A Part of Genealogy Express

History & Genealogy


of the
Early Settlers and Settlement
of Ross County, Ohio

By Isaac J. Finley and Rufus Putnam
Printed for the Authors by Robert Clarke & Co.

Pg. 100

Township Officers.
     Washington Jennings, Andrew Hinton, and Samuel Harisinger, Justices of the Peace; Jacob Bonstoer, S. Pontious, and Andrew Hinton, Trustees; John May, Clerk; A. Rose, Treasurer; J. Throgmorton, Assessor; Andrew Wiggins and A. G. Betzer, Constables; David Jones, Land Appraiser.
     Colerain township, in early days, was a noted place for game of every kind.  Walnut and Salt creeks were headquarters for all the hunters in the neighborhood; their high and craggy banks were the hiding places of bears, panthers, and wolves.  The township is watered by the head waters of Walnut, Salt, and Kinikinick creeks.  The face of the country is part rolling and part level; the soil is rich, and every acre can be tilled.
     Adelpha is the principal town in the township, and is one of the oldest towns in the State.  It has several stores, churches, etc.

Old Settlers.
     Hon. Daniel Kershner was the first pioneer settler in this township, having come in 1796.  He had quite a large farm, and was a man of some prominence.  He served as captain in the war of 1812, and represented the county in the legislature in 1836.  He died in 1844, at the age of eighty-four years.  He had three sons - Daniel, John, and Elisha.  Daniel, Jr., married and settled at the head waters of Walnut creek.  He was captain of the militia, served two terms as county commissioner, and held several township offices.  He is now seventy-two years of age, in good health, and much respected.  John, the second son, is owner of the old stone fort and a farm on Salt creek.

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He married a daughter of the late Colonel Spangler; has held several township trusts.  There are several mounds and one old fort circle on his farm.  Elisha, the third son, lives near John; a good farmer and excellent neighbor.  John Kershner, Jr., is a bachelor, a great land speculator and stock dealer.  The Kershners are all great land owners, men of wealth and influence.
     Hon. Elias Henton was one of the earliest pioneers.  Prior to leaving Virginia he had been elected judge.  He was a noted hunter as early as 1796.  The last panthers and bears he killed were in 1805, on the waters of Walnut creek.  He held the office of justice for twenty-one years, and has served his township in other capacities.  He is still living, much respected by his numerous friends and relatives.  Aaron Jones has taken a great interest in improvements; is a man of sterling principles and sound sense.  He was justice of the peace many years.  Moses Jones was an early pioneer; entered his land in the forest, and made it a fine farm; held several civil and military offices, and was a man of character and highly respected.  Martin Dresback was a pioneer of 1798.  He was a soldier in General Harmar's campaign of 1791 and a noted hunter.  He died at the age of ninety-six years.  John Bookwalter was an early settler in Salt creek valley; a good hunter.  He served as spy from 1783 to 1795 in the campaigns against the Indians.  He died at the age of ninety-five years, and his wife, Barbara, at the age of ninety-eight.  Joseph, Aaron, and William Bookwalter were among the early pioneers, who cleared their farms in the forest wilderness and braved all the dangers of frontier life.  They were men of worth and enterprise.  William is still living on his farm, a useful citizen.  John May was a pioneer of 1799.  He was a great hunter, and served in the wars of 1791 and 1812.  Frederick Pontious was an early settler; a good man, who had much influence in society.  He served several terms as justice.  Washington Jennings was an early emigrant, a good farmer, and quite popular.  He was a justice for many years.  Joseph Poland, Henry Strauser, Isaac Harper, Isaac Larich, George

[Pg. 102]
Flanagan, Jacob Boucher, and Conrad Ruby were all early pioneers, and came at the same time.  Captain John Patterson was of the first settlers of Colerain, a brave, energetic man.  His father was a major in the Revolution.  He served as a captain in the war of 1812, adn was several terms justice of the peace.  He died eighty years of age.  Major Engle, a brave and kind man, and a good farmer, earned his title in the war of 1812.  John Dunn was a farmer and justice; a noted man.  Samuel. Harisinger emigrated at an early day; a farmer; ahs served several years as justice and postmaster at Adelpha.  David Kershner builtt the first distillery in the township.  John Beach was the first innkeeper, and Alexander Smith the first shoemaker.  Peter Marshall established the first boot and shoe store in the township.  John Stelinger was the first carpenter, MArtin Nungester the next; Barton O'Neil, the first blacksmith and carpenter.  Flanagan Merriman an early settler in Colerain, is yet living, at the age of eight-one years.  Nathaniel Throgmorton, an early pioneer his neighbors place great confidence.  He is one of our best citizens, and has raised a large and respectable family.  Peter Goodman a great stock dealer, David Holderman, Conrad Betzer, John Brown, Peter Strauser, Anthony Betzner, and John Strawner were all early pioneers.  Samuel Dresback, an early settler, a man of influence, and full of enterprise, has held several township offices, and is much esteemed.  John Alenather, Henry Hickel, T. W. Hickel, Frederick Haynes, Andrew Haynes; George Gower, an English soldier under Dunmore, from whom Fort Gower took its name; Moses Dawson, David Dawson, Thomas Arnstow, William Hoover, J. D. Smith, D. Jones, Jacob Strouse, Thomas Nutter, Thomas Patton, Jacob Alexander, Jacob Grawutt, N. Justin, Peter White, Peter Nicol, and Noah Clark were all early pioneers - all dead but three, and their descendants scattered over the West.  David C. Bolous, the hermit, was an Indian killer and bear hunter.  He came to the Hocking caves, from the Kanawha region, in Virginia, in 1789.  He was never married, having been disappointed.  Here he lived.

[Pg. 103]
alone in the dense forest, and hunted game, which was in abundance.  He would take the skins, furs, and venison to the Ohio, and sell to the traders.  In 1791 he shifted his quarters to near Fort Harmar, and from there went, as a spy, to the Maumee, with General St. Clair, and was taken prisoner by the Indians, and lived with them until Wayne's treaty in 1795.  He came to old Daniel Kershner's in 1797, and stayed there till the fall of 1799, when he went to the old earth fort on Salt creek, and built a cabin there, in which he lived till the time of his death in 1802.  He had killed, in his time, ninety-six bears, seventy-three wolves, and forty-three panthers.

Ancient Mounds, etc.
     On John Kershner, Jr.'s farm is a model mound, and thirty-five feet high; and on the west bank of Salt creek, an earth fort, in the shape of a half-moon; one large gateway, and a circular earthwork, extending from the half-moon to the ancient earth fort.




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