An Early History

July 15th, 2007

According to Frederic A. Godcharles, the very first record we have of white men visiting the west branch valley of the Susquehanna River was in September 1728 when the great Delaware Chief, Shikellamy, was representing the Six Nations at Shamokin. The next visit of white men came in 1737 when Conrad Weiser (1696-1760) was on his way to Onondaga, NY to meet with the Six Nations to negotiate between the Native Americans and the proprietors of Pennsylvania. On March 8, 1737 he was at Shikellamy’s hunting lodge at the mouth of Warrior Run, just below the present site of Watsontown. Then came the Moravian missionaries such as Count Nikolaus Ludwig von Zinzendorf (1700-1760), Bp. Spangenberg and many others. The West Branch of the Susquehanna at that time was called Otzinachson, or the Devil’s Den, deriving its name from the great caverns in the rocky ledges that lined the banks of the stream to the south. Shikellamy was baptized by the Moravians as John Shikellamy and was given a Christian burial following his death on December 17, 1748. There was an uneasy period following the death of Chief Shikellamy that eventually broke out in bloodshed following the defeat of British General Edward Braddock (1695-1755) at the Battle of the Monongahela on July 9, 1755. Realizing the British were not invincible added courage to the Native Americans who were growing more and more concerned by the number of British settlers that were beginning to encroach on their hunting grounds. It took little for the French to encourage these tribes to fight against the British during the French and Indian War (1754-1763). There was a series of attacks on the colonists including the Penns Creek Massacre, the massacres at Mahonoy Creek and the destruction of Shamokin. Fort Augusta was built in July 1756 by Colonel William Clapham (1722-1763) and many settlers took refuge within its walls. The next important clash was some seven years later, when on August 26, 1763 the battle of Muncy Hills was fought. This was between Warrior Run and Warrior Spring, west of Muncy. Then came the cruel murder of White Mingo and five other Indians by Frederick Stump and John Ironcutter of Selinsgrove on January 10, 1768. The land titles of what would become the present site of Watsontown were obtained in the following manner: “The officers of the First and Second battalions of the Pennsylvania regiment, who had served in Bouquets expedition, formed an association at Carlisle in 1764 and entered into an agreement to ‘apply to the Proprietories for a tract of land, sufficiently extensive and conveniently situated, whereon to erect a compact and defensible town.’ In pursuance of this agreement an application was made to the Proprietories on the 30th of April, 1765, as stated therein, their object was, ‘to embody themselves, and by their arms, union and increase become a powerful barrier to the Province.’ They requested the Proprietories to make a new purchase from the Indians and apportion among them forty thousand acres of arable land on the West Branch of the Susquehanna River. On November 5, 1768 a treaty was made between Thomas and Richard Penn and the Six Nations at Fort Stanwix granting the Penns the region between the West Branch and North Branch of the Susquehanna and establishing the northern boundary at the New York State line. On the 3rd of February 1769, it was ordered by the Board of Property, ‘That Colonel Francis and the officers of the First and Second battalions of the Pennsylvania regiment be allowed to take up twenty-four thousand acres, to be divided among them in, distinct surveys, on the waters of the West Branch of the Susquehanna River, to be seated with a family for each three hundred acres within two years from the time of survey, paying five pounds Sterling per hundred and one penny Sterling per acre.’ The officers acceded to the terms proposed at a meeting at Fort Augusta in the latter part of February and appointed Captains Hunter and Irvine to accompany William Soull in making the surveys of their lands east of the West Branch. At a meeting of the officers at Harris’ Ferry on the 16th of May, he reported having surveyed six thousand and ninety-six acres, which were apportioned to Lieutenant Colonel Turbutt Francis, Ensign Augustus Stein, Captain Samuel Hunter, Captain Nicholas Houssegger, Lieutenant Daniel Hunsicker, Captain William Piper, and Lieutenant James Hays, all of whom were officers in the First battalion, except Captain Piper, of the Second. Colonel Francis’ tract embraced the site of Milton; Ensign Stein’s the mouth of Muddy Run; Captain Hunter’s, the mouth of Warrior Run; Captain Houssegger’s, the site of Watsontown, above which was the site of Lieutenant Hunsicker, Captain Piper took up residence along Delaware Run; and Lieutenant Hays received the land which is the present site of Dewart. The northern most tract went to a Captain Jacob Kern.” Applications for lands in the