ARMSTRONG COUNTY CIVIL ROSTER.
Governors. William F. Johnston, of Pennsylvania; Andrew J. Faulk, of Dakota Territory.
Congressmen. Gen. Robert Orr, Samuel S. Harrison, Joseph Buffington, Darwin Phelps and James Mosgrove all citizens of Kittanning. Walter A. Burleigh, a former citizen of this county, delegate to Congress from Dakota Territory.
State Senators. Robert Orr, Jr., 1822-25; Eben Smith Kelley, 1825-29 (died in the discharge of his duties at Harrisburg, Saturday, March 28, 1829); Philip Mechling, 1830-34; William F. Johnston, 1847, until he was inaugurated Governor in January, 1849; Jonathan E. Meredith, 1859-62.
Members of Assembly, or Representatives. James Sloan, 1808-09; Samuel Houston, 1817-18-19; Robert Orr, Jr., 1818-19-20-21; James Douglass, 1834-5-6; William F. Johnston, 1836-7-8, and 1841; John S. Rhey, 1850-1-2; J. Alexander Fulton, 1853; Darwin Phelps, 1856; John K. Calhoun, 1857-8; Philip K. Bowman, 1872-3; Andrew W. Bell, William G. Heiner, 1877-80; W. F. Rumberger, Lee Thompson and Frank Martin, 1880; Thompson and A. D. Glenn, 1882.
Member of Constitutional Convention for 1873-4. John Gilpin.
United States Commissioner. Grier C. Orr.
Collector of U. S. Taxes in 1816-17. Philip Mechling.
Collector of Internal Revenue, Twenty-third District. Robert L. Brown.
Deputy Collector for this County. William H. H. Piper.
Chief Justice Supreme Court of Pennsylvania. James Thompson.14
President Judges. John Young, Westmoreland county; Thomas White, Indian county; Jeremiah M. Burrell, Westmoreland county; John C. Knox, Tioga county; Joseph Buffington, Armstrong county; James A. Logan, Westmoreland county; John V. Painter, Armstrong county; Jackson Boggs and James B. Neale.
Associate Judges. Robert Orr, Sr., James Barr, George Ross, Joseph Rankin, Robert Orr, Jr., Charles G. Snowden, John Calhoun, Andrew Arnold, Hugh Bingham, Robert Woodward, Michael Cochran, Geo. F. Keener, John Woods, Josiah E. Stevenson, H. A. S. D. Dudley, John F. Nulton, Robert M. Beatty, James M. Stevenson.
Prothonotaries of Common Pleas and Clerks of the Courts of Oyer and Terminer and Quarter Sessions. Paul Morrow, James Sloan, George Hiccox, Eben S. Keley, James E. Brown, Frederick Rohrer, Simon Torney, W. W. Gibson, James Douglass, Jonathan E. Meredith, Samuel Owens, Simon Truby, Jr., James S. Quigley, John G. Parr, James G. Henry, A. H. Stitt.
County Commissioners. Appointed: James Sloan, James Matthews and Alexander Walker. Elected: Jonathan King, Adam Ewing, James Jackson, Thomas Johnston, John Henery, George Long, Ale. McCain, John Davidson, David Johnston, Philip Clover, Isaac Wagle, David Reynolds, Joseph Rankin, Joseph Waugh, Daniel Reichert, Philip Templeton, Sr., Joseph Shields, Hugh Reid, James Barr, George Williams, John Patton, Samuel Matthews, James Green, Job Johnson, Jacob Allshouse, James Reichert, Alex. A. Lowry, John R. Johnston, William Curll, Jacob Beck, George W. Brodhead, Lindley Patterson, James Stitt, Joseph Bullman, William Coulter, Amos Mercer, Philip Hutchinson, John Boyd, Robert McIntosh, Arthur Fleming, Andrew Roulston, John Shoop, William McIntosh, Archibald Glenn, Wilson Todd, Thos. H. Caldwell, James Douglass, David Beatty, George B. Sloan, William W. Hastings, John M. Patton, Wm. H. Jack, James Blair, Thomas Templeton, James Barr, Daniel Slagle, George H. Smith, Augustus T. Pontius, Peter Heilman, William P. Lowry, Thomas Montgomery, Thomas Herron, Wm. Buffington, Brice Henderson, and Owen Handcock, Lewis W. Corbett, John Murphy, James White, John Alward, T. V. McKee.
County Treasurers. Appointed annually by the county commissioners, as provided by acts of April 11, 1799, and April 15, 1834: Adam Elliott, Robert Brown, Samuel Matthews, Guy Hiccox, Thomas Hamilton, James Pinks, Alexander Colwell, David Johnston, Jonathan H. Sloan, Samuel McKee, Andrew Arnold, James Douglass, Samuel Hutchinson, John F. Nulton. Some of them were reappointed once or twice.
Elected as provided by act of May 27, 1841: John F. Nulton, George Beck, James McCullough, Sr., Absalom Reynolds, Henry J. Arnold, Alexander Henry, Thomas McMasters, Andrew J. Faulk, Samuel Crawford, Robert Anderson, William Brown, William McClelland (George Kron appointed to fill unexpired term of Wm. McClelland, deceased), J. Norman McLeod, (Samuel McLeod appointed to fill unexpired term of J. N. McLeod, deceased), Samuel W. Hamilton, Samuel C. Davis, John E. Alward, James Piper, James H. Monroe, T. Jeff. Elwood, John C. Walters. The present constitution of this state makes the term of county treasurer three years instead of two, as it was under the act of 1841.
Registers and Recorders and Clerks of Orphans' Courts. Paul Morrow, James Sloan, George Hiccox, Eben S. Kelley, David Johnston, Philip Mechling, Frederick Rohrer, John Croll, John Mechling, John R. Johnston, Joseph Bullman, William Miller, David C. Boggs, Philip K. Bowman, Wm. R. Millron, James H. Chambers and H. J. Hayes.
Until 1821 the offices of prothonotary, clerk of the courts, and register and recorder were held by one person.
Deputy Attorneys-General. Deputy attorneys-general were appointed by the attorney-general until, by act of May 3, 1850, the name was changed to district attorneys, one of whom was thereafter to be elected for by the voters of each county. Thos. Blair, Wm. F. Johnston, Michael Gallagher, J. B. Musser, John B. Alexander, John Reed, Geo. W. Smith, James S. Rhey, Thos. T. Torney, Daniel Stanard, Hugh H. Brady, Ephraim Carpenter, J. G. Barclay, John W. Rohrer, James Stewart.
