History of Galloway, Ohio – Part 1

(The following was recorded from memory by Myrtle Brooks Burnside with the help of George Lavely, and is reprinted from “Reflections II”, a collection of local stories available at the Grove City Welcome Center and Museum. Any opinions made in the article are from the authors.)

The military grant in this area was in 1887, $1 per acre. Some purchased large sections. People lived in this vicinity as early as 1852 in log cabins. As I was the first child who lived in what is now Galloway, I remember quite a number of event of events that probably would be of much interest, if I had the time to relate them.

Several years after Roseline Smith with her family, had moved into what was known as the woods, which was something less than a mile north of what is now known as Galloway, my father, Nells J. Brooks with my mother and myself moved near the home of Roseline Smith; Mrs. Smith being my father’s sister. This move was made in February 1872, just 50 years ago.

The ambition of Roseline Smith and Samuel Galloway was to have a town here for the accommodation of the farmers of the surrounding county where they could sell their grain and avoid the distance to Columbus and where they could also get produce for themselves.

The roads being impassable many times, slabs and sawdust from the sawmill were used to repair them. This was done by alternating layers of sawdust with layers of slabs, thereby making very good roads. As much hauling was done over them, they needed replenishing often, which was not difficult, is there was much material at hand. After reaching the National Road, there was a good pike. It may seem strange to the younger generation to try to realize that it took two-and-a-half to three hours to travel from the National Road to Galloway.

In the winter time Mr. and Mrs. Smith would start very early for Columbus, if the weather was cold, in order to get through before the fall. They traveled in a large spring wagon and would bring back great quantities of groceries, dry goods, drugs such as quinine and other ague cures. The ague was very bad because of the swampy conditions of the land. The woodcutters gave them large orders for drugs.

After a day of hurried shopping they would start for home, find a team of oxen awaiting them where they left the National Road. The two oxen together with the two horses hitched to their spring wagon, would finally get them home after pulling them through mud which sometimes reached the hubs.

(The continuation of this story in the next blog entry).

Darbydale Reunion Marks End of Old School and 101st Anniversary

(The following was originally published in the July 28, 1939 edition of the Columbus Dispatch and is reprinted from “Reflections II”, a collection of local stories available at the Grove City Welcome Center and Museum. Any opinions made in the article are from the author.)

NOTE: The present-day Darbydale was then called “Little Pennsylvania”.

Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Green expect to have a marvelous time Sunday afternoon for the 101st anniversary of the founding of Pennsylvania School District in Pleasant Township near Harrisburg, Ohio. Along with their enjoyment will be a note of sorrow for the one-room schoolhouse, which was used as an educational center for five generations of their family, and will be officially retired from service at the reunion.

The Little Old Red School House is always had a tender spot in the hearts of the Green family all through their entire history. Some members of the family have always been closely connected with it. Mr. and Mrs. Green who are 79 and 75 are in charge of the reunion which is expected to attract 1,000 people.

Just 66 years ago Mrs. Green, then Ella Hay and her husband played together in the schoolyard. She was the granddaughter of Edward Hey who had to quit the site to the Pennsylvania School District when the land was settled by members of the state that bears its name.

She recalls when she and her husband would participate in the neighborhood snowball fights, go sleigh riding and many other fun activities. All their lives the Greens have resided in Pleasant Township and nine years ago the couple purchased a grocery store in Harrisburg. They’re both active in the store and have built up quite a cordon of friends in their 18 years of residence there.

The Green’s seven sons and two daughters all attended the school. Through the ages when her grandfather, Edward Hay lived in the school district, there have been three changes in the school. First it was a log cabin and then the one-room edifice that stands in the corner of the property with a new coat of white paint ready for auction by the school board. Up until June the red brick one room school building, the last one in this part of the state served the Pennsylvania School District, but now is being closed and the pupils moved to the new school in Harrisburg. After Sunday the land goes back to the Greens as direct descendants of Edward Hay.

