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December 2002

To Overton’s heroic pioneers, her
brave defenders of the Union and her
faithful sons and daughters,
this volume is most affectionately dedicated.

Clement F. Heverly
Author of Overton: 1810-1910
Photo Scanned from the Original Text


TWENTY-FIVE years ago, when many of the Overton pioneers were yet living, a fondness for the tales of early times which had been created in our youth, led us to have the stories retold that they might be accurately noted and put in permanent form. As a boyish experiment we had the collection published in a booklet, styled "The History of Overton Township." The limited edition was soon exhausted. Since then much additional information has been gathered. To fulfill a promise made our friends, that we would publish an enlarged and complete history of Overton, the year 1910 is chosen for the issuance of such work, it being the centenary of the settling of the town.
It is a duty of pleasure for us to chronicle the deeds of the brave men and women who carved out homes in the wilderness, tell how they lived, struggled and overcome obstacles. The good they did is worthy our remembrance, and we should cherish their memory and keep it bright. We love to recall the scenes of early life and be young again. Eugene J. Hall has put in verse some of these pictures:

From the weather-worn house on the brow of the hill
We are dwelling afar in our manhood today;
But we see the old gables and holly-hocks still,
As they looked long ago, ere we wandered away;
We can see the tall well-sweep that stands by the door,
And the sunshine that gleams on the old oaken floor.

We can hear the low hum of the hard working bees
At their toil in our father’s old orchard, once more,
In the broad, trembling tops of the bright-blooming trees,
As they busily gather their sweet winter store;
And the murmuring brook, the delightful old horn,
And the cawing black crows that are pulling the corn,

We can hear the sharp creak of the farm gate again,
And the loud, cackling hens in the gray barn near by
With its broad sagging floor and its scaffolds of grain,
And its rafters that once seemed to reach to the sky;
We behold the great beams and the bottomless bay
Where the farm-boys once joyfully jumped on the hay.

We can see the low hog-pen, just over the way.
And the long-ruined shed by the side of the road.
Where the sleds in the summer were hidden away
And wagons and plows in the winter were stowed;
And the cider mill, down in the hollow below.
With a long, creaking sweep, the old horse used to draw.
Where we learned by the homely old tub long ago,
What a world of sweet rapture there was in a straw;
From the cider-casks there, loosely lying around,
More leaked from the bung-holes than dripped on the ground.

We beheld the bleak hillsides still bristling with rocks,
Where the mountain streams murmured with musical sound,
Where we hunted and fished, where we chased the red fox.
With lazy old house-dog or loud-baying hound;
And the cold, cheerless woods we delighted to tramp
For the shy, shirring partridge, in snow to our knees,
Where with neck-yoke and pails, in the old sugar camp,
We fathered the sap from the tall maple trees.

And the fields where our plows danced a furious jig,
While we wearily followed the furrow all day,
Where we stumbled and bounded o’er boulders so big
That it took twenty oxen to draw them away;
Where we sowed, where we hoed, where we cradled and mowed
Where we scattered the swaths that were heavy with dew,
Where we tumbled and pitched, and behind the tall load
The broken old bull-rake reluctantly drew.

How we grasped the old "sheepskin" with feeling of scorn
As we straddled the back of the old sorrel mare,
And rode up and down through the green rows of corn,
Like a pin on a clothes-line that sways in the air
We can hear our stern fathers reproving us still,
As the careless old creature "comes down on a hill."

We are far from the home of our boyhood today,
In a battle of life we are struggling alone;
The weather-worn farmhouse has gone to decay,
The chimney has fallen, the swallows have flown,
But fancy yet brings on her bright golden wings,
Her beautiful pictures again from the past,
And memory fondly and tenderly clings
To pleasures and pastimes too lovely to last.

We wander again by the river today;
We sit in the school room o’erflowing with fun,
We whisper, we play, and we scamper away
When our lessons are learned and the spelling is done.

We see the old cellar where apples were kept,
The garret where all the old rubbish was thrown.
The little back chamber where snugly we slept,
The homely old kitchen, the broad hearth of stone,
Where apples were roasted in many a row,
Where our grandmothers nodded and knit long ago.

Our grandmothers long have reposed in the tomb;
With a strong, healthy race they have peopled the land;
They worked with the spindle, they toiled at the loom,
Nor lazily brought up their babies by hand.

The old flint-lock musket, whose awful recoil
Made many a Nimrod with agony cry,
Once hung on the chimney, a part of the spoil
Our gallant old grandfathers captured at "Ti."

Brave men were our grandfathers, sturdy and strong,
The kings of the forest they plucked from their lands;
They were stern in their virtues, they hated all wrong,
And they fought for the right with their hearts and their hands,

From the weather-worn house on the brow of the hill
We are dwelling afar, in our manhood today;
But we see the old gables and hollyhocks still,
As the looked when we left them to wander away;
But the dear ones we loved in the sweet long ago
In a old village church-yard sleep under the snow.

Farewell to the friends of our bright boyhood days,
To the beautiful vales once delightful to roam,
To the fathers, the mothers, now gone from our gaze,
From the weather-worn house to their heavenly home,
Where they wait, where they watch, and will welcome us still,
As they waited and watched in the house on the hill.

Towanda, Pa.
March 10, 1910




OVERTON is so called in honor of Edward Overton, Sr., a native of England and distinguished member of the Bradford County Bar, who gave valuable assistance to the people in their effort to secure the erection of a new township, and held large tracts of land within the bounds.
Overton is triangular in shape, and is situated geographically between the township of Barclay on the north and northwest, from which it is separated by the Schrader branch of the Towanda Creek: Monroe and Albany on the east; LeRoy on the west; and the townships of Elkland and Forks in Sullivan county on the south. The township is one of the largest in the county and contains an area of about forty-five square miles. It is well watered by the west branch of Towanda Creek, the Schrader and its branches in the north, and by Black Creek, Level Branch, Lick Creek and other streams, which flow southward out of the county. The northern and western portion of the township is generally mountainous and unsettled. It was originally covered with forests of hemlock, cherry, pine and hard wood, which during the past thirty years have been manufactured into lumber, with the exception of timber unmolested on several tracts in the southwest corner. The central and southeastern part of the township is hilly and contains many excellent farms. Agriculture, dairying and stock-raising is here the principal business of the people, and is conducted successfully. The soil is well adapted to grass, and corn, oats, potatoes and buckwheat are gown profusely. No mineral deposits of value have yet been discovered, although it is believed that coal and copper will be found in paying quantities.
The people are mostly of German and Irish descent, and are noted for their industry and honesty. Their great pride is in their farms, which, once covered with stumps and stones, are now so free there from, that all kinds of machinery is used on them. Good blooded stock has been introduced, and neat and spacious buildings erected. Due attention is given to the schools and churches, and Overton can boast of a greater number in proportion to population, than any other township in the county. By the census of 1860, Overton contained 407 inhabitants; in 1870, 550; in 1880, 503; in 1890, 775, in 1900, 655. The marked increase in 1890 was owing to the large number of persons employed in the several lumber mills, no longer in operation. Overton village, pleasantly situated within one-half mile of the Sullivan county line, is the only village in the township.


At the February Court of Quarter Sessions, Bradford county, 1852, the petition of Edward McGovern, Daniel Heverly, William Waltman, B.F. Bedford, Daniel O’Neill, Owen McCann, Isaac Streevy, Thomas Grimes, John Flynn, Jacob Musselman, John Meade, Maurice Sullivan, John Morressy, Jacob Haverly, William Luce, William Annis, Reuben Rinebold, Henry Heverly, Timothy Fleming, Curtis R. Haverly, Reuben Musselman, Eli Heverly, Lewis Swanger, Jacob Hottenstein, James Molyneux, John Molyneux, Daniel Heverly, Jr., Edward Rinebold, Michael Ronan, James Frawley, Patrick Frawley, John Frawley, James Sheahan, William Flynn, Patrick Britton, and Cornelius Guervin – was presented, asking for the formation of a new township out of parts of Albany, Franklin and Monroe and to be called Danville. Whereupon, the court appointed E. G. Nichols, Thomas Elliott and N. N. Betts, commissioners, to enquire into the expediency of erecting or setting off such new township. The commission reported favorably, but there was opposition to the new township and exceptions were filed.
The work had to be done over again. Another petition signed by Edward McGovern, James Sheedy, Cornelius Guervin, Patrick Callehan, Owen McCann, Andrew Wilt, Jacob Hottenstein, James Heverly, John Heverly, Jacob Haverly, Lewis Swanger, Daniel O’Neill, William Waltman and Francis Bedford - was presented, asking for the said new township to be called Overton. Nichols, Elliott and Betts were continued as commissioners. They made report December 9, 1852, as follows:

"The undersigned Commissioners appointed at September term (1852) to examine and report in regard to the propriety of setting off a new township from parts of Albany, Monroe and Franklin, said new township to be called Overton, report that being sworn according to law and having made the necessary surveys, they conclude that the said township is necessary, and to set if off in accordance with the petition would be right; and the following description according with the petition and with their survey, viz: Beginning at the S.E. corner of LeRoy at the county line of Bradford and Sullivan; thence by said line South 78 degrees East 11 miles and 115 rods to stone corner on lands of James and Morris Sullivan, 25 rods S. 78 degrees from the crossing of their W. line; thence N. 12 ¾ degrees West 8 miles and 276 rods to stone corner in the Schrader Branch at the intersection of the Monroe and Franklin line near William Northrup’s : thence up the middle of Schrader Branch, 11 miles and 80 rods to the East line of LeRoy township; thence by said line South 27 ½ degrees West 1 mile and 180 rods to the beginning. And the undersigned refer to the map accompanying the report, on which map they have set down the courses and distances of the new township as they have in this report recommended it to be set off all of which they report.

E. G. Nichols
Thomas Elliott
N. N. Betts

The report was finally confirmed by the Court, February 12, 1853, establishing the township of Overton.
But one change has been made in Overton territorially. In 1874 a triangular strip was taken from the northeast side and given to Monroe. The line, in making this alteration, began at an oak corner (on the line between Overton and Monroe) 100 rods north of the south corner of Monroe, running in a straight line northwest five miles and 1,600 feet to the Schrader. The distance from the old to the new line at Schrader was about three-fourths of a mile. By this change the area of Overton was reduced about two square miles.
Overton, as Pennsylvania territory, has been included in the following counties: Northampton, from 1752 to 1772; Northumberland, from 1772 to 1786; Luzerne, from 1786 to 1812; since 1812 Bradford. Under township jurisdiction, Overton has been a part of Wyalusing, Wysox, Burlington, Canton, Towanda, Asylum, Franklin, Monroe and Albany. While never surveyed, but as platted by the Susquehanna Company(Connecticut claimants), Overton included the township of Mexham and parts of Bath and Jay. The last two were granted to John Spalding of Sheshequin in 1795.

Of Unknown Age and Origin
The "Red Man" populated northern Pennsylvania for countless centuries
before the coming of the whites. His artifacts can still be found
in fields, along streams and in the forest.
Photo Courtesy of Carol Brotzman Who Found It on Her Farm in Laceyville, PA

The Red Man.

When white man first visited this country he found the American Indian. How long he and his progenitors had been here is not known. Centuries have elapsed, possibly thousands of years, since this country was first peopled. Race had succeeded race, and villages gone to decay and ruin, hundreds of years before the advent of the white man. Overton was once the home of the Red Man. Not that he had any villages here, but it was his favorite hunting and camping ground. By many springs have been found pestles, skinning knives, arrow heads, spear heads, stone hammers and other implements, things of the Indian’s handiwork, and proof of his presence. The richest find of various implements has been around Indian Spring at the head of what was once a great swamp, on the farm of Daniel Heverly. Here, evidently, the Indian camped for many days at a time, and lay in wait for deer and bear, which he killed with his spear or bow and arrow.
Editor's Note: One of the best assemblies of northern Pennsylvania Native American artifacts is the Campbell Collection owned by the late Clair Campbell of Milan, PA.


The Pioneers.

What is now Overton was a great and unexplored wilderness in Luzerne county, when Daniel Heverly carved his way hither and made the first settlement in 1810. Before this date, the foot of white man had scarcely trod any part of this extensive domain.
Daniel Heverly, a Pennsylvania German, born in 1764, having been induced by the extraordinary opportunities offered in the "new country," sold the old homestead in Lehigh county for nine hundred pounds, Pennsylvania currency, and arranged for his emigration. Accordingly, in 1806, with his wife, five sons and two daughters, a heavy covered wagon, loaded with household goods and light farming implements, two horses, two cows and some young stock, he set out to find the rich lands, "flowing in milk and honey." His route was by the way of Williamsport, thence up Lycoming Creek to Canton, where he found Jacob Granteer, another German with whom he remained several days. Proceeding down Towanda Creek, when near Greenwood, where John Schrader lived, his team got fast in the mud. A passerby informed Schrader that "there was a Dutchman stuck in the mud and need assistance." Schrader, being German and well disposed toward one of his kind, took his team and relieved the unfortunate pilgrim and offered him entertainment. Learning that his guest had a "long sock" full of glittering pieces, Schrader’s oily tongue ran freely and pictured Heverly in "the land of promise," with gold enough to make him prince of all. Heverly drank his flattery, contracted with him to work his farm and remained.

After working for Schrader two or three years, upon the location of the old Berwick & Elmira turnpike, Heverly contracted to build several sections of that road, which passed through Southern Bradford. He was well pleased with the land which he found in the Overton basin, and thinking that the country would soon be settled along this road, he took up a tract of 640 acres. He had been told that the same was vacant land, and that it was only necessary for him to survey and occupy it to hold it. Heverly, with the aid of his sons, fulfilled his part of the contract in building the road, but is said to have been cheated out of most of his pay. Schrader also took advantage of his credulity and generous nature and swindled him out of much of his money.

Heverly built a log house and moved in with his family in 1810. His cabin stood at the southern end of the orchard on the place of Mrs. Angeline Heverly, near the road. He made the first clearing opposite the Conklin house, on lands of now Francis Osthaus. Thinking these lands too wet to produce well, he soon after commenced other clearings farther north, on the opposite side of the road. Here, after having cleared away the timber and brush, he set out the first orchard in Overton, some of the trees of which are still bearing fruit. In the midst of many surrounding dangers, this bold pioneer lived, 14 miles from his nearest accessible neighbor. There were a few settlers over in Albany, but no means of forming an acquaintance, as there were no roads or paths between the two places. For three years Mrs. Heverly did not see a single female face, yet she was not disheartened or even thought of fleeing from the lonely spot.

Learning that a family had settled over in Sullivan county, on what is known as the Wanck place, Mr. Heverly and his wife set out on Sunday through the woods in quest of their new neighbors. They found them comfortably situated in a l ittle log house and were most gladly welcomed. While Mr. Wanck sat in the door entertaining his quest, a bear was discovered in a briar patch a short distance away. There was no gun at hand and the game was deemed too valuable to let escape. Heverly said he thought he could bring the beast down with a stone and would make the trial at least. Creeping carefully along, he was nearly upon the bear before being discovered. Bruin rose up, gave a grunt, but in the next instant received a piece of rock against his head, which felled him to the earth. Heverly followed his advantage and soon pounded the life out of the bear.

When Mr. Heverly came to Overton the woods was full of wild beasts, panthers, bears and wolves, which were very troublesome. They frequently destroyed his sheep, calves and hogs, but whenever he got a chance at them, their lives paid the penalty for their depredations. Not infrequently would Heverly and his boys tree a panther. Should they thus bring their wily foe at bay at nightfall, they would build a fire at the base of the tree and keep it burning all night, so as to keep him from escaping, when upon the dawn of morning they would bring him down with a rifle ball. Near where Fred Heverly now lives, Heverly discovered a bear in a hemlock tree, and having no gun with him opened battle with stones. One well sent struck bruin on the head and brought him to the ground, where he was quickly dispatched with a club.

Mr. Heverly after a few years built a second log house, near the present residence of Mrs. Angeline Heverly, and lived there several years. Subsequently he erected a double hewed-log house on the "Four Corners," a few rods below the second one, over a spring. Here he lived the remainder of his days. Mr. Heverly soon made an opening in the wilderness, and his first crops met the requirements of the family. Altogether, he cleared some sixty-five or seventy acres. He occupied his lands unmolested until 1827, when they were sold for taxes and bought by Dr. Weston of Towanda. Weston’s tax-title was subsequently bought by Daniel Heverly, 2nd, thus securing an undisputed title to the whole. Mr. Heverly gave his improvement to his son Daniel (upon the payment of a certain amount to the heirs), who transferred the title to his son, Eli , whose widow now occupies the place.

Mr. Heverly possessed all the characteristics of the ideal pioneer. He was courageous, could endure privations and hardships without becoming disheartened, and was resourceful in providing for every emergency. Though not a large man, he was in many respects a very remarkable man. He stood about five feet seven, had a well-knit frame and weighed 160 pounds. He was athletic and knowing no fear, unfortunate was the victim that stirred his ire. At the age of sixty years he would place his hands upon a horse’s hips and spring astraddle his back. He was a Hercules in strength, as the following will illustrate. About the year 1815, John D. Saunders erected a saw-mill on the South Branch of Towanda Creek. All the strong men for many miles around were at the raising to put the heavy timbers in place. As was common, in those days, a lifting contest was engaged in. Heverly out lifted every other man present, and one heavy timber was raised only by Amasa Kellogg, besides himself.

Heverly had the true German grit and when thoroughly fired feared neither man nor beast. One Baker was well pleased with some of the lands claimed by Heverly, and concluded he would occupy them. He had been advised not to do so as the "old gentleman," then 70, would be after him. Baker only laughed at the old man’s bravery, and boastingly remarked that "if he scared him he would only have one more to scare and that would be the devil." Baker began chopping on the old gentleman’s possessions. He only began, for as soon as the venerable German discovered him, he armed himself with a knot, and told bravo to move to other quarters, and curious to say, he did not wait for a second invitation. The old hero concluded that the devil was not a very brave being, if he could not demonstrate more pluck than one of his imps.
Heverly was a genius. He had learned the art of weaving, and when he came to Overton he brought his loom with him, manufacturing the cloth for his own and other families. He was also something of a tailor and made his own clothes. He had a knowledge of surgery, and whenever an accident happened in the neighborhood he was called to set the broken bones. For years he was the only person in the settlement, who could thus come to the relief of an unfortunate neighbor. With a butcher-knife and saw he manufactured the window sash for his house, and in many other ways exercised his ingenuity. He had a pretty good education in German, and sang with comforting satisfaction.

"Grandfather Heverly," as he was commonly known, had a great pride in raising fruit, and when the families following him, came in, his orchard bore apples, peaches, plums and cherries in great abundance. He was generous to a fault, and would not only ask the neighbors for miles around to come and eat cherries and fruit with him, but would tell them to take what they wanted. After he had gathered his fruit, when the boys and girls, of whom he was very fond, would call to see him, he would invite them to go up stairs and help themselves to apples. The last years of his life he lived alone, and one of his greatest pleasures was the visits of young people, whom he always made happy by some little gift. He learned to speak English, but was "very dutchy" to those who remember him. He never wore whiskers, and his grandson, Daniel Heverly, in his later years, is said to bear a very striking resemblance to him.

Like all men, Mr. Heverly was not without his faults. His German temper and determined will sometimes led him to be severe with his family, but when the storm had passed he made proper amends for his conduct. He was noted for his benevolence and honesty. Generally too credulous, he was sometimes taken advantage of by unprincipled men. His career is most interesting, and Daniel Heverly must be remembered as one of the truest and most heroic pioneers of Northern Pennsylvania. He died March 29, 1844, aged 80 years.

Many years before moving to Bradford county, Mr. Heverly had married Miss Catharine Ott, a lady of many excellent qualities. She was a neat and dutiful housewife, sharing the privations and hardships of her husband, like a heroine, with true Christian fortitude. Among other things, she had a fondness for flowers, and her flower-beds were things of beauty. Her handsomely decorated dishes, which she had brought from Lehigh county, were the admiration of the neighborhood, and used with great care. Mrs. Heverly is remembered as being tall and good form. "Aunt Betsy" Streevy says: "When ‘old mother Heverly’ died I felt very sad, and when we buried her it seemed as if I were attending the funeral of my own mother." Her demise occurred January 20, 1831, at the age of 67 years. The children of Daniel and Catharine Heverly were – Betsy, Catharine, Hannah, John, Daniel, Jacob, Christian and Henry, all of whom were born in Lehigh county.

Betsy Heverly married Leonard Streevy in Lehigh county, subsequently moved to Overton with her family and died there, June 1, 1827.

Hannah Heverly came to Bradford county with her parents, and while living with them at Greenwood married Jacob Granteer of Canton. Her children were – Eli, Eleeta, (Mrs. Ozias Kilburn), and three others, who died in childhood. She died at Canton about 1819, and is buried, in the old cemetery on the Granteer farm.

Editor's Note: We have reason to believe, based on an old handwritten note found in the papers of John Lambert, that Hannah was actually buried at the Millview Cemetery off Route 87 in Sullivan County, PA. Or, perhaps she was interred on the Granteer farm, and then moved later. The Millview Cemetery is also known as the "Warren Cemetery", since it was the burial place for the original Warren family settlers and many of their descendants. In August 2007, Michael Dempsey provided a copy of the following note found in the papers of John W. Lambert of Overton, dated to 1894. In it, he references the Warren family buried at the Millview cemetery. The Lambert and Warren families were ancestrally related by marriage. The listed interments are: John and Mary Warren, the founders of the local Warren family; then comes Hannah (Warren) Heverly, their daughter and first wife of Christian Heverly; then "Sharlet" Warren, another daughter [the age is incorrect, since she was born in 1810 and is believed to have died before 1820, but that is not relevant to our point here]; and finally "Hanah Grantere", daughter of Daniel and Catherine Heverly and wife of Jacob Granteer. Why would a Grantere be buried here? Well, Hannah (Heverly) Granteer was a sister of Christian Heverly, husband of Hannah Warren. Note, as reported below, that Christian arranged for the body of his first wife to be carried by ox sled from her death location to the Warren Cemetery in Millview. It may be that, after the construction of the Millview Cemetery location, these families preferred to have their relatives and ancestors interred there, even if it meant relocating a grave. We are indebted to Carol Brotzman for correctly identifying the Granteer surname on this old note.

Note on Warren Family Burials
Papers of John Lambert
Dated 1894
Photo by Michael Dempsey
Who Obtained a Copy from the Lambert Family Historical Documents in the Possession of Mary Lambert in august 2007

Catharine Heverly came to Bradford county with her parents, and while living at Greenwood married John Granteer, brother of Jacob, of Canton. Her children were – Betsy (Mrs. Philander Case), Horinda (Mrs. Samuel Conklin), Catharine (Mrs. William Wilcox), Nancy (Mrs. Jesse Conklin) and Henry. She died at Canton in 1831, and is buried in the old cemetery with her sister.

John Heverly (1788-1874)
Son of Daniel and Catherine (Ott) Heverly
Photo Scanned from the Original Text

Almira (Kellogg) Heverly
Wife of John Heverly
Photo Scanned from the Original Text

John Heverly was born in Lehigh county, March 14, 1788, and came to Bradford county with his parents in 1806. He worked with his father upon the old turnpike, and upon locating in Overton, assisted him in making a break in the wilderness. He took up lands now included in the farms of Mahlon Chase and Mrs. Arvilla Carner. On April 4, 1816, he was united in marriage with Miss Almira, daughter of Amasa and Eunice Kellogg of Monroe. At the time of his marriage he had about four acres cleared. The next year thereafter he built a log house, moving into it before it had either doors and glazed windows, hanging up sheets to keep out the rain and snow. Mr. Heverly was required to go as far as Mr. Woodruff’s, below Monroeton, to get sufficient help to raise his house. This building stood two and three rods back of the framed house, yet standing on the place, which he erected in 1838 and occupied until his death.
Mr. Heverly was a pioneer, indeed. When there was only a foot-path and glazed trees to mark the way, he went to Muncy, a distance of 35 miles, on horse-back to mill. His trip required a space of two days and he carried provisions with him to eat on the road. The woods were full of wolves, and after Mr. Heverly began housekeeping, many were the nights, that he and his wife were kept awake by these grey denizens. The brutes would gather in the swamps nearby, and so numerous were they that "they fairly made the glass in the windows shake with their hideous howls." To Mr. & Mrs. Heverly, in their lonely abode, this was most unwelcome music and horrifying even to those possessed of the stoutest hearts.
Mr. Heverly paid as high as two dollars per pound for tea and went to Meansville (Towanda) after it. He worked out a great deal in the vicinity of Greenwood and Monroeton, and was sometimes short of provisions. Amasa, his eldest child, says: "I remember when for a period of three or four days our only food was baked potatoes; father was away earning flour. After a time father managed to raise a beef each year. The hide was taken to Irvin’s tannery at Towanda and manufactured into leather. Our eyes sparkled with gladness when the leather was ready for father, that he might make our winter shoes. Deer were very plentiful, and father was only required to take his gun with him when he went after the cows to kill enough to keep us in meat." One day Mr. Heverly’s dogs treed four panthers, an old female and her three whelps. He succeeded in killing them all, though he had to dispatch the fourth with a club, his ammunition having given out.
John Heverly was a quiet, fair-minded citizen, who never meddled with the affairs of his neighbors. His time was diligently spent upon his farm, which was nearly all improved at the time of death. Before the close of the War of 1812 he was drafted, but never called out. Mr. Heverly was a Christian, and a man whose integrity was never questioned. He departed this life, August 11, 1864, in his 77th year.
Almira Kellogg Heverly was born August 21, 1799, at Hillsdale, Columbia county, N.Y. and came to Albany, Bradford county, with her parents in 1813. She says they were ten days on the road, finding no roads in some places, and not a single bridge over the creeks from Towanda. Mr. Kellogg’s wagon was the first to pass up the South Branch of Towanda creek from Monroeton. She lived with her parents until 1816, when she was married to Mr. Heverly and went to the wilds of Overton to share the hardships of pioneer life with the man of her choice. She was the second female to come to the new settlement, and bore her part nobly and well. She employed her time diligently, and did her own weaving and for others. Her loom was kept in operation for a long period and even in her declining years. Mrs. Heverly took great delight in visiting the new-comers and made their homes in wilderness as pleasant as possible by her presence and encouraging words. She spoke English while her neighbors spoke German, and, curious to say, they soon learned to understand each other and enjoyed visiting together. In sickness she was very kind, and was always ready to assist the distressed. Early in life she embraced religion and joined the Methodist Episcopal church, of which she continued a faithful and devoted member until her decease, May 18, 1880, aged nearly 81 years. The children of John and Almira Heverly were –

Amasa, born April 11, 1817; married Betsy Ann Betts; died April 29, 1888, in New Albany, Pa.

James, born September 3, 1819; married Sally Rinebold; died October 19, 1866, in Overton.

