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History of Tioga County, Pennsylvania
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By John L. Sexton Jr. as taken from County Atlas of Tioga County Pennsylvania 1875 and also 1883 Tioga CountyHistory
Covington Township Taxables 1815
Covington township is one of the oldest in the county. Its original territory comprised what is now the townships of Richmond, Sullivan, Ward, Union, Liberty and Bloss, and Fall Brook, & Blossburg Burroughs embrace aimed a great portion of the mineral lands and some of the best agricultural lands in the county. It was formed from Tioga, Feb. 15, 1815. At the first assessment, made by Ichabod Rowley (John Knox, Asa Mann, and Elijah Dupuy County commissioners), the taxable inhabitants were as follows:
David Austin, Samuel Aldrich, Ebenezer Burley, David Burley, Alpheus Button, Joseph Bunn, Rufus Butler, Aaron Bloss, Gideon Briggs, Abner Cochran, Henry Campbell, John Cochran, Elijah Clark, Seth Clark, David Clemons, Stillman Cannon, Samuel Campbell, Levi Elliott, Eli Gitchell, Aaron Gillett, Charles Gillett, Asahel Graves, Josiah Graves, Levi Gifford, Noah Gifford, Samuel Higley, George Higley, Timothy Higley, Christopher Huntington, Shubb Huntington, John Keltz, Peter Keltz, Henry Knowlton, Absalom Kingsbury, Daniel Lamb, Henry Lamb, Gad Lamb, Minard Lawrence, John Levegood, Silas Lamphere, Erastus Lilibridge, Jacob Miller, George Matteer, Richard Miller, John Marvin, Asa Mann, Samuel Negley, Thomas Overton, Elias Pratt, Rufus Pratt, William Patton, Levi Prentice, Thomas Putnam, Elijah Putnam, Nathan Rowley, Nehemiah H. Ripley, Ichabod Rowley, Cephas Stratton Thomas Sampson, Joshua Shaw, Amos Spencer, L.H. Spencer, Ichabod Smith, John Shaffer, Jonathan Sebring, Nathan Whitman, Isaac Walker, Archelias Wilkins, Daniel Wilkins, Tilley Marvin, David Harkness, David Harkness Jr., Royal Walker, Lorain Lamb, Seneca Stratton, William Merritt.
There were at that time large tracts of land owned by nonresident. On the county commissioners' book is this record: "Ichabod Rowley, as assessor for the township of Covington, presented his bill for assessing said Township, 17 days at one dollar per day - $17.00. Extravagant charge; deduct $5; which was accordingly done." It will thus be seen that the office of assessor at that time was no sinecure, nor one in which the incumbent could become a millionaire. Twelve dollars for the assessment of what is now eight townships and two boroughs!
As soon as Covington became prosperous she began to lose her territory. Covington Township was organized Feb. 15, 1815. The foreign assessment was made, or rather be for one was returned to the County commissioners' office, that township of Sullivan was organized from Covington, Feb. 1816, and the assessment which we have given by the township of Covington was the first one returned to the county commissioners in the year 1817; and, although the township of Sullivan was formed one year later than that of Covington, yet Sullivan returned for assessment through James Grey Jr.., assessor, at the same time that the assessor of Covington did he has, viz. In December 1817, as shown by records at Wellsboro. The township of Liberty was formed from Covington and Delmar in 1823; the township of Richmond from Covington and Feb. 1824; Rutland from Sullivan in 1828; Union from Sullivan in 1830 - the second granddaughter of Covington; Bloss from Covington in June 1841; Ward from Union and Sullivan in February 1852, and Hamilton from Bloss and 1872. The Borough of Fall Brook was organized from Ward township in August 1864, and Blossburg from Bloss in August 1871. Thus has the original territory of Covington been taken from her. The township is now bounded on the north by Richmond, on the east by Sullivan and Ward, on this out by Hamilton township, the borough of Blossburg, and Bloss township, and on the past by Charleston township.
