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Green Park | Loysville 

After the Albany Treaty of 1754, which included the lands which now comprise Perry County, we find the following upon the records of Cumberland County, in reference to new townships:  "And we do further erect the settlements called Sherman's Valley and Bofolo's Creek into a separate township and nominate the same the township of Tyrone, and we appoint John Scott Linton to act as constable therein for the remaining part of the current year."

No definite boundaries were fixed, but it included all of that part of Perry County as now constituted lying west of the Juniata River.  The same territory is now divided into fifteen townships and six boroughs.  It was often referred to in its pioneer days as "the eternal state of Tyrone."  When Perry County was erected it had already been divided by the creation of Toboyne, Rye, Juniata and Saville.  As now constituted Tyrone Township is bounded on the north by Saville, on the east by Spring, on the south by Cumberland County and on the west by Southwest Madison Township.

As Tyrone Township comprised such an extensive domain at the time of its creation and long afterwards, of the places named and the descendants some are likely to be found in other townships, since created from parts of Tyrone.

There is an assessment list in existence which shows the names of property holders in 1767, as follows:

(1767 Assessment)

As early as 1779 Obadiah Garwood was assessed with a sawmill, Widow Robinson with a gristmill, and Francis West with a grist and sawmill.  West resided on the line between Tyrone and Rye.  By 1782 the assessment on mills and distilleries was as follows:

Hugh Brown, John Black, Robert Irwin, Sr. (2), Robert Irwin, Jr. (2), George Hamilton, William Neilson and Robert Scott, stills; James Fisher, malt kiln; Alexander Roddy, sawmill; Robert Garwood and Francis West, gristmills; John Sanderson, two stills and a gristmill.

After a period of thirty-two years had elapsed the assessment roll of industries included the following in the year 1814, six years before Perry County became a county:

James Diven, Samuel Nickey, Robert Thompson, tanyards; Francis Gibson, two distilleries; John Linn, Francis Portzline, Josiah Roddy, Samuel Smiley, Henry Shoemaker, Jacob Stambaugh, Frederick Shull, Englehart Wormley, Adam Webley, stills; John Foos, sawmill & still; Christian Heckendorn, sawmill & still; Nicholas Ickes, sawmill & 2 stills; Zalmon and Azariah Tousey, saw & gristmill, & still; John Waggoner, saw & gristmill & still; George Elliot, Widow Gibson's heirs, Zachariah Rice, gristmills; Conrad Halleman, Nicholas Loy, Samuel McCord, Francis Patterson, John Shafer, Jacob Shatto, Frederick Smiley, George Waggoner, sawmills; Samuel & Andrew Linn, grist & sawmill; Peter Mores, tilt hammer; William Power, store; Thomas Purdy, stores; Adam Seller, Martin Swartz & Shuman & Utter, saw and gristmills; George Stroop, sawmill.

Alexander Roddy, named above, who later built the mill known to this day as Waggoner's mill, lived at several places before taking up the mill tract, which is covered rather extensively in the chapter devoted to "Old Landmarks, Mills and Industries."

The land office opened in 1755 for the settlement of lands in the new purchase, and when James Wilson, Andrew Simeson and others came in at that time their warrants name Alexander Roddy as "adjoining," which is evidence that although he had been ordered out before the lands were available, that he had come back.  These locations were west of Montour's Run.  He lived there several years before taking up the Waggoner mill tract, May 13, 1763, on Roddy's Run.  He purchased other lands adjoining his on both sides of "the run," and in 1767 was assessed with 100 acres and a gristmill in Toboyne Township, and 300 acres an a sawmill in Tyrone Township, part of this 300 acres being the original tract warranted by him on Montour's Run.  His sons, Josiah and Alexander Roddy, warranted 175 acres in 1786, and in 1789 the Roddys took out a warrant for 312 acres adjoining the county home tract.  Robert and James Wilson, whose descendants yet live about Landisburg, took up four hundred acres in 1755, which they describe as located "where Thomas Wilson and Alexander Roddy have presumed to settle on Montour's Run, adjoining the dwelling plantation of Andrew Montour."  The Andrew Simeson place was later known as the John Albert and the John Creigh farms.