Eunice, born February 6, 1822; married George Irvine of Monroe; died August 14, 1903, at Liberty Corners, Pa.

Catharine, born November 26, 1824; married Gideon Boyles; died October 20, 1856, in Overton.

Maria, born July 12, 1827; married Solomon Wayman; died September 29, 1886, at New Albany, Pa.

Orlando, born November 26, 1829; married Hannah Warren; died November 15, 1891, at Tekamah, Neb.

Adeline, born February 21, 1832; married Sophronus Paris; living at Tekamah, Neb.

Almira, born May 1, 1834; married Orange M. Chase; died March 7, 1885, at Overton.

Oliver Delanson, born October 6, 1832; married Sarah Tompkins; died September, 1906, at Craig, Neb.

Mary Ann, born February 24, 1839; married George B. Neal; died April 17, 1878, in Towanda, Pa.

Daniel Heverly (1795-1874) and
Magdalene Wilt Heverly (1790-1870)
Photo Scanned from the Original Text

Daniel Heverly, born in 1795, came to Bradford county with his parents. His boyhood days were spent in the same manner as were his brother John’s. When becoming a young man he took up land included in the farm of his son, Daniel, began a clearing and erected a little log house, which stood on the present site of Daniel Heverly’s horse-barn. He had learned the trade of millstone cutter, and worked with the Northrup’s over on Millstone Run for some time, getting out mill-stones.

Mr. Heverly was quite a noted hunter, and is said to have been a "dead shot" on deer. He killed many panthers and bears, and had many narrow escapes in his encounters with wild beasts. On one occasion he came upon a large bear. He fired, but only wounded the animal. A fierce battle at once ensued between his dog and the bear. Before he could re-load the bear had got the advantage, and not wishing to lose his dog, he ran up to the bear and caught him by the hind legs to draw him off. The bear then turned upon him and he fought him off as best he could, till the dog could again close in by a new hold on the bear’s heels. Thus the battle went on for some time until the courageous hunter was nearly exhausted. Finally, their struggles brought them near an old tree, when Heverly seized a hemlock knot and dealt the bear several lusty blows across the head, ending the contest.

Once Mr. Heverly’s little dog saved him from destruction by a panther. At the time of the circumstance, he was living where his son, Daniel, now does. He had borrowed his father’s oxen to go to mill, but did not reach home until after dark. Having returned his father’s oxen, before leaving his barn, he lighted a straw torch that he might avoid getting into the mud, as he had to cross the swamp between the two places. By the time he had reached the swamp, the torch had burned low. Hearing a jump behind him, he turned around and as he did so, was compelled to drop the torch, as it had burned to his hand. The remaining fragments gave one more flash, and he beheld a ferocious beast with large, glaring eyes before him. He was terribly frightened, but had presence of mind enough not to take his eyes off the dreaded beast. He called to his dogs, but they did not distinguish his voice. Again and again, he called, and finally the little dog made such a fuss that Mrs. Heverly let him out. He was soon to his master, and stood by him, keeping up such a lively barking that the panther finally walked off. The beast had evidently followed Heverly some distance, but did not dare attack him while he was with the oxen or had fire in his hand.
In 1818, Mr. Heverly married Hattie Talady, but their domestic relations not proving harmonious, they separated. Subsequently, in 1821, he was united in marriage with Miss Magdalene Wilt of Lehigh county. Their house was always a home for the new comers, until they could get started for themselves. Mr. Heverly had a pride in his fruit, and was generous. Not unlike many persons of his time, he was superstitious and a strong believer in witches. He also had his mineral bottle and sought for gabled treasures. He firmly believed that the Overton hills were full of gold, silver and other minerals. He dug numerous pits, but never realized his fanciful dreams.
Mr. Heverly was naturally ingenious. He purchased a second-hand set of blacksmith tools, erected a small shop near his house, and did "considerable tinkering," which was a great accommodation to the people at that time, as they were required to go over to Matthews’s near Greenwood, to get their plow-points sharpened, tools repaired, etc. He manufactured pine shingles, and drew to Monroe and Towanda, where he exchanged them for merchandise.
Mr. Heverly was a ready conversationalist, and had a fondness in rehearsing old-time events for the entertainment of his friends. He was a large land owner, and at one time had fully 800 acres. He gave each of his daughters a farm of 50 acres, and his sons the same or more. He occupied his first place some thirty-five years, then sold to his son,
Daniel, and moved to the farm now occupied by his son Jacob’s heirs, where he died February 11, 1874, aged 79 years. He was an honest man, and member of the M. E. church.

Mrs. Heverly, known as "Aunt Modaline," was a quiet soul of kindly nature. She was a model housewife, "famed for the "good things" she prepared for the table. Her unexcelled bread and luscious honey were a luxury that made many a youth smack his lips with joy and wish that such a good woman might never die. About her home were beautiful flowers of many varieties, which were nourished with great care. She was truly a good woman, a faithful member of the Lutheran church, and was loved and esteemed by all who knew her. Her death occurred August 29, 1870, aged 80 years. The children of Daniel and Magdalene Heverly were-----

Catharine, born January 18, 1822; married Reuben Rinebold; died March 18, 1867.

Elizabeth, born June 29, 1823; married Sylvester Chapman; died May 2, 1897.

Eli, born February 20, 1825; married Angeline Rinebold; died January 16, 1869.

Hannah, born February 22, 1827; married first William Waltman, second Jeremiah Kilmer, third Ezekiel D. Jones; died November 5, 1905.

Daniel, born October 25, 1828; married Jane Elizabeth Heverly; both living, after a married life of sixty years.

Henry, born December 16, 1830; married Lovina Hottenstein; died April 22, 1863.

Jacob, born October 16, 1832; married Mary Dimock; died March 16, 1909.

Mary Ann, the youngest, died in the 40’s aged about 6 years.

Jacob Heverly, born in 1797, came to Overton with his parents. Being crippled by lameness, he learned the trade of shoe-making and was reputed a good workman. He took up lands occupied by Fred Haverly, and erected a log house. Securing the services of Moses and Ezra Kellogg of Monroe, he had about fourteen acres cleared. He was unmarried, and lived upon the place until the summer of 1826, when he took the fever and died. He was the first funeral sermon preached in Overton.

Christian Heverly
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Christian Heverly, born September 9, 1800, was ten years old when he came to Overton with his parents. He, too, passed through the exciting scenes of a pioneer boy. The following will illustrate: "His father kept a couple of bear dogs and two or three guns. The woods were full of wild beasts and the cattle roamed in the woods. It was the duty of one of the boys to take a gun and the dogs, before evening, find the cows and bring them in. On the occasion mentioned in the narrative it fell upon Christian to go in search of the stock. He had only reached a short distance from the clearing, when the dogs came upon a large bear and ran him up a tree, Christian was young and timid, and, accordingly, moved with caution, not knowing what sort of game he was going to find. Bruin was discovered and the lad got in position to fire. Resting his gun, he pulled the trigger and down came the huge beast. The father having heard the dogs, knew by their barking that they had treed a bear, and fearing that the boy might make bad work of it, took a second gun and hastened to the tumultuous spot. Coincidentally he fired at the very moment as did the boy. Both balls had penetrated the beast, but had not produced the desired effect. When bruin struck the ground the dogs rushed upon him, one of which he seized in his powerful arms and began squeezing his life out. Not wishing to be deprived of his fighter, Mr. Heverly pulled his hunting knife and took a hand in the battle. Bruin fought desperately and the old hunter gave him several lunges, fairly cutting his vitals away before he would release the dog. The bear was killed, but the dog received injuries from which he never recovered."

In 1819 Mr. Heverly married Hannah Warren of Sullivan county, and began life for himself upon a tract of land now occupied by B.J. Hausknecht. He built a log house near a spring, below the orchard yet standing on the place. Here he lived until 1836, when he erected his framed house – the first in the township – and began living therein. Mrs. Heverly died in July, 1821, and her remains were taken to the Warren homestead on an ox-sled for interment. The roads were too rough to allow the passage of a wagon at that time. On November 27, 1822, Mr. Heverly was united in marriage with Miss Martha, daughter of Philip and Martha Kilmer of Fox, Sullivan county.
The house of Christian and Martha Heverly was the home for the Methodist preachers, both being church members of that denomination. "Aunt Martha," as she was commonly called, was a very neat housekeeper, and Mr. Heverly had a commendable pride in keeping every-thing in order about the place. His buildings were the neatest and best in the neighborhood. In 1832 he erected the first framed barn in the township.
Mr. Heverly was very industrious. He cleared up a large and handsome farm, which he occupied until his death. He was very liberal, enjoyed company and took delight in spinning his yarns. He had a fine orchard of cherry and apple trees, some of which yet bear fruit. He was a man of much pride, inclined to egotism, but was public spirited, and a worthful and highly respected citizen. He died December 27, 1860, in his 61st year. His wife, Martha, born February 16, 1801, was an excellent Christian lady, highly esteemed by all; she died June 15, 1873.

Hannah Warren
First Wife of Christian Heverly
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Editor's Note: In August 2007, Carol Brotzman made the astute observation that this picture is more likely that of Martha Kilmer, the second wife of Christian Heverly, since Hannah (Warren) Heverly, his first wife, died in 1821.

Unto Christian and Hannah Heverly one child was born:

William L., born October 27, 1820; married Almira Old; died in Towanda, Pa., June 23, 1894.

The children of Christian and Martha Heverly were:

Hannah, born September 20, 1825; married lst Samuel Annable, 2nd Eldaah Landon; died November 6, 1904, at Canton, Pa.

Martha, born February 9, 1828; married Myron Annable; died July 15, 1852, at Canton, Pa.

Catharine, born July 9, 1830; married Horatio G. Ladd; died September 18, 1882 at New Albany, Pa.

Celinda, born April 21, 1833; married Edward Rinebold; living in Towanda, Pa.

Christian LeRoy, born June 8, 1835; married 1st Harriet Heverly, 2nd Eliza Place, 3rd Lydia Crandall; died February 28, 1910, at New Albany, Pa.

Three other children were born, but died young.

Henry Heverly
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Henry Heverly, born November 24, 1803, came to Overton when a child with his parents. His boyhood days were spent upon his father’s farm. When a lad, his father used to take him with him in his searches for the cows, as he had better hearing and could hear the tinkle of the cow-bell. After he had learned the woods he was sent alone. On January 7, 1823, Mr. Heverly was joined in marriage with Miss Rosina Kilmer of Fox, Sullivan county. The wedding was held at the home of the bride’s parents. Ezra Kellogg went after the minister, Rev Daniel Wilcox, who performed the marriage ceremony. A supper was furnished on the occasion, and in the evening a sermon preached.

Rosina (Kilmer) Heverly
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Mr. Heverly took up lands adjoining his brother Christian’s and put up a hewed-log house, the first one in the neighborhood. His farm was in Sullivan county, and his house also stood across the line. Mrs. Heverly said: "The woods were full of wild beasts, and it was not safe to go from one house to another without a gun. The first hog we had, the bears killed and were required to go to the "Forks" for another. Log pens were built for the hogs, sheep and calves, which were yarded in the evening to save them from destruction."
Mr. Heverly was noted for his great strength. He was quiet, and never at variance with his neighbors. He gave his time to the improvement of his farm, which was one of the best in the neighborhood. He and his wife were two of the original members of the Methodist society formed in Overton. His death occurred September 5, 1871, aged 68 years. Mrs. Heverly, born January 1, 1803, was a devout Christian, kind mother and neighbor: she was the last survivor of the Overton pioneers. She died January 23, 1889, aged 86 years. The children of Henry and Rosina Heverly were:

Hannah, born January 1, 1824; married John Molyneux; died January 12, 1901.

Henry, born April 27, 1827; married Louisa Chilson; died July 9, 1898.

William, born July 9, 1829; married Olive Corbin; living in Forks township.

Rosina, born July 3, 1832; married Reuben Camp.

Angelina, born September 23, 1836; married William J. Hottenstein; died March 12, 1898.

Hester Ann, born February 14, 1840; married Dr. John M. Heacock; living at Dushore, Pa.

Alexander Chauncy, born November 8, 1845; married Elizabeth Place; living at Overton.

The settlement formed by Daniel Heverly and his sons was a noted one, and was known, for half a century, as the "Heverly settlement."

Heverly Family History

When the Heverly family came from Germany to Pennsylvania has not been determined. The ancestor of the branch, settling in Overton, was Adam Heverly, whose name is given in the yearly records as Heverly, Heberly and Haberly. On March 6, 1750, Adam Heverly took out a land warrant for 25 acres in Bucks county. During the French and Indian campaign Adam "Haberly" of Whitehall township, Northampton county, contributed for the use of the Province of Pennsylvania one draught horse, return of which was made June 3, 1758. In 1772 Adam Heverly is assessed in Whitehall, Northampton county, with a tax of 8 L , 5s, 4d. In 1781 Adam Heverly is assessed as a resident of Macungie township, Northampton county, who on January 9, 1788, took out a land warrant for 116 acres of land in the said township of Macungie. During the Revolutionary war, Adam Heberly was represented by a substitute in the Northampton county militia, 1781, commanded by Capt. Casper Greenamyer. The Adam Heverly, Heberly and Haberly, mentioned in the foregoing, is without doubt one and the same person. His known children were: Daniel, Jacob, Adam, Philip and Ann Mary. There may have been others, possibly a Henry and John. In 1813, as shown by the Lehigh county records, Adam Heverly took out letters on the estate of Elizabeth Heverly. They said Elizabeth was evidently the wife of Adam Heverly, Sr.
Daniel removed to Overton, Bradford county, where his family history is given.

Adam and Jacob evidently remained in Lehigh county, which had been formed from Northampton and the latter from Bucks.

Ann Mary married Christian Ruth and had sons. Christian, Philip and Jacob. She died in Lehigh county.

Philip, who had learned tailoring when a young man, went to Schoharie county, N.Y., where he married Miss Polly Wright, the daughter of a prosperous innkeeper. While at Schoharie he built and operated a grist-mill. Subsequently he went to Mehoopany, Wyoming county, Pa., and ran a saw-mill. Two years later he removed to Auburn, Susquehanna county, taking up a farm when that locality was a wilderness. Here he died in about 1853, in his 79th year, and his wife two years later also in her 79th year. The children of Philip and Polly Heverly were: George, Polly, Betsy, Susan, Sally Ann, Peggy, Philip, Jacob, Catherine, Daniel, John and Lovisa.

George married Betsy Dalton and occupied the homestead. He was a soldier in the War of 1812. His children were: Phoebe, married William Green; William, married Ann Tyler; Betsy, married Dr. Cornelius Lowe; Mary Ann, married 1st James Tyler, 2nd James Inman, 3rd John Sittser, 4th ____Gregory.

Polly (Mary) married Benjamin Van Nosdall.

Betsy (Elizabeth) married Abram Lotts. Children: Lovisa married Joseph Carlin; Betsy, married Mr. Lott; Polly, marry Samuel Hyde; Eliza, married Daniel Devine; Milton, married Ann Maria Cool; James, married Miss Lowe; Charles; John.

Susan married George Devine of Rush. Children: Mary Ann married Daniel Seeley; Sally, married Smith James; Daniel, married Eliza Lott; John, twice married 2nd wife Miss Carter; Parker, married 1st Miss Duell, 2nd Mary Terry; Norman, married Matsy Ann Carter; George.

Sally Ann married Major John Fassett of Wyoming county. Children: Charles, married Mary Prentice; Lucia Mara died unmarried, aged 80; Caroline, married Dr. J. W. Dennison; Emeline, married Stevens Dana; Sally Ann married Joseph T. Jennings; George S., married Mary J. Vose; Alva, married Mary J. Keeney; John died, when a young man, unmarried.

Peggy (Margaret) married John F. Dunmore of Rush. Had no children.

Philip removed to Overton, where his family history is given.

Jacob removed to Overton, where his family history is given.

Catherine married Morton Stevens; no children.

Daniel died when a young man

John, died in boyhood.

Lovisa married Nathan Green.

Frederick Kissell, a stone cutter by trade, came in from Schrader’s with Mr. Heverly in 1810. He "squatted" on a piece of land known as the McCann farm. He erected a log cabin near a spring, where there is a cluster of plum trees on the lower side of the road leading to Daniel Heverly’s. He cleared about five acres of land, then enlisted in the War of 1812, and served during the entire period of the same, when he returned and married Miss "Lockey" Clark. A son, John, was born to them in 1818. Kissell died in the spring of 1823, and was buried on a little ridge a short distance from his home, where he used to walk during his sickness. The grounds wherein his body is interred are said to have been selected for burial by himself. His was the first grave in the township, although the first death was that of Mrs. Christian Heverly. Soon after his death, Mrs. Kissell went to Canada with her people, where she again married and never returned. The son, John, was brought up by Samuel Smith of Albany, and died a few years since in Herrick at an advanced age. Kissell was a worthy citizen, yet he liked his drinks and would sometimes over-indulge. "Grandfather Heverly" frequently secured his services as cook and if liquor could be had, things became badly mixed in the culinary department. He had a machine for making ropes, which were then used instead of chains. Kissell was lame, and had the scar of a bayonet wound on his wrist, His by-word was "By-hedges."

Leonard Streevy, a German, who had married Betsy, daughter of Daniel Heverly, came to the township from Lehigh county about 1820. He located on land adjoining his father-in-law’s tract and made an improvement of about fourteen acres. His log house, with its huge stone chimney on the outside, stood in front of the present residence of Daniel Heverly, on lands of now his grandson, Edward Streevy, near the public highway. Mr. Streevy had a large family, but his children did not all come to the township with him. Betsy Heverly was his second wife, whom he married some years before his migration to Overton. However, before locating in Bradford county, he had made a trip to Ohio with his family, intending to make "the West" his home. He remained about a year, then moved back to Lehigh county. His son, Isaac, was born in 1805, during his stay in Ohio.
In the summer of 1827, Mrs. Streevy died, and in the following year Mr. Streevy returned to Lehigh county, selling his improvements to his son, Isaac, who subsequently transferred the title to his son, Edward, who now occupies the place. Mr. Streevy had a great pride in his bees, and kept a number of skips. He was undoubtedly the first to introduce this industry into Overton. Isaac inherited his father’s fondness in this direction, and for years was known as "the greatest bee man in all the country round." Mr. Streevy died in his native county in 1829. By his former marriage, he had children: Thomas, Sally (Mrs. John Sniteman), George and Polly (Mrs. Julius Lockenbach).
The children of Leonard and Betsy Streevy were: Isaac, Betsy (died, unmarried, at 15 years), Nancy (Mrs. Ebaugh), Susan (Mrs. Daniel Kaufman), John, Lydia (Mrs. Youel Miller), Catherine, Jacob, Hannah (died unmarried, at an advanced age), Shubina (Mrs. Guycoris), and Louisa, the youngest and only one living, born June 21, 1827, married William Kirkpatrick and resides at Titusville, Pa. Isaac, Jacob, John and Susan came to the township with their parents. The marriage of Susan to Daniel Kaufman in 1828 was the first in Overton .

Isaac Streevy having purchased his father’s farm, remained in the township and boarded with his uncle, Daniel Heverly, and "Grandfather Heverly," until 1830, when he was married to Miss Betsy, daughter of Christian Ruth, and moved into the log house, which his father had vacated. Here he lived for ten years, then erected a plank house, which stood nearly opposite the present residence of his son, Edward, and here resided until he built his new house. "Uncle Ike," as everybody called him, in beginning the scrabble of life for himself, set assiduously at work in clearing away the heavy timbers and preparing the soil for seed. His young and ambitious wife, who was blessed with the excellent physique, lent her willing hand in helping him log, pick and burn brush, frequently after night, reap grain, stack grain, make hay, etc. He cleared up his entire farm, which is now one of the most improved in the town, and spent his closing years in peace and plenty.
Mr. Streevy was a successful hunter and took great delight in reciting his "deer stories." However, he never wasted his time in the woods, only using his gun as necessity demanded to put in a supply of venison or a stock of peltry. He took great pride in keeping bees, and frequently had as many as seventy-five skips. He would do anything with them with uncovered hands and face without being stung, and was regarded as "a real bee-charmer." Many will long remember the "sweetness" that "Uncle Ike" used to furnish the young people, and "Aunt Betsy’s" wholesome bread and honey. For a number of years he manufactured cider for the people. He had a sweep-power and a beam-press. During the cider-making season his press was frequented by the boys of the neighborhood, whose wants were satisfied gratuitously.
Mr. Streevy was an honest man, careful in his business affairs. He did not envy his neighbor, but sought his friendship, and was glad to have him enjoy his hospitality. He delighted in reciting facts connected with his own life, and when a little animated made frequent use of the term, "By-gollers." He was a highly respected citizen, and passed away September 24, 1880, at the age of 75 years and 24 days.
His wife, Betsy (Elizabeth) Ruth, was born July 24, 1800, in Lehigh county, Pa. She remained a maiden lady, until she came to Overton to visit her sister, Mrs. Jacob Hottenstein. Becoming acquainted with Isaac Streevy, a courtship followed and in the early spring of 1830 they were married – theirs being the second wedding in the Heverly settlement. Beginning life, in the days of privation and struggle, not only was this good woman ever ready to assist her husband, but her usefulness extended to the whole community. In sickness she was always ready to give her gentle hand to the care of the afflicted, and anything that she could do to better their feelings was not withheld. She never did anything in word or deed to incur the displeasure of her neighbors, and all enjoyed her company and hospitality. "Aunt Betsey’s" garden, like her sister’s (Mrs. Hottenstein) was a model, and her flower beds were much admired. Early in life she joined the German Reformed church, in which she ever remained a devoted and consistent member. Of the original German Reformed class in Overton, she was the last survivor. The last eighteen years of her life were pitiful, indeed, she being totally blind. But her affliction was patiently and uncomplainingly borne, death coming peacefully on August 10, 1886, and ending all her sufferings. The children of Isaac and Elizabeth Streevy were:

Thomas, born January 2, 1831; married Caroline Bleiler; died December 8, 1907.

Phian, born March 2, 1833; married Peter Sherman; died May 2, 1862.

John, born January 7, 1836; married Maria Crandall; resides in Albany township.

Edward, born October 15, 1840; married Mary Christman; occupies the homestead.

John Streevy, born March 27, 1814, remained with his grandfather Heverly, upon the return of his father to Lehigh county. After the marriage of his brother, Isaac, he made his home with him until 1833, when he married Mary Staley, and soon thereafter began improvements and erected a log house on the Reuben Musselman farm. After a few years he sold his improvements to Cornelius Maloney, and moved to the place now occupied by Joseph Dieffenbaugh, and there resided until the time of his death- December 31, 1881. For many years, Mr. Streevy worked at the trade of carpenter-and-joiner, and acquired proficiency in the use of tools. He was a natural mechanic and worked his own way up without an instructor. He had no knowledge of mathematics, and it seemed very remarkable that he should be able from his square to determine the exact length of a brace or rafter. Several of the houses and barns yet standing in Overton were built by him.

"Uncle John," as he was familiarly known, was the violinist of earlier days and furnished music for the young people at their parties. He was a quiet, well-disposed man, much esteemed by his neighbors. Mary, or "Polly" Streevy, as she was commonly known, was born October 18, 1813, and died December 16, 1855. She was a lady kind in sickness, and greatly enjoyed the association of friends. The children of John and Mary Streevy were:

Alfred, born April 12, 1837, married 1st Mary Moon, 2nd Lovina (Hottenstein) Heverly; died May 15, 1892.

Wilson, who married Hannah Munch; died December 3, 1895, aged 56 years.

Henry, who was unmarried, enlisted in the service of his country and was killed May 3, 1863, at Chancellorsville, aged 19 years.

William married, and is living in the West.

Charles, born November 27, 1847, married Catherine Garlough; died September 14, 1907.

Elizabeth married George Essenwine and resides in Towanda.

Mary Ann died unmarried in womanhood.

Jacob Streevy returned with his father to Lehigh county and there learned the trade of blacksmith. In 1839 he came back to Bradford county and worked at his trade in different sections, until 1852, when he opened a shop on the place opposite Fred Haverly’s. He moved to Dushore in 1856, and followed blacksmithing and hotel keeping until 1874, when he removed to the state of Washington, where he died about 1894, aged 80 years. He married first Lucy Brown; children – Lyman, Louise, (Mrs. W. A. Cramer), Mary E. (Mrs. W.E. Griggs), Lizzie (Mrs. Dorsey Griggs), Laura (Mrs. A. L. Matthews), Hattie (Mrs. W. J. Murray); second wife, Eliza Jackson of Dushore, by whom he had three children.

Henry Sherman, a native of Mifflin, Pa., came to Overton from Columbia county in 1824. He made the journey on foot by the way of Kizer’s and Ellis’s with his wife, one child (George) and a sister, Beckie Sherman, afterwards Mrs. Daniel Garlough. He carried the gun and his wife the baby, and vice versa. Mr. Sherman had been induced to this locality by his father-in-law, George Hunsinger, who was living on Ringer Hill in Sullivan county. He took up his abode, for a time, with Daniel Heverly 2d, until he could prepare a home of his own. He "squatted" upon lands south of Overton village, and subsequently held 200 acres by "right of possession." He built a log house, like those of the pioneers generally, with a puncheon floor and bark roof, furnished with domestic articles of his own manufacture. This log cabin stood by a spring in Sullivan county, about twenty-five rods from Black creek. Mr. Sherman lived here about ten years, then built a second log house in the vale below Overton village, near the old road and about twenty-five rods from the creek. This building stood in Overton township.

Mr. Sherman brought in a cow and eight sheep, and the first night after moving into his new home saved the latter from destruction by wolves, only by a timely watch and protection. He began clearing his land, covered with a dense forest of huge pines, hemlocks and other timbers, but being alone could not make very rapid progress. However, he managed to clear up about five acres a year, until his boys became large enough to help him accomplish more. After a few years’ residence in the second log house, he built a third one on the main road between Overton and Forksville, about twenty-five rods from the creek. Mr. Sherman was a cooper by trade, and for several years supplied the wants of the people in the cooperage line. For a number of years he gave attention to the manufacture of lumber and kept a water mill in operation on Black creek. He also run a distillery for a short time upon his place. He built a little shop near his house, and did some blacksmithing and horse-shoeing.

Henry Sherman was of Pennsylvania-German parentage. He came to Overton when it was literally a wilderness, hoping to secure for himself and wife a home. His humble abode soon began to be blessed by the presence of "little ones," and it was, indeed, with great effort that the wants of his family were met, lands cleared and a start made in life. After years of diligence, he was able to make a good living, and closed his days in plenty. He had a "weakness" in putting up and tearing down buildings, and will be remembered as "Overton’s notable barn builder." In 1823 Mr. Sherman was united in marriage with Catherine Hunsinger. They had seven children, as follows;

George, married and lived in one of the lower counties.

Daniel, married Lorinda Larabee, removed West and served in the Civil War.

Henry, married Catharine Rinebold; died April 9, 1902, aged 75 years.

