A.J. Mullins, Annie Butcher, Appalachia, Ben Adams, Ben Adams Family Cemetery, Brandon Kirk, Cecil Butcher, Chatillon's Improved Spring Balance, Dave Fry, distiller, Emalina Baisden, feud, Garland Fly Conley, genealogy, Harts Creek, Henderson Bryant, history, Kathy Adams, Lincoln County, Lincoln County Feud, Logan County, logging, Matthew Babe Dempsey, Melvin Conley, Mont Baisden, Mose Workman, Nab Smith, New York, photos, Pilgrims Rest Church, Reece Dalton, Rosabelle Fry, Smokehouse Fork, Spottswood, timber, Trace Fork, Van Butcher, Warren, West Virginia
Benjamin “Ben” Adams (1855-1910), son of Joseph and Dicy (Mullins) Adams, was a prominent logger, splasher, distiller, and tavern operator at Warren-Spottswood in Logan County, WV. He was a key participant in the Lincoln County Feud.
Abel Segur, Abraham Lincoln, Appalachia, Arthur I. Boreman, Bill Smith, Burlington, Cabell County, Cassville, Catlettsburg, Ceredo, Charleston, civil war, Confederate Army, crime, David Bartram, David Frasher, Department of West Virginia, deputy sheriff, G.W. Brown, Gallipolis, Gallipolis Journal, George Crook, Greenbrier County, Guyandotte, history, Ironton Register, Isaac Bloss, J.W. Merricks, Jack Meadows, Jefferson Davis, Jim Turner, John B. Bowen, John W. Holt, Kentucky, Logan County, Monroe County, Ohio, Ohio River, Pete Jeffers, Pike County, Pocahontas County, Point Pleasant, Raleigh County, sheriff, The Weekly Register, Tug Fork, Union Army, Wayne County, Webster County, West Virginia, Wheeling Intelligencer, William Wirt Brumfield
Below are several dispatches relating to the Civil War and immediate post-war era in Wayne County, West Virginia. These dispatches appeared in pro-Union newspapers.
Wheeling Intelligencer, 21 January 1865
WEST VIRGINIA AS A PLACE TO LIVE. I could not conscientiously recommend any one to come here now to live, although investment in farms will surely be profitable. The trouble now, chiefly, is that the guerrillas have broken up their organization, if they ever had any, and scattered into small squads to rob and steal. A schoolmistress, passing along a lonely road not far from Ceredo, was robbed of all her money, the amount she had just received for three months’ teaching, by three ruffians. A few nights ago men went to the house of a quiet farmer, one mile from Ceredo, and robbed him of a few dollars, all he had, and boots and some clothing. Some of the citizens keep arms in their houses, and intend to use them if visited in that way. One of these shot one of a gang of six one night not long ago, but became frightened himself, and ran off, giving the robbers a chance to take their wounded companion away. He has not been troubled since. Geo. Crook, commanding the Department of West Virginia, has issued a circular notifying the people that they must organize for their own protection, and recommends them to hunt the bushwhackers and kill them. Governor Boreman offers to furnish arms and ammunition. It will be done, and the guerrillas will decrease every week, I hope.
The Weekly Register (Point Pleasant, WV), 26 January 1865
GIVING THEMSELVES UP. — We learn that Lieut. Samuels, brother of Judge Samuels, formerly Adjutant General of this State, recently came into Wayne county, accompanied by a dozen or fifteen other rebel soldiers, all of whom took the amnesty oath. They say they are tired of fighting for nothing and freezing to death.
Wheeling Intelligencer, 21 February 1865
A GUERRILLA MURDER. We learn from citizens of Wayne county, who arrived yesterday, that a few days ago a guerrilla murder was committed at Ceredo, on the Ohio river in that county. It appears that a gang of men, under command of the notorious Bill Smith, came down to Ceredo and entered the house of Jack Meadows, a citizen, shot him through the heart, drove his wife and children out of doors, and set fire to the premises. Mrs. Meadows who fortunately armed with a revolver, shot one of the guerrillas dead and seriously wounded another, but not until one of her legs had been broken by a blow with a gun in the hands of one of the rebels. The rebels having completely destroyed the house of Mr. Meadows, and with all its contents, fled to their hiding places, leaving their dead companion unburied. Mrs. Meadows and her children were taken to Catlettsburg, Ky., where she still remains.
