, 270; Polly Caman, 100; Christian McG. Caufman, 140; Joseph Callan, 35; Martin Carney, 100; Andrew Caldwell's heirs, 183; Martin Dickson, 140; Henry Dunmire, 192; George Dull, house, lot, store-house; William Davis, cabinet-maker; Edward Dougherty, inn-keeper 104; Elijah Davis, store-keeper; Caspar Dull, 220 (transferred to Goff, Dull & Charwell), grist-mill, clover-mill and saw-mill; Revel Elton, blacksmith; William Erwin, 494; Robert Forgey, 150; Thomas Fitts, 104; Samuel Fickes, cooper; Peter Fike, 50; Peter Fry, weaver; Andrew Flanigan, 50; John Faust, weaver; John Foster, 185; Thomas Glassford, 100; Mathias Greenawalt, shoemaker; Jack Goadling, one-half tannery; Henry Hall (Lyon farm) 395; David M. Hulings, Esq., 534, saw-mill; John Hatzler, 125; John and David Hatzler, 40; John Hesser, 14; George Hoffman, 400; Robert Hope, 120; John Haman, store-keeper, store-house and lot; Hardy, Millan & Hartzler, store-keepers; Elias W. Hale, 375 (the Catharine Powel tract); John Horning, 369; David Hatzler, 240; Jacob Hatzler's heirs, 180; Dr. David Hatzler, 116 on ridge; Samuel Holliday, 374, grist-mill, saw-mill, distillery; John B. Irvine, 300; John L. Ickes, store-keeper and inn-keeper; Joseph R. Hanawalt, 200; Joseph Jacobs, 213, house and lot and tan-yard; Robert U. Jacobs, 42; Hugh


Johnson, tailor; James Johnson, 150; David Jenkins, 80; Joseph Kinsele, 892; Joshua King, 22, fulling mill, carding-machine; Kinsel & Myers, 106; Christian King, 48; Henry Leaton, 327; George Leopold, blacksmith, 65; James Langton, 100; David Luth, heirs of four lots; Joseph I. Langton, 250; Lurk & Junkins, 45; James Leaton, 200; John Magill, 178; James Mitchell, 62; William A. Moore, 64; Archibald Moore's heirs, 85; Samuel Myers, 480; Alexander McKee, 265, Robert McMonigle, 175; David McKee, 202; Thomas McCord, 150; William Marks, 225; James McDonald, 205; Richard Miles, storekeeper, house, lot and store; James McVey, 200, town lots; Christian Maist, 170; Henry Mullen, carpenter; John W. McCoy, house and lot; John McVey, Jr., heirs, four lots and house; Eliel McVey, 130; Hugh McKee, 137, saw-mill; William McVey, 860; John McVey, blacksmith, 7; Jacob Masdon, 165; John Miller, Jr., 109; Nicholas Miller, 286; Christian Miller, weaver; Nancy Miller, 30; David Miller, 100; George Mitchell, 210; Jacob Miller, 120; Michael Norton, house and lot, wagon-maker; John Oliver (judge), 350; Owen Owens, 113; Alexander McKinstry, 190; George Pennypacker, 50; Catharine Powell, house and lot; Solomon Peck, carpenter, 70; Joseph Price, grist-mill, saw-mill and chopping-mill, 150; James Rickert, wheelwright; Robert Rankin, 100; Robert Robeson, 200; Peter Rhodes, 200; Joseph Rhodes, 100; John Robinson, 200; John Reil, 36; Dr. Abraham Rothrock; William Rook, shoemaker; James Robison, 250; John Reil, blacksmith, 40; Benjamin Ross, 50; Jacob Richwine, shoemaker; Bastian Rhodes, 200; Samuel and William Ridge, 100; John Robb, Esq.; Martin Steley, tailor; Daniel Shreiner, wagon-maker; William Smith, tailor; John Stackpole, tailor; Thomas Smith, Esq., heirs, 500; Alexander Stewart's heirs, 116; John Shade, 90; William and John Sharah, coopers; John Seaman, tailor; Dr. L. G. Snowden; Samuel Swigert, tailor; Peter Sager, 146; Frederick Satzler, 15; Abraham Stutzman, 160; Christopher Stoner, miller; J. Swigert, 250; R. G. Stewart, 100; G. Trimels' heirs, 506; Troxel & Myers, 2 lots, house and tannery; W. Todd, 136; Henry Taylor, 120; Elmer Vance, 200; Benjamin Walters, 337; William Wakefield, 190; Nathaniel Wilson, house and lot, cabinet-maker; William and Randolph Wooden, blacksmiths; John Walters, store and house; Augustin Wakefield, 390, saw-mill; George Wakefield, 200; Lewis Whistler, 30; Michael Yutzey, 231; Daniel Yoder, 160; Christian and Joseph Yoder, 161.