new purchase were first received at the provincial land office on the 3rd of April, 1769, agreeable to an advertisement of the governor of Pennsylvania. That there should not be several applicants for the same locations, all names were placed in a box or trunk and thoroughly mixed, after which they were drawn out one by one by a disinterested party. The land desired was usually described by natural boundaries or characteristics, proximity to streams or mountains, etc., i.e. Delaware Run, Warrior Run, Muddy Run, Limestone Run, or Chillisquaque Creek. These names had thus gained general currency prior to 1769. There was a rapid influx of people to the new settlement. Between Sunbury and the Muncy Hills the pioneers were principally Scotch-Irish. The Germans were generally from Berks County, the Scotch-Irish from Lancaster and the English and Welsh from New Jersey. So rapid was the settlement of the region drained by the north and west branches of the Susquehanna River that the county of Northumberland was erected on the 21st of March 1772, less than three years after the purchase was opened. Two townships Augusta and Turbut originally comprised its present area. Capt. Samuel Hunter (1732-1784) became the commander at Fort Augusta during the time of the Revolutionary War. Ensign Augustus Stein’s land at the mouth of Muddy Run became the site where Hawkins Boone (cousin to Daniel Boone) built a frontier fort. The largest grant comprising all of the river lands south of the Muddy Run tract to a point a short distance above Chillisquaque Creek was awarded to Col. Turbutt Francis (1740-1797) a total of about 2075 acres (presently the site of Milton). After Northumberland County was created in 1772 settlers from New Jersey including the Vincents, Freelands, and Goulds came to the area followed by the Littles, Durhams, Packs, and Kirks. In 1773, Jacob Freeland build his mill along Warrior Run and a Presbyterian church was in the process of being built in 1775 on the grounds that make up the Watsontown ball field at the Memorial Park. Rev. Philip Vickers Fithian (1747-1776), a graduate of Princeton in the class of 1772 which included Vice President Aaron Burr (1756-1836) and Atty. Gen. William Bradford (1755-1795), was licensed to preach on November 6, 1774 by the First Presbytery of Philadelphia. On the 4th of April 1775, he received an honorable dismission from the presbytery, as there were no vacancies within its boundaries. He left New Jersey on horseback on May 9th for a tour through Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland and Virginia preaching along the way in evangelistic form. He arrived at John Harris’ on June 24, Sunbury June 27, Buffalo Crossroads on Sunday July 9 and on July 12 he reached Captain Piper’s place north of the present site of Watsontown. Here he enjoyed his stay for several days, and on Sunday, July 16, he preached from a wagon to a big crowd at the Presbyterian meeting house (present site of Watsontown Memorial Park). The Wyoming Massacre on July 3, 1778 in which the Native Americans took 227 scalps produced a general panic among the inhabitants of Northumberland County and precipitated what was known as the “Great Run Away.” Boats, canoes, hog troughs, rafts hastily made, in fact every sort of floating article was requisitioned, loaded with women and children (several hundred in all) and a few earthly possessions and floated down the river to Sunbury. The men convoyed this strange flotilla by marching single file on each side of the river. Practically every habitation in Pennsylvania north of the town of Northumberland was abandoned to the ravages of the Native Americans. Nor did the Great Run Away stop there. The refugees were joined by many inhabitants from Northumberland and Sunbury and continued their pell-mell flight. The Tulpehocken Road, the Kings Highway from Fort Augusta to Reading, even the old Indian trails as well as the Susquehanna River itself were jammed with hundreds of inhabitants who continued their flight to Paxtang (Harrisburg), Hummelstown and Carlisle. In fact William Maclay, writing from Paxtang stated that only Colonel Hunter and scarcely one hundred able bodied men remained at Fort Augusta to defend the frontier. The Pennsylvania frontier continued to be a place of danger due to attacks by Native Americans, and it was resolved to send a huge force into the Indian territory in New York and destroy all their towns and villages. Major General John Sullivan (1740-1795) was chosen to carry out this mission. Sullivan left Easton on June 28, 1779 and arrived at Wyoming five days later. Sullivan’s supplies for this expedition were stored at Fort Augusta (Sunbury) at William Maclay’s home which had been stockaded by Colonel Hartley the previous year. From here they were to be transported by bateaux to Wyoming. The British learned of this and sent Captain John MacDonald with a force of 100 British and 300 of the Seneca Tribe to destroy these