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Copied from Harbaugh's 1909 History


Miami County Ohio

Chapter 8


- Establishment of the County Seat -
- Rivalry Between Staunton and Piqua - Troy Enters the Contest - First Survey by Andrew Wallace - Absence of Graft -
- Description of Troy in 1815 - Log Courthouse Built -
- Brick Court House Built in 1816 - Overfield's Tavern -
- Queer Real Estate Transactions - William Barbee -
- "Squire" Brown and other Early Settlers - The "Broadford War" - - First Railroad - Opening of the Canal -
- The Cholera Scourge in 1850 - First Court of Common Pleas -
- Troy Merchants in 1828 - The Jackson-Adams Campaign -
- Runaway Apprentices - Appearance of the County Seat in 1853 - Mayors Since 1840 - Early Schools and School Teachers -
- Churches - The Post Office - City Government -
- Corner Stone of the Court House Laid, 1885 -
- Masonic Temple Erected -

It was about ten years from the time of the appearance of the first white settlers in the county until the establishment of the county seat at Troy. A court of justice had previously operated at Staunton, being held in the house of Peter Felix, the trader; but the need of a permanent county seat was felt and it was determined to set it up. Already a good deal of rivalry existed between the various interests in the county. Piqua desired to have the honor of being the county town and there were those who considered Staunton the best site. Among the latter the pride of first settlement existed. The first settlement had been made at Staunton and its central situation appealed to many. A good deal of "log rolling "took place.

P>The county was formed by an act of the Legislature dated 16 January 1807, but it was not until the following September that the commission appointed to lay out the seat of justice for Miami County made their return to the court. This report was signed by Jesse Newport, Daniel Wilson, and Joseph Lamb. They fixed upon Fractional Section 21, and the northeast quarter of Section 28, Town 5, Range 6, east of a meridian line drawn from the mouth of the Great Miami River. The site selected consisted of forty acres that was owned by Aaron Tullis, who deeded the tract to Cornelius Westfall, town director, on the 31st day of July, 1813, for $120.30, or about three dollars per acre. On the same day William Barbee and Alexander McCullough deeded to the town director the east part, northeast quarter of Section 28, containing 144 acres and 77 poles, for $421.50.

From the very outset a relentless warfare began over the establishment of the county seat upon the spot described above. The commissioners had been bothered almost to death by the advocates of the different sites. Piqua seemed to consider herself in line for the county seat and could not realize that it could be placed elsewhere than within her limits. As the controversy over this important matter progressed the county seat campaign waxed extremely warm. Piqua got out a map prepared especially to establish her claims and Piqua was the only visible settlement on the map. Troy, in order to controvert Piqua's assumption, forthwith went into the map business herself and produced a chart which showed Troy in the center of the county and her rival so far away, apparently, that communication with the rest of the county would be well neigh impossible. It was then that the rivalry between the two towns began, and the first "court house war" was succeeded by another many years later by the descendants of those who contended in the first.

Not to be left in the lurch, Staunton put in a bid for the county seat. It was claimed that the site of the Dutch Station was the most desirable. The Hathaway and Marshall farms were offered as excellent sites for Miami's seat of justice, and Samuel Beedle and Judge Adams were anxious to sell their farms for this laudable purpose. It was therefore a sore disappointment to Piqua and the land lords of Staunton when it was decreed that Concord Township should hold the county seat.

The town, which was to be thus honored, was first surveyed by Andrew Wallace, who completed his work December 16, 1807. He was allowed $44.50 for his services, and Robert Crawford for his services as director, purchasing the site, laying out and selling the lots, was allowed twenty-four dollars. There was no graft in those days, the whole proceedings were singularly free from all chicanery and everything was honestly conducted.

January 13, 1810, the court settled with Robert Crawford and it was found that he had sold lots to the amount of $2,820, that he had paid accounts as per vouchers, to the amount of $2,163, and paid orders on the treasury, $415. It was then ordered that he be allowed in future on the amount of all lots sold five percent; and on all moneys received and paid out, four percent, and fifty cents for each deed executed to purchasers. The first survey of Troy comprised eighty-seven lots, commencing on Water and Clay Streets, numbered one, extending and comprising all between the river and Back Street to Short Street.

