Aldrich History Project

Chapter XXVIII

History of Bradford Township

The pioneer and early history of this township, or the territory that originally was part of the old township of Chincleclamousche, but was in the year 1807 erected into Bradford township, antedates its organization by only a very few years; in fact, at the time that separate organization was made there was a population in the whole county not to exceed eight hundred persons, both old and young.

At the time the first efforts were made looking to the subdivision of the county (for at that time Chincleclamousche township embraced the whole county), it was, for judicial and nearly all other purposes, attached to Centre county, and the application was made at a term of the Quarter Sessions Court, held in the month of January, of the year 1807, upon the petition of the inhabitants of Clearfield county, praying for the erection of two new townships. The court, as required by law, appointed John Dunlap, William W. Feltwell and Thomas Burnside, viewers to examine into the matter and make report upon the advisability of the division prayed for.

At the August Sessions, held during the same year, the viewers reported upon two new townships, one to be called Bradford, so named in honor of Surveyor-General William Bradford, of Pennsylvania, and the other to be called Beccaria, in honor of the distinguished philosopher, Marquis De Beccaria but why so named in his honor no reliable information is obtainable.

The boundaries of Bradford township, as laid out on the report of the viewers , were as follows: beginning at the head of Moshannon Creek, thence down the same to the mouth thereof; thence up the Susquehanna River to the mouth of Clearfield Creek; thence up Clearfield Creek to the mouth of Muddy Run; thence up the Muddy Run to the head of the east branch thereof; thence a straight line to the head of Moshannon Creek, the place of beginning. The straight line referred to in the latter part of the description is the present boundary north of Cambria and south of Clearfield county. It will be seen that from the description of the boundaries of Bradford, the township was exceedingly large, and that its territorial limits have been curtailed and reduced by the subsequent formation of no less than nine separate townships. To be sure, some of the more recently organized were but subdivisions of the older townships, yet the territory originally included within Bradford now forms the nine municipalities as above stated. The first reduction was made in the year 1828, when Decatur was set off. This was followed in 1835, by the erection of Morris. Boggs came third, in the year 1838, Graham in 1856, and Cooper in 1884. The history of each of which said several townships will be found written in their proper place in this work.

In the month of February, 1852, the Court of Quarter Sessions confirmed the report of A. K. Wright, D. W. Moore, and James B. Graham, by which certain lands then belonging to John Duncan and John Hanna were set off from Bradford and annexed to Lawrence township.

That portion of Bradford that is left after the several reductions of its territory, is situate on the south side of the West Branch River and the northern townships of Goshen and Girard. Graham township forms the east, Boggs the south and Lawrence the west boundary. The course of the West Branch on the northern side of the township is exceedingly tortuous and winding, forming no less than eight sharp bends at various points in passing the short distance of about eight or ten miles, by direct route or air line. Clearfield Creek passes on the west side, just touching the township and dividing it at that point from Lawrence. The largest stream lying of having its course within the township is Roaring Run, which drains the whole souther and southwest portion, and has as tributaries several rivulets, names respectively: Fork Valley Run and Forcey's Run, on the north, and Jake's Run of the south. Roaring Run is tributary to Clearfield Creek and Clearfield Creek to the Susquehanna River. The other streams, each of which discharge their waters directly into the river are, Abe's Run, Devil's Run, Millstone Run, Bear Run and Moravian Run, the latter, however, courses only a short distance through the township on the extreme east side, but lies mainly in Graham township. Graffius's Run is a tributary of Moravian Run.

It will be remembered that long before the first settlers ventured into this country, and during the Indian occupation, a party of Moravian missionaries, on their journey to the region of the Ohio River, made a halt on this stream and buried one of their number, a child, who had died during their passage across the Allegheny Mountains. From this fact the stream was ever after known as Moravian Run. The exact route taken by this party of pilgrims across the township, or the precise spot at which the interment was made, cannot now be definitely fixed, but as they followed the general course of the river, the fair presumption arises that the route took them across the northern portion.