stores. Arriving at Fort Muncy on July 28, 1779 the invaders found the fort abandoned. They completely destroyed the fort and its contents. Fort Brady, also abandoned, met the same fate. Arriving at Fort Freeland they found the fort strongly fortified. A bitter battle ensued. As the ammunition of our gallant soldiers ran low, the women in the fort melted all the spoons and pewter plates and ran them into bullets. As the battle progressed, Captain MacDonald made three separate demands for capitulation. However, the courageous defenders did not consider surrender until their ammunition was entirely exhausted. Then under a truce, Captain John Lytle and John Vincent deliberated with Captain MacDonald for half an hour and finally agreed to surrender. The terms of surrender have been preserved to us in the Pennsylvania Archives as follows: Articles of Capitulation Entd into Between Captain John MacDonald on his Majasties part and John Little on that of the Continental Congress. Article 1st. The men in Garrison to March out & Ground their Arms in the Green in Front of the Fort which is to be taken in possession of Immediately by his Majesty’s Troops. Agreed to. 2ndly. All men Bearing Arms are to Surrender themselves Prisoners of War & to be Sent to Niagara. Agd. to. 3rd. The Women and Children not to be Stript of their Clothing nor Molested by the Indians and to be at Liberty to move down the Country where they please. Agd. to. John MacDonald, Capt. of Rangers. John Little The fifty-two women and children who had sought refuge in the fort and four old men whom the enemy deemed unfit to march to Niagara were allowed to go unmolested. The soldiers at Fort Boone, at the mouth of Muddy Run, having heard the firing, came to Fort Freeland and unaware of its surrender fired upon the British and Native Americans, killing thirty. MacDonald’s men quickly rallied, killing thirteen Continentals including Captain Samuel Daugherty and Captain Hawkins Boone (cousin of the celebrated Daniel Boone). This delay at Fort Freeland was sufficient to give the alarm at Sunbury, defeating the purpose of MacDonald’s expedition and thus saving Sullivan’s supplies. While the battle was still raging, an express was sent from Fort Boone to Colonel Hunter at Fort Augusta informing him that Fort Freeland was surrounded by the enemy. As nearly every able-bodied man of Northumberland County was either under arms or actively engaged in the bateaux service moving Sullivan’s supplies from Sunbury to Wyoming, Hunter immediately dispatched letters to General Sullivan at Wyoming and to Colonel Joshua Elder at Paxtang urgently seeking assistance. Sullivan could not spear any of his man power, but Elder immediately called for volunteers and on August 2, 1779 Captain Matthew Smith arrived at Sunbury with 60 armed men. Other volunteers arrived daily from Lancaster County, but it was not until August 5, 1779 that sufficient forces were mobilized to march in pursuit of MacDonald and his Rangers. On that date 500 militia marched toward Muncy with the hope that they might overtake MacDonald, free his captives and restore his plunder. The pursuit proved fruitless and after two weeks the volunteers disbanded. The first title to any part of the land upon which the borough is situated was acquired by Lt. Daniel Hunsicker by virtue of military services in the French and Indian War. The application was marked No. 1 and dated February 3, 1769. The tract was surveyed in the succeeding May and was situated between the Delaware Run on the north and a diagonal boundary on the south that extended from the east end of Pear Alley to the opposite terminus of Apple Alley. The most remarkable and interesting feature of this application is the fact that it was the first granted under the land office system established by the Proprietary government for the disposition of the purchase of 1768. To the south of Hunsicker’s warrant, the land was granted to Lt. Nicholas Houssegger for services rendered in the same war; his tract extended for some distance far beyond the southern limits of the town. On the 13th of May, 1792, John Watson, Sr. (1739-1815), then a resident of Londonderry Township, Chester County, PA, purchased from John Harris, of Cumberland County, and Blair McClenachan, a merchant of Philadelphia, a tract of six hundred nine acres known as “Elmdon,” embracing the larger site of Watsontown. The consideration was 1,100 pounds specie (coinage). Harris and McClenachan had secured this land in 1780 by purchase from John Shallus, a merchant of Bristol, Bucks County, for the sum of 1,700 pounds (though it seems that Shallus purchased the land for 1,700 pounds and sold it for 1,100 pounds species, it must be remembered that there was a change in government with the adoption of the Constitution officially replacing the old Articles of Confederation on March 4, 1789 thus changing the value of the currency greatly). Shallus, in partnership with Amos Wickersham, acquired