The township, as it now exits, is all on the north side of the Juniata River, and is bounded on the northwest by Menno and Union townships, on the northeast by Granville and on the southwest by Wayne township. The Juniata River divides it from Bratton township, which was part of its territory until 1851, when it was erected. Its territory included within its limits the first grist-mill in the present Mifflin County, that of Samuel Holliday, at McVeytown, of which a fuller account be found in the sketch of that borough. Except the settlement of Samuel Holliday, probably the location of the farm now owned by William A. Moore was the first.

On the 2d of June 1762, Robert Samuels warranted two hundred acres of land, and in 1768 William Samuels also owned fifty acres. Robert Samuels died in 1775, and left the property, by will to his sons, - William, James, and Samuel, - who sold it to Joseph Westbrook, March 8, 1776, who conveyed it to Daniel Depue, February 29, 1788.

On the 8th of June, 1790, Archibald Moore, son of William Moore, who lived adjoining the farm, purchased of Daniel Depue one hundred and twenty acres of this tract and one hundred acres adjoining land which was warranted to Levi Westbrook, January 8, 1788, and conveyed to Joseph Westbrook the same day. Westbrook married an Elizabeth McKinstry and emigrated to South Carolina. Archibald Moore lived upon the farm and died there in 1819. Of his children are William A. Moore, of McVeytown; a daughter married Richard Miles, for many years a merchant in McVeytown. James McCoy, of McVeytown, married a daughter.

William Moore settled in what is now Oliver township before 1770. He joined the Continental army in the time of the Revolution, and died in the service, His widow, Isabella, was then living on a farm of one hundred acres, where she resided until her death, about 1822. They had three sons - Archibald, John and Andrew - and two daughters, - Mary and Jane. Archibald purchased a farm adjoining and settled upon it, and died there in 1819. Mary married Nathaniel Stanley (who owned the Yoder farm in Bratton township), and with her brother John emigrated to Trumbull County, Ohio; Andrew died young; Jane married Henry Wilson and settled upon the home-farm, which is now owned by their sons, Emory and Ambrose.


Jacobus Gonzales, a Spaniard, about 1776 purchased two hundred and thirty acres of land of Marshall Stanley. The tract was warranted to Adam Coon, December 15, 1766, and sold by him to Marshall Stanley in 1774. Stanley lived on the other side of the river, in what is now Bratton. Gonzales died in 1787, and left the property to his family, consisting of his wife, Sarah, and sons, Daniel, Jacobus, James and daughter, Sarah, wife of Jonathan Howit. On the 6th of April, 1795, the executors sold the farm to John Vance, who settled upon it. Nancy Macklin, daughter of James Macklin, married one of these sons, and after the sale the family moved to Ohio. John Vance purchased an adjoining tract of Frederick McKittrich. On this farm he lived and died. Judge James Criswell married his daughter Anna, John Horning married Elizabeth, Thomas Mitchell married Margaret and Ellen remained single. The farm is now owned by Lasher Bratton's heirs.

