History of Pike, Pa.
From: Clearfield County, Pennsylvania and Representative Citizens
By: Roland D. Swoope, Jr.
Published By Richmond-Arnold Publishing Co., Chicago


This township was erected by a decree of the Court of Quarter Sessions of Centre County, to which Clearfield County was then attached for judicial purposes, dated November Sessions 1813, and was named in honor of General Zebulon Pike, an officer in the United States Army, during the War of 1812.

The township is bounded on the north by Pine Township, on the east by Lawrence township, on the south by Knox Township and west by Bloom, Penn and Ferguson Townships.

The township contains many fine and well cultivated farms, also many fine coal and fire clay deposits, which are now being operated on an extensive scale.

The population, according to the census of 1910, was 1671.

The land of Pike township is mostly of a mountainous character, interspersed with narrow valleys and rolling plateaus, varying in elevation from eleven hundred to fifteen hundred feet above the sea level, and presenting many beautiful scenic effects. On the high table lands, and along the river valley, are located some of the most productive farms in the county, and despite the extensive lumbering operations of the past many fine bodies of timber still exist.

Paul Clover was probably the first settler in the township, having arrived in 1797, and built a house and blacksmith shop where the "corner store," in Curwensville, now stands. Thomas McClure, William McNaul, Elisha Fenton, the Blooms, Spencers, Moores, John Smith. Robert Ross, Samuel CaIdwell, William Dunlap, the Hartshorns, Robert Maxwell, Dr. J. P. Hoyt, James McCracken, the Rolls, Hugh Hall, John and William Irvin, Arthur Bell, John Patton, Sr., and Daniel Barrett, were among the early pioneers.

Dr. J. P. Hoyt came to Clearfield county from Halfmoon Valley, in Centre county, about the year 1814, and located at Curwensville. Here he remained for some years, and then removed to a property near Lumber City. He was a man of strict integrity, and by a long life of industry and excellent business abilities accumulated considerable property, which he lived many years to enjoy, dying at the ripe age of ninety-one years.

John Patton, Sr., was born in Philadelphia, in 1783; moved to Curwensville in 1828; he served as associate judge of the county for five years; was justice of the peace for a number of years, and died in 1848, aged sixty-five years.

Jason Kirk, Sr., came to Clearfield county about 1812; settled in what is now Penn township, at that time in Pike, and was one of the most respected citizens, living to an old age, and leaving a large family.

Samuel Caidwell was one of the first settlers, arriving about 1804. He was an influential citizen, and left a considerable family.

John W. McNaul and his wife, Sarah, nee Ferguson, emigrated from the northern part of Ireland to this country in about 1793. Mr. McNaul was a Scotchman. On landing in this country they resided, for a short time, in Chester county. thence removing to Lock Haven, and later living in Nittany Valley. Of their eight children, Margaret, James, John and Ann were born in Ireland, William. Alexander, Zachariah, and Mary, were horn in this country. WilliamMcNaul was a tanner, and first started business on his own account in Halfmoon, Centre county, where he married Hannah Way. In the fall of 1813, he, in company with Dr. John P. Hoyt (then a young physician practicing in Halfmoon), started on horseback, one snowy morning, to cross the mountains and see the famous new town of Curwensville, recently laid out by John F. Curwen. Early in the following spring William McNaul, with his family, moved to Curwensville, occupying a log house located on the lot where the residence of Mrs. Martha Thompson now is. He soon proceeded to erect a house on the site of the present McNaul residence. He also built the tannery adjoining. His children were: Robert, Zachariah, Jane, Urbane, Lydia, John and Mary. The McNauls belong to the Society of Friends, and are most highly respected both at home and abroad.

The Hartshorn family is one of the oldest, and is widely connected, and as a class are model, respectable citizens. Benjamin Hartshorn, Sr., was born in 1765. He married Isabella McClure, and they emigrated from Maryland to Centre county in the year 1796. In 1806 he nioved his family to Clearfield county, living on the land now known as the Jonathan Hartshorn farm. This was then nothing but woods, and the family endured untold hardships before a home could be provided. The children were: Margaret, Anna, Jonathan, William, Benjamin, Nancy, Eliza and Mary Ann, all of whom married, and whose families reside in or near Curwensville.