I extract from Drake's "Picture of Cincinnati and the Miami Country," published in 1815, the following concerning the new county seat:

Troy, on the west side of the Great Miami, twenty miles above Dayton and seventy-two miles north of Cincinnati, is the seat of Justice. It was laid out by the commissioners in 1808 and incorporated in 1814. It has a public library and a post office. The houses are chiefly of wood. No permanent county buildings have yet been erected. The reserves and donations by the commissioners are, a square for the court house; one lot for the jail, another for the cemetery and a square for an academy. The site of this place is handsome, but a bayou is occasionally formed across it in high floods and the plain declines into a swamp at the distance of a mile from the river. This swamp, lying to the southwest of the Town, has rendered it unhealthy, but the expense of a drain that Would convert it into dry and arable land is not estimated very high. As in other towns on the Miami, well water is easily obtained. Sandy limestone is quarried about two miles distant. Good timber is plentiful.

Shortly after the establishment of the county seat a log courthouse was built. It was a double log house and was well built; one end of the structure was used for confining prisoners, the other end comprised the sheriff's living room, while court was held in the upper story. The log courthouse was occupied until 1816, when it was superseded by one of brick, which was erected in the Public Square. This temple of justice cost $2,500 and stood until l841, when a third court house, which occupied the present site of the post office was built at an expense of $20,000.

With the establishment of the county seat west of the river the glories of Staunton departed. Piqua started to outrival Troy, and other town sites were laid out in different parts of the county. Beautifully situated on the banks of the Miami, then dressed in the emerald garb of Nature, the new county seat opened its doors to the world. It grew rapidly from the first. There were several additional surveys as new land was added to the town, and there were frequent sales of lots.

One of the first settlers of Troy was a Mr. Overfield, who became the first Boniface of the town. He opened an excellent tavern for that day, and treated all alike. No matter whether the guests came in buckskin or broadcloth, they got the same attention, and Overfield soon became famous as a tavern keeper. This tavern became a great resort for those who attended the first courts held at the county seat. The latest news and the latest decisions were discussed about his fire, and some pretty heated arguments were indulged in. There was good whiskey at the tavern and it is to be supposed that the flowing bowl went round during the discussions. When this first Boniface of Troy had a little leisure he was to be found nights on the Miami, fire-hunting for deer for he was a famous Nimrod and loved the sport. More than once the venison he served his guests was of his own killing.

To show some of the queer real estate transactions which took place early in Troy, I will give a deal of Overfield's as a sample. The tavern keeper bargained with Cornelius Westfall for Lot No. 2, which was on the corner of Water and Mulberry Streets. The price was $95, which Landlord Overfield agreed to pay on or before a certain date. He secured the note by a mortgage on the premises and 150 bushels of corn, one barrel of whiskey, one mare and colt, seventy-eight hogs, one cow and calf, one yearling bull, three beds and bed clothes, four bedsteads, two tables, one chest, one spinning-wheel, one corner cupboard, ten split-bottom chairs, three kettles, two Dutch ovens, one tea kettle, one pot, one frying pan and all the queensware and glass furniture - surely enough to cover the $95 note. Whether business became poor or whether he found himself in financial straits I do not know; Landlord Overfield failed to "come to time" and indulgence was granted him on his appeal and the note and mortgage were at last satisfied.

Another early settler of Troy was William Barbee, commonly known as "Billy." He had been a volunteer under George Rogers Clark and during the expedition against the Indians at Piqua he had seen much of the region where he afterward settled. Barbee was a man of good parts, honest and industrious, and afterward held several, offices of honor and trust in the county. He bought a lot on Market Street for sixty-five dollars.. He became soon after a landowner, for he Married a young lady who owned eighty acres of good land while he owned about as much. He embarked in the blacksmith trade and shod many horse during the War of 1812. There was a good deal of money in blacksmithing just at this time and Barbee kept everlastingly at it. He went into the dry-goods business, but found it a losing venture when the sheriff seized on the stock. This failure, however, did not discourage Barbee. He began to buy cattle, which he drove to Chicago and with considerable profit. In course of time lie amassed a good deal of money and he is said to have been worth a quarter of a million at the time of his death. Barbee was whole-souled and generous to a fault and no alms seeker ever turned from his door unsatisfied.

Another early citizen of Troy was "Squire" Brown, who crossed the river from Staunton and opened a saddlery. He was a good saddler and in his shop he dispensed law as a justice of the peace. He was one of the first postmasters of Troy. Brown took several apprentices who afterward became prominent citizens. Henry Culbertson was one of these, and Isaac Peck another. Nearly every person, who resided in Troy at this time had a trade. There were shops of every description and stores were springing up on every street.

