Town of Hermon
From Child's Gazetteer of St. Lawrence County
HERMON(1) was formed from DeKalb and Edwards, April 17, 1830(2), as Depeau, and its name changed Feb. 28, 1834. A part was annexed to Edwards, Nov. 17, 1852. It lies south-west of the center of the county and contains 32,276 acres. The surface is generally rolling, except in the south part, where it is broken and hilly. The streams are Elm, Tanner and Carter creeks, all small. Trout Lake is in the south part, and Gardner's Pond, east of the center, has been drained and some excellent land reclaimed. Cedar Lake lies upon the line of Edwards and is mostly in that town. The soil is a sandy loam, interspersed with tracts of sand, and is best adapted to grazing. It rests upon gneiss and white limestone, in which occur some interesting minerals, the principal of which are apatite and hermatite. A vein of the latter extends in a south-west and north-east direction, and crops out at intervals for several miles. Mining operations are in progress under the Buffalo Union Iron Co., who employ about forty men and are removing thousands of tons of the very best ore. Mining is yet in its infancy in this town.
The population of the town in 1870 was 1792, of whom 1,610 were native, 182, foreign and all white.
During the school year ending Sept. 30, 1872, the town contained twelve school districts and employed fourteen teachers. The number of children of school age was 586; the number attending school, 515; the average attendance, 266; the amount expended for school purposes, $3,348.94; and the value of school houses and sites, $4,775.
HERMON (p.v.) is situated on Elm Creek, in the north-east corner of the town, and contains two churches, one hotel, some twelve to fifteen stores of various kinds, several carriage and blacksmith shops, a grist mill, a woolen and carding mill, two cabinet shops, two saw mills and two livery barns. The population in 1870 was 673.
Hermon Village Cheese Factory, situated on Canton street, is owned and managed by Charles Risley. During the past five years the milk from an average of 700 cows has been received.
MARSHVILLE is a hamlet on Elm Creek, one mile above Hermon.
Settlement was begun several years prior to the war of 1812, by James Taylor, who located in the west part, near the line of Gouverneur. George Davis, Philemon Stewart, Ariel Inman and James Farr settled in the town in 1809 or '10, and Rufus Hopkins about the same time. Roger Story settled in town in 1813; German Sutherland, Nehemiah Barker and Milton Johnson, (the latter from Russell,) about 1815; and David McCollum from Vermont, in 1816. Milton Johnson built the first saw mill in 1818, on Elm Creek, upon the site of Hermon village; and a grist mill and distillery were erected by him the next year, at the same place. David McCollum opened his house for the first school, which was kept by Wm D. Moore in the the winter of 1817-18. School was taught the next winter, in the same place, by Wesley McCollum. Hiss Huldah Nickerson taught school in 1826 or '27. The room was warmed in a very primitive manner. An inverted potash kettle with a stove pipe inserted in a hole through the bottom was made to answer the purpose of a stove. Malvina Farr, who was born in 1810 or '11, was the first child born in the town. Peter Sutherland, an infant, is supposed to be the first death, in 1818, though it is asserted that the first death was that of Thomas Farr. The first marriage was contracted July 4, 1821, by Asahel Tryon and Harriet McCollum. The growth of the town was retarded by the war of 1812, and many of the settlers were driven from their improvements by the prevalent fear of invasion. The settlement did not increase with much rapidity until 1822, during which and the three succeeding years considerable numbers came in. A store was opened by Wm Teall in 1823, near the line of DeKalb, and another soon after by Wm . Martin, in Hermon village, which was the first one kept there. The first religious services were held in 1811, by Rev. Mr. Wright, a Presbyterian clergyman and missionary from Massachusetts.
The First Baptist Church of Hermon, at Hermon village, was organized with thirteen members, in January 1818, by a council from Gouverneur, Oswegatchie, Russell and Madrid, and erected its first house of worship in 1849, at a cost of $400. The church will seat 400 persons. The first pastor was Rev. Elder Payne. At present the pulpit is supplied by L. S. Baker. The Society consists of sixty-four members. Its property is valued at $5,000.(3)
(1) This name is derived from a proper name which occurs in the Bible. The word, in its original language, means anathema, destruction. The name of Depeau was derived from that of Francis Depeau of New York, who was extensively interested in the French purchase in Jefferson county, and was changed in consequence of its similarity to the name of Depauville, in that county, which produced an irregularity in the mails. The town embraces the township of Fitz William, in Great Lot No. III, in Macomb's Purchase, except a small portion in the south-east corner, which is annexed to Edwards.
(2) The first town meeting was held at the school house near Nathaniel Kent's, May 4, 1830, and the following named officers were elected: Wm. Teall, Supervisor; Benj. Healy, Town Clerk; Wilkes Richardson, Isaac C. Pool and Silas Williams, Assessors; Martin L. Cook and John Matoon, Overseers of the Poor; Simeon Peterson, Jesse Worden and Shubael Parker, Commissioners of Highways; Wilkes Richardson, Robert Gotham and Harry Tanner, Commissioners of Common Schools; Benj. Healy, Aaron Teall and C. D. Morehouse, Inspectors of Schools; Charles C. Redfield, Collector; Ariel Wrisley and Charles C. Redfield, Constables.
(3) Information furnished by E. E. Brown