the tract in 1779 by purchase from Thomas Willing to whom it was originally patented March 23, 1774. In 1794, John Watson, Sr. laid out the road running straight back from the river on the Hunsicker-Houssegger line. It was originally called Front Street and later Main Street, but today is known as First Street. In his plan John included a large area for a public square where First Street intersected the road leading from Sunbury to Muncy. This road would become Main Street. But as the town developed and grew the public square was overlooked. Soon after John Watson had laid out his plan for a community, he began selling lots to developers, one of whom was James Watson, no relation to John Watson. James Watson built a shanty covered in slabs and sold whisky from this establishment thus earning the area the nickname “Slabtown.” James’ establishment was described as “a very disreputable place, frequented by the lowest class of boatmen and others.” John Watson was unhappy with what had developed, and he attempted to repurchase the lot, but James Watson wouldn’t sell and kept right on selling whisky at Slabtown. John built a stone house on the north side of First Street where he and his wife, Mary (1738-1807) lived. They had ten children which included: Isabella, b. August 18, 1770; David, b. April 2, 1772; Robert, b. April 11, 1774; Catherine, b. July 17, 1776; John, Jr., b. December 13, 1779; James, b. March 16, 1782; George, b. June 1, 1783; Margaret Susanna, b. November 4, 1785; Mary, b. 1787; and unknown, b. October 26, 1790. John established a distillery, a hattery, and a scythe factory which were all active during his life time. John’s wife, Mary, died on December 30, 1807. As for John Watson, due to the bad experience he had selling to James Watson, he refused to sell any more land and when he died on January 15, 1815, his 1,050 acres were divided between his sons, David, John, Jr. and George. David received a tract along the river below First Street. John, Jr. received a similar tract above First, and George got the high ground on the east. John, Sr. and his wife Mary were buried in the Old Presbyterian Graveyard (where the Memorial Park is located today) and their remains were later removed to the new Watsontown Cemetery. David (1772-1856) established a trade as early as 1794 at the age of 22 and continued to expand it for 45 years until 1839. He “ran the river” using the waterway to move his merchandise on arks and Durham boats. He did well until 1833 when an ark, carrying 1,100 bushels of wheat and some barrels of whisky was sunk. The wheat was lost but the whisky was recovered. David simply said he considered the loss “just a toll” for using the river highway for nearly 40 years and forgot about it. However, he never used the river again. His first place of business was a log storehouse fronting on the river on the lower side of First Street. Later he added a warehouse. According to some sources he also rented out rooms as a hotel as well. There is some dispute whether Watsontown, or Watsonburg as it was known during this time, was named for John Watson, Sr. or for his successful son, David Watson. David was married to Elizabeth Lytle who was born in 1770. David and Elizabeth had the following children: Mariah; Sarah; Harriet; Hattie; Elizabeth; John L., b. January 5, 1801; David Carrey Watson, b. March 12, 1804; and Robert, b. March 19, 1815. Elizabeth died on December 3, 1853 and David died on January 7, 1856. John, Jr. prospered but was not prominent. John was born on December 12, 1779 and married Elizabeth Hanna Hammond who was born in 1766. John and Elizabeth had the following children: Mary Curry Watson, b. November 19, 1811; and John Watson, b. April 29, 1820 (and possibly Ada, Eugene H. and Philip E. as well). John, Jr. and his family moved into their father’s stone house on the north side of First Street. On John, Jr.’s tract of land there was a race course established called “the mile heat.” It extended from First Street north to the vicinity of what is today Tenth Street. The mile heat lasted from 1830 to 1840. Elizabeth died on March 5, 1822. John remarried to Margaret M. who was born in 1798. Margaret died on November 29, 1842. John, Jr. died on January 13, 1858. He and his two wives are buried at Warrior Run Cemetery. Meanwhile, George Watson turned to farming and kept a fairly low profile. George was born September 22, 1783 and married Elizabeth Vincent who was born on September 27, 1789, the daughter of Daniel and Angelchy (Hough) Vincent and grand daughter of Cornelius and Phebe (Ward) Vincent. George and Elizabeth had the following children: Robert; Phoebe F.; Catherine Elizabeth; David; Sarah Jane; George Curry; Mary Curry; Angeline, b. December 15, 1815; and Nancy Vincent, b. February 22, 1821. Elizabeth died on May 27, 1846 and George died October 29, 1856. James Watson, their father’s nemesis continued selling whisky but had done so well that the slab hut