Joseph Culbertson had come to Troy in 1808. He was a poor boy, but he brought to Troy a trade which flourished from the first. He was a hatter and it was not long till Culbertson's hats found a ready market beyond the confines of the town. At the corner of Water and Clay Streets a plain frame house was occupied by William Brown, who started a carpenter shop in conjunction with John Wallace. Wallace was fond of his toddy and lost out in his intercourse with it, but his partner Brown, who was more abstemious, became a prominent citizen and at one time filled the office of County Treasurer.

Among the first doctors in Troy was DeJoncourt. He was of French extraction and had his office on the corner opposite the Wallace and Brown carpenter shop. DeJoncourt lanced and "pilled" his patients for some years and gave place to some other disciple of Hippocrates. Doctors were few and far between those days and when they became established in a community they did a good business, for chills and fever prevailed during certain seasons and "bloodletting" was considered necessary.

It was not until 1815 that the people of Troy had a house of worship. Mr. Gahagan donated a lot on the west corner of Main and Clay Streets and soon a log church arose on the site. It was a church edifice renowned for its simplicity. No organ pealed forth its sonorous tones, no frescoes adorned the rough walls, no chimes called the people to worship and cushioned pews and paid choirs were unknown. In this first Methodist Church at the county seat worship was conducted for some years, or until Troy had so increased in wealth and population as to demand a larger and better house of worship.

A frame building known as the Clerk's Office was located where the Grunder store now stands. It was a double frame affair, office in front and kitchen in the rear. Later on this official building gave way for a brick affair 12xl5 feet square between Mulberry and Walnut. It, small as it was, held about all the offices connected with the town. Cornelius Westfall, who was clerk, had a monopoly on all other offices, for he was town director and master commissioner in chancery, besides taking care of the post office. There is no record showing that Mr. Westfall was not capable of filling a few more offices if they had been thrown in his way. In office holding he was certainly a "Jack-of-all-trades."

In 1830 Joseph Skinner built a large brick house on the southeast corner of Main and Plum Streets. The south end of the building was constructed for a jail with heavy brick walls and sills of black walnut. The following sheriffs occupied this building: John Shidler, T.W. Furnas, Joseph Defrees, Stephen Johnston. Joseph Pearson was the first sheriff to occupy the present sheriff's residence.

During the first several decades of Troy's existence there was little to mar the even tenor of its way. In 1842 occurred the famous "Broadford War" or the "Battle of the Broadford" as it was facetiously called. The late Stephen Johnston of Piqua was sheriff at the time, and Hon. Thomas Corwin looked after the welfare of the State of Ohio from the executive's chair at Columbus. The "war" originated in this wise:

Several Troyans, whose names have been lost from the records of fame, conceived the idea of weaning men from the wine cup by preaching a temperance crusade among the rural townships. They may have been good conscientious citizens, but they soon discovered that the ruralites did not need regeneration at that particular time. At several of these temperance meetings the speakers were assailed with all sorts of missiles, especially stale eggs, and this so roused their indignation that they swore out warrants against the offenders, who were arrested and lodged in the old brick jail at Troy.

It was thought for a while that this would end the affair, but soon the mutterings of a storm reached the county seat. The people of the country were rising in their might and it came to be known that mobs were collecting for the purpose of storming the jail and releasing the prisoners. The utmost excitement prevailed in Troy. Sheriff Johnston saw his habitation a heap of ruins and himself probably swinging from a convenient pole and he set about to counteract the revolutionists and maintain the peace and dignity of the county. He promptly called out the Militia to help him as a Posse Comitatus to preserve peace, especially in Troy. Forthwith there was a gathering of the clans of war and all peaceful pursuits were for the time being abandoned. Captain Adams and Lieutenant Carson put their company of light infantry in motion and Col. Clarke and Captain E.Y. Barney appeared at the head of their dragoons. Piqua, throwing aside her jealousies for a moment, came, to help her sister town. The Piqua squadrons were met by the citizens of Troy and the Lafayette Blues, commanded by Captain Mayo.

At any moment the mob might enter Troy and leave wreck and ruin in its track. Those who had gone to the "seat of war" had left weeping families at home and it was expected that blood would flow in profusion in the streets of Troy. At length some wily strategist who had probably studied the Napoleonic campaigns proposed that the militia take up a position at the Broadford Bridge, where the mob could be intercepted and the battle fought outside the walls of Troy. This proposition was received with delight and forthwith the legions were marched to the Broadford, where they encamped.

