Search billions of records on

Chapter 21
Pages 762-767

From the book about Wabasha Co. Minnesota
Compiled by Dr. L. H. Bunnell
Published Chicago by H. H. Hill, Publishers, 1884
Republished Currently by Higginson Books

This township was named in honor of the city of Glasgow, Scotland, there being several Scotchmen in the township and the first settler was a Scotchman. Glasgow is bounded on the north by Pepin and a small portion of Wabasha, on the east by Wabasha and Greenfield, on the south by Highland, and on the west by West Albany. The physical features of this township are very striking. The Zumbro river enters the township through section 31 and runs a very roundabout way in crossing the township, passing through or touching each of the following sections: 30, 29, 20, 21, 28, 27, 22, 15, 14, 11, 12, and leaves the township through section 13. Many small streams both from the north and from the south flow into this river. All along the river the county is very broken, but is interspersed with beautiful valleys all along the little streams. For a greater part the Zumbro is skirted on either side with heavy forests of timber. In most of the hills is to be found plenty of limestone of an excellent quality, which is used to a very large extent for building the foundations for houses and barns. The soil of the valleys is very fertile; it consists of a blackish loam underlaid with a clay subsoil.

Although well supplied with plenty of natural water, the wells of the township are not so very numerous. No water of any consequence can be reached much less of one hundred feet; many fine springs, however, are to be found scattered through the township.


Wm. McCracken, in 1855, a native of Scotland, was the first to break the sod in the township of Glasgow. Very soon after McCracken came to the township Charles Foreman, Hugh McGowen, Hugh and Robert Cochrane, Fred Bernhart, Mm. (sic) Stowman, Henry Smith, and several others, laid personal claim to a portion of this township. The next year this number was increased by John and Wm. Cochrane, Hugh McGinnis, the Ring brothers, Henry Ash, J. B. Roone, and others. Soon after establishing themselves in their new home, in the fall of 1855, Mr. McGowen's wife gave birth to the first white child born in the township. But the life of this child born in the wilderness was of but short duration, it and its mother both dying in a short time after the child's birth. They both were laid to rest within the bosom of mother earth in the same grave. They were the first to depart from this world in this township. In the fall of 1856, Mr. A. Seafer being of the opinion that "he who taketh a wife taketh a good thing," was accordingly bound by that mysterious band which makes man and wife as one. A Catholic priest from St. Paul was called upon to make the two happy hearts beat as one and sent them on their wedded life rejoicing. The first sermon ever preached within the boundaries was preached in the house of Robert Cochrane, in the spring of 1858, by the Rev. B. F. Wharton a Baptist minister. The Baptists still have a society in the township built by the German Methodist society; Rev. Wharton has remained their pastor since the first sermon.

The first and only building built exclusively for religious services was built by the German Methodist society and stands in section 5, built in 1869. The first minister who preached in this house was the Rev. Lampbrecht. Rev. Schmitken is the minister who has charge of this society at present.

For many years the people of Glasgow Township were exclusively occupied in agricultural pursuits until 1861, when Robert Cochrane and A. T. Lansing put in operation a sawmill on Trout brook, and in 1864 Herman Wing concluded to try his fortune among the people by setting up a blacksmith-shop. The first and only postoffice in the township was at the house of Mr. Boyd Fetzer, and he was the first postmaster. After the narrow gauge railroad was built through the township the Wabasha Elevator Company put up an elevator in the township in 1878; Mr. William Foreman has had charge of the warehouse ever since it was started. The firm handles about thirty thousand bushels of grain from this place, and also deals somewhat in live stock.

A very large portion of the population of this township are Germans, with a few Scotchmen and a slight sprinkling of Irish, and now and then an American.

Glasgow township contains an even thirty-six sections of land. Of this amount of land but seven thousand seven hundred and forty-three acres were in cultivation in 1882, with an increase of eight thousand and twenty-on acres for 1883.

The following was taken from the crop reports for 1882: Wheat 39,210 bushels, oats 36,325 bushels, corn 46,100, barley 10,600 bushels, potatoes 8,765, hay 689 tons, apples 341 bushels, wool 451 pounds, cows 349, butter 21,370 pounds.

It appears from the records that the first chairman of supervisors was Thomas Mateer, and the first town clerk was John B. Roome, and the following have held those offices respectively:

1858Thomas MateerJ. B. Roome
1859Hugh McGowenJas. C. Burns
1860Hugh McGowen*Wm. Perry
1861J. F. RoseWm. Perry
1862John E. TuckWm. Perry
1863John E. TuckWm. Perry
1864Daniel PickettA. P. O. Fetzer
1865Thomas MateerJohn E. Tuck
1866Hugh McGowenJohn E. Tuck
1867Hugh McGowenJohn E. Tuck
1868John StewartJohn E. Tuck
1869John StewartJohn E. Tuck
1870John StewartH. McGowen
1871John StewartH. McGowen
1872John StewartH. McGowen
1873John StewartH. McGowen
1874John B. RoomeWm. Foreman
1875Hugh McGowenWm. Foreman
1877Hugh McGowenWm. Foreman
1878Hugh McGowenWm. Foreman
1879Hugh McGowenWm. Foreman
1880Hugh McGowenWm. Foreman
1881Wm. CochraneJacob Howe
1882Wm. CochraneJacob Howe
1883Wm. CochraneJacob Howe

*Resigned. Thomas Mateer appointed.

