History of Woodstock (Village), Champaign
County, OH (Part 2)
From: History of Champaign County, Ohio
Judge Evan P. Middleton, Supervising Editor
B. F. Bowen & Company Inc. (Publisher)
Indianapolis, Indiana 1917
FACTORIES, MILLS AND SHOPS.
There have been blacksmith shops in Woodstock since its earliest history, and the followers of Tubal Cain have
usually been woodworkers as well. W. B. Linell, the first blacksmith, was followed by Erastus Martin, the latter
subsequently becoming the wealthiest man in the township and one of the wealthiest in the county. Elder Marsh and
James Conner came in as blacksmiths in the forties and continued for a number of years. Philander Geer came in
the fifties and Miles Standish and Ancil Mechaum came in still later. The firm of Morrissey and Fox followed in
the nineties and both are still in business, although not in partnership.
OTHER INDUSTRIAL COMPANIES.
Woodstock is not on a stream and consequently has never had the opportunity of providing itself with water power
mills. The first saw mill was opened in 1850 by Jesse and Stephen K. Smith, brothers, in the north end of town.
Five years later Jesse Smith in partnership with Orris Fairchild, added a flour mill and the combined saw and flour
mill. was doing a big business when the whole establishment was burned to the ground in the spring of 1858. The
firm had no insurance, but Smith was a man of energy and evidently of considerable means. The railroad had reached
the town in 1853, and after the fire he bought an acre south of the railroad and proceeded to rebuild both mills
at once. The flour mill was discontinued many years ago, but the saw mill was operated year after year until a
few years ago, when Pearl Bennett, the son of Barnett Bennett, who had run it for many years. sold it to parties
in Georgia. It is now doing duty in the cypress swamps of that state.
A brief account has been given of the first exponent of the healing art - the woman with the healing apparatus,
white horse and undertaker husband. The first real physician in the village was Dr. Daniel Delaney, who came to
Woodstock with his wife in 1834 and built a house in the little village. He was a well educated physician and soon
built up an extensive practice. His wife was a cousin of Henry Ward Beecher, was a well educated woman, and for
many years was a teacher in the community. So excellent was the character of her teaching that many school teachers
completed their work under her schooling and went out to take charge of schools in Champaign, Logan and Union counties.
In fact, there was a greater demand for Woodstock teachers trained in Mrs. Delaney's school than could be supplied.
Her husband spent a few hours each day in the school room, long enough to "hear" the lessons in arithmetic.
CHURCHES AND CEMETERIES.
The village has had two churches for more than seventy years. As has been stated, most of the first settlers were members of the Christian church, but a few years later most of those in the immediate vicinity of Woodstock became identified with the Universalist church. The Christian church was definitely organized on April 13, 1839, by Amos Stephens, Harrison Lines, Gardner Thomas. Elias Smith and others. They bought a lot of Sylvanus Smith in 1844 and built a brick church the same year, dedicating it on November 19. This same building is in use in 1917. The Universalists also erected a brick building in 1844, the trustees at the time being Jonas Miller, Eliphas Burnham and John McDonald. This church was in use until replaced by the present brick building in 1893. The Catholics have never been sufficiently strong in the community to have a building, but are served by the priest from Urbana at regular intervals. For many years mass was said at the home of Mrs. Michael Sullivan, but services are now held in one of the town halls. A complete history of the Woodstock churches may be seen in the church chapter. The first village cemetery was laid in 1846 and stands at the west side of the town. Richmond Sibley was the first person buried in the cemetery and during the seventy years of its existence it has acquired a population considerably in excess of the village by which it stands. The cemetery is one of the Ainest and best kept cemeteries in the state for a village of the size of Woodstock, and the people are justified in being proud of it. A handsome vault was built in the cemetery in 1887. The most striking monument in the cemetery is the Cushman family monument. It was designed and scalped by Warren Cushman, now a resident of Zanesfield, Ohio. It contains the names of the various members of the family, a group of standing figures and busts of several other members of the family. The accompanying photograph gives a good general view of the monument.
THE FIRST SCHOOL BUILDING.
The first school building in the village was a rough log affair built in 1823, followed in 1829 by a brick structure. The latter structure was added to in 1843, and this building continued in use until 186o. In that year the school trustees erected a two story brick building in the western part of the village, the grounds occupying the space between the highway and the railroad. The next building appeared in the latter part of the seventies and was made possible by a legislative act passed in 1877. Joseph Chamberlin was responsible for the passage of the act and, despite vigorous opposition on the part of many farmers, Woodstock saw its fourth school building. This building cost nine thousand dollars, and was first in charge of J. W. Freeman, who was at the head of the schools for nine years. He was followed by Stephenson McConkey, George Waite, Alonzo Smith, J. W. Cross, Thomas F. Johnson, M. A. Brown, I. L. Mitchell, C. C. Kail, ____ Miller, H. C. Cusick and R. A. Conrad. In March, 1893, the school building erected in 1877-78 was completely destroyed by fire and the present building was erected in the summer of that same year. The high school building was erected in 1915, and the Woodstock school district is now as well supplied with buildings and equipment as any school district in the county. Among other teachers prior to the nineties was Evan P. Middleton, now the common pleas judge of the county, who taught in the village during the seventies.