District Attorneys. John W. Rohrer, Franklin Mechling, William Blakeley, Henry F. Phelps, John V. Painter, John O. Barrett, Jefferson Reynolds, Joseph R. Henderson, M. F. Leason, R. S. Martin.
Sheriffs. John Orr, Jonathan King, James McCormick, Joseph Brown, Philip Mechling, Robert Robinson, Thos. McConnell, Jacob Mechling, Jas. Douglass, Chambers Orr, Samuel Hutchinson, Job Truby, George Smith, John Mechling, William G. Watson, Joseph Clark, Hamilton Kelly, George B. Sloan, Jonathan Myers, Robert M. Kirkadden, George W. Cook (appointed vice Kirkadden, deceased), David J. Red, Alexander J. Montgomery, John B. Boyd, George A. Williams, James G. Henry, James H. Chambers.
County Superintendents. J. A. Campbell, Robert W. Smith, John A. Calhoun, James Richey, William Davis, Hugh McCandless, Samuel Murphy, A. D. Glenn, D. C. Stockdill.
Deputy Surveyors-General. Robert Richards, J. E. Meredith, Jackson Boggs.
County Surveyors. James Stewart, Robert S. Slaymaker, John Steele, Robert H. Wilson.
Armstrong county, 1825, Congress: Robert Orr, Jr., had 1148 votes, and Abner Lacock 111. Orr's majority, 1037.
Constitutional convention, 1825. Against, 921; for, 379 votes; majority against calling a convention to revise the constitution, 542.
The foregoing statistics were obtained from papers published in 1825. From 1828 to 1854 there was uniformly a democratic majority of several hundred, except that a volunteer whig candidate was, now and then, elected to some county office. In 1854 a new secret political organization, commonly called "Know Nothings," swept the political field with, to the uninitiated, an unexpected and astounding majority.
In the campaign of 1856 the republican party, newly organized, entered the political arena with the following results in this county: Presidential Fremont, Rep., 2,963; Buchanan, Dem., 2,680. Rep. maj. 283. In 1858: Judge of Supreme Court Read, Rep., 2,386; Porter, Dem., 2,003. Rep. maj. 383. In 1860: Governor Curtin, Rep., 3,474; Foster, Dem., 2,698. Rep. maj. 776. The presidential election was not earnestly contested by the democrats, so that the republican majority for Abraham Lincoln was large.
In 1862: Auditor General Cochran, Rep., 2,250; Slenker, Dem., 2476. Dem. maj. 226. In 1863: Governor Curtin, Rep., 3,146; Woodward, Dem., 2,977. Rep. maj. 169. In 1864: Constitutional amendment allowing soldiers to vote in the camp and field. For, 2,466; against, 1676. Maj. for amendment, 790. In 1865: Auditor General Hartranft, Rep., 2,810; Davis, Dem., 2,506. Rep. maj. 304. In 1866: Governor Geary, Rep., 3,758; Clymer, Dem., 3,078. Rep. maj. 660. In 1867: Judge of Supreme Court Williams, Rep., 3,439; Sharswood, Dem., 3,079. Rep. maj. 360. In 1868: Auditor General Hartranft, Rep., 3,987; Boyle, Dem., 3,459. Rep. maj. 528. In 1869: Governor Geary, Rep., 3,439; Packer, Dem., 3,079. Rep maj. 360. In 1870: Assembly Putney, Dem., 3,206; Steele, Rep., 3,197. Dem. maj. 109. In 1871: Auditor General Stanton, Rep., 3,515; McCandless, Dem., 3,144. Rep. maj. 371. In 1872: Governor Hartranft, Rep., 4,434; Bukalew, Dem., 3,469. Rep. maj. 965. In 1874: Lieut. Governor Olmstead, Rep., 3,858; Latta, Dem., 3,523. Rep. maj. 335. In 1875: Governor Hartranft, Rep., 3,605; Pershing, Dem., 3,121. Rep. maj. 4834. Brown, Prohib., 196.
JUDICIAL AND LEGAL.
The learned judges who have presided over the courts of this county have adorned their positions by their ability, integrity, impartiality and profound and varied knowledge of the law, and the learned professions have not been barren of devoted, well-read and eminent members who have held a high rank in the esteem of their brethren in other counties of our state. To the heritage of this county also belongs some of the credit and usefulness of inventive genius.
STUDENTS AT LAW AND ADMISSION OF ATTORNEYS.
Prior to September 1, 1873, any man, irrespective of his literary attainments, was allowed to study law without being registered as a student by the prothonotary, and members of the bars of other counties could be admitted to practice generally and permanently in this county on mere motion. At the time last above mentioned Judge Logan suggested and the court adopted a set of new rules, requiring all persons desiring to study law in this county to undergo a preliminary examination in all the branches of a thorough English education and the elements of the Latin language, by the board of examiners created by these rules, and each to produce and file with the prothonotary a certificate, signed by at least a majority of the members present, that the applicant is prepared and qualified to commence the study of the law, and that they have received satisfactory evidence of his good moral character, and that each applicant give in writing one month's notice to the secretary of the board of his desire to be registered, before he shall come before them for examination, and making it the duty of every attorney of the courts of this county to register with the prothonotary the name, age, and place of residence of every person studying the law under his direction, and the time of clerkship to be computed from the date of such registry. If the applicant is under the age of twenty-one years when registered, his clerkship is to be three years, and two years if he has then arrived at his majority, under the direction and in the office of a practicing attorney or a judge of said court; but if he shall have studied in a law school of good repute, the time thus spent may be counted as part of the term, except the last year, which must be spent in the office of his preceptor. After the expiration of the term of his clerkship he must undergo an examination of the board of examiners on the principles and practice of law and equity, and produce and file with the prothonotary, when his admission is moved for, a certificate signed by all the examiners who were present at his examination, that he is sufficiently qualified for admission to the bar, and they have received satisfactory evidence of his good moral character. Every such examination shall consist partly of written questions to be answered by the student in writing, which questions and answers are to be reported to the court. By a rule adopted and published December 6, 1875, each applicant for preliminary examination must pay to the secretary of the board of examiners the sum of $3, and each applicant for final examination the sum of $5, before he be entitled to his certificate of registration or a report in favor of his admission to the bar, for purchasing such books as the board may need and defraying such other expenses as may be incurred by the board.