John Oliver, a native of Ireland, was born in 1752, and emigrated to this country when a young man. In 1780 he was a school-teacher in Wayne township (now Oliver). He married in 1782, Margaret, a daughter of James Lyon, who lived at the place now known as Anderson Station, Granville township. He was appointed associate justice of the courts of Mifflin County, and in January, 1794, first occupied the bench, and continued there until November, 1837. He died at the homestead February 9, 1841, aged eighty-nine years, and his wife followed him June 8, 1847, aged eighty-six years. Soon after his marriage, in 1783, he purchased two hundred and fifty acres of land, and on April 10, 1795, purchased one hundred acres adjoining John Brown's land. This last was part of a tract of three hundred and one acres which was warranted March 31, 1769. He lived upon the farm all his days, and it came into the possession of his son, John Oliver, and passed to his son, John S. Oliver, who resided there until a few years since, when it was sold to - Bishop, who now owns it. John and Margaret Oliver had twelve children,- James, Rachel, Elizabeth, Nancy, Margaret, Jane, Mary, John, Margery, George W., Sidney I. and Andrew W. James lived the most of his life in Shirleysburg, and died on the homestead December 4, 1851, aged seventy years. Rachel, Elizabeth and Nancy married, respectively, three brothers, John, Joseph and Samuel Campbell, and all settled in Union township. Margaret became the wife of the Rev. Joshua Laughran; settled in Washington County, Pa., where she died October 30, 1853, aged sixty-four years. Jane married John Campbell, a cousin of the three brothers of the same name. Mary lived at the old home, and died unmarried February 24, 1876, aged eighty-four years. John married Esther E. Strode, a daughter of William Strode, of Strode's Mills; settled on the homestead and died there October 16, 1840, aged forty-five years. Margaret died at McVeytown February 18, 1882, aged eighty-four years. George W. settled on a part of the homestead tract, and died there September 9, 1849, aged forty-nine years. Sidney I. married George Lyon, and is now living at McVeytown. Andrew W. emigrated to Minnesota, and died in Minneapolis April 1, 1875, aged eighty-two years.

Robert Forgy emigrated to this country about 1772. He was a weaver by trade, and came to what is now Bratton township, to the house of John Beatty, who was also a weaver, and carried on the business. He married Elizabeth, the daughter of his employer, and purchased one hundred and sixty-eight acres in what is now Oliver township and settled there, and where he died. He had six sons, - William, who died on the homestead; John, who settled in Ohio, and James, who settled on the homestead and died there, leaving the farm to his son Robert, who now owns it. Robert, Sr., purchased the old Wilkie farm, and now resides upon it. David and Adam died young. Of the daughters, Mary married a John Jacobs and emigrated West. Jane became the wife of David Coulter, and settled on the Coulter farm, now owned by the heirs of Henry Garver.

Richard Coulter in 1783 was in possession of two hundred acres. He died before 1793, and his property fell to his two sons, Joseph and David. Joseph lived on a farm near McVeytown, where his son Joseph run a tannery. David married Mary, the daughter of Robert


Forgy, and settled on the homestead. His sons were, Joseph, David, James and Benjamin. The farm is now owned by Reuben T. Bratton and Albert Horning.

A part of the land (one hundred and ninety acres) owned by David Coulter at his death was sold by his heirs, April 15, 1830, to James Crisswell. It was patented in 1789 to James Sterrett as "Day Spring," and was sold to David Coulter March 7, 1803.

John Allen located at first fifty acres of land, which he owned in 1782. On September 4, 1792, he warranted two hundred acres and in 1793 he owned three hundred acres. A part of this was in Long Hollow, Wayne township, which in 1799, he sold to James Stackpole. The farm on which he resided is now owned by - Musser. John Allen had five sons, - William, James, Robert, George and Christian. William and Robert emigrated to the West; James moved to Lancaster; George settled on the homestead, where he remained until 1851, when he sold the farm and moved to Indiana, where he died. Christian settled in Centre County, where he still resides. He also had several daughters, who married and moved to other places.

