A Part of Genealogy Express


Welcome to

History & Genealogy

History of Shelby County, Ohio
and representative citizens
Evansville, Ind. -
1913 - 947 pgs.

Chapter XX
Pg. 349

Franklin, Green and Jackson Townships


     Surface and Soil.—The location of Franklin township being in the second tier from the north is crossed by the Greenville Treaty Line and its boundaries are as follows:  Dinsmore is the sister township on the north; Jackson and Salem townships form its east line; Salem, Clinton and Turtle Creek are along the southern border, and Turtle Creek and Van Buren townships bound it on the west. A generally level surface and a rich soil mainly of black loam have made fine agricultural possibilities here, while sand pits and gravel beds in some portions have proved well worth developing. Transportation facilities are excellent, there being fine roads and from north to south runs the Cincinnati, Hamilton & Dayton (the old Day­ton & Michigan Railroad), with shipping points at Swanders, Anna and Botkins. This road is paralleled by the Western Ohio Electric Railroad. which does a good passenger business. This section of Shelby county was largely settled by natives of other parts of Ohio and its people have ever been of the quiet, law-abiding class.
     Villages.—Swanders is a small village of about eighty-six population, centrally located, and has outlived Massena, Woodstock and other once promising settlements. Woodstock, a town of sixty-four lots, was laid out in June, 1836, but the village organization is no longer maintained. In 1857 the Dayton & Michigan Railroad (now the Cincinnati, Hamilton & Dayton) was constructed and in 1867 the company established a flag station about five miles north of Sidney, which was named in honor of James Swander, who was appointed agent of the railroad company, was the first postmaster (1867), and established and conducted the first dry goods and general store.
     Industries.—Tile making was formerly an important industry at Swanders, the tile yards being conducted for a number of years by Killian & Ludlum, but the business has been abandoned. In 1868, Henry Smith erected a steam saw mill, which he sold a year later to. James Swander, who in turn sold out to Bulk & Minniear. The latter firm operated it with success for a number of years, but the business becoming unprofitable,. was finally given up. The most important industry now at Swanders, or indeed in Franklin township, is the grain elevator of W. M. Alton & Son, which is doing a good business. Edward H. Billing is postmaster and conducts a general store.
     Justices of the Peace.—The list of those who have served in the office of justice of the peace in Franklin township is as follows:

1836 May 26 - Cole, Daminett
1837 Jan. 20 - Lenox, John
1839 Apr. 8 - Ross, William
1839 Dec. 28 - Clancy, George
1842 Oct. 17 - Clancey, George
1845 Apr. 25 - Deweese, David
1845 Nov. 15 - Clancey, George
1848 Apr. 17 - Shaw, Thomas
1848 Oct. 21 - Deweese, David
1848 Dec. 30 -Clancey, George
1851 Nov. 8 - Bogan, Henry
1851 Nov. 8 - Clancey, George
1854 Apr. 14 - Wenner, George
1856 May 19 - Ludlum, Eliakim
1857 - Clancey, George
1859 Apr. 12 - Ludlum, Eliakim
1859 Oct. 20 - Deweese, David
1862 Apr. 22 - Ludlum, Eliakim
1865 Apr. 14 - Ludlum, Eliakim
1866 Apr. 11 - Ailes, E. T.
1867 Apr. 5 - Fridley, Lewis
1868 Apr. 13 - Ludlu, Eliakim
1869 Apr. 12 - McDeweese, J. (resigned May 26, 1870)
1871 Apr. 15 - Elliott, J. D. (resigned)
1871 Apr. 11 - Ludlum, Eliakim
1872 Apr. - Staley, Daniel

