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As this book goes to press, a pageant is going forward 
on Belmont Field representing some of the most dramatic 
episodes in the course of Philadelphia's history. Excellent 
as it is and lively as are its presentations of historic fact, 
it needs but the seeing eye and a knowledge of the Colonial 
homes the following pages aim to impart to convince 
one that we live in the midst of a richly historic setting — an 
enduring pageant if you please so to regard it — unsur- 
passed for interest and beauty in any part of our country. 
The scarcity of historic remains and ancient buildings in 
so many parts of America makes it incumbent upon us to 
cherish and value the good things that are left to us. 
It is doubly incumbent upon all, whether Philadelphians 
or not, to regard reverently the visible links that bind us 
to the stirring events of our early national existence 
with which all Americans are concerned, the stable wit- 
nesses to the vigorous life of those sterling forebears 
whence we are sprung. A fuller knowledge of the places 
treated herein will clothe the men and women of bygone 
days with a living reality for us and breathe new life into 
an honourable past. 

It is matter for sincere regret that some of the noble 
places, such as Pennsbury or Fairhill, that have unfor- 
tunately been demolished, could not have been described, 
but the limits of reasonable space forbade and it was 
deemed better to focus attention on the houses still 

It has been the privilege of the authors to know and 
enjoy, almost from infancy, many of the Colonial houses 



(Icscrihcd in the ensuing pages, and the pre2)aration of this 
vohmie has been peenharly a kibour of love. They would 
share their pleasure more broadly and trust that their 
readers nmy come to regard these ancient homes of worthy 
folk with a like affection. 

Great thanks are due to all who have rendered assist- 
ance by supplying information or granting access to 
family records and papers. The writers take this occasion 
to express their deep gratitude and appreciation. They 
likewise acknowledge their indebtedness to Thomas Allen 
Glenn's " Colonial JMajisions " for material in the chapter 
on Graeme Park. They feel, too, that a special note of 
recognition is due the staff of the Pennsylvania Historical 
Society for their unfailing courtesy and helpfulness. May 
the readers have as much pleasure in perusal as the writers 
had in preparation. 

Harold Donaldson Eberlein 
Horace Mather Lippincott 

Philadelphia, October 5, 1912. 








Families: Stamper, Bingham, Blackwell, Willing. 



Families: Powel, Baring, Rawle. 


Families: Hill, Physick, Randolph, Keith. 


Families: Lewis, Fisher, Wharton. 


Families: Shippen, Wistar, Tyson. 


Families: Reynolds, Dunkin, Morris. 


Families: Meany, Price, Potter, James. 



Family: Hamilton. 


Families: Bartram, Eastwick. 


Families: Coultas, Gray, Thomas. 


Family: Penn. 


Families: Macpherson, Arnold, Shippen, Williams. 




Family: Gallowat. 


Families: Soute. Rawle, Piitsick, Randolph. 


Families: Coleman, Barclay, Franks, Paschall, Lewis, Wharton. 


Family: Peters. 


Family: Roberts. 


Famiues: Wynne, Smedley. 


Families: Lewis, Wilcox, Cruickshank, Ross, Bhinton, Eyre, 


Families: Ellis, Harrison, Thomson, Morris, Vadx. 


Family: Wayne. 


Families: Moore, Pennypackeb. 


Families: Vaux, Bakewell, Wetherill. 


Families: Morgan, Evans, Penn, Audubon, Wetherill. 


Family: Logan. 


Families: .\kmat, Logan. 

GRlMliLKTMORl'E 217 

Family: Wistkk. 




Families: Matthews, Wister. 


Families: Deschler, Perot, Morris. 

WYCK 286 

Families: Jansen, Wistar, Haines. 


Family: Johnson. 


Family: Chew. 


Family: Johnson. 


Families: Turner, Ashmead, Hill, Lee, Craig, Smith. 


Families: Rittenhouse, Care, Pratt, Mason, Lowber, Wei^h, 


Families: Shoemaker, Livezet. 


Families: Morris, West, Watmough, Sergeant, Reed, Wentz. 


Families: Morris, Hitner, Sheaff. 



Families: Morris, Lewis. 


Family: Emlen. 


Families: Heijt, Pawling, Pennypacker. 


Families: Keith, Graeme, Fergusson, Smith, Penrose. 



THK I\ V 305 

I'AMii.irs: Wall, Shoemaker, Bosler. 

URY HorSK 312 

Families: Tayu)H, Fisuer, Crawford. 


l'AMiLit:a: Pashiall, Morris. 


F.viiiLiE.s: Chalki-ev, James, Yorke, Wetherill. 

WALN GRO\^ 334 

Family: Waln. 


Families: Stiles, Lukens. 

AND.\LUSL\ 343 

Families: Craig, Biddle. 


Famiues: Bickley, Wharton-Bickley, Drexel, Emmet. 


Families: Pemberton, Morris. 



INDEX 357 



Whitby Hall, Kingsessing (North Front) Frontispiece 

Houses Typical of Old Philadelphia — Front and Lom- 
bard Streets — Fourth and Spruce Streets 14 

Bedchamber at Upsala 20 

Stocker House, 402 South Front Street 28 

Bishop White House, 400 South Front Street 28 

Town House of Nicholas Waln, 254 South Second Street . . 28 

Evans House, 322 DeLancey Street 46 

Blackwell House, 224 Pine Street 46 

PowEL House, 244 South Third Street 52 

Fireplace and Over-mantel in Bedchamber of Powel House 54 

Wharton House, 336 Spruce Street 60 

WisTAR House, Southwest Corner of Fourth and Prune 

(Locust) Streets. Cadwalader House to the Left. . 64 

Morris House, 225 South Eighth Street 70 

Randolph House, Doorway of Number 321 South Fourth 

Street 80 

House of Rev. William Smith, D.D., First Provost of the 
University of Pennsylvania, Northeast Corner of 

Fourth and Arch Streets 80 

The Woodlands 86 

Bartram House, on the Schuylkill in Kingsessing 94 

Whitby Hall, Kingsessing (Western End) 98 

Parlour at Whitby Hall 102 

Whitby Hall (South Front) 106 

Stairway at Whitby Hall 106 

Mount Pleasant, from Driveway approaching East Front 114 

Parlour at Mount Pleasant 116 

Mount Pleasant, ON THE Schuylkill. The River Front .. . 118 

Great Chamber on Second Floor at Mount Pleasant. . . 120 



solitldk, on thk schuylkill 126 

Laurel Hill, on the Schuylkill 126 

woodfohd, near the ridoe road 134 

Wynnestay, Lower Merion 154 

Waynesborough, Paoli 170 

Parlour at Waynesborough 178 

Living Room at Waynesborough 178 

Vaux Hill — Fatland Hall 196 

Loudoun, Germantown 200 

Mill Grove, Lower Providence 200 

Stenton 204 

Parlour at Stenton 208 

James Logan's Cradle and Bed at Stenton 208 

The Hallway at Stenton 212 

Grumblethorpe, 5261 Germantown Road 222 

Vernon, Vernon Park, Germantown 222 

Perot — Morris House, 5442 Germantown Road 226 

Johnson House, 6305 Germantown Road 238 

Wyck, Germantown Road and Walnut Lane 238 

Cliveden, from Germantown Road 242 

Doorway of Cliveden 246 

Hallway at Cliveden 252 

Cliveden, Germantowt^ 252 


Doorway at Upsala 256 

Parix)ur at Upsala 256 

Carlton, Indian Queen Lane, Germantown 260 

Gateway at Glen Fern 266 

Spring Bank, Germantown 266 

Glen Fern, on the Wissahickon Creek 274 

Hope Lodge, Whitemarsh 277 



The Hallway at Hope Lodge 278 

The Highlands, Whitemarsh 282 

Graeme Park, Horsham 298 

Sir William Keith's Lifting Stone at Graeme Park 300 

Ancient Fire Back at Graeme Park 300 

Parlour at Graeme Park 302 

Great Chamber on Second Floor at Graeme Park 302 

Box Garden at Ury House, Fox Chase 314 

Cedar Grove, Harrogate, Northern Liberties 318 

Bedchamber at Cedar Grove 322 

Kitchen at Cedar Grove 322 

Chalkley Hall, Frankford 326 

Port Royal House, Frankford 338 

Waln Grove, Frankford 338 

Andalusia, on the Delaware, Bensalem Township, Bucks. 343 
Pen Rhyn, on the Delaware, Bensalem Township, Bucks . 345 


OUSES, like men, have personality. 
They have it, especially old houses, 
to a marked degree, reflected to be 
sure from human association, but 
running the gamut of variety as 
fully as their human makers who 
inwove so much of their own indi- 
viduality into the fabrics they builded of stone and brick 
and wood. So closely identified with man and his doings 
are they, that it is no exaggeration to say that the history 
of the houses of a neighbourhood will give more clearly 
than any other medium an insight into the history of the 
men who lived there. 

As houses are the visible records and crystallised his- 
tory of a nation's social life, as they reflect somewhat of 
the state and substance of their owners, so may we gain 
more intimate knowledge of epochs and men from a closer 
acquaintance with their abodes, just as a naturalist can 
reconstruct the tenant of a shell from a study of its form 
and structure. 

The story of a single house is ofttimes the history in 
small of all the country roundabout. It is only by study- 
ing history in small that we shall ever know its full 
meaning. It is only by marking well the homely 
things bound up with the daily life of the men aforetime 
that we shall ever see the great facts of history in their 
true light and realise the full extent of their significance 
for us. 

The day is now happily past when tales of battles and 
sieges, the trumpet-and-drum episodes of the drama of 



existence, are alone held of sovereign worth in writing his- 
tory. From every side comes the demand to know what 
maimer of men they were that wrought the deeds they 
did, their conmion relations to one another, how they tilled 
the soil, how they traded, how they ate and dressed, how 
they worked and how they played, how they gave and re- 
ceived hospitality, in short, how they lived; and unless 
these questions can be answered, history has done less than 
half its duty. 

Any material is to be welcomed that will help us to 
understand more fully the social life of a given period, for 
after all, that is what counts most. All other phases of 
a nation's history — political, economic, industrial, or con- 
stitutional — are in a great measure the outcome, the par- 
ticular manifestations of it. 

Albeit the glamour shed by picturesque distance 
invests the brocades and laces and towering, plumed 
turbans of the ladies and the powdered queues and 
gold-bedizened waistcoats of the men vnth a roman- 
tic charm, we must, nevertheless, realise that there 
was, too, a fustian and ozenbrig side to the life of former 

With all this homely side of life the story of Colonial 
homes is so inseparably joined that it is the fittest point 
of contact we can choose for cultivating a more sjinpa- 
thetic and intimate acquaintance with the men and women 
of })ygone generations, an acquaintance surely not to our 
damage and mayhap to the great profit of our manners 
and morals. Without giving ourselves over too much to 
retrospection, we may well enquire whether or not the 
plan and governance of our lives nowadays are wholty as 



we would have them, whether we have not lost some- 
thing that our forefathers possessed, and whether we 
might not to good purpose pattern our behaviour, our 
ideals, our standards, more after the broad, generous, 
well-rounded scheme of life and open hospitality of 
the past. 

At this distance of time, at any rate, we can get a 
good perspective and more truly appreciate these men 
and women, long departed, with their sins and follies, 
their goodness and their truth, their deeds good and evil, 
in short, all their roles prescribed in the drama of life — 
all things that make for the final crystallisation of char- 
acter and cause us now to look back on them with rever- 
ence or tender charity, loving and honouring them for what 
they did well, and leniently passing over the ill. If truth 
be stranger than fiction, surely the romances, the love af- 
fairs, the brave deeds, the joys and sorrows, and all the 
different events in the lives of these men and women who 
trod the same streets we tread, who knew and loved the 
same familiar scenes we know and love, and with whose 
descendants we daily talk, ought to hold us enthralled far 
more than the padded lay-figures and figments of mere 
fiction, however excellent it be, that we eagerly hearken 
to with itching ears. 

To the student of the social aspect of history, there 
is no more fertile neighbourhood than that of Penn's 
" greene country towne " where so many early houses 
remain to-day as enduring memorials of the most 
elegant period in Colonial life. One is at once embar- 
rassed with the wealth of material that presents itself 
and a selection is only reached by the co-ordination of 



interesting and important things in connexion with each 

No portion of America is blessed with rarer natural 
beauty or more agreeable diversity of surface than East- 
ern l*ennsylvania, and we owe to the Founder not only this 
fortunate location but the quality of those who settled 
upon it. " Thy God bringeth thee into a good land," he 
exclaims, " of brooks of water, of fountains and depths 
that spring out of valleys and hills, a land whose stones 
are iron, and out of whose hills thou mayest dig brass." 
How the soft beauty of the Delaware must have appealed 
to him as he ascended it! The meadows on either side 
were covered with grass or reeds while strips of moderately 
high land, upon which grew the virgin forest, came through 
these meadows here and there to the water's edge. Nu- 
merous large creeks stretched backward into the wild in- 
terior, tempting the explorer at every turn. The charm 
of the landscape was the deep rich green of the grass, 
the dark soft soil, where everything seemed fat and fer- 
tile, and the great quantities of game in the air, on 
the shore, and on the surface of the water. It hardly 
needed persecution at home to attract settlers to such 
a land of promise, and to Penn's sagacity in choosing 
and encouraging men of solid worth and artisans of 
skill as its first people is due the quick prosperity that 
came to it. 

These industrious people in the wilderness, three thou- 
sand miles from home and help, had to win the battle for 
existence before they could pay much attention to the 
arts that cultivate and refine. Thus were established the 
shipyards and textile industries that endure to-day and 


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that soon brought to Philadelphia a commerce second 
to none among the seaports of the Colonies. Trade with 
the East and West Indies, as well as with Europe, poured 
gold into the coffers of her merchants and brought af- 
fluence and culture at an early stage of her career. The 
chief wealth of her most considerable citizens was almost 
invariably derived from i^rofitable shipping ventures. At 
the time of the Revolution, the city was the greatest in 
the country. " No other could boast of so many streets, so 
many houses, so many people, so much renown. No other 
city was so rich, so extravagant, so fashionable." 

Among the features that impressed visitors from dis- 
tant lands was the fineness of the houses. Sometimes 
parts of the woodwork and building materials were fetched 
overseas, although the skill of the resident artisans was 
of no mean order, as their handiwork proves to-day, and 
the master carpenters of the city in 1724 composed a 
guild large and prosperous enough to be patterned after 
" The Worshipful Company of Carpenters of London " 
founded in 1477. James Portius, whom William Penn 
induced to come to his new city to " design and execute 
his Proprietary buildings," was among the most active 
of the carpenters' company, and at his death, in 1736, 
gave his choice collection of architectural works to his 
fellow-members, thus laying the foundation of their pres- 
ent valuable library. In 1745 was published a book of 
directions for joinery, from a perusal of which we may 
gather that both the art of proportion and technical pro- 
ficiency were to be expected from our local craftsmen. 
We have, too, abundant evidence that our native archi- 
tects — some of the ablest were wholly amateurs — pos- 



sessed knowledge and iihility by no means contempti- 
ble. To Doctor Kearsley we owe Christ Church and to 
Andrew Hamilton, the State House. In fact, some archi- 
tectural knowledge seems to have been considered a nec- 
essary part of a gentleman's education. To these was 
added the influence of the Quakers for simplicity, stability, 
and usefulness. 

Not the least important aim of this volume is to direct 
attention to the fact that much of the best Colonial do- 
mestic architecture in America is to be found in this part 
of the countrv and that, furthermore, the houses are still 

ft ^ 

in their original state to all intents and purposes. This 
record is emphatically not a description of buildings that 
once were but are now demolished; it is a description of 
buildings as they actually are to-day. Some publications 
that have essayed to treat of this subject, after chronicling 
the charms and braveries of some fine old house, immedi- 
ately thereafter tell of its demolition; others speak of the 
houses in much the same terms we should expect to find 
on a tombstone or a bronze memorial tablet; here the en- 
deavour has been made to clothe the houses and the peo- 
ple that lived in them with the warmth and colour they 
really possessed. 

INIoreover, a wealth of history, not merely local but 
national, is embodied in the ancient seats of Philadelphia 
and the neighbourhood and incidents profoundly affecting 
the destiny of the country have taken place within or 
near})y the houses described in this volume, so that its 
sphere of interest is not bounded by local metes. The 
figures i)rominent in the annals of Colonial times and the 
fathers of the American Commonwealth were frequent 



actors on the Philadelphia stage of events and, in fact, 
not a little American history was made in Philadelphia 
by Philadelphians. The Free Library of James Logan, 
the Medical School of the University of Pennsylvania, 
the Law School of the University of Pennsylvania, the 
Pennsylvania Hospital, the American Philosophical 
Society, the Academy of the Fine Arts, and Peak's Mu- 
seum were successfully established in Philadelphia before 
there were any similar attempts elsewhere. The English 
Bible and Testament, Milton, Shakespeare, and Black- 
stone were all reproduced for the first time in America in 
Philadelphia, and it is an interesting indication of the keen- 
ness of literary perception that the earliest book written by 
Thackeray to be given to the world first appeared in the 
same city. The first protest against slavery in this coun- 
try came from Germantown Friends' JNIeeting in 1688, 
and the earliest abolition society in the world was organ- 
ised in Philadelphia in 1774. The Declaration of Inde- 
pendence and the Constitution of the United States were 
written and adopted here, and the discoveries of Franklin 
carried his name to the remotest parts of the civilised 
world. Robert Morris managed the finances of the Revo- 
lution, Stephen Girard the War of 1812, and Jay Cooke 
the Civil War. The locality furnished a throng of pictu- 
resque characters of lesser note but very human and en- 
gaging — Phineas Pemberton, Thomas Chalkley, Judge 
Moore, Provost Smith, Nicholas Wain, Judge Chew, 
Judge Peters, Anthony Wayne, Jacob Hiltzheimer and 
many more. 

A few years hence this work could not be produced, 
for much of the material contained herein has never been 

2 17 


coniiiiittcd to writing and cannot be found anywhere else. 
It lias been imparted verbally by people in advanced 
years — tlie traditions and recollections of an older genera- 
tion rapidly passing away. You all still know some of 
them. They speak of their family and of their cousins 
to tlie remotest generation, and quote their grandfathers 
as oracles, alongside the sages of Plutarch. Do not smile 
at them, but observe them as they enter a room or speak 
to a servant. Do not think their ideas of old-time cour- 
tesy and Iiigh-breeding are provincial. It is the fashion 
nowadays to proclaim against this aristocracy of culture, 
refinement, and gentleness. Have we substituted any- 
tliing better for it, or are we ruled more justly? We are 
working so hard at being republicans ^\ith our " ives," 
" ists," and " ettes," and we consider ourselves " as good 
as any and better than most." Perhaps in an odd mo- 
ment we mav find time for the bow, but we feel it is at 
most an imitation — theirs was the reality. 

Although Philadelphia was the largest and the most 
imj)ortant city in the American Colonies from the middle 
of the eighteenth century onward, it was a small place 
as we nowadays reckon size, and civic life had an inti- 
mate cliaracter that we ma5% perhaps, find it hard to un- 
derstand. ELverybody knew everybody else and every- 
l)0(ly knew everybody's else business. According to 
Doctor Schoepf, the German traveller who made a tour 
of the States just after the Revolutionary War, the 
built-up portion of the city was, for the most part, com- 
prebended between the Delaware River on the east and 
Seventh Street on the west, Christian Street on the south, 
and Poplar on the north, this including a large portion of 



the districts of Southwark and Northern Liberties. Even 
between these limits, there were many unoccupied lots 
that were not built upon until years afterward and the 
houses frequently had large gardens not only in the rear 
but at the side as well. 

Within this small metropolis, far smaller half a cen- 
tury before, there were always two distinct types of so- 
cial life to be found side by side — the life of the staid and 
sober Quaker element and, diametrically opposed to it, 
the gay, we might almost say, roystering life of the 
" World's People." For a refreshing bit of contemporary 
description we cannot do better than quote the itinerary 
of Dr. Alexander Hamilton, penned in 1744: 

I was shaved by a little, finical, humpbacked old barber, who 
kept dancing around me and talking all the time of the operation, 
and yet did his job lightly and to a hair. He abounded in com- 
pliments and was a very civil fellow in his way. He told me he 
had been a journeyman to the business for forty odd years, not- 
withstanding which he knew how to trim gentlemen as well (thank 
God) as the best master and despaired not of preferment before 
he died. 

Hamilton goes on to say that the shops were opened 
at five o'clock in the morning, that the Governour's Club, 
a society of gentlemen, met at the tavern every night and 
conversed upon various subjects, and that the conversa- 
tion on one occasion when he was present was upon the 
English poets and Cervantes. Imagine such a state of 
affairs in the clubs nowadays! He complains that the 
summer heat was excessive, but in the next line adds that 
there was a pump of excellent water every fifty paces 



Tliere were brick })avciiieiits, painted awnings, and many 
of the houses had balconies, a fashion that is returning 
with modern Georgian architecture. The one pubhc clock 
of the city struck the hours but was blessed with neither 
index nor dial-plate. His picture of the tap-room of the 
inn at which he stayed on the evening of his arrival is 
highly characteristic. 

A knot of Quakers there talked only about the selling of flour 
and the low price it bore. They touched a little upon religion, 
and high words arose among some of the sectaries, but their blood 
was not hot enough to quarrel, or, to speak in the canting phrase, 
Iheir zeal wanted ferA'ency. 

He quaintly observes that the Quakers were the richest 
and the people of the greatest interest in the govern- 
ment and that they chiefly composed the House of Assem- 
bly, and then he remarks that, " They have the character of 
an obstinate stiff-necked generation, and a perpetual 
plague to their governours." 

In one respect Friends and " World's People " w^ere 
precisely alike. One and all, they dearly loved eating 
and drinking, and not infrequently " gormandized to the 
verge of gluttony." A glance at any of the old diaries 
proves this fully. Here is one characteristic entry: 

" tliis morning most of the family were busy pre- 
paring for a great dinner, two green turtles having been sent to 
Jolmny — We concluded to dress them both together here and 
invited the whole family in. We had three tureens of soup, the 
two shells baked, besides several dishes of stew, with boned turkey, 
roast ducks, veal and beef. After these were removed the table 


3 > 







was filled with two kinds of jellies and various kinds of pudding , 
pies and preserves ; and then almonds, raisins, nuts, apples and 
oranges. Twenty-four sat down at the table." The next entry 
states that " my husband passed a restless night with gout." 

Hospitality of bed, board, and cup have always been 
prominent features of Philadelphia life. This is fully 
attested by William Black, the secretary of the Virginia 
Commissioners when they visited Philadelphia in 1744. 
He tells in his diary how they were met at the Schuylkill 
River, on the Sunday evening of their arrival, by a party 
of gentlemen among whom were Richard Peters, the sec- 
retary of the Province, Robert Strettell, Andrew Hamil- 
ton, and several other substantial citizens, who received 
them "very kindly and welcomed them into their Province 
with a Bowl of fine Lemon Punch big enough to have 
Swimmed half a dozen of young Geese." Passing on into 
the city they were introduced to the Governour at the 
State House and " were presented with a Glass of Wine." 

The visit of the Virginia Commissioners was the occa- 
sion of endless eating and drinking and conviviality all 
round, both in private houses and at the inns where it 
was the custom of the times to do much of the entertain- 
ing. However strong heads might be, they could not 
always remain unaffected by the fluids imbibed, and one 
old Philadelphia worthy, who, as was the wont, had gone 
into a friend's house shortly after a wedding to drink 
punch, records that he there met several of his friends 
and got " decently drunk." Now what " decently drunk " 
may mean it would be hard to say. The reader may de- 
cide for himself. 



To return for a moment to William Black, he tells in 
his diary how he went one evening to call on a merchant, 
a townsman of his, whom he had not seen for some years 
until that forenoon. 

I staid till after 11 and parted, he making me Promise 
to be no Stranger while I staid in Town, of which there was no 
great fear, as he kept a Glass of Good Wine, and was as free of 
it as an Apple tree of its Fruit on a Windy Day in the month of 
July. I grop'd my way to where I Lodged after having Butted 
against some Posts on the Sides of the Pavement, which kept 
me in the Road ; about the mid-hour I got to Bed, where I in- 
clined to K't myself rest until iNlorning. 

It is only fair, however, to say that at this time there 
was little or no attempt at lighting the streets except on 
one or two of the principal thoroughfares. 

Another visitor of nearly the same period, one Alex- 
ander jMackraby, seems to have experienced the same diffi- 
culty in trying to persuade his legs to follow a straight 
course in the homeward way after an evening spent in 
the convivial company of the officers of the Royal Irish 
Regiment, then (1768) stationed in Philadelphia. Speak- 
ing in a letter of the colonel of that body he writes: 

there never was such a set of topers as the officers of his regi- 
ment. The mess rooms at the barracks are something like Circe's 
cave out of which no man ever returned upon two pegs. 

Fox hunting, horseracing, cock-fighting, bull-baiting, 
and sundry other sports of that ilk were freely indulged 
in by Philadelphians of the eighteenth century, while 



their corporate social tastes were represented by such 
clubs as The Colony in Schuylkill, the Gloucester Fox 
Hunting Club, in which the First City Troop really 
originated, and others of similar nature. From 1754 on- 
ward, theatrical entertainments were of occasional occur- 
rence and, though severely frowned upon by the stricter 
element, were nevertheless well patronised. These per- 
formances were given, for the most part, in the old theatre 
on South Street above Fourth, which was the first build- 
ing expressly erected for the purpose, when the old build- 
ing farther down South, or Cedar Street as it was then 
called, was no longer sufficient for the purposes for which 
it had been altered. 

The roads on the outskirts of all Colonial cities were 
intolerably bad, and on occasions of sudden rain, the 
doughty Washington, always fond of theatrical entertain- 
ment, and many others of Philadelphia's elite had to 
plough their way from bemired carriages through seas of 
mud. Perhaps the men realised that there were pleasant 
features even to these disadvantages, for many a damsel 
found herself more carried than supported during the 
troublous approach. 

Cider frolics, barbecues, turtle dinners, and other gas- 
tronomical diversions without number enlivened the days. 
Another element of social intercourse was the family vis- 
iting that went on and was particularly in vogue among 
the Friends at the time of Monthly, Quarterly, and 
Yearly Meetings, when whole families would pay visits of 
several days' duration to other families. 

It must be borne in mind that the more intellectual 
side of life was duly represented as well as the grossly 



material clcinents of eating, drinking, and frolicking. An 
incessant flow of wit and humour was sustained by such 
men as Judge Peters and Nicholas Wain, with many more 
whose names there is not space to mention. The eigh- 
teenth century seems to have been a period especially rich 
in humourists and wits. It was not like the preceding 
century when the bitter religious discussions that were 
everpvhere rife prompted the adherents of each " ism " 
to hurl full-mouthed vituperative epithets at their oppo- 
nents. Polemical vituperation ranked high in their es- 
teem as an engine of salvation, and thundering anathemas 
with fluent abuse were often mistaken for wit and seemed 
to usurp its place. Later, however, a broader tolerance 
induced men to forego the exhilaration of indulging in 
religious Billingsgate, and wit and humour flourished 
apace and enlivened the festive board with scintillating 

The daily life of the town was focussed at the old 
Provincial hall in the marketplace at Second and High 
Streets. Here was the gaol and here were those much 
dreaded but eff*ective instruments of correction, the pillory, 
stocks and whipping post. Here monarchs on their acces- 
sion were proclaimed, here wars were declared, here from 
the balcony new Governours addressed the people over 
whom they were appointed to rule, and here the Royal 
Arms of England were displayed. Elections here took 
place and here the Provincial Council sat. Back of the 
Provincial hall the market-sheds or shambles stretched 
away westward occupying the whole middle of the high- 
way. On Tuesday and Friday evenings the citizens were 
apprised of next day's market by the pealing of Christ 



Church bells which on these occasions were known as the 
" butter bells." 

The markets and their wares were justly famous and 
were always especially remarked by visitors to the city. 
The ladies went to market themselves and at such a time 
of day as would shock their great granddaughters. One 
gay gallant from a sister colony, having a curiosity to 
see the markets, tells us that, early one morning, he 
jumped from his bed designing long before to have been 
at the marketplace. He got there by seven and 

liad no small Satisfaction in seeing the pretty Creatures, the 
Young Ladies traversing the place from Stall to Stall, where they 
could make the best Market, some with their maid behind them 
with a Basket to carry home the Purchases. Others that were 
designed to buy but trifles, as a little fresh Butter, a Dish of 
Green Peas or the like, had Good Nature and Humihty enough 
to be their own porters. 

As to the servants just mentioned, they were not sel- 
dom the cause of trouble. While many were faithful and 
efficient, there were enough that sadly tried their masters 
and mistresses. In 1769, one newly arrived Englishman 
writing home says: 

You can have no idea of the plague we have with servants on 
this side of the water. If you bring over a good one he is 
spoilt in a month. Those bom in the country are insolent and 
extravagant. The imported Dutch are to the last degree ig- 
norant and awkward. The negroes are stupid and sulky and 
stink damnably. We have tried them all round, and this is the 
sum total of my observations : the devil take the hindmost ! 



Xotwithstaiiding vexatious domestics and sundry an- 
noyances from the baser sort, that had to be remedied by 
recourse to stocks and pillory, existence in the city was 
both comfortable and pleasant. Life, even among the 
strictest of Friends, was not as rigid and hard as some 
would have us suppose. 

\\'iiat with the fortnightly assembly dances, dinners, 
fox-hunting, punch drinking, tea-parties, horseracing, oc- 
casional theatrical entertainments and sundry other amuse- 
ments, life in eighteenth century Philadelphia did not 
wear an aspect of altogether drab-coloured monotony. 



ISHOP WHITE spent all his early 
married life in the house at 402 
South Front Street, now used by 
St. Peter's Parish for mission work. 
In fact, he lived there until he 
was elevated to the Episcopate, when 
he built himself a larger house in 
Walnut Street above Third, on the site now occupied 
by number 309. Having an independent income suffi- 
cient to maintain an elegant style of living, he had also 
a country-seat called Brookland, a farm of forty-eight 
acres, near Philadelphia on Islington Lane, a beautiful 
plantation and, in summer, the scene of such " hospitality 
as became a bishop and gentleman." 

During the last half of the eighteenth century and the 
first part of the nineteenth, probably no man in Phila- 
delphia was more revered and trusted than Bishop White, 
not only by the religious body of which he was the head 
but by all the citizens in general. He was regarded with 
a warmth of affection that led everyone, irrespective of 
religious affiliation, to speak of him as " our bishop." 
By his great good sense, moderation, and tact he tided 
over many awkward places in the affairs of the infant 
nation. The house on Front Street just below Pine is 
so changed now that the good Bishop, could he come back 
and see it, would scarcely be able to recognise it as his 
former place of abode. The old shell, however, remains 
and is in staunch condition. 

To write of Bishop White and not speak somewhat 



of Christ Churcli would be impossible. As a child he 
worshipped there, through prime of manhood and vener- 
able old age he gave his constant ministrations to its con- 
gregation. From the earliest times its people, the Church 
Party as they were called to distinguish them politically 
and religiously from the Friends, were, for the most part, 
the gayest and most aristocratic in the Province. As a 
body they were certainly the best dressed and most strik- 
ing in appearance, according to one diarist of the middle 
of the eighteenth century, a stranger who had travelled 
much in the Colonies and was competent to judge. He 
says that when he attended Christ Church on Sunday 
morning he saw a larger number of well-dressed people 
than he had ever seen together before. Certain it 



that there was a marked distinctive difference in the 
apparel of the different religious bodies at the time. 
*' The Episcopalians showed most grandeur of dress and 
costume — next the Presbyterians — the gentlemen of 
whom freely indulged in powdered and frizzled hair." An 
entry in the minutes of the vestry in 1701 makes us doubt 
whether the church was always kept properly cleaned so 
as not to soil the brave attire of both belles and beaux. 
The sexton having applied for an increase of salary, it 
was agreed to give him £20 a year on condition that he 
was " to wash the church twice a year, and sand it at 
Easter and September; and also sweep the church once 
every two weeks." 

The music, as everywhere else in the Colonial period, 
was wretchedly poor. " The singer, then called the 
clerk, was Joseph Fry — a small man with a great voice, 
who, standing in the organ gallery, was wont to make 


' > , ' 'j 

) • > 

5 i > " 



— y 








« • * « 


the whole church resound with liis strong, deep and grave 
tones." After the Revolution, when there was a ripple 
of improvement in the general musical situation in the 
new-born Republic, the efforts of church musicians to raise 
the standard were apparently not looked upon with fa- 
vour. Joseph Fry, or his successors, did not " make a 
cheerful noise before the Lord " to the taste of the con- 
gregation, for in 1785 the vestry passed a resolution " that 
the clerks be desired to sing such tunes only as are plain 
and familiar to the congregation; the singing of other 
tunes, and frequent changing of tunes, being to the cer- 
tain knowledge of this vestry, generally disagreeable and 

Music of another kind, the music of the bells, seems 
to have been more to the popular liking. The bells were 
always being pealed, so that the German traveller. Doctor 
Schoepf, said that you would think you were in a papal 
or imperial city — there was always something to be rung. 
From the time that the " ring of bells " — the first in the 
Colonies — was first hung, their metal throats were busy 
proclaiming all sorts of things from the anniversaries of 
King Charles's Restoration, Guy Fawkes's Day, and the 
King's birthday, down to bi-weekly markets or the arrival 
in the Delaware of the Myrtilla, Captain Budden's ship, 
in which the peal had been brought out from London. 

While Philadelphia was the seat of the Republican 
Court, the grandeur of Christ Church congregation was 
increased. The arrival of the worshippers in damasks 
and brocades, velvet breeches and silk stockings, powdered 
hair and periwigs, was a sight to see. Some came afoot, 
others drove in chairs or clattered up in cumbrous, awe- 



some coaches, witli two or four horses, while Washington's 
eqiiipa«i,c, drawn by six cream-coloured steeds, added the 
final touch to the imposing spectacle. 

13 ut apart from all this state and pomp, there was the 
humbler side of church life. There were the Sunday af- 
ternoon catechisings when the good Bishop heard the 
children of the congregation and their " servants and ap- 
prentices " repeat their " duty towards God " and their 
" duty towards their neighbour," and expounded to them 
such things as a Christian ought to know and believe to 
his soul's health. Not long ago there were gentlemen 
still living who remembered that, as children, they had to 
stand in the aisle at St. Peter's and repeat their catechism 
to the venerable white-haired bishop. 

The public career of Bishop White is so well known 
that it would be carrying coals to Xewxastle to dwell on 
the subject. His private life, how^ever, is not so familiar 
to most and it forms a valuable commentary on the ways 
of the time in w^iich he lived. As might be expected, the 
Bishop took a lively interest in everything concerning 
civic life. One instance of this was his active membership 
in the Hand-in-Hand Fire Company, one of those useful 
volunteer organisations that did such yeoman service in 
the preservation of property before the formation of a 
regular fire department. 

On occasion of fire, the members, who were pledged 
to the common service and served without reward, rushed 
to the scene of conflagration, dragging the engine and 
hose-cart by ropes. The engine was pumped by hand. 
Those who were not pum])ing or playing the hose busied 
themselves carrying the leathern buckets, six of which 



each member bound himself to keep in his house. These 
old buckets and the fire-hats belonging to the members of 
the several companies are now held in high esteem as 
honoured relics in the families of their descendants. Among 
Bishop White's fellow-members in the Hand-in-Hand 
Fire Company, at one time or another, were Andrew 
Hamilton, Provost Smith, Francis Hopkinson, Benjamin 
Chew, the Reverend Richard Peters, the uncle of Judge 
Peters, Jared Ingersoll, John Cadwalader, and Samuel 
Powel. The rolls of other fire companies bore names 
quite as distinguished. Hand engines and hose-carts were 
kept at various convenient places. For a time some of 
the apparatus was housed in the lower part of the old 
market-house at Second and Pine Streets. 

A glimpse of a still more intimate phase of the Bishop's 
character we get from an interesting account of his earlier 
life, long before he appeared in any public capacity, left 
by a lady slightly the prelate's senior, who had been his 
constant playmate from early childhood. 

She says: 

Billy White was born a bishop. I never could persuade him 
to play anything but church. He would tie his own or my apron 
around his neck for a gown and stand before a low chair which 
he called his pulpit; I, seated before him on a little bench, was 
the congregation, and he always preached to me about being good. 
One day I heard him crying and saw the nurse running into the 
street, calling him to come back and be dressed. He refused, say- 
ing " I do not want to go to dancing-school, and I won't be dressed, 
for I don't think it is ^ood to learn to dance." And that was 
the only time I ever knew Billy White to be a naughty boy. 



In his more mature life, though he never danced him- 
self, he was not opposed to any one else doing so. In 
fact, lie was most tolerant and liberal in his views and if 
he had been less broad-minded he could never have >vielded 
the Immense influence he exercised till the day of his death. 

The Bishop was a hearty eater and fond of good things. 
It is said he was devoted to mince pies and used to but- 
ter them. He treated bread as if it were meant only to 
be an excuse for butter. His love for good food was one 
of the secrets of his long life — he lived to be eighty-nine — 
and he had but one intemperate habit, his propensity for 
green tea, which he liked and insisted on having brewed 
as black as lye. He was most hospitable and there was 
scarcely a meal at which he did not have a guest. He 
dined at two o'clock, at which meal he always had two 
glasses of wine. Beyond this limit he never went. 
Every night before going to bed he used to smoke a soli- 
tary cigar, drink one glass of sherry, and eat two roasted 
apples. One of his family has written that 

he delighted in the evenings to have his grandchildren rub his 
hair behind his ears, which he called " teasling," and to rub his 
silk stockings before a hot open fire. He never wore a wig, as 
the fashion was, but powdered his hair. 

All these homely details about an episcopal dignitary 
may seem trifling, but the little domestic sidehghts and 
peeps at his personal habits go a long distance in helping 
to round out a full and true picture of a devoted father, 
a faithful pastor, and a most dignified and courtly gen- 
tleman. Bishop White died in 1836. 



>TRANGE as it may now seem to 
us, time was when South Front 
Street was a favourite place of resi- 
dence for the wealthy and fashion- 
able. A little examination of the 
remnants of old houses in this now 
unsavoury quarter is sufficient to 
carry conviction on that score. Many of these palatial 
dwellings belonged to wealthy merchants and importers 
who elected to live near their counting-houses and wharves. 
John Stocker, whose house is well preserved and quite 
representative of the residences of the neighbourhood, 
was an affluent merchant of the eighteenth century. He 
was at one time an alderman of the city and among his 
other activities and interests he was concerned with the 
institution of the IMutual Assurance Company, whose his- 
tory is itself of unusual interest. 

It was the first insurance corporation to be created in 
free and independent America after the severance from 
England, and is the second-oldest fire-insurance company 
in Philadelphia, the first being the Philadelphia Contribu- 
tionship for the insurance of Houses from Loss by Fire, 
or, as it is generally called, the Contributionship, which 
was founded in 1752. The circumstances connected with 
the origin of the Mutual Assurance Company throw light 
on an amusing phase of Philadelphia life. 

Fires in Colonial Philadelphia were the cause of much 
excitement and the sight of a blazing chimney was enough 
to throw the whole community into an uproar. Blazing 

8 33 


chimneys were the subject of legislation by the Provincial 
Assembly of 1775, which enacted that 

Every person whose Chimney shall take Fire and blaze out 
at the top, not having been swept within one Calendar IVIbnth, 
shall forfeit and pay the sum of Twenty Shillings ; but if swept 
within that Time and taking Fire and blazing out at the Top, 
the Person ^vho swept the same, eitlier by himself, his Servants or 
Negroes, shall forfeit and pay Twenty Shillings. 

With the ever-present danger of blazing chimneys, a 
number of people conceived that there was a grave jeop- 
ardy in the overhanging branches of shade trees that 
might catch fire from a blazing chimney and spread it 
farther in winter, and in both summer and ^vin- 
ter must interfere Avith the application of water in fire 

The apprehensive directors of the Contributionship 
called a general meeting of the subscribers of that organi- 
sation in April, 1781, to consider the propriety of " En- 
suring or Re-insuring Houses having Trees planted be- 
fore them in the Street." The owners of shade trees be- 
ing in a minority at this meeting, it was resolved that 
" no Houses having a Tree or Trees planted before them 
shall be Insured or Re-insured," and " that if any Per- 
son in future having a House Insured shall plant a Tree 
or Trees before it in the Street, if not removed in three 
IMonths from the time of planting he shall forfeit the 
benefit of Insurance." Legislation w'as then invoked 
against the objectionable shade trees and passed by the 
General Assembly in 1782 only to be repealed a few 
months later upon the urgent solicitation of tree lovers. 



Despite the sense of the Contributionship meeting in 
1781, no definite action was taken till April, 1784, when 
it was finally determined to put the resolution into effect. 
Thereupon the owners of the debarred properties set about 
organising for insurance and advertised a " New Society 
for Insuring Houses from Loss by Fire." They stated 
that a great number of the citizens of Philadelphia found 
it " agreeable and convenient to them " to have trees 
planted in the street before their houses, a thing prohibited 
by the Contributionship on pain of forfeiting insurance, 
and that they, therefore, would organise a company to in- 
sure such tree-adorned houses at a slight additional pre- 
mium. Under the new conditions, trees might be planted 
before the houses or in the yards belonging to them. 

By a curious regulation, it was also provided that " All 
T^ees planted near Houses shall be Trimmed every Fall, 
in such manner as not to be higher than the Eaves of the 
Houses. And Trees planted after Insurance must be re- 
ported to the Office." The deed of settlement of the new 
company was dated October 21, 1784. The badge or 
house-mark adopted was a leaden tree on a shield-shaped 
board in allusion to the origin of the organisation, while 
that of the Contributionship was four interclasped hands. 
Many of these old house-marks are still to be seen on the 
fronts of buildings in the older portions of the city. 



T 254 South Second Street, on the 
west side of the way between Dock 
and Spruce, is a spacious old house 
that stands considerably farther back 
than the neighbouring buildings, 
leaving an ample yard in front. 
This yard is piled high with hard- 

woods and cabinet-makers' lumber of various descrip- 
tion and the lower part of the building does duty as an 
office for the lumber yard. The structure is in every re- 
spect substantial and striking, but in no way ostentatious. 
A broad flight of steps leads up to a wide doorway that 
opens into a still wider hall. The rooms of this house 
are proportionately lofty and spacious and its whole mien, 
despite its present sordid and dingy environment, pro- 
claims that it was once the home of some notable person. 
The notable person that lived there was none other 
than Nicholas Wain, the law7er Nicholas, for there were 
several other Nicholases in the same family, one of the 
wittiest and keenest as well as one of the most able men 
in the Philadelphia of his day. The witticisms of Judge 
Peters, the master of Belmont, were not more delight- 
fully trenchant than the speeches that were always burst- 
ing from the irrepressible Nicholas. In men of such tem- 
perament as Wain and Peters, men who saw the humour 
of every situation, the flow of hon mots could not be 
checked, and their sayings and doings contributed not a 
little to the store of anecdotal wit. 



Nicholas Wain was born in 1742. Although not in 
any way directly identified with the public or official life 
of the community he was a striking and well-known char- 
acter. After completing the curriculum at the William 
Penn Charter School he began to study the law and pur- 
sued his labours with such diligence that he was admitted 
to the bar before he attained his majority. He went to 
England in 1763 and renewed his studies at the Temple, 
but after spending a little more than a year on the other 
side of the Atlantic, he came back to Philadelphia and 
entered into active practice both here and in Bucks. His 
brilliant intellect and legal acumen soon won him distinc- 
tion as a barrister in Pennsylvania and his practice grew 
to be handsomely lucrative. 

After practising less than ten years, however, when 
he was in the heyday of his professional career, he sud- 
denly gave up his practice and became a deeply concerned 
member of the Society of. Friends, devoting himself al- 
most wholly to preaching and performing other ministra- 
tions in behalf of Quaker interests. A Philadelphia 
woman of the period writing to a member of her family 
in England and commenting on Nicholas Wain's sudden 
abandonment of his valuable practice says, " He has re- 
signed on principle as he says no good man can practice 
law." It is related of him that one day as he was on his 
way to Newtown, where the county courts of Bucks were 
then held, he stopped to see a friend who lived near the 
Pennypack and remarked to him while there that he " was 
engaged in an important case that was to come before the 
court relative to property." On his way back to the city 
he stopped again to see the same friend and appeared 



dec'j)ly dejected. On being asked the cause of his depres- 
sion he answered, '' I did the best I could for my client, 
gained the cause for him, and thereby defrauded an hon- 
est man out of his just due." 

This was in 1772, and following closely upon this epi- 
sode he appeared one day in meeting and testified to his 
change of heart. He had hitherto been a man of the 
world and, though nominally a Quaker, he had not been 
in the habit of attending Friends' Meeting. On this 
memorable occasion, he walked into the preacher's gallery, 
knelt, and poured out a fervent prayer and confession, 
renouncing the worldliness of his former life, and pro- 
fessing his will to live thereafter more consistently with 
the promptings of his conscience. This he did and prac- 
tised benevolence and good deeds instead of ingeniously 
contorting the intricacies of the law. 

But however much Nicholas Wain might renounce 
his worldly w^ays, however much he might give up his 
former gay clothing and the yellow chariot in wliich he 
used to drive abroad in style, however plainly he might 
dress and forswear even coat collars, nothing could quench 
his sense of humour or keep his tongue quiet when some- 
thing witty popped into his head. Once, when chidden 
by some of his oppressively dignified and duller friends 
for some of his rallies, he told them that if they only knew 
liow much of liis mirth he did suppress they would not 
think so ill of him. 

Shortly after his conversion, as he was w^alking along 
the street one day in the plainest of garb, he met a young 
dandy of the towin offensively fripped out in the ex- 
tremest of the extreme fashions of the period. He had 



on a well-fitted topcoat surmounted at the shoulders by 
a collection of little capes each a bit smaller than the one 
beneath. Walking up to the festive youth, Nicholas took 
hold of the lowest cape and said, " Friend, what is this? " 
The would-be Beau Brummel, wishing to be facetious, 
replied, " That is Cape Henlopen." Touching the cape 
next above, Nicholas enquired, "And what is this?" 
" That," said the young popinjay, " is Cape Hatteras." 
" Then," said Nicholas, touching the jack-a-dandy's head 
with his finger, " this must be the lighthouse! " 

On another occasion, as Nicholas was going along 
the street, he noticed a house where a pane of glass had 
been broken in the parlour window and a sheet of paper 
pasted over the aperture till new glass was set in. See- 
ing the mistress of the house at her knitting in the back 
part of the room, Nicholas jammed his walking-stick 
through the paper and, putting his mouth to the hole he 
had made, called in, " Sham pane and no glass ! " 

It was while living in the South Second Street house 
that Nicholas was much annoyed by repeated depreda- 
tions on his woodpile. He not only suspected his next- 
door neighbour of purloining the wood, but assured him- 
self of the circumstance before acting. He then bought 
a cartload of wood and sent it to the offending neighbour 
with his compliments. The man was naturally enraged 
as he had no notion that he was even suspected. He 
went to Nicholas in a temper and demanded to know what 
such a thing meant. " Friend," said Nicholas, " I was 
afraid thee would hurt thyself falling off my wood pile." 

He was clerk of the Philadelphia Yearly Meeting, 
but, notwithstanding his exalted position among Friends, 



he was always keeping them on tenterhooks of suspense 
by his sallies, and on one occasion he so shocked them by 
one of his uncontrollable bursts that a deputation of 
" weighty Friends " was sent to labour with him. 

Nicholas was nervous and fidgety and could not stand 
the extreme deliberation that some people affected in 
speaking. Once a visiting Friend was moved to speak 
in meeting and rising to his feet looked about him, cleared 

his throat loudly, and began, " I feel "' Then followed 

a long pause, more throat clearing, and, after another 
survey of the assembly, the speaker solemnly repeated, 

" I feel " Again pausing and casting his eye over 

his hearers, he reiterated for the third time, " I feel " 

This was too much for Nicholas's impatient spirit; he felt 
that something must be supplied to feel. In a tone 
louder than a stage whisper he burst out, "A louse!" 
The effect on the meeting can be better imagined than de- 
scribed. Nicholas knew that he was to be waited on 
because of this indiscretion and he likewise knew when 
he was to expect the visit of the elders. On the evening 
when the Friends went to his house, the windows were all 
dark and no answ^er was returned to their oft-repeated 
rappings. Finally concluding that Nicholas must be 
away, they were turning from the door when a window 
on the second floor went up and Nicholas's head, arrayed 
in a nightcap, came out. " Friends," said he, " you needn't 
come in. The Lord's been here before you!" A print 
representing this incident is still in existence. 

Nicholas Wain's wife was Sarah ^Morris Richardson, 
the daughter of Joseph Richardson, a man of large for- 
tune. It is said that she was an exceedingly small woman, 



and family tradition has it that her father weighed her 
in a pair of scales against a bag full of gold coin that was 
to be her wedding portion so that she was literally " worth 
her weight in gold." Nicholas died in 1813 universally 
love and respected. It is said that even on his deathbed 
he could not refrain from joking. Almost with his last 
hard-drawn breath he said, looking up, " I can't die for 
the life of me." 




HE front of 224 Pine Street arrests 
attention and compels the admira- 
tion of the passerb}^ if he has any 
eye for the beauties of our old 
Colonial architecture. Notwith- 
standing its mutilated and dingy 
condition — it now serves for a tene- 
ment house for immigrants and some of the front cham- 
bers are rented to socialist clubs; squalour unspeakable 
prevails — there is beauty enough left to demand more 
than a passing glance. 

Built of the red and black bricks so characteristic 
of Philadelphia, the wall is pierced with broad windows 
filled with small square panes set in very wide sash-bars. 
Pilasters and pediment adorn the door and the cornice 
and ornamentation beneath the eaves surpass in richness 
of design and nicety of finish anj-thing of the sort in the 
city. Until a few years ago, when the interior was de- 
spoiled of its wonderful woodwork, nothing could have 
been more exquisite than the carving and panelling there 
to })e found. From the ground to the top floor, hall and 
staircase were wainscotted with mahogany and there were 
mahogany doors. The doorways from the hall to the 
drawing-rooms were enriched with fluted pilasters and 
deeply mouhlcd and carved broken pediments. Immed- 
iately above the fireplaces were narrow panels on which 
hunting scenes were wrought in mastic. The wall above 



was panelled to the ceiling as was also the space on either 
side of the fireplace. 

It was, past all question, one of the most elegant of 
the many elegant houses in Philadelphia. Here there was 
no reason for Quaker restraint or love of plainness that 
checked elaboration in such a number of instances. It 
was built for people whose every inclination was toward 
luxury of style in living and adornment in the objects 
about them and, as they had abundant means to gratify 
their tastes, nothing was stinted that might add comfort 
or elegance. 

Here lived John Stamper, a wealthy English mer- 
chant who had been a councilman, alderman, and finally, 
mayor of the city in 1759, and had bought from Thomas 
and Richard Penn, in 1761, the whole south side of Pine 
Street from Second to Third and, at some time prior to 
the Revolution — probably about 1764 or 1765 — built him- 
self this house. It was surrounded by a fair garden filled 
with the choicest flowers, shrubbery, and fruit trees. At 
a later date, when Doctor Blackwell, into whose posses- 
sion the property passed, built the house at 238 for his 
daughter on the occasion of her marriage to George Wil- 
ling, the garden extended that far west and was enjoyed 
by both families in common. 

John Stamper's daughter Mary married William 
Bingham the elder. Hannah, one of the daughters of 
William and Mary Stamper Bingham, married first John 
Benezet and secondly the Reverend Doctor Robert Black- 
well. Doctor Blackwell was thus the brother-in-law of 
the Honourable William Bingham, who married the beau- 
tiful Ann Willing and later built and maintained a 



princely cstablislinient in Third Street when the " court 
hfe " of the early Hepiiblie found so brilliant a setting in 

Kobert Blackwell, the son of Colonel Jacob Blackwell, 
was born in 1748 on Long Island where the family had 
long been prominent and possessed large estates along 
the East Kiver. Blackwell's Island, opposite New York, 
was once a part of their property. Robert Blackwell 
graduated from Princeton in 1768. Before studying 
theology, he seems to have attained some proficiency in 
the science of medicine which he afterward made good 
use of. He apparently read divinity in New York either 
^^dth Dr. Auchmutv, the rector of Trinity, or with Mr. 
Seabury, afterward Bishop Seabury. During that period 
he spent several years as tutor in the family of Colonel 
Frederick Philipse, the lord of Philipse Manor. 

AVhen his preparation for orders was completed, Doc- 
tor Auchmuty, in A\Titing a letter of commendation to 
Doctor Peters, the then rector of Christ Church and St. 
Peter's, says of Black wxll, " though . . . not very 
showy, yet he will make a solid . . . minister. . . . 
He is a lump of good nature and very diligent M^hen he 
has anything to do." In another letter he says, " He is 
a good lad, and will be useful," a prediction that Dr. 
Blackwell fully justified — far better, after all, than being 
" showy." After ordination he served the missions at 
Gloucester and St. Mary's, Colestown, in New Jersey, un- 
til the war completely scattered both congregations. 

On leaving his two missions he went to Valley Forge 
and served in the double capacity of chaplain and sur- 
geon. His connection with the Continental Army con- 



tinued till the date of his first marriage in 1780. Not long 
after this, on the death of his father, he came into a large 
and valuable estate. In 1781 he was called to assist Doc- 
tor White in the joint cure of Christ Church and St. 

His first wife having died, he married Hannah 
Bingham in November, 1783, whose ample fortune, joined 
to his own, made him not only the richest clergyman in the 
country but one of the richest men in Philadelphia. Gris- 
wold in his " Republican Court " speaks of him as con- 
spicuous in the society of Washington's time, and after re- 
ferring to him as " a man of large fortune, fine appearance 
and singularly pleasant temper and manner," he adds: 

Being withal a man of unquestioned piety and great pro- 
priety of life, lie maintained a dignified position, and was ex- 
tensively deferred to by an opulent and worldly class, who would 
probably have deferred to no one else less blessed with adventitious 

In the division of duties, the ministrations at St. Peter's 
fell largely to his share. In a way, he may be said to 
have been a " court preacher," for Washington was a 
member of the united parishes and frequently attended ser- 
vice at both churches as did also many of the Cabinet and 
members of Congress, for although, after the Revolution, 
there was considerable animus in some quarters against 
the Church because of its former connection with the State, 
there was still a good deal of the feeling that one might 
be a " Christian in any church but couldn't be a gentleman 
outside of the Church of England." 

Not two squares away from Doctor Blackwell's house 



was his brotlier-iu-law AVilliam Bingham's spacious 
mansion where JNIrs. Bingham reigned over a brilliant cote- 
rie in the day -when she and JNIrs. Robert JNIorris ruled 
Phila(lcli)hia society. During the time that jNIr. and Mrs. 
Bingham spent abroad after the restoration of peace, they 
were busied with plans for the house they purposed erect- 
ing on their return home. In describing it in his " Re- 
publican Court," Griswold says: 

The domestic architecture of London and Paris was a sub- 
ject of special study, and the mansion of the Duke of Manchester, 
in ISIanchester Square, London, was selected as the model of the 
contemplated structure in Philadelphia — the dimensions of the 
original being somewhat enlarged in the copy. Soon after they 
came back to America they built their palatial edifice, so well 
remembered ... as the Mansion House, in Third Street above 
Spruce, which was unhappily destroyed ... by fire. Its 
width was spacious, its height not extended above a third storey, 
and it stood perhaps forty feet from the ordinary line of the 
street, being approached by a circular carriage way of gravel, 
the access upon both ends of which opened by s\^^nging gates of 
iron open tracery. A low wall, with an elegant course of balus- 
ter upon it, defended the immediate front, and connected the gates 
which gave admission. The grounds about the house, beautifully 
diversified with walks, statuary, shade and partei-res, covered not 
less than three acres ... its entrance was not raised at all, 
as is the modem style, to a kind of second storey, but it brought 
the visitor by a single step upon the wide pave of tessellated mar- 
ble. . . . Its self-supporting broad stairway of fine white 
marble — the first of that description, probably, ever known in 
America — leading to the second storey, gave a truly Roman ele- 
gance to the passage. On the left hand, as the visitor entered, 
were parlours ; on the right, a room designed for a study ; and 


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opposite, separated by a lateral hall, a library. In the second 
storey on the south, were a drawing room and card rooms, the 
windows of which, looking down on an extensive conservatory, ad- 
jacent to the lower parlours of the same side, revealed a delicious 
prospect. . . . Much of the furniture, including the carpets, 
which were remarkable for their elegant richness, had been made 
in France. The site of all this magnificence was long ago cov- 
ered by closely built city houses. 

Let it not be supposed that Doctor Blaekwell, either 
on account of wealth or the many social demands made 
upon him, was lukewarm in the discharge of his duties. 
He was a faithful and devoted parish priest and tireless 
in performing all the works of his office. He refused to 
leave the city during the yellow- fever epidemic of 1793, 
and was unremitting in his attentions to the sick and dy- 
ing till he was himself stricken down with the pestilence 
and narrowly escaped with his life. He never fully re- 
covered from the effects of this sickness and, in 1811, ow- 
ing to failing health, he resigned from the charge of St. 
Peter's, thenceforth devoting himself to gardening and 
study till his death in 1831. The Pine Street house then 
passed to the Willings. In recent years it has changed 
hands a number of times. 



ERHAPS there is no family that 
has maintained so active a concern 
for the testimonies of the Society 
of Friends as have the members of 
the Evans family through many gen- 
erations. They were established in 
^5:^ this country by Thomas and Ann 

Evans who came from Merionethshire, Wales, to 
G^^'ynedd, Pennsylvania, in 1698. Thomas was the son of 
Evan Ap Evan and one of the band that established the 
Welsh settlement on the east side of the Schuylkill and 
called it North Wales. The Evans family of Gwvnedd are 
to-day the only descendants of the settlers who own a por- 
tion of the original tract granted to them by William Penn. 
Thomas's son Evan was born in ^lerionethshire, Wales, 
and came to America with his parents. His wife was Eliz- 
abeth Musgrove. Jonathan Evans, his son, removed from 
Gwynedd to Philadelphia and married Hannah, daughter 
of Michael Walton. To them, on January 25, 1759, was 
born a son, Jonathan, who learned the trade of carpentry 
and built the house at 322 Union Street, now De Lancey, 
which is so well preserved to-day. The *' Testimony of the 
Monthly ]\Teeting of Friends of Philadelphia for the 
Southern District " says that Jonathan Evans had a lib- 
eral education in Friends' schools and was somewhat given 
to dissipating with " gay and volatile companions, giving 
himself up to mirth and conviviality." He was led into 
a religious life and convictions by reading William Penn's 
" Xo Cross No Crown " and separated himself much from 



the world. He refused to fight in the Revolution and 
was imprisoned for sixteen weeks therefor. He was very 
firm in his support of the discipline of the Society, was an 
overseer at twenty-four and an elder at thirty-six. In 
1786, he married Hannah, daughter of David and Mary 
Bacon, who lived on Market Street near Second. Their 
living was very plain as was the furniture of the house, 
and Jonathan was careful, in his business of building 
houses, not to infringe upon this principle. 

Jonathan Evans is particularly known among Friends 
for the prominent part he took in the troubles of the So- 
ciety from 1823 to 1827, which led to a division in the 
latter year. He never flinched from the scorn and suffer- 
ing which were heaped upon him at that time and was one 
of the principal witnesses for the so-called " Orthodox " 
party in the lawsuits which arose over the disposal of 
property belonging to the Society. He was very zealous 
in his denunciation of Elias Hicks, a minister of Jericho 
Monthly Meeting, New York, and attacked him for un- 
soundness upon several occasions, propounding a definite 
Evangelical creed for the Society. 

He retired from business with a competency many 
years before his death and gave himself up to the con- 
cerns of Friends. His wife died in 1829 and after an 
illness of two years he passed away February 8, 1839. 
His whole life seems to have been passed in troublous 
times, first for the country and afterward for his beloved 
Society of Friends, so that we can imagine the house on 
Union Street as the scene of many solemn gatherings of 
notable people. 

The next occupant was a son, William, who appears 

4 49 


to Iiave been a youth of boiiie spirit, since the story is told 
of him, when quite young, that he escaped one night in 
his night-clotlies, went down to Third Street, and thence 
to his uncle's near Second and Market. The memorial 
of him states that he was exposed to many temptations 
during his youth, but seems to have withstood them, for 
lie aj^peared in the ministry in 1817, and was always care- 
ful to decline business transactions not in accordance with 
the principles of Friends. 

In 1811 he married Deborah, daughter of Aaron and 
Abigail Musgrove, who died in 1815. His second mar- 
riage was in 1824, with Elizabeth, daughter of John and 
Rebecca Barton, a minister among Friends. She died 
in 1861, and after long suffering and confinement, w^hich 
he bore with a fine fortitude, William Evans died JNIay 
12, 1867. He was ill with yellow fever in 1820, travelled 
widely in the ministry, and was much interested in the 
education of Friends' children. An occurrence in his youth 
illustrates the liberality of the early Friends. Walking 
one day along Second Street near Spruce, he passed the 
house of Nicholas Wain, now number 254, and was called 
in by this eminent Friend who was seated on the front 
steps. Going into the house, he brought forth a bundle 
of church-warden pipes w hich he handed to young William 
Evans with the remark, " Take them home to thy father, 
he will need them at Yearly JNIeeting time." 

In connection with his brother Thomas, beginning in 
1837, he edited a series of fourteen volumes of 
" Friends' Library," made up of " Journals, doctrinal 
treatises, and other writings of Friends." In 1854 they 
edited a new edition of " Piety Promoted.'* He was the 



clerk of the Yearly Meeting, which meets at Fourth and 
Arch Streets, for many years, and his journal was pub- 
lished in 1870. 