Near the center of the town, and lying along the banks of Trout brook, is a field of some fifteen acres, known as "Indian field." The aborigines used a portion of this field for burying their dead, and the balance was planted to corn by the squaws. It was rudely inclosed by a brush fence, prtions of which are still to be seen. There are in various parts of the town relics of the former occupants of the soil, reminding the passer-by that, like these now extinct people, they, too, must pass away and yield their loved land and the labor of their hands to others. In the pleasant valleys where the bold warriors with tireless feet pursued the panting deer, and once resounded with the savage war-whoop, is now to be found happy homes and pleasant farms; and as the old settlers sit by the roaring fires of winter, how well do their children love to hear them tell of their trials and hardships of the early times spent in this township.


The township of Glasgow is divided into districts as follows: Nos. 25, 27, 68, 87, 101, a part of 26 and 64, and the most of 102. Educational pursuits were first inaugurated in this township in the summer of 1858 by a Miss Mary Cosgrove. She taught school in a small log house which stood on section 9, near where the brick house now stands in district No. 25. (See district No. 25.) (I don't understand what the book means by this ~ webmaster) In 1858 the people who lived in what is now district No. 25 met and resolved to build a schoolhouse, and in consequence of said meeting the people went to work with a will to build the house. The men turned out en masse, and as a result of their labors a log house was built and covered with home-made shingles, known as clapboards. There being no money to buy lumber for flooring and finishing, each man took a few sack of grain to Read's Landing and traded it for lumber. And in the house thus constructed was the first school in district No. 25 taught, by Miss Mary Cosgrove, which was also the first in the township. Misses Aurora B. Albertson, Theresa Schmaus, Sparks, Darrigan, Lampbrecht, Carrie Landgraff and Robert Monroe are some of the teachers who have taught in the old house. The old house gave way to the present brick house, which was built in 1870, at a cost of eight hundred dollars, on land donated for the purpose by Hugh McGowen. Miss Darrigan taught the first school in the new house, and since then the following have taught there: G. A. Wanger, Miss Landgraff, Robert Wease, William Barry, Miss Olive Taylor (sister of my great-grandfather ~ webmaster), C. S. Mateer, J. E. Gray and W. J. Brown, who is the present teacher. First board of directors were William Cochrane, clerk; Charles Foreman and Hugh McGowen. The present board are as follows: William Foreman, clerk; G. Walker and Thomas Mateer.

District No. 26. A part of it is in Glasgow and the rest of it is in West Albany township. The first schoolhouse built in the district was in Glasgow township. The house was built of logs, in 1861, and stood on section 19. The present house was built in the summer of 1879, at a cost of five hundred dollars, and is on section 13 of West Albany township. The first school in this district was taught by Eliza Stohman, now Mrs. George Albertson. The school was kept in the house of George Hall, who then lived on section 18. Hariet Albertson was the first person who taught in the schoolhouse. J. E. Tuck, Rev. Sturgeon, George Miller, Lesslie Gray, Susan Fetzer, Jennie Durand, Ellen Brown, Jennie O'Neal, James Smith and C. M. Hilliard each have taught in the old house. Ellen Brown taught the first school in the new house, and she was followed by C. M. Barry, J. E. Gray, C. S. Forx, Harry Thornton and Miss Ellen Patten.

District No. 27. The first school in district No. 27 was taught about forty rods west of the present schoolhouse, in an old log house owned by John Bricker, who was also the first teacher. The seats which they used were boards with legs in them. The next year a log schoolhouse was erected on the farm of Adam Peters, near where the present house stands, but before it was finished another term of school was taught. This term was taught by Dora O'Neal in a barn owned by John Schouweiller. After the log house was finished the following were the persons who wielded the birch: John Bricker, Miss Albertson, Frank Hamlen, John B. Murray, G. C. Dawley. The present house was built in 1875, at a cost of eight hundred dollars. The first teacher in the new house was G. C. Dawley, and he was followed by John Bricker, Marey E. Calhoun, J. J. Barry, Katie Darrigan, J. T. Corry, Bridget Costello, Coleman Barry, Nettie Brown, Michael Conroy and Maggie Keating, the present teacher. Each of the above have taught one or more terms. The first board of directors were John Schoeweiller, clerk, Frank Graff and Antony Schouweiller. The present board are Peter Peters, clerk, Antony Schouweiller and Adam Peters.

District No. 68. The first school taught in district No. 28 was taught by Miss Emma Goodrich in the schoolhouse now in the district. The house was built in 1868, and the first school was taught the same year. The following have taught in this district since Miss Goodrich taught the first school: Charles Mateer, Miss Halahan, Miss Webster, Mr. Wharton, Giles Roome, Nancy Rose, Miss Fancher, Miss Hadley, Miss Lampbright, Miss Champine, Carrie Higgins, Miss Brown, Mary A. Roome, Mr. Barry, Mr. Scott, Emma Johnson, Patrick Ryan, Katie Enright, Mary Enright, Mary Durand, Ida Bunn, Miss Wilder, Miss Wheeler, Miss McKune, Miss Brown.

District No. 101 was organized in 1875, and a schoolhouse was built the same fall as a cost of two hundred and fifty dollars.

Miss Clara Rose was the first teacher who taught in this district. She now lives in Kellogg. The following have taught in houses: Levi Emery, Margaret Patten, Marion Sullivan. The first board of directors was M. K. Wolfe, J. S. Harncame and Geo. Licen. This board has been continuously in office since the district was organized.

Districts Nos. 64 and 102 have their schoolhouses in other townships. For their history see townships which contain them.

End of Chapter