Land travel was slow, seldom over 10 miles a day, often half that. It was considered that the children would easily keep up, walking nearby, and in the process find much to keep themselves entertained. (Nowhere like todays problems taking children in a long automobile trip.) The team of horses might travel a little faster, but long distance was with the ox team, which traveled even slower than a walk, but could keep going, with less food, long after the horses would quit. The normal trip took days and often months.
There was considerable travel and communication among kin in distant communities. People who had to "go back home" for any reason, hand carried messages from all the neighbors, to their different families and friends. A "letter" from home was normal - at least once or twice a year, even though home was in eastern Pennsylvania, and the family might live in Ohio, Indiana, Illinois or even Iowa. A "letter" normally consisted of a single sheet of paper, written on both sides, except for that part which, after folding, would carry the address, like an envelope. Paper was not cheap or readily available, and the "letter" still existant is oftimes very interesting.
These roads I have personally traveled, some of them in one solid stretch, and on occasion, missing some sections.
Boone Family and the Brethren
e have very little that directly connects the Brethren with Daniel Boone and the Boone Family, but we have a number of circumstantial facts that do make a direct connection. I am not going to include much of the Quaker origins of Squire Boone Sr, although that does include influencing considerations. I am well aware that the Baptists claim the family –but that is one of the problems, that I will address.
In 1731, Squire Boone Sr (wife Sarah Morgan –welsh background) moved to the Schuylkill River, the Oley Valley on Owatin Run. This became the Exeter Quaker Meeting, about 10 miles upstream from Manatawny or Pottstown (Coventry Church). Thiis was near the Oley Church. In 1842, the daughter, Sarah, married a “worldling”, the german John Wilcoxin, then in 1747 the eldest son, Israel, also married outside the Quaker Meeting –and the family was expelled. They no longer would connect with the
About 1749 Sqsuire and family began their move to the frontier. Records say that he stopped in Maryland on his way south (at Boonesboro), in Middletown Valley (a major Brethren community) and waited for his sons, George and Squire Jr, to return from Brother’s Valley (a very early Brethren community in Bedford Co -now Somerset Co PA). Austin Cooper partially confirms this: he found in the Stoney Creek Clerk’s Records Book –that George Boone was advanced to the ministry there in 1770. He moved to Linnville Creek in Virginia for a couple years, near kin.
By late 1751, Squire Boone Sr moved to the Yadkin River in North Carolina. He lived at the Dutchman’s Creek Settlement, at the “Forks of the Yadkin”, about 20 miles north of Salisbury. Here he obtained several square miles of land, which were portioned out to his children as they married. The Forks of the Yadkin was one of the main Brethren communities in the colonial Carolinas.
The famous Daniel Boone, son of Squire Boone Sr, returned from being a waggoner in the army at Braddock’s Defeat near Pittsburg in 1755. He killed his first Indian on this return. “The first of only 3 Indians that he ever killed” he has said. The next year he married 17 year old Rebecca Bryan. They lived most of the next 10 years in the Bryan Settlement on Sugartree Creek about 2 miles east of Farmington NC.
In 1767 Daniel and his brother, Squire Boone, first penetrated into Kentucky on a fur trapping expedition. They spent the winter there, trapped by a snowstorm, and did much exploration that would be central to their emigration to Kentucky a few years later.
In 1775, Daniel and Squire Boone founded the town of Boonesborough. This was under the leadership of James Henderson of the Transilvania Company. They cut the famous Wilderness Road –leading to this new settlement on the Kentucky River, named Boonesborough. Both George Boone and Squire Boone Jr were nearby, they established the fort at Boone Station downstream on the Kentucky River, now at the east edge of Lexington KY. Austin Cooper claims that Squire Boone Jr was put in the ministry by Elder John Hendricks one of the Brethren Elders at Dutchman’s Creek, who was central in the Pietist Eternal Restoration [Universalist] movement [possibly even the “John H” of the 1796 Annual Meeting Minutes ban that lost the Brethren churches of the Carolinas] and moved to the Drake’s Creek congregation south of Bowling Green KY). The Baptists claim Squire Boone Jr as the first Baptist minister in Kentucky and Indiana. George Boone is listed as an early minister of the Tate’s Creek Baptist Church, southeast of Lexington, just below the site of Boone Station. In his last days, George Boone is reported to have moved to the Indiana hills along the Ohio River, just west of Louisville, and lived as a Pietist Solitary (in the tradition of the Ephrata Cloisters PA).
The Annual Meeting Elders placed these Frontier Brethren in “Avoidance” in 1826. As a result, these Brethren went several directions. While the “Brethren Association”, including Beech Creek, primarily went with the Great Revival under the leadership of Alexander Campbell, and became a major part of the formation of the Disciples of Christ, Christian Church; many of them were Baptist (this was before we became the “German Baptists”) and they then took associated with Regular Baptists, who were nearby. This is an explanation for the connection made by the Baptists to the ministry of Squire Boone Jr. While the Regular Baptists came into Kentucky (and Carolina) early, they were at least a decade later than the Baptist Brethren or Dunkers, but early records do not make the distinction, especially since so many of the Baptist Brethren made association with the Regular Baptists after the ban by the Annual Meeting Elders.
In 1779 Squire Boone Jr led a migration west to Shelby Co KY, near Shelbyville, northeast of Louisville. While the Indians drove them out temporarily, after they returned this is the area of the Beech Creek Brethren Church. Squire moved again, to Louisville. In his day, this was called “The Falls”. The Ohio River drops here at total of 24 feet in 4 miles. (Squire Jr’s fortified cabin, called “Fort Boone”, was on Main Street, between 8th and 9th streets, facing the river. It is intended to become the site of a memorial park.) In typical Brethren fashion, services were held in his home and this is recorded as one of the first churches in the Louisville area. Most of those who migrated by flatboat down the Ohio River did not try to “run the falls”. Some of them stopped above Louisville, at Limestone (Maysville KY), or across from Cincinnati in Campbell Co, or went up the Kentucky River. Many of those who came on to The Falls, stopped above Louisville. The Beech Creek Church was one of these Brethren settlements northeast of Louisville.
In 1802, Squire Boone Jr led another migration. This time he went from “The Falls” to Harrison Co IN, just west of Louisville, across the River. (Its county seat, Corydon, was the first Capitol of the State of Indiana.) He had a grist mill in Grassy Valley, 6 miles from the Ohio River and south of Corydon. Squire Boone Cave is there, where Squire is buried (originally inside the cave). The Old Goshen Baptist Church building was built by the Boone family in 1813. (Could this be the first Brethren Church in Indiana?) This is the same area where George Boone stayed as a Pietist Solitary before he died. There was a named Dunker church, Bethel, north of Corydon, near Bradford, on the Indian Trail from Louisville (New Albany) to Ft Vincennes.
What about Daniel? His wife was Sarah Morgan. Tradition says that her father was a Quaker who became a Brethren deacon. Two of his sons became ministers in the Baptist Church (this was at the time the ban of Avoidance was placed on the Frontier Brethren churches in Kentucky). His name is on the membership list of a small Baptist Church at Boone NC (at the pass through the Blue Ridge Mountains on US421 –between Wilkes and Ashe Cos). This was an area to which Daniel and his family moved in 1766. The only problem (as stated previously) was that the Baptist Brethren lived in that area, and in Daniel’s day, the Regular (English) Baptists had not arrived in the upland areas of North Carolina (except as they point to his name on their church roll). This could be one of the Brethren congregations lost in the 1796 ban against the Carolina churches, we don’t have enough information. After the Revolution Daniel worked as a surveyor, and laid claim to considerable tracts of land in eastern Kentucky. Kentucky belonged to Virginia, and in its attempts to allocate the lands there, the original settlers lost to the baron families of Virginia. Daniel lost all these lands in Kentucky, and moved to Kanawha Co Virginia –now West Virginia –on the Kanawha Trace (a Brethren migration route). About 1796, Daniel returned to Kaintuck, to the area where the Brethren had one of their largest churches, the Hinkston Creek Church. This was north of Boonesboro, just north of Mt Sterling Ky, on the settler road from Boonesboro to Limestone (Maysville) on the Ohio River.
In 1799, Daniel moved to St Charles Co west of St Louis Missouri, on the Missouri River, to join his son Daniel Morgan Boone. This is only a few miles from a Brethren settlement at Perrique, in St Charles Co above St Louis, on the Mississippi River. These were Brethren from Drakes Creek, in western Kentucky near Bowling Green.
No, we have very little that directly connects the Brethren with Daniel Boone and the Boone Family, but we have these circumstantial facts that do make a direct connection. I have listed these, and there seems to be enough connection that they could easily have been members of the Brethren Church – including Daniel Boone.
he first State Road in Ohio, 1807, the Xenia State Road was the official recognition by the new State of Ohio of the old Shawnee Indian Road from British Fort Detroit to Bullskin Landing on the Ohio River, through the major Shawnee center, Old Chillicothe (Oldtown, at Xenia). It was long called the Old Xenia Road. It was down this road in 1778, that Daniel Boone ran the gauntlet at Old Chillicothe, and didn't stop running - clear to the Ohio River, outrunning the pursuing Shawnees. Down this road had come raiding armies of British Regulars and Indian allies as they attempted to destroy the Kentucky settlements. Up this road had gone the Kentucky militia when they attacked the Indians at Springfield in retaliation. In these new lands on the Northwest frontier, the Bullskin Road was a major thoroughfare.
Bullskin Creek is flooded by the Ohio River for half a mile back from the River, a wide valley opening. It was the first major landing for Ohio River flatboats above Fort Washington (Cincinnati). Here the flatboat was protected, off the river, with easy unloading facilities. This settlement in Clermont County is called Utopia. The Brethren settled on the Bullskin about 1800. (Miller, Moyer, Metzgar, Rohrer, Hoover, Houser; the old Olive Branch Church. It converted en-mass to Church of Christ in the New Light Revival of 1830's.) Being farmers, they lived mostly on the level lands above the high riverbank hills, at the head of Bullskin Creek.
The Road went north through Felicity and Bethel, now Ohio 133, and crossed the East Fork of the Little Miami at Williamsburg. It crossed Stonelick Creek at Edenton (just 2 miles from the Stonelick Church). A stone marker at the east edge of Edenton is on the old Road as it goes cross-country to Clarksburg. A line of old trees shows part of the route. From Clarksburg it followed old Ohio 380 to Xenia, going through New Burlington, now submerged below the lake at Caesar's Creek State Park. It was called the Bullskin Road.
From Xenia north to Detroit, it is U.S. 68, the Detroit Road. It goes to Yellow Spring, where it leaves the Little Miami. Then to Springfield, where it follows the Mad River of the Great Miami to Urbana. Other cities on the Road are Bellefontaine, Kenton, Findlay, Bowling Green, Toledo. From Cygnet, north of Findlay, it becomes Ohio 25 and from Toledo to Detroit it is U.S. 24.
Earliest records show another old Indian path, that connected to the Bullskin Road (Ohio 133), just north of Williamsburg (on Ohio 276). Just before Owensville it turned north to the Ford on the Great Miami River, Franklin Ohio, then headed north along the Great Miami and Stillwater rivers, where many of the early Brethren settled on the west side of Dayton.
The earliest Brethren settlement in Ohio was in Clermont County, the Obannon Church, near Goshen (1795). The Olive Branch Church near Bullskin Landing soon followed (1800). But this was heavy clay soil, and many decided to move north to the good farmland on the Great Miami River.