The last to live in the house was William Evans, a son, 
who had also lived in the Pine Street house directly back 
of 322 De Lancey, as the Evans ground extended through 
to Pine Street. William Evans is an elder of the Society 
of Friends and is actively engaged in its welfare as his 
ancestors have been before him. An incident is told of 
an Evans who occupied a responsible position among 
Friends, and during the faithful performance of his duties 
in the meeting had occasion to seek an opportunity with a 
Friend whose preaching was not acceptable. His labour 
seemed to be unavailing and finally it became necessary 
to exclude the offending Friend from the meetings. 
Whereupon he obtained access to the cellar and one First 
Day morning during the silence of the meeting his voice 

was heard crying up through the radiator, " Evans is a 

speckled bird." 

The Evans family were distinguished members of the 
Pine Street Meeting, near Front Street, where Dorothy 
Payne married James Todd. She afterward became the 
famous Dolly Madison, wife of President James Madison. 




ARRING dingy and discoloured 
paint, Samuel Powel's house at 244) 
South Third Street shows the same 
front as when its distinguislied owner 
lavishly entertained the notables of 
the country and eminent foreigners 
under its hospitable roof. A low 
flight of broad stone steps ascends to a wide pilastered 
doorway beyond which a spacious hall and staircase 
are open to view. Quaint turns and closets are at 
every hand. No expense that might contribute to 
elegance or comfort was spared when the house was 
built about 1769, and the doors of the rooms are of 
solid mahogany, while a rich mahogany wainscotting runs 
all the way up the staircase. The front is of unusual 
breadth and, as might be expected, the rooms are of di- 
mensions far bej^ond the ordinary. The largest apart- 
ment in the house is the second-storey front chamber which 
was the ball-room in days gone by. In this state apart- 
ment, the overmantel was an exquisite piece of the wood- 
carver's art and represented a hunting scene above which 
were wrought armorial bearings in high relief. Deli- 
cately finished carving was also to be found in other parts 
of the house. 

Round about were extensive grounds beautifully laid 
out, and in the garden was a profusion of lemon, orange, 
and citron trees along with other exotics, while the walks 
and alleys were adorned with costly statuary. When the 


Built o. \lC>i. 


Powels lived there, in the whole square from Willing's 
Alley to Spruce Street, there were only three houses be- 
side their own — that of JVIr. Powel's brother-in-law, 
Thomas Willing, at the corner of Willing's Alley, the 
palatial dwelling of William Bingham, and the house 
of his wife's brother-in-law, Colonel William Byrd, of 
Westover in Virginia, that dour old gentleman whose 
sneering ghost still haunts the rooms of the stately south- 
ern manor house where he died by his own hand. The sur- 
rounding neighbourhood was considered the most fash- 
ionable in the city, and was regarded as the court end of 
town. Now, there is only a large backyard in place of the 
old garden, and much of the fine woodcarving within has 
been torn away, although the mahogany doors and wains- 
cot remain to attest former magnificence- 
Samuel Powel, born in 1738, was the grandson of the 
emigrant, Samuel Powell, who came to Philadelphia in 
1685. He inherited a large fortune and after receiving 
the best education the city could afford, graduating from 
the College a Bachelor of Arts, he made an extended tour 
of Europe, where he and his friend, Doctor JNIorgan, met 
the Duke of York in Rome and were " often at conversa- 
tions and assemblies with him." The Pope gave them an 
audience and they were introduced at the Court of the 
King of Sardinia. In England, where he was widely 
entertained, he spent much time, and also " had the honour 
of being presented to His JNIajesty." 

Though a birthright member of the Society of Friends, 
he was baptised by the Reverend Richard Peters before 
his return from England and on reaching home became 
an active and prominent member of St. Peter's parisli. 



lie was a man of public spirit, took keen interest in the 
political life of the city and country, and held responsible 
offices, being elected a common councilman in 1770, alder- 
man in 1774, and mayor in 1775. He was the last to 
hold that office under the old charter and the first to 
hold it under the new charter in 1789. From the fact 
that he was the last mayor under the royal government 
and the first under the republican, he is often referred to 
as the " Patriot Mayor." 

Besides his interest in civil matters he was a man 
of literary and scientific attainments and a member of 
the American Philosophical Society. Of sound judge- 
ment and business ability, he was frequently consulted 
in matters of state and was intimately associated with 
General Washington, who was often a guest in his house. 

During the British occupation of Philadelphia, the 
Earl of Carlisle, one of the English commissioners, had 
his quarters in INIr. Powel's house and in ^vriting thence, 
on the eve of his departure, to a friend speaks in the most 
laudatory terms of the host upon whom he had been quar- 
tered. After some apologetic remarks about 

coming into a gentleman's house without asking his leave, taking 
possession of all the best apartments and placing a couple of 
sentries at his door, using his plate, etc., 

he savs of ^Nlr. and Mrs. Powel, 

I make him and his wife a visit every day, talking politics with 

I I Kill, and we are the best friends in the world. They are very 
agreeable, sensible people, and you would never be out of their 


' ' > 



Both before and after the Revolution, the Powel 
House was famous for its hospitahty and both Mr. and 
Mrs. Powel were chiefly remembered for the lustre they 
shed on the city's social life. The many distinguished 
men who for official or other reasons visited Philadelphia 
from time to time, or were in residence here during the 
period when Philadelphia was the national Capital, were 
repeatedly their guests. While Washington was in at- 
tendance at the Constitutional Convention in 1787 and 
during his presidency, such entries in his diaries as the 
following are met with again and again: 

Saturday, 9. — Dined at the Club at the City Tavern, drank 
tea and sat till 10 o'clock at Mr. Powel's, 

Friday, 15. — Dined at Mr. Powel's and drank tea there. 

The Father of his Country was not the only person 
to make a note of the Powel dinners. John Adams, who 
could always be trusted to chronicle duly anything that 
tickled his palate, licks his chops, so to speak, in his diary 
over Mayor Powel's dinners, and sets down a list of good 
things to eat almost as long as a detailed menu. Here 
is one of his diary entries: 

September 8, Thursday. — Dined at Mr. Powel's with and 

many others ; a most sinful feast again ! everything wliich could 
delight the eye or allure the taste; curds and creams, jellies, 
sweetmeats of various sorts, twenty sorts of tarts, fools, trifles, 
floating islands, whipped sillibub &c., &c. Parmesan cheese, 
punch, wine, porter, beer, etc. 

From this it may be seen that the Powel household 
fully sustained Philadelphia's reputation for good living. 



^Irs. Powel, some years after her husband's death, sold 
the house in 1708 to her nephew, William Bingham, who 
deeded it next year to his daughter, Ann Bingham Baring. 
The Barings lived there but a short time and then the 
property passed to various owners, William Rawle among 




HE large house at 321 South 
Fourth Street, occupying with its 
high-walled garden all the space on 
the east side of the way between 
De Lancey Place and Union 
Street, always attracts attention by 
the beauty of the great fan-light 
over its door. It stands on what is known as the Old 
Almshouse Lot which included all the ground between 
Spruce and Pine Streets and Third and Fourth. 
In 1772 this tract was sold and Henry Hill, of Madeira 
wine fame, eventually became owner of that part now 
occupied by the house under consideration. Here he built, 
in 1786, and lived for some time. 

About 1800 he rented the property to the McCalls, 
and it was here that General George JMcCall was born. 
In 1817 Doctor Philip Syng Ph)^sick bought the prem- 
ises and from him the house has descended, through the 
Randolphs, to its present owner, Mrs. Charles Keith. 

Doctor Physick has fitly been called the " father of 
American surgery." No man did more than he for the 
advancement of the science in the late eighteenth and 
early nineteenth centuries. Born in 1768, he studied 
both here and in Scotland, returning in time to perform 
invaluable services during the yellow-fever epidemic of 
1793 when, as resident-physician in charge of the plague 
hospital, established by the city authorities at Bush Hill, 



tlie old Hamilton place, he distinguished himself by signal 
bravery and devotion. 

Doctor I'hysick M'as pre-eminently a thinker and 
worker but not an author, and seems to have had an in- 
vincible repugnance to appearing in print. He stood for 
all that was highest and best in the profession he graced, 
both as lecturer at the University of Pennsylvania and 
I)ractitioner, and was thoroughly tyjiical of the old Phila- 
delphia physician — a classical scholar, a man of broad 
general culture, as well as a master of medical science and, 
before all else, a gentleman in the truest sense, courteous, 
kindly, considerate, and self-sacrificing. 




UMBER 336 Spruce Street stands 
on what was originally the " Old 
Alms House Square " deeded July 
6, 1767, by the Mayor and Com- 
monalty of Philadelphia to the Con- 
tributors for the Relief and Em- 
ployment of the Poor, and bounded 
by Third, Pine, Fourth and Spruce Streets, three hun- 
dred and ninety-six feet broad and four hundred and 
sixty-eight feet long. April 23, 1772, these deeded 
it to Edward Shippen. It was broken up and 
came through various hands to Samuel Pancoast, 
January 1, 1796. Samuel Pancoast, " House Carpenter," 
was of Mansfield Township, Burlington County, New 
Jersey, and it was he who built the brick house then 
numbered 130. On Januarj^ 14, 1796, he conveyed it 
to Mordecai Lewis. Mordecai Lewis was descended from 
William Lewis of Glamorganshire, South Wales, who 
came to Chester County, Pennsjdvania, in 1686, where 
he resided until 1707. His son Evan was a prominent 
Friend and served in the Provincial Assembly from Ches- 
ter from 1706 to 1719. Evan's younger son, Jonathan, 
removed to Philadelphia in 17-17 and married Rachel, 
dauijhter of John Breintnall. INIordecai Lewis was the 
only son of this union and was a proficient student of 
the classics and a prominent merchant of the city. He 
was first a member of the firm of Neave, Harman & 
Lewis, shipowners and importers, then with Harman & 



Lewis, and linally with ^lordecai Lewis & Company, com- 
posed of ^^'illiam l^ingham and himself, until William 
]?inn^h;nii witlidrcw in 179-1. Thej^ owned seven shijDS in 
the Last India trade and did a large business. ^Mordecai 
Lewis's name apjieared on much of the Continental cur- 
rency issued by Congress in 1776. He was a member 
of the volunteer military company but never saw active 
service. His integrity and ability caused him to be chosen 
a director of the Bank of North America, the Philadel- 
})hia Contributionship for the Insurance of Houses from 
Loss by Fire, the Philadelphia Librarj^ and the treasurer 
of the Pennsylvania Hospital. 

The Philadelphia Contributionship is an ancient insti- 
tution formed in April, 1752, by John Smith, Benjamin 
Franklin, Philip Syng, Samuel Rhoads, Hugh Roberts, 
Israel Pemberton, Jr., John Mifflin, and Joseph Morris. 
The announcement was 

Notice is licrcby given, That the INSURANCE OFFICE 
for Sliipplng and Houses is kept by Joseph Saunders at his House 
wlierc Israel Pemberton Sen. lately lived near the Queen's Head 
In Water Street. 

The scheme was an application of the Amicable Con- 
tributionship or Hand-in-Hand Fire Office of London 
and thus the four hands grasping each other's wrists 
were put on the seal and house-mark. 

On his return from Europe in 1772, Mordecai Lewis 
married Hannah, daughter of Joseph Saunders, the 
keei)er of the insurance office. He died INIarch 13, 1709, 
beloved for his integrity, uno])trusive benevolence, and 
j)tiblic service. The house was sold by his executors May 


) J 5\ > 3 J 

, •> 1 •> 5 

>*> SIJJ* 

JSiiIlt by Siiiuufl I'aiicoast prior to 17!)G 


5, 1809, to his son, Samuel N. Lewis, who became a suc- 
cessful merchant as his father had been and was noted 
for his enlarged views and public spirit. 

Samuel N. Lewis seems to have lived in the house un- 
til November 4, 1817, when it was conveyed to Samuel 
Rowland Fisher, a distinguished man and prominent 
Friend. Samuel Fisher was a merchant noted for his 
hospitality, charity, and sympathy for negroes and In- 
dians. He was a member of his father's firm of Joshua 
Fisher & Son for whom he made several visits to England 
and became well known among Friends there. During 
the Revolution he had much trouble owing to his neu- 
trality and consistent Friendly life. He was exiled to 
Virginia from 1777 until 1779 and was arrested for a 
letter to a business partner in New York which was con- 
sidered inimical to the government. He was committed 
to gaol by Chief Justice JMcKean and refused bail because 
he was unwilling to acknowledge in any way the legality 
of his arrest. 

He was held in close confinement in the " Old Gaol," 
tried, and twice declared not guilty, but the jury being 
sent out again, amid the clamour of the mob outside, re- 
turned a verdict of misprision and treason, so that he was 
sentenced to imprisonment during the war. A pardon 
was soon offered him but he refused it and suffered im- 
prisonment for two years, finally being invited to leave 
without terms, so that he walked out of open doors with 
his health broken. 

The old house was his wedding gift to his daughter, 
Deborah, who married William Wharton in 1817. 

William Wharton was the son of Charles Wharton 



and Ilaniiali Redwood, wlio renounced the vanities and 
tciu])tations of a worldly career and dedicated the powers 
of a cultivated intellect and of a most cordial and attrac- 
tive character to the requirements of a religious life 
among Friends. He Avas a gentleman of genial wit and 
gracious dignity which matched wtU wdth his wife's charm 
and singular beauty. Their country house, Bellevue, 
near the Schu3^1kill River below Manayunk, was long the 
mecca for their friends and descendants. 

Deborah Wharton became one of the most widely 
known ministers of the Society of Friends and visited 
many different parts of the country on behalf of Indian 
welfare. She was one of the earliest and most efficient 
managers of Swarthmore College, as a descendant in each 
generation has since been. Possessed of ample means, 
she gave liberally to philanthropic endeavours and was 
known to say that she could never afford to wear a silk 
dress. Her children were trained in domestic arts and 
also to work with their hands, and her genuine kindness, 
goodness, and strong intelligence were factors in their 
notable careers. Ten children were born on Spruce 
Street: Hannah, who married Robert Haydock; Rod- 
man, who married Susanna D. Parrish; Sarah, who mar- 
ried Abraliam I5arker; Charles W., who married Mary 
Lovering; Joseph, w^io married Anna Corbit Lovering; 
Mary, who married Joseph D. Thurston; William, who 
married Anna Walter; Esther Fisher, who married Ben- 
jamin R. Smith; and Samuel and Anna, who died 

Of these Joseph Wharton became, perhaps, the most 
distinguished for learning, philanthropy, and commercial 



success. He was one of the most prominent and success- 
ful ironmasters of the United States, owner of the Beth- 
lehem Steel Works and of similar undertakings elsewhere. 
He was the founder of the Wharton School of Finance 
and Economy at the University of Pennsylvania, a lib- 
eral benefactor, and for many years the president of the 
board of managers of Swarthmore College and a promi- 
nent member of the Society of Friends. 

Upon his mother's death in 1888, the house on Spruce 
Street came to him and is still owned by his estate. It 
is in good condition and beside the beautiful doorway 
is the ancient foot-scraper and the sloping outside cellar 
door. Back in the side yard is a trellis for vines reach- 
ing to the top of the house and upon this young Charles 
Wharton was wont to display his agility to the dismay 
of his anxious nurse. On each anniversary of Deborah 
Wharton's birth after the seventy-ninth, she received her 
family and friends and at one time there were four genera- 
tions represented. 

The house is the one well-preserved abode upon So- 
ciety Hill where the quality of the city lived and prom- 
enaded in Colonial days. 




HE black and red brick house at the 
southwest corner of Fourth and 
Locust Streets was built about 1750 
and in both the Colonial period and 
the early part of the nineteenth 
century was the scene of much hos- 
pitality and entertaining. Here, 
for a time, lived Doctor William Shippen, the most 
talented member of his family, perhaps, who married Alice 
Lee, the daughter of Thomas Lee, of Virginia, and sister 
of Richard Henry and Arthur Lee. This was only one 
of the many marriages that wove a web of relationship be- 
tween the Colonial families of Philadelphia and the 
county families of Virginia and Maryland, a connexion 
that is too frequently ignored. 

Doctor Shippen's alliance with the Lees made his house 
the natural centre and resort of most of the Virginia 
aristocracy, who came to Philadelphia in great numbers 
when the city was the seat of the national government. 
During the winters of those years there was an endless 
succession of balls, dinners, routs, and all manner of gai- 
eties and dissipation. 

Mrs. Bingham and IMrs. Robert Morris gave the most 
elaborate and sumptuous dinners. Mrs. Adams writes : 

I should spend a very dissipated winter if I were to accept 
onc-lialf tlic invitations I receive, particularly to the routs or 


1 J > 

5 ■> J 

3 J ) J 

5 3 3 3 3 



One man writing to a friend abroad says : 

You have never seen anything like the frenzy wliich has seized 
upon the inhabitants here; they have been half mad ever since 
this city became the seat of government; there is no limit to 
their prodigality and . . . might say, profligacy. The proba- 
bility is that some families will find they cannot support their 
dinners, suppers, and losses at loo a great while. 

Speaking of the frequent tea-drinkings, an amusing 
incident, illustrative of the customs of the time, occurred 
at the house of Mrs. Robert Morris upon the occasion 
of the Chevalier de la Luzerne taking the Prince de 
Broglie into that hospitable household. The Prince 
writes : 

Monsieur de la Luzerne conducted me to the house of Mrs. 
Morris to tea. I partook of most excellent tea, and I should be 
even now drinking it, I believe, if the Ambassador had not 
charitably notified me at the twelfth cup that I must put my 
spoon across it when I wished to finish with this sort of warm 
water. He said to me : " It is almost as ill-bred to refuse a 
cup of tea when it is offered to you as it would be for the mistress 
of the house to propose a fresh one when the ceremony of the 
spoon has notified her that we no longer wish to partake of it. 


In 1799, Doctor Caspar Wistar moved into the house 
and continued to live there until his death in 1818. From 
the time Doctor Wistar took up his residence there it 
became a centre from which hospitality radiated. Thither 
flocked the most eminent citizens, men of note in every 
professional and scientific walk of life, and thither also 
gladly came the most distinguished visitors to the city, 
attracted one and all by the magnetism of Doctor 

5 65 


Wistar's remarkable traits of character and his genius 
for intellectual leadership. As a result of this affection- 
ate homage by his friends, on the one side, and the genial 
doctor's courteous and unfailing hospitality on the other, 
grew u]) one of Philadeli)hia's most cherished institutions, 
the Wistar Parties. 

Tliey originated, it seems, in the follo\\'ing manner. 
As Doctor Wistar was extremely busy with the profes- 
sional duties incident to an extensive practice and as, in 
addition to this, the chair he held at the University of 
Pennsylvania made heavy demands upon his time, his 
leisure moments were necessarily limited. It was gener- 
ally understood, however, that he was at home on Sunday 
evenings and his friends fell into the habit of dropping 
in when they were reasonably sure of finding him. As 
the years passed, these w^eekly gatherings became a regu- 
lar institution, the same group of friends meeting week 
after week at Doctor Wistar's house at the southwest 
corner of Fourth and Locust Streets, or Prune Street 
as the latter w'as then called. 

Doctor Wistar's close association with the Philosophi- 
cal Society made his house the rallying-point of all the 
choicest spirits in the learned world and, in time, there 
came to be an approximate identity between the personnel 
of the smaller organisation for weekly social intercourse 
and that of the larger and world-famous scientific body, 
the Philosophical Societ}^ of which Philadelphia has just 
cause to be proud. 

In 1811, the night of meeting w^as changed from Sun- 
day evening to Saturday, and the refreshments, which had 
hitherto been of the simplest, being merel}^ wine and cake. 



became more elaborate by the addition of ice creams, 
raisins, and almonds. The terrapin and oyster decadence 
had not yet set in. The number of guests usually ranged 
between ten and fifty and the regular habitues had the 
privilege of bringing whom they would. Invitations be- 
gan to be sent out in October or November and continued 
till March or April. 

After Doctor Wistar's death in 1818, a few of his 
more intimate friends, who had been in the habit of at- 
tending at first the Sunday and then the Saturday gath- 
erings for many years previously, determined to continue 
their accustomed meetings and retain the name of *' Wistar 
Parties " out of a warm regard for the memory of the 
originator. It was at this time that membership in the 
Philosophical Society became a requisite for eligibility 
for the Wistar Parties. The meetings under the new 
regime were held during the winter every year till the 
outbreak of the Civil War put an end, for the time being, 
to all the former wholesome conviviality. 

It was not until 1886 that the Wistar Parties were 
resumed. Ancient traditions, hoAvever, have been loyally 
adhered to save in the matter of the viands now set before 
the Wistarians, in which respect, early simplicity has 
yielded to a desire for more bountiful provision of tempt- 
ing cates. It is safe to say that all or nearly all the most 
distinguished visitors to the city, whether from our own 
country or beyond the sea, have been invited to attend 
the Wistar Parties and they have all been enthusiastic 
in their praise of the hospitality shown them. Not a 
few of them, including Thackeray, have recorded in print 
their impressions of these symposia of wit and wisdom. 



Among the noted guests who made either regular or 
occasional visits to Doctor Wistar's house, as the circum- 
stances of their being or not being residents of the city 
l)ermitted, may be mentioned the great naturalist, Baron 
von Humboldt, and the botanist Bonpland, who visited 
Philadelphia in 1804, Captain Riley of Arab fame, the 
witty Abbe Correa de Serra, John Vaughan, Samuel 
Breck, Doctor Benjamin Paish, Chief Justice Tilghman, 
John Ileckewelder, the ^Moravian missionary, Peter Du 
Ponceau, and a host of other celebrities whose names are 
a sufficient guarantee of the brilliance of these gatherings. 




f LMOST the only one of the really 
notable old houses in the city that 
has not in some way been aban- 
doned to business purposes or at 
last made into a lodging house for 
immigrants is the Morris House at 
225 South Eighth Street. Built in 
Flemish bond of alternating red stretcher and black 
header bricks, the doorway set between delicately fluted 
and quilled pilasters is surmounted by a pediment of 
excellent proportions and chaste design, while on one of 
the narrow double doors a brass nameplate bears the 
name of Morris, the letters of which have been almost 
obliterated by brass polish and the elbow-grease bestowed 
by generations of housemaids. On each side of the door 
are two windows, while on the second and third floors are 
ranges of five windows, all with small panes and broad 
sash-bars. To the front wall is affixed the old Contribu- 
tionship insurance badge. 

The lock inside the door is massive enough for a gaol 
and the key looks as though it might belong to the Tower 
of London. Straight through the house runs a hallway 
to a door opposite the entrance, opening into a garden 
full of box-bushes and rose trees and old-fashioned 
flowers. It is a veritable oasis in the surrounding desert 
of city bricks and mortar. To the right of the door, on 
entering, is the parlour; to the left, the library, and back 



of that the dining-room, while to the rear of the dining- 
room, in an ell extension, are the kitchens. 

The house was built in 1786 by John Reynolds, was 
sold in course of time by the sheriff to Ann Dunkin, and 
finally was purchased from her in 1817 by Luke Wistar 
]Morris, the son of Captain Samuel Morris, since which 
time it has passed by inheritance from one occupant to 
another until it has come to the present owner, JNIrs. Israel 
Wistar JNIorris. The JNIorris family in all its branches 
seems always to have possessed the fortunate habit of 
never throwing anything away and, at the same time, the 
equally happy attribute of keeping everything in order. 
Consequently one might say that the house is a veritable 
museum of Wistar and Morris heirlooms. Every bit of 
old furniture and china has been carefully preserved and 
its history kept fresh at the same time. Among other 
cherished objects dutifully treasured there is the cele- 
brated Tally-PIo punch-bowl, presented to Captain 
Samuel IVIorris by the Gloucester Fox Hunting Club. 

The house in which Captain Samuel INIorris lived at 
05 South Second Street is still standing, but has been 
so altered for mercantile purposes that it seems better to 
speak of him in connexion with his son's house, which has 
remained, in every respect, characteristic of the life of 
Colonial and post-Colonial days, and where so many 
things connected with his personal use are preserved. 

Captain Samuel INIorris was a man of singularly ami- 
able personality and one of the best-known and best- 
beloved citizens of his generation. This was equally true 
of him in his public capacity and in his social relations. 
An excellent horseman, a keen sportsman delighting in 


,1 5 1 

J > 1 ) J 

J , 5 1 ' " 

) > , ) ,> 

J ,- 5\ J > >> 

Jiuilt by John Keynolds, 1786 



all outdoor recreations, his inclinations led him to assist 
in forming the Gloucester Fox Hunting Club, of which 
he was president until his death in 1812. He was also, 
for a term of forty-odd years, Governour of the " Colony 
in SchuylkiU." 

His association with the first-named organisation is 
of very general interest because it brings out clearly the 
fox-hunting side of old Philadelphia life and at the same 
time calls attention to a striking bit of City Troop history. 
Philadelphia has always clung tenaciously to the manners 
and customs of the mother country — among them fox 
hunting, dear alike to hearts of the English country gen- 
try and to the hearts of their descendants on this side of 
the Atlantic and, outside of Virginia and ^laryland, it 
has always centred around Philadelphia. 

On the 29th of October, in the year 1766, a number 
of gentlemen of Philadelphia and of Gloucester County 
in West Jersey met together at the Philadelphia Coffee 
House at the corner of Front and Market Streets for 
the purpose of organising a fox-hunting club. They each 
agreed to subscribe five pounds, current money, for the 
maintenance of a kennel and pack and for defraying other 
incidental expenses. It was decided that as soon as a 
sufficient number of gentlemen had subscribed, another 
meeting should be held, when rules and regulations shoidd 
be adopted as might be agreeable. Accordingly, on De- 
cember 15, a second meeting was held and rules adopted, 
among them one rather quaint regulation providing: 

That at the death of every fox, one of the company shall 
carry about a cap to collect what the company may please to 
give the huntsman. 



The name fixed upon for the organisation was the 
GlouccsttT Fox Hunting Club, and the clubhouse and 
kennels were to be at Gloucester, in West Jersey, as this 
was an eminently convenient point of meeting, both for 
the members from Philadelphia and for the members 
from Jersey, of whom there were not a few. On the roll 
of the Gloucester Hunt, that forerunner of our more 
modern organisations, were the names of many who after- 
ward became famous in the history of our country and 
are regarded as the most estimable men of their day 
and generation. 

These merry gentlemen used to meet at first twice, 
afterward once, a week at William Hugg's Inn, Glouces- 
ter Point Ferry, New Jersey, or at the company's ken- 
nel on the banks of the Delaware near this point. They 
would set forth in the keen frosty air, after an early break- 
fast, and with the aid of their faithful hounds, Ringwood 
or Slouch, Tipj)ler or Tuneall, Bumper or Sweet Lips, 
Sing^vell or Doxy, Droner, Toper, Bowler or Bellman, 
or a dozen others bearing equally suggestive names, would 
pursue puss over field and hedge, through woodland or 
marsh, till, sometimes late in the day, they would run the 
wily object of the chase to earth, and then would come 
the task of digging out in order to secure the brush for 
whicli all had laboured so diligently. 

We may form some notion of the appearance of the 
Provincial hunters as they took the field from the follow- 
ing description of the hunting uniform of the club as 
noted in 1774. It consisted of "a dark brown cloth 
coatee, wWh lapels, dragoon pockets, white buttons and 
frock sleeves, buff waistcoat and buff breeches, and a 



black velvet cap." Thus equipped they followed the 
music of the pack, and after the chase sat down with 
sharpened appetites to a " bountiful hunting dinner, 
flowing bowls of governour and sparkling goblets of 
Madeira," joyful in the display of the brush, and fre- 
quently two or three, as trophies, and cheerful in a sense 
of jovial fellowship in a noble sport. 

The fox hunting of the Philadelphia gentlemen was 
not confined to the Jerseys, for we find frequent mention 
of hunts held at places in both Chester and Delaware 
Counties. Jacob Hiltzheimer, who saw most of the sport- 
ing side of Philadelphia life in his time, makes note in 
his diary of fox hunts which occurred with considerable 
frequency at Darby, Tinicum, and even within present 
city limits, for on December 12, 1767, a fox was dropped 
at Centre Woods (where City Hall now stands) , " which," 
he says, " cifForded an agreeable ride after the hounds till 
dark. The fox ran up a tree on the Schuylkill side, and 
when Levi Hollingsworth climbed up after him, it jumped 
down and was killed." For such a clever and unique 
performance one almost regrets that it was not allowed 
to go free. No doubt it would have afforded an equally 
agreeable chase again. 

When the dispute with Great Britain was waxing 
hotter and hotter. Captain Samuel Morris and a number 
of his fox-hunting friends were in sympathy with the 
popular feeling even to the point of preparing for re- 
sistance by arms and when the Philadelphia Troop of 
Light Horse, the oldest military organisation in Penn- 
sylvania and in the United States, was organised in No- 
vember, 1774, out of a membership of twenty-six no less 



than twenty-two were members of the Gloucester Fox 
IIunlin«r Chib. It appears indisputably, on inspection 
of records, that the troop originated in, and was chiefly 
composed of and officered by, the fox-hunting gentlemen 
of the Gloucester Club and members of the old Schuylkill 
Fishing and Fowling Company; many of the sporting 
gentlemen on the muster rolls, it seems, belonged at that 
time to both associations. 

The officers first chosen were captain, Abraham 
Markoe; first lieutenant, Andrew Allen; second lieuten- 
ant, Samuel Morris; cornet, James Mease. Captain 
Markoe, being a Danish subject and hence forbidden by 
the edict of King Christian VIII, of October, 1775, from 
engaging in the war against Great Britain, resigned his 
commission and Samuel Morris w^as elected in his stead. 

Before his resignation. Captain Markoe presented the 
troop with a silken standard of thirteen stripes. This 
fixes the date of the manufacture in 1775 and prior to 
the Union flag raising at Cambridge. Rear Admiral 
Preble in his " History of the Flags of the United States " 

The earliest known instance of tlie thirteen stripes being 
used upon an American banner, is found upon a standard pre- 
sented to the Philadelphia Troop of Light Horse in 1775 . . . 
it is possible, that it may have suggested to him [General Wash- 
ington] the striped Union flag at Cambridge six months later. 

Throughout the Revolutionary struggle, Samuel 
Morris served with distinction both as captain of the City 
Troop, and, in his individual capacity as a member of 
the Committee of Safety in 1775, as a special agent for 



General Washington ^\ith whom he was on terms of great 
intimacy, as a justice of the peace and as a member of 
the Pennsylvania Assembly from 1781 to 1783. 

At some time prior to 1797, the members of the 
Gloucester Fox Hunting Club presented Captain Morris 
with the handsome china punch-bowl already referred to, 
on one side of which a huntsman is taking a fence while 
on the other his long-necked barb is jumping a ditch. 
Captain Morris always retained his love for outdoor 
sports and when too infirm to ride on horseback he often 
appeared at the meets of the Gloucester Hunt riding in 
a chaise. 

It was not until five years after Captain Samuel 
Morris's death that his son, Luke Wistar Morris, bought 
and moved into the house on Eighth Street, but the punch- 
bowl of the foregoing story and so many other personal 
mementos of the captain are there preserved so that the 
place seems instinct with his presence and the connexion 
is appropriate. 




HILADELPHIA has ever offered 
a safe and peaceful asylum to 
refugees of whatever rank or con- 
dition, regardless of creed or the 
country of their birth. In conse- 
quence, not a few engaging char- 
acters, with strange and thrilling 
histories back of them, have walked her streets, some- 
times as merely passing visitors, sometimes as abid- 
ing guests. One of the most picturesque of all these au- 
gust personages was Joseph Bonaparte, Napoleon's elder 
brother, who, when he had in turn worn the crowns of 
Naples and Spain, came here an exile after the erst- 
while master of Europe had paid at Waterloo the reck- 
oning of his overvaulting ambition. 

The ex-king of Naples and Spain found awaiting him 
the cordial and kindly reception his countrymen had al- 
ways met with in the City of Penn. He reached Phila- 
delphia under the title of Comte de Survilliers, a name 
by which he usually chose to be known during his residence 
here, in September, 1815, at about the same time as a 
number of other eminent Bonapartist refugees. At his 
verj^ arrival he experienced an act of signal consideration 
and ur])anity that made a fitting prelude to the cordial 
attitude invariably shown toward him by his American 
neighbours whether at Philadelphia or Bordentown. 
Ilenrv Clav had iust returned from his mission to Ghent, 
and the iSIansion House was full to overflowing with his 



entourage of friends and servants. He, however, cour- 
teously vacated some of his apartments that the ex- 
monarch might be accommodated. 

Joseph Bonaparte, or the Comte de Survilliers as we 
shall call him, rented from Chandler Price the house at 
260 South Ninth Street as a city residence. This house, 
though not Colonial, is of early date and is included 
among the Colonial Homes because of its interesting his- 
tory. It was built about 1812 by a Captain Meany, who 
became involved a few years later in financial difficulties 
and sold it to Chandler Price shortly before the coming 
of the Comte de Survilliers. Not wishing to live there 
himself. Chandler Price rented the property to the count, 
who proceeded to furnish it magnificently. 

The front door at the side of the house, if one may 
be pardoned the Hibernianism, opens into a wide hallway, 
to the east of which, looking out on Ninth Street, is a 
small breakfast-room. All the rest of the front part of 
the house is taken up by a large drawing-room. Back 
of the drawing-room is the dining-room, an apartment of 
most ample dimensions, big enough to hold a regiment. 
The paper that the Count had made for himself still 
hangs on the walls. The cartoons, representing scenes 
from the story of the amours of Cupid and Psyche, were 
taken from the designs executed by the artist David upon 
a commission given him by Napoleon. Thej^ retain 
their beauty to-day in almost pristine freshness. Some 
of the Count's furniture from his estate at Borden- 
town stands in this room. The windows facing west 
open on a broad verandah overlooking the garden. The 
kitchen is in the basement and there are no back build- 



ings. His liouse was always open to all Bonapartists 
and became a gathering-place for them, although as a 
rule he seemed to enjoy, particularly in his country homes, 
" the elegant seclusion of a private gentleman so much 
more than he had the cares and honours of royalty." 

For a summer place, in 1816, he rented Lansdowne 
from the Binghams, who had bought it from the Penns. 
Flere he was a near neighbour to Samuel Breck of Sweet 
Briar, who recorded some of his impressions of the emi- 
nent refugee in his " Recollections." He notes in his 
diary on April 21, 1816: 

Farmer Bones, who keeps the key of Lansdowne House, had 
another opportunity of seeing Joseph today and ventured to ask 
him to his house to take a drink of cider. Joseph went in, took 
a chair, and after drinking praised it much, inquiring wliere Bones 
bought it. 

A little over a year later, in conversation w4th Miss 
Rush, he learned from her that she had dined not long 
since at Joseph Bonaparte's or rather had a second din- 
ner there, " for the ex-king's hours were breakfast at 
eleven o'clock and dinner at eight o'clock." From this 
it is quite plain that the Count did not adopt Philadelphia 
hours for meals, as dinner somewhere about two o'clock 
or three was the order of the day. Supper was at seven 
or sometimes tea was at six and a hot supper was served 
at nine at night. Some years after this Breck notes: 

I met Joseph Bonaparte in the street yesterday. His ap- 
pearance is that of a very plain country gentleman. I thought 
one of tlic nine servants he brought from England might have 
bruslicd Ills hat, which looked rather sliabby. 



He was elsewhere described as " a short, muscular, 
amiable country gentleman," so that the rusticity of his 
mien seems to have impressed more than one person. 

After several years Chandler Price rented the house 
to John Potter, an English merchant, who subsequently 
purchased the property. Thereupon the Comte de Sur- 
villiers then rented from Stephen Girard a house at the 
southeast corner of Twelfth and Market Streets, formerly 
occupied by several of the French ministers. At Borden- 
town Bonaparte bought for himself — the Pennsylvania 
authorities would not consent to his purchasing property 
in this State — an estate called Point Breeze on the river 
bank, and spent a great sum in building and planting. 

Mrs. Potter for a short time after her husband's death 
rented number 260 South Ninth Street to the Philadel- 
phia Club before it moved into its present quarters. She 
afterward returned and her family have lived there ever 
since. It is occupied now by her granddaughter, Mrs. 
Walter James. 



f T the northeast corner of Fourth and 
Arch Streets stands a house whose 
patrician mien compels regard. 
Dingy though it be, shorn of its 
glory, and given over to ends of 
traffic, it arrests the eye and prompts 
a question anent its story. In 1760 
the University of Pennsylvania had it built for the 
use of its provosts, the first of that honourable line, 
and the first to dwell there, being the Reverend William 
Smith, Doctor of Divinity. It was in this same house, 
nearly a hundred years later, that James Russell Lowell, 
then living in Philadelphia, took lodgings for himself and 
his bride. 

From the time of his arrival on the Philadelphia stage 
of events in 1751, Doctor Smith played a prominent 
part in both the social and political life of Colony and 
State and was unceasingly and aggressively active in the 
interests of the Church and education. His pamphlet, 
" The College of Mirania," dealing with educational mat- 
ters, attracted favourable attention and, in 1754, not long 
after his arrival in America, he was chosen to preside 
over the College and Academy of Philadelphia. To his 
intelligence, energy, and activity in its behalf its imme- 
diate and great success was mainly due. He visited 
England on several occasions and solicited aid for the in- 
fant institution, returning with substantial contributions. 
His efforts for the College and Acadeni}^ were unweary- 
ing and his zeal for any worthy public or philanthropic 


i ' , ' ' ' 
', t 'ill 




James Russell I.owi'll lirouiilil liis liride here in 18 1 1 


cause fully employed his splendid equipment of mental 
and physical powers. 

Apart from his ecclesiastical and educational inter- 
ests, he pursued scientific investigations, was most active 
in the formation of the American Philosophical Society, 
edited the " American Magazine," speculated in lands, and 
took an active part in politics. In fact, there were few of 
the affairs of the Province in which his voice was not heard 
or his hand felt. Not only of an active and resourceful 
genius, but of a combative and determined disposition as 
well, in the accomplishment of the ends he was pursuing, it 
is not to be wondered at that he aroused antagonisms nor 
that his enemies seized the opportunity to attack him 
when they could. A happy combination of militant in- 
stinct and good judgement, however, generally brought 
him out on top. 

Attached by personal and political sympathy to the 
Proprietary party, he cordially disliked the Quakers who 
controlled the Assembly, and the German sectaries 
whose support enabled them to do it. In 1758 Doctor 
Smith and Judge Moore of Moore Hall were imprisoned 
at the instance of the Assembly and kept in gaol for three 
months or more — Judge Moore, because of his published 
attack upon that body, the final event in a contention of 
three years' standing, and Doctor Smith, because of his 
alleged aid in the preparation of the obnoxious document. 
As they were unjustly imprisoned they refused to make 
a defence and were eventually released. 

Doctor Smith was not idle during this period of con- 
finement. His classes came to him in gaol, where he lec- 
tured to them as usual, and he was also busied ^vith a 

6 81 


matter of serious moment to his future happiness — his 
eourtship. Miss Rebecca Moore visited her father con- 
stantly, and a previous acquaintance between herself and 
Doctor Smith, through the medium of kinship in misfor- 
tune, grew into a mutually tender affection that resulted in 
tlieir betrothal. After the release of Judge and Provost, 
the wedding was celebrated at Moore Llall. 

Doctor Smith went to England to prosecute an appeal 
to the Crown and had the satisfaction of procuring " His 
Majesty's high displeasure " to be " announced to the 
Assembly at their unwarrantable behaviour in assuming 
power that did not belong to them, and invading the 
royal prerogative and the liberties of the people." Doctor 
Smith continued at the head of the College till the Revo- 
lution, when the Assembly, with the memory of " His 
Majesty's high displeasure " and the cause of it still rank- 
ling, ousted him and proceeded to some ill-advised and 
unjust legislation regarding the institution, reversed in 
large measure, however, in 1789, through Doctor Smith's 

In addition to the town house, Doctor Smith had an 
estate of his own at the Falls of Schuylkill where he lived 
almost entirely during his last years. This house of cu- 
rious design, called at the time of its erection, '* Smith's 
Folly," is still standing near Queen Lane and the Ridge 
Road, though much altered. Doctor Smith was known 
to be fond of a good dinner and once, when he reproved 
one, Godfrey Shronk, for fishing at the Falls on Sun- 
day, the fisherman j^romptly replied, " Doctor, if your 
Sunday dinner were at the bottom of the Schuylkill, you 
would be very apt to fish for it whether it were Sunday 



or not." The Doctor had no further objection to offer 
after that home thrust. 

After an eventful and most useful life, Doctor Smith 
died in 1803 at the house of his son, William Moore 
Smith, at the southeast corner of Fifth and Chestnut 
Streets whither he had been renioved from the Falls by 
his daughter-in-law. 

Connected with the childhood of this same daughter- 
in-law, who was Ann Rudolph, the daughter of Colonel 
Jacob Rudolph, of Darby, a most interesting story is 
told and the tangible mementos of the occurrence are 
still carefully treasured in the family. Her father had 
given her a calf which in time had attained to cowhood 
and was a great pet. When the British troops were en- 
camped in the neighbourhood, Cornwallis's soldiers drove 
off the Rudolph cows and with them Ann's pet. Filled 
with rage and indignation. Mistress Ann, then aged twelve 
or thirteen, went straightway to the British camp and de- 
manded to see Lord Cornwallis. She was led to his tent 
and on seeing him she exclaimed, " I want my cow! " 
His lordship spoke kindly to her and enquired whether 
she hadn't a father or brothers who could have come for 
the cow. " My father is fighting against you and you 
have him shut up in prison in Philadelphia," she answered 
with flashing eyes. Further enquiries brought the infor- 
mation that her brothers were all busied in the same cause. 
Lord Cornwallis, pleased at her spirit, sent the cow back 
with a soldier to drive it and as the little maid was leav- 
ing, he stooped down, took off his knee-buckles set with 
brilliants, and gave them to her for a token, so he said, " to 
remember a British officer bv." 




^^II^^IIE Schuylkill's banks were once a 
veritable paradise. This it is easy 
enough to believe of the part of the 
river that flows through Fairniount 
Park, but it takes a good stretch 
of the imagination to picture to 
oneself that portion of the stream 
below Callowhill Street bridge as ever possessed of allur- 
ing sylvan characteristics. Before factories, w^harves, 
and gas-works blemished its shores, however, heart could 
not Avish a fairer spot than the rolling ground that ex- 
tended all the way to the borders of the reedy marshes 
near the mouth. So, at any rate, it seems, thought the 
Colonial worthies who built their countryseats overlook- 
ing its waters as they wound by, to lose themselves in the 
distance amid beds of rushes and sedgy flats that well- 
nigh conceal the entrance and caused the early Dutch 
explorers to bestow the name " Schuylkill " meaning 
" Hidden River." 

Below^ the Market Street bridge, the site of the old 
" Middle Ferrv," the nearest Colonial mansion still stand- 
ing, ])uilt on one of the highest points of the west bank, 
is the Woodlands, the countryseat of the Hamilton fam- 
ily, from whom a part of West Philadelphia, east of 
Fortieth Street and south of Market, took its name of 
" IlaniiUon Village." The grounds of the Woodlands 
long since became a cemetery, but the old name remained 
witli a new association, far diff'erent from that to which the 



gay society of a century ago was accustomed. The house 
itself, one of the noblest of a period when they were wont 
to build nobly, now contains the offices of the cemetery 
company and shelters the family of the superintendent. 

Like so many of the old houses, the Woodlands has 
no back nor front, or rather, to be more accurate, we should 
say it has two fronts and no back. Architects in the 
eighteenth century thought it not necessary to make a 
great parade of the scullery and kitchen arrangements 
and, for the most part, kept them well out of sight. Their 
existence, however, was fully proved by the excellent 
and bountiful dinners that came thence. 

Across the north front at regular intervals are six 
Ionic pilasters above whose tops runs an elaborately or- 
namented cornice, the whole surmounted by a pediment. 
Before the house is a low and broad paved terrace filling 
the space between the semi-circular bays that project 
from the ends of the building. Between the two middle 
pilasters, a round arched doorway with a fan-light opens 
into the hall. On the south or river front a flight of steps 
ascends to a lofty white-pillared portico from which a 
door opens directly into the oval-shaped ball-room, once 
the scene of many a brilliant social gathering. 

The Hamiltons were noted for their entertaining and 
both at the Woodlands and Bush Hill, the latter their town 
house of which nothing is left but the memory and the 
seldom-heard name of the adjacent neighbourhood, lav- 
ish hospitality was extended to the numerous guests whom 
it pleased them to honour. The land comprised in the 
Woodlands estate came into the possession of the family 
in 1735, being purchased by Andrew Hamilton, the first 



of his race in America. Not long afterward, a house was 
built thereon which was occupied by the second Andrew, 
who in turn was succeeded by his son William. 

Before the Revolution this first house made way for 
the present sjiacious and elegant structure which was 
more in keeping with the luxurious tastes and manner of 
life of its builder, the William Hamilton just mentioned. 
The walls within were hung with valuable paintings and 
in the library were shelves well furnished with the choicest 
books, for the master of the Woodlands was a man of 
catholic interests and withal something of a connoisseur. 
Extensiv^e gardens surrounded the house and contained 
an extraordinary collection of exotic trees and plants as 
well as an abundant collection of such native North Ameri- 
can plants and shrubs as could stand the Philadelphia 
winters. There was a greenhouse whose front, including 
the hothouses on each side, measured one hundred and 
forty feet. When Hamilton was in England after the 
Revolution, his letters to his secretary show the utmost 
solicitude about all his plants and sometimes there is evi- 
dence of considerable irritation because the secretary does 
not remember or, at any rate, does not tell all the minutias 
anent every plant on the place. William Hamilton was a 
born gardener; his secretary was not. This visit to Eng- 
land proved a great incentive to his gardening activities 
and on his return he redoubled his efforts to make the 
grounds of the Woodlands second to none and succeeded. 
He it was who introduced the Ginkgo tree and the 
I^ombardy poplar into America, besides many other 

William Hamilton loved display, kept a retinue of 


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servants, and maintained a splendour of style that quite 
eclipsed the domestic arrangements of most of his neigh- 
bours. This he could well afford to do for he was one 
of the wealthiest men of his day. When he drove abroad 
he commonly went in a chariot-and-four and postillion 
boys in livery. He was fond of giving dinner parties 
and always surrounded his well-laden board with an as- 
semblage of eminent men of various professions in addi- 
tion to the usual coterie of social celebrities. Sunday 
was one of his favourite days for dinner giving and many 
were the notable gatherings that took place on Sunday 
afternoons in spring, summer, and autumn. Thursday 
was also another day always associated with Woodlands 

In 1762 when he graduated at the Academy of Phila- 
delphia — that was before the present house was built — 
he gave a fete for his college friends, among whom were 
men afterward prominently kno\vii in the affairs of the 
State and Nation as Judge Yeates, Judge Peters, Mr. 
Dickinson Sergeant, the Reverend Doctor John Ajidrews 
and Bishop White. This is probably the first University 
class dinner of which we have any record. 

When the Revolution broke out William Hamilton 
at first espoused the patriot side and raised a regiment in 
the neighbourhood of the Woodlands. He was, however, 
opposed to a complete break with the mother country 
and upon the Declaration of Independence he resigned 
his commission. After the British evacuation of Phila- 
delphia he was arrested for high treason, charged with 
assisting the British troops. Notwithstanding the ran- 



corous zeal of his ancestors, he was acquitted and allowed 
to remain in ])osscssion of his estates. 

Until the time of William Hamilton's death in 1811, 
the "Woodlands remained one of the most notable seats 
about the city. Additions were constantlj^ being made 
to the collections both within the house and in the gardens. 
Even after his death, and until the estate passed from the 
hands of the family and heirs and was converted into a 
place of sepulture, it retained not a little of its wonted 
charm and state. 

AVilliam Hamilton of the Woodlands was a nephew 
of Governour James Hamilton to whom William Hallam 
and his Old American Company made application to 
be allowed to open a theatre and give a series of plays in 
Philadelphia. Further than granting this permission, the 
Hamiltons had no particular connexion with the city's 
theatrical history except that they were always interested 
patrons and fautors of progress and art in w^hatever 
form. No better opportunity than this, however, will 
offer to touch upon a subject that played an important 
part in the social life of the period in which the Hamiltons 
figured largely. 

In 1749 an abortive attempt had been made by a band 
of strolling players to give dramatic productions in Phila- 
delphia. Pursuant to the permission granted, the drama 
was really introduced in Philadelphia in April, 1754, in 
a storehouse on Water Street near Pine, belonging to Mr. 
William Plumstead. Despite the storm of opposition on 
the part of the Friends and the stricter sort among the 
sects, this building was secured and fitted up as a theatre 
and the company started its run of twenty-four plays 



with their attendant afterpieces, having previously given 
their assurance that they would offer " nothing indecent 
and immoral." The first performance consisted of " The 
Fair Penitent " followed by " Miss in Her Teens." The 
venture was so great a success that the authorities ex- 
tended the time beyond the limit at first set for the stay 
of the troupe. 

The forebears of modern theatre-goers paid for their 
amusement at the following rates in 1754: 

Box, six shillings; pit, four shillings; and gallery, two shil- 
lings, six pence. 

The performances began at six o'clock, as the players deemed 
" it would be a great inconvenience " to keep their patrons out 
late. When the play was over, link-boys and servants were wait- 
ing to light their masters and mistresses home. If the weather 
was wet and the walking bad, the fine ladies and gentlemen, who 
had just been regaled by the art of the Thespians, were obliged 
to wend their way gingerly on clogs and mud-pattens at the im- 
minent risk of spoiling their silks and satins. 

Years after this, when the old Southwark Theatre was in the 
heyday of its glory, the mud and water in bad weather were se- 
rious obstacles to those attending the plays, carriages were very 
frequently stuck in the mire, and on one occasion, General Wash- 
ington had to wait an hour after the play before his coach could 
get to the door. Pedestrians had to walk on planks laid to the 
door of the theatre, and at last, when a brick pavement was laid 
from Lombard Street, its advent was hailed with delight. 

The first theatre in Philadelphia, purposely erected for the 
exhibition of plays, stood at the southwest corner of Vernon and 
South or Cedar Streets, and was opened in 1759 by David 
Douglass, the manager of the American company started by the 
Hallams. A few vears later, in 1766, the first theatre at South 



and Vernon Streets proving too small, another was built in South 
Street above Fourth, and Hiis old Southwark or South Street 
Theatre continued a fashionable phxce of amusement long after 
the new theatre in Chestnut Street was opened in 1794. 

An amusing incident showing the rancorous anti-theatrical 
spirit of some, even after the theatre was fully established, comes 
to light in a letter to the Pennsylvania Gazette of 1768. The 
correspondent (he was not a Friend) feels deeply outraged be- 
cause, a few evenings previous to his communication, being invited 
out to tea with a company, to most of whom he was an entire 
stranger, one of the gentlemen present had generously bestowed 
tickets for the play upon all who were there. Being a stranger, 
he had accepted the ticket out of complaisance, but was determined 
not to use it. The company was much embarrassed about using 
the tickets, for some of them had been minded to go to St. Paul's 
Church that evening to hear a sermon. It was finally agreed to 
settle the question, whether they should hear a sermon or see a 
play, by drawing cards. The result was in favour of the theatre. 
The scandalised correspondent, having no taste for such exhibi- 
tions, and being too good to go to such an infamous place, with 
rare generosity bestowed the ticket, which granted entrance to 
the *' temple of perdition,'* on a negro. The " virtuous slave," 
instead of ha\-ing his morals corrupted, " sold the ticket for half 
price, with which he immediately purchased a prayer-book " ! The 
slave's example is highly commended by the correspondent. His 
own virtue (.'') in giving a ticket to an "immoral place" to an 
irresponsible slave apparently did not strike him. His conduct 
was much like that of a young woman, who, feeling that her fond- 
ness for flummery and furbelows was dragging her soul to perdi- 
tion, " took 'cm all off and gave 'em to her sister." 

At the time of the Revolution, theatres were closed for two 
reasons: in the first place, the Continental Congress had recom- 
mended that all unnecessary expenses and extravagances should 



be dispensed with, and in the second place, nearly all the actors 
were Loyalists, and the patriots commonly felt that " loyal sen- 
timents from the mouths of equally loyal players " would not 
aid the cause of liberty. The actors, therefore, their occupations 
gone, betook themselves either to England or the West Indies, 
those more loyal colonies of George III. The British, on the 
other hand, Durang tells us in his history of the American stage, 
fostered the theatre at every town: "Wherever the British army 
was garrisoned during the Revolutionary War, there did they 
declaim Shakespeare and other productions of English authors, 
if a dramatic temple could be found." The officers began their 
theatrical career in Boston, and General Burgoyne appears in 
the role of playwright, giving us " The Maid of the Oaks," " The 
Heiress," and a farce entitled " The Blockade of Boston." 

During the British occupancy of Philadelphia, the theatre in 
South Street was reopened, and the officers diligently set about 
giving plays for their own pastime and the amusement of the 
Loyalist citizens. The proceeds were given for the relief of 
widows and orphans of soldiers. Major Andre and Captain De- 
lancy, both talented artists, busied themselves painting scenes. 
The drop curtain painted by Major Andre, remained in use until 
the theatre was destroyed in 1821. 

According to the description given of him by a contemporary 
employee of the theatre, " Major Andre was a very slight figured 
young man, with a round, fair face, and fair hair. He was very 
active, always hopping about the stage, and never out of humour." 
He was once heard to say that he " could out-hop, skip, and 
jump any man about the theatre." From the same source, we 
learn that play-books were very scarce, and all the officers used 
to sit around a table on the stage, trying to copy their parts 
out of one book. When any piece was to be rehearsed, the sol- 
diers' wives and other idlers would flock about the back door 
and peer in at what was going forward. 



Many good plays were creditably presented by the officers, 
and fully a})preciatcd by the audience. General Howe often at- 
tended and sat in one of the stage boxes, over which hung the 
British anns, the same box afterwards used by General Wash- 
ington when President, the British arms being replaced by those 
of the United States. 

In the early days, reserved seats were unknown, and it was 
the custom for people to send their servants to get good seats 
and occupy them until they arrived themselves. It was found 
necessary to make a regulation to the effect that all servants 
must be out of the theatre before the curtain rose, and also that 
no children in laps would be admitted. 

Notice had to be given that no airs would be played except 
those that had been requested the day before the performance, and 
that no demands for popular tunes would be acceded to at the 
time of the play. 

Patrons were requested to bring the exact amount of the price 
of their admissions, as much difficulty was occasioned in making 
change. In some cases, no one was admitted without a ticket 
previously purchased, as the doorkeepers were prohibited from 
taking money. 

Trouble was often caused by gentlemen insisting on going 
back of the scenes, and sometimes they got on the stage and se- 
riously interfered with the performance of the play. This was 
quite a common occurrence on benefit nights. 

It is amusing in these days of iced air for cooling theatres in 
warm weather to note early attempts at making the Southwark 
Theatre comfortable in summer. We are told that " durincr the 
month of June (1791), in order to keep the place cool, two fire- 
engines were employed daily, to play on the roof and against the 

During the latter part of the Revolution, and for some time 
after the close of the war, dramatic affairs were in sorry plight, 



but in 1786, the Old American Company, as it called itself, re- 
turned in all its glory, and the theatre in Southwark once more 
opened its doors to thronging audiences. President Washington 
frequently attended the play, and whenever he did so, his pres- 
ence always filled the house with a large following of the most 
prominent people. He was especially fond of " The School for 
Scandal " and " The Poor Soldier," and both these plays were 
often acted at his request. 




ESCENDING the Schuylkill, the 
next Colonial seat of interest on the 
right bank of the river below the 
Woodlands is the Bartram House 
which, with the surrounding gar- 
dens, the City now owns. The Lower 
Ferry or Gray's Ferry, it was 
known by both names, was originally the means by 
which almost all southern and western travel entered 
the city so that it was an extremely important place. 
Just south of this spot, in 1728, John Bartram bought 
a tract of land afterward to become famous as a 
botanical garden. On this farm was a small house dating 
from Swedish times but insufficient, presumably, for 
the needs of Bartram for, in 1730, he began to build what 
may be considered the main portion of the house and fin- 
ished it in 1731, perpetuating the date of its completion by 
setting a stone in the gable bearing the inscription: 

0Eo:s snzn 

(May God save) 

That he actually laboured on the walls with his own 
hands is, perhaps, too much to say positively, but at any 
rate tradition, and seemingly reliable tradition at that, 
lias it that he did. Of the many successive alterations and 
additions the house has undergone and of which it shows 
more traces inside than out, it appears that the last must 


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have been made somewhere near 1770, at which time he 
placed a carven stone above his study window bearing the 

It is God alone almyty Lord 
The holy One by me ador'd. 
John Bartram, 1770. 

The Bartram House, like the Woodlands, though by 
no means nearly so pretentious, has interesting fronts 
both east and west. The east or river front with its 
great roughly hewn stones, its rude pillars, its cluster- 
ing ivy, and the rose vines by the windows has an air of 
mingled refinement and rusticity, a strange combination 
of simplicity and stateliness. There is nothing quite like 
it anywhere else. The usual entrance is on the west side 
of the house by a trellis-shaded doorway at each side of 
which are little Dutch seats. 

Within, the house discloses no particular plan, as in- 
deed it could scarcely be expected to since it has grown 
through so many years by capricious additions, made 
when divers occasions and times demanded. In the space 
it contains, without appearing spacious, and in the unex- 
pected way that rooms multiply, it is not unlike some 
of the old Dutch houses of the Hudson. 

iThe story is told of Bartram that one day as he was 
ploughing he stopped to rest in the shade of a tree. By 
chance he plucked a daisy as he sat there and musing 
upon its structure was impelled to learn something con- 
cerning its history, habits, and uses. From this small 
beginning came the impulse that spurred him to the studies 
and investigations that placed him in the foremost rank 



of botanists. Ordinarily in autumn, when he could spare 
the time from his farm labours, Bartram travelled exten- 
sively through the Colonies gathering plants for his 

The great cypress tree, twenty-seven feet in circum- 
ference, whose lifeless trunk is still standing, he brought 
with him as a seedling in his saddle-bags from Florida. 
The rare trees and shrubs of which the garden is full he 
collected with indefatigable enthusiasm during many 
years. Some of them have grown to a size rarely seen, 
such, for instance, as the box trees which are exceeded 
only by those at the Grange. Throughout his life Par- 
tram strove with untiring zeal to make his botanical col- 
lections as complete as the limited facilities at his com- 
mand would permit, and what he accomplished in this 
respect was little short of marvellous. 

Hector St. John, in his travels, gives a striking pict- 
ure of the simple mode of life in the Bartram household 
in 1785, when William Bartram was master in his 
father's stead, maintaining everj^thing both within the 
house and outside as it had been during the lifetime of 
the elder Bartram. At the head of the long table, says 
St. John, sat the master, below him sat family and guests, 
still lower at the board were the men who laboured on the 
farm, and lowest of all were the negro slaves. The fare 
was plentiful and well cooked. Notwithstanding this 
exceedingly patriarchal and democratic custom of the 
household, Bartram cherished the traditions of his fam- 
ily's descent and had his arms properly blazoned hanging 
on the wall. 

As one wanders about the gardens to-day, it is no 



unusual thing to chance upon some rare plant, brought 
thither and naturalised more than a century ago, not to 
be found anywhere else perhaps for hundreds of miles. 
Everything about the place is impressed with Bartram's 
personality. The inscriptions on the wall, the old cider- 
mill hewn out of the rock by the river bank, the grave 
of a favourite Indian slave not many rods away, the 
great stone trough for gold-fish by the east end of the 
house — all these seem in some indefinable way to reflect 
the presence of that simple-minded great man, the father 
of American botanists. 

John Bartram was succeeded bv his son William, also 
a distinguished botanist, and it was during his ownership 
of the place that the ornithologist, Alexander Wilson, 
newly come from Scotland, became a frequent visitor at 
the Bartram home. 

After William Bartram's death the oardens were con- 
ducted by Colonel Carr, his son-in-law. In the early 
forties Andrew Eastwick, who had recently come back 
from an extended stay in Russia where he had been em- 
ployed to build railroads, bought the estate, and in 1851 
built a large mansion in another part of the grounds. In 
1893 the City acquired the old house and a portion of the 
grounds, long since abandoned as a place of residence and 
thickly overgrown, and in 1897 acquired the remainder, 
making the estate into a park. The Bartram descendants 
have furnished the house and kept it in admirable condition. 



F all the Georgian houses in the 
Philadelphia neighbourhood none has 
more striking individuality, none 
is of purer architectural type than 
Whitby Hall. Of all the Colonial 
homes in the same vicinage, none 
has richer memories of a vigor- 
ous and engaging personality among its early mas- 
ters; none has a closer bond with the picturesque social 
life of a period of robust and ingenuous manners and 
morals. It is a house on which the individuality of its first 
inmates is indelibly impressed. Its very name links it 
with the old Yorkshire home of the many-sided man who 
reared it and dwelt within its walls. 

On this plantation James Coultas, merchant, ship 
owner, farmer, mill owner, fox hunter, vestrj'^man, soldier, 
judge, High Sheriff of Philadelphia from 1755 to 1758, 
and enthusiastic promoter of all philanthropic and public 
enterprises, established himself in 1741. Until very re- 
cently, the house stood on the southern brow of a hill rising 
from the banks of the Ameasaka, a small stream that issued 
at this point from the seclusion of a shady combe and 
flowed out into a broad, peaceful meadow before joining 
its waters with Cobb's Creek. A lane, heavily shaded by 
giant sycamores, dipped down into the dale, crossed the 
Ameasaka on a stone-arched bridge, and climbed the hill 
past \Vhitb3''s gates. This road connecting the Darby 


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Road with the Baltimore and West Chester Pikes was 
once called Coultas's, afterward Gray's, Lane. 