About the year 1750 the family of Spencers emigrated from England to America. In 1808 Joseph Spencer, Sr., moved from Northumberland county to Clearfield county. His family consisted of three sons-Samuel, Joseph, and Jesse-and three daughters. From Benjamin Fenton he purchased four hundred and forty acres of land, which was in its primitive state, excepting two acres which was cleared and had a small log house upon it. The tract was situated between the present site of the village of Pennville and Susquehanna River, about one mile south of Pennville. This was divided into four farms, the father retaining one and setting apart a farm of corresponding size for each of his three sons. Most of the family were and are consistent members of the Society of Friends, and are eminently respectable and prosperous citizens.

The Blooms, as a class, are worthy citizens; almost all farmers, and are the largest or one of the largest families in Clearfield county. William Bloom, Sr., was born in Germany, in 1752 and emigrated to this country at an uncertain time, reaching Clearfield county in 1801. Previous to this he had been in the State of New Jersey, also in Centre county, Pa. During the Revolutionary War he served for some time in the ranks. In 1778 he married Mary Metter, who was born in 1754. The pioneer Bloom came to Clearfield county alone, and settled one mile up the river from Curwensyule. Pike township is the stronghold of the Blooms. Probably two-thirds of the family are located here.

Andrew Moore, Sr., emigrated to America from Ireland in 1688, and settled in Chester county, Pa. James, the second son of Andrew Moore, Jr., was born January 8, 1760, at Sadsbury, Chester county. He married in 1785, Lydia, daughter of Abram and Anna Sharpless. In 1795, they removed to Halfmoon, Centre county, and in 1810, James, with his son Jeremiah and daughter Lydia, started on foot across the mountains, and in due time arrived at the site of Pennville, in Penn township, Clearfield county. He purchased three hundred and seventy-five acres of land; built a cabin, and commenced clearing; the rest of the family following. He was a consistent member of the Society of Friends, and trained up his family in that religious faith.

In 1809 Dr. Samuel Coleman settled on a tract of three hundred acres north of the site of Pennville. Dr. Coleman was a Scotchman, and had no family. He gave the name of "Grampian Hills" to his place, remarking that it reminded him of the renowned hills of the same name in Scotland. He held office about the time of the organization of 'the county, being clerk to the county commissioners. His grave is on the farm of Colonel Miller, of Penn township. At the last meeting of the "County Medical Association" a committee was appointed to solicit subscriptions toward erecting a monument to the memory of the pioneer physician of Clearfield county.

The first assessment of the township was made in 1814, and contains the following names: Robert Askey, David Allen, George Brown, Alex. Caidwell, Sam'l Cochran, Jesse Cookson, Wm. Bloom, Jr., Joseph Bloom, Caleb Bailey, Benj. Bloom, John Brink, Wm. Bloom, Peter Bloom, John Bloom, Isaac Bloom, John Bell, Arthur Bell, John Bennett, Benj. Carson, Dr. Samuel Coleman, Amos Davis, Wm. Dunlap, Nimrod Derich, David Dunlap, Caleb Davis, Jonathan Evans, Peter Everhart, Joseph Edding, John Fullerton, David Ferguson, John Ferguson, Jonah Griffith, John Haughenberry, Hugh Hall, Benj, Hartsborn, Wm. Hepburn, James Hayes, Sami. Johnson, Mark Miller Jordon, John Kyler, Jason Kirk, John Kirk, David Liggit,. Elijah Meredith, Sam'! Miller, Robert Maxwell, Jos. McCracken, Robert McGee, Robert McCracken, John McCracken, Thomas McClure, Thos. McCracken, James McCracken, Daniel McCracken, James Moore, Job Ogden, Job Parker, Merchant; Abraham Passmore, James Reed, Alexander Reed, Jr., Alex. B. Reed, Wm. Reed, John Rolls, blacksmith; Geo. Shaffer, Geo. Shaffer, Jr., Wm. Smith, Nicholas Shaw, John Stuggart, Philip Stuggart, Joseph Spencer, Joseph Spencer, Jr., Sam'l Spencer, Francis Severas, Wm. Tate, James Woodside, David Walls, John Wrigley, merchant; Geo. Williams, weaver; Gideon Widemire, Geo. Welsh, Jacob Wilson. Town lots in Curwensville were assessed at $12.50; cows, $10; horses, $30; unimproved land, and timber at $1 per acre; farm land at $2 to $3 per acre. The early settlers experienced many trials and privation. The roads were but little more than trails through the woods. Indians frequently visited the locality and usually encamped on the bank of the river. An Indian burial-place was located at the mouth of Anderson Creek, and before the floods had made inroads on the lands, stone arrow-heads, and tomahawks were occasionally found.

In 1819 Mathew Caidwell cut out the first road from Curwensville to Bloomington. The principal towns are Bloomington and Olanta. (For Curwensville borough see succeeding chapter).

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