Alexander Stewart, in 1768, was in possession of one hundred acres of land and James Stewart of four hundred acres. In 1783 Alexander and Archibald Stewart each were assessed on two hundred acres and James on one hundred and seventy. On the 28th of February, 1785, Alexander warranted two hundred acres of land and on the 30th of January, 1787, Archibald warranted three hundred acres. Alexander Stuart (probably the one who warranted two hundred acres in 1785) died in 1825, leaving five hundred acres. His oldest son was John; his other children were Sarah, Susanna, Rebecca, Joseph, William and James; the latter is still living, below McVeytown. The homestead farm is now owned by Manuel Bieler.

John Rankin, in 1783 owned one hundred and eighty-five acres where Samuel Geerhart now lives, two miles above McVeytown, on the road to Long Hollow. He had a son Robert, who lived and died on the property, and two daughters, Mary and Polly.

Matthew Wakefield, in 1768, was assessed on one hundred acres of land then in Derry township (now Oliver). In 1793, the first year after Wayne was erected, he owned two hundred and twenty-two acres, John Wakefield, his son, one hundred acres, and in 1790 John was in possession of two hundred and twenty-six acres and a saw-mill. He died in 1793 and left two sons, William and George, and a daughter, Sarah, who married John McVey, the founder of McVeytown, to whom the property came. William settled on part of the farm and died in 1825. The property is now owned by John Horning. His children were Mary Strode, Hester Graham, Rachel Brown and Matthew and William.

George Wakefield settled on the homestead and died in 1827. His sons were John, Augustine, Rebecca, Eli and George. Augustine settled on the home farm where his son, George C. Wakefield, and his daughter, Mrs. Harriet Stine, now reside. Eli settled in Shirley on a farm given him by his father. George settled on a farm in Bratton township which his father bought of George Bratton. It is now owned by M. B. and George M. Wakefield, sons of George.

William Robison, before 1780, owned two hundred acres of land, and in 1793 he was in possession of four hundred acres. The farm was adjoining the Huston farm (later Michael Horning's). He died before 1800 and left the farm to his three sons, - John, Robert and William. John settled on the homestead and died there. The farm is now owned by the Dull estate.

Robert Elliot lived in Ferguson Valley, on thirty acres, before 1780, and John Elliot was in possession of four hundred and seventy-five acres. Robert still lives there in 1793 on one hundred and fifty acres. The farm long since passed to others, and is now owned by the Swigerts and Kinsel.

Benjamin Walters, about 1790, came to this section of country and purchased four hundred and fifty acres of land, embracing the hills and valley on which is the ore-bank. He built upon the hill and set out an orchard, still known as the Walters orchard. He married Catharine, a daughter of Caspar Dull, and moved to


the valley and built the house now owned and occupied by Peter Myers. In 1818 he bought a lot in McVeytown, on the river-bank below the hotel, and built there a grain and warehouse. His son John succeeded him in the business, erecting a stone house adjoining and above his father's. A daughter married John McVey, Jr.; they lived in the Couch house on the Diamond. Mrs. Couch is a daughter. Another daughter married Jacob Goodling, a tanner, who carried on business in McVeytown for many years. Of other sons were Caspar, Benjamin, Lewis and Harvey. Benjamin, the father, died in McVeytown, at the house of his daughter, Mrs. John McVey.

On the 25th of December, 1827, Benjamin Walters leased to Isaac Fisher the right to dig iron-ore and to cart it away; also to build a furnace on the property. The price as one cent quit-rent, to be paid the 1st of April, if demanded, and one hundred dollars per year for every year ore was mined. Thirty acres of the tract was mentioned as containing a bank of iron-ore.

The Brookland Furnace was built in 1835, on a tract of land adjoining and below the Walters tract. A small amount or ore was taken from the farm mentioned above, but it was not thought of sufficient account to make further effort, and during the time the furnace was operated the ore was mostly obtained from other sources. Some years after it was abandoned, General John Ross, of McVeytown, opened a drift, since which time it has been worked to considerable extent by different parties, and the drifts extend into the hills four or five hundred feet. The property now belongs to Mrs. Dr. O'Connor, of Harrisburg.