Wheeling Intelligencer, 23 February 1865
GUERRILLAS. — During the debate yesterday in the House of Delegates, upon the bill to provide for the better organization of the State Guards, some horrible pictures were presented of the condition of the loyal people of the border counties. Mr. Ferguson said that every part of the county of Wayne on the Ohio river, was held by guerrillas. In the county of Cabell only one two, Guyandotte, was held by the Federal troops. The rebels have their headquarters up in Logan county, and they make forays down toward the Ohio river, stealing, murdering and devastating the country. They enter the houses of loyal people and steal household furniture and bed clothing, and frequently strip women and children of wearing apparel and leave them in an actual state of nudity. Mr. Wells, of Raleigh, and Mr. Gregory, who represents Webster and Pocahontas, gave similar accounts of the condition of things in their respective localities.
Gallipolis Journal, 2 March 1865
CEREDO, WEST VIRGINIA. — Since the breaking out of the rebellion, “I give bread” town has been subjected to many vicissitudes. Its prospects when projected, in 1854, and later, was that of a great manufacturing city. Early in 1862, many of the Yankee citizens anticipated the coming storm, and either disposed of their property or left it to the despoiler. At one time it had a regiment quartered in its midst, but of late no troops have been nearer than Guyandotte. Disloyalty has cropped out under drunkenness and personal hate, until one’s life is endangered at any moment. Guerrillas and rebel sympathizers occupy the principal houses vacated by the owners. Not a public building stands untouched. The window and door frames, flooring and every sleeper of the hotel have been torn out and burned up. The dismantling of the steam saw mill and Glass Factory have long since been accomplished. Night is made hideous by the continued debaucheries of certain desperate characters, such as Jack Meddows and Pete Jeffers. There is not a loyal family left in Ceredo.
The Weekly Register (Point Pleasant, WV), 9 March 1865
A correspondent of the Ironton Register, writing from Burlington, O., says: The murder of Jack Middaughs, at Ceredo, on the 13th inst., was attended with some circumstances that deserve mention. The guerrillas surrounded his house before he knew of their presence. Then with a single revolver he drove them a little, wounding two of them. His wife then seized the revolver and threatened them, while Jack made his motions for escape. It was then that the rebs pressed forward to get up the stairs, Mrs. Middaugh standing at the head. Jim Turner was in advance, and finding Mrs. Middaugh in his way, swung his gun and with a blow smashed her foot. She then shot him through the breast, and he fell. At this moment Jack sprang down the stairs knocking down all in his path. He got out and nearly reached the woods, when he was met by three or four mounted men, who surrounded and killed him. — There were thirty-five men in the gang, with Smith, and it would be safe to say that twenty of them were at the house. Through this crowd Jack heroically fought his way and would have escaped but for the guards near the woods. The treatment of Mrs. Middaugh was barbarous in the extreme. It has been equaled only by the cruelties practiced by the Indians in the early times in this country. After she was disabled they took her and her children out, and made her lie down upon the ground, half dressed, refusing to permit her to get a single article from the house, while they were setting fire to it. On that bitter cold night of the 13th of February, in her condition, she was compelled to remain until the savages left. The conduct of this heroic woman is duly appreciated by the citizens of Catlettsburg and they have generously provided for her and her little ones.
Wheeling Register, 6 June 1865
The following resolutions were passed at a meeting of the citizens of Wayne county, West Virginia, held at the Court House on the 18th ult.:
WHEREAS, Our country is just emerging from civil war, which has laid waste our fields and drenched the land in fraternal blood; and
WHEREAS, It is to the interest of all to restore permanent peace and harmonize the elements necessary to a well regulated society; therefore, we, the people of Wayne county, in Mass Meeting assembled, do Resolve:
1st. That in the preservation and perpetuity of the principles set forth in the Constitution and Government of our fathers, we most sincerely and devoutly acknowledge an all wise Providence, who is the Giver of every good and perfect gift, and the common Father of us all; and we will, in time to come, rely implicitly upon Him for His protection and guidance.
2d. That it is the duty of every individual to lend his active aid and energy to the establishment of civil law, both State and National, and to its enforcement for the protection of life, liberty and property.
3d. That we justify and approve the Amnesty of President Lincoln. Its results have been beneficial, and the croakers and fault finders of the policy are morally arrayed against the Government and its best interest, and are not found among those who have fought its battles and borne it through the ordeal of war with success.
4th. That we concur in the convention called by the citizens of Greenbrier and Monroe, to meet at Charleston on the third day of June next, for the purpose of suppressing the lawless persons, and the restoration of order throughout the State, and do appoint and constitute Messrs. Abel Segur, John B. Bowen, R. Banton, and Isaac Bloss as delegates to represent Wayne county in said convention.