1874 Apr. 10 - Ludlum, Elias
1875 Apr. 9 - Sitzman, Lorenzo
1876 Apr. 8 - Applegate, Lewis
1877 Apr. 17 - Ludlum, Eliakim
1879 Apr. 17 - Applegate, Lewis
1880 Apr. 14 - Ludlum, Eliakim
1881 Apr. 13 - Young, P. W.
1884-1887 - Young, P. W.
1886-1889 - Ludlum, E.
1887 - Young, P. W.
1889 - Fogt, Peter
1890 - Hagelberger, John
1892 - Fogt, Peter
1893-1896 - Hagelberger, John
1895 - Fogt, Peter
1896 - Maurer, August
1898 - Fogt, Peter
1899-1902 - Maurer, August
1901 - Fogt, Peter
1901 - Bushman, David
1902 - Bertsch, Andrew
1904 - Bertsch, Andrew
1905 - Schiff, George C.
1908 - Schiff, George C.
1911 - Young, P. W.
1912 - Fogt, Peter

     The present clerk of Franklin township is T. S. Price, Trustees: L. W. Border, Lewis Knasel and Anthony Summer.


     The Reformed Church Society.—The early settlers of Franklin township were not slow in taking measures to secure church privileges and the first society formally organized was that known as The Reformed Church Society, in September, 1832, at the house of Jacob Schlosser, by Rev. John Pence. The members of the first class were Jacob Schlosser and wife, James Swander and wife, David Swander and wife, Philip Swander and wife, Henry Swander and wife, Peter Hartman and wife, Jacob Woodring and wife, and Joseph Carmany and wife. They were all earnest Christian people and while they struggled for two years to secure a proper church structure, they became only the more closely united as they met for religious meetings at each other's homes. In 1834, with the help of the Lutheran society, a union building was put up on the Wapakoneta turnpike road. two and half miles south of Anna. It was constructed of hewed logs and its dimensions were 25 by 30 feet. The two church bodies met alternately in this building until 1845, when the Reformed society sold its interest and in the following year erected a frame edifice. The church has a live mem­bership, presided over at present by the Rev. R. R. Yocum, of Maplewood.
     Wesley Chapel Methodist Episcopal Church.—In 1883 the Methodists of Franklin township decided to bring about the organization of a society of their faith and, although there were but seven initial members, their zeal was such that Rev. Thomas Simmes acceded to their request and afterward, for a number of years, regular meetings were held at the house of Philip Young. The church edifice known as Wesley Chapel was erected about 1847, an^ is situated on the Murphy turnpike road near the center of the west line of section 36, north of boundary line, in Franklin township. It has been remodeled in recent years. The church membership at present approaches one hundred and ministers have all been supported and church affairs decorously carried on. The first revival meeting in this neighborhood was held at the home of Philip Young. The last survivor of the original membership was Mrs. Samuel Barley. Rev. J. W. Miller, of Anna, Ohio, is now the pastor of this congregation.
     Plum Creek Methodist Episcopal Church Society.—The frame structure known as the Plum Creek Methodist Church, situated three miles north of Sidney, near Plum creek, on the Wapakoneta turnpike road, was dedicated in November, i860, by Rev. Jacob M. Holmes, but has since been remodeled. The society was organized in February, 1839, by Rev. David Warnock and the first members were Nathan Burress and wife, Thomas Shaw and wife, Henry Yinger and wife Louisa Leapley, Jane McVay, Mary Critton, Caspar Yinger, Valinda Yinger, Elizabeth McVay, David Greenlee, Elizabeth Burress and Sarah Burress. Many of these old township families are yet represented in its membership. Rev. John Parker is present pastor.
      An account of the schools of Franklin township may be found in the chapter on education.