Amos, died in his young manhood, unmarried.

Mary, married Charles Brown of Hillsgrove, Pa.

Peter, married 1st Phian Streevy, 2nd Elizabeth Hatch; died March 6, 1891, aged 58 years.

Jacob, born November 2, 1834; married Hannah Musselman; died March 11, 1905.

Mrs. Sherman died in 1834, and in 1836 Mr. Sherman married Elizabeth Thrash, who as "Betsy" Sherman will long be remembered as a good Samaritan, always ready and administering to the needs of the afflicted. She regarded it as a duty to visit and comfort the sick, and would leave her bed at any time of night to assist her neighbors. Mr. Sherman died May 14, 1878, aged 78 years, and his wife, Elizabeth, March 5, 1882, in her 63rd year. Unto Henry and Elizabeth Sherman were born:

Catharine, married A. K. Woodley.

Nelson, born October 12, 1838; married Margaret Rowe.

William, married Emily Molyneux

Loretta, married Augustus Bleiler.

John, died unmarried in his 37th year.

Moses, married and lives in Michigan, born 1846 *.

Caroline, married Albert Molyneux, born 1855 *.

Andrew, married Nettie Hottenstein.

Ann, married and lives in the West.

Edward, married Della Bahr.

Seven other children died in infancy, thus Mr. Sherman was the father of twenty-three children, a record that has never been equaled by any other man in Overton.

* Editor's Note: In January 2006, Carol Brotzman made the following comments on the Sherman family as recorded above. Carol has been styding and preserving the church records for St. Matthews of Pike for many years. We know from her findings that the circuit-riding minister went through Sullivan County and probably Columbia County, as well. Carol established the two birth dates noted above from these records. Also, between 1846 and 1855 the Shermans had no living children. However, Saint Matthews records that on April 9, 1850, the "infant son" of "Henry Sherman and wife" was buried "aged about 2 months". This burial appears to indicate one of the seven children that died in infancy.

Philip Heverly, son of Philip and Polly (Wright) Heverly, born March 19, 1803, came to the township in the spring of 1827 from Auburn, Susquehanna county, having been induced hither by his cousins. He purchased the improvements made by his cousin, Jacob Heverly, of "Grandmother" Heverly for $50, he having left by bequest his property to his mother. Soon after Philip came in he married Miss Anna Kellogg, a sister of Mrs. John Heverly, and began housekeeping in the log cabin, which had been erected and occupied by his cousin. After about a year and a half domestic relations between Mr. Heverly and his wife became unpleasant and occasioned a separation. He returned to Susquehanna county, where he remained two years, then came back and married Catherine Thrasher. He built a log house a few rods above Fred Haverly’s upper barn, and took up his abode there in 1834. Here he lived for a short time, then sold out his interest to his brother, Jacob, and moved to Sullivan county, near Dushore, where he died January 1, 1880. He was an honest and industrious man and worthful citizen. His wife, Catherine, born August 8, 1800, died June 8, 1873. Their children were:

Solon, born June 24, 1835; married Caroline Graff; died June 29, 1898.

Reuben, born June 23, 1836; married Elizabeth Graff; occupies the homestead.

Barbara Ann, born January 28, 1838; died unmarried, August 19, 1869.

Henry, born January 17, 1839; died August 18, 1854.

Jacob Heverly
Photo Scanned from the Original Text

Jacob Heverly, son of Philip and Polly (Wright) Heverly, born February 6, 1805, in Schoharie county, N. Y., having married and previously visited the "Heverly settlement," concluded to move into the wilderness with his young wife and take his chances with his brother in earning a fortune. Accordingly, taking such household goods as he had in a lumber wagon, he started with his wife and horses from Auburn, Susquehanna county, and reached "the settlement" about the middle of February, 1828, and moved in with his brother.
Of his advent into Overton, Mr. Heverly says: "When I came in the place there were not more than a hundred acres cleared in all. ‘Uncle Heverly’ lived in a log house, near the residence of Widow Heverly; John Heverly lived down on the flats; Christian Heverly, on the Hausknecht place; Daniel Heverly, on the farm now occupied by his son, Daniel; Henry Heverly lived adjoining his brother, Christian; Leonard Streevy lived opposite his brother-in-law, Daniel Heverly; and Henry Sherman lived below Overton village, near Black creek. The winter of 1827-’28 was the mildest I ever witnessed with scarcely any snow, and much rain."
As soon as Mr. Heverly had located he set assiduously at work in felling the huge hemlocks and making ready for seed. Soon he had let the sunshine smile upon many acres, from which he reaped the golden grain, that always seemed to yield in abundance. "A failure was not known." He was rewarded in his first harvest by 400 bushels of wheat, oats and rye, which he threshed by hand. Wheat was then worth $1.00 per bushel, rye 50 cents and oats 25 cents. He cleared about ten acres per year, and generally sowed to rye, as he had better luck with that grain than wheat. He harvested as many as fifty bushels of rye from a seeding of two. He contracted with agent Mix for 400 acres of land, which he occupied, and by unremitting toil, careful management and favor of good luck, soon satisfied the $1,050 debt. By his own industry, he cleared fully 200 acres of his farm. He was a man proverbially up with the sun, did his chores before breakfast and then was off to the fields or the woods, where his time was spent diligently until the dinner call brought him from his labors. After his "hour’s nooning" he again returned to his work. He did his chores before dark, ate his supper and retired early. He had a great fondness for mush-and-milk, which usually constituted his evening meal.
He always put in a store of cider for winter, and during the long evenings enjoyed his glass and rolls of fried-cakes. All were welcome to share the fruits of his table, which was liberally provided. "Uncle Jake," as he was commonly known, took great pride in his porkers, and raised the largest and fattest hogs in the neighborhood. His stock was the best kept, and his sleek oxen were generally driven to church instead of his horses. His barns were always well stored with hay and grain, and the people when out of provender, came to him for miles around. In short, Mr. Heverly was the most successful farmer of the pioneers and always had more than enough. He was a man of wonderful physique, and cleared more acres than any other man in Overton township. For about a year and a half he lived with his brother, Philip, then occupied the new log house, built by the latter, which stood in the field, some rods above Fred Haverly’s upper barn. Here he dwelt until the erection of his plank house, in which he spent his last days; it is yet standing and is the home of his son, Fred.
Mr. Heverly was the last of the heroic fathers, who struck the first blows for civilization in the township of Overton. He was a true pioneer and bore his part most nobly. He was a man pleasant in demeanor and slow to anger, disclosing a strong and fearless will power when thoroughly aroused. He was frugal, and none ever questioned his honesty. As a father, he was kind and indulgent, and never was he guilty of the use of improper language in the hearing of his children. He was much esteemed by his neighbors, enjoyed their confidence and was frequently called by them to fill places of trust and honor, always performing his duties with fidelity. In politics he took a deep interest, being originally a Democrat, but changed to Whig in 1840 and became a Republican in 1856. He never missed a township or general election. Mr. Heverly’s power of endurance was remarkable, always working, but seldom tired and never sick. Up to the time of his demise, he was never required to call a physician nor confined to the house a whole day by sickness. The activity of his mental powers was equally wonderful. On the 2nd of April, 1886, the summons came suddenly and he died without pain or the utterance of a word.
On December 9th, 1827, Mr. Heverly was united in marriage with Miss Mary, daughter of Larry and Irene (Fairchilds) Dunmore of Susquehanna county. Mrs. Heverly, though a woman weak in body but of stout heart, faced the dangers and privations in the wilderness, unfalteringly, and performed her part admirably. She was an exceptionally good lady of endearing qualities and womanly virtues. Her character was spotless and all spoke of her in words of praise. She was an ardent Christian, and was wont to repair to her closet daily and pray in secret. She attended Sunday services regularly, sometimes walking, but usually rode her bay pony, "Sal," taking a couple of the children on with her. Rev. Charles Wright, who preached her funeral sermon, in conversation with us, thus referred to her: "Mary Heverly was one of the best women I ever knew; she was of the salt of the earth. Her house was always a home for the ministers. My soul was sore with sadness when I was called to pronounce her eulogy. "Aunt Charlotte" Ormsby paid this tribute: "I loved to visit Mrs. Heverly; she was an excellent Christian lady. She used to stop by the road-side, when overcome by fatigue, and read her Bible while on her road to meeting. She was not a strong woman." Mrs. Heverly took great interest in the rearing of her children, and installed in their minds principles, which bring forth golden fruits. She was born September 12, 1805, departed this life, October 20, 1842. The children of Jacob and Mary Heverly were:

Curtis Russell, born August 8, 1830; married Mary Musselman; died December 1, 1905, at Macon City, Mo.

Jane Elizabeth, born September 19, 1834; married June 30, 1850 to Daniel Heverly by Justice James Heverly; living on the farm in Overton, where the sixty years of her married life have been spent.

Harriet Ladorska, born October 1, 1836; married LeRoy Heverly; died April 5, 1857, in Overton.

Minerva Paulina, born June 20, 1838; married November 19, 1856 to Rev. Parker J. Gates; celebrated her golden wedding in 1906 resides at Staten Island, N. Y.

In 1843, Jacob Heverly married for his second wife, Mrs. Almira (Betts) Haines. Their children were:

Mary Ann, born September 1, 1844; married Alexander Lane; resides at Burlington, Pa.

Jennie, born January 26, 1846; married a Mr. Craig; died in March, 1894, in Ohio.

Their marriage relations not proving harmonious, Mr. and Mrs. Heverly separated. In 1848, Mr. Heverly again married, his third wife being Mrs. Jane R. (Dunmore) Riley, a sister of his first wife. Their children were:

Jacob Fred, born October 20, 1849; married Miss Amanda Brown; occupies the homestead.

Joseph Matthew, born December 27, 1853; married 1st Miss Libbie Messersmith, 2nd Miss Anna Rollan; resides in Albany township.

Mrs. Jane R. Heverly, born June 9, 1815; died July 8, 1868.

Jacob Hottenstein
Overton Pioneer
Photo Scanned from Original Text

Jacob Hottenstein came to Overton in 1829, where he was induced by the Heverlys, of whom he was a relative. Tradition has it that "his great-grandparents emigrated from Germany in 1711, and being very poor, his great-grandfather was sold to pay their passage. It required seven years’ labor to liquidate the debt, when he was allowed his freedom. He sawed wood, earning money enough to buy seven pounds of tobacco, which he traded to the Indians for 400 acres of land, the same tract yet being occupied by the Hottensteins in Berks county, Pa." When Mr. Hottenstein was a child his parents removed to Lehigh county, where he remained until the time of his pilgrimage to Overton. In 1819 he was united in marriage with Miss Lydia, daughter of Christian Ruth, who was a nephew of Daniel Heverly (1st).

Having heard most flattering reports of the "Heverly settlement," Mr. Hottenstein concluded to move hither and take his chances in the new country. But he was a poor man and had no team: accordingly, Daniel Heverly (2nd) was sent for to move him in. Heverly made the trip to Lehigh county with his horses and wagon in the fall of 1829. Upon reaching the settlement in October, Mr. Hottenstein found he had a wife, five children, a few household goods and $5.00 in cash. After he had selected a site, the neighbors turned out to assist him in putting up a log cabin; his family in the meantime remaining at Heverly’s. He "squatted" upon lands now included in the farm of his son, John. The cabin was a one-story building, covered with clapboards and stood about fifteen rods west of where the residence of J. C. Hottenstein now is.

Nowhere in the construction of the building was a nail used. The furniture was limited and of the rudest makeup. During the first winter of Mr. Hottenstein’s stay in his new home, he accidentally fell a tree upon his cabin. Fortunately, it was not crushed, but suffice it to say that the family was not a little frightened. For some time Mr. Hottenstein found pioneer life severe, indeed. His family must be fed, lands cleared and a team had. It was evident that success could not be earned in the wilderness without true manly courage and honest toil. So with true pluck he began his struggle in the wild woods for the livelihood.

To provide the wants of his family, he worked in the vicinity of Monroeton and Towanda, and not infrequently after his day’s work, backed a grist to his family, a distance of twelve or fifteen miles, through an almost unbroken wilderness. His journey, which was generally after night, was beset with dangers – the woods then being full of wild beasts. One night as he was coming across the huckleberry mountain with his bag of corn upon his back, he heard the wolves upon his track. By making good speed, he reached the " Baker clearing’ before the brutes could do him harm. In order to reach his work, in time again in the morning to get in a full day, he had to arise very early. He had no watch and could only tell the time by the rise of a certain star.

During the sugarmaking season he was required to go to Monroeton, to borrow a kettle, that he might, also, have some of the sweet product. After a time Mr. Hottenstein had made some improvements and became the owner of an ox-team. He would go the "Forks" to mill with his oxen hitched to a crotched sapling, slabs being laid across the forks to contain the grain.

Mrs. Hottenstein shared her husband’s hardships, and helped him log, reap grain, stack grain, rake hay, make sugar, etc. She had an excellent physique and was capable of great endurance. In 1840 she and her daughter, Lydia, went on foot a distance of 124 miles, to Lehigh county on a visit. They remained seven weeks and then walked back. Mrs. Hottenstein took great pride in her garden, which was a model, and in her beautiful beds of flowers.

The older children were girls, yet they did all they could to assist their parents. Caroline says: "When I was sixteen years old I went to mill, where Frank Hannon has since lived. I led the horse. There was only a single clearing between Overton and there." Lydia says: "Owls made the nights hideous by their screeches around us. One evening as I stepped to the cabin door to see if the cow was in the yard, I espied two dark objects sniffing around, and said, ‘what pretty dogs;! Before forming an intimate acquaintance, it was found that the dogs were wolves, but they scampered off without doing me harm. When thirteen years old, I was ‘mill-boy’ for father and Uncle Ike Streevy. Taking Mr. Streevy’s ‘old Nancy’ with a bag of grain upon her back, I, walking made frequent trips to Molyneux’s mill, a distance of six miles through the woods. This journey of twelve miles was made in a day. Sometimes I went to Blackman’s mill in Monroe."

By the dint of hard work, Mr. Hottenstein cleared about fifty of the hundred acres occupied. Of the early settlers, he was the most literary personage. He had taught several terms of school in Lehigh county, and after coming to Overton kept a private school at Daniel Kaufman’s. In the winter of 1847 he went to Luzerne county and taught, as he did, in the next two winters succeeding. In 1845, through Mr. Hottenstein’s efforts, a Sabbath school was organized at the old school house, and a small library procured. He acted as superintendent for two or three years. Mr. Hottenstein not only taught the young the word of God, but expounded the Scriptures to the older, and furnished them with scriptural food. He was a local minister of the German Reformed denomination for several years. He took the first newspaper in the township, Der Unabhangig Republikaner (The Independent Republican), published in Lehigh county at Allentown. This was the only paper read in the township in 1829, and Mr. Hottenstein went regularly eight miles after it, through a pathless wilderness, the post-office then being on the line of the old turnpike, beyond Dushore.

Upon the organization of the township, Mr. Hottenstein was elected justice of the peace, and continued to hold the same office for a period of twenty-five years. Politically, Mr. Hottenstein was an active and uncompromising Democrat. His first vote for President was cast in 1820 for James Monroe and his last in 1880 for Gen. W. S. Hancock. The day following election, overcome with excitement and old age tightening her grasp, he was placed upon a sick bed, from which he never arose, the end coming peacefully. Jacob Hottenstein was born January 1, 1799; died November 6, 1880. His wife, Lydia Ruth, born March 25, 1797; died January 5, 1879. Their children were:

Sarah, born January 10, 1820; married George Munch, October 5, 1847; died June 6, 1903.

Caroline, born October 12, 1821; married Peter Mosier of Dushore; died January 18, 1892.

Lydia, born April 18, 1824; married Sylvester Covey; living in Terry township.

Mary Ann, born May 1, 1826; Overton’s pioneer milliner, covering a period of twenty-seven years; died , unmarried, July 8, 1897.

William J., born January 15, 1828; married Angeline Heverly, June, 1854; died July 10, 1903 in Forks, Sullivan county, Pa.

George W., born June 18, 1830; married Melinda Waltman; died July 28, 1864 in Andersonville prison, Georgia.

John C., born April 18, 1833; married Rosina Kilmer; occupies the homestead.

Mandes, born October 2, 1834; married Charity Benjamin; resides in Potter county, Pa.

Solomon, born September 9, 1838; died November 3, 1864 in Florence prison, S. C.

Hottenstein Family History

William Hottenstein, the family historian of Berks county, Pa., furnished the following: "The Hottenstein family is recorded in the Vienna collection of names of noble families as belonging to the nobility of the Frankish Knighthood. Their origin is traced back to the so-called Forest of Spessard, not far from Aschaffenburg, in Germany. In this forest lived already in 380, A. D., the Frankish Province Count, Reidbold Von Hottenstein. The name is derived from a hill in the forest, and signifies in the old German language a holy stone or work. The origin of the name is attributed to the fact that Reidbold held annually the great, solemn court upon a large rock under a powerful oak tree. His coat of arms contained two fields, one white and the other red, signifying wisdom, impartiality and strict justice. In the red field as well as upon the helmet was fixed a white falcon, indicating courage and eagerness for battle and besides this a Count’s crown. Thus originated the coat of arms of this family, which has remained unchanged to the present day. His wife was Illseboda, a daughter of a Westphalian Count. Reidbold died in 415, in high honors."
"Then in the line of descent came Alfred Von Hottenstein, who flourished in the year 506, and Ansgar Von Hottenstein, 887, who left a son, Filbert. Five of Filbert’s sons were shipwrecked during the Crusades, and in 1288 the head of the family was Giselbert Von Hottenstein. His son, Hartung, became sole heir to the family castle and possessions. In 1524 the castle was demolished by peasants during the Peasant War. Kuno Von Hottenstein, who was in the German army, alone survived. In 1527 he assisted in sacking Rome, and the booty he secured revived the family fortunes. He had two sons, Nicholas and Ernst. Nicholas was also in the service of the German Emperor. His descendants still flourish among the nobility of Austria. Ernst remained at Esslingen, where he became mayor. He died in 1618 and left three sons, who emigrated to America."

The three brothers arrived in Philadelphia, but the exact date of their arrival has not yet been ascertained. One of them died at Philadelphia, another removed to Lancaster where his descendants still live, whilst the third, Jacob Hottenstein, settled in Oley township, Philadelphia county, now Berks. This Jacob Hottenstein was the ancestor of the Hottensteins in Overton and Sullivan county. How long he remained in Oley is not known, but the records show that he moved to Maxatawney township in 1729. There he bought a tract of 116 acres from Caspar Wistar for 40 pounds and 12 shillings, sterling. He married Dorothea Reber and had four sons – Jacob, William, David and Henry, and two daughters – Dorothea and Maria. It appears that even during that time, when preachers of the Gospel were so scarce, he did not neglect to give his children a good religious training. Rev. Father Muhlenberg, the venerable Lutheran minister, residing at Philadelphia, frequently came to his house on missionary travels, to give his children catechetical instructions. The original farm of 116 acres, together with 327 additional acres which Jacob acquired afterward, are still in the possession of his descendants, William Hottenstein occupying the original farm. Jacob Hottenstein died in 1753, aged 56 years."
"The oldest son, Jacob Jr. settled in Richmond township. He had four daughters. William bought a farm in Cumru township, near Reading. He had five sons- Samuel, William, Henry, Solomon and David, and four daughters. David Hottenstein the third son of Jacob, lived in Maxatawney on the farm of his father. His issue consisted of three sons and two daughters – Jacob, David, Daniel, Catharine and Dorothea. Catharine was married to Jacob Grim of Macungie, Lehigh county, and bore him eleven children – eight sons and three daughters. Henry, the fourth son, became a doctor in Lancaster, Samuel, the oldest son of William, settled near Reading. Solomon, the fourth son of William, moved to Lehigh and became the progenitor of the family in that county. He had five sons and seven daughters. The sons were William, Peter, Jacob, John and Henry." Jacob was one of the pioneers of Overton, and Henry settled in Forks, Sullivan County.

Christian Ruth, who had married Rowena Wolvert, and she having died, moved to Overton with his son-in-law, Jacob Hottenstein, in 1829. After three years he returned to Lehigh county, but came back in 1841 and lived with his sons-in-law, Hottenstein and Streevy, until the time of his death – June 16, 1857, aged 78 years. Mr. Ruth was a member of the U. S. Militia to put down the "Whisky Rebellion" in 1794. In 1798 he was one of those who opposed the "House Tax," which led to what is popularly known as "The Hot Water War." In Northampton county a number of persons were seized by order of the U. S. Marshal, but were rescued by a force under the leadership of John Fries. Mr. Ruth was one of Fries’ followers, and was arrested with him and the other ring leaders and sentenced to eight months’ imprisonment and to pay a fine of $200.
Mr. Ruth’s son, Stephen, came to the township in 1847, purchased and occupied the W. F. Dieffenbaugh place until 1867, when he sold out and removed from the neighborhood.

John Clark, a brother of Mrs. Kissell, came to Overton in 1829 and lived a short time in the old log school house. He began clearing on the John Molyneux place, and erected a log house in which he lived about two years, then sold his possession to Daniel Heverly (2nd) and moved to the Alleghenies. He had a family of nine sons and a daughter.

James Daugherty, an Irishman, came to the township in 1829 from Columbia county. He began improvements on the John Streevy place and erected a log house below the public road, leading to New Albany. After clearing about ten acres, in 1840, he removed with his family to Muncy.

John Barchley, a Switzer, and razor-and-shears-grinder by occupation, came to the settlement in 1833. He built a log house on the W. S. Dieffenbaugh place, which he occupied a short time, then left the locality. Barchley is described as being a "strapping big fellow, who carried his grindstone upon his back with little or no effort."

Jacob Hunsinger came in from Sullivan county in the fall of the same year, and occupied the possession made by Barchley. After three of four years he moved to Muncy.

John Sniteman, a native of Lehigh county, who had married Sally Streevy, came in and occupied the same place in 1841. He also moved to Muncy in 1843. Stephen Ruth was the next occupant and owner in 1847. He sold to W. S. Dieffenbaugh in November 1866.

Hiram Baker came to the township in about 1834 and began improvement of the McGovern place. He built a snug log house and remained upon the place until 1838, when he was succeeded by Daniel Kellogg. Kellogg continued improvements until 1841, then sold to Edward McGovern and moved out of the township.

Ludwig (Lewis) Rinebold, born April 17, 1787 and a shoemaker by occupation, came to Overton from Lehigh county in 1835. His family, consisting of his wife and nine children, were loaded in a two-horse covered wagon, together with all their household effects, and the journey made across the mountains. They carried a little stove with them, on which their cooking was done along the way. It was late in the fall when Mr. Rinebold reached his destination. He had $2.50 in money, a wagon, team of horses and a large family – no home, and winter soon coming on. What could he do? This is what he did: He purchased 50 acres of land of Daniel Heverly (2nd), giving his best horse (the other was worthless) in payment for one-half of it. He traded his wagon with Mr. Heverly for a cow and fodder enough to winter her. He lived with his neighbors during the winter and made their shoes to procure food for his family. In return for his work he received a piece of pork, some grain or a bag of potatoes. There was always a way out, and Mr. Rinebold in due time erected a log house, reared his family, and cleared and paid for his farm, which is now owned and occupied by his grandson, Addison Rinebold. Mr. Rinebold was a quiet, godly man esteemed by all. He died January 7, 1856. His wife was Sally Stotery, who was born September 8, 1792. She was a very ardent Christian, and spent much time in song and prayer. She died March 13, 1864. The children of Ludwig and Sally Rinebold were:

Edward, born February 7, 1819; married Celinda Heverly; died July 10, 1909 in Towanda, Pa.

Reuben, born March 20, 1820; married Catharine Heverly; died September 1, 1892.

Mary Ann, born November 5, 1821; married Dykeman Cole; died March 29, 1863.

Josiah, born May 2, 1823; married Margaret Crown; resides at Sayre, Pa.

Sally, born January 19, 1825; married James Heverly; died September 6, 1864.

Ezra, born July 4, 1827; married Elizabeth Crawn; resides near Overton.

Angeline, born February 26, 1829; married Eli Heverly; occupies the original Heverly homestead.

Lewis, born April 19, 1831; married 1st Mira Leonard, 2nd Jane Smith; resides in Overton.

James, born March 2, 1833; died June 10, 1864, in Andersonville prison, Ga.

Editor's Note: Ludwig Rinebold appears to have been the great-uncle of Addison Rinebold who married Lavina Gougler in 1850 in Lehigh County and then moved to Sullivan County in 1852. Addison was a son of John ("Johannes") Rinebold and the grandson of William ("Wilhelm") Rinebold, presumably a brother of Ludwig. Addison and at least one of his children are posted in the cemetery listings below at St. Paul's Reformed Church in Overton, PA. You can learn more about this other Rinebold family at The Descendants of Addison Rinebold. John Rinebold had a brother named Conrad Rinebold who moved to the farm next to that of John and is also buried in St. Paul's Reformed Church cemetery. These various Rinebold families are also mentioned in Streby's History of Forks Township.

Daniel Slotery, a German and native of Lehigh county, came to the township about 1837 from Waterloo, N. Y. He began a clearing on the Thomas McGovern place and erected a log house. In 1841 he sold his possession to Thomas McGovern, and moved to Sullivan county on the Osthaus place. Slotery was a shoemaker by trade, and a brother of Mrs. Ludwig Rinebold.

Charles Dieffenbaugh came in from Sullivan county in 1836 and built Christian Heverly’s new house, taking the Kissell place in payment for his services. In the fall of the same year, Mr. Dieffenbaugh erected a small dwelling upon his place and on Christmas Day was united in marriage with Miss Martha, daughter of Charles and Elizabeth Mullen. In February, 1837, he moved into his new home with his young wife. In 1841 he traded his farm with Owen McCann for property on Sugar Ridge He erected a log-house and moved to the Ridge in May, 1842, being the first settler there, He cleared up a farm of about 70 acres, and in the meantime worked at his trade, that of carpenter and joiner. His death occurred January 13, 1876, aged 65 years. The children of Charles and Martha Dieffenbaugh were: William Sylvester, Hannah C. (Mrs. B. A. Cranmer), Harriet R. (Mrs. F. L. Vangorder), Mary E. (Mrs. Artemus Fawcett), Joseph E. and Sophia, who died young.

John Molyneux, whose father, Edward Molyneux, had purchased a tract of land, came in from Sullivan county in 1837, and occupied that part of it, where John Clark had made an opening. He cleared land, erected a log house and kept bachelor’s hall until 1843, when he married Miss Hannah Heverly. Mr. Molyneux was intensely industrious, and cleared and improved nearly his whole farm. He was the champion sheep shearer of the neighborhood, and an ardent Methodist. By word or deed he never injured anyone. He was born April 7, 1815; died August 17, 1897. The children of John and Hannah Molyneux were: Albert, Wesley, Lydia (Mrs. William W. Warburton), Charles, Emily (Mrs. William Sherman), Ellen (Mrs. Isaac Bailey), Cyrus and Fanny.