The Tioga River passes north nearly through the center the township, and along its banks is some of the fine alluvial soil, while on the rolling lands the east and west of the River isn't very excellent grazing land, together the soil admirably adapted to oats, potatoes, corn, buckwheat, and the orchard fruits. The Times is a general rule while well cultivated, and farmers prosperous and "forehanded". The Tioga and Elmira State Line RailRoad passes through the township, keeping of course near the banks of the Tioga River. Originally the land in the township was covered with an exceedingly heavy growth of timber, consisting of white pine, hemlock, hard maple, Beach, Hickory, walnuts and cherry. The pioneer who early invaded the forest to hew a home had a gray work before him; and when we at this time will go over the well cultivated farms, free from trees, sounds in stones, and view the fields of waving grain, the neat and well constructed farm houses, the great barnes, cattle and luscious fruit, we little realize the years of toil that it has taken to change the wilderness into a fruitful and productive country.
the earliest that are within the present limits of Covington that we can discover was Aaron Bloss, who located near Covington Village in 1801. He was followed by David Clemons, Messrs.Hovey, Mallory, Washburne and Sackett, Levi Prentiss, John Patten, Tilley Marvin, J. Coonrod Youngman, Asahel Graves, Absalom Kingsbury, Isaac Walker, Peter Keltz, Sumner Wilson, Robert Searles, Samuel Negley, Christopher Huntington, Nathaniel Elliott, Elijah Putnam, Thomas Dyer, Nathan Rowley, Ichabod Rowley, David Harkness, E. B. Gerould, and Thomas Putnam.
Among the very earliest settlers in Covington Township was David Clemons, a native of Hampshire county Massachusetts. His residence before locating in Covington was Jay, Essex County, New York. And 1806 he located about two and a half miles south of the present borough of Covington, near the Tioga River, on the Williamson road. He was a widower at the time, with three children-named Camilla, Colborn, and Alanson. He subsequently married we Reynolds, a native of Vermont, and their children were William, Cuyler, Susan, Roxanna and James. The children surviving are: Susan, a maiden lady; Roxanna a widow of Horatio W. Ames, who died at Fortress Monroe in December 1861; and James. David Clemons opened the coal at Blossburg on Bear Run at a very early period where, after the construction of the railroad in 1840, it was extensively mining by the Arbon Coal Co., William M. Mallory and Duncan S. Magee. Aaron Bloss owned the minds at the southern portion of the borough of Blossburg, and gave the name to the township and borough; but it was upon the "Clemons Opening" that the coal was mining before shipment. There are several of his descendants in addition to those we have named, living in the township of Covington and add Blossburg, and the portion of the "old Clemons Homestead" is the in their possession.
Asahel Graves with his wife and three children came from Peru, Bennington County VT, to Covington in 1811. He left three children in the east, one of who came to having 10 and was known as Mrs. Goodenow. Mr. Graves lived to a very advanced age, and was one of the pioneers who could in a very intelligent matter relate the incidence connected with the early settlement of Covington.
Tilley Marvin, another of the old settlers, was born in New Hampshire, in March 1793, and settled on the west side of the River in Covington in 1817. He cleared out a large farm, and was one of the most energetic and industrious men in this section of the county. He was four times married, and was the father of 24 children. His first wife, Hannah, died March 23rd 1823, aged 35 years; his second wife, Gamilla, died March 2, 1837, aged 40 years; his third wife, Eliza, died Oct. 28, 1862. He was married again, but died soon after, May 25th 1865, aged 72 years, two months and 21 days. His well married his brother John, then a man over 80. He died and she married again.
Sumner Wilson came to Covington from Belchertown, Hampshire County, Mass., in March 1818, and located near the present township line between Covington and Richmond. His route from the East was via the Cherry Valley Turnpike to Ithaca and Newtown (now Elmira), and a journey was made into covered sleigh with four horses attached. His daily then consisted of a white and for children, Alpheus, Sumner, Olive A. and Daniel. Four children were born to them in Covington-Mary, John, Thomas and William. Mr. Wilson purchased a farm of James Negley and cleared it out, residing on it until his death, about 12 years ago. The fun still remains in the possession of his descendants.