Members of the bars of other counties of this state or of other states cannot be admitted to practice in the courts of this county until they shall have appeared before the board of examiners and produced a certificate signed by them, wherein all the examiners present shall certify that they have received satisfactory evidence of his moral character and professional qualifications, including at least two years' diligent study or practice of the law, and recommending his admission to the bar. Written notice of any such applicant's intention to apply for admission must be given to the board at least two weeks prior to the application, accompanied with the certificate of the president judge of the court in which he last practiced of his good moral character and of the length of time he had practiced therein. An attorney of another court can be admitted for special cases without the foregoing requisites.
The board of examiners consists of five members, a majority of whom constitute a quorum. At September term, 1873, the court appointed as members thereof Darwin Phelps, Edward S. Golden, John V. Painter, John Gilpin and Robert W. Smith. At June term, 1874, James McCullouch was appointed, vice John V. Painter, by reason of the vacancy occasioned by the latter's accession to the bench.
In the early part of this century the facilities for the enjoyment of religious worship and privileges in this county were, as is the case in newly and sparsely settled regions, very meager. Two Presbyterian churches were organized and two log church edifices, about eight miles apart, were erected on the west side of the Allegheny river, in what was then Buffalo township, in 1802. From those two churches have sprung all the other churches of that denomination in this county. These and other churches will be more specially noticed in the sketches of their respective localities.
Rev. T. M. Hudson, a venerable clergyman of the Methodist Episcopal church, had that portion of this county east of the Allegheny river in his circuit of three hundred miles, which he traversed fifty-four years ago. There were then, he informed me, no church edifices within that part of his circuit included in this county. Meetings were held in private houses and in open air, under trees, in pleasant weather, to which women, in some instances, went a distance of five or six miles with infants in their arms. The dwelling-houses did not lack ventilation. They were not as warm as modern dwellings. In one instance, said he, the feet of another clergyman were frozen while he was preaching in such a mansion.
Sabbath schools began to be organized in 1818-20. They were at first regarded, by at least some of the pastors and church members, as innovations upon the proper functions of the church, as the writer was informed by a gentleman who was cognizant of their first establishment in this county. That unfavorable view soon vanished, so that they have here, as elsewhere, been accepted and cherished, by pastors and people, for many years as important adjuncts to the church.
The number of churches in the county in 1850 was 65.
That the great interests of religion have been liberally fostered in this county is evident from the following statistics:
Presbyterian 1876 No. churches, 24; No. members, 2,989; No. Sabbath schools, 20; No. scholars, 2,097.
Methodist Episcopal No. churches, 19; No. members, 1,814; No. Sabbath schools, ; No. scholars, about 1,523, exclusive of the number attending the Union Sabbath school at Worthington.
United Presbyterian 1875 No. churches, 13; No. members, 1,038; No. Sabbath schools, 12; No. scholars, 744.
Episcopalian No. churches, 5; No. members, 330; No. Sunday schools, 4; No. scholars, 265. (Number of members and Sunday school scholars partly estimated.)
Lutheran (both synods) No. churches, 29; No. members, 2,672; No. Sabbath schools, 25; No. scholars, 1,907.
Reformed No. churches, 12; No. members, 825; No. Sabbath schools, 11; No. scholars, 630.
Baptist No. churches, 10; No. members, 650; No. Sabbath schools, 12; No. scholars, 500.
Dunkard No. churches, ; No. members, ; No. Sabbath schools, ; No. scholars, .
Roman Catholic No. churches, ; No. members, ; No. Sabbath schools, ; No. scholars, .
During the winter of 1876 there was a peculiarly deep and extensive interest awakened in religious matters, which resulted in considerable accessions to many churches of the different denominations.
THE ARMSTRONG COUNTY BIBLE SOCIETY.
The first meeting was held on Monday, September 15, 1828, at the court-house. Thomas Hamilton was chosen president, and James E. Brown secretary. A series of resolutions were adopted indicating, 1. An approval of the benevolent object of that Philadelphia Bible society to give a copy of the Bible to every family in Pennsylvania unable or unwilling to pay for it. 2. That a society for this county be formed. 3. That the business of the society be conducted by a president, six vice-presidents, and twelve other managers, who were to choose from their own body a secretary and treasurer. 4. The appointment of four for each township to visit every family in their respective townships. A permanent organization was effected at the evening session by electing Rev. John Dickey, president; Rev. John Reddick, Rev. Gabriel Adam Reichert, Rev. Henry Koch, Rev. John Core, Thos. Smullen, and Samuel Green, vice-presidents; Thos. Hamilton, Simon Torney, Philip Mechling, Frederick Rohrer, Robert Brown, Sr., Samuel Matthews, James Green, John Monroe, James Brown, Jr., David Johnston, Alexander Colwell, and James E. Brown, managers. The committees for the several townships were also appointed. The society was made auxiliary to the Philadelphia Bible Society.
The executive committee, D. Phelps, secretary, issued a circular November 17, 1841, inviting the aid of individuals in each township to distribute Bibles and Testaments, and visit each family in their respective districts. Application was directed to be made to Alexander Colwell before the 13th, and to enter upon their duties on December 27. Clergymen and church officers of all denominations were solicited to co-operate. The committee desired to ascertain the names of individuals in central situations who would be willing to keep depositories of Bibles and testaments for the supply of their respective neighborhoods.
That society still exists. A special effort, the centennial year, to see that every family in this county is supplied with the Bible.
The only educational facilities, except those afforded by the Kittanning academy, until after the passage of the act of Assembly of 1834 establishing a system of free schools, were afforded by pay or subscription schools, sparsely located, kept in log shanties in some places, and in octagonal log houses built expressly for school purposes, in other places, with puncheon floors, primitive desks, and long openings in the walls, a little above the desks, which were attached to the walls, covered with greased paper for windows. Spelling, reading, writing and arithmetic the last-named in many instances to a limited extent were about all that was taught in most of those schools. The teachers were generally men of mature age, of severe aspect and discipline. At least some of them were "Irish schoolmasters." The teacher in those pristine days, in most instances, might be described as Goldsmith describes the teacher of the village school:
"A man severe he was, and stern to view.
* * * * * *
Well had the boding tremblers learned to trace
The day's disasters in his morning face;
Full well they laughed with counterfeited glee
At all his jokes, for many a joke had he;
Full well the busy whisper, circling round.
Conveyed the dismal tidings when he frown'd,
* * * * * *
While words of learned length and thundering sound
Amazed the rustics ranged around;
And still they gazed, and still the wonder grew,
That one small head could carry all he knew.