In the early chapters of this book, among the matters and disputes between the Indians and the provincial authorities, there will be found an account of the encroachment of the pioneers on lands which the Indians still claimed and which those in authority decided should be vacated by all settlers.  Under the authority of the province this was done, and Andrew Montour was then authorized to settle somewhere in that territory to see that the law would be observed.  He located in what is Tyrone Township, near a large stream which flows into Sherman's Creek and which to this day bears his name--Montour's Run.  He took out a warrant for 143 acres of land lying between where the town of Landisburg now stands and Sherman's Creek and Montour's Run, which was surveyed to William Mitchell, June 13, 1788, and passed to Abraham Landis soon thereafter.  This is what has been known for a century as the Rice mill property, the old mill still being in operation.  The history of this old landmark also appears in the chapter entitled "Old Landmarks, Mills and Industries."  As settlers came in and Indians vanished Montour found his occupation as a trader gone, and he then left.

In 1787 Abraham Landis warranted a tract of 116 acres, which he combined with the Montour tract, and in 1795 both tracts were patented to him.  Landis laid out Landisburg, but probably never lived in Tyrone Township or Landisburg, as all the deeds mentioned his home as in Lancaster County.  On March 10, 1813, Landis sold his property to George Stroop, who laid out an addition to the town, but died before 1828.  His heirs failed to comply with the terms of sale made by Landis and the property again reverted to Landis.  Matters were compromised with lot purchasers and the remaining farm lands were sold to Dr. Samuel Moore, General Henry Fetter and Zachariah Rice.  Peter Fahnestock, a son-in-law of Landis, who transacted the latter's business by power of attorney after Stroop's death, later (before 1830) built a scythe and edge tool factory and also had a tilt hammer at the old Francis Patterson mill.

William Patterson, the progenitor of the Patterson families in that section of the county, settled in 1753 on Laurel Run, and Francis Patterson had a sawmill there in 1814, and later an oil mill, and in 1825 Thomas Patterson was in possession of both and also a chopping mill. It was at this location where Fahnestock, as stated above, erected his scythe and edge tool factory, about 1838.  About 1840 Solomon Hengst conducted a foundry at that point for several years.  John Waggoner, of Kennedy's Valley, was once the owner and he was the man who changed the oil and chopping mill to a grist mill.  It was later owned by William A. and James F. Lightner.

The two John Dunbars--father and son--took up tracts as early as 1763 and 1768.  On one of these Dunbar tracts Rev. J. W. Heim built a stone gristmill about 1830, which his administrator in 1852 sold to Joseph Bixler.  It later passed to Anthony Firman and George Weaver in turn, and is known as Weaver's mill to this day, being now owned by the Tressler Orphans' home since January 1, 1919.

William McClure warranted 264 acres in 1763, which he sold to Martin Bernheisel prior to 1794.  He had six children by his first marriage, the first-born being Alexander, who settled near where the Centre Presbyterian Church is located.  He became the father of the celebrated editor, A. K. McClure.  To William McClure, by his second marriage, there were born ten children.  After the death of Martin Bernheisel the old McClure tract passed to his son Adam, who in 1810 sold the place to the poor directors of Cumberland County, the history of which appears in the chapter devoted to "Academies and Public Institutions."

Bell's Hill derives its name from James Bell, who in 1768 took up 223 acres on and near it.  James Galbreath in 1750 took up 400 acres.  Simon Girty (father of Simon Girty, the renegade), who trespassed an was evicted by the provincial authorities, later became a tenant upon this Galbreath tract, the owner living in Carlisle.  This property passed to Charles Stewart, whose heirs in 1800 sold it to George Waggoner, where he lived until his death in 1824.  In 1810 he built a sawmill upon Montour's Run, which was in use until 1884.  A bark and sumac factory was built in 1850 and operated until 1864.  