The surface of the land generally throughout the entire township is very hilly but not mountainous, although in some portions there are level and fertile areas well adapted to agriculture. From this it cannot be assumed that the hill lands are wholly unproductive, as some of the best producing lands are among those classed as "hill farms."

The population of the township as originally laid out could not at that time have exceeded one hundred and seventy-five persons. An enumeration of the taxable inhabitants made by the assessor, Thomas Winters, for the year 1809, showed the entire number of taxables as follows: Robert Anderson, Robert Beers, John Crowell, Jebish Darling, John Darling, John Darling, jr., Valentine Flegal, Abraham Goss, Betty Goss, Samuel Green, Devolt Hess, Abraham Hess, Adrew [sic} Kephart, George Kephart, Henry Kephart, Conrad Kyler, Leonard Kyler, John Kyler, Abraham Leonard, David Litz, Absalom Pierce, Philip Benson,Nicholas Smell, Benjamin Smell, George Shimmel, John Vanal, Thomas Winters, John Weld, Jacob Wise, John Wiser, George Wilson, Peter Young and John Bagley. There were also three single freeman, viz.: Rudolph List, George Kephart and John Shimmel. At that time there was neither saw-mill nor grist-mill in the entire township.

The roll for the succeeding year, 1810, shows no increase and but one or two removals, but as an evidence of stimulated manufacturing growth, or perhaps as it might be more aptly stated, the growth of manufactured stimulants. George Shimmel and Peer Young were each assessed as having a "still-house."

In the year 1812 an enumeration of taxables was made by Absolom Pierce, assessor, and a slight decrease shown, there appearing of the roll only thirty two names, two of whom were single freeman. Some of the names on the first roll had disappeared and a few new ones replaced them. These new comers were William Alexander, Elizabeth Fathers, Jacob Hoover and Samuel Turner. The still-house of Peter Young seems to have disappeared, but that of George Shimmel remained, having acquired the more dignified title of "distillery."

Many whose names appeared on the several rolls above mentioned resided in that part of Bradford which was subsequently erected into the townships of Decatur, Morris and Boggs, so that a mention of them more in detail should be found in the several chapters relating to those townships.

Among the early settlers of that remnant of the original township was the family of Robert Ross, formerly of Huntingdon county, who came about the time of or before the War of 1812. They located on the river above the mouth of Trout Run. William, George, Robert, Elsie, Lavina, and Susan Ross were children of the pioneer Robert. This family became prominent in the county, and many descendants are still living in various localities and townships.

The Forcey family, the pioneer being Matthew, came to Bradford from old Chincleclamousche township, having settled south of Clearfield town in the year 1804, and in Bradford about 1813 or '14. They were a large family and progressive. Thomas H. Forcey,president of the County National Bank of Clearfield, is a descendant from this stock, and has owned a very large amount of land in Bradford from time to time.

Robert Graham emigrated from Ireland to this country about the close of the last century and settled in Huntingdon county. In 1802 the family came to Clearfield county and located in Lawrence township, where they lived until 1811. They then went to Bradford where the pioneer, Robert, died in 1855. He was buried in the old Ross grave-yard opposite the mouth of Surveyor's Run. It was customary in these early times to give nearly every family some distinguishing nick-name, and this family of Grahams were called "Grimes," a name that followed them for many years and was supposed by new settlers to be their correct surname.

Jacob Hoover was the head of a large family of that name, who were among the pioneers of Bradford, living in the eastern part of the township not far from the site of Grahamton. The name Hoover is well represented throughout the county.

There were also two heads of families both named Samuel Turner, one of whom came to Bradford about the time of the War of 1812. This is the Turner referred to in the old assessment roll above mentioned. The other Samuel Turner came to this country from Ireland, about the year 1809, but did not settle in this county until 1824, at which time he located at Grahamton, or the place afterward so named, and about thirty years before Graham township was erected.

The Hurd family lived, at a very early day, in the eastern part of the township. After his death, John Dale lived on the same place. Dale was a hatmaker and worked at Philipsburg as well as Bradford. Several descendants of the Dale family are still living.

