History of Towanda Township, McLean County, Illinois
From: History of McLean County Illinois
By: Jacob L. Hasbrouck
Historical Publishing Company
Towanda Township. - Being a prairie district, Towanda was not settled as early as some of the townships having
timber. There is only 460 acres of timber in the township and the rest of the land is rich prairie soil. Smith's
grove, named for David Smith, who settled there in 1830, is in the center of the township, while in the north part
is a strip of timber along Money Creek. John Trimmer and family were the first settlers, coming in 1826, following
an Indian trail from the Wabash country and settling at the grove. Frederick Rook came soon afterward, but later
moved to Livingston County. William Halterman settled on the prairie in 1840. About 1837 Elbert Dickason and John
Pennell erected a sawmill on Money Creek. David Trimmer had a blacksmith shop at the head of Money Creek timber
as early as 1828. Jacob Spawr and Eliza Ann Trimmer were married on Dec. 3, 1826. Notices of the proposed wedding
were posted, in lieu of getting a license from the county seat. W. C. Orendorif performed the wedding service.
The postoffice of the township was at the home of William D. Moore, on the site of the present town of Towanda.
The first preacher was John Dunham at Smith's Grove in 1832. Rev. Ebenezer Rhodes visited this section in his rounds.
There are now Methodist, Presbyterian, Baptist and Catholic churches in the township.