Frederick Weaver (in whose home the Obannon Church first met), Gabriel Kerns, and David and Daniel Miller lived in the western part of the Obannon Church area, near Manila Road, which goes southeast from Goshen. Just above Gabriel Kerns' farm is Linton Road, which was the OLD route before Manila road was built, going through Goshen past the Cemetery, meeting the Murdoch/Lebanon Road above town. It now stops at the Cemetery.
The Road went north from Goshen to those families of the Obannon Church (the Millers at Murdock and Bowmans unknown) who lived in Warren County. At Murdock it went on north to Lebanon (Ohio 48). Then an angling Indian path was followed (Ohio 123) to the ford over the Great Miami at Franklin. This put them on the west side of the River, where Elder Jacob Miller lived on Bear Creek (1800).
The exact route north, on the west side of the Great Miami, is not known. There are a couple of early references (1830's) to an old River Road on the banks of the Great Miami. Probabilities are that it followed the Soldier's Home Road along the River and then went nearly strait north on the Gettysburg Road to the Wolf Creek Road, the Salem Road and the Covington Road (Stillwater River).
The John Aukerman family likely used this road to the Great Miami River Ford, then followed what became the extension of the Kanawha Trace, along the Twin Creek, into Preble County, Ohio. The John Bowman family likely used this route for their migration from the Obannon to Montgomery County, about 1800. David Miller left about 1802, and already others of the Obannon Brethren had moved north. These families seem to have been displaced from their Hamilton County homesteads (now Clermont and Warren) when the government gave these lands to the Virginia Military District and Ohio land grants were given as bounties to Revolutionary Veterans in lieu of their pay. Local settlers, like the Aukermans and Bowmans, could not purchase their homesteads and had to move.
Most of the earliest Brethren settlers to Ohio seem to have stopped among the Brethren already at Obannon / Stonelick, before they found lands north (the Land Office was in Cincinnati, a days walk away), then followed one or the other of the Indian Roads north. Many Brethren moved up the Bullskin Trace to the east side of Dayton, to Green and Clark Counties, Ohio, to the old Beaver Creek and Donnels Creek Church areas. Other Brethren crossed the ford on the Great Miami, and settled in the fertile lands west of the River, the Lower Miami Church, the Bear Creek Church, the Stillwater Church.
he early Brethren moved north on the Susquehanna River into Northumberland County, Pennsylvania near or soon after the time of the Revolutionary War. There was a trace along the River, there were also a couple traces from the Tulpehocken and from Reading across the ridge into the Shamokin Valley. In 1800, the King opened up settlement in Upper Canada (now Ontario). The land was available cheap, in "Lots" of 200 acres, by Concessions of 35 lots, in each of a number of townships and counties. There was considerable Mennonite, Brethren and River Brethren migration to Lincoln County (between Lake Erie and Lake Ontario -next to the Niagara Falls); Vaughan township, York County (north-west of Toronto); and near Kitchener. Many Brethren from Brother's Valley (Somerset County), Northumberland County (Shamokin, West Branch and Lycoming Valleys) and Southern Pennsylvania areas went up. In the east, there are two known mainly parallel roads, used to go to Canada.
[Mennonite Quarterly Review, January 1929]
a notebook by Joseph Bowman of Waterloo Ontario
Description of the road from Reading to Waterloo Township,
Halton County, Upper Canada. Joseph Bowman, started September
the 4th, 1817, and arrived in Waterloo, October the 2nd 1817.
From Reading to: miles (located)
Kergerstown .................... 10 (?near Hamburg PA)
Orwigsburg .................... 11 (east of Pottsville)
Sunbury ....................... 47
Northumberland ................ 2
Milltown ...................... 12 (Milton PA)
Bensborough ................... 14 (?Muncy PA)
Muncy Creek ................... 2
Williamsport .................. 12
Heur's tavern ................. 17 (?Roaring Branch PA)
Blockhouse .................... 14 (?Covington PA)
Peters Camp ................... 12 (?Tioga PA)
Widow Berry ................... 18 (?Presho NY)
Addam Hart .................... 6 (?Gang Mills NY)
Thomas Mayberry ............... 20 (Bath NY)
Robert Patterson .............. 6 (?Avoca NY)
Mulhollans tavern ............. 20 (Danville NY)
Dreisbachs tavern ............. 3 (Sparta NY)
Bigtree ....................... 15 (Geneseo NY)
Genasee River ................. 7 (Avon NY)
Calladony Town ................ 7 (Caladonia NY)
Davis' tavern ................. 4
Leroyl ........................ 3 (Le Roy NY)
Battavia ...................... 11 (Batavia NY
Richardson's tavern ........... 11 (?Pembroke NY)
Hersy's tavern ................ 15 (Harris Hill NY)
Buffalo ....................... 14
Blackrock ferry ............... 2
John Boyer .................... 10 (?Black Creek ONT)
Falls ......................... 8
Jacob Myer .................... 20 (Jordan ONT)
Carpenter's tavern ............ 13 (?Stoney Creek ONT)
Dundass ....................... 18 (edge of Hamilton)
John Erb's Mill (Preston) ...... 23 (Preston ONT)
Miles ................ 429
The western road went from Reading to Sunbury (Pennsylvania 61), followed the West Branch of the Susquehanna (Pennsylvania 405/I took I-180), then up the Lycoming Creek from Williamsport to Roaring Branch (U.S. 15/PA 14), and across the mountains to Blossburg (mountain road to Ogdensburg, good), to Tioga, to Corning, New York (U.S. 15). This road was used as early as 1798.
In New York, the west route followed the wide valley of the Chemung River, going northwest (New York 17/I-390) to Danville where they turned north (New York 63) to "Big Tree" or Geneseo, New York (Big Tree -Ken de wa- was chief of the Indian Village there, hence the original name).
From Geneseo, New York it followed the Gennesee River (New York 39) to Avon, where it crossed on the Iroquois Trail, going to Caladonia (New York 5), to Batavia, to Buffalo, New York. There they ferried the Niagara River above the Falls. Black Rock was very close to the present Peace Bridge from Buffalo, New York to Fort Erie, Ontario. "Hersy's tavern" is Harris Tavern, the oldest building in Erie County, at Harris Hill on, New York 5, just at the edge of modern Buffalo.
West of there, above the Escarpment (the cause of the Falls) was a settlement of the Brethren and River Brethren. For those going on, the road went along the River to the Niagara Falls.
Just above the Falls, at the Chippawa River (Battle, 1812), the British Portage, Portage Road, turned inland (now Main Street, Niagara Falls, Ontario) going to Queenston, on the Niagara River below the Escarpment. At Ferry Street, a road, Lundy's Lane, turned west (Bloody Battle in the War of 1812). Later a branch of the road, called Beaver Dam Road, goes to the old Settlers Road, joining it somewhere near Jordan, Ontario, (well, it doesn't go clear through any more -the Welland Canal stops it near Thorold, just south of St. Catherines).
The Settler's Road went west along the base of the Escarpment. It is Highway 81 from St. Catherines through Jordan ("20 Mile"), Vineland, Beamsville, to Grimsby ("40 Mile"). From there it becomes Highway 8 to Stoney Creek and is Queenston Street through Hamilton. Elder Jacob Moyer (Mennonite) lived on the 20 Mile Creek, between Jordan and Vineland. There may have been a Brethren settlement at Grimsby, but I didn't find their museum open, to research.
Those going to Kitchener followed Highway 8 directly from Hamilton, through Dundas, Cambridge, Preston, Kitchner to Waterloo. For those going to Vaughan, they followed the lake shore to beyond Mississauga and headed north on the Royal York Road and Jane Street. Vaughan township was mentioned as 20 miles from the docks at Toronto, which is a considerable distance by horse.
Joseph Bowman started from Waterloo, February the 9th, 1819,
and arrived in Reading, February the 27th 1819.
From John Erb's Mill to
Jacob Myer .................... 60 (Jordan ONT)
Cadareenstown (St Cathrines) ... 8 (St Catherines ONT)
Queenstown .................... 12 (Queenston ONT)
Morehous's tavern ............. 25 (Hartland NY)
Olarged Creek ................. 13 (Oak Orchard Creek)
`Tillanson's tavern ............ 28 (?Parma's Corners NY)
Rochester ..................... 11
Pitsford ...................... 8
Cannandaigua .................. 21
Benyang (Penn Yang) ........... 22 (Penn Yan NY)
Head of Sennaka Lake .......... 30 (Watkins Glen NY)
Coryell's tavern .............. 7 (?Montour Falls NY)
New Town ...................... 15 (Elmira NY)
Lowman's tavern ............... 7 (Lowman NY)
Tioga point ................... 14 (Greens Landing PA)
Shaw's tavern ................. 6 (?Ulster PA)
Brown's tavern ................ 27 (Browntown -Wyalusing)
Smith's Ferry ................. 30 (?Eatonville PA)
Wilksberry .................... 20 (Wilkes-Barre PA)
Rack's tavern ................. 17
Mirwein's tavern .............. 16
Dreisbach's Mill .............. 6
Lehigh Water Gap .............. 12 (?Palmerton PA)
Richard's Tavern .............. 8
Kutstown ...................... 6 (Kutztown PA)
Reading ....................... 17
Miles ............... 458
Spending Money ........... $22.53
Lets go south from Waterloo/Kitchner Ontario ---Highway 8
Joseph Bowman went clear through on the old Settlers road (Highway 8/ Highway 81) to Elder Jacob Moyer at Jordan, and continued on to St. Catherines, Ontario. Here Highway 81 continues on the Queenston, Ontario, as Queenston Street, then York Road on to Queenston. At Queenston it come to the bluff at the Niagara River, just at the foot of the Escarpment where the U.S. Army was defeated by British General Brock, in the War of 1812. Just south on Front Street (at Dunfries Street) was a twisting lane down to the "Sand Beach" landing on the River. Here was the ferry to Lewistown in New York. The South Landing Inn on Front Street was built near that time.
From Lewistown, New York, the Settlers Road followed the Ridge Road to Rochester, New York. This was a sandy ridge several miles back from Lake Ontario, said to be the Archaic Beach of the Prehistoric "Lake Iroquois". The ferry landing was at Center Street, which is the end of the Ridge Road at the Niagara River. The old Ridge Road is, New York 104 from Lewistown going east. Samuel Morehouse built a "hotel" at Hartland Corners in 1813. This is now the west part of the town of Hartland, in Niagara County, New York.
Local Historians seemed to think that German speaking Joseph Bowman misunderstood the English name of "Oak Orchard Creek", because it was named for an Orchard of Oak trees at its mouth (Point Breeze) on the bay on Lake Ontario. The Ridge Road crosses Oak Orchard Creek at "Oak Orchard on the Ridge", just northeast of Medina, New York. I was unable to locate any records to "Tillianson's Tavern" but distances on, New York 104 placed it just about, New York 259, or Parma's Crossing.
From Rochester, New York, the route would likely have followed, Pennsylvania 64 to Pittsford and angled down to the Iroqouis Castle of Canandaigua on the mouth of Lake Canandaigua (Finger Lakes area). From there, New York 147 goes south and east to Penn Yan (for early settlers from Pennsylvania and Yankee Connecticut) (mouth of Keuka Lake), then 14A and 14 to Watkins Glen at the head of Seneca Lake. Coryell's tavern was likely at the "Montour Falls" on the river feeding into the Lake. They then followed over the Indian Trail to the headwaters of the Susquehanna River at Horseheads (where General Sullivan had to kill his horse pack team, as he lead the army in its raid against the Iroqouis Indians in 1762).
