History of Goshen Township - New Hampshire, Auglaize County, Ohio
From: History of Auglaize County, Ohio
Edited By: William J. McMurray
Histotical Publishing Company
Indianapolis - 1923


Goshen township, situated in the southeastern part of the county, is bounded on the north by Wayne township, on the east by Hardin county, on the south by Logan county and on the west by Union and Clay townships. It is made up of the south half of sections 25, 26, 27, 28, 29 and 30 and all of sections 31, 32, 33 and 34 and those parts of sections 35 and 36 lying outside the Virginia military lands in township 5, range 8 east, and those parts of sections 2 and 11 lying outside of the military lands and all of sections 3, 4, 5, and 6 and the upper half of sections 7, 8, 9 and 10 of township 6, same range, all comprising approximately eighteen square miles. The township is drained by the Muchinippe and Willow branch toward the Miami river and by Wallace Fork toward the Sciota, these two rivers thus having their headwaters in this watershed. About one fourth of the surface of this township originally was prairie or black muck and a review written in the late '70s said that "it is only a few years since it was covered with water and only good for duck shooting." However, the settlers about that time began to waken to the need of systematic drainage and Muchinippe creek was dredged to afford a better outlet, with the result that land which theretofore had been considered all but worthless was found to be as good as any in the county. There is little visible evidence now that any of the lands in this township ever were regarded as "worthless." The township is crossed by the Ohio Electric railway (former D. I. & I.), from Defiance to Springfield, which enters from the north in section 29, passes through the village of New Hampshire, about the center of the township, and on out in section 9. The old Wapakoneta and Belle Center pike, now paved with cement to New Hampshire and thence south and east along the embankment of Indian Lake (otherwise known as the Lewistown reservoir) and on to Bellefontaine, is in striking contrast to the makeshifts for roads the pioneers of that region were compelled to put up with. The Sciota River ditch, the straightening of the Muchinippe and the construction of the big Willow branch and the Wallace Fork ditches back in the 10s were the beginning of the days of better things agriculturally for this township and the admirable farm plants which in every direction now dot the township bespeak the wisdom of the promoters of these drainage projects.


Goshen township formerly was a part of Wayne township, at that time attached to Allen county, and so continued until set off to itself on petition of landowners there late in the year 1836, four years after the departure of the Indians. The action along this line is set out in the records of the board of county commissioners for Allen county as of December 5, 1836, as follows: "Bazle Day then presented a petition for a new township to be struck off of Wayne township, beginning at the northwest corner of the northwest quarter of section 30, in town 5, south of range 8 east; thence east to the county line between Allen and Hardin counties, thence south to Logan county line, thence west with said line to the northwest corner of Logan county, thence south to the northeast corner of Shelby county, thence west to the southwest corner of section 31 in town 6, south of range 8 east, thence north to the place of beginning. The commissioners being satisfied that legal notice had been given for the alteration, or for a new township to be struck off, granted the same petition, and the bounds of township to be described in the petition, and said township to be designated and known by No. 16, named Goshen. And that the electors of said township hold an election for township officers at Eli E. Corson's on Saturday, the 17th of December. Advertisements written and sent by Bazle Day."

The "Bazle" Day, here referred to and whose name is found spelled variously Bazle, Basle and Basil (the latter probably being correct), had entered his land in section 33 of this township, along Willow branch in the New Hampshire neighborhood, in 1832, the year the Indians took their departure, and early became one of the leaders of this community. Immediately following the erection of this township, John Kindle, who had entered his land here in 1836, platted a town site just east of Muchinippe creek on what then was known as the Fink road, laying out a regular tract of forty three lots, gave to this plat the name of New Hampshire, in honor of his native state, and filed the same in the office of the recorder of Allen county on March 4, 1837. This village, lying about the center of the township, became the social center for the new township and so continued, the only village in the township. It was without rail connection until the coming of the Ohio Electric traction line about fifteen years ago. The town has a grain elevator and the usual complement of stores for the trading needs of the neighborhood, and has a modern and well equipped public school building, a picture of which is presented in this work.