COLLEGE MEN AND WOMEN OF WOODSTOCK.
The state of Ohio is noted for the number and excellence of its colleges and universities. No statistics are
available to show the number of Champaign county people who have attended college; but a list of the young people
of Woodstock who have attended college within the last few years has been compiled by one of the graduates of the
Woodstock high school and later a graduate of Ohio State University. This list is not complete, but it indicates
in a striking way that the present generation firmly believes in higher education. While this record is only for
the Woodstock community, there are many others of the county which can doubtless furnish similar records. Not all
of the appended names of Woodstockians were graduates, but they have at least attended college one or more years.
In the following list, the names of those who graduated are indicated with an asterisk.
The first settlers of Woodstock were opposed to secret organizations and it was not until the decade before the Civil War that the first fraternal society gained a foothold in the village. The Odd Fellows instituted a lodge on October 22, 1850, and erected a brick building in that same year. This building was burned in 1871 and was replaced by the present building two years later. There are traditions to the effect that a lodge bearing the peculiar title of "E. Clamps Vitus" thrived in the village years ago, but its history has disappeared along with the men who conceived its unique name. The Know-Nothings had an organization in the village during the heyday of the political party of that name, and the local organizations were genuine secret affairs - with rituals, grips, passwords, and such other paraphernalia, impedimenta, etc., as are usually associated with secret organizations. Then in later years came the famous, or infamous, according as it may be viewed, American Protective Association. Probably no organization in the country has ever aroused as much discussion as the American Protective Association, and while it lasted in Woodstock it was the means of furnishing plenty of conversation for the loafers around the stores during the long winter evenings. No more honorable organization ever came into existence than the Grand Army of the Republic, and it was but natural that Woodstock should organize a post as soon as the national organization began spreading to the different states. The local post was organized in 1886, but its members have been fast answering the last roll call and now there are only a few left. The Junior Order of American Mechanics has maintained an active organization since it was established.
The first banking institution in the village was a building and loan association formed by L. C. Herrick, A.
B. Howard and George Riddle, about 1870. It lasted for about three years and voluntarily suspended business. The
village was without banking facilities until April 4, 1877, when the Woodstock Bank was organized with A. P. Howard,
president, and George Riddle, cashier. These men operated the bank until 188o, when Moulton & Riddle became
the owners and operated the same until the spring of 1883. For a brief period of nearly four months the village
was again without banking facilities. On October I, 1883, True Martin assumed control of the banking business and
organized the present bank. E. P. Black was chosen the first president, and he was succeeded by D. W. Sharp. After
his death H. D. Martin was elected to the presidency and is the present incumbent. True Martin has been the cashier
since the beginning.
The population of Woodstock had reached a place in 1870 where many of the leading citizens of the village felt
that it would be advantageous to have it incorporated and to this end circulated petitions in order to ascertain
the sentiment of the voters of the village. On March 31, 187o, forty one voters of the village, representing a
total population of two hundred and seventy five within the limits of the proposed corporation, presented a petition
to the county commissioners and on the 30th of the following May the commissioners granted the prayer of the petitioners.
The official proceedings incident to the incorporation of the village are taken from the official record in the
recorder's office, plat book B, p. 32.
A REMONSTRANCE AGAINST INCORPORATION.
To the Hon: The commissioners of Champaign county, state of Ohio, We, the undersigned residents and property holders of Woodstock, Champaign county. Ohio, do humbly remonstrate and protest against the petition now before your humble body praying for the incorporation of said town for special purposes for the 'reason that we think the incorporation is not needed and that we can get along under the present laws of Ohio regulating villages. etc., Woodstock, Champaign county, Ohio, May 2, 1870:
COMMISSIONERS ORDER INCORPORATION.
