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CHAPTER XXVI.

                                                                                                      

THE

BOROUGH OF WEATHERLY

By Dr. J. B. Tweedle

 

PAGE 780

 

            The borough of Weatherly is located on the banks of the Black Creek, and on the line of the Lehigh Valley Railroad, about fourteen miles northwest of Mauch Chunk.  The place was originally called Black Creek from the color of the water in the stream on which it is situated.  (The color of the water was attributed to vegetable origin, as the head-waters of the stream came from dense hemlock swamps.)  When the first post-office was established here the name was changed to Weatherly, named after a Mr. Weatherly (one of the directors of the Beaver Meadow Company), a watch- and clock-maker by trade, who, some of the old citizens say, promised to present the place with a town-clock in recognition of the honor conferred upon him by the bestowal of the name, but which promise has never yet been fulfilled.

The ground upon which the town is built was originally owned by Samuel S. Barber and John Romick, Sr., who held warrantee deeds.  Their object in purchasing the land was to carry on lumbering and farming, as it was heavily timbered and a pretty good soil.

The first settlement was on the Romick tract.  Benjamin Romick built a saw-mill and house on the west side of the Black Creek, opposite the present Lehigh Valley Depot.  He put in charge of this mill a man by the name of Featherbee.  In the year 1826 he moved to this place with his family.  A stable was fitted up, and Featherbee and his family moved in there, and Romick in the house, which stood where the store on the west side now stands.  The first lumber sawed in this mill was for the building of a school-house and church in what was later known as the Turnpike District, at the Spring Mountain Hotel.  Shortly after Romick had moved here a Mr. Scheckler with a large family of boys came to the east side of the creek and built a log house near the site of the present East Weatherly School-house.  These boys worked at the mills and in the woods.  Soon after 1830, Mr. Romick built a larger house on the lower side of his other house, and opened it as a tavern. The surveyors and engineers who had charge of the survey of the Beaver Meadow Railroad made this house their stopping-place.  John Lomison, who later married the daughter of Benjamin Romick, was one of this party, and here met his future wife.  This tavern was kept by Mr. Romick until the sale to the Beaver Meadow Company and his removal to Quakake Valley.

Asa Packer had purchased part of the Barber tract, and about 1835-36, John Smith came to the place to take charge of clearing the land.  A mill was built by them about a mile below Black Creek Junction.  A store was started by them at Black Creek (now Weatherly, below the Gilbert House), which is now used as a stove- and tin-store.  A tavern was soon opened by Mr. Tubbs, in a building on the side of the Gilbert House.

Samuel Ingham, who was president of the Beaver Meadow Railroad and Coal Company, with others, had conceived the idea of manufacturing patent locks at this place, and built a frame building in which to carry on the work.  Upon the removal of the Beaver Meadow shops from Beaver Meadow to this place the project was given up, and the building was used for the machine-shops for the company.

In 1843, A. H. Van Cleve & Co. opened a store on the site of the present store of W. W. Blakslee.  The soil here is mostly red shale, and the surface of the country is very uneven; in fact, there is scarcely a level street in the borough.  The borough is bounded on the north by the Spring Mountain, east by Brushy Hollow Creek, south by the Broad Mountain, and west by Packer township line.  Up to the present time no minerals have been discovered within the borough limits, and, judging from the appearance of the surface, there are none here.  In the eastern part there is an immense bed of sand and river stones, which would indicate that it was once the bed of an immense lake, fed by the Lehigh River or some other stream, and which has broken through the …

 

Page 781

 