Here for two days and nights the utmost vigilance was exercised. Rumor followed rumor thick and fast. The revolutionists, it was asserted, were not far away. Scouts were sent into the woods and the pickets were doubled. The brave militia slept on their arms, some dreaming of the homes they never expected to see again. At last it dawned on the minds on the Miami Spartans that the foe was not coming. Perhaps they had overawed him with their formidable preparations for his reception and at last the recall was sounded and the Broadford army broke camp and marched back to Troy. It presented a splendid appearance and doubtless

"Twere worth ten years of peaceful life One glance at their array."

As the valiant soldiers returned to the bosoms of their families from the bloodless campaign they could exclaim triumphantly

"We routed them, we scouted them! Nor lost a single man."

Such was the "Broadford War," for a long time celebrated in the annals of the county, and many believed that Sheriff Johnston's promptness not only saved the county buildings but probably prevented the streets of Troy from being deluged in blood.

The coming of the canal and the railroad to Troy were events of supreme importance to it. The former was finished to the town in 1837 and at once there was great rejoicing. The county seat was thus placed in touch with the outside world and Troy markets were greatly benefited. About this time produce in Troy was commanding the following prices: Flour, per barrel $2.62; wheat, 37 1/2 cents; bacon, per pound 31/2 cents; chickens, per dozen 50 cents; eggs, 3 cents; butter, 61/4 cents; sugar, 61/4 cents; tallow, 61/4 cents. The finishing of the canal permitted the shipping of all kinds of farm produce from Troy and the farmer took advantage of it. In fact the canal was found inadequate for the shipping of grain and the railroad was acknowledged to be the only salvation for the town. In 1850 the first train on the C.H.& D. ran from Dayton to Troy. It was a day long to be remembered by all who inhabited the town and the surrounding country. A large crowd came to "see the fun" as they expressed it, but it was a different kind of fun from what they expected.

The cars were old flat ones with railing around the sides to keep the people from falling off. The crowd that came from Dayton was composed of a rough set of men. They had imbibed pretty freely before leaving the Gem City and by the time the train reached Troy they were ready for anything and some were spoiling for a fight. They went over town in a boisterous manner and made themselves obnoxious to everybody. By the time they were ready to start back to Dayton they were picking up stones and throwing them at the cars. When finally they got on board they began throwing stones into the crowd composed of men, women and children who had come down to the track to see them off. This caused a stampede on a part of the lookers-on, but the men in the crowd returned the volley of stones with interest and things looked serious for a time. At last the whistle blew and the cars pushed away from the indignant Troyans. Such was the exciting scenes attendant upon the arrival and departure of the first steam cars that entered Troy.

The opening of the canal was also attended with more or less excitement. Soon after the water was let into the long basin a party of Troy people hired a packet and took a ride down the canal to where it crossed the river about half way between Troy and Dayton. A Mr. Crumpacker steered the boat and as it was entering the lock he steered it into a waste-way and was compelled to back out again. The occupants on the boat became frightened, thinking they were going over the wasteway. There was much excitement on board and no little screaming on the part of the women passengers; but finally the boat was righted and taken safely through the lock. At that time there was but one house in Tippecanoe and it was owned by John Clark, who was proprietor of nearly all the land in sight.

Troy was visited by a cholera scourge about 1850. The dread disease also visited other parts of the county and the death rate rose rapidly. The whole town was in a state of alarm, for no one knew when he might be attacked and it was some time before the epidemic was stayed and the inhabitants got relief.

The first Court of Common Pleas held its November session up stairs at Mr. Overfield's, commencing November 5th, 1808. Troy was then a small place and had recently been made the county seat. There were as yet no newspapers in the town. As has been mentioned, Overfield kept tavern and his establishment contained a bar, as did all the taverns at that early day. The late John T. Tullis, one of the pioneer residents of Troy, in his interesting reminiscences has this to say of the time of which we write: "

There was sometimes a little friction in running a court and bar-room as near neighbors, but Judge Dunlavy was prompt and allowed no annoyance. On one occasion, George Kerr, a wealthy farmer of good repute and ex-Governor Arthur St.Clair were discussing the quality of Mr. Overfield's beverage, when, getting much interested, they raised their voices an octave above the key note. The Judge sent his respects to the gentlemen by Mr. Dye, requesting an interview in the court room. When they came in the Judge said: 'Gentlemen, the court assesses a fine of two dollars each for contempt. Mr. Kerr replied: `It bears me in mind, that you might as well say ten.' `Well I say ten,' the Judge answered, turning to his associate on the bench, 'What do you say, Mr. Barbee?' `I say ten for Mr. Kerr' said Judge Barbee, `and ten for the Governor.' They put down the dust and Mr. Kerr, being a little excited, retorted: `Judge Dunlavy, I knew you when you were so poor you had to lie in bed until your wife washed your breeches.' Though it was very convenient to have the court so near a watering place where there was plenty of good liquor, yet it was not always held there, but in the early days of the county it was held wherever the judges happened to be."