But past is all his fame. The very spot
Where many a time he triumph'd, is forgot."
Several academies were founded in later years, which will be elsewhere noticed.
Among the county expenses for 1828 is the sum of $9.53 for teaching poor children. The mixed system of paying tuition by those who were able to pay, and the county paying it for those who were unable to pay, proved to be impracticable, and was rarely of any avail to those whose benefit it was designed, on account of their strong and natural repugnance to attending school as dependents, unlike their wealthier companions, on public charity for acquiring an education.
The free-school system placed all on an equal footing, and it has steadily progressed in accomplishing its beneficent purpose. When it was optional with each school district i. e., borough or township whether it would accept the system or not, it was readily accepted by all districts in this county.
As required by the act of April 1, 1834, the county commissioners and the delegates appointed by the several boards of school directors convened in the court-house on Tuesday, November 4, 1834. The number of delegates present was eleven. The Plum Creek district, and that consisting then of Kittanning borough and township, were not represented. On the questions: "Will the convention agree to appropriate for the establishment and support of common schools?" the vote was:
Yeas Jacob Mechling, Franklin township; James Adams, Sugar Creek township; George Means, Toby township; Samuel Marshal, Perry township; John Calhoun, Wayne township; Jacob McFadden, Clarion township; Sherman Bills, Kiskiminetas township, and James McCall, Freeport.
Nays John Hidley, Red Bank township, and James Hindman, Franklin township.
A resolution was passed providing that a tax of $1,920.18, or double the amount of the quota appropriated by the state, should be appropriated for that year.
In the convention held on Monday, November 2, 1836, the vote to appropriate for the support of common schools was unanimous. The districts of Allegheny, Freeport, and Perry were not represented. Double the amount of state appropriation to this county was ordered to be levied.
In 1840 there were fourteen school districts and 120 schools, which were kept open four months in the year.
By the general act of 1854 and its supplements each city, borough and township is made a district for school purposes, made subject to one board of directors control, and causing to be selected, triennially by the directors of the several school districts in each county except Philadelphia, a suitable person to be appointed (by the superintendents of public instruction) a county superintendent, whose duties are to examine all the applicants for teaching the public or common schools in his county, no applicant being permitted to teach such a school unless he or she has a valid certificate of qualification granted by that officer; to visit all the schools in the county as often as practicable, and perform various other duties prescribed by the school law. The intent of the law requiring teachers to be examined and their schools to be visited by the county superintendent is to exclude from the useful, honorable and responsible vocation of teaching such as are incompetent morally, intellectually, and by the want of proper culture.
The number of school districts reported in this county in 1837 was 14; whole number, 61; number then required, 87; average number months taught, 4 ½; male teachers, 58; female teachers, 10; average salaries of male teachers per month, $17.71; average salaries female teachers per month, $11.61; male scholars, 1,155; female scholars, 1,088; average number in each school, 46 ½; cost of each per month, 52 ¼ cents.
In 1850 the number of pupils attending the public schools was 6,477, and the number attending academies and private schools, 135.
The number of common schools in this county in 1858 was 199; then still required, 12; average number of months taught, 4.52; male teachers, 163; female teachers, 50; average monthly salaries, male $24.17; female, $18.18; number of scholars, male 5,094; female, 4,472; average attendance of scholars, 7,323; cost of teaching each scholar per month, 48 cents. Tax levied: For school purposes, $22,970.26; for building schoolhouses, $5,235.07; total amount levied, $28,205.33. Mills on the dollar for school purposes, 8.72; for building schoolhouses, 3.96; received from state appropriation, $2,654.38; from collectors of school tax, $18,114.60; cost of instruction, $19,358.11; fuel and contingencies, $1,593.22; cost of schoolhouses, viz, purchasing, building, renting, repairing, etc., $5,192.66.
In 1876 the whole number of common schools in this county was 261; average number of months taught, 5.9; male teachers, 163; female teachers, 106; average salaries per month of male teachers, $41.12; female, $34.40; scholars, male, 6,730; female, 5,933; average attendance, 8,252; cost of teaching each scholar per month, 76 cents; tax levied for school purposes and building schoolhouses, $75,719.25; received from state appropriation, $10,480.08; from taxes and all other sources, $87,854; total receipts, $98,334.08. Expended: For building, renting and repairing schoolhouses, etc., $22,949.37; teacher's wages, $47,711.68; fuel, fees of collectors, etc. $21,068.53; total expenditures, $91,729.58, being $3,000 less than for 1875. Contribution to Centennial fund, $36.50.
Thus it appears by comparison that the interest of and facilities for popular education in this county have progressed with its increase in population and development of material resources.
It is a part of the educational history of this county that there was for awhile considerable opposition to the county superintendency on the part of many of the supporters of the common school system. It was at first so strong that the first convention of school directors, May, 1854, fixed the annual compensation of the first county superintendent at the meager sum of $300, some of them thinking, as the writer was informed, that no one would serve for that sum, and that they would thus discharge the duty imposed on them by law of selecting a suitable person and fixing his compensation, and in that way dispense with the superintendent. They did not seem to consider that the law also prescribed that every teacher of common schools must be examined by that officer, and that if any schools in a district should be taught by teachers not having proper certificates there would have been a forfeiture of the state appropriation to the schools of such district, which, for all the districts in the county, amounted to several thousand dollars. The gentleman then selected, Rev. J. A. Campbell, after deliberation, concluded that he could not devote the time, labor and attention which the law required for that compensation, but proposed to accept the position for a year if the amount fixed by the convention would be increased to $400. In order that the school districts of this county might not lose their state appropriations, several citizens the writer does not remember the names of all of them pledged the additional hundred dollars, which they paid out of their own pockets, and the first incumbent of the new and to some extent obnoxious office entered upon the discharge of his official duties, in which he continued during the first two years and a part of the third year of the term, teaching part of the time a normal class and preaching to his congregation.