Now the march of city extension has changed the face 
of nature. Gray's Lane exists no longer at this point. 
Fifty-eighth Street has been cut through and crosses the 
ravine on a filled causeway that chokes the Ameasaka 
and blocks the mouth of its valley. A network of streets 
has been opened where, but a few years since, were open 
rolling fields, and multitudes of jerry-built houses have 
sprung up round about so that Whitby, nestling among 
its great spreading trees, a proud and venerable land- 
mark of braver days, surrounded by the brummagem, 
pinchbeck growth of a sordid age, must now be described 
as located at Fifty-eighth Street and Florence Avenue. 

Colonel Coultas occupied the house he found there, 
making little change until 1754, when he added the beau- 
tiful and stately western end with its high-pitched roof, 
the gables facing south and north with quaint oval win- 
dows to light the cockloft. The walls, not on one side 
only, as is often the case, but all the way round, are built 
of carefully squared and dressed native grey stone. On 
the south front is a flag-paved piazza, and around the 
western and northern sides runs a penthouse with grace- 
fully coved cornice. On the north front is a tow^er-like 
projection in which the stairway ascends with broad land- 
ings. The low doorway in this tower has always been 
used on occasions of large gatherings at Whitby, whether 
grave or gay, because it admits to the wide hall running 
clear through the western wing, giving admittance to the 
large rooms on either side. 

The doorway and windows in the tower are all sur- 


rounded witli brick trims, which give both variety and 
distinction against the grey stone walls. It may be re- 
marked that this is an architectural treatment not often 
met with near Philadelphia. In the top of the pediment 
with its dentilled cornice, a bull's-eye light, also surrounded 
with brick trim, is of particular interest because it was 
a porthole glass from one of Colonel Coultas's favourite 
ships, and was set there because of a cherished sentiment. 
On the peak and corners of the tower pediment three urns 
add a note of state. 

All the woodwork and sundry embellishments of the 
1754 addition were fetched overseas in Colonel Coultas's 
ships. The pilasters and cornices in the hall and the 
spindles of the banisters are exceptionally fine. Rosettes 
are carved in the dogears of the door trims, and the 
cheeks and soffits of the jambs are set with bevel-flush 
panels. In the parlour the fireplace opening is faced 
with black marble brought from Scotland, while the carv- 
ing of the overmantel and the panelling are unsurpassed 
for either execution or design. The central panel above 
the fireplace is three feet wide and nearly six feet long, 
and not a joint can be discovered in it. Below it is a 
band of exquisitely wrought floriated carving in high 
relief. Although it is possible to find more elaborate 
woodwork, it is rarely that one meets with a degree of 
elaboration tempered with such dignified restraint and 
consummate good taste. 

In 1842 the then owners of Whitby Hall, conceiving 
that the oldest part of the house had fallen into irrep- 
arable decay, demolished it and built the present eastern 
wing with scrupulous care that it should match in style 


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and texture the structure of 1754. One could wish that 
they had repaired instead of building anew, but their 
work was done so well that the effect of the whole is har- 
monious and their effort is witness to a degree of archi- 
tectural intelligence scarcely to be looked for at a time 
when such matters were not sufficiently regarded. The 
1754 end of the house is, therefore, the only old part, but 
it is the most conspicuous portion and forms the subject 
of the illustrations both inside and out. 

On the south front, on the side of a steep terrace, 
a doorway opens into a cavernous tunnel that connects 
with the cellar of the house. Through this tunnel fire- 
wood and supplies were taken in. Once, in the old days, 
the slaves all became hilarious and continued in that happy 
state of undue exhilaration so long that an explanation 
was sought. An investigation showed that a cask of 
wine had been waylaid in its passage through the tun- 
nel to the cellar and that the blacks were taking toll of 
it each time they went by. East of the house are the 
barns and slave quarters that were there in 1741 and 
earlier — a queer, conglomerate pile, on the face of the 
slope, built of quarry-faced rubble, and of architecture 
absolutely nondescript. It might, perhaps, be African. 

Born near Whitby in Yorkshire, James Coultas re- 
ceived his early education in England, emigrating to the 
Colony of Pennsylvania at some time prior to 1732. Of 
an active and energetic disposition, and endowed with 
social qualities well calculated to attach numerous friends, 
he soon atttracted favourable attention. That he was es- 
teemed by his associates for his agreeable manners is 
proved by the fact that he was chosen as one of the char- 



ter members of the " Colony in Schuylkill," an organisa- 
tion in which, since its beginning, good-fellowship has been 
held a prime requisite. Of his early pursuits and busi- 
ness activities, we know little save that he was supposedly 
busy farming his plantation in Blockley and engaged in 
various private enterprises by which he amassed a con- 
siderable fortune. Of his family aft'airs we know that 
in ^Jarch, 1735, he married at Christ Church, Elizabeth, 
daughter of Mary and Joseph Ewen, of Germanto^vn. 
At the date of this marriage, jMrs. Coultas's mother 
(Joseph Ewen having died many years before) had long 
been the wife of George Gray of Gray's Ferry and thus 
came about the close connexion between the Coultases 
and Grays that apparently led James Coultas to settle 
at Whitby Flail, not far from the Grays, and later led 
to a strengthening of the family tie when James Coultas's 
niece, jNIartha Ibbetson, became the spouse of his wife's 
half-brother, George Gray. 

As Colonel Coultas died without issue it was to this 
niece, JNIartha Ibbetson Gray, that Whitby Hall passed 
by inheritance and the estate has descended to her great- 
great-grandchildren, the present occupants. Whitby is 
one of the comparatively few estates that has not been 
alienated from the family of the first owner. 

From 1744 to 1755, Colonel Coultas held the lease of 
the Middle Ferry (where Market Street bridge now 
stands) from the City Council. He was always foremost 
in any movement for good roads or the developement of 
natural resources, particularly in the matter of making 
streams navigable. He was also, in 1748, one of the cap- 
tains of the Associators, a battery for the defence of 


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Philadelphia from French insolence to which fuller allu- 
sion is made elsewhere. In 1756, when Indian incursions 
were assuming a menacing attitude, he was chosen lieu- 
tenant-colonel of the county regiment. In the half cen- 
tury preceding the Revolution no citizen was more en- 
terprising, energetic, and public-spirited than James 
Coultas, and the esteem in which he was held and the con- 
fidence placed in him are shown by the public offices he 
filled. He was repeatedly commissioned justice of the 
peace, from 1755 to 1758 he was High Sheriff of the 
county, and in 1765 he was appointed judge of the 
Orphans' Court, Quarter Sessions, and Common Pleas. 
Besides these offices he was frequently named on various 
commissions where the public interest was concerned. 

It was principally owing to the initiative of Colonel 
Coultas that the first steps were taken to render the 
Schuylkill navigable. He was one of the commissioners 
to survey that stream, and first succeeded in showing that 
it was possible for large boats to go above the Falls. He 
was zealous in his efforts to prove what he confidently 
believed could be done and, actuated by a waggish hu- 
mour, adopted the following artifice to gain public atten- 
tion and interest and impress the public mind. In the 
Pennsylvania Gazette of November 1, 1764, appeared the 
following advertisement ; 

This is to give Notice that James Coultas, Esq., one of the 
Commissioners for clearing Schuylkill, hath this Day made a Bett 
of One Hundred Pounds current Money of Pennsylvania, with 
Captain Oswald Eve, that he, the said James Coultas, will, on 
Saturday the 3d of November inst., at Ten o'Clock in the morn- 
ing, take up two Flat Loads of Hay from the lower Part of the 



Big Falls in the said river Schuylkill to the Ferry WharfF, ad- 
joining the Land of the Reverend William Smith, in 30 Minutes 
from the Time the Word is given to Pull away. If the Weather 
that Day should prove bad, it ^vill be deferred to the Monday 
following, the same Time of Day. As the clearing and making 
Rivers navigable, must be of the greatest Advantage of the Com- 
munity in general, and raise the Value of their Lands and lower 
tlie Price of Firewood and Timber in the City, it is desired 
that all Persons who have the good of their Country at Heart 
will give their Attendance, as it must be more laudable than to 
spend their Time and Money to go and see Horse racing, the 
Consequence of which is the Corruption of Youth, being an En- 
couragement to Vice and Idleness. 

James Coultas. 

A few days afterward the following appeared in the 
newspaper : 

This is to acquaint the Public that, agreeable to the Notice 
given by me, I did, on Saturday, the 3d Day of this inst. take 
up the Great Falls on Schuylkill, to the Ferry Wharff two Flats, 
with 4323 Pounds of Hay, in 21 minutes from the Word given 
Pull away, under the Disadvantage of the River having less Water 
than for severall Years past, owing to the dry Season. Great 
Numbers attended, and were highly pleased with the Performance. 
And it is to be hoped that all Persons who have Lands adjoining 
the said River, will further contribute to enable the Commis- 
sioners to make it further useful, by clearing other Obstructions, 
as what is already done hath raised the Price of Lands. I must 
now beg to be excused for my inserting in my former Advertise- 
ment a Bctt laid of 100 Pounds with Captain Oswald Eve; I be- 
fore the Performance acquainted all my Friends there was no 
Wager laid, but the name of that drew there the greater number 
of Spectators. James Coultas. 



Shortly after this episode we find him pushing another 
public improvement in the beneficent role of road-maker. 
The newspaper advertisement of December 13, 1764, tells 
its own story: 

Whereas Good Roads are of the gi-eatest Use and Benefit 
to the Inhabitants, both as to Profit and Pleasure; and altho' the 
Legislature of this Province hath taken much Pains to make 
Laws for the Amendment of the Highways, yet they do not seem 
to answer for the end thereby intended, 

I do therefore humbly propose to undertake the Amendment 
of the Road from the first Hill to the Westward of the Lower 
Ferry on Schuylkill to the Borough of Chester, Deemed the Dis- 
tance of about eleven Miles, making Stone Bridges over all the 
Runs and Hollows in the said Road, if Money to defray the Ex- 
pense of the same can be raised by Subscription from the Inhabi- 
tants, Travellers, County Commissioners, and the Overseers of 
the Highways. I have given Two Thousand Pounds Security 
to the Treasurers of the Counties of Philadelphia and Chester, and 
their Successors that the Money so raised shall be expended for 
the aforesaid Use, and no other whatsoever. 

James Coultas. 

That he was conscientiously rigorous in the discharge 
of his official duties may be gathered from the following 
entry in an old account book of the Overseers of the Poor, 
for the year 1758: 

Nov. 9th. By cash of James Coultas late Sheriff, being a 
fine paid by Loughlane McClane for kissing of Osborn's wife, 
after his commissions and writing bond were deducted, £2-1, 5s. 

When such a strenuous man as Colonel Coultas was 
sheriff, the kissing of other men's wives was apparently 
a very expensive diversion. 



111 1750, Colonel Coultas, among his other interests, 
owiied the large sawmill on Cobb's Creek north of the 
Blue Bell Inn, and a few years later, in the same neigh- 
bourhood, we see him actively instrumental in the erec- 
tion of the Church of St. James, at Kingsessing, a fine 
specimen of English masonry and highly creditable to 
his taste. It was he who laid the cornerstone in 1762. 

Colonel Coultas rode to hounds and entered into the 
wonted diversions of his day with just as much zest as 
he displayed in quitting himself of the more serious busi- 
nesses of public and private life, and was all the better 
for it. Jacob Hiltzheimer, that bibulous, gossipy, garru- 
lous old diarist who has left us such charming pictures of 
the gayer side of Philadelphia life in the eighteenth cen- 
tury, tells us that on December 27, 1765, he set off in the 

morning at five o'clock, with Thomas Mifflin, Sam Miles, Jacob 
Hollingsworth and young Rudolph from my house; proceeded to 
Darby to meet the other gentlemen hunters ; from there to Captain 
Coultas's house, and to the woods. About thirty-five gentlemen 
attended with thirty dogs but no fox was secured. 

Despite the bountiful breakfast they doubtless had at 
the meet at Whitby Hall, it was discouraging to get no fox. 

Colonel Coultas hunted not only with the men who 
lived immediately around him but was also a member of 
the Gloucester Fox Hunting Club. Another time-hon- 
oured and still more ancient convivial club of which 
Colonel Coultas was an interested, and as mentioned be- 
fore a charter, member, was the Schuylkill Fishing Com- 
pany, or, as it was then known, the Colonj^ in Schuylkill, 
to become at a later date the State in Schuylkill. 



Showing eastern wing thut replaced original house built in first half eighteenth eenlury 


James Coultas died in the latter part of January, 1768, 
after rendering signal benefits to the neighbourhood of 
Philadelphia that cannot be too higlily rated, and serv- 
ing the city " both as an official and private citizen with 
zeal, integrity, and intelligence." His widow and her 
half-brother, George Gray, were the executors of his es- 
tate, and we get a living touch of the humbler side of life 
at Whitby from part of the advertisement announcing 
the sale of his effects: 

N.B. To be sold at private sale 6 Negroes, viz. a Negroe 
man, a cooper by trade, a very good workman; liis wife, a very 
good house wench, with one female child, two years old ; one other 
Negroe woman, a good house and dairy maid; likewise two twins, 
a boy and Girl, ten years old, smart lively children. 

From the Grays, Whitby passed by inheritance to the 
Thomases who had extensive family connexions in Mary- 
land. There is a tradition that when a law was enacted in 
Pennsylvania freeing slaves who were here for six months, 
a relay would be kept at Whitby for somewhat less than 
that period, then sent back to Maryland, their places being 
taken by a fresh relay from below Mason and Dixon's 
Line. ' Thus, bj^ a series of black relays, Whitby was always 
worked by slave labour. Whether there were any " smart 
lively children, ten j^ears old," among them we are not told. 

Disappointmg as it may seem, no ghosts haunt Whitby 
Hall. The explanation of this lack appears to be that 
all the occupants have spent such exemplary lives and tar- 
ried till such a ripe old age that they were perfectly ready 
to depart when the time came for them to pass on and 
join the great throng of those who have gone before. 



OLITUDE was a name not only be- 
fitting the former character of the 
place but also according well with 
the recluse mood of its builder, John 
Penn, who went thither to escape the 
vexings of a perverse and naughty 

John Penn, " the poet," was a grandson of the Founder 
and a son of Thomas Penn and Lady Juliana Fermor, 
daughter of the Earl of Pomfret. He was born Feb- 
ruary 23, 1760, and proceeded a Master of Arts from the 
University of Cambridge in 1779. A scholarly man, he 
travelled extensively in Europe and became a liberal 
jDatron of art, something of a poet, and an idealist. 

Nervous, near-sighted, of an ardent temperament, 
he was inclined to be an enthusiastic American. He came 
over to look after the Proprietary interests in Pennsyl- 
vania in 1783 and lived at first in Philadelphia at Sixth 
and ^larket Streets. He soon discovered, however, that 
the State was not disposed to honour his claims, made un- 
der hereditary rights, and so decided to remain an Eng- 
lishman, concluding that the people of this country were 
not lovers of justice. 

He lived here for four years, nevertheless, and pur- 
chased for six hundred pounds fifteen acres of the high, 
west bank of the Schuylkill River where the Zoological 
Ciardcns now are. Here, in 1785, he erected his two- 



storey box which he called the " Solitude " after a lodge 
belonging to the Duke of Wiirtemburg. 

The house was literally a box, foursquare, twenty-six 
feet in each direction. Extending entireh'^ across the 
Schujdkill front was a large parlour from whose windows, 
opening on a portico, there was a fine view both up and 
down the river. From here Penn could see the ramparts 
on the once-wooded Fairmount on the farther shore, the 
site of the British entrenchments when Sir William Howe 
was in the cit^^ All the space on the first floor not occu- 
pied by the parlour is given over to a hall, nine feet wide, 
extending across the whole house. In the southwest cor- 
ner a stairway, with hand- wrought iron railing, rises to the 
second floor. In this storey is the library, a room about 
fifteen feet square, with bookcases built into the walls. 
On the shelves were about six hundred volumes, in which 
number the classics and English poets were largely rep- 
resented. To the north of the library is a small bed- 
room connecting with another bedroom in the centre of 
the house. In his own room was an alcove for his hours 
of rest and a secret door by which he shut himself from 
intrusive friends. On the third floor are several more 
bedrooms and the roof rises in a hip broken by two dor- 
mers. The cellars are deep and roomy for wine, and 
an underground passage communicates with the kitchen 
built separately about twenty-five feet distant from the 
rest of the house. Altogether Solitude made a most 
comfortable and convenient establishment for a bachelor 
of quiet tastes. 

John Penn loved solitude and spent days in reading 
his own poems, sitting in his sunny sitting-room, dreaming 



the summer days away in the companionship of Dante, 
Chaucer, Petrarch, Tasso, and Anacreon. The stucco 
work on ceihng- and cornice in this room is very beautiful 
and was brought from England. The chair rail and sub- 
base are of carved wood. A poem published in London 
in 1801 gives a view of " The Solitude " with a picture 
showing a favourite wiiite dove flying close along the 
lawn, whose death his verses deplore: 

Thine, oft I said (nor hoped so near thy end), 
Are all things round, the grove, the cloudless sky; 
While cheers the enlivening sky, sport and enjoy; 
Thine are yon oaks that o'er the stream impend, 
And rocks that, as I stray with musing eye, 
Or wander from the shed, can never cloy. 

It is said that John Penn planted every tree about 
the house and there are few primeval ones remaining. 
He had pleasant neighbours. In fine weather the good 
fellows of the " State in Schuylkill " met at the " Castle " 
on the Warner farm just north of him on the other side 
of the point where the Girard Avenue bridge now touches 
the western shore. His cousin, Governour John Penn, 
lived at " Lansdowne " just above and farther on was 
Judge Peters at Belmont. 

He seems to have been friendly with these and with 
most of the best citizens, gay parties coming to his place 
in boats to spend the week-ends. Washing-ton spent the 
day with him during the sitting of the Constitutional Con- 
vention in Philadelphia. 

Here he lived in sweet peace until 1788, when he re- 
turned to England and suddenly developed an interest 



in worldly affairs, erecting a handsome residence at Stoke. 
He became sheriff of Bucks in 1798, member of Parlia- 
ment in 1802, and was the royal Governour of the island 
of Portland in Dorset from 1805 for many years. Cam- 
bridge made him an LL.D. in 1811, and he also became 
lieutenant colonel of the First Troop of the First Regi- 
ment Royal Bucks Yeomanry. 

While he courted only the muses in the wilderness of 
the Schujdkill, he formed in his declining years the 
" Outinian Society," whose purpose it was to encourage 
young men and young women to enter wedlock. This 
matrimonial society sent out a blank to be filled in under 
fifty-one different headings describing the eligible parties. 
It was called " The True Friend, or a Table showing the 
Exact Situation in Life and Personal Qualities of Known 
Marriageable Ladies." Finally, Mr. Penn's social be- 
nevolence shifted to the promotion of an invention of 
lamp labels for street corners and an improved breakfast 
waiter. He was indeed a many-sided man. 

Despite his efforts to land others in the holy estate 
of matrimony, he very inconsistently died unmarried, June 
21, 1834, and the Solitude passed to Granville Penn, 
his youngest brother, who held it for ten years. It then 
descended to Granville John Penn, a nephew, who died in 
March, 1867. Granville John Penn was a great grand- 
son of the Founder and the last private owner of the 

He came to Philadelphia in 1851, a dapper and well- 
preserved middle-aged gentleman. The city made much 
of him, he was lionised by Councils, the Historical Society, 
and bv all who could trace ancestral connexion with the 



Penns in former years. In return for these attentions 
he gave a grand " Fete Chanipetre " at the Solitude, with 
lavishly furnished marquees and a collation to which the 
quality of the city was invited. This was the last time 
a Penn was at the Solitude, and it was the last property 
here of a family that once owned the State. Without 
a tenant for some years it passed into the ownership of 
Fairmount Park in 1867 and is now well preserved in 
its original state as the administration building of the 
Zoological Society. 




OUNT PLEASANT is fitly so 
named. Surely no pleasanter place 
for habitation could be found than 
the spot where this noble eighteenth 
century house rears its balustraded 
roof above a sea of surrounding 
greenery on the east side of the 
Schuylkill not far north of the Girard Avenue bridge. 
The site commands a broad view upstream and down and 
over the wooded slopes of the farther shore. Though in 
summer the density of the foliage somewhat obscures the 
prospect, at other seasons, when the trees are less fully 
clad, the eye sweeps the valley for miles. 

Then it is, as the once elegant countryseats are seen 
crowning every hill, that one feels how ample and almost 
princely must have been the manner of life that prevailed 
there in the long past days when the young city was still 
miles distant from these sylvan fastnesses. In Virginia 
the James River, in all the pride of the manorial estates 
that lined its banks, could not have surpassed the loveli- 
ness and charm of the Schuylkill winding among rolling 
highlands on whose summits spacious homes of comely 
dignity sheltered some of the most distinguished citizens 
of the metropolis of the Colonies. 

Society was gayer, more polished, and wealthier in 
Philadelphia than an\^vhere else this side of the Atlantic 
and the affluence and culture of the people were reflected 
in the houses in which they chose to spend their summers 

8 113 


or sometimes to live the year round. Of no locality was 
this truer than on both the east and west shores of the 
Sehuylkill, whose waters imparted an agreeable element 
of life to the scene and at the same time supplied the best 
of fish to grace tlie boards of gentry who were notoriously 
a(l(h"cted to the j^leasures of the table. 

In one of the choicest spots of this fair paradise of 
peace and plenty, Captain John ^lacpherson bought land 
in September, 17()1, and set to building a great house, 
of almost baronial aspect, that commands consideration 
by its architectural presence alone, quite apart from the 
rich historic glamour that hangs over it. From the west 
or river front of the house, the land falls away rapidly 
so that the driveway approach is brought up to the east 
front. East and west fronts alike are of imposing mien. 
A high foundation of carefully squared stones is pierced 
by iron-barred basement "windows set in stone frames. 
Above this massive grisly base, the thick stone walls are 
coated with yellow-grey rough-cast. Heavy quoins of 
brick at the corners and, at the north and south ends of 
the building, great quadruple chimneys joined into one 
at the top by arches, give the structure an air of more 
than usual solidity. 

A broad flight of stone steps, their iron balustrades 
overgrown with a bushy mass of honeysuckle, leads up to 
a doorway of generous breadth. The pillars at each side 
of tlie door and tlie superimposed pediment, the ornate 
Palladian window immediately above on the second floor 
and, a])()ve tliat again, the corniced pediment springing 
from the eaves, all contribute to set a stamp of courtly 
distinction upon the pile, a distinction for which only 


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Georgian architecture has found utterance. Above the 
second floor the hipped roof springs, pierced east and 
west by two graceful dormers and crowned by a well- 
turned balustrade that traverses nearly the whole dis- 
tance between the chimneys. The fan-light over the door 
has remarkably heavy fluted mullions and all the detail 
throughout the house, though highly wrought, is heavy 
as it was wont to be at the precise period when Mount 
Pleasant was erected. 

If one were asked, however, to sav what it is before 
all else that gives a peculiarly striking appearance to 
Mount Pleasant, the answer would straightway indicate 
the two flanking outbuildings, set thirty or forty feet 
distant from the northeast and southeast corners of the 
house. Though designed for servants' quarters and 
various domestic offices, these two-storey hipped-roof 
buildings are made of the same material and finished with 
the same care as the rest of the house. Without them 
Mount Pleasant would be only an unusually handsome 
Georgian country house; with them it at once takes on 
the manorial port of one of the old Virginia mansions. 
Beyond the circle before the house, where grows a mighty 
spreading sycamore, and at some distance from either side 
of the road, are two barns. The grouping is impressive 
and eloquent of the state maintained by the Colonial oc- 
cupants of this truly noble seat. 

The history of Mount Pleasant is not less engaging 
than its aspect. Captain Macpherson is one of the most 
picturesque personages to be met with in the picturesque 
pages of Colonial annals. Sprung from the JNIacpher- 
sons of Clunie in Scotland, he left his native country 



and followed the sea, coming out to America at what time 
is not exactly known. lie first came into prominent no- 
tice in Philadelphia, however, in 1757, "when he took 
command of the privateer Britannia. Privateering, or 
licensed piracy, to give it its unvarnished title, was apt 
to land them that practised it in all manner of troubles. 
Captain iSIacpherson "was no exception and met with his 
full tale of thrilling deeds and bloody fights, in the per- 
formance of which he lost an arm. After numerous en- 
gagements "with the Spanish and French, from whom he 
made not a few^ brilliant and profitable captures, he suc- 
ceeded in amassing a goodly fortune and came back to 
rest from his seafaring, a rich man for those days. 

With a part of the spoils of his privateering he built 
Clunie as he at first named his estate after the seat of 
his clan. The name Clunie he subsequently changed, 
however, to Mount Pleasant, the style it still bears. Here 
he lived in a manner becoming a man of his substance, 
exercising a hospitality that won the commendation of 
John Adams, who never failed to chronicle the good 
things he had to eat and drink. A man of intense ac- 
tivity, INIacpherson busied himself by inventing various 
contrivances, one of which was a device for moving brick 
or stone houses bodily — a piece of mechanism that worked 

Another fruit of his ingenuity was an " elegant cot 
which bids defiance to everything but Omnipotence." The 
occupant, according to the captain's assertion, was w^ar- 
ranted immunity from flies, mosquitoes or any other en- 
tomological irritant. In his later years he gave lectures 
on astronomy, published pa])ers on moral philosophy and 




issued the first city directory (1785) wherein he took oc- 
casion to express his personal pique at those that proved 
uncommunicative to his canvassing queries. Under the 
" I's " we find " I won't tell you," or " I don't care! Put 
down what you please," and so on with the numbers of 
the houses, while under the " C's " there is a whole regi- 
ment of " Cross women " dotted about the city so that we 
might fancy Philadelphia a very unsafe place to live in. 

Unfortunate in some of his financial affairs and wearv- 
ing of the seclusion of Mount Pleasant, as well as long- 
ing again for the smell of the sea, this gallant but eccen- 
tric gentleman, at the outbreak of the Revolution, applied 
to the Marine Commission of the Continental Congress 
for the chief command of the navy, a position for which 
his past achievements bespoke favourable consideration. 
Despite his importunities to gain his point, however, the 
honour was given to another. 

After Macpherson left Mount Pleasant he leased it 
to Don Juan de Merailles, the Spanish ambassador, and 
finally, in the spring of 1779, sold the estate to General 
Benedict Arnold, who gave it as a marriage gift to his 
bride, Peggy Shippen. Here they lived much of the 
time for more than a year after their marriage and here 
they gave some of those splendid entertainments that in- 
creased the cavilling and carping of the general's enemies 
and creditors when his personal fortunes were sinking into 
hopeless embarrassment. 

Despite Judge Peters's deep-seated dislike and distrust 
and his accusation that Arnold embezzled the money with 
which he bought Mount Pleasant, justice demands that 



we examine his case fairly. In the first place, the posi- 
tion in whit'li lie was placed as military administrator, after 
the British evacuated Philadelphia, required the exercise 
of the utmost patience and tact in order to avoid clashes. 
Neither of these qualities did Arnold possess. The city 
was a hothed of bickering and contention and he was not 
fitted by temperament to handle the situation. 

He was nagged at, hectored and badgered almost be- 
yond endurance by meddlesome people who must needs 
interfere even in his love affairs. His repeated requests 
for money long overdue him from Congress were unavail- 
ing. When he set out to see Washington about resigning 
his commission and settling on an estate in Western New 
York, no sooner was his back turned than General Joseph 
Reed, who seems to have pursued him with the \^ndictive 
malevolence of a peevish dyspeptic, brought a tale of 
charges against Iiim that could not be substantiated in 
the trial before a committee of Congress, except in two 
trifling matters. General Reed then moved for a new ex- 
amination and the matter was referred to another Con- 
gressional committee which dodged the responsibility and 
suggested a court martial. The sitting of the court mar- 
tial was deferred again and again at the request of his 
accusers that they might collect evidence. Finally it was 
held and exonerated him, but as a sop to his influential 
enemies it suggested a reprimand from Washington for 
two very insignificant matters, the utmost that could be 
proved. Washington's reprimand was practically a let- 
ter of recommendation. 

Nothing can ever palliate his unfaithfulness to Wash- 


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ington and his gigantic treachery in asking an important 
command that he might betray it, but historic justice com- 
pels us to " give the devil his due " and admit that he had 
much provocation for the discontent and resentment that 
he allowed to lead him at last to the blackness of villainy. 

After Arnold's attainder and the confiscation of his 
property, Mount Pleasant was leased to Baron Steuben, 
but it is doubtful whether he ever lived there, as his duties 
took him to the South at that very time, and when he 
returned thence the estate had another tenant. Passing 
through several hands, the property eventually came to 
General Jonathan Williams, of Boston, the Revolutionary 
worthy, who remained there and his family after him 
till the middle of the nineteenth century, shortly after 
which period Mount Pleasant and all the surrounding es- 
tates were acquired by the city and made a part of Fair- 
mount Park. 

Knowing thus a little of its historj^ the interior of 
the house, where personal memories seem to cling more 
persistently, can be better appreciated. A spacious hall- 
way as wide as a room runs through the house from east 
to west. In summer, if the doors at the ends are open, 
delightful prospects open up in either direction. The 
detail of classic ornament on cornice, pilaster, and door- 
trims is wonderfully rich and remarkably well preserved. 
To the north of the hall is the great drawing-room run- 
ning the full depth of the building, with windows look- 
ing both east and west. In the middle of the north side 
is a full-throated fireplace above which is an elaborately 
wrought overmantel, in whose central panel one instinc- 



tively feels that a canvas from the brush of Gainsborough 
or Kneller ought to hang. The door-frames, with their 
heavily moulded pediments, are exceptional. In fact all 
the woodwork both downstairs and up is richer in elabora- 
tion of detail than is usual in our Colonial Georgian. 
East of the dining-room is an ell extension from the hall 
and there a wide, easy staircase with a balustrade of grace- 
fully turned spindles ascends to the second floor. 

From the moment you cross the threshold, fancy peo- 
ples the rooms with a shadowy throng of those that once 
dwelt there or came beneath the hospitable roof when 
some festive occasion drew them from the city or the 
neighbouring seats. There stands the old captain in a 
cocked hat, his armless sleeve hanging limp at his side; 
here a courtly personage in satin breeches, velvet coat, 
and powdered periwig treads a measure with a dame ar- 
rayed in flowered brocade, wiio nods the plumes of her 
turban coquettishly at her partner in the minuet; there 
goes the gallant Spanish Don in a resplendent uniform 
and close behind him follows a martial figure in whose 
dour comeliness can be recognised the betrayer of his 
country's trust. All these and many more, not forgetting 
the ebony-faced and liveried lackeys, discover their pres- 
ence to our fleeting glimpses and only disappear entirely 
when we look directly at them to be assured of their 
reality. They all form a part of this old house, intangible 
and elusive, to be sure, but none the less real. 

These personal memories inwoven "svith material fabric, 
like all-permeating ether, are the very soul of the charm 
we feel in old buildings. At Mount Pleasant, how- 

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ever, Arnold is more than a mere evanescent memory, so 
former occupants aver. They swear they have seen him 
glowering malignly at them and have distinctly heard 
his heavy tread resounding in the halls. 

It is gratifying to say that Mount Pleasant has fallen 
into good hands. The city has entrusted the property 
to an automobile club, " La Moviganta Klubo," whose 
members and officers have spent liberally for intelligent 
restorations and repairs. A competent custodian is in 
charge and it is safe to say that this historic house will 
always be a cherished object of judicious care. 




RMISTON, on the verge of a deep 
glen that separates it from Laurel 
Hill, is a square rough-cast building 
of two storeys and a hipped roof, 
substantial and comfortable but with- 
out much architectural pretension. 
Its principal charm is its site over- 
looking the river far below. There are broad porches on 
both the land and river fronts, and in the davs when its 
condition was properly kept up, it must have been a de- 
lightful place to pass the summer months. 

Towards the end of the Colonial period it was the 
home of Joseph Galloway, an eminent lawyer and one 
of the most distinguished Loyalists. He w^as born at 
West River in ^laryland, in 1731, but came to Philadel- 
phia at an early age. In 1748 he was elected a member 
of the Colony in Schuylkill. While still a young man 
he attained great distinction in the law and was held an 
authority in all matters touching real estate. He was the 
intimate friend of Benjamin Franklin and when the lat- 
ter went to England in 1764 he placed his valuable papers 
and letter books in Galloway's hands for safekeeping. 
In 1757 he was elected to the Assembly, and from 1766 
to 1774 was speaker of that body, being usually elected 
by unanimous vote. In 175.3 he married Grace Growdon, 
the daughter of Laurence Growdon, of Trevose. 

After serving in the Congress of 1775 he withdrew 
from ])olitics. Doctor Franklin then sought to induce him 



to espouse the cause of independence but he could not con- 
scientiously do so, and in December, 1776, joined General 
Howe and accompanied the British army. During the 
British occupation of Philadelphia, at the request of 
General Howe, he assumed the duties of Superintendent- 
General of Police and Superintendent of the Port, being 
assisted by his friend and neighbour, Samuel Shoemaker. 

Because of his outspokenness and unhesitating action in 
support of the King, his name has been loaded with oblo- 
quy, which only in recent years has somewhat disappeared 
as people have begun to realise that the Loyalists were en- 
titled to their opinions as well as the Whigs and as much 
privileged to act upon their convictions in what was, after 
all, only a very violent political struggle between English- 
men as those who differed from them, without being held 
up to the execration of all future generations. 

In speaking of the Philadelphia Loyalists of whom 
there were many, Thomas Allen Glenn says: 

• family traditions of loyalty to the Crown were not to be lightly 
thrown aside. The position of the Loyalists of Philadelphia has 
never, perhaps, been properly presented. They were, as a class, 
the best people in the Province and the descendants of those 
settlers who, by hard work and unceasing effort had brought 
Philadelphia to be the chief citj' of Great Britain's American 
Colonies. They were, most of them, people of wealth, education, 
culture and refinement. Many, like the Rawles, were descended 
from the best of those who, in Penn's time, had planted the 
Province. Belonging to families that for generations, despite 
persecution, at times, for religious belief, had continued unswerv- 
ingly loyal to their King, they hesitated now to cut themselves loose 
from an authority which they had so long and faithfully obeyed, 



and which, taken all in all, had treated them well. They had, 
indeed, waxed rich and prosperous under the rule of King George 
and liis predecessors, and the great principles of liberty and self- 
government were to such people but shadowy phantoms of a 
dream. Not a single instant did they believe that the Conti- 
nental army would ultimately conquer, or that the Continental 
Congress would achieve aught save ruin to its members. The Loyal- 
ists, or " Tories," as their enemies called them, had property at 
stake which in money value far exceeded that of those engaged in 
the struggle for independence, and they could not bring, as they 
thought, irretrievable ruin upon their families, their kindred and 
themselves. It was not, with some of them, that they were Friends, 
or Quakers, for many of that belief either entered the Continental 
Army or else, because of religious scruples, declined to take part on 
either side, but they felt that in turning their backs on Washington 
and the cause he represented they were doing loyal service to their 
King and country. Had the American Revolution failed, they would 
have been praised instead of scorned, applauded instead of hissed. 

After the British evacuated Philadelphia, Galloway 
was attainted of high treason and his estates adjudged con- 
fiscate. Mrs. Galloway in order to protect her property re- 
mained at Ormiston until she was forcibly ejected by the 
commissioners in charge of confiscated estates. In this con- 
nexion the great Charles Wilson Peale does not appear in 
an amiable light. He was one of the commissioners and he 
it was who ran jNIrs. Galloway out by the shoulders, forcing 
her from her home and into Benedict Arnold's coach — he 
was then a near neighbour and had not yet fallen into dis- 
grace — which was waiting at the door to convey her away. 

Ormiston along with all the neighbouring seats is now 
a part of the park property, and is used by the family 
of one of the park employees. 



ONSPICUOUS among the seats 
that line the east bank of the Schuyl- 
kill is Laurel Hill. Separated from 
Ormiston by a deep-wooded combe 
and standing on a high bluff over- 
looking the river, it commands an 
unexcelled view up and down the 
banks of that stream, which for natural beauty has few 
peers and for the social distinction of the dwellers 
along ifs shores had not its equal in the Colonies. In 
Colonial times and for long afterwards, until the 
land was taken for park purposes, within the compass 
of a few miles, beside its waters were to be found more 
plantations belonging to folk of quality and substance 
than in any like neighbourhood. Great distances sepa- 
rated many of the Hudson manors, and on the James 
a like state of comparative isolation was not uncommon. 
The Schuylkill, on the contrary, combined virgin loveli- 
ness of scenery with an unsurpassed opportunity for easy 
and frequent intercourse with the most agreeable of 
neighbours as well as convenient proximity to the city. 

The house at Laurel Hill — the name, by the way, is 
derived from the luxuriant growth of laurel for which the 
bluffs along the river were once noted — though not as 
large as some others nearby, is a striking sample of 
Georgian architecture, two storeys in height with hipped 
roof. The walls are of brick painted yellow and all the 
woodwork is white. The main entrance, on the eastern 



or land front, is through a spacious classic doorway with 
flankini^ pilasters and a i^ediment above. A pediment 
likewise si)rings from the cornice in a line with the door- 
way pediment and this repetition of the motive imparts 
a dignified emphasis to the facade. A transverse wing 
A\ ith octagon ends at the northern side of the house is 
characteristic of a mimber of coimtr\^seats erected about 
the same period. This device relieves the angularity of 
the exterior and gives an opportunity to make an apart- 
ment of notable elegance within. 

Entering the door, one steps at once into a long gal- 
lery extending across the front of the house. At one end 
is a small room containing a square staircase, while at the 
other is a door opening into the great drawing-room, a 
chamber of truly princely dimensions with octagon ends. 
A handsome fireplace adorns the side opposite the en- 
trance and, over against it, balancing the door from the 
gallery is a door into the dining-room. The interior wood- 
work of Laurel Hill is admirably wrought and in good 

Joseph Shute, who owned large tracts of land close 
by, built Laurel Hill about 1748. In 1760 Francis 
Rawle bought the estate for his summer residence and it 
was during the occupancy of the Rawle family that the 
place began to figure on the stage of history. Francis 
Kawle, born in Philadelphia in 1729, was an only child 
and inherited an ample fortune from his parents. As a 
young man he made the " Grand Tour " of Europe as a 
})art of liis education and, after travelling extensively, re- 
turned to Ills native city. He Avas a broadly educated, 
cultured gentleman of wide interests. In 1756, shortly 


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Built by John Penn, 1785 


I?iiill hy .los.'pli Sliiil.-, c. ^7r,•i 


after his homecoming, he married Rebecca, daughter of 
Edward Warner, a wealthy and prominent citizen. 

At Laurel Hill they had as neighbours on either bank 
of the river the Whartons, JNIifflins, Fishers, Simses, 
Swifts, Galloways, Penns, Peterses, Warners, and many 
more well-known families. Unfortunately Francis Rawle 
did not live long to enjoj^ the pleasures of his plantation. 
In 1761, he was mortally wounded by the accidental dis- 
charge of a fowling-piece while shooting near the Dela- 
ware and died, leaving a wife and three small children, to 
wit, Anna; who later became Mrs. Clifford ; William, and 
Margaret, who in time married Isaac Wharton. B}" his 
will he left all his property to his widow, including Laurel 
Hill, and there during the summer months they lived. 

Mrs. Rawle, in 1767, married Samuel Shoemaker, him- 
self a widower with children and formerly the intimate 
friend of her first husband. Thereafter the united Rawle 
and Shoemaker families divided their time in summer 
between Laurel Hill and Mr. Shoemaker's own estate in 
Germantown. Mr. Shoemaker was an accomplished, es- 
timable and much respected gentleman of large means. 
He held manj^ important public posts in Philadelphia 
under the Royal and Proprietary govermnents, and from 
1755 to 1776 was continually in office, serving at one time 
or another as councilman, alderman, assemblyman, city 
treasurer, mayor, judge of the County Courts and jus- 
tice of the peace. 

When the War for Independence broke out he, like 
many other conscientious and worthy people, remained 
staunchly loyal to the government under which he had so 
long lived and held office, and when Philadelphia was oc- 



cupied })y His Majesty's forces during the fall, winter, 
and spring of 1777-1778, at the request of Sir William 
Howe, he assumed charge of the city's civil affairs along 
with his friend and neighbour, Joseph Galloway. In 
consequence of their attitude and action, the State Legis- 
lature, tlien sitting at Lancaster, declared him and other 
prominent citizens guilty of high treason and all their 
property forfeited to the State unless they surrendered 
themselves by the twentieth day of April following. This 
Shoemaker did not do and, with his stepson, William 
Rawle, left for New York, in June, a few days before the 
British forces evacuated Philadelphia. 

Directly the Revolutionary authorities returned to 
the city, they directed strenuous measures of confiscation 
against the Loyalists and Mr. Shoemaker's property was 
among the first to claim their notice. The Act of At- 
tainder provided that after twelve months the real estate 
of the attainted persons should be sold and that in the 
meanwhile the president or the vice-president and Su- 
preme Executive Council might rent out the said estates 
for a time not exceeding two years, paying the taxes and 
other expenses and managing them until they should be 
sold in the manner thereinafter directed. In their excess 
of vindictive zeal the agents of the State seized Laurel 
Hill, disregarding the fact that it did not belong to Mr. 
Shoemaker, but to his wife, and did not therefore come 
within their purview, and allowed the President of the 
State, General Joseph Reed, to occupy the premises. 

The diaries kept and exchanged by the separated mem- 
bers of the Rawle and Shoemaker families during this 
period throw much interesting light upon what was going 



on here and in New York, and make it quite plain that 
the lot of the Loj^alist families and sympathisers who re- 
mained in Philadelphia was not one of unalloyed bliss. 
A chronicle of the annoyances and indignities to which 
they were subjected by the authorities and the rowdyism 
they suffered at the hands of the baser sort would fill a 
volume. Several extracts from Anna Rawle's diary which 
she wrote for the information of her mother, then in New 
York, in the latter part of October, 1781, when tidings of 
Cornwallis's'surrender at Yorktown had reached Philadel- 
phia and were received with acclamations of joy, show the 
plight of quiet and inoffensive neutrals and Loyalists be- 
cause they did not choose to illuminate their houses in 
honour of an event they honestly regarded as a disaster. 

October 25. — Fifth Day. — I suppose, dear Mammy, thee would 
not have imagined this house to be illuminated last night, but 
it was. A mob surrounded it, broke the shutters and the glass 
of the windows, and were coming in, none but forlorn women 
here. We for a time listened for their attacks in fear and 
trembling till, finding them grow more loud and violent, not know- 
ing what to do, we ran into the yard. Warm Whigs of one side, 
and Hartley's of the other (who were treated even worse than 
we), rendered it impossible for us to escape that way. We had 
not been there many minutes before we were drove back by the 
sight of two men climbing the fence. We thought the mob were 
coming in thro' there, but it proved to be Cobum and Bob 
Shewell, who called to us not to be frightened, and fixed lights 
up at the windows, which pacified the mob, and after three huzzas 
they moved off. A number of men came in aftenvards to see us. 
French and J. B. nailed boards up at the broken pannels, or 
it would not have been safe to have gone to bed. Cobum and 
Shewell were really very kind ; had it not been for them I really 
believe the house would have been pulled down. Even the firm 
9 12!) 


LTncIc Fisher was obliged to submit to have his windows illumi- 
nated, for tlii-y liad })ic-kaxes and iron bars with which they liad 
done considerable injury to his house. In short it was the most 
alarming scene I ever remember. For two hours we had the dis- 
agreeable noise of stones banging about, glass crashing, and the 
tumultuous voices of a large body of men, as they were a long 
time at the different houses in the neighbourhood. At last they 
were victorious, and it was one general illumination throughout 
the town. As we had not the pleasure of seeing any of the 
gentlemen in the house, nor the furniture cut up, and goods 
stolen, nor been beat, nor pistols pointed at our breasts, we may 
count our sufferings slight compared to many others. Mr. Gibbs 
was obliged to make his escape over a fence, and while his wife 
was endeavouring to shield him from the rage of one of the 
men, she received a violent bruise in the breast, and a blow in the 
face which made her nose bleed. Ben. Shoemaker was here this 
morning; tho' exceedingly threatened he says he came off with 
the loss of four panes of glass. Some Whig friends put candles 
in the windows which made his peace with the mob, and they re- 
tired. John Drinker has lost half the goods out of his shop and 
been beat by them; in short the sufferings of those they pleased 
to style Tories would fill a volume and shake the credulity of 
those who were not here on that memorable night, and to-day 
Philadelphia makes an uncommon appearance, which ought to 
cover the Whigs with eternal confusion. ... J. Head has 
nothing left whole in his parlour. Uncle Penington lost a good 
deal of window glass. . . . The Drinkers and Wains make heavy 
complaints of the Carolinians in their neighbourhood. Wains' 
pickles were thrown about the streets and barrells of sugar stolen. 

Strange as it may now seem, the ruffianly behaviour 
of this rabble crew appears to have been condoned, and 
even to some extent concurred in, by those that would not 



naturally be expected to countenance such doings. 
Highly respectable people among the Whigs told Mrs. 
Galloway and others, who had sustained much loss through 
the animosity of the mob, that they were " sorry for her 
furniture but not for her windows " — a rather peculiar 
and inconsistent distinction to draw. Though brimful 
of partisan bias and hot prejudice, Miss Rawle's account 
of the activities of several of the Whig ladies of the city 
in behalf of the army a little prior to this, is too amusing, 
as seen by Loyalist eyes, to omit: 

But of all absurdities the ladies going about for money ex- 
ceeded everything; they were so extremely importunate that peo- 
ple were obliged to give them something to get rid of them. Mrs. 
Beech [Bache] and the set with her, came to our door the morn- 
ing after thee went, and turned back again. The reason she gave 
to a person who told me was that she did not chuse to face Mrs. 
S. or her daughters. 

H[annah] Thompson, Mrs. [Robert] Morris, Mrs. [James] 
Wilson, and a number of very genteel women, paraded about 
streets in this manner, some carrying ink stands, nor did they 
let the meanest ale house escape. The gentlemen also were hon- 
oured with their visits. Bob Wharton declares he was never so 
teased in his life. They reminded him of the extreme rudeness 
of refusing anything to the fair, but he was inexorable and 
pleaded want of money, and the heavy taxes, so at length they 
left him, after threatening to hand his name down to posterity 
with infamy. 

In February, 1782, Mr. Shoemaker's life-interest in 
his wife's estate at Laurel Hill was sold by the State 
agents to Major James Parr, an extensive investor in 
confiscated lands. Parr almost immediately thereafter 
leased the place to the French minister, the Chevalier de 



la Luzerne, who will ever remain famous for the magnifi- 
cent celebration he gave at his towTi house in honour of 
the birthday of the Dauphin. As he w^as so lavish in 
his entertainment, we may \vell believe that Laurel Hill 
during his occupancy was the scene of much social gaiety. 
It w^as certainly the scene of much good dining. The 
chevalier, of course, had his French cook and the French 
cook, to be sure, had his truffle-dog and the truffle-dog, 
forsooth, was fain to follow the occupation for which he 
had been bred. That sagacious animal, to his everlast- 
ing credit be it said, did what no botanist had ever done 
before or has ever succeeded in doing since. He dug for 
truffles on the lawn of Laurel Hill and found theml 
Could we now secure others of his breed we might add 
a new article to our native food supply. 

After the peace, when the zeal against the Loyalists 
had in some measure abated, the authorities view^ed the 
matter more calmly and saw that the title was still vested 
in Mrs. Shoemaker. Pursuant to some negotiations with 
JMajor Parr and his tenant, the Chevalier de la Luzerne, 
the estate was restored to its rightful owners, who re- 
turned after an absence of five years. In 1828, William 
llawle, as trustee under his mother's will, sold Laurel 
Hill to Doctor Philip Syng Physick, reference to whom 
is made elsewhere, and from him the estate passed to his 
descendants, the Randolphs, who retained it till the city 
bought it for a part of Fairmount Park in 18(39. After 
being let out for divers uses by the park commissioners 
the house was at last put in the care of the Colonial Dames 
of America, who now maintain it in good order and there 
hold stated meetings. 





900DF0RD is situated in the East 
Park at York and Thirty-third 
Streets near the Dauphin Street sta- 
tion of the Fairmount Park Elec- 
tric Railway. The fine old door- 
way is reached by six soapstone 
steps and opens into a large hall 
with an entrance at once into front rooms on either 
side. Beyond these doors are square columns against 
the walls of the hall with crosspiece of detail work, 
but no stairway appears. This ascends from a large hall 
in the centre of the house reached by a door in the side. 
The stairway and halls are spacious and the rooms large, 
each with a fireplace with ornamental iron back and 
square bricks for hearth. In the front south room the 
tiles surrounding the fireplace are blue and represent 
Elizabethan knights and ladies. The cornices in the 
rooms are rounding, the boards of the floors an inch and 
a half thick and dowelled together. The doors have brass 
hanging loops instead of knobs and the woodwork, includ- 
ing mantels and wainscot, is in fine condition. 

The ground upon which it stands was granted by 
William Penn, February 16, 1693, to Maiy Rotchford, 
who deeded the tract of two hundred acres to Thomas 
Shute in the same year. At his death in 1754 it was sold 
to Abel James, a son-in-law of Thomas Chalkley and one 
of the consignees of the tea in the Polly which was sent 



back to Knglaiul. He sold it to Joseph Shute, son of 
Thomas, in 1756, and immediately afterward it was sold 
at sheriff's sale, twelve acres going to William Coleman, 
who built the house. He was a friend of Franklin, mem- 
ber of the " Junto," a scholar, and an eminent jurist. 
Franklin says of him: 

And Williiini Coleman, then a merchant's clerk, about my 
age, who had the coolest, clearest head, the best heart, and the 
exactest morals of almost any man I ever met with. He became 
afterwards a merchant of great note, and one of our provincial 
judges. Our friendship continued without interruption to his 
death, upwards of forty years. 

This in describing the members of the " Junto " which 
met on Friday evenings and w^as for mutual improvement. 
Every member must produce in his turn one or more 
queries on any point of morals, politics, or natural phi- 
losophy, to be discussed by the company, and once in three 
months produce and read an essay of his own writing, 
on any subject he pleased. Franklin says it " was the 
best school of philosophy, morality and politics that then 
existed in the province." 

William Coleman was a member of Common Council 
in 1739, justice of the peace and judge of the Coimty 
Courts in 1751, and judge of the Supreme Court of 
Pennsylvania from 1759 until he died, aged sixty- four, in 
1769. The mansion on the " East side of the river 
Schuylkill and west side of Wessahykken Road " shows 
him fond of study and retirement. 

The executors of William Coleman sold the place to 
Alexander Barclay, Comptroller of His Majesty's Cus- 
toms at the Port of Philadelphia. He was the son of 


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David Barclay and the grandson of Robert Barclay of 
Ury, the famous Quaker theologian and " Apologist." 

He died in 1771 and the property then became the 
home of David Franks, the son of Jacob and Abigail 
Franks, and an eminent Jewish merchant. He was very 
prominent socially and a public-spirited man, the signer 
of the Non-Importation Resolutions in 1765, in which the 
signers agreed " not to have any goods shipped from Great 
Britain until after the repeal of the Stamp Act," a 
member of the Provincial Assembly in 1748, the register 
of wills, and a subscriber to the City Dancing Assembly. 
He married Margaret, daughter of Peter Evans, and has 
been thought to have deserted the faith of his fathers. 
This, however, is disproved by an affidavit he made before 
Judge Peters in 1792. The family was descended from 
Aaron Franks, the companion and friend of King George 
of Hanover, to whom he loaned the most valuable jewels 
in the crown at the coronation. The son Jacob came to 
New York about 1711, and his son David came to Phila- 
delphia soon after 1738, a niece having married Haym 
Salomon, whose money joined with Robert Morris's in 
financing the Revolution. 

David Franks was the agent of the Crown in Phila- 
delphia during the troublous times and was made com- 
missary of the British prisoners in the American lines 
until 1778, when he was detected in endeavouring to trans- 
mit a letter inimical to the American cause. His neigh- 
bour, General Benedict Arnold, in command of Philadel- 
phia and living in the JNIacpherson mansion nearby, ar- 
rested him and threw him into gaol. He was deprived 
of his commission as commissary and compelled to re- 



move to New York in 1780. His sister, Fila Franks, 
married Captain Oliver De Lancey, of New York, who, 
with Major Andre, painted the decorations for the 
" Mischianza " and served with credit in the Provincial 
troops during the llevolution. He was made a brigadier- 
general, and died in England in 1785. 

David Franks had four children — Abigail, who mar- 
ried Andrew Hamilton of the Woodlands, afterwards 
attorney-general of the State; Jacob, Mary or Polly, and 
Rebecca, who married Lieutenant-Colonel, afterward 
General, Sir Henry Johnson, defeated and captured by 
General Anthony Wayne at Stony Point. Rebecca 
Franks was the most striking figure in a notable galaxy 
of society lights. She was brilliant, witty and of a win- 
some presence, the most graceful among the graceful, the 
most beautiful among the beautiful. Born about 1760, 
well educated, at home in the classics, familiar with Mil- 
ton, Goldsmith, Swift, and others, she was of that group 
of aristocrats, who having derived their wealth and pros- 
perity from the favour of the Crown, sided with the Loy- 
alists and favoured law, order, and property as opposed 
to mobs and violence. She was a gifted writer and has 
left in her letters interesting accounts of the society of 
the day as well as a poem of some fifteen hundred lines 
written in the summer of 1779, which is a political satire 
full of unmeasured abuse of the leaders of the Revolu- 
tionary War. General Howe was in the habit of tying 
his horse in front of the house in which the Franks lived 
and going in to have a chat with the wit of the day. 

This sprightly person was naturally one of the belles 
of the celebrated " Mischianza " given May 18, 1778, by 



the British officers in honour of General Howe upon his 
departure. The word is an Italian one and signifies a 
medley. It was celebrated upon a scale of magnificence 
rarely equalled in those days and its description reads 
like a page from Ivanhoe, forcibly calling to mind the 
days of chivalry. The guests embarked from Green 
Street wharf and proceeded in a river pageant to what 
is now Washington Avenue, where they landed and ad- 
vanced to Joseph Wharton's place, Walnut Grove, sit- 
uated at about what is now Fifth Street and Washington 
Avenue. After this there was a tournament in which 
England's bravest soldiers appeared in honour of Phila- 
delphia's fairest women, being divided into six Knights 
of the Blended Rose and six Knights of the Burning 
Mountain, each wearing the colours of his particular prin- 
cess. Lord Cathcart led the former, appearing in honour 
of Miss Auchmuty, the only English maiden present and 
the betrothed of Captain Montresor, chief engineer. The 
Knights of the Burning Mountain were led by Captain 
Watson, who appeared for Miss Franks. 

She was dressed in a white silk gown, trimmed with 
blue and white sash edged with black. It was a polo- 
naise dress, which formed a flowing robe and was open 
in front to the waist. The sash, six inches wide, was 
filled with spangles, also the veil which was edged with 
silver lace. The headdress was towering, in the fashion 
of the time, and filled with a profusion of pearls. ISIajor 
Andre planned most of the entertainment and has left a 
detailed account of it as well as drawings of the costumes. 
He painted many of the decorations and Captain ]Mon- 
tresor of the engineers planned the fireworks. After 



the tourney there was a supper with royalist toasts fol- 
lowed hy dancing until four o'clock, and all in the midst 
of a l)k)()(ly war and within a few miles of the enemy! 

After the evacuation of the city by the British army, 
Lieutenant Jack Stewart of JNIaryland, calling upon Miss 
Franks in a scarlet coat, remarked, " I have adopted 
your colours, my princess, the better to secure a kind re- 
ception; deign to smile on a true knight." The beauty 
did not reply, but addressing some friends in the room ex- 
claimed, " How the ass glories in the lion's skin." A 
commotion arising in the street at the time, they looked 
out and saw a figure in female attire with ragged skirts 
and bare feet, but with the exaggerated headdress of the 
Tory ladies. The unfortunate officer remarked that, " the 
lady was equipped altogether in the English fashion." 
" Not altogether. Colonel," replied Miss Franks, " for 
though the style of her head is British, her shoes and 
stockings are in the genuine Continental fashion." When 
the French Alliance was announced, the patriots wore 
cockades in its honour. Miss Franks tied one of these 
to her dog and bribed a servant to turn it into the ball- 
room where IVIrs. Washington w^as giving a reception 
to the French minister. It is to be hoped that having 
lost her manners she lost her dog as well. 

In a letter to her sister, Mrs. Hamilton, she wTites 
the most detailed and piquant account that w^e possess 
of New York social life during the Revolution. 

She thinks that it is in the powers of entertaining that 
New Yorkers are most deficient: 

Bye the bye, few ladies liere know how to entertain company 
in their ovm houses, unless they introduce the card table. . . . 



I will do our ladies — that is, the Philadelphians — the justice to 
say that they have more cleverness in the turn of an eye, than 
those of New York have in their whole composition. With what 
ease have I seen a Chew, an Oswald, an Allen, and a thousand 
others, entertain a large circle of both sexes, and the conversation 
without the aid of cards not flag or seem the least strained or 


She finally settled down in Bath, England, with her 
husband, and when General Winfield Scott visited her in 
1816 she had become, from bad health, prematurely old, 
a very near approach to a ghost, and was rolled about in 
an easy chair. Still maintaining some of her fire she ex- 
claimed to him, pointing to heaven with both hands, 
" Would to God I, too, had been a patriot." 

At a ball given by the English officers in New York, 
General Sir Henry Clinton requested the band to play 
" Britons Strike Home," whereupon Miss Franks ex- 
claimed, " The Commander-in-Chief has made a mistake, 
he meant to say ' Britons Go Home.' " 

His adherence to the British side caused the confisca- 
tion of David Franks's property and, November 22, 1780, 
Woodford went to Thomas Paschall, son of Stephen 
Paschall and a friend of Benjamin Franklin. William 
Lewis, a famous advocate, also lived in it and finally, in 
1793, it came into the Wharton family, Isaac Wharton 
being the purchaser. Isaac Wharton was born Septem- 
ber 15, 1745, the son of Joseph and Hannah Carpenter 
Wharton and the grandson of Thomas and Rachel 
Thomas Wharton. He was married to Margaret Rawie, 
daughter of Francis and Rebecca Warner Rawle. Isaac's 
father, Joseph Wharton, was the owner of Walnut Grove 



in Southwark where the " JNIischianza " was held in May, 
1778. At Isaac Wharton's death in 1778, the partition 
of the estate brought the seat to his son, Francis Rawle 
Wharton, who married Juliana Matilda, daughter of 
Isaac Gouverneur of New York. He w^as the last private 
owner of Woodford and it came to Fairmount Park in 
1868. It was occupied by Chief Engineers John C. 
Cresson and Russell Thayer and since May 16, 1887, has 
been used as a guardhouse. The two small lodge-houses 
on the place are still standing and in use. 



F all the multitudes that each year 
visit Fairmount Park and pass the 
door of Belmont INIansion, it is safe 
to say that hardly one in a thou- 
sand thinks of it as the former home 
of one of the most eminent men 
of the Colonial and Revolutionary 
periods. Here was born, here lived, and here died 
the Honourable Richard Peters, sometime judge of the 
United States District Court in Pennsylvania, Commis- 
sioner of War during the struggle for Independence, and 
the country's first Secretary of War, in deed, if not in 

So many changes have been wrought in the house and 
surroundings since Judge Peters's time, that the pictu- 
resque charm of its Colonial character is obscured. It 
has been turned into a restaurant and so altered and 
added to that it is not easy to discern what part of the 
present structure was, in its day, one of the handsomest 
seats in the neighbourhood. A third floor has been piled 
atop and wings and l)ack buildings have been built on 
to such an extent that the original fabric is almost smoth- 
ered. Examine closely, however, and you will find un- 
mistakable traces of age in parts of the walls. Then 
enter the distressingly ugly modern doorway and you 
will find yourself in a delightful room that was once the 
great hall of the house. The present furnishing of little 
ice-cream tables and flimsy chairs is sadly out of keeping 



witli the stately panelling and carving and the ornate 
plaster work of the ceiling — one of the most elaborate ex- 
amples of Colonial plaster work known — where viols and 
guitars, trumpets and shepherd's reeds are intermingled 
witli tlie arms and crest of the Peters family. In the dog- 
ears of the door-trims are carved dainty little rosettes, 
while the pediments above are finished with the infinite 
pains of the woodcarver's art. The embellishment of the 
overmantel matches the rest of the carved woodwork. If 
one has the courage to face further desecration to which 
this lordly old dwelling is subjected, he can pursue 
his investigations and find other rooms with gems of 
carving and staircases whose balustrades and spindles 
might grace a Georgian museum. 

Of all the houses in Fairmount Park, Belmont has 
suffered most at the hands of the vandal. Apart from its 
commanding site, whence an extensive panorama of the 
West Park, the Schuylkill River, and part of the city 
spreads out before the eye, and the beautiful interior 
Avoodwork and remarkable ceiling of ttie great hall, its 
chief attraction for us lies in the memory of the remark- 
able man who dwelt under its roof through eighty-four 
years of an eventful life passed in a most eventful period 
of our national history. 