For a time the courtroom at Troy was occupied by the Presbyterians for religious purposes; the same building was not very secure. Joseph Beedle and some of his friends were incarcerated for a few days for uncovering Jimmy Mackey's ---house and happening to want water, he slipped a log, a part of the floor between the two stories, and went up, bucket in hand, to the well to fill his bucket. Before the family could give the alarm he made his ingress through the same aperture through which lie had made his ingress. This feat admonished the county functionaries that the jail was not a safe deposit; so Joseph Skinner was set to work about 1828-30 (the date is uncertain) to build a strong jail and a two-story brick house for the jailer on the same lot, which answered a good purpose until the new stone jail was built.

Merchandizing in Troy about 1828 was yet in its infancy. The only newspaper then published at the county seat was the Miami Report, published by the Micaiah Fairfield. Among the Troy merchants at this period were Mayo & Bosson, and William Barbee. Barbee had the largest establishment and consequently the best trade. He was a good patron of the advertising columns of the Reporter. He made annual trips to New York to select his stock and upon his return he always announced his selection for the benefit of the public. Some of the goods sold in the stores at that time have long since gone out of date, as the following inventory of Mr. Barbee's stock will show: "Superfine Blue steel mixed cloths, satinets, bang-up cord, Rowen Cashmere; black lasting, domestic plaids and stripes, Ticking, checks, Sheeting and skirting, cambric, Jackonet, books, hair-cord, Jubilee muslin, calico; Gingham, crape robes, satin Levantine, blue and black Gros de Nap; linen and cotton laces, silk valencia and Swandown Ve stings, Leghorn and straw bonnets, Prunella and Morocco shoes, silk and cotton shawls and handkerchiefs," etc., etc. The stores also kept groceries, hardware and liquors.

At this time T.W. Furnas was sheriff of the county and Daniel Grosvenor, auditor. It was at the time when the famous Jackson-Adams campaign was at its height and Troy was a center for the foment. Some of her citizens headed by John Wiley and Dr.Asa Coleman met at the house of Col. Humbert in Troy, on October 11, 1829, and organized what might be called a vigilance committee in the interest of John Quincy Adams. They issued a proclamation addressed to the "Friends of Order and Good Government," in which they called upon every friend of Adams to exert himself for their candidate. "Do, then," the call said, "for the sake of that liberty which you now enjoy and which you will be glad to leave as the most valuable legacy to your children, turn out on the day of election and secure it while it is yet in your power. A little negligence on your part may prove fatal to liberty with all its concomitant blessings." The committee on the part of Concord Township, including Troy, consisted of John G. Telford, William I. Thomas, Thomas Barbour, William Tullis, David Tullis, Daniel Grosvenor, Lewis Humbert, James Knight and Asa Coleman. In this year Concord gave a large majority for Allen Trumble for Governor of Ohio.

It would seem that some of the citizens of Troy as early as 1828, had to put up with a good many trifling employees. It was the day of apprenticeship and when the young apprentices did not find things to their liking they "stayed not upon the order of their going," but took leg bail and made themselves scarce. Henry W. Culbertson, who was a saddler at the time, advertised for one of his runaway hands in the following amusing manner:


Ran away from the subscriber an indented apprentice to the saddling business by the name of James Gibbs, said boy about 15 years old, dark complexion, has large black eyes and black hair, very talkative and a most intolerable liar. Whoever will return said boy to me in Troy, Miami County, shall receive the above reward, "but no thanks. H.W. CULBERTSON."

The result of this advertisement, if any, is not on record, but it is not likely that the subscriber was ever called upon to pay the liberal reward offered.