John Kyler located about the same time between the towns now known as Wallaceton and Bigler, on the old Susquehanna pike. The Kylers are now numerous in the eastern part of the county, and some have been very active in county and local affairs.

Absalom Pierce was assessor of Bradford township in the 1812, therefore was one of its pioneers. He lived near John Kyler's about where Bigler station is located.

John Woolridge was born in England and came to this country in the year 1819. He located on lands on the Clearfield road about two an one-half miles from Woodland village. His children were William, John, Edward, and Sarah, all of whom are still living. Edward is now in Minnesota, William on the old homestead, John in the north part of Bradford, and Sarah in Clearfield borough, the wife of Isaac Johnson, boot and shoe merchant.

The family of John Shirey came to the township about the same time and settled on lands in the Graham neighborhood. The descendants of John still live on the old farm.

Adam Myers, a colored man, lived in the Graham quarter. He had no children except by adoption.

Richard Shaw, a pioneer of the Mount Joy ridges, in the north part of Lawerence, moved into Bradford on lands about a mile from the river. The family afterward came to Clearfield town.

David Wilson was another of the early settlers in the Graham neighborhood, and owned a far adjoining Graham's. Wilson was twice married and had quite a large family, but few of the children are now living in the township.

Archie Campbell also came to Bradford at an early day. He was a native of Ireland, and quite an old man when he made a settlement in the township. He died after a few years' residence there, and was buried in the old Ross grave-yard.

John Stewart lived on the river, about half a mile from Graham. Dr. Stewart, of Clearfield borough, is a grandson of this pioneer.

The older residents will remember among the pioneer names that of Caesar Potter, the colored settler, who lived with his wife and family a couple of miles from Mill Stone Run, near the centre of the township, on the north side. Some of the family died there, and the others long since moved away.

Among the other old families of Bradford were the Graffiuses, who to-day are numerous there; the Mayhews, who moved in from the opposite side of the creek; the Burges,of which family Adam Burge was the head, and the Dixons, who lived near the Grahams.

After 1820 the lands then comprising Bradford township were taken up very rapidly, the larger streams along its borders, the Susquehanna on the north, the Moshannon on the east, and Clearfield Creek on the west, beside the numerous tributaries to these streams throughout its entire length and breadth made the township a desirable place of residence.

These waters were sufficiently large to navigate rafts of logs and lumber, and became, in after years, and still continue important factors in the lumber interests of the county. As an evidence of this rapid taking up of the timber and farming lands Jacob Hany, the assessor for the year 1825, enrolled over one hundred and thirty land owners in the township, but all were not residents there at that time, This was prior to the division of the territory, which division as a matter of course, reduced the population as well as the area of what had previously been known as Bradford township. The subdivision was made three years later, in 1828, when Decatur was erected. This took from Bradford something more than one-third of its territory, and even Decatur has since been made to surrender its territory to the formation of still younger townships, so that the lands that in 1828 were formed into Decatur are now represented in whole or in part by Decatur, Woodward, Geulich, and Bigler townships. The territory left to Bradford, after this first division, has also been subdivided, and is now represented by the remnant of the township itself and the subsequent formation of Morris, Boggs, Graham, and Cooper. The last township that took territory direct from Bradford was in the erection of Graham, in the year 1856. The succeeding year Jacob Pearce, the assessor of the township, enrolled the taxables thereof, which roll showed seventy-five regular taxable inhabitants and twenty-two single freeman, or an equivalent in population of about three hundred and fifty persons. This shows a strong increase in population in the township after all reductions of territory in the formation of new townships. At the same time the assessor enrolled the militiamen of the township as follows: Henry Graffius, John Graffius, Hamilton Graffius, Joshua Graffius, Neely Green, Enoch Cosgrove, Thomas Luzier, William Dixon, Alexander Livingston, James Lingle, Emanuel Graham, Washington Graham, Samuel P. Wilson, John Stewart, Daniel Stewart, James Lansbury, John Buck, James C. Graham, John Wilson, Eli Soult, George H. Barger, William Wiggins, William Peters, Park Gardner, Willliam Albert, George Albert, Henry Albert, Joseph Yothers, Henry Kyler, John Harrier, John Sheasley, Adam Stoney, Howard Merrill, Levi Pearce, Benjamin Knepp, David Hitchens, John Woolridge, John Ireson, Joseph Shirey, Ludolph Buck, Jacob Graham, Abraham Luzier, George G. Smeal, Henry Smeal, Elijah Smeal, Ellis Smeal, Joel Dixon, James Dixon, jr., John W. Graham, Francis Graham, Absalom P. Barger, Henry Wisor, Jonathan Wisor, jr., Jacob Hess, Luke Kyler, Abraham Pearce, Edmund Albert, John Falls.

