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Sadsbury Township
P. O. Box 261; 6 Ramsey Alley
Sadsburyville, 19369

Coateville Area School District

In old records this is sometimes written Sudbury, and it may have been named for Sudbury in the county of Suffolk, England.  The name of Sadsbury occurs as early as June 1, 1708, in a deed for land therein, but the township was not organized till 1717.  That part of the township lying in the Great Valley was taken up at an early date in right of purchases made in England, and that part north of the valley at a somewhat later period.

In 1718 the taxables were but nine in number,-- William Grimson, James Hamer, Thomas Hayward, John Musgrave, William Smith, Moses Musgrave, William Marsh, John Whitesides, and John Moor.  For several years after this Sadsbury and Fallowfield formed one assessment district.  The first township officer mentioned was William Mash (Marsh), who appeared at court Nov. 26, 1717, and was succeeded, 1718, by William Grimson; 1719, by Moses Musgrove; 1720, by William Smith; 1721, by Robert Stanford; 1722, by John Musgrave; 1723, by Gainer Peirce; 1724, by David Hastings; 1725, by Simeon Woodrow; 1726, by John Bowles; 1727, by George Leonard; 1728, by James Swaffer (E. S.) and John Guy (W. S.); 1729, by Amos Williams (E. S.) and John Matthews (W. S.); 1730, John Minshall.

The following petition was presented to the August court, 1728:

"The Petition of the Inhabitants of Sadbury Sheweth That Whereas we your petitioners humbly Conceiving the Great Necessity There is of haveing our Township distinctly Located and bounded from the Township of fallowfield, and further Conceiving the hardship Imposed in upon our Constable and other officers in our Township To serve both in Sadsbury and fallowfield for the Want of ye Two Townships being divided and their bounds Separately Known We, your Petitioners, humbly take Leave to Exhibitt to you how far the Township of Sadsbury, since it was so Called and Settled Extends (viz) The east end beginning in ye Land tha was formerly Nathan Dick's, but now in the possession of Samuel Jones and William Mickle, and from thence a Long ye valley to ye Land and Plantation of Caleb Pierce, being seven miles in Length, and in breadth, three miles Consistent With the Length aforesaid, making the South Mountain the division Line Betwen Sadsbury and fallowfield Now your Petitioners Craves That you Would be pleased to take the premises to your Mature Consideration, and Grant that our township of Sadsbury, may be hereafter Setled, Located and bounded Within the Limits abovesd and that our Constable over seers of ye poor and of high Ways may be no other ways Burthened then To serve as their several and Respective duties may Command within our Township of Sadsbury Exempt and Clear from fallowfield, and your Petitioners Will Gratefully acknowledg ye same.  
"William Mash, Samuel Jones, William Dickie, William Mickle, Caleb Pierce, Samuel Miller, Francis Jones, James Williams, Ritchard Coblen, James Swaffer, William Grimson, Amos Williams, Samuel Jack, Andrew Moore, Robert Boyd, John Henderson, James Boyd, Daniel Henderson, Adam Boyd, Richard Moore, John Minshall.

At a court held Nov. 27, 1728, it was ordered that,--

"Upon the Petition of the Inhabitants of the Township of Sadbury, in the said County, praying that the said Township of Sadbury may be Divided, made into Two Townships and called East and West Sadbury, and that the Township of fallowfield may be separated from Sadbury and made one Intire Township as heretofore it has been, as also that the limitts of ye said Three Townships may be fully Determined.  Its ordered that the said Township of Sadsbury shall be Divided into Two Townships and ye Eastern part thereof called East Sadbury, shall be Bounded as followeth:  Beginning at the South East Corner of Caleb Pierce's Land by Octararoe Creek, thence along the South lines of the Lands late of Isaac Taylor, John Powell, Sarah Weight, the heirs of John Weight, Wm. Marsh, Wm. Grimson, and Nathaniel Dicks, to the South East Corner of the said Dicks' Land, and from thence along the mountains on the south side of the Great Valley, to the settled Western Boundaries of ye Township of Caln, and from thence Crossing the Valley by the west line of ye Land late of William Flemming, to the far side of the plantation, late of Arthur White on the Top of the mountain on the north side of the Valley and from thence to the north side of the Land Surveyed to Francis Worley, and thence along the top of the Ridge of mountains that Divides the Branches of Brandywine from ye Branches of Doe Run and Octararoe to the top of the mountain opposite to ye North East Corner of the Land, late of William Pusey, thence along ye Top of the said mountain to the North East Corner of a Tract of Land late of Thomas Hayward, thence along the East line of the said Tract to ye South East Corner thereof, and from thence along the East line of a Tract of Land Surveyed for the proprietor's use to the South East Corner of ye same, and from thence to the North East Corner of the said Caleb Pierce's Land, and then down the said Caleb Pierce's line to the Begining; 
Upon the erection of Lancaster County, in 1729, the line between the two divisions of the township was made to confirm to the county line.