     This township, forming the southeast corner of Shelby county, is five miles square and contains 25 sections of land. It was a part of Orange township prior to March 7, 1820, when it was erected as an independent township. It possesses a fertile soil, is mainly level, and is well drained by various streams, principally by Tawawa or Mosquito creek and Leatherwood creek, with their respective numerous tributaries. There are also numerous drain ditches, which have been established through the flat sections of the township. Settlement here antedates the organization of the township some years, the first known family to penetrate the forest here and establish a home being that of Henry Sturm, who came from Clark county, Ohio, in 1814. This pioneer, with his wife and twelve children, settled in the southwest quarter of section 1.   His children were Matthias, Margaret, Nicholas. Henry, Peter, William, Jacob, Frederick, Ephraim, Elizabeth, George and John, most of whom grew to become well known residents of this or other townships in the county.
     The spring following their arrival marked the coining of Henry Sturm's son-in-law, Samuel Robinson, who also had several small children. Among those who came a little later we may mention: Ezekiel Sargeant, who came from Clark county, Ohio, in 1816; William Bothel, who came from Pennsylvania, in 1816; John R. and Adam Medaris, who came in 1817, and were progressive men and active citizens here for many years; John Ellsworth, who came in 1817: Peter Princehouse, who also came in 1817 or the year following: Thaddeus Turtle, Edward Conroy and family; David Larue, who came from Champaign county, Ohio: all came in 1818. About this time— some of them even earlier— Joseph Park, William Richardson, Jacob Kiser, George W. Frazier, Daniel Apples, John Botkin and John Dorsey cast their lot with the newly developing community.
     Among those of a latter period we might mention Robert C. Cunningham and Samuel Redenbo, who arrived in 1819; Silas Dorsey, in 1824; Peter V. and David S. Sherwood, in 1831; Samuel Bird and William Niswanger, in 1832; John Platt and William B. Williams, in 1833; Elias Barbee, in 1834; Timothy Conover and John Dickensheets, in 1835; Herman R. Hunt, in 1836; Matthias Gray, in 1837; Paul F. Verdier and Samuel Woodward, in 1839; Mahlon Moon, in 1840: and Dr. John C. Leedom, in 1842. Dr. Leedom was by no means the first practicing physician here, as he was preceded by Doctor Pratt, who came as early as 1820, and by a Doctor Little, who came subsequently to Doctor Pratt. The first election was held in the house of John R. Medaris in April, 1820. The first justices of the peace were Henry Sturm and Charles Johnston, who were chosen at the election above mentioned. The first clerk was Charles Dorsey.
     The justices in order after the first election of Mr. Sturm and Mr. Johnston were:

1835 - Jackson, Philip
1836 - Vaughn, Thomas
1836 - Barbee, Elias
1839 - Barbee, Elias
1839 - Vaughn, Thomas
1842 - Sherieff, X.
1842 - Vaughn, Thomas
1845 - Sherieff, N.
1845 - Vaughn, Thomas
1848 - Sherieff, N.
1849 - Lewis, Samuel
1851 - Hunt, Ira F.
1852 - Hume, John
1854 - Carey, Alexander E.
1855 - Beezley, William
1860 - Lewis, Samuel
1863 - Smith, A. L.
1865 - Bowersock, David
1866 - Simes, L. G.
1868 - Bowersock, David
1869 - Simes, L. G.
1871 - Bowersock, David
1872 - Simes, L. G.
1874 - Bowersock, David
1875 - Simes, G. G.
1877 - Lewis, Samuel
1878 - Simes, G. L.
1880 - Bowersock, David
1881 - Simes, L. G.
1884 - Simes, L. G.
1885 - Sargent, John
1887 - Simes, L. G.
1888 - Bennett, Madison
1890 - Simes, L. G.
1890 - Baker, E. M.
1893 - Simes, L. G.
1893 - Yost, Elisha
1896 - Prince, David N.
1899 - Yost, Elisha
1901 - Marrs, E. O.
1902 - Baker, W. H.
1903 - Needles, E.
1905 - Baker, N. H.
1908 - Jackson, C. A.
1908 - Wiley, E. E.
1911 - Kiser, T. J.