Another old Seller and prominent businessman was Ephraim B. Gerould, who came to Covington about the year 1822. His ancestors were our French origins and originally spelled their names Gerauld. At the time of locating in Covington Mr. Gerould was a widower, and he subsequently married Miss Christiana Putnam, daughter of Elijah Putnam. Mr. Gerould was a farmer and merchant, and one of the most enterprising man of his day. He was county commissioner in 1830. He owned a farm in the southern central portion of Covington, and add his death, which occurred April 22nd 1845, was engaged in farming and mercantile pursuits. He was then 57 years of age. He was a brigade inspector of militia, and his son H. M. Gerould was a brigadier general. A military company was organized in Covington in 1840, and maintained its organization until about a 1855. During that period the captains of the company were A. L. Johnson, H. M.. Gerould and 0. G. Gerould.
One of the most sterling citizens of Covington was Richard Videan, or Uncle Dick, as he was familiarly called. He was a native of England, and came to Covington about the year 1831. He cleared up a large farm near Covington borough, on the west side of Tioga River near the Copp Hollow road. He was a great hunter and took delight in the Chase, and many were the trophies of his skill with the rifle, among them a huge set of elk horns, which hung in the hall of his dwelling and served as a hat rack. His early struggles in clearing up a new farm, like those of all other pioneers, were hard in the extreme; yet he enjoyed life and a companionship of friends, and his old age was crowned with confidence that strongly contrasted with the days when he first attempted to hew out a home from the forest. His home was always the scene of hospitality and good cheer. He died April 6, 1873, aged 74 years, six months and 12 days.
David Caldwell, a prominent citizen to Covington for many years, was born in Lycoming County, Nov. 10, 1804. He was son of James Caldwell, who lossed his life in the defense of his country in the war of 1812, and grandson of Brattan Caldwell, one of the "Fair Play" men of the Revolutionary war, particularly distinguished on the west branch of the Susquehanna, and who was the first white man married on the West Branch. David Caldwell was married and Jersey Shore December 27, 1827, by the Rev. John Grier, too Miss Mary A. Bodine, by whom he had 10 children, five boys and five girls, viz.: Frederic, deceased; I. O.; Margaret, wife of John Taylor; Sarah, wife of J. L. Miller; John B.; Anna, wife of Burr H. Hendricks; Mary, wife of W. H. Fonda; Ella, wife George Wilkins; David, and Ellis H., deceased. Mr. Caldwell settled in Covington in 1840 and soon became one of its leading citizens. He held various township offices, and in 1852 was elected County Commissioner. He was post master at Covington from 1857 to 1861. He has been a lifelong Democrat. He is now in the 78 year of his age, and well preserved mentally and physically.
Until about 1840 settlements in Covington township were confined chiefly to the banks of the Tioga River. A few settlers however had located on the State Road on on the east and west side of the Valley. John Copp, a native of Rhode Island, settled west of Tilley Marvin's, in what is now known as "Copp Hollow". It was banned a wilderness. His children were James, Richard, Lorenzo, William, Reuben, Harrison, Hannah, wife of ____ Huddington; Luthania, wife of Alanson Clemons; Lois wife of Alnin Gaylord, Lucy, wife of Curtis Cole; Rebecca, wife of ____ King; and a son named John, who died young. Mr. Copp resided In Copp Hollow many years. His wife died and he removed to Minnesota. His son James clear up a farm of 106 acres, and at the age of 64 died, leaving a wife and 10 children. Richard is in Chippewa Falls, Wis.; Lorenzo in Minnesota, William died on the journey west, in 1860; Reuben and Harrison living Covington township; Hannah went to Ohio with her husband in 1859; Luthania, wife of Alanson Clemons, resided in Copp Hollow; Lois, wife of Alvin Gaylord, the Mansfield, Lucy in Ohio, and Rebecca in Utah them.
Among settlers who located soon after Mr. Copp were the Zimmer's and Mudge's, and off from Copp Hollow Road were the Hutchinsons and Cameron's.