had given way to more elaborate surroundings. His hotel later was under the proprietorship of Robert Brown, George Fox and others and was located just a little west of Main Street on the north side of First Street directly opposite what had been the residence of A.J. Guffy. At the time of their father’s death in 1815 there were only a half dozen structures located along First Street. Watsonburg didn’t see much more growth over the next 45 years either, since David and John refused to sell their lands for development. Again, it seemed linked to some kind of unrest with the inhabitants of the community so the Watsons sat tight on their holdings. As early as 1822, Watsonburg began receiving mail by way of Sugar Valley crossing the river by ferry, that had begun operation in 1801 by Daniel Caldwell (1775-1836). It was a weekly mail, carried on horseback by Samuel McKee (1794-1869). In 1828, a post office was established in Watsonburg at the store of David Watson, as David Watson was appointed the first post master for the community in that year. In 1827, Thomas Arbuckle opened a store on First Street, and in 1828 the West Branch Canal was completed to the Muncy Dam. It brought little business until 1830 and even then there was little growth in the community. The first school house in the vicinity of Watsontown was erected in 1790. It was a log structure situated near the bank of the run that flows a short distance south of where the depot was located (now the Women’s Guild Memorial Park). The second school building was built in 1800. It served until 1833 when a more elaborate frame building was erected on the intersection of Sinking Spring and Bald Eagle roads, now the corner of Fifth and Liberty Streets. It was used for school purposes until 1859 when it was destroyed by fire and an academy was built east of the railroad on First Street. Watsontown may be said to have two beginnings, the first of which resulted in the establishment of a small country village, while the second and most successful was the means of bringing into existence the pleasant and enterprising town on the east bank of the West Branch of the Susquehanna River in the extreme northern end of Northumberland County. In 1854, the Sunbury and Erie Railroad decided to build a depot in Watsontown on land donated by David Watson and his brother-in-law Edmund L. Piper (1814-?). This became a turning point in the growth of the little country village. In 1857, Moses Chamberlain (1812-1902) built a lumber mill located where the baseball field is today even though back then there were no more than a dozen or so buildings in the community. In that same year, William Cooner (1818-1897) built a hotel on the north east corner of First and Main Streets and opened for business that August. In 1858, David and John Watson having died, E.L. Piper bought the lands, laid out lots and offered inducements to settlers. By 1861 the town began to grow. In 1866 the business places of Watsontown consisted of the general store of A.T. Goodman located on the southeast corner of Main and First Streets, the store of Joseph Hogue located on First Street and the store of Enoch and Enos Everitt which faced the canal; the blacksmith shop of B.F. Grier located on Second Street (near the present residence of his daughter-in-law Mrs. Daniel L. Grier 1960), and the blacksmith shop of A.B. Porter located on the north side of Second Street (present site of the Cronrath residence 1960), and a boat yard at the foot of Second Street. At that time there were no buildings north of what is known as the Owen Berkenstock residence at the corner of Fourth and Main Streets except the dwelling of William Banghart between Ninth and Tenth Streets. From Main Street to the canal and from Fourth Street to Tenth Street was one large wheat field and it was no unusual sight to see boys picking berries along the fence paralleling Main Street. The lands on the east side of Main Street north of Third were all cultivated farm lands. From a population of 300 in the spring of 1866 the town grew to 900 within a year. By 1868 thirty houses were being built at one time. With such rapid growth the leading townsmen petitioned Northumberland County and on November 4, 1867 the town was incorporated. The first chief burgess (a citizen elected to represent the town, a position that today is held by the mayor) was Joseph Hollopeter who was elected on November 16, 1867 along with the members of the borough council: Thomas Carl, Frederick S. Witman, Cyrus O. Bachman, John Bly and Dan C. Hogue. [Cited: The Milton Standard, August 11, 1967, pges 4, 5; The Daily Item, August, 1967, pges 21, 22.; The Record and Star, Silver Anniversary Issue, 1907, pg 1; The Record and Star, September 8, 1922, pg 1; The Record and Star, July 24, 1925, pg 1; The Fort Augusta Story, Carter, Sr., John H., 1956, pges 33, 34, 43-46; Evening Standard, Seventieth Anniversary Edition, January 25, 1960, pg 9.] Last Modified: 04.06.09