From noon to sundown there will be a basket picnic on the old school grounds under the direction of the Greens and their committee consisting of Mr. and Mrs. Lovingshimer, Mr. and Mrs. Reiter, Mr. and Mrs. McFarland, Mr. and Mrs. Ringer and Mr. and Mrs. Hughes.

They will have a reading of minutes for the first meeting of the school board to follow with a roll call of former scholars by former teachers. included are Della Spangler of Green Hill, John Hare, Hattie Collins, Eva McNinch, Mary Keyzer, Ora Bodle and Belle Leiter of Columbus, Percy Rider of Grove City, and his wife Mina (last teacher at the school), Mrs. Gordon Sabina of Philo, Effie Redmond and Hester Haenszel of Harrisburg, Ruth Schilling of Georgesville, Mary Brynum of Galloway, Gladys Beavers of Commercial Point, Fletcher Andrix of London, Clyde Breckonridge of Pleasant Corners and others.

Jackson Township’s First Community “Borror’s Corners”

(The following was written by Earl Nicholson and is reprinted from “Reflections II”, a collection of local stories available at the Grove City Welcome Center and Museum. Any opinions made in the article are from the author.)

As is implied by the name, “Borror’s Corners” was located at the intersection of State Route 104 and 665. The Franklin County plat map of 1912 still showed 665 as the “London Shadeville Free Pike”. The 1883 plat map still show the name “Borror’s Corners”  at the intersection. I’ve not seen anything to indicate Borror’s Corners was ever more than an unincorporated Village.

We know from the early plat maps as well as the James seeds family history that there was a crossing point on the Scioto River just south of Shadeville. We also know the following early pioneers of Jackson Township located in that area before Pickaway County was formed (1810). John Currie – 1801 (he was born while crossing the Atlantic while the family was on their way to America). John settled in what later became Pickaway County. Percival Adams – 1803, Woolery Conrad – 1804, William Duff – 1806 (a wheelwright) and Henry Baumgartner.

The following families settled in the area before 1820: James Seeds, Jacob Strader, Absalom Borror, Magdalene Borror (widow of a revolutionary war soldier), Hawes Barbee and John Curry, Jr.

The first school in the township was formed at Borror’s Corners in 1815 on the land of Solomon Borror. This was a subscription school. Each family helped support the school and the teacher either by money, supplies or providing room and board for the teacher. (Ten years passed before property was taxed to support public education – 1825). This school, of about 20 students, was taught by Asa Davis, and made up of primarily Borrors, Millers, Seeds, Fishels and Fitzgeralds.

The first store in the township was started by Absalom Borror. Many of the first blacksmiths settled around Borror’s Corners. The first church in the township was started by William Miller in 1812 in his home. By 1815, a church organization was formed and a few years later, a log church was constructed on the land of Christopher Strader. In 1850 the new Scioto Chapel was built on the land of Solomon Borror adjacent to Christopher Strader on Jackson Pike.

On September 18th, 1996, the Ohio Historical Society installed a historical marker at Borror’s Corners, the junction of Ohio Routes 104 and 665. One side of the marker describes Borror’s Corners, as the area was known for many years. The other side honors the Pioneer Borror family and the settlement begun by the widowed Magdalene Strader-Borror and her seven children.

Bean Corners

(The following was written by Marilyn Gibboney and is reprinted from “Reflections II”, a collection of local stories available at the Grove City Welcome Center and Museum. Any opinions made in the article are from the author.)

The intersection of two County Roads sometimes gave the area a particular name in the earlier days of the century. Sometimes they were named after families of the area or the streams nearby. Sometimes people don’t remember why or how they got the name. Such a name is Bean Corners. This spot is located at the junction of Johnson Road and Big Run Road. Johnson Road dead-ends into Big Run Road at this point.