     E. F. Rolfe is the present township clerk, and the trustees are W. F. Valentine, J. L. Atkinson and Harvey Wiley.

Schools.-—Although this subject is dealt with in another chapter of this volume, we may here make some mention of. the pioneer school. It was at first held in the homes of the settlers. About the year 1818 or 1819 a school was conducted in a primitive round log building on the farm of David Larue, in section 10. The first term consisted of but seven days and it is related that the teacher, Mr. Dorsey, received but fifty cents a day, or three and a half dollars for the term. The first house built especially for school purposes was erected in 1820 near the old graveyard in what is now Plattsville. Miss Lucy Wilson was the first instructor here. In 1821 another log schoolhouse was built near the Sturm graveyard, and the first teacher was Doctor Pratt. Until 1853, there were none but subscription schools, but on June 18th of that year the township was divided into six school districts and a tax levied on the township for school purposes.. The first brick schoolhouse had its inception in that year, and since that time the community has been blessed with good buildings and superior instruction, school affairs being under the guidance of capable directors chosen from among the citizens whose hearts were in the work.
Churches.—Hand in hand with development educationally and commercially, was the development spiritually. From almost the first the settlers were wont to gather in the home of some settler for divine worship, and from this humble beginning societies were gradually formed and in time churches erected. Denominational lines were not so closely drawn in those days, as there were too few of any one denomination. We herewith present facts regarding some of the religious bodies that struggled and conquered under the most adverse circumstances:
     The Salem Methodist Episcopal church was organized in 1825 by Rev. Simes or Rev. Westlake, and among the most prominent of its members were David Larue and wife, Silas Dorsey and wife, and Mrs. Jemima Conroy. A hewed log church was erected in section 4, and served as long as the organization continued, which was until about the year 1840.
The Charity Chapel Methodist Protestant church was organized about 1840, with Silas Dorsey as the leader of the society, it drawing considerably from the membership of the Salem Methodist Episcopal church. Meetings were held in Mr. Dorsey's house for a number of years, when a frame building was erected in section 4 of Green township. It ceased to exist as a church body in 1864 or 1865,
The Spring Creek Christian church was organized March 15, 1851, by James T. Hunt and James Skillen in a log schoolhouse on the Cephas T.. Sanders farm, with sixty-one members. Meetings were held in the school building until 1852, when a frame building was constructed in the southeast corner of section 28, near the Miami county line.. It was dedicated in 1853 by Rev. Griffin. In 1868, a fine new church building was erected and was dedicated in November of that year by Rev. James Linn. Among the original members may be mentioned: Cephas and Nancy Sanders, Cephas T. Sanders, Rachel Sanders, David and Chloe Sherwood, John Luseney, Martha Luseney, Martha Sanders, David and Catherine Wiles, William and Rachel Williams, Jackson and Mary Cramer, John and Almira Henman, David and Matilda Hall, and Catherine Sanders. It started out with a goodly membership, and the church affairs have always continued in a good healthy condition. The present pastor is Rev. L. W. Ryan.
     Charity Chapel Christian church was organized in the Methodist. Protestant church building in 1864 or J865 by Elder Asbury Watkins. William Benham and Thomas Stith were appointed the first deacons of the church. Worship was held in the Methodist Protestant building Until 1878, when they erected a building of their own, which was dedicated on December 27, 1878, by Elder E. M. Rapp. The church is served by Rev. L. W. Ryan, pastor of the Spring Creek Christian church.
     The Methodist Episcopal society at New Palestine (now Tawawa) had its inception about the year 1820, and was organized by Rev. Finley. Among the members were Philip Locker and wife, William Bathel and wife, Jacob Kiser and wife, and Ezekiel Sargeant and wife. They met around at the various homes for worship and continued in that way while the organization lasted, which was until the late thirties.
     The Christian church at New Palestine had its beginning in an organi­zation formed at the residence of Daniel Neal in Champaign county, by Elders Jeremiah Fusion and John T. Robertson. The latter was the first pastor and meetings were held in the Neal home for about one year, and in May, 1838, they equipped a vacant house on the Ira Hunt farm in Green township with seats, using that as their house of worship for many years. They next built a frame church in New Palestine, which was dedicated in June, 1851, by Elder Samuel Fusion, assisted by Elder Justus T. Hunt. When this building proved inadequate for further use for church purposes. the society erected a larger structure near the old one, it being dedicated January 1, 1882, by Elder A. L. McKinney, of Troy, Ohio. The original members of the congregation were Ira and Anna Hunt, Justus T. Hunt and wife, David Bever and wife, Daniel Neal and wife, Joseph Basey and wife, David Greeley and wife, Ira F. Hunt and wife, Eleanor Woolley, Mary A. Flemmon and Daniel Currier. This church is at present served by Rev. A. J. Adriance, of Defiance, Ohio.
     The Plattsville Methodist Episcopal church, at one time known as the Antioch Methodist Episcopal church, was organized about 1819 or 1820, and until 1828 or thereabouts, meetings were held in the homes of various members. In that year or the following a hewed log building was erected on the ground later occupied by the cemetery at Plattsville, the land being donated for that purpose by Thaddeus Turtle. They continued in this building until 1849, when a new one was built on property purchased at Plattsville, from John R. Medaris.  The church was dedicated in 1850, the name being changed from the Antioch Methodist Episcopal church to the Plattsville Methodist Episcopal church society. Among the original members were Thaddeus Turtle and wife, John R. Medaris and wife, and William Ellsworth and wife.
     The Plattsville Universalist church was erected in 1877, and was dedicated on July 29th of that year by T. S. Guthrie, assisted by the local pastor, Rev. J. D. Lawer. The society was organized on September 30th following, J. D. Lawer and thirty-six others constituting the membership. It has been a very prosperous organization. Rev. Colgrove is the present pastor.