W.W. Brumfield, President
J.W. Merricks, Secretary
Wheeling Intelligencer, 25 April 1866
AFFAIRS IN WAYNE COUNTY. Cassville, Wayne Co., W.Va., March 23d, 1866. To the Governor of the State of West Virginia: Dear Sir: — After respects, I wish to call your immediate attention to some facts, as follows: Sometime last Spring you commissioned me as a notary public, and I was sworn and gave bond as the law directs. I am also assessor of the 2d district of Wayne county. I live and keep my office in Cassville; and it is with extreme difficulty and under great danger and hard threats that I am getting along. My entire neighborhood is rebel with the exception of old Squire Bartram and his boys, one of whom is our high Sheriff and another Capt. David Bartram our deputy Sheriff. I have forborne for a long time calling for men and arms, thinking the rebels would quiet down; but sir, we cannot execute the civil law unless something is done. We have been beaten by mobs and shot at on the streets and dared to help ourselves. They say they can’t have power, and we shan’t have it. Now, Governor, I suggest and absolutely insist that a company of one hundred volunteer militia be raised for our protection. The rebels say if you call out the militia, they will be in the majority but we do not want more than one hundred men. Our county is mostly quiet except around Cassville. A commander and company is not necessary for the enforcement of civil law in the lower end of the county. If in your judgment you see fit to commission and arm men, I would suggest that William Shannon be commissioned Captain. He is an honorable and upright man and knows something of both civil and military matters. Further, that David Frasher be commissioned as Lieutenant, to be stationed at Cassville. We must have from 25 to 50 men here in Cassville, or else we must get out of here. This is the landing place for all lumber that comes down Tug river. Those big buck rebels come down in time of high water sometimes by dozens from Logan county and from Pike county, Ky., with their navies [revolvers] buckled around them, hurrahing “for Jeff Davis,” cursing the Government, cursing Union men, and then we have to get out. Sir, I frequently see men come in here who are indicted for murder in Kentucky, defying everybody. Not more than eight miles from here, as some of the Home Guards were on their way home from being paid off a company of rebels fell on them and beat and abused them severely, calling the party “damned abolitionists,” and swore they would not submit to our laws. A few days ago they gathered in here and raised a riot with our Sheriff, and fell on him with clubs and weights and tried to kill him and his brother. His brother ran into my house for protection. They stoned my window out, knocked two panels out of my door and nearly killed my little child. If you see fit to protect us send the commissions immediately. The men can be raised in a few days. Send full instructions and special orders. You may send arms if you think proper, for there will be no doubt about recruiting the men immediately. We have plenty of guns here which belong to the State that can be gathered up. This company should be armed with revolvers instead of guns. I refer you to Major Brown [Col. G.W. Brown, Q.M. General], the man who came here and paid the home guards. He formed some acquaintance with me when he was here, also with Shannon and Lieut. Frasher. Yours, with respect, John W. Holt.
36th Virginia Volunteer Infantry Regiment, African-Americans, Appalachia, Battle of Kanawha Gap, Big Creek, Big Creek School, Burley Stollings, Buzzard Hill, Chapmanville District, Chapmanville School, Charles I. Stone, civil war, Confederate Army, Crispin Stone, Daisy Pettit, Daisy School, Dare Devils, Ed Stone School, Edith Richardson, education, Fort Sumter, French Dingess, Garrett Fork, genealogy, George Hill, Godby Branch, Guyandotte River, history, Holden, Hugh Thompson School, Hugh Toney, J.A. Vickers, J.G. Beymer, John Conley, John Garrett, John Godby, John stone, Kitchen School, Lane School, Local History and Topography of Logan County, Logan County, Lot W. Adams, Mabel Lowe, Native American History, Native Americans, Pigeon Mountain, Poplar Camp Creek, Prudential Coal Mine, Rosa Barker, Sid Ferrell, Simon Girty, Spanish-American War, Stone Branch, Stone Branch School, Thomas Huff, Thomas School, Union Army, Vette, Violet H. Agee, West Virginia, World War I
Teachers identified the following schools in Chapmanville District of Logan County, WV, and offered a bit of local history in 1927:
Big Creek School, est. 1852
Edith Richardson, teacher
Big Creek School was built of logs in 1870. Crispin S. Stone taught the first free school in his kitchen in 1870. A log building was erected the next year by the people. A Baptist Church exists here as of 1906. Many soldiers of the Civil War served from here. Two are still living. George Hill of Holden served in the Spanish-American War. Sid Ferrell of Big Creek was wounded in World War I when he left the trenches ahead of his command. The first merchant started here in 1904. Prudential was the first coal mine, just below here, in 1905. The first gas well was drilled here in 1909. Big Creek was formerly named “vette.” On the left of Big Creek (stream) looking downstream is Buzzard Hill and on the right is Pigeon Mountain. Pigeon Hill was named due to the great number of pigeons resting there. Big Creek was formerly called Poplar Camp Creek from a surveyor’s camp made of logs. The town was pretty well built up since 1902.