George Mitchell, a son of the George Mitchell who lived in what is now Bratton township, purchased a farm about two miles above McVeytown. His sons were George, Thomas, William and James, and a daughter, Mary, who married Irwin Coulter. George lived in various places in the township. Rev. Thompson Mitchell is a son. Thomas settled on part of his father's farm. His son George was a physician and died in the Big Valley. A sketch of him will be found in the Medical chapter. James settled on the home farm and died unmarried. Reuben E. Bratton now owns the property.

James Stackpole, a son of James Stackpole, of Carlisle, warranted two hundred acres of land one mile east of Waynesburg, July 31, 1786, on which he settled. He married Dorcas Elizabeth, the daughter of Thomas Holt, who resided on the tract afterwards known as Hope Furnace. At this place he built a dwelling-house, which, in 1792, he opened as a tavern. He later purchased a tract of land in Long Hollow, over against the hills. He died early in the century, and Dorcas, his wife, lived many years after and is well remembered by many. They had three sons and two daughters, - James, Thomas, John, Margaret and Mary.

James (2) had three sons, - William, James and Henry H.
William died in Lewistown.
James died in Nashville, Tenn. His sons, G. F. and J. S. Stackpole, are the editors of the Gazette in Lewistown.
Henry H. resides in Harrisburg and has charge of the public buildings.
Thomas, son of James (2), moved to Schuylkill County.
John, also son of James (2), died at McVeytown.
Mrs. E. Conrad is a daughter.
Margaret became the wife of John M. Barton.

John Culbertson, in 1783, was in possession of two hundred acres of land, and in 1790 was assessed on that amount of land and a fulling-mill, in 1793 on a grist and saw-mill. In 1799 he erected on the place the most substantial and best-finished stone house in the county at the time, which still stands. He was elected a justice of the peace and served for many years. He died before 1813. Mary Culbertson, his widow, as administratrix, February of that year, advertised for rent the "Fulling-Mill Place," having two hundred acres, fulling-mill and tan-mill; also, half the tract called "New Mills," including the grist and saw-mills. The Fulling-Mill Place is now owned by Elliott Rhodes. The last was the homestead and is one mile


west of McVeytown, John Culbertson left no children, and Mrs. Culbertson died soon after his death, and the property was left to his sisters, - Mrs. Patrick Leister and Mrs. Foster. In 1818 the home farm was sold to William Armstrong and David Criswell. It has passed through many hands and is now owned by Mrs. David Stine, of McVeytown.

Robert Crawford, in 1783, lived on a farm on one hundred and fifty acres, now owned by the Brattons and Forgys. His son Moses lived on the property for several years and sold to others.

Thomas Collins was a shoemaker, and, in 1783, lived on a farm of sixty acres, at the foot of the mountain, back of the Hanawalt property. In 1793 he owned one hundred acres. His son John married Elizabeth Jenkins, daughter of David Jenkins, grandfather of David Jenkins, now living on the Juniata River.

On the 2d of September, 1785, Hector Galbraith warranted three hundred acres of land, a part of which was sold to his son George, who in 1790, was assessed on four hundred acres of land and a saw-mill. September 4, 1792, George warranted two hundred acres of land and lived upon this farm until 1805, when he moved to McVeytown and built a tavern-stand on the corner opposite Ross' Hotel, now a vacant lot. A further account of George Galbraith will be found in McVeytown. A portion of land taken up by him and his father passed to Joseph Kinsell, whose son Michael now owns part. George Galbraith, a son by the second wife, lived and died on the homestead now owned by his daughter, Mrs. Retta Clarke. The original furnace tract on which Brookland Furnace was erected was from the Hector Galbraith tract. It stood on the site of Peter Myer's grist-mill, which was built in 1872.