     Villages.New Palestine, Plattsville and Ballou are the villages which have existed in Green township.
     New Palestine was laid out on September zj, 1832, by Ephraim Davidson, who owned the land on which it was located, and the first settlers in the village were George Swiger and family. The first store was conducted by John Stephen, and the first hotel by Joseph Knot. The former postoffice for this village was named Tawawa, but has been abandoned, and the vil­lage is now known by its original name only. New Palestine has two lodges, a K. G. E., with a membership of ninety-eight, and on I. O. R. M. lodge, membership about sixty.
     Plattsvlle, with a population of 134, is located near, the center of Green. township, on what was the old John R. Medaris farm. The latter had it surveyed in 1844 by Jonathan Counts, and it was recorded September 26, 1844. In 1849, an addition to the village was surveyed for J. R. Medaris, and this was recorded on July 4th of that year. The first business at this point was an ashery and general store, of which Thomas Farshee was proprietor. The Methodist Episcopal and the Universalist churches are located here, drawing membership largely from surrounding territory. Plattsville Lodge No. 643, I. O. O. F., was instituted in the village on July 12, 1876, by Nathan Jones, grand master of Ohio. The original members were: Samuel Griffis, L. P. Redenbo, P. R. Hunt, B. F. Johnson, G. W. Frazier, W. H. Bulle, J. T. Princehouse, W. L. Woolley, D. Bowersock and James Williams.
     Industries of Green Township.—The first mill was established by John Medaris, and was a corn cracker, located near the village of Plattsville. A water power saw mill was erected on Leatherwood creek, in 1826 or 1827, by William Ellsworth, and a few years later Abraham Medaris also built a saw mill in the same locality near Plattsville. The next saw mill was the one conducted by Samuel Robinson on Leatherwood creek. In 1854 Hageman Brothers built a steam saw mill one mile south of Plattsville, and a steam saw mill was built by John Sargeant and John Neal near New Palestine. In 1879, a portable steam saw mill was started by Gabriel Harbaugh. and was operated many years with great success. At the present time William F. Valentine operates the only tile mill in the township, his output being from 18 to 22 kilns annually. Mr. Valentine also engages in ditch contracting and in a season uses over 200 carloads of tile additional to the product of his own plant.
     The present township clerk of Green is E. F. Rolfe, Trustees: W. F. Valentine, J. L. Atkinson and Harvey Wiley.


     Jackson township, which is bordered on the north by Auglaize county, on the east by Logan county, has Salem township on its south and Dinsmore and Franklin townships on its western boundaries. Its general settlement was more recent than many of the other townships, although, in 1912, it  may lay just claim to being one of the most important. While the land was originally heavily timbered, the soil proved very fertile and all agricultural activities have prospered.