Lane School, est. 1887
Mable Lowe, teacher
Two room frame building
Four Confederate soldiers and one Union soldier lived here during the war. Garrett Fork was named for John Garrett, an old soldier.
Under the entry for Godby Branch: Godby Branch was named for John Godby. Old settlers claim that Simon Girty who married an Indian squaw lived on Godby Branch for several years. He cut his name on a large beech tree that fell in 1890. John Godby told the story.
Chapmanville School, est. 1892
Lot W. Adams, teacher
Four rooms and two outside rooms
There is a large Indian mound in Chapmanville. French Dingess reportedly fired the first gun at Fort Sumter. The Guyandotte River was reportedly named from the Indian word meaning “narrow bottoms.” Company D, 36th Virginia Infantry, known as the Dare Devils, organized here in May 1861 with Charles I. Stone as captain. Later it combined with Co. C, 36th Virginia Volunteer Infantry and was known as the Logan Wildcats with Hugh Toney as captain. The Battle of Chapmanville Mountain was fought in the fall of 1861 here. Major Davis was wounded and captured and his original is still kept by his relatives. He charged fifty cents a month per pupil and the textbooks were free. A large beech and a large white oak plainly marked a corner trees on the Thomas Huff 850-acre survey made on June 3, 1784.
Stone Branch School (colored), est. 1902
Violet H. Agee, teacher
Kitchen School, est. 1905
Uses three one-room buildings
John Stone said there were a few straggling bands of Indians here when he came to Stone Branch in 1807 but committed no depredations after he settled. John Stone taught the first school in this district and maybe in the county at Stone Branch in 1812. The textbooks were made by him with goose quill pens.
Hugh Thompson School, est. 1916
J.G. Beymer, teacher
One room frame building
A school house erected in 1916 was blown down in a heavy storm, killing John Conley, an old citizen who had taken shelter under the floor. The house was not used for school this year but was rebuilt the following year.
Ed Stone School, est. 1919
Rosa Barker, teacher
One room frame building
One Confederate soldier lived here during the war.
Thomas School, est. 1919
Burley Stollings, teacher
One room frame building
Two Confederate soldiers lived here during the war.
Daisy School, est. 1920
Daisy Pettit, teacher
One room frame house
Source: Local History and Topography of Logan County by J.A. Vickers (Charleston, WV: George M. Ford, State Superintendent, 1927).
Annie Elizabeth Hill, Annie Elizabeth Stollings, Appalachia, Big Creek, Big Ugly Creek, Billy Adkins, Boone County, Brandon Kirk, Charles Stollings, Edward Hill, Ellis Fork, Estep Branch, Ferrellsburg, Fork Creek, Frank Hill, genealogy, history, John Patrick Fowler, Jones Fowler, Lincoln County, Madison, Margery Ann Fowler, North Fork, timber, timbering, West Virginia, Willie Stollings
On June 2, 2004, Billy Adkins and I visited Frank Hill. Mr. Hill, a retired farmer, bus driver, and store keeper, made his home on Ellis Fork of North Fork of Big Creek in Boone County, West Virginia. Born in 1923, he was the son of Edward W. and Annie Elizabeth (Stollings) Hill. Billy and I were interested in hearing about Mr. Hill’s Fowler ancestry and anything he wanted to share about his own life. We greatly enjoyed our visit. What follows is a partial transcript of our interview:
JOHN PATRICK FOWLER (1827-1911)
Grandpap [John P.] Fowler lived at Ferrellsburg at one time. He was a timber specialist, I’d call him, because he always run a timber job and hired lots of men. He’d cut out all of the timber on a farm and then buy another one and cut it. They didn’t make much back then but they could get a little money together.