Obadiah Garwood, who in 1767 was assessed with 125 acres, and in 1779 with a sawmill, lived in Kennedy's Valley.  Robert Garwood in 1782 was assessed with a gristmill.  About 1785 John Wagner purchased the property, including the small stone mill.  In 1814 he had there a gristmill, sawmill and distillery.  He resided there until 1834, when he died.  He was the father of ten children, his son Benjamin buying the Roddy mill about 1839, from whence it derives its name.  Benjamin Roddy died, and his brother Moses purchased it.  John Waggoner, another son, bought the Paterson mill and ran it.  John Waggoner, the father, had also built a mill in 1805, at Bridgeport, later known as Snyder's mill, and now owned by B. P. Hooke.  To give an entire list of these early settlers would fill a book in itself, but among others were the following pioneers:  

James Blaine, in 1785, 300 acres;
John Carrothers, in 1766, 300 acres, later known as the Caldwell still house tracts;
John Simonton, in 1755, 400 acres
William Anderson, in 1786, 200 acres
James Smith, in 1768, 300 acres
Michael Kinsloe, in 1795, 200 acres and in 1800, 200 acres adjoining.
David Carson, in 1762, took up a tract which he later sold to Peter Sheibley, from whom the many Sheibley families in Perry County have descended.  Mr. Sheibley was the father of twenty children.

On Sherman's Creek, on the line of Spring and Tyrone Townships, Thomas Ross, an elder of Centre Presbyterian Church, located 200 acres in 1762, and Jonathan Ross, 150.  Mount Dempsey was once known as Scott's Knob.  Prior to 1775, it was owned by John and Christian Tussey, and changed hands several times until 1792, when it came into possession of Charles Dempsey, from whom it takes its name.  In 1813, Philip Fosselman built a stone tannery on a branch of Mountour's Run, and carried on the tanning business until 1832, when he sold to Jacob Shearer, who operated it until 1856, when the business was discontinued.  In 1849 Mr. Shearer went to California, from where he shipped great quantities of hides to be tanned at this small plant.

In Kennedy's Valley, several miles from McCabe's Run, Colonel William Graham, in 1842, erected a tannery on land formerly belonging to Abraham Wagner, and operated it until 1849, when he sold it to James L. and John L. Diven.  They operated it until 1867, when it again came into possession of Colonel Graham, who was in business there until 1872, when it was no longer run.  James Baxter took up two hundred and seven acres and erected a tannery before 1820, which he ran for several years, selling it to John Titzel in 1828.  He conducted it until about 1855, when it was abandoned.

About 1790 Peter Sheibley removed from Berks to Perry County territory, settling in Tyrone Township.  He received payment for his farm in Berks County in Continental money, which soon became worthless.  He had been a private in the Continental Army, and lived until December, 1824.  He was aged eighty-four years.  

Occasions where three brothers marry three sisters are rare indeed, yet one such instance is recorded in Perry County.  Jacob Briner, of Berks County (grandfather of George S. Briner, now of Carlisle), married Magdalena Hammer about 1806, and with his brother George came to what is now Perry County and located about two miles south of Loysville, where they began farming.  Some time later George Briner returned to Berks County and brought with him the second Miss Hammer.  After a lapse of another two years, Peter Briner, who had joined his brothers, returned to Berks County and brought along back as his wife the third of the Hammer sisters.

In a very early day there were four brothers, John, Henry, Jonathan and George Rhinesmith, who located in Tyrone Township, and from them have sprung the numerous Rhinesmith families of Perry County and elsewhere.

In 1826 John Bernheisel erected a clover mill, in which clover-seed and sumac were ground, upon his farm, located in Tyrone Township between Elliottsburg and Green Park.  Some time between 1830 an 1840 he added a sawmill.  In 1874, his son, Solomon Bernheisel, changed the mill to a gristmill, refitting it with steam in 1878,an as such it was in use until the latter part of the century.  Martin J. Bernheisel, of the next generation, operated the mill after the death of his father.