     In 1831 James McCormick, traveling from Green county, found desir­able land in what is now Jackson township and entered a tract in section 34 There are no other recorded transactions in land until 1833, when Andrew Nogle, of Fairfield county, settled in section 30. In the following year another pioneer, Thomas Cathcart, of Montgomery county, made an entry of land in section 33; and from the same county, in 1835, came David Snider and William Johnston. In 1837 the homesteaders were John W. Knight, Jeptha M. Davis, Dudley Hughes and William Babcock, and in 1838-1839, Jonathan Howell and Samuel Brandenberg. There is no further record of permanent settlers until 1843, when Christian Hawver of Miami county, located in section 33. Two years later, Philip Hawver, of the same county, bought 160 acres of the McPherson grant, and in the following year a member of the same family, George Hawver, also settled here. Other early settlers whose date of location cannot be definitely stated were Mathew Vandine, Timothy Wale, Julius Wale, Moses Quick, Kimmer Hudson, Henry Roland, Lewis Bland, Reuben Clayton and William Dawdon. It is probable that Luther L. Davis came about 1837 and that Jacob H. and David Babcock may have come in 1840. The McPherson section of grant above alluded to, comprises 640 acres lying entirely within Jackson township and was a special grant to James McPherson by the St. Mary's treaty of 1818.
     Mills—Perhaps no industry in a pioneer region is more necessary than that of milling and where water could be utilized there was always some man enterprising enough to build a mill; even when no fall in a stream was sufficient, a horse mill was frequently built. The first mill in Jackson township—one of the latter character—was erected by Daniel Davis, in 1839, being located on the north half of the southwest quarter of section 3. Ten years later Joel Babcock erected a steam saw mill in what is now the town of Jackson Center, but it was destroyed by fire in 1868. In the following year the Babcocks erected another mill on the same site and operated it until 1875, when it was purchased by R. F. Buirley, who continued its operation. In: 1866 the firm of McCod & Slusser built a saw mill, in section 33, operated it until 1881, the firm becoming McCord & Munch. For many years the Dearbaugh operated a saw mill and also a handle factory at Jackson Center, .the latter being erected during the summer of 1882. Among present or recent industries are a cane mill, which has been operated for three years by William Hughes; also the mill and grain elevator of L. Kraft, who purchased it from William Ludwig. This, one of the most extensive business concerns of the township, was destroyed by a fire, in December, 1912, the loss was  estimated at $15,000.


     Jackson township has several important business centers. The village of Montra, with a present population of 160, was surveyed May 22, 1849, and is situated in the north half of the southeast quarter of section 18, town. 7, range 7 east. At first the village houses were constructed of logs and the first store was in a log building, conducted by a Mr. Mahuren, who was also post­master and he not only carried the mail to Port Jefferson but also carried the greater part of his store stock, making his trips on foot. He evidently was. a man of considerable enterprise, as he also conducted an ashery and a cooper shop. The village has several thriving industries at the present time, including the grocery and restaurant of Daniel Collins and the establishment of J. C. Heintz, devoted to pumps, steel tanks and wind engines.


     The situation of Jackson Center is in the north part of the township, in sections 10 and 15, consists of twenty-four lots and the plat was recorded May 4, 1835: The first postmaster was E. P. Stout, who was also the first merchant. There has always been a considerable amount of business done here, among the present industries being the following: The Richmond Auto Company, automobiles and supplies; R. S. Heinler, hardware; J. B. Zehner, drugs; Chas. M. Lambert, musical goods and bicycles; Dearbaugh & Moodie, general merchandise; L. H. Sollman, bakery and restaurant; Mrs. G. A. Swickard, millinery, and the mill interests already mentioned. Dr. L. M. Babcock has a well appointed dental office here. There is also a good newspaper published here—The Jackson Center News, proprietor, J. G. Sailor, a fuller account of which can be found in the chapter on the Press of Shelby county. For mention of the First National Bank of Jackson Center see, chapter on Banks and Banking.