There seems to have been, prior to this time, 1856, and even later, a lack of manufacturing industries in Bradford township. The portion which was set off to the formation of Graham had several saw-mills, some of them having been built many years before. The locality of Grahamton was thickly settled, and the manufactories were mainly built there though the enterprise of the Graham family , for whom the town was named. Still there were from time to time several industries in Bradford. Among these was a saw-mill built on Roaring Run, near the present village of Woodland, by James Leonard, and about the year 1825. Another was built about one or two years later by Robert Graham on Mill Stone Run, not far from the river.

Beside the regular manufacture of lumber, this mill produced a large number of arks for river use. A third saw-mill was built by John Stewart, near, or n the upper waters of Mill Stone Run, about the year 1845. Its use was discontinued some years ago.

The present industries appear to be confined to the hamlets of Woodland and Bigler. These, too, undoubtedly owe their existence to the construction of the Tyrone and Clearfield Railroad through the township.

Recently, however, the Beech Creek, Clearfield and South Western Railroad Company laid their tracks through the township, running substantially the same courses, and touching at the same points, Woodland and Bigler, at each of which places both companies have stations. These roads furnish a means of communication directly with the county seat, and also with Philipsburg, the outlet from the county on the east. Of these places Woodland is much the larger, having from four to five hundred population, dependent mainly upon the number of persons employed at the extensive works of the Woodland Fire Brick Company.

While it is a conceded fact that Woodland would have amounted to nothing as a town or village without its railroad advantages, yet the operations of the Fire Brick Company have had much to do with its subsequent progress in point of population at least.

These works, which are known as the "Lower Works," were started in the year 1870, by Albert Brothers, John McMath, and Isaac Reese, and by them operated until the year 1874, at which time an interest was sold to Kessler & Du Bree, of Philipsburg. In 1875, with Hope Fire Brick Company, the whole was consolidated under the name of the Woodland Fire Brick Company, limited.

The Hope Company was started at Woodland in 1872, two years later than the lower works, by Wile and Richard, of Philadelphia, and in 1875 merged in the Woodland Fire Brick Company with the other company above mentioned.

In 1876 a destructive fire occurred at Woodland, by which the town lost several dwellings, two of them being very fine, the Methodist Episcopal Church, the Hope Fire Brick Works, an extensive lumber-mill with about a million feet of manufactured lumber, the property of Albert Brothers, and much other valuable property in the town. The brick works were immediately rebuilt and have since been in successful operation. The present officers of the company are Hepburn Walker, chairman; S. P. Harbison, treasurer; J. S. Showers, secretary. As an evidence of the growth of this industry at Woodland it may be stated that the total annual capacity and output of both works for the year 1872 was 8,000; for 1877, 15,000; 1880, 20,000; 1884, 25,000, and with the present increased facilities for manufacture, and the great demand for the superior quality of brick here made, the company are now producing at the rate of 800,000 per month, or over 9,000,000 annually. There are now regularly employed in the Woodland works about 200 persons.

A new industry is developing at this place, or the town, that is attracting much attention among the coal operators. The firm of Cooke & Brison, of Philipsburg and Bellefonte, have a lease of lands owned by Eli Soult, situated short distance northeast from Woodland depot, from which they are taking a superior quality of coal known as Woodland semi-anthracite, and in the vicinity called the Soult coal. At the present time they are shipping about three cars daily, but arrangements are being completed for the production of a far greater quantity.