Wilt Family:
Among the Pennsylvania Germans, who took an active and prominent part in the struggle for American Independence, were several members of the Wilt family. One of these was Jacob Wilt, born, 1762 in Maxatawney, Berks county. He removed to Whitehall, Lehigh county, where he resided during the Revolutionary War. In April, 1781, he enlisted at Philadelphia as a private in the Company of Capt. Jacob Weis in the "Dutch regiment"of which Jacob Weis was Quartermaster, attached to the French army. With his command he was in campaigns and long marches through Maryland, Virginia, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York, Connecticut and Rhode Island, and was present at the "grand frolic" given the soldiers by General Rochambeau at Hartford. He served until the close of the war receiving his honorable discharge in February, 1783. After his return from the service he married Miss Elizabeth Allen and spent the balance of his life in Salisbury township and Allentown. He died June 13th, 1858, aged 96 years and is buried in the Salisbury cemetery. His wife, born September 20th, 1765, died March 20th, 1822, buried in the Allentown cemetery. Jacob and Elizabeth Wilt had five sons and three daughters as follows:

Peter was a soldier in the War of 1812; died, unmarried, in Philadelphia.

Maj. Joseph was a soldier in the War of 1812, married and lived at Emaus; had a family of several children of whom there are distinguished descendants. **

Magdalene married Daniel Heverly and removed to Overton, Pa.

Lydia married William Simons and lived in Lehigh county.

Jacob married and had a family of several children; lived and died in Philadelphia.

Ann married Jacob Bogart; reared her family and died in Lehigh county.

Abraham married and lived in Allentown. He had several children, one of whom was Edward, who won renown in the Civil War, being one of the gunners on the Kearsage, who helped sink the Alabama. His cousin, J. Andrew Wilt of Towanda, Pa. has the distinction of being the youngest "enlisted" soldier in the Civil War from Bradford county.

Editor's Note: Joseph Wilt (born in 1786 in Berks County, PA; died June 30, 1864) and his wfie Susanna were the parents of James Wilt (September 8, 1818- 13 March 1917), born and died in Lehigh County, PA. In 1846, James married Carolina Dankle (Janaury 24, 1826-Septembder 17, 1914), born and died in Lehigh County, PA. The couple lived and raised a family in Upper Saucon Township in Lehigh County. In the early part of the 19th century, the part of the township where they lived was known as Center Valley. The couple had eight children that we know of: Hiram J. born about 1846; Richard, born in 1847; James, born in 1850; Allan, born in 1852; Mary E., born in 1854 [married Milton Houck]; Alfred, born in 1855, John D. born in 1857; and Harry, born in 1862. The Wilts appear in all the Pennsylvania census records from 1850 forward, with the father shown as a hotel proprietor.

On August, 1912, the following article appeared in the Sullivan Review, published in Dushore, PA:


Extraordinary Epoch Reaches Sixty-eighth Anniversary

(Special to "The Record"), Bethlehem, PA, Aug. 24-
An extra-ordinary epoch in the married lives of Mr. and Mrs. James Wilt, of Centre Valley, was the celebration today of their sixty-eight wedding anniversary. The aged couple have been married longer than any other people in Lehigh Valley. Wilt is 93 and his wife 86.
Wilt was one of the first postmasters in town, serving for a period of 28 years from the days of Buchanan till Cleveland came in, and in all his long life he has never been away from home more than a week at a time. He was the proprietor for many years of the Grand Central Hotel, which is now run by his son. When he first took charge of the hotel, whisky was sold at 3 cents a glass and cigars at four for a cent. There was no liquor license to pay at the time. His hotel was famous as a stopping place for stages between this place and Philadelphia before the day of the railroad.
Wilt attributes his good health to abstemiousness, especially in the use of tobacco and liquor.

James Wilt was the nephew of Magdalena Wilt, wife of Daniel Heverly. Here is just one example of how the old German families in eastern Pennsylvania were linked by blood and marriage from early on. One can imagine the countless times that travelers to and from Sullivan County to Philadelphia stopped, rested, slept and passed along news at the Grand Central Hotel. In doing so, the random traveler surely exchanged information to and from the Wilts of Berks, Lehigh and Sullivan Counties.

You can learn more about the old German families at several sites on the internet. Here is one that links up the Wilt, Baumgartner, Gast and Knachel families, just as an example: Ancestors of Raymond Knachel.

Andrew Wilt
Photo Scanned from the Original Text

Andrew Wilt, the fourth son, born June 11, 1801, learned the art of shoe-making and opened a shop in Allentown. On April 8, 1827, he was united in marriage with Miss Mary Swartz, and continued to reside in Allentown until the spring of 1844, when through the persuasion of his brother-in-law, Daniel Heverly, he removed to Overton hoping to better his conditions in life. Taking his family and such goods as he could load in a one-horse lumber wagon (covered) he set out for his new home. The roads were bad and mountains had to be climbed. His horse became tired out and all, save the two youngest children, were required to walk the greater part of the distance. "When climbing the hills, the men would shove against the hind part of the wagon to help the horse along." To make this lonely and fatiguing journey required several days, and although unaccustomed to the inconvenience and hardships of pioneering, he did not allow himself to become disheartened.
Soon after coming to Overton he purchased a piece of timber land, which he began clearing as opportunity afforded. Here, after having erected a hewed-log house, he moved his family and spent the remainder of his days. To improve and pay for a farm and provide the wants of a family in those days meant to practice industry and economy, in which he was equal to the test. By improving his land in summer and working at his trade in winter and during stormy days, he was able to pay for his land and spend his last days in comfort.
In polities Mr. Wilt was not an office-seeker, but was an earnest advocate of what he believed to be right. His first vote was cast for General Jackson in 1824 and repeated in 1828 and ’32. He afterwards joined the Whigs and voted for General Harrison in 1849, his last vote being cast for Benjamin Harrison in 1888. He was a very strong Unionist, and was broken-hearted when the news came of the defeat of the Northern forces at Bull Run. Commenting upon the war, after he had allowed a son, not yet fifteen to go, and thinking that he would never come back, said: "I have done all I could, I have given my boy to the Union."
Mr. Wilt was a man honorable in all his dealings and placed an estimate upon men according to their integrity. He was exceedingly careful in the moral training of his family and taught by both precept and example. And to him in his closing years, it was a great satisfaction to know that he never once had cause to regret the conduct of his children. "He never did an unjust or foolish thing, of which he was conscious, in his life." At the age of fifteen years Mr. Wilt became a member to the Lutheran church, and continued a faithful and consistent Christian and "died in the Lord," April 5, 1889, aged 88 years. His wife, known as "Aunt Polly," was born December 5, 1806. She was a lady of kindly ways and beautiful Christian character. She was not only the "sunshine of the home," but everybody enjoyed her company and a visit with "Aunt Polly." She died very suddenly, September 10, 1877. The children of Andrew and Mary Wilt were:

Francis S., born May 17, 1829; married Angeline Linebaugh; resides at Allentown, Pa.

Sara, born June 11, 1832; married Morris J. Heisz; resides at Dushore, Pa.

Judia, born March 27, 1834; married Lyman Marcy; resides in Monroe.

Lydia, born November 5, 1835; married Apollos E. Scureman; resides at Dushore, Pa.

Maria, born June 26, 1839; died, unmarried, September 5, 1899.

Emeline, born June 28, 1843; married Clarence M. Williams; resides at Dushore, Pa.

Lucinda, born July 2, 1846; married Clarence M. Williams; died September 26, 1886.

Jacob Andrew, born September 28, 1848; married Emma I. Wellman; resides in Towanda, Pa. – See "Overton Boys of Mark."

Four other children died young.

James Molyneux, a brother of John, born September 22, 1816, on September 8, 1846, married Miss Esther Tomlinson. They at once began life together in the wilds of Overton, settling on the farm where they spent fifty-two years in faithful toil, prospered and died, highly respected by all. Mr. Molyneux died July 16, 1901, and his wife, April 23, 1897, aged 72 years. Their children were : Watson, Edward, Evelyn (Mrs. Job McCarty), Margaret (Mrs. E. C. Roe), Clara (Mrs. David Warburton), Jabez, Joseph, Charles and Fred. Two others died in childhood.

Jacob Musselman, a native of Northampton county, born June 16, 1796, came to Overton from Lehigh county in 1848. He was a weaver, and followed his occupation many years after coming to the settlement. On June 15, 1828, he married Miss Hannah Eizenhart. They were excellent Christian people. Mr. Musselman died September 25, 1887, in his 92nd year. His wife died May 14, 1890, aged 80 years, 9 months and 20 days. Their children were:

Reuben, born October 13, 1829; married Vialina Kisner; resides at Overton.

Mary, born October 1, 1836; married Curtis R. Heverly; died April 9, 1904 at Macon City, Mo.

Edward, born April 14, 1840; married Clara Francke; died February 28, 1871 at Blossburg, Pa.

Hannah, born February 17, 1843; married Jacob Sherman; lives at Overton.

Ellen, born February 14, 1851; died, unmarried, December 10, 1901.

Anna, born April 24, 1854; married Frank P. Bleiler; resides near Overton.

Cornelius Maloney settled on the Reuben Musselman place. After a few years he moved to other parts. His brother-in-law, Peter McGoy, came in and lived with him. "McGoy was a violinist and furnished music for the young people at their dances."

Kelsus Heath, a soldier of the War of 1812, came from North Towanda in 1841, and made the first improvements on the Brennan place, erecting a log house. He sold to James McGee, who came in 1842, and removed to Sheshequin. McGee occupied the place about four years. It finally (1855) passed into the hands of Andrew Brennan, a bachelor, who occupied and improved the farm until his death.


The Irish and Sugar Ridge Settlers.

The Irish began settling in the township in 1841. Many had been employed upon the North Branch Canal, where work had ceased for the want of appropriations. The times were hard, and the State was, indeed, on the verge of bankruptcy. Erin’s diligent sons must now seek a new field of labor. They had heard of the lands that could be had cheap in the vicinity of the "Heverly settlement" and concluded they would go hither and purchase farms.

Thomas McGovern came to the township in 1841 and purchased the improvement of Daniel Slotery, now included in the farm of Michael Murray. He remained a few years, then moved out of the county with his family. Hugh Riley came in and lived with McGovern.

Owen McCann, who had been employed upon the canal, came in with Thomas McGovern and purchased a tract of 400 acres on Sugar Ridge, and traded a portion of it with Charles Dieffenbaugh for the improvements which he had made upon the Kissell place. Here McCann lived until his death in 1871, He had married Margaret Shotts, who died June 19, 1897, aged 77 years. Their children were: Edward, Mary Ann (Mrs. Edward Francke), Francis, Catherine, James and Eugene.

Edward McGovern, a native of County Cavin, born in 1799, came to America with his family in 1833. Going to Lancaster, Pa. he joined his brother in railroad contracting, which he pursued on different lines, for eighteen years. By shrewd management he acquired a snug little fortune. In 1841 he came to Overton from Schuylkill county and purchased the improvements, made by Baker and Kellogg. He built a saw-mill upon his place on Black creek in 1842, and for some years gave attention to the manufacture of lumber. He owned a large tract of land, did considerable clearing and during the last years of his life devoted his time wholly to farming. He was a man of enterprise and means, and was very active in the move to secure the formation of a new township. In 1851, Mr. McGovern was made the first postmaster of Overton. He was frequently called by his townsmen to fill offices of trust, in which he always demonstrated ability and integrity. In politics he was an "old line Whig," up to 1856, when he became a Democrat, and so remained till the close of his life. Mr. McGovern is remembered as a stirring gentleman of the old school. He was in every respect an excellent and worthful citizen.
His wife was Margaret Gilleese, whom he had married in Ireland. She was a lady who always looked upon the bright side of things, and by her cheering words and deeds of kindness made others happy. Her native wit was brilliant, and she enjoyed mirth in its place. She was a woman of sterling virtues, who left for her children the legacy of a beautiful example. He death occurred April 5, 1888 at the age of 89 years. The children of Edward and Margaret McGovern were:

John – See "Overton Boys of Marks."

Patrick was a railroad contractor several years, made money but lost his property in the South, during the Rebellion. He visited many parts of Europe and saw much of the world. He died at Overton, May 8, 1893, aged 67 years.

Thomas – See "Overton Boys of Mark."

Bernard was a successful contractor; settled and died at Easton, Pa.

Francis, a bright boy, died in childhood in 1844. He was the first grave in the McGovern cemetery.

Bridget married Thomas Harden of Wellsboro, Pa.; died August 24, 1877, aged 49 years.

Anna, a maiden lady, who was a successful teacher, resides at Lancaster, Pa.

Daniel O’Neill, who had been employed upon the North Branch Canal, came to the township in 1842. He purchased a possession of Christian Heverly, near the huckleberry mountain, which he improved and occupied until his death. Mr. O’Neill was a godly man, and one of the best citizens Overton ever had. With malice toward none, his great ambition was to do good, and it may be truthfully said of him, that he was never known to quarrel or law with his neighbors. He was a scion of the nobility of Ireland, and his race is spoken of as "the once proudest and most powerful of the ancient Irish Kings." Mr. O’Neill married Bridget Hopkins, a lady of refinement and wit. Many still remember her kind hospitality and cup of tea, when returning, fatigued, from their huckleberrying trips. She died in February, 1858, aged 42 years. Mr. O’Neill died August 9, 1881, in his 81st year. Their children were:

Philip – See "Overton Boys of Mark."

Daniel L. – See "Overton Boys of Mark."

William Patrick, who distinguished himself in the naval and military service during the Civil War.

James, living in the West.

Bridget, a most estimable lady, who died in young womanhood.

Hugh, living in the West.

William Fawcett was the second settler on Sugar Ridge in 1844. He came in from Sullivan county, where he was born April 20, 1820, and settled along the county line. He cleared and improved a large farm, upon which nearly his whole life was spent. He was a splendid citizen and Christian gentleman. His wife was Catharine Barge. She died in 1893 and Mr. Fawcett, January 9, 1909, aged 89 years.

Thomas Sweeny, a native of County Sligo, Ireland, left his native land in August, 1848, and reached Overton on the 10th of October. Here he tarried over winter, then went to New York state, remaining three years, when he returned to Overton and settled upon the farm, which he has since occupied. At this time the "Ridge" was a great wilderness, full of wild beasts. The only outlet was a foot-path to Campbell’s mill, where the settlers went to get their corn ground. In speaking of his trying experiences, Mr. Sweeny says: "To provide the wants of my family I worked out much, considerable for Joseph Rogers of Elkland, receiving a bushel of corn for a day’s work. Mr. Rogers would never take the Irishman’s money, he said ‘ go only to those who will accommodate in that way.’
"Corn would not grow successfully on new ground, so did not grow it, but wheat, rye, potatoes and cabbage – the Irishman’s dependent staff of life – grew large, never failing. I purchased, for $12, a cow, as did the other Irishmen when they came in. The cow was allowed to roam in the woods to procure her own food. After I got a little patch cleared I always had enough. In the beginning I many times carried a bushel of corn in on my back, and on different occasions, as I was returning from some neighbor’s with a bag of corn upon my back or from mill, would remain in the woods all night for fear of getting lost. Deer were very plentiful. They came in and browsed upon the trees, which I had cut down. In fact, many times they came in droves and had to be driven from my crops. Yes, we saw many sore times; raised buckwheat that made cakes as black as your hat, but was glad to get that."

Thomas Grimes, a native of County Sligo, came to America in 1847, and from Scranton to Overton in 1850, settling the place which he has since occupied. His log cabin was without a door, a quilt being hung up to keep out the cold and wild animals. Mr. Grimes cleared up his entire farm and reared a large family. He is living at the age of 93 years.

Michael Byron, also a native a County Sligo, came in from Scranton with Mr. Grimes, 1850, and located on the place where he still lives. He has been a very industrious and prosperous citizen, and is now said to be the oldest living person in the town.

Bartholomew Mullen, a native of County Mayo, emigrated to America in 1847 and came to Overton in 1851, locating on the farm now occupied by his son, Thomas. He had married Ann Judge, they being the parents of nine children. Mr. Mullen died in 1862, aged 67 years.

James Frawley, a native of County Limerick, joined the "Ridge" settlers in 1851. He had a family of six sons – John, James, Patrick, Michael, Thomas and Timothy, and a daughter, Mary (Mrs. Harry Reagan). His son, Patrick, afterwards occupied the place settled by him. Michael was noted for his strength, being the most powerful man on the "Ridge." He and his brothers, Thomas and Timothy, settled in other parts.

James Shahan, a native of County Limerick, arrived in America in 1842, and came to Overton in 1852, settling on the farm where he spent the rest of his days. After pitching his little log house he made a small clearing and "grubbed among the stumps and stones to raise a little food for the family; worked out much for food or corn for those who had it to spare, but such persons were few."

John Flynn purchased a large tract of land and settled on the John O’Connell place in 1852. His brother, William Flynn, purchased and lived adjoining the Callahan place. After some years the Flynns sold out and moved to Minnesota.

James A. Paine, whose father had purchased for him a large tract of land along the line of the old Genessee Road, came in about 1850 and caused large improvements to be made. He opened a house of public entertainment for the accommodation of raftsmen on their return trips. After about four years Paine traded properties with Mr. Blackman of Monroe.

Jonathan Camp came from Eastern Bradford in 1853, purchased and occupied a portion of the Paine tract. He had a family of seven stalwart sons – Reuben, Henry, Levi, Matthew, Lucius, George and John. Three, Reuben, Henry and Levi, were soldiers in the Civil War, Henry and Levi losing their lives. In the 60’s Mr. Camp moved to Illinois with his family.

William W. Cahill, born June 19, 1813 in Orange county, N.Y., came to Athens in 1827, where he remained until February, 1853, when he removed to Overton and settled in the wilderness in the back part of the town. His hardships and privations were many. He frequently made trips to Towanda with his ox-team, coming or going after night. Mrs. Cahill, with a pail of butter on her arm, often footed it to Towanda and back the same day. This journey of 32 miles was made alone and the greater part of it through a wilderness. By unremitting toil Mr. Cahill cleared up and improved his farm and spent his closing days in comfort. He died December 8, 1893 and is buried in the family plot upon the farm.

James Sheedy, a native of County Limerick, was one of the comers in 1853. He settled and improved the farm now occupied by his son, John, where he died April 30, 1882 aged 61 years.

Timothy Fleming settled the place adjoining Mr. Sheedy in 1853. Here he spent his life in faithful toil and died October 22, 1882, aged 82 years.

Isaac Frear in 1853 settled the place now owned by John Dorsey. After several years he removed from the township.

Loren H. Beagle, another settler in 1853, occupied the place which he afterwards sold to Daniel Lane. He served in the Civil War, after which he took up his residence elsewhere.

Leahy Brothers, Thomas and Patrick, were natives of County Limerick. The former came to the township in 1853, locating at first on the Cusick place and afterwards on the James Frawley farm. He remained in the township only a few years. Patrick came in 1855. He settled and improved the farm now owned by his son, Francis. Here he died September 3, 1888, aged 78 years. These brothers had married sisters of John Flynn. Patrick was a celebrated dancer. When past three score and ten he would take the floor and dance an Irish jig with the expertness which made the young men look on with envy. His son, Thomas, says: "After we had settled on the ‘Ridge’ many were the nights I listened to the hideous howls of wolves; deer were so plentiful they had to be chased off the grain, and would come within a short distance of the house, and try titles with the cow for the licking of salt."

The Luces came to the "Ridge" in 1853. William located on the Cusick place, and Jonah, a blacksmith, had a shop near school house No. 3. They were short residents of the town.

John Obourn settled east of the McHale place in 1853. He served in the Civil War and soon after its close removed from the town.

Other ’53 Comers – Patrick Britton located on the place of afterwards Michael Lane; Patrick Gately on the place of Michael Byron, Jr.; William Annis on property of now Thomas Sweeny. The Buttons and Barbers were here probably a year earlier and lived on the Sullivan place. Mr. Cahill says, "They were a worthless gang, whose principal business was to steal timber and manufacture it into boat oars. Whenever they got a little money from the sale of oars they put in a supply of grog and had a big time."

Keefe Brothers, Dennis, Jeremiah and Patrick, natives of County Kerry, settled on the place below and adjoining Mr. Cahill in 1854. All became permanent residents. Jeremiah is still living.

The Lanes --- John Lane, a native of County CORK, and sons, Dennis, John and Michael, came to the "Ridge" in 1854. Another son, Daniel, followed some years later. Dennis settled the farm opposite John O’Connell, John on the farm adjoining his brother, Michael on the Britton place and Daniel on the Beagle place. The father lived with his son, John. Michael removed to Wilkes-Barre and is the only surviving brother.

Patrick McHale, a native of County Mayo, who emigrated to America 1849, located on the farm in 1855, which he improved and where he met a tragic end, November 3, 1903, by being burned to death.

Patrick Cusick, a native of County Limerick, moved to the "Ridge" in 1855 and occupied his farm until 1886, when he sold and moved to Towanda. He is living at the age of 81 years.

Patrick Callahan, a native of County Cavin, came to the township before Mr. Cusick, but was not as early on the "Ridge." He settled next to Mr. Cusick and there lived until his old age.

Daniel Moore came in 1855, settling on the Level Branch, where he lived until the time of his death – January 14, 1897, aged 69 years.

John McAndrew, a native of County Sligo, settled next to Patrick Gately in 1855. He died August 12, 1859, aged 57 years. In 1855 Owen Gleason also settled on the back part of the "Ridge."

John Mead was one of the earliest settlers on the "Ridge," adjoining Richard Bedford. He sold out and removed West.

The Fredericks – Christian and Philip Frederick about 1855 began an improvement along the old Genessee road a mile or more below Cahill’s. After they left, their log house which was said to be "haunted" went to ruin and decay.

Patrick Dorsey came to the "Ridge" in 1856 and lived on the farm, which he cleared and improved, until the time of his death – April 29, 1901, aged 87 years.

John Sullivan, a native of County Kerry, emigrated to America in 1836. For some years he lived in Western New York and peddled Yankee notions. His calling clung to him and he was known as "Yankee John." In 1858 he came to Overton, locating three years later on the farm, which he cleared up and where he died in 1877, aged 62 years. His wife was Mary Monahan born in County Cork. She died in 1876, aged 61 years. Their children were: Katherine (Mrs. John Callahan), Maggie, Mary, (Mrs. Thomas Coggins). John F., Ellen and Cornelius J. John was for many years a prominent and successful teacher and writing master. Maggie lives with her brother, Cornelius, in Towanda.

Other Ridge Settlers from 1856 were: Matthew Fogerty, Michael Hannon, Patrick and Timothy Collins, Anthony Mullany, John Murray, James Purcell, Richard Cunningham, William Clark, Joel Barns, James Fleming, Nathaniel and Silas Bailey.

Most of the Irish families settling in Overton were from the South of Ireland. When they began their battle with the wild woods, they were poor men, but through industry and economy they carved out fine farms, erected good houses and barns, and have been Overton’s best money-making citizens. While many of these Irishmen were without an education, they saw to it that their children were not neglected in this respect, always taking a deep interest in the public schools, from which many of their sons and daughters have gone forth as teachers and other callings in professional life.

Inhabitants in 1853

The first assessment for Overton, made by Gideon S. Boyles, Assessor, and returned December 16, 1853, contained the following resident taxables:

William Annis
Amasa Heverly
James Molyneux
E. I. Beagle
Christian Heverly
John Molyneux
Loren H. Beagle
Daniel Heverly
Bartholomew Mullen
Franklin Bedford
Daniel Heverly, Jr.
Jacob Musselman
Gideon S. Boyles
Eli Heverly
John Obourn
Patrick Britton
Henry Heverly, 1st.
Daniel O’Neill
Delos Button
Henry Heverly, 2nd.
James A. Paine
James Button
Jacob Heverly
Josiah Rinebold
Osden Button
Jacob Heverly, 2nd.
Lewis Rinebold
Michael Byron
James Heverly
Reuben Rinebold
Wm. W. Cahill
John Heverly
Michael Ronan
Patrick Calahan
Orlando Heverly
Stephen Ruth
Jonathan Camp
Geo. W. Hottenstein
James Shahan
Orange Chase
Jacob Hottenstein
Henry Sherman
Chas. Dieffenbaugh
Dennis Lane
Peter Sherman
Joseph Fawcett
John Lane
James Sheedy
William Fawcett
Thomas Leahy
Isaac Streevy
Timothy Fleming
David Luce
Jacob Streevy
James Frawley
Jonah Luce
John Streevy
Isaac Frear
Stephen Luce
Thomas Streevy
John Flynn
William Luce
Thomas Sweeny
William Flynn
Cornelius Maloney
Hiram Waltman
Patrick Gately
Edward McGovern
William Waltman
Thomas Grines
Owen McCann

The assessor’s report also contains these facts: Total value real estate, $16,456; personal property, $2,205; money at interest, $300; greatest valuation of any one person – Edward McGovern, being $1778, which included $300 at interest; Jacob Heverly stood second on the list, his valuation being $940.


Habits and Customs

Money was a very scarce article among the pioneers, and they were required to dress in the plainest and least expensive manner. Their common habiliments were pantaloons and dresses made from flax for summer wear, and from wool for winter. Roundabouts, or sailor’s jackets, took the place of coats. Calico was less common than silk is now and cost 75 cents a yard. She who could afford a dress made from seven yards of this material wore an "extravagant garment." "The fashion was petticoats and short gowns." Shawls were made from pressed woolen cloth, and the finest home-made linen was bleached and constructed into fine shirts for men and boys.

A lady’s common dress was "copperas and white," as it was called; and "copperas and blue, two and two," for nice. The women wore handkerchiefs as a covering for the head, or bonnets of their own manufacture. Garments were made to wear the longest possible, as it was very uncertain when the next could be had. The boys had hats and caps made by their mothers from woolen cloth or straw. Some wore knit caps also, until "seal-skin" caps, as they were called, came in fashion. Garments were fastened together with buttons constructed out of thread.

Nearly every wife had her spinning-wheel and loom, and manufactured her own cloth, while Mrs. John Heverly wove for the balance of the neighborhood. Each did her own coloring, and the bark from a soft maple tree, hemlock, butternut or witch-hazel was used for dyeing purposes, also log-wood and smart-weed. Copperas, alum and sorrel were used to set the colors.

During the summer season, the boys, girls and women generally went barefooted, as did some of the men. Their boots and shoes for winter wear were coarse, and made by the heads of the several families, until Messrs. Slotery, Rinebold and Wilt came in, who were more practical shoemakers.