My grandmaw [Margery Ann Fowler] was born, I’d say, down there at Ferrellsburg. My mother lived there at Ferrellsburg when she was a teenage girl and she told me she’d plowed corn right there in Ferrellsburg Bottom before the highway or the railroad either one came up through there.
Grandpap bought a tract of timber on Big Ugly and he moved to where it was at. That was virgin timber up there. Hadn’t been cut for years. He just followed the work. He went through Big Ugly and over to Fork Creek. He sold out over there to a coal company and they just paid him so much a month. Then later he got over here on North Fork. He lived in a two-room log house just above our place.
Grandpap Fowler was well-liked. He was a pretty good sized man. My mother thought the world of him because he raised my mother. She lost her daddy [Charles Stollings] when she was ten. Her mother died of what they’d call cancer today. My mother had two sisters and a brother younger than her. The baby one was just two years old and that was Willie Stollings. Grandpap Fowler took in all four children.
My mother, she had a third grade education. She could sign her name. She met my dad when he come in that area saw-logging. His name was Edward Hill and he was a timberman. Cut timber all over this country. They’d have contests. They’d drive a stake out there and cut this tree and bet who could drive that stake on down with that tree when it falls. And he won a many a time. He was accurate. He could chop right-handed or he could chop left-handed. Anyway, there’s a record of their marriage in the courthouse down here at Madison. Preacher Ball married them, I believe.
Grandpap [John P. Fowler] had a boy named Jones that lived over on Big Ugly and he was digging coal with a pick, just enough to do tonight and tomorrow, and a rock fell in on him and killed him. And Grandpap had loaned him his pistol ‘cause him and this Johnson wasn’t getting along good. They was neighbors over there. But that was the first man got there to help get this rock off of him. But Grandpap Fowler sent my mother as soon as they buried him over there to get that pistol. She went right up here and crossed the hill and come down Estep Branch and told his wife that Grandpap had sent after that pistol. She give it to her and on her way back when she come off’n the hill here she knew that Grandpap and old man Dan Harmon wasn’t very good friends. And just for meanness, she shot five or six times and that fellow took her for a warrant. And Grandpap had to go over there to Madison Court House and pay a fine to get her out of it. She was nervy, I’ll tell you that.
Hill Store at the mouth of Ellis Fork of North Fork of Big Creek near the Boone-Logan county line. 19 October 2013.
7th West Virginia Cavalry, Allen Spurlock, Appalachia, Battle of Floyd Mountain, Battle of Lynchburg, Battle of New River Bridge, Boone County, Burrell Spurlock, Charles Spurlock, civil war, coal, Eli Spurlock, Elizabeth Spears, Emily Alice Spurlock, Emily Spurlock, Evermont Green Spurlock, farming, genalogy, Hamlin, Henry H. Hardesty, history, Lawrence County, Leander Filmore Spurlock, Lincoln County, Louisa Jane Spurlock, Maria Spurlock, Mary Elizbaeth Spurlock, Mary Spurlock, Methodist Episcopal Church, Native Americans, Ohio, Phoebe Jane Spurlock, Preston Spears, Robert Spurlock, Sarah Ellen Spurlock, Thomas Preston Spears, timber, Union District, Victoria Spurlock, West Virginia, Wirt Spurlock
From “Hardesty’s History of Lincoln County, West Virginia,” published by H.H. Hardesty, we find this entry for Burrell Spurlock, who resided near Hamlin in Lincoln County, West Virginia:
Son of Eli and Mary (Cummings) Spurlock, was born in Boone county, (now) West Virginia, April 14, 1833, and in Lincoln county, January 7, 1857, he wedded Phoebe Jane, daughter of Preston and Elizabeth (Haskins) Spears. The children of this union number twelve, born as follows: Emily, December 17, 1858, died February 21, 1859; Louisa Jane, December 25, 1859; Emily Alice, October 10, 1861, died January 19, 1880; Robert, September 17, 1864; Allen and Wirt, twins, October 25, 1867; Evermont Green, born February 17, 1870; Sarah Ellen, May 20, 1873, died September 22, 1878; Victoria, February 19, 1876; Leander Filmore, June 30, 1878, died December 8, 1878; Maria, March 26, 1880; Mary Elizabeth, July 7, 1883. Mrs. Spurlock was born in Lawrence county, Ohio, June 10, 1840; she has been a member of the Methodist Episcopal Church for fifteen years. A brother of Mrs. Spurlock, Thomas Preston Spears, served in teh late war in the Federal army, and died a prisoner. The subject of this sketch was in the civil war, serving in the Federal army, in Company K, 7th West Virginia Cavalry. He enlisted, March 10, 1864, participated in the battles at Floyd Mountain, New River Bridge, Lynchburg, fighting continuously from Lynchburg to Kanawha valley, and was discharged August 5, 1865. Charles Spurlock, grandfather of Burrell, was born and raised ____. The country then was inhabited mostly by Indians. Burrell Spurlock is a farmer in union district, owning 360 acres of farming land, located on Big Laurel, nine miles from Hamlin. The timber on this land consists of pine, poplar, locust, sugar, maple, beech, hickory, and oak; good orchard; superior cannel and stone coal, and iron ore. Address Mr. Spurlock at Hamlin, Lincoln county, West Virginia.