The fire clay deposits of Woodland and vicinity are apparently boundless. The Clearfield Fire Brick Company, and the Wallaceton Fire Brick Company, as well, obtain large quantities of their raw material here, which are taken to Clearfield and Wallaceton for manufacture into brick.

The mercantile business interests of Woodland are represented by two large stores -- one owned by Ashley E. Woolridge & Co., and the other by Gingery, Wentzel & Co. The first was established in the year 1879, by Aaron Peters, and he was succeeded, in 1880, by the present firm above mentioned, the members of which are Ashley E. Woolridge, John A. Woolridge, and William A. Woolridge. They have a general stock usual to country stores.

I. V. Gray & Co.'s general merchandise store was established in 1876, the company being D. D. Gingery. In 1880, the firm was changed to D. D. Gingery & Co., the other partners being D. J. Gingery and I. V. Gray. Again in 1886, another change was made, and the present firm of Gingery, Wentzel & Co. was formed.

The other local interests are represented by two blacksmith shops, two shoe shops, one restaurant and two livery stables, the latter managed by Dugan & Blattenberger, and William Varnur, respectively.

For a period of about twenty-five or more years before the fire of 1876 occurred, there stood at Woodland an extensive saw-mill, which, during that conflagration was entirely destroyed together with its product. It was formerly owned by Reuben McPherson. A new mill is in course of erection, owned and to be operated by Zenas Turner. The Woodland Methodist Episcopal Church, which was burned in 1876, was built about the year 1873, from funds raised by general contribution. It was a substantial frame edifice, having a spire one hundred and twelve feet high, the whole costing about four thousand dollars. Among its prominent early members were Henry Albert, Dr. J. A. Bouse, John M. Keton, Daniel Ross, William Wynn, Rev. J. F. Anderson, and other residents of the town and vicinity. Rev. W. W. Reese was formerly pastor of the church.

There is also building at Woodland, opposite the Tyrone and Clearfield depot, a church edifice for the United Brethren Society. The persons prominent in this work are: William Varnur, O. C. Buck, D. D. Gingery, Jesse Stone, C. W. Barger, and others. The church of the United Brethren in Christ, called Bradford Church, was built in the year 1843, on lands about one and one-half miles north from Woodland. It was a log building, lined and boarded, and proved sufficient for the necessities of the society for a period of over forty years. Among the residents of the locality who were prominently connected with the society, and who have descendants yet living in the township, were: Bassel Crowell, Dennis Crowell, Joseph, Isaac, and George Barger, John Soult, John Shirey, William K. Wrigley, George and John Wilson, William Hoover, and William Woolridge.

Southeast from Woodland, and about two miles distant therefrom, on the line of the Tyrone and Clearfield, and also the Beech Creek railroad, there is found a gathering or cluster of about twenty houses and two stores, and known as Bigler, so named in honor of the late governor of the Commonwealth, Hon. William Bigler, deceased, a resident, during his lifetime, of Clearfield borough. Prior to the construction of the Tyrone and Clearfield railroad, this hamlet was called William's Grove, the name being so applied by Edward Williams, a former resident of the lower part of the township, and even to this day the post-office there is called William's Grove. The office there was obtained through the efforts of Hon. John Patton during his first term in Congress. James E. Watson was commissioned the first postmaster, which office he held for some years, when he was succeeded by John Funk. The latter was, in turn, succeeded by Patrick Curley, under a commission from Postmaster-General Jewell, of date December, 1873. Mr. Curley is the present incumbent.

The business interests of Bigler comprise two stores, a lacksmith and a shoemakers shop. Patrick Curley started a grocery, flour, and feed store in the town during the year 1870. The other was started about three years ago by Stephens Brothers, Frank P. and Blair Stephens constituting the firm.

The Bigler Presbyterian Church Society is something like a score of years old, although no established house of worship was provided until about 1870. It is a supply station, under the present ministerial charge of Rev. Koons, of Kylertown. The edifice is a plain but substantial frame building, one story in height, with a spire, and cost about fifteen hundred dollars. The church numbers among its members some of the substantial families of the township, among them S. A. Caldwell, Samuel H. Gill, John L. Pearce, Abraham Pearce, Jacob K. Pearce, John Livingston, Alexander Livingston, John Henry Kyler, Ellis Pearce, and others. Services are held here monthly.