The food of the pioneers was coarse and consisted of corn and rye bread, sometimes wheat with potatoes. The last were generally baked in the fire-place by covering them over with ashes and coals. Mush and milk was not an uncommon diet. Venison could be had for the killing, and brook trout for the catching. Deer and bear meat was made more appetizing by smoking it. Jerked venison was also a favorite article on the bill of fare. The flesh of the raccoon, woodchuck and squirrel was utilized when larger game could not be had. Sometimes bread was made out of wheat and rye bran. Milk was the main dependence, and was made a most palatable dish in several ways. Hogs were raised and fatted upon beech-nuts.

Stoves with ovens had not been invented, and baking was done in fire-places and stone bake ovens. The raw material for bread and cake was prepared and put in the bake-kettle (a low kettle-shaped iron pot with a cover), which was then placed over coals on the hearthstone. Upon the cover of the kettle, coals were also placed so that the baking would be more evenly done. Johnny-cakes were baked in the long handled frying pans, which were heated over the fire-place. The bake-kettle remained in use for some years, when it was supplanted by the tin oven, which could be heated before the fire-place and every side readily shifted against the blaze as the cooking required.

Maple sugar was used for sweetening purposes, and corn-cobs were burned in the bake-kettle cover to get a substitute for saleratus. Maple sugar and honey took the place of butter, and bear’s fat was used for shortening. Fried cakes were baked in pots of bear and raccoon fat. Browned rye, peas, beechnuts, chestnuts and chickory were substituted for coffee, and sage, thyme, peppermint, spearmint, evans root, spice bush, sweet fern, tansy and hemlock bows for tea. Imported tea and coffee were too costly, and could only be afforded when the "good mothers" had company.

Herbs of all kinds were gathered and used for teas in sickness, and each had its specific cure. For instance, elderbow, catnip and wormwood were used for children and boneset, pennyroyal, etc. for adults. There were no physicians for miles and "one person was the other’s doctor."

Greased paper hung over an opening in the wall afforded light for the cabins in the daytime. At night they were illuminated by the light given out from the huge fire-places, and pitchpine splinters stuck in the chimney jambs. This furnished sufficient light for the mothers to sew, spin and weave by; for the fathers to mend and make shoes, and the boys and girls to get their lessons. A supply of pitchpine knots was generally put in before winter. Deer fat and lard were sometimes used for illuminating purposes, but not frequently. Tallow lamps were finally introduced, and were used when tallow could be had or lard spared. They were a cup-like construction to contain animal fats, and could be hung against the wall. One end of a piece of cloth, answering as a wick, was dropped into the cup, and the other end, which hung out, was lighted. Tallow candles next followed, and subsequently lamps for burning coal oil.

The time of day was determined by "sun-marks" or noon marks upon the door or window frame. Finally, the old-fashioned clocks, without cases and with long cords, were brought in and sold at fabulous prices. This was in 1830, and the first to purchase were Christian, Daniel, John and Henry Heverly. Matches had not yet been invented, and fire was made by striking a piece of flint and steel (or the back of a jack-knife) together, causing a spark, which was caught in a piece of punk (an inflammable substance, formed from decayed wood, which was always kept in supply). "Borrowing fire," as it was called, was not an infrequent occurrence. Wooden pails were in use, and the neighborhood supplied in this line by Henry Sherman. Wooden spoons and forks, also pewter plated, spoons and other table pieces were in use. "Gores" were substituted for dippers, and sap troughs sometimes used for cradles. Brooms were made out of young birch and hickories.

Logging and chopping bees were common, and the men most cheerfully turned out with their ox-teams, or came with their axes to assist their neighbor in getting a start. On such an occasion a sheep would be killed, and boiled mutton and pot-pie had in abundance for dinner and supper.

Spinning bees were also in fashion. The lady getting up the bee would distribute tow among her lady friends, and on a day set apart they would bring in their skeins and enjoy a visit and supper with her. The affair generally wound up in the evening by a dance, or "snap-and-wink-em," and other games. Another practice was for the gallants of the neighborhood to go to the home of the lady who was to be favored and procure a quantity of tow, which was distributed among their sweethearts. On an evening agreed upon, each swain took his girl with her skein to the home of their friend, where several hours were enjoyed in merry-making. Sometimes, however, the ladies would take their spinning wheels under their arms and go to the house of a friend, do a day’s work and enjoy a visit together at the same time. Quilting and sewing parties were common, and mothers and daughters alike came with their needles to assist their friend in need. Husking bees, apple-cuts and spelling schools were more of modern date, and dancing was the chief entertainment of the young people.

Every mother taught her daughter to spin, weave, make garments, bread, in fact everything required of a housewife, and the young lady who showed herself the best skilled in these arts was the first to find a suitor. Courting is said to have been "short and sweet" and this is the way one of the "boys" of the "happy past" remembers it:

"In the merry days of boyhood when we never knew a care
Greater than the mumps or measles or a mother’s cut of hair.
When a sore toe was a treasure and a stonebruise on the heel
Filled the other boys with envy which they tried not to conceal.
There were many treasured objects on the farm we held most dear,
Orchard, fields, the creek we swam in, and the old spring cold and clear;
Over there the woods of hick’ry and of oak so deep and dense,
Looming up behind the outlines of the old rail fence.

On its rails the quail would whistle early summer morn.
Calling to their hiding fellows in the field of waving corn,
And the meadow larks and robins on the stakes would sit and sing
Till the forest shades behind them with their melody would ring;
There the catbird and the jaybird sat and called each other names,
And the squirrels and the chipmunks played the catch and catch-me games.
And the gartersnake was often unpleasant evidence
In the grasses in the corners of the old rail fence.

As we grew to early manhood when we thought the country girls
In the diadem of beauty were the very fairest pearls;
Oft from spellin’ school and meetin’ or the jolly shuckin’ bee
Down the old lane we would wander with a merry little "she."
On the plea of being tired (just the country lover lie),
On a grassy seat we’d linger in the moonlight, she and I,
And we’d paint a future picture touched with colors most intense
As we sat there in the corner of the old rail fence.

There one night in happy dreaming we were sitting hand in hand,
Up so near the gates of heaven we could almost hear the band,
When she heard a declaration whispered in her lis’ning ear –
One she often since has told me she was mighty glad to hear.
On my head there’s now a desert fringed with foliage of gray,
And there’s many a thread of silver in her dear old head today,
Yet the flame of love is burning in our bosoms as intense
As it burned in the corner of that old rail fence."

If the young swain afforded a horse, he would take his lady love riding by placing her on his horse behind himself.
Modes of traveling and conveyance were in novel contrast with those of today. It was common to see the footman traveling with his knapsack on his back. Riding on horseback was the usual mode of conveyance from place to place, and even of making long journeys. Sometimes a gentleman and lady, or a father and mother with two children, might be seen pursuing their way in this style; and not infrequently parties to a hymeneal engagement betook themselves to the house of the minister or magistrate. Oxen took the place of horses, and in the ox-cart or sled families were conveyed to social gatherings or places of worship. As the country improved, a chaise or gig was occasionally seen, and in due time wagons, stages and coaches were introduced.

In lieu of wagons, long sleds were generally used in hauling hay and grain and in making trips to mill. Sometimes, however, hay was hauled to the stack by placing a bunch or more upon a brush, which formed a sort of sled; and not infrequently carried by two men for some distance by running two poles under a bunch with a man at each end. Farming implements were very imperfect, as compared with those of modern invention. A plough was used with one handle and a wooden mould board; a crotched sapling with holes bored through and supplied with wooden pins, answered as a harrow. Grain was sometimes "brushed in" by dragging a hemlock bush over the ground; pitchforks and hoes were manufactured by blacksmiths, and were very clumsy articles. The "Dutch scythe," which was sharpened by pounding to an edge with a hammer, was in use. Reaping with the sickle or hand-cradle was the slow and tedious method of cutting grain, which was threshed with flails and cleaned by shaking it with a hand-fan, a very laborious task. Fanning mills were not introduced until about 1825.

The greatest economy had to be practiced, and the wife vied with her husband in trying to get along. She not only did the work pertaining to the house, but helped to gather the hay and grain, and not infrequently assisted in the fallow, or the sugar bush. The people took great delight in visiting each other, and would generally go on foot or with ox-sleds. A meal was always had together, the hostess giving the best the house afforded, which was sometimes one thing and sometimes another. The guest never forgot her knitting work or sewing, and would visit and work at the same time. The kitchen was the parlor, sitting room and all. There were no castes then, and the old people say – "those were the happiest days we ever saw." One neighbor envied not another, but, on the contrary, did all in his power to encourage and help along. Such was the true, Christian life of the pioneers.

Hay was scarce, and cattle fed largely upon browse – the tender shoots of trees, especially of the maple and basswood. Cows roamed in the woods, and were found by the tinkle of the bells, which they wore about their necks. Pigs were fatted upon hickory nuts, or taken to the beechnut woods.

Liquor was always had in abundance at chopping, logging and mowing bees, raisings, shooting matches and weddings. It was a very common drink – even church members and preachers imbibing. The best could be had for six shillings a gallon, and when a tippler got boozy, he was not a week in getting over it. "Spirits" were regarded a necessity, and every family kept a supply.

The household furniture was very plain, and was generally made by the pioneers themselves. Not infrequently would the men back a load of maple sugar to Towanda and Monroeton. Daniel Heverly (1st), the Hottensteins and others used to make visiting trips on foot to Lehigh county.

The First Quilting Party, ---"Aunt Charlotte" Ormsby related the following: "In the year 1817, after Almira Heverly had got settled in her new home in Overton, some of us girls who had been former associates, concluded we would make her a quilting party, and, accordingly, walked in from Albany. We found her down on the flats in her little log house of one room. We took down the bed, in order to make room for the quilt. We quilted and visited at the same time, and enjoyed ourselves very much. Finally the quilt was gotten off, when it was proposed we have a ‘french four.’ There were just boys enough, with a girl to spare. I was counted the best singer and had to furnish music for the rest to dance. After the evening’s entertainment had concluded, a couple of the boys took Miama Sweet and myself upon horses with themselves and brought us through the mud to Albany."

Big Mowing Bee. --- About the year 1840 Isaac Streevy had a big mowing bee, and men came with scythes from Monroe, Albany and surrounding country to make a quick harvest, determine who was the best mower and have a feast of honey with the necessary liquid refreshments of the times. The large crowd soon accomplished their task and had a "rousing" good time. Some, however, ate too much honey and for a time were in painful attitudes, which afforded amusement for those who had tried the "sweet trick" themselves. Daniel Heverly, yet living, was "whisky boy" on the occasion.

Game and Hunting Matches.---All the early settlers were required to keep guns to protect their stock against the ravages of panthers, wolves and bears. None of the pioneers made a business of hunting, only using the gun as necessity required in supplying a depleted larder. Of the sons, Eli Heverly was the most noted hunter and crack marksman. When only smaller game was left, hunting matches came in vogue. There were several forms of these. Some occupied a week or more, and sometimes the match would be for the best results during an entire season. A match often meant a contest between two sportsmen for half a day. In such a case the contestants usually took opposite directions in their quest for game, meeting at a given place and time. He who had the smallest amount of game either gave it to the winner or paid for a treat or supper. The hunting match affording the greatest satisfaction occupied about three days and had from ten to fifty participants on each side. There was a captain for each side, and the score was computed by means of tables agreed upon. For instance, a hawk or owl counted 100 points, crow 50, woodchuck 50, squirrel 10, blackbird 10, etc. Usually only the heads of birds and ears or tails of animals were brought in for the count. When the contesting parties met there was a test of skill as marksmen, and sometimes in feats of strength and wrestling. The side having the smaller score paid for the dinner or supper, which had been arranged for all.

Surrounding Dangers. ---"Panthers and wolves were playing havoc with the stock in the settlement, and the Wilcoxes learning of this fact, came in from Albany one evening and laid with others for the depredators. They waited and watched, but no panther came. Finally toward morning, despairing of all hopes in making a catch they fell asleep, and while the were enjoying themselves in ‘happy dreamland,’ a panther came, killed a yearling, filled his stomach with blood and again escaped to his secreted home in the wilderness."

In 1817, when Amasa, the first child of John Heverly, was a baby his father was required to do considerable working out. While he was at Greenwood, Mrs. Heverly remained alone with her child and attended to the stock. Every evening, with babe in arms, she would go in search of the cows. One evening, however, her tramp was most discouraging. She followed the tracks and foot-path leading to Sugar Ridge, but heard no tinkle of the bell. On she pursued through the wilderness and at last caught the tinkle in the distance. When she found the cows she was three miles from home, and before she could return darkness had fallen. To her chagrin upon reaching home, she found the fire out and no means of starting another, as Mr. Heverly had the steel and gun with him. No supper could be had, and what would she do for herself and child! When almost yielding in despair, a rap was heard at the door. She opened it, and to her great joy found Frederick Kissell, who was returning from a hunt. He soon had a fire blazing for the comfort and relief of the brave woman.

In speaking of their dangerous surroundings, Mrs. Hannah (Heverly) Jones says: "One evening myself and sister Betsey had been sent to the clearing after the cows. I was then about ten years old. We had started for home, when there came out of the brush near us a monster bear. I wanted to run to the house and tell father, so he could come with his gun and kill the beast. But as we had been taught that we would not be disturbed by a bear so long as we remained with the cattle, and Betsey being afraid to chance it alone, we hurried on with the cows as fast as we could, followed some distance by the bear. We reached home safely with the cattle, but by the time father got around with his gun, Bruin had scented danger and made his escape."

The late Myron Kellogg of Monroe relates that in one of his early courting experiences, as he was returning from Overton late at night, a pack of wolves struck his track and soon made the woods ring with their hideous howls. He hastened as fast as possible, the wolves pursuing and gaining. The race was growing more exciting every minute, which seemed almost hours, but he finally reached the John Heverly place first and was secure. Mr. Kellogg concluded by saying this was the last pleasure trip he made to Overton after night.

Roads. – The first out-let from the Heverly settlement was the old turnpike, which crossed the huckleberry mountain, thence passed north to the Schrader creek and following it to Greenwood. The next egress was to the "Forks." Daniel Heverly and his sons cut a road, leading from his place down by G.L. Rinebold’s, thence bearing to the left to below the Sherman house, thence up to the ridge beyond the O’Brien place and following the ridge to Ezra Roe’s, thence to the "Forks."

The Albany settlers found their way into the settlement by following up Bahr creek to the Morrison place; then bearing to the left struck the public road a little above Joseph Heverly’s residence. At first they came in on foot, but afterwards cut a road sufficient to allow them to make the passage on horseback. This course became known as Albany road, which, with some changes, was opened as a public road in 1833.

A road was also cut out across Hatch Hill, connecting the old turnpike with the new. This was improved and made a public road in 1834. In 1833 a public road was also laid out, running through the John Heverly place across the huckleberry mountain and terminating at the Burr Ridgway’s saw-mill on the Berwick turnpike in Monroe.

The earliest road constructed through any part of Overton was the Genesee Road, the first thoroughfare between the North and West branches of the Susquehanna, opened about 1802. Locally, this road started near Millstone Run, thence in a southwesterly course passed through the central part of the town by the Cahill place to Eldredsville, then to Muncy. This road was of use only to travelers. It was half a century before there was any road connecting it with the Heverly settlement, or before any one had settled on this thoroughfare in Overton. It was called the Genesee Road, because it afforded the first thoroughfare to emigrants from Southern Pennsylvania, Maryland and Virginia to the rich valley of the Genesee river, then the popular rage. Even earlier than this road, another in the same locality had been surveyed (1792) as the "Harris Road." It, however, was never opened.



The people of Overton have always taken a commendable interest in their schools, and have fitted a number of excellent teachers for their important work. The Overton boys have no mean record as students, and several have earned names, of which the town of their nativity may well feel proud. Eighty-five years ago, the first school had not been taught in the township, nor a school house erected. At present, the town supports six schools, including a graded school, making a school to every 80 inhabitants, or proportionately the greatest number of schools of any township in the county.

The First School House in the township was built in 1826. It was a small hut 15 x 16 feet, covered with clapboards. The seats were made of slabs with round-side up. This building stood east of the public road a few rods north-east of the residence of Mrs. Jacob Heverly. The first teacher in the old log house was Anna Kellogg of Monroe. She received 50 cents per week for teaching reading, writing, spelling and "some ciphering." She taught for a couple of months only during the winter of 1826-27, as the people’s means were limited. Amasa Heverly, who was one of her pupils, says: "Sam, Barney and Jacob Hunsinger, then young men, came in from Sullivan county and boarded in the neighborhood to take their first lessons in reading. Other pupils were John and Jacob Streevy, James and William Heverly." After Anna Kellogg, Olivia Ladd and Hannah Hoagland taught in the log school house.
Mrs. Jacob Heverly taught in the winter of 1829-’30 in her own house, which was a log dwelling, and stood near where the residence of Fred Haverly now is. Catharine Dunmore taught school in Jacob Heverly’s new barn, now the old barn on the place of Fred Haverly, in the summer of 1835. One of the pupils says: "While we were busy about our lessons, a load of hay was brought in."
Elizabeth Lord (Mrs. Joseph Rogers) taught in Henry Sherman’s log house, which stood in the vale below Overton village, in the winter of 1835-’36. Of her experience as teacher in Overton, Mrs. Rogers says: "The house had two rooms, one was used as a cooper shop by Mr. Sherman and the other, the one in which the school was kept, was the kitchen, bedroom, etc. We kept warm with some difficulty, and went on with our work amid the confusion arising from the cooper shop. Mr. Sherman’s children were without shoes, but they did not seem to mind the cold much. The branches that we gave attention to were spelling, reading, writing and some arithmetic. A goose quill was used for a pen, and the children made their own ink by boiling up soft maple bark, and added a little alum or copperas. The sums were generally worked out upon a shingle. I boarded ‘round, and it was some time before I could get accustomed to the German habits and their sauer-kraut un spheck, etc. Alma Heverly spoke English and most generously bestowed her hospitality, and otherwise did her best to make it pleasant for me. I shall never forget her kindness."
Jacob Hottenstein taught a German school at Daniel Kaufman’s in the winter of 1834-’35; Mrs. Kaufman was one of his pupils. The log house had but one room and stood in the field about 50 rods north of the late residence of Martin O’Brien. In the winter of 1836-’37, Mary Bowman taught a school in Christian Heverly’s new house.

The First Public School was taught by Mrs. Charles Dieffenbaugh in the fall of 1837, in her own house. A portion of this building is yet standing, and occupied by J. L. Shaffer on the McCann place. Mr. Dieffenbaugh was a director for this part of Albany township. In 1838 a plank house was erected on a corner of Isaac Streevy’s lot, about 40 rods north of the site of the log school house. Maggie Molyneux taught the first school in this building. In 1860 the plank building was moved off and a framed house erected on the same site. Ruth Ingham (Mrs. Ornal Kellogg) taught the first school in the new school house. The last named building stood until after the formation of the Independent School District, when upon the erection of the graded school building in 1878, it was torn down. The graded school was opened in the winter of 1878, with Isaac R. Fleming principal, and Miss Anna Higgins, assistant. The first school building erected on Sugar Ridge was in about 1855. It was a log structure, one story high, and stood midway between Callahan’s bridge and the present site of school house No. 3.
In his report to the Department in 1856, Superintendent Guyer says: "Overton township is new and poor in physical wealth, but rich in good will and abundant in generous acts to the common school cause. Education needs no better friends than those sustaining this enterprise in Overton. They paid 13 mills school tax, and declare a willingness to pay 26 if the 13 will not keep up their schools. Who wants better school men? The moral, social and political relations which men bear to each other, and those agencies which bring the most good to individuals and communities, are better understood and more earnestly contended for in little Overton, than in many places that make more pretensions. In a small log school house, 16 feet square, I found a living, working teacher, furnishing the intellection, making ornaments for society and genius for the state, where the rags of poverty are more abundant than the trinketry of the rich. It is in such places that the best and greatest of the land are found, and what a source of wealth it would open to the state, if she would place ample schooling within the reach of all such in her broad domain. There is but one other school house in Overton. It is in the Heverly settlement and is a small poor frame. Have seen two fair schools in it. One other school is kept in the dwelling house of Jonathan Camp. The directors are making arrangements and will build school houses so soon as the unseated land tax is paid." Overton has the credit of being the first township in the county to abolish the system of boarding around.
The following have been the teachers in District No. 1, or what is now the Overton Independent District, from the first school to the present time:

Anna Kellogg ---------------------------------------- ---------- --------- --- 1826-‘27
Mary Heverly--------------------------------------------------- ------------ 1829-‘30
Olivia Ladd------------------------------------------------------ ------------ 1831-‘32
Hannah Hoagland---------------------------------------------- 1832 -
Jacob Hottenstein---------------------------------------------- ------------ 1832-‘33
Josephine Schrader-------------------------------------------- ------------ 1833-‘34
Catharine Dunmore-------------------------------------------- 1835 -

Elizabeth Lord-------------------------------------------------- ------------ 1835-‘36
Mary Ann Bowman-------------------------------------------- ------------ 1836-‘37
Martha Dienffenbaugh---------------------------------------- 1837
Margaret Molyneux------------------------------------------- 1838
Eugenia Lyon-------------------------------------------------- ---------- 1838-‘39
William Mullen------------------------------------------------ ---------- 1839-‘40
Eliza McMicken----------------------------------------------- 1840
Mary Ann Wilson--------------------------------------------- ---------- 1840-‘41
Mary Ann Wilson--------------------------------------------- 1841
Robert W. Henley--------------------------------------------- ---------- 1841-‘42
Mary Ann Tillison-------------------------------------------- 1843
Charles Pierce------------------------------------------------- ---------- 1843-‘44
Mary Terwilliger---------------------------------------------- ---------- 1844-‘45
Elizabeth Sterigere-------------------------------------------- ---------- 1845-‘46
Solomon B. Tomlinson--------------------------------------- ---------- 1846-‘47
Elizabeth Bull-------------------------------------------------- ---------- 1847-‘48
Zachariah Annable-------------------------------------------- ---------- 1848-‘49
Levi Rogers---------------------------------------------------- ---------- 1849-‘50
Dwight Kellum------------------------------------------------ ---------- 1849-‘50
Angeline Ormsby--------------------------------------------- 1850
Dwight Kellum------------------------------------------------ ---------- 1850-‘51
Philena Roberts----------------------------------------------- 1851
William Waltman--------------------------------------------- ---------- 1851-‘52
Jemima Wilcox------------------------------------------------ 1852
Edward McAffee---------------------------------------------- ---------- 1852-‘53
Sewell Lathrop------------------------------------------------ ---------- 1853-‘54
George P. Tracy----------------------------------------------- ---------- 1854-‘55
Ellen Corbin--------------------------------------------------- 1855
Lucy Preston-------------------------------------------------- ---------- 1855-‘56
Maria Heverly------------------------------------------------ 1856 -
David Knapp------------------------------------------------- ---------- 1856-‘57
Sarah Little--------------------------------------------------- 1857
Harriet Ingham----------------------------------------------- ---------- 1857-‘58
Maria Heverly----------------------------------------------- ---------- 1858-‘59
Jennie Francke----------------------------------------------- 1859
Maria Heverly------------------------------------------------ ----------- 1859-‘60
Ruth Ingham-------------------------------------------------- ----------- 1860-’61
Anna McGovern--------------------------------------------- ----------- 1861-‘62
Maggie Cokely ---------------------------------------------- ----------- 1862-‘63
Mary Ryan---------------------------------------------------- ----------- 1863-‘64
Maggie Heverly---------------------------------------------- ----------- 1864-‘65
Mary Ann Conemy------------------------------------------ ----------- 1865-‘66
Ellen Bennett------------------------------------------------- 1866 -
Addie Schrader----------------------------------------------- ----------- 1866-‘67

Ellen Bennett------------------------------------------------- ----------- 1867-‘68
Katie McDonald---------------------------------------------- ---------- 1868-‘69
Wealthy Cole---------------------------------------------------- 1869
John F. Sullivan ------------------------------------------------ ----------- 1869-‘70
Ellen Conemy--------------------------------------------------- 1870 -
Charles Molyneux---------------------------------------------- ----------- 1870-‘71
Charles Molyneux --------------------------------------------- 1871 -
Charles Molyneux --------------------------------------------- ---------- 1871-’72
Mary Kelly ------------------------------------------------------ ---------- 1872-‘73
J. Andrew Wilt-------------------------------------------------- 1873 -
Bernice Kellogg------------------------------------------------ ---------- 1873-‘74
Ellen Sullivan -------------------------------------------------- 1874 -
Mary D. Scanlin------------------------------------------------ ---------- 1874-‘75
Hannah C. Musselman---------------------------------------- 1875 -
Mary D. Scanlin------------------------------------------------ ---------- 1875-‘76
Belinda Clark -------------------------------------------------- 1876 -
Clarence M. Williams----------------------------------------- ---------- 1876-‘77
Anna Higgins -------------------------------------------------- 1877 -
Isaac R. Fleming------------------------------------------------ ----------- 1877-‘78
Augusta M. Park------------------------------------------------ 1878 -

Graded School

Isaac R. Fleming------------------------------------------------ ---------- 1878-‘79
Ellen Corbin----------------------------------------------------- 1855
Lucy Preston----------------------------------------------------- ---------- 1855-‘56
Maria Heverly--------------------------------------------------- 1856 -
David Knapp---------------------------------------------------- ----------- 1856-‘57
Sarah Little------------------------------------------------------ 1857 --
Harriet Ingham------------------------------------------------- ----------- 1857-‘58
Maria Heverly--------------------------------------------------- ----------- 1858-‘59
Jennie Francke-------------------------------------------------- 1859 --
Maria Heverly--------------------------------------------------- ------------- 1859-‘60
Ruth Ingham----------------------------------------------------- ------------- 1860-’61
Anna McGovern------------------------------------------------- ------------- 1861-‘62
Maggie Cokely--------------------------------------------------- ------------- 1862-’63
Mary Ryan-------------------------------------------------------- ------------- 1863-’64
Maggie Heverly-------------------------------------------------- ------------- 1864-‘65
Mary Ann Conemy---------------------------------------------- ------------- 1965-‘66
Ellen Bennett----------------------------------------------------- 1866 ---
Addie Schrader--------------------------------------------------- ------------- 1866-’67
Ellen Bennett----------------------------------------------------- ------------- 1867-‘68
Katie McDonald------------------------------------------------- ------------- 1868-‘69
Weathly Cole---------------------------------------------------- 1869 -
John F. Sullivan------------------------------------------------- ------------- 1869-‘70