Belmont, in the township of Blockley, as all that sec- 
tion immediately west of the Schuylkill was called, from 
Blockley in England whence came the Warner family 
who first owned this tract, was built in 1742 or 1743 
(proba])ly finished in the latter year) by William Peters, 
the father of the judge. William Peters, who was a 
younger brotlicr of Kichard Peters, sometime secretary 



of the Land Office, secretary of several Provincial gov- 
ernours, rector of Christ Church and subsequently, by 
order of the Proprietaries, Councillor of the Province 
came from England to Pennsylvania prior to 1739 and 
practised law in Chester County, which reached at that 
time to the borders of the city. He seems to have been 
induced to come out to the Colonies partly to assuage his 
grief at the death of his first wife, and partly by the fact 
that his elder brother was already here. In 1741 he mar- 
ried Mary Breintnall, a lady equally charming in character 
and person, the daughter of a prominent family. It was 
on the occasion of this marriage that he made his home 
at Belmont. 

Here Richard Peters first saw the light of day in 
June, 1744. He received his education in Philadelphia, 
and at the time when he entered upon the practice of law 
he was known as an excellent Latin and Greek scholar 
and was well versed in both French and German. His 
fluency in the latter tongue served him in good stead in 
his country practice which lay largely among the Ger- 
mans. Richard Peters was a keen wit and a most bril- 
liant as well as incessant conversationalist. It was his 
wont to follow the assizes or circuits of the courts in 
all the surrounding counties, and on these occasions he 
always relieved the tedium of the legal atmosphere by 
his humorous sallies. When the Pennsylvania delegation 
went to the conference with the Indians at Fort Stanwix, 
in New York State, Peters accompanied them and, dur- 
ing the negotiations, so insinuated himself into the good 
graces of the Indian chiefs that they proposed to adopt 
him into their tribe. Their offer was accepted and Peters 



was introduced to his adoptive relatives by the name 
" Te^ohtias," meaning " Paroquet," bestowed in alhision 
to his amusing talkativeness. 

\\'hen tile storm of the Revolution broke, though his 
associations with the Proprietary government might have 
been expected to attach him to the King's interests, he 
did not hesitate to espouse the defence of American rights 
and organise a company in the neigh})ourhood of his home, 
filling the post of captain. His military career, however, 
was of short duration, for his administrative and execu- 
tive abilities were so well known that he was soon sum- 
moned " from the camp to the cabinet," As Commissioner 
of War he faithfully and ably served the country in a 
most difficult and trying position and it is no exaggera- 
tion to say that, had it not been for his indomitable energ}'- 
and unceasing labours, Washington's forces would many 
a time have been far more sadly handicapped than they 
were for lack of provisions and ammunition, and it is 
not impossible that the event of the war might have been 

Some notion of the Continental Army's frequently 
grievous state as well as some notion of the tremendous 
burden Peters bore on his shoulders during all the anx- 
ious years of strife may be gained from Peters's o^v^l 
words taken from one of his letters. 

I was Commissioner of War in 1779. General Washington 
wrote to me that all his powder was wet and that he was 
entirely without lead or balls, so that, should the enemy approach, 
he must retreat. When I received this letter I was going to a 
^and gala at the Sj)anish Ambassador's who lived in Mr. Chew's 
fine liouse in south Third street. The spacious gardens were su- 



perbly decorated with variegated lamps, the edifice itself was a 
blaze of lights, the show was splendid, but my feelings were far 
from being in harmony with all this brilliancy. I met at this 
party my friend, Robert Morris, who soon discovered the state 
of my mind. " You are not yourself tonight, Peters, what is 
the matter.? " asked Morris. Notwithstanding my unlimited 
confidence in that great patriot, it was some time before I could 
prevail upon myself to disclose the cause of my depression, but 
at length I ventured to give him a hint of my inability to answer 
the pressing calls of the Commander-in-Chief. The army is with- 
out lead and I know not where to get an ounce to supply it; the 
General must retreat for want of ammunition. " Well, let him 
retreat," replied the high and liberal-minded Morris ; " but cheer 
up; there are in the Holker Privateer, just arrived, ninety tons 
of lead, one-half of which is mine and at your service, the resi- 
due you can get by applying to Blair McClenachan and Holker, 
both of whom are in the house with us." I accepted the offer 
of Mr. Morris. 

Peters then goes on to relate how he approached 
McClenachan and Holker, both of whom, however, de- 
murred because of the large sums already owing them. 
Thereupon Morris came forward, assumed the whole re- 
sponsibility, the lead was delivered and so the army for 
the nonce had a supply of bullets. 

Peters's assiduous labours as Commissioner of War 
were continued throughout the Revolution. He toiled un- 
ceasingly to keep the army furnished with necessary am- 
munition and supplies at a time " when wants were plenty 
and supplies lamentably scarce." After the surrender 
of Cornwallis, Mr. Peters resigned his post in the War 
Office, December, 1781, whereupon Congress resolved: 

10 145 


that Mr. IV'ter's letter of resignation be entered on the Journal 
and that he be informed that Congress are sensible of his merit 
and convinced of liis attachment to the cause of his country and 
return him their thanks for his long and faithful services in the 
War Department. 

Upon leaving the War Office ]Mr. Peters was elected 
a member of Congress and had his share in the business 
of ending the war and arranging the longed-for peace. 

Soon after the close of the war, in 1785, ^Ir. Peters 
visited England, having among other objects of his visit 
a commission of a semi-public nature that brought him 
into acquaintance with the primate and principal prelates 
of the Knglish Church — the securing of consent for the 
English bishops to consecrate to the Episcopate three 
American priests, Doctors White, JMoore, and Provoost. 
His mission, it is needless to say, was ultimately suc- 
cessful. After the conclusion of peace, jNIr. Peters was 
speaker of the State Assembly until President Wash- 
ington appointed him judge of the L^nited States Dis- 
trict Court of Pennsylvania, a position he held until the 
time of his death thirty-six years later. 

During Judge Peters's lifetime, Belmont was the scene 
of lavish and constant hospitality and while I'hiladelphia 
was the seat of Federal government the chief statesmen, 
diplomats, and foreign notables were frequent guests 
there. The judge dearly loved to surround himself ^vith 
his friends, and his political prominence, his intellectual 
brilliance, and above all his genial personality drew a large 
coterie about him. Washington and Lafayette were on 
terms of great intimacy with him and the former, " when- 
ever a morning of leisure permitted," was in the habit 



of driving to Belmont and there, free for a time from 
the cares of State, would enjoy his host's vivacious flow 
of conversation, walking for hours with him in the beau- 
tiful gardens between " clipped hedges of pyramids, obe- 
lisks and balls " of evergreen and spruce, or beneath the 
shade of ancient trees. So much for the more serious side 
of Richard Peters's career. 

Notwithstanding his high reputation as a patriot, 
statesman, and jurist, he is best remembered as a brilliant 
wit and many stories of his bon mots have been carefully 
treasured. His was the eminently happy faculty of al- 
ways being able to raise a wholesome, good-natured 
laugh without the least trace of ill-humour or sharpness. 
Despite his scintillating gaiety, his bursts were always 
well-timed and his manner and behaviour were never 
wanting in dignity and decorum. On one occasion the 
judge was attending a dinner of the Schuylkill Fishing 
Company and was seated beside the president, Governour 
Wharton. Toward the end of the dinner more wine was 
required and the Governour called a serving-man named 
John to fetch it. Said the judge, " If you want more 
wine, you should call for the demi-John." 

In the latter part of his life Judge Peters was deeply 
interested in real estate matters and tried to develope a 
suburban tract he owned. To advertise it he posted a 
plan of the locality on a signboard and carefully covered 
it with glass. When asked the reason for the glass cov- 
ering, he promptly responded, " Oh, if I leave it exposed, 
every hunter who comes along will riddle it with shot and 
then everybody will see through my plan." The project 
was not successful and one of his friends advised him to 



have it officially laid out. " All right," said Peters, " it's 
time to lay it out. It's been dead long enough." At 
another time, according to Samuel Breck, who chronicled 
a good many of the judge's jeucc d'esjmt, a very fat and 
a very slim man stood at the entrance of a door into which 
his honour wished to pass. He stopped for a moment for 
them to make way, but perceiving they were not inclined 
to move, and being lU'ged by the master of the house to 
come in, he pushed on between them, exclaiming, " Here 
I go then, through thick and thin." 

Judge Peters was one of the founders of the Phila- 
delphia Society for Promoting Agriculture, the first agri- 
cultural society in America. From the farm at Belmont 
came many model things. Dairying among other matters 
came in for a share of attention and Belmont butter 
found its way to market put up in one pound packages. 
Unfortunately for the judge, his one pound weight, ac- 
cording to a new assize of weights and measures, was too 
light, and the whole consignment was seized by the in- 
spector and confiscated for the benefit of the poor. The 
judge then sent his old weight to be examined and cor- 
rected by the standard, and when it was returned the let- 
ters " C. P. " (for Commonwealth of Pennsylvania) were 
stamped upon it. The servant who brought it back car- 
ried it at once to the judge, who was at dinner with a 
party of friends. Taking it he carefully inspected it and 
looking gravely at his wife, said, as he held it up for her 
to see, " My dear, they have at last found us out. Here 
is the old weight come back with C. P. stamped in it 
which can stand for nothing in the world ])ut Cheating 



Although the surroundings of Belmont were unusually 
beautiful, so that the French traveller, Chastellux, was 
quite warranted in his remark about the place being a 
" tasty little box in the most charming spot Nature could 
embellish," the fields often presented a shabby appear- 
ance, for the judge was so occupied with public affairs 
and also with agricultural experiments that he had little 
time to devote to the practical management of his farm- 
ing operations. One day an old German, who had often 
read the judge's agricultural reports, made a pilgrimage 
to Belmont. He found the gate without hinges, fences 
dilapidated, and the crops not equal to his own. When 
the judge came out to speak to him, the rustic bluntly ex- 
pressed his disappointment at the appearance of the place. 
" How can you expect me," said the judge, *' to attend to 
all these things when my time is so taken up in telling 
others how to farm?" The old German was disgusted 
and drove away without asking any more questions. 

Judge Peters was one of the courtliest of men and re- 
tained the ancient mode of dress long after others had 
abandoned it. To his dying day he wore knee-breeches 
and silver buckles on his shoes, always powdered his hair 
and dressed it in a queue. An old friend of the family, 
]Miss ^lolly Delaney, was wont to perform the service 
of queue dressing for him every morning. After his 
death in 1828 Belmont remained in possession of the fam- 
ily but played no prominent part in the social life of the 
period. It was sold to the city for incorporation in the 
park in 1867. 




f) UST beyond city line, about half a 
mile from Bala station, at the break 
of the hill that goes down to Pen- 
coyd Bridge over the Schuylkill, is 
Pencoyd, built in 1683, one of the 
earliest houses in the Welsh Barony, 
u Pencoyd means " head of the woods," 
and was so named bj^ the Colonist John Roberts, presum- 
ably either because the woods on the slope from the river 
ended there or else because the land was a -wooded 

The entire four walls of the old house, tw^o feet thick, 
are still standing though hidden in part by later addi- 
tions. The material of the structure is native grey field 
stone of varied sizes — some of them probably turned up 
in the course of clearing the fields — pointed with white 
mortar. In the rear of the house still remain marks of 
old mud plaster, and until fifty years ago there was a 
XJortion of the log cabin standing that doubtless served 
John Roberts as a temporary domicile while the house 
was a-building. 

John Roberts, of Llanengwan, in the parish of Lynn, 
near Bala, in Wales, came over in 1683, and before his 
departure received a grant from Penn of tw^elve hundred 
acres. He was one of the first settlers of INIerion Town- 
ship, wliich he named after INIerionethshire, the county 
of his origin in Wales, and his grant in the Welsh Tract 



early became a productive plantation. Not many years 
after his first occupation of the land, he wrote, *' What 
was then a howling wilderness is now become, by the 
grace of God, a peaceful and fruitful farm." John 
Roberts was one of the heads of Merion Meeting and is 
buried in the grounds of that Meeting House which was 
built in 1695. 

Pencoyd was typical of the plantations throughout 
the Welsh Barony which extended over a large part of 
what is now Montgomery County. Here, in a great 
stretch of wild rolling land that appealed to them be- 
cause of its resemblance to their dearly loved Cambrian 
Hills, the Welsh people settled near one another and 
chose to live quite apart and aloof from the Colonists 
of other nationalities. Even now, under a grey Novem- 
ber sky, when the freshening winds of autumn rustle the 
seared oak leaves, a wild Cymric spirit seems to sweep 
through the air calling back half-legendary memories. 
For a long time the Welsh settlers had their own courts, 
their own customs, their o\^^l churches and meetings, and 
jealously preserved the use of the Welsh tongue both 
in public and private but, as the years passed, intercourse 
with their non-Gaelic neighbours increased and they were 
ultimately assimilated by the more numerous element, 
contributing, however, one of the best and strongest 
strains to the State's population. 

Robert Roberts, whose pistols and powder-horn are 
still kept at Pencoyd, and Lieutenant-Colonel Algernon 
Roberts, both served with distinction in the American 
army during the Revolution ; the latter was a warm friend 



of his near neighbour, Judge Peters of Belmont, between 
whose place and Pencoyd there was much visiting back 
and forth. Since the date of the original grant Pencoj'd 
has never been sold nor deeded, but has always passed 
by will from owner to owner. At this time the ninth 
generation of Robertses is living in the house that the 
Colonist John builded in 1683. 



l^gfg^ HOMAS WYNNE, chirurgeon, 
came over in the Welcome with 
his friend William Penn. He was 
the son of Thomas Ap John 
Wynne of the parish of Yskeiviog, 
Flintshire, Wales, and lived at 

The Wynnes trace their ancestry to Ednowain Ben- 
dow, Lord of Tegaingl, a district of Flintshire, and chief 
of the fifteenth Noble Tribe of North Wales in 1079. 
Thomas was baptised July 20, 1627, and early in youth 
wished to be a physician. The loss of his father when 
he was eleven years old caused such financial stress in 
the family that he was compelled to forego this desire for 
a time and to learn the trade of a cooper. In 1655 he 
married Martha Buttall of Wrexham, by whom came all 
his children. She died in 1670, and he married Elizabeth 
Row^den, who died in 1676, and lastly, Elizabeth jNIaule, 
who survived him. At the first opportunity he sought 
out Richard Moore, of Salop, " a good Artist in Chyrur- 
gery," and Doctors Needham and Hollins, anatomists. 
He was one of the early converts to the Society of 
Friends and became an eminent minister, suffering im- 
prisonment at Denbigh for six years. In 1677 he pub- 
lished a pamphlet entitled: 

The Antiquity of the Quakers, proved out of the Scriptures 
of Truth. Published in Love to the Papists, Protestants, Presby- 



tcrinns, Iiulopendcnts and Anabaptists. With a Salutation of 
Pure Love to all the Tender-hearted Welshmen. But more es- 
pecially to Flintshire, Dcnbigshire, Caernarvonshire and Anglesea. 
By their Countryman and Friend Thomas Wynne. 

Besides the English part, this address contains two 
pages in Welsh. It was replied to by a Welshman named 
^^"illianl Jones, and in 1679 Thomas broke out again in 

An Anti-Christian Conspiracy Detected and Satan's Cham- 
pion Defeated. Being a Reply to an Envious and Scurrilous 
Libel, without any name to it, called work for a cooper, Being 
also a vindication of my Book entitled The Antiquity of the 
Quakers. From the base Insinuations, False Doctrine and False 
Charge therein contained against me, my Book and against God's 
People, called Quakers in general, by me Thomas AVynne. 

Thomas Wynne and John Ap John, for themselves 
and as trustees for others, purchased five thousand acres 
of the Welsh Barony from Penn and came over with him 
in 1682, Dr. Wynne finding ample practice for his pro- 
fession in the outbreak of smallpox which occurred on 
the Welcome. His house in Front above Chestnut 
Street was one of the first brick houses in Philadelphia, 
and Chestnut Street was originally called Wynne Street. 
In 1684, with the approval of his jNIonthly Meeting, he 
returned to England, probably with William Penn in the 
ketch Endeavour. Coming again to America he lived at 
Lewes, Delaware, where, in 1688, he was associate- justice 
of Sussex County. He had been its representative in 
the first Assembly held at Philadelphia January 12, 1683, 
and was chosen the first speaker, receiving the charter of 
the Colony from William Penn April 2, 1683. Friends 


> >, > 1 ) 5 

1 '' J J ) 5 

J 3 ; > 

> > > > 1 

I J ) J ) > > > 













appointed him as one to prepare an account of the order 
of the Society of Friends in the meetings for discipline 
in England and for government of meetings here and 
also one of a committee to select the site and to build the 
Bank Meeting House near Front and Arch Streets, 
erected in 1685. 

At about the centre of the five thousand acres pur- 
chased and alonff the line of what was afterward the old 
Lancaster Road, Wynnestay was built, the older part be- 
ing erected in 1689 as is inscribed on a wade joint of mortar 
in the gable end. The other end was built in 1700, and 
wliile it is doubtful whether Doctor Wjmne lived in 
the house it is known that his only son Jonathan lived 
there and it was probably erected for him. Doctor 
Wynne died in 1692 and the estate went to Jonathan 
and his wife, who was Sarah Greaves and whom he had 
married in 1694. 

The house is now located at Fifty-second and Wood- 
bine Avenue in the Thirty-fourth ward of Philadelphia, 
and the land of the Wynnes is now largely in Fairmount 
Park, in the George's Hill section, and where the centen- 
nial buildings of 1876 stood. The first house was a two- 
storey stone building with a single room on each floor and 
a pent roof above the first. The second part was a trifle 
higher than the first, but a new roof, which is the only 
change, has put all on a level. There is a new wing now, 
in the rear, built in conformity with the original and the 
fences surrounding it have given way to hedges. The 
nine Lombardy poplars, five running parallel to the 
south front of the house and four at a right angle, have 



Jonathan Wynne was succeeded at Wynnestay by 
his son Thomas, who married ^lary Warner in 1722. 
Their son Thomas, who married Margaret Coulton, was 
the next owner. At the outbreak of hostilities with 
England he was taken prisoner and remained in captiv- 
ity until 1781. His wife and children remained at 
AVynnestay and bravely resisted the harassing British 
soldiery. Thomas was a lieutenant in the " Flying 
Camp " under command of Colonel Lambert Cadwalader 
and was captured at Fort Washington on the Hudson. 

A skirmish occurred at the Black Horse Tavern, near 
Wynnestay, and during one of the excursions of a Brit- 
ish troop some of them attempted to steal all the eatables, 
but Margaret Coulton Wynne resisted them until a de- 
tachment of Continentals under Potter came up and drove 
them off, killing three who are buried in the lawn. Many 
bullets and cannon balls found in the grounds prove the 
troublous times that surrounded the little familv then. 
In 1782 Thomas was dead and his son Thomas took pos- 
session with his wife, who was Elizabeth Reese. He ran 
away to the army when fourteen, but returned after three 
months. After them came the son Samuel, who married 
Phoebe Sharp from Cumberland County, New Jersey, 
and then their son Joseph whose wife was Elizabeth N. 

The eighth generation and the last of the name to 
live in the house was the present Thomas Wynne, and 
from the heirs of Samuel Wynne the estate was sold, 
about 1872, to the Smedley family who now own it and 
preserve it in splendid condition. There is only about 



an acre of open ground surrounding the house and the 
present pretty suburb of Wynnefield has sprung up about 
it. Thomas Wynne still sits in the gallery of ^lerion 
Meeting, as his ancestors have done before him, and takes 
an active interest in the concerns of the Society of Friends. 
Descendants of Doctor Thomas Wynne are num- 
bered among the families of Cook, Wister, Cadwalader, 
and Roberts, and the family name has been made widely 
known by Doctor S. Weir aMitchell's novel, " Hugh 





X the year of grace 1682 Henry 
Lewis, a Welsh Quaker, established 
himself in Haverford Township, 
then Chester, now Delaware County, 
on the banks of Cobb's Creek near 
the city line and the present Old 
Haverford Road, and named his 
estate Maen-Cocli. He shortly built a substantial stone 
house that afterward became a part of Clifton Hall, 
as the estate was called by a subsequent owner and 
so styled until it received the title of the Grange in 1780. 
About seven miles from the old Court House at Second 
and Market Streets, this abode of Henry Lewis was then 
in the depths of the wilderness and even now after the 
lapse of more than two centuries it enjoys a measure of 
rural seclusion that is scarcely to be looked for in a place 
so near the city. 

Under a succession of o^\Tiers Maen-Coch, Clifton 
Hall, or the Grange, experienced many vicissitudes of ad- 
dition and embellishment until in late Colonial times it 
became one of the most justly celebrated seats in the 
vicinity of Philadelphia and so remained until a very few 
years ago. Now, shorn of its former honours, deserted, 
dilapidated, overgrown, with rank weeds profanely en- 
croaching on its once faultless walks and borders, and an 
unrestrained confusion of lawful growths jostling each 
other in unkempt array, the Grange yet maintains a cer- 



tain steadfast dignity of mien that, in its day of de- 
cadence, seems to bespeak a proud consciousness of its 
former high estate and a determination to preserve to 
the end an unruffled exterior, come what may, like a thing 
of truly gentle race enduring the bufFetings of the storms 
of misfortune. Despite the alterations made after the 
Civil War, alterations that destroyed its Georgian aspect, 
on account of which in part no illustrations are given, it 
is unquestionably one of the great houses of the country, 
where from earliest Colonial times lavish hospitality was 
wont to be dispensed and the most honourable and notable 
men of their several generations were entertained. 

The aforesaid Henry Lewis, being one of the most 
staid and straight-laced members of the Society of Friends, 
carefullv eschewed all outward display and contented 
himself with an unpretentious dwelling of modest dimen- 
sions. He, and his son Henry after him, lived for many 
years in what is now the rear portion of the house. About 
the middle of the eighteenth century we find the estate 
in the possession of a Captain John Wilcox, who en- 
larged the house, adding all or nearly all of the front 
part, and changed the name to Clifton Hall. Tradition 
has it that Captain Wilcox surrounded his broad lands 
with a ditch of some depth which he caused to be digged 
by his negro slaves of whom he had a considerable num- 
ber. It is said that he devised this scheme for keeping 
tliem employed and out of mischief when there was noth- 
ing else to be done. In the middle of the last century, 
traces of this ditch were still discernible. 

About 1760 Captain Charles Cruickshank, a Scotch 
gentleman of wealth, came to America and in 1761 pur- 



chased Clifton Hall from Captain Wilcox. He indulged 
in various enlargements and modifications of the mansion, 
though in exactly what respects it is scarcely possible to 
say. He was a person of cultivated tastes and ap- 
pears to have had a strong bent for gardening, for it was 
at this period that the terraced walks were cut, the green- 
houses and hothouses established and the " natural 
beauties of the place . . . developed by the appliances 
of art." The landscape gardening begun by Captain 
Cruickshank and continued by succeeding owners has 
given the Grange a position in this respect unexcelled 
in all the surrounding country. Captain Cruickshank 
also added to the acres of Clifton Hall. 

On December 8, 1768, John Ross, another Scotch- 
man afterward extensively engaged in Philadelphia as 
an East India merchant and shipowner, married Clemen- 
tina, the daughter of Captain Cruickshank, the wedding 
taking place at the Grange, or Clifton Hall as it was 
then called. During and after the Revolutionary War, 
John Ross was a prominent figure in the counsels of the 
infant nation and in the conduct of affairs. His devo- 
tion to the American cause cost him dear and very nearly 
ruined him, for in ready response to an order from Con- 
gress's Committee of Commerce in May, 1776, " to pro- 
cure cloths [sic], arms and powder for the use of the 
army," he spent far more than the trifling and inadequate 
sum the commissioners were then able to put at his dis- 
posal. His outlay for the army on the guarantee of his 
personal responsibility amounted to twenty thousand 
pounds. This advance he could never fully recover and 
for a considerable time he was in sore straits. Eventually, 



however, fortune shone upon him and his resources in- 
creased so that in 1783, when Captain Cruickshank re- 
turned to Scotland, he was able to buy the Grange, so 
rechristened in 1780 in honour of the Marquis de 
Lafayette, whose home in France bore that name. 

Mr. Ross continued the adornment of the grounds be- 
gun by his father-in-laAv, enlarged the boundaries of the 
estate, and made sundry additions to the buildings. In 
the post-Revolutionary period the Grange was in the 
heyday of its magnificence. Miss Elizabeth Mifflin, a 
granddaughter of John Ross, left a manuscript account 
of the Grange and the manner of life there, based on 
the authority of her sister, an eye-witness. To quote in 
part, she says: 

Nothing could be more picturesque, beautiful and elegant 
than this highly favoured spot. The gardens, the fountain, tlie 
Bath in a private garden with walks, skirted with boxwood and 
the trumpet creeper in rich luxuriance overhanging the door and 
gateways, where the water was so intensely cold that few entered 
in. The Green-houses and Hothouses, the Dairy, the extensive 
orchards of every variety of fruit; and then the long, dark walk 
%'s of a mile in extent, shaded by tall forest trees, and where 
the Tulip poplar abounded, and where the sun scarcely dared to 
penetrate. On one side a ravine through which a creek flowed 
gurgling and reflecting the sun beams shut out from the dark 
walk, with the sloping meadows beyond, all presenting a picture 
never to be forgotten. Near the beginning of this dark walk 
Mr. Ross had caused to be constructed, on a spot ten or twelve 
feet above the walk, a semi-circular seat capable of holding twenty 
persons and a place for a table. On the 4th of July and other 
warm days of summer he would take his friends there and iced 
11 161 


wines would be served. A bell wire, communicating with the 
house, was arranged to call the servant when wanted and avoid 
his constant presence. No roses nor honeysuckles were so beau- 
tiful and fragrant as those from The Grange; no strawberries 
and cherries, no pears, peaches, apples and quinces so fine. The 
place was in the highest state of cultivation, the grass and grain 
crops unrivalled in the neighbourhood and really nothing was 
left undone to contribute to the beauties and luxuries with which 
the Grange abounded. 

A glowing eulogy surely, but fully deserved. ISliss 
jNIifflin's words could quite as fittingly be applied to con- 
ditions at a later date. She might have added that the 
house is approached from the road by a broad avenue a 
quarter of a mile in length, shaded by great over-arching 

The manuscript record goes on to say of Mr. Ross 
that " his house was always open and his hospitable table 
prepared to receive his friends." Washington, Franklin, 
Generals Knox and Mifflin, Robert Morris, the Due 
d'Orleans, Lafayette, Marbois, Talleyrand, Volney, 
" and all the prominent people of that day which abounded 
with great men " were visitors, and some of them fre- 
quent visitors at the Grange. Mr. Ross knew the value 
of good dinners as adjuncts to pleasant social intercourse. 
He was noted not only for the excellent quality of his 
uincs and the lavish quantity in which they were set forth 
bv.l Also for the superiority of the viands that graced his 
board and the guests who sat down at the Grange table 
could always be sure of finding the best that kitchen or 
cellar could offer. The story goes that the Father of 
his Country on one occasion having dined at the Grange 



not wisely, perhaps, but too well, collided violently with 
one of the gateposts on leaving the grounds. It is al- 
ways a satisfaction to recall any anecdote that shows 
General Washing-ton as a man of real flesh and blood, 
of like passions with ourselves, and not as an impassive 
human iceberg, the image so many school-books errone- 
ously hold up for emulation. In fairness to the General, 
however, be it said that the far end of the avenue is verv 
dark with overhanging trees. That Mr. Ross's guests 
were appreciative of the culinary efforts of the Grange 
cook may be gathered from the following incident: After 
]Mr. Ross's death in 1806, when the estate was found to 
be much embarrassed and it became imperative to cur- 
tail expenditures materially, the departing cook, a high- 
priced functionary, was seen directing the removal of a 
large and heavy trunk from the premises. On investiga- 
tion it proved that the trunk was full of Spanish dollars 
given by visitors in recognition of tickled palates and 
carefulh^ hoarded against a rainy day. 

Mr. Ross's executor sold the Grange in 1810 to John 
H. Brinton and after Mr. Brinton's death in 1816, 
Manuel Eyre became the owner and occupied the house 
till his death in 1845. jNIr. Eyre changed the bath of 
former days, situated at a corner of the walled garden 
or the Dutch garden as it is often called, and made a 
schoolhouse of it for his children. The schoolroom was 
on the first floor and on the second lived the tutor. 

In 1849 Mr. Eyre's son-in-law, John Ashhurst, ac- 
quired the property and lived there, and after him mem- 
bers of his family held it till recent years. In 1850 ow- 
ing to the decayed condition of much of the fabric, ISIr. 



Ashliiirst found it necessary to engage in such extensive 
repairs that lie practically rehuilt the house, covering the 
stone walls with stucco, adding porches, and imparting its 
present English Gothic appearance. Having no use for 
the bath turned into a schoolroom, he battered it partly 
do'VMi, making an artificial ruin, and harnessed the foun- 
tain, that originally supplied the bath, to a waterwheel 
that now forces the supply into the house. After the 
Civil War, ]\Ir. Ashhurst built the porte-cochere and the 
wing abutting on the walled garden. He also took great 
interest in landscape gardening and largely increased the 
number of rare and valuable trees and shrubs on the 

The Grange represents nearly two centuries of 
growth as far as the house itself is concerned and more 
than that with respect to the gardens. Such a setting 
for a country home it would be impossible to create with- 
out the aid of years. On every hand great box trees at- 
test the age of the place and the lilacs and sjTingas, 
grown into trees, proclaim the lapse of summers since 
first they were set out. The slow-growing yew refuses 
to be hurried and attains robust proportions only in the 
course of many seasons. The terraced garden, too, shows 
frequent traces of great age and the ivy, covering the 
stable wall that forms a sheltering backgi'ound, proves 
the flight of years by the thickness of its matted stems. 
Outside the garden, hawthornes, here and there become 
tree-high, tell you they are not of yesterday's planting. 
No matter which way one turns the evidences of care 
and well-considered purpose through long periods of time 
are evervwhere to be seen. All these marks of man's 



long-standing design set among venerable trees left from 
the primeval forest cast around an air of antiquity that 
impresses even the most thoughtless. 

At a fork of the driveway some little distance below 
the house is a " William Penn Milestone " with the Pro- 
prietary's coat-of-arms on one side and the figure 5 on 
the reverse. It formerly stood on the Old Haverford 
Road where it was placed in 1793 and was moved hither 
by Mr. Ashhurst as a matter of antiquarian interest 
when the road authorities w^ere none too careful about the 
preservation of these ancient landmarks. Higher up the 
hill behind the house stands the historic Bell Tree, a 
great black walnut fourteen feet in girth, where hung in 
Captain Wilcox's day, nearly two hundred years ago, a 
bell used to summon the slaves at meal times and when 
their day's work was done. Nowhere else are such splen- 
did specimens of box to be seen in such profusion. The 
gardens and pleasure grounds would delight the hearts 
of tree lovers. The tulips, the horse chestnuts, the dog- 
woods, the magnolias, the spruce, and the fir, with a hun- 
dred others, noble-sized trees every one of them, unite to 
make the spot one of the most delightful places 

It is no wonder that all its owners and their families, 
aye and their friends too, have loved it with an intense 
devotion. The Grange takes a strong hold on one's heart- 
strings and never lets go. The stately avenue has been 
cut in two by an intruding railroad, the rustic bower in 
the dark walk where John Ross was wont to entertain 
the Revolutionary worthies is gone, cut through by the 
same railroad, the old walled garden where the dainty 



lilies of the valley used to spring in prodigal abundance is 
overgrown with fern and weeds and the box borders long 
unpriined have almost obliterated the pathway they were 
meant to mark, but still the ancient low-browed Grange, 
so like an old French house with its square, heavy-mul- 
lioned casement windows, staunchly bears the burden of 
its years and there is still enough beauty and charm left, 
even though its borders have been narrowed, to satisfy 
even the critical. 



NE of the oldest seats near Phila- 
delphia is Harriton on the Gulf Road 
about half a mile from Bryn ]\Iawr 
in Lower Merion Township, JNIont- 
gomery County. It was built in 
1704 by Rowland Ellis, one of the 
settlers in the Welsh Barony, and 
has endured comparatively little changed to the pres- 
ent time. The house, two storeys in height with a high 
pitched roof lighted by dormers, is T shaped, substantially 
built of native grey field stone. Its lines and general as- 
pect, as might be expected, show all the little character- 
istic peculiarities of the type usually found in the build- 
ings erected by the Welsh settlers. It might he said they 
spoke in Georgian with a Welsh accent. 

The main part of the house is thirty-seven feet long 
and twenty-two in depth, while the wing in the middle 
of the rear is twenty-two by nineteen feet — a large house 
for the Colonists of those early days, but the Welsh al- 
w^aj^s liked large houses. The house-door admits directly 
to a great living-room into which a smaller parlour opens. 
The dining-room, stairway, and kitchens are in the rear. 
In 1719 Richard Harrison, the son-in-law of Isaac 
Norris, came hither from Maryland and bought the es- 
tate from the Ellises. In 1774 Hannah Harrison, the 
daughter of Richard and Hannah Norris Harrison and 
heiress to the Harriton estate, then in her forty-seventh 



year, was married to Charles Thomson, a widower of 
fortv-five, wlioni John Adams called the " Sam Adams 
of l*hiladelphia." 

Cliarles Thomson was born at Maghera, County 
Derry, Ireland, in 17*29, and when eleven years old came 
out to America with his father, brother, and three sisters. 
The father died on the way over and the five children 
were unceremoniously put off at Newcastle by the cap- 
tain, who wished to avoid further care of them. By the 
aid of the friends he soon made for himself and through 
his quick wit and indomitable determination to succeed, 
he supported himself and gained a serviceable education. 

In 1750 we find him in the position of tutor in the 
College of Philadelphia, and for some years thereafter 
he gave his time to teaching. Subsequently he became 
a merchant and also took an active part in politics. He 
was a politician by temperament and inevitably gravi- 
tated into political prominence in the years that were to 
follow. He served on various important committees, 
signed the Non-Importation Agreement of 1765 and in 
1774 became a member of the General Assembly for the 
City of Philadelphia. 

L^pon the assembling of the Continental Congress in 
Carpenters' Hall, a secretary was required who was not 
a delegate. Charles Thomson was chosen upon the nomi- 
nation of Thomas Mifflin. He had just married Miss 
Harrison and on the very morning that Congress as- 
sembled, drove in to the city with her from Harriton, on 
what was really the wedding trip, all imconscious of the 
duties awaiting him. As he stepped out of the " chair " in 
which they were riding, a messenger came up bearing the 



compliments of Peyton Randolph, president of the Con- 
gress, and desired Mr. Thomson's inmiediate attendance at 
the session just assembling. Taking a hasty leave of his 
bride, he went at once to discharge his new office. As an 
amends for her curtailed bridal tour Congress voted Mrs. 
Thomson a present. It came in the form of a silver urn 
which has been proudly treasured ever since. 

Mr. Thomson filled the secretaryship so ably that he 
continued to serve Congress in that capacity for fourteen 
years. During the Revolutionary struggle and the in- 
fancy of the young Republic no one had a better oppor- 
tunity than he to know all the inmost details of all that 
occurred. He was strongly urged to put all this knowl- 
edge of secret history into permanent form. He began 
the task but saw, as he progressed, that the reputations 
of so many men, then invested with the halo of patriotism, 
would be hopelessly blasted that he gave up the under- 
taking in disgust and burned all his papers. 

Charles Thomson continued master of Harriton till 
his death in 1824, after which the estate descended to 
Mrs. Levi JMorris, a relative of Mrs. Thomson's, from 
whom it passed in time to the Vaux family, the present 



WAYNESBOROUGH is situated in 
the Township of Easttown and the 
County of Chester, within two miles 
of Paoli and four miles of Valley 
Forge. It was the countryseat of 
Captain Isaac Wayne, youngest son 
of Anthony Wayne wiio went from 
Yorkshire, England, to County Wicklow, Ireland, and 
commanded a troop of dragoons at the battle of the Boyne 
in the forces of William III. He emigrated to Pennsyl- 
vania in 1722 and, after spending two 3'ears examining the 
country, purchased sixteen hundred acres in Chester 
County and erected his house. There were four sons. Of 
these Isaac owned and cultivated the five hundred acres in 
Easttown Township still constituting Waynesborough. 
He also conducted a tannery and took an active part in 
the political controversies of the times, serving, too, as 
captain in the French and Indian War, having raised 
two companies to fight during 1755, 1757 and 1788. He 
was a tall, handsome man, of soldierly bearing, blunt in 
speech after the fashion of those much in garrison life, 
a good horseman, and a high liver, but temperate. He 
accumulated a large estate and enlarged the house at 
Waynesborough considerably. It is built of brown ir- 
regular stone with white pointing and has a wing at each 
end. Over the doorway is a hood which is not horizontal. 
A carpenter who daily passed the house to his work was 
so disturbed by this hood that he offered to straighten 


' i ) , 3 * 

^ t t y t 

l-H M 

e » 

n o 

? o 


it free of charge, but as it was built that way, Major 
William Wayne refused. On the right of the hall is the 
parlour which is to-day in its original condition and just 
as it was when Lafayette visited the house in 1825. 
Over the beautiful mantel hang General Anthony 
Wayne's swords and pistols and sash, just above his por- 
trait. Between the doorway into the parlour and the 
stairway in the rear of the hall are two folding, latticed 
doors attached to each wall and, back of these, one passes 
into what is now the living-room with its huge fireplace, 
on the one side, and the dining-room on the other. It 
was once the custom to draw the trunks of trees into the 
fireplace by means of horses and chains, there being an 
opening under the windows on each side of the room. Back 
of the house is a huge box-bush where the British sol- 
diers imagined General Wayne had taken refuge on the 
night of the Paoli massacre, three miles away. Mrs. 
Wayne saw them coming down the road and exclaimed, 
" Here comes the General now," but it was not he. He 
was too busy with his duty as a soldier in getting his 
command away in safety and the pursuing redcoats, sup- 
posing he might be there in hiding, ran their swords 
through the old box-bush in vain. 

The opponents of the Proprietary interests elected 
Captain Wayne to the Provincial Assembly several times 
and he is portrayed as one of the characters in the 
" Chronicles of Nathan Ben Saddi," 1758, one of the 
most spirited bits of literature the American Colonies 
produced. His activity against the Proprietary interests 
led him into a bitter quarrel with Judge JNIoore of Moore 
Hall, an old-time aristocrat and a pet of the Governour. 



Isaac \V^ayiie was an earnest and loyal churchman and 
one of* the supporters of old St. David's Church at Rad- 
nor. His wife was Elizabeth, daughter of Richard 
Iddings, of Chester County. 

He is best known, however, as the father of Anthony 
Wayne, the most picturesque figure of the Revolution and 
tlie most brilliant soldier Pennsylvania has produced. 

Anthony Wayne was born at Waynesborough Janu- 
ary 1, 1745, and grew up on his father's acres and about 
the tannery, and he received his early education from 
his uncle, Gabriel Wayne, who conducted a school nearby. 
He early exhibited the qualities which shaped his career 
as this letter from his schoolmaster to his father shows: 

I really expect that parental affection blinds you, and that 
you have mistaken your son's capacity. What he may be best 
qualified for, I know not — one tiling I am certain of, he will never 
make a scholar; he may perhaps make a soldier; he has already 
distracted the brains of two thirds of the boys under my charge, 
by rehearsals of battles, sieges, etc. They exhibit more the ap- 
pearance of Indians and Harlequins than students. This one 
decorated with a cap of many colours, others habited in coats as 
variegated, like Joseph's of old — some laid up with broken heads 
and black eyes. During noon, in place of the usual games of 
amusement he has the boys employed in throwing up redoubts, 
skirmishing, etc. I must be candid with you brother Isaac — un- 
less Anthony pays more attention to his books, I shall be under 
the painful necessity of dismissing him from the school. 

It was in the summer of 1759 that this letter was 
written and after it was read at home young Wayne 
showed one other mark of the good soldier — a ready sub- 
ordination to authority. His father ordered him to re- 



turn to school and devote his time to his studies instead 
of mimic war, and he did it. At the end of eighteen 
months, his uncle acknowledged that he could instruct 
him no further. 

His bent was for mathematics and he spent two j^ears, 
1763-66, studying surveying at the Academy in Phila- 
delphia, which is now the University of Pennsylvania. 
An elaborate and artistic survey of Vincent Township, 
Chester County, made by him, is now at the Pennsylvania 
Historical Society. 

An indication as to his associates, and no doubt visi- 
tors at Waynesborough, can be gathered from the fact 
that at the age of twenty-one in 1765 he joined ^vith 
Matthew Clarkson, John Hughes, William Smith, the 
creator of the University, William Moore of Moore Hall, 
Joseph Richardson, captain in the French and Indian 
War, Benjamin Franklin, Israel Jacobs, afterward a 
member of Congress, and others of the leading men of 
the Province in an effort to found a colony in Canada. 
He went to Canada as the surveyor of the company and 
spent the summers of 1765 and 1766 there. Thus began 
the active career which kept him much from home in the 
public service. His neighbours sent him to several of the 
conventions which took the preliminary steps leading up 
to the Revolutionary War, and we can picture many an 
important conference at Waynesborough in these stir- 
ring times. From the head of the Chester County Com- 
mittee, Wayne was promoted to a place on the Colonial 
Committee of Safety by the resolution of the Provincial 
Assembly June 30, 1775, together with Benjamin Frank- 
lin, John Dickinson, and Robert Morris. The resolu- 



tioiis place the word " Gentlemen " at the end of the list 
of names. For three years he sat in the Assembly and 
he was a member of the Pennsylvania Convention which 
later ratified the Constitution of the United States. In 
1775 the soldier's instinct plunged him into the conflict 
and he organised a regiment of minute-men in Chester 
County. On January 4, 1770, he was appointed colonel 
of the Fourth Pennsylvania Regiment and was hurried 
away to Canada with his regiment spending very little 
of tlie remainder of his life at Waynesborough. 

In August, 1777, General Washington sent him into 
Chester County to organise the Pennsylvania militia to 
assist the regular army in resisting Howe who was to 
attack Philadelphia, and whose route must lie through 
Wayne's home county. How well he served in nearly 
every important engagement from Canada in the north 
to Georgia in the south, throughout the struggle for In- 
dependence, and later as the capable General-in-Chief of 
the army of the United States, who in personal command 
conquered the middle and northwest and secured for civili- 
sation the territory between the JMississippi and Ohio 
Kivers, is well known. 

He married "Polly" (Mary) Penrose, daughter of 
Bartholomew and granddaughter of a like named person 
who built ships at Delaware Avenue and Market Street 
in partnership with William Penn and James Logan 
and sailed to many foreign parts in command of them. 
General Wayne Avi-ote many affectionate and solicitous 
letters to " Polly " inquiring after her welfare and the 
progress of his children. He writes from Blue Bell on 
the other side of the river August 26, 1777: 



My Dear Girl — I am percmtorily forbid by His Excellency 
to leave the Army — my case is hard — I am Obliged to do the 
duty of three General Officers — but if it was not the case — as a 
Gen'l Officer I could not Obtain leave of Absence — I must there- 
fore in the most pressing Manner Request you to meet me to- 
morrow Evening at Naaman's Creek — pray bring j\Ir. Robinson 
with my Little Son & Daughter along — It may probably happen 
that we may stay in that Neighbourhood for a day or two, — My 
best love and Compliments to all friends 
I am, Dear Polly, 


Anth'y Wayne. 
To Mrs. Mary Wayne, Chester County. 

After the entrance of the British army into Philadel- 
phia he writes again to cheer her, from the Trappe, Sep- 
tember 30, 1777: 

Dear Polly — I thought you had a mind far above being De- 
pressed at a little unfavourable Circumstance — the Enemy's being 
in Possession of Philadelphia is of no more Consequence than their 
being in possession of the City of New York or Boston — they 
may hold it for a time — but must leave it with Circumstances of 
shame and Disgrace before the Close of the Winter. Our Army 
is now in full health and spirits, and far stronger than it was 
at the Battle of the Brandy wine — we are daily Receiving Rein- 
forcements, and are now drawing near the Enemy — who \vill 
shortly pay dear for the little Advantage they have lately gained 
— Our Army to the northward under General Gates is Victorious — 
Matters looked much more Gloomy in that Quarter four weeks 
ago — than they do at this time here — it is our turn next and 
altho' appearances are a little gloomy at present — yet they will 
be soon dissapated and a more pleasing prospect take place. — 



Give my kindest love and wislies to both Our Mothers and Sis- 
ters — tell them my sword will shortly point out the way to Victory, 
peace and Happiness — kiss our little people for me — Remove my 
books and Valuable Writings some Distance from my Own House — 
if not already done — this is but an Act of prudence — and not to 
be considered as proceeding from any Other Motive. 
Adieu my Dear Girl and believe me Yours 

most sincerely 

Ant'y Wayne. 

The general was a rigid disciplinarian and endeav- 
oured to prevent his men from preying upon the farmers. 
This was hardly possible at Valley Forge, however, for 
the poor starving fellows were desperate. Devault 
Beaver, whose farm was adjacent to Wayne's head- 
quarters at Walker's place during the winter of 1777-78, 
complained to the general of these depredations and was 
told to shoot the first one that annoyed him. Being a 
Tory he took the first opportunity and shot a soldier milk- 
ing his cow. He escaped with his life through General 
Wayne's intervention, but the companions of the dead 
man buried his remains near Beaver's barn so that he 
Mould always have the remembrance of his deed before 
him. R. Francis Wood, Esquire, of Philadelphia, who 
recentl}'^ o^vned the place, has corroborated the story by 
finding the body in the place described. 

On June 24, 1778, after the British evacuation of 
Philadelphia, Washington invited his generals to a coun- 
cil at Hopewell, New Jersey, wherein he stated to them 
the conditions of his own force and that of the enemy, 
and asked them to reply to this question, " Will it be ad- 
visable to hazard a general action?" Sixteen generals 



were gathered before Washington and all answered 
as against such an action until it came to Anthony 
Wayne's turn. Washington then said to him, " What 
would you do, General? " He arose in his place and re- 
plied with emphasis, " Fight, sir. " There were but two 
others who agreed with him, but Washington was one of 
the two and the Battle of Monmouth was the result. 
After this event, writing in July, 1778, General Wayne 
characterises the foolish fair who attended the Mischi- 
anza while the starving army of the Republic were suffer- 
ing at Valley Forge: 

Tell those Philadelphia ladies that the heavenly, sweet, pretty 
red-coats — the accomplished gentlemen of the guards & grena- 
diers have been humbled on the plains of Monmouth. The 
Knights of the Blended Rose and of the Burning Mount have 
resigned their laurels to Rebel officers, who will lay them at the 
feet of those virtuous daughters of America, who cheerfully gave 
up ease and affluence in a city, for liberty and peace of mind 
in a cottage. 

In every account of the battles in which he was en- 
gaged we find that " Wayne led the advance." Six 
wounds were the result of the ready exposure of his 
person. The State of Georgia gave him eight hundred 
and thirty acres of a rice plantation in recognition of his 
able services under Greene in that State but he could 
not afford the labourers to cultivate it. He was led into 
debt and an unfortunate controversy over this, finally 
paying the debt, sacrificing the Georgia estate, but sav- 
ing WajTiesborough. His absence from home was a 
costly thing. He writes in his Ledger, ^larch, 1784: 

12 177 


Mr. Shannon lias sunk for me since the beginning of Jan- 
uary, 1776, upwards of 2400£ in stock, exclusive of the interest 
for near 8 years. Had he managed my stock in trade to the 
advantage wliich others have done in the Course of the late war, 
I ought to have had at a moderate computation seven thousand 
pound in stock in place of nothing. A. W. 

He wrote to Dr. Rush in 1782 just before his return 
home that his constitution was 

broken down and nearly exhausted by encountering almost every 
excess of fatigue, difficulty and danger in the defence of the 
rights and liberty of America from the frozen lakes of Canada 
to the bumins: sands of Florida. 


In July, 1783, he returned from Charleston, shat- 
tered and enfeebled by fever, unable to take part in the 
final ceremonies attending Washington's farewell to the 
army at New York, or to attend the Commander-in-Chief 
as he passed through Philadelphia on his way to Mt. 
Vernon. His Georgia gift continued to give him trouble 
and he writes to his wife from Richmond, Georgia, July 
5, 1790: 

I had intended writing you a long letter, but my head will 
not permit me, at present, to write with anj-^ degree of coherency. 
Persecution has almost drove me mad and brings to my recollec- 
tion a few lines from " The Old Soldier," — 

Once gay in life and free from anxious care, 
I through the furrows drove the shining share, 
I saw my waving fields with plenty crowned. 
And yellow Ceres joyous smile around, 
Till roused by freedom at my country's call 
I left my peaceful home & gave up all. 


, 3 ' 1 1 -> 

17 •> 1 ■» 

> , -• » ^ 


J.UINt. UiniM AT WAV.NK.SlU)lilH (.11 


Now, forced alas ! in distant climes to tread, 
This crazy body longs to join the dead. 
Ungrateful country ! when the danger's o'er. 
Your bravest sons cold charity implore. 
Ah! heave for me a sympathetic sigh 
And wipe the falling tear from sorrow's eye. 

Adieu — a long adieu 

Yours most affectionately A. W. 

After the Revolutionary struggle he spent ten years 
at home at Waynesborough before he was placed in com- 
mand of the army of the United States and sent west. 
lie returned home again in 1795 and was received in 
Philadelphia by the City Troop and with salvos of can- 
non, ringing of bells, and fireworks. " Both body and 
mind are fatigued by the contest " were his pathetic words, 
and soon afterward President Washington sent him to 
Detroit as commissioner, on his return whence he died at 
Presque Isle, now Erie, December 15, 1796. 

In the churchyard at St. David's, Radnor, with which 
his family have always been connected, his remains are 
marked by a modest monument, erected by the Society 
of the Cincinnati, on which these words are inscribed: 

Major General Anthony Wayne was bom at Waynesborough 
in Chester County of Pennsylvania A.D. 1745. After a life 
of Honour and Usofullness He died in December 1796, At a 
military post on the shores of Lake Erie, Commander-in-Chief of 
the Army of The United States. His military achievements Are 
consecrated In the history of his country And in The hearts 
of his countrymen. His remains Are here Deposited. In honour 
of the distinguished Military Services of Major General Anthony 
Wayne And as an affectionate tribute of respect to his Memory 



This Stone was erected by his Companions In Arms The Penn- 
sylvania State Society of The Cincinnati, July 4th. A.D. 1809, 
Tliirty Fourth anniversary of The Independence of the United 
States, an Event which constitutes the most Appropriate Eulo- 
giuin Of an American Soldier and Patriot. 

Upon the centre of the outer line at Valley Forge 
stands a recently erected noble equestrian statue of the 
general. It is where he stood on that hallowed camp- 
ground and the place he held upon many a field of battle. 
There is no commonwealth in America but has a county 
or town bearing his name, and one of the most inspiring 
lyrics of the Civil War tells how " The bearded men are 
marching in the land of Anthony Wayne." 

In appearance General Wayne was above what is 
termed the middle stature and was well proportioned. 
His hair was dark, his forehead high and handsomely 
formed. His eyes were dark hazel, intelligent, quick and 
penetrating. His nose inclined to be aquiline. His was a 
bold spirit, and no man either in civil or military affairs 
was potent enough to give him affront with impunity. 
He was frank, open, and vigorous and did not hesitate 
to say " damn." At the same time he was almost senti- 
mental in his affections and attaclmient to his wife and 
little son and daughter. He lived well and drank tea 
as well as wine. His writings show a philosophical ten- 
dency and he wrote to his son, " let integrity, industry 
and probity be your guides." Exemplary in the neatness 
of his apparel, we find him ordering: 

One pair of elegant gold epaulets, superfine huff sufficient to 
face two uniform coats, with hair and silk, four dozen best yel- 



low gilt coat buttons, plain and buff colour lining suitable to the 
facing of one coat. 

He was attended by a body servant, carriage and 
horses and took table linen and napkins with him. The 
courtly Mrs. Byrd, after he had been at Westover, 

I shall ever retain the highest sense of your politeness and 
humanity, and take every opportunity of testifying my gratitude. 

The general's children were Isaac and Margaretta. 
Isaac was born at Waynesborough in 1768 and lived to 
the ripe old age of eighty-four. He was educated at 
Dickinson College and studied law with William Lewis, 
Esquire, in Philadelphia, being admitted to the bar in 
1794. He resided at Waynesborough and married Eliza- 
beth Smith, August 25, 1802. Isaac Wayne was a Fed- 
eralist and was elected by that party a member of the 
Assembly in 1800 and 1801. He went to the State 
senate in 1806 and 1810, and in 1814 was nominated by 
his party for Governour and for member of Congress 
from Chester and Montgomery Counties, but was not 
elected. He ran again for Congress in 1822 with James 
Buchanan and Samuel Edwards as his colleagues. He was 
elected but declined to serve and retired from political life 
in 1824. Isaac Wayne had many of the qualities of his 
father whom he worshijiped. In 1812 he raised a regi- 
ment of cavalry and was elected colonel. They were in 
the field during the war but lacked opportunity for ac- 
tive service. None of the colonel's five children left de- 
scendants and the family has been carried on through 
his sister IVIargaretta Wayne, who married William 



Kiclmrdson Atlee. Their daughter, INIarj^ married 
Issacliar Evans and a son, William, changed his name to 
AVayne at the death of his uncle Isaac who bequeathed 
Waynesborough to him. The son of this William Wayne 
is still seated at Waynesborough, where he looks out on 
the old estate — a cultivated farm, comfortable homestead, 
and picturesque woodland — situated on the edge of the 
beautiful Chester Valley and stretching in the far dis- 
tance to the Schuylkill. 




UDGE MOORE of Moore Hall was 
one of the highly picturesque char- 
acters of Pennsylvania life in the 
highly picturesque eighteenth cen- 
tury. Not a little did he add to 
the spice of existence in that stirring 
period of our history. His person- 
ality was always striking but doubly so when in his 
own peculiar setting on the estate that takes its name 
from him, where he lived in baronial style, surrounded 
and waited upon by his many slaves and redemptioners, 
and lorded it over the whole countryside. 

Not far from Phoenixville in Chester County, Moore 
Hall stands on high ground overlooking the Schuylkill 
River close by the mouth of Pickering Creek. Here he 
built, in 1722, or rather his father built for him as a 
gift, a frame house that gave place a little later to the 
substantial stone mansion still standing. In general, it 
answered the description of other countryseats, such as 
Stenton or Hope Lodge, built about the same date. Un- 
fortunately, its appearance was totally changed not many 
years since when it was subjected to extensive repairs and 
alterations. No one can regard it, however, even in its 
modernised state, without being reminded of the domi- 
nating presence of the masterful old Loyalist who dwelt 
there till a full ripe age, faithful to the very end in his 
allegiance to the British Crown. 

Descended of an ancient Cavalier family, the Hon- 



curable John Moore, who came hither in 1688, was some- 
time King's collector of the port of Philadelphia, attor- 
ney-general of the Province, and judge of the Admir- 
alty Court. He had seven children, one of whom, born 
in 1C99, was William, the Judge ]Moore of Moore HaU. 
At the age of nineteen, William JMoore was sent to Ox- 
ford to complete his education and graduated there in 
1710. On the occasion of his marriage in 1722, his father 
settled upon him the house and surrounding plantation 
of twelve hundred acres by the banks of the Pickering 
Creek, where he thenceforward made his home and dwelt 
till his death in 1783. 

His wife was the Lady Williamina, daughter of 
David, third Earl of Wemyss, who had accompanied 
her brother when he fled to this country in consequence 
of his connexion with one of the Jacobite uprisings. 
From the union of Judge Moore and the Lady Wil- 
liamina, many Philadelphia families trace lines of de- 
scent, among them the Bonds, Cadwaladers, Rawles, 
Smiths, Whelens, the Hobarts of Pottstown, the Du- 
Ponts of Delaware, the Goldsboroughs of Maryland, and 
sundry members of the German and English nobility. 

Lady Williamina seems to have been blessed not only 
with remarkable personal beauty but with most sterling 
qualities of character as well. She was greatly beloved 
by her children and husband, who, in his will wherein he 
leaves her all his estate, paid her a deep tribute when he 
wrote of her: 

Never friglitened by the rude rabble, or dismayed by the 
insolent threats of the ruling powers — happy woman, a pattern 



of her sex, and worthy the relationship she bears to the Right 
Honourable and noble family from whence she sprang. 

William Moore was a devoted churchman and served 
on the vestries of St. James's, Evansburg, and St. David's, 
Radnor. His early interest and activity in political af- 
fairs brought him a seat in the Asembly in 1733. In 
1741 he was appointed a justice of the peace and a judge 
of the County Court and for a space of some forty years 
was president judge over the Orphans', Common Pleas 
and Quarter Sessions Courts of Chester County. Dur- 
ing the troubles with the Indians, about the middle of 
the eighteenth century, he was colonel of one of the county 
regiments of militia. 

From this military connexion grew an occurrence that 
set the whole Province by the ears and was finally car- 
ried to the King for settlement. Judge Moore was a 
warm supporter of the Proprietary party and in the hot 
disputes between the Governour and the Assembly about 
measures of defence against the Indians he energetically 
espoused the side of the former. The Assembly, being 
controlled by the Friends, was opposed to armed resist- 
ance or the formation of any military organisation. The 
Governour and a numerous body of the Colonists, on the 
other hand, realising fully the acute danger from the 
Indians demanded measures for organised resistance. 

When the Assembly was paltering, dawdling, and 
wasting valuable time about passing a much-needed mili- 
tia law, Judge Moore wrote that two thousand men would 
march down to Philadelphia from Chester County and 
compel them to pass it. The pride of that body, which 
always took itself very seriously, was wounded and from 



tliat time oil it lent a ready ear to the many complaints 
of the judge's political enemies who sought his removal. 
\Vhile Judge Moore's imperious manner and vigorous, 
summary administration of justice, coupled with the aris- 
tocratic state maintained at Moore Hall, doubtless drew 
the rustic envj"^ and dislike of some narrow boors in the 
neighbourhood, there can be little question that the great 
majority of the complaints charging him with tjTanny, 
injustice and extortion were inspired by political enmity 
ever ready to catch at any straw of accusation or slander. 

The Assembly summoned Judge jNIoore to answer 
these charges. He, however, conceiving that they had 
no authorised cognisance in the matter, very properly re- 
fused to appear. Piqued at his repeated refusals to heed 
their citations, they declared him guilty of extortion 
and many other misdemeanours and asked for his removal 
from the bench. Following close upon this JNIoore pub- 
lished in several of the newspapers a review of the As- 
sembly's action terming it " virulent and scandalous " 
and a " continued string of the severest calumny and 
most rancorous epithets conceived in all the terms of 
malice and party rage." 

The new Assembly, with substantially the same per- 
sonnel as the old, as soon as it convened, retaliated by 
procuring a warrant for the judge's arrest and sent 
two armed men to JNIoore Hall to fetch him to gaol. They 
haled him to the city and cast him into prison along wdth 
Provost Smith, whom they accused of complicity in pre- 
paring the objectionable document, wliich they ordered 
should be publicly l)urned by the hangman. 

Denying the justice of their imprisonment, they both 



refused to plead and after being confined with common 
felons for about three months they were released. There- 
upon Provost Smith went to England and carried the 
grievance to the King. The matter resulted in a victory 
for Moore and Smith and an expression of " His Maj- 
esty's high displeasure " to the Assembly for their 

At the outbreak of the Revolution Judge ^loore re- 
mained loyal in his allegiance to the Crown and was 
" most vehement in his disapproval of any attempt on 
the part of the Colonies to separate from the mother 
country." During the encampment at Valley Forge 
Colonel Riddle and other distinguished officers were quar- 
tered at Moore Hall, where they were courteously treated 
by the master. Any allusion, however, to the right of the 
Colonies to throw off the Rritish voke would throw the 
old judge " into a state bordering on apoplexy." On one 
occasion when a party of soldiers, sent to deprive Loyalists 
of their arms, went to Moore Hall and found the 
haughty occupant confined to an easy chair, suffering 
from a frightful attack of gout, which did not tend to im- 
prove his irascible temper, they discovered a most beau- 
tifully wrought sword, the handle of which was inlaid with 
gold, silver, and precious stones. They were about to 
make off with it, when Judge IMoore insisted on having 
a last look at the prized heirloom. No sooner had 
he taken it in his fingers than he snapped the blade from 
the handle. Holding the hilt tightly in his right hand, 
he threw the useless blade at the feet of the leader of the 
party. " There," he cried, with flashing eye, " take that 
if you want to fight, but you shall not rob me of my plate! " 



Despite his reputation for irascibility and arrogance, 
Judge ISIoore was a kind and loving father, an indulgent 
master, and ever generous in his hospitality. His 
indulgence, however, was not always requited w^ith grati- 
tude as we may infer from an advertisement in a news- 
paper of 1730, which incidentally gives a pleasing domes- 
tic touch as well as an insight into the judge's wardrobe. 
It says: 

Run away from William Moore of Moore Hall, in Chester 
County, a likely young Negro Man, named Jack ; speaks but 
indifferent English, and had on when he went away a new Ozen- 
burg Shirt, a pair of striped homespun Breeches, a striped tick- 
ing Wastecoat, an old Dimity Coat of his master's, with buttons 
of Horseteeth set in Brass and Cloth sleeves, a Felt Hat, almost 
new. Whoever secures the said Negro and will bring him to his 
Master or to John Moore, Esq., in Philadelphia, shall receive 
Twenty Shillings Reward and reasonable charges. 

William Mooke. 

Judge INIoore died in May, 1783, and was buried on 
the threshold of St. David's Church, Radnor, where every- 
one entering passes over his body. Lady Williamina died 
a year later and was buried beside him. INIoore Hall even* 
tually passed from the family and is now owned and occu- 
pied by a brother of former Governour Pennypacker. 