The early settlers on the Elk Run Road were Alonzo Reddington, James Pettis, Asahel Graves, Deacon Jonathan Jennings, Isaac Bliss (father of the celebrated evangelist P. P. Bliss, room at such a tragic death at Ashtabula, December 30th 1876), and Abram Johnson, who erected a sawmill and employed at one time quite a number of men. It was on his road that P. P. Bliss spent several years of his young life, working on the farm, and the lumber woods, and add such service as he could obtain. It was there that he was baptized and became a member of the church. The citizens of Covington during the later years of Mr. Bliss' life took a deep interest in this success and popularity of one who had lived among them, attended their schools son and their midst and made the first effort of his life and that locality; and when the sad tidings of his untimely death were announced by telegraph none were more sad than the citizens of Elk Run from. in Covington.
Settlers also located on the State Road, and near it on crossroads, among whom were Norman Rockwell, Avery Gillett, Nathaniel Eliott and Levi Elliott, the latter on the Charleston line that Cherry Flats. Matthew Skelley settled on the west side of the River about a mile and a half west of Covington; and on the East, at a point now known as Frost Settlement, were Lyman Frost, James T. Frost, Samuel and Louis Walker, Joseph Jacques (father of Charles Jacques), Peter Whitaker, Silas Lamphere and John Cleveland. These sturdy pioneers encountered hardships and privations, but during all the trials they never lost courage, and the result has been the well cultivated farms of the present.
James T. Frost was 20 years of justice of the peace, and his decisions were respected and concurred in. During his life many difficulties and differences were settled without the forms of law by his kindly advice and intervention. He ever acted as if his duty as a magistrate consisted in preventing lawsuits, instead of fomenting and fostering them; and many of his old neighbors of today look back with pleasure to the difficulties that his good advice removed, preventing them from dashing headlong into the labyrinth of the law, which their own impetuous temper prompted them to do. He still lives to enjoy their confidence and respect.
Thus were the hillsides and rolling lands of Covington settled, and every year for many years were new settlers added. Hospitality, friendship and neighborly love as a rule prevailed. Every new settler was welcomed, and made to feel that he was no intruder, and, however humble his circumstances, the right hand of the pioneer was extended to him and his family in token of friendship and brotherly love, and he was encouraged in all his laudable undertakings.
The Walkers, Samuel and Lewis, who settled in Frost Settlement, were sons of Isaac Walker who settled in Covington July 4, 1813. They have gone to rest, and other numerous family (seven sons and three daughters) of the old pioneer only three survive. Asahel resides in Illinois, Lydia, wife of Everett Bloss, resides in Covington, and James in Blossburg. James was only four years of age when his father located in Covington. Seventy years he has resided in the original township of Covington. He was married September 1st 1833 to miss Ella Hazleton, of Covington, by whom he had three children-Delos H., late sheriff of Tioga County; Roswell A., who died in the service of his country Dec. 9, 1862 at Belle Plain, Virginia, while a member of the 132nd Regiment PA volunteers; and Mary A., wife of Alfred T. James. James Walker is still hail and hearty, and possesses the integrity of character characteristic of the funds of the "old Granite State"; and, although he is possessed of competence, his industrious habits will not permit him to rest permit labors. He is in his 74th year, strong and vigorous, an honored citizen and a member of the Baptist Church.
Covington Township Schools
Township schools commenced about the year 1830, in rude log-houses,
which in time have been supplemented by the neat framed and painted school
house of the present. Before the passage of the free school law of 1834,
and its supplements of 1838, neighborhood or private schools were maintained.
These are generally held in the dwelling of a settler. After the free school
off went into operation school houses were erected, and schools established
with stated teachers, and progress has been made from time to time in the
architecture of these nurseries of intelligence and freedom, and in the
appliances for aiding the teachers in their work. There are now 10 schools
in the township, where 9 male and 11 female teachers were employed in the
two school terms for the year ending June 6, 1881. 326 pupils received
instruction. Among the teachers who were employed for the year ending June
1882 were F. H. Marvin, Lizzie Lewis Carrie Rockwell, Mrs. O.. Barnes,
Dora James, Miss Knowlton, Jennie Welch, W.O Lewis, Miss Sarah Harvey,
Ms. Rockwell, Miss Edith Mannigan, Miss O.E. Horton and Rev. G. W. Headley.