Elmira, New York, was originally named Newtown, the name being changed in 1828. The Indian Trail followed down the Susquehanna River as far as Wilkes Barre. Tioga Point is a historical site at Greens Landing, just south of Athens, Pennsylvania. From Wilkes Barre, Joseph crossed over to the Lehigh River, passing through the Narrows the gap in the Mountain there (Lehigh Gorge), and on toward Allentown, Pennsylvania. Instead, he turned west to Kutztown and on to Reading.
This is a main Iroquois Indian Trail that followed this route, from Canada all the way down to the Susquehanna River Valley (noted by an earliest settler, Jemima Wilkinson).
(I followed the western route, plotting the locations: 1998. I traced the upper, New York and Canada route last week, 1999, and hope to drive the eastern route this summer!)
ust above the bridge over the Whitewater River at Yankeetown, south in Richmond, Indiana, is a hard packed ford some 6 ft. wide. The river bottom is soft and mucky on either side, but here the bottom is packed hard from its first use by buffalo, or the American Bison, that used to roam this woodlands, then to its use by the Indians and the "Indian Road" that is traced across the county. Early deeds identify this as "the Indian Road from Muncytown to Ft. Hamilton". The route across Union County, Indiana, has been plotted from surveyor records on early deeds and collected by former county surveyor and Four Mile Church deacon, Albert Brown. Some of the physical route has been identified by farmers, due to the improvement of the Indian trail by early settlers, who widened it to a wagon road and filled the low spots with stones and gravel. Local farmers, when plowing, suddenly find stones in their clayloam fields. The traced route started at Rossville, at Hamilton Ohio, directly acrossed the Great Miami River from old Fort Hamilton or the bridge over the river there. It is picked up west of Darrtown where it passed Chaw Raw Hill along the Four Mile Creek banks. [Chaw Raw Hill - it's named that because one early migrant father and sons decided to camp on top of the hill, along the Indian Path. They had killed a turkey for their meal, but just as they were getting ready to cook it -they discovered a group of Indian warriors coming down the trail. They dare not start a fire -they "chawed the Turkey -Raw!"]
The old road there has been washed away as the creek has shifted its banks. Somewhere north the old road crossed the creek and went past what became the town of Oxford, Ohio. Brown Road going north out of Oxford to the Hueston Woods State Park seems to be the old Indian Road. In the Park, the Indian Road would have started down the drive to the Sugar Camp, but where the drive turns right, the access road going ahead to the beach area follows an old road shown on early maps. The Indian Road is identified as about 1/2 mile from the juncture of the Middle and Little Four Mile Creeks, about where the circle drive crosses the Little Four Mile, where the College Corner Road enters at Park Headquarters. The boat storage there could be the site of the old trading post and the Indian village was possibly in the open grounds by the office buildings. A long winding gully at the south-east corner of the campgrounds is probably the Road climbing out of the Four Mile creekbed where the settlers could pull their wagons. The Indian Road passed around the Indian Mound, at the far west end of the campgrounds on the ridge above the Little Four Mile.
On the Eaton Pike, out of College Corner, just south of the Buck Paxton Road, there used to be a residence building sitting back of the current house. It faced southwest on an angle, just above the decline into the ravine there. This would be where the Indian Road crossed the ravine.
On the State Line Road, where the Union County Indiana, survey shows the Indian Road, an old pair of foundation sites were remembered, again on an angle to the world, in back of the present barnlot. Just west of this, on the back of the Hartman farm, is an old crossing over Little Four Mile Creek, still used to get to the fields east of the creek. This was originally the Christian Witter Farm and the Witter cemetary is on the bank of the Four Mile. Mrs. Hartman is a Witter. The Indian Road continued north-west and crossed first the Nine Mile Road then Indiana 44 south and west of the corner. It continued more northward till it crossed Hannas Creek a little south of the Hanna's Creek Church. Then turned nearly due west across Union County. South-west of Clifton it angled northward to the Buffalo Ford. The road then seems to have angled north -west, to the old Universalist town of Philomet, and on through Dublin toward Hagarstown, Indiana.
Just north of the Nettle Creek Church at Hagerstown, is the old Stout Farm. In the early years of this century, Indians walked between the house and barn of that farm, on what they claimed was their old pathway. The scout-camp at Muncie, Indiana (old Muncytown) tells Indian lore about the old Indian Path to Richmond. The road actually passed south and west of Richmond. From Hagerstown, the Indian Road would have followed on or close to the Buck Creek Road, to Mt. Pleasant onto U.S. 35, south of Muncie. This would account for the Dunker settlement along it called the Buck Creek Church. The winding and twisting of this old country road could be the original winding and twisting of the Indian path as it wove along the higher ground around the giant forest trees, swamps and steep gullys.
The early migrants used an extension of this road from Muncie, Indiana, going northwest to Kokomo. One route went westward, to the Wildcat Creek which flowed into the Wabash River at Lafayette, Indiana. Most of the Brethren settlers stopped along it, few going farther than Flora, Indiana. The other went north, through Kokomo to Peru, Indiana. This triangle along the Wabash River was a major settlement area in western Indiana during the early 1830s for the Four Mile families and their kin and neighbors in Preble and Montgomery Counties, Ohio.
From the settlements here, some of the Brethren went north to Michigan Territory, the LaPorte/South Bend Indiana area [although the earliest settlers there used the Wayne Trace (General Mad Anthony Wayne's Army Road of 1794) to the town of Ft Wayne, then followed an Indian Trail, now U.S. 33, to Goshen, Elkhart, and South Bend, Indiana]. Others from here moved west into Illinois territory, settling along the Illinois River. Then in 1855, two major groups moved to Iowa.
r. Argus Ogborn was a Quaker historian in Richmond, Indiana. He gave me a copy of his copy of the Bill of the Road, which he had found in a collection (unspecified) some years ago. He saw it for what it was, the mile by mile progress a Quaker settler would walk with team and wagon to travel to Richmond, but I recognized many of the named places in the Way Bill from travel, residency and research in these regions. From this I drew up and gave him a map tracing the path of the Trace. In researching families on this trace for my book on the Four Mile Church, I recognized that the Brethren used this as a major path from Virginia to Ohio. I had frequently asked myself a question about the route of the Dunkers in Virginia to Ohio and the West, since I had early found that most of them did not use Daniel Boone's Wilderness Road. (The Flat Creek Mission, Church of the Brethren, is right on the Old Warriors Path - Goose Creek, mouth of Mudlick, near Manchester, Kentucky, my parents lived there at the mission, Mudlick Station, head of Mudlick. I occasionally visited there, and I followed the path and story of Daniel Boone and the early Dunkers in the Kaintuck lands.) Only a few of the Carolina Brethren who followed the Wilderness Road into Kentucky, came up into Ohio. I've followed Forbes' Road and Braddock's Road in Pennsylvania, when I pastored at Beaver Dam (Maryland) and with my brother, who still pastors in Western Pennsylvania. Maryland and Pennsylvania Brethren, including some in the upper part of the Valley, would have used those routes and come down the Ohio on flatboats. But many early Dunkers lived much farther south in the Valley, and there was a major early settlement of the Brethren below Roanoke, on the front of the Blue Ridge in Franklin and Floyd Counties, the old Carolina Road, (Elder Jacob Miller families and neighbors) who came from there to western Ohio. The Kanawha Trace was their route. Virginia Dunker Family names are found along it.
The Kanawha Trace Bill of the Road, or Waybill, begins in the north central part of North Carolina where the Moravian Brethren, Friends (or Quakers) and German Baptist Brethren (Dunkers, Church of the Brethren) had major settlements. Early Dunker Churches were along the Yadkin River starting in Wilkes County, going east to Winston Salem, then south through Salisbury, this was the area from which Daniel Boone came.
The Waybill that we have, begins at New Garden Friends Church on the Northwest side of Greensboro, near Guilliford Battlefield. Clemmons was likely at Guilford, a small town on North Carolina 66. By distance, Beesons would be the town of Colfax; and Kernersville, east of Winston Salem, is Kerners. Continuing on North Carolina 66 to U.S. 52, Bittings would likely be at Stanleyville or Rural Hall, Gordings would be at Pilot Mountain, and Unthanks at Mount Airy. The old road goes directly north from Mt Airy. Wards Gap in the Blue Ridge Mountains is about 5 miles east of Fancy Gap (used by modern US 52). From Wards Gap, Road's Fork may be near modern Hillsville on top of the ridge, where US52 and Virginia 100 each continue their own route down into the New River Valley. The Trace followed Virginia 100 down Little Reed Island Creek through Popular Camp Mountain. It crosses Reed Island River at Patterson and then the New River (Fugat's Ferry, now a bridge). Virginia 100 does not cross Draper's Mountain to Pulaski, and John Feeley's would be at McAdam or possibly Draper. Crossing Walker Mountain, Virginia 100 comes to Poplar Hill, which would be Shannon's and comes back to the New River, which has taken a big loop, at Pearisburg, old Giles Court House, and U.S. 460. Peter's Ferry could be located at Narrows, where they could recross the New River. (It must be remembered that in these early days, the lack of bridges in the frontier areas meant that obstacles that we now ignor drastically effected travel patterns. A Traveler sometimes went longer, or worse, routes, because there was no way they could cross a River. This is true of the routes here, and across West Virginia.)
Remember, also, that in those days Virginia went clear to the Ohio River. Across West Virginia, the Kanawha Trace, by tradition, followed the Shawnee Indian War Path close to the New or Kanawha River. Peterstown is just in West Virginia at U.S. 219 and West Virginia 12. Christian Peter's home would have been out of Peterstown on West Virginia 12. There Bozoo Road goes left and down into the old river bottom, a shorter route than West Virginia 12. Bluestone Lake floods this area, but the Indian River enters the New below Indian Mills, coming down the valley from the Northeast. The Blue Stone River comes up the valley from the Southwest about 15 miles down stream and Pack's ferry would have been out in the lake, between them (before Wolf Creek Mountain). Unless there was a bottom land route (now flooded), the mountains push in close to the New River and the Trace would have followed a trail up to Pipe Stem, and followed the Pipestem Creek down to the Blue Stone River crossing. Following up another trail out of the Blue Stone, Pack's could possibly be at Nimitz and Jumping Branch, where another old road (West Virginia 3) goes to Shady Spring. There modern U.S. 19 shows sections of an old road near it. U.S. 19 goes to Beckley, Mount Hope and Glen Jean (with Harvey just beyond) and on to Fayetteville on the downriver side of the New River Gorge. This is possibly "Road's Fork", where the Trace did not try to recross the New River, but took West Virginia 16, to Beckwith where it took the very rugged Falls Creek Road over Cotton Hill. The creek and trail come out at the Falls of the New River, now Kanawha Falls (where the Kanawha River Dam now is). The Gauley River enters the New River at Gauley Bridge above the Dam, and the River changed, it is larger, and has a more constant flow. The valley widens. It is now called the Kanawha. Here below the falls, early settlers built flat boats and floated down the River to Point Pleasant, then down the Ohio to Kaintuck or Cincinnati.
The Trace followed a country road along the south bank of the Kanawha River. It is pressed closely by high rugged mountains, the only level areas are where mountain streams enter the river. A couple of these have become towns, Deep Water, Eagle. Benjamin Morris probably lived where Montgomery is, where West Virginia 61 comes down off the mountain. There is a better roadway, and towns of Crown Hill and Cabin Creek. At Chelyan the West Virginia Turnpike and U.S. 119 come down to the River. Leonard Morris had a fortified log house ("fort") at Marmet, on the south side of the River just above Charleston, where the Toney's and others fled during the Indian raids of 1794. Venables would have been in the eastern area of South Charleston called Kanawha City, where there used to be a second branch of the Kanawha River by that name. Cobb's would also be in South Charleston near Vandalia. The Coal River enters the Kanawha at St. Albans, where U.S. 35 comes in from downstream and Ohio. There is quite a ridge, actually a mountain, between the two nearly parallel rivers for many miles. Hanley's, M'Collister's and Grice's would have been stops on the lower river before crossing to Gallipolis Ohio. The Trace followed the bank of the Kanawha River clear to the Ohio, then down the bank of the Ohio to across from Gallipolis, because of high ridges along both rivers. At Gallipolis, they would have rafted over the Ohio, landing at the old town dock area, today's City Park.