Source: The West Virginia Encyclopedia, Vol. 7 (Richwood, WV: Jim Comstock, 1974), p. 132.
Adam Lambert, Andrew D. Robinson, Appalachia, B.C. Curry, Big Ugly Creek, Boone County, Burbus Toney, Charles Spurlock, constable, Edley Elkins, education, Fourteen Mile Creek, genealogy, Guyandotte River, Harts Creek, Harts Creek District, Henry H. Hardesty, Hezekiah Adkins, history, Isaac Elkins, James White, Jefferson District, Jeremiah Lambert, Jesse Gartin, John Fry, John H. Brumfield, John Lucas, justice of the peace, Kiahs Creek, Laurel Hill District, Lewis Queen, Lincoln County, Little Harts Creek, Little Ugly Creek, Logan County, Methodist, miller, Rhoda Elkins, Richard Adkins, Richard Elkins, Sarah Elkins, Squire Toney, timber, timbering, Wayne County, West Virginia, William Lucas, William West
From “Hardesty’s History of Lincoln County, West Virginia,” published by H.H. Hardesty, we find this entry for Harts Creek District in Lincoln County, West Virginia:
This is the most southern subdivision of the county. It derives its name from Harts creek, a tributary of the Guyandotte river. On the north is Laurel Hill district, on the northeast is Jefferson, east Boone county, on the south Logan, and on the west Wayne. Guyandotte river flows northwest and divides the district into two nearly equal parts. There are several small streams, among which are Little and Big Harts creeks, Little and Big Ugly creeks, Kiahs creek, and Fourteen Mile creek.
The first settler was Richard Elkins, who reared his cabin in the month of September, 1807. Here he removed his family, and here Charles Spurlock became his first neighbor. Other early settlers were: Esquire Toney, John Lucas, Edley Elkins, John Fry, Hezekiah Adkins, John Brumfield, and Richard Adkins. Rhoda, a daughter of Edley and Sarah Elkins, was the first white child born in the district. The first grist mill was built by James White about the year 1821. It was a small tub-wheel mill, water being the propelling power. Isaac Elkins built the first saw mill in 1847 or 1848. It was constructed on the old sash-saw plan, and had a capacity for cutting from 800 to 1,000 feet per day.
The first school was taught in a log cabin one mile above the mouth of Big Harts creek about the year 1832, but who the teacher was cannot now be ascertained. The date, however, is remembered by an old resident, because it was the year in which he first visited this section. The first house for educational purposes was built near the mouth of Big Harts creek in 1834. It was a five-cornered building, one side being occupied by the ever-present huge fire place. There are now ten public school houses in the district, “some of which,” says an informant, “are in bad condition, but will soon be replaced by frames;” 334 boys and girls attend school in this district.
The first sermon was preached here in the year 1823 by a Methodist minister named William West, and here the same year he gathered a little church, one of the first ever formed in the valley of the Guyandotte river; but of its history or who composed its membership, nothing is known. When the writer asked of an old settler the question: “Who were the first members?” his reply was: “The register is gone, and no one living can tell.” When asked who organized the first Sabbath school, he replied: “There never was one in the district.”
The first township officers were as follows: Supervisor, Burbus Toney; justice of the peace, Jeremiah Lambert; constable, Jesse Gartin; clerk, Andrew Robinson; treasurer, B.C. Curry; school commissioners, Adam Lambert, William Lucas, and Lewis Queen. According to the census of 1880, the population was 1,116.
Source: The West Virginia Encyclopedia, Vol. 7 (Richwood, WV: Jim Comstock, 1974), p. 106-107.
NOTE: I descend from Richard Elkins, John Fry, John H. Brumfield, and Jeremiah Lambert.