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Transcription contributed by Martie Callihan 27 March 2005


The History of Warren County Ohio
Part IV Township Histories
Massie Township by Hon. Thomas M. Wales
(Chicago, IL: W. H. Beers Co, 1882; reprint, Mt. Vernon, IN: Windmill Publications, 1992)


The industries of Massie Township are only such as are usually found in districts where the water power and shipping facilities are inadequate for manufacturing enterprises. The first blacksmith shop was started in 1815 by Isaac Wales, on the west bank of Caesars Creek, opposite the site upon which Harveysburg has since been built. A few years later one was started about a mile northeast of Mr. Wales, by James B. Edwards, with whom several persons learned the trade, and carried on the business in Harveysburg after the town was laid out. Some of these are still living in and near the town. Among them were William Ham, Larkin Edwards, Darvin Harris and William Smith.

In 1820 Samuel G. Welch, a son of Samuel Welch, Sr., started a tin shop on his father's farm, west of Harveysburg, where he continued the business for many years and then moved to Harveysburg, where he and his son W. W. Welch, are now engaged in the same business. With few intermissions Mr. Welch has followed the occupation of tinner for sixty-one years, probably the longest period of service of any business man in the township.

The first sawmill was built by Levi Lukens, on Caesars Creek, in 1815, near where he, in 1828, built a gristmill, which has since been twice destroyed by fire, and rebuilt by Abram Herr. It was run successfully until within the last few years.

The first gristmill was built some time before the above by Hugh Tate and brothers. It was built on Jonah's Run, and consisted of one run of stone, the bolting being done by hand. The gristmill that now stands on Caesar's Creek, near Harveysburg, was built in 1839 by Amos and Samuel G. Welch and Thomas M. Wales. It has been run constantly since its erection, and is now the only one in operation in the township. It is forty feet square and three stories high, and works three runs of stone. Since its original owners, it has been successively owned by Isaiah Fallis, John and Thomas Fallis, George Wikle, William Harlan, William Starry, George Ross, Alfred Edwards, and the present proprietor, T. E. Lawrence.

The first bridge on Caesar's Creek was built in 1846 at the present crossing of the Waynesville and Wilmington turnpike. It was built by the county aided by private subscriptions. It was covered, weather-boarded and painted by the county in 1848. On the 7th of January, 1850, it was washed away, and in the same year was replaced by a substantial 120-foot span, arch bridge, which was burned by incendiaries on the 9th of February, 1876. The county then built in its stead the present handsome and substantial iron structure.

The Waynesville and Wilmington Turnpike road was built in 1851-2, under a charter granted by the Legislature in 1839. The incorporators of the company were Webster G. Welch, Turner Welch, John Lukens, Joseph B. Chapman, Wm. Harvey, John M. Hadden, David Evans and Benjamin Satterthwait, of Warren County, and Thomas Hibbin, John B. Pasey, John C. Work, Nathan Linton, Robert Finley, James Dakin, Jonathan Collett, Joseph Doan, Archibald Haynes and Abraham Brook, of Clinton County. The entire length of the road is fifteen miles. It was originally a toll road under the management of the company, but within the present year (1881) it was bought by the county and made a free pike. There are now no toll roads in the township.

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