An alternate route, known to be used by the Indians and some settlers, followed Moss Creek out of Beckley, one of the headwaters of the Coal River. It then followed the north bank of the Coal River through Blooming Rose to St. Albans, where Coal River empties into the Kanawha; part of this is now West Virginia 3.
At Gallipolis, the Kanawha Trace followed Gen. Lewis' Army Road to Chillicothe (after the Battle of Point Pleasant, 1774, he pushed the Indians back to their main city, building a road for his cannon, now U.S. 35: remnants of Old 35, and likely the Trace, are seen in various places through the valleys either side of the new road). The Army Road, and the Trace, started in downtown Gallipolis. Old 35 goes out of Gallipolis north of the old city and goes along Chicamauga Creek inland almost to Mills before it crosses the creek. This probably was the original route. (The creek enters the Ohio River south of Gallipolis, but swings north behind most of the city before it turns inland. It is quite swampy. Chillicothe Road, a street in the south part of Gallipolis crosses the swamps with a bridge and goes west till it junctions with Ohio 588 going on to Rodney. Ohio 588 starts in Gallipolis at the city park and bridges the top end of the swamp.) At Rodney, the Jackson Road is Old 35. Crossing Raccoon Creek at Adamsville, Woods was certainly Wood's Mill. The Trace then went on to Rio Grande, where the Adamsville Road is north of U.S. 35, actually the back drive on Bob Evans farm. Judge Poor's (or Squire Poor) was at Winchester, south of 35 at Ohio 327. This is the original Old 35, or Gallipolis Pike, now called Dixon Run Road. Jackson is still a major Ohio town, the town and trace are both south of modern U.S. 35. Richmond is now called Richmond Dale, and is on a stretch of the old road north of modern U.S. 35. Kilgore's Ferry over the Scioto River is at the bridge on U.S. 35/50, north of the mouth of Paint Creek. The Trace angled into Chillicothe on Eastern Ave (Jackson or Gallipolis Road). It then turned up Hickory Street to Main Street, and went west past the State Capitol. Chillicothe was the first Capitol of the State of Ohio. It had been a major Shawnee Indian center and is still noted for its Hopewell Indian mounds (Mound City). There were early settlers with Dunker family names along this stretch of the Trace, but we have no record of churches.
Leaving Chillicothe, the Kanawha Trace followed the Zane Trace out of town on the Limestone Road (now Western Ave; Limestone was the original name for Maysville Kentucky, the destination of the Zane Trace). They went west along Paint Creek (U.S. 50). Elijah Johnson's would be north of Bourneville, and the Trace followed an old Indian trail that went west up a wide valley. The road is called Lower Twin, and goes to South Salem. From the Covered Bridge on Lower Twin, just west of So Salem, the Trace went north off the present road and kept to the highlands (going directly in front of Robt Smalley's house, which now sits far back a lane from the road) to Greenfield, where it forded Paint Creek on the rocky bottoms, just south of town (the old Fall Creek Church was farther south, west of Paint Creek on Fall Creek). From there, the Trace turned westward and crossed Rattlesnake Creek at Monroetown (East Monroe, on Ohio 28), to Leesburg (U.S. 62 and Ohio 28), and on west to Joel Willis', now Highland, where the old Lexington Church was just south of town. In Highland, the Trace turned north on Wilmington or Antioch Road. This is the same old winding Trace until it gets to Wilmington, where the Antioch Road met old 73, which turned west on the trace into town. Old 73 now deadends at the Airport, heading directly toward the control tower.
The Trace went westward from Wilmington to Waynesville, along Ohio 73. It crossed Todd Fork Creek and at Caesar's Creek State Park went north at the "Y," going through Harveysburg, where it wound down to Caesar's Creek (now under the reservoir). The Trace went to Corwin where it forded the Little Miami into Waynesville. Corwin is north of 73, the Trace separated at the Cemetary. It went up into the north part of Waynesville, and came back out on Ohio 73 on the west side of town. The Trace (and Ohio 73) continue on west to Springboro and Franklin along the present route (the Old Upper Springboro Pike to Waynesville coming into Franklin on 2nd Street). In the 1870's the ferry was replaced by a suspension bridge on 4th Street, later by the present Lion Bridge on 2nd Street.
At Franklin, the Trace forded the Great Miami River below the 6th Street RailRoad Bridge, then William Barkalow started a ferry at his house in 1804 (at the Tressel). The Trace went back north along the river and turned west, Ohio 123, past Rev Tapscott's house (in front of his Primitive Baptist Church), just east of the town of Carlisle. The Trace continues on from Carlisle, until it crossed Twin Creek, there it turns on Sugar Street to Sunsbury and stayed south of Germantown and Big Twin Creek. At the five points, it went ahead (to the right) on the Mudlick and Sigel Road to where Henry Moyer lived, and where it met the road going west out of Germantown (Ohio 725). The Trace continues along 725 to Gratis. Keep right at the Y into Gratis, and Ohio 122 is the old winding Trace angling northwest to Eaton, where St Clair's Fort still stood from the Indian Wars. From Eaton, U.S. 35 follows the Trace to Richmond, Indiana. Whitewater Meeting was founded 1809, in a log church at a cemetary that stood almost directly under the U.S. 27 overpass, just beyond the railroad tracks (200 feet west of the old brick church at North G street).
Danuel DuBois traced his route from Monmouth County new Jersey to Carlisle in his diary in 1804. From Chillicothe to Franklin his route matches those of the Waybill. He averaged 40 miles per day. This is the first known use of the Trace across the state.
Dunker settlement here was very early. Some of the children of Elder Jacob Miller from Franklin County Virginia, in the 1790's came up the Great Miami to Dayton, then by 1803, moved west to the state line. Philip and Anna (Miller) Lybrook followed the Trace in 1806, when he returned to Virginia and brought his wife and families of married children back to Indiana (Upper Four Mile Church). They came by wagon. From Eaton he came west on the Old Dayton Road (Dayton through Eaton and Boston, Indiana, to Conners Trading Post, 1803).
The Trace leaving Chillicothe was not in existance when the first Quaker into Ohio, Nathaniel Pope, settled Leesburg in 1802. He left Chillicothe on the old Indian Path to Old Chillicothe (now U.S. 35 to Xenia) along the North Fork of Paint Creek. At Col. Massie's settlement, Frankfort, Pope went southwest to Leesburg. The path of the Trace from Chillicothe to Leesburg was a shortend route from his settlement. The Trace was not in existance in 1802, it was used clear across the state by 1806. The Waybill was after 1809.
The Kanawha Trace is very important to the settlement of Southern Ohio. The Quakers and Dunkers, and many others from Southern Virginia and North Carolina, followed it as they came to Ohio Country. It was probably the most used land route for migration into Ohio in the years before the Old National Road (c1827).
Assistance on this study was given by several people living in communities along the route of the Trace. Especial thanks is to be given to Rev. Robert Roller, pastor of the Fraternity Church of the Brethen, Winston Salem, North Carolina; Stan Bumgardner, Historian, West Virginia Division of Culture and History, Charleston, West Virginia; and Harriet Foley, Franklin, Ohio. Parts of the route through Virginia and West Virginia were determined from known locations, using U.S. Topographical Maps.
The Kanawha Trace Way Bill
New Garden, Guilford County, North Carolina Bill of the Road to
Richmond, Indiana, Crossing the Blue Ridge at Ward's Gap, and
traveling the Kanhaway Route
Clemmons - - - - - 4 4 Peters' - - - - - - - 3 142
Beesons - - - - - 5 9 Mouth of Indian River- 7 149
Kerners - - - - - 3 12 Pack's ferry - - - - 10 159
Bitting's - - - - 17 26 Blue Stone River - - 5 164
Gording's - - - - 14 43 Pack's - - - - - - - 6 170
Unthank's - - - - 14 57 Hervey's - - - - - - 17 187
Perkin's - - - - - 4 61 Blake's - - - - - - - 6 193
Mankins' - - - - - 8 69 Road's fork - - - - - 16 209
(At Wards Gap) Cotton hill - - - - - 6 215
Cornelius' - - - - 5 74 (4 m. over)
Road's fork - - - 6 80 Falls of New River - 5 220
Reedisland River - 14 94 Benjamin Morris's - - 8 228
Fugat's Ford Leonard Morris's - - 17 245
of New River- - 1 95 Venables' - - - - - - 5 250
John Feely's - - - 5 100 Cobb's - - - - - - - 7 257
Walker's Mountain- 15 115 Coal River and Coal
Shannon's - - - - 3 118 Mountain in the way to
Thos. Kirk's - - - 9 127 Hanley's - - - - - 18 265
Giles Court House- 2 129 M'Collister's - - - - 12 277
Peters ferry - - - 3 132 Grice's - - - - - - - 16 293
Peters town - - - 7 139
Ohio River - - - - 9 302 Leisburg, in Highland
700 yds wide -Galliopolis County, Ohio - - - 3 396
Woods Joel Willis's - - - - 4 400
on Rackoon Ck- 11 313 Morgantown - - - - - 4 404
Judge Poor's - - - 15 328 Wilmington - - - - - 10 414
Town of Jackson - 8 336 Todd's fork Creek - - 3 417
Scioto Salt works. Ceasar's creek - - - 10 427
Coonts's - - - - - 11 347 Little Miami at
Richmond - - - - - 5 352 Waynesville - - - 3 430
Highbank-Prairies- 5 357 Springborough - - - - 8 438
Kilgore's ferry - 5 362 Franklin on the
(Scioto) Great Miami - - - 4 442
Chilicotho - - - - 4 366 Tapscott's - - - - - 2 444
Elijah Johnsons on Big twin Creek - - - 4 448
Paint Creek - 9 375 Eaton - - - - - - - 17 465
Greenfield - - - - 12 387 White Water Meet House
Rattlesnake creek RICHMOND --------- 16 481
at Monroetown- 6 393
- "This Bill may not be precisely correct in every instance" -
(foolscap paper - before 1820) obtained from Argus Ogborn
Quaker Historian, Richmond, Indiana. New Garden was in Greensboro,
North Carolina - Whitewater Meeting was begun 1809)
Louisville Vincennes Road
here were some Brethren who had come north of the Ohio River soon after 1800. These were mostly in the George Rogers Clark grant, which is now primarily Clark Co IN, to the north and east of the Falls (Louisville). Squire Boone had crossed the river to the west, settling in Grassy Valley (1802), south of Corydon IN, at the Squire Boone Cave.
Primarily, the Brethren of Kentucky moved up into Indiana as it was opened for settlement following the War of 1812. These followed the route of Clark's solders, as they returned from the Vincennes Campaign of the Revolutionary War. This route is now primarily that of US150 to Shoals IN, then US50 on west, to Vincennes, on the Wabash River. This is close to the original path, but it is somewhat north. The original path is identified as the "Buffalo Trace".