14 Responses

  1. Debbie Shaffer Says:

    Hi there,

    My husband and I just moved into 34 Main St. in Watsontown and have very little information about the history of our property. We’ve heard it was built in 1851 and also 1852. Anything anyone knows would be appriciated!

    Comment by James Robison: In the Historic Walking Tour dated May 1979, there is a brief history of the home at 34 Main Street, “The present property at 34 Main Street was built in 1851 for Thompson Bower by David Barr. For a time there was a millinery store in one of the front rooms – operated by a member of the Crane family, who was a relative of the Bower’s. This elegant Federal style home also was built using two types of brick work. If you look closely, on Main Street, on either side of the present front door, there are indications of a column porch having been removed at an unknown time. The Flemish Bond and Common Bond Brick work seemed to be a favorite of the local masons – or did they have a special reason? The veranda type porch on the south side is Vicotrian.”

  2. Barbara Datesman Says:

    Looking for information on a
    William P. Datesman
    who had a hotel in Dewart. Weidenhammers are also in the family. Thank you.

  3. V.Snyder Says:

    AWESOME Website! If every town had something like this is would make my genealogy research so much easier. Congratulations to all involved!

  4. Bill Dentler Says:

    I’m looking for information about my great-grandfather William R Dentler and his wife Clara Dimm. They had two children – Lee Dentler (my grandfather) and Luther Dentler (about whom I know little). Any information will be appreciated. Please contact me at [email protected]

    Comment by James Robison: According to, William Dentler was the son of William C. and Christiana (Raup) Dentler. Clara was the daughter of Jacob and Emily (Mackey) Dimm. William’s tombstone gives his birthdate as May 30, 1837 and his deathdate as March 3, 1883. Information on the tombstone for Clara Dimm Dentler gives her birth year as 1853 and in the 1900 Census gives the month of her birth as March. Information from Pennsylvania State Archives concerning vital records gives her death as April 2, 1935 in Pittsburgh, PA [death certificate #34473]. William and Clara are buried at Watsontown Cemetery.

    They had two sons: the oldest was Lee, born December 29, 1880 in Watsontown according to his WW I Draft Registration and was married to Isabel H. Dentler and living in Williamsport PA working for the Pennsylvania Rail Road. They had one son William Lee Dentler who joined Covenant Central Presbyterian Church in Williamsport on March 25, 1931. His wife Mrs. Wm. Lee Dentler joined the same church on February 8, 1948. According to their tombstone, Lee died in 1960 and Isabel, born 1885, died in 1970 and are both buried in Watsontown Cemetery. According to the 1940 Federal Census, Lee had completed 4 years of college as did his son William Lee. Isabel had completed 4 years of high school. According to the 1900 Susquehanna University Yearbook, Lee was a freshman that year. According to Pennsylvania State Archives information on vital records, Lee died April 2, 1960 interesting enough, exactly 25 years to the day of his mother. Lee died in Williamsport, PA.