…Broad Mountain at Penn Haven, leaving the bed dry.  The principal stream of water in the borough is the Black Creek, which is a continuation of the Hazle Creek from Hazle Creek bridge to Black Creek Junction, where it joins the Quakake, and takes that name, which it retains till it empties into the Lehigh River at Penn Haven.  The place consisted of but a few small houses until the Beaver Meadow Railroad was completed to this point, and it was found necessary, in order to overcome what was considered at that time a very heavy grade, to construct two inclined planes, each about half a mile in length, making this the stopping-point for the engines that took the coal from here to Mauch Chunk.  The road continued from the head of the planes to Beaver Meadow, where the company had their coal-mines, and at first located their machine-shops and foundry.  But they soon found that it was too inconvenient, and such hard work to get their engines up the planes for repairs that they decided to move the shops to Weatherly, which was done about the year 1840, and gave the town a permanent existence.  The shops were not very extensive, and the building of a locomotive in those days was considered quite an important event.  The existence of the place depends entirely upon the shops located here, which have grown, under the present able management of Master-Mechanic Philip Hoffecker, from a small concern turning out one small engine a year to a capacity of completing at least one a month, and that of the heaviest, strongest, and fastest class made in the country.

The Beaver Meadow Division of the Lehigh Valley Railroad, of which Weatherly is the centre, has been under the able management of Hon. A. G. Brodhead as superintendent almost since its existence.  The shops were first under the charge of Hopkin Thomas as master-mechanic, who was succeeded by the present manager, Philip Hoffecker.  The car-shops have undergone the same change,--from an old, rickety shed to a capacity of making all kinds of cars, and building at least twenty-five new cars and repairing two hundred old and broken ones per week.  They employ two hundred hands, and have been under the able management of Daniel Rouse, assisted by his son, E. G. Rouse, since their existence, and are considered second to none in the possession of the company.

The only manufacturing in the borough of Weatherly is carried on by the Lehigh Valley Railroad Company.  In 1839 it was decided by the Beaver Meadow Railroad and Coal Company to move their shops to Black Creek (now Weatherly), and in 1840 the first car-shops were built at the foot of the inclined plane.  These were used till swept away by the freshet of 1850, and rebuilt the same year.  In 1855 the company built a car-shop (thirty by seventy feet) on the site of the present location, and the next year removed the old shops to the new one and added them to it.  These shops were used from that time till they were totally destroyed by fire, which occurred on the morning of July 8, 1880.  New frame buildings were commenced in August, the same year, and completed during the year 1881. 

The car-shops are sixty by two hundred and fifty-six feet; blacksmith-shop, bolt- and engine-room, forty by one hundred and seventy-six feet, containing twenty fires; stone boiler-house, eighteen by thirty-six feet, with brick stack fifty feet in height.  An average of two hundred men are employed in these shops.  In 1883 one hundred and seventy-five coal-cars were manufactured, forty-five thousand nine hundred cars repaired, and much other work.  Daniel Rouse is superintendent. 

In 1839, Ingham & Co. built a frame building on the west side of Black Creek, opposite the present depot, for the purpose of manufacturing patent locks.  Upon the decision of the Beaver Meadow Railroad and Coal Company to remove to Black Creek (now Weatherly), they purchased this building and moved the machine shops into it, where they remained till the completion of the new shops, in 1869.  In 1866 the present roundhouse was built, having tracks for sixteen locomotives.  The stone machine-shops were commenced in 1867, and completed in 1869.  They are one hundred and fifty by two hundred and fifty feet in dimensions.  There are in the employ of the company, at the machine-shops and on the road, four hundred and twenty-five men.  Five locomotives were built in 1883.

The town was a part of Lausanne township until 1863, when it was made a borough.  It then contained about five hundred inhabitants, with one church and two schools.  At present the place supports five churches, --a Presbyterian, Methodist,  German Reformed, Lutheran, and Catholic, with a fair prospect of establishing an Episcopal.

 

PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH.