The Buffalo Trace is started at the Ohio River, near Clarksville. It goes northwest to Floyds Knob. At Floyds Knob, the Louisville Vincennes Road came in from the south. The early settlers crossed the Ohio River at Oatman's Ferry. Oatman's Ferry left the city of Louisville well below the falls, near the end of West Market Street, and landed at Ferry Street, in New Albany. From there, a road went west to Corydon (first Capitol of the State of Indiana), the Vincennes Road went north, and is identified now at State Street, in New Albany, as Paoli Pike or Old Vincennes Road. This goes north to Floyds Knob.
The Buffalo Trace went slightly north of west to Galena and Greenville, then turned sharply south, before turning back west, past the Reeps Cemetery (Brethren Church -named Indian Creek Church), and into Bradford, as its main east/west street. From Bradford it continues on west to Central Barren and Hancock Chapel. The Trace continued on slightly north and west to Cuzco, Crystal and Haysville, and just north of Otwell, to Algiers, Alford and Petersburg, then heading northwest to Vincennes. Modern roads are back country till arriving at Cuzco, where IN56 is followed to Haysville, there 56 turns south to Jasper, but the Buffalo Trace route continues west to Portersville going to Otwell. At Otwell, IN356 goes to Algiers, Alford and Petersburg. IN61 goes north from Petersburg, crossing the White River, to Monroe City, Verne and into Vincennes from the southwest.
A variant on this occurred early. From Bradford or Central Barren, the settlers turned north to Palmyra (IN135) where US150 is primarily the route followed on to Paoli and West Baden Springs (French Lick, originally called "Lick Creek" - a Quaker destination). An early Brethren Church was north of Paoli, near Orleans - the Lost River Church, now the Liberty Christian Church. Just off US150, southeast of Shoals, at Lacy was the Sampson Hill Church of the Brethren (now closed), Old IN550 was the original route continuing west to the early settlement of Hindostan Falls, then north to Loogootee (where US50 comes in from Shoals). There US50 continues due west to Vincennes, the Wabash River, and to Illinois and eventually, St Louis, Missouri.
migration route in Northeastern Ohio led from the Ohio River at East Liverpool Ohio, at the bend of the river, and went northwest to the mouth of the Cuyohoga River, Cleveland OH. Leaving the Ohio at East Liverpool, it is followed today by US 30, then at Lisbon OH continues as OH 14 to downtown Cleveland. An alternate access from the Beaver Valley in western Pennsylvania came in from the east as OH 14 at Salem OH. There seem to be Brethren who came from both directions. While many of these settled in Northeastern Ohio, others took the Shore Road, going to Northern Indiana and Illinois.
he Indians had a main route north from the Falls of the White River (Indianapolis), going to Lake Michigan. This route became the "Michigan Road". Michigan Territory was considered to be a line from the south tip of Lake Michigan to the tip of Lake Erie, at Toledo. Since the State of Ohio had already projected a line due west from north of Toledo, the line of Michigan Territory from Indiana Territory was solely across northern Indiana. Michigan City, South Bend, Mishawaka, Elkhart and Bristol were all in the old Michigan Territory. The first Brethren settled near Goshen and Elkhart, with early settlements west of South Bend at Portage Prairie and north along the Saint Joseph River.
Originally the Michigan Road seems to have gone north out of Indianapolis along Eagle Creek (US 421) to near Michigantown (IN 29) and crossed the Wabash River at Logansport. From there it went north to Rochester (IN 25) and to Plymouth and South Bend (US 31). It went past the old French Fort at Niles MI, to Lake Michigan at the mouth of the St Joseph River at Benton Harbor. We have note that the Michigan Road stayed east of the Kankakee River Swamps (these were not drained until about 1850 -when rapid settlement took over the now very fertile lands).
The large towns of Peru (on the Wabash) and Kokomo (on Wildcat Creek -and the Delaware Indian Road) caused a later redirection of the Road -in a more direct north-south line, and US 31 follows it closely from Indianapolis north.
OK -I've been collecting information about the Great Warriors Path the Western Branch to Lake Erie -and just put several of them together.
Originally the Rivers
ost of the original migration of the Brethren settlers moving west was on the Ohio River. The Brethren from Eastern Pennsylvania, Maryland, and Northern Virginia started on the old Braddock's Army Road from Cumberland Maryland, or Forbe's Road from Bedford County, Pennsylvania, going to the Forks of the Ohio at Pittsburgh. Many went to Elder George Wolfe at Redstone, on the Monongahela River, where he built flatboats, good flatboats, that would take them safely down the river. The Redstone Settlement was just up the road from old Fort Necessity where our first President, George Washington, had saved soldiers and Brethren teamsters when General Braddock was killed.
From Southern Virginia and the Yadkin in North Carolina, most of the Brethren followed the Kanawha Trace, the old Shawnee Indian War Path, down the New River to below the Falls of the Kanawha River where the Gauley River entered and the New / Kanawha became a safe river to travel. There they built their flatboats and floated down the Kanawha, down the Ohio to the new lands west.
What is a flatboat? It is whatever they could put together. Some were big and strong and might even carry several families. Some barely held together, or were small. Even if it was his best it might prove not adequate for the trip ahead. It was a flat bottom boat, mostly rectangular in shape, with high sides and possibly a flat roofed cabin toward the back. A sweep formed the rudder to the rear and one of the men travelled on the roof and used the sweep to guide the flatboat as it traveled down the rivers. The flatboat carried the horses and wagons, all the family's goods, as it traveled to the new lands to the west.
Maybe it was easier to travel down the river than to go on land, but it was not safe. There were dead-heads: fallen trees, tops gone, hung up in the river totally underwater, but the end pointing upstream would sometimes be raised by the current, till it would breach the surface and punch a hole in the coming flatboat. In low water there were rocks and even rapids in the river which had to be navigated correctly. There were the falls at Louisville, where the river drops 24 feet in 4 miles, most settlers stopped there. Many stopped at Maysville on the Kentucky shore, some stopped at Cincinnati in Ohio Territory. Some hardy travelers ran the Falls in their flatboats, and continued downstream to the Cumberland and Tennessee Rivers, some went on to Illinois and Missouri. And always there were the Indians.
The migration of the white man was invasion of Indian country. White man drove off the game animals. He destroyed the forest. He destroyed the Indian customs and life. He claimed a small section of the land, of the forest, for himself. He killed the trees and opened it to bare land. The Indian knew that the land belonged to all people and was shared. No man had the right to destroy it. So from the start, each struggled to protect his own way of life. The flatboat had to tie up to the shore at night, it was too dangerous to travel in the dark, and the family liked to stretch its legs after the tiring day. A cooked meal tasted good, and fresh meat added to family provisions. The Indian was watching the passing flatboat, they could attack it where it stopped. A captive might be used to lure the boat close for attack and capture. An arrow might fall from the forest cover to stick in the wood or even injure or kill man or animal. Sometimes there would be a sneak attack with warriors suddenly coming over the sides of the boat, especially if it were too near the shore. There was Three Islands (Manchester, Ohio), where the river narrowed as it passed between the islands, the Indians often caught the men working the sweeps too hard, intent on the passage between the islands, to watch for attacking Indians. These were hazards of the trip, known, faced and normally avoided or overcome. Some died, many arrived at Limestone, and Bullskin Landing, at Cincinnati and the Falls.
Brethren settlements were made where good lands were found. There were no good farmlands above the hills on the Ohio, not till you came to the Great Sandy River in Kentucky. Just below that was Limestone (now Maysville, Kentucky), where the trace went south to Blue Lick Springs and the Brethren Settlements on the Kentucky River, and Zane's Trace came down from up at Fort Henry (Wheeling). The lands were rough, not suitable for farming on the Ohio side, even across from Limestone, good land could only be found far up Zane's Trace, up near John Countryman's settlement. At Bullskin Landing, Bullskin Creek made a deep sheltered cove up into the hills along the River. The Indians used it, to store their canoes, for crossing to the Kaintuck shore. It was used so frequenty, that a major Indian Road went from the Bullskin to Old Chillicothe (near Xenia, Ohio) and on from there clear to the British Fort Detroit. This became a common goal for the Brethren migrant, since here, for the first time, was found good farmland within reasonable distance from the river, and Brethren congregations were soon found here.
Cincinnati was between the Little Miami River and the Great Miami River, both coming from far inland in Ohio Territory. Early settlements grew up on both rivers, and the Brethren quickly came. Across the river was the mouth of the Licking River which went down into settled areas of Kaintuck. Brethren were found there, but no churches are known. Downstream from Cincinnati, the Kentucky River comes in from the south near Madison, Indiana. The Brethren had settled upstream on it, where there was good farmland. Soon, Brethren were across the river, the first Brethren Church in Indiana Territory.
At the Falls, the Brethren found good farmland back from the river, Elk Creek and the branches of the Salt River. So many migrants stopped because of the Falls on the Ohio, a healthy church grew up here, and some moved across the river westward into Indiana Territory, to the Blue and Patoka River valleys.
Some later Brethren moved up the Wabash River to a Brethren settlement in the Ladoga congregation of western Indiana, but early migration went south up the Green River to the Rhodes Settlement in Muhlenberg County, Kentucky and on up the Barren River to the Dutch Settlement near Bowling Green, Kentucky. Famous here is Elder George Wolfe, son of the Flatboat Builder at Redstone Pennsylvania, and Elder John Hendricks of the Yadkin in North Carolina. These two early led settlement of the Brethren into Illinois and Missouri, the Far Western Brethren.
Most of the Brethren migration by flatboat ended with the opening of the Old National Road across Ohio, then across Indiana and Illinois to St. Louis, Missouri, by 1837. It had lasted about 50 years.
here were probably as many reasons for moving to the new frontier as there were people who came. A very common reason was financial. Land cost in the settled East - Pennsylvania, Virginia, the Carolinas. There was only so much land, and families were large. One son could inherit the home place, it might be the eldest, and frequently it was the youngest, who then had the responsibility of the parents. Sometimes enough land would be divided between a couple sons. Elder Carey Toney gave each of his children a Quarter Section when they got married. A smart daughter might marry a young man who would come into land, or a son to a young woman who was heir to her father. These families remained locally. There was always the man who didn't make it and left. His land could be obtained for a reasonable price for some local son. But what could the rest do? Some would die in childhood, God forbid. An occasional son would run off, to sea, or go west, and never be heard from again, whatever the reason: Indians, murdered, the far mountain trappers, lost at sea in storms, or settled down in some distant community and never send word home. Some daughters would never marry. But what about the rest? To these the open frontier was a blessing, no matter what the work and suffering. In many instances one son would be left the home place and all the rest of the family "went west", including the parents. Land was cheap in cost, it just took hard work. A person could get a good start with his own labor. They were farmers, good farmers and those lands on the frontier were fertile, so very, very fertile: topsoil two feet deep. The kind of land that gladdens the heart of any good farmer.
For some, it was depression. The government didn't issue the money, usually it was some big Bank and banks will fail. When it couldn't back its money, the money was no good. And suddenly, there was nothing to pay off a loan, or a debt. President Andrew Jackson even went so far as to sign the Credit Mobilizer - making only silver coins be money, not the paper dollars everyone had, stuffed away in a sock, or buried in a box. Then all your life's savings, were not worth the space they took. The Brethren were hard working people. But what do you do, when even that isn't enough?
For the Brethren in Virginia and Carolinas there was another reason. They had fled Pennsylvania to escape the pressures of the War against England. Now, even more distressing, was the conflict rising over the ownership of their fellow man. The South had the institution of slavery. True, the poorer people seldom afforded such, but the acceptance was there, even back at the edge of the mountains and in the Valley. The Brethren could not accept the idea of slavery. They looked for a place to go where they could live like they felt life should be lived, and the North West Frontier beckoned. Tobias Miller inherited a group of slaves when his father-in-law died, he freed them, bankrupting himself, and came west to this new good farmland, his brother was here.