The vote for township officers in Covington and for the present term was as follows:
Supervisors-James Dewey, 93; D. O. Ford, 59; H. Copp, 78
Constable-Nelson Clemons, 60; C. D. Frost, 13; L. B. Whitney, 56; w. F. Packard, 1
School directors-C. F. King, 87; S. T. Marvin, 74; D. F. Martin, 17
Assessor-G. W. Johnson, 117
Assistant assessor-L.. R. Walker, 107; D. H. Walker, 100
Treasurer- A.. W. Mudge, 67; John Blair, 40
Town clerk-G. M. Butler, 37; J. B. Ford, 74.
Judge of election-G. S. Harding, 89.
Inspector of election-Eli Jelliff , 35; John Pattison, 25; A. H. Ingalls, 21.
Auditor-W. O. Lewis, 60.
By John L. Sexton Jr.
And most of the early settlers at Covington were from New England and possessed the intelligence and vigor which have so uniformly distinguished her sons and daughters. They commenced in earnest to reclaim the wilderness and bring under cultivation the virgin soil. The Williamson Road was cut out north and South through the Tioga Valley in 1792, and the East and west State Road from Towanda, Bradford County, west to Wellsboro via Covington and 1808. These highways afforded the early settlers a mode of ingress and egress, and it was nearer or at their intersections that the earliest settlers located, where the present borough of Covington is situated, 35 miles south of Corning, 12 miles east of Wellsboro, 5 miles south Mansfield and five miles north of Blossburg, on the line of the Tioga and Elmira State Line Railroad.
For the very earliest settler is at Covington the nearest trading points were Athens, at the junction of the Chemung and Susquehanna River, (then known as "Tioga. Point"); Painted Post, at the junction of the Conhocton River with the Chemung; and Williamsport on the west branch of the Susquehanna River at the mouth of Lycoming Creek. It was not long however, that the settlers of Covington were dependent upon the towns mentioned for their supplies or trading posts. At "Covington Four Corners" a little village grew up, supplied with stores, shops, mills, hotels, and all the necessary institutions both a thriving and prosperous community. The citizens were generally public spirited, and for quarter of a century Covington was the most favored and prosperous village into County of Tioga; and as early as 1831 the borough of Covington was organized, being preceded only one year by the county seat, Wellsboro.
It will be borne in mind that the township of Bloss was not organized until the year 1841, Blossburg only being a small ham lots until that time, and Covington this center of trade and population from which radiated the Enterprises which ultimately resulted in the development of the mines at Blossburg. Covington can therefore be justly called the mother Blossburg, or the hive from which to a marked degree emanated the prosperity of the latter town. Probably no borough in the County has had so many stages the prosperity and impression as Covington. From 1820 to 1840 great improvements were made. During that period streets were opened upon both sides of the river, running north and South, and a general impetus was given to business by the erection of mills, factories, stores, hotels, churches, school houses, and all the requisites of a flourishing country town. Great projects were conceived and carried into execution. Blossburg was banned in Covington Township, and many other leading man who were prominent in the building of the Corning and Blossburg Railroad, which was completed in 1840, made Covington their temporary or permanent home.
Covington remained a Bourough a number of years, when it's charter lapsed. In 1851 it was made a Bourough again, with the following officers: George Knox, Burgess; John Lang (now Treasurer of the Fall Coal Co.), clerk; Martin Gerould Street Commissioner on the east side of the river, and Elijah Gaylord on the West side; O. F. Taylor, treasurer; Ira Patchen, collector; A. L.. Johnson, poormaster.
The Chief Burgess is of the Bourough since have been George Knox, W. C. Webb, T. Putnam (twice), J. C. Bennett (twice), Edwin Dyer, H. M. Gerould, Ira Patchen, Leonard Palmer (twice) Perley P. Putnam, O. G. Gerould (twice), A. M. Bennett (3 terms), Jacob Hartman, E. B. Decker, Charles Howland, T. B. Putnam, William Lamkin, Edwin Klock, J. M. Hoagland.
The present bourough officers are: Burgess, J. M. Hoagland, clerk, S. A. Gaskill, Councilman, Harry Kendrick, Michael Dailey, William Holman, John W. Horton, F. P. Copp, S. A. Gaskill; assessor, Charles Howland; assistant assessor, T. P. Putnam, George Keltz; Judge of election, Henry LeValley; inspector of election, Samuel Putnam, E. Howland; auditors, W. S. Farrer, W. H. Lamkin, G. A. Spring; high Constable, Frank Ferguson; Constable, Thomas W. Patchen; justice of the piece, O. G. Gerould, L. B. Smith.