At the triennial convention of school directors in this county, May, 1857, the annual compensation of the county superintendent was fixed at $800. A majority of the directors subsequently elected deemed that too large a compensation, some of them thinking it ought to be about the average salary of clergymen in the rural districts. On the other hand, a minority of the directors thought otherwise, and favored the increase. In the attempt in the triennial convention, May, 1860, to reduce it to $600, it was, in the clashing of resolutions for increasing and diminishing, through want of sufficient knowledge of parliamentary rules, unintentionally reduced to $400, and thus it remained until Ma, 1865, when, on the petition of the requisite number of the board of school directors, the state superintendent ordered a reassembling of the convention, by which it was raised to the rate of $800 per annum for the rest of the term, which expired on the first Monday of June, 1866. It was afterward raise to $1000. For the present term it is $1200. The state pays the salaries of the county superintendents out of state revenue, but allows them to be fixed by the conventions of school directors of the respective counties. There is now little if any opposition in this county to that office, which State Superintendent Hickok used to denominate the "right arm" of the educational service in Pennsylvania.
district and county, are important features of our present school system. They have proved, when properly conducted, to be useful agencies in improving teachers. In conducting the former the teachers rely chiefly upon their own resources. Until the generous provision made by act of 1867, the county superintendent and teachers were obliged to rely principally upon their own mental and material resources in conducting the latter, which were, prior to 1868, local, that is, held in different parts of the county, and in which teachers were obliged to do a large part of the work. They were thus benefited, because "self-dependence is the great principle to be aroused," and because teachers will not attain their full statures if allowed to remain solely under the shadows of eminent instructors from abroad, however useful and serviceable the latter may be. The earlier county institutes, though less prominent before the public and more dependent on home talent than those held since 1867, nevertheless busy, working, improving ones, which awakened a lively interest in both members and spectators. For instance, the one held at Worthington in April, 1860, attracted thither a certain candidate15 for nomination as candidate for an important county office, who, supposing a large number of people would be there, which proved to be the case, thought that that would be an available point for electioneering. He went into that institute and became so deeply interested in its proceedings that he didn't electioneer worth a cent, or rather a vote. He afterward wrote a graphic account of what was done in the institute, which was published in the Free Press, and reproduced in the then next May or June number of the Pennsylvania School Journal.
The material aid afforded by the provisions of the act of June 1867, and realized from elocutionary and musical entertainments and series of able lectures, which have been liberally patronized, has enabled the county superintendent, since 1867, to secure the valuable services of some of the ablest, most skillful, and experienced educators of this and other states in rendering the more modern institutes attractive and effective. They have thus far been held at Kittanning, and attended by most of the teachers in the county. Stores of knowledge useful to teachers and highly practical have thus been bestowed which ought not to be fruitless in enhancing their culture and refinement. Progress in the intellectual and esthetic culture of teachers and pupils, and improvement in school-buildings and furniture within the last two decades, has been considerable, though not to so high a degree as devoted, enthusiastic and perfection-loving educators desire. Every section of the county is now dotted over with comely temples of knowledge, in which every child of proper age can receive at least a good common English education.
As early as 1810, a newspaper, bearing the name of The Western Eagle, was established in Kittanning, by Capt. James Alexander. The first number was issued September 20, 1810. It was discontinued while its proprietor was in the military service, but was revived for a short time after his return. Its size was 18x11 inches. It contained sixteen columns, i. e., the above-mentioned first number.
The Kittanning Columbian and Farmers' and Mechanics' Advertiser was the next newspaper established in this county. Its proprietor and publisher was Frederick Rohrer, assisted by his younger brother George Rohrer. It was of medium size, published weekly, and democratic republican in politics. Its issue of June 5, 1819, No. 14, Vol. I, is before the writer, from which it appears that its first issue was on Saturday, March 6. (It was finally merged with the Gazette.) The presidential election proclamation in the issue of October 7, 1820, shows that Philip Mechling was still sheriff. It also appears from other contents that the late Gen. Orr was then a candidate for assembly, on the democratic republican ticket, and the late Samuel Houston for the same, on both the democratic-republican and Indiana county tickets; that John Cribbs, James Pinks, Robert Robinson and Thos. McConnell were volunteer candidates for sheriff, and Anthony Montgomery, Peter Klingensmith and Jas. Jackson were candidates for county commissioner at the October election.
The Kittanning Gazette was established by Josiah Copley and John Croll, and its first number was issued August 17, 1825. It was conducted under the firm name of Copley, Croll & Co. until 1829, when Copley withdrew. It and the Columbian were merged about April 12, 1831, and was published as the Gazette and Columbian, by Simon Torney and John Croll, under the firm name John Croll & Co., until November 6, 1832, when Croll withdrew, and Copley became the editor and publisher for the estate of Simon Torney, deceased, until 1838 the Columbian part of the name having been dropped prior to 1836 when, i. e., about April 5, 1838, it passed into the control of the late Benjamin Oswald, who, in the first week of May, 1841, changed the name to that of the Democratic Press, and afterward to the Kittanning Free Press, which name was retained until May, 1864, when it was purchased from Mrs. Oswald by an association, and its name changed to Union Free Press, which it still retains. Marshall B, Oswald succeeded the association as publisher of the paper, and in 1876 sold an interest to James E. Neale, Esq., who, after being elected to the bench in the spring of 1881 (April 9), transferred his half to G. S. Crosby, Esq.
It was issued under the name of Gazette uninterruptedly, except the short period during which it bore the name of Gazette and Columbian, from 1825 until 1841. It was, for a few years, while it bore the name of Gazette and Columbian, the organ of the democratic-republican party in this county. It was afterward a whig paper. On the dissolution of the whig party it became a republican organ, which it still is. It was never a professedly antimasonic paper, though for a year or two it acted in harmony with the antimasonic organization, while it bore the name of the Gazette. As Gazette and Free Press it has flourished more than half a century.
In February, 1830, the publication of the Armstrong Advertiser and Antimasonic Free Press was commenced by the late Judge Buffington, which was subsequently continued by William Badger until August or September, 1833, when the type and other materials thereof were transferred to Freeport, and thereafter used in the publication of the Olive Branch.
Though not germain to the history of journalism, it is to the history of printing in this county, the fact that fifty years ago, in 1826, Copley, Croll & Co. entered into book-printing. In that year they printed for the author, a Kittanning clergyman, a book of 286 pages duodecimo, entitled "Lectures on Theology, or Dissertations on some of the most important Doctrines of the Christian Religion, by the Rev. Moses P. Bennett, Minister of the Episcopal Church," which did not prove to be pecuniarily profitable to either the author or the printers. There are thirteen lectures on as many different topics, written in a perspicuous style, and evincing much study and research. The reasoning is logical, but whether all the ideas accord with those of such as are held to be orthodox is a question for the theologians to settle.
Proposals were made in 1830 for publishing a weekly German paper, to be called the Armstrong Republican and Friend of Liberty, by Simon Torney & Co., as soon as sufficient encouragement should be afforded. That project was not consummated.
