Flourished in Pioneer TradeCommunity Is a Crossroads

Flourished in Pioneer TradeCommunity Is a Crossroads

By Lucille Donley (1976)

By Lucille Donley (1976)

Colebrook is at the geographic center of an area bound by Ashtabula, Niles, Chardon and Greenville, Pennsylvania. While these communities that lie 25 miles to the north, south, west or east of this Western Reserve township have grown into fair-sized towns, Colebrook's slow growth has not been enough to raise the population to its high of 800 which it had during our country's centennial celebration.

Colebrook is the crossroads to many places, a town that was settled in the pioneer tradition 165 years ago.

In 1808, the 16,000 acres were surveyed into half-mile square lots. Samuel Phillips, a Revolutionary War soldier and resident of Colebrook, Connecticut, was to assist in the surveying. When he arrived in Warren he organized a companywith John Henshaw as surveyor.

Their first night in the township was spent camped at the foot of a whitewood tree which stood west of the intersection of Route 46 and Windsor Road.

Also in 1808, the Windsor Road was laid out on the lot lines straight through the township one mile from the north line. In 1818 it was girdled four rods wide and in 1820 a mile was chopped out. The settlers set aside the first Monday of each month to work on the road, a rule that was followed faithfully for many years.

In the spring of 1821, Samuel Phillips Sr. made his fourth trip to Colebrook. He came on horseback and spent the summer working on his property. Roswell Stillman brought Phillips wife and their three daughters, Fanny, Cleora and Cordella. The journey had taken them only 28 days, the best time anyone had made.

Colebrook became a separate township. On the first Monday in April of that year, all the qualified electors met at the home of Francis Drake. Quincy, Putney and Colebrook were proposed as names for this new township with Colebrook receiving seven votes, Quincy one and Putney one.

New families began to arrive more often. Among those early settlers were Ezra S. Chapel, Daniel Loomis, John Bogue Sr. and Jr., Nathanial Shipman, Benjamin Scott, Sidney S. Carter, Josiah 1. Peck, William Forman and S.G. Peck.

In 1830, Henry Stults and his wife were the first to settle near the center. Others coming in 1830 were Isaac L. Jayne, Roland A. Treat, Gilbert Cole, Jacob Bunker, Joseph Allison, Sylvanus Webb, Elkenny Webb, Jonathan Webb and Elder David Webb. Most of these families were from Goram, New York, many having traded their fhrms there with Oliver Phelps.

Because Oliver Phelps had offered to give three acres at the center for a public park (worth then about $9) if the township was named Phelps, the first thing the settlers from Goram did was to petition the commissioners to have the name changed. This caused a furor with a petition submitted to the commissioners by people outside of Colebrook on behalf of the first settlers. The matter was acted upon by the state legislature but because of a technical error referred back to the township. In a general election it was again voted to have the name Colebrook. but by a majority of only two votes.

Colebrook is at the geographic center of an area bound by Ashtabula, Niles, Chardon and Greenville, Pennsylvania. While these communities that lie 25 miles to the north, south, west or east of this Western Reserve township have grown into fair-sized towns, Colebrook's slow growth has not been enough to raise the population to its high of 800 which it had during our country's centennial celebration.

Colebrook is the crossroads to many places, a town that was settled in the pioneer tradition 165 years ago.

In 1808, the 16,000 acres were surveyed into half-mile square lots. Samuel Phillips, a Revolutionary War soldier and resident of Colebrook, Connecticut, was to assist in the surveying. When he arrived in Warren he organized a companywith John Henshaw as surveyor.

Their first night in the township was spent camped at the foot of a whitewood tree which stood west of the intersection of Route 46 and Windsor Road.

Also in 1808, the Windsor Road was laid out on the lot lines straight through the township one mile from the north line. In 1818 it was girdled four rods wide and in 1820 a mile was chopped out. The settlers set aside the first Monday of each month to work on the road, a rule that was followed faithfully for many years.

In the spring of 1821, Samuel Phillips Sr. made his fourth trip to Colebrook. He came on horseback and spent the summer working on his property. Roswell Stillman brought Phillips wife and their three daughters, Fanny, Cleora and Cordella. The journey had taken them only 28 days, the best time anyone had made.

Colebrook became a separate township. On the first Monday in April of that year, all the qualified electors met at the home of Francis Drake. Quincy, Putney and Colebrook were proposed as names for this new township with Colebrook receiving seven votes, Quincy one and Putney one.

New families began to arrive more often. Among those early settlers were Ezra S. Chapel, Daniel Loomis, John Bogue Sr. and Jr., Nathanial Shipman, Benjamin Scott, Sidney S. Carter, Josiah 1. Peck, William Forman and S.G. Peck.

In 1830, Henry Stults and his wife were the first to settle near the center. Others coming in 1830 were Isaac L. Jayne, Roland A. Treat, Gilbert Cole, Jacob Bunker, Joseph Allison, Sylvanus Webb, Elkenny Webb, Jonathan Webb and Elder David Webb. Most of these families were from Goram, New York, many having traded their fhrms there with Oliver Phelps.

Because Oliver Phelps had offered to give three acres at the center for a public park (worth then about $9) if the township was named Phelps, the first thing the settlers from Goram did was to petition the commissioners to have the name changed. This caused a furor with a petition submitted to the commissioners by people outside of Colebrook on behalf of the first settlers. The matter was acted upon by the state legislature but because of a technical error referred back to the township. In a general election it was again voted to have the name Colebrook. but by a majority of only two votes.

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