--The first church service of this denomination was held in the year 1838, by the Rev. Daniel Gaston, who resided at Beaver Meadow.  In 1841 the first schoolhouse was built and used for services.  Mr. Gaston served here until 1844.  In 1845, Rev.. J. G. Moore was installed as pastor, officiating until 1848.  He was succeeded by Rev. David Harbison.  In 1852 the present church building was commenced.  In 1852, Rev. John Baker took charge, and in 1853, October 9th, the church was dedicated. In 1854, Rev. J. W. Porter was in charge for a while, then in the same year Rev. John Armstrong took charge, and remained until 1859, when the church was regularly organized as the First Presbyterian Church of Weatherly.  Rev. John Darrah took charge and was pastor until 1861.  From 1861 to 1864, Rev. Armstrong officiated.  During 1864, Rev. John Johnson filled the pulpit.  In 1865, Rev. James M. Soloman took charge.  December, 1865, Rev. Daniel Deruyelle became pastor.  In the fall of 1867 the building was remodeled and used by the Presbyterians alone.

 

Page 782

 

Previous to this other denominations had worshiped in it.  About this time the Methodist Church was completed, and that denomination used their own building.  In 1871, Rev. Daniel Deruelle resigned, and Rev. William Webster was installed, and served until 1875, when Rev. J. M. Wilson took charge until February, 1878.  The church was then supplied by ministers sent by the Presbytery until 1881, when Rev. J. P. Moffat, the present pastor, took charge.  The society owns a fine church building, a large parsonage, all paid for, and is out of debt.  The members number about one hundred and twenty-five.

 

ST. NICHOLAS CATHOLIC CHURCH.

--The corner-stone of this church was laid Oct. 25, 1874, Rev. E. V. McElhone, pastor.  The building, completed in 1875 and paid for, lost five thousand dollars.  Rev. McElhone remained in charge until 1878, when he was succeeded by Rev. Hugh McManus, who was in charge until 1882, when the present pastor, B. J. Conway, was appointed.  Rev. Conway is taking steps toward the erection of a parsonage near the church.  A cemetery has been opened near the church.  The Catholic population of the borough numbers about three hundred and seventy-five. 

 

THE LUTHERAN CHURCH was built in 1876.  It was supplied by Rev. P. T. Hennigan and Rev. Broegel until 1883, when the Rev. Louis Smith became its pastor.  The present membership is about forty-five.

 

THE REFORMED CHURCH was built in 1875, at a cost of three thousand five hundred  dollars.  The first pastor was Rev. J. Fuendling.  He was followed by the Rev. M. H. Mishler, who served about four years, and was succeeded by the present pastor, Rev. A. M. Masonheimer.  The present membership is about one hundred.

 

HOTELS.

--The first license for a tavern in what is now the borough of Weatherly was granted to Benjamin Romick about 1831.  He kept on the west side till about 1835-36.  Next, William Tubbs opened a tavern on the site of the Gilbert House.  He was succeeded in 1843 by Charles Gilbert, who kept the tavern till about 1848, and was followed by Charles H. Williams, who remained till his removal to Rockport in 1857.  It has been kept since by Joseph Fields, J. S. Keiser, Lewis Drumber, George Keiser, and P. H. Stofflet, the present proprietor. 

The Carbon House was built in 1850-51 by Joseph W. Leadenham, who kept it from that time to 1865, when he sold it to Thomas Dunn, from whom it passed successively to Peter Kline, William Kamerzel, and James F. Purcell, who is the present landlord and proprietor.

The house now known as the Packer House was built in 1856 by Aaron Grimes as a dwelling.  It came into possession of Levi Hartz in 1868, who fitted it up as a hotel, and has kept it as such from that time.  The Verzi House, forty by forty feet, two stories in height, with a mansard roof, was built by Joseph Verzi in 1882, and opened soon after its completion by the proprietor, who still keeps it.

 

SCHOOLS.

--The first school-house was erected in 1841, near the site of the present school-house.  This was moved to the property of Charles Gilbert, who made a store-house of it, and which is still used as such.  A new school-house was built on the site in 1855, about twenty-five by thirty feet in dimensions, and two stories high.  William Prescott built it, at a cost of seven hundred dollars, exclusive of the foundation,--completed, it cost one thousand dollars.  This served its purpose, and was torn down to make way for the present building, which was erected in 1869 (costing six thousand dollars), and is still used.  In 1883 a frame building, forty by seventy feet, was erected for school purposes, at a cost of five thousand five hundred dollars, fitted with all modern improvements and school furniture.  This is situated in West Weatherly, on the west side of Black Creek.  Professor William H. Rauch is principal of all the schools. 