In the matter of petition for the organization of the incorporated village of Woodstock for special purposes,
a petition was this day presented to the county commissioners signed by thirty or more legal voters on the territory
described therein praying that it may be organized into an incorporated village for special purposes to be known
as the "Incorporated Village of Woodstock for special purposes," which petition is filed in the office
of the county auditor; whereup the commissioners fixed a time for the hearing of said petition for Monday, May
30, 1870, at the hourt house in Urbana. On the 30th day of May, 1870, said petition came on for hearing and after
a careful examination of the petition, map and the objections, the commissioners find that the said petition contains
all the matters required, and that its statements are true, that the name proposed for said corporation is appropriate,
that the limits thereof have been accurately described and that the same are not unreasonably large or small, and
that the map or plat thereof is accurately made, that the persons whose names are subscribed thereto are legal
voters, residing on said territory, that at least 50 qualified voters reside on said territory, and it is deemed
right and proper by the commissioners that said petition be granted. It is ordered that the corporation as named
and asked for in the petition be organized. It is hereby certified that the foregoing is a full and complete transcript
of the proceedings had by us in the above stated matter.
WOODSTOCK IN 1872.
There has been preserved in an atlas of the county published in 1872 a complete directory of Woodstock, and,
what is valuable from a historical standpoint, the atlas contains a plat of the town as it appeared after its incorporation
in 1870, with the names of the owners of the various lots printed thereon. Beginning at the east end of Bennet
street, on the north side, the following names give the complete list of the owners on the north side of the street
to the west side of the incorporation: ____ Lockwood, D. Gifford, E. Cranston, Susan Cushman, C. Cushman, Rian,
W. Casey, D. P. Smith, A. L. McDonald, "Tip" Smith, Carlton & Gowey, M. Sullivan, Universalist church,
N. P. Hewitt, A. Smith.
WOODSTOCK LIBRARY ASSOCIATION.
The Woodstock Library Association was organized at the drug store of George Riddle & Company, on the evening
of May 19, 1874, by the following persons: J. F. Gowey, Rev. T. N. Glover, Dr. L. C. Herrick, Levi Kidder, George
Riddle, N. P. Hewitt, N. W. Chamberlin, Charles Colwell, Samuel Standish, S. D. Fairchild, J. A. McDonald and Miss
A. L. McDonald. According to the bylaws and regulations of the organization the number of stockholders was to be
unlimited, and each share was to sell for five dollars.
The postoffice was established shortly after the village was laid out but no information is at hand to show when it was established or who was the first postmaster. Among the postmasters who have been identified with the office are H. Poland, John Hoisington, C. C. Smith, James Welch, S. M. Overfield, N. P. Hewitt, Walter C. Gifford and S. M. Overfield, the present incumbent, who was appointed November 20, 1909. One rural route serves the rural community from this office. The present postoffice is in the township building.
BUSINESS AND PROFESSIONAL DIRECTORY, 1917.
The following persons and firms represent the business and professional interests of Woodstock in 1917: Frank Mason, auctioneer; Fred T. Crawford, railway agent; Peoples Bank, Woodstock Bank; J. O. Carter, Paul Perry, barbers; Daniel A. Fox, Thomas P. Morissey, blacksmiths; Harry Neal, brick mason; McCoy Canning Co., Warren G. Lincoln, manager; G. H. Clark, M. G. Burnham, C. K. Lincoln, carpenters; Universalist church, Christian church, Catholic mission; Gwynne Clark, Marble Burnham, contractors; Wesley Hardman, C. P. Kimball & Son, Ohio Grain Elevator Company, coal dealers; William H. Hess, drayman; Howard Sharp, drug store; Herbert Clark, resident manager of the Northwestern Ohio Light Company; Ohio Grain Elevator Company; Adams Express Company, Fred T. Crawford, agent; Edgar Borst, Morrissey & Clark, garage; Claypool & Weist, Westfall & Madden, general stores; Samuel G. Louden, grocer; Benjamin C. Vance, harness; C. P. Kimball & Son, hardware; Mrs. Ellen Davis, hotel; Thomas P. Morrissey, implements; Bruce Craig, livery stable; Samuel G. Louden, meat market; Thomas Davies, music teacher; Frank Mason & Son, painter; Linehan & Clark, pool rool; Frank Mason & Son, paper hanger; Samuel Overfield, postoflice; Dr. Howard Sharp, physician; Samuel G. Standish, repair shop; Linehan & Clark, restaurant; Frank Riley, section foreman; O. B. Summers, shoe repair; Howard Martin, George Hann, Henry Westfall, stock dealers; Scott Cushman, truck farmer; Mrs. Lena Woodward, local telephone operator.
VILLAGE OFFICIALS IN 1917.
Mayor, Levi Kidder; clerk, Edward Gifford; treasurer, T. B. Smith; marshall, Daniel Fox; council, D. R. Kimball,
W. G. Lincoln, Michael Powers, B. C. Vance, Warren Swisher; board of education, W. C. Kimball, M. C. Leninger,
T. B. Smith, G. S. McCarty, Edward Guyton.