From the reminiscences of Charles N. Burns I call the following data concerning the appearance of the County Seat about the year 1853:

"The schoolhouse was new, as was also the Morris House (now Hotel Troy). Everything else was or seemed to be old. West Main Street beyond Elm, was in the future and the "plank road" began near that point. Main Street east of the railroad had but few houses, Market Street south of the canal soon become a country road, and excepting at Main and Market, I think there were but two other bridges crossing the canal at Union (the Dayton Road) and the Lover's, beginning at the corner of Oxford and Franklin and running on to between George Streets and the Hafer grocery and meeting the McKaig Avenue, then a lane.

The mill at the lock on Main Street was owned and run by Hanson Mayo. The entire square west of the school house was vacant `commons'. At the corner of Water and Oxford were Stockton's carriage and smith shops. The Galt House (now Masonic Temple) was then as now, except the frame addition on the west. `Lawyer's Row' was then one office used by Judge Pearson. `The Railroad House,' George Simmons, proprietor, was a two story brick where Steil's Store is now, on the north corner of Main and Public Square. Old frame shells occupied space bordering the square on Market Street, both sides except the Morris House; south of the Square were also frame shells. Franklin Street ended at Union. East of that and south of the canal was `country' and west of the canal `swamp'. There were very few stone walks in town and those in front of the stores principally. Mr. Edwards started the planting of trees on the walks.

"Little Henry" Culbertson was the principal dry goods man and Evans & Elliott kept a dry goods store in the corner of the Galt House. Joe Youart kept a dry goods store where the Troy National Bank is now and on a big sign in front were painted in large letters these words: `Joe Youart, Family Grocery, Loafers Retreat' Politics, Religion and the Fine Arts discussed at all hours.

"The town was dark at night except when the moon shone. There were neither gas nor oil lamps. In fact, I believe, that most of the people used either tallow candles, lard oil or camphene in their houses. There was no manufactory in Troy then except a shop or two for making plows, wagons and buggies for the local trade, and I believe a flax mill above the dam."

In later years John Kelly of Troy invented the first corn planter and put it on the market. This was about 1875.

The municipal government of Troy dates from among the early days of it's existence. It is to be regretted that no list of its mayors prior to 1840 is obtainable. Since that time to the recent the list of mayors is as follows: William B. Johnson, George D. Burgess, Joseph Pearson, Henry S. Mayo, S.L. Bayless, Harvey G. Sellers S., O. Binkley, Charles Morris, John T. Somerville, H.W. Culbertson, H.J. Pettit, W.P. Ross, N.C. Clyde, W.D. Ilughes, M.W. Hayes, James Knight, G.T. Thomas, George S. Long, J.F. McCaskey, M.K. Gantz, T.M. Campbell, A.L. McKinney, John W. Morris, J.O. Davis, Thomas B. Kyle.

Troy was the first place in the county to inaugurate a good system of public schools. The population of Concord Township in 1804 consisted of but three families. Samuel Kyle taught the first school in Troy in 1813. The log schoolhouse occupied the corner of Market and Water Streets. He rarely had more than twelve pupils and the schoolhouse and its surroundings were quite primitive. John G. Clarke presided over the Troy public schools in 1816 and he had a unique way of reaching the hearts, to say nothing of the brains of his scholars. Clarke did not live in local option days, so he gave his pupils whiskey, diluted with sugar and water, and occasionally he had some laughable experiences with his classes. In 1826 Micajah Fairfield taught in Troy, then Uriah Fordyce, Miss Mary Barney, George D. Burgess, afterward judge of the Court of Common Pleas; Robert McCurdy, and Irving Giles. Some of the other early school masters of Troy were B.F. Powers, G.A. Murray, E.P. Coles, Minor W. Fairfield. The first board of education consisted of Charles Morris, Rev. Daniel Rice, B.F. Powers, William B. Johnson, Zachariah Riley and Henry S. Mayo. Salaries were small in the early days of Troy's school system. The first roster of her public educators received the following yearly pay: N.W. Edwards $800, Jonathan Arnott $400, Arnold Finner $400, Miss Susan Linn $300, Miss Catherine Gaylor $225, Frances Rice $225, Miss Louise Thorne $200, Miss Bishoprick $200. In course of time the first public school buildings gave way for better ones; as the school population increased others still more costly and commodious were erected and these supply the city's educational wants at the present day. The public schools of Troy will be treated more at length in the Educational Chapter.

The churches of the County Seat, to be mentioned more at length hereafter, have kept pace with the needs of the hour, having developed from the primitive tabernacle into the splendid religious edifices that house her present day worshippers. The Methodist Church of Troy was organized in 1815, the Episcopalian in 1831, the Christian in 1856, the Presbyterian in 1818, the German Lutheran in 1841, the Baptist in 1834. All these churches are an honor to the various denominations. The Catholic Church came long after the others, but it is today one of the most progressive churches in the city.