The Armstrong Democrat was established by Frederick Rohrer and John Croll June 4, 1834. It continued to be a democratic paper under their proprietorship, under that of Andrew J. Faulk, and under that of Wm. McWilliams, until 1864, when it espoused the cause of the republican party. Its name was soon changed to that of the Armstrong Republican. It has been owned and conducted for several years past by A. G. Henry, whose son, W. M. Henry, local editor, has also been manager since 1880.
The Mentor was established in the fall of 1862, by J. A. Fulton, and was published and edited by him until May or June, 1864, when he disposed of it to an association, and its name was changed to that of Democratic Sentinel, which has since been published and edited by John W. Rohrer. The Mentor was the organ of the peace wing of the democratic party in this county. The Sentinel is democratic in politics.
The Centennial, an amateur juvenile monthly, owned and published by Reichert Bros., near the corner of Water and Mulberry streets, was first issued in April, 1874. Its size for the first three months was about 7x5 inches; it was then enlarged to about double that size, and in April, 1875, to 10x14 inches.
The Valley Times was transferred to Kittanning from Freeport, the first number being issued here May 6, 1876. It is published by Oswald & Simpson in Reynolds' building, northeast corner of market and McKean street.
The first newspaper published in Freeport was the Olive Branch, of which William Badger was the proprietor and editor, who had previously published and edited the Armstrong Advertiser and Antimasonic Free Press at Kittanning, the type and material of which he transferred hither in August or September, 1833. Its publication continued for about two years. The Freeport Columbian and Leechburg and Warren Advertiser was established here by A. J. Foster in 1839, which was transferred in April, 1842, to John and Samuel McCulloch, by whom it was published as a democratic paper until about 1845. The Visitor, after making divers visits to the domiciles of its patrons here and round about, departed. The Freeport Ledger was published by A. J. Gibson from 1853 until 1855-6. The New Era was established by Simon Shoop in the spring of 1872, who, a few years afterward, transferred it to James A. McCulloch, and its name was changed to that of the Valley Times, which, in the early part of 1876, was transferred to Oswald & Simpson, and removed to Kittanning. The seventh and present paper published here is the Freeport Journal, edited in part by Rev. John J. Francis. Those were all issued weekly, and were neutral in politics, except the Columbian.
The first newspaper published in Apollo was the Warren Lacon, the first number of which must have been issued on or about November 6, 1835. It was of medium size, and printed by Robert McKissen. The writer is indebted to Dr. Robert E. McCauley for No. 47, Vol. III, issued on Wednesday, October 31, 1838, which contains but a part of a column of editorial matter; it was a democratic paper; most of the advertisements were from abroad; it is barren of items of local interest save the election returns and the list of letters for twelve individuals remaining in the Apollo postoffice on the first day of October, then instant, furnished by Samuel Owens, postmaster. Its publication ceased, as the writer is informed, in a few years thereafter, probably in 1840. The Apollo Lacon and Kiskiminetas Review was established in September, 1875, by Miss Jennie Stentz, who shortly afterward transferred it to J. Melhorn, its present publisher.
The Leechburgh Enterprise is the title of a monthly journal that was established in 1873, and was edited and published by Mr. Robertson for several years. It was conducted later by H.H. Wray, and was made a valuable special medium for the presentation of the various branches of business and the facilities therefor peculiar to Leechburgh and its vicinity.
The people of Dayton being in an extreme corner of the county, where they were not easily reached by the city or Kittanning papers, resolved at a late day to have a journal of their own. Thus it came about that the Dayton News company was organized, and on November 10, 1882, the first number of the paper issued. It soon acquired a circulation, and has since been in prosperous condition. The publishers of the News are Messrs. Elder, Orr & Co.
READINGS FROM OLD KITTANNING JOURNALS.
A few old newspapers, published here at different periods, are before the writer. The oldest of them is the first number16 of the first volume of the Western Eagle, which was issued on Thursday, September 20, 1810, by James Alexander, whose office was then on lot No. 217, at or near the corner of Water and Mulberry streets, and subsequently lot No. 122, below the alley on the north side of Market Street. The quality of the paper is fair and reasonably tough. The type must have been new or nearly so. The size of the sheet is 18x11 inches. Its sixteen columns are filled chiefly with foreign news, and contain but little of domestic or local interest.
That Eagle, figuratively speaking, took its flight from its eyrie the second day before the autumnal equinox, but as it did not utter a single screech indicating stormy weather, it is presumable that its first appearance to the then 250 inhabitants of "Kittanning town," as this place is written on some of the old assessment lists, was in a genial flood of September sunlight. Dropping the figure, the reader may readily imagine that groups of Kittanningers, at least the reading portion of them, devoured the contents of that first Kittanning newspaper, and gathered in groups in the inns, stores and offices, or in the shade of that large old wild-cherry tree that stood in Market below Jefferson street, or beneath the thrifty and fruitful hickory trees that were frequent along the river bank, to welcome their new visitor and discuss the foreign and domestic news thus wafted to them.
That number of the Eagle contains only three advertisements, which fill a column and a half. One of them is a reference to lands in other parts of the county. Another one is the proclamation of Jonathan King, the then high sheriff of this county, for the election of one person for member of the House of Representatives of the United States, for the district composed of the counties of Armstrong, Indiana, Westmoreland, Somerset, Jefferson and Cambria; one member of assembly in conjunction with Indiana county; and one county commissioner. The remaining one is the letter list, dated September 17, of that year, by which it appears that David Lawson was then postmaster, and letters of seventy-six persons were then remaining in that office, a considerable number of whom must have resided from fifteen to twenty or more miles from this point. It may here be mentioned as quite remarkable that David Lawson had in all eleven children, four of whom were boys and seven girls, and that every one of them is still living, the youngest being about fifty-four years of age. That family circle, excepting by the deaths of the parents, is still unbroken.