'^T the crest of a rising ground on the 
northern bank of the Schuylkill, 
almost directly opposite Valley 
Forge, stands Vaux Hill, or Fat- 
land, one of the historic spots of a 
neighbourhood abounding in Revo- 
lutionary memories. So closely is 
the house screened by great ancient trees that only in 
winter when the leaves are fallen can one catch a glimpse 
from a distance of its stately w^hite porticos gleaming 
through the interlacing branches. Here, in 1775, just be- 
fore the outbreak of the Revolution, came James Vaux, 
of Croydon, near London, sprung of ancient but impov- 
erished line, and took up land, attracted, doubtless, in 
part by the name of the district, which truly reflects its 

The Vaux Hill or Fatland estate covers a large part of 
what was known to the earliest settlers as the fat land 
of the Egypt District. It was so called by them because 
of its natural character. Lying just below the conflu- 
ence of the Perkiomen Creek and the Schuylkill River is 
a broad acreage of meadowland, so regularly inundated 
during the spring freshets and, after their subsidence, so 
deeply encrusted with a rich deposit of alluvial soil, 
brought down from the upper river, that its resemblance 
to Egypt and the life-bearing overflow of the Nile was 
too close to pass unnoticed. 

James Vaux, the progenitor of the elder branch of the 



fuiiiiiy in this country, was a notable farmer and it is of in- 
terest to observe that he introduced the culture of red 
clover into America. His idea it was, also, to sow the 
seeds among the wheat or rye so that the young clover 
plants might have protection until they got a good start. 
For our notions of the appearance of the house as it 
was in James Vaux's day and for many years afterward, 
we are entirely de^^endent on descriptions. In the diary 
of Robert Sutcliff, an English Friend, covering his 
"travels in some parts of North America" in 1804 and 
the two following years, he tells us that 

on the estate is a well finished square stone house, about 15 
yards in length, with wide boarded floor piazza, both in back and 
front. These afford excellent accommodation during the sum- 
mer season, which continues much longer, and in general is mucli 
warmer here than in England; as, in these piazzas, they fre- 
quently take tea and spend their evenings. Besides the dwelling 
house, there is an excellent kitchen, and offices adjoining; with 
a large barn, and stables sufficient to accommodate 40 horses 
and cows ; all well built of stone. [This last remark presumably 
refers to the buildings, not the animals !] The estate extends 
the whole breadth betwixt the Schuylkill and Perkiomen. On 
the former river there is a Shad Fishery which is of considerable 
value; and if prosecuted with spirit might supply many families 
with fish for the whole year. 

In the year following his first visit, Sutcliff, again 
staying at Vaux Hill— or perchance it may have already 
been renamed Fatland — fairly brimful of admiration, en- 
ters in his diary 

the 13th of 5th month, 1805, was spent at my relation's, W. B. 
[William Bakewell, then the master of the estate]. Our time 



passed on very agreeably in traversing his plantation, or farm, 
on the Banks of the Schuylkill and Perkioming [sic]. The more 
I see of it, the more I am convinced that it is one of the most 
beautiful and healthful situations I have known, either in America 
or England. The ground rising till it becomes elevated high 
above the banks of the rivers, commands a prospect as delight- 
ful as can well be conceived. A view of some of our Noblemen's 
Parks, on the more extensive scale, may give a faint idea of the 
prospect here seen; for even with such it is comparing small 
things with great ones, or putting art in competition with nature. 

Well might Robert Siitcliff regard with keen pleasure 
the beauty of the country round Fatland in May — his for- 
mer visit was in August — when fresh burgeoned nature is 
aglow with the radiance of youth and the tender, trans- 
parent greens of the half-gro^vn leaves, with the sunlight 
glinting through the branches, make an almost ethereal 
background for the masses of blossoms that dazzle the 
eye and flood the air with fragrance. In SutcliiF's day 
the river view from Fatland and the outlook over the sur- 
rounding country, that caused him such genuine delight 
and drew forth such flattering comparisons with the great 
seats in England, were more open and extensive than now 
when the trees around the house have attained a far better 
growth. The great sycamores, planted by James Vaux, 
that now cast their ample shade around the walls were 
then mere saplings compared to their present dimensions. 

With the coming of the Schuylkill canal and dams the 
shad fishery that so impressed the Quaker traveller with 
its possibilities disappeared, as did, also, Fatland Ford 
leading to Valley Forge, across which General Sullivan 
was deputed by Washington to construct a pontoon 



bridge. Over this, at the ev^aciiation of Valley Forge in 
1778, tlie army was conducted, thence passing up the lane 
near the house. This crossing of the Schuylkill on the 
j)oiitoon bridge is commemorated by a small monument 
by the river bank. 

James Vaux being a Friend and wishing well to all 
men, made no distinction in his treatment of the contend- 
ing parties — though his sympathies were with the patriot 
cause, and he afterward trained with the militia — and left 
liis house open to all. This was a general practice among 
Quakers during the Revolution and in this connexion 
SutclifF naively remarks that " this proved the best policy; 
for though attended Avitli some loss of provisions at the 
time, yet they were generally preserved from any serious 
suffering in their persons, by their hospitable conduct." 
James Vaux's case, however, was an exception to this gen- 
eral inmnmity from serious loss. The British Army in 
September, 1777, passing from Valley Forge to the north 
bank of the Schuylkill by the ford at that place and, not 
many months later, the American forces evacuating Valley 
Forge and crossing by the same ford, both swarmed over 
the Vaux Hill plantation like devastating clouds of locusts 
and wrought such havoc, tearing down fences, destroy- 
ing trees, and doing thousands of pounds' worth of dam- 
age in various ways, that Mr. Vaux's estate was seriously 
embarrassed in consequence. 

After the battle of Brandy wine the Continental Army 
retreated to Pottstown, then called Pottsgrove, while the 
British Army lay partly at Valley Forge and partly near 
JMoore Hall. Washington, wishing to make a reconnais- 
sance of the position of the British troops, rode do^vn the 



north bank of the Schuvlkill and on the afternoon of 
September 21 came to the house of James Vaux whence 
he had an excellent view of the forces of his antagonist 
on the opposite bank. The Commander-in-Chief supped 
at Vaux Hill, stayed over night and departed after break- 
fast the next morning. 

On the afternoon of that same day, September 22, 
Sir William Howe crossed the river, supped at Vaux Hill, 
stopped over night, probably slept in the same bed Wash- 
ington had occupied and left after breakfast on the 23d. 
On arriving he remarked to his host that, from what he 
had been able to see with his spyglass, there must have 
been some distinguished officer of the rebel army stopping 
at the house the night before. Being told that it was 
Washington himself he exclaimed in vexation, " Oh, I wish 
I had only known that, and I would have tried to catch 
him!" This is another of Howe's long list of "might 
haves." The incident was trifling but on it depended the 
whole future of the American cause, for the hope of suc- 
cess undoubtedly rested almost entirely upon Washing- 
ton's life. 

We have no portrait of James Vaux and we are en- 
tirely dependent upon verbal descriptions of this quiet, 
dignified Quaker gentleman who to the last wore the 
primitive Quaker garb of drab-coloured knee-breeches and 
a very long coat, a high hat, and shoes of extraordinary 
pattern. He was deeply respected and trusted by all who 
knew him, and sat in the first legislature of Pennsylvania 
after the close of the war. 

In 1804, William Bakewell, formerly of London, in- 
tending to make his future home in America, purchased 

13 193 


Fatlaiul, considering this seat offered the greatest attrac- 
tions of any place he had seen in America after travelling 
from Connecticut to North Carolina. JNIr. Bakewell was 
one of the sheriffs of London during the reign of George 
III, and the immediate cause of his coming to America 
calls to mind an interesting incident in the history of the 
period. A number of the Spectator appeared one day 
with some pointed strictures upon an indiscretion com- 
mitted by the Queen. By royal order the whole issue 
was at once suppressed. The affair created a furore and 
great indignation was expressed at the King's arbitrary 
action in trampling on the rights of freedom of speech. 
Bakewell in several ways indicated his sympathy with the 
incensed public and this so angered the King that he de- 
prived him of his shrievalty. Smarting with resentment 
at this royal reprimand Bakewell determined to leave 
England and settle in America. 

In January, 1804, he took up his residence at Fatland 
with his wife and children, intending thenceforth to lead 
the life of a country gentleman and devote himself to his 
studies and farming. Mrs. Bakewell did not long survive 
the change. Longing for her English home and pining 
away with homesickness, she died in September of the same 
year and was buried in the adjoining woods, where her 
husband erected a headstone with a beautiful poetical 
memorial. Lucy Bakewell, her mother's namesake, there- 
after presided over the household for her father and 
brothers until the great ornithologist, Audubon, carried 
her away as his bride. 

The circumstances of their meeting are not without a 
touch of romance. At the time when Audubon, newly 



come to America, established himself at Mill Grove Farm, 
the adjoining estate to Fatland, it chanced that England 
and France were engaged in hostilities. As Mr. Bake- 
well was English, Audubon hated him ipso facto and 
studiously avoided meeting him. The farmer at Mill 
Grove tried to dissuade him from this course, telling him 
how estimable a gentleman Mr. Bakewell was, but with- 
out avail. At last, one day, Audubon while out hunting 
accidentally fell in with Mr. Bakewell, who was a keen 
sportsman, and, without knowing who he was, engaged in 
conversation with him. When at length the identity of 
each became known to the other the ice had been broken 
and it was not long before Audubon accepted Mr. Bake- 
well's courteous invitation to call at Fatland. 

On his first going there Mr. Bakewell was from home, 
but Miss Lucy did the honours so delightfully until her 
father returned that it was not long before the naturalist 
repeated this visit. He also found Mr. Bakewell a con- 
genial spirit interested in scientific and literary pursuits. 
The intimacy between Fatland and Mill Grove soon be- 
came firmly established and reached its logical culmination 
when Miss Lucy consented, with her father's approval, to 
become Madame Audubon. 

In 1825, Fatland passed by purchase to a branch of 
the Wetherill family and has remained in their possession 
ever since. Samuel Wetherill, the purchaser of the es- 
tate, lived at Fatland till his death in 1829, and his widow 
continued there for a number of years after. In 1832 she 
built the Union Church, not far distant and although, at 
that time, she had joined the Episcopal Church, neverthe- 
less, out of regard for her husband, who had been an active 



member of the Free Quaker Society, she saw to it that 
the edifice, as far as practicable, should resemble a Quaker 
meeting house in both its inside and outside appearance. 

On the side opposite the door is an old-fashioned three- 
deck pulpit flanked on either hand by an unusually high 
balustrade with tall and narrow spindles. A former rec- 
tor, a man of commanding physique and stature, none too 
large for his pulpit, however, being absent on one occa- 
sion, his place was supplied by a worthy but small 
and excessively pompous brother-clerg5''man weighed 
down by the sense of his o^vn dignity. Before the service, 
the sexton, taking the measure of the reverend gentleman's 
inches, thoughtfully suggested placing a box in the pul- 
pit for him to stand on, but this offer the small ecclesiastic 
indignantly resented. When sermon time came he sailed 
majestically up to the appointed place, but alas, the top 
of his head barely reached the desk. It was manifestly 
impossible to roar forth his exhortation imseeing and un- 
seen, so he stepped to one side, peered through the balus- 
trade, grasping a spindle in each hand and, looking in 
his full-flowing surplice for all the world like a polar bear 
behind the bars of a cage, announced his text, " It is I, 
be not afraid." The congregation was convulsed. 

About 1845, after Mrs. Wetherill's death, in the set- 
tlement of the estate, Fatland came to her son, the late 
Doctor William Wetherill. Owing to the decayed con- 
dition of the house, Doctor Wetherill tore it down to the 
ground and on the same foundations built the present 
structure in a somewhat more elaborate style, though pre- 
serving, from motives of sentiment, substantially the lines 
of the original building. In front and in the back, six 


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great Ionic columns support the lofty roof of the portico 
that extends across the main portion of the house. At 
one side a long wing is taken up by the dining-room, the 
breakfast-room and the pantries, while in the basement 
are the kitchens and various offices. On the second floor 
of the wing are ample provisions for the nurseries and 
for the quarters of the house servants. The interior 
adornment of the house, which was at that time said to 
be the handsomest in Pennsylvania, was most elaborate. 
Delicately carved marble mantelpieces were cause for 
proper pride. The walls were hung with paper brought 
from France and along the halls and opposite the nur- 
series was a full portrayal in colours of Polonius giving 
advice to his son. 

The dining-room is of truly generous proportions, and 
had need to be for the lavish entertaining that was done 
there. It was no unusual thing for fifty people to sit 
down to dinner and on the occasion of Doctor WetherilFs 
birthday parties in February sometimes as many as eighty 
guests would take their places at the table. Open-handed 
hospitality was ever the rule at Fatland and was not con- 
fined exclusively to the personal friends and acquaint- 
ances of the owner. When the Wetherill Blues, a mili- 
tary body named in honour of Doctor Wetherill who had 
organised it, were mustered out after the Civil War they 
were so unstintedly feted at Fatland that for two weeks 
echoes of good cheer were ringing through the countryside. 
Not very far from the house, at the edge of the woods, 
are the Bakewell graves — Mr. Bakewell though buried at 
first in Philadelphia was afterward laid beside his wife — 



and aroiiiul tliem are the graves of the Free Quakers 
whose bodies were removed thither — when the burying 
Lrround on Fifth Street near Locust was devoted to other 
purposes — and phiced in a plot designated for that i^ur- 
pose by Colonel John Wetherill to whom the estate passed 
in 1872 upon the death of his father Doctor Wetherill. 
Fatland has been in its day one of the most noted and 
notable seats in the region about Philadelphia and even 
now after many years of tenancy by only caretakers, the 
present o\mer not electing to live there, it has preserved 
its stately charm and grace and only needs trifling re- 
pairs and the gardener's pruning knife and grubbing hoe 
to place it once more among the foremost plantations of 
the day. 



C3^<5=^^^¥''^^ 5\'^:^\ ^'^ ^ stone's throw from Fatland's 
\f^B^m^W^^ S^^^ along the road from Pawling's 

Bridge, is the lane turning into Mill 
Grove, a place filled with memories 
of Audubon and sacred to all bird- 
lovers and naturalists. A short drive 
down this lane brings us to the house 
perched on the western slope of a steep hill overhanging 
the Perkiomen, which sweeps by at the foot of the de- 
clivity. Beyond the creek, broad meadows open out, while 
the hither bank grows more and more precipitous with a 
dense wood hanging at its summit. 

Mill Grove House, built foursquare of native, tawny, 
rough-hewn stone, a good plain farmhouse of massive 
masonry without architectural pretensions, is just such 
as a sturdy yeoman might be expected to build in the 
midst of his fields. A thick mantling of English ivy 
clings to the walls and knits the fabric to surrounding 
nature. Through the midst of the house runs a hall on 
each side of which there are two large rooms. The same 
arrangement is repeated abovestairs and again in the 

Since William Penn's original grant of this tract in 
1699, the land has had many owners, including Colonel 
Edward Farmer of White Marsh, the Morrises and 
Lewises, and at one time Governour John Penn and his 
wife. In 1762, a year of unusual building activity in 



Colonial annals, James ^Morgan of Durham Furnace con- 
nexion in Pucks, built the house, as a date stone in the 
ai)ex of the gable attests, and in 1765 added the small 
kitchen wing at one end. His brother, Thomas Morgan, 
for a season conducted the house as a hostelry. In 1771 
Rowland Evans, James ISIorgan's partner in the mill in- 
terests, from which the place took its name, bought the 
property and sold it five years later to Governour John 
Penn. From Penn and his wife it passed through sev- 
eral hands until Augustin Prevost sold it in 1789 to John 
Audubon [the admiral] father of John James LaForest 
Audubon, the ornithologist, who gave Mill Grove name 
and fame. 

Sent from San Domingo or Louisiana to France to be 
educated for the navy that he might follow his father's 
footsteps, young Audubon showed himself singularly un- 
fitted by disposition and talents for that profession, and 
it became quite plain that his bent lay wholly in the di- 
rection of art and natural history. After a course of edu- 
cation in which he seems to have profited chiefly by his 
instruction in music and drawing, his father, seeing that 
it was useless to press the naval calling, permitted him to 
come and live at his Mill Grove farm where he was free 
to indulge to the full his passion for outdoor life. 

Thither, then, he came about 1797 and roamed the 
fields and woods, gun in hand, in search of specimens, 
drew, rode horseback or played his fiddle — he was a pro- 
ficient musician — as fancy dictated. Besides his devo- 
tion to drawing and bird studies, he had a passion for 


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Built by Thomas Armatt, 1801 


Tlic first hoiiii' of Auilulidn in Ami-rica 


fine horses and fine clothes and, as he had ample means 
at his disposal, he led a happy, care-free existence and 
gratified his tastes to his heart's content. There is not 
a foot of ground for miles around that he did not wander 
over in his quest for birds or on his shooting expeditions. 
His extravagant fondness for gay clothing led him to 
roam the fields arrayed in pumps, silk stockings, satin 
breeches, embroidered waistcoats, and belaced and be- 
ruffled shirts — all the male finery then in vogue — and one 
involuntarily smiles to think what a sorry bedraggled 
spectacle he must often have presented after an early 
morning ramble through the dank, dew-laden Perkiomen 

The story of his meeting his neighbours, the Bake- 
wells, and of his courtship of Miss Lucy, has been told in 
the account of Fatland. These were the happiest years 
of his life, before the shadows of adversity and financial 
anxiety had darkened his path. 

About 1805 or 1806 he was again in France studying 
under the artist David. Returning to America he mar- 
ried Lucy Bakewell in April, 1808. Meanwhile, compli- 
cations had arisen through an unworthy business associate 
whom his father had sent over to assist in developing the 
lead mine on the property. The outcome of it all was 
that Audubon and his bride went to Kentucky, INIill 
Grove was sold to the former agent and associate, 
Da Costa, who formed a lead-mining company of whicli 
Stephen Girard was one of the stockholders. After a 
short time the lead mine was abandoned and the property 



In 1813 Mill Grove came into the possession of the 
^Vctherill family and with the exception of a period of 
fifteen years, during which it was in other hands, has re- 
mained there ever since. The present owner, JNIr. 
William ITenrv Wetherill, who has the estate for a coim- 
tryseat, courteously welcomes all Audubon pilgrims — 
and they are legion — who come to see the one-time home 
of the great ornithologist. 



TENTON was one of the earliest 
and most pretentious of the coun- 
tryseats of the Philadelphia neigh- 
bourhood. The estate originally 
comprised five hundred acres, but 
is now a park of some six acres sur- 
rounded by rows of the little brick 
homes for which Philadelphia is widely famous. It is 
the connecting link between Niceto^vn and German- 
town and is near the Wayne Junction station of the Phila- 
delphia & Reading Railway. The Wingohocking Creek 
once ran through the grounds but is now conducted be- 
neath the surface. Fine oaks, hemlocks, and pines re- 
main about the house but an avenue of sycamores has gone. 
The house is built of brick with black headers and is 
fifty-five by forty-two feet in dimensions with a separate 
range of servant quarters, kitchens, and greenhouses ex- 
tending backward one hundred and ten feet farther. The 
doorway is reached by three curious circular stone steps 
firmly clamped together with iron bands. It opens into a 
great hall, paved with brick and wainscotted in white to the 
ceiling, with an open fireplace on the right. On the left 
is a dining-room, also wainscotted, ^vith a cupboard for 
china. The fireplace in this room has blue tiles and an 
iron fireback ornamented with the initials of the builder, 
" J. L. 1728." On the right is the south parlour, also 
panelled, with a fireplace surrounded by pink tiles. A 
stately double staircase ascends beyond an archway in 



the rear, on either side of which there are lofty rooms also 
wainscotted in white. The one on the left is a small 
breakfast-room reached from the front dining-room 
through a passageway. Upon the threshold there is a 
trapdoor in tlie iloor leading to an underground passage to 
the barns and burying ground, a great convenience in 
times of stress or storm. In the hallway stands an iron 
chest to hold the silver, with fourteen tumblers to the 
lock, and over it are the wooden pegs for hats. In the 
rear room on the right is a large closet with a sliding top, 
where a person might be concealed to listen through a 
small opening to conversation in the hall. The most at- 
tractive room is the library on the second floor, which ex- 
tends across the whole front of the house. This once con- 
tained the flnest collection of books of any private library 
in Colonial America, presented by the collector, James 
Logan, to the city of Philadelphia. Here the illustrious 
book-loving statesman and scholar spent most of his time 
during his declining years. There are two fireplaces, one 
with blue tiles and the other with white. There is a little 
back stairway and two small back bedrooms for his two 
daughters. Each room has a fireplace. On the third floor 
there is no paint on the wainscot or woodwork and there is 
a little door under the eaves opening into a small passage- 
way to the next room. In fact the whole house is filled with 
quaint nooks and corners which are the subjects of many 
a strange legend. On the back of a door on the third floor 
is cut, " Willm. Logan jun. wSail'd for England Octobr. 
Ttli. 1703 Aetat : 1-6-7" The copper boiler, the bake 
oven, the big fireplace, and the crane are still to be seen 
in tlie kitchen, as well as the dovecote on its exterior. 


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James Logan was born October 20, 1674, at Lurgan, 
County Armagh, Ireland. He was the son of Patrick 
Logan of East Lothian, Scotland, and Isabella Hume. 
He was the descendant of a long line of the flower of 
Scottish chivalry, scholars, and gentlemen, Chief Logan 
being the Laird or Baron of Restalrig, earlier called 
Lestalric. Patrick Logan was graduated Master of Arts 
at Edinburgh University, was a clergyman of the estab- 
lished church of Scotland and chaplain to Lord Belhaven. 
In 1671 he sought refuge from the turmoil by removing 
to Ireland and joining the Society of Friends. He took 
charge of the Latin School at Lurgan and here James 
Logan learned Latin, Greek, and Hebrew before he was 
thirteen years of age, and became a master of mathe- 
matics at sixteen. James later removed to London where 
he was, for a while, a schoolmaster, but soon entered the 
shipping trade at that place and at Bristol. In the 
spring of 1699, William Penn engaged him as his secre- 
tary and together they came to America in the Canter- 
bury. On Penn's departure for England he left him in 
charge of the Province, saying, " I have left thee an un- 
common trust, with a singular dependence on thy justice 
and care." 

An account of James Logan's life is an account of 
Pennsylvania. For half a century he was a most potent 
factor in the Provincial affairs and was the centre of the 
volcanic disturbances which affected the Colony. Faith- 
ful to the Penn family and loyal to the desires of the 
Founder, he managed Indian affairs with great skill and 
it was largely due to him that the friendship) and alliance 



between them and the Province was so long maintained. 
His correspondence was much with the literati of Europe 
and often embraced Hebrew or Arabic characters and 
algebraic formulas. Sometimes his letters convey a lively 
Greek ode and often they were written in Latin. He 
published essays on reproduction in plants, aberration 
of light, translated Cicero's " De Senectute," Cato's 
" Uisticha," and treatises on history, arch^Eology, criticism, 
theology, ethics, natural philosophy, anatomy, and law. 
There was no topic of science or literature that he could 
not discuss with the scholars of his time. He is described 
as tall and well made, with a graceful yet grave de- 
meanour, a good complexion, quite florid even in his old 
age. His hair was brown and never grey, but he wore a 
powdered wig. He was intolerant of the narrow distinc- 
tion of some Friends and believed in a defensive war of 
resistance to aggression. Thus he supported Franklin 
for the protection of Philadelphia in the French Wars. 
He engaged in business with Edward Shippen, but his 
trade or his public service never led him from his aiFection 
for the muses. He was Chief-Justice, Provincial Secre- 
tary, Commissioner of Property, and President of the 
Council. He acquired a fortune in commerce, in trade 
with the Indians, and by the purchase and sale of de- 
sirable tracts of land in all parts of the Colony which his 
position of Surveyor-General gave him the opportunity 
of securing. Thus he was able to live in princely style 
and to entertain with a free hand. For more than a cen- 
tury Stenton was the resort of notable and distinguished 
persons of the Colonies and from abroad, and its mis- 



tresses were among the most accomplished women of the 
time. Among the visitors to the house were John Dick- 
inson, Edward Shippen, John Randolph of Roanoke, 
Thomas Pickering, the learned and witty Portuguese, 
Abbe Correa, the French minister Genet, Doctor Benja- 
min Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, Richard Peters, and 
President Washington. At Stenton, Thomas Godfrey, 
glazier, by accident discovered the principle upon which 
he invented the quadrant. He saw a piece of broken glass 
which had fallen so as to reflect the sun, and upon con- 
sulting a volume of Newton which he found in the library, 
and with advice from James Logan, he constructed an in- 
strument according to the plan in his mind. 

James Logan was a suitor for the hand of the beauti- 
ful Anne Shippen, Edward Shippen's daughter, who 
married Thomas Story, and there sprung up a bitter ri- 
valry between the colleagues in the board of property, 
which troubled the Founder very much. On the sixteenth 
of the eleventh month Penn wrote to Logan: 

I am anxiously grieved for thy unhappy love for thy sake 
and my own, for T. S., and thy discord has been for no service 
here any more than there; and some say that come thence that 
thy amours have so altered or influenced thee that thou art 
grown touchy and apt to give rough and short answers, which 
many call haughty. I make no judgement, but caution thee, as 
in former letters, to let truth preside and bear impertinence 
as patiently as thou canst. 

After the marriage of Anne Shippen and Thomas 
Story, he wrote Penn, August 12, 1706: 



Thonms Story carries very well since his marriage. He and 
I are great friends, for I tliink the whole business is not now 
worth a quarrel. 

On the ninth of the tenth month, 1714, he married 
Sarah, daughter of Charles and Amy Read, after a ro- 
mantic courtship. His letters to her are very tender and 
full of spiritual power. To them were born seven chil- 
dren: Sarah, who married Isaac Norris of Fairhill and 
whose daughter Mary married John Dickinson; William, 
who married Hannah Emlen and succeeded to Stenton; 
Hannah, who married John Smith, and James, who mar- 
ried Sarah Armitt. The rest died without issue. 

Perhaps the first and most numerous guests at Sten- 
ton were the Indians, who came very often and in great 
numbers, three or four hundred at a time, and stayed 
for several weeks. They lined the staircase at night and 
passed the days in the maple grove. Smaller bands made 
huts on the grounds and remained a year at a time. The 
good chief, Wingohocking, standing with Logan on the 
border of the beautiful stream that wound through the 
place, proposed a change of names after the Indian cus- 
tom of brotherhood. Logan explained the difficulty to 
him and said: 

Do tliou, chief, take mine, and give thine to this stream which 
passes through my fields, and when I am passed away and while 
the earth shall endure it shall flow and bear thy name. 

Hannah I^ogan, the youngest of the two daughters 
of James Logan, was named after Hannah Penn; Sarah, 
of whom the fatlicr wTites in 172-1 to Thomas Story in 
Kngland, was an elder sister. 


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Sally, besides her needle, has been learning French, and this 
last week, has been very busy in the dairy at the plantation, in 
which she delights as well as in spinning; but is this moment at 
the table with me (being first-day afternoon and her mother 
abroad), reading the 34th. Psalm in Hebrew, the letters of which 
she learned very perfectly in less than two hours* time, an ex- 
periment I made of her capacity only for my diversion though, I 
never design to give her that or any other learned language, un- 
less the French be accounted such. 

An interesting comment on female education at the 
time and housewifely employments! 

Speaking of Hannah Logan, William Black, the young 
Virginian secretary of the Indian Commission en route 
to make a treaty with the Iroquois at Lancaster, writes 
in 1744: 

I was really very much surprised at the Appearance of so 
Charming a Woman, at a place where the seeming moroseness 
and Goutified Father's Appearance Promised no such Beauty, 
tho' it must be allow'd the Man seem'd to have some Remains 
of a handsome enough Person, and a Complexion beyond his 
years, for he was turned off 70: But to return to the Lady, I 
declare I burnt my Lips more than once, being quite thoughtless 
of the warmness of my Tea, entirely lost in Contemplating her 
Beauties. She was tall and Slender, but Exactly well Shap'd, her 
Features Perfect, and Complexion tho' a little the whitest, yet 
her Countenance had something in it extremely Sweet. Her 
Eyes Express'd a very great Softness, denoting a Compos'd Tem- 
per and Serenity of Mind, Her Manner was Grave and Reserved 
and to be short she had a Sort of Majesty in her Person, and 
Agreeableness in her Behaviour,' which at once surprised and 
Charmed the Beholders : 

14 209 


Katlier a remarkable description of a demure Quak- 
eress from a Virginia Cavalier! 

James Logan died October 31, 1751, and was buried 
in the Friends' burying ground at Fourth and Arch 
Streets. He was succeeded at Stenton by his son 
William, who had married Hannah Emlen. William 
Logan had been educated by his father and in England. 
He was the friend of the Proprietary interests and of 
the Indians, giving them homes and educating their chil- 
dren. He executed the conveyance of the Loganian 
Library to the Library Company of Philadelphia accord- 
ing to his father's wish. 

The next proprietor at Stenton was William Logan's 
son George, who was born there in 1753. He was edu- 
cated in England and took a degree in medicine at Edin- 
burgh University, travelling extensively in France, Italy, 
Germany, and Holland. He married Deborah, daughter 
of Charles Norris of Fairhill, a charming lady of very wide 
acquaintance whose hospitality was shared by most of the 
distinguished foreigners who visited Philadelphia during 
her occupancy at Stenton. She was something of a 
poetess and thus describes her home in a sonnet: 

My peaceful home ! amidst wliose dark green shades 
And sylvan scenes my waning life is spent, 
Nor without blessings and desired content ! 
Again the spring illumes thy verdant glades 
And rose-crowned Flora calls Oeonian maids 
To grace with song her revels, and prevent, 
By charmed spells, the nipping blasts which, bent 
From Eurus or the stormy North, pervades 
Her treasures, — still 'tis mine among thy groves 



Musing to roam, enamour'd of the fame 

Of him who reared these walls whose classic lore 

For science brightly played, and left his name 

Indelible — by honour, too, approved, 

And Virtue cherished by the Muses' flame. 

General Washington made Stenton his headquarters 
August 23, 1777, on his way to the Brandywine from 
Hartsville, Pa. He came with twenty officers of his staff 
and is described as very silent and grave upon this oc- 
casion. Later, as President of the Constitutional Con- 
vention sitting in Philadelphia, on Sunday, July 8, 1787, 
he rode out to Stenton with Major Daniel Jenifer to see 
Doctor George Logan for the purpose of looking over 
some farm experiments. He was interested in a demon- 
stration of the use of land plaster on grass land, which 
Doctor Logan illustrated by marking out initials in the 
sod. Where the plaster had been sown on these letters 
the grass was darker and more luxuriant than elsewhere. 

On Saturday, November 22, 1777, Sir William Howe 
gave orders to destroy the houses of obnoxious persons, 
and by order of Colonel Twistleton two dragoons came to 
Stenton to fire it. They told the negi'o woman whom 
they encountered there that she could remove the bedding 
and clothing while they went to the stable for straw. An 
officer with his command hapj^ened to come at the time and 
enquired for deserters. The vigilant and faithful negress 
told him that two were in the barn, so he carried them away 
and the house was saved. Sir William Howe had occu- 
pied it as his headquarters at the time of the battle of 



Doctor George Logan was an active member of the 
Agricultural and Philosophical Societies, a senator from 
Pennsylvania from 1801 to 1807, and was much concerned 
to preserve peace. Upon this concern he visited France 
in 1798 and F^ngland in 1810. On his death in 1821 Du 
Ponceau said of him: 

And art thou too gone ! friend of man ! friend of peace ! friend 
of science ! Tliou whose persuasive accents could still the angry 
passions of rulers of men, and dispose their minds to listen to the 
voice of reason and justice. 

When Deborah Logan died in 1839, the estate came 
to her son Albanus who was born in 1783 and married 
John Dickinson's daughter Maria. Albanus was an agri- 
culturist and was devoted to field sports. He had a gen- 
tle nature and through a long protracted suffering before 
his death never complained. Two children graced his 
union with Maria Dickinson : Gustavus, who married Miss 
Armat of Loudoun, and John Dickinson Logan, who 
wedded Miss Susan Wister. Gustavus occupied the 
house and his children Albanus and IVIaria were born 
there. Since the occupancy by the Colonial Dames and 
the ownership by the city they have lived at Loudoun 

The history of the Logan family and of their life at 
this splendid Colonial mansion, while only one of many 
similar instances, is, perhaps, the most striking 2)roof of 
the incorrectness of a common modern idea regarding the 
Quakers. We see here that they were not stiff-necked 
ascetics, but were cultured and refined, fond of beauty 



and pleasant things, and of a lavish hospitality. Their 
portraits which adorn the walls of Stenton are witnesses 
to all that has been said about them and exhibit the dress, 
not of a peculiar people, but of those who practised mod- 
eration according to the admonition of William Penn : 

Choose thy cloaths by thine own eyes, not anothers. The 
more simple and plain they are, the better. Neither unshapely 
nor fantastical, and for use and decency, not for pride. 




^^^^^OUDOUN is an irregular stone plas- 
tered house with a pillared portico 
and stands at the summit of Neglee's 
Hill just above Wayne Junction 
station of the Philadelphia & Read- 
ing Railway. The east side of the 
"^ house is the older; the portico was 
added about 1830. In the original distribution of 
the land of the Frankfort Company, owners of what is 
now Germantown, the property was called Side Lot 
Number 2, and fell by the lottery held in the cave of 
Francis Daniel Pastorius, about where Chestnut Street 
wharf now is, to Thones Kunders. It was in the house of 
Thones, now numbered 5109 Main Street, only a portion 
of whose wall remains, that the first meeting of Friends 
was held in Germantown. 

Loudoun was built in 1801 by Thomas Armat, the 
youngest son of a large family at Dale-Head Hall, Cum- 
berland County, England. He settled first in Loudoun 
County, Virginia, and thus gave its name to the country- 
seat which he built in Germantown for his son Thomas 
Wright Armat, who was born in the first home. The 
Armats came to Philadelphia about the time of the Revo- 
hition and during the yellow-fever epidemic in 1793 moved 
to Germantown, residing at 4788 IMain Street, afterward 
occupied by the Ashmead family. 

Mr. Armat was a merchant in Philadelphia and a dis- 
tinguished philanthropist. He contributed the ground 



on which St. Luke's Church, Germantown, now stands and 
aided in the erection of the building. There was a cham- 
ber in his home at Loudoun called the Minister's Room 
set aside for the incumbent of the parish. He was among 
the first to suggest coal for heating and patented a hay 
scales. From 1820 to 1835 Loudoun was rented bv 
Madame Greland as a school for young ladies whom she 
brought there for the summer. The hill was a hospital 
after the battle of Germantown and many dead were 
buried in the grounds. 

Mr. Armat's daughter married Gustavus Logan, son 
of Albanus and Maria Dickinson Logan, great-great- 
grandson of James Logan and grandson of John Dickin- 
son. The last was the most conspicuous person in the 
service of the State from 1760 until his term expired as 
President of the Supreme Executive Council of the State 
in 1783. From the meeting of the Stamp Act Congress 
in 1765 until his death in 1808, he was a prominent fig- 
ure in national history. He was the first to advocate re- 
sistance, on constitutional grounds, to the ministerial plan 
of taxation and for a long period after the enforcement 
of the Boston Port Bill he controlled the counsels of the 
country. He courageously maintained that the Declara- 
tion of Independence was inopportune but despite this, 
and the fact that he was a Friend, fought valiantly in the 
War of the Revolution. In the convention which framed 
the Constitution of the United States he took a leading 
part and prepared many memorable State papers at the 
request of the Continental Congress. 

He is, perhaps, best known for his " Farmer's Let- 



ters," addressed to tlie people of Great Britain, which em- 
bodied the Pennsylvania idea and brought about the re- 
peal of the Stamp Act, so well were they regarded abroad. 
He lived at Fairhill on the Germantown Road below the 
town and was the son of Samuel and INIary Cadwalader 
Dickinson, ^Maryland Quakers who lived at Crosia-dore 
on the eastern shore of Maryland. His training in the 
law was received with John Moland, Esquire, of Philadel- 
phia, and at the Middle Temple in London. 

Loudoun is now occupied by Albanus Logan and his 
sister, Miss ^laria Logan, son and daughter of Gustavus. 

It may be fairly said to mark the beginning of Ger- 
manto^vn, now the twenty-second ward of Philadelphia. 
At the foot of its lawn, the old ]Main Street begins its 
winding way toward Chestnut Hill. In early days the 
roadway was so bad that one gentleman is said to have sad- 
dled his horse in order to cross it. In later days came the 
railway tracks for the horse cars, solitary and infrequent, 
which came out from the city through the regions of Fair- 
hill ^Meeting (given to the Society of Friends by the 
founder, George Fox), Rising Sun Village, and Robert's 
^Meadow, climbed Neglee's Hill and jingled on through 
the toll-gate at Rittenhouse Street and so to the " horse- 
car depot " at " Carpenter's." 



H E name of Wister, whether 
spelled er or ar, is a familiar one to 
Philadelphians and particularly to 
those residing in Germantown. 
technically known as the twenty- 
second ward of Philadelphia. 

Hans Caspar and Anna Kate- 
rina Wiister dwelt at Hillspach, near Heidelberg in Ger- 
many. Of their children two sons came to Pennsylvania, 
the first being Caspar who arrived in Philadelphia by the 
ship William and Sarah, in September, 1717. The second 
son, Johann, reached the same port in May, 1727. Both 
brothers prospered and became the heads of important 
houses. In his oath of allegiance to the King in 1721, Cas- 
par had his name spelled " Wistar " through the mistake of 
the clerk and from hun are descended those who thus spell 
their names to-day. From him came the Doctor Caspar 
Wistar in commemoration of whom and of his charming 
entertainments were established the famous Wistar 
Parties at Fourth and Locust Streets which made the 
Saturday nights of Philadelphia so well and favourably 
known among visitors of the polite and cultivated classes 
from other cities and abroad. 

In May, 1727, shortly after the death of his father, 
the second son John embarked for America and after a 
long and stormy passage of four months arrived in Phila- 
delphia. He established himself in ^larket Street west 
of Third, where he cultivated blackberries, made and im- 



j)()rte(l wine, and had a large business. He was thrice 
married and there were four children by Salome Zimmer- 
man and five by Anna Catherina Kubinkam. In 1744 he 
built " Wister's Big House " opposite Indian Queen Lane 
and now numbered 5261 Main Street. The stone came 
from Cedar Hill near the east end of Bringhurst Street 
where it touches the Philadelphia & Reading Railway, 
and the woodwork from oak trees hewn in Wister's woods. 
It was the first country seat in Germantown, was two and 
a half storeys high with a high-pitched roof over a garret 
without dormers, lighted from the ends. Across the front 
and side of the house was a pent roof or projecting eaves 
marking the line of the second floor, with a balcony to 
break its imiformity over the main entrance, upon which 
opened a door from the second storey. There were two 
chimneys, stout and strong, at either end. The main en- 
trance was centrally placed, with two windows to the 
right, and a smaller door with a ^^^ndow bounding each 
side of it to the left. These doors were upper and lower 
parted, and looked out upon sidelong seats. In 1808 re- 
pairs and changes caused the pent roof to vanish, dormer 
windows to appear, the upper door and balcony to make 
way for a window as did the small door on the ground 
floor. The front seats and railing-guard as well as the 
locust trees that shaded them also passed away and the 
front of the house was pebble dashed. A long wing ex- 
tends eastward and in its shade is a well with stone steps 
leading to de])ths where the provisions were kept. Back 
of this is the workshop with its rows of tools and store 
of curiosities, not the least interesting of which are numer- 


ous clocks in various stages of completion. Still farther 
east is the observatory with its telescope and then the 
beautiful formal garden with its ancient markings of box- 
bush, out of which rises the old rain-gauge. 

The hallway is spacious, the rooms low ceilinged and 
the great fireplace in the kitchen still holds the crane and 
its pots. John Wister was a charitable man and caused 
bread to be baked every Saturday which he distributed to 
the poor who came to his door for it. 

His hospitality was shared by many famous person- 
ages. Adjoining him on the south was Christopher Sower, 
one of the most remarkable men in the Colonies. He 
was preacher, tailor, farmer, apothecary, surgeon, bot- 
anist, clock and watchmaker, bookbinder, optician, manu- 
facturer of paper, drew wire and lead, and made most of 
the materials for the books he printed. In 1739 he issued 
the first almanac and in 1743 the Bible was printed by 
him in German, forty years prior to its appearance here 
in English. He commenced his newspaper in 1739 and 
the printing business has been carried on by his descend- 
ants down to the present day. To Grumblethorpe also 
came Gilbert Stuart, the gifted, jovial artist. Squire 
Baynton, David Conyngham, Reuben Haines, " Ben " 
Shoemaker, Daniel and Jolm Jay Smith, Doctor George 
Bensel, physician and poet, Isaiah Lukens, a mathemati- 
cal expert, Thomas Say, the great entomologist and presi- 
dent of the Philadelphia Academy of Natural Sciences, 
Parker Cleveland, the writer of the first book upon Ameri- 
can mineralog}^ Doctor W. S. W. Ruschenberger, trav- 
eller and writer, Professor James Nichol, a celebrated 



geologist and writer, of Glasgow, Reverend Lewis David 
von Scliweinitz, fungologist, of Bethlehem, and many 
others illustrious in science, literature, and art. 

At the time of the battle of Germantown General 
Agnew of the British Army made his headquarters in 
the house and being brought wounded into the northwest 
parlour died there and stained the floor with his blood. 
The marks of the bloodstains are still to be seen. Major 
Lenox, who occupied the house in 1779, was married in 
this room under the ring in the centre as w^as also William 
Wister of Belfield. 

jNIajor Lenox was an Irishman by birth, said to be 
the brother of the Earl of JNIoira and a relative of Lord 
Fitzgerald of Kildare. His town houses were, at various 
times, Spruce near Second Street, Vine near Third, 
Arch below Ninth, 286 Chestnut, and at Tenth and Chest- 
nut Streets. The major was a member of tlie First City 
Troop in 1777, marshal of the United States for the Dis- 
trict of Pennsylvania, director of the LTnited States Bank 
and its president, succeeding Thomas Willing. He Avas 
also this country's rejDresentative at the Court of St. 
James and brought much handsome furniture home with 
him. While living at the Wister house in Germantown he 
was a participant in the relief of " Fort Wilson," at Third 
and Walnut Streets on October 4, 1779, and this so en- 
raged the turbulent soldiery that they aroused him from 
his slumbers a few nights afterward and to the number 
of about two hundred proceeded to assault the house. Lie 
secured it as best he could and harangued tliem from 
the front balcony. His cousin, a young lady staying at 



the house, fled on foot at midnight to the city and sum- 
moned the City Troop to his rescue. 

John Wister's eldest son, Daniel, succeeded to the 
property and became a prosperous merchant at 325 Mar- 
ket Street. He married Lowry Jones of Wynnewood 
and had ten children, of whom the light-hearted Sally 
AVister was one. During the British occupation, the fam- 
ily went to the Foulke place at Penllyn, and it was here 
that Sally wrote her charming Journal. Therein she re- 
lates an interesting story of the life-size British grena- 
dier which Major Andre painted as one of the decora- 
tions for the " Mischianza " and which stands in the hall- 
way at Grumblethorpe. The Foulke house was the re- 
sort of many American officers at the time, and one of 
these, young Major Tilly of Virginia, was a talkative, 
boastful fellow who constantly proclaimed his desire to 
meet the British in battle. To test his courage Daniel 
Wister, with the connivance of the other American offi- 
cers, had the grenadier placed outside the front door with 
a person behind it. A rap at the door and the officers 
started to their feet in evident alarm. Tilly led the way 
and when the door opened the faint glimmer of the lan- 
tern showed the figure which demanded in gruff tones, 
"Are there any rebel officers in this house?" Without 
stopping Tilly fled out of the back door and on towards 
Washington's camp. He had not gone far, however, be- 
fore he fell into the mill pond and was brought home in 
disgrace by his fellow-officers. It is related, that he took 
it with good grace and equanimity. The original manu- 
script of Sally Wister's Journal and a journal of her later 



years, a manuscript diary of John Kelpius the hermit of 
the Wissahickon, a crayon dra-vving of Peggy Chew by 
Andre, a wagstaff twenty-four-hour clock imported from 
London, a musical clock constructed by Isaiah Lukens, 
2)aintings of old Germantown by Charles J. Wister, Jr., 
the model of the original Wister house, an inscription 
" Headquarters of General Agnew," and much fine old 
furniture and rare books, are some of the treasures of the 
house distributed about in its rooms. 

Charles J. Wister was the son of Daniel and in his 
many travels had strange and humorous adventures 
through Pennsylvania and Virginia. He went daily to 
town on business until 1819 after which he led a retired 
life devoted to science. He was a botanist and mineralo- 
gist and lectured upon these subjects at the Germantown 
Academy, of whose Board of Trustees he was the secre- 
tary for thirty years. He built the observatory still 
standing and was a familiar figure in the old town among 
the group that gathered in the rear of Jabez Gates's store 
at Bringhurst Street or at the toll-house of Enos Springer 
at the corner of Rittenhouse. He it was who gave the 
name to the place in a spirit of jest but which has held on. 

Perhaps the most famous feature of Grumblethorpe 
is its garden developed to its greatest extent by Charles 
J. Wister. It covers an area of one hundred and 
eighty-eight by four hundred and fifty feet and is 
bounded on the east by a vegetable garden, the total 
length of the tract from the Main Street to Wakefield 
Street being nine hundred feet. It is a formal gar- 
den, having a central walk flanked by rectangular. 

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Built l)V Jaiii.-i Matlhcws, 1S03 

CMtrMHI.iniM'Kl'K, Nl'MHKK oiOl (iEIlM A \H >\\ \ 1{< lAP 
Miiill liv .T..lin WiOcr. \7H 


semi-circular, and angular beds, conforming to lines radi- 
ating from the central to two outlying bounding paths 
bordered with box. Famous old trees, arbours, colour, 
and brightness of bewildering variety crowd each other 
here and it is hard to realise that this rural gem is situated 
directly upon the principal business street and near the 
centre of modern Germantown. 

Charles J. Wister died July 23, 1865, in the eighty- 
fourth year of his age, and was succeeded by his son 
Charles J. Wister, Jr., an artist and writer who faith- 
fully treasured the trust of an honoured line. Through 
his writings have been preserved much that is interesting 
of old Germantown and through his tranquil sweet life 
the community has been greatly affected. His interest 
in the affairs of the town was active until his death in 
1910, when he was the president of the Site and Relic 
Society and of the Board of Trustees of the Germantown 
Academy, of which he had been a member for forty-two 
years. He died in the faith of his fathers and was laid 
away with them in the Friends' burying ground on Coulter 
Street. The property was shared by the nephews, Owen 
Wister, the novelist, and Alexander W. Wister, but they 
do not reside there, and Grumblethorpe is at present 



the west side of Main Street in 
Germantown running through to 
Greene Street stands Vernon in the 
midst of Vernon Park above Chelten 
Avenue. It was built in 1803 by 
James Matthews of the firm of Mc- 
Allister & JNIatthews, whipmakers. 
Therefore, it is not truly a Colonial Home, but is such a 
fine example of the architecture of that time and occupies 
such a distinguished position that it was thought worthy 
of notice. 

Vernon was purchased in 1812 by John Wister, the 
son of Daniel Wister, a member of the countinghouse of 
his uncle, William Wister, after whose death he continued 
the business with his brother Charles. John Wister was 
a distinguished Friend and his statue in bronze, repre- 
sented as clad in the dignified garb of the Society, has 
been placed before his house. His was a well-known and 
still remembered figure about Germantown where he died 
December 10, 1862. When the property passed into the 
hands of the city for a park some years ago the house 
was occupied by the Free Library, but since the erection 
of the adjacent building for this purpose it has been 
utilized as the home and the museum of the Site and Relic 
Society, where are displayed many relics and views of an- 
cient Germantown. 




1^ X no part of Philadelphia are so many 
stately and historic mansions so 
closely grouped together as in Ger- 
mantown. On two occasions when 
the first President of the United 
States and the members of his Cabi- 
net came hither for fear of the pesti- 
lence in the city, Germantown became, for the nonce, the 
Capital of the country. 

The house in which President Washington lived, the 
only one now standing, except of course Mount Vernon, 
which served as his home for any considerable time, 
is at 5442 Main Street. The heavy old panelled door 
flanked by rounded pillars with a moulded pediment atop 
is reached by a flight of three broad stone steps. A great 
iron latch on the inner side, along with the fastenings and 
brass knob are the same that Washington handled in his 
goings-out and comings-in. Two windows on each side 
of the doorway pierce the wall of evenly hewn grey Ger- 
mantown stone, while a range of five windows lights the 
second floor. A spacious hall, forty feet in depth, runs 
through the middle of the house and widens out back 
of the front rooms where a graceful stairway with land- 
ings ascends to the second floor. Opposite the stairway 
is the door to Washington's breakfast room whence the 
windows look out upon a charming garden, scrupulously 
kept in its pristine condition, whose box edges coeval with 

15 225 


the house, mark off the borders of old-fashioned flowers 
from the greenest of lawns. Rooms and halls are all 
panelled ^^^th white-painted woodwork up to a chair-rail, 
while above the fireplace in each room is an overmantel 
panel, nearlj^ five feet square, so cunningly fitted that no 
joints can be discerned — a very triumph of Colonial 
joiner3\ Facings of dark Pennsylvania marble surround 
the fireplaces. 

The house was built in 1772 by David Deschler, a son 
of an aide-de-camp to the reigning Prince of Baden and 
JSIargaret, a sister of Caspar Wistar and John Wister. 
This variation in spelling the surname of brothers is else- 
where explained. David Deschler was a West India 
merchant and had his countinghouse on the north side 
of Market Street west of Grindstone Alley. Like most 
of those who sent their ventures afloat for the wealth of 
the tropic seas, he prospered exceedingly and became one 
of the eminently substantial men of his day. As did many 
other laymen of that period, he dabbled somewhat in mat- 
ters medical and invented the salve that still bears liis 
name, a salve that Doctor Wistar thought sufficiently well 
of to include its recipe in his Pharmacopoeia. 

During the battle of Germantown, Sir William Howe 
had his headquarters at Stenton, but after the retreat of 
the Americans he moved out to Deschler's house and 
while there, it is said, he was visited by Prince William 
Henr}% a midshipman in the Royal Navy, afterward King 
William IV of England. 

Deschler was a striking figure in the old town. He 
had a handsome face and manly form which he adorned 


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with olive-coloured silk, velvet knee-breeches with buckles, 
silk stockings, bright silver-buckled shoes and topped it 
all off with the usual three-looped hat. He had a great 
appreciation of the beauties of nature and would have 
built his house wider than forty feet had it not been for 
a plum tree that he had not the heart to cut down. Along- 
side, to the south, is a beautiful garden one hundred feet 
wide and extending westward back of the house more than 
four hundred feet. 

Upon the death of David Deschler, in 1792, the prop- 
erty was sold to Colonel Isaac Franks, a New Yorker 
by birth, who had served with gallantry in the Continental 
Armv, and had received several wounds in the service. 
After the conclusion of peace ^nth Great Britain he 
filled various civil commissions, being appointed by Gov- 
ernour Mifflin in 1794 as lieutenant-colonel of the Second 
Regiment of Philadelphia County Brigade of ISIilitia and 
again in 1795 as justice of the peace in the district com- 
prising the townships of Germantown and Roxborough. 
Between 1803 and 1806 he moved to Ephrata, Lancaster 
County, where he appears in straitened circumstances, 
claiming in 1811 a sum owed him by the government for 
an " erroneous credit " given the United States while he 
was serving as forage master at West Point during the 
Revolution. He tried to secure an appointment in the 
Quartermaster's Department and a pension, the latter 
being granted in 1819. He died as prothonotary of the 
Supreme Court of Pennsylvania, at 55 Cherry Street, 
Philadelphia, March 4, 1822. 

During the yellow- fever epidemic of 1793, German- 



town's private houses and inns were filled to overflowing 
with refugees from the plague-stricken city. As the first 
Monday in December approached, the President became 
greatly concerned about the meeting place of the Con- 
gress. He Avas uncertain wiiether to assemble it elsewhere 
than in the city and wrote for an opinion to the members 
of his Cabinet and the officers of the govermnent, stating 
that " Time presses, and the malady, at the usual place of 
meeting, is becoming more and more alarming." On 
September 30, 1793, he writes from Mount Vernon to the 
attorney-general, Edmund Randolph, already removed to 

The continuation and spreading of the malignant fever, with 
which the city of Philadelphia is visited, together with the ab- 
sence of the heads of departments therefrom, will prolong my 
abode at this place until about the 25th. of October; at or about 
wliich time, I shall myself, if the then state of things should ren- 
der it improper for me to take my family, set out for that city, 
or the \'icinity, say Germantown. 

He then requests Randolph to secure lodgings for 
himself, servants and horses in or near Germantown, de- 
claring explicitly " that it is hired lodgings only I will go 
into; for unless such can be had, I would repair to one of 
the most decent inns." 

Randolph replies from Germantown, October 22: 

. . . I found that Major Franks had agreed to let you have 
liis liouse. But the terms are excessive; being no less than 150 
pounds per annum, or for a shorter period, not under six months, 
at the same rate. Except a looking glass or two, and a few 
pictures, he will not suffer any of the furniture to remain; tho' 
I liave prevailed upon his agent to permit a couple of beds and 



some chairs and tables to continue, until you can accommodate 
yourself from some other quarter. 

Fancy dictating such terms to the President of the 
United States! Colonel Franks fled to Bethlehem to 
avoid danger of the fever, and his agent not being will- 
ing to let the house for a period of less than six months, 
Randolph secured lodgings from the Reverend Frederick 
Herman, headmaster of the Germantown Academy, whose 
house was next the school buildings in School House 
Lane. Here the President remained from November 1 
to November 10, when he set out on a trip to Lancaster 
and Reading. Before leaving, however, he wrote a per- 
sonal note to Colonel Franks at Bethlehem asking for the 
use of his house. The colonel immediately responded by 
hiring a light two-horse wagon and setting out with Mrs. 
Franks, to put the house in order for the President's occu- 
pancy, which began upon his return on the sixteenth. It 
seems that the stipulation about the furniture must have 
been waived, for we find that Colonel Franks made a care- 
ful inventory of what the house contained at the time. 

It is perhaps the most interesting, authentic and com- 
plete list of the furnishings of a Colonial house in Penn- 
sylvania that we have and so is given in full : 

First Right Hand Room 
Curtains, 2 blinds, two winer blinds, Do. Do. curtains, one look- 
ing glass, six chairs with chintz bottoms, one looking glass, 1 Din- 
ing table, one breakfast table, one open stove, one pair of plated 
candlesticks, Double set of Nankin China 72 pieces, 1 large waiter, 
1 large waiter, 1 snufF tray, 1 pair hand irons, shovel and tongs, 
1 plated goblet pint cup with two handles, 2 large pictures. 



First Left Hand Room 
2 chintz window curtains, 1 Green Blinds, 1 Looking Glass, 
2 Gerandoles, 1 Dining table, 2 Mkhogany Ami Chairs, 8 Ma- 
hogany stuffed Bottom chairs, 1 pair large Hand Irons, shovel 
and tongs, 2 Gerandoles, 4 pictures, 1 pair plated candlesticks, 
1 set mantel china, — 82 Rails, 15 posts. 

In the back room adjoining 
One C. Table, 4 window chairs, 2 small pictures, China in 
the closet, 9 china plates, 2 plates sauce boats and china choco- 
late pot, 1 plated castor, 1 large Cliina Tureen, 1 china punch 
bowl, 1 china sugar dish, 1 pair of hand irons, shovel and tongs — 

In the First Kitchen 
1 EngHsh guttered gridiron, 3 flat brass candle sticks, 1 spit, 
1 flesh fork, 1 egg slice, 1 cullender, 3 iron ladles, 1 iron ladle and 
dredging box, 2 funnels, 2 graters, 1 pair of Snuff'ers, 1 qt. 
Tankard, 1 pint mug, 9 flat irons and stand, 1 cheese Toaster, 1 
iron fork large, 3 patty pans. 

Up Stairs, in the bed chamber on the right hand 
One bed stead and curtains, one bed bolster and pillows, 2 
blankets, a green rug and a white counterpane, 1 looking glass, 
1 Bureau, and cover, 1 pair hand irons, shovel and tongs, one 
carpet and fine side carpet. 

In Bed room opposite 
One Bed stead, 2 Beds, 1 Bolster and pillows, one pair sheets, 
one pair pillow sheets, 6 blankets, one chintz bed stead, 1 look- 
ing glass, 1 Table, 1 Arm chair, 4 chairs with covers, 1 carpet, 
1 mahogany chest and drawers, 1 Table, 1 chair, and 2 benches 
and one Tamil, a comer cupboard, one picture, one coff*ee mill, 
1 black pitcher, 3 coff'ee pots, 1 tin, 1 china, 1 large copper, 4 
Decanters, 9 Elegant Wine glasses, 6 cups and saucers, 1 Milk 



I)ot, 1 mustard pot, 1 slop bowl, 1 Tin Kettle with cover, 32 
plates, 4 large dishes, 2 gravy Tureens, 1 salt box, 1 salid dish. 

In Back Kitchen adjoining 

1 Tamil, 1 Table, 3 chafing dishes, 1 lantern, 2 frying pans, 
4 Iron pots and one iron cover, 2 chairs, 3 pails, 1 Table and 
ironing board, 2 Tea Kettles, 4 candlesticks, 2 copper Kettles, 
1 Tin Mug, 1 pepper mill, 2 pair of irons, 2 pair of pot hooks, 1 
sand sieve, 1 rolling pin, 1 pair of bellows, 2 pair of pot hooks, 
1 large copper sauce pan, 1 quart black mug, 1 bench, 1 brass 
washing kettle, 3 washing tubs. 

In Back Room 

2 chairs, 1 writing desk, &c., and Table. 

In Stable 
21/2 tons of hay, 1 cart, 1 open stove, 1 six plate stove, 27 
fowls, 20 ducks, one Iron fender. 

His account rendered for the use of the house included 
his expenses to and from Bethlehem for two trips, cost- 
ing $40.00, for bedding and furniture, $12.00, which he 
was compelled to hire in place of his own, $2.50 " For 
cleaning my house and putting it in the same condition 
the President received it in," and $4.40 for breakage. 
All of these charges, added to the rent of $66.66 made a 
total of $131.56 which seems to have been disputed, for 
the bill was not settled for nearly four months after- 
ward and then by a payment of $75.56. 

Here, then, met the Cabinet of the United States, 
Jefferson, Hamilton, Knox, and Randolph, to discuss 
many important matters. There was the President's 
speech and message to Congress to prepare, the trouble 



"vvitli France and with Citizen Genet to settle, many 
troubles with England and some with Spain to straighten 
out, the tliree mile limit of jurisdiction at sea to settle 
upon, the recommendation for the establishment of a mili- 
tary academy to consider, and many matters of internal 
government to decide. 

Fearing the return of the yellow fever, but with the 
ostensible object of escaping the heat of the city, Wash- 
ington arranged with Colonel Franks to take the house 
during the following summer for a period of about six 
weeks. There accompanied him on this occasion Mrs. 
Washington, and her two grandchildren, Eleanor Parke 
Custis and George Washington Parke Custis. Two loads 
of furniture were also sent out from Philadelphia, and on 
July 30 the family moved out. George W. P. Custis was 
enrolled as a student at the Germantown Academy and 
his attendance there is still treasured with the recollection 
of Washington's appearing at the school during that time. 

The President's family at this time conveniently wor- 
shipped in the German Reformed Church diagonally 
across the Market Square from the house, and Washing- 
ton became a familiar figure to the townspeople either on 
horseback, in his carriage, or talking freely with them. 
Mrs. Washington was remembered leaning out of the 
little window on the stair landing, talking to her neigh- 
bour, Mrs. Bringhurst, in the adjoining garden. The 
President was compelled to ride into town several times 
a week on account of the pressure of public business. 

They were in the house until September 20, when they 
moved back into the citv. Colonel Franks's bill for the 



rent of the house six weeks was $201.60. Washington, 
however, had left on the thirtieth of the preceding month 
on a journey to Carlisle to put down an insurrection 
among the people of Western Pennsylvania. He set out 
in his " single-seated phaeton drawn by four fine gray 
horses," accompanied by Alexander Hamilton, riding on 
horseback on his left, and his private secretary, Bartholo- 
mew Dandridge, riding on his right. They went out 
School House Lane and up the Township Line in order to 
escape a troop of cavalry drawn up to escort him through 
the village. 

In 1804 the property was purchased by Elliston and 
John Perot, two Frenchmen, who after several residences 
in America finally located in Philadelphia and did a large 
and extended business. Upon the death of Elliston Perot 
in 1834, it was purchased by his son-in-law, Samuel B. 
Morris, of the shipping firm of Wain & Morris. The 
present owner, Elliston Perot JNIorris, was a son of this 
marriage and came into the property at the death of his 
father in 1859. 

JNIr. Samuel B. Morris took much interest in the im- 
provement of the old JNIarket Square opposite the house. 
At the end farthest from the city stood an old-fashioned, 
brick pier, open markethouse, and by its side, surmounted 
by a little white spire, the Fellowship engine house, 
wherein was housed the wooden-wheeled hand-engine, 
brought from England and thought to have been built 
in 1734. Beside it stood a larger hand-engine of later 
date, and a bucket-wagon filled with leathern buckets and 
a small reel of hose. 


