Balser Hess, a cobbler, tanner and Revolutionary War veteran, was one of the first pioneers to arrive in Clinton Township. Hess came to Ohio with his family and bought 320 acres of land along the west bank of the Olentangy River. His first house, a log structure, was a common stopping place with travelers. Balser died in 1806 and was the first to be buried on the grounds that became Union Cemetery. (Photo courtesy of Terry Miller.)
Posts Tagged ‘Union Cemetery’
David Beers was another early pioneer with an exciting life story of having been captured and released by the Native Americans. Beers came to Ohio in 1802. Descendents of David Beers still live in the area to the present day. (Photo courtesy of Terry Miller)
Beers had a log house near the intersection of Dodridge and North High Street. The cabin still exists but has been moved to Norwich Avenue. This photo appeared in the December 29, 1904 Dispatch, on the house’s centennial. The people included friends, relatives, and associates of the cabin’s next owner, Conn Baker, and they were reminiscing with him about early Columbus and marking the 100th anniversary of the cabin after the its move and reassembly to E. Norwich.
The Beers family operated a mill which existed until the early twentieth century. For many years the father of the well-known poet John James Piatt operated it. The future poet spent his boyhood days playing about the mill, and some say that the impressions made by its surroundings found expression in his work. The mill was considered to be one of the most picturesque spots in Ohio. Built around 1810, the mill burned in 1902.
There are still vestiges of the mill (foundation stones) below North Street, at the river.
The reason for this gathering is unknown, but it includes several Beers descendants (and likely many who are not related) and was taken about 1905, probably at Olentangy Park. (Photos courtesy of Marty Cottrill)
People like to say that the story of Clintonville starts with the story of Thomas Bull Jr., who came to this area in 1812 with his family from Vermont, by way of Worthington. Bull purchased about 680 acres in Clinton Township, and bequeathed land to his children when he died in 1823. Bull and his family were Methodists and abolitionists. The family graves were moved in March 1910 to Union Cemetery, section “new”, lot 176, across from the flagpole. (Despite the section name, this is in the old area of Union Cemetery on the east side of Olentangy River Road.)
This is the Thomas Bull residence which stood on the east side of High Street between Dunedin and Piedmont. Some of the information about the house is conflicting, but Nancy Pendleton states that Alonson Bull helped to build the house around 1821 and lived there until the mid-1860s. The local Methodist congregation held services in this house until Thomas Bull’s death in 1823. Elias Pegg purchased it, along with its farm, in 1862 and raised his children there. The house was torn down in August 1931. This photo is from the Sunday edition of Cols Dispatch March 5, 1950.
I found this little biography about Frederick Weber (1806-1885) and his son George (b. 1843) in A Centennial Biographical History of the City of Columbus and Franklin County Ohio (Chicago: The Lewis Publishing Company, 1901) pp. 278-280. I admit I have done little research on this Clinton Township family and have not even researched where their farm was located.
Another one of the first families of Clintonville was the Cooke family. According to the family’s history, Roswell Cooke (1764-1827) came to Ohio with his wife and five children in 1800 from Connecticut. His two eldest sons, Rodney and Chauncey, took up land 6 miles north of the state house, their farms adjoining (in the vicinity of Cooke Road and North High Street). They cleared the land and both erected “houses out of round, unhewn logs, with puncheon floors and primitive fire places, with mud-and-stick chimneys.” The brothers lived the rest of their lives on these farms. Family history states that in 1827 they constructed one of the first grist and saw mills on the Olentangy River, which later became known as the Whipp and then as the Weisheimer Mill. They also operated a distillery. (Photo courtesy of Terry Miller.)
Rodney’s son, H.C. Cooke, was born in 1825, and took up residence on the old Cooke homestead at 4243 North High Street. Over time H.C. amassed 300 acres. He was a successful businessman, including in the stock business, and then owned the firm Cooke, Grant & Cooke, contractors in the construction of heavy masonry for railroad and other bridges. He was one of the officers of the Worthington & Columbus streetcar line. (You can click on this map to enlarge it.) (Photo courtesy of Carl Cooke.)
Just a bit more background information. The current name of the company Henry C. Cooke founded is the Fritz-Rumer-Cooke Co., Inc. They are still in business. The Secretary of State’s website states that one of their prior names was the Fritz Rumer Cooke Grant Company, changed to Fritz-Rumer-Cooke Co., Inc. in 1918. The company’s website states that it was founded in 1879 and incorporated in Ohio in 1911, and is still managed by descendants of the Cooke family. (This information courtesy of the Columbus Metropolitan Library.)
Alice Cooke Hess was the daughter of Henry C. Cooke, and worked for some years as a school teacher at the Clinton Heights Avenue School. She married Charles Hess, the great grandson of pioneer, Balser Hess. (The Hess family land formed Union Cemetery.) Alice and her husband eventually lived in the large house built by Henry Cooke at Deland and North High Street shown in my book and on this web site. This is her grave stone in Union Cemetery. (Photo courtesy of Terry W. Miller.)
A view of Union Cemetery from Olentangy River Road, in the late 1930s. (Photo courtesy of the Franklin County Engineers)