The Dale Methodist Episcopal Church Society of Bradford is among the older of the religious associations of the township, having been organized something like fifty years ago. Up to about the year 1870, the society occupied a log church building, which was located in the Dale neighborhood, and from which its name was given, about two and one-half miles north from Bigler. The new church building stands near the site occupied by the old , and is a substantial frame building. The pulpit is supplied from Woodland, the officiating minister of that charge also supplying the Dale Society. Many of the leading members of this society are residents of Graham township. Among those of the older members who have been prominent in its maintenance from Bradford are the families of John Dale, Matthew Forcey, Elijah McDowell, and John B. Graham.

Of the church societies of Bradford township, that denomination known as the United Brethren, by far outnumbers any other of the several societies of the township, and among them may be found the most substantial families in the vicinity. A camp-meeting ground was laid out and prepared for the first annual meeting, held during the year 1884. These have since been well attended, the number present at the cam service held in 1886, being estimated at fully five thousand persons. The grounds are situate north from the town of Bigler.

The Society of Shiloh Church of the United Brethren is perhaps one of the strongest in the whole township, an by far the most numerous of the societies in the eastern part. Shiloh was organized forty years ago, and until the year 1886 held their services in Shiloh school-house. During this year a commodious church edifice was erected on lands about three hundred yards east of the school-house, on the public road. The building cost about two thousand dollars. Among the older families who have been from time to time associated with the society, are those of John Woolridge, Peter Graffius, Henry Graffius, John Graffius, Hamilton Graffius, Joshua Graffius, Jacob Williams, Henry Bumbarger, Benjamin Knepp, John C. Cowder, Jacob Peters, David Welkers, Thomas Welkers, Patrick Curley, Robert Livergood, and others.

The regular pastors in charge of the United Brethren societies of Bradford township, have been as follows: Revs. Herrondon, Potts, Keys, Pringle, Kephart, Jeffries, Moore, Crowell, Richey, Rankin, Tallhelm, Clemm, Reynolds, Miller, Fulton, Conley, Smith, Woodward, and Noon.

Another noticeable feature and a prominent element in Bradford township is its numerous and well appointed school-houses and the excellent educational advantages afforded the youth, the township residents having the benefits of no less than nine schools, with the "joint" school at Grahamton, which is attended alike by pupils from both Bradford and Graham, in all a total of ten. Besides the joint school at Grahamton, those of Bradford proper are: Upper Woodland, taught by Madge Morrow; Lower Woodland, S. K. Rank, teacher; junction, formerly an independent district, but latterly one of the regular schools of the township, Annie Matthews, teacher; Bigler, at Bigler, Etta Faust, teacher; Egypt, situate in the northwest part of the township, Carrie Stewart, teacher; Pleasant Hill, in the central part, Maggie Forcey, teacher; Jackson, in the central portion, Grant Smith, teacher; Shiloh, in the northeast part, R. W. McDowell, teacher. The joint school at Grahamton is under the charge of J. Henderson.

That the whole area of Bradford township has an underlying strata of coal of variable thickness, is an undisputed fact; and further, that its fire-clay beds contain vast quantities of this valuable product is demonstrated in the existence of its extensive brick works at Woodland, and the large quantities of clay shipped to Wallaceton and Clearfield for manufacture.

Bradford lies wholly within the second coal basin, the central line of which crosses it from northeast to southwest. The first anticlinal axis is at Wallaceton, only a short distance from the southerly line of the township. Under normal conditions the prevailing dip from this axis toward the center of the basin would be northward and westward, but as the anticlinal rapidly subsides at Wallaceton, the prevailing dip is more generally toward the north than the northwest.

