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Clearfield County


Clearfield County Pennsylvania

Present and Past



Thomas Lincoln Wall



Preface and Introduction



This page was last updated on 23 Apr 2011





Clearfield County Pennsylvania

Present and Past



Thomas Lincoln Wall

Ex-Supervising Principal

Boggs Township Schools


Library Edition

Published by Author


Copyright 1925


T. L. Wall



Transcribed for the Clearfield County PAGenWeb Project by

Ellis Michaels


 Preface and Introduction







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(See Page 9)

The old Boggs Fording in the middle distance on left, Nickel Works on right.







     This book was written primarily for use in schools, but there have been so many requests for its publication in a library edition that the author has ventured to comply, for if "men are but children of a larger growth" it is hoped that the grown-ups may find interest and profit in the same work.

     Often those scenes and activities that are in our immediate vicinity and with which we are intimately connected seem so trivial and so common-place that we give them but scant attention. Yet the people and material things that are close to us influence us most, and their recollection in later life adds much to our enjoyment and helps us in many ways.

     This is the author's excuse to adults for writing about our county. In doing so, it has been the aim to so brighten the picture with incident, story and description that the reader will not tire. The effort has been to condense bushels of raw material into quarts of understandable matter, that may have every-day-life value.

     The book is not intended to be exhaustive, but rather stimulative. If this purpose is accomplished the author's efforts will be abundantly repaid. There is left unrecorded a wealth of material that should be arranged, organized and made available to the student of our county's present and past history.

     To encourage this work, there should be a real, live working historical society formed in the county to accumulate, verify and store in an accessable fire-proof building, data, relics and documents bearing upon the history of the county, not only of the past, but of the history making that is now going on, and which every one seems too busy to chronicle.

     The writer has received' valuable information and help






in different ways from so many individuals in the county and outside of it, that it would be impossible to name all, therefor, I can but collectively thank one and all most heartily for their help and interest. The Pennsylvania State Library has been very helpful.

     As source materials, the following publications have been consulted: Lenape Legends, by Brinton; Maginnis's Otsinachsin; Caldwell's Atlas of Clearfield County; History of Clearfield County, by Lewis Cass Aldrich; Twentieth Century History of Clearfield County, by Swoope, and McKnight's History of Northwestern Pennsylvania. Also files of the DuBois Courier, Raftsman's Journal, Public Spirit, County Review and Clearfield Republican, as well as valuable information direct from the Smithsonian Institution at Washington, etc., etc.








     A survey of the century and a quarter since the pioneers shouldered their guns and axes and blazed the first trails into and through Clearfield county shows marvelous achievements along many lines. This present work as its title implies is devoted to a chronological account of the settlement, growth and accomplishments of Clearfield county and its people, present and past. It will be conceded by those familiar with the subject that it has never been presented in any work with the fullness and breadth of treatment it deserves.

     There have been numerous futile attempts to induce those deemed competent to marshal and compile the data relating to the history of Clearfield county while some of the pioneers or their immediate successors were living, thereby preserving many interesting facts and incidents that are now lost or seriously obscured and difficult to verify. It was in an effort to supply to the present and future generations these important and interesting facts and incidents relating to the people and the development of the county that the author undertook this work.

     Starting, as he does, with the present development, showing in condensed form much of the high state of civilization we have attained throughout every section of the county, and tracing it back by careful survey to the first entry of the pioneers into what was then a vast wilderness of deep forests inhabited by wild life of all types indigenous to this climate, requiring courage of a high order and forceful resourcefulness to carve out homes for their families. Their history is replete with many tales of adventure and severe trials with adversity and deprivations of every character,







showing the strong type of people who first began the development of out present comfortable state of civilization.

     Tales of adventure and exploitation, however thrilling or well told, of the stranger or of distant lands and people, have no such interest as those of our own neighbors and friends or their forbears on our native heath.

     Nor can the stranger gather and tell these tales with the same sympathetic interest as one who has lived among them and is thus enabled to discern the true and the false. We are, indeed fortunate in having them presented, (even in condensed form), by one on whom all can rely for integrity and fairness. The forbears of the author have been reputable citizens of the county for more than a century, and his environment and occupation have enabled him to obtain much of the material by personal contact, observation and careful study.

     After perusal of these facts it can readily be seen that Clearfield county need make no apology for her past performances, for many of the sons and daughters of the sturdy pioneers have taken high positions in the affairs of the world, filling them with credit and honor; others have attained eminence in the marts of trade and in manufacture and have developed well the rich natural resources of the county, and established it firmly as an active, progressive business center, and its future outlook is bright and assuring, well worthy of our patriotic pride.







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