James Huston lived in Potter township, but had purchased a tract of two hundred acres of land before 1783, and in 1790 the estate contained three hundred and fifty acres. He had several sons - William, James, John, Joseph, Samuel and several daughters. William Huston, one of the sons of James Huston, Sr., warranted one hundred acres February 28, 1787, and four hundred acres February 8, 1794. The tract of James Huston was sold in 1790 by the heirs to James Huston, one of the sons. A tract of one hundred and forty-eight acres was patented by him April 6, 1804, which, on the 25th of the same month, was conveyed to Michael Horning, who sold it to his son John, March 14, 1821. At the time of Michael Horning's purchase it was adjoining lands of John Oliver, John Robert and William Robinson.

Henry Dunmire came to Greenwood township, Mifflin County (now Juniata), and on the 10th of May, 1802, purchased of Henry Drinker ninety-nine acres of land on the heads of Cocolamus Creek, where he lived a few years, and moved to Wayne township (now Oliver), and purchased one hundred and sixty-three acres of William and John Taylor, adjoining lands of John Swigert, George Galbraith and William Lewis. On this place he lived until his death. He had four sons, - Gabriel, who lived for some years in Ferguson Valley, but since 1870 on the homestead farm; Daniel, Michael, who removed to Clarion County; and John, who settled in Ferguson Valley.

A part of the George Galbraith farm (one hundred and thirty-two acres) was purchased August 13, 1820, by Joseph Kinsell, who, September 25, 1833, purchased two hundred and twelve acres adjoining the Galbraith land, and April 1, 1834, purchased of Henry Hanawalt, administrator of George Hanawalt, two hundred and thirty acres additional. This land is now in part owned by Michael Kinsell, his son. Jacob, another son, settled on a part for several years and moved West.

Henry Hanawalt warranted, October 31, 1785, three hundred acres of land, and November 21, 1792, one hundred acres. This land was in what is now Oliver township, adjoining the George Galbraith tract. Henry Hanawalt died in 1794 and left two sons, George and John, who, in April 1802, purchased a tract of land in what is now Wayne township of the heirs of James Ross. John moved to that place and George remained on the home farm. The property was divided in April, 1821, and each remained where they were living. John


died in 1829 and George in 1832. The latter left five hundred and fifty acres of land and a widow, Catharine, and children, - Margaret (Mrs. Hugh McKee), Ann (Mrs. George Leapold), Susanna, Joseph and James.

John Swigert, on May 29, 1792, bought one hundred and fifty acres of land of William Harper, adjoining land of Widow Taylor and James Bratton. It was described as being in the upper end of John Brown's Narrows along, Jack's Mountain. He purchased lands in what is now Oliver township also, and in 1836 a John Swigert was assessed on two hundred and fifty acres. Peter and Christian Swigert also were living in Ferguson Valley, Peter sold his land to John Allen, brother of George, who died there. John had several sons, of whom two now live on and near the homestead. Christian's sons all live in the valley.

BROOKLAND FURNACE. - The land on which the furnace was erected was part of a tract which was warranted February 2, 1785, to Hector Galbraith and sold by him to George Galbraith, and sold by him to George Galbraith, who, January 7, 1822, sold it to William Wakefield. The firm of Charles Brooks & Co. was formed for the purpose of erecting a furnace and manufacturing iron, and was composed of Charles and Clement Brooks, of Chester County, and Jesse Thomas, of Mifflin County. Charles Brooks (for the firm) purchased one hundred and fifteen acres of the tract mentioned above and twenty-five acres adjoining on the 14th of April, 1835. Later they purchased thirty-one acres of Samuel Holliday and the Greenwood ore-banks, in Union township, and several ore-rights within a few miles of the furnace. The furnace was built on the one hundred and fifteen acres. Ore was brought by six-horse teams from the Big Valley. William Patton became the manager. The iron manufactured was mostly sent to Harper's Ferry, where it was used in the manufacture of gun-barrels and wire.