The school directors have been as follows:

1851.--Joseph Stetler, Daniel Miles.

1852.--R. D. Stiles, Charles Gilbert.

1853.--Charles H. Williams, Philip Hoffecker.

1854.--James Lewis, Samuel Hoover.

1855.--R. D. Stiles, Thomas Harleman.

1856.--John Smith, C. H. Williams, Jonas Koons.

1857.--James Lewis, Charles Gilbert, N. Houser.

1858.--R. D. Stiles, Samuel Harleman.

1859.--Samuel Hoover, W. W. Blakslee, Thomas Harleman.

1860.--James Lewis, Daniel Rouse, Daniel McDonnell.

1861.--W. W. Blakslee, John Hoover.

1862.--John Smith, P. S. McDermott, Peter Kline.

1863.--H. B. Berryhill, Daniel Rouse.

1864.--No record.

1865.--(Borough of Weatherly.)

1866.--W. W. Blakslee, J. P. Buch.

1867.--Amos Derr, Daniel Rouse.

1868.--Daniel Dourell, Philip Hoffecker.

1869.--Valentine Smith, Samuel Harleman.

1870.--Samuel Croll, M. W. Kelly.

1872.--Samuel Harleman, S. E. Schoonover.

1873.--Nathan Houser, B. Kingle.

1874.--Daniel Rouse, C. H. Dewitt.

1875.--Ephraim William, John Hines.

1876.--L. F. Wagner, Samuel Croll, Samuel Harleman.

1877.--W. W. Buch, E. R. Enbody.

1878.--H. B. Hoffecker, George W. Lentz.

1879.--J. G. Eadie, J. W. Hunter, H. S. Rinker.

1880.--G. W. Miller, Jacob Miller, Levi F. Wagner.

1881.--Samuel Croll, C. H. Dewitt.

1882.--H. S. Rinker, L. H. Latham.

1883.--J. C. Streeter, C. J. Hoffman, Daniel Washburn.

 

The civil list of the borough of Weatherly is as follows:

 

Page 783

 

1866.--Daniel Rouse.

1867.--Lewis Kingle.

1868.--William C. Kamerer.

1869.--Nicholas Hauser.

1870.--J. W. Hunter.

1872.--J. G. Eadie.

1873.--Levi Hartz.

1874.--Lewis Kingle.

1875.--Joseph D. Meyers.

1876.--W. W. Buch.

1877.--Robert Dunlap.

1878.--Sheldon Bodwell.

1879.--Edward Faust.

1880.--William Vandyke.

1881.--Adam Hutshafer.

1882.--E. C. Wilson.

1883.--John Hoover. 

 

COUNCIL.

1866.--Samuel Hoover, Nicholas Houser.

1867.--Samuel Gangwere, Edward Harleman.

1868.--Levi Hartz, John Brong.

1869.--D. C. Stiles.

1870.--George Garter.

1872.--Robert Tait, Edwin Harleman.

1873.--John Hines, Adam Ulshafer.

1874.--Joseph Buch, Daniel Fleckman.

1875.--Levi Wagner, George hartz.

1876.--Samuel Croll, W. W. Blakslee.

1877.--C. A. Buch, William Vandyke, Sheldon Bodwell.

1878.--Horace Peters, Henry Fisher.

1879.--Prosper Warz, Jerry Stout, George Saylor.

1880.--John Meiser, Griff Bachman.

1881.--A. Hoble, S. Stewart.

1882.--E. G. Rouse, Thomas Young.

1883.--Samuel Gangwere, D. S. Wagner.

 

JUSTICES OF THE PEACE.