    William and Clara’s second son was William Luther Dentler, born July 6, 1882. There is a photograph of him in the Bucknell University Yearbook of 1905 on page 39. According to the 1910 Federal Census Record, William was the proprietor of a news stand. According to his WW I Draft Registration he worked as a detective for the Pinkerton’s in Cleveland, Ohio and his nearest relative was Clara Elizabeth Dentler. By 1930, the Federal Census Record has William living in Pittsburgh where he was a salesman for a department store and his mother was living with him. records his death as December 1967 in Pittsburgh, PA.

  5. Doug Buffington Says:

    If anyone can tell me if Shikellamy was the father of Mary Smith please email me at:
    [email protected]

    Doug Buffington

  6. Carol Berry Says:

    I am tracing Thompson Bower & wife Catherine Gosh. Would you happen to know their Death dates and where they are buried. I think Thompson died 1910-1911.Thanks for any help.

    Comment by James Robison: According to information gleaned from the state archives concerning vital records, Thompson Bower died April 15, 1909 in Watsontown [death certificate #39731]; and Catharine A. Bower died March 29, 1910 in Watsontown [death certificate #30335]; both are buried at Watsontown Cemetery.

  7. June Fasig Says:

    I have an old metal charm (?) that has the name A.H. Cooner 1887 clearly on one side, and Watsontown, PA with a star next to it, on the other side. Any information on this or what it is from is appreciated. Thank you!

  8. Sarah Till Says:

    I live at what used to be 31 Main Street in Dewart which is connected to Watsontown. I am having difficulty finding history on our home. An information would be greatly appreciated!

  9. Dulcie bumpus Says:

    I would like any information on the Reinbone name.

  10. Sara L. Says:

    I was wondering if you would have any information about Loop Road in Watsontown, in such as what use to be located there and anything significant? Thank you very much!

    Comment by James Robison: Honestly, I had not heard of Loop Road until receiving your comment. And actually was unfamiliar with the names of the roads and streets in Delaware Township such as Turbot Avenue since in the borough limits that road is called Matthew Street. After googling it, I would imagine that this road was originally named since it created a loop. Perhaps someone else might be able to assist with more information as to how these roads and streets were so denoted in Delaware Township.

  11. Steve Guffy Says:

    Which house on first st in watsontown was AJ Guffy?

  12. Becca Says:

    Hello, I stumbled on this wonderful site while researching Capt. Andrew Lee. An excerpt of Capt. Lee’s diary is online and gives a detailed account of his Uncle John Lee and a place called Freeland’s Mill, his children being killed and kidnapped/rescued and Gen. Sullivan’s Campaign…quite a read!

  13. Deb decker Says:

    Our family owned the Watsontown Shoe and Boot -LLLewis. I would like to know the address (I know it burned down) and do you have a picture of it in your files? Could you send me a copy of it if you have a picture? Thank you.

    Comment by James Robison: The address was 222 Main Street and the building was razed in November of 1971 by the Watsontown National Bank to create parking for their customers. There are countless postcards of the building and I am sure the Watsontown Historical Association could arrange to have one scanned for you.

  14. Christine Preston Says:

    Hi I’m looking for information on george Calhoun McKee. We know he lived watsontown but there’s no info on if he was born there or migrated from somewhere. He is buried in watsontown cemetery and appears on some census records but nothing else.

    Comment by James Robison: I found an obit for George McKee who died on January 23, 1912 at the age of 60 and was survived by his wife and his daughter Mrs. Donnelly Barr. His death certificate states he was born in Northumberland County, PA, the son of George C. and Mary (Bennett) McKee. Hope this helps!

Leave a Comment

Please note: Comment moderation is enabled and may delay your comment. There is no need to resubmit your comment.

Posted by Ric Jones and filed under | 14 Comments »