The first schoolhouse of which there is record in Tyrone Township was at the Lebanon Church, at Loysville, which was built around 1794.  Rev. D. H. Focht, in his historical work, says of it:

"A short time after the church was built a large schoolhouse was erected on the same lot of ground and near the church.  A partition divided the schoolhouse inside and a large chimney occupied the centre.  One end of the house was occupied by the teacher and his family and the other by the school.  For many years a sort of congregational school was kept there."

That old schoolhouse was in use until 1837, when the first public school built there took its place.  In 1853 the Loysville Academy was begun in the basement of this church, and later merged into the Tressler Orphans' Home.  Of the Landisburg schoolhouse we have spoken in the chapter devoted to that town.  There was a schoolhouse as early as 1815 in the vicinity of Rheem's foundry, at Green Park.  In 1842 a brick house was built.  There was a log house west of Sherman's Creek, near the Morrow farms, and one near Patterson's mill.  Near the Church of God there was a frame house long in use, and in 1851 one was built on the Waggoner farm, north of Landisburg.  There was one in Kennedy's Valley, on the Crull farm, and one on the old William Allen farm.  The one at Bridgeport was built of brick before Spring Township was organized.

LoysvilleBesides Landisburg Borough, which lies within its borders, Tyrone Township has two other towns which are not incorporated, Loysville and Green Park, the largest being Loysville.  It was early known as Red Rock.

Loysville is laid out on parts of two original tracts, the east part being on the McClure tract, warranted in 1763, and the west part of the John Sharp tract, warranted the same year.  Martin Bernheisel and Michael Loy later came into possession of them, and donated several acres for church and school purposes.  At this point the Lutheran and Reformed Church, a parsonage, and a parochial school stood.  On July 20, 1840, the directors of the poor of Perry County surveyed a block of eight lots, 60x150 in size, on the County Home tract, on the east side of the road leading to Heim's mill, and named it Andesville.  Martin Kepner, Robert Dunbar and Andrew Welch were early business men.  A hotel was opened by James Gracey.  In 1822 Michael Loy gave a half acre of ground for the Loysville cemetery.

A post office named Andesville was established about 1842, but a few years later the name was changed to Loysville, in honor of Michael Loy.  Early postmasters were Jacob Rickard, David Kochenderfer, George F. Orrel, David K. Minich, Samuel Shumaker, Isaac P. Miller, Davis S. Asper, Joseph Newcomer, John W. Heim.

Michael Loy, Jr., who died in 1846, provided in his will that his executors, George and William Loy, should lay out a row of lots from where the Lutheran parsonage stood, to the New Bloomfield road.  These lots were laid out about 1848.  John Ritter purchased a number of lots, and on two of them he built the present brick hotel, in 1852, now in possession of Wm. H. Power.  His son, Benjamin Ritter, occupied this hotel from 1852 to 1884, when it passed to the hands of the third generation, George E. Ritter, later sheriff, becoming the proprietor.

The history of the Lutheran and Reformed Churches appears in the chapter entitled the Earliest Churches.  The pastorate of Rev. John William Heim, of Lebanon Lutheran Church, covered the period from May 1815, until his death, December 27, 1849.  The church erected a monument at his grave and celebrated its centennial at the same time, in 1894, largely through the efforts of Rev. W. D. E. Scott, Samuel Ebert, and Jacob Wolf.  

Loysville Castle, No. 111, Knights of the Golden Eagle, was instituted here February 13, 1907.

The Women's Welfare Club was organized at Loysville in January, 1921, with the following officers:  Mrs. Wm. T. Morrow, president; Mrs. George Kell, vice-president; Miss Ida Kleckner, secretary, and Mrs. Robert Eaton, treasurer, who are the officers at this time (1921).  Shortly after organizing, the Welfare Club went in for improved streets through the town, and arranged with the State Highway Department to jointly make a crushed limestone highway through it.  The work is about completed.  Future plans are for the improvement of the town---which is not a borough---and aid in case of an epidemic. This organization has started well and has a fertile field, as a town of that nature does not have the organization of a borough to cover many matters needing attention.  

The history of the Loysville Academy, the Soldiers' Orphans' School and the Tressler Orphans Home, which developed from one to the other appears under "Academies and Institutions."  The group of buildings are visited by thousands annually.