The first justice of the peace elected after the organization of the borough was John Watson, Esq., 1865.  The next one was William Kemerzel, 1867; after him came Dr. J. B. Tweedle, elected in 1870; next came Lewis Kinkle, 1872; then J. W. Hunter, two terms, and in office at present; also G. H. Jones, two terms, and in office.

 

 PHYSICIANS.

--The first regular physician that located here was Flemington Webster, a  graduate of Jefferson Medical College, about 1857, although the place had been visited by Dr. A. B. Longshore, of Hazleton, Dr. R. Leonard, of Mauch Chunk, and Dr. J. B. Longshore, of Beaver Meadow.  Webster left in the spring of 1865, when Dr. J. B. Tweedle, who, having served his term of enlistment in the army of three years and some months, attended a final course at the College of Physicians and Surgeons of New York City (it being the medical department of Columbia College, of the State of New York), and graduating from there, located at Weatherly in the spring of 1865, and has been in continuous practice here ever since, having been the railroad surgeon for the Lehigh Valley Company for eighteen years. 

Dr. P. H. Latham, of the Baltimore College, located here in 1879, and has been here since that time.  Dr. C. I. Hoffman, a graduate of Jefferson College of 1870, located here in January, 1882, and is here yet. 

Dr. C. J. Stamm, a graduate of Vermont Medical College, has just located here (December, 1883).

On account of the dangerous employment of the workmen here there are a great many accidents, and consequently quite a number of surgical cases.

 

LODGES.

--The first lodge instituted here was Ancient Order of Druids, organized in 1865, but not in existence at present.  Next came the Honora Council, No. 120, O. of U. A. M., organized Jan. 30, 1867, and is also out of existence. 

Then followed Sons of Temperance, Weatherly Division, No. 35, organized March 2, 1867; is not in existence at present.

Next came the Lodi Lodge, No. 80, K. of P., organized May 26, 1868.  Present membership, about seventy.

Then the Mountain Temple, No. 58, Temple of Honor, organized March 1, 1869, which is not in existence.

Next came the Lodge I. O. of O. F., No. 691, organized Nov. 16, 1869, and now has about seventy members.

Then the Onoko Tribe, No. 235, I. O. of R. M., the 30th Sun of the Hot Moon, G. S. D. 386; has now about fifty members.  Then the Washington Camp, No. 179, P. O. S. of A., was organized Dec. 21, 1872.  It now has nearly one hundred members. 

Next the Keiser Karl Lodge, No. 346, Order of Harugari, was organized April 29, 1872, now having about forty members.

The Carbon Lodge, No. 1740, Knights of Honor, was organized Aug. 7, 1880, and now has about forty members.

And, lastly, the Grand Army of the Republic, Col. James Miller Post, No. 273, organized Aug. 11, 1882, and at present has about forty members.

 

POST-OFFICE.

--The first post-office was established in Weatherly in 1848, with R. D. Stiles as postmaster, who served eight years, till 1856, when Charles H. Williams was appointed, who served one year.  From 1857 to 1865, John Smith served.  He was followed by Reuben Horn, who served till 1868.  From 1868 to 1869, Jeremiah Kistler served.  He was followed by the present postmaster, Samuel Harleman.

 

MISCELLANEOUS.

--A late industry is the whortle-berry business, carried on by Mr. Charles Cassler.  During the summer of 1883, Mr. Cassler shipped four thousand six hundred and ninety-three bushels, making sixty-two car-loads.

The shipment of sand is rapidly increasing.  In 1883 one thousand tons were shipped, and one firm expects to ship three thousand tons this year.

 

END

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From

The History of the Counties of Lehigh & Carbon, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania,

By

Alfred Mathews & Austin N. Hungerford

Published in Philadelphia, Pa., in 1884

 

Transcribed from the original in the July, 2002 by

Vincent E Summers
[3X-great-grandson of David Weatherly Sr., namesake of the town of Weatherly]

 

Web page by

Jack Sterling

August 2002