Ellen Conemy--------------------------------------------------- 1870 ---
Charles Molyneux---------------------------------------------- ------------- 1870-‘71
Charles Molyneux---------------------------------------------- 1871 ----
Charles Moyneux----------------------------------------------- ------------- 1871-‘72
Mary Kelly----------------------------------------------------- ------------- 1872-‘73
J. Andrew Wilt-------------------------------------------------- 1873 ---
Bernice Kellogg------------------------------------------------- ------------- 1873-‘74
Ellen Sullivan --------------------------------------------------- 1874 ---
Mary D. Scanlin------------------------------------------------- ------------- 1874-‘75
Hannah C. Musselman----------------------------------------- 1875 ---
Mary D. Scanlin------------------------------------------------- ------------- 1875-‘76
Belinda Clark--------------------------------------------------- 1876 --
Clarence M. Williams------------------------------------------ ------------- 1876-‘77
Anna Higgins---------------------------------------------------- 1877 --
Isaac R. Fleming------------------------------------------------- ------------- 1877-‘78
Augusta M. Park------------------------------------------------- 1878 --

Graded School

Isaac R. Fleming------------------------------------------------- ------------- 1878-‘79
Anna Higgins----------------------------------------------------- ------------- 1878-‘79
Clement F. Heverly---------------------------------------------- 1879 -
George L. Black-------------------------------------------------- ------------- 1879-’80
Augusta M. Park------------------------------------------------- ------------- 1879-‘80
Albert T. Bronson------------------------------------------------ 1880 ---
Cora Bowman---------------------------------------------------- 1880 ---
Benson Landon-------------------------------------------------- ------------- 1880-’81
Augusta M. Park------------------------------------------------ ------------- 1880-‘81
Clayton M. Osborn---------------------------------------------- 1881 ---
Clayton M. Osborn---------------------------------------------- ------------- 1881-’82
Clarence M. Williams------------------------------------------- ------------- 1881-‘82
Barbara Clark ---------------------------------------------------- 1882 ---
Maurice Clark---------------------------------------------------- ------------- 1882-‘83
Libbie M. Bushnell----------------------------------------------- ------------- 1882-‘83
Blanche Babcock----------------- 1883 --
Charles H. Crawford--------------------------------------------- -------------- 1883-‘84
Fannie Woodburn------------------------------------------------ -------------- 1883-‘84
Nettie Hottenstein------------------------------------------------ 1884
---------Charles H. Crawford--------------------------------------------- -------------- 1884-‘85
Nettie Hottenstein------------------------------------------------ -------------- 1884-‘85
Augusta M. Park-------------------------------------------------- 1885 --
Edward H. Brown------------------------------------------------ -------------- 1885-‘86
Nettie Hottenstein------------------------------------------------ -------------- 1885-‘86
Edgar R. Park----------------------------------------------------- 1886 --
Nettie Hottenstein------------------------------------------------ 1886 --

Joseph B. Bowman----------------------------------------------- -------------- 1886-‘87
Orra E. Musselman---------------------------------------------- -------------- 1886-‘87
Lina Dieffenbaugh-------------------------------------------- 1887 --
William B. Beaumont------------------------------------------ ------------ 1887-‘88
Louisa Ormsby-------------------------------------------------- ------------ 1887-‘88
Eva J. Squires--------------------------------------------------- 1888 -
Lou Hoyt--------------------------------------------------------- 1888 -
Clement F. Heverly--------------------------------------------- ------------ 1888-‘89
Eunice M. Horton----------------------------------------------- ------------ 1888-‘89
Clement F. Heverly--------------------------------------------- ------------ 1889-’89
Charles Molyneux---------------------------------------------- ------------ 1889-’90
James P. Murray------------------------------------------------ ------------ 1889-’90
Elfie Lancaster-------------------------------------------------- 1890 -
Edwin Watkins------------------------------------------------ ------------ 1890-‘91
James McDonald---------------------------------------------- ------------ 1890-‘91
Elfie Lancaster------------------------------------------------- 1891 --
John C. Lee----------------------------------------------------- ------------ 1891-‘92
Elfie Lancaster------------------------------------------------- ------------ 1891-’92
Elfie Lancaster------------------------------------------------- 1892 --
Ella O’Brien-------------------------------------------------- 1892 --
Arthur B. Monroe---------------------------------------------- ------------ 1892-‘93
Ella O’Brien---------------------------------------------------- ------------ 1892-‘93
Ella O’Brien---------------------------------------------------- 1893 ---
Irvine D. Haverly---------------------------------------------- ------------ 1893-‘94
Ella O’Brien---------------------------------------------------- ------------ 1893-’94
Charles R. Montgomery-------------------------------------- ------------ 1894-‘95
Charles R. Montgomery-------------------------------------- ------------ 1895-‘96
John A. Regan------------------------------------------------- ------------ 1896-‘97
Samuel M. Huston--------------------------------------------- ------------ 1897-‘98
Charles M. Bender--------------------------------------------- ------------ 1898-‘99
Elfie Lancaster------------------------------------------------- ------------ 1898-‘99
Charles R. Montgomery-------------------------------------- ------------ 1899-‘00
Jewel M. O’Brien--------------------------------------------- ------------ 1899-‘00
Charles R. Montgomery--------------------------------------- ------------ 1900-‘01
Jewel M. O’Brien---------------------------------------------- ------------ 1900-‘01
Frank P. Layman----------------------------------------------- ------------ 1901-‘02
Jewel M. O’Brien---------------------------------------------- ------------ 1901-‘02
Paul D. Heverly------------------------------------------------ ------------ 1902-‘03
Alice Corcoran------------------------------------------------- ------------ 1902-‘03
Paul D. Heverly------------------------------------------------ ------------ 1903-‘04
Alice Corcoran------------------------------------------------- ------------ 1903-‘04
William L. Stuthers-------------------------------------------- ------------ 1904-‘05
Leona R. Bahl-------------------------------------------------- ------------ 1904-‘05
Oliver Bender-------------------------------------------------- ------------ 1905-‘06

Alice Corcoran ------------------------------------------------ ------------ 1905-‘06
Oliver Bender--------------------------------------------------- ------------ 1906-‘07
Elizabeth O’Brien------------------------------------------------ ------------ 1906-‘07
David McNeal ---------------------------------------------------- ------------ 1907-‘08
Cora E. Warburton----------------------------------------------- ------------ 1907-‘08
F. Boyd Miller---------------------------------------------------- ------------ 1908-‘09
Elizabeth R. Jennings-------------------------------------------- ------------ 1908-‘09
F. Boyd Miller---------------------------------------------------- ------------ 1909-‘10
Elizabeth R. Jennings-------------------------------------------- ------------ 1909-‘10

The Churches.

Overton has been noted for her many ardent Christian mothers, and it can, indeed, be said that all at one time in the new settlement were church members.

A Methodist Class was organized in about 1823 by Philetus Parkhurst at the house of Daniel Heverly, 2nd. A Methodist Class was organized in about 1823 by Philetus Parkhurst at the house of Daniel Heverly, 2nd. The members were Christian Heverly and wife, Henry Heverly and wife and John Heverly and wife. Amasa and James Heverly, then children, were baptized. As others came in the little class grew gradually. Among the early members, Mary Heverly is spoken of as a lady very gifted in prayer, generally leading in the singing, and was frequently called upon to close the meeting in prayer. Perhaps the first Methodist to preach in the township was Daniel Wilcox of Franklin, followed by Parkhurst of Canton.

Parkhurst, Stocking and Preston were on the circuit together. It required six weeks to make the circuit, which extended through Overton, thence to Ellis’ or the Forks and Hillsgrove, down Muncy creek to Williamsport, up Lycoming creek through a portion of Tioga county, then to Canton, down Towanda creek to Monroeton, thence to Albany and Overton. Meetings were held at private dwellings until after the erection of the log school house and the more modern ones. Avery, Depew and Nathan Fellows were among the early Methodist itinerants.

In 1873, a neat and commodious Methodist Episcopal church was erected near Overton village. Since then there has been preaching every Sunday, and a prosperous Sabbath school maintained. Overton and New Albany constitute the charge.
The pioneers made their first attempt for a church building in the latter part of the 30’s. A site was selected near the McCann burying ground and timber for the frame-work of the building gotten out. The property on which the church stands changed hands and, depression in money matters following, the enterprise was abandoned.

A German Reformed Class was organized in 1830. "Aunt Betsy" Streevy says: "the Sunday following my marriage – which was Easter Sunday – John Miller preached at Daniel Heverly’s (2nd) and took those into church that had been taught their catechism by Jacob Hottenstein. Several belonged to that denomination before coming to Overton. Miller preached every four weeks." The members of this class were Jacob Hottenstein and wife, Daniel Heverly and wife, Daniel Heverly, Jr. and wife, Isaac Streevy and wife, Christian Ruth, and others not residing in the town. Miller resided in Sullivan county and made his trips on foot. He was a Lutheran, but preached for both denominations. The Shermans, Wilts, Rinebolds and others were Lutherans.

Rev. Schmeckenbecker was the next who preached to these denominations here. While on the charge he was drowned in crossing Mehoopany creek, about 1839.
Carl L. Erle was a regular Lutheran minister and began preaching in the school house in 1843. He lived in Colley, Sullivan county, sixteen miles distant, and made the journey back and forth on foot for several years.

In 1855, members of the Reformed and Lutheran denomination erected a small church building, in which they worshiped until the construction of their modern and commodious edifice on the same site in 1885 – ’86. The congregation finally organized as the Overton St. Paul Reformed church. Their new building was commenced in 1885 and finally completed in 1888. The first exercises held in the new church were those of Children’s Day, Sunday, August 15, 1886 – before the building had windows or the walls plastered. These were the first Children’s Day exercises held by this denomination in Overton. Rev. Mr. Mutchler made a short address on the occasion. The bell for the church was largely the contribution of Miss Mary A. Hottenstein, and was rung for the first time January 1, 1887. Services have been held regularly every Sunday for many years. Great interest has always been taken in the Sabbath school. Overton and Dushore are served from the same charge.

The Roman Catholics built a church edifice (St Patrick’s) in 1847, on the place of Edward McGovern, where they worshiped until 1888. This building stood between the public road and cemetery and since has been taken down. In 1854 a second church (St Philip’s and James’) was erected on Sugar Ridge. This building was torn down in 1883, and a neat and more spacious edifice erected nearly on the same site. Work on the large and handsome church in Overton village was begun in 1886 and the building completed in 1887. The church was dedicated as St. Francis Xavier, October 23, 1888 by Bishop O’Hara, assisted by Fathers Kaier, Martin and Enright. The bell for the church was presented by Miss Anna McGovern, and was rung for the first time February 13, 1889.

For many years Overton and Dushore constituted the parish, which was in charge of Father Kaier. Since the establishment of the Church of St. Francis Xavier, Overton has been a separate parish with a resident priest, serving the congregations at Sugar Ridge and Overton. The local priests have been: James A Martin, from October, 1888, to October, 1894; Thomas M. Hanley, from October, 1894, to June 1896; John J. Loughran, from June, 1896, to October 1896; Henry P. Burk, from October 1896, to February, 1898; Daniel H. Green, from February 1898, until his death, July 9, 1903; George J. Dixon, from July, 1903, to January, 1910; J. F. Morrison, from January 4, 1910, in charge. St. Francis Xavier has the largest congregation of any church in Overton. Faithful attention is given to the prosperous Sabbath schools of both churches.

Other Denominations have conducted services in the town from time to time, but never succeeded in gaining a permanent foothold. Back in the 30’s Mormon preachers came in from Canton and exhorted to the people. They, however, found no followers, and some of the young men of the neighborhood made it so embarrassing for them that they soon ceased their visits.


The first attempt made for a grist-mill was that of Daniel Heverly (1st), near the site of afterwards Sherman’s saw-mill. The depression of money matters, caused by the War of 1812, compelled Mr. Heverly to abandon the enterprise before its completion. The first saw-mill was built on Black Creek by Daniel Heverly (2nd) in 1830. Daniel Lyon of Monroe was the mill-wright. This mill stood about 20 rods from the public road on land now owned by J. L. Shaffer. Christian Heverly purchased this property of his brother and sold it to Charles Dieffenbaugh. Dieffenbaugh traded with McCann and James Heverly purchased an interest with him. About 1844 the mill was torn down and rebuilt. It was destroyed by fire in 1847.

The second saw-mill was erected on Black Creek by Edward McGovern in 1842. In 1851-’52 Daniel Heverly (2nd) built a saw-mill below the falls on the run back of G. L. Rinebold’s residence. An iron wheel was put in and the mill supplied with water from a double dam. The water supply proved inadequate, and the mill could only be operated for short intervals. Mr. Heverly sold to his son, Daniel, and William Waltman, who took the water-wheel and gearing, which was used in the construction (1853) of another mill on Black Creek. Henry Sherman entered the partnership and subsequently became the sole owner of this mill.

The first to carry on lumbering operations extensively were John F. Means and M. C. Mercur, who had large mills in the northern part of the town. Then followed Kipp and Kizer, who had purchased 2,000 acres of timber land in Deep Hollow. They put up a large mill and began operations in April, 1882. Subsequently a second mill was erected, and both kept in operation several years before the tract was cleared. A settlement and improvement of lands followed the closing up of the lumbering business here. Scott & Miner, beginning in 1881, also for some years carried on an extensive lumbering business at the Foot-of-Plane. Other more important lumbermen have been Thayer & Barden, and E. E. Quinlan.


"Before goods were brought to the settlement, trading was done, generally, at Towanda or Monroeton; sometimes, however, the settlers would go to Sam Jackson’s at Dushore. Money was very scarce and the people had but few products to exchange for goods. Maple sugar and pine shingles were their main dependence, but an occasional roll of butter or cake of bees-wax helped very much in procuring immediate necessities."

The First Store in the township was opened in the winter of 1855 by Daniel Heverly (3rd), who brought in a small stock of groceries and dry goods from Elmira on a sleigh and offered them for sale at his house (the same which he now occupies). He subsequently enlarged his stock and continued in the mercantile business about six years.

William Waltman opened the second store in 1856, a couple of rods south of the present residence of Mrs. Jacob Heverly. The store and contents were destroyed by fire in April, 1858. Orlando Heverly erected a building in Overton village, and put in a stock of goods in 1858. Henry Heichemer bought out the concern in the spring of 1 859, and continued business in the same building until 1865, when he sold out to his sons, Frederick and Martin, and son-in-law, Joseph Mosbacher. Frederick finally became the sole owner of the business and erected a neat and commodious building on the site of the old store in 1878. He sold to E. Francke & son in 1898. The store and contents were destroyed by fire in April, 1900; the store was rebuilt and occupied in October of the same year. F. Osthaus & Co. put up a building and began mercantiling at Overton in 1867. The firm was changed to F. Osthaus & Son, and again to F. Osthaus & Co. In 1901 a building suitable for their large trade was erected on the site of the old store.

The first millinery goods were brought to the township in the spring of 1865 by Miss Mary Hottenstein and offered for sale at her own house. She continued in business 27 years.


"One person was generally another’s doctor;" but in extreme cases a physician was necessary. When Jacob Heverly, who died in 1826, was sick, his brother Daniel was required to go to Muncy, a distance of 35 miles, for a physician, and ruined a young horse in making the trip by overheating him. He left the settlement after noon and reached Muncy before sundown. The physician came on the next morning, but could be of no avail, as death soon after claimed its victim.

Doctors Huston and Weston were frequently called from Towanda, and later Dr. Ingham from Monroeton. The first regular physician was Dr. Galliger [sic], who lived in Cherry, Sullivan county. He was something of the quack style of doctor, but used drugs for medicines. The first physician to locate in the town was George Ripking in 1854. He was a scholarly man and a regular graduate in medicine. He was a native of Germany. In 1859 he left the township, but came back again after the Civil War, in which he served as a surgeon. He remained some years, then because of the infirmities of age went to the Soldiers’ Home, where he died. Dr. Ira R. Park became the next resident physician in 1870 and occupied the field for 26 years.


It was nearly half a century after the settlement of the town before there was a licensed hotel in Overton. However, the weary traveler was always welcomed and given the best entertainment the pioneer home afforded. The late Lewis Zaner relates that when he was a boy, at the close of the War of 1812, he accompanied General Wadsworth on horseback from Berwick to Newtown (Elmira). They came over the old turnpike by the way of the Heverly settlement, and tarried one night at the home of Daniel Heverly.

The First Hotel was kept by Daniel Heverly (3rd). He was licensed to keep a tavern in May, 1857, and continued so to do for about three years. He kept the tavern in connection with his store. The first hotel building was erected in Overton village in 1868 by Peter Sherman, who took out a license in May of the following year. He continued to run the "Overton House" about four years, when it passed into other hands. In the spring of 1874 the building was destroyed by fire and never rebuilt. The second hotel was erected in 1877 by James J. Hannon, who was licensed to keep a public house in May, 1878, and has ever since kept his doors open for the entertainment of the public.


Political Matters

From the time of the first settlement, the citizens of Overton have generally taken an active interest in the great political questions and matters of local government. The pioneers appreciated the right of suffrage and exercised it though it meant a sacrifice of time, and long and tiresome journeys. In 1823 we find among those who attended the fall election in Asylum (election place now Terrytown), John Heverly and Daniel Heverly, Jr., who had traveled a distance of 18 miles through the wilderness to cast their votes. After the formation of Albany the distance to the election place was reduced to about five miles.

The First Election in Overton was held March 18, 1853, at the house of William Waltman, for the purpose of electing township officers. The Court appointed Jacob Heverly judge of this "special election," of which he says: "The day following election I delivered the returns at the county-seat, making the trip on foot and returned the same day." The first officers of the township chosen at said election, were:

Judge of Election
John Molyneux

Inspectors of Election
Reuben Rinebold, Isaac Frear

Justice of the Peace
Jacob Hottenstein

James Molyneux, Thomas McGovern, William Luce.

School Directors
Thomas McGovern, John Molyneux, Abner Mitchell, Jacob Streevy, James Heverly

Gideon S. Boyles

Edward McGovern

George W. Hottenstein

Town Clerk
William Waltman

Daniel O’Neill, John Flynn, Abner Mitchell.

The first regular election was held October 11, 1853. The first election place was the house of William Waltman (now farm of Russell Heverly). By vote at a special election, held March 14, 1857, the election place was changed to school house No. 2. Twenty-nine years later the citizens again voted to change the place of holding elections from school house No. 2 to the town house in Overton village, where the voting has been done since November, 1887.
On local political matters Overton has always been one of the most liberal towns in the county. However, on state and national issues, with but one exception, the majority of her vote has been cast for Democratic candidates. The following vote for President will show the strength of the different political parties in the town since 1856:

Vote for President.

John C. Fremont, Republican
James Buchanan, Democrat
Stephen A. Douglas, Democrat
Abraham Lincoln, Republican
George B. McClellan, Democrat
Abraham Lincoln, Republican
Horatio Seymour, Democrat
Ulysses S. Grant, Republican
Horace Greeley, Liberal Republican & Democrat
Ulysses S. Grant, Republican
Samuel J. Tilden, Democrat
Rutherford B. Hayes, Republican
Winfield S. Hancock, Democrat
James A. Garfield, Republican
James B. Weaver, Greenback
Grover Cleveland, Democrat
James A. Garfield, Republican
Grover Cleveland, Democrat
Benjamin Harrison, Republican
Grover Cleveland, Democrat
Benjamin Harrison, Republican
William J. Bryan, Democrat
William McKinley, Republican
John M. Palmer, National Democrat
William J. Bryan, Democrat
William McKinley, Republican
Alton B. Parker, Democrat
Theodore Roosevelt, Republican
Silas C. Swallow, Prohibition
William J. Bryan, Democrat
William H. Taft, Republican

Vote for Governor

William Bigler, Democrat
James Pollock, Whig & Know-Nothing
William F. Packer, Democrat
David Wilmot, Republican
Henry D. Foster, Democrat
Andrew G. Curtin, Republican
George W. Woodward, Democrat
Andrew G. Curtin, Republican
Henry Clymer, Democrat
John W. Geary, Republican
Asa Packer, Democrat
John W. Geary, Republican
Charles R. Buckalew, Democrat
John F. Hartranft, Republican
Cyrus L. Pershing, Democrat
John F. Hartranft, Republican
Andrew H. Dill, Democrat
Henry M. Hoyt, Republican
Samuel R. Mason, Greenback
Robert E. Pattison, Democrat
James A. Beaver, Republican
John Stewart, Independent
Chauncey F. Black, Democrat
James A. Beaver, Republican
Robert E. Pattison, Democrat
George W. Delamater, Republican
George A. Jenks, Democrat
William A. Stone, Republican
Silas C. Swallow, Prohibition
Robert E. Pattison, Democrat
Samuel W. Pennepacker, Republican
Silas C. Swallow, Prohibition
Lewis Emery, Independendent & Democrat
Edwin S. Stuart, Republican

Since the organization of Overton but one person has been elected to county office from the town, being Clement F. Heverly, who was chosen county auditor in 1884, and probably the youngest official ever elected in the county.

The following are the officers of Overton, 1910:

Judge of Election
John Dorsey

Inspectors of Election
William Bird, John Shahan.

School Directors
John Dorsey, Michael J. Frawley
Frank Leahy, John O’Connell, Addison L. Rinebold, Clinton Streby.

Justices of the Peace
William Bird, A. J. Bird.

Gilbert L. Rinebold

Daniel J. Frawley, William Streby, Clinton Streby

George E. Hottenstein, Anthony J. Mullen, Fred Sherman.

Herbert E. Hausknecht

Collector of Taxes
Isaac Bailey

Benjamin J. Hausknecht.

Mail Matters.

The first post office was established as "Heverlyville" in 1851, and was kept at the house of James Heverly. Edward McGovern was postmaster, but gave the emoluments of the office to Mr. Heverly for keeping it for him. Before the establishment of this office the people were required to go to Wilcox’s for their mail. Mail was first carried on horseback, and came from the South – Muncy. In 1837, while yet in his teens, Edward Rinebold was hired to carry the mail from Muncy to Tunkhannock by the way of Towanda. The trips were made on horseback, requiring three days from Towanda to Muncy and return, and two days from Towanda to Tunkhannock. Great patience and courage was required, as no one accompanied him, and the greater part of his journey was over mountains through a great forest. He continued these arduous duties, beset with many dangers, for a year. In 1856 the name of the office was changed to Overton and George W. Hottenstein was postmaster. For half a century the people in a wide territory were served from this office. Most of the Overton district, since 1901, have had a daily mail from New Albany. By stage line from Hillsgrove to New Albany, however, there has been a daily service many years. The postmasters for Overton have been as follows:

Edward McGovern
George Hottenstein
Jacob Hottenstein
Isaac Bleiler
James Heverly
Charles Heichemer
John C. Hottenstein
Frederick Heichemer
Alex. C. Haverly
Frederick Heichemer
Ira R. Park
Fred F. Chase
Frederick Heichemer
Edward C. Musselman
Joseph J. Francke

Notable Events and Shocking Occurrences.

The largest crowd ever assembled in Overton was the occasion of the Catholic picnic, August 14, 1886. Many hundred people were present from a large section of country. A big dinner was served, and dancing and other amusements engaged in. There were contests over various articles, the gold watch being won by Miss Mayme Hannon.

The most memorable funeral in Overton was that of Mrs. Edward McGovern on April 7, 1888. Obsequies in charge of Rev. Father Kaier were held from the Church of St. Patrick. Rev. Father Kelly of Towanda delivered the sermon, paying a high tribute to the beautiful Christian character of the deceased. Others assisting in the services were Father Costello of Athens and Father Welsh of Dushore. Bishop Thomas McGovern, son of the deceased, was present, arrayed in robes of purple and bowed with the priests in prayer.

On June 30, 1910, Mr. and Mrs. Daniel Heverly, surrounded by children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren relatives and friends, celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary. They are the first Overton couple ever to reach three score years of married life. Within the town, Mr. Heverly enjoys the distinction of being Overton’s oldest living son, and Mrs. Heverly Overton’s oldest living daughter.

On November 7, 1866, while Alice, the seven-year-old daughter of Mr. and Mrs. John C. Hottenstein, was assisting her mother in making apple-butter, her clothing caught fire, and before the flames could be smothered had received burns from which she died in great agony.

One night in January, 1874, the barn of Henry Sherman was destroyed by fire, together with its contents of hay and grain, a number of horses, cows, sheep and poultry perishing in the flames. The fire was believed to have been the work of an incendiary, and nearly ruined Mr. Sherman as he had no insurance on any of his property. Kind neighbors came to his relief, assisting him financially and otherwise.

On August 1st, 1887, while Artemus W. Fawcett was sitting in a wagon in his horse-barn watching a thunder shower, a bolt of lightning descended through the building, striking Mr. Fawcett and killing him instantly. His little son and two Frawley boys on the floor near him escaped uninjured. The building was set on fire and burned.

On July 9, 1889, while Thomas Waltman, an esteemed resident of the town, was gumming a saw at his mill, the emery wheel bursted and one of the fragments striking him in the forehead fractured his skull. He died some hours afterwards from his injuries. On the 5th of the same month, Michael Mullany, who had moved from the town to Ulster, fell from a cherry tree, meeting instant death.

On the morning of January 8, 1892, Albert Molyneux went to a pool of water near his house and deliberately drowned himself. The cause of his rash act remains a mystery.

On November 3, 1903, Patrick McHale, aged 86 years, while fighting forest fires near his home, being overcome by smoke and heat and his clothing taking fire, was burned to death. His charred remains were found several hours afterwards.

Novel Characters.

The first colored man and only one, who ever made Overton his permanent home, was Harry Carpenter, who came to the township from Susquehanna county in 1854. Harry, however, was a native of Schoharie, N.Y., where his early life was spent. He was a genius in some respects and different from most men of his race. Without education, he acquired a knowledge of Nature’s plants, disease symptoms of animals, and became quite successful as a horse and cattle doctor. He was an all-around "handy man," liked to be put in charge of a job and prided himself in its careful execution. His interesting narrations were a little long drawn, but his apt and witty sayings contained more truth than fiction. Harry believed in the salvation of man, but loved his cups. His religious ardor was greatest after he had imbibed a half pint of working spirits, when he gave himself up in prayer, song and exultation. In his younger days he was remarkably active and a dangerous man to impose upon. He was seldom out-done in line of duty. His color always made him an interesting character for the study of the younger generations, and his good qualities outnumbered his short-comings. We shall never forget Harry, "the first black man." Peace to his ashes. Finally he became decrepit, and died a town charge in April, 1881, aged about 80 years.

Aaron Shotts came to the township in 1857, and bought a little farm at the top of the hill next the Albany line. He was a hard worker and an expert shingle maker. But poor Aaron was always in trouble, real and imaginary. Though a man in years, he had the weakness of a child and was wont to give way in tears. He was so easily irritated that he was made the butt of amusement by the mischievous boys of the neighborhood. He, however, was a man of no evil propensities. In 1878 he sold out and returned to Huntington, Pa., where he had formerly lived.

"Big Nose Jim" was the name by which James Fleming, one of the later settlers of the Ridge, was known. The prominence of Mr. Fleming’s nose, together with the fact that he was fluent in the use of the mother tongue, made him as much of a curiosity for the boys as was "Black Harry." So abnormal was his organ of smelling that it was really a proboscis, or three times the size of an ordinary nose. This mark of nature was his misfortune and embarrassment, for he was an industrious and upright citizen.