So they came: to Kentucky, to Ohio, to Indiana, to Illinois. They came alone and with others. A man found a tract of wonderful land and made it his own. Then he went back, for family, friends, neighbors and kin, till many came, for many hands make light work and there was much work to do. They came by pack-horse train up an Indian Trail. They came down the Ohio River, the whole family in a Flatboat, with team and wagon aboard. They came by several trails in Conestoga wagons, pulled by yokes of oxen or teams of horses, four horse teams. They brought an ax, a plow and a scythe, at bare minimum, but many brought more and enough. The Lybrooks brought cherry bedsteads and cherry cupboard cabinets that are still in the family. They weren't rich, but they had what they needed and it was good. Some might come with very little, but the Brethren helped each other to make do. And those that came, wrote back to others -about this wonderful land, and next year, they came too. The Brethren came West!
Valley or Great Wagon Road
s the Brethren and other German settlers moved out from Germantown, Pennsylvania, some regular paths of migration developed. One went west through Lancaster to Gettysburg and swung southward to Nichol's Gap in the South Mountain ridge, to Waynesboro, Franklin County, Pennsylvania, on Antietam Creek. The Brethren early settled on the Antietam and Conococheague Creeks, as early as 1742, only a couple decades after they first arrive in the New World. They came from Berks County, the Oley Church. On the Conococheague they formed a church under Nicholas Martin. From the distant hills, the ridge of mountains look bluish, and for a long way, they are called that: the Blue Ridge. They are the first range of mountains going west from the coast, past the rolling hills and streams of the piedmont. They stretch from northeast to southwest. The mountains are far from the coast down in the Carolinas, they are close in upper Pennsylvania and New York. Behind this first ridge are several higher ridges, essentially parallel, with large valleys in between. In Virginia, this first valley is called the Shenandoah, after the main river that runs in it. Various rivers break through the front rampart, into the valley: The Susquehanna and Juniata, in Pennsylvania; the Potomac, the border between Maryland and Virginia; the James, the Roanoke.
The Valley, called Shenandoah in Virginia, reaches up through Maryland and into Pennsylvania. It is the valley of Antietam Creek and Conococheague Creek coming south to the Potomac, just as it is the Shenandoah River going north to the Potomac in northern Virginia. After it breaks through the ridge the James River forks in two branches -one going northeast, up the valley, and one southwest, down the valley. Similarly, the Roanoke River after it breaks through the Blue Ridge, forks into a branch going toward the James, and a branch going southwest toward the New River. The Valley itself mostly stops south of the Roanoke. The New River, coming up out of the mountains of North Carolina, has cut its own valleys, as it breaks through the Allegheny Front can goes west to the Ohio River. South of it are the several parallel valleys with the Holston and Clinch Rivers going south west into Tennessee, where they form the Tennessee River. The Great Warrior's Path went down this valley, from New York.
It's into this Great Valley, that there was movement southward. The Great Warrior's Path came down the Conococheague Creek to the Potomac. Its start was among the Iroquois Indians of the Finger Lakes and Mohawk River of New York Colony. It went to the Cherokee lands in the south - to Tennesee Country. Some early Brethren came west to the Great Warrior's Path and moved on south. Alexander Mack Jr., with the Eckerlin brothers, went to a settlement on the New River, south of Fincastle, south of Big Lick on the Roanoke River. It was called "Dunkard Bottoms", they called it "Mahanaim", today it is under the Reservoir at Blacksburg, Virginia.
Brethren families moved south. A settlement, the Shenandoah Church was formed, at the Fink Settlement near Strassburg Virginia. But a problem developed in Virginia - it was a Royal Colony. It had a State Church, the Church of England (Anglican Church or Episcopal Church today). You could only be married or buried through the church (by fee), and you were supposed to be a member of it (infant baptism). At least they demanded that you pay your tithes to it each year. The Brethren did not stay in Virginia until the time of the Revolution, when the Church of England lost its hold on the people of the colony.
The Great Wagon Road followed the Great Warrior's Path down the Valley of Virginia. From Waynesboro it came down the Path, through Hagarstown, Maryland, to the Potomac. It crossed the Potomac River at Watkins Ferry, south of Hagarstown, and followed Opequon Creek past Fort Louden and old Frederick Town (now Winchester Virginia). It crossed over to Strassburg on the North Fork of the Shenandoah River. It stayed in the main Valley, west of the Massanutten Moutain Ridge (which divided the North Fork and South Forks of the Shenandoah), west of the River, the Shenandoah. Towns grew up along it: Woodstock, New Market and Harrisonburg, Virginia. It went on, Stanton and Lexington, on to the North River of the James. It went to the rare Natural Bridge, and James River City. It left the James going to Fincastle and on to the Big Lick on the Stanton or Roanoke River (now Roanoke Virginia). Here a branch went through the Roanoke River Gap and south to the Carolinas: the Carolina Road. The wagon road continued on down the Valley to the New River. It crossed at Ingles Ferry, to go to Dunkers Bottom, Blacksburg and Christiansburg. It went on to Stephen Holston's (Wytheville), and Stalnackers (Marion) on the Holston River, to Abingdon. It went on to Bristol on the Virginia Line, to Long Island of the Holston (Kingsport) in Tennessee, where the North Branch joins, making the headwaters of the Tennessee River, and continuing down the front of Clinch Mountain, Bean Station and Knoxville. This route is old U.S. 11 (I-81 is closely parallel).
There was an large settlement of the Brethren on the Holston and Clinch Rivers, west of the Mountains. This is the main center of Tennessee District of the Church of the Brethren.
A branch of the Great Warriors Path turned west, just south of Abingdon. It crossed Moccasin Gap through Clinch Mountain, crossed the Clinch River Valley, and Powell Mountain, into the Powell River Valley, till it came to a gap in the Alleghany Front, named the Cumberland Gap, after the Duke of Cumberland. Thomas Walker and Daniel Boone pioneered this road - for the thousands that went into Kaintuck.
n 1769 Daniel Boone left his family on the Yadkin, to try to gain some of the fur profits of storied Kaintuck. One source says that he crossed to the Holston Valley of Lee County, Virginia, and followed the Great Warrior's Path west to Powell Valley and the Cumberland Gap. Another gives a pass through the Blue Ridge along the headwaters of the Wautagua River of Tennessee, into the Holston River Valley. He found the land as wonderful as his dreams and decided to move. He also found that others were already there before him. Just across the gap, leaving behind the high ridge, into the multitudinous broken streams, he could hardly stand the stink. Thomas Walker had trapped the area recently, the decaying skinned bodies left lying scattered along the Great Warrior's Path were so nauseating it was almost impossible to travel. The Great Warrior's Path stayed in the edge of the hills, going down Goose Creek to Manchester, Kentucky, (past the Flat Creek Mission) and headed north to the Ohio at the mouth of the Scioto River. It continued on north as the Scioto Trail, back to the Lake Erie, near Sandusky, the land of the Tuscaroras Indians.
Daniel Boone brought his family and neighbors to Kentucky the next year. They built the little Fort on the Kentucky River - called Boonesboro, then he began to break a new route through the rough ridges to the Blue Grass plains of the Kentucky River, a road that would not go up Stinking Creek. Later, the road was widened for wagon traffic - it was the Wilderness Road.
U.S. 25E follows closely the route of the Wilderness road, from the Cumberland Gap, across Pine Mountain (and the famous "Chained Rock" on its slope) to Pineville, Kentucky, to Corbin and London, to Richmond and Boonesboro, on the Kentucky River. From Renfro Valley and Berea on, the road is leaving the Mountainous Hills and Valleys, and entering the bluegrass of Kentucky. The edge of the Hills into the Bluegrass is very abrupt and obvious.
Near Berea, Kentucky is Big Hill - standing along, out away from the hills, there legend says that Daniel Boone, chased by the Indians, climbed the high limestone cliffs that completely circle the mountain - and using the butt of his rifle, smashed the fingers of the Indians who tried to also gain the top against him.
Near Mount Vernon, just below Renfro Valley, was the Hazel Patch. Here Logan's Path broke from the Wilderness Road and headed northwest to Crab Orchard and Logan's Fort or St. Asaph (Stanford), to Danville, Fort Harrod (Harrodsburg) and the Falls (Louisville). It cut through the heart of the Blue Grass of Kentucky. It is followed primarily today by U.S. 150. From Danville, U.S. 127 goes to north to Frankfort, which became the capitol of the State of Kentucky. Fort Harrod was about 10 miles north, from there Logan's Path headed northwest on a buffalo trace between the Cox and the Salt Rivers. This is followed somewhat by KY 390 to close to the Blue Grass Parkway. From there it cut across country to US 62 somewhere near Chaplin. At Bloomfield it followed KY 48, and then 480 to Shepherdsville. A destination was Bullitt Lick, on KY 44 a couple miles west of Shepherdsville. From Bullitt Lick the trace headed northward, tending east to KY 1020 near Hubers and on to Brooks and on to The Falls (Louisville) from the south. As they approached today's city, the Buffalo Trace divided several ways, which were variously followed by settlers.
For many migrants one destination was Oatman's Ferry, across the Ohio River, below the Falls. It seems to have run from West Market Street in Louisville to the beginning of Corydon Pike in New Albany. In Indiana, a road also went from the Ferry north till it came to the Buffalo Trace, that went across to Vincennes on the Wabash.
(This is US150 – from Mt Vernon, to Crab Orchard, to Stanford – the site of Logan’s Station.)
The Brethren followed this route from the Carolinas and Virginia to Kentucky, and some on to Indiana. Logan's Path was later called the "Wilderness Road" going to "The Falls" (Louisville KY). Source: "Journey from North Carolina to Indiana in 34 Days in the Year 1815." Illiana Genealogist, Vol. 12 No. 4, (Fall 1976). pp. 121-124 (Quaker List - Permission to use).
Letter to Nathan Dixon, Chatham County, Tick Creek, North Carolina by George Rubottom:
Sept. 8 Got off from home about 12 oclock, traveled to Scottens and took up. 14 miles.
Nothing remarkable passed today.
Sept. 9 Left camp at 7. went on well, reached Nathan Lamb's at 3 and made preparations for
doctoring the wounded horse. Traveled 15 miles.
Sept. 10 Rested with our friend Nathan Lamb. Horse is considerably better.
Sept. 11 Left our benefactors, went to Zeno Worth's, the waggon that was to join us here did not
come according to promise, waited until 12 oclock then went on about 4 miles and fed.
The waggons joined us this evening and we camped at Armfields. 9 miles. The horse
continues to mend.
Sept. 12 We continued our journey before sunrise, passed Clemens at 10 oclock. Fed at Deep
River, after dinner went on, camped at John Smiths. 21 miles.
Sept. 13 Started about 6 oclock, went on very well, took dinner at 12 then went on, crossed Little
Yadkin at twilight, traveled 2 miles further and took up lodging for the night. 24 miles.
Sept. 14 Left camp after sunrise, went on as usual, crossed Tom's Creek about 10 oclock, fed at
Flatshore Creek then went on, crossed the Ararat at 6, took up at Thomas Parkins. We had
a very considerable shower of rain this evening. Made 18 miles.
Sept. 15 Left camp about sunrise, went on well, fed at the foot of the Blue Ridges. Began the
ascent at Ward's Gap at half past 2 oclock. Our teams had tolerable hard drawing. They
went up without doubling. When about half way up we had to assist Thomas White, his
team wa ? exactly true, but were overloaded. We gained the top after 6, went half a mile
and took up lodging. 14 miles.