In 1896, Dickinson, Gilbert & Keen opened a creamery here, which was a pioneer in its line.  It has operated continuously since.  The share of Hiram Keen was purchased from his heirs by B. Stiles Duncan, who, in conjunction with I. H. Dickinson and Amos Gilbert, now owns the plant, under the firm name of the Loysville Creamery Company.  H. P. Dyson is the secretary and treasurer.

There was no resident doctor in Loysville until 1842, when Dr. Isaac Lefevre located there.  In 1855 he removed to New Bloomfield.  ...Dr. A. E. Linn was his successor, and practiced here until he removed to Shermansdale, in 1857.  Dr. B. P. Hooke graduated from the University of Pennsylvania in 1855, and located at Loysville a year later.  He practiced there successfully until his death, which occurred March 10, 1903.  Dr. C. E. Delancey, who graduated from the University of the City of New York in 1878, after practicing a short time at Ickesburg, located here in 1883.  He removed from here to Newport, where he has a large practice.  Dr. George L. Zimmerman, born at Andersonburg, followed Dr. Delancey.  He later located at Bloserville, Cumberland County, and still later at Carlisle.  ...Dr. Alburtis T. Ritter, of Franklin County, who graduated from Baltimore Medical College in 1893, located at Loysville and practiced until his death, which occurred February 11, 1911.  Soon after the death of Dr. Ritter, Dr. William T. Morrow, a native of the vicinity, located there.  Dr. Morrow graduated from the Baltimore Medical College in 1908.  He is the only practicing physician at Loysville.

Green Park.  The west part of Green Park is on a fifty-three acre tract warranted originally to Ludwig Laird, in 1755, and surveyed to Henry Shoemaker in 1814.  The east part is on a tract of fifty acres warranted to James Moore, in 1766.  The first house was built by William Reed, about 1834.  About 1857 Martin Motzer and John Bernheisel built a store building and opened a store.  They were succeeded in business by Frank Mortimer, George Ernest, William B. Keck, W. W.  McClure, Samuel Stambaugh, George Bernheisel and William Hoobaugh.  Jacob Bernheisel built a grain cradle factory and a shingle mill where the Rheem foundry is located, in 1857, turning it into a foundry later.  In 1874 Rheem Bros. purchased it and conducted business there for many years.

The business places within the bounds of Tyrone Township are designated as follows by the mercantile appraiser, the date being the time of entering the business:

General stores:  A. N. Billman (1913); successor to W. W. Minich; B. F. Kell (1891), erected present building in 1905; J. G. Minich.

Groceries:  Ira Evans, E. E. Emlet & Sons.
H. A. Dunkelberger, confectionery; J. B. Lightner, Grain and coal; Casper C. Nickel, furniture; D. W. Raffensperger, fertilizers; J. A. Sausaman (1915), feed, established 1786 as the Rice mill; Wells Stewart, eggs; Tressler Orphans Home, feed; J. W. Wolfe, stoves and spouting.

Loysville Methodist Church:  A short distance west of Loysville a Methodist Episcopal church was erected in 1865 through the efforts of Rev. J. Riddle, but the field was never a very fruitful one.  The ministers of the New Bloomfield Circuit supplied it until 1883, when it was torn down and removed to Mansville, a village in Centre Township, and re-erected.

Sheaffer's Valley Church of God.   The Church of God in Sheaffer's Valley, was built about 1830, on lands of Michael Murray.  It was remodeled in 1885.  It is served by the pastor of the Landisburg charge, where a list of pastors appear.

Kennedy's Valley Church of God.  The Kennedy's Valley Church of God was built in 1886, the corner stone having been laid on July 7th.  Rev. W. J. Grissinger was then pastor.  Pastors appear under the Landisburg chapter.  

Tyrone Township surrounds Landisburg, where many of its citizens also worship.

The above information was extracted from the book, History of Perry County Pennsylvania; H. H. Hain; Harrisburg; 1922.  



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This page was last updated on:   03/14/2009

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