The only original matter in that number of the Western Eagle is a column and a third of introductory remarks by the editor, announcing the price of the paper to be $2 a year, exclusive of postage, payable in cash or rags, at 2 ½ cents per pound, half-yearly in advance; that the paper would be forwarded immediately after publication by a private post, if there should be sufficient number on the route to defray the expense, at 50 cents a year each, payable half-yearly in advance; and during the then existing arrangement for the arrival of the mail the publication day would be every Friday. The other portions of those remarks are well written, and contain correct ideas as to the province and duty of an editor in relation to laying before the people correct information concerning the foreign and domestic policy of our government and the treatment of public and private individuals. He says that "in conducting the Western Eagle, it is determined that foul and malicious calumny shall not be permitted to vilify its columns. If the public character of any man be necessarily examined, the examination shall be made fairly but not maliciously; it shall be confined to him as a public character, and shall not descend to a scrutiny of his private conduct unconnected with his public station. The intention on this subject, as well as on all others, is not to abuse, not to descend to scurrilous invective, but on all occasions to present an open, candid and honest statement to the public scrutiny." His prospects seemed to be "flattering. Friends appear on all sides determined to exert themselves in fostering a paper and assisting its continuance in the county of Armstrong." The name of Wm. McCorkle, written in ink on the margin, indicates that he was one of the first or original subscribers. The office in which it was published was, I am informed, in a log building on lot No. 122 on the north side of Market street near the public alley, which was afterward destroyed by fire while occupied by the late Nathaniel Henry as a cabinet-shop.
Passing over a period of ten years, the writer's eye falls upon No. 83, Vol. II, of the Columbian, issued October 7, 1820. "Jefferson street, southwest corner of the public lot, near the courthouse."
From the proclamation of Philip Mechling, then sheriff of this county, for the general election, on Tuesday, the 10th of that month, it appears that the law then required two persons to be voted for sheriff and two for coroner. By the act of 1817-18 the court-house was made the place for voting at the general elections by the voters residing in the election district, then composed of Kittanning township, which, until the formation of Pine township, embraced all the territory on the east side of the river between Crooked and Mahoning creeks, and extending east from the river to the present western boundary lines of Plum Creek, Cowanshannock and Wayne townships; and that election district also embraced that part of the territory on the west wide of the river between the Allegheny river and a line beginning at the mouth of Glade run, now in the township of North Buffalo, thence to the place where the line of what was then Buffalo township crossed that run, which point is in the present township of East Franklin, about one mile and forty rods southeast of Middlesex, and thence to Cummins' Rock, on the Allegheny river, which is a short distance above the mouth of Mahoning creek, at the foot of Kelly's chute. There are now within the limits of that district six entire election districts and parts of three others.
The number of business advertisements, aside from those connected with the printing office, did not exceed six, and there are only nine announcements of candidates for county offices in that issue of the Columbian. The claims, merits and demerits of the gubernatorial and congressional candidates then before the people for election were sharply but not scurrilously discussed by contributors.
The issue of October 5, 1825, contains seven legal notices, among which are the proclamation of Thomas Burnside, speaker of the Senate, and of Thomas McConnell, sheriff of this county, for the election of a State Senator, in the district then composed of the counties of Armstrong, Cambria, Indiana, Jefferson, Venango and Warren, to fill the vacancy in our State Senate caused by the resignation of Robert Orr, Jr.; four announcements of candidates for Senator Eben. Smith Kelly was elected; five for Member of Assembly; five for county offices; six business advertisements; two lists of letters, one of which is that of Samuel Houston, postmaster, dated October 1, 1825, and containing the names of sixty-one persons, some of whom must have resided at least twenty miles distant; and the appeal made by divers citizens in favor of the election of David Reynolds as County Commissioner, in which is the following paragraph, showing the then embarrassed condition of our county finances: "Mr. Reynolds was elected a Commissioner in 1816, when our finances were as gloomy, if not more so, than at present; when his term of service expired, by his exertions and the co-operation of his colleagues, the situation of the treasury was so much improved that upward of five hundred dollars in cash remained in the treasury after extinguishing existing debts and the current expenses of the county, without imposing any extraordinary burthen upon the citizens thereof."
It is noticeable that in the issue of June 21, 1828, the number of legal and official notices and business advertisements had increased to twenty-four. The report of John Galbraith, the borough treasurer, signed by S. S. Harrison, burgess, and attested by James Douglass, clerk, appears therein, showing the receipts into the borough treasury, for the year ending May 27, 1828, to have been $392.25 ½, and the expenditures for borough purposes for that year $355.34 ¾.
It also appears from the Columbian of June 21, 1828, that a "large and respectable Jackson republican meeting" was held at the court-house on Thursday evening, June 19, 1828. Resolutions were unanimously adopted concurring with the nomination of James S. Stevenson, of Allegheny county, therefore made in that county, and instructing the two delegates Frederick Rohrer and John Mechling from this county to support that nomination in the general convention to be held at Butler. That candidate was not, however, nominated by that convention. But John Gilmore was. So it is nothing new under the sun for Butler to secure the nominations of candidates for important offices. It is a fact of history, at least of political history, that Butler county has been favored with very many, if not more than her full share, of such nominations, as well as important appointments.
In No. 526, issue of October 3, 1829, the number of notices and advertisements is thirty-seven, yet occupying nearly a column less than those of the issue of June 19 of the previous year. Among the advertisements is the professional card of the late Governor, William F. Johnston, dated September 26, 1829, in which he tendered his services as attorney at law to the citizens of Armstrong and the adjacent counties. His office was then "directly opposite Mr. Reynolds' inn," which was on lot No. 126, south side of market below Jefferson street. Among the legal and official notices are the proclamations of Daniel Sturgeon, then speaker of our State Senate, and of Jacob Mechling, then sheriff of this county, for the special election of a senator to represent the Twenty-fourth senatorial district, vice Eben Smith Kelly, deceased, to be held on Tuesday, October 13, then instant. That paper contains announcements of candidates, viz., three for State Senator, four for Assemblyman, eight for County Commissioner, three for County Auditor, three for Sheriff, and four for Coroner.
Those papers contain but very little original editorial matter, and no information of immediate local interest, except such as may be gleaned from the above-mentioned notices and advertisements.
Leaving the Columbian, and glancing at its successor, the Gazette and Columbian, new series, Vol. I, No. 42, Whole No. 458, 18x13 inches, issued on Wednesday, September 3, 1834, it is found that four of its twenty columns are filled with legal and official notices and advertisements. Among the former is the proclamation of Chambers Orr, then sheriff, dated August 6, giving notice to the qualified voters that an election, as required by the act of April 1, 1834, would be held at the usual places of holding elections in the various boroughs and townships of this county, on Friday, September 19, then next, for the purpose of choosing six persons to serve as school directors in each school district, which consisted of either a township or borough, which was the first election of directors by virtue of the first act of assembly establishing a system of common schools in this state. A contributor had discovered some opposition to that system, which, he found, arose from two classes of citizens one opposed it from sordid and selfish motives, and the other for political purposes. After giving cogent and substantial reasons for supporting the system, he urged the people to turn out on that day and elect directors whom they knew to be "sterling friends of the system."