The furnace property passed to Michael Crisswell & Co. in 1840, who, in 1843, built the Ellen Forge, below the site of the old Holliday Mill. They operated the furnace and forge about a year and leased it to R. Allen & Co., who discontinued in winter of 1848-49 and sold the material and tools February 14, 1849. The property was sold, April 5, 1849, to Horatio N. Burroughs, of Philadelphia, who, in 1854, leased to Huntingdon, Robinson & Co., of New York. William Green, from Cumberland County, became manager. In 1856 this firm built an addition to the forge for a rolling-mill and put in a set of muck-rolls, a hammer, a pair of squeezers and three puddling furnaces. With this equipment they made muck-bars and continued furnace, forge and rolling-mill until 1861, when they abandoned it, as the expense of hauling ore was too great; and although good ore was within almost a stone's throw of the furnace, it was not then known. The next year the forge was refitted by Mitchell & Clouser, who operated it for a year, working up the slag, since which the furnace and forge have been abandoned.

Mr. Burroughs sold the furnace property, April 1, 1856, to the Juniata Iron Company, who, August 2, 1859, were sold out by the sheriff; and Mr. Burroughs became the purchaser, and sold the property in small parcels from time to time. The site of the furnace stack was purchased by Peter Myers October 9, 1874, who erected a grist-mill, which is still in operation.

It is a singular fact that the ore used at this furnace was brought from the Big Valley at considerable expense, when later researches have revealed good ore on the original furnace tract, which has largely been used by furnaces since that time.

BRADLEY & DULL'S SAND-WORKS are located on the creek to the northwest of McVeytown. The first sand taken from the hill for use in the manufacture of glass was in 1868, when J. R. Wirt, Edmund David and General John Ross mined a car-load and shipped it to Pittsburgh. In 1870, Bradley & Dull, the present proprietors, began operations and have increased their capacity from time to time as the demand increased, until in 1884 there was shipped form the works over eighteen thousand tons of clean-washed sand. They began drifting in 1870, and at present have six drifts, with numerous side-cuts. These drifts are three above and three below and parallel about eight hundred feet into the hill. The sand from the upper drifts is dumped into the lower drifts, loaded on


cars, drawn by mules to the station, where they are drawn up an incline to the two crushers, which each consist of two very heavy revolving wheels, under which the sand passes. It is then carried to a revolving iron sieve. As the sand falls into a trough it is carried by spiral conveyers through water to the top of the building, when it is thoroughly clean. After draining, it is placed upon dryers, which are pipes heated by steam, where it is thoroughly dried and ready for shipment and as white as flour. In the early days of these operations the sand was washed in a circular tub, with a stir-paddle worked by steam. In 1871 washing in troughs was begun. In 1882 the water-power was erected at the canal and the power transmitted by wire one thousand feet from the canal to the works.

DULL & WILSON'S SAND-WORKS. - A little southwest of McVeytown, on land of D. M. Dull, John McGuire leased, in 1876, a small tract and opened a sand-bank, which he continued in small way a year or two and released to - Miller, of Huntingdon. In 1880 Dull & Wilson, the present proprietors, took possession and began mining on a larger scale. The drifts are in a westerly course and are between five hundred and six hundred feet in length. About six thousand tons were shipped in 1884.

The history of the Brethren Church of Oliver township will be found embraced in an article in Derry township on the society in Mifflin County.

LOCKPORT. - The place now known as Lockport or Three Locks lies at the mouth of Brightsfield or Strode's Run. A short distance above, on the Juniata River, where Strunk's mills now stands there had been a settlement for many years, at the place under the name of Willis' Mill. In 1829-30 three locks were built along the canal at this place and a lock-house. Owen Owens was for several years in charge and owned a lot there. About 1830 a Methodist Society was formed in the neighborhood by the Rev. Jas. Stevens, and meetings were held in Mr. Owens' house for a time. In 1832 the society purchased the lot of Mr. Owens and erected the present stone church. The society was under the charge of Baltimore Conference for many years and was supplied by circuit preachers, among whom were Henry Taring and Peter McAuly. It now belongs to the Central Pennsylvania Conference, and this church and the Granville Church are supplied every other Sunday, one in the morning the other in the evening. In 1833 Owen Owens erected at the Three Locks a store, which he kept until May 9, 1835, when S. F. & G. A. Green purchased and run; they also built on the canal a warehouse for storing grain and merchandise. This firm dissolved in November of that year and business was discontinued.