Many years ago the township lines were more important and hear one side of the road was Prairie Township and the other was Pleasant. The nearby farm known for many years as the “Haenszel” place was in both townships. The township line did not follow the road. Near the junction of the roads Charlie Haenszel had a blacksmith shop and the neighboring farmers would take their horses to be shod there. According to Alfred Schoch who remembers “Old Charlie” he would only shoe the horses when and if he felt like it. As a boy his parents would send him down the road to have the horses shod and Charlie was busy doing something else he would tell the boy to go home and come back later.

Alfred’s older brother, Elvin, was nicknamed “Beany” and everyone in the neighborhood called him that. Alfred said he supposed it came from living near that area. The Schoch home place is located on Johnson Road very near Bolton Field. All but 10 acres were bought and became part of Bolton Field. Alfred said he does not know why the corner was called Bean Corners. Wilma Marcum said that she remembers some of the older generation saying that the farmers couldn’t grow anything but beans in that corner because of the “V” shaped in the road. Interesting!

History of Grove City Schools – Part 5

(The following was written by Faye White Moreland and is reprinted from “Reflections II”, a collection of local stories available at the Grove City Welcome Center and Museum. Any opinions made in the article are from the author.)

Ethel Hoover and Bessie Grant of the class of 1898, selected the high school colors of crimson and blue. Teachers salaries ranged from $38 to $62.50 per month. The clerk and treasurer of the school board each received $12 per year. The school was getting crowded again. On February 2nd, 1902, Martha A. Houston, unmarried, sold Lots No. 30 and No. 31 to the Board of Education of Grove City Special School District for a total of $400. See Deed Book 349, page 283, Recorder’s Office. The total of 4 lots comprised the city block is it now stands at the present school site. The city block cost a total of $450.01.

When the Brumbaugh Law, classifying high school, went into effect, Grove City, having but one high school teacher, was necessarily a class III High School. This fact, and overcrowding of the grammar school grades, induced the Board of Education to submit to the people, the question of a board issue to provide more room. The issue was voted down. The following year, 1903, the question was again submitted. It carried. The second section of two rooms, one up and one down, was added to the northwest corner of the first section. This addition was made in 1903. Pot-bellied individual heating stoves were placed in the new rooms. Another teacher was added to the grade staff. Four grade rooms of forth-five pupils each were now in session.

On September 1st, 1905, the high school course became a four-year course. There was no high school graduating class of 1905. Instead, it went another year and graduated in 1906. This was the first four-year high school graduation class. A second high school teacher was hired in September 1905, to give the extra instruction. Through the efforts of Supt. A.C. Fries, the Grove City High School became a Class A high school. The doors of colleges were then opened it to our graduates without further examination.

History of Grove City Schools – Part 4

(The following was written by Faye White Moreland and is reprinted from “Reflections II”, a collection of local stories available at the Grove City Welcome Center and Museum. Any opinions made in the article are from the author.)

A high school charter was secured in 1895. High school was a three-year course of study at that time. The first high school graduation was that of the class of 1896. There were four members in this class.

An editorial of the first graduation was written in the Grove City Blade issue of Thursday, June 4th, 1896. (The Grove City Blade was the first newspaper in Grove City. It started business in 1894.) The write-up states that the Grove City School, in the past and present, is the most prominent in the township, and rivaled by few villages. It also printed, “A.C. Fries, now superintendent, stated that this first commencement of Grove City High School marks an Epoch in the history of the town.”

Dr. Hoover, president of the Board of Education, introduced the speaker. The speaker was Honorable O.T. Corson, State Commissioner of Schools. He gave a “sound, hitting-the-nail-on-the-head”, speech. He emphasized that the most essential thing for every avocation of life was education.

The members of the Board of Education in 1896 were: Dr. Will Hoover, A.L. Nichols, Edward F. Darnell, John Baumgartner, D.D. Dupree and Aaron Neiswander. Teachers in 1896 were: A.C. Fries, Miss Ivy Clark, Miss Jesse Snouffer and Miss Dora Caywood. The total enrollment that year was 200.