     Education both secular and religious has been a leading interest with the people of Jackson township and intelligence and good citizenship prevail. The more important educational statistics of the township may be found in the chapter on Education.
     Jackson Center Seventh Day Baptist church was organized March 22, 1840, at the house of Solomon Sayrs, by Elder James Bailey, assisted by Elders Simeon Babcock and S. A. Davis, with about thirty members, viz., Luther L. Davis, Solomon Sayrs and wife, Emeline Sayrs, Dudley Hughes, Davis Loofborough and wife, Calvin Davis and wife, James M. Davis and wife, Uriah Davis and wife, James Davis and wife, John W. Knight and wife, Simeon Babcock, and some others whose names are not mentioned. They held their meetings at the houses of the different members alternately, making the house of Solomon Sayrs their regular place for holding the quarterly. meeting about two years, or until 1842, when the society erected a hewed log church building west of Jackson Center.  Maxson Babcock and Jacob Maxson were appointed deacons of the church, Brooks Akers was: the clerk, and Eled Simeon Babcock was the first minister in charge, and remained as such for over twenty years. The society met in the log church building for several years, or until the erection and completion of the old frame church building one-fourth of a mile west of Jackson Center, which was dedicated in September, 1859, by Elder L. A. Davis, assisted by Elders. S. Babcock, Benjamin, Clement, and Elder Maxson. In May, 1881, the society began the erection of a fine frame church building in Jackson Center 48 by 30 feet, which was completed at a cost of about $2,000, and dedicated during the summer of 1882. The present pastor is Rev. E. L. Lewis.
     St. Jacob's Lutheran church was organized in April, 1851, its original membership being Jacob Zorn, Sr., Jacob Zorn, Jr., Jacob Metz, Sr., Philip Metz; Philip Kempfer, Sr., Michael Elsass, Jacob Nonnoront, Michael Keis, Sr., Nicholas Shearer, Michael Shearer, and their wives, together with John Iseman and wife, Jacob Iseman and wife, George Heinz and wife, and Mrs. Elizabeth Christler. Nicholas Shearer, John Iseman and Jacob Zorn were the first church trustees. Under the direction of Rev. George Spangler the company purchased a little over one acre of land in the northeast quarter of section 6, town. 7, range 7, on which a hewed log structure was built and this continued to be used as a meeting place until in 1877 when a commodious brick church building was put up. The church has maintained its organiza­tion up to the present time. Rev. Mr. Pfluger, of Botkins, is now serving as pastor.
     St. Emanuel's Lutheran Church—The Lutherans at Montra united in 1860 and a society was organized by Rev. Henry King. They were earnest people who were willing to meet for worship in an old storeroom until a proper church edifice could be completed, which was accomplished in the fall of 1862. Services were held here until the building was destroyed by fire in 1874, the membership having increased and during the summer of 1875.  The new church building was erected on the old site. Many gifted preachers and zealous Christians have ministered to this congregation since then. The present pastor is Rev. B. F. Mittler.
     Montra Methodist Episcopal Church—The Methodist faith was professed by some of the earliest settlers at Montra, but they had no special church organization until in the winter of 1864-65, when Elijah Holmes and wife, Mrs. Mary Foster, Henry Carter and wife, Samuel J. Piles and wife, William Baker, Elizabeth Kah and Joab Click and wife, under the direction of Revs. Rinehart and Smith, became a recognized religious body. The society worshiped for several years in an old log building in the town but were able to dedicate a new structure in June; 1879, the minister then in charge being Rev. J. B. Findley. Rev. B. F. Smith, of Jackson Center, is now serving the congregation. .
     Pleasant Hill Methodist Episcopal Church—This church, located one mile east of Jackson Center, was organized some time prior to 1838. The earliest class included Andrew Holmes and wife, Lewis Bland and wife, Thomas McVay and wife, Henry and James Roland and their wives, Philip Keith and wife, John Armstrong and wife, Mary Kertier and others. The first meetings were held in private houses, but by 1843 a log structure was put up, which was supplanted in 1853 by a frame edifice. The latter continued to be the church home until the erection of a much more pretentious one in 1882, at which time the membership numbered some sixty families, with missionary and other organizations. This society, however, disbanded some time ago and is no longer in existence.
     There is also at Jackson Center a Disciples, or Church of Christ, organization, Rev. Harry Stinson being its pastor.