Sept. 16 Started at half past 6, the road is very, hilly and in bad order. Took up at 12 for dinner.
Moved on at 2, went till sunset and took up. 15 miles.
Sept. 17 A cloudy morning, several showers of rain fell last night. Started before sunrise, went on
very well, reached Pearces Furnice by 10 oclock, viewed it half an hour then went on. At
12 it began to rain, crossed New River at Porter's Ford at about 3 oclock. It continued to
rain till night and was very cool. Took up this evening at one Painters who favored us
with a room to lodge In. Made 14 miles. (Name may be Pointers).
Sept. 18 Left Painter's, crossed Cripple Creek, went on till 12 and took dinner, then went on. Took up
for the night at the head of Cripple Creek. It became clear this evening. Made 19 miles.
Sept. 19 Is frosty morning, set off a quarter before 7, went on as usual. Stopped at the head of the
South Fork of Holston for dinner and viewed the curiosities of the place, went into a cave.
It has a spacious entrance as large as a common room. In viewing it we found another, the
mouth was small. We got a torch and went into it, sometimes we could walk upright, at
others, half bent. Viewed its various winding till satisfied and went out. There are several
large springs which offered water enough to turn a mill in a short distance. After dinner,
went on. Joseph is very unwell, supposed to be cold. Took up at 4 on account of his illness.
Made 15 miles.
Sept. 20 A foggy morning. Moved off at 7, went on well. Took dinner at the Seven Mile Ford on
Holston, then went on, some showers of rain fell this evening. Took up at 6 at William
Levis who favored us with a room to lodge in. Traveled 20 miles. Joseph is considerable
Sept. 21 A rainy morning. Continued our journey at 7. Halted at 1 and fed, then went on. Passed
thru Abingdon at 3 oclock. Traveled about 3 miles further and took up. 17 miles. It
continued to rain at intervals during the whole of this day.
Sept. 22 Another wet morning. Started before sunrise. Went on well. Halted at half past 11 and
fed, then went on, took up at 6. A fair evening. Made 21 miles.
Sept. 23 A foggy morning. Moved on at half past 6, went on well till half past 9 when the tire on
one of White's waggon wheels broke. Stopped and had it mended, went on again at 12
oclock, took up for the night at the boat yard on Holston. 16 miles.
Sept. 24 Another foggy morning. Went on at 6, crossed the North of Holston at 7. Took dinner at
12, then went on. This evening is clear, stopped at 6 and made preparations for the night.
Sept. 25 This morning is clear, started about 6 oclock, went on well, halted at Rogers Mill half
after 8 to have some of our horses' shoes nailed on, then went on, fed at half past 11, then
went on, took up at 6. Made 22 miles.
Sept. 26 A finer morning. Set off at 6, passed Bean Station about 10 oclock, went 2 miles and
fed, then went on, began to ascend Clinch mountain at the Freestone Gap at 1 oclock. The
road for about half way up this mountain is in extreme bad order where we found hands at
work, from there to the top it was very good. Gained the top at half past 3 then descended
the western declivity. Took lodging at Clinch River. Made 16 miles.
Sept. 27 Rested our teams today. We spent the day in killing squirrels and so forth.
Sept. 28 Packed up our lumber ? and started, crossed Clinch on a bridge which was 150 yards
long. Paid 2 dollars for crossing. Went on till 12 and fed, then went on, passed thru
Tazwell, seat of justice for Clabourn county. Went till 6 and made preparations, for
the night. 15 miles.
Sept. 29 Set off at 6, crossed Powell's River this morning, began to ascend Cumberland mountain at
11 oclock, gained the top in half an hour, went on to Yellow Creek and fed, then went on till 6 and
took up. 18 miles.
Sept. 30 A foggy morning, moved on at 6, went about 5 miles when we came to the Cumberland
Turnpike, paid $2.87 1/5 to have the gate opened, then went on till half past 11 oclock and
fed, after dinner went on till sun set and took up, made 20 miles. We had a hard shower of
rain today, also a slight one yesterday.
Oct. 1 Sabbath... Another foggy morning. Set off at 6, went till 12 and fed. Went on at 1. Took up
on Laurel Creek. 191 miles.
Oct. 2 This morning foggy, set off at 6. Nothing remarkable passed. Fed at 12 oclock, then went
on, crossed Little Rock Castle, went over some rough nobs. Crossed Big Rock Castle when
it was nearly dark. Drove half a mile and took up. 22 1/2 miles. (US25 crosses the Rockcastle
River at Livingston KY. The river goes south to the Cumberland. The name comes from an
isolated mountain cone with a large ledge of rock near the peak. Daniel Boone, by legend,
is supposed to have taken refuge from Indians, and run around the peak, pounding the fingers
of the climbing Indians to knock them off the peak.)
Oct. 3 Scarcely a morning passed without fog, continued our journey at 7, went on well, took
dinner at 1 at Mt. Vernon , halted at 6 and made preparations for the night. 18 miles.
Oct. 4 A clear morning, proceeded at 6, passed thru the Crab Orchard at 9, halted at 1 for dinner,
then went on a mile to Stanford, waited 2 hours to have White's waggon wheels clamped,
then drove 5 miles and took up. 19 1/2 miles.
Oct. 5 Set off before sunrise, passed thru Danville at 9, halted at half past 11 for dinner. Went on
again at 1. Passed thru Harodsburg at 3. went on till sunset and took up. 23 miles.
(Danville is where the State Charter was formed. Harrodsburg was a major frontier fort.)
Oct .6 Started about sunrise, went on well, halted at 12 for dinner then went on. It began to rain
about 2 and continued to rain thru the night, sometimes very hard. We found a cabin to lodge
us. 20 miles.
Oct. 7 A cloudy morning. Several showers fell last night. Moved on about 7, went on tolerable
well tho the road was very slippery. Stopped at half past 12 for dinner then went on, passed thru
Shelbyville about 5, went 1 mile and took up, made 20 miles.
Oct. 8 Another cloudy morning. Took up the line of march before sunrise, went on till half after
11 and fed, then went on, passed thru Middletown at 3, took up for the night about 6. Some
light showers fell today. Made 21 miles.
Oct. 9 A clear morning. Made an early start, traveled 7 1/2 miles to Lewisville, staid in town till
11 oclock, then went to the river, it took from 1 to 3 oclock to take the waggons over, paid 2
dollars for each waggon ferriage. Then went on about 21 miles and took up. 14 miles.
Oct. 10 Set off early went on tolerable well. Fed at 12, then went on, took up on Blue River,
22 miles. We have had a long fatigueing journey, but have stood it well, nothing more than
a cold to complain of, we are in fine spirits and expect to reach Lick Creek tomorrow.
Oct. 11 Crossed Blue River, went on well, took dinner at 11, then went on. Reached the place of
destination before sunset and found the neighbors very unhealthy. Apply to Joel Dixon for
particulars concerning the complaint. The expense of the journey from North Carolina to Lick
Creek, Indiana is $81.00 including ferriage, bridge tolls, turn pike fees etc.
The Cumberland Trace (sometimes called the "Hunter's Trace")
A third branch of the Wilderness road, the Cumberland Trace, was blazed through the Green River Country going to Fort Nashboro (Nashville TN) on the Cumberland River. The Trace branched westward off the Logan's Path of the Wilderness Road at Benjamin Logan’s Fort, Stanford, in Lincoln County KY. A few miles west along the Trace was the McCormick's Christian Church. Traditions of this church could mean that it was originally a Brethren church.
Continuing west from Fort Logan, the Cumberland Trace followed a path that is now often farm fields or back roads. It reached the village of Hustonville. Main Street in Hustonville is named the Cumberland Trace (KY78). From here, the original Cumberland Trace veered slightly off to the southwest to Nealy’s Gap and down Russell’s branch to Ellisburg. (Ky78)
The Trail crossed the south fork of the Rolling Fork River and Sinking Creek to near Campbellsville, then crossed the ridge to Trace Creek and followed it on KY88 to a ford crossing the Green River about three miles west of Greensburg. A settlement of Brethren is found here, calling this "Green River Country".
Continuing on KY88, the Trace crossed the Little Barren River at Elk Lick Ford, then continued westward to near Cave City and Mammoth Cave. From here it seems to have been followed closely by US31W to McFadin's Station, crossing the Barren River at Ewing's Ford near the mouth of Drake's Creek (approximately where I-65 crosses the Barren River, 4 miles E. of Bowling Green).
The Cumberland Trace continued south following along Drakes Creek to and across the Tennessee state Line. Later Baptist churches on Lick Creek and Trammel's Fork, were descended from the Drakes Creek Brethren Church.
Continuing south in Tennessee in the Red River Valley, along approximately US31W, the Cumberland Trace came to Mansker's Station at Goodlettsville. Here the Trace was met by a later road from Eastern Tennessee (from Kingston or the Holston River, variously called the Avery Trace or Emery Road), this road was poorly built, and for years was not open to wagon traffic.
The twelve mile road from Mansker's Fort to Fort Nashboro (Nashville), on the Cumberland River, followed buffalo trails near the present day Dickerson Road. The Fort was on the south side of the River. A Brethren settlement was farther south and west in Dickerson County.
riginally called the Cumberland Road, since it was going to the West from Cumberland Maryland. It started at the end of an early road from Baltimore, Maryland, that went to Cumberland, Maryland, and followed the Pennsylvania path of General Braddock's Army road to Pittsburgh. In Fayette County, Pennsylvania, passing the historic Fort Necessity, of young George Washington, it headed down the Redstone River to the Monongehela. At Old Fort Redstone, now Brownsville, Pennsylvania, many built flatboats for travel down the Ohio River. It crossed the Monongehela and went on to Washington County, Pennsylvania going to the Ohio River. It arrived at the Ohio, at Old Fort Henry, now Wheeling, West Virginia, in 1818. The Old National Road became U.S. 40, and now is paralleled by I-70. The Old National Road left the west bank of the Ohio River in 1825. It continued on across the state of Ohio, with its destination being the new Capitol of Indiana: Indianapolis. It arrived at Richmond, Indiana, in 1827, but was stopped by, and did not cross the Gorge until 1835. But by then there was Vandalia, the capitol of the new state of Illinois, and the destination for the Road was set at St. Louis, Missouri, which it reached in 1837. Local construction was by sections, connecting them across the state.
The Old National Road followed the Old Zane Trace (1784) from Fort Henry to Zanesville. At Zanesville the Zane Trace turning southwest to Chillicothe, the Old National Road going west, this was memorialized by the "Y" Bridge. In the very center of the River where the Licking joins the Muskingum, the Covered Bridge (and the modern highway bridge) divided. Go left and you follow the Zane Trace (U.S. 22) past the White Cottage Church of the Brethen, toward Chillicothe. Go right and you follow the Old National Road to Columbus and Dayton. The Brethren settled heavily around Dayton using the Old National Road.
The Road in the east had been poorly built, and had to be rebuilt due to the heavy wagon usage. When the decision was made to push the Road on across the nation, the Road east was rebuilt from this experience and the new Road, on west, was built better from the start. It was built on a right-of-way that was 80 feet wide. It was a "Macadam", fifteen feet wide, built of 3 layers of crushed stone, 15 inches deep in the center, but sloping off to the edges for drainage. The Road was "metal-surfaced", graded with a metal blade, at least occasionally.