There were no lights in this school at this time. On stormy days, the rooms were quite dark, consequently, little studying was done. There were no modern inside toilets. The four rooms were individually heated with “pot belly” stoves.

High school students were attending here from other school districts: Jackson, Pleasant, Franklin and Prairie townships in Franklin County and Scioto Township in Pickaway County.

Drinking water was pumped from a covered dug well, about 50 feet southeast from the front door steps of the school. The long handle of the pump had a heavy iron counterbalance weight on the other end. An interesting little story about this pump took place along about 1917. One day a boy by the name of Russell Darnell, stooped to pick up a marble he had dropped under the weight. Just as he stooped, a girl lifted the handle to pump a cup of water. The weight went down on Russ’s head, and the stars of the universe, he did see.

(The conclusion of this story in the next blog entry).

History of Grove City Schools – Part 3

(The following was written by Faye White Moreland and is reprinted from “Reflections II”, a collection of local stories available at the Grove City Welcome Center and Museum. Any opinions made in the article are from the author.)

In 1886 the school was crowded. The following year, the voters turned down a bond issue, saying the taxes would be ruinous. However in 1888, the voters passed the bond issue to build a four-room brick schoolhouse. They argued first over a three or 4-room building. The four-room backer won.

Before putting up this third school building, the Board of Education of Grove City Special School District procured, after considerable negotiation, the title to Lot No. 32 (the easterly of the two school lots) from the Jackson Township Board of Education. The title was then clear to both lots and vested in the Grove City Special School District. Building preceded in 1888 on both lots

That year the first or front section of three sections of the present grade school was erected from brick made in the Grove City Brickyard operated by A.G. Grant. William Sibray and his son, J.E. Sibray, were awarded the contract for the brick masonry. The first section had four rooms, two up and two down. The two lower rooms were used until 1890. The teachers were Supt. L.T. Fisher and Gertrude Mench. In 1890, A.C. Fries join the school’s staff. A third room was opened for his class.

Supt. L.T. Fisher began to develop a high school. Four years later, a fourth teacher, Miss Jesse Snouffer, was added to the teaching staff and the work in the fourth, (upper west room), became more distinctly, one for a high school curriculum.

Some of the teachers, other than those already mentioned, proceeding 1895 were: A.L. Nichols, George Smith, S.E. Johnson, Eva McGiven, Olga Brush and Bertha Lynch.

(The continuation of this story in the next blog entry).

History of Grove City Schools – Part 2

(The following was written by Faye White Moreland and is reprinted from “Reflections II”, a collection of local stories available at the Grove City Welcome Center and Museum. Any opinions made in the article are from the author.)

A second and larger 2-room frame school building was erected on Lot No. 33 in 1870. The directors of the Board of Education of Grove City Special School District decided to build the new 2-room frame school on the newly acquired Lot No. 33, because the title was clear. Moreover, the title to the log school on Lot No. 32 was vested in the Board of Education of Jackson Township. The new school was built and the inadequate log school was removed. Conveniences were more modern. When this second school building was no longer suitable in size or convenience for school purposes, it was sold. Mr. A.G. Grant purchased this building, moved it to where the Norris Funeral home now stands, and converted it to a double house for rental purposes. It was torn down in 1939. Some of the early teachers in this school were, William Barnett, Samuel Parks, Lydia Spade, Ardylis Harsh, Matilda Grant and David Braggs.

Among the rules and regulations adopted by the early Board of Education of Grove City Special School District were the following: “It shall be the duty of the board to provide at least two sessions in every year; the first to commence on or about the first Monday in November and to continue four months of twenty-two days per month. The school during the second session to be divided into two departments whenever the board scholars demand it.”