The list of justices of the peace that have served in Jackson township'from 1836 until 1910 will show that representative men here have held this important position:

1836 Nov. 8 - Maxwell, James
1837 Oct. 21 - Cathcart, Thomas M.
1839 Oct. 14 - Noland, Wesley
1840 Nov. 9 - Cathcart, Thomas M.
1842 Apr. 28 - Meranda, Newland
1842 Oct. 17 - Noland, Wesley
1845 Apr. 24 - Meranda, Newland
1848 Oct. 21 - Elliott, John C.
1846 Apr. 22 - Loofbourrow, Davis
1851 Nov. 8 - McCormick, Valentine
1858 Apr. 16 - Hopkins, E. H.
1860 Nov. 10 - Ailes, H. M.
1861 Apr. 22 - Hopkins, E. H.
1863 Oct. 18 - Young, Peter M.
1866 Oct. 17 - Elliott, John C.
1867 Oct. 15 - Young, P. M.
1869 Oct. 18 - Elliott, John C.
1870 Oct. 19 - Moodie, John
1872 Oct. 12 - Ailes, Alfred
1873 Oct. 20 - Moodie, John
1875 Oct. 20 - Ailes, Alfred
1876 Oct. 18 - Moodie, John
1878 Oct. 14 - Ailes, Alfred
1879 Oct. 18 - Moodie, John
1881 Oct. 19 - Ailes, Alfred
1882 Mar. 18 - Ailes, H. P.
1884 - Babcock, J. C. (resigned Mar. 9, 1886)
1885 - Ailes, H. P.
1886 - Moodie, John
1888 - Ailes, H. P.
1889 - Applegate, Louis (resigned same year)
1889 - Hussey, James M.
1891 - Ailes, H. P.
1892 - Hussey, James M.
1894 - Ailes, H. P.
1894 - Leininger, J. A.
1897 - Ailes, H. P.
1900 - Ailes, H. P.
1900 - Davis, A. A.
1903 - Ailes, H. P.
1903 - Davis, A. A.
1906 - Babcock, C. F.
1906 - Ailes, H. P.
1909 - Ailes, H. P. (appointed)
1909 Jan. 22 - Babcock C. F. appointed, resigned Apr. 5, 1909
1909 - Sailor, J. G.
1910 - Ailes, H. P.
1910 - Baker, W. E.

     The present township clerk is Geo. P. Staley.
     Trustees—William Schneeberger, Jacob Helmlinger and J. .M. Hughs.


     Jackson township has several flourishing fraternal organizations. Lodge No. 736, Odd Fellows at Jackson Center, has about one hundred members. Granite Camp No. 15573, at Jackson Center has an active membership o£ thirty-one.
     Epler Lodge, No. 458, F. & A. M. was organized at Montra, Shelby county, Ohio, on the 25th of November, 1871, and began working under dispensation, with officers as follows: T. W. Epler, W. M.; H. S. Ailes, S. W.; A. A. Davis, J. W.; J. E. Elliott, treas.; J. C. Grafton, sec; D. Glick, S. D.; G. W. Elliott, J. D.; E. V. Ailes, Tyler. The charter members were C. M. Davis, J. M. Carter, H. Arnett, B. R Wren, and H. M. Stout.  They received their charter on the 16th of October, 1872. Their place of meeting was at Montra until December 17, 1877, when they moved to Jackson Center, where they have since held their meetings.
Poplar Knob Grange is an active and flourishing society, with W. C. Baker and Sidney Ailes, trustees.

- History of Shelby County - Publ. 1913




LICK HERE to Return to

CLICK HERE to Return to

This Webpage has been created by Sharon Wick exclusively for Genealogy Express  ©2008
Submitters retain all copyrights