THIS township was organized in 1810, and then embraced two or three times its present boundaries, but after the organization of Jefferson and Blendon, in 1815 and 1816, it was reduced to its present bounds, which is just one original surveyed township of five miles square, and is designated on all correct maps as township two, in range sixteen, of the United States Military Lands. The fourth or south-east quarter was laid out into one hundred acre lots for the benefit of revolutionary soldiers, holding one hundred acre warrants, and the patents issued accordingly. Quarters number one and two, (north half of the township,) were afterward laid out into sections of six hundred and forty acres, and subdivided into quarter sections, and sold as other Congress lands. The third, or south-west quarter, four thousand acres, was patented to Dudley Woodbridge in 1800, and was in April, 1802, sold and conveyed by Woodbridge to John Huffman, then of Washington County, Pennsylvania, but afterward a well known citizen of Franklin County, Ohio, for one gallon of whisky per acre, that is, for four thousand gallons of whisky, delivered at Marietta, though the consideration named in the deed is four thousand dollars. Mr. Huffman subsequently, about the year 1821 or '22, divided these lands amongst his children.
It is said that Joseph Scott was the first settler in the township, on a lease from Huffman; though near the same time, in the summer or fall of 1802, Adam Baughman, and Samuel Baughman, and one or two others, removed from Pennsylvania to these lands, part of the way cutting the road through the woods as they went. Henry Huffman soon followed, and subsequently 'Squire Patterson and others.
Mr. Samuel Baughman, has been a resident of that township ever since, and whilst his friends and pioneer companions have paid the debt of nature, he is still living, and enjoying good health and all the comforts consequent upon industry and prudent economy.
Amongst the earliest settlers, but subsequent to those above named, were Lorin Hills, Jesse Byington, Gilbert Waters, William Yantes, Abraham Williams, Joseph Moore, and others. The land was not regarded as being of the best quality, but the water was good and the location healthy, and the increase of population regular until it is now densely settled, and the improvements generally good. There has, however, as yet been no flouring mill in the township, but some half dozen or more saw mills. Daniel Kramer erected the first on Rocky Fork about the year 1827 or '28, since which Archibald Smith, Christian Bevelheimer, Daniel Swickard and some others have erected sawmills.
Of religious denominations, the Methodists are perhaps, the most numerous in the township. They have a good brick meeting house, erected about 1837 or '38, in the northern part of the township, called "Plain Chapel," and a good frame meeting house in the town of New Albany, erected about 1847 or '48. The United Brethren are also tolerably numerous. They have a brick church near the center of the township, erected about the year 1836 or '37. The Albrites, German, have a good wooden church building about one mile west from Plain Chapel. The Presbyterians have a small wooden church in New Albany, congregation small.
In 1826, Lorin Hills and Lester Humphrey laid out a town on the Granville road near where New Albany now is, which they called "Lafayetteville," and had the plat recorded, etc., but it never improved, and was finally vacated.
In 1835, Francis Clymer laid out a town on his farm which he called "Mount Pleasant," but this also was a failure, and was abandoned.
In May, 1837, Noble Landon and William Yantis laid out the town of New Albany, not as partners, but one owned the land on one side of the main street, and the other on the opposite side, and they had it all platted together, but each one held or disposed of his own lots at his pleasure. It is now a thriving village, and quite an advantage to the country around. The town is incorporated, and in April, 1856, they held their first charter election, at which the following gentlemen were elected, to wit: S, Ogden, Mayor; C. S. Ogden, Recorder; R. Phelps, Marshal; F. Johnson, J. McCurdy, C. Baughman, A. B. Beem, S. Stinson, Councilmen.
The population of this township, agreeably to the census of 1840, was 1264. In 1850, it was 1561. In 1853, the township contained twelve school districts, and an aggregate of 653 youth between the ages of five and twenty-one years. In 1857, the aggregate of such youth was, as returned to the Auditor's office, six hundred.
There is but one post office in the township of Plain, and that is in New Albany. It was established in 1838, and is named "Hope."
SUCCESSIVE JUSTICES OF THE PEACE.
1810. John Scott and Simeon Moore, elected.
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