Covington bourough now contains for churches (Presbyterian, Baptist, Methodist, and "Christian"), a grated school, 2 general stores, 2 drug stores, a hardware and a tin store, a hotel, 2 blacksmiths shops, a glass factory, a sawmill, a grist mill, a shingle mill, a wagon shop, 2 shoe shops, 3 groceries, a furniture store, a soda and mineral water bottling establishment, a clothes pin manufactory, 2 gun shops, 2 watch makers shops, a barber, a newsroom, a harness shop, a fruit drying establishments, a tannery, a driving park, 3 physician's, 3 residence ministers and about 800 inhabitants. There has been a marked improvement in the business of the borough within the last two years. The glass manufacturing of Messrs. Hirsch and Ely has been within that time steadily running, giving employment directly and indirectly to about 100 men; a a number of new dwellings and business places have been erected, a and nearly 400 inhabitants added to the population since 1880, which has given new life to every department of business. Located in the center of a good agricultural country, it's continued prosperity is now assured, with the aid which local manufactories are giving it.
The glass manufactory was erected about 30 years ago by David Hurlbut, and has had many owners and lesses. About two years ago Hearsh, Ely, and company of Blossburg purchase it in and placed Indian repair, and this firm has since been running yet with profit. John B. Hirsch is the manager, Michael Ely the store agent, and a concern is under the general superintendence of B. N. McCoy of Blossburg, who also looks after the general interest of the glass manufactory owned by the same firm at the latter place. The factory has been the means of stimulating business in a large extent in Covington giving employment for ten months in the year to a large number of man, and adding materially to population and business.
Among the industries at Covington which bids fair to result in extensive business is the evaporate her or fruit drying establishment of Messrs. A. M. Bennett and G. A. Spring. And 1881, when it was established, it gave employment to 10 persons, and handled many thousand pounds of fruit, which in that had a ready cash sale in the market. Bright hopes are entained by its projectors and the community for the development of the very extensive trade.
Early and Prominent Residents
Elijah Putnam was an early settler. He came from the Langdon Cheshire County, New Hampshire, and located within what is now the borough of Covington in the year 1809 he was more and in Worcester, Massachusetts June 1st 1761. His father was a cause of all the celebrated general Israel Putnam Of Revolutionary fame. Elijah Putnam went into New Hampshire soon after the close of the revolutionary war, and remain they are till 1809, when he talked his family in a sleigh and came to Covington by the way of White Hall, Saratoga, Utica, Ithaca, Horseheads and Painted Post. His family consisted of a wife and for children-three daughters and one son, Lucy, Christiana, Sally and Thomas. Mr. Putnam was a man of great energy, or enterprise and industry, and did much toward the developing of the new home in the wilderness of Tioga. The guy in August 11th 1825, aged 64 years, 2 months, 11 days. His wife, Lucy, survived him nearly nine years. She died May 23rd, 1834 aged 76 years, three months and 12 days. They were pioneers both in New Hampshire and PA, and were distinguished and notable persons of those early days. Their daughter Christiana married Ephraim B. Gerould. Sally married Peter Keltz, and has continuously resided in Abington 74 years. Lucy remained unmarried. Thomas became a distinguished citizen of the county. He was born in Massachusetts, June 14,1790 and was about 18 years of age when he came with his parents to Covington. For many years he was inactive businessman, highly respected by his fellow citizens; with county treasurer in 1824, and subsequently largely engaged in farming. He died July 12, 1870, aged 80 years and 28 days.
Isaac Walker came from New Hampshire and located at Covington,
on the west side of the Tioga River, within the present limits of the bourough,
July 4th, 1813. His family consisted of a wife, and seven sons
and three daughters-Royal, Isaac, Asahel, Samuel, and Roswell, Lewis, James,
Polly, Lydia and Cynthia. At that early J. Mr. Walker and family were quite
in addition to the little Hamlet. He died July 25th, 1839, age
72 years; four months, and five days. Many other descendants of this worthy
pioneer are in Covington, Blossburg and vicinity. His eldest son, Royal,was
for many years one of the leading carpenters of the county, and the remainder
of the family became highly respected members of society.