L^pon one corner of the square once stood the Dela- 
])hiinL' house, where Whitefield preached from the bal- 
cony in 1739 to five thousand people. On another stood 
the bank of the United States and on still another the 
house of Bronson Alcott where Louisa M. Alcott was 
born. William Penn preached in Jacob Tellner's house 
where the Saving's Fund Building now stands, and in 
the square originally stood the public scales, prison, and 
stocks, for even placid Germantown had its culprits for 
whom the strong arm of the law was needed. Delega- 
tions of Indians, stopping in Germanto>\Ti, were fed at 
the Market Square and here the Paxtang Boys stopped 
on February 6, 1764, and w^ere met by Benjamin Frank- 
lin, Benjamin Chew, Thomas Willing, and Joseph Gallo- 
way, who persuaded them to return to their homes with- 
out violence. Count Zinzendorf preached in the Ger- 
man Church where Washington worshipped and the 
Ninth Virginia were captured and confined there at the 
time of the battle. 

Samuel Morris planted grass and a row of trees along 
the curb, protecting them from injury by neatly painted 
wooden boxes. With the idea of stirring his wrath, some 
boys uprooted all the boxes with frantic yells one even- 
ing w^hile the family were at supper. Mr. Morris re- 
placed them the next day with the same result. Finally 
he hid behind one of the pillars of the markethouse and, 
catching the boys about to repeat their trick, appealed 
to them to care for the trees so that after he had passed 
away they could walk with their children imder the shade 
of the branches. This proved efficacious and the trees 
were left undisturbed. 



Of unusual beauty, the interior of the house remains 
unchanged and many relics of furniture, china, and sil- 
verware used by Colonel Franks and Washington are pre- 
served as well as the letter from the latter to Captain 
Samuel Morris conveying thanks for the valuable services 
of the First City Troop during the Revolution. It is in 
the original silver case with the likeness of Washington 
set in gold as presented by Captain Dunlap of the troop 
to his friend. Captain Morris. 

The aged Jesse Wain, of Frankford, visited the house 
during the childhood of Mr. Elliston P. Morris, the pres- 
ent occupant, and entering the tea-room in the south- 
western part sat lost in thought. At last he told Mr. 
Morris that, while at the Germantown Academy, he had 
accompanied his classmate, George Washington Parke 
Custis, to the house and had, upon Washington's invita- 
tion, stayed to tea in that room. 

Mr. Morris has interesting memories of the days when 
a horse car twice a day on the Philadelphia, Germantown 
& Norristown Railroad afforded the only public means 
of going to the city, except the four-horse onmibus, 
which started about nine o'clock in the morning for the 
old Rotterdam Hotel, on Third Street, and returned in 
the evening, and the four-horse Troy coach, which carried 
the mail to Bethlehem and passed Market Square, Ger- 
mantown, about six in the morning. 

Those were the days when everyone knew his neighbour, and 
tramps were unheard of; each enjoyed his own doorstep and roof- 
tree, and in the security of honest living the open door of the 
comfortable, old-fashioned homes seemed to bid a welcome to the 
passing stranger. 




? T Walnut Lane and Germantown 
Road, set in a spacious shady garden, 
is a long, white house of venerable 
aspect, its ivy-grown gable end to 
the street. This ancient building is 
\Vyck and the original portion of the 
^ house is one of the oldest, if not the 
oldest building in Germantown. 

The first dwelling was built about 1690 or even be- 
fore that date, while another house was built close by at 
a later period and the two were joined together, a wide 
paved passage or waggon way running beneath the con- 
necting portion. This passage was afterwards closed in 
and now forms a "-reat hallwav. An Indian trail is said 
to have preceded this waggon road. The two houses thus 
linked together have made a building of unusual length. 
Trellises cover the whole front of the house and the 
vines with their masses of dark foliage stand out in sharp 
contrast to the gleaming white of the walls. Double 
doors, almost as wide as barn doors, with a long transom 
of little square lights, open into the great hallway. 

It is interesting to note that Wyck has never been sold 
but has passed from one owner to another by inheritance 
and frequently in the female line. The daughter of 
Hans Millan, who built the house, married Dirck Jansen. 
Catharine Jansen, who was born in 1703 and inherited 
the house, married Caspar Wistar; Margaret Wistar, the 
daughter of Caspar and Catharine Jansen Wistar, mar- 



ried Reuben Haines and took the house with her into 
the Haines family where it has remained ever since. 

Caspar Wistar established the first glassworks in the 
country at Salem in New Jersey in 1740. One of the 
famous Wistar goblets, a product of this factory, is still 
carefully preserved at Wyck. It is of greenish glass 
and bears the inscription blown in, " JSIargaretta Visterin, 

The spelling suggests a remark on the orthography of 
the two branches of the AVistar or Wister family and the 
reason of the pique existing between them. The family 
in Germany spelled its name with an " e." When 
Caspar Wistar came to this country, he chose to write his 
name with an " a," thus adopting what had really been 
a mistake of the clerk of the Court, and all his descend- 
ants have followed his example. When his younger 
brother John arrived ten years later, in 1727, he re- 
tained the " e " and his descendants have done the like. 
At the time of the Hicksite split among the Friends, 
the majority of the " er's " chose to follow Elias Hicks; 
their " ar " cousins remained orthodox. Some of the 
Friends, with singular lack of tact, insisted on sending 
a deputation of " ar's " to wait upon their " er " cousins 
and convince them of the error of their ways. The re- 
sult was not happy. This was the origin of the trouble. 

After the battle of Germantown the halls of Wyck 
were used for a hospital and operating rooms, and the 
blood stains may still be seen on the floors. It was at 
Wyck, also, then the residence of Reuben Haines, that a 
reception was tendered Lafayette on the occasion of his 



visit to Germantown on July 20, 1825. After being 
suniptuoiisly entertained at breakfast at Cliveden and 
driving tbence to Barren Hill, the scene of one of his bril- 
liant tactical exploits during the Revolutionary War, the 
^larquis de Lafayette was brought to Wyck and there re- 
ceived the respects of the people who were presented by 
Charles J. Wister. The reception was held in the passage- 
way through the centre of the house, the guests filing in 
through one door and out through the other into the garden 
at the rear. Wyck has been preserved more nearly in its 
original state than many other old houses. There is 
neither gas nor electric light in it and altogether it is to 
all intents and purposes in its pristine condition. There 
is a Spanish chestnut tree in the garden, grown from a 
seedling of a tree that Washington planted for Judge 
Peters at Belmont. 

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Built by John Johnson, 1700 

wye K, (iKHMANTOWN ){<)AI) AM) WALNir l.ANK 
Huill liy II;iM.* Millaii, <•. l(i!)l) 



HE home of this well-known Ger- 
mantown family is situated at the 
corner of Washington Lane and 
Main Street. It is quite typical of 
the first houses that lined the street 
of the old town for nearly two 
miles, their grounds extending back 
of their houses to the Wissahickon Creek on the west and 
even beyond what is now Chew Street on the east. They 
were solidly built of the dark native stone, dressed on the 
front. Many of them had the small pent roof between the 
first and second storeys to afford protection from the 
weather. Often there was a hood over the door, the door 
generally being divided in the middle to keep out stray ani- 
mals when the upper portion was open to admit air and 
light. The Main Street or Germantown Road was once 
called the worst road in the United States. It followed 
what had been a crooked Indian trail and had rows of trees 
on either side. Up and down this street marched the armies 
of Great Britain and of the new Republic and here was 
the centre of conflict on the morning of October 4, 1777- 
It was the route by which the British entered Philadelpliia 
in that year, when the throngs of citizens, clad in their 
best array, lined the sidewalks to see the grenadiers march 
by, steadfast and composed, splendidly equipped, and with 
their music sounding " God Save the King." Here, 
too, they listened to the wild strains of the bearded Hes- 



sians, t(.'rri})Ie in brass-fronted helmets, and suggesting 
])liin(lcr and pillage to the peaceful villagers. 

Dirck Jansen was one of the original settlers of Ger- 
nianto\\'n and came from northern Holland. He began 
the house in 1765 and finished it in 1768, which is the date 
on the stone in the peak. It was built for his son, John 
Johnson, who brought his bride, Rachel Livezey, directly 
there from fleeting where they were married. John was 
the occupant of the house at the time of the battle and, 
alarmed by the noise, went to the door to look out. 

An officer, riding by, warned him to seek a place of 
safety. It being early in the morning, the maids had 
just brought the milk from the barn, but upon the alarm 
hastily left it and all sought refuge in the cellar. After 
the battle the British soldiers ransacked the house, drank 
the milk, and ate everything eatable. There are bullet- 
holes, still plainly visible, through three doors, and a piece 
shot out of the northwest wall by a cannon ball. The 
family had a pet squirrel in a cage in a window of the 
dining-room and, in the hurry to get into the cellar be- 
fore the battle, left the squirrel to its fate. It was so 
scared that it gnawed a large hole in the windowsill, which 
is still to be seen. In the backyard were a wall and a 
fence about a hundred feet apart. The British were be- 
hind the wall and the Americans behind the fence. In 
the spirited engagement which took place, the Americans 
got the worst of it as the bullets easily penetrated the 
fence. Tliis fence, riddled with bullets, stood until 1906, 
when it was removed to the Museum of the Site and 
Kelic Society at Vernon. Relics of buried soldiers, balls, 
and weapons have been found at a late day. 



The house was one of the largest and most substantial 
in early Germanto\vn, and on this account gave some con- 
cern to members of the Society of Friends, of which body 
the Johnsons were members. 

Anthony Johnson relates that he has seen two hun- 
dred Indians in the woods which were then back of the 
house toward Wissahickon Creek. They would remain for 
a week at a time to make and sell baskets, ladles, fiddles, etc. 

He used to watch their feats of agility, going over 
fences in a horizontal position and alighting on their nim- 
ble feet, also shooting at marks and at beavers in the dam. 

John Johnson died in 1805, and his son Samuel in- 
herited the place. His wife, who was Jennit Rowland, 
received it from him when he died in 1847, and lived there 
until her death in 1876. The two daughters, Elizabeth 
R. and Sarah P., occupied it until the former passed 
away in 1905. Another member of the family was Israel 
Johnson, a Friend of dignified mien, plain speech, and 
dress. He prided himself upon the plainness and use- 
fulness of his apparel, and upon being quizzed about the 
buttons on the back of his coat immediately took his pen- 
knife and cut them off. 

INIrs. Josiah Reeve, a great-great-granddaughter of 
the builder, occupied the residence until recently. 

During the Civil War, the house was a station of the 
Underground Railway, which conveyed fugitive slaves 
from the South to Canada, and Mrs. Reeve tells how, 
when a small girl, she wondered why so many families of 
coloured people lived in the attic, and why they never 
stayed more than a day, when a new lot would appear. 

It is now owned by Samuel Johnson, of New Jersey. 





•LIVEDEN, the seat of the Chew 
family, is located on the east side of 
the Main Street of Germantown, be- 
tween Johnson Street and Cliveden 
Avenue, the grounds surrounding the 
house reaching as far east as ^Morton 
Street. It is two and a half storeys 
high and built of solid and heavy masonry. The front is 
of dressed Germantown stone and the beautiful doorway 
is reached by six stone steps. Back of the house are two 
wings used for servants' quarters, kitchen, and laundry; 
one wing is semi-detached and the other entirely so. Along 
the front of the lawn is a low terrace wall and leading up 
to the house are a number of fine old trees. The doorway 
opens into a large hall with small rooms upon either side 
which were used for offices. Through colunms in the rear 
is seen the stairway leading to a landing and window, an 
interior of singular beautv. 

The Chews were longer settled in America than any 
other family represented in our Provincial Council. 
About 1G21 John Chew came to Virginia in the ship 
Chariiie, with three servants, and was followed by his 
wife Sarah in the S ea flour e. 

He settled at James Citie, and was there a member 
of the Assembly. His son, Samuel Chew, removed to 
Maryland, and married Anne, daughter of William 
Ayres. He was judge of the High Provincial Court 
and Court of Chancery of JNIaryland and a member of 


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the Upper House of the Provincial Legislature. A son, 
Samuel, was born in Maryland, October 30, 1693, and 
resided upon an estate called Maidstone near Annapolis. 
He was a physician, a convert of the Society of Friends, 
Chief -Justice of the Three Lower Counties in IT-il, and 
lived during the later years of his life at Dover, Dela- 
ware, where he died in 1742. 

His mother had brought the whole family over to her 
peaceful faith, and when the militia law passed the As- 
sembly of Pennsylvania, the Quaker members appealed 
to the court over which Samuel Chew presided as Chief- 
Justice. L'pon his decision that " self-defense was not 
only lawful, but obligatory upon God's citizens," they 
proceeded to declare their lack of " unity with him." In 
his published commentary upon his disownment he de- 
clares the " Bulls of Excommunication " of his late 
brethren to be " as full-fraught with fire and brimstone 
and other Church artillery, as even those of the Pope of 
Rome." In a charge to the grand jury, delivered shortly 
after the publication of this philippic, he says that in his 
public acts he was " accountable to His Majesty alone, 
and subject to no other control than the laws of the land. 
I am mistaken, it seems, and am accountable for what I 
shall transact in the King's Courts to a paltry ecclesiasti- 
cal jurisdiction that calls itself a ' JMonthly Meeting.' 
' Tell it not in Gath, publish it not in Askelon ' ! " All 
of which shows, of course, that he was never really a con- 
vinced Friend. 

He married jNIary, daughter of Samuel and Anne 
Galloway. Their son, Benjamin Chew, was born in JNIaid- 
stone on the West River, in 1722. He was brought up 



a Quaker and studied law with Andrew Hamilton and 
at the iNIiddle Temple in London, which he entered, at 
the age of nineteen, the same year as Sir William Black- 
stone. He removed to Philadelphia in 1754, was attor- 
ney-general from 1755 to 1769, recorder of the city 1755 
to 1774-, Provincial Councillor 1755, Register-General of 
the I'rovince 1765, member of the commission to settle 
the boundary between JNIaryland and Pennsylvania 1761, 
and in 1774 succeeded William Allen as Chief -Justice of 
the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania. After the Revo- 
lution he was judge and President of the High Coiu-t of 
Errours and Appeals until it was abolished in 1808. His 
first residence was at Front and Dock Streets and this 
remained his town house until 1771 when he purchased 
110 South Third Street, built by Charles Willing for his 
son-in-law, Colonel William Byrd, of Westover, Virginia. 
Judge Chew built Cliveden in 1761, and used it as his 
countryseat. He was noted for the courtesies he paid to 
the members of the first Continental Congress, entertain- 
ing Washington, Adams, and others in a lavish style. 
John Adams records in his diary his admiration for the 
house and furniture on Third Street, and says of the 

22 Thursday. Dined with Mr. Chew, Chief Justice of the 
Province, with all the gentleman from Virginia, Dr. Sliippen, Mr. 
Til^hnian, and many others. We were shown into a grand entry 
and staircase and into an elegant and magnificent chamber until 
dinner. About 4 O'clock we were called down to dinner. The 
furniture was all rich. Turtle and every other thing, flummery, 
jellies, sweetmeats, of 20 sorts, trifles, whipped sillabubs, floating 



islands, fools, etc., & then a dessert of fruits, raisens, almonds, 
pears, peaches, wines most excellent & admirable. I drank 
Madeira at a great rate & found no inconvenience in it. 

Mr. Chew's position was like many others who sympa- 
thised with their fellow-countrymen but who stopped 
short of independence. He signed the Non-importation 
Agreement in 1765, and in his charge to the grand jury 
of the April term, 1776, defined high treason. Dr. John 
Cox arose and asked what was to become of those who 
were opposing the arbitrary power of the British jNIinis- 
try. Chief Justice Chew answered: 

I have stated that an opposition by force of arms to the law- 
ful authority of the King or his Ministry is high treason, but in 
the moment when the King, or his Ministers, shall exceed the au- 
thority vested in them by the Constitution submission to their 
mandate becomes treason. 

Mr. Cox and the jury immediately made a low bow 
to the court and it was the last one held under the Crown. 
In August, 1777, Judge Chew and John Penn, late Pro- 
prietary, were arrested by the City Troop and upon re- 
fusing parole were escorted by an officer and six men to 
the Union Iron Works near Burlington, New Jersey, 
where they remained until their release in 1778. 

The Cliveden estate was originally a part of the John- 
son propert}^ but was bought from Edward Pennington 
and added to in 1765 and 1776 by land from Richard 
Johnson and Thomas Nedrow. It is known in the annals 
of American history as the scene of the chief incident 
of the Battle of GermantoAvn. It is not the purpose to 
describe in detail anj^ more of this famous event than is 



connected with Cliveden. The American centre was ad- 
vancing down the JNIain Street driving all before them. 
One lumdrcd and twenty men of the fortieth regiment of 
the Pritish iVrmy, under Colonel JNIusgrave, entered the 
house and disposed themselves so as to make a vigorous 
defence. The shutters on the first floor were closed and 
most of the men went to the second floor. Captain 
Hains, commanding on the first floor, ordered tables and 
chairs piled against the doors. Fortunately the Chew 
family was aw^ay from home at the time and the house 
was in charge of the gardener and other servants. A 
pretty dairy maid, whom the gardener much admired, 
was rather pleased with the tender familiarities of the red- 
coats, much to the annoyance of her admirer. When the 
firing became heavy he urged her to go to the cellar, but 
without avail until a cannon ball went through the house 
making a great commotion. He then gave her a push 
which sent her headlong to the bottom of the stairs when 
he turned the lock and left her in the cellar. The stub- 
born resistance of the British caused a pause in the 
American advance and a conference of officers was held 
in the dark, thick fog. In front of the Billmeyer House, 
Washington and his officers debated the matter and Lieu- 
tenant-Colonel Smith, of Virginia, volunteered to carry 
a Hag to Colonel Musgrave in the house and summon 
his surrender. He accordingly advanced with a flag of 
truce and a drum, reaching the gate at the road, when a 
shot from a w^indow gave him a wound from which he died. 
General JNlax well's brigade and four pieces of ord- 
nance were ])lanted across the street where Upsala now 
stands, the home of INIiss Sallie Johnson. Maxw^ell's 


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It was about thii doorwiiy that llw l?a(lli> of (icriiiaiilown raged most fiercely 


men repeatedly charged across the lawn without success 
and the six pounders had little effect except to chip the 
statuary and leave dents in the wall which are plainly 
visible to-day. Chevalier Mauduit-Duplessis, in charge of 
the artillery, and Colonel Laurens tried to fire the house. 
Duplessis forced a window on the ground floor and 
mounted, but was met by an officer who presented a pistol 
and demanded his surrender. Another entering hastily 
into the chamber fired a musket shot which killed the officer 
and so saved the life of Duplessis. Major White, of 
Sullivan's staff, made a similar attempt to fire the north 
side, but as he was putting a torch to it he received a 
bayonet in the mouth " which put an end to his existence." 
The checking of the centre's advance at Cliveden pre- 
vented the carrying out of Washington's comprehensive 
plan of battle and so had most to do with the loss of the 
day to the American arms. It was a sorry-looking house 
that remained. The walls and ceilings were blackened 
with smoke and the floor stained with blood. In the front 
hall many holes are to be seen filled with plaster, plainly 
showing because not quite of the same colour as the 
original. Not alone in the hall but everywhere the 
plaster was broken by cannon and rifle balls, the 
woodwork was splintered and the stonework shattered, 
the marble statues were knocked over, broken and dis- 
figiu'ed. One six-pound cannon ball had entered the 
front window, passed through four partitions and had 
gone out at the back. Five carpenters, as well as other 
mechanics, were employed all the next winter putting 
Cliveden in order. The third storey suffered more than 
the second, and the second more than the first. The ceil- 



ing of the second storey was, and is, literally peppered 
with the hiillets from the muskets of those who crept up 
as close as they could and fired into the second storey 
\\'indows. Around the base of one of the columns in the 
hall are to he seen the marks made by the muzzles of the 
muskets which were stacked there with the locks up so 
as to keep the powder dry. The barrels were wet from 
the thick fog of the morning and the oxide of iron made 
a permanent mark on the floor. 

Benjamin Chew married Mary, daughter of John 
and Mary Thomas Galloway, and Elizabeth, daughter 
of James and INlary Turner Oswald. The children of 
the first marriage were Mary, Anna !Maria, Eliza- 
beth, Sarah, and Henrietta. Mary, Elizabeth, and Sarah 
married Alexander Wilcocks, Edward Tilghman, and John 
Galloway respectively. Those born of the second mar- 
riage were Benjamin, Peggy Oswald, Joseph, Julianna, 
Henrietta, Sophia, ]SIaria, Harriett, and Catharine. 
Benjamin, Peggy Oswald, Julianna, Sophia, and Harriett 
married Katharine Banning, John Eager Howard, Philip 
Nicklin, Henry Phillips, and Charles Carroll respectively. 

With such a household of attractive and accomplished 
children we can imagine that times were brisk at Clive- 
den. The daughters were among the most fascinating 
of a brilliant set and Joseph Shippen well depicts Mary 
and Anna Maria in his lines: 

With eitlier Chew such beauties dwell, 
Such channs by each are shared, 
No critic's judging eye can tell 
Wliich merits most regard. 



'Tis far beyond the painter's skill 
To set their charms to view, 
As far beyond the poet's quill 
To give the praise that's due. 

And this from an unknown poet on picking up a 
knot of ribbon at the Assembly : 

If I mistake not — 'tis the accomplished Chew, 

To whom this ornamental bow is due; 

Its taste like hers, so neat, so void of art — 

Just as her mind and gentle as her heart. 

I haste to send it — to resume its place, 

For beaux should sorrow o'er a bow's disgrace. 

Peggy Chew is perhaps the best known of these 
lovely sisters on account of the romance said to have ex- 
isted between her and Major Andre, who fought in her 
honour as one of the Knights of the Blended Rose in the 
" Mischianza " with the motto " No Rival." He wrote an 
account of the affair for her afterward and the manu- 
script is tenderly preserved by her descendants together 
with his water-colour sketch of himself in the costume he 
wore at the fete and several poems addressed by him to 
his fair friend during his sojourn at Cliveden. Chanc- 
ing to see her walking in the orchard, " under green apple 
boughs," he wrote: 

The Hebrews write and those who can 
Believe an apple tempted man 
To touch the tree exempt ; 
Tho' tasted at a vast expense, 



'Twas too delicious to the sense, 

Not mortally to tempt. 

But had the tree of knowledge bloomed, 

Its branches by much fruit perfumed. 

As here enchants my view— 
What mortal Adam's taste could blame, 
Who would not die to eat the same, 
When gods might wish a Chew? 

He wrote to her at parting: 

If at the close of war and strife. 
My destiny once more 
Should in the various paths of life. 
Conduct me to this shore; 

Should British banners guard the land, 
And faction be restrained; 
And Cliveden's peaceful mansion stand 
No more with blood bestained ; 

Say, wilt thou then receive again 
And welcome to thy sight. 
The youth who bids with stifled pain 
His sad farewell to-night? 

Peggy Chew wrote most entertaining letters to her 
friend, Rebeeea Franks, the beautiful Loyalist who was 
undergoing exile in New York City, but in spite of her 
I^oyalist leanings, in which her whole family shared, she 
married Colonel John Eager Howard, of Maryland, a 
brave soldier of the Continental Army. 

She loved to dwell, however, . upon the charms of 
.Major Andre, which naturally irritated her patriotic hus- 



band, so that one day when she remarked to some dis- 
tinguished foreigners that " Major Andre was a most 
witty and cultivated gentleman," he exclaimed, " He 
was a damn spy, sir; nothing but a damn spy! " 

We find in Washington's diary under date of May 
23, 1787, " Dined at JNlr. Chew's with the wedding guests. 
I drank Tea there in a large circle of Ladies." This 
was at the Chew's town house on Third Street and Wash- 
ington was attending the Constitutional Convention 
nearby in the State House. He was an old friend of Mr. 
Chew's, however, having been entertained by him when 
the Continental Congress first met, and having rented the 
Third Street house from JNIay 19, 1781, to JNIarch 22, 
1782. This house was immediately north of the Powel 
House and was taken down in 1830. It had spacious 
gardens, the only ones, remarks Ann Warder in her diary, 
besides Mr. Norris's in the city. The intimacy between 
the two families was continued, and Washington, in de- 
scribing a house-party at iNIount Vernon, February 25, 
1799, names Miss Chew as one of his guests. 

Benjamin Chew, Jr., was of the Class of 1775 of the 
Universitv of Pennsylvania, and studied law at the 
Middle Temple in London. He was admitted to the 
bar of Philadelphia in 1786 and died at Cliveden April 
31, 1844, at the ripe age of eighty-six. His wife died in 
March, 1855, and there were thirteen children. 

Mr. Chew is described as a man of polished manners, 
S}Tnmetry of form and features, and of great strength. 
He was noted for his hospitality and benevolence and was 
the last in Germantown to wear short clothes, with low 
shoes and buckles, and his hair done up in a queue. He 



was a trustee of tlie Gcrniantown Academy for forty-four 
years and its president for thirty-eight, the longest term 
of service in the Iiistorv of the school. 

C'li\ edcn was out of the Chew family for a while when 
Justice Chew sold it September 3, 1779, to Blair ^Ic- 
Clenalian for Jj^OOOO. He bought it back, however, on 
April 15, 1787, for $25,000. Blair ^IcClenahan was one 
of the original members of the Philadelphia City Troop 
and a subscriber and director of the Bank of Pennsyl- 
vania in 1780. He made a great deal of money fitting 
out privateers. He was the head of the Gallic party, 
president of the Democratic Society, and sympathised 
with France in 1794. When asked what he would do 
^\^th Jay's Treaty, he replied, "Kick it to Hell, Sir!" 
]\IcClenahan was a member of the Pennsylvania Assem- 
bly, of Congress in 1797, and a Commissioner of L^nited 
States Loans. Although having sold Cliveden to its 
original owner in the spring of 1787, he evidently spent 
tlie summer there, for Washington dined with him there 
August 19 of that year, having, while President of the 
Constitutional Convention, ridden up tlirough German- 
town with Samuel Powel to the old encampment at 

On July 20, 1825, Cliveden was the scene of a 
" Breakfast " to the Marquis de Lafayette, the sole sur- 
vivor of AVashington's generals, welcomed by the nation 
throughout its twenty-four States upon his triumphant 
tour of farewell. Escorted by a company of the Ger- 
mantown cavalry, tlie Germantown Blues, his brethren 
of the Freemasons and numerous benevolent societies, the 
general, riding in an open barouche drawii by four grey 


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Hiiilt liv Clii.'f .Iiislicf ("how. ITCl 


horses, was driven up the JNIain Street to the Chew 
house, where Mr. Benjamin Chew, Jr., greeted him and 
presented him to the various members of his escort, as 
well as to a vast number of the inhabitants of the town, 
both " males and females." The scene is pictured in a 
painting by E. L. Henry and is best described by a con- 
temporary letter from Miss Ann Johnson, who lived at 
Upsala across the way. It is dated July 24, 1825, ad- 
di'essed to her mother at Saratoga Springs, and is now at 
the JMuseum of the Site and Relic Society in Vernon 

Last 4th. day morn I had the honour of breakfasting with 
LaFayette at Mr. Chews. I wish you had been here — the house 
both up and down stairs was crowded with men, women and sol- 
diers — and around the house. Mrs. and two of the Mifs 
Morris's and myself were the only invited ladies that sat down to 
Breakfast — about 16 sat down at first, and when they had fin- 
ished others took their place, and so on till I believe nearly 
all the soldiers had breakfast — those that did not come in had 
something in the kitchen. I heard that they eat every thing 
they had till at last the cook had to lock the doors. 

I was introduced to LaFayette twice and shook hands with 
him three times. Ann Chew regretted M was not there to enjoy 
the scene — it was quite delightful to see anything so animated 
in G — pp. There was so much noise that I could not hear a 
word the General said, every person seemed so anxious to sec 
him eat, that a centinal had to keep guard at the door with a 
drawn sword — it was very fine indeed. When he departed the 
shouts of the multitude and the roaring of the cannon was al- 
most deafening. A. L. Logan said I could give you a very fine 
description of it — but I told him I would have to leave it to your 
imagination, it would be impossible for me to describe everything. 



Miss ^Vnii Sophia Pemi Chew was the hostess upon 
this occasion and was the last survivor of the children of 
licnjaniiii Chew, Jr. Three of liis cliildren married: 
Eenjaniin married Elizabeth Margaret Tilghman, Eliza- 
hetli ^largaretta, James jNl. JNIason of oSIason & Slidell 
fame and Henry Banning, Harriett Ridgely of Mary- 
land and Elizabeth Ann Ralston of Philadelphia. Two 
sons of the last married : Charles Ridgely married Harriett 
Green and Samuel JNIary J. Brown. These were the 
only two descendants of the Chief-Justice bearing the 
name. JNIrs. Samuel Chew now occupies Cliveden in 
the spring and autumn. The house is preserved in its 
original condition and owing to the absence of water, gas, 
or electricity can hardly be expected to keep up its repu- 
tation for hospitality the year round. A large part of 
the acreage, known as Chew's Woods, has been presented 
to the city as a public park, but the barn in the rear of 
the house still retains a rural appearance and is con- 
nected ^Aith the house by an underground passage. 
AVithin it is the old family coach, which many inhabitants 
still remember proceeding up the Main Street with Mr. 
Benjamin Chew in his sm^ll clothes within, a negro driver 
on the front seat, and a footman standing in the rear hold- 
ing on to the straps. 

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N the west side of Main Street in 
Germantown, and opposite the Chew 
House, stands one of the finest speci- 
mens of Philadelphia Colonial archi- 
tecture. The splendid and rare 
trees and the luxurious garden with 
its rows of box-bush and arbours 
are features that leave little to be desired in home 

The property is near the corner of Upsal Street and 
is a part of the tract owned by John Johnson and built 
upon by him at Washington Lane. It originally ex- 
tended from the Main Street to the township line now 
called Wissaliickon Avenue. Upsala was begun in 1798, 
as the date-stone in the gable tells us, and was three years 
in the building. Its owner was John Johnson, Jr., the 
son of Joseph, who inherited the land from his grand- 
father John. He married Sarah Wheeler of the city 
and there were nine children to bless them. 

On the site of the house were planted the cannon 
that assailed the Chew house at the Battle of German- 
town, and here were also encamped the Fortieth Regi- 
ment of Foot, enlisted from the riffraff of London, a part 
of which occupied and defended Cliveden. 

Upsala is built of stone, faced and carefully pointed 
on the front, and has a portico over the door which is 
reached by four marble steps. A large wide hall runs 
through the centre of the house with an archway in the 



middle at the approach to the stairway. There are two 
rooms on each side and the kitchens are in a rear wing. 
The rooms and hallway are wainscotted in white panels 
to a chair-rail and there are high beautiful mantels m 
each room. All have fireplaces with iron tirebacks and 
dark marble facings. 

The property has come from its builder to his son, 
Norton Johnson, and from him to the only descendants. 
Dr. ^^"illiam N. Johnson and Miss Sallie W. Johnson, 
the latter living in the house. 

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i'AlU.orit AT ri'SAI^V 



>ARLTON is situated on the west side 
of Indian Queen Lane after cross- 
ing Wissahickon Avenue on the out- 
skirts of lower Germantown. It lies 
upon a portion of a tract of five 
thousand acres which William Perm 
deeded to John and Ann Charlotte 
Lowther, who sold it in 1731 to Joseph Turner, and he in 
turn to John Ashmead. It next came into the possession 
of Mr. Henry Hill, during whose ownership were enacted 
the most interesting events in its history. This was about 
1777, and it then consisted of a large tract of land partly 
in Roxborough and partly in Penn Township, situated 
upon an elevated plateau of several hundred acres east of 
the Schuylkill River, bounded on the north by School 
House Lane, on the east by a road dividing Germantown 
and Roxborough Townships known as Township Line 
Road, and sloping sharply on the west to the river. It ex- 
tended southward from School House Lane on both sides 
of Indian Queen Lane, termed in early deeds " a road lead- 
ing from Germantown to Schuylkill Falls alias Robert's 
Ferry," the house and farm buildings being in Roxbor- 
ough Township. 

Hemy Hill, son of Doctor Richard Hill, was born 
in 1732 on his father's Maryland plantation. He was 
educated as a merchant and settled in Philadelphia, en- 
gaging extensively in the Madeira wine trade, his father 
havino- removed to that island in 1730. " Hill's ]Ma- 

17 257 


(leira " was widely known as one of the clioicest brands in 
the lMiihi(leli)hia market. JNIr. Hill was justice of the 
peace in 1772, member of the Carpenters' Hall Confer- 
ence of the Committee of Safety, 1775, and of the Consti- 
tutional Convention of 1776. He was an original member 
of the First City Troop, commanded a battalion of Asso- 
ciators in 1776, and in 1779 subscribed five thousand 
pounds to the Pennsylvania Bank, an institution organ- 
ised for the purchase of provisions for the Continental 
Army. He was one of the original subscribers to the 
Bank of North America and a director from 1781 to 1792. 
From 1780 to 1784 he was a member of the Assembly, and 
the Executive Council from 1785 to 1788. He w^as a 
trustee of the Germantown Academy from 1784 until his 
death in 1798 and was President of the Board. His to\vn 
house, which he built, was at the corner of Fourth and 
Union Streets, now De Lancey. This was in after years 
the residence of Doctor Philip Syng Physick. He mar- 
ried a daughter of Reese INIeredith, whom he survived, and 
died of yellow fever September 15, 1798, leaving no issue. 

It was about INIr. Hill's country house, not then 
called Carlton, that the Continental Army encamped in 
1777 during the first week in August before the Battle 
of the Brandywnne and also for two days in September 
of that year after the battle. In a letter from Wash- 
ington to Edward Rutledge, dated Fishkill, October 5, 
1778, he says: " In the month of August last year [1777] 
from the house of Henry Hill, near Germantown, where 
I was then encamped, I wrote you a long letter." 

Lieutenant James INIcjMichael, of the Pennsylvania 
Line, writes in his diary of the stir thc}^ made in the town: 



The largest collection of young ladies I almost ever beheld 
came to camp. They marched in three columns. The field offi- 
cers paraded the rest of the officers and detached scouting parties 
to prevent being surrounded by them. For my part being sent 
on scout, I at last sighted the ladies and gave them to know 
that they must repair to headquarters, upon which they accom- 
panied me as prisoners. But on parading them at the Colonel's 
marquee, they were dismissed after we treated them with a double 
bowl of Sangaree. 

During the first encampment a review of the army 
was held on August 8, of which the Marquis de La- 
fayette writes in the third person: 

About 11000 men, ill armed and still worse clothed, presented 
a strange spectacle to the eye of the young Frenchman. Their 
clothes were parti-coloured and many of them were almost naked ; 
the best clad wore hunting shirts, large gray linen coats, which 
were much used in Carolina, As to their military tactics it will 
be sufficient to say that for a regiment ranged in order of battle 
to move forward on the right of its line it was necessary for the 
left to make a continued countermarch. They were always ar- 
ranged in two lines, the smallest men in the first line. No other 
distinction as to height was ever observ^ed. In spite of these dis- 
advantages the soldiers were fine and officers zealous ; virtue stood 
in place of science, and each day added to experience and discipline. 

No doubt the Commander-in-Chief and his officers, 
Generals Greene, Knox, Stirling, Maxwell, Wayne, 
Moylan, Stephen, Muhlenberg, Weeden, Morgan, and 
Nash, were grouped with JNIr. Hill and his family on 
the little knoll upon which the house stood, to watch 
this review of the Army of the United States, and we 
may imagine their emotions as they watched the tattered 



heroes pass, soon to meet the hail of bullets at Brandy- 
wine and the rigours of winter at Valley Forge. 

General AVashington wrote a long letter to his 
brotlier Jolin, dated August 5, 1777, from JNIr. Hill's 
house. lie speaks of the long march in the extreme heat 
and the consequent fatigue and injuries of the men. They 
remained here encamped until the afternoon of August 
8, when, believing that the enemy had abandoned all de- 
signs against Philadelphia, orders were given to march 
back to Coryell's Ferry [New Hope, Pa.]. But on re- 
ceipt of information that the enemy's fleet had been seen 
near the Capes of the Delaware they were halted and 
encamped on the Old York Road near the Neshaminy 
Creek half a mile above the present village of Harts- 
ville, Bucks County, where they remained until August 
23. As we have seen they were again at ]Mr. Hill's place 
after the Battle of the Brandywine. Many faces were 
missing and they must have presented a distressing sight 
compared with that brave review but a month before. 

When the British iVi-my occupied Germanto\\qi in 
1777 the Hessians formed the left wing and were en- 
camped from the village to the Schuylkill River. At 
this time their commander. General Knyphausen, had his 
headquarters at Carlton, so that within a short space of 
time it was the brilliant scene of the encampments of 
])oth armies. What a busy and exciting time for the 
household of Henry Hill it must have been! We 
can imagine the pride and pleasure with wliich he enter- 
tained General Washington and his distinguished staff 
and his subsequent uneasiness when the place was filled 
witli Hessians. There must have been action about the 


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house, too, as a stone in the wall on Indian Queen Lane 
testifies. This stone was removed to its present loca- 
tion from a crumbling wall nearby and is thus inscribed, 
" Ruined by the war 1777 rebuilt more firmly by the 
trusty Isaac Tustin." 

The present house was built by Mr. Hill, as a stone 
in the foundation of the porch states, in 1780, on the site 
of the old farmhouse. It is a stone plastered structure 
of two and a half storeys standing upon a knoll and has 
two wings, one longer than the other. There are two 
bays in front and one dormer in the roof. The rooms 
are of the depth of the house and there are several to the 
right and left of the hallway. The partitions are of 
solid stone plastered without lathing. 

As Mr. Hill had no descendants the place was sold 
to Thomas Lee, brother of Bishop Lee, who called it 
Roxborough. There is still the mark of his wife, " R. 
Lee," cut on a pane of glass with a diamond. 

The next owner was John C. Craig, who married 
Jane Josephine Riddle, and was a man of great wealth. 
He maintained a stud of racehorses and had a racecourse 
in front of the house. Mr. Craig was taken ill and died 
while abroad in 1840. In May of that year the place 
was sold to Mr. Cornelius Smith, who changed its name 
from the Plantation of Roxborough to the present Carl- 
ton, at the suggestion of a relative because of his wife's 
name, Elizabeth — Carlton being the name of one of 
Queen Elizabeth's castles. It is now occupied by his 
son and his daughter, Robert S. Smith and Mrs. New- 
hall, and a large part of the estate forms the modern 
settlement of Queen Lane Manor. 






pPRING BANK is situated on the 
west side of Wissahickon Avenue 
near where Westview Street joins 
it from the east. Wissahickon Ave- 
nue is the old Township Line Road 
which divided Gerniantown from 
Roxborough Township and now 
separates the twenty-second and twenty-first wards of 

It is not known just when the house was built but on 
February 12, 173G, JNlatthias Jacobs and his wife Bar- 
bara conveyed the sixty acres wath the buildings and 
improvements to William Rittenhousen of Roxborough 
Township, the grandson of William Rittenhousen, who 
was born in 1664 in the principality of Broich on the 
Ruhr. His ancestors had long been makers of paper at 
Arnheim, and wiien taking the oath of citizenship in 
Amsterdam he was described as a papermaker from 
JMuhlheim. He emigrated to New^ York with his three 
children, but finding no printer there to use the product 
of his industry, came to Gerniantown in 1688, and in 1690 
l)uilt the first papermill in America on a little stream 
called tlie JMonoshone Creek, and later Pa])cr ]Mill Run, 
wliicli flowed into the Wissahickon. The mill w^as w^ashed 
away })y a flood several times but was always rebuilt, and 
the original house of the family still stands on the I^in- 
coln Drive where Rittenhouse Street comes down from 



Germantown. He was the founder of the family here 
and his great-grandson, David Rittenhouse, was the fa- 
mous astronomer, philosopher, and statesman, who was 
president of the Philosophical Society, treasurer of the 
State, director of the mint, and died in 1796. William 
Rittenhouse was the first iMennonite preacher in German- 
town, being chosen October 8, 1702. 

The Spring Bank property is not far from the paper- 
mill and no doubt the Rittenhouse family owned all of 
the intervening land. 

William died on February 18, 1708, and the paper- 
making was carried on by his son " Clans," who died 
in 1734 and left the mill to his son William, the pur- 
chaser of Spring Bank, and who is described in the deed 
as " paper maker." He had three sons, Jacob, Martin, 
and Nicholas. Jacob had the mill during the Revolu- 
tion and was one of the minute-men to go out with the 
Roxborough troops. Nicholas Rittenhouse was a miller 
and probably operated the mill on the opposite side of 
the WissahJckon Creek, the foundations of which are 
still standing. At the death of his father, William, he 
took the place by conveyance from Nicholas in the par- 
tition of the estate, and in 1795 sold it to Peter Care, 
an eminent miller and flour merchant of the city, who sold 
it, in 1803, to Henry Pratt, his son-in-law. 

Henry Pratt was the son of JNIatthew Pratt, a famous 
" limner " of 1758, whose father learned to be a gold- 
smith from Philip Syng. 

They lived in Water Street, Philadelphia, and Henry 
was thrice married, his last wife being Susanna Care, 
daughter of Peter and Anna Barbara Care. In 179G 



Ilcnry l*ratt bought the residence of Isaac Wharton at 
112 North Front Street between the houses of Abraham 
Kintzing, his partner, and Henry Drinker. Thereupon 
the Cares moved to the Water Street house. 

Wlien Henry Pratt parted with the Spring Bank 
property in 1816, it passed through the hands of Joseph 
Huckel, dentist, Jonathan and George Thomas, mer- 
cliants, and William Overington, farmer, until it came, 
in 1825, to Samuel jNIason, the steward of the Pennsyl- 
vania Hospital, described in the deeds as " Gentleman." 

Samuel Mason was an Irish Friend who was one of 
the founders and first trustees of the Germantown 
F^riends' IMeeting on School House Lane, in which the 
Rittenhouses and Livezeys were also prominent. 

During his care of this Meeting there arose a matter 
of discipline which was long before the Meeting for settle- 
ment. It so preyed upon the mind of one concerned 
Friend, Priscilla Deaves, that she became unbalanced 
and took every occasion to preach from the text, " The 
Innocent Suffer, while the Guilty go Free." Having 
been admonished in vain, it was decided to adopt sum- 
mary measures, and when she next arose two stalwart 
elders stepped to her side and raising her upon their 
shoulders bore her down the aisle toward the door. 
Whereupon she exclaimed : " I am more honoured than 
our Saviour, He was carried on the back of one ass, 
while I am borne on the backs of two." 

Samuel Mason established a sanatorium at Spring 
Bank, and lived there until 1838, when it was sold to 
George Wilson, " marble mason " and farmer, from 
whom Doctor Edward Lowber bought it in 1840. 



Doctor Lowber married Elizabeth Twells, and their 
daughter, Mary, became the second wife of John Welsh, 
son of John and Jemima JMaris Welsh. Doctor Lowber 
bequeathed the estate to his son, William T. Lowber, and 
his grandchildren Welsh. From these John Welsh pur- 
chased the place in 1870. Mr. Welsh had first married 
Rebecca Bass Miller and Spring Bank is now owned by a 
daughter of this marriage who is JNIrs. J. Somers Smith. 

John Welsh was an eminent and successful merchant 
of great executive ability. He began his long public 
service as chairman of the Executive Committee of the 
Sanatory Fair in 1864 and nine years later was chosen 
president of the Board of Finance of the Centennial 
Exliibition. His successful administration of this trust 
is well known, and in 1877 the citizens of Philadelphia 
presented him with a fund of $50,000 which he donated 
to the University of Pennsylvania to endow the " John 
Welsh Centennial Professorship of History and Eng- 
lish Literature." It was largely through his efforts that 
the University buildings in West Philadelphia were 
erected and paid for. 

President Grant offered him the positon of Secretary 
of the Treasury but he declined, only to be appointed 
by President Hayes Minister to Great Britain, where 
his distinguished service made him liighly popular at the 
English Court. He received the degree of LL.D. from 
the University of Pennsylvania and from Washington and 
Lee University as well as other honours from various 
European sovereigns. He occupied many positions of 
trust in the philanthropic, financial, and business organi- 
sations of Philadelphia and died at the advanced age of 



eighty-one. lie was verj' fond of Spring Bank and gave 
considerable of his land to Fairmount Park, including 
" Molly Kinker's Rock " where he erected a heroic statue 
of AVilliani Penn, called " Toleration," which overlooks 
the valley of the Wissahickon. Back of the house is a 
walk leading to the brink of the hill where are two trees 
and a seat joined to them where he loved to sit and sur- 
vey the view so much like Berkshire in old England with 
its forests and cleared fields. Perhaps there is no place 
so near the city which preserves the wild conditions of 
the past so well as this one. Here the raccoons still steal 
the corn and foxes scamper across the lawns. All the 
old features of early days are evident — the smoke house, 
the spring house, and the fish pond at the base of the lit- 
tle hill upon which the house stands. It was in such 
ponds as this that the early settlers preserved the fish, 
which they had caught, until a suitable time for eating. 
The stone plastered house has been added to many times 
and is on several levels. The big fireplace and the crane 
are still to be seen and while the architecture is not pre- 
tentious it is most quaint and interesting. 

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£)HERE Wissahickon Avenue ends at 
Allen's Lane, in Germantown, Live- 
zey's Lane runs down toward the 
Wissahickon Creek in a northerly 
direction. The creek is but a short 
distance away and on its banks stands 
Glen Fern, more commonly known 
as the Livezey House, surrounded by numerous dilapi- 
dated buildings which originally served as mills, granaries, 
and cooper shops. The mill was built by Thomas Shoe- 
maker, who conveyed it to Thomas Livezev October 10, 
Yl^l. He was probably the son of Jacob and jNIargaret 
Shoemaker as this was the only Thomas Shoemaker of a 
possible age in the country at this time. Jacob was the 
first to arrive in Germantown, coming with Pastorius in 
the ship America which sailed from Gravesend, England, 
June 6, 1682, and arrived August 16, of the same year. 
He gave the land upon which the Germantown Friends' 
Meeting now stands at Coulter and JNIain Streets and was 
sheriff of the town in 1690. The son Thomas married 
Mary Powel in 1775. 

The progenitor of the Livezeys was Thomas, who 
came from Chester, England, about 1680, and settled on 
the Pennypack Creek in Lower Dublin Township. He 
also had a house on the south side of Chestnut Street, 
Philadelphia, midway between Fourth and Fifth Streets, 
where he lived for the first three years. He served on 
the first grand jury of the first court held in the Province, 



.January 2, 1G81. His land consisted of seven hundred 
and lif'ty acres and the original house is still standing 
about a mile east of Fox Chase in the thirtv-fifth ward 
of riiiladelphia. A son, Jonathan, married Rachel 
Taylor and of the six children born to them, Thomas, who 
married Elizabeth Heath, was the father of Thomas, Jr., 
born January 23, 1723, who bought the property on the 
Wissahickon Creek. 

Thomas Livezey was a many sided man; he lived be- 
side his mill on the Wissaliickon and cultivated a large 
farm on the hillside and adjacent country. His house 
stood on a terrace with stone steps leading up to the 
door with seats on each side, over which there is a bal- 
cony. The hallway is rather small with a winding stair- 
way leading to the second storey. The rooms are wains- 
cotted in wliite panels and there is a fireplace in each 
room surrounded by dark marble. In the kitchen there 
is a fireplace of huge dimensions, large enough for sev- 
eral people to sit in, w^ith a window alongside the seat in the 
inglenook which they called the " courtin corner." In 
front of the house the old box-bushes denote the presence 
of a garden. 

A spring sparkles forth at one end of the house and 
the whole is surrounded by the virgin forest. 

Thomas Livezey was somewhat of a wag and given 
to expressing himself in verse at times. While inter- 
ested in the law itself, as his mention of Blackstone's 
Commentaries in his will indicates, he enjoyed an oppor- 
tunity to cast aspersions playfully upon its practitioners. 
He was a fellow-trustee of the Union School of German- 
town, now the Germantown Academy, with Joseph 



Galloway, a prominent Friend, la>vyer, and politician. 
They seem to have been very close friends and Galloway 
was wont to poke fun at his friend Livezey for living 
in such a hidden place as the wilds of the Wissahickon, 
so far removed from the busy world and so inaccessible. 
This gave him the occasion to describe his abode in the 
following lines: 
Dear Friend I^^c. 14th. 1769. 

As thou hast often concluded from the lowness of my situa- 
tion, that I must be nearly connected with the lower regions, or 
some infernal place of abode, I have sent thee the following true 
description of the place of my residence in order to convince thee 
of that errour. 

Near Wissahiccon's mossy banks, where perling fountains glide, 
Beneath the spruce's shady boughs, and laurels blooming pride. 
Where little fishes sport and play, diverting to the sight. 
Whilst all the warbling winged race, afford the ear delight. 
Here's evergreens by nature set, on which those songsters sing, 
And flowery aromatic groves, form an eternal Spring. 
Refreshing breezes round me move, which with the blossoms play, 
And balmy odours on their wings, through all my vale convey. 
Those charming scenes, didst thou dwell here, would all thy care 

And in the room of anxious fear, would fonn a harmless smile. 
Here's innocence and harmony, which raises thoughts sublime 
Little inferior to the place, call'd Eden in its prime. 
Thus situated here I dwell, where these sweet zephyrs move, 
And little rivulet from rocks, add beauty to my grove. 
I drink the wine my liills afford, on wholesome food I dine, 
My Httle offspring round me are, like clusters on the vine. 
I, hand in hand, with second self oft walk amidst the bowers. 
Whilst all our little prattling ones, are gathering opening flowers, 



III this low station here Tin Hx'd nor envy courts nor kinj^s, 
Nor crave the hon'rs statesmen crave nor cares which riches bring, 
lion's a dangerous tempting thing, wliich oft lead men astray, 
Riclies like insects from them wing, and quickly flee away. 
]\Iy meditations here arc free from interrupting strife. 
Whilst different ways aspiring men pursue indifferent life. 
I see what art the clergy use, who will be paid to pray, 
And how poor clients are abused, by Lawyers long delay ; 
I sec what cunning artifice, the busy world employ. 
Whilst I this lonely seat of bliss, uncnvied here enjoy. 
This is the place of my abode where humbly here I dwell. 
Which in romantic Lawyer mood, thou hast compar'd to hell 
But paradise where Adam dwelt, in blissful love & ease, 
A Lawyer would compare to hell, if thence he got no fees. 
Canst thou prefer heaven on earth, thy fee the root of evil, 
To this my lonely harmless place, my hell without a devil? 

Pennit me from my low situation to thine of eminence, to do 
myself that justice as to say, I am with much respect thy sincere 

^'''^"^- Thomas Lr'ezey. 

I shall conclude with the words made use of by Zacheus of 
old, " Come down. Come down quickly, for I want thee to dine 
at my house." 

Besides being a founder of the Union School House 
of Germantown in 1759, he was a justice of the peace 
and a Provincial Commissioner in 1765. Being a Friend, 
he took no part in the struggle for independence, but at 
the time of the Battle of Germantown, hearing the roar 
of the cannon, he ascended the hill back of his house and 
cliMd)cd onto a fence to get a view of the lighting. But 
a stray bullet broke off a limb of the tree under which 



he was, and he conckided it was best to return to the 

The house has capacious cellars and during the troub- 
lous times of the Revolution the girls of the family to- 
gether with all the eatables and drinkables were locked 
below stairs for safety. Upon one occasion during the 
British occupancy of Germanto^vTi some red-coated sol- 
diers came to the house and demanded food. The women 
folk said they had been cooking all day and were too 
weary to prepare it. Whereupon one of the soldiers 
drew his sword and smote off one of the women's ears. An 
officer entering at the time demanded to know who had 
done such a foul deed and when the soldier was pointed 
out to him he clave the culprit's head in twain with 
his sabre. 

Livezey cultivated a fine vineyard on his hillside and 
his wine, indeed, brought him a little modest renown, for 
his friend, Robert Wharton, sent a dozen bottles of it 
to Benjamin Franklin from whom he received this reply: 

DEAa Frie^-i,- I'*™»'-y 20-1768. 

I received your favours of November 17th. & 18th., with another 
dozen bottles of excellent wine, the manufacture of our friend 
Livezey. I thank you for the care you have taken in forwarding 
them, and for your good wishes that accompany them. 

Bexjamin Franklin. 

An interesting description of the troubles these early 
Colonists had to meet is contained in Elizabeth Drinker's 
Journal under date of October 24, 1793, in wliich she 
states that Thomas Livezey's mill was on fire and that 



crowds of people witli buckets went on foot and on horse- 
back together witli the fire engine commonly known as 
the *' Shag Hag," now in the museum of the JNIutual Fire 
Association, JNIain Street and School House Lane. The 
mill was burned down and six hundred barrels of flour, 
five hundred bushels of wheat, and a quantity of salt and 
g-inger were lost, amounting to three thousand pounds 
sterling, indicating that Livezey did no inconsiderable 
business at that time. F]ilizabeth Drinker adds that 
" the sufferers were pretty well and much composed 

Even in his trade Livezey broke into verse, as this to 
Thomas Wharton shows: 

Respected Friend I've sent thee bran 
As Neat & Clean as any Man 
I've took Great Pains for fear of Loss 
To thee in foundering of thy Horse 
It's Ground With Bur and Ground so nice 
It Looks t'was bolted twace 
But that's No matter Since it's Such 
thy Man Can't ever feed tomuch 
I mean Can't founder if he would 
I've took Such pains to Make it Good. 
Nor will it Ever Dust his Cloaths 
Nor Give thy horse a Mealy Nose 
And further in its praise I'll Say 
t'will Never Make him Runaway 
but if on this alone he's fed 
a Child may hold him with a thread 
feed frceh' then Nor be in Doubt 
I'le send thee More wlien this is out. 



It is 30 bushels I have sent thee, and Notwithstanding the 
Labour & Care I have taken to oblige thee which the bran itself 
will testify to anyone Who is a Judge I have Charged only 15 
pr bushell — Lower than Can Well be aforded but I shall not Re- 
.gard that as it is to a friend — it May appear to thee perhaps 
that I have Said Rather tomuch in praise of the bran yet upon 
Examination I think it will appear . . . (illegible) . . . 
for if it Don' fully answer the Description I have Given it I 
should not be unwilling to make some abatement in price — this 
from thy Most Respectful & Sincere friend 

Thomas Livezey. 

Thomas Wharton was cousin to that Thomas 
Wharton whose father, Joseph Wharton, owned Walnut 
Grove in Southwark where the " Mischianza " was held. 
He was a prominent merchant in Philadelphia, a friend 
of Galloway and of Goddard the printer, and a partner 
with them in the establishment of the latter's newspaper, 
the Chronicle. He was on the King's side, as was Gallo- 
way, was arrested as a Loyalist by order of Congress, 
exiled to Virginia, and his estates confiscated. 

From these examples of his writings we must not 
think of him as an illiterate man. He came to dwell in 
Germantown from well out in the country near the 
present Fox Chase, and the schools in that early day were 
purely elementary. We see, however, his gentle spirit, fair 
in his dealings and appreciative of the beautiful things 
he found in nature. 

In these early days the Wissahickon Creek was more 
than twice its present size and volume, the cutting of the 
forests along its banks and near its source having de- 
creased it since then. It was a favourite course for the 

18 273 


Indians of the Delaware tribe and for some famous her- 
mits. Here it was that the learned Kelpius had his cave 
and nearby Glen Fern, on a hill above a woody romantic 
dell through which the creek meandered, was the Monas- 
tery built by Joseph Gorgas, a Tunker-Baptist, who in- 
tended it as a branch of the brotherhood established at 
Ephrata in Lancaster County. 

The entrance to Glen Fern was secured by the pur- 
chase of a private right of way from the property owners 
from the Cresheim Creek near the present Allen's Lane 
station of the Pennsylvania Railroad about a mile dis- 
tant. This followed the line of Allen's Lane named for 
Major Allen, whose great house stood where the road 
joined the Main Street. 

There was no means of refining the grist which was 
brought to the mill and often garlic became noticeable 
in the flour. This flour was not marketable in Philadel- 
phia and so there arose a large foreign trade, for Livezey 
found a ready sale for the flour in the West Indies and 
countries of the south. To the profits he added Spanish 
dollars diligently gathered from the country round and 
so back in the ships came silks and delicate shades of 
crepe and handsome chinaware. Thus the son John be- 
came a great merchant in the city and rode thence and 
back each day upon horseback. 

Thomas Livezey married Martha Knowles April 2, 
1748, the year after his purchase of Glen Fern. Five 
sons and five daughters were born to them. Rachel mar- 
ried John .Johnson, Martha, Peter Robeson, and Ann, 
Isaac Williams, all of prominent Germantown families. 


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The sons, John and Joseph, inherited Glen Fern and 
carried on the business. 

John married Abigail Ridgway and had two sons, 
John and Thomas. John married Sarah Marshall and 
had no issue ; Thomas married Ann Louise Phillips. They 
lived at Glen Fern and there were born their children, 
John, Joseph, Anna, and Sarah. 

The mill continued to prosper and in the autumn the 
farmers brought in their gi'ain. Often their waggons 
formed a solid line from the mill to the Main Street a 
mile distant, waiting to be unloaded. Thomas was the 
last to operate the mill and, about fifty years ago, it was 
turned to the manufacture of linseed oil for thirty years 
or more. The property was purchased for Fairmount 
Park in the year 1869, and the mill was continued for a 
couple of years as a grist mill by J. Wagner Jermon and 
then torn down. It was the second mill on the place, 
having been built after the fire already described, and 
stood under the present pier of the recent bridge over the 
creek. The road along the banks of the creek was built 
in 1826 from the Ridge Road to the Rittenhouse Mill 
down toward the city. It was continued and completed 
to the Montgomery Coimty Line in 1856, being owned 
by the Wissahickon Turnpike Company, who collected 
toll from travellers until the road, with the remainder 
of the ravine, became part of Fairmount Park in 1869. 

On the hill back of Glen Fern just outside the park 
limits, John Livezey and Sarah Livezey Firth live in an 
ancient house on part of the original tract. The house is 
filled with fine old furniture and bric-a-brac from tlie 



early times. Here also is a painting of Glen Fern by 
I'eale and a portrait of the first John Livezey by Sully. 
(Tien Fern is now occupied by the Valley Green 
Canoe Club, which has restored it, with the help of John 
I^ivezey, the former owner, and which keeps it in excellent 

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=^OPE LODGE, in the Whitemarsh 
Valley, is on the Bethlehem Pike 
just north of its junction with the 
Skippack Pike and is close by St. 
Thomas's Church and Whitemarsh 
station. The house is second to none 
in the neighbourhood of Philadelphia 
either in its broad dignity or in the purity of its Georgian 
architecture. In every detail it is thoroughly typical of 
the phase prevalent at the particular time when it w^as 
built; furthermore it is typical of the kind of large brick 
countryseat peculiar to this section of the Colonies. 

An avenue of overarching trees leads from the road 
to the house which stands on a slight rise. A little to the 
west is St. Thomas's Hill, thrice held by soldiers during 
the Revolutionary struggle. In front, to the north across 
the pike, the Wissahickon winds through peaceful mead- 
ows and beyond rises the long slope of wood-crowned 
Militia Hill — every rood of land full of historic mem- 
ories. By the banks of the stream, with moss-grown 
dam and placid leat, is an ancient stone mill that once 
ground corn for all the Colonists far and near; even Sir 
William Keith used to send wain loads of grain hither 
all the way from Graeme Park at Horsham. 

Hope Lodge is a great square structure of two storeys 
in height with a hipped roof. The doors and windows 
are of a style commonly met with in buildings of the 



early part of the eighteenth century, such as Stenton 
or Graeme Park, and are higher and narrower than 
those of a later period, while over their tops are slightly 
arched lintels or flattened arches, whichever one chooses 
to consider them. Over some of the doors are transoms 
of seven or eight square lights in a row. 

A hall of unusual width, far larger than most rooms 
nowadays, traverses the full depth of the house and opens 
into spacious chambers on each side. The chief rooms 
have round-arched doorways and narrow double doors 
heavily panelled. All the panelling, in fact, is heavy. 
There are deep-panelled window-seats in the ground- 
floor rooms and the windows have exceptionally broad 
and heavy sash-bars. The breadth of the fireplaces and 
the massiveness of the wainscotting correspond \\ath the 
other features. Midway back in the hall, a flattened 
arch springs from fluted pilasters. The stairway, which 
is remarkably good and strongly suggests an old English 
arrangement, ascends laterally from the rear hall. Back 
of the house, a wide brick-paved porch connects with 
another })uilding where were the servants' quarters and 
sundry offices. This plan of having separate buildings 
for the domestics was also quite characteristic of the 
period. Throughout the house all the woodwork, though 
handsomely wrought, is heavy and most substantial. 
Hope Lodge ought to be thoroughly representative of 
the early Georgian style for it was built in 1723 of the 
best materials, fetched in great part, including all the 
woodwork, from England. 

Samuel Morris, the son of Morris Morris, a Welsh 
Quaker, who lived near Abington, erected Hope Lodge 


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to receive an expected bride, but notwithstanding his 
ample preparation he lived and died a bachelor. His 
mother, Susanna Heath, was a prominent minister 
among Friends and made a number of religious visits 
to England, Ireland, and Holland. It seems that 
Samuel accompanied his mother across the Atlantic on 
one of these visits and became affianced to a young lady 
in England. Upon the completion of his new house he 
gave a housewarming and entertained his friends and 
neighbours with great hospitality. There was some con- 
viviality, and Samuel, lying upon a settle in his cups, re- 
marked, " I've got the pen; all I want now is the sow! " 
His betrothed was brought news of this indelicate remark 
and being a lady of spirit promptly broke the engagement. 