From the time of Cornelius Westfall, the first postmaster of Troy, the mail services of the county seat has shown rapid progression. In early days this service was slow and laborious, but the postal needs of the people were not great. One post office building has followed another until now the service is well housed in the Odd Fellows' Temple. There have been no defalcations in the Troy post office; the postmasters have been faithful and diligent and worthy of the important trusts imposed upon them. It is a matter of interest that John W. Morris still treasures a government draft for one penny, which was sent him when he presented his final accounting as postmaster. Following is a complete list of the postmasters of Troy: Cornelius Westfall, W.I.Thomas, John G. Telford, Levi Hart, John T. Tullis, Joseph Pearson, Henry J. Pettit, John Block, Robert M. Barbour, Thomas B. Rose, George W. Bull, Samuel McKee, Harriet E. Drury, John H. Drury, Frank M. Sterrett, John W. Morris, N.C. Clyde, J.W. Davis, S.D. Frank, Walter M. Kyle, Elva A. Jackson.

The present roster of the post office, which is one of the best conducted in the state, is as follows: Postmaster - E. A. Jackson; Clerks- T.J. Gibbs, R.H. Widiier, George W. Humphreys, J.C. Fullerton, W.J. Kingham, Miss Ella Warner; City carriers-Harry G. Hollis No.1; J.W. Robbins No.2; Noah A. Ellet No.3; Benjamin F. Robbins No.4; Arthur May No.5; Rural carriers -James C. Stratton No.1; Charles E. Buckels No.2; Calvin Kerns No. 3; Elijah E. Moore No. 4; Harry H. Stewart No.5; Edmund S. Whitmore No. 6; Charles W. Penrod No. 7.

The city government, at the head of which is Mayor Thomas Barton Kyle, has the following efficient roster: President of council- J.B. McCoole; auditor-Charles Rannells; treasurer- John K. DeFrees; solicitor- T.M. Campbell; members of council- C.W. Douglas, C.G. Snook, S.D. Frank, John Laufer, C.H. Kramer, George Braunschweiger, Clarence J. Marr; Board of Public Service-John M. McLain, R.H. Southerland Jr., A.E. Childs; Board of Public Safety- L.H. McConnell, Al.K. Gantz; Board of Review- John Henne, William Stephey, C.L. Yost; Trustees of Sinking Fund and Board of Tax Commissioners- W.E. Boyer, John Hall, D.W. Smith, C.L. Yost; Board of Education- T.B. Kyle, A.F. Broomliall, W.E. Boyer, R.W. Crofoot, Horace Allen, E.W. Maier; Chief of Police- John Headly; Chief of Fire Department- Amos Hetzler; City engineer-H.J. Walker. The Board of Health is in the hands of the Board of Public Service and the Public Library is controlled by the Board of Education.

It is the intention to treat the newspapers, the banks, parochial schools and other institutions of the City of Troy under separate headings, to which the reader is referred.

On the 16th of June, 1885, the corner stone of the magnificent new court house which graces one of the squares of Troy was laid with appropriate ceremonies. The erection of this Temple of Justice forever put an end to the "County Seat War" which originated almost a century ago.

With blare of brass bands, march of military and civic orders, profuse decorations of bunting and National colors, and display of fireworks, the 16th of July 1885, passed into history and marked a memorable day in the annals of Miami County.

There was laid with impressive ceremonies, and amidst a scene never before witnessed in this part of Ohio, the corner stone of a magnificent new court house, which will mark the progress and development of the Twelfth County in Ohio, and stand for the next century as a monument to the intelligence and public spirit of the taxpayers of today. The generations who come after us will praise the wisdom which selected so beautiful a site for the county's capitol, and builded upon it an edifice in harmony with the population, wealth and intelligence of Miami County in 1885. Those who were active to secure the new courthouse will soon pass away; those instrumental in its location will die and be forgotten, but the beautiful building will stand for ages, and a county with a population of a hundred thousand, with a tax duplicate of more than a hundred million, will transact its official business in the building erected in 1885.