A Baptist Society was organized in 1840 and worshipped part of the time in the Methodist Church and part in the store then kept by John Ickes. In 1842 they purchased a lot of Robert Hope and erected a church edifice, which is still used. Of the pastors who have served are the Revs. David Williams, A. B. Stills, W. B. Purdy, J. L. Holmes, S. K. Boyer, George W. Coulter, Black and D. W. Hunter, who closed his pastorate in 1883. The church has a membership of forty and a flourishing Sunday-school. Samuel Strong keeps a store at Lockport at present.

STRODE'S MILLS is located above Lockport. An account of the occupancy of the land by the Strodes will be found in Granville township. The store and post-office is in Oliver. In 1836 John Ickes, who married a sister of Joseph Strode, kept a store at that place, and in 1840 moved to Lockport. Joseph Strode now keeps the store and post-office.

SCHOOLS. - The first school-house of which anything definite is known was at Strode's Mills, where Robert Cooper taught between 1808 and 1810. He had taught in Lewistown, and came to this place and died here. Martin Brown taught after him. The school-house was built of logs and close against Chestnut Ridge.

As early as 1818 a school-house was built on the "Fulling Mill Place" of John Culbertson. A log school-house was on the Stewart farm (now Manuel Bieler's) before 1812. William A. Moore attended school at the house in that year. On the 25th of January, 1820, Michael


Horning sold to School Trustees John N. Graham, John Horning, John Robison, William Marsden, John Oliver, William and George Wakefield and James Crisswell a lot of land from his farm, "for the purpose of erecting a school-house thereon, which house is to be used as a school-house, with liberty for people to meet and sign therein, and also liberty for preachers of any and every denomination freely to preach therein, and for no other purpose." A house was erected and used many years.

This township was formed in January, 1835, and in May of that year Richard Miles and John Haman, who were the school directors, advertised for proposals for teachers until the 20th of May, when they would meet at the house of Mrs. Lusk, in McVeytown, to contract with teachers. The school districts, as taken from Wayne township, were No. 2 at Swigert's, No. 4 at McVeytown, No. 5 at Mitchell's, No. 9 at McKinstry's and No. 10 at McKee's.

McVeytown borough became separated from Oliver township in its schools in 1842. The township at present contains nine schools and two hundred and eighty-three pupils attending.

The justices of the peace who have served the township since 1845 are as follows:

1845. Charles Bratton. 1872. John Ream.
William Irwin. 1873. Joseph Strode.
1846. Henry Leattor. 1874. David Decker.
1850. Samuel B. Lower. 1875. Adam Lefford.
1851. William Irwin. 1876. Owen Wagner.
1856. George Leopold. H. McCormick.
1857. John McKee. 1877. Mason White.
1859. John Dummire. 1879. Daniel Decker.
1860. Samuel Horning. 1880. Robt. McCormick.
1861. Thomas Mayes. Peter Ream.
1862. Moses Gillespie. 1881. Uriah Manbeck.
1866. Moses Gillespie. 1882. Austin Gro.
1867. Samuel Bratton. 1883. Austin Gro.
1868. Moses Gillespie. J. E. Stine.
1869. James Rhodes. 1884. Osman Whitworth.
1870. Robert Forgy. Henry Cornelius.
1871. Moses Gillespie. 1885. Joseph Hardeshell.

Return to Ellis' Mifflin County History Table of Contents

Mifflin County PAGenWeb


Copyright 2006-2008, Individual file contributors.  All rights reserved.

This file has been contributed for use on Mifflin County PAGenWeb by Jana Dress; transcribed by Patty Frank.