During the years 1745 to 1753, Samuel Morris was 
a justice of the peace in Whitemarsh and an overseer 
of Plvmouth Meetino; so that he must have had contrition 
for his unfortunate moment and lived an exemplary and 
useful life afterward. He died in 1772 and left his es- 
tate to his brother Joshua, who sold it in 1776 to William 
West, whose executors, in 1784, conveyed the property 
to the life interest of James Horatio Watmough with 
a reversion to Henry Hope. 

Mr. Watmough was Henry Hope's ward and it was 
the wish of the latter that he should enter the banking 
house and pursue a career of financiering, ISIr. Wat- 
mough, however, had other designs, so an estrangement 
arose. The difference was afterward happily adjusted 
and Henry Hope settled the Whitemarsh estate on Col- 
onel Watmough as a peace offering. In compliment 
to his guardian. Colonel Watmough named the place 



Hope Lodge. One of Colonel Watmough's daughters 
married Joseph Reed, the son of General Joseph Reed, 
and anotlier married John Sergeant, the celebrated 
lawyer. Botli the Reeds and Sergeants as well as the 
AVatinoughs lived at Hope Lodge at various times. 
Tlic property now belongs to Mr. Wentz, who occupies 
the house. 




f T the end of a shaded drive that 
sweeps up the rise in a quarter cir- 
cle, set amid great ancient oaks and 
pines and sycamores, the Highlands, 
from its lofty position, overlooks the 
Whitemarsh Valley, doubly rich in 
natural beauty and historical associa- 
tions. On the Skippack Pike about a mile and a half from 
Whitemarsh station it stands just where the road climbs 
well up into the hills that form the valley's northern 

In 1794, Anthony Morris, son of Captain Samuel 
Morris, bought the land, and in 1796 finished the house, 
which is as fine an example of late Georgian architecture 
as one is likely to meet with. Though not strictly Co- 
lonial in point of date, yet all the associations of the 
Highlands are so closely allied to things Colonial that 
it ought to be included among Colonial Homes. The 
broad south front is built of carefully cut and squared 
stone and adorned with fluted Ionic pilasters of lighter- 
coloured stone that support the pediment surmounting 
the middle part of the cornice. The sides are of ordi- 
nary rubble. An unusually wide hallway through the 
centre of the house joins an equally wide cross-hall at 
the back in which latter a broad stately staircase ascends 
by two flights and a gallery landing to the second floor. 
Above the landing and lighting the whole rear hall is a 



beautifully proportioned triple or Palladian window. 
The old Adam mantels with elaborate designs in stucco 
were unfortunately removed many years ago and re- 
placed by classic black marble structures. 

The chief beauty of the Highlands lies in its wonder- 
ful trees and in the old garden now, alas, all overgrown, 
its gieenhouses empty, and its sundial broken. The 
spring-house built at the same time as the mansion is a 
picturesque octagonal stone structure set in a dell be- 
neath a group of lofty sycamores. 

Anthony JNIorris was born in 1766 and though ad- 
mitted to the bar in 1787, subsequently became a mer- 
chant and engaged extensively in the East India trade. 
As a young man he represented the city of Philadelphia 
in the State Senate, and in 1793, when only twenty-seven 
years of age, was chosen speaker to succeed Samuel 
Powel. Because, as speaker, he signed the bill provid- 
ing for troops to suppress the Whiskey Rebellion, the 
JNIeeting of which he was a member disowned him. He 
was the intimate friend of Jefferson, Monroe, and Madi- 
son, and throughout the " INIemoirs and Letters of Dolly 
Madison," who, by the way, was a Philadelphian herself, 
we find cordial references to Anthony Morris. During 
JMadison's administration, he represented the United 
States at the Court of Spain for nearly two years, from 
1813-1815, when he was entrusted with the adjustment 
of the boundary dispute in connection with the Florida 
cession. He was entirely successful in his diplomatic 
mission, which resulted in a final settlement. 

At the time of his death, in his ninety-fifth year, he 


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was the last survivor of the wedding company of Presi- 
dent and Dolly Madison. By his marriage with Mary 
Pemberton in 1790 he became master of Bolton Farm 
also. In 1808 he sold the Highlands to one Hitner, who 
in turn sold the place, in 1813, to Mr. George SheaiF, 
the father of the present occupant, John D. T. Sheaif . 






^^;:9 HE period immediately following 
^'^ the Battle of Germantown was 
one of the most critical that Wash- 
ington and his army had to face in 
the whole course of the Revolution- 
ary struggle. While at times there 
were encouraging tidings to cheer 
them, there was also much to dishearten and perplex. On 
the one hand, there were the notable successes of the 
Northern Army and the surrender of Burgoyne, there was 
a victory at Red Bank and there were reinforcements sent 
in from a distance; on the other, there were desertions, 
the British were gradually tightening their hold on Phila- 
delphia and, worst of all, there was indifference and lack 
of supj)ort on the part of the people in the very State 
where all these things were taking place. 

On October 17, 1777, Washington wTites to Thomas 

It is a matter of astonishment to every part of the conti- 
nent to liear that Pennsylvania, the most opulent and populous 
of all the States, has but 1200 militia in the field at a time when 
the enemy are endeavouring to make themselves completely mas- 
ters of, and to fix their winter quarters in, her capital. 

Again, on October 29, in writing to Landon Carter, 
he says: 



The Northern Army, before the surrender of General Bur- 
goyne, was reinforced by upwards of 1200 Militia who shut the 
only door by which Burgoyne could Retreat and cut off all his 
supplies. How different our case ! the disaffection of a greater 
part of the Inhabitants of this State — the languor of others & 
and internal distraction of the whole, have been among the great 
and insuperable difficulties I have met with, and have contributed 
not a little to my embarrassments this Campaign. 

Only a few days before this a committee of *' weighty 
Friends " had waited upon Washington to express the 
Society's utter disapproval of warfare and offer protest 
against hostilities past or future. 

After the Battle of Germantown, on October 4, the 
army retreated to the Perkiomen region, where it re- 
mained till the eighth, moving thence to Towamencin and 
Worcester, and on the twenty-first to Whitpain Town- 
ship, where the Commander-in-Chief fixed his headquar- 
ters at James Morris's house, Dawesfield, between the 
Skippack and Morris Roads and about one mile west of 
Ambler. It was from Dawesfield that Washington 
^VTote the letter to Landon Carter deploring the luke- 
warm attitude that confronted him; it was at Dawesfield 
that he received much of the depressing intelligence that 
cast a gloom over these days; there, under the presidency 
of General Sullivan, was held the court martial that not 
only acquitted General Wayne of the blame that had 
been laid to him for the Paoli massacre, but paid signal 
honour to his bravery; there also, on October 29, was held 
a council of war to determine future movements at which 
were present his Excellency, the Commander-in-Chief, 
Major-Generals Sullivan, Greene, Stephen, McDougall, 



the ^Iar(|iiis de Lafayette, Brigadier-Generals Maxwell, 
Knox, \'arnuni, AV^ayne, Muhlenburg, Weedon, Hunt- 
ingdon, Conway, and Count Pulaski. To make matters 
worse, tliere was a cold autumn rain falling most of the 
time the army lay at Whitpain, causing added distress 
to the ill-equipped soldiers. All the trees at Dawesfield 
were cut down for firewood except those immediately 
around the Iiouse. 

Set beneath magnificent ov^erarcliing trees, Dawes- 
field now displays toward the west, a long, low, two-storey 
front of grey field stone, with white-painted woodwork. 
In the middle of the west front rises a gable pierced by 
two small half-circle windows. Before the south wing 
was added at a later date, this gable was at the western 
end of the original structure of 1736 which faced toward 
the south. During Washington's occupancy a small 
room in what is now the northern wing was his office and 
it was there that both the court martial and the council 
of war were held. Washington slept in the second storey 
of the then western wing, the bed and bedstead upon 
which he rested being still in use, while Lafayette occu- 
pied the room directly beneath on the ground floor, as he 
was unable to mount stairs owing to a wound of the knee 
received at the Battle of Brandj^vine. The old milk- 
house on the property has loopholes in its walls so ar- 
ranged that the muskets of those within could command 
the road in both directions. 

On November 2, the armv moved to Whitemarsh 
and Washington made the Emlen House (about half a 
mile east of the present Camp Hill station on the North 
Penn railroad) his headquarters. This house was built 



about 1720 and is a roomy structure with a frontage of 
eighty feet and a depth of twenty-seven feet. Unfortu- 
nately, it was modernised in 1854, and a large western 
wing, originally the dining-hall, was demolished. At the 
time of the Revolution " it was a sort of baronial hall in 
size and character " where its wealthy merchant owner, 
George Emlen, " dispensed hospitality to all who came 
under its roof." George Emlen's town house was at 
Fifth and Chestnut Streets opposite the State House. 

In the " baronial hall " at Whitemarsh we can fancy 
Washington dining each afternoon in company with his 
staff after that apologetic invitation noted in the orderly 
book under November 7, which reads: 

Since the General left GermantoAvn [Schuylkill Falls] in the 
middle of September last, he has been without his baggage, and 
on that account is unable to receive company in the manner he 
could wish. He nevertheless desires the Generals, Field Officers, 
and Brigade-Major of the day to dine with him in the future, 
at three o'clock in the afternoon. 

This baggageless plight must have been most morti- 
fying to Washington, for he was a great stickler for pro- 
priety of clothing. 

It was while the army lay at Whitemarsh that Lydia 
Darrach's warning of Howe's intended attack was given. 
During this dreary time that " tried men's souls," there 
was little cause for any rejoicing such as had prompted 
Washington after the victory of the Northern Army at 
Stillwater to order, as he had on Sunday, September 28, 
by way of celebration, that "all the troops be paraded and 
served with a gill of rum per man, and that at the same 



time there be discharged 13 pieces of artillery from the 
park." On the contrary the outlook was daily becoming 
more gloomy and supplies were increasingly hard to get. 
Shoes were failing and on November 22, there is a note 
in tlie orderly book that " The Commander-in-Chief offers 
a reward of ten dollars to any person, who shall by nine 
o'clock on Monday morning produce the best substitute 
for shoes made of rawhides." In these weeks that pre- 
ceded the dreadful winter that was to follow at Valley 
Forge, the shortage of clothing was becoming acute and 
even as the soldiers retreated up the Skippack Pike on 
their way thither from Whitemarsh, Washington wrote 
that the road was stained " by the blood from the feet 
of the men in the snow." 

Closing our eyes to all these horrors of long ago, we 
can see Dawesfield as it is to-day, in an excellent state 
of preservation. The estate now belongs to Saunders 
I..ewis, a descendant of the first owner, James Morris. 
The Emlen House is owned by Antelo Devereaux. 



HE natural beauty of Philadelphia 
is much enhanced by its situation 
between two such rivers as the 
Delaware and Schuylkill. Into 
these flow many streams from the 
surrounding country which gave 
comfort and joy to the early set- 
tler. Where the two branches of the Perkiomen meet 
and directly within their forks are the mansion and mills 
famous in American Colonial history which have been 
known since 1747 as Pennypacker's Mills. 

The Philadelphia & Reading Railway has entered the 
lovely valley and the town which has sprung up is called 
Schwenkville. Passing through several hands from the 
grant of William Penn, the land in the forks came in 
1718 to Hans Joest Heijt, a yeoman and weaver of Ger- 
mantown. He was the first occupant and built a grist- 
mill upon the east bank of the Perkiomen and a house 
on the south side of the hill where about fourteen acres 
of meadow slope gracefully down to the stream. This 
was about 1720, and we hear of him again in a petition 
to the Governour, Patrick Gordon, in 1728, for relief 
from the Indians, and again in 1730, when he sold his 
land to his neighbour, John Pawling, and soon after took 
his family to the Shenandoah Valley in Virginia. Here, 
with some others, he took up one hundred and forty thou- 
sand acres and carried on a lawsuit with Lord Fairfax, 
which was decided in his favour after his death. 




The next owner of the Perkiomen tract, John Paw- 
ling, was an influential settler from Ulster County, New 
York. His oMnersliip w^as brief and uneventful. In 
three years he was dead, and after fourteen years the 
estate was gathered together from his descendants 
by Peter Pennypacker, the second son of Hendrick 
Pannebecker, a surveyor of lands for the Penns, living in 

Peter was born on the Skippack Creek in 1710, and 
married, in 1733, Elizabeth, daughter of Peter Dirck 
Keyser and his wife ]\Iargaret, of Germantown. He soon 
made his mills on the Perkiomen a centre for the Colon- 
ists. October 1, 1755, he advertised: 

Peter Pennebacker in Skippack makes known that he has built 
a fulling mill at which there is a skillful fuller named William 
Nenny. Whoever need to have anything dyed or fulled can be 
served at the customary price by William Nenney. 

From a scrap of an account book in his handwriting 
in 1755, he charges some of the neighboin's w^th sugar, 
tea, coffee, and molasses as well as with rye, hay, and 
oats, so that it is inferred that he also added a store to 
furnish local supplies. Elizabeth Drinker tells in her 
Journal how, on the way from Ephrata, August 28, 1771, 
she " dined in a ^lill House at Peter Pennybaker's on 
boiled mutton and old kidney beans " and that she " eat 
very heartily." 

In 1754 Peter Pennypacker was elected assessor of 
Philadelphia County, and in the same year joined in an 
event which affected the future of the continent. The 
French and Indian AVar led to much speculation as to 



whether the Germans would throw their influence with 
the French or the English, and upon the determination 
of this rested the future of the land. A number of the 
most representative Germans, including Peter Penny- 
packer, of Pennypacker's Mills, presented a formal ad- 
dress of welcome and loyalty to the recently appointed 
Governour, Robert Hunter Morris, and thus decided the 
matter in favour of the English. 

It was signed " in Behalf of Ourselves and Country 

During the war which ensued a portion of Braddock's 
Army marched to Pennypacker's INIills en route to join 
the main body which had come up through Virginia and 

On June 28, Peter Pennypacker died and was buried 
in the Mennonite graveyard on the Skippack. He left a 
very long will and a very long inventory followed his 
demise. His son William received the lands on the west 
side of the Perkiomen where Schwenksville now stands 
and his son Samuel received the lands and mansion on 
the east side. Samuel was born on the Skippack in IT-iG 
and came to the Mills when but a year old, there to spend 
the rest of his life. He attended the school of H. M. 
Ache, who prepared a fine bit of penwork for him in 
1758, containing a prayer, the alphabet in three forms, the 
numerals up to one hundred, the names of the months, 
the date, and the inscription. 

In 1768, Samuel Pennypacker married Hannah Ges- 
bert, and there were born to them a family of eiglit boys. 

After the Battle of the Brandywine and the unsuc- 
cessful attempt to engage at Warren Tavern in the 



Chester ^'alley, General Washington moved his army 
of eiiiht thousand Continentals and two thousand militia 
to the head of the Skippack Road at Pennypacker's INlills 
and fixed his headquarters in the house of Samuel Penny- 
packer. ^\''ashington wrote many letters from the house, 
several of which are now resting in the room in which 
they were wTitten. There were poets with the army, 
too, and one of the products of their pens is a ballad de- 
picting events lively and not improbable: 

'Twas night — rain poured — when British blades 

In number twelve or more, 

As they sat tippling apple jack 

Heard someone at the door. 

" Arise,'' he cried — 'twas Skerret spoke — 
" And trudge or will or nill, 

Twelve miles to General Washington 

At Pennypacker's Mill." 

Deep in their pots were they, these blades, 
One sprawling on the floor. 
One hiccoughing " The King, his health " 
And all gone half seas o'er. 

" Oh what a sight " — 'twas Skerret spoke — 
" For General Washington : 

A lot of British prisoners. 

Drunk every mother's son." 

And apple-jack tliat tipple base, 
Why did these heroes drain.'' 
Oh where were nobler taps that night, 
Port, sherry and champagne? 



" Arise " he cried — 'twas Skerret spoke — 
" And trudge or will or nill 

Twelve miles to General Washington, 

At Pennypacker's mill." 

So up they got or will or nill, 
Each noble British son, 
And on they went, by Skerret led, 
To General Washington. 

It rained. The red coats on their backs. 
Their skins did purple blue: 
The powder on their heads grew paste, 
Each toe its boot wore through. 

Their lace was sop, their feathers too 
Hung down like chickens' tails, 
Down hung their heads, while every knave 
His luckless fate bewails. 

" Who brought them in," said Washington, 

" Through such an awful rain? " 
Then Skerret answered to the call 
And said : " I don't complain 



I don't complain that through the rain 
I brought these roysterers high. 
But only say, though very wet, 
I never was more dry. 

Nor- port nor sherry had these lords. 
Lord knows the reason why; 
And not a drop of apple-jack 
They left for us to try." 



'* JSkfiTct, iiiv l;id,'' said Washington, 
" It pleases me to say 

That thou hast well shut in these blades, 

And dry thou shalt not stay. 

*' Skerret, my lad, tiiou art a trump, 
The ace of all the pack; 
Come into Pennypacker's Mill 
And share my apple-jack." 

Lieutenant James McMichael of the Pennsylvania 
Line also had a fancy for verse and with his jovial tem- 
perament gave colour to the camp. 

Colonel John Parke, of Delaware, while resting here 
wrote a solemn and serious elegy, and these with the 
many letters of Washington written in the camp form 
one of the most important and interesting collections of 
contemporary Hterature attached to any house in this 

When the news of the defeat of General Burgoyne 
at Bemis Heights, New York, came to Pennypacker's 
Mills it gave great joy to the occupant of the house and 
his army. The latter were drawn up on parade just 
at the side of the house on the roll of ground, and the 
park of artillery fired a salute of thirteen gims. To every 
man was given a gill of rum and they gave vent to their 
enthusiasm with three hearty cheers. 

Perhaps under the inspiration of the news, a council 
of war was called to determine whether another attack 
should he made. Washington told his officers that the 
army consisted of about eight thousand Continentals and 
tliree thousand militia and submitted the question 



whether or not to attack the enemy at once. Wayne, 
Smallwood, Potter, Irvine, and Scott were in favour of 
a bold measure. Stephen, Nash, McDougal, Sullivan, 
Knox, Greene, Muhlenberg, Sterling, Conway, and 
Armstrong, were opposed. Cadwalader and Reed did 
not vote. A compromise was decided upon in determin- 
ing to approach the enemy and seek an opportunity to 
strike a blow. This led to the Battle of Germantown. 
After the battle McMichael writes: 

We then marched up the Skippack Road to Pennypacker's 
Mill, where we betook ourselves to rest at 9 p.m. Thus hap- 
pened the memorable event of the battle of Germantown, in which 
great numbers were killed on both sides and which lasted from 5 
until 10 o'clock. That of Brandywine was not in any measure 
such a general attack, neither was the loss at that place anyway 
equivalent. I had previously undergone many fatigues but never 
any that so much overdone me as this. Had it not been for the 
fear of being taken prisoner, I should have remained on the road 
all night. I had marched in twenty four hours forty five miles, 
and in that time fought four hours, during wliich we advanced 
so furiously through buckwheat fields that it was almost an un- 
speakable fatigue. 

There is a touch of considerate courtesy on the part 
of the Commander-in-Chief in the incident related by the 
Chevalier de Pontgibaud, who was with the army: 

We for our part might almost have forgotten that we were in 
the presence of an enemy if we had not received a chance visitor. 
We were at table at headquarters, that is to say, in the Mill wliicli 
was comfortable enough, one day, when a fine sporting dog, which 
was evidently lost, came to ask for some dinner. On its collar 



were the words " General Howe." It was the British Comman- 
der's dog. It was sent back under a flag of truce, and General 
Howe replied by a warm letter of thanks to this act of courtesy 
on the part of his enemy, our General. 

And so on October 8, Washington wrote to the Presi- 
dent of Congress his last letter in the house of Samuel 
Pennypacker. Taking dowTi his great Bible with its 
brass clasps, Samuel wrote in it in German: 

On the 26th. day of September, 1777, an army of thirty 
thousand men encamped in Skippack Township, burned all the 
fences, carried away all the fodder, hay, oats and wheat, and 
took their departure the 8th. day of October, 1777. Written 
for those who come after me, by 

Samuel Pennypacker. 

The death of Samuel Pennypacker occurred Febru- 
ary 23, 1826, in his eightieth year. His son Samuel suc- 
ceeded him and spent his long life of eighty-four years 
upon the place. In 1802 he married Catharine Wire- 
man, and their daughter Anna married John R. Det- 
wiler who took the estate at the valuation put upon it by 
seven neighbours. Anna Detwiler's daughter Catharine 
married Josiah E. Hunsicker and lived in the old home- 
stead until 1900. On October 4, 1877, the one hundredth 
anniversary of the Battle of Germantown, fifteen hun- 
dred of the descendants of Henry Pennebecker assem- 
])led at the house in a great family reunion when addresses 
were made by many famous members. Returning to 
Philadelphia afterward, the train filled with people from 
the celebration plunged into a washout and the reunion 
closed amid a scene of tragic disaster. Following came 



pilgrimages of the Montgomery County Historical So- 
ciety on September 16, 1896, the Pennsylvania Society, 
Sons of the Revolution, June 17, 1899. 

In the year 1900, one hundred and forty-four acres 
of the original tract came into the possession of the Hon- 
ourable Samuel W. Pennypacker. An addition has been 
built to the northward but the original appearance has 
been preserved as well as many of the features within. 
Furniture, household, and farm implements from the early 
settlement abound, and the place is a veritable museum 
showing the life of the people through many generations. 

This is the story of Pennypacker's Mills, the only 
headquarters of General Washington remaining in the 
name of the family which owned it at the time of his 
occupancy. Important and interesting events have fol- 
lowed one another since the seating of Peter Pennypacker 
in 1747. The present owner was Governour of the Com- 
monwealth of Pennsylvania, from 1903 to 1907. 




XSEPARABLE from the verv at- 
niosphere of every old house is a 
pathos which every person feels 
whether they be fullv conscious of it 
or not. It is the pathos of the gen- 
erations of human lives lived therein. 
It is a sense of the human tragedies 
and comedies that have there been enacted in the continu- 
ous drama of existence, the tragic side, perhaps, being the 
more apparent. The sum total of all the follies and frail- 
ties of the men and women who have dwelt within its 
walls, their graces and virtues, their joys and sorrows, 
their loves and hates — all these we grasp by a kind of in- 
tuitive perception. 

Of no old house can this be said more truly than 
of Graeme Park. Its successive owners have had careers 
of unusual dramatic interest. Sir William Keith, the 
scion of an ancient Scottish family, by a freak of for- 
tune became Governour of Penn's Colony in 1717, his 
personality and conduct having strongly commended 
liim to those who controlled affairs. His geniality and 
generally amiable qualities of character made him at 
once i)()puhir with the people and always kept him so. 
At first he was acceptable to the Proprietaries, but his 
sympathies falling naturally with the people and, in time, 
!)eing arrayed against the Proprietary interests, he was 
superseded by Governour Patrick Gordon, in 1726. 
In 1718 Sir William Keith bought a tract of twelve 


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hundred acres in Horsham Township, Philadelphia, after- 
ward Montgomery County, at a spot about one mile north- 
west from the present Doylestown and Willow Grove 
Pike, some nineteen miles from Philadelphia, a place then 
looked upon as the outermost edge of civilisation. The 
Doylestown Pike was built expressly for his convenience. 
The land was mostly in timber and the nearest approach 
hitherto had been by Old York Road, which had been 
surveyed in 1711. 

Sir William began to build in 1721 and, it seems, 
finished his house in 1722, as the old weather-vane of 
wrought-iron bears that date cut in stencil after the ini- 
tials W. K. The house is over sixty feet long, twenty- 
five feet wide, and is three storeys in height. The walls 
are of rich brown field stone carefully laid and fitted, and 
are more than two feet thick, while over the doors and 
windows, whose dimensions are thoroughly characteristic 
of the date of erection, selected stones were laid in flat- 
tened arches. At the north end of the building is a great 
hall or drawing-room, twenty-one feet square, with walls 
wainscotted and panelled from floor to ceiling, a height 
of fourteen feet. The fireplace in the hall is faced ^vith 
marble brought from abroad, while in the other rooms 
Dutch tiles were used for the same purpose. On each 
floor are three rooms. Stairs and banisters are of heavy 
white oak and all the other woodwork is of unusual beauty 
executed in a simple and vigorous design. 

Quarters for the servants and various domestic offices 
were in separate buildings, that have now disappeared, 
leaving the whole of the hall for the use of its occupants. 
Lofty sentinel sycamores in front of the mansion indi- 



cate wliat was once the entrance to the courtyard or fore- 
court. All around are ancient trees, many of them 
(louhtless survivors from the primeval forest. Not far 
away is the great " lifting stone," a mushroom-shaped 
boulder with which Sir William always tested the strength 
of an applicant for work. If he could not lift it — and 
it is of substantial weight — he was not employed. 

After Sir William was deposed from his governour- 
ship, he retired to his Horsham plantation and spent 
nearly all his time there. Here he lived in a state becom- 
ing his quality, maintaining a style hitherto unknown in 
Philadelphia and more resembling the manorial regime 
of some of the wealthier southern plantations, where Sir 
William had been on his first arrival in America. When 
he drove to Philadelphia, he made the journey with his 
coach-and-four with outriders in truly regal fashion. 

Although a Scotch Presbyterian, Sir William was a 
constant attendant at Christ Church, when in the city, 
and showed an active and substantial interest in its work 
and support. An item in the old vestry records of Feb- 
ruary 3, 1718, says: 

Colonel Keith has been pleased, at a considerable charge, not 
only to erect a spacious pew right before the altar, to be appro- 
priated in all time to come for the conveniency and use of the 
Governour and his family for the time being, but also to promise 
and voluntarily agree to pay the yearl3^ rent of £5 per annum for 
the same, to the use of the church. 

In keeping up his establishment, lavish entertaining, 
and bounty to the poor, he spent all his income and much 
more besides. Governour Spottswood, of Virginia, ac- 


1 J » 1 > 3 1 


curately characterised Keith when he said " that he was 
of an honourable family, a baronet, good-natured and 
obliging, and spends, with a reputation to the place, all 
he gets of the country." An inventory of Sir William's 
household effects and chattels from his plantation at 
Horsham will give some notion of the luxury that pre- 
vailed there: 

a silver punchbowl, ladle and strainer, 4 salvers, 3 casters, and 
33 spoons, 70 large pewter plates, 14 smaller plates, 6 basins, 6 
brass pots with covers ; china ware ; 13 different sizes of bowls, 6 
complete tea sets, 2 dozen chocolate cups, 20 dishes of various 
sizes, 4 dozen plates, 6 mugs, 1 dozen fine coffee cups 
delft, stone and glass ware: 18 jars, 12 venison pots, 6 white 
stone tea sets, 12 mugs, 6 dozen plates and 12 fine wine decan- 
ters ... 24 Holland sheets, 20 common sheets, 50 table 
cloths, 12 dozen napkins, 60 bedsteads, 144 chairs, 32 tables, 3 
clocks, 15 looking-glasses, 10 dozen knives and forks ... 4 
coach horses, 7 saddle horses, 6 working horses, 2 mares and one 
colt; 4 oxen, 15 cows, 4 bulls, 6 calves, 31 sheep and 20 hogs. 
A large glass coach, 2 chaises, 2 waggons, 1 wain. 

Besides these there were also quantities of plate and 
furniture too great to mention specifically. 

His household consisted of his wife. Lady Ann Keith, 
his step-daughter, Ann Diggs, his four sons, his cousin. 
Doctor Thomas Graeme, who afterward married Ann 
Diggs, and fourteen slaves. Unlike Sir William, Graeme 
seems to have been able to hold on to money and yet live 
as became his rank. 

In 1727 Sir William went back to England on per- 
sonal concerns, and it is conjectured that he was tempted 
thither by an offer of preferment on the part of the Pro- 



prietaries, wlio feared his influence and popularity in the 
Colony. lie served as a member of Parliament for 
Aberdeen, and in 1738 published a " History of Vir- 
ginia " at London. At this time his financial troubles 
had increased and he was imprisoned in the Old Bailey 
for debt. Although released for a season, he ultimately 
died there in 1749. Benjamin Franklin said of* 
this generous, talented, amiable, but most unfortunate 
gentleman : 

differing from the great body of the people whom he governed 
in religion and manners, he acquired their esteem and confidence. 
If he sought popularity, he promoted public happiness, and his 
courage in resisting the demands of the Proprietaries may be 
ascribed to a higher motive than private interest. 

Before leaving America Sir William deeded his es- 
tate to his wife, Lady Ann, and mortgaged all his house- 
hold goods to his kinsman and son-in-law, Doctor Graeme. 
Lady Keith conveyed her entire interest in the Horsham 
plantation to her son-in-law. Doctor Graeme, in 1737, so 
that he then became the sole owner. Until her death, 
however. Lady Ann continued to live with her daughter 
and Doctor Graeme. 

The second master of Graeme Park, in addition to 
having a large and lucrative practice, held many impor- 
tant official positions. He was appointed to the Naval 
Office in 1719, in 1726 became a member of the Council, 
in 1731 he was made one of the three justices of the Su- 
preme Court, in 1732 a " Justice of Oyer and Terminer 
and General Gaol Delivery for Philadelphia, Bucks, and 


J > > > » > J 




Chester Counties," and besides these, many other posts 
of honour or responsibilitj\ 

At first Doctor Graeme lived at Graeme Park only 
in summer, but toward the end of his life spent most of 
his time there. He did much to improve the estate and 
enclosed a park of three hundred acres, double-ditched 
and double-hedged, which, said he, in a letter to his in- 
timate friend, Thomas Penn, " as a piece of beauty and 
ornament to a dwelling I dare venture to say that no 
nobleman in England but would be proud to have it on 
his seat." 

Sadness and ill-health clouded Doctor Graeme's de- 
clining years. The death of his wife in 1765 was a blow 
from which he never fully recovered. She was a woman 
of remarkable accomplishments and of great personal 
charm, and as long as she lived all the eminent people 
of her day found Graeme Park a most hospitable arwl 
delightful place to visit. Among the famous men who 
were frequent guests there may be mentioned Elias 
Boudinot, Francis Hopkinson, Richard Stockton, Doc- 
tor Benjamin Rush, George Meade, Benjamin Franklin, 
Thomas Penn, Andrew Hamilton, Reverend Richard 
Peters, Bishop White, Reverend Jacob Duche, and John 
Penn. Besides these, many distinguished visitors from 
abroad stayed there from time to time. 

Elizabeth Graeme, Doctor Graeme's favourite daugh- 
ter, a woman of brilliant parts, had become an invalid 
and had gone abroad to visit her kinsfolk in hope that 
the change might restore her health. She received marked 
attention from many titled admirers, was presented to 
King George III and " particularly noticed by him," 



and was ** sought by the most celebrated literary gentle- 
men who flourished in England at the time." After her 
return home she managed her father's household. It 
was then that she met Henry Hugh Fergusson, a man 
much younger than herself, to whom she was afterward 
clandestinely married at Old Swedes Church. When she 
was about to break the news of this match to her father 
at Graeme Park and was waiting at the window as he 
came up the avenue from his walk before breakfast, the 
old doctor fell and died suddenly. 

Mrs. Fergusson made over a large part of her for- 
tune to her husband who, at the outbreak of the Revolu- 
tion, deserted her and took refuge under the British flag. 
Graeme Park was confiscated on the ground of Fergus- 
son being a Loyalist, and hence attainted of high treason, 
but was ultimately restored to IVIrs. Fergusson by act of 
Assembly. In 1791 her nephew, a certain Doctor 
William Smith, bought Graeme Park, and after disposing 
of several tracts sold the balance along with the Hall 
to Samuel Penrose, whose descendants still own it. 



HE IVY stands in the midst of the 
village of Shoemakertown, now 
called Ogontz, in Montgomery- 
County at the corner of Old York 
Road and Church Road. The 
smaller part of the house was built 
about 1682 by Richard Wall, who 
bought six hundred acres of land in Cheltenham Town- 
ship, then Philadelphia County, extending across the 
township from the Abington township line on the north 
to the Bristol line on the south and covering the site of 
that which later became known as Shoemakertown. 

He had married Joane Wheel, August 1, 1658, at 
Gloucester Monthly Meeting of Friends in England and 
came to this country in 1682 with a company of Friends 
from Cheltenham, England, his wife, his son Richard 
Wall, Jr., and his wife Rachel and their daughter Sarah. 
His certificate was received by Philadelphia INIonthly 
Meeting and reads: 

Richard Wall, his certificate was read in the Monthly Meeting 
of Philadelphia and accepted, which was given him by the Monthly 
Meeting held at ye house of Edward Edwards, of Stock Orchard 
in ye County of Gloucester the 26th. Day of the 4th. Month 
1682, and subscribed by Charles Toney, Giles King, Edwd 
Waters, Joseph Underhill and several others. 

The son, Richard Wall, Jr., bought one hundred 
acres of land adjoining his father's and also a large tract 




in Chester County. He died intestate February 6, 1089. 
Friends' jNfeetings in these early days were held at 
the houses of the members and Richard Wall's house was 
so selected as the following minute shows: 

At a Mo-Meeting held at Sarah Searys, ye 3d of 10 mo. 1683. 
At request of Some ffriends belonging to this Meeting A Meeting 
was Settled Near Cheltenham at the house of Richard Walln. 

The chief historical interest in this house is, there- 
fore, the fact that it was one of the very earliest meeting- 
houses in Philadelphia County whose location can with 
certainty be ascertained, and the only one still standing. 
The Boarded Meeting-house erected in Philadelphia the 
latter part of 1682 antedates it, but its location is un- 
known, while the Bank Meeting was not built until 1685. 
It would also seem that Richard Wall's house was the 
oldest meeting place of the Society of Friends still stand- 
ing on this continent, although there is one on Conanicut 
Island, Rhode Island, which has some claim to this dis- 
tinction. It was soon made a Monthly Meeting as the 
records show; 

At A mo-Meeting, ye 23d. of 12th. mo. 1685. It is agreed 
that this Mo-Meeting, for time to come shall be held at three 
Several places, that is to say ye next to be held at ye house of 
Richard Walln : and ye next at John Harts and ye Next at Ox- 
ford, and so in Course. 

The next year it was settled " at ye house of Richard 
Wall ye Elder: on ye last 5th. day of ye ^lonth:" Many 
marriages of the early settlers were solemnised at " the 
house of Kichard Wall," it being the custom among 



Friends then, as now, that such events should invariably 
occur in a Meeting for Worship of the Society. The first 
was that of James Pratt and Mary Brodwell, Septem- 
ber 4, 1689. Perhaps the most important of these early 
marriages was that of Richard's only granddaughter and 
heir, Sarah Wall, to George Shoemaker, Jr., the certifi- 
cate of which is now in the possession of the Historical 
Society of Pennsylvania. George was the son of George 
Shoemaker and Sarah, his wife, who sailed with their 
seven children, in the ship Jefferies, Thomas Arnold, 
master, from London, landing at Chester, January 20, 
1688. The father died at sea of the smallpox, but the 
rest established themselves at Germantown and were the 
progenitors of the branch of that family most numerous 
to-day. Another important marriage in this house was 
that of Joseph Mather, of Bucks County, and Elizabeth 
Russell, on June 8, 1697. To this certificate we find at- 
tached the names of John Russell, Henry Baker, Phineas 
Pemberton, Samuel Richardson, Evan Morris, John 
Jones, Isaac Norris, and many other prominent Friends, 
ancestors of their families in this country. Joseph 
Mather was the son of Richard and Elizabeth Mather of 
RadclifFe, Lancashire, England, came over with the Pem- 
bertons, and was the progenitor of the Mather family in 
these parts. Elizabeth Russell was the daughter of John 
Russell who bought three hundred acres extending across 
Cheltenham Township near Wall's. At his death it de- 
scended to his only child, Elizabeth, and so became known 
as the Mather tract. On the other side of Richard Wall 
was the home and land of Toby Leech, a fellow-immi- 
grant from Cheltenham, England. Toby was a very 



proniiiieiit man, a Provincial Councillor, and the owner, 
at his death, of several thousand acres in the State. It 
was to this little gathering of Friends that the first pro- 
test against slavery was addressed by the Germantown 
Friends, headed by Francis Daniel Pastorius, February 
18, 1688. 

A few years after the marriage of his granddaughter 
Richard Wall made his will. That he was a deeply con- 
cerned Friend is attested by the Meeting being held in 
his house and by the certificate granted to him by the 
Monthly Meeting, September 24, 1690, to " travel 
towards Mar3dand." The opening clause of his will is 
of an earnest religious nature and he then proceeds to 
leave his property to his 'vvife and thereafter to his grand- 
daughter, Sarah Shoemaker. If the latter should die he 
bequeaths his estate to his Monthly Meeting and fur- 
ther directs that a tract of six acres at the south end of 
his plantation, and now lying on Cheltenham Avenue, be 
given to the Meeting for a burying place. 

He died January 26, 1698, and his Avife, December 2, 
1701, and both were buried in the ground above spoken of. 

These grounds have long gone by the name of the 
Shoemaker Burying Ground, so many of that name hav- 
ing been buried there. About a half acre of the six is 
enclosed by a stone wall and is now owned and cared for 
by the Abington Monthly Meeting which, in 1700, suc- 
ceeded Cheltenham Meeting held at The Ivy, through 
gift of John Barnes, of one hundred and fifty acres near 
the village of Jenkintown. 

In those days country people wore leather breeches, 
which were very suitable for the rough work about the 



farms. In the summer these garments were hung away 
in the attic. One day a Friend suddenly arose in the 
gallery of Abington Meeting and exclaiming, " Friends, 
the word of the Lord is in my mouth but the devil is in 
my breeches," made a dash for the door. Bees had made 
a hive in his clothes during their retirement and the 
warmth of his body had brought them out. 

George Shoemaker was one of those who petitioned 
the Provincial Council, in 1711, for the laying out of the 
Old York Road, and was appointed on the jury to do it. 
The course is described in the order of the council thus: 

To begin at the side of the River Delaware opposite to John 
Reading's landing, from thence by the most direct and conve- 
nient course to Buckingham meeting house, and from thence the 
most direct and convenient course through the lands of Thomas 
Watson, and from thence ye most direct and convenient course 
to Stephen Jemkins on the west side of his house, and from thence 
the most direct and convenient course by the house late of Richard 
Wall, now in possession of George Shoemaker and so forward 
by the most direct and convenient courses to Phila. 

The first stage between New York and Philadelphia 
was, however, not set up until 1756, and made the run 
in three days at two pence a mile. On summer days the 
stages usually made forty miles, but in winter, when the 
snow was deep and the darkness came on early in the 
afternoon, rarely more than twenty-five. At one season 
of the year the traveller was oppressed by the heat and 
half choked by the dust, while at another he could scarce 
keep from freezing. Generally put down at an inn about 
ten at night, cramped and weary, he ate a frugal supper 



and betook himself to bed, with a notice to the landlord 
that he would be called at three the next morning. At 
this time, rain, snow, or fair, he was forced to rise and 
make ready by the light of a horn-lantern or a farthing 
candle for another eighteen-hour ride, when horses were 
changed. Sometimes, too, he was forced to get down 
and lift the coach out of a quagmire or a rut. Thomas 
Twining, travelling in America in 1795, says that the 
waggon in which he rode was a long car with four benches 
holding nine passengers and a driver. The light roof 
was supported by eight slender pillars and from it hung 
three leather curtains rolled up at the pleasure of the 
passengers. There was no place for luggage except in 
front of the passengers, which made the riding very 

George Shoemaker, besides managing his farm of 
nearly one thousand acres in the heart of what is now 
Chelten Hills, was also a tanner. At his death the in- 
ventory of his estate showed eleven cows, ten horses, nine 
pigs, and forty-one sheep, besides a large amount of hay, 
grain, hides, and implements. He had thirteen children, 
and they married into the families of Levering, Penrose, 
Conrad, White, Cleaver, De La Plain, Thompson, 
Williams, Roberts, Phij^ps, and Livezey, so that his de- 
scendants are very numerous, a grandson, Benjamin 
Shoemaker, becoming Mayor of Philadelphia and a mem- 
ber of the Provincial Council. George's son Isaac mar- 
ried Dorothy Penrose, who, soon after her husband's 
death, entered into an agreement, November 6, 1746, with 
Richard Mather, the husband of her sister, Sarah Pen- 
rose, and John Tyson, of Abington, to build the mill which 


THE I\^ 

still stands adjacent to the house " opposite ye said Doro- 
thy's garden, at the place of said crick, commonly called 
and known by the name of ye Sheeps Washing Place." 
Her descendants operated the mill for the making of 
flour until about 1846, when the estate was sold to 
Charles Bosler, of Cheltenham, who passed it on to his 
son, the late Joseph Bosler, Assistant Treasurer of the 
United States at Philadelphia. Mrs. Bosler still lives at 
The Ivy, and the mill, modernised and enlarged, is still 



HE Swedes contributed no quota 
of Pennsylvania's population com- 
parable to the other elements that 
entered into it, but their benefit to 
the Colony is not to be measured 
by a numerical yardstick. Even 
though their settlements along the 
Delaware persisted after their political severance from 
the parent country, they were soon merged in the life of 
later and more numerous settlers. When they disap- 
peared as a social and political entity, however, they left 
ineradicable traces of their brief occupation and the com- 
munities that once owed allegiance to the Swedish Crown 
are the richer for their presence; their influence through 
their valued descendants has persisted to our own day 
with truly characteristic Scandinavian vigour. 

The few Swedish buildings that remain belong almost 
altogether to the seventeenth century, and of these Ury 
House at Fox Chase is one, a building much changed 
and added to as the years have passed but, nevertheless, 
Swedish at the core. Almost hidden amid ancient trees, 
it stands on gently rolling land near Pine Road. As to 
its earlier history, the date of its building, and tlie pur- 
pose for which it was designed, there are no authentic 
records and we can say little more than that it was appa- 
rently meant for a trading post, or a fort, or perhaps 
both. We do know that Swedish settlers came up the 
Pennypack at a very early period and trafficked with the 



natives, and it is more than likely that Ury House owed 
its origin to them. 

Tradition says that it was at first a fort built by 
refugees in 1645. For this there is absolutely no war- 
rant. The Swedes do not seem to have been in the im- 
mediate neighbourhood as early as 1645, and if they 
were they were certainly not numerous enough to war- 
rant building a fort; furthermore, it is rather difficult 
to explain from whom or from what they could have been 
refugees in 1645. As far as the Indians were concerned, 
a fort so near the older settlement was unnecessary, for 
relations with the red men were friendly. It is far more 
probable, from what we know of contemporary history, 
that it was a combined trading-post and block-house built 
some years later, perhaps between 1655 and 1665, and 
that the defence for which it was needed was not against 
the Indians, but against the Dutch, with whom there were 
frequent hostilities about that time. However, be that as 
it may, there can be little doubt that Ury considerably 
antedates the coming of Penn to the Delaware River 
and its fertile shores. 

The stout-hearted Scandinavian Colonists would not 
recognise Ury House could they see it to-day. The 
whole ground floor of the original building is now the 
dining-room. Tremendously thick walls convince the be- 
holder that they might have successfully withstood the 
battering of far more formidable engines of assault than 
were likely to have been used against them. For the 
sake of greater height and ventilation, the low-raftered 
ceiling of the dining-room was raised at one of the many 
stages of alteration, the upper part, of course, being in- 



corporated with the rest of the bedrooms on the second 
Hoor. Tlie woik of the Swedes has been spoken of as a 
square tower built of stone quarried hard by. Accord- 
ing to tradition preserved in print by a neighbourhood 
writer, the 

tower consisted of a curious cellar, approached by solid stone 
steps, leading to a door of wrought iron, supported on either 
side by tremendous stone drillings. Over the cellar was a square 
room from which a steep stair^vay led to another, and over it, 
with sloping roofs, and reached by a very rickety ladder, was a 

In the cellar was also a great fireplace with a con- 
trivance evidently designed for melting lead and mould- 
ing bullets. 

Early in the eighteenth century, Ury was enlarged 
by an addition of some size, built with the same sub- 
stantial solidity as the older part. Several cast-iron fire- 
backs, one of them bearing the English arms, and 
another with a plain scroll with the date 1728, have been 
brought to light from time to time in this newer part of 
the house. At each successive stage of the upward and 
outward growth since Colonial days, the original lines 
have become more and more obliterated, so that from the 
outside it is well-nigh impossible to distinguish one por- 
tion from another and assign to each its proper period, 
especially as the whole building has been stuccoed and 
the colour freshened now and again. It is very nearly as 
diflicult inside as it is outside to tell which is which, be- 
cause of the changes dictated on various occasions by the 
exigencies of the owners. These many alterations have 


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given a refreshing irregularity, and upstairs the inequality 
of levels keeps one constantly on the lookout to avoid 
going on his nose as he dodges around unexpected cor- 
ners and takes first one step up and then perhaps two 
down, threading his way through perplexing passages. 
The entrance, under a square-pillared portico, through 
a wide doorway into a low-ceilinged hall, marks the meet- 
ing point of the oldest portion of the house with the 
eighteenth-century addition to the west. 

Immediately around the house venerable shade trees 
spread their branches, while the approach from the road 
is through a long straight avenue of lofty pines, planted 
more than a century ago. Southeast of the house and 
sheltered b)^ it from the sweep of the northwest winds, is 
the garden, enclosed by a high, thick box hedge. A box- 
edged walk shaded by a grape-covered trellis runs the 
entire length of the garden from east to west and divides 
it into squal sections. The northern half is laid out in 
geometrically shaped flower beds, bordered with box and 
separated by narrow gravel paths. The box is so old and 
so luxuriant, and has grown so far beyond its original 
limits, that the flower garden might more fittingly be 
called the box garden. Looking in from outside, the 
labyrinth of squares, circles, and intersecting diagonals 
seems almost a solid expanse of glossy green studded 
with patches of gay-coloured bloom. Only tall flowers 
like phlox and larkspiu's and hollyhocks can lift their 
heads high enough to show to advantage, but for the 
pleasure of such glorious box one is willing to forego 
many flowers which, after all, they can have elsewhere. 
The boxwood of Ury was a source of just pride to its 



o^^Tiers in Colonial times, and a century and a half of 
orowth has not lessened the esteem in which it is held. 
South of the trellised walk is the kitchen garden divided 
into plots by borders of box. 

Beyond the garden, and a little way down a gentle 
slope, is the barn, a great stone structure with ample 
room to hold all the crops of the hundred or more acres 
of farmland belonging to Ury. It is said that in old 
times the barn was connected with the cellar of the house 
by a secret vaulted stone passage. What appears to 
have been a doorway in the cellar wall has been blocked 
up with masonry for many years, and the present genera- 
tion can say nothing with certainty about the existence 
of the passage. The doorway may simply have led into 
a cave for roots or a wine cellar, such as are frequently 
to be found in the subterranean regions of old houses and 
which hnaginative people are prone to believe the begin- 
ning of secret tunnels. The story goes, however, that 
there really is a passage and that, when it was last opened, 
there was found in it the skeleton of a man, presumably 
one of the soldiers imprisoned in the barn at one time 
during the Revolutionary War, and either thrust in there 
with foul intent or else overcome by death while trying 
to escape from his captors. 

In all these years Ury has sheltered many distin- 
guished men under its roof, and sundry tales of their 
visits have been preserved. Tradition says that Wash- 
ington, shortly after the evacuation of Valley Forge, 
some say on the evening of the same day, supped at Ury. 
One of the maids was so flustered by the presence of the 
illustrious guest that she mistook salt for sugar and pre- 



sented his Excellency with a bowl of salt with which he 
" sugared " his strawberries. Great was the mortification 
of the household when the mistake was discovered. 

As the cradle of a great school, Ury House is endeared 
to many. Within its walls began the work that after- 
wards became St. Luke's, Bustleton, and has now grown 
into St. Luke's, Wayne. 





I^N the year 1748, Elizabeth Coates 
Paschall, the widow of Joseph Pas- 
chajl, built the original portion of the 
house at her farm, Cedar Grove. 
Cedar Grove lies in the Northern 
Liberties in a neighbourhood now 
known as Harrogate, near Frank- 
ford, M^ithin a short distance of the Frankford Road. 

Elizabeth was the daughter of Thomas Coates, that 
same Thomas who, before his death, gave each of his 
children a golden Jacobus with injunctions never to spend 
it unless actually in need of bread. His descendants 
prospered, but only one of these coins is in existence. It 
is the coin that came through the Cedar Grove line, and 
is carefully treasured as a precious heirloom. 

The tract of which Elizabeth Coates Paschall ob- 
tained a part was originally acquired in 1714 by Thomas 
Coates and adjoined the lands of Chalkley Hall. The 
part of the house built in 1748 consisted of two rooms on 
the first floor — the present dining-room and the room 
back of it — two more on the second, and the attic space 
above. This may seem an exceedingly small and unpre- 
tentious edifice, but it should be borne in mind that it 
was not meant at that time for a dwelling house but was 
designed to be used merely as a shelter for rest and re- 
freshment when the owner or any member of the family 
might be spending the day at the farm. 

In this respect Cedar Grove was like many other 


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seats that later grew to more imposing proportions and 
became permanent residences, at least for the summer 
months. In the first instance they were, as they were 
called at the time, merely " plantation houses." When 
bedrooms were not needed or any of the other apartments 
that would be indispensable in a place of permanent 
residence, the " plantation house " had no cause to be a 
pretentious affair. There were two reasons for this cus- 
tom of spending only the day at the countryseat. In 
the first place, there was no great need of countryseats, 
for Philadelphia was so small that it was but a matter of 
a few minutes to get out of the heart of the town into 
the open country. In the second place there seemed 
to be a widely prevalent notion in the minds of city people 
that it was unhealthful to pass the night in the country 
because of the humours arising from the soil. For these 
two reasons it was quite a usual thing, though by no means 
an invariable practice, for many people did live in their 
countryseats all the same, to drive out from the city, 
spend the day at the plantation, and drive back again at 
nightfall. Such was the wont of Elizabeth Coates 
Paschall for many years; the drive was not of irksome 
length, for her home in the centre of the city was only 
five miles distant. 

At length, in 1799, tlie second part of the house was 
added, containing the parlour and the present kitchen 
and the rooms above them, and from that time Cedar 
Grove was used as a regular place of residence during 
the summer. The addition of 1799 was somewhat larger 
than the first structure but similar in design. This cir- 
cumstance produced a remarkable conformation of the 



roof. The first house had a pitched roof, and when the 
parallel addition was made it would have necessitated 
either two pitched roofs side by side or else one very 
high one. To avoid either solution the pitch was flat- 
tened from the height of the old ridgepole and thus a 
gambrel roof was produced. This origin of the gambrel 
is quite as feasible as those more usually assigned, and 
in this instance, at least, unquestionably offers the true 
explanation of the much controverted question of the 
origin of the gambrel. Wliile speaking of the roof it is 
interesting to note that the little framework or overlook 
that shows in the picture was mentioned in the insurance 
survey of the property in 1792. 

Built of native grey stone the masonry of Cedar 
Grove is most substantial and capable of withstanding 
the ravages of time for centuries to come. The house is 
remarkable in that it has no hallway. Its history, how- 
ever, readily explains this peculiarity. One enters di- 
rectly into either the dining-room or the parlour by large 
doors from the piazza. The former apartment with its 
panelled woodwork from floor to ceiling and its generous 
window seats is particularly engaging. In one corner 
a door in the panelling opens into the enclosed staircase 
leading to the floors above. Cedar Grove after one gen- 
eration in the Paschall family passed into the possession 
of the ]\Iorrises through Sarah Paschall, the daughter of 
Elizabeth Coates and Joseph Paschall, who married 
Isaac Wistar Morris, in whose family it is still o^vned. 

Until 1888, when the present owners, the great-great- 
grandcliildren of Elizabeth Coates Paschall, found them- 
selves obliged to vacate Cedar Grove because of the rapid 



encroachments of the city with its noisy factories and 
screaming railroads, the original furniture had never been 
removed from the house and in many instances from the 
rooms where it had first been set up. The rooms were 
all charming in their simple elegance, but none of them, 
perhaps, had the same vital interest as the kitchen, for 
there all the Colonial culinary arrangements were retained 
in use up to the day of departure. Neither range nor 
boiler ever found their way into Cedar Grove. All the 
cooking was done over an open wood fire in the great 
fireplace where hung a full complement of cranes, caul- 
drons, and all other antique cooking paraphernalia. The 
fire was fed with wood cut from a strip of the primeval 
forest on the premises. Meat was roasted in a tin 
kitchen set before the flames and tasted the better for the 
exposure to the fire, and the bread was baked in a big 
Dutch oven alongside the fireplace. On washdays a fire 
was kindled beneath a great copper boiler that had its 
place beside the oven. On the long dresser were rows 
of India China platters and vegetable dishes, while on a 
little shelf above the fireplace was ranged a goodly array 
of sadirons. Until 1888 the kitchen of Cedar Grove 
was in every particular typical of the best kitchens of 
Colonial days, and we know that in those kitchens some 
marvellous dinners were prepared, the like of which could 
not be excelled. Outside, around three sides of the house, 
were wide, low-studded, vine-covered piazzas with floor 
sloping to within a few inches of the ground so that one 
could step easily from the porch to the lawn. At one 
corner of the porch stood a pump over an excellent spring 
from which was fetched all the water used in the house 

21 S21 


as no pipes were ever introduced into the building. 
When guests arrived it was their wont to get a cool re- 
freshing draught at the pump and to wash the dr ^.t from 
their hands in the old pewter basin that always stood 
alongside. This basin, for the sake of sentiment, is care- 
fully preserved, and despite its one-time thickness it is 
literally almost washed through after long years of the 
successive lavings of the hands of nearly everybody of 
note in Philadelphia for a good many generations. A 
large family connexion and a genial spirit of hospitality 
that reached to hosts of friends brought frequent visitors 
to Cedar Grove. Sunday afternoon in Philadelphia has 
always been a time consecrated to social amenities and 
is still a favourite occasion for visiting. Cedar Grove, 
we may be sure, always had its full quota of Sunday 
callers, for it was a justly favourite destination for city 
folk driving out from to\Mi. They came on horseback 
and in " chairs " or chaises, and Nicholas Wain, in the 
days of his godless vanity, used to arrive in a resplendent 
yellow chariot. The guests' habit of going straightway 
for a draught from the pump was not an idle one. The 
water of this neighbourhood has long been noted for its 
valuable properties and the name Harrogate was given 
because the analysis of the springs was the same as 
that of Harrogate waters in England. Harrogate Inn 
nearby, which was established because of the waters, or 
at least took its name from them, is particularly inter- 
esting because of the tradition that makes it the refuge 
of the actors during their earliest engagements in Phila- 
delphia. They seemingly found difficulty in securing 


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kuciik.n at ckdak (juuvj; 
Showing ..1,1 "till kitchiT." and appiiriilus for op.-n fir.- cooking 


lodgings in the citj^ and perforce betook themselves to 
Frankford where prejudice was less rancorous. An amus- 
ing chapter might be written upon the festivities that used 
to take place at Harrogate Inn in connexion with its 
dancing pavilion. When the place was in the heyday of 
its prosperity, rosy-cheeked, fair-haired German lads and 
lasses, for whom Monday was the hebdomadal holiday, 
would resort thither weekly. They usually arrived in 
the morning, drank beer, danced and, altogether, had a 
serenely happy time. In the afternoon an Irish contin- 
gent from (Port Richmond would appear, previously for- 
tified for the long journey from beyond Gunner's Run 
(something more than a mile) by sundry repeated im- 
bibings of whiskey. Their aim was to cut out the 
" Dutchies," as they called them, gain for themselves the 
smiles and favour of the Teuton maids, and supplant the 
German waltz by the Irish jig on the dancing floor. Need- 
less to say confusion and heartburnings, if nothing worse, 
always resulted — worse did almost invariably follow and 
added the testimony of broken pates to the unwisdom of 
mixing drinks. This racial strife was, of course, later 
than Colonial times, but it deserves some mention in the 
story of this vicinage that has retained so much of its 
primitive character. 

The garden at Cedar Grove is of the sort that can be 
found nowhere else save about an ancient house Avhere 
sweet and sacred memories linger like the scents of the 
old-fashioned flowers blooming in the borders. The beds 
are edged with box-bushes thick-grown enough to sit on. 
Back of the house is a trellised arbour in the rose gar- 



den and all about it blow in profusion century-old 
damask roses of marvellous perfume, fragrant sweetbriar, 
moss roses, tea roses, and a score of others whose names 
are all but forgotten amid the motley throng of modern 
blooms. Bv the kitchen is a wonderful old milk-house 
in whose cool, mysterious depths the water bubbles 
through a marble basin and chills the pans of rising cream. 
Cedar Grove retains to-day its pristine mien and though 
the city's onward march has made it uncomfortable and 
even impossible of tenancy, it still breathes the spirit of 
the generations who lived quiet, orderly. God-fearing 
lives under its roof. It is a place replete with gentle 
memories, memories as peaceful as the old pale pink roses 
in its garden, and its brooding charm seems to tell of the 
comfort and contentment that reigned perennially on its 




f) UST after passing Frankford Junc- 
tion, from the train windows can be 
seen the upper part of a venerable 
building surrounded by trees and 
situated down in the Y formed by 
the divergent embankments of the 
New Y^ork division of the Pennsyl- 
vania Railroad and the branch turning off to the Dela- 
ware River Bridge. This ancient dwelling near the banks 
of the Frankford Creek is Chalkley Hall. In its happier 
days before the encroachments of railroads and industrial 
plants, it was one of the fairest and stateliest seats of all 
the region round the city. 

The main part of Chalkley Hall, erected about 1776, 
is an imposing square structure of cream-coloured Man- 
chester stone brought from England as ballast. It is 
three storeys in height, with a hipped roof topped by full- 
throated square chimneys. A range of five windows ex- 
tends across the broad front, the central portion of which, 
embracing the three middle windows, stands forth some- 
what beyond the rest of the front wall and is surmounted 
by a pediment whose summit rises to the ridge of the 
main roof. At the corners of the offset and of the 
building, pilasters rise from ground to cornice, while belt 
courses between the storeys traverse the field of the wall. 
Within the great hallway is a wonderfully con- 
structed staircase and spacious chambers on either side. 
The iron-pillared verandah over the main door was an 



unfortunate addition of some fifty years ago — in the best 
taste of its day, to be sure, but that is saying very little. 

To the west is a low, two-storey wing with hipped 
roof pierced by dormers. Its front is lighted by a row 
of seven square windows, so that its length, as may be 
thereby inferred, is considerable. This wing is the older 
portion of the house and was built prior to 1723. 

Thomas Chalkley, merchant, ship-owner and Quaker 
missionary, who established the plantation and built the 
old house, says in his diary: 

I was born on tlic 3rd day of the Tliird month, 1675, in 
Southwark [London] and descended of honest and rehgious pa- 
rents [the strictest of Friends] who were very careful of me, 
and brought me up in the fear of the Lord; and oftentimes coun- 
selled me to sobriety, and reproved me for wantonness ; and that 
light spirit which is incident to youth, they were careful to 
nip in the bud: . . . When between eight and ten years of 
age, my father . . . sent me ... to school 
in the suburbs of London. I went mostly hx myself, and many 
and various were the exercises I went through by beatings and 
stonings along the streets, being distinguished to the people by 
the badge of plainness which my parents put upon me . 
About this time the Lord began to work strongly on my mind 
by his grace, insomuch that I could not forbear reproving those 
lads that swore . . . one time I remember being among- some 
men, one of whom I had reproved . . . Being convicted in 
their consciences tliat what I said was true, they were all silent 
and wondered that I, being so young, could speak in such a 
manner; in which I remember, I had great peace and good satis- 
faction ; . . . Notwithstanding I hated to hear wicked 
words, I loved play exceedingly, being persuaded there was no 
harm in that, if we used no bad words ... I loved music, 










\ -i 


dancing and playing at cards, and too much delighted therein 

What I did in those sports and games I always took 
care to do out of the sight ... of my parents; for I was 
afraid of their reproofs ... I remember that, unkno\\Ti to 
my parents, I had bought a pack of cards, with intent to make 
use of them when I went to see my relations in the country . . . 
I went to see them, and . . . on my way went to a meeting 

at which ... a minister . . . declared 
against the evil of gaming, and particularly of cards . 
From this meeting at Wanstead I went to house of my relations 

The time drawing near that we were to go to our 
games, my uncle called ... to me ... to come and 
take a game at cards ; at which motion I had a strong conviction 
upon me not to do it, as being evil; . . . lifting up my eyes 
I saw a Bible lie in the window, at the sight of which I was 
glad ... I took it, and sat down, and read to myself, 
greatly rejoicing that I was preserved out of the snare 
So their sport for that time was spoiled ... as soon as I 
came home [I] offered my new and untouched pack of cards to 
the fire. I am certain the use of them is of evil consequence 

for which reason all Christians ought to shun them as 
engines of Satan ; and music and dancing having generally the 
same tendency ought therefore to be refrained from. 

Poor, priggish, tormented little Thomas Chalkley 
survived this unnatural childhood and despite his joyless, 
leaden-grey youth became a real human being. In 1701 
he settled in Philadelphia and pursued his mercantile call- 
ing. His strong religious bias, evinced in the distorted 
vagaries of his early years, disposed him to activity in 
the affairs of Friends. In 1723 he removed from the city 
to his Frankford plantation " in order to be more retired 
and for health's sake." 



Along with his business enterprises, which seem to 
have been extensive, he found time to make frequent re- 
ligious visits even to distant places. It was on one of 
these visits that he died in the Island of Tortola in 1741. 
Often he combined his missionary work with his mercan- 
tile farings and his diary presents a remarkable record. 
One cannot suppress a smile at reading how he devoutly 
thanks Providence that he has a wife and cliildren and 
an estate, and yet, the very next thing, off he goes preach- 
ing for two or three months. He truly was an " uneasy " 
person and could not sit long at home. Time and time 
again did he extend to the Indians the hospitality of 
Chalkley Hall, being in this respect much like James 
Logan of Stenton. At the time of his death he was uni- 
versally esteemed and respected and, among Friends^ 
affectionately regarded. 