A feature of the Old National Road that can still be seen is its S bridges. The builders of the Road crossed the streams at right angles. Streams do not always flow perpendicular to the Road, so many of approaches curve up onto the bridges. Most of the bridges also are highly arched. The Old National Road had another feature in its day that one considers to be very modern. About 2 miles east of Richmond, Indiana, in Preble County, Ohio, on U.S. 40, on the south side of the Road, is standing a trunkated Pine Tree. It only has a few living branches. This is the only one remaining of originally a triangle of 3 Pine Trees: the Old National Road designation of a Rest Stop.
The Road had heavy usage. From the very first, Richmond, Indiana, recorded traffic of 100 wagons a day. Many were Conestoga Wagons pulled by 4 to 6 horses or oxen. Shipping charges were $10 per ton. Lighter traffic was with "shake-guts", unsprung carts with 2 huge wheels. In 1832, Zanesville counted:
2357 wagons with 3 or more horses
11613 2-horse carriages or wagons
14907 1-horse carriages
35310 horseback riders
16750 horses and mules
24410 sheep - driven
52845 hogs - driven
96323 cattle -driven
That is 100 vehicles a day, and herds of animals, going 18-20 miles a day, west!
Many of the Brethren came west in 1828 or 1830 on the Old National Road, and the Brethren used the Road for settlement into Indiana and Illinois. In Indiana, there were already several Brethren communities near the Road: the Four Mile, south of Richmond; the Nettle Creek, west of Richmond; and the Ladoga Churches, over near the Wabash in western Indiana; but for most of Indiana and Illinois, the churches were considerably north and migration came west on the Road, then turned north. At St. Louis, the end of the Old Nation Road was the springboard for migration on the Mississippi and Missouri Rivers to the West, settlements in: Missouri, Iowa, Kansas, Nebraska. The Old National Road is probably one of the most important factors of westward migration in the United States.
n 1793, General "Mad" Anthony Wayne, of Revolutionary War fame, replaced Governor St. Clair, who had been so devastatingly defeated at Fort Recovery ,Ohio. He came to Fort Washington (now Cincinnati, Ohio) and brought with him something that Governor St. Clair did not have - a contingent of the Continental Line, 1500 soldiers strong. He supplemented these with Kentucky militia, having a total well over 2500. These were station on the Great Miami River, just north of Cincinnatus, at Fort Hamilton. He crossed the River with his army, and moved northward, upstream. He first crossed a river at four miles from Fort Hamilton, which he named the: "Four Mile" (stream followed by the Delaware Indian Road, and stream on which the Four Mile Church was formed in Indiana). He continued upstream and at 7 miles forded another river, which again he logically named, the: "Seven Mile" (this stream goes north to Eaton Ohio, the site of old Fort St. Clair, of the previous Governor). He marched up the east side of the Seven Mile, above the banks on the hills alongside. His trace is about one mile east and parallel to U.S. 127. He passed the old Fort St. Clair and went on toward St. Clair's fort at Fort Jefferson. He passed through the town of Castine and his men camped about 2 miles south of Fort Jefferson, at Wayne Lakes on Ohio 121. He moved on north of Fort Jefferson to a heights along the Greenville Creek and built a large fort for overwinter, Fort Greenville. The fort stood about 2 blocks wide and about 4 blocks long, angling NE-SW along Greenville Creek. This places the nearest corner of the fort about 6 blocks from the Greenville Brethren's Home. During the winter, he had his soldiers built a fortification at the site of St. Clairs defeat, naming it Fort Recovery, 25 miles north of Greenville.
In 1794, he began his push north. The Indians met him at the old battlefield where the new fort was. This time they were defeated. With the stability of the professional Continental Line, General Wayne then began a very defensive forward advance - the Indians probed his lines and formation repeatedly, but could gain no advantage and could not stop him. He pushed them beyond their own villages and fields and destroyed all their supplies and substance.
Finally, on the Maumee River in northern Ohio, as he approached the established outpost British Fortifications, the Indians set up a major defense in the debris of a Tornado, the Battle of Fallen Timbers. Facing a bayonet charge by the Continenals, with the militia finding a way to their rear, the Indians fled. The Indian opposition to settlement in Ohio was ended at the Treaty of Greenville, 1795. A line was drawn across the state from Fort Recovery, and another line drawn from there, angling southwest to the Ohio, to the mouth of the Kentucky River (when the Ohio State LIne was laid in 1803, this additional area west of the Ohio Line was called "the Gore"). General Wayne named all the lands north and west of the Great Miami River (to Lake St. Mary's at Celina, Ohio) as Indian Territory - called "Indiana".
The area south and east of these lines was shared land, the Indians were free to use it, and the settlers could freely establish homes. (In a second treaty at Greenville, in 1814, the Brethren Minister, Philip Younce and his family played a major supporting role. Margaret Byrket Younce baked bread and offered food to the some 4000 Indians gathered there.)
The Wayne Trace from Greenville north is followed by Ohio 49 to Fort Recovery and north along the state line. At Willshire it jogs east across the St. Mary's River and continues north. At U.S. 224, the old trace continued north through Payne to the Maumee River, but Ohio 49 goes east and north to Convoy before coming back to Payne.
The early Brethren followed this route north from the settlements on the Great Miami (Montgomery, Miami, Darke, Preble Counties, Ohio) and the Four Mile. Earliest settlers were Jacob Witter and Squire Thompson who moved to the St Joseph River in Michigan Territory about 1824. They followed the Wayne Trace to the crossing of the St. Mary's River, then followed an Indian Trail going to the north-west. The Indian Trail went to the old French Fort at the juncture of the St. Mary's and St. Joseph Rivers which form the Maumee (Fort Wayne, Indiana) The Indian Trail continues northwest into the Lake area of Northern Indiana and follows the Elkhart River through Lagrange and Goshen, Indiana, to the St Joseph River (another one - named by the French Priest Champaign) at Elkhart, Indiana. It then follows the St. Joseph River west to its "South Bend" (Indiana) where it heads north past the French fort at Niles, Minnesota, to Lake Michigan at St. Joe-Benton Harbor, Minnesota. Goshen, Indiana, was named by the early Brethren for their early home on the Obannon, at Goshen in Clermont County, Ohio, (Obannon Church). The Indian Trail, starting near Columbus, Ohio, is followed by U.S. 33.
The Brethren settlements in northern Ohio, Indiana, and Illinois received other Brethren coming directly west from the Beaver River, off the Ohio just outside Pittsburgh. Other northern Pennsylvania Brethren used the old Shamokin Trail, which followed the West Branch of the Susquehanna River (to St. Marys / Dubois), possibly going through Warren to Erie Pennsylvania. These routes of migration have not been ascertained by me yet -- but in Ohio, those farther south basically are followed by U.S. 30 in the middle of the state. Farther north the migration route from the Beaver is along Ohio 14 to the Lakeshore and follows U.S. 6 and U.S. 20 west.
Some Canada Brethren used the lake shore roads, coming down from Niagara through Cleveland. Others crossed Ontario to Detroit, then followed the old Indian Trail that ran from Fort Detroit to Fort Dearborn (Chicago), now U.S. 12. Still others went to Georgian Bay, and came by water, down Lake Michigan to the Wisconsin and Illinois shores.
ollowing the Indian Treaties, some early Brethren had come up the wide Wabash River to "Wabash Country". These earliest settlers came only as far as Parke and Putnam Counties. They were met there by settlers from the Four Mile and from Preble Co IN. These had come overland, using a new trace. Wetzel's Trace was a route from the White Water River in Franklin Co IN (Laural) to the Falls of the White River (Indianapolis -where John Conner had a trading post). It is said to follow Indian trails, and today is followed closely by US 52 from Brookville IN. The Brethren went on due west from Indianapolis to the Wabash Country, the Ladoga Churches. There they met others, who came up the Wabash River from the Ohio. Several of the children of Potter John Miller went as early as 1818, with Potter John leaving the Four Mile and going there by 1822. The route west of Indianapolis is today followed by US 36.
benezer Zane lived at Fort Henry (now Wheeling, West Virginia). It was on the Virginia side of the Ohio River several days below Pittsburgh. He and his brothers were frontiersmen and fairly well known Indian Scouts. The government asked him to run a road to Limestone, in Kentucky, where there was a River landing and a trace going south to Blue Lick and Lexington. They had given him property rights at his choice in several of the best locations as payment. He had been all through those lands in Ohio Territory, and already had his route chosen. It would go almost due west until it came to the Muskingum River. He had even chosen a name for that location - Zanesville. Then the Trace would angle southwest until it crossed the Hocking River. That would be later named Lancaster. It would continue on more to the south till it came to the old Shawnee Indian village at Chillicothe on the Scioto River. The trace would go west from Chillicothe, along the Paint Creek, until a wide valley cut south to Ohio Brush Creek. There it would follow close to the Brush Creek due south, until finally it would head southwest through the valleys toward the Ohio River across from Limestone, or Maysville, as some people were beginning to call this river landing.
The route had its scenic spots, between Lancaster and Chillicothe was one of those Indian Mounds that had an unusual shape; it wasn't so high off the ground, but it looked like a large cross. Then there at Chillicothe, there must be a few hundred of different sizes of mounds of dirt, all grassed over in the trees, a city of them that someone called Mound City. They said people were buried in them, that it was an ancient Indian Village. Then all along the south side of Paint Creek, on top of the high ridges along it, were what looked like dirt forts, they had dug a ditch all around the top of the different hills, and piled the bank of dirt outside the ditch, just like a fort. And just before you got to the valley going down from Paint Creek to Ohio Brush Creek, right beside the creek, there was this huge mound of dirt, maybe twenty feet high, and not that much larger at the base - Seips Mound. Just as you got to Ohio Brush Creek, where you went through the pass, there was this largest of all of the dirt forts up on the high hill west of the pass, Fort Hill; and after you got through the pass, on the almost level open field below the hill, there was one of those huge circle mounds with the opening facing east toward the sun. Farther along Brush Creek, on a high bank on the east side, where the creek circled around it, there was this long wiggly snakelike mound, with a mouth and a ball like thing in its mouth, all of it made of dirt. It looked like a real Serpent Mound. Someone said that ancient Indians had lived here and built towns, more like white men, but that it was so long ago that even the native Indians didn't have any legends about it.
This was the Zane Trace. It was the first trace or white man's path in Ohio. It went west along what is now U.S. 40. Ebenezer Zane did start the town of Zanesville as a trading post. And the famous "Y" bridge in Zanesville is where the Zane Trace separated from the later Old National Road, right there in the middle of the bridge in the middle of where the Licking and Muskingum Rivers come together. The Trace leaves Zanesville on U.S. 22. A few miles out of Zanesville is the little town of White Cottage and the White Cottage Church of the Brethren, located right on the old trace. At Lancaster the trace headed more southernly on Ohio 159 to Chillicothe. Just outside Chillicothe, to the Northeast, there seems to have been an early Brethren settlement, and west of Chillicothe are a couple more Brethren communities. The trace went west along Paint Creek on U.S. 50 to Bainbridge, where Ohio 41 follows the Trace down past Fort Hill State Park, past Strait Creek Church of the Brethren and Woodland Altars Camp. (About 3 miles west at Locust Grove on Ohio 73 is the Serpent Mound State Park, nationally famous.) The Trace follows Ohio 41 on through Peebles (Marble Furnace Church of the Brethren is just west of town), to West Union and on to Aberdeen, across the Ohio River from Maysville. On top of the Hills on the River at Maysville, is the old town of Limestone.
Not many of the Brethren used the Zane Trace, except where it and the Kanawha Trace ran together going west from Chillicothe, and the Countryman family settlers coming up from Massie's Station on the Ohio River at Three Islands.