In this township, over in the Military lands section along the eastern line of this county, is the largest farm in Auglaize county and one of the largest farms in northwestern Ohio, the great Manchester farm, which has become widely recognized as a model of agricultural management and further and fitting details concerning which are set out elsewhere in this work. J. H. Manchester, owner of this farm, was twelve years of age when his father settled there in 1865, taking over a tract of 500 acres of unimproved land, which he proceeded to develop and to which he added until at the time of his death he was the owner of 1,000 acres, to which his son has since added until now the Manchester place takes in nearly double that area. Concerning the extensive farming operations carried on in this township, a review written twenty years or more ago, observed that "the great landed estates in the prairie are unsurpassed in picturesque beauty and fertility by any other locality in northern Ohio. * * * The great prairie and its drainage streams, in the former geological period, formed one of the five gaps in the dividing ridge of Ohio, through which the waters of the glacial sea flowed to the south. The great volume of water that flowed through the gap carried vast numbers of icebergs, loaded with great quantities of debris which was deposited as the bergs melted, forming gravel ridges along the line of the ocean current. There are evidences that there were ice gorges at the opening of the ice gap in the north and the bergs scraped and tore up the Erie clay at the bottom of the channel through the prairie. This prairie is also the source of two important rivers of the state, the Sciota and the Great Miami. The Sciota drains the greater part of the east prairie, while Muchinippe creek, head of the Miami, has been deepened and widened until it resembles a small river and drains the western prairie and adjacent territory."


A crayon sketch of what apparently was the chief corner in the village of New Hampshire fifty years ago reveals the two story log hotel conducted there at that time by William Gullet. Alongside the hotel, which carries a signpost bearing the legend: "Wm. Gullet, Hotel," there is a somewhat pretentious looking frame barn. At the rear of the hotel appears the well sweep. An apparent guest of the house is seen seated on the unprotected "stoop" of the hotel, another is seated on a fence which encloses the barnlot adjoining the house, while two others are leaning against the fence, all apparently engaged in deep conversation. A traveler is approaching the hostelry on horseback and a party of four are driving spiritedly past the place in a light spring wagon behind two prancing horses. Two women are standing at the doorway of the hotel and two men are standing in the middle of the street shaking hands. The hotel is twelve logs in height, with two doors and two windows opening from the ground floor and two windows from the second story front and the same number from the second story side, with but one window in the first floor side.

A plat of New Hampshire drawn in the late '70s reveals that William Gullet was the owner of three fourths of the block between Washington and Market streets and Main and Marion streets and that his hotel occupied the southwest corner of this block, while immediately across the street south, at the northwest corner of Main and Market streets, stood the Exchange Hotel and store of J. J. Hutchinson. It is related that the first merchants in the village were Hiram and Orin North, brothers, who later erected a mill. Hutchinson's store was established not long afterward. Both the Baptists and the Methodists effected organizations here in pioneer days. Professor Williamson's review has it that "no village in the county has attended more earnestly to the cause of education than the citizens of New Hampshire and the community immediately surrounding it." It was about 1890 that this community interest in schools thereabout led to the erection of a township high school in the village.


When Auglaize county was erected in 1848 there were the following landowners in Goshen township, according to the tax duplicate for that year: William E. Aylesworth, Henry Borton, William Black, Daniel Black, A. S. Bennett, Salmon, Sampson, Samuel and Washington Buffenberger, C. F. Beebe, Benjamin Bidwell, R. P. Bodwell, James Cramer, John Conley, Eli Carson, Ephraim Caldwell, Samuel Canada, J. J. Caswell, John Damon, Alanson Earl, John Graham, Marcus Garrett, Asa Gray, John Gilroy, Joseph Hipple, Gilbert Hurley, Solomon Hanks, Nathaniel Hunter, Jacob Harrod, Sarah A. Hutchinson, Percifer F. Hucheson, Thomas Irwin, John F. Krouskop, Henry King, James Kelley, John Kindle, Joseph Klim, William Lewis, Robert Murray, Robert L. G. Means, Ebenezer Miles, William Marquis, Milton McLean, John McLean, Jonathan and Samuel Morecraft, Elias Miller, Nicholas Martz, John and William North, Francis and John J. Nicholl, Thomas Patterson, Aaron Richardson, Edwin Stone, Christian, Philip and Sarah Smith, John W. Thomas, James Thomas, Sr., Sarah Winkley, Joseph F. Witham, Michael Waggant, George P. Williams and John Zaner.

In the Virginia military lands tract in this township there were at that time the following landowners: Green Thomas and others, the Mad River & Lake Erie Railroad Company, Valentine Peers, L. Somers, James Taylor and Wallace & Taylor, while in the town of New Hampshire in the same township there were then listed for taxation the following lot owners: Henry Barton, Matilda Blanchard, James Cramer, Elias Cline, Basil Day, John Gilroy, John Heindle, Solomon Hanks, Joseph Hipple, Nicholas Judy, R. L. G. Means, Samuel Morecraft and Adam Richardson.

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