Peter Keltz preceded Isaac Walker in his residence in Covington by about five years, having located there as early as 1808. He was also a carpenter. He came from the Valley of the Mohaw., and as well as of German descent. On the first of January 1818 he was married to miss Sally Putnam, daughter of major Elijah Putnam, and for nearly 60 years they live happily together.
Maj. Thomas Dyer in the year 1820 came from Amherst, Hampshire County MA, to Covington. He and formerly resided in Rhode Island's and had been a manufacture of cotton goods. He came prepared to open to store, and by the aid of 2 yoke of oxen and any horse, attached to a ponderous New England wagon, he made the journey with his goods and family from Massachusetts. They crossed the Hudson at Catskill, ascended the mountains, and passed through the counties of Greene, Delaware, Broome and Tioga to Newtown (now Elmira), and thence via Troy and Columbia Flats to Covington. When near Columbia Flats, Bradford County, major Dyer stopped had a settler's by the name of Mudge, but the latter could not entertain him and his family overnight, and the major press on to the darkness and had the misfortune to drive off from the pole bridge into a stream, and nearly erected cargo. He finally staid all night with a settler named Briggs, and in the morning "righted off" his load and that day arrived at his destination. Among the wares with the major had purchased for the trade at Covington were axes, scythes, (Bush and grass), Cow bells and straw and cotton goods. For these he found are ready sale, and is fame as a merchant was established. Maj. Dyer became one of the most prominent citizens of the county and held a number of important trusts among men being county treasurer of 1834-35. It was during the year 1834 that asked county treasurer he went in Philadelphia and negotiated alone for the county commissioners from the Mechanics and Manufacturers Bank, to erect present Tioga County courthouse and Wellsboro. He was a good financier and was vice president of the bank Of Towanda. Maj. Dyer had done service in the war of 1812 as a marine he died June 30th, 1850, a 68 years and 19 days. He left a good record and it must for developing the business interests in the community in which he lived.
Edwin Dyer , subsequently known as Judge Dyer, was born near Providence, Rhode Island, in 1807, and accompanied his father, Major Thomas Dyer, to Covington in 1820 he became one of the most prominent citizens of the place. He was largely interested in coal and other lands of Covington in Blossburg, and directly and indirectly added much in the building of the first railroad in the county, the Corning and Blossburg, now the Tioga and Elmira State Line Railroad. During the early history of the railroad he accompanied Honorable Samuel W.. Morris of Wellsboro to New York and Philadelphia and assisted him in selling the stock, in order to raise money for the construction of the road. He was largely engaged in mercantile pursuits, and from 1839 to 1842 his sales were from 60 to 80 thousand dollars per annum. He spent large sounds in improving the bourough of Covington, erecting dwellings, stores, hotels, mills, shops, churches foundaries, and depots etc. He erected the buildings now occupied as a depot and Post Office,, and for 32 years from 1840 held a position of station agent,, a greater portion of the time giving his personal attention to do business connected there with. And 1851 he was elected associate Judge of Tioga County, and served with honor and credit five years. An 1867 his fine residence was were, which proved a great loss to him. Most of his valuable household goods and keepsakes and his fine library were destroyed. He served several terms as Chief Burgess of Covington; was presiding officer in the Odd Fellows Lodge and an elder in the Presbyterian church. As a father he was kind and affectionate, as a neighbor accommodating, and as a businessman energetic and public spirited, as a citizen a polished and affable gentleman. He died at his residence in Covington, Saturday August 23rd, 1879 aged 72 years. His funeral was largely attended on Tuesday August 26, Rev. G. D. Meigs officiating. Business prices were close during the services, and every mark of respect was shown his memory. The union Sunday school and Odd Fellows lodge attended in body, and at the grave the services were conducted by a latter. He last five daughters-Mrs. Esther A. McGrath, Miss Fannie A.., Miss Belle, Mrs. Catherine D. Keene, and Mrs. Ellen D. King- to mourn his loss.
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