Nearly a column of that issue is filled with a forcible editorial in favor of "Our Immediate Interests," and insisting on the Allegheny river and French creek as a better and more direct route for the extension of the Pennsylvania canal to Lake Erie than the Beaver and Shenango one, which was afterward adopted.
Meetings had been previously held in favor of the former canal extension route. An unusually large and respectable one of the citizens of Kittanning was held Wednesday evening, January 16, 1828, of which Thomas Hamilton was president, and Frederick Rohrer and James E. Brown were secretaries, by which resolutions strongly condemnatory of the latter and as strongly in favor of the former route were adopted. A committee to draw up a memorial to the Legislature on the subject was appointed, consisting of Samuel S. Harrison, Robert Robinson, Thos. Blair, Geo. W. Smith, John Francis, Philip Mechling and Robert Brown. Another committee of correspondence was also appointed, consisting of Samuel Houston, Thos. Hamilton, Frederick Rohrer, James E. Brown and Josiah Copley. Similar meetings were recommended to be held elsewhere, in counties interested in the navigation of the Allegheny river. In pursuance of that recommendation, meetings were held at Lawrenceburgh and other places. On February 2 another large meeting was held at Kittanning, of which S. S. Harrison was president, and Thos. Blair and G.W. Smith were secretaries. The suggestion of the Lawrenceburgh meeting, relative to the call of a general convention at Franklin, Venango county, was approved, and David Lawson, Thos. Blair and Philip Mechling were appointed delegates. That general convention was held at Franklin, on Monday, March 25, and strong resolutions in favor of the Allegheny and French creek route were adopted. Still the Beaver and Shenango route was adopted by the Canal Commissioners and the Legislature.
About three columns are occupied by the correspondence between J. McCullough, Sr., A. W. Lane, James Douglass and many other citizens, and John Gilmore, of Butler, who was then a volunteer candidate for Congress, which clearly indicates that they were mutually in favor of a national bank, and presents their reasons for being so. Among the miscellaneous matter is an amusing narrative of a scene in the first court held in Butler county, which was both serious and comical, taken from Brackenridge's Recollections of the West.
Among the official notices is that issued by James McCullough, adjutant, for the Seventh battalion of volunteers to meet at the house of Frederick Yockey, in Kittanning (now Valley) township, at 10 o'clock A. M., on Wednesday, September 10, then next, completely armed and equipped for training. It also appears from that number or issue that the regular nominees of the "democratic-republican" party that year were Samuel S. Harrison, of Kittanning, for Congress, and Meek Kelly, of Indiana, for State Senate. The volunteer candidates were John Gilmore, of Butler, for Congress, and Joseph Buffington, of Kittanning, and Alexander McCalmont, of Franklin, Venango county, for State Senate. The regular nominees were elected. There were thirty causes on the trial list for the third week of September, that year.
Turning to the Kittanning Gazette, new series, Vol. III, No. 9 113, whole number 529, same size as the preceding, issued on Wednesday, January 20, 1836, the writer finds four of its columns filled with advertisements and official notices. Among the latter is a list of letters reaming in the postoffice January 1, 1836, Alexander Reynolds, postmaster, giving the names of sixty-seven persons, some of whom resided several miles distant.
The slavery question had then begun to be freely discussed in the columns of the Gazette. A contributor who had resided in one of the slave states fills more than a column of that number in showing the fallacy of the postulate assumed by McDuffie and other slaveholders: "That the African negro is destined by Providence to occupy this condition of servile dependence, is not less manifest. It is marked on the face, stamped on the skin, etc." He shows from the Bible that man-stealing and man-selling are crimes, whose penalty, prescribed therein, was death. As to the mark on the face and stamp on the skin, he asks how came they? And then argues, if all on whom they are found may be pressed into the service of the South as menial slaves, then some, at least, who were born with as pure blood as any son of liberty, may fall under this dreadful doom; for instances are not wanting in our own country, and one of a very remarkable character in the State of New Jersey, of a gentleman becoming as dark as an aboriginal African, in consequence of disease, and continued so for more than twenty years after the recovery of his health. This was the natural effect of a peculiar state and condition of the bile, and such an appearance from this cause is urged by Dr. Blumenbach as undoubtedly analogous with the natural color of the skin in the African race." He further argues that this "mark" is produced by natural causes, principally by the influence of climate, citing the physiological fact that the true skin or cutus in people of all the different grades of color is white, and the external of scarf-skin is the most perfectly transparent in those of the darkest color, and instancing the graduation of color the perfectly white, the less white, the olive, the tawny, and the black caused by the influence of the varying heat of the sun from the highest latitudes to the equator, so that with the exceptions made by the operations of particular local causes, every parallel of latitude presents us with a different shade of complexion. He then pertinently asks: Where shall the line be drawn to designate those who are so manifestly marked out of slavery from those who have an undoubted right to liberty?
Nearly two other columns of that number are filled with a portion of the debates on the slavery question, in the then recent synod of Virginia.
It is announced in another column of that number of the Gazette that a copy of a printed protest of the American Anti-Slavery Society against the denunciations of the President of the United States in his message, signed by Arthur Tappan, William Jay, and others, had been sent to each member of congress, and the following reply from J. Spreight, M. C. from North Carolina: "I herewith return you your protest, inclosing, as a testimony of my high regard for your necks, a piece of rope. You will no doubt appreciate my motives."
In another part of that issue are some of the proceedings in the "Investigation of Masonry" in the legislature of this state.
Such was some of the reading matter which agitated the minds and stirred the blood of the readers of the Gazette in Kittanning and elsewhere over twoscore years ago.
The writer has casually picked up the Kittanning Free Press, Vol. XII, No. 23, issued July 14, 1853, size 23x16 inches. Advertising had then considerably increased, for in that issue are nine and a half columns of business advertisements and legal and official notices. Among the latter is the statement of state appropriations to the common schools of this county for that year, showing that the amount then appropriated to the school in this borough was $159.12; also the list of letters remaining in the Kittanning postoffice July 1, then instant, Simon Truby, postmaster, containing 266 names of individuals and firms.
Source: Page(s) 13-59, History of Armstrong County, Pennsylvania by Robert Walker Smith, Esq.
Chicago: Waterman, Watkins & Co., 1883.
Transcribed January 1999 by Jeffrey Bish for the Armstrong County Smith Project.
Published 1999 by the Armstrong County Pennsylvania Genealogy Project.