Other sections provided for legal holidays, for teaching certain branches, for regulations of conduct, and suspension of undesirable pupils. One section reads: “It shall be the duty of teachers to prevent pupils from going to hanging around the stores or taverns during recess.” the code was signed by Joseph Bulen, William Nichols, and R. Higgy, Directors of the Board.

Until 1886, the Board of Education consisted of three members. It was then increased to six. Among the names of the earlier members we find: Dr. Bulen, R. Higgy, William Nichols, Igantz Miller, Elias White, Jonathan Gantz, George Weygandt, Daniel Smith and Nelson Grant. Later, W.R. Mench, W.H. Barbee, Aaron Neiswander, Ezra Neiswander, R.D. Grant and Dr. Hoover. In the early 1900s, members were John Baumgartner, J.E. Stump, Dr. Nesley, Dr. Geissinger, D.D. Dupree, L.P. Graul and Fred Hensel.

(The continuation of this story in the next blog entry).

History of Grove City Schools – Part 1

(The following was written by Faye White Moreland and is reprinted from “Reflections II”, a collection of local stories available at the Grove City Welcome Center and Museum. Any opinions made in the article are from the author.)

In 1851-1852 a Commission laid out and platted lands into lots of what would be Grove City. The plat contained 78 lots. Four of them now make up the Park Street Elementary School site. The four lots are numbered 30 through 33 inclusively. They lie together on the north side of East Park Street. Lot No. 30 lies along Third Street and Lot No. 33 along Arbutus Avenue.

The first lot purchased for the first school house was Lot No. 32. See Deed Book No. 74, page 475, in the Franklin County Recorder’s Office. It was deeded to the Board of Education of Jackson Township, by the owner William Foster Breck and his wife Elizabeth Cambel Breck May 2nd, 1862. The recorded deed recites, “The above-named lot conveyed to the Board of Education is in compliance to an agreement made in the year of 1853.” The cost of the lot as written in the deed was 1 cent. The first school was equipped with rough slab benches supported at either end by a pair of hickory pins inserted in sugar holes and, for that time, was complete with modern “conveniences”. Part of this one room building was later used in two residences on Park Street and Arbutus Avenue.

The first teacher in the first school house in Grove City was a gentleman by the name of Mr. Canfield. The second was Miss “Teeny” Yates who taught one summer. The third was Mrs. young, maiden name Viets, who in the Autumn of 1853, though but a girl of 18, traveled from Oberlin to Grove City to teach our school. She began teaching November 22nd, 1853. Eighty pupils entered, her average daily attendance was 60 pupils. Other teachers in this early school where Professors Hannum, Stonestreet, and William Sibray.

Among those who took a prominent part in securing this school were William Foster Breck, Hugh Grant, Jr., George Weygandt, Daniel Smith, Jonathan Gantz and Joseph Pense.

It is interesting to note here that Grove City Road (also known as Dutch Pike) extended northeastwardly and in alignment with and connecting with a county road now known as Stringtown Road. This extended connecting road was discontinued when the plat of 78 lots was laid out. Moreover, it laid diagonally in the location where the schoolhouse was later built.

(The continuation of this story in the next blog entry).

Grove City’s First Fire Wagon

(The following was written by Huldah Witteman Rader and is reprinted from “Reflections II”, a collection of local stories available at the Grove City Welcome Center and Museum. Any opinions made in the article are from the author.)

My father, Henry Whitman, owned one of the first automobiles in Grove City. This was about the year 1911. The automobile was an E.M.S. Grove City had a fire wagon that had two wheels and a hose but no engine. When there was a fire they had to get someone to pull the wagon.

There was a big fire in Harrisburg and they needed help to fight the fire, so they called Henry. They asked him if he would pull the fire wagon with his automobile. He responded to the call, hitched the wagon to his car and headed south toward Harrisburg. He said the wagon swayed back and forth across the road all the way to Harrisburg. When they arrived, they tried but couldn’t save the building, but they gave it a good try.