Occurrences of Nature.

Among the occurrences of nature, remembered and talked about, from the oldest to the present inhabitants, are the following:
1816 – "The year without a summer," for in every month there was a killing frost. The destruction of crops was so general that a famine almost resulted. Early settlers referred to this unfruitful year as "eighteen hundred and starve to death."
1817 – "Winter remarkable for a great fall of snow."
1821 – On April 18 there were two feet of snow a fter a three days’ snow storm.
1827 –’28 – One of the mildest winters ever known.
1833 – A grand celestial phenomenon or meteoric shower was exhibited in the heavens on the morning of November 13, 1833. This beautiful and wonderful exhibition of "falling stars" was seen and is remembered by some of the oldest inhabitants.
1835 – In May (about 20th) snow fell to the depth of 15 inches.
1835-’36 – Winter remarkable for a great fall of snow and intense cold weather. In January many cattle and other animals perished. There was still good sleighing on the 23rd of March.
1836 – On the 5th of October snow fell to the depth of nearly two feet. Fruit had not been gathered and buckwheat was still in the field, some not yet cut. Fruit trees were broken down, and the roads through the forests blockaded with fallen limbs. On the 6th the sun shone brightly and the snow soon disappeared.
1839 – On the 25th of May snow began falling, continuing during the night until it was over a foot deep. The spring had been early and much farming done. Corn was up. The snow soon melted and passed away.
1842 – On October 7th and 9th snow fell to the depth of 15 inches.
1842-’43 – The winter was severe and bitter cold, with snow three feet deep all winter. The supply of hay and straw became exhausted and many cattle perished. In the fall myriads of black squirrels migrated through the wilderness.
1844 – On the 29th of September a heavy snow fell. On the Barclay mountains it lay 28 inches deep.
1853 – A beautiful fall until the 24th of October, when snow fell to the depth of more than a foot.
1854 – The big April snow storm, commencing on Good Friday, April 14, continued four days. After melting as it came, at the conclusion of the storm the snow was still three feet deep in the woods.
1857 – On April 19 and 20, snow fell to a depth, varying from two to three feet. There were other notable April snow storms in 1859, 1873,1894.
1859 – Notable as the cold summer. There is said to have been a frost every month in the year. On the 4th of July persons wore overcoats at the celebrations.
1865 – ’66 - An open winter with little snow, and not enough at any time to make sleighing.
1867 – ’68 – On the 5th of December there was a heavy fall of snow which continued on the ground, making continuous good sleighing until the middle of April.
1875 – ’76 – Warm winter with very little snow. Plowing was done in January and February, and many pieces of oats were sown by the middle of March. The summer of 1876 was warm and the year an exceedingly fruitful one.
1876 –1906 – Each had its notable New Year’s day. On both occasions on that day it was so warm that people sat out of doors on their porches, and men went about without coats with comfort.
1884 – ’85 – A cold winter. From the 13th to 24th of March, thermometers registered anywhere from 6 to 22 degrees below zero.
1885 – One of the greatest December snow storms ever known. Snow commenced falling on the 23rd and continued three days. In the Deep Hollow and other places the snow was from four to five feet deep.
1888 – On the 13th of March occurred the Great Blizzard, which had its base on the Pacific coast, and gathered intensity as it proceeded eastward across the Rockies to the great lakes and on to the Atlantic coast. The winter of 1887 –‘ 88 went upon record as one of the most terrible in the country’s history. Storm after storm swept over mountains and plains. Snow driven with relentless fury blinded and overwhelmed that fauna kingdom, and the severity of the temperature, which a number of times reached from 30 to 40 degrees below zero, wrought havoc with man and beast throughout the entire country. There was untold want and suffering.
1901 – The greatest December flood and the most destructive in the history of the county occurred December 14th. On Saturday afternoon the rain began falling in torrents, continuing almost incessantly for six hours. The waters quickly gathered, filling and overflowing every small channel, and in a rapid rush bounded on to the larger streams. Creeks became raging torrents, bankful and overflowing, the waters sweeping everything before them. Five persons were drowned and property, public and private, destroyed and damaged in the county to the extent of a million dollars. Overton was one of the townships suffering the greatest loss.
1904 – The coldest weather ever known in this section was in January, 1904. There were two waves. One on the 3rd, 4th and 5th of January, and the other on the 18th and 19th. Both extended over the greater part of the United States. On the 5th local thermometers in the county registered from 25 to 40 degrees below zero.
1904 – ’05 – An exceedingly cold winter with much snow.
1908 – ’09 – One of the mildest winters ever known. The severe days did not exceed half a dozen, and the ground in the valleys was so slightly frozen that ploughing could have been done every day during the winter.

Not only have there been a number of remarkable snow storms in April and May, but they have sometimes occurred in June. On June 5, 1832, four inches of snow fell all over Eastern Pennsylvania. There was a severe frost on June 5, 1859, and on June 6, 1878, there was frost with ice, and the same condition, May 26, 1879, and June 3, 1880.


Love of Country

Nowhere do we find a more patriotic people than those who have made Overton their home. From the time of the first settlement to the present the same patriotic spirit has prevailed. During the War of 1812 there were but two persons in Overton subject to military enrollment. One of these was drafted, and the other enlisted and served through the "Second Struggle for Independence." In the war of the Rebellion one-eighth of the entire population of the town fought for the preservation of the Union, suffering a percentage of loss exceeded only by two other townships in the county. When war was declared against Spain in 1898, there was no abatement of patriotic ardor and Overton outdid every other township in the proportion of her young men furnishing for the crisis.

Boys In Blue.

In the Great Rebellion, or Civil War, 1861 – ’65, Overton furnished the following soldiers:

Pennsylvania Volunteers.

Jacob Sherman, sergeant, Company G, 28th; mustered in July 11, 1861; promoted from private to corporal and sergeant; discharged July 18, 1895, veteran.

Levi. B. Camp, private; Company F, 34th, (5th Reserves); mustered in June 21, 1861; died July 18, ‘62 at Annapolis, Md. of wounds received at White Oak Swamp, June 30, ’62.

Nelson Sherman, private; Company I, 35th, (6th Reserves); mustered in April 22, 1861’ wounded at Bull Run, Antietam, Fredericksburg and Wilderness; discharged June 11, ’64.

Lemuel S. Fawcett, private, Company D, 43rd. (1st Artillery); mustered in September 3, 1864; discharged June 21, ’65; also private, Co. G. 26th Militia, June 19 – July 30, ‘63

Reuben T. Camp, private, Company B. 58th; mustered in September 16, 1861; transferred to Battery L, 4th U. S. Artillery.

Daniel Heverly, Jr., private, Company F, 61st; mustered in September 27, 1864; discharged June 20, ’65.

John H. Epley, Private, Company B, 80th (7th Cavalry); mustered in February 25, 1864; discharged August 23, ’65.

Frederick Heichemer, private, Company B, 80th (7th Cavalry); mustered in February 25, 1864; discharged August 23, ’65; also private, Company A, 35th Militia, July 2 – August 7, ’63. Died June 29, 1898, in his 54th year.

Edwin U. Heverly, private, Company B, 80th (7th Cavalry); mustered in February 25, 1864; captured October 1, ’64, at Carter’s Creek, Tenn., and prisoner at Cahawba and Selma; paroled March 15, ’65. Died February 19, 1886, at Towanda, Pa. aged 39 years.

Loren H. Beagle, private, Company K, 97th; mustered in September 28, ’64; wounded January 15, ’65, at Fort Fisher, N. C.; discharged June 28, ’65.

Lester Camp, private, Company K, 97th; mustered in September 18, ’64; discharged June 28, ’65; also private, Company D, 171st, October 28, ’62 – August 8, ’63.

Eli Conklin, corporal, Company C, 107th; mustered in February 25, 1862; wounded August 19, ’64, in head and shoulder at Weldon Railroad and captured; prisoner 9 months at Libby, Belle Isle and Salisbury; discharged June 27, ’65; veteran. Died December 6, 1902, aged 65 years.

Brooks Epley, corporal, Company C, 107th; mustered in February 25, 1862; transferred July 1, ’63, to Vet. Res. Corps; discharged at close of war. Died July 21, 1904, aged 84 years.

Henry Heverly, private, Company C, 107th; mustered in March 7, 1862; died April 22, ’63, at Overton, aged 32 years.

Alfred Streevy, sergeant, Company C. 107th; mustered in January 25, 1862; wounded severely in leg, July 1, ’63, at Gettysburg; transferred February 16, ’64, to Vet. Res. Corps; discharged at close of war, Died May 15, 1892, aged 55 years.

William Streevy, private, Company C, 107th; mustered in February 25, 1862; missing, September 23, ’62.

Orange M. Chase, sergeant, Company G. 107th; mustered in February 11, 1862; transferred July 1, ’63, to Vet. Res. Corps; discharged at close of war. Died February 17, 1892, aged 65 years.

Isaiah Waltman, private, Company f, 112th (2nd Artillery); mustered in December 27, 1861; discharged December 27, ’64.

Edward J. Rinebold, private, Company C, 141st; mustered in August 19, 1862; captured at Chancellorsville and paroled; died February 27, ’64, while on furlough at Overton, of diphtheria, aged 18 years.

Lewis Rinebold, private, Company C, 141st; mustered in August 19, 1862; wounded at Chancellorsville, for which discharged September 4, ’63.

Henry E. Streevy, private, Company C, 141st; mustered in August 19, 1862; killed May 3, ’63, at Chancellorsville, aged 19 years.

Marion Waltman, private, Company M. 152nd (3rd Artillery); mustered in February 23, 1863; discharged November 9, ’65.

Henry J. Camp, private, Company D, 162nd (17th Cavalry); mustered in October 28, 1862; died June 25, ’63, at Washington, D. C. – buried in Military Asylum cemetery.

George W. Hottenstein, private, Company I, 163rd (18th Cavalry); mustered in October 30, 1862; captured at Brandy Station and exchanged; captured May 5, ’64, at Mine Run, Va. And died July 18, ’64, in Andersonville prison – grave 1,483.

Solomon Hottenstein, corporal, Company I, 163rd (18th Cavalry); mustered in October 30, 1862; captured May 5, ’64 at Mine Run, Va., and died Nov. 3 ’64, in Florence prison, S. C.

Edward Musselman, 1st sergeant, Company I, 163rd (18th Cavalry); mustered in October 30, 1862; wounded and captured October 11, ’63, at Brandy Station, but exchanged; discharged October 11, ’65.

James Rinebold, private, Company I, 163rd (18th Cavalry); mustered in October 10, 1862; captured at Brandy Station and exchanged; captured May 5, ’64, at Mine Run, Va. And died June 10, ’64, in Andersonville prison – grave 907.

Henry Sherman, private, Company I, 163rd (18th Cavalry); mustered in October 30, 1862; discharged s. c. - ; also private, Company C, 111th N. Y. Inf., September 13, ’64 – June 4, ’65.

John Streevy, corporal, Company I, 163rd (18th Cavalry); mustered in October 30, 1862; discharged December 14, ’65.

Edward McCann, private, Company L. 163rd (18th Cavalry); mustered in April 6, 1864; wounded June 15, ’64, at White Oak Swamp, Va.; discharged June 9, ’65.

Watson Molyneux, private, Company L., 163rd (18th Cavalry); mustered in March 24, 1864; captured June 10, 1864, at Cold Harbor, Va., and prisoner at Andersonville 6 months; discharged October 31, ’65.

Charles Streevy, corporal Company L, 163rd (18th Cavalry); mustered in February 26, 1864; promoted from private; discharged October 31, ’65.

J. Andrew Wilt, bugler; Company L. 163rd (18th Cavalry); mustered in March 24, ’64; promoted from private; discharged October 31, ’65; also private, Company A. 35th Militia, July 2 – August 7, ’63.

John C. Hottenstein, corporal, Company D, 171st; mustered in October 28, 1862; discharged August 8, ’63.

Morris M. Levering, private, Company I, 207th; mustered in September, 1864.

Mandes Hottenstein – unknown Pennsylvania regiment.

Albert Molyneux, private, Company A, 35th Militia, July 2 – August 7, 1863.

New York Regiments.

John Obourn, private, Company F, 19th Cavalry (1st Dragoons); mustered in December 14, 1863; transferred September 20, ’64, to Vet. Res. Corps; discharged July 17, ’65.

Oliver Delanson Heverly, private, Company I, 179th; mustered in August, 1864; discharged June 8, ’65.

Richard H. Richards, age 43, private, Company K, 188th; mustered in September 25, 1864; wounded at Five Forks, Va.; discharged May 31,’65.

Other Regiments.

James Mullen – killed at the Wilderness, May, 1864.

John O’Neill – Enlisted in the 6th U. S. Infantry about 1860, from which discharged; entered the volunteer service and killed during the war.

Philip O’Neill – enlisted in the U. S. Marine Corps. July 16, 1860; discharged as a corporal, August 16, ’64; re-enlisted October 20, ’64; promoted to orderly; discharged October 20, ’68; served on ships, Susquehanna, Vermont and Brooklyn; previous service from August 20, 1854 to August 30, ’59, in Company M, 2nd U. S. Artillery. Died June 6, 1899, at Wilkes-Barre, Pa., aged 66 years.

William P. O’Neill - Enlisted in the U. S. Marine Corps, 1860; served on ships, Susquehanna, Vermont and Brooklyn; promoted to master – at – arms; discharged 1866.

Curtis R. Haverly, captain, Company B. 42nd Missouri Vol., 1864 – ’65; also member of Company K, 10th Missouri Vol., 1861 – ’64; severely wounded in arm at Big Black River, Miss. Died December 1, 1905, at Macon City, Mo., aged 75 years.

The Overton boys were among the bravest and best that wore the blue. Of their number ten were wounded, three killed in battle, one died of wounds, three died in rebel prisons and three died of disease. They served on both land and sea, and fought with McClellan, Burnside, Hooker, Meade and Grant in the Army of the Potomac; with Sheridan, Kilpatrick and Custer in the cavalry; with Grant in the southwest; and with Thomas and Sherman in the southeast and from "Atlanta to the sea."

Overton responded at the first call for volunteers, and Nelson Sherman, yet living, has the distinction of being the first man to enlist from the township. Jacob Hottenstein furnished four sons – George, John, Mandes and Solomon; Henry Sherman, four sons – Daniel (in western army), Henry, Jacob and Nelson; John Streevy, four sons – Alfred, Henry, William and Charles; Daniel O’Neill, three sons – John, Philip and William; Jonathan Camp, three sons – Henry, Levi and Reuben; while Brooks Epley sent his son, John, and went himself.

Overton also has the distinction of having furnished the youngest enlisted soldier from the county, being J. Andrew Wilt, who was mustered into service at the age of 14 years, 9 months and 4 days. Other boy soldiers, whose ages ranged from 15 to 19 years, were Charles Streevy, Edwin U. Heverly, John Epley, Frederick Heichemer, Edward McCann , Watson Molyneux, James Mullen, Edward J. Rinebold, Morris Levering and Albert Molyneux.

One of the most remarkable men to enter the service was Alfred Streevy. He was not only a powerful man but was quick as a cat, and fond of wrestling, running and jumping. In all these feats he had earned a wide reputation before going to the war. The dullness of camp life afforded him ample opportunity to engage in his favorite sports. He ran foot races with the boys, and engaged in lifting, running and jumping contests. He could not only outdo any man in his company, but was the best man in the regiment. He frequently received a challenge from some other regiment in the brigade, and in every instance came out the champion in the contest. It was said of him that he could out lift, outrun, out jump or throw any man in the regiment and never met his match in the corps.

Jacob Sherman served four years and one month. He participated in all the battles and engagements of his regiment, never was wounded and was with his company every day, save six, when he was in the hospital. He was in the great battles of Antietam, Chancellorsville, Gettysburg, Chattanooga, Lookout Mountain, Ringgold, Peach Tree Creek and numerous smaller engagements. Certainly a remarkable record, and the longest term of service of any man from Overton.

James Rinebold was a noble character, whose golden deed should ever live in the remembrance of his kindred and friends. He had a brother with a family of several small children, who was drafted into the service. James, who was a single man, told his brother to remain and care for his family, and he would take his place in the army. He, accordingly, donned the blue, went to the front, was captured by the enemy and died of starvation in Andersonville prison. What can be more noble than to sacrifice one’s life for a brother and his country?

The only surviving (1910) veterans of the foregoing, residing in the town, are Daniel Heverly, John C. Hottenstein, Lewis Rinebold, and Nelson Sherman. Other veterans are: Isaac Bailey (34th N. Y. Inf. And 16th N. Y. Heavy Artillery), Benjamin J. Hausknecht (Co. E, 210th P. V. and Co. D, 39th Pa. Militia), and Christopher F. Platt (Co. K, 50th P. V.), who enlisted from other localities and moved to Overton since the war.

In the Spanish – American war and Philippino difficulties, the following young men enlisted from Overton: Harry Learn, Joseph Sherman, Richard Sherman, Frank Snell, Alfred Spink, Allen Streevy, Benjamin Streevy and Walter Streevy. Benjamin Streevy served in the regimental band of "Hood’s Invincibles" during the Cuban campaign. George Sherman served an enlistment in the U. S. Cavalry.

Some Firsts and Other Things.

The first child born in Overton was John, son of Frederick Kissell, born in 1818, although Amasa, son of John Heverly, born April 11, 1817, was in fact Overton’s first baby, his mother being only temporarily out of the township when he came into the world.

The first death in the township was that of Mrs. Christian Heverly, July, 1821.

The first burial in the township – Frederick Kissell, spring of 1823.

The first marriage in the neighborhood was in the summer of 1828 at the house of Henry Sherman, Esquire Dyer Ormsby officiating. The happy pair were Daniel Kaufman and Miss Susan, daughter of Leonard Streevy. Kaufman was a half brother of Mr. Sherman and was living with him at the time.

The first funeral sermon preached in Overton was that of Jacob Heverly in 1826. The neighbors were congregated in a little grove above his house, where they listened to Rev. Elisha Cole of Monroe.

The first regular Sabbath school was organized at the school house in 1845 by Jacob Hottenstein. However, before that time Mr. Hottenstein had formed classes at private houses and taught them for a short period. Amasa Heverly says: "Mr. Hottenstein taught a Sabbath school at our house a few times, and after the erection of our new barn held it there. This was perhaps in about 1835."

The first secret society, The Independent Order of Good Templars, was organized in the summer of 1854. The meetings of the society were held at the house of Daniel Heverly (3rd) and had a membership of over forty.

The first horses were brought to the township by Daniel Heverly (1st) when he came in. He also had the first wagons.

The first orchard was set out by Daniel Heverly (1st), the trees being brought from Northrup Hollow. His son planted seeds and had a nursery later.

The first framed barn that of Christian Heverly, 1832. The oldest barn standing that of Fred Haverly, erected 1835.

The first framed house that of Christian Heverly, 1836. The oldest house standing that of Mahlon Chase, erected 1838. The next, the old part (hewed logs) of Daniel Heverly residence, 1839.

Christian Heverly had the first stove. It was subsequently purchased and used in the old school house.

Daniel Heverly (1st) had the first clock.

Henry Heverly had the first cook stove in the vicinity.

Jacob Heverly had the first mowing machine, the "Wood."

The first raised bridge across Black Creek was that put up by George Hunsinger and John Molyneux in 1843. It was below the McCann mill dam, near the site of the present road bridge.

A noted land-mark and place of rendezvous on the huckleberry mountain was the "Three Brothers" – three large hemlock trees, called in memory of Absalom Carr, James Donley and John Miller, half brothers and hunters. Carr is the man who discovered coal on Barclay mountain. He died on Hatch Hill.

In 1814 Daniel Heverly was assessed in Towanda township with 20 acres of improved land, 80 unimproved, 2 oxen, 1 horse and 3 cows; valuation $348; tax $2.61. John Heverly, single freeman, 3 acres improved and other land, valuation $124; tax 94 cents.

In the days of the old Militia, trainings were sometimes held in Overton. At a cavalry, or horse training on Christian Heverly’s flats in 1841, one man was badly injured.

Mortuary Records.

The following record of deaths of Overton pioneers and their families is taken from the headstones marking their final resting places. Unmarked graves, except where records have been procurable, are not included in the lists.

Pioneer Cemetery.


Spring, 1823
Frederick Kissell (War 1812)
35 about

Oct. 19, 1824
George, son C. & M. Heverly

Summer, 1826
Jacob Heverly

June 1, 1827
Elizabeth, wife Leonard Streevy
42 about

Jan. 20, 1831
Catharine, wife Daniel Heverly

Catharine, wife Henry Sherman
32 about

Mrs. Jacob Sherman
60 about

Oct. 20, 1842
Mary, wife Jacob Heverly
37 yrs 1 mo 8 days

Mar. 29, 1844
Daniel Heverly

April 10, 1844
Anthony, son C. & M. Heverly
6 yrs 2 mos 5 ds

July 5, 1844
Sevellon, son C. & M. Heverly

Mrs. Peter Sherman
25 about

March 2, 1853
Larry Dunmore (War 1812)
81 yrs 9 mos 7 ds

March 2, 1854
Irene, wife Larry Dunmore
75 yrs 9 mos 24 ds

June 16, 1854
Christian Ruth

Dec. 16, 1885
Mary, wife John Streevy
42 yrs 1 mo 28 ds

July 8, 1868
Jane R., wife Jacob Heverly
53 yrs 29 ds

May 14, 1878
Henry Sherman
77 yrs 19 ds

Dec. 31, 1881
Jacob Streevy
67 yrs 9 mos 4 ds

April 2, 1886
Jacob Heverly
81 yrs 1 mo 26 ds

May 15, 1892
Alfred Streevy (Civil War)
55 yrs 1 mo 3 ds

Oct. 3, 1893
Lovina Streevy

Nov. 18, 1893
George D. Riley
50 yrs 2 mo 22 ds

Among others buried here, were: Orin, child of Christian Heverly, 1842; Mary Ann, aged 6 years, daughter of Daniel Heverly, 40;s; and "Granny" Staley, 1875, claimed to be 95 years old. Mrs. Staley was the mother of Mrs. John Streevy and Mrs. Margaret McCann. She came to the township with her son, Aaron Shotts. She was an interesting, little, very old woman. Mrs. Jacob Sherman was the mother of Henry and Peter and was known as "Grandmother Sherman."
A modest granite monument, handsomely designed, has been erected in this cemetery to the memory of Daniel Heverly, the first settler, and other pioneers, through the efforts of Daniel Heverly (3rd) and other relatives. The monument will be unveiled with fitting exercises, September 16, 1910.

Heverly Cemetery.


Oct. 20, 1856
Catharine, wife F. S. Boyles
31 yrs 11 mos 6 ds

May 24, 1864
Harriet Isabell Heverly
8 yrs 6 mos 1 dy

Aug. 19, 1864
John Heverly
75 yrs 5 mos 5 ds

May 18, 1880
Almira, wife John Heverly
80 yrs 8 mos 27 ds

Mar. 7, 1885
Almira, wife O. M. Chase
50 yrs 10 mos 6 ds

Feb. 17, 1892
Orange M. Chase (Civil War)
65 yrs 2 mos 20 ds

A number of bodies have been taken up and removed to other cemeteries.

McGovern Cemetery (Catholic).


Mar. 17, 1844
Francis, son Edw. McGovern
5 yrs 2 mos 3 ds

Aug. 9, 1855
Mary, wife Thomas Coggins

Feb. 1, 1858
Bridget, wife Daniel O’Neill

Aug. 12, 1859
John McAndrew

Mar. 14, 1862
Margaret, daughter Thos. Coggins
21 yrs 10 mos 9 14 ds

April 7, 1862
Bartholomew Mullen

Aug. 23, 1862
Ellen Boland

Dec. 1, 1862
Bridget, daughter Thos. Coggins
13 yrs 6 mos 21 ds

Dec. 4, 1862
Catharine, daughter Thos. Coggins
25 yrs 3 mos 18 ds
April 7, 1863
Bridget, wife James Purcell

July 30, 1869
Mary, wife Patrick Nagle
25 yrs 9 mos 20 ds

March 16, 1870 Thomas Coggins

April 1, 1876
Edward McGovern

Aug. 24, 1877
Bridget, wife Thomas Harden

Aug. 9, 1881
Daniel O’Neill
80 yrs 6 mos 7 ds

March 14, 1884 Margaret, dau. T. & B. Harden

April 5, 1888
Margaret, wife Edward McGovern

Feb. 26, 1889
John Conmey

May 8, 1893
Patrick McGovern

April 5, 1894
Jane, wife John Conmey

Oct. 15, 1898
Thomas Harden
76 yrs 6 mos 28 ds

An inscription shows that four children of D. F. and Katie O’Brien – John, Daniel, Jennie and Alice, ages 10, 6, 4 and 1 ½ years, died between January 4 and 20, 1883.

St. Paul Reformed Cemetery.