In 1813 the line between Sadsbury and West Caln townships, at its eastern end, was relocated and settled.  In 1852, Sadsbury was reduced in size by the formation of Valley township, previous to which it extended eastward to the Brandywine at Coatesville.

In 1867 the township was divided by decree of court into two election districts, the Limestone road being made the division line, and the places of voting fixed at Sadsburyville for the eastern division, and the "Swan" for the western division.

The township was further reduced in size by the erection of the borough of Parkesburg, by act of Assembly of March 1, 1872, and by the erection of the borough of Atglen, by decree of court of Dec. 20, 1875.  The latter borough includes within its limits the former village of Penningtonville.

In 1878 the township was divided and West Sadsbury erected, the line being the same that had separated the two election districts since 1867.

The early settlers were a mixture of Friends from England, and of Scoth-Irish Presbyterians.  The Friends came first, and were followed by the Presbyterians.

As a historical item worth preserving, it may be mentioned that about the close of the late war with Great Britain there seems to have been a mania for laying out towns.  John Pettit, who was the owner of a tavern-house on the Lancaster and Philadelphia turnpike road, sold it, in the year 1814, to Abraham Brenneman and others for the sum of $16,000.  They laid out thereon a town, to which they gave the name of "Moscow."  Lots were sold to various persons at prices ranging from $250 to $500, calling for such streets as Cossacks, Wyburg, Alexander, Charlesburg, and others.  One lot was set apart for a church, and another for a seminary.  Fifteen lots, including the tavern-house, and containing altogether about four acres, were sold to Daniel Heister and John Duer for $8000.

The town flourished, however, only on paper.  The plot was gotten up in fine style, and presented an attractive appearance.  The project failed, and the lots which had been purchased for $8000, and on which a prudent money-loaner had invested $3000 on mortgage, were sold by the sheriff for $1300.  Cossacks Street became again the common turnpike-road, and the others returned to the bosom of the farm from which they had sprung.

It was on this property the "Moscow Academy" was subsequently located, and from which it derived its name.

Among other noted citizens of Sadsbury township in the olden time were Col. Andrew Boyd, son of Rev. Adam Boyd, who was, during a part of the Revolutionary war, lieutenant of the county of Chester, a position of much responsibility; John Fleming, Sr., who was a member of the convention which framed the State Constitution in 1776, and also of the Assembly in 1778; Dr. Joseph Gardner, who was an active man among the Revolutionary patriots of Chester County, was three years a member of Assembly, a counselor of the colony in 1779, and a member of the Continental Congress in 1784-85; and John Gardner, son of Dr. Joseph Gardner, who was also active during the war of the Revolution, and was sheriff of the county from 1781-83, to which office he was unanimously elected.

The following were the taxables  in 1753: 


William Armstrong, James Blelock, James Boyd, Thomas Boyd, Andrew Boyd, Matthew Boyd, George Boyd, Thomas Bulls, Jonah Chamberlin, Robert Cowan, Hugh Cowan, Joseph Cowan, Samuel McClellan, James McClellan, David McClure, John Elton, Gideon Erwin, Josiah Erwin, Thomas Davis, Rev. Wm. Foster, William Fulton, John Henry, Joseph Henderson, Robert Hope, Thomas Heslip, Chas. Kinkaid, George Kenny, John Moore, Andrew Moore, William Marsh, Henry Marsh, James Miller, Thomas Maxfield, William Moore, Samuel Martin, Gravner, Marsh, Robert McPherson, Alexander McPherson, Joseph Parke, Esq., William Powell, William Pim, John Lee, John Lee, jr., George Richmond, James Sharp, John Sharp, Andrew Stewart, John Scott, Thomas Truman, John Truman, Joel Willis, James Williams, Joseph Williams, William Wilkins, John Wilkins, Anthony Robertson, George Robison, John Taylor, Andrew Wilson.

History of Chester County, Pennsylvania; Futhey & Cope; Louis H. Everts; Philadelphia; 1881.



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