From Child's Gazetteer of St. Lawrence County
the year ending
EDWARDSVILLE(4) (p.o.) is
situated on the
BRIER HILL (p.o.) is a hamlet
situated south-west of the center, four miles south of
survey of the town was made preliminary to its settlement in 1799, and its
settlement was commenced a few years later, by Col. David Ford, a native of New
Jersey, and brother of Nathan Ford, the pioneer of Oswegatchie, as agent for
the proprietor, G. Morris(5). He located on the site of
suffering was experienced by the inhabitants of this town in consequence of the
cold seasons of 1815, ’16, and ’17, which were unfavorable for cereals of any
kind. They were reduced almost to the verge of starvation. During
the year 1818, and until the time of harvest in 1819, almost fabulous prices
were offered for grain and flour by those who were so fortunate as to possess
the means. Many lived to a great extent upon esculent roots, and one
family is said to have lived almost entirely on turnips for more than a week,
when they were relieved by a grist from the new wheat of that year, which was
threshed and sent to mill almost as it was cut. Mr. A. Wheeler Church,
son of Daniel W. Church, says that during this trying period he was asked to
take supper on one occasion, and the only edibles which graced the table, or
which the family possessed, were pumpkins and milk. In a few years, says
Mr. Church, the yield of wheat was so abundant that the merchants at
A naval engagement between the Julia of the United States navy and the Earl of Moira of the British navy, took place opposite Morristown in July, 1812, in which they latter was worsted.
Presbyterian Church, at
Chippewa Street Congregational Church, was organized with nine members
in 1827, by Rev. Hiram Johnson of
The First Universalist Church at Brier Hill, was organized Feb 14, 1859, by Rev. H. H. Baker, the first pastor, and erected a place of worship in 1859, at a cost of $1,250, the one it still occupies. The church will seat 250 persons. The Society numbers 75 members. Its pastor is Rev. D. L. R. Libby. Its property is valued at $2,500.(10)
The Union Church at Brier Hill was built in the summer of 1859, by the joint effrorts of the Baptist, Lutheran, and Wesleyan Methodist societies and residents outside of these churches, each contributing one-fourth towards defraying the expense and each retaining one-fourth interest in it. Its management is entrusted to nine trustees, two from each of the religious societies and three from those outside. Revs. Reuben Jones, Baptist, C. Francisco, Lutheran, and M. Johnson, Wesleyan, were the first ministers of the respective denominations who preached in the church. It is now occupied and regular appointments are held by Revs. Samuel Young, Congregationalist, Silas W. Young, Lutheran, M. Delarme, Wesleyan, and C. M. Arnold, Episcopal Methodist. Two services are held each Sabbath.(11)
(1) Named from Gouverneur Morris, the former proprietor. It originally embraced No. 9, or Hague, of the Ten Townships.
(2) The first town officers were, David Ford, Supervisor; David Hill, Town Clerk; John Canfield, Paschal Miller and Horace Aldrich, Assessors; Henry Hooker, Collector; John Hooker, Daniel W. Church, and John K. Thurber, Overseers of the Poor; Wm. Swain, Alex. B. Miller and Wm. R. Ward, Commissioners of Highways; Powel Davis and James Burnham, School Commissioners; Erastus Northum, John Grannis and Alex R. Miller, School Inspectors.
(3) This name is a slight modification of the one originally assigned (Morrisville) in 1799, when the town was surveyed and a village plat laid out on the site of the present village, by Jacob Brown.
(4) Named from Jonathan S. Edwards, the first post master. The name originally assigned when the village plat was laid out in 1799 was Marysburgh, by which name it is distinguished on early maps.
(5) Dr. Hough says David Ford, “First made an actual settlement about 1808”.
(6) Mr. Michael Cooper, who was bound out to Mr. Alex Miller, a Presbyterian minister, in 1814, and is still a resident of the town, says that Henry Ellenwood became a resident of the town in 1806, and Henry Harrison and Ephraim Story, previous to that year. The date given in the text is obtained from Hough’s History of St. Lawrence and Franklin Counties. The care and accuracy that work evinces in other particulars incline us to adhere to it.
(7) Information furnished by Joseph Cooper.
(8) Information furnished by J. E. Ingham, deacon.
(9) Information furnished by Rev. S. W. Young
(10) Information furnished by Seward Ackerman
(11) Information furnished by W. R. Fitch