March 3, 1854
John, son William & h. Waltman
11 3

Jan. 7, 1856
Ludwig Rinebold
68 8 23

Sept. 10, 1856
Sally Ann, daughter I. Bleiler
17 3 19

July 2, 1862
Jacob, son W. & A. Hottenstein
7 5

May 2, 1862
Phian, wife P. Sherman
29 2

Oct. 9, 1862
Daniel, son R. & C. Rinebold
8 8 28

March 29, 1863 Mary Ann, wife I. D. Cold
41 4 24

April 22, 1863
Henry Heverly (Civil War)
32 4 6

Dec. 17, 1863
Magdalena, wife H. Hottenstein
57 3 9

Jan. 6, 1864
Esther, daughter P. & P. Sherman
5 6 6

Feb. 20, 1864
Edward J. Rinebold (Civil War)
20 5 6

March 12, 1864 Sally, wife Ludwig Rinebold
72 5 22

March 19, 1865 Eliza, daughter R. & C. Rinebold
19 7 17

Jan. 16, 1866
Henry, son W. & A. Hottenstein
5 8 16

Nov. 7, 1866
Alice, daughter J. & R. Hottenstein
7 1 19

March 18, 1867 Catharine, wife R. Rinebold
45 2

June 18, 1868
Valeska, daughter Edward Francke
26 6

Jan. 16, 1869
Eli Heverly

43 10 26

Sept 14, 1869
Minahubener, wife F. Osthaus
26 10 7

March 12, 1870 Annie, daughter H. & L. Heverly
7 10 29

April 11, 1870
Wallace, son E. & A. Heverly
7 10 29

August 29, 1870 Magdalena, wife Daniel Heverly

Dec. 14, 1870
Henry Hottenstein
63 9 23

Sept. 5, 1871
Henry Heverly
67 9 11

Oct 4, 1871
Oscar, son M. & C. Hottenstein
6 7 8

Feb. 11, 1874
Daniel Heverly

Feb. 25, 1875
Conrad Rinebold
62 3 15

Sept. 5, 1876
Rosina, wife J. C. Hottenstein
37 4 24

Oct. 8, 1876
Arthur C. Osthaus
22 1 19

March 27, 1877 George Munch (Civil War)
53 8 29

Sept. 10, 1877
Mary, wife Andrew Wilt
70 9 5

Nov. 22, 1877
Henry Nevel

48 9 20

Jan. 5, 1879
Lydia, wife J. S. Hottenstein
81 9 10

Sept. 30, 1879
Francis R. Rinebold
30 1 14

Nov. 3, 1879
Esther, daughter A. & L. Rinebold
23 8 29

Sept. 24, 1880
Isaac Streevy


Nov. 6, 1880
Jacob S. Hottenstein
81 10 5

Dec. 2, 1880
George, son J. & M. Heverly
13 1 12

Dec. 7, 1880
Cora, daughter J. & M. Heverly
10 5 9

Feb. 4, 1881
John Sherman
36 7 14

April 25, 1881
Vialina, wife R. Musselman
47 4 4

Jan. 11, 1882
Mary, wife Isaac Bleiler
75 7 12

March 5, 1882
Elizabeth, wife Henry Sherman
62 7 29

April 15, 1884
Hannah, wife Wilson Streevy
41 10 18

May 4, 1885
Caroline, wife A. Molyneux
29 10

Aug. 10, 1886
Elizabeth, wife Isaac Streevy

Sept. 26, 1886
Lucinda, wife C. M. Williams
40 2 24

Sept. 29, 2886
Maria, wife S. Wayman
59 2 17

April 19, 1887
Edward F. Francke
85 3 13

Sept. 25, 1887
Jacob Musselman
91 3 9

Jan. 9, 1888
Isaac Bleiler
77 2 15

Aug. 10, 1888
Helen, wife G. O. Musselman
26 8 8

Dec. 6, 1888
Levina, wife A. R. Goughler

Jan. 23, 1889
Rosina, wife Henry Heverly

April 5, 1889
Andrew Wilt
87 9 24

March 22, 1890 Addison Rinebold

May 14, 1890
Hannah, wife J. Musselman
80 9 20

March 6, 1891
Peter Sherman

Jan. 8, 1892
Albert Molyneux
47 9 8

March 21, 1892 Samuel C. Kester

May 30, 1894
Ellen, wife John Eberlin
30 7 12

July 7, 1896
Ira, son P. & H. Rohe
19 3 18

July 8, 1897
Mary Ann Hottenstein
71 2 7

March 12, 1898 Angeline, wife W. J. Hottenstein
61 5 19

April 5, 1898
Amanda, wife A. Monroe
28 8 28

July 20, 1898
George Bender
79 2 19

Nov. 12, 1898
Peter Gibbs
52 9 14

Nov. 22, 1898
John W. Hottenstein (Civil War)
66 1 18

Augusta, wife E. F. Francke

March 5, 1899
William Sherman
58 5 26

Sept. 5, 1899
Maria Wilt
60 2 9

Oct. 3, 1899
John B. Saam
36 11 21

Dec. 21, 1899
George W. Shaffer
79 3 5

May 4, 1901
Elizabeth, wife P. Sherman

July 1, 1901
George S. Carner

April 7, 1902
Henry Sherman (Civil War)

July 7, 1902
Anna, wife C. E. Molyneux
34 4 14

Dec. 6, 1902
Eli Conklin (Civil War)
65 4

June 6, 1903
Sarah, wife George Munch
83 4 26

July 20, 1903
William J. Hottenstein
75 6 5

June 12, 1904
Mary, wife Thomas Gemmell

Dec. 18, 1904
Samuel Bender
33 2 17

March 11, 1905 Jacob Sherman (Civil War)
70 3 9

April 13, 1905
Caroline, wife Thomas Streby
69 6 3

Nov. 5, 1905
Hannah, wife William Waltman
78 8 13

Dec. 8, 1907
Thomas Streby
76 11 6

Dec. 9, 1907
Mary, wife J. W. Hottenstein
76 8 17

March 16, 1909 Jacob Heverly
76 5

Sugar Ridge Cemetery (Catholic).


June 23, 1848
Bridget, daughter T. & M. Leahy

April 6, 1851
Daniel Flynn

Feb. 15, 1855
Patrick Fleming

May 11, 1859
Mary, wife Thomas Leahy

May 22, 1860
John Lane Sr.

June 27, 1860
Johanna, mother John and Wm. Flynn 73

May 11, 1861
Thomas Leahy

June 2, 1862
Sally, wife James Conmey
64 5 8

Sept. 27, 1862
Sarah, daughter J. & S. Conmey
19 10 8

Oct. 10, 1862
Eleanor, daughter J. & S. Conmey
10 9

Jan. 28, 1863
Catharine, daughter M. & M. Lane
5 8

April 11, 1863
Thomas Frawley

April 11, 1863
Bridget, wife T. Fleming

Aug. 6, 1863
Daniel, son D. & B. Keefe
6 9 22

May 3, 1864
Annora, daughter M. & M. Kelly
10 2

May 21, 1864
Dennis Lane

June 13, 1864
Michael, son M. & M. Kelly
7 2

Aug. 6, 1865
Elizabeth, wife Patrick Keefe

July 5, 1870
Kate, daughter T. & M. Grimes

Aug. 25, 1870
Patrick O’Brien

Feb. 22, 1872
Sabina, wife A. Mullany

April 24, 1872
Bridget, wife M. Fogarty

July 7, 1872
Patrick, son Daniel Keefe
22 3 23

Dec. 16, 1872
Mary, wife Patrick O’Brien

Dec. 16, 1872
Bridget, daughter T. & M. Grimes

April 17, 1874
Anna, daughter T. & M. Sweeny
7 5 4

March 18, 1875 Mary, daughter M. Hannon
15 8 5

March 26, 1875 Katie, daughter M. Hannon
17 7 27

Oct. 3, 1875
Patrick Keefe

April 18, 1876
Eliza, wife Patrick Leonard
27 2

Dec. 19, 1876
Maggie, wife T. J. Jordan

Oct. 3, 1878
Mary, wife Michael Toohey
41 6

May 28, 1879
Mary, wife John Lane, Sr.

July 12, 1879
Richard Bray

Aug 20, 1879
Margaret Fleming

Feb. 12, 1889
Mary, wife Michael Kelly

April 7, 1880
Ellen, wife Henry Tolan
72 11 6

August 5, 1880 Julia A. Frawley

Dec. 27, 1880
James Frawley

May 6, 1881
Bridget, wife James Frawley

Feb. 9, 1882
Catherine Kelly

March 5, 1882
Richard Cunningham

March 6, 1882
Dennis Tompkins

Oct. 22, 1882
Timothy Fleming

Feb. 22, 1883
Catharine, wife Daniel Lane

March 22, 1883 Johanna, wife Dennis Keefe

March 27, 1883 Margaret, wife Daniel Moore

March 8, 1884
Mary Mullany
21 4 24

Sept. 25, 1885
Bridget, wife Daniel O’Keefe

Oct. 18, 1885
Henry Tolan
72 11 6

Aug. 15, 1886
Daniel O’Keefe

Nov. 15, 1886
Mary, wife Michael Hannon

Feb. 3, 1887
Ann, wife James Shahan

Nov. 16, 1887
Nellie, wife Thomas Sweeny

Sept. 3, 1888
Patrick Leahy

Nov. 17, 1888
Anthony Mullany

July 5, 1889
Michael Mullany

Sept. 12, 1889
Annie, wife R. Cunningham

Jan. 14, 1890
Dennis Keefe

Jan. 31, 1890
Annie, daughter M. & B. Byron
5 3 26

Jan. 18, 1891
Ellen, wife Patrick Leahy

Nov. 25, 1891
Daniel Lane
79 9

Nov. 26, 1891
Anne, wife B. Mullen

Dec. 28, 1891
James Shahan

Jan. 17, 1892
Timothy, son John Frawley
27 3 12

Jan. 30, 1892
Joseph, son John Frawley
15 7

Feb. 2, 1892
Mary, daughter John Frawley
22 6 25

Feb. 9, 1892
Catharine, daughter John Frawley
21 8

Nov. 9, 1892
Joseph Fleming
7 7

Nov. 11, 1892
John Fleming
5 6
Nov. 24, 1892

Mary Fleming
9 9

Bridget, wife Thomas Mullen

June 25, 1893
Mary, wife Patrick Frawley

Aug. 23, 1893
Margaret, wife Patrick Dorsey

Mary E. Mullen

Sept. 13, 1896
Mary, wife John Frawley

Oct. 4, 1896
Mary, daughter T. & E. Collins
35 1 12

April 7, 1897
Patrick Frawley

April 26, 1897
Nora, daughter T. & N. Sweeny
25 1 29

March 10, 1898 John F. Lane
48 1 4

August 2, 1898 Timothy Collins
71 9

Nov. 7, 1899
Bernard Houck

Feb. 11, 1901
Catherine, wife John Lane, Jr.
75 1 9

April 27, 1901
Patrick Dorsey

June 3, 1901
Bridget, wife Michael Byron
48 4 8

Mary, wife Jeremiah Keefe

Ann, wife Michael Byron

Nov. 1903
Patrick McHale

Sept. 30, 1906
Miles Sweeny

This cemetery was established during the 50’s. Some of the earliest marked graves are of persons, whose remains have been transferred from other cemeteries.

Overton M. E. Cemetery.


Dec. 27, 1860
Christian Heverly
60 3 15

Sept. 6, 1864
Sally, wife James Heverly
39 7 18

Oct. 19, 1866
James Heverly
47 1 16

June 25, 1873
Martha, wife Christian Heverly
72 4 9

March 27, 1880 Oliver C. Epley
20 7 20

August 14, 1880 Austin L. Newland
74 1 17

Nov. 3, 1881
Mabel, daughter B. J. & M. Hausknecht 5 5 28

Dec. 23, 1882
Simon L. Kunes
47 2 3

Sept. 12, 1885
Eliza, wife John Matthews
65 9 3

Jan. 12, 1889
Elizabeth, wife Brooks Epley
67 4 19

April 15, 1889
Daniel P. Gibbs
76 4 6

July 7, 1889
John Matthews
70 8 24

Nov. 19, 1893
C. C. Lancaster
65 8 15

Jan. 22, 1894
Albert M. Stetler (Civil War)

April 8, 1895
John Powers
24 6 22

Sept. 20, 1895
Effie, wife A. L. Rinebold

Oct. 13, 1896
Martha, wife B. J. Hausknecht
44 4 12

May 25, 1897
Myron Heverly
41 4 23

April 26, 1900
Mira, wife Lewis Rinebold

Oct. 3, 1900
Ida, wife L. T. Powers
32 1 4

May 12, 1901
Maggie, wife W. H. H. Willey
64 3 14

March 30, 1904 Thomas H. Kunes
43 4 17

July 21, 1904
Brooks Epley (Civil War)
84 5 8

Marie, wife S. L. Kunes

Sept. 14, 1905
Manning F. Matthews
59 10 8

W. S. Dieffenbaugh

Cemetery established about 1880. Records prior to that date are of persons whose remains have been transferred from other cemeteries.

St. Francis Cemetery (Catholic).


May 13, 1880
Hannora, wife James Hannon

April 30, 1882
James Sheedy

Jan., 1883
Kittie, daughter M. & E. O’Brien

Feb. 18, 1883
Jeremiah, son J. & M. Sheedy

Feb. 11, 1889
Margaret, wife C. Driscoll

Aug. 4, 1889
Bridget, wife P. Driscoll

March 19, 1890 James Hannon

Sept. 1, 1892
Charles F. Richlin
68 6 10

May 30, 1895
Jacob J. Zubrowski
81 1 15

Sept. 6, 1895
Margaret, wife N. Sherman

March 8, 1896
Katie, wife D. F. O’Brien
46 6 23

May 1, 1897
Julia, wife B. W. Fawcett
30 5

June 19, 1897
Margaret McCann

Annie M. Kelly

June 29, 1898
Frederick Heichemer (Civil War)
53 8 18

Mary, wife Daniel Kelly

May 2, 1899
Elizabeth Broshart
79 10 24

Sept. 29, 1899
Clara, wife J. J. Zubrowski
66 1 17

April 12, 1900
Frank Roe

Daniel Kelly

April 4, 1903
John M. Kelly
33 5 15

Aug. 17, 1903
Mary A. wife E. Francke

July 6, 1904
Martin Rouse

March 16, 1905 John Murray

Sabina, wife M. Mullen

Peter Rohe

Ivan H. Corcoran

April 19, 1908
Edward Francke (Civil War)

Cemetery established about 1890. Records prior to that date are of persons whose remains have been transferred from other cemeteries.


Overton Boys of Mark.

The most precious product of the hills of Overton has been her sons that have gone forth as useful servants in the callings of life, benefactors to mankind and men successful in affairs, teaching the lesson of "great possibilities" and the achievements of honest, well directed effort. Overton has never furnished a President, but was the boyhood home of a Governor, a Bishop and many bright and useful men:

Bishop Thomas McGovern, son of Edward and Margaret McGovern, was nine years old when his parents moved to Overton. His early ambition was to acquire an education. "Frequently after his hard day’s work in the fallow he would lie down at night and study some book by the light of the burning logs." After attending the public schools of Overton and self preparation, he entered St. Mary’s College, Emmittsburg, Md., from which he was graduated in 1859. He concluded his theological course in the seminary of St. Charles Borromeo and Overbrook, and was ordained a priest, December 27, 1861. His first official duty was assistant at St. Michael’s church, Kensington, and next as assistant at St. Philip’s church, Second and Queen streets, Philadelphia. In June, 1864, he was sent to Bellefonte, where he officiated for six years, and from there to York, where he stayed until 1873 when he was sent to Danville. In 1881 he took an extensive tour through Europe, Asia and Africa. He was appointed Bishop of the Harrisburg diocese, January 15, 1888, serving until the time of his death – July 25, 1898, aged 66 years. He was one of the best known and most beloved Catholic prelates in the United States.

Governor William Goebel of Kentucky attended his first school and spent his early childhood in Overton. He was a son of William Goebel, and was born January 4, 1856, in Albany township, Bradford county, Pa. His father, who was a German and carpenter by occupation, came to Overton in 1857 and lived on the John Streevy place. He was a man of intelligence and an excellent mechanic. Among the buildings erected by him were school house No. 1, the Sherman house and Sheedy house. Mr. Goebel went South with his family in 1861 or ’62. His son, William, who became a great force in Kentucky political affairs, was described in 1899 "as one of the most unique and impressive characters Kentucky has developed in a quarter of a century. His personality is suggestive of force, determination and intelligence. He is 43 years old, short, straight and plump, without being stocky. His movements are quick and alert, always without being conspicuous. By sheer force of will he has become a celebrity in politics. He is a calm, passive man, who says little. He seldom smiles and in a crowd is unobtrusive. He is a cool, calculating thinking machine. He has courage, too. Once – in 1895 – he shot and killed a man, the president of a bank, who tried to shoot him. But Goebel is ordinarily known as a man of peace. He is a lawyer and a good one, with a big practice." After an exciting contest he was chosen Governor in 1899, and shot by a wicked and cowardly assassin, January 30, 1900.

Hon. Daniel L. O’Neill, son of Daniel and Bridget O’Neill, was born December 10, 1835, at Port Deposit, Md. When a child he removed with his parents to Overton, where his time in early life was diligently spent in assisting in clearing up a farm and in attending the district school. He had a keen perception, learned easily and soon had a mind stored with useful knowledge. At the age of seventeen he began a successful career as teacher, a calling he followed for eight years. He then entered the law office of Hon. Hendrick B. Wright, and in 1864 was admitted to the Luzerne county Bar. He soon rose to prominence in the legal profession, and in 1868 was chosen State Representative from Luzerne, proving a very able and most useful member. He has also served two terms as member of the Wilkes-Barre city council, five terms as member of the school board and held other offices of trust, in all of which he acquitted himself with credit to himself and to the satisfaction of his constituents. He has a bright and interesting family, four of his sons being lawyers. Mr. O’Neill is still actively engaged in the practice of his profession at Wilkes-Barre.

John McGovern, son of Edward and Margaret McGovern, was born June 30, 1824 in Ireland. He came to Overton with his parents and gave his faithful assistance in clearing land and lumbering until 1847, when he entered upon his successful career as railroad contractor. He performed many important contracts, and by strict attention to details, careful management and the over seeing of his business in person earned a fine fortune. In 1876 he retired to the homestead in Overton until after the death of his mother in 1888. He then went to Lancaster, Pa., to reside with his daughter, and oversee his large farm near that city. Here he died September 8, 1899. Mr. McGovern won a wide reputation as being a shrewd and successful business man. His fortune, amounting to several hundred thousand dollars, was the greatest ever accumulated by an Overton boy. Mr. McGovern was a genial gentleman, with a big heart and an ever helping hand. His kind and encouraging words were always inspiring. He was a generous and royal host, in short, one of nature’s noblemen. His closing years were saddened by the sudden demise of his son, Edward, in October, 1896, at the age of 39 years. Edward was a gentleman of kindly nature beloved by everybody. His sister, Mrs. Alice E. McConomy and children are the only surviving members of the family.

Philip O’Neill, son of Daniel and Bridget O’Neill, who spent his early life in Overton, distinguished himself as a soldier and writer. After a service of eleven years in the U. S. Cavalry and Navy he gave his attention to literary pursuits. His poetry was of high order; and his style as a writer, finished and entertaining. He labored many years as editor and correspondent, and won considerable renown in the literary world. He died at Wilkes-Barre, Pa. in 1899, aged 66 years.

J. Andrew Wilt, born in Overton in 1848; entered the service of the Union, under the age of 15 years, in 1863 and served until after the close of the war. Returning home, through his own efforts, he obtained a good education, and for several years was a successful teacher in Bradford and Sullivan counties. He read law, and in 1875 was admitted to practice in the several courts of Bradford county. In 1878 was appointed County Superintendent to fill vacancy caused by the death of A. A. Keeney. He was elected District Attorney of Bradford county in 1886, Prothonotary in 1899 and re-elected in 1902. His administrations were painstaking, efficient and popular. In 1910 he was appointed Supervisor of Census for the Bradford-Susquehanna-Wayne-Wyoming district and performed his duties with great credit and efficiency. Besides these offices he has been Burgess of Towanda Borough and several years a member of the School Board. Being deeply interested in the history of the county for several years, he has acted as Secretary of the Bradford County Historical Society. For many years Mr. Wilt has been prominently identified with the G. A. R. In 1905 he was elected Department Commander of Pennsylvania and his term was signalized by faithful work. He was one of the most active in organizing the Militia company at Towanda in 1876, and was chosen second lieutenant of Company K of the 12th Regiment, and subsequently as captain of Company A of the 9th. Personally, Captain Wilt is unassuming, candid and companionable, displaying those qualities of mind and heart, which attract men and win their confidence and esteem. He is a prominent Odd Fellow and Mason, but, above all, is a most worthful and patriotic citizen. He has been a resident of Towanda since 1872.

Clement F. Heverly, born in Overton in 1859, was farmer boy and mechanic. Through faithful effort procured a good education; began teaching at 17 years and pursued educational and literary work until 1890. Was appointed by Secretary of War Robert T. Lincoln to a cadetship at West Point in 1881, but resigned by reason of age. In 1884 was elected County Auditor, being the first and only resident of Overton ever elected to county office. Was chosen deputy Prothonotary by Gen. H. J. Madill in 1891 and served three years. In 1894 founded the BRADFORD STAR, which he has since edited and published. His editorials and "battles for necessary reform" have attracted wide attention, and been productive of great good and large saving to the public. Mr. Heverly has written extensively on local history and is the author of many volumes, besides a text book on United States history. He served four years as Secretary and has been Librarian of the Bradford County Historical Society since 1906. He has been a resident of Towanda the past 19 years.

In the Christian ministry faithful workers sent out from Overton have been Father Charles Heichemer, Father Daniel Cusick and Rev. Edward C. Musselman. Others successful in the legal profession are Lemuel Fawcett and Edward J. Mullen. Charles Molyneux, Lawrence Byron and Edgar R. Park qualified themselves for the successful practice of medicine.

Facts and People, 1910

Overton village comprises a population of about 80 persons. The town was plotted in 1856 by Henry Sherman and the first lot sold to Joseph Mosbacher, who began blacksmithing in the village in 1855. In 1873 an effort was made to have the town and a considerable surrounding territory incorporated into a borough. The greater part of the inhabitants remonstrated and the request was refused by the Court. Situated in the center of a rich agricultural district, Overton for many years has been an excellent trading point. The present business concerns are: General merchants – F. Osthaus & Co., E. Francke & Son; creamery products – E. C. Musselman; shops and manufacturing – William Bird, G. L. Rinebold; blacksmithing – George Bower; shoemaking – C. F. O’Connell; hotel – J. J. Hannon; barber – James B. Smith. The town has a hall and two organizations – a Tent of Maccabees and Overton Grange. Arthur J. Bird is the resident physician. An important industry in the western part of the township is the Barclay Chemical Works, manufacturing wood alcohol and charcoal.

The assessor’s report for Overton township (1910)gives the following:

Value of real estate
Money at interest
County tax
Cows (237); value
Horses (119); value
No. taxable (including non –residents) 214
No. school children (Twp. And Ind. Dist) 115

The residents of Overton (1910) including heads of families and other over twenty-one years of age, are:

Isaac Bailey
Henry Corner
George Hartford
Joseph Bailey
Newton Cranmer
Alex C. Haverly
J. M. Baker
Arthur Cunningham
Fred Haverly
Charles Bartlow
John Cunningham
John Haverly
James Bennett
Joseph Decker
Joseph Heidt
Nelson H. Bidell
Frank Dieffenbaugh
Mrs. Angeline Heverly
Dr. Arthur J. Bird
Joseph E. Dieffenbaugh
Clara Heverly
George Bird
Maria Dieffenbaugh
Mrs. Clara Heverly
Lee Bird
Thomas Dieffenbaugh
Daniel Heverly
William Bird
John Dorsey
Daniel Heverly (4th)
Oscar Birdsall
James Driscoll
Frank Heverly
Carl Bleiler
Charles Epley
Mrs. Mary Heverly
Clarence Bleiler
Curtis Epley
Orin R. Heverly
Frank P. Bleiler
Samuel Epley
Russell Heverly
Reuben Bleiler
John Fogarty
Wallace Heverly
William Bleiler
Matthew Fogarty
Caroline Hottenstein
George L. Bower
Michael Fogarty
George E. Hottenstein
Fred Broshart
Joseph J. Francke
Ira Hottenstein
Joseph Broshart
Daniel J. Frawley
John C. Hottenstein
Lizzie Byron
John F. Frawley
William Hottenstein
Matthew Byron
John Frawley
Mrs. Mary Houck
Michael Byron
Mrs. Mary Frawley
Edward Jennings
Michael Byron, Jr.
Michael Frawley
Frank Keefe
A. M. Campbell
Thomas E. Frawley
Jeremiah Keefe
Fred E. Card
Thomas H. Frawley
Jeremiah Keefe, Jr.
Mrs. Arvilla Carner
E. L. Green
Joseph Keefe
George Cederburg
Thomas Griffith
Patrick Keefe
Arvilla Chambers
Maggie Grimes
William Kinner
Benjamin Chase
Terrence Grimes
Rozell Knapp
Fred Chase
Thomas Grimes
Mrs. Clara Lancaster
Mahlon M. Chase
Lyman Hakes
Frank Lancaster
Barbara Clark
James J. Hannon
Frank P. Leahy
Belinda Clark
Katie Hannon
Hugh Leahy
Edward Clark
Maggie Hannon
John Lee
Daniel Collins
Mayme Hannon
Joseph Lee
Mrs. Ellen Collins
Benj. J. Hausknecht
George Martin
Michael J. Collins
Herb. E. Hausknecht
R. S. Martin
Al. Mayo
Con. F. O’Connell
Richard Sherman
William Mayo
John O’Connell
William Sick
William McCarthy
John O’Connell, Jr.
George Slocum
Charles McGroarty
Julia O’Connell
James B. Smith
Melissa Messersmith
Christopher F. Platt
Clinton Streby
Edw. T. Molyneux
George Pratzman
Edward Streby
Jacob Molyneux
Daniel Ragan
William L. Streby
Ray Molyneux
William Ragan
Allen Streevy
Daniel Moore
Addison L. Rinebold
Ornal N. Streevy
George Morris
Charles Rinebold
James Sweeney
James Morris
Gilbert L. Rinebold
Mary Sweeney
Rev. J. F. Morrison
Lewis Rinebold
Thomas Sweeney
Anthony. J. Muller
Fred Royce
Floyd Swingle
Thomas Mullen
Ford Serine
Stephen Swingle
Mrs. John Murray
Henry Serine
Fred Teeter
Julia Murray
William Serine
G. C. Thrasher
Maggie Murray
John L. Shaffer
Herbert Updegraff
Michael Murray
John Shahan
Jonas Updegraff
Geo. O. Musselman
John F. Sheedy
Ira Vough
Reuben Musselman
Fred Sherman
William Wanck
Mrs. Jennie Nestor
Hannah Sherman
Lloyd Warburton
Dennis F. O’Brien
Leo Sherman
Leroy Williams
William O’Brien
Nelson Sherman
Ray Williams


Although costing a vast amount of research and labor, it is a matter of great satisfaction and pleasure for us to be able to present this volume to the many people who will be interested in its contents. It has not been our aim to make fancy word pictures, but to write history such as will endure for all time. Public and family records have generally been consulted for information, and in verifying all material facts. From Betsy Granteer, Betsy Streevy, Jacob Heverly, Henry Sherman, Elizabeth Rogers, Rosina Heverly, Ezra Kellogg, Wells Wilcox, Charlotte Ormsby, Amasy Heverly, William Heverly, Andrew Wilt, Almira Chase, Caroline Mosier, Martha Dieffenbaugh, John McGovern, William J. Hottenstein, Mary A. Hottenstein, John Molyneux and many others, who are now resting in their eternal sleep, most valuable information was obtained. We are under many obligations to George E. Hottenstein for working out and furnishing us with many details, and to Mrs. Lydia Covey, Daniel Heverly, John C. Hottenstein, Ezra Rinebold, Mrs. Elizabeth Heverly, Hon. D. L. O’Neill, J. Andrew Wilt, Thomas Mullen, Thomas Grimes, Thomas Sweeny, C. J. Sullivan, Mrs. Angeline Heverly and G. L. Rinebold for aid and valuable information. To these and many others, whose names may have been overlooked, we wish to express our gratitude.

Copyright © 2002 Robert E. Sweeney and individual Contributors. All Rights Reserved. Prior written permission is required from Robert E. Sweeney and individual Contributors before this material can be printed or otherwise copied, displayed or distributed in any form. This is a FREE genealogy site sponsored through PAGenWeb and can be reached directly at ~Sullivan County Genealogy Project (