Thomas Chalkley's only surviving child, Rebecca, 
was married to Abel James, merchant, in 1747, and from 
this union are descended the Jameses and many of the 
Morrises, Lewises, and Thompsons, Abel James, senior 
member of the firm of James & Drinker, was one of the 
consignees of the cargo of the tea ship Polly, and in this 
connexion the fact deserves emphasis that the opposi- 
tion to the Tea Act began in Philadelphia and not in 
Boston as is popularly supposed. The violent measures 
resorted to in Boston have caused the beginnings here to 
be overlooked. 

When the tax on tea was reduced to three pence per 
pound there seemed to be a general disposition to pay it. 
At this juncture, when the arrival of a fresh consign- 
ment from the East India Company was expected, 
William Bradford gathered at the Coffee House several 



citizens, whom he knew to be heartily opposed to the 
measures of the British Government, and together they 
drew up a set of spirited resohitions anent the tea ques- 
tion. On the following Saturday, October 16, 1773, a 
" large and respectable town-meeting," presided over by 
Doctor Thomas Cadwalader, was held at the State House 
and the resolutions were adopted enthusiastically. The 
same resolutions were immediately afterwards adopted, 
nearly word for word, by a town-meeting in Boston 
(November 5, 1773), where a disposition to receive the 
tea had become general, from an idea that an opposition 
to it would not be seconded or supported by any of the 
other Colonies. 

At the meeting of October 16, a committee was ap- 
pointed to wait upon the consignees of the tea and pro- 
cure their resignation. The firm that hesitated to com- 
ply with the popular demand was that of James & 
Drinker. Thereupon they were sent the following 
communication : 


THE PUBLIC present their Compliments to Messieurs 
JAMES and DRINKER. We are infomied that you have this 
day received 3'our commission to enslave your native Country ; 
and as your frivolous Plea of having received no Advice, relative 
to the scandalous Part you were to act, in the TEA-SCHEME, 
can no longer serve your purpose, nor divert our Attention, We 
expect and desire You will immediately inform the Public, by a 
Line or two to be left at the COFFEE-HOUSE, Whether you 
will, or will not, renounce all Pretensions to execute that Com- 

Philadelphia, December 2, 1773. 



A crowd of citizens visited xVbel James at his ware- 
liouse and demanded his resignation. He then and there 
guaranteed word and property that the tea should not 
be huided and j^ledged his little daughter Rebecca, who 
was perched nearby on top of her father's hogsheads, as 
a surety for the performance of his promise. 

JNIeanwhile other meetings had been held and on No- 
vember 27 a notice in the form of a handbill was served 
on the Delaware River pilots bidding them look out for 
the Folly, then hourly expected, and warning them not 
to fetch her into port. On the same handbill w^as a note 
to Captain Ayres of the Polly advising him of the dire 
consequences that would attend any attempt to land the 
tea and asking him: 

Wluit think you, Captain, of a Halter around your Neck — ten 
Gallons of liquid Tar decanted on your Pate — with the Feathers 
of a dozen wild Geese laid over that to enliven your appearance? 

On December 7 this lurid admonition was reiterated 
on another handbill and signed by the " Committee for 
Tarring and Feathering." Encouraged, doubtless, by 
these earlier inflammatory and stubborn measiu'es of re- 
sistance in Philadelphia, the people of Boston held their 
dramatic and somewhat noisy tea-party of December 16. 

When at last tidings came, on December 25, that the 
long-expected Polly was indeed come into the river and 
had reached Chester, a deputation of gentlemen went 
down and intercepted her at Gloucester Point. This was 
as far as she ever got. On Monday morning, December 
27, on an hour's notice, a town meeting was called at the 
State House — it was so crowded that the people 



had to adjourn to the adjacent square— and it was 
forthwith resolved, among other things, that " Cap- 
tain Ayres shall neither enter nor report his vessel at the 
Custom House," and " shall carry back the Tea imme- 
diately." He was allowed to stay in the city till the 
following day to secure the necessary supplies and was 
then packed speedily off. Thus ended Philadelphia's 
tea episode without any noisy outburst or tumult. 

It was Abel James who built the main portion of 
Chalkley Hall. " When thrown out of business by the 
. . . War he kept up his spirits as long as he could 
find employment for half the neighbouring village of 
Frankford, in rebuilding " the seat his wife had inherited 
from her father. It is not known who the architect was, 
but he was probably English, as the firm was English in 
its connexion and Loyalist in all its later tendencies. 
Furthermore, the house has not the usual lines of a 
Colonial country house; it is of quite different type and 
has rather the princely breadth we find in English 
Georgian seats. 

In Revolutionary times many interesting things hap- 
pened in the vicinity and, as Chalkley Hall was on debat- 
able ground while the British held Philadelphia, its occu- 
pants had some thrilling experiences. Once ]Mrs. James 
had provided an ample dinner for some half-starved 
American soldiers who had presented themselves at the 
Hall. While thev were in the midst of their meal, the 
alarm of "Red Coats!" was given. The Continental 
soldiers hastily fled by one door while the British entered 
by another, and instead of pursuing their predecessors sat 
down and finished the viands prepared for their American 



cousins. Stories are told, too, of how jNIrs. James would 
drive tlirough the British lines into the city and carry a 
young pig hidden under the seat of her chaise to some 
of her impoverished friends and kinsfolk whose food sup- 
plies on their own plantations had long since been dimin- 
ished by unchecked British depredation. 

After the death of Abel James, Chalkley Hall passed 
into the possession of the Yorke family and was the scene 
of much social gaiety, especially during the period when 
Philadelphia was the seat of national government. In 
the matter of luxury and sumptuous entertaining Gen- 
eral Greene declared the luxury of Boston " an infant 
babe compared to that of the Quaker City." Like most 
old houses Chalkley Hall has its ghost, and the Little 
Grey Lady appears now and again to warn of deaths and 
other momentous occurrences. 

In 1817 the Wetherills became the owners of tliis old 
Frankford plantation, and right worthily sustained its 
rejjutation for the generous hospitality that had been a 
tradition of the house since its earliest days. Rumours 
have come down to us of a great feast on one occasion 
when covers were laid for eighty guests and each guest 
ate from a silver porringer. Be that as it may, a cordial 
and heart whole welcome for visitors has ever been the 
invariable practice at Chalkley Hall with one exception. 

That one exception was the poet Whittier, and he 
himself opposed the obstacle. He made his visit in 1&38. 
One day a strange man was seen leaning on the gate 
looking steadfastly at the house. Mr. Wetherill went 
down the drive and invited him to enter. When he 
learned who the stranger was he pressed him to come in, 



but to no purpose. The poet was seized with an unaccount- 
able fit of shyness, and after gazing a few moments walked 
away. His poem on Chalkley Hall appeared not long 
after, alluding to the missionary labours and good deeds 
of its first builder and breathing his spirit of inward peace, 
especially in the lines : 

Beneath the arms 
Of this embracing wood, a good man made 
His home, Hke Abraham resting in the shade 

Of Mamre's lonely plains. 

Here, from liis voyages on the stormy seas, 

Weary and worn, 
He came to meet his children and to bless 
The Giver of all good in thankfulness 

And praise for his return. 

And hence this scene, in sunset glory warm. 

Its woods around. 
Its still stream winding on in light and shade. 
Its soft, green meadows and its upland glade, 

To me is holy ground. 

Chalkley, though still owned by the Wetherill family, 
is no longer used by them as a place of residence because 
of the railroad encroachments. For some years it was 
turned over to the Country Week Association. 





X the brighter days of Frankford, be- 

^^js^^l vfo '^jp4^] fore the advent of a wave of indus- 

?^^i*^B'i'S^ trialism cast its barren blight of ugli- 

^^^^ ness over all the country roundabout, 

jv^ %/ AValn Grove was one of the most 

^^^^t ^^^''i^'tif'^il seats of that district much 
*^ ^ favoured of old Philadelphians. Now 

the passenger in the trains for New York, as he speeds 
bv Frankford station, can see the house to the east of the 
tracks, standing gaunt and dilapidated amid the stumps 
of mighty trees that once formed the grove from which the 
estate took its name. 

Set on a rise in the midst of the surrounding green, 
the east windows of AValn Grove looked over a gentlv 
sloping level stretch of farming country to the Delaware, 
in the distance. The house itself consists of a square 
central part of three storeys with a hip roof and lower 
wings with octagon ends to the north and south. The 
west door, adorned with pilasters and pediment, opens 
into a great square hall that occupies the whole front of 
the house and is in realitj'^ an enormous living-room. A 
door in the back part communicates with what was the 
})reakfast-room, and at one side of that, in no way con- 
nected with the entrance, is a little square hallway con- 
taining the staircase. 

It is worth noting that in many of the old houses 
in the rhila(lel])hia neighbourhood no stairway is visible 
from the principal entrance and frequently it is put in an 


insignificant position shut off by doors from connexion 
with other parts of the first floor. It is possible that this 
arrangement may have been adopted to prevent all the 
heat in winter from going up the stair-well. 

To one side of the great hall is the library occupying 
the entire lower part of the south wing — a most spacious 
apartment whose amply furnished shelves contained an 
unusually well-selected stock of lx)oks. At the north 
end there is a mantel of intricately carved white marble. 
In the corresponding wing on the north is the dining- 
room of the same size as the library. All along the east 
front runs a porch with a balcony on top, much in the 
fashion of some of the old southern houses. The square 
part of the house was built about 1772 and, like Cedar 
Grove, was used only as a shelter during the day when it 
suited the owner and his family to visit the plantation. As 
a matter of fact, that was almost daily during a part of 
the year. Later, when the curious prejudice that many 
city people entertained against sleeping in the country 
had ceased, the wings were built, and the family spent 
their entire time there during the summer months. 

Here lived Robert Wain, a cousin of the vohitile 
Nicholas, not gifted with the same sparkling sense of 
humour that always made that worthy a marked person, 
but possessed of sterling qualities of cliaracter buttressed 
by eminent abilit}^ so tliat he wielded a wide influence 
in the community. In partnership witli his cousin, Jesse 
Wain, he carried on an extensive business as merchant 
and importer, and in later life he also entered the manu- 
facturing field, becoming deeply interested in cotton mills 
in Trenton and iron foundries at Phoenixville. His 



slii])ping' enterprises and his mills brought him a hand- 
some income in addition to the substantial estate he had 
inherited from his father. 

The mode of life and the extent of hospitality at Wain 
Grove were in keeping with the affluence of the family, 
and the estate invariably maintained contributed appre- 
ciably to the general social atmosphere of the city. It 
was truly an impressive sight to see the great family 
coach lumbering along the Frankford Road on its way to 
town. A coachman in purple livery in front of the long 
body, swinging on its leather straps, and two purple foot- 
men standing on the post-board at the back presented a 
striking appearance indeed. Long after Robert AValn's 
death the wonted state and ceremony were maintained 

There are not a few people still living who well re- 
member an old-fashioned bit of hospitality that was al- 
ways practised at Wain Grove, but is nowadays, unfor- 
tunately, too rarely observed. When any one came to 
call, the butler was sure to appear in due season, resplen- 
dent in piu'ple velvet livery, bearing a silver tray in sol- 
emn pomp on which were glasses of JNIadeira and a 
platter of cakes. The rite of wine and cakes has been 
largely supplanted by tea, which is all very delightful, 
but still one must admit that there are plenty of occa- 
sions when the ancient custom could be suitably followed. 

But passing on from the courtly memories of resplen- 
dent })utlers with trays of Madeira and cakes to refresh 
the afternoon caller, let us glance, for a moment, at the 
Sunday afternoon gatherings in summer when a large 
family connexion and a larger circle of friends made it 



a frequent practice to visit Wain Grove, and their car- 
riages and saddle horses might be seen tied to the trees 
at a distance from the house. This Sunday gathering 
was customary not only during Robert Wain's lifetime 
but as long as his descendants lived in the house. 
Nicholas, we may be sure, was often among the number, 
for in summer he had a little place not far away from 
his cousin's. 

Whether it was on the occasion of some social affair 
at Wain Grove or elsewhere, it is impossible to say, but 
at all events Nicholas once met his match for repartee. 
A woman of fashion, whom he knew very well, was pres- 
ent — she was not a member of the Society of Friends — 
gorgeously arrayed in a new satin gown. Looking se- 
verely at her apparel, he remarked, " Humph! Satan 
within and satin without!" The lady addressed as 
promptly retorted, " And how can you help it, when old 
Nick's about?" to the great amusement of her auditors. 

Robert Wain was, for several years, a member of the 
General Assembly of Pennsylvania, and it has been said 
of him that " no man was more active in his day in all 
that related to civic or national progress." During the 
stirring period between 1790 and 1820, embracing the 
first years under the Federal Constitution and the War 
of 1812, he was frequently called upon to be present at 
various conferences in the State House, the old London 
Coffee House, and elsewhere, held to advance the inter- 
ests of Philadelphia and the nation at large. 

Aproj)os of the allusion to the Coffee House, a word 
should be said in regard to that picturesque institution 
of life in Colonial Philadelphia. What did not centre 

22 337 


about the Court House at Second and High Streets 
centred around the Coffee House one square below, at 
the southwest corner of Front and High Streets. It 
was the acknowledged medium of daily intercourse be- 
tween representative citizens for the exchange of news 
and the discussion of all matters of public interest, mer- 
cantile or political. Thither resorted all classes — mer- 
chants, ship captains, Provincial officials, officers of the 
army or navy who chanced to be here — everybody, in 
fact, of any consequence was sure to drop in. It was, in 
short, club, maritime exchange, board of trade, and gos- 
sip shop all combined. Of all the keepers of the London 
Coit'ee House, William Bradford was deservedly the 
most prominent, and it was here that his draft of the tea 
resolutions, referred to in the chapter on Chalkley Hall, 
was promulgated. Auctions and sheriff's sales were held 
before the Coffee House door and slaves were commonly 
there exposed for the inspection of prospective pur- 
chasers. On occasions of any public excitement, whether 
of indignation or rejoicing, if there was a bonfire to be 
kindled, it was kindled in front of the Coffee House, and 
if any object of popular detestation were to be burned 
in effigy, there also did the auto da fe take place. 

After Robert Wain's death the family continued to 
live at Wain Grove until the location became undesirable 
as a place of residence. It was then sold and abandoned 
to the fate that sooner or later seems to overtake all old 
houses if they happen to be in the path of industrial 

Built by Edward Slile^, c. 170^ 

WAl-.N CiH<)\K, UtANKKiUlJ 
Fr»iri a painting made before the property pu.s-sed out of tlie family and tlie trees were eiil dii« ii 



OT far from Wain Grove, on the 
south side of Tacony Street between 
Church and Duncan, stands a grey 
old mansion known to this day among 
the mill people and labourers as Port 
Royal House, though whence its 
name or what its story they cannot 
tell. Dingy and dilapidated, it still retains sufficient traces 
of its former high estate to show what a lordly building it 
was in the period of its prosperity. It is thoroughly repre- 
sentative of the type of Georgian country house so many 
of which arose near Philadelphia about 1760 and in the 
decade following. A broad hallway runs through the 
middle of the house and on either side of it are lofty 
rooms embellished wuth panelled overmantels and finely 
wTOught woodwork. From the doorway, as in numbers 
of houses of this period, no stair is visible and the hall 
is simply a great room into which all the others open. 
The stairway is reached by entering a smaller hall that 
opens by a door into the central hall. However similar 
in general plan and execution some of these old houses 
may be, they are all so full of a courtly beauty entirely 
their own and are all so expressive of the generous mode 
of life their occupants lived, that the present generation 
can readily overlook any repetition of design. 

Port Royal House remains to-day a visible link in 
the history of the connexion between Philadelphia and 
the Island of Bermuda, a connexion in the Colonial 



period of no mean importance to both places, as we shall 
presently see. Some time near the middle of the eigh- 
teenth century, Edward Stiles, the first master of Port 
Koyal House, came to Philadelphia and engaged in mer- 
cantile shipping. He was the great-grandson of John 
Stiles, one of the earliest settlers in Bermuda in 1635. 
His father was Daniel Stiles, of Port Royal Parish, a 
member of the Assembly of Bermuda in 1723, and a 
vestryman and warden of Port Royal Church, and it 
was near Port Royal that Edward Stiles was born, prob- 
ably between 1715 and 1720. As a young man he set- 
tled in the Island of New Providence of the Bahama 
group, but subsequently came to Philadelphia, attracted 
hither by shipping interests and the opportunity of be- 
coming a mercantile factor, for Philadelphia at that time 
was the foremost port of the Colonies and her commerce 
with the island settlements was extensive. Stiles's mi- 
gration was only one instance out of hundreds where the 
islands have contributed to Philadelphia's population. 
The progenitors of not a few prominent families migrated 
first to Barbadoes only to find their way here a few years 

In embracing the pursuit of maritime commerce. 
Stiles was taking the surest road to wealth and civic in- 
fluence. His store was in Front Street between Market 
and Arch, which was one of the busiest shipping districts 
in the city. His town house was in Walnut Street between 
Third and Fourth and covered the space now occupied 
by numbers 308 and 310. His business prospered ex- 
ceedingly and, as it was the fashion for men of means to 
have a countrvseat as well as a residence in the citv, he 



bought a plantation near Frankford, in Oxford Town- 
ship, from members of the Wain family, who had ex- 
tensive holdings in that neighbourhood, and this estate 
he called Port Royal after the name of his birthplace in 
Bermuda. Here he lived in summer, surrounded by his 
slaves, assuming the state becoming a great shipping 
merchant, one of the " nobles of Pennsylvania " as John 
Adams called the prosperous, luxury-loving citizens of 
Philadelphia whose style of life and elegant establish- 
ments completely amazed him when he first came here 
with his strong New England notions of frugality. 

In 1775 the inhabitants of Bermuda, owing to the 
distress occasioned by the Non-Importation Agreement 
among the American Colonies, petitioned the Continental 
Congress for relief from the straits into which they were 
thrown for lack of supplies that had hitherto been sent 
from American sources. Congress thereupon granted 
permission, in November, 1775, to Edward Stiles, to send 
the Sea Nymph, Samuel Stobel master, laden with cer- 
tain provisions such as Indian corn, flour, bread, pork, 
beef, soap, and apples, to Bermuda for the immediate 
supply of the inhabitants. The cargo was to be consid- 
ered a part of the annual allowance for the Colony of 
Pennsylvania for the ensuing year. The exportation, 
however, was to be under the superintendence of the 
Committee of Safety, and the people of Bermuda were 
to pay for the provisions in salt or else they could turn 
over in exchange arms, ammunition, saltpetre, sulphur, 
and field pieces. As a Bermudian, it was natural that 
Edward Stiles should be deeply interested in the condi- 
tion of affairs in his old home, especially when that try- 



ing condition was precipitated by the action of the Colony 
of his adoption. 

During the occupation of Philadelphia by the British 
in the fall and winter of 1777 and 1778, Frankford and 
the vicinity fared badly under the depredations of the 
contending armies. Being in the middle ground it was 
at the mercy of both. This was particularly true of the 
Port Royal plantation. As an instance of the pillage to 
which people were subjected, we may cite the case of 
]Mrs. Stiles, who, on December 6, 1777, drove out from 
the city with a boy servant, having borrowed Henry 
Drinker's horse for the occasion. Just as she was about 
to get into her chaise to drive back to town, a troop of 
British Light Horse came along and took both horse 
and chaise from her and she was obliged to walk back 
to the city. Before this the place had been robbed of all 
the valuable furniture, provisions, coach horses, and eight 
or ten negro slaves. 

By his will Edward Stiles provided that his slaves 
should be freed and educated at the expense of his es- 
tate. It is said, although the story cannot be vouched 
for, that Stephen Girard, as a young man, was in the 
employ of Stiles. 

In 1853 the Lukens family bought Port Royal House 
and its plantation from the Stiles family and for some 
years the Reverend Mr. Lukens conducted a boarding 
school there. When Frankford became a busy manu- 
facturing centre the desirabihty of Port Royal House as a 
place of residence ceased, and its owners moved away, 
leaving it to whatever tenancy chance might bring. 

> ■> J 1 

. .€ • .€ . . 



*OING up the Delaware River by 
boat, not long after passing Torres- 
dale Landing and about sixteen 
miles from the city, there suddenly 
breaks on the view what appears to 
be the gable end of a gleaming w^hite 
Greek temple showing out from the 
thick surrounding foliage. This is the library wing of 
Andalusia, for more than a century past the home of a 
branch of the Biddle family. 

In 1794, John Craig, a merchant of Philadelphia, 
bought this tract of land on the river bank. When he 
acquired the place it was merely a farm. His wife, an 
Irish lady of great good taste, herself planned the 
spacious mansion with octagonal ends w^hich ]Mr. Craig 
built here. 

Nicholas Biddle married the only daughter of John 
Craig, and Andalusia became his residence about 1810. 
Born in 1786, Nicholas Biddle attended the University of 
Pennsylvania and Princeton, graduating in his fifteenth 
year. His history as a lawj^er and financier is too w^ell 
known to need reiteration. Suffice it to say that he was 
a man of most cultivated tastes and considerable architec- 
tural knowdedge and ability. To his Grecian taste the 
city owes the Custom House, formerly the United States 
Bank, of which he was president, and also Girard College. 
In 1832 Mr. Biddle enlarged Andalusia and added the 
eastern or Grecian wing which makes such a striking ap- 



pearance from the river. Six beautifully proportioned 
fluted Doric pillars support the pediment, the whole 
building being framed in a setting of mighty sycamores 
and evergreens of more than a century's growth. From 
the steps descending from the portico, a broad expanse 
of lawn sweeps down toward the river. Of all the many 
noble and beautiful seats lining both shores of the upper 
Delaware, none is finer than Andalusia. It is pleasant 
to be able to say that it is maintained in the best possible 

« • « • * • 

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• • • • 

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EXT above Andalusia on the river 
bank, and separated only by a lane, 
is Pen Rhyn, the seat of the Bickley 
family. In 174)4 Abraham Bickley, 
of the County of Sussex, in Eng- 
land, bought this land along the 
Delaware and built thereon a house 
which is incorporated in the present structure. Although 
a resident of England, Mr. Bickley was of Welsh descent 
and hence the Gaelic name of the estate. Pen Rhyn. He 
married a Miss Shewell or Sewell, of Philadelphia, by 
whom he had six children, all of whom died without issue. 
In 1793 he remodelled the house by adding the front 
portion and later the back buildings. In general plan it 
is similar to the majority of country houses of the loca- 
tion and period, and was marked by its solidity, spacious- 
ness, and quiet dignity. In recent times it was much al- 
tered and added to and its Colonial character completely 

The surrounding park, however, is much as it was, 
and would make a worthy setting for any house. A Avide 
vista cut through the trees affords a charming view from 
the house to the river and through this opening runs a 
levelled, grass-paved causeway. Immediately around the 
buildings the grounds are quite free of trees. 

In the stable is still preserved the old coach imported 
from England by Abraham Bickley soon after his mar- 
riage. It is a most ponderous and magnifical affair hung 



on C Siblings, painted a dark olive-green and on the doors 
are blazoned the family arms. The body is so high above 
the ground that flights of folding steps, that let down. 
when the doors are opened, are necessary to get in and 
out. It must have presented a striking appearance when 
all its upholstery of dark green hammercloth was new, 
as it went lumbering along at the rate of four miles an 
hour, drawn by four sturdy, plodding bays, a coachman 
and groom on the box, and two footmen standing on the 
post-board behind. In those days the sixteen-mile drive 
to the city was not without its perils of highwaymen after 

Mrs. Bickley's sister married Sir Benjamin West, 
after being assisted to escape from the second-storey 
window of her father's house in a most dramatic manner. 
It is said that young Mr. White, afterward the bishop, 
and one or two other men of prominence had a hand in 
this escapade. 

After Abraham Bickley's death the estate passed by 
bequest to Lloyd Wharton-Bickley, his nearest of kin, 
and from him to his son, Robert Wharton-Bickley, from 
whom it went to his cousin, Mrs. Drexel, and has now de- 
scended to her daughter, Mrs. Emmet. 



OLTON FARM is on the Fallsing- 
ton Road in Bucks County, about one 
mile and a half from Tullytown sta- 
tion of the New York Division of the 
Pennsylvania Railroad. It is the 
original home of the Pemberton 
family in this country. 

Ralph Pemberton resided until 1676 at Aspul in Lan- 
cashire, England, but removed at that time, with his fam- 
ily, to RadclifFe, in the parish of the same name. His 
son, Phineas Pemberton, married Phoebe, daughter of 
James and Anna Harrison. All of these became con- 
vinced of Friends' principles and were much persecuted 
during that early stage of the Society's history. At the 
solicitation of William Penn, they sailed for America July 
5, 1682, in the ship Submission, from Liverpool, James 
Settle, master. Included in their party, besides those 
mentioned, were Agnes Harrison, mother of James, Jos- 
eph and Abigail Pemberton, children of Phineas, Robert 
Bond and Joseph Mather, young men from RadclifFe 
seeking their fortunes in the new country, the latter being 
the progenitor of the Mather family here. 

The log of the ship shows a rough voyage of two 
months till their landing at Choptank, Maryland, 
whither they were driven by a storm. As their destina- 
tion was Bucks County they were compelled to proceed 
on horseback. Philadelphia was a wilderness when they 
entered it in November, 1682. They could not find shel- 
ter for their horses and " spancelled " tliem in the woods. 



Next morning they were gone and the party had to pro- 
ceed by boat to the Falls of the Delaware. One of their 
horses was not found until the succeeding January. 

On November 17, 1683, Phineas Pemberton pur- 
chased five hundred acres on the Delaware River oppo- 
site Byles's Island and built a house there which he called 
Grove Place. Being desirous of a more comfortable 
home for his family he finished one in 1687 some five 
miles distant and more in the interior, which he called 
Bolton Farm. 

He was the most efficient and prominent man in the 
County and left a mass of records in his own handwriting, 
the records of the County up to his last illness being 
models in this respect. He was Clerk of the County 
Court, Deputy Master of Rolls, Deputy Register Gen- 
eral, Receiver of Proprietary Quit Rents for Bucks 
County, member of the Provincial Council, 1685-87-95- 
97-99, and member of the Assembly 1689-94-98, being its 
speaker in 1698, 1700, and 1701. 

William Penn writes to James Logan, September 4, 

Poor Phineas is a dying man and was not at the election, 
though he crept (as I may say) to Meeting yesterday. I am grieved 
at it; for he has not his fellow, and without him this is a poor 
country indeed. 

Again in a letter from London to Logan he writes: 

I mourn for poor Phineas Pemberton, the ablest as well as 
one of the best men in the Pro\nnce. My dear love to his widow 
and sons and daughters. 

James Logan wrote to Penn, March 7, 1702: 

That pillar of Bucks County, Phineas Pemberton, worn 
away with his long afflicting distemper, was removed about the 



5th. of 1st. mo. last. Hearing he was past hopes, I went to 
visit him the day before he departed. He was sensible and com- 
fortable to the last, and inquiring solicitously about thy affairs 
and the parliament; gave his last offering, his dear love, to thee 
and thine, and particularly recommended the care of his estate 
to me in thy behalf, desiring that his services in collecting the 
rents with Samuel Jennings might be considered in his own, 
otherwise he should be wronged; and that his attendance at New- 
castle Assembly, when his plantation and business so much suf- 
fered by it, might according to thy promise, be paid, with his 
overplus in Warminster, which he said was but little, and not 
valuable. I was with him when he departed and coming to Phila- 
delphia that day, returned to his burial. He lies interred in 
his plantation on the river, with the rest of his relations. 

This graveyard was at Grove Place where their fam- 
ily still maintain it as a place of burial. 

The only surviving son of Phineas Pemberton was 
named Israel and was born at Grove Place in 1684. He 
was educated by his parents and by Francis Daniell Pas- 
torius in Philadelphia. When a young man he entered 
the counting-house of Samuel Carpenter, in the city, and 
became one of the wealthiest and best known merchants. 
He visited the Barbadoes and the West Indies for the 
purpose of trade in 1708. 

He was elected a common councilman in 1718, alder- 
man, 1720, for a life tenure, and was one of the city's 
two members of the Provincial Council for twenty years 
beginning 1718. Israel Pemberton was one of the most 
active of Friends and was diligent in caring for the So- 
ciety's property, schools, and in settling differences be- 
tween members, the Society having a testimony against 
going to law. He occupied the position of clerk in sev- 


eral ^Meetings for Discipline, was an overseer and finally 
an elder of the Society. He had a city residence at the 
southwest corner of Front and JNIarket Streets from 1718 
to 1745, when he removed to the southwest corner of 
Third and Chestnut Streets. This was called Clarke 
Hall, and was the general resort of Friends from Europe 
and many strangers of note. The terraces and gardens 
were famous for their beauty and the prospect of the 
liver which they commanded. He also owned a place 
called Evergreens, in 1738, at Twenty- third and South 
and Gray's Ferry Road. 

He married Rachel, daughter of Charles Read and 
sister-in-law of James Logan, in 1710. 

Upon the death of Israel Pemberton, Bolton Farm 
was bequeathed to his son James, born 1723. James 
Pemberton was a widely travelled man, both in America 
and Europe. He was successful in mercantile pursuits 
as his father had been, and was interested in the Indians 
and negroes. He was a founder of the Pennsylvania 
Abolition Society, the first in the world, and at the death 
of Benjamin Franklin, became its president; a founder 
and manager of the Pennsylvania Hospital, and a mem- 
ber of the Assembly in 1756, he resigned his seat when 
Governour Morris proclaimed war against the Delaware 
Indians, June 10, 1756, because of his conscientious 
scruples against war. He also opposed armed opposi- 
tion to the British Government and was exiled to Vir- 
ginia in 1777, during which time his wife Phoebe man- 
aged his aifairs. His town house was on Second Street 
adjoining the corner at Lodge Alley, now Gothic Street. 
Besides this he owned The Plantation, now the site of 



the United States Naval Asylum on the east bank of the 
Schuylkill River and on the opposite side of Gray's Ferry 
Road from Evergreens, which he inherited from his 
father. Watson says of him: 

He was almost the last of the race of cocked hats, and certainly 
one of the very best illustrations of bygone times and primitive 

James Pemberton married Hannah Lloyd, Sarah 
Smith, and Phoebe Lewis Morton. A daughter of the 
second marriage was Mary Pemberton, who became the 
wife of Anthony Morris in 1790. He was the son of 
Captain Samuel Morris and Rebecca Wistar Morris, was 
a merchant of Philadelphia and a member of the bar. 
Bolton Farm was inherited by Mary Pemberton and was 
lived in by Anthony Morris and his family. He gave 
much of his time to the public service, was a State Senator, 
and in 1793 Speaker of the House. In 1813 he was ap- 
pointed minister to Spain. Much of his long life of 
ninety-five years was passed at Bolton Farm, and he is 
buried there with his wife. 

Their son, James Pemberton Morris, married Rosa 
Gardiner, daughter of the Reverend William Gardiner, 
LL.D., of Edinburgh, Scotland, and resided at Bolton 
Farm, where they are both buried. After their death the 
property passed to their children, and one of them, 
Phineas Pemberton Morris, resided there during the sum- 
mers until his death in 1888. All of the children of James 
Pemberton Morris died without issue and the estate was 
devised by their wills to Effingham B. Morris, their 
cousin and the present o^\Tier, who lives at Bolton Farm 
at intervals during the year. 



Besides the many Eighteenth Century houses still standing 
in the older parts of Philadelphia, the following, either within 
the present City limits or in the neighbourhood, are of 
interest for architectural or other reasons: 

Engle House, Main and Lafayette Sts. 
Neglee House, 4418 Main St. 
Henet House, 4908 Main St. 
Gilbert Stuart House, 5140 Main St. 
AsHMEAD House, 5430 Main St. 
MoRRis-LiTTELL HousE, High and Main 

DiRCK Keyser House, 6205 Main St. 
Rodney House, Main and Duval Sts. 
BiLLMEYER HousE, Main and Upsal Sts. 
Spencer House, Mill St. 
Price House, Germantown Cricket Club. 
David Rittenhouse Cottage, Lincoln 

The Monastery (Gorgas House) ,Wissa- 

hickon Creek. 
Wakefield, Logan Station. 
Little Wakefield, Fishers Lane. 
Gowen House, Mt. Airy. 
Butler Place, Branchtown. 
Toby Leech House, Ogontz. 
Grange Farm, near Tabor Station. 
Spring Head, l , , . 
Vernon. [Jenkmtown. 

Fairfield, York Road above Fishers 

Annsbury Farm, Second St. Pike and 

York Road. 
Forrest Hill, Rising Sun Lane. 
Digby Place, Fox Chase. 
WisTAR House, Frankford. 
Barton House, Frankford. 
Huckel House, Frankford. 
Summer Hill, Frankford. 

Sunbury House, Croydon, Bucks. 

China Hall, near Eddington, Bucks. 

Bel Espoir, Cornwells, Bucks. 

Growden House, Trevose, Bucks. 

Clock House, near Cornwells, Bucks. 

Bake House, near Torresdale. 

Bycot House, New Hope. 

Somerset, Lardner's Point. 

Lynfield, Holmesburg. 

Hillside Farm, Newtown. 

Twaddell House, 45th St. and Balti- 
more Avenue. 

Sellers Hall, Millbourne. 

Liddenfield, Upper Darby. 

Benjamin West House, Swarthmore. 

Price House, Merion Meeting. 

Owen House, Wynnewood. 

Elm Hall, Montgomery and Bowman 

Brookmead, Devon. 

Foulke House, Penllyn. 

Glendower, Gwynedd. 

Joseph Evans House, Gwynedd. 

Riddle House, Glen Riddle. 

Leiper House, near Swarthmore. 

Paschall House, Kingsessing. 

Headquarters, Valley Forge. 

Mount Joy, Spring Mill. 

The Rabbit, near Bala. 

Fisher House, Fairmount Park. 

Strawberry Mansion, Fairmount Park. 

Ridgeland, Fairmount Park. 

The Lilacs, Fairmount Park. 

This list might be greatly extended, but the names given 
serve to show the wealth of old places in the Philadelj)liia 



In the preparation of this volume many private papers and 
documents have been consulted, as well as deeds, briefs of title 
and inventories. Besides these manuscript sources, sundry old 
and rare volumes have contributed fragments of information 
here and there. Some of the material has been supplied by 
the verbal communications of aged people — facts and tradi- 
tions that have never been committed to writing. From the 
nature of the case it would be impossible and perhaps not 
wholly desirable to give an exhaustive bibliography. Of the 
printed sources, however, among the books that have been of 
the chief est use are the following: 

Germantown Guide Book, C. F. Jenkins. 

Watson's Annals of Philadelphia. 

Germantown Road and Its Associations, Townsend Ward. 

The Battle of Germantown, Dr. A. C. Lambdin. 

Sally Wister's Journal. 

Elizabeth Drinker's Diary. 

W^illiam Black's Diary. 

Jacob Hiltzheimer's Diary. 

Ann Warder's Diary. 

History of Germantown, Dr. Keyser and others. 

Hotchkin's Germantown. 

Scharf and Westcott's Germantown. 

Pennsylvania in American History, S. W. Pennypacker. 

The True William Penn, Sydney George Fisher. 

Deborah Logan's Courtship, A. C. Myers. 

Travels in the Confederation, Dr. Schoepf. 

Travels in America, One Hundred Years Ago, Twining. 1783. 

Hamilton's Itinerarium, 1744. 

Peter Kalm, Swedish Traveler, 1748. 

The Quakers in the American Colonies, Joncs-Sharpless. 



Tlirough Colonial Doorways, Anne Hollingswortli Wharton. 

The Wharton Family, Pennsylvania Magazine. 

Anthony Wayne, Spears. 

Colonial Families of Philadelphia, Jordan. 

Penn-Logan Correspondence. 

Historic Mansions of Philadelphia, T. Westcott. 

Lives of Eminent Philadelphians, Simpson. 

Pennsj'lvania Gazette. 

History of Philadelphia, Westcott. 

Fairmount Park, C. S. Keyser. 

Colonial Mansions, Thomas Allen Glenn. 

Life of General Anthony W^ayne, C. J. Stille. 

Old York Road, Mrs. Mears. 

Rebecca Franks, Max J. Kohler. 

The Jews of Philadelphia, Morais. 

Colonel Isaac Franks, Jastrow. 

The Fisher Family, Smith. 

Memoirs of Dr. George Logan, Deborah Norris Logan. 

The Life of Major Andre, Winthrop Sargent. 

Pennsylvania Magazine. 

Merion in the Welsh Tract, Glenn. 

The Wynnes, Deem. 

Wynne Family' Genealogy, Cook. 

Memorials of Friends, Collections of 1787, 1869 and 1879. 


Abington, 218 

Meeting, 309 

Township, 305 
Academy and College of Philadelpliia, 

of the Fine Arts, 17 
Actors, early, 322 
Adams, John, 55, 116, 168, 244 

Mrs. John, 64 
Allen, Andrew, 74 

M^jor, 274 
Almshouse Lot, 57, 59 
" American Magazine," 81 

Philosophical Society, 54, 66, 67, 
Amusements, 22 
Andalusia, 343 

Andre, Major, 91, 136, 137, 249 
Andrews, Rev. John, D.D., 87 
Architecture in Eighteenth Century, 

14, 85, 98, 99, 100 
Armatt, Miss, 212 

Thomas, 214 

Thomas Wright, 214 
Armitt, Sarah, 208 
Arnold, General Benedict, 117-121, 

124, 135 
Ashhurst, John, 163, 164, 165 
Associators, 102 
Atlee, Mary, 182 

William Richardson, 182 
Audubon, John James La Forest, 194, 

195, 200 
Auchmuty, Dr., 44 

Miss, 137 

Bacon, David, 
Mary, 49 


Bakewell, Lucy, 194, 195, 201 

Mrs., 194 

William, 190, 193-197 
Bala, 150 

Bank Meeting, 155, 306 
Banning, Catharine, 248 
Barbecues, 23 
Barclay, Alexander, 134 

David, 135 

Robert, 135 
Barker, Abraham, 62 
Baring, Ann Bingham, 56 
Barnes, John, 308 
Barton, John, 50 

Rebecca, 50 
Bartram, Ann, 94 

House, 94-97 

John, 94-97 

William, 96, 97 
Baynton, Squire, 219 
Bells of Christ Church, 24 
Bellevue, 62 
Belmont, 110, 141-152 
Benezet, John, 43 
Bensalem Township, 343, 347 
Bensel, George, 219 
Bickley, Abraham, 345 
Biddle, Colonel, 187 

Nicholas, 343 
Bingham, Hannah, 43 

Hon. William, 43, 45, 53, 66, 60 

Mrs. William, 46, 64 
Black, William, 21, 209 
Blackwell, Colonel Jacol), W 

Rev. Robert, D.D., 42-44, 46, 47 
Blackwell's Island, 44 
Blockley Townsliip, 102, 142 
Blue Bell Inn, 106 
Bolton Farm, 283, 347 
Bonaparte, Joseph, 76-79 
Bond Family, 184 
Bonplaiul, 68 
Bordctitown, 76, 77, 79 
Bosler, Charles, 311 

Joseph, 311 
Boudinot, Klias, 3(»3 



Uraiulywine, Battle of, 175, 192, 286, 

Breck, Samuel, 68, 78, 148 
Breintnall, Mary, 143 

Rachel, 59 
Brinton, John H., 163 
Brodwell, 307 
Broglie, Prince de, 65 
Brookland, 27 
Bryn Alawr, 169 
Buchanan, James, 181 
Bucks, 37 

Burgoyne, General, 91, 284, 285, 294 
Bush Hill, 57, 85 
Buttall, Martha, 153 
Byrd, Mrs., 181 

Colonel William, 53 

Cadwalader Family, 184 

General, 295 
John, 31 
Lambert, 156 

Dr. Thomas, 
Camp Hill, 286 
Care, Peter, 263 
Carlisle, Earl of, 54 
Carlton, 257 

Carr, Colonel Robert, 97 
Carroll, Charles, 248 
Carter, Landon, 284, 285 
Cathcart, Lord, 137 
Cedar Grove, 318-324 
Chalkley Hall, 17, 318, 325 

Rebecca, 328 

Thomas, 133, 325, 326 
ChastcUux, Marquis de, 149 
Cheltenham Township, 305, 307 
Chew, Anna Maria, 248 

Ann Sophia Penn, 253 

Benjamin, 243 

Chief Justice, 17, 144 

Elizal)eth, 248 

Harriet, 248 

Chew, Henrietta, 248 

John, 242 

Joseph, 248 

Julian, 248 

Mary, 248 

Peggy Oswald, 248 

Samuel, 242 

Sarah, 248 

Sophia, 248 
Christ Church, 14, 29, 44, 102, 300 
Church of England, 45 
Cider Frolics, 23 
City Troop, 23, 73, 74, 179 
Ciarkson, Matthew, 173 
Clay, Henry, 76 
Clifford, Mrs., 127 
Clifton Hall, 158-160 
Clinton, General Sir Henry, 139 
Cliveden, 242 
Clunie, 113, 115, 116 
Coates, Thomas, 318 
Cobb's Creek, 98, 106, 158 
Coffee House, 70, 337, 338 
Coleman, William, 134 
"College of Mirania," 80 
Colony in SchuylkiU, 23, 102, 106, 122 
Commerce, 14 

Contributionship, 33-35, 60, 69 
Conway, General, 286, 295 
Conyngham, David, 219 
Cooke, Jay, 17 
Cornwallis, Lord, 83, 129, 145 
Correa de Serra, Abb^, 68, 207 
Coultas, Colonel James, 98-106, 107 
Coulton, Margaret, 156 
Craig, John, 261, 343 
Crawford Family, 312 
Cresheim Creek, 274 
Cresson, John C, 140 
Croydon, 189 

Cruickshank, Captain Charles, 159, 
160, 161 

Clementina, 160 



Darby, 83, 98, 106 
Darrach, Lydia, 287 
Dawesfield, 284r-288 
De Lancey, Captain Oliver, 91, 
Delaney, Miss Molly, 149 
Deschler, David, 225, 226 
Detwiler, John R., 296 
Dickinson, John, 173, 207, 208, 

Diggs, Ann, 301 
Dinners, 20 
Directory, First City, 
Douglass, David, 89 
Drinker, Elizabeth, 271, 290 

John, 130 
Duch6, Rev. Jacob, 303 
Dunkin, Ann, 70 
Du Ponceau, Peter, 68, 212 
Du Pont Family, 184 

Easttown Township, 170 
Eastwick, 97 
Ellis, Rowland, 167 
Emlen, George, 287 

House, 284-288 
Endeavour, The, 154 
Ephrata, 274, 290 
Episcopalians, 28 
Evans, Ann, 48 

Isaacher, 182 

Jonathan, 49 

Margaret, 135 

Rowland, 200 

Thomas, 50 

William, 49, 50, 51 
Evansburg, St. James, 185 
Ewen, Elizabeth, 102 

Joseph, 102 

Mary, 103 
Eyre, Manuel, 163 

Fairfax, Lord, 289 
Fair Hill, 216 



Fair Hill Meeting, 216 
Falls of Schuylkill, 82, 103, 104 
Farmer, Colonel Edward, 199 
Fatland, 189-198 
Fergusson, Henry Hugh, 304 
Fermor, Lady Juliana, 108 
Firth, Sarah Livezey, 275 
Fisher Family, 127, 312 

Joshua, 61 

Rowland, 61 

Samuel, 61 
Fort Washington on Hudson, 156 
Foulke House, 221 
Fox Chase, 2T3, 312 
Fox-Hunting, 22, 70-75 
Frankford, 318 

Franklin, Benjamin, 17, 60, 122, 134, 
139, 162, 173, 206, 207, 271, 302, 303 
Franks, Aaron, 135 

Abigail, 135, 136 

David, 135, 136, 189 

Fila, 136 

Isaac, 227 

Jacob, 135, 136 

Mary, 136 

Rebecca, 136, 138, 249 
Friends' Meeting, Gcrmantown, 264 
Fry, Joseph, 28, 29 

Galloway Family, 127 

Joseph, 122, 124, 128, 273 
Mrs., 124, 131 

Gates, General, 175 

Genet, Citizen, 207 

George HI, King, 91, 194, 303 

George's Hill, 156 

Germantown Academy, 229, 252, 258, 
Battle of, 245, 284, 285, 295, 296 

Gesbert, Hannah, 291 

Girard, Stephen, 17, 79, 201 

Glamorganshire, 59 

Glen Fern, 267. 274, 276 



Cllcmi, Tliomas Allen, \23 
Gloucester Fox-Hunting Club, 23, "tO- 

75, 106 
Godfrey, Thomas, 207 
Goldshorougli Family, 184 
Gordon, Governour Patrick, 289, 298 
Gorgas, Joseph, 274 
Gouverneur, Isaac, 140 

Juliana ^Matilda, 140 
Governour's Club, 19 
Graeme, Elizabeth, 303 

Park, 277, 298-304 

Dr. Thomas, 301, 302, 303 
Grange, The, 96, 158-166 
Gray, George, 102, 107 
Gray's Ferry, 94 
Greaves, Sarah, 155 
Greene, General, 285, 295 
Greland, Madame, 215 
Griswold, Rep. Court, 45, 46 
Growdon, Grace, 122 

Lawrence, 122 
Grumblethorpe, 217 
Gunner's Run, 323 
Guy Fawkes's Day, 29 
Gwynedd, 48 

Haines, Reuben, 219, 236 
Hallam, William, 88 
Hamilton, Andrew, 14, 21, 31, 85, 86, 
136, 303 

Governour James, 88 

Village, 84 

William, 86-88 
Hannon, 59 
Harrison, Hannah, 167 

Richard, 167 
Harriton, 167-169 
Harrogate, 318 

Inn, 322, 323 
Haverford Township, 158 
Haydock, Robert, 62 
Heath, Susanna, 279 
Heckeweldcr, John, 68 

Heijt, Hans Joest, 289 
Hicks, Elias, 49 
Higlilands, The, 281-283 
Hill, Henry, 57, 257 
Hiltzheimcr, Jacob, 73, 106 
Historical Society, 111, 173 
Hobart Family, 184 
HoUingsworth, Jacob, 106 

Levi, 73 
liolker, 145 
Hope, Henry, 257, 279 
Hope Lodge, 183, 277-280 
Hopewell, 176 
Hopkinson, Francis, 31, 303 
Horsham, 277, 300-301 

Township, 299 
Hospitality, 21 
Howard, John Eager, 248 
Howe, Sir WilUam, 92, 109, 123, 128, 

136, 137, 193, 211, 226, 296 
Hudson River, 125 
Hughes, John, 173 
Humboldt, Baron von, 68 
Hunsicker, Josiah E., 296 
Huntingdon, General, 286 

Ibbetson, Martha, 102 
Iddings, Elizabeth, 172 

Richard, 172 
IngersoU, Jared, 31 
Irvine, General, 295 
Islington Lane, 27 
Ivy, The, 305-311 

Jacobs, Israel, 173 
James, Abel, 133, 328, 331 

Mrs. Walter, 79 
James River, 115, 125 
Jansen, Dirck, 236, 240 
Jefferson, Thomas, 207 
Jericho Monthly Meeting, 49 
Johnson Family, 240, 241, 253, 256 

House, 239 

John, 274 
Jones, John, 307 



Kearsley, Dr., 14 

Keith, Lady Ann, 301, 302 
Mrs. Charles, 57 
Sir William, 211, 298-302 

Kelpins, 222, 273 

Keyser Family, 290 

Kingsessing, 94, 96, 108 

Knox, General, 286 

Knowles, Martha, 274 

Kunders, Thones, 214 

Lafayette, Marquis de, 237, 252, 259 
Lancaster, 128 
Lansdowne, 78, 110 
Laurel Hill, 122, 125-132 
Lee, Alice, 64 

Arthur, 64 

R. H., 64 

Thomas, 261 
Leech, Toby, 353 
Lenox, Major, 220 
Lewes, 154 
Lewis, Henry, 158, 159 

Mordecai, 59, 60 

Samuel N., 61 

William, 139, 181 
Livezey Family, 274-276 

Rachel, 240 

Thomas, 269, 274 
Llanengwan, 150 
Logan Family, 204-212 

James, 174, 204, 205, 210, 248 
Loudoun, 214 
Levering, Anna C, 62 

Mary, 62 
Lowber, Elizabeth, 265 
Lowell, James JRussell, 80, 146, 161, 

Lower Ferrj', 94 
Loyalists of Philadelphia, 123, 124, 

Lukens, Isaiah, 219 

Rev. Mr., 342 

Luzerne, Chevaliver do la, 65, 132 
Lynn Parish, 150 

Mackraby, Alexander, 22 
Macpherson, Captain John, 114-117, 

Madison, Dolly, 51 

James, 51 
Maen-Coch, 158 
Manayunk, 62 
Markets, 24, 25, 51 
Markoe, Abraham, 74 
Marshall, Sarah, 275 
Mason, Samuel, 264 
Mather, Joseph, 307, 347 

Richard, 310 
Matlock, Elizabeth, 156 
Matthews, Jaines, 224 
Maxwell, General, 286 
Maule, Elizabeth, 153 
McCall, General George, 57 
McClenachan, Blair, 145, 252 
McDougall, General, 285, 295 
McKean, Chief Justice, 61 
^IcMichael, James, 258, 294 
Mease, James, 74 
Merionethshire, 48, 150 
Merion Meeting, 151, 157 
Middle Ferry, 84, 102 
Mifflin Family, 127 

John, 60 

Miss ElizalK'tli, Kil, 162 

Thomas, 106, 168 
Militia Hill, 277 
Mill Grove, 195, 199-202 
.Miscliian/.a, 126, 145. 273 
Momnouth, Battle of, 177 
Montrcsor, Captain, 137 
Moore Hall, HI. 82, 171, 183-188 

Hon. John, 183, 188 

Judge, 17. SI. 171. I7:i. 183-188 

Rebecca, 82 

Sannifl H., 2.S3 



Morgan, Dr., 53 

J cuucii, .200 

Thomaii, 200 
Morris, Anthony, 281, 282, 351 

Captain Samuel, 70-75, 281 

Jiflingiiaiu B., 351 

KUiston P., 233 

Governour R. H., 291 

Isaac Wistar, 320 

James, 288 

James Pemberton, 351 

Joseph, 60 

Luke Wistar, 70, 75 

JMorris, 278 

Mrs. Robert, 46, 64, 65 

Robert, 17, 135, 145, 173 

Samuel, 278, 279 
Mount Pleasant, 113-121 
Mount Vernon, 178 
Muhlenberg, General, 286, 295 
Music, 28 
Musgrove, Aaron, 50 

Abigail, 50 

Elizabeth, 48 
Mutual Assurance Co., 33-35 
Myrtilla, 29 

Napoleon, 76, 77 
Nash, General, 295 
Neave, John, 69 
Neglee's Hill, 214, 216 
New Castle, 168 
Newtown, 37 
New York, 44 
Nichol, James, 219 
Nicklin, Philip, 248 
Norris, Charles, 210 

Deborah, 210, 212 

Isaac, 167, 208, 307 

Mary, 208 
Northern Liberties, 19, 318 

Ogontz, 305 

Old American Company, 88, 93 

Old Gaol, 24, 61 

Old Swedes Church, 304 

Old York Road, 299, 305, 309 

d'Orleans, Due, 162 

Ormiston, 122, 124, 125 

Oswald, Elizabeth, 248 

"Outinian Society," 111 

Pancoast, Samuel, 59 

Parr, Major James, 131, 132 

Parrish, Susamia, 62 

Paoli Massacre, 171, 285 

Parke, Colonel James, 294 

Paschall, Elizabeth Coates, 318-320 

Joseph, 318-320 

Sarah, 320 

Stephen, 129 

Thomas, 129 
Pastorius, Francis Daniel, 308 
Pawling, John, 289, 290 
Payne, Dorothy, 51 
Peale, Charles Willson, 124, 276 
Peale's Museum, 17 
Pemberton, Israel, 60, 349 

James, 350 

Marj% 263, 350 

Phineas, 307, 347 

Ralph, 347 
Pencoyd, 150-152 

Penn, Governour John, 110, 199, 200, 

Granville John, 111, 117 

John, 108-112 

liichard, 43 

Tliomas, 43, 303 

William, 14, 48, 133, 174, 199, 
205, 207, 289, 348 
Pennsylvania Gazette, 90, 103 
Pennsylvania Hospital, 17, 60 
Pennypack Creek, 37, 312 
Pennypacker, Henry (Panncbecker), 
290, 296 



Pennypacker, Honourable S. W., 

Peter, 290, 291, 297 

Samuel, 291, 292, 296 

William, 291 
Pemiypacker's Mills, 289-297 
Pen Rhyn, 345 
Penrose, Bartholomew, 174 

Dorothy, 310 

Mary, 174 

Samuel, 304 

Sarah, 310 
Perkiomen Creek, 189, 190, 199, 

Perot, Elliston, 233 

Family, 225 

John, 233 
Peters, Rev. Richard, 53, 303 

Richard, 21, 24, 31, 36, 87, 

William, 142 
Philadelphia Merchants, 14 
Philipse, Colonel Frederick, 44 

Manor, 44 
Phillips, Henry, 248 
Physick, Dr. Philip Lyng, 57, 58 
Pickering, 207 

Creek, 183 
PljTBOuth Meeting, 279 
Plumstead, William, 88 
Point Breeze, 79 
Polly, Tea Ship, 133 
Pomfret, Earl of, 108 
Pontgibaud, Chevalier de, 295 
Portius, James, 15 
Port Richmond, 323 
Port Royal House, 339 
Potter, General, 295 

John, 79 
Powel, Samuel, 31, 52, 55, 282 
Powell, Samuel, 53 
Pratt, Henry, 263 

James, 306, 307 
Preble, Rear Admiral, 74 
Presbyterians, 28 




Price, Chandler, 77, 79 
Princeton, 44 
Provincial Council, 24 

HaU, 24 
Pulaski, Count, 286 
Pumps, 19 

Quakers, 20 
Queen Lane, 82 

Radnor, 172, 179 
Randolph, Edmund, 228 

Family, 57, 132 

John, 207 

Peyton, 169 
Rawlc, Anna, 127, 129 

Family, 123, 184 

Francis, 126, 127 

Margaret, 127 

Mrs., 127, 132 

WilUam, SQ, 128 
Read, Sarah, 208 
Redwood, Hannah, 62 
Reed, General Joseph, 118, 128 

Joseph, 280 
Reese, Elizabeth, 156 
Reeve, Mrs. Josiali, 241 
Restoration of King Charles, 29 
Reynolds, John, 70 
Rhoads, Samuel, 60 
Richardson, Joseph, 40, 173 

Samuel, 307 

Sarah Morris, 40 
Rldgway, Abigail, 275 
Riley, Captain, 68 
Rittcnhouse, David. 263 

Nicholas, 263 

William, 262 
Roberts, Algernon, 151 

Hugh, 60 

John, 150-152 

Robert, 151 
Robeson, Peter, 274 
Ross, John, 160-165 



Kotclil'ord, 133 

Koyal Irish Itegiment, 21 

Uuclolj)!!, Ann, 83 

Colonol Jacob, 83 
Ruscht-nbergcr, W. S. W., 219 
Hush, Dr. Benjamin, 68, 178, 303 

Miss, 78 
Russell, Elizabeth, 307 

John, 307 

Sardinia, King of, 53 
Saunders, Hannah, 60 

Joseph, 60 
Say, Thomas, 219 
Schoepf, Dr., 18, 29 
Scott, General, 295 

General Winfield, 139 
Seabury, Bishop, 44 
Sergeant, Dickinson, 87 

John, 280 

Servants, 25 
Sheaff, George, 283 

John D. T., 283 
Shippen, Anne, 207 

Dr. WilUam, 64 

Edward, 59, 206, 207 

Peggy, 117 
Shoemaker, Benjamin, 130, 219, 310 

George, 309, 310 i 

George, Jr., 307 

Isaac, 310 

Samuel, 123, 127-131 

Thomas, 267 
Shutc, Joseph, 126, 134 

Thomas, 133 
Sims Family, 127 
Skip])aok Pike, 277, 281, 295 
Smedky Family, 156 
Smith, Benjamin P., 62 

Cornelius, 261 

Dfiniel, 219 

Family, 184 

John, 60, 208, 219 

Mrs. J. Somers, 265 

Smith, Rev. William, D.D., 17, 31, bi}- 
83, 104, 186, 187 

William Moore, 83 
Society Hill, 63 
Solitude, The, 108-112 
Southwark Theatre, 23, 89-90 
Sower, Christopher, 219 
Sports, 22 

Spottswood, Governour, 300 
Spring Bank, 262 
Stamper, John, 43 

Mary, 43 
Stanwix, Fort, 143 
State House, 14, 21, 287 
State in Schuylkill, 106, 110 
Stenton, 183, 203 
Stephen, General, 286, 295 
Sterling, General, 295 
Steuben, Baron, 119 
Stewart, Lieutenant Jack, 138 
Stiles, Edward, 340 
Stocker, John, 33 
Stocks and Pillory, 24 
Stockton, Richard, 303 
Story, Thomas, 207, 208 
Strettell, Robert, 21 
Stuart, Gilbert, 219 
St. David's, Radnor, 172, 179, 185, 

187, 188 
St. James's, Kingsessing, 106 
St. Luke's, Germantown, 215 
St. Mary's, Colestown, 44 
St. Paul's, 90 

St. Peter's, 27, 44, 45, 47, 53 
St. Thomas's, Whitemarsh, 277 
Sullivan, General, 191, 295 
Survilliers, Comte de, 76-79 
SutdiflF, Robert, 190-192 
Swarthmore College, 62, 63 
Swift Family, 127 
Syng, Philip, 60 

Talleyrand, 162 
Taylor Family, 312 



Tea Drinking, 65 
Thackeray, 17, 67 
Tlieatres, 88 
Thomas Family, 107 
Thomson, Charles, 168, 169 
Thurston, Joseph D., 62 
Tilgliman, Chief Justice, 68 

Edward, 248 
Town Clock, 19 
Trevose, 122 
Turtle Dinners, 23 
Twining, Thomas, 310 
Tyson, John, 310 

University, 17, 80, 173 

Upsala, 255 

Ury, 135 

Ury House, 312-317 

Valley Forge, 170, 176-192, 316 
Varnum, General, 286 
Vaughn, 68 
Vaux Family, 169 

Hill, 189-198 

James, 189-193 
Vernon, 224 
Vincent Township, 173 
Virginia Commissioner, 21 
Volney, 162 
Von Schweinitz, 219 

Wall, Richard, 305 

Richard, Jr., 305, 308 

Sarah, 307 
Wain, Nicholas, 17, 24, 36-41, 56, 

Robert, 335, 339 
Wall Grove, 139, 334 
Walnut Grove, 137 
Walter, Anna, 62 
Walton, Hannah, 48 

Michael, 48 
Warner, Edward, 127 

Familv, 110, 142 

o — , 

Warner, Mary, 152 

Rebecca, 127 
Wasliington, George, 23, 45, 54, 74, 
75, 92, 93, 110, 118, 176-193, 207, 
211, 225, 228, 251, 258, 284-288, 292- 
294, 296, 297, 318 
Watmough, Colonel James Horatio, 

Family, 280 
Wayne, General Anthony, 17, 171- 
181, 286, 295 

Isaac, 172, 181 

Margaretta, 183 

William, 182 
Waynesborough, 170-182 
Weedon, General, 286 
Welcom-e, The, 153, 154 
Welsh, Honourable John, 2(j5 

Barony, 150, 151, 154, 169 
Wemyss, David, 184 

Earl of, 184 

Lady Williamina, 184, 188 
Wentz, 280 
West, 336 

William, 279 
Westover, 53, 181 
West River, 122 
Wetherill, Blues, 198 

Colonel John, 198 

Dr. William, 196-198 

Family, 202 

Mrs., 196 

Samuel, 195 

W. H., 202 
Wharton, Charles, 61, 63 

Debora, 62, 63 

Family, 62 

Francis, 140 

Isaac, 127, 139, 140 

Joseph, 137, 139 

Robert, 278 

Thomas. 139, 272, 273, 294 
Wheel, Joane. 305 
Whelen Familv. 181 



Whitby Hnll, 98-106, 107 

White, Bishop, 27, 30, 31, 32, 45, 87, 

IIG, 303 
Whitcmarsh Valley, 277, 281 

Encampment, 284-288 
Whitpain Encampment, 284-288, 286 
Whittier, J., 9, 332 
Wilcocks, Alexander, 248 
Wilcox, Captain John, 159, 165 
Willing, Ann, 43 

Family, 47 

George, 43 

Thomas, 53 
■William Penn Charter School, 37 
Williams, Gabriel, 172 

General Jonathan, 19 

Isaac, 274 

Major, 171 
Wilson, Alex., 97 
W^ireman, Anna C, 296 
W^issahickon Creek, 273 
Wistar, Caspar, 217 

Dr. Caspar, 65-68 

Wistar, Margaret, 236 

Parties, 66, 67, 217 
Wister, Alexander W., 223 

Charles J., 222, 223 

Daniel, 221 

John, 217, 224 

Owen, 223 

Sally, 221 

Susan, 212 

William, 220 
Woodford, 133-139, 140 
Woodlands, 84, 85, 86-88 
Wiister, Hans Casper, 217 
Wyck, 236 
W'ynne, John Ap John, 154 

Jonathan, 155, 156 

Samuel, 156 

Thomas, 155 

Thomas Ap John, 153 
Wynnestay, 153-157 

York, Duke of, 53 
Yorkshire, 98, 101, 170 




T0~-^ 202 Main Library 


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