At Wallaceton the top of the conglomerate is about 1,720 feet above tide, while at Woodland it is only 1,450 feet, showing a falling off to the northwest of about 270 feet. This rapid dip toward the center of the second basin is plainly shown by some of the railroad cuts between Wallaceton and Woodland. In one cutting a thin bed of coal is exposed for some distance, showing a remarkably sharp dip to the north. The lower portion of the coal measure occupies most of the surface of the township, and only a smaller portion is sufficiently high to take in the upper beds of the series.

The second basin is not as deep in the township as at points further northeast, for the Rock City, near Kephart's, plainly shows the Mahoning sandstone at an elevation of 1,760 feet above tide, while in Girard township, to the northeast, this rock occurs in the center of the basin at 1,550 feet above tide-water. The top of the Conglomerate No. XII is above water-level on all the creeks and runs in the northern and northwestern parts of the township.

The coal beds that have been opened in this township, excepting, perhaps, the Soult bed, are all of rather small size. Nearly all of the country banks are opened on Bed B or C, neither of which much exceed three feet in thickness. The Gray bed, in the eastern part of the township, was opened on the Kittanning Upper Coal Bed C; on the Kephart place in the north part, on Bed A of the Intra-conglomerate coal; the Woolridge bank, near the central part on Bed D of the Lower Freeport coal, and shows from three to four feet of workable coal, but not of the best quality, being sulphurous. This coal is underlaid by fire-clay and some slate, beneath which is found a band of iron ore, giving evidence of the presence of the Lower Freeport limestone.

Three miles southwest from Woolridge's, and one and a half miles northwest from Woodland, is the Lansbury bank, opened on the Kittanning Middle Coal Bed C, at an elevation of about 1,580 feet above tide. It yields about three feet of coal. The old Lansbury bank is opened on what appears to be the Kittanning Upper Coal Bed C. It shows three feet of clean coal of excellent quality.

The semi-anthracite bed, opened on the Soult lands, and in operation since 1886, shows a clean bed of coal four feet four inches thick, and bids fair to develop an extensive industry in the vicinity of Woodland, that has been shown of much value to the lower townships of the county.

The coals of Bradford township, in their various classifications, are as follows: Freeport Upper Bed E, not well defined and probably quite thin; Freeport Lower Bed D, average thickness about three and one-half feet, quality fair; Kittanning Upper Bed C, average about three feet, and good quality; Kittanning Middle Bed C, from two to three feet, average about two and one-fourth; Kittanning Lower Bed B, heavier than any other bed, running from four to five feet; Brookville Coal Bed A, estimated as averaging about three feet.

The fire-clay beds of Woodland and vicinity are principally confined to the south side of the railroad, probably because the dip, being to the north, workings on the north side are difficult to drain. The mines of the Hope works are opened mainly on the south side of Roaring Run, and within one hundred yards of that stream. Massive sandstone makes the country rock between the stream level and floor of the mine. The working face of the clay averages about five feet of hard, good-looking clay, with softer and impure clay above and below. Another drift, not far distant, shows about the same, but with possibly more inferior and less valuable clay. An analysis of this clay yielded: Silica, 46.250; alumina, 37.500; protoxide of iron, 1.935; lime,.168; magnesia, .126; alkalies, 1.115; water and organic matter, 13.540. The clay is hard, compact, of a pearl gray color, and slaty structure.

The Woodland works were opened about half a mile west of the station, on the north side of Roaring Run, and averages from four to five feet of good, hard clay in places, but varying rapidly, the workable layer being sometimes pinch down very thin. An Analysis of this resulted as follows: Silica, 45.450; alumina, 36.125; protoxide of iron, 2.275; lime, .168; magnesia,.342; alkalies, 1.290; water and organic matter, 13.730.

Another bed has been opened about a half-mile northwest from Woodland, and a fourth about half a mile southeast of the Hope works. An analysis of each produced substantially the result shown by the Woodland and Hope beds.


Source: Pages 444-455, History of Clearfield County, Pennsylvania, edited by Lewis Cass Aldrich, Syracuse, NY: D. Mason & Co., Publishers, 1887.

Transcribed May 1999 by Myrna Livingston Hewitt for the Clearfield County Aldrich Project
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