The day was all that could have been expected as to weather in mid- summer, and as pleasant as could have been wished for. A delightful and much needed rain the night before put the streets in splendid condition, and cleared the atmosphere. The sun appeared brightly Thursday morning as though the Ruler of the Universe were smiling upon the consummation of a glorious project. By afternoon it grew warm, decidedly warm, but all during the day there was a delightful air, and much of the time a refreshing breeze. The crowd began to come early. Before nine o'clock the side streets were full of vehicles, and the walks filled with happy, joyous faces.

The escort committee from the Grand Army of the Republic, Knights Templars, Uniform Rank Knights of Pythias, and Odd Fellows, headed by the G.A.R. Band, marched to the I.B. and W. Railway to meet the delegations from Hollingsburg, Greenville, Union City Arcanum and other western points, several car loads of humanity being unloaded at this place.

The northbound C.H.& D. train brought the Tipp Fire Department in uniform, visiting delegations from Tipp, Dayton, Miamisburg and Hamilton; the southbound train brought the Piqua division Uniform Rank Knights of Pythias with Band, the Sidney and Kirkwood bands and a large crowd of people, and the noon train on the I.B. & W. unloaded the greater portion of the inhabitants of the eastern part of the county, and most of Clark living in the neighborhood of New Carlisle.

Champaign County from the neighborhood of Addison was here in force and the G.A.R. Post of that town brought along their large flag, which was suspended across Main Street.

The procession formed at about 1:30 o'clock and moved in the line announced by program, through the principal streets and entered the court house enclosure at the west entrance. A platform had been erected at the northeast corner of the building and this was occupied by prominent Masons and members of the press.

The procession was admitted to have been one of the finest ever witnessed in this part of Ohio. The ceremonies preparatory to performing the act of formally laying the corner stone began with music. Following this Rev. Mr. VanCleve made a short but impressive prayer. The grand treasurer, Jos. Bains, then placed the copper box filled with articles in the mortice of the corner stone, and the ceremony of " leveling.. plumbing and " squaring," sprinkling upon it wheat, wine and oil was conducted by Right Worshipful Grand Master J.M. Goodspeed.

The orator of the day was the late Captain Elihu S. Williams, who delivered an oration replete with eloquence and historical data, which evinced a vast amount of research. In summing up the history of the county Captain Williams closed with the following peroration:

"In 1807 Miami County had but little over one thousand inhabitants. Today she has forty thousand.

In 1807 she cast 208 votes; today she can cast 10,000 votes, and her property returned for taxation reaches in round numbers twenty-four millions of dollars.

We have a Nation of fifty-five millions of people and we hold within the limits of our vast domain the line of perpetual snow and the home of perpetual summer.

We stand in the front rank among the nations of the earth in wealth and power, and around our magnificent heritage of land and sea is drawn the sacred circle of liberty which the demon of slavery will never dare to cross.

I thank God that I am an American citizen, a resident of Ohio, and that I live in Miami County, a county in which no home is out of sight of a school house nor out of hearing of a church bell. Her farmers stand among the first of the state in wealth and intelligence. Her merchants stand high in integrity and honesty. Her clergy are noted for their pure lives and zeal in the cause of their Lord and Master. Her courts stand among the first for judicial knowledge and legal ability. Her lawyers do not hesitate to enter the legal arena and throw down the glove of challenge to the first and foremost of the State.

Then let this court house be built upon the foundation the corner stone of which we this day plant and let it rise in its architectural beauty as a sign and a symbol that the protecting arm of the law is around every home, and that justice like the sun shine and the rain of Heaven falls alike upon the rich and the poor, without regard to race or color. No man is too high for its reach and no man is too low for its grasp. A shield of protection for the innocent and a swift, strong arm of punishment for the guilty."

This splendid building dedicated to justice cost $400,000 and is one of the most imposing court houses in 'the United States. It is massive in structure and houses all the county offices. That it will long stand as a monument to the progress made by the county during the first hundred years of its existence goes without saying.

The Troy Masonic Temple Company was incorporated July 31, 1906. Its capital stock is $40,000 divided into sixteen hundred shares of twenty-five dollars each. The Temple was completed in 1908 and dedicated with imposing ceremonies December 29, of the same year. The structure is one of the finest in the state dedicated to fraternal purposes. The Temple Company is officered as follows: E.M. Faulkner, president, H.A. Cosley, secretary, F.W. Steil, treasurer. The directors are H.A. Cosley, E.M. Faulkner, C.A. Hartley, T.B. Kyle, L.H. McConnell, F.W. Steil and Walter Duer.

--- End chapter 8 ---
Harbaugh's 1909 History of Miami County Ohio

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